Sunday, February 26, 2012

Another Disney weekend...

This weekend we went to the "happiest place on earth" yet again and we had such a wonderful time, as usual..  Many people ask me "do you ever get tired of going to Disney?"...and my answer is always "WHO gets tired of going to Disney?"..I know we don't, and this weekend just reminds me why we never do.. it's just so much fun...
On Saturday we went to the Magic Kingdom and spent a wonderful day with Mickey and friends.. This time was extra special because Olivia finally reached 44"+ so she could ride things like "Space Mountain" and other big kid rides.. she was so ecstatic and was sure to take advantage of her "huge" height.. too cute!


 ...here's Olivia, so proud of herself for finally reaching the big girls' height! She had such a blast!!


 Today we went to the Animal Kingdom, and Olivia was able to ride "Expedition Everest", one of the coolest rides in Disney.. She was so happy she got to ride it twice in a row!.. I was such a proud mom!


... I'm happy to say that Disney will be seeing a lot of us this year, since we just renewed our annual passes for another full year! Best investment we've ever made!  ;)

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Ash Wednesday

Today is Ash Wednesday, which marks the beginning of Lent, a very special time of reflection, sacrifice and preparation for Easter...
We took the girls to church today for our Ash Wednesday mass, where ashes for being distributed for all parishioners...
This is the first time we took Gaby to this mass and she was so excited... I got all teary eyed when she asked her daddy to request that she'd be given some ashes too.. and then she was so proud showing everyone her little ash cross on her forehead...
Obviously she doesn't really get the concept of what Ash Wednesday means, but I feel like this is the beginning of her faith and all of the traditions that I valued so much when I was a kid (and still do as an adult)... I can only hope to teach my kids the importance of faith and God...
Today was awesome....
For lent I will give up:
- Diet Coke
- Negative attitudes
- Late mornings
I will also:
- Be a better mother and wife
- Focus on my relationship with God.

Happy Lent everyone!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

"Oreo"

 Olivia's teacher recently started a "friendship project" with the kids in her classroom and I think the idea is very neat...
The project is about a special friend, a panda bear named "Oreo", who is randomly assigned to each one of the kids in the class.  Each kid gets to bring "Oreo" home and keep him for two days; they get to enjoy his company, take him places and do fun stuff together...
"Oreo" comes with a night time story and a special journal, where the kids get to record their experiences with their special friend, including pictures, drawings, poems, etc...
This has been such an exciting thing for the girls.. Olivia seems so attached to her new friend and she is always looking out for him...
Tonight she gave "Oreo" dinner, watched TV with him and ultimately went to bed and snuggled with him...
Gaby, of course, has also been part of the action.. She asked me to take pictures of her and "Oreo" and she brushed his teeth...
I think this is such a cute idea since it helps the kids expand their understanding of the concept of "friendship" and have fun at the same time.  The kids get to include this special friend in their daily routine and they also learn to recount their experiences.. sort of blogging in a way...
We will enjoy having "Oreo" in our home for the next two days and then he will go and spend time with another fun kid!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Erika's 5th Birthday

My sweet niece Erika turned 5 today and she had a great birthday party...
The party's theme was "Tangled", so everything was pink and pretty...
There were tons of kids at the party and Erika had an amazing time...everything turned out so great...
My sister did a great job in organizing such a great celebration...I had so much fun seeing all the kids play and laugh...
Happy Birthday, Cookie! We love you!!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Fat body, fat mentality?? Or is it the other way around??

Even though I wouldn't call myself "fat", I am definitely overweight and I fit in the category of the many that struggle with weight loss and self-acceptance...
Yes, I love my life and I'm happy with everything I have, but I also know that physically speaking I could be much better off...possibly weighing 40 lbs less would make me much happier... How vane of me!
I have made several attempts at losing weight.. some of which have been successful and inspiring..however, here I am.. sitting comfortably in a size 10 and 180+ lbs...
So I wonder.. do I just have a fat mentality? I mean..there has to be a reason why I love sweets and carbs so much.. maybe I'm just wired like that?
Or.. did the fat body MAKE my mentality fat? I was skinny at some point and I'm sure I didn't rely on sweets and carbs as nutrition.. so maybe I just became like this after gaining weight?
Either way.. I know I've touched on this subject so many times before and although I have come to the same conclusion every time (I need to diet and exercise) and have been lost a few pounds in the process (and got a gym membership!)... I still see NO PROGRESS and I hate it.. My pants are snug, my butt is huge and my arms are big too... even my lovely husband has pointed out that I'm "getting out of control" (how sweet of him.. right?...NOT)....Bottom line... you skinny people out there... what are your secrets? Any fun suggestions?
I NEED to lose 40 lbs this year.. and considering we're already in mid-February, I don't have much times.. 10 months is NOTHING... I need to do this!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Gaby is 31 months!

My beautiful, fun, sassy daughter is 31 months today! wow! Just 5 more months until she is 3 and I still can't believe it..
At 36 months, I will no longer post monthly updates since that's when I stopped with Olivia also..but I sure will post fun pictures of my "baby"..
Let's see... Gaby is 100% potty trained... even night trained and I, of course, couldn't be happier... It is quite to joy to be done with diapers and dirty butts!
Gaby has taken to crafts and coloring and I must say she's pretty good at that.. She has started to color inside the lines, which makes me so happy...
Her favorite movie is "Beauty and the Beast", and she seriously thinks she is Belle... sometimes she even makes me call her by that name.. it is quite amusing...
She talks SO much and SO well... and definitely makes it a point to be understood...
She's not a very good eater but does LOVE sweets and chocolate.. oh my!
Gaby is 27 lbs and 36".. still petite...and oh so cute!
Happy 31 months, Gaby!!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine's Day

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does no boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always hopes, always trusts, always perseveres. Love never fails! (1 Corinthians, 13:4-8)

Happy Valentine's day from our family to yours!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Crazy, exhausted, drained mommy...

