Thursday, December 24, 2009

In Memory of My Coma

Today is December 23rd. Today is my nephews birthday and my comadre Ludim. This is in her memory...

I am sure many of you have received those e-mails that talk about different types of people/friends that come into your life. Some are temporary (the ones that hurt you and you learn some grand lesson) while others are forever. Ludim Seja de Manzano definitely falls into the category of forever being in your mind, heart and soul.

I first met Ludim while I was a student at Santa Monica Community College. A group of students were taken to CSUN to check out the campus. It was nearly the end of our trip when she came to our table to say hello. The first thing that stood out were her beautiful eyes and smile. She welcomed us and answered our questions in regards to the university.

It was this same person that gave me a job on campus in her office. From here, an eternal friendship developed. She always had her door open for anyone to come in whether it was in regards to school or personal. She helped many students get into CSUN.

As a friend I constantly turned to her for advice. She always made you look inside yourself for the answer. Ludim had a way of building our confidence and putting life in the simplest of terms.

On September 11th, yes that September 11th...when most people stayed glued to the television with updates about New York, Ludim was diagnosed with cancer. I remember our first prayer circle in her home. Every friend was there and we put all our positive energy into prayer asking God to heal her. Ludim fought a courageous battle with family, friends and her soulmate Tino by her side.

I won't continue on this in detail because what is really important is how blessed I was to have her in my life. I continue to be blessed by having her family in my life and I am passing these memories of her on to my children. May they be blessed to have a Ludim in their lives when they are older.

I miss you coma. Te quiero mucho.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Caught In The Mom-ent

Child.....Every time I went to the store with my grays (and I am not talking about my clothes) I chanted the same prayer "Please don't let me run into somebody I know, please don't let me run into somebody I know." It had been over 5 months since I died those suckers, it had also been that long since I waxed my eyebrows and upper lip. Now I love me some Frida Kahlo but I wasn't trying to look like her. Why was I torturing myself not to mention my husband like this? (side note: he swears he doesn't care but come on.....) I finally went to see Diane at Fairy Nails who waxed my mustache off and reshaped my brows. FABULOUS and I went to see Craig at Floyds 99 in Mar Vista who kicked my hair into shape with some color and shine. I LOVE HIM. Besides the price being great, Craig is great with conversation and just makes you feel oh so lovely at the end. I walked out of that shop with my shoulders popped back, attitude in my stride with the song "Staying Alive" going through my head. I was back...

With me no longer working for a salary (Don't get it twisted because I still work. I just don't get paid for raising babies) it puts things like pedicures, salon visits, cafe lattes on the bottom of the list. I keep busy with the car pool mom, homework mom, girl scout mom, clean house, make dinner and wash dishes mom not to mention trying to be a wife. This is what I refer to getting caught in the mom-ent. Not moment but mom-ent. As all you mothers out there know, the majority of us put ourselves last. We find ourselves in that mom uniform (jeans, hoodie, sneakers and a ponytail) and forget who we are as women. We don't look for the piece of zen, the calm to your soul, the slow breath of bliss. It's not that we ignore it but we just keep moving and forget, we are caught in the mom-ent. Which leads to resolution number two....

For the new year, I will make time for me, myself and I. I will not go that long again without taking care of myself. I will always use lotion so I don't leave the house all ashy. I will get together with my girlfriends for a meal and or drink because they also are mothers. To take these moments is not being selfish but giving us that moment to breathe so we don't find ourselves crying hysterically in the shower or in the kitchen wondering what is happening to our lives. I plan to continue to blog more frequently, laugh a little bit more, take naps and not feel guilty yet still be a wife to my husband and a mama to my children. I also plan to....(here goes resolution number 3) go the gym and get rid of those "lonjitas" aka love handles. I don't want to be a big, squishy mama (as Maite calls me) anymore. But that story is for another time....

But meanwhile...I once again call out to all mothers, don't forget you are also beautiful women. Call your girlfriends for your own "play date." Go have a meal, go the gym or the movies and have a grown up conversation. Know that your children will be fine those few hours you are gone and your spirit will be renewed. You will find a pep in your step and a smile on your face. Go for it!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Bad nina....

