Sunday, April 29, 2012

Let the Countdowns Begin!

What am I looking forward to in the upcoming days, months, years? Read on!

How many days until:

3--Long Beach. I get to go with our AVID classes to CSULB. I'm excited to show these kiddos my college and share some of my memories with them. Not to mention, we get to go to the aquarium afterward!

32--Kiddos' last day of school. I can't believe it--it feels like the year just started.

33--I leave for Romania! Read more about my trip here!

68--Mama and I head out to Washington D.C. and New York. I am so so so so excited. What MUST we do while we're there?? Comment and let me know!

86--American Idol tour. Well, we haven't purchased tickets yet, but it seems like a good idea. Right? Anyone want to go? :)

88--THE OLYMPICS!!!!!!! This is the part where I will not leave the house, not answer my phone, and not turn on the computer. :::obsessed::: Read more about my obsession here!

313--Brother's wedding! I CANNOT wait for this day!!! Read more about him and his awesome fiance here!

What are YOU looking forward to in the upcoming days, months, years?

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Why I’m NOT on E-Harmony (or any other dating site)

I get asked this question a lot: why don’t you join (insert dating site here)?

The simple answer—I don’t want to.

So, of course, that answer is always followed up with more questions…

Do I think there’s something wrong with online dating? Not if you do it with wise discretion, no. I’ve known lots of people who have done it and are happily married or happily dating, and I’m seriously so happy for them.

Am I afraid of it? Nope, I wouldn’t say I’m afraid. I would say that it just doesn’t appeal to me.

Why doesn’t it appeal to you? I’m not a “dater.”

Why aren’t you a “dater?” Don’t know. I never really was. I’m not opposed to dating (I've even told a few people lately to feel free to set me up if they come across anyone that'd be a good match), I’ve just never made it a practice to get to know or go out with multiple or many (or any) guys.

Then how are you ever going to get married? Only God knows that one.

And then I get the typical response—don’t you think God could use something like online dating to introduce you to your future husband?

Of course I think he could! I know He could. 

However, I also don’t think that e-harmony is the end all.  God can use e-harmony. God can also use whatever method He wants. He is God…

Well, what if your future husband is on e-harmony and you miss out on him? Really? REALLY? You really think that because I don’t go on e-harmony, I’ll miss out on my husband. Please.

Don’t you think you have to put yourself out there? God’s not just going to drop the perfect man on your doorstep. You know what? He just may. I’ve seen it happen. (He basically dropped Nathan on Nicole's doorstep. You can read more about them here). 

So I go back to my “simple answer”—I just don’t want to.

This isn’t to say that I will always have that response. Maybe God will change my heart one day. Maybe God will use an online dating site to introduce me to my future husband (in the future). But, until I “want to,” until God prompts me to do that, I’m perfectly content to wait and trust in his perfect timing.

Only God knows what the future holds...


....being set up by a friend or family member

...meeting someone at church doorstep

Two things are for certain, God is sovereign, and I'll keep you posted. :) 

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Quite Like, Rather Dislike, Round 1

Yes, Nicole, I stole your title--isn't copying one of the highest forms of flattery? (Read the post that inspired mine here!) Because Nicole is just so cool and her posts are so entertaining to read, I decided to try one of my own.

Quite Like:

Panda Express--it has become my tradition to get a Panda bowl for lunch every Friday, but let's be honest, I could eat it far more often... (aaaand I'm pretty sure they all know me now). :)

My Bleach Pen Tee--how can you not love a super soft, super comfy tee with your own design? Seriously, I'm pretty sure I wear it at least once a week. And, I'll admit, I purchased a few more V-neck men's undershirts today to bleach. They'll be great for Romania (andeveryotherdayoftheyear), right? (Read about my first bleach pen tee here!).

My bed--'nough said.

Rather Dislike:

My Black Steering Wheel--I discovered it just today! Ok, I'm sure I knew that it was black before today, but I FELT it for the first time today. Welcome to summer, Bakersfield! You Bakersfieldians know how it is--take my breath away and drive with the tips of two fingers until the air kicks on hot! Must--get--windshield--screen-NOW! Ouch...

Yes, that does say 98 degrees. :/

Shorts Season--sooo not ready for it. It's not just that I dislike wearing shorts or shopping for them, but I really don't like seeing OTHERS wear them! I can seriously do without your butt cheeks peeking out with every step, your larger than usual thighs making your shorts creep up into the unknown, and your muffin top spilling over the stretched out fabric. Gross. And those who are thin enough to wear short shorts? You still aren't leaving enough up to the imagination, (so to speak) and it ain't pretty! 

Inconsiderate People--welcome to Earth. The world does not revolve around you. 'Nough said. 

Hope you enjoyed my stolen-title-post. Shall I write more in the future?

