Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Paper or Plastic

Warning: Not for the weak of stomach nor the faint of heart. Rated PG-13 for language.

The garbage disposal is on the fritz.
Well, not really. Hamburger grease or something like it got poured down the drain and mucked everything up to the point where the kitchen sink wouldn't drain and in fact, vomited up a bunch of partially dispos-all-ed food from the last 4 to 5 days.
Awesome, right?
Well, Richard went in like a champ. I couldn't watch, but I helped him clean out under the sink so he had a clear work area and retreated to the living room to wait for the inevitable.
When I heard, "$^!t! F%@&! D@*#!" from the kitchen, I got up, retrieved as many towels as I could carry and delivered them to my soaking, stinking, greasy husband and tried not to make any snide comments about kitchen-related Tourette's syndrome.
End of story? We are currently without a kitchen sink. Apparently one of the pipes was completely rusted out, which is not what caused the initial problem, but now it can't be put back together until it's fixed.
Hopefully we'll be back in business tonight, but until then we will either eat out or use paper plates.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Close! But no cigar...

Oh, so close.
Richard had the opportunity to meet my troublesome co-worker today!
We went to the company store over lunch and ran into him. I said, "Richard this is my co-worker that I was telling you about, remember? His name is Blank Blanketyblank."
I watched Richard's face for any sign of recognition, for his eyes to light up at the mention of his name. Nothing. I thought, 'Wow, Richard is a good faker.' They shook hands and chatted (which consisted of many compliments to me and actual finger-pointing on Blank's part at my pregnant tummy) and then we went our separate ways.
As we walked to the car, I waited for Richard to say something.
Finally I said, "So, what did you think?"
"Think of what?"
"That was HIM!!"
"WHAT?! That was HIM? Man, if I had known that, I would have given him the death grip! He would have remembered me for days."

Friday, January 25, 2008

That ONE Thing

Do you ever have something on your shopping list that you forget repeatedly?
I hit Walmart, Walgreens or Target at least twice a week. Usually more.
There is no excuse for the fact that we are completely out of toothpaste.
We have squeezed every bit out of our full-sized tubes. and two travel sized tubes.
Yet somehow it just doesn't occur to me to pick some up at the store one of the zillions of times I am running in for milk, or yarn, or something else not nearly as important as dental hygiene.
Will somebody please remind me to get some toothpaste this weekend? I have a lot of shopping to do, but you know I'm going to forget.

Thursday, January 24, 2008


I just had a text message exchange with Lauren.

It went like this:
Erin: How are you?
Lauren: Good. How are you?
E: Bored out of my effing mind.
L: You should talk to J. She spends every day pretending to work.
E: Every single day, Lauren.
L: It's cool. I organized panties today.

Point taken.

Rad New Blog

For some reason, I forgot to mention to everybody that Jodi has started a blog!
Check it out--it's really very good. : )
Welcome to blogworld, Jodi!!
Love you!
p.s. Isn't this a cool photo?
p.p.s. Jodi and I are due within two days of each other!

Things I am NOT

I'm getting a little frustrated with my current occupation today.
This has led me to make a list of things that I am not:
1. fast moving about something I don't care about.
2. hard-hearted.
3. much of a listener.
4. a mind reader.
5. good at reading between the lines.
6. a helper.
7. a uni-tasker (see #3).
8. a rule follower.
9. an organizer.
10. a freaking school nurse (buy your own ibuprophen, people).
11. good at adjusting my own bad attitudes.
12. a plain old secretary.
13. stupid.

Things that I am:
1. still fine.
2. struggling not to curse a LOT in this post, but I know that Sheri reads it and I don't want her to know that I want to say the F-word, plus Kelli totally made fun of me last time I used it.

Today marks 35 WORK days to go until my due date.

35 days, 35 days, 35 days...

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

A New Approach

Dear Same Particular Co-Worker,
I have a new idea.
I'm going to call you by the wrong name from now on to see if you get the idea that we are not friends.
p.s. I'm still fine. Really!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Silent No More

On this day in 1973, Roe v Wade was passed, making abortion legal in the United States.

On Saturday morning I had the privilege and profound joy of going to listen to Carla give her testimony with Silent No More Minnesota at the State Capital in St. Paul. I was stunned to learn many statistics about abortion, all of which led me to some very important realizations:
Women DO regret their abortions.
Women ARE hurt emotionally and physically by abortion.
Men DO regret abortions.
Men ARE hurt emotionally by abortion.

