Have you noticed how things can easily piss you off as an adult? If only we could keep our childlike attitudes, and be more easy going. One of the things I miss about being a kid is not having to worry so much about things like we do now as adults. Let nature takes it course, let things fall into place, let what’s meant to be, be. Naturally everything will work out for the best right? Wrong! Don’t burrow your eyebrows. Hear me out. As a parent, now that we are grown, we need to enforce the rules, make sure that the environment we have for our children is one that allows them to be carefree and happy. So yes it is nice to let go a little as adults, but we also have responsibilities that little ones do not and should not have. We have to make sure that they are safe and feel safe. We have to not only tell them but show them to be kind, polite, to share, to think, to feel safe talking to us. So while they are outside running around or jumping in the pool, always keep your watchful eye on them, because they are allowed to be carefree only during these years. When teenagedom and adulthood hit them, it will all be different then. So have fun, smile, live life like it’s going out of style, but remember to raise the little ones with love, understanding and with rules. Life gets tougher, our decisions impact our futures and we have to prepare them for this. Parenting is difficult but coming from a place of love can’t steer you wrong. Talk to you kids and help them understand why we do what we do and are how we are, it will only benefit you.
Summertime, a time for spontaneity, adventures and discovery. So why am I experiencing Mama’s summertime blues? Because as a full time parent, I miss out on the opportunities to do these things in the summer. My kids know that mommy and daddy have to go to work, but it lays heavy in my soul, some times more than others, that we don’t get to make as many special memories because of the lack of time. Yes I am aware, to make the moments we do have together special, and I’m aware of being grateful and looking at the bright side, but right now I just want to gripe okay? At times I want more than evenings and weekends. My mom made a good point the other day and it had me in a pensive state. As I grew up, my mom had to work all the time, sometimes crazy hours and we had to make due somehow. First I went to summer camp at the Ywca and had a wonderful time, and then as I got older, I stayed home and watched my little sister and cousin. I don’t remember spending that much time with my mom. Now as a grandparent, she gets to spend so much time with my kids, more than I do at times. So as a grandmother, she gets to enjoy her grand-kids more than she did her own kids. Deep! And so is life, the cycle of motherhood.
While I yearn to be with my babies when I know they are off from school I accept that such is life. I have to make due with the time I have and make those summertime memories in the evenings and weekends. To working parents out there, how do you handle these mixed emotions of being a being pulled in two different directions? How do you find a work/life balance that satisfies your soul?
Do you have a hard time keeping the kids educated during the summer time? I find it’s difficult to keep them in a learning mode when it’s all about play time and no school. Above is a regular evening of sitting him down to do some math, not so happy face. I can’t blame him, they work hard throughout the school year. I remember how much fun our summers were as kids, but I also didn’t have such a hard time picking up things I’ve learned like my son seems to have. So it’s something I struggle with. I’ve started making it a part of our weeks. At least every other day, which I believe is fair, we make sure to read, write and do math. After all practice is what keeps us up to date on things. Some days he fights this more than others, but parents can’t give in. I have to be stern about it or he’ll always try to wiggle his way out of it. The other day I said, let’s play school and this was such a hit. We took about an hour and I had my son and daughter play the students. I was Mrs. Studdlemuffin, but they didn’t like that name lol. So I shortened it to mrs. Muffin. It was funny to me and they smiled at it. We did some homework, had a pretend recess, had a fake trip to the zoo, had science class, did more homework, fake lunch, more homework and then it was time to go home. Of course we shortened the time for everything, first homework page was about 10 minutes, fake recess was about 5 minutes, fake zoo trip was checking out our dogs who were pretend lions and tigers and then going outside and looking for lizards and beetles, 10 minutes. You get the point, make it fun. Lunch was a quick snack of grapes and strawberries and by the end of the hour, we had done some educational work and had fun along the way.
