Visiting Alaska: The OMG Beauty of It All

Hey, y'all! It's been a while. *waves* But I've been away for good reason--a ten day vacation/cruise to Alaska! : ) This was definitely a bucket list vacation for me. I've wanted to go to that part of the country for so long. Plus, there's nothing more tempting to me in the heat of Texas summer than the cool Northwest. But I have to say that the vacation far exceeded my expectations. There's beautiful. And then there's jaw-dropping, OMG, gorgeous. There were times on this trip that I couldn't believe what I was seeing was real. It was like postcards everywhere you looked.

And we got to see awesome wildlife too! A bear, some mountain goats, salmon swimming upstream, tons of bald eagles, and even whales off the side of the cruise ship. Amazing.

So, since I'm now playing catch up with work, I thought I'd just stop in and share some photos. These were all with my iPhone and have no filter on them. I couldn't put captions underneath each because I had to load the pics in gallery format, but this is from beginning to end.

We left from Vancouver on a Disney cruise then sailed to a glacier (Endicott Arm). I'm not sure how I expected a glacier to look, but wow. Then we went on to Skagway, where we took an 8 hour excursion into the Yukon Territory and took the White Pass train through the mountains. Then we went to Juneau, where hubs made me canoe FIVE MILES to a glacier. (See the picture when you scroll of hubs looking particularly smug because the view was so beautiful once we canoed over.) Last, we went to Ketchikan where we went on a rainforest walk and saw a ton of wildlife.


A panorama from the ship.

A panorama from the ship.

Have you been to Alaska? If not, what's on your bucket list?

Where Would You Move If You Could?

Newsflash: It's hot in Dallas. Effing hot. Like over 100 degrees much of the time (starting and early June this year), humid, and without the relief of rain. The only rain we seem to get comes in the way of thunderstorms, complete with kitten-sized hail and tornado threats. I am not a fan.

There is so much to love about Texas and the South in general, but the weather is not one of them. I grew up in New Orleans where I was no stranger to heat and humidity, but we at least got rain most summer afternoons to cool things off a little. Here it just stays hot. There is something wrong with it still being 92 degrees at 3am. Just saying.

So today, to escape from this oppressive heat, I'm imagining all the places I'd want to move if I could just pile my family in a moving fan and hit the road.


Here are my top three in no particular order:


Oregon - It's green and on the coast and lovely and damp.




Washington State - You have mountains, the ocean, fresh seafood, and the nice big city of Seattle to get your culture fix.


Seattle skyline

Photo by David Herrera 

And it rains...a lot. I love the rain. I know many complain about it. But rain to me is soul-cleansing. It relaxes me and makes me want to curl up with a book and just enjoy the pitter patter of it. 



Colorado - A place that actually has seasons! As opposed to here in Dallas where our seasons consists of Summer, Pits of Hell Hot, Summer, Freakish Winter with lots of ice storms and thundersleet (yes it's a word), 3 weeks of Spring where we hide in closets for much of the time listening to tornado sirens, Summer again.


Photo via Wikipedia Commons

Ah, don't those pictures look lovely? *closes eyes and tries to imagine I can't sear a steak on the sidewalk outside right now*

So where would you move if you could just pick up and go and the magical moving faires would take care of the rest? What's your favorite place you've ever lived (mine's Austin, TX) or visited?