This is the last entry of our summer holiday... One week after our arriving to Terni my aunt and cousin (Judit and Antonia) drove down to visit us. Together we went to visit Narni. Narni is a small mideval town next to Terni - Emanuel, Giacomo and Samuele were born in Narni! Although many people don't know, this small town inspired C. S. Lewis to write his famous book: The Chronicles of Narnia. Tha latin name of Narni is Narnia, and what is the symbol of the city? The lion... Some pictures:
The laws were read from here
A street in the "downtown"
Three ladies and a prince
We also went to see the dolphins in Rome. The Zoomarineis open all year around, and is a very nice facility for the various attractions. Since it was summertime, it was very crowded and we could see only the dolphins and the parrots.
The 15th of August is a holiday in Italy, and by now a tradition in our family that from the heat we escape to the nearby mountain on 1000 m high. The family includes around 20 people from the part of Emanuel's father. We all bring our homemade food for lunch and dinner and we share it with each other...
Of course we couldn't miss going to Rome. I am not sure how many kilometers we walked, but one thing I am sure of: at the end of the day we couldn't feel our feet any more...
The chocolate rolls are the all time favorite of Hungarian kids...and not only kids... I usually make the dough in the bread making machine because it simply works better than my hands... This recepie has worked very well for me, I hope it will work also for you...
For the dough:
400 g flour 2 eggyolks 1 pkg of dried yeast 40 g butter 44 g sugar 250 ml milk
For the filling: 140 g sugar 130 g butter 3 Tbsp cocoa powder
200 ml cream 50 g sugar
Mix all the ingredients of the dough and work it well with your hands - at least 20 minutes (or use the machine...it is MUCH easier). Let it rise in a warm place for 1 hour. When it is done, extend it with a rolling pin in a form of a square and 2 cm thick. Pour on it the filling that you previously mixed well, roll it up and cut it in 2-3 cm thick slices. Put these rolls in a medium sized pan - on baking paper - 2 cm apart and let them rise for additional 30 minutes. Bake them in preheated oven on medium heat. When the rolls start to get a golden color, pour over them the cream and sugar mix. This will make them remain soft. Bake them for 10 more minutes on lower heat.
This week we had 2 very important events. On Monday Giacomo went to kindergarden! We were hoping that the transition would go well, and until now it seems perfect. He didn't cry (I did), he had big eyes when he entered his classroom, and he tried the children-sized toilet right away. His sign is the washing machine! On these pictures he is shoing his favorite feeder before leaving.
The other very important event occured on Tuesday, when Giacomo became 3 years old! The day before we went to a huge toystore, and he could choose 2 toys - maybe it was already a present to bring him there and let him look around, he seemed to be in paradise! He chose a puzzle with Nemo's father and Dory on it (NB! it is for 9 years and older, 200 pieces, but he is doing it very well...a couple of weeks and we can buy another one), the other toy is Spiderman on his motocycle, that goes in every direction and it even has a light!
The way back seemed to be a bold idea, but it went very smoothly. We left Polgar at 4 AM and decided not to stop for the night, so we went straight to Terni. (How far it is? Around 1500 km? Plus 2 kids...) We arrived at 10 PM, and the long trip went just fine. The children didn't complain, they slept a lot. As you can see below, even the sandwiches with some Hungarian cold cuts were delicous specialities for them.
(Secret: At the end of the trip, around 1 hour before Terni Giacomo started to move continuosly in his seat. So we stopped at Perugia and bought a portable DVD player. It made miracles!!!! Giacomo didn't say a word until we were in the car...it is our best buy in these past few months. I can only recommend it for these kind of travels.)
One day we took advantage of the family's babysitting offer: the kids stayed with Judit, Antonia, Eszter and Isabelle, and we went to Budapest. We wanted to see 2 things. One was the Terror Hàza (House of Terror), the other one the Opera-house. Unfortunately, in the House of Terror everything is under copyright, so it is prohibited to take pictures, but you will be able to read Emanuel's words about it soon. About the Opera-house you can see pictures here, and there are some words about it, as well.
