Monday, March 21, 2011

AM~Erica on Bullying: Take 2

So anyway...

I am once again heartbroken to hear the level of bullying going on around, even when there has been a very recent uprising against it.

A note to those doing the bullying: You are being watched & you will be caught. It is not ok. Ever.

My middle schooler has been coming home with stories that there is constant bullying going on. It has happened to him, and to several others too. Apparently much of it has been going on under the faculty's noses & they haven't noticed. There is physical, verbal & mental bullying going on daily that never gets addressed.

Take a look at that last paragraph & replace the word "bullying" with the word "abuse". It's the same.

I have said that you should try to get to know the person first, no matter how "weird" or "strange" they seem to YOU. If you don't get along, go separate ways. There is no need to be abusive the person you don't see eye-to-eye with. And I am not just talking about kids at school...I am talking about life in general. It happens all of the time with adults, too. It's disgusting. If you are so rude to go out of your way to humiliate someone that you do not agree with for some reason, then that is abusive. We all are entitled to our own opinions. It doesn't make it right to belittle someone for not agreeing with you. It is not ok to try to humble someone weaker, or that you personally deem weaker, just for your own empowerment. And it all tends to begin at an earlier age that adults allowed to happen because of "kids being kids". The lesser party is being traumatized. The bully is allowed to believe what they are doing is ok. Neither is fine.

I remember being in 6th grade (still in elementary school) & hearing that a 7th grader, a kid I used to playfully chase on the playground in prior years, had committed suicide because of the level of bullying he had endured. Some of you may remember Paul Boucher & I remember my mom telling me what had happened. Looking back, he did seem to be an easy bullying target, but I never saw that when I chased him on the playground. It was hard for me to imagine what had happened. The truth did happen. It happened because the level of bullying was very real & very escalated. Paul did not get the privilege to encounter the level of education we have about bullying now, nor the resources we have too. He was a victim of "well, it's kids being kids."

Everyone reading this needs to take a step back & take a look at what they do everyday. Is there anywhere in this that you have been a bully to a classmate, family member, co-worker, passerby, person on a street corner with a sign, that person who excels more than you, that person who doesn't quite excel as much as you, the fat one, the skinny one, the short one, the tall one, the smart one, the struggling one...where does it end? Why are we so jealous? Why are we so commanding? I am sure I have bullied someone in some way...and for that I truly apologize! I never had that idea in mind! EVER! But there are those of you who do try to do such things. You even bully the advocates of the ones standing up to those you abuse.

After one more day of these stories coming out, I have emailed the principal of the school to raise the issue with him. We will see where this goes...

Please be sure to read my previous post on this.

After reading it, you will see I have dealt with it with my own kids, and it is for pointless & sensless reasons.

Try the Golden Rule: Treat others as you would want them to treat you. And Rodney King was right! Why CAN'T we all get along? I know we are human...tender, over-sensitive beings...but get over it. If you can't say or do something nice...don't say it or do it at all!

I will not stay quiet on this. Just note that you may hear more about this from me.

Stay tuned...

God Bless, AM~Erica

Saturday, March 19, 2011

AM~Erica Wonders if It's the Super Moon

So anyway...

Tonight is the full moon. When I was employed at one of the banks I worked at, I would always keep track of the full moon & let several other employees at our branch & others know to look out for the weirdos & crazies to come out. And they would never disappoint! People get really crazy when the full moon comes out. We all kind of become our own werewolves. And it's in traffic, when you go to the store, when you deal with clients & vendors at work...EVERYWHERE! It's amazing the type of spell the moon can cast on each of us.

