Friday, October 22, 2010
I love the fall, when the leaves change and the weather gets chilly and there are pumpkins everywhere. I really LOVE those days where you can just cuddle up on the couch with a warm throw and sip on some hot chocolate while watching a movie. It's even better when you can cuddle up with your significant other. I'm so glad he is home this year, in a way I feel like we're still in our newly wed stage, just enjoying every little moment. This is the way fall is supposed to be.
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
I always try to find things to keep me busy cause my life isn't hectic enough as is. I mean, it's not like I work 35ish hours a week, waking up at 4am, then coming home around 1pm. And, it's not like I have a family to take care of, a toddler to chase, dinner to make, a house to clean, laundry to do. Hah! Yet, there are always new little projects I come up with, oh, you know, to kill the time I don't have. Lately, I've been doing lots of baking. I love anything that lets me express some creativity, so I've been decorating cookies, making cupcakes and pulling my hair out in between because they are not up to my super-perfectionist standards. Thankfully, my husband has been my guinea pig, and so has Gabe. He's loving the home made cookies I've made lately and especially loves when I decorate some special ones for him like ducks.
Here are some of the things I've made recently. I have made more things however, I sometimes forget to take pictures of things I make.
Pineapple upside down cake
I hadn't had this cake since I was probably around 9 years old. It was the first cake I made out of scratch, ever, and the first one I made in my oven and using my Wilton baking set.
(Sugar) Cookie Pops
I made these for Gabe's birthday. It was the first time I had ever made cookies, and I went the whole nine yards, making them from scratch and making the icing. I thought cookie pops would be cute for a centerpiece and honestly, I thought decorating would be a whole lot easier. Boy, was I wrong! It took me two batches to get them decent, and I was getting really discouraged but they were delicious and I guess not bad for my "first" attempt. Everyone loved them and I got so many compliments on them. I was really wanting to do a train cookie with the set of pops but in the end, the cookie didn't even look like a train so I just stuck to stars, rail road crossing signs and the number two. Not bad, and I'm already thinking of making one for my friend Gabby's baby shower or for when her daughter is born since she loved the cookies too.
I made these for my husband as a surprise one day when he got home from work. I really like how these turned out too!
I made this a few hours prior to my birthday. I was just hanging out, watching a movie in our room and got the sudden urge to make pie. I looked for a recipe online and around 10pm I went into the kitchen and started working on my pie. When I was 6, we had "Johnny Appleseed Day" at school and had an "apple party". My grandpa, who was an AMAZING cook, was here on vacation, and he said he would help me make a pie for my class. He made the best pie and I think since I was missing him before my birthday, I thought I should make a pie. Obviously, it was not as good as his, but it wasn't awful. Looks a whole lot worse than it tasted and again, I got compliments on it. The crust looked pretty ugly but making a homemade crust and rolling out the dough isn't as easy as I thought!
Sweet 16 Pink & Purple Cupcakes
Since times are rough, I thought it would be cute to make cute cupcakes for my little sister for her 16th birthday. It was just going to be a few people over for dinner and I thought, "what the hey, it can't be that hard". The cupcakes were pretty good, the frosting was a whole other story. I call these Psycho cupcakes because I literally went crazy because I made THREE batches of frosting and the frosting just had something against me. The first batch just slid out of the piping bag like melted ice cream. I tried to fix it to no avail. The next batch piped fine...until it melted and/or slid off the cupcake. So I tried a buttercream recipe next and for some reason that one wasn't working for me either. By this point I was exhausted, aggravated and wanting to throw the cupcakes out the window. I started crying and went into the room to throw a tantrum, saying that we would have to stop at a grocery store to buy a cake or something. I ended up falling asleep during my meltdown, woke up running late to the dinner and when I went to check on the frosting it has stiffened up and piped on to the cupcakes perfectly. I had to resist the urge to punch my husband when he kept saying "I told you everything would be ok" seriously, I hate "I told you so's" more than anything. In the end, the cupcakes were a hit, my sister loved them and they were really yummy. Psycho cupcakes weren't so bad after all.
With Halloween around the corner I wanted to make some more cookies. My cousin's kids wanted some cookies so I'm going to attempt to mail these to them. Hopefully they get there in one piece and not a huge box of crumbs. We did keep some of these for ourselves too, since Gabe (and my husband) have become quite the cookie monsters lately. I have to say that I loved how these came out. Still need more practice with piping and frosting but it was so much easier to make these than the one's I made for The Kid's birthday party.
These cookies honestly look too cute to eat. Right?
Wrong! "little fingers" AKA Gabriel, didn't think so. Here are the remains of a ghost cookie he got ahold of when we weren't looking. He came up to my husband with the half eaten cookie in hand and face covered in icing asking for "miook" (milk). He will NOT eat cookies like chips ahoy or any store bought cookie but he will turn into a cookie thief when I make them.
I have more ideas, including halloween cupcakes, some elmo cupcakes and other things like christmas cookies. I can't wait!
