All posts by Eryn

Why I’m a Failure at Blogging

You’re probably looking at the title of this post wondering, “Why would she even write something like this for her blog?”

And you’re right. I’m asking myself that too. But, here’s the thing. In terms of being a “blogger”, I do fail at it. Here’s why.

Failure at Blogging

I go for long periods of time where I just don’t post.

A long period in the blogging world is a few days. I sometimes go for a week or two without posting anything. New content is key. Especially when you’re trying to build your audience. And if you don’t post, there isn’t new content for new and old readers to read. But it’s okay, because I didn’t start this blog to have hundreds of thousands of readers (even though it would be nice). I post when I feel the inspiration, or feel I have some worthy to say.

I forget to comment on other blogs.

Another key piece of blogging 101. To build a following, you must comment and connect with other bloggers. I try really really hard to do this. But sometimes, weeks go by when my time is limited, and I forget. It has nothing to do with the blog I’m reading or the content. I honestly just forget. Having said that, I might start setting reminders to check out my favorite blogs and comment on them.

Twitter and I have a love/hate relationship.

Yes. I love social media. I have a degree in it after all. But when it comes to using my own personal twitter, I find that sometimes I just don’t have the energy for it. I’ll go in spurts where I’ll find lots and lots of content to schedule via Hootsuite, including my blog posts, and try to connect with all the right people, and grow my following. And I’ll be really good about it for like 2 weeks. And then, something happens, and it all goes to hell. Literally. At the time of this post, I can’t tell you the last I actually scheduled something for Twitter (okay, it was probably in January). Or even really interacted with people on Twitter (again, that was probably last month). But whatever, you get the point.

My blog doesn’t have a niche.

My blog will never have a niche. Ever. I like to talk. I ramble a lot. This blog is essentially me thinking out loud. When I finally figured out a tagline I actually liked, see header above, I realized that it’s okay to not have a niche, because this blog is all about my musings. It’s who I am. I don’t fit into the healthy living category or the beauty category, or even the book review category. It’s a lifestyle blog. Purely because it’s the ramblings of my life.

It’s disorganized, random and sometimes unruly.

And no, I’m not talking about my life or my hair. Yes, my blog is all of those things. You many not be able to see it, but I certainly do on the back end. And boy is it a disaster. I’ve cleaned it up quite a bit since I redid the blog. But it’s still not organized. I just hope none of you notice, but you probably will now that I mentioned it.

But what I don’t fail at

Loving my blog to pieces. My blog is an extension of me. So it may fail in the traditional blogging sense, but to me, it’s a huge success and something I am oh so proud of.

Life in Motion by Misty Copeland – A Book Club Link-Up

I can’t believe March is already coming to a close. How is this year flying by this fast? I’m not complaining though. After the winter we had in New England, I am more than ready to say buh-bye to the winter months.

With it being the end of March, it also means it’s time for SarahOhm.com’s Blogger Book Club March link up! And I’m really excited to share my book with you all this month!

March Book Club

March’s Theme

A biography of someone you’ve been meaning to learn more about

What I Read

Life in Motion by Misty Copeland

Synopsis (From Goodreads)

“Picture a ballerina in a tutu and toe shoes. What does she look like?”

As the only African American soloist dancing with the prestigious American Ballet Theatre, Misty Copeland has made history. But when she first placed her hands on the barre at an after-school community center, no one expected the undersized, anxious thirteen-year-old to become a ground-breaking ballerina.

When she discovered ballet, Misty was living in a shabby motel room, struggling with her five siblings for a place to sleep on the floor. A true prodigy, she was dancing en pointe within three months of taking her first dance class and performing professionally in just over a year: a feat unheard of for any classical dancer. But when Misty became caught between the control and comfort she found in the world of ballet and the harsh realities of her own life (culminating in a highly publicized custody battle), she had to choose to embrace both her identity and her dreams, and find the courage to be one of a kind.

