Posted By: randomandodd  //  Category: Random



I went to lunch with a friend from Jerusalem yesterday.  We met when we were both skydiving in 2009 and remained friends because we have so much in common.  When he moved, I didn’t think it would be for so long, but he loves the difference he is making over there and finally came home for a visit.
While walking through the shops in old town I was pointing out all the weird stuff I love. He said, “Someday when you meet a nice guy and move in together…” and I cut him off right there.  “I’m not interested in meeting a nice guy. I had a nice guy and I loved him to death. I’m interested in learning to love myself that much and to love myself as much as he loved me.  IF I can figure that out, there is a chance I will survive this crazy life.”  He didn’t understand that I wasn’t looking for a relationship, “Is that what you say, but deep down you really want someone in your life?”
Being happily married to a wonderful woman I can see how he didn’t understand where I was coming from.
“No, I really don’t.”

Last weekend I spent the night with some friends and had a great night with lots of laughs. I got up the next morning and went to a photoshoot for some other friends.  Now here’s where I realized how incredibly happy I am with my life;  The dad was in bad mood.  Mom was awesome. Kids were great.   We grabbed a bite to eat before we headed out and I watched Dad just being a big ol’ grumbly bear and I just smiled. I know this family…I have been friends with Dad for nearly 17 years.  He wasn’t in a good mood AT ALL.  They all climbed in their SUV and I climbed into my little car and waited as they got the kids strapped in and watched the grumble grumble.  My music was playing the music I wanted to listen to and I sang along as I followed them to the photoshoot location.  My heart nearly exploded with happiness when I realized that not a single ounce of my amazingly great mood could be ruined by another person in my life.  This amazingly great mood wasn’t brought on by someone else either, it was MY good mood.   I wouldn’t have to sit in a car with someone and ask, “You mad at me?”  or “Want to talk?”  Nope, I don’t have to feel like shit about being in one mood another. I can be happy in my car singing and without a single person I needed to let know where I was going or when I would be back.

After the shoot was over, I walked around the old town and popped into shops. I sat down in a coffee shop alone and people watched. Smiling the whole time.  As I made my way back to the car, I said quietly…”I love my life.”

I want to always be THIS happy.

Posted By: randomandodd  //  Category: Random


Well, I bit the bullet and bought the D750.  My bank account is cringing, but I did it.  Now to upgrade all my lenses.  Who said photography was cheap never owned a camera.

I have 2 sessions to finish editing and then I have photo shoots all the way up until Christmas. This time of year is busy.  It wasn’t suppose to be busy because the “Closed” sign has been up on my photography business for the last year.  Luckily for me, it’s been new friends, old friends and family that I have been able to capture this year. No strangers.

Things have made a significant shift in my life.  The quiet is getting deafening, but my balance is finally coming back.  I feel like Julia Roberts in Runaway Bride where she has to figure out what eggs she likes.  I just reread that and had to laugh.  The girls use to say that I remind them of Julia Roberts from each of her movies.  Kara once told me that “My Best Friend’s Wedding” was the most like me because I don’t like all that ‘icky love stuff’.  That was the point where I decided that I needed to be a little less closed and let people love me, show me love, be loved.    It’s been many years, but I keep reminding myself it’s okay for people to show me love.  It’s just…I don’t know how to receive it a lot of the time.
This time it’s the eggs.
I’ve never dated myself before so I am learning how to show myself love and find out the things that *I* like.   Before I would watch whatever they were watching. Listen to the station they had on.  Spend time doing or going where they thought would be fun.
Don’t get me wrong, I did this by choice.  “Whatever you wanna do…eat…watch…listen to…it’s fine by me, I don’t care.” and truthfully, I don’t really care.  It’s just now that those things are solely my decision and I have no one to run them by, I have to learn what I want to do, eat, watch and listen to.
I like to meditate, eat bacon, watch discovery shows and listen to a plethora of different music.
I like spending time with people and hearing their stories.
Last weekend I was in downtown and I called a friend to meet me for breakfast out of the blue. SHE SHOWED UP!  I need to do shit like that more.
My other friend invited me go snowshoeing with her, which turned into a snow camping trip!  This is my life now and I am okay with it…but changes always come and I need to be strong for those changes.

