Linda JeffersIn a world of so many great photographers and writers, I am venturing into some unknown territories, leaving comfort zones, finally very willing to practice the art of seeing. By maintaining the practice of posting daily photos, I hope to continue learning about the possibilities that I trust are out there for the taking.

Come join me on my journey!

Missing my friends and backpacking.

Liz, trailname - Gatekeeper.

Suzanne, trailname - Tailwinds.

Just in..... last but not least, Stacy posing with some recently purchased makeup. She is in videography school in LA for a month, weekly producing short videos. Stacy has quite an imagination. Can't wait to hear the story behind this upcoming video.


Two, no three, no four highs today.

First high: I have been on the site Classmates.com for a number of years now, always hoping I will reconnect with some old friends. Yesterday I received an email saying James Duncan had visited and checked out my profile on the Classmates.com site. Could this possibly be the same Jimmy Duncan that was my heartthrob at University High?……The same Jimmy that had the cutest 1957 T- Bird? The same Jimmy whose car long ago would be parked in our family driveway at the end of our late night dates……. the car that made my Dad nervous……the car that made my Dad remain standing looking out his bedroom window, until he saw his daughter get out of the car, heard the house front door slam shut, until he knew his daughter was safely home in her bedroom. Alone.

Great memories, first loves. I hope this is the same Jimmy. I am waiting back to hear. I responded with an email to James Duncan asking him what his first car was, before I open further communication.

James Duncan

Second High: I found Laurie Excell’s photography website as a link on Scott Kelby’s blog. I want to do one of her photography workshops….the workshops where we photograph bears in Alaska or Chase Storm to photograph. I now subscribe to her blog posts and can’t believe her life and her photography.

Third High: Again, I found out about this photographer, Eddie Tapp on Scott Kelby’s Wednesday Guest Blogger post. Every Wednesday Scott has a guest blogger. I am blown away by Scott’s guests’ essays and photos. Eddie’s blog was another uniquely informative essay.

Fourth High: “My” teacher, Carol Leigh, you know the photographer I have been taking online classes and workshops with the last year and a half, is such an example for me. I follow her photography blog daily and can’t believe her commitment to practicing what she teaches, her artistry, the daily commitment to exploring her never ending, unlimited talents. She just keeps practicing seeing and produces the freshest, most uniquely-her-own, work.

Life is good and thanks to all who contribute to motivating me to get more and more out of this good life.


Last year’s photo of Sandi’s husband, Jerry (left), with Harvey.

Sandi’s husband has been in the hospital the last 4 days with another bout of pneumonia. Jerry is disappointed he wasn’t able to sell Poppies with Harvey outside Pavilions today. Jerry and Harvey have been selling Poppies 5 days during the Memorial Day weekend at this location twice a year for as long as Ray and I have lived here in the desert.

While marketing, I ran into Harvey seated at the table outside Pavilions today. He’s missing his buddy. Hopefully Jerry will get out of the hospital tomorrow and be able to catch a day or two of selling Poppies this Memorial Day Weekend.

Hope you feel better soon Jerry!

By the way, I have started a Twitter on this blog site. Look for it on the right hand side directly above Friends’ Blogs. The idea to tweet (is that how you say it?) came to me when Jerry recently went into the hospital, again. I thought this would be a good way to keep friends up to date with current important on how someone is doing that has been sick, etc.


Heading back to New Mexico for a 91 make-up mile backpack with my friend, Tailwinds.

Last year I backpacked all of NM except for the 91 miles I skipped from Snow Lake to Pie Town.

I will drive back to NM straight from the annual ADZPCTKO weekend I attend each year. I leave for the KO on Thursday morning. I haven’t decided if I’ll drive to NM Saturday night or Sunday morning early. Sunday I meet my friend and backpacking partner Tailwinds in Quemado, NM. We’ll spend Monday driving to drop one of our cars off at the Snow Lake Campground and then driving back to Pie Town to the start of our southbound hike back to Snow Lake.

I’m not very well trained, but neither is Tailwinds. Tailwinds is a very special lady I met online. We’ve become good friends, mostly over the phone, so I am really looking forward to spending face to face time together.

Tailwinds is Suzanne Finney’s trailname. She hiked most of the PCT last year and will be finishing up the remaining miles later this summer. She is an exceptional writer and is well into the process of writing a book of her PCT adventure.
Here is a link to her journal:

If I have reception in NM while on the trail I’ll post some photos. Otherwise I’ll update my trail journal from last year after I get home.

I’ll be back home on or before May 7th. I’m leaving just in time. The temperatures are rising here in the desert.


