The 6 Mom Types You Might Know & Love #PutYourHeartToPaper

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Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Hallmark. All thoughts, tears, laughter and warm happy thoughts are purely my own. Mother's Day has not gotten any easier as the years have moved on. I think back to that first Mother's Day of mine. It was...not good. Mami had been newly diagnosed and at home, trouble was brewing. I cried that day for a lot of different reasons but mainly because I felt deep down in my soul that this would be the last of these holidays with her.

I gave her a card from me and a card from the Frog Princess. Hallmark. Always Hallmark. The wording always seems to capture the feelings in my heart. And without having to work too hard at digging from deep down, I can easily put my heart to paper with their help.

Fast forward to today. It is difficult for me to send cards during this time. I still love cards though! I hoard collect them. I treasure them. In the same way that I treasure the women in my life. This year, I'm letting Hallmark soothe my soul and selecting just the right card for them. I have many different Mamis in my life and thankfully, Hallmark as a card for each and every one of them.6 Mom Types You Might Know & Love

Here are 6 types of women currently in my life.

The "I knew you before your boobs really came in" Mami

Hallmark helps us put your heart to paper with awesomeness like this!You've been through thick and thin with this one. You've known each other for half of your life or more. This is the chick you call when it gets rough. The one that remembers that one time 15 years ago when something similar happened. This Mami knows every inch of you in a way others never will. She's your superhero for so many reasons but mainly because she loves you unconditionally. In my life, this is Robiaun.

The "We have to stay best friends because you know too much about me" Mami

Good moms and batter! Hallmark helps us put your heart to paper with awesomeness like this!

She'll help you hide the body. She texts you randomly in the middle of the night because she's awake and she can. You want to beat her sometimes because she doesn't stay in touch the way you hope. But she knows too much about you. And thankfully, you know too much about her. Her humor and love has carried you through some things. And now you two have kids and can add some more adventures to your life. Sybil fills this role for me.

The "We are family but most importantly we are friends" Mami

Hallmark helps us put your heart to paper with awesomeness like this!

A member of your family (by blood or relation), this woman has gotten to know you fairly recently. You love her to pieces and hold her heart in a way that no one else is allowed to. You see all the wonderfulness in her spirit and surprising her and making her laugh is kind of your hobby. You know this woman in my life as Yery.

The "I just met her but dammit, we go together" Mami

Cards for moms-to-be on Mother's Day because guess what? They're already Mamis!

You might have just met her but you have a deep need to care for this one. Also, she's not a Mami yet in the "ohmaigaah I haven't gotten any sleep in 7 days". She's still in the "is this ligament supposed to hurt all night?" phase of Mamihood. This Mami needs a reminder of the awesomeness that's to come. Stacey has garnered this title (and look for her in the 'hood soon!).

The "We've gotten close thank to our kids" Mami

Amor de Madre. Loving the Spanish language cards. This one becomes a piece of art for your wall!

Your kids know each other and hallelujah! You two get along splendidly. You are like minded and in similar phases of life. This woman holds it down for you and you for her. You watch each other's kids, you go out for drinks, you worry about the same things and together, you solve the problems of the world. Well, at least the problems of your kids. Jess and I go together for this reason.

The "Hallmark still makes the perfect card for you" Mami

Tu Amor Es Unico. Me encanta esta tarjeta y me recuerda de Mami.

This woman taught you everything you know about being a Mami. She rocked Mamihood in a way that you can only hope that you do some day. This woman gave you strength, courage, wisdom and faith. Sometimes, it takes 3 Hallmark cards to cover all of the things that you feel. And whether she's still on this Earth or not, every year, you have the need to put your heart to paper for her. Do I have to tell you who fills these shoes for me?

Estas palabras me caen perfectamente.

As a writer, putting my heart to paper is something that I tend to do anyway. But the idea of helping you do the same is the reason I wrote this post today.

Will you be putting your heart to paper this Mother's Day? Here's a little something to inspire you (grab a hanky!). I watched all of these in one sitting. It was beautiful!

For more beautemous moments, check out Hallmark on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram (this last one is my new addiction).

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7 Must Have's for Mami's Makeup Bag

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[box type="shadow" ]Disclosure: I received samples of these products.[/box] Do you have a mother's day gift yet? No worries if you don't. I'm thinking a little gift basket or small bag with some good ol' fashion cosmetics might do the trick for ya.

