Friday, February 26, 2010

God forbid

I gotta say something. Reading the Bible all the way through is hard. What am I supposed to do with all the information about Old Testament sacrifices and regulations and what to do when you have mildew? I'll admit I completely skimmed Leviticus. But a couple weeks ago, I stopped in my tracks when I read this passage and I've been thinking about it ever since.

Aaron's sons Nadab and Abihu took their censers, put fire in them, and added incense; and they offered unauthorized fire before the Lord, contrary to his command. So fire came out of the presence of the Lord and consumed them, and they died before the Lord. Moses then said to Aaron, "This is what the Lord spoke of when he said:

Among those who approach me
I will show myself holy;
in the sight of all the people
I will be honored.' "

Aaron remained silent.

Leviticus 10:1-3

Moses doesn't tell us the reason why Nodab and Abihu burned the wrong incense. The only conclusion I can come to, then, is that it doesn't matter why they did it, but that they did.

I can't help but wonder, though, why such a harsh punishment? They were just getting the hang of this priest thing anyway. They hadn't volunteered for it either. What about second chances?

I have to admit, I haven't completely reconciled this in my mind, which is why I've taken a couple weeks to ponder it, but what I do know is that we have a holy God who expects holiness from His people.

Praise the Lord that He has made the ultimate, perfect sacrifice for us through His Son and all we need to do is accept Him.

All we need to do... Do we take that too lightly? Are we guilty of doing things the way we want, like Nodab and Abihu? Are we taking God's sacrifice for granted?

The more I know your power, Lord,
The more I'm mindful
How casually we speak and sing your name
How often we have come to you
With no fear or wonder
And called upon you only for what we stand to gain

God forbid, that I find you so familiar
That I think of you as less than who you are
God forbid that I should speak of you at all
Without a humble reverence in my heart
God forbid

Lord, I often talk about your love and mercy
How it seems to me your goodness has no end
It frightens me to think that I could take you for granted
Though you're closer than a brother
You are more than just a friend

You are Father, God Almighty
Lord of lords, you're King of kings
Beyond my understanding,
No less than everything

God forbid
God forbid...

("God Forbid", Point of Grace, Life, Love, and Other Mysteries)

Monday, February 22, 2010


My kids are THOSE kids. You know the ones who when left unsupervised for a few minutes while Mommy is in the other room decide to play with the water fountain and get soaking wet.

We went to a MOPS thing this morning tying fleece blankets for the Crisis Pregnancy Center. The kids were in the hallway playing on ride-on toys. My partner and I managed to make 3 blankets before I had to go home. Oh well. It was fun while it lasted.

Monday, February 8, 2010

A new old video for you

Last night, Catie was sitting on my lap at the computer begging for videos and the only thing she likes better than Disney or Peanut Butter Jelly Time is a video of herself. So, we were looking through our home videos and I found this one that I had forgotten about. I took it the week that our stuff came to our new house here (thus the partial chair on the floor in the background), so early December. Enjoy!

Boogie Nose from Erica Herzog on Vimeo.

Friday, February 5, 2010

I know what's important, part 2, or Our week in food: the reviews

Thursday night: Homestyle Vegetable Beef Soup --This is a favorite of ours, and it didn't disappoint. Jenny got in at 5 pm, so I wanted something that could simmer on the stovetop for a while and didn't have a specific "ready" time. Also, I wanted to feed her something that she wouldn't normally eat with her vegetarian husband.

Friday night: Homemade Pizza--Also a favorite. Here's my pizza dough recipe:

1 cup warm water
1 pkg yeast
1 pinch sugar
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp salt
3 1/3 cups flour

Mix water, yeast, and sugar in a large bowl. Let sit 10 minutes, or until frothy.
Add olive oil and salt. Mix in flour until you have a dough that you can work with.
Knead until elastic (10-15 times or so.)
Place in an oiled bowl, covered with a damp cloth, in a warm place until doubled.
Punch down and let rise again.
Stretch or roll out dough, top with whatever you want, and bake at 450 degrees for 10-15 minutes. We like ours baked on a pizza stone, but a baking sheet works too.

Saturday: Spinach Lasagna-- Even my picky husband who "hates" spinach ate this up. We had half a pan left over, which I froze in individual portions so that Andy could supplement his meals as needed.

Sunday: Andy, Mom, and Dad arrived Saturday night after the kids went to bed, so they woke up to a wonderful surprise!

