Sunday, October 07, 2007

boots of my historic past & prestent

There is a pebble I could not avoid floating in my boots; it seemed like with each shuffle in the dust of that morning walk I could not escape irritation. Upon return to the house I let the dog in and I took a close look at my foot wear. A stress mark of long ago finally wore through leaving not just a hole in the boot but a river of jagged edge near 2 inches long.

I'd bought these solid old leather hiking boots before I turned 19. I'm 36 now. They've graced my feet on more then an epic journey through the Wasatch Mountains. They've kicked up dust in Senegal and Ghana. They've courted a trail in Poland. I think I've even polished 'em up before to wear to a job interview. They held my feet on the deck of a pitching ship when coming into port.

My boots define me. I do have other trinkets from lands of distant eras of my life. I may seek to have 'em repaired. I may just wax 'em up one more time. I will though put them near my fire place to hang, a picture of who I am.

Monday, October 01, 2007

forgiveness and friendship

I am hoping that a message of peace would be conveyed with my last post. Please shut me out for a while but don't shut out others. I want peace and forgiveness.

I simply want to stand next to you as a friend. I will fight for friendship more then any other aspect of my life. Friendship for me cuts across ageless boundaries of culture and religion. If I invite you to stay at my place or say call me anytime - that means you mean something to me. There are very few people I've repealed this from.(only one couple in the thousands of people I know).

Forgiveness and grace go hand in hand with correction and discipline in the lines of friendship.

A few years back (now over 10) I began to hang out with a group that met in the dining room of the Anastasis at 10pm. We'd write letters, write in our journals, read books & the Bible. We did everything and anything together. However there was one individual I didn't get a long with nor liked, so when ever he showed up I left. As the seasons change and the group began to disperse because commitments were up or new people came in, little did I realize I shut out several close friends because I left when this individual came around. I recognize it as a mistake. I have not made this mistake since.

Though I don't like someone or someone doesn't like me these days I will not leave a group, but I will also not put up with that crap. It bugs me to no end that either the other individual will not come to me or will let me come to them to resolve the difference or resolve to let there be an issue between us. I can live with people hating me. What I can't live with is not knowing from them why they hate me.

Forgiveness and grace go hand in hand with correction and discipline in the lines of friendship.

Friday, September 28, 2007

foot in mouth flare up...

Words and stories can mix and be mixed up by close friends and those far off. They can be taken as stories or as shots to the heart. I recently told a story of a friend (fellow shipmate) in a group in which I tied it back into the group. What I thought was over and behind an 'us' who aren't close enough to call an 'us' of friends I retro-think my words is not. Instead of a funny antecedent about an untimely word and the repercussion there of; I fear I shot my friend in the heart with an arrow that bore down heavier then a ton of bricks crushing me out while damaging any vein of relationship beyond association. I've suffered from a cold shoulder before because I spoke out of turn. This time I simply ask, of my friend, give me a chance to dig myself deeper & grant me the grace to mess up again.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Lea & Rob

Just shot a wedding out at the University of Utah's Red Butte Gardens. It was simply fantastic. I'd recommend having Lea plan your wedding to. Not only is she a simply gorgeous bride, she kept everything simple. I'm working the images now. I'm going to post a few here then over to another site I use occasionally for sets. Stay tuned.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007


If you don't recognize this pirate and you work for ORANGE, are you sure you are there?

The company that I do work with presently supports a wide range of non-profit organizations, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation is one of the biggest organizations. Recently JDRF held a big awareness event at Salt Lake City's Wheeler Farm. I've posted a few images here to share but most of my images are found at PreyingJaws on Flickr. I choose flickr because you do not need to be a member to view the images.

Enjoy surfing my images.

*the first image is VP Steve
** Pre-Walk warm ups

Monday, August 20, 2007

An afternoon Hike

A lame afternoon turned around as I decided to find a trail without cars parked at the base. Driving up Big Cottonwood Canyon every trail head I passed had 3 to a dozen vehicles. I pondered where could I go. Then passing the lower Solitude Ski Resort entry I saw not 3 but one and this guy was leaving. I pulled over. I've heard the Silver Fork hike begins at the western edge of this parking lot. I jumped the gate and headed for the forest service road. I got lost on private property of the Silver Fork summer residence road. Not wanting to chance anything I doubled back and hit the cat track that wraps around to the Honeycomb lift. Later when I read my guide book I could have stayed on the private road without trouble. Anyways I wanted something short and without people. That is what I got besides one group of mountain bikers coming down, two bull moose in velvet, and a dozen bald eagles flying out of camera range (I only had the 28-80). I passed by groves of quaky aspen still with summer green. I rounded the area by stopping at an abandon mining camp. On the way down caught a brilliant sunset of colors in the clouds and still made it down before dark.
Ah a lovely hike for my only day off this week.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Ready Set Run

Ready Set Run, originally uploaded by preyingjaws.

