Thursday, March 29, 2007

Happy Birthday Mom!

Happy Birthday Mom!

You are the best mother and grandmother in the world.

And you also don't like to take pictures and that's why this is the most recent one I have of you.

That's it...tonight you will not escape from the camera!

Updated to add:

AHA! I found another one!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007


The other night I was watching Jackass with Ren. We laughed alot at some of the stunts they did, but others just made my butt cheeks clench. For some reason, I can't quite stomach all the things that I used to be able to watch. I think having a child (either that or growing older) has made me a wimp. During the commercials, they kept airing footage of a new MTV show that's going to begin in April called Scarred. It's basically a show that airs videos of other people getting injured (usually skateboarding)...VERY injured, with all the bloody gruesomeness that comes along with that. I'm talking protruding broken bones, bloody noses and the whole bit. R and I even had trouble watching the commercials for it. We had to look away every time they aired it because it was just too painful to watch. I don't know why my gross-out tolerance has diminished, but I wasn't always like this. In my youthful, nothing can gross me out days, I was able to watch "Faces of Death" and browse through the "" files once in a while. If there was a train wreck of any kind, I wanted to see it. Now, I find that I just can't do that anymore.

Another way that having a child has influenced me is that I've become such a cry-baby when I see something on TV where a young child (especially if it's a boy) is suffering in any way. All these To Catch a Predator shows freak me out (don't get me wrong, I'm glad they're doing it, but it's just really eye-opening) and make me want to lock my son up in his room. Turning on the news doesn't help either with all the stories on child abduction, murder and abuse. Monday night, I saw Cold Case Files and nearly lost it at the end. It seems that I am not the only mom that this has happened to either. Meredith from Daily Kvetch also wrote (albeit, more eloquently than I) about her lowered tolerance for sad and disturbing things since she's become a mother, as well as her inability to watch the news these days.

It seems that becoming a parent does make you an wimp, an overprotective wimp in my case. When my brother was young, he had a friend who's parents would never let him sleep over anybody's house. My mom and I used to think that it was ridiculous and overprotective, but the more I watch TV these days, the more I start to agree with the parents of that boy.

Perhaps I need to stop watching TV otherwise I'll never want to let Chris out of his room:
No, you can't go outside....What? You want to learn to ride a bike? Riding a bike is overrated.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Toddler Book Review

Like I mentioned in a previous post, Chris doesn't let me pick his bedtime stories anymore. He has very strong opinions on which books he "lets" me read to him. Our bedtime routine now consists of him picking out which book he wants read to him. He brings it to me and raises his arms so that I will put him on my lap in the rocking chair. Once I'm done, he jumps off my lap to go and pick another, this will happen 3 or 4 times until I tell him that we've read enough books and it's time to go to bed. He usually chooses among the same 8 books and let me tell you, I'm starting to memorize these stories now:

Goodnight Moon: He likes to point to the moon, cow, bears, and balloon. I just got this in Spanish too, so let's see if he likes that version as well.

Hungry Caterpillar (in Spanish): He likes to stick his finger in the little holes that the caterpillar leaves. He likes the part that talks about all the fruit that the Caterpillar has eaten during the week (and junkfood on Saturday). He likes to point to the butterfly at the end.

My Good Morning Book: I bought this book on ebay because the little boy on the cover reminds me of Christian. Who knew he would end up liking it so much? It's a nice short book that I don't mind reading a million times. He likes to point to the ball, dog, pj's, teddy bear and toothbrush.

Pat the Bunny: This book is alot of fun for him since it has so many little things to do. He likes to point to the children (Judy and Paul). He likes to pat the bunny. He likes to play peekaboo with Paul. He likes to smell the flowers. At first, he didn't get why I was putting the book up to his face, but he quickly learned to smell the flowers. We always smell the flowers on the page and then I say "mmmm". The other day, my mom said that he smelled a flower in her garden and then said "mmmm". It's pretty cool how he made the connection from smelling flowers in a book to smelling them in real life. He likes to feel daddy's scratchy beard and points to the dad and says "dada". He likes me to read Judy's book and always says "shhhh" when I get to the last page which says "shhhh bunny is sleeping". He likes to put his finger through mommy's ring. He doesn't like to wave bye bye. He's never done it. I recently got him Pat the Puppy and Pat the Cat, but he doesn't seem to like these as much as the original. I find that they are wordier than Pat the Bunny.

