Women, You Need To Be Checking Your Breasts For Lumps At Least Once A Month. Best Time Is After Your Period.

In the United States for every 8 women, 1 will be diagnosed with breast cancer.

This statistic is very alarming. Being a woman and having daughters pushes me to bring more awareness to this and to encourage the females in my life to ensure they are checking themselves regularly for anything abnormal.

I discovered a lump in my underarm almost a year ago. I was referred to woman’s imaging twice and I even requested to see a specialist because I still felt unsure.

Long story short, they have come to a recent conclusion that it’s a benign lymph node. I will continue to monitor it and am doing what I believe I need to do. I am still very hopeful that it will resolve on it’s on.

But in the meantime I feel a very strong obligation to share this and to encourage women to be checking themselves. Having this lump has led me to lots of googling, believe me. But when I go through something I try to ask myself, “what is this teaching me and how can I apply this to my life?” It’s all been a life lesson.

Hence, why I am writing this blog.

Maybe some female (friend or stranger) will read this and just her reading this saved her life! I mean, who knows! But if anything I just want encourage you, my friends, to take care of yourselves as best you can.

I know cancer is not something we want to believe that can happen to us but the truth is, it can. If not you, possibly someone you love dearly. And with a 1 in 8 statistic we should be even more proactive with this, as well as, providing more awareness to the women in our lives to check themselves.

I am not a health expert. But here are the answers that I can provide to you with my experience.

When to check your breasts?

At least once a month. Best time to check for any abnormalities is right after your period, this is what a breast specialist told me. What may help is setting a monthly reminder in your phone to prevent you from forgetting.

How to self exam your breasts?

Lay down on your back and lift one arm reaching far above your head. Use your opposite hand and begin pressing 4 fingers all around your breast, armpit, and collarbone. Repeat on the other side.

You’re feeling for any lumps (some women have natural lumpy breast tissue which is why it is good to become familiar with the way your breasts feel) you’re also checking for any discharge from your nipples.

Note: if anything AT ALL seems unfamiliar it’s best to just let your doctor know.

I feel a lump, now what?

First of all, don’t panic. Lumps do not always indicate cancer. They can be cysts or even a benign lymph node if located in the underarm. And given time they may go away on their own.

Either way I encourage you to call your doctor right away and to schedule an appointment to have it further check out.

My doctor referred me to have an ultra sound, what does that mean?

Most of the time it means they really aren’t sure what the lump is. And lumps in the breast is also not something they mess around with. So they refer you to have it checked out on a different level. I personably feel it’s better to be referred somewhere then to just be dismissed and told “it feels normal”.

Don’t panic once again if your doctor is referring you. I know this can be scary, trust me. But if it is something that is concerning you want it caught as soon as possible.

If you still aren’t satisfied, ask to be referred to a breast specialist.

All I’m going to say is, your peace of mind is worth it. Just trust your intuition and I encourage you have a health advocate if you’re uncomfortable being your own.

A breast specialist will check your breasts, will feel the lump, will ask if you’re experiencing any pain, ask if the lump has grown, and she may or may not have you come back in a few more months.

And if the breast specialist doesn’t suggest you come back and the lump is still present over time, I would definitely have it checked out again. Don’t just dismiss it because the doctor says it doesn’t appear abnormal. If it’s abnormal for YOU, stay on top of it.

When it comes to your health become comfortable being uncomfortable.

Don’t be embarrassed or uncomfortable with your questions, or requesting a second opinion or additional follow ups, or bringing it up to family or friends, etc. Having peace of mind is always worth it even when it feels like a lot.

I know this kind of stuff isn’t fun to discuss believe me. It’s scary and terrifying but we are all in this together.

With all this being said, check yourself and ask the women in your life, “how often are you checking yourself.”

You might save their life.

25 Money Saving Tips You Can Start Now- Whether It Be Getting Out Of Debt Or Saving For More Experiences

Who wouldn’t mind a little extra money in their pocket?

Some of these tips take discipline and may be difficult at first to implement into your life. But I can assure once you get in these habits you’re going to wish you started a long time ago.

When I had my first daughter my husband and I decided that I would stay home. It was something that I really wanted to do and we knew if we made some sacrifices and be frugal with our spending we could make it happen.

I’m not saying it was easy cutting back, because it wasn’t.

Before I had kids I was making decent money working at the bank. Making my own money I never really thought twice about how I was spending it. It was my money and my thought process was, well I’ll make it up when I work tomorrow.

I use to get my hair colored, manicures and pedicures often, eat out A LOT, go shopping and buy whatever was appealing pretty much. Money wasn’t too much of an issue because I was working.

However being on one income has forced me to get creative and cut back on my spending lifestyle. However I think to myself all the time jeez, if I could have installed these habits while I was actually working I’d have so much money now!

But it is what it is, you live and learn.

Anyways folks, these tips below are what have personally helped me and my family live on one income. We have 3 kids, take family trips often and own more then when we had 2 incomes. It’s been an adjustment but totally worth it!

READ BELOW!


25 Money Saving Tips You Can Start Now-Whether It Be Getting Out Of Debt Or Saving For More Experience’s

woman taking pictures of ruins
Photo by Haley Black on Pexels.com

1. Cut Your Own Hair (there are plenty of YouTube videos on how-to)

If you’re like me, and typically only get a trim when getting a haircut then this can be a super easy money saver. As much as I love the treatment of having my hair washed and blow dried while I just sit there, it can be expensive. I have cut my hair, added layers, and gave myself bangs all through watching how-to videos on youtube. If you’re thinking of going from long hair to short, well then, I would suggest a professional. When you begin cutting your own hair getting your hair done by an actual professional can feel like a real treat and more deserving.

2. Pre-plan Your Meals 

When you begin pre-planning your meals you only begin buying what you actually need to make those particular meals. Look through your fridge and pantry and ask, “What can I make with this?” If you can get in the habit of doing this there will be no more things sitting in your fridge or pantry going bad or becoming expired.

3. Wait Till Movies Come Out On Redbox/Netflix/etc. VS. Watching Them At The Theater

If you go to the movies often this can really add up. With the tickets, snacks, and popcorn, it’s very easy to spend more then 20 bucks every time. Especially if you enjoy the theaters with the reclining chairs. Save going to the movies for special occasions or for movies that you really really want to see. Most of the time you can wait and you can put that money towards something else.

4. Embrace Your Natural Hair Color Instead Of Coloring It

How often do you color your hair? Color can be very expensive. I think most of the times I have colored my hair it has always been 80 dollars or more. But since I’m saving money I have embraced my natural hair color and my hair hasn’t been colored in almost 2 years (around that time anyway) If you just love color then I would suggest going with highlights vs. a solid color. That way when it does begin growing out it looks a little more natural and won’t need as much retouching.

5. Do Work Outs At Home Instead Of Paying A Gym Membership

Typically gym memberships are 20 dollars a month or more. From what I can remember anyway. I use to love having a gym membership but when you’re saving money a gym membership is more of a luxury than a necessity. There are some great at home work outs all over the web. You may need to get a little creative but you’ll soon learn you don’t need the membership to stay fit and strong.