Happy Holidays to me from Susan L. and now, to you all.

I asked Susan L. if I could post her pictured Xmas card art for my Xmas day blog. I also asked if she’d fill me in on what inspired her thinking while painting her beautiful Christmas card.

Her response:
Regarding the Art:

As far as placement is concerned, I just wanted the character to be flying and for the tree and the fish to be free as well. The actual background is gold and yellow (like gold leaf or metallic) I chose that color of background because it’s association with the divine and yellow being wisdom. The tree represents growth, yet knowledge beyond human years. The fish is a symbol of simplicity and considered to be the perfect creature – adapting to its environment, yet swimming in water which represents consciousness. The tree is not rooted. It is flexible and adaptable. Blue represents the throat chakra – expression; pink the heart chakra (as does green), green also represents growth, health, prosperity. The little “tendrils” represent life energy and how we are all connected to all things. In most of my work I make the tendrils of gold or silver – once again representing divinity.
These characters are all very playful with a multiple level message that is usually read simply by an attraction to color. Each color, each chakra, each tone (in sound/music) are representative of something in the realm of the divine. Usually all of these things are within the cosmic collective consciousness.



Thanks Susan.


Woohoo! Stat counter hits 10,000 views.

I started this blog September 23, 2007. Today the stat counter reads 10,000 hits. I must say I am surprised and delighted that you would find what I choose to blog interesting enough to come back and follow along on a consistent basis. Thank you. I’m sure many of you have no idea about the fear I’ve always had of others reading my writing.

The first time I ever had the courage to allow my writing to be viewed online was when I hiked the PCT in 2002. I hand wrote daily trail journal notes every night. In towns I mailed off the notes to my sponsor Debbie, who typed up and posted them to a website I started just for the hike. I was terrified everyone would find out I was a terrible writer. My motive for writing and posting these online trail journals was twofold: First, to keep all my friends and family apprised of my whereabouts and happenings. Second, to help future hikers like previous online backpacker’s journals had helped me. I was ok after a while knowing others were reading my journal entries because this writing was for a purpose while hiking.

I first started keeping another online blog, not this one, (just for fun – i.e. – for no purpose) It was December 11, 2004 when I started this secret online blog. No one knew about it. The blog was for my eyes only. I still had way too much fear of what others might think to allow anyone to read my thoughts on the page.

Then on September 23, 2007 I started this current blog you are reading.

Recently went online and took a peak at that old private online journal, the journal I kept before this current blog. I found the last entry I wrote on that site before I changed over to this public blog journal.

Here is a portion of the last entry I wrote at 10:32pm, June 20th, 2007:

I‘m almost 20 years in my program. The 2nd step suggests I come to believe in a Power greater than myself.

This next year I have high hopes I will experience physic changes as the result of possibly seeing some pretty ugly embarrassing things about myself. I’m hoping I’m on my way to finding and relying on a Power greater than myself. Then, I do want to try and live according to how this Power wants me to live.

I’m tired. Tired of trying harder. I want to learn to relax, learn to enjoy my life, not try harder to be better, do more-All so you will think I have value.

I’m done trying to make you see me a certain way so I will feel accepted or feel I have worth…….. So I’ll feel ok with myself and you. This over dependence on what you think of me is exhausting and it’s none of my business. I have to keep raising the bar in what I do to impress you.

Here’s my pledge: from now on – what I think of me is all I’ll care about……. From today on and forever.

Fun. That’s my ideal for living. To learn to have fun and relax. What do I want, what do I think, how do I feel?

Do I like and enjoy my choices in a day? Am I doing something because I believe I’m expected to do it? Am I doing it because I want to, for me, or for you? If for you, is it a good motive, is it to be helpful and to give…or is it a bad motive….to get…..to influence….to impress so you’ll like me and want to be around me…

I’m so done thinking about how I come off to you on a daily basis so I’ll feel ok. Done.

Really done.

Well, something has happened since this writing in the private journal entry in 2007. I do feel freer. Less self conscious. Believe I deserve. Know what’s good about me. Worry more about what I think. And………I believe a lot of this change I feel in myself is the result of doing what I’m afraid to do, like writing in this daily blog.

One day at a time, I’ve written. I‘ve posted my photography work. I have no secrets. You see it all on the page. I’m not hiding anymore and the sky hasn’t fallen. Actually, I’ve never had more self esteem and less fear. Who’d have thought change would come as the result of doing the things I fear.

Thank you readers. Thank you so much for your kind words, continued support, compliments and fun comments.

