Testing, Testing, 1 – 2 – 3

For starters, let me just say that I know people who get this and this particular Frozen Spaghetti pod is very special to my heart and so I thank you, very much, for the encouragement you show to my writing, my way of thinking and – in general – encouraging me to exist in my exact possible way.

I am in the final countdown to putting the email to my contacts out into the world. My goal is to send it to 100 people directly. Every time I add a person to the list, banking on them remembering they said I could add them, I question myself in just a little way.

It’s never full on doubt. Or lack of confidence or love of Words that Rhyme and Lullabies. It’s not really the whole “am I ready” for this thing, because – “what is this anyway” and / also, I was born ready.

But what it is is something unique to the experience of sharing with both hope and aspiration, with both “this is for me and my spirit” while believing in the way it connects with others.

What will this mean? What will my experience of numbers be? How can I communicate upfront about what exactly when there are still so many unknowns even about the coming months.

And – there you have it – I just need to know a little bit more. It’s time for the old give and take.

So I will be sending this email, coming soon to an inbox near you, that will introduce you to my first official creative work, pave the ways for the ways I am going to share it in its full color and dimension: audio, storytelling, baby holding, prayer.

I had a pulse of “nobody will want the last one” with a response of “or maybe everybody will”.

These three volumes of Words that Rhyme of Lullabies span the human experience as I know it thus far: infant hood, wonder, love and connection. Curiosity, identity and (yes) a little bit of trouble in volume 2, out Christmas 2022. Lastly, the final stages of life… the heart, grief and infatuation.

My first book is going to be sent to the printer next week and I will be better for it… having arrived in some way.

For now, just know I’m a little nervous. And I am thankful for this blog, Frozen Spaghetti – the name of my 8th grade autobiography – and the way it works as my shoebox on the internet; available to store ideas, feelings and – in general – whisper into.

If you are not yet on my mailing list or not sure if you are, go ahead and give me your details here. And forgive my lack of branding. I am under major construction. :)

My Last Day of Isolation. (The seeming joy of a breakthrough infection.)

When I woke up last Sunday with my chest completely tight after a night where my joints were on fire and I tossed and turned in absolute discomfort which was after having dinner with my husband and feeling like I had been on a Florida shore with no sunblock all day, the first thing on my mind was getting a COVID test.

There was only one other time I thought about getting a COVID test. It was summer of 2020 and we were packing up the house in Bellingham to move the kids, cats, furniture and new husband to Saint Louis. I remember feeling really nervous about getting a test and screwing up our logistics. I had a few days to see about myself, never broke a fever, ended up feeling fine and we kept our plans.

Now, here in the fall of 2021, I was fully vaccinated and definitely sick. One pink and blue stripe later, we were masking in the house, I was isolated to the master bedroom and bathroom and the psychology of being sick with mild symptoms, fine but not fine, and overall figuring out how to handle being excluded when “baby, but you’re in isolation – you have to be excluded” (to use David’s words) was playing out.

I wasn’t sick enough to be nursed, cooked for and cleaned for. I wasn’t well enough to cook and clean without feeling absolutely frustrated (both of those things are really less fun in a mask). I had enough energy to start walking the dogs, but would get out of breath and want to lay down. I didn’t know what to do with myself. I didn’t know what to expect others to do for me. But I knew the answer to both of those conundrums was somewhere between “nothing” and “whatever”.

By Friday, I had convinced myself to treat isolation as a little sacred time. I had used the week to finish my book, Words that Rhyme and Lullabies, and get a file out to the printer for art samples, editor for editing, designer for tweaks. Having that pdf off and running gave me a mental break “holy smokes my book is done” moment and I realized I had the rest of my time alone to dwell.

I started working through some organization.. gathering the material for book #2 – a devotional guide to emotions. I pulled fall and winter clothes up and washed and worked out my wardrobe for fall / winter. I lit candles and ate ice cream sandwiches and let my energy pool back into my body until Saturday night rolled around and I felt up for a glass of wine outside with David.

I spent Sunday pulling and potting my favorite plants to give them a shot indoors. I cleaned out my front bed and harvested my lavender into bundles that are now drying above the piano. My favorite moments from isolation were when David was off of work and we sat out in our backyard with the dogs and a fire and took our masks off. We had coffee on FaceTime and watched a movie synchronously but it was that outside time that really filled my tank.

And now it is Monday, day 9 of my 10 day quarantine. I will gather feedback on my book this week and start forging into the business side of getting the word out there and gathering orders for the first edition paperback of my first ever book. WOW. I will also start the real work of “writing writing” which requires a daily reading practice, a daily writing warm up, and some mining of spiritual thoughts and content. So today – my last day of quarantine, is like a little morph into new work, a new week.

Anyway. I hope you are staying safe out there. If you are feeling sorry for yourself today – trust me – from my little red hen complex to yours, it really helps to remember everything you have in front of you is a gift of some sort.

Even the hard stuff. That’s where the growth is. Name the belief you have that is causing the shit to feel real and see if that belief is worthy of keeping around.

I’m thankful for my breakthrough COVID infection for reminding me just how in control of my own mental health I am by tracing my emotional vomit back to my beliefs and what I am or am not allowing myself … :) I am thankful I was not needing medical care as I waited this out. I am mindful of those who are super sick and alone.

I am glad I allowed myself the space to surround myself with notebooks and hot tea and candles and use my quarantine to reboot and transition.

Yeah. Somehow we made it work. OK….

Until next time… erin

Lavender bundles
crossing my fingers for these geraniums to live through winter indoors!

Fan of My Life

I am a fan of my life. I realized this today, as I stood in my backyard – thinking about my husband – and smiling, I am such a huge fan of his.

Everything that is hard about my life is actually the challenge of the good. The realized dreams encouraging next round dreams. The next round dreams offering the last round’s fears. The Dalai Lama wrote something in this years planner about using fear to remember a part of your story and then offer that story up to the present. I didn’t totally get it, but I have been working at it a little mentally.

Like, for starters – simply asking myself what it is that I am afraid of…

Recent answers are things like: losing control, getting ahead of myself, being too much for people and seeming dishonest.

To a certain extent, I am afraid of failure but find that simply goes away by realizing my inner success. Little wins like a perfect chicken ceasar salad and well trained dogs help me with larger concepts like “what if I don’t win a Grammy for this” or “what if I am not doing an Oscar acceptance when I’m 80”. The fun thing about it is, those questions’ opposites are visions for what I will wear and how I will thank my most loved and cherished people in my life, how I will share my belief in God and in wisdom and in what I feel is the path to true loving humanity, a truly kind world. My cultural references make me a part of culture, and this – this is humbling, exciting – and makes my fingers type fast.

But I am just sitting here. Having my smoothie and a break outside with the dog toddlers. Which, if you are tracking with that whole story, at 8 months old and four dog park visits in, I see dominance emerging. And I see themes. I see patience as a virtue.

Patience. And the success of a simple life surpasses the success of the world.

Patience. And the love of a puppy dog fills the void in the bank.

Patience. And the attention of your children, the favor of your husband ceases all worries.

Patience. And movie nights, bonfires and s’mores become every day’s luxury vacation. (It helps to have a bottle of a favorite hotel lotion, if I may…)

I am a fan of my life. I am a fan of my family. Aiming success within my heart beat’s reach; more practical to my immediate corner of the world than with American ambition.

And…. on that note, I am going to finish my smoothie, arrange my plants… write a yoga class… and get back to work on my book.

BTW. Special Editions are going to be out this Thanksgiving. Guys. Comment if you want one. LOVE. and Thank you.