Tuesday, April 29, 2008

So Giddy

This morning we reserved our room at Disney. I am so silly, giddy. I have been excited about it all day. It's much more real now that the reservations have been made. Also worked out schedule for visitors on May 13th. Worked on some details for the Chilkoot and A Mary and U Phil's visit. Planning and preparing is just so much fun! MJ

Sunday, April 27, 2008

All in a weekend . . .

After Saturday School yesterday I headed out to meet up with Jolee. She's another one of those people here that remind me of someone back hope. Kim S. to be exact. It's so strange. But anyway, it was a rainy cool day, but it was fun to be at the beach. She had a shelter reserved and a fire going. We played games and warmed up by the fire. I also took walk and brought back wood. I believe she now thinks that I am a little strange. Oh well, it' the truth.

Bob and I crashed pretty early last night. But I was able to get started on the book I am finishing tonight. Did I already say how I can't get enough of reading? I don't know what it is.

Today has been a lazy day. As my brother says "his day of rest". I have been online quite a bit, read, and the usually Sunday cleaning. No walk today. Since Bob's schedule is changing I am going to start walking to work, so I took today off. My body needed a rest. Feet mostly. I have got to replace my leaky boots. Soon. I also got an email form Aunt Mary about the time her and ETate spent together. Oh, it made me laugh and cry. I can still hear that boys voice in my head. I guess when that goes away, when I can't hear your voice in my head, we've been gone too long. I hope that never happens.

Bob and I were going to go to the movies, but we decided to stay home and watch the Tigers. We would have enjoyed it more if they were winning.

Hopefully our phone will be back tomorrow. MJ

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Another Saturday School. . .

That's where I am at on this lovely Saturday morning. I have plenty of work to do, but first I go through my routine:
1-check school email
2-check gmail
3-check in on the Dood Triplets
4-update Presidential Fitness Log
then I will start work. I did allow myself to finish the book I have been reading this week. I have been engrossed with reading lately. I just can't get enough. I did decide to read some adult books now. When Bob and I went to the library on Wednesday I picked up a couple James Patterson. SAM (Sheri, Angie, Molly) we used to all read them and pass then around. But I am far behind and thought that I will spend the summer catching up on all the ones I haven't read. His short chapters (one or two pages) annoy me, I feel like it is a waste of paper, but they sure do make for quick reads. I can read a couple chapters while I am drying my hair in the morning.

After Saturday School I am heading "out the road" to Auk Rec to meet up with Jolee (she has been a sub here for several months). She is having an all day picnic to raise money for an AIDS Ride she is participating in. And it's her birthday. Bob is on tens now so I've got a fee hours to spend out there before I pick him up. His schedule is changing on Wednesday, he will be Noon to 9 again. (Mom, you're got company now.) It's not his favorite schedule, but he knew it was coming with the tourist season starting soon.

Well, I better get to that work. Too much to do. MJ

Friday, April 25, 2008

Somethins up with the phone

Just in case you try to call us this weekend. We are in the process of changing phone service providers and we apparently didn't set up the new service in time. When we arrived home last night we had no phone. The new provider won't be at our place until Monday. We are fine, you just won't be able to reach us for a few days. If there's an emergency, call Bob at work on Saturday and/Sunday. MJ

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Sounds of the morning

On my walk the last couple of days I have been paying more attention to the sounds that I hear in the morning. The eagles screeching, the wind blowing, the first flights of the day landing and taking off, the diesel generators working away to bring us much needed power. Thank goodness for modern inventions. MJ

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Conserving Energy

So maybe last week we got a little carried away. The giant bill is still going to come. We turned our heat off in the bedroom on Thursday and I woke up Friday with the sniffles. It's now Tuesday and I still have them. Ugh! Needless to say, the heat is back on.

It's been beautiful here since Tuesday. Nice and sunny and warm. On my lunch I have just been sitting outside with the sun on my face. It feels good. It is suppose to continue the rest of the week. One can only hope. MJ

A book review

Okay, so I have got to tell you about this book: "The Diary of a Wimpy Kid". It is frigging hilarious. I could not stop laughing. I checked this book out one day last week for a student that was in my room. Somehow the book grew legs and walked out of my room. I had hoped that it would be turned into the library, but no such luck. This weekend I bought a copy to replace it. But before I turned it into the library I thought that I would read it. It took me 2 nights and I laughed the entire time. I laughed do much that Bob said he had to read it. He finished it today. I am not even kidding when I say it's one of the best books that I have read. Now maybe it helps that I work at a Middle School right now. The book is written as a middle school boy who has a "journal" and his school year. There are also little sketches. The book is 200 pages, but can be read in a night. The next in the series is Rodrick Rules (about the older brother) and I just saw that there was a third. I will probably have to wait for next school year, since there is a waiting list. But I will be looking forward to it. MJ

Sunday, April 20, 2008

A new member to Alaska's First Family

Trig Paxson Van Palin born April 18, 2008. The name Trig is a Norse word meaning "true" and "brave victory". Paxson is a place in Alaska the Palin's find to be the most beautiful and Van comes from Van Halen. OMG! I was all about it until then. Of course the Van makes the name smoother to the tongue. He joins his siblings: Track, Bristol, Willow and Piper and parents: Todd and Sarah. MJ

And the rest of the weekend. . .

