About Me

I’m Keely, or at least I am most of the time. Sometimes I am called Ms. O, and that’s pretty cool too. I grew up on the coast of Maine, and then took off over the horizon for adventures when I figured I was grown-up enough.


I used to live and teach and grow a lot of my own food in Arkansas, and I wrote about that.


Currently, I’m living in an Alaskan village, teaching school and aspiring to arctic badassery. I write about that.

I am still having those adventures, and I still zoom off toward the horizon on tangents that no one was expecting (like a few years ago, when I was suddenly living in the middle of nowhere in the middle of an arctic winter). This isn’t a travel journal or a teacher’s story. It’s not about good food or life in Alaska. This is my Keely story, and I write it here because I want people (especially people I love) to love what I love: kids, art, the coast of Maine, making good things from the ground up, playing outside, and, increasingly, the far north.

16 thoughts on “About Me

  1. Hey Keely, any chance you’ll be on the Kenai or in the Denali/Fairbanks area in late spring/early summer? We’ll be in Alaska for about 6 weeks, but I don’t know if the timing corresponds with school holidays. Just thought it would be fun to meet up with you ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Hey Nicole! That’d be freaking awesome. I get out of school around mid-May. I’m not sure what my summer plans are yet, but there’s been talk of hanging out on the Kenai at some point, and I need to take some classes for my certification, maybe in Fairbanks. We’ll for sure be in touch as I know more. Congrats on the wildlife rehab gig, by the way. And the tres chic pants. If I can keep off my skis long enough some weekend, I am going to try to figure out how to use my sewing machine for a couple of similar projects.

      • Oh cool, maybe it’ll work! That would be awesome! We’ll probably leave here in late April and head for the Kenai, then up to Denali/Fairbanks in late May/early June, all depending on the snow melt so we can get some hikes and paddling in … somewhere ๐Ÿ™‚ Thx for the congrats, I’m so stoked about the wildlife rehab. Have to work on the pants though – with the black bum patch it feels like wearing diapers.

  2. Keely, not sure if you have heard but Matt Larson will be back in Alaska for the Summer. Not so far North this time he will be somewhere along the Yukon R. tributaries (Either on the east fork Andreafsky River or the Gisasa River). Working on salmon weirs for the USF&W Service. Finally got a foot in the Federal door! I am sure future adventurous opportunities will abound for this hard working young man! Hope you are doing well. Mark Juenemann

  3. I have been offered a position up there. What is it like? What is the housing, internet and cell service in Venetie? Any information would help. Thanks Micki

  4. I live and teach on the coast of Maine and frequently visit Holbrook with my students. My Alaska certification requirements are almost complete, giving me opportunities after I “retire” next year. Looking forward to following your blog!

  5. Hi Keely! Loved your journal. Made me feel like I was there. I wish you had documented your time in Fairbanks and on the Kenai. Fished the Kenai years ago and loved it. Thanks again! Hope you will record future journeys.
    Sandpoint, ID

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