life as of late…

for the past two episodes of netlix’d parks and rec (can i be couple-friends with will arnett and amy pohler already?)(…couple friends…eeeek…), i’ve been trying to  figure out the correct onomatopoeia to describe the sound of a deep inhale through the nostrils. my front-runners: ‘mmmm’, ‘ffffffff’, and ‘huuuurrrff’

maybe? kind of? are you feeling it?

now, enough of onomatopoeia, and on to me. that’s what we are all here for, right? (unless you are here for the other simply brooke–a fan fiction author that writes for digimon)

onwards: i’m married, you guys! and to answer the next question, it’s been great. people keep asking us if we like it and, if we are being truthful, we don’t really know yet. if being married is cruising, free meals, parties centered around your love, and a surplus of tagged facebook photos, then we are old pros. marriage is easy. ha. (…we have actually had a hard time adjusting from the cruise-life to real-life; we have to refrain from ordering 3 entrees and just leaving our garbage everywhere)

we do know that we love each other, though. it has been so fun to have him around 24/7 and to adjust to being married (answering to ‘brooke stapleton’, controlling nighttime gas, de-hair-ing the shower after use, and remembering that the crimson wave is a completely natural bodily function that happens once a month…to reiterate: i. am. not. dying.).

so here’s a little catch-up a la pictures (my life just looks better in the instagram ‘walden’ filter…) and a list (i’ll talk alllll about the actual ceremony later!):

one: we went back to my neck of the woods in northern idaho! we got all northern-idaho-y and rode the hiawatha trail (recommend! recommend!).

two: can you get over that sunset? me neither.

three: vegas, baby! we didn’t really mean to. nor did we want to. but we ended up in the crazy hot las vegas with my family and had a blast! i forget all the details and can’t really expound on this point but…it was a blast! exclamation point!

four: registering for a marriage license was sort of stressful. i thought that they were going to ask me really in-depth questions about him that i would have to know the right answer to (favorite color? elementary school crush? allergies?!). thankfully, they didn’t. but they did ask me my age…twice. “nine…teen…” (something about that ‘teen’ word evokes instant eyebrow raises?)

five: more lake time. but this time post-marriage…you know what that means! shared checking accounts! but really. jeff is slowly becoming me with the bowl of soup and can of ice-cold diet coke. and i am slowly becoming him with occasional showering and clothes washing. oy.

six: you know when you are apart from something for a while and you realize how much you actually love it? distance makes the heart go stronger? it’s like that one time i didn’t eat hot dogs for a year, just because. or when i haven’t seen my sisters in a while. they’re funny people, you know?  (and cute. and smart. and…another endearing adjective.)

seven: jeff and i have a problem. we both still think we are juniors in high school. we threw chad a surprise party (SURPRISEEEE!)(okay, side-note: all the kids hid in the bathroom to surprise him. five minutes before, i went into the bathroom and…relieved myself. thoroughly. ha. when they went in there, i heard someone say: “SICK! who farted?!” hahahaha…oops), and we both couldn’t help but try to impress everyone. i even overheard jeff telling a few of the boys about his high school football days that ended abruptly because he “got kicked off the team” (…you GUYS! he simply didn’t fundraise enough and broke his femur…dirt biking…cool points restored?).

eight: …we didn’t adjust well to a wedding event that wasn’t centered around us. like, what was that about? (only kidding. it was GREAT to not have to be paraded around– no strained smile muscles here!)

nine: hi hanna’s face and a plate full of brownies! when we got back to provo we realized that we live right next door to my morgan, hanna, avery, and maddy friend. mooching score: 1, us. thanks for the dinner, morgs ;) (eww. i never call her that. why did i just do that?)

ten: call us jim and pam! no really, please? i was on a quick job-scramble and applied everywhere…and ended up scoring a job at jeff’s place of work. ha. they have FREE fountain drinks there and chairs that spin and a softball team and everything! we work in two different departments but it’s still so fun having someone to carpool with and to kanoodle at the water cooler.

eleven: …and to take lunch breaks with, too. isn’t he handsome?

twelve: jeff’s brother shane is living here now! and they like to match and change tires together and stuff. (there’s your shout-out, shane. you happy?)

…school’s tomorrow. sleep tight!

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happy mother’s day!

