Thursday, October 31, 2013

Portals of Venezia

I have a thing for European doors and windows. Some are gorgeous in their simplicity. Some are decorated beautifully. I love them all. Here are some of my favorites from Venice.

Venetian door
Venetian window

Venetian door
Venetian door

Happy Halloween! Use this code: OCTOBER31 at my Etsy site to receive 31% off your order. Valid today only.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Leonardo Da Vinci

We ran across a small museum of Da Vinci's works and I had to go in. Will has been in a different one in a different part of the city and he said it was similar. It just had different inventions on display. I would love to see more! When we paid for our tickets, we were encouraged to play with the displays (unless there was a sign saying not to touch) and take pictures (as long as the flash was off for the paintings). Score! We had a blast in there.

[hover over the pictures for captions]

Leonardo da Vinci inventions
Leonardo da Vinci inventions

Tuesday, October 29, 2013


I have a major love/hate relationship with Venezia (Venice). It's so gorgeous and full of hidden gems. We're always finding awesome shops, delicious food, and gorgeous views. But it's a ridiculous maze trying to get anywhere. When we find a cool painting or mask or journal or whatever we buy it immediately because we're never going to be able to find that shop again.

My friend's parents were so easy to travel with. They wanted to see a few major sites, shop, and wander. I loved them! So that's exactly what we did. We saw the Rialto Bridge and Saint Mark's Square and shopped and wandered.

Venezia Santa Lucia train station
Rialto Bridge
Tarnowska's American Bar
Saint Mark's Square

Will wanted to point out that the basilica has been under restoration construction since before we moved to Italy. "It has been more than two years and they're still working on it!"

Monday, October 28, 2013

All Is Right in the World

My beloved Oregon Ducks are at #2. My beloved Seahawks are playing tonight. All is right in the world.

I made sure to sit on Will's chest while he was waking up so he could open his eyes and come face to face with the Oregon logo on my shirt. He thought he was getting sexy time. When he realized what was going on, he tried to throw me off the bed. As an act of defiance, he put on his Buccaneers Super Bowl championship shirt. Touché. Well played, Sir.

Sure, neither of my teams have a national championship...yet.

But both my teams are great this year. GREAT. Both. Great. Mine.

It would be an upset if the Ducks didn't go to the BCS Bowl. The NFL is a little less predictable, but the Seahawks are well on their way to getting into the Super Bowl.

I just had to let everyone know. Monday has been a great day for Ech so far...and an okay one for Will.

The Lesser Photographed Parts of Venice

Will and I have been to Venice a number of times. So we thought that instead of taking the normal pictures and showing you the usual Venice sights, we'd show you some of the lesser photographed parts.

By the way, this was all Will's idea. My man is such a genius.


We felt like such dorks running around, taking pictures of construction sites and blank walls. We were both giggling uncontrollably and Will kept yelling at me to hurry up because people were staring. My friend's parents didn't give any indication that they thought we were weirdos until we told them what they were doing. They got really into it too and began pointed out spots for us.

The trash guy was kind of cool though. How often do you see a trash collector using a trash boat? First he loaded the metal container. Then rolled the container over to the edge of the water and hooked it onto an arm on the boat. Kind of like trash trucks do, but it was a boat so it seemed cooler.

Thursday, October 24, 2013


My best friend's parents came to visit! They were so much fun to hang out with. We wanted to hit the ground running and make their trip as full as possible. But we knew they'd be tired straight off their flight so we took them to Lake Barcis. It was lowkey and relaxing to walk along the water.

Lake Barcis
Lake Barcis
Lake Barcis
The water is always super cold, but Will had to touch it to make sure. Yep, yep it's cold!
Lake Barcis
Lake Barcis
Always a kid.
Lake Barcis
He laughed at me at first. But of course he had to try it out.
Lake Barcis
Lake Barcis

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Best Landlord Ever

I apologize if you read this post right away. I wrote it as soon as I got home so I was a little drunk and wrote as I thought so this post is a bit awkward. I have tried to edit as best as I can, but it's a bit of a mess.

