Momma of Dos: April 2013

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Developing Self-Worth {Faith}

I will always be the first to admit that it's been a challenge to transition from years, and years of working crazy amount of hours, crazy amount of jobs in a crazy work environment outside the home to working crazy amount of hours, crazy amount of jobs in a crazy work environment inside the home. Ha. It's true. As someone who has worked outside the home their entire life, I prayed daily to become a Stay@HomeMomma, now that it has finally happened it's been, well. Yes, Crazy. 

Stressful. Overwhelming. Unexpected. 


I didn't picture the demand, the job itself, and the amount of patience it took to stay home with a 3 year old and a 2 year old. It's been chaos. Every day a little better but definitely a new challenge as the days go by....if that makes sense. Finding a balance has been difficult but slowly I am finding a new pace of life, a new schedule and my niche within my home. 

The balance is found in preparation, growth and learning from your mistakes. I believe being pampered on the outside can be just as important as being pampered within. When we make a change to our exterior being we feel great on the inside; proud and loved. When we make a change on our inner being, it shines through to the outside. I think people notice when you get a haircut but they notice even more when you have peace and happiness on the inside.

prayon


I am what I like to call an "open-minded non-traditional Catholic". I understand all the values and morals taught but I don't like to limit myself to one set of strict views because I feel that you can miss out on something so much bigger and so much more amazing. I believe in a true blend of the old traditional views mixed with new forms of worship of praise. A balance. Never one extreme or the other. 

In my almost 32 years of life, I have always "been" a Catholic. It wasn't until I turned 24 that I knew what having faith was. It was then that I not only opened my heart but my mind to new ways of thinking. I knew I loved praying to the Virgen de Guadalupe and that I believed in Jesus and the Saints. But, the traditional way of worship and praise just didn't fulfill this seeking and thirsty little heart of mine. I dove straight into my church and became more involved that is when I started to find new ways of worship and praise that weren't the traditional nights of praying the Rosary. This time I was deep in meditation and peace that only God could bring me.

I would sit in a quiet dark church and ask Jesus to sit with me to show me His light and guide me. And, as crazy as this may sound many, many days His presence was there and I had peace and a new sense of belief.

These days. I attend mass and read my Momma Devotional Bible {Mom's Devotional Bible NIV} and I also pray day in and day out for different reason. I wear medallas de Santos and light candles. I also attend events at different churches that I know my soul will benefit from, not always Catholic churches and I definitely enjoy it. 

Just this weekend I attend the annual Women's Event at New Hope Church in Pearland. It was my 2nd year attending and the message was awesome last year it was about Marriage and Relationships. This year it was about us; as Momma's, Wives, Daughters, Sisters, etc. We are all human and we all make mistakes. We can't please everyone and as Women we need God in our daily lives to guide us and lead us onto the path that He has planned for us. I Loved it. I know I will definitely make it a yearly event. Plus, I  got to spend time with my Beautiful Amiga Yvonne from Spanglish Girl which is always fun! 

Friday, April 26, 2013

{Friday Letters}

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{Hola Friday!} This week has been a productive one, compared to last week this week was GREAT! Ha.

{Hello Exercise} It's been a while old friend.... we shall see how long we can stay connected... You and I we have a Love/Hate relationship. Being healthy is important to me, so don't mess it up this time. Just sayin'!

{Dear Weekend} WAIT FOR IT.... Ha. Ha. We will be busy!

{Dear Kids} I love you. We had a good week. I can't complain and I don't think you can either. I know that some days our activities are "lame" but trust me you have a blast no matter what! This week we went to he bookstore... it was good but I think it will get better... Next stop a Public Library! OH MY!

{Dear Hubby} Thank you for being so good to me. For putting up with my crazy ideas and going along with them. For always supporting me no matter how silly the situation, or expensive, even though you throw a fit first.  HA. But, you are there for me. I love you.

{Dear Houston Weather} Are you kidding me? Is it cold or hot? Spring or Summer? Can you make up your mind?!

