Thursday, September 24, 2015

Christianity vs Earthly Desires: My Confessions

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Four year ago I decided to change my lifestyle. I decided that it was time to grow up and focus on my family and new life as a new wife.

For you to understand me you need to know a little more about me and my dark past. Ok so is not that dark, just a little grey. You see, I've always enjoyed parties and dancing. Dancing is my passion, music is my stress reliever. If I'm home cleaning and I put on music to liven up the mood you bet that I'll end up showing my broom some moves ;) But four years ago I decided to be a follower of Christ and my old ways had to stop. And it has not been an easy journey. I've encounter many trials and tribulations along the way. And this might sound insane but if there was ever a out in my mind about God not being real, well there will never be again. The things I've witnessed and the things I've experienced have been beyond unnatural. There was definitely a higher power involved. Call me crazy but it's the truth. Maybe one day I'll share those experiences. For now though let's stay focus.

Little by little over the years I've pushed away from friends and family that were not on the same path as me. Now wait a minute, before you judge me hear me out. I did not push everyone away indefinitely, I simply stopped doing the things they were doing with them. Things that made me feel guilty like going to a dancing club Saturday night then to church on Sunday morning. The more I became involved in the church the more I pushed away. I didn't judge them, I just did not feel comfortable doing those things anymore. Many of my friends drink and smoke and dress very provocative and I was the outcast. I didn't belong and so I moved on, alone. Thankfully everyone respected my decisions and didn't judge me. We kept in touch and got together from time to time to catch up on life. Four years later and it all remains the same. I'm still moving on, alone, and my friends continue to go out dancing, drinking, casino hopping, etc. And so for many Saturday nights I sat back on my couch and allowed my earthly desires to be fulfill through my friends. It made me envious to see a group of girls go away to the city for a weekend, laughing, happy, having a good time, enjoying their 20s and here I was home alone.

Yes alone, although far from it, is how I felt when everyone was out having "fun". My kids would be watching TV or sleeping next to me, and my husband would either be out himself or sleeping through the boredom. I mean, of course I love being home with my boys but feeling left behind on what the rest of the world is doing is not the greatest feeling. It came to a point where it created problems in my marriage. My husband and I were not (and are still not) on the same spiritual journey. Is a daily struggle. He still goes out some weekends to watch a UFC fight or to hang out with the guys while I stay home alone thinking about what loser I must look like in a reality TV series jajaja. Deep down I felt alone. I had no one that shared my curent interest. It seemed like everyone was on the same page except for me. It sucked and I would take it out on my husband. "He had no business being out there with the rest of them, he was a family man now" I thought. He was putting himself in temptation's way. He was going to end up doing something he'd regret. It was all I could focus on. For years.

Then finally one night it hit me. I wasn't mad at my husband for having a life that seem more exciting than mine, I was mad at myself "for staying behind". I was allowing social media to blind me with what I thought was cool and what I was missing out on. The parties, the dancing, the drinking, the fun times with friends. But deep down I knew something wasn't right. I don't like waking up with a hangover. I don't like dropping off my kids at their grandparents so that I can go out dancing. I don't like wearing provocative clothes to call attention. I don't like feeling disrespected by man. I just wanted to have friends that share my interest, I didn't want to feel alone anymore and no one understood me.

I love being a Christian. I have met amazing people on this journey and it has brought me so much closer to others. I've found peace, and true love, and how beautiful forgiveness and God's grace can be. It has been hard staying focus and feeling alone but I wouldn't trade it.

I'm not perfect and still enjoy my glass of wine or two maybe even a Cosmo. I still listen to Spanish music and dance some bachata here and there.

I'd love to have more people on board with me but right now it seems that I'm still finding myself and I'm ok with that.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Oh Summer...

You have been a great one. The best one compared to the last 4. It was wonderful having you around and I am sad to see you go. Although Autumn is my favorite season it'll have to climb high to top you off. :)



You came around and brought new life, a precious baby girl was welcomed by my brother and his girlfriend making me once again a titi and godmother. EmiyahLee is the cutest little princess ever and I can't get enough of her. In only three months she has stolen my heart and the heart of many. He smile is priceless and I fall more in love with her every time I see her.

