Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Where in the World Wednesday

After missing out on Classy in Philadelphia's Where in the World Wednesday for the past 2 weeks, I certainly am not going to forget today! In fact, I've been thinking about this all week and am quite excited!

As always, the idea behind WITWW is to post a picture of you someplace in the world. It doesn't have to be somewhere foreign or tropical, just somewhere you consider traveling. In fact, it could even be in your own hometown! And, as a new twist, you can even post a picture or two of someplace you wish to travel to. Ahhh, the possibilities...

If you do decide to participate, please feel free to use Feris' button, and remember to link back up with Jess so we can all follow each other's travels!

Today I am heading back to Boston to what has been referred by some as my Mecca:

Yep, you heard me, I am a Red Sox fan, and I finally made it to Fenway. It was freezing and windy as all get out this day (definite downside to being in a city on the water) but I was almost too excited to notice. My Uncle kindly let me walk all around the Park (off season, so it was closed) and graciously stopped every few feet so I could take yet another picture. I was in heaven!

Monday, March 29, 2010

A long overdue award

I received the Master of Karate and Friendship award from one of my favorite bloggers, Ashley at Kiwis and Cocktails ages ago and am just now getting around to it...pathetic, I know! But, hey, better late than never, right? I think so, too.

The Rules:
1. List 6 things you are a master in.
2. Pass it on the 6 bloggers you think are masters at friendship, and make blogging so awesome!

I am a master in/at:

1. Bargain hunting! I must say that I am pretty fantastic at finding and taking advantage of sales, especially when it comes to clothes! Awesome: yes! Downside: reinforces my already (sometimes) unnecessarily frugal nature.

2. Quiche-making. Seriously, I make the most delicious quiche.

3. Sarcasm. I'm naturally sarcastic and have a very sarcastic sense of humor.

4. Random historical facts about Medieval England, especially the Tudor Royal Family...this is, obviously, my nerdy claim to fame, but I do love history!

5. Spending time with my family. It's just the three of us (Mom, Daddy, me) and I love just having dinner with them, or meeting my Mom for lunch or randomly stopping by the house for 5 minutes. We're close and I like it that way!

6. Libraries. I am a master at finding them in just about every town I visit and at using them...I cannot even keep track of the number of books I have on hold at the Library.

And, 6 bloggers who are Master's at Friendship are:

Jess at LittleMsSunshine

Kaity at Ambition Never Goes Out of Style

Courtney at With Gratitude

Micaela at Dolce Vita

Jamie at Probably Jamie

Katie at Love and Peace

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Let's talk vitamins...

This morning as I was refilling my vitamin holder I felt very much like an old lady...perhaps it's because I use one of those travel pill holders, or perhaps it's because I take 5 pills each day and that seems excessive for a 23 year old. Haha...

So, what do I take, you might ask:

1. Flaxseed Oil (2 pills)
2. Folic Acid
3. Women's Daily Vitamin
4. Calcium

The Women's Daily Vitamin and Calcium seem quite self-explanatory. Do we, as females, ever truly get enough calcium from our diet alone? Probably not; and since we're more prone to osteoporosis than males, an increased amount of calcium never hurt. I feel very smart typing this (haha...), but I have to admit that I wouldn't be taking calcium if my mother hadn't encouraged me to do so. Osteoporosis runs in our family and she's right: it's better to start combating it now than when I'm older and it's possibly too late.

Now, the Flaxseed Oil and Folic Acid seem a little odd...I started taking these in highschool to help with some depression that I was battling. Even though I'm a huge proponet of counseling, I'm not a big fan of drugs. Don't get me wrong, their benefits in the right person and right environment can be remarkable, but I, personally, hate taking prescribed drugs of any form. So, this combination worked a bit like a mood stabilizer for me, and I saw the effects almost immediately. While I no longer battle depression, I still take flaxseed and folic acid, in part, as a mood stabilizer, but mostly because both supplements are good for you!

Flaxseed oil contains essential fatty acids (think Omega-3 here, folks) that can help lower cholesterol, protect against heart disease, treat acne, promote healthy hair and nails, etc. It's also a good source of fiber.

Folic acid is typically associated with pregnant women because it's essential in the fetus' brain and spinal cord development. But, it is also essential for the metabolic processes going on in our bodies, specifically in the synthesis of nucleic acids and the formation of heme (iron-carrying component of hemeglobin) in red blood cells. A lack of folic acid often results in anemia.

So, now you know all of my dirty little vitamin secrets, and perhaps feel as though you've just sat through a science lecture.

Do you all take any daily vitamins, or am I the only one who let's out my inner 75 year old woman?

