Tuesday, April 30, 2013

writing: on pearls & plaid

he played our song tonight
he played it, and he didn't know
and i let it arrest me

it was the first time, since

it was impulsive, and compulsive
and a long time coming, all at once

i braced myself against the opening strains
and there was a pause, without a pang

but the second verse
and the chorus, those are yours
and by the bridge, i can feel you

i can feel you like a slow flood
pouring into every crook of my body

settling in the corners, pooling in the bends

and suddenly it's a parking lot and October and the moon
and a tangle of flannel arms

and one big knot that leaves me unsteady
about which tangles were yours, and which are still mine

Monday, April 29, 2013

Threads of the Month: April 2013

"I'd have to say April 25th. Because it's not too hot, not too cold, all you need is a light jacket."

Floral cardi & gray Ann Taylor jumper: Goodwill // Necklace & tights: Charlotte Russe // Shoes: Target

Let me just tell you how much my brain has been overloaded these last few weeks. Between running a giveaway (congrats to Ellen C. for winning the $250, by the way!) and prepping for the blogger meetup (5 days!) and selling vintage clothing at the market last weekend and planning a 3-hour roadtrip with this girl to see my favorite band this Friday and gearing up for the Elevate Conference (AND DISNEYLAND!) in 2 weeks and a whole other pile of stuff involving work and real life and something about laundry and remembering to eat....DEEP BREATH.

The point is, it wasn't until I looked at the following photos that I realized how desperately I need to clean my bathroom mirror. Let's focus on the fact that I'm proud of myself for getting dressed and paying rent, smudgy mirror aside :) And, the gray dress + floral cardigan above cost me $15 total at Goodwill. Winning!

The above photos are of my favorite outfit this month, but here's the rest of the lot:

 Neck scarf, teal belt & cat print skirt: Goodwill // Blue tee & tan sandals: Target
Teal V-neck: Target // Black skinnies: Urban Outfitters // Silver bow sandals: Ross
 Polka-dot shirt: Madwell // Turquoise belt: Target // Green accordion skirt: Kohl's
Two-tone denim shirt: F21 // Black necklace: boutique in Utah // Red striped maxi: ModestPop
 Cream tee: Charlotte Russe // Teal necklace: I don't remember // Cut-offs: originally Roxy jeans
Black silky shirt & leopard flats: Target // Dark skinnies: Goodwill
 Green scarf: Safeway // Striped tee: H&M // Overalls: China
Horse print shirt: F21 // White belt: Goodwill // Jean skinnies: Urban Outfitters // Gray TOMS
 Gray shirt: Ross // Black neckalce: Boutique in Utah // Black skinnies: UO // Black heels: H&M
Gray cardi & black flats: Target // Ruffle shirt: Charlotte Russe // Black skinnies: UO
 Green v-neck: Target // Black & white floral maxi: ModestPop
Red plaid shirt: little boys section at Walmart // Black skinnies: UO // Tan ankle boots: F21
 Blue vintage shirt & gray skirt: Goodwill // Neck scarf: Savers // Tan belt: Charlotte Russe
Yellow & white headband: Designs by Dani // White loose shirt: Ross // Green skinnies: JC Penny's
Loose lavender tee & leopard flats: Target // Teal belt & gray skirt: Goodwill
Polka-dot tee: Madewell // Black two-tone necklace: Plumberry // Mocha stripe maxi: ModestPop

And there you have the month of April.
Good afternoon, good evening and goodnight!

Friday, April 26, 2013

3 Important Announcements!

1. If you want to win $250...

The giveaway ends TONIGHT at 11:59pm! If you didn't enter yet, it's your last chance! Go, go, go!

2. If you're an Arizona blogger...

Please join us for the 2nd Quarterly AZ Blogger Meetup on Saturday, May 4! We're going to the coolest location with all the coolest local bloggers (seriously, the first one was a hoot). If you want to come, we need you to RSVP.....TODAY! So check out the event on Facebook and click YES (it's the right choice!) so we can plan on you. See you in 8 days!

