December 15, 2012
Tis the season for pumpkin bread
That was a lot of Chinese!
What happens when an American family hosts 5 Japanese, 4 Koreans and a Chinese teacher all the while using the Chinese language to communicate? Lots of fun! Last night, we hosted M’Lynn’s classmates to our apartment for a small Christmas party. The plan was to show them how to bake the pumpkin bread that M’Lynn had brought to class earlier in the semester.
Immediately upon arrival, our guests offered bags of gifts and presents for the boys. They received candy from Japan, a huge bag of cookies and more candy--even miniature candy canes! On top of that, they brought bag after bag of food including Doritos, orange juice, wine, snacks, and strawberry pudding Jello. I bet there was over 600 RMB of gifts brought and shared by all. Before this party, I really didn't know just how much the Eastern cultures love to show appreciation through gifts.
As we were all standing around the dining room table watching M’Lynn explain how to make pumpkin bread, some wanted to smell and taste the spices. Cinnamon was a familiar spice, but no one was quite sure about nutmeg. A Korean guy just had to taste it. Judging from his reaction, nutmeg doesn't taste so good by itself. We also served deviled eggs and the paprika on top was a big hit. Then, M’Lynn had to explain how to make deviled eggs. Since she didn't do any research ahead of time on that one, she was thankful the Koreans knew words like “pickle” and “mustard” and “paprika.”
The magic moment came when the cake was mixed, poured into the bunt pan, and then placed in the oven. Seconds later, M’Lynn returned from the kitchen and the cake was magically baked and ready to eat prompting surprised and excited “oohs and ahhs” from the audience. Such a great made for TV cooking show!
After the baking extravaganza, we all sat around enjoying the ambiance of the twinkling lights of the Christmas tree and listening to Christmas music. One girl really enjoyed relaxing on the couch. “My dorm room doesn't have one.” We assured her that she could come to our place anytime she’d like to sit on our couch. While watching Corbin sit in the middle of the room reveling in the spotlight, one guy said “I want to get married!” I assured him he’d find the right girl in time.
I love how much other people love our kids! Watching the boys have such a great time playing with our new friends was such a blessing. “Can I keep him?” a Japanese girl asked while holding Corbin. We responded that she could have him for a week. But, when they were all on the way out the door, Corbin thought it would be better to stay at home. (the conversation about her taking him for a week was in Chinese, but I think Corbin understood…)