God really does work in mysterious ways...

Ok, so NOW I can reveal what my huge appointment today was for.  Not too long ago God put this wonderful lady in my life.  It turns out that she knows absolutely eVeRyThInG there is to know about financial aide/student loans/pell grants/registration.  I mean Everything!  Well, I ended up transferring to a university from the much smaller school I was at.  I will definitely post A LOT about that school later.  Anyway, she educated me about lots of things that I didn't previously know about.  One of the things we talked about was a scholarship that she thought I might qualify for.  So I gathered and submitted all of the necessary paperwork; dropped off one of the letters at 11 pm (not kidding!!); drove on 2 wheels to my doctor's office 10 minutes before they closed so I could get a copy of my immunizations; finding my GPA; gathering my letters of recommendation;  and finally today I went to my much anticipated appointment.  Actually, it was an interview for the scholarship.  I have prayed so very much about this scholarship and just left it in God's hands.  If it were meant to be, I would get it.  And if not, perhaps God felt someone else was in a much greater need of the scholarship, and I could always re-apply for it next year again.  Anyway, I carefully chose my outfit last night.  Now you have to realize that for the last year I wore these:

Yes, I wore SCRUBS all of the time.  I even bought fabric and MADE my own scrub tops AND bottoms because that is really all I ever wore.  And I hated it...Really bad.  I worked for 15 years with attorneys and had built up quite a nice wardrobe in my closet.  I was always dressed very, very professional.  And I loved it.  Then, I was a SAHM for many years and...sad to say, some of those beautiful clothes shrank...bad.  They just don't fit the same anymore.....Don't ya just HATE when your clothes mysteriously SHRINKS all by itself??!! UGH!  Well, then when I started school last year, I entered the medical specialties program and that of course, required the students to come to class in scrubs.  So last night as I was getting my outfit ready for today...It wasn't an easy task.  But I found a beautiful ensemble that worked.  I confidently walked in and was called into the conference room immediately.  I was interviewed by 3 brilliant ladies and I was told as I walked in that the interview would be 20 minutes long.  It didn't.  I immediately felt at ease with this group of ladies and opened up and we talked about tons of stuff.  I really enjoyed the interview!  It was awesome!  And it lasted an HOUR!
Long story short...HA!  I was told at the end of the interview that all applicants would be notified in one week by a) telephone if they are awarded the scholarship; and b) by mail if they are not.
Well...Marko and I are sitting on the couch and I get THE CALL!! Yep...completely unexpected, they called to offer me the scholarship!  Picture me and Marko jumping up and down; high-fiving each other; hugging; crying.....and thanking God.  God is so good to me.  He always is.
This scholarship is a really BIG DEAL!  I won't go into specifics, but suffice it to say that I can focus completely on school without worrying about paying bills.  I was actively seeking employment and worried that I hadn't been able to find a job!  Not anymore....

It really has been a rIdIcUlOuSlY fAnTaStIc Tuesday!  My feet haven't touched the ground ALL AFTERNOON!  (:

Thank you God.


Beans, Beans the Magical Fruit! (:

Marko was 10 months old when I got pregnant with Tita, so that means that they aren't even a year and a half apart....so yes, I clearly remember having TWO babies at the same time.  And it was very tough.  My Gosh was it ever tough!  Even going to the grocery store for something simple like a gallon of milk was an EVENT that I had to plan (and PACK) for!!!   In fact, any woman that's been fortunate enough to be in THAT club will vouch for me.  Which club you ask?  The 2 babies under 2 club.  Again, I had 2 babies under 18 months!!  Wow.  Not bad for someone that wasn't supposed to ever have children! (:
Up until the kids were maybe 6 and 7 (I'm not kidding!)... Everyone STILL called them "The Babies."  They had been known as the babies ever since....well, since they were ....babies!
Well, now--my babies are growing up.  Too darn fast for my liking.  It's tough for me to give them more and more independence.  The only thing I can say as far them growing up is that they help a lot more around the house than before, of course.  Take today, for instance...I was busy making dinner and you probably know by now that being Latina means one thing:  You cook (a lot!) and many meals include the ever-present side of either rice or beans and tortillas.  It's a MUST!
Well, Tita has learned to make a pot of beans all by herself!  And they end up exactly the way I have always made them.  I am so proud of her!
Here's Tita sorting through the beans to pick out the bad ones:

