Thanksgiving Fest 2016

We truly have a lot to be thankful for this year. I know it’s been a disastrous year for many of our beloved famous figures–but personally, it felt like an easier year than last year, for some reason, and I’m thankful for our health and being together.

I’m also thankful that on November 17th, I got to finally meet Tia Tere and her daughter, my cousin, Anna. Tia Tere is the aunt everyone would say I resembled in her younger years 🙂 .

We all met at Velma’s house. We shared anecdotes and family history (Lipan Apache was confirmed in Velma’s Ancestry.com genealogy! I want to do mine!) and when I told everyone about trying to reach out to my Grandfather back-in-the-day I learned that he was actually a family friend (Velma’s mom and dad’s compadre)! So that was interesting to say the least. We had a wonderful time, laughing and eating. Velma’s always such a wonderful host 🙂 .

They opened the Performing Arts Center on the 18th and we got to take a tour and hear the acoustics. It’s pretty state-of-the-art and just impressive!

November 18th is also Jorge and my “All-Together” anniversary, and to keep tradition with previous years, we had lunch together at Kumori!

Neither Jorge nor I were thrilled with that photo, so it didn’t make it onto social media 😆 !
I had to work at the Food Park the next evening at Unplugged (and had to pick kids up in between), so I didn’t get to go to the all-day mini-reunion the family was having 🙁 . Tia Tere visited Gramma. I’m so sad I wasn’t there to see it for myself. The sisters hadn’t seen each other in years!

I made myself feel a little better about not being able to meet more family by totally pigging out on these pork belly Kimchi fries from one of my favorite food trucks, Nuri Food Truck!

I learned the next day that at the mini-reunion at Gramma’s, mom decided to tell my life story (even the embarrassing and depressing parts) to my “new” relatives. Without my consent or knowledge. I couldn’t believe her. Let’s just say Linda said everyone was shifting uncomfortably and looking off into space. I asked Linda why she nor anyone stopped her and she said, “It was her time to shine!” 😆 Oh geez!!

Anyway. I showed my face at the next evening’s reunion with Aunt Nora and Linda. And apologized to my tia and cousins for having to endure my mother’s rambling on. I got to meet another cousin and her little girl, which was pretty damn cool :).

The next morning, Sunday, I hung out with my Littles. They don’t require as much attention as they used to, but they still do love to follow Mom around, even if it’s just to sit in my company. Seeing as how I also have teenagers who spend most of their time playing video games, football or asleep, I’m going to let Emily, Alaethia and Jules follow me around as long as they want. There will come a day when I’ll miss them doing so!

Jorge and I bought some pork belly from Gabriel, our friend that owns Nuri, so that I could make Jorge some kimchi fries while Nuri was on Thanksgiving break. Even though it wasn’t exactly like Nuri’s, I’ve gotta admit: it was tasty:

So, feeling as guilty as I did after consuming what’s seemingly an entire PIG the month of November (we LOVE Nuri!), Jorge and I decided to have lunch at Gumbo’s for something light. I ordered my usual: Island Salad. It’s like the most scrumptuous dessert!

Buuuuut…I also had broccoli soup in a bread bowl. Aye.

It was…as warm, delicious and comforting as it looks! My stomach wasn’t too happy with the cream (as I’ve gotten older I’ve realized I’m INCREDIBLY lactose intolerant!! Why meee?! Why cheeese??), but man, was it worth it!!

The kiddos had been with Mario that week up until Wednesday, and this year all 7 kids would be with us till 4pm, since Maggie wanted them at that time. So I picked up my babes and we had a small PokeHunting sesh since they’d just started with the new tracking system.

This was also the day John moved out (and we haven’t really seen him since) so he was missing from the Thanksgiving festivities. Dina, Briana and the kids came down, including Nick’s friend Tony. He was such a polite young man!

As soon as they arrived, we started with the preparations for the feast.

While the turkey baked, we visited Gramma.

