Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Kayaking in Seward

Brad's mom, Big Mama, joined us on a trip to the Kenai Peninsula. We visited Homer and Seward, and while in Resurrection Bay, we kayaked to a wonderful waterfall and enjoyed sea otters, waterfowl, and harbor porpoises in their natural habitat. We fell in love with this tiny town and have decided to rank it as our number one pick for the next rotation.

While there, we visited Exit Glacier, which has many hiking trails for us to conquer. The recent bear sitings and the desire to get to the Roadhouse for a premium feast on salmon kept us from exploring more, but the sunset over this receding phenom was a beauty to behold while we dined on freshly caught fish.

We had passed the afternoon at the Alaska SeaLife Center, where we enjoyed the antics of locally rescued sea otter, Skittle. Sadly, Skittle died shortly after our visit. He managed to unhook the grate to the sewage pipe and drowned in the pipe. He was bound for NYC Aquarium and was slowly acclimating to loud noises and boisterous crowds. His adorable demeanor grabbed our heartstrings. The sad tidings of his departure were hard to stomach after watching this little guy in action.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Hiking in Kodiak

June and July provided locals and visitors with perfect weather, albeit hot by our standards, to hike and explore the hillsides. With friends and family, I climbed peaks and enjoyed the blooms on familiar pathways of Spruce Cape and Near Island. We climbed up this snowbank, but on the way down, I plopped on my arse and slid down, giggling the whole time. What fun to slide down in the snow in JULY!
One of my favorite views of Mill Bay is at the top of this path, but the lupine took my breath away that afternoon.
Wild Iris and Barometer, what a great combination.

Dinner Cruise

Redfaced comorants in a rookery on Long Island
Fred, our local sea lion in St. Herman's harbor
We booked a dinner cruise with Galley Gourmet of Kodiak. Aboard the SeaBreeze, we set off for a small cove on Long Island to dine on halibut and then make our way back into the small boat harbor. Armed with a camera and warmed by a wool blanket on the deck, we spied puffins, harbor seals, redfaced comorants, and sea lions on our three hour tour.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Becca's Baby Shower

In June, I hosted a small baby shower for our neighbor, Becca. I chose the theme, Gone Fishin', and our venue was the perfect backdrop for our theme. The venue was the conference room in the local fisheries lab. The views on that sunny afternoon gave way to floatplane takeoffs, mountain views, and sparkling waters. If I had my druthers and a notarized authorization for no rain from Mother Nature herself, we could have celebrated outside.

The presents were throughtful and laughter constant as we dined on a fish-fusion menu designed by local caterer, Gwyn's Cookery. Our games included baby bingo, and our door prizes included someone's very own tackle box (congrats, Beth!).

Check out the card in this photo. It's a baby with an ipod, and the caption is ipood. Hehe!

Friday, July 10, 2009

My boys

Brad and Tok, Ft. Abercrombie, July 2009

Business Travel with my own Bellhop

Brad accompanied me on a recent business trip, and I have to say, I like having someone around to carry my suitcase. Our first stop was Anchorage, where we drove up to Denali State Park, not to be confused with Denali National Park.

The state park offers great viewing stations of the south and north facing slopes of Mt. McKinley. Although it was cloudly upon our arrival, we enjoyed the drove to and from. On the way up Parks highway, we stopped in Talkeetna for lunch. This little town is now a tourist trip with a hippie flare. We dined at Mile High Pizza Pie, where we enjoyed reindeer sausage flatbread sandwiches.
From Anchorage, my business travel took us to Juneau. We fell in love with the town of Juneau. It's green, steep mountains engulf this little town. The tourist district is well marked, but Brad managed to find some great bagel shops and restaurants to enjoy. You may see us there in the future...

Exchange Students: A New Chapter

Bruna left at the beginning of June. I will miss the thick Latin accent crying my name as she greeted me so warmly these past six months. On behalf of Rotary, I hosted a small going away party. We had a wonderful spread and two apple pies, which is Bruna's favorite American dish. On the day she left, she left her mark on the graffiti rock outside the high school.

In late July, I will send off Angie to Denmark. Her Danish is coming along wonderfully, and she has corresponded with her new host parents about her new school and town. In August, we welcome Sagar from India. He is from the same area as my brother in law, which came in handy when I called Suketu to ask how to pronounce our new student's name.