Sunday, March 27, 2011


So I don't know why the formatting is messed up on my previous post, but it took me too long to get in there, and I don't want to lose anything by trying to fix it.

March Madness - Alaska Style

Hard to believe the month of March is almost gone. This is my version of March Madness. A recap of what's been going on. Spring has sprung here. Understand that Spring is identified here by the number of days that are now above freezing and with sunshine, thus causing breakup (otherwise known as thawing) to start. It is a slushy mess. It is probably another four to six weeks before we have any green. Although, I did see a picture of a crocus in the newspaper this week, which is a harbinger of spring. The first crocus sightings in Oklahoma typically happen in late January to early February. My friends and coworkers tell my I have survived my first winter so I am no longer a chechako (Alaskan for greenhorn). I guess I'm officially a Sourdough. Although, as you know, I'll always be an Okie at heart. The first two pictures are outside my condo. And really this is pretty good to what it has been. In some areas there are deep ruts, may six to eight inches deep. Makes me glad that I didn't bring my Mustang up here. My dirty car. But I can't see spending five dollars for a car wash when I know as soon as I drive it out of the bay, it will look like this again. The fortunate thing is that they don't use salt on the roads here, so you don't have to worry about the damage saltwater can do to your vehicle. I have officially abandoned my winter boots and heavy parka. Also, take note. If your friend sends you a text message and asks if you want to go for a walk, make sure you ask enough questions. Apparently, going for a walk in Alaska has a different meaning. The picture shows where we went walking. Up the side of this mountain on McHugh Creek Trail, which is still covered in ice and snow. I would like to share more pictures with you; however, I had to focus all my energy on staying upright. I ended up sliding down the trail on my backside a couple of times, all the while my 20 something friend and her husband are saying, "Are you alright" Here let me help you." Like I'm old or something. Funny, I remember doing the same thing to my Grandma, and I couldn't understand why she got so cranky with me. Time does have a way of changing your perspective. As far as the earthquake in Japan, we had no impact here from it; however, I had fallen asleep on the couch with the TV on and was awakened in the middle of the night by the Emergency Broadcast System issuing a tsunami warning for the southern coastline of the state. A little unnerving. Glad I had seen on the news about the earthquake in Japan so I knew the cause. Anchorage sits so far up the inlet, we are at little risk of being impacted by a tsunami. We are, however, high risk for earthquake activity. I did some research and the state of Alaska averages over 14,000 earthquakes a year. You can click on the earthquake monitoring link below if you are interested. The majority of them are so small and so deep that they are never felt. But, if you drive to the areas that were devestated by the 1964 quake here and you watch the damage in Japan and other locations from recent earthquakes, it does bring home the point that you need to be as prepared as possible. So I am in the process of finishing up my disaster kit. My winter pasttime has been going to hockey games. In Oklahoma, we have football. In Alaska we have hockey. There is a ECHL team, the Alaska Aces as well as a college team, the University of Alaska Anchorage (UAA) Seawolves. I have a hockey friend who has season tickets for both. Both teams play at the same location, The Sullivan Arena, and they alternate weekends. Thus there is hockey every weekend. I had only been to one hockey game in my entire life prior to moving here, but I actually find I am liking it. I am still trying to learn all of the rules. It has taken me the better part of the season just to learn how to keep track of the puck. We've had two come over the glass at us. The University of Alaska Anchorage (UAA) season is over. But, the Aces have clenched the Western Conference, a first week bye for the playoffs as well as home ice advantage. The UAA Seawolf Mascot The Alaska Aces Logo and Team Picture I just finished a knitting class where I learned how to knit socks. I have one completed sock. The challenge now is to see if I can knit a matching one. I also finished a quilting class. This is actually the second go around for this particular class. The technique was new to me and bit of a challenge, but after round two, I am feeling better about it. Still don't have a finished quilt, but have more confidence in my ability to get it finished. Here is a picture of the pattern, two of my finished blocks and a block that is in progress. Five of the blocks are hand appliqued and five are pieced. Once I get the applique done, I think the pieced blocks will go by quickly.

I'm probably done with creative classes until next fall. Summer is on the way, which means more outdoor activity as well as lots of anticipated company. And goodness knows I have plenty of projects to satisfy my creative outlet without taking more classes.


Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Winter Blues Cure

Yesterday, I had a key in my mailbox indicating I had received a package. Unfortunately, the package mailbox was frozen shut.

Today, thanks to a friend who was stronger than the frozen lock, I was able to get the package mailbox open. And what did I find? A package from my cousin Brenda. Notice the cheery flowers.

And when I opened the package......

A care package from my Aunt and Cousins.

And they know me well.

Look at all the wonderful things they sent to me.

A bookmark with a quilt design and a pair of
embroidery scissors. Some of my favorite past
times. Reading, quilting, and needlework.

Nail polish, which I won't buy for myself. And
Bath and Body Works goodies. I miss Bath and
Body Works.

Things that smell good. And the candle was
made in Colorado.

Note pads. I'm always looking for a piece of
paper to make myself a note or list. A side effect
of getting older. Can't remember a thing if I
don't write it down.

Mints and Gum. Never know when you might
need fresh breath.

A fun pair of socks and towels. Hidden under
the note it says Spring and there are flowers
on the front towel.

And cookbooks for two of my favorite things.
I can't think of anything better to help cure
the Winter Blues.