Hello My New Blog

With every new year comes a redefinition of who I am.

Frithos Roadtrippin 2014

These places were in my bucket list, dreaming of one day visiting.

January 2015

Family Time.

Happy Father's Day

A day we celebrate everything our babyboy does for us.

Marina Turning 2

My baby is growing up by leaps and bounds now.

March 1, 2015

Charro Days, family and pineapples

The The fun begins when I arrive. One of my favorite things to do in the world is to visit my family. As it turned out this weekend was Charro Days here and it meant fun was to be had. Only thing I was wrong! There was cold rain in the forecast and it was fierce. Two things kept me from going... One was the cold rain aforementioned and the other was this freakishly sickness I've been having lately. This little thing where I lost my voice!
Why I got sick right before my well planned family trip is beyond me, but I still made the trip. Charro Day-less with no parade and no Sombrero Fest and definitely no Frijolimpics!!! Oh the sadness. Life is just not fair with me sometimes. 
So then we did the next best thing we (family) do best... Eat yummy food (fajitas) and stay warm indoors. I wasn't afraid of the cold... I mean it was only 59° but it was raining and I was losing my voice by the minute and there was only so much robbitusin I could take! I had to face the fact that we weren't going anywhere but our alternative became so amazing nonetheless. That's how we make memories. With family.
My sister Sandra was so nice to let my daughter have this gorgeous dress. It immediately became her favorite dress and who knows when she's gonna take it off now. Who can blame her, she looks so beautiful and I can't stop looking at her either. She most definitely will be wearing it on Cinco De Mayo. 
Even though some plans didn't go as planned on this trip, we managed to make the best of it. Sometimes this happens and we have to adapt. No big deal. I actually ended up having so much more fun this way. I got to be with my parents, my family and eat and make memories with them too, all at the same time. Thank you for God blessing us this Charro Days trip.
Oh and here's the pineapple of my dreams. It does exist! ☺

Now if I can just get my voice back. That'd be swell...


February 26, 2015

Never change who you are

So I have this little problem.  Well it's more like a little BIG problem.  I don't know how else to describe it other than having absolutely no idea how to fix it.  How can one sibling not get along with the other? That's my dilemma right now.  I don't see it.  As the mother of both, I just can't see it. Some people struggle with trivial things that make zero sense to me.  Your sibling is your family, your blood and nothing else should mean more to you than that.  In theory I guess so but in actuality sometimes family means squat. I just can't see it.  Can somebody please explain this one to me?

When I was that age, you know that young innocent age, I was a child.  Childhood was a good time, for me.  it's a fun time.  Innocence and the thoughts of everything around me not mattering much.  It's the best!  I was happy no matter what or where I was.  I was happy just to be alive.  And when I finally got to a teen, an event finally happened that made me "aware" per se, about a certain part of my life that wasn't so great.  I didn't know it then but there was nothing I could do to change it.  I simply became aware of it, I didn't think it mattered or at least the person who brought this awareness to me didn't matter much. So I simply learned and I moved on.

"You live here?"  A "friend" I brought over to my "house" asked me as she looked around in disgust at the small room I called home.

"Yes." I wasn't sure where that question was coming from but it sure made me wonder.  It didn't make me wonder for long.  That was my situation and there was nothing I could do to change it, I thought.  Why was she making a big deal about it?  It was what it was.  The end. I guess she was no friend of mine after all.

People will always judge you or criticize you no matter what.  I believe people should like you for who you are, not for what you have.  That just becomes an extra sometimes if you happen to have both. If you do then you are blessed. One thing is to have and another is to be grateful that you do.  It's a long and lonely life when you only like people for what they have and dislike those who have less.

This is a silly thing really because things change.  Things always change.  The one person you dissed could end up more popular or wealthy or smarter than you.  That one person you turn your back on could end up one day giving you the hand you desperately needed to get you out of your hard place.  Be careful who you diss today.

Comments, looks and whispers and insults are things that have motivated me along the way of my life.  I couldn't possibly have come from lower financial situation.  Yes, I grew up poor.  My only toys were two doll I ended up losing later in life.  I walked to school almost every single day of school and had to learn a second language in a hurry or face being made fun of.  I never considered myself pretty or smart or popular.  On the contrary.  I struggled every step of the way with every thing.  Life just had a thing with me and was a bitch making it as hard as possible sometimes.  That's fine. Big deal. I learned.  I found a way.  I changed.  I became strong and stronger and eventually I morphed into who I am today. I grew up poor but I was rich as hell… on the inside.