 

We decided to spend father's day visiting friends in NYC and celebrating with them their first child first birthday. Our boys had an amazing time and we were honored to be a part of their big and special day.

 

June 25th marked 4 years since our wedding and I am happy to report that we have survived. 4 years ago I never thought we would make it this far but boy what a gratifying journey has this love story been. My pastor once told me " Happiness is a journey" and I have to agree. It seems that over the years our happiness have increased immensily. I can't wait to se where the next four years will take us.

 

We said goodbye to June by taking a 5 day trip to Ocean City, MD. It was a wonderful time with the in-laws and my mother. You can read all about that trip here.

 

We welcomed July by celebrating our firstborn, Steven, nineth birthday. Holy Jesus, 9 years! I can't believe we have a child this old. Seriously, I simply cannot get over it. I'm not even 30 yet 8-/

 

As a late Father's Day gift, I took my FIL, Hubby, Steven, and AJ to an Iron Pigs baseball game. We got to watch the game from the porch party area loaded with tasty food. The guys had a fabulous time and I gave myself a pat on the back for a succesful (one of many) outing with this 3 generations of Perez boys. Not having my father alive to share special moments with my kids or having any granparents left on this world makes me feel as if I should cherish every moment with my FIL and use every opportunity possible to have my husband and sons spend quality time with him as well. 

 

Another trip to Ocean City, MD took place on August 1st to celebrate FIL's 60th birthday. Again it was only him and his wife with my little family, more quality time for making memories that will last a life time.

 

Many trips to Dorney Park that brought back many childhood memories for the hybby and I.

 

Trips to different parks and bike rides weren't that far behind either. I love to see my boys happy and their happiness was brought on by lots of outside time. Whether is riding bikes, going down the slide, blowing bubbles, or flying a kite, that's what being a child is all about.

 

One on one time with the hubby was well deserved after all the running around we did. Many dates were accompanied by siblings or friends. I love this man so much! I love you Hun :)

 

An engagement in mid-August made for some very happy parents-to-be. Will there be a destination wedding in the near future? I'm excited for this!

 

I paid off my car! I'm do excited to have done this :D


A weekend road trip to Baltimore, MD and Washinghton DC was the last trip we took for the summer. A post on that will be coming soon :)

 

And now that you are leaving dear summer, you leave us a handsome prince who became the 4th grandson in the hubby's side of the family. Although we love him very very much we are all itching for that little princess who will become the first granddaughter/daughter. I foresee a baby boom happening very soon in this family. Who will be the lucky parents of this highly expected baby girl?

 

xoxo,

Pamela 

Saturday, September 19, 2015

OCMD 2015 Part 2: Day 1

Vacationing with FIL is always so much fun. I say this because we get the best of two worlds. For starter, we get to enjoy the vacation by only having to deal with our two boys and second because he likes to eat (like me) which means lots of eating out and we go sightseeing a lot. At least that's always the case when we travel anywhere with him.

This year the husband thought that his dad would enjoy a trip to Ocean City, Maryland for his birthday and he was right. After he asked him how he felt about it he booked a two night stay in a double bed room at the Francis Scott Key Resort, our favorite place to stay in OC. This is how our weekend went. 

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Our alarm went off at 4am. The previous days were very busy and we didn't finish packing for our beach trip so the hubby and I divided tasks. He finished packing the things he needed and got himself and the boys ready while I got myself ready and packed everything else I thought the boys and I would need. One thing I have to admit about having boys is that they are the easiest to pack for when it comes to vacationing. Of course that depending on the age range it does get a bit challenging but at this age (2.5 and 9) and for this trip specifically all we needed for them were a few outfits, swimming shorts, towels, sandals/sneakers, underwear and diapers, and sun screen. On this trip Steven had his buggy board and AJ got sand castle buckets and pail. See, it can't get easier than that :)

