Saturday, August 30, 2008
Friday, August 29, 2008
Also, remember these? I wasnt sure what they were called. Well, I found out...it's Squirrel Tail Grass. So, hey Kas, you were pretty close with animal tails. I think you were on to something. I miss you! Call me!
Also, I went out and picked a ton of berries today. I got two zip lock baggies full, washed em' up, and put them in the freezer for later this winter. I'm so glad I went out pickin' because the berries are lookin' kinda sparse. Thanks Kale, for the berry pickin' motivation and for the great conversation.
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Monday, August 25, 2008
Sunday, August 24, 2008
When we walked out of the store, we got the biggest laugh when we saw this dog sitting in a pickup truck in the parking lot. I thought it looked like a little bear cub sitting there and Chandra was convinced it looked like a man in a dog suit. So, we named it a Humadog.Then as we turned onto our road we saw this strange looking animal, which we dubbed the Foxdog or Kfox. Isnt it weird looking? It reminds me of the evil wolf thing from the Never Ending Story.
These are just two of the strange looking dogs around town. There are many more that I havent had an opportunity to snap a picture of.
Things are good here. We have been having beautiful weather. Not like the 40 days of rain of last year. It has been sunny and hovering around 70 each day. The dust and the gnats are terrible though. I was able to get out a pick some more berries yesterday. We had a fairly large housewarming/welcome party for the new teachers here in town. There are quite a few of them this year. I cooked up a ton of salmon in various ways...we had salmon salad, salmon cakes, garlic lime salmon, fish soup, and salmon native style. We all had a great time and full bellies.
I am really looking forward to this school year. The first few days have been great and already I am enjoying my new students. I have a new classroom, new supplies, and a great group of students. Avery already seems to be enjoying the junior high atmosphere.
We still have around 16 hours of sunlight left. It is disappearing swiftly though. We're losing 5minutes and 33seconds each day.
That's all for now! Good night!
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Right outside in our driveway, we have a bunch of these plants that I think are very neat looking. They are much more colorful than the picture displays. Anyone know what they are?And, of course, our massive open tundra for a backyard is full of berries. All you have to do is stand on the edge of the property and you can see a ton of berries. I'm looking forward to doing some more berry picking this weekend.
After the first frost, I'm hoping to also get some cranberries. There are lots of them out there in the tundra, but I've heard that they are better (sweeter?) after the frost. For now, the blueberries need a pickin' anyhow.
Here are some neighborhood kids hangin' around at the little playground right across the street from our house.
And a better close up view of the house. We've got an awesome wrap around deck that we can't enjoy because the bugs are soooooooo bad. Have I mentioned that I literally feel like I'm being eaten alive? Yes? Well, that's cause I do. For some reason all of the gnats are attracted to me. Avery and Chandra are fairly bite free. I am so used to being bitten that I've started feeling as though I'm being bitten even when I'm not. Hopefully they'll go away soon. We didnt have bugs like this last year. We've been having some really nice weather lately. Sunny and almost 70 today. I wanted to open the windows, but the gnats are small enough that they can get through. A friend told me that if you spray the screens with cooking spray that they cant get in. So, today when I couldnt keep the windows closed any longer, I tried it. and guess what? I totally worked. When I closed the window tonight, I noticed that the screen is covered with little dead gnat bodies. Gross, but way better than being eaten alive.
In other news...
Today was the first real day of school (yesterday was for the JH only). For some reason we keep forgetting to take a first day of school picture. Maybe I can get one tomorrow. My classes are great so far. Avery seems to be really doing well and enjoying the whole JH atmosphere. I really think that we're going to have a great year.
Sunlight update...the sun is still rising around 6:30am and not quite setting until around 11:30pm. so the days are still long and it's still hard to get to bed at night. Life is good!
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Sounds strange, eh? Actually, we have another road in town that is paved for awhile and then not and then paved again. I always wondered why they wouldnt just pave the whole thing. Come to find out that the unpaved portion runs through private property. While the owner of that property hasnt thrown any hissy fits and put up a blockage, the state wont pay to pave that portion of the road because it doesnt belong to them. Only in Alaska...
In other news...tomorrow is the first day of school! Already! I'm excited and looking forward to a really great year. My classroom was remodeled this summer and is nice and fresh. I also ordered a bunch of new supplies for this year so that I can do some labs with my Biology students. I even got some little fetal pigs for dissection in the spring! Yay!
