Well first I must say that it has been a rough morning. Last night I went to bed and was attacked by tabanos. These tropical devils are the bain of my existence. Mosquitoes are attracted to my husband. (like most other breathing species) but Tabanos- oh no- they feed on me. About 2 weeks ago I had a bad nights sleep and had several bites on my legs and was scratching all night. Then it happened again last night.
For me, a tabano bite is very clear- it welts up and is very large and in many cases will swell. I was in misery last night. I maybe slept for about 2 solid hours. The rest was tossing and turning and scratching. This morning while sweeping I found a dead tabano on the floor of my house. Sweeping his lifeless little body into the dust pan, I could not help but wonder if he had dropped dead from exhaustion from biting me so many times.
On the flip side, as I write now I am smelling the wonderful aroma of fresh jasmine flowers. My friend has been coming by in the morning before she heads to work. She lives an hour and a half bus ride north of me and has been busing in every day for work. She always brings me a little something. A snippet of wild flowers, a j some coffee- random little things to bringten my morning. At brighten in does. The smell of these little beauties is amazing. It reminds me that I really must plant some jasmine in my garden.
Yesterdays post about my neighbor taking my bike was met by kind ears with lots of advice. Even by the time I had sat back down to my computer I had already decided, Mindy, she is your neighbor and friend- she needed to use it- so do not be mad anymore. But lets set up some ground rules and boundaries. Okay- no problem. except that she has not brought back the bike yet?????
Yesterday when I took the kids to their ballet class I passed by where she works and she was not there- which did not surprise me- but then when I got home- the bike was not at my house and no one was at her house. This sent me back into being annoyed.
I think the way to deal with it is to get a lock like all have said and just kindly tell her- I understand that she needs to borrow my bike sometime but that it was a brand new bike and now has problems. I like to ride my bike- long bike rides for health and exercise. So when the front wheel wobbles like it now does- that is a problem for me. the seat is no longer attached in the back- that is a problem for me.
I mean- I know that I am a go to girl for things on my street because I will very rarely say no- and why would I - people want to use my blender- fine- they do and bring it back- or my big pot to cook beans in- no problem- but these things have come back fast and in good condition- that is not the case with my bike.
Ahhh- the jasmine flower high is wearing off and I am geting upset again. Breath- not a big deal- I just need to start laying some ground work.
Posted at 9/29/2010 08:18:00 AM | | 5 Comments
Okay. Now if I actually have to sit back and ask myself... "Mindy, do you have anything to really be upset about, or are you just being a bitch?" Then I have probably already answered the question but...
Now I am so grateful to have my car and it has totally changed my life. But... I do not want to drive it all the time. My son's school is very near and easy to get to by bike and he is small enough to fit on the back. So you can imagine my annoyance when I was driving home from dropping Lena off at school and there goes my neighbor off to work on ... wait for it... MY BIKE!
Now to be fair... I was probably not going to take Akilean on the bike today because it is very wet and looks like it will rain a lot more. But still. Why are you going into my yard and grabbing my bike. She had it for almost 2 months when I was in SF and had my family visiting here. Which I did not mind. I told her- I have all the kids so it is no problem. Just please take care of it. It is a brand new bike.
Well, after the 2 months I finally got it back and it had a few little problems- okay fine- whatever. I am not going to say anything. It is just part of having a bike in general but. AAAAAaHAHAHAHAHAA! I am really annoyed. It is already hard to deal with the way that a lot of locals view Americans in that we can simply buy more of whatever it is that we have. Now. I know that we might look like we have more then most- and we do. We were fortunate enough back in the states to 1) have jobs that were able to buy the things that we like, 2) a plethora of stores (word use for you momma! jaja) where you can buy very nice things for crazy cheap prices. - And yes I know- that this is due tot he gluttony of the USA. 3) we had family that were fortunate in their money and many of the things that we have were once theirs or gifts and 4) and this is the real kicker- an incredibly frugal and crafty wife that can find or make cheap things look amazing! This is a stage craft skill that I am glad I have.
