Photos of Sandy

Hi Readers!

a crew i worked with doing ripouts and demo on homes

I’m back in Western New York now.  And while I have so many stories to tell about what I’ve seen and experienced down state in the hardhit areas of Hurricane-Superstorm Sandy – I’m also super busy with work and real life.   I know I’ll carve out some time to publish some well-worded stories about my time there.  And I’d also love to report on the everyday heroics I witnessed, the amazing people I met, and I want to express to others around the nation and world just how serious the situation is there.

It’s BAD.

So much work is yet to be done.  So much help is still greatly needed.

taking a quick break one day in staten island


push it real good – going uphill with a cart full of supplies to be delivered to homes


I’m going to run for now.  But should you be interested in checking out my photos from Staten Island and Long Beach, I’ll post the links to the public albums.

Staten Island Facebook Album

Long Beach Facebook Album

Thanks for reading – and please keep the folks of NY and NJ in your hearts and prayers.  They need all the love and assistance we can muster.



Happy Victoria Day!

Today is Victoria Day in Canada!

I work for ICUC, a Canadian company – and lots of my co-workers are Canadian as well.  And now that I live so super close to Canada (I’m in Western NY, near Niagra), I feel like I’m just surrounded with all things Canadian.

And, I love it!


I love our neighbors to the north, my wonderful co-workers, Tim Horton’s, Labatts, Molson, maple syrup, hockey (both Duggs and my cousin Nick LOVE hockey – they both play, we watch it all the time, I’m getting pretty into the whole hockey thing)…

i know that it was just yesterday that i professed my love for dunkin donuts, but i’m learning to love love love tim horton’s too – in fact, duggs just walked in the door with some fresh tim horton’s! woo hoo!

duggs is a huge nj devils fan

nicky likes the red wings, but since they’re out already – he wants the kings to take it this year. boo!

Seriously though, stereotypes aside, I have enjoyed getting to know more Canadians through work and learning more about Canada.  I love the people I work with, their spirit, and I envy aspects of their way of life up there – the way their system is designed to take care of their citizens (and I’m not trying to start a debate here, I LOVE America and being American as well, there are just certain things about the Canadian quality of life that I wish we could emulate here; I’m sure there are Canadians who feel that way about us, and there are things about the American way of life they’d like to have goin’ on).

Funnily enough, as I was drafting this here blog post Duggs just walked home with Tim Hortons AND a case of Labatts! Awesome timing.

our kitchen counter right now

So I guess we’re having a mini Victoria Day celebration over here, enjoying some Canadian goods.   I live for a good cruller and honestly the Tim Horton’s cruller beats out the ole Dunkin Donuts equivalent.  It’s softer in the middle and sweeter on the outside, all good qualities if you ask me!

so stoked for this here cruller, and un-doing all the hard work of running and working out i’ve been putting in lately. doh!

what’s that? my nails look pretty? thanks! i just did them about an hour ago. i think they look really great (for once).

As part of my job with ICUC, I write for our company blog,, and today in honor of Victoria Day, I wrote about another Canadian company that’s recently made the news for gaining speed, users, recognition and success: HootSuite.  (Here’s the article I wrote on HootSuite for work).

the hootsuite owl

If you don’t use HootSuite yet, you need to get on that.  It’s amazing, it’s my favorite way to organize all of my social media outlets – I use my account to keep both my personal and work stuff organized, to schedule posts and the analytics are pretty sweet too.

a screenshot of hootsuite, different tabs for all your different pages – it’s so easy to use, and a great way to stay organized.

Okay.  That’s enough time spent in tangent city – sorry, you know me… I get all excited and one topic reminds me of another, and next thing you know I’m prattling on about the most random of things.

Victoria Day.  That’s what this post is about!

Originally celebrated to mark the birthday of Queen Victoria, the holiday now is considered to make the start of summer.  A day off of work for many, parades in some towns, even fireworks, and a lot of excitement that the long Canadian winter is “officially” done and warmer, lighter days are here – is what I’ve come to understand about this holiday.  (According to my very diligent online research and chatting w/ my co-workers).

My boss has been camping with her girlfriends all weekend.  Not only am I so jealous (I haven’t been camping in so long, I’m dying to go!), I’m really happy for her to get some relaxing time away from gadgets, emails, social media and the stressors of our modern lives.  There are few people I know who work harder than my boss, and she really deserves this time to kick back and have fun!

