With a new year comes a lot of excitement! The feeling of a fresh start in many areas of our lives, planning for future events and adventures, new goals, and more! Everyday is a blessing! While we welcome in the New Year don’t forget to reflect on the many blessings that you have enjoyed over the past year(s). I encourage you to initiate a conversation with your family (it can be during a family dinner, game night, or any good time when everyone is present). During this family time focus on these three things as a family to start off your New Year right. This time together will make a positive impact on the hearts and lives of each individual family member and is worth it:
Setting aside a time when everyone is together can be difficult, however it is important. It can be during a family dinner, game night, or another time when the family is together. Make sure it is a convenient time with as little distractions as possible. A time when everyone is more relaxed (not hungry, ready for bed, or trying to multi-task while having this conversation). The reflecting on memories helps create a happy bond, the tough times allow family members to see that they are not alone and have the support of people who love them, and looking ahead gives you the opportunity to improve and grow into a better individuals and family unit. If you do write down the family goals please do your best to follow through as much as possible because these goals are important to the members.
Life has a way of staying busy. Taking the time to spending reflecting on good memories as a way has a way of bringing everyone together. It may cause some laughter, tears, and healing. It is good to be reminded of the many blessings in our life and to realize that we are journeying through this life together. Yes, we make mistakes along the way, but we can can make the best of it and have a lot of fun too. Many blessings to you and your family this 2017 New Year!!!
Our family at Glacier Bay National Park!
On our Alaska cruise we were able to visit Glacier Bay National Park. It was BEAUTIFUL!!! The day started out as rainy and cool, but it cleared up as we were getting closer to the glaciers. The overcast, misty, and foggy day gave it a really neat look. Thankful for the opportunity to visit this beautiful place. We LOVED hearing the glaciers snap, crackle, pop, and watching them slide into the water.
The water was a gorgeous blue color with lots of ice chunks floating around into it. The lines and colors in the glaciers were super pretty. You could really see a lot of the dirt, rocks, and items that the glaciers brought down through the mountains and valleys with it. It was a super fascinating experience! We took a lot off pictures, but even the pictures don’t do it justice. We even saw several animals while on the boat going through Glacier Bay…a bear near a camp site with campers in a tent, otters swimming in the water, and more!
We had the privilege of visiting Glacier Bay National Park on it’s 100 anniversary! While we were cruising through Glacier Bay National Forest Rangers were giving talks and sharing information about the area. It was a very educational and fun activity for the whole family!
Overcast, but beautiful in Glacier Bay National Forest
Our family on the deck of the ship with a glacier in the background!
The water, mountains, and beaches were pretty at Glacier Bay
The fog made it have an even more distinct and beautiful look to it
A private boat in Glacier Bay
You can see from the striachens on the rock where the water ran down it into the turquoise water below
You can see the waterfalls coming down the mountains
You can see all the rocks, dirt, and items that a recent glacier moved down this mountain.. Fascinating that ice can move that many items along with it!
Huge glacier coming down between two mountains and into the water!
Love the beautiful colors and lines in the glacier
Water streaming down the mountain!
Iceberg floating in the water below us
Glacier coming around the corner of the moutnain
My favorite people – thankful for my family!
Massive iceberg, part of a glacier!
A little cave like area of the glacier
On the middle-right side of the picture you can see something that looks like a cloud near the water? That is actually a part of the ice breaking off and falling into the water. It was loud and super cool to watch!
Freezing cold, but gorgeous to see so close!
Brina hanging out on the deck and trying not to get too cool
I knew the glaciers were a pretty turquoise just didn’t expect it to be so vivid and beautiful in person!
Mesmerizing watching the water splashing along beside us. Peaceful and pretty at the same time!
Gorgeous animal, not as elegant moving on land, but amazing swimmer in the water!
We were able to visit the Alaska SeaLife Center in Seward, Alaska before cruising out of the port. The Alaska SeaLife Center is located at 301 Railway Avenue, Seward, AK 99664. It is only a couple miles from the port terminal and the city bus comes by the terminal every 5 to 10 minutes will take you to a number of places around the city of Seward (with the Alaska SeaLife Center being one of those stops). The Alaska SeaLife Center is part of the Association of Zoos & Aquariums so if you are a member of one in your area you will be able to get into the center at a reduced rate. We are part of our local Greenville Zoo which allowed us to have 50% per persons admission ticket which was a huge blessing and savings
The Alaska SeaLife Center was a lot of fun! The kids loved seeing a variety of different marine life and the exhibits were very interactive and educational. You could get fairly close to the animals and they even had a touch tank. WARNING the touch tank water is freezing cold so you won’t be able to keep you hand in it for very long. I thought my hands were going to go numb before I had a chance to touch each of the different marine critters in the tank. They had several interactive talks with the animals. We got to watch them feed, train, and care for several of the animals. The animals were content and were showing off for the guests.