Who I am today is who I was then only well, better.  I am proud of who I have become and what I have endured and what I have overcome.  Every struggle you face and succeed at becomes a new stepping stone that will lead you to a better greater life.  This is what I want my children to learn.  But all I have is this story, my story, which I feel means absolutely nothing to them.  Nothing.

I could go on and on about what I went through and nothing will register.  Or will it? Maybe one day. I just want my story to mean something to them for they are the only reason I endured what I did.  I struggled so they wouldn't struggle.  One day they might remember and change their ways.  I'm still learning.  We never stop learning.  We should never stop changing for the better that's for sure.  For ourselves and for those we love, the best of us is yet to come.

February 23, 2015

Talk to Your Kids. They listen.

I am a firm believer in talking to our kids.  Even before my girls could talk or understand what I was saying, I was talking to them. In my belly and as newborns.  Even now that my oldest is 12, I can go into a talking rampage for an hour or so into why she shouldn't listen to everything her friends tell her.  She listens. She trusts me. I’ve taught her how.

I don’t know how I learned this lesson really, my mother never talked to me. It’s just that I love to talk and I learned in my Child Development courses that children’s curiosity need to be fed or else they will grow restless and do the undesired behaviour always. They will either do it with or without you.  Either way, they will do it.  It’s best to be their guide while they explore and learn from their world.

Teaching my children the “why” of things has been such an important part of their development.  There are so many times I’ve heard mothers say to their kids “No, because I said so!”. It drives me nuts!  “Because I said so?”  That's it? Really? Your child with his barely developing brain can't make much sense of this either.

Children want to know why so putting in some 5 minutes of your time to explain the why to your child will save you 30 minutes or more to have to clean up the mess your child created because he never knew why he should not have touched that box with shiny things in it.

I didn’t even know I was doing it until my sister told me I was doing it.  My daughter was a normal one year old, walking and exploring everything around her yet she never broke a single one of my breakables.  I remember a time I went to visit one of my sisters and as soon as I let my daughter loose, I took 5 minutes to explore the living room area with her.  She went to the center table where my sister had a few beautiful, shiny ornaments that my daughter immediately became drawn to.  I showed then to her by holding them for her while she touched them.  She kept saying “wow, so pretty” and “wow mama”.  I told her  “yes, so pretty but you can’t tough it, it will break.  Ok? No no touch.”  How cute, I still remember this like it was yesterday.

No, no touch. I say that over and over again after I allowed her time to touch it and caress it and I let her explore every one of the things while I made sure the item was safe.  All the while she kept repeating to herself “no, no touch”.  It took me no more about 5-10 minutes to talk to her and explore the area until I had satisfied her curiosity and we were done.  She touched, she learned what they felt like and she learned that they would break and she was done.  I walked away and not once again did this one year old become interested in these fancy, breakable vases. Once in a while I would see her pass by the vases repeating to her self "no no touch".

“How did you do that?” My sister asked me.  “You don’t know how many times I’ve had to remove my vases and curios from my tables when moms visit me with their children.  They begin to touch and grab immediately and the moms just say ‘NO!!!’ slap the kids hands and the kids keep doing it.”  My sister had many of her things broken before too and she said you did in five minutes what they could never do.  She had to resort to just removing the items as to not tempt the kids anymore.

By having a simple understanding how a child’s mind works, you can help it develop better.  A child has a strong almost impossible drive to explore, to touch and feel.  There is nothing you can do about it so you just have to go with it.  Show them what it feels like, tell them it will break and then they move on.  Telling your one year old a vase will break probably has little importance to him.  They don’t understand but by just merely sedating their curiosity, they quickly become bored and move on to something else.

I couldn't just simply tell my kids NOT to do so something but had to explain the consequences if they did. 

"Don't jump, you'll fall and you could break your arm then have to go to the hospital and get a shot. Do you want to get a shot?" 
Her little scared face would say "no." 
"Ok, then. Are you going to jump on your bed?" 
"No"

With full understanding of the consequences, I believe it helped my girls make better decisions and choices in life. I've never had a broken leg or a broken arm and here's praying they never do!!  

