Monday, January 19, 2015

Home is getting here!

Wahoo! Our stuff finally got to Juneau and the movers will be delivering everything tomorrow. They're even nice enough to make a second delivery to the storage unit. Our place is feeling more and more homey and by the end of this week it will be completely our home! Em is really excited to have all of her decorations and pictures up around the house, especially her willow trees and Americana items. We put in small coffee table over the weekend so we actually have a living room. We also got lucky enough to find an awesome little dyson hand vacuum at Costco. Between that and the rumba, we're able to keep up with all the hair from our fur babies. The puppies are enjoying the balcony now that we have a working fridge and don't need it to keep food cold. Em still heads towards the door to put food away, hopefully after this week she'll make it a habit to put it in the fridge lol. The balcony is great for the dogs to check out the neighborhood and snoop without getting soaked. We're on our 7th or 8th day of straight rain, so each time they go out they get a towel bath. Poor TJ wants out, but after seeing a bald eagle sore over our place the other day, our decision to keep him inside was confirmed. TJ's a tough cat and would put up a good fight, but we'd rather not take chances so he's been spoiled with catnip and toys to keep him busy. Ammo does a good job getting him to play too and TJ taunts him lol. 
 Ammo thought he should pose :)

John spent three days at the mine last week, so he was pretty tired but we spent the weekend inside getting things done for the house and hanging out our some friend's houses. Having the rain actually helped us both to rest a little. We made it to the gym Friday, but took some nice walks over the weekend with the pups and started to new books and rounds of candy crush lol. Em's first week of school went well, it was interesting and challenging, but Friday was productive and she feels like she and her supervising teacher are becoming more of a team. She really misses her coworkers and kiddos from Troy though. Her Alaska licence is coming along and she's looking forward to Wednesday, because she should be starting her first teaching job! She was offered a part time special education teacher for 3rd and 4th graders at the same school she student teaches at, which is very convenient! The principal and directors are super nice and very helpful. The PE teacher is fantastic and super nice as well. They all see potential for this job in the future. Both of us are thrilled for her and can't wait for her to start! This is what Em has been waiting for all her life! She can finally call herself a teacher!  

We're still in the process of finding new doctors, dentist, hair stylist etc. but we're getting there. We hope you are able to enjoy some free time today,if you are off and if you're not please don't forget to do so. We love you all and wish you a happy week!     

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Dan Moller Trail

Last week Em and the pups decided to check out one of the local hikes, the closest being 5 minutes driving from home! The trail was very very icy because it had rained straight for over 24 hours and then it all froze so Em fell a few times, but it was beautiful nonetheless and no broken bones. She ran into a couple that was headed into the cabin on the trail that you can rent out and a lady that had just lost her dog, so she was happy to give the pups some love :/ Em and the pups went again yesterday, but this time it was covered in snow so it was a different kind of workout, but still beautiful! She still has to get John up there and to Sandy beach, but we have lots of time for that :)

 Sea shells in the mountains

 happy happy dogs

 Crazy dogs are amazing that they can run and chase without falling on the bridge!

Ice block sliding all the way home

Playing on ice like kids

Since today was such a beautiful day in Juneau, I thought I'd post our pictures and videos from this last weekend. On Sunday, the power went out on Douglas Island because of how windy it was. John and I decided it was the perfect time to go check out the glacier and walk around. By the way there is a large bridge connecting Douglas Island to Downtown Juneau and although we live on an island, it's a huge island and we're not secluded from the main area at all. We will actually be able to see cruise ships come in across the water in the summer! Anyway back to Sunday, we ended up having way more fun than we thought we could spending 3 hours playing on the ice and walking(more like sliding) over 4 miles! Time just flew by, it was like we were kids again. The glacier lake was completely frozen over making the glacier and glacier caves super accessible. By the time we left there were a lot of people out ice skating and we were ice block sliding, it's a new sport lol. The pups were cracking us up trying to keep their feet underneath them and get everywhere we were. They were pretty cute! The colors of blue and turquoise were amazing and the ice caves were incredible. We have to be super careful and aware of any falling ice, but we tended to follow the "experts" (i.e. local regulars) and see some incredible views. The ice caves beneath the glaciers and the view from above the glacier are stunning, it was like watching the movie "Frozen" in real life, but better. We are stoked to have this (and more) incredible sites so close to us and look forward to going back again and again! 
 What a good looking crew!

 Mili almost made it up this, but slinkied off haha

 Ice cave coolness (no pun intended)

 Dancing with the puppies in the ice princess's home

 You can't tell from the picture, but this thing is huge!

