Thursday, July 31, 2008


Ok, here's the thing.
Facebook is a tool. A tool used to spy on people. Facebook is supposed to be used to find out who got fat, pregnant, married, divorced, hired, fired, moved, and who was successful or a failure in life.
More importantly, it is for spying on your high school sweetheart to see if his wife is as ugly as you hope, your college nemesis who made freshman drama a nightmare and that guy with whom you should have gone to the prom. (Sigh.)
Sure, it's a networking tool, but save for a few friends that I like to encourage and love up by way of commenting on some photos (hi, Julianne!), Facebook, by and large, is for SPYING. Facebook is the layman's spyware.
My point?
Bumper stickers, fun walls, sports teams, etc., just serve to clutter pages and get in my way when I am trying to see the new photos you added from your vacation to Duluth. I'm DYING to see you swimming in those frigid waters, but I can't find your albums due to all the garbled nonsense filling up your profile page.
Let's clean up those pages, people, and use Facebook for it's God-given purpose. Spying, snooping, and exploring.
I'm just saying.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The Great Apple Bread Debauchle

Last week Gertrude brought Richard a loaf of homemade pumpernickel bread. (YUM!) Not liking to send home an empty pan, SJ and I decided to make Katie's Prize Winning Apple Bread yesterday. I opted to double the recipe and make a loaf for us and for Gertrude.
Lauren says to always follow the recipe exactly the first time you make it. Good advice.
I mis-measured (of course) the apples and had nearly two cups extra of chopped fruit.
Richard suggested making a third loaf.
So I did.
Not one of them turned out. NOT ONE. They all fell. Totally caved in.
Did I discover this before I took Gertrude her loaf? No.
Did I have to call Gertrude and tell her that her loaf was mushy inside? Yes.
Did Richard and I eat the ends that were baked properly and throw the middles away? Yes.
Were they DELICIOUS? Yes.
Will I be trying again? Yes, but not before my pride recovers.
Note to self: when Katie says to bake for 55-65 minutes, and you're doing three loaves, 60 minutes is N.O.T. enough baking time.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008


If the biggest thing on right now is Brooke Hogan, there's something wrong with our world.

I mean, aren't we at war?

Monday, July 28, 2008

Book Review

Her Royal Spyness by Rhys Bowen
Synopsis: In 1932 a 21-year old debutante (Georgie) flees her brother's Scottish home when she hears that a party is going to be given in order to set her up with an undesireable Romanian prince. In London, where she has taken refuge, she has an adventure (that's right--singular, as in ONE), then discovers a dead body. She then goes on to try to figure out whodunnit.
Readability: Insultingly easy and as such, very hard to get in to. About 100 pages into the novel, the mystery finally starts. RED FLAG.
Predictability: To be honest, I didn't know whodunnit! To be fair, neither did Georgie...
Couldn't Put it Down Factor: I had no trouble putting it down.
Recommend it?: Not really, though it is a quick and easy read that takes you to a different city. Sometimes that's JUST what you need.
Overall Rating: Two stars. One for getting it published and the second for keeping me guessing til the end.

Believe it or not, I AM reading a book right now that I'm really enjoying. : ) Hopefully I'll write a nice review soon!

Thanks, Swampy.

This made me cry and cry. Sweetest thing ever.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Happy 80th Birthday, Shirley, Sr.!