When I don't want to have makeup but want makeup (if you're not a girl, you might not understand that statement so, just roll with me), I dig the following products. I have them in my bag and feel safe knowing that I have a small arsenal at the ready. I think Mamis everywhere would appreciate this.

The Eyes Have It

The first thing your Mami needs is some Eyes by To Go Spa. You've probably seen me on Instagram with these bad boys on (the kid likes to wear them too). It's like a little spa day for those bags she's been carrying around. If your Mami is anything like me, she'll slap these on and then get so chillax she'll fall asleep. Yes and yes, my friends! With Green Tea and Pomegranate added to their selection, all I can say is take one and pass it down! ($25 for 6 treatments)

 

HS Brightening Eye PerfectorI first heard about Neutrogena's Healthy Skin Brightening Eye Perfector from Yanira and I was all "I gotta have it!". I like to use this even when I'm not wearing full-on make up because it really does what it says: brightens my eyes. And really, that's what we all need!  ($11.99)

 

 

I dig the Crease Proof Eye Shadow because it gives you a little pop all on its own or you can layer it with other shadows for a more dramatic effect. ($8.49)

Healthy Volume Mascara is good on the go. You get great lashes in no time and the olive nourishes your lashes while you look fabu. ($7.49)

Urban Decay's summer collection is out and about. I am a fan of black and thus find myself slightly drawn to Ink for Eyes. Not being fantastic at applying the eyeliner, this marker-like, felt-tip waterproof liquid eyeliner glides on smooth for me and makes me look like I actually know what I'm doing. ($20.00)

The Skin She's In

Though I use the skin clearing formula, I think that Neutrogena's  Healthy Skin Liquid Makeup is also a good option. Your color selection might be slightly limited based on your shade though. ($12.49)

Read My LipsMoistureSmooth Color Stick Pic 2

After realizing I had little (to no) lipsticks, I have been slightly intrigued by making sure I have color on my smoochers. Neutrogena's MoistureSmooth Color Stick works well and lives up to its name, Be sure to get it in Sweet Watermelon because that's my fave. ($8.49)

It's In the Bag

All you have to do now is wrap it all up in a nice little makeup bag and voila! You are done, my friend. I am partial to this Vera Bradley small cosmetic bag* but they have all kinds to choose from. Amazon can get it to you buy tomorrow if you have Prime (and why wouldn't you?).

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You can thank me later.

Disclosure: I received the cosmetics to review and liked them enough to put them in this post. The cosmetic bag link is an Amazon affiliate link for yours truly.

Broken On Mother's Day

One day shouldn't mean so much no matter how much society wants it to. It shouldn't. At least not for me.

Broken Heart

My first mother's day was disastrous and I secretly feel set the tone for the rest of my life. I was preoccupied with my mother's illness having been diagnosed and operated on just weeks prior. My relationship was falling apart and I had no one that I could share some of my fears with. When I did voice them, they were brushed away and I was left on my own on a day that I had thought would be a celebration of this new life that brought me so much joy.

That day was pretty unbelievable. I was full of sorrow and though I tried to enjoy what would be my last mother's day with my Mami, it was hard to see past the outcome of all the situations to truly enjoy it. No one was talking about the cancer ravaging my mother's body. About the radiation. About what was to come.

Dealing with the realization that there were about to be 2 major losses in my life was not easy. This week as I've dealt with having to meet my father's new wife, my own grief that resurfaces during holidays and the bubbling up of some deep realizations as to my relationships both big and small, the emotions of that day have inevitably peeked around the corner of the past.

I have tried to be semi-normal this week (normal has never really been my thing). I have attempted to go about business as usual while on an emotional rollercoaster that rivals any that could be found in Six Flags.

But the truth is that I am heartbroken. I am sad and more importantly, I'm not necessarily in the mood to be what is expected of me. I am tired of attempting to behave as the societal norm would like because ultimately that does me no good.

The Sili in the mirror is raw and has just had a tablespoon of salt sprinkled in for good measure. Though I have schoolwork to handle and follow ups to perform, I want nothing more that to crawl under the covers, get hugs and kisses from my girl and let the day run itself out.

I am sure I will return to normal in a couple of days but for now, I am in my shell and only true love and true loyalty are being allowed in. Tomorrow I will wake up and find the blessings and the beauty of the day because, though I am in this state, I never fail to acknowledge all of the good that is in my life and all of the good that is sure to come.

But for right now, I am the first to admit that I am broken and currently searching for some human-sized glue stick...

