Monday, March 28, 2016


                               ::Momma Disclosure:: This is a compensated post. All statements are my true and honest opinion. 

The Met: Live in HD 2016 onscreen performances presents- MADAMA BUTTERFLY This will be a great opportunity for families to experience the magic of the opera in their local community at prime Houston theatres, and we are giving away a family four pack to the live and encore shows!

PHASE 2 - The Met: Live in HD 2016

April 2 – 12:55 p.m. ET
April 6 – Encore Performance
Approximate HD runtime: 3:48

The title character of Madama Butterfly—a young Japanese geisha who clings to the belief that her arrangement with a visiting American naval officer is a loving and permanent marriage—is one of the defining roles in opera. The story triggers ideas about cultural and sexual imperialism for people far removed from the opera house, and film, Broadway, and popular culture in general have riffed endlessly on it. The lyric beauty of Puccini’s score, especially the music for the thoroughly believable lead role, has made Butterfly timeless.

Friday, March 25, 2016

::Camila turns 5!:: Cuando...Todo Cambio.

The last 5 years and Camila’s letter….

Camila's Journey Part 1

Camila's Journey Part 2

You can read about Camila's Birth at links above.

You can read all of Camila's letters HERE. 

A little more about Camila. You know the little 5-year-old sassy pants that lives in my house and has more attitude in that itty bitty skinny body of hers, than anyone else I know.

Sassy, yes. Attitude, yes. Bossy, Oh hell yes. Confident, pretty much. Capable, yep. Will she one day be taking names and kicking ass, I hope so.

I don't know where the last 5 years have gone but I am sure they are now lost in the infinite tantrums, eye-rolling and cussing; I mean me not the 5-year-old. Well her too, a little. Camila came into our lives as a surprise. Yes, an unplanned pregnancy!  ::insert gasps here:: When I found out I was pregnant again, I cried. Mostly tears of fear but they quickly became joy and happiness. I was scared senseless, though. My son was 10 months old. I had a horrible first pregnancy which ended with an even more horrible C-section. My Husband was a full-time student, working internships and traveled. I was about to be promoted to Assistant Supervisor at my job. I was sure the second baby would be the end of me, and guess what although the pregnancy and delivery were very similar, it was SO much easier the second time around.

How was Camila Isabel named? Well, there is this Mexican group named Camila, and when I become pregnant with Santiago they were a thing. Only I was having a boy and not a girl. So, when I became pregnant again and found out, this time, it was a girl, we knew Camila would be her name. Isabel? Well her Daddy is in love with Brad Pitt, I mean over the moon infatuated, will he hate me for saying this? Yeah, pretty much. But, it’s totally relevant to my story. Where was I? So he loves Brad Pitt. He also loves his movies, one very unknown to me was Legends of the Fall, in the movie a gorgeously mixed Native American/Caucasian little girl named Isabel Two grows up to become a gorgeously beautiful mixed Native American/Caucasian woman who marries, yep, Brad Pitt. She is killed in the movie and it's a horrible tragic love story. My Husband loves drama so he loves that movie and Isabel Two, so Camila is Isabel too.

{By the way, I have been crying the whole entire time I am typing and I can't see past my tears. This is sure to be an ugly cry moment by the end.}

Dear Camila, 

The last 5 years have gone by too fast, before you were born I wasn’t sure what to expect. Now that you have grown you are exactly what I hoped you would be. You talk for days on end. You love everyone so much, until you are angry and then we are the worse family on the face of this earth. You have a fierce intensity about you, your focus at times is tremendous. Sometimes, too intense for me. But, we manage.

Your imagination is truly awesome, you have entire conversations with your friends over a fake cell phone. You take fake selfies and text or email people while you blog and “do wo-k”. You sing in the shower which we will catch on video to further embarrass you one day. Your song selections go from the Contemporary Christian songs you hear at daycare all day to Love yourself  by Justin Bieber. Who you know is Selena Gomez’ boyfriend. You have no clue what you say sometimes but you repeat it all with such conviction, you would think that you really know about Selena Gomez and Justin Bieber’s drama.

