Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Law school widow


This is the first thing I heard when we decided law school it was and I looked online to see what to expect so to say I was slightly worried was an understatement, I was full on worried about what was waiting for me.

I knew I would not be seeing Jon as much as I was used to running a pizza store together and all but I was excited nonetheless with the prospect of my husband getting through this and us at some point being able to be somewhat financially stable and by some point I meant a long time from now but that's how things in life work. Nothing worth going for is easy a fast.

Now that I have been here for 4 months I can attest to the fact that this is not for the faint of heart and to top it all off we are doing it with a 4 year old. Honestly at times I think we are completely insane for doing this but some day I will look back and think differently and laugh, hopefully.

We are living in a HUGE city where people are not friendly. I get it trust me everyone has a life to live and is so busy with work, raising kids and what nots so making friends or hanging out with people is not that important.

I wasn't aware of the fact that most people are not crazy like us and are not married let alone have children so yeah we look pretty weird being married and having a child. Most people here are also super young like 25 and younger which makes it hard for me to relate.

This had left me feeling super lonely and a bit crazy.

Imagine being with your child 24/7 every single day for 4 months and not getting a break. Yeah that wears on you. I love my child and all but oh good Lord it is quite something. Jon and I in those 4 months have had only 2 dates and a few hours where he got to go out of our apartment with us. So I am pretty much on my own out here.

My only haven is the fact the we go down to his families on the weekends and I get to actually talk to adults and they talk back to me and care about what I have to say, if it weren't for that I would be completely insane by now.

I think I was spoiled in my little Utah bubble that I had created and I know that it took me a long time to create so that could happen here but I had my family close by, my cousin who is also my best friend just a few minutes away. I had really good friends just a few blocks away and good neighbors that liked me and talked to me. If I was ever in need of anything I just send a text and within minutes someone was at my house, I miss that so much.

I miss Bentley having friends to play with on a weekly sometimes daily basis, I miss my mom coming over to clean and cook for me, I miss getting hugs from her, I miss my brothers coming over all the time for me to feed them or for a chat or to sleep over and play with Bentley, I miss knowing where everything is, I kinda miss hearing the cows and dogs barking at night, I just really miss a lot but that is no longer my life and so I need to move on but some days are hard being out here on our own with no one to talk to.

The hardest part of law school so far has been feeling lonely.

Well with that said I am hoping next semester will improve for Bentley and I. Maybe by the grace of God we can find some friends here or something.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

The people of Los Angeles

Honestly I have never met such unfriendly people.

Don't get me wrong I have found some friendly people who will talk to me but for the most part people are not friendly.

In Utah if I was out and I smiled at a mom they normally would try to make small talk, not here. They look at you like you are crazy or something. Even the mormon moms, trust me I can spot them from a mile away and I know they don't think I'm LDS because I don't look like it I am sure but hot dang why are people so unfriendly here?

I am used to smiling at people and that is not going to change people I love people, I love smiling at random people and making them feel good because when someone smiles at me it makes me feel good and I want to do that to people.

The other day at the park I finally had a mom talk to me and be nice and she has been living in LA for 10 years and told me not to expect too much. She said people here are not out to make friends plus they like to stick to their own groups. She told me at her son's school she asked a mom about getting their kids together for a playdate and the mom told her "no, thanks" she was shocked. I was shocked as she was telling me this.

Oh and whatever happened to teaching your children to be nice to others? Because I guess parents are forgetting to teach their children that. I've had kids punch Bentley, push him, ignore him, tell him to go away, scratch him and tell him they don't want to play with him. Really? Not that I am a great parent but that stuff would not fly with me at all and Bentley knows that. We treat other people how we would want to be treated.

