Thursday, July 2, 2015

Maria Is Leaving Seasame Street

Hi Friends,

Maria is no longer going to be on Sesame Street. after 45 years, the actress and writer who embodied Maria is leaving. When I found out, I ran downstairs to tell my husband and I could barely get the words out because I was crying. I am surprised by how emotional I got and then I laughed at myself because I was crying and hurting over a TV character.  I cannot explain why this resonates so deeply with me. I feel like I grew up with Sesame Street. I remember watching the clock as a child, waiting for 3pm so I could turn on the TV for Sesame Street, even though many of the episodes were repeated. This was the pre-cable TV days in Trinidad and Tobago.

I still love Sesame Street and due to the magic of Netflix and DVDs, I have introduced my children to Sesame Street. I am sure my 2 year old knows her alphabet and learned to count due to Sesame Street. Sesame Street was and is always ahead of it’s time. You learn love, acceptance, friendship and so much more. Maria is a woman who is a minority, multi-lingual, owns and runs her own business where she fixes things, traditionally a male-centric occupation. She is also a wife and mother. She is an example to girls and women. I love her.

Thank you Sesame Street and thank you to Sonia Manzano for giving us Maria. Thank you for the lessons and for the memories. Muchas Gracias.


Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Mommy wars, I refuse you!

Hi friends,

I am writing this as I sit in my backyard. My son is at school and my daughter is alternating between running around and climbing into my lap to take over control of the pc. I have also just completed a marathon cooking session as the next few days will be very busy and I want to make sure we have proper meals to eat, not that the kids will care. They live on a diet of sunshine and rainbows.

I know some people will say that I am lucky that I can stay at home. I know a lot of people will also judge and make assumptions. The mommy wars are real and I have made (mostly silent) ignorant comments in my ill-informed younger days but I do feel the need to write/talk/vent and generally express how I am feeling at this particular moment. Being a stay at home mom, for the most part, puts you through the wringer emotionally and physically, for me at least. I have been ridiculously happy, depressed, worried, you name it, I probably felt it. But today, I’m feeling unsure and excited. I feel like I have a new chance at figuring out what I want to be when I grow up.

My entire life, the only thing I was sure that I wanted to be was a wife and mother but also something else too. I just don’t know what the something else is. I love that I could say at home for as long as I have. I got to have great tines with my kids, I got to volunteer at my son’s school and my daughter and I have some fun girl time. I have also had people say the dumbest thing to me. Some of them intentional and some of them unconscious (I hope). Here are some examples:

  1. “What do you do all day?” I want to tell them to switch places with me do exactly what I do, to my standards.
  2.  “You must be so bored.” Sometimes but not for long. There is always something to do. I do get lonely though.
  3. “I couldn’t do it, I need to be busy.” See #1
  4. “I need to work, I need the fulfillment.” I’m very fulfilled and I do work. Parenting is work. Also, I freelance occasionally so I do “work” outside of the home and from home too.
That is just a sample.

I think we all suffer from “the grass is always greener on the other side,” at some point. I would love to be able to take family vacations, eat out at fancy restaurants and have spa days but I need to work within my budget. I also am reminding myself all the time that life is fluid, I’m not going to be in this stage forever. 

This brings me to where I am today. I feel on the cusp of something. I am exploring a few opportunities and I do not know where I will end up but I am trying to be positive, worry less and enjoy the moment I am in. I’m getting rambly and philosophical but what I want to say is that you never truly know someone’s life situation or what they are going through and Facebook only tells part of the story. I am constantly reminding myself of this. Along with my positive qualities I am also vain, shallow and envious but that doesn’t make me a bad person. It makes me human. So I may covet your vacation or shopping trip but I am also happy that you got those and I will back off from Facebook and look at all my blessings and be happy for myself. 
This post was full of clichés but clichés stick around because they are true. Enjoy what you have!

Current view: 2 year old is taking a break to bask in sunshine and coconut breadcrumbs while playing a Dora matching game on my iPhone. Life is tough.



Sunday, April 12, 2015

Sunday morning reflection...missing Trinidad and Tobago

Hi friends,

I haven’t written in a while because I have been feeling uninspired and lazy. This morning, if finally felt like spring arrived, at least where I am. We did a little cleanup of the front yard and played outside. It felt great to have the sun on my face. It was warm enough for me to wear flip flops in the backyard. It made me happy because I feel like summer is coming. But, it also made me feel a little nostalgic. I don’t know why. Anyway, this came to me as I was watching the kids play with bubbles.

Sunday morning reflection...missing Trinidad and Tobago 

I dream of green grass under my feet
I dream of sand between my toes
I dream of the kiskadee's tweet
I dream of the scent of the ocean in my nose
I dream of a coconut in my hand
I dream of mango juice on my face
I dream of feeling the sun when I touch the land
I dream of breezes in a warmer place
I dream of a Trini Sunday lunch
I dream of a snow cone with condensed milk
I dream of chenette by the bunch
I dream of a cold tropical drink
I dream of relaxing in Store Bay
I dream of fudge and sugar cake
I dream of my kids playing all day
I dream of fry bake

I dream, I dream, I dream...

By a Trini girl at heart.



Saturday, February 28, 2015

Work In Progress: Overcoming Brattiness.

Hi friends,

There are so many clichés in life that are clichés for a reason. They are true. The ones about not truly appreciating your mom until you are a mom? True. Same goes for anything about needing your parents. Totally true.

When I was a terrible teenage, I remember the feeling of being in a contact state of flux, waiting to get to 18 to escape my parents. Well, you never escape your parents. You move out, build a life for yourself but your parents and family are part of you. And you realize you never really wanted to escape them. You just needed some space to screw up on your own.

My dad turned 65 this week and I realized that my parents are getting older. I know, I should have accepted it earlier since biology and all but I never really thought about it. As all kids do for most of their lives, I took my parents for granted and I do not express my gratitude enough.

One day, it will be my turn. It already is. My kids take it for granted that I will cook, clean and always be there for them. I want them to always feel secure that they have their parents as their safety net. Of course, this illusion will not last forever but we will hold on to it for as long as possible.
I have come to rely on my parents and in-laws so much, especially when Baby Daddy is travelling. I applaud all of you who keep it together without any help. I fully take and ask for help whenever I need it.

I still remember how horrid I was as a teenager. I mean with the emotions and the drama. Always feeling that I had it so bad, my parents were too strict, I never got to do anything etc. You know the drill. I know my day is coming and I get to experience it with a boy and a girl. I know I will marvel at how my parents did it. All I can do is say thank you to my parents. I am more aware of asking anything of them. I stopped (for the most part) expecting that they can always accommodate me. I make a conscious effort to ask if they can help babysit before making plans. I make sure to say thank you. They go out of their way to help when they can, as parents do.

I’m getting maudlin but I guess what I am trying to say is what I have realized. I need to make a conscious effort to be kind and grateful to those closest to me, my family. We make so much effort with strangers, we just need to do it more with those in our hearts. 

Very grateful for this family.