Friday, October 31, 2008

Little Redhead Riding Hood

So, after battling the hordes at Value Village we found a costume that Emmy would look absolutely cute in. I think Little Red Riding Hood is a good match for her in part due to her red hair, which may not be red much longer - it's growing in much lighter. Maybe this dress is not as warm as the other costume, but in these temperatures, she wouldn't really be going trick-or-treating outdoors anyway. We were thinking of bringing her to an apartment complex with indoor halls after daycare. But we don't even give her candy yet, so she would probably be bummed out not to enjoy much of it. Now we are thinking we'll just bring her home and carve a pumpkin, which I realized last night we had totally forgotten about. Good thing is, by the time we buy the pumpkin today they should be on sale.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Emmy's Halloween costume debacle

I was so excited to get Emmy the Old Navy Butterfly costume when we were down in Indiana. (this picture is not Emmy - just another cute tot model) Due to of all of the other things we bought, it would not fit in the suitcase. So we mailed it. Big mistake. Halloween is tomorrow, the postman came and went, and no box. One of the boxes we sent up here got returned back to Indiana, the other is floating around the US somewhere, sad and lonely.

So tonight we are going to go shopping to find her a new costume to wear to daycare tomorrow, where it will be an all day party. What will she be? Check back tomorrow to find out!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

From the Photo Vault

The Laktonen girls at Melissa's bachelorette party, 2007

A & J with Halibut, 2004?

Laktonen Girls - what year?

Isiik & Aryaangcuk, 2005

Alaska Women for Obama Video!

This is really positive...Pass it on!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Emmy's first ponytail

She's wearing her business girl jacket to help mommy with her work.

Temperature report: Goldstream Valley

This morning the thermometer reads -15 degrees F. The forecast calls for it to rise to 1 degree in Fairbanks, where Jeremy will be working outside...

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Baked Brie Recipe

This is how I make baked brie...It's pretty easy!
All measurements are approximate, as I don't measure anything.

A brie wheel (a smallish one - about 8 in. across)
1 pre-made pie crust (or make your own pie crust if you are good at it)
2 Tbsp. chopped garlic (I usually use the kind from a jar, but feel free to chop away)
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning (or to taste. And if you have a pestle, grind up some rosemary too. Or come up with your own spice combination - there's no rules here!)
dash salt and pepper
a little milk
Baguette slices or crackers
(This picture is not one of my baked bries, but it will do for now.)

Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl, mix the garlic, olive oil, and seasonings. Score the top of the brie in a cris-cross pattern with a knife (this allows the garlic mixture to penetrate the brie). Spoon the mixture over the top of the brie wheel, leaving a bit of room around the edge. Place the pie crust over the top and carefully fold the edges under the brie in the baking dish of your choice. Don't worry if the crust seems too big or small, as long as it least can be tucked under. If there is a lot of extra crust, cut out some cute shapes to place on top. Use a small knife to cut some nifty pattern or words into the top to vent. Don't go too overboard with your designs though, as too many holes can cause the whole thing to crack open - this has happened to me. Bake for a half hour or so, until the crust is nice and browned. You may want to let it sit for a few minutes after it is done, as it will be like molten lava inside... tasty molten lava. Serve with the baguette slices or crackers.

Final Political Post before Election??

I hope this is the last political post I will need to do in this election. Jeremy cringes when I talk politics, even though we are on the same page in our beliefs. He just doesn't want to alienate anyone.

Speaking of alienating people, Last night a relative of ours sent us a text message with Barack Obama's photograph. It said, in essence that the Book of Revelations has predicted that the Antichrist will be a man in his 40s who is a MUSLIM, who will draw people to him and then bring about the END. It then encouraged us to forward this message to as many people as we know. The person who sent the message to us is registered Democrat! I cannot even describe on how many levels this kind of smear campaign upsets me. Not that being Muslim is bad, but Obama is a Christian! And in my limited knowledge of Christianity, he seems to embody the concern for the poor, sick, and elderly that is supposed to be at the center of Christian belief.

Now, I know we all have different political beliefs. I respect that. But I respect those who support McCain-Palin for their POLICIES, and actually know what those policies are, than those who are voting for McCain-Palin because of their hatred and fear of others. So, if you have thought about it, and you really think that voting Republican will be the best thing for your family, I respect that completely, and so would Obama.

This world is in crisis and we need to work together!

Temperature in the Goldstream Valley

This morning our thermometer reads -20 degrees fahrenheit. I remember when we got here last January -20 was a normal day. It wasn't really cold until we hit 30 or 40 below. The neighbors here say it hit 60 below on our street. We've got a lot to look forward to!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Caqiq "Steampunk?"

I have noticed a fashion trend on my numerous adventures into the handmade world of called "steampunk."

