Friday, March 29, 2013

A few pictures of Tuk

Its Easter weekend, which means a four day weekend!  Not gonna lie - pretty excited to just chill for a bit.  Its been a hectic past few weeks, I've been up late a lot planning and working on my AQ course as well.

Last night walking home from a friend's place we saw the most amazing display of the northern lights.  It looked as though a humongous glowing green slug was eating the night sky, it stretched from one edge of the horizon, directly over top of us to the other side.

Tonight I went out around 9:30 to let my roommates dogs out and couldn't ignore the beautiful sunset over the Artic Ocean.  I thought I'd take this opportunity to take and post a few pictures. 

 What I wish my kids would do...

What my kids actually do. (jk)

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

North - again

Hey "all,"

I sometimes wonder if anyone out there actually reads this stuff?  Perhaps I'm just talking to myself.

I've moved... again... why I keep doing this, I actually wonder about sometimes.  In three years I've lived in three remote, fly in communities, teaching not-so-calm kids. Actually, perhaps I can answer that...  The north is like a part of me now - I crave the isolation, the pace of life here.  I love the barren landscapes and the QUIET - the absolute stillness.  When all you can hear is the sound of snow beneath your feet.  When you don't have to worry about what you're going to do on a Friday or Saturday night... it's okay to just stay in and curl up with a good guy and a fire because there is nothing else to do (and what better is there to do that than, anyhow?)  Although, I do miss coffee shops and grabbing pints whenever I please.  Anyway, here I am again - and this time I don't know if I could go much further north if I tried.

Last Tuesday (one week ago!) I drove on the Arctic Ocean (I even passed a sign! It said "Arctic Ocean"... craazy).  I flew from Toronto on Monday, stayed overnight in Edmonton, and then jumping from Yellowknife, to Norman Wells (where I'd get off if I wanted to head to Fort Good Hope) then further north to Inuvik. A pretty uneventful sequence of flights, which I believe is always the best sort of flights.  From there I got a ride on the very wide and beautiful ice road to Tuktoyaktuk, where I am now.

It happened all so quickly.  I applied on a Tuesday, had an interview Wednesday, and on Friday I accepted the position.  A week before I left I had no idea I would be so far away.  Talk about a fast life change.

I'm teaching a grade 2 class with four months left on the school calendar.  The previous teacher had to leave because his wife became ill.  Scott is finishing teacher's college and will soon (as time flies) be joining me here - its hard to wait.  I had to leave Gus behind with my parents who graciously offered to dog-sit.  I had planned to take him a long, but a day before leaving I still couldn't find a house up here that would allow pets indoors (most people chain their dogs up outside).  I miss my boys immensely.  I'm currently staying with a very nice kindergarten teacher and looking for other accommodations come May when Scott is here.

Its been odd jumping into a class with just a quarter of the school year to complete.  The kids have thus far responded very positively to the changes I've made,  adding a lot of structure and routine to their day.  Its a class of mostly boys, so I've had to change some of my teaching strategies.... we do a lot more moving around!  But they are still in grade 2 and they like to sing and dance, they are really good kids.

I've been keeping myself busy with school work and planning, but have also been out a bit.  A teacher I know from my previous job in Kash works here as well, and we've been hanging out which has been great.  Its good to have a friend here.  I;m also going to "fitness" classes 3 times a week, which is some circuit training set up in the gym.  Other then that, I've been working on my additional qualification course, Reading Part II.  I'm hoping to get my Reading Specialist eventually - perhaps it will make me a more desired commodity in the south someday.

That's all for now, Ill post some pictures soon.  To my family and friends, I miss you and love you all.  My phone number remains the same as it was in Peterborough, don't be afraid to call.

Mrs. Genive
Northern Teacher Extraordinaire

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Mini Series begins

A rooster.
Oil on canvas, 4" by 4".
A tree frog.
Oil on canvas, 4" by 4".

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Learning How to Paint with Oil

I've taked up art again, and am attending a few oil painting classes each week.  Here is one of my first projects.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Skiing Program, Winter Carnival and the Winter Road

I haven't forgotten about this bolg, but it seems that we've settled into our weekly routine and not much that is noteworthy has occurred since coming back to Fort Good Hope after the new year.  These past few weeks have held some excitment, however.