Code man is going to be a daddy.

Posted By: randomandodd  //  Category: Random



I went to Redding to do a photo shoot for my family and my camera decided it was going to have the mirror lock up every 3 photos.  I’ve had that camera for almost 8 years, it’s been to Nikon twice for repairs.  I am not complaining in any way, shape or form.  It’s time to retire her though.
Whenever I decide to buy something I either go full research mode or just buy it on the spot and hope it works out.  I’ve been researching for about a year what kind of camera will replace my 300.  My first choice was the D810.  At least 15 trips into Action Camera to test it out and I decided against it.   It has the perfect grip for me because it’s a bit bigger, but it was too heavy…especially since I bit the bullet and bought the damn 70-200 2.8.   My next option was the d750, but it didn’t have many of the extras I wanted, but FINALLY it does.
So I go into the camera store yesterday and they don’t have it in stock. FUCK. Seriously?    Next weekend I guess.

I went to San Fran this weekend for a photo shoot. SO FUCKING BEAUTIFUL.   The weather was out of this world perfect.  For the first time in a long time I am excited about editing.
I’ve decided that I am going to try to go to the city once a month and do some trail runs along the beach. It’s too perfect not to and I am ready for that kind of workout.

Things are good.  I’m good.

PTC 2016

Posted By: randomandodd  //  Category: Random



I finally got the hiking crew on the Pacific Crest Trail and they are  HOOKED.
I have been slowly getting my gear together for my 40 mile in 4 day hike next year and I was hell bent on doing with or without them.  During the week I go to REI and get more one on one time with the people that have done this and I ask a million questions and get a million different answers.   So far I have my tent and my sleeping back. Both are ultra light. The backpack I have is far to heavy and I am going to get an Osprey light weight pack.  I am willing to sacrifice some things for light weight gear and apparently that is all the money I have in my account.

In the last month I realized that my Nathan pack has tasted kind of wonky.  After many attempts of cleaning it, I decided to bite the bullet and buy a new bladder. Hopefully it will make a difference because I was having to drink bottled water on the trail and HELLLLOOOOO did I look like a damn rookie.

So, the single life.  If I could get a grade at it, it would be an A+.  This is exactly where I need to be in my life.
In the last two weeks I have weaned myself off all medication and I feel so much better.  Looking back on the last year, it was really rough. I was battling demons I had no idea were even there.  There was a hope that after I got better that I would invite a certain person back into my life, but that ship sailed when I noticed that this person deleted all the music that as a couple we had put into a file.  Those songs meant more to me than any physical possession he gave me.  Those melodies and words are what got me through and made me fall in love deeper than I had ever expected.  I haven’t been that angry and upset in a very long time.  LUCKILY, my meditation came to the rescue and I was able to recenter quickly.
Now I am free of medication and any relationship.  Life is damn good.

I’m ready to make 2016 as amazing as 2012.  No, i’m ready to make it amazinger. (yes, that is a word)

Happy- checkitycheckcheckcheck.
Can do whatever I want, whenever I want without feeling a single bit of guilt- CHECK.




Posted By: randomandodd  //  Category: Random

The cell phone rang and when I checked who it was. My heart sunk….”Daddy Calling”. This can’t be good. He doesn’t call very often and when he does it’s not always the best news. At my parent’s age, I get a jolt of fear anytime one of my siblings that live close to them calls me. It’s not until I hear the tone of the “Hey sis…” do I finally breath.

I answered the phone, “Hey Daddy!” …and I waited for his tone, which is always kind of hard to read anyway.
“Why hello! I haven’t talked to you in a coon’s age!” I could breath again.

