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Thursday, September 28, 2006

Baby Nora Has a Green Thumb!

After distracting Nora several times from digging in the indoor plants, it was time to let her explore the dirt outside. In a year or two I imagine she'll be in the garden helping her dad weed and pull carrots in the fall! Many people in the family garden, including her dad, her mom (occasionally), her Great-Grandma Nana in Massachusetts, Granny Emmy in Maine and Grandma Cathy in she'll have lots of great role models!!

Its Bathtime!!

After her dirt digging session it's straight to the bathtub for Nora!

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

More Goat Hunt

Another picture from the goat hunt. Here is Patrick climbing back up a hill after checking down below for goats. Goat hunting is a lot of scrambling up and down in steep places. In the background is Kizhuyak Bay and the native village of Port Lions (barely visible on the far shore).

Sunday, September 24, 2006

September Goat Hunt in Kodiak's Backcountry

This past week Patrick and Mike Sirofchuck (a local friend and retired school teacher) ventured miles into the back country to get a goat! Mission Accomplished. It was a LONG hike....
This is the view after they climbed out of the valley where they got the goat. In the distance, on the right, near the blue ocean and dwellings is where they hiked to that night. They made it out of the wilderness right at sunset. Phew.
Patricks quote was "It was like outdoor braille following our trail at dusk". Patrick surprised me at home when he arrived at 10PM....I thought for sure they'd be camping another night!

On Kodiak, the goats live in very rugged country. This is the valley where Patrick and Mike found their goat. Patrick packed the meat out, and Mike packed the hide. Luckily, it was a small goat. Now it comes time to package and process the meat into steak chunks, burger, sausage and canned goat. (It is better than it us!!)

Sunrise on the morning of the goat hunt. Patrick and Mike left the day before and camped over night.
They hiked 8 miles into the back country to get to the region where Mike held the permit to hunt a goat.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Mini Ben & Jerrys!!Best Invention Since Sliced Bread!

I discovered mini Ben & Jerry's at the local grocerer! What a FANTASTIC idea! They are small serving size portions. Patrick was quite skeptical. He said, "Oh, so you eat four of those instead of eating a regular size Ben & Jerry's?". He knows his Zoya very well! (Let it be known, however, that I only ate ONE choc. fudge brownie MINI ice cream tonight.) :)

(I also saw that they have ice cream locks in case you have someone in your living quarters sneaking bites of your ice cream. Check it out online. They're made by Ben and Jerry's. Perfect gift for an ice-cream-holic in your life who has problems with other people sneaking bites of their favorite frozen goodie!)

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Patrick and Nora on Spruce Cape Beach Walk

This morning we took a family hike out to Spruce Cape Point and Beach. I am so thrilled to have Patrick carry Nora on his back, as I am nearing the point with pregnancy where it is not comfortable to carry her in the backpack. I prefer walking with Nora in the stroller now!
The weather was clearing a bit during our walk, then a big storm rolled in this afternoon. Patrick went silver salmon fishing in his kayak this afternoon on Buskin lake.

Leo Saltonstall--Ella and Dicky's Boy

He is 16 months old now...

Ella e-mailed me a recent photos of Leo and I just can't believe how much he has grown up. He is more like a little guy and less like a baby.
Gosh it is hard to think that Leo and Nora are growing up on opposite ends of the country! Thankfully with e-mail we can get recent pics of the little ones. Many people have asked if Leo and Nora look a lot alike-as they are "double" cousins! Almost genetically similar as siblings! The general consensus is that Leo looks more like a Herrnsteen and Nora looks more like a Saltonstall. Leo has blond hair, Nora brown...but they both have blue eyes!!

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Deer Meat + Spices + Grinding= Yummy Burger!

This evening Patrick and Gregg processed 60 pounds of deer meat into burger. This was from deer from multiple hunts this fall. Some beef and pork fat is added to it for consistency and flavor, as the fat is cut off the deer in the processing.

Gregg and Patrick at the burger grinding station.The table is used for wrapping and labeling the burger. The meat is mixed with spices in a big container before it is put through the grinder. The result? Delicous deer burger!

Nora "helps" with the sorting process.... :)

Zoya And Alisa nursing the little ones one the back porch

Nora is 13 months old and Elias is 5 weeks old!

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

River Rafting Trip on Kodiak

Recently Patrick and 3 of his friends paddled 25 miles down a river on the south end of Kodiak. Phillip from South Africa made the long journey to Kodiak especially to see Kodiak Bears on the river! Luckily, they didn't run into very many! This left Philip somewhat disappointed, however. :)
The oxbows and twisty nature of the river made it difficult to compute 'river miles'. They floated all the way from Doughnut Lake to Bare Creek where a float plane picked them up.
Very few people float the East Fork of the Ayakulik (maybe one party every few years or so). Most people float the lower part of the Ayakulik from Bare Creek down to the sea. The little red 'C's on the map mark where they camped during their trip.


Patrick's friend Gregg hikes along a ridge in the 'Refugium'. This part of Kodiak was not covered by glaciers during the last glaciation and is known as the 'Refugium' because many species of plants and animals were able to survive here when they were wiped out by the glaciers elsewhere. Gregg and Patrick noticed that the character of the mountains is very different from what they are used to on the north end of Kodiak. It is much drier and the mountains lack the glacial cirques (bowl shaped meadows at the tops of mountains) so common on the north end.

Floating the East Fork

Patrick used inflatable canoes to float down the East Fork of the Ayakulik. Here they are floating out of the small valley where the East Fork starts and out onto the swampy flats by the main branch of the Ayakulik. This area is a huge swamp. Swans breed here, and a few of them were confused by Patrick's white teepee. From the air it looked like another huge swan to them! They would circle and honk. Patrick and his friends wanted to see the reindeer that live on the flats but never found them. The reindeer are domisticated animals that escaped and went wild in the 1940s.


Patrick returns to camp (the white teepee visible along the river) after a long hike into the mountains near the river. The fireweed turned red early this year.

Dolly Varden Trout

Patrick recently returned from a float trip down the East Fork of the Ayakulik on the south end of Kodiak. They caught Dolly Varden trout far up the river (over 30 miles up the river) where the fish were eating the eggs of spawning salmon.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Fiber Optic Installation Boats in Mill Bay

We've seen lots of excitement here in Mill Bay right from our front porch. The fiber optic cable has been laid in Mill Bay. Its been a 4 day they've had to dig up the bay to lay the cable, as well as Mill Bay beach.

The flood lights and tractors have been going all night on Mill Bay beach for several nights as the crews work away. There have been several boats involved in the process (see photos) as well as divers responsible for making sure the cable is anchored to ocean floor. This is Kodiak history in the making! I don't think we've ever had this much excitement right off our house in Mill Bay. And perhaps this cable will take care of the pesky phone delay/lag time that we experience during long distance calls.

Below is the website on the story. There is a 2.5 minute long story you can listen to on it. Its pretty cool! For all of you folks who are familiar with Kodiak, you may enjoy listening to it.

Mill Bay Beach Gets Dug Up for the Fiber Optic Cable

The crews have been working day and NIGHT on digging the beach up for burying the cable. Its quite the process!!