A Mother's Wishlist

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I am filled with shame and disappointment right now. At myself. At the person I have become. When did it happen, exactly? Was it while I was potty training? Or maybe it was all the nursing I did? Is this payback for that? MothersDay_Wishlist

I really don't know how to explain it. But this Mother's Day, I have something on my wishlist that I never thought I'd ask for...

That's a steam mop, y'all! A. STEAM. MOP. Who asks for that?! A MAMI, THAT'S WHO?! It wasn't until I uttered the words (with excitement, mind you): I want a steam mop! That I realized I was a mami.

Next thing you'll know I'll be dropping the kid off in rollers and a housecoat (PS: where does one buy housecoats?).

But Seriously, I Have Good Taste

I have other things on my list that I think make me cool. Certainly that BOMB-A yellow couch from IKEA tops my list. But that's totally a high end item and I'd get that only if I had a sugar daddy or if I'd manage to stop all this "trying to have my own business" craziness and continue my trophy wife job search. Here's my (kinda unfinished) wishlist:

  • Steam mop - I need this because as you know, my nose is very sensitive and sometimes Chico has accidents that I have to go on a search & rescue mission to find. The steam mop would make my OCD feel better when I clean. Also, it will prevent me from passing out every time I go on a sniffing expedition (how come dogs don't pass out when THEY go on sniffing missions?)
  • IKEA couch - it's yellow, it's trendy and modern and it BELONGS in my office. Also, here's a more detailed list of office things I need. By no means is it done but, I figure you guys can get creative with it
  • Wireless router - because the homebase needs to be upgraded lest I drop my signal in the middle of the night
  • A DSLR camera - because my brother told me I had to step up my camera game. No idea which one I'm going to get. If you'd like to pick this up for me, I'll let you decide what you think is best
  • Junot Diaz's latest book for when I have time to read (which is never)
  • Stamps - Yes, I'm totally asking for stamps. Don't judge! I'm in need of around 600 stamps to complete my mailer
  • As a subset of stamps: lickers - I need someone to lick all these remaining envelopes closed!

I have other secret wishes. Like a massage. Maybe a spa day over at the Lake Buena Vista Resort. Time at the beach. All my bills paid for 6 months. And a Ford Escape (did I take it too far with that one?).

I'm up and down this Mother's Day as I suspect I'll be for a long time to come. With ridiculous emotional rollercoaster rides on top of the whole grief thing I'm supposed to pencil in to my calendar, I don't know what I will feel like tomorrow or Sunday. And thus my wishlist changes and I go from attempting to be funny with this crazy list to wanting nothing but to pull the covers over my head Sunday morning and having pizza delivered under there.

Small steps, right? That's what I keep telling myself. I think I'll keep trying to come up with ridiculous items to add to my wishlist. Keep it light, is what I say! Till the heaviness gets to be too much to bear. And then? Well, call on a friend, of course!

Is Mother's Day difficult for you? If so, how do you help yourself along?

Mami Moments: On Sorrow and Smiles

I'm taking a study break that I can't afford.  Truth of the matter is, I'd rather go curl up in bed and pull the covers over my head. The sinking/sick feeling started on Tuesday. I thought I was coming down with something until I remembered the counselor's words in my head: don't commit to anything the week before and the week after any major holidays, because you won't know how you'll be feeling and that low wave will hit you again.

She was right.  Except this year, I'm in school.  And I have my final project's outline due by Sunday night and unfortunately, I can't call in sorrowful. Also, I am trying my best to finish all of my work by tomorrow so that I don't have to work this weekend.

Mother's Day is one of those days where I'm supposed to pretend like it's the bestest thing ever.  I have a confession.  This will be my 3rd one and the 2 previous left such disappointment in my heart that I don't really care to celebrate it. Ever.

I allowed myself to breakdown in the shower today.  Thinking about the last good day I had with mami.  Sitting outside that last Saturday, enjoying the beautiful day. I remember my first and last mother's day with her. I knew it would be my last, somewhere in the depths of my soul. The call about the cancer spreading came shortly thereafter.

I want to pick out cards to send to family and friends but, can't really make myself go down those isles.  It's just another day to me.  But heavier because there's an expectation of sorts from society.

In my heart, every day is mother's day. I never needed one day to show mami how much I loved her. The best was sneaking out under the pretense of shopping and having lunch somewhere then pretending we didn't eat when we got home so dad wouldn't get mad since he'd been home cooking.  It was walking around the mall holding hands and giggling.  Not this one day of societal obligations.

