I guess there is nothing like waiting 1/4 of a year to blog an entry! Where has the time gone?! August 22nd seems like it was yesterday...
Our whereabouts and whatweweredoings for September:
Andrew and I spent the long Labor Day weekend exploring Anchorage and Seward. The drive was beautiful since Alaska's fall was in full swing by then. The highlights of the trip were SHOPPING (think Best Buy, Target, Pier 1, A MALL!), visiting the Hotel Alyeska (very nice 4 star resort nestled in between mountains), exploring the tiny town of Seward and stopping at the Alaska SeaLife Center (lots of rehabilitated sealions, seals, birds, and sea-like creatures such as urchins and starfish). Oh yes, and eating at Arby's too many times.
Quaint downtown Seward...apparently the TV show Northern Exposure was modeled after this Alaskan town
Andrew spent most of September out in the field for a field training exercise and I was keeping busy with teaching, schoolwork, and enjoying the last of the "crisp" days. I enjoyed the USO-sponsored Lt. Dan Band concert (Lt. Dan from Forrest Gump!) with a few friends, shot skeet for the first time (I'm pretty horrible at shooting...), and looked forward to his return!
Our first real snowfall arrived around October 18th. We rushed to put snow tires on Andrew's "put-put" of a car so that he would continue to arrive at his destinations in one piece. I had meant to show a picture of his car this summer but then I never did. In order for both of us to get where we needed to go, we bought a 89' Mazda 626...the kicker is, I haven't learned how to (safely) drive a stick-shift yet so Andrew was the lucky winner of the beauty! Actually he wanted it originally and I was in no position to argue since I knew what my car would be. It is a funny-looking car that moves very slowly and after having this thing for a few months, we've decided to never buy a car from a man who is married to his mail-ordered-bride...No Joke.
As of yesterday, the snow was piling up...
and the sun is quickly setting...3:30 PM
Tomorrow the sun will be up at 9:47 AM and the sun will be down at 3:25 PM. We lose approximately six hours of daylight each day. We will be home for the winter solstice this year (shortest daylight of the year) so I can't complain too much!
It has dipped down to -25 but only about once or twice. As of right now the typical temperatures are between -5 and 20 degrees...not too bad really. We have been having a lot of snow but for some reason it seems to accumulate a lot slower than if we were in PA. The school district has not had a cancellation in 12 years but I'm still hoping this year will break that dry spell.
Trick-or-treat was on a particularly cold night and we had a total of 15 visitors. Mom or Dad pulls up to the front door, the kids run out, ring the bell, collect their treats, and run right back in. I give those parents a lot of credit because not many parents drive their kids around house to house. Since the weather is usually less than ideal, each school holds a Halloween carnival. The kids dress up and play games by each classroom, collect a lot of candy, and make the school hallways very dirty and smelly, especially since it was a wet and cold carnival day this year. I drug Andrew around the hallways and even though he didn't wear a costume he definitely scared a few of the little ones...
Now we are into mid-November and we have been listening to Christmas music ever since October 31st. It was hard to resist because the outdoors looked like a winter wonderland by then. We've decorated our house for Christmas but there is no full-size tree this year, not even a Charlie Brown tree. We decided it would take up too much room in our box-of-a-downstairs so instead we have two tabletop trees. Andrew and I have certainly been homebodies lately and we are enjoying every minute of it!
We are only one week away from our 1st Anniversary! We each have a three-day work week and then we are headed to Anchorage for Thanksgiving...and Black Friday of course! Andrew is just as guilty as me for loving good bargains.
Then, in three short and very busy weeks we are headed back to the East Coast, for the first time together :-) We'll be on a red eye to NYC for the beginning of our visit, then a train to Harrisburg, then a car to Beaver...planes, trains, and automobiles anyone? We both acknowledge that sleep is optional during our visit home because there are so many things we want to do and so many family and friends to see!
For this being my first post in a VERY long time, I think I'll keep it simple and short. Enjoy the Thanksgiving week :-)