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By 5:30am we were on our way to pick up FIL and his wife. When we got to their house they were waiting outside for us. Apparently they were up since 4am and even made a DD run before we got there. They put their bags in our car and I decided to sit with Steven on the third row of hubby's truck. AJ and Sonia sat together on the second row and hubby and his dad sat in the front seats. I thought that by me sitting on the last row it would give everyone enough room to change positions during the trip. Well, as per my son it was the worse ride of his life. We made a quick stop at McDs for breakfast sandwiches and coffee and being that I was super tired I decided to fall asleep after eating. I slept the entire way there. Again per my son, I'm a bad car sleeper and not only was I snoring but I also used him as a cushion for my head and legs. Needless to say that he was awake the entire ride and after we arrived in OC he never sat on the back row with me again. Not at all. I found it funny when we were leaving the beach later that morning that he pulled forward the seat and told me to get in first. Then he pushed the seat back into place and got himself in between AJ and Sonia. I asked him why he sat there and that's when he told me about his horrible ride experience seating with me. Jajaja

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We arrived at OC at 8:30am and that was way too early to check in at the resort. So we parked on 6th Ave and walked on over to the beach. Steven and the boys changed into their swimming shorts in the car and put on sunscreen while we grabbed the beach tent, towels, and 2 chairs. That's the only thing I forgot, our beach chairs so for the entire weekend we only had 2 instead of 5. We headed to the beach and made a stop at DD for a bathroom run, more coffee, and sandwiches. I had their frozen caramel colatta for the first time and it was delicious! So good but way too big. I drank most of it. We hung out on their little seating area just chit chatting for almost an hour before setting up at the beach. I thought to myself that this was going to be a relaxing vacation for sure. I had no doubt of it. 


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It didn't take long before hubby and Steven took advantage of the warm weather to start enjoying themselves. They headed right to the water while AJ played with the sand, FIL slept like a King, Sonia played games in her iPad, and I laid down for what I hoped would be a nice reading/nap session but of course I spent most of my time snapping pictures, texting, and playing with AJ. After a little while AJ wanted to go to the water so I took advantage to take some more pictures.

A little after noon we decided to gather our things and head on over to the resort to check in and eat lunch. Lucky for us our room was ready earlier than 3pm so they gave us the keys right away. After settling in the hubby and FIL went out to buy lunch. We were in the mood for chicken and potatoes wedges from a near by gas station/food stop. I am drawing a blank here trying to remember the name of the place but boy is their chicken good. I think it took longer to pick it up than what it lasted in the room. After lunch we walked over to the outside pool. Surprisingly this time I was all over that water. But to be fair I think the weather was a lot warmer than back in June. This time around in OC the temperature was in the 90s. HOT! Then while hubby was in the hot tub and FIL and Sonia went to the room I took the boys miniature golfing which is alongside the pool. That was interesting and harder than I thought. I've only done it once or twice before and that was many many years ago. AJ of course was obsessed with the balls and had his own little game going on in between ours. Then I kept on missing the hole and I'm sure the kids behind us thought I sucked bad since they had to wait for me every time. At the end AJ had a tantrum because the last hole kept the balls and he wanted his balls! It took a lot of convincing to take him away and have him return his "stick".

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Many hours later we headed back to the room to shower and go over to the boardwalk for some walking, pizza, and ice cream! I find it funny how much we remember about this place. There were so many places that brought back memories as far back as 2005 when I first started dating the hubby. So many different hotels we stood at before finding this one, so many restaurant we ate at, so many birthdays celebrated here, and the people we've come with.This place is like a second home :)


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This night after eating some delicious pizza and wings we walked from 17th Ave past over 1st Ave and back again to 17th Ave. On our way back we stopped at Basket Robins for some yummy ice cream. Various times over our walk we stopped to take pictures with some "Disney Characters" and to hear boardwalk musicians sing/play the guitar, etc. By 11pm we were back in our room ready for bed. It was a very long and eventful first day back at OCMD.


