our Friday + pics of life in Marshall

Friday morning I woke up with a headache migraine.  I had to take my Sumpatriptan pill, which works completely, but only after about two hours of feeling like complete garbage.  During those two hours I did school (I'm not sure how!) and then laid on the couch.

While I was laying on the couch, Wyatt came over and told me he was going to put his blanket on me.  With maximum effort, he was able to lay it on me and then he said, "You be careful, mommy." I think he meant "Take care."  It melted my very heart.

Then Logan & Jack thought we needed a picture of me sleeping with Wyatt's blanket. Cute boys!

Thankfully by the afternoon, my headache was gone and the sun was out in full force.  So we slipped our boots on & headed out.

This was taken from in front of my house, facing the airport road.  See that little muddy slope? Wyatt and I fell up that last week. Oops! My jeans got all dirty and his face got scraped in the brush.

The big boys love to ride bikes on the airport road, and this is the "easiest" access point. Which just means it's the closest.  Not the most convenient.

While we were playing out, (they say playing out here as opposed to playing outside and I have adopted their way) Wyatt had his afternoon snack at the bottom of the rail ramp, next to our neighbors' four wheeler.

Isn't he just scrumptious post-nap?

The twins were busy playing under the rail, collecting rocks, nails & old construction pieces while Wyatt finished his crackers.

As you can see, our house is built up off the ground.  We are on tundra, not solid ground out here, so there are support beams that can be adjusted up and down as the tundra freezes and thaws beneath us.

My mom asked me once if you could tell if you were on tundra or regular ground, and my answer is yes! Especially during non-frozen times.  The tundra is fluid, moving and shifting constantly and isn't solid at all.  In fact, sometimes, like during the spring, you can stand and hear water running underfoot.

The tundra right now boasts all kinds of beautiful flora.

The rail, for those who are wondering, is a grate-covered (see the material Wyatt is sitting on) walkway that connects all four of our houses together, with stairs on each end, and a wheelchair ramp off the front.  The grate is, in my words, "angry", which is to say it's AWFUL to fall on.  It will tear you up.  The reason it's like that is the snow falls through the holes, and ice can't (or at least generally doesn't) collect on top of it either. It's the one safe place to walk when the weather turns ugly.

These are our play pals, Sadie & Thumper.  They are our neighbor dogs, and so sweet.  The boys love them.  When they bark Wyatt says, "The dogs are ruff-in' mom! They're ruffing!"

This is the side of our house.  Water has collected in this ditch from all the rain, and the kids love to play in it.

Yesterday they used a long board to create a bridge across the "lake".  
Miraculously, neither of them fell in!

This is the view from my "front yard."  It never gets old.  And I am loving the fall colors that are beginning to arrive.  Fall in Marshall is short, maybe three weeks at most, so I drink in the yellows & oranges while they last.

Logan found a "fishing pole" (a stick with a string and a rusty old nail tied on the end) and proceeded to fish in every large puddle he could find.

When he wasn't catching anything, he asked why. 
I told him that our puddles don't have any fish, and he didn't have any bait... 
He seemed perplexed by my answer.

We slowly made our way toward the school from our house.  
Fishing & eating crackers along the way.

This is the view between the housing (this is the second set of houses, ours is the first) 
and the school (on the right).

This is the view back toward our house.

As we were meandering, we heard an airplane overhead.

Then we saw Josh driving the school van out to the airport to meet the plane.

Speaking of planes, which are always flying overhead, Peter (a fellow teacher) recently flew out to attend the Cross Country meet, and snapped this picture of Marshall from the air.  The large building is the school, and the two units to the left are teacher housing.

In this picture you can also see the slough that runs from near the airport down to the river.  This picture captures all of what is referred to as "uptown".

To see more pictures of Marshall from the air, I would check out Josh's post from his old blog.  And for more pictures from around town (taken during his first year here) click on this link.  Really, if you are fascinated by all things Marshall, I would read Josh's blog in its entirety. There aren't a lot of posts, and he isn't wordy like me, so it would be an easy read.

After seeing Logan's fishing pole, Jack wanted one, too. So we found a stick and some string and a rusty old nail, and made him his own fancy fishing pole.

Wyatt just kept working away on his snack.
I adore him in his boots, btw.

The big boys were so serious trying to catch fish.

At one point Sadie joined us and Jack goes, "We still haven't caught any, girl."  I cracked up.

They were so adorable in their teamwork,

making sure the other didn't fall in the water.

Once the plane had taken off, we saw Josh driving back to the school.  We decided to join him on a run to the post office & store.

So we walked the road behind the school, around to the parking lot.

Walking with the boys the last few sunny days has shown me what a worrier (and good big brother) Logan is.  When Jack gets too far ahead, Logan yells to him in a panicked voice to wait for mom.  And when Wyatt is too far behind, which he often is, Logan will yell, panic stricken, for me to wait up for Wyatt. 

I have had to assure him that, especially in Marshall, we aren't going far, and that I would never leave a brother behind.
So while we were out with Josh running our errands, I had the camera.
Here is a (far away) picture of the clinic.

And this is the view of Mt. Pilcher from downtown. 
(We hiked Mt. Pilcher back in October 2012)

The Post Office!

The boys peeking in the post office window at Kevin standing in line to get his packages.

Wyatt wanted to take a picture of the boxes on the dashboard of the van.  I would say 90% of our boxes come from Amazon.  

Soon our Span Alaska order should be here.  We spent over $2000 (yes, you read that right) on dry, frozen & refrigerated goods that should get us through the first half of the year.  While it is painful to spend that much at once (and it is!), it ends up being cheaper in the long run if we buy things in bulk.

And here we are at the store. 
Or, as I usually refer to it, the co op.  

Wyatt was keen on picking up some tuna, but I told him that we had plenty at the house.  

The prices at the co op are astronomical compared to the prices in the lower 48.  They had grapes last week for $16.00/bag.  A pound of cheese is $14.  A box of cereal is between $5 and $7.  And a bag of Doritos is $9.  But when you consider the journey they have made to get here, it kind of makes sense.

This week we got some chips, cereal, pepperoni for pizza, and some candy bars.  Some of what we get at the store is junk food, but I am proud to say that this year, we are not drinking soda!  

After our run to the post office & store, I took the kids to the park to play. Then we came in and fed the boys dinner.  For bedtime we all five climbed into our bed to read stories.  I love that the boys still want to be held by me.  They fought over whose turn it was to climb into my lap and get a back rub as Josh read story after story.  It was the coziest, most memorable bedtime we've had, all of us piled on top of our down comforter, reading together.

And once the kids were down, we got to have our own cozy time.

We curled up on the couch together with Josh's homemade pizza and the saddest movie I have seen in a long time.  It was the perfect end to the perfect Friday.

"Be happy for this moment.
This moment is your life."
-Omar Khayyam

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