Showing posts from September, 2010

Ironic, Pathetic, and a little bit Funny

There's a funny little glitch on the right now. It has my LDS Church articles coming up under the category of Sex/Relationships- Abstinence. Gotta love the irony in that. (For the record, I've only asked them about 20 times to please move me back over to Religion-Western Religions- Christianity where I belong!)
As a result the following is currently the head photo bar under Roanoke Sex and Relationships-

I couldn't be more proud!
(I'd link it so you could see it yourself, but I'm hoping that before most of you get there, they will have fixed it! Also, it comes up with your local community, not mine. So it would be a worthless link! Also, I do NOT need that getting any SEO help!)

Fresh, new writing up on the Examiner

I've done a lot of writing lately! Will you click the little linkies so I can get paid for all my work??

Mormon General Conference (the where and how)
Mormons- they're just like you and me!

How to use social media for job hunting
Foursquare for businesses (and fun) 
Blogging for money


Buca di Beppo on CityDeals!

Buca di Beppo (ONE OF MY MOST FAVORITE RESTAURANTS EVER) has A KILLER DEAL on CityDeals. For a limited time when you buy one $20 Buca di Beppo Gift Card you get (2) FREE movie ticketsto the theater of your choice. This offer is 1 per household, so choose an option below (sorry, you can only buy a package for 1 movie theater). Regal Cinemas, United Artists and Edwards Theaters AMC Theaters Cinemark and Century Theaters This deal is 57% off face value of the gift card and movie tickets. Prices on movie tickets vary from one market to the next, but regardless, dinner and a movie for $20 just doesn't happen anymore! The gift card is a plastic Buca di Beppo gift card just like is sold at their restaurants, so it can be used with coupons (sign up for their email blast on the Buca di Beppo website to receive coupons by email and save even more on this deal!). BUY THIS DEAL HERE!!!

31 Days of Service and Kindness

Just 3 more days till 31 Days of Service and Kindness begin. I am really looking forward to this challenge! I've been looking for different ways and places to help. Part of me is sad just how much there is to do out there. Part of me can't wait to see what it feels like to spend a month helping others.
Some of the things I have planned-
volunteer at homeless shelter
volunteer at animal rescue shelter
logistics work for a charity
promote a charity
make presents for some cute, unsuspecting kids
clean an unsuspecting person's house
make meals for someone
do my weekly church service

As you can see, I'm not going crazy here. I'm sure there will be more than a few days where I will do a random act of kindness instead of a scheduled act of service. And there is nothing wrong with that!

And now, before I kick off my 31 Days, I'm wondering if any of my friends know how to make a logo for me? I'd love a custom header or badge or logo for the 31 days. I know how to do…

Near death experiences and other tales from my weekend

I will start by saying the good news is that this story has a happy ending. Assuming you think me living through it is a happy ending that is.
For the past month I've been very excited to take off a few days and drive up to DC. I just needed a break from Roanoke, and wanted to see "my" town, be around other fun single adults, and just feel fun again. In Roanoke I feel like a daughter, granddaughter, sister, and cousin. I very rarely feel like a fun single woman.
So off I went yesterday, excited to go to dinner with friends, and looking forward to going to Adams Morgan- one of my favorite ethnic neighborhoods in DC. I was wearing a favorite pair of shoes I have worn a million times. But every once in a while my feet rebel and in spite of there being no good reason for it, my feet suddenly and very rapidly get covered in painful blisters. So there I am in a walking area, and my feet are starting to bleed (this is after just a few blocks of walking! nothing major!). I tough…

the trouble with a blog is

The trouble with a blog is that sometimes when you are frustrated, annoyed, sad, overwhelmed, or even exuberantly happy, that you want to share the details as to why. The problem being that sometimes you just can't for fear of hurting the wrong person, sending the wrong signal, or not being at liberty to be completely open about someone else's situation.
And so tonight I sit here under a self-imposed gag order trying so hard not to say what it is I want to say. So forgive me for not sharing any details, and only sharing my feelings.

If you hurt a child, you deserve to die. The end.
If I had treated someone as rudely as I have been treated recently, I would be surprised if I had any friends at all. And I sure as hell wouldn't expect politeness in return.
Sometimes you have to wonder how much heart break one heart can bear.

