Author Archive

Alaskan Wildflowers


Summers are short and sweet in Girdwood, but there is no shortage of colorful flowers! I’m forever admiring the lush green landscape punctuated perfectly with plentiful wildflowers. Alaska’s long summer days and varied climate create the ideal environment for a stunning variety of flowers. There are over 1,500 species of wildflowers in Alaska and here are few of my favorites:

Fireweed

Alaska’s most well known wildflower is the Fireweed. This vibrant flower blooms in late summer and autumn. Roadsides throughout the state are painted in magnificent hues of pink and magenta. The plant blooms first at the bottom, and as legend has it, once the blossom reaches the top, the six-week countdown to winter begins.

Forget Me Not

This little perennial is the Alaskan state flower.  They are fragrant in the evening only.  These flowers are small and sweet, which is ironic for such a giant and rugged state, don’t you think?

Lupine

Lupine is a plant with bluish-purple flowers.  I first noticed this flower when biking one afternoon.  I was so taken by the vibrant blue I had to stop and get a closer look.  Lupine live in open habitats and bears love to eat the roots.  In my opinion they are one of the most beautiful plants, but also poisonous.


Clustered Bellflower

Early July I noticed these spike-like flowers in front of our house.  I’ve enjoyed filling my vase with these sturdy beauties ever since. Tidbit: put a penny in the vase to help keep your flowers upright.


Wild Geranium

Native Wild Geranium are light blue, purple, or pink, and blossom from spring to mid-summer. I noticed these pretties last month, but they seem to be on their way out.

Blanket Flower

These red and yellow “pinwheel” flowers remind me of the red poppies in the Wizard of Oz.  I love the punch of red.


Showy Daisy

This daisy is one heck of a cheerful solitary flower!  These blooms are frequently spotted around town weaved into hair or tucked behind an ear.

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Road Trip Stats

After 24 days on the road, we finally arrived in Girdwood, Alaska.

Whew!

It was a monster of a drive, a real party of the senses that required marathon concentration, oodles of cash and a concrete ass.  But arriving in Girdwood was a dream come true and the successful ending to a road trip I hope never to forget.  As we adjust to our new home I wanted to share a few stats from the journey…


Ode to Moms

It’s mother’s day weekend and I can’t let it pass by without a tribute to my mom Debbie. She’s one of the most beautiful, talented, selfless, and loving women I know. I have been blessed with such a wonderful mom and best friend. Whenever something good, bad, or indifferent happens it’s always mom I think of to call. The older I get, the more I realize how we are alike. We are known to finish each other’s sentences, and to say the same word at the same time. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I’ve learned many things from mom throughout the years. Some of her words of wisdom and advice have stuck, here are a few empowering things my mom has taught me:

– When you know better, you do better
– Everything will eventually be okay and to truly not sweat the small stuff – it’s all just temporary anyway
– Unconditional love, both with words and actions
– She instilled this inner strength that has driven me throughout my life. It was that strength that fueled this Alaskan adventure
– To celebrate life, from small joys to life changing moments

I love you and wish I was there to celebrate you today. I’ll make sure to have a Bloody Mary in your honor!

***

While some moms run errands, my mom runs half marathons.
While some moms ride shotgun, my mom rides her bike across the country.
While some moms beat eggs, my mom beats cancer.

Last Christmas I was flipping through childhood photos… Mom and me in the Sierra Nevadas.  Mom and me camping out.  Mom and me swimming in a lake.  It’s no wonder why I’m writing this post from Alaska.  Anyone who knows me knows how proud I am to be my mother’s son.  Sue Wotring is a tireless adventurer — a sweet, smart and strong woman who I truly respect and love dearly.  From the bottom of my hiking boots to the bottom of my heart, happy mothers day.