Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Our 1/2 Hour Visitor

Just before Halloween the weather had turned really cold and it had rained. A was on her way home from school when she spotted this little fella running around our condo parking lot. He was cold, wet and scared. A brought him inside and we made him warm. Once we had him warm and dry he hung out with us in the living room.
He made no noise so we thought it would be okey to let him stay a while longer until he saw a dog being walked on the path behind us. It was then that we found out he could bark... Rather loudly in fact! You wouldn't think a dog that small would have such a big bark but he did!! And A and I looked at each other and knew that our visit was at and end. We live in a no pets allowed building. Being the Mom of a rebel means that some times you end up as the partner in crime. A bundled him up and took him back out side. And it is there we parted ways with our 1/2 hour visitor. We haven't seen him since.

Saturday, 24 October 2009

Academic Letter

This is A receiving her Academic Letter from Principal Pondolfino. She was one of 319 students that received either a letter or a gold star or silver star pin. Before the ceremony the Service High School Concert Orchestra entertained us with wonderful music. After the ceremony we were treated to refreshments.
This is A's Academic Letter. A lot of hard work went into this letter. So many hours of homework are also wrapped up in this letter. We are so proud of you A. :)

Saturday, 26 September 2009

Two More Mouths to Feed

That's right! We have two more mouths to feed. A is such a rebel. She sees the words NO PETS on the front door as a suggestion. I really thinks she looks upon those two words as a challenge. So far our rebel had broken the rules with Goldfish. K took her to"Pet Zoo". That is the local pet store. A was looking for more goldfish or so I thought. when she came in the door the first thing she said to me was "Don't get scared". I was thinking tarantula, or worse... snake. I had not even seen what she brought home yet and I was already thinking "I'm in trouble!!!"

K went about the business of helping her set up the small fish tank that she has. Once that was ready she pulled out her purchase. Two small mice. Well to say I was relieved is an understatement. It's been about eight years since she had her rats. They were the cutest things you have ever seen. They were Russian Blue rats. She named them Snoopy and Woodstock. And they were her buddies.

While they settled in she thought of names for them. The names fit them. See the brownish tan one? His name is Wheeler. This is a good name for him because well.... He is addicted to his wheel. He gets in that thing and runs like mad. I wonder if he knows he's not going anyplace?? Then there is Smalls. He is the two toned white and grayish brown little guy. He likes the wheel as well. The only problem I can see for Smalls is when he gets on the wheel with Wheeler. He either has to keep up with Wheeler or if is forced to hang on and ride the wheel while hanging upside down. Poor Guy!!

Friday, 25 September 2009

Termination Dust

Termination Dust has got to be an Alaskan term. At least I think it is. I have never heard that term before. Not until this week that is. All the weather people were talking about it at the beginning of the week. My first thought was those pesky volcanoes!!! Believe me it has nothing to do with the volcanoes. I found out what it means. Termination dust means the first dusting of snow on the mountains that surround us or maybe it is in the mountains in general. It also means that summer has been terminated or ended and winter will soon be here. There is that wicked,wacky Alaskan sense of humor again!

See the picture with the huge diamond center sign in it? It's kinda hard to miss isn't it! Well look to the right. See the mountain with the flat top? Well that is Flat Top. That is the mountain that K and A can't wait to climb during the last weeks of summer. They climbed it about two weeks ago. Next week I will show you there pictures from two weeks ago. They brought me home a present. half a water bottle of wild Alaskan blueberries. I froze them and I am going to surprise them with blueberry pancakes tomorrow. Shhhhh.... Don't tell!!!

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

Alaska State Fair

During our visit to the fair were were able to catch the Cavallo Equestrian Arts show. I thought it was really good. A's favorite part of the show was the horses.... no big surprise there!!!! She is horse crazy. :) I gave her my camera to shoot all the pictures she wanted. The first 5 or so pictures had people in them. But its the last 20 or so that caught my attention. You see instead of just taking pictures with everyone and everything she took pictures of just the horses. You will see as I post more pictures of the show.
At the back of the fair where they have the rides they have a miniature golf course.