You have now been a ballet dancer, a soccer player and currently a baseball player. You love and want to do it all, until you actually have to do it all, then you are ok with quitting to do something else. You are good at baseball. You are tall, with straight tangled hair and those long skinny legs are all the rage! We love you so much.

Since you have your brother who is now in Kinder, you too want to go to Kinder and want to do homework, ride the bus and go on field trips. Because well you love Santiago so much you want to be like him and with him every day all the time. Him, not so much, except when he is trying to protect you and make you happy. In which case you guys are best friends.

You have a ton of “best” friends, who you get over daily and then become their friends again. I guess that's how pre-school and 4-year-olds roll. You would think that you are a teenager, your thoughts are deep and your drama is very real.

You are very smart and remember people names and then ask about them randomly. You are very crafty and love to learn. You are very thoughtful, and remember things like people birthdays and likes, and on their birthdays, you want to buy them everything they like. We don’t but you would love to.

You love bright happy colors like pink and purple, because you are that happy cheerful little girl. Everything about you is girly, which is beyond me, I am not really that girly. You love nail polish, make-up and pretending that you rule the world. You are strong, and brave. You fight with Santiago and have become very tough over the years, sometimes a little too tough.

You are always sick, or so you think. At school, they call you sickie-wiki. You love being pampered and babied. Yet you are very independent and have learned to do everything Santiago does in half the time. Especially the talking. That you have down packed. You are a little Diva. You love to look pretty and wear dresses but hate brushing your hair or your teeth. Even when we threaten that they will rot and fall out, you don’t care or believe us.

You are loved. No matter what. So much. By so many of us. Don’t forget that. Ever. You tell me all the time that Jesus is in your heart and that we should not be scared. I tell you to please hold on to that. This world is not easy. Some day you will have to work hard for what you want and hold on tight to what you believe in. God will be with you.

I want you to grow up to be a courageous strong warrior who will one day rule the world. I want you to be who you are. I want you to be as strong and confident as you are today. I want you to believe in yourself and not depend on others to validate your abilities. You are strong, you are capable and you will be a warrior. These are things I tell you when you come home sad that your “friends” are being mean or don’t want to be your friends anymore. I remind you that not everyone has to like you or be your friend because that’s the truth.

I am a little harder on you some days and it’s only because I want you to do well in life. We don’t sugarcoat in our home, we tell it how it is. You and Santiago are very much the same way. Honest and raw. We love it.

And, we love you too. So much. Always remember that.

Love you,

Your Momma!

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

The Paper Files | 5 - Giveaway with Ari of 3twentysix

I love partnering with good friends. Back in 2012, I met Ari the writer of 3twentysix. After a few moments of shyness, we quickly became great friends in a sea of many. It's so important to find good-hearted honest people who will not only support and believe in you but also tell it how it is! And, Ari has been that person in my life...she doesn't love everything I do but she is honest enough to tell me when I have screwed up. 

Our connection has grown. I love her. So, no more mushy stuff! 

Giveaway time! Bravo. Ari does a series called The Paper Files, which I love and decided to partner with her on. Since Ari's birthday is this month and it also happens to be Cam's birthday we decided to go find our goodies at our favorite store, Target.  Are you surprised? Don't be. We love this place.  

We are giving away the following which Ari so awesomely wrote out for us.

From Ari's blog- 

Number Uno: A Live Daringly Boldy Fearlessly 5x8ish journal with round corners and a bookmark ribbon.

Numbero Dos: Happy Cards. A 5x3ish sized book of 30 fill-in-the-blank cards to make someone smile.

Numbero Tres: Greenroom Pink & Gold Polkadot 6x8 journal with gold spiral rings.

Numbero Cuatro, Cinco & Seis: Let's Party invitation of 10 and the pink envelopes, 5x7. Thank you cards of 10 and pink envelopes, 5x4. 10 LED string lights to hang in your office space or to lay on your desk/nightstand. 6', 2xAA batt, indoor use only.