With an insider’s unique point of view, Misty opens a window into the life of a professional ballerina who lives life center stage: from behind the scenes at her first auditions to her triumphant roles in some of the most iconic ballets. But in this beautifully written memoir, she also delves deeper to reveal the desire and drive that made her dreams reality.

Life in Motion is a story of passion and grace for anyone who has dared to dream of a different life.

Why I Chose This Book

I first learned about Misty Copeland through the Under Armour ads she recently did. I’m not a dancer, nor have I ever been one (unless you count those few dances I took when I was five). But I’ve always loved ballerinas. Perhaps it’s their exquisite grace, their gentle way of moving, and their ability to tell a story through movement. But when I heard of Misty Copeland, and how she decided to tell her story not only through dance, but through words, I couldn’t not choose this book.

My Thoughts

I enjoyed every moment of this book. How she became a ballerina, where she came from, her struggles, her triumphs, and everything in between. I don’t want to say too much without giving away much of the book, since it’s a biography, but it’s a great read. And talk about a role model. Not just for African-American women and girls, but for women and girls of all races. She had a dream, and a talent, and she pursued it.

Even if you’re not a dancer, check out this book. It will leave you inspired, and perhaps even googling videos of Misty Copeland’s ballets. I know I did.

Stars: 4 out of 5

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Stay tuned for next month’s book club pick, and make sure to check out all of my fellow book club member’s picks too!


#MicroblogMonday #11 – Las Vegas

Not sure what #MicroblogMondays is? Read the inaugural post which explains the idea and how you can participate too.


It’s been a couple of weeks since I wrote anything for #MicroblogMonday. Not for lack of wanting too, or lost interest, but purely because I’ve been busy prepping for vacation.

And as this post goes live, I’ll be on a plane. Perhaps by the time you read it, I’ll be in sunny Las Vegas.

#MicroblogMonday Vegas

Image purchased and designed via Canva

I always find that leading up to vacation, when I should be winding down, I’m usually the opposite. I’m running in a million different directions, trying to make sure everything is in it’s place before I go. I want order. Maybe it’s a touch of OCD?

But either way, as you read this, I’m waving to you from the sunny Las Vegas strip. Where we are indulging in some good drinks, some gambling, some R&R, and most importantly, wedding planning.

I’ll be posting throughout the week on Instagram, so make sure to follow there for live up to the minute updates.

And don’t worry – I have things scheduled to go live throughout the week. So it will be like I never left!

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Let’s Have Coffee and Chat {3/25/15}

Happy Hump Day my friends. It’s been nearly two weeks since I’ve posted. Sorry about that. Time gets ahead of sometimes. And unfortunately, the blog takes the hit.

Since it’s been a couple weeks, let’s catch up!

Lets Have Coffee

If we were having coffee, I would tell you…

WE LEAVE FOR VEGAS IN 4 DAYS.

I’m not excited or anything…. BUT IN 4 DAYS WE WILL BE LEAVING FOR VEGAS. Any questions? No, okay good. Because I’ll just keeping yelling about how we are leaving for Vegas. I can’t even wait for 90s and sun and the desert and cold drinks, and yeah. I just can’t wait. But don’t worry, the blog won’t be dark last week. I have a some posts already lined up and ready to go!

BlogHer is awesome.

I made a great connection though BlogHer with the Blogging and Social Media editor, who also runs the #MicroblogMonday linkups at Stirrup-Queens, and she’s been pushing my posts to the homepage at least twice a month. I even had my first syndicated/original post go live there last week. It’s been so incredible to see people actually enjoying what I write, and I feel very blessed to have something I’m passionate about. In fact, another post was pushed to the homepage today!

If you haven’t checked out Melissa’s blog, you should.

The gluten-free thing lasted about a day.

