"A mind once stretched by a new idea can never regain its original dimensions." ~Oliver Wendall Holmes

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Friday, January 31, 2014

Number 16: Update my vacation journal and photo albums

Since my freshman year of college, I've been keeping all my pictures in a yearly photo album.  I used the big three ring albums and had my film developed a roll at a time so when I inserted the photos they were always in order.  And then came the digital photography.  I resisted digital for awhile because I always liked the quality of film better, but as digital cameras got better and more convenient, my resistance didnt last long. 

A few years ago, I saw that making photo books was approximately the same cost as just having the photos printed and buying an album.  I have to upload the photos to print them anyway, so decided to try the photo books instead.  And then I put it off and put it off.  For three years.  So, over Christmas break this year when we were ordering Avery's senior pictures online, I noticed they were having a buy 1, get 2 free special on photo books.  Perfect!  I was behind 3 years.  I got to uploading and creating and they turned out fantastic!  I love them!
Meanwhile, my vacation journal has not been updated for just as many years, maybe more.  So, I sat down with my iphoto open and started documenting my vacations in my journal.  My goal is to be finished updating it in time for my Hawaii trip next month so I can start fresh.  It's always so much better to write it down when it's fresh in your mind because you forget all the small details that make vacations so wonderful.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Number 3: Visit the southern hemisphere, go on a cruise, or get a tan over Christmas Break

I stayed in Bethel this year over Christmas break, so I bought a tanning package and got a tan.  Now I've been keeping up my tan a little so I'll be ready for the beach in Hawaii over spring break in a few weeks.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Number 2: Volunteer somewhere/get involved in Bethel community

Can you imagine what being homeless would be like in a place like Bethel, Alaska?  The bitter cold.  The lengthy darkness.  The howling wind.  Sounds dismal.

In December, the Lions club in Bethel decided that they were going to address the problem of homelessness in Bethel by opening a homeless shelter called Bethel Winter House.  As of now, it will only run in the winter and is being housed on a month to month rotating schedule at various local churches.  It is completely run by volunteers and donation.

Since I love to cook, I decided to sign up to help with meals.  I am cooking for them most Mondays until they close at the end of March.  I get everything ready on Sunday, cook it Monday, and deliver it to the Winter House on Monday nights.  The guests have been very appreciative!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Number 21: Create 1 piece of art/craft each month

Plus, I made a zen doodled journal for a friend which had about 20 pieces in it and created a calendar using all of Avery seniors photos.  I also sewed and stuffed a dog bed for Ryder and made some homemade paper.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Number 18: Start sending birthday cards again

For years, I sent a birthday card to everyone I knew.  If I knew your birthday and your address, you were going to get a cards from me.  Because... doesnt everyone like getting mail on their special day, right?  And then, I got jaded.  I started to get selfish.  I started to think more about the fact that no one sent me cards for my birthday and I stopped caring about making other people happy.  I started to think about how everybody is taking the easy way out and just wishes you a happy birthday after facebook reminds them that it's your birthday and I figured nobody really cares anymore.

But I dont want to be jaded.  And I dont want to be selfish.  So, starting this January, I am back at it again!  I've sent out cards for January and am starting to get cards ready for February.  I'm coming around.  I'm figuring out that it's worth it to do something small, but special, to put a smile on another persons face.

Number 29: Visit the library more

I've visited the public library several times this year and checked out several books from the school library as well.  That's not alot of visits to the library, but it's more than previous years when it was none.  So, there's that.

Number 10: Complete a half marathon

  1.1 miles, then abs and stretching, feel good, running/sprinting some
+1.1 miles, then abs and stretching, feel really good, running/sprinting
+2.2 miles, then abs and stretching, start to feel the burn, running some
+3.3 miles, then abs and stretching, really feel the burn, getting bored
+3.3 miles, then stretching, what the hell was I thinking, this is awful
+2.1 miles, want to lay down on the treadmill/cry/crawl, jogged more
+4:10 hours
1 treadmill half marathon complete!!!

This pic shows my last 2.1 miles

Yesterday, I went to the gym for our first Bethel Biggest Loser weight training and yoga workout of the season, but no one showed up.  My challenge this week is to walk to the airport, but it was crazy blizzard windy.  My friend, Erin, has had me thinking of my birthday list alot lately.   Since there arent many opportunities to run marathon living here, I decided to kill three birds with one stone and just walk a half marathon on the treadmill.  I really wanted to quit at miles 10, but I kept thinking to myself, "if this were a real half marathon, you wouldnt quit!!!  Just finish!"