Today, we had the honor and priveledge of throwing an 80th birthday party for Grandma Shirley. It was a small picnic with fantastic food, laughter and stimulating conversation. "Shirley Sr." got a new set of sheets, a memory foam pillow, a "Broadway Classics" CD and Special Edition Dark Chocolate Starbucks Frappuccino for her birthday.
Here are the Shirley Girlies!
Chatting with Gram during the party.
We had the opportunity (finally) to take a five-generation photo.
Here's a photo of the whole fam. A legacy of Christ-followers. My great-great-grandmother's prayer (six generations ago, if you're counting) was that each generation after she was saved would come to know Christ. I believe this includes our spouses as well. God has been faithful in honoring her prayer. God is good to us!
One of the big events of the day today was to go pick up Gram's Centurian award at the Polk County Fair. Leaving the house is nearly impossible for her these days, so McClain and Richard went to accept it for her. She was thrilled.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Dear Past Erin,

Just a couple things.
WHAT WERE YOU THINKING???? You are not 21 anymore. You can not stay out all night. Three movies at the drive in?? Are you crazy?
You will suffer tomorrow. Consider yourself warned, moron.
Sincerely yours,
Future Erin
p.s. Don't forget the wipes for the sleeping baby who will need to be changed in between each movie! Oops. Too late.
p.p.s. Batman was AWESOME!!!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

I wish I had greener thumbs. If I did, I would say, "I like begonias. They're so complicated." If I was a flower, I would be a begonia.

"(23) May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. (24) The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it." -1 Thes 5:23-24

The mystery of sanctification is that the perfect qualities of Jesus Christ are imparted as a gift to me, not gradually, but instantly once I enter by faith into the realization that He "became for [me] . . . sanctification . . . ." Sanctification means nothing less than the holiness of Jesus becoming mine and being exhibited in my life. (Chambers.)

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


I was supposed to get how many loads of laundry out of this bottle of laundry detergent?

Monday, July 21, 2008

Potato, potahto.

I've had some pretty bad jobs in my life.
And I'm not very old.
While I was in college, I had a data entry job at the headquarters for a company known fondly by some as "God's Garage." (My opinion? "Satan's Lair." Potato, potahto.) When I quit, I did not give notice, and I was informed that I could not apply for a job with the company for seven years. Shux.
Anyhow, I worked the evening shift, which meant that I shared a computer with the woman who worked there during the day. Her screen saver read:
"Guys don't make passes at girls who wear glasses."
I changed it to:
"Guys don't make passes at girls with fat asses."
The seating arrangement changed the next day.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Dear Swampy,

I just couldn't do it. I'm so sorry. I'm sure Watership
, by Richard Adams is a beautiful novel, but I couldn't make
it past the first 100 pages. Here is my review.

Readability: Surprisingly tough (in a good way). I am
convinced that it is MY fault that I couldn't get into this book.

Predictability Factor: Something tells me the rabbits will have
many adventures, encounter much danger, and succeed in the end.

Recommend it? Yes, but only because I've heard such good things about it.

Overall Rating: Not applicable. I'm a weenie.

I hope you'll still be my friend. If it's any consolation, I gave it
five stars in my LibraryThing.

Sincerely sorry,


Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Relax, baby!

Relaxing: A nice, long, hot bath with lavender and chamomile and 150 pages.
Not relaxing: Having to stand up three times to get the shampoo, then the soap, then the conditioner out of the shower caddy.
Even less relaxing: Having to "pump" after my nice, long, hot bath.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Dear Past Erin,

When you get a bug in your knickers to use the spot/steam cleaner to clean the arms and cushions of the couch, you will be horrified to see the brown, no-longer-see-through water coming off of the upholstery.
You will then turn around dump all of the dirty water onto the carpet.
Haha! The reservoir doesn't seal!
Happy cleaning!
Future Erin
p.s. I wish I could warn you further in advance, really, but it's just too funny.

Monday, July 14, 2008

July 19

Next week on July 19, during the 6:00 service at Faith Community Church in Hudson, we are having Shirley Jean publically dedicated to God.
We would love it if you were there to share in our joy.
Please join us in the community room after the church service for an hour of fellowship and to kiss the baby!
Hope to see you there, my blogfriends.

Me too me too me too!

