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Fahrenheit. A great night in Uptown Charlotte.

estes park me

I’m a jack of all trades and a master of none. I love to (in no particular order): cook for my family and friends, drink and learn about wine, trail run in the mornings, read everything I can get my hands on, ride my bike, listen to music, hike, travel, mix cocktails, wake up early, learn languages, practice yoga both on and off the mat, laugh with my kids, go to movies, dance, snowshoe, follow professional cycling and attend races in person whenever possible, dress up in costumes, stay in bed & breakfasts, sit in awe of the mountains, smell the air of a mountain forest, decorate my home, do improvement projects and clean. I’ve made it a goal to try something new every year. So far, in 2014, I learned to ski and I got a tattoo. I also went to the Central American jungle for the first time. I hiked to a waterfall, saw sloths in the wild and practiced yoga with the Caribbean Sea as my view. I practice being grateful daily, even when I don’t understand why things happen. I believe that mornings are a magical time and a moving mediation of quiet and solitude when the day is full of possibilities. My dream is to own my own bed & breakfast. I have it all planned and decorated in my mind.

I wrote this a while ago and didn’t include gardening! I love my garden. 2014 was my first attempt at gardening. I had about half of what I planted grow and produce. This year, I quadrupled my space and got serious about it. I planted about a dozen different vegetables and herbs. So far, so good! Everything is growing nicely. I’ll post pictures when I have produce.

Book recommendations: I am Malala, The Glass Castle, The Book Thief, Reinventing the Body/Resurrecting the Soul, Wild, On Writing, Thick Face Black Heart, Water for Elephants, Night, The Road, and Attached. These aren’t new (mostly) but they’re all books with captivating characters, lessons learned and guts wrenched. I could read them all time and time again.

From time to time, I add on to this little bio. Today, I make the addition of two books: Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert and Life in a Jar by Jack Mayer.

I also am adding a new thing I did in 2015: Stand up Paddleboarding. I had a lot of new experiences in 2015 due to my cancer treatment. I won’t call them out individually because that’s nearly impossible for me to do. It’s been one big experience for me. I learned so much and I can’t imagine learning so many lessons again in such a short period.

In December of 2016, I am adding a few new things I did this year. First, I moved across country. It was a big move for us and we were sad to leave Colorado. But I’m getting my bearings. When we first moved, so many people asked how I liked Charlotte. That’s nearly impossible to answer so early in the process. It took me years to fall in love with Denver and meet my amazing friends. So, what I can say about Charlotte is that I like it enough to stick around and see what develops — sort of like a new boyfriend. There’s a good base to start with. We’ll see if he turns out to be diamond or a dud.

Secondly, I visited Croatia and Germany for the first time. We had a 16-day trip in July that left me drained and full at once. Croatia is a beautiful place with so much to do and so much to see. We exhausted ourselves filling our days with new experiences. I was in Germany only overnight. But I did get to see a bit of Munich. I’ll be going back to both places.

While I was in Croatia I made the decision to return to school to learn the German language. Upon my return stateside, I applied to UNC Charlotte and will begin my degree in Fall of 2017. For now, I’m studying with Language Academy of the Carolinas. Once my degree program is well underway, I’ll be living in Germany for some amount of time, maybe an entire semester, to hone my language skills. I’d love to find a way to swing living there on a permanent basis. My curiosity about how this process will play out is aroused and I’m primed to begin.

I have a big milestone this month. On December 17th, I will celebrate one year of being cancer free. On this date last year, I received my final chemo treatment. Life continues to be an amazing adventure. The goodness and light in me honors the goodness and light in you. Namaste.

6 thoughts on “About me

  1. You forgot to mention that you are a grouch when you are awakened. I don’t know where that quirk comes from, so I’ll blame it on your Mother, cause she don’t have very many faults

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    1. I didn’t forget. It’s a quirk that I no longer possess. I have become a morning person and actually quite enjoy awakening early to enjoy the quiet and stillness of morning.

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  2. Erika, I discovered your blog about a month ago and have now finished reading all your entries. Amazing and what a sense of empowerment you are providing to other women also dealing with this. I did not realize you had cancer until I stumbled upon your blog. I am so sorry that you had to go through this journey but I’m so impressed with your handling of it. Wow just Wow!

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    1. Thank you, Susan, for your compliments, your praise and for reading my blog! it hasn’t been an easy road, but I’ve had amazing support and encouragement, like yours, that make it better. Thank you.

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