Wednesday, December 30, 2009

La Reina's 2009 Year End Review

Hello My Readers....
As promised..its midnight....
Below is my Year end Review...hope you all enjoy. Please leave comments and let me know what you think!!!

When the New Year starts to approach; we all begin to make our New Years Resolutions. We think "this is the year we're going to lose those stubborn 15 pounds that we gained last year" or "I'm going to work on my resume and look for a higher paying job" or in my case "This is the year I'm going to finish my book". Well 2009 didn't begin the way that I had hoped and the resolutions that I thought I would be going into the New Year quickly disappeared. I tried to write as much as I could but nothing was worth writing for the book. I did, however, continue to write on blog all that I felt I needed to write. So, then I decided I would write MY Year End Review the way I saw it.

From Beginning to End......

January 2009

I started off the year the most worse possible way I could: With the death of my mother, January 1, 2009. I truly didnt think i could survive this, but with the support of myfamily and my friends, I have been able to walk tall and found a lil more strength I didnt know I even had.

Rest in Peace Mami, you're missed every second, of every minute, of every hour of every day!

February 2009

Ah, February had a highlight, My Sister (not by birth, but definitely by God) Maria was married on February 14, 2009. I was the matron of honour and there has not been a wedding (aside from my own) that had me so emotional as hers did. She looked amazing and looked so very happy. I'm so very happy for her, Pleze and Phoenix...

My New Years Wish for you sis, is that God continue to bless your marriage and family with all the happines you all deserve. Love you!

March 2009, April 2009, May 2009

This was my "New Moon" period (those of you who read the book or saw the movie, know what i mean)...i spent most of this time missing my Mom and sleeping in the family room in hopes that she would appear to me and tell me all would be okay.

Highlight: In March, Mikey turned 6..a blessing for a child to make it to another year!

Not so highlight: Our first Mothers Day without Mom...this was hard....a bit emotional!

June 2009

Seemed half way through the year, it didnt get any better.

Do you all remember where you were when you heard the news of Farrah's and Michael's death? I was at work and couldnt believe the news that we all had heard. I kept looking at my facebook looking for updates and it seemed the entire FB family was just as shocked as I was.

I grew up listening to Michael going back as far as I can remember...a friend put it best:
"Michael, thank you for being part of the soundtrack to my life"
It is still so surreal.

A Fallen King and a Fallen Angel

July 2009

A very Bittersweet month

Paris Jackson, 11, Prince Michael, 12 and Prince Michael II aka "Blanket, 7

We watched Michael Jackson's memorial service as it was televised all over the world, from our very own Los Angeles Staple Center. Listening to the eulogies from Brooke Shields to Rev. Al Sharpton leaving me to remember when the reverend addressed Michael's children as they sat in the front row with their grandmother, aunts and uncles.

He looked at them from the podium and said:

"I want his children to know there was nothing strange about your Daddy, it was strange what your Daddy had to deal with"

Then the inevitable happened; Paris Jackson took the mic and spoke:

"I just wanted to say, ever since I was born, daddy has been the best father you could ever imagine, and I just wanted to say I love him so much."

Even as I write this, my tears are forming, I couldn't imagine my young children living without me.

My New Years wish for the Jackson Children, that they continue to be there for each other. Their father was an amazing humanitarian and hope they follow in those amazing footsteps...moon walk and all; also, I hope that they continue to ignore all the negativity that was said about their father. Like Paris said, Michael was "The best father you could ever imagine"

Rest in Peace Michael!


Then we had the birth of my Michael's Best Friend, Maria Louie.
Here is Ethan, just so adorable...looks just like both is parents.

Congrats Maria & did good!


My brother Sergio is blessed to see his 30th birthday and the first to experience our Mom not being here to celebrate with us. Love you Brother!

August 2009

Aw August....MY BIRTHDAY MONTH...anyone who knows me; knows I celebrate ALL month long!!
However, this birthday was a rough one...not because I was turning 40, but because my Mom didn't survive to see me make it to this milestone.

Here I am holding my Bestest's son, Leo..another great addition to the family. The world could always use another "Leo" in this world. He was born a day before my birthday.
Thank you Bestest...he was truly a great gift!!

BIG Brother & Little Brother
Sam & Leo Lozano
The Lozanos make some good looking babies!


I Make It To 40

As I stated earlier, this one was a rough one. I thought Mothers Day was; if you read my earlier blog from August titled "Four Thirty One" you'll know why.

But...I celebrated it RIGHT...80's style!!!

Here is me and lil brother Frankie

It was my 40th and his 35th, we hadnt celebrated a birthday together since I was 21 and he 16. This was definitley long over due!!

Happy Birthday to us Lil brother...I love you!!

My brothers...nuff said!

My MNF you boyz!!!

September 2009

Another Bittersweet month

My boy Sebastian gets married..he's the first male out of the "circle" to get married. It was an awesome wedding, their wedding vows were...were...i can't even explain. It was about Soul Mates and had my heart skip a beat...Jen and Sebastian still waiting on those. I want to write about them

Annnnd it was at their wedding that a female guest admitted that she had a "girl crush" on me!

Nice! Psh...turning 40 wasn't too bad; I got both sexes thinking I'm cute! WHAT!!??

Love you guys and congrats again!


We lose the man that gave us one of the best quotes:

"No body puts Baby on a corner"

Patrick Swayze lost his battle with Stage IV Pancreatic cancer on September 14,2009.

He will be always remembered for his role as Johnny in "Dirty Dancing" and my favorite,as Sam Wheat in "Ghost"...I always laugh when i think of him singing:

"I'm Henery the Eighth, I am,

Henery the Eighth I am, I am!
I got married to the widow next door,
She'd been married seven times before.
And every one was an Henery
She wouldn't have a Willie or a Sam
I'm her eighth old man named Henery
Henery the Eighth, I am!

Second verse same as the first"

Whoopi's character can not sleep because of this...hilarious!!!

Rest in Peace Patrick!

October 2009

Tragedy hits our family once again.

Four generations of Aviles Men

On October 16, 2009 at 4:20am my Father in Law, Jaime Aviles lost his battle to lung cancer. I thought things couldnt get any worse for our family. Oh! was I mistaken.

His memorial service was probably one of the hardest moments I ever had to sit through.

All the eulogies were spoken and so beautifully written and spoken. Michael's step mother Mary spoke and it had been her words that helped Michael release the pain that he'd been holding in.

Then Michael spoke...I dont think there was a dry eye in the church:

"As you know my dad and I made up, but I never got to say to him what I really wanted to. I always thought my Dad would live forever so I could be mad at him forever, but as you can see thats not the case. If there is anyone that you are not speaking to, please make amends before it is too late"

He was is too short and to live with bitterness in your heart only keeps you from living. Remember forgiveness is never for the person asking for it but for the person giving it. It is only then that you can really accept the blessings that God has in store for you.

An FB friend ends most of his status' with K.L.E.O!!

"Keep Loving Each Other"

Since the funeral, the Aviles Family has made such an effort to be A FAMILY and I am so thankful to be part of it.

Rest in Peace, Pop!


Here are all the characters to my poem:

"My Brothers; My Sons"

There is nothing that these men wouldn't do for me nor I them.

Brothers, though 2009 was a rough one for us, in 2010 we'll be looking to the North because Mom is looking to the South and Blessing us each day!

I love you!


My daughter, Isis was blessed to see her 17th birthday and
My Brother Freddy was blessed to see his 26th birthday day!

Birthdays aren't a curse...they are a blessing, that its another year you get to spend with your loved ones.

Embrace it & Enjoy it! No matter the milestone!


My Baby Girl is Growing Up

My daughter, Isis has announced that by Summer 2011, she will be a resident of New York State. The Empire state is calling one of their own back home.

Her dream is to attend NYU and so she presented us with a agenda planned out so well that we couldnt say "no".

Did I ever tell you all how amazing she is? She's not perfect and I dont think I'd have her any other way.

I've always told everyone that God blessed me so much that He allowed me to give birth to my Best Friend.

She has been my strength when I thought I had none left. My courage when I thought I was took weak to continue.

My light when everything seemed so dim that I couldnt see.

She and I may get into the normal Daughter/Mother spats but we seem to survive them.

Even as we ended October with one of the roughest patches we had ever come across, we managed to pull through it, though not 100%, I'm confidant we will be.

My New Years wish for you Baby Girl: Is that you continue to have the drive and focus that your Nina and I have instilled in you. You're going to be an amazing photo jounalist and we will be beside you every step of the way. And when you think you can't, look to the North and know Grandma is saying: "My I-ziz you can do anything your heart desires!"

I love you!

Remember you ARE the Daughter, Granddaughter & Goddaughter of Reinas and the Daughter of the King of Kings;

The world is yours; all you have to do is go out and claim it!!!

November 2009

Yankees Take number 27

I'm not gonna rub this one in too much.

In the words of Forrest Gump: "That's all I have to say about that!"


My Baby Brother Henry is blessed to see is 19th birthday!!

I love you, Lil Brother!!


2nd Annual Wives Wine Tasting
Temecula, CA

These women are truly amazing.

We decided that every November we will have this outing and the counterparts cant say anything!

We laugh, cry, we laugh so hard that we cry. Sarcasim that we dont even take personal, bubble busting til we glare and then laugh at that. That was in just the first hour!

This trip also showed us that we can have wine with tacos!!! ccchhheeeeoowww!!!

2010....look out Temecula!!!

* You think we'll finally make it to Pechanga...or will we be all talk again?....just asking!

Love you Girls!!!


Ahh, New Moon

This one has woken the 17 year old girl in me. Read that entry and you'll see why.
Sometimes when talking to Michael, I get terrets and yell "Team Edward!"

If you've seen the Burger King commercial, you'll know what I'm talking about.


Aviles Style

Brother in Law Jaime and Sister in Law Lisa

Thanksgiving this year was great. My Brother in law and his wife hosted Thanksgiving dinner. My sister in law, a vegetarian by the way, cooked her first turkey.

Considering it was her first time cooking one, she did great, even cooking the bag with the liver and neck (you know the bag you're suppose to take OUT of the turkey before you start stuffing and cooking it?) Since she's a vegetarian she was NOT about to stick her hand inside any bird no matter the cause.

I told her, "Don't worry Sis, it gave the bird an extra KICK"

By the way...the turkey was YUMMY!

(Her homemade stuffin was my favorite, Isis' was Mary's Three Bean casserole...YUM)

December 2009

Our 4th Annual Christmas Party

This years Group Shot

What can I say about this party. No matter what has happened to us all year long; we always make sure that our annual party continues as planned.

This year the weather wasnt too nice, it rained alot, causing quite a bit of friends unable to make it. Highlight was our families were there and it was a great PARTY.

This year we had a visit from the Jolly man, himself and the kids had a ball.

What will next year bring us? Can't wait!!


Annual Company Christmas Party

Do I really need to say anything about this?

The Bosses rented out the House of Blues and Quest Crew performed.

I had flashbacks of my Fly Girl auditions days (Damn that J-Lo)

One term: "I'm with the band!"

Another young Hollywood leaves us too soon.

Brittany Murphy dies of cardiac age 32!

All I can ask is, "Why?"

My favorite scene from Clueless..she gets hit in the head with a shoe and her crush tries to revive her and ask can she do that wormy thing with her arm while singing:

"Rolling with the homies"

Another one gone too soon.

Rest in Peace Brittany!

Christmas Eve

Lazcano Style

The Cowboy Fans in the family luckily Michael doesn't
hold this against me.