I've been quoted!
Three times!
I am the first, sixth and seventh quotes on the page.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Dear Kara Jo,

Yeah...they RE-WROTE all of The Nanny Diaries for the movie.
I never thought I'd say this, but the movie was actually a lot better than the book.
Thanks for recommending it!
Sincerely yours,

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Book Reviews

Plain Truth by Jodi Picoult
Readability Factor: Easy and very engaging. Some scenes were hard to stomach as a new mother.
Predictability Factor: Either I'm too smart, or Picoult was too obvious. So well-written, however, that I invested myself in 400 pages hoping that I was wrong about "whodunnit," and the author would surprise me. Alas.
Couldn't Put it Down Factor: Five stars. (See why the ending was so disappointing?)
Recommend it? Sure. Just know this. Your first guess as to who did it is wrong. Your second guess is right.
Overall Rating: Four stars. Smart, intriguing, suspenseful and rich.

The Nanny Diaries by Emma Mclaughlin and Nicola Kraus
Readability Factor: Easy
Predictability Factor: I suppose it wasn't very predictable because I was so infuriated by the ending. Sososososo freaking mad about the ending. The romance, however, was too easy and predictable. To be honest, I'm not sure what this novel was really about. A nanny? A child? A romance? I'm still not clear.
Couldn't Put it Down Factor: Four stars (out of five).
Recommend it? Nosiree. Don't waste your freaking time. If you want to know how it ends, shoot me an email. My guess is that the movie has a much better ending than the book. How else would they even get the funding to film it? It was really THAT bad. I'm still stinging.
Overall Rating: Two stars. Cleverly-written, but an unprecidented waste of my time as someone getting closer to death every day.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Noble Character

I was trying to look something up on when I came across The Wife of Noble Character.
"She gets up while it is still dark;
she provides food for her family
and portions for her servant girls."
This verse has always been a source of spiritual consternation for me. I am not that woman, and it bothers me. Don't get me wrong. I work hard at being a good wife and mother, but I often wonder if I'm working hard enough, if I could be working harder.
I was mentally debating whether to commit this issue to God or not (read: Do I want to work on this or ignore it for as long as I can and only address the issue when it becomes absolutely necessary?) and decided to click on over to my old buddy Mr. Chambers.
The first line of today's devotion reads, "A [Christian] is not to take the initiative toward self-realization, but toward knowing Jesus Christ."
Self-serving? Perhaps. But it was a nice reminder of what my FIRST priority is, and, better yet, how God sees me mired in all my imperfections, through the loving eyes of a father. This is, quite possibly, the closest I have come to understanding who I am in Christ in a very long time.

I actually screamed out in frustration in the kitchen today.

I have had 3 hours of sleep. The baby has had 10. Does that seem fair to you?
Last night, I stayed up late to finish The Nanny Diaries and was so PISSED OFF by the ending that I couldn't sleep. Really. It was that bad. (Incidentally, I'm never reading again. It seems impossible for someone to write a book with a good / original ending, so I quit. I can't bear to invest myself in another book only to be disappointed AGAIN.)
I was still awake (fuming) at 3:30 when it started storming outside and Richard woke up long enough to say, "The cat's outside."
So, feeling like a TERRIBLE mother, I got up to look for him. Finally, I woke Richard up and asked him to help. The storm instantly stopped and the cat came home.
He raced downstairs presumably to eat, which he promptly threw up all over the living room floor. We, of course, had just started to drift off.
We both whisper-swore so as not to wake the baby. Together we cleaned up cat barf at 4:30, and woke the baby up. I put her plug back in her mouth, praying that she would just go back to sleep...which she did.
Yesterday was worse. We spent FOUR HOURS at the mall doing pictures and came home with a baby so tired that she couldn't sleep. The coffee I bought in the morning and worked on all day couldn't have helped either. She finally crashed around 8, but not before she cried for 4 hours straight. One hour of crying for each hour we spent at the mall.
Today, I've been trying to be productive, but I SWEAR if I step in ONE. MORE. CINNAMON. TOAST. CRUNCH. I. AM. GOING. TO. LOSE. MY. FREAKING. MIND.
Where are they coming from? I have swept, vacuumed, sicked Pedro on them.