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

More Views of Seward

While we were in Seward for the day we happened to wander into the National Park Service. This is a real neat building. The building houses a few exhibits, a short film or slide show depending on when you arrive. And a very nice gentleman that stands behind the counter who will gladly answer any question you might have.

I found something that I knew I had to take a picture of. The Kenai Fjords National Park quilt. Isn't it gorgeous? I can tell you right now that I look at this and wonder how who ever made this did it... My Mom on the other hand is probably right now piecing it together in her head. She is very talented like that.
Behind A and K is Resurrection Bay. We haven't seen any whales here but we are told that they are out there... Somewhere! We saw a humpback whale on a cruise out of Valdez. And we haven't seen a whale since. We have decided that we want to do a Glacier Cruise sometime in the next couple of years.
Here is a picture of the harbor.

We haven't figured out which mountain is Marathon yet. But every 4th of July people gather from all over to run up Mt. Marathon to see who can be the first to reach the summit. In the Alaska Activities Guide this is billed as "America's second oldest footrace". The first time I saw this on the 10 o'clock news I thought these people were nuts. The wipe outs were unbelievable. Next time I am in Seward I will make it a point to ask where Mt. Marathon is. When I find out I will post pictures. Hmm... I am now curious as to what the "first oldest footrace" was!!!
This picture reminds me of the opening scene from Gilligan's Island.

Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Seward, Alaska

There are other photos I will show you of our day trip to Seward. And I will show them to you soon. But for now check out the impressive amount of salmon that a fisher woman caught. I took this photo over her shoulder. And take a look at the second row. See the middle salmon? That one was the fisher woman's entry in the Seward Salmon Derby.

A few minutes before I took this photo A and K saw an otter swimming around. The otter dove under the water and I was waiting for it to come back up. That's when we noticed the fish jumping out of the water.

Saturday, 15 August 2009

A Badge and a Book Blog

So did you notice it??? If you didn't notice it it's OK because I'm going to tell you about it anyway.... It's that awesome badge on the left.... I got it because I joined the Blogger Unite book club. I can already tell you that I know for a fact that I will be reading outside my comfort zone!!! And I am OK with that!!! :) This means that once a month I will be reading a book one of the members pick. :) For August we read The Time Travelers Wife by Audrey Niffenegger. After reading the book I am still on the fence as to if I am going to see the movie or not. :) September's read is Persuasion by Jane Austen. Bobbie who started the Blogger Unite book club was kind enough to let me pick. Thank You Bobbie. :)

Speaking of Bobbie... I would like to tell you about her blog. This is a book review blog. And it's run by my friend Bobbie Crawford-McCoy. It can be found at
It is a great way to research a book that you are thinking about reading. I have looked up many books using her reviews. She has book reviews and book give aways and interesting articles. she had an article on the Tudor's a few months ago that I found fascinating! Make sure you check out her art page. She is so talented and creative. I really enjoy her wonderful artwork. I am glad that she put her art on her blog. :)

Saturday, 1 August 2009

The Biggest Little City......

Well I finally did it..... But this time I did it right! A and I went to the Peppermill Casino. NO we didn't go to gamble we went to play in the arcade. You are probably asking yourself why. On Tuesdays and Wednesdays the Peppermill has half priced arcade games between the hours of 5-7 pm. So if you find yourself in Reno, Nevada on a Tuesday or a Wednesday it is well worth it. But that's not what I did right.. What I finally did right is hand A the camera before coming to the RENO arch. Every picture I have taken of this arch has never turned out. So I decided that the best thing was to drive really slow and have A take the picture. It worked !!! I am starting to think that my camera is union. It only works when it wants to. It has a strict no working after dark policy. And the only way to keep it happy is to give it rechargeable batteries. A even managed to catch the afternoon thunder storm.

Thursday, 16 July 2009

Cold Springs Campfire

This is a picture I took of the hills to the north of us. I went for a walk with A and I thought this scene looked absolutely beautiful. What a contrast from Alaska.

