Epic Journey: HAIR-ible Decision

I ran into some technical difficulties attempting to post this entry earlier this week.😦 What I thought was a finished piece with no photos ended up not being saved. Technology fail. It took me a little extra time to get all the kinks worked out and show everyone all the awesome pictures of me…with crazy hair! Enjoy!!😉

Long, long ago, in the land of East L.A. there was a girl who was constantly ridiculed about her hair. Her hair was thick, wavy, and had volume most women would kill for. It was the bane of my existence.

Evolution of Hair (Not the Musical)
In middle school my choir nickname was Puffy. Long before Puffy Daddy existed. Puff ball. Afro puff. There are more lovely nicknames I went by, but they’re mostly lame. I have an Uncle who was more like an older brother to me growing up, and he once drew a picture of me. With an afro. After swimming my hair looked a little flat, and then turned into a giant Chia Pet.

As a wee babe I had a lot of hair. In retrospect I look adorable!

As a wee babe I had a lot of hair. In retrospect I look adorable!

After years of trying to tame, tie down, and mangle my hair I tried one thing at the start of high school that I finally felt comfortable with: braids. Since my follicles were surprisingly thick and perfect for being twisted and tied in to over a hundred little braids. They were all done by my Mother, for FREE. Cause let’s face it, I’m a tomboy and I ain’t paying to get my hair did. I kept my hair braided all through high school, and even dyed some of them red. I loved not having to style my hair, or really do anything other then try to keep it out of my face. Even when I had short hair during my Junior year of High School, it was still braided.

Circa 1995 my hair in the early years of being braided. Check out my hip style and funny faces.

Circa 1995 my hair in the early years of being braided. Check out my hip style and funny faces.

Once I started college I felt I needed a look. A new me. Plus, I didn’t want to have to explain my parents are of Mexican heritage, and no, sadly I am not of mixed race. However, I did rock those braids for four years. Sadly, my lazy ass couldn’t be bothered with styling my hair so I revisited the pony-tail and felt annoyed at having to figure something out. It continued to grow, despite me tying it up all the time, and eventually my hair was long enough for me to rock a hairstyle dubbed “Punk Rock Leia” by some of my fellow college newspaper peeps. I wore a bandanna with two buns at the back of my head because I decided it was easier than styling it. It took me at least half an hour to do. Everyday. Hair style irony.

Circa 1999-2000 in my Punk Rock Leia phase of hair styles.

Circa 1999-2000 in my Punk Rock Leia phase of hair styles.

After my sophomore or junior year of college (I can’t remember which, I was probably stoned at the time) I finally had enough and decided to chop it off. My Mother, being the talented Barber that she is (she owns one of the two the Professional Barber Shop’s in East L.A. on Cesar E. Chavez) helped me chop off most of my hair, in our kitchen. We had a large basin sink in our kitchen which I used to rinse out my hair after having it cut short in to what I like to call a tomboy pixie (see definition for Lesbian haircut). I lifted my head back up and almost fell on my ass because I wasn’t accustomed to having this (literal) weight lifted from my neck and shoulders. I felt light as a feather and excited for my hair style adventures. Of course, history repeated itself and I began to get a lot of Lesbian jokes from my family and a few friends who weren’t too pleased by my dramatic shift in style. In their defense I did own a patch on my backup that had a pink and rainbow women’s symbol which I thought was a symbol of women empowerment at the time and coincidentally made everyone in college think I was a lesbian. Oh well.

My College Rebellion of purple hair, punk rock band t-shirt, coffee, and henna tattoos. While making a funny face.

My College Rebellion of purple hair, punk rock band t-shirt, coffee, and henna tattoos. While making a funny face.

I kept my hair short for quite some time and attempted at growing it out only to freak out and go running to my Mom to chop it all off again. The main reasons for keeping it so short are simple:

  1. No more heat rash.
  2. Less hair product to use.
  3. (Almost) No brushing needed.
  4. Don’t have to pay for expensive haircuts.
  5. I’m Lazy!

