Thursday, October 29, 2009

It's October

You don't realize how much stuff you have until you move. Then, you don't realize how much stuff you rely on until you don't have it for an extended period of time. We sent our shipment to Qatar back in the third week of July, hoping we would only be here a couple of weeks without it. Now, having been here over two months, you become grateful for a lot of small things.

We should be receiving our shipment in 2 hours and 9 minutes, not that I am counting. Leoni will get to sleep in her crib tonight, and I can't wait to cook in something other than one tiny pot or a frying pan. Yes, I have cooked spaghetti in a frying pan.

This is me with our cart of luggage the day we left.

You would think with this much stuff, that we had everything we possibly needed.

Here are the honestly looks like less now that it is here. I had already started opening a couple of boxes when I took this.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Ahh...the weekend

So, the weekend is halfway over for us. Because we are living in a Muslim country, the weekend is a little different than that of the Western world. Depending on the country, the weekend may be Thursday & Friday or Friday and Saturday. In Qatar, the weekend is Friday & Saturday. I think it has to do with business & western countries. If we followed the Thursday & Friday weekend, business with western countries would be isolated to two and a half days each week: our Monday afternoon through Wednesday. Keeping to Friday & Saturday instead at least adds an additional day.

We attend our church meetings on Friday and then Saturday is our free day. Travis returns to work on Sunday. The change has been a little weird, but we are getting used to it. I sometimes get a little confused as to the day of the week especially Monday, because we didn't just go to church the day before. This also makes the titles of some of the church meetings comical. "Sunday School" isn't really on Sunday, but we still call it that. I imagine there are a few songs the Primary children don't sing..."Saturday is a special day. It's the day we get ready for Sunday." It just doesn't hold the same meaning here.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Qatar University

I teach. I teach the English. Lindsay posted that we are in Qatar because of my job. We realized that after getting a Master's in TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Langauges), and as a mono-income family, we could live in the US and be somewhat financially-challenged, or we could venture overseas and make enough to provide for the family and our future. That's just the breaks of this field. So, I accepted a job at Qatar University.

Thank you to Flickr and the photographer Maryam for this lovely shot of the Women's Library.

At QU, all of the students are Arabs, which most often means they are Muslim - yes, there are Arab Christians. Most are from Qatar, but there are a few others from various Arab nations. After matriculation, some are still at a low level of English. So, they enter the Foundation Program, where I teach. After passing through the Foundation Program - usually two years (or testing out of it early) - students work on their regular programs of study where the medium of instruction is English or Arabic. All of the student body is divided into two campuses: men's and women's; I teach women, level 2. We work on reading, writing, listening, and speaking skills that they need in order to be successful students in their regular university programs.

This is a great opportunity for me to develop professionally and gain experience. We have been - and will continue to be - blessed with many great benefits and opportunities. Also, so far, this is a great place. Who knows? We could see ourselves living overseas for only a short while (my contract is initially for three years) or for many years.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

A "Q" is always followed by a "U"...or is it?

Maybe in the English language, but not in the case of the country Qatar. That is where we are. There are a few other words in English that balk at that rule, but all that I found are of Arabic origin.

"Where is Qatar?" you might ask. The majority of Americans who have even heard of Qatar only have the connection of it being where the Decepticons first attacked in the first Transformers movie. First, I have not seen any Decepticons. Second, I haven't seen the mountains portrayed by Hollywood either.

Qatar is a small peninsula off the larger Arabian Peninsula. Its border connects to the east side of Saudi Arabia, and it juts out into the Persian Gulf.

We live in the capital, Doha, where the majority of the country's population also resides. For more info on Qatar, you can click here for the Wikipedia version.

You may ask, "Why are they there?" The short answer is, "Travis is teaching English at Qatar University in the Foundations Program." More on this at a later time. We are excited for the adventures we will have here.

Friday, October 9, 2009


I have been intending to start a blog for quite some time. I wanted to start for sheer want of doing it. Simply recording my life, the ups and downs, the metamorphoses. The last thing I wanted was to start a blog only because I was having a baby. I had things to share. Well, several years and a 5 1/2 month old later, my life has actually slowed down enough for me to actually take the time to share all that I have been/am doing. So, without further ado, welcome to our blog, finally. Feel free to follow Travis, Lindsay & Leoni through our journeys, wherever they may take us.