I hope you enjoy my blog. I will write from a wide range of subjects from politics to fashion to family and food. But, primarily I will share with you my most happy and sad moments of my life that I enjoy embracing and sharing.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Dear Universe...

Dear Universe, I want to land the most amazing CONTRACT ever that allows me to get to my Secret Board $$$$ amount :-)  I also want to travel across the world specifically to Japan, China, France, Spain, and Morocco. I want to open up my own little business right in the middle of my hometown. ALSO, I want to meet other go-getters like myself and CHANGE THE WORLD!

Lately, I have been most of my writing ideas at night before I head to bed. Lately that has not been happening. I have an item on my to-do list and I have been rather procrastinating. It is VERY HORRIBLE of me. But, I am determined to get it down tomorrow maybe or tonight even.

I strongly believe in the law of attraction? Do you know that is...??? Let me help you. Watch this short youtube clip...the wonders of youtube! I make specific to love, lol I know don't judge me but it makes my point.

So, I always keep focus on what I want and I want the Universe to Listen to me.  I just have this feeling that I am almost there! I am halfway there I just need to be fully there. Have I mentioned, I love getting older, wiser, and beautiful.

I think this is enough for tonight. Goodnight!

Peace and Love

Thursday, January 16, 2014

The Challenge Begins at Golds Gym

Since I started the challenge at Golds Gym in Pharr (I got suckered into this since I am visiting family) I have been doing so much cardio. I weighed in on January 13, 2014 at 4:45pm. I got my weight assessments done and my photo taken for our before and after pics.  I am rather enthusiastic about this cool adventure. This will be my third attempt at trying to bring my weight down. Looking back at past attempts I can conclude that I kinda lacked a little enthusiasm and I didn't break out of my comfort zone. I did same routines, walking for an hour and that was it.

As a result, I have a personal trainer in Austin Texas - Jessica is awesome! and I have a trainer in South Texas through my challenge! Since I travel a lot I can't have excuses anymore. This year is my year to shine. I can't wait to show off my hard work on my body. I can't wait to take that after pic and everyone will be OH MY GUR! - I am ALREADY sexy I will be more than that! A Beautiful, Intelligent, Sexy, ALL NATURAL Successful Latina Woman. Loud and Proud! Having said that I came up with a goal of working out at least twice a day. I started that yesterday and I plan to keep doing it.

One thing is for sure, I am determined to clean up my health act. I want to live to be 100 years old and I can only be there if I take care of myself. I don't want to be 60 years old and suffering from medical conditions. I want to prevent as much as I can so that I may live life. But, it isn't easy it is very difficult. I kinda shock myself when I say that because I am a woman who has accomplished so much in such a short time. As a colleague said to me, Mari you attained a Masters degree, I think you can do this. That comment in itself just inspired more and motivated me that I have had challenges and I overcame them and challenging myself to be healthy should be a piece of cake.

Peace and Love.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Happy Birthday to my Daddy-O!

Today is my Daddy-O's Birthday. He is the most important man in my life. God blessed me with such a caring, loving (in his own special way) and more than anything alongside with my mother, a best friend. He has been by my side through all my life's adversity and always share's his wisdom with me. All of me is because of him, my mentor, my father. Happy Birthday to my Dad! I thank the Lord Above for all the Joys and Blessings.

I am one of four children, the baby. Spoiled? Not gonna deny, my dad always made sure I had a smile on my face. He is my inspiration to doing the best I can do each and every day. In one word my father can some me up as "Industrious." He is right.

He is a tough man. Short of words. Man of Actions. He is stern in his words but shares his knowledge and his experiences with me. I am who I am today because he was tough with me. At an early age learned that no one will do things for me and I will have to take care of things on my one.

First lesson, I was about 19..."Dad my car won't turn on, I believe it may be the battery...." he replies, "well go get a new one." Yup, at 19 I bought my first car battery and installed it myself! Can you believe that. Now, looking back, I know he did it all with good reason.

So on this day, I am thrilled to be able to take him out to dinner and enjoy some good laughs at the dinner table. Thank you God for blessing me with such amazing parents, my best friends. But today I am blessed to celebrate his birthday - oh yeah, Happy Dance!

Peace and Love 

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Relationships: My First Love.