3. If you want something to do this weekend in AZ...

Shop Katilda (that's me!) will be selling at the Junk in the Trunk Vintage Market on Saturday! I have some fantastic vintage dresses, skirts, dishes and more to sell...AND I spied on the other vendors and maybe drooled all over the floor because, wow, there's amazing vintage furniture, clothes and home decor items all over the place! And for a $5 entry free, I'd say it's definitely worth hitting up. Come say hello to me in booth 98!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

10 Tips for Going Gluten Free

It's been 4 months since I've had french toast or a donut.

Or really anything bread-based, but I've had french toast and donuts on my mind lately so they grabbed the prime headline space. If you were reading this blog back in December, you know that I went gluten free right before Christmas. (You can read this post for all the reasons why.)

About three weeks ago, I eliminated dairy from my diet as well. But that's a story for another post! Today I'm going to dish out some tips and advice for any GF eaters out there. (That's gluten-free eaters...not girlfriend eaters. If you eat your girlfriends, this is not the blog for you. Also, gross.)

(You can re-pin this article here.)
1. You have to mean it.

This isn't a diet -- it's a lifestyle. And it's hard. It's doable, but hard. You won't realize how often people offered you free food in the past until you suddenly can't have any of it. Work functions, social functions, dates, birthday gifts, etc. -- be prepared to turn it all down. If you aren't committed, you'll go gluten free today and cave tomorrow (or in 5 minutes) when your coworker brings a pile of perfectly glazed donuts to work. And on a GF diet, you can't cheat. The whole point is that your intestines are damaged -- and cheating won't just make you sick for the night, it will set you way back in your entire progress. This is a 100% or nothing kind of decision.

2. Be willing to pay for it.

Eating any kind of health or specialty diet is more expensive. It's just the way it is. But, you have to learn to see food as an investment. If you want your body to shut down and act like you treated it cheaply, then buy cheap food. There are places you can cut corners (buy your veggies at a farmers market, look for sales, etc.), but for the most part, just accept the fact that your grocery bill is going to go up.

3. Be assertive.

Fact: inconveniencing other people makes me seriously uncomfortable. I'm not really one to complain at a restaurant, for example, if my order isn't entirely correct. With my new lifestyle, I'm learning to get over this. I don't like being high maintenance, but I have to be comfortable drilling my servers at restaurants about the ingredients in various sauces, or sending a plate of food back if they messed up my order. I'm still working on not being squeamish about this, but I'm making progress!

4. Be patient with other people.

Your friends and family are going to forget about your new gluten-free lifestyle. Often. And some people might treat you like you're a crazy extremist, on a fad diet that you're going to ditch next week. (I'm a lucky girl because my family and friends have been super supportive.) But occasionally, someone forgets. And I don't blame them -- sometimes I can barely stay on top of which restaurants and which brands I can and can't eat. On my birthday, a friend handed me a big slice of cake he'd picked up for me at a bakery. Rather than hand the bag back to him and say, "I can't eat this, you idiot," I just said thank you and took it home to give to my roommate. No big deal. So be patient with the people around you. They'll learn!

5. Find a support group.

I mentioned in my original post about going gluten free that this girl gave me some great advice and support to get me started. You guys, the gluten-free community is alive and well! There are blogs, farmers markets, expos, websites, Facebook groups, local meetups, GF bakeries, and so on. Seek and ye shall find!

6. Be prepared for sugar cravings.

During my second month of not eating gluten, my coworker had a soda in his hand and suddenly every cell in my body was screaming, "GIVE ME A DR. PEPPER RIGHT NOW. RIGHT NOW. NOWWW." The sugar cravings were intense, and hit me like a brick wall. My med-student friend told me that it made sense, because my body was used to having simple carbs from bread, and wasn't getting those anymore -- so it wanted sugar. I'll admit I cave and just eat sugar sometimes (hey, when you can't eat gluten or dairy, a slushie is your last hallowed ground). But for the most part, I kick those cravings by eating fruit. Keep some fresh fruit on hand (the sweeter the better!) and you'll be good to go when the cravings strike. (Trust me, I suck down snack-pack applesauce on a daily basis.)

