Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Best Of Blue Abaya 2012

Happy New Year 2013!!

2012 was a great year for Blue Abaya and I want to thank all my readers for the continuous support and positive feedback. I could not have done without you! There are moments when I feel exhausted and discouraged but your comments and encouragement to continue have given me the motivation to try and make Blue Abaya even better, interesting and more useful in 2013.

2012 Blue Abaya came as a finalist in the annual Bloggies Awards and won the Gold medal at the Expats Blogs Awards! Thank you again for the votes!

In case you missed any here are some favorite posts and highlights from 2012.

Princess And The Pimple:
Story of a Saudi Princess who wakes up one morning with a huge pimple on her face. Her mother takes her to the emergency room VIP section where the royal pimple receives more medical attention than the dying baby next door.
Another funny story of the royal family check Royal Morgue

Read an Expat's Tale From A Saudi Jail post to hear how one of my friends got arrested by the Saudi religious police. She found herself thrown into a Saudi jail where she was harassed by the Saudi female guards and not allowed any contact with the outside world.

2012 our dreams came true and we finally found an apartment inside the Diplomatic Quarters. Moving in was nothing short of a nightmare! Read the hilariously horrible ordeal here:

Saudi Dude's Guide To Finnish Coffee Drinking Ceremony. Learn the crazy coffee drinking ritual of Finns, complete with guide how not to get stabbed while greeting a Finnish man.

Ramadan Junk Food And Fungus burgers.
Saudi -Arabia has a big problem with junk food. Check out the Hardee's fungus burger too!

Find out what the Saudi Post Chocolate Monster did with my chocolates this time!

We were blessed with a son in 2012 and my husband is and has been such a great father and support for me that I dedicated a post to him:
We Love You, Baba

I want to hear from you readers what kind of posts would you like to see more or less of in 2013?
Do you like the local guides and to hear about my travels around Saudi-Arabia and the ME?
What about the cultural comparison posts where I highlight the fascinating differences between the polar opposites Finland and Saudi-Arabia?
How about posts about current happenings and on goings and health care sector related articles?
Or perhaps more of real life stories and rants from life in the Kingdom?

I would really appreciate the feedback!

A few exciting plans are coming up for Blue Abaya in the future..stay tuned..

I wish everyone a fantastic year 2013!


Ciara said...

Hi Laylah.

Many happy returns for 2013.

I have read your blog for the past number of weeks (and delved into the archives) as a move to Saudi has been on the cards for my husband and myself. We found out yesterday (1st January) that the move is definite... an auspicious start to the New Year!

We are open to having an adventure, and resigned that things won't always go as smoothly as we would like!!

Your blog has been a great source of practical information as well as a comfort that in fact Saudi has some very definite differences to where we are from (Ireland) but indeed below the surface probably many similarities!!

Keep up the good work for 2013! On a personal note I would love to hear from you about maternity options in Saudi Arabia as adding to our family is also a goal for 2013, and having a first child is a scary enough prospect without the added idea of doing it so far away from home and family support!!

I look forward to continue reading!


Ildi said...

HI Laylah, happy new year for u too! Thank you for awesome work dear!
Do you plan to write 'Tuesday ten' posts again? I would be happy to read them again in new topics.
Take care,

Anonymous said...

SubhanAllah, how the year has passed! That was horrible, the story of the Princess and the Pimple.

By the way, I sent you an email (about dentistry). It would be great if you could answer it. Jazakillahu khair!

Jenny said...

I enjoy all your posts and think you have a nice mix of topics.

But if you'd like some requests, here's mine: You had a picture on your photo blog a while back of an outdoor scene where the men were all praying while the women sit on park benches. I thought that was surprising and very strange and it really piqued my interest. Why is it that women (generally) do not pray in public? Would it be frowned upon if one of the women got down and prayed just like the men were doing in that square? Isn't performing salat taken quite seriously by most Saudis? I assume these women don't skip it entirely but pray when they get home, but if this is okay then why wouldn't it be okay to routinely save all your prayers for the end of the day? I'd love to hear your thoughts on this.

Layla said...

Hi Ciara and thanks for the comment! I'm glad you've found Blue Abaya useful and hopefully it will remain a good source of information for you once you've relocated over here :)

I have had so many requests about the maternity and childbirth options in Saudi that I ave planned a post on this in the near future, inshallah when I have more time on my hands from my very demanding kids :)

Layla said...

Hi Ildi! Not sure if I would be doing the Tuesday Ten posts again they do take some while to make because they each contain ten photos which all have to be watermarked and some maybe edited a little, so it's very time my life is really not that interesting right now, it consists of feeding, dressing, playing with and putting my kids to sleep.On top of that I spend a lot of time rocking, swinging, singing, bouncing, walking around with our very fussy infant 24/7. Not so exciting at all right :D Maybe when our life becomes more normal again and I get out of the house more (other than to the park) I will start again!

Layla said...

Hi there! Sorry, I am dragging way behind in replying to my emails so I haven't had time to get back to you on that. I can tell you right now that dentistry here in general is not as good as it is in Europe or west..I have some friends who wait until they get back to their home countries to have things done. For example a friend of mine told me just yesterday she had regular cleaning here in Saudi (in top hospital) for years, then had it done once back home in Canada and the dr there was horrified at the quality said they never had even cleaned under the gums which had caused huge problem and took four sessions to fix. Personally I had one of my tooth fillings come off and then refilled by three different dentists here (all were arabs) and the filling came off every time about a month after it was done, so now I'm waiting to do it in Finland even though its way more expensive there. I could tell you countless other examples of how poor the care is here but maybe you catch the have your check up and cleaning done before you come here, or do it on holidays.

Layla said...

Hi Jenny thanks for the feedback!!
In general if women do pray in public they will seek a spot where there' a wall behind them, in other words, that men can't walk behind them because of the awkward position, which is very much understandable. Sometimes you will see women praying in malls during prayer times. Most malls do have ladies mosque in them..but regardless you will see some women just stop in their footsteps and take out their prayer mats and pray on the corridors, next to the wall for more privacy. At least this is my observation, that they rather do it later in privacy (or not at all who knows) than do it in front of men.

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year!
I basicly enjoy reading what ever you write!
But since you asked...I especially enjoy reading about your real life stories and rants from life in the Kingdom and perhaps anything related to the visual art scene?.
As a Canadian expat, I can relate and take every opprotunity to share your blog with friends. I think your blog helps bring a fresh perspective to day to day life in KSA. You are certainly unique and have a finger on the pulse of KSA society regarding what is changing and what remains the same. IMHO You rock! :)

Sara T. said...

Hello!!!Hew year new readers! Hope this year to be even better that the previous and I hope everyone to change for the better. :)


Affinity for Modesty said...

I second that anon. More of your stories about your own experience please Allah dear. Perhaps about your lil prince and pray do tell me how you wean your baby of breastmilk...I would love to continue bfing my daughter but just in case of my milk supply drying up. Happy 2013!

Aafke-Art said...

Happy New Year, and I would like to see more pictures of horses!

Affinity for Modesty said...

I meant Laylah dear. Darn automatic correction.

Jerry Mc Kenna said...

I love all your posts, but if I had to pick one it would be about the morgue.

Jo said...

Hi. I think Arsb Princes Are cute but I am a a Christian and I am not rich. I Am not a supermodel either. How do you find them?