Sunday, September 11, 2011

July & August Wrap Up

Oak, September, Lisa, Ian, Wyatt (shirts made by September)
 The highlight of our July was of coarse the visit from my mom and dad July 11th-25th. They got in on a very late flight on Monday night and we stayed at the Comfort Inn over night in ajoining rooms. The following morning we all piled in the bus and they got to see Ken at work as we tagged along with him on his errands for the council. Then came the long bus ride home from Fairbanks to Eureka. We were dropped off and walked to the dog lot were we left the dogs and my car while we were in town. We picked up the dogs and headed a couple miles down the road to our newest home.

No, we haven't made it to our 20 acre parcel yet and have put those plans on hold for a while at least until next spring. For now we are camped off of the runway of Darrell and Donna Scott who have adopted our family. We could not have fallen in with better people than the Scott's. They have lived in this area almost 40 years and are well known for their good and generous natures. We get to help them out and learn new skills all at the same time not to mention just enjoying their company. Darrell has a million wonderful adventure stories and leaves you hanging on his every word. I'm fascinated with hearing about the world that he grew up in. It really is amazing all the living that he has done in his life. (I hope that made sense) :) Right there along side for the wild ride has been Donna she is truelly a rock. As much as Darrell and Ken remind me of eachother it makes me admire Donna and look up to her all the more as I'm sure there have been MANY a challenge over the years. Darrell and Ken are both good strong men that expect strength and stability in their partners. I just hope that I can show the same strength that Donna has and enjoy the same kind of long and happy marriage. Oh and let me not forget to mention her cooking AMAZING! The kids have named them Grandpa and Nonnie and beg to visit with them everyday. I've never been a huge fan of little dogs but even their little poodle Otis has grown on me. He is so sweet and smart with his soft curly hair I could sit and pet him all day wich I'm sure he would just hate. ;)

Ian & September at Tanana River Landing in Manley Hot Springs
Picnic at Walter Wood's Park in Manley Hot Springs
We had all our stuff moved over here before my mom and dad got here so we all stayed here. My folks got to stay in a trailer that was already here and we stayed in ours so everyone had their space and a bed. We started a morning ritual of coffee around a little fire pit like we were camping and ait most of our meals at the outside table rain or shine. They didn't get much of a vacation as they spent most of their time helping us prep for the winter. We did take some time to go and vistit the 20 acres and for a drive up the Eureka/Rampart road and some trips into Manley Hot Springs. September and Ian also got to meet their pen pals from Manley and really enjoyed that. Ian had a birthday while they were here so we had thier pen pals and the Scott's over for cake.  A highlight of their trip for my dad was getting to ride Darrel's motorcycle. He also had a good time out scouting for Bear with Ken. Our only tourist type activity was visiting Iditarod Kennels run by Pam and Joee Redington. It was great, we got to watch a slide show on Joe Sr's trip up Mt. Mckinley and got a tour and talk about the dogs at the kennel. I recomend this tour to anyone who visits the Manley area. Pam and Joee are so full of information not only on mushing but on living a subsistance lifestyle in interior Alaska. They have a wonderful garden and fish, trap, hunt, make crafts, etc...etc.... the list goes on and on. They are a fountain of useful and interesting information.
Ian (right/red shirt) & his penpal Aubry (left)

September (right/purple T-shirt) & Her pen pal Rebekah.

Ian's Birthday Party


September Breaking sticks for the fire

To keep warm this winter we decided to build a half cabin off the side of our 5th wheel. We built it on skids so that we can move it before we attach the future second half. This way we can set up the wood stove in the cabin and it will warm the cabin and the 5th wheel. we will use the 5th wheel for bedrooms and a play area and the cabin for kitchen and living room area. Most of this work was done in a weekend. I'll try to get some inside photos soon. It's working really well and staying nice and warm so far. My dad was a huge help and my mom helped by watching the kids so that I could help with the building.
Setting up the skids.

Floor with Poly
And the walls come up

Adding the Roof

Adding Arctic Entry



Our Camp Rober Friend
We made friends with a pair of Camp Robbers who would fly in at every meal for some scraps.
The Out
We wanted to make sure that we had something set up for everyone to use the potty so we set up an out. It had a plywood piece proped up in front to give some privacy. A few days in Ken built the actual house around it. Now we have a very nice little outhouse. I'll have to get an inside shot of that as well. ;) Those with indoor plumbing seem to find outhouses interesting.
The New OutHouse
 This is a random shot from Ken and my Dad out driving around of a wolf track.
Wolf Track & Ken's Hand
 This is Lisa typing an email to Nana. She tells me what she wants to say and I write it on the white board. Then she types it. I put a red dash to mark spaces for her. She does really well and is getting faster. She is learning to type and read all at the same time.
Lisa Typing an email to Nana

Dozer & Tank

Oak's Lovey "Boo Bear" was the victim of a dog attack. He left Boo outside and Pam desided he was a chew toy. I had to sew his face and foot back together, give him a new nose, new ear and crochet a new scarf.
Franken Boo, Boo Bear after dog attack
Our neighbors Art and Grizz came over to use the runway with their flying machine. I took pictures as they took off and flew around. Art went for the first flight and then his son Grizz went out. We had fun watching them.
Art, Grizz and their flying machine

