Sunday, January 29, 2012

My Tata

While we were in Texas earlier this month my grandfather fell ill and passed away within a few days.  I was very upset and really torn because we had gone to Texas to visit Jeremiah's grandfather who has been sick and presumed that it would be our last time seeing him but while we were there my own grandfather passed away.  It was hard not being there in the hospital with all my family gathered around but I had just seen him days before we left and he looked good so I am comforted in knowing that my last images of him were happy and joyous.

My Tata was so many things to me, he was...
  • the maker of great pancakes 
  • the mexican cook who taught me to make so make delicious mexican family recipes
    • chorizo
    • salsa
    • tamales
    • menudo
  • a babysitter
  • a chauffer (in highschool he drove us around before we had a car)
  • a Zoo trip (our grandparents took us to the zoo every other week as children)
  • a trip to the fair (I only remember ever going to the fair with my grandparents)
  • a Texan (born and raised in San Antonio)
  • a great husband, a loving dad and a wonderful Grandfather/Tata
He and my grandmother took care of us until about the 5th grade and then most summers after that till about college.  He was a huge part of my life and I will miss him so much but I will also have so many memories.  In these last few years I really started to reminice on my memories of both my grandparents.  Especially when I would go pick them up and take them to their doctor appointments and I would remember all the times they took me when I was sick.  It went from them caring for me to me walking them in, checking them in and then going in to listen to the doctors and report back to my mother.  It is funny how life changes and roles switch.

In his life he saw so much, he was one of 12 siblings who grew up poor in San Antonio, Texas before Texas was part of the US.  He was married to my grandmother for over 63 years and had 3 children, 9 grandchildren and 18 great grandchildren.  He joined the Navy during WWII and fought off the shores of Vietnam and Korea and was a survival training camp instructor to the Navy pilots.  He and my mothers family lived in the Philippines in the 60's and he was instrumental in starting the survival training camp there.  Later when he retired from the Navy he joined the Border Patrol where he worked until the late 70's when he became a full time stay at home TATA and helped to raise not only me, my sister and my brother but my cousin Sarah.  He loved to take us to the zoo or the Wild Animal Park and pack us home made fried chicken and macaroni salad with juice boxes.  We had so much fun as children with him and I will miss him so so much.

Monday, January 23, 2012

70 years is a LONG time

We recently got back from a wonderful vacation in Texas where we got to visit with family and celebrate Jeremiah's grandparents 70th wedding anniversary.  Yep that's right 70 years!  To be honest, the magnitude of 70 years didn't hit me until a few days before we left, my dear friend Lisa's husband said, "well I guess we'll never make it to 70 Lisa" and I thought "why not?".  Duh!  Because he would be over 100 years old and the likely hood of that happening is slim to none, sorry Lisa :).  Then I realized that pretty much no one these days makes it to 70 years of marriage simply because of age and Grandma and Grandpa Woody really had something to celebrate.  Grandma Woody was 14 when she got married and Grandpa was 17 so now they are 84 and 87 respectively and happy as ever.  When you are around them you can really tell that they have had a full life and that they truly do love each other.  I would say that the reason they made it to 70 is not only because of love for each other but because of their common strength and bond which is their love and honor of God that they keep in their lives and their hearts.  They are a shinning example of FAITH.

Happy Anniversary Grandma and Grandpa Woody!
We also had a wonderful time visiting with all of our other Texas family which includes 2 of Jeremiahs brothers, Jeremiahs sister, 2 of our sister-in-laws, 6 nieces and 4 nephews.  All of them have lived in San Diego at one time or another and we used to have lots of family time but over the years we have lost more and more to that big state of Texas.  It was a wonderful time and I miss them all so much already.
 The whole family.
Me and my wonderful sister-in-laws.
 Me swinging with Eli.
Family picture at our nephew, Zachary's, birthday party.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

A ceiling RE-Vamp

Back in the summer of 2010 my wonderful sister and I were hanging out at my house because she had a pinched nerve in her back and couldn't go to work.  She was lounging at my house watching movies and taking it easy when she looked up at my ceiling (see picture below) and said..."lets take those tiles down".

"Okay" I thought and I started pulling them by one they came down and I was so excited to finally be getting rid of the hospital/office looking ceiling tiles.  Only after they were all down we were left with this. 

...and it was much worse.  After the big reveal, she said..."man that's gonna be hard to fix!...thanks sister, you were not so "wonderful" at that point :).