- See more at:

Ari did a great job of taking pictures of our giveaway items. And, we couldn't leave Target without a few silly faces, which we are really good at!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

::Why Zootopia is a must see for your Family::

A feel good, all-around family friendly movie. It's what Zootopia is. And, a little truth of how conditioned my brain is. An ugly truth at that. I had no clue about this movie or what it was about, my son saw it on his first movie field trip with his class last week but I had no clue. I knew it was about a bunny who wants to be a cop, confession I thought the bunny was male. Why? Becuase it's what my brain is used to. A dumb assumption on my part, I know.

But, the movie did not disappoint. We went Sunday early afternoon since we had $5 tickets to Studio Movie grill from Groupon and they were about to expire. And, even though my son had seen the movie the rest of us had not. He tried not to spoil too many parts, exept every part he remembered as the movie played. I feel this movie captured it all, from some of the best God Father references to Shakira's hips that don't lie.

A "far-fetched" (My Husband reminds me, it's a cartoon, Connie.) child's movie, about a bunny cop, Lt. Judy Hopps, who believes anything is possible. Then proves that, yes, with respect, bravery and confidence ANYTHING is possible if we simply try. Trying and never giving up, believing in yourself and acceptance of all "animal" (human) kind is an eye-opening message that in a way brings forth the truth of current reality. While it might be easy to sometimes fall back into "old habits" that might seem, "biological" or nature driven, truth is we have evolved and we can and should move forward into a better world. Yes, a world that is messy and requires work but one that is worth hustling for!

We loved the movie. Adults can learn so much. Great lessons to learn for the whole family. We laughed even after the movie was over. The topics were all very fitting of the times we live in.

::My top 5 reasons for loving Zootopia::

1. Female Empowerment- Lt. Judy Hopps is a beautiful, strong and brave female bunny who will not give up on her dreams. What a perfect message to send to all little girls and children as a whole, that they can be anyone they want to be. And, a perfect reminder to us as Mommas to continue to feed those dreams!

2. A message of Acceptance and Inclusion-  Zootopia is a city where everyone is welcomed and accepted. The reality is that we must move forward together, as humans, to make this world a better place! We must accept those around us and know that we are ALL capable of great things!

3. Be Brave and follow your Heart-  I know that we are all born with special talents or skills, as my Cami likes to call them. We also all have a specific and unique purpose to fulfil, with an innate nature to do those things that need to be done to reach our goals and simply be ourselves. Part of being brave and filling this purpose involves listening to your heart and following it, where ever it may take you. Zootopia reminds us of such a wonderful heartfelt message.

4. Never Giving up!- Success isn't always about winning. You will fail and what's important is that you get right back up and push forward. Judy Hopps wasn't the best at everything but with hard work and constant dedication she proved herself to be a very worthy cop regardless of her size and what others thought of her because she never gave up.

5. Being kind and standing by your friends- Being a good person and backing up your friends are simple rules that will take you a long way. Supporting and believing in those around you when others don't believe in them, makes you a great friend! Building lasting friendships that revolve around trust and honesty is important for anyone as they grow.

I hope you get to see it with your kids... just a great overall family movie! Will definitely be buying this one!

Monday, March 21, 2016

Meatless Menu for Lent #HolyWeek

I grew up in a Catholic{Christian} family where we celebrated "Holy week" or Semana Santa, during this week we usually didn't eat meat. It started on Ash Wednesday and continued until Good Friday. During this season, we didn't meat on Friday's and then the entire week on Holy week. There are several items that I grew up eating during this season and that I continue to make for my own home.

They are actually some of the staple foods in our home, beans and some type of fish or meat. Very healthy and fresh. This season we haven't been very observant, as we grow in our faith and in our relationship as a family we have learned to create moments of true faith and prayer throughout the year not just during a specific season. While we are not really "practicing" Catholics, we do remain faith-filled and pray often. 

