Sunday, August 3, 2008

Blueberries, Blueberries Everywhere and Every One to EAT!

That's right the rains finally stopped, after the Tanana, Salcha, and Chena Rivers flooded. Leaving many people stranded and unable to get in or out of their homes for a few days, but I was glad to see the waters finally recede and the sun come out to dry things up. Luckily we didn't have any problems due to the flood waters. Of course after two weeks of kids running around the house, playing board games and watching videos we were all VERY happy to get outside. David and I had a feeling that there might just be some blueberries ready for picking up at Murphy Dome, so into the truck we packed our rain gear, extra fleece(it's been a pretty cold summer, even by Alaskan standards), snacks, water, and of course berry buckets, AKA: yogurt or ice cream containers.....there was one thing we forgot...the camera...oops. We headed to SUBWAY where we picked up a few foot-long sandwiches and headed for the hills.A short drive later and we were walking out of the squishy tundra, smelling Labrador tea that conjured up memories of days spent on the Seward Peninsula where we first fell in love with blueberry picking. That is right just like in this book,

Check out Ann Dixon's book
we are a family who LOVES to pick blueberries! I can't actually remember a summer or fall when we didn't go out to "roam mossy hummocks" in search of these tiny blue treasures. This year we were all able to walk in our own two rubber boots, no one needed to be amaaqtuq or carried and there was no fussing, whining or crying about eating Mom and Dad's berries. Everyone was able to pick their own!!! While we were picking we sang song like The Supreme's Stop in the Name of Love, changing the words just a bit to meet our needs and it went something like this, "Stop in the name of blueberries, before you squish it's juice....walk on oooveeerrr, walk aroooouuunndd.
Many scat discoveries were made. We found moose, bear and what we were pretty sure was dog poop. Colorful tundra flowers bloomed everywhere and of course there were blackberries and cranberries, but they didn't seem to attract our attention as much as the other berries. We even found a couple of aqpiks better known as salmon berries. Of course there were "old blueberry stories" told by Jake about him picking blueberries from Rich's bucket, having picnics on the tundra, and picking WAY past bedtime, 'cause who can resist those LONG Alaskan days.
Ben was labeled the Blueberry Buzzard because he would circle and circle until you stopped to pick and then rush in to eat your bounty, but no one really minded, they would just move on to another patch. We were all "counting our blueberries before they were picked" and dreaming about all of the things we would make with our booty, blueberry pancakes, muffins, waffles, blueberry sausage casserole, blueberry ice cream, blueberry crisp, blueberry pie, blueberries in our yogurt, cereal....OK OK you get the idea. All in all it was a wonderful family outing, one of those "best days" that you remember for years to come and tell stories about during next years blueberry picking outing!

1 comment:

Eluciq said...

yum...yum...yummers!

gotta love alaskan blueberries...but not so much that rain.

miss ya!