Everybody Get Footloose! with The Abu Dhabi Choral Group


I was a young girl in a Midwestern Baptist town in Illinois. A town filled with old blue haired ladies, dogs that nap in the street and a local preacher who relied upon the generosity of the parishioners for cookies and meatloaf dinners. It was a town not too dissimilar from Bomont. It was a stereotypical farm town upbringing with Levis, boots and beer, and all the crazy shenanigans that bored country kids get themselves into.

My high school crowd could easily be identified as those that would leave our community and those that would stay. In October 1984, just as the corn was harvested from the fields, Footloose came to our uniplex theater and provided those that would leave the hope that even small town rebels with a big city itch could have a future out there somewhere beyond the wheat and the soybean fields.

Fast forward 35 years and I am half way around the world, in the Middle East, at the New York University Arts Center watching a cast of 30-40 expats with a Russell Stovers box of accents, perform Footloose. A movie so Americana that I can smell the hay.

Continue reading “Everybody Get Footloose! with The Abu Dhabi Choral Group”

To All the Girls I’ve Loved Before

You might be surprised to know that the quality of the expat experience revolves around one thing and as it turns out this one thing is the glue, the ultimate party popper, and the generator of gargantuan good times. It’s the thing that keeps us sane. Continue reading “To All the Girls I’ve Loved Before”

Vote, Vote, Vote!

The Abu Dhabi PTA has been nominated to for the AHLAN! UAE 2015 The People’s Choice award for Best Blog! We are super happy about this and hoping to making it to the next level. Please vote for us. Click to take you to the AHLAN! website, register and vote! Your vote will enter you into a contest to win Dhs10,000. Thank you so very much!

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That’s a Pisser

images-3“That’s a real pisser!” Mini said to me.

Whoa…what do you mean that’s a real pisser? I am no Lily Librarian. I have seen and heard a fair amount in my life but I didn’t expect my ten year-old to use the word pisser straight in my face. Continue reading “That’s a Pisser”

International Women’s Day Interview



Interview with Ms. Gina Dillon

We start our series of Interviews for International Women’s Day with the founder of the blog The Abu Dhabi PTA

Name: Gina Dillon

Nationality: USA

Occupation: Writer, social innovator, and change maker.

Tell us a bit about yourself…
I am married to an incredibly smart and witty guy who is my perfect life partner. I have two boys who were born 20 years apart. I have two dogs and I have a soft spot for animals. I am a very curious person and I am always looking for new interests, new people and a new way to see the world. Continue reading “International Women’s Day Interview”

Fashion at the Westin

913d_jennifer-hawkins-australian-beauty-queen-miss-universe-fashion-showFebruary 5th at the Westin Resort in Abu Dhabi it was all about fashion, shopping and an evening of fun with the girls!

Image Events and Model Agency kicked off its 2015 production with a much-anticipated fashion extravaganza. In its second year, Fashion at the Westin has grown since its inaugural show last year and this year it was a packed house. Tickets sold out very quickly as the ladies of Abu Dhabi were very excited for its return. Some new faces, some returning faces, more vendors, but the same great fashion.

More than 300 guests were treated to a runway presentation of fashion trends from House of Fraser, Judith Hobby, sports wear from Lorna Jane, children’s wear from Chateau des Enfants, and a number of other local fashion designers. The audience was jammed full of well-dressed ladies each hoping for a chance to win the 10,000 dirham prize for the best dressed from Maison Hala.

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Models, including women, men and children strutted the catwalk in 11 different fashion labels while a lively DJ provided the musical backdrop for the show enhancing the fun factor as the guests were captivated by the display of color and creativity.

The evening began with a cocktail and canapé reception where attendees perused the local vendors. Popular items included hair products by Redken, the Shawleez, and a clever little clip that prevents your handbag from falling in the floorboard when you brake in your car — a crowd favorite! A number of the vendors also participated in the raffle with the grand prize from Etihad Airways providing a return trip ticket to select destinations in the UK.

If you have never attended Fashion at the Westin please plan to attend this annual event next February. It is a fantastic excuse for a GNO and a great place to bump into friends you haven’t seen in awhile.

Thanks Image Events and Model Agency for a great evening. See you again next year!

For more information of Image Model Agency please reach out to them at 056 353 6136 or info@imageevents.net

Indigo Indian Buffet


images-1Indigo Saturday brunch and the one-hundred mile tea.

I have been in love with India since I watched The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel and recently became intrigued with Indian food when I watched The 100 Foot Journey. Yes, I live vicariously through movies. Sometimes even Bollywood. Dreaming of the day that I can have an experience as equally exotic as I see in the on the screen. Continue reading “Indigo Indian Buffet”

Sushi Central

897fa7762a9e6565860099d6280c0ab7_400x400You may think all we do in Abu Dhabi is eat, eat, eat. But you’re wrong. We also talk about eating a lot too. And I guess like any vibrant large city in the world, we like to talk about new restaurants on the scene.

Enter Sushi Central. No, is not exactly new but has recently opened a new branch near the Mina and expanded delivery to Saadiyat and Yas Island — which is a big deal because the expat burbs are where some of the serious sushi eaters live. And we love high-end delivery! Continue reading “Sushi Central”

The Glamorous Life

entertainerLiving in possibly the world’s glitziest city takes cash. Cold. Hard. Cash. There might be an oil field a few kilometers from my villa but I am not on the payroll. So therefore, we expats have to find ways to make the biggest splash with the least amount of cash — because this awesome lifestyle doesn’t come cheap! Those gold flaked cappuccinos… well, they don’t grow on trees.

The expat secret to living the luxury lifestyle can be found in one little book or now that we are in 2015, should I say, one little mobile app. And everyone knows it. It’s called The Entertainer.  Continue reading “The Glamorous Life”

Women’s Work in the UAE

2593111251 Want to support women’s work in the UAE? Plan to attend this NYU sponsored event exploring the various ways women’s work in the UAE goes beyond “fixing” the women to transforming the contexts in which they live and work. Representatives from the education, entrepreneurship, private, and public sectors discuss cutting-edge research and private-public partnerships that support work-life balance strategies, nationalization efforts, and social policy aimed at encouraging women’s employment. In examining different ways to conceptualize women’s non-linear career paths, the panel moves away from simplistic stereotypes about women’s “preferences” or assumptions about their “choices” to a characterization of the micro mechanisms that facilitate their learning, career development, and long-term well-being.

Date January 11, 2015
Time 06:30pm – 08:00pm
Location NYUAD Saadiyat Campus, Conference Center

Fatima Al-Shamsi Deputy Vice Chancellor for Administration, Paris Sorbonne University Abu Dhabi
Rabea Ataya Founder and CEO, Bayt.com
Anisa Al-Sharif Entrepreneur and former Director of Policy and Strategy for Socioeconomic Development, The Executive Council, Dubai

Moderated by
May Al-Dabbagh Assistant Professor of Social Research and Public Policy, NYU Abu Dhabi

Please confirm your attendance to Maisoon Moubark Maisoon.moubark@edelman.com before January 8, 2015.

Image Credit: Niño Jose Heredia/©Gulf News