And, truly these foods are just traditional homemade foods in both my Husband's and my home growing up; which both of our momma's have made for us since we were young. We always add new items in this case baked Zuchini tots and create our own twist to these meatless foods, which we love. They are healthy and help us stay away from processed foods on Friday night, which is usually pizza night for the kids or take-out night for us after a long week of work and parent duties. But, these dishes are quick and help us stay away from "bad" foods.  

Last Friday I was off from work and I was able to make three different items for dinner that night:

  • Lentil Soup (Recipe to follow)
  • Tuna (Recipe to follow)
  • And, Zucchini Tots which I found the recipe for on a video on Facebook see below:

:: Lentil Soup Recipe::

First, place 6 to 8 cups of water in a large pot, add a quarter of a small onion, a couple of garlic cloves, about a tablespoon of oil and 2-tablespoons of chicken bouillon (Knorr) and salt to taste to the water. I cover the pot and allow it to boil.

While that boils I cut my veggies; it's like making Pico de Gallo

I dice into small pieces; 
  • 1/2 of a medium white onion 
  • 2 small red tomato 
  • About 3 to 4 green serrano or jalapeno peppers (depending on the spice/heat you want)
  • And, a small bunch of cilantro finely chopped. 
I set them aside. 

Once the water begins to boil I add a small bag of lentil beans (usually Goya brand) to the boiling water. I let them boil on medium to high heat for about 20 to 25 minutes, the lentil starts cooking similar to beans. They will become soft and tender once ready, you can taste them before you add your veggies for salt and add more if needed at this time.

Once they have boiled and are soft enough I add all my fresh veggies and simmer for about 10 more minutes until the veggies mix and are cooked. Once ready make sure you remove the lid so that the lentils don't over cook. 

When we make them on any other day we add chopped bacon to them, similar to making charro beans. If you are adding bacon make sure to fry the bacon and drain excess oil, before you add it, don't add it raw. It will not cook correctly. 

Personally, when I serve them I squeeze fresh lime juice on them.  

It truly is a very simple after work soup to make for a quick and easy meal. 

::Tuna Recipe::

The tuna recipe is something my Hubby makes and I have learned to recreate for him, also very simple. 

I boil two to three large eggs until they are hard-boiled. While those boil. 

I take a 12-oz can of tuna (of your choice) drain it and place in a large mixing bowl.

I add;

  • Chopped celery (1-2 stalks of celery) 
  • 1/2 of a small white onion diced (in this case I took a handful from the onion I chopped for the soup and set it aside for the tuna)
  • 2-3 green jalapeno peppers, and  mix it all with the tuna. 
To make the tuna creamy, I add;

  • About 3 tablespoons of sour cream 
  • 2 tablespoons of light mayo 
  • About 1 tablespoon of yellow mustard, and mix it with tuna and veggies. 
Once the hard-boiled eggs are cooked, cooled and peeled, I separate the yoke and only chop and use the whites. I mix that into the tuna. 

Done. I serve that with crackers or bread. 

And, because we love spicy food I make sure we have picked jalapenos or serrano pepper on the table when we eat. 

Finally, I also made a fruit salad that morning. It was a lot of food and we even ate some the next afternoon.  Fruit salad was diced watermelon, cucumbers and jicama. Which I added lime juice and Tajin to.

What are some of your meatless meals that you love to make?

Thursday, March 17, 2016

::How can you empower YOUNG women:: #SXSW

Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images.
Music Keynote Speaker and First Lady Michelle Obama. Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images.

Powerhouse women. That's who was united on the stages of SXSW this week. Powerhouse people, artists, creatives, and doers. As a Momma, as a Woman, as a Writer. I am affected and fully inspired by these types of events.  One of my favorite panels was Let Girls Learn Panel. Moderated by Queen Latifah. It was composed of the most epic Boss Lady/Tribe ever. Michelle Obama, Queen Latifah, Missy Elliott, Diane Warren, and Sophia Bush. I mean who wouldn't want any of the ladies sitting on stage in their corner and it got me thinking... who do I have in mine?   

