I can’t believe that our every weekend is planned to the minute. We always are running somewhere, meeting friends, going out. I usually try to do some chores around the house, find at least 30 minutes to exercise and then just sit by the pool and relax.
Last weekend was busy as usual. We went to a barbecue at our friends’ house.
They have a little boy, the same age as Sophia, and because they speak Russian, I like when the kids get together. We are trying to teach Sophia 2 languages, but because almost all her friends speak English, sometimes she refuses to speak Russian.
It is very important for us to teach her to speak Russian, and be able to communicate in two languages, but it is not easy when she hears everyone around her but her parents speaking English, So, Sophia’s friend Alec speaks Russian very well, and he always teaches her some words that she never heard before. On the other side, she teaches him English, and even though he doesn’t have a lot of experience speaking English, he totally understands her. Now, that they are older, it is so much fun to see them communicating and playing together.
Sophia likes to take the leader role ( I have no idea where she got that from), and as a caring little girl she always makes sure Alec is doing well, isn’t hungry or thirsty, is feeling comfortable and is just having fun.
Sometimes I wonder whether it is better if the girls play with the girls, and boys with the boys, but honestly, it does not really matter, they need to have a chance to play with everyone and learn to get along together, share, communicate and make themselves comfortable with the other kids.
The next day we made a trip to the city with our friends. There is a nice, cosy Russian restaurant in Flatiron District called Mari Vanna.
Mari Vanna was opened in August 2009 in NY. Their interior transports you into an old Russian-style home complete with layers of wallpaper that are peeled away in places to show the generations that have past. Pretty crystal chandeliers hang fromthe ceiling, classic Russian literature line the bookshelves filled with Russian classic literature. Elegant antique tableware and silverware make you feel you are dining at a Russian tsar’s table.
I really like their interior and style. It feels very cosy and warm.
Even the kids’ high chairs are hand-painted in Russian-style.
Because we went to the restaurant with our american friends, we wanted to introduce them to the popular Russian dishes. They have Sunday Brunch buffet, which let us show them different kinds of food: traditional Borsh soup, different kinds of salads-vinegret, olivier, country salad; vareniki( traditional Russian dumplings with potato), homestyle fried potato with mushrooms, chicken stroganoff, and for dessert- Russian blinis( crepes) with different kinds of jams and sweetened condensed milk.
Mari Vanna is kid-friendly place, and Sophia loves it a lot. They let the kids run around and dance to the popular Russian cartoon songs, and the stuff always make sure the kids feel comfortable and happy at their restaurant.
The restaurant makes really delicious food and if you are looking for some place in the city to try the Russian food and learn a little about the Russian culture, this is the place to go.