Saturday, October 15, 2016

Queens Food Day




Today was Queen's Food Day at Socrates Sculpture Park.

The event was hosted by Socrates Sculpture Park, GrownNYC Greenmarket, and City Harvest and it was a phenomenal Fall treat for adults and children.

I was honored to have volunteered in this year's Queen's Food Day because I got to help at the coolest station there: #thebluebusproject.

#thebluebusproject 

The Blue Bus Project brings the artistic expression to the streets. Annalisa Iadicicco is the artist behind the the Blue Bus Project that promotes social and political change. Annalisa repurposes materials for her art work.
Annalisa working with some students 

The Blue Bus was a bus that was parked around her neighborhood for months. She left a note wanting to buy and the rest is history. Opportunities always come in the form of grit.



It was a great opportunity to develop my art skills and help lots of children and their parents make flowers from vinyl records, packing bubble wrap, and beads.

All in a day's good work.



I love it when I can incorporate my daughters into volunteer events. It's one thing to teach them to participate and another one to teach them to get involved.


Eleanor & Margaret keeping the workstation clean 

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Reflections: Giving love


There are gems of people who will love you at your worst and those are the people that deserve your best. 

But be great to everyone regardless. Don't be consumed with the negativity of the world and your environment. Smile when someone you don't know makes eye contact with you and acknowledge their passing through your day. Befriend people because you want to and not because they have something to offer you. When you can't remember to laugh look at memes or Dave Chapelle's comedic routine and make laughing an every day priority. You should laugh every day regardless of how you feel. You should love every day regardless if you don't feel loved. 

Don't let the outside mess with who you are inside. And if you don't feel like a person able to offer all of the above to strangers, acquaintances, friends, and family...practice. Practice every day. 

Not all the time are we going to bask in life's glory and when we struggle these small things will lifts us up. 

You will learn that even if you are not where you want to be, that even if you are broke, you still have something of value to offer the world: YOU. 

No more

I can forgive many things, but I can't forgive not feeling loved.

If there is a theme this year, that theme is feeling unloved and finding out what I do about it. I will unfollow you, I will distance myself, and I will want to kick you out from my home.

Yes, I can be obsessive. I am the person with the longest lasting crushes I know. The minute I feel that I have a crush on you, I will have it for years. I will not come out and say it and take many emotional beatings because of it. But in my mind, if you are worth it (and I already think you are) I will happily take those beatings for you. One day you will just realize how much you really like me too. But all comes to an end when I realize that you don't ignore me out of shyness. 

What to do then? Finish falling off your Earth and disappear. That's easy to do.

But I find that I can't even forgive someone who claims to love me but shows me otherwise. The deceit is even worse. 

Conversation after conversation and among arguing I wonder...why are you still lying to me?...as I tally up all the emotional loans that I have given this person and how he has failed to repay...how I know that he will never pay based on 6 yrs. of relationship...why are you still doing this to me?...

It's heartbreaking even if you did not love him. It's heartbreaking because of the quality that was given and the crap you received in return. 

I am heartbroken because of another family that does not have a chance and that will be part of a statistic either way. To stay together would mean to sit down and continue being emotionally beaten by someone who you don't love and who doesn't love you. 

To walk away means 6 yrs. in a challenging relationship because for what? 

But I don't forgive feeling unloved. I just don't. 


Tuesday, January 6, 2015

7 Tips: How to KEEP Your Closet Organized



Closet Rules: 
When you buy something new it is mandatory to throw something out
Purge at every season change or twice a year!

And now Tips in KEEPING the peace in your closet 

1. Replace mismatched plastic and/or wire hangers with matching ones such as these. The uniform look of the hangers will instantly make your closet seem organized.

Joy Mangano 


2. Do invest in wood hangers for heavier items such as coats.



3. Have a pattern when hanging clothes. Hang them in  short to long order, in order to maximize the space underneath.
Uniformity gives the illusion of organized photo via storagesolutionsforsmallspaces.net

4. Group each item of clothing and hang them together (dresses with dresses, skirts with skirts...etc.) or if space does not permit, and you don't have the adequate closet tools for it, color code your wardrobe instead. (I color code my clothes).