Happy Weekend Ya'll!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

{Thankful Thursdays} Link-Up!!

Have not done one of these in a while... definitely need to be reminded these days....

Thankful Thursdays Button



This week I am most thankful for:

{My Age} I will be 32 in June. That means I have lived through a lot with a lot of people who have come and gone. I am thankful for life, my life experiences and always making the best of every situation. I have in my 32 years gained wisdom, faith, and hopefully maturity. I know what I want and where my life is going. Sure nothing is set in stone and I don't have life figured out but I definitely know who I am and where I am going. 

{Sincerity} I have a lot of friends who have the best interest in mind and who are all living their lives on their own terms and following their own paths. I like to think that when it comes to our relationship they are being sincere. I am thankful for their sincerity and honesty. Be who you are and never allow popularity to overcome truth. It's what I have learned..... 

{Becoming a Stay@HomeMomma} My children will only be 3 { and 7 months} and 2 yrs old once. I will never be able to come back to this stage of their lives again, it's been so critical, our bonding, my patience being tested, and our lives being rocked to their very core. We have had to experience the best and worse of each other to know that, this is it, our little family of 4, we have each other and I pray that we will be here for one another for years, and years to come. My 6 months at home have made me thankful for my life, my children who are an amazing Blessing and for my Husband who has become an even more amazing Provider. It's been difficult. But, I am thankful. 

{Social Media/Networking} This has made me feel relevant. I usually shy away from joining big groups of super important and accomplished Bloggers/Writer/Activist/ Social Media Gurus because I am intimidated by their expertise. But, I have been so Blessed to have been added to some pretty awesome groups of  Bloggers/Writer/Activist/ Social Media Gurus not just from Texas but from all over the U.S. They have made me feel as if what I sit and enjoy doing is well worth it. I am thankful for those group of  Bloggers/Writer/Activist/ Social Media Gurus  who have made me feel as if I belong. It's so important as a Stay@HomeMomma to have a sense of self and community. Thank you everyone. 


What are you most thankful for this week??

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

{A day in the life of a Super Hero's Momma}

I have a 45 lb almost 4 foot little man Super Hero in my life. As you can guess everyday is a new Adventure.

He is "Sgrong!"
Honest.
Loving.
Caring.
Daring.

SuperHero


And, when he is not out fighting evil and squashing the bad guy he is at home reeking havoc on his 2 year old Sister {or destroying toys and making a mess}! Ha. Trust me when no one is looking he is sweet, he takes care of us and he helps out and prays for everything possible and in sight. Deep down inside my Super Hero is a softy, aren't they all?

His Super Powers are awesome hugs and killer dimples! No one gets past him without saying "Hi" or complimenting his beautiful heart which shines through his smile and bright eyes! The ladies will one day be in trouble, and at that time, so will I.

SuperH


No matter what, his little Sister Loves him so much. She is his faithful sidekick. And, even though she may not see it now he is teaching her to be strong and to stand up for herself.  She looks up to him and wants to be just like him. And, oh boy, is everyday a new adventure with him, something new awaiting us around every corner. ::insert super awesome Super Hero theme song here::

On this day....we were looking for the bad guy and reviving all the animals. This Super Hero loves animals and learning about them. He has a genuine interest for animals and this planet, I think he will one day become a Scientist or Geologist!

SuperHeroSon


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My Super Hero may be a little stubborn but he means well and he always has a secret move in mind to make it through the situation. In this house we always listen to our Super Hero, he knows what's best for man kind!

SuperHeroMomma


Until next time....

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

{Guest Blogger} Me

Hola Everyone!


Today I am over at ALL MY HAPPY ENDINGS as a Guest Blogger! Whoop-Whoop!!!

You can check my post out here:   http://allmyhappyendings.blogspot.com/2013/04/guest-post-homemade-nature-bags.html



ALlMyHappyEndings

Monday, April 22, 2013

Inspired. {Local Blogger}


When I started Blogging I had no idea what being a Blogger was, and I definitely didn't know about the Latinos that were so immersed in such an amazing community. I had been Blogging since 2008 but it wasn't until last year that I started to see Blogging in a different light. I used to Blog to share my everyday happenings as a Wife and Employee, then as a Pregnant Wife and Employee, then as a first time Momma, and finally as a Momma of Dos. 

