Cold Hands, Warm Heart

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Nome, Alaska, United States
After getting burned out teaching high school in a tiny Alaskan town, I have moved on to being a child advocate in a small Alaskan town. The struggles are similar, but now I can buy milk at the store.

Sunday, August 29, 2010


I'm not sure when it started to happen. It was so gradual, and so sneaky I never noticed. Yet here I am, sitting in them middle of it, completely confused about how it happened.

No, I'm not talking about the dishes that need to be done, or the exercise I need to start up again. I am fully aware of how those things happened. I'm talking about the dark.

Amy and I are sitting here at 11:45 on a Sunday night, thinking about going to bed, and it is DARK outside. Not just "sunset" but really dark. Like night-time. This is a bit depressing for me. I bet it'll still be dark until 7 or 8 tomorrow morning!

I understand how seasons work. I understand that we are experiencing 6.66 minutes of change every day in the light. That doesn't mean I like it. It also doesn't mean I was paying attention. (I did notice the amount of time we change every day, don't think THAT little piece of information slipped past me.)

Now, it's not like I want to be out running around at midnight. I actually like it dark in my room while I'm sleeping. The dark also encourages the kids to go to bed on time. It's just that with the dark coming earlier and earlier, it means that hibernation time is fast approaching. And I don't like hibernation time.

For those not in the know, hibernation time is just what it sounds like. It's hard to get out of bed, hard to be motivated, and hard to care about anything except crawling back into bed.

Logically, I am also aware of the fact that I currently have more light that Washington, Utah, and Myrtle Beach. For three more weeks. On September 21st, we will all be equal. And the day after that, they will have more light than I do until late March. So for everyone that I gloated over when I had light, and you had been in the dark for hours already (Dad, I'm looking at you here) I'd like to apologize. Sorry for gloating. And please send pictures of the sun, I'm going to miss that guy.

On a completely unrelated note, and for those following the hair saga:

We found a piece that somehow missed the dye. Underneath the purple, this is the color of my hair. The purple will eventually fade. That blonde is just going to have to grow out. Or be dyed again:

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Hair, day 3

For some reason, it was today, on Day 3 of this ridiculous hairdo, that people have started questioning my motives for this hair. The two choices I got were: Are you being fashionable, or are you rebelling.

I was unaware that those were my only two options.

Warren, on the other hand, thinks I look like a blueberry eating seagull pooped on my head. Thanks Warren, thanks.

So, after a couple washes, here is the current look:

And when it's not pulled back:

Monday, August 23, 2010


For her birthday, I bought my little sister a box of hair dye. Not auburn, or dark blonde, but "I'm mad at my parents" blue, green, and red. We never got around to dying anything, because she wasn't sure how well the Pumpkin Patch (aka Home Depot) would take the colors.

While in Anchorage, I decided that I wanted fun color too. After all, I'm an adult. I can do whatever I want with my hair. So I bought:
And it sat on my bathroom counter. While at Unalakleet for inservice, I ran into Ann-Marie, who, for her 30th birthday present gave herself new hair. Literally. She had it dyed black, then had blue and green extensions attached. It looked really good, and I decided to stop waiting around.

Last night, after Amy left, Kiley and I got together for a little hair dying. She was just doing blond highlights, so we put the cap on her and did the little pull through thing. It worked just like it was supposed to.

My hair started out like this:

And then we bleached stripes in it. I would have taken a picture of that, but my laptop was at the school, and my camera has no memory card. (On that note: Amy, have you seen the memory card for my camera?)

Then we dyed the stripes purple. And when I washed it out, I had light pink stripes. So we dyed it again, and wrapped my head in saran wrap. And at 1, I went to bed. 

This morning, I woke up, fully expecting my clear plastic wrap to be off, and my pillow purple (I took the case off, to protect it). I was pleasantly surprised to find it still on, and even happier when I took a shower, and the dye stuck.

So, with no further ado:

And it's not too crazy. And I really like it.  I'm a little concerned when the purple dye starts to wear off, and the trailer park blond streaks start showing up again. I may have to re-dye around Christmas.

