Sunday, January 30, 2011

Flying Wild Alaska, our weekend, and simplifying meals

Flying Wild Alaska..... have y'all seen it? I LOVE this show. It is the one show I actually record and watch now every week. It follows a family run airline in bush Alaska. Now we live in the bush since we are off the road system... but we live in a town with 3500 full time residents, and 6 fish processors. While it is the bush, and is a very different way of life, it is nothing like the isolated bush communities the show features. It really is amazing to see the way of life. If you haven't watched it, you definitely have to tune in one night. Comes on on Fridays.

Anyway, this weekend was good. We got more snow, more then we have gotten so far this winter, and we spent today outside for several hours. We built a snow fort, went sledding, played hide and seek....lots of fun. Then tonight we went to a birthday party for a 7 year old son of one of DH's employees. It was a HUGE party. They are Filipino and even had a whole roasted pig. The food was incredible. There were 2 pinatas for the kids, and goody bags, and dolls for the girls, and balls for the boys as party favors. A had a great time, and crashed soon after we came home.

I was busy baking Friday. A and I made biscuits, and then instead of baking them, I flashed froze them and now have them all in the freezer in packages ready to take out and bake for meals. I also mixed up the dry ingredients for my cornbread so that when I want to make cornbread all I have to do now is add the wet ingredients. I have really been working on simplicity since our move, and while I crave even more, I am trying to cook from scratch and buy as little processed food as I can. This of course takes more time in the kitchen, so I figure if I prep these mixes I will have the convenience in the evening of not having to measure all my ingredients out. I would love to grow a garden this summer, and I found out last week that potatoes grow really well here. Now I am on a hunt to find out what other foods grow well here. I read that root vegetables do well in colder weather, and broccoli does well in colder weather, since we only hit 50's in the summer, or summers would be considered colder I guess. So any advise would be truly appreciated.

On another note, We seriously need to cute down on our use of paper towels in this house. It is a waste of resources and of money, so I was blessed by a friend with tons of cotton yarn, perfect for dish clothes, and I have gotten busy. This weekend I finished one and am halfway done with a second dish cloth. I am even considering making some napkins and switching to cloth for that as well.

Last note for tonight.... I came home to a surprise message on my answering machine for the local school principal. I had talked to her several weeks ago about possibly having A tested while the testers were in town this month, but was told that she would have to check as A is not in the school system, I never heard back and assumed it was a no go, which was fine. But tonight I had a message saying she wanted to follow up and schedule a time for testing. I am calling her in the morning.

That's it for tonight. I am off to bed. Night all. Pics to come this week.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

A fun week

We had a pretty good week this week. The weather has been up and down, up and down. It was rainy and windy, then snowy, blizzard like condition, and right after that the temps warmed up, rain started, and overnight all the snow was gone. Today we even had some sun, no wind, and great going out and play weather.

We had fun playing in the snow while it was here though.

And we even got out in the blowing wind and snow to build that snowman A has been itching to build. None of our snow has of late been the sticky kind that is great for packing, but once the weather warmed up it was sticky and perfect! Just look at this guy!

Unfortunately our snow man had melted completely away less than 12 hours later.
A got out the paints this week, and did this painting of Pushki
and the reaction that occurs when it comes in contact with skin and sunlight. Huge blisters! LOL.

We played Dino Math Tracks several times this week. Man she begs for this game. And she is reading thousand numbers and doing place value so well now.

Thursday night was our pottery class. It was so much fun. I think we both had a blast. We have this once a month through May.

After playing with the clay for awhile, the kids had a chance to make anything they wanted which would later be fired. A decided to make a house. She did a pretty good job. Next glass she said she is going to make the roof and some people.
Today I spent the day baking and cleaning up. Dh is sick again, so much sickness is going around here right now. I am just trying to keep A and I well. Hope everyone has a great weekend.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Our week, storms, rainbows, and an awful migraine

What a week. Last week was a busy one, and a hard one on me, as I suffered from migraines for the most of the week. I had one good day on Wed where it stayed away, but Thursday it hit with a vengeance and sent me to bed. Nothing I took helped and I went through all my medicines to no avail. When I finally was able to sleep through the pain, I awoke on Friday and it was GONE! No headache since, knock on wood.
So needless to say I didn't take many pics this week, but I did get a few, especially from our beautiful Wed outside....but first things first....

Tuesday we had an awful storm, wind 75+, rain, sleet. It was just plain NASTY! Seriously, I did not want to get out, unfortunately I had a doctors appointment, so I had to brave it. The rest of the day though, A and I hung out inside. I snapped these pics of the letter she wrote me since I couldn't save it on the dry erase board.