Now, tonight is not only a full moon...but a SUPER MOON! It's supposed to be the closest to the Earth in 18 years. So...does that mean the bigger crazies come out, or do we all become even more over-the-top? Probably a good mix of both. And I'll give a couple of examples:

1. My lil guy's 1st soccer game of the season was today at noon. We were keeping watch for rain to see if it would hit around game time. We figured, and were hoping, that we could get the game in right before the game. It was SO cold out & the sky was just getting darker. The game of 5 & 6 year olds had not been going for very long when lightening began to appear in the distance. That should be grounds for ending the game. But the game kept going. Then thunder was rumbling. This should be a sign that we should at least cut the game short. But the game kept going. Not only did it keep going, they didn't even give the option to shorten the quarters. We went the whole game time watching lightening, listening to thunder & feeling the cold front working it's way through. So all the games going on acted like none of this was an issue...until...the games ended. The teams shook hands & before the teams could huddle back up for final thoughts, the referees were running through YELLING for everyone to immediately exit the fields & head right to the cars in the parking lot due to lightening in the area! Mass hysteria & a mass exodus came on like a bomb had just hit or fire broke out. It was all strangely calm & cool until the refs blew their final whistle. WHAT??

2. One of the greatest headlines came out today that totally gave me the giggles. From Spartanburg County, SC - "Deputy: Strip Search Finds Crack Between Buttocks". Really? I never would guessed to check there!! Yes, people...someone let that out to the public. How do you miss that? Someone, quick! Send this to Jay Leno stat!

My goodness...I am afraid as what else is coming for the day. Rain already messes with people & then to add a Super Moon on top of it? Please act responsibly, folks. Because you may the weirdo out there to someone else today.

Stay tuned...

God Bless, AM~Erica

PS ~ Don't forget that you can now receive my blog updates by email if it's more convenient for you! Just submit your email address in the "E-Follow AM~Erica" field!

Friday, March 18, 2011

How Irish was AM~Erica?

So anyway...

Since yesterday was St. Patrick's Day, it was our goal to work on eating something Irish, not something colored green (that happens on Dr. Seuss' birthday). Because of our ever-crazy schedules, and the research between me & my hubby, we had oatmeal for lunch, and then by the time dinner came around, we needed to have someone else cook for us. So we had to get a close-to-Irish meal. We landed at Bob Evan's where there was good selection of homestyle meals. It was either going to be there or Cracker Barrel.

So the kids didn't necessarily take in anything close to Irish, but my hubby & I tried. I went with a Haddock fish & chips (fries/potatoes) with a big roll & a side of coleslaw (cabbage). And on the positive side, we had a great waiter who was definitely in the spirit with a GIANT leprechaun top hat & a fun, silly humor to match! He was great!

Then we decided to figure out dessert. Since pudding is big in Ireland, that's what we went it is cheap...uh...I mean..."economical".

So I made pudding & we ate it while watching "The Quiet Man". It's a great movie that takes place in Ireland that is in a whole different time & culture. I love the wit of the Irish in Innis Free. Maybe that's the Irish in me. But I wonder how concerned I should be that it's my hubby's favorite movie...hmmm...It is certainly NOT your typical John Wayne film either! Interesting trivia about it: this movie was made to try to raise money to make the movie "Rio Grande". John Ford used John Wayne & Maureen O'Hara for both films. You're welcome.

So, we had a good day & hope to be much better prepared for next year! As with all the other foodie holidays.

So I am going to try to make my mom's Erin's Lush in cupcake form to see how it turns out. Then, once again...maybe next year...

What did everyone else do for St. Pat's?

OK - Stay tuned...

God Bless, AM~Erica

PS ~ If you prefer to get my blog updates by email, you may now enter your email address in the "E-Follow AM~Erica" field at the top!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

AM~Erica LOVES Celebrating with Food

So anyway...

Earlier this month was Dr. Seuss' birthday. You better believe we enjoyed green eggs & ham to celebrate. I love doing stuff like that. And if you know me well, then you already know that fact about me.

However, I missed a few key "holidays" to have themed food for! SHAME ON ME! So I am making a list of days during the year to have particular types of food on.

This week, I missed Pi Day. We should have had pizza at least. And yesterday was the Ides of March. We should have eaten Caesar salad. We even missed Chinese New Year AND Mardi Gras. So getting these marked for next year.

