Tuesday, February 28, 2012

My Favorite Things this Month - February

1. Broccoli Egg Breakfast. When I'm sitting in a Dr's lobby, I browse through the magazines (usually home and garden not gossip.) and look for recipes to rip and take home with me. John gives me a hard time every time he's with me. I tell him, I'm not ashamed for taking them, besides if I don't someone else will and if I don't, they'll just throw the magazines away taking with them amazing recipes. So, I found this one and I gave it to John to make over breakfast and walla! Alright, no surprise if you, reading this, eats broccoli for breakfast but we never did before. It was amazing! We couldn't stop talking about it the entire weekend.

2. I Survive...Beyond and Back. This is a TV show, I can't recall which channel but it is stories told by people who have had a Near Death experience. Let's just say that there hasn't been an episode yet, we haven't cried. Heaven and Hell are very real. Everyone who has had a NDE have change their lives dramatically. They are no longer the same person they were before and not afraid of dying in fact they can't wait to die.


3. Sneaky Chef. John took out this book to get more ideas to change our daughters menu and I have to say that it is pretty good. The only negative thing is that you have to prep a lot before you start cooking. I'm into shortcuts when I cook, John enjoys spending his weekends in the kitchen but overall it has great recipes! Our girls enjoyed every single thing we cooked out of this book.




4. Poppy Seed Dressing. I love this dressing! It has become my favorite after Honey Mustard. I have Poppy dressing with Lettuce, Strawberries, blueberries, cheese and croutons and walla. This dressing rocks!

Loneliness Vs. Aloneness


"Solitude makes us tougher toward ourselves and more tender towards others." - Friedrich Nietzsche

Tonight, I acknowledge out loud that I do need alone time. I long for that dark corner to cry my heart out. Whoever might be reading this for some odd reason, don't feel sorry for me, in fact, this is pretty normal stuff from someone who is grieving. Actually, once I acknowledge it, someone else acknowledge it as well. Pretty tough to do but also liberating to acknowledge you do need help and is ok. I'm not a misfit, but someone in pain.

So, today we learned the difference between loneliness vs. aloneness and here it is:

"For a person to choose or to accept being alone seems to make others uncomfortable. We often judge the person to be "odd" or "strange."

"...because being alone can allow us to experience the pain and sort out the buried emotions without distraction."

I put myself in the aloneness category.

Loneliness
  • Loneliness can be very painful and destructive.
  • Loneliness can be an unconscious, self imposed isolation.
  • Lonely people often blame others for not seeking them out.
  • Lonely people often feel incomplete without another person's input.
  • Lonely people often think they are boring and undesirable.
  • Lonely people are too secure with old habits and usually don't wish to try anything new.
  • Lonely people may feel they are being controlled by circumstances or only another person can remedy their situation. They often fear responsibility.
  • Lonely people sometimes feel they do not deserve the interest and even the love of others.
Aloneness
  • Choosing to be alone can be a positive life-giving experience.
  • To be alone can be a choice that has been well thought out.
  • People who are comfortable with being alone soon realize they can reach out at any time when in need.
  • Being alone can force us to learn our own self worth.
  • People who can be alone are usually willing to experiment with new thoughts and activities.
  • People who enjoy being alone can often accept full accountability for their actions.
  • Those who are able to be alone often realize that such negative feelings are self-generated. Their egos are healthy enough to know they are loved and lovable even when they are not "with" others.
I think that choosing to be alone is great to silence the mind which can take a lot of practice but to also listen to His voice and find healing. My grieving facilitator gave me this place to consider and another that I just can't find the website, it's call Mt. Carmel in Lewisville.

http://montserratretreat.org/

So, I keep moving forward in hopes that one of these days, I cry and hurt less.
                                                                 

Monday, February 27, 2012

OK, Mami!

Everyday, I tell my girls that I love them, however, I get different responses from them:

Me: I love you Sofia!

Sofia: I love you Mami! (gives me a big smile, hug and kiss.)

Then I turn around and do the same to Raquel:

Me: I love you Raquel! (I repeat myself about 3/4 times) Then finally she answers.

Raquel: OK Mami. (She doesn't even look at me! I take it as an acknowledgement that she heard me.)

