It took three years plus a little, but I’m at 3000 items on my gratitude list.  What a blessing the list has been!  A chance to showcase God’s work in the little details of my life and to remind myself to give credit where credit is due.  So, at the risk of being redundant, Thank You God!IMG_3044sm2961.  S able to help J out in a bind

2962.  Turning a disappointment into a chance to problem solve and remember strengths

2963.  Lunch with Andy at Sola

2964.  Unique flowers at fusion to photograph

2965.  Client who is grateful

2966.  Color for June is purple at 2 peas photo challenge

2967.  Pat’s kind comment about my lilac photo

2968.  Getting a blog posted two days in a row

IMG_3045sm2969.  Positive feedback spontaneously given for a project I did when the person didn’t know it was my project.

2970.  Bambi Cantrell video on-line – so educational and free!

2971.  Living close to camping opportunities

2972.  Walking up Yonder Road

2973.  Lupine beginning to bloom at Spire Rock camp ground

2974.  Feeling strong after walking 11 miles.

2975.  Figuring out karate tournament registration

2976.  J safely off to Washington DC

IMG_3050sm2977.  Friendly chat with our neighbor

2978.  Good long walk with Denise

2979.  Views five miles up Cottonwood Canyon

2980.  J seems to be doing well on trip

2981.  Getting a model opportunity set-up

2982.  Walking before the rain hit in the morning

2983.  Many opportunities to view wild flowers this spring/summer

2984.  J remembered to call Andy on Father’s Day

2985.  Inspiring photography website

IMG_3072sm2986.  Rain for all the local crops after a dry May

2987.  Tank able to run with Andy again

2988.  Able to walk at the mall on a rainy day – still getting the walk in and not getting all wet

2989.  Satisfaction with the result of the Kirby family photos

2990.  Yummy pork chop dinner cooked the way my mom did them

2991.  Getting through a “To Do List” relatively early in the day

2992.  Bright green of different shades on the shrubs all around our office building

2993.  Reliable friends for J in both S and N.

IMG_3076sm2994.  Wisdom from others rattles in my head when I need it most

2995.  Drops of water shinning on all the leaves after a spring rain

2996.  Arnika and Arrison playfully chasing each other around the house

2997.  Getting the bank and quicken to communicate over the internet for hope of easier bookkeeping work


2998.  Interesting rows and rows of low hanging clouds over the fields on Gooch Hill

sm-32372999.  Having enough of what we need.

3000.  Getting to 3000 and the consistent uplifting feeling that comes from keeping this list.


Categories: Andy, Arnika, Arrison, Daily life, Faith, flowers, gratitude, Montana, Outdoors, Photography, poppies, Spring, Thankful to God | 1 Comment



Matt and Lisa (Miki) bravely brought their girls up the trail a full mile to get to the first crossing of Cottonwood Creek in late May.  The water was rushing, but the trail just before the bridge was a fantastic spot for a little family fun.


This fun family serves as the leadership for the CRU (formerly Campus Crusade for Christ) organization on the Montana State University campus here in Bozeman, and I met them through church.   Not only do they provide great connection with young people learning about Christ, but Matt is a talented musician who generously shares his gifts with our congregation.


And then there are their beautiful daughters!  Oh my!  They are cuteness defined!  And so happy and easy to take on a little photography adventure.


It was my pleasure to spend an hour or so of time getting to know them better, watching them play together and capturing it to share with the world.  Truly it was a blessed morning!






Categories: Black and White Conversions, Cottonwood Canyon, Family Fun, Family photographer, Hiking, kids, Montana, Outdoors, Photography, Spring | Leave a comment



J is out-of-town – on a trip to the East Coast with a group from his school, so Andy and I were alone (except for Paul, who lives in the basement).  Anyway, part of my training for a big hike in August is to do long hikes on Saturdays.  This week was scheduled for a 12 miler, so Andy joined me.  It was very fun!


We actually joined up with some friends by accident – the wife of that couple is doing the same training I am, but we thought they were going at the crack of dawn, so when we saw their car at the trailhead around 9 a.m. we assumed we’d see them hiking down while we were still on our way up.  So we had some company almost the whole way because we saw them just past a mile into the hike (we caught up with them, which suggests we were at a faster pace? Oh wait, it’s not a competition).

These two photos were taken about five miles in.  If you look closely you will see a dog (our friends’) chasing an elk at the edge of the meadow.  But the view in that meadow was just breath-taking! 

IMG_3021smOther than that big hike there were some hours at the office, some house keeping, gardening, photographing of flowers, bbqing and other cooking, and general relaxing.  Nice to have a start on the weeding done. 

J comes home on Tuesday (late) and we can’t wait.  It is a busy week at the office, but I hope to post some more flower photos. 

Gotta find a real live person willing to model for some photos – got some ideas to try!

Categories: Andy, Daily life, flowers, Hiking, J, Montana, Outdoors, Photography, Spring, Summer | Leave a comment



The Icelandic poppies thrive around here. 


They are in my back yard and along the roads.


They start out so very bright that it is hard to photograph them.


Then time, the sun, the wind, and the rain bead down on them and they fade into a beautiful paleness.


New pods are bursting open every morning.


While old blooms prepare to become bare seed pods.


