Bliss With A Twist Photography: Blog en-us (C) Bliss With A Twist Photography (Bliss With A Twist Photography) Wed, 07 Oct 2020 23:32:00 GMT Wed, 07 Oct 2020 23:32:00 GMT Let the planning begin! Like everyone else, 2020 has me antsy, suffocated, and all around tired. It feels like this year has taken the wind out of our sails without any gusts on the horizon. No promises for future wind and THAT gets heavy. As if we are sitting ducks. 

I don't know about you but I don't like anything stagnant. I'm a mover and a shaker, if you will. Just ask my kids about me dancing around the kitchen or bursting into their rooms and yelling "hurry, grab socks and get dressed, we are going on an adventure!" 

Being spontaneous is the way I prefer to live my life. 2020 doesn't really subscribe to that philosophy so in turn I am unfriending 2020, STAT!

About a week ago I had a brainstorm. A somewhat crazy idea came into my mind and my bored existence grabbed ahold of it with both hands. I'm homeschooling our 2 kids and we keep reading about all of these cool places and events in the USA.

The idea was "why not go see all of this?"

Obviously my next thought was "we can't do that."

Then..."wait, why not? I don't work outside of the home, the kids are homeschooled which can be mobile. I have a drivers license and what more do we really need?" 

Let's just say the wheels in my brain did a burnout and haven't slowed down since. 

Another thing about me is that I'm an all or nothing person. When I'm in, I'm IN!!!!!! I started researching (and by researching I mean searching on Pinterest) road trips and sights to see. Pretty soon I stumbled on a route to see all 48 states. Yes, you read that correctly. FORTY-EIGHT states!!!

Again, I hesitated and then realized, WHY NOT?! 

Why just see a fraction of the US and not the entire thing? We will have to do Alaska and Hawaii later but that won't be too hard. 

My hubby looked at me like I had actually lost my marbles, when I brought it up, but here's the thing...

- Our kids fight 23/7 (usually they cooperate with each other about 1 hr/day) regardless of where we are, and sometimes they behave better in public and with other people. 

- I'm with them ALL THE TIME and this wouldn't be any different. 

- I'm not a huge fan of driving but I'm also not a huge fan of being stuck at home, either. I'd rather be having an adventure than sitting here going nuts. 

- I hate only reading about things. I want to SEE them. FEEL them. Get a real sense of the landscape and imagine the battle while standing on the battlefield rather than watching youtube about it. 

- One thing that I've always wished is that our kids could meet some of the people I love who live far away. They know some of them already but lots of them are scattered around and it's hard to visit them all if you only fly. Driving opens up so many more options and for WAY less $$. 

- As far as learning goes...I traveled a TON as a kid. What I remember isn't what my teacher read to us about in History class, but the bullet hole that I could see out of when I was IN the actual church that was shot at during a battle. Seriously I'll NEVER forget that. It made the whole thing feel REAL to me. I want history to be REAL to my kids. What better way to do it than take them to see it?

So...This is where my head is at these days. A road trip this huge takes a TON of planning, mapping and budgeting for. I have multiple lists started to keep track of WHAT we want to see. WHO we want to see. PLACES we need to have time to explore. What we can do for free and where we need to save up to have the $$ to spend to see something super cool! 

All in all it is a solution. It gives my 2020 brain something to look forward to. Plan for. Get lost in. THAT is exactly what I need right now. 

Many of you are on our list to visit. I'd love feedback on places that are MUST SEE's etc. Since we are just beginning we have lots of wiggle room in the path we are taking, still. That will change as we continue. 

I plan to blog my way through this journey and share photos and stories. I KNOW it will be quite the adventure. It's never dull with us! haha. I hope you enjoy following along with us. Maybe this trip can get us ALL out of the house!

Love you all, 

Life with Becky

ps. We are cooking up ideas of how to earn $$ for this trip. The kids have a few ideas. More on that later! For now...Here's a tentative map of what this trip could look like! How exciting is this?!?!?!

Chevrolet and data scientist team up to create epic 48-state famChevrolet and data scientist team up to create epic 48-state famChevrolet and data scientist team up to create epic 48-state family road trip


(Bliss With A Twist Photography) let the planning begin lifewithbecky lower48 road trip dream Wed, 07 Oct 2020 23:31:48 GMT
May you see the world like her As I sit here feeling ALL THE FEELS of 2020 I have this one little bright spot. Her name is Audrey. Her little light is shining through my computer screen as I look over the moments I captured last week. 

