Fall Like Leaves

The days steadily progress
career wise for the best
but not so much for the rest

Feeling a weight on my chest
Feeling a pull towards a quest
Beginning to realize
To see with open eyes
That this is still a mess

I did what I had to
To get us all through

But now summer is over
Fall is setting on this life

Built up my walls
But now like leaves they all fall
Pushing me towards the call
Dont feel exposed at all

Instead Im free
And now I see
Its not regret
Its opportunity
To finally be me

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Mom’s Top 5 Wist List

As much as we love our kids and want them to stay little forever, there are certain things I miss in this phase of my life. Every parent has their list of things that they wist for. Here is mine.

This Mom’s Wist List

1.Wine instead of whine with my dinner.
2. Dinner that is spicy, herby or flavored with something more sophisticated than cheese.
3. Pants without a stretchy waistline.
4. A body without a stretchy waistline.
5. Staying out and sleeping in.

What’s on your wist list?

Nightstanders #2

Hey! I’m back with more books from my nightstand. Here’s a bit of what I’ve been reading lately.

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I just finished reading The Great Zoo of China, an action-packed best- seller whose title caught my eye at the store. It’s been a long time since a book hooks me just with a title, I usually have to dig around and read all kinds of blurbs before I make my decision, so I knew I’d enjoy it.
I thought the prologue was fantastic and really sucked you in with a story question and a bit about the main character. That was a smooth move because the set up ran a little long, and if I hadn’t been so intrigued by the first chapter it might have been challenging to get through it.
Then the action started and it was like a female Bruce Willis kicking Jurassic Park ass. I loved the main character’s name (CJ ;)) but I did find myself wishing to know a little more about her so I could care more. I still finished it and it was a good, solid action book.

The other book on my nightstand, Inkdeath, is the last book in the Inkheart series. You may remember how I found the first two at a used book store back in February, but hadn’t had a chance to grab ahold of the last one. Well, the other day I was at Books A Million trying to talk myself into buying a $45 cookbook when I spied Inkdeath while browsing through the Bargain Books section. I was so excited both for me and my wallet. I haven’t started it yet, but I’m looking forward to it.

The other book I have on my night stand is one of those new adult coloring books that is all the rage right now.

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It is a bit of a pricey hobby compared to my kids’ $2 coloring books, but the art is interesting and very relaxing. Here are a couple of the pages I’ve been working on.

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What is on your nightstand lately? Have you tried this new art therapy trend that I like to call complicated coloring?

Famsgiving and Thanksgiving

Hey! Can you believe Thanksgiving is next week? Where did the first half of this month get off to?
This year my friend/ sister-in-law and I are splitting the cooking and coming together with our respective families. This means more food with less work (plus more wine 😆). I am excited and grateful to share this meal with my family and friends.
We usually go to my mother-in-law’s house but she is traveling over ther holidays and instead opted to host one of those uber-trendy early meals that bloggers dub “Friendsgiving” but I’m calling her version “Famsgiving” because it was family, not friends.
The food was delicious, the kids (9 of ’em! 😮) had a blast with balloons and a kiddie conga line, and every lady in attendance brought a bottle of my favorite wine, Moscato.

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Puerto Rican holidays have a different selection of sides served up with the turkey than the traditional green bean casserole, so we had our turkey with a pasta salad and the World’s Best Rice. Ask anyone who’s tried it and they will agree, my MIL’s arroz con gandules is the. freaking. best. It was lots of fun and lots of yum.
I’m pretty sure we won’t have such a lively celebration, since we won’t be topping off the night with salsa dancing and conga drums, but there will be green bean casserole, gravy, and candied yams, so a good time is still guaranteed!
How do you celebrate Thanksgiving? Do you prefer the traditional meal or does your family have their own unique traditions?

Should adults have screen time limits like our kids do?

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Should adults limit screen time?

Home and tired after a fun, full day at a local amusement park, Zoomers. I didn’t take any pictures because for once we left the phones in the car. Since I almost always work on Sundays it is rare that we get this kind of quality time together, so we were intent on being in the moment, and a big part of th was leaving the biggest distraction out of the equation.
And guess what? We had a great time.
We waved at the girls as they passed by on their go carts, joined them on the midway rides, played games together in the arcade and made real memories. Way better that twiddling our thumbs on tiny screen or force freezing fake memories that our phones would remember better than us.

