au domoni iko


it's official! my last day of work is march 10th and we are going back to australia!  flights. are. booked. and while flying is one of my least favorite things to do on the planet, going places is one of my most favorite.  and you gotta get where you're going.

we've decided to honeymoon in fiji on the way back to oz.  did i just type that? honeymooning in fiji?! i will never understand how i get so lucky in this life.  the only downside is how much i will miss the nugs and belly.  that will have me crying at least once a week during the months we are away.  on the bright side, i'll have a new husband to hang out with :)

first stop fiji!
then on to western australia!

spring-time state of mind


it's been so cold here.  so cold that you don't want to go outside, don't want to exercise (not that we do that any other time of year), and you just want to sit under a blanket with hot chocolate watching law and order marathons for days.  

fortunately we're too busy for that.  so instead of lounging, we've decided it will now be called spring time in our house.  the sun is out, incense is burning, music is playing, and we've been spending lots of time cooking and cleaning and pretending we can wear shorts.  who says s.a.d. can't be defeated?!
 ^^you'd think we're from cali the way we eat avocados ^^
 ^^so we're gonna try to grow some avocado trees^^
 ^^re-growing some onions^^
 ^^sweet potato treats for the girls^^
 ^^ homemade granola for brekky^^
 ^^did i mention we love avocados?^^
 ^^roasted red pepper stew with goat cheese^^
^^spring-time lunches are the best :)^^

love is in the air


it was a big weekend! eric's family hosted a shower for me in colorado.  we received so many wonderful gifts that i've already been using and i got to spend some great quality time with my soon to be in-laws.  have i mentioned that i've hit the in-law jackpot? it doesn't get better than these people.

then yesterday i went shopping with cara for her wedding gown.  we went to one store, tried on one dress (she'd picked it out online beforehand), and were out of there in 30 minutes! talk about an easy bride :)
on the way to the bridal store, i got a call from my good friend janey saying that she had just gotten engaged on saturday!  i don't know what is in the water right now, but have the feeling that weddings will be the topic of conversation around here for a while.  such a fun weekend!

pics of my lovely shower below.

weights and measures tea towel
^^ my (soon to be) new sister in-laws!^^
^^and me with my new mother in law :) ^^

a diptych


on saturday, when the weather was lovely (this cold, sadd, winter hadn't yet arrived), eric and i enjoyed the day listening to music, taking the girls on a bike ride/run, and i finally finished and hung up a diptych i made. 
it was inspired by the one below i saw on sanity fair's blog (who also happens to live in dc).  it's hard to figure out what to put behind or around a tv.  i wish our dresser had less crap on it like hers... but we are a family of 4 living in 600 square feet so....
sanity fair
between this and the new bedspread eric's mom got us, i'm really loving our bedroom!

what i do with my free time


^^oh mom, here we go again...^^
^^i'm wearing a hat^^ 
 ^^and rocking it.^^
 ^^what you looking at?^^
 ^^don't need eyes... that's what my nose is for^^
^^i do what i want^^

belle's new trick


belle has learned a new trick! she's extremely food motivated so you can imagine how hard this was for her.  just look at that intense face!  these girls make me proud :)

Belle's New Trick from Katie Gill on Vimeo.

yay belle! and happy weekend :)

the wedding racket


ok recently engaged/married people, i have some questions for you!  we are three months out and planning our heads off.  trying to get everything ready in austin while living in dc has been a little stressful, but we've been able to get a lot done so i think we can pull it off.

first let's talk about pinterest, style me pretty, and all the other wedding sites for a minute.  while i used to think they were the most amazing planning tools and sources of inspiration, i am now seriously questioning my ability to plan a beautiful wedding.  who are these girls?!

did they really only spend $5-10k on a beautifully styled day with gorgeous flowers, food, makeup, hair, photography, attire, etc?  because from where i sit it just isn't adding up! (unless they only had 10 guests)

and then they write things like "we just wanted a really beautiful, unique wedding that was a reflection of us and our family.  i'm a graphic designer/event planner/anything artsy you can be and  the groom is a master craftsmen.  so i did all of the styling and the hubby built these giant mahogany pews with his bare hands. we had a great time crafting all of the little details you see around the venue.  the table decorations are little things i've been collecting for the last 15 years.  everyone i have a relationship with is incredibly talented. my brother is a photographer, one maid is a pastry chef, the other owns a catering company, yada yada yada."

you read that and think to yourself, this is great! look what you can do and it's so cheap! i have tons of time to plan, we can just make all these crafty decorations, and do our own flowers, and get family to make desserts, and have some creative friends help style things, oh but wait... this is not humanly possible! who wants to spend the week before their wedding running around like a chicken with its head cut off to get everything done? who really has these friends with nothing better to do than create your wedding? anyway there will be plenty to do the week before without adding tons of projects to the list.

here's the second thing i'd like to talk about.  say you have a job (that isn't as an event planner) so you don't have the time and experience to do it all yourself.  and say you have to invite 150 people because the groom is catholic and it will mostly be his family ;)

here's some simple math for a 150 guest budget wedding of $10,000:

- $2000 photographer
- $2000 buffet of bbq or fajitas, disposable dishes/cutlery, etc.
- $1500 flowers
- $2000 venue
- $500 dj
- $500 alcohol
- $500 cakes/desserts
- $300 officient
- $500 dress
- $200 invitations/postage

even with those super lowballed prices, if you don't do things yourself we are talking a minimum of $10,000 and this doesn't even include rental expenses like linens, tables, chairs, other decor expenses, dishes and glasses, makeup, wedding party gifts, transportation, ceremony music, i mean there is sooooo much more to spend money on.

i wish that these people would just be honest and say, oh we spent $50k and hired someone to do it all.  we only had to show up!  then i'd feel better because honestly who wants to spend that much on a wedding?

i'm generally on the side of not caring because at the end of the day, if you're married, it was a success!! and that's a great way to think.  but honestly, we all secretly want to end up on SMP ;)

SO - in an attempt to put some kind of reality on the internet, once this whole thing is over, i'm going to do a post with a detailed budget of our wedding complete with pictures.  weddings are a racket, so this will be my part played in an attempt to stop the insanity.

the end.


puerto rico holga


i finally got the holga film developed from our puerto rico trip over 2 years ago! 

clearly i need more practice shooting with film cameras which is a little ironic since it's what we all learned how to take pictures with.  or maybe i just need to read how to use a holga, haha.  

nevertheless some of the pictures are kind of cool, and looking at them reminds me of one of the best vacations i've ever been on.  eric and i had only met about a month before we went, but somehow we both thought going on a trip with a somewhat stranger was an excellent idea.  a great way to get to see a person's true colors is to travel with them.

 we really fell in love on that island and it will always have a special place in my heart :)
bella was not in puerto rico.  i think this was the last exposure that needed to be used so we could take it to get developed :)

a resolution


i have only one resolution this year, and it can be summed up with this:
image via
the idea is to make decisions with this in mind.  it turns all of those little grey things black and white.  for example, do i want to work out today? no i don't want to. instead i'll clean or wedding plan or cook, i can work out tomorrow.  well then, i did not work out. and, for me at least, labeling something i wanted to do as did not is a pretty good motivation to just do it instead.

so we can simplify master yoda's statement with nike's:
image via

my hope is that at some point this mantra will just become a part of who i am and not something that needs to be repeated in my brain in order to get stuff done.  if i can apply this to everything in life, then the new word that will serve to reinforce will be: done.
just do it
image via
let's look to captain picard for another way to phrase it: 
captain picard
image via
the following photo is also very inspirational/hilarious
image via
and because chris pine is SO HOT such an excellent kirk:
star trek next generation
image via
and now... just in case the past few pics haven't brightened your day enough:
captain picard number one
image via
if these beautiful images don't resolve you into getting it done in the new year, i don't know what will!



eric has discovered a treasure trove of amazingness right here in arlington.  we like to buy old prints from eastern market or online and frame them.  they are usually maps or old drawings of mammals since that's what we're interested in.  we keep thinking that instead of buying individual prints, we should just buy the old books.  then we'd have tons of prints to choose from and would spend way less money! 

then eric found bookhouse.  we spent hours there on tuesday, and when they closed told them we'd be back on wednesday.  and we were, and then back again on thursday adding to our pile with each visit.  it's like each book you picked up took you on a little adventure through time - cheesy but true.

lots of wood bound books with no shortage of copyrights dating back to the 15, 16, and 1700s!
i'm a sucker for old maps and found this old atlas meant to accompany a "modern geography" text book.  it was printed in 1830 and is quite interesting/entertaining.  australia, for example, is labeled new holland.  india is called hindoostan, south america is only made up of 8 countries, and as you can see below, africa is missing a huge amount of information!
the atlas also includes a racist classification of people.  apparently you could be savage like indians (american indians), half civilized like morocco, civilized like constantinople, or enlightened like new york.  i think they got it backwards!

north america shows the time when mexico was still a part of texas ;)
another cool book we found and bought for eric called the living world printed in 1872 is full of information about and beautiful plate illustrations of plants and animals.  i particularly liked the colorful cover page and the drawing of the captive chimpanzee.  i would so love to know why this guy has a rabbit!  did he really have it? is it a pet or food?
one room of bookhouse (the state room) has tons of books on various states in the us.  there are rows and rows on virginia but then very little on western states as many weren't granted statehood until the turn of the century.  that alone blows my mind.

most books on the west addressed stereotypes and urged immigrants to move there by providing lovely descriptions of the western lands and people and even include the best routes to take and how to interact with american indians.

this texas book is pretty comical.  they played up texan stereotypes (though many are just truths) with humorous stories and anecdotes.  it also includes tons of racism.  although i had a hard time finding books published between 1800 and 1950 that didn't.
and i'll leave you with this lovely plate of fowl.
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