Hello 30!

This year I turn 30. What?! How did that happen?! Does anyone ever feel like they have no idea what they have been doing with their life when a milestone birthday hits? Yeah, me too.

This year I’m going to hit the big 3-0 and I’m feeling like I’ve done nothing and like I’m not old enough to have already done/have what I have. By my birthday I will have already had an 11-year career, been married for 11 years, raised a 9-year-old son and a 4-year-old daughter, and bought a house. I feel like I have already achieved so many external markers of what I’m supposed to do by the age of 30 but somehow I feel like I’ve done nothing at all.

When 2021 started I was completely freaking out about turning 30. But now that the big birthday is just a month away I am starting to feel a little more of a sense of calm about it. I have been doing a lot of thinking of why am I so caught up on what I am supposed to be doing? Some days I feel like I should be doing more but honestly with the pandemic I am doing what  I can to keep the day to day life moving forward. Luckily Daniel and I have been able to work from home since March of 2020. Though,child care and school have been huge struggles for us just like most other parents in the world. I could go on and on about all the things good and bad with the pandemic, but that would be off topic so, let’s move on. 

Why does 30 seem like such a big deal? It made me think of what I thought my life would be like as an adult. I imagined myself being a mom (check), having a husband (check), and being a teacher (not quite). But of course I didn’t imagine myself any older than like 25. So, as I go into my 30s things seem so unknown which is a little unsettling. As I type that last part I keep thinking of one of my favorite podcasters, Kaitlyn Bristowe, and how she says your 30s are the best decade of your life, so I am going to go with that! 

I just want you to know, if you’re going through it you’re not alone! We can do this together!

With love until next time!

How I Came to Alaska

One of the most unique stories about my life is how I came to live in Juneau. I hope you enjoy!

D.I.P.A.C. Fish Hatchery where it all began!

I came to Juneau when I was 4 years old and my brother was 6 months old. My parents decided to take us on a road trip from Texas to Alaska in our Geo Tracker. Yep, a tiny Geo Tracker, my parents are crazy! We ended up in Juneau on July 6th, 1995. Just a few days later, on a rare, beautiful sunny day, we went to the local fish hatchery and fished for dog salmon. I was sitting there with a fishing pole in my hand, looking down the Gastineau Channel, thinking “this is amazing”. It just felt like home. Pretty profound for a 4-year-old, right? I turned to my parents and said “Mama, Papa, I want to live here for the rest of my life.” My parents poo-pooed the idea initially, but it got my mom thinking. Later that day, while my brother was sleeping and I was happy as a clam on the dock fishing, she decided to go for a drive. When she came back, she told my dad she had found jobs for both of them at the Baranof Hotel. He would be a waiter during the day, and she would work the front desk at night. Next thing I knew, we were calling my grandma to say we weren’t coming home. That seems like a rash decision, but there was good reason for it. That’s a story for a later post…

Jump forward 25 years and here I am, still living in Juneau. I married my high school sweetheart, Daniel  11 years ago. We have 2 amazing children; Jason who is 9, and Natalie who is 4. I was lucky enough to marry into a family who had a cabin just a few miles away from town. We are down at the cabin nearly every weekend during the summer and frequently during the winter as weather allows.

Here’s a little more about Juneau:

 Juneau Alaska is in Southeast Alaska which borders British Columbia, Canada. Juneau is a completely land locked town which means, the only way in or out of Juneau is either by taking one of the Alaska state ferries or flying. Want to learn a little more about the history of Juneau check out the Wikipedia page (here)

Until next time!

In Sight of the Mountain Book Review

Let’s do something new, write a book review! I’m not a big reader, which is something is should probably work on doing more of, but when I was given Jamie McGillen’s Book “In Sight of the Mountain” as a Christmas gift and I was excited to read! I knew I would probably like reading it because I like history and young adult novels since they are a great way for me to get out of my head and the current daily stresses. I enjoyed this book immensely! I think you will too.

Synopsis:

In Sight of the Mountain is a young adult historical fiction based in Seattle Washington in the early 1900’s. This book follows the main character Anna Gallagher as she dreams of becoming the first woman to summit Mt. Rainer. When Anna chooses to attempt to summit the mountain, she decides she must prepare in secret in fear of the disapproval friends and family. She is also afraid they will try to prevent her from attempting the summit as it is not what ladies do.

About the Author:

Let me introduce the author, Jamie McGillen. She was born in Juneau Alaska but moved to Seattle Washington area when she was young. She has written two books, In Sight of the Mountain and In Light of the Summit, which are the first two books of the Rainer Series. For these books she has spent countless hours doing research on how life was in the early 1900’s to ensure the accuracy of the time period, mountaineering gear, and the societal pressures on women to marry well and early. She is currently writing the third book in the series. To learn more about Jamie and purchase her books go to jamiemcgillen.com.

 The Review:

The story starts off in Seattle June 6th, 1889 the day of the great Seattle fire. Jamie’s description of early Seattle paints the picture as if you were walking through the streets yourself. Anna Gallagher’s spunk and determination are evident as she tries to help with the fire. Though out the book Anna’s love for her family, the mountain, and her love interest, Ben a crew member on her brother’s fishing boat, are constantly pulling her heart in different directions. Through it all Anna stays true to herself.

Some of the things I liked about this book was that it kept my attention. I would sit and read multiple chapters until I HAD to put it down. I couldn’t wait to keep reading! Jamie paints such a vivid picture of how life was during the time period you felt like you were there watching it all play out. Jamie shows her love of Alaska with casting Anna’s brother Levi as a fisherman who fishes for Halibut in Alaskan waters. It made me smile every time she mentioned his ship being in port I recognized by living in Alaska myself. This story doesn’t stray from some of the realities of life for young single women of Seattle. One of Anna’s dearest childhood friend, June, is a prostitute at one of the city’s most respected brothels.

As I write I keep trying to think of things I didn’t like about the book and honestly, I can’t think of a single thing. This book is an easy read. It kept my attention, there is adventure, a love story, and history. What more could you ask for? Once I finish the next book In Light of the Summit, yes, I will be reviewing this one too, I will definitely be reading this again! As long as the 3rd books isn’t out yet. I want to say a big thank you first to the Author Jamie McGillen for writing these books. They are a true treasure. Second to Jamie’s mother Beth for sending me the book! Until next time!