Open mouth, insert words

Under most circumstances I would have to say that I am far better at writing than I have ever been at speaking. I tend to prefer to write what I need from others, rather than have to actually say it to them. I like being able to think it through slowly, edit myself, and make sure I say it just right.
That was until this week. More than a few times in the past week I have managed to cause serious confusion when the other party didn't understand what I was talking about. To make matters worse, they were all instances where I put a great deal of effort into wording things just right so as to ensure no mistakes.
On top of everything else I've come to realize just how much I hate and avoid confrontation. Oh and saying no. I really and truly suck at saying no.
Recently I've had to take some measures to eliminate a certain person from having too much access to me. This person's total lack of communication and writing skills has resulted in more than a few hurt feelings. But …

a Little update

I can't tell you how much I miss this kid! For those of you new to the blog, the kiddo in these pictures is known to the blogosphere as "Little." Back so long ago in Utah (can you believe it has been 6 months since I left?) I volunteered with the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Utah program. She was my Little Sister. Here on the blog we just like to call her 'Little.'
Little and I still keep in touch, but not nearly as much as I wish we could. She's a big fancy 8th grader now, with social commitments, a bass trombone, and a life. Just as soon as I have a paycheck, I'm buying her a cell phone just so we can talk more often! We do keep in touch via Skype, phone calls, and the occasional email.
A few months ago I got a gem of an email from her. I've been meaning to share it for a while. It basically went like this-
"have you seen those i heart boobies bracelets? i have one because they support breast cancer and my best friends mom died from breast can…

Not such a teenage wasteland

Yesterday, like most Saturdays, I found myself at my uncle's house. I was downstairs in the party room with 20 men watching the BYU football game. Upstairs my aunt was hosting a large baby shower. When reality sunk in and there was no denying BYU was in a hole they couldn't dig out of, I went upstairs to visit the womenfolk. And there I saw this beautiful woman. She looked so familiar to me! I could not place her at all. Much to my surprise she immediately said that I looked familiar to her as well. My aunt introduced us and immediately we knew each other. I love moments like that!
We both grew up in the same church area. I was from Centreville, she was from Warrenton. She is about 2 years older than me. She was tall, thin, beautiful, with blond hair I envied, and a year round perfect tan. (Traits I see she has now passed on to her cute kids.) She was one of the older girls that I looked up to and adored as a teenage girl. I wondered if I would ever possibly outgrow my awkwar…

This week I resolve to-

1. Not whine or complain, not even to sympathetic ears. (Or ears I think are sympathetic!)
2. Recycle, reduce, reuse, and begin composting for the first time.
3. Do something substantive about my back pain (and not just whine about it or drug myself up).
4. Seriously consider legally registering my car.
5. Not allow myself to get hurt by other's choices.
6. Keep my mind on what matters and what my goals really are.
7. Do at least one thing each day that makes me happy.
8. Not eat as much fast food.
9. Work 11 hours each day, so that I don't have to work much on Friday.
10. Enjoy the big things and the little things!

Guest Blogging Away!

I'm the guest blogger over at "We Talk of Christ, We Rejoice in Christ" today. This is the blog of Jocelyn (Hatch) Christensen, an old friend of mine from "Langley days." (Which means I knew her back in DC when we were both in the same singles' congregation.) She is doing 30 days of guest bloggers on the subject of the Family: Proclamation to the World. What on earth can a single woman have to say about a document about families? Well, go read it and find out what I said!
Oh and she's giving away cool stuff too!

Happy Birthday Natalie!

Happy Birthday to my favorite little sister and mother of my nephews. You are my favorite person to talk to and my closest friend. I don't know what I would ever do without you. I'm so proud of you for how hard you are working in school right now. I know it isn't easy or fun for you. Good work on the cute kids. Now, come visit me. I miss you.

If you know and love my sister, leave her a little love note in the comments below!!

Let's Talk TV!

Another new TV season is upon us! I do love the first few weeks of a new TV season. This year will be very interesting and different though- I don't have a TV. But that won't stop me from catching only what I want to see on Hulu and iTunes. One of the more unusual parts of not having a TV means I don't see the commercials for the new upcoming shows. So I need your recommendations! Tell me what has looked interesting to you!

