23 November 2009

valuable lessons learned this fall

From Angela:
Turnips make adorable jack o'lanterns, but they don't last long...4-5 days max.

When trying to catch a house centipede, move quickly before it climbs all the way up the wall -- or worse, under your bed.

Butternut squash makes perfect 'pumpkin' pies...thanks to PickYourOwn.org.

Don't plan an entire week of lessons around a computer lab with sketchy internet connection.

When working with butternut squash, don't be surprised if a stubborn, waxy residue mysteriously and suddenly coats your hands and fingers.

There are no laws in this country that prohibit the burning of dry leaves, even if it creates a chokingly-thick cloud of smoke that envelops the entire neighborhood.

You can find any computer program you need available for free online.

Watch out for scorpions.

If you want to roast pumpkin seeds, don't leave them out to dry within the reach of a two year-old, unless you don't mind hundreds of them all over the kitchen floor.

From Jarred:
Having kids screw around in front of a camera can be a great way to teach the concepts of theme and main idea.

No one puts on a fireworks display like Disney.

Kids who normally throw away the whole fruits that accompany their school lunches will change their mind and eat them if you first take them home, mash them up, mix them with sugar, butter, and flour, and bake them at 350 degrees.

Never underestimate your child's abilities and potential.

11 November 2009

These Boots Are Made for Walking (...or are they?)


It may seem like a strange topic, but believe me, boots are an important part of Yerevanian culture. I'm not talking about snow boots, construction boots, or hiking boots (all of which should have a place in everyday life here, but inexplicably don't). The kind of boots I'm refering to are these:

Sexy, black leather, knee-high, spike-heeled, fashion boots.

Once October rolls around, THE BOOTS begin to appear on the streets, in shop windows, and on the feet of fashion-forward Armenian women everywhere. In many cases, you can actually hear them coming long before you see them!

In many parts of the U.S., particularly in Florida and other states that don't experience 'real' winters, any girl who wears boots like these would probably be [mis]taken for...ahem...a Lady of the Night. Here however, it seems for virtually all women aged 18-40, they are a necessity.

Are they inspired by Julia Roberts?

Lynda Carter?

One of the many reincarnations of Catwoman?

...Who knows? In any case, here's my photo tribute - or rather, triboot - to this fabulous, forever-iconic footwear!

Yes, this is normal grocery shopping attire!

This one's starting young.

Of course, they're not always black, nor do they always have such high heels. There are many variations in color, material, and overall design...

Hey, these really are Wonder Woman's boots!

Hey, I'm not judging. Don't believe me? Scroll up and take another look at the first picture in this entry -- those are mine! (Don't worry, they're not real leather...and they're lined with faux fur to keep my legs toasty warm all winter!)

Now, if you think this post about Armenian women's footwear is interesting, just wait until I write about the men's shoes! Thanks for reading... hajo!