Hey Traveleatlove readers! Mucho thanks goes out to Meghan for letting me do a guest post while she is at FoodBuzz this weekend. My name is Erin and I write/blog over at Big Girl Eats! I’m relatively new to the blog world after starting my own blog in July ’09. I was inspired to chart my own course after reading through the journeys of some of the bigger bloggers out there. I wanted a way to hold myself accountable to the changes I was eager to make in my life. Plus, I love cooking, baking, and eating! Thus, Big Girl Eats was born!
It was a little nerve racking to start the blog. While I don’t consider myself a super private person, I wondered what would happen if I put my life, my goals, and my thoughts out into the internet-osphere (yup, totally made that one up). I was worried I would feel like a failure if I didn’t measure up to the idea that I had in my head of what a blog “should” look like. And who would want to read my rambling stories about things like batch cooking and The Babysitters Club? (I thrive on randomness, really.) After four months of blogging, I feel like I’m finally getting into my groove. The blog world is nothing if not supportive, encouraging, and FUN! I never would have discovered something I really enjoy doing if I didn’t decide to take a risk. Taking risks is hard. If you’re like me, you talk yourself out taking the risk a million times over. You make pros and cons (holler if you’re a list maker!). You call your mom. You debate with friends. You get mad at yourself for not being able to just make the damn decision already! One of the best experiences of this past year, and perhaps my life, was a big risk. I was scheduled to go on a three-part vacation in June, with one part being three days in San Francisco with my roommate. She is a jewelry designer and was having a show in SF the same time I would be in California visiting friends. I decided to join her in the city before leaving for Colorado. (That’s Newport Beach, CA to SF, CA to Colorado. Told you I love randomness.) I booked my plane tickets months in advance and waited for the Roomie to confirm the show. Turns out people aren’t super interested in buying jewelry during a recession – and the show was cancelled, leaving me with three days in SF – solo! I debated cancelling that part of the trip. I tried to figure out if I could get a refund, how much I would lose, etc. I thought about how it would be scary traveling around a new city, on the complete other side of the country, by myself. “How would I get around? What if something happened? And, and, people will think I am a total loser for eating dinner alone! GASP!!” Then, I thought back to when I was 16 years old and went to Germany as an exchange student. I thought back to when I graduated from college and moved to Delaware from Connecticut, not knowing a single person, place or thing. I thought about moving to Rhode Island, and my life now. I thought about my current realization that I want to go back to school. All of these involved some element of fear, anxiety, and the unknown. And all of them turned out to be some of the best experiences of my life, things that have shaped who I am today and what I value. I booked myself a hotel in SF for three nights the day after the Roomie told me about the cancelled show. There’s no way I could let fear and anxiety stop me from visiting a city I’ve always wanted to go to. And as with all of the other decisions that turned out to be right for me, I’m SO glad I listened to my gut. That’s what I remind myself whenever I have to make a tough decision, especially one involving risk, anxiety, fear, or the unknown. I think about the amazing blue skies as I rode around in the top of an SF tour bus.
I think about the family I met while stopping to try the first Irish Whiskey bar in America.
I think about the amazing food I ate.
I think about the time I spent, walking around the city, riding on the trolleys, soaking it all in and being proud that I was out there. I was living.
I am SO glad I listened to my gut.
It doesn’t have to be traveling to another city, or changing jobs, or huge life decisions. It can be little risks, little ways to improve your life – however you want to! – every day. The quote below reminds me to act like the Big Girl that I strive to be.
A ship in harbor is safe. But that is not what ships are for. -John A. Shedd, Salt from My Attic I hope you enjoyed a little glimpse of San Francisco and that you’ll take a risk this week. Thanks Meghan!
Thank YOU Erin for sharing this trip with us! I love the photos. Once I went to Nice, France by myself for a weekend after a conference in London. I didn’t have a very good time. . . but that’s for another post! I was still glad I took the risk!