Two Mentos Reps at the Park City Kimbal Art's Festival demonstrate their product's ability to create a soda fountain. Unlike the rest of us who haven't done this, these gals avoided the ensuing soda eruption.

Obama Speaks

Obama_IGP_2007_08_5__8212, originally uploaded by preyingjaws.

Prez Canidate Obama make a honk-n-wave appearance at Park City's Kimbal Junction on Sunday Aug 5, 2007. He spoke briefly about what his campaign is about before dashing off to a fund raiser.

Monday, June 18, 2007

keys n cleaning

With the key given to me, I slowly insert it into the door.
Opening the door for the first time as my place,
I paused to savor the moment & take a pix.

The scent of the shampoo'd carpet greeted me,
the cool of the AC washed over me.
I flipped off my teva's
I felt the dried carpet.

Tromping up the stairs
I looked right, left, and straight
Three bedrooms.

I ducked back down the stairs,
I spun into the kitchen,
glanced into the 1/2 bath & laundry room.

Reaching into the garage
I felt for the opener
The door moaned upwards

Light flooded the townhouse,
I paused again.
God I want this place to be...

I grabbed somethings out of my car
The first things I set out were cleaning supplies
The most important things though
I grabbed
were three books
My Bible, EM Bounds Complete Works on Prayer and My Utmost for His Highest
Holiness, Prayerfulness, Devotion.

I set out to clean,
Carpets to vacuum, shelves to wipe down, drawers to wash out
Scrub scrub scrub
How could a seller, leave a place that they wouldn't want to move straight into?
All is well.

As a rule there are only two times a place is truly clean:
the day you move in
the day you move out
all other times are 'just tidy'

My place
My home to be...
Lord so much...
So far...
What possibilities...

Does this invalidate my goals, dreams, or plans?
Not a chance.
I do want to return to missions.
I do want to say I Do
I do want to finish what I've set out to do.
In my place.

The key it turns,
opening a new beginning for me.

My Ring...

john 15:5

My ring is fading in detail, over the years I've banged it against the steel hull of the ship I sailed with while watching dolphins in the Pacific, kneaded it through loaves of bread dough (yes, I washed my hands with a scrub brush before I did so), scrubbed my hands raw after working with paint. It's fading and broken.

This detail though remains, I bought it on the 4th of July from a biker booth at the Freedom Festival in Duluth MN while I was with my roomie & shipmate of the Caribbean Mercy. The original significance is still there too. John 15:5 (NIV) "I am the vine you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing." I've since given up on wearing chains around my neck. I don't like how chains cut into me while I pack a camera. I am too frugal to get a tat. I do though want to share the bit of my life few people ask beyond "Nice ring, can I see it?" This is how I visually show what I believe. I wear this broken, fading ring with a grape vine.

Details of the pix. Taken with a cell phone. I played with positioning and a small flash light on my dinning room table.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Cancer Remains...

My evening seemed to be built around this one item. I kept looking for opportunities to see people pause by and look at it. I kept looking for pixs of people taking time to calibrate life and to remember life. I encourage everyone to slow down and build a relationship or two and keep them strong. I was close to her. I will by faith in Christ see her again, until then I have memories of our differences of which we were very similar...

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Gas Price War

This is my response to the "Gas Price War" e-mail/movement that is going around at the current time...

Hey Dude,

Think about it...
Have you ever tried a 'spending fast' where you did not spend any money for a day or a week? What happened? Did you not spend more then what you expected to the day before or the day after because you needed an extra (what ever)?

The same thing goes with the Gas Price War thing you are promoting. People are going to spend more either the day before or the day after.

The only way to 'hurt' gas companies is to ditch the gas powered mechanics. Can you do that?

If I could find away not to ride my bike through a bad neighborhood to and from work, I'd do it. One season a few years ago I saved $100 in gas over a 2 (two) month period just because i did not drive to the short places, I only drove to those places that were over 10 miles away and only then did I go there once a week and that was actually 24 miles one way or 30 the other way (route depending).