It was a cool and misty day when we arrived at Seward that day. The Alaska SeaLife Center was a great task to do on a rainy day. There are a couple of places you can go outside, but you can see the majority of the center from inside. It is a wonderful place for anyone that enjoys animals, marine animals, and the opportunity to learn more about the native critters that can be found in Alaska. Thankful for an opportunity to visit the SeaLife Center. It was a hit with our kids. There are also plenty of places for adults to sit down and relax as well. It is a great activity for the whole family. The girls loved personalities of the birds exhibits, the way the HUGE octopus spread out across the glass in front of them, the Artic Seals performed tricks for treats, that the touch tank was ice cold, that the fish and other animals were very active, and that the Sea Lion loved rubbing its belly on the glass window right in front of them. It was a wonderful place to visit while we were in Seward.
Brina and Karlie in the boat at the Alaska SeaLife Center
Beautifully colored starfish. He was waving at us! Even the starfish were active while we are the center!
Small yet beautifully colored bird
Taking a swim around the pool!
Coming by to say “HELLO”!
SeaLIfe workers checking the seals out and giving them treats.
Enjoying the swim
Playing around in the pool
Doing a dance for us!
Beautiful and fast!
Watching him swim underwater from a viewing window at the bottom of his tank! Fascinating!
Showing off and diving right in front of us
He obviously was having a grand time!
Loved watching them glide so smoothly through the water
The Sea Lion rubbing his belly up against the glass in front of us. He did it several times! The kids thought it was hilarious!
Huge male octopus!
He was very active while we were there too
He decided to spread himself out across the front glass of his tank!
He was very big, pretty sure I would not be excited about running into him in the ocean! So neat to see!
Relaxing in the water with his nose out and the rest of his body just floating in the water!
Diving directly in front of us! Really loved how the animals were very interactive with their audience!
VERY COLD touch tank!!!
The freezing water was not stopping our kids from checking out the animals in the touch tank!
Beautiful and showing off for us!
He hung out near us, watching us move around the bird exhibit!
Karlie all smiles as Brina soaks in all the birds zooming around the exhibit
Brina loving time with these beautiful Alaskan animals!
Keeping one eye on us as he watches the other birds….just in case!
Super neat and comfortable boulder chairs!
Our family recently had the opportunity to travel to Alaska for our family vacation. We arrived in Anchorage in the middle of the night, slept a couple hours before getting up and heading out to explore Anchorage. One of the first stops we made was the Anchorage Museum at Ramuson Center, 625 C. Street, Anchorage, AK. The hotel driver dropped us off right outside the entrance of the museum.
The kids loved the opportunity to learn about Alaska – fFrom displays with the culture, life styles, people, and history of Alaska. The kids loved exploring the neat science and technology exhibits as well as watching the animal presentation! They had really cool boulder chairs and places for parents or grandparents to sit and relax in the common area which seemed popular for the adults! The kids loved it and it was entertaining for us as parents too.
If you have some extra time while in Anchorage and you’re traveling with your family you should check it out. If you want you can use a free locker to put your travel items in while going through the museum. Also, it is part of the Science Center Association so if you are a member of your local Science Center check to see if they are part of the Association and you will get into this museum for free! 🙂
We had a blast at this museum! They were not into the “art” gallery as much as the history, science and more kid focused rooms. They had a lot of neat history and culture regarding Alaska. It’s a great place to visit if you have kids and some time while in Anchorage, Alaska!
Karlie giggling as she tries to sneak up on me with her pillow boulder!
That’s a big pebble Brina!!!
Goof ball Karlie!
Brina and Jake checking out what will happen if an earthquake hits near a house….
Brina and Jake in the bubble ring
Now that’s a pretty shoe for you to wear! Brina loved it! Karlie said it didn’t look comfortable at all! It’s beautiful, but not sure I could stay upright in them.
Designer Paula Rasmus-Dede, Not Your Mama’s Mary Janes, 2003 (consists of glass beads, patent leather, and different colors of wire)
“I made this peice because I like Mary Janes. My grandmother made me wear orthopedic shoes when I was a child. I wasn’t allowed to wear black patent leather Mary Janes like all the popular schoolgirls. When I started making shoes I decided to make my own Mary Janes” – Paula Rasmus-Dede
I think Paula’s shoes may be a little bit fancier than just the average Mary Jane.
Brina and Karlie lifting Jake up. Testing the different types of pulleys
Karlie and Jake in a giant bubble!
There’s a bear behind you!
The “Travel and Vacation” series is an insight into our trips together as a family, ways we relax, and tips on how to make trips more enjoyable. Life is short and we were thrilled to have the opportunity to build memories with family and explore of of the most amazing places during our time away. Explore with a good attitude, look for fun, and it will be an awesome trip jammed packed with positive memories. It is refreshing having some time away from the regular routine. Make it a once in a lifetime opportunity to meet new people and learn. You just might see or try something new that takes your breath away!