Thursday, December 2, 2010

Busy, Busy, Bee!

I cannot believe that it has been over two weeks since I last posted. But I must say that as usual, life happens and I have been busy. I have been busy with work, school and Ms. Olivia. I got my Associates Degree from University of Phoenix and now I am working on my Bachelors. We had Olivia's Birthday Party too, which I still have to tell you about. We had my nephew's birthday party before that.

We have also been busy trying to get the apartment clean. Now, it is not dirty but more not "perfect". So why am I on this sudden clean kick you may ask? Well it all started on Thanksgiving...

And on that note, since I have not yet posted about Thanksgiving, you will have to wait. I will need to post about that first so that you understand. So I guess I should end this with a...


Friday, November 19, 2010

There's an "I" in Family??

I am pretty sure we have all heard the saying "There is no 'I' in team" but what about the saying "There should not be an 'I' in family" which I totally just made up. I am constantly fighting an internal battle with myself regarding family. Whether it is my family or Anthony's family, there is ALWAYS something. It ranges from someone being mad at us for doing something or someone being mad at us for not doing something.

The thing I have come to learn is that for some reason, there are family members who are more concerned with themselves (that is the I part) than anyone else. It is more about how are they going to benefit from something. There is always and excuse as to why they can not. There are times when people that are not even family get treated more like family than the real family does.

They are those who only call when they want something or want to gossip about something. They are the ones that get made because you have not called them but they do not realize that it works both ways. They are the ones who do not always have time for you but are quick to get made when you spend time with other family who really care.

I learned a couple of months ago I learned a hard lesson. I learned that sometimes you can not even depend on family, not matter how close. So, instead of being like the others and focusing on just the 'I' in family, I will focus on the whole word.

F - Fun
A - Always going to be your family
M - Mistakes are forgiven
I - Invest in time with one another
L - Love and Loyal
Y - Yours whenever you need them

What do you think of when you think of the word family?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Birthday Girl!

"Good Morning Olivia, time to wake up!"
"But mommy I'm tired."
"Look, I'm up now."

That is how this morning started. Today my little princess in training is 4 years old. It seems like yesterday that she was just born. It was exactly 1:19 a.m. that my 8lb, 20-in long baby girl was born. After a week past her due date and 21 hours of exhausting labor due to her stubbornness (that she still practices to this day), she entered this world. Even at first glance, I knew she was going to be my little "Mini Me".

It is true what most parents say, "Don't blink or the next thing you know, they are all grown up". I remember rushing through that first year of her life. Wanting her to hurry up and be able to eat baby food. Hurry so that she could crawl. Wanting to rush to hear her say "Mama or Dada" for the first time. Wishing that she would start walking. Anxiously waiting for her to talk and form sentences. All those milestones I wanted to hurry up and experience, are now the ones I want to go back and remember.

Now I am preparing myself for the days of not wanting mommy to give you a goodbye kiss. The times when she no longer wants to sit and cuddle with me. The time that is gonna come when she is actually embarrassed by my presence (but I am already making a vow not to be one of THOSE moms if you get my drift). When everything I say is wrong, even though I am telling her for her own good.

This birthday wish that I am secretly making on her behalf is to stop and really experience, enjoy, cherish and live every single moment that we spend together.

Happy Birthday Olivia!! Mommy and Daddy love you more than you know!!

Olivia's 1st Birthday!!

Monday, November 15, 2010


For some reason Olivia enjoys being naked. I mean, the child shuns clothes like it is a plague. This girl is so into being "free" that the other day, within 1 minute of being home she had already stripped down to her birthday suit. My jaw dropped and I laughed so hard. I told her to go put on a t-shirt and some underwear at least, which caused her to stomp, pout and finally do what she was told. This incident, along with the others, raised the question of where did she get this from? I thought back and remembered the first time I met Anthony's father's side of the family...

A few years ago, Anthony and I went on a week long trip to Louisiana. We went to visit a friend and for me to meet his father's side of the family for the first time. I am sure you can guess that I was pretty nervous, but I was also excited at the same time. We decided to drive down with two of our friends that we worked with at Olive Garden at that time. Mainly because we were going to see the brother of one of the friends and the brother was our friend as well. Did I confuse you enough?

Anyway, it was a long 18 hour drive that I will never forget. That was my first and last experience with Red Bull (I will always be a coffee girl!). When we got there we went to our motel, which happened to be right next to a crack house/area. So, because we were all really nervous about that, we rented one room and all four of us crammed in there with EVERYTHING that we brought (including the car radio).