Obviously number 5 is a big factor. I still don’t own very much makeup or hair care products. I usually make an emergency run to the local drug store to buy beauty essentials if I have to attend a Wedding, Bridal Shower, or some other girl-centric event in my life. I still don’t feel 100% wearing dresses or skirts because I’m always afraid I’ll accidentally flash someone because I don’t sit like a lady should. I DO own a ton of shoes, cause I try to be comfortable when I’m on my feet all the time, even if it’s in heels.

When my fiance and I started dating I had been growing out my hair because I was, again, lazy and too poor to go get a haircut. I’ve since realized boys love longer hair. Know why? They love crazy after-sex bed hair!😉 Which I can get behind, until it’s Summer. Then I have to go get an emergency haircut because the heat rash and sweaty neck are not sexy. Ever. Suffice it to say that my fiance was not as excited as I was when I showed up with short hair once the heat wave started.

College circa 2001 of me trying to study while a friend gets my attention and captures this amazing photo. This stare continues to put fear in many friends and family.

College circa 2001 of me trying to study while a friend gets my attention and captures this amazing photo. This stare continues to put fear in many friends and family.

Trying to figure out how I want to style my hair for the wedding is another BIG decision that I’m having trouble with, and it’s obviously due to my own hangups about my self-image tied to my hair. I’ve always admitted to friends over the years that I have a Love/Hate relationship with my hair. I love that I can easily style it into a Mohawk or braids because it has the volume to sustain crazy styles. I hate that I have to shampoo it 2-3 more times than everyone else to get rid of all the crappy hair product I have to use. Last Fall I begrudgingly started growing my hair out to help give me some perspective, and more options, on how I could style my hair for the Big Day. Every month I threw a giant fit about how much I hated growing out my hair because I didn’t like wearing it down, or I was having trouble getting my hair to cooperate that day. Eventually my fiance gave in and said, “Look, you can chop it off if you really want. I don’t care how you wear your hair for the wedding. Just know that I love your hair no matter how it looks.” Awwwww. Isn’t he the best?

Sticking my tongue out for the camera while I rock the blond short hair.

Sticking my tongue out for the camera while I rock the blond short hair.

Since then he’s shown me a lot of pixie cuts and other hair styles in magazines to encourage me to do what I want. He has always been loving and encouraging when it’s comes to me and my hair issues. At the end of the Big Day I know that how my hair looks will only matter when I look back at all the pictures, and I have to learn how to live and love my hair for what it is, and who I am. I’ve still been growing it out, and have started to wear it down, without a headband or hair clips. Which is…kind of a big deal, for me. And my hair. However, chances are good that it will be cut shorter for the Wedding because….SUMMER IS COMING and I ain’t gonna be dealing with heat rash. Ever.

A recent photo of me posing for the camera.

A recent photo of me posing for the camera.

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Newsflash: I didn’t change my name when I got married, and I probably never will.

Hola from marriedville! Don’t tell any one, but it’s just like regular life except people (mainly family, some friends) seemed to be freaked about me keeping my name.

I know it’s been almost a year since I updated anything on here. Besides my laptop sucking and trying to plan parties, packing all of my belongings, working a couple of jobs, and moving, its safe to say I’ve been preoccupied.🙂

So what’s the big deal? We’ll, I’m not sure. I have however found 3 reasons to help people cope with my choice.

1) It’s my name. I’m keeping it.

I am not saying my family name is special, BUT it is how I see myself. I had always planned on keeping my name, it wasn’t a a secret. I’m not upset if people call me Mrs. Awesome. I just let it slide. I love that my husbands family calls me Mrs. because they want to see me as part of the family. Not having the same name does NOT make me not family. I LOVE my husbands family and they are always going to ask, “When do you think you’ll change your last name?” And I love them for it.

He is my lover and best friend and I will love him no matter what. Having the same name doesn’t mean I love him more, and having a different name doesn’t mean I love him less.

2) I am still married even if our names are different.