“A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials heavy and sudden, fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends who rejoice with us in our sunshine desert us; when trouble thickens around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts.” //Washington Irving happy mother’s day to all mama’s out there, especially my own! i am so thankful for the profound influence that she continues to have on my life. she is such an example to me and makes motherhood look like the best job in the universe. she truly is the poster-child for selflessness (in the words of robert brault: “[she is] most likely to write an autobiography, and never mention herself…”), love, and kindness (but the perfect amount; she can still tell some killer jokes and tease you to a near-death).

…and she gave the ‘curvy’ gene, so…

a million thanks, mom! you’re the literal best.

*original image via

today i am especially grateful for…

the sweet lady at the passport place for complimenting my eyebrows. bless you, passport place lady!

long runs at my own glacial pace… in other words, long walks with short jogging stints (and lots of nicki minaj!).

intramural sports in their entirety. why are the people with wives and kids on the sidelines always the most aggressive and outspoken? why?

a super slow day at a super lax job that led to a shared root beer float with jeff and a phone call to my mom (phones at work?! i know!).

triple A for fishing locked keys out of the car for the 3,435,264th time (not my fault! not my fault!).

power naps.

that in a few days i’ll be on my merry way to omaha! omaha? omaha! to pick up my nikki friend and drive her to provo for a tour of town and a visit with the uvu golf coach (she’s a stud).

coworkers that know me well enough to bring me a large diet coke with two squirts of cherry and crushed ice during shift changes.

…and this guy for being…himself.

hats off to you, 2011.

2011: ready, go!

in january, i witnessed the most insane flood that moscow has ever experienced (at least i’m ALMOST sure), discovered my love for high buns and bright lipstick, made lots of resolutions that i’m nearly positive i broke within a week, and got a new phone that unleashed the narcissist hidden inside of me.in february, i received my acceptance letter to byu and was too tired to muster up any excitement, watched jesse jackson give a speech but really listened to the juicy gossip being told in front of me, went to sky-high for the first time ever, and sat on the student side for the last time ever watching high school basketball.

in march, i road-tripped to utah with my family and jason and paraded all around provotown, welcomed my cousin dan home from his mission, won a bingo game with mckenzie, visited my kylie-friend in san diego (and was happily stuck there for five more days due to backed up planes) and went into a food-coma every single day, and played in my last club soccer game…ever!in april, i made the adult-decision to attend summer term at byu, listened to general conference and learned about the simple expressions of love, wore heels to school for the first time ever, went to the renaissance fair with my family, and watched a lot of high school baseball.

in may, i went to my last high school prom with my friend logan and left the night with a crown, sash, and realization that that high school was basically over, skipped school A LOT and opted for bike rides and picnics instead, put the finishing touches on the senior skip day, seriously soaked in the beautiful weather and really loved on moscow, fell off my bike and busted open my head, and did not get raptured.in june, i graduated from high school and nervously gave the graduation speech, had the most fun graduation party at my house and attended an all-night one put on by the high school (…where i was hypnotized!), said goodbyes to my family and friends and moved to utah…only to see them two weeks later in portland at my grandpa’s funeral, and spent a weekend at a cabin in utah.in july, i spent fourth of july on the lawn of a fancy country club in salt lake, rode a horse, went on a seriously awkward hiking date where i was pressured to where a cowboy hat?, had the most fun five days ever in the hometown of katie and avery in southern california, and nearly got kicked out of the hospital’s cafe for stealing refills of vanilla and cherry diet coke.in august, i saw edward sharpe and the magnetic zeros at a twilight concert series, explored san fransisco with my family, watched my brother get married and my grandma dance crazily at the reception, surprised jason at his family reunion in red fish, idaho, took my first college final, and visited home for a few weeks where i squeezed in some beloved lake time, went to a foam dance party, and prepared to go back to byu where i was rooming with avery(!!!!) and living right across the hall from rachael and lily(!!!!).in septemeber, i began a friend-crush on landon, josh, and ally while spelunking in a provo cave, camped in a yurt, ran (well…stumbled) a half marathon in the mud, went to a 90’s dance party where rach, lily, aves, and i were the first to get there and last to leave, landed a job, had an ultrasound in which i flashed the pee-cup-getter, learned that i CAN NOT sit through a full football game and, fortunately, avery can’t either, sat in a fancy suite at the salt lake real game and drank so much of the free diet pepsi, and got really nostalgic over summer term.in october, i watched bruce get baptized, went to vegas with rachael, celebrated my cousin sean’s birthday with my aunt, grandma, and mother in town, spent halloween day as a fifth-wheel (WILLINGLY!), drove for fifteen hours straight squeezed in a car with landon, phil, josh, and brighton to portland, rode around on a moped called hidalgo, and watched the entire kardashian wedding with my sister, mother, and grandma in canby, oregon. in november, i watched the vandal vs. byu game alongside my fellow idahoans, celebrated a faux-thanksgiving with my family in a hotel room in utah because beau and rosemary couldn’t make it back, made the executive decision to hop on a bus early and come home for an extended thanksgiving break in which i ate ice cream every day, and got hit by a car on my bike? boo that.

