Cheers to the Chapters of Your Life

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Hi, I'm Erin!

I am a photographer passionate about the outdoors, meaningful travel, creativity and intention in all things. I hope to use my platform online to show the beauty and complexity of the world we live in, and to encourage genuine connection to the world and all the magic within it.

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Two and a half years ago, I moved to Colorado in search of a new chapter.

Before the move, I worked as an adventure trip leader. It was how I traveled– I’d pick a place I wanted to go to, find a job there and book a ticket. The job was complicated and dynamic, but after a while, my life felt relatively simple. I’d get a job that lasted a few months, travel in between, then get another job, then travel.

Temporary houses, airports, living out of a backpack.

It was an amazing way to see the world and those years are invaluable. But I got tired. I was ready to put roots down. I was looking for home. I was looking for friends, for community, for routine, for consistency, for a new story to write.

I had a full-time job offer in Colorado, and it seemed like the next step– like a safe place for me to build a foundation. And that’s what I did, just not in the way I thought I would. I thought I’d move out here and start my job. I thought I’d find a group of friends who liked what I liked. I thought I would get into some hobbies on the weekends. I thought that was what putting roots down would be like.


There was the plan, and then there was the amazing, blessing-in-disguise, wonderful and massive wrench thrown into the plan. The wrench was getting let go from my new but-it’s-the-reason-I-moved-here job. And thank goodness. It was the first unknown of many. It was my permission slip to backflip off the diving board into the deep end of something I knew nothing about.

I said yes.

I said yes to sunrise, to parties, to internships, to things I thought I was too old to try and things I wrote myself off from– things I felt disqualified from. I said yes to hard work, to wine, to friendships I felt were unlikely– some of them the most important and honest friendships I’ve had.

An example of Yes: Rebecca and I and a Kenwood Sonoma County Pinot Noir in Nederland, CO.

I wasn’t home all the time– I wasn’t home, because I was on a plane or driving 6 hours to the desert. I wasn’t home all the time because I was going somewhere with the people I met here. Because we decided Tuesday was the perfect day for a picnic. Because we were on the road to somewhere or nowhere, and none of it was according to my plan.

I wasn’t looking for an adventure when I moved to Colorado. I was looking for stability and I found adventure anyway. I learned that it just takes many forms. I now know that I don’t need a permission slip to take risks. I learned that I can’t outplan the lessons life has for me. I couldn’t have planned this– the friendships, the jobs I found and then quit, the communities I have been a part of, the ways I learned to engage, the travel schedule to keep up with, the love in so much of it. And I wouldn’t want to try to plan any of that. I would do a really bad job at it anyway.

For a long time, I was the person who knew how things were “supposed” to work out. But I couldn’t have predicted or planned how these years have unfolded. I never could have imagined the moments they were made of.

Adventure comes in many forms. Be open for it when it comes to you. You can try to plan as much as you want, but life is richer and better than your plan. And you will discover yourself over and over again along the way.

So cheers to you. Cheers to these chapters. The ones that form you, that challenge you, that ask you why you’re here and make you better.

Thank you to Kenwood Vineyards for sponsoring this post. Kenwood’s spirit is defined by avid curiosity, a love for the land and above all else, a belief that there’s always something more to discover. Passion for adventure and the thrill of discovery is at the core of Kenwood’s wild experience. Some favorites:

  • 2014 Sonoma County River Valley Pinot Noir raspberry, cherry and red currant aromas, with spice notes of nutmeg and vanilla for a smooth and elegant finish.
  • 2013 Sonoma County Cabernet Sauvignon – blackberry, plum and cherry flavors, joined with notes of nutmeg and star anise.
  • 2015 Sonoma County Sauvignon Blanc – aromas of passion fruit, lychee and white peach, with subtle notes of lemongrass and fresh ginger root. The intense bouquet is complemented by zesty citrus and tropical flavors that give way to a crisp and refreshing finish.

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  1. Shalon Smith says:

    I really liked this. I moved to Colorado for similar reason and it hasn’t played out. Glad you found unexpected opportunities. I’m looking but haven’t been too successful.

  2. Amanda Porcelli says:

    Hi Erin, I recently heard you on She-Explores and am glad I did. I have been looking around on your blog and Instagram, thanks for the inspiration! I was wondering if you have any advice or websites to check out for beginner hikers. I am 29 years old, just got my associates degree and have been planning on getting my bachelors… but after thinking long and hard about it I have decided not to go back to school and to try and focus on myself and my happiness. I am from Cleveland OH and have never really been hiking before, other than a few hours on trails, but I would love to kick it into high gear and try a three day weekend. Maybe 10-15 miles total? Do you think this is too ambitious? I also have no clue where to go. Any advice would be wonderful, thank you again 🙂

    • Hi Amanda! Thanks for stopping by. That’s so awesome! I would look into seeing if there is an REI near you and if you can get in on any classes they offer. She Explores has lots of awesome women for you to follow, but one that comes to mind is Heather Rochfordt– Hope that helps to get you started 🙂 10-15 miles in 3 days sounds like a good starter amount, but it totally depends where you are going, elevation, weather, etc–– BUT if you have an REI near you, they can help with that! xo

  3. jina says:

    I love to escape from the crowd to a new place in my camper-van as you also did… and I just like your blog because you always share a good post with us. I’m living in my van for 3 years and enjoyed the whole time, and after seeing peoples like you who are sharing their amazing memories with us planning to start my own blog soon… you are really amazing…

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