Hodgepodge and, Yes, Food.

November 19, 2007

Holiday season is in full swing for us Westerners so all of the below tidbits could have been regular posts if I had the time. Something is better than nothing, no?

  • Skype or Vonage? Which one is better for talking to family back home? And by better I really mean cheap (free, if possible) and good connections.
  • The Olay Regenerist line is wonderful. Why pay for expensive creams that don’t work as well?
  • I made gyros the other night for dinner. They were scrumptious. They’re on my Comfort/Soul Food list. Want to make them? Leave a comment and I’ll post the recipe.
  • The only time we eat turkey around here is when it’s sliced from the deli. This Thanksgiving I’ll go traditional but instead of a turkey, I’ll be roasting a chicken. I might even cheat and get a rotisserie chicken from Sultan Center already made. Heh. P.S. I’ve never cooked a whole turkey. Ground turkey, yes. Whole turkey, no.
  • Bombay in Al Jial Mall is no longer there. Bummer. Is it me or is their ridiculously overpriced furniture made of MDF? Love some of their wall art and sconces.
  • How can Marks & Spencer expand their store and offer less products? I didn’t see any toys or books for children. For the first time in years, I didn’t buy their charity Christmas cards. I just couldn’t do it. They did nothing for me.
  • I finally broke down and hired a housekeeper. My father is already taking bets and he’s betting on her lasting eight weeks. I’m sure he told me this so that I could prove him wrong. Right, Dad? (Knowing my father, he really IS starting a pool at the office, taking bets from all of his employees. “10 to 1 on her lasting 8 weeks! Who’s in?”)
  • My husband went to Italy a few weeks ago and I stayed here. LIFE IS SO NOT FAIR!! He did, however, bring me back all of my favorite magazines. And some olive oil, balsamic vinegar, vanilla beans, grissini, purses – but my favorite things were the magazines. I’m so easy to please.
  • All of my favorite shows started back up in late September/early October but I haven’t been able to watch a single episode in its entirety. One of them comes on when it’s time to pick my son up from school and prepare lunch, the other comes on when it’s time to make dinner. I’m enjoying what little I see of them, though.
  • I have two stray cats that I feed which is pissing my husband off to high heaven. I promised to call PAWS but he thinks they won’t make the trip for cats. Golden retriever yes, stray cats, no. We’ll see.


  • When a Lebanese friend invites you over for lunch, the appropriate term would be “feast”. My mother would have been in heaven. She LOVES Arab food, unlike my American friends’ mothers who come here and whine about how the food is gross. Give my mama good stuffed grapes leaves, kushari, shish tawook, fattoush, tabbouleh, kubbah and she’s good to go. (Don’t forget the Lebanese baklava.) And yes, by the way, she makes most of the above but her hummous is more Greek-style: less tahini and not as smooth as you get it over here. She also used to make Lamajhan which is called Arayes over here. I can remember her making stuffed grape leaves when I was younger but I’d never touch them. Silly me!


  1. That’s like two months worth of blog topics, Stinni! I love the idea of roast chicken for the turkey on Thanksgiving. I love having leftover turkey, but always dread the taking-apart-the-turkey mess, especially when I have cleaned and cooked and cleaned again and am so so tired. Roast chicken . . . easy!

  2. You have never cooked a whole turkey?! I am so surprised to hear that! But, if you’ve cooked a whole chicken- a turkey isn’t much different. 🙂
    I would love a recipe for gyros. My man (who is Lebanese-didn’t know if you knew that?) always bitches about not being able to get good ‘real’ gyros around here.

    Oh- and about the phone. I got rid of my home phone and got Vonage, and it is the best. It’s very clear, and although it’s not free, it’s very reasonably priced. It’s worth checking into.

  3. The stakes are high, count me in and it sounds I’ll end up with a fortune.

  4. skype is awesome, we have a great connection and the only thing that ever seems to hamper is the local internet connection.

    gyro recipe please. I love them.

  5. Enjoy your Thanksgiving!!! Give everyone a big kiss for me.

    I made whipped sweet potatoes and banana’s with honey for my work Thanksgiving potluck, and it was such a hit that I am making it for Thanksgiving!


    Love Kerrie – I MISS YOU!!!!

  6. intlxpatr – I ended up doing something much easier than a roast chicken. 🙂

    Angela – Must be getting really pretty up your way these days. I’ll post the gyro recipe this week, although it’s not like the restaurant type exactly.. My parents use Vonage to call me and it’s good for the most part but at times we get cut off and there’s lag but I think it’s all on my side.

    Touche – Huh?

    Becca – I’m so glad you’re blogging again. I downloaded Skype and will check it out soon. Gyro recipe on the way.

    Kerrie – I miss you too. Sweet potatoes – mmmmm. Wish you were here…or that I was there.

  7. Stinni, the leaves are all gone and we actually got a light dusting of snow the day before Thanksgiving. It was really pretty, but didn’t last. That’s the type of snow I love. 🙂
    I’ll be sure to check back for your recipe-

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