December 19, 2008

Happy Holidays!

I captured this picture during the Christmas program on Thursday. The program was a success and it was cute seeing all the little ones dressed up. Look at those Cheeks!

December 18, 2008

Schools Out....

For the Winter! Finally. It's over. The long awaited semester of college is done! Now, I can officially say that I have a year and half left (which it's been for the last year!). It's nice to not have to worry about homework when we get home. So. For now, both Clint and I are done for the semester until January 12!

December 12, 2008

Happy Birthday!


Just wanted to note that it's Clint's birthday today! We had a wonderful day at school with most of the elementary kids shouting "Happy Birthday Mr. Shultz!" and making him birthday cards all day...At the end of the day, one of the teachers made a German Chocolate Cake for him (his fav.) it saved me time in the kitchen baking :) BUT-I did make him his favorite: Sesame Seed Chicken, and Satay Chicken...It was delicious! A student from his class-a cute little girl and her sister were staying with one of the teachers here...They wanted to visit Mr. Shultz and I so we had them over for some more cake and watched a movie. It was really fun...

December 10, 2008

It's Christmas Time!

It's Christmas time! My favorite time of the year, while everything just seems to feel a little bit more special, magical, and happiness. We have made our little 'hole in the wall' apartment into a nice little haven for us during this time. We received this fireplace from a teacher who moved and it makes it so much nicer! We didn't have full size stockings so we decorated it with five mini ones. It looks cute!

We bought this polar bear picture from Clint's art teacher from high school. The picture doesn't do it justice, but I can't wait until we get a pretty frame for it. The dolls are from a women here named Buehla, and are known around the world. She makes beautiful pieces!

And here's our Christmas tree:
It's a cute little thing huh?
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Since I have been here in Gambell, I love to look at blogs. I posted about it a few days ago but I wanted to share another one that is of great value for craft ideas and fun handmade stuff. There is amazing giveaway's over there as well and there's one going on right now! She actually gives away GREAT stuff. Just click here to find out about it...but hurry you only have 2 days left!

December 6, 2008

The Day After....


...The storm is a beautiful day. Alaska's beauty is incomparable to any other place on earth.

December 5, 2008

ANUQA

Being on an island, and surrounded by the Bering Sea we have the advantage of experiencing the wind first hand. The Yupik word for wind is "anuqa" (a-new-qwa) the 'q' sound coming from deep within the throat. When I say it, it sounds right but not to the locals. They laugh. It's only natural. Yesterday and today we have had 60 mph winds, and all plane traffic was grounded until earlier today. Clint was a sweetheart and drove back and forth picking up teachers that were walking and giving them a ride. It was nice since the wind can actually push the Honda's back while we are driving. It's that strong. I would take a picture, but it's too cold to take my gloves off! So we left the rain in Ketchikan for the wind here in Gambell(?!).

December 4, 2008

Blogs...

Even though Clint and I don't have any kids (yet). I find myself looking at different blogs with a focus on family,children, and crafts. I visit many daily and you (Erika!) can find them here: Make and Takes,Soulemama,DesignMom, Lisa Leonard, and a personal favorite: Flip Flops and Applesauce. I have found some amazing, creative, fun ideas for holidays, everyday fun, organization and more! One thing that I found out from Flip Flops and Applesauce was a budgeting tool. It's called pearbudget.com. It has templates that are a quick fix to find out where all your money is going :) A very neat tool.

I also came across her embossing place cards. They are really cute, and I made some Christmas cards using her techniques...Here are some pictures:

December 3, 2008

Dinner...

If someone ever asks me, "have you ever had whale meat?" I can say, "Well...Yes I have!"...A good friend of ours came over last night with a big bag of whale meat. Clint cut, cleaned, and put it in the freezer right away. Tonight, he cooked some mixed with spices and soy sauce....Boy was it yummy! We had it over rice and gravy. The meat is dark...real dark. It tasted more like beef than sea mammal. I am really glad that we were able to get some...Now we have some to last us all winter long with our salmon. So, we have whale and salmon stocked up in our freezer. It's going to be a good winter indeed (except for the windstorm that the weather man reported!).

December 2, 2008

Whaling Day....School Closed....

We received a call last night that school is closed tomorrow because a different family had been successful in hunting another whale! 2 whales in 2 days is such an exciting adventure for the community, and us as teachers. This was a very surreal experience. School closed because of a whale? I have never thought of something like that! The district sets aside 3 days for closure of the school in the case of a whale hunt, which helps the community out as well. I think it's so important that we respect the ways of life here in Gambell. So, today we took our skis and headed towards the north beach again to watch the hunt of the whale. This time when we arrived, there was meat that was already divided laying on the ground. The captain of the whale crew gets the first cut of the meat, then the other members of the crew, and then finally divided among the other families in the community. Yesterday's whale was given to the men of the village, and today, the women. This is such a neat custom that these villagers have, and it's such a neat way of life.
Here are some more pictures for our enjoyment:

Here are the hunters with their spears, taking a break from cutting the meat:
Here are the sections of meat! There was a lot:
The men climb right on the whale to get to the meat:
And a close up: I'm not sure what the black part is, but I'm going to find out and then let you know.

