Category: Shopping

Memories: Old and New

A new school year started this week for the girls and Eenan (well, a new semester for Eenan)! Jaylen, Jorgie, Justin and Julien started school since last week.

It was a short week for them, though, considering that we were in the possible path of Hurricane Harvey, so they cancelled school on Friday.

Jaylen was thinking of getting out of football this year, but he changed his mind. His coach wanted him to get back in. His workload is just overwhelming, and he’ll be getting home at 8pm-9pm after practice–not to mention, games–but he’s pretty good at managing his time and level of responsibility.

He has projects galore with Early College, and called me last week, around Wednesday, to ask for some anecdotes about him when he was little that I could remember. I thought, ‘I got you Fam’ and reminded him that most of his life is documented on this very website πŸ˜† . He said, “My friends can never find out about this website…I must clear my history and everything, just in case.” πŸ˜†

I remember when Eenan realized I’d written about most of their lives and somewhat embarrassing experiences (that were cute to me–not so much to teenage them πŸ˜† ). He was in 9th or 10th grade, I think, and he told me his friend did a search for him and found tons of photos of him as a little kid. I never knew what to expect as they grew up–if they’d be okay with it or not, but I don’t think they mind that their lives have been documented this way. (We’ll see later on when my little divas find out πŸ˜† !)

Since our evening event at work was cancelled, also due to the possible hurricane, I picked my kiddos up right after work and of course, it’s always an adventure with them πŸ˜€ . Our ride home was spent listening to Jaylen read a few blog posts I wrote about him and Eenan and the girls were all giggles. First was one where he was in 1st or 2nd grade and very proudly told me he had a girlfriend he met in the cafeteria πŸ˜† . As Jaylen is reading, Eenan says, “My God, you’re so descriptive!” (That made me beam a little πŸ˜€ !)

The other story was the actual post about the time that Kohl’s had their grand opening and he and Eenan were fighting and causing a ruckus and when I finally decided it was time to go, Jaylen went limp as I was holding his hand and started screaming, “She’s hurting me, she’s hurting me!” as we walked past the cash registers . See, always an adventure LOL. The girls had a kick listening to the stories.

I woke up Saturday morning and went for a walk at the Ducky Park. Finally!!

It’d been several weeks since I got out there. It was such a fresh, wonderful morning, I couldn’t miss it. They keep saying we “dodged a bullet” on the news with Hurricane Harvey. All the devastation in Houston, Rockport, Victoria, etc. It could have been us πŸ™ .

I got home, made breakfast for myself, showered and got ready to go to my co-worker, Anabel’s, baby shower. Then I was kicking myself in the ass because I didn’t have time to blow-dry and straighten my hair, and I still needed to iron my dress and buy a card. I’m all over the place πŸ™„ .

I couldn’t find anything to wear!! I hadn’t fit into the black/white dress I wore since…2013? Probably the last time I was eating Keto. This time, it was kind of baggy–but I still wish I could fit into dresses with a flat stomach. I know, I know, I’m being ridiculous πŸ™„ . This mom bod will get there, eventually!

I went to visit Gramma afterwards, then I bought the girls their mandatory headphones for school at 5 Below and finished their school supply shopping. Can you believe I couldn’t find freaking Germ-x??

Anyway. I’m pretty sure I did some grocery shopping, too, and got home to make some chili, per Emily’s request (beanless for Jorge and me). The Mayweather/McGreggor fight was that night (so disappointing! Dammit, McGreggor!) and Jorge made me an awesome Ketofied drink!

Sunday was spent doing laundry, cleaning and cooking–so thrilling. Although Eenan didn’t want to, I took him out to drive. He drove me to and from HEB, and to a PokeStop at the park πŸ˜† . He did REALLY GOOD this time!!

Then it was time to drop the boys off, since I wouldn’t be able to clone myself and drop Eenan off at the University at 7:30pm, Jaylen off at the Early College at 8:30am and the girls back at the elementary at 7:30am. All are about 30-45 minutes apart. So I sucked it up and dropped the boys off at their dad’s Sunday evening πŸ™ . Makes me sad that I lose time with them, but it’s not fair to them to wake up at the crack of dawn when they don’t have to be at school for hours.