I have taught my kids all their actions have consequences. Some good and some  bad. With a little bit of fear and lots of love and even more understanding I can only hope they continue to strive to do more of the good in life. 


 

February 9, 2015

The Hypocrite Parent

I want my children to grow up good kids, maybe even better than I was.  Nothing wrong with that. Seldom do we wish for our children to turn out worse than we were, unless you’re into that sort of thing.  But there is one thing to want our children to be successful in life and not do the same mistakes we did, but another entirely is to be a complete and utter hypocrite to the point where we forget all the things we did and loved to do.  We have to remember this: kids learn by what they see and not by what we simply tell them.

The childhood period for parents is bliss at least when you compare it to what's coming.  This is the golden age, you might say.  It’s the do everything I say or else stage of their life and by counting 1.2.3 everything becomes resolved. Well, in theory that’s the way parenting should work. I remember my mother telling me she heard other mothers warn her "However bad you think your little kids are right now, just wait until they are older.”  Soon enough, my mother learned what they weren't lying. What our children learn at their young age of their development, will change the way they see us in the future. We need to begin by teaching our children to respect us and not simply fear us.

What’s the difference? There is a huge difference! Respect lasts, fear doesn’t.  As soon as your little Tim begins to get bigger than you, fear goes out the window.  The counting goes out the window and the timeouts go there too even faster than you can say one. There is NO turning back, what’s done is done and now you have to face the music and deal with the consequences.

I can’t stress enough that childhood is the foundation for the rest of your child’s life.  This is the big one, the don’t screw your kid up stage.  What, how and when you do stuff here is what will matter most latter in life. This not only will affect your child’s future but possibly your grand children’s future as well.  More or less.  Remember, we don’t always do everything our parents did either.

“YOU'RE A HYPOCRITE!!!”  You hear all grown up Timmy say. Plain and simple, this is a parent’s worst nightmare.  To be called out by one of your kids now bigger than you.  It’s gonna hurt and it’s gonna make you cry but it’s gonna be the truth.  What can you do then?  The before and after with dealing with this are both a bit different.

BEFORE YOU GET CALLED A HYPOCRITE:
This is the best time to act by doing the right things.  YOU CAN’T EXPECT YOUR JIMMY TO NOT SMOKE WHEN HE’S A TEEN WHEN YOU ARE A WALKING, TALKING CHIMNEY AROUND HIM WHEN HE’S A CHILD.  This is the time to do things right.  You can’t be a drunk and expect to tell you child — later, that drinking is bad for you and shouldn’t do it. Parenting is about being real and truthful as possible and this is the best time to do it. Kids can spot fake-ness a mile away.  This is the time to be responsible and a role model.  I still remember the way my mom was and the way my dad acted.  Up to this day I haven't forgotten things, some I have, but not those that matter.  I can be certain my kids will not forget the way I do things either.

AFTER YOU GET CALLED A HYPOCRITE:
Enter teenage-hood and things get complicated and sometimes overwhelming or even scary.  So you screwed up.  You didn’t know better and you spoke profanities every other word during your kid’s childhood and now that he’s 10 and his vocabulary would make a sailor blush.  Suddenly you realize it doesn’t look right for your kid to do it or it’s getting him in trouble at school.  What do you do?  “DON’T SAY BAD WORDS TIMMY!”  Done, that should do it right?

It’s what our kids see that makes all the difference.  Before there are friends or BFFS, there are moms and dads. Before there is school, there is home. This is our time to make things happen and make a difference in their lives.  We all mess up, yes I know, guilty.  But the most important thing to do after we mess up is to accept that we did and be a bit more understanding to our kids. It's never too late to start something positive.  I haven't forgotten how it felt to be a young girl.  I didn’t develop some sort of “mom amnesia” all of a sudden and recall only the holy parts of my childhood.  Yes, I was well behaved as a child and not because I say it but because my mom says it.  I was an introvert which led me to have the personality I had but my parent’s raising made all the difference.

My mother taught me by example and not by words. Ok, example, words and a small belt but that’s another post entirely. Remember, I chose to be the mom I am now by watching my parents and deciding what I liked and what I didn’t. Everything is a choice but aside from what my mom said, I learned by watching her. That made all the difference in the world. I'm not saying we should pretend to be someone we are not, but if we can choose to be better role models to our kids when they are young and impressionable and easier to handle, we can have a better relationship with them as they get older. Respect.  Every parent wants respect but you can’t just demand it if we don’t even know what it looks like. The only way to guarantee success is by never giving up and as parents that’s all we can really do.


