Undiscovered Minneapolis: Lyndale Park Rose Garden

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This is a post of major FAILS!

Sam and I celebrated our 2 year anniversary this week! And since he had the whole week off, and I always have Mondays off, we decided to celebrate our anniversary August, 12! Our original plan was to go to Excelsior and spend the whole day on Lake Minnetonka. But then I decided I wanted to go to Minnehaha falls,  which later turned into – I want to go to Lake Harriet… Having lived in Minneapolis for a little over 2 years I have to admit, I’ve never REALLY been to Harriet. I’ve seen it, I’ve driven by it, but never walked around it! Now don’t get me wrong, I’ve never walked around Calhoun either, but I’ve been there plenty of times!

So we end up by the lake, and it’s a beautiful day… And then I remember that Patisserie 46 can’t be that far away, and since it’s our anniversary I just have to have one of their desserts, or at least the Big Ugly (a giant piece of meringue).

Of course on the way there we get sidetracked a lot, and I want to know the rental prices on the paddle boards, and I want to go stand on the dock (which I never do), and there is a kid who wants to run me over on his trike…

Then I see this:

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And memories of Brooklyn Botanical Gardens mixed with Conservatory Garden in Central Park flood my mind, and all of a sudden I have to have a picture of every single flower there, and a dozen pictures of the fountain!

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Common sense and Sam’s words of wisdom finally help me put my Samsung Galaxy away (but it does take great pictures! Doesn’t it?) And we continue our way to 46th street.

Having spent an extra 15 minutes trying to get to Patisserie 46 from the Rose Garden (there was a lot of road construction going on, so we had to take a detour), we come to find that it’s closed on Mondays. Which my phone informed me of, and I ignored the message an hour earlier.

Starving and upset (I didn’t get my sugar fix), we decide to go back to the car, brainstorming where we should eat. By the time we reach Harriet again Sam’s step-dad calls and says that he’s on his way over with Sam’s nephew! We hurry back home, having decided to eat at home, because A. It’s cheaper, and B. We don’t have to spend any money!

After Sam’s PB& J, and my sandwich with mustard and kielbasa, we head over to Mann 6 to watch Elysium. And let me tell you, Matt Damon isn’t all that bad! He does have a funky shaped nose though.

Plus dinner was amazing at the Convention Grill in Edina!

Now let’s fast forward to Wednesday, which is our actual anniversary. I get up at 5.45 and by 6.40 I am out the door to get to work. Having worked an 11 hour day, and watched Revenge (my latest obsession) on my break, I come home to a somewhat clean house, and decide to make something out of a zucchini, one of the mom’s in class brought for us. And only at about 8 pm that night, with the help of my in-laws, I find out that it is in fact our anniversary, and if it wasn’t for them wishing us a happy one, I would’ve forgotten all about it.

The moral of the story is: When you are married and you are forgetting your anniversary – it’s a good sign, that means you are not counting the days!

Happy Anniversary honey! I am not counting, I promise 🙂



Disclousure: I am participating in a Verizon Wireless blogger program, and received the device and 6 months of service for free, in exchange for my honest opinion. For more information, please click on the Verizon Voices Icon!


One Lovely SPAM Award ;)

I am really not big into giving blog awards, it reminds me of the whole chain letter system, back when we were little, we used to do it all the time. I guess nowadays we can simply call it SPAM 😉


But when Thirteenth and Hudson nominated me (thank you ladies!), I thought – why not? It’s a great opportunity to share more facts about me, so you can learn more about me, the person behind this blog!

So, the rules for the award are as follows…

  • Thank the person who nominated you
  • Add the “One Lovely Blog” image to your post
  • Share 7 things about you
  • Pass the award to 7 nominees
  • Inform the nominees chosen by posting on their blog

So here are a few things about me…

One – I love thrifting and freecycling for clothes! I will go to weird places to find clothes, but always end up with amazing finds!

Two – Even though I lived in Russia for a long long time, I feel really distant from the Russian community in the US, and I feel like my mentality is more American than Russian.

Three – I have pooped my pants once! The day before my Appendix surgery! That’s a legit reason, right?

Four – Sam and I met at church camp in 2006, I was his counselor! The no purpling rule didn’t apply to us! Needless to say I almost got fired from the same camp in 2007 because of him!

Five – I love my job at daycare, but I would love to work in Social Media or be a full time blogger one day, or…. as you can see I haven’t decided yet!

Six – I really want to be on TV! Hopefully soon 🙂 I was on TV in Russia with my mom when she got a makeover on the What Not To Wear show back in 2006

Seven – I never thought I’ll be in my 20’s and own a house, and be married, and have this amazing life in the US! I am a very happy person, I love waking up in the morning, I love going to work, I love life and I am very very grateful for it! And even though I have been staying away from all shapes and forms of organized religion, I am thankful to God for every second of my life!

