Tuesday, March 17, 2009

25 Random things about me!

1. When I coached a high school basketball team we would have our "Random Fact Time." In the middle of practice I would give the girls a break and provide random facts. We covered things from AIDS, millions of dollars the state of Texas pays to pick up trash from the side of the road every year, Native Americans, and the list goes on. 

2. Growing up I missed out on movies most Americans watched, I still have not seen E.T., Alice in Wonderland, Bambi, The Wizard of Oz, Snow White....

3. I love applying eye make-up, I noticed that when I do it I get really hyper, don't know why.

4. My parents say I cried non-stop from when I was born, until I was about 4 years old. 

5. I grew up with my parents speaking only Spanish, and my older sisters speaking only English. Mom said it took a long time before I spoke (my first words were in Spanish), then all of a sudden on our way back from Mexico she heard me speaking in full English sentences, she was surprised! 

6. I LOVE Baseball!!

7. I have a torn ACL in my left knee.

8. My "Heaven on Earth" is at the waterfalls 15 minutes down the road from my grandparents ranch in Veracruz Mexico.

9. I worked with Indigenous people and long for being among them again. I was constantly encouraged by their smiles, hard work, and joy in the midst of their hard lives.

10. I used to bite my nails and thought I would for the rest of my life, after living in Mexico and not ever wanting to put my hands in my mouth, I was able to break the habit!!

11. My front left tooth (#9) is a crown, when I was 12 my brother hit a line drive to my mouth while playing baseball and broke it. 

12. I hope to one day have the time to sit down and work on the potters wheel again, I love and miss sculpting clay. 

13. I don't drink sodas

14. I don't like the way gold looks on me.

15. I was 19 years old the first time I played in snow.

16. I hope to vacation in Spain someday. 

17. I had to go to Speech therapy when I was in 1st grade.

18. A few days before meeting Caleb I had written "My prince charming" on a want list at work, little did I know. 

19. I believe my mom is one of the best cooks on EARTH!

20. I can make 10 free throws in a row. When I'm stressed or worried nothing clears my mind like shooting free throws. 

21. I love cherry sours, but I only eat the out side candy shell, I actually hate the jelly bean inside so I spit it out. 

22. I don't have a middle name.

23. I'm currently taking a badminton class and I'm surprised I LOVE IT!

24. Growing up my dad always played the guitar and sang, I used to get tired of it, now I miss it. 

25. I envy simplicity

Thursday, March 5, 2009

My abuelita and me.

One day they'll be gone...

I had a wonderful weekend in Houston with Caleb as we celebrated Reese's 3rd birthday.  The drive back to San Antonio was one I will cherish for years to come.  The traffic was light and we were able to enjoy the scenery as we drove along.  We randomly came across a Blue Grass Music station that we enjoyed for a while.  We pulled over for gas and some snacks (awesome beef jerky made locally) in the small town of Weimer.   As I entered the restroom I noticed a tiny older lady and her younger daughter.  Abuelita (grandma in Spanish) was trying to wash her hands but she could not find the knob to turn on the water.  Her daughter chuckled as she explained to her all she needed to do was run her hands under the spout and it would turn on.  Hesitant abuelita tried and stood still as if she were processing what just happened.  As I finished washing my hands I asked where she was from.  Turns out she was from Mexico and her daughter was from Del Rio, they were on their way to Houston then onto Dallas.  With a typical shy smile Abuelita said good bye.  There was something about her that reminded me of my mother.   As the tiny woman walked away I thought to myself, one day they'll be gone, those women who like my mom worked so very hard.  It was interesting to watch as the old and the new crossed paths.  

While living in Veracruz where my mami grew up, and where some things have not changed, I pondered the difference between my mother and I.  She recalls the tears running down her face each time the mid-wife informed her that she had given birth to yet another girl (she had three total).  She did not ever want to have girls, "Life is so much harder for girls."  This was her reality being the third child born in a family of 14.  The two children before her were boys and being the oldest girl in the family she worked the land with her father and brothers in order to provide for those that continued to join the family for years to come.  Mom shares how her frustration continued to grow as every time her parents announced they were going to visit a certain lady friend of the family.  NEVER knowing her mother was pregnant, mom grew to hate this friend her parents visited almost yearly.  "Does this lady not understand that we do not need anymore kids, every time they go visit her she gives them another baby, another baby I will have to help feed, wash clothes for, raise!"  It was only after many years and many babies mom realized the lady friend was her mothers' mid-wife.  

Mom never had the education we were blessed with simply because we were born on this side of the border.  Instead of being in school she remembers sitting on the back of a donkey as her brothers pulled pineapples from the ground and tossed them in her direction.  She would catch them (ouch!) and place them in the baskets hanging on each side of the donkey.  Farming, that is what my mother remembers from her childhood.  Corn, beans, pineapples, sesame seeds, papaya, bananas, mangos, jalapenos, oranges, limes, coconuts, squash, jicama, the list could go on and on!  As she got older she developed great people skills and was one of the best sellers at the market.  While having a conversation with Dona Marina she shared with me how my mom could sell limes like no one else.  "She was always the first one to sell off everything at market and head home."

I challenge you, who are the older women around you, what stories do they have tucked away?  Have lunch with them, listen and learn.  For one day they'll be gone...