(YouTube has great work outs you can do in your home. I personally love ‘bohobeautiful’. Her videos are yoga related.)

6. Cancel your cable (with smart TVs now and Netflix who really needs cable?)

My husband and I had cable for years. We always had the cheap package but we still had cable. We are so busy doing other things that we hardly watch any TV. The only people that really watch TV are the kids but when they do watch TV its something they enjoy on Netflix or youtube. SO, we went ahead and canceled it. We figured if we wanted it back we will just call and get it back. It’s been a few months now and still no eagerness to get cable back. If anything it has given us more time back to do more things that we enjoy.

7. Shop The Clearance Racks Or Try Thrift Stores

Whenever you need something always check the clearance section first. Have you ever bought something and then in two weeks you see it in clearance? The worst right! Check clearance, or wait for sales. I personally am going to begin checking out thrift stores. When I was younger my mom and I absolutely loved thrift store shopping. And now, I hardly ever go. If you have the time you really can find some amazing treasures that would definitely be more expensive elsewhere.

8. Try The Generic Brands, You May Be Surprised

Not all generic brands are great, however you may come to find you enjoy the generic brand or style better. It’s typically a good chunk cheaper and works just as good.

9. Eat out less

Going back to tip number 2, pre-planning meals can definitely help with eating out less. I personally love love love eating out! So if you catch me eating out its because I am treating myself. But if you’re buying your lunch everyday or going out for dinner or drinks with co-workers every other night a lot of money is going to waste. If you’re a person who feels they do this I challenge you to add up your receipts, the number may be shocking.

10. Avoid Buying Expensive Clothing Or Accessories

Particularly name brand. We all know how expensive name brand clothing or accessories can be. So much sometimes it’s absolutely ridiculous. My mom, bless her heart absolutely loves Michael Kors. One time it was my mom, my husband, and myself and for whatever reason I asked her how many brand name purses she had. I was expecting like 5 the most. She said maybe 20 (which we know she has more then 20) my husband and I looked at each other in shock. We began discussing how else all that money could be used. A purse here, a watch there, 2 or 3 pairs of heels there….it adds up. I personally rather put that money on a vacation. If there’s something you really want, save it for a birthday or maybe an anniversary.

(some clothing and accessories are very pricey, how else could you be using that money?)

11. Review Your Bills And Create A Budget

Sometimes you look at your bank account(s) and you ask yourself, where the heck is my money going. Take the time to figure it out. Identify the problem and concur it. A big issue that most of us face is we spend more money then we have coming in. Learn to live within your means and be happy with it.

12. Review Any Monthly Subscriptions (do you really need those magazine subscriptions?)

There are monthly subscription’s for just about everything it seems. Take the time to review what you are paying and how often you really use it. What I’ve seen lately all over social media are subscription boxes. You pay a monthly fee and you get a box of goodies of whatever you signed up for. They have make-up boxes, dog boxes, book boxes, etc. You name it, I guarantee there’s a box for it.

However, do you really need it?

13. Create A Limit With Holiday Spending (especially with gift buying)

Many of us go into debt when the holidays come around. We charge it on a credit card then spend the new year paying it off. Your kids probably don’t need all those toys and is that what so and so really wants. Create a budget with your holiday spending and find out what people want or need so you don’t end up overspending or wasting your money on something that could be cared less for. Also, stick to the budget. I will say it again, stick to the budget.

14. Figure Out If You Can Consolidate Your Debt- Work with a Financial Advisor

If you have a lot of debt it doesn’t hurt to speak with an advisor or banker. A debt consolidation or refinance could save you more then you think. Just make sure whoever you are working with you really trust. You don’t want to end up with even more debt.

15. Do It Yourself Projects Are Big For A Reason (most of the time you can DIY and it’s cheaper)

We hire people for this and that when in reality, you could probably do it yourself. OR, we see things online or in the store and it can easily be made.

You can make the quality better and will save you money! The benefit of doing things or making things yourself is you end up appreciating it a lot more and saves you money.

16. Make Things Visible-get organized

So many things we forget about because we can’t see it. It becomes expired or we completely forgot it even existed and we’ve bought multiples. Take the time to go through your things and make it noticeable so you don’t catch yourself buying something that you already have, you just probably forgot about it.

17. For Everything That You Buy Ask Yourself, “is this a necessity or a want?” (Be strong)

I love retail therapy just like the next person, but truth be told most of the things we buy we don’t actually need. For everything you buy I challenge you to ask this question and most of time you will find it’s a want not a need. And if it is a want, you could be saving that money and using it elsewhere.

18. Make Meals At Home And EAT THE LEFTOVERS

This is somewhat related to tip number 2. It’s not enough to just pre-plan your meals you have to actually stick to it and make it. And eat those leftovers! Honestly, I’m not the biggest fan of leftovers. However if that food ends up in the trash then I just threw away money. So in this house we eat leftovers.

19. Give Yourself Manicures And Pedicures

If you’re getting your nails done every two weeks then those little pennies are adding up. I love getting my nails done. But it’s now become a reward to myself or something I enjoy doing before going on a trip. Doing your nails yourself is rather simple, you just need to make the time to do it yourself.

20. Tweeze your Brows Yourself

Another thing I use to do back in the day every two weeks was getting my brows done. If I wasn’t getting them waxed I was getting them threaded. But once I became a stay at home mom I decided to not do it anymore. So not doing that one thing for the past 3 years has saved us $1,080. Holy crap! That’s the first time I’ve done the math on that.

Since then, I’ve grown them out more and just tweeze now. I stick with my natural shape and let them be.

21. Save Your Gift Cards

I’ll be honest I have re-gifted gift cards. That, or I have used gift cards to buy other gifts for parties or whatnot. It’s a very simple method to provide gifts to others without touching money from your bank account. I don’t do this all the time but I definitely have when I am saving money for whatever reason.

22. Brew Your Own Coffee (SO.MUCH.CHEAPER.)

If you’re spending 5 bucks on coffee 5 days of the week you’re spending about 25 dollars a week, which is 100 dollars a month on coffee. WHICH, is 1,200 dollars a year. You’ll spend less money buying a decent coffee maker and making it yourself.

(If the barista knows your name, you’re probably spending too much money there)

23. Rent Space In Your House (if you have an extra room, get a roommate.)

This may not work for everybody but if you have an extra living space consider getting a roommate or allow a family member to move it. Charge them monthly and put that money towards your mortgage, debt, into a savings, etc.

24. Be Cautious Of Little Expenses (a dollar here and there really adds up)

We’ve all been to Target or TJ Maxx and get in the trap of those little cute things that you had no intention on buying but now they are in your cart. They are seen at check out, once you walk into the store or maybe in the middle of an aisle. Those are traps. Eventhough sure it’s just a dollar, or two, or three….well, they begin to add up and if you are doing this every time you shop you’re spending more then you think on pointless things. Be aware and cautious.