House of Terror
While we were in Budapest, the kids were busy, too: they went to Tiszacsege (a small village) to see the "zoo" of the local mayor. Looking at the pictures it seems that they had fun and the animals were happy to get some extra food...
Yesterday we had a pizza party with Peggy and her two kids, Grace and Freeman. Unfortunately her husband, Ben couldn't come, because he was out of town. After the pizza we crowned our meal with a Hungarian sweet, that is called Coconut cubes. Since the recipe has been requested by many of you, here it is:
30 g margarin or butter 250 g sugar 3 Tbsp honey 1 egg 280 g flour 1 pkg baking powder 200 ml milk 1 tsp vanilla zest of a half lemon
For the chocolate:
250 g butter (you can use margarin as well) 180 g sugar 5 Tbsp cocoa powder 10 Tbsp milk
Dried, grated coconut.
1. Melt the butter, the honey, the sugar, the egg, the milk, the vanilla, the lemon zest in a saucepan. 2. Add the flour and the baking powder, mix. Pour it in a medium sized baking pan, use baking paper, preheat the oven, and bake it slowly for about 30 minutes. 3. Let it cool down, cut it in cubes. 4. In a saucepan melt the butter and add the sugar, the cocoa powder and the milk. Dip each cube in it, then cover them with the coconut. (If the chocolate is too thick, add a few spoon of milk - one at a time.) 5. Eat them!
(If the chocolate was too much, mix it with some coconut, it is very good the next day. If there isn't anyone who would want to eat it, call Emanuel, he will go right away!)
After the very big heat one evening finally cool air arrived following a storm. We thought this is the perfect time to see Polgar. Only the 4 of us went and honestly for me this was the highlight of the vacation. We didn't do anything interesting, we didn't see anything special...we enjoyed the time together. We visited a church and enjoyed a magnificent sunset. Here are some pictures:
On our holiday we didn't only go to the local thermal bath. We visited the animal park in Miskolc and the four stars Spa in Miskolc-Tapolca. At the animal park Giacomo had a wonderful and also new experience. He went horse riding!! First we thought that he would be afraid, but he climbed up without hesitation. The miracle was that he remained seated!! Unfortunately at this point our camera's battery went off so we couldn't take pictures... We took one earlier of the kangoroos though!! He also loved the goats, he went inside to feed and touch them.
The spa (Barlangfurdo) is a usual stop for us when we are in Hungary. Looking at the pictures you probably understand the why. (For me it is even more special, because I was baptized here 13 years ago!!) If you want to rest, to relax, or simply want to enjoy the warm and cold water, the sauna, the hydrotherapy, etc., then you have to "stop by" once you are there. It is inside of a natural cave and the water comes from it. About the quality of the water and the various therapies you can read here, there are also some nice pictures, too. The outside part has 3 new children swimming pool with various toys. You can also find a deep swimming pool and the so called "shell pool". These two are open all year long. I think I prefer to go to this spa in wintertime, because from the inside lobby I can see the trees covered with snow while I am in swimming suit - running after my children. I can enjoy the warm water massaging my back, and at the same time if I am brave enough I can go outside in the minus 20 degrees in the shell pool and sit down in the steaming water looking at the snow around me...it is fantastic!!
This time it was summer, and we had a lot of fun! Samuele crolled after swimming for 30 minutes and he slep for 1 hour on my aunt's tummy. In the cave there was a current for 15 minutes in every hour. I am not sure who enjoyed it more - us or the kids. We put them in their ring, we grabbed them and enjoyed the fast current. It was a cool experience!
We changed our car. We said goodbye to the Renault Grand Scenic, and welcomed the Ford Focus! Finally a car with dark grey color...Emanuel 's dream. (it is dark grey, but on the photo it seems blue) Yippie!!!! We like it, we like it!