I didn’t get a proper photo of the spread since we were cutting it close before the kids had to go 🙁 . But Alaethia said grace, and the food was delicious!

The boys tower over me!


(Jorge didn’t get into any photos!!)

The Holidays don’t usually pass without some kind of hiccup, and there was a small bit of drama but it didn’t last long, thank God.

The kiddos left with their other families around 4-5ish so the adults kind of just relaxed watching a marathon of “Forensic Files”. Jorge and I did our Christmas shopping for the kids from the couch (OMG, got SUCH good deals!) and literally just about finished shopping for the big boys that same day!

I snuck out early the next morning, by myself, to do some minimal Black Friday shopping at HEB Plus. There were a few things I absolutely couldn’t pass up for the kids, so I *had* to go. Happy to report that everyone survived! HEB Plus was pretty straightforward with their rules (they gave you a map, a circular and the rules as you arrived) and let you know they weren’t taking shit from anyone and would escort you from the store if you caused trouble.

Jorge had to work that day, and Dina went to visit her mom so Briana and I hung out with the kids and then went to the park to meet Lisa and Joyce since the kids were becoming stir-crazy. Later on we all met at Fantasy Land Skate Center. Totally made me miss the kids, but I distracted myself by helping Mia and Maddie stay on their feet.

We got home and of course I had to make the obligatory Turkey Leftovers Salad.

That salad is truly the tastiest! (Darnit. Now I want some…)

I did some grocery shopping the next morning (with my $20 coupons I got from shopping the day before!) and then we kinda lazied around till we went to the Food Park that evening. Had to take Briana to SnoBro Raspas!

Hot Cheetos and Cheese & Watermelon Raspa with Gummy Bears and Chamoy

We had actually dressed for going to the park and doing a run, but we stayed nearby and went for a walk at Archer instead. Nick and Tony played football and Mia chased fireflies. It was the sweetest!
And then we picked up Whataburger for dinner. So much for our walk!!

But that’s what it’s all about right? Having fun with your loved ones, eating, drinking and being merry?!

Mother’s Day 2015 & Our Huge Announcement

First, let me start by wishing all the mommies, grandma’s, caretakers, guardians, stepmommies, aunts, cousins, sisters, etc., a belated Happy Mother’s Day!

I had THE BEST day ever and I’m not exaggerating :D!

I started the day by rolling around lazily in bed while my love made me breakfast. Emily and Alaethia helped him, of course :). My little chefs. Jorge came to get me, walked me to the dining room with his hands clasped around my eyes and, after the boys prodded Justin awake they yelled, “Happy Mother’s Day” and I got hugs all around.

Breakfast made by my love and the girls!
Breakfast made by my love and the girls!

I’d been meaning to blog since that day but we had so much going on throughout the day and Grey’s Anatomy to catch up on (yes, I’m newly obsessed and have in turn made Jorge become obsessed!).

So after my epic breakfast, the kids and I devoured the iced Oreos and we watched Grey’s Anatomy while the kids all took turns bathing. Jorge was driving Javi somewhere, so the kids and I watched Friends while they continued to take showers. The hall bathroom is being remodeled so we’re down to 2 restrooms and 2 showers, but both showers are in the same bathroom so that doesn’t help, heh.

Jorge and I had an announcement to make to the kids, and we figured it was the perfect day. We’d announce it during dinner. I even recited a whole loving speech. I was ready!

So everyone got ready and then we piled into both cars and went to Cracker Barrel.

Playing checkers
Playing checkers

The kids skimmed the menus and everyone ordered. Jorge and I were fidgety…and figured let’s just do it, let’s tell them. So I called everyone and told them we had an announcement. Jaylen, Jorgie and Justin all yelled, “I think I know what it is!” And Justin said, “Either you’re married or you’re getting married!?” And Jorge and I looked at each other and laughed, and we said yes, that was it.

Alaethia said, “Wait, you’re not married??”

