Wednesday, March 30, 2011


I try really hard not to label my kids, at least not while they're listening. I don't want them to think that's how they should always be. For example: if I said, "George is my shy child."
I would feel like a fail-mom if he never made any friends because of his tendency towards being shy.

But, since my kiddos hardly read this blog, I feel I can spurt about anything on here without them knowing. Mom-Of-The-Year goes to me, I know. I pretty much dropped that award in my pocket years ago.

So let me just say, my kiddos are gloriously different from one another.
Sometimes I love it. Other times, not so much.

The other day I overheard Henry say to George:
 "Hey Georgie, what happens when you're feeling really grateful for something, but you really have to toot?"

Did your eye brows just screw together in a "Did I seriously just hear that?"
Mine certainly did.

Henry's answer: "You have a gratitoot!"

I'm not going to lie, a laugh burst from my lips and I thought to myself, that kid is definitely mine.
I'm so grateful to have Henry. He's clever, witty, charming and always fun.

Happy eight years old, kiddo!

Friday, March 25, 2011

book love.

When I first read My Fair Godmother, I died over it. I laughed and cried and wanted more, more, more.

I told friends to read it and then I searched out, stalked, and befriended the author. It's been almost two years since all that happened and I'm finally so super excited to tell you that the second book in the series is coming out. I believe it will be as epically humorous and romantic and adorable as the first. And, she's giving it away FREE!

Cut and paste the above address in your browser to try for a free copy of:
Don't you just love the book cover? Sigh.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


As if I didn't need another reason to break Lent. Brekke, an amazing photographer and friend, showed up on my doorstep today with a lovely box of these goodies (see images below). Believe me when I say they smell as good as they look. So here's the new motto of my little ghetto blog:

If You Bring It, I Will Shoot It.

Do you think it's too Kevin Costner? Nah, I didn't think so either.

So, if you perchance happen to make something mouth-watering and ridiculously good-looking, don't hesistate to stop by my house. I take a couple shots, more than a couple bites, and we'll call it good.

luv, erin

And in case you were wondering, the cupcakes on the left are blueberry cream cheese, and the ones on the right are peanut butter chocolate. Terrible, right? Ugh. Talk about kill my Lent with a fiery vengence.

Monday, March 21, 2011

popcorn and parties

Every year March rolls around and my stomach clenches in knots. You see, I lucked out in the birthday department. My oldest two boys are born 2 years and 4 days apart. So every other March (we have friend's parties on the even years), I get to throw one wildly enormous party or two parties 4 days apart. Neither option thrills me, but this year I opted for the easy route.

Two parties. Both a trip to the movie theater so my house stay's intact.

A Movie Party! Easy right? Well, not so much. Herding 15 kids to the movie theater and back wasn't my finest mommy moment. I'll spare you the details, but I will share my one epiphany of the week. In photoshop I made these nifty popcorn invitations, and then I googled popcorn cupcakes and came up with a plan to make what you see below. If you like it, let me know and I'll be glad to pass along the party invite in a digital file.

Oh, and if you want to check out my George-a-pie's pics, they're up on my photo blog:

Thursday, March 10, 2011

withdrawal. an ode to sugar.

I am
a crack addict
not really, but holy hell it feels like it

one of the lovely ladies at the PG Rec Center ate a doughnut!
In front of me.
Can you believe that?
The sweet smell of sugar glaze was like fire to my nose.
Burning my olfactory system with maple sugary goodness.


Itch. Scratch. Itchy. Scratch. Scratch. 

I want me some SUGAR!

Withdrawals suck. 
38 days from now, I'm going to feel like a friggin' rockstar. 

38 days to go. 

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

LENT. die sugar die.

Lent, typically followed by Catholics, starts tomorrow.

I am not Catholic, however, I see the need in my life and my family's to break our addiction to sugar. And I figure, why not do it now while a great deal of other people are doing the same. Mark and I started our quest to cut sugar at the beginning of the year, and we did awesome for quite some time. The last few weeks, littered with holidays and vacations, haven't been the best. And I'll tell you, I can feel the difference.
When I eat a lot of sugar, frankly, I feel like Poo!
I'm tired. Blue. Un-motivated. Sluggish. Mean.
Pretty much, life sucks. Watch the video, you'll see what I'm talking about.
So, though I know cutting the sugar addiction is hard (I've traveled this road before), I also know it's better for my well-being.

I'm not saying that all sugars like those found in fruit and veggies are bad, but I definitely think rocky road ice cream before bed isn't scoring points with my thighs.

So here's the plan:

40 Days to become a healthier, more-energetic me!

Anything made with High Fructose Corn Syrup
Any processed food that has SUGAR listed as one of the first three ingredients

Are you in?

Sunday, March 06, 2011

to mark.

I know it's cliche it is to say, "time flies," but there isn't another phrase that can accurately describe how fast the years of our marriage have passed. It seems like just yesterday we tied the knot, moved to a cozy apartment in Springville, and started our exciting married life together. It's funny, really, to think of how poor we were back then. How we scraped by on $800 a month. How we once walked by the Springville Taco Bell together and my mouth watered something bad, but it just wasn't in our budget to buy even a taco. How could it be on $800 a month?
We were the poster children for poor married college students. Living on nothing but love.