I went shopping with my landlord, his daughter, niece, and nephew. My landlord's daughter is going to be Wonder Woman for Halloween and I promised her lots of candy if she comes to our house next Thursday. She threatened to toilet paper and/or egg us if I don't come through. Her English is getting really good. She's eight, by the way, and the most outgoing, entertaining kid I've ever met.

After shopping, my landlord asked if I had time. Will was at work for the rest of the night so I had nothing to do. So we drove to a nearby town to drop his niece and nephew off. I got to meet his sister-in-law, her husband, and the rest of the children (they have five altogether...along with two dogs, a rabbit, a cat, and a turtle). As soon as I sat down, they served me a glass of wine...and then another. Then the husband asked (in Italian) if I liked beer. I answered, "Si!" So he opened a bottle and handed it to me with a glass. I poured half the bottle into my glass and pushed the bottle across the table to his empty glass, thinking we were sharing it. He then yelled at me to fill my glass, "NOT HALF! FILL! FILL!" Damnit. These people were about to get me drunk.

I swear! Every time my landlord picks me up, I end up drunk. I've come to terms with the idea a long time ago. May as well enjoy it before I get pregnant.

Luckily, they put out some cracker chips (kind of like tortilla chips, but thicker and a cracker). After that, they sliced some AMAZING sausage and bread. They insisted I use two slices of sausage with my bread while they all only had one with theirs. Italians and their hospitality always melt my heart.

While we were shopping, I found out my landlord had a puppy that I haven't met yet and he found out I was on my own for the night. So he took me home. His wife cooked up some mashed potatoes and a steak. As always, her cooking was spot on and delicious! I learned that Italians like to cook their steak plain. When they serve it they season it with salt and pepper to taste. Then they pour olive oil over it. Olive oil! They thought I was weird for confirming, "Olive oil? On the bistecca?" I had my landlord pour some for me as if he were preparing his own steak. Just to try it their way. Not bad! Their steaks are also different than our American ones. They're very thinly sliced and look almost like thin pork chops, but still very delicious.

I'm also becoming a big fan of Italian caffè (coffee). Instead of drip coffee, they make espressos. They, too, add milk and sugar. Or maybe they only offered milk because I'm an American. I know for a fact that Italians add sugar to their caffè. I've seen it with my eyes. Seriously though...delicious. VERY strong. But delicious.

Their puppy, Florida (Flo for short), loves me a lot more than their last dog did. She (I think it's a she) was glued to my side and was loving all over me. I wanted to scoop her up and take her home to cuddle with me. I already know Will is going to die over her. Our landlord said he'd bring her to visit.

Sorry for the blurriness. Flo wouldn't stop moving and it was dark. But trust me...she's a cute little fluff ball!

Monday, October 21, 2013

Rioting and Hostility


I have probably mentioned this before, but Will is a Florida State Seminoles fan and I'm an Oregon Ducks fan. If you follow college football, you already know the reason for this post's title.

For those of you who couldn't care less about football, but are curious as to why I'm so angry...

The Oregon Ducks have been ranked #2 all season. They are undefeated and have spanked every teamed they've played so far. All year we have been predicted as the favorite to go to the BCS Bowl (the big championship game) to play against Alabama (the #1 ranked team).

The Florida State Seminoles (prior to this week ranked #5) just crushed Clemson (prior to this week ranked #3). So it was a huge win for them.

Every single poll has UO holding at #2 and FSU advancing to #3 to take Clemson's spot. Every.Single.Poll. But the BCS computers gave the #2 spot to FSU and UO is now #3. 