I don’t even remember how we started talking about it on the way to their dad’s, but we somehow got into drama from the divorce. They had lots of snippets of memories and wanted to piece together timelines. So we did. It made me emotional and angry all over again, especially since this month marks 7 years since all the high-drama went down. I made sure to let them know I love them all and couldn’t live without them. Alaethia was a bit emotional on the way back home, so I let Emily into the house when we got here and spoke to Alaethia about it. I got teary and she did and she said, “Nooo, don’t cry!” and I told her that they were my life and I couldn’t imagine my life without them. Some heavy, deep shit. But we were in a hurry to eat and get their things ready for the morning so we got over it, heh.

Everyone had a great day at school!

They pick their own clothes *sigh*. I want them to be dressed up all frilly wth bows and they’re SO over that πŸ™„ .

Anyway, Emily has Alaethia’s GT teacher from when she was in 3rd grade and Alaethia has her 2nd grade teacher as her 5th grade teacher, so they’re pretty happy. PLUS, they have most of their good friends in their class, so they’re thrilled about that!

They went on the bus the first 2 days of school, but because some bus monitor separates the kids and scared Alaethia thinking Emily wasn’t on the bus, Mario picked them up today. I think he’s going to continue to? Not sure, need to ask. Emily was the only one upset about not going on the bus LOL.

Eenan still owes me a campus selfie since I couldn’t be there to take one. I could hear him roll his eyes when I asked for it by phone πŸ˜† .

Work has been busy and eventful. I actually got there at 8am for 2 days in a row! I hadn’t packed my lunch today so I was late by 20 minutes. Oopsie!

Today is my 4-month Keto-versary!! I’ve felt ravenous today, and extremely thirsty, and I don’t know why the FAK I keep getting acne again, but I feel great LOL. I posted some before and after pics on Instagram from when I started on April 30th, but I won’t post them here because–I don’t know, it’s just weird LOL. Still. I currently weigh 115, which I what I weighed back in 2012 when I was running 7 miles with Jorge. (I still can’t wrap my head around that shit! 7 miles?? Who was I??!) But now, all I do is eat bacon, eggs, iced coffee, almond bread and walk once a week and I’m back at it, woo!!

Going Keto…Again

I feel a lot better than I did my previous post. I’m almost embarrassed that I puked my heart and soul into that post and almost deleted it, but as they say: better out than in!

Anyway. I’ve focused a lot of my energy since then into things that I do have control over now, at the moment: the kids, of course, and Jorge take priority, but I’ve also started really watching what I’m eating and SOMEWHAT started exercising again. I even used some of the birthday/Mother’s Day money mom gave me to buy some cute work-out tees! (In typical Mom fashion, the rest was put towards bills πŸ™„ !)

Cute, right??

These were on clearance at Walmart, for $3.00 and $3.15! Too bad I couldn’t get any good deals on work out pants! THAT’S what I really need! πŸ˜• I have lots of size 0-2, but it’s been a while since those fit comfortably! πŸ˜†

So I started on the Keto diet again on April 30, 2017. The last time I did this “diet” was in 2013 and I lost about 12-13 lbs. and looked much better than I had in a while at the time. It was before I had my breast reduction, of course, but being on Keto was the only time I EVER in my life went down a bra size. Even when I was religiously doing P90X daily and Taekwondo 3x a week in 2010, I didn’t loose boobage. In 2013, on Keto, I went from DD to D. I was shocked! πŸ˜†

The girls started selling Girl Scout cookies early 2014…and I DID NOT ease back into eating carbs–I literally shoveled a box of cookies a day 😳 . So naturally, I gained weight AND when I went for my routine check-up on February 7, 2014, I stupidly got my labs done at 3pm…right after consuming 4 Thin Mints. Of course my cholesterol came back off the charts (394, something like that??) and I was put on a Statin STAT because of my family’s medical history. They sat me down and I got a stern talking-to about what to eat and what not to eat. I was pretty bummed.

So I’m going into this venture once again, but wary and aware of the risks. I’m still trying to figure out how much a lipid panel (to check my cholesterol levels) would be, since I already got my routine check-up done and my levels were slightly elevated then. I don’t want to end up having a stroke or heart attack for the sake of vanity!