The other day while at the park Bentley wanted to play with a group of kids that were already playing they told him no and ignored him which broke my heart but what can you do as a mom. A mom (the one that talked to me) went and told her son if Bentley doesn't play neither does he so the other boys let Bentley join them. After a while of playing Bentley and one little boy started talking and running and were playing really good together. They went by the swing and here come big old meanie pants and pushes Bentley away and pokes him, well I am mama Bear to a tee and I lost it. I yelled at this boy to never lay a finger on my son again and how dare him think that its ok to push someone else. I probably made a full of myself cause I kept going on and on about how he was a mean, rude little boy who was never going to have friends, anyways......DO NOT mess with my boy or else you will have to deal with my wrath. Mind you I was loud enough that whoever this little boys parents were for sure heard me but don't think for a second that any parent got up to see what was going on or said anything.

Now I understand why there is so much prostitution, drugs and gang activity going on in this city because children are raising themselves. There is no one there to correct them or lead them anywhere. Parents here in Koreatown do not care about their children and it's really sad to say thing because I am hispanic but all of the children I witness that are like this are hispanic. Where are the good hispanic moms? Probably not living here but man it's so sad to see this type of behavior I used to think us hispanics were different.

After this weekend I have realized that there is no way in Hell this boy of mine is going to public school. He will get beat up on the daily just because he is an easy target because of how sweet and tender he is and I am not ready to have his little spirit be tore down just yet. After a day of him crying to me and asking me why people are mean and don't like him I have had to tell him that if someone is mean and treats him bad in any way he should respond in a mean way because clearly that's the only way these children survive here.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Amanda came to visit

The second I moved to Los Angeles I told my friends that they were more than welcomed to come visit me whenever they wanted to. I didn't think anyone would since everyone has their own lives to live and things to pay for. However my friend Amanda whom I have known and loved for the past 16 years  had already come to visit me once in Utah and almost immediately asked if she could really come visit. I of course told her yes and within the month she had some dates set. I love this girl so much and I know whenever she comes to visit it always a fun time because she does not like to just sit around, she likes to get to know a city in a very short time. Since I barely know Los Angeles I knew it would be a blast having her here because it made me feel a little safer, two crazy women are better than one.

She came in on a Tuesday morning and we were off to explore LA so off we went to The Original Farmers market which I had heard good things about. Even Jon's aunt used to go to it when she lived in Beverly Hills and my other aunt used to come with her old boss for lunch so they told me great things about it. It was pretty interesting, I had never been to anything like it. Very cute but very pricey and I don't do pricey as of right now. Then The Grove is right next to it which is a very popular mall out here, it's where all the movie stars go and get photographed at. I didn't see any paparazzi that day so no celebrities must've been there. We ate lunch there and Bentley ate a highly priced cookie. The Christmas tree was ginormous at the mall so we had to take a picture with the huge ornaments.

From there we left for Malibu. I had been wanting to go hiking near the coast to a place that had a view of the pacific coast and most of the hikes are in Malibu. It was a beautiful drive down the coast. On the way there we got to see a scene for a movie being filmed on the coast, tons of production vans and cameras plus police stopping traffic while they filmed and the actress was covering her face with a hat so we weren't able to see who it was. We finally got to our hiking spot and made it up to the top which gave us an amazing view. Honestly I kinda wish we would have stayed to watch the sunset up there. it was so peaceful. I was proud of my little man for making up there with us.

The very next morning we woke up nice and early and left on a hike while Bentley slept with Jon. I wanted to take Amanda on a hike where we could see the Hollywood sign since you have to see the sign if you come out here, it's a must. We found this one hike spot where they found a dead body a few months ago so I was kind of scared to go but when we got there it looked so safe and not scary, not that I would ever do it by myself but lots of people on the trail. This hike was no joke though, my butt got an amazing workout that's for sure and Amanda is in amazing shape plus she has long model like legs so yeah I was probably having to work harder due to my short legs. I almost quit a few times but once we got up it fell pretty good and going down was a breeze.