December 1, 2008

Whaling

To the community members here in Gambell, Whaling is an honored tradition that brings celebration to the people. Today, one of the families here in Gambell was successful in hunting a Bowhead whale. We heard the news around 1:00 that they had a few strikes on the whale (they use spears that have bombs at the end. When the spear hits the whale, the bomb explodes inside). It was not until about an hour later that they had the whale close enough to the beach that they could work on it. When we arrived at the beach on the northend of the island we could see that many community members have been waiting there for a while. The kids where playing on the ice-covered ground, and the parents watching. As we approached the whale, we saw that it was SO big that they could not get it on the beach completely so they had to work on it from the boats. This was such an exhilarating experience. I have learned about it through my college anthropology class, but nothing beats the real thing. It was an unremarkable, unforgettable experience.

This was the site we saw when we were approaching the whale. The villagers were congrigating together. It was a beautiful day too!

Here are some boys, sitting and looking at the whale while the men try and figure out a way to bring it on shore:

While the boys watch the whale some little girls in their quapahoks (winter coats) playing...They are so darned cute!:
While the hunters where still discussing tactics, the boys tried to help pull the whale and Clint, in the orange coat helped:)
It was getting way too cold out for me to stand and wait until they got the whale onto shore, so I asked Clint if we could leave. He was a little disapointed, but standing out in 5 degree weather with the wind chill isn't fun. So we left. The villagers however, stayed until 1:00 in the morning working on the whale. Some stayed even later trying to get as much meat as possibe.

What an exciting day here in Gambell!

November 29, 2008

Thanksgiving Weekend

This weekend was a well rested, well needed mini vacation! Clint and I spent the weekend cross country skiing, running, eating, sleeping, and watching movies. First off, school was out at 2:30 on Wednesday to start off the holiday weekend. It was a beautiful day, so Clint and I decided to go cross-country skiing by the frozen lake. I was getting better as my balance was improving. Here are some pictures:


Before the 2:00 dinner, Clint and I decided to go for a run by the airport which was fun in the sense that I was working out, but not fun because it is very hard to run on snow and ice. Very hard. I consider myself to be an in-shape athlete, but this challenged me. The weather was beautiful but c.o.l.d.! The sun was just setting so it was a pretty site. We had a fabulous dinner with some of the staff members here at the six plex on Thursday. TONS of food and desserts. It's always nice to know-no matter what- that when you are away from family, friends will fill the emptiness during special occasions and I am VERY thankful for friends:). This was the first time that I have been away from home and although it wasn't a bad experience, I'd much rather see my family during the holiday season.The rest of the weekend Clint and I just vegged out, which was a much needed rest. We watched movies and slept the entire time!

November 24, 2008

Snowy Saturday...

This Saturday's wind and snow did not stop Clint and I from having a little outdoor fun. Nope. Today we decided to try Cross Country Skiing, even though the weather wasn't THAT good outside. It took us about 15 minutes to get all of our outdoor gear on, but finally we headed out the door...This is what it looked like:

It was an experience for sure. I never really got the hang of it, and only fell about 3 times. I say it was the wind, but Clint thinks I'm just spazzy.

November 16, 2008

Nome Sweet Nome

Clint and I just got back from Nome. It was a good 2 day-1 night trip and was worth the money! Clint had to take his Praxis test and I decided to tag along for the night. We arrived in Nome around 7pm on Friday, went to the hotel and then ate at a place called Molano's Pizza. We had sushi and a pineapple pizza, which is not a great combo but they were both good. We went to the hotel and while Clint studied I watched my favorite shows on HGTV and STYLE, that was a real treat seeing as how we don't own cable. The next morning I stayed in bed while Clint took his test (he said he felt confident about it, so hopefully he passed!) and then we walked around town taking pictures and then we went to a coffee shop and stayed for about 2 hrs. We then walked to the AC store and bought ourselves some groceries to take home! We have real fruit, veggies, and salads! Then we waited at the aiport for another 2 hours and finally boarded on a 9-seat aircraft. I absolutely hate riding on these bush planes, but I guess it was worth it. Here are some pictures:
This is the view from the airport in Gambell. It's not really an airport, but a runway and pavement with a building to hold the tractor. Beautiful view though!
This is our hotel The Aurora, it looks like a castle and is really beautiful. It was nice staying there for the night.
This is end of the race! How cool would it be to be there when the contestants are coming in from the long race.

November 13, 2008

This one's for you Momma!

Everyone in my family including my husband jokes about me not being able to cook. It does get a little tiring, but there is some truth in their sarcasm, I don't cook very often so therefor, don't have a lot of experience. But in my defense, Clint loves to cook, so why take that enjoyment away from him? I have NO objections for him cooking for me every night:) . This allows me to explore in my creativity while baking. Again, everyone in my family jokes that I can't really bake either. Well, since we've moved to Gambll, I have become a very good baker, and to prove this to some (my mom and family back home :) that I even took a picture of my ever-so-famous soft pretzels!
I don't like tooting my own horn....But these were SO good and looked so professional that I just had to make a post about it. Clint made fun of me for taking pictures, but I do need proof of what I have accomplished up here:)
I will definitely be making these back home...I know my family will be thrilled to taste these!
See mom, you did teach me some baking!