Categories: flowers, Montana, Outdoors, Photography, poppies, Spring, Summer | Leave a comment



Categories: flowers, Hiking, Outdoors, Photography, Spring, Summer | 1 Comment



We were camping last week near a rushing creek – no fishing in that murky white water.  Up early in the morning  to take some photos and the wild flowers were beautiful.  Just the shapes are so fun to examine – and the black and white allows you to do just that.  Enjoy.







Categories: Black and White Conversions, flowers, Montana, Outdoors, Photography, Spring | 2 Comments





Our apple tree showed its glory the past 10 days or so, but as the rains and a bit of hail came this past few days I think it is pretty much past its prime now.


These are photos I took on Monday morning.


I gave myself the assignment of looking for “light shining through”

sm-2851You’ll note that some of these have the brown edges of age.



this one is my favorite (above)  Love the cross of the sun rays coming through the background.


It was a good year for apple blossoms, and I believe it will be a good year for apples if we can keep the birds, late frost and hail from bringing too much damage.


But if all we get are these beautiful blossoms I guess I can’t really complain too much because they really are a blessing in and of themselves.

Categories: Apple blossoms, flowers, Light, Outdoors, Photography, Spring | Leave a comment

June 2, 2014 Gratitude

sm-27002913.  More egg production last 2 days

2914.  Ben and Becca’s great graduation speeches

2915.  Standing to sing hymns is the right thing to do.

2916.  Brief fun connection with Anna H.

2917.  J’s connection with M and N still strong

2918.  The healing and emotional health we can see in J since joining MCS

2919.  Good meeting with Max and Merrilee

2920.  Camille sharing her heart about so many thingssm-2685

2921.  Cool breeze through the windows at night

2922.  So many fun people to connect and reconnect with at the graduation party

2923.  Dark purple flowers on the wild Delphinium plants along trails and roads

2924.  “Wild Things” from Linda

2925.  Hugs and warm greetings from Ben

2926.  Healing for Jax’  ear

2927.  Safety for a 4-year-old approached by a stranger

2928.  Arisson’s little tuft of wild hair on the top of his head

2929.  J’s respect for Glen L.

2930.  J’s successful playing drums for worship service

2931.  The way J describes Ben’s influence in his 8th grade project paper

2932.  8th grade project is all turned insm-2681

2934.  The wind through the open windows at night

2935.  U-Swirl is mostly gluten-free

2936.  Another new paying client

2937.  Excitement for Garrett and Andi’s wedding

2938.  So many yards with blooming flowers in town

2939.  Beau visiting and sharing about his life

2940.  Tank healing so well

2941.  My concerns understood by Denise

2942.  Summer bucket listssm-2691

2943.  summer food like corn on the cob

2944.  Being useful in the wedding preparation.

2945.  Coming to realize J will be in highschool soon and the changes that reflects and foreshadows

2946.  J doing well in karate after missing several weeks of sparring

2947.  Looks like no rain until after hike and not during Garrett and Andi’s wedding

2948.  Pelicans flying in unison

2949.  Completing hardest 10 mile hike I’ve ever done

2950.  J’s positive response to hard karate workout

2951.  Rain held off long enough to mow the lawnssm-2677

2952.  Wild flowers in abundance on 10 mile hike

2953.  Garrett and Andie’s wedding a success – not rained out and lots of fun

2954.  Tired body after active day

2955.  David K’s transformation from what seemed like a disaster to the pinnacle of success

2956.  Camera not damaged when it fell from the roof of the moving car

2957.  Lessons from Jasmine Star available for free on the internet

2958.  commonalities on our summer bucket lists

2958.  Reconnecting with friends over a meal

2950.  Tank back to wanting to walk around the field at night with Andy


Categories: Apple blossoms, flowers, gratitude, Multitude on Mondays, Outdoors, Photography, Spring, Summer, Thankful to God | 3 Comments



I know it probably seems a bit late to most people across the country to be saying “spring has sprung” but here in Montana it is right on time – at least for our little corner of Montana.  Heck, there are still areas nearby that are inaccessible for hiking because the snow is too deep, so we are happy for the green areas!


This week school ends for J, so summer is fast approaching!  He’s got his 8th grade project to finish up, and that is about all.  So excited for him, but also in a certain amount of awe at the concept that he will be in high school.  Seems impossible, but it is true!sm-2711

We are doing a bit of planning for summer, each of us creating a “bucket list” of what we want to do.  While there was a great variety, there were also several points of cross-over, which is fun to not.  Looks like we’ll all be fishing and camping some over the next few months, and maybe, just maybe, there will be some dance lessons thrown into the mix for the Mrs. and Mr.


The office, always a factor in our lives, is coming up on a busy time – several jury trials in July and August, which means lots of preparation.  Also have a jury trial this Wednesday if the prosecutor doesn’t come to his senses.  So that summer bucket list has some competition for our time, but that is normal, and we will find a balance!  I promise we will!

Categories: Apple blossoms, Daily life, Family Fun, flowers, J, Montana, Outdoors, Photography, Spring, Summer | Leave a comment



Here we are in Mid-May and finally we have some green to view and enjoy.


I love the water drop – it’s raining right now – and the contrasting almost purple color edging some of the lupine leaves


Apple blossoms are on the edge of bursting forth – praying for the hail to stay at bay!  Hail has taken the blossoms several years past, and I’m really hoping for a chance to photograph the blossoms in earnest this year.


Categories: Apple blossoms, flowers, Outdoors, Photography, Spring | 1 Comment

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