Calgon! Take Me Away!
True Confessions

There's No Place Like Home

. . . for a short visit, anyway!

For the last few days, I've had the privilege of having both kids home at the same time!


Erin moved to Pittsburgh after her college graduation last spring.  We were happy she was able to sneak in a quick trip home before classes start up next week.  It's been an action-packed few days. 

I dragged her to the Michigan Fiber Festival with me and my Mom last weekend.  She liked the root beer best. . .


and the animals!


(She also managed to pick out yarn for two shawls.  No Lace, though, remains a battle cry!)

She washed her car -- such a luxury to have a hose, you know!  (Apartment living.)


And spent a lot of time reconnecting with family. . .


watching Brian's antics. . .


and regaling us with stories of her new life in urban Pittsburgh (many featuring the "wildlife" she encounters around her -- centipedes, slugs, skunks, bunnies, and bees). . .


We did a lot of shopping.  A lot.  And she ducked in for a quick visit to the hair salon for highlights and a cut. . .


She took care of one more detail, as well. 

Last spring, when Erin was applying for grad school, she made a very risky decision.  She only had Plan A:  Carnegie-Mellon.  That's where she wanted to go; that's where they had the "right" program for her.  Now, those of you with college-age students already know this --- but the economy has sucked the opportunities for this particular age group right out into a black hole.  There are no jobs for them when they finish college; grad school (along with law school and medical school) applications are through the roof, so it's more competitive than ever to go on for graduate studies.  In short, it's very, very tough out there for early-20s with college degrees.

So.  Erin applied for grad school at Carnegie-Mellon with no "safety" plan and no other real plans at all -- and knowing that Carnegie-Mellon only accepts about 15 students each year for this particular program.

She was wait-listed.

She tried not to panic.

No Plan B, you know.

She made a little pact with herself.  She'd get her ears pierced two more times IF she got into grad school; she'd NOT get her ears pierced any more times if she didn't -- because she'd have to look for a job and would be more concerned about "respectibility."

When I was in Paris last April, I got a middle-of-the-night call from Erin.  She had gotten in!  With a small fellowship even!  Plan A worked!

So, yesterday. . .


Respectibility, be damned!  (The two angry-looking piercings in the middle are the new ones.)

Erin leaves to return to Pittsburgh - and Plan A -- this morning.  Classes begin Monday.  Go get'em, Erin!



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Erin embodies "do or die"!! Go grrl! I have a feeling she will build a great life!


Way to go Erin! Isn't it fun, or maybe at times a little breathtaking, to watch them create their lives?


Congrats to you & Erin!


Way to go, Erin! Kym, you and your kids have your mom's face and smile -- the genes are true :-)


Congrats Erin!!! I do know exactly how that feels. I also applied and was accepted to grad school at CMU during the last downturn in the early 80's. Which program is she studying? We live about an hour east of Pgh and I work in a yarn shop not too far from CMU in Squirrel Hill. If she needs anything don't hesitate to email me and I will try and make it happen for her. I am in the city at least once a week if not more.

My baby just finished Swarthmore in Philly and has started teaching Biology at a Pittsburgh Public School so I can even hook her up with some youngun's, although I am sure Erin is super busy, CMU is very intense.

Oh, my oldest also graduated from CMU with her architecture degree and my husband is an alum, so we have lots of roots in the city if you have any questions.

Just wanted to let you know there is a mom and a knitter near by if she needs anything.
Heidi Kozar


Congratulations, Erin!

Diana Troldahl

That's what determination means, and if it had fallen through, she'd have found a different path, and perhaps tried again later :-}


One of your all-time best posts, Kym.


Congratulation and good luck to your beautiful young woman. I adore her new hairdo!


All the best, Erin!! Love the new 'do.


Boy I love her spirit! And her haircut! All the best to Erin and kudos to Mom and Dad!!


I love the haircut and the piercings. I'm glad you got to have a nice visit with both kids.

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