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Sunday, August 30, 2009

You can take the girl out of the village...

This is my friend Danielle. She was the best woman at my wedding. (Matron of honor? I don't know how that stuff goes, shoot, we wore mukluks and showered a half hour prior to getting hitched!)


Her and I are buds.

For a long time!

She left me a few years ago, for bigger and better things. She ran away to the big city. Anchorage. I am sad.

I have lots of real good friends in Kotzebue, but I still miss my bud.


As you can see... no big house, high paying job, two car, one motorcycle, three ATV, snowmachine owning family can take her away from her roots.

She still cuts her potatoes with an ulu.


You can take the girl out of the village...but you can't take the village out of the girl.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Hobbies on display...

Or Shall I say, Hubby's Hobbies on Display!?!

In order to cool down from a non-so-great job, my husband has taken to holing himself up in his shop/garage and making stuff.

all knives on display

I'm not a complainer...and I love the stuff he makes.

Recently, I (being the grandest grant-writer if ever there was) wrote a simple grant for him to purchase a bulk load of supplies from Finland. The blades themselves are expensive little suckers, as well as some wood, polycarbonate and brass.

small knives

He made a $1,300 order the other day in supplies alone.

I don't mind at all, because the knives that come out of that shop are breathtaking. He is just getting better and better every time.

Every single knife that he brings inside (because I am a MASTER Sheath maker) is my NEW favorite knife!

Seriously, every one!


If you're in the Kotzebue area, his knives are on display at the Sulainich Arts Center on third street. If you're not in can admire them online and contact him directly if you want your own!

Yesterday, he brought ONE knife over to Sulainich and within a half hour, it had sold and three other people asked about where they could find more.

new blue knife

I do have to admit, this one might be taking the cake on my favorite. It is made with stabilized dyed alder. The curls in it are a bright gold with a deep blue wood color. The photo really doesn't do justice to that knife.

So, he did what any other great husband on his day off would do. Made a garbage bin for our all consuming trash. Oh, no he didn't do that, he was SUPPOSED to do that. Nooooo, he made three more knives.

new large hunting knife

We also ran out of rivets, so had to improvise on the sheaths this time. Thank goodness for sinew and leather punches. I spent an HOUR trying to figure out how to make a sheath that was traditionally Scandinavian, where the stitches ran along the side of the knife, rather than above or below.

scandinavian knife

I succeeded though, without too much complaint!

As soon as the other supplies arrive...I'm sure we'll have more to post. As for now, I'll continue putting our garbage outside, where the seagulls and raven's can get into it...heck, maybe I'll just use MY knife and throw it at the birds!

As for the knife making skillz of my hubby. My daddy done taught him GOOD!

My first italian food...

I LOVE Italian Food.


And not only because they drink good RED wine with everything. And not because they use yummy cheese and pasta in everything. And not because they love meat, like I love meat.

Probably because I started making my own noodles when I was VERY young.

Very young.

Kaisa super enjoyed making her own linguine noodles as well.

reading the recipe

measure the flour

egg in a well

well in the flour

kaisa rolling out the dough

egg noodle dough

rolling the dough into a roll


easier this way


noodles done with cheese

She told Dean and all our guests last night ALL about how to make noodles, she now has the recipe memorized. (And will gladly relay that information to anyone who asks.)

linguine with turkey meatballs

Since I'm not one to shy away from the spotlight, and I had in fact, made the turkey meatballs out of whatever we had in the cupboards. Which included an egg, steel cut oats, garlic powder and dry bread...and I was feeling quite proud of how well they tasted...

I said to my family..."Oh yeah, you guys know how to make turkey balls?"

To which Koy did not hesitate to respond,

"You get a turkey and neuter it."

That's my boy...

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Everything in Alaska is Bigger!

Have you ever heard Texan's say that they live in the biggest state? That, "everything's bigger in Texas!"

Big Boy

Do they not understand that Alaska is, in fact, a part of the union...that there are FIFTY states, not forty eight! I mean, come ON!

Heck...if we cut Alaska in HALF, Texas would become the 3rd largest state. We have one SIXTH the land of the entire United States. And guess what? Most EVERYTHING here is organic. Naturally!

Koy holding trout

We have bigger CABBAGE, bigger moose, bigger deer, bigger tides, bigger crabs and shrimp, and scallops. And yes, we DON'T FARM our seafood.

The deer are the size of moose and the moose hit semi's on the road and ruin them! Lastly...we have bigger FISH!


mom holding trout

For those of you who don't know what this is...its a TROUT. And it was caught in the ocean a quarter mile away from our house. And I googled states the AVERAGE trout weights about 10-15 lbs. This one weighs 37 lbs...and we had an even BIGGER one in the tote. :)

So, the next time you hear someone say that "everything's bigger in Texas!" Just remind them, that IF they were to VISIT Alaska...they would have left the state with the biggest EGO, for the state with the biggest landmass!

