10 Things I’ve Learned About Boston

I moved to Boston from Michigan this past August.  I am a natural homebody and so I was worried about how I would adjust to this change.  I am pleased to announce that things have been going quite well!  The architecture is beautiful and there is a large pond right near my apartment to go running around. During the last 6 months here, I have had the opportunity to learn quite a bit about the city of Bahston, the East Coast and living in a city in general.  10 things I didn’t know before I moved:

  1. If you go to the movies in Boston, and ask what kind of pop they have.  Most likely the guy behind the counter will look at you as if you were crazy and hesitantly point at the popcorn.  They word they are looking for is soda.
  2. Speaking of movies-want to see a movie in downtown Boston? Great idea…however, be sure to get there on time.  And by on time, I mean approximately an hour before the movie starts.  Otherwise, there might not be any tickets left or all of the seats will be filled and you will be forced to sit on those seats at the front of the theatre.  Those seats that make movie watching an incredibly painful and uncomfortable experience.
  3. The drinking fountain is called a Bubbler.
  4. Aunts are called AHHNTS.
  5. Roundabouts are called Rotaries.
  6. The subway is called the T and the passes are called CharlieCards.  I am not sure why, but I like it.
  7. The horn on a car is no longer used as a device to warn others.  It is more like a stress ball-when one is angry and frustrated in traffic, they simply use the horn to let others know so.
  8. Do not be surprised if the street you are driving on suddenly changes names or if you can’t find a stop sign for it.  These streets are meant to test your wits and willpower.  How long will you continue going even if you have absolutely no idea where you are?
  9. The New England Aquarium is really excellent, however, once you go through it, there is no point in paying for it again.  One of the best attractions, the seals and sea lions, are right outside in plain view to visit whenever you like! (Definitely go in at least once though, penguins and turtles oh my!)
  10. After a blizzard or large snowstorm, it is considered commonplace to dig out your car then place a household item such as a chair or recycling bin in order to save it.
Penguins at the New England Aquarium

Penguins at the New England Aquarium

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Spring is Coming…I hope

Happy Daylight Savings!  I can’t believe how rejuvenating it is to have it stay light outside later into the evening.  Though there is still snow on the ground here in Boston, seeing the sunlight stream in at 6 p.m. this evening made me crave one of my favorite warm weather treats: iced coffee (or iced chai).  In fact, last week on a particularly warm day I stopped at Starbucks and picked up an iced caramel macchiato for me and a plain iced coffee for Michael because I was in such a spring-y mood.  When I arrived home, I discovered that he too, had been in that mood and had shaved off his beard!

 

For some reason, the time change has really hit me hard this year.  In general I try, try, try to wake up around 5 a.m. and exercise before work in the morning.  I love doing this.  Perhaps I do not love it at 5 when my alarm goes off, but it puts me in such a good mood for school all day and I feel so productive.  However, this morning, I just couldn’t do it.  What do you know?  I felt bad at school today.  This means that tomorrow for sure I will be getting up.

My whole life I have been really affected by daylight and time.  I seem to notice when it gets light in the morning or dark in the evening more than others and my mood can be dependent on it.  I remember driving into the city of Boston last March with Michael and since it is further east than Michigan I could not stop marveling at how early it was light there.  He was not quite as amazed.  Happy Monday and enjoy the light!

Michael with beard after Blizzard Nemo of 2013.  It is all gone now!

Michael with beard after Blizzard Nemo of 2013. It is all gone now!

Flax On, Flax Off…

When we are young, we cannot even begin to imagine what the world has in store for us.  God leads us on paths way different than what we could’ve ever expected.  Growing up, I never thought I would be marrying someone who is studying to become a Greek Orthodox Priest, but look at me now!  Another thing happened to me today, that I never thought would happen. I bought Flaxseed Meal from Whole Foods.  Then I used it.  Two years ago, I had no idea what flaxseed was (except that it was often referred to on Gilmore Girls as being a staple in the Kim household).  Actually, let’s be honest, until about two weeks ago I didn’t really know what flaxseed was.  So how did a girl like me end up buying a product like that in a store like Whole Foods?

It all began when I started experimenting with those Two Ingredient Cookies.  I loved the idea of having healthy cookies that I could eat many of (as I’ve said, I really need to work on portion control).  After making them once, Michael suggested using flaxseed in them.  I didn’t hate the idea, I just had no idea where to go to buy it.  While in the regular grocery store one day I looked around and ended up buying a granola mix that contained flaxseed.  The mix was delicious but not exactly what I was looking for.  I continued to make the cookies without flaxseed until today.  While in Whole Foods picking up some  frozen Amy’s Burritos (which are really healthy, tasty and quick to make in the microwave when you are in a rush), I saw flaxseed and flaxseed meal.  Not really knowing what the difference was, I took a leap of faith and purchased the meal.

I then made the Two Ingredient Cookies (which now have more than two ingredients) with: 2 bananas, one cup of Fiber One Original cereal, one cup of Flaxseed meal, two spoonfuls of crunchy peanut butter and a sprinkling of cinnamon.  The flaxseed makes the cookies look very unappetizing but they taste good.  The key is to not expect it to taste like an ooey gooey delicious cookie but to accept it for what it is and really appreciate the crunch of the cereal and the banana flavor.  In fact, I packed away a few to take to school tomorrow for breakfast! (I also added some chocolate chips to a few and those are a nice touch).

Lifestyles of the Rich and the Famous

Tonight Michael and I went and saw the movie, Oz the Great and Powerful.  It was a pretty exciting event since my best friend, Hollis, was in it as a munchkin.  We saw her face.  More than once.  It was great.  In fact, I spent the first half of the movie frustrated with the plot because it did not yet involve the munchkins.  I am a little concerned that as she becomes more and more famous, I will no longer be able to concentrate on plot lines at all and only be able to annoy the others in the audience by pointing her out and going “there she is!”

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All in all, it was a good evening.  Michael and I started by having dinner at the Village Smokehouse in Brookline where he rejoiced at the amount of food he got (sausage, baked beans, sweet potato fries, corn bread and vegetables) and I was proud of myself for ordering the appetizer portion of ribs instead of the whole size.  I understand the logic of portion control, but I often have a hard time following it.  I have the capability to eat large amounts of food and so I usually do.  However, that often leaves me with a stomachache and a strong desire to lay down and “slug*.”  This is not a healthy or satisfying way to live life and so one of my struggles has been working on not letting myself get to this point.

*Slugging is a term that Michael and I made up in Greece in 2011 when we would eat so much that we couldn’t do anything besides lay down.