Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Spring has sprung

I know. It has been a while again since my last post. I do have plenty of pictures though so I suspect I'll be off the hook at least a little bit. Summer is coming quickly with a lot more activity so it's going to get harder to keep up with posting again. As if it wasn't hard enough already! I figured I'd better get one up quickly before May hits! This picture was taken just days after the Gunsight trip on the last post. I think it captured the blues in the glacier better than the last picture did.

Just another pretty shot of the mountain out our front window.

This shot shows our house from the front. It's a bit washed out but I decided to leave it that way rather than try to tone it down. The sun really does make everything VERY bright! That isn't the point of the picture though. Check out the cliff just above and to the right of the house.

Did you see these guys? The sheep like to hang out in the sun up on that cliff.

I finally found a way to demonstrate the power of the sun up here. These pictures were taken in our kitchen. The indoor/outdoor thermometer sits on a shelf next to a window with the "outdoor" probe sitting right up against the window. The indoor temperature is whatever temperature it is right where the thermometer is sitting. Solar gain is an awesome thing but you'd better plan to shut down the wood stove by lunch time or you'll cook yourself out of the house by mid-afternoon.

This picture is an early morning "sun isn't hitting here yet" picture. The days are really long again too. It is starting to get light at about 5 am and is still light until close to 11. We're still gaining almost 6 minutes of daylight every day. When spring comes, it works quickly!

This is what the sun did to our driveway just days after the last post. Besides the small pond, if you look at the ice in the foreground, you can see the tire tracks crunching through the top layer of ice and also note the smaller holes forming next to the pond. Those smaller holes were showing up all over the ice road at that point. Needless to say, we didn't drive it much after that. The ATV trail still had quite a bit of ice over the one section (as you saw in the last post), but it is melting off fairly quickly at this point. Most of the trail is clear now with just a few ice sections and bits of snow here and there.

Yesterday wasn't the most beautiful day with some snow, sleet and rain falling here and there, but it made for some fantastic picture taking. I made good use of the sun bursting through the clouds to get some pretty pictures. Long Lake.

I FINALLY captured the blue! This is Long Lake again.

This is the overlook on the hill outside Palmer.

Down by the Matanuska River toward the butte in Palmer.

Last week on the drive into town.

King River last week.
King Mountain last week.

Sergei rescued the little Chickadee that hit the window.

Just got a kick out of this. You never know if the place you will be will have a handy plug-in so you carry your own extension cord to make sure you can reach! Only in Alaska!

We got a book on wire working for Oksana so she has been busy making all sorts of jewelry. She's always been interested in using beads, but adding in the wire work has given her so many more options! She's having a blast!

The same goes for Andrei. He did a little leather work this summer at camp and really enjoyed it so we got him a kit for Christmas. He has been busy doing leather work all winter. Here is a gun belt he made for Rodney.

And he is working on making his own chaps. I'll get a picture of them when he's done! He's also gotten Rodney hooked on making gun holsters, knife sheaths and leatherman cases. The two of them together have been having a blast making stuff for themselves and for others.

Speaking of projects, this steamer has been in the making for a couple of years. Nate had drawn up plans for a "more power" steamer before he left. It was recently completed and then Matt cleaned up the tank a bit. Before it was painted with Matt and Ryan examining the work.

Not quite done with the paint job, but they needed it already so the paint job will need to be finished later. Apparently it works GREAT!!! It makes plenty of steam to thaw frozen pipes!

Next week the summer staff starts arriving and we have the outdoor education classes starting. Schools from Anchorage bring students out for a few days of outdoor learning. They take trips to the glacier and the fossil beds, climb on the climbing wall and more. Here Earl and Todd are hiking up to the fossil beds to see if the snow has cleared enough up there.

Jake and Joey also hiked up.

The summer schedule is about to hit! We're still looking for a few girl counselors (and a nurse and a worship leader) for the summer so let us know if you know of anyone who might be able to come help!

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