Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Date Cookie

I think one of the favorite desserts around here is a special cookie made with mashed dates rolled inside.

An American friend of mine was learning how to make them from her neighbor, and she invited me to come.  I was a little late because I had language class, but I got in on most of it.

My friend mashed the dates flat on the plastic with oil on her fingers so that they wouldn't stick to her.

Her neighbor rolled the dough out on a tri-legged wooden table.  

Most ladies use this small table for either rolling dough or cutting veggies or meat since most of ladies cook on the floor.  It's quite handy.

After rolling the dates in the dough, she would cut little slits in the top for the classic look that you can see in the pan above.

When the pan was full (and this was just pan one of two and a half), the neighbor brushed them with raw egg before we baked them.

Making them was quite time-consuming, and I will certainly appreciate them more when I am offered them next time.

We ran out of dates before the dough ran out, so on our third batch, we made half a pan of just "cookies."

To be honest, these were never my favorite thing to eat when I visited homes, but after making them, I'm endeared to them a little more.

I kind of look forward to the next time I get to try them, and guess what?

Newroz is right around the corner.  Remember that?

Monday, February 20, 2017

Celebrating the kids

Usually awards for schools take place at the end of the year, but the school that our kids are attending, doesn't do any "honoring" in May.  However, they principal scheduled something for January 18th, and awards were given based on their first term's performance.

All three of our kids were given the same two awards.
One for maintaining a 90% average or higher, and one for maintaining a 95% average or higher.

It seems strange to me, because if they had just been given the one for 95% average, it would have covered both of them, but oh well.

The lower one was presented by the US Consulate General, and the higher one was presented by the principal.

This is the principal with all of them.

It's so rare that I get a picture of all of them, so even though this was taken in a cafeteria with some strangers in the background, I figured I would let you see it.


Afterward, to celebrate, we visited a place that we had heard was in town, but we really weren't sure whether to believe it or not.

It used to be called "P.J.'s Pizza," but now...

This is pretty amazing!  The pizza actually tastes the same!!  The only "wrong" thing about the night was that they served garlic mayonnaise with the pizza instead of garlic butter sauce.

As I checked out, I asked the man if there was any chance they were ever going to serve the garlic butter sauce, and he said, "Yes!"  Apparently, the garlic butter sauces were "misplaced" in shipping.  He said in few weeks they might arrive.

We shall see...

Happy days

Sunday, February 19, 2017

The Center of the City

We had a guest the third week of January, and we took her to see the center of the city.  This cute girl went with us. 

She loves to see the fountains, but unfortunately, they weren't on.  Maybe the winter weather and the cold has kept them from being turned on.

Many people were out in the sunshine, enjoying a day of nice weather.

 I started noticing all the little places downtown where they sell tea for men to drink.

All of the chairs were set in rows. 

Can you see all the men sitting in rows of plastic chairs across the street?

It's nothing much, but I thought it was interesting because in the States we would gather in circles to visit and converse.

This was only my second time to come downtown since arriving here a year ago. 

There is a big bazaar and lots of places to eat and drink tea, but I definitely feel like it's kind of a man's world down here. 

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Most Good Things Must Come to an End

Well, we know that not ALL good things come to an end, but for vacations, this is simply not true.

Our short two nights away was a lot of fun and much-needed, but we knew we needed to head back down the mountain, into the valley.

We can't always live on the mountain top, right?

Here comes our ride back down.

Our chariot.

We made it down the mountain, loaded up the car, and went to see a nearby waterfall.

It used to be covered with a few ramshackle buildings that included a place to sit and drink tea.  
The buildings looked VERY shaky and thankfully have been torn down. 

There were many men working on new construction.  
It looked like a firm foundation was being built at the base of the waterfall, and a new tourist/resort place is currently being constructed.

We look forward to seeing the finished product.

In the meantime, we took a few selfies in front of the construction.

The End.