Saturday, December 31, 2011

Oh here come those resolutions!

The New Year is upon us and with that, resolutions start to rattle in your head.  I will lose weight, I will blog more, I will see friends more often, I will be a better mother, wife, daughter, sister, I will, I will, I will....

This time I am taking a new approach.  I will just be.  I will just breathe.  This doesn't mean I will do nothing and have the world pass me by. What it does mean is that I won't be crazy with the lists. I will slow down to smell the flowers and enjoy what I have.

We are all blessed. Let's honor ourselves and each other.  My request to the Universe is that you receive many blessings in 2012, that you be happy and feel peace in your heart.

I look forward to 2012. Prospero Ano Nuevo.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Coastal America Ocean Art Contest

I always get excited about art contests. Not only do I get my daughters involved but I want to get the word out.

Aquarium of the Pacific is one of twenty participating Learning Centers that is part of the Coastal American network. Their mission is to preserve, restore and protect the nation’s coasts. This organization realizes the importance of teaching and encouraging young minds about the ocean. With this in mind, they invite students (from Kindergarten to full time university and college students) to submit artwork that expresses their connection to the ocean. The student must choose one of the Seven Ocean Principles as their theme.

Winning artwork for each category will move on to the national level of the competition. The national winners will have a chance to travel to Washington, D.C. to participate in the Coastal America Ceremony.

The deadline is less than a week away, December 20, 2011. Submissions can be mailed to Aquarium of the Pacific or it can also be dropped off.

For more information,  guidelines and reading about the Seven Ocean Principles please visit Coastal America Ocean Art Contest

I know the deadline is close but get your little artists to participate!

Disclosure: I was not compensated for this post. I just believe in great opportunities to benefit the Universe.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Christmas is almost here!

Tree: check
Red chubby mariachis sitting on my book shelf: check
The kids Christmas lists: See below (and yes, my Maite the 8 year old has a 2 page list)

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Monday, October 24, 2011

How will you be remembered?

My abuelito, Antonio Alamillo Villalobos took his last breath on Friday, October 21st.  Entering the hospice is depressing.  Hopelessness walks freely down the halls. Senior citizens sit in wheel chairs staring into a nothingness. Perhaps they are plotting their escape or asking themselves how they ended up there and what time will the grim reaper claim them for his own. When I make eye contact with them and smile, they seem surprised that I would see them and not through them.

Seeing my abuelito taking shallow breaths of air through the oxygen mask, his body struggling to stay alive while his mind was on a trip of floating through clouds with the help of the morphine they gave him every few hours.  Physically he struggled, where was he mentally and emotionally?  Was he reliving his life? Was he being greeted by those who passed before him? Did he feel us all in the room.  Generations of Alamillo's sitting around him, praying that he wasn't in pain and screaming for help from within,  praying for comfort from the Universe, praying that he felt us in the room, praying forever praying.

This is not the last memory I will store in my heart. This is not how I wish to remember him.  As a child, we know our abuelitos as those who gives us the coins for the ice cream, the trips to the park and our defenders for justice against our parents.

My abuelito was the last of my grandparents to be alive.  Antonio lived to the age of 97.  I was fortunate to know all 4 of my grandparents and have special memories with each.  My children got to know their great grandfather.

One of my favorite memories was recent.  I came to visit my parents and abuelito and decided to surprise them with pan dulce.  My abuelito who was on a strict diet rarely had sweets but I asked my mom if I could give him a piece of bread. She said yes, so I put the pan on a plate and slid it across the counter in front of him.  He was looking down and saw the plate, looked up at me and had the biggest smile on his face.  He picked up the pan, laughed and then proceeded to wolf it down before anyone could take it away from him. 

Abuelito querido. Rest in peace.

What is your favorite abuelito memory?

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Dichos De Mi Abuela

As Day of the Dead approaches I realize I have not started my altar.  This year there will be a new picture next to my mama Luz.  The picture is of my mama Maria, my beloved abuelita.  She passed away last year on November 1st at the age of 93.

