Monday, February 21, 2011

My AMERICAN * BAHAMIAN * NORWEGIAN Recipes


American Recipes



Sweet Cornbread

Description

Golden and sweet, cornbread
.
Ingredients

1
Cup
yellow corn meal
1
Cup
sifted flour
1⁄4
Cup
sugar
1⁄2
Teaspoon
salt
4
Teaspoon
baking powder
1 egg
1 cup milk
1/4 cup soft shortening (CRISCO)

Instructions & Special Notes:

Recipe Instructions 
Mix Dry ingredients 
Add:
1 egg
1 cup milk
1/4 cup soft shortening (Crisco)
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Grease one 8-inch square pan, or 8-inch cast iron skillet, or cast iron cornbread mold.
Place cornbread mix into bowl, mix thoroughly. Add egg, milk and shortening. Hand-beat until smooth, about one minute. DO NOT OVERBEAT!
Bake for 15 to 25 minutes for pan or skillet.



Bahamian Recipes






















Norwegian Recipes






YUMMY NORWEGIAN WAFFLES

2 CUPS FLOUR
1/2 - 3/4 CUPS SUGAR (OR LESS TO TASTE)
1 TEASPOONS - BAKING POWDER
2 TABLESPOONS - VANILLA SUGAR (U CAN FIND AT IKEA OR WHOLE FOODS)
2 EGGS, SEPERATED
1 3/4 CUPS WHOLE MILK
6 TABLESPOONS OF MELTED BUTTER
4 TABLESPOONS OF WHEAT GERM (CAN BE ADDED IF U LIKE)
BEAT THE EGG WHITES WITH AN ELECTRIC MIXER, SET ASIDE. BEAT EGG YOLKS AND STIR IN THE MILK. BEAT IN FLOUR, BAKING POWDER, VANILLA SUGAR, AND SUGAR. ADD THE MELTED BUTTER.
WHEN ALL COMBINED, FOLD IN THE BEATEN EGG WHITES.
SERVE WITH STRAWBERRY JAM AND SLICED MUNSTER CHEESE OR NORWEGIAN BROWN CHEESE.
*GREAT AND EASY RECIPE TO MAKE AHEAD OF TIME. STORE IN A SEALED CONTAINER IN THE REFRIGERATOR.
Submitted by: KRISTINA UNHJEM



Meat patties with gravy and creamed cabbage

Description
(Serves 4)
This dish is often known as “mother’s meat patties”. It used to be a point of pride for newly marred women to be able to make meat patties that were as good as mother made. Today young couples presumably share the cooking, but meat patties have lost none of their popularity.

Ingredients
Meat patties

500 g minced beef (1 lb beef round or chuck)

1 tsp salt

1 tsp freshly ground pepper

1 tsp ground ginger

1 tbsp potato flour

2.5 dl water

1 egg

Fat for frying (I fried mine in Coconut oil – a lot better for you & great for using w/ high heat)


Creamed cabbage
Approx. 1/2 kg garden cabbage (I used half of a medium cabbage)

Sauce:

2 tbsp butter

4 tbsp flour

4 dl milk (use heavy whipping cream or whole milk)

1/2 tsp nutmeg

Salt


Gravy

2 ½ tbsp butter

2 ½ tbsp flour

5 dl meat juices or stock (use beef stock if you don’t have enough meat juices from frying the patties)

Instructions

Meat patties

Mix the minced beef with the spices and potato flour, and add the water a little at a time. Stir in the lightly beaten egg. Shape fairly large patties and brown them on both sides. Place the meat

Patties in the gravy and let them simmer for 5- 10 minutes before serving.

Creamed cabbage

Cut the cabbage into small pieces of and cook for approx. 30 minutes in lightly salted water.

Melt the butter in a saucepan and stir in the flour.

Add the milk and bring to a boil, stirring all the time.

Let the sauce cook for 8 - 10 minutes.

Add the cooked cabbage, bring to a boil and add salt and nutmeg to taste.