This past weekend it was my God daughter's 15th birthday. Her father threw her a beautiful party where my son danced all night until he passed out (not from alcohol but from exhaustion people, he is only two).
As I rushed to the mall on Saturday because remember, it was the week from hell with Xmas parties, school performances, girl scouts etc... (read previous blog). When I walked in, I stopped dead in my tracks trying to figure out what to get her. I had a moment of awakening. Here she was 15 and when was the last time I talked to her? I didn't know what type of music she listens to, I didn't know what kind of books she likes to read. All I really knew was that she always plays sports and was now 15. She was no longer the little baby I held at the church promising to her parents, people in the church and to God that I would be the best madrina. This is where you see the images of me flogging myself chanting "por mi culpa, por mi culpa."
I called my compadre asking for some help. He wasn't. He said she didn't need anything. Oh sure, let me show up empty handed and then really be the nina from hell. I did find out her favorite shoes are Vans. It is now in my memory bank. What did I give her? Cash. I also found out from her sister that she likes to shop. Heck, who doesn't?

Well, I am making a resolution people. I will get to know my God children better than I do. I have already become facebook friends with my God daughter. I intend to get to know her and visit a lot more often. As for my God son, I will ask him what is better for him, phone, letters, emails, carrier pigeon, whatever it takes. I do love them with all my heart and their parents as well. My comadre once said that people move on after you die and they sometimes forget. Not everyone coma. You are in my thoughts everyday. Your picture is in my kitchen because that is where I spend the most time. I talk to you on a constant basis and though I don't see my compadre and my God daughter as often, they are in my thoughts, prayers and most importantly, my heart. This person doesn't forget.

So I make this plea, this call of awakening to all padrinos and madrinas out there. We all took an oath to protect these children, to help guide them. Bring back the beautiful art of communication and pass on whatever words of wisdom you have. Remember, your word is most powerful. Life is short...make it meaningful.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Last week of school should be slow...what the heck?

So this is the last week of school for my girls before the big break. Why did I believe that it would be a slow week? Whatever happened to mom counting down the days of the holiday performance? I and the Mar Vista 7 (a group of moms that belong to several committees from PTA, to book fairs, garden, classroom volunteering and 5th grade culmination) have a hell of a week upon us and that isn't mentioning the Girl Scout events for this weekend....yikes!

We will be finishing 1st grade costumes, spray painting t-shirts for 5th grade, buying supplies for 5th grade to build ginger bread houses (yup, I am making the icing) which is on the same day as the 1st grade holiday party, selling baked goods and school tshirts at the holiday performance and ending the last day with the 5th grade holiday party. FYI, parties include baking and or cooking, serving at the party and clean up with my twins (Gael & my neice Luna) at my side...
And here you thought that piece of material around my waist was an apron (it's really a cape).

Could it be I thrive on chaos or is it that I lost my damn mind? Will my girls appreciate this when they get older? These are the questions that keep me awake at night...

Friday, October 9, 2009

Confessions of a PTA President.....

Yes, you are reading correctly. Yours truly is this year's PTA President. It was pretty sticky in the summer because we were thinking of disbanding PTA. The reasons are many which will make for a great story in the future but the end result is that we are still alive!

I won't let Sarah (PTA President for 4 years) out of reach because I constantly go to her for advice. I told her she is my consigliere (think Godfather - Robert Duvall). Hmmm....will I leave any bloody horse heads in people's bed? Only if they try to get crazy at the meetings. Just kidding mi gente. We have a great team. Chef Melissa is our treasurer and the queen for those baked goods, Dalia and Martita are the VP's and the Spanish translators for letters and flyers and last but not least the always smiling Jennifer Wilson who is our secretary and the good karma to always be around.

Tomorrow is our second meeting. I hope to do much better instead of stuttering through the first one, wow. That was bad.

Any advice? I will take it but can people stop telling me "Good Luck Sucka!"

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Mom, that CD is broken.....

I love music. Just ask my mom. In high school and college, I spent a good percentage of my money on vinyl, and later CD's. I also worked in the music industry for over 12 years and CD swapped with various labels. Needless to say, I LOVE MUSIC.

There are certain songs you hear for the first time and you know it will be on your favorite list forever. You might hear it on the radio like the first time I heard Bonnie Raitt's "I Can't Make You Love Me." In my single days, I would fall asleep listening to the radio, sometimes the songs would meld into my dreams and I would awake asking myself if that song exists? Well it took me a few weeks to hear it again and learn that it was Bonnie Raitt. It was so perfect at the time because I really liked someone that was not meant to be (which was better in the long run).

