Jaime Loves Stuff : June 2013


There's No Place Like Home

Wow. What a roller coaster of a weekend. I am home from saying good bye to my dad and hello to my siblings. It was bittersweet. It sucks to return home because of a death but it was great to see my nieces, nephews, GREAT nephews and nieces, and my siblings. We had a good time. I'll put up a full blog post later with more photos. Just wanted to say "Hello!" Enjoy these few. And in true Kansas fashion, it was WINDY!

Good Bye Dad...

Just a quick update. My father's health deteriorated quite rapidly and on Friday, my family was advised he had a few days to a few weeks left to live. He passed away this morning. I am in Arizona, he is in Kansas. I will be leaving (most likely) on Friday and will be gone a few days. See you all upon my return.

Friday: Food Finds

So.

Happy Friday guys!

I haven't blogged much this week.  It's been one of THOSE weeks.  Yeah.  You know, one of those weeks.    I won't go into the details because the week ended really, really good.  So I am good with that.

I have been shying away from the camera lately but I took a photo of myself (heh.  totally selfie!) but I liked it and I thought it looked tres chic.  Might make it my button.  Might not.  What do you think?

Ok. My title- Food finds! Yum! Found a great little restaurant in Phoenix that is vegan.  Well, I didn't find it, my sister did.  I'm aiming to become more vegetarian based with my diet but I am not becoming a vegan.  I love Asian food but I shy away from the restaurants because I have a SEVERE fish and shellfish allergy that developed in my 30s.  I go into prophylactic shock so yep, my beloved foods are a no go.  Vegan and vegetarian restaurants are usually a safe bet.  So, my sister took me to Green and I ordered the eggless rolls and spicy peanut "chicken".  All I can say is... winning.  Seriously winning.  I'm sold.  I'm going back.  I will go into more details on the food but WHOA MOMMA! GOOOOOOOOOOOOOD stuff.  Seriously good stuff.
Spicy Peanut "Chicken" on noodles.

Eggless Rolls

Meatless Monday... Fail.

Yep.

You read it right.  I failed on Meatless Monday.  Oh no, I didn't fail on the meal but I did fail to take a picture and post it! Ha. Why did I fail on that part? It was sooooooooooooo good, I couldn't wait. Haha.

Here's what we had:

Gonovese Basil Pesto (in a jar. From Costco).
Spinach and Cheese filled ravioli (in a package. From Costco).

Instant heaven.  INSTANT HEAVEN, I SAY!!!

Don't judge that I didn't cook, it's been 110+ since Saturday.  It's literally hotter than hell.  I am not heating up this place any more than I have to. LOL

What did you eat?

MommyJuice Wine

Oh Phoenix, your summers are so brutal.  No matter how well aware we are of your coming, it's still a shock to the system.  I've lived in humid areas and let me tell you, humid or dry- above 105 degree F is brutal and oppressive.

How do us moms cool down? With something CHILLED and COOL, of course.  Or a dip in the pool.  Or you're like me and hibernate and stay pasty all summer long.  I am soooooo pasty.  I glow in the dark with how pale I am!

Well... speaking of chilled drinks, I was given a chance to try out Mommyjuice Wines.  Yes.  I said MOMMYJUICE! The kids aren't the only ones who get a special juice in a sippy cup :)
How awesome is this tumbler? It's perfect for the pool or sitting out on the patio.  I dig it.  It's MY sippy cup.
MommyJuice is owned and made by a mom.  This company knows that being a mom is a serious juggling act.  We are the masters of multitasking and juggling.  That's no lie! Whether you are a stay at home mom or a working mom, the job NEVER ends.  I don't know about you but after my daughter is asleep, that is my down time to sit back and relax and catch up on Game of Thrones, Mad Men, Sherlock, Downton Abbey, etc.  That's my me-time.  It's always badly needed.  I like to treat myself and am not afraid to do so!

I was given a chance to try the Pool Party Pink:

  • A classic, dry, Southern Rhône-style Rosé. Bright raspberry, cherry and fresh strawberry aromas, with a hint of bottlebrush and violet. Marichino cherry, strawberry and pink grapefruit flavors are followed by a refreshingly dry finish. Ideal for a summer BBQ party. Blend: 65% Grenache, 16% Mourvèdre, 7% Zinfandel, 7% Pinot Noir, 5% Syrah
I also was given the chance to try White Wine:
Aromas of tropical fruit salad—pineapples, guava and bananas. Hints of lemon grass and citrus rind as well. Kiwi, lime and a hit of grassiness round out this very fruit forward Chardonnay. Drop the kids at a sitter and drink on a picnic with your significant other or at GNO (Girl’s Night Out).
Blend: 100% Chardonnay

They are both very crisp and refreshing wines.  Both wines would make for a GREAT Girl's Night (In or Out!).  They are both excellent, in my opinion, during the summer heat.  I am not a wine connoisseur so I am not sure I can recommend any pairing and besides, isn't this the meal and the dessert in wine? Actually, I recommend pairing these up with a night of Downton Abbey! Heehee.



