October Update

Luhansk's Central Park
Fall is here
Neighborhood Church

Fall colors on driveway in
front of my apartement

Hello Everyone,

Life has been busy over here.  
Where did October go!  

Art Workshop
National Talent Contest for the Disabled
Cooking Club Meeting #2
Fun at Work

Since pictures speak at least 1000 words,
I will just populate this update with photos 
and captions for the photos.


October 16-17-18, 2010
Workshop Weekend for 
Finals in the Ukrainian National Talent Competition for the Disabled
Saturday, October 16, 2010
Confidence Building and Choreography Session
Workshop Leader:  Vitaly Bolodimirovich - Dramatic Arts Teacher 

Vitaly working with a performer
Vitaly Bolodimirovich - dramatic arts teacher 
who works with disabled, leading a workshop and 
choreography session
Vitaly working with dancers in a
confidence building session
Vitaly working with the wheelchair dancers
Sunday, October 17, 2010
Art Activity Workshop - We Understand Each Other
Workshop Leaders:  Peace Corps Volunteers
Wyoming McKenzie, Hailey Spencer, Nazgol Zand and Caroline
(Photos of workshop from Wyoming)
Making Name Tags-- getting acquainted
Wyoming and her activity pals
I love Wyoming's green dots on her cheeks

Nazgol and a fingerpaint specialis

Caroline and friends

Hailey, Caroline and Sveta
Sveta is a wonderful singer1
Having fun!

Peace Corps Regional Manager
(for our group) joined in the fun

Post Workshop Fun!
Monday, October 18, 2010
Ukrainian National Talent Finals Competition for the Disabled
Ukrainian National Theater, Luhansk
Students from Cultural and Drama Institute
Opening the Talent Competition
All competitors on stage
Grouped by Regions/Oblasts

Sergei, 18 yr.-old from Luhansk
Opened the Competition
Wonderful voice!

Children from the Luhansk Orphanage
All three groups on the stage 
Children from the Luhansk Orphanage

Ella and her mom, Roxanne
I spent a week with both of them at conference for the disabled.
Ella and her mom LOVE to sing and both sing very well!

A wonderful "sister act" -
also both had fun at the art workshop!

My finger painting specialist
Also a promising singer!
More of my art workshop participants dancing and having fun!

Another finger painting specialist and
also a very good singer!
Former Miss World-Ukraine competitor in background.

Mother and daughter singing together.
The song:  Mama!

Marla  - a budding author
She read one of her own poems.

Wheelchair dancer.
Another Wheelchair Dancer.

Sveta, 29-yr. old, singer
Exceptional voice.

Another group dancing and having fun!
Tatyana, my organization's director.
Receiving flowers and a standing ovation for all her work for the Festival.
Amazing young woman.
2nd Meeting of the Cooking Club
Sunday, 24 October 2010
Preparing Beer the "Mexican Way"
Salt, Limes (YES LIMES) and Ukrainian micro brew!

The Table- ready for all the food groups:
Meat, liquid protein, carbohydrates, and sugars!

Artiom, the official Cooking Group Photographer
Sergey, the official "Beer Meister"

Preparing fried apples to go with the sausage
Taya, Caroline, Wyoming and Alexie
Enjoying the results of the cooking adventure
Roman, Tanya, Sergey, Taya
Eugene, Kate, Olya
Enjoying the results of the cooking adventure
Plum Kuchen
Homemade Pork Sausage
Fried Apples
Mashed Potatoes

Cooking Club results!

Celebration Lunch
Work Colleague was just married
Monday, 25 October 2010
Celebration Lunch

My work colleagues
(l to r:) Dim-Social worker; Tatyana,-Director, Alexie- lawyer and Tatyana's husband,
Marian- office assistant, Lena- new bride and office assistant,
Irina - Office manager, Sasha- IT expert, Natalya - Press secretary
Loshya-driver, Galena - accountant

A toast to the new bride!

Enjoying life in Ukraine!

Happy Halloween to everyone!

Farewell Summer and Fall

Flower vendors in front of my apartment building
11 October 2010

It is 38 degrees outside .... inside is about 45.  The heat is officially turned on sometime in late October or early November.  I do not think I have worn this much clothing unless I was in Utah skiing.  Now I understand why the Peace Corps had us carry a 40-lb. electric heater on the train to our work assignments. 

I thought it might be fun to post a pictures of the last weeks  of summer in Luhansk.
Dancing on the Square- Sunday evening outdoor concerts

Every Sunday night in the summer in the park across the street from my apartment, the "Luhansk Municipal Orchestra" performs for 90 minutes.  There must have been 150 people dancing on the square-- on the last Sunday of September.  It was still warm then!

Luhansk City Garden Festival

The City of Luhansk had the annual "City Birthday weekend"- in September.  Luhansk is 215 years young.  One of the events was a huge outdoor garden festival, held in the park in front of the train station.  School groups had displays, local growers were selling plants, the major garden centers had displays.  Fabulous displays everywhere.

First display when entering the garden festival

An idea of the size of the garden festival

A school display- note construction paper flowers
and the rather bored student

Another entry in the City Garden Festival- model RR train and 
flowers - paper and real!

Students playing instruments that looked like carrots at the Garden Festival
Children's playground exhibit at Garden Festival

Mums for sale at the Garden Festival

"Dinner-plate" dahlias for sale at the Garden Festival

Balloon flowers for sale at the Garden Festival
Deciding which bare root rose to purchase at the Garden Festival?

Bare root rose purchased and wrapped to go home
Photos below are other fun distractions from the Garden Festival!

This motorcycle and side car are a common mode of transportation
in this area of Ukraine

Entertainment for non-garden people
Garden art (?) for sale-- Gnomes and БАБУШКА sculptures 

More garden art (?) for sale

Feng shui or "water element"- Parts other than the clam also light up
For only $30 (229 UAH), she can be "yours"
Love the name- Expert Tools!

Fall colors in the parks
Fall colors in the parks  

More information will come  as I have been to Kiev four times now for meetings and thought the next blog will be photos of Kiev.

Big hug to everyone and I hope everyone at home is doing well.


More fun photos of Luhansk, Ukraine
Church about one-half mile from my flat

Fire station about four long blocks from my flat

One of several main town parks in the center of the city

Monument to the victims of Chernobyl - the monument is behind my apartment complex

One of several places for a beer, just down the street from my flat

Park across the street from my flat where the band plays on Sunday nights.
This is where everyone dances on Sunday evenings.

Two friends playing soccer on the fields at the edge of the city of Luhansk

Celebration banner for Coal Miner's Day

My friend Bill Bauer's famous salsa - now famous in Luhansk

Local steak house advertising 30% off to celebrate on your birthday

"Foxtrot"-- our local Best Buy

Luhansk Philharmonic Concert Hall

Luhansk Philharmonic -- weekly concerts, Oct to June -- season tickets $50 for entire season

My local "chain" grocery store, Mandarin

Bliny stand on the corner of the drive to my building

Eggs, by the "each" or 10 for 50 cents.
You bring the carton.