September 9, 2012

It's officially Fall in Alaska!  The cars parked outside this morning had frost on them and the leaves are changing colors and falling off the trees very quickly.  We're loving it, but it's too bad that it doesn't look like it's going to last long.  We'll enjoy it while it lasts I guess.  Even when winter does start, the first part of it is never too bad.  You start it off with the Fall colors, crisp outside air, college football is starting up (if that wasn't a give away as to who is writing this post, you don't know Holly very well!), Halloween is around the corner (and even though I don't particularly love Halloween, I still like that everyone is celebrating something), the first snow is kind of exciting and new (especially if you have a season pass to any ski resort...not happening this year), hot chocolate, you've got Thanksgiving and Christmas on the way, you can start playing Dave Barnes Holiday radio station again on Pandora (I start right after Halloween, but I know some people have rules about playing Christmas music before Thanksgiving - to each his own), and then you've got New Years.  It's January through whenever-it-finally-warms-up-again that is the tough part.

Baby Update: Aubree is growing like crazy.  She giggles every now and again, which is fun.  She loves attention and if we let her be for a few minutes she does this fake coughing-like cry to get someone's attention :)  It's cute.  One of my favorite parts to the day is coming home, baby talking to her a bit, and seeing her big, ear-to-ear, eye-squinting grin.  Holly's grandpa talked about how little girls just have their dad's wrapped around their finger. I admit it, it's true.

Look, she doesn't even have to do anything and she's still  cute!
Holly is doing great.  She is kind to let me sleep through the night when Aubree needs to get up. She's been looking into some nursing jobs that would let her get some experience under a belt and use her degree.  They would be part-time, weekend-type positions. There is one we're excited about, but we'll see!

And now it's time for a quick episode of Eric's auditing adventures.  You might think putting the word auditing with any word, no matter how action-packed it may still going to be anticlimactic.  Prepare to be impressed!  These are just a few pictures and videos of some audits I've got to travel to in the last month or so.  I am enjoying my job.  It is challenging, but I am learning so much, and I get to see and do cool things like the stuff here.

Ever wonder what it's like to ride shotgun (we're talking right next to the pilot) in an amphibious plane dubbed the "the goose" (for it's ability to land or take off on either water or an airport runway) at low altitude over the Aleutian Islands?  Wonder no more...(you've got to watch the last three mins of the video, that's the landing in the water).

The video hardly does it justice.  My thoughts during this flight were "Wow, how lucky am I? How many people actually get to do or see this?"  I was wishing that Holly could have been there with me and then the song "I can show you the world" from Aladin immediately started playing in my head, but I fought it out.

Later that week we actually ended up having to catch a 4.5 hour ride in the galley of a fishing boat at 3:00AM to get off the island in time to catch our flight from Dutch Harbor back to Anchorage.

The next week I was in a small native village called Manokotak.  We flew on Alaska Airlines to Dillingham and then got to fly on a charter plane from Dillingham to Manokotak.  Don't get me wrong , the pilot is a great guy and a good pilot at that, but I had to think to myself, "Man, this guy drives a plane like most people drive cars...just get in and go."  Then I corrected myself..."No, this guy drives a plane like it's a four wheeler!"  Great, experienced pilot, and I am sure we were safe every minute of the flight, but it was definitely a trip!

Manokotak, AK

My view on the flight.

Can you see the runway?  I promise it's there.
 One of the nights we spent at a hotel in Dillingham, AK.  It wasn't too shabby of a place, but I had to laugh when I walked into the room... Once again, I was wishing Holly could have been there to see it.

The large picture right above my bed :)  Sweet dreams.
"Aaaaoooooh"...this was the wallpaper around the room.  Reminds me of a movie we saw with the McDaniels once ;)
You might have to click on the picture to actually read the paper, but I thought it was a good                                                     gesture - gave me some peace of mind anyway.
 And finally, these last two pictures are not from an audit trip, but I just wanted to share.  I've finally bagged some Alaskan game - Ptarmigan.  Thanks Court and Glenn for letting me tag along!