But that does not mean that if you break one of my nice looking wine glasses or coffee mugs that I can run out and grab a new one. I live here too remember? Just like you. My husband makes the same money as everyone else and my rent is the same and so is my food. Only difference is that at every turn I am paying just a little bit more then most others might because once again there is this idea that we Americans have stashes of money in our pockets.
Anyway. I am just a little pissed about it. Again. I know that I was not going to use it today but I am just annoyed that she keeps going into my yard and taking it. Now if it had just been a few times- hey can I use your bike really fast? We do that with our neighbor- we have gone into his yard and used the little bbq before. Things like that. But not every time I cook. I mean... sorry but buy a bike. And the reason she does not have one is the last 2 have been stolen and gotten broken. So why would want to hand over my bike. just because I have a car does not mean I do not want or use my bike.
Okay. End of rant. Now I just have to wait till she gets home to tell her to stop taking it. Even better- get a new bike lock and take away the option. But even the constant asking me if she can borrow it is driving me crazy.
Posted at 9/28/2010 07:27:00 AM | | 13 Comments
We had the moderators here and that is always great as well as some others. We had the meet up at Om Tulum once again. Om is a big favorite of many people both on the forum and locals alike so I was more then happy to eat there again.
And this time Angelo pulled out all the stops for an amazing meal. In our honor a magnificent meal and tequila tasting was planned. The chef was cooking all sorts of new items that are not on the menu and even Angelo had a good time tasting new dishes.
Angelo and Om were wonderful hosts as always and we all had a really good time. The food was simply unreal- as was the tequila and mescal. We all had such a good time. But this one better put forth in pictures.
The food was so amazing. I have some notes on more details. But it is easy to say one of the very best meals that I have had in a long time.
We had 6 tequilas and 1 mescal ranging from blanco- repasado- anejo- almond- pomegranate- it was amazing!!!!
Chilis en Nogales, Mexican Pizza, Nut Chili mole sauce and Tuna pastor! Easy to say- I got spoiled.
We are so excited to have launched the Tulum Living School Project website. Here is where we will have all the details of our all our charity ,projects in detail.
There is a new addition - The donation counter widget. If you want to help and would be willing you can easily add this gadget to your own website. Our school project donation widget will appear on your site and we could reach a much wider audience. All funds collected are collected through pay pal.
Simply click on the Add to site button and it will tell you what to do. It would be so appreciated.
I hope that you all like the website and that you will follow and help spread the word about this project. I think that we will be able to do some amazing things in Tulum.
Thank you to everyone for your support. I look forward to sharing all of our progress.
http://www.tulumschools.blogspot.com/ is the site. Thanks all.
There were parties, fairs, parades and festivities everywhere. The kids and I spent the first part of the day on the 15th on the Yaaj-Ximbal tour. It was wonderful as always. A 4x4 trip through the jungle were we all got bounced around the back of the cars while we flew over rocks and trees in the middle of the jungle.
I do really miss working for this company but alas- I have my family to take car of. Not that I am complaining- other then the increase of funds- I much prefer staying at home with my kids. the kids loved the zip line- like always. They are so crazy. We had a good group of people we were with and all had a great time.
The new cenote/ cave that they go in is amazing. I really enjoyed it. And I was really impressed with the fact that the kids were not scared. I mean- being deep in a cave can be sort of scary for some kids but not my little adventure seekers. Poor little Akilean did get pretty cold thought. I cannot imagine why? He has so much meat on his bones.(dripping with sarcasm) jajaja. He eats a ton and yet still has this body that is just soooooo skinny. He has the same build as my brother Ryan and my Uncle Brad. There is nothing that will change it- he is a slender kid.
Anyway. Lena was blessed with this solid frame. People are often amazed when they pick her up. She is still slender but packs some serious weight in her muscles. When I told her into the cenote- she confirmed for me my belief that she will take a strong interest in Scuba diving. At only 6 years old she begged me to take off her life jacket and let her explore under the water more.