Friday, March 26, 2010

Fill in the Blank Friday

I've been rather absent from blogland this's been busy and I just haven't been in much of a blogging mood. I missed out on Where in the World Wednesday 2 weeks in a row now! That is completely unacceptable. Ugh...time to get back into the swing of things with a little Fill in the Blank Friday:

1. The best piece of advice I was ever given was to listen to my instincts. Actually paying attention to myself and the vibes that I get from people, places, things, etc has helped me make a lot of really good decisions, including where to go to college and what kind of friends to surround myself with.

2. If I had a million dollars to give to one charity I would give it to the World Health Organization, specifically for education about and prevention of Female Genital Mutilation (not lovely, I know) that really a charity if it's part of the United Nations? Oh well, I believe in what they do and would love to help.

3. If I got to choose my "last meal" it would be butternut squash ravioli in a sage cream sauce, lots of hot, crusty bread with a little basil butter, a giant ceasar salad and cheesecake for dessert.

4. My hair is behaving itself today, and I love it! It has fresh red and blonde highlights for a little fun, and is soft and healthy.

5. If at first you don't succeed try, try again...and if that still doesn't work, realize that not everyone is meant to succeed at everything. Chalk it up to a learning experience and move on...

6. I have always been very talkative. I talk to myself, I talk in my sleep and I've been known to babble at just about anyone.

7. Oh...and by the way... trying to photograph dichroic fused glass earrings for a giveaway is tough! Sure, I can get a picture of the basic earrings, but one showing the gorgeous pattern on the glass and the way the light plays off of it is a whole other story...

Friday, March 19, 2010

Fill in the Blank Friday

It's that time again...time, for Fill in the Blank Friday, that is! I look forward to this all week, and am always excited to see what Lauren's questions will be.

1. Today I'm wearing a raspberry-colored cardigan with jewel buttons over a black cami, jeans and cozy boots to keep my feet warm in this snow.

2. My favorite childhood food was pizza or cookies and my favorite food now is simple pasta with lots of veggies (and still cookies)!

3. A day that I'm too busy to have a conversation with my Mom and/or best friends is a day that I'm too busy.

4. The last movie I saw was: Remember Me, which was wonderful and the next movie I want to see is The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus or The Last Station.

5. My favorite smell is lavender because it's peaceful, lovely and fresh.

6. A weird little quirk I have is preferring to take the 2nd or 3rd item from the shelf when I'm purchasing things in a store. There's something about taking the first item that I don't like. This is especially true with books; I like to hunt towards the back of the stack for my chosen copy.

7. When I take personality quizzes they always say I'm a nurturing ambivert who likes to be in control...and I think that's pretty spot on.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Because I'm an all-things-Irish loving, History nerd...

Happy Saint Patrick's Day, everyone!!

This is my 2nd favorite holiday, coming up just behind Christmas. I love an excuse to wear my favorite color: green, to get in touch with my 1/4 Irish heritage, to chow down on Irish soda bread and I get to rock out the The Pogues, The Young Dubliners and Flogging Molly without getting too many odd looks from my coworkers. Today is also a fabulous excuse to drink too much beer, throw back a few Irish car bombs (my fave!) and get a tad too loud with good friends...all for the sake of Ireland (supposedly)!

But, I also love this holiday because we get to celebrate Ireland and the country's wonderfully colorful history. I know, I know, I'm showing my true colors as a nerd here, but I just can't help myself. I love Irish history and folklore!

So, here are just a few historical tidbits about Saint Patrick's Day for you file away in your never know when you might need a bit of trivia:

- Saint Patrick was actually Romano-British, but was kidnapped by Irish raiders and taken to Ireland as a slave when he was young. He later escaped, but believed he was called back by God to save the pagan Irish.

- The shamrock, which typically has only 3 leaves and has become the symbol of Saint Patrick's Day (and Ireland), is believed to have been used by Saint Patrick to explain the Holy Trinity to the pre-Christian Irish.

- Blue was originally the color associated with Saint Patrick and this holiday.

- Outside of Dublin, Ireland's biggest Saint Patrick's Day celebrations are in Downpatrick, County Down where the saint is rumored to be buried.

- Chicago has dyed it's river green every Saint Patrick's Day since 1962.

- On March 17, 1776, George Washington issued General Orders from Cambridge, MA stating that the password for the day would be "Boston" and its reply would be "Saint Patrick".

- Saint Patrick's Day is believed to have been celebrated in Ireland since before the 1600's as a break in the Lenten season for the Irish Catholics, but wasn't officially recognized as a public holiday until 1903.