25. DO YOUR BEST NOT TO STRESS

Money makes us stress. But do your best to not allow it to control you or even upset you. With these saving tips you will have more money in your pockets that you can splurge elsewhere (on trips for example) or you will be on the road to getting out of debt faster.

Hope these tips help! I’d love your feedback!

Are there any money savings tips that you can share?

 

 

If You Have Been Experiencing Mom Guilt, I Want You To Try This

Being a Mom can be challenging. That’s the truth, and for many different reasons and unique situations.

While Motherhood is absolutely amazing and very humbling, it’s full of struggles, hardship and what many other Mothers would call ‘Mom guilt’.

You really won’t hear too many Mothers going around talking about the struggles they have with parenting, a lot of times we keep our hard times to ourselves.

Why? Because we are ashamed to even have these feelings and emotions. We feel embarrassed and unworthy at times. It’s difficult when these types of moods occur.

I got to a point in this Motherhood journey where I knew I needed to change myself. Some of my actions were definitely uncalled for. How could I expect my little one to control their temper when I could barely control my own.

I found myself constantly complaining and it felt like I was pouring out nothing but negative things. I was loosing my patience on my toddlers. I was crying because of my behavior. I was disappointed in myself. I couldn’t believe some of the things I did and said. I truly felt unrecognizable.

My faith has always been important to me. Even more important and guiding once I became a Mother. I knew at this point where I was that I needed to be put in my place. I needed perspective and I needed an adjustment in my attitude.

When I decided that I needed to do something, a devotional book came to mind. In the past I would watch motivating videos on YouTube in hopes of being inspired or driven in some way. This time, I wanted something tangible and something that I could reference back to when needed.

I also knew a devotional book would strengthen my relationship with God, which is what I really needed. I needed help with Mothering my children because I was tired and burnt out to say the least.

I went onto amazon and I believe I typed in, ‘women’s devotional book’. Trusting God Day By Day: 365 Daily Devotionals by Joyce Meyer was one of the books that showed up in my search.

I choose that specific devotional book because of the numerous great reviews.

Mothers, I want you to try reading a devotional everyday, preferably from a devotional book. I personally suggest a book because more is said then just the devotional itself. Insight is shared, perspective is gained, and the author finds a way to connect you with their words, that you can apply to your every day life.

Try reading a devotional first thing in the morning, if not first thing in the morning then sometime during the day. 

(note: When you are reading your devotional have your bible, a journal, and a pen handy. Write down whatever stands out to you, or write down more specifically, what it means to you.)

I would like to share that reading a devotional everyday has truly helped me with my Mothering. I am more patient then I was, I am more empathetic, and I have gained more self control.

A few slips are going to happen. You’re human. However you will get closer and closer to where you want to be. You got this Mama! I am praying for you!

This is the devotional book I am currently reading daily and I am so grateful!

I’m so incredibly thankful for this journey and my beautiful daughters who have brought new colors into my world. Thank you so much for reading. I hope this will bring more peace to you and your family if you choose to try this.

@coffeewafflesandmotherhood

It’s Been Confirmed! You’re PREGNANT! What to do first!? I have 10 simple things to share!

However it’s been confirmed, you’re pregnant! Hopefully this is very exciting news for you! May be a bit scary, but you are about to embrace an incredible, emotional, exciting journey.

This might be your first or maybe it’s your second, third, fourth, or fifth! Whatever the situation, it’s still a rush finding out you’re pregnant.

Now, there are a ton of other blogs out there that will provide a list of ‘TO DO’s’ once you find out you are growing a little miracle, I’ve actually read a few.

I am a fan of simplicity so I am going to keep this as simple as possible and my hope is you don’t feel overwhelmed after reading my ‘what to do first’.

Let’s get started!

1. FIND A TRUSTED DOCTOR

You really need a doctor that you can trust, are comfortable with, and can confide in. Ask your friends or family for references or do a search on google. Personally, I love google because of reviews. People do not hold back on reviews, which I love and can appreciate. If you find a doctor and don’t have an immediate connection right away it’s ok, don’t stress. You can always switch doctors. I would advise not switching in your third trimester but if you need to switch in the beginning for whatever reason it’s ok. This doctor will be with you for 9 months and will most likely deliver your baby, so make sure you like him or her!

2. START TAKING THOSE PRENATAL VITAMINS

Whether you choose to take store bought prenatal vitamins or whether you have your doctor write you a prescription, start taking them right away. You’re especially going to want to look for prenatal vitamins with folic acid. Your baby grows at a rapid pace and it’s important to make sure you and your baby are getting all the vitamins and minerals to keep him or her growing healthy.

3. DOWNLOAD A PREGNANCY APP OR GET A PREGNANCY BOOK

I am personally a fan of the ‘What To Expect’ App and the ‘What To Expect When You’re Expecting’ books! They both stand as a great guide, to well, what to expect when being pregnant! You’re informed with what’s going on with your baby at the moment and the constant body changes you’re going through. As well as a few things you may have been wondering about. Both of these will walk you week by week, month by month, and trimester to trimester. Definitely take advantage to be more informed with what’s going on with you and your baby.

4. GET EXCITED

Being pregnant is a journey on it’s own! Even if this is your second or third child, every pregnancy is different. A lot of pregnant women don’t like to get too excited until after the first trimester because the first trimester is the most fragile time. However I’m telling you to get excited! I know you have fears and worries but do your best to always anticipate the best! Buy some pregnancy magazines, start your secret Pinterest boards, look at maternity clothing, look at baby stuff, etc. You have been given a gift, embrace it!

5. TELL A FEW TRUSTED PEOPLE

I say this because during the first trimester you may not be showing but you will be feeling your body adjusting to change. You may experience morning sickness, you will more then likely be very tired, and you may become sensitive to smells. That was totally me in my case. You just never know, but it’s comforting to have someone to talk about it with vs. dealing with these changes by yourself. After the first trimester is typically when the official pregnancy announcement is made, however don’t feel obligated to share the news once the first trimester is over. Share the news when you are ready. Have fun with it though, there are some super creative baby announcements out there.

6. BE MINDFUL OF YOUR DIET

Now that you are pregnant you really need to be mindful and cautious on what you are putting into your body. Alcohol and any other substances are a big no go. Do your best to stay away from junk food and incorporate more fruits and veggies in your every day meals. Smoothies are a great way to go. It’s also OK to indulge on some things! If you get a craving for donuts or chili cheese fries go for it! Just be moderate with those cravings. If you are unsure about something you want to eat always ask your doctor. They will let you know!

7. START A SAVINGS PLAN

Things add up, I’ll say that much. The sooner you start to save, the better. Not only will you be more prepared but starting a savings plan will provide peace of mind. Money is not something you want to stress about when the baby arrives. You will already be dealing with changes and adjusting. Money doesn’t need to be an added stress factor. Start saving now for this little bundle of joy!

8. WRITE DOWN ALL OF YOUR QUESTIONS AND CONCERNS

Questions and concerns will arise at the most random moments. Although google, family, and friends are convenient, it’s best to talk to your doctor with anything on your mind concerning your pregnancy. Don’t assume you will remember what you want to discuss with your doctor at your next appointment. More then likely you will forget! It’s important to write them all down so your doctor is informed with what is going on with you. Your doctor can help ease your mind, provide resources, and offer assurance. Whatever it may be, bring it up to your doctor. I can almost guarantee your question or concern isn’t the first time they’ve heard it.

