Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Fast Thumbs

I have really fast thumbs. You know, for texting... but sometimes having fast thumbs is NOT a good thing.

Especially when you have Autocorrect on your phone.

Then having fast thumbs is NOT good...because your dumb little iPhone doesn't keep up with your fast thumbs and it just corrects things if it wants too when it misses letters...

And then you have to deal with people laughing at you afterwards... Or questioning your meat preference.

eating babies
I swear he doesn't really like the taste of babies...


rhubarb
I mean, I like Rhubarb...but maybe not that much.


anal 1
No comment...


bacteria and crazy
How about some Bacteria and Crazy for breakfast? (Actually I know some people who probably eat/are that for breakfast!!!)


anal again
Apparently I anal him a lot.


Monday, August 29, 2011

Big time in the City

Twelve bucks for a two minute ride!? What fun the State Fair is this week. Actually I'm being sarcastic, cause its NOT fun on the pocketbook, or bank account. It's NOT fun...especially when it's jam packed with people who work and kids who have to go to school, like this weekend.

Allee and Kaisa

Oh well. $200 for a few thrill rides is OK once a year. I AM trying to cut corners as much as possible though. I painted the little girls faces so we didn't have to 1. wait in line, or 2. pay $15 each for something I could do myself. We have been taking our own water, and snacks too. We are at the fair mostly to work, so we get a $9 meal ticket each day and that is enough to sustain us until we get to McDonalds afterwards!

Swimming

One good thing: We are staying in a hotel in Anchorage, and it has a pool. My kids will swim for three hour blocks of time...which they did the first day we were here. (Yay for free pools!)

The traffic though, OY! Luckily I just taught myself how to go through Wasilla, or on the Old Glenn and now it takes us just an hour to get back instead of the THREE HOURS it took us to get there yesterday. CRAZINESS. At least we got to see Bri and Sarah...she was her same feisty self, and Kaisa had a great time holding her hand and keeping up!

Brianna

Hopefully after work today though, the roads won't be so packed (thanks for being MONDAY!) and we can get in and do what we need to do...

Which is skin sewing demonstrations. :) We are in the "Alaska Native Raven's People" building showing you all how EASY it is to make a pair of mittens, or an Eskimo yo-yo, or a pair of baby mukluks (today!). Come visit and I'll give you a little skin sewing kit to take home and practice with...then one day, you'll be making your kids parka's and hats and mittens and mukluks, like me!

Photobucket

OH YEAH... I have to say that all the people coming up to me saying, "HI MAIJA!!! ... HI Finnskimo! ... Hi!!! I wanted to come meet you in person! I read your blog..." has been quite fun! At first I was a little scared and nervous, but after like 15 people in the last couple days it's a blast now! So, SHOUT out to those of you who said HI! And especially to the lady from the Nome area who was really happy and said she salivates when I post about Ugruk and Caribou and Fish and that she enjoys reading about how she grew up too! (HI!)

Kaisa

Friday, August 26, 2011

Zucchini Muffins

Yum.

Thank you Full Circle Farm for sending Zucchini in my box!

We are all enjoying the MUFFINS!


Zucchini

Really Good Zucchini Muffins

3 C Grated Zucchini
1/2 C (one stick) melted Butter
2 TBS Oil
1 1/4 C Sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp Vanilla extract
2 tsp Baking Soda
1/4 tsp Salt
1 TBS Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Nutmeg
3 C Flour
*add-ins
1 C Chopped nuts (walnuts are awesome)
1 C Raisins (or CRAISINS, which are better!)
Raw Sugar for the top

*Preheat oven to 350.
Combine Sugar, eggs and vanilla. Stir in zucchini, butter and oil. Mix well. Sprinkle in Baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg over the mixture and stir. Add flour and mix until just combined. Add Craisins and walnuts, stir to combine.

Spray your muffin tin with pam (or whatever generic variety). Scoop mixture into muffin cups. Sprinkle tops with Raw Sugar.