Christmas Eve was nice we spent the first part of the evening at the Medinas..Girls we rule at Guesstures!!! Comadre Lupe's pozole was on point..YUM!

The second part if the evening we went to Brother Frankie's. He and Tiffany hosted us this year and we had a ball!!!

However, two brothers were missing so I know 2010 we'll all be together!


Christmas Day

The Aviles Way

That's right, we have the yule tide log and Christmas music playing while we opened our gifts.

The winning gift this season was:

The Snuggie!!!

Michael and Mikey recieved matching Snuggies.

Michael blessed the family like a monk would (cuz he looked like a monk)

Mikey showed us how the Snuggie is nothing but a backwards robe

and the creator has made millions!

Bet he was drunk he came up with the idea...didnt even realize he had his robe on backwards.

American inventors...go figure!

Oh and they make it for DOGS!!! WTH!!?? There is only one dog out there that I am aware of whose Mama got him one *cough* *cough* MAX!!!


A Phoenix rises from the Ashes and Soars

Though the kids lost their Grandmother New Years Day and have another one the 3000 miles
away. They found a Grandmother in Michael's Step Mother, Mary.

Mary, I want to thank you for helping making this Christmas memorable for the kids and having me realize how much we missed in the past years. I look forward to so much more celebrations with the Family.

The Family gift exchange was soo much fun...rule for 2010...NO DIGITAL FRAMES!!

I believe we counted four total. May not seem like alot to those of you reading, but when 18 people are is!

My highlight: I learned that my digital camera has a "smile" feature...yeah you read right..

S-M-I-L-E Feature.

What does this mean? Well it means that if i set that feature on, my camera will automatically take pictures of people smiling. Well....actually only people that have recognizable smiles..well...apparently Michael, Geli, Danielle nor myself...have a recognizable you know what...forget that feature, i'm not gonna use it.

Never mind....Next highlight!

Mikey's highlight was the boat cruise that Mary's brother, Izzy took us on.

Good times and lots of laughs!

Thanks Aviles and Silva Family


Happy New Year!

One Way...

The Only Way...

The Aviles Way....

Theee Yankee Way!!!

Yeah, I know I said I wasn't gonna rub it in...but that's what New Years resolutions are for, right?

"I promise not to rub salt in an open wound..."

Now..until Midnight...


These past 365 days I found a whole new level of strength I never realized I had.

This year was definitely a trying one for us, especially for myself. In a year I went from being just a mother, sister, daughter to thee matriarch of the family. This role is not easy.

Through Courage, I've grabbed the bull by the horns and ran with it.

I've not only had to continue to encourage my own family but also my brothers. I've had to show them that there are endless possibilities for them to succeed but they need to believe in themselves to obtain it as much as I do.

I learned that no matter how bad a relationship may be, ie.. friends, family, co-workers, nothing is ever broken only bent. You'd just have to have the faith that you can help straighten it out.

I also learned that though we loss the ones we loved this year...I'm comforted in knowing that we have extra Angels looking over us in every step of our journey until the time comes when we'll all be reunited.

My Reinas have showed me that no matter what happens to us in life, that the true Reinas stand by you with no judgements and ready to help lift you when we've fallen.

2010 will be the Year of the Reina Movement.

Remember Reinas, it all begins with us!!!

Pay it Forward!

My New Years wish for all of you:

"May you continue to fill your heart with love, faith, hope and compassion for one another and be ready to take on what ever challenges may come your way, because with THAT in your heart you'll be able to fight it and survive it!"

Besos y Abrazos!!

2010, your sister 2009 tried to break me, she didnt succeed. Whatever you have in store for me and mine...i'm ready for in the words of all my Reinas,

"BRANG IT!!!!"

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Being 17 through 40 year old eyes

Like every other teenage girl out in the "Twilight" world, I and along with my family went to see New Moon this past weekend. My daughter had read some of the series and was trying to catch me up to the characters. She had read Twilight completely and was a bit disappointed that the movie didn't depict the movie in its entirety. (but..screenplays made from books rarely ever do....THATS way too much movie, so lots of cuts had to be made)

I remember watching Twilight when it was first released...reminded me so much a Romeo and Juliette. Two people from different worlds trying not to fall in love but happens anyway...a true love tragedy.

Before seeing New Moon, we rented Twilight again to remember the storyline. I didn't read the book (which I will be after seeing New Moon) if I had, everything would have remained more vivid in my memory. There is something about reading books that allows your imagination to form the pictures that the writer had described to you in black and white. I suppose this is why my daughter was not too happy with Twilight, after she read the book, she had a completely different image of Edward than that of Robert Pattinson and you see for that I am reading the series, I see no other image but Robert Pattinson as Edward. Go figure.

Let me continue, so watching Twilight unlocked that 17 year old young girl in my soul. She had been asleep and seeing this love story unfold had awoken her. My heart began to flutter when Bella notices Edward watching her, or began to ache when he would shun her, then melt when he tells her, "Bella you are my world".

Being a writer I wanted to know more about its author, Stephanie Meyer and so i began to do research on her. I came across her website and there she tells the story about the conceptions of Edward and Bell and how they came to be....all from a dream. She goes on to speak of the leak of her 5th book of the series, Midnight Sun...Twilight through Edward's eyes. Very disappointed she was, violated she felt...she trusted someone with her work and they betrayed odd as it may be...I under stand why she stopped writing the manuscript. I just hope she finishes it.

I started the skim through the manuscript and decided to read it. Ah...can I just tell you that my 17 year old self as fallen in love with this character. He speaks of his forbidden love for "her" and how challanging it is to love "her" when he knows his instinct told him to kill her. How he describes "her" sleeping when he sneaks into her room. When he first finds out that he will fall in love with "her"..through Alice of upset he was...because how can a human love a vampire?

We think of our real lives when two people meet from different side of the tracks. How can a rich boy love the pauper girl. Or the street wise guy with no book smarts fall for a scholar. Happens alot and you never know the trial and tribulations that the relationship suffers unless you're in it. This book brings the reader in it.

