Friday, August 29, 2008

Thursday, August 28, 2008

By the Book

Watch this. Seriously. The whole thing.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Tag, I'm it.

Ten Years Ago: in June, my family moved from Hudson to Decatur, Alabama where I started my junior year of high school. I was the team captain of the golf team and kicked butt in all my English classes.

My To-Do List Today:
1. Finish the laundry.
2. Pack to leave town.
3. Clean up the house.

Snack that I Enjoy: Anything salty!

Things I Would Do if I was a Millionaire: Pay off debt. Buy a new house with a garage for Richard and a room for MEEEE! Set up SJ for college. Adopt children.

Places I've Lived:
St. Paul, MN
Hudson, WI
Norman, OK
Hudson again.
Decatur, AL
Hudson again.
Eau Claire, WI
(Do we count Little Rock, AR?)
Dalkeith, Scotland
Baldwin, WI
Roseville, MN

Tag! You're It!
Jessie Jewell

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


(19)“Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.”
(20) At once they left their nets and followed him.
-Matthew 4:19-20

I'm not sure if many of you have noticed, but I haven't had much to say lately.
I've been in a bit of a funk.
I confess, lonliness, sadness and fear have been my frequent companions here at home.
I knew what was bothering me, but not why it was bothering me so much.
Shirley Jean is ready for solids. Rice cereal.
Now...this is not a big deal. I know. But for some reason, I am really struggling with this milestone. And now I think I know why.
Mid-breakdown tonight, I said to Richard, "I just didn't expect this to be so painful."
He said, "You didn't expect WHAT to be so painful?"
I said, "I watch her grow and change every day, and every day she is getting further away from me."
As I laid on our bed in a pile of tissues, I thought to myself, "God doesn't ever have to feel this way. It's not fair."
What a stupid thing to think. God watches us move further away from him all the time. Some very, very far. Some wander away and wander back. If doing my job as a mother is this much more must it hurt God when we insist on our independence from him? I mean, my job is to help her become independent from me and dependent on God, right?
I think God is allowing me to feel this pain as a reminder of his love for me. He wants me near and wholly dependent on him. He wants me inside of him, just like I long to put my little girl back inside of me where the pain of this broken world can't hurt her.
It further occurs to me that a Wife of Noble Character would not allow herself to be bogged down with sadness and anxiety only to waste time with her precious child. She does not eat the bread of idleness. Nor is she afraid--she can laugh at the days to come! A noble wife would find joy in the development of her thriving baby and celebrate the milestones that increase her independence so that she will one day go out into the world, fully dependent on God, and make fishers of men.
I hope I can remember what God has taught me tonight on that first day of school, on prom night, in her first dorm room, and on her wedding day.
I am caught in a net of my own creation. I will leave it behind and follow Him who so lovingly sustains me.
Will it get easier? I highly doubt it.

p.s. He is especially fond of you.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Was yesterday not the most BEAUTIFUL day?
What a joy to come home and open the windows.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Honorary Grandma

Dear Grandma Julie,
Something about you just makes me love you.
Seeing you tonight was JUST what I needed. As it turns out, motherhood can be a lonely place. I was hoping to be a blessing to you tonight by surprising you for your birthday; instead you were a huge blessing to me with your excitement and love for my little one.
Blessings come in a practical form, too--thank you for the trip to Sam's. I nearly cried when I saw the prices on diapers.
You are now officially an honorary grandma. (But not because of the trip to Sam's. Because you are YOU!)
All my love,
Erin (and Shirley Jean)
p.s. Happy Birthday!
p.p.s. I know you're out there--you don't have to comment. :)
p.p.p.s. I can't BELIEVE you thought my ten-year-old self was a "retarded girl from church."

As long as I live

As long as I live, I don't need to see someone brush their teeth on TV ever again.

Sometimes I just lose track...

A friend of ours asked if he could park his car at our house while he is out of town and needed a ride to the bus station.
We were standing in the kitchen chatting and Richard said, "When will you be back?"
Josh said, "Friday."
I said, "TOMORROW?? Why are you going down just to come back right away?"
Poor Josh just looked at me, and clearly didn't know what to say.
Richard said, "Erin--it's Monday."

Monday, August 18, 2008


Speaking of stratifying a room...
Imagine if you will, that everyone in the world is either a Pirate or a Ninja.
McClain says that nothing can split a room in half more vehemently than this question.
Is he right?
I'm a Pirate. Obviously.
Which are you? Why?