PS. A lot of the things I've made lately come off of here. I did some tweaking to recipes and added my own touch but I'm loooooving this blog! These ladies have such great ideas and they are soooo detailed when it comes to step by step instructions and I love that they have tons of pictures!
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
No, I'm not talking about the movie. My "baby" sister turns 16 today. As if I'm not emotional enough seeing my son growing up so quickly, my sister is flying towards adulthood. It's crazy how fast time has flown these years. I remember seeing her for the first time at the hospital, I can even recall her scent and how soft her baby skin felt. I remember how at 6 years old I only thought of all the fun times I would have playing with her and how I would help my mom with her. Never did I think of the times where we would fight and bicker, how she would take my toys and eventually my shirts or makeup. I knew I would have to help her and all but I never imagined that I would need to wipe away her tears at time and try to cheer her up when someone hurt her. I guess at 6, you don't really think of that, do you?
Now to see her, all grown up, I realize how much she has matured. Yeah, she's still kind of bratty at times, not gonna lie, but I see her becoming a very beautiful young woman with lots of talents. I know that right now, she might not feel that way, she might feel like no one understands her and we don't know what she's going through. Her and I are so different in many ways, yet, lately I see how alike we are at times. She hides her insecurities behind a fake smile, says she is "fine" when she feels like the whole world is crashing down on her. I know this, I see it and I know that it's all part of being a teenage girl. She locks herself in her room and blasts music on full volume to cheer herself up when she's feeling down. I did the same.
I also know at times she's says I'm "boring" and "old" and although she doesn't say it to me, she thinks I don't get her either. I know how annoyed I would get when people would nag me, how I just wanted to tell them to shut up when they would try to convince me that one day I would be happy and that I would understand. At 16, there is no hope for a better day, it's always black or white. You always want what you can't have, people either understand you or they dont, you pass or fail, you are "in" or you are a loser. You are stuck between being a kid and being an adult, you want to make your own rules, make your own mistakes and do what you want but you just can't. And it's perhaps one of the most frustrating times. I know that she's strong, she's always been a fighter and has always been that way. I just want her to know, that despite all we've been through that the sun will shine brighter as the days go by. That she needs to understand that one day, she's not going to care about people that have hurt her, but it's always better for that day to come sooner rather than later. I want to protect her from harm, keep her from stumbling and making mistakes and getting hurt in the process yet, I know that in order for her to grow her wings, she needs to fall and dust herself off and one day look back and realize how much she has grown and changed. I know it's happening already, she already looks back and realizes how much better off she is, I just want her to always see that. In ways, I feel like I can be overprotective, after all, I try to not just be there as a sister but as a parent, as a friend. Maybe she doesn't consider me a friend just yet, but I know she knows that I'm here for her. That just because I don't see her everyday and I have my own little family now doesn't mean that I have an unconditional love for her, that I wont drop anything to help her, that I wont hurt when I see her hurting. It's hard to take sides sometimes, I'm stuck in the middle between my mom and my sister because, I've been a 16 year old hormonal girl, and now I'm a mom. Being a mom, I also cry when I see how big she is, she's a Junior now, and I still see that little two year old covered in spaghetti with her little pigtails and goofy grin every time I look at her. I always remember the good times we had, playing games before falling asleep at night, jamming out to Taylor Swift, dressing up like "Homies" for no reason, taking dorky pictures, going to Twilight midnight showings, our little "dates" and seeing Mom & Tia Yola and realizing that one day we will be as old as they are and still being the dorks we are is something I always look forward to.
Happy Birthday Baby Girl. I love you so much! Remember you are beautiful and smart and can do so much if you set your mind and heart to it. Don't let anyone else tell you otherwise! I'm always here for you and always will be.
Monday, October 11, 2010
I am now 22. Scary. While I'm not really scared of aging, I do shudder when I think of how fast time is passing. Does that make sense? It's like I realize that time is passing so quickly that I'm going to miss something. I just turned 21, didn't I? I just found out I was pregnant, right? I only got married yesterday, right? No? Right, no. Ever since I became a mom I feel like time is passing by so quickly now. I'm sure people would argue that after a certain age is when the years start cascading upon you, for me, I'm not sure if that is the case. Maybe yes, maybe no. Either way, I'm 22.
My birthday was pretty uneventful, I guess it's not a birthday that was huge and worth a huge celebration but it was nice. I got to sleep in, and went out to breakfast with my Mom and Sister and kiddo. They also brought me presents and cards. My Sister got me cute sweater and necklace and Momma got me some cookbooks. My husband worked an early shift so it was nice to spend some time with my Mom and Sister. After breakfast, Gabe and I came home and napped for a little bit and later my sister and her friend dropped by and brought me flowers.
Around 5 my husband came home with some more presents. He got me a dozen red roses and gifts from him and Gabe. Gabriel picked out a balloon for me that happened to have Elmo on it.
