Sunday, December 27, 2009

next blog

I know its been awhile but please be patient. We just moved into our house and don't have internet yet. When we do get it I have lots to tell. Its been exciting. Hope everyone had a great Christmas and I wish
you all a Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 17, 2009


I'm getting better at driving.  Almost every morning there is new snow and ice covering the roads that were clear yesterday.  Drive slow and stop early is the way to go.  I've only slid a few times because I waited too late to put on my breaks.  That is not a good feeling.  The first time I couldn't stop, I started crying.  I was so scared.  Thank goodness no one was driving on the other road.  I also got scared when I saw a car driving in the grocery store parking lot that said STUDENT DRIVER!!  What's sad is that student driver can probably drive better than me.  I started laughing when I thought of that.  I mean that student has probably been driving on these roads a lot longer than I have. 

I drive in the dark for most of the time because we are now down to less than four hours of sunshine a day.
:(  Very sad.  After the 21st, we start gaining minutes of sunshine :)  That makes me happy!!  This morning I did my errands and returned to the hotel before 10 a.m. and it was still dark outside.  I have a brightly colored purse and turn on all the lights to help me brighten up the day.  I'm starting to get adjusted to it.

Snow has been falling for the past three days.  Not a heavy snow but it has been nonstop.  I promise once I get a better internet connection I will put pictures on here so everyone can see what it looks like.  I've got to go play in the sun now.  I hope you have a good weekend!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Things I have learned so far.

I've only been in Alaska a few days but I have already learned some important lessons.

1. Waterproof boots are a must. Tennis shoes just don't work, no matter how comfy they are.

2. Three layers on top and bottom will keep me warm while I am outside for only a few hours.

3. Gloves just don't work very well. I need some mittens. Soon!

4. Driving in the snow and ice is not so bad. Getting out of my car and putting gas in it is miserable.

5. -2 degrees F is significantly warmer than -13 degrees F.

6. I think the snow bib I bought might be the best piece of clothing I have ever purchased.

7. Remote start is the best thing that has ever been invented.

8. Wipe the snow off the door and the roof to prevent the snow from melting on my seat and giving me a
wet butt.

9. Four hours a day is just not enough sunshine for me.

10. Instead of shrubs in people's yards, some have ice sculptures. They don't melt.

11. I constantly have hat hair and I am not the only one.

I am sure as the days turn into weeks I will learn more. This is a crazy and interesting place to live. I can't wait to experience more of it.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Where's the Sun????

The hardest thing to get used to up here is the lack of sun right now. The past three days the sun has risen about 10:45am and sets about 3 p.m. My body wants to go to sleep around 6. It is so hard to stay awake. Gabe and I try to go out and play in the sun but when it is 0 degrees it's hard to stay outside that long. I now understand why depression is so prevalent around here. I think I could sleep for 12 hours a day. There's no sun to wake you up in the morning and then you have to stay awake for HOURS after the sun sets. I'm trying to get used to the schedule but starting the 22nd of December we gain 7 minutes a day of sunshine. I can't wait!!!

We explored part of Fairbanks yesterday and I drove. It's really not as hard as I thought to drive in the snow and ice. Most of the main roads are ice free and easy to drive. The ones with ice on them are a little tricky. The most important thing I learned was to hit the brakes before I think I need them and to be at least two car lengths behind the person in front of me. Almost everyone obeys this rule which is nice. Down South people ride your butt when you are driving but up here hardly anyone does that. It makes driving easy. One crazy thing is that most of the right turn lanes are full of snow! When the snow plow comes through the right turn lanes gets all the snow and it looks like a bike lane.

The piles of snow in parking lots and on the sides of the roads are insane. Some of the piles are about 14 feet high. We counted 21 piles of snow in one shopping center parking lot. The snow is all dirty and nasty. I have never seen anything like this in my life. It is crazy!

This next week I'm going to explore the town by myself. We'll see how that goes. Have a good week.