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Book Review

Synopsis: The girls are at it again with their magical jeans. Another exciting summer of adventures and self-discovery awaits.
Readability: Easy peasy. UNLESS you haven't recently read the first book (The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.) I had trouble keeping track of some of the secondary characters and had to consult Lauren and Mandi occasionally.
Predictability: Oh, what do you think? It was exactly what I expected.
Couldn't Put it Down Factor: I had no trouble putting this one down.
Recommend it?: Oh, sure.
Overall Rating: Three stars. Middle of the road. I've found that there are very few things that unite a room of young women more quickly than asking, "Have you read the 'Pants' books?," because everybody--and I mean EVERYBODY has. So...if you are one of those people, I'm sorry. I just thought it was, "eh." I mean, I'm glad I read it, but I can't say I'm better for it. How's that for lukewarm sentiment?

Friday, August 15, 2008

For Carla

There are so many things to talk about here: Oh, and Merry Christmas to YOU.

I wanna tell the world!

Yesterday morning, I had my first ever (EVER) success with self-tanner.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

0% Body Fat

Sometimes when I'm watching gymnastics or swimming, I think to myself, "Man. If I had to wear that little tiny outfit, I would be so self conscious!"
Then I think, "Shoot. If I looked like that, I would never get dressed."
You'd come over to my house and I'd be all naked and stuff.
I'd be hangin' around drinking my iced coffee, not jiggling.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Optical Illusion

Last night on the way home from dinner with a friend, I got "stuck" behind a solar powered car. He was going about 45 miles per hour on I-94 heading west.
He finally pulled over and I passed him to realize that he was just a doofus with two aluminum ladders strapped to the roof of his Dodge Neon.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Wrong Blog

I posted about our weekend on the wrong blog.
Check it out.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Pay it Forward

Today at Aldi's, I suffered the humiliation of not having enough money. I was short by about $3.
Of COURSE there were 20 people in line behind me. Of COURSE I was sweating. Of COURSE the baby started fussing.
I asked him to take off the "Orange Coke."
"You mean the Orange Pop?"
"Uh...yeah." (As if this is the time to argue semantics. When I'm sweating profusely and the baby barfs all over herself.)
"That brings us to $60.54."
"I only have $60. That's IT."
"No change or anything?" Seriously? SERIOUSLY?
"No change or anything."
"Here, sweetheart, I have fifty cents for you," says the gray-haired tattoed man behind us.
"Oh...are you sure? Really? Thank you so much!"

Tonight, Richard went to get fitted for (another) tux, and a homeless man approached him. After a long story, Rich finally interrupted and said, "Just tell me what you need, man."
"I need $12."
"Well, I don't HAVE $12, but if you're still here when I come out, we'll find a way to take care of you." (To be fair, I had all of Richard's cash--in the form of $60 at Aldi's.)
Of course the man was waiting for him when he came out.
Richard DROVE him to Cub Foods and walked him in and bought him a $20 gift card.
The gentleman started crying, hugged Richard and sent my quiet, sweet husband on his way.

Needs, when legitimate, come in all shapes and sizes, but when needs are met unexpectedly I think the gratitude is the same.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

The answer, my friend...

Do you ever miss one hair on the back of your ankle every time you shave so that when you're walking down the street on a nice day you can feel it blowin' in the wind?
Me neither.

Instant Replay

Tivo + Gymnastics = AWESOME.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Book Review

Synopsis: This is what the back of the book reads. I don't want to risk ruining any of the plot points. "Mack Phillips' youngest daughter, Missy, has been abducted during a family vacation and evidence that she may have been brutally murdered is found in an abandoned shack deep in the Oregon wilderness. Four years later, in the midst of his Great Sadness, Mack receives a suspicious note, apparently from God, inviting him back to that shack for a weekend."
Without ruining too much, I do just want to add that the main point in the novel is that terrible things happen because we live in a fallen world, not because God wills them to happen, and he will pursue his purposes through our fallen world and through unspeakable tragedies despite our inability to see his greatest good.
Readability: Easily written and therefore easily readable, but the topics covered in this novel (that's right, it's a work of FICTION--please bear that in mind) are so heavy that I frequently found myself needing to take a break.
Predictability: I suspected the ending, but I was pleasantly surprised by it nonetheless.
Couldn't Put it Down Factor: Like I said, I wanted to keep reading, but needed to digest this one frequently.
Recommend it?: YES. Yes, YESSS! Please go buy this book. Though I have some problems with the theology presented here, it really challenges my views on God and the way he loves us and the way he loves the trinity. I have never read something that makes me see God as such a loving friend as he is presented in this text. The basics of God's love are represented here, and because of that, I am willing to overlook some theological weirdness and a sometimes irreverent treatment of God, and would wholeheartedly recommend this read to anyone. ANYONE. Please be warned, however, that the first quarter of the book does indeed deal with the kidnapping of a little girl, which is hard to stomach, but the pain and agony of losing a child is such a small portion of this novel that it is survivable (just like it is for Mack!).
Overall Rating: Four stars. Minus one for the theology, and I have to admit that something JUST doesn't sit quite right with me on this one. I don't know what or why, though.
Special note: I am aware that this book is surrounded by controversy. I have spent a significant amount of time reading other people's reviews, and have determined that what you think about this one is up to you (just like your relationship with God). It challenged me in the way I see God, and I appreciate it for that fact. If you have read, are reading or want to read this book and want to talk about it, I am REALLY interested in other people's opinions about this one. Please contact me!