This is what the first picture looked like earlier this evening. This picture was taken by k. I would have taken it but my camera has a strict policy of not working in the evening...

This and the one above it were also taken on our walk. They are still building homes. In the newer phases we noticed that there are for sale signs and some homes that have not been sold. Another sign of the times.

Cold Springs Fire

Here are the clearest pictures we could get. These were taken just before sundown. We will post a night time shot if we can get one. I have no idea how close it is to us.

Good Bye...

I would not have posted this if not for a conversation that I had with my Mother-In-law. In the course of the conversation I realized that his music was a part of my life.

While we were at the Anime Convention next door at the Los Angeles Convention Center a choice was made to hold Michael Jackson's Memorial at the Staples Center. The street outside Staples was blocked off and so were different areas in front of Staples.

Fans waited in line in the hot sun to sign the huge card that was put up. Michael's music was played. Everyone mourned together.
If I could put together a soundtrack of my life a lot of Michaels songs would be on it. It is hard to believe that he is gone. Good Bye and R.I.P Michael. You are a one of a kind. Thanks for the wonderful music.

Views of Downtown Los Angeles

These are the views of downtown that we had while we walked to the Anime Expo. The first one on the left was taken from the Macy's parking garage.

When you are standing at the bottom of a big building you feel so small.

Another group of buildings from our walk. I enjoy the fact that no one building looks like another.

I added this picture because I liked the message.
Yes I know ...Its a parking garage but sometimes you can be inspired by a message in the oddest of places. :) Well.. It inspired me for 10 minutes... And then I left the parking garage and promptly got lost!!!!

This is a random alley. This is one of many that A and I drove by. Getting lost one time is understandable in a big city like Los Angeles. I got lost on the way to Downtown and on the way back. Four days of that gets on your nerves. Well at least I was consistant! I should have known that was how the trip would go when I got lost on the way to my In-Laws home. A and I ended up in El Segundo. Lovely town but not where I needed to be.
Trust me when I tell you that A and I have seen the parts of Los Angeles and the surrounding areas that they don't have on any tourist map that I know of.

Saturday, 11 July 2009

More Anime Expo Pictures

These are just some of the pictures that I took while at the Anime Convention. This by far was the best pose of the day. What was so awesome about the convention was that everyone that dressed up would pose for you if you asked them to. I thanked everyone that posed while I took their picture. Being my first comvention I quickly learned that anything goes. Not only where people dressed as anime characters they also had some people that dressed as non anime characters. I took this picture because we are a family of Star Wars fanatics. We also have some Trekies thrown in for good measure.

I took this picture on the last day of the convention. Everytime I tried to take a picture of Yoshi he would turn away from me. So I gave up and just took a profile picture.

Tuesday, 7 July 2009

Anime Expo 2009

This is where the Anime Expo for 2009 was held. This is the Los Angeles Convention Center. It is behind the Staples Center. A and I spent 4 very warm and sunny days in downtown Los Angeles.

This is a picture I took of a poster of the Anime movie Totoro. This is one of our favorites.
This was my first Anime convention. It was a lot of fun. Lots of people dressed up as random Anime characters. I took lots of pictures and will show them over the next day or two. I want to take a moment to say a special Thank You to Mark and Andrea and Tallulah Mae for making our stay so enjoyable. Your home is Gorgeous!!!

Thursday, 18 June 2009

One Of Our family Traditions

.... This is one of our family traditions. When the snow melts my family looks to the mountains. Well toward one mountain. They wait till all the snow has melted off and for the perfect day when the weather is clear or clear enough. Then they head out. They grab their bear bells and their water bottles and head for their once a year hike up Flat Top!

This is the view of downtown Anchorage. Awesome isn't it? On really clear days you can even see Mount McKinley. I will post those at a later date.

This is Flat Top. It is part of the Chugach Mountians.