After the fun day on the tour we headed home for a quick nap and then off to the party at Lena's school. Well, you would think that the party would be there- since there was a note and a big deal about everyone had to come to the event at the school. So you can imagine our annoyance when we got to the school and there was nothing. No note of cancellation- and certainly no party. Oh well-
Now I new that Thursday was happeneing and almost 100% likely Friday, but Wednesday????? Well, Okay. But wit? What? They are done at 9:00 on Tuesday! WOW that is a celebration of Independance indeed.
I think Akilean was the cutest but I am sure that every mother says that. There was a lot of work but not a lot of parade time. Nor was the route something that was going to take them by many people. Oh well. It was so cute none the less.
Well, the German movie stuff went really well. I got to work for 2 days and Lena 1 day- which is great. I thought to myself- hey perfect. We made her tuition for next month. And wouldn't that be great if that were actually the case. One of the things that I hate about the schools here are the constant stream of crap that you have to buy ALL THE TIME. There is always some project or homework or school activity that requires you to buy hundreds of pesos worth of crap.
This has gotten so much worse as the bicentennial Independence day is coming around. There is always some flag that we have to buy or crepe flowers that we have to make or even better- a massive costume to construct and paint.
And the thing that I hate the most is that I am the one who ends up looking like a total ass. Here no one seems to tell you anything that is going on. They just have the kids relay information to the parents. What to buy, when they are needed for extra hours or when there is no school at all.
Do you know what happens when you give a 6 year old messages to pass along to their parents? They forget or do not give the details always correctly. I imagine that is because they told it to a 6 year old. And you know what really sucks... I look like an ass. I am sick of being 5 steps behind and yet I am always doing something.
Posted at 9/13/2010 08:02:00 AM | | 5 Comments
Yesterday was a day full of wonderful surprises. 1st - Ruben and I drove around doing all of the little things that we needed to get done. We paid our rent, our bills and Lena's tuition and then drove over to our land that still sits as a little piece of jungle. While picking up Akilean we were told that tomorrow (today) there was going to be a field trip to the planetarium that has has been set up in the main square. It is a tiny little thing on the top of a half semi truck but amazing just the same- especially in the eyes of a child.
Ruben and I had already decided that we were going to take both of the kids on Friday when it opens to the public. But Akilean's school had been given 40 passes for the kids to attend. We had already signed up and paid the 5 pesos for Akilean when I had the obvious idea that we should let one of the other students go whose parents might not be taking them because we knew that Akilean was going to be going anyway. We gave up his spot and were told that he should not come to school tomorrow because the kids that were going would be gone and the rest of the kids would not have school. - okay no worries.
So we went home to complete the rest of what we do- laundry- homework- playing with friends- you know.. the norm. Ruben was running a little late to catch the bus for work down to the beach so I said.. "hey love, do you want us to give you a ride?" I love saying that. Since we were going to be there anyway the kids and I grabbed our suits and spent about 1 hour on the beach. It was wonderful. No need to spend the whole day or hours- just a little play time in the waves before heading back home. It was perfect.
After doing homework we were greeted by a wonderful surprise. My good friend Desire and her daughter were in town from Puerto Morelos and came by to see us. We were having a wonderful evening when we heard a man;s voice at the door.
It was my good friend Carlos. He had been trying to get a hold of me all day but alas- my phone was in the bag that was stolen and here- you do not get your number back. So he tracked me down to tell me the news that Dream's, a large all inclusive hotel chain, really wanted Lena for a promotional video that they were shooting.
It pays 500 pesos, which is awesome considering her tuition is 1500 pesos and is already difficult to meet. They also wanted Ruben but unfortunately he has to work and cannot get out of it. But Lena gets to have her acting debut.
She is so unbelievably excited. I am not a fan of her missing school and this new school is not like her old one of- whatever- bring her or no- no importa. This school is very serious about her education and I love that. BUT... she would have to miss a day. I went this morning while dropping off the other little girl that we take to school and talked with her teacher. I told her that I am so sorry that Lena would not be at school today and explained why. I can do all of the work and lessons with her in the house and would gladly do more but I really want Lena to have this opportunity.
