Tag: <span>food</span>




I remember loving snow days. As a teenager, I would have the house to myself and all the time in the world to lounge, read and … and sleep. As an adult BS (before Sophia), I would spend the day working from home also in my pajamas and round out the evening with a super comforting dinner and drinks. As a mom, snow day means juggling two kids and work without our nanny. It means getting up super early to work, working through their nap and then, working some more when they go to bed. There were pajamas and TV but only for Sophia. We let ourselves go, and permitted Sophia to watch two cartoons. The first was My Neighbor Totoro and the second was Ratatouille.

We couldn’t just plop both kids in front of the TV all day and so there was plenty of other activities going on. We structured the day to include self-play, science, crafts and reading. Sophia played with Laser Pegs and learned the basics of circuits.

Eliza helped take the circuits apart :). We also learned about plants and how they come from seeds. Since I best learn through application, we planted an avocado seed in a container hoping it sprouts. Sophia checks our little seed every hour or so looking for the “leaves”.




The delicious avocado that housed the seed in our science lesson became a part of our mostly healthy and most definitely delicious lunch. This is broccoli, bean and avocado salad with miso-yogurt dressing and topped with pumpkin and sesame seeds. That was served with a french onion grilled cheese. Mmmmm…. so good.


And since it is likely that you’re already hungry after looking at the picture above, I may as well share a few more dishes from this week’s food roundup. Here we have Saba no misoni which is Mackarel stewed in miso served atop japanese sushi rice and topped with seaweed. This dish is a favorite at our house especially for Sophia. Salty and sweet and topped with crunchy seaweed makes every bite oh so very satisfying.mackrelAnd lastly, you can never have enough roast chicken though the usual method of tossing a bird in the oven can get a bit boring. We tried Jamie Oliver’s roast chicken in milk and were very happy with the results. It was perhaps the most tender and moist roasted chicken I’ve had and as a bonus, our house was perfumed by garlic and cinnamon while it baked.


The weekend is upon us and with it the promise of warmer weather (seriously, though I also am a skeptic at this point), more delicious meals, more playing, more science learning and just … more.

Cookery Crafts Flavors Hubby Cooks Life Moments Sophia Cooks

One can classify my early childhood as idyllic. Being ten years younger than my sister, I am the baby of the family. I enjoyed my sister’s [almost] undivided attention; She taught me how to read, played with me and was and still is the person I admire the most and absolutely adore.

Baku was a lovely place to be a kid. The city is unique, a perfect melding of European and Islam architecture.


The people are warm and generous showcasing Middle Eastern sensibilities and the food, oh, the food so delicious. The markets were always brimming with unique, exotic, always ripe fruits and vegetables. Some of my very favorite dishes are really Azeri. The locals are masters in utilizing herbs, greens, lettuces and eggplants, peppers into their cooking.

The remainder of my childhood was less idyllic and can be characterized best by uncertainty: 1. we were refugees in a war, 2. my dad retired, and 3. my family moved to the United States.

I don’t remember everything from my time as a refugee in Kiev, but I do remember realizing how much I missed my dad once we came back in the Spring of 1990. He stayed back as a member of the armed forces assisting in establishing order in the city that was ravaged by war. I don’t know of a single family that wasn’t impacted by that conflict. Baku was never the same after we returned in 1990 and we never felt safe. I heard gunshots nightly from then until 1991 when we left. Even now, when I watch the news and I see conflict and human suffering, I have a very real understanding of what that is.

Life Past Present