Having kids is SUCH a hard job.. it is so exhausting and so draining... and yes, of course it's super rewarding and joyful and all the awesome things people say it is.. but any mom who says she doesn't have days when she wants to run from it all.. well.. she's simply lying.. and YES.. I can assure you this, because I AM A MOTHER.. and there are days where I WANT TO RUN AWAY!!!
Lately, my kids have pressed every possible button and have driven me to absolute insanity... I often question what I was thinking when I decided to fill my life with little creatures... Yes.. I LOVE THEM.. but oh boy, do they drive me crazy!
I'm choking it up to things like "this is a tough age" or "they're just going through a stage".. or even "when they start school things will calm down a bit"... I really hope I'm right because my patience is gone...
Olivia is so defiant and daring.. and Gaby.. well, she TWO years old.. enough said!
I need a vacation... I really do...
Please tell me I'm not alone.. would you?

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Movie review: "The Vow"

I'm a sucker for chick flicks so of course I had to see "The Vow"on opening night...right?.. Well.. I didn't HAVE to, but you get the point...
So... I must say that I was slightly disappointed by this movie, which seemed very promising based on the trailers... I mean.. a hot guy and a pretty girl, madly in love and a dramatic accident in the mix... what could go wrong??...
Unfortunately with this movie, many things were wrong..
First off, Rachel McAdams and Channing Tatum DO NOT make a good couple.. there's no chemistry between them whatsoever, which made the movie that much worse..
The story was cute but it was too slow paced and the characters didn't seem to have any substance... Also, the issue with the girl's memory loss was a bit unrealistic and not very well developed...as a matter of fact, none of the subplots were explored at all...
Yes, there were cute parts and awesome scenes (i.e. Channing Tatum's perfect naked butt shot), but the movie was lacking "something" and I feel like it could have been so much better...
Ultimately, the movie's message is a good one.. basically "no matter what happens, you are who you are and your essence will never change"..
I give this one 2.5 out of 5 stars and I think that's pretty fair!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Gymnastics

I have officially become "that" mom, whose life revolves around the many activities her kids do...I'm always running around and driving around town taking the kids to their fun classes..
Among the many things the girls are doing now, their favorite has become gymnastics..they go every Monday and can't get enough...
Gaby is specially good at bars and Olivia is a balance beam star.. Of course the routines are very basic now since they're just starting, but I must say my kids never cease to amaze me... they are both so determined to do things right and have this undeniable desire to excel at everything they do.. I'm one proud mama!
Also, at her request, Olivia will be starting private piano lessons this week.. we'll see how that goes! Wish me luck! ;)

Monday, February 6, 2012

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Eye witness...

The following pictures are a sequence I took of an accident I witnessed yesterday near downtown Miami...
I saw the two cars crash, the SUV flip and the guy come out of his car.. It was quite dramatic...
I can't believe I was quick enough to whip my iPhone out to take these pictures... 
So scary!!!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Potty Training Success!

It has taken me some time to make an official blog announcement, but Gaby finally did it! She is fully potty trained and I'm one happy mama!
I know in the big scheme of things this probably isn't a HUGE deal..but for us it is quite the accomplishment and it makes us so proud!
At first I couldn't believe it so I had a bit of resistance to give up the pull ups, but one day it just clicked for her, and when she spent a whole day in underwear with no accidents, I knew she was done with diapers and ready for to be a big girl!
I took her to Target to get some cute underwear and she was so proud of herself...
It has been 2 full weeks and I still can't stop bragging...
Silly?  Probably... but a nice step nonetheless!
Go Gaby!!!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Cyber Bullying

Some readers have asked about what Cyber Bullying is, so I thought I'd post a definition to help them out...
Yes, I was a victim of cyber bullying and NO it wasn't just people deleting me as their friend on FB, as some readers have implied...unfortunately it was MUCH, much, MUCH worse than that..
So, to my confused readers...
This is what Cyber Bullying means according to Wikipedia:

Cyberbullying is the use of the Internet and related technologies to harm other people, in a deliberate, repeated, 
and hostile manner.


This is very serious, people! It can happen to anyone when they least expect it!
This has lead me to become mistrusting of my cyber "friends", reason for which I have left some of the groups I was part of and will soon be doing a much needed friend "clean-up" on FB. 

Our changing world...

Our world is changing and so are our morals, our beliefs and the expectations we may have of others...
This makes me sad and confused sometimes.. Some people argue that these changes mean evolution but I often question whether evolution is always a good thing...after all, some of the most powerful empires in history have fallen due to "evolution" gone wrong (i.e. the Roman Empire)...
What used to be "wrong" is now "normal" or just so widely accepted that it becomes reality...
As a conservative I often struggle with our changing world and always fear what will be of our society if the norms keep changing for the worse...
In my opinion, human dignity is at its lowest and the internet has become a double edge sword...
I was recently cyber bullied through a Facebook group, where I was condemned for stating an opinion on a sensitive subject... I won't go into detail as to what the subject was, but the bullying really shocked me and disillusioned me just a little more about cyber friendships and online forums.  Apparently being a conservative is wrong nowadays; stating a belief which is incongruent with today's liberalism is a sin for which you deserve to be attacked...
The truth is, this American society isn't invulnerable... on the contrary, it's a weak society that continues to decay with the passing of time... People have no self respect, no compassion and no limits...This excessive liberalism needs to stop and people need to realize that some things will always be "wrong"...
I need to be able to teach my kids about a life of dignity, self-respect and high moral standards...