Not only is it a chance for her to earn 1/3 of her tuition in a day but what an experience. She is so in love with performing and does so all the time but now she gets to do it .. shall we say.. for real.
As a theater major in college and someone who has been acting since about the same age as Lena, I am so happy for her. For 1 there is the money that she will earn today towards her school which is wonderful, but there is also the opportunity for so much more. But even if it never goes anywhere and she never does it again... what an amazing experience for her. I know that she is going to have a great time today and I get to go with her and Akilean will be with me. As luck would have it he does not have school today.
I am eager to see how the whole thing plays out and to see the final video. I am so proud of my little girl and I am so happy she gets to have this experience. Now that I am armed with a camera I will take a ton of photos of my sweet heart in her debut and know that we all have a good time watching her.
I look forward to sharing the pics and the experience with my friends and family and all of my readers. Have a great day.
Posted at 9/07/2010 07:53:00 AM | | 4 Comments
I love her school so much. I have decided that I am going to have a sale of all of my old cloths. I have some beautiful cloths that are from the United States that simply do not work for my life here. Here they are just going to get destroyed. So I decided that I would take photos and have a sort of internet garage sale to raise money for her tuition. My mom will be here next month for my birthday and she will take the items home and mail them. Stay tuned- this should be sometime in the next week. Once it is up - please let anyone that you think might like them about my sale. I was going to sell the kids old cloths as well but have decided that there are too many mothers here that are in need of kids cloths and unable to buy them. So it makes more sense to share those with them.
I think it will be a great success. The cloths that I owned in the states are very nice and perfect for the office. But here- they are just bin fillers. jaja.
Posted at 9/05/2010 08:29:00 AM | | 2 Comments
Well - either way- today it is just half. This morning while emptying some things from the car-- (yes it is here- more on that in a moment...) I felt something go into my eye. It felt very large and very painful. I went into my house to see if I could flush it out. After several minutes of it still feeling very painful I decided to walk over to my good friend Gina's house. She is the grandmother to some friends of my kids and she always has wonderful homeopathic solutions to common problems - especially ones that seem specific to this area.
In other news. Ruben got here yesterday around 6 in the evening. He was originally going to call me from a few hours away to give me an idea when he would be home. He was not able to and did not want to go through the towns to find a phone- he just wanted to get home. It was a wonderful surprise to see him. He looked as handsome as ever.
I did grab some of Lena's furniture from her room as it breaks down easily and she is so excited about that. Akilean's toys from the states were for a much younger person so I did not bring many. I did however bring him a HUGE storage bin FULL of Legos. This is a love hate thing.
As a mom- they are messy and hurt when you step on them but on the flip side- the hours of imaginative play and building is priceless. There are so many little people, doors and windows a even some castles- star wars stuff and what not. He is already having a blast and the neighbor girls are here and they are all playing and having a great time with them so that is worth it.
The car is great and looks great in front of my house. But every time I look outside I think..."who is here?" It is going to take a while to get used to the fact that it is my car. especially since this has never been my car before so I do not associate myself with it at all. But it is perfect. 4 doors, great gas mileage, perfect color- not flashy or too noticeable, nothing fancy or expensive inside the car to attract theft and my grandma took great car of it. I have some fun memories of shopping trips my grandma and I had in that car so that is just 1 more bonus.
Posted at 9/04/2010 02:55:00 PM | | 5 Comments
I have lived in a time of women and I have been blessed with the education of women that not only are we the equals of men but that in may ways we are their superiors. We do things that men cannot. We literally take things from our own bodies and create a new creature. A blessing and miracle indeed. So it is with this very forward think inking mind that I say the following sentance. .......................................... I NEED RUBEN!
Let me rephrase. It is not that I need him. I do not need him to make me something more then I can be myself but I need him to be my full potential. The potential that I already have but he draws out of me. I desire him. He makes me better. He actually makes me want to be better then I want to make myself and be better for the world aroundme- my kids being the first effect.
I love myself so much. I am the very best friend that I will ever have in the entire world. I already know this. There are those ladies that are blessed with wonderful friends. And while I do feel so very blessed to have the wonderful friends that i do... there is only 1. Only 1 whose opinion could actually sway me. My own! And I NEED HIM! Not to live and function but to be the best me.