A lot of people think I want to go by Miss or Ms because I kept my name therefore am not allowed to be called Mrs. I. Don’t. Care. I’m not a grammar- nazi like some friends, but I did try to use proper name listings on our wedding invitations for other peoples sake. Even if I did spell one of my bridesmaids name wrong…don’t judge me.

3) IF/When we have kid(s) they will still know I’m their Mother..


I’m sure they’ll be fine. My husband’s family have a tradition of adding the mothers maiden name as a middle name or a second middle name. I think it’s a great way to trace family heritage and keep a connection to your next of kin and it can be listed on their birth certificate. Kids and adults hate hyphenated names, and this way they can choose which names they want to use in the future. Choice sounds beautiful doesn’t it?

Plus, legally changing your name is a LOT of work. For our future possible progeny it will be easier to pick a last name kids want, like they sometimes do when they chose to go by their middle name instead of their legal first name, or when they sometimes go by nicknames.

I love thinking about the options my hypothetical progeny will have when we discuses this possibility! I know it makes some people squirm and uncomfortable with my choices. Guess what? Don’t. Give. One. Fuck. It’s our life, and our choice to live it that way.

Go live your own life people!

Now that I have that out of the way everyone can start asking me other silly married life questions.🙂


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Miracle’s Are Possible – #EricFest! #WeHeartEric

Check out the article I was interviewed for about our fundraising event for our friend Eric! It brought me to tears (of happiness) and has reassured all of us involved that Eric will get at least some of the help he needs to get back on his feet once he is out of the hospital.

4th Street Community Bands Together to Turn One Man’s Health Crisis into Hope.

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Inspiration Moment

The end of September is upon us and we have hardly had the time to realize what an impact some people have had on our lives.

Shortly after returning from our Honeymoon we were informed that a local friend had fallen ill and was in the hospital. He had been sick when we saw him the day before our wedding and we gave him our love and a hug before we left town. Within a few days after seeing him in the hospital a small group of friends started planning ways to help him and his family with medical costs. What first was a small barbecue quickly became a collaborative effort of friends and local businesses pulling their resources and manpower to pitch in.

In just over a week we have received almost 100 people who have promised to donate, contribute, and most of all, help our friend Eric when he needs us the most. I’m excited and overwhelmed by the love and responses from people willing to come together and make our city feel like a small town.

My husband and I have lived, worked, and loved being part of Long Beach for almost 10 years. We haven’t known him as long as others, but I can’t imagine a life, or a world, without him in it.


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Post-Wedding Post-Honeymoon Post-Drama


It’s been a while since I’ve made the time to sit down with my digital thoughts. Between working two jobs, planning our wedding, and honeymoon I tried to keep myself on schedule, and still make time for us to enjoy our lives. Which meant not being online, and hanging out with people, drinking, smoking, and most importantly living our lives together.

I’m not gonna lie, it was an emotional roller coaster dealing with family drama, and other people trying to impose their own definition of what our wedding meant to them. A lot of emotions come up; some that have been hidden for years, and others that you’re forced to answer because of the circumstances. I always knew our wedding wouldn’t make a few people happy for a million little reasons. I also knew that no matter what we would still be together whether or not the wedding happened according to our plans.

Turns out…everything was awesome!😉

Our venue day-of contact, photographer, DJ, and our friends and family said it was a well oiled machine, and some even complimented us on how well organized all the decorations were kept. At one point, we were running ahead of schedule! That made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. One of my bridesmaids was so impressed she hired me to be her Day-Of Coordinator for her wedding at the end of October! AND my new Sister-in-Law would like my help planning her Baby Shower (free of course, for family)!!!


One of my biggest fears was not being able to get back on my feet after the wedding and honeymoon. Now, I can’t even begin to say how excited I am to get back to work, start new adventures, and feel like I’m part of the world again. There were times when planning the wedding felt really isolating, and made it hard for people to relate (not everyone has to tackle a guest list and seating chart every week for over 2 months!). Luckily, I’ve had some practice from my previous line of work at a non-profit theatre company. I also had a few great friends and my Husband to thank for all their help and support over the last year and a half!

I just hope I can get back to hanging out with friends, playing board games, and eating burgers every week between all my new work.🙂


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Epic Journey: Musical Chairs


As any one who has had to plan a wedding of any size knows the first thing everyone freaks out about is the guest list. The cost, venue, or any other small number of things that can make you break out in hives. The guest list selection is one of the most humbling and nerve racking experiences every couple must face. It’s like a choice between cake or death* (see footnote).

When my fiance and I sat down and made a rough draft list it was daunting. We purposely had a long engagement so we could make a lot of decisions over time, and tried not to make snap decisions based on emotional knee jerk reactions. We both have large Catholic families…with lots of kids and other extended family. We had a hard time trying to figure out how to negotiate the scope of our list.

When we tell people how large our guest list is (only if they ask) their eyes get big. Then people begin to say, “Just elope!” Then we have to do a little dance and explanation of how that isn’t possible** (see below for short answer). Long answer: his family and our friends love to party and dance and they will make it feel like an awesome party. My personal reasons for not wanting, or ever imagining a large wedding, is due to my own family bringing drama to the table. Like our wedding favors, we had to adjust our settings every time we addressed the count of the guest list. Every few months the number and names changed, parents gave extended family members names, and we realized we left someone off the list by accident that we hadn’t seen in a while. Having a long engagement helped us deal with these small surprises over time.

Even after we made a final A and B guest list I had a few extra blank envelopes set aside just in case we had a few seats open up. Which they did, and not from friends or family we expected. Having a long engagement also opened up seats due to break-ups, travel arrangement issues for family and friends coming from out of town, and some life events in general. Sad to hear some are not able to attend, and happy I have the ability to strategically replace those empty seats with other people we love.

The dance of musical chairs has been an interesting aspect of wedding planning that I was afraid to tackle from the beginning. It was (literally) my worst nightmare. It is now over a year after our engagement and only two months away from the wedding. Planning and writing about this whole experience has been enlightening and an educational process. I would never wish this kind of societal torture on any of my friends, but maybe a few “frenemies.”

The latest development has been all the in-fighting happening in both our families. It’s gotten so dramatic we have a little over 3 tables worth of family, on both sides, who are requesting to be seated with their own group of people. To add to the complications I’ve also been instructed to seat them across the hall from each other for fear they will walk out and leave the reception. Drama.

I will say I am greatly disappointed to be given these types of requests and restrictions for what is suppose to be a day “about us,” and be made to feel like we’re the ones making it difficult for them to be able to attend in peace. You would think these “adults” would put their personal and petty feelings aside for one day to let us enjoy ourselves but I guess that was asking for too much.

*Eddie Izzard joke reference from Dressed to Kill

**Short Answer: His family and Mother would kill us.


Don’t forget to watch me freak out on twitter and pretend I can accomplish all my Pinterests!

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Note of Worth

Things have gotten complicated. There are lots of things happening.

  • Work
  • Wedding
  • Financial Issues
  • Life Issues
  • Worries

Which is why I haven’t been staying on task with my musings as much as I would like to. I’ve written have a dozen drafts and published none. I have an almost finished piece on my Bridal Shower but every time I go to finish it, or attempt to publish it, something else gets my attention and I am required to let it sit while I attend to my real world problems.

This blog/journal was an attempt to keep things positive and happy, and possibly introspective. I haven’t been feeling that way lately. We are at the 2 1/2 month mark from the wedding and I’m feeling…lots of things lately. I’ve been fairly productive with small projects, and our bathroom is under minor construction at the moment (FINALLY!), but that also means I have take a shower…for a few days. Yuck.

The most recent moment of note was watching Man of Steel with a group of some of my favorite people. That same day I got a sunburn, a sinus infection from the A/C at the movie theater, and mild food poisoning from the theater coffee as well. Yet, I still considered it the best day I had this past week.