Shows I know I will be watching-
The Good Wife

Modern Family
The Office
30 Rock
Glee (I can't say this in my head without doing it in the silly high pitched shout voice from the show)

Shows I will try out, but may be breaking up with-
Grey's Anatomy (seriously- that season finale was a little too much for me. it is just a little too over the top sometimes.)
Law and Order: SVU (I'll at least be watching the premiere to see crazy Joan Cusack)
The Mentalist

Shows I will try a few more times, but I jus…

Curious and curiouser

I can only imagine what the elderly Indian man in the corner store thought when the adult woman in the bright red Wonder Woman t-shirt showed up 2 seconds before closing at 10 pm, bought only a chocolate milk, and chugged it before leaving the store.

Peace Corps

I officially turned in my application to the Peace Corps this week. TADUM!!! I'm rather proud of myself for finally doing this. The decision to leave the world behind for 27 months without pay isn't exactly an easy one. Now, before you get too excited with me, let me point out that it will be MONTHS before I will hear back from them. And that I just barely made the deadline to get in for their July 2011 deployment. So this ain't no fast moving ship. And to answer the inevitable question, no I have no idea where they will send me, if in fact they pick me at all. Did you know the Peace Corps gets 15,000 applicants a year for 4,000 spots? So while I'm announcing I applied, I'm also putting myself out there for a little humiliation because I may not get picked.
In the meantime, while I'm all excited and gung ho on the Peace Corps, I looked up PC blogs. And oh my goodness!! I've found lots! If you look here on my right hand sidebar, towards the bottom, you will…

31 Days of Charity and Service

I am so happy that I've had 4 people pick days to do an act of service and charity in October! I hope there are more people out there that will help out!
As I said before, during the 31 Days of Charity and Service I am asking my friends and readers to sign up for one day during October to do an act of service/charity. For the days that no one signs up, I will do something. I am prepared to do something every day. But I am hoping that you will all rise to the occasion and do a day for me!
Why am I doing this? Well, why not? Why not make a commitment to make good things happy every single day for a month? So many wonderful things have happened to me over the past year thanks to other people's acts of kindness and charity. I want to give back and do my part to help others. And this is the best way I can really think of to "pay it forward" and help others.
When I first had this idea I was going to do it all by myself. And I still am planning on doing something every d…

the best darn spaghetti sauce you'll ever try

Friends, because I like you, and you like me, I'm going to share with you the best spaghetti sauce recipe you will ever try. I made this yesterday for my sister and me, and seriously, we almost didn't have enough to actually put on the noodles. We kept snitching some while I was making it. It was the best sauce I have ever had in my entire life.

And now I will share with you the secret.

Erin's From Scratch Spaghetti Sauce
1. Heat 2 tb olive oil in pan.
2. Dice up half of a red or vidalia onion. Toss into the oil.
3. Add a bay leaf, basil leaf, and a leaf or two of oregano. And the not all that secret ingredient of 5 big beautiful bulbs of roasted garlic.
4. Before you do all of that peel and cut up 10 roma tomatoes. The darker red the better. Cut them into small pieces, not quite diced.
5. When the frying onions and greenery look good and drowned and dead, add in the tomatoes.
6. Bring to a boil.
7. Then turn it down to simmer, and let it simmer, uncovered, for about 2 ho…

Virginia Beach

Last week, in spite of the pending Hurricane Earl, I took off to go visit my dear cousin C who lives in VA Beach. Lucky for me (more for her) she lives about 1 mile from the beach and boardwalk! I spent a great deal of time sitting by the sea, thinking, writing, ogling, and thinking some more.
Here are a few images from my trip!
 I had the beach mostly to myself. There were a few other families out there, but it was nice and quiet with lots of space to spread out. Its "moments of clarity" like these that inspire creativity and emotion in me.

 I found this to be an interesting sight! The sign on the chair explains that red flags mean there are dangerous conditions. Gotta love how the flag is very weather-beaten, and the chair/stand is leaning heavily to one side! This was taken about 6 hours before the supposed hurricane (which was just a tropical storm when it got to us) was due to hit.

The morning after the storm my cousin C and I took a nice long walk on the beach. It was by …

I am me.

I have been creating this list of things that I know to be me.

