Wednesday, May 9, 2012


My host brother and his wife just had their first baby!  Her name is Julietta, my host family could not be more excited to have a baby in their house.  I have learned that it is thought to be bad luck to take pictures of a baby in the first 40days, after those 40 days they have a big BBQ to present the baby to their friends.  So I dont have any pictures yet but she is adorable! Yerazik (the mother) asked me to make this blanket that she saw online and a hat to match it.

Levon and Yerazik- the proud new parents

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

International Art Exchange

Here in Sisian we have an  Art School with an attached art gallery. There they teach everything from drawing to rug making.  There are some pretty impressive Artists that teach and attend the Sisisan Art school.  I had them paint pictures of Armenia and their life to send to Washington DC. Some time in May we should get 25 new pieces of art from all around the world to display in the gallery.

Lilit with her painting of Noah's Ark on top of Mt. Ararat  (which is currently in  Turkey) 

Grandmothers making Lavash 

Kids throwing water at eachother on the water holiday Vrat Na Var

Monday, February 27, 2012

Not so new apartment.

Sorry I have been awful at updating this but I promise I work harder to keep posting things.  So in November right around Thanksgiving I moved out of my host family's house and into a little one room apartment that has now become home.

This is my little bathroom, that has a shower!

The living room/ Bedroom

My kitchen, there is a little balcony off to the right.

Sunday, October 30, 2011


Fall in Sisian is all about harvesting things, we have dug up all the potatoes and carrots, we have collected the walnuts and the plums and now it is apple season.  We have so many apple trees in my host family’s yard I have no idea what they will do with all of them.  I taught them how to make apple sauce and apple cobbler both of whichwere a big hit.  I just got my house approved and i get to move in on the first of the month, I'll be sure to post some pictures, bright pink paint seems to have been on sale here because there some of the rooms are pepto bismol pink!

Thursday, September 8, 2011


I have decided that I should dedicate an entire blog entry to food, because since the opening of quail season my diet has taken a pretty huge change.  In my first village mostly we ate hot dogs potatoes and eggs.  Now we are eating exclusively  quail and rabbit, we raise our own rabbits and we have two babies at the moment. The quail on the other hand are hunted by my host father and his friends.  Every night he brings 20 to 60 home and we spend the night cleaning them.  I am now a pro at de-feathering small birds, which is a lot of work for such a small amount of meat. 

My host father Suren toasting the quail over our stove.
My host mother and sisters plucking quail, a usual night in our house

This time of year is when everyone is preparing for winter, which of course includes making vodka .   The “home made” that we make is actually moonshine because it is not grain based, and it is crazy strong.  My family is making plum homemade, so we start by beating the plum tree with a base ball bat while the rest of the family holds an old blanket to catch the fruit.  Then we collect all the plums from the ground and store them in buckets for a few days.  Next is my favorite part, my sister washed a huge pair of black boots and we did a plum stomp, like when the Italians stomp on their grapes in preparation for wine. It was a slimy mess and it was a blast!  I am not sure what the next step is but I really hope that cooking is in there somewhere because I stomped a lot of dirt and bugs in with the plums.

Stompin plums, and making a HUGE mess :)

Friday, August 19, 2011


I am officially a Volunteer now I have been sworn in and everything, If you want to watch the ceremony here is the link.
I was also interviewed by the Armenian TV channel about why I wanted to come to Armenia and what I am doing here, so now I have heard from several Armenian's that they saw me on TV.

I am all moved in with my new family in Sisian, I have only been here two days but I love it here! This is the view from my new house:

My family has a bed and breakfast so they created this website about Sisian and the the sights to see in the area, I have not been to many of these sights yet but I am very excited to check them all out. 

Monday, August 1, 2011


My computer has been out of commission for several weeks because I managed to leave half of my power chord in Yerevan at a hotel we had a conference in.  Only in Armenia can you leave something like that and have it returned to you several weeks later! One of the drivers went to the hotel and got it for me!  So in those three week a lot has happened, most importantly I got my permanent placement in Syunik Marz. I will be working at a secondary school and the local high school with 5 different teachers.
I went to visit my new town about two weeks ago and got to stay with my new host family.  Their youngest son was just married the day before I arrived so I was able to meet the entire family in the three days I was there. They are a great family, the mother is a Russian Teacher at the Secondary school I will working with, and the Father is a doctor.  There youngest son and his new wife are also living in the house.  In Armenia the youngest son and his wife live in his parents house which will then become theirs and so on and so forth.  They took me to see the Armenian stone henge and one of the world’s oldest churches. 
My new host mother and sister walking around Stone Henge.
The weather is much cooler in my new town due to its elevation. I am counting down the days until I can go back and enjoy that cool weather.  Here in Kotyak it getting hotter and hotter!  Today we tried to use Hannah’s thermometer to find out how hot it was but it read over 125 degrees F, I’m pretty sure that it isn’t that hot but it is defiantly in the hundreds.  

Some of my new family