One of my abuelita's dichos is perfect for Dia De Los Muertos.  She would say:

"Cuando ya nos toca, hasta la patada de una mosca nos vamos."

translation: When it is your time to go, even a kick from a fly will take you.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

A MOMent in Time

A MOMent in time is when your children do or say something hilarious, embarrassing and/or surprising.  Either way, you do not want to forget it.

Gael comes up to me today and yells "Mom, you don't have to worry. I found your marbles!"  I respond "Thanks Ga!  Mami isn't ready to check out so thank you very much!"

What is your "MOMent?"

Sunday, September 11, 2011

LAUSD Is The Matrix

I am Morpheus in search of "The One" who has the answers and the strength to fight the matrix that is LAUSD.  The One knows who to speak to, knows who to trust in order to accomplish his/her mission. 

I am depressed and angry.  My husband, the Oracle tells me "Stop fighting it. Everything that is happening is supposed to be happening. There is a reason."  I want to throw my sponge at his forehead.

We face Mr. Smith on Monday. What will he tell us?   When Mr. Smith states that he cares about the students and is making the decisions in their best interest. Is this the point I yell "there is no spoon!"

I am not sure if The One will make it but I will be there. I will put on my emotional armour and listen to the words that are being spoken before I react and I will be wearing a cool pair of dark sunglasses.

Neo, I need I you!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Mom, Can I Shave My Legs?

I don't remember how old I was when I started shaving my legs. I do remember that I started tweezing my eyebrows in high school because I have a picture of me from prom with the "McDonald arches," yikes!

My daughter the tween had been asking to shave her legs in 6th grade and I would respond "Is it something you want to do right now or can it wait until summer?"  She said she could wait. That was until a week ago.  She reminded me and again asked if she could shave her legs. A part of me wanted to keep her my little girl. The baby we called "wolfie" when she was born because she had a full head of hear and hair on her earlobes (which has since disappeared).

She asked me as I was washing dishes. I am always washing dishes. I asked her to wait until I was finished. As she walked away, she said under her breath "I hate the boys teasing me about my hairy legs."  Damn those boys!  How can one comment from the male species make you start feeling insecure.  Needless to say, I put my sponge down and asked her to follow me to the bathroom.

I opened my drawer and pulled out a new razor, grabbed the shaving cream and looked her straight in the eye. "Are you sure you want to do this? Once you start, you can never go back."  "I'm ready mom."  I took a deep breath and began to put the shaving cream on her legs.  I told her I would shave one leg and she would have to do the other. "Take your time because if you nick yourself, it hurts. Are you sure?"  "Yes mom."

I don't remember my mom showing me but I was glad to share this moment with my "wolfie." I want her to tell her friends "I love my mom, she is cool." (who am I kidding?)

She did it. Her legs are smooth and a piece of me cried inside.

 And so it begins...these changes of life. 

Tito, hand me a tissue.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

The Otter Who Makes Snow Cones (or so we wish)

I knew I would draw you in with that title! I will tell you more about the otter later.
I am always hesitant to accept Blog invitations where it states "bring your children." I say this not because I have Bebe's kids but because I am the Kool Aid mom (this time I am not referring to my tummy) which translates as I always have  kids other than my own. Like wolves, I travel in a pack. The pack includes my three cubs and my niece and whoever I may be babysitting that day. After all, I drive the Toyota Land Cruiser and what is the point of having one if I can't pack it up?

Last week our pack went to Aquarium of The Pacific. It was a mommy blogging invitation and how could I say no? In our pack that day was the Ramirez children (mine), Luna and her mom (the nerve of her tagging along! Just kidding seester, glad to have you with me anytime) and Sarah's sons who we had not seen all summer.

Let me start by saying that my son LOVES this place. He wants to bring the otter home because it makes snow balls. We have this idea of marketing an otter who makes snowcones to sell in the neighborhood. We just have to convince Chuy to put a pool in the back for the otter to live in.

