Happiness is…

…unexpected phone calls from old friends
…tater tots
…good books that you can read again and again
…friends who remind you to post a blog so you don’t mess up your final shot at nablopomo
…watching my boyfriend shave
…my brand new suv
…Friday night date nights (and i’m going to one right now)


picking myself up again

“Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in getting up every time we do.” – Confucius

I wasn’t sure what to blog about today, so I asked my friend Micaela. (I’m trying to make this month my final go at NaBloPoMo). Micaela is the kind soul who picked me up and drove me to work for 3 month straight after I 1) broke my foot and 2) got hit by a drunk driver. So, her soultion was to read me a few quotes, and just let them inspire me for today’s post.

The idea behind this quote has always meant a lot to me. I’ve “fallen down” many times in my life, but the moments I’ve felt most true to myself were those terrible scary moments that I picked myself up, dusted myself off and set off to make things right.

What do you think? Which moments taught you the most about yourself: the moments you actually “fell” or the moments you picked yourself back up again?

we are going to have visitors!

I’m going to start a series of guest bloggers all blogging on a similar subject… first one being posted is tomorrow. I’ve asked a handful of blogging and school friends to write a guest post about a moment in their life they came to a “realization” or a “defining” moment or a moment of “reinventing”. Yes, the subject is pretty broad, but I think it will absolutely get some interesting responses.

I’m not sure how often I’ll have these posted- I’m hoping to have a guest blogger on here once a week.

Stay tuned! 🙂

reinventing erin…

I made a good choice when I decided to make that the blog’s name. I mean, I had a bunch of other good ideas, but the reason why it made the final cut was because I wanted a blog that would be able to grow with me as my life expanded and evolved. I mean look how much I’ve changed in the seven months since I’ve had this blog….

I started a new job right around the time I started the blog. I met some great new friends, and started being more social again.  I broke my foot, and needed to learn to rely on other people. I became a girlfriend to the most amazing man on earth. I got hit by a drunk driver; there’s nothing like a head on collision to make you want to start living.

And that is what I have been doing…Living…Living and Learning. I started this year saying that I wanted the word “Brave” to symbolize 2011. Part of me isn’t sure whether to be happy or sad that I chose that particular word. I’ve had to be brave in all aspects: I ran into the ice cold water on New Year’s Day for the Polar Bear Plunge; I met someone and had to learn to be in a relationship, not just be alone. I needed to get back into the driver’s seat after not driving for over two months (broken foot) and deal with the fact that just because I see headlights coming toward me, it doesn’t mean that car is going to cross into my lane and hit me. I’ve been brave simply by being honest with myself and choosing to put in the effort to be happy.

And happy I am. My heart is exploding with love. It is so nice to be alive.



So, it has almost been an entire month

I’m ashamed. There is no better way to put it. I’ve been avoiding this: the post full of apologies where I try to talk my way out  apparently taking a month off. I do apologize. I’ve missed writing here. I’ve missed reading your comments. I’ve missed composing random blog posts in my head only to forget them later. I’ve missed checking my stats. I’ve missed the freedom to write whatever I feel. I miss typing sentences while I think them, not staring at a computer screen for 20 minutes trying to come up with one “perfect” sentence.

I bet you’re wondering what the hell was so important that kept me from blogging. Nothing. That’s the truth. The great thing about being a writer with a blog, is that you can write whatever you’d like whenever you’d like. There are no requirements, no word counts. I could type one word and click on the Publish button. I can write a 3 sentence post on my phone while waiting in line at the grocery store. So, because all that… I don’t believe that there are very many important things that could literally keep me from blogging.

Over the course of the month, I did have quite a few excuses as to why I couldn’t write on here though. They are:

  • I was tired, so I went to bed instead.
  • I had just finished eating Smartfood popcorn, and I needed to wash my hands.
  • The Celtics were on tv.
  • I was at Mr. O’s house, and I forgot my laptop charger at home.
  • Sometimes typing on the screen of my Droid irritates me. The buttons are weird too.
  • I got in a car accident with a drunk driver, and I needed a few days to mentally recuperate.
  • After I hit the New Post button, I stared at the screen for 5 minutes before I realized I no longer remembered what it was I had planned on writing.
  • Facebook. Enough said.
  • I’ve been really happy spending time with my guy and our friends.
  • I write think about writing so much for school.

I’ll make it up to you guys. Forgive me?

this thing called happy…

The Elusive Happy. I think I’ve found it.

Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been very happy the past couple years. I’ve surrounded myself with good people, and in turn have been rewarded with so many incredible experiences. I’m fortunate to have deep bonds with the people I include in my life. Environment is key, and mine is healthy.