The next day we drove around ALL of LA looking for souvenirs and I came to the conclusion that doing that is not for me and not for LA. Parking here is very, very expensive more than it is in Philly or anywhere I have ever been to. So I ended up doing a lot of drive-bys and coming back around. We did drive past Skid Row which I wanted to do but didn't want to do it by myself and can I just say it was heart breaking. Skid Row if you haven't heard about it is a section on a street that runs a few blocks that is packed with homeless people, prostitutes and drug dealers. I knew it wouldn't be pretty but I figured during the day it can't be bad. My heart breaks for homeless people but nothing prepared me for seeing small children in line for food outside the homeless shelter and that's when I decided I had seen enough of Skid Row. We are so lucky even on our worse day we are lucky. I'm trying to teach Bentley this concept. I then took Amanda to our favorite place in LA which is Glendale we found this cute Vietnamese restaurant that was just beautiful, they had a huge wall of greenery which made it feel like you were in the forrest. Later that night we hit up the Griffith Observatory which I went to 5 years ago the day I found out I was pregnant with Bentley so it has a special meaning to me. She loved it and we got a great view of Los Angeles. By the end of the day we were all pooped out and ready for bed because it had honestly been the longest day of my life, it felt like.

Thursday I had planned to go up the our family's lake house but it snowed up there and I don't do snow driving on a mountain. So we had to come up with something to do with our day. I chose to take her into Beverly Hills because every tourist should drive down Rodeo Drive. I wasn't sure she would like it but she loved it and loved seeing the beautiful houses. We got to see paparazzi which is always fun and interesting. From there we went to Hollywood walk of fame where they have the stars of famous people. It goes on forever and you get to see a lot of interesting people and shops. Bentley was over the moon because we got to see a transformer and Iron Man, Iron Man alone made his day. Glad I got to go with Amanda and experience that with her because it sure made it easier and made me feel safer however I'm not sure I'll be going back any time soon as the parking was out of control expensive.

Her last day with me before she headed to her other friends house was her birthday so I wanted to make sure she had a great morning. We again woke up super and headed out to the pacific as she wanted to do a hike that had a waterfall. She had found the place she wanted to go so off we went and it turned out to be in one of the nicest neighborhoods around there so I felt pretty good but the second we got on the hike itself it looked a little bit sketchy. There was graffiti everywhere and very wooded and kinda gave us a weird feeling so we turned around pretty quick. She still wanted to go on a hike and I knew of one that had a pretty view so we went and did that one which was pretty short because the farther we went the more we saw animal prints and they were not of dogs so I was getting worried as I hadn't brought anything to protect us with. After that small hike I took her to our favorite little beach just to show her and walk around but it was super windy and really cold so we didn't stay long. I wanted her to be able to find some shells and take home but for some reason this time there were none that we could see. 

I truly had the best time hanging out with my friend and staying up late talking and laughing, remembering our childhood and teenage years which were both rough for us. She has turned into an amazing person and I am so proud to know her and have her in my life because I know all of her struggles and I sometimes wonder how she made it out.

Now it's time for someone else to come visit me.......I am trying to convince my brothers but so far it hasn't worked.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

November was busy

The first part of November flew by, I got back from Utah on the first and we have been busy on the go ever since.

The first part we got to go to an italian festival which we truly enjoyed, specially Bentley. We spend a lot of time in the desert that first part which is always a blessing for me and what keeps me sane with our crazy life. Bentley gets a lot of attention from everyone which I am grateful for. It's always perfect temperature in the desert to take Bentley out on a ride around the neighborhood to feed the ducks.

While in Los Angeles we got to go to the Natural History Museum on their free day and I love that place, just so beautiful inside and out and feels like a safe haven from the craziness that goes on just near it. We played tons on their water feature then got so go see some real life animals that they have in there then we got to walk the rose gardens at USC which are beautiful and a must if you are ever near here. We also got a few playdates with Bentley's friend, one day we hung out at the Roxbury park in Beverly Hills which was new to us and actually really cute, quiet and clean, another day we got to go on a hike and explore a canyon near Topanga Canyon. I really enjoy the outdoors so this nice weather has been really nice and being able to get out of the city has become one of my favorite things to do.

