Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Forget the Tricks..Treats Please!


If you're going to try and say Halloween in Russian (please do!), it looks something like this:


Which I find hilarious because transliterated it looks (and sounds) something like this:

Hell-oo-een. Say that with a fierce Russian "L", stick the "H" in the back of your throat, and you'll have it about right.

Whether it's Halloween or Helloween for you, I have to say I'm having a lovely day! While I haven't fully embraced this holiday in my adult years (translation: ALWAYS trying to find a last-minute costume, which typically leaves me cranky and looking like a walking yard sale), I do love having an excuse for a good party. Due to the onslaught of a minor cold, which has made me an opera outcast, I was forced to restrain my inner-party and celebrate in my cabin. Otherwise known as an apartment.

True to form, my festivity centered around food. Tonight? A Halloween tradition: Mom's homemade chili recipe...minus the chili powder. It might have tasted a bit like my makeshift yard sale costumes look, but it was festive nonetheless!
Also on the menu, my newest genius which comes from whence most of my genius juice extractor. Homemade hot apple cider! While the spice combination is still in the experimentation stages, it's hard to go wrong with fresh apple juice and cinnamon goodness. I firmly believe that perfecting this recipe will be my key to surviving my first full-on Moscow winter. Fingers crossed. And legs and just about everything possible. It's just started getting cold and I'm already wimping out...
Last, but definitely not least, the TREATS!

I've always been a candy lover and I remember a particularly devastating Halloween (I believe I was 6) when, after only a day or so with my stash of goodies, they vanished. Even in those days I was a planner, and I had carefully rationed my treats to make it through at least Christmas, if not longer. Farewell days of carefully constructed Halloween bag was nowhere to be found. We moved from our rental home that winter and only when we moved the fridge was my happiness recovered. Only to be shattered upon learning I couldn't eat my candy after 5-ish months behind the fridge.

This year I only have a half-size fridge to worry about consuming my candy, but given the temperatures, I didn't feel like suiting up and going door to door. Nevermind trying to say "trick-or-treat" in Russian. Luckily, treats still managed to find me. This evening's candy stash? Tasty truffles, delivered straight from Vienna by the hands of my first visitor! Truffles, delicious. A familiar face? The real treat. Next on the docket: sugar milk. My doorbell rang this evening and my neighbor was kind enough to introduce me to this Russian specialty. Still trying to figure out the pasty, sweet milk product. Regardless, it goes in the treat pile and adds a tally to the list of sweet gestures by my Russian colleagues. Add a Russian chocolate bar to the mix, top it off with an American delicacy, Reeses' PB Cups, and I'm going to count this Halloween a sugary success.
How are you celebrating my friends? Hoping that all of you in the Eastern USA are staying dry and sheltered, with scores of sugar to help you along your way!

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