Sunday, April 21, 2013

Christmas to Now: Project Catch Up

So...we have been pretty busy, but honestly I have been lazy when it comes to updating the blog.  I think about it often and then I end up reading or catching up on TV episodes of Psych or The Walking Dead.  Today I decided to update the blog and let people see some of the things our family have been up to for the last five months.

Christmas 2012

A tradition at Brevig Mission School is to put on an annual Christmas program.  Each grade level teacher picks a song or skit for their students to learn and perform.  This year the kindergarteners or kinderfriends as I like to call them performed the traditional Rudolf the Red Nose Reindeer.  Claire's class did a line dance to a funny version of Jingle Bells, the middle schoolers acted out the song Can't Wrap This and the whole school did a flash mob of Pamyua's Bubble Gum.  Below are some pictures from this event.

 For our December school wide art project we made 3D snowflakes and hung them in the cafeteria.  It made the school festive for the holidays.

 During the Christmas holidays the city of Brevig host nightly Eskimo games, dancing, and raffles.  The above picture is of some of the Eskimo dancing.  To take a break from the village we went  for a few days to Anchorage.  While in Anchorage we drove to Seward to meet some friends of ours -- the Rudstroms.  It was great to get a break, eat out, go to the movies, and do some shopping.  Not to mention see some great friends.
Cate and Claire in Seward.

Cate, Claire, Tizita, and Harold at the Seward aquarium.

Two of our teachers became moms for the second time this school year.  We had a baby shower for them.  Angie adopted her second baby, Levi.  He was born in late November, three months early.  We had the shower a week after he has able to come home.  Liz was 8 months pregnant with her son Russell who was born around the first part of April.  
Angie and Levi

Liz and soon to be Russell
Our school wide art project for this month was a giant heart.  The heart was created with handprints from each of our students.
Kindergarten Happenings
I have enjoyed my eight little sweet hearts this year.  They have been the easiest class I have taught in fifteen years.  We have had a blast this school year.  Below are some pictures illustrating our adventures.

Living in Alaska affords students opportunities that kids in the lower 48 don't all get.  One of those is cross country skiing.  Our school has skis for all students.  I have been taking the kinders out every Friday when the weather is good to practice balancing on skis.  We don't use poles, yet because we are learning to balance and move our feet.  Can you believe a girl from Georgia is teaching kids to ski?  Yeah, me either.

Cate has a hard time keeping her skis straight, but she doesn't give up!
 Sledding in Brevig is called sliding.  I took the class to the lagoon to slide.  We slid on plastic sleds owned by the school.  We then wrote a poem about sliding.  We had a blast.

Damien is so cute!  I had to post this picture of him in his parka made by his grandmother.  

Cate has fun wherever she goes! 
We made Easter bonnets for our Easter Parade. 

Next Year
So the question a lot of people have is...are you coming back.  The answer is YES!  We prayed for several months and believe that God wants us here for another year.  We are excited about next school year, and ask that those of you who have been praying for us to continue.  I will be moving up to 2nd and 3rd grade next year.  This will be a challenge due to having to teach two grade levels, but I am excited for the opportunity.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Turkey, birthdays, accidents, and daylight or lack there of

To celebrate Thanksgiving I decided that our school should create a thankful turkey.  I got the idea to do a school wide art project while at an art workshop in Unalakleet.  Each student in the school was given a feather on which to write what they were most thankful for.  We then collected the feathers and made a gianormous (I love the movie Elf) turkey.  Here is the Brevig Mission Thankful Turkey.  Stay tuned for our next school project.

On November 28, Cate turned 6.  The day before her birthday she got a pair of shoes in the mail from her Nanna that were a little too big.  She said, "Tomorrow when I wake up they will fit becasue I will be 6 and my feet will be bigger."  I love that!! 

One morning on the way to school I tripped over Mocha's dog lead and fell six steps to the icy ground.  My right leg took the majority of the impact.  My leg and foot swelled and turned blue.  After being in pain for several days John finally made me fly to Nome to have a doctor look at it.  It was just a bad sprain so they gave me a splint and sent me home on a plane the same day.

The days are getting shorter here in Alasaka.  I have been taking pictures from my classroom to show everyone.  When we go to school in the morning it is dark.   The sun starts to come up at 11am.  The sun stays on the horizon for most of the day and starts to set around 4.  We haven't made it to the solsitce yet so I will update the daylight in a couple of weeks. 
4pm As I am leaving school.
11 am 

What do you do when it is negative temperatures and dark?  Go to a friends house and have a henna party.  My friend Liz was sweet enough to invite me and the girls over and share her henna paint.  She did all of our hands.  Isn't she talented!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Voting and Romance in Bush Alaska

Last Tuesday we had the privilege of voting for the first time as residents of Alaska.  We voted for the president at the Bingo Hall.  It was very official and yet old fashioned.  First, the ladies working knew who we were, but they had to check our I.D. anyway as is required by law.  We voted on paper ballots behind an old fashioned curtain that reminded me of going to vote with my dad in the early 80s.  When we were done we got "I voted" stickers written in Inupiaq.  By the time we got home and turned on the T.V.  the election was pretty much declared. We felt a little sad that our votes were not even counted yet.
Last Wednesday, November 7th, John brought me coffee during my morning reading group.  I was so impressed that he brought me coffee that I didn't notice the huge bouquet of flowers behind his back.  My students asked me if it was our anniversary to which I replied, "No."  John promptly said it is an anniversary for something read your card.  I opened a card that read thank you for saying yes 17 years ago.  I almost started to cry.  It was the anniversary of the day John proposed to me.    My students started chanting, "John loves Misty, John loves Misty."

