The Queen: Michelle

The Queen: Michelle
I am 28 years old. Still a princess but the queen of my family. Spoiled beyond belief. Lucky and truely blessed. A lover. A crafter. A mother. A wife. A friend. This is me.

My King: Junior

My King: Junior
The LOVE of my life! He completes me and balances me out in every way. He's a workaholic. He's loud, blunt, and crazy. He drinks Monsters like his life depends on it. Above all he is the greatest Daddy I could ever ask for, for my children. And he treats me like his Queen (and he calls me that too).

The Model Child: Diego Ray

The Model Child: Diego Ray
9 years old. My only boy. He is the epitome of the perfect child. He is so responsible and independent. Wise beyond his years. He is laughter, he is love, he is compassion, he is simply amazing. He keeps me grounded and reminds me always that I am beautiful. He is a natural born leader and takes care of the household and family better than me!

The Diva: Alayna Danae

The Diva: Alayna Danae
7 years old. She is drama. My fashionista for sure with a style all her own. Sensitive and loving when she wants to be. Thumbsucker. My biggest headache because she is the most like me. She is the only one who can cause me to become uncontrollably angry. She loves to dance. She loves to model. My bookworm and most academic.

The Wild Child: Arielle Marie-Grace

The Wild Child: Arielle Marie-Grace
4 years old. This one is something else. She is pure comedy. Never a dull moment with her crazy antics. She is also the crybaby. She does things her own way. She knows what she wants and isn't afraid to be cute to get it. My Disney loving pal. So girly. Her favorite color is pink. Loves Rapunzel. Will wear a dress every single day. Can't leave the house without a bow in her hair. She refuses.

The Munchkin: Atalie Belle

The Munchkin: Atalie Belle
2 years old. My sweet baby. She loves her Mommy above all else. She is a cuddlebug for sure. The calmest most well behaved baby ever! But she has TONS of energy. She is so small and petite. She loves to sing and dance. She so SO ready for ballet and has yet to even step foot in a class. She loves Minnie Mouse and watching Disney Jr. She is hilarious and talks way too much.
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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Search for Lalaloopsy

What is a Lalaloopsy you ask?

If you don't have a little girl then let me fill you in. They have been big since last Christmas. They are these cute dolls modern "rag dolls" with big heads. They are supposedly sewn from a piece of clothing and each one had a theme. One is sewn from a clowns costume so therefore she takes on that personality. and each one has a pet to match. My daughter mentioned them since last Christmas so I knew what they were. As it got closer to her birthday this year in July she asked for one. That's all she wanted. And we never got it for her. But her obsession continued on. I bought her a book of them. It tells their stories of how they came to be. And she studied it and learned them all.

Then I started liking them too. The more she talked about them... the more I learned about them and I even follow them on FB haha! Her and I obsess over their cuteness when a new one comes out. She has her favorites and I have mine. Yes! They're that cute! Don't judge me!

So this year the plan was to FINALLY buy her one of the full size dolls. I had been scoping them out since October hoping to see if I find her favorite one. I figured with plenty of time before Christmas I might as well try and get her the one she loves the most. Well one thing after another happened and we had done all our shopping and that was the ONLY thing we hadn't bought. Oh and did I mention this was on the night before Christmas Eve?

All the week prior I had been sure I could just walk into a store and grab one... any one... because at this point, a week before Christmas I just wanted to give her any of them. But nope. For 7 days straight I hit up every store near me... sometime more than once a day to get my hands on one. And there were none. I called Targets, Toys R Us, and Walmarts not in my area. And nothing. No one could tell me where to find one. No one had them on their shelves. All they could say was whenever they did get a couple in they would be gone in a second. And of course no one could hold one for us.