Then stress set in. And since I’m a stress-eater, I gave in to the carbs. Not like overload, but I ate them. Anyways, after our trip I’ll be back to focusing on the healthier side of my life. I won’t have a choice. It will be time to start trying on wedding dresses and planning a wedding!

We’re finally getting some spring-like weather.

Two weeks ago, it was nearly 60 degrees. Then it dropped back into the 20s and 30s, where we were stuck for like a week. We’re crawling back into the 40s today and 50s tomorrow. Followed by more 30s. But, it’s not snowing and it’s not below zero. So I’m considering this a win.

Butter pecan coffee is back at Dunkin’ Donuts.

I’m beyond obsessed with this flavor. They need to keep it year-round. It’s like drinking spring out of a cup. It’s probably awful for you, but I don’t even care. It’s delicious.

Have a wonderful day!

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Monthly Book Round-Up: February

Another month down, another book round-up. I think I like doing this much more than individual reviews! Sure, less blog content, but this isn’t a blog all about books. And if I wrote reviews for every single thing I read, we would have at least a couple reviews per week.

In February, I read 6 books. Still not a huge amount for me, but better than January. Let’s get right into it shall we.

Book Round Up February

Unsplash // James Tarbotton


Found in You – Laurelin Paige

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis (From GoodReads): Alayna Withers has only had one kind of relationship: the kind that makes her obsessive and stalker-crazy. Now that Hudson Pierce has let her into his heart, she’s determined to break down the remaining walls between them so they can build a foundation that’s based on more than just amazing sex. Except Hudson’s not the only one with secrets.

With their pasts pulling them into a web of unfounded mistrust, Alayna turns to the one person who knows Hudson the best—Celia, the woman he almost married. Hoping for insight from someone who understands all sides of the story, Alayna forms a bond with Celia that goes too far—revealing things about Hudson that could end their love for good.

This is the first relationship where Alayna hasn’t spiraled out of control. And she might lose Hudson anyway…

Verdict:  I first introduced this trilogy in my January Book Round-Up. And since I can’t put books down, no matter how much I don’t like it, I continued to read it. The second book continued to disappoint. I was bored. And I couldn’t wait to finish it, purely because it meant I could read the third one and be done with this series. Seriously, if you do decide to read this, I hope you find it more enjoyable than I did.


Forever with You – Laurelin Paige

Synopsis (From GoodReads): Alayna Withers relationship with Hudson Pierce has tested both her and his ability to trust. They decide that the only way they can move forward together is with open doors and transparency. It won’t be easy for the scarred lovers, but they’re committed to each other more now than ever. Alayna, in particular, has grown through their trials, and has emerged more confident and faithful to the man she loves.

But while the pair is focused on the future, their past shows up again to threaten their fragile bond. Promises that were made are broken, and Alayna learns that Hudson still has very potent secrets—secrets that will tear them both apart. As much as she feels for him, her ability to forgive and forget is tested beyond her limits.

Even though she found the only man who could fix her, a forever with Hudson seems more and more out of reach.

Verdict: The trilogy ended better than I thought it would. I didn’t mind this one and found it to be tolerable to read. Would I recommend this series based on the final book? No. I still don’t recommend it. But if you want to give it a chance, feel free.


Saddled – Susan Richards

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis (from GoodReads): One day, at the age of thirty-one, Susan Richards realized that she was an alcoholic. She wrote it down in her journal, struck by the fact that it had taken nine years of waking up hung-over to name her illness. What had changed?

Susan had a new horse, a spirited Morgan named Georgia, and, as she says: “It had something to do with Georgia. It had something to do with making a commitment as enormous as caring for a horse that might live as my companion for the next forty years. It had something to do with love.” Every day begins with a morning ride.

This is a memoir about the power of animals to carry us through the toughest times of our lives—about the importance of constancy, the beauty of quiet, steadfast love, the way loving a good (and sometimes bad!) animal can keep you going. It’s a wonderful story for Susan’s (and Georgia’s) fans, and for anyone who has ever loved an animal enough to keep on living.