I downloaded a version of "Bella's Lullaby", my daughter says it's not the one used in the movie; I began listening to it while i just so happen to be in the section in the book where Edward begins composing the piece. The two together (listening and reading) made the chapter come more alive and my heart began to skip a beat. The seventeen year old in me began to sway with her eyes closed...with each strike of the keys she felt the love more and more and began to dance as if no one was watching...but I was there to feel it all. That lullaby has become part of my meditation before i begin to write....such an amazing piece.

At this age...yes 40, we're expected to be this refined woman, a responsibile woman, a no non-sense woman, not be a giddy school girl or one that takes life on a whim. However, its this young seventeen year old girl that keeps me alive and there are very few occasions that she comes out to play. Reading this series will keep her more alive now than when she actually was all those years ago.

Ladies, never forget your seventeen year old selves, they need to be let out from time to time, to keep YOUR spark alive.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

A Love Note to My Past

A Love Note to My Past

Dear You,

I opened the book and see you looking back at me.
Looking at you has brought back so much memories
I remember us walking to the local parties
Thinking, “I can’t wait to see who will meet me”

Waking up late for school and running out the house.
Being upset, looking down, “Damn, I wore the wrong blouse.”
The Agua Net cans was purchased in cases
The breakers wore sweat suits and Adidas’with no shoe laces.

Back then, we fell hard for another’s mate.
Seeing them together, filled was with hate.
Now, all grown up we have our own
Hoping that Karma won’t claim a debt owed.

The Society of Secrecy, kept our bond tight.
Wishing that one wouldn’t slip due to a bad fight.
We held on to all that was shared and said.
Even the worst of them all, that has us cry ourselves to bed.

The anger with the parentals grew each day.
Wishing that our “real” family would come take us away.
The pain had stricken every part of our being
“You will be repaid in the end?” we were told.
We wanted to know, “what were they seeing?”

I wanted to embrace you close and tight.
Letting you know that all will be alright.
The harder I told you all would be okay
The further and further you slipped away

We wrote love letters from the depth of our heart
Even wrote the letter that ripped our soul apart.
I never thought we’d make that era out alive
But look at us now, ready to hit the world and thrive.

Love Always, Me

Thursday, October 29, 2009

We shall Weather the Storm

“No weapon formed against me shall prosper” Isaiah 54:17

We’ve all heard the saying, “when it rains it pours”. Well…right now this is what is happening to us. We are, what we feel is, in the eye of the storm. Remember when I told you all, I started the year the worse possible way…losing my mother, therefore things can only go up? Boy was I wrong…it just keeps getting worse.

I don’t need to go into details on what going on, just that it seems like im getting ripped in every direction and when I look in the mirror, I have no idea who is looking back at me.

I want to see that strong woman:
The wife that stands by her husband in times of need and tells him,
“Papi, I stand by you no matter what.”
The friend that tells her friend
“Don’t worry Reina, we’ll get through it together”.
The sister that tells her brothers
“Theres nothing that we as a family cant handle”.
The mother that tells her children,
“Babies, dream big, the world is yours, all you have to do is go out and claim it”

Where is she? Have I lost her?

Its times like this that Im missing my mother more and more. Not that she could take the problems away, but she’d at least make her meatloaf and tell me, “Baby, its going to be okay”. Deep down I’d have a hard time believing that , but for that brief moment while eating,
I can believe.

The other day my daughter comes out of her room and finds me crying on the sofa. She asks, “Mommy you okay”. I couldn’t even lie to her and say everything was fine. I just told her things are lil rough, but not worry, I’ll work through them as I always have. She kisses me on the forehead, says she loves me and goes to bed.

Two minutes later I get a text from her,
“God doesn’t give you more than you can handle Mommy”

Isn’t she amazing?….only 17.

I sat there looking at the text and cried harder. I needed to remember that, He doesn’t give me more than I can handle, I just have to remember to stop, look up and ask for help.

I refuse to sit and act like a victim…because I’m not, nor will I ever be.

I’m writing this not for sympathy, but only because even the strongest of women have their moments and well…I’m having mine.

Its just so crazy how your life can change within seconds.

Readers, go through life eyes wide open; you could be blindsided and feel like you’re world is coming to an end if you don’t.

The Game of Life

The Game of Life

I thought I would be okay
If you and I decided to go
Our separate ways
The thought of us apart
Is a stingy pain to my heart

Life truly is like a baseball game:

Through the years we stood at the plate
We had a strong stance as life threw us
Every type of ball known to the game.

The pitcher is life, ready to throw at us
All that its got; in hopes of striking us out.
Our coach is God giving us the signals
Telling us what we should and should not swing at.

There are times we don’t listen
We get lucky and get a hit
We’re confident that we could do this
Without any coaching involved

Until life throws us an unexpected curve ball
We strike out standing.
God gave us the signals to be ready for anything
But our arrogance got the best of us and here we stand.

We’re reminded we’re a team
That you and I must bring this team to victory
With lack of communication and trust
We’re sure headed for a bust.

Maybe it has been too much to bare
We assumed we could handle it all
If one of us got more hits
We’d be able to survive another game.

We thought surviving on one of us playing
Was enough to make the win the same
Come to find out that that too would be too much for one;
Just to watch the bitterness grow until one of us is done

On the surface, like A-Rod and Jeter,
we’re every ones favorite
Below what they don’t see is all the resentment
Just when we thought we could breath with a lead
Life yet again, throws a curve ball that could only mean defeat.

I close my eyes to remember all that’s good:
The hits, the walks and the homeruns
The tears begin to fall like I thought they never could
My heart beats faster and the pain begins to set in
“When did it all go wrong?” is what I begin to think.

I must admit, I have contributed to this as well.
Had I been a better teammate and listen to what was said
Instead of hearing the rambling that was translated
in my head
Maybe, just maybe instead of taking those balls as a walk,
we could’ve hit the curve balls out the park.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

My Brothers, My Sons

"There is a little boy inside the man who is my brother. Oh, how I hated that little boy and Oh, how I love him too." -Anna Quindlan

My Brothers, My Sons

We came from the womb of a Queen.
I was five when the first of you arrived
She handed you to me and said “This is your gift’
I held you tight with all my might
I knew I always wanted to take care of you.

I was away when the second one arrived
I ran home and couldn’t wait to see you
She handed you to me and said “He will care for you”
I looked at you with such amazement
And knew I was blessed to have you too.

I was angry when the third one came
Everyone told me I’d no longer be the only Princess
That God was going to give the family another
I couldn’t look at our Queen; as she carried you
You were going to replace me and I was upset
The day you were another prince.
She handed you to me and said “ You didn’t like him., but you’ll love him”
I looked down at you and forgave myself for not
Wanting you.

The twist and turns that life had given our family
Had fate take over and turned a cousin into a brother.
The love that family has will never break the bonds
That we all have begun to share.

I was an adult when the fourth was announced.
This time I was okay if I had to share the throne.
However, again fate had a different plan for she would be a he.
She handed you to me and said, “He will complete you all”
I looked down at you and my heart open up more.
I knew I would love you just as much as the ones before.

I watch you all grow from infants to men
I was there to protect you from punishments
But the first to scold you when you all behaved wrong.
God had given you all to me as my brothers.
Who would love me, defend me, care for me, fight with me,
Argue with me, be scared of me, confide in me and cry with me.

Yes, you’re my Brothers but my Heart says…You’re my Sons!!

* I wrote this thinking of all my brothers and the challenges I face being the new head of the Family...the Martriarch if you will. Brothers, I love are my brothers; my sons!!!

Always remember:

"I (You) can do all things through Christ who strengthens me (you)" (Philippians 4:13)

Thursday, October 22, 2009


*Below is the eulogy I hope to read at my Father in law's memorial service.

Jaime Aviles
Gone but never Forgotten

I knew I wanted to write about Jaime's final days but I didn't think of turning it into a eulogy until I was at the book store on Saturday. Mitch Alboum , an author Jaime once recommended, wrote a new book 'have a little faith' I was thinking of Jaime when I picked it up..I turned the book around to read what it was about and the first thing I read was....

'In the beginning, there was a question 'will you write my eulogy?" ...I thought I was being asked a favor..Actually I was being given one...."

At that moment I felt as if Jaime was asking me the question, so what was once going be a countdown to his final days has turned into an accounting of how he lived!

When I started writing this I had stopped for a moment; I didn’t know how to begin. So, I turned to Jaime for guidance, 'Pop, help me write your eulogy' I asked, then the strangest thing happened; my blkberry started to vibrate, I looked at it and my facebook notification had appeared; when I opened it, it said 'James Aviles accepted u as a friend'

"James Aviles accepted u as a friend", I repeated to myself. I smiled, looked up and said thank you.

I needed to be reminded that I am writing this not from a daughter in laws perspective but that of a friend.

So I began:

Today we’re here not to mourn Jaime's death, but to celebrate this man’s life. He is survived as u all may know by his three children, Michael, James and Joy, his grandchildren Mikey, Kaila, Kylie and a stepgranddaughter, Isis.

This man LIVED, he loved life and wanted to share it with anyone that came across his path. Anything new, if he was intrigued with it, he wanted to be part of it.....

I remember when I first met Michael, I had just ended a bad relationship n my view of men was 'that they lacked a chromosome called 'ability to tell the truth' ' so when Michael talked about his father once being a teacher, post office worker, dhl delivery guy, owned a liquor store and was an FBI agent...I thought to myself "everything seems somewhat believable..but an FBI agent, hardly! Guys would lie about anything to get another date." I thought Michael was cute so I continued to date him and figured I’d let the lie about his dad and his imaginary jobs wasn't until a year later...I would stand to be corrected. I took my first family trip with the Aviles' and was about to meet the Matriarch and Patriarch of the Family, Carmen n Jaime. Being the family historian myself I was taken in by all the family pictures that Carmen had all over the house and then I saw 'IT'..a picture that the FBI takes of their agents; it documents their name, agent I.D. number and division they worked..I read it..Name: Aviles, Jaime..ID Number: Don’t remember it Division: Undercover...I was thrown back...he REALLY was an employee of the FBI..I turned to Michael..'Your dad was really an FBI agent?” He turned to me 'I told u that when we started dating. 'Yeah I know but I didn't think u were serious.' 'Why would I lie about something like that? he answered...I keep quiet..and since that day, I never questioned anything Michael ever told me.

That was an amazing trip; it set the standard for all trips to follow and I thank them for that.

Later Jaime would add on, mentor, friend, confidant to his list of duties... truly becoming the epitome of the term 'a jack of all trades' and that was just year one with this family.

Through the years, I was able to see him interact with various people from different walks of life; he never once treated them any different from one another and they loved him for that. There are a lot of you here that feel in debted to him, trust me when I tell u..he knew this and was pleased to know that he help shape your life in one way or another.

As his health continued to get the best of him I needed the answers to two questions I wanted to ask before it was too late. We went to see him in the hospital..he was still coherent enough to have a conversation. He held my hand and thanked me for coming...I told him "no need to thank me.. 10 years ago you became my dad, too when I became part of this of course I'd be here", he smiled and began to tear up (if u knew our history u would understand why) so I proceeded to ask my questions:

Pop, if there is one thing to could tell your grandchildren, what would it be?...he paused for a moment and started to answer.."My grandchildren? They're beautiful aren't they...?" Yes they are..." "I would want my grandchildren to know how amazing their great grandparents are and if they could; they would give them the world..will u tell them that?" Yes, Pop..I make sure to tell them"

Final question, If you could tell your children one thing, what would it be, "my children?...well tell Jaime Jr..I named him Jaime not James...tell them I love them very much and that I will always take care of them even when they think I'm long gone...will you tell them that?" Yes, Pop, I'll tell them. "

My vision of heaven consist of history's music greats joining in for one huge jam session and everyone dancing like no one is watching:

I lost my mother New Years day this year..its been a rough year for us..but it brings me comfort to know that My Mom, is showing Pop how to dance a good cumbia and Pop in turn is showing her what a smooth merengue move looks like.. And judging the two; none other than Abuelo Ismael himself, though u would think he'd be a bit biased to the merengue don't under estimate my Mami...she had some amazing legs, especially when she danced.