Scott and I completed a community coaching course, we are now certified to coach beginning cross country skiiers.  Through a grant for a large sum of money I recieved earlier in the school year, I was able to purchase 14 pairs of skis, boots and poles for the elementary students at Chief T'Selehye.  Scott, myself and a community volunteer have been going out with the kids every Monday and Wednesday this month, and its been a big hit.  We run out of skis each time.  I stay with the little ones (I'm afraid the grade 7s will find out how slow I really am!) but we've been having a good time showing them the basics that Scott and I have just mastered ourselves.  This afternoon we taught them how to climb small slopes, which the kids found challenging, but forgot all about it as they travelled down the downhill... and turned back around for a second go.  Its been pretty rewarding, not only for Scott and I, but for a few of my students in particular.  The weather has been absolutely fantastic, too.  The sun has been shining, no breeze what so ever, each time we've gone out.  Its been pretty fun.  Aparently the best time to ski here is in April - the days are longer and the temperature hovers just below 0.  Look'n forward to it.  Scott and I still go out on our own each weekend, we're discovering new trails all the time.  I actually had an interview with CBC radio based out of Yellowknife about the program, I talked a mile a minute out of nervousness, but its neat that our little project is getting some attention.  Hope it does some kids some good.

"Dead bugs" - learning how to get up!

Scott demonstrates.

This past Friday was also our school's winter carnival that I got up and running, I hope it can become an annual event.  Kids traveled around through different activities all afternoon, including outdoor parachute games, relays and a tug of war, snow related activities in the gym, hot chocolate and a craft.

We also got a great chance to visit Matt and Marie, our friends from university who introduced us to the north, in Coleville Lake.  The small town is about a 3 hours drive (highly dependant on weather and road conditions) north from Fort Good Hope on the winter road.  This was our first trek on the road - its a beautiful stretch!  Some parts are much more travel friendly than others, it made for a bumpy ride at parts, but as we travelled north we passed lakes, mountains, trees...

Its late here, Ill write more about our trip and visit later this week :)
love and miss you all.

Saturday, December 3, 2011


Yes Laura, I know its been a while since I've blogged last... so, with you in mind...

Only 10 teaching days until I (fingers crossed!) fly home for Christmas. I'm excited for the next few weeks in school - there's going to be a lot to keep me busy with my kids, including rehersing for their Christmas concert debut, helping cook many feasts, going skating, making and painting murals... and then the long flight home, first to Ottawa to visit with the Robertsons, and then to London to see the my fam for several days. One of my best friends is getting married on New Year's Eve, so there is much to be looking forward to this month!

An October update with a few pictures.  My kids looked super cute in their costumes, and we won a pizza party for best door decoration!

No, this isn't a costume (well, some of it used to be....)  This is Scott in all his house husband glory, chopping wood to keep me warm.

This is one of my kids in my quickly made costume (the painting "The Scream").  Most people thought I was a postage stamp.  Oh well, the kids had fun with it.

November was a good month as well.  Our friends from Coleville Lake (a community north of here) braved the trails and freezing temperatures and skidooed to see us over the Remembrance Day long weekend.  The winter road was not completed at the time, so the trail was rough and it took them nearly 6 hours to get here.  They brought along several huge frozen white fish, ground caribou meat, caribou steaks and caribou ribs.  I’d never eaten caribou, and the ribs were so long and huge they barely fit in the oven.  They were amazing.  So are my friends... such a great visit, we are looking forward to hopefully getting up to Coleville sometime in the new year to visit them.

 Matt showed us how to gut-and-cut and fillet a fish. Tonight I successfully filleted one of the huge suckers for a dinner of fish and chips. I’m still getting used to the slimy things, and the smell is terrible – but it is getting easier to cook raw meat the more I practice.

I also celebrated my birthday this month. Scott surprized me with cake, nachos (my favorite!) and the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo trilogy DVDs (because I burned through those books quickly). Our good friend Dave came over to help us celebrate. Turning 27 is a tough one to swallow, but I’m in a good place with a great guy and a job I’m grateful for.

Scott's typical hang out.