©2017 E. R. Smith

Whispering in my ear possibilities

Assuring a success that is blurred to my current vision

Touching intimately my spirit, knowing

Certain of my strengthfortitude

Certain of my giftpersistence

Knowing more than I; within me saying, “let go.”

Illuminating all the paths, and steps

New perceptions  reinvent my reality.

I took this 2008 Photo of Olafur Eliasson’s Waterfall Beneath the Brooklyn Bridge.  Rochelle Steiner, Director of the Public Art Fund, stated in part, “He has found a way to integrate the spectacular beauty of nature into the urban landscape…”



CHilDhood: South Bronx 1970’s


By E. R. Smith

The South Bronx experience.  New York circa the 1970’s was my childhood playground.  I played in abandoned buildings with my little brother and friends.  We didn’t know about serial killers; for that matter we didn’t yet know children could die.  Adventure was the name of our day long before Dora the Explorer.  Public transportation was dirty, crowded, and colorful. I saw many a graffiti artist compete for best picture.  I saw them all as artists.  Mattresses were trampolines for the Olympians America has never met.  Even then I thought as I watched my friends flip; where’s the committee that chooses participants for the Olympics?  I want to see my friends win a medal.  Childhood doesn’t understand demographics.  Politics were a mystery.  We were totally poor and never knew it.  Ignorance was all around us and we were blissfully unaware.  Knowing what I know now; I still miss my childhood and wouldn’t change a thing.


A Teachable Moment

Teachable Moment

A Certificate From ORS

By E. R. Smith


For ten weeks in the evenings I along with eight brave souls took part in the Office Readiness Series offered at the New York Public Library.  Remaining relevant for me is essential; and so I trekked to the Parkchester Library and worked on Microsoft Office.  While Word and PowerPoint were just so much creative fun for me.  Excel was not.  Spreadsheets, Vlookups, and pivot tables were akin to geometry in eleventh grade.  I did not score well on the preliminary assessment and I just barely passed the ending assessment.  But do you know it never occurred to me to quit?  My daughter and a classmate’s daughter watched this process unfold for their mothers.  The children’s portion of the library is on the same floor as the classes; so many times I would look up from my laptop to find two pairs of eyes just watching through the door window.  I would hear commentary from the girls afterward on whether or not they observed us paying close enough attention. This was the first time my child commented on my intellect; as she watched me grow she assessed, “Mom, you know you’re very smart.”

This past Thursday my classmates and I celebrated our graduation from this coursework.  I was elated.  Although I hold an MSEd. in Education, this little certificate is dearer to me.  It represents proof that I can learn anything I put my mind to. I am teachable.  I can reinvent myself.   It reaffirms what I tell my child everyday; never give up on yourself.  There are easy A’s and impressive C’s.  Excel was definitely a hard C.  I continue to take as many workshops as I can on Excel so that while I might never master it; it won’t frighten me away.

Next up coding in order to build the blog you’re reading right now and Photoshop…html anyone?

TechConnect NYPL


New Horizons


New Horizons

Following the Lion

By E.R. Smith

There is a lion in the jungle… right at The New York Public Library’s Schwarzman location.  The lion is symbolic for me of the strength of knowledge.  Being a lifelong learner is the goal for the New Year and Beyond.



Treasures in My Apple

“Open a whole new world for your family; by being welcoming to the wealth of the unfamiliar.”

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By E.R. Smith

NYC is a treasure I love exploring.  Turn the corner of your neighborhood and you may meet a whole new culture.  My favorites are China Town and Brighton Beach.  Best for me is that the MTA takes me straight away to new views sounds and tastes.  Open a whole new world for your family; by being welcoming to the wealth of the unfamiliar.  These treasures are truly priceless.


Speaking on Natural Hair

“…apparently my “hair speak” doesn’t translate well.”

Speaking on Natural Hair

©2016 E. R. Smith All Rights Reserved

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When I think about a current personal protest; I think about my daughter’s hair.  I have kept her hair it’s natural texture purposefully.  I was concerned with maintaining her hair’s length and health.  I didn’t have much hair  on my head while growing up and hers has always been so bountiful.  For myself, I have gone back and forth with relaxing for some years before deciding within the past two years to remain natural.  It’s a hard decision, that has surrounded me with judgements from colleagues, friends, family, and prospective employers.  I read an article on madamenoire.com, and the portion that stuck with me is “people judge you by what they think your hair is saying.”  I know my hair says I accept and love myself.  But, apparently my “hair speak” doesn’t always translate well.  I’ve seen a number of friends of all hair types suffer from hair loss.  A number of women in my community suffer from alopecia.  My goal is to keep my hair, and to guide my child in the knowledge that hair length, health, and versatility is a goal.  I tell her to smile like Viola Davis at the Oscars with that spectacular green fitted dress and her own lovely locks. I want her to ignore controversy and set trends. I’ve told my child to be daring with her dos and wear wigs, weaves, pieces-but keep natural growth healthy.  I tell her to avoid hair extensions done in salons, that pull and break hair leaving one with shorter hair than when the extensions began and compromising hair edges.  We have all seen women of color with wispy edges and bald spots.  I feel like Ms. Davis’s character on the show How to Get Away With Murder; in the mirror scene where she snatches off her wig.  Done with faking it!  Upworthy.com posts that Viola was only supposed to remove her makeup.  She went a little further, and send a shock through me as I watched.  I just knew that the next social media minutes following would be filled with commentary on her actions….all because she had the audacity to show her hair.

So there you have it, my protest.  Where I risk being judged as ugly, unprofessional, lazy, and foolish.  As my child turns twelve at the end of December, she requested box braids for her birthday; always done without extensions, just her natural hair.  I know other mothers out there are smiling, because they know there will come a time for her to make her own styling decisions.  I know, I’m smiling too.  I’m also praying she makes the healthy decision.  Protest.

Continue reading “Speaking on Natural Hair”


A Paternal Soothing of the Soul

“I recently read an article on the devastating effects of absent fathers on girls.”

©2016 E. R. Smith All Rights Reserved

A Paternal Soothing of the Soul



When I watch my husband and child explore and play this soothes and relaxes me.  I recently read an article on the devastating effects of absent fathers on girls;  I am one of these dadless girls.  David Blankenhorn; calls this trend in absent fatherhood a “current social epidemic”.  He lists nine terrible impacts of fatherlessness.  The effects range from higher suicide rates to increased social, mental, and behavioral issues.  My child’s birthright is validated with every hug, conversation, and  outing she shares with her dad.  This is not just precious; its priceless.  A paternal soothing of the soul.