9. INCREASE YOUR WATER INTAKE

You know water in general is good for you right!? So many benefits! Now that you’re pregnant it’s even more important that you stay hydrated! Stay on that girl, it’s good for you and baby.

10. ENJOY EVERY MOMENT

Take pictures of your growing belly, start a journal, indulge in all things for pregnant women! Take advantage! There will be difficult times where you will be anxious for your pregnancy to be over. I am telling you, it goes by so fast. Before you know your baby will be here. Then they turn 1, 2, 3, 13, 18!! You will just be thinking where the heck did time go and you’ll miss those sweet baby kicks inside of you. Then you’ll start crying……. lol jk. But I’m not! Wahhh!

Just enjoy these moments where he or she is growing. This is such a precious time, and soon your life will never be the same.

 

Wishing you a happy, healthy pregnancy!

@coffeewafflesandmotherhood

Sometimes Your Child Just Needs To Hear You Say, “I’m Sorry.”

Parenting is hard. 

As you have probably heard before parenting does not come with a manual guide, nor will it ever come with a guide because every single parent does parenting differently. There would be no way to accommodate to the variety of parenting styles if a guide even did exist.

I have 2 almost three year old’s and expecting another baby in a few months and I still do not have it figured out. Truth be told, I don’t believe I ever will. However, that does not bother me because I can appreciate that parenting is a journey full of never ending lessons. Some harder then others. I hear teenage years are the hardest. 

Before I became a parent I will admit I imagined it being nothing but easy and well, fun. Full of cute and happy moments. I never once thought about the struggles that come along with welcoming a child into your life.

I just thought about how I would be the ‘best mommy ever’. I am definitely not the best mommy ever FYI

I could not wait to be a mother. It was definitely a dream of mine and a calling I felt an eagerness to fulfill at a very young age. I had my first baby at 26, and I finally felt like this prayer of mine was answered.

When I became a parent, it was better then I ever imagined it to be. It was also way harder then I ever thought. I’m talking way harder. I think the way harder really set in when my husband and I received a second baby by surprise. We were completely caught off guard.

(we received our second baby when our first was 10 months old, to read about that story you can search ‘A Blessing In Disguise’)

Noticing A Blessing In Disguise

When you become a parent, you see things differently. You don’t just see things differently but you have a completely different awareness and understanding.

You look at your parents differently…….in good and bad lighting. Your friends who have had kids for a couple of years now? You feel sorry, because you just didn’t know what they were going through. You can even connect now with strangers almost everywhere you go that are holding a little hand.

You empathize with parents because you know it’s the most amazing and yet hardest privilege.

As a parent you want to do your best for your child. But it’s hard. There are many days where you feel like a complete failure. You also blame yourself for a lot of things that are really out of your control.

We never want to hurt them.

But truth be told, we are going to leave emotional scars on our children.

Now, that’s a real tough pill to swallow especially because we are continuously trying to be the best that we can be.

We do our best to give what we didn’t receive. To be, what are parents were not. To do, what are parent’s didn’t do. As well as, try not to do, what are parents did.

We do our best. But what we think is best, is not always the best and can impact our child in ways we can’t even imagine. Which is a little frightening when you really sit and think about it.

It’s a lot of pressure! We are shaping a life or lives! And one can only hope and pray that the wounds we cause aren’t too severe.

I don’t know what type of scar I am going to leave but I know I will leave one. It may be something I say, something I do, something I choose, something I don’t do…..who knows. But there will be a time, when my child will feel let down by me.

My child is never going to forget it. And neither will yours.

And you may never know what emotional scar you left unless your child has the courage to tell you.

Just about everyone suffers from some type of ‘childhood trauma’. From mild trauma to severe.

You had a parent that always put you down, you had a parent that you felt betrayed you in some way, you had a parent that hit you, you had a parent that suffered from substance abuse, you had a parent that was never honest, you had a parent that was never there, you had a parent that favored your other siblings, you had a parent that didn’t choose you, you had a parent that didn’t believe you, your parent had a temper, your parent embarrassed you, etc……

We all have something that is THERE.

Something that left us confused, upset, concerned, worried, scared, alone, numb…something.

I can tell you, causing you pain was never their intention. Maybe there were other things going on in their life, maybe they were afraid, maybe they thought they were doing a good thing for you…..you know, you just don’t know what was going on in their head at the time. OR…..you don’t really know the results of their ‘childhood trauma’ and how it impacted and shaped their behaviors. Who knows….

(note: If your child is grown, you’re right, you can’t change the past. But you can tell them sorry. That will provide more relief then you know.)

When I look at my daughters I can only pray the scars I leave aren’t too severe. And I hope they will be comfortable enough to tell me when I have hurt their feelings or possibly done something they wish I hadn’t.

I think to myself…..what am I going to do, one day, where I am going to let you down. Even Nemo in the Kids movie ‘Finding Nemo’ said I hate you to his dad, do you remember?

My heart breaks knowing that I won’t be a perfect mom where they will grow up and say their childhood was perfect. It’s unrealistic. That’s not going to happen. I will make mistakes. I know I will, because I already do make mistakes, feel guilt, and have regrets.

It’s something inevitable, it’s going to happen.

Can you think of anything that your parent said to you or did that you have never forgot? Whether it’s big or small you remember exactly how it made you feel. 

I have 3 things I will say to my children often that I hope will always bind us together and strengthen our relationships as years come and go.

I hope by saying these things often my children will have peace of mind and not be severely impacted and haunted for years to come by my actions or words that I have no idea will influence my child in the future.

They are below.

  • I LOVE YOU

I want to make sure I am saying this as much as possible to each child of mine. I hope my child never questions how much love I have for them. It’s not enough to just say it, but telling them why I love them. Expressing to them the joy they bring into my life. Sharing lessons they have taught me. WE know we love our children, but sometimes they don’t hear it enough or feel it enough. They need to hear it and feel it.

  •  I AM PROUD OF YOU

I don’t want to just say those words after they accomplish something like a good grade on a test or a tournament won. I want to say these words just because. I don’t want my children to think they always have to impress me or accomplish something grand to hear these words. I will be proud of them everyday and I want them to know how proud I am to be their Mother.

  • I AM SORRY

This is a huge one. Being a parent, it’s hard to admit our faults. Especially, to our children. We don’t want to admit that we made a mistake or take ownership for something that we have done, because honestly…..sometimes we think we are in the right. WE think we are, but from a child’s perspective it’s completely different.

A child isn’t expecting an apology from their parent, but sometimes they need to hear it to move forward and let that burden go. I plan on saying sorry often. Sorry if I hurt their feelings, sorry if I couldn’t make their soccer game, sorry for saying NO, sorry for not being cool enough, just sorry. I will always be sorry any time I have upset them but I hope one day they will realize why I did the things I did, why I didn’t do the things they wanted and why I am who I am. I know there will be times that they need to hear this from me, and my hope is they can always forgive me

I know I will never be the best, but I will never give up trying to be the best that I can be.