All the girls are raving about Queen Elsa’s coronation braid from the Disney hit movie Frozen. There are a ton of tutorials out there to follow. The other day I made the mistake of showing my four year old a pin I found that I could not wait to try on her. Apparently she could not wait either, she needed it now! As in then and there at 9pm after her bath with no where to go but straight to bed. Being summer and all, I gave in, partly because I was hoping to have a peaceful evening without any whining and partly because it was good to practice. Here’s what we came up with. It always helps to have clean hair, combed well without any knots. I made a side braid with some loosened hair to the front because Addison doesn’t have bangs, but Elsa does in this pic. Elsa has a twist, but remember this was just a quick practice run. Then I braided the other side and tied both ends in the middle like a tiny loop, but she was worried about the front, it had to be just right. Next time it will be a swept up side like the actual Elsa, but this was a good shot if you ask both of us. What do you think?
I don’t know about you but I am highly disappointed to hear all of the JayZ/Beyonce Divorce and Cheating Rumors. Everyone is still speculating about Solange kicking Jay’s azz on that elevator but things just don’t make sense. Why in the world would Beyonce stay so calm and collected IF Solange was sticking up for her? I don’t see that. I mean I have kicked azz for my sister and it was really the one and only time I threw down hardcore and all but she was in the fight too. She wasn’t just standing there like a fly on the wall. What I find ironic is how her songs seem a bit desperate, gone are the empowering songs like, Irreplaceable, Me, Myself and I and Single Ladies. Now she’s talking bout drunk in love and even in the video she looks like shes sending a message, this is MAH MAN Bi*ches! Don’t you agree.
And then in her song, Partition, she’s saying, I just wanna be the kind of girl you like. What? Bey.. come on now, you should already be the kind of woman he adores. I can’t understand why JayZ would step out on this beauty and yes I know that beauty is only skin deep, maybe she’s not nice, but I find that hard to believe. She’s always been pleasant in interviews and seems so down to earth and I would lose even more faith in Men and their abilities to be faithful.
Only time will tell, in the meantime, I still can’t wait for the tell all book in 20 years that will really tell us what went down in that Elevator when Solange went all Ninja on Jigga man!
In the middle of trying to decide on a permanent URL name for my blog, I find myself trying to identify myself even further. This blog started with a story I wrote in a writing class because I want to eventually write a book. Ever since I was a little girl in elementary school, I enjoyed writing. Reading and getting lost in books was a piece of heaven for me. Then learning I could do this, what a light bulb moment. But in this year of blogging, I’ve realized I’ve stopped thinking much about my dream of writing a book and that made me sad. Follow your passion they say, do what you love they say, your good at it they say. I can say that writing here and now contributing articles to Beinglatino.us are actually baby steps towards this dream of mine. Practice makes best right? I just need to start putting a little more effort into researching how to get my first book out and I need to do it soon. I am resourceful and I can do this!
This is week 2 of summer camp in year 2. What does this mean? Remember my post about my fear of summer camp and the anxiety I passed on to my son last year? (Read that post here). Well this is my son’s 2nd year and it’s been great! Well, almost! He hasn’t cried once and he’s had a good time on the day trips. But in the first week, he said that a girl told him and his friend about how she was naked in the pool with a boy kissing and how she made him promise her that he would marry her. My son is 7 so why is a first/second grader talking about this?! So I asked him about this girl, what’s her name, how old is she, who did she kiss, is the boy in your school, was it during a trip, followed by trying to explain this to him. I asked what he and his friend said, and the response was probably more age appropriate, he said his friend told the young girl that he was going to sabotage their wedding by throwing poop on them! Are you cracking up, oh my jeez, kids!
He claims that this young girl was supposed to be a fifth grader that stayed back to 1st grade, I did not believe him. This is not funny, how is it even possible, can a kid stay back that long? I asked him to show me who she was the next day and to my shock, she really did look like a 5th grader that stayed back to the 1st grade because she was HUGGEEE as in older looking, not chubby, and she was sitting at the 1st grade table. I don’t get it!!!! As you know parenting doesn’t come with a manual so I wasn’t sure how to address this and I’m sure many of you will disagree with me, but I just told him to avoid any conversations about topics like the one she shared and to always tell me and ask me anything. No new stories so far, but let’s see how the rest of the week goes.
