December 2nd - It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!
I am still busy preparing for my First Friday,
but I finally see the light at the end of the tunnel. I even had
time today to write my family newsletter. I haven't printed it,
or created my holiday cards, but I hope to get to all of that at
least by the 15th. It will be good to breathe freely again - and
get back on a regular sleep schedule. I've got my days and nights
mixed up, but it's working out OK. With Steve being on day work
this week, he has to get up at 3:30am. I just stay up until he gets
up. He gets the bed to himself, which leads to a more restful sleep
for him, and I get the silence of the wee hours to work uninterrupted.
Even the dog and the cat are asleep!
December 7th - First Friday!!!
tonight's the night! I've been preparing for this diligently over
the last month. I've lost many hours of sleep, stressed, prepared
photos for display, and managed to write my Christmas newsletter,
address my holiday cards, and package up and ship off gifts. But....
I am finished! I have one more load to take to the post office today,
and I can officially declare all of the hustle-bustle of December
and the holiday season over!
I went online today to see if there was any mention of me on the
Downtown Fairbanks website, and there was my name! It's quite surreal.
It's also hard to believe that my photography will be on display
for the public to see. It's one thing to have my work published
here on my website, or in my gallery, but another to have it under
the scrutiny of the community. I hope that my passion, and my love
for Alaska, shines through. That's really what it's all about...
sharing the beauty of this world with others.
December 12th - First Friday and a Trip to the BIG City!
Finally... I can relax and slow
down the pace somewhat.
The main event: First Friday. What a fabulous night I had! There
was a lot of foot traffic through the store, and much interest in
my photography. I sold most of my note cards, and more prints than
I anticipated. All in all, it was a successful first time for me
and I'm thrilled. I couldn't have done it without the support (both
emotionally and financially) of my local friends - who came by to
say hello, pick up a few items for themselves or for gift giving,
and to boost my spirits immensely. I am truly blessed to have so
many awesome people in my life. Joanne (owner, Willow Creek Clothing)
has asked me to display my work again for the First Friday in May.
I plan to take her up on the offer.
December 19th - What is COLD?
If the thermometer had been an inch longer we'd all have frozen
- quoted in Mark Twain and I, Opie Read -
The winter cold has arrived. It's late, by seasonal
standards, but we knew we couldn't escape it forever. It arrived
a couple of days ago, when the gauge on our big outdoor thermometer
started dipping below 0F and then -10F and then -20F and then....
As I type this, it is -40F (which ironically is also
-40C). Can you imagine it being that cold? Before I moved to Alaska,
I would have never believed that I'd see temperatures this extreme.
And yet I've seen colder. There's that day in 2004, when I snapped
the photo of the Fred Meyer sign at 2:36pm and it was reading -55F.
Some say that it actually got colder later that same day. All I
know is that in the split second I was standing outside my car,
trying to focus my camera on that sign, I felt the breath freeze
in my chest, and my lungs tighten up painfully.
December 20th - A New Video Page
I've created a video page in this
journal, where you can go to view most of my videos in one place.
I will still continue to place videos in individual entries while
journaling, but I am also going to include them on the VIDEOS
page for the convenience of my readers. Not all of my videos are
included there. Some of my older videos can still only be viewed
at my YouTube site. But I have included those of which I put a lot
of work and time into - mainly my photo slide shows.
I don't want to end this entry without sharing another glimpse
of the Northern Lights with you all. Last night we had a bright
moon, and I caught a glimpse of the white light filtering through
the blinds. I opened my vertical blinds and set my camera up on
my tripod so I could get a photograph of our backyard with the moonlight
shining so brightly on the snow.
As I was shooting the yard, I happened to notice a band of green
moving overhead. There was no way I was going to put on all my winter
gear and go outside to get photos - not at -41F! I decided I'd try
to get photographs through the sliding glass door.
I managed to get three shots off before they grew dim and then
disappeared altogether. I don't know if they came out after that,
but I was quite surprised by what I managed to capture - especially
through sliding glass doors. What a way to watch the lights - nice
and toasty warm!
Through the sliding glass doors
Yard - through the doors
Green lights - through the doors
December 24th - It's Christmas Time in the City
May the spirit of Christmas
bring you peace,
The gladness of Christmas give you hope,
The warmth of Christmas grant you love.
December 31st - The End of a Year
It's hard to believe
that 2007 is coming to an end. The year has flown by, as always.
I hope you all had a lovely Christmas. Steve and I
spent Christmas with our friends Randy and Celeste and had a fantastic
time. Celeste is a closet culinary expert. She watches the cooking
channel religiously and DVRs anything she can't watch. She must
have been a chef in another life, because she is awesome.
Now, those who know me fairly well know that I am the pickiest
eater alive. However, my husband is not. While I was very selective
with what I tasted, Steve enjoyed everything Celeste prepared. Her
appetizer spread was amazing! Those things I enjoyed: pureed turkey
(pate texture) with cranberry spread on little toasted finger sandwiches,
ham wedges with spicy mustard served on smashed and fried plantain
banana crisps, baked brie cheese in phyllo turnovers. Steve loved
all the seafood (crab, shrimp, bacon wrapped scallops) and even
indulged in sweetbreads kabobs (*sticks tongue out*). They kept
telling me that I was missing out on some great food, but I didn't
feel bad about that. I told them that meant there was more for them!
©2007 Susan L Stevenson