He spent the next 30 minutes telling me about his new motorcycle (he’s in 70’s) and all the trips he has gone on. He sent me pictures and as painful as it is to see him age, he’s doing it with flare. He then told me that he has a trip planned in 2016 to Bryce Canyon, UT. With a squeal of delight I invited myself and told him that if he didn’t let me go with him that I would write him out of my will. He agreed to let me ‘tag along’ on his adventure and he would put the side car on the old motorcycle and let me ride with him. Without hesitation I said, “Or I can catch a flight out there and meet you there.” INSTANTLY I wanted to suck the words back into my mouth and out of existence. My thought was, ‘damn, that’s a long time to be shoved into a side car and i’m kinda old for that kind of…oh shit.’
“Naw, Kristine….it will be fun.”
“Yeah Daddy…it will be an adventure.” I need to lose weight before we go because he may be in his 70’s, but I got a few lbs on that old man and I hurt at a younger level.

I have been stalking Bryce Canyon for about a year now and if you follow my Pintrest board of hikes or places I want to see, you’ll see that is top of the list.

This might be my last adventure with my daddy, so I have sworn to call more often and make this one to remember. I have my tent. Now for all the other goodies!

It’s already September.

Posted By: randomandodd  //  Category: Random

I will be out of town for the last two Mindful classes, this makes me sad because I have come so far and I wanted to finish it off with the group I started with, but decided that I am going to take the class again. There is just so much more to learn.
There are some classes in San Francisco that I want to attend. I can tell that they are working, it’s just one of the hardest things I have had to do. Skydiving is easier than successfully meditating.

This Saturday I spent a quiet day at home. The smoke was too thick to go hiking and I really enjoyed my quiet apartment. At the end of the day a friend asked how I was doing and I evaluated my state of mind. I said I usually enjoy my alone time, but by the end of the day of solitude I actually felt ‘alone’ and ‘lonely’. I was longing for human contact and I rejoiced in that emotion because that is one of those things I have been working on. Being on medication for anxiety makes me want to climb under a rock and growl at anyone that comes near me. I decided that Sunday I would spend some time with the brats and get some stuff done. Being mindful that I NEEDED that contact with people.

Today is Monday and short week for me. I will soon get to spend some quality time with my family. That’s my favorite medicine.


Posted By: randomandodd  //  Category: Random

Pathetic. I know.

So I have been tracking my food on my fitness pal app and I started to really see what I was eating. I reversed that type of eating and I went too far.
I started with a protein shake for breakfast, a salad for lunch and something low carb for dinner.
I was averaging about 1700 calories a day.
After a month I started getting lazy and went to 2 shakes a day. Now with the break up…i’m at 3 a day and nothing else. I swear to GOD, I want to eat…I even tried to eat breakfast this morning and it tasted SO sugary. When did sausage start tasting like a spoonful of sugar?
I’m at 500 calories a day and it’s just stupid. I know this and I hate it.
Food just doesn’t taste good.

Ugh. I will get through this.

Hate isn’t sustainable.

Posted By: randomandodd  //  Category: Random

Years ago I went through a stint of watching a television show called “Hoarders”. I was in a unhappy relationship where I felt I was giving my all and not getting the same love in return. On this one episode it was of a very large woman living in a small home packed with things that gave her comfort. Her collections of stuffed animals and other knick nacks. The home was nearly impossible to navigate through and the kitchen was packed with so many things that the only thing that would work to make food, that could be accessed, was the toaster oven.
In this episode they interviewed the boyfriend of this woman. He was a good looking man, had a home that was clutter free, but he spent his time with her, struggling to get through the madness of her home so he could heat her up some food or just spend time with her. They asked him why he put up with it, he said…”Because I love her.”
While watching this episode I was shaking my head and saying to myself, “Why are you doing this, you idiot? This is YOUR one life you get and you’re wasting it on someone who is clearly sick. You could be doing so much and you’re here in this FILTH of an existence. Get away from the sickness and maybe you’ll see how she’s dragging you down into her pit of hell!”
Then he said he loved her and I was all, “Oh for the love of Christ. I am healthy, of fairly good looks, I am talented and loving and I DON’T LIVE IN FILTH!…why can’t someone love me like that?”