Then we had my friend Amanda come visit me all the way from Philly and that was just a blast..........

Saturday, November 2, 2013


How my boys loves this day, it probably is one of his all time favorite days in the whole entire year.

This year he had told us a while back he wanted to be a Ninja Turtle so we were all game for that however every other child in America had the same idea, at least thats what it looked like. At the beginning of October when we normally buy his costume every Ninja Turtle costume in his size were gone and the ones left they were selling for $60 and that's where I draw the line. There is no way on earth I am spending $60 on a Halloween costume that will get one day use for a few hours at that. So I became mean mami and said no. His second choice was heat blast which is a super hero from the show Ben-10 which he is obsessed with. When I saw the price on that one I was one happy mama. So heat blast it was for Halloween and I think he looked mighty fine.

He have always celebrated Halloween at my sister-in-laws every since Bentley started going out for it so this was the whole reasoning behind me going to Utah. We would like to keep that tradition as long as we possibly can. Bentley had so much fun going out with all of his cousins to go trick-or-treating. This was actually my favorite year so far. Thank goodness we normally only last an hour maybe so we don't get too much candy.

Bentley and candy do not mix. So I normally only allow him to have a few on Halloween night and they I hide the candy and only allow him one a day. I know I'm horrible but this child has the worse teeth ever and going to the dentist is pricey so I gotta be mean.

By the 31st I was really missing Jon, it had been 3 weeks since I had seen him and my ride back had now pushed going home for another 5 days so I freaked out and told Jon to figure a way to get me home the very next day cause everyone was starting to get sick and I was worried of catching something or Bentley getting sick and I was home sick already. My husband always comes to my rescue and I was back in California the very next day by noon.

We had a great trip back home but we are never going back for that long, the longest I can be gone from my normal routine is 10 days before I start to go all crazy. I enjoy having a routine.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

October comes to an end

These are just random pictures I got on my phone while we were in Utah. It was a very long three weeks but honestly worth it since I do not know when we will get another chance to go back. I knew I wasn't going to be able to go for the holidays so this was my way of making up for it.

My plan was to stay with my mom for 2 weeks but after 10 days she came down with some  horrible sickness and out of fear Bentley or I would get it my father got us out of there ASAP so that meant we got to spend more time at my sister-in-laws which is always a blast but my heart was sad. I really wanted to spend that time with my mom and Bentley didn't even get to give her a hug or kiss goodbye cause I could't risk him getting sick like that.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

We went to Utah

We took a 3 week trip to Utah and it was so nice but way too long. It seems every time we make it to Utah we end up sick or something bad happens. Not kidding. Last time Bentley and I got horrible allergies which ended up as pink eye. We first went to my sister-in-laws house and hung out with her for a few days which is always so nice to get to talk to her and hang out. She is superwoman with 3 small children and everything she has to get done in the day I am not sure how she does it all. This is why I only have one. My two request were first I needed to have some Rita's water ice which is part of my childhood in Philly, I was one happy girl and the other one was that she needed to drive me through Provo Canyon which is where Jon and I took our engagement pictures so it a special place for me. It really is a magical place and when I get to Heaven that's what it will look like. I just love seeing all the yellow leaves and white tree trunks. Bentley and I got out and took some pictures which came out pretty cute but pretty quickly after that he started sneezing and I knew that was it. this boy is allergic to something up in those Utah mountains. Thank goodness I had some Benadryl for him and he wasn't down for too long.

Then we headed to my moms and got spoiled by her with cooking every meal for me and playing with Bentley and letting me sleep in. It was heaven. We also got to have two playdates with my really good friend Ashley and Bentley's best friend Brae. These two are just so stinkin cute I swear. I cannot get enough of their cuteness when they are together, they act like an old married couple for sure. We also got to see her new baby girl Reese, we had already met her in July but just for a few minutes and she has gotten so big and Bentley is loving babies so he got to hold her this time around. I really miss being back in Utah and having my family close by and having friends I can count on for anything and children for Bentley to play with. 

