Most of the year I wear socks to bed. When it gets 50 degrees outdoors, I think winter has come. And soon, I'll take my pea coat out of storage to get ready for winter.

Needless to say, I am no fan of winter. But something strange happened a year or so ago. I was channel surfing when I came to the Discovery Channel. The evening feature was "Alaska: The Last Frontier."

They were showing snow covered mountains and then ice-covered lakes. Ugh! I shivered. However, the scenery was breathtaking. At the start of the show they explained it was about a family homesteading in a remote part of Alaska miles from any towns.

As I watched, I was mesmerized. They caught me. I have watched often since then. I think you'd like it. The older couple and their grown kids are very normal. They hunt, fish, build things.

Last Sunday I watched the preview of their new season which begins this week. A few more people join them this season, including a daughter who is retiring and several bringing children.

In the preview, one of them shot a bear. Last year I saw them shoot and butcher various animals, including bears. I almost think I could butcher a moose (not that I plan to!).

Of course, the group fishes a lot. They showed a small building they built where they smoke fish and other meat too.

They have a small herd of cattle. When the cattle need to be moved, the gang takes to horseback and participates in a cattle drive.

In every episode, they do different things. There are always problems to be solved. It's fascinating to watch how they cope with things that come up.

They built a greenhouse to grow vegetables in because many would not make it outside.

These people live over 1,200 miles from the lower states. The man's father homesteaded on 640 acres 80 years ago. They all continue the tradition of life on the last frontier. I recommend you watch it.

Sheila Lisman retired in 2003 after teaching English at Sherman Junior High for three years, Hutchinson High School for 35 years and one year in Auckland, New Zealand, on exchange. Email: salisman@cox.net.