Tuesday, September 11, 2018

9/11 in Newtonville

I don’t want to forget to mention that on 9/11, my dad (who lived in Newtonville most of his adult life) went next door to his Muslim neighbors (the only Muslims living in Newtonville at the time) and sat with them throughout the day,  silently in their living room.  Just sat. No words.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Chocolate Chips and Herald Sulahian

One of the fondest childhood memories for Marash Girl was the visits made to our home by our cousins, the Sulahian family.  Why?  Aside from the fun, it was the chocolate chips.  Chocolate chips, you ask?  Yes!  Chocolate chips.  Because all of the kids in the family loved chocolate chips, Mother Jennie could not keep them in the house unless she placed them on the very top shelf of the kitchen cabinet.  That worked.  It worked, that is, until Marash Girl's cousin Herald visited.  Herald is very tall and he, too, loves chocolate chips, or did, way back then.  I wonder if he still does . . .

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

S . . . . r

For years, Marash Girl found it an embarrassment when someone (probably from Watertown where all the tai-lingual Armenians live) would drive by with a Massachusetts license plate that flaunted a lewd Turkish word.  Although in Massachusetts, all vanity plates were scanned before issue in order to avoid such an occurrence, apparently the scanner didn't know Turkish.  As Marash Girl hasn't seen this license plate in years (and she won't tell you the word, but you can guess it . . . and it didn't start with F . . .), she assumes that the scanner has learned Turkish as well!

Monday, June 11, 2018

If you live in Takoma Park, Maryland, Vote for Lorig for Progressive Leadership!

Dear Friends,
I am thrilled to be able to announce that today I am now running as a team with SENATOR WILL SMITH, DELEGATE DAVID MOON, and DELEGATE JHEANELLE WILKINS.

I am proud to be running with a team whose members have been endorsed by a number of progressive organizations and a coalition of activists and community servants. We are running as a team because we have shown a track record of legislative success and share a profound commitment to our community and positive progressive politics. Together, we bring our deep connections to every part of District 20. Together, we will become a powerful team to represent you and we are asking for your vote.

As Will Smith wrote in announcing our team, “...especially in this national political climate, I have become all the more appreciative of the type of politics we have inherited in District 20, a great tradition of progressive activism and positive politics. We have always looked to expand our tent and to bring more people in to the civic space so as to open the doors of opportunity for anyone willing to work hard. I believe our team will continue to advance and uphold those ideals in Annapolis.”
To join our campaign and help us win the primary, click here.
With hope for our future,
Lorig Charkoudian
P.S. Early voting for the primary starts on Thursday, June 14, 2018 and runs through Thursday, June 21, 2018 from 10 am until 8 pm. Election day is Tuesday, June 26th. You can obtain additional election information by visiting the Maryland State Board of Elections website at: https://elections.maryland.gov/voting/early_voting.html
Paid for by Friends of Lorig Charkoudian, Jill Feasley, Treasurer, Tebabu Assefa, Chair
Friends of Lorig Charkoudian
P.O. Box 11281
Takoma Park MD 20913 United States

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Armenian Ceramics and Pottery, Armenian Quarter, Old City, Jerusalem

                              Armenian Ceramics and Pottery, Armenian Quarter, Old City, Jerusalem    

                                       Thanks to an unknown Marash Girl enthusiast for above photo!            

Thursday, June 7, 2018

The Leaf Stealer

A short story?  Not yet!  But a true story!  Medzmama, born in Marash, a survivor of the Armenian Genocide, was as generous and as honest as a summer's day is long.  But when it came to house plants, you could not trust her.  In the hope that she would come across a plant with a stealable leaf, she would always keep a wet handkerchief, or in later days, a wet kleenex, or a wet paper towel in a small plastic bag in her purse, with the hope that she would come across a stealable leaf, a leaf that she could carefully remove from a full-grown house plant (a plant in someone else's house), to take home hidden in the wet handkerchief in the plastic bag in a side pocket of her purse, and plant in the soil of an established potted plant, in the hopes that it would root, and that she could transplant the rooted leaf into a pot of its own.  And she did exactly that, ending up with a houseful of plants that she had started from leaf.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

The Harvard Reunion

Ever take a look at yourself in the mirror?  Most of us flee the opportunity.  Actually, Marash Girl's mother-in-law used to tell Marash Girl that once she had passed the age of 50, she stopped looking into the mirror, at least not for very long!  (She was once the beauty of Marash!) But attending Marash Boy's Reunion made it impossible not to look reality square in the face, even if it was not your face!  There they were, all Harvard Men, all of an age before women were allowed into Harvard, all looking their age. Had that much time really passed?