Back to Aquarium of the Pacific.  Everyone knows about the sea life and the sea creatures.  Here are 4 things you may not have known that we discovered on this trip:

1.  We met Sitka, a 3 year old Arctic Fox.  We wondered if he missed the snow or was he happy to be soaking up the sun in Long Beach.  Either way, he is adorable and he is located by the Lorikeet Forest.

2.  Bring paper and crayons (if not, they will provide for you).  I never paid attention to the tiles on the floor that display various sea creatures.  You can take home your favorite images by placing a piece of paper and rubbing with a crayon. Voila! Image of the Pacific Spiny Lumpsucker to go!

3.  The Ocean Science Center features this huge globe which serves as a screen.  We watched a film on the Port of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach which the kids recognized.  "That's where tio Roberto works!"

4.  Every now and then if you look carefully, you will spot the homosapien in the tank!  This was the sea creature that excited the kids the most.

Last but not least, please be aware of all the special programs Aquarium of the Pacific has for the families. In September there are three events to put on your calendar:

1. Shark Lagoon Nights (September 9-December 30  6-9 p.m.)
2. Moompetam Native American Festival (September 17-18  9 a.m.-5 p.m.)
3. Baja Splash Cultural Festival - 10th Anniversary (September 24-25  9 a.m.-5 p.m.)

Disclosure:  I was not compensated to write this article but I was invited and I believe any place that is child friendly needs to be shouted from the mountain top!  GO TO THE AQUARIUM OF THE PACIFIC

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

What do you get when you take 8 kids to the beach?

I have earned my mother's medal of honor today.  I put on my super hero cape (it's invisible) and took 8 kids to the beach. 

I didn't lose anyone. I wasn't buried alive in sand.  The kids were awesome with each other. There were no fights. No crying. Oh wait, just one. Poseidon commanded the waves to flip the boogie board and hit my daughter in the tummy. I shook my fist at him.

The only problem were the seagulls who kept trying to get at our snacks.  They pretended they were just cruising through the sand as they made their way towards my Costco bag and when they noticed I wasn't looking, they tried to bust the bag. They are feisty little creatures.  I refused to reward their bad behavior and gave them nothing. If I could have given them a time out on the lifeguard station, I would have.

All in all, we are enjoying our last week of a free summer before school starts.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Music Transcends All Boundaries

I have always loved music.  As a kid, I had a portable record player (you can read post on how I thought I killed Jesus by playing my records...really, read it) and I remember playing my 45's on it.  My first job was typing the school news letter.  All my money at that time went into vinyl (I know, I keep dating myself!)

I worked in the music industry for over 15 years and I had the privilege of working with very talented artists.  Some of them were well known and others were indie artists that should have been known. I am in awe of those who write and perform for the love of music.  It is amazing to me how they write lyrics and put together a melody. I believe that music transcends all boundaries. I say this over and over.  I also love music in other languages. You may not know the words that are being sung but the passion in their voice tugs at your heart, the song speaks to your soul. 

So I will now have Music Mondays on my blog.  It will be my pleasure to remind you of something you have not heard in a while or perhaps introduce you to something new. Viva la musica!

P.S.  I know it is Tuesday but I forgot to post yesterday.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

46 and Blessed

I was not depressed about turning 46, even though it meant I am now so much closer to 50. I wasn't happy that my head is full of "canas" (and still is because I haven't busted the box of color that is stored under the sink) but I was not upset.

My family made me a breakfast that included veggie omelette, potatoes and french toast. Chuy even made a pot of coffee. I am loved! The girls made a beautiful scrap book and they surprised me with a Nook. Why was my first thought: "I wonder what games I should download for the kids?"

I wanted to end the day with my family and in a state of "thankfulness." So we packed up the car and went to the beach to watch the sunset. I sat in the sand watched the kids start with their feet in the water (which ended up with their whole bodies in the water) and just breathed in the beauty.

I look forward to see what this year of "46" brings to me.

Almost The End of Summer...

We (meaning me and my many personalities) are counting down the days left before my children start school. This is the first year my son goes to pre-school for 2 1/2 hours a day. I cherish that time to exercise, read, blog or even nap.