So I told my husband, we are going to go look for that doll! He didn't really want to at first but I felt so bad that she didn't even own one stinkin doll and had been loving them for a year! I knew it would just make her Christmas! And I love nothing more than to see my kids faces light up! So our search began at 7pm. The game plan? Walk in, check the Lalaloopsy section, and head out quickly if we didn't find one. We hit about 6 different store before I got a call from my cousin to fill us in on our Christmas Family Gathering. It was in this conversation that we learned... she too had been on the hunt all week for one of these dolls for her daughter. And she was out doing the very same thing! So I told her if we found some I'd pick one up for her and vice versa.

After we hung up with her, Jr and I still hit up a Target, a Walmart, a Kmart, and were headed to another Walmart over by my sister's house. It was the 10th store that night. (And while we were in each store I was still phoning other stores seeing if they had any on the shelves... gotta multitask!) It was close to midnight and as we walked into this particular Walmart it had turned into a game for us. A challenge. More than ever we wanted to find a doll because of all the time we were investing. As we approached the toy aisle we split up as we had been doing. I realized Jr had gone the wrong way so to beat him I beelined it to the girls aisle. (I know how all these Walmarts are set up like the back of my hand) He is faster than me and we turned into the same aisle from opposite ends at the same time. But I was right there. I looked at the section of Lalaloopsies.

My heart sank. Nothing but mini ones again. As we started to push around the toys to see towards the back if one was hiding back there... a stocker put down 3 small boxes by my feet. I don't know if you'd noticed how they stock at Walmart but they lay the boxes down on the ground in front of the sections they go and someone else comes and unloads the stuff onto the shelf later. So irritated and in a hurry I start shoving the boxes with my feet over to the side. And I continue searching the back of the shelves when I hear my husband scream, "You idiot! (In a loving way of course) By your foot!"

He reaches down and tears open the boxes to expose 9 full size Lalaloopsy dolls. Victory was ours! I literally screamed and jumped up and down as he pulled out each different one they had so I could choose. Out of the 9 there were 4 different ones. And he stood there clutching them in his arms while we laughed and laughed and basked in our glory. The stocker who heard our commotion was laughing at us because he noticed he had just put it down and we went crazy. He told us that every time he restocks them they would be gone in a flash. So as we stood there a man turns the corner and also spots them and snatches one up. He tells us, "I have been looking mad for one of these!" And in under a minute more customers grab the remaining ones we didn't have and they were all gone.

I called my cousin to come meet us to get hers. I called my sister to share my excitement. I texted my friends who I had on the hunt all week in their areas looking for them too. We were quite literally on a high! As we got to the registers my husband has decided that she was getting all 4 of them. (Plus the one boy doll we had in the car that we found at a Target a few hours before and bought just in case we never found a girl doll. Because at that point even the one boy doll was a victory) So we bought them all, and I made sure he price matched for Target's price because my husband will always overspend.

I was most definitely a happy camper. We both were!

Here's my cousin's husband Frank and my husband Jr posing outside after our Success!

So dear child of mine, this smile on your face says it all. One happy little girl with all her Lalaloopsy Dolls. Mommy and Daddy... err I mean Santa... will seriously do anything to make sure you're happy!

And in case you're wondering one of the ones that we snagged was actually her favorite doll and her 2nd favorite doll. And I had never seen either of them in the whole 2 months I was looking prior to Christmas.

Monday, December 26, 2011


The anticipation of Christmas had finally arrived! And now it's gone...

We celebrate on Christmas Eve and I was getting ready for that evening my sister and brother-in-law Loyiel gave me my gift early. And I was so excited!

I got my 4th pillowpet and the one I have been wanting for a while now.

See, I absolutely LOVE the movie Despicable Me. Like love love LOVE it. Just ask anyone. I quote this movie in my daily life all the time. (But then again when don't I quote movies?) I even taught Atalie how to say Popoy hahaha! And in the movie, if you haven't seen it, the little girl wants a unicorn toy (popoy) and when she sees it she says "It's so fluffy I'm gonna die!"

Well one day we were at Walmart and I saw it (I have a fascination with Pillowpets anyway) and I screamed, "It's so fluffy I'm gonna die!" and ran over to it and hugged it and begged for it. Just like in the movie. Well the boys (my hubby and his brother) did not buy it for me because my hubby had just bought me the zebra one. And I was sad.