So – to all who have been celebrating today, I hope you had a great time, had fun, got to celebrate with family and/or friends, or just did something nice to make the best of your day off.

Happy Victoria Day! 

I’ll be back tomorrow with a post on some eco-friendly household practices- the ways of hippie living that I’ve been able to maintain during our move (if you read yesterday’s post about how much of an eco-slacker I’ve been lately, you’ll know what I’m talking about.  I’ve fallen off the green wagon a bit, but it hasn’t been all bad and I have a few nice-to-our-planent habits that I haven’t totally ignored).

As for now – I’m off to go eat some more donuts and remotely soak up as much of Victoria Day as I can.  Of course, ALL opinions expressed here are my own – even though I work for ICUC, this blog is my person place of ramblings and ideas.

As always, thanks for reading!! xoxo, hhr

Photo / Image Sources
Canadian Flag Image
Detroit Red Wings
HootSuite logo and screenshot
NJ Devils player image
Tim Horton’s
Victoria Day Union Jack image

30 Days of Blogging Honesty: I’m Doing It!

I’m going to do one of the blog-a-day things, in conjunction with other bloggers.  It’s this one, called “30 Days of Blogging Honesty.”

Instead of just linking it and getting started though, I somehow de-railed, let my fingers fly, and I cranked out this massive, twisty, tangents-a-minute, intro post that is one of the most convoluted things I’ve ever typed, but I’m feeling silly enough to just let it fly.

Here goes:

I know I’m not really one for bandwagon blogging or photo day-by-day thingies.  But… but… let’s get real here: I am in dire need of some regularity with my posting, some accountability, structure, framework.

I made a hot minute comeback last week with a post or so, and then I went and got wicked sick.  No worries, it’s nothing hardcore serious, I just have a nasty chest cold that’s had me laid up, blah, tired, yucky, coughing and voiceless.

waaaah, i'm sick! see, i'm all swaddled in a throw blanket - it's a visual affirmation of the nasty cold i'm harboring.

Yep, voiceless. Hooray for Duggs, right?  I can only whisper, and even that is quick to bother my throat.  Talking seems to trigger crazy cough attacks, so I’m FAR quieter than the ushje. (How do you phonetically spell uge? Like an abbrev for usual? Yooge? Yooje? Who knows).  Anyways, I’m not talking much and my personal blogging has been slack for at least a month – so, the ideas and thoughts are getting cram jammed, back logged, and I have lots to say and lots to write about.  So this 30 day + a dare challenge seems like a good idea.  I’ve read through the topics and there are ways to post about pending ideas I’ve been mulling over as well as some creative new thoughts that the prompts have prompted.

I did not make this game up, create the image, start the trend, or anything!

A blog I sometimes read is actually doing this 30-day game, and I got the idea from reading this post.  I followed a link back to the original creator of the idea and read this (NSFW) post, the full list for each of the days (sans dare choices, I haven’t found those yet), and decided that I’m in!


-The first blog I just linked, West End Singleton – I’m not really sure how I feel about that blog.  I started following it because she liked a couple of my posts, and when I went over to check out her stuff, I liked the gist of what she was saying.  But as my subscription goes on, I’m just not so sure how I feel… I don’t really relate, and a couple things have totally rubbed me the wrong way.  I’m not saying this for the sake of being a bee-otch, I’m just being open with anyone who may click on over because I’ve posted a link.  I’ll tell y’all when a blogger is my pal or when a blog is one that I really enjoy, respect, turn to for info; similarly I’ll point out when it’s a blog that I don’t always jive with, just to give some context.

I know I’m being more tangential than usual – THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN MY CREATIVE TYPING GETS ALL COOPED UP.

this is my brain on drugs. and congestion. really!

-The second blog that I’ve linked, this one, who made up this 30 day honestly blogging fun: I put the ole NSFW disclaimer on earlier.  Well, i’m playing safe > sorry.  Tom’s blog is a new one I’ve recently had the pleasure of coming across.  His actual content is rated PG, if that; he does admit to an occasional PG-13 or R-rated post every now and again – to which he dutifully indicates with a warning.  The name of his blog, a harmless, natural, term for a most regular and sturdy of human behaviors, might be posted in a big enough font to make you wish you hadn’t opened it two feet away from your boss, though.  I always link to stuff that’s not work-place friendly, and after nearly causing heart attacks in a couple corporate readers, I’m trying to be a bit more aware of these things.  Witnessing my personal growth and selflessness is nice, right?