We are enjoying the end of summer with friends and family. What is a great way to celebrate? Well with s'mores of course!

Friday, August 12, 2011

What Will I Be When I Blog Up?

I am part of some pretty amazing blogger groups (Moms LA. Los Angeles Latina Bloggers, Latina Lifestyle Bloggers and Blogs by Latinas) and it was fun reading all the excitement prior to the Blogher conference in San Diego. Part of me was sad and a little bit jealous that I wasn't going. The reasons are simple: financial, school and I wasn't sure who I would be promoting if I went. I am a blogger, yes! What kind of blogger am I? Up until a week ago, I was a blogger who didn't have business cards.

I still feel like a newbie because I am not consistent in my posts. I am like a cold sore (herpes virus) that keeps appearing and disappearing. The only difference is that my trusted followers like my posts and aren't trying to get rid of me with a frozen spoon or Abreva. There is always positive support and comments.

I am a mama, so that makes me a mom blogger. I am a woman, so that makes me a female blogger. I am a Latina, so that makes me a Latina blogger. But these aren't boundaries because I am a Latina mother who loves the arts (musicals, museums, plays), movies, music, food and anything else positive that this life has to offer. So I am a member of this big Universe blogger.

I have written on my children, dichos/sayings from my abuela, life lessons, my inner struggles, my outer struggles. My only rule is that whatever I write be from a positive perspective.

Should I downsize on my focus? Should I be more focused? These are the hamsters in my head that continues to turn the wheel. Will my friends who are more seasoned bloggers take me under their wing and mentor me or answer my many questions and then throw me from the nest when I am ready to fly solo? Or aren't I already flying solo but I want to be within a flock?

What should I be when I blog up?

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

With Summer Come Stinky, Sweaty Kids. Yuck!

When I ask my daughters to take a shower, it then leads into a q & a session. (please note, my replies are in bold because that is the tone I take with them.) Why do I have to shower, I took one yesterday? You ate yesterday and you ate today. Take a shower. Do I have to wash my hair? Yes! Should I put on pajamas? Are you going out? No. Take a shower! Do I have to wash my...EVERYTHING! Go jump in the shower and I need you to scrub everything including your armpits!

I fondly remember the days my girls loved to bathe. Playing in the tub until the water got cold, making them look like punk rockers with the shampoo in their hair. I know I am not making this up because I have the photos to prove it. What happens between the age of 8 and 12? Why does my 8 year old smell like an onion after playing all day? I would hate to think that I am the only mom going through this exciting chapter in my life.

My 11 year old daughter has started to use deoderant this year. She hasn't quite hit that peak of puberty yet but the stinky armpits after p.e. in middle school was too much to bear. But what of my 8 year old? Is it too soon for deoderant?

So I find myself playing 20 questions with her. Mija, are you scrubbing everywhere? Yes. Baby girl (I have to keep the affection going), even your feet, your "pompis" (butt) and your armpits?
Yes! Do you want me to go in and scrub you? No!

My fellow mothers, how soon is too soon? Do I move forward? The funny thing is I was introduced to a web-site Don't Fret The Sweat (www.don' recently. It has expert advice on speaking to your tweens about "smells" and the choices of deoderants. Pretty cool stuff and for the Spanish speaker, they do have an "espanol" section. They are at a vulnerable age and me yelling "girl...what the heck is gong on with those pits?!" I know doesn't help. This whole puberty thing as a mother is new to me. Dios me ampare....

Disclaimer: I was not compensated by Unilever Don't Fret The Sweat campaign but I wouldn't mind a free deoderant (just kidding).

Monday, June 13, 2011

It's not good-bye but until we meet again

Almost everyone at Grand View Elementary knows Melissa Davis. For those who don't know her, let me introduce you to her. She is the mother to Jaden (5th grader) and Luna (2nd grader and Maite's best bud. Melissa is a dedicated mother, wife and volunteer. She is an amazing chef and you can read about it at

At Grand View, Melissa was the Co-President of PTA (was also Treasurer for 2 years), the garden keeper and instructor for the students, the parent who made sugar skulls for Dia de los Muertos, Chef for the Volunteer Breakfast, coordinator for the nutrition fair, one of the parent volunteers for the monthly movie nights and the list goes on.

