check out this yacht, or as my parents and i call them a yaa-chit. the louis vuitton trophy was going on the week were there. we could see the sailboats head out with their chase boats and then there were several yaa-chits with spectators. the brown boat is one of the spectator boats. i'd never seen a brown boat before...with the exception of race boats...so i had to take a pic. i also so a metallic blue boat that looked like it was straight out of a james bond movie. crazy!
one of the things we REALLY wanted to do while we were in dubai was dune bashing. what is dune bashing?? well...basically you hop on into a landcruiser and a dude takes you through the sand dunes. now this wasn't a nice leisurely sunday drive through the dunes, this was fast. jumping things, swerving all over the place, sliding down the dunes, sometimes sideways! it was crazy...scary...exhilarating...terrifying...hilarious and i would totally do it again! i don't have photos of the ride...i was busy video taping and trying not to wet myself! ha ha ha...i do have a pic of the sunset at the end of the ride.
after the ride, they dropped us of at a bedoin camp. we rode camels, you could try on arabic gear, get henna...try some sheesha and then they had a show. the show consisted of a dude spinning with this huge crazy skirt, a belly dancer and a fire ball dancer. i got pics of the fireball chic...but it was too dark for the others.
this whole middle east experience has been my first traveling out of the US. i've heard people say that you can always tell who the americans are. i've wondered why that's the case. well...i figured it out. we are LOUD!!! oh my gosh...we are so loud. or....maybe it was just us. ;) ha ha ha...ah...it was probably just us!
hung out with the ukeileys today. they are always fun and just a wee bit crazy. oh wait, that's pretty much just the mr. :)
here's a few fun pics from the session:
so...mr. u is quite the joker. this is just the teaser post...you'll have to come back for the 101 faces of mr. ukeiley. ;)
and look at the lovely pic of the kids with their native family. ha ha ha
the last pic is of the mrs. she's a yoga instructor and this is called the scrim pose. (a scrim is what photographers use to block/add light. ha ha ha. i think she's hired!!)
these next couple of pics are probably my most favorite so far. i've wanted to do something with this skull and cross bones and this was perfect!!!! check these guys out...
thanks so much ukeileys. i totally had fun with y'all...flies and all. :)
ok...so after the sky high experience of the burj khalifa...we decided to stick close to the beach for the next two days. i could have stayed there for the next 10 years and not have noticed one bit. well...maybe i would have noticed the sun burn. ;)
the water was perfect! is was wonderfully clear...sandy bottomed and small waves would glide by for the kids to play in when the boats would pass. heaven! 10 kids and 5 mommas on the beach and i'm happy to report no serious sunburns!
if you look at the horizontal photo of the beach, you can see the burj al arab in the distance. it's the seven star sail looking hotel that cost about $100 just to tour! rooms...$1500 per night and up ~ way up!
oh dubai...how i miss you!
happy thanksgiving to everyone!! i hope you have plenty to be thankful for today. :)
me? i'm thankful for my family...our new adventures...and to be back at work. so here's a quick post for the kings on this lovely thanksgiving morning.
it seems as if i'm finally finding some spots to hold family sessions around here. i have loved the gate in the first couple of pics ever since i spied it when we first arrived. it look so versace!!!! we also stumbled upon the awesome cityscape at the arad fort too! probably one of the most "romantical" spots. the lighting is so soft and purty. :)
can't wait to do more shoots!!! happy turkey day y'all!
i had the great pleasure of photographing the vandas this evening. being that we're in middle east, i find that it's appropriate to bring a little of the culture into a family session. when we first moved here, i found this gate and knew that it was going to become my new studio...of sorts. :) what i didn't know is that there's a bunch of murals on the same street! they are beautiful. i only used one on this session...but there are more to come!
thank you vandas for spending a bit of your afternoon with me. i had a ton of fun and your kids are sooooo sweet! here's your sneak peek...enjoy!!
drag you and your girl friends and all the kids to a foreign country, naturally! and that's exactly what we did!
all the children had this week off of school for what we call eid, part deaux. it's actually the second eid and it's when the folks make the hajj to mecca. we weren't making the hajj...so we decided to make a pilgrimage of sorts to dubai. our party consisted of 5 ladies and 10 children between the ages of 3 and 10.
i have one word to describe our trip... indiscreet! ha ha ha...hard not to be noticed when you're gaggle is wandering around town. ;)
you can look forward to several posts as there is too much good info to share from this trip. we'll start with day 1:
sara and her two kids and me and my two kids headed to dubai...a day earlier than the rest of the gang. sara and i wanted to hit the burj khalifa, the tallest building in the world, and get a head start on the party. and so we did...
here's some background info on the burj khalifa:
here are some of my fav pics from the burj khalifa...there's a few...sorry. :)
i noticed the building when we were walking through the parking garage. :)
this was one of the models in the lobby...
the observation deck is on the 124th floor...this was the rest of the building...