Friday, December 11, 2009


Snow, snow everywhere!!! I’m like a kid in a candy store. I just want to play in it all the time, if it weren’t so cold and I had snow boots! I’ll post pictures later. Poor Buddy walks on the snow and sinks to his belly. He runs out and does his business and then is ready to go back inside. He is not a winter dog. We have to buy him shoes this weekend so he can walk on the snow. Buster loves the snow. When he goes outside, he just runs and runs and plays in the snow. I think we are going to make him a sled dog; that way he can pull Buddy!

Even the roads are covered in ice and snow. Salt on the roads doesn’t really matter when it gets so cold. It got up to 1 degrees F yesterday and it is not supposed to break 0 degrees F today or this weekend. I don’t know how much I’ll be able to go outside. It’s not very humid outside so it actually doesn’t feel that bad. Don’t get me wrong it’s still cold, but it could be worse.

I still haven’t driven yet. I’ve never driven in real ice and snow and I am scared to do it. What am I going to do if I slide in the ditch? I probably will. I’ve seen so many people slide and everyone drives so slowly. This weekend we are going to get new tires and Gabe is going to teach me how to drive. You would think knowing how to drive in mud would help me out so we’ll see.

One thing they have up here that shocked me is the smell. I thought that this is the wild and the air will be fresh and clean but that is not the case. The air is so cold and dense that all the fumes from cars and factories stays low and makes it hard to breath. I walked out of the airport and tried to take a deep breath but started coughing instead. When you get out of the city it gets a whole lot better. The air is fresh and clean. I could breathe very deep and not cough. Thank goodness we decided not to live in the city.

We got our car winterized yesterday and now we can plug it in at night and it still starts the next morning. Also, if you live somewhere cold a remote start is so worth it. We can stand by the window in our hotel room and start the car. It is so nice and warm when we get in. There is frost all over the car though.

We are going to explore the town of Fairbanks and North Pole this weekend so I’ll let you know how they are Sunday. Have a good weekend!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

December 9, 2009

Today I start a new chapter in my life. Gabe and I are moving to North Pole, Alaska for at least three years. Yes, I said North Pole. I decided to blog about it because I want my family and friends to experience this adventure with me. Let me give you a little background info. I have lived all of my 28 years in the South, mostly Mississippi. I have probably seen snow and ice less that ten times during those years. Now I am moving to a place where it snows all but three months a year. I am going to freeze.

When we first got his orders to Alaska we were scared because they said to winterize our vehicle to 70 BELOW ZERO. 70 BELOW ZERO!!!! I didn’t know a person could survive in that temp much less drive a car. How am I supposed to survive that kind of cold when I have never even felt 0 degrees. How do you winterize your vehicle? First you need a remote start put on so you don’t have to go out in the cold and start you car. Next you put something that looks like an electric blanket on your battery and you plug it in an outlet in the parking space to keep you battery warm and working. My first thought was; I am going to live in a place where my battery on my car has to have an electric blanket!?!?!? How is this possible? Then you have to get special oils and other liquids that won’t freeze when it gets that cold. We also have to get studded tires so we can drive on the snow and ice because salting the roads does not work when it is that cold. We do that tomorrow because no Subaru dealership in the lower 48 can winterize your car to Alaska standards.

I keep telling myself it will be fine. We both enjoy the outdoors and always wanted to visit Alaska, but I never really thought we would end up living there. Sometimes I am scared out of my mind. I’m going to get eaten by a bear during the summer when we go for walks. A bald eagle is going to eat Buddy, my dachshund. There are so many things about living in Alaska I don’t know. Right now they get 4, yes 4, hours of daylight a day. I lived the past two years in Texas where there was maybe 4 days of clouds. I need my sun! During the summer we get almost 20 hours of daylight a day. That will be nice because I can have a wonderful garden, if the moose don’t eat it!

I’m going in to this with a positive attitude. It’s going to be an adventure of a lifetime. Don’t you want to come?