Bake until golden brown, for about 25-30 minutes.

Makes approximately 18 muffins.


Thursday, August 25, 2011

Subsisting

The fall time season in Northwest Alaska is our busiest season yet. I always laugh when people say things like, "I'm too busy," when asked to volunteer for simple tasks. Obviously they haven't met me, or read my facebook posts. Busy?! Psh. Whatev.

I leave the B-U-E for the big city tomorrow and will miss the best salmon fishing time yet. So, this week has been pretty much the same for me every day. Get up, Shower, Kids to school, Work, Bake at lunchtime, Get off work, Pull Net, Cut Fish, Clean Net, Clean Fish, Vac Seal Fish, Freeze Fish, Wash fish clothes, Go to bed.

salmon

I have a specific formula that I use for Subsistence. I want to eat Shiifish twice a week for 52 weeks, I want to eat Salmon twice a week for 52 weeks, I want to eat Caribou/Moose twice a week for 52 weeks, then I have to put away 104 vac sealed bags of each.

The Shiifish was done during April/May, and the Salmon is done now. (I don't like to eat Camo Fish, you know...the ones with the nasty stripes down the sides of spawned out fish...) And the caribou/moose is done next month.

So, don't tell me you're busy, cause my husband is out of town for the months of August and September so I am the mom, dad, baker, cleaner, cook, good cop, bad cop, employee, fisherman, fish cleaner, fish sealer, dog caretaker, etc. In addition to Zumba, Healthy Food Class, Church, and Garage Sales...of course!

At least I don't have to do laundry. Man, I'm gonna savor the 10 day BREAK in the big city!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

It's time...

I feel like I've been super lazy lately. Seriously. On Facebook it shows you posts from 2010, and all mine are like, "Oh Berries, here I come..." "Berries, you are MINE!" And this year, I have YET to go and pick berries.

berry pickers

I think my subconscious is on strike thanks to my uncle who told my husband and I, "YOU'RE TOO WHITE to be at MY CAMP..." even though its all of our land. Maybe he forgot that his sister is my mother, which makes me AT LEAST half native. Maybe he didn't graduate and doesn't understand blood quantum fractions.

Maybe he's just stupid. And I don't want to see him so I don't go to camp.

Maybe I'm overreacting. Maybe not.

pickers int he bushes

At any rate, it's Berry Time here. Last year I put away 37 GALLONS of berries. Handpicked...from four inches above the ground, in the tundra.

This year. Nothing.

Blackfish2

Oh well. My daughter and my mom can do it for me. Or wait, I wonder if you have to be NATIVE to pick berries here too....


Monday, August 22, 2011

Let's get Physical!

I wanna get Physicaaaaaallll, let me see your body rock!!!

My 8 year old knows that song. She sang it the entire time she had her sports physical done. It was awesome.

physical3

She doesn't know what the song is about, as far as she's concerned, it's about sports physicals.

Good news...both kids checked out A-OK to play all sports. Kaisa is ready to start Cross Country Running this week and Koy has already been doing it for a few weeks. We run actual "cross country" on tundra trails full of mud up here. The high school students have to buy spikes to use when they travel, because they don't know how to run on grass!

physical2

Kaisa is officially 59 inches tall. She's 8 years old. Has 20/30 vision! That's what I got from the physical. Worse than her though is her brother with 20/50 and 20/40 vision...WITH contacts on. Hopefully he can actually see when both his eyes are open though. He's 69 inches tall.

physical1

Both of them start school today. Finally. The summer just drags on up here so school is a much anticipated endeavor. Kaisa started the 3rd grade and Koy the 10th. Max and Maddie have been in school for a week in Palmer in 7th grade.

Maybe it's time to have another baby...cause I'm gonna be lonely in a few years! hahaha.

Friday, August 19, 2011

SURVIVOR!