Last year I had the opportunity to attend my first ever Blogger Conference here in Houston and the doors that it has opened as well as the AH-MA-ZING people that I have met has changed my views not only about my own Blog and personal journey but about the Latino Blogging Community as a whole! 

I am HUGE on locals. I love to know that everyday women and men who live here in Houston are Blogging not just to make a personal difference but to make a difference in our community. 

I seek daily inspiration and I have created this mini-series "Inspired." in hopes of inspiring others. 

Today's feature is a Local Blogger {Independent Mami} Q & A: 

 


IndependantMami



Hi! My Name is Alba from Independentmami.net, I am 34 yrs old (turning the dreaded 35 this yr) and I am from El Salvador. I am married. I have 2 kids: MJ 14 and Lil Bit 16 months.

How long have you been Blogging? I have been blogging since 2008 but never full time like other bloggers out there.  For me it is just an outlet, I have fun, but when the fun stops I can turn it off.

How did you first get started and what was the most difficult part?  Blogging seemed perfect for me back then.  I was looking for an outlet, a place to have a voice, never thought I would really have much response or influence at all.  The most difficult part was opening up and letting go.  Anything on the internet is no longer yours and that was scary, and it still is.

Tell me what is it that you are after/what were your original goals for your Blog?  I wish I could turn this into a business where I did not have to go to my 8-5 Corporate America job.  

Have you met those goals or gone beyond your expectations?  I have yet to meet that goal but blogging has taken me beyond my initial expectations and who knows where it is taking me.

Tell me what motivates you to continue Blogging?  The opportunity and possibilities are what keep looking for more.

What is your usual plan of action for Blogging?  There is no set plan.  I do not follow a calendar or plan too much ahead.

Did anyone help push you or inspire you to get here?  At first the Walmart 11 moms were the ones who inspired me, then meeting a great group of Latina bloggers really inspired me to believe that I wasn't alone out there.  In our Latin culture anything out of the norm it taboo, you just don't do it.  You are crazy.  Call me crazy then because after meeting these ladies the more I got inspired.  Ana Flores, Rory from MamaContemporanea, and Sylvia from Mama Latina tips are great women who have helped me in one way or another.  They continue to inspired me and others.  

What advice do you have for others in your place? Or for someone who wants to start Blogging?  Advice hmmm...Do what works for you!  You will not become a millionaire entrepreneur from blogging from one day to another.  Some are successful and some aren't.  You get what you give.  This is a full time job and it is a real world you have to deal with out there.  Sometimes people are nice or not, willing to help or not, or embracing you to the community or not liking that you are coming into their territory.   

We all struggle daily with so many personal and daily stress; what has been your favorite quote, book, movie, item, or website that has helped you keep strong and move forward?  My motto is Live Life don't let life live you.  I love my family and that is my priority.  God, family and then work....it just works for me.


Please feel free to contact Alba via Email, FB or Twitter:

IndependantMami2

@independentmami 

And don't forget to visit her Blog: www.independentmami.net



{Momma Note} If you would like to nominate someone for the "Inspired" series, please contact me for details!!! ::mommaofdos@gmail.com:: Also, Momma of Dos will be featured on another Local Blogger's Blog on the 23rd, Wait for it...... 

Friday, April 19, 2013

Mini-Vacation {Lake Charles, Louisiana}

This past weekend we had our first ever family mini-vacation road trip! For some reason or another in the last 2 years since my daughter was born we have not really left Houston as a family. 

My Hubby had to go to Utah last year for work and I made one long distance trip to see my Aunt who was very ill in Detroit in 2011 without my Hubby as well as two other trips; one to Arkansas for my Brother's wedding and one to Lake Charles to see my Dad with my Mom and kids.