But moral is, I am sad no longer because I have it! And I named her Agnes after the little girl in the movie. And my brother-in-law says he has done his good deed for the year. Better late than never... considering there's only a week left.

Anywho... we got ready and headed over to dinner at my aunts house. Our plan was to make it to Mass at church but due to technical difficulties we didn't make it and I was pretty bummed.

So my husband decided to show me some love to make me feel better.

But while we waited we took advantage and I got a few pictures of my minions all dressed up! (Wait, that was another Despicable Me reference...)

And the baby girls of the family stopped long enough to get ONE picture of them... Miss Laila and Miss Atalie Belle Pepper

And I had to bribe Talie with a cookie to pose for this one with me... but she is a good little poser.

My baby boy and my Pops

My Sisterface, My Pops, and Me!

Not too long before midnight we came back to my house to see what Santa left for us! And boy was that room full of stuff!

The kids literally oohed and aahed when they walked in the front door... and Atalie quickly ran up to her pink car! I don't know how she knew it was even hers... but Daddy stuck her right in.

Then we all opened our gifts. We made out pretty great. the kids were happy... beyond happy. I was happy because my hubby got me a few things I have been wanting.

I loved watching my kids faces light up. And most of all I loved watching Atalie open gifts because I thought she wouldn't know what to do. And literally whispered Wow every time she found out what was behind the paper :)

Diego got tons of Cardinal gear and some outdoor toys. We steered clear of electronics or video games. Alayna had a Lalaloopsy Christmas. She is obsessed and I think I love them just as much now! Arielle had a Disney Princess theme going on. And she is the biggest Disney Princess fan. And Atalie got a few cute things and the best $5 I've ever spent... on a magnadoodle. That girl loves to draw (just look at my walls) and she still has yet to put down that magnadoodle. She even sleeps with it.

Christmas day for me is always chill and play with all the new toys day. My brother was given a ham from work and so he my brother-in-law cooked it up and we went to have dinner at their house.

It was a beautiful day and the weather was fantastic that we played outside all afternoon! My 2 oldest and my nephew got roller blades and so they learned really quickly how to use them! And Atalie got to ride around in her new car.

My baby girls are so beautiful. These two are literally my sunshines.

Arielle thinks she IS Rapunzel and I knew she'd love this gift.

While my niece Laila took a turn in Tal's car... she played with one of Laila's toys and didn't like that Uncle Oscar was trying to play too...

I had to go inside to finish making the mashed potatoes for lunch and the 3 older kids on blades kept coming in and out of the house. I repeatedly told them to go back outside because they would slip on the tile. They had never been on roller blades before and I knew someone was bound to slip and fall. And I was right... Alayna tried going over to get some water and slipped but grabbed onto the water dispenser and knocked it over on top of her. The whole 5 gallon jug landed on her head. Poor girl.

But Grandpa makes everything better.

And then we ate our delicious dinner :) Yum!

And Arielle HAD to sit on the same seat as her brother... even when there was extra chairs. That girls idolizes him. And I love that he just lets her as long as it makes her happy. I kept asking her to give him his own chair and he kept telling me that he was fine :)

After dinner we opened up my Just Dance 3 game for the Wii and danced. I still remain the Queen of that game. I rock!

And then we came home where my husband spent the whole night assembling all the kids gifts. While I watched The Grinch!

We had the best Christmas! My kids are enjoying all their gifts. And we're enjoying spending all our time together just hanging out playing.

Tonight my husband, the kids, and I played on the Wii for almost 2 hours. It was so much fun :) I love family time... and the holidays bring us even closer together.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Mama, You're The Queen of My Heart

I have been trying to start this post all day and instead I am just sitting here staring at this picture I uploaded and the white blankness underneath. Trying to find the right words to express what I feel today and everyday. But truth is there isn't the right words for me to even begin to portray what life is like. So I guess I will just start with the random thoughts I have had running through my head.