On Sunday after church my dad took us all to a park to go on an afternoon stroll which was a blast. A river runs right by it and its just so peaceful. It's the same park I used to take Bentley to when he was first born. Brings back good and bad memories of those times. I sure do love Utah but California is also so magical. We had a good time with family and friends while back in Utah. It's always a good time when I go back.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

First half of October

Can you believe we were still going to the beach in October? This weather is really spoiling Bentley and I. Once it drops below 70 we are wearing winter clothes. I'm sure our Utah friends and family would laugh at us. 

We got to meet up with some friends at the beach and had a blast. It was a new beach we had never been to called Topanga Beach and we fell in love with this place. It has free parking plus it secluded which I liked cause not too many people were there. The kids got to run around nonstop and play in the sand and rocks. We spend almost 5 hours at the beach with the kids. 

Some of the other things we got to do before we headed up to Utah are in the pictures below but I'll explain: mom-mom came to visit for the day and we ended up at the Los Angeles temple which is beautiful and it felt pretty calming inside the visitor center, Bentley likes to fall asleep in weird places, Jon, Bentley and I got a family picture taken that actually turned out good, our Philly cousin who I love to pieces she totally gets me probably has to do with the fact we both grew up in Philly, cousins playing games on the iPad, took Bentley to the kid museum and he is such a silly kid, more from the kid museum, do you see superman doing his thing? yes my child is crazy, and last check that smile I love this boy to pieces.

Then we were off to Utah for 3 very long weeks.........

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Childhood friendships are the best

Early October I got a message on facebook from a childhood friend whom I had gotten back in contact just a few years ago. The day I found her online I was so excited. For years I had wondered what had happened with her and her family. 

Her mom was truly an angel send to our family when we first moved to the States, she got us registered for school and took us to all of our doctor appointments to make sure we had all the vaccines needed to go to school. She translated for my mom any time my mom needed her for something. She was truly God send and I know my mom feels the same way. This lady had 3 daughters at the time one was an infant, one was a year older than me and one was 2 years younger than me. We all clicked and became good friends. 3 years later they moved to Indiana for work and I remember that being one of the saddest things I had experienced up to that point. I cried for days and tried to stay in touch but back then it was hard so we lost contact. 

So when I found her online I was super excited to see how life was going for her. I hadn't heard anything for about 14-15 years. She had 2 beautiful little girls.

Anyways fast forward to me getting her message on facebook where it said she had noticed we had moved to California and that she was in the area and wanted to know if I would like to meet up. Immediately I was jumping from excitement. Meet up with an old friend who I loved dearly? Of course I was up for it. I send her my phone number and we made plans to meet up at Knotts Berry Farm. 

Seeing her was like we had never missed a beat, felt so natural. How I love when that happens. I feel like we were meant to be friends and one way or another I was going to have her in my life. Her husband was really nice and her girls were so good with Bentley. He fell in love with them. I got to go on some roller coasters with her older girl which was a blast and I would have never done by myself but I couldn't say no to her sweet face. 

It was a bittersweet meeting though. My friend Nicole was diagnosed with cancer a few months back and she had just finish her last round of Chemo. Breaks my heart to see someone so amazing have to go through such a hard trial but I know the Lord has a plan for her and she will beat this. 

To be honest I fell in love with her little family and hope to be seeing them again soon. 

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Till we meet

Jon's grandma whom we loved dearly passed away on the 25th of September. Exactly one year to the day of his grandpa passing away. 

I know this must've been a sweet reunion for them both. We also know she is no longer in pain but it is always hard saying goodbye to a loved one.

I was worried about how Bentley would take it as this is the first person that he was really close to who has passed away. Bentley was able to create a great bond with his great-grandma even though she couldn't speak, he loved her so much and always run up to her first thing to give her a hug and a kiss.

The day of the funeral Bentley said he wanted to say goodbye to grandma. 

I grew up in a country where death is not hidden from children. If it happens you are there and you witness everything. One of my earliest memories is my grandpa's funeral when I was only 4. I still remember all the men in my family taking his casket from my grandma's house to the cemetery. I still remember we sang "Oh my Father" and how emotional I was about it. In Costa Rica when people die at home they are never taken to a hospital or anything you die and your family dresses you they have the casket brought to the house and the viewing is that same day and you have to be buried within 24 hours so that you don't start to stink. So really there is no time to think about what the children might see or not.

So anyways me having been brought up that way when Bentley said he wanted to say goodbye to grandma I wanted him to have that closure even if he is only 4. I waited till Jon got to the funeral home to talk to him and Jon was on board with me that Bentley gets to make his own choice about this. I knew Bentley didn't really understand what was going on but I didn't want him saying to me that I didn't allow him to see grandma one more time. He got to see grandma and say goodbye which made him really emotional and he probably cried for a good hour but he has to learn these things happen, right?

Anyways grandma's service was the most beautiful service I have ever been to. She gave her own eulogy. A few years ago our cousin made a video of her telling her life story and we thought no one will be able to do it like grandma would. What a very special woman she was to so many. 

Friday, September 27, 2013

Preschool update

Preschool is going good!

I gotta say I never thought I would actually be able to pull this off and actually do it but we have a pretty good schedule for the most part.

We are really enjoying taking out books from the library and reading them. Bentley will now ask me to read him books and we are up to about 4 books a day which is so nice. I want my boy to love reading books as much as Jon and I do.

Whether or not Bentley is learning is another story, hahaha. I'm sure he is learning some things but this whole letter recognition thing is pretty hard. He is better with numbers and shapes. We are making progress with coloring, he is getting pretty good at it and doesn't complain as much about having to do it. He really loves doing crafts though for the most part which is nice.

I love taking pictures of out preschool days because its so cute seeing the things this boy is able to make and seeing him writing or glueing or doing the work. 

Little by little we are making progress and hopefully he will start being able to memorize the letters.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013


In all honesty I feel like I am on survival mode here.

Having no friends and no adult to really talk to sucks.

My husband doesn't count because if he is home he is always studying and cannot count on him for anything or bother him.

Now I knew this would be hard because I am not young and naive and I have learned that nothing in life worth while is easy but some days it still takes everything in me not to throw myself a self pity party.

Its interesting how much I really miss having someone I can talk to who is going through the same things I am and understands me. Here I do not have that.

Thank goodness on the weekends we head to our families house and then I get some adult time but during the week it's a little bit hard and is taking some getting used to.

I have figured out that in order for me not to feel sorry for myself I just need to go out on a daily basis and it doesn't matter where I go as long as I am out of the house for a few hours it makes the world of difference.

At first I thought depression might be creeping in due to my energy level being so down but after talking to my cousin who is a doctor I just think it has something to do with a vitamin deficiency or something like that.

Bentley has been all on his own taking out his guitar about 3 times a week and trying to play it and he has now learned how to hold it the right way. I have looked into guitar lessons but he is too little they tell me and most people won't give lesson till he is at least 6. On days where I am just really trying to survive due to my all time low energy I make a fort for Bentley and make him some yummy treat and have him watch a movie under there, he loves it and I probably should do it on normal days cause it is fun and I remember doing that as a kid too. 

We have started going to storytime at the library which is fun. Another one of our go-to activities is going to Barnes & Nobles and letting Bentley play with their train set. The boy never gets tired of it and will sometimes even beg me to take him. So what is do is get a book sit down on the ground and read while he plays, its super relaxing. I have also found that the moms that do this with their kids too are normally pretty nice and have given me a lot of tips on things to do for free with Bentley.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Natural History Museum

Every Tuesday this month was free admissions at the Natural History Museum which is at USC. I had been wanting to go but it normally is too expensive after paying for tickets and parking so I was so glad I found out that we could go for free.

