Thursday, April 30, 2009

Vlogging

I've been tagged by Amy and here's my video.

The rules are you must post a video of yourself (or your children, if you don't have any of yourself like it is my case) and tagged 3 people and since I know 2 of my 5 followers are very busy moms I'm not going to make them do this, instead I'm just tagging my one follower left (Amy already tagged Sarah too) ... so we'll see if she'll do it. :) Not that you are not busy my friend, I know you have a lot on your plate.

I chose this video because this could really be me 29 years ago, these two men are the same men that walked me to the altar the day I married my Matt. Nope I don't have two dads, actually my dad was never on the picture that's why I chose these two wonderful guys that watched me grow, that played with me when I was little and that threw me in the air just like they are doing with my Nico here.

Enjoy!

And yes this was "filmed" in Chile.



video

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

S t e l l a n

About a month ago my friend Kelly called me and asked me to pray for this little boy name Stellan. Every since that day I've been following his mom's blog and my heart hurts and rejoices at the same time. I hurt because I can't imagine going through something like that with my infant boy, my heart rejoices because I see the hand of God in every step of this long tough road this family is going through.

Today is a crucial day for him, for them, for us who had decided to follow them on this path. Today he's going through surgery, a hard-complicated-not-recomended-for-infants surgery. He is on surgery as I type this, he's been on surgery for hours, all we know is that there is a lot of fluid on his longs and tissue, don't know anything else at this point.

I was asked to wear orange today in honor of Stellan, to let the world know we are praying for him, so I did. I pray every time I reload his mom's website and I see no update, I'm also following her on Twitter (Yes I'm on Twitter too ... I know, too much isn't it!!) no update yet.

I pray every time I see his picture, peacefully asleep minutes before he was connected to a ventilator so they could work on him, I want to cry every time I see him so innocent ... so still ... but I know God is on this one and in all children that are suffering like him, like this family. I don't think I could ever go through something like this without Him.

If you are reading this today, please Pray ... Pray Hard ... Pray like you have never done before. It is that important, it has touch me that much.

My heart goes for this boy and his family!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Appearance

What would you say if you see a mom - looking normal or as normal as you believe normal is - with a toddler, who's wearing a Halloween t-shirt (in the middle of April) and some old looking navy shorts, going into one of those grocery store where you have to insert a quarter to be able to release the baggy and then she realizes she doesn't have a quarter so she asks another lady for her baggy.
The other lady says "sure, just give me my quarter back"

Oh Sure, says the "normal looking Mom" as she starts looking for a quarter she doesn't have ... while her toddler is being a little uneasy jumping on some bars at the entrance of the store, the mom finds twenty two cents and the other lady says "Honey, don't worry about it, it's ok" with that tone of "bless your heart, I'm really feeling sorry for you" so the "normal Mom" goes into the store feeling a little weird.

Up to this point the story is fine. But what if you realized the normal mom drives a nice car, fairly new looking model Honda, carries a Blackberry on her purse ... I'm sorry what??? She has all that and her son looks all that raggedy and she can't even managed to have a quarter ... weird isn't it?

Well that normal Mom was me, the pitiful looking child was my son who decided to poop on his underwear while at daycare so for some reason the teacher decided to dress him on this "oh not matching at all" outfit (which is totally fine, I'm glad she changed him). My Blackberry is one that I got through work, I don't have to pay for it, and my car ... well my car was a very good deal, one of those that you find on this economic crisis times.

As I kept walking into the store I kept thinking how thankful I was my phone didn't ring or that she didn't see me coming out of my car ... and then I thought how appearance are so tricky and how quickly we are to judge someone by the way we dress, the car we drive, the mobile phone we use (is almost unacceptable if you don't have one these days!) and how there's always a story behind a person's appearance too. For example... the pitiful looking child doesn't always look that way and is not always dress pitifully because his parents are neglectful. Sometimes there are other reasons behind it. This situation has play in my head for a while and then I thought of a bumper sticker I saw on someone's car a while back. It was parked outside a CVS store, it was a very old looking car and the sticker said "Laugh all you want, it's paid for" OUCH ... doesn't this make you think too?

