Thursday, January 27, 2011

Congrats to my friends of PAMYUA!

Phillip has shared with me that Pamyua's music is being featured on Discovery's "Flying Wild Alaska!" I am so proud of the group and their commitment to the arts and their culture! It is awesome that the world can hear their traditional Inuit music via this show... such an incredible opportunity. We have been blessed with Pamyua's appearance here in Chevak for the last couple of years, and my students love to listen to their CDs when we are in class. Thanks for sharing your talents with us, guys! Keep soaring ;)

Monday, January 24, 2011

Snow Storm Jan.23: Teacher Housing

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This video was taken on Jan 23, not 22 :) I went on a short walk to a friend's house in teacher housing. Due to the intense wind and storm, you may not be able to hear my voice-over. Enjoy!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Teaching in Rural Alaska: Part 2

For those of you who might be thinking of teaching in Alaska, here is a link to our ATP (Alaska Teacher Placement) website:

http://www.alaskateacher.org/doku.php?id=alaska_job_fairs

ATP is scheduled to be in Minneapolis, Minnesota on April 10, 2011, Anchorage, Alaska on April 15 & 16, 2011, and Seattle, Washington on April 17, 2011 for job fairs.

As always, if you have specific questions about teaching in Alaska, I am happy to share MY experience ;)

Happy trails!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Laugh, Live, and Love... THAT'S Life!

"There comes a time in life when you walk away from all the drama and people who create it. You surround yourself with people who make you laugh, you forget the bad, and focus on the good. So, love the people who treat you right. Pray for the ones who don't. Life is too short to be anything but happy. Falling down is part of LIFE... getting back up is LIVING!" ~Unknown


Someone shared this on their Facebook page today. It goes perfectly well with the theme of my blog... life is too short-- enjoy the ride! I just love it! Take time today to give something good to the world. Pluck the weeds, and watch the flowers bloom! Just live the dream...



Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Happy Belated Birthday, Dr. King! Thank You!

"Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."

"I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear."

"Nonviolence means avoiding not only external physical violence but also internal violence of spirit. You not only refuse to shoot a man, but you refuse to hate him."

"We must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid of the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us. When we discover this, we are less prone to hate our enemies."

Life is All About Dancing



I hope you never lose your sense of wonder
You get your fill to eat
But always keep that hunger
May you never take one single breath for granted
God forbid love ever leave you empty handed
I hope you still feel small
When you stand beside the ocean
Whenever one door closes, I hope one more opens
Promise me you'll give faith a fighting chance

And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance
I hope you dance, I hope you dance

I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance
Never settle for the path of least resistance
Living might mean taking chances
But they're worth taking
Lovin' might be a mistake
But it's worth making
Don't let some hell bent heart
Leave you bitter
When you come close to selling out, reconsider
Give the Heavens above
More than just a passing glance

And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance
I hope you dance

Who wants to look back on those years and wonder
Where those years have gone

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Teaching in Rural Alaska: Part 1

For those of you who might be interested in teaching in rural Alaska (aka "Bush" Alaska), I have included some links that you may or may not find valuable. Researching potential villages is extremely important when thinking of teaching in remote Alaska. As always, I am happy to answer any questions about MY experience. Happy trails!

http://www.eed.state.ak.us/DOE_Rolodex/schools/ReportCard/RCDetails0209.cfm?School_Number=550010%20&%20School_Year='200809'

http://www.firstalaskans.org/documents_fai/04k12calista.pdf

*Please note that these may not reflect the most current years, but it is something to add to your research. Also, take into consideration that 4+ years ago, the staff and administration differed from that of today... as is often, but not always, the unfortunate case in rural AK.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Those You Surround Yourself With

"In life you will find people who are selfish, hateful, and inconsiderate. You can't change people, but you can change how much they are a part of your life." ~Author Unknown

This quote is smooth to my ears. There came a distinct moment in my life when I can recall coming to this realization. We do not have to be held in contempt or bondage under anyone's negativity or bullying, for lack of a better term. Sometimes this may mean that we have to be the "outcast," but the result that comes far surpasses what we might think will be loneliness. Negative people are so toxic... as cliche as it sounds, "misery loves company." I refuse to be a part of fostering that kind of energy, if I can help it. There is great cleansing that comes with removing draining people from one's life... it is a liberating thing. "You can't change people, but you can change how much they are a part of your life." Completely true!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The "Leaf of a Bird"

I saw a student in the hallway today. He saw something moving on the floor... he wasn't sure what it was, but he went after it. He picked it up and said, "It's not a bug. It's the leaf of a bird." Lol. It was a feather. So darn cute! Have I told you that I love my job? It's been a great New Year! I am on a natural high and it has been one blessing after another. Quyana agayun!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Shooting Star

Tonight, the sky was so clear... amazingly beautiful. The constellations were visible just standing on my porch... and, the Heavens sent me a shooting star! I am certain it was in answer to my prayers tonight :) For some reason, seeing that star reminded me of a song my elementary music teacher taught us in 5th or 6th grade... here is what I remember:

"Like a snowflake falling to the ground... individual. I am proud of who I am, proud of what I am, proud of where I'm going. My life is my life, and I have the power to be. I can reach my own brass ring, and pull it for me. Pull it for me!" 

Thanks, Mr. Baranow ;)

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Sun Bathing in January in Chevak

With Elder, Julia Cholok. She speaks very little English and I speak VERY little Cup'ik, yet we have so much laughter in our "conversations!" She's a doll.
 Sun bathing on my porch on a sunny Sunday afternoon.
 New teacher, Kelly, and her husband stop by for a visit. Nice addition to Chevak.
The view from my front porch. I just love moments like these... taking it all in...

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Advice by Ilam Shamir

Some words of wisdom found on the walls of my friends' bathroom ;)


Advice from a Moose
Think big
Spend time in the woods
Eat plenty of greens
Hold your head up high
Stay on track
Keep your nose clean
It's okay to be a little wild!


Advice from a Polar Bear
Live large
Be thick-skinned
Sniff out opportunities 
Learn some good icebreakers
Appreciate long winter nights
Be fearless
Keep it cool!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Powerful Song...

Sara Bareilles has such an amazing voice! 

Saturday, January 1, 2011

What a life!

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New Year's Morning 2011... a bit stormy and, we are on honey buckets :) For those of you who aren't familiar with this... we are going to the bathroom in buckets and dumping the waste afterwards. Yes, this is my wild little life... but, I love it! Happy New Year!