I have no plans for Sunday. And honestly, after the last two years, I don't really want any. I don't want to get my hopes up that there will be some sort of celebration that will make me, momentarily, forget how alone I feel without my mom. That there's some magic potion to erase the hurt that's so tied to this day.  I don't want to remember the last two years where those days left me emotionally exhausted partly because of the pretending for everyone else's sake.

I want to do one craft with the frog princess so that I can have a keepsake of her at this age. I think I have a kit for handprints. I want something I can tuck away though it doesn't necessarily have to be on Sunday. Something of hers during this time before she thinks I'm overbearing and that I'm ruining her life.  I may release balloons this year again but, I'll gauge how I'm feeling on Sunday.

I should say that I don't feel any less joyful about life, any less blessed or any less faithful.  This might not make sense to you and part of me hopes that it does not because then it means that you have not yet had to experience a loss in your life. I still feel like the luckiest mami in the world with the bestest frog princess to ever walk the earth. And I am doubly blessed to have had a mother who gave me enough love to last me until the end of my time on this earth and not hers. I still smile when I think of her jokes or when my girl does something just like mami used to.

This is just one of those moments that I have to ride out knowing I'll come out just fine on the other end.

Ok, back to work I go.  After all, time stops for no mami.

Smiles and Sorrow

What a tough week it's been.I'm not even sure I know how I'm going to blog about this. Part of me keeps thinking that I need to stop writing about this because this blog was supposed to be happy and funny and all kinds of other things. But the truth is, I feel like this needs to be said. It's not always happy, it's not always fluffy but it's real.There have been a lot of ups and downs these last few weeks. The biggest ones have surrounded mami. The three month anniversary of her passing was last Monday. It is so weird to me because 3 months doesn't seem like long. And yet I feel like it was a lifetime ago that I held her hand and watched her take her last breath. I am still struck by the "damn! She's really gone!" feeling at times. I don't necessarily have words to describe what that looks like at the moment. Other than the deep sense of loss that one cannot describe.

I think people expect me to just stop thinking about it, to be able to systematically turn this "thing" off so that I can return to my regularly scheduled program when in fact, all of the programs on the television have been cancelled. It's just not possible. I wonder if it would be best to retreat. To smile outwardly and when people ask me how I am doing, reply in the way that they'd prefer that I replied: Great! But those that know me know that's not me. So, If you are looking to figure out how to "deal" with me, I guess understand that it's only been 3 months and be patient. I'm still me and I am still fun and loving and happy. But not always.

It's occurred to me three paragraphs into this thing that this is the beginnings of what the grief counselor suggested I write: a grief letter. I'll stop here and get back to that part later because I honestly don't think I'm prepared to write that yet. Back to yesterday.

I had plans to go to church. But the frog princess woke up @ 2:30 a.m. She was up for an hour. Some part of me feels as if she woke to soothe me. I've realized lately how connected she is to my emotions. Like her mami, she is a comforter. This makes me love her even more (as if that's possible). That threw the morning schedule off a bit as she slept until 7 and by the time we got out of bed (because we were there for another hour as I tried to sneak in a series of 10 minute naps as I distracted her with games and books). Breakfast had been pushed back and by the time I looked up, there was no way I could get to church on time. It didn't help that I slipped back into bed and cried big fat tears. The Man was there to offer up a shoulder to cry on. And he took care of breakfast while I took a 15 minute breakdown moment. I feel as if I woke up with tears. When I was filling the tub to give the baby a bath, it occurred to me that mami gave her her first bath in that tub and I just broke down. We reset the day but it was okay. I had come to terms with the fact that things weren't going to go according to plan.

After a long frog princess nap, we packed it up and drove to the Publix to get balloons. There, a man with kind eyes filled my balloons quietly. He looked right through me and it was an odd feeling standing there waiting for my balloons that were going to heaven. I asked if I could put my notes in the balloons before he filled them and he said he'd try. He didn't ask what it was about. Just said it was a creative idea. Something made me feel as if he somehow could see my sorrow through the smile I gave him every time he looked up from his task. His name was Christian and the symbolism wasn't lost on me. We drove to the cemetery with 2 extra balloons that would stay on the ground. One for mami and one for abuela.

