I know it has been close to forever since I have blogged…year two has easily been a lot crazier than year one. So, instead of filling you all in on everything since my last blog, I will fill you in on the past few weeks. We have had a teacher transfer to Kivalina from another village to be our Pre-K teacher until the end of the year. We have had an aide come from another village to help me out with one of my kiddos and she is living with me, normally I would not be fond of this, but, we are getting along wonderfully. But wait, there is more! This week we have had 17 military personnel at the school conducting sports physicals in the hallway, performing surgery on animals in our science classroom and doing dentistry in our pre-k classroom…with all of this we have also had ski instructors from NANANORDIC, there has been 9 ski instructors taking our students, community and teacher cross-country skiing during the day. With all of this going on I have captured some pictures for your viewing pleasure. With only 3 weeks of school left the kids are crazy and the teachers are even crazier. I will post pictures…
Spring Break started yesterday, and as you can tell (since I am writing this at 12:21am my hours are already messed up! BUT because of that Emma left my house tonight at midnight and saw some amazing norther lights, so her Fonger and I went out to capture them. Here are a few pictures, nothing special but at least you will get the feel :)
I really need to get better about blogging more often!
We are back in the FULL swing of school. A few weeks ago we got LOTS of snow, I attached pictures so you can all see what a typical day after school is like when we get SO MUCH SNOW. We break paths, shovel the snow away from the windows, off the porch and then we play!
Since my last blog, contracts have come out. I have signed on for a THIRD year in Kivalina…stay tuned for more information coming SOON!
The other day when walking to the store, it was sunny and about -35 and someone said to me “nice out today,ah?’ and it made me giggle as I was walking away, for it to be a beautiful day in Port Townsend it takes sun, no wind, no rain, and it to be in the high 50’s (at least). In Kivalina it takes the sun, that is the only ingredient we need to make it a lovely day. Funny how expectations are different no matter everywhere you go.
Our boys and girls teams will be traveling to Kotzebue this week to compete in the Regional basketball tournament, our principal will be going with them to work the games and attend meetings, this means I will be acting principal this week. It has been 3 weeks since I have had to do this and am excited that I had that break. I appreciate how much our principal does after walking a few miles in her shoes this week.
The 3rd week in March we will have a week of spring break (yay!). Then the first week in April we will be doing testing, actually the first 3 weeks in April we will be having testing. After that its the downhill slide. I can not believe year 2 is almost completed.
Thank you for the prayers—I appreciate it greatly!
I thought it was well over due, a blog with pictures! Here are some photos that have been taken since being back from Christmas break. Weekend walks always entail lots of photos of the ice, snow and cold. There is a few pictures of the “drying rack” used to try fish in the summer, now barren with snow and ice.
And most importantly, the pictures of my “Battle of The Books” kiddos! I am so very proud of my 3/4th Grade team AND 5/6th Grade team! They have read books, answered comprehension questions, got T-shirts and most importantly ENJOYED READING!!
We are at around 7 hours of day light now, more light in the afternoon than int he morning. We’ve had some crazy wind chills lately around -48. Today we have had snow. Nothing better than watching it snow all day.
I have been sick twice since returning back to the village, I had the flu for a good 7 days. Now I have a cold, so its me the couch a book and some video games later today with Emma.
I am shocked that there are only 3 more months until I will be flying home for Summer vacation! Year 2 is ALMOST complete and I just can not believe that!!
Hugs and Kisses from the cold Arctic
This was the other morning before school, our kids were playing Eskimo Games, leg wrestling.
Then there is Fonger, “hiding from the big kids, doing morning attendance”. Every morning we have cones out for each class and our Youth Leaders do the morning announcements and we all do the pledge together.
We have our arrival and departure board in the office and this made my day :) I’M UP I’M UP!!!
And…our amazing principal got us new McQueen School Staff sweatshirts for Christmas, we all wore them today…and happened to have a professional photographer here from Alaska Dispatch (writing a book on barriers of education) who was nice enough to take our picture!
