Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Goodbye, Quya.

I don't mean to be THAT dog owner who posts tons of pics of their dog like their dog is their baby, but....

Today I said goodbye forever to Quya. She is moving to Colorado to join a dog sled team.

I am heartbroken that it hasn't worked out, but I love her. And I'm glad that she has found a good home in Colorado.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Studentism #16: MySpace

Student (pensively): "Ms. Beck.... what was MySpace like?"

I just burst out into laughter. That made me feel old!

Saturday, March 21, 2015

tuttu qayaq & napulgit | caribou kayak and old-style sled

Well, it is official. This is my last year in Alaska. I put in my letter of resignation a few weeks ago.
At this point, the plan is to spend the summer in Santa Fe where I will study at St. John's College; this will be my last semester. (Graduation, here I come!) 

So, to honor my final year in Alaska (In case you're wondering, it's been 4 1/2 years in Alaska!), I bought myself a caribou jaw sled. I saw this a couple of years ago, and I really wanted one. Since I only have nine more weeks left of school, I figured I better find an artist who could make one for me. 

The black part is made from whale baleen. In case you're wondering, baleen is whale bone, and you can shape it once it's soaked.

The white jaw belonged, once upon a time, to a poor tundra caribou who was probably eaten for dinner. (Yum! I actually love caribou.)

The tan portion of the qayaq (kayak) is made from caribou antlers. The black portion of the spear is baleen, and the white tip is walrus ivory. The paddle is also walrus ivory.

And the back includes a "blanket" of seal fur.

The wonderful artist inscribed his name.

"Your teeth on Oreos." :) 

So, Quya was hilarious when I brought this home. She was fascinated by the smell, even though I find the sled completely scentless. She'd sniff it, jump, recoil, pace, and go back to do the whole thing all over again. She's VERY intrigued by this new object in our home.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Studentism #15

"I'm glad you have the blinds down. The darkness heals me and shields me. I'm sure Apollo has something out for me. The sun....intensifies on me. I feel like an ant under a magnifying glass." 
[one of my students who is addicted to reading and being dramatic and all other kinds of wonderfulness]

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Kivgik, the Messenger Feast

Here's a short video from Kivgik, the messenger feast. 

And here is a video of the Little Diomede and King Island Dancers from Kivgik 2013!

Quyanaqpak, Father, for...
a blizzard day - no school!
good sermons
intelligent conversation
laughter in the midst of stress
morning snuggles from Quya
Valentine's Day brownies from sweet neighbors

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

the sun never sets in the summer

This was a gift given to me a few months ago. I absolutely love it.

Current Stats:

Today's Temperature: -25 F (-32 C)
Wind Speed: East 5 mph
Wind Chill: -40 F (-40 C)
Sunrise: 11:09 A.M.
Sunset: 4:13 P.M.

Quyanaqpak, Father, for...
a fun 20 minutes babysitting my neighbors' adorable daughters
Quya chilling out for a change
sunshine, sunshine, sunshine
the light at the end of the tunnel

Saturday, January 31, 2015

tuqłuaġaq | to look through a spyglass

Taking pictures, even with a simple camera phone, is like looking through a spyglass. It focuses you on your surroundings, allowing you to look for something to remember.

Like this face. This face is the face that makes me forgive her every single time she eats my chapstick.

Snowy ladder.

The Barrow Whalers' colors are blue and gold, which also happen to be the colors of the sky and streetlights in January.

Sure, I would have much rather him to have remembered the word "eschew," but at least he was creative in his response.

I was pretty lucky to have gone to the state's RTI conference in Anchorage. I learned so much!


Anchorage from the air.

On the Left: Brooks Range
On the Right: Barrow

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

thanks for tolerating us

My birthday was on Monday, and one of my students made this cake for me. Hilarious. Perfect. Precious. 

Current Stats:
Temperature: -18
Wind Speed: NE 13 mph
Wind Chill -41
Sunrise: none
Sunset: none

Saturday, January 10, 2015

the air hurts my face

Current Temp: -3 F (-19 C)
Wind Speed: N 17 mph
Wind Chill: -24 F (-31 C)
Sunrise: none
Sunset: none

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

from Christmas time

This is what happens at Christmas time when there are nine kids all under the age of eight in the house. :)