I haven't done many photoshoots this year. THIS one was one of the first, in fact, and it's September. I drug my feet just a little as I thought of getting behind my lens again. What if I wasn't any good? What if I couldn't really do what I love doing after so long? What if my tired and weary heart just didn't have it in me? I pushed past all of those nagging fears and went ahead and scheduled this session. 

Pre-2020 I saw Audrey roughly once a week. She has grown up on the other side of my lens and I have always loved capturing her changes as she grows. She came bounding out of the car and I instantly knew that I had what I needed to make this work. Or to put it more accurately I knew SHE would get it out of me. 

The first thing she did was take off into the park. She's almost 3 and it is par for the course. This photoshoot quickly became a fun game of chase and hide and seek. I loved every second of her being her curious and adventurous 3 year old self. We were off!

There's something special about stopping time when someone is being their authentic self. Kids don't worry too much about cameras, typically. They go about living their lives and I'm just a witness to what they're going to do. Adults don't do this. Adults don't go about their lives with a carefree attitude about photos. That makes kids special. 


It wasn't very long and Audrey had discovered a slithery little friend on her path. She wasn't entirely sure about it but mom and dad showed her that it was harmless and before we knew it she was holding it. It's not every day that a snake makes it into your photo shoot!


You know what else is awesome about little kids? When they smile it is FOR REAL...every time. If you let them be themselves and just keep your trigger finger ready you WILL capture their real joy. It's fun to create moments for this to happen organically and Audrey gave me this stunner! I love this photo so much!



We decided to head down to the beach and Audrey was ALL ABOUT IT! She was so cute as she found exciting rocks and the sparkling water sure made for a fun 'backdrop.'


What is it about little kids pouty lips? They get me EVERY TIME! I love how this photo makes her still seem little. Innocent and not too sure about whatever it is she sees on the horizon.


Mom and dad joined in the fun since that is what this was all about. Looking for rocks. Just ask Audrey! 


You know what makes my heart thankful? Parents who will sit down, in nice clothes, and play in the rocks because their daughter wants to. Parents who let them explore and even get dirty because THAT is how kids learn best. Audrey, you've got yourself some pretty awesome parents!

She decided that skipping rocks was fun but 'plopping' rocks (or boulders) might be even MORE FUN! I cracked up when I saw this image after the fact. I think she surprised her dad with that one!


Don't you know? Beaches are for walking barefoot holding onto mama's hand.


A little water never hurt anyone!


When daddy asked her to 'Show me your muscles' THIS is what she did! I cracked up! You show 'em, girl!


Oh and did I mention that Audrey and her daddy have a pretty sweet bond? He is clearly her favorite person and it's pretty cute watching them together.


See what I mean?!

It wasn't long after the beach that Audrey was off finding treasures again. This time a branch caught her eye and she was SO proud of herself. She had to come show it to all of us.

See what I mean? Pure joy!



So as I sit here on September 11, 2020 with tears in my eyes, I am thankful for this sweet girl. I LOVE how the world hasn't touched her childlike spirit yet. Her innocence is so pure and sweet and her independence tells me she will be strong. Most of all I hope we can all take a moment and look at our world like Audrey does. May that be our view today...and always! 


(Bliss With A Twist Photography) Fri, 11 Sep 2020 22:06:29 GMT
Trip to Colorado 2019 {Part 1- Brian & Kayla Lundstedt's Wedding}

20 years ago, my long lost 'sister' and I made a pact. We promised to have each other in our weddings...someday. Well, as time seems to continue to teach me, 2 decades flew by. Days and years have collected in our lives and we found ourselves, still far apart in distance, and even somewhat far apart in our friendship. The thing about Kayla and I is that we ALWAYS picked up right where we left off. She grew up in Colorado and I lived in Ohio. Every summer we would fly to see each other for a couple weeks and reconnect. We never had awkward moments. It was almost as if we were just  part of a song on pause. Our cd would spin and spin waiting until we could push play on our adventures, again. 

Eric and I got married in 2006 and I chose 2 girls to stand by my side. Krystal, my 2nd cousin and the 'roni' to my 'mac', and Kayla, my crazy cool Colorado friend who seemed invincible. 12 years later I got an invitation in the mail to be her BRIDESMAID!!!!! What?!? For real? I told her, right off the bat, that she did NOT need to feel obligated because of some 'silly' promise whispered between us, long past our bedtime. She insisted and so I bought tickets, a dress, packed our bags and took Annelise on a Colorado adventure! 


We got up before 4am to get to the airport in time to catch our flight. We had earned 'coffee' and muffins!

We had an uneventful flight and then needed to get a rental car. Eric had reserved us a small SUV and we could pick ANY in the lineup. I looked at Annelise and said "Have your pick, kid. Which one will it be?"