These two thirty one bags are easy to pack and carry tons of stuff, must haves for me and our vacation. I was able to make this small duffle like bag (with no top) flat and packed into the suitcase and could use it to bring our sunblock, towels, extra clothes to the pool, without worrying about carrying a bunch of heavy stuff. My polka dot bag, just made traveling so simple with the inside and outside compartments. You can shop these products here.
My Olay Fresh Effects BB Cream with SPF 15 was all I needed for cover up. No heavy foundations in that humidity in Punta Cana or in Florida where I live, just sheer coverage with sun protection. And Mascara, all I need to brighten up my eyes. Flamed out and lovely, thank you Cover Girl and P&G.
My husband, two kids and myself spent 5 days in beautiful Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. We flew in from Fort Lauderdale on JetBlue on a quick 2 and a half hour plane ride. With two little inpatient children, the TV per seat on JetBlue is so appreciated. Just bring your headphones or earpieces and you can be sure they will be quiet in their seats. The fact that JetBlue allows you to bring one free bag along with the one carry-on is a plus for us as well. Once we arrived it was time to find a taxi, it was pretty simple since we speak Spanish, but even if you didn’t there were taxis being offered to almost everyone. $40 dollars from airport to hotel. When we got to the hotels entrance, it was an open space like many of the hotels on islands and they greeted us with drinks. Check in was pretty simple, we were taken to our room and it was impressive, Jacuzzi in the middle of the room, towels cutely shaped into swans, flower petals and nice cool AC. Each room has a deck with two chairs and a Jacuzzi. The closet space was very spacious, there was a mini fridge with waters and two sodas and two presidente beers, each replaced daily, included with the room.
A few hours after arriving we met up with my dear friend Lucy and her family. Her husband and two kids and my husband and two kids quickly flocked to one another. It was awesome to be reunited after 3 years. We ate at the buffet, and since it was our first meal, we were starving. The food was good at that moment, the kids ate rice, chicken and fries. Then it was on to the beach. A lovely blue wavy ocean with palm trees growing in the sand, tikki umbrellas and lounge chairs everywhere. We got in the water immediately since it was at a great temperature. The waves were stronger than what we were used to, as we usually go to Sanibel or Fort Myers beach where the waves are almost non existent off of the Gulf. We decided to go check out the pool because my kids began feeling itchy, maybe jellyfish, not sure. The pool was ginormous, as long as the hotel grounds. There was a swim up bar right in the middle and a giant Jacuzzi open to the pool so it was easy to get in. The drinks were decent, they were yummy, my favorite was amaretto sour and pina coladas.
Entertainment at the hotel was awesome, great music, and karaoke night, in which my daughter sang Wide Awake by Katy Perry in front of over a hundred people. One night they had a Michael Jackson show and wow, I truly felt like I was at a real concert, dope dancing, amazing choreography and nothing could beat the zombies in the crowd during Thriller. They have a small casino onsite, we played roulette one evening and had fun, not because we won but because it is such an exciting game. The slot machines looked a bit corny but if that’s your thing, then rest assured it’s available. They have a kids pool area called kids splash and offer babysitting for $15 an hour per child. The two ladies that were there seemed friendly and pleasant and definitely good with kids but we did not use the services. This pool area was a bit aways from the regular pool but we did spend an hour or so there. The kids didn’t mind hanging at the big pool at all.
We went on two excursions, snorkeling and ATV Riding. I think the snorkeling was overpriced at $140 for a family of 4. It was a 30 minute boat ride to a coral reef area where there were a lot of other boats and many people snorkeling around the same area. In that sense it felt safe, though you had to be very careful not to cut yourself on the reef in some of the more shallow parts. My friends husbands knee was bleeding after he scraped it swimming by. My 4 year old did amazingly well, probably the best snorkeler out of all 8 of us. I was doing more looking around for dangerous fish (aka sharks) rather than admiring the cute tropical fish near us. Kids enjoyed it and it was an unforgettable experience for them so that’s all that matters. My son fed the fish bread and the fish swarmed to us giving them an even more up close and personal experience. Once back on the boat, the driver took us to see a sunken ship, which was not part of the tour, but he was being nice, I could have done without it, because he had to slow down and the smell of the gas and the waves pushing us up and down got me sea sick. Once back at the hotel it took a few minutes for me to feel better.