Gravy

Brown the flour and butter well in a cast-iron pan (I used my regular big fry pan) over low heat. Stir constantly. Bring the meat juices or stock to the boil. Add to the browned mixture of butter and flour, and beat until smooth. Let the sauce cook for about 10 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. A touch of cream makes a good addition, but this is optional.

Notes

RECIPE FROM THE NORWEGIAN INFORMATION CENTRE FOR MEAT AND MEAT PRODUCTS

DON’T FORGET – lingonberries are a great with this dish and boiled potato’s (sprinkle with parsley).

* I doubled the recipe for the meat patties instead 1 lb I used 2 lbs and it came out great



The Little Unhjem CHEFS 




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Cross-country skiing - The perfect alternative outdoor activity for us.



At the moment our trails just in the back of our yard are in great condition, so we got out yesterday and enjoyed the beautiful day!


  
I was so proud of the boys - they did so great and are such naturals at cross-country skiing.  We hope to get out there tomorrow for some more fun.  It is currently snowing right now so we will have some fresh powder.




This is the perfect alternate outdoor activity for us.  It’s what active outdoor types do in winter around here. 


Will keep you posted on our next adventure.






http://www.allstaractivities.com/sports/cross%20country%20skiing/crosscountry-skiequipment.htm

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Barnehage - Dylan is so excited to finally start Barnehage in March.(some great information on what Friluftsbarnehager is)

Dylan is so excited to finally start Barnehage in March.


Friluftsbarnehager -  The barnehage is a 5-minute drive from us and can probably walk there in the spring/summer if we cut through the farms.


The Norwegian word barnehage describes different types of provision for children from
one to six years of age, such as day nurseries, kindergartens and pre-schools. They all
have an educational agenda.
The word Friluftsliv is more than simply outdoor activities or outdoor recreation. The main
motivation is the experience of nature, and the philosophy is to take care of the
environment.



