Friday, November 28, 2008

Planning for the future?

I have never been the type to really plan for the future. I mean, sure, I am a DREAMER. A total DREAMER. But that is it. I tend to take things step by step. It's been the way I've always been and I've been successful at mostly everything I've accomplished in my life. Especially when I got engaged I was never the type a girl who had their wedding mapped and planned out already. I had to start from scratch. It was very overwhelming, but worthwhile and memorable. But decisions were tough to make, especially since I had at least 3 wedding magazines in my presence at all times and my macbook set on The Knot.
So, what does this lead to? Well, I think I am about to change my ways for just this one time. My DREAM is to have a little girl one day. Again, I am DREAMING! Who knows if that will come true, but never the less, I stumbled upon a FABULOUS play room design that I have totally fallin' in love with. It's already set in my favorites and I hope I will one day be able to re-create this. So, I had to share.

For more inspiration go to,

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Almost One year ago...I married my best friend!

Almost one year of marriage! WHAT? I can't believe it. Can you?!

It feels like just yesterday when I was planning a storm and having panic attacks. Wait. No. It still feels like I got engaged just yesterday! I guess that is a good thing because I am the happiest I've ever been still. I am truly blessed. I love being married to my best friend.

Sure, we've been together for 10 years. But let me tell you....I sure have learned A LOT about Ronnie and myself over the past year. Here are a few things I've learned about being "newlyweds".....

1. 2x the income is great! Sure, it took us over a year to manage 2 incomes, since I recently found my permanent teaching position. But I've learned to appreciate it. Having only one income sucks. Period.
2. Marriage can be both the easiest and hardest thing to ever go through. I'll hold nothing back - sometimes I can't stand him!! (Especially with Election 08' and only having ONE TV!)
3. My favorite part of the day, though, is when we turn off the TV and get into bed and cuddle with each other until we fall asleep. I really cherish those moments.
4. When it comes to that time of the month, I am the worst! I am needy and whiny. I don't know how he puts up with it!
5. I'm not sure if he always thinks what I say is important, but he tries to make me feel that way. And then there are times when I get into those "dream" moments. And he tries to "Dream" with me. And when I go overboard, he makes me know it!
6. Why don't people have a name for the weight you gain post wedding, like the freshman 15?
7. Just because we are married, it does not mean we are ready to have the baby. OUR TIME WILL COME! Please stop asking! LOL
8. I ABSOLUTELY HATE DOING LAUNDRY FOR 2 PEOPLE! But I think many of you know this already. It's cute and fun in the beginning, but forget it. I can't keep up! I am surprised Ronnie hasn't had to wear MY underwear yet!
9. I'd much rather lay at home on the couch with my hubby than go out any day.
10. When we first bought the house, Ronnie had a lot of opinions about how we should decorate or where we should put things. And let me tell hasn't changed. He has a much better eye for that than I do and has an opinion about EVERYTHING! Who knew?!
11. I can't believe it's been one year already...pretty soon it will be 5 years, 10 years, 25 years! And I can't wait!

Monday, October 13, 2008

my mami loves me!

Notice anything different?! Santa brought me a "care package" from Miami!!!! =)

Monday, October 6, 2008

it hurt. a lot.

Sometimes I wonder if I were really supposed to be born a blonde. Seriously. I mean, these things only happen to me. I am sure when you read this you will probably end up cracking up. I am used to it already. You will also think "AY ERIKA!" or ask "She did what?!" ... so yes, I did...I totally walked into a pole.


I was walking and talking to a student to the bus when all of a sudden my glasses went flying and I began to cry....I had just ran into a pole. And no, I didn't turn to look (there wasn't time). I just smacked my head right into it. When I called my mom she responded with "Pero que? You drove into a pole?" No. no. no. Believe it or not I walked and bumped right into it myself. When I called my dad he was concerned with "who I was voting for" and "which was my favorite baseball team", to which I responded with "OBAMA" AND "THE RED SOX", and therefore my dad concluded that I was "JUST FINE!" Yeah, yeah, yeah. I sure as hell should write a book called "All the Things that Can Happen to You as a First Year Teacher" and none of the advice would be about actually TEACHING the children.

Ronnie zoomed to the school to pick me up. I went to the closest clinic to get it checked out and x-rayed. Everything is fine. Thankfully. I have my big bottle of Tylenol next to me. And I have to go for a check up next week. I hope I sleep OK. So far, so good though.

There is the bump. On the top right side of my forehead. It's gone down a lot. But it's not pretty and it doesn't feel like it, either.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Black Beans a la "Lata"

Tonight I made the best black beans a la "lata". Yes! From the can. But with a twist. I always read My Big Fat Cuban Family -A Cuban American Blog and that is where I got the recipe from. I didn't have the garlic, but used garlic powder. Also, the recipe calls for 1 tsp sugar, but I added 2 for a little more sweetness. Overall, it was so easy and it gave the beans so much taste! We loved them. Please try this out for yourself. It will not disappoint.
You will need "una lata" de Goya black beans:

Make the sofrito:

Add the beans and the rest and the ingredients....simmer.....Full recipe below.