ABC slide book: This book has pictures of items next to the letter that their name begins with. WhenI read it in English I say the letter, the sound of the letter and the name of the item. When I read it in spanish, I just tell him the names of the items. The last page has all the items on it. I ask him to point out specific items to see if he'll recognize them. He gets them right most of the time when I ask him in Spanish. In English, not so much.

The Monster at the End of This Book: This is a fun book about Grover not wanting you to turn pages because he is scared of the monster at the end of the book. The words on the page are big and expressive. Chris loves it when I read them as such. He cracks up when I get to the page that says "YOU TURNED ANOTHER PAGE!". I got him this book because I used to have it when I was young and really liked it alot.

There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly: I read this to him in a sing song voice (as if I were singing the song). He loves pointing to the animals in her belly. He gets a little carried away with the pointing and page turning sometimes and has already ripped the book.

Tortillitas Para Mama: This is a book that has little nursery rhymes from Latin American countries, but it also has the English translations. It's cute if you read the Spanish versions, but the English translations just don't carry the same meaning.

I love how he has a whole bookcase full of books, yet he always picks among these books.

It's funny how with kids, just when you think you have little routine going, they go and change it on you. It started with not letting me pick the books and now he won't go to sleep right away either. He has a little music box hanging on his crib rail which I would turn on for him when he had trouble going to sleep or if he woke up in the middle of the night. He hadn't used it in a long time until recently when he's decided to not just go to sleep nicely like he used to.

After the reading and the singing he is wide awake and when I put him in his crib he sits up (or stands up) and starts asking for Dada or tries to start talking and babbling. I put the little music on for him and that seemed to calm him down and get him to go to sleep.

Last night I put him down and he was laying down nicely but then sprung up (because I hadn't put the music on for him) to turn the music on. Not only that, but he pressed the button repeatedly to choose which song he wanted to hear. Once the song came on, he laid back down and went to sleep, just like that. Silly boy.

The apple doesn't fall...

...far from the tree.

The next time you can't find your child...check the fridge.
I know I do.

Don't even try hiding the yogurt behind the milk grandma...oh wait what's this?...yummy strawberries!

To give you an idea of how fickle he is with food these days: I took these pictures a couple of weeks ago when he used to LOVE strawberries. Now-a-days, they are public enemy #1. Go figure.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Fair fun

On Sunday, R, Chris and I went to THE FAIR (be there!). We went as soon as they opened to avoid the crowds and avoid the crowds we did. Have you ever seen that midway so empty? It was great!

First we headed over to kiddie land where Cman got to ride the carousel. He stayed on the horse (as opposed to my arms) for most of the ride (better than his last carousel ride), but got a little spooked at the end when the kids on the roller coaster next door started screaming. After that ride, I scoped out the place to see what else we could go on, but unfortunately, Chris was too little to ride anything else (must be at least 36"). I hope he'll grow 4 inches within the next year (is that even possible?), otherwise next year promises to be a no-go as well.

Since we couldn't go on anymore rides, we decided to walk around and stuff our faces instead. Between the three of us (OK, fine, mostly me) we managed to eat: a cheeseburger, 2 slices of pizza, cotton candy, 2 sodas, 1 lemonade, and 1 elephant ear. As we strolled through the fair the little man fell asleep, so R and I were able to check out the exhibits and stuff for sale. We didn't buy anything, but at one point or another I was tempted to buy one or more of the following: a mattress, a caricature, a Peruvian hat, a Pearl Jam iron-on patch, a fountain, a koi fish pond, a dancing puppet, and one of those super soft fur throws. Yes, now you know why Ren won't leave me unsupervised with a credit card for more than a minute.

