Tag Archives: marriage

world traveler.

It’s official. My passport is stamped and I’ve been yelled at by a customs agent. I can cross international travel off my bucket list.

Of course this is just the beginning. On the plane ride home from Mexico we were already talking about where to go next. Hopefully Switzerland with stops in France and Germany. Then, of course, Scotland, Ireland and England. The list goes on and on…

Mexico couldn’t have come at a better time for Rob and I. The first six months of marriage has been…interesting. You work so hard to plan a wedding, a honeymoon and then came the move to a new city and new jobs. You work so hard on everything else but your marriage and after six months, it starts to show. The mundane weekly routine of going to work, coming home, playing with the dog, making dinner, watching tv and going to bed takes its toll.

So, yes, there were fights. Stupid, stupid fights. The kind of fights you don’t tell your closest friends about because of course they will judge you and judge him (because even you are judging yourself for being upset about what it was.)

March 3 couldn’t have come fast enough for us. We went into the trip with the sense that this was so needed for us and we didn’t want to waste a moment.

The first three days were pretty uneventful, but that was the point. The cloudy skies and cooler temps (still in the mid 70s) made for the perfect lounge around weather. We ate great food and spent time at the poolside bar during happy hour. We took the shuttle into downtown Playa Del Carmen and walked around their “5th Avenue.”

Rob snapped this photo of me there without realizing I was supposed to pay the guy who owned the monkey for him to take the picture…whoops!

We walked along the beach and stopped at a tiki hut and drank a couple beers. It was everything I wanted for the week: to do nothing.

Wednesday the week picked up with a trip to Tulum, just outside Playa. The Mayan Ruins there are still being excavated and it’s adjacent to one of the most gorgeous beaches I’ve seen. That day it was too windy to walk down to the water, but the view was amazing.


Thursday, we traveled two hours to the city of Chichen Itza, home to a Mayan temple that is considered to be one of the Seven Wonders of the W0rld. But first, we bathed in a sink hole that Mayans used to cleanse themselves before entering the holy city more than 3,000 years ago.

The main temple was an incredible sight and both Rob and I felt a gravitational pull towards the structure. Pictures can’t do it justice, it’s truly breathtaking.

On Friday temps reached over 95 degrees and Rob and I were like two little lobsters by the end of the day. Instead of having one last nice dinner out we ordered pizza and watched a horrible movie on HBO. The week ended better than I could have planned, hanging out with my best friend, eating pizza and drinking a couple coronas.

Nothing is ever perfect, but that week we came pretty close.

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The Resolutions Post

Like most things in life, I’m late at this whole resolutions post. Nineteen days late to be exact.

 After a whirlwind of Christmas it was New Years.

Normally my favorite holiday of the whole entire year, this one felt remarkably, meh. (That description can only come from someone who graduated with a journalism degree.)

Yes, it was our first one as a married couple, yes it was our first one together as a married couple living in Milwaukee. Maybe there’s just been so much change in 2011 that secretly I was like, “Really? It’s only been one year? It’s felt like five…oh yeah, and I’m not getting any younger. And that whole ’30 sounds terrifying’ conversation that was funny at 22 is not so damn funny anymore. Because in one month I’ll be 27 and in three years I’ll be 30.”

But thanks to a visit from Rob’s sister, Laura, the night that I wasn’t all that pumped to have actually turned out to be really fun. Fast forward to a week-long work trip and I’m just now getting caught up with phone calls to friends, family and this very neglected blog.

So, without anymore delay, here is what I hope to improve on myself in 2012:

Cook, Bake Healthier Meals.

Thanks to Pinterest, I have an unlimited resource to seek out healthy recipes. Some of my favorite healthy habits so far are swapping white rice for Quinoa and using black beans as a substitute for flour in baked treats. I love to cook and I plan to share all my successes and failures in the kitchen right here.

Get Fit.

Just do it. ‘Nuff said.

Be A Better Wife.

You know, roll my eyes less, listen more, don’t be so quick to anger, compliment more, love harder. The easy stuff. Sigh. Marriage is hard. Anyone who said it isn’t is a liar but that doesn’t mean it isn’t amazing at the same time. I think with the wedding, move and new jobs behind us, Rob and I have a slightly less stressful environment so we are committing ourselves to be a kinder, gentler version of Erin and Rob. 

International Travel.

This has been on my list forever and finally this year it’s going to get checked off when we arrive in Mexico March 3. Can’t wait to write that post.

Read More Books.

2011 ended with the Hunger Games trilogy and 2012 has started with “Devil In The White City.” Not so much uplifting reads but really good. Thanks to my Kindle from my husband for Christmas, I think this one is going to stick.

Write The Beginning Of A Novel

How cliche, right? But I kind-of-sort-of have an idea. No, I will not tell you what it is. Someday, hopefully, you’ll be able to read about it though. Plus, I have the best writer I know helping me out – Rob.

Join A Club.

Cooking club, book club, young professionals club? Yes, please!

Work My Business

Most know by now that I’m a Mary Kay consultant. The last half of 2011 I had to put it on the farthest back back-burner of my life and I’m hoping in the spring I can devote more time to helping women look and feel fabulous.




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a christmas story

On Christmas morning, year after year, my mom lined up my brother, sister and I – in order of oldest to youngest – on the stairs. We were strategically positioned on the final three steps before the wall met the banister, so we were just out of view of the tree and the endless mound of presents we imagined were waiting for us.