the burj khalifa on the left and part of dubai mall on the right....
check out all the people on the bridge!!
more dubai to come!!
after i received quite a few inquiries...i decided to get back in the saddle and start working again. jason says i need to earn my keep. after i wrastled him to the ground...i agreed. ;) ha ha ha...
my first session back was one of my good friends g and her family. we set out on the town to see if we could find some cool spots to shoot. i think we managed to find a couple. let me tell ya...it's a little awkward shooting here. i like moms and dads holding hands...canoodling...stealing a quick kiss. pda is frowned upon in these parts...so we'll stick to hand holding and add a nice gaze into each others eyes instead. ;) no need to get arrested this early in our stay. ha ha ha...
so take a peek at g. and her wondeful family...
he went to bed and bumped his head and ended floating down three blocks by morning. ;)
i think it's an understatement to say this country can not handle rain. we're not talking about frog-drowners. we're just talking about a regular ole' rain shower. the rain started well into the evening yesterday...an it was soooo nice to step outside and listen to it as it hit the marble. all i could think was..."damn...that's gonna be slip'ry." i went back inside and wouldn't you know...both satellites were out. that means no tv and no internet. now what the heck am i supposed to do??? it was only 8pm! so i cuddled up next to the kids in bed and went to sleep. [jason was out of town...he missed the whole show!]
we woke up the next morning and everything was as usual. we ran around the house like crazy people trying to get ready for school. i shoved the kids out the door and onto the bus and then i took off to meet a friend. 1/2 way there, i started to get calls that the kids were being put back onto the bus and sent home. school was closing for the day. apparently all the water was outside the school...and they had no running water actually in the building. no running water=a big mess=kids go home. so i wheeled around and went home to catch the kids.
i guess it's a good thing i didn't end up going to town. the whole place was under water! i didn't believe it but people said there was waist deep water in the city. it was better to have a boat today than a car. one of my friends was kind enough to email me her photos so i could share them.
these photos are courtesy of my blinding blond friend that took me to baghdad to get bread. ;)
the first photo is one of the roads in jaffair, near the base. it's lookin' kind of deep. the next photo is an empty lot that people usually park in. looks much better for water skiing today. nice and glassy. ;) the third photo is the "used car lot" outside of TGI Fridays. i guess car shopping will be put on the back burner for today....
so in lieu of heading to town to float down the streets, we decided to hang out and have a day long playdate. :) hopefully everything dries out tonight and we are back to normal tomorrow...but i'm not holding my breath. ;)
or at least that's what it looked like! my lovely friend gretchen and i stuffed all our kids in my car and she proceeded to direct us to this great bread shop she'd found. now how she found this place, i have no idea. i'm starting to wonder what the woman does when her kids are at school. ;) ha ha ha...
so...she took me down this central street in hidd...the area where we live. she told me to turn left down this one small road. ok...then the roads started getting smaller and smaller with every turn. there was a lot of weaving going on as the road was barely wide enough for my little car. things got a bit complicated when there was also a car parked on the side of the ally. so after the weaving and squeezing...she tells me "drive up that curb right there." What????? i think, "in front of the abandoned building?" so up on the curb the subaru goes...it's supposed to go off road, right??!!
as soon as we stopped EVERYONE turned around to check us out. it didn't help that gretchen's blond hair is so freakin' bright that it was reflecting light at a nearly blinding levels. ha ha ha...we didn't dare get out of the car...so i was relieved when the "car hop" came by and asked for our order. apparently, the curb we parked on was the drive thru!! we patiently waited for our bread...and busted out some cash so we could be ready. the man came back to the car door and told us in arabic how much we owed. i think he was talking arabic...because neither one of us could understand him! we basically just held out money and he took what was due to him. that total was only 1BD. we basically paid $2.65 for 8 big pieces of homemade flat bread...plain and with cheese. it was so cheap i felt like i was steeling it!!
after our transaction was done, we hopped off the curb and headed home...down skinnier and skinnier roads. things i learned on this little trip: our ghetto and the ghettos here are two VERY differnt things and we were actually very safe and...buy a scarf for gretchen so her hair doesn't blind people when we're trying to be inconspicuous. ;)
for payback, i made her take pictures. ha ha ha
the girls and i managed to absolutely DEVOUR one whole piece of the cheese bread on the way home. :) ooooh so good!
the mcarabia!!! jason tried it but i was too "chicken". ha ha ha...as much as i can tell, it's two round pieces of grilled chicken with lettuce and a special sauce. the jury is still out on what the special sauce is. i think this is mcdonald's version of the shawarma. a shawarma is shaved chicken (or meat ;) ) with lettuce, special sauce and...wait for it...french fries all wrapped up in a pita. it took me a good 5 months to try one. not my cup of tea because i don't dig the fries, sauce or warm lettuce. so...i'll just ask for chicken in a pita instead!