The first few days we did some touring and eating (actually we ate the whole time because you can not get southern food that good unless you are in the south). We finally went to visit his family and I loved them from the moment we said hello. There was no awkwardness or nervousness, they felt just like they were my family that I have known for a long time. They showed me pictures, took us around to see other family and then the stories.

The one thing that stumped me for a while was that they kept calling Anthony "Butt Naked Butt". I kept wondering why but was too scared to ask. Finally, they told me the story about how Anthony aka B.N.B., never liked to keep his clothes on. He always wanted to run around the house with nothing on but what God gave him. I laughed and enjoyed the fact that I had a knew nickname for him.

Ever since then, I do call him that whenever...well you know what I mean. But now I see that we will have to pass that name on to Olivia. Or at least call her B.N.B. J....Butt Naked Butt Jr.!!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

"Trash or Treasure"

Okay, so I completely understand that toys are pretty much the unspoken treasure for kids. No matter how big or small, if it is a toy...they love it. I mean, even if it is not a toy at all but something someone gives them to play with, it's treasure. I will give you the perfect a doctor's office one time when Olivia was almost two years old. The doctor gave here this crazy looking glasses. They had clear lenses and thick black rims. They were something they used and were disposable so they had no problem giving them to her. Fast forward about two years later...Olivia still "plays' with those glasses.

Now you may be wondering about the whole point of this post and now I am going to tell you. While toys are treasure for kids, for some moms like me they can become trash. For some reason my daughter has inherited the need to keep everything. And no, she does not get that from me or Anthony. It's the strangest thing but this girl will play with a toy that she has from birth. I mean, the toy that is really just a rubber ring for her to chew on. She turns it into a bracelet!

So I am assuming many of you are probably thinking that it is a good thing that she plays with all of her toys still. Well let me tell you, it is not. Because she likes to play with everything, everything stays all over the place. Her floor, the living room floor, the dining room floor, our bedroom floor, our bed. You name it and there is more than likely a toy there. Olivia loves playing with her toys but just like any other kid, she does not like cleaning them up.

Now, I warn you that if there are any children present you may want to have them stop reading at this time...

Today was the day that I had enough. No more tripping over the purse straps and dress up accessories. No more getting stabbed in the toe by pencils, pens and markers. So over stepping on and then screaming at the top of my lungs, the four identical toys she got in a McDonald's happy meal. And who wouldn't love rolling over (in their own bed mind you) onto a naked Barbie. That's right...I put my foot down (in a safe spot mind you) and grabbed a trash bag.

I went into Olivia's room and threw out every happy meal and/or combo meal toy. Trashed the books that were missing pages. Naked Barbies with hair so tangled that you need scissors to fix...gone. I went in with one of those giant black lawn trash bags and left with every piece of "trash/treasure" in it. Oh, and those dear sweet glasses from the doctors office...well, all I have to say about them is R.I.P.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

"Christmas Tree!!"

I remember Olivia's first Halloween just like it was yesterday. Dressed as the cutest little bumblebee! Which by the way, I got last minute at Toy's R Us for $7!! The costume was great, except for the wardrobe malfunction that happened once we got to the mall to go trick-or-treating. The wings fell off and as it comes with the mommy territory, I had to find a quick That's right, I stopped at a store and asked them to borrow their stapler so that I could staple the wings back to the straps (I guess you get what you pay for).

That year she hadn't really grasped the concept so Anthony and I did most of the candy grabbing which did not pay off. I think she got a total of ten pieces of candy that year. Which was probably a good thing for her and my figure! The next year she went as a Dallas Cowboys cheerleader (that's right...this is a Dallas Cowboy lovin' family!). That was the first year we went trick-or-treating with my friend Janice and her two girls.
That year was great because she kind of got the hang of it and a lot of candy to go with it. You see, my friend Janice lives in Ashburn which is what can be considered "Trick-or-Treat Heaven" for little kids because there are lots of house and lots of candy. I mean, there are some that give out Full Size candy bars. Last year had to be the best by far. Olivia went as a lion...

It was nice that night and we were ready and knew where to hit first in Ashburn. Even Olivia was ready to hit the ground running! We started at 6:00pm with smiles on our faces, bag (and back up bag ready!) and went to the first house. Olivia walked up to the first house and when they opened it she said as loud as she could "Christmas tree!!!" and held out her bag. We all laughed so hard, even Olivia because she had no clue why we were laughing. The people at the house that it was so cute that they gave her extra candy. Last year, we had so much candy that her bag was too full that we had to use the back up bag. This year she decided to be a princess...

