Taking on Life at Full Speed

Learning from the past to make a brighter future

I made it to the Weekend! — August 28, 2015

I made it to the Weekend!

Hey Everyone!

Today was my week day off since I work 4 tens at my current job. Today I ran errands. I had to go to the bank, Best Buy, Bob’s Red Mill, The auto parts store and the grocery store, before the day was over I had also gone to New Seasons. 

I stopped at best buy to get a better photo me case for my iPhone, as I had dropped my phone (which was in its old case) on concrete over the weekend, and I realized that the case I had would not hold up to my clumsy moments, and I needed something more rugged. So I got an otter box. 

I stopped at bob’s red mill for the sole purpose of getting muffin mix, yes, I will go to the store for one item if I really want that one me item. One of the few advantages of city life I guess. 

I had gone to the auto parts store to pick up new windshield wiper blades. Rain is in the forecast this upcoming week, and with the other new I had being old (as in I can’t remember having to replace them since I have had the car, which has been 7 years), and falling apart (literally), so I bought new ones. After I had gotten back to the house I replaced them myself. It seriously was not that hard. I am one of those girls who figures I might as well know how to do it, so when I am in situations where I have to do it, I won’t be completely useless. 

After the auto parts store I had quickly stopped at Bimart to pick up a couple items, before going to Safeway to go grocery shopping. I managed to get everything on my list and then some. 

I came back to the house, replaced my windshield wipers, then baked muffins, and made homemade chicken & pineapple curry. It turned out amazing. It was so good. 

After dinner I made a quick trip to New Seasons, for one item which turned into 8. My mom wanted more of the coconut milk coffee flavored “ice cream” bars, so I went and got two boxes, and 6 coconut milk yogurts. I am definitely grateful to have several New Seasons and Whole Foods around, but the scene that regularly shops there is definitely not my scene. In the 3.5 years I have been dairy free, my mom has slowly come around to the fact that dairy free doesn’t have to taste disgusting, and it actually tastes good. She has found that she prefers the Almond Coconut milk I like, to regular milk. She also likes my dairy free pumpkin pie filling, and she loves the coffee flavored coconut milk “ice cream” bars. It took time, and consistency which was what I needed to get back to normal but being dairy free and minimal gluten is my reality and I now don’t mind it. 

I spent the evening working on knitting and waiting for my VloggerFair video to upload onto YouTube. 

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Fall is upon us!  — August 26, 2015

Fall is upon us! 

Hey Everyone! 

It’s Wednesday! Fall is coming. The kids here in the Portland Public Schools start tomorrow which is crazy, we always started after Labor Day, which basically all the other School districts that are in the metro area within the state of Oregon are starting after Labor Day, like normal. 

I would have liked to have stayed in Seattle a few days longer but real life called and I had to come back. I had fun spending the morning at VloggerFair, but I am glad I missed the drama that went down that afternoon. 

I am trying to spend less time sitting at my computer after work. I spend all day on the computer, and I am trying to reduce my dependence on technology for entertainment when I would be better off reading a book (and it’s not like I don’t have the entire Outlander series waiting to be read). I am trying to spend more time in the evenings and on my days off reading books. 

Weekend Reflection — August 23, 2015

Weekend Reflection

Hey Everyone!

Now that I am home, have unpacked, had a good night sleep, and some normal food I wanted to look back at this weekend and reflect on it a bit.

I did have fun this weekend. I am really glad that I went. This was my first Vlogger / YouTube convention, and I have a feeling it will be my last. Beings that the SacconeJoly’s were the only ones of my favorite vloggers not at this convention, I am good. I realized that while I enjoy watching vlogs, I don’t enjoy making them. I much prefer blogging (obviously….).

Navigating a city I am not familiar with, while getting myself where I need to go on time was a huge deal. When I went off to college 9 years, the idea of learning my way around a small town scared me, and yet this past Friday I took off for Seattle without batting an eyelash.

Whenever I am in Tacoma, I like going by my Dad’s old high school, not just because it is where my dad went to high school, but because its architecture is amazing and it sits overlooking Commencement Bay, which is part of the Puget Sound. I have been by where my mom went to high school here in Portland. it pales in comparison. My Mom’s high school opened in 1960, is of a modern architecture and has no impressive views from any vantage point.

