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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

In just ONE month...

My Pea will be ONE YEAR OLD.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

"Ed-yoo-kay-shun"- Say Anything #2

What are your plans for educating Olivia? You are always a wealth of well-researched information and I was wondering what your views were on the subject. I am becoming more and more disenchanted with our public school system and am researching alternatives. Que piensas?

-This is an awesome question and my answer is lengthy. There are many aspects to the education debate and many things to consider. My strongest point as far as education for children is that parents/guardians need to take ownership and full responsibility for their kid's education. We cannot just drop our kid off at school every morning and hope for the best.
My dad was a HUGE intellectual influence for my sister and me and continues to be. My parents made the finacial sacrifice of putting us both in private schools with the best curriculum available in San Diego. Our entire K-12 school life was not private though, we also went to a public elementary school for a couple of years and finished high school at a public school, as well. We were lucky to live in an area with decent public education but in retrospect neither one of these institutions compared to the private school approach to teaching kids.
Ideally, I would love to homeschool Olivia. When done correctly, homeschooling is extremely enriching and empowering for children. This is not for everyone because it does require a lot of discipline, structure, time, and commitment. However, I have mom friends who homeschool and their kids are so social and ahead of most kids their age academically. Homeschooling groups make fun field trips to the zoo, museums, parks, etc. etc. Homeschooling is not what it's reputation dictates. The reason I like the homeschooling idea is that parents take complete control of their child's learning while also having the freedom to partake in fun social activities with other homeschooled kids outside the home.
At this point, I do not see homeschooling in our future. It does not seem like the best fit for us for several reasons. Todd likes the idea of Olivia having a typical schooling experience, and at this moment I am not a stay at home mom. Sadly, public schools in California are suffering greatly. Large classrooms of kids lead to crowd control and over-worked teachers. The curriculum and expectation for each grade level seems to falter year after year according to the research I have done. Children who struggle continue to be pushed to the next grade and kids who are "gifted" are often forced to ride the wave of their classmates who are behind.
To answer the question, our plan for education is to enroll Olivia in a charter/private school in our city. There are several excellent schools in San Diego with faculty that is there because they WANT to be and can be fired if they are not 100% committed to their kids. The curriculum is strong and academic excellence is paramount. The classrooms are significantly smaller so teachers can actually work with their students independently and help build on their personal strengths. I can remember this from my own experiences growing up. I felt my teachers knew me and pushed my talents and encouraged me to try harder in the subjects I was not A+ in.
One more thing: Language. I speak Spanish to Olivia and Todd speaks English. I also teach her words in French. For some reason the U.S. does not foster the opportunity for kids to learn other languages. All my cousins who were educated in Mexico were taught English and their homework was always way more advanced than mine. In most developed countries, if not all, kids are learning another language in elementary school! I don't get it?

No matter if your kids go to private or public school, it is absolutely essential to add to whatever goes on while they're at school. My dad would give us history lessons, encourage literature, and explain math problems. At that time, I thought it was so annoying but now I am eternally grateful.

If any of you have any more information to add or correct, especially if you are working in the public school system, please chime in. We're all ears!


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

First Installation!

Say Anything, version 1. Keep 'em coming :)

1. What's your relationship like with your own parents/siblings? How has it affected the way you parent?
-I am very, very close to my parents and sister. My mom is my hero and my dad is just absolutely amazing. No one could be more selfless and devoted than my mother, no one. Having this amazing pair of parents just makes me realize how I want to be there for Olivia 110% all the time like they were. It also makes me realize how unbelievably hard those shoes will be to fill. I strive to be almost as wonderful as them. Even almost would be a lot!
My sister is my best friend and I am constantly reminded that her best qualities are the ones I should strive for, so much compassion and sensitivity. That girl has a whole lotta heart.

2. Beauty secrets?? Tell me!
- A really good eyelash curler, two coats of mascara, and moisturizer! Good skin is the best cosmetic. Oh yeah, sleep and red wine (not in any particular order).

3. What did you eat for breakfast this morning?
-Leftover pasta from last night. This morning Pea and I ate that in bed together. Very unusual. 9 times out of 10 it's coffee and a banana on the run.

4. Do you have any tattoos? If so what are they and do you want more?
-I have 3 small tattoos. One that I got when I was 17 and dumb, thankfully it is tiny and er, hidden. I have a small and very cute strawberry on my hip that I got when I turned 18. On my right wrist I have 4 small red hearts. My sister and two BFFs (Hi Lu!) have it, also. We got it in Hollywood. Fun times.
I would like to get another someday, but I question it. What I want is a beautiful Pablo Picasso sketch that I found in an art book a couple of years ago. It's an outline of a woman's face, sort of like a Venus. It is so pretty and feminine. It's a big piece and that's why I am hesitant but I have been thinking of it more recently. I would love to include Olivia's name in there somewhere in a very subtle way.

Monday, September 20, 2010


To my handsome and funny man/partner/bff. I love you!
Three years ago today we went and saw Morrissey live in Tijuana. Our love was new and exciting. Life just keeps getting more interesting. I cannot wait to see what else is in store for us!

Sunday, September 19, 2010


Exactly twenty days before I get married I found my dress. Just in time to get alterations done and any other last minute details. It is dreamy, very pretty and cut so perfectly for my body it's almost like it was made for me. On my way to go pay for another not-so-perfect and way more expensive dress I stopped (on a whim) to check out a tiny little bridal shop in a random part of town. Turns out, this place is a gem. One of my best friends found her wedding dress there, too. The dress is not bridal-y, or common, or poofy. It's like I found the one I did not even know I was looking for.