Now remember we live in bush Alaska, which means the flowers came from Nome on a plane.  I don't even want to know how much that cost.  I do know that I married a sweet, sweet man and I am thankful he asked me to be his wife.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

October Fun!

A Wedding in Nome

One of the best things about teaching in Brevig is meeting Jennifer Diana.  She is a wonderful English teacher from Washington.  When we first met I knew instantly that we would become kindred spirits.  She helped our family get through many lonely, cold days last school year.  She became a permanent part of our family dinners, game nights and occasional trips to Nome.

This summer, Jennifer, called with some exciting news.  She had reconnected with a friend from middle school and was sure that he was her one true love.  We were very happy for her.  Wayne came to live with Jennifer in Brevig this fall and on October 18 we had the pleasure of witnessing their wedding.  It was an intimate ceremony which included the bride and groom, his mom, me and John served as the wedding officiate.  In Alaska, everyone can marry one couple as long as you have official papers by the courts declaring you a marriage commissioner.  The marriage ceremony took place on Middle Beach in Nome.    And that is how Jennifer Diana became Jennifer Miranda!  Here are some pictures of the happy couple:)


Halloween in Brevig can be pretty scary.  Kids love to dress scary, I mean really scary!  This year our school hosted a haunted house ran by the teachers.  Claire and Cate were all ready to go until the lights went off and the music came on.  Needless to say, daddy had to take them home.  I stayed and helped, and had a blast scaring people.  Below are some pictures of Claire and Cate from the Halloween parade, and a photo of my sweet, but scary kindergarteners.

 Isn't she a precious little angel!
Claire as bloody Mary Poppins!

Signs of Winter

On November 4th we walked to the beach to see how icy the water is now.  Here is a picture of chunks of ice in the water.  It will soon be frozen solid enough to drive across to Teller.

 This time of year is Native Alaskans hunt seal.  Here is one we saw on the beach this morning.  Soon it will be skinned and butchered.  Almost every part of the animal is used.  The fur makes very warm hats and gloves while the meat is pretty yummy.
Another one for Team Jesus!!!

This month during a family devotion, Cate asked us to pray with her as she asked Jesus into her heart.  We were so proud of our little five year old.  The next day at school I took our class to the library to pick out their weekly book.  Cate picked a pop up book about Jesus.  The next day I looked up from my desk to see her sharing the book with some classmates and telling them about Jesus.  I pray that this love for God continues to grow and mature in her little heart.  

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Preparing for the Winter

We live in a village of 400 people with one tiny store.  Our store is a great place to get last minute items, but it not the place to get a weeks worth of groceries.   Plus the prices are sometimes insanely high compared to the lower 48.  So how do we get our groceries you might ask.  We order in bulk mostly from SPAN Alaska, which is a mail order grocery store for people living in remote areas of Alaska.  We also get things through Amazon and Walmart because they both now have free shipping.   If we are really in a pinch for something we email a grocery store in Nome and if the weather is good they will send it on a plane that day.  We also get a weekly box of fresh organic fruits and vegetable from Full Circle Farms in Washington.  They have been a life saver in our endeavors to keep our children on a healthy diet.

Brevig in the fall

We have been super busy with the start of school so forgive me for not updating the blog.  We are excited for Cate to start her first year of big school.  I hear her teacher is really nice too;)  It's me!  Cate has decided to go by Ella at school since it is her first name.  This has been hard for me to get used to.  Claire is now a third grader and is lucky to have Miss Amy as her teacher again this year.

The weather here has been pretty dreary.  We have had lots of rain and in late September we had our first snow.  We knew an early snow was coming because the mountains have had snow on them for a couple of weeks.  So the Moore family will be snuggling a little more this winter.

Here are some new pictures taken this fall.
Nothing says scary like a mutilated doll head at an abandoned fish camp. 

We found this bone on the beach.  We think it is from a moose.
When nature calls you will go any where;)
John's parents boating up river.
Mocha got a new rain coat!  Look at her smile!
Full moon over Brevig mountains. 
Sunset from our front stoop.  You can see Claire running int he distance.
   Another great thing about fall in Alaska is berry picking.  Wild blue, black, salmon, and cranberries grow on the tundra.  Our friends Darla and Nun took John and I berry picking one Saturday.  We picked a gallon of salmon berries while they picked three gallons.  Can you tell who the amateurs are?  Darla makes great eskimo ice cream which is made of berries, reindeer fat, and seal oil.  It is really good!