Friday, November 27, 2009

La Castanada= my first roasted chestnut!

Last week at school, we celebrated the coming of Autumn with La Castanada, or a chestnut festival. Every year the school celebrates autumn by having the kids recite autumn songs or poems. But instead of reciting them to the teachers, they have to recite them to the castaƱeras, or the chestnut harvesters. If they do a good job, the castaneras give the kids roasted chestnutes. The castaƱeras are usually mothers from school who want to help out and dress up like farmers. The kids had been practicing songs and poems in English and Spanish all week for the party. I had been working with all my classes on their English songs. I was really excited for the party Friday because I realized I had never eaten a roasted chestnut in my life! So on Friday afternoon, I went with all my classes to help with the songs and get my chestnuts! All of the kids did really well with the songs! I got my share of chestnuts and went to work on eating them. You can't eat a chestnut whole or it will be really gross, you have to peel it out of its shell which can be kind of difficult. After a lot of work and the kid's help, I got to eat my chestnuts and the were delish! It was cool to see a different way to celebrate Autumn. This week is Thanksgiving in the US and it will be weird to just have a normal Thursday. However, my house is planning a Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday! It will be a little different from traditional Thanksgiving because we have to improvise on some of the ingredients. But I am excited we will be doing something and I will be sure to post pictures of our Madrid Thanksgiving!

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