I still kinda fumbled with my words and told them they’re officially siblings and that we’d eventually have a wedding and they’d all be in it. Eenan said, “I’m not going to dance.” And I laughed, “No, you don’t have to dance, you’re just going to be up there, with us.” Then Justin told Jorge, “When did you propose?? What’s wrong with you??” And we had a good laugh. Love them all. Then they went about their business like it was the most cadual thing.

So my speech didn’t go exactly as I thought it would, heh. But I’m glad we didn’t have any rolling eyes, or sad faces, heh. I really was nervous once we were in the moment. I had no idea I’d freeze like that. Never in my life has that happened!

Jorge and I are finally, officially married :D. When I made the announcement at work, or when I tell people about it I get a “FINALLY!” right before the “Congratulations!” It really was about time. We’re already in a marriage and have raised our kids together for 4 years so we figured now was as good a time as any.

Of course I’d like an actual wedding, but it’s not anything that’s SUPER important or anything I want to stress myself with right now. We have more important things going on right now that we need to take care of first. And I’m just thrilled to officially call Jorge my HUSBAND :D.

The kiddos, and Mom!
The kiddos, and Mom!

So, to continue with our Mother’s Day, we finished up at Cracker Barrel (oh my gosh, did I glut!).

Case in point...
Case in point…

The waitress brought us our desserts and Julien randomly yells, “The whole world loves you, Mom!” Which made me get all the feels!! That just made my day!

Jorge brought Jorgie, Justin, Jules and Alaethia home with him since Aly wasn’t feeling good. She got a bad stomach ache while we were still at the restaurant.

We went to visit Gramma and took her her gifts and flowers. We talked and took photos and then we came home where we relaxed the rest of the day.

Chubby Bunny!
Chubby Bunny!

I made my announcement at work the next morning–quickly, right after my weekly update to everyone’s surprise. Everyone congratulated me and then we went out for breakfast at Denny’s (not because of my announcement LOL).

The rest of the week has been the same: work, home, cook, spend time with the kiddos…

Making cupcakes, completely on their own!
Making cupcakes, completely on their own!

…put kiddos to bed then Grey’s Anatomy. That show kills me and Jorge a little inside every day.

I took the girls to the doctor on Wednesday. Those darn colds never seem to go away! Alaethia was already starting with a throat infection.

I took the morning off work on Friday so I could take Mom for some blood work then go to the girls’ Field Day:

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…and then I had a meeting before meeting my love at Wallbanger’s with the guys for lunch.

Jorge and I didn’t have the kids this weekend, so we had a date night on Friday evening. First Zoe’s Kitchen.

Hummus Trio, my fave!
Hummus Trio, my fave!
The turkey stack.
The turkey stack.

Then a drink and dessert at Longhorn Steakhouse.

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Then Grey’s Anatomy, heh.

We were invited to Corner Bakery Cafe’s soft opening at Palm’s Crossing so I picked up my love and we met EZ, Michelle and Rosie there. Everything went smoothly and the food was delicious.

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Michelle, Rosie and I went to Michael’s to buy flowers to glue onto our cheap Walmart full-length mirrors, like we saw at Mariposa Boutique during the Cash Mob.

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(Excuse my crappy selfie-taking LOL.)

I also found a white frame on clearance and I finally got around to hanging my papel amate painting.

We went to Homegoods afterwards. It was my first time there. I wanted everything, but the big decorative stuff was still too pricey for me. I did end up getting new pot holders, dish towels, a large frame and a small globe.

I dropped the girls off, then Mom and I went to visit Gramma and went grocery shopping. I got home, paid all the bills online and then I made my love his (Vitamin) Rib Eye, as John jokingly called it.

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And then we sat down for a long, heartbreaking bingefest of Grey’s.

As for this morning, I made us some awesome breakfast sandwiches and we had some Mimosa’s.

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We’ve been lazying around waiting for laundry to be done, and we have a few errands we need to run so that’s the rest of our day. Then it’s back to the grind tomorrow!