I have also found music through movies. I love the Guy Ritchie films because he uses really good music throughout his films. If you have ever seen the movie "My Life Without Me" you will be introduced to some great music. I saw the movie over 1-2 years ago and there is a scene with Mark Ruffalo and Sarah Polley in the laundromat. As he sits on the chair and watches her sleep a song is playing in the background. It was this song that I was determined to find who sang it and where I could buy it. Well the credits rolled too fast on cable and I never found it until last week. I recorded the movie on the DVR and rolled the credits to figure out the name of the song and the artist. Zoom to the present, two years later. The album is titled "Come From Heaven" by Alpha.

Excited by my Amazon purchase, I asked the girls if they wanted to hear it and we ran to my room. Yes, I still run on occasion. It was short distance. As the song started, both girls wrinkled their noses and Maia said to me" Mom, that CD is no good, it has scratchy sounds." I explained to them that it was part of the song and that you hear that noise when you play a vinyl record. Well I realized, my children don't know vinyl records. We do have a record player but Maite busted the needle when she was 2 years old and we never replaced it. Caramba! With technology moving so fast, they haven't experienced the joy of listening to an album on vinyl.
Needless to say, I have told Chuy we need to buy a needle and play some great albums for them.

I still have a pretty good collection of 45's (Brenton Wood, Gap Band and Motown artists) and an album collection of soul and jazz artists. Music is much richer than digital and it's the scratchy imperfections that make it perfect. It's this world that I look forward to introducing them to. Chuy, get to Guitar Center and get that needle!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

This is how I roll......

If I were a rapper, they would be called my crew. If I were a cowboy, they would be my posse. If I were an animal they would be my herd, my den or my litter. If I were Mexican they would be my gang....wait! I am Mexican. They are not my little gang but my little mocosos, esquinkles, my adorable clan.

Rarely do I go anywhere without the car being full. To this I refer to my two daughters, my son and neice who we call the twins (Monday-Thursday only. OK sometimes weekends) and usually 1-2 friends for a playdate. Needless to say, the Land Cruiser is full. If I carpool anymore kids I will need to upgrade to a minibus (Like Jon & Kate).

Today for example, I had the crew which during the school year includes our neighbor Natalie. She is an awesome little 6 year old who loves the twins and helps keep them entertained. Well being the first day of school the mothership (me) also had made dentists appointments for the girls after school. Mind you, Maite said today was her favorite day because she started school and was going to the dentist. WOW! May she always feel like that.

Luckily the twins were asleep as we picked up the girls and headed to the best dentist in Marina Del Rey. Once we got there, I was a little nervous going into the office door pushing the double stroller mumbling a prayer to God to be really good if he helped me. You moms out there know. There is nothing worse than a melt down at the doctor's office. Surprisingly enough, those babies behaved. They sat on the floor and played with the whole case of trains I packed. (I also had goldfish crackers as back up and if it got really bad, I had the mighty bribe of CANDY)

What was funny was the guy sitting in the reception area. I just knew he was trying to figure out if all those kids were mine. Well. They are. Whether I gave birth to them or not, they are with me. When I don't have the twins, I am always asked "Where are the babies?" I just don't know what to do with my hands if I am not pushing that double stroller.
So just know this. I will be rolling with the homies (this is where the scene from Clueless comes to you).

Monday, September 7, 2009

Keeping her strong...but she has to listen to me. Carajo.

Maite is my little viking, the chispa that never dies. I keep trying to convince her that at 6 years of age throwing tantrums is not cute. All it does is make me chase her to the room with a chancla in hand. She also reminds me of the Spanish saying "solo borachos y ninos dicen la verdad" (drunks and children speak honestly). Trust me, she has no problem saying what's on her mind. She loves calling me "her big beautiful squishy mama". I told her that sounds like an octopus and that she should just call me her beautiful mama. Ayyyy yayyyy.

I love that she is strong willed, lives by her rules, doesn't let anyone rain on her parade but at the same time she is the one "que me saca las canas" (she makes me get more gray hairs). And on a budget, I can't always get my hair done by fabulous Craig.

She told my sister of a dream she had. Why she didn't tell me, I can not answer. She probably knew that I would start asking way to many questions trying to analyze every part of the dream. I know, I am crazy like that. Back to the dream....

