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Friday, September 27, 2019

Knotwork Frame and Hear Coloring Page

Knotwork heart and frame- blank version available to color

Hi! This whole week/month/summer has been super busy and I still need to finish writing about Culture Camp, but took a short break to draw. I hope you enjoy this knotwork frame and heart coloring page.

The frame opening is 7x5 inches, so you can put your favorite photo in there too if you'd like.

Click the images below for larger versions of this free printable coloring page.

Printable knotwork frame and heart coloring page small jpg format:

Free knotwork frame and heart coloring page available in jpg and transparent png format.

Printable knotwork frame and heart coloring page large transparent png format:

Free knotwork frame and heart coloring page available in jpg and transparent png format.

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Culture Camp- Part 1

TG and William at the Raven statue at the Alaska Native Heritage Center
William and TG at the Alaska Native Heritage Center
This is going to be a few posts because I took a LOT of photos.

Last month, my children and I had a chance to go to a culture camp. If you're not indigenous, culture camps are a way to learn about our heritage from Elders and people who live a traditional life. This one was a mixed culture camp, centering on Traditional Foods for the various indigenous people from Alaska. We were really excited about it.

It took place at the Alaska Native Heritage Center. This is definitely a place you should visit if you're ever in Anchorage. They have a village area set up in the back of the museum with the various building structures used by the tribes up here. The grounds grow a lot of plants that are used traditionally for food and medicines. It's educational and interesting and they focus on creating opportunities for Native peoples. There are young interns who do presentations, and there is dancing and indigenous artists selling beautiful things.

My family is Tanana Athabaskan. We come from the interior, even though my children and I have lived in Anchorage our whole lives. If you have younger children, you may be watching Molly of Denali with them. Molly is Athabaskan too.

The first day of camp, a whole bunch of us were processing salmon for canning. So we went straight to work. TG, William and I were in the classroom a little early, so we helped the teacher set up.

Salmon is preserved in a lot of ways, and canning is a modern one and important. We learned how to pack salmon into jars, why our teacher preferred jars to cans and we cut and packed up a lot of salmon.

TG processing salmon

At the end of the day, I asked TG and William if they had fun. They had worked, listened to a presentation on safe canning methods, and we walked around the museum some. I also got myself a pair of baleen hair sticks from one of the artists on side.

They both agreed it was a whole lot of fun. 

The qaspeq that TG is wearing is one that belonged to her grandmother. It's about 50 years old. You can get my free qaspeq coloing page here-Qaspeq/Kuspuk Coloring Page

A couple days later, we got to work on canning the fish. 

salmon before and after canning

The salmon was packed into the jars raw. You can see what it looks like before and after canning in this photo. Canning it cooks it, and the bones soften so much that they can be eaten. A good source calcium!!  Canning can also be used to preserve other meats using a pressure canner. Our local extension service has instructions for canning walrus!! Becky told us how she made her canned moose stew. 

We also had a class on safety procedures. That was good. TG won a water bottle in that class and she was really happy. 

I missed a class on plants because I had an appointment. TG and William took extensive notes and enjoyed the class a lot. They both came home with jars of yarrow salve from that class. 

The plant class I did take, taught by Meda DeWitt was about nettles. We went out and picked some nettles, and stripped them. We learned about how to use the seeds to make a tincture, how to use the leaves for tea and food, and then made a simple hand-spun twine using the fiber. 

Then we got a presentation from Chef Sean Sherman. That was fantastic. If you don't know who Chef Sherman is- he is a James W. Beard award winning chef with a passion and vision for indigenous foods. He is also known as the Sioux Chef. 

I went totally fangirl when I found out he was going to be here! A couple friends of mine from Minnesota who had been to some of his presentations told me how much I was going to enjoy it. 

An Elder gifted him with some muktuk (whale fat and skin) that he shared. It was the first time that my children had tried muktuk. It was not the last time that week they had muktuk. They both loved it. Chef Sherman said it tasted like the sea. 

Chef Sean Sherman sharing muktuk. 
His vision is wonderful. It's about creating new recipes and learning the old recipes. Finding how which foods have been traditionally harvested in various regions, wild foods, foraged foods. He wants to empower indigenous people to set up businesses both for supply and finished products such as restaurants. It is an exciting vision and you can find out more at The Sioux Chef and NATIFS.

If you're interested in Chef Sean Sherman's book, you can buy it using the link below. Amazon affiliate links won't affect your price, and the small commission they pay helps fund this page.