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.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

New house, new friends, new couch.

I will not start this post with an apology for not writing in a year. This is mostly because I've checked my blog list, and most of the people I follow haven't either. So let's do a quick wrap-up of what has happened since January.

We got the house! The paperwork all went through, the interest rate was agreeable, and one of the nice parts is that it came mostly furnished. We've since bought new living room furniture, a new mattress for me, and a piano (the piano was free, getting it to my house was not).

An amazing man is renting my cabin. His name is Ian, and before he moved in, he was living in a house he built himself on West Beach with the other gold miners.

My cabin was not entirely suitable for human habitation, so we cut a deal where he would fix it up in exchange for a reduced rent. Here is what he did, (along with Scott, when he got here):

-Patched and painted
-Tore out the broken cabinets and installed new shelves
-Tore out the carpet (which Scott said smelled like a 70's porno) and put in new carpet/linoleum.
-Hooked up the stove/oven that Dad shipped up on the truck
-Moved furniture, including the fridge out of the shed, the couch out of the house, and the mattresses from the UPS truck.
-Got the water turned back on, and fixed all the pipes that had burst during the freeze.

During the remodel, they had no running water, so laundry, showers, and flushing all happened at my house. It was sort of like summer camp for them. We had the girl bathroom upstairs and the boy bathroom downstairs. The water is turned on now, and it's a nice little cabin, and the boys seem happy there. What they do not have, however, is internet. So they still have to stop in to check e-mail and go on Facebook.

For a while, we had a delineation, boys in the dining room, girls in the living room. Lately, we've gotten a bit more mixed, especially if we're watching Pitch Perfect, Star Trek, or Easy A in the living room. It's nice. It's cozy, it's family.

The job is still going well. I'm a lot more comfortable in it than I was. Our CAC educator and interviewer is getting super-pregnant, and will be taking her leave sometime in late September. I think we'll be able to carry on without her for a couple months. Not as well, of course, but carry on nonetheless.

Erin Forton had her baby, which means the cat will go back to her sometime this week or next, so that's exciting for me. Daphne has already admitted that she'll miss the cat, but it will be nice to walk into the back door and not smell the litter box. Additionally, Ian has been out of town for about a week, and will be out for another week, so we've got Bullseye the dog living at the house right now. He's more fun than the cat. He does tricks, enjoys being pet, and likes to snuggle for extended periods of time. He also likes going for rides in the car, which the cat does not. He and Daphne have to fight over the window seat in the car. Daphne doesn't like sitting in the middle, because there's not enough room for her feet. Bullseye doesn't like sitting in the middle, because he can't stick his head out the window.

Of course, driving around with the windows down will soon be a thing of the past. There was frost on the truck window when I woke up yesterday. Not cool, Alaska. Not cool. Theoretically, it's still supposed to be summer. I just kept reminding myself, over the summer, that I shouldn't complain about the heat, because I'd miss it when it left. We may get a couple of warm days later, but it's not looking good.

I am happy, content, and cheerful in my current situation, and that's a combination I've been looking forward to for a while.


  1. Hi Colleen! So glad to hear everything is going well for you! I love reading your blog! If you ever need a place to stay in Anchorage, you are welcome to stay with us! We have a snuggly cat & 2 always fun of energy, but loving kids to entertain you! Haha!

  2. And how does Scott know what 70's porno smells like???