Maite had a boy fish that was her boy friend. Not a novio, an amigo. Remember she is 6. Well this fish told her that he was going to marry her. (I know, what happened to the fact that they were just friends. Ask Beto.) She said no. He said yes I am. She said no you are not. He said yes I am. So she ate him. I LOVE THIS STORY! My hija put that fish in his place.

I told my sister that I hope she always keeps this attitude when it comes to boys. Because we all know, we get "tontas in love" especially the first time. If I would of listened to my mom when she said "I don't like him. He doesn't look me in the eyes when he talks to me" it would have saved me from stupid mistakes and a broken heart.

As mothers we don't want our babies to repeat the same mistakes. We want to shield them from pain and pendejos. As a reminder for Maite, I have written this story into a journal and will show it to her when it comes time. My wish is that she chooses someone that is like her papa.

Meanwhile, I will love my little chispa and keep chasing her with the chancla.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

La Super Nanny came a knockin.....

I decided to take the kids to the LBC to meet their primos for a playdate. All was going well in the park until Maia thought it might be fun to pour sand down the slide. Let me include that my soon to be 2 year old son and neice were on the slide as well as two other children. From where I was sitting, I jumped up and started yelling "Maia" at the top of my lungs. Did she hear me....NO!

I ran over and pulled her to the side and start yelling "What the heck! Who told you it was a good idea to put sand down the slide? Que no ves que hay otro ninos, no piensas? It was when I switched to Spanish that the mother of the two other children came and got her kids and scooted away. Was I embarrassed? A little. Did I stop? Heck no.

I was in the middle of my sermon of using common sense when I was interrupted by some woman with a clipboard. "Excuse me, are you familiar with the show Super Nanny?' What? Oh yeah, I watch the show. (This is when Maia made her escape) She then asked me if I would consider trying out for the show and that if I was chosen I would be paid for having the SuperNanny in my home for one week. For one quick second I considered it until I realized my home would be on tv and damn, I am trying to pull the carpet out of the living room. Also, the camera makes you look heavier and God knows I don't need that.

Needless to say, I politely said no thank you and that my husband would never agree to it. What I really wanted to say was "Girl, don't interrupt me when my Spanish is flowing (because it's when I am angry that I speak Spanish without stuttering)

When I walked back to the blanket my sister in laws were cracking up. They also thought the woman was bold to interrupt a scolding. She was not a mama. If she were, she would never have done that. We give each other the respect and wait until they are finished.

Lesson learned: Don't yell at my kids in public. Do what my mom did. Shoot the kids a crazy look and make the hand gesture of "pau pau" or "ya veras when we get home."

Go Ask Beto....

Did your mother ever have a famous saying that you completely heard wrong?
Well I do....

Once upon a time when I was a young, single Latina joining my mother in the kitchen....(this is where you hear the harp music)

My sister and I were asking my mother a question and she responded "Ve tu ha de saber" which roughly translates to "You should know". My sister and I heard "Beto ha de saber." We looked at each other and wondered the same thing, who the heck is Beto and why should he know?
We asked her who Beto was and she shot us a look that needed no translation. Par de mensas, de que estan hablando?

This now has become a joke between us now. When we are not sure about something, we tell each other to go ask Beto.

And on the flip side.. our dad the beloved Cleto or Cletus as the neighbor used to call day in anger yelled "hoddamodit". WHAT?! We (Lucy and I) sat there repeating the word slowly trying to break it down in syllables. Hod-a-mod-it? No. Hod-amodit. Oh! God damn it!
It was his accent and a couple of Budweisers that made it sound like that.

So we, the Alamillo daughters now use both expressions. Hodamodit is so the children don't hear our swearing and it's not really a sin if you don't actually say God, is it?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Gorda, Flaca, Prieta, Ciega...What's In A Name?

The Alamillo family (including my mother) gives everyone some sort of nickname. My brother Max is notorious for pointing out that the person resembles a cartoon from our childhood. "Doesn't that guy look like the crossed eye kitten that Sylvester the cat teaches to catch mice. Remember, he was always going fffft, fffft?" And in truth, he did.

Let's see...Max was flaco, Richard was negro, Lucy was gurumis. I don't remember what a gurumis is. I will have to ask mom and get back to you on the definition. Yours truly was gorda. How messed up is that? Started me off early with the self loathing of my body. The crazy thing was that these names were given to us with lots of love.