Years later, my sister and I confessed that more often than not we knew what hid beneath the papered patterns of snowmen and ornaments much earlier than our mom thought. We mastered the art of unwrapping gifts using a safety pin to slice open the scotch-taped end – as well as acting surprised. Parents: Your bedroom closet is never a good hiding place.

Despite the Rockwellian image you conjure up at the thought of three children in pajamas waiting in anticipation at the top of the steps to see just what Santa had in store for them, Christmas wasn’t always perfect. One year it was necessary to use fishing wire to keep our tree from falling over. We tied one end to the top of the tree and the other through a hook drilled into the ceiling originally intended for a hanging planter.

My mom didn’t hang stockings with care, but I’m pretty sure she dropped a few f-bombs when she thought about how she was going to pay for three children’s Christmas presents on a Catholic school teacher’s salary. I was always missing someone that morning – mom or dad, whose ever turn it wasn’t.

This being my first Christmas as a married woman I expected it to feel different than others in recent years. Maybe I would if there was a single spec of snow on the ground – seriously Mother Nature, WTF?

That’s where Rob comes in. He’s been playing the Glee Christmas CD on repeat since Oct. 31 and I can’t even count the times Michael Buble’s version of “I’m Dreaming Of A White Christmas” has played through his headphones. It’s got to be at least 50…

He’s tried so hard, too. Our one-bedroom apartment isn’t exactly the place for superfluous decorations, but without any prompting I came home from a long night at work in early December to find our kitchen cabinets outlined in colored lights. A piece of artwork in the dining room was swapped out for an advent calendar. We slow-danced to “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” in our livingroom.

For him and his family it’s all about tradition this time of year. The family always travels to Naperville on Christmas Eve where his aunt and uncle host a smorgasbord. There’s a fish course, a meat course and a dessert course and don’t even try to use the same plate for two of the same courses – it’s a punishable offense.

After dinner there’s a Christmas program where everyone sings a selection of “Twelve Days Of Christmas,” “Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer” or “Jingle Bells.” Christmas morning the family goes to church and brunch is held back at grandma’s.

I guess I’m still getting used to the fact that what’s his family is now our family. His traditions are now our traditions. When I really think about it, I’m glad that our kids will have a routine around the holidays. One that will most definitely include a picture on the stairs.

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plotting out our lives at applebee’s

The last thing I wanted to do tonight when I got home was leave again. Work has been mentally and physically exhausting and oh yeah I haven’t worked out in forrrrreverr.

But Christmas with the in-laws is Sunday and so that means I need to actually start my Christmas shopping. So when Rob asked me if I wanted to make a trip to Best Buy to pick up a few cds I wanted to cry but I kept my black peacoat on and out the door we went.

“You’re driving,” I said to Rob, which in our marriage is code for “this is all your fault you’re making me do something I don’t want to do.”

“We’ll pick up fast food on the way,” he said.

Yes, I can be bribed with fast food. I would give anything to just have a McChicken in hand and not have to touch the dishes in the sink and actually cook something.

While Wauwatosa differs from Oshkosh greatly in many, many, many ways, one way Oshkosh scores points is the amount of readily available fast food places in all parts of the city.

Needless to say after our trip to Best Buy (where we also scored “Elf” on Blu-Ray) we failed to find a fast food place that was within a justifiable distance to travel to eat a breaded piece of “chicken” loaded with mayo.

At this point my hanger – hunger induced anger – was reaching detrimental levels and I can no longer be held accountable for giving the look of death or anything that comes out of my mouth.

Rob knew we were reaching emergency levels and decided to pull into Applebees. I won’t even mention what I said when he didn’t even think to order me an appetizer – couple that with both of our complete inability to order off a menu (why must restaurants offer so many choices?!) and it was not a very pleasant conversation.

Our server, Sam, arrived with buffalo wings and my hanger passed as quickly as it came and my ability to be a human being emerged.

On our way out the door before Best Buy I grabbed a reporter’s notebook. A couple nights before we had written down our Christmas lists along with our family members and I was going to review it at dinner. But a conversation about warm-weather trips at work today made me flip to a new page and start an entirely different list.

It’s no secret after you get married the most frequently asked question you hear is, “When are you going to start having kids?” Ugh. To be honest, I was very baby crazy before we got Dexter…

Oh, Dexter. Thank you so much for making me realize how out of my mind I would be to have a child right now. I love him, but he’s enough – for the next five years.

At least that’s what we decided at Applebee’s tonight. Our biggest priority: Get out of debt.

Which, by the way, sparked an interesting conversation about a new program that I want to head called, “Adopt A Young Family In Debt” program. Anyone with a net worth of $10 million or more donates $100,000 to a young family with student loan debt to be used solely to get out of debt and in turn be able to pump more money into the economy. Think about it! I’m on to something…

But after getting out debt our biggest priority is traveling. Rob and I have the same political views, core religious beliefs and values despite the fact that we grew up radically different. Rob’s family emphasized travel and seeing the world and I….went to Chicago? I love my family in Chicago but I’ve never traveled overseas. It’s something I want to.do.so.bad.

I know getting out of debt and traveling the world are two very opposite goals but I think we have a good plan in place.

While eating a spinach and shrimp salad I started to dream. Ireland. Mexico. Switzerland. Britain. Scotland. Australia. Egypt.

Our sisters live in Washington D.C. so we also want to do a mega New-England tour hitting Boston, New York City and D.C.

Ultimately, Australia and Egypt didn’t make the final list but I think the rest are doable. Then, our plan is to go back to San Fran on our five-year anniversary.

So, sorry world. NO little Eberts until 2016-ish. Besides, I don’t think our marriage would survive pregnancy hanger. Poor, Rob.

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