I guess what I’m really trying to say is I feel lost. There are only a handful of people I feel comfortable talking to about some of the more serious issues going on in my life at the moment. I often get this ominous feeling of dread, or anxiety, at very stressful points in my life and not many people can handle being around me, or really want to help or be there for me. I’m a bit abrasive, on purpose or by accident from time to time. It’s one of my most charming traits. Just kidding. However, I still have feelings, and people tend to forget that. They feel they can treat me like what I want, or what I feel isn’t real because I’m just being “crazy” or lately the new nickname is “bridezilla.” That’s just rude.


I also recently realized that I’ve been trying SO hard to be considerate of everyone else all the time and have tried to not be a burden of everyone around me that I’ve walled myself up and just feel like I can no longer trust any of them by default.

When I say, “Wanna come with me to go shoe shopping and have a few drinks?” What I really want is just to spend time with you while being productive. “Wanna come over and play board games?” What I really want is to not talk about the wedding and just enjoy your company. “What’s going on with your wedding?” Cause I’m really tired of talking about mine. A lovely woman who I spoke to about my wedding with joy in my voice a few weeks ago asked me about my wedding the other day and all I could muster was an “Ugh” response. Then I felt horrible for even vocalizing it. It was during a work function and I didn’t want to be distracted, and I was a little stressed in that moment. I tried to be chat with her about other things to avoid having my grumpy side lash out at her by accident. She seemed receptive and the event went well without further ugliness.


I’ve tried so hard to keep my negative side in check for so long that I feel like I’m going to burst with crazy! What helped to deflate the volcanic eruption was a well deserved face-to-face lunch with my Best Friend and Maid of Honor. We get each others grumpy cat alter egos. We’ve had years of practice. We’ve both been on the receiving end of a verbal slap to the face from one another so that we can now help to burst that bubble before it has a chance to do more harm to any one else. However, at the end of yesterday I felt that sense of dread again. It wasn’t because my BF/MOH didn’t help, it was because it was more than just the little things that finally brought me down at the end of the day.

“Aren’t you excited for your big day? It’s coming up soon!” asked an Aunt at my Bridal Shower.

“Yeah, I guess. I’ll be excited when I have nothing else to do, and it’s finally here. And I’m on my honeymoon.” I responded.

It may not be what people want to hear, but it’s the honest truth. What I’d really like is to get back to my real life and have people ask me about that instead.

Watch me get CRAZY on Twitter, and pretend my problems don’t exist on Pinterest!



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Epic Journey: Wedding Favors Edition

One the cutest things we came up with for our upcoming wedding was our favor. For a while I didn’t like the idea of doing one because I’m cheap and lazy. I also didn’t want Jordan almonds anywhere near my wedding. Of course, upon hearing this my Mother was immediately annoyed and bewildered by my taste. Let me get back to my point…

The thing that gave me inspiration for our wedding theme was finding one thing to fall in love with: our wedding favor. Before I fell in love with the idea of planning our wedding I fell in love with our favor idea. The idea and inspiration came from a Save the Date I found on the website Offbeat Bride. It was then we decided on custom designed coffee mugs with a slightly altered design from our Save the Date. It sounded perfect.

Of course, all things planned around a wedding are never perfect. At first, I had an acquaintance from my old job who volunteered to help with creating the custom mugs. Then I left that job and the friendly acquaintance soon stopped communicating with me. I had actually assumed early on that this individual wasn’t going to come through on their promise and wasn’t too disappointed when they started to ignore my calls and emails. C’est la vie.

We continued to get estimates for this lovely idea and were disappointed to find out it was WAY outside of our original budget. Sad face. I continued to scour the Internet for other possible vendors that might be a little more within our price range. No dice. Second sad face.

I began browsing Pinterest for some more inspiration and less expensive alternatives. I then found this photo of coffee cups with pretty ribbon and stickers.

