Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Home for the holidays!

It feels so great to be back home. For some reason this year I was starting to get home sick. I mean I could have handled staying in Prague because I have family there and I could stay occupied by traveling, but in the end I'm so happy I bought my ticket and came home. I totally surprised everyone :D I only told my dad Ludek (who was kind enough to pick me up) and my sister Janet. And of course David knew too.

So the reason I decided to come back was because I didn't want to have to go through being by myself again for 3 whole months. It's nice to be able to hang out with David and close friends and family. I know the trade off is that I'll miss Prague night life and my Prague friends, but I think I will hopefully be able to study in peace here and start working out too. I think I'm going to go swimming with Tiffany and also use the gym. I also decided that in order to pay for the ticket to come back to the states I needed to move from our apartment where we paid 5,000 crowns a month and move in with Pepik. This way we don't have to pay any rent while I'm gone and when we come back.

My flight this time was a very good one because it was as direct as it could get. I went from Prague to Amsterdam to Portland. Total fly time was only 11 hours and altogether it was about 14 hours. There were a few times I was a little worried about missing a plane but everything went smoothly. One annoying thing was that everything was taking forever at every check point. Normally I go through check-in fast and even connecting flights are fast, but this time I had to wait in lines and cut it close to fly times... Thankfully there were no weather delays. I also brought the dogs with me because I've decided that they are going to stay with my mom while I'm in Prague. I feel bad because I know I'm going to miss them SO much. :'(

After my dad picked me up I had him drop me off at my mom's because I still had to surprise her. She wasn't home though, she was actually shopping in Portland. I had to wait until about 10pm when they came home. I was getting so tired waiting (I didn't get too much sleep on the flights) so I made myself busy with cookie baking. Finally when they arrived I ran to the door to unlock it and saw my mom peeking through the window. Her face was so shocked, it was funny. I was actually able to record some of her reaction since I grabbed the camera. I also surprised grandma, Tiffany and Jessica pretty good.Christmas dinner at my mom's was pretty good. We has a sweet tasting ham with rosemary potatoes. I also made some grog (which turned out a bit too strong). Surprisingly I recieved a bunch of presents even though I just showed up last minute! I don't know how they pulled it off but it was awesome. I recieved a Kohls card, money, clinque stuff, bath & body works stuff, and some other little goodies. :)

On the 25th we went to visit grandma. She still had no idea that I was coming, so to make things more fun I hide in the car are sneaked my way to the door and busted in. She was just as shocked as my mom was.Below is a picture of Tiffany and David a few days after New Years. We were coming home from Daniel's parents house.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Linecka Kolecka (LINZ TARTS)

One more recipe before Christmas... This is a classic one and is actually around most of the year, you can go into bakeries and pick these up.


  • 2 sticks (1 cup) of soft, unsalted butter
  • 2/3 (5 oz) cup of sugar
  • 1 Tsp of grated lemon rind
  • 1 Tbs vanilla extract
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 2 and 1/4 cups (18 oz) of all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup (6 oz) or raspberry, strawberry or red currant jelly
  • 1/4 (2 oz) of powdered sugar


  1. Preheat the oven for 325 F
  2. In a big bowl, mix in the butter, sugar, lemon grind, vanilla extract and egg yolks.
  3. Slowly mix in the 1 and 3/4 cups of flour
  4. Work the mixture into a dough and place it in the fridge for about 2 hours (or overnight)
  5. Pull the dough out of the fridge and let it stand in the room temperature for a while until it is workable (about 1 hour)
  6. The hardest part: Roll out the dough onto a floured surface until it is about 1/4 inch thick (coat the pin with flour as well; as you are rolling out the dough, keep sprinkling it with a little bit of flour at the time to prevent sticking)
  7. Use cookie cutters (circle-shaped ones are the most authentic) to cut out the cookies and in half of them cut out a smaller circle in the center.
  8. Transfer the cookies on an ungreased baking sheet (use spatula for the transfer if necessary) and bake them for 10 to 12 minutes (see step 1 below)
  9. Once the cookies have cooled down spread half o them with jelly (see Step 2 below)
  10. Sprinkle the cookies “holed” cookies (i.e. cookies with holes) with with powdered sugar
  11. Put those powdered cookies on top of the jellied cookies
Recipe from czechmatediary.com

Friday, December 17, 2010

Must try! Svařák aka Hot mulled wine.

Today was my only break (because I discovered that I don't have to take an exam til later) so I decided to treat my self to a svařák! I could have gone to the Christmas market right across the street but thinking about it I realized that it would be cheap and tastier if I just made some myself. What I really love about the hot wine is that it is the EASIEST and most festive drink ever! This holiday I totally suggest you try to make it... the best is to bust if out at a family or friend's house to surprise then.

~1 liter red wine
~1-2 cinnamon sticks
~6-7 cloves
~lemon slices (can also add orange slices)
~sugar to taste

That's it! So simple!
Simmer/warm on stove for a bit. Enjoy!

Sunday, December 5, 2010


Mikulas, St. Nicholas' day, is on the 5th December and marks the start of Christmas for Czech people.Late afternoon on the 5th December three figures move slowly around all the different city squares: St. Nicholas, an Angel and the Devil.

St. Nicholas asked all the kids if they have been a good kid during the past year and also asked them to sing a song. Then the kids would get candy treats from them if they sang or were good. Eric dressed up as a Cert (devil) and ran around trying to scare little kids and then gave them some candy.

Naughty children don't get sweets, they get a sack of black coal or potatoes. If they have been really naughty, they will be placed in the Devil's sack and taken to hell. As you can imagine, little kids are terrified of the Cert. My mom used the whole "Cert taking you away if you're bad" card many times. I used to think there was a cert living on the top floor of our building and would freak out when my mom tried to take me up there. I grabbed onto the railing and wouldn't go up there.

Check out some of the pictures I got: