Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Mommy, Just One Question

Every now and then, the inquisitive mind of my 10 year old gets in gear and starts thinking of all kinds of questions to ask.

Now, I love when he does this. It tells me that he's interested in learning about something. The questions do come at random times, mainly when they pop in his head. 

The only time that I dread these questions is morning time. Quite frankly, my brain is just on autopilot. It's just waking up. And to have to answer questions that require me to think of an appropriate answer, especially when it's not a straightforward answer, like 2+2=4, is work. 

I'll be honest, there are times that I tell him I can't answer that right now cause I'm not fully awake and not thinking right this morning. Sometimes we revisit the question, other times we don't. 

Now, there are times where he asks a question and gets more than he bargained for. I give him a nice, long and explained answer to whatever he asked. When I answer him like that, he gets this exasperated look on his face and says "oh not again". I love it. All he wants is a simple answer, I sometimes can't do simple. He knows this.

Now all this being said, I've yet to get the big question (well big question for me), "what is sex?". 

I'm slowly preparing myself for that conversation. It has to happen and soon. 

What big questions are you asked early in the morning that requires more brain power than you have at that moment to answer? 

My thinker... He loves to read. 


Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Abby's Survival Cover Reveal

AbbysSurvival (1)



The sequel to Liv's Existence Love and Loss. Two tiny words, each with their own powerful impact. They can both happen at any given moment and both can forever change your soul. It’s how you allow it to change you that matters. The hard part is finding a balance when the loss gets overwhelming. How do you do that when everyone you thought you couldn’t live without leaves you? Loss is inevitable. I’ve had enough in my life to know that much. Now I’ve just got to figure out how to survive it. Ages 18+ due to adult situations and violence. Some situations may be difficult for some readers.


I was so excited for Olivia and Kyle. I couldn’t wait to hear how her first weekend filled with sex was. It took time, but I knew it was worth the wait for both of them. She probably wouldn’t be as available since she finally let go with Kyle. Couldn’t say I blamed her, though. I wanted to be with John every chance I got. Just thinking about what he could do had me squeezing my legs together.
Pulling into Olivia’s apartment complex, I tried to get my thoughts back on her and Kyle. There was no way I could talk about John and me. This needed to be Olivia’s day and the attention needed to be on them. I just hoped Kyle didn’t insist on staying. It was really sweet of John to offer to come over and take Kyle out for a beer while Olivia and I talked. We just had to get Kyle to go.
Just as I started to enter Olivia’s building, emergency vehicles entered the parking lot. An ambulance, a fire truck, and several police vehicles—with full lights and sirens—screeched to a stop just feet from the door. I looked to my left as the building manager opened the door and shooed me out of the way. “I haven’t been up there yet, but I just saw her boyfriend. I tried to stop him, but he shoved me out of his way.” He stopped, and I could see on his face that it registered with him who I was. “You don’t want to go up there.”
“That’s fine, sir. We’ll handle it now.” Police and EMTs ran through the door and started up the stairs. One officer stayed down to talk to the manager, and I slipped through the door when he pointed out Olivia and Kyle’s cars.
My heart was beating fast. It had to be a mistake. There was no way they were talking about Olivia’s apartment. I reached Olivia’s floor and had just seen the last officer enter her apartment. I ran faster as I heard Kyle’s tortured voice at the end of the hall.
“Live, please, please live. I need you to live for me, for us. We can work through this. You just need to live, and I’ll do the rest.” Kyle was on the floor with her across his lap. He started sobbing as the medics tried to pry Olivia out of his arms.
I gripped the doorway. “No! No! No!” The medics pumped oxygen into Olivia’s lungs with a bag over her mouth, as they were yelling vitals to each other. They ran out of the room, leaving Kyle and me alone with the blood on the floor and police looking around. Trying to get Kyle off the floor, I yelled at him, “Come on, Kyle. We need to go. She needs us.”
He just cried and painfully clutched my legs. “She’s gone. How can she leave me? She can’t leave me!”
I tried again to get him up. “You need to go tell her that! We both need to tell her. Let’s go, now!”
Kyle struggled to get up, but he did. We ran into John coming down the hall. “What happened?”
Seeing John broke down what little strength I had and the room started spinning. I only hoped I no longer had to be the strong one. I started sobbing. “I don’t know. Her face was so swollen and there’s so much blood.” I pointed to Olivia’s apartment. He looked in at the scene and gasped as he took a step back.
“We have questions we need answered.” One of the officers came out of Olivia’s apartment.
“They’re going to have to wait until later,” John said, turning back to Kyle and me to escort us out. “We need to be at the hospital. You can ask us there or wait until we’re ready to come in, but now we are going to the hospital,” he yelled over his shoulder.
“One of us will need to follow you there.”
John never turned around as we headed toward the stairs. “Do what you must, but we’re leaving.”


B.L. Mooney started writing when the voices and storylines in her head ran out of room. They were getting too cramped and neither B.L. nor the characters could take it anymore, so she did the only thing she could do--she made room. She always knew she wanted to write, but vowed to make time for it later. Now that she's made time for writing, most everything else falls to the wayside. That seems to suit the characters that keep popping up just fine.
B.L. lives in the Midwest and her other talents include in-demand cookies, a very dry sense of humor, and stealth eavesdropping. Some mannerisms, attitudes, or twists come from random sentences picked up while passing by strangers. So speak up the next time you have something to gossip about. You never know, it may just end up on the pages of the next book you read.
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Liv Existence Cover



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Sunday, April 13, 2014

Ten Random Stuff About Me....

Well, I saw two blog posts from bloggers (crocheters) I follow who shared ten things about themselves and I decided to go for it and do one myself.

Thank you to Sedie, Yarn Obsession, and to Lorene, Cre8tion Crochet.

So for Day 13 of the Ultimate Blog Challenge, here goes...

1.  I have 4 brothers and 4 sisters.

2. Though I was born in New York, I grew up in St. Croix, USVI and will always consider myself an island girl at heart. 

3. I graduated with an Elementary Education Bachelor of Arts degree but I prefer working with preschool children. 

4. Even though I LOVE reading, I also love watching TV. 

5. Considering that I am scared of doing things that can potentially hurt me, like getting a scrape on my knee or breaking a bone (never done that), I desperately want to go skydiving.

6. I have a very real fear of centipedes. I got bit/stung by one and it was the worst pain I've ever experiences. Yes, worse than childbirth. 

7. I have a very real and irrational fear of zombies. Yet, I still watch The Walking Dead and I love the show.

8. I love meeting people even though I still consider myself shy. 

9. I had a miscarriage in between my second and youngest son. Even though we knew nothing could be done and we would miscarry, the baby stop developing, it was still painful.

10. When I love, I love hard and deep, just ask my husband. 

There you have it. Not that you asked for any of this but I just wanted to share. Enjoy.


Saturday, April 12, 2014

Love Spring!

I love that Spring is finally here!

This has been a really long Winter. I've been stateside for 12 years now and still can't get used to the extremely cold weather. I don't always complain because I made the choice to live where I live. However, this Winter has been brutal! For me, at least. I'm an island girl. I grew up in the hot sunshine and cool tradewinds blowing everyday. So, to have experienced as cold a Winter as we had this year was a first for me. Hey, at least I did it, right?

Now that Spring is finally here, I am more than happy. I'm elated! The mornings are still cool but the sun shines on you and warms you up. Everything has new life. New beginnings. A promise of a new day (as cliche as that sounds).

One of my favorite things of Spring and Summer, is that I can now save a bundle on electricity. I installed a clothesline on my deck. Best. Thing. Ever!

Laundry days are the bane of my existence. Well, I exaggerate, cleaning the kitchen is. However, laundry day ranks right up there. BUT crazy as it sounds, I love hanging clothes to dry on the line. So, laundry days are made more bearable when I can use the clothesline. It's therapeutic to me when I hang clothes to dry.