You know who I keep in my corner? Women who love me and support me. People, who believe in me. People. Who want me to succeed. Those people who will look at me and be real, who will say...yeah you are crazy but go for it! I have people in my life who are honest and hurt my feelings but love me. I have people in my life who inspire me, motivate me, push me. I have people in my corner who keep me humble and remind is NOT that serious. And, who don't take me for granted. I have people in my life who allow me to be me, who allow me to miss dates or rescheduled appointments because I have a family. I have people in my life who don't create more drama and issues for me but instead, help me solve issues and give me solutions.

That is what this panel brought to mind. How can I feel empowered and in return empower the younger generation of women? More importantly, how can I empower those young women in my life, especially my daughter


"Find your passion, turn it into Action! Support your Sisters!!" -Queen Latifah

Equal rights is the work of both men and women. 

You can't look to other for a change...."Change happens on the ground!"-Michelle Obama

  • Never give up
  • Work Hard
  • Nothing will ever be handed to you
  • When others tell you, you are a nobody, show them who you are and MORE
  • Don't let anyone hold you down. 

Powerful women, empower women. 

How can you help empower young ladies in your life?

1. Be Involved- Volunteer, advocate, and support those organizations that will help young women achieve the dreams and create an impact. There are so many out there, locally and nationwide. The one presented in this panel was #62MillionGirls 

2. Tell them they CAN- Your words can make a huge difference. Encouraging young women, mentoring them and telling them that they CAN be the difference everyone speaks of, is a very important and powerful part of the puzzle.

3. Be the example- As most things happen, we must show others what we are capable of by leading and being the example that young women need. You do have to lead by example.

4. Instill an education- I say it all the time and I know that many great people have not needed schooling and are self-taught. But, when a child is taught that an education can change their lives, it helps them grow with that mindset. I want my children to know school is an option. And, when other children want an education and can't get one, then we should take advantage of that and run with it.

5. Give them options- Just as I mentioned before, we want our children to know that they do have option. If a 4 year degree isn't for them, maybe some other type of certification or enrichment programs can be obtained. And, always letting them know that they can follow their dreams by taking different paths.

6. Inspire their dreams- In that same sense, we want to feed our children's dreams, support and encourage those dreams. I want my children to know that they can do anything they want, as long as they put the work in and become educated in what they want to do.

7. Let them be creative- Allowing young women to freely express, to be creative and to know that they can express their dreams through different outlets.

8. Help them find their voice- In the same sense of feeding young ladies dreams and allowing them to be creative, we can help them find their voice through mentoring and exposure to different resources.

9. Help them produce change- And, like with anything else you want to help young ladies and walk with them side-by-side to help them achieve their dreams. Providing resources and information they need to grow and learn.

10. Be the change! -  We cannot move forward without truly creating change, unless we create action and do those things that we say we are going to do! That's what it's about.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

#IAMALLEGIANT ::DVD Prize Pack Giveaway::

::Momma Disclosure:: {This is a compensated post in collaboration with Allied Integrated Marketing All opinions and statements expressed below are my own and true and honest.} 

Have you been following Tris & Four and their adventurous love story in the Divergent series!? Do you love them as much as we do!! 
Win a DVD prize pack. 

Movie Synopsis: "After the earth-shattering revelations of Insurgent, Tris must escape with Four beyond the wall that encircles Chicago to finally discover the shocking truth of what lies behind it."

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

::Momma Wellness is Important::

                                                               {Photo Credit: Bre'onna of EightyTwo Photography}

As usual, I am inspired by women, their strength, and their story. This post was motivated by Lilly of Daily Craving as she shared her experience with PPD. Her words resonated with all the same feelings that impacted my life years ago. I have over the years shared on this blog about mental health and overall well-being as a Momma. I also recently created this video this past December, with a little more insight into my story.

