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The Latest News

Well, as I sit and write this, it is 10:30 AM and  42 degrees below zero outside. Brian is still sleeping, I've only been up an hour, and Thumper is trying to chew her way out of her wire cage.

We had a "warm spell" this month. One day it even got up to 40 degrees (that's above zero). It was amazing and quite warm. But now winter has returned -- hopefully not for too long -- deciding to give Brian and I one last horrifying taste before we move on to the Lower 48. This is a stay-inside and don't-venture-out- unless-you-absolutely-have-to kind of weekend.

Our time here is coming to a quick close, and so I thought I better update everyone on what is happening. We have had a number of changes in the last few months, though that shouldn't be surprising, as it seems all of my letters begin that way. 

Fall began as usual, but then in early November my grandma passed away -- on my dad's side. I had traveled back east with my dad to see her while she was ill, and she died while we were in town. And so we stayed a little longer than we had planned. My dad even did her memorial service. Josh came into town too. We are, of course, still mourning her passing; it has certainly cast a shadow on the excitement of the other changes in our lives. I miss her very much.

About a week later, Thanksgiving arrived, as did my dad and Nancy for a short stay. Christmas came about two and a half weeks later with our departure to Brian's parents' new house in Sacramento, California. We had a great vacation there; everybody came, including our cute little nephew, Nicky. About two weeks after our return to Alaska, my dad and Nancy returned to get married up here in the cold north. J. and Josh came too, and we had a full house for about a week.

And so now we settle in for the next two months. The saga of the federal job applications continues. Brian has applied to a number of agencies and has reached the interview stage for just about everything he has applied for. But only one of these interviews has been scheduled so far. I think that due to September 11th the processing of these applications has slowed way down. But we have absolutely no way of knowing when he will have a job with one of these agencies and begin training. We just have a feeling that it will be a while.

So, in April our plan is to temporarily move back to Portland and to at least stay with my mom for a little while. We plan to both find jobs (as well as a place to live eventually), and to simply wait out the process. Eventually, if Brian gets a federal job, he will have about four months of training to complete elsewhere in the country. And then after that, we will move again.

Thumper is busy packing her bunny-knapsack for the big trip.

That's all the news for now (as if that wasn't enough). Please keep in touch, and keep us in your prayers through these changes!

-- Rachel and Brian

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Last Revised: 03/10/02