After the exhibits we headed over to the petting zoo. I was about to go in by myself, but fortunately Chris woke up just as I was entering, so I scooped him out of his stroller and took him with me. Talk about a rude awakening...
good morning mom... what is this thing in my face?
He was a bit freaked out by the close proximity of the animals, but was curious nonetheless. We bought little carrots to feed the animals, but Chris wanted nothing to do with that. It's a wonder I didn't get my fingers bitten off....notice the sign...and notice my hand. Yeah. I'm a fool. Fortunately for me, the animals were very gentle as they had had their fill of fingers for the day. Chris was quite wide-eyed as he got to see lots of neat animals that he had never seen before: a camel, a zeedonk (zebra+donkey), a kangaroo, and goats. I was having a great old time petting this little fella. I noticed that he felt alot like the throws that were on sale in the exhibition area...and then I felt a little sad because I realized that throw I wanted to buy was probably this little guy's cousin.

After the petting zoo, we headed over to the circus tent. Chris had never been to the circus before. He's not really a fan of loud, big crowds, and the dark tent didn't help much either. We were late to the show, so our seats were all the way at the top. He watched a bit of the show, but quickly got bored of it and sat back down on my lap. Whenever the crowd cheered or clapped he would tense up. Whenever some one around us would clap or cheer, he would turn around and give them the evil eye as if to say "shut up" and at one point he shrieked really loudly for no reason. R and I made the wise decision to leave.

We headed over to the agriculture tent instead. Cman got to see even more animals there. They had sheep, pigs, turkeys, geese, goats, roosters, guinea pigs and FUZZY PEEPS! I especially liked watching him trying to pet the evil red-eyed bunny. Oh and we also had fun taking some corny pictures (ha ha).

After the animal overload, we were quite exhausted and decided to call it a day. Despite not being able to ride anything, we had a great family day at the fair. I bought 22 coupons and only used about 5, so if anyone wants to go again, count me in.

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Saturday, March 17, 2007

Happy Saint Patrick's Day!

What a fashionable bow tie!...

...For some reason I feel as if I've seen it somewhere else before.

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Thursday, March 15, 2007

The Fair...Be There

(Portions of this post were written last year and posted on another blog, but I'm all about recycling, so if you read it last year, you get to read it again. How fun!)

Look at what's opening up today my fuzzy peeps!

That's right! It's the FAIR that comes every year (it's 56th year infact)! Yay! I absolutely love the fair. I guess it's part of my 31 going on 13 outlook. I've been asking people around me at work if they're going to the fair and all they do is give me this look of disgust as if to say "the fair, ugh, why?".

Maybe I haven't grown up yet, but I still love the fair. Actually, I think it has to do with the fact that I'm majorly sentimental and I love anything that reminds me of my *happy* childhood moments. I remember when we used to get the fair maps at school. They would hand them out at the end of the day on purpose because they knew that once we got our sticky little hands on them, there was no way we were going to pay attention to what was going on in class (same thing with yearbooks). I loved opening the map and seeing all the cool rides illustrated on the page. We used to map out our route and tell each other which rides we were going to go on. Ah what fun! Usually around that time, we would also be eating a lot of Holsum bread! Remember those! 5+5! My mom would save the wrappers and all you had to do was bring 5 wrappers and 5 bucks and you could get unlimited rides! Those were the good old days, then the bread people started wising up and before we knew it, it wasn't 5+5 anymore, but 12+12 or some other ridiculous number. I always wondered up to what number they would go, but I guess that 25+25 didn't fit on the wrapper.

I remember I used to ride almost every ride! Unfortunately as time passed, some rides started giving me nausea (Himalaya, but perhaps it was the awful carnies and rock music that were giving me the heaves). Then, some more time passed and the rides started giving me headaches. At that point I had to accept that I was now officially old. I cannot ride those damn things anymore (except the dopple looping, yes, it's spelled with two p's instead of b's...wierd, I know. Is it me? or did this ride used to be called the dopple looping star? what happened to the star?). So now I just go for the reasons that all the old people go for, the food (oh the glorious food), shows, animals and exhibits. I remember when I was young I used to think, "how boring! I can't believe anyone would want to look at those boring things, only old farts that can't go on the rides do that". Ha ha, that would make me an old fart now. I don't even like the big wheel because you're so high up and so...well...unprotected. Yes, yes, I know I'm old.

