December

#335 Temple in Chino

01 December 2013 // Chino, California

Came across this surprising temple on the drive back to Bakersfield… had to stop for the photo op.

#336 Contraband

02 December 2013 // Bakersfield, California

Some of the items confiscated from one day of working at a middle school– hey, these kids stick with the classics. That pen is a prank shocking pen.

#337 The Pinhole Camera

03 December 2013 // Bakersfield, California

Deanna and I made some pinhole cameras out of matchboxes and film rolls for our trip up to Utah. Can’t wait to see how they’ve turned out

#338 Icicles

04 December 2013 // Browse, Utah

Utah in the winter is cold and beautiful. We came across these gorgeous icicles after getting gas in Browse. We drove all day from Bakersfield and through Vegas. I can spend all day in a car with Deanna over and over.

#339 Mountains Beyond BYU

05 December 2013 // Provo, Utah

Okay, I think BYU might have one of the prettiest campuses ever. Deanna and I went with Eliza to a human rights class on campus.

#340 A Calvin and Hobbes Snow Day

06 December 2013 // Provo, Utah

The snow in Provo was so powdery, it was perfect for playing. My red scarf, red sled, and Deanna’s tiger hat added to the experience of feeling like those classic wintertime Calvin and Hobbes scenes.

#341 Salt Lake Friends

07 December 2013 // Salt Lake City, Utah

Went up with some of Deanna’s high school friends to Salt Lake City for the day. Outside the temple, the snow started falling like crazy.

#342 Zion National Park in the Winter

08 December 2013 // Zion National Park, Utah

Accomplished one of my longtime goals of visiting Zion. It wasn’t the explosion of color I expected due to the snow, but it was still magnificent. This was the kind of place where I could’ve just stayed for a very, very long time.

#343 Christmas Chains

09 December 2013 // Bakersfield, California

I was happy to see that the Christmas tradition of countdown chains were still alive and well in this classroom where I subbed. I also got to spend some of the day watching stop motion Christmas movies with the kids, so that was an especially festive assignment.

#344 St. John’s Christmas Pageant

10 December 2013 // Bakersfield, California

We went to St. John’s to watch Simon’s Christmas pageant. Unfortunately, we didn’t get the best view of Simon, but we were still entertained.

#345 Homemade Christmas Card Night

11 December 2013 // Bakersfield, California

My activity of the night was to make some crafty Christmas cards with Deanna to send out. Mission seemed like a success.

#346 Fish Tacos & Settlers Night

12 December 2013 // Bakersfield, California

Thursday night at Ben and Sammy’s was the best. Restaurant quality fish tacos plus winning Settlers for the first time made for a successful guys night.

#347 The Orphan Master’s Son

13 December 2013 // Bakersfield, California

Has anybody read this? Cause I want to discuss! I personally had mixed feelings. I thought Adam Johnson’s storytelling was incredibly clever and his writing was sharp and fun to read. As a portrayal of North Korea, it was seemingly accurate, but I thought it missed the opportunity to humanize its people the way a novel could have.

#348 The Stephens Family Portrait

14 December 2013 // Bakersfield, California

I got the chance to take the Stephens family pictures before a day full of fun with visitors. This was a really fun shoot.

#349 Peacock

15 December 2013 // Bakersfield, California

Went back to Hart Park with Meaghan, Deanna, and Raquel to go visit the peacocks again. (We avoided the cat face)

#350 Bad Air and Errands

16 December 2013 // Bakersfield, California

The air was so bad today the American Lung Association dubbed it a red flag day. But I was too distracted by errand running.

#351 Deanna, c. 1995

17 December 2013 // Bakersfield, California

Got to help Deanna and family put the lights up on the tree. Their ornaments are great.

#352 Mini House Party

18 December 2013 // Bakersfield, California

Hung out with Deanna’s social work friends. Played that dance game on XBox and finally watched The Heat.

#353 Vintage Baseball Card Shop

19 December 2013 // Bakersfield, California

Right across from the school where I work is this old school style baseball card shop. They’ve got some goodies there. I spent some time basking in the nostalgia… they even had those old Starting Lineup figures… if that means anything to anybody.

#354 Downtown Art Co-Op

20 December 2013 // Bakersfield, California

Got off work early, so took a walk to explore downtown. Found this little art gallery that is run as a co-op. Had a nice talk with one of the artists.

#355 Henley’s Photo Lab

21 December 2013 // Bakersfield, California

Deanna and I went to Henley’s to develop film from the matchbox pinhole cameras we made. Some of them turned out pretty interesting.

#356 His Story

22 December 2013 // Bakersfield, California

Went to The Bridge for a pretty great Christmas service… a good reminder of the journey we’re on

#357 Luke Does the Knotty Pine

23 December 2013 // Bakersfield, California

Went out for breakfast with Deanna, her mom, and the Stephens. A good way to end my year in Bakersfield.

#358 It’s a Giant Pancake, Sonny Van!

24 December 2013 // San Diego, California

Reunited with Sonny in North Park and met his brother. First time eating at the Hash House… I think I get what this place is all about.

#359 Christmas Presents

25 December 2013 // San Diego, California

Seeing some cousins I don’t get to see often enough was a highlight from this year’s Christmas.

#360 Reuniting with Tommy

26 December 2013 // San Diego, California

It’s been far too long since I last got to see Tommy, but thankfully we were able to rectify that for my last night in San Diego. Surprise high school reunions included.

#361 Disneyland, CA

27 December 2013 // Carson, California

Deanna and I treated each other out to Disney as our Christmas presents to each other. First time going there since I was five!

#362 The Pie Hole

28 December 2013 // Los Angeles, California

Took Deanna out on a little date around L.A.’s Arts District. This is one of my favorite little eateries around there.

#363 Good Conversations at Portfolio

29 December 2013 // Long Beach, California

Spent a surprisingly long time at Portfolio, enjoying a really engaging conversation with this group of LiNKers.

#364 Uncle Visit

30 December 2013 // Carson, California

Got to spend some time with my uncle Eulogio, looking over old pictures during his visit to California this winter.

#365 The Madness of 2013

31 December 2013 // Carson, California

This year taught me a lot about presence, rest, and stillness… which was a bit ironic considering I spent 2013 all over the place: 16 countries in total, here are a few of the represented highlights.

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