Now I would like to nominate these lovelies:

Kate from Clear the Way – she is quirky and fun, and I think her and I would be friends in real life!

Nensi and Natasha from FreeUrCloset – they do a lot of personal style, DIY and plenty of lifestyle posts!

Naturally Stellar – she is a beauty/fashion/style guru! You ask her she’ll probably give you the answer off the top of her head!

Jennifer from Just one Chick

Loren from Lo’s Stylebook 

Nadine from Sage Atelier 

Roselinde of Roselinde

Alright, and here you have it!

Love you all ladies, keep spamming, I mean spreading blog love!



HELP! Early stages of hoarding?

I think I have a problem!

Seriously! Look at these pictures:

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– Earth to dining room table…

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– Husband’s desk

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– Our living room carpet looks like this 6 days out of the week…

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– Console table…

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– Crafts central

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– Random piles of stuff all over the bedroom floor

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– Closet space

And I know exactly what it is – I am lazy, I don’t like to clean, I don’t like to pick up, for some reason I want to save every scrap of paper, every ribbon, every magazine.

I keep telling myself that once we move into a house, it’ll get better, but who am I kidding – it won’t.

But nothing motivates me, I guess I am just a slob. And it’s the availability and accessibility of products here. I can go to a store, spend some money, get more stuff, but it won’t solve the clutter solution!

I have recently started an Etsy store, and one of the main reasons was to downsize my vintage collection. And yes, I have made some sales, but what’s 1-2 purses compared to a walk-in closet full of supplies, patterns, coats?

Yes, let’s talk about coats. I have an obsession with coats, I think I have about 10 of them! That’s the problem thrifters have – you walk into Savers or Goodwill and see an awesome coat say for $30, and of course you want to pick it up, because in your head you are already putting together outfits, and creating InstaCollages! And at this point you don’t realize that you have another dozen coats waiting to be worn, photographed, pinned, instagrammed, facebooked, etc.

Maybe I just need to vent, but I also function better, when more people know about my issue. I don’t need anyone to hold me accountable, I need to publicly tell everyone that modern day social networks are giving me an ADD, and that my real life is starting to go god knows where!

It’s a 1 bedroom apartment for crying out loud, how difficult could it be to clean?

So here you have it, I fessed up, and am now going to go and vigorously clean the apartment, making several trips to the dumpster!

Have a great day everyone,


That’s Minneapolis for ya!

Apparently if you want to have a good time in Minneapolis, you call a travel agent:

Milk starts at 9 gallons at CVS!

And Calhoun Bike Rental knows just what to put between your legs!

 With all my love from Minneapolis,


A Brick for a Face

Well maybe not for a face, but for a last name – the article about “I’m too pretty all other girls are jealous” (yes, I am quoting Jackie /Mila Kunis/ from That 70’s Show), by Samantha Brick has caused a completely different effect than what the author had hoped to. Especially in the US. They even discussed her on the Today show.

Interested in her persona and all the Twitter jokes, I didn’t want to judge, but form my own opinion instead. So I went and found the original article, where the author basically complains about the hardships she had to go through while dealing with other women in her every day life.

I can relate to the fact that I was “dumped” by oh so many girlfriends/best friends and that since about the age of 19 Sam has been my best friend! Thumbs up if your husband is your best friend as well!

You know they say – it’s important to learn to love yourself – and Samantha showed us just how to do that, and if you think you are prettier than her – good for you, but I’ve learned never to compare!

But just for this quote – “I don’t drink or smoke, I work out, even when I don’t feel like it, and very rarely succumb to chocolate” – I want to give her a thumbs up or a high five, whichever one is more appropriate in Britain/France!

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2124246/Samantha-Brick-downsides-looking-pretty-Why-women-hate-beautiful.html#ixzz1rBVeASYW

Have a fabulous day everyone!



Making fun of the 90’s, because 90’s were FUN

Presented below is a visual list of items that were popular in the 90’s, needless to say – I am glad they stayed in the 90’s! And if you grew up in Eastern Europe, you have to recognize some of these!

The hideous hair ties

I don’t even have the courage to call it a scrunchie, this is a hideous cut out of a clown’s wig, at least that’s what it seems like to me today, but back in the day these were extremely popular. Perfect for Gay Pride, don’t you think?

Titanic Leo was everywhere, and so was Kate

 on T-shirts and Buttons

 Leggings were also popular

 Plus there were fuzzy sweaters and plastic headbands

 There was a ton of other stuff, and no I am not nostalgic, I just like making fun of the 90s, because 90s were FUN!