She IMMEDIATELY said "we HAVE to get the JEEP mom!!!"

{little did I know just how much 4-wheel drive would come in handy over the next week!}

We made a quick stop off at Cracker Barrel to grab a bite on our way to Fort Collins. We had to call Auntie Ashlee to get some recommendations on what was the best food to choose! She always comes through with a winner. 

We called Kayla and she was running errands in town. We decided to meet up at JoAnn Fabrics. We found each other at the bathrooms! We both found it funny that after not seeing each other in YEARS we met up near the loo!
We followed Kayla back to her place. She and Brian are building a 'barnaminium' on their 160 acres. The building is up but there is no power or water yet. They're living in a 5th wheel while they build.

I snapped this as we pulled in

This truck is how you know where to turn into their driveway! It came in handy throughout the weekend to find their property!

Annelise and I slept in the 5th wheel and then the next morning we got up and went to the nail salon. We met up with Kate and Diedre. Annelise had a blast and fit right in with all the ladies.

Rough life.

Diedre brought Kayla a sash and tiara she 'got' to wear the whole day. I decided to snap a few more pics whenever she would come out of a bathroom. It always made us crack up!

We moved into the airbnb the next day and Annelise and I got to share some VERY comfy bunk beds. She was so excited to sleep on top. We lounged around and enjoyed lots of girl time.

Kayla got kind of sneaky and jumped up and hid in the master bedroom for a few min. Come to find out she was getting our bridesmaid gifts all laid out to give us. She had a robe, pashmina scarf, tote bag and necklace for each girl...except for me. Instead of a necklace she got me PERSONALIZED knitting needles!!! I had NO idea this was even a thing. Since the girls were wearing their necklaces the next day I asked if I could put my needles in my bouquet. I think it turned out adorable! 

My needles say:

Becky, true friends are never apart.

Maybe in distance, but never in heart.

The next morning Kayla's mom showed up and she had some surprises for her, too. 

Diedre had a gift for Kayla from Brian. He's always wanted a pair of 1911s with consecutive serial numbers. Well he got them and gave one to her!!! She was so excited and it was so thoughtful. Some friends had them engraved with their wedding date etc. 

ps. She wasn't ACTUALLY aiming at Amanda's head. It just looks that way.

We enjoyed a fairly relaxed wedding morning. Kayla had been banned from the property so we all hung out while getting ready for the big event. Cher showed up to do our hair and her fiance was there with their 2 dogs. Annelise immediately ran outside and spend the day playing fetch and cuddling 'Sis.' 

Diedre's hair turned out SO beautiful!!!


The photographers showed up and got to work. It was fun to take pictures of them since I'm usually the one 'working.' 

Here are some of Kayla's details. She dyed the heels herself. They used to be blue and she worked her magic and made them the perfect teal.

Her veil was GORGEOUS. The light coming through it hanging in the window made me swoon.

Kayla had decided, long ago, that she wanted us to each pick our dress. She gave us some basic guidelines but was hoping for variety. I'd say it turned out pretty amazing considering we live in 3 different states.


{insert ceremony} Since I was IN the wedding my camera was on a break in my bag until the reception.


Brian and Kayla's first dance. They rocked it and seemed like they've been dancing together for years.

Dwayne's turn with the bride. Father daughter dances ALWAYS make me cry. Kate and I bawled while they happily spun around the dance floor.

Scott and Diedre were having a fun time cutting a rug. I love the pic with Kayla and Brian in the background.

Kayla and her mama. How adorable are they?! Good grief. 


Dwayne also got a turn with his other daughter, Kate. 

I LOVE this woman! She is SO SWEET and it was wonderful to catch up with her. Kate, you have GOT to come visit!!!


I loved the flowers and details of this wedding. So pretty. The shells used for the guys were from a day Brian and his friends went shooting on the property. 

Bridesmaid bouquet. GORGEOUS

Kayla and Amanda. Best friends. So sweet.

Mike was the LUCKY guy who got to walk me down the aisle! At one point I was SO cold {after the ceremony} that I ran over and told him I'd give him $20 if he would hold me!!! haha I wasn't joking. My flowers were shaking I was shivering so bad. He was sweet enough to be my wind blocker after that.


A sweet little cake and lots of homemade desserts were served. Brian carved the B & K cake toppers the day before! What a handy guy!

It was fun to catch up with some other Watsons! Darrell and Lynn and their family. Doug & Cheryl.

This little love was my best buddy for the day. She had me cracking up and we danced the night away, later on. I wish I could have taken her home with us.