VBS Wrap Up

Yesterday I had the pleasure of washing my boys hands with vanilla water and tellilng each one that "Jesus gives you the sweet promise of heaven."
Following that, two of our boys asked Jesus into their hearts.
It totally made my exhaustion worth it!
When I started to tear up because of the emotion of the day, the boys said, "Mrs. D, what's wrong? What's the matter?" I said, "Sometimes Jesus just makes you so happy that you can't help but cry."
It was a very good week.

Since I don't have permission from any of my kiddos parents to post their photos, here is a photo of SJ and me enjoying our picnic lunch after the big wrap up.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Magic Beans

I discovered something today at a popular department store:
I don't need a new bathing suit to make me look like I just had a baby.
I can do that in a bathing suit I bought last summer.
Aaaaany old suit will do.


Today on the way home from VBS I realized that it's only three hours long.
Until this morning, I sincerely thought it was more like 6 hours long.

Please don't get me wrong--I'm having a great time. I am in LOVE with my boys (who can either sing or dance, but not both--oh, my heart! They try SO hard.).
They have spent the week trying to pronounce my last name, and today one of them asked me if he could be my Mr. Dayvooshavoosh. I told him I didn't think my husband would appreciate that and he said, "You're married??!!" He then proceeded to hold my hand for the rest of the morning. Does it get any cuter than that? (Carla says I only need to worry if he brings a ring tomorrow. Haha!)
Finally, I said, "I should have just told you all that my name was Mrs. SMITH!" That got a laugh. : )
Oh, I'm happy. And tired. And happy.

Monday, August 04, 2008


Mommy's tiiiiired.
Day one at VBS was a huge success.
Here is what we did:
Sit on your line.
Stand on your line.
Sit on your line.
Stand on your line.
Sit on your--
just kidding! Stand up!
Here's some...GLITTER!!!
Sit down.
Stand up.
Go home.

Bring Mommy a margarita.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Vee Bee Ess

Vacation Bible School starts tomorrow morning.
I L.O.V.E. VBS. Love.
I am so excited.
If you think of us, please pray for us. Pray that God would use me and alllllll the other volunteers for His glory in these kids lives. Please pray, also that lives would be changed, that God's spirit would be in every exciting detail, and that our focus will remain on Him.

Thank you, Lord, for the opportunity to serve You in this way.
Please make avery action, word and moment count.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

I always have the best ideas!

Before Lauren said the title above, she said, "You know what they should invent? They should invent a birth control where the placebo pill is PAMPRIN."
Then she said, "I'm gonna market that. Tell your blog friends that my idea is off. limits."

Book Review

Q is for Quarry by Sue Grafton
Synopsis: Kinsey Millhone, private detective, is hired by two retired police officers who want to solve a case that has been in their craw for almost twenty years. They need Kinsey to do the legwork to help figure out who murdered a young girl in 1969 and dumped her body in a quarry owned, interestingly enough, by Kinsey's estranged family. Based on a true story (creeeeepy) and placed by Grafton in 1987.
Readability: Kinsey is one of my oldest literary friends, so it was almost soothing to read and hear her voice and dry humor again. Finding out information about her family, too, was such a breath of fresh air! Like learning something new about a best friend.
Predictability: I had the wrong guy! I was pleased that I didn't know whodunnit. Grafton did not let me down.
Couldn't Put it Down Factor: Four out of Five. Five out of Five for the last 100 pages. Stayed up til 2am to finish. : )
Recommend it?: Absolutely. I would recommend anything by Grafton. Watch out for some f-words, and pretty grizzly details about Jane Doe, however.
Overall Rating: Five stars. I just love this series.

Friday, August 01, 2008


Richard is out of town until Sunday, so it's just me and SJ for the weekend.
Today after he left, I treated myself to clean, crispy bed sheets straight from the clothesline outside.
Hel-LOOO middle of the bed.