While difficult to define exactly, steampunk has to do with turn-of-the-century victorian fashion, industrial gears, leather and buckles. I especially love all of the jewelry made from old watches, vintage beads, and found metal objects. There is also a connection between steampunk and Stephenie Meyer's Twilight series, which has brought about a craze in vampire fashion.

There is a very useful and interesting article about the steampunk trend here. You can click on any of these pictures to take you directly to the etsy shop....Unfortunately, here in AK I have little opportunity to publicly wear corsets, and the lace cuffs would likely not look right under my down puffy coat I am sporting, now that winter has hit us hard....So, I may have to settle for the jewelry until next summer!

Friends we saw on our travels

Emmy and I have been very busy. In addition to going to work and the Qik meeting, the day before we left Kodiak, Emmy and I went over to Rachel Kane's for play date with Abby. Then I visited Melissa, Ty, and their new baby, interviewed Susan Malutin about the language revitalization movement, and went out to see Gary Barnes and Family at the Great Alaska Bean Company to stock up on fresh roasted coffee.

Yesterday was our trip back to Fairbanks. In Anchorage I got a 6 hour layover so we could visit with Grandpa Jerry and meet our third cousin Chris. We went out to Gwennie's for a huge breakfast, swung by the Alaska Native Heritage Center, and had lunch with LaRita at the Alaska Native Medical Center. Dad dropped his art off at the Dena'ina Center where he will be having his art table for the next few days during AFN. We drove back across town to get La Rita's cell phone from her house, and then realized that we left Emmy's stroller on the sidewalk outside of the Dena'ina Center when we were offloading. So we hurried back and it was still there!

Then Dad dropped me off at the Airport, where I discovered that I lost my license some time during that first flight from Kodiak. I had only my UAF ID, and was happy to undergo an "additional screening" just so that they would let me continue up to Fairbanks. As I was checking in, Shelly ran up to say hi. She and her husband Ryan were on their way to Kodiak where they are moving, but they had missed their flight. Looks like I was not the only one having travel drama! When Emmy and I went through security we both had to be fully patted down and my bags all had to be fully searched. Poor Emmy could not stand with her arms out and her feet in those big footprints, so they patted her down while she laid on the floor. It was all a bit overboard if you ask me, but then again, I was traveling without legal ID.

And then, I knew Jacoby and my niece Ravenna were coming in at about the same time I was boarding, so I stood outside their gate and surprised them. Emmy and Ravenna got to see eachother before we got on the plane to Fairbanks. What a Day! We were so happy to see Jeremy when we got off that last flight :-)

Friday, October 17, 2008

Sun'amen Emmy-llu agciqukuk - Emmy and I are going to Kodiak

Unuami Guangkunuk Sun'amen tengciqukuk.
Angiciqukuk Fairbanks-men Pingayiinmi.

In the morning the two of us are flying to Kodiak.
We are returning to Fairbanks on Wednesday.

Emmy helps on the computer.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

What is the Handmade Pledge?

You may see the "I took the Handmade pledge" button on my side bar, and wonder what I mean by it. Well, for me, it means that I will be purchasing all hand made gifts for people for the Holidays this year. So many years I have felt embarrassed giving people things that I am sure they recognized from the shelves of ___ Mart,and knowing that they probably won't really enjoy it, because it is not unique, not quality, and not really useful. In addition, it is sad to celebrate a family holiday with a gift that was likely made by a child or a poorly paid, hungry worker in a third world country.

In the past I felt like there were few options for me to give handmade gifts, because I thought I could not afford them. But now, in addition to local Christmas bazaars and markets, I have the web site, where there are thousands upon thousands of shops that are searchable, and most things are very affordable. They also have vintage and materials sections if you like to make things yourself. You can get things handmade from sellers in the same town, or anywhere in the world! It is so cool, and I swear they are not paying me to say this!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Songs used without Permission

What is with all of the songs being used by the McCain Campaign without permission? I can't believe how many musicians are angry and offended that they are being used by candidates they do not support! The list goes on and on of artists complaining that their songs were used at rallies and ads without permission or royalties being paid. In addition to the most recent protest from Bon Jovi:

Just yesterday, Survivor joined the bashing bandwagon, requesting that the McCain-Palin campaign stop playing the band's hit Rocky theme, "Eye of the Tiger," for appearances by John McCain; last week, the Foo Fighters issued a terse statement demanding that the GOP contender refrain from using "My Hero."