February 6, 2015

The Second Child

My baby turned seven years old this week and my world stopped for a moment to realize I have done all this before.  Camila is my second child so she was born when I had gotten my mommy-groove on.  Things were not as chaotic as I learned what works and what seriously doesn’t.  (Diaper Genie, I’m talking to you.) I learned what I thought my girls needed from what they really needed. I didn’t baby my second child as long as my first and she definitely had to grow faster to catch up with her big sister.  Being the second child means you may not be as pampered or get all the new clothes as your older sibling, but you're also not as over protected. This part is actually the best part.

The second child.

I often wonder what kind of mother I have been to her.  I can definitely tell the differences in my mothering to her versus my first daughter.  Oh my World!  My first daughter had my undivided attention 24/7 but by my second daughter my attention was definitely divided.  Now I had to tackle two needs and two wants every single day.  I don’t care who these mothers are that say it’s the absolute same thing to have 1 child or 2 or even 3 children.  It’s never the same!  Never.  Sure, it’s not as hard but my attention span can only keep up with so much.  Having more than one child is never the same unless you're excessively lenient with your kids.

With my first daughter I was a young mother… 23-ish so I had all the energy in the world. I had so many hopes and dreams.  I wanted my first child so much and she became my dream come true.  I was in cloud nine with my baby and I was determined to doing everything right.  I left the university to pursue a full time mommy job and I was determined to be promoted to being the best mom in the world! Did I succeed, maybe not but I sure as heck tried my darnest.  This was my best mommy time of my life.

Then the Oh no, my daughter is all alone in the world paranoia kicked in.  What if!  If I die who will be with my baby?  Who will keep her company in the atrocious incidence of me selfishly deciding to leave this world too early?  I figured my daughter having a little sister would somehow make up for that. So I made the decision of getting pregnant again.  If only she was a girl? I thought this would complete my plan of being the best mom to my girl. And she was a girl and I know in my heart it was the absolute best decision in the world!

There was pain.  Somehow my bones had aged so much in those few short years that every time I walked they creaked.  Seriously!  This was NOT a fun pregnancy but I planned it and I wanted it so I endured the pain.  I had suffered from a lower back injury digging up a whole a few months before and I never fully recuperated.  I also blame the epidural shot in my first pregnancy that made my bones weak in that area causing my injury but I have no proof.  So I live with this pain since then.

P.S I have found exercise has minimized my lower pack pain!  This is why I stay active and strengthen and stretch my back muscles all the time.

Anyway.  Long story short, the pretties and feistiest dark hair and blue eyed baby girl was born.  She was perfect and I was in love all over again. She became my new dream come true! I made her the same promise I made to my first daughter when she was born: That I would be the best mom in the world to her.  Sometimes I feel I have slacked off a bit.  My energy is jus not there anymore.  My life has taken a turn on a more workaholic route. My undivided concentration has become divided.

That’s alright.  Having a second child makes you not so uptight anymore.  You can be a bit douchie with your first child sometimes.  Excessive cleaning, excessive pampering, excessive rules, excessive regulations, excessive douchiness all around.  Your child is the center of your world and decide nothing else matters.  This is a big mistake because sometimes you forget to breath, but by your second child you have come to realize this and ease up a bit.  Your second child actually enjoys more freedoms your first child didn’t even dream of having.  Not being over protected means your kids have more freedom to explore and be kids. To play and learn from playing.  My mom had 6 children… I was number 5 so by this time I ranged free almost the entire day then at night my mom would just do a head count to make sure there were 5 of us.  (My little sister didn’t come until 10 years later)

Now Camila is the center baby.  She doesn’t have quite the same freedoms as her older sister and is not so restricted as her little sister.  I say she is in the perfect spot.  She’s like the perfect porridge, not too cold and not too hot, just right. She gets to learn from both her sisters.  And me, well I’m on my third child and I find myself counting heads already.  It’s not that it gets easier or harder, it’s just that you learn from what you think your children need from what they really need.  There is a big difference and it's only with becoming a professional mom with the years that you gain this experience.