Through the winter, I try to keep from wishing it were summer. After all, I LOVE winter here. The extremes are exciting and gives me something to write “home” about. Surviving in such a climate really makes one feel alive (except this winter when the heater in my car went out). Then there is the whole being a musher thing which kind of requires snow. I love winter as a time to snuggle down in my cozy home with my children, watching movies and baking. I love how the snow makes even the long, dark nights bright enough to easily see. The aurora is magnificently magical, mesmerizing. It is a time for hibernation and good friends and deep thought. But then summer comes. And really, it is so gorgeous and satisfying. The sun brightens my heart as it does our Earth. Currently sunrise is at 3:50 AM AKDT and sunset is 11:49 PM AKDT. It does not get dark now, but we do have a few hours of misty twilight. When it is light all the time, it is hard to keep to a normal routine, especially now with the kids out of school. Many nights we will be having dinner at 10:00 pm. It was really hot today. I finally put up a curtain over my living room window to keep out light at night so didn’t think to look out and see what the actual temperature was. We have one box fan. So I set it up in the bedroom to blow on us while we are sleeping and in the day with the front door and bedroom window open, it circulates the air through the cabin. But today I was really wishing for that little air conditioner I have somewhere in the storage unit. Last night Olivia was outside playing and pointed out a pink rainbow. It was awesome as was the rest of the sky. This was taken at 11:00 pm. We are having a lot of wildland fires already, even though it is not even fire season yet, and I think the smoke in the air contributed to this unique occurence. I love that it ends at my outhouse. Wish I would have noticed that last night, I would have set this shot up better lol.
We started our garden this week. Since we have to haul water, (and had to haul in the gardening soil) it is a small one. We have a couple of tomato plants, a hot pepper, a sweet pepper, and two kinds of squash. We planted green beans and will be planting onions, carrots, lettuce and radishes. Though the lettuce is going to go into a container instead of the garden.
In the winter I often work for my best friend Jan as a dog mushing tour guide. She has the kennel and shares her dogs with me. There are between 40-50 dogs. We have had some awesome adventures over the years. She keeps a handler to help her with the dogs. As happens occasionally, we were in between handlers. It was going to be a couple of weeks from the time the last one left until the new one got here so Jan and I split up the feeding and scooping. On days that she had lots of hours to work, I went out. On her days off, she took care of them. I don’t mind doing the work of being a musher since I also get to do the fun of being a musher. It’s 25 miles from my house to the kennel. Here are some pictures.
The Alaska Range overlooking Fairbanks. That big, tall, brown building is the Chief Peter John Tribal building and where I used to work. My new friend Shan wanted to see what it was like so came out and helped me feed and scoop one night. Here she is helping fill the food buckets. Jan provides a comfy yert for her handler to live in. So while there was not a handler living in it, I thought I would take some pictures. The skylight really lights up the whole place.
One of my goals of moving out of town was for my children to learn a bit more about how to interact with nature and themselves. We moved from a neighborhood full of children to play with and I do feel a bit bad about “depriving” them of those childhood friends. But really, once they hit adolescence, there weren’t any that I would think beneficial to my children. I’m not saying they were bad kids or would turn into bad teens, just not the type of people I want my children to turn into. Now too often, especially since school is out, I hear “I’m bored.” I was so proud of my 8 year old daughter who built this fort out of blue foam board that we had stacked behind the cabin. Now she calls it her Relaxing Room lol. Of course you may notice that she has run an extension cord out there with her radio and personal dvd player. She actually does spend time out there sitting in her princess chair so I think it is awesome! I think it’s hilarious that she put screen on the door and camouflaged it. Her brother helped her out.
So, that’s it for now. Hope you all are well and enjoying your summer too.