So, here's to good Spring days ahead that allow me to use the clothesline for awesome laundry days!

Day 12 of the Ultimate Blogging Challenge.


Friday, April 11, 2014

Trekking for Veterans - 1VoiceTrekking

Every year, there's a group of adventurous men and women who hike upwards 40, 50 or 60 miles along Appalachian and Catoctin Trails, with an incredible organization, 1VoiceTrekking.

What is +1 Voice Trekking, you ask?

"1VT is an organization that seeks to link people and causes, through extreme hiking and outdoor adventure.  Our main focus is to bring about awareness and connect people in unique social interactions while experiencing nature." - A. Chris Morales, Director of Adventure, 1 Voice Trekking

I've been able to support this organization in the past by donating to their coat and blanket drive that benefitted Voices for Children. 

This year, I'm supporting their latest effort, Racing4Veterans, through a monetary donation. 

The fun thing about this organization is that while the participants are supporting and raising awareness to the different charities they donate to, they are also challenging and pushing themselves past the limit through these grueling and intense hikes. They get to support great causes by being part of an invaluable experience.

If you'd like to donate to 1VoiceTrekking and benefit Racing4Veterans you can do so by going their Crowdrise page and donating:

Also, if you live in the area and would like to participate in the hike, go the 1VoiceTrekking's website to find out more.

Thank you for considering in being part of a support team.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

What If I Told You.....

What if I told you you these little precious moments in life with our children are fleeting and will last for just a few years....

What if I told you you can capture these little moments and remember them for a while....

What if I told you just one minute of your day while help you achieve that.

I was at a loss of what to write about for Day 10 of the Ultimate Blogging Challenge when I came across a post on Google+.

I decided to share it, if only to serve as a reminder for me that my boys are continuously growing and every moment spent with them is precious.

Not my image. 


Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Liquid Gold, What My Life's All About

Bleary eyed, I shuffle out the bed.

My feet are heavy laden with sand and stone as they drag across the floor.

My body is not awake yet, my mind is controlled by that little voice of morning survival.

Repeating a mantra of desperation: Coffee, coffee, coffee, coffee.

I don't know how I made it to the kitchen.

As if on cue, my brain begins to fire up some neurons like an engine begging for gas.

My arms take control.

Take out the coffee, open the percolator, pour water in reservoir, put coffee in filter, turn on stove, put percolator on stove, walk away.

Blinking rapidly, my eyes open, that aroma filling the air is dark, strong and inviting.

My brain is halfway there, the fumes are giving it life, not yet though.

My ears perk up at the sound of the bubbling liquid gold spewing into the percolator.

Magically, a mug appears in my hand and is filled to the brim.

My tongue can hardly stand it, it is begging to have that hot, steaming, strong liquid take over my mouth.

Not yet, my brain is warring with my tongue, my tongue wants to taste it now, my brain wants to savor that first sip. Remember that first time.

Like an addict, I tremble to bring that mug to my lips.

I want to tip the mug back at the risk of getting burned, not too fast though, no, not yet.

As I lift that mug to my mouth, I inhale and fill my nose with that smell that only coffee addicts have come to know and love. It can't be explained.

That liquid gold touches my lips, like a broken dam the coffee rushes through my lips and covers my tongue.

What's this euphoric feeling? Ecstasy? Heaven? My body quickens and then stills.

Finally, I know now what life's all about.... Coffee.


My attempt at poetry. Not the best but it's mines. :-) This is what coffee does to me. This post is day the Ultimate Blog Challenge.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

A Quick Lesson On Gender Equality

"You're turning us into girls." My oldest said when I was telling them what they needed to do after their homework. "Excuse me?" I asked. (Though inside I was screaming WHAT?!) "You're not letting us be wild and have fun and instead want us to clean." he answered.

I suspect the problem was not turning them into girls but the NOT letting them be wild and have fun part. Nevertheless, after this brief exchange did the lecture on gender equality began. I explained how boys and girls can both do the same things, it doesn't matter if they're a boy or a girl.

It's amazing how children learn from their home life. I'm a stay at home mom, so I do most of the cleaning around here and my husband works. There are things that he does but my boys are usually in school when this happens, so they don't witness it.

I had to calmly explain, albeit I was getting heated, how just because they don't see their dad doing any cleaning around here doesn't mean he doesn't. Also, it's perfectly fine and expected for boys to do cleaning and things he "thinks" only girls do and vice versa. I said girls can be fun and wild too. He said that the girls in his class are not like that. I explained that it's okay because that their choice but, once again, just because he doesn't see it doesn't mean it can't or doesn't happen.

I explained to him what sexism and discrimination is. Yes, that may have been over the top but he's old enough to start understanding what those things are. It was a perfect opportunity to have this conversation and a teachable moment.

All I want for my boys are to be fair, just, honest, trustworthy, loving, kind, respectful and well rounded individuals. I have no doubt that they are well on their way to becoming those individuals. But when I hear those types of comments, I need to make sure that they understand what's okay and what's not. If I allow them to believe that girls and boys can't do the same things, then I am contributing to what's wrong with gender equality in this world today. I don't want them to fall into the mentality that just because they are men and are working, they don't have to contribute to the keeping of the house.

If I had a girl, I would tell her that she can do anything a boy can do. So, why can't I explain to my boys that boys can do anything a girl can do.

I don't consider myself to be a feminist but I do believe that gender equality is important but above that, human equality is most important of all.

I am also linking up on Things I Can't Say Blog on her Pour Your Heart Out Wednesdays. I've done this once before and loved it.

Day 8 of the Ultimate Blog Challenge.


Monday, April 7, 2014

On My Reading List

I'm you're like me, you have a never ending reading list. I'm a book hoarder and I'm proud to say it. I love my books. I love my reading. There's not a day that goes by without me reading, even if it's just one page of a book.

The e-reader and reading apps have been the best inventions ever, for me at least. I have books on my Nook app, my Kindle app, my Google Play Books app, my Aldiko app and other several e-reading apps. It's to the point where I sometimes don't know what to choose to read. Luckily, because I review books, the choice is taken away from me.

Currently, I'm reading Spark by K.C. Stewart.

Copywriter by day, nerd by night, Hailey Holloway is living the post college dream. Her life may not be flashy and exciting but it’s enough for her. After a late night at work, Hailey stumbles upon two Dragons brawling in the middle of Philadelphia. In an act of kindness and lapse of sanity, she comforts the Dragon who was left behind to die. In doing so she inadvertently invited the soul of Dacea into herself for safe keeping. Hailey just wants to live her life as simply and quietly as possible but with the voice of a disembodied Dragon in her head, she has little hope of achieving her goal.

Dacea will do anything to be free of Hailey, a human who is moments from checking herself into a psychiatric ward. He is grateful to be alive, but at what cost to his sanity? The Dragon world is in upheaval. Green is at war with Red, and he is of no use to anyone while stuck with Hailey.

The solution to their problem is not without its risks. But just how far will Hailey go to be free of the Dragon?

Next, I have to Patience by Sydney Lane.

Jenna Ryan is the kind of girl everyone wants for a friend. Her spunky and carefree outlook on life often leads to trouble of the best kind. She's not afraid to speak her mind, and when it comes to her friends, she's fiercely loyal and protective. When she met Eric, she knew immediately he was her forever, but why was he holding back?

Eric James is the epitome of a Greek God. He parties hard while trying to meet the expectations of his overachiever parents. When he met Jenna, sparks flew, and he knew he'd met his match. 

But Eric is hiding a small secret. When Jenna finds out, these two will embark on a wild and hilarious journey to torture each other into submission.

Who will win? And who will learn the true meaning of... Patience?

***Patience is a Jenna and Eric novella with approximately 30k words. It can be read as a stand alone but is much better after reading Choices or Fate.

Spark is a good book so far. I'm really enjoying it. I'll have my review up once I'm done with it.

Patience should be a good book. I've read both Choices (you can read my review of Choices here) and Fate. Both were good stories. So, I'm looking forward to reading Patience.

This blog post is day 7 of the Ultimate Blog Challenge that I'm doing.


Saturday, April 5, 2014

My Child Got Left Behind

My heart plummeted as I yelled out the door "where is Kostas?!" over and over again.

Not a good feeling watching one of your children get off the bus and not seeing the other one. My heart sank. I got scared yet tried not to panic. Not so easy but before the panic starts to set in, I tried to think logically and not think of one of the worst imaginable things: my child being kidnapped. In this day in age, anything is possible.

Let me go back a bit so you can understand what happened. Oh and this all happened in a whirlwind, like everything happened at the same time. As I normally do, every afternoon I wait for my boys to get off the school bus at our front door since the bus stops 3 houses up the street.

This past week, their bus has been later than usual so when 4 pm rolled around, I didn't worry too much. Then 4:15 came and no bus. I called the school but as I'm calling the bus is pulling up so I hang up. I see my oldest get off and start running up the sidewalk with a happy smile on his face cause, after all, it is Friday. Now, it's normal that one of my boys gets off the bus first and the other one gets off the bus last.

In that same moment I see the school is still on the phone. I'm not sure if I hung up or the school called. I say to the receptionist "I was just calling to find out if the buses were delayed because it wasn't here yet but it is now here." That's when I realize the bus starts driving off and my second son is not on the sidewalk. I start yelling "where's Kostas, where's Kostas". The receptionist hears my yelling and asks me my boys' names. When I tell her, she says Kostas is here at the school. I quickly spew out, "I'm coming to get him" and hang up the phone. It seemed rude to do this but in my state of not seeing my child, my brain was not on manners at the moment. My priority was my kid.

So, while Kostas was safe and sound at school, that split second of not seeing him get off the school bus and me not knowing where he was, was enough to cause alarm within my heart and for the worst of things to scroll through my mind.

We did talk to both the boys about doing a checks and balance with each other. If one is not on the bus, the other needs to stand up and say something. This is the first time this happened, so it's a lesson to be learned.

**Day 5 of the Ultimate Blog Challenge.**


Friday, April 4, 2014

Good Marriage Advice for Couples to Consider

While I was browsing through my newsfeed on Facebook yesterday, I came across a video that a friend of mine shared. The video was that of Pope Francis on his advice on marriage. It's good advice regardless of your religious affiliations.

When my husband and I got married, nearly 12 years ago, I don't remember receiving any advice from anyone in regards to marriage. My husband and I knew we were meant to be and decided to get married on a whim. So far, that whim has worked in our favor. I do, however, remember reading and hearing in movies (I know, right) about one thing that every married couple should do. Without putting much thought into it, my husband and I do (not always but we strive to) what Pope Francis has suggested, and what I've read and heard in movies, every night.

In his weekly address, Pope Francis advises couple never to go to bed angry with each other. Always say good night to each other.

I like the message Pope Francis has to give. It's something that we should all strive to do. However, being humans and letting our emotions take over, it is not always so simple. I know. Even though my husband and I rarely argue (and that's mainly because I don't like confrontations) there has been once or twice where things did get really heated between us. Times where we did go to bed with unresolved emotions. However in the end, love transcended any negatives in our marriage. I know this is not the case with every marriage. I will not be so naive to think that love can fix anything because when we have been hurt so deeply and our hearts toyed with, love won't fix it.

But I digress. If you can and are willing to put aside ego and issues, say goodnight before to bed. Let each other know that "even though I'm mad at you and don't like you very much right now, I still love you".

