Isn’t it summer yet?

Dear warm reader,

When the clouds lifted off the mountains this morning, this is what we saw out our window —

Yes, that’s fresh snow. And not far from our house. Often during the summer it will snow on the very tops of the mountains. In autumn, we call it “termination dust” because it is the sign of the end. But in June? And this close? Luckily, our vegetable garden and summer blooms weren’t damaged by frost.

On another note, I want to give a quick thanks to my readers. I have friends from here in Alaska, including Sue and the Baers, who have kept me inspired with their comments on my blog from the beginning. But I also have more far-flung readers — my grandparents in New York, my grandmother’s dear friend Alma in Florida, even readers in Norway, Italy, the Netherlands, the UK, and France. That’s what keeps me writing — knowing my “letters from Alaska” are connecting me with loved ones and new friends around the world.

May your mornings be free of snow and your flowers forever blooming,



  • Sue Mathis says:

    We were coming home from the movies the other night and the mountain tops near our house looked very much like the ones by your house. There was even some snow on Lazy Mountain! Not even summer solstice yet, and there’s snow up there. I remember a year when there was new snow on the mountains on June 21st, but this is a little ridiculous!!!!

  • Yaya says:

    Those flowers look good. Now if you could guarantee that we would see that in May, we might consider a move to alaska.

  • Lidwien Biekmann says:

    I’m one of those Dutch readers, and I’m translating Child of Snow into Dutch at the moment!

  • Eowyn Ivey says:

    How wonderful to hear from some of the very readers I had in mind — my good friend and neighbor Sue, my grandmother in New York (who isn’t quite ready to move to Alaska yet), and my novel’s Dutch translator! Lidwien — thank you so much for visiting my blog, and for your hard work. It’s exciting to know you’re translating it right now!

  • Lidwien Biekmann says:

    Hi there, well, it’s a pleasure, Eowyn! I never visited Alaska, but I would really love to go there some day. I went to Banff two years ago, for the Banff International Literature Translating Conference, well, that’s not quite the same of course, but it’s more like Alaska than Holland. It’s funny that I read your salmon-story on the day that I was translating the part when Jack and Garrett are working on the moose…

  • Mr. Baer says:

    Thank you for the wonderful complement Eowyn. Alaska is truly a magical place. Just back from our annual fishing excursion to the Kasilof gill net fishery, where we spent four days setting nets on the evening high tides, sitting atop a bluff overlooking Cook Inlet, the snow covered Aelutian Range across the sea, eagles and gulls flying below and above us (watch out for the bomber squadron, you don’t want to get hit by an eagle or gull for that matter, but it happens), seals checking out our nets for easy picking salmon, large buffet meals around the campfire, pulling the nets in, everyone from 6 to 60 (it’s a group effort) picking the sockeye salmon with an occasional king salmon from the nets, children laughing each wanting to toss the flounders back in the sea, then the work begins for three hours of filleting (beware the main fillet diva for when the number of fish goes past 60 don’t get near the man with the knife), vacuum sealing the fillets, hauling the packages to the freezer, someone having the job of tossing the heads, tails and guts over the bluff for the gulls and eagles to feast upon, then sitting by the fire, with a tired but satisfied feeling knowing you have fish for the winter, watching the sun set over Redoubt Volcano at 11:30PM. As our good friend Dave says, “You can’t beat it!”

  • Eowyn Ivey says:

    Lidwien — I hope you do come to Alaska someday. Alberta Canada definitely has some similarities, but Alaska is unique. By the way, I can’t wait to see my Dutch cover. I got my first glimpse at the Spanish edition today, and it’s lovely. I’ll post it on here later in the week.

    Mr. Baer — Glad you made it back safe and sound and flush with fish. It’s a beautiful spot you all have there. “You can’t beat it!” Here, here.

    • Lidwien says:

      I’ve no idea what the Dutch cover will be like, but I do hope it will be the same as the American, with the girl and the fox and the trees, it’s so beautiful!