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Destinations, Dreams and Dogs - International adventure with a fast-track family (& dogs) of Old World values, adopting the Russian-Italian-American good life on the go…!

Home & Family

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Group Activities for Adopted Children

When newly-adopted, often children long for friends. That’s normal and to be expected. Unfortunately, those arriving from domestic or international situations generally do not know how to read local social situations. The kids can easily be preyed-upon by unsavory elements. In my opinion, this is why placing adopted children into school immediately remains less than…

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The CDC & Avoiding Alcohol During Pregnancy

It’s hardly news to tell women not to drink while pregnant. But the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention raised the bar (no pun intended) on Tuesday when they advised a potential target group of 3.3 million women, aged 15-44, not to drink. These are women who are sexually active and not using birth…

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Monday Mottoes – #126

Dogs who cuddle are right up there with jetting around the world, well-mannered children and chocolate chip cookies. I mean, what could be better? Our Scotties, Misha and Grisha, love to be sandwiched in-between us on the couch as the family watches a movie together. They enjoy being salsicce side-by-side in the car. At night…

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Pizza in Any Form or Any Place

Our kids love pizza. I mean they loooove pizza. There’s probably not a single pizza any of them would dislike. Maybe deep-dish…. Benedetto regals them with talk of potato-and-rosemary-with-olive-oil Roman slices. I try to explain Quattro Stagione’s delights and they all understand how to eat a thin-crust pizza with knife and fork at any self-respecting…

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Notebooks for Every Occasion

It appears that I have an unusual attraction for notebooks. This has existed since childhood and obviously is a sign of genius. I mean, great ideas come to us all and if we don’t write them down, how will we ever remember those flashes of brilliance or that turn of a phrase? Notepads surround me…

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Monday Mottoes – #125

While the blizzard blew up and down the East Coast of the US, we sat with perhaps a tiny shred of guilt with friends by a sunny, beachside restaurant reminiscent of New England, but in appearance only. Sure it was chilly outside, but inside, awash with soothing gray and blue and white decor.  We had…

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Snow Prep for DC/ MD/ VA

Snowmageddon is coming, they say.  A blizzard to the US mid-Atlantic East Coast.  Let’s all pray for safety and commonsense (stay home!) for all involved. Meanwhile, make preparations, if you have not, already. Meaning: bread, milk and toilet paper. If the grocery store shelves are already bare in your area (that started around Tuesday… hopefully…

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The Realities of FAS in Kids… and Adults

The epic snow and winds of Winter Storm Jonas are heading toward the East Coast of the United States, meanwhile the Russian Ruble’s freefall continues past 80 Rubles to the Dollar and oil prices are tanking. Thinking of blizzards and rubles already, as a Russian adoptive parent, the recent Washington Post article on Fetal Alcohol…

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The Architect and the Archaeologist Reconnect

My husband, Benedetto, has a friend from long ago. The two of them knew each other as struggling, young professionals in Israel 40 years earlier. Both arrived as recent college graduates and were seated together one day at the long, laminated tables of the one-of-a-kind, Jerusalem Old City eatery popular among travelers of the time:…

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Monday Mottoes – #124

Here’s a happy thought for a Monday morning: Life is going to knock you down or try to knock you down. The longer you lay there, on the ground, shaking your head in shock, the easier it is for the next guy to come and bulldoze right over you. Get up. Get up and dust…