It’s my birthday!

Well at least for another hour (when I started writing this) it is. I turned 32 today and surprisingly with everything going on, I had a successful last minute get together, was able to finally get my pedicure, had waaaaay too much cake ended up getting some mangonada, actually I got waaaay too much mangonada and now I feel overstuffed, oh and I was treated to breakfast and coffee while I had to do school work, got a couple of pairs of new sunglasses, and my dear William gave me a duty free day and took care of Kobi all day (to include diapers, feedings, naptime and bedtime rountine)! All I did was play with her, hold her a few times and push her in the cart. It was an extra added surprise! 

I’m 32, married, have a beautiful little girl I get to help raise and one in heaven, I own my home, and I pretty much have my Master’s degree and yet I am just now beginning to believe that I am capable of the things I can do, and I am just now starting to let my light shine because hiding has been hard and tiring and I’m done with it! I’m ready for this new season, this God season, with all its grace, favor and love! I’m ready to walk into all that God has for me; like for real this time! I’m ready to be free and relax a whole lot more and worry a whole lot less. It’s going to be a new adventure and I have an exciting expectation! 

Thank you for all the well wishes today, and many blessings to you!!

Make A Note Monday: Sometimes You Just Gotta Rest

As the school semester continues to want more and more of my time and energy I have realized that sometimes I just gotta rest. And even though there are things that need to be done it doesn’t mean that I have to work on them every moment of every day…

Don’t be afraid to take a moment to catch your breath especially if you are feeling overwhelmed with your current situation. Maybe you can’t take time to go do something elaborate for the weekend but maybe you can take a few minutes and walk around the block or go workout for an hour or meet someone for coffee or sneak away on your back porch with a cup of tea…

Whatever you do just know that the paper or project or presentation you’re working on will still be there when you get back and it’s okay to take a break… That’s what I have been trying to do on the weekends since school started. It may not be both days but I try and take a day where I don’t stress about too much work and then do something fun… And like always the work has still been there but when I tackle the work the next day it’s less overwhelming and it still gets done on time.

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A random find in AL this past weekend.

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We went walking while visiting some friends in Ohio.

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I went and watched a play in Nashville with a friend.

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Having fun with friends in Nashville.

Make A Note Monday: Things We’re Not Suppose to Say…

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Like I said before I find great advice anywhere… I read a lot of different blogs. This information actually came from Tia and Tamera’s official website blog and it was advice that one of their single friends gave to them and other well meaning married readers on what not to say to their single friends… I found it to be helpful for me as I am no longer single and don’t want to make mistakes that can be avoided or put my friends in somewhat uncomfortable situations. I also found it to be very funny and wondered if I had thought the same way when I was single. I hope that you can find the information that was provided to be helpful to you in some way or another. The blog was written by their friend who goes by the name of Andrea… so here it is, 9 things we should not say to our single friends…

Things Your Single Friends Wish You’d Stop Saying To Them…

1.) “You’re such an amazing person. I don’t understand why you’re still single!”

My dear, sweet friends have the best intentions when they make this statement. They think they’re giving me a compliment. My friends love me and can’t imagine why some strapping stud hasn’t scooped me up by now. Thank you, friends, for thinking that I am amazing. Really. I TOTALLY appreciate it! But I’d like to know what on Earth that has to do with my relationship status? Some of the best human beings I know are still single. If being a good person is directly correlated to being in a relationship, wouldn’t all the bad people in the world be single? Haven’t we all met some downright awful people who are blissfully coupled up? And what’s so bad about being single anyway? Some of us actually enjoy it. You might be thinking, “That girl is in denial! Nobody likes being single!” But if I’m being honest, I truly enjoy my singlehood. I like not having anyone else to consider when making big decisions. I crave alone time. I love being able to go wherever I want, whenever I want and with whomever I want. I’ve worked hard to get to this place. After my last heartbreak, I decided to take some time to get my stuff together. I felt like I had been obsessing about one guy or another from the time I hit puberty until well into my twenties. After years of focusing on the men in my life, I decided it was time to focus on myself. I dug deep and tried to figure out why I always picked the wrong guy and why I allowed myself to get into a pattern of unhealthy relationships. I decided to focus on my relationships with God, family and friends. I worked on my goals and dreams. I’m so grateful for this time of self-discovery. For those of you who are struggling in your singlehood, I encourage you to take full advantage of this time in your life. Figure out what makes you happy. Identify your strengths and weaknesses. Spend time with your loved ones. Volunteer for worthy causes. Move forward with your dreams. It’s time to start being grateful for your single life instead of focusing on what you don’t have. Our married and coupled up friends can help this process by celebrating our singlehood instead of treating it like bad place we need to hurry up and get out of. We know you mean well, but next time please stop the sentence at, “you’re such an amazing person” – then tell us how hot we are 🙂

2.) “How’s your dating life going? You seriously haven’t met ANYONE?”