Saturday, August 21, 2010


Today, I fixed my chair all by myself with a hammer and two 16-penny nails. And I'm awesome.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Utah Trip

I would, at this time, like to hand out a couple of awards from my Utah trip. I'm sorry I have no pictures, but it would have been hard to explain to the girl behind the counter just why I wanted her picture, after being frustrated with her for five minutes.

Best Gas Station:  The Kicks 66 Superstore in Pocatello, Idaho. Not only did they have the cheapest gas at that exit, but the bathroom was clean, the employees were nice, and the cashier herself chipped in 4 cents so I wouldn't have to walk out of there with 96 cents in my pocket. I hate carrying around 96 cents.

Worst Drive Through: Sorry Layton, but this award goes to you. The Burger King by the freeway not only has a gross excuse for "chicken" but the cashier was incapable of understanding why, for a bill of $6.15, I would hand her a $10 bill, a $1 bill, and a quarter.  She tried to give m the dollar and quarter back. I explained that I'd rather have a $5 and a dime, and she just looked at me like I was nuts. So I told her to put it in the register, and sure enough, it said I should get $5.10 back.  My math skills amazed her.

Best Waitress: Conversely, my best restaurant experience was also in Layton. At the Sizzler over by the mall-thing. Not only was the ordered food good, but the salad bar was well stocked, and our waitress ROCKED!! I cannot, at this point, remember her name. So we'll call her Tiffany (because that might have been it.) Not only did she bring us juice in a sippy cup for Colleen's kid, but she calmly dealt with the morons across the way who wanted her to bring them things from the salad bar. Umm, it's a salad bar. By definition, one should go get their own little soup cup of ranch dressing. She joked with us, cleaned up after our messes (not mine so much as the 3 year olds), and is using this job to pay for college. I can respect that.

Most Confusing Restaurant: Okay Chuck Wagon in Idaho Falls, would you please explain to me why you have cookies with the rolls, deserts, and cold foot table? They all looked like the same kind of cookies to me. Do people care about the heat of their cookies enough that putting them in three different temperature ranges keeps mobs from forming? I just don't get it. Also, to the boy cutting the meat: You don't get paid more if you have meat left at the end of the night.
On the plus side: Thanks to our server, who kept the Mountain Dew coming.

Best accommodations: Yours, of course. How could you ever think I'd give this award to someone else.

Cutest Ultrasound: This great honor has to go one Mrs. Heather Deighton.  I've seen ultrasounds before, and while I can see what I'm supposed to, I never understood all the gushing. Then I saw Heather's. Oh, now I understand. That is one good looking kid, and her fingers are precious.  I felt bad for the  man watching with us who couldn't see anything. Especially since the tech did a FANTASTIC job of finding and labeling things.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Tribal Journeys

Now that four important things have converged, namely my laptop, camera, camera cord, and wireless internet, I am capable of posting some pictures from Canada and Western Washington. (Not the college. I've just been reading a lot of Jonathan Swift lately, and he likes to capitalize things. So I fight the urge, but sometimes I lose.)

This is the group waiting for Christine to park the car, so we can go into the museum. From left: Janelle, Jens (Yents) Jens, Hans-ole, Sara, Pipaluk, and Lars.  Meghann must have wandered off to look at something at this point.

Yeah!! Three dollar breakfast. This was still in Vancouver.

During one of the dances, some girls came looking for partners, so we pointed at Hans-ole, and she drug him out onto the floor. So, like the mature people we are, we laughed at him, and giggled a lot.

And, just for a close up, the adorable Hans-ole. He doesn't speak English, so we pantomimed a lot of stuff.

Jens and Jens waiting for the bus at like 1:30 in the morning. Jens in the back has pulled all his hair over his face, then put his sunglasses back on.

And from behind, Jens climbs a tree at Stanley park. I hear they don't have trees in Ummanaq either.

Janelle, sitting in a funny, funny hand chair.

Sara, trying to pack her bags. It was an adventure in itself.