Since my blog is a little bit about everything I'd like to talk about my first love. Those who know me very well know him. You all know how much I loved him with all my heart, unconditionally. At 31 I can I understand the meaning to love unconditionally.

We met when I was in highschool. He was about two or three years older than me. My cousin was dating his neighbor and they thought we would be perfect for each other. I was shy then. I was very naive, sheltered, conservative. My parents were hard core when it came to me and dating and how a woman should be behave.

He had my heart. I can even remember how he told me he loved me. The first and last time I ever had a guy or man (whatever you wanna call them) tell me he loved me. We were talking on the phone during our late night talks. I lived in an old wooden home then, I was like 15. We were talking on the phone and I had this joy in my heart and I recall whispering to him that I think I liked him...he responded with "I don't" lol, it was kinda funny I felt like holy moley! Then he followed it with, "I think I love you." My heart melted, my heart began to beat as fast as it could. From then on we were inseparable.

He was the love of my life. Tall, dark and handsome. He always surprised me with gifts. We had our Friday movie nights and dates. Since I was raised very traditional with conservative values, I was always home no later than midnight. Our relationship lasted about 8 years, it began when I was a month or two shy of 15 and he was 17. We did almost everything together. I supported him in everything that he wanted to do. I wanted to just be the best girlfriend ever.   I got to meet his family and they made me and included me as one of the family.  We were both deeply in love with one another. He had his ambitions and I had mine, my education. Upon graduation of highschool he proposed marriage on me but my father declined the proposal. He told him he had to have something to offer me. Three proposals later I was engaged and to be married on February 17, 2004 I think. I had a nice fancy ring that I loved playing J. Lo's Jenny from the Block song. It was so me.  With all the happiness and joy we had things just got different.  As I matured, our relationship began to take different turn. I mentioned I was naive right?  Well, in every relationship there is always a downfall...

The guy I loved with all my heart, the guy that I was about to spend the rest of my life with had cheated on me. The betrayal was beyond hurtful. Obviously, our engagement was broken off. I would have been 9 years married to date. Thank God! You see, it was the most painful part of my life. Loving someone with all my heart and to be living in a lie. Marriage is sacred for me and to know that my future husband could be unfaithful to me before marriage I only saw misery in my future.  Years after I tried to heal. To be honest, I had just began the healing process in 2008.  It took me being the bigger person to forgive him. He broke my heart in to many pieces that I felt like there was no way in patching it back up again.  I can't seem to understand why he did what he did. I was the perfect woman, loved him and I did not just say it I showed it. I have forgiven him in 2009 and I  have peace in my heart.

Today, I find myself understanding my failed relationships. My faith in God keeps in me optimistic but like any woman we are always trying to understand whether it was something we did or could have done better. Men these days do not have appreciation for women. Our world lacks gentlemen. But there is one thing for sure, I had experienced what love is and could be. I know now what I don't want but what I need in my love life. God knows the desires of my heart and I pray each day that he blesses me. With that, I have to be patient. I have to trust that the Lord will bless me. I am certain that he will because it will take a special kind of man to be with me - a beautiful, assertive, loving, caring and ambitious woman. Women, don't lose faith in love. Look at me. I dedicated most of my young life to a man who could not love me as much. But I am optimistic that I will walk down the aisle one day in a beautiful gown. I promise you will too.

Peace and Love.

Thursday, January 09, 2014

I am not Fat but Fabulous!

I am going to talk about a very sensitive topic...my weight gain. Yes I am going there. For the past four years I have been unable to lose weight. It didn't matter on my food intake or exercise I tried everything. Up until last year I kind of gave up. I didn't go to the gym at all did some walking. I am not sure what depression is but I think I may have gone through it. After being told by not one but two men who are a disgrace to the male race that lack respect for women, called me FAT! Yes. They did. It didn't hurt, I did try to understand why but I had to see beyond their name calling and realized that I DID GAIN WEIGHT.

I have a personal trainer that to be quite honest has not given up on me. She knows I am on the road and busy and she keeps me motivated. As I got home for my days events and my Gym workout at Golds Gym I have in my inbox a message from her. First I had to see this video:

Then she followed it with:

When you watch this video, it puts things into perspective. Everyone has their own story, their own goals, and own obstacles to overcome. His story is proof, that we cannot place limits on what we are capable of doing, because we often do not know our own potential. Neither Arthur, nor Dallas knew what he would go on to accomplish, but this video speaks for itself. In less than a year, Arthur completely transformed his life. If only he had known what he was capable of, 15 years earlier.