Some great information I found to share with you - 



Children Playing in Nature 121
ChildrenPlaying in Nature
Karen MMarie Eid Kaarby
Introduction
In this paper, I want to focus on barnehager, which when in the wild environment, are
known as Friluftsbarnehager. Firstly, I will define the concept Friluftsbarnehage. Secondly
I will discuss the observation of children’s play out in wild environment and how nature
influences children’s play. Finally, I want to point out how nature influences the quality of
children’s play. 
The Norwegian word barnehage describes different types of provision for children from
one to six years of age, such as day nurseries, kindergartens and pre-schools. They all
have an educational agenda.
The word Friluftsliv is more than simply outdoor activities or outdoor recreation. The main
motivation is the experience of nature, and the philosophy is to take care of the
environment.
Friluftsbarnehager Outside iin tthe WWild EEnvironment
The Norwegian Ministry of the Environment currently focuses on  friluftsliv as a
recommended educational way of working in barnehager and schools (Parliament Report
nr. 39, 2000-2001). The arguments for this way of working are related to both ecology
and health. A child who learns to love the countryside will wish to preserve it. He or she
will understand the importance of biological diversity. It is also assumed that these
children will keep on using the outdoor environment for physical activities in their adult
life. The Framework Plan for Day-Care Institutions (Ministry of Children and Family Affairs,
1996) formulates objectives such as “developing positive attitudes and practical skills”
related to nature and outdoor activities. There is growing documentation stating that
increased physical activity, and particularly outdoor physical activity, can prevent diseases
related to modern lifestyles. 
During the last ten years, a large number of friluftsbarnehage have been established in
Scandinavia, particularly in Norway. In Norway, there is a loose National curriculum, a
framework, stating objectives and aims for educational work in  barnehager.
Friluftsbarnehager must follow this national curriculum and the general principles of
management of “barnehager”. They do this through mainly outdoor activities all day,
every day, year round. This motto from one  friluftsbarnehage shows their philosophy:
“Everything you can do indoors, you can do outdoors, but not the other way around.”
According to their programs, two different areas seem to be common. The first is122 Questions of Quality
developing knowledge about the environment and experience of nature. The second is to
focus physical activity and motor development by using nature as an arena for play
(Lysklett, 2003).
The researchers Borge  et al. (2003) presented three ideas underpining the
friluftsbarnehage. Firstly, they see them as a part of the strong bonds between nature and
Norwegians, and Norwegian’s tradition of preferring outdoor leisure activities. They
assume that parents want to give their children the opportunity to experience outdoor
activities and to develop positive attitudes to outdoor and wild environment. The second
idea is that of “a happy childhood.” They say that the majority of parents believe that
“happy children are children playing outdoor most of the day, irrespective of season and
weather.” (Borge et al., 2003:606) The last point is the parents’ option to choose this type
of barnehage for their child because of the increased number of these friluftsbarnehager.
Borge et al. (2003) estimate that about 5 per cent of all day-care children in Scandinavian
countries experience such outdoor life in friluftsbarnehager. 
Høyland (1999), supported by The Ministry of Children and Family Affairs, evaluated the
quality of  friluftsbarnehager, and her results show that wild environments and outdoor
life are positive arenas for learning. Friluftsbarnehager represent more flexibility. There
are more possibilities for physical activities, mastery experiences, knowledge about the
natural environment and environmental consciousness in these institutions.
Fjørtoft (2001) in her doctorate thesis documents that children develop better physical
skills when they are given opportunity for outdoor activities from an early age.
How ddoes tthe EEnvironment IInfluence CChildren’s PPlay?
According to a post-graduate thesis (Klepsvik 1995), staff in Fruluftsbarnehager reported
that children’s play is more creative, and they play better in the wild environment
compared to ordinary playgrounds. My main question is: How does the outdoor
environment influence children’s play? 
Fjørtoft (2001:111) notes that “the central concept guiding children’s examination of their
environment is that of “affordance’.” Gibson’s (1979) concept of  affordance was
developed to describe how compositions and layout of surfaces constitute what they
afford. The affordances of the environment are what the environment offers to the
children. Heft (1988) elaborated the concept of  affordances further and explained
environmental features as functions for play. Children perceive the functions of the
features in the environment, and they intuitively use them for physical challenges and
play. They perceive what the environment affords them. Heft (1988) argued that the
functional approach corresponds to the relationship of children to their environment.  TheChildren Playing in Nature 123
diversity of the outdoor environment gives the children a lot of possibilities. Different
features like cliffs and rocks, slopes and heights, and a mixture of woodland with a high
diversity in vegetation, all have a functional meaning for children. For example, a tree
with branches suitable for climbing will be perceived as climbable. If some of the
branches also are big enough to sit on, the tree can be perceived as both climbable and
as a base for social play. The tree therefore affords opportunities both for climbing and
playing. A key point made by Gibson (1979) is that  affordances correspond with each
individual; to the size of the body, strength, the skills, courage and fear. 
My RResearch PProject OObserving CChildren PPlaying OOutdoors
My research project is based on a Qualitative approach (Sparkes 1992; Hammersley and
Atkinson, 1992). During Autumn 2003, I visited two groups in two different
friluftsbarnehager that spent most of the day outdoor in the forest. I stayed with them for