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

100 More Days...

...until the 2012 Olympics in London. Eeeeeeeeek! I can hardly contain my excitement...

Let me tell you what....I've got the Olympics in me

I caught Olympic fever as a child and it. is. raging. 

I'm hard pressed to find anyone as Olympic obsessed as I am. I'm quite pleased that my friend Ashley feels the same way. We may or may not have already started planning viewing parties, medal tally charts, Olympic cakes, clothing, and the like. 

I'm not sure how I caught this fever, but I don't ever want it to go away! Of course gymnastics is my favorite sport (and my mind is reeling with which five girls will be chosen for the team--did you read that? FIVE...only five!...I'll be on edge until the team is announced), but I'll watch it all. I'll love it all. 

I'll laugh.

I'll cry.

I'll scream. 

I'll cheer. 

I may even throw things...

...if it comes down to that. 

I love the emotion, the determination, the drive, the hope, the success, the stories, the dreams. I love it all (have I made myself clear yet?). :) 

For your viewing pleasure (and to perhaps pass on a bit of the fever), here is a montage of the gymnasts from the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. Enjoy!

How excited am I, you ask?

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Pinterest Strikes Again... and other ramblings.

It's true. 

I can thank Pinterest for my beginner mad cooking skills. Tonight, I made this bad boy:

Chicken Crescent Roll Casserole!

And let me tell you, it was DELICIOUS! I made a few adjustments with the spices and whatnot, but I am certainly impressed. Just look at that cheesy goodness--how can you NOT like that? 

And for dessert? 

Soda Can Cupcakes!

I made Funfetti cupcakes with Diet 7up. The verdict: umm YUM! They taste just like "normal" Funfetti cupcakes. Adios eggs and oil--hello soda cupcakes! And for those watching what you eat, they are obviously better for you. Win win!

And now for the other ramblings....

Please, please, please GO SEE THIS MOVIE PRONTO!

It probably won't be in theaters much longer. In Bakersfield it's only playing at the theater by the mall. It is so incredibly worth your time. Parents, PLEASE take your teenagers or pre-teens to see it as well. It has a great message and is done so well! Read more about it here!

And in other ramblings, I've recently become a huge fan of Francesca Battistelli. I honestly never really thought twice about her music because I wasn't too keen on her songs that played on the radio. But, I read about one of her songs in the novel I just finished and decided to give it a listen. Let's just say, I completely fell in love with most of her songs that are not on the radio--strange, I know. Here are a few that have captured my heart....

Someday Soon - I'm pretty sure I've never heard a song quite like still my heart.

Worth It - This song is packed with amazing truths. Love it!

Hundred More Years - So so so good. If I could piece the beginning and end of this song together, I'd use it as the first dance at my wedding.

I could go on and on and on and on and on. There are so many songs that have incredible lyrics. If you enjoy these, please go listen to more!

Hope you've enjoyed my random ramblings! 

Friday, April 13, 2012


Translation: THANK YOU!

I have seriously been so overwhelmed with the love and support I've received since I decided to go to Romania (just a week and a half ago!)!!!

Thank you thank you thank you to all of you who have asked questions, shared my excitement, and blessed me beyond measure with your love, encouragement, and support (both through prayer and financial gifts).

I can hardly believe that our trip is only a month and a half away! Eeeeek!


I've been brushing up on my Romanian!

Hopefully some of the language I've learned will find its way back to my noggin!

AND, for those who have been living under a rock  who may not have heard about my trip yet (and are surprisingly still reading this post), you'll find my support letter below. If you'd also like to read a poem I wrote about this beloved place, visit this post!

April 3, 2012
Dear Family and Friends,
            As we all know, time sure does fly! I can hardly believe it, but it has been six years since I last served in Romania—a country that is, and forever will be, dear to my heart. My heart leaps with excitement to inform you that I again have the opportunity to travel to Romania with Children to Love International (CTL). I will serve and help meet the physical, mental, social, and spiritual needs of orphaned and abandoned children living in Romanian government orphanages and those at risk of entering them.
            Our trip is scheduled for June 1-12, 2012. During this time we will travel to Bucharest, Romania to help CTL share the gospel with 600 orphans and support and encourage the CTL national staff. Amazingly, the team will be led by Victor Popa, who grew up in an orphanage in Romania and was raised through CTL’s ministry. Today Victor serves on the Board of Directors for CTL in CA.  He is also pursuing his Masters of Business at Cal Baptist University in CA. God certainly works in incredible ways!
            As thrilled as I am to be able to serve God and the people of Romania this summer, I definitely cannot do it alone. I am asking you to prayerfully consider being a part of my support team. I will need you behind me in prayer and financial support to make this trip possible. I need to raise $2,800 to cover the costs of travel, lodging, food, housing, and health insurance. My deadline for raising this support is May 20thjust around the corner. I am asking you for a gift of your prayers and whatever amount of money you are able to share. I greatly appreciate your support in both areas (and of course, all of your financial gifts are tax deductible!).
            Please partner with me as I serve this country that is so near and dear to my heart. My prayer is that we can bring the gospel to more children like Victor—in hopes that hundreds and thousands of lives, in turn, will be touched and changed now and in the future. If you choose to be a part of my support team, please send a check to Children to Love or visit to make a donation online (please designate “Amy Erickson’s trip to Romania” on your check or online). If you are unable to send financial support, but can partner with me in prayer, please email me and let me know.
Thank you for your consideration in joining my team and touching the lives of children and staff in Romania.