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I was obsessed with the ocean and moon this time around 


Day2&3

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Steven Goes to 4th Grade

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It's bittersweet to realize that this child of mine has started the 4th grade. I mean I remember clearly the details of his birth and even when he was just a tiny toddler, about 7 years ago. With his new journey I also can't help but to feel nostalgic since it was exactly 19 years ago that I came to the States and started school in the 4th grade. I remember my experience as a young Spanish speaking child trying to learn the language and the materials being taught. Now thinking back I realize that it wasn't the material that was hard, it was learning it while not knowing the language. It was tough. But enough about me, back to my fourth grader.


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Oh Steven, having you start the fourth grade has not been easy for me (or your brother). I'm constantly expecting so much from you that sometimes I forget that you are still only a child and you are not me. I was force to grow up faster than I would have liked from my childhood and I always told myself it would be different for my kids but it hasn't been. I like to say that I blame my expectations on your size, you are almost as tall as me and the way you express yourself, yet at the same time your maturity level is not as high as I like to believe it is making you just what you are, a child. Now that I have that drilled into my head I hope to take it a bit easier on you and I hope this school year become one of the best one yet.

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He was that upset to see upu walk away into a "building"

You are so smart and know a lot more than what you give yourself credit for. I don't like that you don't realize all that you are capable of doing but hopefully it won't take long for you to see it too.

You made it through the first week just fine. Your enthusiasm about the things you will get to learn this year is priceless. I wish you the best on your journey through the fourth grade my child. I love you more than the world will ever know. 

Good Luck!

Mom

Monday, September 14, 2015

OCMD 2015 Part 1: Day 4

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So I'm finally finishing up our last day of our first trip to OCMD. And that my friend is why I don't document vacations, because I can't never keep up with them. But then I read other bloggers vacation posts which are extremely detailed like Julia's here and I wish I had the time, energy, and motivation to write something as well written as she does but I always fail. This year I said that I would finish both trips even if it takes me all of 2015 to complete them. But knowing now how much work goes in to the detailed stuff I'm thinking that next time I'll probably be doing "trip highlights" instead. So be on the look out for those since we have quite a few trips coming up.

On our 4th day in OC we did what we had been doing every day since we got there. We woke up early and headed over to the beach. I guess the realization of it being the last day we were going to be there gave us motivation to wake up early and take advantage of the day ahead. 

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At the beach we simply relaxed. We were all just enjoying the morning ocean side, we don't have nice beaches around us back at home so this is plain luxury. And I'm not even a beach person. Meaning I don't care much for salt water or sticky sand. But the view and the relaxation is all worth it. 

As I had BIL take one last picture of me and the hubby we had a beach photographer come near us and ask us to pose for him. We declined because we knew exactly how that works, they take beautiful pictures of your family and then beat you over the head with the price for them. No way, no sir, thank you. But he got us hahaha. He asked and insisted until we gave in and said "ok, we will pose for you but it'll be just for fun. We are not buying!" He agreed. He tooks pictures upon pictures of my little family and a few of the parents to be then one more of the entire group minus MIL's husband since he had walked over to the boardwalk for a bit. Then just like that our beach time was over. We packed our belongings and headed to the resort to pack up the room.  By 11:30am we were all set to check out. We were planning on staying till later in the afternoon and heading home by 3ish. We had some pool time, ate some pizza, and then headed back to the pavillion to grill.


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At the pavillion the kids palyed, my mom enjoyed some more time in the inside hot tub, and the rest of the adults sat around talking while hubby and MIL grilled lunch. We talked about our time there, how many times we had taken small trips like that to OC and how much fun it has been to see the family grow year after year. 

While we waited for the food I thought it would be cool to have a little recording session asking everyone about their time in OC and boy oh boy this family sure is nuts hahaha but I love them either way. (Link to video coming soon.)

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After eating we changed our wet clothes in the inside pool bathrooms which have showers :) and packed the cars. My mom and I drove back with the hubby, Miguel and Stephanie drove my car back, and MIL and her entourage drove back in their car. There was a huge storm happening back home and MIL even contemplated staying another night but hubby shut down that idea faster then it had popped in her head. He was itching to get back to work. We left OC a little before 3pm and we made it home right around 6pm.

