Thursday, September 4, 2014

Raising a glass to Cady Heron

This past weekend, I made it out of town (out of the country, actually) for a friend's bachelorette party. I was a little afraid at first since the only person that I knew really well, was the bachelorette. There were multiple ladies on the trip that I'd never met, only met in passing, or sort of knew from college. Add sleep deprivation on top of that, and walking up to say hi to a couple of the ladies was downright intimidating. You know how sometimes your insecurities get the best of you, and while you realize that you're not being logical, you can't seem to shake them? Well, that happened to me for the first five minutes of being on the trip. Luckily, the ladies were so wonderful, upbeat, and personable, that I didn't get to languish in that feeling very long. Good thing, since my roomie (someone that I had never met) and I walked into our room and saw that we were going to be sharing the duration of the trip (4 days, 3 nights) in a Queen bed. Dun dun dun!! Cue the dramatic gerbil.

Needless to say, it worked out incredibly well. I had a FANTASTIC time and came back (momentarily) refreshed. I also came back with a sore throat and a cold, but that's a post for another time. Point being, there's something about female relationships, old and new, that can leave your soul feeling joyful and happy. Don't get me wrong, I love my guy friends--some of them provide me with some much needed comic relief when I'm over-analyzing a situation. But, there's nothing like eating chocolate and drinking red wine with a new (or old) girlfriend that really makes your day.

Perhaps it's that as we get older, we're better at figuring out what personalities are compatible with our own and which aren't, or that we've finally gotten to the age where BS is no longer permissible. Whatever it is, I like it! As an only child, meeting a great girlfriend can almost feel like meeting a sibling that you have endless amounts of fun with and all sorts of inside jokes. An individual that you can talk about crazy nail art with one moment and career challenges as a late 20-something the next.

So, this weekend, give your closest girlfriend a squeeze and pop open a bottle of Pinot Grigio (or, your beverage of choice) and revel in your female friendships.

Monday, May 19, 2014

A Note About the Happiness Project


   I know it's been a long time since I've last checked in, so I'll try to make this post worth your while. I've been meditating about this post for a bit now and writing parts of this post many times over in my head.

Show of hands, how many of you have been taking part in the Happiness project? One, two, three?? I feel as though I've seen it cropping up a little here and there on social media and, true to my nosiness streak, I'm intrigued to see what makes other people happy.

One of the great things about taking part in the Happiness project is that you're able to see what it is that makes you happy on any given day. I've noticed that my happiness tends to reside in food, coffee, and exercise--in that order. Which, to be honest, is pretty accurate. I love the first bite of a freshly baked chocolate croissant, the first sip of a well-made caffeinated beverage, and being soaked with sweat after a great workout. So, those things weren't entirely surprising as much as confirmed that, when it comes down to it, happiness on a daily basis is achieveable.

One of the limitations that I've found with this project is that I'm unable to capture all of the moments that contribute to my happiness on a daily basis. Just today, while I was walking to the metro on the way back from the gym, these two adorable twin girls waved at me through their car window. There's something about the unadulterated joy that children have (and want to share) that is incredibly contagious. However, I can't take a picture of that moment or feeling without both failing to capture the moment...and feeling like a creep. There is one picture on my instagram (@eriebear412) where I captured a picture of the first warm day of spring. I felt exuberent, enthusiastic, and incredibly lucky to be able to see what felt like the first peak of sunlight in ages, but, at the end of the day, I took a picture of the sun hitting an office building.

I don't want to sound like Eeoyore, because this project has actually had a profound effect on me to remember that life is, indeed, good, but, in some ways, we are limited in what we're able to show that makes us happy. I'll press on and I invite you to do the same.

More importantly, what do you think about the Happiness project?

Waste of time or opening your mind??

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

What you got in that fridge?

So, I have to be honest with you guys right now and just put it out on the line---I'm incredibly nosy. INCREDIBLY. I love knowing what type of beauty products celebrities use, what gym bags they tote their stuff in, and etc. But, I have to say that one of my favorite posts on Well + Good  is when they take a peek into celebrities, and non-celebrity, fridges. There's something about seeing what people eat that is very fascinating. Don't get me wrong, I'm curious about what everyone is eating and wearing (more on that another time), but for some reason, you can really tell a lot about a person from what they decide to purchase at the supermarket. Whenever I'm in the grocery store, I generally have blinders on or am impatiently waiting to get cashed out, so I tend not to notice then, but YES, these posts really speak to me. Well + Good did a post about Prince's fridge and found that he has a llama egg in his fridge. A LLAMA EGG people. You can't make that stuff up. Anyway, since I've been a lurker for far too long, here's a peak into mine.

(Inside the fridge)

(Front of fridge)
 Disclaimer, I received my weekly CSA box right before I took these photos, so things inside are a bit fuller than they would've normally appeared. Anyway, on to the contents!

