Thursday, July 31, 2008

Our fake vacation!

I'm currently typing this from the bed of our lovely hotel room in the exotic Carlsbad California. Yep, we traveled a WHOLE 30 miles to go on vacation. Obviously that's not really a vacation so I've been calling it our fake vacation. We just wanted to get away for a few days, but didn't want to deal with the time and money of going anywhere that is a real distance away. My mom took Joaquin for a night so Dan and I had a whole 24 hours to ourselves. I forgot what it was like to sit by a pool and do nothing. It was actually kind of unsettling and I ended up kind of bored! Also, my boobs were enormous and in so much pain by noon today. For those not in the know, I still nurse and not nursing for over 24 hours when you're used to nursing every few can be quite the shock to the boobage. My mom dropped off Joaquin at about 5pm and he was going full speed until he finally passed out at about 9. Now we're just gorging ourselves on cable, it's quite exciting since we don't have it at home. Um, I *heart* Bravo now. Good thing we're cheap because I could see that channel eating up any and all of my "spare" time! Tomorrow is going to be a busy day of playing at the pool and the kids water play area. We'll also eat, watch more cable during nap and then probably go for a walk or two. I'm actually quite looking forward to it! We'll spend another night and then make the big drive back home on Saturday.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

I got a haircut, I got a haircut!

And it's rather dramatic, even for me! I'm still getting used to it, but I think I really like it.

Yet another new haircut!

I actually found out some really horrible horrible news today. I really don't have the energy to share it right now, but I will tell you that I have another funeral to go to soon. I'm distracting myself with my new hair. Maybe I'll update when we have more solid details.

Monday, July 28, 2008


I got Joaquin a pair of boots the other day and he adores them. He now refuses to wear any other shoes. He even tried to go to sleep in them tonight, but I was finally able to talk him out of them...too bad, it would have made for another cute shot.

rock star in training

kickin back playing some tunes

but he finally made it to the bubbles

painting his leg


toddler bed update

I realized today that I told you all about getting the toddler bed all set up and then totally left you hanging!

We are still in transition, but I'm very happy with our current state and plan to stick here for a bit.

I nurse Joaquin in his bed and he stays there until he wakes up, usually right around 2 am. It took about a week or so, but I'm finally sleeping in my bed during this time as well. When he wakes up he'll just cry out a couple of times and I'll go get him and bring him to bed with us. There, he'll nurse for a minute or two and fall back asleep. He was waking up at least one or two times more within the night to nurse, but I managed to cut those out by telling him that "milk went sleepies". Luckily it didn't seem to bother him much and he went right back to sleep after a bit of cuddling. He still wakes up for a 5 am session and then nurses again when it's time to wake up right around 7. I'm trying to cut out that 5 am session, but when I told him milk went sleepies this morning he fuh-lipped out. I just didn't have the energy to follow through and was afraid he would totally wake up which would then mean I would have to wake 5 am. So totally not worth it at the moment, but I may give it another go tomorrow.

So yeah, it's working out! He did manage to fall out the other night, I'm not sure how that happened, but I heard a big THUD and I jumped up to get him. He was on the floor stunned and then just started wailing. Poor little man. But other than that he still happily goes sleepies in his bed every night and doesn't freak out when he wakes up. I can't ask for much more!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

armpit love

Joaquin loves my armpits. It doesn't matter if the hair is long and fuzzy, short and stubbly or freshly shaven. Doesn't matter if they're clean and right out of the shower or sweaty and stinky. Great visuals, right? When he's nursing or I'm holding him he digs his little monkey fingers in them almost scraping at the skin. When he's in the ergo on my back he has one hand in each armpit, like human handlebars. If his nails are long it hurts like a bitch, but if they're short it's just a bit of an annoyance. I try and move his hand, but they always find their way back. The other day, I was sitting in a restaurant booth with him. He was starting to get squirmy and I raised my arm to put it around him. He caught a glimpse of my pit and he kneeled down, stuck his fingers in and started poking around, like a little chipmunk. It calmed him down for a few minutes so I just sat there eating with my arm up while he played with my armpit. What the hell?? Weird, right? The other morning he kissed it. Today he licked it. In the car I asked him if my armpits make him happy and he sang "happy happy happy!" while nodding his head in agreement. Hey, whatever makes you happy, kid.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Not as bad as I thought it would be.

While it was still an exhausting and draining day, it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. We didn't make it to the mass, I just didn't think Joaquin would handle it and it just felt way too hypocritical to me. We got to the church as mass was ending and joined in the procession to the cemetery. The procession passed their home and the murder scene which was right across the street. There was a huge memorial of sorts covered in flowers and signs on the sidewalk in front of their home. When we got to the cemetery, I was shocked by how many people were there. Luckily Joaquin fell asleep on the drive over there, so he was asleep in the ergo the whole time. I didn't really want him around for all of this, but I didn't have anywhere else for him to go, either way, it didn't end up being an issue. Ms. S seemed to be holding herself together for the most part, I don't know how she did it. She did say a few words and expressed how much it meant to her that so many from the community were there to pay their respects. I talked to her afterwards and she gave me a big hug and said she had been thinking about me and told me to hold on to my sweet boy and to never let him go.

