For more years than I care to count I have dreamed of going to Israel. I want to photograph the Holy Land. And I want to go for a month. Opportunities have presented themselves before, but none of them were exactly what I dreamed so I let them pass me by.

On the one hand I had the conviction that I was holding on to my dream, my vision. On the other I was wracked with fear that the perfect opportunity may never come. What if I missed my chance because refused to settle? After all,  “The perfect is the enemy of the good.”

I waited for years. And suddenly, this year, it all came together. And now it is official, I am going to Israel in Spring of 2018. I have permission from my editor to take the time off from the Daily Inter Lake (although having a photographer gone for that long will not be easy on them.) I have begun my research. I like to start with library books, but this is kind of specific, so I’ve had to send away for a few I really wanted. And now I am in the process of gathering and sorting information and ideas, trying to get a jump on where exactly I want to be, so I can hit the ground running.

This weekend Montana got quite a lot of snow dumped on us. About 14 inches at my place, but just north of us, they got 31. It was the perfect weekend to spend indoors researching. I have also begun a journal just for this project. Someplace where I can keep all my ideas together. I’ve been keeping journals for 16 years, but none quite like this. And since I am still a year away from photos I thought I would share some of the pages from my journal.

This is going to be an adventure I will never forget. I have so much to prepare. Gear to buy. Rules and restrictions to learn. Tons more research. Money to save. Plans to make. And so many beautiful dreams to enjoy and eventually make real.

The light of this dream, the approaching reality of it, makes every day brighter. I know that all of 2017 is going to be more joyful for me because of this. I also know that it will fly. And I have “miles to go before I sleep.”