Here is the recipe courtesy of Babalu Blog
Frijoles Negros a la Latina
(Cuban-style Black Beans)

2 Tbsp. of olive oil
1 yellow onion, diced
1 bell pepper, diced
3 cloves of garlic, diced
1 large can of black beans (1 lb. 13 oz.)
1/4 cup of red wine (white works too, but red gives them a better flavor)
1 bay leaf
1 tsp. of sugar (but I will sometimes add extra, because I like ‘em sweet!)
1/2 tsp. oregano
1 packet of Goya seasoning with azafran
salt and pepper to taste

1. In a medium-sized frying pan (or a pot – either will work), sauté the onion, bell pepper, and garlic until onions are soft and clear. (You know, your basic “sofrito.”)
2. Now add the beans and then all other ingredients.

3. Cook on high for about 2 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the beans are the consistency you like best. In technical terms, you are “reducing” the beans - your goal is to boil-off some of the excess liquid.
4. Simmer for approximately 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.


Sunday, September 28, 2008

Wedding Shadow Box

I finally got it accomplished! I put together a shadow box with our wedding memorabilia! Isn't it awesome?! Memories from that day stuffed into this box forever. I figured to put my bouquet in there just last night, when Ronnie and I went to a party of newlyweds like us and I fell in love with the bouquet looked in her shadow box. Anyways, I hope to get a better picture of it soon. Inside I put things like, our wedding invite, cocktail napkin, place card, honey favor tags, rocks that read "cherish", "honor", etc. that I had laid out on the place card table, and my hair piece. Simply perfect!

Tell me what you think. I cried putting it together. Then I cried again when I showed it to Ronnie. ha!

Friday, September 26, 2008

My Birthday....coming soon!

OMG. My birthday is coming soon! I can't believe it....27! 27?! WHAT?! WHEN DID I TURN 25?! NOW 27?! Ay!!!
Anyways, I usually don't really WANT many things for my birthday. But this year, I actually have some things in mind. LOL Here is my wishlist: hint hint

Buy it here, X-Large I heart this new SBTB tee. I have no shame. I will wear it!

I am in desperate need of a new camera. I want this one: Canon PowerShot SD1100IS 8MP Digital Camera with 3x Optical Image Stabilized Zoom (Blue)

In the Heights Cast Album (Preferably gifted through iTunes)

Also, gift cards to Macys, Pier One, Target are also appreciated! ha! :o)

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Wedding Anniversary coming soon..

I've begun researching where Ronnie and I can celebrate our one year wedding anniversary. But we have some set backs. For 1. It has to be affordable. and 2. It has to be close by because we don't have any vacation days to spare. I have some ideas. But I think we might decide on visiting Asheville, NC and tour the Biltmore House/Estate. I hear it's gorgeous and it seems romantic. I think it would make a nice weekend trip where we can see beautiful NC in the fall and have a nice romantic dinner.

But I have to take to reflect. It was this week last year where I was getting ready to mail out my invites. And it was this month that I had my bridal shower in Miami. sigh. I can't believe it's been a year already! It did go by fast just like everyone said it would.

Here are some of my favorite pics of the most amazing bridal shower my mom and my bridesmaids could have ever thrown for me! I will never forget the memories from the day!

Monday, September 22, 2008

blast from the past!

thanks prima. you just made my awful day. seriously. these brightened my day with a ray of sunshine! i love you!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

SBTB on Robot Chicken

Looks like several of the cast members lend their voice to create this for Robot Chicken of Adult Swim. It's pretty funny. And it was nice to see them get together for this! awwww....i love sbtb!

Friday, September 5, 2008

One Lucky Gringo in NC

I had a long and busy week. This afternoon I needed to regroup my brain, so I went to get a manicure. Then I thought, a cuban meal would even hit the spot. And so right after my appt, I went to the grocery store then came home to create this:

Lets just say the manicure, the pan con bistec, and that BIG glass of red wine has made me feel the greatest all week! I want this feeling to last forever!

Thank goodness for culture and booze...feels goood!!!!

Sunday, August 31, 2008

This Cubanita still Looooves....

I <3 Que Pasa, USA? !

Saturday, August 23, 2008

New Kitchen Towels

Went to Macy's today. And, of course, I could never get away from the Martha Stewart collection. Check out my new kitchen towels! Cute! Don't ya think?

