Thursday, January 27, 2011

T-3.5 weeks

Till my fate is in the hands of anonymous graders. dear god, please let everyone else take out the bottom of the curve. while i wring my hands in distress over the differences between LLC and LLPs....please enjoy my 12 week old.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


i was busy reading facebook, rueing the thunder-snow the east coast is getting. apparently it has taken over the 1-95 corridor from DC to Baltimore. anyways, i was muttering to myself about how i wanted snow, not just cold, when i finally looked up from the mound of evidence i'm perched upon to discover it is in fact snowing. farwell green eyed jealousy monster--alaska came through.

and so all was right again in the world. since it wasn't yesterday when it was raining here and snowing in nashville.

the snow here always amazes me. the flakes are from tiny to the size of half dollars drifting across the sky. snow always makes me calm--mutes the world and lets it breathe with deep breaths. it is indiscriminate--landing with the same self-righteousness on post, tree, snowbank, car and puppy alike.

Monday, January 24, 2011

it's warmer here than NYC

i figure i won't be able to say that much, so i ought to take advantage of it. we went for a couple walks over the weekend with Neah. We are trying to get her more exercise to decrease her desire to eat shoes. i like to think it's working. It also gave me a chance to take some pictures of the beautiful scenery. We are always coming across views and saying that we wished we had the camera. this particular picture was taken along the Campbell Creek Trail. There's an entrance to the trail quite close to our house...lots of lovely little bridges crossing over the creek. These pictures were both taken from this little outlook bridge.... where i guess when it's warm the salmon go to spawn. According to the sign, there are four different kinds of salmon that you can see from the lookout. It is probably just less than a mile from the trail parking lot to the lookout thing. The first day it was warmer and we got an earlier start...we made it about twice the distance of the second before Neah's paws started getting cold.

i never really imagined going for walks in sub freezing weather. it's not so bad. i like it better when it's snowing for sure. Aside from that, not so much is new. There were these lovely ice sculptures in a park downtown that Adam and i went to look at on my birthday. My favorite was an enormous jaguar kind of creature....although there were two bear siblings with touching noses that were pretty dope. Some of the sculptures were so detailed. it is a lovely art....which clearly takes more precision and patience than i could ever muster. On principle--here are your cute Neah pics (post running like a banshee, neah, and trying to train neah).

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

i got an alaska driver's license.

It was a much more involved process than any of the other's i've been through. This is the fourth state i've acquired a license in and the only one that wanted my social security card. Bummer. haven't seen that sucker in a couple of decades. Enter unforseen trip to the social security administration. Aaaand, i almost failed the DMV test. There are like 8 questions about alcohol related things that i just honestly have no clue about...nor do i need to.

Couple of quick stories. First, today it is snowing for the first time in almost a month. I finally noticed the strangest thing, but a reassuring thing. The snow blows across the road the same way the sand used to blow across the roads on the Outer Banks in NC. It makes misty sorts of patterns--beautiful, but totally obliterates any kind of lane demarcation--of which there isn't much to start with up here. That all has nothing to do with how cute my dog is.
Random cute Neah picture
Second, i'm a genius. Our door--as previously mentioned like 8 times--gets iced on the inside. As of yesterday, we realized it was time to vaccuum and it was in outside storage. The entire thing was frozen shut. Nevertheless, the door HAD to come open. Adam wanted to use a hairdryer. I wanted to chisel that *&^% out. We started with Adam's way--epic fail--when we realized that the water it was creating would just refreeze, making the problem considerably worse. Here's the chisel adventure--I'm about half way done. Score one for Mar.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Professional Wedding Photos

We got the start of our professional wedding photos today...I'll post them when the DVDs come, but until then here's the link to our photographer, Daniel Sheehan's Blog... I want to tell you all how much I loved working with him. He caught every moment perfectly.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

really really cold outside, but warm in the house!

Cold means 0F or -18C. It was -9F last night, which i think is like -21 or 22 C? However, it's still warm in here....warm fuzzies, heart full kinda warm in the house.

requisite cute Neah sleeping photo

First, the set up--a note about Anchorage TV and the weather. All news stations look like they film in community colleges. There's a blue backdrop, some big screen tvs that run illegible ads for the stations' websites with various strange pictures that bear no relation to whatever they are talking about. They have three fixed cameras that jump around the blue screened area to individuals standing in front of another flatscreen. Yeah, when things are video--it's powerpoint. Painful stuff. But the really painful stuff is the "forecast" which is never farther than one day in advance....the last forecast i heard (mind you, it was like 17F (-9C) when it was said) went like this. "It's gonna be cold tomorow."

I can hear what you are thinking already. Cold, huh? Never coulda guessed that. Ah my dears, cold has a whole new meaning here. It means, single digits and negatives in F. It means when you open the front door and massive version of the dragon breath when you breath out in cold weather happens and there's a cloud of steam. It means even wonder-dog doesn't want to play in the snow. In fact, she had to be carried home from her last walk because her paws were too cold. (collective awwww. Thanks.) Here's what cold looks like inside the house. It looks like your husband breaking the doorhandle because the door (and the screws in the door) froze shut and the screws snapped. Of course, husband will tell you it's because his muscles are made of steel.