While I am partial to Portland (even though I don’t like living here), though I do enjoy visiting the Tacoma and Seattle area, and seeing Mt. Rainier and the Puget Sound. It is an amazing change of scenery from where I live.

As much as I don’t care for living here, due to politics, the economy, taxes and such, you can’t beat the scenery. While I was in Washington I paid sales tax, which really isn’t a big deal, Oregonians just make a big deal out of it because we don’t have a state sales tax, but have state income tax.

It has been hazy all day, to the point it looks overcast from all the smoke that has settled over the valley from the wildfires.

This trip was definitely something  I needed to do for myself, and to prove to myself that all the work I have put in over the last 9 years hasn’t been a waste. Going away on my own, and going to a big city that I am not familiar with on my own and not having anything bad happen to me just reminded me that moving away, when I can find a better job is something I am capable of. I am up for the challenge and stuff like this weekend doesn’t have to scare me, and I won’t let the fact that something scares me stop me from doing it, if I know that what I am doing is the right thing for me. I am a strong, independent young woman. Going to New York on my own to be a Nanny is proof of that. Keeping safety in mind, there is a lot I want and will go do.

Vlogger Fair  — August 22, 2015

Vlogger Fair 

Hey Everyone!

Today was VloggerFair, which I went to in the Morning. I went to bed around midnight and really didn’t sleep that well because I was in a hotel, in a strange bed and yeah, not much sleep happened. So at about 6:00 this morning I just got up, showered, started packing, went down to breakfast where I just got some sausages, an apple and an orange. I went back to my room, brushed my teeth and finished packing up my stuff before checking out and going to VloggerFair. 

I drove up to Seattle, hunted down a gluten free, vegan bakery to get some muffins and I tried to find a Starbucks which was a fail. How is that possible that I was in downtown Seattle and could not find a Starbucks for the life of me.  

 While I was trying to find the bakery I found the Fremont Troll on accident. How that happened I cannot tell you. 

I finally got back to the area I needed to be in, parked and had the hardest time finding where I was supposed to go and was pretty much walking in circles. I eventually found it, which was good for me. I did get several pictures of the space needle. As you can see in the picture below the sky is all smoky from all the wild fires burning here in the Pacific Northwest.

 I finally made it to the convention center and waited around for it to start. I managed to get a picture with Ellie and Jared when they got there, then waited for the meet and greet to get pictures with Bryan and Missy from Daily Bumps, as well as Cullen and Katie whose channel is just their names. I also got to see Cullen and Katie’s daughter Macey Gaines. By the time I got to Bryan and Missy, Ollie was beyond melted down so Missy’s sister Cassy was walking him around in the stroller. I have no idea who had Jackson (Ellie and Jared’s 2 year old son) for all I know he is still in Utah either with Ellie’s parents or her sister Bonnie. I also got to hang out for a bit with James and Ashley (and their daughter Baby Chick) after James finished his Panal.  

    
   
It was awesome to meet most of my favorite vloggers. 

After I left VloggerFair I had attempted to go down to Pikes Place market to go to the original Starbucks to get the Pikes Place mug as well as another Starbucks to get a Seattle mug, but traffic was horrible, there was no parking and it was like I was back in New York with different scenery so I just left. 

I stopped and got food then some Starbucks in a different town before driving back to Portland. 

I know Portland is wierd, but Seattle is weirder. Portland is really more weird than I care to deal with. 

This weekend was fun, and the first on my own big city that isn’t the city I was raised in adventure I have had. I was amazed at how well I really did in just taking it on like it is normal, which is huge for me. Having gone to New York to be a nanny 4 years ago did me good. 

Seattle Trip — August 21, 2015

Seattle Trip

Hey Everyone!

I wanted to write this quick update post before I call it a night.

I am in fact in the Seattle area tonight, so I can attend VloggerFair tomorrow. I drove up today so I wouldn’t have to be up super early tomorrow and have to leave Portland by 6:00 am kind of thing.

I had talked to one of my friends like a couple weeks ago since I wasn’t sure if she had moved back up here or not yet. She hadn’t but was coming up for the weekend, so she and her sister rode up with me.

On our way up we had stopped in Chehalis for a pit stop to use the restroom and get some coffee. Today I needed coffee even though I rarely drink it any more.