Vodka Caption Contest!

Russian Family according to the Americans:

— Honey, I am home!
— Why are you so late?
— Our bear twisted his ankle — I had to give him vodka.
— Everyone sit down! Let’s have some vodka.
— Mom, I’m gonna go play with the bear.
— Alright, but drink some vodka first.
— Where is Grandpa?
—He’s been standing in line to get coupons, so that he can get more coupons for the past 2 weeks.

— Good thing he drank some vodka before he left. You shouldn’t rest on your laurels either – go have some vodka.

— Alright, son, make sure to write that KGB report in the evening! And on your way home, please buy some vodka, because we are running out.
— Honey, it’s too hot in here. Can you please turn the nuclear reactor off?
— Let me finish my vodka and I will turn it off. And you go play the balalaika (aka banjo).

Inspired by this joke that I read on my friend’s FB wall and that was also emailed to me by my other friend, I have decided not to only translate that joke, but to illustrate it as well! Due to the fact that my final paper in college was all about stereotypes that Russians have about Americans and vica versa, this makes it even more relatable and funny for me!


I hope you don’t take it too seriously, enjoy the joke and make captions for the pictures!




Highlights of my Day! (SHOES, duh!)

Number 1: I got my Minnesota driver’s license (not in the mail yet, but I got it). For those of you who don’t know – to get a license in this wonderful land of 10,000 lakes, you gotta take the Permit Test! Wha??? Yes, you heard me. So I studied, studied, studied, and viola – passed it! I was also excited about getting a new picture on my license, and have my weight change from 120 to 117 lb! The lady at the DMV and I have also decided that my eye color is Grey! Took us a while to figure it out, she was going to put it down as blue, but my eyes are anything, but… Well anyways, once the license actually comes in the mail, I’ll let you all take a look 🙂

Number 2: Thrifting! I totally planned that! You know me! After I was done at the DMV, which was located on Lake and Chicago, I went east to check out the local Savers. On the way there, though, I got sidetracked to St. Vincent’s thrift store and got the most amazing $4 pair of shoes you can get!

The coolest thing is that they are made in Brazil, so I wanted to use this moment and say hi to all of my Brazilian friends out there! You girls are a ton of fun!

And last but not least: Sam and I made Peanut Butter/Hershey Hugs Blossoms – aren’t they tasty looking?

I hope you had a Fantabulous day! I love you all, and thanks for reading 🙂



PS. I did make it to Savers and it didn’t impress me much. I will do a more detailed review later in one of my upcoming posts, where I will talk about the most popular thrift stores in Minneapolis! So stay tuned!


Twilight: Team Zhenya!

Team Edward, team Jacob, ah, screw this! Flannel should also be worn by lumberjacks, and lumberjacks alone. Or normal people, at a lumberjack party! The engagement ring was more of a fashion statement, and I am glad mine isn’t like this!

Now after having drunk a few glasses of sparkling wine, and watching Twilight I found myself in the streets of a small Russian town, walking home from a REAL girls night! I have walked home late at night before, living in NYC, I could walk all the way from subway on 79th and Broadway to 82nd and Central Park West! Hell I walked all the way to the subway from meat packing district, where girls get raped, killed or sold into slavery! No wonder they have their night clubs there. What was that one called? Amnesia? They still send me email updates 🙂 Anyways, I came up with a perfect idea (note: all my ideas are perfect after having some you know what!) – if anyone is harassing you in the street, put on your Edward face, don’t blink, and tell the person who is after you that you want his blood. Man, I really wanted to try this gig out on someone tonight, but everyone seemed to be going their own way, and nobody was out there to get me! But if I learned anything after watching Twilight, this was it!

Happy weekend everyone!

PS. This weekend’s coming up posts: A church wedding and DIY Vera Bradley like tote bag! Stay tuned!

You ain’t Russian if you don’t eat no Potatoes!

Being an ESL teacher I learn a lot of interesting facts from my students. For example, why they go to strip dance lessons at 9 am, what games they play on the XBOX, how they day dream about rescuing all the homeless animals in the world!

And their love for POTATOES!

Raw potatoes

Sweet potatoes……YUCK!

Heart shaped potatoes 

Pink potatoes

Cartoon potatoes


Couch potatoes 

Mashed Potatoes

Baked potatoes

Baked potatoes

Baked Potatoes

Fried potatoes

Fried potatoes

Bikini wearing potatoes

Faced and Faceless potatoes

French Fries Potatoes

Idaho Potatoes (DUH!)

No comments potatoes

Vodka Potatoes

While writing this post I learned that there is Russian Potato Bread and potatoes called Russian Banana Potatoes! Live and learn everyone, live and learn!