December 18, 2008

Smarter than the Average Bear

Posted in Journal tagged , , , , , , at 4:19 pm by Jenn

I finally gave up on trying to get my pictures to load to my computer the usual way and found another way to get them where I wanted them.

SO FINALLY, here are some pictures that I’ve taken over the past few days. 

Cookie Exchange – sorry to disappoint, but the pictures I took of the cookie exchange are after the actual event.  I get so wrapped up in the people that I forget about the pictures.  It’s different here than at home.  At home if someone wanted something they would just get up and get it themselves.  Here it is really like having company!  One poor woman asked me for tea and I went in the kitchen, turned the water boiler on and then totally forgot about her til I saw her about an hour later, drinking punch!  I apologized and she said not to worry about it, but still….WOW, I screwed that one up.

picture-011  This is a picture of the boxes that I gave my cookies away in.  They were too big, but they were festive!

picture-012  This picture is what was LEFT OVER after the exchange.  I had everyone bring one dozen cookies to the party and people were splitting cookies (from an RD perspective – YAY!) and skipping cookies so there were many more leftover than I thought there would be.  Of course I didn’t think they would ALL be gone, that’s for sure.  I wound up packing most of these cookies up and giving them to the Marines.  Of course most of the party participants baked cookies for the Marines too so they have a LOT of cookies to get them through the next few days at least.

picture-010  This picture shows how some of the cookies were packaged for distribution!  Very festive.

Knitting News –  I started the Palindrome scarf a few days ago.  I decided it was time to give these cables a try once and for all.

picture-015  I’m knitting this with the yarn I received in the HSKS6 swap.  It’s Patons Soy Wool Stripes in the Natural Blue colorway.  It’s really soft, I like it and cables aren’t that bad.

First snow –  Here are a few pictures that will give you an idea of what the snow looked like around my apartment.  Danny’s pictures were much better.

picture-016  Our balcony…We are almost at the top of the building so I was surprised to see that much accumulation on our little balcony…I guess the wind must have really been blowing.

picture-018  View from the balcony.  It wasn’t a lot of snow, not even an inch, but it was enough to cover up the dust and some of the brown and make it look pretty for a while.

Airport Bazaar – This is for you Jen!

picture-029  Outside it was a cold, yucky day.  This area of the bazaar sold fabrics.

 

picture-031  Inside, if you can call it that.  It’s just kind of got a roof, not really a solid roof, just pieces with plastic tarps to cover holes.  Anyway, here is a picture of just one of the many purse stalls.  Notice a theme?  Black…everything is black here…ok, well that isn’t true some things are lime green or REALLY bright red.  LOL

picture-030  This is the sweater/clothing section….for as far as you can see down the aisle…sweaters.  Also notice the cart?  This one is empty and there isn’t that much foot traffic, but in other areas there are a LOT of people and carts going in both directions.  They drive the carts like they drive the cars, crazy fast with no regard to other people.  One cart driver actually had the nerve to push me out of his way….I said in my best Russian “EXCUSE ME” and then in my best English, another word that I won’t write because I don’t want to have to label this post as “Adult Content” for holidailies. 

picture-032  Here you have more purses and some bed coverings.  It’s so random.  Really there is not any real rhyme or reason to why these bedspreads are by the purses and not by the other bedspreads a few aisles over.  Who knows?

picture-028  The (a) persimmon cart.  These persimmon look like they’ve seen better days.  They’ve probably been driven up and down the aisles of the airport bazaar for a few days now.  I haven’t seen it, but I”m sure there’s got to be a fruit section here somewhere.  Also, let me point out the seeds/nut shells, plastic bags and bottle caps.   You can’t walk very far in Baku without encountering one of these items.  I was lucky enough to capture a picture of them all together.  One big “debris” family. 

picture-025  Shoes, many many stalls of shoes….notice the rack of stiletto boots? The color?  Black of course, to match all of those black bags two aisles over.   I wish I would have focused more on that.  I have YET to photograph any really good stiletto pictures for you. 

picture-024  This is not “the pashmina” stall, but just one of the many pashmina stalls scattered throughout the bazaar.  Pashminas while popular, do not rate a full aisle.

picture-026  And last, but not least, while I was photographing shoes these two jokers approached me.  I thought they were offering to take a picture of me, I politely declined.  Instead they wanted me to take a picture of them…with my camera…a picture they would never see.  Okay.  Here’s your picture fellas!

So there you have  it, the Airport Bazaar.

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December 12, 2007

Cure for SSS (second sock syndrome)

Posted in Journal, Purls of Wisdom, What's for Dinner tagged , , , , , at 3:02 am by Jenn

Move to Belarus!  I can’t believe it.  I actually found myself wanting to knit the second sock.  The battery on my camera is dead (but charging).  I promise to take a picture and post it tomorrow.  In knitting this second sock, I’ve decided that I’d like to try a circular needle instead of using the double pointed ones.  I’m using 4 and it just seems like so much work.

Tomorrow is Wednesday (actually today is Wednesday) and you know what that means….MAIL!  I’m hoping my needles are in there, I’m doubting, but hopeful.  I’ve also ordered some goodies for my yarn swap partner and some random stocking items for Scott, so maybe those will arrive also. 

I’m finally recovered from “Pump it Up” and ready to give it another go.  Scott mentioned going to the gym on Wednesday.  I’m thinking cardio will be a good choice, and not too rough on the legs (note to self – charge IPod!)

I had a horrible lesson on Monday and decided to drop out of class until after the first of the year.  I’ve also requested a new instructor.  I’m a firm believer that attempting to learn Russian is painful enough without being verbally assaulted by the instructor.  I need to learn this language, but I don’t need to be bullied in the process. 

Scott and I noticed today that it is always dark here.  Now we know why they issue “happy lights” to everyone (picture of that tomorrow too).  It’s dark at around 8:00am and again at around 3:30pm.  The sun really doesn’t come out it just stays kind of grey all day.  My poor amarylis doesn’t even want to grow.  I’ll have to plug in the happy light for sure tomorrow.  They say it will stay lighter, longer in January.  Let’s hope so.    

I worked with the cook at the Marine house today.  She’s a very nice Belarusian woman named Irena.  We made Japanese Chicken Wings and Green Bean Casserole.  She was thrilled to learn some new recipes.   She asked for a lasagna, zucchini bread and bean soup recipe also.  I told Scott she really needs a Crock-Pot, she’s thrilled to see what it can do.  She’s never used one.  I explained to her that she can come to work, throw a bunch of stuff in it, turn it on and go home, 8 hours later dinner is ready without a lot of “work” on her part.  This will come in really handy for her on Fridays’ when she cooks meals (dinner) for the entire weekend.  I guess we should probably get her a cookbook too.  We also discussed things she’d like to try making, but has trouble getting ingredients for.  She mentioned cookies.  There is NO peanut butter, chocolate chips, cocoa powder, baking chocolate or vanilla extract in Belarus.  Thankfully we can order from Helsinki so she’ll be able to make cookies and cakes in a few weeks.

Mom, can you send some vanilla beans?  There’s plenty of vodka here and we discussed making homemade vanilla extract.  I’d like to give it a try.

November 20, 2007

Max’s new coat

Posted in Journal, Max's World tagged , at 8:19 pm by Jenn

Dressed for winter

The winters here are brutally cold so even little Max needed a new coat for Belarus.  Here he is in his brand new parka.  He loves the coat, doesn’t care for the boots too much.  It will take me and Scott together to get a picture of that.  He is a wild man when his boots are on.  They help to protect his paws from the salt though so it is worth the fight (and the stares from the Belarusians).

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