Verdict:  Despite loving horses, I don’t read many horse-related books. However, when I saw this one, I knew I needed to read it. I know the healing power of a bond with a horse. I could relate to Susan. Not in terms of abuse and alcoholism, but with that unbreakable bond. I really enjoyed this book, and whether you’ve been around horses or not, you will too. It’s more about their relationship than about horses. And if you’re an animal lover, you’ll relate.


The Wedding Dress – Rachel Hauck

Synopsis (From GoodReads): Four brides. One Dress.

A tale of faith, redemption, and timeless love.

Charlotte owns a chic Birmingham bridal boutique. Dressing brides for their big day is her gift . . . and her passion. But with her own wedding day approaching, why can’t she find the perfect dress…or feel certain she should marry Tim?

Then Charlotte discovers a vintage dress in a battered trunk at an estate sale. It looks brand-new-shimmering with pearls and satin, hand-stitched and timeless in its design. But where did it come from? Who wore it? Who welded the lock shut and tucked the dog tags in that little sachet? Who left it in the basement for a ten-year-old girl? And what about the mysterious man in the purple vest who insists the dress had been “redeemed.”

Verdict: This was my book club pick for Sarah Ohm’s Blogger Book Club. You can read my review here.


Three Graves Full – Jamie Mason

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis (From GoodReads):

“There is very little peace for a man with a body buried in his backyard.”

But it could always be worse. . . .

More than a year ago, mild-mannered Jason Getty killed a man he wished he’d never met. Then he planted the problem a little too close to home. But just as he’s learning to live with the undeniable reality of what he’s done, police unearth two bodies on his property—neither of which is the one Jason buried.

Jason races to stay ahead of the consequences of his crime and while chaos reigns on his lawn, his sanity unravels, snagged on the agendas of a colorful cast of strangers. A jilted woman searches for her lost fiancé, a fringe-dweller runs from a past that’s quickly gaining on him, and a couple of earnest local detectives piece it together with the help of a volunteer police dog — all of them in the wake and shadow of a dead man who had it coming. As the action unfolds, each discovers that knowing more than one side of the story doesn’t necessarily rule out a deadly margin of error.

Jamie Mason’s irrepressible debut is a macabre, darkly humorous tale with the thoughtful beauty of a literary novel, the tense pacing of a thriller, and a clever twist of suspense.

Verdict: Meh. It wasn’t great, but it wasn’t awful. Parts of it were really good and grabbed me. Other parts were boring and I started to lose interest. The story itself was good. I liked the characters and their interactions. It’s a book I wouldn’t rave about, but wouldn’t tell you not to read it.


Where’d You Go, Bernadette? – Maria Semple

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis (from GoodReads): Bernadette Fox is notorious. To her Microsoft-guru husband, she’s a fearlessly opinionated partner; to fellow private-school mothers in Seattle, she’s a disgrace; to design mavens, she’s a revolutionary architect, and to 15-year-old Bee, she is a best friend and, simply, Mom.

Then Bernadette disappears. It began when Bee aced her report card and claimed her promised reward: a family trip to Antarctica. But Bernadette’s intensifying allergy to Seattle—and people in general—has made her so agoraphobic that a virtual assistant in India now runs her most basic errands. A trip to the end of the earth is problematic.

To find her mother, Bee compiles email messages, official documents, secret correspondence—creating a compulsively readable and touching novel about misplaced genius and a mother and daughter’s role in an absurd world.

Verdict: I really enjoyed this book. It was fun, quirky, but still had a really good story. It’s a different look at mental illness and how it can effect a person and a family. It was quick and easy read, and I was happy to end February with it.


Well, there you have it; the February Book Round Up! On to March, and spring!

(Disclaimer: This post contains Amazon affiliate links. By purchasing items via these links, I will earn a small commission. This does not affect the price you pay for said items.)