All of my dearest friends know 3 facts about me. 1) I love and accept anyone and their opinions, but I will not be subject to them. 2) you, I and all those around us are due and deserving of love, compasion and respect and all of the very best emotions that we, as humans, can share. and 3) that I am all devoted to my love, Ruben.
While not an ideal start in the fairy tale sense... from the moment (and I literally mean the moment I saw him) I knew. ..
I knew that he was meant to make me happy and that I was meant to make him happy and reach his full potential as well.
I say this as I have been in my home for a week with my kids stressed- working- making school lunches and juntas and all of the rest that makes life obnoxious and wonderful in the same second. And this I can do. I can do it by myself.
This is not something that I doubt or question. It is that I simply do not want to do anything with out him.
He is - as they say.... "my essence" (Thank you once again Shakespeare for saying what I could not and in fewer words and ones far more gracious then my own.) He is my everything.
I look forward to my next tattoo that is a love letter to him. " I love you because I know you, beginning to end, first to last, together forever."
How did I get so lucky that after 10 years I am still madly - and I mean that sort of drive you bonkers- jump in your through - everything is simply better when he is around sort of love.
Not everyone has that. And I do. And I am so thankful and happy about it. and he will be home in my arms so soon.
I was reading today- while missing him the post that spurred our sudden move to Mexico. The call that said... "hey, by the way, the love of your life is not coming home tonight." And you know what....??? I do not even care. All I need-- Scratch that-- all I want is our family.
I am the very best version of me when I am with him. and he will be home so soon. Only 11.7 more hours- dependiong on traffic. jaja.
Posted at 9/03/2010 12:33:00 AM | | 3 Comments
The kids have been sleeping with me while Ruben is away which makes for a very tight squeeze with 3 people in a double bed - and little warm for my ideal night but hey- I have 2 living teddy bears to snuggle with. I woke up around 4 to a kiss on the forehead from Lena. - Not a bad midnight treat.
So far the school year is off to a great start. The kids love a schedule and thrive on one. When we are on schedule- the lunches and dinners are better, the uniforms are clean and ready and there is no- oh- I forgot to do 1 piece of homework. I am really loving it and I know when we get the car here in a few days it will get even better.
Ruben should be home hopefully late Friday evening. When he stopped off in Guanajuato to see his grandmother and great grandfather- he ended spending the whole day there as it is clear that his great grandfather will pass away sometime in the next week. He has stopped eating and is in a great deal of pain. I do not hear Ruben upset very often but he is taking the hit pretty hard.
Also is grandmother Elena (the woman that we named Kennedy Elena after) is also not doing well. She is much older and is by herself. The family that is in town does not visit or help as often as Ruben would like to see. She recently fell down the stairs and cannot move well. He stayed and did a number of things for her. I told him that he could stay longer if wanted but he unfortunately has to be back at work for a wedding on Saturday morning. I am glad that he at least got to spend one day there.
Soon he will be home and everything will be perfect. I miss him so much a there is a huge hole in our family with him not here. Soon- he will be home soon. (this has been my mantra the past few days!)
Posted at 9/02/2010 07:55:00 AM | | 5 Comments
Okay. so I literally dropped off the planet for a while. I took my niece and nephews back to San Francisco. When I went last time to get the kids it was much more a vacation for me.I hung with my friends, I ate food- I drank wine- and did other ton-o-fun things. But this time... Not so much.
By the time that I headed up to Portland I was already tired and really missing the fam. And I guess Akilean had a really hard time with me being gone. Lena was just fine- she loved being the lady of the house. But Akilean would cry a lot and at totally random times. It got to the point where even the teacher called in Ruben and asked him if everything was okay for us at home- or if we had split up because Akilean would start crying all of a sudden and he did not want to do anything in class or play with his friends. Ruben said he did not even want to eat. (Then again- Akilean LOVES my food!) Ruben told the teacher that I was in the states and would be home soon.