Tomorrow, however, is St. Patrick's Day. Even though it's a Catholic holiday (green), and we are a Protestant group (orange), I still plan to celebrate our Irish heritage. I just read that corned beef & cabbage is more of an Americanized Irish meal - go figure. That's ok by me...I really do not care for corned beef anyway. I'm pretty sure my kids would look at me like I was even crazier than I already am. So I am on a mission to put together a slightly Irish meal for tomorrow. So I am researching now.

My kids are (sadly) not fans of mashed potatoes. I would love to do a shepard's pie. So I will put the idea out there for anyone else...why not do a shepard's pie loaded baked potato? Just put the pie filling right on top of the potato? Or scoop out the potatoes & do a shepard's pie appetizer by filling the skins & then mashing the potatoes to put on top!

My mom makes this great salad/dessert for St. Paddy's Day. I consider it a dessert. It's Erin's Lush. It's a layered dish with a crust, cream cheese layer, pistachio pudding & whipped topping. YUM!! I have decided, since I'm on a big cupcake kick, that I may try it as a cupcake! If not this time, then I will stick to trying a lemon-lime & orange layered cupcake.

I will let everyone know what was decided on. The potato may end up being a French fry or tots of sorts...we will see.

In the morning, I would love to put together my own coffee concoction that some of you may have seen/heard me mention before: Tingling Leprechaun. It's coffee, chocolate, Irish Cream & mint. It can be served hot or cold & it could be spun into a liqueur version. And it is delicious!

Hopefully I will do a better job at keeping up with themed foods for certain days.

Stay tuned...

God Bless, AM~Erica


Monday, March 14, 2011

AM~Erica is Prepared

So anyway...

I've been keeping up (or trying to) on the horrifying images, stories & updates coming out of Japan. They are certainly getting it from all ways!

With "Snowpocalypse" that happened not long ago & with the Japanese scenes being called "Apocalyptic", everyone is scrambling to Revelation for guidance...again.

I will NOT downplay what is happening...this is tragic & of course there are "signs of the end" attached to it. All of this going on does not help but feed the crowd concerned about 2012 being the end.

However, there are people putting out there that "this is the end" & "here are the signs". The bible passages are being taken out of context as the following passages remind us that only God knows the end. We must be prepared for whenever that time comes. Signs like this have happened several times through the ages & the end has been prophesied each and every time.

Folks, we don't know. We just need to know that we must be prepared at any time.

Awful things are happening around us that are definite signs of "THE END", but that time is NOT specifically put out there. Sure, it could be tomorrow...and it could be another thousand years from now.

Anyone who has put an absolute time on the end of all is wrong. The Rapture was supposed to happen back in spring of 1989, and now it is supposed to happen on May 21st of this year (sorry to my daughter, that's her birthday). But the fact is...WE DO NOT KNOW!

We must always keep watch. Live like everyday is your last, but live it fully in the name of Jesus Christ. But do not live it out in vain.

If you take out your bible, or find one, you need to read Matthew 24:36-44.

With Japan being hit by the earthquakes, tsunami & nuclear meltdown scares, of course it looks bleak. This is not a time to point fingers but to band together. I am a large believer in taking care of our own, don't get me wrong, but it's major tragedies like this that the world must come together. What Japan has & is going through is catastrophic. They do not have the resources & manpower/peoplepower to deal what they are going through. This is where we must step up. This is also part of our preparation for the end times...whenever that may be. We are to take care of those less fortunate & help them get back on their feet so they can once again continue on their own.

The Red Cross does do a lot & so does UMCOR (United Methodist Committee on Relief). I highly suggest one of these to help give to so they, who are trained to deal with these crises, can help out over there. Pray for them & support them with gifts & donations that they are looking for to help in the efforts.

In the meantime, prepare yourselves. Everyday is the beginning of the end. I do not mean that negatively. I look forward to the day when I have eternal life in heaven through the saving grace of Jesus Christ. Am I terrified of what is going on? Yes. I am terrified for the people having to go through this. Am I afraid? Well, not really. I continue to prepare my heart for whenever that day comes. Because at anytime it could be THE end or our own end.

