...with a husband and 5 sons, I am truly outnumbered....stories and thoughts on life from a mom in a houseful of little men!

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Reliving my Sled Dog Passion

Today I gave a mushing talk/demonstration for a group of about 100. I had been asked by a friend about 1 1/2 weeks ago to do this for a homeschooling group. Honestly, I didn't want to do it at first, just because of the "detail factor"--what to do with the boys (not to mention it was at lunch and through naptime!), how to manage a dog pulling me across glaze ice into the van, carrying in all the gear, etc. I voiced my apprehension to my friend, and she arranged for her husband (thank you, Derek!) to sit with and handle the boys the entire time so I could concentrate on the presentation. (By the way, they were SO well behaved; I really am proud of them for sitting so quietly for 2 hours!) I am so glad I agreed to do this; it was fantastic to relive my passion for these dogs and this sport! I took along an entire set-up of ganglines, tuglines, necklines, and a snowhook. I also took along some dog booties, a skijoring rig, and of course--the star of the whole show--Willow! She was so nervous and excited when I loaded her into the van this morning--she was literally shaking. By the time we reached our destination and she had a few minutes to take it in, she splayed herself out in front of my feet, front legs crossed in true lady-like husky fashion. Basically, she owned the place. The presentation went great. I shared a little about myself and how my interest in huskies began, introduced Willow and discussed the history of her breed, and then demonstrated how to hook up lines. To do this, I had children volounteer to be a "sled" and "dogs." They got a real kick out of that, and it helped to engage them in the presentation. The best thing about today, is that it brought me back into this wonderful passion that brought us to Alaska in the first place. With a family including 3 young children, it has had to take a backseat in recent years. There is a time and season for everything, and traipsing across the tundra with dogs doesn't fit in real well with the season we're presently in! But, I sure loved getting a taste of it again today. And just in time--the Iditarod starts in 1 1/2 weeks.

Friday, February 17, 2006

This one is for Jodi!

See Jodi? We really do eat moose burger, and we're proud of it!

Interesting that you made that comment about us "really living in Alaska" today (Friday the 17th,) on a day that we immersed ourselves in the history and legend of this great state... The boys and I had a field trip today, to the Knik Museum. It is located in just one of a handful of buildings still left standing at the "Old Knik Townsite", just a few miles down the road. The building is 100 years old, and used to be the place where everyone would be--the life of the town--the pool hall. Knik used to be the place. It is hard to believe that this little ghost town is actually the reason there is a city of 300,000 people (Anchorage) just across the Inlet from here. Formerly, the city we now call Anchorage, was nothing other than the spot ships bound for Knik anchored--hence, "Knik's Anchorage" it was called. The ships would anchor there and smaller boats would bring the goods across Knik Arm (Cook Inlet) to the port at Knik. Later when the railroad was built, people gradually moved from Knik to be nearer to the train. Knik just sort of died away. Meanwhile, Knik's Anchorage began to spring to life, and the "Knik's" portion of it's name was dropped. There's your history lesson for today! Anyway, I really did enjoy the museum today. It brought back to life all the excitement we first felt when we moved here eight years ago. Afterward, I couldn't resist stopping by the turn-out which overlooks Knik Arm. The tide was in, the sun was shining, and the mountains loomed in the backdrop of it all. This is truly a special place to live.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Love is Grand!

Happy Valentine's Day! We are so thankful for our little "cupids"...

Saturday, February 11, 2006

It's Spring (Let me DREAM!!!)

Spring is in the air! Chinook winds came through today and we enjoyed a small taste of Spring. Don't worry; I won't be fooled. There are at least a good 10 weeks left of Winter and "break-up" before we'll enjoy the warmth and green again. But, for today, I was satisfied to bask in a little sun and breathe in the scrumptious scent of the thaw. We giddily hung out in the yard and savored the fact that it was nearly 40 degrees. Ahhh...

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Can it be? The big "0-1" is already here!