Last month, Heart issued a cease-and-desist notice to the campaign after their hit "Barracuda" was twice used at Palin's campaign theme, including being used at the Republican National Convention. In August, Van Halen groused about "Right Now" being used at rallies, while John Mellencamp protested the lifting of "Pink Houses" and "Our Country." Jackson Browne even filed a copyright infringement suit against McCain and the Republican National Committee for using his biggest hit, "Running on Empty," in campaign ads. [original source]

Neighbor's House Burns

Shortly after returning from dinner last night with Justin and Ashley (who watched our dogs on our recent trip) we noticed that the house across the field was on fire. We called the fire department who said they were on their way, but it seemed like an eternity until they got there. The owner wasn't home - he actually is rarely in town, but I had noticed his smokestack smoking earlier in the day. After remaining mostly confined to an addition, the fire then spread to the rest of the house. The structure is still standing but I am pretty sure it is a total loss. We don't know the owner but I feel so bad for him. I don't even know where he slept last night, and it was below zero here in the Goldstream Valley.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Palin Ethics Troopergate report...her response!

Only Palin could take a report finding her guilty of ethics violations and abuse of power and say that it found her innocent and vindicated.
Page 8, Finding Number One of the report says: "I find that Governor Sarah Palin abused her power by violating Alaska Statute 39.52.110(a) of the Alaska Executive Branch Ethics Act."
She is truly one of a kind. Since I don't want to go on and on about it, you can read more from the Anchorage Daily News or from Alaska Real's blog.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Pictures of Melody without a hat

I can't wait to meet my cute new niece! I think she looks a lot like Melissa. Here are a few more pictures they sent so we can evaluate how much hair she actually has...Emmy, Ravenna and Melody are all so differently colored, they are going to be like the United Nations of cousins!

Back to Fairbanks...barely

We made it back to Fairbanks at 2 am this morning, after nearly 24 punishing hours of travel. It is so nice to be home, even though it was great to see so many of our wonderful friends and family when we were down South.

Here are some pictures to get us updated...
Emmy and Grandma Sizemore//Us at the Sizemore house :-)

Joe, Jeremy & Terry David Counceller

Jeremy and Emmy with Bobbi Jo McIntyre

Jeremy & Matty//Dave & Jeremy

Emmy & the Bauer twins//Horse, Emmy & Jeremy

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Melody #2

I hear Melissa claims Melody has more hair than Emmy does right now. But in every picture she is wearing a hat. Come on, let's see some proof! :-)

Melody my new Niece!!

After an anxious day down here in Connersville I got word Melody was born to my sister Melissa and her husband Ty. I don't know much besides she was 8 lbs. and has brown hair. She apparently had a bit of fluid in her lungs when she was born and they were thinking of sending her up to Anchorage, but she stabilized and is doing much better. I realize I don't even know her middle name, so I will have to do another post when I have more info.

As for us, we are off to Cincinnatti this morning for Wade and Gertrude's wedding. Then we fly out of there tomorrow morning back to the Last Frontier...

Friday, October 10, 2008

SNL and the Election

Well, since we have been in Indiana I have spent a lot of time catching up on my TV watching. It has been mostly mind-numbing, with a few moments of dispair thrown in. I was particularly upset with the negative tone the election is taking, especially by the McCain-Palin ticket. I am astounded that they would be okay with it when they rile up the crouds to the point that someone yells "kill him" (possibly about Obama) and at another rally, some people heckled an African-American videographer. How could you allow things to get so out of hand at your own rally without giving people the impression that you support such behavior? It is a small consolation that these are people who long ago decided on who they would be voting for, so the hatemongering is only making them more empassioned about how much they despise people different than themselves. The focus away from important issues like the economy is not swaying any undecided voters to vote Republican. We are headed for some rough times and we need to work together a lot better than this if we are going to come through.

The one spot of light in all this has been the hilarious Saturday Night Live skits spoofing the election. the Sarah Palin impression by Tina Fey of course has been funny, but the re-enactment of the town hall style debate they showed last night was also great. It was almost as funny as the real one, especially when Tom Brokaw was getting all mad about the candidates talking too long, and then trying to read his teleprompter and both Obama and McCain were standing in his way. Ha!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

In Tennessee

We are currently at Jeremy's Mom and Stepdad's house in Tennessee. It is HOT! Emmy is having the time of her life in the play room filled with toys. I am a bit wilted but enjoying myself. We went out to the Olive Garden last night. my FAVORITE chain restaurant. Tomorrow we head back to Indiana to stay with Jeremy's Dad.

We are all waiting to see when Melissa goes into labor. It could be any time so it is hard to be so far away. I can't wait to meet little Melody!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Cute Animal babies

Awwwww. In need of something happy to report, I have resorted to this monkey baby. That mama really loves her baby. In other baby-related news, my sister Melissa is going to have her first baby, probably within a week. If she were to email me the 4-D ultrasound pictures she got the other day they would be up on my blog by now. So instead, you get this baby monkey.

"A newborn Javan Lutung, also known as Javan Langur, is embraced by its mother, Smirre, in the Budapest Zoo in Hungary. The Javan Lutung baby, born Aug. 18, was the first of its kind to be born in Hungary."