Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Kenny & Candice

Did you know I have a little "brother"?
His name is Kenny and he looks nothing like me.

Kenny and I were both Greeks at Purdue. When he got initiated into the AGR house, I was his "big sis". Never having been a big sister before, I took full advantage of the opportunity and made Kenny do all kinds of exciting and stupid things like any fun big sister does. 

I won't share the details of initiation night. And I'll put a lot of money on the fact that Kenny won't either; it's hard to retell a story you don't remember to begin with. Long story longer, we both survived to laugh about it. 

Fast forward past Harry's, graduation, real-world jobs and life in general to a phone conversation just two months ago:

Me: Hello?!
Kenny: Hey Big Sis.
Me: How are ya, Lil' Bro?!
Kenny: I'm good. Hey, we were just out here with the cows and that reminded me of you.
Me: .........
Kenny: I mean, that I was supposed to call you...

Ahh, Kenny - a man of few, yet powerful words. 

I was so excited to see Kenny and his fiancé Candice. We met in a tiny town (my new favorite Jean's Boots gem) the size of my office for their engagement session. I knew I wanted something rural and rustic. The abandoned grain elevator, old store fronts and open, airy spaces fit this country couple perfectly.

Enjoy just a few photos of Kenny & Candice...

Isn't she absolutely beautiful?

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Friday, August 24, 2012

Alaska III: Eagles and Ice

Per Cody's request, on day 5 of our Alaskan Adventure we took a boat tour to find and observe wildlife. 
Find and observe wildlife?? 
I just did that. 
Last fall. 
I found chipmunks in my attic. 
I observed the damage those crazy little squirrel-cousins can do. 
I never want to "find and observe" again.  

Originally, Cody wanted to go on the 9-hour tour. 
I politely reminded him that even Gilligan barely survived a 3-hour tour. I just didn't think I had it in me.
So we compromised (I'm slowly learning this concept) and opted for the 6-hour boat tour. 

I spent the first ten minutes of the 6-hour tour half pouting/half wondering if I'd look anything like Mary Ann Summers from Gilligan's Island when this deal was all done and over with. 

Life Lesson:
If you aren't there at the beginning of the 6-hour tour, you sure as heck won't be there at the end of it. 

I survived. 
And truly enjoyed it.
Below are a few of the shots from that Saturday in Alaska. 

Seward, Alaska

Everything is larger than life in Alaska. 
Mountains so high the clouds don't allow you to see the peak. 

The original great divide?

These sea lions got spooked by the boat and launched themselves into the water!

When he wasn't outside leaning over the edge of the boat searching for whales, you could find Cody creeping on the captain, secretly hoping he would notice and invite CS to join him in the navigation. You would not believe the number of 9-year-olds Cody dominated for this poll position...


What an awesome little hide-away this would be.

One of the most amazing things I've ever seen in my life. 
This glacier is one mile wide. 

Ice, meet Rock. 
Rock, meet Ice. 
Together, you will change the world. 

Look at the contrast between the top of the rigid glacier and the green, snow-capped mountain behind it.

We were able to see the glacier "calve" - 
where ice chunks break off and fall into the ocean. The sound of the ice breaking, then hitting the freezing water sounded just like the loudest thunder ever to roll through Greens Fork, Indiana- it was incredible! 

Never again will I sit on my front porch swing and listen to the thunder 
and not think of this incredible trip to Alaska. 

Alaska Adventurists

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Alaska II: Salty Dawgs and Steeples

This week I wanted to share more photos with you from our Alaskan adventure. 
Enjoy today's not-so-Wordless Wednesday...

The Salty Dawg Saloon - one of the most unique bars I've ever been to - see more of it's awesome interior here

We left our mark 3,280 miles from Greens Fork, Indiana. 

A historic Russian church, placed beautifully on a hill over-looking the coast and five volcanos. 

We had to explore...

If you walk all the way to the end of this path, you fall off a cliff. 

Probably not the best-placed political sign. 

Later this week I'll post the best photos of all - 
glaciers, whales and wildlife - stay tuned!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Alaska: The Southbound Drive

Alaska is incredible. 

Our trip thus far has included a rugged road trip, lots of coffee, lost luggage and very little rain. We've loved every minute. 

Yesterday we drove from Anchorage to Homer on the Kenai Peninsula - an absolutely beautiful drive.

This morning I'm sitting outside a tiny (lawn mower shed turned into a) coffee shop, bumming wifi under a tin awning so I can share some photos. There are four local men sitting on the front porch of the shack, two on a bench and two in rockers - they're telling fishing stories. The scene is everything you would picture in Greens Fork, Indiana except these guys are talking about 57-pound Halibut and no one is questioning the size. 

Everything is larger than life in Alaska. 

Cody and Chris are on a fishing excursion for the majority of the day and Sharee and I are going to drive down to Homer and be tourists. 

Before we go I wanted to share just a few photos from day one in Alaska - Please know, 
These photos don't do it justice. 

 - I hear the train a comin'
It's rollin' 'round the bend - 

The clouds rolled in around 9:00PM last night, blocking any view of the mountains. 
It is dark only 4-5 hours a day in Alaska this time of year. 

Homer Spit