Posted on April 7, 2015
OK, that might be an extreme reaction to almond butter. I’ll admit that. But it sounds better than what I’m really thinking, which is f*ck you world. I mean, seriously. What kind of a world do I live in when I honestly feel bad about eating almond butter. ALMOND BUTTER. Armchair psychologists, go nuts. (Pun intended.)
I’ve been doing the Whole30 program and one of the key rules is no sugar. In anything. Ever. For 30 days. That includes anything that resembles sugar or is sugary in nature. Like molasses.
Since starting the program, I have been infatuated with reading labels and preaching the anti-sugar gospel to anyone who will listen. I even ordered eight pounds of bacon from a pig farmer in the middle of the country. Because: no sugar. (I had NO idea, before Whole30, that most grocery store bacon is processed using some form of sugar.)
In a moment of sheer exhaustion while rushing through my shopping list, my usual market was out of my Whole30 compliant almond butter and I grabbed another jar of organic created by God himself almond butter. It’s beyond delicious. Like stop you dead in your tracks and make you get down on your knees screaming hallelujah delicious. This morning, as I was packing my lunch, because now I take my lunch to work (who am I?), I read the label.
EVAPORATED CANE SUGAR.
No wonder it’s delicious. IT’S WHOLE30 ILLEGAL.
Let’s be honest here for a second. I haven’t been 100% strict. I’ve been 99% strict. Because: life. But I honestly felt really bad that I didn’t read the label in the market. And then I started thinking what kind of a jerk feels bad about eating something that’s actually clean (no preservatives, nothing I can’t pronounce, all-natural, yadda yadda). I mean, there are people who can’t afford to eat clean because it’s actually quite expensive (depending on where you live). There are people who don’t have clean water. There are people without homes. Without families. Without ALMOND BUTTER FOR ALL THAT IS HOLY.
And then it hit me. I am that jerk. And then I wanted to hit myself. But instead I just said f*ck you almond butter and then grabbed a giant glob of it and spread it on an apple and enjoyed every second. I mean, it does have flaxseed in it. There’s that, right?
So, if you’re wondering what the Whole30 is really like, there you have it. It’s an insane roller coaster of epic proportions. But I wouldn’t change a thing about it. Or about the almond butter I now love to hate.
Posted on March 15, 2015
A few weeks ago I had a quiet weekend. I wasn’t feeling great, had just returned from a work trip and felt a bit worn down by life (as well as a looming cold/flu). The weather – we’ve had a brutal winter in New York this year! – certainly didn’t help. So I became a hermit and hung out in my apartment all weekend, tucked away from the rest of the world. It was magical.
Out of that weekend came a plan to start what I’d soon call my life cleanse. It began with a purge. I cleaned out all of my closets and dressers and found two massive bags of things I haven’t worn and likely won’t wear. Someone somewhere will put this stuff to good use. That was just the beginning.
I decided to take a good look at my life and how I spend my time. It’s something I’ve been thinking about for a while but haven’t addressed. Why? Because that’s some scary shit. To have to acknowledge there are areas of your life that aren’t perfect when you’re a die-hard perfectionist? The stuff nightmares are made of. Really.
Let me start by saying do not feel bad for me. Not for one second. The choices I’ve made in life are mine and mine alone. I’ve made them knowingly and willingly. And I have no regrets. That said, I knew it was definitely time for a change. As I started down this path, I quickly realized a few things.
My life revolves around work. I’ve done this to myself. There are zero expectations from any of my colleagues – or my amazing co-founder – that I do what I do. I am working on finding that ever-elusive balance. This is getting better. Way better. It just means making hard decisions and knowing when to say no. Or yes.
Wine makes me happy. Really happy. And I love it. But. Those. Calories. O. M. G. Since turning 40, those glasses of wine I love so much? Not so much loving my waistline back. I’ve been working out with a trainer three to four days a week and realized I was self-destructing. Work out hard for 60-90 minutes in the morning, glass of wine in the evening? Doesn’t work. At least not right now. So the first thing I decided was to cut all booze for 90 days. Yikes.
I love pizza. I know, some of you are saying “so?” But when I say I love pizza I mean I could eat pizza every day. If I’m honest, when I say pizza I mean all carbs. Especially the bad ones. No bueno. I realized that my diet (that is, my eating habits, not food restriction) was all over the place. So I added pizza and all the other *junk* I sometimes eat to the list. No more yum for me. See you in 91 days, pizza bagel.
