Friday, June 20, 2008

Grandma Minnie

Last weekend we attended Mike's great grandma Minnie's funeral in Murrieta California.
I only met her a couple of times, but she seemed like such a sweet sweet lady. It was fun to get together with all of the family, and learn more about Grandma Minnie at her funeral.

I loved what they did with the casket. They had all of the kids, grandkids, and great grandkids put their handprint and a little farewell note to Grandma Minnie.

Somehow these boxing gloves turned up, and the boys went at it.

Since we were in California, Mike's parents were nice enough to take us to Knotts Berry Farm for the day! I had never been there before; only to six flags, so it was so fun!

I thought this Xcelerator ride was pretty intense! (I did NOT try to make my face look like that. A completely natural reaction.) haha Mike's little cousin Rocky is sitting right next to me. She was hard-core! Only 10 years old, and she went on this ride twice, and on the Supreme Scream free-fall twice!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Egypt

We stayed in a resort in Taba Egypt on the Sinai Peninsula, next to a bunch of other resorts. There was no residential towns anywhere nearby. I guess this is the tropical vacation spot for Russians and other Europeans, whereas Americans go to Cancun or Hawaii typically.
If you look at the mountains behind these resorts, it is totally barren. Not a sign of greenness anywhere!
We got to go snorkeling on the Red Sea! (Gulf of Aqaba) and we saw this Octopus that was 2-3 feet long! It kept changing colors to blend in with the reef. p.s. the water was freezing

At 10pm one night our group loaded up the buses and went to the base of Mount Sinai. Our goal was to get to the top in time to watch the sunrise. So, we took a two-hour camel ride up 2/3 of the way, then we hiked up about 750 steps by foot. A camera flash would hurt the Camels eyes at night, thus the not-so clear picture...
We arrived at the top of the mountain by about 3am...the sun doesn't come up til 6:30am... so we took a little nap on the comfortable, pillowy rock.
The sunrise was INCREDIBLE! Made it allll worth it.
Oh and there was someone that LIVED up on the top of the mountain! it was just behind this little build-up of rocks. it was so weird when we heard some noises...it kind of freaked me out cuz I thought the person might be mad that we were making so much noise...but we were able to leave unscathed.
When we got back to our hotel that afternoon, we definitely took a 7-hour nap...

This was one of the many vendors at every site we visited. They put the stuff on you to try and get you to buy it. This guy brought his prices down from $5 a hat to $2 for this lovely white hat.
The kids are adorable!

The pyramids of Giza! This is Jake
The stones were HUGE


The Sphinx
We had the opportunity of taking a day trip to Jordan where we visited Petra. It was remarkable! We got to ride horses some of the way.
We walked through these canyons, and once we got through them, we came to...
This! it was carved into the sandstone rock! the intricate details were phenomenal. It is one of the new 7 wonders of the world. A lot of this area is still being excavated.


This is what the streets of Cairo look like. This was the only thing we saw as we were driving from the airport to our hotel. Our tour guides kept telling us that our hotel was nice, and we were all thinking the same thing when Jake voiced it saying, "Dad I can't even picture our hotel being nice."
It was the nicest hotel we had stayed in on our whole trip. Such a stark contrast to the streets of Cairo. This was a photo from our room on the 9th floor looking down at the pool. The pyramid thing was the fitness center.
They even had my name on the hotel phone! and when we got a call from Larry and Jakes room, it said their name too! (I'm easily amused...)
The best part about it was there was a mall right next to it, with American food!! this was the first time in 3 weeks that we had a taste of American food again. We were ecstatic as you can see. it was hilarious how desperate we were. I feel for all of you foreign missionaries that have to go two whole years! I don't think I could do it!

Jake took a bite of Larry's Sbarro's pizza. Don't worry, that was just our pre-appetizer before our appetizer and meal at Chili's followed by our dessert at Cinnabon. haha

The only picture I got of the Nile River was from inside the bus, but it was beautiful!
So I totally thought that my Egypt post wasn't going to be as long, but I guess I was just thinking optimistically. I decided not to post pictures of some of the ancient Egyptian temples that we visited. (Luxor, Carnak) simply because the pictures probably aren't as exciting if you weren't there. Also in Israel I forgot to post that we visited Nazareth where Jesus spent the early years of his life, and we also visited the site where David slew Goliath! Both exciting sites.
Anyway, I promise there are no more trip posts. These have all been too long, but I had such an amazing experience!

Back on EgyptAir for our flight home!