Saturday, November 27, 2010

Amongst the Trees


This Thanksgiving was spent in Elim, Alaska with my brother John.  We were thankful to have made the two flights from Brevig to Nome and Nome to Elim in time for Thanksgiving festivities and some quality time with Johnny.  

Thanksgiving morning, we took some time to hike around town in search of some good sledding hills.  We found a couple good spots and had some pretty exciting rides.  Sledding: the perfect pre-dinner activity.

As in Brevig, Elim hosts a village-wide feast in the school gymnasium.  It reminded me a lot of Brevig feasts minus the reindeer stew, personally one of my favorites.  However, Elim amazingly had huge containers of watermelon, a perfect treat for ending the traditional Thanksgiving meal.  I'm not a huge fan of pie as desert, pie is better left for breakfast in my opinion.  Watermelon however, was very light and refreshing.  The feast experience was very nice and we were able to chat with a few folks from around town that we have met over the years. 

Friday, shortly after sunrise (around noon), we went for a snow machine ride through the woods.  As you can see, the major difference between Brevig and Elim is TREES!  How exciting to be in the forest, if only for a little while.  Part of our ride was actually on the official Iditarod trail.  C.O. and I have a dream of one day taking our children on a snowmobile trip from Nome to Anchorage along this very trail.  That's a long way off however as it is probably best if we wait until their teenage years for such a journey.

 The main goal of our outing was to find a Christmas tree for our home this holiday season.  What a treat it will be, to have a real pine tree to decorate (and smell)!  We will be taking our Christmas tree wrapped up in a tarp as luggage tomorrow on the plane.  That will be a first for me.

Harold convinced us that he needed a smaller tree of his own.
 We obliged.
There's about 40 rings there.
Though the woods are reminiscent of Minnesota,
the trees here have to work a lot harder at survival.
Happy Belated Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Winter's Here

Hard to imagine that just a few days ago, the ocean looked like this.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Harold Counts to 10 in Inupiaq

Inupiaq 1-10 (more or less) from AnnMarie Rudstrom on Vimeo.

I think he missed a couple there but he's close.  They are such big words coming out of a little person!  As you can hear, many Inupiaq words are a mouthful.  In school, Harold practices counting to ten, color names and a few other Eskimo words and phrases.  Won't be long and his Inupiaq vocabulary will surpass ours.