Friday, April 10, 2009

Good Friday

Obviously I didn't watch the weather forecast for today.

When I woke up this morning I could hear the birds singing, the sun was bright, such a spring filled day, so quickly I grab my new shoes (bought in my last trip to Chile), a short sleeve shirt and a 3/4 sleeve cardigan to be good with my spring weather.


As I drove to work the sky got a little darker ... and darker ... and DARKER!!!! And as I type this it feels like the sky is going to fall down on us at any moment, the rain is coming down hard ... which brings a next thought in mind ...

That day ... the day when Christ was crucified, the pain of a earthly mother (I can bear the thought) the pain of a heavenly father ... no need to say more!

When I was little, growing up in a very traditional environment, in a country where - at that point - there was no chain store, no malls, lucky to have one movie theater, the radios didn't play loud music or upbeat music I should say, instead it was all classical music, no sounds of joy what so ever, it was a day to mourn if you were a believer.

Families got together. We ate yummy treats my mom would cook or bake, the fire place was burning big fat pieces of wood, I can close my eyes and smell it, mmm ... what a comfort ... anyways, things have changed so much as I look back and realize, my hometown has now been invaded by malls, chain restaurants, chain supermarkets (Wal-Mart has even bought the biggest grocery super store chains in Chile - I know, it doesn't sound very promising, does it). So this super traditional day in the life of a believer has become a very commercial oriented day, the long weekend everyone has been looking for to get out of town ... the day to go get your hair done, to go buy something on the mall and PLEASE Let's not forget about the famous Easter Baskets that are becoming like the first part of Christmas - all over again - wow ... how things have changed.

How is it for me today? Well ... the rain has stopped some, I'm still wearing my spring clothes, I'm at work, my husband and son are at home, hopefully on their way to a bouncing place for children so he can take a long nap ... and I haven't stopped yet to think what happened today 2000 and some years ago, the only images that I can bring to mind are those from that movie (The Passion) and it hurts, it's painful to visualized, I can not imagine seeing my son nailed up in a cross ... paying for something he didn't do ... (but instead for something we all have done, still do ... everyday).

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Hard to digest, isn't it?! The greatest gift of all happened today thousands of years ago and how do we remember it? how do you celebrate it?

For the first time since Nico has been born, I bought him a few chocolate eggs and chocolate bunnies that he will go and "hunt" in our yard on Friday when the Easter Bunny comes. (Great memories of mine are those on Easter Sunday, when I went to our front yard to collect the goodies the Easter bunny left me - there was no huge basket or anything like that, a few chocolates, yummy treats, enough to make a little girl excited)

What are you doing today? this weekend?

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Tales from the Potty - Reloaded -

You may remember this post before, a very frustrated mother giving her all into this hard milestone, but today, today I shout victory!


The calendar you are seeing shows the progress of my baby pooping in the potty!!- Ok I know he's not a baby anymore -

And below you can see the author of this wonderful master piece - My baby!

The same one who announced to the whole fellowship hall last Sunday that he had poop in the potty that morning, while everyone was still eating breakfast. :)

The same one who told everyone at his cousin's birthday party that he had poop in the potty.

The same one that was put in time out twice yesterday at his preschool for hitting and pushing - ok we'll have to talk about that in another post - let's focus on the postive here!! :)

I love you son, I love your excitement about life and about your accomplishment.

I love how you get happy when other open their gifts - I love that you look forward to "talk about it" every night. (that's what we do every night before he goes to sleep, that's the last thing we do together. We talk about our day, it started when he was little, I used to tell him during his bath about the great day he had, what he had accomplished that day and all that, before he was just a little baby and probably just enjoyed hearing Mommy's voice, but now that he's older, we both actually talk about it, I ask him what was his favorite thing during this day and I go step by step naming what we did together that day).

