Today we celebrated Women’s Day. This day is a VERY BIG DEAL in Ukraine. So important in fact, that everyone (or almost everyone) has a four day holiday weekend. YES… Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
And no this holiday does not replace Mother’s day in May!
Our organization celebrated with a fun festival- the young men put on aprons and recited poems of thanks to their mothers, grandmothers, aunts, sisters, friends etc.
And then, the group played fun games: taking balloons and making a lovely feminine face and adding a scarf – adding the scarf was tough on a latex balloon!
Then the entire group had fun making cards for the women in their life or we made picture frames from craft sticks, yarn and very glittery, very fun stickers! I am using the last of the fun things all my friends from home have sent to me! MY group has had a ball with all these craft items from home.
While my work is lots of fun- literally creative fun, I have also been busy with more seminars presenting what Americans do for disabled students, elementary school through college. Our organization has received funding from the United Nations Development Fund for seminars on “Inclusive Education.” It is fascinating to look out and see faces of teachers : Some teachers are so ready to move forward and have disabled children in their classrooms.
It would not be a complete blog from Caroline without a Luhansk cooking club update! Sunday, Feb. 26, we celebrated Pancake Day, well really Pancake Week in Ukraine. Rather than one day, Mardi Gras, for one last party before Lent, Ukraine celebrates the week before their Lent with Pancakes. LOTS of pancakes. The cooking club had an evening of Ukrainian pancakes and American buckwheat pancakes. The Ukrainian pancakes had cheese and fruit syrups. The American pancakes had black currants on them (because I thought I had bought blueberries) , maple syrup and bacon! A total feast before Lent.
Our Ukrainian cooks making Bliny
The American cooks making buckwheat pancakes
Bacon and pancakes…. ready for syrup!
When I finished my last blog, I had thought perhaps spring might not be far behind. I will never have a job as a weather forecaster! We have had more snow and many more cold days. We had two days where the temperature was +1 (that is 33F) and so the snow became lovely slush. And then the thermometer went back to –7 or –8 and all that slush turned to ice!
Brown ice on the sidewalks—sand is used to “melt” the ice, but it doesn’t work the way salt does. It is just very slick and very uneven.
A mini-skating pond on the side walk!
The ONLY ice I really like- and where it belongs!
To all my gal pals, celebrate Women’s Day in style. To all my guy buddies, celebrate Women’s Day with a wonderful lady!
See everyone soon! (72 days remaining!)
Big hug to all.