Weekend Links

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Its almost weekend, have you planned already?

1. 30 Habits of Women Men Don't Get I agree that we women are complex and hard to fathom but definitely man have habits that we don't get either, shall we enumerate them? :)

2. 10 Annoying Things Men Do Ok this is not a battle but I am just being fair to men and to women.

Next topic pleaseeeee...

3. The smoke that thunders I love those rainbows and I miss to see them a lot. Whoaaa is it safe to mingle with those cats? Beautiful photos to stare at.

4. Everyday Food with Sarah Carey For ice cream without churn, perfect omellete for breakfast or glazed salmon for dinner watch Sarah Carey's videos - easy to cook meals. you can whip a salmon dish in barely 15 minutes

5. First Space Elevator - Being taken seriously by researchers and scientist. It is a thing of the future, to build one price estimates from $10 to $50 billion US Dollars

Happy weekend everyone!!!
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Eid Mubarak!

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This photo was a print screen from the DIFC CEO Eid Greeting video I received. Truly the view of Dubai at night is mesmerizing, like glistening diamond crystals at night. I don't know how many times I played the video to see the above scene again and again. It truly makes a good impression.

See the video here. I bet it will go viral.

Anyways, its Thursday and the last day of the work week here in Dubai and it is also the beginning of a long weekend. Enjoy your holiday and Eid Mubarak to our Muslim brothers all over the world.

To my brother, Eid Mubarak bro. we love you.

EID MUBARAK!
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Hopscotch - Piko

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There used to be a carpet right there but in attempt to add more indoor activities for my kids, I rolled out the carpet and put hopscotch on the tiles using green vinyl sticker. I can’t use paint as it will surely damage the tiles (I don’t want that because for sure my landlord will ask me to replace those damaged tiles if one day we decided to vacate the property) while colored chalks will easily fade away and we have to draw again and again. My kids and I are turned out to be allergic to dust so removing that carpet is a relief.

When we went on vacation last December to Philippines, I find my nieces and my nephew hooked on their iPhone or computer most of the time and I admit that even my daughter was doing the same, all of them busy with their own tech-savvy world. It is sad because there is lack physical activity and social interaction thinking that they are kids, they are supposed to be out playing right. I remember when I was their age, you’ll not find me home, either I am out climbing trees and picking seasonal fruits with my friends or I am playing piko, Chinese garter, bending, tumbang preso, harangan taga, langit lupa, and sipa with them. I’m sure if you are a Pinoy kid of the 80’s, you know these games I am talking about. Hopscotch or “piko” is every kid’s game in our country and probably everywhere else in the world.

I called the kids outside one day and draw a big piko on the street, show them how it is done and what the rules are. After that they are on their own playing almost all day long. I was happy to teach them this game I played myself many years ago and even if we are back in Dubai, my kids can enjoy the game she used to play with her cousins.

I add numbers on each box and those are intended for my two year old son so he can familiarize himself with the numbers. Prince is currently on potty training and he is learning his letters and numbers

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Touring Sheikh Zyed Grand Mosque in my abaya

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Touring Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is a must when you are visiting Abu Dhabi. We've been here four years ago and it was not yet complete, the garden outside still waiting to be landscaped. We wanted to enter the mosque to see the grandeur of the famed place of prayer but we were denied. We content ourselves photographing it from the outside. Still it looks majestic.


Four years later and we are back with two of our friends. I make sure to check the mosque management website before our trip in order not to be denied for the second time. Looking at the dress code below, I understood that we were not properly dressed before. There were dressing booths at the entrance now where ladies can borrow abaya and shayla which were not there before. Me and my friend each took an abaya and shayla and started covering ourselves. The abaya was easy to put on but the headscarf is very tricky though. We struggle to keep it in place all the time. Our partners are fine with their clothes. Here's a souvenir photo with our very handsome and knowledgeable tour guide.



Moving on to the more exciting part of the tour but first let me tell you that this is a complimentary guided tour, yes its FREE. It was Friday and we joined the 5pm schedule. A local guy ask the visitors to come closer before he starts introducing to us our tour guides. When he finished talking he ask us to devide into groups and assigned one tour guide to each group.

Our local guide was well versed, speaking in pure English as he speak except for the Arabic terms he is explaning to us. There was a myth I'd like to confirm with him so I ask if all the gold we see around are real gold. "Only those that you cannot reach are real gold", he answered with a chuckle. He was pertaining to the ones in the minarets of course and the domes.


The size of the SZGM is the size of five football fields, it can accomodate up to 40,000+ worshippers inside and out. It features 82 domes, the main dome the largest of its kind measuring 32.8 meters in diameter where the worlds largest chandelier made of swarovski crystals weighing nine tonnes hang.




Reflective pools surround the mosque and it's best to capture the mosque reflection at night. The unique lighting system is responsible for that beautiful bluish gray cloud projected in the external walls which reflect the phases of the moon and changes everyday.

Italian white marble and inlaid floral designs adorn the prayer halls while the interior walls have decorative gold-glass mosaic features



The main glass door weighs 2.2 tonnes and measure 12.2 meters high and 7 meters wide



Inside the main prayer hall is the worlds largest hand-knotted carpet handcrafted by 1300 Iranian artisans. There are 2, 286,000 knots and it took them two years to finish it before finally spreading it on the mosques floors. It did not get here in UAE in one big piece, another 500 people came to Dubai from Iran with it to finish it in the mosque itself. If you can see, the carpet has an almost invisible line pattern where the worshippers lined up during prayer.  


 The Qibla wall (facing the direction of the Holy City of Mecca) is 23 meters high and 50 meters wide in which the 99 names (qualities) of Allah is written in traditional Kufi caligraphy designed by UAEs prominent caligrapher - Mohammed Mandi. This is the counterpart of the altar and priest ( Imam in Islam) pulpit in our churches.

                             

Gold-glass mosaic has been used in the Mehrab-it's the one in the above photo in the middle of the Qibla wall with golden ripples. The floral design clock on the wall indicates the time of prayer, it is five times during the day.


 As you can see all the details and the design are made to perfection. Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is the result of the vision of the founding father of UAE, the late president Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan whose remains finds it final resting place in the mosque courtyard.





 That's me and my friend in our Emirati traditional clothes.






 For full information about SZGM please visit their website here



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Sand Boarding in Liwa 101

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Sand boarding is one of the activities we engage ourselves in during our stay in Tilal Liwa. It was our first time doing the sport and we were on our own. Carrying two boards from the hotel and four cold bottled water, we went in search for the ideal dune. :) hehe! Actually there is no ideal dune, It's just a product of my own imagination hehhehe! The height of the dune you will use depends on how courageous you are to try it. From far the mounds of sand looks small but when you get there it is humongous. We were all beginners - did I said that already? :D

The sand dunes all look like this surrounding the hotel and from the hotel we walked to here, it is about  500 meters away. We decided to use the dune we first reached because going to the next is suicide, it's too hot outside maybe more than 50 degrees C and the sand gets hotter by the minute.
At this point we only followed our instincts.
First step: Stand at the top of the dune, position the board at the edge of the slope.



Second Step: Slowly slide the board downward, keep you knees bent and keep your balance as you slide


Third Step: Let slide until you reach the bottom. You can scream all you want if you feel like doing so. :D

Now we have learned the steps on how to do the proper sand boarding, you can also try other positions like the sitting position


While out in the sun, keep yourself well hydrated, the only thing was the cold water can easily become lukewarm in the heat so drink it before it boils. :D

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