IF you could convince people to ride their bikes everywhere or to take alternate transportation, then yes the Gas Price War would work. Take a look at history with the Civil Rights movement in the 50's & 60's where the 'Blacks" (I'm not trying to be racist here) chose to boycott the mass transit system in the USA. That hurt the companies, some folded & were bailed out by the local government. A boycott like that would hurt the Gas companies today & it would make the government look seriously at promoting alternate fuels & alternate sources of energy.


-----Original Message-----

Subject: Gas Price War

GAS WAR - an idea that WILL work

Join the resistance!!!! I hear we are going to hit close to $4.00 a
gallon by next summer and it might go higher!! Want gasoline prices to
comedown? We need to take some intelligent, united action. Phillip
Hollsworth offered this good idea.

This makes MUCH MORE SENSE than the "don't buy gas on a certain
day" campaign that was going around last April or May! The oil
companies just laughed at that because they knew we wouldn't continue to "hurt"
ourselves by refusing to buy gas. It was more of an inconvenience to us
than it was a problem for them.

BUT, whoever thought of this idea, has come up with a plan that
can really work. Please read on and join with us! By now you're probably
thinking gasoline priced at about $1.50 is super cheap. Me too! It
is currently $2.79 for regular unleaded in my town. Now that the oil
companies and the OPEC nations have conditioned us to think that the cost
of a gallon of gas is CHEAP at $1.50 - $1.75, we need to take aggressive
action to teach them that BUYERS control the marketplace..... not sellers.
With the price of gasoline going up more each day, we consumers need to take action.
The only way we are going to see the price of gas come down is if we hit someone in
the pocketbook by not purchasing their gas! And, we can do that
WITHOUT hurting ourselves. How? Since we all rely on our cars, we can't just stop
buying gas. But we CAN have an impact on gas prices if we all act
together to force a price war.

Here's the idea:

For the rest of this year, DON'T purchase ANY
gasoline from the two biggest companies (which now are one), EXXON and MOBIL.
If they are not selling any gas, they will be inclined to reduce their prices.
If they reduce their prices, the other companies will have to follow
suit. But to have an impact, we need to reach literally
millions of Exxon and Mobil gas buyers. It's really simple to do! Now, don't wimp
out at this point..... keep reading and I'll explain how simple it is
to reach millions of people.

I am sending this note to 30 people. if each person sends this to 10 people,
the that's 300 people ... and those 300 send it to
at least ten more (300 x 10 =3,000)..and so on, by the time the message
reaches the sixth group of people, we will have reached over THREE
MILLION consumers. If those three million get excited and pass this on to
ten friends each, then 30 million people will have been contacted! If
it goes one level further, you guessed it..... THREE HUNDRED MILLION PEOPLE!!!

How long would all that take? If each of us sends
this e-mail out to ten more people within one day of receipt, all 300 MILLION
people could conceivably be contacted within the next 8 days!!!

Acting together we can make a difference. If this makes
sense to you, please pass this message on. I suggest that we not buy

Monday, April 30, 2007

Tour de Cure

American Diabetes Foundation will host it's annual Tour de Cure in various regions around the country this summer. Last summer my dad and I volunteered for the event with the Miata Club of Utah; half of the Miata Club rode the other half provided on the road support. Road Support is fun because I got to see the riders in various stages of excitement and exhaustion. In various places the Club would stand/park near various road hazards like Rail Road Crossings (one in experience rider lost it on a crossing & needed medical attention); sometimes provided directions at odd turns; provide a quick tire repair (I did a MacGyver on a sidewall repair near Golden Spike, which lasted the next 60 miles for the rider); and unfortunately provide road side medical support until EMTs can arrive in the case of one rider who took an unusually hard spill.
I also took pictures. Often over my shoulder as we drove past. Other Club members shot as well. The official images are here.

This event is for the support of finding a cure for Diabetes. Diabetes has inflicted its pain into my family both my Grandfather died from complications resulting from the disease and Aunt is dealing with it now. I also have friends who have it. I encourage you to look into your local ride or into supporting the American Diabetes Association.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007