Happy 1st Birthday, Spunky Cub! Today has been a "one"derful day, full of reminiscence, thankfulness, and yes, even a few tears. My baby is quickly becoming a big boy, and though it sounds cliche', I really do not know where the time has gone. I remember one year ago today so incredibly clearly--the perfect birth experience. Truly it was. This little guy has given us so much love and joy. No words, parties, or gifts are befitting of expressing our love for him. I'm just so thankful the Lord saw fit to bless us with him. We had a little family dinner party in celebration tonight. I think Spunky enjoyed himself, though I know he definitely did not know what the fuss was about. He was completely disinterested in his presents (the big brothers happily opened most of them), and totally enraptured by his cake!

Li'l Maestro

Wise Bobcat at his violin group lesson today... Here he is with his instructor, playing his solo (Twinkle Twinkle Little Star--He is SO proud to be able to play the "Theme.") When Ms. Joy asked him what he'd like to play today, his little chest puffed right out and he declared, "The Theme!" When Ms. Joy then asked would he like to play the "bread" (the beginning) of the Theme, he retorted, "I want to play the WHOLE thing!" I'm so bummed I accidentally had my camera on low resolution for this one...it's hard to see him very well, but rest assured he was very endearing.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Pass the Meatballs!

No more mush! Spunky Cub was so proud of his grown-up fare at supper tonight--spaghetti and meatballs! Can you believe this little guy will celebrate the "big 0-1" tomorrow?

From the Mouths of Babes...

Today Lil Eaglet said a couple of cute things which made me laugh; I'm sure there will be more before the day is done (there always are...I LOVE 3-year-olds!)

As he tripped over a baby toy on the floor, "Mommy! You have GOT to pick this up! I'm trippin' on it!" (Now where has he heard that before?!)

As he was watching Stemonit the cat, "Why is she shakin' her head?! Was she learnin' how to shake her bell?"

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Bye-bye Frumpy Nursing Bras! (Thanks to Help From My 3-Year-Old!!

Oh my goodness. I took Lil Eaglet with me underwear shopping on Sunday--just he and I. Upon walking into the bra section, he looks around with eyes as big as saucers and exclaims, "Mommy!? Is those hats!?" Later on, he notices the mannaquin and asks me, "Mommy, WHY is she 1/2 naked? What's she name is?" I picked out a few bras with his "help," and proceeded on to the dressing room. "Is this a restaurant?" he asked, as he looked down the row of dressing room doors. Inside, he (very loudly) exclaimed, "Mommy! You're 1/2 naked!" I managed to try on my potential purchases while he checked out the dressing room. He was very impressed with the bench, and determined it was "just for little boys." I quickly finished dressing to retrieve my curious shopper (he had taken off under the dressing room door,) and went back to find some underwear. I found a box of three and threw it in the cart. "(with a gasp) Mommy! Is this is a video?" Well it was the perfect size and shape box, I guess. After we finished all our shopping at Fred Meyer, we found a line and waited to check-out. Lil Eaglet was quite tired by this time and was using the box of panties as a head rest. As I unloaded my stuff up onto the counter, I realized my cashier was a male teen, probably...17? I smiled inwardly, thinking, "He's going to be thrilled to check me out with all this mess of women's underwear!" As he was ringing everything through, I noticed that none of the bras were ringing up correctly. I mentioned it to him, and he looked real confused and started digging back through the bags to retrieve the bras in question. I made a quip (intending to relieve his embarrassment) that I was sure that was just what he was hoping to do today--dig through women's underwear. "Oh--I don't care..." he said, as he shrugged and tried hard to act very cool about the whole deal. Soon he had such a tangled mess of women's lingerie before him...his face was totally glistening with perspiration....and his embarrassment was very apparent. The funniest thing was that he was trying so hard to act like it wasn't a big deal. Customers were stacking up behind me (both were "older" women, who were truly getting a kick out of the whole thing) and he was pushing buttons, swiping barcodes, getting manager overrides. I had NO idea what I was being charged anymore; I was just trying to hold in my giggles. The poor guy!! To make a long, "had to be there" story short, we finally got out of there, and I had a boatload of sexy little underthings. What a relief--no more frumpy nursing bras!