Gosh I have so many wonderful memories of the fair that this post is getting long and ridiculous (too bad, keep reading). I remember Ayleen and I would go to people watch. We'd curse at all the skinny girls who could wear such cute outfits at the fair and were usually attached to some cute boy holding their hand...bitches...haha. I remember I always wanted to have a boyfriend that I could go to the fair with and hold hands with. Wouldn't you know it, the man I married, hates the fair, go figure. I remember Cristy and I used to live really close. I remember looking at the fair through someone's (Cristy's?) binoculars cause we lived in apartments and could see the fair from there. I remember that one time Cristy and I got on one of those little haunted house rides where the guy comes out from behind the door and scares the crap out of you. I remember that Cristy started punching said guy in the head for scaring her. Hee hee. I remember that I was scared of riding those haunted house cars and couldn't go on the ride by myself (until a couple of years ago!). I remember there was a witch at the door of the haunted house that had a sign that said "buy tickets to see my house". I remember that Jenny's dad would sneak us in and it was always like some covert secret mission.

Unfortunately Jen lives in LA now, so there will be no more secret missions. Buuuut, Cristy is here (nudge nudge) and Ayleen is here now too (nudge nudge nudge) since she moved back from Tampa (YAY!), so we can all go again together and relive some old memories. Except that this time I have a feeling we'll be spending alot of time in this section of the fair.

Which leads me to Christian. I can't wait to introduce Cman to the joys of the fair (rides, food and animals galore!...did I mention the food already?). Hopefully, he'll like the kiddie rides and not get freaked out (by the pimps with purple hats). We will obviously only ride the ones that I can fit my ass into as well because he's too young to ride alone. Oh what fun!

Wednesday, March 14, 2007


The other day I read a post on lullabies and it inspired me to think about C-man's bedtime routine and what songs I sing to him.

If we're at my mom's house, he has dinner there, plays in the playpen for a little bit while the adults eat dinner. Then we bathe him and go home, or we go home and then I bathe him there. If we're at home, he eats dinner and then we play a little bit in the playroom. Around 7:45 I announce that it's bath time and we go upstairs. I (or R, if he's not working) bathe him and then we put on his PJ's. I pick out three books (1. daily bible stories, 2. any book I choose and 3. Goodnight Moon) to read and settle into the rocking chair.

Once, I've read Goodnight Moon, I give him his blanket and sing some lullabies to him. My singing repertoire usually consists of: This old man, ABC's, Rock-a-bye Baby, and Twinkle Twinkle. If he still doesn't look sleepy then we break into round two which consists of the songs from some of my favorite Disney rides: Yo ho Yo ho, Zipadee doo dah, Haunted Mansion song and It's a Small World. I figure this will either create a love for Disney songs or put him to sleep on the rides when we go to Disney World.

After my bedtime karaoke performances are over, I put him in his crib (he's usually still awake) with his Pooh blanket and he turns over and goes to sleep with nary a peep. Now isn't that lovely? I wonder how long that will last. Did I just jinx myself by writing about it?

The answer to that question my friends is a resounding yesssss....
You see, I've been meaning to write about his bedtime routine for a while now. I wrote this post a while back and had it sitting in my drafts. I hadn't had the time to finish it or post it, so it just sat there. I didn't think it would matter since this has been his bedtime routine for several months now, so even if I posted it a couple of weeks late, the routine would be the same right?

Ha ha ha...the if-you-post-it-you-will-jinx-it (IYPIYWJI) gods have been paying attention though. Actually, they're punishing me prematurely because I hadn't even pressed the publish button yet, so wtf?

For the past week, Chris has been refusing all the books that I've chosen to read to him. He used to sit through three stories, but lately though, he hasn't been letting me read any book that he hasn't picked out himself. I'm barely on the first page when he slams it shut and pushes it away. I finally gave up and let him pick the books, so it appears that I'm destined to read the same three books for the rest of my life (because he always picks the same ones): The hungry caterpillar, Pat the bunny and Goodnight moon. Nothing else will do.

Wait, there's more...

