Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Blend Well

Part of being an Evil Stepmonster is blending in with your new family.  This can take years and years and years before you feel like you're not an outsider anymore.

Does anyone remember the movie the Outsiders? Awesome flick!  And wow!  How hot were those boys? Seriously!  C. Thomas Howell, Ralph Macchio, Matt Dillon, Rob Lowe, Emelio Estevez, Tom Cruise and Patrick Swayze may he rest in peace.  If you haven't seen it, you must.  Rent it.  Now.  Go on.  I'll wait.

Some families never manage to blend together into one cohesive group.  The key here is patience, consistency, and being open to a new and different way of living.  There is no right way.  There is no wrong way.  You just have to keep at it.

10 years ago when I came into this already-made family, there was one little piece of family history that came to light pretty quickly.  Both of my two girls, are 1/4 Armenian.  Now, if you've never heard of Armenia, don't fear.  I hadn't heard of it either.  I was never too fond of geography or history, so I didn't beat myself up too much about this lack in my education and neither should you.  For those of you who know all about Armenia, and it's history, please feel free to get a snack, have a drink, whip up some brownies.  For the rest of us, let me give you a quick tutorial.  Just the facts ma'am.

Armenia is nestled between Turkey, Iran, Georgia and Azerbajian in the Middle East.  See on the map up there how nestled it is?  It looks comfy right? Wrong.  It has a pretty intense history which I'll hit on in later posts.  What's important here is that it's a Middle Eastern country.  And the girls' Grandmother is full Armenian from Armenia (meaning that her parents immigrated here directly from Armenia instead of say an Iranian Armenian who immigrated first to Iran before immigrating to America).  There are some subtle differences between the groups, but I really have no idea what they are.  I just know they're different.  See, I'm clueless even as I'm typing this up to keep you informed!

The girls' Grandfather was from the Midwest making the girls' Mom half Armenian.  And since their Dad, The Hubs, is Californian, that makes them 1/4 Armenian.  Geez.. I was told there would be no math, so I hope you guys got all of that!

What do you know? I hear you asking.  Don't think I don't.  You guys are so impatient!

What I do know is I've been slowly introduced to this culture through my children, their Mom and their Grandmother, but mostly through Armenian food.  It's got its own flavor and unique tastes from other Middle Eastern countries.  And lets face it, food brings people together.  And in a blended family, togetherness, is likely the only way this is all going to work.

With the help of the girls' Grandmother, I thought in some upcoming posts, I'd help you learn about the culture the same way I did, through your stomach.

From Rice Pilaf

and Stuffed Grape Leaves

And Hummus

To Armenian Pizza and so much more.

You might get some great new recipes.  You might learn some history and geography.  Or not.  Some of the food might make your stomach tilt a little to the left and leave you feeling woosy (one or two have that effect on me).  But in an effort to explore all aspects of the cooking culture, I won't leave anything out.  And maybe you'll discover you have a few little Armenian taste buds hiding inside you that you never knew about!

Seriously.. Thoughts?

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