autumn in mommy’s kitchen

autumn has always been my favorite season. even though it is an introduction to cold & dark winter (which i don’t like at all), i tend to enjoy those reddish shades of trees, the cold breeze and (i have to admit) even the rain.
well, my birthday is also in autumn (i’m a november baby!), so that adds to autumn celebration.

oh, and another thing.. i love the food in autumn! all the fruits and vegetables we were craving for in spring and summer are finally here. back in the days when i was little, my mother would prepare fruit jams, so we would get the taste of summer even during the winter months. during those days, that cosy and welcoming fragrance would be all around our house.

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this is a picture of my mommy’s kitchen, my all-time-favorite place, especially when there’s arrival of fresh vegetables from my uncle’s garden. as you may see in the above photo, there are all kinds of veggies here – you name it, we’ve got it: peppers, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, spinach, beans, and so on.
it goes without saying, it’s all organic (i don’t wanna put a label on it – but my uncle is the one who prefers growing his veggies that way).

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of course, my mom has immediately started to prepare some tasty meals using these veggies -> spinach pie, fried peppers, corn and creamy soups.

oh, and while she was in the mood, she made some cookies.. which are to be accompanied by a cup of coffee or warm tea.

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after she sent me several photos, i insisted upon receiving more of them. i wanted to see what else she managed to cook and also i love the way she decorates the food. i was trying to convince her to start her own cooking blog, but i guess i wasn’t persistent enough.

so, what do you think? should i try to convince to pursue the “cooking blog” idea (with my help, of course)? i think it would be nice to see some of the typical bosnian dishes – with the twist, which she often adds – using different and sometimes unusual spices (at least for that corner of the world).

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dragons rush in

“tell me, how does the world see us? as savages?” asked darko.
“no,” i said, “i actually think the problem is that the world doesn’t see you at all”.
— bill carter, “fools rush in”

sarajevo, 1993. bill carter, a young american, decides to come to bosnia and herzegovina to join a small group of volunteers who are trying to help people who UN cannot reach. while living in sarajevo, he managed to get in touch with locals and got to know what was hiding behind those tired and pale faces. always wanting to help more, he finally managed to draw the world’s attention to this corner of the world by getting in touch with one of the greatest rock bands ever – U2. the outcome were his documentary and a U2 song “miss sarajevo”, as well as his book “fools rush in”, which i’m currently reading.

i’m still not finished with it; after reading something similar to i’ve written above, it gets quite difficult to continue. even though i was a child during the war, and i wasn’t able to comprehend everything, all those feelings came back, rushing.. how scared we were.. how helpless we felt.. but how hopeful we were, in a vain hope that someone will hear us and come help us.

oh, and the other thing which really got to me – how the foreigners found bosnia and herzegovina so beautiful.. her high mountains, green rivers and lovely little towns. and i could only think of all those places back home and felt extremely nostalgic.

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twenty years later, football team of bosnia and herzegovina (widely known as “dragons”) managed to qualify for the world cup in brasil, after being eliminated in the play-offs four years earlier.

tonight we will have our first match in the world cup in history, and we will fight argentina. as much as i am proud to see our boys together with one of the greatest teams of this year’s tournament, i have to admit i am really really nervous!

what i find amazing is the fact that major part of these football players have double-citizenship, given that most of them grew up elsewhere due to the war, but still they chose to play for our bosnia and herzegovina.

one thing is sure though, tonight the world will finally see us for who we really are.

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so, go dragons (of bosnia)! make us proud!
and please keep in mind that no matter what happens tonight, you are the reason we feel proud to be bosnians!

museum collection of bosnian yewelry

my homeland is told to be a point where east meets west and where these influences blend in the most beautiful way.

bosnia has been on the crossroads of empires ever since its foundation. roman empire was divided into western empire and eastern – byzantine empire with bosnia as it’s division point. later, bosnia was the westernmost point of ottoman empire, as well as the eastern region of the austro-hungarian empire.

however, the most prosperous period of bosnian history is the middle ages. bosnia was first mentioned as an independent state in 12th century, with its first ruler ban borić. ban was a title usred in that period, meaning “lord, master, ruler”. the second ban, ban kulin, is the most famous and controversial one, since its rule marked the start of a controversy with the bosnian church. bosnian church, or crkva bosanska, is indigenous branch of bogomils, considered as heretical by both roman catholic and eastern orthodox churches. from the 13th century bosnia was ruled by kotromanic dynasty.

middle ages is a birth time of most of the bosnian symbols: bosanski ljiljan – endemic lilies, stećci – tombstones, bosančica – medieval alphabet belonging to bosnian church. and with this i will open a new section in this blog – bosnian beauty – where i will try to present my homeland, its history, heritage, customs and natural beauty.

the first bosnian beauty i’m going to write about is the ancient and medieval bosnian jewelry. right now it is kept in the national museum in sarajevo. however, recently there was a campaign led by local jeweler sead sofić and the national museum to create replica of some of ancient and medieval jewelry. the result is this beautiful museum collection of jewelrey. all the items in the museum collection of jewelry are crafted very carefully, made of the same materials as the originals found in the various location all over bosnia. among the pieces there are rings and fibulae from the iron age, bracelets and earrings for the middle ages, as well as the pieces from the ottoman period.

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as of november 2nd last year i’m a proud owner of one of the pieces from this collection. this beautiful bronze fibula, replica of prehistoric one, is a birthday present from my in-laws.

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ps. for more info visit the yeweler’s website: http://www.zlatarsofic.com, as well as his facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sofi%C4%87-S/129969217059591