Anyways, I keep things family-rated here. I know that I have family who reads my blog sometimes (well, to offend my biological family would take both extreme acts of determination and lewdness, and I probably could only get like half of them to blush. maybe.  but my husband’s dear sweet family pokes their heads in here from time to time and they deserve better than most!  also, I blog about my faith and Christian children’s crafts, and thus I like to just keep things easy on the eyes over here as you never know who’s reading and their own sensibilities and so on).

But now I’ve piqued your curiosity, and you’re dying to check out Tom’s blog – aren’t you?

Oh go on, click and come back.  I’ll be waiting!

you don't want to leave this behind now, do you? so open the links i post in other windows or tabs but don't you dare leave me here. i'm wearing the couch throw blanket as a shawl of sorts now. it's like half regal, fancy, smarmy and half loony toons hobo-chic.

Hurry up.

Welcome back.  Yeah, as I was saying, I like Tom and his blog.  So far, the best part about this 30 Days of Blogging Honesty ordeal is that I found him and nicely made web place.  His blog is extensive, his writing is great, I like the kind of content he’s creating and the community he curates.  It’s good stuff.  I hope you’ll go check him out for the freaky name and then stick around for the good reading.  I did!

I did, also, however, commit a major faux pas while I was over there.  Great first impression, I’ve joined up to the 30 days blogging tandem, and I had to go act like a weirdo right away.

You see.  I was reading his blog, just cruising around and checking it out, skimming, site seeing (heh! did I just make up a new term?  I love that, I’ve been making up SO MANY terms lately)… okay, so I was checking out Tom’s blog of manly, early-day expression and I saw this post about his blog’s legalities.  And what do you know- one thing just honestly led to another.  My wheels started turning, the ideas start cranking, and I had an ideagasm that honestly erupted.

Here’s my train of thought:

I was thinking about intellectual property as defined in Tom’s legal disclaimer,


then I thought about this other recent new blog I’ve discovered, BornAtTwentyFive, a lovely, upbeat, beach-y, honest blog, that I really like; but that nonetheless, I awkwardly butted in and gave some unsolicited advice to the blogger about citations, copyright and intellectual property…


Which of course is just calling to mind all the hubbub on the recent Kristin Ruiz plagiarism debacle,


and the subsequent work-blog posts I wrote about her cheating ways and their industry impacts (Part 1 and Part 2);


and with all this hulking chain of a thought free-wheeling through my dayquil-encroached mind, I just went all nutso loose cannon, and I made this HUGE IMPOSING comment.

So yeah.  That was weird. and probably a very weird outlet for the many recent thoughts I’ve had in regards to Internet plagiarism, intellectual property, citations, copyright, for-profit vs. noncommercial, public domain, and other such condundrums of the web-based self publisher.

For anyone interested in the fallout, Tom was really cordial about it all.  Whew!

I do have so many questions, though.  If you thought I’d already posted enough open-ended, my-voice-goes-up-as-I-ask?, over-curious kinda sentence fragments, then just stop reading now.

I has questions?

Tom’s 30 Day Blogging Honesty event is a series of prompts that he has created, and every day I’ll use one of his prompts to write a post.  So is that me using his intellectual property?  Since he just made up the skeleton and I’m creating the flesh, is it my intellectual property?  Both his and mine? I don’t advertise on my blog or make any money directly from it (at this time) – so am I exempt, according to Tom’s specifications of fair use, from not being able to re-use his material?  Is my tie dye ‘biz an indirect means of commercial gain affiliated with this blog?  Is the fact that I’m paid to write on another blog important?  Since he’s encouraging others to use the contest and play along, is it a moot point?  He’s asked that we link to him and use a graphic he’s provided – am I required to cite anything else?

And not to mention that the whole name of this contest is BLOGGING HONESTY – and I’ve been so preoccupied on that goal, its pursuit, those who fall short, my own mess ups and so on.  It’s all about being honest vs. lying.