Trout spots

Put that on your horse and ride it!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Life and times of Muck and Squeaky...

Once there were ducklings named Squeaky and Muck,

All the kids had excitement anew...

Those little ducks were cute as can be, and belonged where the arctic winds blew.


They were good little ducks, who ate and drank and pooped.

If ever some ducks there was,

Soon enough, the children were tired of them though,

No more cute, no more quacks, no more fuzz.

grown up duck

So momma and daddy took Squeaky and Muck, outside to live in the breeze.

Who knew that they quacked suck a loud, loud quack?

Maybe they were upset because we have no shelter in trees.

killed duck
Upon sleeping so soundly momma was awakened to such noise,

Those ducks outside were all in a tizzy.

Are they girl ducks in a fit or what's going on?

Who knows, but I'm so tired that I'm dizzy.

duck feet
Who knows what happened, But all I can tell you,

is that they are no longer quacking their loud loud quack,

and taste damn good all smothered in barbecue.

bbq duck

Monday, August 24, 2009

My baby ran away...

...but ran right back again!

Saturday morning our house was filled with complaints and excitement. The sky had opened up and the rain poured buckets. Our tin roof left little to the imagination about just how hard it poured.

kaisa at start

And we had fifteen minutes to get ready and meet on cemetery hill.


Kaisa braved the elements and put on her running gear. She put on an extra pair of fleece pants, and a pair of squeaky rain pants over those. She wore a long sleeve t-shirt, under armour cold-T shirt, sweatshirt and matching squeaky raincoat over that.


As we made our way up the hill, her excitement turned to anguish, and she complained that it would be too hard. She didn't see anyone she knew, and simply, she wanted to just go home. "Momma, we could just go together..."


Once we were up there, the sky opened up and the sun shone down! Everyone out there knew it would be beautiful for the kids races...because, how could it not be!?


The kids lined up at the start/finish line for a grueling 1 mile race UP a hill, then back down a hill. REAL cross country running, no pavement, running through the tundra... well, not really, but it was a hard course for the 1-5th graders!


The coach talked to them all at once, making sure they remembered to start SLOW, pace yourselves, don't take off like a bat outta hell. Oh, I added that last part.

here she comes

When the order was given to "GO!" they took off like rockets out of an empty beer bottle on a redneck fourth of July. And thirty seven steps later, half of them were walking!


The older, faster kids showed up first, followed by the younger, and younger kids...then at the veeery comes Kaisa! Dancing her way down the hill. Running a few steps, walking a little more. Smiling the entire time.


She smiled her way through the finish line. It was beautiful!

running into the finish

Good job baby.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Ask and he will patient and it will come...if you wait, she will run!

Ask and he will build.

So, I've been saving up for some sort of storage/organization stuff to get my house organized. We decided to start with the smallest room, which is the entry way.

Up in the North, we have an Arctic Entry (kunnychuck) and an entry into our home. I went onto LLBean's site to get Kaisa an embroidered backpack that would last a couple of years, and found this:


I printed it out and showed my husband. Only a total of about $450 with shipping included. He laughed and said, "no...I'll just make one."

$130 worth of wood later. I got this:

deans locker


And I LOVE it!

Be patient and it will come.

So, our post office has been suffering from super low employee interest lately. The employees are not at work. There are some great reasons why...but whatever the reason, our mail is backed up at least three weeks. If anyone wants to send me something. Send it UPS! :)

The other day, we had a yellow slip in the box and my friend and I decided to brave the long line of people during the time they WERE open. We waited for an hour and twenty minutes.

During that kid cried and fell asleep, one kid picked his nose, one kid lied on the floor grumbling about waiting...and a couple of cute homeschooled girls learned the important lesson of time management.

We stood in line for an hour and twenty minutes. And what I got was beautiful. Well worth the wait!

under armour

Can you imagine waiting in line and getting a certified letter saying you are being sued!? Double Whammy!

If you wait, she will run!

go kaisa

Miss Kaisa has been practicing with the elementary cross country team this week and her first meet is tomorrow morning at eleven am! They will be running a one mile course up and down our bridges from cemetary hill.

running  in the gym

I watched for a bit, and wanted to snap some shots of the action they call Cross Country. I was pleasantly surprised at the enthusiasm of the kids during warm-ups and the group run.

walking with ty

Then I waited...and waited...and waited to see Kaisa.

first place runners

See, there are the fast kids.

middle kids

The mid level kids...

last place

And then there is my six year old. Holding up the end of the pack! Yay.


Good luck Elementary Runners!