A few years later I was given that kind of love and I couldn’t believe I could be so lucky. Someone truly loved me.
On a photo shoot in L.A. I had a meltdown of sorts. I had been battling my 19 year anxiety disorder and had it mostly under control when all the sudden the anxiety turned into a depression I had not experienced for a very long time. I hid it until I got home and then and then I was unable to cope with any situation from everyday life. Everything was, “just too much. i can’t. i just can’t keep doing this.” The simplest of tasks made me so fearful that I would lock up and lay down, waiting for the nausea and hammering heart to subside. It felt like it never quite did.
It was soon after that I knew that I had to get on medication, talk to someone and hopefully get some kind of handle on what was going on with me.
I was working on the first month of medication when I started to slowly feel a shift, but that first month was trial and error of trying to get a handle on what time to take each medication so I wouldn’t wake up a zombie the next day. I was informed I should take it at bedtime. For someone who has insomnia I had to guess as to what time normal people went to sleep and I took it at 10pm. Zombie. The two weeks was trying to pinpoint the exact time to take it. Of course, by the time I figured it out, my body was use to the medication and I was constantly altering the time. It was a struggle with just that one aspect of the medication, the next came when I realized I had absolutely no interest in spending time with anyone, talking to anyone, I became very disconnected. I have interest and hobbies. I love to hike and take photos. The thought of leaving my house was so overwhelming that I didn’t do any of these things unless I was forced.
Work was a daily challenge. On a day to day basis I am unsure as to what kind of day I am walking into. It was my job to be certain that everyone always stayed calmed and if they didn’t, I did, so I could lead them through the chaos until it was over. All the while with a fake smile answering the phones and dealing with customers. By the time I got home through traffic I was mentally and physically exhausted. Yes, I was making it through the day without the thought of hoping my next breath was my last…but just to function. If I could get through the day without mentally shutting down it was a success and that is really all I was doing. A zombie with a smile.

This brings me back around to the episode of “Hoarders” where I was pissed at the guy for sticking around through her sickness. His one life.
This wonderful person I was blessed with, he spent countless days trying to find what it would take for me to be the happy person he was with when we got together. Bending over backwards to make me genuinely smile. The thing is, there was nothing I could do that could bring her back unless I went off the medication and got it out of my system. If I did that I risked being back in the dark place I was two months ago. Scared I wasn’t going to see my daughter graduate or the day they got married.
He would have stayed. He would have spent as long as it took for me to get back to the fun girl who tickle him and lay on the couch and watch stupid tv shows. I couldn’t do that to him. It wasn’t just him, I shut everyone out. My sister, my best friend, my family. If I had my wish, it would to just sit alone in my apartment in silence and stare out the window. Finally understanding why mental patients did that. It’s calming. You’re safe in there…you don’t have to communicate and try to pretend that you’re okay.
I could see how my illness was draining him too. It’s frustrating when you’re trying to do everything to get someone to want to live, to laugh, to talk…to be in love; to be normal…..and they don’t respond at all. He would have spent all this time trying to save my life when I wasn’t trying to save my own.

He hates me now. I understand all the things he’s going through. I broke up with him to set him free from all this, and also selfishly because it was breaking my heart to see him so sad. It was like looking at my failure in the face and seeing what I was doing to another human being. I couldn’t get well fast enough for him and I don’t know how long it will be until I am okay again.
I’m in an 8 week class and round 2 of blood tests. 3 different medications. I have no idea.

Someone said, “Hate isn’t sustainable.” and that is what I keep holding on to. Someday he won’t hate me for the choices I had to make to save my life….and his future.

fermare…to stop.

Posted By: randomandodd  //  Category: Random




Whoa. This last month has been incredibly difficult to get through.