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Water Your Garden With Waste Water!

Summer gardening got your water bill up?  If you can't afford to put in a water waste system that will double as water for your gardens, then do as the old folks did! Keep a pan in the kitchen sink, a catch all for water that comes from the faucet when you wash your hands, rinse a dish, run the water to get cold (or hot) water for food preparation . . . And empty that water . . . frequently, right into your garden!  (Sound gross?  Not if you empty the pan frequently!) And don't worry if the water is soapy.  That soap will wash away the insects that may be resting on the green leaves of your plants!  

You'll be surprised what a difference this simple system of water reuse will make in your water bill, how the environment and your plants will smile at the fact that you are using the water that you once, thinking it was waste water, threw down the drain!

Monday, June 4, 2018

Eshin bashu

See blog post of Thursday, November 15, 2012

Spitting on the head of a donkey . . . 

And so Marash Girl was entertaining her soon to be step-grandchildren, walking down Bigelow Avenue, surrounded by Armenian churches, and what did she find appropriate to discuss?  Turkish swears, of course!  (Not that she knew very many of them!). As, dear reader, you may be aware, it is said that Armenians pray in Armenian and swear in Turkish!

And so Marash Girl was telling her soon to be grandchildren how she was greeted when she first arrived unannounced at the door of Marash Boy's home in Springfield, Massachusetts. (You may have read this in an earlier blog, but so be it.). Marash Boy's mother answered the door, and went to get her son from his third floor study.  According to Marash Boy's mother, her son, upon hearing of Marash Girl's unannounced arrival, cursed, "Ashekin bashinu tukururum."  In English?  "I spit on the head of a donkey!"

Back to the present . . .  on a Saturday evening, Marash Girl was telling her step-granddaughters  the above story and ended the story by teaching the young ladies the phrase under discussion:  "Ashekin bashinu tukururum."   In order to get the curse perfect, they had to practice it over and over again, and there they were, Marash Girl and her granddaughters, cursing and screaming with laughter on a Saturday evening, as they walked down Bigelow Avenue, surrounded by Armenian churches!

It should be known that generally speaking, Marash Armenians pray in Armenian and curse in Turkish.

Your thoughts?

Sunday, June 3, 2018

If You See Something . . .

Today, the expression in popular use goes something like this: "If you see something, say something!"

But growing up, Marash Girl was stertoriously commanded, "If you see something (on the ground), don't leave it there!  Pick it up!"  Remembering, the command related to a "something" that was in the house or on the house grounds, a "something" that did not belong on the floor!  But to this day, Marash Girl is wont to leave any "something" on the ground that doesn't appear to belong there, even if it's not her ground!!!!

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Yard Sale Season!

Yard Sale Season!  Marash Girl's favorite season of the year, both for the weather, AND for the yard sales!  Such fun, sailing around the city, meeting folks, exchanging stories, and finding little treasures (which, of course, no-one needs, including the buyer and the seller) . . . Memories of the good old days, "yard sailing" around East Longmeadow with Shirley Tashjian, God rest her soul . . . Memories of the good old days, "yard sailing" throughout Monson (before the tornado took the cottage on the top of Wilbraham Mountain!)

Anyway, enough with the memories, and off to the yard sales!  Marash Girl will let you know if she has any luck today, finding a treasure for which she has no need!

Friday, June 1, 2018

Thank You, My Most Wonderful Amin!

Here I've been unable to write anything on my blog for a month, and Amin came and saved the day!  Thank you, Amin!  I love you like my own son!  Anyone who needs help with a computer or blog, let me know and I'll send you Amin's contact info!