Journey

So my sister and I survived. We made it from Fort Hood, Texas to Anchorage, Alaska and it only took us six days! (I know, it could have been faster, but we wanted to hang out with people we knew on the way!)

Dallas
Dallas, TX

Texas
Don't have many of these signs where we're from!

It was an absolute blast. A beautiful trip. A trip filled with new adventure, and I would do it again...if I had the time off and the gas money!

Colorado
Denver with Lucy!

Wyoming

Before we left, I was WORRIED. I mean worried like no other. I probably even gave myself an ulcer. I kept Googling, "Safest way through Canada..." and I would always come up with these stories on TWO WOMEN FOUND DEAD off the side of the road...etc. I was freaked out.

LOVE wyoming

bugs
Hitch Hikers in Montana.

Apparently I was worried over nothing. I seriously thought we were going to get beat up in Canada. But the Canadians were WAYYYYY nicer than the Americans! Everywhere we went.

Montana
Elsa and I "went out" in Montana...to Applebees. Call us wild!

stone sheep

Shoot, once, in a gas station at one am, in the middle of nowhere in Canada, a drug deal was going down behind me. I could hear them talking about the cost. I get a tap on the shoulder, and think to myself, "I'm going to get killed now. He's going to kill me and take my money. I hope Elsa is not sleeping..." And he says to me, "Excuse me Ma'am, do you happen to have five bucks I can borrow? I am short a little for my transaction..." I say, "Uhm, I have a credit card, that's all..." And he replies, "Oh, OK, sorry to bother you..." and goes about his DRUG DEAL...

I love Canada.

protection
Protection!!!

Elsa

And geez America...what's with all the hay bales?! I mean seriously. Hay, Hay, Hay, Hay, Hay, Hay.... Wheat. Hay, Hay, Hay, Hay, Hay....Cows. Hay, Hay, Hay, ...you get the idea. It would have been nice to see something other than hay. And cows.

Buffalo

eat moose

We were lucky enough to need a hotel in Fort Nelson, BC...so we stopped at a Super 8 (hello pool SLIDE!) and while we were waiting for the elevator, it opened up. "MAIJA!!!" I hear...and it's a family from our town in Kotzebue, ALASKA, staying at the exact same hotel, at the exact same time, on the exact same day!!! Crazy. Small World, literally! So, Elsa and I just followed them the rest of the way. We even stopped at the "Sign Forest" and at a Hot Springs...where a bear walked 15 feet in front of us crossing the boardwalks. Nice.

British Columbia

BC cabins
Next time, we are staying here...

The only snafuu we hit on the trail was when I closed my eyes for a split second and hit the butt of an Elk at 5 am. We stopped after that and slept with the truckers at a rest stop. Other than that, it was a great trip. We pretty much stayed in motels/hotels along the way. Super 8 is pretty nice. I wasn't worried about the low "stars" on the ratings because seriously, we used to sleep on caribou skins on a plywood floor. Anything was better than the car seats we were in 10 hours a day. And all the hotels (EXCEPT THE HOWARD JOHNSON INN, DON'T EVER STAY THERE!!!) were really nice and clean. And VERY VERY VERY helpful.

Finland

border

We went from 118 degrees in Texas to 45 degrees in Kotzebue. Then since we have been home it's been about 70 degrees out, and beautiful.

Chickaloon

Back to Fishing, and Berry Picking and Hunting Caribou. :) I sure missed AK.



Saturday, August 6, 2011

Hi from the road!

HELLO!

Long road trip. We are in Great Falls, Montana, about to leave America for the last time. Going on to Canada today,then Alaska (which is technically not "America" just ask the shipping companies!).


We have had a blast on our trip so far. Visited old friends in Colorado and Wyoming. We've seen so many farms I'm officially done with farms. My favorite thing though is driving through little towns that remind me of Radiator Springs from Cars. Oh and seeing the cows. haha.

I can't post photos, but we have quite the collection on Facebook so if you want to see them, check there!

OK, off to Canada today! See you on the flip side.