What really struck me as the most disturbing was the huge gang element present. I don't know if his death was gang related, people have said it wasn't, but it was just so there, in your face. As I looked around many were wearing shirts that said "Logan" or "Loganeros", it just seemed so disrespectful and wrong to me. Couldn't they just put it away for this? A funeral? I also recognized former students from Perkins, only they weren't kids anymore, but hard and mean looking men and women. It was weird. Because of the schools I've chosen to work at, I've seen what gangs look like, but I've never seen anything like this. It was almost like they were proud, proud of a fallen solider. It sickened me. Here was my friend, grieving over her lost son and they were proud.

I don't know. Today is bringing me to a place where I'm reflecting a bit on where I choose to work. I'm not sure I'm up for this anymore. Last year was hard, and even though "this" had nothing to do with my current school, it makes me wonder if scenes like this may be in my future. Things are getting a lot worse in these neighborhoods and I'm not sure I have the strength to be around to see it. My priorities seem to have changed.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Not looking forward to tomorrow

I'm going to a funeral tomorrow. I didn't know the young man who died personally, but I knew him through his mom whom I've known for most of my life.

My mom taught at a school in Barrio Logan, it was then called Lowell, and I went there from kinder through fourth grades. Ms. S was the lunch supervision lady who always told us to eat our fruit and veggies. Her daughter was also the same age as me and in most of my classes. When our family moved and I went to school in the suburbs, my mom still worked there and I still saw Ms. S on and off until I graduated High School. When I graduated I got a job as an assistant at this same school, which was then renamed Perkins. I worked along side Ms. S for five years, I was a classroom assistant and she ran the copy room, scolding me if I left behind a mess. Then I became a teacher and got my own classroom and Ms. S became my classroom assistant. She watched me grow up and then watched me become a teacher, helping me as I flailed about that first year. We worked together in our classroom for five years before I moved onto High School. She told me all the stories about her and her family and Bobby was often included. Since then I have seen her a hand full of times. I still visit Perkins and she is always so happy to see me and adores Joaquin. It is such a tight knit community, we all keep in touch one way or another, year after year.

All the kids in the Barrio know Ms. S. They know where she lives and she knows all their business. If I couldn't figure out why a student was acting up I put her on the job and in days she had the story. The kids knew her home was safe and often went there when needed. One mid summer I got a call from her when she had one of our students crying in her living room. His brother had just been killed in a gang shooting the night before. I drove over and we all cried in her living room together.

When I heard what had happened to her son earlier this week, I pushed it out of my mind. I didn't want to even imagine what she was going through. But then I got a call today from one of the teachers at Perkins, telling me the funeral details. She told me that the rest of the staff kept telling her, "make sure Ciria knows, make sure Ciria knows." I know I have to be there, but I don't want to. I don't want to see what kind of pain losing a child can bring. I don't want to hear it. But I have to be there, I have to give my respects, I have to do what's right. The story is so sad, so scary. Losing a son has got to be hard enough, but to lose him the way she did. I'm sure she was one of the first to get to him as it happened right across the street from her home. I can't imagine what she's going through, her pain. I don't want to see it. I don't want to imagine it. I don't want to hear it. But I will. I'll do what is right. But I'm afraid.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


I took Joaquin to the in-laws today to get a few hours off. My plan was to go home and do some cleaning, nothing exciting. But on my way home, my mom called and invited me over for breakfast. I reminded her that I didn't have Joaquin and she still wanted me. Shocking! Often when I go visit, she immediately goes for Joaquin and I rarely even get a "hello". Dan and I snicker about it all the time, so I was pretty surprised she actually wanted to just hang out with me and not her dear grandson. I went over and we enjoyed a leisurely gossip filled breakfast on her deck.

Then she invited me out for pedicures. A pedicure?!?! I haven't had one of those since my friend's bachelorette spa day back in May... of 2007. The time before that was in the last month of my pregnancy waiting for Joaquin to pop out. So off we went and got our toes done. I love getting my toes done, it just makes me happy and they're so purdy now!


I normally don't wear any polish or color on them so I decided to go all out and funky and get a dark dark purple. They make me smile.

Thanks mommy, you made my day!

Sunday, July 13, 2008

The toddler bed

I found a toddler bed on Craigslist the other day and snatched it up. I've been thinking about starting the transition of getting Joaquin in his own bed for a while now, I just didn't know how or when to start. We currently have his crib attached to our bed in a side car position so we can all co-sleep in peace. It's working, but at the same time I feel like we wake him up with our moving and that he could possibly nurse just a little less often in the night if the boob weren't so readily available. I would like to keep the crib where it is so we still have our space during the transition, plus we're keeping an open door policy. He can come in whenever he needs to. I know some nights that means all night, but I'm fine with this being a long transition, especially since I'm not sure I'm ready for him to be away from me at night.

I set up the bed at night when he was asleep, so the next morning he immediately jumped in while asking "jeebeesh, jeebeesh?" That is Joaquin for "sleepies" by the way. So he knew what it was for and knew it was his! That day we went on a field trip to Ikea to buy bedding and other pretty stuff. During his nap I got it all set up and again when he awoke he was in love.