I got in a great workout, completed my BBL challenge, and checked number 10 of my list!

Village Spotlight: Kwethluk

Old BIA school trails

A couple of winters ago, my friend Chris showed me some trails over my the old BIA school.  At the time I thought they would make great ski trails also.
Angie and I loaded up the dogs one day last winter and we went to discover these trails on skis.
The trails were in a little hilly area, which was alot of fun on skis.  There were lots of willows for wind blockage and the dogs enjoyed the romp.
I had always wanted to check out this area of building which the students here call "the buildings".
Fun day.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Number 30: Hike more of the appalachian trail

After a couple of days of rest and recuperation, Doug took my on a little hike through the mountains of North Carolina.  We only hiked a small portion of the Appalachian Trail, but every little bit takes my breath away with it's beauty.

Number 27: No bread for two weeks

I was challenged by a friend of mine to go for two weeks without bread, so that's what I did!  For the first two weeks of summer, I went without bread (except that one day I cheated and had pizza).  It really didnt change the way I felt or my weight.  And now the non-gluten trend is starting to reverse.  And the pendulum swings back the other direction!

Number 25: Play frisbee golf at two new courses this summer

Took a break from working on the house this summer to play an immaculately groomed 18 hole course just east of Lima, Ohio called Ottawa Park.  It was a nice course with a wide open section and section through dense trees.  The tees were well take care of and the holes were new.  There was a great patch of mulberry trees along the west edge of the course.  We had a little snack.

The second new course was one I went to with my friend Chris and all his groomsmen the day before is wedding day!  The course was about 30 minutes outside of Burlington.  On the very first hole, I threw my disc out of bounds and had to retrieve it in the middle of an orange mud ditch.  I spent the rest of the course walking around with mud on my bum, but we had a good time.  The course had some interesting up and down hill holes.

Number 23: Finish Rune Factory Frontier

It took a long time.  This was a LONG, TEDIOUS game, but I had fun playing it. 

Number 19: Stop smoking completely

I've only smoked 4 cigarettes this year and the last one was nearly six months ago.  So, I think I'm done.


Number 13: Join an exercise class

Joined and ran the workouts for the Bethel Biggest Loser competition this year, so that will have to be that!

Number 12: Put my house up for sale

After a lifetime of memories and a summer of really hard work, the house is finally on the market! 

Number 9: Read 5 more books of the list

Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
I read this one in print.  I think the thing the struck me the most about this book was how different is was from the classic Alice in Wonderland movie.  Some parts of the movie are really not even in the book at all!

Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery
I listened to an audio version of this.  It's a really lovely coming of age story, but what I liked the most about it was the perspective of a different time period.  I have continued listening to the whole series and am currently on the 5th book.

The Secret Garden by Frances Burnett
I listened to an audio version of this while doing alot of painting.  Painting walls, painting closets, painting ceilings, painting with my ipod in my bra to hold it close to my ears :)  I did read this as a kid, but it really had a different meaning for me as a parent.

Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray
Also listened to this while working on the house, mostly while painting.  I had a hard time following the story in the beginning, but really enjoyed it once I knew what was going on.

Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
Don't bother with this story.  Boring and pointless.

Number 7: Go Camping

 In the middle of summer, I took a break from remodeling the house and headed to Wisconsin for a camping trip with Avery and my friend's son, Adam.  First, we spent three nights at Devil's Lake State Park near the Wisconsin Dells.  Devil's Lake was a huge campground on an expansive chunk of state land.  There were innumberable hiking trails and a huge lake with canoe rentals.  We had fun spending the days in the Dells and the night around the campfire.
 Willow River State Park is just east of the Wisconsin Border from Minneapolis.  Adam and I dropped Avery off at wrestling camp in Minnesota and then proceeded to spend three more night camping next to another lovely river.  The park office lent out fishing polls and tackle for free.  Adam spent his time fishing, Ryder spent his time chasing balls, and I spent my time reading books.  At night, Adam learned to cook over a campfire and kick my butt at Monopoly.
Fun times and good memories!