I will join Carla today in praying that hearts and minds will be changed about abortion. I will also continue to pray for Carla as she honors God by reaching out in love with her story and without judgement to both pregnant and post-abortive women.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Dear Future Erin,

Where were you today when I was eating cheese popcorn in my white shirt?
You really let me down on that one.
Present Erin

p.s. We. Are. In. A. Fight.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Dear Past Erin,

You're not going to believe this, but Brett Favre is going to throw infinity interceptions during the playoff game against the Giants, including one in OverTime that will lead to their immediate loss.
Richard will take this very hard.
In fact, when you tell him this loss makes you feel like your cat died, he will tell you that would have been easier to handle.
Don't take it personally. He doesn't mean it.
Future Erin

p.s. He TOTALLY means it.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Hello Moto-Miracle

All day yesterday, I couldn't send any messages or make any phone calls from my cell phone.
By 5pm as I was walking into the unbelievably crowded T-Mobile store, I was fed. up.
I told the girl, "I am fed. up. with my phone! It won't work!" I described to her the trouble I was having and as I unzipped my coat (to prove it) said, "I am eight months pregnant! I have to have a phone that works!"
"Oh, man," she said. "That's not good. Can you even call your voicemail?"
"No," I said."
"Oh, that's very bad."
Great, I thought. I'm gonna have to buy a new phone. What a pain. I'm going to be here for hours.
Then she took my phone apart, took out the SIM card, put it in a little gadget, and gave me a new card.
I have no idea what she did, but my phone works great.
I was out of there FOR FREE in under 15 minutes.
It's a Moto-Miracle.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Why or What?

I dreamt two nights ago that one of my co-workers asked me either, "Why are you a Christian, Erin?" or "What kind of a Christian are you, Erin?"
I couldn't remember which question she asked as soon as I woke up.
Either way, it troubled me.
Oswald Chambers asks, "Has there been a point in your life which you now mark as your last day? Is there a place in your life to which you go back in memory with humility and overwhelming gratitude, so that you can honestly proclaim, 'Yes, it was then, at my 'white funeral,’ that I made an agreement with God.'"
My last day came in 1998. I had given my life to Christ in our basement on Vine Street at the age of five, and I earnestly believe that I was filled with the Holy Spirit at that time. I do not believe that I began the path to sanctification until 1998, one day in my bedroom in Alabama. The details are not important, but it happened. *Upon further thought, that's a silly thing to say. Of course, I was on the path to sanctification. I don't think I understood its importance until that day in Alabama.
Shortly thereafter, God proved his love to me by opening my eyes (literally) to a spiritual realm beyond my comprehension...and protecting me from it.
Chambers goes on to write,
When we talk about the call of God, we often forget the most important thing, namely, the nature of Him who calls [...] The call is the expression of the nature of the One who calls, and we can only recognize the call if that same nature is in us. The call of God is the expression of God’s nature, not ours. God providentially weaves the threads of His call through our lives, and only we can distinguish them. It is the threading of God’s voice directly to us over a certain concern, and it is useless to seek another person’s opinion of it.
The call of God is not a reflection of my nature; my personal desires and temperament are of no consideration. As long as I dwell on my own qualities and traits and think about what I am suited for, I will never hear the call of God. [...] The majority of us cannot hear anything but ourselves. And we cannot hear anything God says. But to be brought to the place where we can hear the call of God is to be profoundly changed.

I can see where God has woven the threads of His call through my life from the age of five, to seventeen, to my marriage at 23, and into the growth He has insisted upon in the last eight months as I prepare for my baby.
Over the past year, I've been continually asking..."Who am I in Christ?"
The bottom line? If you ask, God will answer you. It hurts, and it sucks, and it's intensely emotional, but it seems to be satisfying, comforting and RIGHT...I think. I'll let you know.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

I know why the caged bird sings.

Dear One Particular Co-Worker,
This note is going to be very forward, because so far subtleties have escaped you.
You have grown overly troublesome.
In fact, so troublesome that I'm not sure you're worth the...trouble.
I am about to start being mean to you.
Yesterday you visited my desk SEVEN times. Today, it's only been four, but I'm pretty sure that when you came to my desk to stretch your back (remember when you leaned on my cube and literally stretched?) and I looked at you like you were a complete fool, you got the idea that four times is enough.
Let's just cut to the chase: perhaps you could just come by once a day. Or even better, how about you only come by if you absolutely need something, which, by my record has not been since November.
In response to future conversation topics:
-It's cool that your baby needed a diaper change last night.
-No, there is nothing that I need from your baby stuff.
-Yes, it looks pretty cold outside.
-My pregnancy is still going just fine. It hasn't changed much since this morning. Or yesterday, for that matter.
-I'm glad you printed something.
-No thanks, I already have lunch plans--forever.
-No, you cannot have my cell phone number. It is not a work phone number.
I feel that at this point I should let you know that I have changed my regular route from the door to my desk so as to avoid anything completely stupid that you might say to me as I pass by. The extra steps are worth it.
I appreciate that you have never touched me, really. If you should happen to feel the need, my husband will have something to say to you, as will Swamp-Man.
Please back off, dude.
I don't know what gave you the impression that I liked you. Honestly, I can't remember doing anything that would make you think I wanted to talk.
Lest you should think this letter is tongue-in-cheek, I would like to return your attention to the top of this letter and remind you that subtleties have failed. Don't fool yourself. I'm not bantering.