Amongst this busy schedule, she had a job as a chef for a well known musician and his family and she always made time for friends. Whether it was a potluck, hanging out at the house or going out for some mommy free time, Melissa was there!

Needless to say, Grand View will miss Melissa Davis and we will miss Melissa Davis. Her ability to stay calm, her glowing smile and her dancing to Bell Biv DeVoe (Poison). We wish you and the familia the best as you start a new chapter in Washington. Thank God for Facebook and email, you will be seconds away! We wish you well on your new adventure.

It isn't good-bye. After all, next time you are in Los Angeles, we have a spa date!

Love you mi amiga Melissa. Te quiero un chingo!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Judy Moody - Part of the Chilindrina Squad!

For most Latinas, memories of watching the Chilindrina get into messy adventures with El Chavo and Quico was a family event. This was a tradition where parents and children both got a laugh watching this show. I loved the Chilindrina because she always held her own and her ponytails were not even and she didn't care!

I now share these moments with my children. We love girls with messy hair and crazy adventures!

Maite, my 8 year old is currently reading Judy Moody books in class and got so excited that we are going to the screening next week. The movie Judy Moody and the NOT Bummer Summer releases on June 10th in theaters nationwide.

I now want you to share this adventure with your familia. Join us on June 8th at the Director's Guild Theater in Hollywood. The "pachanga" starts at 4 p.m. (so mamas, allow time for traffic because we live in Los Angeles) as we see la Judy make the most of her summer. We have tickets for two lucky winners and their familia.

Just leave a comment asap and I will announce the winner via e-mail on Sunday!

To give you a tease, check out the website at:

Monday, May 23, 2011

Year of Transition

I'm back......
I have all these ideas for stories in my head but have not put down into writing. Basically people, at the age of 45 (almost 46) I feel like I have been in transition this whole year. Mid-life crisis? Maybe...But I like to think I am making changes for a better me. If I am a better me, than it will make me a better mom, friend, sister, wife and person you run into the street. I won't be the person yelling profanities in my car because you just cut me off and I had to slam on the brakes.

So transitions taking place...

1. I am studying for a new career as a massage therapist. I am going to IBSP in Culver City and I love it. I am facing things about myself and getting rid of fears (like getting naked on the massage table under the sheets--talk about taking deep breaths). This also includes taking tai chi with instructor Jordan Allen. I find when I start my morning with a sense of calm, there isn't a whole lot that can rattle me through the day. Truly I love this journey and will be writing about it because I am now ready to share.

2. I decided to take the Whole Foods 28 day Challenge with fellow mom & blogger extrodanaire (is that spelled right?) Sarah Auerswald. I just completed the first week and I will definitely be writing about that! You can also read Sarah's daily post of the challenge.

3. I am purging my home of STUFF. Remember George Carlin? He talked about this. Well, I am going through it, getting rid of it, giving it away and taking deep breaths through it all.

4. I am getting my sexy back. After looking in the mirror and realizing I was way overdue in covering the grays (because I thought I could just go gray and love it--not so much), was tired of wearing "estrechy" pants and no make up, settling into "what the heck, I won't run into anyone today" or "please don't let me run into anyone today"....I have decided to rip these chains off and get my sexy back. I have all this great jewelry that is sitting in more! Next mission: Buy a red lipstick!

With these things alone, I have lots of material so priorities back in order! Life back in order! Deep breaths definitely in order! I'm back.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Parents beware: Ninjas on the loose

Parents, Padres but especially the mothers/madres/mamas

Be on the look out. As most ninjas, they attack quietly and quickly. They are called ninja "duendes" (elves).

Here is my story (Law and Order theme): I had just cleaned up the room full of toys. Everything was in its proper box or bin. It was one hour before bedtime. My husband was using the computer when the ninjas attacked. The ninja duendes quietly came into the room and the damage was done! Chuy didn't hear them, didn't see them (was it because he was probably on Craig's List? quien sabe) but they left their mark.