Disclaimer: As the saying goes "No one knows what's in the pot but the one who stirs it." so I will not pretend to be an expert on marriage. I'm just sharing something that has worked for me and my husband. An advice that I think others can benefit from.

This post is part of the Ultimate Blog Challenge.


Thursday, April 3, 2014

That Early Morning Hug

For today's Ultimate Blog Challenge post, I'm keeping it short and sweet, like my youngest son.

A few months ago I wrote about actions speaking louder than words in reference to my youngest son.

This morning, I go to wake him up so that he can have breakfast and get ready for school. He's in pre-kindergarten. He's four years old and what a fun age for him (and me!).  He is the last of the brood and knows it. He plays his role well. But I digress...

As I'm waking him up, I'm kneeling next to his bed and telling him it's time to get up. He rolls over, stretches, in that sweet way which melts your heart and only children know how to do, and once he realizes it's me, he wraps his arms around my neck and doesn't let go.

He hangs on for a few seconds. I cherish those magical seconds because they are fleeting. We all know how quickly we forget things that happens in seconds. We all easily forget things that happen every day in our busy lives. Including those kisses, those hugs, those sounds of joy and laughter.

While my youngest has yet to say those three words, (I know he has them cause he's said them before but he's just playing games with me) I know for a fact that my kid loves me. I might quite possibly be his favorite person in the whole world. I'll work tirelessly to continue being the person he looks up to. He shows me so all the time. This morning was a perfect example.

That sweet, gentle hug that spoke so many words was enough to let me know that he loves me and I love him back.

The point is, if you were looking for one, cherish all those moments for tomorrow is not promised (as cliche as that sounds). Live in the moment and love mightily.

My little boy. He woke up one morning dressed like this. 


Tuesday, April 1, 2014

How Frozen Got Me

I remember when Frozen came out in the theatres. I remember reading posts from friends on Facebook praising the movie and how fantastic it was. I even remember reading a headline, I forget which article and where, that stated how Disney's Frozen is a game changer for Disney Princess's movies. I was curious but not curious enough to go out and see at the theatres.

Fast forward a few months to the release of Frozen on DVD/BluRay. My husband come home one day with the movie in hand. I was pleasantly surprised that he got it since my boys hadn't expressed any interest in seeing it. We normally buy movies that they want. After watching the movie, I was extremely 'elated or gassy' to quote Anna from Frozen that my husband bought the movie.

Like I said before I wanted to see why Frozen was a game changer for Disney Princess's movies. I got my answer after watching it, or at least what I got out of it and what my boys got out of it, even if the original headline meant something different. Yes, there are loads of other lessons to be learned from Frozen which have been blogged about extensively so I won't touch on those. I'll only touch on what was important to me.

I was happy to see that Disney chose to represent an act of true love through the love of a sibling and not through true love's kiss. I love the idea that we can all love one another and commit an act of true love for someone other than your chosen partner in life. I try to teach my boys all the time that they have to love each other, no matter what. I teach them to be respectful to one another and to always be there for each other to lean on. I teach them that while they are times that they will be angry at each other, the love that they have for each other must remain true and at the forefront of their thoughts. Frozen cemented that idea which I teach my boys.

Frozen immediately made my list of favorite Disney movies knocking Beauty and the Beast down a notch. Along with Meet the Robinsons, the lesson it teaches is one that will stay with me forever.

I know that there are things I'm going to get wrong in raising my boys but as long as I continue to love them and show them love, in the end I will get it right. Or semi right. Hey, if they don't end up in therapy as adults, I know I've done a banging job.

Of course, I can't end this post without making a mention of one of my favorite characters in Frozen, Olaf. I absolutely loved him. I loved his innocent spirit full of wisdom. I loved his carefree attitude and outlook on life. He was so determined to see Summer that it didn't matter if he would melt though he didn't know it. I loved him so much that I decided to crochet me an Olaf. He is a work in progress and I will share about him in a later blog post.

This post was written as part of the Ultimate Blog Challenge that I decided to join.

Ultimate Blog Challenge