Friday, September 07, 2007

On becoming a "ruskaya mamichka"

One of the things that I have really enjoyed since living in St Petersburg is taking walks in the parks with Isaiah. This activity seems very popular among all the Russian mothers. Always however there have been several obvious differences between me and the Russian mothers, besides the fact that they can all talk to each other with ease. One thing immediately identified me as a foreigner: Isaiah was not bundled up as if prepared for weather in the movie Day After Tomorrow. That's right, this crazy American woman didn't even have a hat on her son's head! The horror! After receiving many scolding looks and even a few admonitions from both of our language teachers, I decided that it was finally time to submit to the cultural norm; besides, the weather really is getting chilly now.

Thomas and I headed off to the market the other day on the hunt for a fall coat for me and proper accessories for Isaiah. As in everything thus far, God directed us to just the right vendors. We were able to find everything that we were looking for. Here you see Isaiah sporting his new Russian hat. He has adjusted fairly well, and he doesn't even try to pull it off his head any more. We also found him some snazzy shoes for now and boots for colder weather.

So when I went to the park yesterday, I didn't receive any scolding looks, but I'm sure that they will begin again soon, because I don't have Isaiah in a snow suit in 50 degree weather. :)


js said...

Too funny! They put hats on the babies in Africa when they don't really need them. I never did ask if it was for some other reason besides keeping them warm. Sometimes they do funny things just for show. :)

I think he looks adorable by the way!

Pam said...

Your story reminded me of a time long ago when I took my newborn baby girl of 3 1/2 weeks old to the grocery store in the month of February. I was told I should never take my baby out of the house until she was at least 6 months old. I was also informed on the proper way to dress a baby in the "dead of winter"!

Victor said...

It is intersting to read about your family experience in Russia,
I usualy read posts on tominthebox blog and sometimes on this blog,
I was born in Ukraine and raised till about 16, but my whole father's family came from Siberia.
Now I live in the States.
Vsego horoshego,
S Bogom,
Yspehov v izychenii russkogo yazika.

Grace said...

Hee, he's so cute!

Somehow that reminds me of a story my mom had about bundling up baby Becca (I think) and putting her on the front porch to take a nap in the cold winter air. My crazy Canadian mom. Until my sweet southern grandmother asked, "What in the world are you doing?" and she realized, "Oh yeah. I guess this is kind of strange!"

Robin Harris (ICE Coordinator) said...

You're such a great "Russkaya mamichka"! I especially appreciate your good attitude when the babushki around you have such strong opinions on how to raise kids. I really do admire you for that!