As I sit and think about this post and what I should share. I get sad. I think about all those feeling and thoughts that I have experienced in that last seven years of motherhood. As Momma's we tend to lose our identity. I am guilty of it. We do so much for everyone else. Back in 2012, I was rushed to the hospital as I experienced a panic attack, it was my eye opening or awakening moment. 

We shouldn't wait for an extreme situation to learn that as momma's, wives, employees, daughters, friends, we need to take care of one person, ourselves. Being a Momma, seeking who you are, seeking your purpose, finding your own identity. It should be our priority. Because as they say if Momma ain't happy, ain't nobody happy! You will not find any of this in the outside world but inside of you. In your heart and mind. By being yourself. By seeking to be purpose filled. By not losing your identity as an individual just because you have become a Momma or Wife, or are a student or employee. This doesn't mean you can't be more. You can be. You should be. For you.

Yes, YOU can. 

This past weekend at our event we had three wonderful speakers who I feel embodied the very aspect of taking care of yourself! Today I want to share a little about them and give you their information as viable resources that you can use! Maybe you don't live in Houston but you can reach out to them on social media or seek the same type of people within your local community.

In the same fashion that it takes a village to raise a child, it takes a tribe to keep a Momma sane! 

Meet Dr. Kelley Watts, she spoke on how to transform your negative thoughts and give us tips on how to de-stress.

{Photo Credit: Bre'onna of EightyTwo Photography}

Dr. Kelley Watts
Psychotherapist & Transformational Coach

Kelley received her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from the University of Houston. After many experiences elsewhere, including Louisiana, Spain, New York, and England, she has returned to Houston and has a thriving private practice where she works with adolescents, adults, couples and families. In addition, to traditional one-on-one and family counseling, Kelley often works in groups teaching clients skills such as Positive Parenting Strategies, Building Positive Relationships, and Managing Anxiety. She uses a variety of techniques such as narrative therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy, eye movement and desensitization (EMDR), and mindfulness to work with each client in a unique and impactful way specifically tailored to their needs at that time in their life. With a passion for developing confidence and building resilience in the people around her, Kelley teaches her clients to dig deep, laugh, play, and engage in meaningful and positive endeavors. She sees people through a kind and strength based lens and is passionate about facilitating positive changes in an effective and efficient manner.

Meet Maggie Schorsch of Texas Fit Chicks, she spoke about fitness for Momma's and how important it is to her:

I'm Maggie a 39yr old mother of two. I am a senior trainer with Texas Fit Chicks boot camp. I became a trainer because I feel all women should love their bodies and know what it feels like to be strong.I have struggled with my health and weight and I know how difficult it can be. I hope to change women's lives by empowering them to be fit and healthy.

Meet Sharon Zapata, CEO & Co-Founder of The Zapata Group, she spoke on wellness over the age of 30 and how to remain motivated:

                                                              {Photo Credit: Bre'onna of EightyTwo Photography}

Sharon is a mom of two boys, married, and studied Communications at the University of Houston-Downtown. She is the CEO & Co-Founder of The Zapata Group. As a successful entrepreneur, author, speaker, and business development expert with 15 + years, her know-how for working with people of all professional backgrounds allows her to connect & offer them impressive business development contacts, customers & bottom-line revenue to build their own economies.

She has international experience as a private English Teacher for C-Level Executives in Monterrey, N.L. MEXICO and U.S. Government Security Clearance from the Office of Federal Investigation in Washington, D.C. while working for E.X.I.M. Bank. Sharon is the author of 12 Secrets for Successful Hispanic Women and How To Escape The Lack of Success...Have You Ever Been Dissatisfied?

She is the Creator & Blogger of The Bitchy Business Briefs. A business & lifestyle micro-blog. Her writing inspires entrepreneurs, out-of-the-box thinkers, creatives and action takers to spank the economy.