Parenting is hard…..but it’s also the best gift in the world. A true gift from God and a blessing.

mother and daughter on grass
Photo by Daria Obymaha on Pexels.com

 

Thank you for reading! 🙂

 

 

Be Enlightened-Share Your Growth

“Strength and growth come only through continuous effort and struggle.”

-Napoleon Hill


I have always enjoyed writing. Not always anything specific, but just simply writing. It’s very therapeutic and relieving for me. I have tons of notebooks laying around with the most random things written in them as we speak. I get a good chuckle here and there when I rummage through and read them, and other times, lets just say I find myself blushing from embarrassment. What would my husband or kids think if they read this right now….lol oh gosh.

Something I really, really, REALLY, regret doing is throwing away my teen journals. I was so taken back, a lot of the things I wrote were very personal and not the fondest memories when I would re-read my entries. They brought back pain or humiliation that I didn’t want to re-experience every time I re-read them. So like a dummy, I threw them away.

However, now that I am older and more “mature” I would really love to go back and re read what I was feeling in those days and compare to where I am now in my life.

But unfortunately those journals are long gone. It truly breaks my heart, but the lesson I learned in that is don’t throw away your writings. No matter what pain or grief some of your writings may bring, don’t toss them.

Your writings are your own little time capsule and it’s a great way to reflect on how far you’ve come. You may even learn a thing or two from well, YOURSELF.

With all that being said, a couple of days ago I was exploring all the notes I had stored in my phone. When something comes to mind I like to write it down so I don’t forget. 

I stumbled across a list of  my own lines that are ‘life advice’ related that I feel like sharing. After reading my ‘life advice’ I was wondering what the hell I was reading at that moment of writing these lol. They surprised me a little.

I consider myself pretty silly, but sometimes I can get pretty deep.

These are a few of my own little life lessons that I have learned through my own experiences. Maybe you can relate or you can apply my words into your life somehow.

Wishing you happiness and many blessings

Some life advice by yours truly


You can’t unscramble an egg once it’s been scrambled. But you know what you can do…..throw it into a burrito with some potatoes and cheese. 

You are going to make mistakes in your life. Mistakes and failures are inevitable. But that’s part of living. I’m sure you can think of a thing or two you wish you could take back but you can’t go back and hit any type of rewind button. However, you can control your reaction to the matter and how you plan on handling it. Think before you act, and hear the words in your head before you speak are to name a few. Remember, you can’t unscramble an egg once it’s been scrambled. But again, just because it’s scrambled now doesn’t mean you cant make a bad situation a good situation.

Don’t let every decision be like picking a paint color.

First of all, have you ever picked paint colors? It’s a little bit of nightmare, especially when trying to agree on colors with your significant other.

Don’t allow little simple decisions in your life to cause you any type of stress or anxiety. Whatever you pick may not be what you wanted, but be open to surprises and open to embracing something new. And always be confident in whatever you choose. It may not be what you thought…it may be better.

If you were granted a new life you would soon realize it’s not at all what you really wanted.

You are exactly where you need to be. Everything that has happened in your life thus far has been apart of the shaping of where you are now and will continue to shape you through the rest of your life. You would be surprised how much would be taken away in your life right now if you were to have a different life. A different path taken in the past wouldn’t lead you to where you are now. Look for the things in your life right now to be grateful for. And if you’re wishing for a new life, you’re spending too much time comparing your life to someone else’s. Especially…..ESPECIALLY someone on social media. 

Plan on things not going according to plan.

Isn’t this how the cookie always crumbles? It’s usually in your favor or against your favor. It ends up going better then planned or maybe worse. Accept that that is just how it is and laugh at it. Continue to make plans in life and don’t ever stop but if something changes along the way welcome the surprise whether it be good or bad. Whatever happened or happens, has a reason…..whether you know the result of it or not.

Your heart will always lead you in the right direction. It’s up to you to listen to it. 

Our hearts are often ignored. We humans are very fragile, easily manipulated, and very persuasive. Whatever is going on in your life should always be reevaluated from time to time. Our lives get so busy it’s important to pause, take a step back, and recognize where you are. Are you where you want to be…what is it that you truly want in this life.

Allow yourself some alone time with no distractions and listen to what your heart is telling you. You may not be happy with what is saying. No one else knows what your heart is saying but YOU. You are also the only one that can obey it. Whether you listen or not, it has a voice for a reason.

But how does it make you feel?

This is a question to ask yourself often. This question can be asked with almost every little thing that you do. If whatever it is, is making you angry, sad, hurt, bored, frustrated, etc. anything negative basically…it’s time to figure it out. Those types of things in life that aren’t providing happiness and joy are only going to hold you back from reaching even more happiness and joy in your life. Doesn’t necessarily mean you need to “let it all go” but it’s time to look for a solution to change that feeling. It is possible to turn the most dull tasks into pleasant ones. Get creative and open your heart and mind to inspiration.

Scars are medals of obstacles conquered. 

We are often ashamed of our scars. Doing our best to hide them so no one knows the truth. For some, the cut has been so deep they have a difficult time even acknowledging it’s existence.

Be proud of your scars. Your scars tell a story that no one else can. A scar is also something no one else can take away from you. It is yours and you should be owning it. Don’t be afraid or feel a need to hide your scars. Inspire others with your story. You are strong and courageous. You are still here.

Cry with your wounds, for one day the sun shall shine bright again.

Hard things are going to happen in your life. Really hard things. Hard things that leave you gasping for air and leave you feeling alone and confused. When those things happen, cry with your wounds and broken heart. Let your tears fall and feel all those emotions that are ripping through your soul.

Through this horrific rainstorm remember the promise of the rainbow. The sun will shine bright again, it will. Even when it feels like it never ever will. The sun will shine bright again.

Always say thank you, ALWAYS.

First of all, it’s just good manners to say thank you. Second, nobody owes you anything. I know that sounds a little harsh, but no one owes you anything in this life. Everything is earned and worked for.

People do nice things because they want to, not because they have to. Saying thank you often will take you farther then someone who does not appreciate nice gestures.

You always have enough to give.

Whether it be your time, your energy, or even your last dollar…..you will always have enough to serve another person. You get what you give. Plus, it’s proven that giving to others provides more happiness in your life.

There is more then one right way to do something. Be confident in YOUR WAY.

We don’t live in a black and white world. We live in a world that is full and colorful. No one in the world is you, and no one can do things like YOU do. Rather then trying to follow the crowd, discover your own way and be confident in your own direction or method. Be willing to share that way with others. But encourage others your way isn’t the only way. Help others find THEIR way. The destination may be the same, but the path doesn’t have to be. Find the path that matches YOUR needs.

You don’t always get what you want, but you get what you need.

Things happen in life that are unpredictable.

These types of incidents are a blessing in disguise. You may realize it sooner or you may realize it ten years later. Maybe even later. Be grateful when you can recognize it.