Her daddy took her on the dance floor multiple times which melted my heart.

Towards the end of the evening he was REALLY Getting into this whole dancing bit. He kept us all rolling!

I love how kids are always the ones who shine brightest. How cute are these littles?


This little guy was getting ALL the auntie loving! What a DOLL! 

Of course I had a favorite kid of my OWN! How cute is Annelise? The entire trip she was enjoying her cowgirl hat and boots. I love this kid.


A few funny/random shots from the day. Deidre had fun reception sneakers with glitter ties. Kate was LOVING her bbq. Kayla looking fierce in her shades.

Amanda has been friends with Kayla for as long as I can remember. We both wanted a picture with Diedre and Dwayne because they were like our other set of parents growing up. So many memories!

The parents and the pastor who married them.

Sheena's granddaughter was the flower girl. She was NOT happy that her grandma and grandpa were dancing without her at the reception! It was so cute!

Annelise and Annalee are the same age and almost have the same name. They were fast friends and enjoyed hanging out over the wedding weekend. We hope to see them again, soon. Too bad they live in Kentucky! Hmmm I think they would make great pen pals. 

The photographers of the day. They did an amazing job and I can't WAIT to see the pictures!!! 


{Part 2- visiting friends before heading home}

We left early on Sunday morning and ran to Wyoming to grab gas. It was the closest station and I was down to 16 miles worth of gas left in my tank. Typical! I do this all the time! On our way to the border we passed the place with camels. Yes, you read that right...CAMELS! So weird! 

As we crossed back into Colorado we decided to stop so Annelise could take her pic under the sign. She LOVES Colorado and says she wants to move here ASAP. 

We went to meeting Sunday morning and then headed to Joy Hartman's house. {Justin's mom for those of you who don't know her} We spent the night and enjoyed catching up with Darren & Cassie and their ADORABLE kids, too. They had fun with sidewalk chalk and magic tricks. August helped cook lunch and was quite proud of the tricks he showed us. 

I snapped a few photos before Darren and Cassie left. One is of Darren and I with our Mini Me's! 


We played Scrabble and had popcorn that night. It was so fun catching up with Joy and talking about Justin. 

Joy had to work on Monday so Annelise and I loaded up and headed for Elizabeth, CO. We got into rain which turned into snow by the time we got to Sheryl Baker's house. 

We spend the day with her. We enjoyed catching up, loving on Florence & Albert {2 very fat and spoiled felines} & singing/recording several Sound of Music songs. Annelise thought the microphone/amp was the coolest thing and serenaded us the entire day. We had a lot of laughs!

The snow continued and we headed off to Convention Grounds in Elizabeth to see Steve and Twyla Rassmusen. THANKFULLY we had 4 wheel drive {again} as the dirt roads were quite messy and somewhat slippery. I couldn't believe how much snow we were getting. Their cows greeted us as we pulled in. 

This is how much snow there was on the ground Monday evening. We enjoyed a nice supper and Annelise played with Ivy, their granddaughter who lives next door. They also happen to be 5th cousins, but who's counting?

The last time we were here this little cottage was framed in but still bare bones. Annelise and I traipsed to see inside of it and it did NOT disappoint! It may be the cutest little house I've ever been inside of. AAAHHHHH I want one! 

Next door to the little cottage is a stone cabin. I didn't take pics inside but it's a rustic little place and I could ALSO use one of these!!! haha

Out front Twyla has a crab apple tree that was loaded with blossoms before it started snowing. I don't think I've ever seen such a beautiful blooming tree, covered in snow, before. I was wishing I had my macro lens in my bag but I made due with the one lens I had on the trip. It was so beautiful.

We found ourselves in a winter wonderland and Annelise decided she wanted to shovel because it looked 'fun.' Uh...clearly she did NOT grow up with snowy winters because I can't imagine EVER thinking of shoveling snow as fun!

The humming birds didn't seem to know what to do with all this white, cold stuff. They sucked the feeders dry in record time and this little guy kept landing on the chair sitting on the covered porch. I couldn't blame him b/c I also thought it was a pretty adorable oasis. I kept creeping up on him to get closer and closer. Yet again, wishing I had yet ANOTHER lens, that I left at home. He was so sweet and would fly off and return as soon as I was far enough away to seem safe. I guess this was his new perch.

We managed to get our car cleared off, drove to the airport and spend several hours meandering through the different concourses. Our tickets got switched to Comfort Plus so we had a TON of leg room. Typical of selfies with a DSLR camera, this is far from in focus BUT I love it of us anyway! We made it home late Tuesday night and were VERY happy to love on our puppies and climb in our own beds. It was an amazing trip and I hope it's not nearly as many years before I make it back to Colorado, again! Thank you to EVERYONE who welcomed us in and made us feel like family. We are very lucky! 