On our way out of the store I had commented on the fact that we hadn’t seen anyone we knew. Chehalis is a small town so there was the chance. As we were getting into the car, my friend was like “Erica, is that?” I then turned to see what she was looking at, and I was like “yeah, (name omitted for privacy)” as I ran over to say hi. Any other person I would have been more composed, but I have known this person my whole life and he is a second dad to me. He knows most of my deep dark secrets and just rolled with it when I told him.

We stopped by and saw where my grandparents used to live when they lived up in this area.

 Once we got my friends sister dropped off, we went by and saw where my dad went to high school and the church that was my Grandfather’s last pastorate and where they stayed once he retired from pastoring.  I then checked into my hotel, we got dinner, hung out at the mall for a bit and saw a movie before I took her back to her parents house and I came back to my hotel room.

That has been my day and now I am signing off for the night.

Ready for change — August 18, 2015

Ready for change

Hey Everyone!

Over the past 9 years Portland has really become the Bain of my existence. I had to move back after college because the job opportunities are greater here, even with that unless you are an engineer of some sort or in the health care fields, you can’t find a decent job here with a bachelors degree. I am working at the best job I have had since I graduated from college and yet I am still unable to support myself and make loan payments each month. Until I started my current job I worked odd jobs here and there which never lasted. 

Real estate prices and property taxes are climbing steadily each year, which prices normal people like myself out of the housing market. 

If it weren’t for the fact that I was forced to move back to my parents house after college, I could not afford to live in the Portland Metro Area. Between not being able to find a job that pays decently with my education and skill set and the ever increasing housing prices, I am looking to find a job and move elsewhere.

I don’t know where I am going to end up but I am willing to move where I can find a job I can support myself on, even if it is someplace I would not have thought of or wanted to move in the first place. I have seen was not being flexible is like in that regards and I don’t want to end up like that. I have learned that being flexible and giving a place a fair shot (2 years at least and when possible) is good. The first year is the hardest, the second year is the getting settled and comfortable year, 3+ years, even if it isn’t your favorite place you have enough invested there that you can see it through or make a change. That second year is really the proving year, you made it through the first rough year and you are in a better place to really feel the waters and see if it is where you want to stay. Granted I am talking about the civilian world where one has a choice in the matter, unlike the military, some missions fields or non profit relief positions where you are send where the man sends you. 

Like I have mentioned I don’t know for sure where I will end up but my gut is telling me that it will be some place between the Rocky Mountains and the Mississippi River. Where I should be looking for jobs and housing and such has been something I have been praying about for a while and seeking guidance from God on, while I do my part and look for and apply for jobs. 

I know I have been all over the place on where I want to live. In an ideal to me situation I could find a job I could support myself on in the mid willamette valley. Realistically I don’t see that happening in the near future. It could happen, but realistically I don’t see it happening. 

Waiting until I can move back Home — August 17, 2015

Waiting until I can move back Home

Hey Everyone!

This weekend went well. I went home Friday and yesterday evening. Friday I spent some time with my sister and her kids, which included lending an extra set of hands and eyes with three kiddos. Last night I went down for church and to see my church family there. 

Saturday I had spent cooking, baking and knitting. The cooking and baking were preparing for this week, so that I wouldn’t have to do much during the week while working and preparing for this next weekend. 

I know I have talked a lot about how I would move back in a heartbeat, which is more true than ever. 

Good Weekend — August 10, 2015
Big City Weekend — August 8, 2015

Big City Weekend

Hey Everyone!

The past couple of weekends I have spent most of them doing what I love, yarn shopping, picking out decorations for my place, cooking, baking and knitting. 

I enjoy cooking and baking. When I had my own apartment to some degree I even enjoyed cleaning it. 

I am doing what I am doing now job wise and living situation wise because it is what I am having to do to get the bills paid. It is not what I am wanting to do career wise. 

So with that being said until the Lord shows me the next step job and living situation wise I will do the job I have to the best of my ability and do what I love to do in the evenings and on the weekends. 

This week I watched a series on Hulu called “Klondike: Quest For Gold” which was a reality documentary series where five people lived like there were part of the Klondike gold rush to experience what it would have been like. About a month or two a go I had seen “Pioneer Quest: a year in the real west” where two couples lived for a year like it was the 1860’s on the frontier. I found both of these shows interesting because it took modern people and made them live as authentically as possible to whatever the quest was. Being a Historian myself I found them interesting because it brought this history to life. Both the gold rush and frontier life fall in to the area and era of history that I am most fascinated with. While all of Pioneer Quest and Moat of Klondike take place in Canada they parallel or include American History. The gold rushes in Alaska and The Yukon involved Americans. 

