Friday is the New Thursday and Learning Farsi

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I seem to be very challenged on Thursdays and even though I promised myself (with my will of iron) that I would post every Tuesday and Thursday I am seeing that it is impossible. Thursdays are too full! I’m thinking that the only solution is to make Friday the new Thursday and I will post on Tuesdays and Fridays.

I’m not loving the symmetry of that so maybe I’ll switch to Monday, Wednesday, Friday, but yikes that’s a lot of commitment. I miss the days when I posted everyday. Life was so simple then… sigh.

Hah! Life wasn’t simple at all then. I don’t know why I had so much more time in my twenties and thirties than I do now. Less kids? Maybe.

So anyway, speaking of challenges I have decided to pay for Farsi lessons this summer. It’s not that I’ve always wanted to learn Farsi or that I’ll find it useful in business or anything it’s just that I am surrounded by Farsi-speakers and Bug’s math tutor offers Farsi lessons.

When summer came and Bug desperately wanted a summer off from all things school-related I decided to keep her math tutor on (because I love her so much) and pay her to teach me Farsi instead. It has been fun. On weeks that I study I make massive progress and I am the best student ever. On weeks that I forget to study it is like being in kindergarten all over again and learning that these funny squiggles are actually letters.

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I was really scared that I wouldn’t be able to learn, you know, being old and set in my ways and having a memory that is shit. It is definitely a lot easier for the kids to pick it up. And there are sounds and letters that I find impossible to say. They seriously sound like hacking up saliva to me but it’s actually a LETTER! These sounds roll off the kids’ tongues easily but when I try, it sounds like I have a hairball. Khagh! Ghagh! Cough! Kghlaagah!

But I am loving it. It is sort of like cracking a code. I have these sets of squiggles and lines that I can actually sound out and make words with. I can write from right to left! I’m still very slow and only six or seven letters into the alphabet but I am making sentences with words with those seven letters.

I’m really glad I decided to do this. We might not be traveling this summer (big bummer) but learning a new skill is the next best thing and having someone who is really patient and kinds teach it to you makes it a pleasure instead of a terrible learning curve that makes you want to cry and tear your hair out. (Wow that’s a really long sentence.)

I’m having so much fun with Farsi that I’m thinking of making Farsi-finglish flashcards. I’d love to make real Farsi flashcards with the words in Persian characters but I haven’t figured out how to do that on my computer yet (Do I load a special font? How do I know which letters to type on my keyboard? I know phones can do this but does it work the same way on my computer with my Adobe programs?)  Maybe I’ll use google translate and trace the characters in Adobe Illustrator. That seems like a lot of work though and the fonts are hard to read… Maybe some Farsi speaker out there has an Arabic keyboard and would like to collaborate?

In the mean time: Baba ob dad. Dara nan dad. Man toot doost daram! Abr Bood. (Lol)

Persian BBQ and Yogurt with Swords!

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I seriously had to ask Payam whether my readers (all 300 of you! Woot! Up from 200!) would rather hear about my bathroom redeaux (aka organizing the tweenagers crap with an Ikea hack) OR Persian Barbecue.  Of course he said barbecue because he thinks talking about house porn on the internet is boring. (Even though he’s just as addicted to HGtv as I am.) Maybe bathroom re-organizing is boring. I don’t think so. I think it’s the best thing EVER. I’m sure I’ll be back here with that another day.

Barbecue it is!

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I’ve been super spoiled two days in a row because we broke out the barbecue like it’s summer or something. Last night was Persian BBQ and the night before was frozen grocery store hamburgers. Don’t knock ’em. It meant NO cooking for me! I know, I should have made some kind of potato salad or maybe squeezed some balsamic-glazed bockchoy in on the barbecue… but phooey! I was not paying attention at all because I was off doing my own thing on my computer which is COMING UP WITH AN ART CAMP THIS SUMMER! (Yes, I totally am. Stay tuned.)

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The dogs were quite interested in this new development. “I CAN HAZ SOME, DAD?”

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Inconveniently, we ran out of dog food so I did actually do some cooking for the dogs. I threw some chicken in the instant pot and made a pot of sticky rice and they thought it was THANKSGIVING DINNER! Most spoiled dogs ever.

I do love our little patio. Everything is blooming right now and what used to look like a dilapidated abandoned puzzle of pots is now looking like a lush garden. Well, minus the grass and maybe a few hundred more plants. I can dream. Sometimes I miss having a real backyard but then I get my water bill and I think pavers are fine.

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After Payam had de-skewered the grilled chicken and steak he made a pot of Persian Tadique rice. If you know it, you love it. It has this crust on the top that is crunchy and buttery and pretty much as addictive as chips. Everyone loves it except Bug which is fine with everyone.

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Then we all sat down for dinner. (Note that we had paper plates. Mama was taking the night off! Oh yeah.) And this is what happened when I asked them to pose for me.

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Payam is pretty much thinking, Can we get on with this already? I’m starving. He’s a very good “instagram husband.”

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And then we dug in!

I love to put yogurt and Salad Shirazi on top of my rice which is sort of a faux pas to real Persians but they look the other way and let me do my gringo thing. Salad Shirazei is actually “Salad from the province of Shirazei” which is a place but it’s basically chopped up cucumbers, onions, cilantro, tomatoes with lemon and oil or vinegar. It’s delicious. Like salsa but not.

A funny story that we constantly remind Joon of: Yogurt is called mast. So if you have yogurt with cucumbers it’s called mast o khiyar but Joon, being a little girl with few words, once called it “mast o sham sheer” which translates to “yogurt with swords.” We all think that’s a way better name for it so that is what we call it to this day! MAST O SHAM SHEER FOREVER!

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