You know, Forgiveness is a funny thing; some people think it’s to give requestor peace, when in actuality it’s more for the person giving it. When u truly are able to forgive with your whole heart; it’s only then that you open yourself to all the fruits that God has to offer. It is because of this, that I was able to open my heart and let the words flow as God had intended them to be. For that I am truly grateful.

In closing; there are few things I want to share that I will miss about Pop:

His mouth watering Pernil (no one can compare)

His coquito (ernest we thank God you were able to get the recipe, before it was forever lost)

His love of cologne (well…his technique for applying it that is; we always knew how to track his steps or where he’s been by the scent)

His driving (Michael could always tell if it was his father driving by the drivers swerving back in forth in the lanes)

His love of reading (it was Pop that turned me on to my favorite author; one I hope to work with one day, thank u Pop)

His stressing higher education (he would always say, keep your mind working, read, take a class, you're never too old to go back to school)

And Finally, his unique way of leaving a voicemail for his son: Hello Michael this is your father speaking (it was always as if he thought we never recognized his voice when he'd call to speak to him)

He will be forever missed but never forgotten

Monday, September 28, 2009

MJ saves a Country Boy

I know this entry is long over due. I should have entered this on June 25, 2009. When the world heard the news:

On June 25, 2009 at 2:26pm the King of Pop has died.

It was definitley a sad day in music around the world. His music will live on forever and in our hearts.

I did write this the day after his death when I was telling my children how Michael Jackson has influence the way music videos are done now. If it weren't for Michael, there would be no dancing, he had taken music video to levels that no musician had ever dared to go.

How he affected the lives of many people; some known and some that no one ever notices.

I went on to tell them the story of a transfer student when I was in high school.

Its been over 20 years and I can still remember when the transfer kid came to our school. He was this blond hair, blue eyed Iowa boy who was very shy, quiet and kept to himself. He was definitely the type of kid that would be a target for the school bullies. His attire was that of a straight up country boy; plaid shirt, denim jeans and work boots. We could all picture him working the fields on a farm, chasing pigs, milking cows and stacking hay. He even spoke with a country "twang" and used "Ya'll" alot. He walked around is new environment as if he'd just stepped out onto another planet. From the eyes of a country boy and seeing a beach city school like ours for the first time, i could understand why. Our school was like a scene from "Fast Times at Ridgemont High". But that all changed when Michael Jackson gave him confidence to walk around school with his held up high. It was the day he showed up to school with his red leather zippered out jacket, you know the one...the one from "Beat It". Not very much kids had the jacket and I can recall when the toughest break dancin' crew on campus went up to him, everyone thought, 'this poor kid is about to get thrown in a trash can', but instead, one of the breakers extended his to him and said, 'Great jacket man". Michael changed this kid's life in way he'd never know, had it not been for that jacket that poor Iowa boy probably would have had a horrible time in our typical Southern California high school.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

You Jumped Too Far!

Years ago there was a Lifetime-ish type of movie I saw. Something about it, after all these years, always has me reference back to it when I talk to my friends or family. I'm going to try to remember as much as I can and what I can't...I'll make up along the way.

It was about a couple whose 20 year wedding anniversay was coming up. The wife was elated and couldn't believe that 20 years had already gone by.

However, she started to notice her husband wasn't being his normal self; he had been very distant and didnt talk much after work. She would notice that he would disappear after receiving phone calls and was very short when asked where he was going. This of course had her very curious; he's never been secretive about his actions.

One day she decides to follow him to see where he'd disappeared to. Trying to play her best spy role, she tries to stay few cars behind him so he wouldn't notice her. She sees him pull up to their frequented restaurant (she smiles, it was there that he had asked her to marry him a lil over 20 years ago), he valets the car and then a stunning brunette greets him at the door and she sees him; kisses her on the cheek and they proceed inside the restaurant. The wife stunned leaves the area and heads home. She believe there is a logical explanation; maybe a client? She decides to wait til her husband comes home as ask him.

About two hours later she hears the door open and she puts on a front as if she had been in the kitchen. "Honey, you're home?" she says acting surprised.

He doesnt make much eye contact, "Uh yeah...I'm beat" he says.

"Oh , I wondered what happened, the phone rang and then you left without saying anything, who was it, everything okay?" She asked trying to make eye contact with him.

"Oh yeah, that, it was Phil from the office, he had a question about a proposal that is due on Monday. So instead of going through it on the phone with him, I went into the office, everythings fine." He said while he was flipping through the mail.

She couldnt believe he just straight out lied to her. She was so shocked at the thought of her husband lying to her.

A few days go by and she gets a call from her husband letting her know that he'll be home late from work and if she could keep his dinner warm.

She decides to follow him again, She drives to his office and waits for him to leave the building. Looking at her watch; she sees her husband's car leave the garage and proceeds to follow him, this time she was more stunned than the first time. He drives to one of the most elite hotels in the city and waiting for him out front was the same woman from the restaurant.

Distraught, the wife decides to get off the car and confront the husband and the mysterious woman. She walks in the lobby looks around and sees them at the front desk and sees the clerk hand them what looks like a key and point to the elevator. The wife just froze she couldnt move. All she kep thinking was "Our 20 year wedding anniversay is this weekend and he decides to start an after 20 years!!"