I also realized I was obsessed with dating apps. I have an unhealthy obsession with dating and I also have unrealistic expectations. Issues much? I want to be in a relationship but it also scares me. And I get bored easily. Apps like Tinder and OKC make it so easy to come and go. So, on day one of my 90-day life cleanse, I made a conscious decision to remove myself from the dating world. On day two I realized how often I was checking all those apps. Yikes again. So I’m taking this time to really think about what I want in a relationship. It’s really only then that I’ll be able to find the right guy for me. Lucky bastard, that guy.
And shopping. I love to shop. Love love love love love. I shop for myself. I buy things for other people. I give stuff to strangers. Maybe it’s not shopping as much as giving or doing. But it’s gotten a little out of control. Recently I ordered not one but two – two! – pairs of moto boots. I mean, really? I don’t even own a moto. So, yeah, that all went out the window too. Shopping hiatus, party of one? Hi, I’m Erin.
And, finally, I realized I’m living a bit large. When I moved to NYC two years ago I landed in a one bedroom place in Brooklyn. It had a tiny kitchen and a giant bedroom and very little storage. So when I moved to Jersey City in September I moved to a two bedroom, two bathroom gorgeous place with a massive kitchen and tons of closet space (that I soon filled). In hindsight, so very dumb.
I know that some of these things don’t sound like real problems. I have friends who are struggling with far more serious things. Health issues. Financial issues. Work issues. Relationship issues. Issues with their children. You name it. This is why I said don’t feel bad for me. I know these aren’t serious problems. But the first step in fixing any problem is admitting you have a problem, right? Right.
So here I am, 10 days in. No shopping. No dating. No drinking. No pizza. For 90 days. Ten down, 80 to go. This probably sounds like not much fun, right? Have I lost my mind? Perhaps. On the upside, I’ve already made a lot of great progress and I’m excited about this process.
When it comes to work, I’ve been (slowly) reading (aka listening to the audio book version) The One Thing. It’s life-changing.
When it comes to food and wine, I recently started the Whole30 Program. I mean, I already cut booze and good food out of my life for 90 days so might as well do this, too! It also means I’m cooking more, which I love. Yay.
Killing my dating apps? It’s all good. I honestly believe you need to be able to live happily on your own before you’re able to be happy in a relationship. I’ve been living happily on my own for years. What’s another 90 days? As a side bonus, after deleting all those apps, something amazing happened: I stopped being as obsessed with my phone. Go me. (Side note: I’m still obsessed of course but it doesn’t feel as all-consuming at this point.)
My new app obsession? Acorns. Whenever I get the urge to shop, I drop that cash into my Acorns account. It’s awesome. I’ve also made some other major changes here and there but it’s not cool to talk about financial stuff unless you’re a financial person. So I’ll just leave you with a few things that I’ve grown to love over the years and now am loving even more: Mint, Mr. Money Mustache, DailyWorth, this book, and this book. Along with a new financial advisor and a new accountant.
Moving on to my too-big apartment. Fortunately I live in a forgiving building. I’m moving in a few months to a one bedroom that’s absolutely perfect. Before you feel bad that my amazing view is going away… my new pad has wrap-around floor-to-ceiling windows and a balcony (!!) with views of the Statue of Liberty. I can’t wait.
Moving (which I love to do, by the way) also means I’ll get to purge some more stuff (which I also love). Anyone need a sleeper sofa? Two comfy chairs? Bookshelf? Sigh. Sigh. Sigh.
With the free time I’ve found, I’ve managed to read a few (fiction) books and I’m adding yoga to my workout mix. I’m looking into classes. Cooking. Bartending. Painting. I haven’t taken any yet but there are a few on the horizon. All in all, life is good. And it’ll be even better in 80 days. I’m so looking forward to that glass of wine. And a slice.
Be good to yourselves, homechickens. xoxo
Posted on January 11, 2015
Let me start this off by saying I do not represent any of the companies or products below. I mean, I totally *would* and definitely *could*… but I don’t. Also, I totally 100% truly believe with the words in the image* above. But, yeah, even though true beauty comes from within, a little help never hurts. So I put together a completely random collection of beauty related stuff I’ve found and used and that has impressed me so much that I decided to share all of my secret finds with you! Heyyyyy lucky.