She recently led a media campaign: Houston's Veteran Women with her client Houston Media Network. She is the recipient of the 2014 & 2015 Excellence Award on behalf of American Intercontinental University Women's Summit and recipient of the Latina Trend-Setter Award from H.E.R.O.E.S. for her contributions to the Houston business community. She serves on the Education Committee with Susan G. Komen-Breast Cancer Foundation, The American Heart Association's Planning Committee {Latina Leadership Circle} and The Texas Alliance for Military Women {Leadership Circle}.

The Zapata Group helps to feed 300 children, women, and men at Loaves & Fishes with an amazing organization RYG {Reach Youth Global}.

Monday, March 14, 2016

::Weekend Snapshots:: Link-Up with 3TwentySix & The Reinvention of Jessica

When we created Houston Latina Bloggers the group was meant to join together local Latina writers who really wanted to engage their readers and simply be part of a culturally unique group. I feel that the purpose has definitely evolved and changed over the past few months. We seek to not only bring together local Latinas who love to write and are true social media influencers but also motivate and inspire all women to feel empowered and share their unique voice. I hope that over the next year we can further grow this sense of community and share even more. 

In the meantime, the ladies that form the group are extremely wonderful and motivate me to keep moving forward in our direction.

I couldn't do anything or make things possible without my fellow co-founders, a huge thanks as always to Ariana of 3TwentySix and Jihane of OnixJ. While I have been seen as the face and "voice" of the team, the ladies who run all the behind the scenes are incredible and truly nothing can be done without them. Their support of my somewhat out there ideas has been great and I truly see them as my Latina Tribe who have been here for me through this amazing venture and journey. Our own community of constant support and love, it's so important to what we do, to always support one another. 

Oh, weekend snapshots. Right, so this past weekend was amazing. We had a great event with amazing women involved. Wonderful sponsors such as Kroger, CHI, Define Hair Studio in Spring, Thinking Girls Boutique, and Pollo Tropical.  Two make-up artist Sylvia and Jannette, as well as three very inspiring speakers.

First up was Dr. Kelley Watts, a local family therapist who spoke on how we should not allow our inner demons to take charge of our world, and instead we should conquer them one day at a time and be confident in who we are.  Then, came a personal favorite, as she is my boot camp trainer Maggie of Texas Fit Chicks. She spoke about how she isn't the typical young trainer and how her weight struggles led her to where she is today. She confessed to having a cheat day and how she creates balance in her everyday workout routine by also indulging in those things she loves. She spoke about being motivated as a fellow Momma of Dos and growing into her true purpose. She is an amazing motivator and person. Finally, my good friend Sharon of the Bitchy Business Briefs told us a little about her daily activities keep her mentally and physically healthy and young. How she doesn't want to necessarily be young again but knows the importance of feeling great at whatever age. How embracing your age and learning to care for yourself has given her new life.

All the ladies had such wonderful stories to share, that I feel they impacted us in many ways. They gave great insights into how our overall well being affects our everyday lives as women. How negative thoughts affect our inner beauty which in return affects what we feel like and look like. And, that we should really focus on ourselves to be strong and healthy because in the end if we aren't well our lives show it and our moods can be altered in a not so good way!

The rest of our weekend was spent, with friends, resting and eating great homemade food.

{This is a Link-Up with 3TwentySix & The Reinvention of Jessica }

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

::Top 11 Things we have learned from Kid Sports::

Like with everything that has to do with our family, we knew we wanted our kids to play sports but we didn't know what to expect. We didn't know how involved we would actually become. How competitive our kids would be, even though my Husband and I are pretty competitive. And, we both agree winning isn't everything but we want to teach our kids that they can win and should win!  With that said two years ago, we started Santiago in Soccer, we become so involved that last year both the kids played and we became the soccer parents. Ricardo coached and I helped him with the organizing. 

This year we decided to try baseball. We have so far learned that baseball is no joke. The recruitment of the kids is pretty intense for 6 & 7-year-olds. Santiago was literally drafted onto a team and practice is now 3 times a week. And, even when it rains we have discovered practice still happens. Which we understand discipline and not making excuses is a big part of life itself. Which then led me to think, what have I learned the last few years as the kids have been in sports. I have compiled a list for you today. One that I wrote and one that my Hubby sent me. 