twelve days from late August to December. I watched children play, wrote some notes and
finished my log later on. I videotaped children’s play when they were happy for me to do
so. The tape was transcribed and analysed together with the log. First, I tried to observe
the whole group because I wanted to get a general idea of how children behaved. Then
I kept on observing different groups of children in their play and play at popular features. 
Both friluftsbarnehager alternated different places, camps, out in wild environment. The
only facility at the camp was the fire. Some camps were near the main  barnehage
building, while some were nearly an hour’s walk or a short bus journey away. My
observations have been discussed with and confirmed by the staff and my colleagues.
How ddid tthe CChildren PPlay?
Each camp had different natural features, such as different woodland, a grassy field, a lot
of cliffs and really big rocks.  On coming to the camp, some children started to play
immediately and some stayed with the staff at the camp. The latter group could find a
knife and start whittling or help in building the bonfire. One of the staff always had to
stay by the fire. One of the Barnehager also prepared a hot meal for the children by the
fire every day at noon. The children who immediately started to play, were either focused
on where to play and had made arrangements for play before they arrived at the camp,
or they went around looking for facilities and playmates before starting real play. 
Physical AActivity PPlay
Physical activity play was prominent most of the time. I saw a lot of activities which were
repeated in the context of exercise play (Pellegrini and Smith, 1998). The activities could
be:
Climbing up very steep hillsides and sliding down again;
Climbing up and jumping down from big rocks or small cliffs;124 Questions of Quality
Climbing in trees;
Throwing javelins or cones;
Shooting with bows and arrows;
Rolling on the ground;
Balancing on stones, fallen trees etc.;
Whittling a stick.
I will argue that all these activities were based on what the environment afforded and
the functional significance of the surroundings (Heft 1988). Children are aware of how
steep a slope must be to be able to slide down, and they explore different ways of sliding
down according to their fear and ability. When climbing, they find their own ways up,
fitting their strength, height and skills to the task. They intuitively examine what nature
affords them, and they stop climbing when it becomes too dangerous for them. All the
elements listed above were also seen as a part of role-play. 
Role-pplay
The environment with its natural features constituted a scene for role-playing. They were
a mother and children, a mouse or a cat family moving around looking for something to
eat, running away from a threat or whatever the dramatic adviser (always one of the
children) told them to do. On their trips, they sought the natural features that could give
different challenges. They moved around through shrubs, crossing rock-strewn slopes, up
and down hillsides while speeding up and down, often fleeing. The one in front perceived
what the environment would  afford her. Sometimes her movements were too
complicated for some of those who followed, but they never mentioned or commented
on the behaviour. The play had the elements of running effectively around and dealing
with obstacles. I observed this kind of play in both institutions. In one, this play belonged
to a group of girls, but sometimes boys were involved. In the other, both boys and girls
participated almost all the time.
Some boys’ play had a different content. They were pirates, workers on a spacecraft, car
drivers, Robin Hood or Harry Potter. Their play was more vigorous and their movements
more dynamic. Often they also carried sticks with them, and sometimes there was an
element of fight, either verbal or physical. I never saw them participate in the mother and
child play, and they seldom allowed girls to participate in their play. The advanced
climbers found their spacecraft or their castle at the top of a tree suitable for climbing.
Big branches afforded opportunities for sitting, balancing, swinging and rocking and all
these elements were found in the play. Another element was the fight, and even a fight
can take place in a tree, if the tree is suitable. I watched different kinds of fights in the
trees. The fights were very much verbal and as soon as the intruder was a real danger,
they surrendered, climbed down, or negotiated a solution.Children Playing in Nature 125
In the role-play the elements of  nature were used in different ways. The shrubs and trees
were transformed into houses, cars, garages, spacecraft, castles and whatever.
Implements such as switches for lights, door openings, rocket launchers, steering wheels
etc. were always found and used by the children in their play. Stepping-stones, for
example, function as an entrance for a house, stepping from stone to stone became an
important element of a mother and child play. A windfall where the wind had blown
down trees could be a scene for a role-play. Like staying in trees, staying at windfalls
demanded balance and strength. The windfall gave opportunities for those who did not
want to be quiet during a part of the role-play. If the tree or the windfall afforded it, some
children were balancing, hanging, swinging or turning somersaults when the dramatic
adviser told them to be in a car, in a plane or at school. They played their individual
exercise play parallel, but within the role-play.
Go EExploring
Another distinctive type of play was the number of expeditions that set out to discover
something. In the autumn, spiders’ webs were easy to find and they were attractive to
some of the boys who challenged themselves to kiss the spiders’ webs. Other exciting
features were small caves, and stories were made up about who might have lived there.
A dead mouse, a cocoon, a snail roused from its winter sleep in a warm hand, are all
examples which were found and brought back to the camp to be shown the to staff and
discussed. 
Traditional PPlay
The last type of plays was chase and catch play, hide and seek and different singing
games. Most of this play was started by children themselves, but once during the day,
adults could start a game and very often the whole group participated. Different variants