Monday, April 30, 2018

"April showers . . ."

April showers bring May flowers, or so goes the ancient wisdom , , , Well, May is almost here, and so far, RAIN, RAIN, RAIN!

Friday, April 27, 2018


Marash Girl was raised in a culture in which chickpeas played a very important part . . . roasted salted chickpeas (eaten as one would roasted, salted peanuts ), and (beginning with dried chickpeas), soaked chickpeas that were later cooked into a "soolu" which contained fried onions and stewed tomatoes.  Delicious!  But chickpeas played an important in the aphorisms of the Armenian people as well. One in particular that Marash Girl will always remember:  "Lep deyersin, leplebou anliar."  Marash Girl has written the expression here as she heard it.  Unsure about the spelling . . . but to continue . . . the meaning of the expression is the important thing, since it was always spoken and she has never seen it written.  Meaning:  'When they say "chick", chickpea is understood.'  In other words, do I have to spell it out for you?

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Let Your Lawn Go Wild!

Marash Girl let her lawn go wild.  And look what she got?
A yardful of vinca.  She never has to mow the lawn again! And to add to the joy, the neighborhood kids can pick flowers to their hearts content and never have to worry about destroying the garden!

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

"If it weren't for the Turks, not one Armenian would be alive today."

Commemorating the survival of Marash Girl's father and his family was painful, and so he would always speak in irony.   Peter loved irony, and when it came to the Armenian Genocide, a Genocide which he survived, he was particularly witty:

 "If it weren't for the Turks, not one Armenian would be alive today," he was wont to say.

What did he mean?  Aside from irony, he was so appreciative of the help given him and his family in escaping the genocide of the Armenian people, a genocide perpetrated by the Ottoman Turkish government against their Armenian population between 1915-1920, that Peter always quoted the above, to his dying day at 98 years old.  That was Marash Girl's father!

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

On April 24, remembering the family that survived

Front lower left: Peter Bilezikian, standing behind to the left, Gulenia Bilezikian (Sulahian), To right of Gulenia is Yepros Kurtgusian Bilezikian, standing behind Yepros is Paul Bilezikian, to the right in photo back row is Mary Kurtgusian Pambookian.

Monday, April 23, 2018

The Way We Were c. 1961

Back row, l.to r.:  Nevdon Kupelian, George Bedirian, MJ Githens;
front row, l.to r.: Pauline, Bethel, Martha, Raffi Yeghiayan

Photos compliments of Nevdon Kupelian

Sunday, April 22, 2018

One Word Out Of Me . . .

Marash Girl's dad used to love to hear his friends brag about how they could make their children behave . . . he would always counter with a grin and the following:  "My children?  Just one word out of me  . . . and they do as they please!"  Do you believe it?

Saturday, April 21, 2018

First Signs of Spring: Chives for the Tasting!

Growing wild in Marsh Girl's front yard are wild chives . . . and all the neighborhood children love to come by to take one chive sprig and nibble at it until it is finished.  But they know they can come by tomorrow for another taste treat . . . as long as spring . . . or the chives . . . last!

Friday, April 20, 2018


At Claflin Elementary School in Newtonville, insults would fly, but so would the rejoinders!  Though she doesn't remember the insults, Marash Girl still remembers the favorite response to the insults that would hang loose and free at Claflin: "It takes one to know one!"  And that shut the hecklers up!

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Another Dreary New England Day!

As Marash Girl's father used to ask on such a day, "What do they do in Boston when it rains?"  After many fruitless efforts by his assembled entourage at coming up with the correct answer, her father would laugh and say, "They let it rain!"

Wednesday, April 18, 2018


When the roar of the street repair vehicles fills the early morning airwaves, Marash Girl's mind goes back to an old Armenian expression, an expression that she heard throughout her childhood . . . Bashladu!  What does it meant literally?  "It's begun!"  But more figuratively, it means aggravation of the speaker: "Oh, no, that's begun again!"  It could refer to a complaining child, or an unpleasant request, miserable weather, the repeated request of a cranky child, or simply what's happening today:  the unending roar of street repair vehicles! Here it goes again . . . it's begun!