Friday, August 22, 2008

My 5th Grade Classroom

Well, I did it! I have worked hard for 5 days straight at around 10 hours a day to get my very first classroom set up. I survived my first Open House. I am in love with my kids! And believe it or not, I am still not finished! But, it's all worth it. I took some pics of the room today. I will take some more next week. But take a peak and tell me what you think? :)

More Photos here!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Meet the Wray Family!

This is just too much! I found this website,

Meet the Wray Family!

This is just too much! I found this website, Make Me Babies, where you can upload pictures of yourself and your partner to see what you're future baby may look like! You can even choose celebrities, too. So, of course, I had to do it and I uploaded a picture of Ronnie and me. I think they turned out pretty darn cute! The future seems hopeful! Meet the future Matthew and Annika Wray! :o)

Monday, August 11, 2008


Nicholas: "Chachi, don't take too long to come to Miami, Ok?"

Chachi: "*sigh*....But I don't have the money for the plane."

Nicholas: "All you have to do is scream "LEMONADE!" and that's how you can get money!"

I melted! *sigh*

Sunday, July 27, 2008

New Table Lamps!

I've been searching for over a year now for the perfect table lamps and shades for our living room. But I finally found them at Target! I think they were right under my nose, but I was being too picky. And they were at a great price, too! I think they are perfect and exactly what I wanted. Tell me what you think!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Heights, Heights, Heights!!!!

I got the tickets! We are officially going to watch 'In the Heights' and I am just beyond excited! yipppeeee! I even bought a special dress for this special event. It will be Ronnie's first theatre experience, too! He's making me go to a Yankee game, we then compromised on the theatre! I love being married.... compromising is grrreaaatttt!!!!! (I know he'll love it just as much as I will. Ok maybe half as much, but he'll like it...I know it!) And maybe, just maybe, I will enjoy Yankee stadium. But for the sake of my hubby's dream. This is his Disneyland. And I am proud to experience it with him. Awww! 10 more days and I am NY bound again!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Going Green

Go and buy this! I have been trying to buy non-toxic kind of cleaners. I think it's important to use earth friendly and healthy products in our home. And I am in love with the Method product brand. You can find it almost anywhere. But Target seems to have the best prices. I've been using the hand liquid soap and they smell delicious. Then I needed new wood polishing spray. And I decided to go with Method's and it's oh so yummy! For me, the smell of cleaning products is very important. And this one is a great Almond flavor. It's so gentle and sweet! So, not only is it non-toxic and made as a biodegradable formula, plus in 100% recycled plastic, it smells delicious! My wood furniture wasn't even left with streaks or any residue. It looks great! Go out and try it. You won't regret it. :o)

Go and explore their collection of cleaning products, plus kids shampoo, conditioner and body wash!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Farmer's Market

We are fortunate to have a local Farmer's Market near our house. We are always buying our vegetables and fruits for great deals and we love to just browse. During the Fall, there are pumpkins galore, honey, wreaths, crafts, just simple and pretty things. During the spring, there are amazing strawberries, daisies, and all sorts of seasonal things, fruits, and plants. We went today and I want to show some of the yummy things I saw. :o)
Peaches like I've never seen them before! Gorgeous and delicious!

Pretty Dahlias.

Pretty and delicious smelling Lavender.

Huge and scrumptious black berries.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Taste Of Summer

I marked the beginning of summer today by making freshly squeezed lemonade. It was delicious! It was an even combination of tanginess and sweetness. And it was simple to make. I always buy lemons for seasoning or just to put in our tea. So, I am glad I have found another way to use them. Here is the recipe so you could enjoy it, too!

Dissolve 1 c. of sugar in 1 c. of hot water
Add 1 c. of freshly squeezed lemon juice
Fill a pitcher with 4 c. of cold water
Pour water/sugar/lemon juice mixture into the pitcher
Add sliced lemon to the pitcher
Serve in a glass filled with ice

*Welcome Summer* Ahhhhh.....

Monday, June 9, 2008


Jackie and I in Disneyland celebrating 50 years!
Jackie putting on my garter on my wedding day. :)


I am just sooooo excited. I haven't really thought too much about it, because I've had so much stress and things to do at work. But school ends in just 2 more days, and Jackie will be here on Friday night! Yipppeee!

We have so much to catch up on. I miss my best friend. I've given some thought of what we can do, but quite honestly, Jackie and I can find something fun to do in just about everything and anything we get ourselves into. So, I don't have to worry. She's just a great friend who understands me so well. And not to mention how much we have in common. It's kind of scary if you haven't figured that out yet!

On Saturday, we are definitely going to a lake in VA. So, it will be fun in the sun. I also want to drag her to 2 fabulous malls I have not been to yet. And to Old Salem, which I am sure she and I will enjoy.

I am just looking forward to watching movies, and maybe baking and cooking with my friend in my own place! Ah! I can't wait!!!

I might even make her paint a room with me. But that's not important right now! hahah

See you soon Jackie. I love you!