* * *
The baby is finally napping now, and what am I doing? Blogging.
I have to go.
I have to nap on my sheet-less bed. Am I in college again?
Don't tell me how sorry you are. It's ok. Just one of those nights. Who knows...maybe after my nap I'll find it amusing.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

He was so ugly, I nearly cried. I nearly cried, y'all. You ever seen a silverfish? I nearly cried.

Mr. Silverfish on my wall,
I don't like you; not at all.
Yes, I'm nearly six feet tall,
but you have more feet than them all.

Just stay where you are, you nasty little creature.
You spawn of satan.
Product of the Fall.
Purposeless filth.
Stay where you are and I won't touch you, and you won't get out of my kleenex and crawl (faster than a Nebraska cockroach) up my arm.
In fact, stay where you are until morning so that you can get out of Richard's kleenex and crawl up Richard's arm. I think Richard would handle that a lot better than I would.

The Animals

Dear Pedro,
Please stop pooping under the clothesline. I mean, I don't want to punch a gift horse in the mouth, but...please.

Dear Kitty,
No more midnight romps for you.
The driveway is a long way away from the house when Mommy is in her nightgown.
If you can't be quiet when you are outside, you won't get to go outside anymore.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Family Ties

BlogFriends, Richard's grandmother is having surgery tomorrow to have her spleen removed. Please, as you think of us, pray for her safety and speedy recovery.

Heavenly Father, I pray that your hand would be on Joyce tomorrow as she heads into surgery. Make your spirit known, Lord, with your peace and grace. I pray that you would allay any fears that Joyce may have and build Dick up in your sovereignty and faithfulness as he cares for his wife. I pray also that you would build up Brenda, Lori and Kevin as they serve their parents in caring for their physical and emotional needs. I pray, too, that Your peace will be palpable to our family.
In Jesus' name, amen.

p.s. THIS IS MY NEPHEW!!! Is he not the most beautiful creature you've ever laid eyes on???

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Congratulations, E&V!

You are a beautiful family. God's many blessings on all of you. Little Eva, I pray that you will grow to be a towering woman of God, that you will turn to Him in all things and trust His son as your friend and savior.

Welcome, little girl.

Thursday, July 03, 2008


Doorbell rings.
Erin: Hi, Gertrude!*
Gertrude: Does Richard like heavy bread?
E: Sure!
G: We bought this bread and we don't like it, but I thought Richard might like it.
E: Well, thank you, Gertrude!!

Doorbell rings.
E: Hi, Gertrude!
G: Can you get me Richard?
E: He's not here, he's working.
G: Oh, well, will you see if he can fix my alarm clock? I can't make it work.
E: Here, I can help you.
G: No, give it to Richard.

Doorbell rings.
E: Hi, Gertrude.
G: Can I ask Richard if he likes shrimp?
E: I'm sorry Gert, he's not here, he's working.
G: Well, I got you some frozen shrimp for your holiday weekend.
E: That is so thoughtful of you! Thank you.
G: When will Richard be home?
E: Oh, not for a while now. It's just me and the baby. Do you want to come in?
G: No. Cute kid.

If old Gert was about 50 years younger, I think I would be worried. I'm hoping tomorrow she'll bring some of HER MONEY.

*Names have been changed.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Who says we don't know how to party?

Kitty came in this morning VERY dirty. Who knows what he got in to, but let's just say that he's in the basement now, plotting our deaths.

Dear Richard's Professor,

I hate you.
I don't know what you're looking for.
NO ONE writes memos anymore.
We have email in the real world.
Your grading scale is preposterous.
This class isn't even related to our...uh, Richard's...major!
I'll get you, my pretty.
Very sincerely,
p.s. Does this memo follow your freaking outline???