Cruising Alaska: Ketchikan



We had two nice long days in Ketchikan on this trip. The first day it was pouring rain and the second was overcast but beautiful. I had fun both days because there was so much to see and do.

We spent a lot of time wandering the countless shops looking at all the tourist souvenirs, jewelry, and fun food like flavored popcorn. I also stopping to take pictures of the beautiful flowers and flowering bushes along the way. They seemed to be everywhere!

Creek Street


Wandering off the main strip of shops near the cruise ship docks, we found our way to the historic boardwalk called Creek Street. All the buildings in this area are built on pilings clinging to the hillside over the banks of Ketchikan Creek. This use to be a Red Light District, but now holds totem poles, shops, galleries, restaurants and Dolly's House museum. It's a great place to explore the art and culture for the area. More information and pictures can be found here:

Totem Bight State Park

We also took the local shuttle bus to Totem Bight Park to see their 15 totem poles and community house or clanhouse. Right when you get there, two totem poles greet you at the beginning of your tour. We wanted to keep things casual so we just picked up a self guided tour flyer and wandered the park trails. After a short walk through the tall cedar trees we came to the main area with lots of totem poles and the clanhouse. It was really neat to read about the meaning behind the symbolize on the totem poles. You can learn more about this fascinating place on their website at

Burger Queen


On both stops, we made a point to have lunch at The Burger Queen! A tiny little burger place that makes everything to order! The wait time on average was 45 minutes but it is so worth it. They also have mix and match milk shakes where you can pick your base ice cream (vanilla or chocolate) and then choose from over 40 flavors to add like Bacon, Kalhua, Irish Cream, Strawberries, Bananas, etc.

More Fun

And last, tucked away upstairs in the Salmon Landing Building is a quilt shop called The Silver Thimble that resides in two store spaces! I'll tell you all about it in my next update!

Next - The Silver Thimble...

Or jump ahead to the specific article you want to read in this eight part series!

Friday Photos - The Summer Colors are Coming

Summer Colors

I love this time of year! Here in Alaska we can't really start planting until after Memorial Day, but this year summer seems to be here early. So I've been visiting the local greenhouses, planning my yard, and just enjoying being out in the sun. After the long dark winter, the long sunny days just make me want to find any excuse to be outside. My camera becomes my constant companion and I store up all the beauty as inspiration for my art quilts. I thought I'd share some of my favorite shots from last year with you for this sunny Friday!

Photo Fun


The daisies are from a packet of wild flowers we sprinkled on one side of our yard. It's always fun to see what comes up and the number of flowers is amazing.


The Gazania was a new plant for me last year. It's an annual but it put on such a show. I got this beauty from our local Matsu Master Gardeners' Plant Sale. Love the annual Plant Sale. I always find great plants there.

orange lilies
orange lilies

My orange lilies come up every year and are always so bright and pretty. They don't have a strong smell but they make up for it in color.

purple pansy and alyssum
purple pansy and alyssum

My pansies are cross breeding and getting more intricate with each passing year. Can't wait to see what comes up this year. The small purple flowers are alyssum. Love how delicate these flowers are and great for keeping the bugs away.

black eyed susan
black eyed susan

My black eyed susans come up every year and get to about 4' tall! Love how the light hits the flowers in the early morning.

wesley in my begonia
wesley in my begonia

And last, never forget to care for your potted cats! Wesley loves to sleep in my angel wing begonia in the studio. I figure at least he's sitting still and the plant doesn't seem to mind.

What's the summer colors like in your area? I can't wait to see what comes up in my garden this year!