Monday, January 30, 2012

The Secret Starbucks

Another Starbucks quietly opened recently in Rosario - so quietly, in fact, that the address isn't even listed on their website yet and I've seen no advertising for it. It's a big, sunny store on Tucuman (and almost Mitre). Let's meet for coffee soon!

According to this article, they're also opening one on Cordoba and Oroño soon. None of the stores are selling iced coffee (as in cold drip coffee) but said they might if enough people ask for it. Go! Ask! I can't afford to keep getting those damn frappuccinos!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Better World Books

This post is a shout out to my favorite online bookstore - Better World Books. You may have already heard about my love for this great organization, but it's worth saying it one more time because not only is it a literacy charity, it's an amazing resource for expats. Because it's hard to buy affordable English books down here, and if you order them from Amazon you'll end up paying bundles on customs charges and shipping. But BWB offers free worldwide shipping, and customs isn't a problem since it's a charity. I ordered 4 books and it took a while - over 6 six weeks - but I have them here now :)

They (the books) even sent me a lovely little message to confirm my order:

Holy canasta! It's me... it's me! I can't believe it is actually me! You could have picked any of over 2 million books but you picked me! I've got to get packed! How is the weather where you live? Will I need a dust jacket? I can't believe I'm leaving Mishawaka, Indiana already - the friendly people, the Hummer plant, the Linebacker Lounge - so many memories. I don't have much time to say goodbye to everyone, but it's time to see the world! I can't wait to meet you! You sound like such a well read person.
I know the trip to meet you will be long and fraught with peril, but after the close calls I've had, I'm ready for anything (besides, some of my best friends are suspense novels). Just five months ago, I thought I was a goner. My owner was moving and couldn't take me with her. I was sure I was landfill bait until I ended up in a Better World Books book drive bin. Thanks to your socially conscious book shopping, I've found a new home. Even better, your book buying dollars are helping kids read from Brazil to Botswana. Eagerly awaiting our meeting...

Since they finally arrived, I thought I would post this message to let all the expats out there know about such a terrific find. And ps - I'm not being paid or anything to say this, I just really appreciate the reading material. 

Monday, January 16, 2012

Happy Birthday Bucket!

My little boy turned one. That means that he's roughly the equivalent of a 15 year old human (according to Cesar), I think. With him around, time goes by so fast and for a while I could measure it by his growth -- by marking it on the wall. But he's all grown-up and now I measure it by how many pairs of Havianas he's eaten (always the right one). So, for his birthday I gave him something else to eat. A birthday cake!

He wasn't too sure about it at first, 

but then he realized he could eat it, too. 

Bucket's 1st Peanut Butter Carrot Cake
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup baking soda
  • 1/4 cup natural peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 1 egg

Whisk together flour and baking soda. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix until thoroughly combined. Pour batter into greased pan and bake at 350F/180C for 30 minutes, or until a knife comes out clean. I used a small loaf pan along with 4 cupcakes which took about 25 minutes. 

Let cool and ice with your choice of doggie frosting. For this one, I combined peanut butter with a little light cream cheese and honey, though it wasn't easily spreadable - peanut butter would work great!

And now, a look back to when he was just a teensy playful puppy...