Most years I prefer to downplay my birthday and simply get it over with, but this year I decided to use it to my advantage. I’ve been wanting to host a cooking competition with family friends for eons, and this was the perfect way to make it happen! The evening was loosely based on the Food Network show Chopped, where chefs face off in head-to-head … Continue reading Chopped
It’s often said that in Alaska, you choose your family. And it’s true. Many of us live thousands of miles from the families we were born into, so friends become a proxy for this pivotal role. This is my Alaskan family. We jokingly refer to ourselves as the McCoxlers, and we’ve been part of each other’s holidays, birthdays, and every days for decades. Our children … Continue reading Eat the Chocolates
My friend Nancy has a way of drawing me waaaaay out of my comfort zone. In hindsight, this has been going on for nearly two decades. Exhibit A: In our pre-kid days we spent a leisurely afternoon hiking the Winner Creek trail in Girdwood, only to cap it off by spontaneously launching ourselves off Mt. Alyeska in tandem paragliders. I wish I had better photos, … Continue reading Branching Out
I vividly remember the first time I stumbled across a quote by George Bernard Shaw: “He who can does; he who cannot, teaches.” Boy did that ruffle my non-existent feathers. I wanted to peck his little Nobel Prize to pieces. I’ve been in education for over 20 years, and here’s what I know to be true: Teachers find self worth by sharing knowledge, not attaining … Continue reading Best Bagels, Best Teachers
We took a day trip with the Boxlers on a gloriously calm, sunny Sunday. We hit the 10:30 tunnel to Whittier, along with many other people. There were long lines at the launch! We were also surprised that all the fee stations now took credit cards instead of cash envelopes. It’s still $20 to launch/retrieve. We headed to the rookerie to look at birds before … Continue reading Boat Log 9: Boxlers on Board!
Last week was all about hiking, and the grand finale was an 8.8 round trip hike to Rabbit Lakes. The more I explore new trails in the Chugach National Forest, the more I understand why so many people slap “I Heart Chugach” bumper stickers on their Subarus. Summers like this make me wonder why the entire planet isn’t migrating to Alaska. There is an infinite … Continue reading I Heart Chugach: Rabbit Lakes
“Keep close to Nature’s heart… and break clear away, once in a while, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean.” ~John Muir, Alaska Days With John Muir, 1915 A few weeks ago I asked my dear friend Nancy, “If we could do anything to celebrate your birthday, what would it be?” It took her a few days to answer honestly, but … Continue reading Gratitude Day 3: The Gift of Hatcher Pass
We avoided the crowds and spent the 4th of July with friends at their family cabin on a lake. Sunscreen was mandatory on this incredibly warm weekend, with temperatures pushing 80 degrees. Usually I take our children back to Nebraska in the summer so they can enjoy outdoor swimming, but on days like this it’s actually possible right here in Alaska! The kids bounced between … Continue reading No Fireworks Necessary