I think is hilarious! Both of my girls are so different and I love them just same.

I'm blessed.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Happenings...

Here's a little of what's been happening with Sofia and Raquel...

Raquel loves giraffe's, sleeps with them and well, poses with them.

Raquel and Sofia both busy cooking something for us. You should see what play-doh taste like after they are done cooking with it. 

This dollhouse is a hit!

The results of a home when no ones watches TV. A complete mess! 

I bought this $1.99 house box for them to keep their individual crayons and markers so there wouldn't be anymore crying about who they all belong to and to personalize them, we colored them, wrote their names on them and even put stickers on them.


Sometimes there are 4 people cooking in our kitchen instead of one. The girls come from behind and start cleaning up the mess...or finishing up the mess.


Raquel wastes nothing! 

Having the time of their lives! 

Sofia is the type that as soon as she hears the slightest noise in the moring she gets up and makes herself comfortable in our bed...but not without her buddies. 

Sofia tracing and learning her letters! She's catching on really fast and already writing her name. I'm not waiting on teachers to teach my babies, I believe it's my job to take the lead.

Raquel wants to do everything Sofia does and her tracing is pretty good!

Raquel had a visit from Ariel today at lunch.

and Jasmine came later. 

Laughing together! 
video

Crazy Doll Dance
video

Crazy Dance Style!
video

Five for Friday - Adaptation


1.What’s a film, adapted from a book you liked, that was as good as (or better than) its source material?

Pride and Prejudice (Colin Firth's) I loved that they included every detail from the book to this series. My favorite version so far.



2.What’s a good film based on a book you disliked?

 I can't think of any book that I have disliked; normally, I choose books based on content and reviews.


3.What film, adapted from a book you liked, was horribly disappointing?

I find myself in the minority when I disliked Sense and Sensibility (Kate Winslet). They need to re-do this one.


4.What book, not yet made into a film, would make a really good film?

Any book from Paulo Coehlo's. He's genious writer!


5.What’s a book you’ve read because you liked the film that was based upon it?

Harry Potter. My husband made me.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Grief Class - Week 3

I can't believe I'm still showing up to this class. These people are wonderful and so understanding that grieving takes time. Therefore, today, I want to share what I learned today:

When we are reaching out to the bereaved it is often common to feel helpless. It is sometimes hard to know what to say that might prove comforting to the bereaved person. Often in our discomfort we fall back on cliches. While well meant, they are often not helpful and sometimes anger producing for the grieving person.

I'll share a few:

PLEASE DO NOT SAY:
  • I know just how you feel
  • Time heals
  • Think about how happy he is in heaven
BECAUSE:
  • We cannot truly know what another person feels.
  • Time alone does not heal the pain.
  • While the bereaved may well believe in heaven, the pain of missing that person is still very real.
SAY INSTEAD:
  • This has to be a hard time for you. Does it help to talk about him?
  • We cared about him too. Can we talk about him?
  • Grieving people have told me it helps to talk about the person who died.

PLEASE DO NOT SAY:
  • It will take two or three months to get over your grief.
  • Your grief will lessen in time.
  • You need to get on with your life.
BECAUSE:

These types of statements put limits on a person's grief. Each of us needs to grieve in our own way and in our own time.

SAY INSTEAD:
  • I hope others are not trying to hurry you through your grief.
  • This must be a very hard time for you.
  • I have heard that each person grieves in their own way and in their own time.

PLEASE DO NOT SAY:
  • God needed him in heaven.
  • It was God's will.
  • God does not give you more than you can handle.
BECAUSE:

These statements assume that we know God's will.

SAY INSTEAD:
  • It must be hard to understand why these things happen.
  • Sometimes these things are just not fair.
  • There is no way to justify why this happened.
NOTE: True support does not mean that we are there to cheer the person up. Rather, we are there to be present to the bereaved. The gift of listening is powerful. Many bereaved people need to talk about the death over and over again. Other times the bereaved may need to be quiet. Allow for the silence. Your presence alone can be comforting.

True effective support is not dependent upon how much we say but rather on our presence and how effectively we listen.

5 Things About Me Today

1. I love wearing heels. But I hate wearing heels that give me blisters! How to know which shoes not give you blisters is beyond me. For the last three months, I have been suffering from this aftermath.