As we were making our way to the gravesites, The Man asked if the frog princess was going to keep a balloon. My first thought was no. Then as if she was standing next to me, I remembered that mami would never have anything and not share it with her. So, I resigned myself that one of those balloons would stay on the ground as a gift from her mama on this special day. It took The Man a while to untangle the balloons. Once he did, I tried to find a position where I would be able to let them go and not get caught up on a tree. After some deliberation, I let them go. It's funny because I didn't want to let them go though I knew I had to. I was reminded of the process of letting her go all over again. There was apprehension, sadness, questions as to what would happen next.

Just as before, I felt joy when I released them. A happiness that bubbles up in your heart and flourishes in your throat. It might not have a voice but it delights you nonetheless. My sorrow lifted with the balloons. Not all of it but, enough to let me appreciate the blue sky above, the peace that was growing within me and the fact that this was just another day for which I had to be grateful for.

I am sure mami got her delivery in heaven. I felt her smiling down at me with a mischievous grin that makes me wonder what it is that she finds so funny. Mami couldn't really keep good secrets from me so, I'm sure I'll hear what it is soon enough as I asked her to let me know when she got the balloons in heaven. Mami, I'm waiting...

Check out the video of the release: Balloons to Heaven

Making the Best With the Cards I've Been Dealt

Coming up next week: my second mother's day as a mami. My first mother's day without my own. Everything up in the air.  I hold on fast to my faith.  Like a jumper holding on to the parachute's cable. Today, I cried during my prayers with the frog princess.  Lying down on her tummy with me lying next to her, she smiled and threw her arm over me. It's funny but, lately, she is the only one that is able to comfort me with the simplest act of offering up a hug.  Or caressing my face (this one usually makes me cry).  I prayed for sustenance. I prayed for strength and comfort.  Not 5 minutes later, I get a call from one of my prayer warriors letting me know it was in their heart to call and check on me. Funny how things work out sometimes. Two weeks ago, the frog princess's earring fell out of her ear. I found it in the crib but couldn't find the screw back. The last time her earring fell off I found it on the carpet by the bed so I looked there first.  I looked everywhere.  I asked mom to help me find it.  I popped one of my little rubber backs on her earring (which made me realize I don't have a lot of earrings with the regular backs on them) and figured I'd ask the doctor for a screw back next time the baby had an appointment. Who has time to go to the mall to one of the kiosks that pierce ears to ask for one of those thingies, right?  Two nights ago, while playing in the bed before her bedtime, I reach under  the pillow to move it and my fingers graze metal. I instantly know what it is before I pull it out.  The back of the earring.  I just smiled.

I've been staring at pictures of mom lately.  Willing words into my mind in her tone of voice.  Though I already know what she would be saying at this time. Because I had fragments of conversations that, when put together at this very moment tell me exactly what needs to be done and exactly what she thought.

I am feeling very lonely these days. I realized that I miss the companionship that my mami provided me. Miss the not needing to explain myself for her to know where I'm coming from.  Lately, I've had conversations with people that hold different parts of my past. It is comforting to be able to reach back to someone that truly feels your heartbeat.  I love talking to them because in some part, they reflect back the same things that mom did.  People that truly love me look past my deficiencies because they are outweighed by my awesomeness (my sister's words, not mine).

Mamis know the intent in your heart.  They know that though the road to hell is paved with good intentions, you can always divert from that path.  I suspect that this maminess is what drew people to her.  Mami always saw the intent of a person.  This allowed her to freely love no matter what actions someone took against her or anyone else.  Not to say she didn't get pissed off.  Not that she would be willing to sacrifice herself for the greater good if someone was not concerned with her own well being. But because she used her mami radar to look into someone's heart, she somehow always knew someone's intent.

I'm learning some of her tricks as I travel down my own life.  I think I know why she and my grandma were never bothered by some things.  One reason was that they were acutely aware of what matters in life.  The second, they were able to look at a person or situation and by knowing the intent of that heart, they were able to put actions behind them and simply understand that they needed to move forward in a different direction. With forgiveness in their own heart which multiplied their blessings (and by extension, my own) and allowed them to be free of the cloud of despair that we sometimes get caught under when trying to dissect a person's motivation behind bad decisions.

She is teaching me so much.  It is difficult to believe she is not here.  Next week, I plan on honoring mami in some way.  It will be quiet and unassuming.  It will be humble.  It will be true.  From heaven, she will see my intent shining out from my being.  I pray she'll see in me all the things that she reflected herself.  The forgiveness of others, the determination, the strength.  The refusal to be moved when certain things are at stake.

It's the best I can do with the cards I've been dealt.