7. Research everything. 

Ever stood in a grocery store aisle with your smartphone out, Googling recipes or particular brands to see if they're gluten free? Or took twice as long to order at a restaurant because you need to look on Yelp to see if other GF eaters have reviewed the menu? Get used to doing this. And check out your options for gluten-friendly apps -- I have one that lets me scan bar codes at stores and tells me if I can eat it or not, and another that will find me the nearest gluten-free restaurant using my location.

8. Always carry snacks.

Some of the hardest moments not to cave happen when I am running around town and haven't had a meal and there is no GF food in sight. Or, sometimes I'm at a party or work function and I haven't eaten in hours, slight dizziness is starting to set in and there's a whole table of food I can't eat. I should be better about this than I am, but I'm always grateful when I remember to carry GF granola bars or a bag of almonds in my purse or car.

9. Support GF friendly restaurants.

Implementing a GF menu and keeping a kitchen free of contamination isn't easy. So when I find a restaurant that specializes in GF foods or offers a special menu, I want to support it. I eat there, thank them, support them, spread the word, post about it on social media -- these people deserve the recognition! More and more restaurants are offering GF because they see their competitors having success with it. So get out there and fuel the GF market!

10. Don't give up!

It's so easy to want to call it quits. Trust me, I get that. I once cried in a parking lot because I had a bad day and the GF cupcake I picked up didn't taste as good as a normal cupcake. I'm going to Disneyland in two weeks, and I can't have a churro. If you know me, you know I live and breathe by Disneyland churros. When I'm there, I eat like three a day. But, not this time! And let's be honest -- moments like that can really suck in a big way. But...BUT...for me, it's worth it. And it helps to focus on all the delicious food I still CAN eat. So onward, ever onward! (And always remember, Ryan Gosling supports you.)

Any questions? Other advice you'd give?
Or thoughts on this really long blog post at all? Gluten-free churro recipes...? Feel free to re-pin this blog post for future reference.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

movie review: 42 (and a rant on modern prejudice)

If you haven't heard about this movie, please go watch the trailer right this minute. Done? How are those goosebumps on your arms?

I went and saw this gem a couple days ago, and first let's note that I went and saw this movie, in the theatre, by myself. First, this is further evidence that I am growing increasingly attached to my alone time (see here). Second, it's something I've always wanted to try. And, it was awesome! I felt neither insecure nor lonely. I fully recommend it. Plus, I had a free movie pass and I can't argue with that.

This movie did not disappoint. Here are 4 reasons why:

1. I just love baseball.

I do, I really do. It ignites feelings within me of summer and childhood and family and Benny the Jet Rodriguez. There is nothing more to say about this.

2. I'm a sucker for inspirational sports films.

Rudy! Rudy! Rudy! I'm always up for this genre. I totally adore those ESPN 30 for 30 documentaries. Fact: Just listening to the Rudy theme song makes me feel emotional.

3. I want Rachel Robinson's entire wardrobe.

Ahhhh! Someone please teleport me to the 1940s so I can wear pretty, feminine dresses every day of my life!

4. It got me thinking about modern prejudice.

Every time I watch one of these civil rights, racism-focused movies it stirs something inside me. And I feel like they're all the rage in recent years, from Remember the Titans to The Help. Every time that feeling of repulsion and "how could they treat people like that" stirs inside me, I remember that my own generation still has a long way to go. I hope that when my kids are my age, they'll be watching movies about how gay men still weren't allowed to serve in the Boy Scouts of America in 2013 (this embarrasses and infuriates me every time I think about it) and how the world finally woke up to the fact that homosexuality does not equal pedophilia, just like black skin never equaled worthlessness. And what about gender inequality, religious persecution, and still ongoing racism (ever heard a Muslim called a terrorist)? The point is...we'll get there. And someday we'll be watching movies about our own Jackie Robinsons and feeling glad we've put the closed-minded hate behind us.