in december, i fell in an even deeper love with my friends and college experience, had the BEST birthday ever and was completely and totally surprised at a dessert shop, bought a camera (mostly)all by myself!, went to the first presidency christmas message, won an intramural championship (ha!), ate far too much at tucano’s and had the best friend-date ever with lindsay, josh, and landon, made a silly youtube video, said sad goodbyes to josh and landon, didn’t take finals seriously enough (oopsies…), came home for break and did real idaho-y things like shoot guns and eat potatoes, and celebrated the new years by taking kenziggy pop out for a movie and sneaking in popcorn and sodas and getting surprised that my kylie-friend is in town!the end; bring it on 2012.

farewells from elder josh gill.

josh drinks a lot of milk (seriously about 567 gallons per day). he is from colorado but now lives in provo. he has a scooter that’s fun to play around on named hidalgo and he introduced me to the tasty chick fil a. he has a fancy job for byu sports and likes to wear his dress clothes on campus to make that known. he really likes tim tebow, harry potter, and bean and cheese burritos from rancheritos.

…and he enters the mtc tomorrow. and we are so, so proud of him and the decision he has made to serve for two years and leave chick fil a, tim tebow, and his fancy job behind.

i am so proud of you joshy! see you in two years!

p.s. if anyone would like anything like this done, let us know! we loved making it!

p.p.s. we cut out the 5643 times he said “this is so corny…”; ally is a video editing wizard!

birthday part two.

the rest of the my birthday just served as an affirmation that i have some of the best and most sweetest friends in the whole world of wide (accidental fat joke). i feel like i am a portly man dating a superstar supermodel; i have no idea what i have done to deserve these friends but i am so, so grateful for them.

as i was getting ready for the night, lily, rach, and avery walked in and sang me happy birthday and presented me with the sweetest gift ever: 19 things that i love for my 19th birthday. the gift included sweet nothings like chocolate covered almonds, a gift card to mcdonald’s, cosmopolitan, nail polish, and a picture book entitled ‘hot guys and baby animals.’ they know me all too well.

after i had opened the gift and gushed over everything, we picked up ally and syd and headed over to spark–a hilariously ironic and suave non-alcoholic lounge. there we ordered drinks and split food and soaked in how suave and grown up we were (“i feel like i’m TWENTY right now!”).when the last of the drinks had been slurped, we ran down the stairs and shoved our checks at the waiter. i was really curious as to why we were in such a hurry but thought that maybe everyone was on the same cycle? or really sick of me? or the hour my mom had paid for them to be my friends was up? something to that extent.

we then piled into lily’s car, blasted christmas music, and sped off to ‘the chocolate’ where a surprise was awaiting.

when we arrived, i thought things were a little bit weird. sydney and ally were nowhere to be found, the man behind the counter was sheepishly smiling at me, and lily, rach, and aves refused to walk up the stairs first. ummm…okay?

as i walked up the stairs, the first people i saw were my brother and his wife and my friend and her boyfriend…was this some weird group date that i was barging in on? i awkwardly smiled at them only to be met with a loud ‘SURPRISEEEEE!’ coming from the next room.a surprise party.

for me!

the next hour was filled with hugs (and i’m not a hugger), excitement, and complete awareness that i had apparently peed my pants during the car ride over? thanks so much to everyone that helped make my birthday so great (or: thank mom, for paying my friends so well). i love you all more than you will ever know…ever, because i’m not the affectionate type.

so far, 19 is pretty kick-a.