We are always provided the tools we need to help us and guide us in this life. May not come in the prettiest wrapping but all things are gifts. Some things have to happen in order for other things to happen. Please remember, that God loves you. He can see the whole picture, we can’t. Trust him.


I would love to hear from! Share your growth!

Do you have any life advice to share or maybe something someone told you that you never forgot!

Please comment with any thoughts or concerns! Have a great day! Thank you for stopping by!

-Marie Elizabeth

 

 

 

 

Babe, It’s Time To Celebrate Yourself

When your child is doing exceptional in school or decides to do their chores without being told you reward them and you rave about it.

When your stubborn, little toddler finally goes ‘potty’ all by themselves, you praise them, sing hallelujah, and you have a happy dance party, right?

When your husband actually listens and does what you ask him to do for once he gets lucky (wink, wink) and, you REMEMBER this moment. #isthisreallife

When your best friend surprises you and pays the tab for the drinks you acknowledge them, and you pay the tab on the next go around.

When your coworker covers your shift, so you can attend a family event, you recognize them with their favorite coffee or a thank you card. At least I hope you do.

Are we sensing a pattern here yet?

Whenever someone does good, we remember, acknowledge, and celebrate.

However……..

There is someone in your life that has been neglected for quite some time. This person definitely deserves some praise and acknowledgement.

WITHOUT DOUBT, this person has earned their right to treat and celebrate themselves, damn it!

This person is hardworking, dedicated, and constantly putting others needs, happiness, and demands above their own.

If you haven’t figured it out, that person is you! YES, YOU! I am talking to you!

It’s time to celebrate, YOU! It’s time to give a little back to yourself! It’s time to enjoy oneself as they say!

You put up with, and have put up with, a lot of shit. You know it, and I know it. Even your pets probably know it. They do don’t they…..

Your needs are just as important, your hard work needs to be acknowledged, and you need to be doing good for yourself because like I mentioned previously, you’ve earned it!


TIME TO PAINT THE TOWN RED FRIEND!

Before we do so, let’s do a toast:

To celebrating the miracle that you are.

To giving thanks to all the things and people that have served you.

To recognizing that everything about you is precious and unique.

To acknowledging and accepting that there is no one else like you, and that this is a beautiful thing.

And to always enjoy all of life’s offerings.

Babe, it’s time to Celebrate You. CHEERS.


It’s time to stop putting your needs and wants to the side, and it’s time to stop acting like what you do everyday is not extraordinary.

Every day, is a miraculous day if you are still breathing.

Reward yourself, treat yourself, take care of yourself, love yourself.

Celebrating you from time to time is only going to benefit you and those around you. The better mood you’re in, the better you will be to everyone else. That’s kind of common sense, right? Yet, here most of us are, putting ourselves last and not acknowledging all the amazing things we have done so far in our lives!

You’re not being selish. Don’t think that. You are taking care of you, and you are realizing that you are important too.

HOW DO I START CELEBRATING MYSELF? (It’s been that long or I’ve never really done that)

  • First, stop being so hard on yourself and thinking you’re undeserving of a few favors now and then. You are here and living, that alone deserves some recognition and appreciation.
  • Second, don’t always expect others or wait for others to treat you or celebrate your accomplishments (big or small). It is not up to other people to make you happy. Recognize the hard work that YOU have done and reward and celebrate yourself.
  • Third, think back to your childhood and write down what you really enjoyed doing when you were young. Begin to incorporate those things back into your life. Guard your time to do what you enjoy. That is treating yourself.

THE OUTCOME?

You will be happier. And aren’t we all striving for this?

It will open new doors for you, a happier you will benefit all the relationships in your life, you will become more productive, and you’ll want to help others see the value in themselves.

You will be able to help others recognize that they are important and worthy of celebrating themselves.

You will reap the benefits of guarding your time to celebrate, you. In taking the time to celebrate you and recognizing your blessings, you will be blessing others.

Maybe you celebrate yourself all the time. If you do, that is fantastic! Continue doing it and don’t ever stop! If you are not in this position, you may know someone who needs to hear this. Let them know they are deserving and encourage them to do great things for themselves.

Some people just need a little word of encouragement to get them doing what they enjoy doing again. In some way, you should be celebrating YOU everyday.

Treat yourself, take care of yourself, celebrate yourself, love yourself. 

AND If you needed a sign to do something nice for yourself, let this be your sign!!

With all this being said, don’t be so hard on yourself. Have an amazing day and go give YOU some lovin’.

-xoxo

Marie Elizabeth

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How do you celebrate yourself, let me know in the comments! 

Peace&LOVE

insta- @rereelizabeth__

facebook-@rereelizabethh

stone artwork
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 BOOKS TO INFLUENCE AND ENERGIZE YOU

flowers on book
Photo by Dids on Pexels.com

“The More That You Read, The More Things You Will Know. The More That You Learn, The More Places You’ll Go.” Dr. Seuss

He has a point……….doesn’t he?!

Below are 5 amazing books that I feel have either strengthened my mindset, allowed me to view things in life in a different perspective, encouraged me to be more aware of my surroundings or lifestyle, and, overall, I would say have helped me with struggles with personal growth or change that I have been seeking in myself.

If you are ever in a standstill in your life, read a book! There are so many lessons to be learned!

I PROMISE YOU WILL GAIN SOMETHING FROM READING THESE BOOKS BELOW

Grab a cup of joe, a warm blanket, and create a space that is comforting. And start reading!

“…you have hidden treasures within you.” – Dale Carnegie 

I LOVE all of these books and I look forward to sharing another 5 BOOKS TO READ soon!

If you have read any of these I am curious on your thoughts, if you agree or disagree! I want to hear from you!

Knowledge is power my friend.

tip: Have a highlighter near you, when you come across something that really stands out highlight it! It’s nice to go back and re-read what caught your attention in some way!

 


1. THE FRED FACTOR- EVERY PERSONS GUIDE TO MAKING THE ORDINARY EXTRAORINDARY BY MARK SANBORN

beafred.jpg

This book is short and powerful. It’s only 80 pages! However, it withholds  SO much value! Who’d of thought of a mailman being so inspiring, YOU WILL WANT TO BE LIKE FRED, I guarantee it. I believe many of us think you need money to make a difference but that is so not the case. This book underlines how you can create value in other peoples lives without paying a dime! It is eye opening and will help you to appreciate where you are right now in your life. If you need help having a positive attitude this is your book to read! I have highlighted so much in this book!

2. HOW TO WIN FRIENDS AND INFLUENCE PEOPLE- DALE CARNEGIE

dalec

Dale……Dale. My man, Dale. This book is absolutely AMAZING and I have learned so much from reading this book. It’s small print with a little over 200 pages. I cannot wait to read more by this author because of the helpfulness and new visions that I have gained from reading his book. This book is so well written and provides such great direction toward having a happy life and being successful in whatever you are doing! If you are in business I would definitely recommend reading this book!

3. EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE- DR. DAVID WALTON

EI

This was an interesting and self reflecting read, I really enjoyed getting my mind to think outside the box. This book allowed me to observe myself how others may see me. Not only that, this book helped me to develop more self awareness in myself and how to empathize more with others. We can be so quick to judge sometimes. Not just with others but with ourselves. We are constantly telling ourselves things that aren’t true. We need to be more respectful, mindful,  and more patient with all things.

4. RICH DADS CASHFLOW QUADRANT- ROBERT T. KIYOSAKI

cashflow

Money can be a sensitive topic to most people. To some, its a forbidden subject or not proper to talk about with others. However, this book just lays it all out there which I love. This book helps you to understand the game of money. It helps you to identify which cash quadrant you fall under, and how to get where you want to be financially. Many of us have bad habits with money or we just really don’t know how to handle it. This book will teach you discipline. Hopefully after reading this, money issues will be a thing of the past. I still have a lot to learn! But this is a great start!

5. THE FOUR AGREEMENTS- DON MIGUEL RUIZ

four

I feel this is a pretty popular book but I can understand why! It is powerful and soulful. You will be transformed with a new way of thinking and living. This book is great for self growth, strengthening your spirituality, and opens the doors to new opportunities. One of my favorite things it talks about is the power of our word. Our words are so powerful and can do so much. You will become incredibly mindful with so many things after reading this book. I highly recommend this one!


 

SO there ya go! This is a small list but holds such great power if you allow yourself to learn and grow!

“Free Your Mind, And The Rest Will Follow.” – En Vogue

I am currently reading some great books right now that I look forward to sharing soon! IF YOU WANT TO DO AN ACT OF KINDNESS……SHARE THIS FOR ALL THE BOOK LOVERS!

SIDENOTE: If there’s a book you recommend, please comment or message me! I love books that challenge my way of thinking or can promote self growth in any way! 


 Mmm….coffee and donuts. Have a blessed day! PEACE & LOVE.

a book cup of coffee and flavoured donut on square white ceramic bowl
Photo by Studio 7042 on Pexels.com

 

 

“Primero Dios – GOD First” Find Yourself Through Your Roots

 

TijuanaTijuana, Mexico

“The greatest challenge in life is discovering who you are. The second greatest is being happy with what you find.” – unknown

Have you ever felt lost in life. Or possibly unsure of your journey, maybe you feel like your life is in a standstill and you don’t know what to do.

Maybe you feel like there is a part of you that is empty and eager to be fulfilled. We all experience that feeling once in awhile, and for different reasons. We all have a story.

I do believe discovering your roots is a huge step into finding yourself again. Being adopted is what lead me down my path. This is my journey.

Being Adopted made me feel lost, has anything ever made you feel lost?

Do you know anyone that is adopted? Maybe you have a sister or brother that is adopted or maybe even a best friend. Have you ever talked to them about how they are feeling? How being adopted has impacted them….how it has shaped them into who they are. Have they expressed an eager want to meet their biological family to you?

They have possibly accepted that there’s a good chance they will never meet any biological family. If they’ve accepted that, you probably have to. I want to encourage anyone adopted or know anyone in search of family members to take advantage of our technology. Ancestry lead me to mine without even trying.

(My name is Marie. This is actually a selfie I took right before we left to meet my family for the first time. It was my birthday and I was so nervous! I posted this on my Instagram and no one really knew I was doing this except family and a few close friends.)

selfie

I’m adopted. I was adopted when I was just infant. I have no memory of the process nor do I remember ever being told I was adopted. I just always knew. My birth mom was not in the best mental state, and my birth father was not a US Citizen. Having just adopted my daughter I can understand and empathize the struggles and toll it takes on everyone through the process. I actually feel very thankful that I was able to experience the process of adopting before actually meeting my bio family.

Life is full of different perspectives. It helps to take a step back, reevaluate your life and ask yourself what is it that you want…

“Perspective is the way we see things when we look at them from a certain distance and it allows us to appreciate their true value.” – Rafael E. Pino

(We officially adopted this little doll 2 months prior to meeting my family! This all couldn’t have happened at a more perfect time! The way she came into our lives permanently is whole different story! Ill save that for another time 😉 . I will say though, she has brought so much joy and happiness into our family. She is a total blessing and I thank God for her. )    

ella

Don’t Judge Another Persons Journey -we are all on our own path. Be patient with yours. You may not know what you’re looking for but just start searching.

Please do not feel sorry for me or anyone else that is adopted. Adoption is an amazing thing. Who in the world knows where I would be right now if God didn’t choose this path for me. I am incredibly thankful. But that is a huge reason those that are adopted don’t go off shouting or sharing, “Hey, I’m adopted.” A typical response we get is, “I’m sorry.” Which, I can imagine makes some people feel bad because they are thinking….wow,  I cant imagine not knowing who my mom, dad or siblings are. I understand that. But don’t tell an adoptee “I’m sorry.” It makes us feel bad, and afterwhile you keep it to yourself because you’re tired of hearing that. You also get tired of answering questions you really don’t know the answers to….but deep down inside you wish you did know. If you know anyone adopted or adopting get excited for them! Adoption itself it pretty remarkable journey.

Alright, that’s a little backround for you. Now, I will share how this all came to be.

Ask and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. Matthew 7:7

Being adopted and not knowing an bio family lead me to wonder a lot about my ethnicity. I can’t begin to tell you how many times I have been asked, “What nationality are you?” Many times my reply was “mostly Mexican.” Because well, that’s all I knew and was told. And then, I would be told countless times, “Really, I see middle eastern in you.” Or, I would get asked, “are you middle eastern?” and I would just start saying, “Yes…yes I am.” (hahah) and they would say, “I knew it!” (hahah who knows! At that time I didn’t know!) It became rather funny just making up ethnicities for myself. My friends that knew my life had fun with it too. This all lead me to ask myself then, what the heck am I?! I was told numerous times by my family, “you’re full Mexican” and I would argue saying that I had to be something else because everyone thinks I’m something else. I was convinced and I was just curious. Once I gave birth to my daughter I had to know more about my DNA and background. Not just for myself, but for my daughter and any other possible children I might have in the future.

(My first born. My little answered prayer. Being adopted and never knowing any biological family is what made me actually want to be a Mom so bad. I wanted someone that was apart of me if that makes sense.

To be a Mother became a dream of mine when I was very young and I always feared and asked what if I can’t have children. I’ll never know what that connection feels like….it scared me. You can imagine the emotions I felt holding this little baby that actually shared my DNA. I can’t express how much love and joy this little girl gave me when she was born.)

firstborn

You have to learn how to control your thoughts and not let your worries and regrets consume you. 

For 27 years, I never knew what my ethnicity was, and then, because of ancestry my answer was just a click away. My results read; Native American, Italian, Greek, Iberian……and less then 3% Middle Eastern. Go figure. This was a huge and very exciting thing for me!! I can’t really describe the joy of finding out this information.

Now if you are unfamiliar with the way Ancestry works. Here it is in a nutshell. You order kit, you receive kit, you spit in a tube, you mail it, and then receive results via email in about a month. I currently have access to my detailed DNA and I can see if I have any DNA matches with family members.

