Thursday, June 9, 2016

Please help Steampunk Addie's family!

Meeting Steampunk Addie

In summer 2012, I had the great pleasure of meeting a new friend whom I had previously only known online- Steampunk Addie! Addie and I are great friends and we spent an afternoon talking and having fun. Sadly, a few days ago, Steampunk Addie's home fell victim to a massive fire. The home is a total loss. Thankfully Steampunk Addie and her dear friend Clementine are safe, as are her family. Two of the family's cats passed away in the fire, though two dogs and two cats survived.

The family did not have homeowner's insurance, so it is up to our family of friends to care for an amazing member of our community. Please, find it in your hearts to help Steampunk Addie and Clementine's family!


I know our community can rally around Steampunk Addie and Clementine and make sure they are safe and sheltered!

With love,

Inky

Friday, June 3, 2016

First Beach Day this Summer!

Jacob Riis Park, May 2016

Hello my friends! Last weekend was amazing because it was finally warm enough for the first beach day of the season! I think I've mentioned before that my family loves to go to the beach at sunset because it is much less crowded. I had a fantastic time, even though the water was too cold to swim.

Jacob Riis Park, May 2016

I love going to the beach at sunset! The light is so golden.  Plus? My moms gave me a new swimsuit! Isn't it cool? I love playing in the sand.

Jacob Riis Park, May 2016

Before I got to work playing, I did some exploring. That sounds a little silly, because I go to the same beach many times every summer- but really, it's different every time because the ocean and sand are always changing.   There were a few other families there, but mostly, my family had the beach to ourselves.

Jacob Riis Park, May 2016

I like this photo of me because my bangs are blowing in the wind and there is a seagull right behind me! The seagulls can be very aggressive if they spy your food! Luckily I didn't have any snacks on me so the seagull left me alone. Phew!

Jacob Riis Park, May 2016

Sandcastles are an important part of a trip to the beach! I recommend getting as close to the water as you can without getting hit by a wave- the sand there has just the right amount of water in it.  Dry sand doesn't stick together; you need the sand to be a little wet for it to work as building material!

Jacob Riis Park, May 2016

After I finished building a sandcastle, I went looking for beautiful shells.  Can you see all the shells on the ground behind me? The waves wash them onto the shore.  Jacob Riis Park Beach is part of the Gateway National Recreation Area. That means it's a national park! So! That means you cannot take the shells home.  One of the main rules of national parks is "Take only photos, leave only footprints."

Jacob Riis Park, May 2016

After I finished finding beautiful shells, I decided to play with my sand molds.  Of course, my moms gave me a tube of sunblock and made me put more and more on! It's very, very important to have protection from the sun so you don't burn.  Even though it was sunset, the sun was still pretty powerful.

Jacob Riis Park, May 2016

Check out my sand molds! I have a seahorse and a sea turtle. They are so cute! I love both types of animals. I've only seen sea horses at the aquarium, but I got to see sea turtles in the wild when I was in Costa Rica a year and a half ago.  Sea horses are awesome too, though I prefer leafy sea dragons. They're so cool!

Jacob Riis Park, May 2016

Too soon, it was time to go home.  I stood in the sun one last time before we got in our car and drove home.  I love going to the beach!

Jacob Riis Park, May 2016

As we got in our car, the sun looked gorgeous behind the bridge. Doesn't it look awesome? You can really see how the sun is a star!

Have you ever been to the beach? What was your favorite thing to do there?

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Blogging for LGBTQ Families Day

Happy Pride 2015!

Happy 11th Annual Blogging for LGBT Families Day!! I'm very lucky to be part of a family with two moms, my Mama and Mom.  They are lucky to have me too!

One thing that makes our family special is that we homeschool and travel a lot! I am ten years old and so far, I have been to several countries and many states.  My family loves National Park Service sites like parks and historic sites.  At NPS sites, I love to do the Junior Ranger program to earn badges and help me prepare for my dream career- park ranger! My parents made the decision to homeschool me so that we could keep on traveling all year long. I love it!

Another thing that makes our family special is that we all have different ethnicities.  I was born in Russia and I am from a small ethnic group there- the Nanai.  Mama is American Indian, from New Mexico. Mom is from the East Coast and her family is European American.   We also try to spend time in Ukraine whenever we can, because it is very special to our whole family.

My family is special because we are an LGBT family, but we are also just like many families. We are the same and different all at once!

What makes your family special?


Thursday, May 26, 2016

White Sands National Monument

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My biggest NPS adventure on my New Mexico trip was a day at White Sands National Monument! White Sands is a beautiful place, a desert made of white gypsum sand  near Alamogordo, New Mexico.  My family had a great time staying at Inn of the Mountain Gods the night before, so we were well-rested before we set out into the desert.

