Thursday, September 27, 2012

Butch/Femme Photo Project Gets A Facebook Page


I just wanted to let everyone know that my Butch/Femme Photo Project now has it's own Facebook page! It's another way for me to get the word out about the project so please check it out, "Like" it and share it far and wide!

I have three photo shoots lined up this weekend for the project so an update to the page will happen soon! Thank you all for participating, supporting and encouraging me to keep going with this project!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Gratitude, Gifting and Grandpa

An awesome TEDx Talk by John Styn.

His grandpa reminds me of mine. He focused on the positive in life, too. How could you focus on anything else with a name like A. Happy Haskell?

Take a 17 minute break and watch this video. It's totally worth it.

Sunday, September 23, 2012


I'm hearing from more and more of you out there since announcing the Butch/Femme Photo Project and I just wanted to take a moment to stop and show my gratitude. Your comments and your emails motivate me to continue with writing and with the project. It truly is a project that comes from my heart.

Thank you. Thank you for your kind words. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings. Thank you for being comfortable enough and trusting enough to do so with me. Thank you for your encouragement and motivation to continue to do this project and write in this blog. Every one of your comments and emails are important to me.

Thank you for being you.

As a quick update on the project, I have a few more photo shoots lined up within the next few weeks so look for updates along the way. I'm thinking that as soon as I get those posted I will begin with the task of fundraising for travel expenses around the states and possibly up to Canada so I can capture all of the participants who are out of my immediate area. So, if you're one of those participants, I hope to see you soon!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

My Virgin Year At Burning Man

This year I was gifted with the opportunity to attend the Burning Man festival in Black Rock City, Nevada. If you don't know what Burning Man is, the best I can do is lead you to the web site. Everyone has asked me all about it and I'm finding that I just don't have the words to fully encapsulate the experience.

Burning Man is so hard to describe. It's almost sadly difficult to describe but only in the sense that the world and the society in which we live is running at such a fast pace and most everyone in it is connected but mostly in a virtual way. At Burning Man, I was completely disconnected from the virtual world and was fully connected to the world and everyone around me in a very real way. It was amazing, to say the very least.

The human connection and the connection that I used to feel to everything around me are connections that I had been craving. That connection, that feeling of being connected to everyone and everything, was all over Black Rock City. Everyone was so happy to be Home. Not one person greeted me with a simple handshake. Every greeting was met with a hug and not just a quick pat-on-the-back hug, these were from the heart, full embraces. The way hugs are supposed to feel. The hugs that you get when you know that the other person really sees you.

Going to Burning Man felt very much like a spiritual journey for me. My greeter at the gate was perfect for this journey, as well. First she gave me a big hug and said, "Welcome Home!" Then before she handed me the pipe to ring the bell with she pointed to where we had just come from and said, "There is your past," then pointing to where we were going she said, "this is your future. Ring the bell with all of your intentions for your week's experience and for your future."  That is exactly what I did. My intention was to open up my heart to whatever the week and the playa gifted to me.

I went Home in so many ways. Home to where everyone reconnected with each other and the world around them. Home to where I reconnected with myself.  Home to where I reconnected with everyone and everything around me. All of that reconnection has opened my eyes to the people and the world around me. Not to sound like the movie quote but, I SEE people. Seeing people makes me want to connect with them more even in the virtual world. I don't feel like I could just "Like" something on Facebook anymore. I'm more drawn to actually comment because it feels more to me like I'm connecting with them.

Hopefully, I can hold on to this feeling and I think I can. I have to remain conscious of it though and not allow myself to get so lost again. Staying present in the moments that I have are of utmost importance. Keeping site of my priorities, which is staying connected to myself, my family, my friends and the world around me is top priority. Everything else is just stuff, really. 

 Of course, while at Burning Man I took A LOT of photographs because it's a photographer's paradise. I've posted them all to my Flickr account if you'd like to check them out. I'll slowly add descriptions as I can. It's taken me 2 days to actually get through all of the photos so it'll take some time to get them all settled. They are in chronological order, within the set, from setting up camp (and resetting up camp after we were hit by what was actually a dust devil but what we're calling a tornado) to the sunrise of the last day and the sunset of last Thursday when my love took me on a surprise spa day to Bonneville Hot Springs.