5. Keep everything visibly organized: Use storage boxes with clear see through windows if you don't have enough shelves and can't work shelves into your closet. I use these in my daughters' closet.
Like It Modular Storage System from The Container Store


6. Use a modular shoe cubby (if you don't want to put your shoes on shelves). You can customize these and make them fit your space.



**Remember to always purchase products that will work for you in the space that you currently have**

7. HABIT ALERT!: Put your stuff back immediately after usage: daily closet makeovers won't make a difference in your life if you don't keep up with the maintenance. Get into the habit of putting whatever you are not wearing but is on top of the bed back in the closet. At the end of the day, if the garment is not going into the hamper, put it back in its place. Don't shove into the closet, fold them neatly or hang them on a hanger and properly place it in your closet.

Get the people in your home to comply and if they don't KICK THEM OUT or Put it back yourself.


Visit StorageSolutionsforSmallSpaces.net for more ideas

These

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Give Me Everything I Want and Nothing I Need

9 Gifts That Will Dazzle Her (Me) 
1.A T-Shirt for a Cause:
'tis the season to give 

I love t-shirts and I love to give, like really give my attention, my time, my things, and my money to charities. So, I have been supporting Sevenly.org since 2012. They support different causes and they make giving cool because you buy a t-shirt and the organization donates $7 to the charity represented by the t-shirt. Cool gift! I think it's very thoughtful to give someone (me) a t-shirt of a cause you know that they (me) are into.

I would love that as a gift. I support education, women's right (all of them), cancer, poverty, child abuse, human trafficking...etc.


2. Signature Necklace:
Signature Necklace from BrevityJewely.com

My signature originates when my Father taught me to forge his signature when I was 11 years old. This was great because I made the signature my own and over the years it has become completely mine. Most people say I sign like a banker.

I'm into my signature so much I would love to see it in a necklace. Brevity Jewelry has what I want! I want the gold necklace, so it comes at a steep price. But there are other cheaper options from Etsy for the "right now" fix.

3. More Monogram/personalized shhhhhtuff. 
Anthropologie 
A girl loves personalized stuff: "L", "S", "LS", "Nana", "Luisana", "Lucy", "9"...all counts. I love them in just about anything. I, don't mind "E" and "M" either. "E & M <3 cute="" l="" nbsp="" p="">


LS 


4. Valentino's Rockstud Pumps or NOT! 
Found this steal from BCBG Paris at DSW for less than $70! Similar here

I am extremely obsessed with these shoes, but not to the point that I would fork over about $1k to have them.

BCGB Paris made sure to get me what I want, without the price. I mean I am not pretentious, I don't need to show that I can own a Valentino. I just want the look for a lot lot less, $70 is much more up my alley.

If you have been after these coveted shoes and like to know more about them, check out in their closet, this blog really keeps up with these shoes and fashion bloggers wearing them.

5. SensatioNail Gel Nail Polish Kits 
SensatioNail Gel Polish Kits

If there is something I hate less than onions is going to the nail salon. It's not like I am a slob and don't like doing my nails, I feel uncomfortable having someone do my nails. I prefer to do them at home. I have over a year that I don't go to a nail salon. I'm a DIY girl and I take care of my own nails.

I have tried different nail care systems, but this one convinces me. I am very hands on and my nails usually chip, like right away. So, this is what I want to try. I have tried a different version that did not convince me, but if Gabrielle Union is the brand ambassador then it must be good!

6. Adidas Stan Smith Sneakers
Adidas Stan Smith Sneakers

I just want to see what the hype is all about. These sneakers are attractive. I remember that I used to debate whether to get them or the Superstars...and I always opted for the Superstars. I, recently, read that these sneakers were taken off the shelf a couple of years ago and now they are making a comeback.

7. Adidas Superstar 2.0 
I love these to the moon and back 

While browsing the site, these came up like an item I would be interested in...and they are right! I don't know what happened to my other Adidas, but I do't find them anywhere. Oh well. Love these and always welcome the opportunity of having them again.

BTW I am a size 8 in women and 6 in men. 

