Thursday, December 18, 2014

Moroccan Wedding

This past weekend we hosted our driver's wedding at our house. There were over 200 people here,  about 6 different outfit changes for the bride and at least 3 for the groom and the loudest music I have ever heard. I am not going to pretend like I knew what was going on at all so I can offer no explanations on most of the pictures below!

Our little Moroccan princess!

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The bride getting her henna done.

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Here comes the groom! This was about a 20 minute parade with musicians dancing all the way down our street. Ahmed's sisters and sister in law are walking up carrying those small trunks and the guys behind them are carrying the gifts from the groom to the bride in those containers on their heads. The groom was riding in the car at the end of this procession.

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Dancing in the street!

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The groom and his parents about to walk into the villa.

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We snuck upstairs for a wardrobe change for Danny.

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We headed upstairs to put Lily to bed around 12:30 and missed the rest of the wedding, but it raged on until about 3 am! I wish we would have stayed up because the last couple of outfits the bride wore were amazing!!!

It was so fun to get to be a part of Ahmed and Hajar's wedding! Wishing the newlyweds a lifetime of happiness!!!
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Friday, December 5, 2014

The Making of Our Christmas Card

I LOVE Christmas cards. We have sent out Christmas cards every year since we have been married and I love looking at the changes in our family year over year. I also keep every Christmas card we have ever gotten because I like doing the same thing with other peoples families too!

I started brainstorming about this year's card back in the summer (I clearly have too much time on my hands). I knew I wanted it to be something special so that when we looked at that card in years to come we would instantly know that 2014 was the Christmas we lived in Morocco.

Luckily, we live really close to the beach and the guys who give camel rides to tourists literally walk right in front of our house everyday on their way to the beach. I realized that nothing screams "Morocco" like camels! So, we had a camel come to our house for a little Christmas card photo shoot!

We didn't end up with that many great pictures because either the camel wasn't looking, Lily wasn't looking or Lily was doing her creepy toddler smile, but it will surely go down as one of the most memorable things we have ever done. You will also notice that our cat, Tessa, photo bombed almost all of the pictures and had to be cropped out. She is such a diva.

Here comes the camel!

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He didn't fit through the front gate, so he had to come through the carport gate. 
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He was ready for his close up. 
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The camel started moving and I panicked!
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Off to his next job...
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Tuesday, December 2, 2014

So Thankful

Celebrating an American holiday in a foreign country is tough! First of all, it's not that much fun spending holidays away from family. Second of all, this country does not carry about half of the ingredients we needed for a traditional Thanksgiving meal and lastly, due to the time change, the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and football games were all 6 hours behind for us so they were not playing at the appropriate time of day (total first world holiday problems)!

We started off our Thanksgiving holiday by prepping  what we could the night before and turning on a festive candle to get in the Thanksgiving Eve spirit! Lily also made us watch the Charlie Brown Thanksgiving movie for about the 30th time this month.

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On Thanksgiving morning we woke up bright and early to have a festive breakfast of cinnamon rolls made to look like turkeys. I am a sucker for a holiday themed breakfast for my little lady!

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After breakfast, it was back in the kitchen to get to the real cooking.

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We ended up making stuffing, turkey breasts, gravy, mac & cheese, sweet potato casserole, green bean casserole, rolls and sweet tea. Honestly, it all tasted ok but nothing was quite right.

We don't have cheddar cheese in Morocco so the mac & cheese was off. We also don't have real corn meal here so the corn bread stuffing wasn't quite right texture wise, but had good flavor. Our oven is too small to make a whole turkey and we didn't need one for three people which is why we just went with turkey breasts.  They were actually really good! The Moroccan version of sweet potatoes are not the same as what we have in America so the casserole was a white color and not sweet enough. Danny made a valiant effort on the green bean casserole with his fresh green beans, made from scratch cream of mushroom and homemade french fried onions (none of those things are available in a can here) but I think I prefer it with all the processed goodness it is normally made with which is saying a lot because we really don't eat many processed foods. Just goes to show, don't mess with perfection!

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We spent the rest of our day relaxing, putting up the Christmas tree after Lily's nap and watching Christmas movies!

You will notice that our tree skirt is actually a sheep skin from the sheep that our driver's family slaughtered during their big holiday a couple months ago. The family had it made into a rug for me and it looked perfect under our dinky little tree. We like to merge cultures around here.

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We are now in Christmas mode!
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