So circle of life, right?  Comeuppance.  Circular thinking.  Justification.  Great minds think alike.  My own preoccupation and/or fixation.  Regardless the light the idea is bathed in, It all links back to where I started.  Such continuing idea cycles are totally my jam.

And, end scene.

You’ve just experienced like twelve seconds in my brain.  Honestly!  A couple more tangents about gummy bears and the lot of it expressed in a weird tuneless singy-songy way would have totally brought you into my dome.

In summary:  I, as of now, haven’t even started this Blogging Project and I’ve already gone bonky all over a stranger’s blog and had an almost manic episode on my own.

I’ll be an optimist and choose this to say – well, that’s how you know it’s gonna be a good ole time!

nothing to see here, everything is fine! (oh, you can disregard the crazy person, the disarrayed couch, all the latent weirdness and just see the VERY VERY CUTE pooch).

Coming up next, and right away – I’ll actually start my participation in this 30 Day of Blogging Honesty. Woohoo!

As always, thanks for reading! xoxo, hhr

P.S. – who cares about my lame-o apology posts and regurgitated old content.  Today’s random intellectual train wreck felt like a proper comeback! Hello!

Oh, Hi There Bloggies!!

Hi Blog Readers!  How are y’all doing?

I know, I’ve been busy.  This new job of mine is going really well.  It’s a lot of writing though, and I find myself spending hours more at the compy than I ever intended to do again.  It’s funny – I thought I was totally done with this kind of work, and yet,  I love it.  I’m so very glad to be at this kind of a job.

I’m not being very exact here.  I can explain…

I have a job with a great company, ICUC.  I love working for them, it’s challenging and exciting, I’m sharpening my pre-existing skill set as well as learning new things on the regular.  I’m confident that I’m a good fit.  The job I do is a mixed bag of sorts – I work on projects, I work on tasks.  I meet with others.  I’m both a lone wolf and a collaborator.  I make my own hours most of the time, I manage my own schedule.  And… I WRITE.  I write daily, all the time, and in many different ways.  I get to write creatively and I do lots of technical writing.  Sometimes it’s just emails and emails.

At the end of the day, I’ve spent hours staring at the monitor and my writer’s energy is tapped.  Hence slacking at this blog.  And let me say this – once you get out of the regular blogging habit, it’s really overwhelming to jump back in.

My health has been so-so.  I’ve had this little cold on and off, I’ve had some weird upset tummy issues.  But mostly, I’m okay and just super busy.

Check out the work writing I’ve been doing on the daily for my company blog here.  I’m pretty proud of what I’ve been doing work-wise.

So about blogging… I totally have a kajillion ideas all backlogged in my brain and scratched out on my paper notes, and I want to get them out onto hhr!  This is my first attempt at biting the bullet and trying to get back into the groove.  So, if you’re still with me and reading now – know that I’m so appreciative and I’m excited to keep striving for a better balance.

We have some HUGE changes coming up soon.  We’re moving next month, Duggs really got orders so we know it’s real now!  We’ll be saying goodbye to a lot: our friends, Hawaii, this lifestyle, the USMC… as well as being so far away from family – yeah, there’s a lot we’ll be saying hi to when we move back East, and we’re so excited for that.

Even though I’ve been workin’ my tail feather off, things have still been wacky as ever around here.  Poor Duggs, never a dull moment!

So, It’s good to be back and say hi, I hope to be posting more and more, with regularity and consistency.  Cheer me on, yo!

As always, thanks for reading! xoxo, hhr



I’m doing home from my work (my new job!)

I really did get a job, and it’s AWESOME.

Amongst various other official and serious tasks, I’m getting paid to write.  How rad is that?  I’m a pro writer!

Well, kinda.

One of the aspects of my new position is to follow tech news, social media, and the interwebs and write about some of the exciting, innovative, important going-ons.  And a really clutch component of this job o’ mine…

I work from home. 

this is me, in my chair that i work from - in my living room. oh hi there!

I know what you’re thinking: sweatpants, watching TV and having a party on the clock.  In reality, it’s so not like that.  My friend Christina, who I’ve known for years, is now a co-worker of mine.  She recently described the experience so well, I’m just going to quote her:

Working remotely is not for the faint of heart nor is it as easy as people think. It takes a high level of dedication and self motivation, discipline and the ability to juggle many things at once.


