Home is where the heart is… so what’s your heart?

So, today I’m having a bit of an impromptu party for some friends and their kids.  It’s one of those not quite planned things where you issue an invite on Facebook that you don’t expect anyone to respond to and they do.  One of my dear friends said she was amazed how open my home always is to people coming for visits.  I’d been having a similar conversation lately with some family.  I think there are different kinds of people out there, when it comes to entertaining and having people over.

You have the Perfection Patrol.  You know, the ones who go out and buy those green squiggly twisty plants and put three of them in an empty glass cube.  Then they do that whole minimalist, looks amazing, straight off TV, fine dining menu.  They get everything just right in surroundings, but sometimes people find themselves uncomfortable because people are perfect, KWIM.  I see this alot on Come Dine With Me (fun show where people get together and have dinner parties to see who scores the highest).  The nicest, high-brow surroundings don’t make the most fun party.

You also have the folks, more like me, who just figure if I do what I like, then people I invite will like it too.  I’m all low maintenance, throw a few things together, and spend the time visiting, not creating perfection.  The nice things about this approach are that I don’t spend time worrying about whether my house is perfect, the surroundings are perfect or any of that.  Also, I can entertain anytime.  I’m not mentally stressed about it, so I can make people comfortable.

And what I’ve found is that if I’m comfortable, others will be also.  There will be some who are expecting fancy fine dining (although you’d think that if they know me and have never seen me out of a pair of crocs they wouldn’t) and they probably won’t come back.  But, on the whole when you’re happy with yourself and your entertaining, others will be as well in my experience.

Since moving to Jordan, I entertain way more than I did in the US.  Partly this is because my network of friends is much larger.  Partly it’s because my kids are old enough to want to have their friends over.  And partly, it’s because here in Jordan, my heart is with people… my friends, the Bean-in-laws, all of them.  So, home is where my heart is, and it’s with having wonderful people come and go in our house and in our lives.  Even when great people exit our lives, I’m happy, because at least we got to have them with us for some time.  So, if you’re feeling bored and want some low-key entertaining, drop by the BeanPod… we’re always open and always having fun!

Happy Martha Stewart Wannabe’s!


10 thoughts on “Home is where the heart is… so what’s your heart?

  1. Thanks for a lovely afternoon! I was so comfortable at your house, I almost pulled an Auntie Bean and pulled up a couch for a nap after lunch. Very fun, thanks for your open home!

    • Veggie tray, cheese and crackers, fruit tray… whatever I have around the house. Nothing special or fancy, literally. Just normal everyday items that are good and fun.

  2. Speaking of fruits, compare if you will the wonderful bounty we find in Jordan right now with all the summer fruits upon us with the fruits one finds in the USA. If the cakes in Jordan taste like cardboard, fruits in US Supermarkets are not that much better unfortunately and they charge mucho dinero per pound.

    • Joe, sorry we’re going to have to agree to disagree on this one. I’d love to find a decent berry in this country. Blueberries, raspberries, blackberries. All are found in abundance in the US just now at reasonable prices. Add to that grapes (seedless green), and cherries. We’re getting both just now, but they look mediocre and cost a small fortune. Sigh. The strawberries have gone up, but not by too much, but again are looking a bit glum when you can find them. Really, the only fruit that I see as wonderful bounty here is watermelon and they haven’t been tasting super this year. So, I’m not feeling you on the fruits. I seriously miss abundant fruits that the Beans love. Oh, but I should go on record and admit that i also like the US’ tasteless cucumbers more than the tast-ful Jordanian ones. So, don’t trust MY taste buds, teehee, at least on veggies.

  3. Allow me to steer you towards yummy ultra sweet and juicy fruits. Either in downtown Amman central farmers market or in east Amman you will find street vendors selling some delicious fare. Strawberries in downtown, best quality and cheapest price. Berries (blue & white) also in downtown. Cantaloupes, peaches (regular & flat), apricots, grapes (not seedless) & soon figs. Cherries have a very short season so you won’t find them for more than two weeks when they are in prime condition. Now is too early to buy cherries. The cantaloupes, peaches, and apricots I’ve had so far are heavenly. Cheap and so naturally sweet. Never had them so good in the USA.

    • Joe, yeah, I don’t go downtown or to East Amman often. Frankly, I just shop at the 2 major stores for convenience. As for the berries, I seriously doubt the blueberries we’re talking about are the same thing ;). The Beans have been enjoying the apricots and such. But, you know, I’m originally from peach country, so the peaches here aren’t nearly as good as back home. Even El 3atal, raised on jordan peaches, admits that our good Chilton County peaches are the best… Picked fresh and such. Of course, I’m not a fan of peaches, apricots, or nectarines (or canteloupe for that matter). When we first moved to Amman, cherries were cheap and readily available for like 6-7 months. In the last 3 years, they’ve been expensive and almost never available. As far as I can see, they havent HAD a season. Sigh. So, fruits are plentiful if you like the fruits they have here, but not if you like weird fruits like me ;).

  4. Maybe I should be grateful that you, a typical American, don’t much care for the local fruit variety which is probably something you have in common with the American GIs serving in Iraq. Otherwise, all this wonderful variety of fruit would be on its way to Iraq (maybe that’s where you’ll find the cherries) and we’ll end up with below average produce. Supermarkets in west Amman don’t offer best quality fruit & veg while charging a premium. The only one where I find good quality (also expensive) produce is Yasser Mall in Wadi Seer, five-minute drive past 8th circle.

    • Joe, I didn’t even think that all my cherries were going to Iraq. Wow, interesting thought that… But, anything they bring out of there is bound to end up at a premium… I know that both quality and price suffer at the major markets, but given that I have to hit two every week anyway, I can’t justify adding in a third stop. No time and no interest. Did I mention how much I’ve always hated to shop… Sigh.

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