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

"Good Enough For The Poor People!"

Every time anyone in the house would complain about anything, suggesting that what was happening, or what was a part of daily life, was not good enough, Peter would say, somewhat ironically, "Good enough for the poor people!"  Which he once was!  In fact, growing up in North Brighton in a three story walkup, during the Great Depression, he would see drunks happily hanging on to the lamp posts.  His conclusion?  "When I grow up, I want to be a drunk!"

Monday, April 16, 2018

The Boston Marathon: Snow, Wind, Rain, or Shine!

Looking out the window at the grey skies dripping with rain, tree limbs shivering in the wind, Marash Girl (for the first time in many a year) has decided to stay home and wait for the results of the Boston Marathon to appear across her newly gifted television screen.  Marash Girl, for as long as she can remember, whenever she was at home on that wonderful Monday (as a child or as an adult), would walk up to the corner of Lowell Avenue and Commonwealth to  cheer the runners on their way to Boston.  Now, hovered at her computer, keeping a wary eye on the wind and the rain, she continues to cheer the runners on to victory!  And the wonderful thing about victory at the Boston Marathon is that you are a victor whether you are first to come in or last to come in!  You've made it!  Bravo!

Sunday, April 15, 2018

What is a ring donut?

For years, Marash Girl understood donuts to be a sweet circle of dough with a whole in the center, or as some dieters used to call doughnuts, a big fat zero.  But yesterday, Marash Girl met up with a new concept . . . that of the ring donut  . . . as opposed to a cruller?

Saturday, April 14, 2018

A friend from the Past

Marash Girl's best friend from Day Junior High School called her last month.  Or rather, she returned Marash Girl's call.  What memories that call elicited!  Back in the day, Marash Girl's parents could never understand how Marash Girl could have just left school and still,  upon her return home, have enough new information to share with her friend for an hour on the telephone.

Friday, April 13, 2018

ART AND SOUL at the New Rep

A Rock and Roll enthusiasts celebrate at the Reception and Concert at the Mosessian Theatre in Watertown:  Art and Soul

Rock 'n Roll historian, acclaimed author, & prolific storyteller Peter Guralnick (photo below) was honored yesterday evening at the Mosessian Theatre.  "The Art & Soul exhibition features  professional and emerging contemporary art, as well as fan art, that is inspired by, pays tribute to or otherwise celebrates musicians, bands and music culture."

Below, Peter Guralnick signs copies of his new book, SWEET SOUL MUSIC:  RHYTHM AND BLUES AND THE SOUTHERN DREAM OF FREEDOM.


Above photos by Marash Girl

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Friday, April 13

No black cats in sight, but still, ya gotta be careful!  Tomorrow is Friday the 13th!

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

The Roar on Maple Avenue

Methinks Marash Girl has Spring Fever (do you know what that is?) or could it be the construction vehicles on the street in front of her house, vehicles that drive up well before 7 AM and get to work exactly at 7 AM.  The roar that emanates from these vehicles eradicates any sense of rest that the folks on Maple Avenue may have experienced during the night!

When will this all end?  Do we really need new sidewalks on the other side of this little dead-end street?

Ear plugs, please!

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

My Daddy Is Not A Liar!

Driving along Route One the other day, Marash Girl remembered a long ago occurrence; in fact, an event that took place when she was 8 years old (not telling how long ago that was!)  Marash Girl was going fishing with her father . . . her father was driving along the old Route One when a policeman on a motorcycle pulled out from behind a large billboard that was installed on the side of the road and pulled my father over.  As they argued about the speed at which Marash Girl's father was driving, the policeman accused her father:  "You're a liar!"  Marash Girl immediately intervened into the discussion:  "My father is NOT a liar!"  At that point, both the policeman and my father burst out laughing, and, as they say, that was the end of that!  They bid each other farewell with the shaking of hands and the policeman's parting words, "Slow down!"

Monday, April 9, 2018

One Day Left from the Old Days

There's an old Armenian expression that refers to a moment in the present that takes you back into the past.  It translates, "One day left from the old days."  That was the phrase that entered her mind when the neighborhood children gathered at Marash Girl's front door with their cymbals and triangles and horns and voices singing songs to the spring day!  Marash Girl ran inside, grabbed her cymbals, and joined them in the celebration welcoming spring to New England.