For lunch, we had Mexican Pantry Soup. This is a soup that I made up based on a couple recipes I remembered but didn't have in front of me at the time. It turned out so yummy that I make it on a regular basis now. We served the chicken on the side so that it was vegetarian for Andy.

For dinner, we celebrated my dad's birthday with Unsloppy Joes, Oven fries, and Tomato Soup Spice Cake. The unsloppy joes were a disappointment. The sauce wasn't "sloppy joe" enough (too much tomato, not enough tangy) and the veggies were still crunchy. If I made them again, I would...well...I wouldn't make them again, but if I were wanting a vegetarian beany sloppy sandwich I would just use a can of manwich with a can of kidney beans.

The oven fries, however, are a favorite around here. You just spray a baking sheet with Pam, cut up some potatoes thinly, lengthwise, place them in a single layer on the pan, spray them with Pam, sprinkle with salt, garlic powder, and onion powder, and bake in a 400 degree oven for about 30 minutes, turning halfway through.

The cake was also a hit. Moist, flavorful, yummy.

Monday: Indian night! We had an Indian restaurant that we loved in Doha, and I've been trying to replicate their murgh (chicken) tikka (grilled) masala (tomato sauce) ever since using the recipe on the back of the masala mix with no success. Finally, I found this recipe and it is so much better: Chicken Tikka Masala. I had planned on making Bhindi Masala (which had good flavor, if you care for okra) with it for Andy, but when I looked at the recipe again it didn't seem like enough, so I also made Aloo Gobi (which was absolutely delicious.) I also made bismatti rice and Andy made buttered nan for us.

Tuesday: A family favorite: Roast, Carrots, and Potatoes. Yummy. I also made white bread in our new breadmaker.

Wednesday: Mexican night! Spinach Enchiladas (too much ricotta, tasted like lasagna with enchilada sauce) and Chicken Enchiladas (oh so delicious!).

Thursday: For lunch we had Sweet Potato Minestrone with grilled cheese. The soup was very yummy and satisfying. And, bonus, Mom calculated that a bowl equalled 3 points with Weight Watchers. To balance out all that good for you stuff, we made grilled cheese with colby-jack on homemade rosemary bread.

For dinner, we ate Alsatian Onion Soup, which came from a restaurant cookbook, so I probably shouldn't post the recipe. It was yummy though. Think french onion soup with apples and rye bread croutons with muenster cheese melted on top. We also had cranberry pork tenderloin. Place a pork tenderloin in your slow cooker, sprinkle with a generous amount of Italian seasoning and salt, spoon a can of whole berry cranberry sauce on top, and add about a cup of apple juice. So tender and yummy in about 4-5 hours on low. We made a gravy from the juice and served it with mashed potatoes.

On Friday morning we headed up to Spokane/Ceour d'Alene to visit with family friends and drop my parents at the airport. When we came back Saturday night we had enough leftovers that I didn't have to think about lunch or dinner again until Tuesday.

Now that's a good week!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Out of the frying pan and into the fire isn't exactly the right cliche for this but it's the best I can come up with

So, after my family left (before, in Catie's case) we all got colds. Ugh. Ironically, I could use a few days of rest, but this wasn't what I had in mind.

Here's where I would have a huge array of photos to show you all the wonderful times we had together. Ummm... but I only took 12 pictures with my camera while they were here. Fortunately, Jenny and Andy more than made up for my lack of photos if I can ever get them to send me some. :)

Catie was so excited to play with her baby cousin despite the fact that he is decidedly larger than her baby dolls. In fact, he only weighs a little more than 10 pounds less than Catie and Nick. He didn't share the same enthusiasm in these pictures, but trust me when I say he loved seeing his cousins too.

Grandma and Grandpa came bearing games and princess dresses. This is where I tell Catie, "You can't throw a fit when you're wearing a princess dress."
And this is where I realize I took absolutely no pictures of Nick.
While my family was here, Dad and Andy transitioned the twins' cribs into toddler beds. They were starting to get out of bed on their own, so it was time. I was a little sad. I think it's easier for me to act like they're still babies. But, it was time.

I have a little mantra for Catie before naptime:
me: Stay in bed. What are you going to do?
Catie: (blank stare)
me: Stay in bed. What are you going to do?
Catie: (blank stare)
me: Stay in bed. Are you going to stay in bed?
Catie: Yes!
Setting clear expectations is the key, they say. This is what I found yesterday when I went in to get her up from naptime:
Yes, she's sleeping on the floor. Sigh...