Should you happen to catch one and ask them why they attacked your home. He/She will simply look at you and respond "That's why."

Be aware that they are disguised as your children. As a good mommy, I am getting the word out.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Junior League of Pasadena, CA: Programs: BodyWise

For those who have daughters in middle school, please check out this conference that is geared towards them. It is this weekend.

Junior League of Pasadena, CA: Programs: BodyWise

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

My friend…..idiot

You think that by the third child I would have learned the lesson of being careful what I say in front of the children? Not so much.

Maite was about 3 years old and we were driving back from the store when a car cut me off on the road. I yelled "Hey idiot, thanks a lot!" Two seconds later Maite asks me "mom, how do you know her?" I responded –How do I know who? Your friend. What friend? That girl. Which girl? Idiot.

Ooooh, that girl. (think quick Maria) I have known her for a while mija. When do you see her? (think quicker Maria)—Umm, I usually just see her when I am driving on the street.

To this she responded "oh."


It’s not always about winning….convincing a 6th grader

My daughter Maia entered a writing competition put on by the City of Los Angeles. It was part of African-American History and the theme was "From Civil Wars to Civil Rights" and the students from middle school and high school could write poetry, essays that should be one page long. I convinced her to enter it and interview her nina (godmother) Karen. Her nina grew up on the east coast and has some amazing stories which should be a book. Maia kept asking if we had heard anything yet and yesterday I told her that she probably didn't win because we had not heard anything from them via phone or email. (wow that sounds really cold in writing…I was really careful choosing my words mi gente, I swear)

I told her I was proud of her and the mere fact that she went for it, she was a winner. The experience was great and in doing this, she learned some new things about her nina Karen. Though winning is great, the experience is far much more. I told her to continue to learn, write and enter as many contests as she wants and each would hold a different lesson. Her response? "yeah mom…it was cool learning something new about nina…but it would have been cool to win." Maybe next time? Absolutely!

So as the proud mother hen…here is her story to share:

It was a hot summer's morning. Birds were chirping, the sun was shining and it was a special day for one particular little girl. Her name was Karen Lee. Karen lived in New Jersey with her mother. Karen had long brown hair, a perfectly curved smile and beautiful brown eyes. She was nine and it was about the time with ever so much racism. Karen never really knew about racism or the problems in the south. On that particular morning, Karen's aunt Helen was taking her to her grandparents house in North Carolina for their 50th wedding anniversary.

    On that morning, Karen wore her best dress. It was blue with a white lace at the bottom. Karen was helping her mother prepare a shoe box with tender and juicy fried chicken, scrumptious macaroni salad and sweet lemonade. A couple of minutes later, Karen's aunt was at the door saying it was time to go. As they entered Virginia they noticed a billboard that said "You are now entering Klan country" and with it was a picture of a Klan member dressed in white who was holding a black man tied to a noose. Everyone in the car was silent. Karen could feel that the atmosphere in the car was very awkward. She had no idea what the Klan was but by the way everyone was silent, she could tell it was something wrong. The rest of the drive was in total silence.

    As they pulled up to the house, there was a warm breeze, the air smelled of tobacco. Her grandparents were farmers and they farmed tobacco, peanuts and cotton. This was different from New Jersey. As Karen stepped into the house, she desperately needed to use the restroom. She told her grandmother and she gave Karen a lantern and pointed to an outhouse . In the outhouse it smelled of boiled eggs and it was dark. Once again Karen thought that this was different from New Jersey. What else was different?

