I wanted to wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and to share a few Christmas scenes from my house, taken today.
It’s been an interesting year, hasn’t it? A lot of good things happened! After all, the world’s still around, in spite of the silly predictions. And as this Christmas draws near, it’s time to celebrate the good and the wonderful in our lives with those we love.
From Ligia and I to you, a very Merry Christmas!
Merry Christmas! We’re spending a quiet Christmas day at home, relaxing with old movies and old cartoons…
Here’s a quiet little video of our grey kitten, Tira.
We adopted her along with her brother, Bubu. Tira’s a lovely cat. She loves being around us. Wherever we go or sit in the house, we have to be careful, because Tira will inevitably fall asleep somewhere near our feet. She loves attention and once you begin to pet her, she’ll cling to you like sticky tape, asking for more. You can’t see it in this video, but she’s a fairly small kitten. Her brother’s huge, but she’s short and soft and very, very cuddly.
This the 22nd episode of Ligia’s Kitchen, and let me just say this first: yum! 🙂
This Christmas, make super-tasty raw chocolate brownies with juicy, honey-dipped orange peels, glazed with thick, creamy chocolate syrup! It’s a decadent holiday dessert that’s perfect for Christmas or New Year’s!
The video is exactly 3 minutes long because we were challenged to edit a full recipe (that would normally take 7-10 minutes) to that length by Chow.com. It was a challenge issued to the YouTube Next Chef winners. We met the challenge dead on and walked away unscathed, albeit a bit dazed! 🙂 While the video fits within the 3-minute space, it would do much better as a 4-5 minute video.
Here’s the recipe!
- 2 cups raw cocoa powder
- 2 cups water
- 3 tbsp cocoa butter
- 4 tbsp honey
- 1 tsp mesquite
- 4 cups flour from sunflower seeds
- 1/2 cup chocolate syrup
- 1 cup orange peels, diced and dipped in honey
- coconut flakes
- almond slivers
- golden raisins
- anise stars
- chocolate glaze
Enjoy and thanks for watching!
In Eastern Europe, where I am right now, it’s already evening (7:10 pm as I write this). Back in the US, it’s barely noon, and people are still getting ready for Christmas Eve. In other parts of the world, families have already gone to sleep, and the children can’t wait to get their presents in the morning.
It’s been an interesting and eventful year for us. And as it winds down, we have a lot to be thankful for. I hope you do, too. And I also hope you find just what you need under your Christmas tree. As someone once said, we may not always get what we want, but we get what we need.
Merry Christmas, everyone!
This is a video montage of our 2007 Christmas tree and ornaments. It sat in my “to-do” queue for over three years… but it’s finally edited!
The quality of my filming back then wasn’t quite up to snuff, but I tried to sweeten things up in editing — let me know how it came out.
Here are photos of some of the ornaments you saw in the video.
These are photos I’ve taken in the province of Transilvania, during the past several days, after a beautiful early winter snowfall blanketed most of Romania.
Yesterday, the Seventh-day Adventist Church of Medias gave a charity Christmas concert at Sala Traube. The entry was free, but a call for donations was made halfway through the concert. All proceeds went to U.A.M.S. (Unitatea de Asistenta Medico-Sociala), a charitable institution run by City Hall, which provides medical and living assistance to the poor and the needy.
A large, 54-person choir, in which my wife participated, sang Christmas carols accompanied by piano and violin. The repertoire was as follows:
- O, ce veste minunata
- Crestini din toata zarea
- Noaptea de vis
- Spre Betleem treceau pastori
- O, Betleem din tinutul Iuda
- Intr-o iesle colo jos
- Dinspre stele
- Niste soapte
- Pentru noi veni
- O, Betleem
- Musical Bells
- Azi avem Mantuitor
- S-a nascut azi Domnul Sfant
- Cantati-I popoarelor
- Tatal nostru
I am happy to announce that over 200 people were in attendance, and over 5,000 RON were raised for UAMS. (That’s about $1,700 USD at the current exchange rate.) That’s a really good sum considering it was raised in a small city, and in Romania.
There was a nice little Christmas program at our church this past Saturday, December 19, 2009, and you can watch a video of the three groups which sang in it below. My wife planned the program, in-between planning her own art show, directing our church’s choir, and taking part in two separate choirs that each gave Christmas concerts this past week. Can you tell she’s had a busy agenda lately?
A children’s choir sang first, followed by the church choir. Then she read a short story, which she wrote the night before, and handed out Christmas sweets, prepared from her own recipe following raw food methods, with the aid of a friend. After that, it was a mix of carols from the church choir and a women’s group, plus a musical bells group (which I didn’t record, but which you can watch in action here).
You can also see me singing in the video, as part of the church choir. Given how different the photo on my about page is from the way I look now, I wonder how many people can spot me. Should be fun to know that.