November already!

Today, I hurt. Inside, I’m happy that Obama is going to be our next president, but my body has been taking a beating these last few days. Everything is frozen in place here, so moving anything (dog houses, wood pallets, dog food, even dog bowls and dog poop!) takes extra effort.

We’ve also started running dog teams with the ATV, so they can shake out the summer lazies, and start remembering how to take commands. Harnessing and hooking up 8 to 10 excited dogs is an intense experience. All of the dogs are eager to run, but some, especially the bigger ones, freak out and flail around while I’m trying to harness them and move them to the line. Add to that the need to navigate around other dogs, avoid holes, and remain upright on snow and ice while moving a rowdy, barking, 70lbs dog, and you get a pretty serious workout. I haven’t fallen yet, while moving a dog, and I’m definitely not looking forward to being dragged across the yard when I eventually do.

Once we head out, sometimes I get to play lead dog when they get confused at trail intersections, which involves jumping off the back of the ATV, running up ahead, showing the dogs which way to go, and then trying not to get run over as they turn and start running your way (ask Skippy about that one). Then I usually get to run alongside the ATV while Libby slows it down a little, then leap back on as she goes past, and reseat myself as we bump down the trail.

I need to stretch more, I think.

A few days ago, I found myself once again taking pictures of a beautiful sunrise. The sunsets here are just a spectacular (due to a recent volcanic eruption, I just learned!), but there’s a big hill in the way, and I’m usually too busy feeding dogs to find a good place to take pictures. Sunrise now happens around 9am, with sunset occurring right around 5pm.

Anyway, I took a few pictures and stitched them into a panoramic. The original file will print out to be 2′ x 6″! I’ve uploaded this one at 1900 pixels wide, so those of you with large screens can get a really good look.

I also took some video of the same sunrise, lest you disbelieve these colors existed. I sped it up from 1 hour to 20 seconds, for the attention-impaired.

“B” is for “Bring on Barack”

Way back in October, I signed up for a little game on Return to Rural. She gave me the letter B. Sorry this is late, Tenzin!

The premise is that if you have a blog and leave a comment on this post, I’ll assign you a letter. You take that letter and make a list of 10 things you love that begin with that letter. Then, you pass on the letter love to the bloggers who make comments on your post. It’s creative and social!

Ten things I love that start with the letter “B,” in random order:

1. Bakers. Especially Skippy Baker, which works out well, since we’re married!
2. Bagels. Toasted, with both butter and peanut butter.
3. Busy. A trait I inherited from my father and grandfather, it seems. I like to be occupied, either mentally or physically, most of the time. I’m currently working 3 jobs, presenting to the local Mac User Group tomorrow, volunteering for monthly technology help sessions, and building my own business. My leisure time is spent doing photography, videography, blogging, some video games, and reading. And I sleep and eat too.
4. Bacon. Yes, I was vegetarian for a couple of years, but I really like bacon. Especially thick, slow-cooked, chewy bacon. Especially good wrapped in toast slathered with butter…which I only eat once a month or less, so no, I don’t weigh 800 pounds.
5. Buckets. If it weren’t for buckets, I would have a really hard time feeding the dogs, getting water, and containing trash, among other things. Yay, buckets!
6. Blogging. 4 years of my totally awesome and interesting life and counting!
7. Bill of Rights. (Mostly) Guaranteeing freedoms since 1791. Somewhat trampled since 2001. Still worth fighting for.
8. Buffs. Sara P. (no, not “Palin,” though that was her Halloween costume) got us these last year. They are awesome. Less cumbersome than a scarf, more versatile than a neck gaiter, perfect for Alaska.
9. Baked goods. Especially sweet baked goods. There are several excellent bakeries in Homer. Fortunately, I don’t usually drive past them when I’m in town, otherwise I’d be a lot poorer. (Strange that I married a Baker? I THINK NOT.)
10. Blankets. On the bed, on the couch, in the car…I love blankets. So warm. So cozy. So…blankety.

By the looks of my list, if I had gotten an “F” instead of a “B,” I could have just written FOOD really big and called it good.

Who wants a letter?