- The first recorded Saint Patrick's Day parade in the world was organized by the Irish Society of Boston and held on March 18, 1737 in (obviously) Boston, MA.

I hope everyone is wearing their green and enjoys this fun holiday! And, if you are participating in the beer guzzling be safe!

(source for historical facts)

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Little Letters

I've seen a lot of bloggers put up posts of little letters, and considering the fact that I often write little letters in my head, I thought I'd try putting a few in writing today

Dear hair dryer,
I cannot believe you actually sparked, causing a little flame to start and therefore making my heart to stop for just a second this morning.
That seems a bit overdramatic don't you think?
Love, Erin

Dear Target,
You and I are already on shakey ground since you stopped carrying 2 of my favorite hair products, so your website had better be wrong when it says that you do not carry my hair dryer in stores...or else!
Love, Erin

Dear Liam Neeson,
You are wonderfully handsome in Rob Roy
and I could stare at you for hours!
I especially like it when you opt to not wear a shirt.
Love, Erin

Dear Skype,
Thank you for allowing Jamie and I to randomly IM each other through out the day so we don't have to save all of our random thoughts for when Colorado and Australian times match up and we're both awake.
Love, Erin

Dear Australia,
Is it really necessary for you to be so far away?
I feel like we could come up with a nice compromise that involves you floating a tad closer.
Love, Erin

Dear Liberty of London Dunclare Black Bowl,
Thank you for matching my existing black and white dishes and for being so affordable that I was able to snatch you up without feeling an ounce of guilt. Your scalloped edges and cheerful yellow interior are a lovely addition to my dinnerware.
Love, Erin

Monday, March 15, 2010

A few sappy ramblings about my bestie and Australia

So, in all honesty, I've never really had much of a desire to visit Australia and New Zealand...ever. I'm a Europe girl through and through and am totally ok with that. I'm far more of a city girl than a beach girl, and in my head AU and NZ were always just a giant beach. Well, fret not everyone (Ashley and husband. lol), I know better now, and am well aware of all the many splendid things that these 2 countries have to offer.

But, yet, I am still willing to admit that the biggest, most compelling and just about only reason that I want to visit AU and NZ, spend the big bucks on a plane ticket (goodbye lovely, growing savings account) and sit through a horrifically long flight is my best friend, Jamie. I miss her.

When she studied abroad a year and a half ago we weren't on the best terms. We were ready for a break from each other and we were each going down different paths in our lives. Plus, we both knew she'd only be gone for 6 months, so, really, it was no big deal. Well, she came home, we had a tearful, hug-filled greeting at the Denver airport and it was just like old times again. I've never met another person who just gets me like Jamie does. Seriously, folks, we are hetero-lifemates, through and through. Anyway, then Jamie got a job in Denver and I swear, it was like all of my dreams came true: my bestie was going to be in the same state as me again! This was especially exciting because my Baltimore bestie, Corey, lives across the country and I hated having both of my best friends so far away.

So, we lived it up as 2 single, 20 somethings for a fabulous year, but I knew from the minute Jamie set foot back on American soil that she wasn't here to stay. She wasn't finished with Australia yet, and I know my bestie: she's an adventurer who's set on making her dreams a reality. This is, by far, one of Jamie's qualities that I most respect, envy and admire. So, the day Jamie told me she'd applied for grad school back in AU I wasn't the least bit surprised. Sad, yes, but mostly happy for her.

James has been back in AU for a month now and she's loving it! I love hearing about all of her adventures and am so thankful for Facebook, email and Skype because they allow me to still be a part of my best friend's life (and she a part of mine) even though she is across the world from me. I love that she finally started a blog for all of her travel adventures (check it out here); and I love that reading about her time in AU is making me actually want to visit the country, not just the place where my best friend currently resides. Yes, visiting my bestie is still my main reason, as I said before, but at least now I have a growing appreciate for the country itself. I actually desire to experience the adventures the country has to offer.

(stolen from Jamie)

"The most beautiful discovery true friends make is that they can grow separately without growing apart."

~Elizabeth Foley

Friday, March 12, 2010

Fill in the Blank Friday

I seriously love Lauren at the little things we do...'s weekly feature! It is a fun little thing to do on a Friday, and I look forward to it every week. It makes me think, and I like that!

1. The best day ever was when I moved into my current apartment. It's all mine, no strings attached and has completely become my haven. Plus, moving into it meant that my final tie to the Ex was gone and there are very things that are more exciting than that!

2. My favorite meal of the day is breakfast because I love breakfast foods, I love starting my day off on a good note, and going out for breakfast is my greatest little pleasure in life. And, because breakfast is the perfect excuse to drink excessive amounts of coffee while chatting with loved ones.

