17 June 2009


Last year I worked for the International Pacific Halibut Commission. Nearly 150,000 dead halibut passed my hands, I waved a wand over each - concurrently blessing them and checking each for a tag in its head. But never ever have I personally killed a halibut.

A few nights ago Jeff finally came home from his brief respite with 'employment' with the fantastic idea to gear up and head out on the Bay to assess the halibut situation out there...beautiful. I went out to the garden to finish planing some flowers while the boys got rods and reels and bait and the proper fixin's for an evening of fishing.

And beautiful it was! No halibut were found, but I caught an Irish Lord (a oft berated fish of little value to fisher-folk), and Ben and Jeff reeled in a small handful of p. cod - great for bait, apparently! Kaya hated the boating part, but loved the fishing. Shaemus couldn't really care less really, and slept through most of the fishing part, and Pemba loved every minute (evidenced by her full-body trembling and occasional 4-paws on the gunwales).

07 June 2009

River Rally 2009

Just pictures for now - it's so beautiful and SUMMER outside, it's hard to buckle down and post much on the blog. Last week I went to Baltimore, MD for the River Network's annual conference - River Rally!
I **loved** it. Loved the people, being in the City, loved the field of work and the passion. I was humbled by the sheer number of people that believe in the power of stories, the importance of community. I left feeling inspired, empowered, and oh-so-thankful to be back home!

Hope, Alaska

I told Ben that I was determined to go and sleep in a tent, and not in the backyard. i didn't have to work on Monday, Memorial Day, and was long overdue to get out of dodge for a little bit. Plans hadn't been set, and come to find out it was the opening weekend for Saturday night music @ the Seaview Cafe in Hope - quite possibly my most-favorite-town-in-Alaska. Ian and friends joined us on Saturday, and we camped in Hope. In Hope - as in, the most populated place on earth (or so it felt) on Memorial Day. We were at the end of the road, in between a parking lot and Turnagain Arm, surrounded by people and city-folk reveling in their camping holiday weekend. Not *entirely* what I had in mind, but I got what I wanted - sleeping in a tent! The music on Saturday night was fantastic - an AK band the Whipsaws - it was great to see Ian, and we hiked up Point Hope on Sunday .. beautiful and alpine and steep and sweeping. Loved it.

Who knew so many people could fit in this wee-area??!?
Ian , getting his ducks in a row before a run /hike

While Ben & I were up on Point Hope, we saw the bore tide coming in Turnagain Arm! This is a crazy phenomenon which has something to do with how shallow the arm is and how much water floods in during certain tides. Turnagain Arm is not a place for recreating - the mud will suck you in, the water will wash you away. But it's certainly beautiful. And funny to see so much water with no boats on it....

Pesto from stinging nettles

(from Two Sisters Bakery)

* A big bunch of young nettles (~8cups), picked in the yard (careful to avoid the known spots where dogs and other household members may pee) and boiled for 2 minutes
* 1 cup-ish of shredded parmesean cheese
* 1 cup-ish of walnuts
* 5 garlic cloves
* salt
* dash o' pepper
* ~1/2 cup of olive oil