Thursday, 28 May 2009

Around Town

On the way home from an outing we all noticed this rainbow. Remember how I told you that I learned the lesson of always remembering to bring my camera? I was glad I had it with me. I passed it up to A and asked her if she wouldn't mind taking a few shots for me. This was one of the many that she took.

This is the corner of C Street and Dimond. Off and on during the day we had clouds pass by that threatened to rain on us. They held off until we drove home.

The Chugach Mountains in the back ground do not have all the snow that this picture shows. See the Canadian Geese? These guys are all over Anchorage. They hang out at all the little ponds that were created by the melted snow. It is not unusual to see them by the roadside.

Besides we could have it much worse! See that second picture? The one with the snow on the ground! We could still have all that to deal with. But I for one am glad we don't. :)

Our next post will be about what has become a tradition in our family.

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

Soccer in Four

This is A playing in the Junior Varsity game. She is number 45/17 you will see why when you click on the picture. A had an assist on the only goal of the game. If you didn't click on the picture her shorts have her c-team number of 17 and the varsity coach gave her a jersey with a varsity shirt number 45.

The second picture as you can see was taken on an absolutely gorgeous day. You are looking at Eagle River High School in the background. The game going on in the picture is a varsity game. By the way this game had Alaska's Soccer Player of the Year playing for Chugiak high school. I can't point her out but my all knowing sports nut of a husband shared that tidbit with me...

This third picture is of the end of A's game at A.J. Dimond High school.

This fourth picture is of Nicholas Joseph Begich Middle School. Have you heard of Senator Mark Begich? (He won Ted Steven's seat) This school is named for his father. This is where most of A's games were played. Pretty spiffy for a middle school!

Wednesday, 13 May 2009

Always Carry Your Camera!

There is a lesson that I have learned since moving to Alaska. Maybe it is the same lesson you have learned as well. The lesson I learned here is simple. It is this... Always and I mean

Always carry your camera!

The top shot to me is amazing! How A got this shot I will never know... But for my story this is why I put the picture up. Make sure that when you have your camera with you you remember to charge your batteries. Or at least have fresh batteries handy. my batteries died and I had nowhere to charge them. She took this just after mine quit.

this is why it is important to have that camera handy at all times. If you find yourself in Homer, Alaska make sure you visit the Cosmic Kitchen.
Here I'll wait ...
go to http:// And while you are looking around the web site try to find this picture.
Now that you are back did you find it??? I bet you didn't. That's OK! I'll tell you where you can find it. Its on the wall opposite the sink in the woman's bathroom... You didn't see that one coming did you? And no I didn't look to see what the men's restroom had on their wall....

Did you check out the menu? This is an awesome resturaunt. The food was wonderful and the service was great. We really enjoyed this place. Just do me one favor... Don't everyone rush the woman's restroom at once to see if this really was taken in the woman's restroom.

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Alyeska... Part two

This is the tram my family was on. Four minutes and 2000 vertical feet later and they were taking in the views of the Turn again arm and the glaciers.

By the way there is a restaurant up there. Its called the 7 Glacier Restaurant. They are open for lunch and dinner.


This is where you go to catch the tram. This reminds me of the Sound of Music. We will be back here in a minute. But for now I have something else to show you....

Alyeska is located in Girdwood. Girdwood was originally called Glacier City. Because of the glaciers that rim the surrounding mountains. Girdwood began as a gold mining town in 1900 when a man by the name of James Girdwood hit pay dirt in Crow Creek.

The 1964 earthquake sunk the town into Turn again Arm. When the town was rebuilt they moved it 2 miles inland.

See this lake? This is the view out the back door. Well out the door and to the right.

The grand building in this picture is the backside of Hotel Alyeska. The front is impressive as well. But I was to busy playing tourist to break out my camera. Sorry! next time we go I will be sure to snap a picture so you will be able to see what I mean.
Remember when I told you to remember the first picture? Sure you do!!! I told you that was where you catch the tram. Well in my second post for today I am going to show you the tram. I stayed on the ground while my family went up there. Ok go ahead and call me chicken... I have vertigo and sometimes these tram rides get to me.. So on this day I was the ground crew.