Showing posts from November, 2013

Thanksgiving in Alaska (Year Two)

Cody and I had only been living in Alaska for three weeks at this time last year.  Thanksgiving was a VERY different affair.  This was the first year that either of us had ever been away from our families for the holidays.  Admittedly, we both had a tough time with the holidays last year.  We still had a blast exploring and making new traditions, but we were homesick.  We spent most of Thanksgiving 2012 at our apartment, just the two of us.  We cooked, and ate, and watched football.  But, we also drove up to Eaglecrest Ski Area and did a little hiking before we tucked into our big meal.  It was just the two of us, we made the most of it, and we had a wonderful time.

This year was a much more social affair.  Cody and I were invited to multiple Thanksgivings! We spent the earlier part of the day with two of our good friends (parents of one of my students) and their families.  It was such a nice time and very family-oriented.  We ate food, played games (hide-and-seek with the little ones…

Alaskan Snow Day!

Juneau was blanketed with 13inches of snow on Thursday.  I looked out my front door and immediately thought, "uh-oh."  The snow was DEEP and very wet.  Me, being a midwesterner, figured this would mean the closure of JSD (Juneau School District) but I was sadly mistaken.  Schools in Alaska don't close unless they absolutely have to.  Their answer to the snow…chain-up your tires, slap some spikes on your boots, and enjoy the weather!

Sadly, the following day it warmed up to a toasty 40° and most of the snow melted (yuck).  This also meant that I didn't manage to get a single picture of our deep, wet snowfall.  The temperatures cooled back off over the weekend though and we found ourselves with a couple fresh inches of powder.  I did manage to take a few pictures of our lesser snowfall, which is much less impressive but still pretty.

On another snowy note, Juneau's own Eaglecrest Ski Area is competing for a top spot in Powder Magazine's Ski Town Throwdown.  If…

Snow Is Coming...

That's right folks, snow is officially headed our way! Autumn was unusually long and warm for SE Alaska.  I didn't even break out my winter coat until last week.  But, now we are in for it.  Temperatures are supposed to get down into the single digits this week and snow is predicted almost every day.

Thankfully, Cody and I got the snow tires put back on the cars this weekend (woo-hoo for studs).  Here in Juneau we run studded tires during the winter.  Legally, you can run them from September-April (typical times of the year when it is snowing).  We were lucky to keep them off of the cars until November this year! Lots of other "winter prep" is happening at our house this weekend.  We have to winterize the windows and doors, find our snow shovel (I am hoping its buried in the shed), and do any last minute outdoor cleaning.  Busy, busy!

I'll leave you all with this pretty picture I snapped on Friday night.  Cody and I were outside walking the dog when the moon popp…

Northern Lights & Tasty Meals

This weekend in Juneau was a MUCH needed holiday weekend.  Parent-teacher conferences demanded most of my attention last week, and I still have a couple to wrap-up tomorrow.  But, I felt so excited after wrapping up (most) conferences on Friday afternoon that I treated myself to a few tasty treats.

Yup, that's a strawberry velvet cupcake….heavenly.  And, I paired it with a little peppermint tea.  Both were bought at a couple of my favorite local hotspots.  It was an amazing way to kickstart my weekend.

The most exciting part of our weekend took place on Friday and Saturday nights….the Northern Lights were visible!!  Sadly, I don't have picture proof but we did get to see them faintly.  They were incredibly bright on Friday night and you can check them out here, on local artist Elise Tomlinson's Facebook page.  Keep in mind that the harbor that she pictures is only about three miles from my front door.  Whoa.

I snapped this picture at sunset one evening this weekend.  Not …

Sunrise, Sunrise

Our mornings and evenings have been surprisingly clear these last couple of weeks.  That's not to say that it hasn't still dumped rain on us every single day (because it has).  But, we've been gifted with some pretty beautiful skies.  I've noticed the clear skies mostly around sunrise and sunset, which is now happening at 7:30am and 3:50pm.  It's only a matter of time before we're down to a whopping six hours of daylight.  Woo-hoo.

Rising and setting times for the SunLength of daySolar noonDate

Things To Do In Juneau: Eaglecrest Ski Area

One of Cody and I's favorite things to in Juneau is drive up to Eaglecrest Ski Area.  It's only a 7-10minute drive from our house, which is incredibly convenient.  Once the snow hits, this area is open for skiing (my preference) and snowboarding (Cody's preference).  There are tons of "alpine trails" for your winter sport enjoyment during the cold season.  Prices are expensive but that's pretty typical for skiing and snowboarding.  During the summer, Eaglecrest is a popular hiking spot and when the berries start coming in it is the best place to go picking (seriously-DELICIOUS blueberries).  I'd highly recommend a trip up to this beautiful place at any time of the year.  You can check out more about it here.

Cody and I headed up to Eaglecrest this weekend for a hike and we snapped some pictures.  The views were spectacular! The temperature kept us from hiking/exploring for too long though.  It was in the upper 20's and neither of us had busted out ou…