I am happiest by the water.
I feel far more creative by the water or on top of a mountain.
I love spaghetti. Especially when it is made in authentic Italian style.
I can unleash writer's block with a fresh new notebook and a pretty blue ink pen. I write almost everything out by hand before I type it.
I am a vivid dreamer. There are nights I can't wait to fall asleep because I know there are amazing things waiting for me. And there are nights I intentionally take sleeping pills because I'd rather not "give birth to airplanes." (Yes, that was a recurring dream of mine. I'd wake up terrified of how exactly I was supposed to push an airplane out in child birth.)
I really hate sitting in the back seat of most cars. Very rarely do I find a driver that doesn't drive me crazy! (no pun intended)
I prefer high brow or nerdy humor over potty humor every day.
I value my creative and alone time.
I can…

The best is yet to come

Lately my life has been one big struggle with finding happiness in my current state of affairs. As has been mentioned ad nauseum around here, I am not living anything close to the life I would like to be living. I struggle to call my new situation "home." I have little control over being able to get the things that I want. I feel lost and alone, while simultaneously feeling like I live in a fish bowl. It is an interesting contradiction in feelings.
I try to choose to be happy. I choose to serve others. I choose to find one thing in each day, no matter how small or inconsequential, to be happy about. Sometimes it helps, sometimes it just reminds me of how hard it is to find something to be happy about.
So off I went today to see "Eat, Pray, Love." I have not yet read the book. And this is not intended to be a book or movie review. But I did have the sneaky suspicion that I would identify well with the main character, and that I did. Believe me, if I had the money I…

31 Days of Charity and Service

Friends, I'd like to invite you to join me for 31 Days of Charity and Service in October.
During the month of October I will be doing one act of service or charity each day. I've given myself a few rules, such as donating $5 to a homeless person counts, as does feeding my sister's lizard. But I'm hoping to do more than that. I'm hoping to find a different way every day for 31 days to serve other people.
And I'd like to ask you to help me. Will you pick a day and perform an act of charity on my behalf? You won't have to blog about it, unless you want to. (And I'd love it if you did.) Just pick a day in October, and perform an act of charity or service in whatever way you wish. I'll be adding a toolbar along the side of my blog for the next few months so that you can see who is doing what which days.
Please, if you are interested in helping me, let me know!
Wouldn't it be amazing if we could get 31 acts of charity and service??

Best Conversation of the Day

While visiting my grandmother at the nursing home...
Me: Well, Grammy, I better get going. I need to go feed [my sister] Stephanie's bearded dragon and go buy some groceries.
Grammy: Ok, thanks for coming.
(I hug her. Then take a minute to straighten up her room and turn to leave.)
Grammy (her voice full of alarm): Wait! What's Stephanie doing with a dragon?!


Mindy Gledhill's new single "Anchor"
Home- the place where you belong. A place that is familiar and comfortable. The place where your shoes have a spot, and you know where your favorite sweatshirt is hiding. A place that you love and you fit in.

It hit me hard this morning as I was packing to leave my cousin's house at the beach that I don't have a "home." I have a place where I am grateful to be staying. But it isn't my home. My belongings are in boxes in storage in another state, some of my belongings are packed in the back of a non-working truck (for safekeeping, believe it or not), some are in the basement of a house, and very little of them are with me. The only things with me are my clothes that are kept in big Tupperware bins. They are not unpacked and hanging in closets. Why? Because it is someone else's home, and my stuff doesn't belong there.
I am grateful for the place where I am staying. It is truly kind and generous of others to…

I Feel Lucky!

Talk about a week full of highs and lows. It started with a lot of high hopes, followed by some huge disappointments, with plenty of frustrations and broken dreams in the middle. An emotional roller coaster to put it mildly. With every high and low, lecture and compliment, comes a large dose of self-doubt and questioning. Am I going the right direction? Will I ever have any control over my future again? How much longer do I have to wait till I have some answers? Have I learned from this trial? And my favorites- why me? And sometimes- why not me?!

Amidst these questions and peaks and valleys I gladly left town to go visit my cousin at the beach this week. If I was going to be forced into a holding pattern, waiting for answers to questions I never wanted to ask, I may as well do it on a beach, and not sitting alone in a big house in Roanoke, right?

Of course, there was also this minor inconvenience called Hurricane Earl heading our way as well. This isn't the first time a hurricane…