Define “anyone”. Haha…Does the grocery store clerk who used his last name (Hung) to describe his male anatomy and then asked if I want him to be my papacito for the night count? What about the guy I went on a date with that just stared at me all night with a creepy serial killer look? Oh how about the guy who hit on me at the car wash? We were actually having a great conversation and about to exchange numbers until he got a call…FROM HIS GIRLFRIEND. Yes, my loving friends & family, I’ve met lots of people, and not all of them have been crazy. Some just don’t work out. I still have hope that there are some awesome men out there and when I do meet someone special, I will let you know. I promise! I’ll scream it from the mountaintops, tweet, update my Facebook status and post a pic on instagram. You’ll know. Believe me. Please stop starting our conversations by asking about my dating life. Ask me about what’s going on in my life. I’ll have lots of fun and exciting stuff to fill you in on!

3.) “Maybe you’re just too picky”

Aaaaand maybe I should punch you in the face? Okay, okay I’m just joking and not condoning violence here, but if I hear this one more time I might actually punch someone in the face…or at least give them a really dirty look! I am not picky. I am selective. There is a difference. According to Dictionary.com, “Picky” means “extremely fussy or finicky, usually over trifles.” Trifles are trivial or insignificant things. I am not concerned with trivial things. I don’t care what color his hair is, how much he can bench press, or what car he drives. I care most about a man’s character and values. It’s okay have preferences, but I encourage you to take a look at the list of things you want in a mate. If any of the characteristics on your list are trivial, maybe it’s time to reevaluate your priorities. I’ve made bad dating decisions in the past. Surviving those experiences brings wisdom. There is nothing wrong with making wise decisions. I’ve earned my right to be selective, to choose carefully. So have you! We need to make good dating choices ladies because forever is a LONG time. We don’t want to end up married to a bad decision.

4.) “OMG I think I just met your husband! He’s perfect for you!”

My friends are amazing. They are always on the lookout for my man (I’m lookin’ at you Tamera Mowry-Housley). They are happily married and desperately want that kind of happiness for me too. I love them for it. I do. But this statement scares the heck outta me! Husband? Already? Can I please meet the guy before we start calling him my husband? I’m all for being set up. Bring it on! It’s a great way to meet new people. It’s fun and exciting. But, please don’t call him my husband, unless you want me to run as fast as I can in the opposite direction. We know all you married friends want us to join you in the wedded bliss club, but please go easy on the “perfect guy” talk. It’s a lot of pressure for the poor fella! What if he doesn’t live up to our expectations? What if we don’t see what you see? What if we really like him and because you planted the husband seed, we start watering it and it grows and grows. Before you know it we’re planning the perfect wedding in our heads before our meal even arrives…or so I’ve heard 😉 We appreciate you keeping an eye out, but please proceed with caution.

5.) “I can’t wait until you get married and have kids. You have NO IDEA how hard life can be.”

I’ve had some exhausted and stressed out friends say this to me and it was one of the most brought up statements that bothered other single gals the most. We know our mom friends are going through a lot and don’t mean to sound condescending, but we can’t help but be offended. It feels like they are saying that the things we are going through don’t matter because they are not as important as being a wife and mother. Again, that might not be what you mean, but it’s how we take it. I completely respect their positions. Being a wife and mother are very important and they’re right – I have no idea how hard it is to be married and adjust to having a man around ALL THE TIME. (I’m praying for a husband who travels a lot. Haha!) I don’t know what it’s like to hold a precious little one in my arms and be responsible for making sure that little person becomes a God-fearing, respectable member of society. I can’t imagine the pressure they must be under and I’m here, as a friend, to help alleviate any of that stress. On the flipside, they don’t know what it’s like to have my demanding job, or the stresses of my family and my life. We’re all friends here right? We need to support each other. It’s not a competition. We’re not trying to win a medal for who lives the hardest life. We all have different challenges. Let’s try to be more compassionate about these challenges and build each other up. Girlfriends unite! Woo hoo!