We were running a little late this year but even with an hour less than years past...she still hit the candy jackpot.

Now, you can't really tell that well from the picture but the pile of candy is actually about four inches high. As you can see, her and daddy were pretty happy with their spoils! So much for loosing those extra pounds. Initiate candy coma! 

Saturday, October 30, 2010


Saturdays at my house usually begin the same way. Around 7:30 in the morning, Olivia comes in and almost always says the following "Mommy, I want some cereal please. My tummy is hungry." which is followed by me or Anthony saying "OK, in a minute". This Saturday started a little different. Anthony was up because he had to go to work which meant I got an extra hour of sleep!

So, Olivia and I shared some cereal and watched her favorite cartoon, Spongebob Squarepants. She then asked me if we could go for a walk. For some reason, Olivia really likes to take walks no matter the weather. I am not really sure why, but I sometimes wonder if it has to do with the fact that during pregnancy Anthony and I took a walk almost every night after dinner. Or, maybe it's because as a baby we took a lot of walks with her too. Either way, it is not uncommon for her to ask. I told her we would go in a little while.

Around 12:00 we got her shoes on, brushed our hair and got ready to go. Now, for those who know me, I love taking pictures. I worked part-time at two different studios for the past four years, just recently leaving one. Because of that love, I thought to myself this would be a great day to get some pictures. We headed out the door and began our walk.

I thought I would ask Olivia to give me some shots over by some trees. Here is what I got...

Now parents of photographers know that kids of photographers usually go through a phase where they "hate" the camera. They usually run, complain, whine or even give the usually fake "cheese" smile. Olivia did all of the above. I decided to just let her do her thing and catch some shots if I could. We headed to the playground and that is when the fun began...

To me, the best part of our walk was when Olivia went squirrel chasing. As she was playing on the playground she started noticing the little furry friends running around the trees. And for some reason, like the dog in the movie Up, Olivia would stop what she was doing, yell "Squirrel" and chase after them. I laughed so hard as she kept trying to catch them...

While she didn't catch any of them. I can say without a doubt that she had fun and so did I. It was a great Saturday afternoon spent with my "mini me"!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

When Goats Attack...??

For some of us, before we become parents we like to think of all the possible things we are going to do with our children. We try and say that we are going to make every game, play recital, chorus performance and occasionally we throw in the field trip. Well, Olivia is not at many of the stages I mentioned above but she is at the one for going on class trips with her daycare center. This would be her first so I decided that I was going to make every attempt to go with her. Let's just say that after two reschedules by the center, it finally happened.

Today was the day I went with Olivia to her first field trip and it was to Cox Farms. Neither one of us had ever been, I have heard so much about how much fun it is. There is a hay ride, free pumpkin, slides, free pumpkin, animals, free pumpkin, music stage...wait, did I mention the free pumpkin? Yes, I was most excited about receiving a free pumpkin at the end of the trip and the keyword was free.

Now, just to give some visuals here, it read ALL day yesterday and it was pretty warm. They had already cancelled due to rain the day before so I was thinking they were going to cancel again. Well, woke up today and it was nice, sunny and in the 70s. I was ready to go and prepared to get a little muddy. We started with the slides, which each kid had to ride each one at least twice to satisfy their "need for speed"!

Once the sliding was done we walked over to see the pigs...

As you can probably gather from the "smell"...I mean pictures, you get the point. They smelled horrible given the heat, mud and hay. Following the pig visit, there was a trip to see the cows and guessed it, goats. Now, I am not familiar with any farm animals except for what I read or hear or see on TV. I figured that they were like I had perceived them which was that they rammed people. I guess this goats were friendly because they had them set up in the Goat Village. You could go inside and feed them. So we got the food and headed in with the kids. I was handed the bag of food to distribute to the kids so that they could feed the goats (boy did I regret that job).

As soon as we got in with the kids we were surrounded by "hungry" goats who knew exactly what was in the brown paper bag that I was holding. Let's just say, I turned to the fours kids next to me to try and get them ready and when I turned back around...can you guess what was in my face? No...well let me tell you, I was face to face with a goat. It had put it's to front legs on me and was trying to get the food. Turned back around and another goat had done the same. At that point, another parent was shouting for me to just dump the bag of food on the ground and let's head out. No matter how fast I was throwing that bag around, the goats would not let up. The kids started crying and the goats just kept on coming. I finally emptied the bag, grabbed the child next to me and we hurried out. Remember the part about mud...well, I was the only one from the trip that ended up being layered in mud.

