Thursday, December 17, 2009

Graduation! Class 177

Last Day of Class

Baby Doll

Saturday, November 7, 2009

And what will be their guillotine?

John Maynard-Keynes--a 20th century British economist--once remarked that we have a strong penchant for organizing our present lives according to the defunct vision of some long dead economist (which is ironic, I know).

It is shameful, really, this neo-mercantilism shrouded in capitalistic, free market rhetoric. And all the while, I can hear them saying of our complaints, 'Let them eat brioche.'

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Friday, October 9, 2009

Poached Pears

My wonderful parents came to see us last weekend. So delightful! They were my food critics. Creamy carrot soup, poached pears and a salad...I was going to be graded on these items the very next day.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Climate Change Coordinator

Last mention of the UN internship, I was preparing for the impending interview. Hours after the interview, I was offered the position of Climate Change Coordinator for the World Federation of United Nations Associations (WFUNA)!

My first day on the job was quite an overwhelming experience. It is a very demanding and fast-paced environment. This is the very challenged I have needed.

On any given moment, it is normal to listen to persons communicating in ten different languages and about subjects in which I have such acute interest. It is exciting to have almost full access to UN meetings and conferences, and the persons whom I meet are fascinating and knowledgeable characters. One day, I was asked to hand-deliver a letter to Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon--when I arrived at his office, however, I only got as far as his guard at the reception desk.

I survived the first two weeks, and now (after considerable research) I feel that I have an adequate handle on the subject and the direction in which the office needs to be headed regarding climate change.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Day After...

So...there's an ice pack on my swollen eyes. We worked for 15 hours on the menu below.

I got up today, rewarmed some of last night's menu (gourmet left-overs are just some of the perks to being a culinary arts student), ate, and went right back to bed!

It was a wonderful, demanding experience--I was literally shaking a good portion of the time. I will be ready to do this again in maybe 2 years. (hehe)

First Time as a Line Chef!

We cooked for 100 guests.
The menu:

Parsley Geleé with Chilled Tomato Water

Winter Squash Tasting

Farro, Beet Tartar, Herbs,
Bitter and Tender Greens, Lime Curry,
Roated garlic sauce

Saffron Pears, Rosemary Infused Ice Cream,
Molasses Cookie Dust

Saturday, August 29, 2009

WFUNA  - World Federation of United Nations Associations
a people's movement for the united nations

I have an interview this Monday (31 August) at 1 United Nations Plaza, 12pm, for an internship.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Every place I have traveled, I have seen each nation's war heroes immortalized in their frozen statues, their unflinching gazes--equal in their bucolic and sophisticated settings.

From parks to plazas, history books to oral legends ('I cannot tell a lie; It was I who chopped down the cherry tree')--we want to believe that the warriors of our history were more noble, wise, and good--that they were some how more justified in shedding blood than their adversaries.

Whether victor of victim, the defeating one or the defeated, each tribe elevates their soldiers to the status of infallible demagogue.

But what makes us so certain that we have the right story?

As Mr Orwell observed: Who controls the past controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past.

At times, the heroes whom we honor and esteem so highly make us destined to repeat what made them so noble. Would that we honor a hero who, instead of wielding sword and might army, allowed himself to be run through so that killing--in whatever way and under which ever cause--would finally be put to death!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Thursday, August 13, 2009

New York

jazz, cheese, and awaiting a thunderstorm...

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


I have been thinking long on this subject, and I am ready to state my conclusion:

Any act of violence done to any one at any time or place cannot be the way of Jesus no matter how inevitable or justifiable a person, authority, or nation may claim it to be.

Crucifixion Sketch, Nathan Simpson, 1991 (oil on canvas).

'...They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore.' — Isaiah 2.4

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Monday, August 3, 2009

Mosaic: Library Floor

I think Corissa and Nathy would agree that this might be the first and last mosaic we will do for a while. We are pleased with the results, but it seemed never-ending! I hope the children enjoy it...

Monday, July 6, 2009

We came across this documentary recently. France has done it again...bravo! (such as our French car seen in the photo to your right)

On June 5, 2009, this film was simultaneously released around the world in over 180 countries, in several different languages, and has been published for free on YouTube (in full length). The images display the extraordinary beauty of our planet as well as the widespread devastation we humans have managed to cause in a very short period of time (if we cannot create like the gods, surely we can destroy like gods! E. Becker, The Denial of Death, 1973: 85).

Both the images and the music create a deep sense of awe and humility.

The documentary makes a compelling argument: we have reached a point that is beyond pessimism. We must work in solidarity with a creative sense of urgency and in such a way that is intelligent and selfless.