6.) “What do you do with your time? It’s not like you have a husband or kids to worry about. “

I overheard someone say this to one of my single co-workers and could not believe my ears. “What do you do with your time?” REALLY??? The short answer to that question is, “Whatever the heck I want.” If I want to go meet some co-workers for a drink at 11pm on a Tuesday, I can. If my niece needs a new outfit for her first day of junior high, all I have to do is pick her up, take out my debit card and get to the shopping. If I feel like going away for a spontaneous weekend trip with friends, I just pack a bag and leave. When I feel like catching up on episodes of General Hospital on my DVR, I just plop myself on the couch with some fro-yo and don’t have to worry about anyone coming in and making fun of my guilty pleasure. Yes. I said General Hospital. Don’t judge me. Most of the singles I know are living exciting, busy and full lives. Singles are in a unique position, especially if you’re in your 30s (GASP!) like me. By this point, many of us have settled into careers. We are comfortable and have some disposable income that we can use however we want. For the most part, we’re not responsible for anyone but ourselves. Does this get lonely sometimes? Heck yeah! Do I want a husband and kids to share my life with eventually? Absolutely! But I’m not going to sit around and waste these precious moments of my life waiting around for my soul mate to come and sweep me off my feet. I’m gonna go out and live life to the fullest! The best piece of advice my married friends have given me is that I need to enjoy my freedom while I can. So that’s exactly what I’m going to do. Who’s with me?

7.) “You just need to put yourself out there”

Aaaaand you need to go hug a cactus! I cringe whenever someone says this to me. It makes me feel like they think I’m doing something wrong and that I need to change who I am. This might not be what people mean when they say it, but that’s how I take it. It’s like they think I’m supposed to constantly be on the prowl to catch me a man. Los Angeles is full of people putting themselves out there…WAY out there. More power to them! I’m just not built that way. That’s not my personality. I’m always OUT doing something. Doesn’t that count? I don’t sit around at home and wait for Mr. Right to come knock on my door. But when I’m out, I’m usually having a good time with my friends. I’m not scoping out the scene for some man lovin’. I’ll admit that I am way too shy when it comes to meeting guys. I have absolutely no game whatsoever. I always joke that a guy will know I’m interested in him when I can’t speak to him. My face usually turns bright red, I’ll trip or spill something and I cannot make direct eye contact. I know. I have issues. My friends might be right when they lovingly say that I need to put myself out there. I just hate hearing it. Plus, whatever happened to men pursuing women? Why do we have to put ourselves out there? Can’t they grow a pair and ask us out? Can I get an Amen? 🙂

8.) “You won’t want to come out with us, it’s just going to be couples and kids”

I want to start by addressing that most of the time our married and couple friends say this because they don’t want us to feel left out. They want us to have a good time when we’re with them and think we will be bored or feel like a 5th wheel if we go out with couples. They also feel like we won’t want to hang with their kids. We appreciate your thoughtfulness, but I’m writing this to let you know that not all of us single folk feel that way. I love my friends. Many of them are now married or part of a couple. I adore the people they are paired with and their kids. They’ve become my friends too. Why would I not want to hang out with them? They are fantastic people and I am blessed to know them. If you are one of the single people who hate hanging out with couples, it’s time to get over it. Instead of looking around the dinner table, seeing a bunch of couples and feeling like the odd woman out, try looking around the table and focusing on the amazing people you have in your life. Cherish the moments you have with them. Life is too short to miss out on time with your friends because you don’t have a date to bring with you. I will happily be the 3rd, 5th, 7th wheel if it means I get to spend time with people that I love. If you have a hard time with this, bring another single friend with you! I also think it is important for single people to have “couple friends”. Being around my married friends has taught me so much about the struggles and triumphs of relationships. I feel like I’ve been handed a marriage handbook before I even walk down the aisle. Next time your “couple friends” ask you to hang, GO! Be fearless. Do it! It’s worth a little discomfort at first. I promise! Please report back and let me know how it goes.

9.) “Maybe you should start thinking about freezing your eggs?”

Thanks, mom! Love you! My mom is the one who always told me to concentrate on my career, not to get married young and hold off on having kids. NOW she wants me to freeze me eggs? I’m just following your advice, mom. You already have 5 grandchildren. You don’t need more right now! I understand my family’s concern. I have a huge Latino family. They love babies. I cannot go to a family function without one of my cousins telling me that I need to get knocked up before it’s too late (I’m looking at you Michael!). I’m the oldest sibling in my family and all of my younger siblings have kids. I’m the oldest grandchild on my mom’s side and one of the oldest on my dad’s. Everyone has kids. I know. I’m on the late train. Guess what? I am 100% okay with that. Maybe it’s because I’ve spent my life babysitting said siblings and cousins or because I was a nanny, maybe it’s because I spend lots of time with my nieces, nephews and friends’ kids or maybe it’s because I haven’t met a man I want to marry and procreate with, whatever the reason- my biological clock is not screaming at me yet. Let me enjoy the peace while I can! I know that I’m hitting “advanced maternal age” as my very blunt doctor friend puts it, but I’m not concerned about it right now and you shouldn’t be either. Leave my eggs alone!