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The sand is pure white and so soft! I live near the Atlantic Ocean and our sand is much grittier. At White Sands, you can climb and play as long as you don't disturb the plants and animals.  The sky was bright blue with a few clouds.  My family packed lots of water because it can get very hot at White Sands.

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One fun thing you can do at White Sands is sled down the dunes! At the gift shop, you can purchase a sled, but I decided to do what my mama did as a kid- slide on a big piece of cardboard. It was so fun! I wanted to roll down, but my parents said "NO WAY!" and told me I'd end up looking like a sand dune myself!

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I love this photo because you can see the ripples the wind made in the dunes.  Isn't it a beautiful sight? I'm so lucky that I got to visit! You can see mountains behind me.  The sand is in the Tularosa basin which is surrounded by the San Andres and Sacramento Mountains.  The mountains are partially made of gypsum, so when wind and water brought the gypsum down into the basin, it formed the beautiful white gypsum dunes over time.  In fact, the whole area used to be a sea in ancient times!

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My mama, mom, and grandma joined me in climbing way up into the dunes. Just to be safe, we stayed where we could see the car parked below. The dunes, if you get lost, can be very disorienting! I loved sitting on the top of a dune and filling out my Junior Ranger booklet.

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On our way out of the park, we stopped to do a little hike on a raised walkway through a biological crust area. The biological crust is composed of sand and lots of bacteria that secrete goo that makes the sand bumpy on top. It sounds gross, but it's really awesome. I saw bunny tracks in the crust, but I didn't see any animals other than birds at White Sands. I really wanted to see a lizard!

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Back at the ranger station/ visitor center, Ranger Eugene checked my Jr. Ranger booklet. I did a good job, so he awarded me an official badge! He was really nice.  We talked a bit about how I am a junior ranger at many different parks across the country.

Would you want to visit White Sands? What would you do there?

Thursday, May 19, 2016

New Mexico Again!

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Hi everyone! Thanks for celebrating 10 years of blogging with me.  Now it's time to get back to my regular adventures! In April, I was able to travel to New Mexico with my mom and mama to visit my grandmother! We had a great time; I ate a lot of green chile stew, stuffed sopaipillas, and even green chile/garlic pistachios! Yum!

This picture is of me at Pecos National Historic Site- I went there in 2012 as well. You can read about it at this link.  It's a really nice park- the site of an Indian Pueblo and a Spanish mission.

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The last time I was at Pecos NHP, it was freezing cold and rainy! This time, it was warm and sunny which made it a lot more fun. I didn't take my photos because I was concentrating on spending time with my moms; my grandmother had to work.

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The next day, after my grandma got off work, we went on an adventure! I put on my new shirt with this cool toucan on it. My grandma also gave me the beautiful necklace I'm wearing in the photo.

Anyway, our adventure was to Southern New Mexico! The photo of me in my toucan shirt is from Valley of Fires. Valley of Fires is a lava flow in the Tularosa basin.  It's so cool! I wish my parents had taken more photos but we only stopped for a few minutes on our way to our destination.

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In my next post, I'll talk about my main adventure in New Mexico!

Have you ever traveled to visit family? Where did you go?


Tuesday, May 10, 2016

10 Years of Blogging: Remembering 2014 and 2015

2014

Inky's New Year 2014

Hi my friends! This is the last of my looking back posts. The next post will be about my latest adventure! Anyway, here come the memories! 2014 started off by the New Year tree as always.  I think New Year may be my favorite holiday.

Rainbow Spirit Sweater

I was very lucky to receive a beautiful rainbow sweater to wear on chilly days. Isn't it cute? I love it so much.

Inky at Mesa Verde National Park

My first big adventure of 2014 was a trip to the Four Corners region- the area of the country where New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, and Colorado meet.  This is me way up in the mountains at Mesa Verde National Park! The ancient buildings behind me were built by my mama's ancestors, the Ancestral Puebloans.

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Another park we visited on that trip was Hovenweep National Monument! Mama, Mom, and my grandma took me on a great hike through the park.

Inky Reads!

Back in New York City, I started my homeschooling year with a trip to the public library in my neighborhood! My favorite book is "Swallows and Amazons" by Arthur Ransome. What's yours?

Ready, Set, Go!

In December I departed for one of my biggest adventures! I packed all kinds of stuff to keep me entertained on the flights.

Nosara Retreat

Finally, after lots of flying and driving, we arrived in Costa Rica! It was so green and beautiful there.

