Friday, May 28, 2010

Doily daze...

I bet you thought my doily days were done, didn't you!

Well, think again...
I just haven't posted any the past couple of weeks.



This is my first attempt at filet crochet. I enjoyed the outcome but found the process a little tedious. If I had been able to enlarge the pattern a bit and use a highlighter to mark out finished rows I probably would have found it a little more enjoyable. The mint green is a fun spring color.

This is Arabella. I had a lot of fun with this pattern and enjoy the process as well as the end product immensely. I used DMC Cebelia crochet cotton for this and just love everything about it from the color to the feel. I enjoyed it so much that...

I had to make some coasters to go with it.
I have hand washed every one of the doilies and coasters now and they will be ready to travel clean and fresh. After hand washing and blocking I also understand now why you should do this instead of ironing them. They turn out fluffier, the parts that need to be turned get turned, and it just has a nicer overall effect. I would highly recommend this method versus the washing and ironing route.

I will enjoy being able to use these when I catch up with my dishes in a couple of weeks.  

We are off to Valdez tomorrow on a quest to peruse a glacier up close and personal.

Have a safe weekend!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010


Today we are on our way to view the highest mountain peak in north America...  

Mt. McKinley, in Denali National Park.

As we were headed there cars were stopped on the side of the road looking at...

 this moose just off the road. 

You have to be careful around these animals as they can be dangerous, they are not as docile as deer, but this one was peacefully grazing.


We're here!

There is a beautiful visitor's center with nice wildlife displays.

Can you see Mt. McKinley in the background? Almost looks like a cloud!


Traveling further into the park we could not believe we saw...

Grizzly bears!!!! Okay, now we've really seen Alaska.

A sweet little bird keeping watch.

Beauty in the park. Not many trees up this high.

Sweet little bird.

Look at the peaceful river.

The water was as clear as could be!

Daughter and Little Companion.

So glad I was able to see this all!

Time to head back.


Okay, time for a late lunch.  We're going to have to check this out!

What do you think, would you try it? Ha! Well let's get to gettin then!


I always think it's fun to get a little info on the place and what better place than the back of the menu!

The moose rack was shot by the owner's father.

Okay, they did have great hamburgers but the distinction of best would still have to go to the Alaskan Steakhouse in Delta as far as we were concerned.

What a day. Moose, grizzly, birds, fabulous scenery, wonderful company, and in the end a great burger.

Oh ya, what a day!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Eldorado Gold Mine, Fox Alaska

The weather has warmed up and we are in Alaska, so naturally we must go panning for gold!

The Eldorado Gold Mine.

Once there we entered the train station and then boarded the narrow gauge train for the mine. Our order of entrance into the train was as follows: Little Companion, me, sweet daughter, and two random men (you will see why this is important later in my story). 

Our conductor was a' singing and a' playing along the way. 

Chug, chug...
Little Companion and I were snapping pictures hugging, really not paying much attention to anyone else on the train.  Here we are about to enter a permafrost tunnel. 

Once inside we were given a little talk about permafrost and the techniques used to mine under this condition.
Most gold miners have not succeeded in striking it rich. 

More on the mine operation...

On up the track to our destination.

At this point we were given some more information on the mining operation by the mine owner. She was very encouraging to the young ladies to not be afraid to pursue their dreams, even if that meant learning to use a backhoe.

They dumped the pay dirt and then let the water go.

Most of the nuggets are found at the very beginning. Probably why the owner is in that spot!

We were shown the panning process. This little lady will be headed off to the Philippines, at the end of the summer, to be a midwife. She is from here and has worked here for 4 seasons.

We were each given a little sack of pay dirt and off to the panning stations we went. 

Look, there's my little girl!

The three of us combined what we found and off we went to the...
weigh station.

Daughter had our gold split into two necklaces and Little Companion and I were each given one. The gold we found was 22 karat and was worth about $72. That's fun!

Cookies, coffee, and hot chocolate were available as we waited for the necklaces.
Look, Little Companion and my sweet daughter are loaded up and ready to head back to the station. 

Here is where the plot thickens. 

If you remember, I gave the order of seating earlier. Notice this is not the same order. The order is now:  Little Companion, sweet daughter, me, and the same two random guys. We had switched cars and were now in the third car back instead of the second with many empty seats behind us, and yet there we were 4 adults and one Little Companion all jammed into this seat. 

Evidently Little Companion and I had missed something on the way out. 

Come to find out these are two "random" wealthy EgyptiansOne lives here and the other was his brother visiting from Egypt. One of the men had been talking to my daughter the whole way to the mine. They were very well dressed and groomed. Amazingly enough we were also offered the information that he was single, well not me really, I don't believe he ever took his eyes off my daughter. 

There I was...
between Jackie O and Ari.

Well, he was very nice and held the door for all of us.  We waved goodbye as we slid into our rental car and he and his brother got into their Mercedes.

We had a wonderful time and on the way back we finally saw a moose!
What a way to end the day.

Friday, May 21, 2010

First week of summer

Well the first week of summer break is coming to an end.

 Boy did we have some fun!

We visited the Alaska Bird Observatory, Little Companion had never been inside, and then we walked the Chickadee Loop Trail again.

No snow and ice this time and we were able to be much quieter! 
I have just fallen in love with these trees! I believe them to be white birch. The bark has been used for so many things. These trees rattle in the winter wind and sound like a rain stick at times.  On one of our drives we saw buckets attached as they were tapping them for syrup. Love these trees!

Want to know a secret? See how Little Companion is clutching her jacket? Ya, well it's about 75 degrees out, sunny, and just plain beautiful. There are, however, mosquitoes nearly the size of small planes out here and we are both a little citified and don't have on bug repellent, I was also wearing a jacket!

Down the trail we went loving every minute!

We have also been to Creamer's Field. Many cranes adorned the field this day!
Little Companion received a camera in the mail the other day (we wish we knew who sent it) and was busy snapping pictures.

Now as she was snapping, I was snapping her because to tell you the truth she was just a tad bit cuter than the birds!
Do you see the little robin she is trying to capture on film? He actually held still enough for her to get a picture!

We also hit the park for some running and general dandelion picking.

We went and saw Letters to Juliet on Thursday. It was a fun movie for a grandma and her granddaughter to see. 

We like to do a bit of reading, writing, and arithmetic in the early morning and then head out to snag some fun afterward.

We will be headed out in just 2 short weeks so we are trying to fit as much in as possible before we leave this beautiful country!

Have a wonderful weekend!