{ps. insert my first speeding ticket between these 2 images. yep. It happened folks! Oops. I guess 31 years isn't that bad for getting my FIRST EVER ticket. Ugh. At least I'm sending the $$ to a state I like!}


(Bliss With A Twist Photography) Fri, 24 May 2019 20:14:01 GMT
Allen & Ruth A week ago I got a VERY exciting phone call. Ruth was wondering if I would photograph her and Allen getting married. I didn't hesitate for a second. Of COURSE I wanted to capture this amazing day for them! 

They had decided to have a small, intimate, courthouse wedding with 2 of their close friends as witnesses. We all met at the courthouse on the afternoon of May 3rd. Ruth & Allen had corsages to wear and Don & Claire helped them put them on.

We entered the courtroom and everyone was so excited. The Judge said she loves doing weddings and felt honored to be part of their day.

Allen and Ruth exchanged their vows. They were simple & traditional and brought a few tears to my eyes. 

The judge pronounced them HUSBAND AND WIFE and told Allen he could now kiss his bride. He lifted her hands to her lips and we all burst out laughing. 

After they sealed their vows with a kiss Don rushed over to Claire and laid one on her! Love all around!!!

Mr. & Mrs. Bruce!!!!

Papers were signed, copied & sealed. Now it is OFFICIAL!

The Newlyweds.

We took a picture with the judge and then headed out to enjoy the beautiful day.

As SOON as we got back to the car the texts started flying! They couldn't WAIT to share their happy news with their families.

We drove to Wright Park in Tacoma and took some pictures of the married couple. Here are a few of my favorites...

These two have a LOT of fun together! Always laughing. Always teasing. I envision a whole lot of joy in the coming years.

The details were simple and sweet.

I snuck into a photo with the happy couple before I headed home.

Thank you SO MUCH for letting me be part of this amazing day. I feel VERY lucky to have been able to capture these special memories. I hope everyone can enjoy a glimpse into your day and feel like they were ALL there!

I wish you all the happiness and joy that comes from sharing a Godly life together. I'm so thankful you found each other.

Much love,




(Bliss With A Twist Photography) Sat, 04 May 2019 17:16:34 GMT
Flying to Alaska in a De Havilland Beaver PART 2 WE MADE IT!!!!!!! Here's everything the Beaver hauled to Shulin Lake, us included!

Our glorious ride that took us from the strip to the dock.

It turns out that 1 full load in the Beaver = 1 full load in a pickup...

Which ALSO = 1 full load on Steve's barge. At first we wondered why he didn't have a boat and had a part of the dock with a motor on it, instead. Then we loaded our gear on and realized this may be a genius way to transport stuff. 

Off I go

Getting the barge off the edge. 

Oh and I forgot to mention that part of his dock was not floating anymore. Winter had cracked a couple of his pontoon barrels so we were a bit tipped!

Nadine had heard that if you show a little leg you have a better chance of getting a ride. haha The neighbor lady helped us and we were on the last leg of our journey to the Lodge.

The dock, playing with rocks, Steve cooking his $100 fish.

Sometimes you meet a guy and think he's all serious and gruff. Then you get to know him a little and realize he's the sweetest, most loving man. Well, that's Steve. "Nadine, come out here and dance with me. Life's too short not to." 

Camp Breakfast

He has a FEW fishing poles!

This is the Shower/Toilet house he built.

The entry latch to the door is the coolest! He had it made by a blacksmith.

The indoor bathroom complete with running water and a hot shower.

This is the COOLEST gas stove I've ever used. Works amazing even if it is an antique.

Steve also had part of this salvaged stove made. He told me he was going to take my matches away when I made a nice big fire and he'd been working up a sweat outside. He walked in to a toasty cabin and lost it! "What, I'd been chilly." "Chilly?!? Are you mad, woman?! It's going to be 100* in here before you know it." 

We took the barge out to see the mountain from the other side of the lake. So beautiful.

Give this man the outdoors and he is happy! 

We decided to fly to Talkeetna for breakfast the next day. It was GORGEOUS out and super clear. Look at these mountains!

Mainly, Steve needed to get a new keg for his porch! 

This town is picture perfect

We got coffee here and it was delicious!

Soaring Shadows


The neighbors transportation to and from their cabin.

Eric and Steve tackled the project of building a door for the new guest cabin. It couldn't look TOO new so they beat it up to make it rustic. 