So when you start quoting the bible about the signs, please complete the thought & text by reminding everyone that we do not know when the end is, not even the Son. Only our Father in Heaven knows when that will be.

Stay tuned...

God Bless, AM~Erica

Monday, March 7, 2011

AM~Erica on Lent

So anyway...

Tomorrow is Mardi Gras...Fat Tuesday! It's the day that is supposed to be your last big shot at the stuff you love to do or eat before Lent kicks off with Ash Wednesday the following day.

Lent is a season of preparation in Christianity to get ready for the culmination of the prophecy of the Christ on Easter - it lasts 40 days, minus Sundays. It's the time when we remember that Jesus [the] Christ sacrificed himself for the sins of ALL people. It's a solemn season where we fast/sacrifice something to focus on Christ in meditation & prayer instead of the consumption of whatever it is that takes our focus away from Him.

Now here's my reminder:
Everyone tends to make a big deal about what they are giving up for Lent. Some people even give something up without even knowing what Lent is about. It's a spiritual thing & not meant to be a popular society-trend tradition of "something you're supposed to do." With this in mind, there is no need to announce & make public what your personal sacrifice/giving might be. When we do that, we have become like the pompous Pharisees that told everyone what they were doing because they were so "holy". Do NOT be the Pharisee, but instead make it known to only you & God. If it is something that you need to let someone else know because it is for dietary reasons, etc., then do NOT make it a big ordeal; instead quietly make your current needs known when necessary. It might effect dinner with the family, or watching a TV show with friends. But keep in mind the true reason of the piety behind what you are doing instead of turning into a Pharisee during the Lenten season.

I hope everyone has had or is having a fun & safe Mardi Gras, but remember what Lent is truly about. And may you truly have a thoughtful & blessed Lenten season.

Stay tuned...

God Bless, AM~Erica

Friday, March 4, 2011

AM~Erica is "Dog-Gone" Relieved

So anyway...

My fun & crazy post a couple of days ago pointed to the fact that we had roofers. After the crazy triple hail storm back in September, we needed a new roof...and did not get it until 2 days ago. The team that came out were very courteous & hardworking. They got it done in less than a day & a half! With there feverish banging away, my hubby said he was glad I wasn't having one of my migraines during this...he's right. I'm glad I didn't have one of my headaches either!

Well, when the roofing crew left on Wednesday, I went to let the dog out (FINALLY) when I noticed they left our back gate WIIIIIIIDE open! Good thing I caught it & got it closed before I let our dog out! They knew we had the dog...they watched me walk him with his leash in the backyard so he would leave the guys alone & their stuff.

Then came yesterday: the roofers got here at a decent time & got started, so I made sure the dog was in. The roofers finished around 11:30ish, so I checked the gate, it looked latched, so I let the dog out. I even watched to make sure the dog wasn't pushing the gate open. He tried, but the gate didn't [seem to] move. So I let him frolic in the gorgeous weather. He never asked to come in & I figured he was loving the weather as much as everyone else...

Fast forward to the kids coming home & heading out back to play & kick the soccer ball...
I told the boys to let the dog in but instead got a frantic response that they hoped the dog was already in. The gate was open. We have no idea how long it had been like that, but the roofers did not latch the gate back, so our very large yellow lab was able to nudge it on open at some point.

The older two jumped on their bikes & started scouring the neighborhood, and hubby drove around too. Nothing. The kids (especially the girl) were very upset! I felt bad because it still happened under my watch.

Well, since there's not much food in the house at the moment before we head to the store, we went to pick up some dinner. As we turned the corner, my hubby noticed a makeshift sign by the sidewalk that read "DOG FOUND". We picked up dinner to bring home (YUM! Sonic!) & looked at the sign to find a number to call. But we knew there was the possibility that it might not be ours. As we number. So I was hoping it would be behind the house where the dog was.

