cooking, drink, food, health, Uncategorized

Apple season

It’s time to make apple cider, don’t you think? I never knew there are different kinds of it but fortunately the book in the library shed the light recently. Cider hard and sweet by Ben Watson is a good find where I learned that you can also make a pear drink called Perry and mix it with cider half and half to get Pider. English and French have their own kinds of cider that are known to be bittersweet. Natural carbonation is the best if you can get it right. So much fun to even think of the process of making it!

An apple a day they say… A new twist on it is a bottle a day keeps the doctor away. Here I am not sure about the content since there’s also apple wine I haven’t try, only heard about. Apple vinegar diluted in water is recommended in your diet as a morning drink to loose weight, it can also be used in cooking as a substitute for vinegar.  Apple butter is something I read about, would love to try it one day.

There are so many ways to use apples in cooking: all kind of pies and salads come to mind. My mom would dry cut apples and keep them all winter long to make kompot or eat them as snacks. Kompot is stewed fruit where seasonal fruits and berries will come in handy. In winter we use dried apricots, apples, pears and / or plums to make a drink called uzvar, traditional drink in Ukraine.

Have you tried baked apples stuffed with raisins and nuts? Really healthy dessert for picky eaters and connoisseurs. In Turkey they serve apple tea to the tourists to demonstrate hospitality but never drink it themselves. In Germany they make apple strudel for dessert and in Poland it is Sharlotka, apple pie with a cool name. Talking about cool names, Steve Jobs used apple to start a well-known brand you have probably heard about.

 

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beauty, culture, experience, travel, Uncategorized

Ukraine

ua

August 24 is Independence Day in Ukraine. It’s a big deal for Ukrainians since latest events have not been the greatest. Lots of people immigrated different places still dreaming to come back one day. Who knows maybe in the future things will be back to normal? Keep praying and hoping for the better.

If you ever want to travel somewhere nice and cheap go visit Ukraine. I miss it terribly! Kyiv is the best city I have ever lived, for me it’s the place where miracles happen and history is still alive. Explore and you will be surprised how much more there is to discover…

This country has a lot of problems and stuff but it feels real with four seasons, good and bad smells, street markets and all the pleasures of public transport. People are so direct, sometimes you wish they weren’t that way and women are so beautiful that it’s hard to keep up to par. Population is mostly poor, there is no middle class but it doesn’t seem that way.

Ukrainians love foreigners thinking that all of them are milliners. Foreign culture is considered to be better, a lot of loan words are used just because it’s cool. Traditional food is great, hospitality depends on the money paid and part of the country you are in. If you want to see the contrast go to Lviv where people speak Ukrainian and Odessa which is mostly Russian, fantastic tourist destinations with tons of things to enjoy. I wish I was there to be your guide…

 

health, love, Uncategorized, wellness

I want to be forever young

обои (3)How to stay young? this question is something we have in common no matter what country or culture we came from. Rich and poor, black and white, men and women – we all want to know where the fountain of youth is.

Can you afford such luxuries as good sleep, healthy food and a steady relationship? It’s not as easy as a beauty shot or a gym membership but it works. Invest your time today and you will feel better tomorrow. Especially if you think of your food as a source of energy.

I decided to stop worrying about all the things I can’t change in life. Trying to embrace it is not easy. I realized I will not be rich or famous but I can survive I guess. There are things that I can’t do, there are people I can’t change, there are places I won’t see. So what? I can still find the reason to be happy and grateful.

I feel like being outside is a benefit for all of us. It helps living in real time and gives a perspective. It opens a new world providing some food for thought.

Spending time with your loved ones makes the world go round. And yes it helps you stay happy and young. It’s all in your hands, just live it, make it happen no matter what!

 

inspiration, learning, motivation, self help, Uncategorized

Design your life

What makes up your day? Mine consists of so many little things that I can hardly keep all of them in mind. Sometimes it’s hard to tell which one is a game changer. Think about

  • Food and exercise
  • People you deal with
  • Music, books and movies
  • Social networks
  • Living conditions

To make your life better you need to grab the bull by the horns and be responsible for your own happiness. Give up your fears and start living the dream!

  1. Buy / make decent food, plan a week in advance
  2. Walk / run 30-40 minutes a day, do other fitness activities if you like
  3. Minimize time with irritating people, maximize positive exposure
  4. Be selective with the books / movies you enjoy, pick the inspirational ones
  5. Hide / unfollow negative posts / people online. Time yourself while in cyberspace
  6. Make your home comfy: clean, fix and declutter as much as you can
  7. Love what you get, get what you love

The process of designing your life can take longer than you think. I started 2-3 years ago, some changes are obvious and some are still in progress, I wish it could be done overnight but it’s a process.

culture, experience, immigration, learning, motivation, self help, survival, Uncategorized

How to survive in a new culture

Working with American teens made me think about useful tips I can share with new teachers.

The culture I found myself in is a mix of Latino and African-American youth with a minority of whites and Asians. Just for your information I came from Ukraine where the population is very homogeneous.

The school environment is not usually conducive to making friends with students but I keep trying anyway.

  1. Listen to their music. God only knows how much I hate rap but this is what they love. I make myself listen to the lyrics, it’s quite weird for strangers like me.
  2. Eat their food. Teens love junk food, it never looks or tastes great. But you should be brave enough to try it. I also go to cafeteria once in a while to experience the agony they have to endure every day.
  3. Don’t ignore the things that matter. Two of them are mentioned above but figuring out the rest can be tough. One thing that I noticed is you have to pronounce their name right.
  4. Ask questions showing genuine interest. When doing this you should be ready to deal with their answers which are not always easy. Reflect on them.
  5. Be a good student. Take notes to remember new words and concepts, learning new language / dialect is always fun. You will be tried and tested a lot.
  6. Mind your body language more than anything else. Respect yourself and the people around you.
  7. Stay positive and keep learning despite making mistakes.

This list is not all encompassing but gives you a general idea. Good luck!