TOP SHELF: Pesto, pine nut hummus, container of Greek yogurt, Salsa and baking soda (for any lingering odors). Honestly, I feel as though I have great intentions when I buy things: I'll eat healthier, I'll think of more interesting recipes, or not leave things in my fridge past the expiration date, and, inevitably, I don't eat the hummus, so it goes bad, I nosh on the Greek yogurt for breakfast and am instantly hungry again, and I can never think of anything to put Pesto on other than pasta and spaghetti squash. Though, after writing that, I just had about 3 different tasty ideas. Go figure.

MIDDLE SHELF: So....I broke the cute little cheese drawer in my fridge trying to stuff another type of cheese in it, that's why it's taking up half the space. Inside that, there's a loaf of bread, goat cheese, meringues from Bermuda, corn tortillas, and sharp cheddar cheese. Then, there's almond milk for smoothies, a pot of leftover rice (sorry, I'm lazy), packages of dandelion sprouts, cherry tomatoes, and a ziploc bag of half a lemon.

THIRD SHELF: My Brita (I love you Brita!), 2 beers remaining from a mixed six-pack of Dos Equis and Corona, shallots, parsnips, and a HUGE bag of kale. The mixed six-pack came from contributions that I made to a house party, which ended about 15 mins after I got there, so I might have helped myself to some of my offerings.... Also, can we talk about how shallots are amazing and I've completely undervalued their worth??? Sorry, I made a combo of shallots, kale, and brussel sprouts the other day and it was SIMPLY AMAZING. TASTY TREAT. Anyway, veggie offerings are from the CSA box mentioned earlier.

FRUIT AND VEGGIES SHELVES: I know that the fruit side looks a little sad and dismal, but that is probably due to the fact that I eat a ton of fruit and there weren't that many in this week's CSA bag and I'd eaten all of my Harris Teeter reserves. Veggie side is filled with brussel sprouts, squash, potatoes, yams, scallions and some vine tomatoes (I'd purchased them previously).

SIDE OF DOOR: Ok, I'll admit it, I'm a little bit of a Chinese takeout condiments hoarder. So, sue me. Those tasty spicy mustards are just MY JAM, ok?There's also about 4 different types of hot sauce, emergency chocolate syrup, margarine, minced garlic, sour cream (which has since been thrown out. The sell by date was March 30, 2014. Whoops!), spaghetti sauce, various types of dressings, margarita mix, apple juice, and cider.

The outside of my fridge is festooned with postcards from friends from whichever country they're traveling to. I love receiving snail mail, so I highly encourage friends to send me postcards. Also, what people write on postcards tend to be a snapshot into the very second they chose to send you one, so it's nice to feel like you were on a part of their trip. I also have coupons for various stores and magnets from my alma mater (Go Pitzer!), different running events, and random restaurants up there as well.

So, what do you have in your fridge and how much of that speaks to your personality??

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Because I'm happy!!!

Hey guys,

     Have you heard of the Happiness project? It's been floating around Instagram and Facebook for a little bit with the hashtag #100days. Users have been known to experience greater happiness, start noticing things that made them happy, be in a better mood everyday, fall in love during the challenge, and become more optimistic. And couldn't we all use a little of each (or all, to be honest) of those in our lives? You can check out more about it here: So, I'm starting off this wonderfullly warm and sunny hump day with a the A-Z of Dance (grabbed from one of my favorite blogs, Man Repeller). Come on guys, get happy!




Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Hair, hair, hair long beautiful hair

Before and After

It's true that whenever I've watched a show where the main character has gone through a particularly devasting breakup or "Come to Jesus" moment they've chopped off their locks (here's looking at you Felicity). But, what about in real-life?

People have speculated that the same most be true for actresses--there was even a rumor going around about JLaw and the reason for the chop heard round the world. Clearly, negative on that one, evidenced from the liplock that she displayed at the Golden Globes. Is there room for people to just get tired of their current 'do and chop it all off? Or is hair length inextricably linked to crisis?

I recently chopped off a couple of inches, albeit after a breakup, and felt liberated from the split ends and remnants of color gone wrong (the color was right, but my lack of maintenance was wrong oh so wrong). I found myself wanting to go shorter and shorter everyday. Emotions have settled down, but the desire to go shorter hasn't. If not for the polar vortex plaguing the East Coast, I would have ponied up to my hair stylist and made like Jennifer Hudson (and JLaw, to be fair).

So, I ask you, would you ever go shorter just because, or does a breakup (both romantic and platonic) bring out the ear exhibitionist in you?

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Are you afraid of the dark?

Source: R.L. Stine, "Night of the Living Dummy"

When I was younger, I could never bring myself to watch an episode of (or read, for that matter) "Goosebumps". I was afraid of what might be on the screen (mostly the things that go bump in the night) and the bad dreams that come along with them. But, I grew up, got some cajones, and watched. And, I realized, that it wasn't as bad as I'd always imagined it being.