Bentley is very much into dinosaurs so it was the perfect way to spend an afternoon there. I was expecting it to be small and boy was I wrong. This place is HUGE! We walked for about 3 hours and didn't get to see everything. 

We loved the dinosaur exhibit's, all of them. I was surprised at how into it Bentley was. He couldn't move fast enough between the dinosaur exhibits because he just wanted to take everything all at once. He had never seen or heard of a woolly mammoth until this trip and was so intrigued by it. The other animal he really liked was the ostrich, couldn't stop talking about it.

I do not like ostriches because they are mean animals. As a young girl in Costa Rica I saw them chase some kids and the fear on the kids faces was enough to scare me for life. Now that I am an adult I realize that they were probably being protective over their babies or something but I still don't like them so it's funny that Bentley is so into them.

We really had a good day here.

I so badly wanted to go and walk around the gardens at USC cause they looked beautiful from what I could see but when I said something to Bentley about it he wanted nothing to do with it unless he could pick flowers. I guess I will have to do that another day.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Our dates

In trying to keep things fun and exciting Bentley and I met Jon for lunch one day at our favorite restaurant near us. They were having a lunch special and we couldn't pass it up. We do love our time with Jon because it is rare that we get his full undivided attention since most of the time he is studying or reading something for school. 

Law school is no joke and now we totally understand why they say DO NOT work your first year of law school. After school Jon studies for about 4-6 hours every single day and that is including Saturday. His only day off is Sunday and that's mainly cause that's when we are driving back from the desert and do our shopping for the week and he likes to watch his football. 

Since we don't get to hang out with Jon too often Bentley and I are joined at the hip. Thank goodness we have trained the boy well cause he just rolls with the punches for the most part. We often go get treats and have our own little dates and they are the best. Probably the one thing I look forward the most towards. Bentley found our favorite bakery owned by Armenians and let me tell those people know how to bake, holy cow. Everything we get there is a piece of art work and tastes just as good as it looks. Will for sure be taking anyone that comes visit us there. 

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Zimmer's Museum

Being in a new city and a huge city at that, with no family or friends around can be hard.

Quite honestly I am struggling most days.

With a boy as energetic as Bentley and not having someone for him to play with can be overwhelming at times. 

Since getting here I have done my fair share of internet research into finding things to do with Bentley that will be safe, fun and cheap.

Good thing about LA is that they have a lot of free things to do with children. We still have a list of things to try but with a city this size you have to drive a lot and with out budget being so minimal we try to keep out outings close to home most days. 

My uncle has been worried about us not having anything to do out here so he found a kids museum and told me about it so I googled it and read the reviews and after a week or so finally got to courage to head to it. Its not too far from us but traffic here is ridiculous so it takes us about 15 minutes to get there but they have free parking which is super nice for LA, parking here is the big problem and a big expense. 

It was a little bit pricey for a one time visit but we had plans on possibly getting a year membership which was pretty cheap in comparison to other museums. 

I wasn't too impress specially coming from Utah where we have some pretty amazing kid museums but Bentley was in kid heaven. He played so hard. they even have an hour where they do crafts with the kids which was actually really nice and Bentley enjoyed it so much. 

At the end of our day he met a little boy his age and they played really well so the mom asked for my number so we could try and get together with the kids which was so nice to see that someone was willing to do this cause up to this point mom's have barely spoken to me.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Family day at the beach

Jon had a day off from school due to a Jewish holiday which I was so grateful for.

Thank you Jewish holiday! I hope there are more to come.

Jon woke up early and headed to the library and studied all morning long so he could get his work done before heading to the beach with us after lunch.

It was such a beautiful weathered day at the beach. 

We got to play in the sand, jump in the water and walk the Santa Monica Pier.

Jon loves the ocean and goes out far swimming which gives me a mini heart attack because God knows I cannot do that without drowning. I can swim but not that good. Even Bentley was a little nervous about his papa going out so far.

We really had a good day and ended things by sharing a banana split at the ice cream place on the pier. 