Meet Chris for coffee and we walked around downtown enjoying the sunshine. The guy who tied a line between a light post and a tree and practiced walking the tight rope. The group of individuals who cleaned up all the liquor bottles and the group who brought in an entire grocery sack of new ones. We left right about then and did some more walking. Then just sat in the sun talking. The sun felt so good on my face. Still does.

I can't remember if I mentioned that I joined a book club or not. Tristan and some co-workers at her school started one. At first I said no thinking that it was every Thursday and that is just too much of a commitment for me now. But it is once a month. That I can do. The first book March. Based on what the dad, from little women, was off doing while at war. I really struggled with it, but it ended up being pretty good. Not like I would say "go out and read it" but doable and it seems like something that one would read for a book club. It kind of made me laugh how husband and wife see this differently and what they think that the other is thinking. We should all learn to just ask and then the asked should speak honestly. We may be a little better off in the end. MJ

It's been a sunny weekend so far

The sun has been out since Thursday around noon (yes, we still have night time - I mean during the day) and it has been wonderful. As my mother has always said (none of her children like the dark) "This always look better in the daylight" and they do.

Friday after school we went to JoAnn's and picked up a several jar candles. I was so excited to get them in the clearance section for .97. Good deal. We spread them throughout the condo and will use them when necessary. Yesterday Tristan and I got up early and did a little garage saling. It is that time of year again. I am mostly looking for items for my classroom. There is $0.00 budget for the ISS room so I am trying to be resourceful. I found out when we did our taxes this year that teachers get a $250.00 deduction every year. Certainly far less than what most teachers I have known in my life will spend, but it is something and I am going to use it wisely. So I am looking mostly for shelving and books to build the library in my room. Also puzzles and some mind teaser games. I have found with a few of my students (who struggle with staying focused) that puzzles work. So I am searching for ones that also teach. That can mean so many different things. It just depends on how you look at it. I am also always looking for camping/hiking gear and a night stand for Bob's side of the bed. Just a few things. Bob has also asked me to keep an eye out for fishing stuff. I don't know much about what to get in that department, but I'll do my best.

Today is sunny again and I am going to leave here shortly to go meet Chris for coffee downtown. I tried to get him to walk with me, but no such luck. I just can't convince him that it is good. He reminds me so much of brother Scott (y) that it kills me. Same sarcastic whit. There are things God knew we would need and He continues to provide. MJ

Thursday, April 17, 2008

It's a disaster

Yesterday there was an avalanche 40 miles south of Juneau. It took out power lines that are our main source of electricity here. Today there was another. Please click on our newspaper link to read about it. It may not sound like much but it has put Juneau into an energy crisis. At this time they are predicting that our electric bill will increase 500%! That is not a typo. For us that could mean $750 dollars a month. They have flown over the area, but due to the continued avalanche treat cannot get on the ground. With toady's snow, it doesn't look good. We came home yesterday and unplugged pretty much everything, turned the heat off in both bedrooms and shut the door, turned the heat down to 55/60 in the rest of the condo, turned down the hot water heater. Wow, I just had a flashback to the square house. All the rooms closed off and mom, Aaron and I sleeping in the living room on mattress with the kerosene heater. I guess my brothers (Aaron, Scott) are right once a hillbilly, always a hillbilly. Tonight I am typing this to you in dark. They saw that it could cost $300,000 to $450,000 per day to run the town on our diesel generators. Today the Governor declared a state of emergency. I will have more to add on that later. Some of us don't feel that was wise. I'll explain why another day. On the upside we have diesel generators that were running so most of us never knew what happened when it did. It is going into the longer days, soon we'll only have 4-6 hours of darkness and it's not really all that dark. It is coming up on tourist season and Bob will have lots of overtime. I have my theater job and possible a job at the Red Dog Saloon. We will both be gone for a couple weeks (at the same time) this summer so we can shut this place down. Even though we got all that crazy snow today it is getting warmer out. So it's not all bad. A little scary right now, but well get through. I am going to be saying prays for all the families here who are struggling to get by. This could be devastating for so many people.