Much love and gratitude,


p.s. During my morning walk, wearing 2 layers of fleece and full rain gear in this atypical strong rain we are having, I took the photo above. Look at the view of our condo from the other side of the lake in the photo. What a great place we live in.


Heidi and I previewed the upcoming Saturday Mission Hills CC hiking group hike on the Art Smith Trail this morning.

Pretty cool Palm Oasis #1 and, further on, #2 up the dry, desert Art Smith Trail on Highway 74 below the San Jacinto mountains.

Saturday morning at 7:30am we will drive to the trailhead for the 2nd hike of the season with the MHCC hiking group. Last week there were only 4 of us who hiked out of the 102 people on the Hiking Roster. Hmmmmm. I have a goal to get more hikers involved. To be continued…..

Isn’t Heidi cute?


Stacy’s Kilimanjara upcoming Adventure.

My friend Stacy is leaving Sept 4th to hike up Kilimanjaro. I’m home now and have spent the last hour checking out here website. http://www.stacyandjim.com/Kilimanjaro.html

She is so excited and if her website doesn’t get you thinking about climbing Kilimanjara, I’ll be surprised. Great job Stacy on all your research, preparations and planning.

Have a great hike Stacy!!!

Here is an email I received from Stacy with a link to her blog too:

Hello Friends:

I thought you might be interested in what’s been going on as Jim and I prepare for our upcoming trip. I’ll be heading to Africa on 9/4 and will be climbing Kilimanjaro with my good friend, Abby Dixon. Jim and our friend David Ascher will be joining us afterward for our safari and gorilla tracking.

If you would like to see more details about the Kili climb check out our website by clicking this link: http://www.stacyandjim.com/Kilimanjaro.html or you can also see my blog which I barely ever added anything to all summer, in spite of my good intentions by clicking this link: http://stacyandjim.com/blog/ The beginning is at the bottom, the most recent at the top. If you want to see more details about the safari portion use this link: http://www.stacyandjim.com/Kilimanjaro_itinerary.html
Also, in a seperate email I will be sending out an email link and instructions to access my Voice Blog I will be posting daily from the mountain. It will come automatically to you as an email link when I post every evening from the mountain. In a two or three minute message you can follow along on our journey and hear the details of daily life on Kilimanjaro.
Hope I’m not boring you to death with too many details, this will truly be one of the most exciting things I’ve ever done (or will do) and I’m eager to share it!

“One shoe can change your life.” -Cinderella

Stacy Jacob

Here are Stacy’s instructions on how to hear her voice blog from the mountain:

RE: my voice drop where you can hear my updates from Kilimanjaro.
Check back between 9/9-9/17 by copying and pasting the url for this voice drop into your web browser or saving it to your favorites http://drop.io/stacyjacob then enter kilimanjaro as the password. All in lower case. You can try it now, there is a test drop on there.
I will be updating with a brief phone message each night on the mountain. When you get into the website you can click on the individual voice-casts by doing the following:
Look for “Audio” near the top left.
Left click one time on the red text that says “voice message” and the date. It should auto load and play for you. Be sure your speakers are turned up.
If there are multiple drops you can click on each one individually and listen in order.
If it does not auto load you may have to click on “download” in the box that pops up.
On 9/16 I intend to be letting everyone know we made it to the summit!

“A woman is like a tea bag- you never know how strong she is until she gets in hot water.” – Eleanor Roosevelt.

Stacy Jacob


Girls Sundae Out.

Dinner in Mammoth at Moguls tonight was a blast.
Sophie wanted to sit next to me when Craig, Ray, Sophie and I were being seated. I had no idea how much fun we’d end up having. I immediately reverted to being a 7 or 8 year old. I even asked the waitress to bring me the same set of crayons and puzzles Sophie had been given. We played, we colored, we laughed, we tried to tell jokes, and we ordered the same things…just like best friends.


A new day on top of Bump and Grind

Meeting Rick and Katie this morning for the second time this week sure makes it easier to keep my commitment to daily exercise. This is the third week Katie and I have met Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 5am to hike the close-by, local Bump & Grind hill. The hike is about 4 miles and usually takes us about an hour and 20 minutes. We aren’t fast but we keep up a pace where we probably sweat a half a pound of water on these humid, warm summer days. When we begin our hike it’s still dark and cool compared to later daytime temperatures around 108 degrees.

Rick was excited to see the sunrise this morning. He kept wondering when the sun would pop-up over the mountains. At the moment the sun appeared, I asked Rick and Katie to pose for this shot. I focused on the sky so the camera would expose for the sunrise with fill-in flash selected to light up Rick and Katie.