Thursday, December 23, 2010

Yeni Iliniz Munarek!

Today after school I had my New Years party with both of my 6th grade classes! The theme was "New Years Around the World," and we had spent the whole month exploring New Years in Australia, China, Azerbaijan, South Africa, the United Kingdom, Brazil and the United States. My original plan was to have a play, but for reasons out of my control that idea was shot down. Lucky for me, because this party was one for the record books!
We had tons of foods, drinks, decorations and music as 40 students and teachers and I had a real Azerbaijani New Year, while learning about what other countries do around the world. Azerbaijani New Year actually quite resembles our Christmas as it turns out. "Shaxta Baba," aka Santa Claus comes on New Years Eve at midnight and fills their "Yolka," or tree (like a Christmas Tree) with presents. Shaxta Baba has the help of "Qar Giz," Snow Girl, as he travels around New Years Eve.
The classes were split into groups and each made a poster with drawings and maps of the country they were learning about. Each group gave their presentation (in Azeri, I gave them the info in English and we worked out in translations, pictures and acting what it meant and they took notes in Azeri), then I played music that I had found from each country, we all danced a little, gave the group a big round of applause and then the next group went. We started with Australia and made our way around the world. Uncle Mark, you will be happy to know that I used "We Will Rock You" as the US's New Years song, it reminded me of growing up :).
Mason, Marie, Connie and our newest site-mate, AZ8 Alise, came to help, watch, eat lots of food and have a good time at the party! Mason is helping here with "Pin the Carrot on the Snowman." It was a really big hit with the teachers and students alike, and a good win for me! Now I'm off the Georgia to celebrate Christmas and New Years! Happy Holidays everyone! And its never to early to say, Yeni Iliniz Mubarek (Happy New Years!)!!!!!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Party Time!

Today we had an end of 2010 teachers party just for girls :). There was a lot of dancing, singing, eating and drinking tea. I was the designated photographer and entertainer. And now I am SO full! I'm not eating dinner tonight haha.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Yes, It Is True

Fire really does come from the ground in Baku.

All of us PCV's were invited to a Thanksgiving party at the US Ambassador's house hosted by the charge d' affaires (there's no Ambassador at this time). Mason and I had the opportunity to go to a play at The International School in Baku with some new friends so we came in a day early. The play was so much fun! And the next day we got a tour of parts of Baku we hadn't gone before, including to this "Mountain of Fire." Its more like a hill, but yes, it is just naturally burning from the ground. There used to be more places like this all over the Baku area, but the drilling of oil has dried most of them up. The Thanksgiving party was great too! So much food, it felt like home! I even had to unbutton my pants after eating :). Now I'm working on a New Year's performance/party at school and then its off to Georgia for Christmas!