The toxic blare of sirens pierced the silent night above the lazy evening traffic. Gently I sat of all places here at my computer enjoying the night of surfing & pondering going to bed. The sirens continued. Damn there close, to close. I went to the window only to see a column of gray gas rising above the tree line thick, unwavering against the shadow of the night scape. Bubble gum wrapper lights danced between the trees and buildings I could see. The neighbor above stepped out onto her tiny deck talking on her cell saying I see flames looks like a house on the other side of the 'Street.' Do I grab my jacket & dodge traffic with my camera or do I just set here, I pondered. At last watching from my window the gray turned to white the sirens died down I stooped praying the family that just lost everything.
This morning an annoying fly drove me from my coffee. What the hell is this buzz going on. I did grab my shoes and headed out the door. A news 'choper flew circles around last nights fire scene. Damn buzzards, doesn't this family have enough hardship now without you pointing it out to everyone who watches your show, I cursed under my breath.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007


I typically don't like to use this site as a repeater site but when I came across this article I wanted to share it. The reason being is I don't want my public stuff to be criticized as a fake by me or others. Now that a little bit of math can do some looking at the images well let it be known the geeks are at it again...



Monday, March 05, 2007


I always feel like a coffee shop philosopher every time I pull out my pda to write in a coffee shop. My trusty mug of black and my danish along side - gulp - visor prism. This morning I am lazy. Just to not give a damn worthy to make my own coffee, heck, I even drove to the starbarfs around the corner.
What draws me into this state? What drew me into the state of passing out crying last night? Or the state of walking out of work yesterday? Death. Death. The loss of a close friend on Friday. The loss of innocence of others. The loss of dealing with emotions past. I've not looked at literally thousands of pictures both on my pc and in my head of the friend I lost yesterday, of the friend I lost in August, of those I lost six years ago.
I don't want your sympathy, I just don't want to hear it. I want you to sit by me. I want you to be quiet near by. Listen to my breathing. Listen to the quiver in my voice. Listen to the tears in my story. Cry, cry, cry, cry not for me, not for the family, not for them, cry for yourself, cry for your family, cry for your friends. Christ said 'weep not for me' as he was burdened with his execution minutes away from his own death.
Religion and philosophy don't help. Faith and hope don't put a stop to the void. Friends move away and others return. That is easy. The death though is complete separation. The end of the relationship is final. There are no more pictures. There are no more stories. No more smiles, hard times, big heart felt thanks, no more slap on the backs, jokes, nothing nothing else to look forward to. It's a complete END.
There are others who were closer to my friend. There are others who have known him longer, etc.
How many though know the intimacy of death? How many know love unearthly riped away? How many know how to 'keep it together' when it is all falling a part? How many know what falling a part is like when others say it's time to be together? It's a personal struggle. It's a family struggle. It's a community struggle. It's all messed up and yet every piece is exactly where it needs to be.
The wound need not heal. The perspective needs to change. If the answer sought not meets the question asked; change the question until the question gets the answer sought. If the treatment doesn't work, try another treatment. Re-examine the problem. Keep moving yet stop. Stop and yet keep moving.
What then do I want to take away? Definitely not coffee shop philosophy. Definitely not an empty cup of coffee. Honestly, what I want to take away is what I do to the next level. I want to step it up. Live life more by drawing closer into my friends. Live life more by giving closer to others. There is that next level I can go for with the things I already do.
Loss sucks no mater what. What I can do is glean from my friend's life those qualities I see as important to him and make them my own. What I can do is to challenge myself to take up those qualities I saw in him that I admire. What I can do is to step up to the next level those things we enjoyed together. That is that is the quiver in my voice I want to share. That is...

Saturday, March 03, 2007



I know that getting things moving again isn't easy. I'm irritated. I'm pissed. I'm devistated. A vast range of emotions are running through my heart right now. I got a call this morning about Micah Coleman. He died yesterday in surgery. He was in the process of getting a new liver. I am going through my images now to find pictures of him. I've pulled a few images. I don't have many. It's like an unwritten rule for photogs; you don't take pixs of other photogs unless the situation warrent it.

What I am irritated most of is with the death. I want to raise my fist at GOD. I want to know why must the young die. I can understand the death of old people. Old people's bodies are worn out. They have lived life. It's time for them to move on. What I don't get is for young people to die. I've known one to many young people who've gotten sick and died. Up and Died. WHY?

Cheif Dave told me the story of his late wife Gigi - the lady who was a thorn in my side while on the Caribbean Mercy ages ago - I also gave her great respect and helped her out when ever I could. It was said of Gigi if you needed a wedding dress tell her and a few hours later she'd bring it to you. Cheif, he told me that every day he had with her was grace. His daughter feared that she'd loose her mom before she was 10. Gigi died when her daughter was 12. Cheif Dave also spoke of the fallen world that we live it. God created it to be perfect. He formed it for a place for us to dwell. He gave us a choice. We made the wrong choice. Now the world is corrupt. God did prepare an eternal place for us who believe and trust in the Blood of the Christ for Salavation. Those of us who trust and believe will be with HIM in eternity. Yeah, I took that message Cheif gave me to my sister's bed side 6 years ago... I took that message to another friend's grave over the summer. I take that message today with Micah's passing. It doesn't comfort me right now.