2. I worked at my first Wine Gala event this past Saturday night, this the reason why I had blisters, I suppose. At any rate, Everyone tells me it was better than last year, even though if you work on event, one doesn't realize how bad or how great the event is going until is over. We received rave reviews. I brought tons of wine bottles home with me. I have decided on not volunteering next year, unless I'm begged.

3. John and I had our Retrouvaille post session this Saturday and we had a full room of couples, which is great. However, it pains me to see when only one spouse is able to make it.

4. I'm trying to cut down on my coffee intake to two days a week. It is hard when John makes coffee on the weekends and I must practice restrain. sucks.

5. I need to research on how Chihuahua's mate because Molley and Billy don't seem to get it right. They seem close but then the window of opportunity closes and we must wait until it happens again.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Movies We Watch

Movie: The Help

"You is kind. You is smart. You is important". This movie is set during the 1960's civil right movement era, in a Mississippi town where having a black maid was the norm, treating them like second class citizens was how they treated African American citizens. The South could not let go of their prejudices and allowed this racist behavior to continue. This movie is about a young white woman inspiring to become a writer and to do so, she had to find a provocative subject to write about therefore she sought out the help from the black maids to talk about their experiences good or bad, but mostly bad treatment fro white families. I cried at the way whites treated blacks. I cried at the love the black maids had for the white babies they raised. Yet, their courage to face adversity in their lives is to be applauded.


Five Stars and my favorite to win an Oscar this year.



Movie: Kung Fu Panda II


A peacock is out to conquer China and stop Po from stopping him. This time, we learn more about Po's past, where he came from and what happened to his parents. Po still clueless to danger in front of him. This is a funny sequel. 


Three Stars.








TV Series: Downton Abbey


Lady Mary said yes to Matthew Crawley!!! And that's how Season Two ends. However, John was done having any sympathy for John Bates who now looks to spending life in prison for allegedly killing his wife. Sir Richard is no longer engaged to Lady Mary and very well could expose her secret to the entire country but who cares! She's got Matthew and unfortunately, Ms. Swire is dead as well as William. I don't know when Season three begins but I know it is not soon enough. I am going to watch this season over again! It was Spectacular!


Five Stars!!!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

A Prayer


Rite of Passage:

Father,

I once knelt before you piece by piece in dire need to lean on you.
I prayed for you to fix me, You didn't. I was still in pieces so feeling all alone,
I decided to fix myself. I'm here today, before you my pieces all together.
I made myself stand up again.

Thank you, Father, for giving me what I really needed; the will, at last, to
cause myself to heal, the courage to stand alone and the wisdom to know
that I never was.

Amen.
(From A Mortal on the Mend)

Valentine's Day

My take on Valentine's day and why I don't celebrate it.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Happy 4th Birthday Sofia!

I am as tired as I was when I delivered my baby Sofia four years ago today and I'm looking forward to spending more tiring days taking care of her! Thank you Lord!

Sofia has been asking for the Jasmine doll from Aladdin and after searching everywhere only the Disney Store at Stonebriar (Frisco) had it. So off we went on Saturday and as much as I hate malls, I had no choice but to go. They loved it. Disney Store employees made Sofia and Raquel feel special after they found out we were there to purchase Sofia's birthday present. They gave her a birthday hat and sprinkled pixie dust over their heads (my daughter's literraly gravitated from the ground just from the excitement of having pixie dust.) Then we headed towards the Caroussel. We couldn't buy the tokens fast enough.





John likes mall food. I hate it. So, we decided to break our routine and eat at the mall. After 20 minutes, John and I couldn't wait to get out. The place was too noisy and way too many people. We missed being home having dinner. 


Sofia and her birthday present. They go everywhere Sofia goes. 

Sofia excited about all the presents she got. Thank you Libby and John!


 Her smile and happiness makes it all worth it!
 


video


video

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Reasons Why I'm Different

1. I'm not into designer purses. I do not understand the big hoopla about purses and have never come to understand why women go crazy about them. All I need is my lip gloss, drivers license and credit card.

2. I'm not into manicure's. I'd rather bite my nails than spend a fortune every month. Besides with all the cleaning I do around the house it would be a waste of my money.