of chase and catch and hide and seek were popular, and sometimes the children started
those games on their own. The ground, with its elements of vegetation and rocks made
those games more challenging than if played on a flat ground, and emphasised the
impact that the outdoors can have on children’s play. 
Conclusion
I found that physical activity play was the prominent activity in these friluftsbarnehager.
The children were more or less physicaly active all the time. The key elements of the
exercise play (Pelligrini and Smith, 1998) were functions of different features in the
environment, and the play had different characteristics according to the different
surroundings. Where elements such as good climbing trees, windfalls, steep hillsides and
dense bushes were available, these elements were included in nearly all the role play.
Physical skills and body control seemed to determine the child’s participation more than
age (Kaarby, 2004). 126 Questions of Quality
Quality aaccording tto tthe NNorwegian Barnehage
A program for Quality improvement in “barnehager” has just come to an end. The
preliminary conclusions are of great interest from the point of view of friluftsbarnehager.
The conclusions state that quality in the Norwegian  barnehager first and foremost is
characterized by:  
“A positive environment with a high level of well-being for the involved groups;
Emphasizing play and variety of activities;
Emphasizing outdoor activities and experience.” (Søbstad, 2004: 68)
These characteristics correspond with the main focus of the general framework plan for
barnehagen which is on social interaction and play. Because quality is both relative and
normative it is meaningful to talk about a special Norwegian Quality in  barnehager
(Søbstad, 2004). 
How tthe WWild EEnvironment IInfluences tthe QQuality oof CChildren’s PPlay
Quality can be understood as the meaning or value a phenomenon has to those who are
involved (Dahlberg  et al., 1999; Søbstad, 2004). I have tried to describe how the wild
environment influences children’s play and, from my point of view, gives value to play. I
have tried to describe how nature was a dominant element in all kinds of play, and how
children perceive functions of the environment and use them (Heft, 1988). Because of the
seasons, the landscape has different characteristics and affords different functions during
the year. These different features give various options and great diversity. The creativity
children showed when transforming objects was conspicuous. While some will say that
the environment simply serves the play, another way of looking at it is to ask how the
environment created the play, how a feature invited just that particular kind of play. 
Nearly a hundred children in six barnehager were asked what they preferred doing, and
ninety-eight per cent answered running, jumping and climbing (Søbstad, 2004). All these
activities are what children in  friluftsbarnehager do all the time, as described earlier in
this paper. The possibilities that nature gives for vigorous gross motor moments are of
great value for children involved. 
According to Pelligrini and Smith (1998), physical activity play has developmental
functions in proportion to endurance and strength. From a health perspective, there is
now a focus on children becoming more and more sedentary. The fact that children, when
given the opportunity to play in outdoor surroundings, are physically active nearly all the
time, shows that children enjoy being physically active. It seems like they are more
engaged, involved and socially included in play outdoors (Klepsvik, 1995).Children Playing in Nature 127
As I see it, another benefit for children is the many and various impressions which the
wild environment gives. The four seasons and all sorts of weather make the same
surroundings different each time. Being outdoors all through the year, children are much
more aware of those shifts, and the different sense impressions they provide. The
experience of nature is one of the basic qualities of friluftsliv. Practical experiences from
different situations give children fundamental knowledge, and in the  barnehage they
have the opportunity to share the experience linguistically and to interact based on these
shared experiences.
References
Borge, A., Nordhagen, R. and Lie, K. ( 2003). The Child in the Environment: Forest Daycare Centers Modern Day Care with Historical Antecedents,  The History of the Family,
Volume 8, pp. 605-658.
Dahlberg, G., Moss, P. and Pence A. (1999). Beyond Quality in Early Childhood Education
and Care. London: Routledge Falmer.
Fjørtoft, I. (2001). The Natural Environment as a Playground for Children: The Impact of
Outdoor Play in Pre–Primary School Children: A Landscape for Learning. Early Childhood
Education Journal, Volume 29, No. 2, pp. 111-117.
Gibson, J. (1979). The Ecological Approach to Visual Perception. Boston: Houghton Mifflin
Company.
Hammersley, M. and Atkinson, P. (1992).  Feltmetodikk Grunnlaget for Feltarbeid og
Feltforskning. Oslo: Ad Notam Gyldendal.
Heft, H. (1988). Affordances of Childrens’ Environments: A Functional Approach to
Environmental Description. Children’ Environments Quarterly, Volume 5, No. 3. 
Høyland, M. (1999).  Natur “Barnehager” i Vestfold, Rapport og Problemnotat,
Fylkesmannen I Vestfold.
Lysklett, O., Emilsen, K. and Hagen, T. (2003). Hva kjennetegner natur- og
“Frilufts”Barnehager.”” Barnehagefolk, Volume 4, pp. 78-85.
Kaarby, K. (2004). Children Outdoor in the Nature. Paper presented at European Teacher
Education Network Conference in Portugal, February 2004.
Klepsvik, K. (1995).  Friluftsliv i Barnehagen. En Kvalitativ Undersøkelse Barnehagens
Innflytelse på Barns Friluftsliv. Oslo: University of Sport.128 Questions of Quality
Ministry of Children and Family Affairs (1996). Framework Plan for ”Barnehager.”
Parliament Report: St. meld., nr. 39 (2000-2001). Friluftsliv White Paper to Parliament.
Pellegrini, A. and Smith, P. (1998). Physical Activity Play: The Nature and Function of a
Neglected Aspect of Play. Child Development, Volume 69, No. 3, pp. 577-598.
Sparkes, A. (1992). The Paradigm Debate: An Extended Overview and a Celebration of
Differences, (in) Sparkes, A. (Ed.). Research in Physical Education and Sport – Exploring
Alternative Visions. London: Falmer Press.
Søbstad, F. (2004). Mot Stadig Nye Mål. Trondheim: DMMH’s Publikasjonsserie 01/04