Is there anything that should be added to this list? Single friends, what’s the one thing you are tired of hearing?

Birthday Reflections

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A few days ago I celebrated my 28th birthday! Can you believe it? I barely can… I’m not ashamed of getting closer to 30 and thereby getting closer to 50 as the years go by, in fact I am looking forward to the beautiful gray hair that will one day grace my head! But I am very much aware of how different my life is according to the plans I set when I was about 15. I thought by now I’d be married with a few kids living in California (probably LA) either teaching or on someone’s news network preferably KTLA channel 5!!! And instead I am still pursuing my undergraduate degree in Tennessee with a wonderful husband, in a house I never thought possible to own, surrounded by the best friends I have ever had and a part of a spiritual family I wouldn’t trade for all the money in the world ( I know it’s so cliché but that’s how I feel). There are some things that still bother me but I know that God has a perfect plan for every one of my desires that are yet to be fulfilled because I know that they have come from Him!

During my birthday extravaganza of a wonderful road trip to Oklahoma and Texas I realized that the friends I have are something special! I got to see my friend who is kicking butt as a drill sergeant in action in Ft. Sill Oklahoma. I saw my dear friend and twin soul in Tulsa, Oklahoma who by the way met me at 5 in the morning (talk about love) and I got to meet my summer sister’s 3 year old daughter and new husband for the first time!! Not to mention I got a chance to hangout with some great members of my spiritual family in Oklahoma for the Fourth of July and in Texas where we got to see the Texas State campus, eat at Whataburger, Pluckers, and Salt Lick! Being able to spend my birthday with those that I haven’t seen in so many years was absolutely a blessing! It made my birthday that much more special and made me realize just how loved I am. Not to mention there was an incredible outlet mall in Texas where I got my first grown up purse (it’s Guess), some workout gear for CrossFit, and a ring from my hubby!

All in all, I’m not where I thought I’d be but I’m doing a whole lot better being exactly where God wants me to be!

Life Update Through Pictures

So I noticed that I haven’t done a weekly recap in like forever pretty much like a whole month… so instead of doing a weekly update or a two week update I decided to just give an update starting from my spring break to include some cool pictures some school pictures, some time with friends and family and cute outfits! I hope you enjoy this update and I hope that your lives are going well.

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My Week Recap: Clarity That Can’t Be Denied

This week has been so full of Jesus it’s hard to put into words all the goodness that I feel from being in His presence. I mean God has been EVERYWHERE, From selling our van to our new amazing God-fearing friends for life, to speaking to me with so much clarity it couldn’t be denied to answering my prayers for help with school teachers and my studies, He even helped me find my dance shoes. Those are the kind of things that can’t be captured in pictures… but there were a few great moments that were captured like spending time with my family during lunch, and snow falling, and babies, and good hair days. I hope that God shows up in your life in a new and powerful way!

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Fresh Infusions Anyone?

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So about mid-month last month I received another great Influenster vox box… this time it was for Palmolive’s new line of dish soap… FRESH INFUSIONS!! I received three full size 16oz bottles one to give a way and two to keep as well as 6 coupons to give to friends…There are three new scents: Lime Basil, Lemon Thyme and Ginger White Tea. I let my husband pick the one he liked best which was Lime Basil and I gave the Ginger White Tea to my friend, I gave my friend a coupon to give to someone as well, and gave the rest of the coupons to people. I think I had more fun giving things away! It was so much fun that I am thinking about having a drawing to give the Lemon Thyme bottle that I still have away but we’ll see…

So I didn’t want to do a review without using the product and I have been using it for over a month now and I like it. There’s only a fourth of the bottle gone which is great when you’re on a budget, at this rate I won’t need dish soap again for another six months!! I noticed that a little goes a long way, and the scent somehow gets stronger as you are washing, which is interesting. It is phosphate free if anyone is into that kind of thing but you can’t mix it with bleach… it works on getting my dishes really clean, my glasses shine! And I am overjoyed at how well it works on grease or caked on grim, add a few drops of dish soap some warm water let it sit for a few minutes and it wipes away really easily!! I would more than likely purchase this dish soap once my free bottles run out of course and at just under $3 at Wal-Mart it doesn’t seem like a bad purchase. It works and you get a ton of bang for you buck!!

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I did ALL of those dishes using Palmolive’s Fresh Infusions Lime Basil dish soap, Can you believe it? Have you tried any of the Fresh Infusions? What’s your favorite scent?

Disclaimer: I was not paid to review this product. This is my own opinion and I received these items free of charge in my Influenster Box.