She heads back to her home contemplating how to handle the situation. Her emotions start to overcome her and the only that came to her mind was.. revenge. That's how she'll handle this...she remembers a saying ..."revenge is best served cold". So, cold it shall be served...he wont know what hit him.

The day of her anniversary, still upset, she decides to go have "me time" and re-evaluate her 20 year old marriage. She stops at a local pub and decides to go in have a drink. She orders her drink and starts the re-evaluation..."How did we get here?" she tells herself. " I thought we were happy, yeah, we had some rough times along the way, but i thought we made it through them fine..why would he do this?" She looks at her reflection in the mirror behind the bar and sees her 45 year old self looking back and she reminds herself of the mysterious woman her husband is having the affair with. She was very beautiful. Late 20's early 30's, brunette with long waving hair, an amazing figure...(probably doesnt have any kids with a body like that) she is getting herself all worked up with anger again, a gentleman, very distinguished with a British accent approaches her at the bar.

"Hello, may I buy you a drink" he asks with that Remington Steele accent of his.

She gives a coy smile and accepts. The cold dish has arrived.

An hour of talking had passed and they leave together; she ends up having sex with him and regrets it immediately. She grabs her items and runs out the room.

She gets to her car and begins to break down..."What have I done!?" she yells to herself.

She gets home and wants to change right away, but as soon as she opens the door, she is startled by her husband who is there, waiting.

"Where have you been? I've been here waiting for you. Did you forget we had reservations at the restaurant?" he asks sounding annoyed.

Then she remembered he made reservations for their anniversary at an exclusive restaurant that has a year long waiting list.

On their previous anniversary she told him how she would love to eat at that restaurant one day. She remembers how excited she was when he told her that he was taking her there for their 20th wedding anniversary. Wow! how the dynamics of a relationship can change.

She decides to pretend for the night and then she'll talk to him about a divorce tomorrow.

She tries to go upstairs to change and then he stops her, "Where are you going?" he says sounding irritated.

In a calm voice, she replies, "Upstairs to change" she looks down at herself and looks at what she is wearing, "I feel under dressed for that place" but the real reason was she still had the smell of her mistake on her and wanted to wash it off immediatley.

"There's no time, you look fine" he says, "We've been on this list for a year and if we're late they're going to give our table away, grab your stuff" he sounding more annoyed with every word.

She gives up and gets in the car; she doesn't say much on the way to the restaurant. On route to it they pass the restaurant where she first sees her husband and the mysterious woman and she gets queezy.

Then her husband breaks the silence. "Damn!" he yells.

"What?" she questions.

He replies, "I forgot i needed to see a client to give him the projections for his company, i was caught up waiting for you, that i completely forgot and he has an early AM flight. Damn!"

Not really in the mood to have this anniversary dinner, she tells him, "You have the projections with you?"

He nods and points to the back seat. She looks back and sees the envelope.

"Well, looks like we still have some time, is it on our way?" she asks.

Again he nods and says "Yeah, he staying at the Grand Marquis, do you mind?"

Her stomach is beginning to get real upset when she hears "The Grand Marquis"...that was the hotel she followed her husband and his mistress to. She wanted to say "Hell no"..but she wasnt ready to say anything to him just yet, so she agrees.

They park in the garage, she tells her husband she'll wait in the car.

He looks at her puzzled, "Dont be silly, first of all, its hot down here and secondly, I dont know what room he is in so it may take a while, come on". He grabs the projections and goes to her side of the car to open the door for her.

Feeling against her will; she gets out of the car and follows him to the hotel.

They arrive in the lobby and she looks around the hotel, this is a truly magnificant hotel. In the lobby is a huge opera like chandelier, crimson red carpet, chaise lounges positioned strategically throughout the lobby; you feel like royalty when you step through the doors. Although, thats not how she felt the first time she entered through those doors.

She and her husband walk up the counter, he asks, "Yes, Im here to see Mr. Walker. He's expecting me."

The young lady smiles at both of them, and replies, "Yes Sir, he called down and informed us of your arrival, please take the elevator on the left to the 2nd floor, once the doors open; his suite is directly in front; the one with double doors."

He smiles back and says "Thank you".

She and her husband do as the clerk instruct. As they are in the elevator she feels as if she wants to throw up, visons of her husband making love to this woman is driving her crazy. The elevator doors open and as the young clerk stated the suite with the double doors were in front.

Her husband knocks on the door and they hear a faint, "Come in". He opens the door and its extremely dark and then all of a sudden all the lights flash on and a loud "Surprise!" roars through the room.

She looks around the room and its a ball room that is decorated for a celebration, on one of the walls there is a sign that says, "Happy 20th Wedding Anniversary". She looks into the crowd and sees all her family members, his co-workers, and then she sees HER.

The husband gives her a kiss and hug. keeping her in his embrace.

He looks down at her overjoyed he asks, "Honey, are you surprised? You have no idea how hard it was to keep this from you. Let me introduce to the coordinator, she did an amazing job..." He looks towards the myterious woman, " Sheila," He motions for her to come over.

"Hello, its so nice to finally meet you." Sheila extends her hand to her and she is introduced.

Sheila goes on to tell her, "Your husband wanted everything to be perfect for you, he even had the restaurant, that he proposed to you at, cater the event. Let me tell you that was a feat in itself. When i called to request that they cater, the owner said they do not cater any events. I had to call your husband and have him meet me there and explain to the owner how important this was. You truly have a devoted husband."

She feels her walls coming crashing in and in a low voice to her husband she, says, "you should have told me."

Her husband smiling, says, "what? tell you? I wanted it to be a surprise".

She looks into the crowd and sees her best friends, and she tells them "you should have told me"
One of them answers, "don't look at us, we were just as surprised as you when we were told to meet at this address"

Her husband interjects and says, "are you kiddin? if i told any of them it wouldnt have been a surprise. You're surprised! I could see it" smiling, knowing that he just conquered what seemed impossible to do.