She has been writing for so long now, but she has just never had an interest in writing her words with lowercase letters until the last few weeks. Now she is doing great. When she makes up her mind, there is no stopping her.

I always have a hard time getting pictures where she looks at the camera, so I tried the smile shutter on the camera and was able to get a few. A has issues with making eye contact while talking, playing, anything actually, and when I asked her about this, since it had become an issue, she told me "it feels not comfy inside. I feel anxious and uncomfortable." So I have stopped pressing it, but have explained why eye contact is so important to many people, and we are working on ways that she can show she is listening. Anyway, I got a few good pics of her in the beautiful dress that my cousin got her for Christmas.

On Wed, we were had just finished math and we looked out the window and saw this amazing cloud formation. It had turned out to be a glorious day, especially after the stormy Tuesday, so we spent the whole rest of the day outside, exploring the tundra, WWII remains, and playing at the park.

She found a feather from a Bald Eagle, that she was quite excited about.

A trench from WWII....filled with water from the storm the night before. I love walking the tundra with her. She loves to talk about history and the war here....and it has sparked her interest into why there are wars, why there has been 2 world wars, etc. Remnants of a building from WWII

WOW! That's a long way down.

"Hey Eagle Buddy, I found your feather!" LOL Isn't he amazing? I love living here!

A wanted to drive out to Summers Bay and walk by the water and collect shells. I snapped some pics on the way out.

So, since we couldn't get to Summers Bay, we headed to the park!

As we came around a curve on our way home from the park, this beautiful sight came into view. I had to pull over and snap some pics. This is why I ALWAYS carry my camera with me!

Then I wondered if I could make it up the hill and snap a pic with it behind the church before it dissipated as I knew the rain has ended and it would soon be gone. I barely got 3 pics before it disappeared.... but this was a great shot!

Thursday A had a doctors appointment for her acid reflux, and was weighed and 3 years 10 months, she is 32lbs and 37.5 inches tall. But the most interesting part of her appointment, we found out that she has a bifid uvula. You know the little hangy thing at the back of your throat that hangs down in a U shape, well....A's is shaped like a W. Apparently it only occurs in 2 percent of the population. It is very interesting looking LOL.
Anyway, on Saturday A pulled out her movable alphabet that she hasn't had out since we moved and she started writing a story. She only needed help spelling two words... cousin and carrot. She used the dot from the J as a comma and asked me to cut out some commas for her to use next time. I was impressed with the spelling of the words...especially 'radishes' and the fact that she new she needed to add es, and not just s. She is spelling at a mid 2nd grade level, and LOVES to spell. Honestly she spells her answers to everything the air with her finger. She loves for us to call out words for her to spell, and she told us this weekend that she wants to be in a spelling bee. "A real spelling bee, not one here at home." Scripps her we come in a few years??? LOL
On another note, DH FINALLY cut his hair..... he has let it grow since we moved here, and A told him he looked like a werewolf. Unfortunately, instead of cutting cutting it, he went and buzzed it himself. Sigh. Oh well, pics to follow shortly. Night all!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Smells Like Fish

Smells like fish, the stores are bare, there is no milk, bread, or juice on the island, and there are about 5,000 more people milling can only mean one season has started. 10 full flights a day in bringing in captains, crews, and processors. Pollock season and Opelio Crab, so the Deadliest Catch crews are back. In fact when we picked up Dh from the airport, several crew members were on his plane, and the captain of the Northwestern had just arrived and they were filming him talking to one of the late Captain Phil's sons. The processing plants are going at full steam, so a smell of fish hangs in the air now. You get used to it, its the smell of money to the town, so it is a good thing. The clinic is busy, DH is busy, and A and I are trying to take advantage of the nice days when we have them. DH is feeling better, and he spent the whole day Saturdat with us even though he really needed to head into the office. So today he headed in for a couple of hours.

But Saturday was nice. Mid 30's with no wind (well, Dutch Harbor no wind, which means blowing about 10-15mph). There is a mountain behind our house....we live way up, then the mountain rises up behind us. We decided to go hiking in the morning. We ALMOST made it to the top of the ridge. We were about 30 feet from the top I would guess. The rest of the way was an almost vertical assent covered in ice, so we didn't risk it with A. Took us about an hour or so to get up there, but the views were amazing. Going to try to get to the summit this summer. We slid most of the way down on our bottoms which had to be A's favorite part. Just a wonderful day.

Dad and A headed up the path behind the house.
Unalaska Lake with the Bering Sea in the background. This is the view from right up from our house.What's that I see? Fox prints!