The same can said for a lot of things in life. The first day of college, first day at a new job, first date, etc. I'm definitely guilty of over-thinking things. According to Communications Theory, the Uncertainty Reduction Theory is an individual's desire to reduce tension by seeking out information. This can be either passive or active (sorry, just a little preview of grad school for ya).

Speaking of grad school, I've wanted to go for so long and yet, couldn't bring myself to apply. I finally did and got into a Communications program in DC and I couldn't be happier! Well, I could definitely be more rested, but that's another story. Anyway, when you're constantly writing papers, it doesn't leave much time for writing live-journal style. So, sorry for my absence, but I'll make a better effort to post something every so often. In the meantime, I ask you, what are you afraid of???

Monday, October 28, 2013

Doesn't it feel like everytime we talk, I'm apologizing?

Perhaps because that's true. Though, this time, I'll be honest and say that I have actually thought about you over the course of these few weeks (months?). I hate the excuse, "I've been soooo busy." But, I have actually been quite busy with work and starting grad school (wahoo!), so I think that's somewhat legitimate?

Anyway, the other reason is that I've had serious blogger's block (bahahaha! Like that alliteration?). Every time I think I want to blog about something, I can't figure out how to form sentences---I know, this should bode really well for grad school. I don't watch awards shows, so I can't talk to you about the Emmys (other than the fact that coverage of the red carpet has shown me that I love Kiernan Shipka more and more everyday.), I haven't watched a decent tv show in what feels like weeks--actually, LIES, I watched about 40 mins of Orange is the New Black and I'm a little bit obsessed, and I have this burning desire to SHOP even though my closet is filled with a bunch of stuff I don't really wear (I suppose the whole, "get rid of two things and acquire one new thing" would be applicable here). So, basically WAHHHHHHHHHHH!!!! There's just something about the weather turning colder that makes me more apt to whine. Is that weird? Like, for some reason when it's sunny and warm, how can you really hate on life? You can't. It's sunny, it's warm, people are out, etc. Granted, yes, it's generally hot as Hades and sticky in DC, but STILL. There's just a HUGE possibility that something cool will happen and you'll meet someone interesting, that my inner pessimist is just like, QUIT YOUR WHINING AND ENJOY LIFE!! No such stopping of inner pessimist when it's fall/winter. In fact, I'm pretty sure that I can find even MORE reasons to whine than I normally would. It's really a wonder that I have friends during two seasons out of the year. And, it's times like this that we must really really take the time to find reasons to be grateful for our lives. Don't get me wrong, vent, whine, get pissed, throw something, scream, rinse and repeat. Because pretending to be happy about your life when you're not is really just a recipe for disaster. But! Wallowing for a while (cry, eat ice cream, listen to Adele--sidenote: that woman just gets me) and then, dusting yourself off and realizing that your life is great is kind of like someone finding 5 dollars on the street and giving it to you, apropos of nothing. And, to all of you cynics out there, yes, that really does happen--it's happened to me a total of ONE TIME, but that's enough for me to believe that it can happen to you too!

So, here's my list of things to be grateful for this week:

1) My friends: I, honestly, have the best friends in the world. I think it's easy to take for granted the amazing, intelligent, kind-hearted people in your life on a regular basis, because, hey, they've always been there and they'll always be there, right? HECK NO! Things happen in an instant and you never know when one of them might move away, end the friendship, or God forbid, die, so it's really important to realize, "hey, my friends are awesome and make themselves available to talk out all of my little crises with me just because."

2) Netflix: Yes, I know, following that profound statement about friendship with Netflix seems shallow, but HAVE YOU EVER SEEN THE CHOICES ON NETFLIX?!?! I mean, you could literally waste your life away just watching random stuff that you didn't even know existed before and then, 3 seconds later, be prompted to watch something else incredibly random and wonderful.

3) French fries: Obviously, there is going to be a food item on this list and I eat French fries with almost every meal, so this should come as no surprise. They are just magical and salty and delicious, so I'm pretty happy that they were invented and can be purchased off the Dollar menu at McDonald's for a dollar. A DOLLAR. You can't buy anything for a dollar anymore, but you can buy French fries.

4) My Job: No, not for the reasons you may think. I am not one of those annoying people that really loves their job and takes great satisfaction in going into work everyday. It's actually the exact opposite, but, in this economy where a lot of people are unemployed or working a job that doesn't afford them the ability to live, makes me feel pretty grateful to have a job that pays for my living expenses and vices. Plus, my coworkers are endlessly entertaining in their awkwardness, so it has that going for it as well.

5) MY FRIEND NANCY!!!! Nancy, you are an absolutely wonderful, hilarious, athletic, intelligent, and all around AMAZING human being and yes, you round out the top 5 of things I'm grateful for today. Plus, I know that you're going to rock the heck out of the NYC MARATHON (I did say she was athletic) next weekend!!!!!!! Love you lots girl!<----Here's hoping she reads the blog today, right?