Shut Up About Eighteen Sweet Summers

This summer, I decided that I missed my kids and wanted to spend more time with them, so I bit the bullet and gave the nanny the summer off, dramatically cut my hours (flinching as I await blowback from my partners), and decided that I would be the one  spending blissful summer afternoons eating strawberries … Continue reading Shut Up About Eighteen Sweet Summers

Tis the season for identity crisis: the Elf dilemma

'Tis the season. The season to assert my Jewishness, like, hard. Christmas season. Okay, let me correct that. I don't actually need to assert my Jewishness per se because I am Jewish AF as far as ethnic identities go, but it's my kids. Take the Catholic spouse and add to that NOT living in Brookline, MA where … Continue reading Tis the season for identity crisis: the Elf dilemma

Theory of relativity

Just the other day, we were remembering how I got food poisoning as a child while on vacation in Ukraine on the Azov sea. What happened was this. In communist Russia, food was a commodity not always readily available, especially in remote towns, and especially things like sugar, ketchup, tea - these things were usually … Continue reading Theory of relativity

Why I married my husband

Have I ever said why I decided I needed to marry my husband? I have talked quite a bit about how it's great that he is my husband at the moment because all evidence points to me being unable to survive without him, but I don't think I've ever actually described the confluence of events that … Continue reading Why I married my husband

It takes a village: Christmas time in the Basque country

What exactly is a pueblo remains a difficult concept to explain to those who don't see it for themselves.  A pueblo is a village, or a town, but rather than a strict geographical definition, it's more of a way to describe a community.  Also, it's a people or the people.  The word also carries with it a … Continue reading It takes a village: Christmas time in the Basque country

Why the Basques don’t need Santa Claus

December 25, 2007   As an outsider looking onto what is completely routine and normal in the town of Portugalete, of Bizkaia, País Vasco, España, I note things to myself that people here take for absolute granted. For example, I am constantly aware of the ethnic pride-slash-mild superiority complex that perfumes the air. I get … Continue reading Why the Basques don’t need Santa Claus

My first Thanksgiving

Once in a while, I meet an innocent ignoramus who'll ask me with a straight face: "do they celebrate Thanksgiving in Russia?" I usually reply, "Well, it's a holiday that started because people wanted to celebrate the Pilgrims arriving in America, so... no.  No Native Americans in, you know, Russia." Russian immigrants like us celebrate … Continue reading My first Thanksgiving