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Showing posts from February, 2011

Step into my library

No time for full-length reviews right now, but here are a few books I'm reading at the moment:

Raguenaud, Virginie Bilingual by Choice: Raising Kids in Two (or More!) Languages

It's hard to flip around and find quotes again on a Kindle, but I love this book as a mother's practical advice on raising kids "bilingual." I like how family-oriented the advice is and how much the author shares about her personal experience. She has lived what she writes about. At some point I want to write a more in-depth review.

Piper, John (et al) Sex and the Supremacy of Christ (download PDF)
Piper, John This Momentary Marriage (download PDF)

So far I like both of them; more Bible study than practical advice. Piper does a good job laying the foundations for what he is going to discuss, and it helps me keep my mind focused on Christ.

Just for Fun
Alcott, Louisa May Little Men

I've slowly been working through this book, just a chapter or two at a time. Good…

The second interesting thing about going to Moscow in February... that almost a year ago to the day, I had made the same trip, also for bureaucratic purposes. This meant that I could remember a few helpful pieces of information about Moscow this time of year: 1) It's cold, even inside the train station... and 2) Stores don't open very early. 3) Therefore, getting in at 5:30 am is bad. Later is better. We got in at 7am.

We waited and waited for something to be open, so we could sit in the warmth. Finally the doors were open and we found our way to a food court. Just as we had ordered and were sitting down at the table, I looked at the time. It was 10:40 and my appointment at the Embassy was at 11:00. Panic! How had we gone from killing time to running late?

The thing about the Moscow subway is that there are many branches and it SEEMS like it will take forever to get somewhere, but in reality the stops are all quite close together, and the escalators are not so steep and slow as in St. Petersburg. It only took about 10 minutes to get to…

The first interesting thing about going to Moscow in February... that I spent Valentine's Day on a train with my fiance.

Well, sort of. We were headed to Moscow to do paperwork, and it was already 11pm when our train departed. We had "platzkart" tickets (see details here), and that meant bunkbeds in an open cabin. I had traveled platzkart to Moscow by myself before, but this time I had Andrey to protect me, drink tea with me, and tuck me in before getting into his own bunk.

Valentine's Day is usually referred to in Russia as "Lovers' Day." In the past I would wish people a "Happy Valentine's Day" and they didn't really get it. They would ask me, "Have you found someone?" It wasn't the same holiday I knew from home that was full of chocolate, conversation hearts, and movie night with the girls. But this year, I fit the Russian description.

An April wedding?

It's not what you think.

I'm not planning to walk down the aisle until summer, but we'll be applying for a marriage license as soon as we can gather the necessary documents.

Today we tried to start the process and had a bit of a wild goose chase, but we got some information we needed.

First we went to a records office to try to get an initial consultation. As we found the building and wandered up a narrow staircase, I tripped over the top step, which was, according to Russian tradition, a different height than the rest of them. I cursed the steps aloud as a smartly dressed young man opened a door to reveal an elaborately decorated reception area. But we were told it was "lunchtime" and turned away.

Back downstairs, we tried again to decipher the schedule on the door. It seriously reminded me of one of those problems in a puzzle magazine. read further/-


1st and 3rd Tuesdays: 10am-1pm
2nd and 4th Tuesdays: 3pm-5pm

Vice Chairman:

1st and 3rd Thursdays: 10am…


It's not exactly that I'm too busy for blogging.

Sometimes, other options just seem more appealing...

But I still have things to say: some book reviews, cultural observations, tangles with bureaucracy, and thoughts about life in general. Hopefully, soon.

Planning (sort of)

There is not much to report on the wedding front. A few if-then scenarios, that is all. Mainly we just need to figure out what is required of me, a foreigner, and then get cracking.

I'm pretty good at spending copious amounts of time Googling researching fairly narrow fields of knowledge (like uses of baking soda). Especially when there's something else I'm supposed to be doing.

Lately, I've been interested in bilingualism again.

I wrote a book review on here awhile back, but it's also fascinating just hearing about people's multicultural childhoods.

I know a lot of you bloggers have adopted children. In that case the English is more of a second language and the mother tongue is still there, somewhere. I wonder how it feels. Maybe similar to how I feel knowing Russian. I can think in both and sometimes I'm not even aware of which one I'm using. But my Russian is nowhere near being a native language.

Did any of you grow up hearing and/or speaking two lang…