With the Mama Sea Turtles at Playa Ostional

One of the highlights of my Costa Rica trip was meeting the mama sea turtles as they laid their eggs on the sand! Wow!

Sunset on Playa Guiones

Costa Rica was amazing! It was great to be there with my parents to celebrate the end of 2014.

2015


Happy Valentine's Day!

In 2015, I celebrated Valentine's Day by making cards for my friends!

Snowmageddon 2015!

We had a big snowstorm and I played in the snow until my head got cold!

Dimetrodon

I love going to the Natural History Museum. Luckily, my family became members in 2015!

Happy Pride 2015!

In June I celebrated Pride! I love being the daughter of two moms; I'm so lucky to live in a queer family!

Fun on the Beach

One of my favorite summer hangouts is the beach! I took a sailboarding lesson and had a lot of fun.

Inky @ Snowbird!

In August I traveled to Utah to visit my best friend, Violet! This is me at the top of a mountain after riding the tram at Snowbird.

Inky @ Jacob Riis Beach

The water at the beaches in NY stays cold for a long time, but it really warms up in early September! I went to Jacob Riis Beach with my family to enjoy the last few days of summer.

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In November, I celebrated my 11th birthday with an Octonauts-themed party! My friends Petra Gray, Brooke, and Coral came to celebrate with me.

That was 2014 and 2015! I hope you enjoyed these posts remembering my first ten years of blogging! Looking forward to more years to come!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

10 Years of Blogging: Remembering 2012 and 2013

Inky's new poster

Hi everyone! I just got back from a very exciting trip. However, before I share my photos of my adventures, I have more posts to share about my memories of the past ten years. In this photo, I'm enjoying New Year! My family celebrates with a "elka," or New Year's Tree.

Inky's New Boots

This is me in my courtyard in my rainboots that my dear friend Alaina sent me from Germany. I'm also wearing a beautiful sweater made by Qute from etsy.

Happy Valentine's Day!

On Valentine's Day in 2012, my moms gave me a giant balloon bouquet with red heart balloons, pink balloons, and a special balloon that says "I love you" in Russian.  I was adopted from Khabarovsk, Russia when I was little, and my family loves Russian culture.

Pueblo Bonito Overlook

In April of 2012, I took a trip to New Mexico with my moms to visit my family there. While I am Russian, my Mama is American Indian and her family lives in New Mexico. This photo is of me after my family climbed up above Pueblo Bonito at Chaco Culture National Historical Park.

Petrified Forest

That summer, I traveled to the southwest again! In this photo, I am visiting Petroglyph Forest National park.

Summer & Inky at Jacob Riis Beach

My family loves going to the beach. Here I am wading in the Atlantic Ocean at Jacob Riis Beach at the Gateway National Recreation Area.

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In addition to big trips, my family also takes shorter trips. This picture is outside the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, DC.

Nutcracker 2012

Another favorite family tradition is our annual trip to see The Nutcracker at Lincoln Center. I normally don't like to wear dresses, but it's so fun to dress up when going to the theatre!

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In 2013, my friends Zoya Yumiko and Violet celebrated the Japanese holiday of Hina Matsuri with me.  We set up a set of Hello Kitty imperial dolls and Zoya gave me a special greeting card!

Happy Easter from Inky!

My family loves to celebrate Easter! Here I am wearing a dress (yuck!) and enjoying my Easter basket. Some years my family celebrates Orthodox Easter and some years we celebrate Catholic Easter, so I get to experience both!

Inky & Uglydolls

I'd have to say that my favorite toys are Uglydolls! In the summer of 2013, there was a special Hello Kitty Icebat! See it in the back with the red bow?

Governors Island!

Fête Paradiso was a really cool French-themed fair on Governor's Island. My parents took me to ride the rides and earn a Junior Ranger badge there. It was so cool to visit an island in New York harbor!

Hamilton Grange National Memorial

I also became a Junior Ranger at Hamilton Grange, the home of Alexander Hamilton. Little did I know how famous Alexander Hamilton was about to get!

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In November 2013, I celebrated my birthday with a Totoro-themed birthday party! My friends Piper, Coral, and Violet were in attendance. Don't you love my Totoro hat?

Inky's Holiday pics

I wore a beautiful gold dress to the Nutcracker that year.

Inky at the British Museum

My biggest trip of 2013 was to London in the United Kingdom! My Auntie Liz and Uncle Terry got married at the end of December and I was there to celebrate with my family.  In this picture, I'm exploring the British Museum! It was amazing.

So those are the highlights of 2012 and 2013. Wow! When I look back at each year, I'm amazed at how privileged I am to explore our world.  What were your favorite memories of those two years? See you next time as I remember 2014 and 2015!
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