I said: 

The kids have learned more about teamwork, about how winning isn't everything and that hard work does pay off. They have learned to lose, although its not always a graceful process and some tears are endured. This is always hard as a parent. But, you can't win at everything and I know Camila and Santiago are both learning this. Slowly but surely. They both still hate losing, like duh, who doesn't! Only as a child, it's more "acceptable" for them to freely express it. They still at the end of every soccer game congratulated the winners no matter what! As a parent, we got into the game more than the kids did. So we also had to learn to control the emotions. A little. 

The kids have learned that we need to create priorities, do they want to lounge around on the couch or go play with their teammates. Sure, these are pretty fickle priorities but making their sport their number one priority helps keep them focused on what needs to be done. They know that some nights going to practice was a little more important than staying home. As a parent, the lesson of adult time vs spending time on the fields becomes very clear. Family and sports, in this case, come first. 

It creates formal schedules that we have to keep up with and adhere to. The kids learn what days their practice and games are on. They would prepare themselves from the moment they woke up to go to school. They knew they had things scheduled and it helped them learn days and times. As a parent, it helps keep you organized by having to keep up with practice and game days. Teaches all of us the importance of keeping a good schedule. School, practice, dinnertime, bath time, & bedtime. We keep some pretty good schedules once the season kicks off. Baseball has been far more time consuming but we should be good! 

::Meeting new Kids::
While our kids have daily friends that they make at school and daycare, I like the fact that they step outside their social circle and comfort zone. In life, they will have to learn that their circle should be much larger than their everyday interactions. These interactions help them be less shy, more interactive wth kids they wouldn't usually meet and open to relationships with children from all walks of life. Much like in the grown-up world. Your circle of "friends" shouldn't always be the same five people you went to high school with, the world is SO much bigger than that. I want my kids to know this and be aware. 

::Meeting new parents::
In the same sense, I am used to talking to the same group of friends, or co-workers. Playing sports helps us build a new support system and a new circle of parent friends. Sports parents have the same commitments as you and the same dedication. Which might make them different from your everyday circle. As sports parents, we share a common interest and goal. The mindset is a little more focused and it helps keep you accountable. Some sports parents are either new like you and you can both learn as you go or they might be seasoned parents and can teach you the in's and out's of the game. Both are great to have!

Now my Husband's list.... 

He said:

::Builds Character, Discipline, and Confidence:: 
Agreed it really does, especially an already confident child who needs that extra boost. Or a somewhat shy child, who needs exposure to public events, speaking and exhibit. My kids are very good at showing off at home and being silly but we don't want them to be scared or shy in public. So, sports are helping with all this. 

::Good exercise and keeps them Active:: 
Very true and important. If my little couch potatoes are not pushed to do something outside they are quite content with being indoors and lounging. As parents we must show them that staying active is good and healthy for you. Plus being indoors with two toddlers all the time is nuts. They need the energy outlet. We don't' mind it. It helps us remain active as well. 

::Quality time and fun for the Family:: 
Our weeks become so busy with work and other adulting that we can forget about creating that quality time and bond with our little families. It's so necessary. Sports have helped remind us how important this is and how much we need it. 

::Keeps them competitive::
Again this is something that my Husband and I both agree on. While winning isn't always everything, reminding our children that they can win, that they should strive for their best and that they can be competitive is good for them! Life is tough and teaching your kids to rise to the occasion is always good. 

::Gets this Momma good picture for her blog:: This is true. A lot of my content comes from my children and the activities that we do. Sports are one of those "perks" to my blog that helps me gain valuable material to write about. I love it. 

:: Entertaining:: Because of their age and the fact that they are learning the sport, it's hilarious to watch and very entertaining as parent spectators. As parents, it can be a little frustrating because you want them to do well but once you see them in action you learn to relax and simply enjoy it all!