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Marash Girl Meets Limoges China

Marash Girl walked into the living room where her mom was visiting with Auntie Agnes.
"Hi, Auntie Agnes." As Marash Girl picked up a small china box from the fireplace mantel, Marash Girl waved to Auntie Agnes who was sitting on the sofa across from the fireplace.  "What's this ugly thing?" Marash Girl asked her mother in a loud voice.

Marash Girl's mom cautioned Marash Girl.  "Oh, that's a gift . . ." but before Marash Girl's mom could finish her sentence, Marash Girl interrupted, "It's so awful.  Why do you have it here?"

"Auntie Agnes just gave it to us as a gift. She brought it from Paris. It's a piece of Limoges          China . . ." Marash Girl's mom said in a low voice.

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Yogurtlu yumurta!

Mommy, Marash Girl can hear you singing its praises now!  When Marash Girl thinks of yogurt yumurta, she hears hear mother's voice, she sees her mother's smiling face!  She checked the internet to see if the recipe was recorded anywhere, but she could not find any hint of such a recipe.  So here it is, dear reader, in memory of Marash Girl's mommy!

Yogurt (in Marash Girl's childhood, it was her mother's homemade yogurt!)

Scrambled eggs (You know how to make scrambled egg, right?)

Crack a bunch of eggs.  Beat up the yolks with the whites.  Heat butter on stove and cook the eggs somewhat loosely scrambled (but not HARD scrambled).

Serve hot with cold yogurt spooned over the hot scrambled eggs, and there you have "Yogurtlu Yumurta", a perfect Saturday night supper!

Friday, April 6, 2018

Driving Down Lowell Avenue

And driving down Lowell Avenue today during the snowstorm reminded Marash Girl of her elementary school days, days when she would walk a good mile or more -- often in the snow -- from her house to Newtonville Square to the old brick Claflin School . . . passing the houses of classmates, friends and relatives . . . and after school, walking down Walnut Street and turning down Bowers Street to her daddy's store, Newtonville Electrical Company, to get a ride home . . . good memories.

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Get Rid of the Bad!

Marash Girl has probably written about this advice that her dad's friend gave her many years ago, but she's going to write the advice once again.  Why?  It's advice that works well in many a circumstance.  The advice was given her by Johnnie Vaich, the owner (many years ago) of Vaich Camera Shop in Newtonville, Massachusetts.  When Marash Girl first ventured into photography (again, many years ago), she would take many photos of the same fence . . . (in those days, she loved photographing fences, especially old dilapidated fences, fences falling to the ground . . .)  Vaich's advice?  Don't try to choose the best photo; just get rid of the bad ones!  You'll end up with the best!  

Good advice to use in whatever realm you choose!

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Put Up or Shut Up

Whenever kids in Marash Girl's elementary school (Claflin School) would get into a heated argument over something mindless (can't even think of an example), one kid would say to the other, "Put up or shut up!"  meaning, "Put up your dukes or shut up!"  Dukes?  Fists.  The disagreer usually shut up!

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

The Return of the Easter Baskets

This Easter Sunday mystery gets curiouser and curiouser.  When we returned home on Easter Sunday early evening, we went up to work on the third floor, and when we came downstairs for supper, there were the two Easter baskets full to the brim with Easter goodies -- nothing missing -- inside of our house on the front hall table.  Yikes!

Monday, April 2, 2018

Who Would Steal Easter Baskets?

A desperate Easter Bunny must have stopped by Marash Girl's front porch yesterday morning, soon after she had put out a grocery bag full of treat-filled Easter baskets in preparation for her trip to her grandchildren's home for Easter dinner.  "Old Marash Girl went to the porch to gather the baskets of treats; But when she got there, The porch chair was bare, And so the poor grandkids had none."  Not so, however; Marash Girl would never allow her grandchildren to be disappointed on Easter, and so Marash Girl and Marash Boy scurried around to the local shops to gather up whatever Easter goodies and baskets they could find on Easter Sunday morning, and yes, they found baskets, and filled them with those Eater goodies.  But who would take a bag of treat filled Easter baskets from a small dead-end street in Newton Corner on Easter Sunday morning?  Only an April Fool!