And why do people hate on sweatpants so much.  Have they ever worn sweats? What’s not to love? Comfy, soft, ambiguous, nice.  Sweats are alright by me.

For real though: I’m in the process of learning self discipline.  I’ve had more than one medical professional “diagnose” me as ADHD, and OCD.  I take such diagnoses with a grain of salt, honestly.  As for the ADHD thing – I am so easily distracted, it’s crazy.  A noise, something shiny, a text, FB, etc.  I feel like I always know what’s going on and my brain is totally aware of twenty simultaneous things worth thinking about.  Adam Carolla always defines it as “hypervigilence,” and it’s more about super situational awareness and multi-tasking, rather than ADHD.

Okay, I’m totally hyper.  I know that.  And once I get going, I can go nuts.  I get super excited and my hands start flying and I’m exclaiming excitedly and just going off.

here i am excitedly holding up the fancy notebook i made to keep my work stuffs organized.

But… I actually have an amazing attention span when it comes to something that I’m interested in or passionate about.  I’m all eyes on the prize, ya know?   Sometimes, I’m too interested.  Insert the reason they sling that OCD label my way.  I can get a little obsessive about things, sometimes.   One day, I worked for like ten hours in a row.  Oops.

I just get into it and I love it and I just go for it.

So. This post has fabulously gone off track. It’s all related stuff, but I’m sure (if you’re actually interested enough to read this far) that you’re wondering wtf I actually do.  Well, here’s a link to some of my writings. Enjoy!

it appears this is very serious

It’s a multi-faceted job, it keeps me challenged, and it’s stuff that I love doing.  I’m learning so much, I’m reigniting my passion for professional writing, and I work with a crop of the nicest, most welcoming people ever.  So far, my reception has been wonderful.

I am so blessed to have this opportunity, given my health and the fact that we’ll be moving at some point – working from home is more than ideal for me.   On days I don’t feel so well, it’s so much better to be home than to be in an office.  No commute, no special office wardrobe.  There are tons of perks.  I drive way less, less emissions, less gas… so cool!

little pooch naps behind me while i work.

Wish me luck, and I’ll let ya know how it goes !

As always, thanks for reading.  xoxo, hhr

P.S – I know I talked about my place of work.  Just remember, this is my personal blog and everything expressed here is of my own opinion and is NOT the view of the company I work for!

i started a tie dye business!

happyhippierose has branched out:  I started a business selling tie dye!

A group of my friends suggested it one day, and I was giving them all these reasons why it wouldn’t be a good idea.  I was saying it would be too much work and not enough money,  no one would want to buy tie dye, yadda yadda yadda…  Finally, my friend Jenny made the whole concept sound feasible. Something about the was she presented it to me, it just clicked; I knew I had to do this.

I started brewing all these ideas, but I wanted to wait until Matthew called till I started to do anything. (my husband Matthew is currently deployed) The next time Matthew called, I told him about the idea and he was all about it, and even joking that he can’t believe I hadn’t tried to do this sooner.  It was so awesome how supportive he was on that first phone call, and how supportive he’s been on every call since.  He’s so excited to get home and get involved, I love that!

So once I knew my husband was supportive and cool with me starting this, I didn’t waste a minute!   I ordered some pro grade dye right away, and then went out and got some baby onesies, toddler tees and shirts… once my dye came in the mail, I was off and running, and I haven’t looked back!

For the past few weeks I’ve been a dying fool, creating so many awesome happy garments! I’ve been having a blast.  Every time I tie dye, I have fun doing it.  I was worried that I would start to hate it (it was one of my fears in starting a business selling it), but nope, the opposite has happened!  every time I dye I get all excited to see what I can do.  I’ve really been experimenting a lot with my technique and trying to keep stepping up my skill level one garment at a time!

There’s been a lot for me to learn business-wise, but I like a challenge and it’s been hard in a good way.   I’m really proud of how I’ve been managing the financial aspects of this company, keeping up with my balance sheet, and just staying really organized.

You can check me out online:

I’m really proud of how far I’ve come in about a month.  I’ve already dyed and shipped out a fair amount of orders, and everyday more are coming in. And the best part?  So far, my customers are loving my work and they seem really pleased with the garments they’ve bought from me!   I love my customers so much, and I’m grateful for them beyond words!

THANK YOU amazing customers, xoxoxo!!