    Two days later Karen and her aunt Helen drove into a part of town call Rocky Mountain, North Carolina. Karen's mother had given her fifty dollars to buy the grandparents a gift. As Karen was walking down the street she saw a beautiful magenta stained scale that she wanted to buy. As she walked towards the store she felt her aunt was holding her back. She had seen a sign that Karen did not. It was a sign that said "No coloreds allowed." The owner of the store came out and said in a raspy and grumpy voice, "What do you want!" Aunt Helen explained that Karen wanted to buy the scale and his response was "I don't serve Ni***** here in the front but you can come to the back where no one can see." Aunt Helen immediately refused. As they walked away, Karen had to use the restroom. She saw that there was a restroom for "whites" and a restroom for "Ni*****" As they went inside, there was a pungent odor and there was no toilet paper. That day, Karen learned that she was very lucky to have a clean bathroom and plumbing back in New Jersey and that her home and her neighborhood seemed safer than North Carolina.

    Karen Lee is now an adult and she is my "nina," my godmother. She shared a piece of her history which is a piece of African American history with me. History are stories that share so that we can learn lessons from and learn where people come from. I am ever so lucky that she shared a piece of her history with me. I learned that it is wrong to treat others differently because of their color. We all breathe, we all live and we all have a voice.

Monday, March 14, 2011

MOMnesia Moment #1

Moms, mamas, madres, mamasan, mamacitas....we all have them. It is what my husband calls "momnesia." You are in the middle of a sentence and completely forget what you were saying because you see your toddler running across the kitchen with something he shouldn't have or you are looking frantically for the keys to your car not realizing they are in your hands. We have all had them. So I am dedicating a section that I lovingly title "MOMnesia Moment". Truthfully, we hope it is only a moment and that it will eventually get better.

This story was given to me by my Chilena girlfriend who shall remain nameless but lives in Santa Monica and has a daughter in high school.

As most mornings go, mom was rushing daughter out the door to take her to school and then trek in morning traffic to work. It wasn't until she arrived at work and realized that she was walking funny. She looked down and noticed two brown boots but they weren't the same! One boot had a thin heel and the other had a thick heel. Que verguenza! She stayed at her desk the whole day, missed going down for coffee and out to lunch. She called to relay the story and I was laughing hysterically. I was not laughing at her but with her because Mamas have these moments. It is one of the wonderful things we all have in common--crazy stories.

I hope you enjoyed and if you would like to share a momnesia moment, please do.

What was I talking about?

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Dichos de Mi Abuela #3

This dicho came from the lands of the Irish (who have as many dichos, superstitions,Catholics, beautiful land and people like Mexico--cousin!)

She'll never die in her bed

translation: She has done so many things that are bad death is bound to come for her. She won't have the privilege of dying in her own bed (after all, isn't that the way everyone wants to go?)

How it was used:

I was having lunch with some beautiful people I used to work with and we were talking about how different publicists are today and the training that they have. The fact that a mean publicist doesn't necessarily make a good publicist. One particular person came up in the conversation and how she is mean to her employees for the fact that she can be. Really? Mean doesn't get you a place in heaven. This woman who has everyone "scared straight" and that's when my Irish amiga said "she'll never die in her bed." I almost choked on my ice tea and then told her I am using it in my blog.

Don't let anyone say this about you. Keep it positive.


Friday, March 11, 2011

Do these jeans make my butt look big?

At what age do we begin with body issues? When I was in high school I used to believe I was overweight and unattractive. Hence, the boys I liked did not like me back. Now, over 20 years later I take a look at my photos which I recently posted in facebook and what was I thinking? I was not overweight and I was not on the ugly duckling side. Que tonta! How did this start? Was it because my parents always called me "gorda" as far back as I could remember? This was the nickname given to me which I secretly loathed. What crazy insecurities ravaged my mind?

As a mother of two girls and one boy, I am trying very hard to raise confident, secure children. Why you ask? That's why, in the words of Gael. But seriously, in a world where our girls are blasted with what the latest Disney and Nick Jr. stars are wearing, dating, going and using how do we keep our children balanced? To remind them that actions towards others are important and compassion is key. We want to assure them that happiness comes from inside and not the latest smart phones.

I take a deep breath and think about my answers when my 6th grade daughter asks me "Mom, does this outfit look ok? Does it match? Do I look fat?" I answer the question with a question. How do you think it looks? How do you feel when you wear it? In return I get a smile with a nod of approval and then move on to the topic of breakfast.

