Saturday, January 31, 2009

25 Random Things About Me!!! (OMG!!!)

I was tagged by several friends at Facebook to reveal random things about myself. So, I decided to, also, include them here:

1. I'm the oldest of 7 (2 sisters and 4 brothers - yes, parents got a divorce/dad remarried).

2. I'm the oldest grandchild on my father's side of the family (there are over 40 grandchildren at last count - Grandparents were busy and had 12 kids)

3. I was born and raised in Los Angeles, California. (See I'm a L.A. Woman)

4. I have never been married or been in a long term relationship. (I don't feel bad about it, but hoping someday)

5. I am the CRAZY Aunt. (I dance, play and joke around)

6. I am a Fat Loss Survivor. (It means what you think, I have lost weight)

7. My Best Friend is a BOY. (When we met, I was 18 years old and he was 19 years old)

8. I love to read romance novels - you know Harlequin Romance. (I was 12 when I read my first one)

9. I always wanted to experience being a blonde so I dyed my hair. (A very painful mistake)

10. My maternal grandmother is rumored to have been Jewish. (She was raised Catholic)

11. I speak Spanish. But sometimes if you ask me to translate, I can't do it. (Weird huh)

12. The only country I have traveled outside of the United States is Mexico. (Will be changing that soon)

13. I love dipping wonder bread in cherry flavored kool aid. (I haven't done it in years)

14. I google everything that I don't know. (Knowledge is Power - not kidding)

15. I trip and fall down all the time. (I'm very clumsy)

16. When I'm super busy and thoughts are running through my head, I actually talk out loud to myself. (It keeps me focused)

17. I pretty much like any food. (not kidding)

18. I have a hard time finding hats to wear. (I have a biggo head)

19. I can't draw. ( I cried as a child, wishing to be the next Picasso)

20. I have had one fight. (I punched a boy in the eye, in the fifth grade)

21. I take 3 hour naps. (Smart people take naps- not kidding)

22. I can't parallel park or reverse that well. (I have been known to jump of the car and have my passenger park the car)

23. I'm addicted to magazines. (Seriously, I can't throw them away, can't tear pages out,... yes, I have issues)

24. When I am at a decent weight, people say I look like Elizabeth Shue. When I am overweight, people say I look like Monica Lewinsky. (People please)

25. And, finally, I have never seen a true snow fall, let alone snow storm or driven in snow. (Weird huh)

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Remembering to Appreciate Life

When I think life is hard, I think about this remarkable woman. Her name, Irma Lepe, otherwise know as Tia Irma.
And conversations with Tia Irma, also, reminds me of reading a history textbook in high school, her head full of knowledge. I always wish Col. Reynolds (my own personal war hero) and Tia Irma would met, I'm sure that they would talk for days about history.
Tia Irma had many tragedies and triumphs in her life.
Here are a few:
Tia Irma lost both her mother and sister in a car accident in her early 20's, she was the only survivor.
Tia Irma was a teacher and a school administrator in her mid 20's. In fact, she became a true professional in her field of education before she got married and in Mexico that is huge.
Tia Irma had emergency, life saving surgery in her late 20's.
And most important to her, she became a wife to Javier Lepe (Tio Javier) in her early 30's (that was old in Mexican standards). She and Tio Javier were married for nearly 30 years. Tio Javier passed away in 2002.

Tia Irma and Tio Javier never had children, however they did see the world. Ask her about her travels, she had plenty of stories to tell. In fact, I asked if saw Vladimir Lenin's embalmed body while she was in Russia, she did. I thought, wow, how lucky to see that. I believe the only countries that Tia Irma and Tio Javier didn't travel to were Australia, New Zealand, and Fiji.

When I decided to accompany my good friend, Diane, to Vera Cruz, Mexico. I had no idea what a lovely, delightful woman she would be. She was generous with her time and home. Tia Irma showed us the beauty and the rich history that is Mexico, information that you don't hear about or see on T.V. She was the ultimate tour guide. She's the only person I know that had visited every single state in Mexico. She's one person that is up to do anything and she's in her 60's. She's a free spirit and so funny! In Tia Irma's little, red car, Diane, Tia Irma and myself were off to sight see. I especially loved Vera Cruz's oldest coffee house (El Grand Café de la Parroquia). It was the best!!! Rain or shine, we all were in the coffee house every single night, drinking our "lechero" (their version of a latte, but better)!

I'm so blessed to have known this remarkable woman. Tia Irma lost her battle with cancer on November 13th, 2007 in Vera Cruz, Mexico. She passed away quietly in her beloved house, the one she once shared with the love of her life (Tio Javier).

Tia Irma had many tragedies in her life, but that didn't stop her from living life to the fullest. Tia Irma appreciated everything she had, this included her relationships with friends and family. She's an example of what life gives you when you give to life. Tia Irma enriched my life in many ways for this I THANK HER!!!

And remember, "It's about living life with integrity, being honest with people that come across "your" path. Ask "yourself" these hard questions at the end of every day, 'Did you live life with integrity today? Did you move closer to your dreams and goals? Did you say 'I love you' to the ones you love? Did you smile a lot, did you laugh a lot? Did you meet someone new along the way? If the answer is yes, then that's a good day. And that's what I believe life is all about."
— 1985 hijacking victim Jackie Pflug

I hope her story inspires you to remember to appreciate life.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year - It's Time For Change!

Oprah says, "Cheers to a new year and another chance for us to get it right.” The thing is we should be changing. We should always be moving forward. We should never be the same person year after year. Change is awesome. I was once so afraid of change that my world literally stopped. I never achieved my goals, because I was afraid to fail. I soon realized that true failure is NOT trying at all. By embracing change, I have developed a sense of ownership to my life. This year I'm super determined to continue to work on myself.

I have goals that I need to work on (I will share my goals at a later post). It's all about personal achievement and satisfaction. At the end of the day, I'm the only person I need to answer to.

Happy New Year, let's rock 2009!