p.s. The next time you tease me about being pregnant, I retort, and then you say, "Ohhh, don't mess with the pregnant girl!" I will not be held responsible for my actions. Consider yourself warned.
p.p.s I borderline hate you.
p.p.p.s. Only borderline because it's wrong to hate.

True Story

For Christmas, Lauren gave Grandma Shirley a pair of house boots, similar to the ones shown here (I found this photo on ebay).

She was wearing them around the house when Gram (almost 102 years old) said to her, "With every step you take, I can see your balls swinging."
*I'm pretty sure she'd kill me if she knew I'd published this, but some things are just too perfect.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Always the Groomsman

This weekend, Richard got asked to be in another wedding. He and I laughed as we tried to count the number of weddings he's been in. We couldn't count them all.
I can think of eight weddings off the top of my head and he has two more coming up in April. Needless to say, Rich has the groomsman thing down pat, and can even give one heck of a Best Man's Toast. He also throws a pretty great bachelor party.

This got me to thinking.
What is it about my man that so many other men want his presence in their weddings?
This got me thinking about friendships.
I really think that when it comes to friendship, men do a better job than women.
Case in point:
-Forgetting a birthday: not that big of a deal.
-Forgetting about boys night: big deal.
-Missing a new haircut, pair of glasses, facial hair, etc.: no big deal.
-Missing a new truck or motorcycle: big deal.
Other things that seem to make a male friendship work:
-Grabbing, pinching, twisting, or hitting.
-Name calling / nicknames.
-Silly voices.
-Semi-perverted text messages.
-Quietly listening to each other and not offering advice, unless asked.
-Offering to help out, and meaning it.
-Showing up to help out.
-Returning phone calls.
-Answering phone calls.
-Sticking up for (and protecting when necessary) each other's wives.
-Not holding grudges.
-Making commitments.
-Keeping commitments.
-Picking wise battles (that usually end in grabbing, pinching, twisting or hitting).
-Showing mercy to each other.

Oswald Chambers writes, "True friendship is rare on earth. It means identifying with someone in thought, heart, and spirit. The whole experience of life is designed to enable us to enter into this closest relationship with Jesus Christ."
I agree that true friendship is rare on earth, and while I don't think there will be much pinching or name calling in heaven, I guess if so many young men want Richard in their weddings, he must be a pretty good friend.

Dear Past Erin,

When you get up in the night looking for a snack in the wee hours of January 14, you will spill an open and precariously balanced 1lb bag of M&M's all over the carpeted hallway near the pantry.
This will be a real pain in the ass.
Future Erin

p.s. Hillary doesn't win, don't worry. But it ain't pretty.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Dog Whisperer

Pedro needed reminding last night that I am indeed in charge.
I am the mommy.
I am the Alpha dog.
I turned him over on his back to force him to submit to me, and I held him there by his throat(Gently, of course. The exercise was not intended to hurt, only to remind him of who needs to submit to whom in our relationship...), all the while maintaining eye contact.
I didn't tell him he was bad, I didn't hit him, I didn't even yell.
I simply firmly reminded him that I. Am. In. Charge.
Forever and ever, amen.
Oh, did I mention that we're trying a new discipline technique at our house?
For future reference, will this work for toddlers?
I think Cesar would have been proud.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Could've Had a Middle Finger

Shortly after my family moved back to Hudson in 2002, my mom and I were on Vine Street at that stop sign right in front of the high school. The two boys in the Honda in front of us both flipped off the school.
That just didn't make sense to me. How dumb to flip off a building, right? I've thought about it for six years now. I just didn't get it. It's a building. It doesn't even care if you pee on it. It doesn't have feelings, or even a sense of propriety (not to be confused with a sense of property! Oh, I kill myself!).
Today on my way back from my chiro appointment with my drive thru lunch on the seat next to me, I passed a billboard that featured a photo of a half-eaten order of french fries and the tagline "Could've had a V8."
I get it now.
I get why those boys flipped off something that couldn't even see them.