This past weekend we made that same trip to visit my Dad only this time with my Hubby! It's only a 2 1/2 hour drive and my Dad has been coming to Houston so much that we decided to give him a little break. 

The kids always LOVE seeing their Granpa! We enjoy the trip as well, it's a nice get away without really going too far! 

Here is a re-cap of what we did. Enjoy! 

We had Crawfish at the church where my Dad attends!
{The kids were doing well until it got spicy then we had to make a mad dash for some McDonald's!}
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We enjoyed Granpa's backyard and explored a little ....
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We watched the only brave one run through the Spalsh Pad at the Veteran's Memorial Park.
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We relaxed and enjoyed the peace.... In awe of God's Love for us.
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We saw my Dad, which brings us great joy.... great Blessings.

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Lake Charles was fun...can't wait for next time...

Follow me on Instagram for more picture from our road-trip {@mommaofdos }

Friday, April 12, 2013

{Friday Letters} 2013

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{Why Hello there Friday}
I am so happy to see you!!! Please stay a while... haha. This has been a long week. Taking it one day at a time!

{Dear Kids}
This week we had fun, we had a pool outing and several visitors! It was fun! We didn't learn much this week but we always have next week....
Love you both!

{Dear Santiago} 
You are an amazing little man, you seem to understand more and more that I need you around and that you are a HUGE help! Thank you for being such a great Big Brother and such a fun little man! You are so smart and observant always anticipating what we need... you are such a beautiful son.
Love you more than words can express....

{Dear Camila}
You are so super girly, your ways are too cute and your beauty is beyond anything that I have ever seen. You are my little baby and beautiful angel that God has given me. Oh yes and you are one smart little Momma... you catch on to everything...and you talk more than me! I love you so much.

{Dear Hubby} 
You are such a hard worker and your constant support and love is so important to me. Thank you for worrying and trying to figure it all out! You are also a very smart and hardworking employee, don't ever think otherwise.. you are strong and a great provider don't ever doubt yourself!
Love you.

{Dear Houston Blogger Community and Blogger Community as a whole!} 
YOU GUYS ROCK! Seriously!!! Thank you for all of your help and support, you really inspire me more and more everyday!!! SPECIAL THANKS TO MY LONG DISTANCE BUDDIES..One in New Jersey and the other in Cali...{Ruby and Xenia you ladies are amazing, THANK YOU!!!}
Thanks!!!

{Dear Social Media}
Where have you been all my life, your ability to unite people near and far and to allow us to share and express is out of this world! Thank you for your innovation and constant evolution into something better and more attainable.
P.S. Have you seen the Social Media reference in the Jack in the Box commercial funny but un-true!! Social Media professionals are very intelligent and creative people. So, yeah. Trust me, we know what a copy machine is... and who even uses paper copies anymore...just sayin'...

{Dear Future Career}
I am coming to get you, so watch out!!!

{Dear Body and Health}
You don't know this but the changes I am making have really paid off in the last month... hope you will appreciate me in 6 months when we meet out goals!

Have a GREAT weekend Eveyone!!!!



Thursday, April 11, 2013

#WhiteCloudDiapers {Momma Review}

{Momma Disclosure: This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of White Cloud Diapers. We received a Pack of Wal-Mart White Cloud Diapers, in exchange for this review. We also attended an in-home event which provided us with more free product. The statements below are both my true and honest opinions.}

white cloud diaper logo

{Logo provided by: Wal-Mart White Cloud Diapers}

These days some of our biggest challenges have become some of our best experiences. A couple of things that we have learned about products since becoming a one income household is that we seek items that are both affordable and of good quality. Who doesn't enjoy a good bargain that comes with an even better product?

WHITECLOUDDIAPERS WALMART


Which is why when given the opportunity to try out the Wal-Mart exclusive brand #WhiteCloudDiapers and attend an in-home  event with fellow Houston Bloggers, I was excited! We received a bag of size 5 diapers to try about a week before the event. Even though my son who is 3 1/2 is in the process of being potty trained we use a combination of diapers and training pants. Our biggest problem with diapers is appropriate fit, my son is a big kid! When we received the diapers I immediately noticed the size, they seemed larger and more absorbent than  most other brands. Once we tried them on for size they were a perfect fit! And, after a week in them, I can honestly say that I was very satisfied not only with the leakage protection but with the overall quality of the diapers!

