Monday, June 30, 2008


Katie Turns The Big 1-2!
This is a Happy Birthday shout out to my most favorite little sis... and I'm not just saying that because she is my only little sister! I do miss those chubby little cheaks and I can't believe she is almost a teenager! She is still just as cute and always willing to play the nintendo Wii with Clark and I! Love ya Katie Bug!

Sunday, June 29, 2008


My parents continue to amazing me with their love and devotion to the family. They spent their anniversary hosting the Irvine reception for Brian and Jackie. Thanks for all your love and support and setting a wonderful example on a happy successful marriage. Photos from the reception will be posted later.

Happy Birthday Koebe and Jaxson

Max and Chance
Grizzly Adams (or his brother Matt)
Your Pal Roland
Katie and pops
Tyler and Max

Yesterday Norda and I went to Matt and Kim's to help celebrate the birthdays of Koebe (July 6th) and Jaxson (June 28th). In addition to the visiting on their shady lawn and eating cake and ice cream it gave me a chance to play around with the digital camera. Unfortunately some of the candids photos didn't do justice to everyone so Lorie, Laura, Clark, Allison, Norda and I are not included in this post. I also haven't found out how to arrange the spaces between pictures (Bob has to do the editing) so what you see is what you get. Matt sits pretty well with a torn posterior horn of the medial meniscus in his right knee but will have surgery to get it "fixed" on July 15th so we wish him well.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Ski Dubai and other Arabian adventures

Here are a few photos (out of 1,800) of my travels in Arabia.

First up is Ski Dubai. It is an indoor ski resort. For $50 I got two hours of skiing, boots, poles, pants and jacket (no gloves or hats--I thought I was tough but it was pretty cold) . A woman from the Philippines help me get my clothing, an Egyptian man helped with equipment and lift attendants were from India and Bulgaria. I rode up on the lift with someone from Ireland, England and Alabama.
The rental skis and the groomed corduroy snow. The possy would have enjoyed the ski conditions. It was 40 degrees centigrade (104 F) outside with high humidity
The view from the top.
Mid mountain. The skiing was actually better than expected. I even got some air on this dog leg curve and bump.
From the bottom.
Local Emiratee parents watching their kids in the tubing and tobogganing part of the resort.
The upper part of the "mountain"
A Lebanese restaurant at the base of the resort. My colleague and I treated a former Jordanian student (Sulaf) of mine who now lives in Dubai to a wonderful late lunch.
The huge and lavish Mall of the Emirates that includes Ski Dubai
Burg Dubai. A seven star hotel on a man-made island. We had a seven course afternoon tea in the large atrium of the hotel. This time Sulaf treated (ouch to her pocketbook, but there was no way to turn down Arab hospitality).
Main street Dubai. All of the buildings are less than 10 years old and it goes on and on along the Gulf coast.
The almost completed royal mosque of Abu Dhabi. The Emir wants it to rival the Taj Hahal.
Inside the mosque.
Camels and dunes on the edge of the empty quarter in southern United Arab Emirates
the dunes of Arabia
Southern Oman near Salalah. One of several possible sites for the land bountiful.
Kor Rori--another possible site of Bountiful. I am standing on the edge of the archaeological remains of a tel (hill) of one of the main cites of the famed frankincense trade. The inlet would have been a great place to build a boat and the cliff in the distance would have been a possible place for throwing righteous brothers into the sea.
A frankincense tree with two amber droplets of frankincense oozing out (which I harvested)
The Thursday camel market in Sinaw Oman
The Sultan Qaboos mosque in Muscat Oman
Four wheeling up an over the Rock Mountains of Oman
Petra Jordan.

Monday, June 23, 2008