It got me thinking about how pediatricians recommend that we limit our children’s screen time, but our own healthcare providers don’t recommend he same for us.
So I’ve decided to impose my own limits. I already limited myself from facebook by uninstalling the app a few moths ago, but I’ve noticed that anytime I’m bored or idle, my hands go straight for the phone.
I am not sure how crazy my husband would be about this idea, honestly, but I would like to see us let the phones go at least one afternoon per week in order to be fully present with our kids and in our little family adventures. It doesn’t even have to be the same day every week, just a day where we are intentionally offline to boost quality time.
I will let you know how it goes, but in the meantime, what about you? Do you enforce limits to your screen time like you do for your kids? Do you find it decreases your stress levels, improves quality time, or makes you more present in the moment to put your phone down? And if you do impose limits, what kind and how often?

Secretly Proud

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The teacher sent a note
I was supposed to be mad
But when it read it
I was secretly glad

She’d been in trouble
For reading during math
She’d been in trouble
For doing what I had

All those years ago
When I was bored in class
How many times had I been caught
With a book in my lap?

I told her gently
That she could read at home
Or even on the bus
But that she must
Show her teacher respect
That Mrs. P worked very hard
On those lessons and tests

My daughter said she would
That she’d never thought of it that way
Then I called my mom
And told her about my day

I knew she’d understand
Cause her bookshelves bulge like mine
And we were secretly proud
And we secretly didn’t mind

Top Ten Animated Adventure Movies

Yesterday I mentioned how much I love animated adventure films and I thought it would be great to share my Top Ten List of Animated Adventure Movies for Kids and the Kid-At-Heart.

These movies revolve around a hero’s quest, have rich fantasy backgrounds, and well-developed worlds. Most also have a killer soundtrack and plenty of humor, which are key to a movie’s replay ability. And if you are going to invest in a movie, it’s gotta be one that will live in the DVD player instead of gathering dust in a drawer.

Top Ten List of Animated Adventure Movies for Kids and the Kid-At-Heart

The Lego Movie
Oh, Lego Movie. This was my favorite for a long time before The Book of Life usurped it. It has the best quotable lines (“Cover your butts.” “Cover the what?” Boom!) The awesomest soundtrack, and a really creative hero story. So good for boys, girls and grown ups. A great family movie.

The Book of Life

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I talked about why I love this movie in this post. It is so good that I had it on for my son the other night and as my husband passed by on the way out of the kitchen he got sucked in and wound up watching the whole thing. That man Does. Not. Watch. Movies. If that’s not a recommendation, I don’t know what is.

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Finding Nemo
Classic adventure, memorable characters, so cute and so fun. You will never forget Dory and Marlin will grow on you so much you’ll forgive his terrible joke skills.

Cars
Creative, creative, creative. We have a lot of race car fans in my house (especially since builing them is my husband’s hobby) so this one was an instant winner around here. My favorite part is when Guido does a solo pit stop.

Frozen
Does this movie even need a review? Exactly.

Ponyo
A fun twist on the mermaid on land tale. My daughters replayed this movie until the disc wouldn’t play anymore. Then we bought another copy.

Rio
Another movie with lots of awesome music. It’s funny, it has a love story but beware – your kid might suddenly bust out some samba moves when you least expect it aka when it’s least appropriate.

Wall-E
The robot character is so expressive without saying anything at all. No one talks for the first thirty minutes of this film, and neither will your kid.  My daughter used to beg me to save those plastic Easter eggs and she’d nestle the bottom into the top at an angle and call it Eva. Then she and her sister would act out parts of this movie for many (quiet) hours. Any movie that jumps off the screen and into their fantasy play is a keeper.

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Curious George
The bright colors and again, good music, make this one great for the younger crowd. Will Farell and Drew Barrymore keep the adults watching too.

Meet the Robinsons
This movie has great vision and one of my favorite messages “Keep moving forward.” The enthusiasm the creators have for this concept shows through in the story. Family fun, science and imagination all rolled into one.

So that’s my Top Ten List. What movie would you add? List them in the comments, I’m always looking for a new favorite.