After the Summer Solstice

This poor blog has been at the bottom of my list of priorities lately. We haven’t traveled much in the last couple of months, and recipe development has been on the back burner. I’ve been relying on sandwiches, seasonal berries, crock pot meals, and greek yogurt to sustain my family — and on particularly busy days I feel like I’m throwing crumbs to the birds, shouting ‘fend for yourselves!’ as I head out the door for Book Club or an evening photo session.

Summer is winding down, I can tell because the further we stray from the Summer Solstice, the less daylight we have each day.

Crystle Maternity - 24 Weeks

Sally the BeagleEven with the long daylight hours, summer in Fairbanks has been very wet this year. Although I have no previous experience in Alaska to compare it to, I can say that it’s similar to springtime in Washington. We’ve had a handful of warm sunny days, usually when it counts, like during the Summer Solstice festival.

Fairbanks, AKFairbanks, AKBut overall, it’s been a very wet summer. The wettest in 100 years, I’m told. And overcast. Today we’re under cloud cover once again. The temps linger in the sixties and low seventies, exactly where they need to be for a comfortable summer in maternity clothes. I can’t imagine wearing full panel skirts and shorts when temps top 100, or attempting to buy a swimsuit while 7 months pregnant. I’m definitely thankful for the cool, brisk summer we’ve had so far.

Rainy day play dates and gatherings at the local community centers have been the norm.

Gatherings, Fort Wainwright, AKRainy Day Play Dates - Fort Wainwright, AK  Office Assistant Work has been steady over at Yea Yea Photography. But Margot, my assistant, only likes to help when I’m working with packaging materials, or editing photos of babies. More often than not, she insists on sitting on my lap and yelling ‘ga!‘ at the computer monitor when I cull images. Her clumsy little fingers smack against the keyboard in an attempt to help me type; it’s a much less endearing effort when she accidentally closes a window, or somehow hits ‘undo’ on my work.

Juggling childcare, work and service is a challenge. This year I’ve taken on a board position at the Protestant Women of the Chapel (PWOC), a military spouse ministry I’ve been involved in since moving here to Fairbanks. I’m the Historian this year, meaning I walk around our events with my camera around my neck (as usual), taking photos of everyone having a good time. It’s a great way to serve in accordance to my skill set. You can see my photos on their Facebook page.

Messy Hair MargotI’ve also been meeting up with other photographers in town. I’m proud to have the talented Sarah Lewis in my collection of friends up here, and excited that she’ll be doing our Fresh-48 photo session when Woody arrives. She recently gifted me a jar of SCOBYs, and a vintage yogurt maker, both of which will get plenty of use.

It’s nice to talk shop with Sarah, and a few of the other photographers in town, whose experience and knowledge far outrank mine.

Crystle Maternity - 29 WeeksThis weekend should be the busiest in awhile. My friends are throwing me a baby shower Saturday morning, then I’m shooting a wedding (my first!) that same evening. After a busy period of culling and editing in the days following, I’ll be wrapping up some orders, then taking it easy on a brief Maternity leave.

Woody will be here in about six weeks. As his due date draws nearer, my confidence wavers. I’m terribly nervous about multiplying my parenting responsibilities and meeting everyone’s needs. The lack of sleep is also a daunting prospect. I expect difficulties in keeping up with Margot who is more and more active, yet needy, all the time. Right now she’s in the throes of a ‘don’t-put-me-down’ phase, it’s kills my back when I carry her without with the ERGObaby Original Baby Carrier, which has proven itself essential more times than I can count.

Regardless of the workload, or the changes in responsibility, we’ve got a good thing going. Our family dynamic changes a little bit, everyday here in Alaska — a lot like the waning midnight Sun.


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