Amy Erickson
Children to Love
P.O. Box 9575
Bakersfield, CA 93389

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

HE is Risen...

...and my family makes some really cute kids.

After all of our crazy adventures during the week prior (read about the big balloon here and the segs here), we celebrated one of my favorite holidays with the Erickson side of the fam.

We began the day with a beautiful outside service with my uncle's house church, followed that up with an Easter egg hunt for the kiddos, went back to the house for food (of course), and had yet another Easter egg hunt for the little ones.

Oh!, and no Erickson Easter celebration would be complete without the "adult" Easter egg money egg hunt (adult being 26-40ish year olds).

We're crazy. We're cutthroat. We don't mess around. Those "big adults" make the eggs really difficult to find, and we don't let anything get in the way of getting the dough--except of course the bushes, and trees, and everything else that make the eggs impossible to find. I didn't do very well this year--butwe'renotgoingtotalkabouthat.

Here are some snapshots for your still my heart...these little ones just melt it...

Serving up Uncle B's special jello!

I told you we take the "adult" egg hunt seriously! 

My aunt made that little one's dress. She's amazing. 

Family, I miss you already!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Segs on the Beach!

I'm not making that phrase up--it's the catch phrase of GW Tours in Huntington Beach where we had the pleasure of riding segs on the beach!

As if riding up in a hot air balloon was not enough, we decided to go on a little segway off-roading adventure.


Our tour guide told us to strike a pose when the camera came out--I took him a little too seriously...

We got to go "off roading" on the sand--so cool!

This is the only dude that fell--and he made it happen about three times... yup. 

He told us to strike poses--I was only following directions.

And down the grassy knoll we ride!

And slalom through the trees we must!

And then it was out to "south central." I was told to flash a gang sign--again, I was only following directions! 

And here I am, apparently about to get hit by a car--I didn't even realize it until I saw this picture. :)

We did it! ....mostly without falling...

We had an excellent time! I'd highly recommend GW tours if any of your adventurous sides are itching to come out. Hope you enjoyed the snapshots! 

Monday, April 9, 2012

What are you doing? Oh, I'm in a hot air balloon...

Last Thursday, Mom and I had the amazing opportunity to fly up, up, and away over Temecula into Hemit in a giant balloon. Jealous yet? Not quite? Then take a little gander at these amazing snapshots--maybe they will change your mind... 

We took off from a gorgeous winery at the crack of dawn.

Here is our balloon!

Here we are INSIDE the balloon!

Yup, I was having a good time before we even floated away...

I was really excited!

They started the fire, and up it went!

We're in and away!

Pilot Phil--he was quite amusing... He also provided us with champagne, cheese, crackers, and apples. Not too shabby!

We got up to around 3,500 feet!

There's our companion balloon!

We got to witness the fog rolling in--good thing it waited a bit or our flight might have been canceled. 

Red hat over there was hilarious. He kept answering his phone and saying, "What are you doing, man? Oh, I'm in a hot air balloon." He found that so amusing that he started calling people just to tell them that he was in a hot air balloon. 

Oh, look! It's our shadow!

Just chillin' in a balloon. No big deal...

We got to watch our companion balloon land on the edge of a golf course. 

There is no way to steer a balloon, it's all done through wind currents and the pilot can only control whether he goes up or down to catch certain wind currents. A normal flight is between 45-60 minutes, but we got to stay up for 93 minutes to get into a good position to land. SO AWESOME! Phil had seen this field many times, but had never landed in it. He decided to give it a whirl. 

See our chase vehicles following us? See the dudes racing towards us to catch our lines and pull us down? They do all the work--the pilot gets all the glory. 

Run, Forrest, run!

And we had a successful landing! Good work, Phil. 

We did it! And, we LOVED it!

Jealous now? Perhaps a little afraid? Don't be. Flying in a hot air balloon is much like parasailing--super quiet (except for when the fire goes up) and peaceful. You don't feel like you're moving at all. The basket is high up, so you feel quite secure. It's truly an incredible experience. I loved it as a ten year old and I still loved it as a twenty six year old. DO IT!

Oh, and I'd highly recommend Sunrise Balloons--they were awesome! Keep an eye out for Groupons!