Wednesday, January 15, 2014

We're Back!

After three weeks of travel, we are finally home! My little family spent over two weeks in Colorado enjoying loads of family time. Last week, Michael went on to St. Louis for Intervarsity's national staff conference. I stayed in Colorado to avoid being in an empty home with my baby.

So much happened in those three weeks that I'm not even going to try to sum them up here! Instead, let me focus in on three discoveries I made over the last few weeks: a singer/songwriter, a book, and a recipe.

The singer/songwriter, Josh Garrels. His great lyrics, interesting instrumentation, and unusual voice have grabbed me. If you'd like a taste, check out the songs "Farther Along," "Pilot Me," and "Little Blue."

The book, Foreign to Familiar. The author describes the differences between hot climate cultures (relationship oriented, indirect communication, group oriented, etc.) and cold climate cultures (task oriented, direct communication, individual oriented, etc.)

For instance, if you walked into a hardware store in rural Georgia, a hot climate culture, and asked where the nails were, you'd be perceived as rude for not making small talk first. If you walked into a hardware store in Los Angeles, a cold climate culture, and started to ask the employee how they're doing and made a comment about the weather, you'd be perceived as annoying for wasting their time. I thought this book was a great, broad strokes guide to understanding cultural differences. And it's pretty short.

This super easy and really yummy crockpot chili recipe. Sometimes it's relaxing to cook a meal that requires attention to chopping, stirring, watching, and waiting. But, usually I prefer super easy cooking. This recipe is about as easy as it gets - the only work involved is chopping an onion, chopping celery, and dumping things in the crockpot. I had this chili at my brother's house on Friday night. It was the first thing I cooked when I came home on Sunday. Yum!

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