Art Heading Down the Runway

Art Taking Off

Grizz at Takeoff

Flying overhead

Over all August was pretty uneventful other than dealing with the same ol drama. Most of our spare time has been spent working on the cabin. On a forward note and peek into September, Ken is working on trying to get a moose. I went in and put in a few hours of work at Dart AM Farm picking beans. I'm hoping to go do some more picking next week as they are in need of harvest help. Ken is still driving the Village Express and the kids are still being little goofy nut heads. Pre-K is set to start at the school again at the end of the month IF the school is still open. I've heard that at this point they are a student short of the needed count and may end up closing. If that happens September and Ian wont have a school to attend when they move up here and it may cause some young families to leave the area so that their kids can attend school. For us it's not a huge deal as we planned to mostly homeschool correspondance through the school anyway. That way the kids could still go into school for the social aspect but we wouldn't have to drive them in everyday. We are also planning a more hands on learning experiance for our kids and we hope to have more choice as to what they learn about. In my experiance homeschooled kids are well equiped for college because they have to learn to study and be self  motivated early on. I hope that the school will not have to close if it does it could be years before it's able to re-open if it ever does.

Blessings to all of my friends, family and readers.

She is not afraid of the snow for her household: For all her household are clothed with scarlet. Proverbs 31:21 KJV

After picking this verse for this post I re-read Proverbs 31 which I have read many times and have highlighted. What an example we have laid out before us. Though I often fall short I will not fail to strive to be a Proverbs 31 woman.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

O How Pride Doth Come Before The Fall

I'm sure that some of you are waiting for an update on events from July and August. I'm working on it but having a hard time uploading all the pictures.

Meanwhile I need to clear my head about something so I thought hey why not share my embarasing jack***ery with the world. Nothing brings you back down to earth after all, better than a big smack in the face saying "hey you! remember, your a shmuck". I'll start first with a little story from a few weeks ago while working on the half cabin (yes I mean half cabin will explain in July/Aug update). Anyway Ken had gone up to help our friends the Scott's and I had started putting up some insulation. I got the wall done that he had asked me to do and thought well heck I'll just go right on ahead and get it all done. I'll even stand this other wall and get it started. We did a double 2 x 4 wall with offset studs so the wall I was standing was an inside wall. A while later Ken comes home and here I am beaming so proud that I...YES I... had single handedly finished the insulation. What a big help I had been to my wonderful husband how pleased he would be for the break in working with insulation. Hear all that pride talking? Well thats were the fall comes it comes......I used the wrong insulation! I used the unfaced that we had used on the outer walls instead of the faced. I didn't even realize we had two different kinds. I had just started with the open bunk and then opened the next bunk on the stack. What a SHMUCK! Ken forgave me and we ended up just leaving it that way since it wasn't a huge deal. It's just the point of just when you think you did something great WHAM!

Now if you thought that was good buckle your seat belt. This one here is the mother of all screw ups. My motivation for this little rant. Lets start with a little back story since you haven't had the pleasure of reading my unpublished July/Aug Update as of yet. We are trying to help out some older friends the Scott's with things that need to be done around their place. When Ken is gone I enjoy going up and helping with whatever I can. It makes me feel useful and I truelly enjoy helping the people that I care about. Anyway the past couple of days we have been doing some little odd jobs getting things ready for the winter. One of todays tasks was putting some gravel around the base of the house to fill in holes that might look inviting to mice and other small creepy crawly things. Ah and in steps me with my brilliance. I will go and fetch the gravel I say. Not in 5 gal buckets but in...dun dun duhhhhh... THE BACKHOE!!!! Yes, I was going to attempt (in Ken's absence) to drive the back hoe accross the street to the gravel pit and bring back a bucket O gravel. Did I do it? YES I DID! Was I proud as can be? Yes I was. I clammered up in that ol backhoe look at me arent I just smart. I shoveled out some accross the front of the house. Looks good I thought. Then next step. Drive around to the back. Ok here I go. OOPS better stop I thought "I don't think the hoe will clear those power lines" better back up and go around the other way. OK ready for the clencher? Can I get a drum roll please?!?! So proud still! I had driven the back hoe to the pit. I had scooped a bucket of gravel. I had driven back. I had completed the front side and I missed the power lines I am sooooo.... wait a minute...whats that??? NO I couldn't have heard right?? YUP POWER LINES ARE DOWN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! sh** I missed one set of power lines to bad I already took down the main one to the house. Here I am supposed to be helping and I just caused more damage in a few seconds than I could stand. I wanted so bad to bury my head in the sand and cry! The last thing on earth I would want is to cause hard ship on someone that I care about especially while I'm supposed to be helping. conclusion I AM A WORTHLESS SHMUCK!!!!! It seems like the harder I try to be helpful the more I screw things up. If anyone has some advice for me on how not to fail so misserabley at everything I touch I would love to hear it. I just want to help and be useful why is such a good intension always squashed under the weight of failure.

Ok I'll step down off my soap box now. The kids have finally fallen asleep so I'm going to walk back up to the Scott's and see if I can help repair the damage caused by hurricane Sarah. Wish me luck and Pray Hard that I don't mess up anything else today.

Blessings to all of you and big hugs too. :)