I’ve pushed myself to take chances in my career as well as my education. Leaving my former job was an extremely difficult decision. I had started working there when I was only 17 years old. The people there became my family. They surprised me out one night to watch me sing in a karaoke contest. They suggested I audition for American Idol- one of the ladies even went so far to offer me her father’s house (which was near the venue) for the evening! They were there for my high school graduation, college graduation and my acceptance into graduate school. Needless to say it isn’t easy to leave an environment where you have such history to start fresh in a completely different atmosphere. Yet, things turned out wonderfully. I’m still learning at my new job, but I work with a group of people who I truly care about. People I get, and who get me.

School? I can’t say enough about it. Obviously y’all know that since school is all I seem to talk about on here lately. I love my teachers, the administration, my peers, the reading, the writing, Ender’s Island. I love being able to call myself a student again. I love everything about it.

My family has grown so much in the past couple of years as well. I can’t claim any credit for that though. Since 2007, I now have three beautiful nieces and one handsome nephew. They (and Fenway) are the loves of my life. Watching them grow (even though I request almost daily that the oldest two stop growing… the youngest two don’t speak quite yet) has been probably the greatest joy I’ve ever experienced.

And now? Now I’ve got this guy in my life. A guy who loves his friends and family with all his heart. A guy who is kind. A guy who is relaxed, who doesn’t let little things bother him. A guy who will show up at my house with flowers for my grandmother’s birthday, even though we had only been dating for about a week. A guy who jumps out of his comfort level to try things like sushi just because I love it. A guy who makes lists with me (you all know how strongly I feel about lists) about all the things we want to do together. A guy who has made room for me in his life. A guy who I know will be in my life for quite some time.

So, The Elusive Happy?

I wonder if it just creeped up on me throughout the maze of these past two years. I feel like I’ve had this thing called happy all along. It’s just….It’s just that I’m taking a second to recognize it.

I am very, very blessed, folks. I’m at a place in my life where I know who I am, what I want, why I want these things, and where I belong. And all I can really say about it all? Life…is…good.

I wish you recognition of your own elusive happy.


I had an incredible evening. It was epic, perfectly epic.
I’m so lucky to have such amazing people in my life. My friends are incredible. My family is amazing. Every where I turn I realize how fortunate I am.
And now I just can’t stop smiling.
Tonight was perfect.

And “long johns” apparently has two G’s…

a little sunshine

Its been a tough week. My sister-in-law’s grandfather passed away. We all loved him very much. Another family member had a health scare, and just other little things.

But with all that happening… I’ve still really had a great week. Sounds insane. All the scary things have worked themselves out. Death is a fact of life; I’m just so fortunate that I knew Poppa. My family member is healthy, and that is the biggest relief. The other things cleared themselves up like they always do.

But it has been an awesome week… I’ve spent more time with my Memere. I’ve laughed my ass off every day. I have new ideas for three books and one short story. And I’m excited about making a Rockstar List and checking items off the list.

And on top of everything… Today is Micaela’s birthday 🙂

missing robert

I’m trying to convince myself that writing a blog post is productive, because at least I’m writing. I’ve yet to write anything of substance for this semester. Don’t get me wrong, I probably have about eight or nine or ten single spaced pages of nonsense, but nonsense just won’t cut it.

It’s just that I have this problem: every time I sit down to write lately, all I can think about is Robert. You don’t need to analyze me; I’ll do it for you. If I’m sitting down to write and all I can think about is one person, then that probably means there is an important story to be told.

So why not tell it? Good question. Because it hurts too much? Maybe I’m afraid? It makes me feel too vulnerable? Because I don’t even know what I have to say about him? The story isn’t just about him; its about me, it’s about people who are here and safe and out of harm’s way… people who I worried about for years. It’s about how I didn’t worry enough for Robert.

If I were to start my story, here is what I would say: “Robert was killed on Jeremy’s birthday.”

That is as far as I can get. I can’t write about sitting on my parent’s couch and getting a call from my brother telling me that he heard that Robert had been killed in Afghanistan. How Jeremy asked me to find out if it was true, to look on facebook, to make some calls. I can’t write about how I searched the internet  for hours like I was some kind of cyber detective looking for clues, even though my good friend John spoke with Robert’s mother and called to let me know. I don’t want to talk about how angry I was that the newspapers and tv stations weren’t announcing his death. Where was his picture? I don’t want to talk about how physically sick I felt and still feel when I actually saw his photo on tv, next to the words “Soldier Killed in Afghanistan.” I don’t want to write about how I still haven’t talked to his sister Becky since the funeral. How I don’t know how she is doing. How I don’t know how his two- maybe even three- year old daughter is doing.

I don’t want to write about how for years I made deals with God, crying and pleading, “If you bring Nicholas home safely I will never ever in my life smoke a cigarette again; I’ll go back to church. If you bring him home, I don’t care if he and I never even speak again, as long as he’s safe” or how I bargained with powers I don’t know for sure exisit to keep Gene and Stephan alive too. How even now, the USS Enterprise holds a special place in my heart. How that for years I was so terrified that something would happen to my friends. How I obsessed about it. How I was convinced that one day I would be forced to stand in front of a flag draped casket, to see their uniforms, empty boots on the side, to hear someone play Taps. I don’t want to write about how years later, when they were all safe and finished their tours of duty, there I was looking at a young boy’s empty boots, uniform, gun. I don’t want to write about how I didn’t even consider this being an option. How I didn’t obsess over Robert.