Paper Coffee Cup Idea of Inspiration

Paper Coffee Cup Idea of Inspiration

This became my awesome backup idea! Red ribbon and sleeves on small paper coffee cups with a sticker or our altered Save the Date image. Brilliant! Except, we can’t use lids because they’ll be filled with chocolate covered coffee/espresso beans…and the sleeves in the photo are really hard to find…or doesn’t exist…because the original link for the image doesn’t exist any more..DAMMIT!

Back to the drawing board, and the World Wide Web.

I spent a few exhaustive days rummaging through Google trying to find something that spoke to me. I was coming up short in the mugs arena, so I stuck with the paper coffee cups idea, but was looking for something different. Then I found something that was right up my sleeve (coffee pun)! I came across a website by the name of Custom Cup Sleeves and they were not only in our price range but they also had a gallery of other custom coffee sleeves they created for other weddings. It was a dream come true!

Test image of how our Wedding Favor will look on the small 8oz coffee cups. They're SO CUTE!

Test image of how our Wedding Favor will look on the small 8 oz coffee cups. They’re SO CUTE!

After ALL the months of changes and budgeting and stress it was finally coming together. Trying to decide on what our wedding favor was going to be was a struggle. However, it wasn’t any different from deciding on any other item for our wedding. Our expectations were lowered, our budget changed, we made accommodations and tried to moderate our reactions. It was a big lesson in flexibility.

Nothing is going to go smoothly or be perfect. There are other options out there. Yes, it’s not what you pictured in your head right after he proposed, (I’m speaking hypothetically of course, cause I had NO plans on a big wedding) but that isn’t what’s really important. What’s important is that you like it, and LOVE the idea of still getting married to whoever is standing in front of you on the Big Day. I’m really grateful we found something that goes with the paper/book theme, AND has something to do with how we met (at a coffee shop).

We still have a few things to iron out and a few more months to go. Lets hope there aren’t any more kinks to work out.😉

Check our favors featured on OffbeatBride!

Check me out on Pinterest and Twitter for more crazy rants about my wedding.

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Epic Journey: 4 months and counting!


As my lovely calendar keeps reminding me we have four months to go before the Big Day…and I am behind a few projects. Eeep!

I’ve been a little sick the past week, Bridal Shower preparations are underway, shopping for accessories, and trying to stay focused. Deep breaths. I’m working on a great post about our wedding favors, which are ADORABLE by the way. If the week goes well I should have it up by Friday. If not…I’ll definitely have it up by Monday, as usual. I also had a few friends over last night to help me out with a few wedding craft projects that I’ve been slacking off on doing myself. I try and try to plan craft nights and something always goes wrong, or conflicts arise and I end up not making the invite. I have found that by just talking to people about when they have free time and making a commitment right then and there has been far more effective in getting me off my ass to do stuff with friends, and wedding stuff.

My friends giving a helping hand with some decorations.

My friends giving a helping hand with some decorations.

I’m doing my best to stay motivated and not get too bogged down by the stresses of last-minute preparations. Writing about everything as it happens helps give me perspective, laugh in retrospect, and gives me something to look forward to. Writing, journals, and blogging have always been my form of therapy (cause regular therapy is expensive!). I’ve had a journal almost my whole life. My friends and I were on LiveJournal all the time. Okay, mostly I was on there all the time. I’ve made a lot of friends through online forums, chat rooms, and other online communities and it’s always been inspirational to see how many of them I’ve kept in touch with over the years. Even if I’m writing to myself it doesn’t make a difference to me. I write because I want to, not for others, and definitely not to get others to like me more. I’m a little abrasive for some.😉

Hope everyone is having a great week. I’m gonna try get over this nasty cold that’s taken my voice and made me sound like a 60 year-old chain smoker! Oh, and go see the new Star Trek: Into Darkness movie!😉

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#IGGPPC – Manila Envelopes

I love stationary. I’ve recently become a fan of the online retailer Knock Knock. When I received their latest email with a new line of envelopes I knew I had to splurge on this delightful item and share it with my friends from IGGPPC!😉


Paper Envelopes | Contents Manila Not Vanilla Envelopes | KNOCK KNOCK.

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