July 11, 2010

My Alaska Excursion

This was my 3rd trip back to "The Last Frontier" since living there for the first 1.5 years of our marriage. I must say I was very surprised how nostalgic being there was for me. The first two visits weren't quite as enjoyable because one of them of I was pregnant and SICK, and the second one Toby was 3 months old and far from being an easy, portable, baby. So this time I think being so independent and free (I even used my own skymiles to pay for the ticket) definitely contributed to the melancholy and general "aw...I forgot about that" feeling while I was there.

Not only that, I forgot how much I love hanging out with my sister Beckie. We never ran out of things to talk about - or laugh about. It had been a while since I had laughed so hard that my stomach felt like it was going to implode. It was awesome. It was wonderful sister time.

My sister Beckie, adorable niece Addison, and me waiting to be seated at my most favorite pizza place of all time: MOOSE'S TOOTH! Words can't even begin describe how delicious their pizza is. My mouth waters just thinking about it. This place was definitely a favorite of mine and Nick's. Oh and the beer is good too.
So I hear. :)

Another place Nick and I use to go almost every weekend: Totem Movie Theater. It's a ghetto little movie house equivalent to Movies 8 in Provo. But it was just down the road from where we use to live in Anchorage (which was also very ghetto). Since then it has become a $3 theater. That's right, that wasn't a typo - a $3 NOT a $1 theater. Another thing about Alaska: everything costs more.

So Beck and I saw "Robin Hood" at this theater and "Eclipse" at another.

We also got pedicures together, which I was way past due for. And my sister made a new friend there too. I think the guy doing her pedi had a foot fetish or something because she got an extra 20 minutes of foot rubbing - which creeped her out but sure made me laugh. :)

Many Alaskan's have nick-named their state "God's Country." And for good reason: it's absolutely breathtaking. My pictures below won't do it justice, but it gives you an idea of how green and beautiful everything is. To me it's like taking Utah's mountains and mixing it with the green, foresty areas of Seattle, WA.

Mine and Nick's favorite place to take walks and rollerblade was the coastal trail. Isn't it gorgeous? We have seen our share of wildlife on this path: moose, fox, bald eagle, and wild rabbits. Oh I miss that trail.

It's also right next to the airport so the picture below is something you see about every 10 minutes or so. It's such a rush to have the planes fly right over your head!

This is my dramatic and intense "Eclipse" stare. I was getting tired of the same old "stand there and smile pictures." :)

Me saying my goodbyes to Addy. She was so much fun and so big! I don't get to see her very often so it was definitely a treat to spend that much time with my cute niece.

While I was there I made a mental notes of the little things that I miss about living there:

- I miss how nice everyone is. Everyone talks to each other in public places and I swear they are one of the most considerate drivers on earth. It's like night and day compare to our road raged Utahns. I really hate Utah drivers.

- I miss the "come as you are" disposition. The general fashion sense in Alaska is that there is none. Most women don't put on gobs of make-up to go to the store (like they do here). Everyone is real and natural and just themselves. Also, there is definitely a shortage on women so I definitely get a few looks from guys there (which I must admit at times really creeped me out). In Utah, I feel frumpy. In Alaska, I feel pretty being myself and I don't feel like I am constantly being sized up for my comfortable, laid-back fashion sense.

- I miss the delicious seafood restaurants. Although in general Utah's got WAY more selection for eating out, I miss the FRESH halibut, salmon, and sushi on the dinner menus. Yum.

- I definitely miss the beauty. Though I did have a funny, total Utah pride moment during Sunday School. There were talking about "barren wastelands" and someone raised their hand and said that pretty much the entire area between Idaho and Arizona was considered ugly (meaning Utah). It's funny how things like that put me in hyper protection mode over my home state. I sat there for the next 5 minutes listing to my sister all the places that are not only pretty but unique to Utah alone - as if somehow it would make a difference. And since no one knew I was visiting from Utah, in Relief Society my sister introduced me as her sister visiting from the "ugly region between Idaho and Arizona." I got a few sheepish smiles. :)

- In a weird way I miss being the minority, as far as religion goes.

- I miss seeing my sister and my niece and nephews. It's hard living 3,100 miles away from them. :(

As perfect and relaxing as the trip was, I relished being welcomed home with 80 degree weather and lots of hugs from both Toby and Nick. Toby melted my heart with his exuberant smiles and squealing "momma!" over and over again.
There is definitely no place like home.


Kristen said...

I just wanted to tell you, you are anything but frumpy!! And glad you had such a great trip. :)

Ammon and Erin said...

Debbie...you have totally renewed my desire to go to Alaska:) P.S. You look beautiful:)

Colleen said...

Sister time is the best! There's really no one on earth you can be yourself (re: silly and childish) around like a great sister. :)

I was just thinking how photogenic and gorgeous you are when I got to the "frumpy" comment. And my reaction was as follows:


Anonymous said...


So glad you came up to visit. It was fun! Hope you can come up again next summer. :)