Extra Fun Fact Friday

Teachers Two-Cents:  Greetings from The Land of the Midnight Sun!  We finally had an opportunity to use up all those air miles we earned flying back and forth to California while living in Hawaii for 4 years. So here we are visiting some of our Kona friends who are now residing in Alaska. Not only is the hospitality Alaska sized but 5 days into our two-week trip, we can say our expectations of America’s last frontier have been wildly surpassed.  We are also blessed to have my father-in-law along with us after suffering the recent loss of his precious wife, my husband’s own dear mother, the boys’ loving “Oma” and this blog’s most enthusiastic fan.  We’re all wishing she were on this adventure with us, but know she is experiencing vastly more wondrous things in the presence of her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

So, even though our hearts are heavenward, this week’s factoids will be a little more down-to-earth.  And since it’s impossible to describe Alaska in factoid-sized-bites here’s a generous helping of photos from our adventures so far.

The first day in Alaska we hiked up Flat Top Mountain and picked blue berries. On the way down we saw 3 big bull moose in meadow. Then further on we saw a female moose which is called a cow. The next day we went to Kenai Fjords National Park and hiked to Exit glacier. On the drive back we saw a pod of Beluga Whales really close to shore and we saw lots of wild swans (Sam, 9).

Our family went on a glacier cruise and we saw tons of wildlife including bears, mountain goats, seals, endangered sea lions, otters, porpoises, and eagles.  Our boat went right up to the glaciers so we could hear them creaking and see them calve.  Calving is when chunks of ice break off the glacier and splash into the water (Nate, 11).

19 thoughts on “Extra Fun Fact Friday

  1. So glad for you guys. I remember some of those same scenes, Julie, when with your brother in July 2004. Only we had to contend with mosquitos. I hope the clouds are clear when you drive by Denali. Spectacular!
    Justin and I took a 3 hr. bush flight around the mountain, even landing on a glacier. But that would be too expensive for the whole family.
    “Opa” Jim.

    1. Greetings from Fairbanks Dad! Sadly, all but just the top of Denali was shrouded in clouds as we drove by today. But the drive was stunning in its golden fall splendor nonetheless. We gave up on taking pictures 2 days ago when we realized there are no un-photo-worthy scenes here. Around every corner there’s another reason to exclaim “Good job, God!”

    1. We loved sharing Alaska with Dave but alas we had to share him with the rest of the family too so he’s off for Boise, Idaho and then we’ll meet back up with him at Ben’s. Are you in Sweden right now because I noticed someone logged on from there today.

  2. Julie, about a 3-hr. flight east from Fairbanks is a little Eskimo village on the Kobuk River called Ambler. Don Williams is the chief Elder there. He’s a personal friend I know from the Park Service. He’s been there nearly 60 years. We are still in contact. A Park Service, Forest Service or Fish and Game office should know him. He counts the Caribou herd every year for them using photographs. “Opa” Jim

  3. Sitting in Boise enjoying the pictures second hand as I had the privilege of being with you, my wonderful supporting family, for this portion of your trip. The beauty of God’s creative power is vividly shown as one traverses Alaska. I will follow your last week there and look forward to seeing you upon your return. Thanks for including me. Love, Opa

  4. Oh Julie and Tom
    So sorry about the loss of your “Oma”.
    Really glad we got to meet her. I know how hard it is losing a loved one. Thankful he came with you. I know it’s been a while but the boys are tall and so grown up!
    Thanks for sharing. Blessings to you all!

    1. Thank you, Linda. I had forgotten you had a chance to meet Tom’s folks! I’m so glad for that and know how well you especially can sympathize with David’s loss. Aloha loved one.

  5. Julie,
    You certainly did not need any guidance from me in navigating Alaska and finding fish and more!
    I have never known first-time visitors to have so many epic sightings. Hurrah!
    Meg

    1. You forget we had 5 sets of young eyes and 3 sets of not-so-young to do the sighting. The odds of someone catching a glimpse of something were certainly in our favor :). Titus was able to capture way more clear images of the creatures we saw on his camera. I’ll try and get him to upload some onto another post. Thanks again for the open door and your tips though. The Iditarod museum there in Wasilla was certainly a hit!

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