My son was comfortable in them and the savings that we will have from switching to this product will be well worth it. Both of us will be happy campers!

P-D-646 S3_m

{Image provided by: Wal-Mart White Cloud Diapers}

I then attended the home event at our awesome Hostess's home; {Formula Mom} who was not just very welcoming and sweet but also very generous! Meeting the new Momma's and discussing our experiences with the product was a lot of fun and very informative. Wal-Mart is a regular store for us these days as we learn about new ways to make ends meet while providing our little Team Gomez with all of the necessities. I definitely learned a lot about #WhiteCloudDiapers and made some new Momma friends along the way!

WalmartWhiteCloudDiapers

Please be sure to check out Wal-Mart's website and in store ads to receive more information about weekly specials and in store deals!



{Diapering can be one of the biggest expenses in a family’s weekly budget and a great performing diaper is a must-have for parents. In order to make this affordable, Wal-Mart has reintroduced their premium line of White Cloud diapers to address the needs of today’s busy parents.

White Cloud Diapers provide your baby the highest quality diaper with superior leakage protection, exceptional softness and great fit. White Cloud Diapers are available exclusively at Walmart, where you can find low prices everyday on all your family’s needs. Check them out today!

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of #WhiteCloudDiapers.}

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Top 5 favorite activities to keep a Toddler busy!

{Indoors} 

I haven't been a Stay@HomeMomma for long! But, I will be the first to admit, it's been a difficult transition to make but I am finally getting the hang of it all. 

One thing that I struggled with was keeping my Dos {Two} Toddlers busy! Busy so that they can use up their brain and physical energy and not drive me bonkers! 

The last few months have been cold which has been my other challenge! 

Here are my TOP 5 Favorite Indoor Activities:

{Finger Painting} 

Yes, it will get messy and yes, you will need to plan to do a lot of cleaning afterward, but it's fun their creations are awesome and a great insight into their little magical growing brains! The best part is asking them afterward, what is that? The answers are the best! 

Here are some of Santi's creations! {one thing you should know about Santiago is he has a very active and wild imagination.. his pretend play sometimes goes above and beyond anything we can think of and he is quick to improvise...he has made his Lil'Sister catch on to this and she too runs wild..it's so much fun to see.}

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{Puzzles & Coloring Books}
Another fun and easy indoor activities includes puzzles and colors! You can't go wrong with word building or alphabet puzzles you are slowly teaching your kids some pretty basic vocabulary and/or numbers. You can't go wrong with these.... And, who doesn't like to color, if my kids are eating the crayons they are coloring and it keeps them pretty busy! Be prepared for coloring on the walls, floors and tables though... we have proof of our kids creative mind in the hallway, in the bathroom and on our kitchen table. No worries, crayon washes out... the memories they are building will last a life time.... 

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{Pretend Play}

The kids have their rooms and living room as their toy/play area. Nothing is really off limits and  there are no real restrictions when it comes to how they play or where they play. YES we stay away from dangerous objects and chemicals, but they are pretty much allowed to play all over the house... yes it's tiring, yes it's never ending..but my kids will only be this old for so long... and when I go back to work they will have to be limited to the pretend play at school and I really don't mind the mess, until company comes over then I run to clean it all up! 

My kids are also very gender neutral, Santi plays with Cami's toys and Cami plays with Santi's toys. Distinctions are only made to assure that Camila gets her fair share of toys! Ha. They are allowed to explore and ask endless questions... I try to answer them all the best way possible... It's fun to see their reactions and to hear their questions.

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{Reading}

Our home library is not very extensive but we enjoy those few books that we have and we are yet to try story time at a Public Library or Book Store, I know my children very well, their attention span and ability to get wild in public. For now we will stick to our at home reading time and I know that they are capturing lots of words and a lot of their imagination from them. I think we are doing pretty good and in the mean time I will try to expand our selection...