Do not waste any time thinking you are stuck - you can take control over your life, and change it faster than you might think.

You see I have so much self confidence and never in my life had I encountered someone calling me a name because of my weight. I guess people never mature. Oh and I did give him a piece of my mind.  But now, I am at a point where I need to challenge myself to finally overcome this challenge of weight loss. I used to be thin, a nice size 10 a 12 the most. Now, I am beyond a size 14. I never thought I would be in this place. It kinda is not a good feeling. I finally am going to make myself, my health a number one priority and I have to make it part of my priorities. It was easy for me to dismiss it for the past year but not anymore.

Oh and note to men: Please don't call women FAT or anything close to it. They don't deserve it. Plus, beauty is not defined by the pant size of a person. I know a lot of people who result to plastic surgery as their way of dealing with their weight. I refuse to do that. I want to work at it. But, its hard enough as it is so the name calling needs to stop.

I can't believe I just shared with you this little piece of me but I just couldn't hold it in anymore. This is my third attempt and I am determined to get back where I need to be.

Photos of me in Morocco 2009. The beginning of my weight gain immediately after a legislative session.

Since then this is the most recent pic of me to date as of November 30, 2013 and Dec 31, 2013.

Its not a full body but it will do for now. I will be posting before and after pics once I get my physical assessment done with my trainer after Jan. 13th, 2014. I will post a more decent before pic.  This is a journey for me but know that my spirit is happy, I am happy and I am determined. I got this. Know that if you are struggling with a challenge similar to mine, the hardest part is taking the first step towards a positive change. Trust me, it will get better. It takes one person to believe in you, let it be you.

Peace & Love

Tuesday, January 07, 2014

2014 Register to VOTE!

Other than being a hopeless romantic I love POLITICS! Its just fascinating. So, now that we are in 2014 elections are around the corner. Since I am a native of Hidalgo County here are some important information you should know.

Voter ID is now in effect in Texas. Photo identification will now be required for voting in person, as per a Supreme Court decision which upheld the Voter ID Law requirements earlier this year.  A voter will be required to show one of the following acceptable forms of photo identification at the polling location before the voter will be permitted to cast a vote:

  • Texas driver license issued by the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) (most common form of photo identification)
  • Texas Election Identification Certificate issued by DPS 
  • Texas personal identification card issued by DPS
  • Texas concealed handgun license issued by DPS
  • United States military or Veteran Affairs identification card containing the person’s photograph
  • United States citizenship or naturalization certificate containing the person’s photograph
  • United States passport
Are you wondering IF you can register to vote...this information from the Hidalgo County Elections office website says: 
You are eligible to register and vote if you are:A) a citizen of the United States,
B) a resident of Hidalgo County,
C) at least 17 years and 10 months of age and you most be 18 years of age by election day,
D) not declared mentally incompetent by a court of law.
E) not a convicted felon, if so convicted you have:
1) fully discharged your sentence, including any term of incarceration, parole, supervision, or completed a period of probation ordered by any court; or,
2) been pardoned or otherwise release from the resulting disability to vote.  

For more information, contact the Elections Department at 956-318-2570.

Sunshine in my Life through the lovely Andrea Sloan

Everyone goes through life meeting many different faces, establishing strong friendships and relationships through those we encounter. I for one have been very blessed to have shared days in my life with someone I met through a wonderful amazing woman I like to call my angel, the lovely Michelle W. You see this is the memory I will forever have in my head for as long as I live.

I was legislative staffer for about 9-10 years. I had the opportunity to meet many influential individuals and many executives and many consultants.  They witnessed my work ethic, my character and that says a lot about who I am. In midyear 2012, I was preparing to close out three offices, manage a committee hearing and maintain the responsibilities of a chief of staff. I did it all! As others in the industry determine where they will work next, I had no time to think about my next employment.  I did know that I wanted to pursue a career in the lobby world or private sector. I had so much institutional knowledge and a good network that it was the step I needed to take. Well, my angel set me up with a very wonderful man looking for someone to work with him. I was blessed, I had something to fall back on with all the rucus going on in my life. Through all of that, I met her amazing best friend, Andrea Sloan. Seeing their friendship and how connected they were to each other made me feel very blessed to even witness it and take part in their joyous friendship.  Little did I know Andrea was fighting for her life. We got hang out at Paggi House one day, her birthday I believe. She was wearing a superwoman cape and she def was a superwoman. We had small talk on the men in my life. Talked about relationships. It was nice.