FOR THE HAIR
This shampoo. I’ve only been using it for a week but I can already tell the difference. Thanks, Anne.
This blow dryer. For years I’ve used cheap-o hair dryers. Because: short hair don’t care. But I’m telling you, I’m a huge fan of fancy hair dryers now. Thanks, Stacey.
This dusting powder. I don’t know how it works. I don’t really care. It’s awesome. Even though it’s a little weird. Also: believe it when the directions say use sparingly. Thanks, Rachael, my new favorite stylist.
FOR THE FACE
This eyeshadow insurance will give your make-up remover a run for its money. But your eyes will look dope. All. Day. Long. Thanks, Sephora.
FOR THE HANDS
These mittens. OMGOMGOMG life changing. Thanks, Zappos.
FOR THE BODY
This body soap. It’s tingly. And smells awesome. Get it, girl. Thanks, Anne.
This exfoliator thing. I’ve been staring at it in my shower for months. I finally used it. Love. Thanks, Stacey.
This lotion. Spray and go? Yes, please. Truth be told, you gotta work a little bit but it’s oh-so-easy to moisturize now. Thanks, TV commercial.
And now, go forth and be beautiful. Inside and out.
Posted on January 7, 2015
To those of you who have followed my various blogs — and, in particular, my rants about online dating — this one’s for you.
I’ve been meaning to write this for a while and was reminded of it again when on a date. We were talking about Tinder horror stories — as one does when one uses Tinder — and I remembered this gem. It’s really something so stick with me here.
Here’s the sitch: I met a dude on Tinder (a few months ago) and after some back-and-forth texting, we made a plan to meet for drinks. He picked the place, I showed up. I had only seen a few photos of him prior to meeting and while he wasn’t *exactly* a dreamboat, I figured you’ve gotta be in it (read: the dating scene) to win it, so I thought what the hell. He seemed nice enough. When he showed up, I kind of knew immediately that it wasn’t (any kind of) a fit. But I went with it. Our conversation was great. He’s super smart, successful, and all that jazz. Part of the conversation, naturally, was about dating and relationships. I mean, we *did* meet on Tinder. Dude SWORE that he was single — as in not married and not in a serious relationship. I believed him. And agreed to meet him again. In hindsight, I should have gone with my gut on the lack of chemistry and just walked away. But I like to torture myself so I went along to his place for date two.
And then, this happened:
I was drinking wine with dude, who promised to cook risotto. He’s cooking and I’m standing in the doorway of the kitchen, which is about 15 feet away from his front door. The doorbell rings.
Me: You gonna get that?
Him: I’m not expecting anyone.
[Doorbell rings again.]
Me: Um, are you sure you’re not expecting anyone?
Him: [Walks over to the door, looks out the peep hole.] Nobody’s there.
[Doorbell rings again. Someone starts pounding on the door.]
Me: Wow, that’s really weird. Are you sure?
[House phone blows up. Door bell continues to ring. Pounding on the door continues.]
Me: Um, what is going on? This is kind of crazy.
[Dude walks over to the door, opens it four inches, closes door, starts pacing while holding his head in his hands.]
Me: What the fuck is happening right now? Who is that? And why are they beating your door down?
Him: It’s my ex.
Me: OMG. Ex-girlfriend? Like how recent is she an ex? Because that is kind of aggressive for someone you’re not dating.
[House phone and cell phone continue to blow up. Dude takes one of the calls in his bedroom. I’m sitting on the couch drinking wine as quickly as possible. Dude comes back and is standing in the middle of the room, basically shitting his pants.]
Me: Well?!? What is happening right now? There isn’t anything happening between us so now would be a good time to be honest. Is she someone you WERE dating or ARE currently dating?
Him: [Clearly freaking out] Are dating. We are dating.
Me: [Blowing a gasket] Are you fucking crazy? OMG. WHY ARE YOU ON TINDER? This is a total asshole move. And I didn’t sign up for this.
[All this time, the door bell continues to ring, the pounding gets more aggressive, the house phone continues to blow up, dude’s phone continues to blog up. Girl starts screaming: I CAN HEAR HER. LET ME IN. Dude sits down at his computer to look something up, picks up house phone and makes a call.]
Me: Who was that?!?
Him: Building security. They’re coming up to escort her out of the building and off the property.
Me: OMG! You’re kicking your GIRLFRIEND out of the building?
Him: What else am I supposed to do?
Me: Well, for one get the fuck off Tinder.