So here is the short version of the trip:
Friday- got to Portland had lunch with my dad and got to spend the afternoon and evening with a good friend of mine-
Sat & Sunday were spent at my dad's beach house with my brother and his kids and some friends. That was really great. This house is amazing and really peaceful and there is a possibility that we might lose it in this economy. Sort of sad really because I never really appreciated it as a kid but now---
Monday was the packing day. When I left I kept a bunch of stuff and got to go back and get it. It was like free shopping with stuff you already knew you liked. The car is packed with great fun stuff for the kids- beach toys and my art work! Finally I will have my art work. It is nothing to fancy but I love it. Ironic though because we bought a lot of art from Mexico- basic cheap street paintings but beautiful. We bought them at a little cantina and now we are bringing them to Mexico. jaja
Tuesday was all about my dump truck. Yes I have a dump truck. I know strange. But I do. Well this guy was helping me sell it and then just never returned my phone calls. Well in Mexico I could not really do anything but in the states I sent him a text message that I was on my way to report the truck stolen- 10 minutes later I got a call. This is still a sore point for me so I will talk about it another time.
Then it was off to Mexico. A very long drive. The car was still in my deceased grandma's name so I had to drive to SF- fill of the last few spots left with stuff- seriously- you should see this car- there is no room left for anything.
Then drive to Fresno and hope all goes well with the transfer. It is a probate thing and all sorts of difficult but it did get done so I am very happy about that. This was the first hurdle to crossing the boarder- It had to be in my name. Then it was off for another long drive to San Diego. I got to be with my mom which is like breathing for me. So that was great.
The the next hurdle was crossing the boarder and getting the permit. My mom and I emptied out a seat for her and drove to Tijuana where we first got the tourist card... CHECK. Then off to get the car permit. They did not even search my car or anything so that was cool. I had nothing to declare and they just asked what all the stuff was. I told them- my kids live in Mexico with their father and I am bringing some stuff for their rooms. On I went for my permit.
That process was pretty easy but mostly because we had done our research. Permit.... CHECK. Then my mom got me Mexican car insurance because USA insurance is not valid in MX. After a nice lunch and a farmacia stop we were off to wait in the long line to get back into the USA. It was not too bad of a wait.
But I cannot believe that how smooth it all went. I was very glad about that. So we booked Ruben and myself tickets so we could switch places. At this point Ruben and I decided that I would just do the drive myself. We do not have the money for tickets- but my mom vetoed that choice. But hey- she literally created my eye ball out of shit from her own body so she has that right.
So at this point I was off to meet Ruben- got to see him for a like 2 hours and then off again. Here is where the first and really only wrinkle with the car came in.
Ruben has the car and the sticker on the car and copies of all the paperwork- insurance both USA and MX, my IDs, our marriage cert, the copy of the paper that the sticker was attached to. Yeah- that last one... that was our problem. Even though I was told not to leave it in the car because in case my car gets stolen I would need that for my records-
He got all the way to Sonora and after about 5 hours the bitch at the boarder said that he needed the original?!?! What- you have the sticker on the front of the car and copies of everything. What a nightmare- so I was going to have to next day air this paper to him and he would have to sit and wait for me to get this done.
He drove back to TJ to see if he had better luck there. NOPE! The last option before me mailing this doc was for him to drive back to Sonora again and hope that lady was not there and that the other people were better to him. I sat in my house- just distraught waiting for his call. I just want my husband home!!!! I got the call that said he is past and on his way. YEAH!!!!
So now he is driving the very long drive through Mexico to come home to me and bring me- Officially now.... MY CAR! and all the shit I managed to jam into it.
Akilean is so happy I am home. He is at my side almost all of the time and keeps telling me how much he missed me while I was in the USA. And now the house is clean- which is really needed. I mean DAMN! But now it is done and life is getting back to normal.
Okay- that is the update. now I can write about fun stuff. I literally dropped the Internet planet for a while. There was no one I was with that had Internet. Which I was not expecting. Back to life.
Posted at 9/01/2010 12:11:00 PM | | 4 Comments