Okay, I will tell you why some of us are not happy about the governor going to the Feds for money. This entire legislative session there was talk about what to do with our states surplus of money. Moving the capital was introduce again, because we have all this money. New projects were talked about, because we have all this money. So Alaska keeps talking about all this extra money we have and now when we are in need we go to the Feds. Are you kidding me? Our country is struggling and we, with extra money, darn to go to the Feds for money. Since we have lived here I have heard several people talk about "the lower 48", "the Americas", "the United States", separating Alaska form the rest of the country and here we sit with a surplus of money and we dare to go to the rest of the country. Don't even get me started. Oh, I already have. Another little funny Ha! Ha! - - - While the Legislature was in session they actually vetoed a bill to give residents an energy rebate because of the high cost. Maybe now they will change their minds. Okay, I'm done. That's why I was going to wait until later. Bob and I are both fired up and he is sitting next to me and we are feeding off each other. So look at the positives, there are many.

Again, please check out our newspaper there are a couple pictures and more details that will explain how, why. Well, when it's dark all I want to do is sleep and it is dark now. Sweet Dreams. MJ

A record breaking day

We are in the middle of a winter storm here. It is crazy. I walked in at least a foot of snow. Shall I say marched an hour and a half. The people I work with know that I walk and many have stopped to offer me rides, but I always pass it up. So today a couple of them said "I saw you and was going to offer you a ride, but you always say you like to walk". Today I might have taken the ride. Oh well, it was good for me. No one had gotten out and plowed. Reason being that all of the plow trucks had been summerized, the snowblowers had been put away and I do believe that the shovels had been hung up! So clearing the roads was slow. All that, a record breaking day of snow and we STILL HAS SCHOOL! (I was gonna change this, but what the heck!) No stinkin' snow day this year. A delayed start would have been nice. By noon, it was beautiful, clear skies and sunny. We have a couple pictures that we'll post later. MJ

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

He made it

Bob had his Root Canal today and although it took 21/2 hours, he made it. He's pretty wiped out and not very happy, but it is done. They voted to take fluoride out of our water last year here in Alaska and Bob insist that is why he now has cavities and needed a root canal. Maybe the cavities, but the root canal, any of us who have had one know that that is a long time in the making. Anyway, he's decided t go and get the rest done and get his teeth cleaned. Yeah.

It is still cold and rainy and windy. I had to get my winter coat back out. Are you kidding me? It is cold. May 1st, May 1st.

One of my customers from Hallmark, who became a friend, gave birth to triplets on the April 8th. They are strong and holding their own, but please pray them. I have been reading their blog and they are so beautiful. MJ

Monday, April 14, 2008

It must be the $20 socks

I broke down yesterday and wore a pair of the hiking socks that I had purchased for the Chilkoot. They were on sale, so I only paid $10. Now I know why people pay so much for a pair of socks. They were like pillows for my feet. They are so comfy. I'll be keeping an eye out for more sales. It is rainy and very windy the past couple days. On my walk yesterday, my hat blew off. Brr. Bob is training this week so he had Saturday off instead of Monday/Tuesday. It's hard to believe that the first ship will be here April 30th. Bob has had a busy winter and it's almost time for the season to begin. Not much of a break for him this year.

If you looked outside right now you wouldn't believe that it is April 14th. It is snowing. I told myself that it was winter until May 1st. So I wouldn't be disappointed. I am so glad I did, since it is still snowing. Ugh. The skunk cabbage is about 8 inches tall, which means that spring is on the way. We'll just see how long it takes. MJ

Saturday, April 12, 2008

It's another Saturday School

Yeap, that's where I am at. Good place to be, I have plenty of work to do. Yes, I'll be getting there soon. Just have to go through my normal routine: check and respond to emails, check friends blogs, update our blog, work.
I almost messed up, last night was the Jazz Band performance. Luckily the teacher sent out an email or we would have missed it. Those kids rock! I'll try and put a snippet of their performance on here this weekend. It was fun. I was laughing when we got home talking to Bob about what recluses we are. We were in public for exactly one hour, then back home, lock the door and crawl into our cave. He said the same thing that I feel "it's all good that was".
The plans are being made for Red Dog. Bob will be gone at least two months this year. They are breaking them up into one month trips, that will help it to go by quicker. His first trip I should be gone for two weeks of it. It's nice that they worked it out that way. More details about him leaving when we have them all. Funny, he is going to go to the Red Dog Mines to work and I maybe working part-time this summer at the historical Red Dog Bar here in Juneau. It's the one they always show on the Travel Channel. Bob and I went in for the first time when Sheri was here. Goofy little place. Fun.
I better get to work. . . MJ