No, I don’t want to write about that. I don’t want to write about how the day before Robert shipped out, I told him he’d be fine “because I know everything.” My signature line. “Trust me; I know everything.” I hate those words. I hate myself for ever speaking those words. I don’t want to write about how we’d instant message each other at 3:00am because we both couldn’t sleep. How we’d always talk about my grad school applications, and how much work it all was. How he’d send me messages just to check in and make sure I wasn’t overdoing it; that I was taking care of myself. I don’t want to write about how he was a much better friend to me than I was to him. I don’t want to remember those conversations, even though they are all that’s really left.

I was looking through pictures of my oldest brother’s wedding a few weeks ago, when all of a sudden I saw Robert. I had looked at this picture many times before, but never did I notice him in the pew as Mike and I walked down the aisle. He looked so happy. He was always such a good friend to Jeremy; he looked up to him. Robert was still in high school then. He hadn’t yet enlisted. I remember how at Jeremy’s wedding he was talking about what a great time he was having, how he said he would have done the whole night over again when it was over.

Wouldn’t that be nice? To have the chance to do the whole night over….

polar bear plunge 2011

I thought y’all deserved to see a few pictures from my first ever Polar Bear Plunge. Will I do it again next year…probably! Can’t believe I didn’t hate it like I thought I would. Instead I actually enjoyed it (kind of).


But wait, I forgot the most important message of all in the last blog post….

I hope you all have a wonderful, blessed, happy Thanksgiving.

I’m very grateful for all of my readers. hugs and kisses to you.


So far, my day of travel  hasn’t been as bad as I expected it to be. I’m sitting in the Boston Airport now, waiting for my flight to Newport News.

I absolutely adore people watching. There are some wild ones out there. So, since airport travel talk is all the rage now a days, I figured I would share my thoughts. Boston’s Logan Airport is quite big- its an international airport, and because of that, security is pretty strong. Everyone has there own opinions about body scans and pat downs, and I’m not really going to argue for either side here. This is how I feel- I’ll do whatever is asked of me in regards to safety measures. Anyone who remembers 9/11 or has known someone who served in the military should feel the same way. Although, I do worry that the newest measures are a bit much. So basically, I fall on both sides of the fence. I understand the necessity, but I am a bit uncomfortable with it. So I figured today would be interesting to say the least.

After personally going through two different screening methods (no, i was not pat down) I don’t think there much to complain about. The security process was barely any more trouble than usual. I got through the security clearance quite quickly, and this was also with the crazy bag lady– the TSA staff who pretty much had an issue with anything that was put through the belt (you know, jackets, shoes,laptops, etc). She took her job very seriously. Which is good, isn’t it?

There is the cutest little three year old boy (and his mom) near me right now. He has a mohawk. LOVE IT! He’s telling me all about Thomas the Train. I tried to tell him that I know Thomas quite well.. I watched him as a child, and my nephew is a bit obsessed… but he’s still educating me now as I type.

There were five really handsome guys sitting near me just a few minutes ago. One of my big complaints about traveling alone is that I never seem to be around any handsome guys. EVER. Its not that I want to meet someone while traveling… but its always nice to have eye candy or someone to flirt with. Those five guys just boarded a flight to Atlanta. Bummer.

I took a bus today! That is a pretty new experience for me. I didn’t have a ride to the Boston airport, but I did have someone who could take me to Providence, so I took a Peter Pan bus from Providence to Boston. It dropped me right off at my terminal. I thought it would be awful, but I was fortunate enough to sleep through about 1/2 of it.

So, from what I’m seeing, this section i’m sitting in is pretty popular. They have already boarded three flights while I have been sitting here. I’m a little bummed because my little mohawk friend is boarding a flight now to Akron, Ohio. I wont lie, I’m going to miss the little bugger.

Here is another simple thing I dislike about traveling alone. I’ve got a nice little seat in the waiting area, right? Well, I want to get up and go to the bathroom before I get on my flight, but I don’t want to lose my seat. At least when you are traveling with someone, you can leave all your stuff in one area and take turns getting up and walking around.

I don’t think I’ve quite absorbed the fact that I’m going on vacation for the long weekend. I don’t feel like I am going to go see some of my favorite friends in the whole wide world. I can’t believe I’m going to go to some of the best restaurants and bars. This is going to be spectacular.

I can’t wait to throw my arms around some of my friends and hug and kiss them. Screw hugs, I’m going to tackle them 😉


Seriously? I have no words, because this is the best video I have watched in the longest time. You better believe I am going to go get a tee shirt now 🙂 FCKH8!

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