big news…and more big news!

April 15, 2016

Things have been kind of quiet around here on the blog for awhile. Lately, I’ve been doing good if I crank out a post a month. Sorry about that. But I’m still here. And plan to be for a good long while, inshallah.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Truth be told, there have been a lot of things going on in my life, currently resulting in a couple of rather major bits of news to share. And each one of them honestly warrants a blog post in its own right, but you know what, I think I’ll be a wild child and share ’em both in this one post.

Okay, so the first one might not be news to you if you follow me on Instagram or Facebook. But it’s so great, it bears repeating: Lavender is going to be a big sister!

Yep, we are excitedly awaiting the arrival of another little Mostafa. I’m pregnant, expecting, with child, or however you’d prefer to phrase it. Tin roof rusted. I’m knocked up, y’all. And it’s awesome. I’ve been dealing with the standard first trimester nausea, exhaustion, emotional rollercoaster, etc., but of course, every second is totally worth it. I’m due in October. Pumpkin baby!

Lavender and I lit out of Riyadh a bit earlier for our summer in the Ozarks than we had originally planned, and the pregnancy is the reason. We’re currently at home in Missouri, but we’ll be on our way back home to Riyadh in mid-July, along with Mr. Mostafa, who is going to join us for some vacation time with us before we go. I’m technically good to fly until well into my third trimester, but…you know, flying from mid-America to the Middle East is a bit more of a major journey than say, flying from St. Louis to Cleveland. There’s basically no way for me to get from the Ozarks to Riyadh in less than 24 hours. And 24 hours is plenty of time to have a baby, you know? We didn’t think it was a great idea to risk making that huge journey when I was super pregnant, if we could avoid it.

So if it seems like I’ve been hibernating in these past few months…well, that’s because I’ve basically been hibernating in these past few months. First trimester fatigue is no joke, man. When Lavender sleeps, I sleep. And when Saleh gets home from work and goes on Lavender duty, I sleep. Basically, for the past few months, when not parenting or doing the other minimum tasks necessary to qualify as a functional human being, I’ve been sleeping…that is, when not actively willing myself not to puke. But I’m heading out of the first trimester now, so I can feel my energy levels rising again, and I’m floating into that second trimester gastronomic euphoria where I can eat (almost) whatever I please after three months of looking at every food with one eyebrow raised in an attempt to assess its potential for digestive disaster. All of which is great. But even if none of that was happening, I’d be fine with that, as long as the pumpkin baby is okay. It has been a painful, difficult pregnancy in other ways (the saga of which I will surely write about later). But whatever. It doesn’t matter. Because we are so blissfully happy to be welcoming this tiny new person into our little club.

The second piece of news is…drumroll, please…inshallah, after four years of living in the third floor of my in-laws’ house, we’ll be bringing the pumpkin baby home to our very own house! At the end of last year, Mr. Mostafa and I finally found the little villa that was totally meant for us. It took us awhile to get to that point. But we eventually found the perfect place that both fit in our budget and hit every single thing that we really wanted in a house. A bathtub (people who know me well understand how major this is. I need a bathtub in my life consistently, y’all). Grass (when my mom came to visit a few months ago and we took her to see the house, she excitedly said, “You guys are going to have to get a little push mower to cut your grass patch!” “Mom,” I said indignantly, “don’t talk about our yard that way!”). Big windows that let in lots of natural light (even though they also mean more cleaning and higher electricity bills because bigger windows=more dust and less efficient air conditioning). And simple, clean finishing that lets us make the house our own (no leopard-print wall tile in the kitchen, thank you very much…which, as we unfortunately discovered during our house search, is most definitely a thing).

So when we found this perfect house, we bought it. And we couldn’t be happier with the decision so far. It’s new construction, so, as anyone who has ever bought a villa in Riyadh knows, that means it came to us completely empty–no window blinds or shutters, no appliances, no kitchen, and probably most crucially, no air conditioners (because most homes in Saudi Arabia utilize ductless mini-split air conditioners in each room). So that means there has been a lot of work to do in the house before we can move in. And we’re not even super close yet, but that’s okay. We’ll get there. We’ve got the window blinds and shutters and the air conditioners installed, and we’ve been moving boxes of our stuff over the past few months.

These are the first two boxes we moved. I had to take a picture of them for posterity. It was a huge moment, man.

We’ve been also having regular “picnics” at our new house; we grab a pizza or cheeseburgers or kabsa and go sit in the floor of our living room, or outside in the hosh, on picnic blankets and eat. And it’s wonderful. Because it’s our house.

And if all goes according to plan, Mr. Mostafa will be overseeing the installation of our kitchen and delivery of our furniture while Lavender and I are in Missouri. So when we get back home to Riyadh in July, we should be ready to move the remainder our things out of our little third floor apartment in my in-laws’ house and start our life in our very own home in Riyadh!

So…yeah. That’s a quick roundup of what’s going on in the Hunter-Mostafa world, and it’s a busy but happy time, mashallah. I’m sure I’ll be writing much more about the progress of these things in the upcoming months, so get ready for that. But for now, thanks for tuning in to read about all of our Mostafa madness!



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  • D Alenezi

    Congratulations on the big news — both of the big news’es! However, this post leads me to a couple of odd questions; does Saudi Arabia not give its citizens a plot of land (free) and an interest free building loan? Or, a government built villa on an interest free multi-generation loan? And Saudi Arabia doesn’t have subsidized electricity and water? I admit, I am a bit surprised by this. In Kuwait each citizen gets a villa and virtually no cost for electricity and water (OK, some cost but people pay the bill about every 10 years and it’s about $100). I know the UAE does even better by their citizens so it wouldn’t surprise me if Saudi does less, but it is surprising they do nothing at all. :( Can’t wait to see photos of the new little cuddle baby!

  • disqus_r4xKUKoSXR

    That is wonderful. You are blessed. Can I ask how much you purchased the home for, and did you pay cash or can you take a loan.