Him: Can I make you some risotto?
Me: You are seriously insane. There will be no dinner. There’s no us. This is the last time I’ll ever see you. You really need to get your shit straight.
[I decide, because of how insanely aggressive this chic was, that I’ll sit tight for an hour to give her a chance to leave. And then I’d leave. I mean, he’s an asshole but I felt like he was harmless. I was more worried about putting my own personal safety in jeopardy if this chic stuck around. Dude sits down on other end of couch and proceeds to get ripped.]
Me: So now that we’ve cleared all that up, what is the deal?
Him: She’s my girlfriend. She’s been my girlfriend for over a year. We’ve been on and off. [Then five minutes later.] We’ve been on and off the last few months because she hacked into my phone and caught me texting with other girls.
Me: Oh. My. God. Why exactly are you on Tinder again?
Him: Well, she’s not the one. She’s not someone I would marry.
Me: So you’re on Tinder to find a wife? Why don’t you do the right things and end it with her if you know now that eventually you will anyway.
Him: It’s not that easy. I’m a guy. I have needs. [Me: trying not to throw up.] I mean, she’s a good girl but she’s just not for me.
[Dude continues to blah blah blah wah wah wah until his sister-in-law blows up his phone and he finally answers. Apparently, girl un-friends all of his friends and family on Facebook and calls them to tell them she just caught him with another girl. OMG THAT WAS ME. What. The. What. I wish I could have told her what a liar her boyfriend is but there was no way I was getting in the mix. And she obviously caught him once — or many times — before sooooo.]
Him: Well, I’m single now. Can I kiss you?
Obviously, he got a giant no and a good old-fashioned belly laugh. In. His. Face. He continued to drink more and to try to convince me he’s single. He asked me out again. He went on and on about all kinds of nonsense. Finally, an hour later I tell him that we’re leaving. He’s walking out ahead of me and he’s going to deal with her and I’m ignoring both of them. If anything happens, I’ll call the police. As we’re leaving, I look out the peep hole to see if she somehow got back into the building. Wouldn’t you know it… the peep hole doesn’t work. Amaze. We leave the building. She’s gone. I grab the first cab I see and hightail it out of there. I’m finally home and I get a text alert.
Him: Did you make it home yet?
Him: So now that I’m single, can we hang out again?
Me: [After checking Tinder and seeing that he was *just* on it…] Seriously, all of that crazy just happened and you’re already trolling Tinder again?!
Him: No I’m not. I’m in bed.
Me: Then why does Tinder show that you were active five minutes ago?
Him: What if I was checking out your profile / pictures?
Me: Then you would have said that. Good night. Good luck with your girlfriend.
Un. Be. Liev. Able. Truly. Dude honestly does not know how to tell the truth. About anything. He continued to text and ask me out over the course of the next week. Obviously, I never saw him again. I mean. This guy. I can’t even. Douchebag of epic proportions. But, I have a good (?) story. So there’s that.
Posted on January 7, 2015
A few weeks ago, I sat down with a colleague / dear friend and basically had a meltdown about my addiction to technology and being always on. So, with that conversation in mind, over the holidays I took some time to really try to disconnect and to be more present. I started with Facebook and Twitter.
And, people, let me tell you… the struggle is real.
At first I just tried to not check / not post / not engage. Dumb. I mean, who was I kidding?! So then I had to get a little more aggressive with my digital detox. And by that I mean I took Facebook and Twitter off my iPhone. GONE. DONE. HOLY SHIT. They’re both still on my Android but I’m logged out. So it’s not as easy to check nonstop, which I found I was doing. WHOA. Was I ever. And by that I mean: all. the. time. All day. Throughout the night. When out with friends. When out on dates. While waiting for you-name-it. As soon as I’d get to a subway stop with wifi. On planes. On trains. In Ubers. While on the phone. While in meetings. I mean, for fuck’s sake. What was I thinking?!
But change is good, right? And nobody *really* needs to see 8,000 pics of Baxter and my manis and pedis, or know my whereabouts and the various drinks / eats / sights that are part of life in the Big Apple. OH, BUT THEY TOTALLY DO! Not. Although I’m embracing this new *freedom*, I’m also still active on both Facebook and Twitter, and will probably always be. It’s partly the industry I’m in and it’s also the best way — for me anyway — to stay in touch with both family and friends. So on some level it has become a necessary evil.
