Day Trip to Palmer and Anchorage…

Friday was another great day, as we spent it with Tracy & Lee! We were up and out and on our way toward Anchorage early – by our usual schedule anyways – 8am. 

gorgeous views on the way to Anc – a lot less snow than when we first traveled this road – about 6 weeks ago!


 We were meeting them at the Reindeer Farm in Palmer. We enjoyed our picnic lunch on tables right there at the farm. We took the official tour, which was $9 each, but since we used our TourSaver app, we got BOGO! Our tour guide, Jacob, told us all about reindeer, aka caribou. They also have a bison, named Dolly, and elk on the farm. I can’t speak for anyone else, but I sure enjoyed seeing the animals.  We actually learned a few things.  Reindeer are the same as caribou, except domesticated for farming.  This is mostly for tourism, but does sell some of the bulls when they cause issues within the herd.  Both male and female reindeer/caribou get antlers, they lose them each year, males in the fall and females in the spring after they’ve given birth, so that means all Santas reindeers, including Rudolf, was a girl!  Elk males are the only ones to get antlers, in fact you can tell how old a male elk is by how many points their antlers have (only count one side).  Antlers are different from horns, animals, like bison, have horns and they do not lose them at all, the only way to get horns is to kill the animal.  

how cool is this chair?
Jacob, our tour guide, knew all about the animals
this guy was happy to pose
Lee feeding one
they were all hungry for a snack
Tracy was very popular
this is an elk – only males get antlers and this guy had the biggest rack!
elk like to eat fresh cut grass – so nearby neighbors bring the farm their grass clippings
Bill holding caribou/reindeer antlers, which fall off every year and they grow new ones
Dolly was a bit shy

Tracy had heard about the Palmer Farmers Market and wanted to go to it. I am really loving these small town things. They had a bunch of local produce and hand-made items for sale.  

live entertainment!
these are hand made
so are all of these

Next on the to-do list was a stop at Sam’s Club. Tracy & Lee have a Costco membership, so they entered with us. We joked about swapping spouses, ha ha! We filled our carts and loaded the trucks.  
While doing our shopping, Tracy and I talked about we each needing haircuts – so that was the next thing to check off the list. Believe it or not, I actually went to the nearby Great Clips – not like me at all. Tracy and I discussed the difference between our lives “then” (before full-timing) and now and how priorities have changed. We each used to have our standing 2 week nail appts, getting our acrylic nails filled, our 5 to 6 week hair cut and color appts. In the interest of being totally honest here, that is one thing I do miss. Bill says its me being vain and maybe it is, but I don’t care. I enjoyed that “me” time, getting my pampering. I enjoyed having my hair and nails looking good – even Tracy said she remembers smiling to herself when she looked down at her manicured nails, a feeling I can totally relate to. I posted a memory pic on FB a  week or so ago from a few years back; it was of a baby praying mantis – with my thumb in it for scale. My perfectly manicured French nail polished thumb nail! Some people (my loving siblings mostly – ha!) poked fun at me for saying that thumb nail was the first thing I now noticed in that pic! But all of life is about compromises, and giving up my fancy haircuts and nails is one I was willing to make. Truth is I’d rather spend that money somewhere else now. If I end up deciding I don’t like the gray – I will start to visit Sally’s Beauty Supply and get some hair dye. No big deal.  

Wasn’t planning that lengthy a tangen about hair and nails – I never know where these posts will lead me!

While Tracy and I got our hair cut, Bill and Lee went over to our chosen spot for an early dinner – Moose’s Tooth Pub and Pizzeria, which is #1 on TripAdvisor and was also recommended by Gary. The timing was perfect, as they had been sat at a table only 5 minutes before we arrived. We ordered our drinks, salads and pizza. The whole meal was delicious and we actually ordered dessert!  



As if that weren’t a long enough and full day – we had one more stop – Costco! We each got another cart full and, again, loaded up our trucks. After plenty of hugs – we each headed to our respective homes, sadly in opposite directions. No reason to be too sad though as they will be coming to Seward in a few weeks!