Steve hooked up his keg in his keg-er-ater. This was a new word for me. Basically he turned a mini fridge into a keg dispenser. Worked like a charm.

Moose tracks in the woods. 

Gorgeous sunlight

We went down to the river to see if there were any fish yet


On the way home we checked out the Shulin View. 

It was stunning! You could even see Mt. Squattape

This man has Alaska in his blood.

Home again, home again.

The beds have mosquito nets THANKFULLY and he hung them with lures.

Another one of Steve's yummy breakfasts.

The hatch door on the far left is one of the items Steve brought back from hiking into the PBY. It has 8 working latch pins. Very cool. 

I noticed that they didn't have a sign anywhere that said Bent Prop Lodge. This prop is hanging where you walk up from the dock and I decided to make one. I had the guys cute me a board this size from some of their sawed lumber and went rock hunting. I think it turned out pretty cool.

Have you ever seen one of these?! I hadn't. It's a truck used to put float planes in and out of the water. They sure do look funny!!!

Flying back to Anchorage

We needed to drop Nadine off in Anchorage for her to fly home and Eric and I had decided to spend a few days visiting some friends. We ate at the famous Humpy's alehouse, downtown. It was as good as dad's always said it was. So glad we got to go there. We said goodbye to Nadine at the airport and Steve headed back out to Shulin. We headed to Mike & Sue Ross's. 

We went to an AMAZING Italian restaurant and had an incredible pizza. Of course Mike was being Mike! 

We also got to have dinner with Becca Cressell & Myrna Donell! It was so good to be back with 2 of my favorite ladies, again! 

We knew we wanted to spend more time at the Lodge so Mike was nice enough to fly us back out there before heading back to work. At the airport we got to see this cat take off. One of my favorites!

When we got to Shulin I had convinced both guys that I just HAD to get Aerial photos of the Beaver. Mike was my pilot and Eric climbed in with Steve. 

Here are just a few of the ones I got. 

We were in a HARD bank turn and I noticed my shadow on the wing! 

Eric and Mike with Mike's Maul. 

Off he goes!

It wasn't long after we had some fun that we were back to work. 

Time to fix that sinking dock/barge

Fire and Axe Throwing. Never done it before but we all managed to stick it at least once.

Steve busted out his harmonica which made the front porch sitting even better!

We decided to go and fish, again. Both guys held down the rocks for awhile while I read a book. 

The next morning Steve whisper yelled at me to come quick. I threw on clothes and ran to the window, grabbing my camera on the way. I barely had time to snap these of a mama and her baby in the yard. It was so amazing to see.

Want to know what is NOT amazing about Alaska? THE MOSQUITOS!!!!!!!!!!!!!! They're practically hummingbirds. I'm lucky b/c they don't really bite me very often. However, their buzzing can make you go crazy! I made a makeshift mosquito cover to keep the buzzing a bit further away. Muffled, if you will! 

Working on finishing up another project for Steve.

The short slats between the ceiling and the window timber needed to be filled in. Eric did a great job!

Steve had to run to town so we got a pretty amazing fly-by

Okay, so I already know you're going to say NO to this question but for the sake of being fair I'm going to ask anyway. Ever heard of putting chocolate sauce on salad, as dressing? No? Well, neither had I. Steve had been talking this up the entire time we had been there. He said it makes salad edible. He told me I HAD to try it at least once. Well, it was edible. Basically it just tasted like crunchy chocolate sauce. Not something I was repulsed by but also not something I'd do again, intentionally. Steve has some funny ideas! I think that's why I like him.

He also says he serves the coldest beer in Alaska. It's pretty much a slushy. He even goes and gets ice from glaciers and stores it for mixed drinks but he has to be on floats for that. Maybe next time we can go harvest glacier ice with him. 

Oh, you know, just the neighbor coming home after a long day. 

Loons on the lake.

Rain sprinkles

On our last night Steve took us on a cruise of the whole lake. We piled lawn chairs and blankets onto the barge/dock and headed to pick up the neighbors, who joined us. It was a slow, relaxing and fun way to end our visit. He convinced me to climb up on this steep/high little island at the end of the lake and this is the view from the top. It was worth it...only because somehow my camera didn't end up in the lake!

A gorgeous ending to a gorgeous day.

Our happy captain

Saying goodbye to Lisa and Kyle. 

The morning before I left the newest cabin was ready for pics so I took some. 

Eric and Steve built 2 tables that morning. This is 1 of them!

The 2nd story of the cabin.