Those dots you see are actually some kind of black glue from who knows what led infested year, and they are rock solid.  The only way they were coming down was with a high power sander that I feared would spray lead dust everywhere.  Well, we lived with those dots for a good year while I looked and looked for a solution to the dot dilemma.  I just didn't know how we were going to get rid of them;  I thought about painting them but decided you would still be able to see the outline of them and that would just be tacky.  Finally I found these styrofoam ceiling tiles online and knew they were the answer.  Especially since they were only about $3.50 per tile as opposed to $15+ for metal ones.  A click of a button and 5 days later they were on my doorstep.

Now came problem #2, getting them up.  It wasn't that hard but it was labor intensive since our hands were up over our heads and we had a little over 100 to install, oh and by this time I was in my late 2nd/early 3rd trimester of pregnancy so I wasn't much help.  Luckily my wonderful husband plus brother-in-law and sister-in-law came to the rescue and put them up.  We applied them with a thin coat of tile mortar and the result is this...

It looks so so much more better than those horrible hospital grade tiles and so so so much better than those black tar dots.

Here is a side by side before/after view...

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

3 Months already

Look at our cute little 3 monther...

At 3 months Eli is:
  • trying desperately to suck his thumb, I keep pulling it out and replacing it with a pacifier cause I figure I can eventually take a paci away permanently where as a thumb is stuck to his hand
  • really enjoying tummy time and likes to look all around
  • smiling and coo-ing at anyone who will listen
  • laughing and giggling when you tickle his tummy 
  • pushing up on his legs when you have him in your lap
He is such a joy and he really does make my heart ache at the thought of these days passing to fast and him being all grown up.

My 1st Pinterest project

I don't know about you but I just LOVE Pinterest!  I love the ideas and the crafts and the projects that it inspires.

My first ever Pinterest project didn't require much but I love it all the same.  Here is the inspiration for the project...

And here is my finished version.

I just used white pearl straight pins to keep the outfit and announcement in place the way I wanted them and then just placed the "E" in the corner and shut the door.  Voi La!

I got the shadow box from Home Goods for $15, the "E" came from Michaels for about $3 and the announcement was a left over.  Eli's outfit was a gift from a friend and he was so cute and tiny in when he came home.

I have so many other projects I want to do but there just never seems to be enough time.  In the meantime I will keep dreaming and "Pinning".

Also, I entered The Pinterest Challenge over at Happy-Go-Lucky
The Pinterest Challenge

Updated Shelf decor

Well as you can see I never painted my shelves the white color I wanted to last year.  I decided to keep them the way they are for now and enjoy what I have instead of always trying to change things.  I did however, get some new frames for the top shelf to showcase our family photos.  The frames came from Target and I love the new configuration.

(All pictures taken by me or a family member)

Monday, January 2, 2012

Christmas 2011/Eli's First Christmas

Christmas is such a fun time of year and this year was even better since we got to share it with our precious Eli.  He just turned 3 months on Christmas Eve so he didn't actually realize what was going on but it was still fun to have him be a part of all the festivities.

On Christmas Eve our tradition is to go to my in-laws house and celebrate with the entire family.  That was exactly what we did, but instead of it being the beautiful chaos of 10+ grandchildren and 3 or more sister-in-laws in the kitchen, it was really mellow with only 4 total (including Eli) grand kids and only 2 sister-in-laws.  A lot of my in-law family lives in TX and this year they all stayed home for the holidays.  Not to worry though, coming this Friday, the entire Gonzalez family will be back in TX all together...can't wait.  So this year on Christmas Eve we ate a nice meal and then had a very mellow present opening celebration.  Eli got to experience his first present opening with his Uncle David.

The Gonzalez gift opening tradition is that the youngest opens thier gift first and then so on and so on until the oldest opens theirs last.  Here are the 4 gift openings that we shared in this year and this was Eli's first year as the youngest one.

After the fun at the Gonzalez house was over, we headed to my parents house to spend the night so that we would be there Christmas morning, I have never spent a Christmas morning away from my parents house.  We woke around 7 AM and my sister and brother-in-law came over to open presents (then they went back to their house to open with her in-laws) then it was breakfast and off to Church.

It was a fun weekend filled with lots of traditions, friends and family.  We have evening photos of the little guy in a rather cute and borderline embarrassing Baby's 1st Christmas outfit that I will share another day.