When I got back from L.A. from shooting this wedding I fell into this really dark place in my head.
Everything was to overwhelming and I just couldn’t function. I mean, I did function. That is something I have learned I do. Get up and keep going.  There wasn’t a single moment that I wasn’t silently chanting, “i can’t do this anymore. i can’t. it’s all just too much.”   The stress of everything finally caught up with me and it ripped me open and pulled me to this place I hadn’t visited in so very long.
Within days I knew I couldn’t do this alone and I reached out for help from my doctor who basically told me I needed to lose weight and get a grip on my emotions.  (just for the record, asshat…being overweight doesn’t instantly make people depressed.)  I did demand that he send me to a specialist and get blood work done.  This wasn’t my first rodeo with anxiety and depression.  Ugh. I hate that I have to use the word ‘depression’ because that isn’t a word I would ever associate with myself.  There are people in my life that fight that depression battle and what I was feeling doesn’t even come close to what they have to deal with.   This was just a short term thing…or so I kept telling myself.

The specialist couldn’t help me.  She was amazing though. FINALLY someone that might not have suffered what I was going through, but was sympathetic to where I was.  As we finishing up our eval she sat back in her chair and said, “That was the first time in all the years that I have felt like I actually was talking to someone that wasn’t just here to get drugs.”  It’s sad that she said that, but I know what kind of society we live in and for those of that need help can’t get it because of the abuse.   She spent the next 20 minutes trying to locate someone that could help me and wrote my doctor a letter.  Despite the letter, he refused to help.
I hate our health care system.

I’ve gotten back to hiking and during those times I seem to be able to get back to where I need to be.  I got the new Garmin Vivoactive. It’s alright. There are some strange quarks that I need to figure out before the next outing.
I have tiny little wrists and it’s taking some getting use to having it on all the time.

This weekend is Western States 100 mile endurance run. I’m volunteering again this year.  It will be weird not being at Foresthill, but I am glad I am getting the opportunity to get back out there and do this again!

I’m still working on my next installment of “SELF”.   I have been thinking about it a lot lately and more aware of when someone uses the word ‘self’ or when I say “My” or “Myself”.  It’s helping me through this place I am still in.


Cognosco…I recognize.

Posted By: randomandodd  //  Category: Random

I was on my way home from work one day and I had my Pandora set to a comedy station because Lord knows that I need a little comedy after some of the days I have there.

The skit started out like a self help workshop delivered in a high pitch emphatic tone and before I had a chance to change the channel, I heard something that resonated so deep in my soul I had to quickly pull over to find the name of the comedian.  Katt Williams.  I had never heard of him, but when he was talking about women saying “You messed up my self esteem…” and his response was “Bitch it’s called SELF ESTEEM! It’s the esteem of ya Mutha Fuckin Self Bitch… How did I fuck up how YOU feel about YOU?”   instead of laughing, it was an AH-HA moment for me.

It was then I started the dissecting of the words associated with the word SELF.

It was time to start analyzing and examining the words I put with SELF.   Self is ME and the person I am.  What words in the past had I used without any thought to ownership?

My esteem is what I feel about myself.  Be it a high or low esteem should be based on no one’s assessment of me…it’s not their esteem to assess. It’s mine. It’s my very own sense of worth.


I decided that I will start researching the word “SELF” and what it really means and begin listening to words that I put with it.
It was during a hike with a friend when she said something about “Self Hate” and I thought about those two words separate from each other.  Self…me.  Hate..the ugliest word in our vocabulary.  Why would I want to put those two words together?
Nearly every single day when I open up Facebook I read some inspirational quote about one thing or another.  “Be careful how you talk to yourself. You’re listening.”  I’m probably guilty of sharing this one at some point in the last 6 years.   This was the first time though that I really thought about it.

So this starts a series of writing about Point A (where I am) to Point B (the place I am on my way to)  and this journey to get me there. It starts with not assigning anyone with the ownership of my esteem.  It will journey through the extradition of blame that I had assigned to people in my past with the destruction. It will show me better ways to talk to myself and even more important how I LISTEN to myself.
Hopefully through this I will stop throwing around words that have no right being paired together.


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