His new toddler bed!

He played all day yesterday in his new room and bed. I was going to wait a few days to try and get him to sleep in the bed, but figured he was so into it now, why not? The first time we laid down he nursed for a bit but got quickly distracted with the new view, it was cool, I couldn't blame him. We got up and about a half hour later he was asking for "jeebeesh" so we were off to try again. This time he was ready. It took a few minutes but he soon nursed himself to sleep and I got up while he slept soundly for about an hour. An incredibly loud ghetto birdie (aka helicopter) woke him up, but he again nursed right back to sleep. I figured I would go to sleep when he woke up again and would just take him to bed with me. It never happened! I finally went to bed with him still in his, but I just could not sleep. Finally at about 1am I got up and brought him to bed with me. Every tiny sound he made through the monitor jarred me awake from my half sleep and I just missed him so! Once I got him in bed with me I was out. He could have probably easily slept on his own in there for a few more hours, it was me that was having the transition issues! Right now he is happily napping in there and has been for the past two hours.

Obviously this is all going to be much harder on me than him, but how can you not want to cuddle up with this??

My beautiful boy

Saturday, July 12, 2008


Wow, it's been over a week since I posted last. Sorry about that. I just got sucked into a couple of projects that were using all of my free computer time.

I'm making a family photo album for each year, starting with 2006. I have a butt-load of pictures so going through them all, choosing pictures, editing and then putting together the album took a surprising amount of time. I ordered it through, I haven't gotten it yet, but I should by the beginning of the week. It's crazy because I had the least amount of photos for 06, 2007 and eventually 2008 are going to be huge! I think I might go with for the next one though. They seem a bit cooler and a little less expensive. So expect me to disappear again when I start working on the next one.

My other project consisted of doing some cleaning around here. I got the carpets cleaned on Wednesday, and to prepare for it I had to clear out a bunch of crap. It's amazing how much crap we collect. The carpets look so much better and the house smelled like oranges afterwards. The same day I also got down on my hands and knees and scrubbed the floors. My house was sooo clean...for like a day. How does a small toddler destroy a clean home so quickly? I think Bella helps. Anyway, we used citradry, it was affordable and he did a great job, check 'em out.

Joaquin also had a cold last week and now I have it. I have to admit, I'm in a pretty crappy mood. I'm super tired, but can't sleep because every time I try and rest I go into a coughing fit. Joaquin was all snotty and congested, I'm not, it's all in my chest and it sucks. Dan took Joaquin out and about because apparently I'm not a fun person to be around today. Well, I'm off to try and rest while I can. I'll be back soon with photos of Joaquin's new...dah dah dahhh, wait for it....toddler bed! I know, right?

Wednesday, July 2, 2008


Since our camping trip I’ve been dog-tired and not the nicest of people to be around. So much so, that I snapped at my mom yesterday and said she was passive aggressive because she asked if I needed help putting dishes in the dishwasher. Yeah. Ouch. Sorry mommy! Thank goodness my in-laws called on Monday telling me they missed Joaquin terribly and reminded me that if I needed any alone time that they were available. So yesterday afternoon I called them and took them up on their offer. I dropped Joaquin off at about 10 this morning and spent the rest of the day by. my. self. It was awesome. I didn’t get much done; just did some blogging, colored my hair, picked up the kitchen and vacuumed, but I so needed it. When I picked him up at three, I was a new mama. This evening went so smoothly, and any little Joaquinism just rolled right off of me. Hopefully tomorrow will go just as well.

Another camping trip!

This past weekend we ventured out on our 4th camping trip with the little dude. By far, this was the best trip yet. As he gets older, it gets more and more fun…more work, but more fun. Not only is he at an age where he is now able to enjoy camping more, we had quite a bit of little people company.

We were one of 15 families, all with at least one child of toddler age. It was Joaquin heaven. Dirt, kids and freedom! Seriously, this kid was ALL over the place. He really isn’t a “clingy stick by mama” kind of kid. He’s more of a “hey, there’s people I must say hi to wayyyyy over there” kind. While chasing after him drove me a bit insane, it was pretty awesome to see how independent and social he has become. On the last day, I finally tried just letting him go wander to see if he came back. Sure enough, once I was out of his sight (he was never out of mine), he turned around and wandered right back.

We all took over about nine sights at Paso Picacho in the Cuyamaca area. It was beautiful. It got kind of warm by noon, so on Saturday we took the kids to Green Valley Falls and waded in the water. On the way back both Joaquin and Lila fell asleep and took a blissful nearly two-hour nap that let us parents’ catch our breath. That evening we had a huge potluck with all the families while the kids ran wild and free. That was followed by s’mores and beverages for the adults. Packing up on Sunday kind of sucked, but packing up always sucks, especially under the hot hot sun.

I took a ridiculous amount of photos, here are a few (I lied, a bunch)…just click on one of the pics to see the rest over on my flickr stream.

dirty joaquin

nekky kids

dan at falls

climbing out

one with the dirt

best buddies