An expatriate is -

An expatriate (in abbreviated form, expat) is a person temporarily or permanently residing in a country and culture other than that of the person's upbringing or legal residence. The word comes from the Latin termexpatriātus from ex ("out of") and patriā the ablative case of patria ("country, fatherland").



In its broadest sense, an expatriate is any person living in a different country from where he or she is a citizen. In common usage, the term is often used in the context of professionals sent abroad by their companies, as opposed to locally hired staff (who can also be foreigners). The differentiation found in common usage usually comes down to socio-economic factors, so skilled professionals working in another country are described as expatriates, whereas a manual labourer who has moved to another country to earn more money might be labelled an 'immigrant'. There is no set definition and usage does vary depending on context and individual preferences and prejudices.
In the 19th century, Americans, numbering perhaps in the thousands, were drawn to Europe—especially to Munich and Paris—to study the art of painting. Henry James, for instance, was a famous expatriate American writer from the 1870s, who adopted England as his home.
The term 'expatriate' in some countries also has a legal context used for tax purposes. An expatriate living in a country can receive a favorable tax treatment. In this context a person can only be an expatriate if they move to a country other than their own to work with the intent of returning to their home country within a period of no more than 5 fiscal years. This number of years can vary per tax jurisdiction, but 5 years is the most commonly used maximum period.