3. I'm not big about keeping with the Joneses just keeping my yard clean and neat is sufficient enough. I do like to, sometime in the future buy a nice decorative frame or two, or three for my empty walls in my house but with all the medical bills, we must prioritize.

4. I will be very happy wearing jeans and a t-shirt every day of my life.

5. I'm no longer concerned of showing off the type of car I drive. I'm only concerned on paying off my car bill and keep it well maintenance.

6. I'm against feeding children fast food. Yuck. I think it is easier to start when they are very young on greens and not pizza.

7. I'm not a smart phone user, rather, a flip phone user and can you believe I'm still surviving! Shocking! I survived the 80's and that's enough.

8. I'm not afraid of cutting my hair in any sort of style.

9. I'm a proud to be pro-life!

10. I have never like malls. Parking sucks and they are too crowded.

11. I don't believe on the birth control pill.

Whitney Houston

John and I were stunned when my in Laws out of blue, (today) blurred out, "hey, what do you guys think about Whitney Houston dying?" John and I had no clue she passed on the Lord yesterday since, we don't turn on our TV on weekends.

I have been reading news she was to perform at the Grammys and even though, I have stop watching the Grammy's a long time ago, it was nice to hear Whitney Houston was again singing and out of her addiction after all, those who grew listening to 80's music couldn't escape her beautiful voice on the radio. She was different from the others; she was not like the rest who were out there to shock the world; she used her talent and voice to influence those in her community; she was indeed a lady.

We all make mistakes in life, those who say they don't are bigots and Whitney tried her best to kick her addiction. I pray the Lord has her in her mercy. Thank you for beautiful voice. (I still have her/45's)

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Grief Class - Week One

Tonight, I found myself sitting in a room with about 11 other people who are also grieving  and listening to their stories was even tougher. When it came to my turn, I wanted to say "pass," since that's what I have been doing for the last year and half, I remember telling my friend Patricia that I didn't want to talk about it every time she asked me how I was doing. But after watching how much courage they had in telling their stories it just pushed me to say mine. It wasn't easy and I'm not even sure whether or not I will continue with this class but I'll take it week by week.

I may look like I'm happy, running, jumping, shopping and doing all the normal things people who are not grieving do every day, at the end of the day, I am still trying to make sense of things, I'm trying to get myself out of the dark cave.

There are days I find myself in denial, then I'm angry, then I'm happy because I choose to ignore everything inside of me, then I entered denial again and the cycle repeats itself over and over again.

I felt hopeless tonight and this is my feeling for today. Hopeless. And it is neither right or wrong. It is just my feeling.

But today, I want to share the "Mourner's Bill of Rights" by Alan Wolfelt, Ph.D. in case anybody is feeling sorry for me. Don't! Instead pray for me.

Here it is:

1. I have the right to experience my own unique grief.
2. I have the right to talk about my grief.
3. I have the right to feel my emotions.
4. I have the right to physical and emotional limits.
5. I have the right to "griefbursts." (this happens to me a lot.)
6. I have the right to make use of ritual.
7. I have the right to embrace my relationship with God.
8. I have the right to search for meaning.
9. I have the right to treasure my memories.
10. I have the right to move towards grief and heal.

At the end of the class, one of the facilitators call me over and gave me a book called, "Don't Forgive Too Soon. Extending the Two Hands That Heal." I told her I have many "grief" books I haven't even begun to read because they just depressed me even more but that I would consider this one only because it looks colorful and has pictures inside! She was very nice.

Alright, so right now I'm feeling like going back to denial. Good night.

Superbowl 2012

I have predicted the Superbowl winner for the 5th year in a row and this year was no exception. I don't like Brady therefore, my money was going for a Giant win and thankfully they didn't disappoint. We spent Super Bowl Sunday with the Cash's where we could all cheat on our family diets. Both Hollis and Andra are looking good! Keep it up guys!

I loved the Madonna Halftime Show, she took me back to the Vogue and Like A Prayer days, she was amazing! Even though I don't agree with her politics or her plastic surgeries, she's still great performer.

They are super cute! 

I need to make sure that when I dare to let people take pictures of me next to the Red Queen, I'd better have make up on next time!