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{Movie Time}

This is probably my favorite activity throughout the day... MOVIE TIME! I get to sit for at least half an hour until one of the kids gets bored... and if I am lucky, one of the two, or BOTH of the kids will fall asleep and I get to really rest, only for a little while. Otherwise it's fun to share a spot on the couch with the kids and just sit quietly after a long day. Santiago is better these days at watching movies, or Netflix shows. Cami is still working on her attention span. She'd rather be chatting away about anything really.



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{Soon....Outdoor Activities}

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

{On Recovery}

Seems like these days RECOVERING is a big deal! No joke. When the Hubby and I were younger..in our 20's we could go out night after night, stay out late, wake up early and keep going! Seems like the last 3 years as the years go by, recovering from a long night, or a day's event, is so much more difficult!

It takes a lot of energy makers, like rest and a ton of GREEN TEA and Vitamin B-12, to finally days later get back on track! Haha. It's life, age is age, we stay active and being tired is well, inevitable. Every weekend we say, "this weekend we will rest!" Then some really cool opportunity or idea pops up and we just must GO!

Team Gomez on the GO!

What was the point?

Oh yes, two weekends ago was Good Friday, Cami's 2nd Birthday and then Easter! SO, recovery took a little bit longer than a Monday and Tuesday..it took me all week! Then, I had tickets to attend a great event this past weekend and well we just couldn't pass it up! So, here we are in recovery mode ONCE more, haha.

What our last few weekends have looked like {Enjoy!}:

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childfest

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Monday, April 8, 2013

{The Mom Expo} Houston 2013

As a Momma I am always seeking new way to MOVE, INSPIRE and LEARN!

momexpo

Which is why when I heard that I could help spread the word about the Houston Mom Expo, I was so excited! This will be my first year attending and I am very excited to learn everything that I can and gain the information that I need to make the best decisions for my self growth and for the better of my little family! As a  fairly new Momma and a very new Stay@HomeMomma trying to make my own little way in this city,  I love these type of events, always an experience and you just never know who you will meet!

Let's get the basics and then Giveaway details!

{When} It is taking place FRIDAY APRIL 26TH 10-3pm & SATURDAY APRIL 27TH 10-4pm
{Where} Berry Center 8877 Barker Cypress Road, Cypress, TX
{Cost} Register early and get a discount: http://www.eventbrite.com/event/3791097274?ref=ebtn

For more details about the the 2-day trade-show and expo go here: http://www.houstonmomexpo.com/show-schedule/
     
Now for the Giveaway!

I will be giving away TWO-2 ticket passes! Two lucky winners will have the opportunity to not only attend the event but share the experience with their best Momma Friend! {I love sharing and I love friends!!}

Did I mention that this will be the shows first year in the Berry Center! I know this venue and I love the community it is in, I hope you will not only join us but help me in spreading the Momma Love! Enter to win below! And, oh yes, if you are not a Momma just yet, I am sure that you can benefit from this Expo as well just check out all of the great Exhibitors and Sessions planned for the two days! http://www.houstonmomexpo.com/exhibitor-list/

There will also be child friendly activities planned!

So, what are you waiting for? JOIN US!


a Rafflecopter giveaway



{Momma Disclosure: The above statements are both my true and honest opinion. This is not a compensated post. However, I will receive complimentary tickets to the show for myself and friends in exchange for posting about this event from the Houston Mom Expo in association with Hello Houston! Media Bloggers.}




Monday, April 1, 2013

{On Healing... }

Last week I read a devotional in my Bible and this is what I heard.... 


"Entering and accepting the pain, seeking direction through the pain and trusting that God has better plans in store....."


Lent is over but the lessons are still being learned...

God is good. I have faith. Things are shaky right now. But, I have faith..in restoration. In healing. In Love. I have faith.

God will heal and restore.

I have faith.

One day. No matter how long it takes. I pray.