Tuesday, June 13, 2017

1st Team

Sweet Valeriana receiving her first pair of glasses in her life
Our first team arrived on Saturday after a cancelled flight and lost bag, but arrive they did.  We started off the trip with worship at the local little Baptist church we attend, then medical clinic on Monday.  It was a busy day with over 70 patients seen between the two of us.  In addition, I had the team bring down 500 pairs of reading glasses and they were a HUGE success.  Reading glasses are almost impossible to find - I know - because when my own pair broke, I couldn't find a replacement pair anywhere in town.  So, I'm pretty confident by weeks end we are going to have distributed most of the glasses.  It was a great day, super busy, and many souls were treated.

Day 2 - 4 will be much of the same, and day 5 is a "day off" and a trip to the beach after a long and hard week.

location of our clinc

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

25th Wedding Anniversary

Twenty-five years of marriage.  Silver Anniversary. True love.

Engagement Photo

Twenty-five years ago, I told my sweet future husband “I do” and life has been nothing short of a grand adventure since.  “Way back then” we never knew that we would end up in Honduras, and then in Africa, that I would be a “bush doctor” or Mike would be a pastor, teaching African men and women the fundamental truths of the bible. 
Along the way, we have found that we are a hardy duo.  We have been through the trials of life, the loss of loved ones, and the creation of new life in our sweet daughter who turns 21 in a few days. We understand was true love is, have triumphed through illnesses, tribulation, and loss.  We not only survived but conquered living in extreme situations of Africa, and the loneliness of being so far away from dear friends and family.

Together, we make this amazing team.  Each year is simply better than the last. We complement each other, but we are uniquely independent as well.  We love our simple pleasures of “pizza Friday” and “pay day sushi” (when you live in a country that has sushi). We enjoy watching movies together, taking walks along the beach, and living life together.

I love you sweet husband – more than I think you even know.  What a blessing, indeed, that God brought you into my life.  Looking forward to the next 25 years!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Termites Ate My Couch - PUBLISHED!!!

Termites Ate My Couch – PUBLISHED!!   

It has finally arrived – my book has been put to print.  It will be available at your local book store soon, but in the meantime, it’s available at all the major distributors including:

And will be available in Kindle soon.

This book has been through a lot of revisions, and a lot of love and angst has been put into the pages that you are about to read.  With the literally hundreds of stories I could possibly share in the over 10 years of being on the mission field, I tried to put down the ones that would interest, intrigue, enlighten, and inspire you.  I hope I succeeded in this.  

“Have you ever wondered what life on the mission field is like? This book is an attempt to share stories that are thoughtful, heartbreaking, inspirational, funny, and crazy - in other words - an average day in the life of a missionary. These are true tales from a mom, nurse, wife, and flawed person. These stories show how reliance on Jesus Christ brought her through the most emotional, rewarding, and hilarious times of her life. You are invited to read these stories and laugh and cry along with her.

Erin spent eleven years in the U.S. Army.  She received her bachelor’s in Nursing, is working on her Masters of Public Health (will be completed in September 2017) and worked at a children’s hospital for 12 years.  She has traveled the world working in disaster response and as a medical missionary.  After eight years as a missionary in Honduras, she currently works as a full-time missionary in Central Africa.”

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Dental work and Blindness

1.      In my continuing pursuit of medical myths, I decided to tackle this one...


P    Pulling teeth can cause visual problems, even blindness.

Question:  Can pulling teeth cause visual problems?

P – Patient Information:  19 year old girl in Central Africa
I – Intervention:  teeth pulling
C – Comparison:  normal degeneration of visual acuity
O – Outcome:  blindness related to teeth pulling

I have had a number of people come to my clinic complaining of “blurry vision.”  Many of these patients are 40 years or older, and simply asking them to try on my reading glasses – they find out that they can see “much better.”  Some visual problems are related to other causality problems like diabetes or blood pressure issues.  However, there are a significant number of other people who need their teeth pulled and simply refuse to because, “later in life it will cause me to have vision problems.”  

 The first time I heard this I was totally caught off guard.  Where in the WORLD did this myth derive from?  So I did a little research and found that Africa isn’t the only location where this myth exists.  The good ol’ U.S. of A has this belief as well.   

The origin of this myth?  Here are some possibilities:

  In the era before antibiotics and modern medicine, upper tooth infections often did spread to the eye as well as the brain, leading to blindness and death in some cases.

§  The nerves and blood vessels supplying the eye tooth are similar in location and origin to those supplying the eye. You could incorrectly conclude that if you remove the tooth, the nerves and blood vessels going to the eye would be removed too.

Answer:  Removing upper, or any tooth for that matter does not have effect on a person eyesight.  The nerves which supply the eye and the teeth are different, hence no interconnection.” - Sujoy Chakraborty, BDS Dentistry, Dayananda Sagar College of Dental Sciences (2010)