Thursday, August 21, 2008


Outside gift shop in Skagway.

Heidi outside gift shop.

Wonderful setting for our special lunch.

Note the glass leaves among the flowers.

Blow, Donna. Blow!

Janet's paper-weight, getting the final spurt of white-hot glass for its base.

This entire port was fun - and beautiful - from beginning to end.

This was probably my most favorite excursion on this trip. Heidi has a friend named Heather who decided to take a summer job at the Jewel Gardens in Skagway, Alaska. When she learned we were coming to Alaska on a cruise and stopping in Skagway, Heather invited Heidi to bring two guests to have lunch in the tea room, tour the gardens, and partake in the glass-blowing. I have always wanted to watch a glass blower, but never dreamed I would get the chance to try it myself.

First we had lunch. It was incredible! Everything they serve was grown on the property. We had cream of cauliflower soup garnished with nasturtiums. Next we were served spinach pie and salad greens. For dessert we had delicious rhubarb cake with rhubarb sauce. It was all beautifully presented.

Next we went to the glassblowing where 9 other tourist joined us. I volunteered to go first. I decided to make a paper weight in cranberry glass. It was really fun. After all 12 had made their paper weight/ornament, the glass blower informed me mine had cracked. He noticed it as he was quickly placing it in the cooling chamber. So he asked me if I would like to make another. I jumped at the chance. While watching the others, I had changed my mind and thought I would rather have an ornament. I changed my colors to white and cranberry. With my experience from the first attempt, I knew to blow more air into my second globe.

The ornaments or paper weights were mailed to us. Mine was delivered this past Monday and it is beautiful.

Feeling elated from that experience, it was hard to imagine anything else could top this day, but then we walked through the gardens. I have included only a few of the photos I took. It was just so beautiful. I never expected to see flowers like this in Alaska.

If you ever go to Alaska, try to go to Skagway. And don't miss the Jewel Gardens.

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