Where can you buy them you ask?  MommyJuice Red and White wines are available nationally and in California CVS Stores and even in Northern California Target Stores.  I am stoked because they are coming to Arizona CVS stores SOON! Yay! Pool Party Pink is currently only available to purchase online here and of course, if you can't find any of the wines at your local stores, you can always purchase online here.

If you really want to see these in your local store, definitely talk to your store about carrying the wines! It can never hurt to ask.  I always bug my local Sprouts manager to carry certain items (i.e., certain tea that I loooove).


Oh and helllooo Vine! I think I love you! How cool is this app? I love it!



I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective, and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Why I Forgave...the Unforgivable.

Source

Most of my long time readers know the story behind my daughter's brain injury.  However, I have quite a few new readers who may or may not have gotten that far in my blog and our story. My daughter has a severe traumatic brain injury.  She was shaken.  Yes, my daughter was shaken.  Yes, she is MY biological child (it really peeves me when people ask me if she was mine.  Oh and you wouldn't believe that people ask me if I did it... really? Come on!).  She is MY baby.  Forever.  I carried her for 42 weeks (Yep! I was miserably overdue in the extreme Arizona summer heat.).  I went through labor and delivery.  I went through every fear of being a mother with her.  My ultimate fear came true- my daughter was abused.  Severely.  It's not believed by the doctors, detectives, attorneys that this was abuse that was happening for a long time.  As a matter of fact, we all believe this was a one time incident.  The person who did this snapped and sadly, my daughter pays the price of this "snap" and will pay for the rest of her life.  My daughter's brain will never heal.  The parts that are damaged and parts that were removed are gone.  Forever.  Her left hand will never function.  She will always have a limp.  She will always have cognitive delays and issues with controlling her emotions.  These are the cold hard facts of her life.

She was 11 months old when she was injured.  As a matter of fact, her injurversay (Thanks Renee for that word!) is in a little over a month from now, July 8, 2004.  She will be 10 in two months.  

I spent the first few years after her injury depressed.  I was despondent.  I felt so much despair, anger, sadness, hatred, and I grieved.  I grieved hard.  It hurt so deeply to know that somebody intentionally hurt my daughter and almost stole her life.  My daughter is lucky- she's alive.  Not only is she alive- she can walk, talk, make decisions, argue, sing, laugh, and do the things that other children who have suffered from shaken baby syndrome can't do.  

The person who did this only received a sentence of five years probation.  I grieved over what I perceived to be injustice.  My daughter is worth more than five years PROBATION.  My daughter will NEVER go to college.  She will NEVER live on her own.  I will be taking care of her for the rest of our lives.  

However.  A big however.  I learned to forgive this person.  Forgiving somebody does not mean that you are saying what they did was ok.  What was done was NOT ok but I love myself and my daughter too much to live in the anger, the hatred, the sadness, and all the heart-destroying emotions that was overcoming me. I even distanced myself emotionally from my daughter.   I needed to be healthier to take care of my child.  I forgave for me.  I forgave for my daughter.  I also have learned to forgive myself.  I had no control over what happened.  I can't change it.  If I could, I would but that's not possible and there's no use focusing on what can never be.   I no longer hate this person.  As a matter of fact, I hope that this person has peace.  I am still seeking full peace.  I am trying.  I constantly falter.  I cuss too much.  I am impatient.  I can be mean.  I am trying to better myself each and every day.  When my emotions are out of whack, my daughter reacts.  She's too important to me.  I spent too many years being focused on what happened to her to see that she needed my attention.  She needed my focus.  She needed me.  She needed ME to be with her MENTALLY and EMOTIONALLY.  I am not 100% healed, I don't believe I will be 100%.   I still have flashbacks to the moment I saw her lying in the ICU with tubes out of her head, in a coma on life support.  I still remember the two months we lived in the hospital while she was recovering.  I still flashback to the phone call.  The emergency room. To sitting on the homicide floor at police headquarters while my daughter was in emergency neurosurgery.  I can't forget.  

I get better every day. 
I get stronger each day.
I am slowly becoming more patient.
I am becoming a better parent each day.  
I learned to not focus on what happened. 
I learned not to focus on what could have been.
I embrace what is.  
My daughter can do ballet.  An adaptive ballet.
My daughter gets to enjoy life.  
I chant and meditate.  
Buddhism has helped me find peace just as your faith helps to guide you to find yours. 

I forgave so I could move on with my life and release the bitterness that grabbed a hold of me.  It helps my daughter to know that we live for today.  Or so I try.  It's been nearly nine years... maybe in another nine, I will be 9 times stronger and so will my daughter.   A work in progress.  I am moody and tempermental but I am getting better each day.


Sapiosexual?


Absolutely.  I love a good nerdy convo.

Happy Friday, y'all. Hope you all have a GREAT weekend!


 If you found me from

  xoxo Rebecca

Let me know! If you follow me, let me know! I will return the love and I will follow you back!

Random Wednesday... stuff

Just random thoughts that cross my mind.  Whether they make me mad, happy, giggle, melt or whatnot... it's just random.

I am obsessed with Lana Del Rey lately.  I absolutely ADORE National Anthem.  The video is fantabulous!

She's amazing.  I didn't dig her at first but after a listen through on the radio one day, I appreciated her style and voice.