Learning how normal people lived in different eras of history, is what fascinates me the most. The everyday life, how it is similar and different from now, and how their lives shaped history even when they were one of many. Laura Ingalls Wilder, while growing up and into adulthood probably thought her life was normal and uninteresting, and yet she wrote the series of books beloved by many today. 

Yesterday, beings that I have Friday’s off, I ran errands. I went to Joann’s, where I bought some fall candles and fall candle rings and I also picked up some yarn. I also stopped at Bob’s Red Mill because I needed more flours to mix up my bread flour mix. I stopped at Trader Joe’s, and lastly Safeway before coming back to the house. 

Last night I baked some cranberry orange with almond muffins and some cranberry almond oatmeal cookies. 

Today I spent the day knitting and cooking chicken and vegetable soup. 

Yesterday and today have been awesome. While I have been only doing “normal” stuff, I enjoy it. Figuring out what to cook for dinner can sometimes be a headache but once I get that figured out I enjoy grocery shopping for what I am going to cook and bake for the upcoming week. I also enjoy cooking and baking. Both of these skills have become infinitely more valuable since I developed food intolerances. 

While I am not the biggest fan of living in the big city (I prefer small town life of the two), being near the big city that has grocery store options does make my life easier, and on occasion being in the city is fun. I grew up in, and currently live in the city, while living in a small town while in college, and by the last couple years I was doing good if I left the county once a term. I loved small town life, and I hope that one day I can get back to that kind of lifestyle. 

Hey Everyone!

The past couple of weekends I have spent most of them doing what I love, yarn shopping, picking out decorations for my place, cooking, baking and knitting. 

I enjoy cooking and baking. When I had my own apartment to some degree I even enjoyed cleaning it. 

I am doing what I am doing now job wise and living situation wise because it is what I am having to do to get the bills paid. It is not what I am wanting to do career wise. 

So with that being said until the Lord shows me the next step job and living situation wise I will do the job I have to the best of my ability and do what I love to do in the evenings and on the weekends. 

This week I watched a series on Hulu called “Klondike: Quest For Gold” which was a reality documentary series where five people lived like there were part of the Klondike gold rush to experience what it would have been like. About a month or two a go I had seen “Pioneer Quest: a year in the real west” where two couples lived for a year like it was the 1860’s on the frontier. I found both of these shows interesting because it took modern people and made them live as authentically as possible to whatever the quest was. Being a Historian myself I found them interesting because it brought this history to life. Both the gold rush and frontier life fall in to the area and era of history that I am most fascinated with. While all of Pioneer Quest and Moat of Klondike take place in Canada they parallel or include American History. The gold rushes in Alaska and The Yukon involved Americans. 

Learning how normal people lived in different eras of history, is what fascinates me the most. The everyday life, how it is similar and different from now, and how their lives shaped history even when they were one of many. Laura Ingalls Wilder, while growing up and into adulthood probably thought her life was normal and uninteresting, and yet she wrote the series of books beloved by many today. 

Yesterday, beings that I have Friday’s off, I ran errands. I went to Joann’s, where I bought some fall candles and fall candle rings and I also picked up some yarn. I also stopped at Bob’s Red Mill because I needed more flours to mix up my bread flour mix. I stopped at Trader Joe’s, and lastly Safeway before coming back to the house. 

Last night I baked some cranberry orange with almond muffins and some cranberry almond oatmeal cookies. 

Today I spent the day knitting and cooking chicken and vegetable soup. 

Yesterday and today have been awesome. While I have been only doing “normal” stuff, I enjoy it. Figuring out what to cook for dinner can sometimes be a headache but once I get that figured out I enjoy grocery shopping for what I am going to cook and bake for the upcoming week. I also enjoy cooking and baking. Both of these skills have become infinitely more valuable since I developed food intolerances. 

While I am not the biggest fan of living in the big city (I prefer small town life of the two), being near the big city that has grocery store options does make my life easier, and on occasion being in the city is fun. I grew up in, and currently live in the city, while living in a small town while in college, and by the last couple years I was doing good if I left the county once a term. I loved small town life, and I hope that one day I can get back to that kind of lifestyle.