Dear blog,

Well, here we are in 2014.  It amazes me how the years can change.  Wasn’t it just 1996?  How did we get to almost the mid 2010s?

Anyway, not much is happening today.  I may have burned just half my face yesterday as we watched the Sun Bowl in El Paso.  Did you hear the Bruins won?  Yep, it was a good game for us.  Sorry for the end of your year VA Tech but today is a new year.

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It is a bit difficult to see in the picture, but I have a faint outline of my sunglasses which I was wearing the whole time.

It’s good to see you 2014.  I know that this will be a crazy full interesting year.  How do I know that?  It’s simple.  I have a savior who dreams big and plans big and he wants that for my life.  I just have to let him move.  Well get ready 2014 because I feel like shaking and grooving.

Oh and how many other aunt are blessed to have their nephew chilling on the couch with them?  I know… it is awesome and you wish you were me.

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See?  He is pretty much the best.  I am very lucky to have him and his brother in my life.

Okay 2014, let’s roll.

Love, Erin

The aftermath: NaBloPoMo and Versatile Blogger Award

The last post was published, the imaginary crowd roared and silence fell on me.

With a margin of error measuring an hour or so, I finished NaBloPoMo.  30 days, 30 posts, and where does that leave me?  A bit exhausted.  Not from blogging.  Most days I was creatively inspired but on a few…. it was mere words to achieve a daily blogging schedule.  I spent more time exploring what people wrote daily and tried to think about what I wanted to share – thought or ideas – even planning some posts in advance.

I’m exhausted from tech week.  Fellow theater people will know how that last week of rehearsals before an opening can do you in.  This one has been nothing but the norm.  Coming home from a 12 hour road trip (yea vacation!) started the sequence of not posting so far in December.  Adding a later rehearsal time has meant I have slept less and in my free hours I have no ambition to write.  No fear the show opens tomorrow and soon my evenings will be free.

In addition to not being able to write, I was nominated for the Versatile Blogger Award.  Say what???

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A fellow blogger thought I was pretty spiffy and let me know by that nomination.  Thank you Priceless Joy!  You can see her stuff at http://pricelessjoy.co/.  I personally think they are fun entries and her drawings are great.

So according to the rules of the Versatile Blogger Award ( http://versatilebloggeraward.wordpress.com/ ) I am to nominate 15 bloggers and then share 7 things about myself.  Well, here’s the problem.  I have only been actively looking at the blogging community since I started NaBloPoMo.  I originally started this blog to help share things I was experiencing while I lived overseas.  Seeing that I like it, I have continued writing and have only recently started following other writers.  So I don’t have a full 15 to nominate, but here are a few that I really enjoy:

vivace con brio http://vivaceconbrio.wordpress.com/ – Lindsey writes about her life

These Are the Days http://kimcourtblog.wordpress.com/ – Kim is a big advocate of adoption

Mouthfuls & Mutterings http://mouthfulsandmutterings.wordpress.com/ – Valerie, a friend of 10 years, sharing recipes and life journeys

Jezbr http://jezbr.wordpress.com/ – Jeremy, a friend from Australia, share his thoughts, adventures, and life in missions

 

I know…. that’s only four blogs, but they are four really good blogs and I hope you enjoy reading them as I do.

Here are 7 bits about me:

1.  I am a bi-coastal kid and self imposed third culture dweller having spent numerous years in California, Virginia, Germany and Australia.

2.  If I was able to pick a place to live where I’ve lived before, I would pick Germany in a heart beat.

3.  I was the type of kid who never wanted to talk to the neighbors – ever!  If our ball went over the fence, I was more than happy to leave it there.

4.  Want to make me happy?  Give me a diet Pepsi.  I know there are lots of unhealthy things in them that could kill me at an early age but it seriously puts me in a happy place.

5.  My favorite animal is the cat, but closely second is the zebra.  If I could touch a Zebra some day… glory!

6.  I would like to visit South America and Africa by the time I’m 35, and Antarctica before I die.

7.  I have willing eaten chicken’s blood and organs in Thai soup, while I was in Thailand.  Gotta gel with the culture!

 

One final bit of information – upcoming next week I will be participating in a 12 blogs of Christmas link up.  What to meet some more fun and interesting people, then check it out:

http://bekahsresolve.blogspot.com/2013/11/get-ready-for-12-days-of-christmas-link.html

Oh joy!  That means more future entries from me.  It’s a good thing, I promise.

 

 

Christmas music

Hot button topic – Christmas music.

I’m listening to Frank Sinatra singing “Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let is Snow” and other songs thanks to Spotify.  I have no problem listening to Christmas music even though November is not done.  One of the stations out of El Paso has been playing Christmas Carols for the past two weeks.

Now some of you, I am sure, are at arms.  How dare you listen to Christmas music right now.  The horrors!  Can’t you even wait until December.

No, I can’t.  For me the music is a season change signal.  I really love the time period of November to the end of December.  Celebrating life, family, friendships, and remembering why this time is so important for me – it signals the start of Jesus’ time here on earth.  Yes, Easter is more powerful with the conquering of death, but for me, I feel a deeper sense of peace and joy as I think about how my Saviour started his life.

It’s the crispness of the air, the clearness of the sky, and the joy in the songs that I love.

If you don’t agree with me, that’s okay.  I’ll keep enjoying my music.  Frank is pretty good company!

How important is a name?

“What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet;”  — Juliet, Romeo and Juliet, Act II, Scene II.