I am going through the images he made availble on line. Of the events that we were at together there are a lot of similar pictures. Micah's pixs Kinda cool. I wish I could spend more time shooting a long side of him...

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

New Shoes

I got new shoes today!
Okay? Snowshoes that is...
My old ones I've beat near to death. I've logged a hundred or close miles on them since getting them about this time last year. I broke down today to get a pair that would work well on both hard pack and powder. I find that going the extra mile gets me to the powder. The rest is hard pack.
Before heading out this morning, I did check the avalanche report, everthing should be sliding. Augh! Presently in the valley it is snowing and I've got to work the next few days. I hope I can find a little un-treaded trails on Sunday.
I found myself near the top of Granduer Peak on the north side of Mill Creek Canyon. Ah, wonderful, a clear day lots of scrub oak and animal tracks. I saw a small herd of deer on my way back down.

Sunday, February 25, 2007


I know that my God is a God of love and peace.

But when I read today's headlines I see people blowing themselves up. I can't figure it out...
Daily on Yahoo news there is more suicide bombers blowing up Mosques? Yes, terroists blowing up others of like belief. Hum?

Something is up here. I'm nervous...

I caught a special speaker last night at my church. The man is a former terrorist who became radically saved after a car accident a number of years ago. Today even while recieving numerous death threats each year he keeps speaking up...
I watched a video he promoted last night. I watched it today with my family and we talked about it. Yes, after seeing this video I am nervous. What I see is a radical way of life that is promoting killing yourself for peace. Huh? What gives? The speaker last night explained it is a way of life, a way of hatred that beings young.

Several of you know I've protested the first Gulf War and I've been to rallies since then. Some of you may not know that I've looked into Socialism and other philosophies of governance. I keep seeing in each of these something is missing.

What is missing is the human need of security. The ideologies I've looked into are not human, they miss a major point, the point of LOVE. When I'm not on my soap box of God as Holy, I do not pause to point out that because He is Holy, He shows it as LOVE.

I challange you to read up on this link. Browse it. Watch the trailers.
Obession the Movie

Yeah, I'm nervous. I really like my way of life. I like being able to worship my God of Heaven, and His only Son Jesus Christ, who died for ME, as I want. I like my life of freedom and the pursuit of debt and leasure. I like getting up into the mountians He created and I like gathering with others of like mind.

When this radicalism comes, I will not be able to participate in the activities I freely enjoy, nor will you...

Tuesday, February 13, 2007


I don't know where my old man got this. As I read it though I got kicked back to '91, I was a little more hypie then in my thoughts towards 'Gulf War 1' and the crap that went on then. I also didn't know who to turn to to show that I supported our troops and yet did not agree with what our country was doing then. I still don't agree 100%. What pisses me off are those people who say they support the troops, who are of age, and don't go! I bite myself here because reflecting on this puts me in the hot seat. I didn't sign up either, now I'm too old.

If you support our troops, some of you have friends and family in the military do read on... do write them... do attend even the "Anti- (FitB)" protests (Ive attended a few & honestly they are hilarious these people don't know what's going on...) and get in the faces of those who don't give a FitB about freedom for everyone. Show your support every boisterous* way you can and even in ways you don't have to use words.

*write your government reps from the lowest levels to the highest levels of government, attend rallies, stick a flag in your window with your love one's pix, attend open houses, follow and follow up on the news, call/write to the editor, enlist.

To All....................

I normally do not forward unsolicited e-mail, but being ex-military and knowing what our troops are being asked to do, I felt compelled to forward the message. I am just sending the message. I have been moved to tears and hope this is not a joke. Too, many of our troops are coming home this way and they need to be honored. Please see below:

Last week, while traveling to Chicago on business, I noticed a Marine sergeant traveling with a folded flag, but did not put two and two together. After we boarded our flight, I turned to the sergeant, who'd been invited to sit in First Class (across from me), and inquired if he was heading home.

No, he responded.

Heading out I asked?

No. I'm escorting a soldier home.

Going to pick him up?

No. He is with me right now. He was killed in Iraq .

I'm taking him home to his family.

