Thursday, October 20, 2011

Happy Birthday Ezzat!

Daniel came up with a sweet idea in making the present giving fun and awesome! He made it like some sort of a treasure hunt with clues so Ezzat had to hunt for his presents.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Ezzat is 8

Today is Ezzat's birthday and he's 8. We didn't really plan for anything special since the boys said they wanted to have a combined party. Well, I actually gave them the idea since I am really not up to having 3 birthday parties 2 weeks apart from each other. With my condition at the moment, preparing for one already sounds pretty daunting. As a matter of fact, we've never thrown one before. Not even once. It was always a small family affair. But the boys have been going to their friends' birthday parties and now they really want one for themselves, especially Emir. He's been talking about it for quite awhile. But the birthday boy is getting his present today and he is getting his chocolate cupcakes  and cheese pizza. I'd say that's a pretty good deal.

I've been looking at his pictures since last night since he first came to the States. He actually changed quite a bit. I really miss his chubbiness. He is also more talkative now. He used to be the quiet one. I thought I'd share some of them with you guys. 

All of these pictures were taken in Dec 2009 when the kids first got to Hawaii. Ezzat just turned six in October that year.

Jan 2010 - Jul 2010 in Hawaii.

Learning to ride a bike without training wheels for the first time 
Montana, Jul 13 2010

 Fishing with Grammy and Poppy - Montana, Jul 16 2010

Fort  Ward State Park, Bainbridge Island WA - May 14 2011 

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Awesome gifts and birthday

I promise that this is going to be my final entry about birthdays for this year. And this one is for Mr. Farhan. He turned eight 10 days ago and I didn't really have time to sit down and write and upload all the photos with all  the things that had happened in the past weeks. I can't really say which one took more time, but they're pretty much made me sound like 'Jill of all trades, master of none' kind of person. Poppy sent the kids super cool gifts and they LOVE it. They also got some awesome Legos from Auntie Cheri all the way from Malaysia but I didn't take any photos of them amidst all the chaos of cooking, opening the Lego boxes and putting them together. So thank you so much to Poppy and Auntie Cheri! 

These cute little critters have their own names. The red one is Nino, the one that looks like a grasshopper is Leopold and there's Talullah in purple. These bugs can jump and fly pretty high. We pressed them against a smooth clean surface until the suction cups on the bottom grabbed on to it. After a few seconds waiting, the suction cups were released and the critters jumped off to another place. Fun!

Here are Bonga, Zecar and Pintacuda. These windups and the bugs are all from Kikkerland.

Birthday boy eating dinner which consisted of herbed basmathi rice, steamed green beans, turmeric sticky rice and beef rendang. He loved them especially the sticky rice.

He hated this though

He didn't seem to mind that these were pink. I just used whatever that was left in the fridge so I ended up making vanilla cupcakes with blueberry cream cheese frosting.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Emir is 9!

Another birthday entry! Emir turned 9 last Sunday and we took him and his brothers to the Naval Undersea Museum nearby our house. He also got a dvd that has something to do with Star Wars game which I don't have any clue on how to play, in which he is allowed to play - at certain times on certain days, only when he fulfills a few conditions we have set for him. So don't worry. 

Actually we started our day pretty late that day. I had to go to the commissary to get a few things to make the birthday cake, and Emir had to get a haircut since it started to look messy and made his head looked bigger. And in between that time, Daniel took the birthday boy to Target to get the dvd game that he wanted. So by the time we got home for lunch, it was already 2pm and the museum opens until 4pm so there's no way for us to have lunch first and then go to the museum. So the plan changed, I stayed at home to prepare lunch and the cake and sushi for dinner (requested by Mr Emir) and all the 4 boys went to the museum. And the kitchen was in total mess by the end of the day, with chocolate ganache all over the place. I should have picked a much easier recipe for the cake or at least prepare the filling or the cakes one day earlier. Dinner ended way passed the kids bed time and we did the birthday song in less than 3 seconds that sounded like a fast-forward Alvin & the Chipmunk's recording, in which during that period also covered blowing out candles. Hardly any pictures were taken but whatever that we have, they're here for you to enjoy :-).

Emir with a new hair cut. The only picture that I took of him that night. And we have to get him new glasses too since it's broken.

Ezzat wished Emir Happy Birthday and gave Emir a hug before going to bed. I guess he was very sleepy since he said no to the cake. On the other hand, Mr Farhan happily ate his portion and tried to stay up as long as he could. Of course it was limited, only until he finished his cake, brushed his teeth, and gave each of us a hug. 