 

Sorry, Juliet (and Mr. Shakespeare), but I need to disagree with you on this one.

Yes, I understand that Shakespeare is talking about how, if, Romeo wasn’t a Montague but had a different name, he would still be the same guy Juliet fell in love with, and would no longer be her mortal enemy based on his name.

What I want to talk about is why a name is important.  Let me tell you a story.

I have been working at my job for about a month now.  I work in cafeterias for our school district, and have been subbing for a woman who just had a baby.  As I have gotten to know my co-workers, we have gone through the formalities of, “what is your name?”  It took me a couple of days to remember them.  One of the ladies there kept forgetting my name.  She would be calling for me and I wouldn’t recognize that she was talking to me.  She kept calling, “Megan, Megan!”  Megan?  How is that even close to Erin?  I kept telling her, “No, my name is Erin.”

She just couldn’t get that in her mind.  She would tell me how she didn’t know why but she kept thinking I was Megan.  That went on for about a week.  Finally, her mind recognized my name is Erin, but she decided that she wants to keep calling me Megan.  Like a nickname, and now that I recognize she is talking to me, I will actually respond to Megan.  The only backfiring bit is one of the other woman called me Megan today.  I don’t think she realized what she did.  More random is for some reason she was thinking my name was Ariel.  Ariel?  Really?  Four weeks of Erin and you get Ariel?

So what is the point?  I can hear you asking that.

My point is this.  We identify with our names.  Some of us received our names before we were born, and were addressed as so by our parents.  Our names distinguish us from each other.  There is history that is spoken and future promised by our names.

 

Isaiah 43:1 “But now thus says the Lord, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel:  Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.”

There is heritage in our names!  I honestly believe that our names speak volumes about us.  That when God formed me, he saw me as Erin and saw my future and all the amazing pieces of me that would form my story.

My name, Erin, means Peace.  It also is a name for the country of Ireland.  I can think of many time that people have talked to me about my demeanor, what they fell around me.  I want to honor my name and be a bringer of peace.  Not sure how the Ireland part would fit in…

Looking up the meaning of Megan, I hope that this is what my co-worker saw in me and why she thought it was my name.  Megan means pearl, child of light, strong and capable.  I wouldn’t mind being the bearer of such.  Maybe you even know a Megan and you see these things in her.

One last thought on the point of recognition.  People calling us by our name means they know us.  It almost jolts me when a new group of people starts using my name.  I feel warmed by the fact that they recognize me enough to know my name.  In the sense that I have arrived and people care enough to acknowledge me.  How you choose to address someone carries a lot of weight.

 

 

I just wanted a little giggle today.  Love this video from Simon’s cat.  My apologies if you prefer dogs.

 

 

I don’t know how he does it, but to me the behavior of Simon and his kitten friend as so spot on to real cats!  The rest of the series is just as great.

Over 30 and not married

love birds

 

Marriage, babies, dating… all three a common questions areas when you are meeting someone.  I’ve asked the questions myself.  But when you are past 30, the questions change:

So…. are you married?  No.

How old are you?  Over 30.

No boyfriend?  No.

Don’t you want have babies!?  …….

Ugh.  It gets old.  Look, it isn’t like I am against marriage or boyfriends or babies.  I don’t hide in a cave with the intention of never meeting people.  Yes, I realize that 40 is coming soon.

But seriously, do you have to try to make it sound like I just murdered someone?  Don’t you think I ask myself these sort of questions all the time.  Added to that are the lies that come:

No one likes you.

You are ugly.

You are old.

Your life is over.

Now, today I am not feeling that.  I’m pretty happy with my skin.  My life is interesting – albeit it isn’t where I ever imagined it would be.  I don’t feel like I won’t ever experience marriage or babies most days.  It only gets difficult when my Facebook feed explodes with pregnancy announcements and engagement and wedding pictures.

Look, it’s simple.  My life is my own.  It isn’t my sisters’ life or my girlfriend’s life or any woman who also exists in this world.  None of us will ever have the same story.  We are uniquely designed creations of God.  I without a doubt know that following God means I will have a life that is beyond anything I can imagine.  Maybe that life won’t ever include a husband or a child, but that’s God choice to write or not to write.

So please, don’t treat me like a crazed lunatic when I say, “Yes, I am over 30 and I am not married.”

 

Veteran’s day

I was a bit annoyed by our local paper.  Let me correct that.  I was a bit annoyed by a comment I read in our local paper.  There is a column where people can write blurbs on articles and activities around the city.  The person who annoyed me decided to grip about Veteran’s day.  They were complaining about how could we think it was okay to celebrate war and that Veteran’s day should be no longer.

I’m sorry sir, but I certainly do not feel the same.  There have been many people who have given up their time and lives so that you can write your simpering little complaint.  Would you prefer to live in a country where you would only be protecting yourself?  Would you like to tell me how my grandfather was glorifying war be being in an airplane that flew over Germany?  Maybe you would like to talk to all the family members of people who have lost loved ones and tell them that their loved ones shouldn’t be remembered or honored.

Go ahead, sit around and write your little snarky complaint.  I’m sorry for you to not be able to understand why we need to honor and remember veteran’s.  Oh and no thank you to you, but I enjoyed my free Apple Bee’s burger today.

*** I guess you could say I was more than just a little bit annoyed.***

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Picture of my mom and I from October 2003.  I had already been deployed for eight months in Kuwait and Iraq and was given two weeks to go see my family.  Then it was back to the desert to finish up the year.