My son must have also been watching American Idol lately because he doesn't want me to sing to him anymore either. Last night after I finished Goodnight Moon he asked for his blanket and snuggled himself in my arms. I settled back in the rocking chair and started my rendition of "This old man", when all of a sudden this young man started whacking me in the throat so that I wouldn't sing. I know I'm no Celine Dion, but ouch, that's kind of harsh there Simon. So I sat there and rocked him in silence. After a little while I tried again and got whacked again...OK dude, I get it. No more singing. Since there was no singing to be had, I just put him in his bed and he rolled over and went to sleep. Just like that. Wow, it seems our bedtime routine just got shortened.

My mom asks me why I bother with the whole routine of reading and singing, when it probably isn't really necessary. I tell her that I do it because I like to do it. I know that he would probably go to sleep with one book and no songs just the same (he proved that last night), but this is the only moment in the day that he and I get to unwind from our busy day and spend some quality quiet time together. It's our special snuggle time. I know that pretty soon, he'll be a big boy and won't want to cuddle with mommy anymore, so I'm trying to enjoy it as long as I can.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Monkey hear, monkey say

Remember when I said there was an explosion around the corner? (no, not that kind of explosion). Well, the corner has been turned, and boy was I right. Ren and I have to be very careful with what we say these days because the C-man is trying to copy most of the sounds we make. In the past two weeks he's added these sounds to his repertoire. Here are some new "words" that our little parrot has tried to say right after we've just said them (some are in English and some are in Spanish w/translations):

ene = Ernie
ama = cama = bed
una = luna = moon
aya = aya= over there
tata = goodnight stars (from Goodnight Moon)
ta = pelota = ball
awa = agua = water
ua-ua = wow-wow= dog
tata = ventana = window
ma = Mike (from Monster's Inc.)
ba = blocks
ayai = Aye aye (as in "AYE AYE Captain" from the Spongebob theme song)

I don't know if they can officially be called "words" yet (since they're hard to understand), but more like sounds that he makes when he's trying to repeat what I just said. It's funny because he'll try to say the word once and then when I want him to repeat it so that daddy can hear, he never says it again. R says he's like that WB frog that only sings when no one's looking. How true that is.

A couple of weeks back, I also mentioned that we had made an appointment for Cman to see the audiologist. After a couple of rescheduled appointments, we finally made it in to see the good doctor today. We were hoping to find out why Cman constantly tugs at his right ear (and touches the area of his head behind the ear as well). The doc examined his ears and saw nothing remarkable. He did a hearing test and it showed that he's within the normal range, so the doc said that it may just be a habit. He also said that one reason he touches his head could be that he has some sort of infection in the bones of his head behind the ear, but that it wasn't probable because he would have fevers, pain, and redness. The doctor told us that he could order a CT scan if we really wanted to, but that he felt that it probably wasn't necessary. We told him that we would think about it.

One the one hand, I would like to find out if there's any medical reason behind this, but on the other hand, it will require that he be sedated and he may freak out a bit. He's been through so much already with the finger incident, that I don't want to put him through anymore unnecessary stress. Then again, if there really is something in the CT scan wouldn't it be better to find it sooner rather than later? Am I being a hypochondriacal mother? or just a concerned parent?'s hard to tell sometimes; it's a fine line I tell you.

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Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Memorandum to the dog


Date: March 7, 2007

To: Lucy

From: Management

Subject: Book usage

It's PAT the bunny....

not EAT the bunny...

Please try to remember that the next time you take it upon yourself to steal borrow this book.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Buy this house

R is selling a house that he bought earlier this year. Because I don't think our realtor is doing a very good job, it's time to take matters into my own hands blog.

If you know of anyone that is looking to buy a house in Florida (Miami, Kendall, Hammocks area to be precise) please point them in my direction. Actually, you can click on the little house that I put on the sidebar over there --->.

It's in a great neighborhood, it's been totally remodeled and the price is very reasonable for a single family house around that area. I've seen houses that are less polished, going for more or the same, so I really think it's just our realtor that isn't on the ball. houses, classifieds, The Flyer, Craigslist, get with the program bro (ha ha, I said "bro").