The first night there we went to eat at the Chinese restaurant and it was thee worst of all the places they had, and so we didn’t eat well that evening. The next night we had Japanese/Hibachi and this food was good. It didn’t taste 100% Japanese but it was good nonetheless with much flavor. The next few days we had buffet from the two different buffet locations they had for breakfast lunch and dinner and it was not so good. For us adults, we could deal, there was something we could find to satisfy our hunger, but for my picky children, it was basically rice, chicken and fries daily ;( . The cereals were not fresh, they seemed very old and not even generic quality. The French toast was thicker than a tire wheel (ok exaggerating) but still, eggs that were pre cooked looked crazy old, sandwich breads were stale, and so for my kids, it was the same thing every day and that was not cool. I had bought one pack of ritz crackers and would have brought more but the hubby told me it was dumb to bring food to an all inclusive, I should of followed my mothers instincts. I also brought two small yogurt hard snacks (luckily) and they were gone by day 2. I brought two ensures for kids and wish I had bought more. So if you are travelling with picky eaters, pack a few snacks, don’t go crazy, but bring stuff that will satisfy their cravings when there may not be enough variety. My kids are used to having milk at night and I asked the bar for milk which they provided but it tasted more like creamer, either way my youngest drank it and didn’t have any stomach issues so that was good. My kids favorite drink is lemonade but it was mega sugary so I made sure my kiddos drank as much water as possible.
Okay so ATV riding was $55 per person for what was supposed to be 4 hours, but it was 3 hours. They told us it included water and chips neither of which we received, so that was jacked up. So it was fun, something cool for kids to experience and here are my thoughts on this excursion:
- The black seats of the buggy rides were HOT, like burning like a motha flower HOT, and they were wet, so yeah yuck and ouch.
- They sell bandanas for good reason, you will get mud in your mouth, your eyes, your nostrils, everywhere, come prepared.
- Wear clothes that you are okay throwing out because it is possible that you will get sooo muddy you can’t even clean it off.
- The vendors you see on this little tour are expensive as hell! Dayam, I mean ridiculous, I understand they are trying to survive but uh uh!
- The beach they take you to, Bavaro, is so amazingly beautiful and breathtaking, I wish they gave us an hour there, which SHOULD have been included since it was supposed to be 4 hours, but we were rushed back to the ATVs after maybe 10/15 minutes. Shame.
- At the first stop there were children offering us flowers in exchange for a dollar, now this tugged at my heart and I was happy my children got to see this. One little girl had holes in her shirt so we gave her the extra shirt I brought along for Addison, the look on her face was priceless 🙂
- If you bring kids, cover them up well, I think this long time in the sun is where my daughter got Sick from too much sun exposure, I wish I had another layer on her, that’s all.
So the trip was overall a success, amazing customer service, great workers and lovely grounds. My only complaint would be the quality of the food, maybe they need new chefs but other than that, it was fine. On the very last day I explored over to the hotel next door since they were connected by a walkway which I did not know about and found stores on their side that sold Doritos, candies, and other chips. I bought my kids a bag of Doritos for 3 dollars and it was not as cheesy, so I think products are just made differently there. When it was time to get a taxi to the airport, we realized we needed more cash. We took out 300 Dominican pesos from the ATM which was only about 7 American dollars because we totally miscalculated. It was 43 per dollar so we needed $1,700 Dominican Pesos to pay the cab. The ATM wouldn’t let us take out more money because we did not tell our bank we were traveling. We had to stop at a bank and use my card, but luckily we got the money we needed. When we got to the Punta Cana airport we were so happy to see Wendys, we rushed to get the kids food, yummyyy lol. Needless to say, while it was a lovely vacation, we were happy to get back to our home sweet home. If you have any questions or would like more info, please let me know.