Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving of one another as God in Christ forgave you.
-Ephesians 4:31-32

Monday, May 30, 2011


I love Luxembourg.
The end.
It's gorgeous.
We spent all day today walking around the city.
So great.
It's like a fairy tale.
Back to Amsterdam tomorrow!

Luxembourgish Children

On the train from Brussels to Luxembourg, Cheyenne, Jess, Kara and I sat down peacefully on the train eating a Belgian truffle each.
We were happy until about 20 teenagers hopped on the train smelling like... well... teenagers.
We noticed throughout the trip that they kept looking at us and talking and figured that they were talking about us...
Toward the end of the three hour trip, the rest of the children started chanting "Charles! Charles! Charles!" with crazy thick french accents.
We knew something was up.

Charles then bravely walked up to us, script in hand saying "Hello- Good afternoon! My name is Charles and I am from ________, Luxembourg. What is your name? Where are you from? Are you visiting Luxembourg?"

We then proceeded to talk to these 20 Luxembourgish 14 year olds for the next hour. They recommended sites, said others were boring and were very interested in the Miami Heat.

It was their first year of taking english lessons, and all of these guys were expert at speaking English and even had a sense of humor in the language already!

Je suis pas gros!

We stopped in Belgium for three hours... kind of just to say we've been to Brussels.
While there we got ourselves from Belgian Waffles and sat in a park.
A man then came up to me and said
"Je suis pas gros! pas gros! pas gros! Je suis fort! fort o gros?"
He was holding his stomach and raising his arms-- I was very confused until Jess came up at told me he was asking me if he was fat or strong. Of course we called him strong-- and he smiled back at his friends saying something like "see! they think I'm strong, not fat!"
That was my Belgian Adventure.


accurate description of the train ride to brussels

The Great Unifier

I've come to think that soccer is the world's great unifier.

As a last meal as a whole YHM before setting out to travel, all the YHMers had one last dinner at Shelter Jordan, the hostel I'll be working at this summer. Dinner was a fantastic time of fellowship with the other YHMers and a great time to meet all the people I'll be living and working with this summer. I can't explain how crazy excited I am to meet these people and be their friends. It's so great to talk to these people who are my age-- from all around the world-- but have the same goals as I do.

ANYWAY-- after dinner, the Amsterdam teams dropped their belongings off at the staff house, also in the Jordaan neighborhood (Shelter Jordan is in the Jordaan). The house is huge, gorgeous and will be one great experience.

On the way back we passed about a pub per block for our thirty minute walk from the Willemstraat (staff house) to Shelter City. Every one of them was stuffed full of people getting ready to watch the Manchester United/ Barcelona game. Even before the game started, the people were talking loudly, enjoying one another.

Once we got back to "City", some friends decided to watch the game with hostel guests and staff. Seriously, soccer is the world's great unifier. I was in a room with Dutch, English, Australian, American and German staff members, a French family, a Norwegian girl, and some guys speaking some Eastern European language. Everyone was watching the soccer game excitedly from the 8 yr old french kid jumping up and down in his seat to the older Dutch man who got angry if anyone stood in his way of the TV.

It was such a special experience to be watching the same game that I knew that tons of people were watching at the same time all around the city :)

Friday, May 27, 2011

Happy in Holland!

I'm currently sitting in the Amsterdam public library.
We arrived at 8 am Amsterdam tim (2am Chicago time). We'll be stayin in Shelter City, the other Christian Hostel that YHMers are working at in Amsterdam. I'm spending a few days there before heading to Luxembourg on Sunday.

All in all, flight was uneventful. The weather is pretty chilly. The food is yummy :)

I've already walked through the red light district and seen my fair share of prostitutes and have smelled quite a lot of pot....

I'm not quite sure how I'm responding yet.....
I'll get back to you later...

Oh-- on a funny note-- this Dutch computer is underlining every word in red. Silly computer thinks I speak Dutch...

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


I'm copying this from Kara's official blog for our team.
These are prayer requests for as we set out.

Jess- prayer for boldness and freedom from worry; uneventful surgery and speedy, painless recovery for her 4-year-old brother, who is having surgery to repair a shattered elbow this week

Erin- prayer for calmed nerves during travel and reassurance of the Lord’s presence; the trajectory of her life has changed dramatically upon her acceptance to YHM and Wheaton’s Human Needs and Global Resources program (HNGR), which will take her on a solo six-month internship to a third world Spanish-speaking country next summer and fall…Let the transformation begin!