3. This weekend will be about pampering myself with a new hair cut and highlights and getting a manicure with my Mom; it'll be about relaxation because I'm kind of cranky today and just need to chill out a bit; and hopefully it'll be about seeing a movie with my good friend and getting ahead on my homework.

4. Never in my life have I smoked pot. I feel like that is an unusual thing for someone my age to say, but I've never had a single ounce of desire to try it and I cannot see myself ever trying it in the future.

5. The only thing better than a chocolate chip cookie is a fresh, homemade, warm out of the oven chocolate chip cookie!

6. I could really do with some Jamie and Corey in my life. I'm going through bestie withdrawals and would kill for a night out with those two ladies...but, alas, we all live far, far away from each other so phone calls, texting and skype will have to do for now.

7. The most recent thing I bought myself was the lovely Second Thoughts necklace from LuLu's. I wore it earlier this week and love it! I wear a lot of charcoal grey, so it'll be nice to have a little something to jazz up my grey with. Oh, and I just bought placemats for my new table!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Where in the World Wednesday

Can you believe it is already Wednesday?! I feel like the past 2 days have gone by extremely fast...not that I'm complaining or anything.

Since it is already the middle of the week that means it's time for Classy in Philadelphia's Where in the World Wednesday feature!

The idea behind WITWW is to post a picture of you someplace in the doesn't have to be somewhere foreign or tropical; just somewhere that you consider traveling. It could even be in your hometown!

If you decide to participate, please use Feris' button, and share a link to your post with Jess.

Today, I'm off to Boston...waiting for the T at the Science Park station. Don't let the gorgeous blue skies, sunshine and my lack of a coat fool you, it was a chilly February day! But, obviously, a lovely day. And yes, that's my favorite: the Zakim Bridge.

Where in the world are you today?!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Boston, Day 1...finally

I don't know what's up with me, but I just haven't been overly inspired to blog the past couple of days. I know I'm not typically a daily blogger, but I usually have lovely ideas of things that I want to blog about daily...but not the past few days. Meh, oh well!

So, rather than babble at you all too much, I'll leave you with just a few pictures from my first evening in Boston. I know, I know, I've been back for 3 weeks and I haven't truly blogged about my trip once, so here's hoping this post motivates me to blog about days 2, 3 and 4 as well!

Since the majority of my first day was spent sitting on an airplane, reading Accounting homework and sporadically dozing, I do not have very many pictures. Plus, it was starting to get dark by the time I landed, and I am not an overly skilled nightime photographer. Ha! Nonetheless, I did take several pictures to remember Day 1 by:

Southwest Airlines was in the Valentine's Day spirit! I loved the festive streamers and balloons that helped to distract me from my flying-solo nerves.

Zakim Bridge. Probably one of Boston's more well-known pieces of architecture, this bridge is one of my favorites and always makes me smile because if I'm driving past it, that means I'm in BOSTON!

We ate at the Barking Crab (red and yellow striped awning in the bottom, left of the picture on the right), which was right on the water and insanely cool inside. The crab cakes were to die for, the beer was cold and refreshing and I tried my very first scallop...yum!

Don't you just love the crabbing pots filled with fairy lights?! Such fun!

My Uncle's original plan was to eat in The North End, but due to it being dinner time and a busy part of the city, parking was nearly non-existent. But, that's ok because just driving through one of my favorite parts of the city and passing by the Old North Church were more than enough to make me sigh with happiness.

I was in Boston, and therefore, I was in heaven...

Friday, March 5, 2010

Happy Birthday, Grandpa Don!

Today you would've been 86 years old.
This is the first birthday without you, and you were very much in everyone's thoughts today.
All of the siblings were in contact today, and Grammy was doing well. Uncle Eldon sent her flowers to let her know he was thinking about her, and I think that meant a lot to her.
There was something a little surreal about you not being here today, but you've still managed to bring everyone together.

I miss you, I love you, I think of you often.

Fill in the Blank Friday

It's time for this week's Fill in the Blank Friday, hosted by Lauren over at the little things we do... Feel free to participate, or to head on over to Lauren's wonderful blog to see what other bloggers are saying this week.

1. One thing I MUST do before I die is travel abroad with my parents. I especially want to make sure my Mom makes it to Paris someday because she needs to stand in the Hall of Mirrors at Versailles and have her breath taken away. I want both of them to explore Germany so they can see why I immediately fell in love with the country, the people and the culture. I want my parents to experience the hustle-and-bustle of London and become immersed in that melting-pot city. I want them to be able to take in the cobbled streets of Stratford-Upon-Avon and fall in love with the area's history. I really just want them to be able to experience the amazing things that they've allowed me to experience myself.