I used to curse our stinking poorness, and pray for the day when I could go to the grocery store and buy whatever I wanted to buy.

Shari, your older sister, once told me that I'd look back one day and miss the struggle, and the small apartment, and the nights you and I walked up and down the block because that's all we could afford to do.
At the time Shari was talking to me, I thought, Yeah Right! But it's true. Even though I love our lives now, our four kiddoes, our lazy fat dog, our home and careers, I do miss those early days. And at the same time I'm so glad we've moved on. The last dozen years have been littered with trials. Ugh, more than I wish to count. Finances, loss, moving, children, worry, much to remember, and I'm sure there's so much more to come. But the crazy thing is, as I sit here and try to remember all we've been through together I keep getting stuck on the "we." The trials fade from my thoughts and all I see is You.
You, by my side.
That's all that's important.
I'm grateful that you're the one that's gone through it all with me. You are an amazing husband that is my equal, or better, in every way. There isn't a day that goes by when I don't thank the Lord for blessing me you as my companion. I hope our next dozen years will be as wonderfull hard and sweet and rich as the last dozen.

Happy anniversary, Mark. luv, erin

Now, if you've read through all my sap today, and you want to see some amazing pictures of our recent trip to Key Biscayne, Florida, go check out my photo blog:

Friday, March 04, 2011

the book list.

Fact 1. I read a lot.

Fact 2. More often than not, I'm quite opinionated on what I read. However, that being said, I've found that my opinion on books, plots, characters, themes, yada, yada, yada, sometimes, more than other times, differs from what my family and friends think.

So what does that mean?
I like to think it means I know what's right and best, and they know jack squat. But seeing as that may or may not be seen as an abrasive judgement, I've settled on the idea that people all like books for different reasons. (Yep, that's the epiphany, folks. I know, I know, deep thoughts.)

Fact 3. Even though we may not agree on all books, there is a book list (of the best books) that all people should read.

(I see you might take argument with the fact that I named fact 3 a "fact". But, I direct you to the title of this blog, and remind you that it's my blog, so therefore, I have the power of creating "facts." Sorry. That's just the rules. I don't make them...most of the time.)

So what's the point?
The point is I, miss-read-a-lot, have created the book list. Books, that everybody should read, but particularly people who love YA lit. Cool people, like me. Just saying. These are books that have excellent character voice, or amazing plot lines, tension, conflict, a protagonist that speaks to my heart, and so on. Frankly, I love these books, and you should too.

My Top Ten

1. The Giver by Lois Lowry

(One of my first, and all time favorite, dystopic novels.)

2. Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card
(A must read for all high school boys, and girls who think their lives are controlled. Ha, read this and think again.
3. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
(My all time favorite romance. Sigh.)

4. Unwind by Neal Shusterman
(Probably my second favorite dystopic novels. Eerie, and thought-provoking.)

5. Just One Wish by Janette Rallision
(One of my favorite authors. Hilarious, witty, and heart-wrenching at the same time. If you love that book, then also read My Fair Godmother, another amazing book by Janette Rallison.)

6. The Thief, The Queen of Attolia, The King of Attolia
(So I cheated on this one and listed three books. When I first fell in love with this series, I read the thrid book first. To be fair, it's my favorite. However, you can't just read the third. I suggest when you sit down to read these books you read the first, second and third all together as if reading a giant book. It's so worth it.)

7. Graceling by Kristen Cashore

8. Birthmarked by Caragh Obrien
(It takes a lot for me to give a book five stars on Goodreads. But I gave this book the full five stars. Sidenote: if you're not on Goodreads, than you should join now.)

9. The Hunger Games (Trilogy) by Suzanne Collins
(I'm not saying that I love the third book, but you can't just read one in three, can you?)

10. Mistborn (Trilogy) by Brandon Sanderson
(I never thought I liked epic fantasy, that is, until I read the Mistborn Trilogy.)

Bonus: I'd Tell You I Love You, But Then I'd Have to Kill You (Series) by Ally Carter
(The series, similar to Harry Potter, starts with a light hearted learning premise, and around book four the stakes get higher and the mood darker. I absolutely love this series.)

There you have it, my ten, plus a few, favorites. There were at least a couple dozen more I could've added to this list, but I figured you have to start somewhere. No go, read, and let me know how much you love these books too.

Thursday, March 03, 2011

where i've been.

Weather Forecast: It's yucky. Yep, that's the technical term when the wind's blowing and rain pelts my windows in angry fat drops. The sky, not the lovely inky blue of Key Biscayne, but a mottled gray, mocks me and my newly acquired tan. Fine, sunburn. Dang, I thought my part Hawaiian skin would hold up better than that. I guess I should've listened to that creepy 90's song and actually worn sunscreen.

Here's where I've been for the last week.
Did you miss me? Loathe the cyber-silence I left you in?
(No need to answer that question, lest I fall into an even deep pit of moaning and misery.) 

But, I'm back now.
You've been warned.
Bring on the posts.

luv, erin