The realization of what he had been asked to do hit me like a punch to the gut. It was an honor for him. He told me that, although he didn't know the soldier, he had delivered the news of his passing to the soldier's family and felt as if he knew them after many co nversations in so few days. I turned back to him, extended my hand, and said, Thank you. Thank you for doing what you do so my family and I can do what we do.

Upon landing in Chicago the pilot stopped short of the gate and made the following announcement over the intercom.

"Ladies and gentlemen, I would like to note that we have had the honor of having Sergeant Steeley of the United States Marine Corps join us on this flight. He is escorting a fallen comrade back home to his family. I ask that you please remain in your seats when we open the forward door to allow Sergeant Steeley to deplane and receive his fellow soldier. We will then turn off the seat belt sign."

Without a sound, all went as requested. I noticed the sergeant saluting the casket as it was brought off the plane, and his action made me realize that I am proud to be an American.

So here's a public Thank You to our military Men and
Women for what you do so we can live the way we do.

Red Fridays

Very soon, you will see a great many people wearing
Red every Friday. The reason? Americans who support
our troops used to be called the "silent majority." We
are no longer silent, and are voicing our love for
God, country and home in record breaking numbers. We
are not organized, boisterous or overbearing.

Many Americans, like you, me and all our friends,
simply want to recognize that the vast majority of
America supports our troops. Our idea of showing
solidarity and support for our troops with dignity and
respect starts this Friday -- and continues each and
Friday until the troops all come home, sending a
deafening message that .. every red-blooded American
who supports our men and women afar, will wear
something red.

By word of mouth, press, TV -- let's make the United States on every Friday a sea of red much like a homecoming football game in the bleachers. If every one of us who loves this country will share this with acquaintances, coworkers, friends, and family, it will not be long before the USA is covered in RED and it will let our troops know the once "silent" majority is on their side more than ever, certainly more than the media lets on.

The first thing a soldier says when asked "What can
we do to make things better for you?" is .."We need
your support and your prayers." Let's get the word out
and lead with class and dignity, by example, and wear
something red every Friday.


This does sound like an urban legend but it does have the necessary items in it to sound true. I would not be surprised if it is. If not it is an event that is taking place all to often these days.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Ray of Light

Dust hanging in the air above me caught my eye for this image. I couldn't quite capture the light as a moment before had. I tried. I shot a few more pixs trying. The dust still there but the brief moment of intense light wasn't. So I sought a different image.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Ensenada, my thoughts

Nite time at Ensenada 2
YWAM Ensenada.
Wish you were here, rather I wish I'd be here longer, my vacation is hours away from being over. Last night after a walk on the beach during the day, hanging out with the leadership of this location - asking them a fist full of questions, and returning from doing laundry with the DTS I snapped a few pictures of this base at night. The gentle roar of the waves on the beach, tempted temperature, a quite evening, and most staff secure in their homes (not that this area is dangerous, it's not) I sought refuge behind the lens. The lens provides me an opportunity to touch without getting touched. The lens provides me an opportunity to connect you (& myself) with a moment in time of touch. I find a simple redirection of focus changes the perspective and meaning of a photograph. I find also the lens provides me the touch I want, the opportunity to get close, to grab life, to give life. Isn't it ironic how I use the lens?

Thoughts of returning quickly to this location tops my heart. I want to distinguish between the heart thump of coffee in my veins from the heart pull of GOD in my life. What would I do here? Easy come on staff as a photographer and mix it up with being on staff as builder. What does this mean? It means that my main purpose would be to take photographs for YWAM San Diego/Baja at this location with the different programs offered with Homes of Hope. The other purpose would be to assist in building homes when my skills as a photographer is not required. The little bit of construction I have played well last weekend. The experience in photography proved invaluable the weekend before.

Poverty is the lack of options, it no longer phases me to the extent in did 15 years ago when two men wrestled a bag of garbage from me when I brought it down the gang way of the Anastasis in Senigal west Africa. The poverty I see here is people without options wanting to provide for their children. They live in squalor but not the squalor of India. I see that with providing them a clean shelter as what Homes of Hope does their out look on life immediately changes to that of hope for their future and that of their children.

Christ commands us to shelter the poor, to help those in need. I feel that too on my life. I do have things I need to over come before returning here. I am earnestly praying about returning here.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Alonso Family Build

Some where a long the road from a hotel to a build site in a YWAM vehicle my nervous edge wore off as I introduced myself to those I piled in with. My meeting of the Alonso family and friends over the weekend is the result of my interest in finding out more about YWAM San Diego/Baja and their Homes of Hope program. I am considering my return to mission by joining this organization. I mentioned 'nervous edge' simply I don't like meeting new people without something solid to connect with.