However. I’ve realized that once I made it a little more difficult to log-in, the desire to do so also decreased. And just like that, I feel like I got part of my life back. I’ve read more (when I’d normally be on social media). I’ve listened to more audio books (when I’d normally be on social media). I’m more present with friends and colleagues. I’ve slowed down a lot. And I feel like my head has calmed down too. SO YAY! New year, new me. Blah. Blah. Blah.
Next up: convincing myself that I don’t need to break the world record for email response time. And please don’t email me now to test me. I’m off to read a book. Riiiiiiiight after I post this to, yeah yeah yeah, Facebook and Twitter. So, fuck off*.
* I just finished reading Ev’s awesome post on Medium, that you may have already seen as it’s been making the rounds on the interwebs. Anywho, the ending? Pure genius. So genius in fact that I had to figure out how to work it into this post. You know what they say about imitation being the sincerest form of flattery? Yeah, that.
Posted on September 1, 2014
I get a lot of questions and comments about my tattoos. From random strangers. And by that I mean a LOT. It kind of makes sense considering I have a lot. But there are times when I don’t want to leave the house without a long-sleeved shirt and pants because just by leaving the house in clothes that show my ink leaves me open to a world of questions from basically any person on the street.
- Did that hurt? Yes.
- How many do you have? I lost count.
- Which one hurt the most? Mostly on whether or not I had tequila prior.
- How much did that cost? It depends on both the shop and the artist. (And, yes, people ask me that.)
- So how much are in you for now? I lost count. (Let the guessing begin.)
- What made you decide to get tattoos? I don’t know. Why did you decide, total stranger, to ask me about it?
- How many more are you getting? I don’t know.
- Where do you go? Why? Are you planning on going there too?
- What do your parents think? Well, my dad passed away but I’m guessing he’d approve of the memorial I have in his honor. (Weird, right? I’m FORTYSOMETHING years old.)
- How long have you been getting tattooed? I was born this way. Go away.
And the list goes on.
Honestly, there are days when I LOVE talking about my tattoos. Especially with people who have a genuine interest and are interested in the art and culture of tattooing. Like today. I was getting out of the car in Jersey City and some guy yelled out “that’s a f*cking awesome butterfly” which actually made me jump because it was otherwise quite peaceful. I also forgot I have a (new!) butterfly on the back of my arm so it took a few seconds to register. Then he went on to say he has 28 and is addicted. And so forth and so on. Those moments, I’m cool with. Usually.
But then there are days when I think… what if I just started going up to everyone wearing striped shirts and started asking random questions.
Was it hard to button that up? How long did it take you to put it on? How much did it cost? How many striped shirts do you own? What made you decide to get a striped shirt? Where do you buy them? Your parents must be so proud.
Yeah. Maybe I’ll try that tomorrow. Because I have no idea where I was going with this post. In the meantime, go forth and be nice to people with tattoos. And, in fact, be kind to everyone. It’ll make the world a much better place.
10 things you should never say on first dates (or second, third, fourth) to girls with short hair. Ever.
Posted on August 29, 2014
- Have you ever had long hair? No.
- I prefer girls with long hair. So go find a girl with long hair.
- Are you going to grow your hair out? For you? No. Not a chance.
- You’re really pretty but you’d be a knockout with long hair. You’d be really hot with [insert any number of things, really].
- What made you decide to cut your hair so short? Why does it matter?
- I’d love to see what you look like with long hair. Not happening.
- What’s the longest your hair has ever been? Right now? This long.
- Did you have long hair when you were a little girl? Not even going there.
- I’ve never dated anyone with short hair. Well, let’s definitely not change that.
- Do you ever wear wigs? Go away.
Posted on August 26, 2014
The tree-lined streets.
All of the charm that makes up Brooklyn.
All of the brownstones.
My favorite nail salon.
The guy who owns the bodega on the corner. Who will I take sangria to in Jersey City?!
My UPS and FedEx guys.
OK, and the other guy who owns the other bodega on the other corner. He doesn’t get sangria but he’s nice.
And the list goes on. My time in Brooklyn was amazing. I’m excited to have lived here and I’m excited for change. Lucky for me, the list of things I’ll miss is way longer than the list of things I won’t. Which, to me, says it was all good. Wondering what I won’t miss?
The trees on the block that smell like semen.
And the dry cleaner who lost my favorite DVF dress.
And that is all. For now.