Our fearless leader. This guy is a kick in the pants. I'd call him my bff but he'd look at me funny and tell me he already has a best friend. Thanks but no thanks! 

Steve flew us back to Anchorage on Saturday. I was NOT ready to say goodbye to him OR the Beav!

I noticed our spinner was a bit dirtier than my previous photos! Proof of a good trip!

They told me it was time to go.....

I REALLY DIDN'T WANT TO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We said our goodbyes to the Beav, spent the night in town and then Steve dropped us off Sunday morning. We had meeting in Anchorage and then headed home. 

All in all it really was the TRIP OF A LIFETIME. I haven't laughed or worked so much in 2 weeks in all my life. We didn't know Steve and Nadine all that well when we left out of here but I feel like spending 2 weeks together on an adventure made us all close. If you know how someone takes their coffee, what time they wake up in the morning, what dressing they like on their salad and they let you sleep in the same room as them, well, that makes you practically family! These are memories I will hold close in my heart, forever. Thank you SO much for letting us tag along on this adventure. 

ps. Consider us 2 VERY willing passengers the next time you find yourself with 2 empty seats. (Or even 1. Eric doesn't have to know) 

pps. If you want to go to this lodge and hang out with Steve on an adventure go to and tell Steve I sent you! 

(Bliss With A Twist Photography) adventure Alaska bush plane De Havilland Beaver flying photographer Sun, 22 Jul 2018 02:33:34 GMT
Flying to Alaska in a De Havilland Beaver PART 1 Steve & Nadine flew in on May 26, 2018. They landed at our place and spent the night. We loaded up and left the next morning for ALASKA!!!

Our first stop was Paine Field where we met up with their friend, Paul. He had won a ride in this Turbine Beaver on Amphibs and had invited them to join him. Eric, Nadine and I took the 3 extra seats while Steve planned our route and checked weather. It was my first time flying on floats and it was pretty cool. 

The views of Seattle were gorgeous. I LOVE this city!

We landed on several different lakes around the city.


Needless to say we were all smiles when we got back. Here's a picture of me with the first 2 pilots to ever fly me in Beavers. #1 was in a radial on wheels and # 2 was in a turbine Beaver on amphibs. Both in 1 day was pretty cool!


We left Paine field and headed across the border. We cleared customs in Campbell River.

From there we flew to Denny Island, BC. We decided to call it a night. The weather was pretty bad the next day so we decided to stay put. Nadine and I enjoyed the lodge and she did some laundry while the guys got the hair brained idea to go bush whack their way to find a wrecked PBY Catalina. It was NOT a trek for the faint of heart. Even the locals said they'd never make it. We both knew they wouldn't quit until they'd succeeded so when they returned with proof in the form of parts they'd scavenged off the wreckage, we weren't surprised at all! 

This is inside the lodge at Shear Water. I curled up in that recliner for the entire day and it was so cozy and relaxing!

The next morning we woke to clear skies and packed up our gear. 

So while we were cooped up at the lodge the day before we had met other travelers passing through. There was a group of guys on jet skis going from Edmonds, WA to Prince Rupert, B.C. We had hung out a bit and then discovered that one of them GOES TO MEETING! We know a bunch of the same people. Here we are on a tiny little island in the middle of nowhere, Canada and we meet one of the friends. It was so crazy. Anyway, we chatted over breakfast before they left on their jet skis and we left in the Beav. What a small world!

Some pics of the jet ski crew getting ready for their day of riding. 

The Shearwater Lodge. 

All packed up and ready to hit the skies.

Denny Island, B.C. Shearwater from the sky. Until next time...


We landed at Bella Bella for fuel. Nadine and I were happy girls to have beautiful skies and 2 great pilots up front.

Bever Fever. It's real folks!

Bella Bella harbor

Bella Bella airport

We noticed the camera had some stuff on it so Nadine wanted to clean it. Beavers are tall so Eric kindly gave her a boost. Good thing she's so small.

In the FBO we found a cute cat named Toast and coffee!

The sky was so blue and the spinner so clean that I had to do a few photos while I waited on the guys.

We took off and it wasn't long until we found rainbows. We saw several that day but this one was the most vibrant.

Depending on where the sun hits the water makes it seem Caribbean blue!

Our float ropes danced all the way there. We also saw lots of waterfalls along the way.

These 3 boats made a cool pattern with their wakes.

We spotted a lighthouse.

As you go along you can't take your eyes off the ground. It's so interesting the things your see. Not sure why there was this specific swirl and blow hole but it was interesting. 

We landed in Ketichikan for fuel and to check weather. They let us up in the tower and we got to see how they track planes the old school way. The cruise ships were in port. LOTS of them. 