8. A trip to Iceland for a month
Come Fly With Me 
I thought I could get a little creative here. Well, I want to see the Aurora Borealis, so I want to travel to Iceland and stay there for a month (with the girls). Hey, when I dream, I obsess and when I obsess I make dreams realities.

Anyway, Black Tomato seems like a legit site that it'll be extremely helpful when I plan my month long vacation.

9.
These gorgeous things are available on HSN 

I'm into tanzanite and I am into moonstones, together they make me drool. I wanna have these like nothing else. No more words needed.

That's that...for now. Although, part of my New Year Resolution is to want less things.

My shoes are so comfortable that I do yoga and take a selfie at the same time!




Saturday, December 20, 2014

Reflections: The Red Lamp

Red Lamp 
It must be in the spirit of the Holiday season and the inevitable aging we do throughout the year, that we start to feel nostalgic around this time.

I don't know, it's the first year I feel like this around this time. Reminiscing about 2006. I don't know why. There was nothing in particular that year or the year after that.

What I am nostalgic about is a red lamp I bought some time during the winter of 2006. It was late in the evening and I was coming from work when I saw a lamp inside [what used to be] Victor's furniture store on Broadway between 30th and 31st street.

The store was closed, but since the owner knew me he led me go inside to see the lamp. She was gorgeous. The best lamp I have ever seen. The red shade gave an excellent ambience. I was so afraid to ask for the price of that lamp.

I had fallen in love with other lamps before; only to find out that they were $150+

But nothing like this particular lamp. This was love. I looked at it and the bus flew by outside. Another hour to wait in the freezing weather. How I hated what winter did to the night. How lonely I felt. It was miserable living. Everything was horrendous and when I had to freeze my fingers and my toes waiting for that bus to go home.

And that red lamp. The guy needed to close. How much is it. It was some crazy price. I guess she was $40. I don't remember it was something crazy enough that I did not think twice about taking out the money at a time when I was mostly frugal.

And I bought the red lamp. I was so happy. I rushed down Broadway bearing my lamp. I did not look at things as trophies it ways to make me happy. I was not attached to things like that. But this lamp made me happy.

She became part of my desk in my room with my things and Trinity (another lamp I had). She came to be part of my Saturdays and Sundays and the days to follow.

It was the epitome of my essence, that time. I would stay up writing and reading at night. Learning from books that I had.

It was a time I kept to myself. As usual. But it didn't bother me anymore. I knew I was too far off from the beginning to go back. I had to continue and the lamp gave beauty to those nights.

So, I took a second look at things that I had enjoyed and got into them. In a way, I was happy.

I feel nostalgic because I can almost see myself sitting by my glass desk reading or writing with the lamp aiding me and thinking that I was not happy. If only I had seen with more conviction that I was doing something good.

That Chris Botti's "The Look of Love" would always remind me of myself when I started to know myself. There in that room, with the red lamp late at night. That time when I didn't have much responsibilities. That time when I yearned to go back to school because I needed to feel ambitious and be good in something.

But most importantly, I'm afraid for myself today. Afraid that in 8 years I would look back and think that I was happy today, even though I did not feel it.

Always wanting something. Forgetting that I have things that I have grown to love and that again I seek that structure.

I've searched for that red lamp or lamp that would look similar. But the rest of me just let go of the past, things and people there that I could not bring in my present. The lamp was sacrificed a long time ago.

But I still think of her. How beautiful she made the room look. That room. I can no longer dream about returning to my room. I used to have reoccurring dreams about returning to my room and staying there.

But I know that not even in my dreams I will go back. Nothing can bring me back. That's why I don't remember if I dream or not. It seems that I don't care anymore.

Until I am waiting at NYU, trying to convince myself that I do [indeed] want to change again. That I am grown enough to do this. That I can begin trusting my decisions again. That I should not be afraid of the actions I make anymore.
What I did before was inevitable. I can trust myself again.
And then "The Look of Love" creeps into the random playlist I didn't put together but is marked as a favorite song...from a long time ago.

That Luisana falling in love with a lamp. Admiring her lamp. Protecting the lamp. But not enough to save it when the shade fell apart. That Luisana forgot about love and got rid of the lamp.

