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27

In less than a month, I will be celebrating my 27th birthday.

For some reasons I remember very well the 27th birthday of a friend of mine, 4 or 5 years ago. This birthday has been haunting me the past weeks. It was the time I was studying in Prague (if you want to learn more about it click here but the articles are all in French). My friend gathered his closest friends in a Czech brewery in the old town. It was always quite a touristic place, but we still liked to go there for beers from time to time. The important thing was to avoid taking the pretzels in the middle of each table, who gave you the impression they were for free, but turn out to be quite pricy (impossible to read the bottom of the menu after a few beers!).

It is funny, because I precisely remember this birthday party, I even remember that I was eating chicken wings. We were eating and drinking, and he decided to say a little speech to thank us for joining. He closed his speech saying “I am 27 years old, feel comfortable about my age and with my achievements. I would never want to go back, I just want to enjoy my 27.”

After the speech I asked myself: “will I be able to say the same at my next birthdays? How about when I turn 27?”

This speech and questions have been following me ever since. It is usually the first thing I think about on the day of my birthday: do I feel happy about my life as it is right now? Am I ready to welcome this new year, new age?

Now that I am getting closer to my 27th, this speech haunts me even more. Will I be able to say the same thing (sorry for spoiling my birthday speech for the once who will be there)? What can I still change in my life to be able to be happy about turning 27 and not regret the past? I am almost scared of not beeing mentaly ready to celebrate my birthday.

This fear irritates me. I want to feel good so badly, that I keep pressuring myself. By pressuring myself I feel stressed, so I am in fact NOT feeling so well at the end. I hear the clock ticking and see the day pass by. Though it would actually be waaay better, to just relax, let life happen and be happy about this new oportunity to party with people I like.

Top 3 of the best Christmas movies

Only a few days left until Christmas guys! And for me a successful Christmas time means a lot of lying on the couch watching some Christmas movies and TV shows. A tradition that I am very attached to since I am a child. A few years ago I created a big Christmas Spotify playlist here (french version only but you can click on the links). Believe it or not, I have been working on this article ever since, watching every Christmas new seasonal movies. This year I am finally ready to revel to you my Top 3 Christmas movies:

A Christmas Story (1983)

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A Christmas Story is the story of the perfect anti-hollywood family and it tells the anti-Christmas-carol kind of story. It’s the story of Ralphie and his weird family who is getting ready for Christmas.  It is the storw of Ralphie who wants a riffle for Christmas, of his dad who wins an erotic lamp at the lottery, of his brother who does not eat anything and of his classmates that are doing silly things. It is fun and totally unusual for a Christmas movie. I would totally recommand you to watch it; with friends or family, your choice.

Elf (2003)

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The movie Elf is great. Elf is about an orphan who is raised by elves in the North Pole. While growing up he becomes too big for staying there and decides to go look for his father in NYC. It is the story of how he tries to adapt. The movie is cute, naive, romantic, a little bit sad, funny, it is the perfect Christmas movie! Also it has cool music and Zooey Deschanel in it.

It’s a Wonderful Life (1948)

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It has been a while since I first heard about that movie but I saw it only a few weeks ago. Reason for that is that it is in black and white and quite long which stopped me. But I was so wrong… This movie is awesome. It takes you through every emotions and speaks pragmatically about the magic of Christmas. The movie is about George, whose life changes dramatically one night before Christmas. An angel will look through his exemplary life and will help him regain faith in himself. The movie has a perfectly beautiful ending (a bit girly romantic though, old movie kind of ending).  Perfect to watch with your loved one!

And you, do you have any favs?

Russian Receipe n°3 – Borscht

Let’s stay on the russian topic while I restart an old topic of this blogs : the russian receipes (my dear english readers here are the links to the receipes, but unfortunatelly only in french 12). My last visit to Moscow was a little bit frustrating. It was so short that I couldn’t eat all my favorit meals. Amongst those: Borscht. The Borscht is a ukrainian soup but wich is very popular in Russia. It is a soup made out of beetroot with a very specific colour. This soup is perfect to eat plenty vitamins during the long cold winter. I had to modify the initial receipe a little bit by making it without meat, as it is quicker and I prefer it like this, but no worries I wrote down both possibilities.

First, I went shopping (partially at a local market), and I bought this:

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As you can see I used for this a old parchment receipe book.

Here is what you have to buy for borscht for approx 6/8 plates. Please note that for a smaller soup you can use the half of the ingredients.

- 1/2 cabbage

- 2 beet

- 2 onions

- 2 middle sizedcarrots

- 5 potatoes

- 2 garlic cloves

- 3 tablespoons of Ketchup

- 1 laurel leaf (not mandatory)

- vegetable brooth

- dill

- parsley

- sour cream

- salt pepper (not needed if the brooth if already spiced)

For the ones who want to cook the original receipe with meat, here is what you have to do: buy a piece of beef for brooth or a bone  and start the receipe by making the beef brooth. Before putting the vegetables in the brooth, you have to take the bone/meat out of the water. You can put the meat afterwards in the soup again cutted in small squares.

Begin by peeling the vegetables :

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Meanwhile, you can also put the brooth for preparation. I, just bought some organic vegetable brooth that I have put in approximately 1,5l water and started to heat it up (if you put more water it is not a big deal).

Then you cut the potatoes and the half cabbage. You have to cut everything in very little kind of squares. Common guys make an effort I said in VERY little squares. The tiniest squares you can. Cutting the vegetables small will give more taste to the soup, it helps all the different tastes to mix perfectly and feels nicer when you eat it.

You put the cabbage and the potatoes in the brooth.

Afterwards, cut in thin slivers  the carrots, in tiny squares the onion and grate (yay) the beets.

Take a frying pan, add a little bit of olive oil and put the carrots and the onion to fry. When the onion seems ready add the beet. Mix everything, cover up, and let it stew slowly.

While waiting for your mix to be ready, cut the garlic small and a bit of parsley and dill.

When your vegetables in the frying pan are cooked put them into the brooth and add the parsley, laurel, garlic, dill and ketchup (3 tbs) RIGHT AWAY.

Let it cook together for 5 minutes (my dear meat lover reader, add your meat you used for the brooth now). Then turn off the heat, cover the pan and let it rest for 10 minutes. When opening the top it will look like this:

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eat it with fresh parsley and dill, add a teaspoon of sour cream in it, to refresh the soup a little bit (for a vegan version, don’t).

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Enjoy your borscht and leave me a comment if you try it out!

(Note: It was my first time translating a receipe in english, a little bit challenging, hope everything is understandable :D)

Fall in Moscow

My favorite season to visit Russia is definitely spring. Begining of june is just the perfect time! Days are loooong and the flowers are growing, Saint-Petersburg and Moscow are really impressive this time of the year.

This year, I had the chance to see Moscow under a new light : Moscow in autumn/fall (as you prefer).

I often hear that Moscow in fall was the worst: the weather was something between unending rain or wet snow and the streets get dirty. But by chance, I discovered a completely different Moscow during this short stay. The sky was blue and the sun was shining. But the sun is very low the whole day, so you have an impression of a beeing in the golden hour the whole day. The city had the most impressive colours so waaarm and pretty. The colours were warm but not the weather of course.

 Moscow Region

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Funny me after a walk in the cold

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Moscow

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