This is my exact reaction:
First, I read a Facebook status from the Oregon Ducks that mentioned our latest win and something about being #3. So I sat straight up, screamed "OH MY GOD!!!", and climbed over Will (who was still sleeping) to grab his iPad (it has better internet reception meaning faster load times). He had looked up the rankings on ESPN last night to see if they updated before we went to bed, so all I had to do was refresh the screen.
Next, I started slapping him and screaming obscenities. You may be saying, "Ech, that's a little extreme. Calm yourself." You don't know Will. He doesn't like to root for his team. He likes to talk shit about everyone's favorite team. He spent all day yesterday picking on me and making little comments about how all the opinion pieces were predicting that FSU would edge out UO. When it comes to sports he likes to get under people's skins and get them all riled up. 

So then, I tried to kick him out of bed. But he's too heavy for me to move. Instead I pouted all morning until he left for work.

What was Will's reaction? "Fear the spear" and chopping motions. Then, fake apologies and, "It's okay, you'll get your spot back after you beat UCLA & Stanford." Followed by a lot smug grins all day long. Now for Halloween he wants to dress up as a Seminole with a spear in his hand with a duck impaled at the end and he wants to drag an elephant behind him with a spear in its side.

Like I said on Twitter, this is going to be a very hostile home for Will for awhile.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Ech & Will in Real Life

The number one thing you need to know about Ech & Will...we're weird. Here are some glimpses of us in real life:

Will cupped his hand around my chin while I was lying on my stomach in bed checking my Facebook. He told me to use it as a head rest. And I did. We then spent the next few minutes like that until his arm got tired. Don't ask why. I don't know. It seemed natural at the time.

Will: I want a red panda. Look it up and see how much it would cost.
Ech: Aww! They're endangered! We can't buy one. Ooo! We can adopt one for $50 or $5 a month. They even have pictures and we can pick which one we want.
Will: [practically jumping out of his seat] REALLY!? There's no way it's that cheap! Really!?
Ech: [sensing he was interpreting incorrectly] No. Adopt them as in we send money for them to be taken care of. Like those kids in Africa.
Will: What? Fuck that! I want one to keep! Look on the black market.
After that we watched red panda videos on YouTube. The one with the pumpkin is our all-time favorite. We also like to talk about what it would be like if we really did get to have a red panda in real life. But then we both end up depressed that we will never be able to have one as a pet.

We act like cats to annoy each other. I'll paw at his face with my hands. He'll rub his head against me. I'll sit on his chest between him and his iPad. He tries to sit on me. I say "tries" because I end up getting mad and yell at him to stop crushing me.

Will: Did you just smell my hair?
Ech: Yeah, I wanted to make sure you washed it. Sometimes I think you fake it.
Will: No. I did. I'm not stupid.
Ech: Well...
Will: Faking orgasms don't count.
Ech: What!?
Will: I don't know. I really don't know what we're talking about.

We like to misquote funny parts of movies or tv shows to each other. I say "misquote" because neither of us can ever memorize quotes. Most times we're the only ones who understand what the other is trying to quote. We have learned not to do this in front of other people because our misquotes are that bad and so far off.

Soo...yep. We're weird.

Friday, October 11, 2013


The wonderful Jen from The Adventures of Our Army Life listed me for the Sunshine Award. How sweet is she?

Sunshine Award

The Rules Are:
1. Include the award logo in your post.
2. Link to the person who nominated you.
3. Answer 10 questions about yourself.
4. Nominate 10 bloggers to receive the award.

1. What is your biggest fear?
Something happening to Will or my family. I can't imagine what it would be like without them.

2. Are you a night owl or an early bird?
Definitely a night owl. I do enjoy being an early bird, but it's not something that comes naturally.

3. If you could change one thing from your past what would it be?
I feel like if I changed something from my past, it would alter my current life. I very much enjoy what I have going on so I'd let my past mistakes stand.

