15,173 photos.

Hi, I’m Amber. I’m a snap-a-holic.

I currently have 11,639 photos in my iPhoto library (January 2009 to today). On Flickr, I have over 3,500 more! (Yes, I delete the ‘bad’ ones.) I snap a lot of photos, it’s true. I’m always the one who brings the camera along, a fact that makes people roll their eyes (but they thank me for it later). I just love having a visual reminder of the memories I’ve made.

At the end of May, Loni from Loni Found Herself tagged me to participate in HostelBookers 7 Super Shots. First, thank you to Loni for being interested in my photos! (The photos she selected of her own were spectacular- LOOK.)

Here we are, 19 days into June, and I still haven’t gotten around to posting my own 7 Super Shots. It’s not because I’m lazy. It’s because a collection of 15,000+ photos takes a long time to peruse. I took my time peeling through shot after shot of past trips, people, meals, experiences. I was transported back into various times in my life and flooded with memories. Sometimes it’s just best to savor that nostalgic feeling…so I did.

I’ve been lucky enough (particularly in the last few years) to visit some pretty incredible places, which resulted in many stunning photos. This is not a compliment to my own photography skills- when one is in gorgeous surroundings, it’s far easier to take gorgeous pictures. So instead of picking the most amazing, I just picked some of my favorites.

(They’re still pretty amazing. Click the photos for bigger versions!)

Drumroll, please! Here are my 7 Super Shots that:

…Take my breath away.


I’ll just say it: John tricked me into this view in the Northern Cascades. We had hiked all day up a winding trail lined with every color of wildflower imaginable. The views so far had been spectacular, and I was getting tired. After enjoying my Summit Treat (saved for when I reached the top), John suggested we see where the trail continued to lead. He suspected the effort would be rewarded with something incredible on the other side. Annoyed that I had wasted my Summit Treat on a faux summit, we kept going. The view off the other side was unlike anything I’d ever seen, and was a complete surprise. Talk about a treat.

…Make me smile or laugh.


You guys, that’s a baby humpback whale! On a trip to San Jose del Cabo last year, I saw my first breaching whale. There were lots of them, and each time we spotted one, we rushed to the binoculars (and the camera). One day, a large humpback started jumping, and this little mini followed her. It’s not every day one gets to watch a mother humpback playfully frolicking with her baby.

…Make me dream.


On one of our incredible road trips in Betty last summer, we made our way through West Yellowstone and stopped near this pasture for lunch. This photo embodies the ‘great wide open’ for me, and I love seeing our little bug of a trailer against the colors of summer. It makes me daydream for our next adventure.

…Make me think.


This granddaddy tree lives in Big Sur. It’s not even a high-quality photo- I think I took it with my iPhone. But I adore the perspective. How long has this tree been here? How many decades ago was it my height? How many more decades will it stand tall above the rest of the world? If trees could talk…

…Make my mouth water.


If you’ve been paying attention, you know that I love food. Making it, eating it- and photographing it. I have so many pictures of random meals, from campfire vittles to high-end deliciousness. I make memories with food, and this sandwich is no different. There is a Mom-and-Pop shop in Island Park, Idaho where you can get gas or pick up necessities. In the back, there’s a deli. If you’re lucky, your sandwich will be made by one of the owners- a friendly hippie couple. Don’t be in a rush. It will take forever to get your sandwich. Ask for the wasabi mustard. Have a seat by the river and enjoy the love they put into your lunch. You’re welcome.

…Tells a story.


Being friends with John for a decade made it difficult to make the leap into a relationship. I took this self-portrait on the San Francisco Embarcadero a couple of months before we started dating. I can see that we are meant to be, even though we didn’t know it yet. (Right after I took this photo, John got a giant splinter from scooting across the wooden bench. The ridiculous adventure of dealing with that changed our relationship forever, but that’s a story for another day.)

…I am most proud of.


I framed this photo and hung it in our home. We’re near a town called Moclips on the Washington coast. I love the sun’s rays shooting outward and the shadow John casts on the sand. The day really was as serene as it seems in this photograph. It’s a perfect representation of an idyllic moment, and reminds me how very lucky I am.

I have tagged quite a few fellow bloggers in recent weeks in response to blog award nominations (here, here, and here). But there are some whose photos are always inspiring to me in some way.

I’d love to see 7 Super Shots from:

This French Farmhouse

California Pixie

Hunting for Bliss

Bente Haarstad Photography

A Dozen Fedoras

Thanks again, Loni, for a trip down Memory Lane! (Stay tuned for the shots that didn’t make the cut!)


  1. Love, love, love…they all made me smile. Yellowstone is pretty much my #1 place to visit…someday I hope! A baby Humpback…are you kidding me? You are a lucky girl! Thanks for sharing:)

    1. Me, too! So you saw that I ventured into dessert-land before our July foodie challenge. I think for our ‘date’, I’ll try making pie crust from scratch since it’s on my life list. What are you thinking?

  2. Beautiful collection of photos! I’m from Montana so West Yellowstone made my heart skip a beat. I love the tree shot! I think it’s amazing how something can change just in adjusting one’s perspective.

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