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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…!

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The Monday Mug Club

There’s nothing like a good mug of your favorite beverage as Monday morning dawns.  Here at Destinations, Dreams and Dogs, we’ll be celebrating you and your favorite cup as Mondays take us through the end of summer and on into autumn. Do you have a favorite mug?  What makes it so special?  Did your kids…

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Go For the Greek

Souvlaki, avgolemono, and spanikopeta.  Moussaka, pastitizio, and gyros (“yeh’rohs”).  Second-best to sitting on the sands of a Greek island this summer is savoring the flavor. We were in Place A, headed to Place B, which happens a lot in our family, yet these were not our usual locales.  My husband, also known as The Man…

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Our Fraidy Cat Dogs

Summer is upon us with the usual violent thunderstorms, full of lightning and thunder.  Our Scottish terriers surprise us when the usually brave guy becomes frightened, and the formerly-abused guy takes it all in stride.  Generally, they are exactly the opposite. Both dogs came to us as puppies.  Misha came from a good home, breeders…

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Dust Mite Mania

We are launching a full-scale attack against dust mites in our homes.  A tricky proposition, since the little buggers cannot be seen with the human eye.  Hard to verify whether they’re in your house or not. We imagine we may be infested because:  a) one of our dogs has bad allergies; and b) we are…

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Dads Who Are Up for the Job

Fatherhood is not for the faint, nor for the fearful.  Particularly adoptive parenting calls for manly men who are willing to be sensitive and strict, serious and silly.  It’s not an easy job. There are one thousand important things that a man has to do each day:  work, think about lunch, consider if he’s balding,…

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Do Japan’s Troubles Touch Us?

In light of Japan’s not-so-natural natural disaster, I wonder if it makes us all more thoughtful. Maybe not. I went to the store today, and the girl scouts were out front, hawking their heavenly cookies. Sports fields were packed with teams giving their all. Cities are holding St. Patrick’s Day celebrations. It’s hard to just…

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A Modern International Family

Workaholics for many years, our Russian (me) Italian (him) American (us) union remained childfree by choice.  A heavy travel schedule made it difficult to imagine any other life.  But after 9/11, we started contemplating kids and dogs, and when we took the plunge, let’s just say we didn’t play around:  four older kids from Russia…

Medical Miracle

Five years ago this week, things were very bleak. It was an icy, chilly, winter day when someone very close received a distressing diagnosis from the doctors. Very little hope. The professionals spoke of survival stats and the extreme medical intervention that would be necessary. And then:  God! Within three days’ time, everything bad disappeared….

Social Graces for Adopted Children

Ah, the wonderful subject of politeness and manners for the next generation, a topic which has all been kicked to the curb in recent years. We’ll leave that for another day, and instead, focus on getting our kids through basic introductions. “Hello, how are you?” Some get it and some don’t.We practice again and again….

Domesticated and Drab Me

Does life change after motherhood? Yes. Will I seek to reverse this trend in the coming year? Yes. You see, I have lost myself somewhere along this journey and it’s time to reclaim the “real me”, whomever that may be nowadays. It all came to me as clear as day in the early dawn hours…