I value good friendships and relationship so much. And I can't express how deeply saddened I was to hear of her passing as I spent time with family in West Texas. Remarkable people and women like Andrea are very rare. They are special, they leave imprints in peoples lives, they make a difference, they are fighters, they are just amazing. Andrea was my sunshine. She reminded me to live life, not hold back and enjoy every minute of every day. God has his angel with him. You can know more of her story with this video by KXAN.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Texas Advocacy Project or to the “Moon Shots Program” at MD Anderson Cancer Center in memory of Andrea Sloan.

Peace & Love

One Proud Aunt

So, I have five wonderful nieces and nephews, two boys and three girls. Well my eldest nephew Sean will be auditioning for The Voice in Nashville on February 2nd. I can't express how excited and nervous I am for him. He has always had some sort of musical instrument in his hands since he was a baby. He also learned to play the piano at a very early age. There is def love for music in our family. Through him I have a greater appreciation for it.

When he decided to sign up to audition, it simply was very random. He registered Nov. 2013. Now the day is slowly creeping up. I can't wait to see him and spend this special moment with him. He is becoming a young man now. He is in his first year in college and I will be getting a special tour of his campus.  Now you may be wondering how does he sing? Is he good? Well here you go folks...enjoy! He wrote this song about a year and half ago for Guitar Center's Songwriter Competition. He didn't win but it is still a very lovely song.

Please help share his Youtube song "One More Dance by Sean De Leon" and I will def keep you all updated on his status.

Peace & Love

Monday, January 06, 2014

New Years Post! Yay 2014

What can I say to start off this post...HAPPY NEW YEARS! The New Year we all reflect, at least some of us do, on what we did wrong in 2013 and how we can do it better. Let see, I dated a jerk then so no more jerks for me, haha. That's one thought but since I am a pretty optimistic gal and very ambitious I wrote some things down myself. Overall, I just want to dedicated myself to family, career and life. 2013 was a year of firsts for me. It was also the year that I failed to keep a consistent exercise routine. I don't eat a lot for those who do not know me. I am a socialite. SO I LOVE FOOD, DRINKS and GOOD COMPANY! but who doesn't?

I learned a lot about myself in 2013 as well. I learned that I can keep setting goals for myself and accomplishing them. For 2014 I have decided to step out my comfort zone and dream BIGGER! I def want to meet Oprah for SURE! I have had two dreams about her. In my first dream, I dreamt that she was in my little country home, in the kitchen sitting down and talking with me. I was cooking for her. I can't remember what I was cooking but she was sitting in my little country kitchen table and just waiting to see what I had prepared for her. We talked, laughed and told me that she thought I was one amazing woman and that she had to meet me. I woke up that day as if I had met her in real life! I then had another recurring dream about her, same, similar but this time it felt like I had to put it on my secret board to meet her in person. I really want to. I want to share with her my story, my love story as well because that says a lot about who I am especially my upbringing. 

I traveled the state before the new year came around. I spent it with family, more specific my bro and his family in West Texas and I am glad I made the trip out. I get so caught up with my work and priorities that I fail to put my siblings and continue to make memories with them a priority. I am a family girl so this aspect of my life is very important to me. My nieces and nephews even asked if I can see them more often. So, I made a promise and I will follow through. My eldest nephew has also asked that I spend time with him so I am def doing a lot of traveling and especially get to visit some of the Food Networks food stars travels like Guy Fieri and Adam from Man vs Food. My Mari vs Food adventures will def be taking on outside of Texas restaurants.

Oh and if you don't remember from my last post, a guy who is not important today said I was, "FAT" yes, he said that. Didn't really hurt my self-esteem but he did make me reflect on my health goals and plans. So, this year I have hired a personal trainer to get me where I want to be fitness-wise. My trainer is AMAZING! and I am so excited to share with you my transformation with her help, because I need it. So, stay tuned. I intend to blog more so than ever! So follow me :-)

Peace and Love