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  • When the risk love wanes, I suggest Settlers of Catan as a great board game. Shorter games with trading…..

  • I has Tsubo Kirs! (Okay, only when they get here from Zappo’s.)

  • Having grown up working in retail (aka on my feet all day) I can say that there is nothing quite like a really comfortable shoe–though I still love the “less comfortable but really cute” ones for occaisions when I’m not walking as much.

  • Pray tell, where were the shoes on sale?

  • When done with Risk, there is always Axis & Allies, Stratego and on another front my fav Acquisitions. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • lol! I’d love a shoe with a bubbly sole besides crocs!

  • Thanks for sharing your trip with us, I am quite enjoying your take on it!
    It is good that you survived your own “siege” and were able to retreat for cookies after ๐Ÿ™‚

  • When once I played at Risk, there was a saying…’who rules Madagascar, rules the world’. I am not so sure…and I hardly ever won.

  • Ah, Risk. I am always capitulating and leaving to get a cookie! My family is so competitive. I just want a desert isle and an umbrella drink.

  • I had never heard of Tsubo but now I must try them. I too have a sister with smallish feet named Buffy; they just don’t get it.

  • I can second Axis and Allies. I love the MIT rules variant, though I normally just play the basic rules (and I’m always Japan).

  • I see you too are experiencing the thing known as “Sons who will soon be as tall as Mommy.” I might start wearing shoes with heels, just to keep a tiny advantage.
    I love the crazy way Pushkin spells his name!

  • To build on your memories of St. Petersburg, read “The Madonnas of Leningrad” by Debra Dean. Takes place mainly in the Hermitage Museum, fascinating story.

  • Love the shoes and thanks for the link.

  • My teenage daughter has been hiding my shoes – all in the Koti genus – and telling me the “Ugly Shoe Troll” who lives under my bed has eaten them.

  • Love your trip.
    Love the shoes also.

  • memories are made of this

  • RISK! Didn’t know people still played that! That was THE game for all the guys – and a few girls with appropriate permission – to play during our years in high school (boarding school). Vicious, those guys were!
    I watch RT (Russia Today) from satellite and they’ve been doing a series of reports on events surrounding the war. Enlightening, told from their point of view … they haven’t gotten to the Siege yet and maybe they won’t – simply for the reason given by your guide.

  • The secret to playing Risk: You don’t care! So, you go after everyone!
    My husband rec’d Risk for Christmas the year I went to meet his family (pre-wedding). DH & his brother insisted “you have to have 3 to play”. I went on the offensive and before you know it, I’d wiped the board with his brother and DH was down to 6 armies when he surrendered. (It was better than being wiped out completely by a “girl”.)
    Best of all: I was never again asked to play Risk! ๐Ÿ™‚
    Enjoy your trip! It’s a joy to share it with you.

  • As a fellow size 10 shoe I am too familiar with the smaller shoes look cuter phenomenon. Alas!
    But I like those shoes big or small and will get some.

  • Haunting story, that of the seige of Leningrad…
    Russia has such a rich history; I’m really enjoying the pics, especally those with you/the fambly. Thanks so much.

  • Hang on to Brazil. And start working on your Portuguese.

  • The small footed sisters just don’t get it. They’ve had a lifetime of choosing between several options. Those of us with a firmer grip on the world know you gotta celebrate when you find something that fits and is on sale.
    (The last pair of shoes my sister said I was stupid to buy are still going strong several years later)

  • If your family likes games, I also suggest “Settlers of Catan”. You can get it at your local game/hobby store or Amazon. It is really fun and a good combination of skill and luck. The best part is that it comes in pieces that you put together, so it is a little different each time. It is confusing at first, but stick with it, or invite someone over that knows how to play. I set it up on a large round x-mas tree tray that fits the game perfectly. That way when it runs longer, we can move it out of the way until the next night. This has been the summer of Uno at our house. My eight year old loves it.

  • Dang, those are some cute shoes.

  • The siege memorial is one of the things about St. Petersburg that stands out in my mind, too (our hotel was just across the street). Your travelogue brings back all sorts of memories. Thanks!

  • As a small footed person, I need to insist that it seems great to have tiny feet until you realize that most adult shoes are not made small enough for you. At least you can buy Tsubos, while I may be forced into kid’s tennis shoes (bright pink sneakers with velcro are just not acceptable past a certain age).
    I yearn for bigger feet — I wouldn’t mind having to knit bigger socks in exchange.

  • I’m enjoying reading about your travels and also agree The Modonnas of Leningrad is worthwhile reading. Add to that City of Thieves…..

  • You should check out Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History podcast. He just did a three part series on the Ostfront and talks a lot about the siege and the battle and all that stuff. Which is normally not that interesting to me, but he really makes it worth your while!

  • Risk is great fun.

  • I clicked the link for the Tsubos (thanks for facilitating the satisfaction of my curiosity), and I think they’re super cute. (comfort is the most beautiful shoe characteristic in my book). But “grapemilk” as a color? That’s just strange.