Trends in expatriation

During the later half of the 20th century expatriation was dominated by professionals sent by their employers to foreign subsidiaries or headquarters. Starting at the end of the 20th century globalization created a global market for skilled professionals and leveled the income of skilled professionals relative to cost of living while the income differences of the unskilled remained large. Cost of intercontinental travel had become sufficiently low, such that employers not finding the skill in a local market could effectively turn to recruitment on a global scale.[citation needed]
This has created a different type of expatriate where commuter and short-term assignments are becoming more common and often used by organizations to supplement traditional expatriation.[8] Private motivation is becoming more relevant than company assignment. Families might often stay behind when work opportunities amount to months instead of years. The cultural impact of this trend is more significant. Traditional corporate expatriates did not integrate and commonly only associated with the elite of the country they were living in. Modern expatriates form a global middle class with shared work experiences in multi-national corporation and working and living the global financial and economical centers. Integration is incomplete but strong cultural influences are transmitted. Middle class expatriates contain many re-migrants from emigration movements one or two generations earlier.
In Dubai the population is predominantly expatriates, from countries such as India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and the Philippines, with only 20% of the population made up of citizens.[9]
The continuing shift in expatriates has often been difficult to measure. According to UN statistics, more than 200 million people will be living outside of their home country in 2010[citation needed]. However, this number also includes economic migrants.
In terms of outbound expatriation, the UK has currently the highest number of expatriates among developed countries with more than three million British living abroad, followed by Germany and Italy.[10] On an annual basis, emigration from the UK has stood at about 400,000 per year for the past 10 years.[11] In terms of expatriates influx, the most popular expatriate destinations are currently Spain, followed by Germany and the UK.[12]
The Expat Directory is currently collating information on expatriate movements to provide a statistical overview of expatriate origin and destination countries. Current statistics show that the majority of expatriates originate from the United States. The questionnaire aims to provide further information or key destinations and the length of time that expatriates spend overseas. The survey will remain open ended with monthly snapshots collated from March 2010.[13]
According to linkexpats,[14] Dubai claims the highest number of expatriates,[15] followed by Abu Dhabi, and MuscatOman.
The Global Economic downturn of 2008/9 has seen many United Kingdom Expatriates returning back to the UK. This trend has been predominantly attributed to 'pensioner expatriates' with the poor exchange rate making life less affordable.[16] The process of relocating back to one's home country is known as repatriation and brings with it a specific set of challenges.[17]

[edit]Business handling of expatriate employees

In dealing with expatriates, an international company should recognise their value and have experienced staff to deal with them and follow written policies on expatriates' benefits.[18] Salary of internationally assigned personnel customarily consists of standard salary and monetary benefits such as cost of living and/or hardship allowances supported by non-monetary incentives i.e. housing and education. Some companies will completely cover the cost of the education, even at relatively expensive international schools, while other, usually smaller companies, encourage families to find local schooling options.
International corporations often have a company-wide policy and coaching system that includes spouses at an earlier stage in the decision-making process, giving spouses an official voice. Not many companies provide any compensation for loss of income of expatriate spouses, although they often do provide other benefits and assistance. The level of support differs, ranging from offering a job-hunting course for spouses at the new location to full service partner support structures, run by volunteering spouses supported by the organization. An example of an expatriate-led project can be found in the Gracia Arts Project of Barcelona.
There are several advantages and disadvantages of using expatriate employees to staff international company subsidiaries.[19] Advantages include, permitting closer control and coordination of international subsidiaries and providing a broader global perspective. Disadvantages include high transfer costs, the possibility of encountering local government restrictions, and possibly creating a problem of adaptability to foreign environments.[20]

[edit]Subtleties of usage

In some countries, such as Switzerland, the term "expat" is not used for all foreigners living and working there, but only to those on "expat" contracts. Typical Swiss expats will be living in housing provided by the employer, with most other expenses such as children's (English) education also paid by the employer. In theory, this is because they are still maintaining a home in their original country. This is in strong contrast with those on "local" contracts who are treated and paid like other locals. The "expats" have a reputation of being flush with money, and raising the prices for others who are not subsidised in this way. Expat contracts are usually time limited, so the expats either move on to another assignment, or are given a local contract without expat subsidies. [21]

[edit]

Traditions

Thankful For Our Traditions Traditions are a big part of the holiday season for our family. Traditions bring sweet memories of our chil...