Can you guess what this is?
How about now?
These are my horse hair fur boots.
These babies are necessary for staying warm in the very cold weather outside.
The beading is very traditional for this area of Russia.
Besides horse hair, the most popular boots here are made of reindeer and they are very, very expensive. These were quite a bit cheaper and they still keep me warm even with one regular pair of socks on. I was starting to feel the cold slightly when I had to stand at the bus stop one day, but that was it.
This guy is selling fish and a few other items.
This is how most women are dressed; fur hat, fur coat, fur boots.
The children here are also dressed in fur.
There are a few stray dogs that run around the city, not as many as there were in Moscow. They definitely build up their up coat of fur, being outside all the time.
So I’ve heard about the cold weather a lot of people in the States are having, but I have to say that I don’t really feel much sympathy. Last week, I thought -40 C (-40 F) was cold, but of course there is always colder. Like yesterday. It was cold. Stinkin’ cold.
Lots of fog at this temperature, you can see a little below.
Violet and I on a short walk to the grocery store a little while ago when it was a few degrees higher.
My hands were out of my mittens just briefly to take the picture.
Right now, it is winter break for most people from work and school and that includes us from classes at the university. In Russia, New Years is THE holiday. So from Jan 1-10 or so, most people have vacation. New Years Eve I got so sick with some awful bug, I was not going anywhere. I had already made food for that night, so Micah and the girls went over to our friends who live nearby. They ate lots of food, some new interesting things like cow tongue, cooked horse meat in different dishes, frozen thinly sliced raw horse meat, and baked thinly sliced horse intestines. When I was finally up to eating two days later, I tried some leftovers Micah had brought home. The cow tongue wasn’t so bad, and I’ve had that other places, they served that to me in the hospital after I had Keith in Moscow. Cooked horse meat tastes good and similar to beef. But, the intestines, for me that was a bad idea. I took one bite and the only thing I can say to describe that taste was to have you think of a farm. Think of the way it smells. That is exactly what it tasted like. I’m not feeling great thinking about it. Ha! I just hope I don’t get that offered to me anytime soon. I’m not sure if my stomach will be able to handle it.
Micah and the girls came home after a couple of hours of being at our friends place, then at midnight we watched the pre-recorded bells toll at the Kremlin on TV. After that, people everywhere here were setting off lots and lots of fireworks. Not just the little measly ones either, but pretty big ones. And when they go off right in front of your apartment windows, they are loud. But the girls loved it.
So now with less than a week left in our “vacation”, we are enjoying some down time as a family and spending time with our newly made friends before we get busy again.
We’ve been having some really beautiful sunrises this last week. Along with very cold weather. As you can see, it was about -31 C (-24 F). One day it was almost -40 C. There’s nothing quite like the sensation of that kind of cold. But soon it will be getting even colder. It is after all only the beginning of November.
Snow. Yes, we had our first snowfall here Thursday morning. It was very light, but it was still snow. It has been quite cold here (0 degrees Celsius) and sometimes windy which makes it even colder. Right now the sun is up and I see some pretty blue sky outside, and we are very thankful for that.
Today we woke up to a nice sunrise and the sun stayed all day like it has been the last couple of days. It’s been so nice to see the sun this many days in a row.
You may be thinking, Oh, so it’s warmed up then? HA. No. This morning it was a brisk -19 degrees Celsius (-2 degrees F). We really don’t mind the cold that much, which is a good thing because wherever we will be ending up in Siberia, it will be a lot colder. Both Micah and I, and the girls it seems, are usually always warm. We always have warm hands, warm feet, and just warm bodies.
There are things we like and dislike about the cold weather such as;
Like: Getting dressed with lots of warm layers and feeling warm while out in the cold.
Dislike: Getting sweaty as soon as you walk into any building with the heat on because of all of the layers you are dressed in.
Like: Seeing all the pretty fur coats and hats people are wearing.
Dislike: Seeing all the frozen spit and animal droppings left on the sidewalks.
Like: Feeling healthy after a nice brisk walk.
Dislike: Not feeling your nose and cheeks after said brisk walk.
Like: When your daughter makes up songs about how cold it is outside that sounds like this:
Its cold , its cold.
Its snowy, its windy.
Its snowy, its windy
Its cold outside…
I am sitting on a sled.
Its so funny.
Its so funny.
Its so funny.
Its so funny.
The sled is funny.
Ha, and the sled is funny.
The sled is over.
Ok, you gotta take a nap right now.
(I was writing this as she was singing while standing on her sled looking at herself in the mirror. If I get up to get the camera to record her she will stop.)
BTW… she has been doing A LOT of that lately. Just singing everything that comes into her head. It is really funny. And it reminds me of the days growing up where my mom and I would do the same thing. We kinda just sang while we talked to each other though. Ha ha, remember that, Mom?
And I’ll leave you with two super cute pictures of the girls. Thanks for the cute outfit, Aunt Elaine!!