Cheyenne- prayer to live in the present while we are in Europe, with intentionality and willingness to invest in people

Kara- prayer that past struggles personal struggles would not resurface in such a way that would distract her from God’s call on her life to live with, serve, and listen to people in hostels this summer; protection in her battle against the flesh

In Chicago...

I've made it back to Wheaton.
I'm sitting in the Office of Christian outreach getting ready to go. All of the YHMers meet up at school to fly out to Amsterdam tomorrow evening.

Well-- I didn't sleep last night. My brain keeps running with "oh! did I call the bank? where's my tylenol? am I sure I have the right train to Luxembourg?" when you're all alone in your bed there's nothing else really to think about.

I took my flight from Providence at 6am (5am Chicago time) and safely arrived in Chicago right before a massive thunderstorm. Turns out, all the flights of my friends who were supposed to join me by noon, had flights horribly delayed. So I sat in the airport. Alone. For seven hours.

Jane Austen and I :)
I'm reading Persuasion.

On a happier note: I've kept up with the slides for my mom.
Turns out it's the fiftieth anniversary for a Baptist conference center in Spain that my grandparents helped plan. I was asked to send these photos to a man in charge over there and he was so enthusiastic to talk to me and tell me stories about my grandparents. It's so special to hear about the work being done in the church in Europe. It's so great to see the longjevity of these projects.

Especially when nerves are keeping me from sleeping.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

4 days. 6 days. 8 days.

Today- Rhode Island
Four days- Chicago
Six days- Amsterdam
Eight days- Luxembourg


I'm getting a little nervous. Like first day of school jitters.
Who is going to be my friend? Will they like me?
I feel like such a nervous kindergartner.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Summer Address

Erin Pyne
The Shelter Common House
Willemsstraat 33
1015 HW Amsterdam
The Netherlands

... in case you want to write me letters :)

Monday, May 16, 2011


Oh how un-fun this packing game is...

I need to pack enough stuff to get me from May 25-Aug 14.
My clothes has to be able to work for the still-chilly springtime in the Netherlands to August in the Canary Islands.
My belongings also have to fit in a backpack.
Everything has to be compact and comfortable.
But I can't pack like I'd pack my backpack for camp.
I'm working in constant contact with people.
I'm in major European cities.
I have to look cute.
But I'll also be doing shifts cooking and serving breakfasts to the guests.
And I'll be riding on a bike to get around.
I have to be practical.

Then there's the whole matter of electronics....

eek... how un-fun it is packing.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

E-mail List

My team is setting up an e-mail list for updates.
If you'd prefer to receive updates by e-mail rather than following the blog,
e-mail me at:

Saturday, May 14, 2011

"They call it... Surprising Amsterdam"

Being at home has been fun and super interesting. I'm finding all kinds of treasures at home.
And I found this:

My Mom's Amsterdam brochure from when she, my aunt and their friend went on a European adventure the summer after she graduated highschool. The brochure is precious: "Providing service has been called the national pastime of the Dutch" and "Amsterdam means individuality and freedom- and that may mean renting a car."

I'm now aware of where the best "discotheques" are, the best shopping and restaurants in Amsterdam are. Or were... in 1978.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


This week I'm doing some work for my parents both to help them out and to make some money because I won't be working the next two summers.
My mom asked me to scan and restore some old slides from her childhood so she can get copies that she can actually use. Not many Wheaties know it, but I'm pretty good at photoshop :)

My grandparents were missionaries in Spain when my mom and her sisters were growing up. I found some pretty precious photos of them doing their work. I'm scanning in more than 100 photos of the family... these are two of my favorites,

My mom is the middle daughter-- the one on the left.
How gorgeous is the background??

My papa
Part of the reason why I wanted to do YHM this summer was because my grandparents were career missionaries in Europe. It's nice, if only for 10 weeks, to get a taste of what they did for a living. It's really special to be working on these photos of them working in the church two weeks before I head out.

Also, immediately after I finish my time in Amsterdam, I'm flying to meet my family in the Canary Islands, where my mom did most of her growing up. It's going to be really special to see where they lived!

Just thought I'd share,

Monday, May 9, 2011

Jess's Blog

Here's the blog from another of my teammates, Jess.
She's posted a really beautiful first post about why she's doing YHM. Check it out:


Sunday, May 8, 2011

School's Out.

So finals ended on Thursday and I'm safe at home in Rhode Island.
We have two and a half weeks until we leave!
Can't wait to go.