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#Microblog Monday #10: Spring Ahead

Not sure what #MicroblogMondays is? Read the inaugural post which explains the idea and how you can participate too.


It seems like Daylight Savings comes earlier and earlier every year. Wasn’t it always closer to the end of March/beginning of April?

Spring headUnsplash // Justin Leibow

This year, as everyone knows, it was this past weekend. And after the winter we’ve had, I’m definitely not complaining. Sure, losing an hour of sleep is hard. Especially for those who really love their sleep. Not too mention, it completely screws up my internal clock for a solid week.

But spring ahead always provides us with hope. That after such a horrible winter, we can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Spring is coming.

My favorite part of spring ahead? The longer days. Which I’m guessing is everyone’s favorite part. I love seeing the sun out until 7 at night. I love being able to leave the gym, and still have it bright out. I love knowing that once the snow melts, we can be outside well into the evening.

We made it through one hell of a winter. We made it to Daylight Savings. And now, we just wait as the temperatures begin to climb and we finally reach out beautiful New England spring.

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Insta-Life {February}

Instagram. We all know how much I love it (you can read the posts here and here). So it only seems proper to give an update on my Insta-Life.

Starting with February, since I just thought of it this week, once a month, I’ll share some of my favorite images from my instagram account.

Insta-Life February

I always say life is better in photos.

Enjoy!

#SuperbowlChamps2015.

A photo posted by Eryn Carter (@itseryne) on

Sick of the snow already, but it does make for some lovely pictures. #winter #snow A photo posted by Eryn Carter (@itseryne) on

This is my year. Morning #motivation.

A photo posted by Eryn Carter (@itseryne) on

Jesse the wonder horse enjoyIng some playtime before lessons. #hightailacres #horses #horsesofinstagram A photo posted by Eryn Carter (@itseryne) on

My Valentine’s Day flowers are blooming and look so beautiful. #love #flowers A photo posted by Eryn Carter (@itseryne) on

Doing a little local shopping. So in love with this little shop. #thenest #amesbury

A photo posted by Eryn Carter (@itseryne) on

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100 Days of Active, Round 2

If you’ve been following the blog for any length of time, then you’ll remember my failed attempt at 100 Days of Active last year. Last year, the idea was to be active everyday in the days leading up to my birthday.

Well, it didn’t happen. I tried. But not hard enough.

So, I’m bringing it back. For no other reason than to give me a good goal, and something to keep me moving.

100 days of active

I’ll be tracking it on here. But I’m not going to be doing it daily. I’ll check in once a week with my weekly activities, and weigh in.

Now you’re probably thinking “Is it 100 straight days?” and the answer is yes. The last time I tried this, I gave myself leeway to skip doing anything active on certain days. Which led to failure. Yes, my goal is something active everyday for 100 days.

30 minutes of activity every day for the next 100 days. Now, it doesn’t mean a hard workout every day. It could be something as simple as a lunchtime walk. But the idea is get me in the mindset of making time for exercise in a busy schedule.

This will run just about 14 weeks. I think it’s like 2 days over. So I’m planning out the first 8 weeks. Weigh in’s will be on Thursday, and the posts will be on Thursdays.

I like having a schedule. Otherwise, I can’t handle life.

The first 50-ish days of 100 Days of Active

Week 1: March 5 – March 11 (Yes. It starts tomorrow!)

Week 2: March 12 – March 18

Week 3: March 19 – March 25

Week 4: March 26 – April 1 – We leave for Las Vegas on March 30th. Essentially my 100 Days of Active for the days we are there, will be walking all over the strip. Seriously.

Week 5: April 2 – April 8 – We are back on April 4th from Las Vegas.

Week 6: April 9 – April 15

Week 7: April 16 – April 22

Week 8: April 23 – April 29

So for the first week or two, I anticipate being very cranky. More because I plan on trying to force myself out of bed in the morning to try to get a walk in on the treadmill when I can. And I really like sleep.