Well parents, we are not alone. The Junior League of Pasadena is putting on a conference for middle school girls (grades 6-8) on March 26, 2011. The event will take place at Westridge School in Pasadena from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Keynote speaker is Katherine Schwarzenegger, author of "Rock What You've Got." There will be workshops on body image, defense and personal safety. For more information go to

This is a never ending topic and I have only scratched the surface. More to come....

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Where is the mom's easy button?

I am on my second day with some sort of crazy virus that has me sneezing, coughing and just darn uncomfortable. Usually I can feel that tickle in the back of my throat which then leads me to take wellness formula to prevent whatever wants to arrive and vacation in my body. Not this time! It snuck in without warning and pitched a tent in my "cuerpo." Sucio!!

I still had to get up in the morning to make breakfast and lunch for my daughters, get them ready to school and watch two 3 year olds. After picking up the girls from school I realized this illness was my kryptonite and I was out for the count. I put down my mom cape called my sister and asked her to come home quickly from work and watch the kids because I was curled up in the corner of the living room like Gollum/Sneigel with no precious in sight.

This mom may not have the "easy" button but I do have familia you can count on in time of crisis. My sister came early this morning took the girls to school so I could sleep in. I am still coughing up pieces of lung but felt better to sing her praises. I love my "seester".

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Que dijiste?! You said what?!

I love the reasoning of a three year old boy.

I asked Gael why he spilled his toys all over the floor (bits of legos, robots, potato heads and parts, puzzle pieces, cars and trains--think Armageddon people).

His response: That's why mom.

This is new response to the questions that I start with why. He thinks it is a valid excuse/statement. Is it the child version of "Because I said so?" We have laughed at it so much that we now have adopted the saying.

So if you ask me why I blog? That's why.

Dichos de mi Abuela #2

Now that my/our abuela has passed, her dichos seem more beautiful than ever. They are a piece of oral history to be handed down from generation to generation. The funny thing is that I didn't start using them until I became a mother. Coincidence? Hmmm.....

"toda via se le sube el santo al cielo"

Direct translation: their saint still floats up to the sky -

How it was used:
I was having a conversation with my mother about cleaning and how everyone's definition of clean is completely different (mamas, you know I am right) Our clean is to keep scrubbing until we are sure the germs are gone while children and some men (because I don't want the verbal beat down) are to merely wipe that which is visible (and barely that at times). So we came to the conclusion that a certain person's cleaning habits is because "toda via se le sube el santo al cielo." They are not focused or present to the situation.

Have fun using this one.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

The Gift

With Valentine's Day around the corner (tomorrow!), I wanted to send much love to friends and family and my 8 faithful followers. In the words of my father "I love you 9 times."

After being married for 13 years (and dating for 6 before that), I have learned not to get overly excited about gifts for any holiday. I have come to accept that men and women are truly different when it comes to gifts. Men tend to go for the easiest of gifts while my "sistas" tend to personalize gifts or at least most of them do.

My Valentine's gift came early and my husband has not realized it yet. As most marriages, you hit bumps on the road and after a very long time, we had a big freaking boulder on the road. We weren't using our communication skills but our avoidance skills were in tip top shape. I was determined not to be the first one to break out my bucket and spackle (is that right?) to start patching things up.

Friends didn't understand what was going on. How could I be mad at one of the "nice guys?" I know, I began to wonder myself. But back to the gift....right?

In our conversation he acknowledged the fact that with the birth of our 3 child, I stopped working and became a full time mother. He acknowledged (I LOVE THIS WORD) that it was hard to stay at home all day and do what I do. He said "HE COULDN"T DO IT." WOW! I swear I heard angels singing in the heavens. What a beautiful gift. These are the words that I held on to and have stored in the pocket of my heart.

So boyfriends, husbands, lovers...praise your woman for the strong beautiful person that she is. Praise the simple things she does to the way she makes you feel. Give her words that feed the soul and if you can carry a tune, sing her a song of praise (and throw in a foot rub).

Happy Valentines Day Everyone!