After that, we did our hay ride, ate snack and went down another slide. At that point it was time to head back to the center so that the kids could have lunch. Then kept the part I was most excited for...pumpkin...I mean "free" pumpkin time! The rule was one pumpkin per person which made me even happier. So, at the end of the day what did I learn...

Entry into the farm...$9
Food for the hungry goats...$1
Being "attacked" by hungry goats in mud...priceless!

But, at least Olivia and I got what we were really looking for anyway...

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


Ok, so many of us that use computers on a daily basis know the timeless "fix all" function for computers is usually "Ctrl+Alt+Delete". This is the magic function that is "supposed" to fix almost anything that is wrong with your computer. System freezes..."Ctrl+Alt+Delete". Get an error..."Ctrl+Alt+Delete". Child jumps on CPU..."Ctrl+Alt+Delete". Computer gets infected by a bunch of different viruses..."Ctrl+Alt+SOL".

I have had my desktop computer for almost nine years now and of those nine I have probably used it for two of them. Why you may ask? Didn't not have regular Internet for most of the time, which would have been the main reason for using it up until now. I am currently going to school and need a computer more than ever. So I dug out my Dell and hooked it up! It worked fine for the past year, that is until...that's right you guessed it, it became infected! Whenever I try to get on, I get a big black box that says "STOP, your system has been infected...". First thought was "Yay, new computer" and then reality sunk in which was "With whose money?"

On that note, computer shopping began and I realized my dream computer would be an IMac (they are so beautiful!). Again, reality sunk in and a PC was it. We have been to Best Buy,, Wal-Mart, etc. and finally took the hint that we do not have the budget for a new computer right now. So, Anthony and I decided that the next option would be to purchase some Antivirus software and try and fix it ourselves.

This past Sunday we went to Best Buy and purchased the latest Norton Antivirus software. I was excited to get home, pop it in and show those viruses who the boss was. Boy was I wrong! I couldn't even get it installed. I called the company that makes Norton and conversation below...

"Yes, I am calling because I purchased your software because my computer has been infected and the problem is that I can not even load it."
"Ok ma'am, I know exactly what the problem is. The software is to "prevent" attacks and your system has already been infected. We can "easily" fix this by having one of our technicians completely clear out your system, wipe the hard drive and install the software. It will be as if your system was brand new!"
"Ok, great! When do we start." And here comes the kicker...
"No problem, we can get started right away. We offer this premium service for $139.99."

And with that, I politely said no thank you and hung up the phone. (Ok, for those who really know me I kind of let out some sarcasm and then hung up the phone). Then like in a cartoon, that little light bulb went off over my head and I realized that I should just ask my IT guy at work.

Went in this morning and got some advice and a CD with software to blow those virus to...never mind, you get the picture. So here I am at home, ready to fix the problem. Turned on the computer and this is what I got...

What happened to the days when all you needed to do was a simple "Ctrl+Alt+Delete"?

The Beginning...

Many interesting stories usually begin with the lines "Once upon a time..." or "Long, Long ago..." but my life is not that magical or spectacular. Don't get me wrong, it is pretty interesting if I do say so myself, but no Oscar winning story here. (Or, maybe I'll let you be the judge of that!) Blogging is something that I never thought I would really have the guts to start until my dear friend Susan, or Susie Q. as I like to call her sometimes, inspired me. So, where to began...

As I have learned throughout the years, life just happens whether we want it to or not. There are those really good days that keep us smiling for years and then there are those bad days that we would like to forget but seem to overpower the good. For example, good day...the day I married my best friend, bad day...the day I lost my baby boy Marcus, good day...the day my beautiful daughter Olivia was born...bad day...the day after I lost Marcus. And the list goes on and on.

I have been "happily" married for almost seven years (December 16th for anyone that is wondering) to my best friend and the man of my dreams Anthony. Ok, Will Smith is the man of my dreams but the hubby comes really close! Now, when I say "happily" I don't mean that we are perfect, we don't argue and that everything is sunshine and roses. What I mean is that with the good/bad and ups/downs, there is no one else I would rather be sharing this journey with. We are the proud parents of our 3-year-old daughter Olivia, who constantly keeps us laughing. (Don't worry, you will see!) She is always letting the funniest things come out of her mouth and she probably doesn't even know it.

Ok, so this is probably not going to be one of the best posts ever, but this is to give you a little taste of who we really are. This is to suck you into my world. Make you want more...I hope it's working.

Either way, the key thing to remember and something that you will see is that throughout these many years of life together as a couple, through the death of a parent, the loss of a child, financial issues and some negativity from the outside...we still manage to remain "Curiously Happy"!!