Our arrival at the build site which lay half way up a hill - looking more like a surmounting mountain - greeted us with a chill of morning and encouragement. The crew of 22 people quickly pulled each other up the trail and back down again. This team's spirit is long lived and quick to make a chain gang. Everything seemed to be moved by chain gang. Everything in the tool van needed to be passed up the trail. Later we found out the family moved all of the building materials up to the concrete pad the night before. Before long the wood for different units too had moved via chain gang either up to be painted or down to become roof trusses.

The crew divided into three groups one for painting, one for framing, one for trusses. I found myself beating nails on the framing team. Admittedly there were set backs but these were over come in due process. I saw how the 'A' Builder, Austin, worked with each difficulty in turn. The walls came up shortly after lunch. Followed by dry wall nailed to and the trusses passing on to the walls. By dark the pad looked closer to a home then a bunch of materials. A lot of work yet needing to be done would be completed by the same time tomorrow.

The crack of dawn hit me early, my legs, let's not go there sore, did not wnt to move. My friend/photographer and I stayed in San Diego, we had to roll early to greet the Alonso family which stayed at a hotel in TJ. Starbucks is my friend and poison, it wakes me up when I want to sleep. The troops rallied at the hotel for breakfast at 7:30am. After a short devotion we folded into the cascade caravan of vans bound for the build site after a brief interlude to divide up the house warming gifts for our families.

I really loved seeing the site this morning. Something struck me as hope. Every duty I saw the mother participating in she wore a smile broader and wider then the canyon her home over looks.

The team jumped to. The set backs of yesterday a memory. The task of today would be completed soon enough - ok the last shingle nailed to minutes before giving the keys to the family. Not a sore muscle of mine regretted not coming at this moment. A tear formed in her eye as the keys were handed over. Her house, which she built. Her house which she labored for. Her house, her hope for her children. This is the hope of homes of hope.

I've posted my pictures at Flickr.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Twisted Coffee

Twisted Coffee by *PreyingJaws on deviantART

This looks like a photo-manipulation. It is but, it's not. It's done in-camera. While taking the picture I twisted the camera. I liked the result when I went through my images of the Baja Vision event I shot at last weekend*. This image falls into my misc. folder of staff and behind the scene images. What do you think of it?

*This link will take you to YWAM San Diego/Baja' home page.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Pentax K-10 D

The K-10 D by Pentax is my hit for the season. I picked one up just before leaving on vacation. Without much time to play with it, to learn the nuances of the beast I turned to the forums. I'll admit arrogance and assumptions in this, it was a mistake. The K10D is solid, rock solid with a plethora of intelligence with the design and buttons. Unlike its sibling I tote the *istDS it is not menu driven. The flip flop between focus/metering/format is a selection of the right button or dial. Most of my shots were with high saturation and over exposure settings which lead to a few to many blown out images (the forums were wrong). Besides not experimenting with exposure setting - my bag - I did a lot of fast action shots to capture emotion and the emphasis of the moment.

I shot this past weekend for YWAM Baja and their Baja Vision event. The intent of this is to bring a few people together to build houses for the poor in Ensenada Mexico. The other aspect is to raise funds to add to the ministry of YWAM Baja. This group wants to build a training center on 14 acers of land just south of Tijauna. One evening the Mayor of Ensenada gave Sean Lambert a plaque of recognition for the work his group does. I encourage you to follow the link and read the story.

I'll admit the image of Sean Lambert is not so sharp. I shot it with the *istDS and 28-80 f/2.8. The picture of Brett Curtis below was shot with the K10D and 12-28 f/4.

Back to my camera review. Go to figure the one day, the first day of the build, the weather chilled & wet. I fought of the rain while hiding the cameras under a jacket. The rain seemed not to affect the operation of the camera. The dust of the following day thou may yet haunt me. I cleaned both cameras thoroughly each night and the whole kit on my return to San Diego. I do really enjoy how fast the K-10 D focuses. One night I flip flopped the f/2.8 lens to the K-10 D. In low light shot after shot the camera focus proved dead on in low light & a hell of a lot faster then it ever was on the *ist DS. The most impressive item of all is the RAW button. I shot a lot of JPGs the RAW button lets me shoot RAW on those images I must capture without diving into the menus. The RAW can be either PEF or DNG with the inclusion of a JPG. The camera is taking me on a learning curve. I do need to watch what I do when I go from one Pentax to the next. They both have interesting nuances to work around.