 She's so focused!
 Here's a picture of the raw beans right before she rinsed them:
 And these are the ingredients you need to make authentic Mexican beans.  You need garlic (fresh or powder), cooking oil, salt and of course, water!  You can cook them in a pan over the stove, a crock-pot or a roaster (which is what we use.)
 She rinsed the beans really really good and put them in a strainer.  She ended up putting in about 3 pounds of beans to cook in the roaster, along with 3 1/2 pitchers of hot water, 1/4 cup of oil, 1  1/2 tablespoons of garlic and salt to taste (for us it was about the same as the garlic salt.)  She then stirred it all up and covered the roaster.
 She set the roaster at 450 degrees and let them cook for about 4 hours.

They're done!  And my whole house smelled so yummy with the aroma of fresh cooked beans! Mmmmmm

 Here's little Betty Crocker herself!

My little helper.  I am so proud of her!  I'm excited to show her all the goodies I know how to make.  And she loves cooking too!  I tell you.... it's in her blood (:

Oh and about the beans:  You must let them cool all the way down before putting them into the refrigerator!  I usually just put them in the refrigerator in a large plastic bowl with the lid.  You can warm them up whole, just the way they are and eat them with a spoon, or you can heat the amount you need in a pan and mash them up for some yummy tostadas.  If you like them refried...like really refried: heat the amount you need in a pan with some oil, mash them up and you will see how they kind of start to dry up.  They are ready when you go to stir them and ALL OF THE BEANS stick to the spoon!  Warmed up any of these ways is really good for breakfast with eggs and potatoes, with green chile and tortillas.

In an upcoming post I will show you how to make the best Mexican rice EVER!  (I'm not kidding!)....or maybe tortillas...or fideo! .......hmmmm maybe my blog will suddenly turn into a COOKING blog!  I'm really kidding.  I do love to cook, but I am not disciplined enough to keep up a cooking blog.  Maybe someday!  I'll let you know (:

Oh and I was bummed because Marko was busy outside helping his dad cut the grass!  It was his first time using the lawnmower, but since I was busy cooking, I wasn't able to go out and take some pics of him...You can bet I'll be out there next week when he cuts it again!  The yard looks great and I am so proud of him!
One more thing....I have a very important appointment tomorrow.  I can't reveal what it is yet, but it's BIG. HUGE!  And no, it's not what you're thinking!

So what do you think?  I really have no idea how many cooking blogs there are out there already, and if one more is really necessary.  Maybe I'll just start one so that all of my recipes are actually WRITTEN down somewhere!  I think that is what I'll do.  For my kids/grandkids/great-grandkids.   I really wish someone had taken the time to write down all of my mother-in-law's recipes..

Have a rIdIcUlOuSlY fAnTaStIc Tuesday!


Country livin'.......

So I've posted about country livin' and all of it's awesomeness...right?  Well....unfortunately, it pains me to say that SOME things about living out here aren't so awesome.  We had a visitor this morning, bright and early...  This visitor that I'm talking about is down-right NOT awesome and NOT welcome!!!!

It was long (yucky!!)....................slimy. (Ewwwwww).......................................and U-G-L-Y!! GA!!!! 

 Oh! And did I mention how SCARED of it I was????  Yeah....I know....I still took pics of it  (:  ....but I promise I really was scared!!!! Yikes!

I have NO IDEA what type of snake this is....doesn't make a bit of difference even if I knew what it was....THEY STILL CREEP ME OUT!!!  And I don't want any anywhere near my house!!!

You wanna hear something cReEpY??!!  Just yesterday, Armando was watching a movie of a family that had snakes ALL OVER their house!!  I remember telling him how creeped out I felt just seeing it on TV.  I don't know what the title of the movie was because I didn't watch it.  I actually never watch TV.  Guess that goes back to me growing up with only 3 channels....I was always playing outside instead.

Here's a few other pictures of this creepy, nasty, ugly thing:

 This would be his "good side."  I don't think it wanted me to show you the side of his head that is bashed in.  (Our neighbor killed it and disposed of it.)  Yay!
 See the neighbor's shovel??  Yeah....he scooped it up and hauled it off.  Yuck!!

So snakes be warned:  If you show up at my house, you'll probably not feel very good when you LEAVE!!!
Oh and DOES anyone know what type of snake it is? WAS??