2. I would rather see a movie with friends than take out the trash any day.

3. If I could give my younger self one piece of advice it would be to try to come to some understanding about how my father showed his love, and to not pick so many fights with him. Looking back now, it is very apparent that my father always loved me (and still loves me unconditionally) and tried to show me in his own way, but because it wasn't with outright "I love you's" I didn't get it, and I was hurt. I get it now, and we have a great relationship.

4. If I won the lottery tomorrow, I'd pay off my school loans, take my parents to Europe, put a lot into savings, put some into my parents' savings, pay off my car, send my parents on a getaway to wherever they wanted to go, buy 2 tickets to Australia for Corey and I to visit Jamie, do some shopping, etc...

5. The best surprise ever was my best friend flying in from Indiana for my 21st birthday.

6. My biggest fault is feeling the need to vent about things over and over and over again, rather than just getting it out of my system the first time and moving on. I can also be too senstive and hold too much of a grudge for my own good.

7. My biggest strength is being able to look on the bright-side. I find myself doing this at work all the time. I may not always be good at applying this trait to my own life, but if someone is venting/complaining/etc to me, I can usually find the positive in all of the negative.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Where in the World Wednesday

Even though it's almost 8:00 pm, which means my bedtime is only a few hours away, I promise I haven't forgotten about Classy in Philadelphia's weekly feature: Where in the World Wednesday.

The idea behind WITWW is to post a picture of you someplace in the world. It doesn't have to be somewhere foreign or tropical; just somewhere you consider traveling.

If you decide to participate, make sure to use Feris' button and to post your blog link to Jess' blog. Also, check out the other participants in this feature to find some great new blogs to read!

The Molly Brown House in Denver, Colorado- Nov. 2009
I've always enjoyed visiting this historic residence and my last trip was no different. Jamie and I both had a day off together, so we toured the house and played dress-up with the period hats!

Today, I at my lunch at the local city park because:
the sun is shining,
the skies are blue
and it feels like Spring.

I sat on a park swing, gently pushing myself with the tip of my toe,
and read my book,
and listened to little kids giggle while feeding the ducks,
and learned that the big white ducks are quite vocal about their personal space.

I enjoyed it so much that I wanted
to stay in the sunshine
on that park swing
for the rest of the afternoon...

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

February Goals Recap

I cannot believe it is already March...February truly flew by! I know a lot of people find the month of February to be a winter-blues kind of month, but I've actually always enjoyed it. It's short and sweet and always brings to mind flowers and various shades of pink (thank you, Hallmark for Valentine's Day).

Since the date on my calendar says March 2nd, it appears it's time for a February 2010 Goals Recap. I apologize if you get tired of reading this every month, but it's the best way to hold myself accountable for my goals:

1. Pay all bills on time. Done and done! My Comcast bill was paid on time for February, as were all of my other, easier for me to remember to pay, bills. Here's hoping this becomes a habit for me...time will tell as to whether or not I relapse into my late-Comcast-paying ways. (+1)

2. Finish the books I've started. I barely managed this one, but I did finally finish a book that has been sitting half-read on my bookshelf for a year: Neither Here Nor There by Bill Bryson. Whew! Even with one finished half-read book under my belt, it must be said that I am far too friendly with the Library. It is just too convenient to stop in whenever I get the urge (it's on my way home from work)! (+1)

3. Continue to work-out 4-5 times per week. Except for the partial week that I was in Boston, I definitely made this happen again. And, I did workout Thursday, Friday and Saturday after getting back from Boston, plus I did a lot of walking while I was back East, so I'm going to count this one as a success. (+1)

4. Call Grammy more. I only spoke with her once this past month, so while 1 phone call is better than the no phone call month of January, it still isn't great. Technically, yes, I did call Grammy more, but my single phone call is a bit pathetic. (-1)

5. Write to Grandpa and Grandma twice monthly. I actually kind of, sort of forgot about this goal this month and only managed to send one thing: a postcard from my Boston trip. Ooops! (-1)

6. Keep track of the books I've read. I'm still truckin' along on Goodreads, and have to attribute my success with this goal to that lovely website! Loves it! (+1)

So, overall I managed to achieve 4 out of my 6 goals this month. And, once again, the ones that I'm lacking in are really the most important ones. Sigh... As I said last month, I will strive to be better at communicating with my grandparents in March.

How are everyone else's 2010 goals/resolutions going?

On a totally unrelated note, it is sunny, warm and gorgeous in Northern Colorado today!! I took my lunch to a local park to soak up some sun and even drove with my windows down. It's just lovely!