Boyfriends and girlfriends were fair game in our family. My brother had a girlfriend that we called Peppermint Patty. She had the blunt cut, freckles and the sandals. The only thing missing was a sidekick to call her "sir".

My husband got the name "mil usos" (a thousand uses). Get your mind out of the gutter people. This name was given to him by my mother because he is such a handy man. He can tune up a car, unclog a sink, fix a toilet and plant a garden. You name it, he does it. About the only thing he can not do is caulk tile and take me on a date (I am still waiting). Either way, I love my mil usos. His family has given me a nickname as well. They like calling me "la gata" because they swear I was a crazy chuca in high school. Not really people. I was a good girl.

And now we have carried on the tradition by giving our kids their nicknames. My oldest daughter has always been referred to as an old soul. We swear she has roamed this earth before because the look in her eyes tell you so. Her nickname is "mai-mai" and cabezona (not for the size of her head but the fact that this girl is stubborn). Maite is the viking. This name was given to her by our good friend Denise. My father calls her "chispa" (spark). She can be yelling one minute and then turn around with a smile and say she loves you. Both of these names are appropriate since I find myself debating with a six year old on a daily basis. Why can't she understand that no is no? Because while she lives under my roof, she will live by my rules (oh wait, that is the other blog posting about using your mothers sayings). Gael is known by my father as the "vaquero" (cowboy). He finally got his grandson and swears he wants to take him to Mexico and return him when he is 18. I keep telling my father that it is my daughters who will wipe the drool off his chin when he is an old man. Gael's other name is "duende". Those goblins/elfs who come into your home unseen and wreck havoc on your belongings. Yup, that is my little man cub. He has the killer smile that will let him get away with anything.

I am sure you have names given to you by your family. Some of my good friends are flaca, tatu, stinky, chismosa, trollop and nopalero. My sister in law lovingly greets me on the phone with "que honda pinche india." I know she loves me.

Nicknames give us a clue of what they are made of. Which of their characteristics stand out strong. Only those closest to us know our nicknames. It is a treasured secret amongst the familia.

So what is your nickname? Share. Andale, you know you have one.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Estas son las mananitas...

OOOH weee! How long has it been since I blogged. I have all these ideas floating through my bilingual brain but have not written them down. To my 8 followers, I apologize. Let this Chicana get her butt in gear and start tapping away at the keys.

To those who are new, bienvenidos. What's up and welcome.

Today I turned 44. Yup, I can actually admit it. I don't have a problem owning up to the age. It's the gray hairs on top of my head that I am having trouble with. My husband wished "the old geezer" a happy birthday and I came back with the fact that he could get "cash for clunkers." All he has to do is trade me in for a newer model. He is attached to old things (proof is the falcon sitting on the driveway) so I am staying. But chale people, is not 40 the new 30? I have 3 kids not even in their teens yet. Doesn't that count for something?

For a quick second, and I do mean second. I moped that at 44 I had no real career. Not one that I got paid for. It didn't help that the girls were fighting today, the most blessed day. In return I yelled at the top of my voice "Stop it! No fighting on my birthday! What kind of present is this! This sucks!!" It worked. They cleaned their room and behaved the rest of the day. Acting a little crazy does wonders.

I do have a career. Mother. I get to witness all the ups and downs of my children. I am their northstar on their compass. When in doubt, go to mama. I have three angelitos (with broken halos sometimes) that God has given to me. I am also blessed with a wonderful family (Alamillo & Ramirez) and amazing friends that I can vent to, laugh with and create ever lasting memories.

So as my Mexican Buddha husband has told me "The grass is not always greener on the other side". This is true. I have no business cards or a blackberry (even though I am working on this one). I do have people around me to create wonderful memories with stories to tap onto these keys.

The best gift I got? The realization of noticing my blessings. Second? The starbucks card I got from Angie. Chow......(the east l.a. cry that is pronounced "sha au" in a high pitch.)

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The Power of the chancla

The Power of the Chancla.

Latinos are raised on tradition. From meals, to holidays to everyday chores, we are used to doing it a certain way that was passed on from our parents. One of these traditions is "la chancla." If you ask your fellow Latino whether or not they have a “chancla” story, I am sure they will tell you a good one that will bring tears to your eyes .
A chancla is a slipper, sandal, an everyday shoe worn by mama. It is the weapon held high in the air and waved by our mothers when she is threatening us to behave or else. It is the boomerang thrown at the “mocoso” running away after beating up his/her sister or brother. The chancla always hit its target.