Looking back..

I was recently unpacking a box and ran across old photographs.  And of course, I just sat on the floor looking through them for about an hour.  These are just some of them.  And they are NOT in any type of order.

This is moi when I was 6 months old.  I don't know how I was able to eat so much with that little mouth...but judging by my size, I managed just fine!  And I was obviously still wearing NEWBORN clothing!

 This is my kindergarten picture.  So I must be right around 5 years old.
 This is Tita during her First Communion.  The lady in red is her Godmother, Diana and that is Father Rocco.
 This would be Spiderman (aka Marko!)  His dad bought him the mask in Mexico and it was during the summer, which meant that Marko refused to wear shorts for most of that summer and he ALWAYS had the mask on.  It laced up the back of his head, so that meant that my poor baby was drenched in SWEAT for almost 3 months.
 And this is Spiderman sans the mask with Father Rocco at his First Communion!
 This is Laura on what I believe is the first time she EVER drove!  We were on a road trip; she was about 13 and I don't know she convinced us to let her drive....but we did!  She did awesome though.  I see Laura now with her little boy and I still picture her in my mind as a little girl..
 This is me with my cousin Manuel.  I was 3 (:

 This is Tita, Marko and Laura on that roadtrip I was talking about.  Tita was about 2, making Marko 3.  We had gone to Puerto Penasco, Mexico and this was on our way back home.  Marko was into dinosaurs BIG TIME, so he REALLY enjoyed this stop we made.  Not that you can tell by the huge smile on his beautiful little face...right?
 Tita and Marko being silly...
 I love this picture.(:
 This is at our little house we lovingly called "The Brown House." 
 This is when they were about 4 and 5.
 Easter 2000.  My baby was 1 and I was about 7 months pregnant with Tita.
 Laura in her high school days.
 I love this pic!
 And this next one...well this would be my ABSOLUTE, HANDS-DOWN, WITHOUT-A-DOUBT favorite picture of Marko and Tita.  Marko was 2 and Tita was about 9 months old.  I asked Marko to give Tita a kiss so I could take their picture.  I thought he was simply going to give her a little peck on the top of her head.....Instead, he GRABS her to kiss her and she was SO MAD as he planted a BIG KISS on her cheek!  Priceless!
 The next two pictures I just had to take pictures of.  We walked into the living room to find Peditos under the desk chewing away at something.  Marko looked a little closer and he said "Eww Tita is going to be SO MAD!"  He took it away from Peditos and it turned out to be her lipstick she bought LAST NIGHT to play dress up with.  I reminded her that she must have left it where he could get to it.  I felt terrible for her.  She used her own money for it and she paid $4 for it!  Hopefully, she'll remember to put her things AWAY!

So that was a peak into our past.  I LOVE looking at old pictures...especially of the kiddos.  I wish I could go back and have my children be toddlers again.  I know it sounds like a cliche, but seriously....WHERE DID THE TIME GO??


Criminals STINK!!

WARNING: You probably do NOT want to read this post if you are, say....eating breakfast, lunch or dinner, are planning on eating real soon, or have a weak stomach.  I am NOT kidding!

Ok, so I watch the news as often as I can, and I even worked as a Newsroom Secretary for a few years until I left on maternity leave with Marko.  This means that unfortunately, I have heard A LOT and have seen A LOT and not much surprises me anymore........Until yesterday.  I saw something on our local news channel that just is so disturbing ON SO MANY LEVELS, and I think you will agree.
The headline reads as such:

Police arrest alleged portable toilet peeper in Vail


Ok, seeing that headline, one would think that this creep maybe had a camera installed in the port-a-potty.  You know, those nasty portable toilets you might see at a parade, or the  county fair or some similar event.  BUT NOOOO!  This dispicable, perverted excuse of a human being actually..........ready for this??..............he C-L-I-M-B-E-D    I-N-T-O  the hole of the portable potty.  Yeah!!....THAT hole!!  It was reported in the news that the port-a-potty was placed at a yoga festival of some sort, that was held in Boulder, Colorado, and that some unsuspecting woman walked into the port-a-potty and heard a noise; looked inside the hole and thought someone was INSIDE the hole.  She ran out and alerted someone to go check it out.  Soon enough, the creep crawled out of the hole and came out....yep, covered in lots of yucky stuff!!!
Again, this is SO disturbing that I can't even wrap my brain around the fact that this man creep is so SICK as to do something so WARPED!!  What is WRONG with some people??!!  Can you imagine the poor police officers that had to ARREST this stinkin' piece of ________?? (pun SO intended!)