It never gets old. No matter how many times we come to this place we don't get tired of it. The memories that have been built here, the laughs, the fights, the tears, the money spent, it has all been worth it. Trip after trip I look forward to coming back once again.


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Stay tune for OCMD 2015 Part 2!

Day1|Day2|Day3|

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

OCMD 2015 Part 1: Day 3

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Day three was the most eventful day of our trip and my favorite day.

Even with us going to bed as early as we did the night before we did not wake up as easy as we had planned. Like the day before we wanted to be one of the firsts people on the beach mainly because MIL was going to be taking some maternity pictures of the parents to be. Did I ever mentioned that MIL is an inpatient lady? Well she is and since we missed her was u call at the crack of dawn she up and left us. When we woke up and noticed her calls on each phone in the room we knew we were in deep trouble. We called her back shortly after but she said that she refused to wait for us too wake up and that if we wanted to meet her she would be at the beach enjoying herself.

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We quickly got ready and drove to meet her but even with that she had been there for over 30 minutes already. Again we made a DD coffee and sandwiches for some of us. Stephanie and AJ ate cereal in the room while everyone else got ready.You should have seen her face as we walked down the sand toward them, #Priceless! she was pissed.


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Once on the beach everyone got assigned a job. The guys were to watch the kids while I played MIL's assistant for the photo shoot. The weather was perfect and the sun was bright as ever. After a few photos I started to get frustrated with myself and my Nikkon. It was either I had no idea what I was doing or my camera was going bad because I could not get it to focus properly how/where I wanted. So I shoot blindly hoping that some of the pictures would come out decent. And quite frankly   I do have a few favorites. I got lucky there. Now if only i knew how to work photoshop to make my faves even better :)


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After our photo shoot was over I volunteer MIL to take a few pictures of my little family and as we're posing one of the random beach photographer comes over and persuades us to pose for him. We knew right away we weren't going too, although those pictures come out super nice they are way too expensive. But he insisted and insisted until we agreed to pose for him. He only took pictures of my little family and a couple of Steph and Miguel. After a little while the sun got super hot and the beach was getting too packed so we headed back to the resort to drop off our chairs and towels to then head back to the beach area to go on a boat ride.


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Every time we come to OC we go on a boat ride. The kids love it because they get splash with sea water and they get to see dolphins. They say that it is not always the case that you get to see them but every time we've done the ride we've seen them. This time of day was super hot and I swear my skin was on fire after it was over. I'm sure that having salt water on my skin didn't help the issue. AJ ended up falling asleep during the ride which was expected since it was right around nap time for him.

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After the boat ride we bought some ice cream and walked over to the car to drive back to the resort. The  husband ordered some pizza for us to eat for lunch and  after eating we went to the kids water area which has a huge pirate ship with slides and water sprinklers. Is like a little water park for the kids. Being in there brought back so many memories from the early days that we would come here with Steven when he was just about AJ's age. I tried taking a picture of AJ like the one I have of Steven at the same age with his short curly hair but it didn't work out, he was terrified of the water coming down. We were there for a little while and the kids had a great time. Afterwards some headed to the pool and the other half went to the picnic area to get started on dinner. Hubby and MIL grilled chicken, steak and corn and we had that with potatoes. 



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After dinner we showered and got ready for the go-carts. I think this was the kids favorite part as well as the big kids (the husbands). What is it about boys and cars anyways? I got i two different ones and although it was fun there's is only so much going around in circles I can handle. Boys will be boys I guess and kids will be kids.


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After the go-carts we drove over to the beach to walk the boardwalk. My mom stayed in the room with AJ so that was nice since he wasn't going to be able to get in any car rides and it was getting late for him so he'd probably would have fallen asleep on the boardwalk anyways. 

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I bought a funnel cake to take back to the room on our way back and after getting in the room and eating it I felt sick. It could hVe been that it wasn't what I expected or that it was late to be eating that but either way no more funnel cake for me. Just thinking about it makes me sick to my stomach. Yuck. We also got some fries for my mom and she too felt that they weren't as good as before. Before we knew it everyone was sleeping and it was day four, our last day in OCMD.

Day1|Day2|Day4