I feel hipster.
THIS video of my daughter doing the Gangnam Style with Baxter from the Arizona Diamondbacks. It's awesome. It's sideways. I totally tripped over another kid but... it's awesome. Ha. Now THIS:


It's fab.  I think I found it on Instagram (if you want credit, just holler at me and I'll give credit where credit is due). She does the bitchface quite well.  Too well.  I think I'm afflicted with the Chronic BitchFace.  People are always telling me "It can't be that bad".  Uh dude.  I'm frakkin' happy.  Like floatingly happy.  I just don't look it! Haha!

Tom Selleck in a pair of tiny shorts and his epic stache.  'Nuf said.  Enjoy. 


I've posted before that I am working on getting in shape.
Sometimes you need that "slap in the face" moment when you realize how bad you look.  Wow.  I feel like I sound very narcissistic and obsessed but I'm not.  LOL I am not trying to get skinny, I really want to be tighter and feel better about myself.  Overall, I want to be healthy but lawd, not only have I gained weight- I went FRUMPY!!! I need to go from FRUMPY to FABULOUS! Heeeeeeeeeeellllllllppppppppppppppp meeeeeeeeeeee!
Not a pretty sight. Ha ha.

It's ok.  I am in frump recovery!


o_id

Meatless Mondays: Bean Tacos

So. I love beans.  Like really, really love beans.

Saturday afternoon, I started a pot of beans in the crockpot.  I make a GOOD pot of beans.  I know, I know... meatless Mondays but my beans need bacon.  I am trying to quit meat but... I love beans with bacon. Mmmmm bacon.  Some day, I'll quit you.  Back to my point, I started a pot.  I put in my washed beans, a quartered vidalia onion, chopped up raw bacon and my seasonings (cumin, chili powder and garlic) and plenty of water.

I took my daughter to her special needs ballet and we were gone about three hours.  I came home to a glorious smell.  I started salivating.  I went to check on my beans and guess what? I forgot to put the freaking lid on it.  Frrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk.  The water was all gone.  I dumped the crock of beans.  Very, very sad.  I would have been fine if I didn't have raw bacon in it.  I was worried about whether or not the temperature was stable enough during that time to kill the bacteria and I am a bit food poisoning paranoid.  I had big dreams for those beans.  I was going to eat them ALLLLL week.  ALL week.

Needless to say, I am using canned beans.  I will make another pot soon and maybe I'll use a ham hock or bacon.  I don't know.  I'm still deeply saddened.

So, for Meatless Monday I still had my bean tacos.  It was GOOD.  I used two cans of  ranch style beans (one with vidalia onions and the other with jalapenos.  Oh and they're pinto beans) and a can of Rotel.  I used the Mexican style (cilantro and lime in with the tomatoes and green chilies).  I made a batch of spanish rice.  I chopped up some cabbage and cilantro.  I also made a cucumber salsa (cucumber, roma tomatoes, cilantro, jalapeno, green onions, and lime juice) to top.

Did I tell you that this was GOOD? I mean GOOD!

I'm not much of a food photographer ( I am improving and some day, I hope to be GREAT but until then...) but here it is.  Goodness.  Nom. Nom. Nom.


Music and Amazon.com

Who is a student? I was.  Well.  I will continue to be for some time. I just finished one degree and I plan to continue on.  I will, possibly this fall, take classes on web design, graphic design and become a better photographer.  They are all areas that I deeply desire to learn and I need to be in a class to learn.  I am excited.  It will be great! It will also help me become a better blogger!

So. I am a huge amazon.com fan! HUGE.  I am also a PRIME member.  Being a prime member has several perks: free ebooks in the lending library, free two day shipping and free streaming videos (some.  It's nice because although I am a Netflix subscriber, Amazon does have some different options!).  Prime is $79 a year BUT if you are a student, you can get it for $39 a year! Smoking deal.  It really is! You just need your .edu email and you are good to go!

I am trying to raise some money for my daughter's upcoming birthday and for each referral I get who signs up for Amazon Student, I get a $5 referral credit! Please, spread the word!

Click here to sign up!

Speaking of Amazon, I buy most of my music through Amazon and play through their Cloud Player App on my iPhone.  Well THIS image here truly depicts my playlist.

What do you have that might make you say "Don't judge"? Put your music on shuffle and list the the first TEN songs that come up.

Here are mine.  Seriously.  Do. Not. Judge. Ha.

  1. Hold You In My Arms- Ray LaMontagne
  2. Suzie (I Love You) - Michael Bernard Fitzgerald
  3. Say It Isn't So - Hall & Oates
  4. Once- Pearl Jam
  5. Hangin' Tough- New Kids on the Block
  6. Time and Time Again- Counting Crows
  7. All I Do is Dream of You- Michael Buble
  8. Never- Moving Pictures (Footloose Soundtrack)
  9. You Bring Me Joy- Mary J. Blige
  10. Hey Eugene- Pink Martini
Ok.  Not TOOOOO bad.  Ha.  It's much worse than that but I love my music. 

Bam. You're IT! 

Oh and don't cheat.  Put it out there! 
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