4. Do you have any pets, if so what kind?
I wish! Will definitely wishes. We really really really want a dog. Even if we could have one at this house, it wouldn't be fair since we don't have any space for it to run around. If our next duty station is in the US then we'll definitely make sure to get a place with plenty of room for a dog and a kid.

5. Did you do everything you wanted to do this summer?
Yep! I didn't set the bar too high with expectations though. I knew I wanted to do some traveling and I did a lot of that back home and a little here in Europe. Overall it was a successful summer.

6. What is your favorite song?
The answer is constantly changing. Right now I have "I Don't Want This Night to End" by Luke Bryan on repeat.

7. If you were on a deserted island what 3 things would you take with you?
My husband, a good book, and my iPhone.

8. Would you rather cook or go out to eat?
If we had the money, we'd eat out all the time. I love to cook, but I hate doing dishes.

9. What is your dream car?
A BMW of some kind. My husband has a specific BMW that he wants, but I like pretty much all of them.

10. If you could have any job in the world what would it be?
I'm doing it now! I'm a housewife. But if I had to work I always thought it would be so much fun to work in book publishing.

My questions:
1. Who are your top blogger crushes?
2. If you could sit and chat with someone in all of history who would you talk to?
3. What are you avoiding doing right now?
4. Do you have any big plans for the holiday season?
5. What tv shows are you addicted to?
6. What are your guilty pleasures?
7. Who is the person you go to when you need to vent?
8. What do you put on your pizza?
9. Where do you want to go to on your next vacation?
10. What do you think of this mustache craze?

I nominate anyone that reads this post. I genuinely want to know the answers to your questions. So if you don't want to make a whole post, leave your answers in the comments.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013


I'm so proud of Seester! She re-enlisted for another four years today!

If you don't follow the blog regularly, Seester is on the left in the flight suit.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Life Lessons

Our life lesson of the week: Automated car washes are our best friends and are so much more fun than the do-it-yourself washes.

I had illusions of laughter and sponge fights and maybe sneak attacking each other with the water hoses and a well-washed car. But that's just for the movies. It was too cold for water fights; there were no sponges anywhere; and the time limit made us panic so we did a crappy job. On top of all that, we spent double the amount feeding the time machine than it would have cost to through the automated wash.

car wash

We were over at our friends' house apartment the other day. They live on the second floor and their kitchen overlooks the cars. Our roof definitely has tiger stripes. I blame that one on Will. The spot we missed on the back bumper, however, was my fault.

See that building in the background of the picture? That's the drive-through automated car wash. That's the one we'll be hitting up from now on.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Expectations vs Reality

Before Will came home, all he wanted to talk about was all the traveling he wanted to do when he got back. I had a feeling it was what he needed to get through those last few weeks and it was something for him to look forward to. Sure enough, we still haven't done much of anything. I think he needed the last week and a half to just relax and do whatever he wanted (aka play video games and watch silly Vines). I don't mind because he's home and we're together. He doesn't mind because his NCAA 14 character is winning championship games and winning all the awards. (I made him make his character go to University of Oregon GO DUCKS!)

I got him hooked on Orange is the New Black. Does anyone know if the second season is coming out anytime soon? He just finished the last episode so we're sad about that.

movie night
Getting settled in to watch Orange is the New Black

I made special bridal party shirts for my best friend's wedding. I've been wearing my shirt around the house a lot. I thought I'd mess up and need extra shirts...but I didn't. So now I have all these extra eggplant/purple shirts to decorate. Since I had the materials anyway, I'm selling everything I make with the leftovers at a discount.

High Heels & Combat Boots
Click the image to go to my store.

While Will plays video games, I've been working on shirts for the purple sale. I've also been invited to join a group giveaway and auction at Combat Boots N Lace, so I've been putting together some shirts for that too. I got about 40 new followers on Facebook in a few hours just from partnering up with them. What!? So I should probably get back to those shirts. I also have to package those bridal party shirts for my friend and these shirts for my my sisters-in-law:

High Heels & Combat Boots