Here is the full article I got from Denver's Channel9 news website:

Police arrest alleged portable toilet peeper in Vail

9:50 PM, Jun 23, 2011  |   comments
BOULDER - Police say the man who they believed hid in a portable toilet at a weekend yoga festival was arrested in Vail on Thursday.
Luke Irvin Chrisco, 30, was arrested by Vail Police on a traffic charge. Boulder Police say that charge is unrelated to the incident at the Hanuman Yoga Festival in Boulder on June 17.
Chrisco was taken into custody at a gas station after witnesses say he had been panhandling.
An astute officer in Vail realized that Chrisco resembled the yoga festival suspect and alerted Boulder Police.
Police say a woman attending the festival lifted the lid in the portable toilet and thought she saw something moving inside the tank. She believed there may have been a person inside the tank, left the portable toilet, and asked a nearby man to go in and check.
The man told police he saw someone inside the tank covered in a tarp.
After the man left the toilet, he says he heard it lock from the inside. Kobel says a festival security supervisor waited outside the portable toilet for several minutes before the suspect came out.
The suspect ran away, covered in feces. The security supervisor tried to detain the suspect, but wasn't able to.
Chrisco faces charges of unlawful sexual contact and criminal invasion of privacy, both misdemeanors. He will stay in custody of Vail Police until he posts bond. If he doesn't post bond, he will be transferred to the Eagle County Jail.
Bond for the traffic offense is at $1,000 and bond for the Boulder charges is at $1,500.
(KUSA-TV © 2011 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

So I guess now, us normal people must start checking inside the toilet before using it!! WHAT HAS THIS WORLD COME TO??!!


Tita's wildflowers..

About 6 weeks ago, Tita spent the day at my my mom's house and it turns out that they spent the day planting flowers at her house.  Tita L-O-V-E-S anything to do with flowers/planting/digging/watering.  She would be great at anything she decides to do, but I can see her studying horticulture as an adult.
Anyway.....she came home with two pots of dirt that she was so proud of.  She excitedly told me of how she had planted seeds of some sort of wildflowers and that they were going to be "beautiful!"  She carefully waters them every couple days and this is the result:

 I have NO IDEA what these are.  But they are so delicate and they mean a lot to me because my baby planted them and took care of them.  There are lots of different ones that haven't yet bloomed.  I'm anxious to see what they will look like!

Don't they look beautiful?   I'm so proud of Tita.  I love that we share the passion for so many of the same things.  She's awesome!
This is probably going to sound like a dumb question....but does anyone know what these little flowers are called?  Since I don't know, I just call them Tita's wildflowers.  I know....pretty lame huh!?

I will leave you with these pictures I took.  I took them about 10 days ago, but I thought it was beautiful and definitely worth posting. (:

The sun setting over the mountains is truly a breathtaking sight...
 Wow.  I'm so lucky to be able to see this everyday!
 God is awesome!

Hope you all have a blessed day..


I heart Avocados update!

Remember how I posted here of starting an avocado tree from the pit? Well, that was about 2 weeks ago and already, my avocado pit looks like this:

 It has already cracked open!

The outermost "skin" dried up and peeled off, exposing the cracked pit.

It won't be long before the root will start growing out the bottom and the tree up through the crack.  I'll keep you posted every couple of weeks on it's progress.  I've probably changed the water in the glass about 4 times since I started growing my tree.  You'd be amazed at how fast the water is absorbed/evaporated!

Also, this is so off the subject, but I have to share that last night, the kids and I were in the car driving to my moms house.  And what comes on the radio??  "I Love You This Big,"  the first single from our newest American Idol, Scotty McCreery!  We I totally turned the volume ALL THE WAY UP and Tita and I blissfully sang our hearts out!  That was the very first time we have ever heard it on the radio and with the exception of Marko, we didn't care that the people stopped next to us at the stoplight were giving us strange, annoyed looks.  Marko wasn't too happy to be seen in the car with us while that song played, that's for sure!...

Hopefully, someday, Marko will be like Armando and just start listening to country music with Tita and I...Fingers crossed!

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