Did I tell you how much I love you already? well it never hurts to say it one more time.

I love you my boy.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Life Lessons in the Classroom

A lot of my friends and family are in the school system. Mostly teachers, here and then I help translating a paper, a note, a report card, I interpret on parent-teacher conference and things like that. (If you are reading this and need help with translating or interpreting let me know, I'd love to help you)

Yesterday, as I help in one of those conference I was with a Father of 4 children, who lost his wife (they were separated) this past January. I remember meeting with her when the first nine weeks were over, she was so strong, so potent, so driven by the future of her children and she was very clear to let her kids know if they ever had a question they needed to ask. They did not need to sit quiet in their sit just because they were afraid to say the wrong thing or not sure how to ask. Ever since I learned this lady passed away I can't forget that meeting (I don't want to forget that meeting). Seeing the father of this children, really trying to make things better for them has got me thinking. Having that puzzled look on his face while I try my best to explain to him how in 3rd grade his daughter will be graded on letters instead of number or just passing or failing. Or what the "rubric" for the next nine weeks will be. Or the word map his daughter need to filled up in order to write a story. I'm sure it really sounded foreign to him even though I was speaking Spanish to him.

But what strike me the most about this meeting was the time when we handed him the report card, so he could read the comment on the back that her teacher has written so sweetly about his daughter. It hit me then he either needed some glasses because he couldn't see the small handwriting or he actually did not know how to read. So I gave him his pen and told him where to sign his name, he asked me twice where to sign and then he said "You know, we barely made school, it's hard for me to even write my own name" I confirmed then he couldn't read the note, so I told him writing his first name was good enough and then I told him "Let me read this to you because is a really sweet note about your daughter and you will be proud". His face lighted up and so I read.

I have not been able to stop thinking about this. How hard he's trying to make the best for his children. How God's timing in all this is amazing. This man started the process to get his parents here 5 years ago, only a few months ago things went through and his parents are suppose to be here now, now that he needs them the most, now that the mother of his 4 children is gone forever, now that he's trying to take care of them, work, help them with school even though he can't read is own language.

In my own country I know people who can't read and write, they are very old but they are the sweetest God's children I know. My great aunt, which if I ever have a daughter she'd be name after, is one of them. She managed to give her 5 kids some kind of education, they all went to school. They all have their families. Their kids went to school as well but most importantly, all of them know about God because of her. Thinking of this on my way to work, I realized, she probably has never read the bible but I know she's a prayer warrior. She wakes up early in the morning and sits in her bed and prays. She goes to sleep and the last thing she does when her day is over is pray again. :)

So back to this father. How can he learn English when he can't even read Spanish?. However that's not stopping him from trying his best to give his children a better future. He asked us what he needed to do to make sure his oldest daughter is enrolled in Middle School where she's attending next year, he also asked us how could he help his little daughter do better in her writing, that was her weakest area. I mean ... nothing is stopping him from trying harder. (see what I posted before this one?)

A while back when we met with him to see how thing were going right after the mother of his children died - he said the pastor of his church offered to give his little daughter a haircut (let me tell you it looked good, that pastor knew what he was doing). Can you imagine being in 2nd grade and loosing your mom like that? (Or Kindergarten, or 4th grade or 5th grade - that is the grade where her other children are) She went to Mexico to see if she could get better (last time she did that it really helped her) and then after a couple of weeks you find out she's dead??? I CAN'T ... not at that age. When you are a child ... when you are starting to have so many questions about life, about being a girl, about everything. WOW ... I CAN NOT IMAGINE. But that's life, we loose our love ones, we are sent to foreign land to grow family, we are strike by sweet people who crosses our paths daily.

Let's never be too busy not to take the time to think about all this. To Thank God for what we have (our capabilities), what we are and who we are becoming as we grow older.