P.S.  And speaking of April Fools, it's snowing outside -- the trees and grooves of the houses on the street all covered in white as I write this P.S.

Sunday, April 1, 2018

Krisdos haryav y merelotz -- ohrnyal e haroutioun Krisdosi!

Krisdos haryav y merelotz -- ohrnyal e haroutioun Krisdosi!
Christ is risen and conquered death . . . blessed is the resurrection of Christ!

So Armenians greet each other with joy on this holiest of days.

Playing the Armenian Easter Egg game in Southern California on Easter morning!  Photo by Marash Martha

Saturday, March 31, 2018

Getting Ready for Easter!

Now that you have those eggs dyed blood red (yes, blood red symbolizing the blood of Christ as the soldiers stabbed Christ as Christ hung dying on the cross), you must refrigerate the eggs to keep them fresh for Easter.  On Easter, you and your guests will play the age old Armenian Easter egg game which symbolizes Christ's breaking through the tomb and conquering death.  The game will be described in tomorrow's blog, so stay tuned!

Friday, March 30, 2018

Hot Cross Buns for the Neighborhood Kids on Good Friday

At noon (if not all day) on Good Friday, the clouds cover the sun. Yes, almost every Good Friday, the clouds cover the sun at noon.  This Friday, the first day of Passover and Good Friday, reminded Marash Girl that when her kids were growing up, all the neighborhood kids gathered to tell their stories of Easter and Passover, after which they all participated in shaping the dough for hot cross buns, and when the buns came out of the oven, decorating the baked buns with a cross made of white icing.  Yes, and of course, sitting on the front porch eating the buns they had hand decorated, buns still hot from the oven.

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Onion Skins for Easter?

What?  Onion Skins for Easter?  Well, not exactly.  But we Armenians couldn't have Easter without onion skins.  It is the onion skins boiled in water that create a deep red dye.  Nope. Not red onion skins.  Brown onion skins!  (Who would have guessed?) Once the water turns red, you can remove the onion skins, and boil fresh eggs in the now crimson water, leaving those eggs to steep in the dye after the eggs have been boiled.  Or, alternatively, you can boil the eggs in the now red water with the onion skins remaining in the water with the eggs. (The egg shells are less likely to crack.)  This will result in boiled eggs which are deep red in color with an abstract design created by the skins with which the eggs were boiled.  Either way, the eggs are now ready for the Armenian Easter Egg game.  More on that tomorrow!

Wednesday, March 28, 2018


Have you started gathering your onion skins yet?  You'd better get to the grocery store and beg the fruit and vegetable man to scour the bottom of the onion bin for you!  Why?  Tune in tomorrow to find out!

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Playing the Piano for the Marashtsis in Watertown

Recently, Marash Girl attended a meeting of the Union of Marash Armenians, Watertown Chapter.  The entertainment consisted of a young man performing a piano duet with his teacher.  The scene was reminiscent of a day many years ago when Marash Girl herself was introduced, walked onto that same stage, and stood curtseying at the piano (could it have been the same grand piano?).  After the welcoming applause, all was quiet -- all was quiet until she sat on the piano bench, and played the first notes of the piece she had so carefully memorized  . . . that was the signal for the audience . . . the folks in the audience immediately began to chatter.  No matter!  Marash Girl happily played on, aware that were she to make a mistake, no-one would notice!  At her last note, all became silent for one moment, and then a thunder of applause -- applause, she realized , that the audience gladly proffered as they realized they could now go back to chattering without guilt, which was, in reality, the reason they had all gathered that day in Watertown, Massachusetts.