You may ask yourself, how do you get the power of the chancla? Know that it is something passed down in the genes and once you become a mother, poof. You have it. Every now and then there are those that must develop the power because it doesn’t come naturally. Yours truly is one of those.

Case in point….when my daughter Maia was about 4 years old we were coming out of the house and there was a cat on my car. I was trying to scare it away but those wild alley cats are tough. So I carefully slipped off my flip-flop (my chancla of choice) and flung it at the cat summoning all my power into the chancla. The chancla went the other direction. Maia looked at me and declared “mom, you don’t have the power of the chancla.” My husband thought I was pitiful. Had this talent skipped a generation? Should I have cried to my ancestors, “ give me the strength to hit the frickin’ cat”? Now how would I scare my children into doing what they were told?

Needless to say, I never redeemed myself from the virginal throw of the chancla. I have become better at hitting my targets (stay away cats!) and my ancestors now smile upon me. Please know this is a secret tradition passed along to our families because those who don’t understand will call child services. In reality it is the threat (the bark not the bite) that gets those kids moving. Those in the realm of the chancla know that it only happens when it is well deserved.

Walk in peace my sistas.

Monday, May 4, 2009

ok people, this is actually my first blog I tested on some family and friends. Happy reading...

Dios Me Ampare

I often heard my mother yell the words “Dios me apare.” I never really understood why she said it until now. I am the mother of 3 beautiful children that I often threaten to sell to the gypsies. Not really. Now for those readers of “no habla espanol”, the phrase translates roughly to “God help me” or in the words of the Carrie Underwood song “Jesus, Take The Wheel.” Which by the way, I found myself yelling in the kitchen as I looked up to the ceiling. It isn’t until now that I find myself constantly saying these words in my head. Ahhh, that’s what mom meant. It was a cry for emotional and spiritual help from the frustration of her children not listening. And now, it is my turn. Personally, I would like to put it on a t-shirt.

I have to be focused on God to help me or else I turn to my favorite vocabulary word “f**k”. And there are plenty of variations, “F**k this”, “What The F**k?”, “F**k, F**k, F**k”and the ever favorite, “F**k Me.” Side note: It isn’t as good as the blogger mom who wants to use the word mother fucker and platypus in the same sentence. Kudos. That one brought tears to my eyes.

And only another mother can understand the “Dios Me Ampare” because it is truly something experienced. And with this, I hope to bring the Latina perspective (or the pocha experience) of motherhood to your eyes. Also, I have a habit of jumping topics without a transitional sentence. Only my sister hears the transition in my brain. Love you Lucy. May you experience laughter and or sympathy for the stories to be told. But know, all is told with “amor.” Love.
After all, isn’t that the solution for this crazy world that we live in?


Wow! After saying I was going to set up a blog month after month, I am finally here. Bienvenidos to my blog.

Here you will read about my thoughts, dreams, "chismes" on my life as a Latina mother, wife and a member of this grand universe. I may every now and then have a potty mouth because if you know me, I can cuss like a sailor. I am working on it. I will also post photographs to share with you because I can and it will give me a chance to show off some skills.

Just know this, it will all be from a positive space because God knows there is enough of the other stuff floating around in this world.

A few things to remember about yours truly. I switch very easily back and forth from Spanish to English or as some refer to Spanglish. I don't use transitional sentences because I forget.

Why the title? A long time ago when I was a single Latina working my way in the world of music publicity, I had a pair of hot red shoes. Life was all about the clothes and the shoes. It still is....but not mine. It is the clothes and shoes I pick up from the living room, kitchen and bedrooms of my 3 beautiful children who are also the inspiration of this blog.

Before I forget....Thank you, thank you, thank you Sarah Auerswald (yes people, the same one that was on La Oprah) for getting me started. You rock! A big Walter Mercado "mucho amor" to my sister/best friend Lucy and last but definitely not least, to my "media naranja" for always believing in me, encouraging me and loving me for who I am. We are great together and in the words of Denise "we make cute babies."

Read on mi gente and hopefully I can give you a few chuckles in your day.

Un beso. And remember "All we need is love"