After dinner, I went to put my car back in the driveway, but took the opportunity to track down the sign to see which house it might be. So I started checking houses in the cul-de-sac the sign marked. Even though it was after 9:00 at night, I was ringing doorbells asking if they were the ones that posted the sign. No avail. I was really disheartened. Then I got a text from my hubby (the kids didn't know about the sign & that I had gone looking) bringing up that maybe there was a number on the sign we missed. So, I headed back to the I turned the corner...

...that crazy dog was crossing the street!! He just looked at my car approaching & kept going. I stopped abruptly & jumped out of the car. I started calling his name & he looked at me like I was insane! I told him to sit, so he did...and then layed down. He was a very tired dog & must've had a very long day. I had the leash with me & hooked it onto his harness, helped him into my little car, and then took him home.

Since we left the gate open just in case the dog came back on his own, I walked him back through the gate, into the backyard & back into his room (the storage room). I texted my hubby that I had an extra passenger, so he met me in the basement. The dog was tired & knew that he was in a little bit of trouble for wandering because he went and sulked in his hiding place under the stairs.

We did not let the kids know yet since one of them was in the shower & we wanted to tell them all at once. However, when my daughter was getting her pajamas on, she could hear sniffing in the storage room. The storage room is just on the other side of her room downstairs & there is a crawl-space door in one of her closets that leads to his hiding place. So instead of coming up & asking us what was going on...she investigated herself. *sigh*

Then she came up & let the boys know the dog was in the storage room! After they went & said hi to the dog in relief, we told them about the sign & me going & looking for him while I moved my car.

Now you believe God gives you signs? I do! And I believe in very literal signs sometimes. I believe "DOG FOUND" was God leading us to our dog. And the dog was ready to get home.

What a day!

Stay tuned...

God Bless, AM~Erica

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

The Seussification of AM~Erica

So anyway... is a day
that I'm going to use
my blog to play!

Today's the birthday of Dr. Seuss,
so I'm putting his rhyme-style into use.

Roofers roofing makes a BANG!
In my head it's causing a PANG!

Today I almost have no voice.
It's Missouri weather, I had no choice!
And it makes me kind of sad
because of the big chance I had:

You noticed the title said "Seussification"?
It came from a Tim Ezell invitation.
You may know of him in St. Louie.
In KC we don't have one like him - PHOOEY!

Last year I gave him a hard time
for not using a single rhyme
to use Dr. Seuss to celebrate.
I pointed out that he was too late!

Now it is a whole year later
and I got a head-inflater!
An email from ol' Tim Ezell
that was more than wishing well...
He said that he remembered me
and invited me to the show, you see.

He even wrote in Dr. Seuss-style!
Yes! Tim went the extra mile!

And as I'm watching by live streaming
I see what I'm missing in teaming.
Oh the time I could've had!
But I couldn't do it and that makes me...sad.

My Lou friends would have been surprised
to see me there & not believe their eyes!!

But because of this voice & roofing
I didn't get to go help spoofing.
While watching, I took the cue,
and pretty sure would've been Thing 2.

But I hope to make it clear
That I hope to join in next year.

Til then, I'm where the house is quaking,
much like my voice, it's all shaking.
So instead I'm planning dinner.
My hopes are up that it's a winner!

Who Hash, and ham with eggs of green,
Goldfish crackers, you know what I mean?
Plus we'll have some pink to drink!
We'll drink pink ink, just like the Yink!
Plus maybe have some bread with butter,
but hopefully no bitter battle words to utter.
Plus we'll have dessert of cake!
Seussy cakes I think I'll make!

Must wear bold colors that are stripey,
topped with a hat that is stove-pipey!

I hope you all have enjoyed this post.
This one I've enjoyed doing the most.

Thank you, thank you, my dear friend,
for reading this until the end.

Now go enjoy this wondrous day!
And to Theodore Geisel, Happy Birthday!

Stay tuned...

God Bless, AM~Erica


Missing my opp was hard to chew,
It left me wanting to cry - BOO-HOO!
But never worry, never fear...
I got my official invite for next year!!