Sandia Sunset

albuquerque new mexico sunset

Sandia Sunset

The last night of our mission trip, I got to enjoy this beautiful sunset, with great friends, from atop Sandia Peak near Albuquerque, New Mexico.  The terrain and views from the tram were breathtaking as we traveled up the 2.7 miles of cable to the observation area at 10,378 feet.  It was a peaceful ending to a wonderful trip, and an experience I won’t soon forget.

Quintessential Cowboy

cowboy on bench in santa fe

Quintessential Cowboy

As friends who were with me could attest to, it took several attempts to capture this image of a waiting cowboy in Santa Fe, New Mexico.  He was interesting to me, with his yellow shirt and matching boots as he sat, kicked back, waiting for his shopping companion.  I didn’t want too much background distraction, and it was a busy day in the square, but I finally lucked upon a scene in which he was the only character.  I am fairly happy with the result, as I think it portrays the true feeling of Santa Fe.

Southwest Sunflower

sunflower against bright blue desert sky

Southwest Sunflower

This sunflower, one of several in the area, towered over my head as it stretched toward the bright blue early morning sky in Bluff, Utah.  It seems amazing to me that these can grow this tall and strong out of nothing but sand and red dirt.  It was a welcome relief to the eye from the dusty reds and browns of the surrounding scenery.

First Star

star in the desert southwest sky

First Star

The stars… one of the best reasons to visit the isolated areas of the desert Southwest!  From the minute the sun sets behind the unique rock formations, the dusky sky becomes littered with tiny twinkling lights.  Certainly, the same event happens night after night anywhere you are, but the ability to really see and appreciate it is something truly phenomenal where the sky is as wide open as it is in the Four Corners area.

Twin Rocks

sandstone Twin Rocks in bluff, Utah

Twin Rocks

Exactly two weeks from today, I will be waking up to this beautiful sight.  These are the Twin Rocks… landmark of the Twin Rocks Trading Post in Bluff, Utah.  They are said to symbolize the twin sons of Changing Woman and her husband, the Sun, in the Navajo Creation Story.  I am so excited to revisit this breathtaking land so rich in belief, history and tradition.

17 Days

old navajo jewelry sign in bluff utah

17 Days

As the countdown to the mission trip, 2012 continues, the shot of this old sign brings excitement to my spirit!  It is found on the side of an old structure in Bluff, Utah, a small town of around 300 people, located in the San Juan River Valley.  Bluff is the heaven that our mission teams calls home for a week that can only be described as… well… I cannot find the words to describe it, other than such a blessing.  If you’ve never been on a mission trip, I highly recommend it… not only for what you will share with others, but also for what they will share with you!  17 days…

Anticipation

gate in the desert southwest

Anticipation

We’re down to 27 days to go until this year’s mission trip to the beautiful Southwest.  It is with eager anticipation that I wonder what blessings are in store for us this year.  The big expanse of blue, open sky is  only one of the sights that I am looking forward to seeing again.  The children and adults who we are fortunate enough to interact with, and who live in this beautiful landscape, are also on my list!  Looking forward to being filled…