Dear Past Erin,

Do not leave your Omega-3 Fish Oil pills out.
You leave one on your nightstand on the evening of January 9, where the cat finds it, plays with it, knocks it on the floor and shares it with the dog. You are very sad about this.
Future Erin

p.s. The coffee is poisoned!
p.p.s. The dog will pee in the same spot in your bedroom exactly 438 more times before he is hit by a car, strangely enough, in your own driveway.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

The Minors

Drinkin' nasty beer and breakin' hearts;
Givin' yourself tattoos with throwin' darts;
It's a
Southern man thing.
-Chuck Steak, 2002-ish

This site is rated PG-13 for mild profanity, but is worth a read, especially when you learn that Charlie is a loooooong lost friend of mine from Alabama and as such, holds a special place in my heart. Welcome to blogworld, Chuck Steak.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Three Years

On July 31, 2004, Richard and I were running errands in Oakdale and decided to stop for Chinese food at our favorite dirty, disgusting, hole-in-the-wall Chinese restaurant.
Richard had been acting pretty weird all day and even mentioned over lunch that we might stop at the humane society and look at the cats. This was something I wanted to do for ages, but Rich said we should at least be engaged before we got a cat together.
I thought this was all out of the ordinary, but didn't pay much attention--I was dreaming about my future kitty!
When we sat down for lunch, Richard was very strange. He bounced through the entire meal, perched on the edge of the booth. He ate about three bites of his favorite Sesame Chicken. I said, "Why aren't you eating? What's wrong with you?"
"Nothin', I'm just not very hungry."
"Alright, well, I'm gonna dig in, then..."
I ate to my hearts content and chatted through lunch, ignoring what I assumed was an ADD fit on the part of my nutso boyfriend.
When we (I) finished eating, the owner brought out our fortune cookies, unwrapped on a plate.
"It's cookie time!" she shrieked as she hurried back to the kitchen. She and the cook peeked out at us.
Richard grabbed one of the cookies and stuffed half of it in his mouth.
I left mine on the plate.
"Aren't you gonna eat your cookie?"
"No...I don't really like fortune cookies. Plus, it's unwrapped. That's sorta gross."
"Don't you at least want to see what your fortune says??"
"I guess so."
I opened the remaining cookie and read, "I love you, Erin Duffert. Will you marry me?"
I was flabberghasted. What was my name doing in a fortune cookie??
Richard came around to my side of the booth and got down on one knee.
"Will you marry me?"
I'm pretty sure I said yes. Honestly, I can't remember. My brain was still trying to catch up with everything that was going on!
Rich said, "Do you want your ring?"
"It's in the cookie!"
Sure enough, there was my DREAM engagement ring hidden in a cookie.

We married 6 months later on January 8, 2005, three years ago today. The best decision of my entire life.
Recently, I stopped at the China House to pick up some Sesame Chicken to bring home for dinner, and the owner said, "Hello, Erin!! When is the baby coming?!" She didn't even know I was pregnant. She just knew it was about time for the baby to come. : )

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Insulation Nation

Remember the ice issues we were having?
Today, Richard and Aaron put 12 more inches of insulation in our attic.
Honestly, it's warmer in here already.
Sarah and I had a great time watching movies and eating Sheri's DELICIOUS brownies while our husbands got more filthy by the minute.

Click on this image to zoom in and check out Richard's face. Even his eyelashes are covered!

**Update a couple of hours later**
The ice dams are falling off the roof in big chunks! Thank you, God for high temperatures and a hard working husband.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Another one bites the dust...

This poor guy took it like a champ.


This morning, I woke up at 3:31 to go to the bathroom.
I remember the days when, 1. I didn't wake up in the middle of the night for anything, and 2. Getting out of bed to do anything was EASY. In fact, I remember when doing anything in bed was easy...alas, I digress.
By the time I made it back to bed it was 3:33.
I thought to myself, "Quick, make a wish!"
I wished to be on time for work today.
At 3:34, I thought, "Well that was a waste of a wish."

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

New Years Rockin' Crab Fest

Josh and Cara invited over Rich and me, along with Sarah, Aaron and Wayne to ring in the new year with a crab leg feast.
Between 6 people (Richard wouldn't eat any!), we ate 12lbs of crab legs!
Chef Aaron made them so delicious...honestly, it was divine.
We stayed well past midnight drinking sparkling grape juice and playing games.
I had so much fun, in fact, that I forgot to take more pictures.
Here's the few I brought home.