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6 years, 12 months ago 0

Yesterday I talked about how Scott Kelby came to my rescue. Well isn’t God fantastic! Today I got an email from my dear friend and shooting buddy, Vinny Colucci. It turns out that a seminar he had scheduled for July 24th in Greensboro, North Carolina was in trouble, his presenter Bob Krist had a conflict in his schedule and couldn’t make it. His question to me was could I step in for Bob.
First I love Bob Krist, he is the best travel shooters out there, in my estimation, and I don’t know if I
could draw for Vinny like Bob could, but how could I say anything but, count me in……

Part of our walk with the Lord is proving we mean it when we say we will step up to the plate when He calls on us. When Vinny needs my help, God is calling. Vinny has been a real friend through thick and thin and I wouldn’t let him down. I don’t usually announce places I’m doing workshops in this blog. I don’t want the focus to be off of the faith aspect of this site, but this is place where faith and actions meet. Faith and action. Faith is the key to waiting on and listening for God’s voice. Action is often what he calls us to. When I discussed starting this blog with a dear friend at Nikon, it was discussed that while my faith is real, taking this action (writing a blog about my faith), could ruffle some feathers. While that would never be my intention, it could happen. So the question is what would you do?

When I took the job as a PMTR, (Professional Markets Tech Rep), at Nikon I told my boss and friend, Bill Pekala that before I agreed to take the job he needed to know what my priorities would be. God, Family, Friends and Nikon, in that order. I told him I would give him 110% effort for Nikon but I wouldn’t sacrifice numbers 1 through 3 under any circumstance. I’m eight years in and it hasn’t been a problem, if it ever was, I would walk away without complaint.

God doesn’t want 110% effort or a big part of your life, He wants it all.

the pilgrim

*Photo info: Sparks Lane in early morning fog Cades Cove in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. D700, 24-70 @ about 35mm.

6 years, 12 months ago 1

In this blog you have heard me sing the praises of Scott Kelby on several occasions. Scott is one of the most talented, funny, engaging people I’ve ever known. There should be a law against having as many talents as Scott does. He is an acknowledged Photoshop (Adobe) expert and incredible teacher of these programs. Scott is a truly talented shooter and a kick butt musician. Last year, as you may recall, Scott pulled the GAPW’s fat from the fire by doing a workshop with me that allowed us to pay off a very large debt. Scott would except no compensation, even refusing to let me pay for his flight up to Savannah. A friend is someone that, at your lowest moment, shows up with his sleeves rolled up, ready to do anything he can to help. Scott Kelby more than fills that bill. If that were not enough, I’m honored to call him a close friend.

The real benefit from last years workshop was the great friendships that were made during the weekend. Most workshops involve some personal attachment, I should know, I’ve taught over 400. This one though, was something very special. The group was a conglomeration of great people from all walks of life and interests. This group came hungry to learn and as always Scott Kelby was in top form. No one left disappointed. We had such a great time that we are holding a Reunion event in early October in Moab, Utah. So far it appears that over 90% of the original group will come back for this get together.

My father once told me that to have a friend you have to be a friend. Jesus told us to treat others as you would want to be treated. If you want friends, this is a pretty good formula. When it is all said and done, possessions and accomplishments will pale in comparison to the few friends we can claim at the end of our days here on earth. Thanks Scott for making my cup run over.

the pilgrim

6 years, 12 months ago 0

The image above is one of my favorites. It was made over 30 years ago. This is my middle son,
Wesley. We took the kids to a state park close by and you can see the sheer joy on his face being in the outdoors. I was talking to Wes not long ago and I asked him why he has such a great love for the outdoors, (he and his family are avid hikers and campers). He reminded me of all the great times Sherelene and I provided him and his brother and sister on trips to the outdoors.

Often we don’t know what a big impact the simplest things will make on our children. All my kids are grown and have children of their own, my six grandchildren. All our family are outdoors folks, and all the grandchildren are too. I never realized that Sherelene and I were laying down such a strong tradition.

Everything we do and say influences someone, usually more than we realize. This is why I want so badly to exemplify His Love in my life. I know sometimes I fail, but it is always my goal. Being imperfect and attempting to approach perfection may seem like a senseless goal. The reality is we don’t have to do it alone. He promised that if we dedicated ourselves to Him, He would provide the power we do not have. It’s a good thing, because without Him I couldn’t even get close to my goal.

It’s not for me though, it’s for the little fellow sitting on the rock, and now his children and Scott’s and Catherine’s as well. It’s worth the effort………

the pilgrim

7 years ago 0

I’m a watch collector. I’ve always been fascinated with watches and about ten years ago I started picking up ones that I liked. Not many of my watches are expensive, most are just watches that I enjoy wearing. I’m sorry to say I’m up to over 30 watches. I heard a quote form a friend that is actually quite funny, “A man that owns a watch always knows what time it is, a man that owns many watches never knows what time it is.”

Do you know what time it is? Years ago a wonderful song was very popular. Cats In The Cradle was first recorded by Harry Chapin, in the last few years it was re-recorded by my dear friend
Ricky Skaggs. It’s a great song, read through the lyrics and see if you agree with the message.


My child arrived just the other day
He came to the world in the usual way
But there were planes to catch and bills to pay
He learned to walk while I was away
And he was talkin’ ‘fore I knew it, and as he grew
He’d say “I’m gonna be like you dad
You know I’m gonna be like you”

And the cat’s in the cradle and the silver spoon
Little boy blue and the man on the moon
When you comin’ home dad?
I don’t know when, but we’ll get together then son
You know we’ll have a good time then

My son turned ten just the other day
He said, “Thanks for the ball, Dad, come on let’s play
Can you teach me to throw”, I said “Not today
I got a lot to do”, he said, “That’s ok”
And he walked away but his smile never dimmed
And said, “I’m gonna be like him, yeah
You know I’m gonna be like him”

And the cat’s in the cradle and the silver spoon
Little boy blue and the man on the moon
When you comin’ home son?
I don’t know when, but we’ll get together then son
You know we’ll have a good time then

Well, he came home from college just the other day
So much like a man I just had to say
“Son, I’m proud of you, can you sit for a while?”
He shook his head and said with a smile
“What I’d really like, Dad, is to borrow the car keys
See you later, can I have them please?”

And the cat’s in the cradle and the silver spoon
Little boy blue and the man on the moon
When you comin’ home son?
I don’t know when, but we’ll get together then son
You know we’ll have a good time then

I’ve long since retired, my son’s moved away
I called him up just the other day
I said, “I’d like to see you if you don’t mind”
He said, “I’d love to, Dad, if I can find the time
You see my new job’s a hassle and kids have the flu
But it’s sure nice talking to you, Dad
It’s been sure nice talking to you”

And as I hung up the phone it occurred to me
He’d grown up just like me
My boy was just like me

And the cat’s in the cradle and the silver spoon
Little boy blue and the man on the moon
When you comin’ home son?
I don’t know when, but we’ll get together then son
You know we’ll have a good time then

So what time is it? It’s time to spend time with your spouse, to nurture and love your children, to listen to your neighbors and friends. It’s time to do those things you always intended to do, but haven’t taken the time to do. It’s time to face the fact that God is real and He loves you and He has been knocking at the door of your heart. He’s waiting for you to open the door, so He can come in.

What time do you think it is?

the pilgrim

Ricky Skaggs at the Derby, shooting with his Nikons. Photo by Skip Dickstein