But the song. It reminds me of those blurred days with bright nights. I don't know why, it was nothing special...I was always alone.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

7 Tips: Potty Training Your Toddler

With how expensive diapers can be and the amount of time used during the day changing diapers (or giving showers) of course our #1 priority is to potty train them to finish the madness! But our frustration lies in the fact that Potty Training is on your Child's Time.


1. Toilet Training in Less Than a Day: I urge you to read this book and let it sync in and then  read it again and start making a plan. I can say that it is highly effective, but you have to understand the book. The first time I tried it, it was ineffective because I was just following steps and it frustrated me.

When I gave it a second try, I prepared myself for it and with it. I had already gone through several steps of this innovative training system and so I didn't repeat it and I modified it by going straight to toilet training, I got the girls a toilet insert and that was it. No potty chair for me (I don't like extra things in my apartment). One trained in a day and the other one on the second day.


2. YouTube Playlist: I made a YouTube playlist that had everything to do with potty and potty training. I started showing them this playlist in March and the girls became very excited bout potty training then.

I gave up on the 3rd day of training (my fault), but the girls became increasingly familiar with this playlist as I conditioned their mind throughout the summer, 

3. Don't take it personal: If you are not able to get to your child potty trained...don't take it personal. Potty training does not say anything about you as a Mom or Dad and it certainly does not say anything about your child either. Some children potty train easier than others, THIS does not mean that they will be A students.


For a child to impress me, they got to take the lead and potty train on their own. Ask your friends about potty training tips and look around in the internet and don't take it personal.
Parents are mandated teachers

4. Play Pretend (In your head): Make believe that you are a teacher or an aunt or uncle and you are teaching a child (THAT IS NOT YOUR OWN) to potty train. Thinking this way when we are teaching them helps us be objective and your child can relax as he/she feels that she does not need to impress you (children always want to impress their parents and feel horrible when they fail).

In my experience, it creates a much more relaxed atmosphere and the child can focus on what is really important: LEARNING. Children are very susceptible at this age and we don't want to traumatize their learning abilities. Be open and receptive. You are their first teacher.

When I cannot be their mother because I tend to be very tough (I admit it), I become their aunt (in my head, it's not like I tell them that I am their aunt). I change into another person, a much more objective person and that gives them the love and support they need at that time.  

Getting them prepared takes a constant focus on discipline and learning

5. Before training them YOU MUST PREPARE THEM. You have to know that your child is ready by knowing and being confident that they follow instructions. 

This was most important. Them being clumpsy at putting on their clothes or not doing it at all, is not indicative of being prepared. But I did get them to potty train and they barely put their pants on right.

But they do follow directions well and they are awesome listeners. That was all I needed. 

Nooooooo...at least not with kids.

6. Don't bribe them. I have been using big girl panties with my daughters since they were 1 and I stopped using onesies. I couldn't bribe them with that. No candy, no soda. Going to the toilet is something every living organism does naturally and I was not going to bribe them for it.

I don't bribe them in our regular life. No is a no and yes is a yes. If I give them something is because I want to and not because they had to do something for it. You get it. No bribes. I have twins, it would be hell for me if I bribed them all the time.

So, I live by this rule: NO BRIBES. No matter what. Don't give them your phone to get them to behave in public. Don't promise to get them a new video game if they get good grades. Don't tell them that you will give them candy/soda/ potato chips if they clean their room. Don't give them soda so that they can go to the toilet.

The only time I give them a mere lollipop or buy them soda is when it's summer and we have to walk for blocks. Remember they are under 3 years old and I don't use a stroller and will not carry them unless I absolutely have to. Any other time, I just have to deal with it.

You have that much control over your kids. Be firm. Don't get them into bad habits this early on.

7. Be Patient: Think that by this time next week your toddler will be potty trained. Think that it will just be a few intense hours while he/she gets the message.

The girls still wear diapers when they sleep at night, although Margaret is waking up at night wanting to go pee pee. So, I guess that it will come naturally to them.

Those are my Hot 7 Tips to get the ball rolling. Let me tell you that is much better than spanking them because they had accidents or traumatizing them.

You know I like to make my life easy because I don't have time for nuisance. I rather have time for THIS