Its amazing, I definitely recommend this service even if you are not adopted. Keep in mind, I didn’t do ancestry to find family. I did it to answer a prolonged question that had been nagging me for years. When I received my results the only DNA matches I had at that time were 3rd cousins and below. I did reach out to one of them but we couldn’t nail it down to exactly how we were related. Still in contact with him today via social media.

“Remember and honor family who come and gone before you, because they had a hand in shaping who you are.” – unknown 

(A small preview of my DNA results via Ancestry)

dna results

Sometimes what you’re looking for in life comes when you’re not looking at all. The unexpected is what changes our lives.

Fast forward about a year and half. I receive an email from Ancestry out of the blue in June of this year. The last time I had visited the Ancestry web was a few months prior. The message read, “Hola Marie! Me sorprendi al obtener mis resultados y ver somos primas en primer grado.”

I don’t know spanish very well, so when I  first read that my response was, “que?” haha! Jk…kinda of.

In other words, this translates to, “Hi Marie! I was surprised to get my results and see that we are first cousins.”

I of course messaged her back explaining that I was adopted and didn’t know much about my biological family, just my biological parents name. I provided the name of my bio dad and you know what her response was….”OMG, that is my Mom’s brother!” Crazy right! Strait out of Telenovela! *Where are my Jane the Virgin fans at!*

“Marie’s life now was the stuff of Telenovelas.” -Narrator 

Lily

 

MI PRIMA! (MY COUSIN! The one that set this all up! AND our first selfie. )

She proceeded to answer any questions I had and let me know how huge our family was. It was incredible. We exchanged numbers and just began texting. It was overwhelming and emotional for both us in different ways. By the end of that day, my whole family knew of me and my cousin finding me via ancestry. Which BTW was completely by accident! She joined ancestry for a whole different reason! She basically demanded that we need to visit and that everyone wanted to meet me. Especially those family members that actually knew about me since the day I was born. The only thing was almost all of my family resided in Tijuana, Mexico. A complete foreign place to me. I was being asked to bring my husband and daughters to a part of Mexico I’ve never been…. with people that I have never met. I was very hesitant as you can imagine.

After many texts exchanges we agreed on a date and time to travel to see everyone. We would meet in San Diego and then go from there.

“Have faith in your journey. Everything had to happen exactly as it did to get you where you’re going next!” -Mandy Hale

(I had butterflies the whole time driving to California from Arizona)

windmill

I kept thinking to myself is this real life, is this really happening? Am I really going to go through with this? Something that I thought would never happen or even planned on happening was HAPPENING!

I let my family and closest friends know my plans and I could tell they were thinking this whole ordeal was a little crazy. Probably thinking, this is dangerous. Yes, they are my family, but at this point they were still strangers as well. I was definitely reminded that countless times by close people in my life.

My husband surprisingly was never worried.  I began to think all these what ifs…..and it really freaked me out. I became scared and untrusting, thinking of all these different scenarios. I actually reached out to my cousin and allowing her to know that I was nervous and scared. Her response to my fear was so genuine and so assuring I knew I had to go through with this. I told my fear to shut the eff up!

“Go find yourself first, so you can find me.” -Rumi

Long story short…WE DID IT! We ended up traveling to San Diego and agreed to meeting at a fun little Italian Restaurant before traveling to Mexico together the following day. I ate way to much bread with oil and vinegar. Remember I mentioned it was my birthday too! Talk about an amazing birthday present! I got to meet my family! We hit it off instantly! Thank God my husband nor myself said the word, “biscuit.” That was our code word in case we had to make a run for it. Come on now, of course we thought about them kidnapping us.

(Waiting in front of Buca di Beppo to meet my cousin for the first time! Excited!)

buca

The interaction was so great we decided to go through with staying the night with them! Close your mouth, its not that crazy, is it?! Her family is amazing! Now I am just reminiscing how great of an experience this was and so thankful I trusted God for this gift of meeting my family. I know this was a gift. I just do.

The best things in life are on the other side of terror.

The following morning we all piled into an SUV and traveled to VIVA LA MEXICO! Oh my gosh it was amazing!! We were scheduled to meet the whole family at 1pm for a gathering. Beforehand we ate some delicious food, they showed us around the city, and we took some fun pictures. One being on a donkey painted like a Zebra. Check it out!

“If you want to change the world, go home and love your family.” – Mother Theresa

BREAKFAST! Mmmm……que rico!

food

Yummy Treats

tjtreats

Talk about awesome architecture! I swear, sometimes I look at things and I’m like, “Man made that….”. My husbands typically laughs at me. 

tj

arch

Look at this beautiful church. Its an open church, there was actually a funeral going on when we walked by. Anyone can go in during any ceremony. Whatever service you have done at this Catholic Church is welcomed to anyone. 

church.JPG

I really enjoyed the markets while visiting! Very authentic and captivating.

market4

market3

market2

A Downtown Mall…very cool and original. It was almost like a maze. 

shops

 

 

 

 

 

 

Crickets anyone? I’m not kidding, the ones on the left are crickets! No gracias!

crickets

OH HEY! It’s the DONKEY I mentioned! Hey Ruben!

ruben

In finding yourself you will have moments you can’t put into words.

The afternoon came closer and we began to make our way to my Uncles house. Butterflies began to swarm in my belly. I was about to meet a group of Uncles, Aunts, and Cousins. I was about to meet the people I always wondered about. I was about to have a dream become a reality, and my husband and daughters got to share this amazing moment with me.

This was so special to me I’m getting choked up just writing this. I felt alone so many times not knowing these people, curious as to the characteristics that run in the family, facial features that I picked up, and inherited traits that I may have acquired. This moment was very surreal.

Some of my Cousins! (Primas)

primas

We had gorditas for lunch. These were being made while we sat around a table just laughing and crying! Like I said before, this was very emotional for all of us. The food was SOOOOOO GOOD! I’m craving some now!

gorditas

Everything you will come to you at the right moment, be patient and always be grateful.

Many smiles, many hugs, many laughs, plenty of happy tears and plenty of food happened that afternoon. My face even got pushed into a cake! But I’m not sharing that picture! The love that was surrounding all of us that day is indescribable. This moment I shared, was something I will treasure forever and I already cant wait to plan our next trip and see my family! Hope you all enjoyed getting to know me a little better.

Special thanks to  for its amazing service and countless opportunities. Thanks to my cousin and her family for arranging this gathering and taking a leap of faith to allow us into their lives. Huge thanks to my family and friends that supported this adventure and kept us in their prayers. And one more huge thank you to my family in Tijuana that welcomed us with loving arms and took such great care of us! Love you all!

SOME OF YOU might be asking wait….did she meet her birth dad or does she know anything about her birth mom? Does she have other siblings out there too?

I guess you’ll have to wait and see.

Embrace the Journey, Embrace Change, Embrace life. Go Find Yourself. Know Your Roots.


Share this story, comment, or ask me any questions!

Thank you for taking your time to read some of my journey! As my family says,

“Primero Dios!” If God wants it to happen, it will happen.