Monday, March 26, 2018

The Doll at the Top of the Stairs

Auntie Azadouhi lived on the top floor of a third floor walkup in West Newton.  The stairs were dark and creaky, and after we reached the top of the stairs, and opened the door, there were more stairs to climb, but little Marash Girl and her cousins and siblings finally made it.  Uncle Paul would drive us there every year on Christmas Eve so that the six children could greet the commemoration of Christ's birth with song, Christmas carols sung (sans accompaniment) with zest to our Uncle Arakel and his daughters!  At the top of those stairs lived Uncle Arakel, and his two daughters, Azadouhi and Zarouhi, and his remaining son Ashod.  [Ara had gone drowned with his ship (he was a member of the United States Navy) when his ship was torpedoed during World War Two.]

Whenever we visited, Auntie Azadouhi would take down the beautifully crafted, beautifully dressed little doll from the top shelf of the closet at the top of the stairs and allow us to play with her childhood keepsake.  When we asked to take the doll home with us, she simply stated, "If you take it home with you, it won't be here the next time you visit, and you'll have no doll to play with!"  We accepted her reasoning as sound.  But years passed, and people passed, and Marash Girl still misses that doll that lived at the top of the stairs.

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Friday, March 23, 2018

Musta Been a Lie!

Marash Girl's elementary school classmates had a smart retort for almost everything.  Today she's remembering (not forgetting) one such incident.  Whenever she wanted to comment to a friend, but forgot what she was about to say, the friend would snap back, "Musta been a lie!"

Thursday, March 22, 2018


It was our wonderful welcome when Karoun arrived and Karoun arrived!  Happy Birthday, Karoun!

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Finish all the food on your plate!

Finish all the food on your plate, ordered Marash Girl's father.  "You don't know what it's like to go hungry!" he exclaimed.  In fact, if she, as early back as she can remember, left any food on her plate, she would have to eat it cold at supper, and if she didn't finish it then, she had to eat it cold for breakfast.  She learned quickly to finish all that was on her plate. .  . to the point where her friend asked her, many a year later, why Marash Girl was "cleaning her plate" of every bit of food.  Marash Girl stopped to ponder that for a bit, and then explained.  Her friend pointed out that it was only polite to leave a bit of something on your plate -- to show that you were not a "starving Armenian"!  Or to show, at least, that you were not food deprived.  The opposite in the Armenian culture -- finish it all to show that it was delicious, and that you appreciated the effort that your hostess, your mother, or the cook --  take your pick -- had made on your behalf.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

The Calm Before The Storm

We're waiting.  We're waiting.  The weather promises snow and the supermarkets are full.  The Boston area has been hit numerous times in the last several weeks with snow storms and the threat of same, and everyone seems surprised . . . snow?  Again?  Really? . . . but, hey, this is New England, and if you've lived here for any amount of time, you should be used to it (it being snow storms) by now!  Nevertheless, just a whisper of a pending snowstorm, and the supermarkets are full, the kids are joyful, (the possibility of no school and the chance to play in the snow), the electric company anxious! Those of us who live here in New England wonder what it must be like to live  in those areas of the USA where school is never called, folks never have to bundle up and stock up with supplies,  because there is not even the whisper of a chance for a snowstorm!

Monday, March 19, 2018

Raffi as Grimsby

 Takoma Park, Maryland:  Takoma Park Middle School's Drama Club Presented 
Disney's THE LITTLE MERMAID on March 15, 16, and 17, 2018
Rafayel Charkoudian-Rogers playing Grimsby (second from left)

Friday, March 16, 2018

"Never Again!"

"This is What 'Never Again' Looks Like." Lorig Charkoudian (white hat) in upper left corner of photo.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Lorig for Delegate in Maryland!

Finish all the food on your plate ...   So many supporters, so few yard signs!

There are so many people who want to show their support for Lorig's campaign with a yard sign, we're running out!

Come on, folks! Help us get a yard sign to all who want one by contributing to Lorig's Yard Sign Fund! We just need $2,000 to reach our goal of 400 more signs!

Click here to help!

Don't let these kids be the last to have a Lorig Charkoudian yard sign. (Seriously, they can't even vote.) Support the fund today!

Help us get a yard sign to every supporter! Thank you!

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Free Writing, Free Thinking!

Have you ever just let your mind wander?  It's amazing what you might come up with . . . a long buried memory, a beautiful poem, a new way to make paklava . . . you never know!