The gnats (noseum's?) here are unbelievable. I have so many bites on my arms that I look like I have chicken pocks or something. They itch like crazy. I feel like I'm being eaten alive.
We've pretty much settled into our new house and like it very much. It's nice to be in an actual house (not a duplex) with all the space and amenities that come with it. Avery has a real nice set up going in his room with a bed and couch and a little flat screen tv to play video games and watch cable with his buddies. I will take some pics and get them up when I get a chance (Kevin).
I havent been reading lately, so no reading updates. I did manage to watch several movies the other night, but nothing spectacular.
Hmmmm...what else? I think I better get some sleep before the first day of school...
Sunday, August 17, 2008
Once we get some snow, we'll be able to go right out our backyard to go snowmachinin'. I can't wait!
Saturday, August 16, 2008
What's the point, you ask? How does this make Bethel garage sale heaven?
Friday, August 15, 2008
Today is the blogs first birthday. I can't believe it's been a year since I started blogging my Alaskan/life adventure. Here we are 238 blog posts later. I've had almost 2000 visits to the blog since February, so I estimate I've probably had somewhere near 4000 visits to the blog since it's conception. The blog has been there for me in my times of need, helping me to keep my sanity during the cold, dark, lonely Alaskan winter. The blog has helped link me to friends back home and help make new ones. The blog has witnessed the good times and the bad. The blog has been the source of many good laughs. I hope you've enjoyed it as much as I have.
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
We cleaned the carpets at the new house last night and are planning to move in tonight. The phone is connected and the number is the same as it was last year, so everybody needs to give me a call or I will make sure to try to call everybody sometime this week/weekend.
I'm sitting in the 2nd day of inservice right now. I cant believe the summer is over already. I miss everybody back home, but I'm really having a great time getting reacquainted with my Bethel friends.
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Avery and his friend, Smokey, hangin' out.
Byron Glacier a little closer up and the melt runoff stream that comes from it.
We hiked the trail up to the glacier.
There was an avalanche earlier this year, so there was quite a bit of snow pack under the glacier.
Where in the world can you throw snowballs in August? Alaska! Can you spot the snowball?
Avery decided to try to climb the side of this mountain.
He made it to just above the tree line, then we had to go.
And here's a strange sight...88.5 octane? Never heard of such a thing...until now! FYI...gas in Bethel is $5.97 a gallon.
First day of work is tomorrow! Yay me! We got a ton of cleaning done at the new house today and planning to clean the carpets tomorrow and move in the next day. The phone should be up and running sometime this week. The number is the same as it was last year. Hopefully I'll be able to call you all sometime this weekend. Miss everybody, but it's also good to be back. I've been having a good time catching up with all my Bethel friends.
Our flight out of Chicago was scheduled for 7:20, but we didnt actually leave until 8 or so. By the time we got into the air, the sun was setting. It made for a very nice view. Here is the sunset over chicago.
But the really interesting thing is that because we were traveling west and north, we basically chased the sun and for the entire flight we got to watch the sun set. Here is the sunset after we got above the clouds.
And 6 hours later, here is the sun (still setting) over Alaska. Pretty neat, eh?
I figured out that if I load the pictures one at a time, it works, but it's a pretty long process, so I'll try to post again when I have better internet.
Saturday, August 09, 2008
We will be moving into our new house on Friday. The phone number will be the same and should be working by then. So, you will all hear from me probably sometime this weekend. Take care...more soon.
Wednesday, August 06, 2008
Monday, August 04, 2008
Statement as of 8:40 am EDT on August 4, 2008
record event report
National Weather Service Bethel AK
430 am akdt Mon Aug 4 2008
... Cool morning for August 3rd...
The morning low temperature for Bethel Alaska for Sunday August
3rd indicated a new record had been set when the Mercury dipped
to 39 degrees at 620 am akdt. This edged out the NWS record low
temperature for the day... 40 degrees first set in 1954 and tied
However..historical records from other government agencies from
the Bethel area have indicated the daily record low temperature
is lower than the NWS records. Those records listed an all-time
record low temperature for August 3rd as 34 degrees set in 1928.
The storm last night was very much an electrical storm. I miss having storms like this. We dont get thunder and lightening in Bethel, although we get lots of rain. There wasnt much cloud to ground lightening. Most of it was cloud to cloud, but the sky was lit up like fireworks exploding and the thunder sounded like the sky was splitting open. The thunder was actually pretty amazing. It sounded like it was in 3D...the sounds rolled across the sky. Very cool!