Coffee Across Asia
Why acoffeewithfriends? What are Marc and Ann doing now? The reason is that “a Coffee with Friends” reminds us of the intimate conversations we’ve had over the years with friends and family. The times of laughter and tears. It brings excitement for the new friendships that will come our way. It also reminds us of the travels throughout Asia and America. This is part 1 of the coffee series.
Today we want to give you a tour. Let our beautiful memories of coffee shops throughout Asia take you and your tastebuds to quaint coffeeshops hidden in the corners of Asia.
First Stop: China
What could be better than home grown processed coffee in the hills of China by the Hani people. Their coffee is bold, smooth, and rich.
Second stop: Vietnam. In Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City Vietnam you can always find the hustling loud coffee shop as early as 5 AM. Coffee slowly prepared at your table and some of the strongest boldest coffee we have ever tasted. Throw in the sweetened condensed milk and you will burst with energy.
Third Stop: Thailand. In the hills of Chiang Mai, I stayed 2 months for the birth of my first baby. What kept us going? Stopping at the Doi Chaang Coffee Shop. This smooth cup has a natural mocha flavor.
Finally, back to our hometown: In Khmer language of Cambodia one would say “cafe duck da koo duck khak” or iced coffee with sweetened condensed milk. Delicious coffee served on the side of every road for less than a buck!
Tell us of your coffee journeys in your part of the world!
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I had 4 babies without needing much of anything. The change from my Western cultural worldview came fifteen years ago when I helped deliver a baby in a refugee camp. She had absolutely nothing. Not a diaper, no clothes, only a cloth to wrap him in. I watched this family over the next year to find that they were happy and healthy. This went against all I learned in nursing school and from simply being an American! So, I was challenged. I made a list of the few essentials and decided to go minimalist delivery and mom. Here is what I thought was essential:
1. Diapers until 1 year then only at night.
2. Three sets of newborn clothes and only 3 sets at each stage.
4. A car seat
My parents made me do it!!
After natural deliveries, each of my 4 newborns slept with me and my husband and nursed until they were two. All of my children slept in the same room, never had a crib or play pen and are healthy kids today. Why do I share this with you today? Because this was how most of Asia was raising their babies and I want to free you from the “I’ve gotta have it” trap! Raise them with the basics. Keep it simple. You will have less stress and find the simpler is better. Share your steps towards minimalism with us!
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As we’ve lived in Asia, some of the greatest experiences is learning from the people. As Americans, we often think we have all the knowledge. I have come to realize that true knowledge comes from understanding our Creator and learning from those who have experienced life more than from textbooks (or blogs:)
This past year, we lived near the Bunong hill tribe people. These are a people that by world standards hold no knowledge, are illiterate, uneducated, and poor. But, they have knowledge and wisdom near extinction. They are gradually integrating their ways into the Khmer culture surrounding them. But here are some interesting things we have learned from these new friends.
2. Bamboo can be used to cook food over a fire or to make a cup to drink from.
3. Elephants that are loved never need to be chained because they will always return to their family who raised them. (This also solves the problem of feeding a large elephant but your neighbor’s garden should be protected!)
4. Land is to be shared and cultivated as a community and boundaries cause battles.
5. Immorality effects the whole community not just the individual.
6. The Creator gave us resources to use in moderation but greed destroys man.
What a privilege to know these people and the many things we have learned from them. I challenge you today to get to know people from other cultures, religions, and economic levels. Ask them questions. Let their experiences speak into you. Please share knowledge you have gained from others that was unexpected. Check out our website for more!