Have you seen 42? What did you think?
And have you ever seen a movie at a theatre alone?

p.s. Did you enter the $250 giveaway yet? It ends on Friday! Hop to it!

Monday, April 22, 2013

What to Buy at Thrift Stores: Scarves

Scarves, neckerchiefs and ascots, oh my!

Call them what you will, but I love me a good feminine piece of fabric neckwear. The problem is, I never owned that many of the light summery type. But luckily for me, on a Friday evening outing to Savers, I came across an entire treasure trove of pretty little scarves...for 99 cents! So, I bought five of them.

If you're looking for different ways to tie scarves, check out this video.

And OK, so maybe I bought a dress at Savers too:

Scarf: $0.99, Savers // Dress: $4, Savers // Belt: $8, Target // Shoes: $10, F21

I decided to stray from my typical "take a shabby selfie in my smudgy bathroom mirror in a room where the light doesn't work" and fiddled with the self-timer on my iPhone. I can't say the image res is much better, but hey...welcome to my living room! I do love it so, with all its colors and trinkets.

And please ignore the fact that my belt buckle wandered off to the side. Some mistakes are bound to happen when you take a self-timer photo and have to push the button, run away and then casually pose in 5 seconds flat.

What's your favorite thrift store go-to item?

Friday, April 19, 2013

on all the random jobs i've ever had

I helped plan our work team builder today, and you know what THAT means...shaved ice at Bahama Bucks, followed by a service project at Feed My Starving Children.

All this work + shaved ice talk got me thinking about my first job.

You know it. We're talking age 15, a little shack called Sno Biz, neon t-shirt and cut-off shorts, humid shaved ice hut in a hot parking lot. The smell of shaved ice always takes me back, as I'm sure it will this afternoon as I devour a half coconut, half banana delectable treat. Also, I'm really good at making shaved ice. (Not to be confused with crushed ice, aka a snow cone. I have feelings on this.) Other also, every time I eat any type of frozen treat, my tongue freezes and I have a hard time talking by the end of it. Just me?

Here are all the working adventures I've had:

Age 15: Hawaiian shaved ice shack in a parking lot. I think I was on a perma sugar high.

Age 16: Cold Stone Creamery. My right arm became exceptionally buff.

Age 17: Sears, Men's Department. Helping teenage boys succeed, one prom tie at a time.

Age 18: Server at a 1930s parlor and grill. Became addicted to turkey + bacon + avocado sandwiches.

Age 19: Secretary in the SUU Biology Department office. Enjoyed mingling with the pre-meds. One took me on a date once. He held my hand then played me cowboy songs on his guitar and then never called me again. Not a job perk.

Age 20-21: Reporter and copy editor at the SUU newspaper. And thus the writing career began.

Age 21-22: Public relations assistant for the BYU School of Education. My boss's son was in Maroon 5.

Age 22: Public relations intern at both Off Madison Ave and Make-A-Wish America. Grown-up life.

Age 23-24: Full-time communications/PR assistant at Make-A-Wish. It made my heart exceedingly squishy.

Age 24: Volunteer Coordinator at a non-profit. Gained invaluable compassion for the homeless population.

Age 25-26: Full-time writer at an Internet marketing agency. We have an arcade.

What was YOUR first job? Or most story-worthy?
And excuse me while I go blast a little "She Works Hard for the Money."

Thursday, April 18, 2013

TED Talk: Body Language

Are you a TED watcher?

My workmates and I have taken to watching TED Talks on Thursdays during lunch. I've decided to start sharing some personal TED favorites on here so you can partake as well! I love TED because they keep it short, keep it interesting and keep it fresh. I always feel a little more educated and ready to strike up intelligent conversations after watching one.

