...Your husband should at least find you handy

Perhaps you can recognize the quote with my modifications, the picture serves as evidence of my labor yesterday. (Wait, Romay gets credit too for drawing straight lines with the T-square, as well as holding the wood in place as I sawed with the skill saw.) We had two options for placing bookshelves in our already book infested room, do it the "easy" way with target.com OR just make 'em youself. Option 2 seemed like more fun and much more hands on, while option 1 seemed too much like the easy way out. Afterall, I hadn't taken the carpentry class in 2001 for nothing (I was much more book smart in the class, compared to the hands on part of the class--go figure). So, we ordered some Pine from SBS in Nome, did some cutting and pounding in the shop, and placed brackets around the shelf so the kids wouldn't knock it over. Our poor kids get blamed for that kind of thing now, Jay is the next clumsy one to blame if there's an accident. All in all, there's tons of work to do in KKA, just come on over and we'll start you on a project....on the other hand, that is also a reason to avoid coming over. I'll update you with Jay's greenhouse project for a friend of ours. Gratefully, the kids also haven't grown weary of holding things in place, or fetching tools, good little helpers, no wonder they sleep in a little now a days.


Where's Romay??

Leona. First, it seems like we're sitting down to eat and miraculously, there's a knock on the door. The kids start yelling, "door's open!", Kemper starts barking and sprinting full speed, even if he knocks Jay over on the way, and the parents are trying to scramble to beat the dog to the door before the guest does so. If we're really lucky, the phone would have been ringing as this fiasco is going on.
"Oh Hi Leona," Romay greets in a light hearted voice.
Without hesitation, "Where's Romay?" Leona distantly responds. "Wait a minute, I think, does she always say this as she is looking right at Romay?" This routine has become somewhat normal now, when we know Leona is making her way over, often the kids and I will hide our smiles as we know the steps Leona will take....knock knock (woof woof goes Kemper), COME IN, hi Leona someone says, WHERE'S ROMAY? I think we'll get T-shirts with Leona's face on the front and the back will say, "where's Romay?"
I just wanted to share this story with "you" since a character like Leona makes our day. It's no surprise when she has us all laughing about her singing, or MILLIONS of questions too obvious for common sense, or her squeezing in between people on the couch to better see the TV. Here's a picture of us three girls, Leona let Romay squeeze in the middle.


Things that go bump in the night

Myra and I are now officially on summer schedule... though it is the first summer schedule that we have had to figure kids into. Thankfully, that means we all go to bed a little earlier and get up for that first sip of coffee and chapter of a book a little earlier.
Why am I up then? The thing that goes bump in the night in my experience since having kids is Romay. I read the kids to sleep, but a scary dream had my little girl up again. She generally wakes pretty disoriented from them and wanders aimlessly through the house, making it easy for me to hear that help is needed. Getting her back to sleep is an experience that calms both her and me... though I can't seem to fall to sleep now.
Lots of little things are happening right now. Myra and I just got back from Unalakleet where we helped the district solve the world's problems one curriculum standard at a time. It really is nice to have a say into what we will be teaching next year, but five days (including a Sunday and Memorial Day) were too many just after school got out to be fixing typos in district wide tests and planning curriculum.
The highlight of the whole thing had nothing to do with teaching kids anything, though My and I were as excited as kids as we climbed into the cockpit of our friend's Cessna 172 for the first time. He offered to teach us to fly, a dream of Myra's and mine since we were little, and we jumped at the opportunity. Jeni (the caribou castrator) went up with us for our first flight and though she survived the takeoffs and landings of two rookie pilots, failed to hold down her dinner as I made my first attempt at flying about a point (360s around a ground object). The ziplock bag really is one of man's greatest inventions... at least the cooks put out fresh cheese cake for us upon our return to help fill in the gap that was made through Jen's new Cessna diet.
Today was a great day in the shop as the Myra, the kids and I took a stab at the first official project of the summer. Cramming four people into our little two-bedroom apartment is an interesting challenge and so we built some new book shelves today to help with our storage problems. Like any good bush Alaskans, we scrounged for wood and built them ourselves. All said, I think it cost us about five dollars to build them... they are much more strongly built than "the sled" from this winter. Myra made the observation that she had never seen any kids as excited as ours to get a book shelf for their room. They spent the afternoon arranging books and "prized" possesions carefully on the different levels.
Hope this blog finds you all doing well.