I hope you follow along. This will be a hard, but really good, challenge for me. I need it. I need to force myself to get active and doing something like this will remind me that it’s not about having time, it’s about making time.

I’ll be posting images throughout the challenge on instagram (follow me!) and will be using the hashtag #100daysofactive.

Wish me luck. Here we go!

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Let’s Have Coffee and Chat {3/3/15}

It’s been about 6 weeks since my last coffee date chat. I think we are well over due.

So grab your beverage of choice, settle in and let’s catch up!

Lets Have Coffee

If we were having coffee, I would tell you….

All about my blog and photography website re-do.

If you’ve been reading the blog, they you’ve noticed the new look. I finally found a design I loved, and that I felt was very me as well as customizable, so I went with it. I found it on Etsy and couldn’t be more thrilled with it. I have a few more little tweaks to do here and there, but nothing too major. I’m in the process of updating all the categories now.

As for my photography website, I’ve been trying to find something very me as well. What I love about my new design is that it already has my colors built into it, and it’s just fun. Plus it blends fairly well with the blog! I’d love to hear what you think of both in the comments!

We leave for Las Vegas in 27 days.

26 if you don’t count the actual day we leave. We can’t wait. I’m excited to begin the wedding planning adventure, but I’m also excited for vacation, and 80 degree weather. But between now and then, I have a lot of other things to get done (taxes, root canal, etc.) Las Vegas can’t come soon enough.

Spring needs to get here…now.

I think we can all agree here. It’s been cold for like 6 straight weeks. Like under 20 cold. We’ve had more than enough snow. It’s March. It’s time for consistent 40 degree weather. Tomorrow is supposed to be in the 40s, which will be a nice break, but then back to the cold.

I really want a treadclimber.

Is that random? Yes. It’s random. But I think they look fun. And if I think a piece of exercise equipment looks fun, then it’s probably worth buying. The only downfall? The price tag. I can’t justify spending $3,000 on a piece of equipment when I barely use my $20 a month gym membership. But a girl can dream.

I’m working towards going gluten-free.

I’ve known for a long time that I have a really hard time with food with gluten in it, some things more than others (beer being the biggest culprit). But with some trial and error, and realizing how awful I feel after eating it, I’ve realized that I need to try to harder to cut it out of my diet. I love bread. And pasta. And beer. And I know they have all of it gluten-free, but it’s just not the same. So I’m working towards cutting it out. I know I should just go cold-turkey, but I’m just cutting out the biggest culprits first, and then working from there. I really love this infographic from MindBodyGreen which I find helpful. Today is officially Day 1.

Any suggestions? I’d love to hear them. Boy is it hard. But I know my body, and my skin, will thank me later.

Daylight savings is this weekend.

And I can’t even wait for extra daylight when I leave work. Even when it’s still cold out, it makes everything seem so much better.

Have a great Tuesday!

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#MicroblogMonday #9 – March: In Like a Lion

Not sure what #MicroblogMondays is? Read the inaugural post which explains the idea and how you can participate too.


March. In like a lion, out like a lamb. I sure hope that’s true.

Mark - In Like a Lion

Unsplash // Carli Jean

Yesterday was the first day of March. After one hell of a February (can we say over 7 feet of snow and bitter cold?), seeing March 1 on the calendar was a welcome sight.

I waited for Sunday all week. That might sound silly, especially since it marks the end of the weekend. But it was supposed to be in the mid-thirties, and sunny. At least that’s what the weather apps and reporters were saying. They also were talking about more snow, but that was going to be overnight, not during the day.

What was supposed to be a sun-filled March day, turned into a gray, cold, this feels like January day. With snow flurries starting by mid-afternoon.

The last day of February felt more like an early spring day than the first day of March.

But like the quote above, March comes in like a lion and out like a lamb. I can only hope that this quote reigns true this year.

Because March definitely came in like a lion.

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