My Grandmother (my Mom's Mom) passed away when I was just 2 years old. Although I got to meet her, I never knew her. When I was old enough to realize and ask questions I asked about her. All I knew is she had died. But my Mom never offered any information about her. And at a young age I always had the feeling of don't ask about her because my Mom didn't want to talk about her. She never talked about her. And the things I did hear would be when I would hear random stories of my Mom's childhood and she or someone else mentioned her. As I grew I began to somewhat piece together what type of person she was. I knew she was loud and wasn't afraid to whoop some ass when it came to her kids being bad, my brother being bad, and to anyone in the neigborhood that dare mess with her family. She was a seamstress. She made my Mom's wedding dress. She made all my Mom's clothing. My Mom was the oldest and the only girl for 10 years until my aunt came along. So my Mom was very spoiled and her Mom made sure she had a new outfit for every occassion and all the new styles before anyone else did. She could cook! She was stubborn and had a temper. Her favorite holiday was Christmas and she went ALL OUT every year. I knew this because when I was a child my Mom was rarely "there" for Christmas. Christmas always reminded of my Grandma and so until she had Grandchilden, Christmas was a holiday that didn't bring her any spirit. My Grandma took very good care of her family. She was a giver and very much the head of her family. And that's easy to picture because that was MY MOM. Minus the fact that my Mom couldn't sew. So picturing my Grandma was usually pretty easy because I feel like I lived with her clone. At least that's what I have always imagined in my head. But that's really all I knew.

When I was a teenager, I decided to ask again. I had so many questions in my head. When was her birthday? I knew she was a scorpio because my Mom had mentioned a few times that her and her Mom both butted heads alot because they were both scorpios. When did she die? What did she die from? What was her favorite color? Did she like to dance? Sing? Do anything else besides sew? I mean I really knew nothing about her. She did eventually tell me that her birthday was November 15th. But really that was it. And I was always too afraid to ask her more because I always felt her hesitation when I brought her up. Mainly I wanted to know her. I wanted to know the woman who always brought a look of pain to my Mom's eyes when her name was brought up. And I always wondered... How did my Mom deal with that?

I have always ALWAYS known my Mom to be this strong woman. Fiercely independent. A woman not to mess around with. A woman who wasn't afraid to tell you the truth even if it was hurtful. A stubborn, sometimes short tempered woman. For a woman her size she packed a big punch for sure. But a woman to show emotion? No. Rarely. I never saw my Mom cry. I never saw her be sad. She hid it well. At least to us... because now that I look back as an adult. I know she did cry... and probably a lot. Probably in her room at night when we weren't around. And I always used to think to myself. She must really have a lot of grief because she never shared her memories of her. Of course she would! She was 24 years old when it happened! 24 years old! And although married with 2 chilren she was just a baby herself. Who could be ready to lose their Mother at 24 years old?! That always stuck with me.

It stuck with me so much so that on my 25th birthday I woke up to my husband telling me Happy Birthday... and I opened my eyes and the first thing out of my mouth was, "I am 25. I am past the age my Mom was when her Mom died." Why I evenn said that is beyond me. I didn't look at it as an accomplishment but I did think... I still feel like a child. My Mama still does everything for me when I mess up. She is still here to pick me up when my world is crashing down around me. She is still here for me to make sure I take my medicine when I am sick. She makes sure I have liquid because she knows even though I am 25 I can't swallow pills. And if I have to take a pill she is still here to crush the pill in between two spoons and mix it with water and force feed it to me like a baby. I was pregnant with the 4th baby at the time and she was there to rub my feet, my back, put my shoes on and tie them so i wouldn't have to bend down. Buy me anything I wanted to eat when I wanted it because to her a pregnant woman's cravings should never be left unsatisfied. She was literally my everything even though she would get so mad at me and tell me I was a Daddy's girl who was spoiled rotten and I didn't deserve it. She never failed to tell me that middle children should be the neglected ones and not spoiled. But she went ahead and continued spoiling me anyway. I knew with her as mad as she would get at me... and boy I could get her to yell at me a lot... she would always love me. So on my 25th birthday I sat and thought... Now I don't understand how she could have handled losing her Mom when I was at the same age. It seemed like in was absolutely impossible to live through.