 The boys scouting. They look so official lol

Snowboarding, sliding, pushing and pulling on ice :) WAY too much fun!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

First weeks in Juneau

Well John and I have settled in pretty well and have not once second guessed our decision to move here or come up sooner than May. We got in last Monday around 4:45 am on the ferry and got John some breakfast and a quick catnap, since he had to work that day. The ferry ride was pretty adventurous and beautiful. The first day and a half was rough because we never docked and we went through a big storm with 15 foot waves. Most of the crew and regulars were saying that this was not normal and John said it was definitely worse than his first ride lol. The pups were able to get out of the car, but not out of the boat so they (and all of the other dogs) didn't understand that they could go on the boat. They were troopers though and did great! On the second day, we docked in Ketchican, AK and we all got to get out and stretch our legs. The puppies had way too much fun and Mili even did a little happy dance...literally.

Sunday went much better because we stopped in three different towns before we got to Juneau. Seeing these little towns in random parts of the state was pretty interesting and cool. All of them were far far away from the closest town and had beautiful scenery. We spent most of our time in the observatory room in the front of the ferry and on the side deck taking pictures. We also met two new friends who were moving to Alaska, one of which is in the Army, and spent a lot of time chatting with them. Although we enjoyed our time on the ferry (most of it anyway), we were happy to get off and settle into Juneau. The very first day, we got the keys to our new condo and John was officially checked out of his hotel. Em got to spend her time checking out her new home and taking the pups around the neighborhood.

Not long after getting into the condo, we started many trips to Fred Meyer (we've saved an average of $.30 on gas), found out our brand new fridge/freezer didn't work, and Em scraped her brand new jeep on the post of our car port. Never been in accident before and got too excited with the ability to see out the back and boom. Nice bill for her. John says we're even now! Fortunately the damage was mostly paint and the bumper was not affected. The balcony has been a great fridge for our food (although not a freezer like Pullman would have been). We missed the huge snow storm and frigid temperatures the west coast experienced recently. We should be getting a new fridge within two weeks and for now we found a deep freezer on sale that we wanted to get anyway for all those big fishing and hunting trips :D Emily rapidly started exploring trails and places to take the pups. There is absolutely no shortage of them! Less than two miles down the road is Sandy Beach, which is basically a place for all the dog lovers out there to take their crazy mutts and let them run (or swim) their legs off. It doesn't matter how good or bad the weather is, there are people on the beach with their dogs. Behind the beach is a dirt trail with an outdoor museum of old mining equipment because there was previously a gold mine in its place. The buildings and equipment are in their original place and look really cool! There are a lot of birds that hang out on the shore that Mili and Ammo love to watch. The first time we went, Ammo went full fledged into the water after one of them and literally stopped in his stroke realizing what he did and how cold it was. He promptly turned around and has since only gone up to his chest to see them. That is the only time he has voluntarily gone swimming and Em was so proud! Today we went again and saw a big shipping barge coming into town, we're hoping it has our stuff on it!

 We had a wonderful New Years together and hope you did too! We walked down to a local restaurant 10 minutes from our place and enjoyed their delicious pizza and our awesome waiter, Israel. He is from Mexico and has an incredible accent! Em loved hearing him and John share stories about Mexico City. However for the first time in Em's life and maybe John's we did not make it to midnight. We crashed out around 10:30, must have been all that excitement over the last few weeks! The diversity in Juneau is amazing. Em loves seeing so many cultures throughout the town playing, working, and enjoying each other's company. All this racial tension that we hear about doesn't seem to exist here. Like any place I'm sure there's some, but we have not experienced any and there are a lot of cultures represented in Juneau! It's pretty awesome. Em has also noticed multiple people with disabilities at the store, which reminds her of Moscow, ID. It's really awesome to see so many faces in town and a part of the community.

 As you can see the animals are not enjoying their new home at all :)
 Our backs really enjoyed getting new couches and the friends we bought them from. We had dinner with them the other day and will be going for a hike with them Saturday. They have both lived in Juneau their entire lives and have raised three kids here.
 Have you ever known a dog(s) to have their own room?

Yes the days are shorter and yes that takes some getting use to, but we already seem to be more energized than the first week and actually enjoy having candles lit more often. We've made sure to enjoy the sun when it's out and play a lot! Where we are located is REALLY windy (our neighbors dirt bike fell over 3 times) on a regular basis (today was the first day in a few that we haven't seen any wind at all), but we're protected by a lot of trees and we're a middle condo. The funny thing is over in the valley where John works, there is hardly any wind so if you want to get away from it for a while, you can. On Sunday when the power went out we decided to spend the morning at the Glacier until it came back. That's the price we pay for our incredible view in-between mountains :)
We've gotten a gym membership that conveniently has two locations making it perfect for both of us and we've started getting mail! 

I'll save you the energy of me talking more and post our recent pictures later. John is continuing with his ham radio stuff tonight and he and Hal were able to connect the other day. Both of them were ecstatic! Em is enjoying getting through "fun" books and getting ready for school to start. Keep your eye out for some awesome pictures and videos of this past weekend!