And now back to our regularly scheduled programing...

Monday, March 05, 2007

Go Bill Go

With all the pirate mayhem that's been going on here lately, I didn't get a chance to show you my Presidential picture
(<---- there it is).

Last Thursday I scored some tickets for R and I to go listen to President Bill Clinton speak about his Global Initiative. Usually, I'm not very interested in politics, but I did want to have the experience of watching one of our Nation's Presidents speak in person. As you can see, our seats were pretty good, not front row or anything, but we were on a side section close to the stage. Go here to see some better pictures (obviously not taken by me).

Friday, March 02, 2007

Pirates Gone Wild!

Aha...the long awaited girls night out (GNO) post has arrived. Cristy wrote a wonderful post about it on the girls blog, so I may steal borrow some of her words and pictures for this post.

After much deliberation (2 weeks) we finally decided to go to dinner for GNO. Those that were feeling up to it, could continue on elsewhere.

We settled on P.F.Chang's because it's "unique and magically delicious", but we'll get to the leprechaun's later. We all looked fabulous especially since we spent so much time primping specifically for this event. Because I didn't get to wear my pirate patch and hillbilly teeth on my anniversary dinner (I forgot them at home by mistake...can you believe it?), I decided to bring them along with me for the girls night out. I also decided to up the sparkly dressy factor by wearing a bow tie. A little early for St. Patty's, but really, who cares when you look this good.

After dinner we headed out to Martini Bar at Sunset Place. We had a couple of drinks and had a fun time dancing. Cristy "got to meet the shark guy!" and I had to pull out my costume props because when I go out, the men are always swarming around me. I usually have to beat them off with sticks, so I'm glad I thought of bringing my props along. It was fun watching everyone do a double take that night. Usually the Miami dancing spots are packed with people that are full of themselves, so it must have been odd for them to see someone that was deliberately trying to look ugly and unattractive. We even ran into a couple of friends who declared me to be "insane" for having such beautiful teeth (and large healthy pink gums).

When the music started to get a little too youthful for our tastes, we headed over to Vice/Soho (whatever it's called). My brother told me that only weird people go there, so I guess we were definitely in the right place. The dancing and drinking got better continued there. Everyone was going crazy on the dance floor, but I was subdued and demure. They were showing off their skills and having fun dancing, but then I decided to show them how it's really done (Lisa was probably wishing she had gone home after P.F. Chang's at this point).

Fortunately for her we decided to call it quits around 3 or 4 am (I forget). When we couldn't hold our drinks anymore (literally), had no more energy and were too pooped to party, we finally stumbled headed out.

Thanks for a wonderful night out ladies. I can't wait for the next one; I'm already getting my costume ready!

{special thanks to Marilu, Amanda and Lilli for the photos}

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Thursday, March 01, 2007

Hugs and Mussels

For our anniversary dinner, Ren took me to this nice Italian place in Coral Gables called Caffe Abbracci. Once again, everyone except myself has apparently already heard of this place. The ambiance was dark and cozy, but unfortunately, it was very loud in there, so he and I had to be screaming across the table at each other. I wish we would've gotten a corner table then perhaps we could've talked a little more. The decor looked like a little outdated (think calle ocho banquet hall) with neon lights and flowery sculpture looking things, but at least the food was yummy.

We shared the mussels in white wine as an appetizer (an action we would later regret). R had filet mignon which was delicious, and I had the black lobster ravioli in a white sauce...heaven. Our dessert consisted of mixed berries over a creme brulee type custard in a bowl made out of hardened melted sugar. I don't know about you, but I love it when I can not only eat my food, but the receptacle that it comes in too. The only downside was that both Ren and I got sick that night....and the following morning....and several days after that. We're thinking that it was bad mussels because that was the only thing that we had shared.

We had a wonderful evening out and it was nice to go to a place that didn't have combo meals, high chairs or paper placemats and crayons for a change. My mom stayed home with Christian to make it all possible and for that I am totally grateful. Regardless of the ongoing digestive disruptions R and I have had this week, the food was good and we will probably go back. Although next time, I think we'll get the mozzarella appetizer instead.

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