4 day visit home!

I took a quick visit home over Christmas. 4 days and a few hours to be exact!  

The flights from Korea to America went great! (NyQuil especially helped) I arrived in Dallas, got a shower and ate some breakfast (bacon). I then spent 5 quality hours at the airport due to snow. I'm so glad the airports have Starbucks! Dave picked me up at the airport and we visited his family and then mine. My parents knew I was coming home but not my sister and granny. They were COMPLETELY SURPRISED, which was great! 

Living abroad is great but I do miss some foods from home. While in Kansas I had: filet mignon wrapped in bacon (steak is a Christmas tradition with Dave's family and they saved me one), green bean casserole, mashed potatoes, mexican food (twice), bacon, sausage, more bacon, quiche, avacodoes, guacamole, chick-fil-A, and I even managed to buy limes and bring them back to Korea! It was a great food fix! I did notice that portions in America are HUGE and I couldn't eat all my meals. 

More importantly than food I got to spend time with family and friends. I didn't take any pictures with my family, I have no good excuse as to why either =(. I tried to spend the majority of my time with Dave, his Mom, my parents, and my sister. Words can't begin to describe how great it was to see everyone and I am so thankful I got to.

Here are few highlights from my trip:

Dave and I got to take pictures together! We had a good time and were thankful our friend was willing to capture these for us! 

 I got to meet Willow! Willow is one of my best friend's, Shenel's baby. I threw a baby shower for her but missed the birth by a few days! It was great to meet her. 
 Dave and I brought Jeremy, Shenel and their family some gifts. Hunter was especially excited about his aquarium lamp. He hugged it numerous times! 
I love that Hunter is attacking Trapper's head in this picture =)

Shenel, Willow & I
I had a great lunch and visit with my work spouse Kirsten! 
 I visited Alisha's Mom and doggy for a bit too! 
I surprised Ernie with a visit at the Y! It was awesome! 
 And last but certainly not least! I got to see my kitty and spoil him with mounds of treats! He looks thrilled right? 


Kimchi with the Kindys

Kimchi? How do you even pronounce that stuff? =) It's like the name Kim and then chee as in cheek. KIM-CHEE. What is it? Well, that's a good question. It basically is fermented cabbage with spices. If made correctly it's the bomb.com. However, there are some forms of kimchi that resemble throw up (I know, TMI). However, It is one of the world's top ten healthiest foods. Koreans eat it with every meal along with a bowl of rice. Before you crinkle your nose you should know Koreans are overall much much healthier than we are. (Kimchi > Big Mac).... just saying. 

Here is what Health.com reports about kimchi: "Why to try it: Kimchi (or kimchee) is loaded with vitamins A, B, and C, but its biggest benefit may be in its “healthy bacteria” called lactobacilli, found in fermented foods like kimchi and yogurt. This good bacteria helps with digestion, plus it seems to help stop and even prevent yeast infections, according to a recent study. And more good news: Some studies show fermented cabbage has compounds that may prevent the growth of cancer."

Winter is kimchi making season in Korea. Families often get together for a big family gathering and make kimchi. It's almost like a holiday for them. Sometimes when they get together they make enough kimchi for the year! holy kimchi! That's a lot. 

This December, our school let us know that we would be making kimchi! I was rather excited as I had been wanting to learn how to make fresh kimchi. My Korean kids LOVED, and I mean LOVED making kimchi! It was so neat to see their excitement! My Brazilian student … well he was excited when he got the salted cabbage. Then they pulled out the hot spices to rub on the kimchi and he went from excited to … well the pictures will speak for themselves =)

Kimchi is quiet a fun process. If you want to learn more on what spices you will need and detailed step by step click here.

Step 1: Salt your cabbage 
Step 2: Rub kimchi spices on the cabbage
Step 3: Put in pot to ferment or eat it fresh. 
Here are some of the pictures of my kids during the process.

I love Pedro's facial expressions as the kimchi making progresses. He definitely isn't Korean. 

I thought this kimchi was pretty good. They gave us some to bring home but I don't think we did. Kimchi has a way of permeating your whole house with it's smell. However, it was fun to make kimchi with the little kindys. I loved seeing how much they enjoyed their kimchi. 

So - would you try kimchi? Have you ever heard of it?