I took photos of every single dress I tried on except this one. Not a single picture was snapped because it is just too special. I cannot wait to surprise everyone.

I'm happy.


Monday, September 13, 2010

Muse Monday

"As a working mother, the last thing on my mind when I'm trying to get my son out the door and to school on time is how I look. I still love clothes, but they just don't fit into my life the way they used to. For work, I get to dress up and somebody does my hair and makeup, and its like a little holiday for a few hours. But for everyday, it would be foolish to spend more time on my outfit than I do on my son."
-Sarah Jessica Parker
images via: Google

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Say Anything...

The title of this post happens to be the name of one of my favorite romantic films from the 80s and idea comes from one of my favorite mom bloggers, Adriana over at Just By Living. I want to do some fun, new stuff around here and help my lovely readers know me better. Ask me anything you want to know about me, and I will gladly answer. Anything. Let's play Q&A, and thanks for reading :)

Saturday, September 11, 2010


Well, at least she loves blackberries & they are super healthy.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010


Must be the weather.
I woke up feeling a little funny this morning. This knot in my stomach is not new or scary, I am pretty familiar with this. It's also not overwhelming, I've had several existential crises in the past three years. I look at the date and our wedding is exactly one month away. Nothing is more thrilling than marrying the boy that I fell in love with one fall, my favorite season. How fitting. Falling in love in the fall is nothing short of poetic in the most cliché of ways.
Sometimes when I read other mom blogs I question myself. Why do all of these women have it all figured out, all of their life fitting so neatly into one perfectly illustrated blog post. Did I miss something? I cannot ever picture myself with their mentality but then again that's more than likely my own lack of imagination. Todd and I had a conversation the other day about life and what we want out of it. It seems like we both keep looking forward, plotting and planning for the next thing. It scares me to realize that this period in life will be one we look back on fondly; everything is so complicated and so simple at the same time. Constantly I remind myself to cherish the moment, to live fully now.
Olivia is such a source of light for us, and I can see it in Todd's eyes and the way he protects her and knows the lyrics of every dumb kid song her obnoxious toy airplane plays. It's enough to make me cry to look back on my short life and where I am now- the monumental experiences I've had and how nothing is how I expected it to be. Things always work out for me, I always count on my backbone and my instinct and these two things have been so faithful. I am infinitely grateful for this.
In one month we will be signing a paper that legally binds us together but how can a signature and some law encompass all of the past 36 months of our lives? It simply cannot. For every trying situation we find ourselves in, I go in with my eyes closed and hoping for the best. Once everything settles, something shifts. Our life is completely different again but one thing is constant and never altered. Todd is my partner through it all: the good and the bad, the fat and the skinny, the strong and the delicate. That is what marriage is, right? Isn't that what most people hope they're signing up for?

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Tuesday Tunes

I first heard this song in its remixed version for Baz Lurhmann's brilliant interpretation of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet back in 1996. Orginally, it was a b-side on one of Radiohead's albums. It was one of those songs that captivated me right away. It's sexy and complex, dreamy and interesting. This track can be part of a lullaby playlist, or babymaking playlist (!), or even the background music to a night alone with a bottle of red wine. Enjoy :)

Monday, September 6, 2010

The diva.

Yesterday was a challenging Sunday. It all began Saturday night. Olivia refused to sleep after Todd fed her dinner, a bottle, and all the usual bedtime routine steps. When I tried to rock her to sleep, I could tell she was tired but fighting it. Finally, nearly two hours after we began trying to get her down she finally passed out. In our bed, of course. Then, yesterday she just fought us in little ways throughout the day.
Screaming if we put her in the car seat, standing up in her highchair though she was strapped in, throwing insane tantrums if we took something away, and full-blown sobbing if we said the word "no" to her. I understand this is not usual behavior for a 10-month old infant but I assure you that my sweet daughter's antics yesterday were that of a bratty toddler.
She refused a nap and after three hours of trying *everything* Todd and I decided to put her in her crib with a paci and some toys and let her settle down herself. As you know, I condone peaceful parenting and we have never let Olivia cry it out. I gave this experiment a 5 minute max and left the room. I sat and watched the clock. I could hear her crying but it was not an urgent or scared cry. It was a meek and tired cry, and four minutes in she started to settle down. Six minutes later she was peacefully sleeping without a single tear on her face.
I felt like I was failing the fundamentals of our parenting style, but at the same time she was not hysterical and cleary exhausted. I think it is a mix of several things. She is frustrated she cannot communicate, and she is starting to realize her actions get a reaction from us. She is still a happy and loving child, but if she gets upset or does not like something she loses her cool really quick. I am going to start consistently signing with her and hopefully she picks up on it. I am hopeful this will allow her to tell us what she wants. She is a smart kid, and that can be challenging for her and for us.
By bedtime, my head hurt from her sporadic crying and screaming. Todd and I were both kind of in shock by her behavior. I gave her a nice, warm bath and she threw a fit when it was time to come out. She also got super pissed when I put her pajamas on. I was humming her to sleep and then she decided she still wanted to play. Finally, after 10:00pm, she finally was able to sleep. In our bed, using all of our pillows.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

The "W" word.

The date is quickly approaching and I am ironing out all the details. It is so nice to keep things low-key and relevant to US. I am planning things my way. Our way. I am so happy to be marrying my best friend, and the party is just a celebration of this. This blog, Ruffled, is giving me some great ideas and inspiration. Key words: vintage, artsy, different.

Some things I like: