A Quiet Year
The new duplex was finished, or at least
enough so Gail, Denvy and their two sons could live there. A garage had
been built and the garden was planted over the septic tank. Several new
houses were built in the subdivision Denvy and Gail had helped develop. All the
partners from the original partnership now lived within a block of each
other. Each family had young children of similar ages and they exchanged
It was the year of the 200th anniversary
of the United States and the Saxowskys dressed the role.
was intrigued with woodworking and bought a band saw. They had bought
some alder hardwood while in Oregon the year before and hauled it to Alaska
on the top of the red van. Denvy designed some toys and made them of wood.
Gail made puppets on her sewing machine.
were routine flea markets in Anchorage and Gail and Denvy decided to make
a couple toys and rent a booth. After one day at the market, they sold
almost everything they had made. They stayed up late into the night making
toys so that they would not be embarrassed by a lack of inventory the
The sales of toys astounded them and they
decided to expand on the idea.They
had visited afamily who operated a store ofhandmade toys in Oregon the year
beforeandthe similarities encouraged them to start a business which they namedthe Toy Mill, a paraphrase of the Toy Factory in Oregon.
The first toys were ordered by and sold to friends, including rocking
horses which soon became rocking moose.