Pictures

Here are some pictures of our walk last weekend. The weather was cold, dark, and snowy. A great day to get out and into the outdoors!
Sierra has always loved the snow-I can't hold her leash because she runs too fast and pulls my arm too hard!
A view of the "mountain" we are going to climb.
Can you see the bears sitting in the picture? These are actually whale bones that are right outside our apartment.
Here's me! Good thing I'm a silhouette. The landscape is truly beautifully different here.

October 30, 2008

Read!

This was an inspiring quote I found in another blog and wanted to share

“This is the true joy in life, to be used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one, to be thoroughly worn out before you are thrown on the scrap heap. To be a force of nature instead of a feverish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy. I am a member of a community and as a member it is my privilege to do for it whatever I can before I die. Life is no brief candle to me. It is a sort of splendid torch that I want to make burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations.” George Bernard Shaw

October 27, 2008

Back Again...

Today was the first day back from our long week in Unalakleet. Back to reality. It was a good conference, and it was nice to see others from around the district collaborating and getting ideas from each other. The food was amazing as always and I tried to eat as many apples, pears, carrots, celery, and other fresh foods before we left! It was amazing how organized it was and it was nice to see that some of the seniors from Unalakleet High School helping out. Besides the class sessions, ther was a lot of vendors that were selling their native artwork and jewelry. We bought a King Polar Bear painting from Clint's art teacher from highschool and now hanging up on our wall. So, besides the fact that we were sharing 2 bathrooms with over 300 people and sleeping in a room with 6 others it wasn't to bad at all. I would go back for the food :) and I guess the collaboration of all the teachers around the district.

We (Clint and I) were able to get out and walk around. It was very nice. Clint also took me on my first Snowmachine (snowmobile) ride ever! He said it was hard to stay focused because I was laughing the whole time, and really loud. We first went up the mountain, and then drove on the Unalakleet River! I know, it was frozen over. The weather was beautiful. Cold. Crisp. Clear. Cold! I will post some pictures once I get it from one of our friends. I had to borrow the camera because that's the one thing I forgot!

October 20, 2008

Hello Sunshine!

So, all busy-ness aside Clint and I went for a nice walk along the beach last Saturday. It was beautiful, sunny and a little warm outside which is different than our normal snowy, cold weather. Here are some pictures:

Oh yeah, we sat and watched a baby walrus for about 20 minutes when we arrived at the base of the mountain. He was a beautiful animal.
And then a picture of us-We didn't have to wear our Parkas!
Hope everyone is having a good week!

October 4, 2008

First Day


of a very very Loooooong winter! Its started snowing yesterday and this morning-everything was white!




September 28, 2008

Just Something I Made

Here are some of the pieces that I have created since we have been here-it's not very much, but I really haven't had as much time as I thought I would up here. I have been on an earring kick lately, and I've surprised myself with some of them. I am happy with my new lovelies! Here they are:

Blue Mother of Pearl: Orange Mother of Pearl:

Pearl with Amethyst:
Green Mother of Pearl:
Peacock Pearl, Mother of Pearl, and Swarovski Crystals:
Blue Mother of Pearl with Swarovski Crystals:

Sterling Silver



September 27, 2008

The Algebra of Infinite Justice....

“The only dream worth having … is to dream that you will live while you’re alive and die only when you’re dead … To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or to complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never to forget.”

-Arundhati Roy

And it starts...

As September comes to an end, I find myself engulfed with an endless routine that consists of work...class...homework...dinner...bed. My state of mind has been robotically challenged with textbook after textbook and internet postings on my class discussion board. I can't see the end of it! I have been going to college full time since the fall of 2005, and I'm two years away from getting my degree. That seems like a lifetime! So if you have been wondering what we've been up to-this was a little summary :) Fun.

September 10, 2008

September 7, 2008

Life in the Bush...Husband Hunts, Wife Cooks.

Clint was invited to go seal hunting with one of the janitors on Saturday. They left around 8 in the morning and went to camp-which is a place where the villagers go to hunt for food. Most of the families here go every weekend to camp. This is a picture of where they went:
These "posts" are spread out across the road for when it gets really foggy out, the hunters and their families can find their way back to the village:

Here is the janitor, Wesley, sitting in his blind. The hunters wait there until a seal comes. Clint said they saw one earlier Sat. morning, but Wesley said he couldn't get a clear head shot.
Here is a Minky whale that was playing around for most of the day:
The scenery is just beautiful-I'm kind of jealous Iwasn't there
And here's Clint: He had fun on Sat. and plans on going again next weekend.


And this is what I did on Saturday along with homework and jewelry: I made a apple pie with graham cracker crust. Clint said it tasted like Kooga(sp? a german dessert), it may not look like much, but it tasted pretty darn good:) And of course, homemade bread. Again, don't let looks fool you-this was really good.


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