And then it happened, exactly 2 months after my 25th birthday and just 3 days before Christmas my own world came crashing down on me and I was in that very same position. And yes... it did seem like it was something that was impossible to live through. Losing a parent, a loved one, but especially a Mother brings you pain to a level you didn't even know existed. A pain that is so indescriable that you just have to have lived it be able to even understand. People say they can relate... and to some degree this is true if they've ever lost someone close to them... but I also would think... "No you can't. You've never lost a parent. There is no way you can relate." The only feeling I can imagine being the same, if not worse, is losing your own child. Then tell me you know what I am feeling. And to have a loss that was so completely unexpected is even worse. I now understand what people who lose loved ones in accidents must feel. One day everything is fine and in the blink of an eye you're whole life is altered. I would never wish this pain on my worst enemy. Living every day with a void in your heart that could never be filled. A happiness that you will never get back. And a tear in your eye that will never go away. I understand there is a far greater plan, everything happens for a reason, but it's still totally and completely unfair.

There's not a day that goes by that I don't think of my Mama. Not a day that passes that I don't try and preserve her memory for the sake of my children. In the two years that have passed I have learned this. Time passes in the blink of an eye. Life goes on and yes it is still beautiful. There is still so much to be excited about, to be happy about, to be thankful for, and above all you don't get but one life to live. Good and bad we can't look back but only go forward. My Mom definitely taught me that and still it whether she knows that or not. And from her I have learned that I never want to keep anything about her from my children. I want them to know everything they want to know about her. I want them to always know her because they are too small to have the memories. And she was worth knowing! And as ironic as it may be... my Mom hated Christmas because it was her Mom's favorite holiday... I love Christmas even more now because my Mom passed 3 days prior. As if I don't already have enough to celebrate that season for... it's even better to celebrate my Mom's life as well.

So Merry Christmas Mama. I miss you more than ever. And I love you to infinity and beyond.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

A Month to Celebrate

Birthdays that is!

Our Goddaughter Arianna turned 4! Waaah! Her last birthday as an only child because my BFF is pregnant with a boy now who will also be our 2nd Godchild.

Nino loves to pester her...

And although she loved her cake... she did NOT like when we sang to her. It was too loud.


My aunt Kika turned... well she turned 29 I believe ;)And she looked hot might I add!

You know it's a great night when we have a stripper pole in our VIP area!

My love and I enjoyed our night out. With 4 kids they're hard to come by.

We did lots of dancing! And my husband DOESN'T dance! So this made me one happy happy wife! Because I love to dance. And obviously us girls love us a Jr sandwich!

And my 21 year old little cousins who we can finally party with joined us! Beautiful aren't they?

Of course a bathroom photo session is in order... well it wasn't planned but in our family we travel in packs to the bathroom. When one needs to go... we all go! And this is what usually ends up taking place...

And my Mom's best friend Denise showed up. We've known her since we were little little girls... like I think I was about 6 years old.

And before we left for the night... we got this picture. I love it because it's my Mom's 2 daughters, her best friend, and her only sister. If Mom were here she would have been in it.

As I got to my car that Jr (our DD) had pulled around to the front (because it was freezing) for us he handed me a rose that he bought outside of the club we were at. My husband is so romantical. He truly made my night a good one. And we had fun celebrating with my aunt!


My nephew Joey turned 2!


My nephew Ducky turned 7!

Phew! Yup birthday are NEVER ENDING in this family... and we love to celebrate :) Party on Wayne!

Thursday, December 15, 2011



Toy Story 3, the Academy Award®-winning smash hit blockbuster, is so hot it’s cool as everyone’s favorite toys take to the ice in Disney On Ice presents Disney•Pixar’s Toy Story 3! An accomplished creative team and a cast of world-class skaters are bringing Woody, the pull-string cowboy; space ranger Buzz Lightyear; Jessie, the yodeling cowgirl; and the rest of the Toy Story gang to fans and families around the country in this all-new, high-energy ice spectacular.

