Today was our first "normal" day on camp.... if you can call meeting your husband for lunch by the beach normal. I guess the reality is, this IS our new "normal". At times it feels like this is our life here... I mean we eat, sleep, play, clean, have some of our stuff here, shop.... we do regular life things here.... but in the same breath, it still kind of feels like we are on vacation. It hasn't really hit home that we are here for the long haul. This is home... not vacation.
It is a bit hard to feel like home when we are fully settled here yet. Our friends and family are back "home", the majority of our stuff is on a boat in the middle of the ocean, and the kids and I are still on summer break. Add that to the fact that we are surrounded by a beautiful beach, palm trees, swimming pools with constant life guards, golf club, horse farm, and people drive around golf carts.... it starts to feel like a Florida beach resort that we are spending the summer at.
Back to today, that was what was nice about today.... it is getting us use to our new "normal"! We had our first morning with our new weekly morning routine. Brad got up, made coffee and smoothies, and then left for work. The kids and I hung out at the house with a lazy morning and bowls of cereal for breakfast before heading out for our first play date! Just around the corner from us is a family that has been here 6 years and they have 2 young boys (Addyson and Ethan's ages) and expecting a 3rd... it was nice to pick her brain! There was also another momma there with a boy a little younger than Ethan and expecting. For me, it was nice to see that there are other families doing the same thing we are with our young kids.....so we can't be that crazy, right?!?! Sometimes it is hard to stand confident in your decision when you don't know anyone else who has walked the same path... and not that you can't be a trend setter/ do your own thing... it is just harder to do and harder to explain to others who don't understand. So seeing other families that are walking the same path with kids the same ages as ours and who have been walking this path for a couple of years helps put my mind and heart at ease knowing it can be done and confirming that we have made the right decision for our family! At least for now it seems right... so we'll go with it... for how long? Until it doesn't feel right any more.
But for now, I'm going to enjoy making up for lost time! Brad was gone SO much... especially while Owen and Addyson were young. He missed out a lot of milestones and memories for them. Now we get a chance to make up for lost time with lunch dates during the week, evenings together that start at 4, and lots of time off! Not only that, but I'm going to enjoy making up for some down time!!! : ) I no longer have to have dinner ready by 6 when Brad gets home... that I've had to prepare with starving kids at my feet.... nope, now Brad is home and we can make dinner together or one can take over the kids while the other cooks. I'm going to enjoy having Liton (our house boy) come over twice a week to clean... after doing it myself for so long I'm ready for a break! Brad's going to enjoy having Awal (our lawn boy) come over every day to keep up with the outside so he doesn't have to spend his precious time off sweating outside.... at least not outside sweating because he is working on the yard... now we can spend the time outside at a ballgame, beach, or pool. Hard to believe this is our new normal!
While it will be weird to have the 2 older kids go to school every day starting September 1 (September 8 for Addyson), it will be nice to get into our new routine and really settle into life at Ras Tanura..... to settle into our new "normal".... and living out our daily normal days... much like our day today!
I do also have to say this... I keep forgetting... the kids are adjusting great! I've actually been SO surprised by the lack of comments and questions about how others are dressed while we are out in public. Owen asked something at lunch yesterday but that was about me taking pictures and what was I taking pictures of and he didn't understand why we were hushing him. The other thing that I worry about is singing religious songs or trying to say prayers in public... and this has happened... I just sush them and we are working on talking about how we can do these things at home but not in public and it is going over really well. So all in all, I'm really proud of how they are all adjusting!
And lastly, after I wrote this post we went swimming after dinner and I'm proud to say that Addyson was swimming without her water wings on!!! This is a HUGE step for her... she has been refusing to take her wings off and now she WANTS to and wants to swim!! She'll be swimming after Owen before too long!!!