Speaking of, other reasons I’m getting back on the Keto train–besides obviously losing weight–is 1) Jorge got back on it a few weeks ago and it’s much easier for me to come up with dinners when I’m cooking for both of us (because, let’s face it: sometimes I have to make an extra meal for my picky girls πŸ™„ ). A third meal would be ridiculous!

2) Since getting off birth control in February-ish of this year (had gotten on it again around August 2016 to help regulate my monthly visitor), my acne has been out of control, mainly on the chin area, which reflects hormones out of whack and/or stress (and I have a bad habit of touching my face, so I’m sure that doesn’t help!). So I’m hoping steering clear of sugar and carbs will help. I’ve been reading articles on Dietdoctor.com, and a piece on acne states:

…modern studies show a probable connection between high-glycemic (high-carb) diets and acne.This may be caused by the effect on growth hormones like insulin and IGF.

To improve acne, your best bet is a fairly strict low-carb diet – ideally one that is also low in dairy products.

I’m willing to try anything to clear this embarrassing problem. The only thing that makes me nervous about Keto is the amount of cheese you could possibly eat–and I’m lactose intolerant (and also, the cholesterol!)! I think being lactose intolerant is another sign my body’s giving me to lay off the sugar and give my face a break, so I’m going to try to use as little as possible, as much as I love it πŸ™ .

I’m actually much more excited about cooking than I had been in a long time. Here are a few meals I’ve made:

Bunless burger with the works!
JalapeΓ±o Chicken Casserole
Keto Krepes With Low Sugar Homemade Strawberry Syrup, Peppered Bacon, Sugar Free Hazelnut Coffee

You can find the recipe for those awesome Keto Krepes here.

We’ve cut our eating out a LOT, but when we have it’s been easy to make substitutions:

Grilled Chicken, Veggies and Avocado Salsa at Palenque Chicken
Bunless Salmon Burger with Aoli and Broccolini at House.Wine & Bistro

I’ve also lost 3 lbs.! Just weighed in this morning and it’s the little boost of motivation I needed to keep going. Now, if I could just find the time to do P90X again! Or at least the 40 minutes I need to get to the park to run! Emily has her GT Project due and we need to finish it TODAY.
[edited to add:] Emily finished her project at school and all I had to help her with was flash cards for questions and finding her prizes to give her classmates as she quizzes them, so we got to go walking/running![/edit]

Changing gears: my poor Gramma hasn’t been doing too well πŸ™ . She was in the hospital on Sunday due to possible signs of suffering a mini-stroke. Ugh. Long story. Let’s just say I had to BITCH and threaten a lawsuit in order to get those idiots at the nursing home to move their asses and get her to the hospital! She may have Bells Palsy, which they will correct with medication but only to a certain extent πŸ™ . Mom and I waited in the lobby while Aunt Nora stayed with Gramma and we got hungry, so we went to the gift shop. There was a beautiful, almost heavenly glow coming from the snack area. There were muffins, and cookies, and chips, oh my!! It took all my willpower to only purchase these:

I shared the almonds and pickle with Mom and I was proud of myself for sticking with it. Mom, on the other hand, got Fritos -_-.

Gramma is doing as well as possible. I feel so bad that she’s in any discomfort.

I’ve been posting less on my regular social media and focusing a lot of attention on my food and health Instagram account. If you’d like to see meal ideas or just what I’m up to, the link is: @yaya_goes_keto (formerly, @yayastartsover). I’ve documented most of my ups/downs/tries/fails . When I started up again in June 2016 after all the complications I had with the breast reduction from February 2016-June 2016, I was tracking on MyFitnessPal and working out (P90X). I went from 123 lbs. to 119 lbs., but that was quickly short-lived thanks to the last complication I had, and then I’m pretty sure I had some weird trauma/mental block that was keeping me from working out since it seemed like every time I got into a routine, I ended up at the doctor’s office again. But I hope I’m successful this time and can keep up with my “diet” (or Way of Eating) and workouts, even though I know I won’t be able to workout every day. I have to admit, eating this way has been pretty easy so far!

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 πŸ™‚ .

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 πŸ™‚ .

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 πŸ˜† !
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 πŸ™ . 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!” πŸ˜† 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 πŸ™ . 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?!