We asked the tower guys if there was a decent restaurant close by. They said "go to the hole in the wall, downstairs." Little did we know it is LITERALLY a hole in the wall to a restaurant that is past security. You call, order and they bring you your food through this little locked pass through hole. I've never seen anything like it. 

Meanwhile Steve had discovered the stickers near the ticket counter and had been sneaking them onto Nadine's jacket. He kept asking her if she was cold and she had no idea why. I blew the secret when I couldn't stop laughing! 


Modern day navigation.

The first bear we saw. He got up on his back legs, roared at us (I assume) and ran off.

Eric happily manning the controls for a bit. 

When I looked out the window and saw this I could have sworn I was in a Caribbean movie. It was incredibly beautiful and I was so surprised we were in ALASKA with this view.

Sea lions

Our first glacier we saw.

Another thing I learned was that glacier water is NOT CLEAN. In fact it's horribly dirty. You can see the runoff here trying to mix with the clean water. 

After a good day of flying we decided to head to the forest service cabins for the night. We found one on the Upper Alsek River and decided to stay there for the night. Within minutes of landing Nadine had found a huge Moose rack and hauled it back to camp!

Lupines were EVERYWHERE!!! They each have a drop of water in the middle of them. It was fun to get out my macro lens and try to capture how unique they are.

This is the Alsek River. It was beautiful and looked very cold!

We never did see darkness on our trip but I did stay up late enough to get a picture of the Beav with the moon.

Camp all packed up and our nice porta potty. Not bad for the middle of nowhere.

Inside the cabin there were 2 bunk beds, an oil stove and lots of supplies. We wrote in the guest book and continued on our way.


Eventually we made it to Yakutat. A friend of Steve's owns this MASSIVE hanger he bought off the state of Alaska for $45. Inside there is a DC-3! That was a surprise! We got fuel and were off again.

We did some beach flying.

Floating glaciers. There's an eagle chilling on the top of this one, literally.

We got to Cordova and ended up calling it a day because weather was settling in. Not worth pushing it. 

Cordova's harbor. All the fishing vessels were in port.

Steve thumbed us a ride to town and the nice lady offered to come back and get us and take us back to the plane. Over lunch we decided to stay put for the night and called her back. She had mentioned that she's always debated opening part of her home as a b&b. We asked if she'd like her first 4 paying customers. She said sure and came and picked us up! We also saw a family friend, Greg Olsen, who lives there. 

Deb wanted a picture sitting in the cockpit so of course we obliged!

The next morning Deb and her husband let us take their truck to town to get coffee and check weather. 

We had to stop along the side of the road and both guys were pretty happy to recycle their coffee on the side of the road. haha

Since we had to wait on weather we went to the harbor and walked the docks. This is one of Deb's family's boats. 

These 2 eagles were just hanging out on the top of this mast in the middle of the harbor. I was pretty awestruck but the local fisherman said it's annoying that they poop all over his boat. I hadn't thought of that.

Nadine's goal of the entire trip was to take pictures of me....sometimes even while I'm taking pictures! haha AND SOMETIMES she just needs a little Steve lovin'. 

As I was walking the dock I noticed how many boats in a row were blue. 

Nadine and I had been noticing these unique jackets and vests everyone was wearing. Copper River Fleece was started in Cordova and natives design some of their trim ribbon. Steve made the time for us to go there and get a 'souviner' to take home. It was MUCH appreciated! You choose what you want and the ribbon you want and they sew it on right then and there. We both LOVE our new jackets!

We decided we better model our newest prized possessions when we got back to the plane. 

Nothing makes Steve quite as happy as a decaf mocha in the morning. The brownie points he'd just earned probably didn't hurt, either.

The runway to leave is on the opposite side of the road as where you tie down. Looking both ways for vehicle traffic was a new one for me. 

The home where we were welcomed the night before. Had to grab a couple aerials on the way by!

Cordova, AK

This man sure loves his co-pilot.

The great thing is that it's mutual!

An unsuspecting fishing boat that got bombed by marshmallows. Not sure if we hit the boat or not but it sure was fun trying!

Waterfalls for days!

Flying towards Anchorage, AK I looked out and saw ski jumps. They were MASSIVE!

We landed at a little airport to run and grab a few groceries. Again, we got to cross the road to get there. 

A blurry selfie. Well, it's better than nothing!

Our first look at the Lodge on Lake Shulin! 


(Bliss With A Twist Photography) adventure Alaska bush plane De Havilland Beaver flying photographer Sun, 22 Jul 2018 02:31:15 GMT