I love natural light. It makes so much difference to the pictures I take.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Ezzat's Birthday

Birthday - it has always been a low-key event for us. For Ezzat's birthday, apart from taking him on the Boeing tour a few days before his actual birthday, I made him some cupcakes on his birthday and cooked dinner as usual.

Ezzat decorated the cupcakes with tiny chocolate rice balls and whoppers and was pumped about it.


This reminded me of a picture I took on Eid

Silly boy

We used a normal candle just for the sake of having a candle for him to blow. Cheapskate? Probably, but it worked =)

This boy looked so grown up

Going Boeing

Ezzat's birthday present this year - visiting a plane museum. And not just that, (in no particular order) he got to visit a Boeing factory, took ferry rides, spent a night at a hotel, spent some time at the hotel's swimming pool, ate a lot of sushi, watched some TV way passed his bed time and ate some junk food which he normally doesn't get to have. Probably sounds like 'ehhh' to some but for an officially seven year old boy - he thought it's awesome!

This time we took the ferry from Kingston terminal. Took us 30 minutes to cross over to Edmond instead of  Seattle. From Edmond we drove to Paine Field, where the hotel is, which is exactly next to the museum!

That's Boeing assembly building right there! This is the view from the hotel's entrance. Ezzat was literally drooling by this time.

We had sushi mushi mania that night. I love sushi but only to a certain degree. Raw salmon or tuna is fine with me but that's about it. Anything raw beyond that, no thank you. I used to think that making sushi was a mysterious art form best left in the hands of those skilled sushi chefs, with all the rolling, stuffing, and topping resulting in perfectly balanced sushi. In my case, I would usually rely on the guy behind the commissary sushi counter or any sushi place that won't cost us a giant hole in our wallet. With a family of 5, that's rarely the case. But you know what, after trying to make them, it's not as nerve-wrecking as I thought it would be. Cleaning up however, was a different story - with the aftermath of all the shaping, patting, rolling, cutting - you name it. Do some homework, watch some youtubes, get whatever ingredients you need to make them, and roll!

Fun time at the pool

 Resulting in this face

 And this

Next morning - walking towards the museum which is just next door. 

This place is called Future of Flight Aviation Center. It didn't seem like it was much to look at, very few interactive exhibits. I think it looks like a hangar turned gallery, that was given a bit of makeover, where people can stop  by and check out exhibits relating to Boeing and aviation in general before they proceed to the Boeing factory which is the main attraction. But the boys seemed to enjoy themselves. So it's probably just me.

We're not allowed to bring any electronic devices on the tour so no pictures of that. Luckily there's a cheap locker in the main building for rental so we just left everything in there. The tour cost $15 for adult and $8 for kids and the kids have to be more than 4ft tall to be on the tour and Ezzat barely made it. (We purchased our tickets from the website and booked the date and time we wanted.) The whole thing took 90 minutes, starting with a video presentation at an auditorium about Boeing's history, how it all started to it's latest projects. We're not allowed to use the restroom once the video started and that's exactly the time when Farhan told me he wanted to go there! So we waited until the video was over, thinking that we might be able to go after that while waiting for the bus to come to take us to the assembly building but nope. The bus was right on time. And we had no choice but to board the bus and the poor boy had to hold during the entire 90 minutes since there's no potty breaks on the tour as well. By the time it was over, he said that he didn't feel like going to the restroom anymore. I made him go anyway.

So we proceeded to the factory on the bus. Our tour guide is a pretty straight forward lady, knows her facts and figures well. The tour basically showed us the manufacturing line of Boeing airplanes from start to finish.  The Everett plant here operates 24 hours 5 days a week from Monday to Friday through 3 shifts. We went  there on Saturday and it was pretty quiet so a weekday might have more action. Still it was a pretty cool experience. The scale of the buildings here has to be experienced. It can hold all of Disneyland and still there is plenty of space available for parking. We had two stops to see the 747 assembly area, and then the 777 and newer 787 area.  Basically we saw planes, parts of planes, and parts of planes becoming planes from an observation platform probably around 50 feet in the sky (The platform rail is about 4 ft high so I guess that's the reason why kids need to be higher than than). On the tarmac we saw a  super huge Dreamlifter, a modified 747 airplane. It's primary use is to transport parts of Boeing 787 Dreamliner from supplier around the world to the 787 final assembly site here in Everett. I wish I have a picture to show you guys. It's crazy huge.

At the observation deck in the main building. 

 The birthday boy

The hotel where we stayed at. The weather was great that day, clear blue sky all the way. After we're done with the Aviation Center, we just headed back to our car to catch the next available ferry since we've already checked out from the hotel earlier.

We did stop at this restaurant, Claire's Pantry to get some lunch. 

They're not that great.

Back on the ferry

Calmness is great

Sleeping is better