May 11

I can’t say anything too revealing because my mom and mother in law read this blog regularly. (Yes I know, gives a whole new meaning to unconditional love doesn’t it?)

We just finished shopping for my mom, Mama Jean (howard’s mom), Betty (Howard’s stepmom), and my memaw. We bought awesome gifts.

And might I just add:

We are awesome fucking children. Who love all our mothers. Just ask our Master Card.

P.S. I’m totally kidding about the Master Card thing. Well kinda. But we seriously do love our mothers a lot. Every one of them.

May 11

Today, I came across the card I received from James’ mother about a month after his death. I’d tucked it safely away in my desk drawer because I didn’t want to lose it. Sharon wrote:

“Thank you so much for everything. You don’t know how much James loved you both, but I did. We all miss you.”

And that was all it took. I barely made it to the bathroom so I could cry.

I’d gotten to where I didn’t think about it everyday like I did the first few months after. A little boy might remind me of him, someone might say something sweet that would take me back, but the pain dulled and a daily thought of him was fading.

But I’m glad I found the card, because I must always remember what happened to him. I must never forget so hopefully, I can someday prevent another person from doing the same thing.

May 10

There is nothing like jogging and getting your heartbeat to a nice steady pace and having your iPod go dead. Yes I know I am the dumbass who hasn’t charged it in over a week but damn. Could not have happened at a worse time. I CANNOT and WILL NOT exercise without music in my ears. Just no. Fucked up my entire work out. Damn that Gwen.

I finally got to watch Brokeback Mountain. Oh my dog. What an incredibly sad but beautiful story. Of course I bawled. I have to admit, I was ready to be disappointed because I’d worked myself up with expectations, AND, because it was so controversial.

First of all, the sex scenes were not that damn racy. Seriously. They were hot, don’t get me wrong, but geez, what’s everyone getting worked up about? I’ve seen worse. Honestly. Second of all, there isn’t really a lot of sex at all. So all you homophobes out there can just calm the hell down. Howard and I really liked it though. We had a conversation that went something like this afterwards:

Me: Baby, I hope you know that if you EVER feel a homosexual tendency, you can tell me. I’d want you to tell me before you went out and did it behind my back.

Him: And baby? I want you to know that if you EVER feel a homosexual tendency, you’ll invite me to watch and bring my camera.

Is he a stereotypical man or what?

Spring has arrived! It’s been in the 60’s most of the week. However, the river ice still hasn’t moved. They’re thinking it’ll probably move in the next day or so. We have a contest just like Nenana has, only the purse is a lot less. It’s still fun though. I’ll guess next year when I have a better shot at knowing when the ice will move. Most of the snow is gone too, but with that comes garbage. Howard and I spent most of our weekend cleaning up the yard and shoveling dog turds. The ice has a wonderful way of preserving them. You gotta figure we shoveled about 7 months worth of Unuck. (Yup’ik for poop) We mixed it with all the dead loose grass and think it will make a wonderful beginning for our compost pile this summer.

Also, Richard’s obituary was finally published. I thought it was beautiful. Needless to say, we sold all of our newspapers today. (yes we get a paper everyday, flown in on our morning flight, aren’t we special?)

Gotta run, Pepper is a frenzy. I think he wants to go add some Unuck to the compost pile. Such a good boy.

May 8

Mr. Ironic quit. Oh happy day. Yes, they will most certainly be seven days a week, long hour, happy days. But nonetheless happy.

Yes, he was that bad of an employee. And his former boss (the one who ran the store before me) completely agrees with me.

However, my book keeper left too. But I knew she was going. She gave me a two week notice and told me that I was “the best boss she’d ever had”. The reason she is leaving is I can’t pay her 18 bucks an hour which is what she will be making at her new job. Can’t blame her a bit. The bills have to be paid. Her job is two weeks on and two weeks off and she even offered to work for me on her two weeks off but I wouldn’t let her. Because those two weeks on will entail very long days and she’ll want two weeks off by the time she’s done.

And Mr. Ironic thinks says he doesn’t like my Managment style. Actually, he renigged those words and said “we were great to him.” “more than fair”. But he loves to say different things behind our backs. OH that’s just the tip of the iceburg, trust me.

The shrink is in town tomorrow and I’ve got a 4:15 appt. I’m in bad need of a therapy session, as you all can see.

I finished reading Marley and Me last night. You know? The only way I can describe it is “sweet and beautiful.” It’s just a really good tribute to a man’s best friend. It’s the kind of book I’d write about my Lucky dog. It’s not a “intellectually challenging book”, and that’s why I like it. It’s very non-pretentious. It’s a sweet story. The End.