Friday, April 11, 2008

It's a good way to start the day

My office is directly across the hall from the orchestra room and kiddie corner to the band room. You might think that in a middle school that could be bad, it can be a little repetitive when the beginning bands play Christmas songs for the entire school year. But for the most part it's pretty cool. Our jazz band practices 3 mornings a week and they are rockin' good. This weekend they are playing at the Folk Festival. This is a big deal as no middle school has ever been invited to play at the dance on Saturday Night. They will be playing an entire 50 minutes. Needless to say, we will be there. They get my head moving to the music every morning that they play. It's pretty sweet. I'll try to record some of it on Saturday, to give you a taste. Off I go, groovin' to the music. . . MJ

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Someone's a little cranky

Bob has had a tooth that has been bothering him, so bas so, that he asked me to make him a dentist appt. He went yesterday and he is not so happy. Now me, I feel like it's not so bad. He's got a root canal, a big time cleaning, and a few other teeth to fill. He hasn't been to the dentist in, we don't know how long. I go every 6 months and that's normal, I get that it's no fun. But he is still mad and says "stop trying to make it better". Funny how he always tells me, just go and get it done, like it's no big deal. Now he knows. I just told him to lay his head down and go to sleep. Yicks! His next appt is scheduled for next Tuesday, pray for that dentist. When he pulls that shot out there's no telling what Bob will do. MJ

Monday, April 7, 2008


Ladies and Gentlemen - This is a first. Bob always finishes his steak, then eyes mine until I am done and gobbles it up. This time I finished what I was going to eat and passed it too him. He's so full he can't even eat it. It is a sad day. All he keeps saying is "I can't, I can't, I hurt, I hurt myself". When will he ever learn. Maybe my food will be safe soon. MJ

He still looks the same

Yep, he looks the same as he did when we went to bed last night. Although when I got home from work, he sure does look a little crazier. I got him a back scratcher for his birthday and he said he didn't shower just so he'd be itchy and could scratch himself all day. Yeah, probably too much information, but then it's me, I always talk too much.

We just finished dinner:
baked potato (rolled in salt - I want to learn to duplicate Outbacks, they just have the best)
garlic bread
New York Strip (seared to perfection!)
and for desert - I made little individual bunt cakes (golden yellow with cinnamon and nutmeg - thanks Mom N.) topped with whipped cream cheese frosting and vanilla ice cream

I can be quite the little "Suzy Homemaker" when I wanna be. MJ

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Another year older

Tomorrow Bob will celebrate his 41st birthday. I remember when he turned 30 and Sheri and I thought that was so old. At the time it did seem that way. I mean we were 23 and 30 was ancient. Now of course we're past that 30 mark and it doesn't seem so old. Another year, another gift to see what you will become. MJ


Sunday Morning Hike

We set out this morning to get in our 6 mile hike and be home before noon. We were home before noon, but that 6 miles turned into 8.58. To which Tristan's husband Adam asked "Why?". The why is because many of the trails are still snow covered and we hiked up the mountain behind our condo, reached the top and realized we had less than 2 miles in. One the way back down we decided to take a turn off. But after repeatedly sank into the snow up to our knees we decided that we had gone far enough. So we headed out and decided to walk to Tristan's. It does actually feel good, mentally.

On our way up the mountain we got the pleasure of meeting a young man n his lavender moon and stars robe when his dog decided to follow us. Tristan got a close-up, I was a little further away. Thank goodness. MJ

I've been forgetting . . .

I keep forgetting to blog about a little research I did on the Ice Caves Trail. The one that Sheri insisted I was trying to kill her on. She might have not been so far off. I discovered in one of our trail books that the recommended time to hike the trail is in summer, maybe late spring. But not when your wading through snow up to your hips. Ah, but what is life without a little adventure? MJ

Saturday, April 5, 2008

It's the weekend

The morning started out beautiful, but has turned a little gray. It really pays to get up early here. There have been many a morning that it is warmer and dryer in the early morning than in the afternoon. It is nice enough to have the windows open though.

I went running this morning. Kind of. Tristan is going to lead a "Girls on the Go" group next year at her school. It's a running group for girls that also talks about "girl stuff". The catch is, she hates to run and I can't say that I am a real fan. But with trying to get in shape, I joined her today. It wasn't so bad, just 1.2 miles and were ran a minute then walked a minute. We survived. Who knows, maybe to run again another day. MJ

Friday, April 4, 2008


I am on my way to the bronze metal. Got a little ahead of myself! MJ

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Presidential Fitness

The Governor put out a challenge for all Alaskan's to take the "Presidential Fitness" Challenge. So today I signed up. I did what would be the second level, some one who is already active, and I am on my way to the Silver Award. I have no idea what that means. MJ

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

April Fool and I am the Fool

I reached for the bathroom door handle today at school and oh, lucky me, there was vaseline underneath. Inside, the bathroom stalls had been tp-ed. Oh those little pranksters! MJ