Inspired by the #1 animated movie of all time, Toy Story 3, and memorable moments from Toy Story and Toy Story 2, everyone’s favorite characters are hitting the ice in this sensational live production coming to your hometown! Catch all the heroic action when Buzz Lightyear, Woody, Jessie and the Toy Story gang escape from the rambunctious tots of Sunnyside Daycare and race for home, in their most daring adventure ever. Plus a few new faces join the fun, including Barbie’s groovy bachelor Ken and Lots-o’-Huggin’ Bear. It’s the biggest Toy Story experience ever on ice, jam-packed with fast-paced adventure such as Buzz’s galactic battle with Emperor Zurg and a hoe-down on the set of “Woody’s Roundup.” Relive the humor, friendship and charm of Toy Story when Disney On Ice presents Disney•Pixar’s Toy Story 3 takes family fun to infinity and beyond!

Wednesday, January 18th – 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, January 19th – 7:30 p.m.
Friday, January 20th – 10:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, January 21st – 11:30 a.m., 3:30 p.m. & 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, January 22nd – 1:30 p.m. & 5:30 p.m.

Ticket price levels are $14, $18, $25, $40 (VIP) and $68 (Front Row). Opening Night tickets available for “Buy One Get One Free” (excluding Front Row and VIP seating areas and limited to 6 per order). Tickets are available online at, by calling 800-745-3000 or at the venue Box Office.

US Airways Center – 201 E. Jefferson Street, Phoenix, AZ 85004

I will be at the opening night showing! Maybe I will see some of you there?!

To discover more about Disney On Ice, go to, or visit us on Facebook and YouTube.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Decorating Our Home for Christmas!

I love the Christmas season! So as tradition we don't put up our tree until the day after Thanksgiving. And for me that's too long to wait. It would have been up before halloween if it were up to me. But I like that fact that we have a special day that we put up all our decorations as a family.

I happened to have a tree from last year... then a few month ago I also inherited a tree from my aunt. Both fake. One with colored lights one with white lights. But I happened to my mention to my dear sweet husband that I liked the look of an all white tree with the red/white/silver color scheme I wanted this year. And he went out and bought me one even though I told him many times to save the money when we had 2 perfectly good trees to choose from. Bless his heart he never listens to me. But seeing as we had a new white tree we needed new ornaments.

We went to Walmart and I am thinking of course of my red/white/silver snowflakes and icicle tree in my head when lo and behold Jr decides he wants a blue theme. Since when does he want to have an opinion around here? I am thinking "When I want your opinion I will give it to you"... but he fought me on it. My Mom has always done blue and silver so I am kinda all blued out ya know? But he went on and on about how he wanted it to be different and not traditional red or green.

Bah Humbug!

So I suggested if he wanted to be different then he should give me the pink tree I haave wanted for years. And I found pink ornaments. Well since we couldn't decide I took the kids on a walk through the toy aisle and he came back with a box of pink ornaments, a box of teal ornaments and a set of purple high heeled ornaments. I about died! Not only did he compromise but he found purple heels! Purple heels have a lot of meaning for us but long story short my Mom was buried in purple high heels. Needless to say I was ecstatic! And since we couldn't on tree toppers either, I love stars and ONLY stars, and he likes the Angels but I think they look creepy... I found a large purple snowflake ornament with a photo opening and snuck it into the cart. When we the firs thing I did was print a picture of my Mom and stuck it in there.

And the festivities began...

The Hubby putting up the tree
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And the kids had a ball (no pun intended) putting all the ornaments on

And Atalie had fun just staring at it...

And then it was complete and we were happy!

And lastly we hung up the stocking after decorating all the other walls.

And lastly we hung up our lists... in hopes that some of these things Santa will be kind enough to bring us!