Category Archives: Inspiration

Mr. Kelly and I circa 1990

The Important Places

13th May 2015

It’s a joke in our family that my grandpa was part gypsy. Never one to stay in one city, one job or stick to one story in a single sitting, Edward Kelly was a man of adventure and of narration. Through his seven children and too many to count grandchildren and great-grandchildren, he most certainly passed along a mix of wonder and disregard for contentment. However, it wasn’t until recently that I had a moment of reflection for his disposition in my own life.

Mr. Kelly and I circa 1990

Mr. Kelly and I circa 1990

For weeks now, I have been on the hunt for the perfect destination for a trip for P and I to take later this year. To call it a case of wanderlust would be a vast understatement. It’s almost as if I’ve convinced myself that the countries of the world will slowly disappear if we don’t choose the correct ones, all in the right order.

P has reminded how silly this sounds on multiple counts and as per usual, I’ve fought it. As if right on cue this week, that gypsy of mine stepped in. Mr. Kelly sent me a series of these moments that my uncle-in-law would call God moments. A single moment where time drags its feet to a halt, clarity rushes inward and you know without a doubt someone is screaming for you to pay close attention, right at this very moment.

Whether it was truly my Grandpa or my brain finally coming to terms with the “calm yourself down” notion, I can’t be sure, but let’s just say I’m a sap for these types of moments when they happen, and I believe that they truly do.

Cue the God moment.

Kelly moment. Moment of clarity. Whatever you feel like calling them for your own personal well being.

This past Thursday night, my brother arrived in town. For those who don’t know, he’s away in Chapel Hill, NC being a super smart astrophysicist. For realsies. I work to discover things on the Internet and he works to discover new solar systems. An even sibling playing field, but I digress. What this boils down to is that we no longer see each other as often as I’d like.

Erik and I likely searching for dinosaur bones

Erik and I likely searching for dinosaur bones, or pre-historic shark teeth

Thursday night, Erik gets to town. P and I fight Atlanta traffic for what seemed like hours to get to my parents’ house for dinner. As we are sitting around the table (four siblings, two parents, one new husband), likely arguing about why Amanda didn’t make her desert sooner and now it’s melting, I noticed a look exchanged between my parents.

A look that took the lust right out of wanderlust, exchanged the a for an o and focused right in on the wonder part.

It was in that quick glance between two people that I understood. The most important places, trips and adventures in the world pale in comparison to the company we keep. That one hit me loud and clear. It was in that moment that I realized, for my parents there was no greater adventure than watching a rare adventure around a dinner table unfold.

These are the important places, because as it turns out, gypsies are more than just nomads. They are a community, a tribe and a connection that forces us to forget that adventure isn’t so much of a place, an action or even a destination.

Adventure is a state of being.

A state of joy, of content, of challenge and of support. An adventure that if we’re lucky enough, we’ll seek out every single day. I needed that reminder this week. Thanks Mr. Kelly.



PS, if you haven’t seen it, please take a moment to watch the short film, The Important Places. It was the icing on the cake and the push I needed to get these thoughts on to digital paper this week.


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Get it Girl

5th May 2015

Maybe it started with the Spice Girls, it definitely at least feels like it started with the Spice Girls. Nearly eighteen years ago this summer, Wannabee hit the US airwaves and girl power as we know it (or at least as nine-year-old me knew it) changed forever.

Fast forward to 2015 and we’ve encountered a whole new era of girl power. An era where two women have announced their intent to run for president, where George Clooney’s wife isn’t best known for her looks and where I can lift a bike over my head and get it on the bike rack without a boys help.

I realize one of those doesn’t fit with the others, but for this 5’2″ girl, an accomplishment it most certainly is, even if I’ll have bruises to show for weeks as a result of the multiple attempts it took…


Beyond politics and Hollywood, the tide of women in sports is also in a period of change, and I couldn’t be more proud to watch it unfold. From Arc’teryx #DefineFEMININE, to Ram Trucks “The Courage is Already Inside” and Nike Women’s #betterforit (which I had the upmost privilege of working on earlier this year), brands are setting a new standard for what it means to be a women in sport.

But inspiration doesn’t always come from personal bests or even the chills of YouTube. This weekend, I had the pleasure of joining Red Bull for the Wings for Life World Run, a road race held across the globe simultaneously in 35 countries where 100% of the proceeds benefit the Wings for Life foundation in search of a cure to spinal cord injuries.

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The premise of the race itself is quite different than your typical race format. Runners start at the same time, but continue until they are caught by a catcher car that takes off thirty minutes after the runners begin. There is quite literally no finish line.

I myself have been a participant in countless races, but as I’ve rarely spent time on the sidelines, it was fascinating to listen stories from the finishers area and watch as hundreds of people crowded around to cheer on the final runners. The leading female runner in Sunrise, Florida was caught just past 32 miles. Thirty-two-freaking-miles, but even watching that unfold wasn’t the best part.


Volunteering at the event with the Red Bull team, I listened to countless stories of men and women sharing race records unheard of … to themselves. From I’ve never run further than a 5K in my entire life and I ran seven miles today, to my goal was six and I hung in there for twelve, it was quite incredible to see what someone is capable of without their even knowing it.

So get out there. Go for it. Try something new. And if you wind up with a a few bumps a bruises, (even if they are from trying to lift something twice your size over your head) hey, that’s an accomplishment too.




Wherever You Are, Be All There

13th March 2014

Confession: it’s been quite some time since I’ve been back on the blogging train. I have quite a few things to catch up on over here, as even though the stories have been told, they have yet to be written. From an engagement to buying a new car (not by choice), planning a wedding and welcoming a new kitten into the family…we’ve had quite the busy end of 2013/beginning of 2014.

In the mantra of starting fresh, I felt it was best to dive back in through Lent. The Lenten season has always held a special place in my heart, not only does it bring with it the return of Peeps, but with it also a sense of community and renewal – in both the spiritual and physical definitions.

Each year, I try my best to give up at least one thing I could do without for forty days and add one thing that I could use more of beyond that. As I’ve had some pretty big life changes in the last six months (i.e. saying goodbye to living with one of my best friends and moving in with a boy) it feels like a more appropriate time than ever to adopt a phrase I’ve grown to love over the last year or so.


I’m not quite sure where I first heard that one, but it’s stuck in my mind for quite some time. I’m definitely guilty of Pinteresting while watching a movie, answering emails while in a meeting or scrolling through an Instagram feed while waiting on the elevator. While some of those distractions also double as enjoyment (who doesn’t love a great wedding Pinterest board) they can also very easily take away from the most precious moments of our days.

Living with a significant other, I’ve certainly become much more aware of my habits – one of those being making sure the time we get to spend together on the week nights is as meaningful as possible. With packed personal schedules, even sitting at a quiet dinner table or watching Modern Family together sans distraction is the “be all there” moment that I can put within reach.

The little moments can quickly become big moments, if only we take the time to pause and enjoy them. With little reminders each day, I hope this is a Lenten practice that will carry on far beyond the last marshmallow Peep.