Speaking of my Lucky Dog, he’s been getting a lot slower lately. I just noticed the other day how his eyelashes are all white now. He’s no longer the spry little man. He’s now just a very distinguished gentleman. Last night, after finishing my book, I turned to him as he slept on my pillow and he opened his 13 year old eyes and we just lay there looking at each other, I stroked his sweet, soft head, and he snorted contentedly and sighed. I whispered to him: “You’ll let me know won’t you sweetie? Just like Marley in the book?” And I swear to God, he reached out his paw and lightly touched me on my chest. Then I smothered him in kisses before pulling him into a spoon and I turned out my light and we fell asleep. He didn’t move all night and neither did I.

How’s that for a Monday?

May 5

Let me just say that I got an A on my final. Yipee! And a very nice note from the professor. Then the entire class got a note from him. It is so inspiring that I asked him if I could use it and he obliged. Because he just rocks.

Now I understand why Howard hated leaving the education field to follow me and chase our dream of living in Alaska. I am realizing more and more why he hates his current job. He has the same passion John the professor has. I wish all educators were like this:

“The final papers for this class are cascading into my in-box and fax
machine here at Chukchi Campus in Kotzebue. Thank you for such a
memorable class this term. I very much appreciate your hard work. I am
especially impressed and gratified by the way so many students seem
genuinely touched by your work in this class. Notice I said YOUR work,
not mine, because it truly is because of YOUR work that students have
grown and blossomed so wonderfully in this class. As an educator, I am
most encouraged when students relate how an educational experience has
helped to change they way they look at the world. I am most encouraged
when students say they are applying their class experience to real
life.
Of course, the classroom experience is just the beginning. As Myles
Horton said, we want to have experiences that are “yeasty,” that can
and
will grow into some kind of movement, some kind of positive, permanent
transformation of a situation.

Please know that everyone has advanced exponentially in this class
this semester.

Actually, I admire you all for your stamina, your determination to
pursue higher education in rural Alaska, where you might be part of
only
a handful of local residents doing what you are doing. But as Mahatma
Gandhi said, “What you do may seem insignificant, but it is very
important that you do it.” Others in your community are learning not
from what you are saying you are going to do, but what you are doing about
what you are doing. You are leading by example. When you take a college
class in Selawik or Sitka or Cold Bay, Chevak, Dillingham, Ruby, Eagle
River or St. Mary’s, you are sending the most powerful message possible
to your friends, colleagues, relatives, spouse, and especially to your
children that education and lifelong learning are extraordinarily
important. If Mom can do what she’s doing with nine kids, then I can
finish my homework tonight, this week, this month, this year. That’s
the
impact you all have.

Thank you all for your genuine work this semester, and your love. Don’t
ever lose sight of your vision to change the world. You can do it, one
day at a time!”

Thank you John for your inspiration and guidance. The world needs more people like you. And yes, I typed this after getting my A, so you know it’s from the heart.

May 4

Want to know what I bought in Anchorage a couple of weeks ago?

*looks around sheepishly…leans forward, cups hands around mouth*

*clears throat*

Dawson’s Creek Season 2.

Oh yes. Which would imply that I have Season 1. That implication would be correct.

Wanna know what else?

I’m loving the hell out of it. Or should I say “We”.

I can’t help it. Living in Wilmington, NC for four years, while most of the seasons filmed, made me a wee bit curious. Funny how I never watched it until now though. Lord do I remember those days of trying to drive downtown by the docks and seeing all the streets roped off because they were filming. It was just downright annoying back then but now I’m good enough for it. Go figure.

(Insert shameless name dropping about riiiiiiight here)Did I also tell ya’ll that I sold Frank Capra Jr. his eyeglasses during the time I lived there? Yes I did. Helped him pick them out and everything. He’s a pretty nice guy actually and trusted my judgement as far as eyewear goes. At the time they were filming Black Knight with Martin Lawrence at the studio and he was so excited about the big castle they were building on set. He was trying to tell me all these exciting things but he was speaking “Mr. Fancy Movie Maker” speak and I just nodded enthusiastically and said things like “That’s so neat!…now let’s try on this frame.”

Yeah. Sorry. Tangient.

Anywho.

Boy, have we been getting homesick lately. There’s been lots of talk about missing the ocean, missing the Azaleas blooming in Spring, missing our friends, missing our Jeep that is just sitting back in NC waiting to sink its big tires into some warm sand again out on the north end of Carolina Beach. Oh boy.

What’s scary is how into it we are. Howard even. Who’s all “let’s crawl into bed and watch some Dawson”…and I’m all giddy and saying “Yeah! Let’s do that.”

Sad sad lot over here. Poor girl can’t even get on and update because she’s wondering when Pacey and Joey are finally going to hook up and when Jennifer will stop making that damn face where she looks like she might burst into tears at any moment because seriously. My ass? It is hurting. It’s as bad as Tom Cruise or Jennifer Love Hewitt.

Speaking of Tom Cruise, can we just have Joey back please?

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