There is always a funny one…this really captures our staff the best ;)
Here is our current weather…YIKES:
Make sure you take a look at the “feels like” and sunrise and sunset….oh yeah, 7 days until I am on my way to WASHINGTON! xoxox
Of course I had to take another breathtaking walk today. Breathtaking due the the fact that is was 0, feels like -21 with the windchill and breathtaking due to the sights I got to see. As always, seen through the eyes of my camera lens….
Well, its coming quickly. Time for Christmas vacation, in 20 more days I will be headed to the lower 48.
This is my home-made-cardboard-green-painted-chtirstmas-tree. :)
This past week we had an awesome full moon, I tried to capture it the best I could but the picture really does not do the moon justice.
So, something I have not talked about on my blog yet, is the fact that Rojo was kind enough to put in the time and the love to make me a beautiful parka. My mom and dad were generous enough to buy the fur for my Christmas present. Here is the final product…
I am also standing next to a GIANT mountain of ice. This parka is my new favorite part of any wardrobe I will ever own. The beautiful silver fox makes the parka. I. Love. It.
Now for walking pictures…
Yesterday we had our teacher-family Thanksgiving. There was WAY too much food, but, the company was great and we even played games afterwards! It was a great way to sped a long weekend.
Today we took another walk out on the ice, in the past week the ice has spread further in to the ocean and even created an ice wall of sorts. It’s pretty amazing to watch all of this happen. We took our walk around 4:00pm, the sun had been down for 20 minutes at this point in time. Here our the pictures…
and…on another note. Please, click on this link and go read the article, it gives you great background on our village, and even has a few quotes from…me!
Well, we all know what last years Thanksgiving brought…lots of puking after my traditional Eskimo dinner. So, I did NOT partake in this years events…well, the eating part anyway. Today started off with a lovely breakfast with Scott, Emma, Fonger and Dana while we watched the parade. Then…Emma and I ventured to Gary and Rojo’s to help make Eskimo Ice Cream to celebrate Terrell’s first caught ptarmigan! Again, I am so much better at stories through the lens of my camera…
Step 1: Peel the skin off the fat of the caribou (tutu).
Step 2: Chop the fat with an Ulu.
Step 3: Put chopped fat in to the pan to melt.
Step 4: wait…wait…wait…wait…wait…wait…wait…
Step 5: Whip it, with it good, with your hand
Step 5 continued: keep going…
Step 6: Add seal oil and milk…while whipping with your hands
Step 7: Add fruit
Step 7: Try it…
Step 8: Walk home with it
That was the end of the eskimo ice cream making :) We then all headed to the school for the community Thanksgiving where they announced that in celebration of Terrell’s first caught ptarmigan there was eskimo ice cream made by “mom, and auntie Emma and Katie”. This is a tradition in the village, when anyone gets their first caught something the family makes food for the community Thanksgiving feats.
The feast was great! Everyone ate and laughed and shared in prayer.
Then the eskimo dancing started..
What a wonderful, blessed Thanksgiving!
On the eve of Thanksgiving I’d like to take a little time to talk about my many blessings. First, my mom and dad, who support and love me more than I could ever wish for. They are also the reason I will have a BEAUTIFUL PARKA (made by Rojo, paid for by mom and dad, perfect Christmas present). Second, my amazing boyfriend and his two wonderful kiddos! Again, I could not wish for more love and support than for what I am given from those three!
My church family is the BEST! Continuous prayers and encouragement are very appreciated.
I am beyond blessed for my job, my perfect students and my amazing co-workers, a great principal and an even better community.
Tonight I ate a marvelous thanksgiving dinner with my adopted Eskimo family, I can not express how much I love this family, my adopted nieces and nephews are adorable and their parents are kind, generous and have accepted me in to their community, home and family. Tomorrow I will break bread (or muktuk) with a community who I have loved since singing that contract (the first time)! This has become my life and my passion and my home, and for that I am not only thankful but incredibly blessed.
Lastly I am thankful for all of you, the blog followers who have kept me afloat! Thank you and happy thanksgiving!