As much as I am looking forward to being back in Utah for a few years, there are many things I will truly miss about Alaska…
1-Family- Of course this one is first. Being 3,000 miles away from my family for over 5 years has been hard. But I was very blessed to marry into the family I did. Nate’s family has taken me in and treated me as their own. From sledding _________, to eating my food off of my plate, they have truly treated me as family, and I couldn’t ask for more.
2-Our Friends- We have made so many friends up here and learned some great games! I couldn’t have survived without them!
3-Coastal Trails- Basically anywhere you want to go in the city of Anchorage, there is a trail to take you there. And I’m not just talking dirt trails, I’m talking paved, often lighted, marked trails. We spent all our time on them last summer and will miss them terribly. Even better than the trails through the cities, are the coastal trails. There is nothing like a midnight sunset on the ocean with your family.
4-Sunsets after midnight- Every now and then, when Tayvin didn’t want to go to bed, we would take off to the coastal trail at 11 or so and bike till the sun set way after midnight. Being the night owl I am, I LOVED it!
5-If you go south of anchorage, you’ll find one of the prettiest scenes in the world. There’s a rather large inlet that often has whales in it. But even when there aren’t any whales, there is the reflection of the sun on the ocean and the smell of pine trees. On one side of the road is the inlet (with mountains across the way,) and on the other side of the road are the mountains with waterfalls falling so close to the road that it’s possible to get splashed while driving by. It is one of my favorite places in the world.
6-Halibut- Anywhere else I go, I just don’t dare order halibut in a restaurant. I’ve been absolutely spoiled with fresh halibut here and don’t think I will ever be converted back.
7-Playgroup-Hands down, Tayvin and I have the absolute best playgroup there is. There’s not much more to be said, it just breaks my heart when I think about not getting to spend time with Autumn, Jen, Julie, Jess, and their kids.
8-Green everything! In late spring, usually about the third week in May, everything blooms! One day you’re just driving down the road and the green just pops out at you. Even driving down the highway, one is surrounded by green everything. It can’t be beat.
9-Construction- This is not something one would usually miss. See, in Anchorage, they have to redo most roads every year or two because of perma-frost. Because of this, they seem to have a pretty good handle on it. Having grown up in Utah and driven there when I have gone back to visit, I appreciate the lack of traffic that Anchorage’s construction causes. With a few exceptions, I’ve not seen any roads that are completely blocked off for more than a day or two. We didn’t know how good we had it.
10-Love of Music- Anybody that knows me well, knows I can’t live without music. Whether it’s dancing, violin, singing, or just listening, I HAVE to have music in my life. I believe so strongly in the power of music and have felt that here in the people also. It’s nice to drive down the road, see people singing to their heart’s content in the car, and not feel alone.
11-Glacier Brewhouse- I would eat there every week if I could afford it. If you’ve eaten there (with the exception of my family who didn’t have a very good experience there,) you know what I’m talking about. I LOVE that place!
12-Comfort- Although I grew up in Utah, I did most of my maturing here in Alaska. I met my husband here and some of my best friends. I had my first child here, and I learned to truly appreciate my family here. I have lived in Alaska for over 5 years and am comfortable with it. It will be hard to leave.
13-Tuukee- Last week I made one of the hardest decisions of my life. I know that sounds a little dramatic, but Tuukee was here before Nate. When my friends left after our first summer here, I was so lonely. After a month or so, I decided to get a dog. I went to the pound one day, just to see if they had any puppies yet, and they had just gotten a batch in. Tuukee was the chubbier one that all the others picked on. I just felt for him. I paid for him, went back to work, and picked him up from the vet 3 days later. He has been with me since and has gone through everything with him. I hope and pray the kids will love him as much as I do and take good care of him.