Over all I found my weekend with the K-10 D a delight. I'll pack both cameras around until they die of over use.

Sean Lambert article:
YWAM Baja:
Pentax K-10 D:
*ist DS:

Friday, January 12, 2007


A blast from my past, Bill, my chief cook from the M/V Caribbean Mercy (CbM). I worked with this jolly fellow for 2 1/2 years when I first joined the CbM. Bill's heart was for the Latinos and for providing high quality meals to the ship's crew. I still see it today.

When I arrived in Ensanda I jumped out to find my old friend. Sure enough he'd begun his prep for dinner. Potatoes and pork roast. The smell tickled my senses. He wove a story of Brett contacting him and his wife Misty about a year and a half ago to inquire if God was directing him back into missions. Shortly afterwards the natives of Sparks NV packed up the kids and headed to Mexico.


Did I not leave Utah to get warm?
Since heading to southern California and now in Mexico - Ensanada - I've been cold. Cold why? Because it is. Can I shoot the bastard who is advertizing Global Warming? If Global Warming means the whole world is getting warmer why then is California experiencing the coldest winter in near recorded weather history? Just because New York is hot does not mean the whole world is warm unless of course you are a New Yorker.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Wide Angle

I took a little time off today to walk around the CV Midway. A little of what I went there for is knowing it's compartments were tight I wanted to learn the 12-24mm wide angle lens I picked up.



Tuesday, January 09, 2007



I'm sitting in the batcave (my friend's Dave office*) in San Diego/National City CA, not yet in Mexico. Reviewing images of past builds as recient as November 2006, I get the sense of the need of adequit housing for the poor. My hands yern for the warmth of a 32oz hammer while my eye scans each image I review in preperation for my journey this weekend. Part of today is to pull together a slide show for this weekend's event the other part of today is to connect with YWAM Baja . I'll be on the work sites (all four) to take pictures of the 'builds' happening this weekend. As soon as we leave the sites the rush to pull together the rest of the slide show will happen with close-ups, action, need, emotional, and dedication shots within the hour. I'm closing in on the 5000th photo looked at for content and application materials. I know now what is needed for me to capture.

I met an old friend last night at his new house for an hour. My visit wasn't so much of catching up on old times, we did that on the phone two weeks ago and in the office yesterday. My visit was more of what it will take to get me down here full time. My heart still beats for missions. My hands want to wrap around the work that needs to be done. I want do more. More though is not what is needed. I know from the past when work is to be done, work gets done. When the heart is behind then work is not work, it is done in love and this shows the Christ behind the work.

I ponder and pray, am I ready to commit to the known of the unknown again about volunteer work? I've written the list of things that are holding me back. The list includes junk from having 30 cases of books to my love of Utah's Back Country. The scariest on the lists is leaving family and fund raising again. Again? Yes, this is how I lived before as a missionary, I raised my own support. I honestly don't want to follow the jitters of coffee running through my veins. I want to be forward not only to myself but to others, where I see myself going and how can I get there from here.

Unguided over the last few years I've set myself on three things: get out of debt, get my Master's Degree, and get back into 'Missions.' Beyond writing these three things down the specifics aren't written down. They are expressed through long hours at work and pushing to get monthly incentives. Talk and the look towards attending SLTS again when I can afford it. Missions though, I don't talk much if any about it with others. I keep this to myself. I love my memories of travel and the seas. I miss the community feeling of getting to know others. Why do I count Dave and Lara as great friends? It's because of the times in the field, on the ship, and BD (before Dave). I met and worked with Lara in '94 until '95. Missions though means different things to different people. It no longer means packing your gear into a 6ft crate bound for India one way. Nor does it means getting speared by head hunters in the jungles. It means reaching out to those around with the Gospel of Christ. There are many ways we do this. For me I want to show something about the world that others are missing. I miss busting it out all day then going out to some one bench church to do a drama portraying the life of Christ.

Where is my calling? What is my desire? How am I going to walk it out? How is what I am doing at home going to forward this? Can I intergrate what I've learned to push beyond myself? Is my comfort zone way to restrictive? I've got questions. I've got ideas. I've got stability where I am at. What's next? What's the shake up?


  • YWAM Baja

  • Homes of Hope

  • _IGP4535 the batcave

  • Youth With A Mission

  • Salt Lake Theological Seminary