identity - val in real life
Life

Postcards from Real Life: Identity

In the wake of changing my name, I’ve gotten many inquiries about how and why I chose it. Keep in mind this took over three years of searching and consideration. […]

Life

Finding Fierce

I’ve talked before about finding what you’re made of. Until now, the challenges I’ve faced have largely been of my choosing. This time though, external forces have forced me to […]

Life

Healing and Joy

Right now in my life, my biggest task to address everyday is healing. Of both the physical and emotional sort. Everyday is a mental tennis match between knowing I’m getting […]

Outdoors

Celebrating Winter

Here in the Peach State, winter is a conundrum. The respite from summer’s brutal heat is welcome yet we don’t have the benefit of snow to liven up our outdoor […]

val in real life
Life

Postcards from Real Life: A Better Story

One of the subjects much-discussed among the outdoor community is risk. And the very incorrect perception that our pursuits are often very risky, dangerous, or even downright irresponsible. As I’ve […]

Life

Postcards from Real Life: Forty-three

Today marks another year under my belt. Like any year, forty-two presented it’s triumphs and challenges. I’m thrilled with the adventures I was able to have both solo and with […]

Life

Postcards from Real Life: The Beauty of Gray

I’m a fan of black-and-white photography, particularly infrared conversions. There’s something so simple yet visually intricate about the tones. Recently jamming out to some Live while I was working away […]

Life

Postcards from Real Life: Adjustments

If you follow along on the various social media outlets like Facebook and Instagram, you know I’ve been battling a fairly significant hand injury that I sustained back in June […]

Life

On Remaining Vibrant

My forty-third birthday is a mere four weeks away. And with autumn in full swing and the leaves turning, I’m facing my own change. Yep… I have officially found my […]

Photography

Postcards from Real Life: Mentor

Today I’m back in the Great Smoky Mountains for my photographic family reunion. It’s time for the Autumn Brilliance workshop again and this is where I come to get rejuvenated […]

Photography

Postcards from Real Life: Mojo

I just returned from another whirlwind adventure… a two-parter. I spent 6 days on the Hell Hike and Raft in Idaho followed by a trip to Virginia City in Nevada. […]

Life

Postcards from Real Life: Journeys

On Monday I set off for the Hell Hike and Raft. After months of anticipation and preparation, it’s finally upon us. This type of travel is actually quite different for […]

Dandelion in the Great Smoky Mountains
Life

Postcards from Real Life: The Art of Living

Today’s Postcard is inspired by two women I greatly admire. They both recently posted some wonderful thoughts on how they live their lives that resonated with me. They reminded me […]

oregon sunset
Life

Postcards from Real Life: Setbacks and Denial

So you know how I was feeling triumphant for having returned from The Pacific Northwest Tour sans major travel catastrophes for once. Other than feeling a little worse for wear, […]

Outdoors

Postcards from Real Life: Pay it Forward

If you follow me on Instagram and Facebook, you know that one of my favorite local haunts are the trails in the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area because I post […]

Life

Postcards from Real Life: Back in the Saddle

So the last couple of weeks I’ve talked about adventures completed and adventures to come. I’m guessing you probably won’t realize how these two intersect… and it’s not in a […]

Outdoors

Postcards from Real Life: Hell Hike and Raft

One of the things about my life is that, even on the heels of a big adventure like the Pacific Northwest Tour, I’m always getting the question, “What’s next?” And […]

Travel

Postcards from Real Life: 48 Days

This past Sunday, I wrapped up the Pacific Northwest tour my longest road trip ever, 48 days. Given the type of people I often associate with, the overlanding and dirtbag […]

Travel

Postcards from Real Life: Backroads

The Camp Granola crew is winding down the Pacific Northwest tour but still facing over 1,600 miles to get home in the next 3 days. But here’s what’s counter-intuitive… I’m […]

Travel

Postcards from Real Life: Another Solstice on the Road

Another summer solstice is upon us tomorrow. The length of the days here in northern Washington and the extreme arc of the sun through the sky are foreign to me […]

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