Please, take the time to share with us your thoughts.

moderation, intelligence and sharing...(HOME)

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Our Image of Madonna and Child

Gourmet Eucharist: Our Musings on the Kingdom

This year in Chile, we have been reflecting on what we are calling the 'Gourmet Eucharist'. This idea came from a discussion we were having about how disappointing our current practice of Holy Communion has become. Most times, we spend five minutes or so in personal, quiet reflection while we partake in our single-serving wafer and grape juice. More often than not, the bread is reminiscent of a thin slice of styrofoam, and the juice (we dare not use wine) consumed invokes that same shivering reaction that we used to get when we had to take a spoonful of grape cough syrup when we were children.

It seems so poor, so pathetic, so vacant of the rich meaning with which it was imbibed from the beginning.

Jesus said, 'As often as you take from this bread and drink from this cup, remember me'. At our house, we regularly eat bread and drink wine. So, we thought, why not pause at every meal wherein bread and wine are present and remember the significance that Jesus infused these otherwise banal and meaningless products? And why not invite others to participate with us? The Eucharist (which is another fancy way of saying 'Holy Communion') has become gourmet to us; not only physically, but socially and spiritually.

It is the breaking of bread and the sharing of wine in the name of Christ. The Gourmet Eucharist is the idea that at the table of Christ all are welcome, especially the marginalized, the most needy, the excluded, the poor. He prepares this table among us, in us, and through us. And he calls us to be intentional in announcing the Host's invitation (Luke 14).

What we find particularly compelling is that the mystical significance found in the Eucharist is it has the potential of being a profoundly economic act. (Yoder)

Around the table of the Christ all are welcome.

Deuteronomy 15.4 there was a promise that was to be fulfilled by living it out. God's statement is striking: 'There will be no poor among you, for the Lord God will bless you in the land which he gives you for an inheritance to possess'. There will be no poor among you...

No poor. No one going hungry. No person being left out...all are invited to share in God's impartial goodness.

Later, Luke reflects on this passage and sees the dynamic of the new, eucharist community created by Jesus. He says in Acts 4.34 that 'there was not needy person among them for as many as were possessors of lands' gave and distributed to those in need.

I find it interesting that both texts talk about possessing land--God promised it in the former, and it was realized in the latter. We talk about the right to land, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. I'm not so sure how much of a right we have to these so much as they are blessings given to us from God (and there is a subtle distinction worthy of noting). God blesses with the expectation that we would become his blessing to others. What we have comes to us not because of our right to possess them, but because he has promised to bless us. And, so it seems, he does so in order that we would learn from his generosity and begin to imitate him.

Land meant food production, which is the source of our gathering around the table. It would seem that God's purpose was for us to share the good that the Lord has blessed us with by giving to those who have nothing.

This is the essence of the Eucharist: we are blessed with the body of Christ (represented in the bread) to become the Body of Christ. In short, to look as Jesus did in the world today. And the wine--it represents his blood, this goes without saying. However, it goes much deeper. The wine represents his grace--abundant, rich, flowing over us--fully expressed in his cleansing, forgiving blood.

We partake in order to become. we receive God's grace through the blood of Jesus and we somehow become his Grace extended to others.

This is what Jesus came to make possible for us.

We break our bread, we give our wine and there's still more for everyone. There will be no poor among you. And there was not a needy person among them.

...the Gourmet Eucharist.

May your tables be full of his grace and may those most in need find that they are welcome to dine with you.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Smarter and Less Greedy

The aroma of our coffee is now permeating the homes of friends, a prominent film director, and the CEO of a music label. All of them are raving about it--we've sold around 20 bags. If you haven't viewed the link that explains the origin of our green coffee, please watch it (the BBC bit)!

What interests us most about our beans is the production process:

Oftentimes, the globalization of capitalism can exploit those who are on the bottom of the production chain--in this case, the farmers. Our distributors, however, work directly with smaller farms that are family owned and ensure that they receive a worthy pay for their harvest. This is an example of how globalization of capitalism can have a positive impact--we just have to be smarter and less greedy about it.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Green Planet

...a 4 year old seems to innately get it.

Monday, June 8, 2009

6 Bags (and two fish)

Our first 6 bags of coffee ready to be sold! The profit will go to buying the roaster we need for Egypt. It's cost: around $15,000. We have to sell 2,143 bags of coffee, minus 6; far less than 5,000. I wish you could order from us....

Sunday, June 7, 2009

On A Tragic Note...

The photograph taken of us by my brother was here, in Chile--sadly, when he returned to the spot a few weeks ago, the enchanting house had collapsed!

Our Beautiful Domes

After much uncertainty about whether or not our order would actually arrive--would we have to pay taxes, would they even be let into the country?--we have green coffee beans: Specialty, Organic, Fair Trade. Directly from Cusco, Peru.
You must watch BBC's note on this company and its farmers:


...and so we have begun.