Today's pick: Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are

Give it a watch! The premise is that by purposely altering your body language, you can affect your mental state. I've recently been using the power stance technique in everything from performing a song in church to motivating my team to play more confidently in a charity kickball game last weekend. Can I just tell you I performed that song without a trace of nerves? Totally mental, but totally works. (Even if we ended up losing at kickball, in the end. It was still fun to power stance in the dugout.)

Any favorite TED suggestions?
Thoughts on this one or body language in general?

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

so, i have a favorite flower

I have a serious weakness for flowers.

I remember the first time a boy showed up on my porch holding a little bouquet of simple flowers before a second date. Swoon! Flowers just get me.  I know they can get pricey, but it doesn't have to be two dozen roses to be a romantic gesture. Grabbing a couple dandelions from a nearby field is gesture enough. (And actually more endearing, really.) I've been known to buy myself a cheap bouquet of flowers at the grocery store, just because my life needed a happy thought. I'm also prone to tying a ribbon around the vase or stems.

I'm an appreciator of many types of flora.

I've always been somewhat partial to the happy little orange and yellow flowers that Arizona loves to use in street landscaping. I like the way they bounce and bobble in the rush of wind from cars going by. And as a desert dweller, I can't argue with a wall of bougainvillea, pictured directly above (bo-gahn-VEE-ya, if you need help with that one). Also, I'm pretty bent on having an array of white peonies (pictured at the top) at my wedding festivities someday. There's something so puffy and friendly about a peony. I kind of want to eat them.

But most of all, I love bluebonnets.

I'm an Arizona girl for sure, but I've got Texas in my blood. From birth to age 7, I lived in the Fort Worth area and frequently went back after that to visit my mom's side of the family. I. love. me. some. Texas. And what is the Texas state flower? Bingo. There's nothing like a rolling field of bluebonnets. Is it even possible to find a bouquet of these outside the Lone Star State? I'd be mighty pleased if it was.

Do you have a favorite flower?
Or are you not really a floral person? What if I gave you a bluebonnet? Yes yes?
p.s. All this flower talk got started because I was listening to Tom Petty's "Wildflowers" earlier this week. I highly recommend it.

pictures via 1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5

Monday, April 15, 2013

mr. rogers + boston

I generally refrain from posting twice in the same day, but I wanted to pass this image along. It's exactly in line with my own feelings on the tragedy in Boston. As I combed through news stories, I felt the gut reaction of "How can there be so many horrible people in the world?" Then I focused on all the emergency personnel and brave civilians jumping in to help the injured. The stories keep on coming about amazing men and women running toward the chaos to help save lives. I'm grateful to be reminded that there will always be more angels than evil. 

My heart is sad, but there is still good in the world!

music: come on eileen

I have a serious soft spot for oldies.

Give me the 1950s, 60s and 70s and I'm a happy clam! This probably heavily influences my strong interest in modern folk music. I had plans to share another song on this lovely Monday morning, but then I paused to listen to the following classic and all other plans suddenly demanded to be postponed.

I dare you to listen to this and not feel like throwing your hands in the air and dancing. I triple dog dare you.

Plus, they're wearing overalls in the music video! 
Take it from someone who knows, you can't fake that kind of joy.

p.s. Did you enter the $250 giveaway yet? It's still going strong!

Friday, April 12, 2013

$250 April Blogger Group Giveaway

I’m excited to join up with some amazing bloggers for this fantastic group giveaway, hosted by Camille from Friday We’re in Love, yours truly from right here at katilda.com, and Megan from And here’s to you, Mrs. Robinson!

The best part: the prize is a whopping $250! (Who doesn’t want an extra $250 in their pocket?) That’s right, cash, sent straight to the winner!

Check out the awesome group of 25 bloggers who have teamed up to make this giveaway possible and then head to the Rafflecopter widget below to enter. You can earn up to 75 entries, so get crackin’!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The giveaway closes at 11:59pm on Friday, April 26.
Good luck to everyone who enters!