These are inside our house--which stays at 72.

So you have to find ways to stay warm. We had two new ways this week.
1. The Bradens.
Dia and Jake came over to be our first house guests :) Dia made an incredible apple pie from scratch and yummy brownies. She also brought some beautiful orange roses that are starting to open. Jake and Adam talked philosophy, we played some Kinect and Neah tried to learn to be social. She came around eventually, but we clearly need to get her our more often.

It was great to feel like we were starting to settle in a little more, have company, etc :)

2. Full Circle Farms
We got our first box of yummy veggies. Fruit and veggies here are very expensive and not really tasty. So we opted for getting every other week deliveries of veggies to devour. We made a yummy Kale and Chicken stew, a delicious salad last night, and i am working on something for the parsnips this evening :)
Recipie contributions are of course welcome.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Neighborhood Moose Watch

Last night Adam came in and said there was evidence of a moose outside. I went onto moose watch. I was like the crazy neighbor from neighborhood watch who peers eerily out the window, eyes freakishly scanning back and forth in seach of any movement. Alas. nothing. I was paranoid at 630....standing outside, looking for steaming nostrils amongst the trees. Moose do not like dogs. How close could i keep Neah so that if i had to grab her to save her from the hooves of terror, i could?? If anyone needed evidence the Bar exam makes for crazy people, we have case in point.

Then, this morning at 10am i found le moose. It was far enough away, the end of our driveway, that it didn't see me before i wrangled little miss i-eat-only-carpet back up the stairs. I went out with the camera but it had vanished. Then, it reappeared. Oh boy. evidence of a moose. a wild manical animal tat was no doubt going to eat me and the dog. Or ignore us both, but definitely the first because what kind of story would it be if there weren't death and demise.

Anyways. I thought it was gone. I resumed my freakish neighborhood-moose-watch. Finally my keen exray eyes located moose. She was lying just on the other side of these trees on the right in the pic above. Hmmm. Close enough to get a picture (20 feet or so), too wooded to get a great one. And some little random bird was hopping around chirping at her. Clearly, the bird hadn't seen the hooves.

Point is. Moosey is in the middle in all these shots.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


(Click to make bigger)
**Insert your own hoarfrost joke here** 

Not to be mistaken with horcruxes, although, i am sure there's some relation to be made seeing as how hoarfrost forms out of the mist in the air--trapping it in a solid crystalline form and horcruxes trap the psuedo-misty (formless) soul into a solid form. Ok. clearly too much harry potter to make my brain stop running over tort elements.

It's really beautiful stuff...I wish i had gotten pictures of it earlier when i was out with wonderdog, but these late afternoon ones will have to suffice. Here's what Alaskans were saying about hoarfrost in the late 70s. Surprisingly, not much different than today.

We have had a lot of fog lately...thick fog, like San Fran fog. Thing is it is also a whopping single digits overnight and in the teens most of the the condensation sticks...forming intricate patterns and detailing ever branch and leaf rather than blanketing them like the snow does :)

Friday, January 7, 2011

where o where did the snow go?

i arrived in alaska to blistering, biting cold. like 4F. my parka holds up like a champ and aside from needing to own more tights, 4F in AK isn't nearly as cold as i thought it would be. This is the view from the kitchen window. It was a white wonderland of coldness. It would only snow at night, where i couldn't delight in the falling of the the powder.

My singular trek out each day to the mailbox involved bundling myself up and rueing the fact that i didn't have a full head covering--my nose hairs were freezing within give or take five breaths of the front door. It's a very strange sensation really--the nose hair freezing thing--like your whole body tells you all at once that little humans were not cut out for this because (at least most of the female population) doesn't have fur or hair to cover and protect the nose!

You get the idea. Cold. Here are a few more of the cold pictures:
Including one of the sliding door freezing shut from the inside.
door frozen from inside
plowing the drive
parking lot at 11am
Adam and i were feeling a little alone in the world and decided that maybe we should get a cat. We spent a whole day cat shopping--mostly at adoption centers. Adam fell in love with this huge gray furball named Emma. And all i heard for hours was (in rapid soft hinting tones) "Emma the cat". As we ate pizza at Moose's Tooth and ran through the pros and cons, we started talking pros and cons of dogs--and timing issues.  We were pretty sure there wasn't actually an Australian Shepherd breeder up here (we were pretty particular about the kind of dog we wanted). But, some digging turned up one--with a current litter of pups ready to go home. The breeder brought the last puppy in to meet us. She was the first to get out of the crate and is brilliantly smart. She has ginormous paws and is very cuddly.  We couldn't part with her.  So, here's our baby girl: Neah (named after Neah Bay on the far tip of Washington). Click to make pictures bigger :)


she tied herself up with her leash.


the battle for the squeeky skunk.