He then shouts into the crowd, "You see everyone I told you she'd be surprised, this has to the first time in 20 years that she is speechless, i did real good!!"

Everyone cheered him on and she is trying to stop him from his excitement.
"Stop...please stop.. you should have told me," she continues in a low voice so no one can hear her.

"What are you talking about?" he says.

Then she proceeds to tell him what she percieved.

"I..I were distant, not saying much, when i asked questions you were short" she begins to explain.

" well, was all part of the surprise, i had to keep it from you; just didn't think i did that great of a job." he says has he hugs her tighter.

"Then I...followed you to the restaurant...i saw Sheila..but didnt think a whole lot about it...but then i followed you again and I saw you meet her in the lobby.. here, at this hotel...and .." She's feeling so overwhelmed as the words are leaving her mouth; she slowly tries to loosen his clasp.

Her husband now goes from a look of excitement to one of being concerned.

"Go on..." he says as he pulls away from the embrace.

"And...i thought...i thought you were having an should have told me!" She cries.

The husband with a look of disgust says, "what did you do?"

She kept saying, "you should have told me!"

The husband then grabs her by both arms, and begins to shout, "WHAT THE HELL DID YOU DO!!!!"

"I cheated on you today" she cries.

He lets her go and she drops to her knees.

He starts to walk away from her but before he leaves, he turns back to her and says,

"For 20 twenty years I have done nothing but try to make you happy. I have given you everything your hearts content. I thought we were happy. Every morning i would wake up and thank God that He made YOU for ME. This morning I especially thanked Him, that He had blessed us to make it to 20 years and that I was more in love with you today than when i proposed to you at that restaurant 20 years ago; something i didnt think would be possible. You were my best friend, I thought you wanted to grow old with me. I thought we would retire in Venice; like we always talked about. I never decieved you. All you had to do was come talk to me. All you had to do was tell me what was going through your mind. I would have told you about the surprise; i would rather you know about the party than you thinking I betrayed you. For 20 years i gave you my all, why would you automatically believe that I would do something so reprehensible as cheat on you?"

Then he dropped the envelope,that had what she though was the projections, on her lap. She opened it and saw that it was a deed to a villa in Venice in both their names with a note that said,

"20 years and still going strong...ready to retire with me in Venice? Happy Anniversary, I love you"

****I hope this reminds alot of you to ask questions before assuming the worse. You'll be able to save yourself a lot of heartache if you know exactly what you need answered before you've jumped too far!

Sunday, September 06, 2009

Chicana Artist-Margaret Garcia

"Comida de Verano"

The Insight to my Childhood

On August 29th, 2009, my friend Roberto invited me to go to a gallery showing of one of his Artist at his gallery in Los Angeles. I hadnt been to a gallery opening in years and thought I needed to get out more and open my self to new things.

When I turned 40, I told myself I would try new adventures and then write about what I had experienced. So luckily, Roberto invited me while I made this new pact to myself.

The name of the artist was Margaret Garcia and her showing was called, "Second Sight". I was in awe when I saw the paintings. The use of color was so amazing; it took me back to my childhood.

Walking throughout the gallery I saw several pictures that surfaced so many memories and emotions. The picture above, I knew I was meant to see, especially when I saw that the name of the painting was "Sergio". It reminded me of my own brother, Sergio. I look at the painting of this young boy who has so much promise and potential, unfortunately, he doesn't believe it.
I look into his dark black eyes and I see the same look that my own brother gives me. Instead of seeing hope and faith; I see despair and pain. As a big sister, the last thing I'd ever want for any of my brothers to feel is...pain; I didn't know how to relieve it.

If this painting had me feeling like this straight out the box, what were the other going to do to me? Looking around the gallery; I was about to find out.


The painting above reminded me when we were kids and we would go to Baja to visit family. The local restraunts had hostess' dress in long red dresses with a rose in their hair. Seeing this picture took me right back to that time. Seeing the "nopales"..the cactus... in the picture reminded me when my Mom and I would talk about certain people and I'd say, "they say their not Mexican" and she'd reply, "Psh...por favor ("Pa-lease"), not Mexican, you can see the pinchi nopal on their forehead"...which was a saying she and my Tias would use when someone tried to deny their Mexican heritage. She said the nopal (cactus) was a symbol of our Mexican heritage. Seeing those cactus' just made me laugh to myself as I remembered those several conversations; and how much I missed her.

"Melissa con Almohada"

This one made me feel secured. I thought back to being a child and feeling bad or hurt and finding comfort in my pillow. The pillow was my held my tears when i would cry, my teeth marks when I was angry and couldn't release it any other way. The pillow would listen to me when i needed to speak or yell and the pillow would never talk back. And if it did, I would have been checked into a hospital for not being in my right mind...(*giggle). The other day I was watching Jennifer Garner in "13 going on 30", you know the one, where she plays a 13 year old who wishes she was 30 and wakes up to her wish coming true, but freaks out when she finds out her male best friend and she are no longer friends...she asks for water and a big fluffy pillow. The feeling she felt holding the pillow was that of "Melissa and her almohada"...comfort and security.


This one above didnt have a name, this is why I named it "unknown". She was so beautiful; she reminded me of the murals that the neighborhood homeboys would have painted on their Monte Carlos and Cadillacs. Looking at her, I thought this is what a "Latin Queen" looked like; what my Mother looked like in heaven.

About Me

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I'm a writer that writes from the heart...and emotion (ergo, the name of my blog). Most of what I write about, I have had first hand experience in. Anything I review does not say I am an expert...I only write what I THINK and whether I like it or not! Not how the rest of the world should think or feel. I am Mexican/Italian and a Leo..again..why my blog is called the World of Emotion!! Hope you enjoy what I have to say and/or review. Enjoy!