I love disney princesses and Hubby got me a giftbag shapped like a castle with disney princesses on it. Inside was some makeup from MAC, including some things from the Disney Villains collection that I wanted and a few other things. He got me some eyeshadows, and an amazing red lipstick and lipliner and a liner, mascara and a pigment.
I also got something I wanted for the longest time...The Beauty and the Beast DVD. I had all the Disney movies on VHS but now I dont have a VHS player so I want to build my collection. So far, the only Disney Princess movies I have is Beauty & the Beast, Little Mermaid and Sleeping Beauty.
He also brought some cake and we invited our parents over. Some friends also came over for cake and coffee. It was nice to have people over since no one really visits us. My mom took Gabriel for the night so we could go out and we went out to a bar for a few drinks. It was nice and we really did have a good time.
Since we had the weekend off, Hubby wanted to spend it down in Monterrey but good 'ol mother nature had other plans and I was feeling really sick so we stayed in all day long. It was nice to just relax even though I felt like crap all day long. This weekend was just great to just spend time with Gabriel and my husband, since they are some of my biggest blessings, who cares if I'm an old hag who likes to stay in all weekend long? As long as I have the loves of my life, 22 or 47 will be the same. At least that's what I say now. Haha. Happy Birthday to me.
I love fall. Fall means winter coats, uggs, pumpkin pie, pumpkin spice lattes and pumpkin patches. I was looking forward to taking Gabriel to the pumpkin patch since around August. He had so much fun last year and I couldn't wait for my husband to see him. Since this weekend was my birthday, we both had the weekend off and took him to the pumpkin patch on Sunday.
We went to the same one we went last year, in Half Moon Bay and as soon as we got there Gabe was in the whiniest mood! I tried to get him to take pictures but he was so cranky he just wanted to be held. I'm not sure if he was scared of the scarecrows and fake bats and stuff but he was whining like never. Seriously, last year was so much easier. Guess they don't call them "terrible twos" for nothing, huh?
Eventually, he got over his poopie mood and got into the whole pumpkin picking mood. He loved to run around and loved the hay ride and train ride. We tried to get him to feed the goats but he didn't want to. Honestly, I was kinda relieved at that one, petting zoos and icky goat saliva on my kid kinda gross me out. The thought of all the germy-ness all over Gabe's hands *shudders*
We were there for a good two and a half hours or so, the place was packed! Guess that was expected though, since it was a Sunday. We did have a good time though, I'm glad my husband was here this time to see Gabe enjoy it. Since the pumpkins there are pretty pricey we only got Gabe one that he picked out himself. He was so proud of his pumpkin. He was even trying to kiss it!
Seriously, you can get a pretty big pumpkin at Safeway or Trader Joes for the price of the pumpkin we got Gabe at the pumpkin patch. Either way, the fun was for him to pick his pumpkin and have a good time, not to mention to snap a kajillion and a half pictures.
Friday, October 1, 2010
If there is something about being a mother that I cannot stand is the comparisons. From the moment that I was pregnant, the comparisons and unwanted advice started. My husband's aunt was pregnant at the same time as I was so the comparisons poured in non-stop. From our ultrasounds, to our morning sickness, to everything, it became some sort of competition. The fact that every pregnancy, every woman, every child, is different is not new. I enjoyed every minute of my pregnancy, even when I was 40 lbs over my initial weight I still enjoyed it. It was people comparing our bellies and saying I was "huge" (ok, I know I was huge, but hearing it non stop was ridiculous, especially when I was "huge" compared to someone else) that really got to me. Then our kids were born, her daughter was born the 19th, Gabe was born the 21st, her labor was quick, mine was long and painful. She had a girl who was about 7lbs, I had a 9lb 6oz chunker. I really wished that would be the end of the comparisons but I was not naive and knew that it was only the beginning.
When it came to bottle vs breast, the comparisons were there. To weight gain and height, to who crawled, got teeth, walked, everything was this huge competition. At least to everyone else. I know my kid is his own person, he develops at his own rate, he's a big kid, he always has been. I hate hearing direct comments, or from other people, that my kid is "slow". He's not. I know this and I wish people would butt out. For someone who does not have a degree in child development should NOT be making those comments. For Gabriel to be compared to a girl (from what I hear, girls typically talk, potty train, etc faster than boys do) is crazy. He's NOT stupid, he knows what you are saying, he has excellent memory (you show him flash cards or something in a book and he remembers it next time, even if when you showed him the flash card was a month ago). He understands two languages, likes to read, likes to play with toys that help him problem solve (puzzles, stacking toys, memory cards, etc) he watches only certain tv shows (Mickey, Thomas, Seasame Street and Word World) but he doesnt say very many words. Then again, he is an only child and isn't around other kids like this other little girl is. But for someone to say my child is slow is preposterous. I wish that parents thought before they spoke, I'm sure they hate getting unwanted advice or their kids to be compared to others yet they still feel entitled to throw their two cents in. All I can say, is that I hope that next time I have a baby, no one from DH's family has one around the same time.