What is Your Sundog Story?
Founded Sundog Media Nov 1996 – Joe and I met at University of Idaho and dreamed one day we’d own a business where I was the accounting right hand gal and he was the artist dreamer/director. In 1996, we moved to Alaska and Joe started our graphic design business in Anchorage. By day, I worked in my degreed profession as a full time auditor for Mikunda, Cottrell and Co. CPAs. By night, when I was in town and not auditing in a remote Alaskan village, I was working beside him, supporting his talents with mine and learning the basics in design, typesetting, etc. In 1998, Sundog Media added website design, development and hosting to the business and I began working full time with Joe wherever needed. My role as a Sundog has varied greatly over the years. And in 2008, Sundog Media purchased another Alaskan web company, Web Weavers of Fairbanks, AK expanding our team enough that I have been able to concentrate more on just accounting and some domain management. I feel blessed that we have had the opportunity to put together a talented, technical, detail oriented team to provide such advanced services to our clients and not have to keep up with all the technology myself.
What is Your Alaska Story?
After 6 years of marriage and Idaho living, my husband and I realized we needed a change in our lives. We were stagnating spiritually and not doing so well with our financial decisions either. So, we sold most our belongings, vehicles and our newly built home and purchased a truck, travel trailer and tons of cold weather gear. I quit my job with the Washington State Auditor’s Office and we headed north; with a quick stop at Mt. Rainier to do a winter climbing weekend on the way just for kicks. We were on the adventure of a lifetime, or so it felt. 😉
It took a short 5 days to arrive in Tok, Alaska where my adventure loving husband deserted me! He was pumping gas at a gas station and sent me into the store to purchase some food and supplies. When I came out, our 52+ foot long truck and trailer was nowhere to be seen. Honestly! He had disappeared! I couldn’t believe it. I was wandering around looking so lost that a police man kindly asked me if he could help. Still in shock, I explained Joe was filling up our 52′ long truck and trailer set up with gas while I shopped and when I returned to the gas station with 6-7 bags of items, he was gone! How could such a large vehicle disappear…? In Tok?!! You do know there is only 1 street in Tok, right?! Ok maybe not. 🙂 After a 15 minute search (during which the station cashier verified 3 times that Joe truly had paid and driven off without me) we discovered he’d driven around behind the gas station to fill up propane… Yep, life’s that exciting with my husband. 🙂
We had decided to avoid looking in Alaskan newspapers so as to avoid feeling we needed to find a job right away but that only lasted until a small cafe in Palmer where Joe sat down with a cup of coffee. He couldn’t resist and within a week he was riding in a 2 person helicopter to the Talaheim River where he was to be a Fishing Guide on a remote Alaskan river and I was to be a cook and house cleaner for the summer… The story continues with just as many unanticipated adventures which are detailed in photos we love to share. Basically, it’s my pleasure to be an Alaskan and raise our children here. I love how nothing is predictable except people, and even they aren’t when they’re Alaskans.
What Do You Do For Fun?
I home school our 5 boys, the youngest 3 – triplets who appeared just in time to be our 20th wedding anniversary present to each other. Who needs a trip to New Zealand and Australia when you can have spontaneous triplets instead? So yes, they now run in both our families. Children are the 2nd best blessing from God. I enjoy talking about our family, church, and business as well as sharing photos of our family on Facebook; much to Joe’s chagrin. Social Media can be quite time consuming. 🙂
For more fun, I enjoy boating and beach combing in Prince William Sound. I love fires on shore, ‘treasure’ hunting, skipping rocks, seeing sea and animal life from the boat and the shore as well as in my freezer! I enjoy catching fish; which has Sadly Diminished now that I have 5 boys catching them, and spending time with my friends. Having been raised on a small farm, I love harvesting, whatever it may be: berries, apples, fruit, fish, big game. Canning things that we’ve harvested gives me great pleasure and making things in the oven, but not on the stove. Stove top cooking requires more multi-tasking and constant attention than I have patience for. Just ask Joe, the kids or practically anyone that has been to our home! 😉
How Did You Get Into This Gig?
My father always said I’d be a good accountant because I was good with numbers. So, I attended University of Idaho, graduated with a BS in Business, Accounting Major. After college, I worked for a school district, several dentist offices, the Washington State Auditors, Alaska’s Talaheim Lodge, Mikunda, Cottrell & Co. CPAs and, of course for most of my working career, I have joined forces with Joe building Sundog Media LLC and our family.
Where Do You Get Your Inspiration?
I am inspired by God’s creation, my husband and his love of change, adventure and perfection, my late father’s Biblical knowledge, my mother’s love for people, Bible and homeschool conference speakers, my children’s energy and my friends.