Friday, August 30, 2013

Santa Monica Beach

I love this beach. I have heard people around say that it's dirty and too crowded and not as pretty as other beaches but in all honesty I am not sure what people are talking about. It looks clean enough to me and I go during the week so it's never crowded when I go. There are bathroom nearby and lifeguards all over plus the police comes and does rounds every so often do I feel pretty safe which is important when I go by myself.

Bentley is totally content playing on the sand the whole time, barely gets in the water which makes it nice for me since I'm not freaking out the whole time about him possibly drowning. 

Growing up in Costa Rica and only 30 minute drive from the beach we went often but we were always warned by my mother not to trust the ocean, it would betray you. Because of this the ocean has always scared me so in my whole life there has only been one time a long long time ago when I actually swam in the ocean and rode the waves but during the trip people were getting stung by jellyfish and that was enough to cure me of ever really wanting to go back in the water. I will I only go up to my knees and that it. 

Jon is convince on teaching Bentley how to body surf so I am sure eventually I'll have to get in with my boy but for now I'll enjoy my peaceful time at the beach. 

Wednesday, August 28, 2013


These are some pictures of the park we found within walking distance in the middle of Koreatown. We love this park!

Its normally pretty quiet until about 3pm when kids get out of school so Bentley doesn't like going early too much but I am glad to have the option of walking here. They have gym equipment that here and tons of grassy areas if you wanted to have a picnic plus they have tennis courts and a baseball field.

We did make a friend which is always nice for Bentley. This little boy goes there every day with his mom in the afternoon. His mom brings different toys for him to play with other kids. On this day the brought a soccer ball which Bentley loves so he had a blast running around kicking the ball. He had some rosey cheeks by the time he was done playing, always a good sign.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Fun day with mom-mom

My mother-in-law came to visit so we wanted to show her what we do on Thursdays, which is hit the library, let Bentley play there and then head to the mall and let Bentley do some more playing in the playground. Thursday's are fun around here. 

Thanks to my awesome friend who grew up in LA I was able to find this awesome library that's got two floors and the second floor is all about children. They have tons of toys for them to play with and books galore. The good thing is there is always children around so someone will for sure play with Bentley which just makes his day.   

I always have a good time picking out books for me to read to Bentley during the following week. The librarians here have been so amazingly sweet and helped me out so much and they already know me, ha. I am becoming a nerd but I am okay with it. I just now need to start getting a book for myself every now and then. 

After the library we head to the mall which is within walking distance. We got some frozen yogurt at Pinkberry which was very disappointing. I remember it being different back in the day. Plus it was so expensive, so not worth it when you can go to any of the other frozen yogurt place and pay for two what you pay for one there. Oh and I have to tell you Bentley is normally very polite in the sense that if he smells something funny he quietly will ask me what it is and he will just keep quiet or if someone looks different he will ask me quietly. Well when we get into Pinkberry these two guys came in right behind us. They were either Indian or middles eastern and my understanding is that people from those countries sometimes bathe in oils that to Americans don't smell good but to them they do, at least that's what I had a neighbor tell me once when I asked him why he smelled. All of a sudden Bentley plugs his nose and says "mom what is that smell, it's gross" I try to ignore him but it gets worse and louder. I tell him he sounds like a pregnant lady and then he gets mad and says "mom don't tell me you don't smell that, I could choke up". I knew the whole time it was these two guys but I didn't dare tell Bentley out of fear he would say something. Finally these two guys left. Made me feel bad but not much I could do. 

This made me think of my friend from high school who was suspended for 3 days for bringing in deodorant for some girl she though smelled bad and when the deodorant didn't work she brought some Victoria secret spray and sprayed the poor girl down when she walked by her. She said she couldn't take the smell any longer. 

Anyways after eating our super expensive frozen yogurt we walked over to the playground and let Bentley play with the kids there. It's very common for playgrounds in this area do not have mulch but beach sand and Bentley can't get enough of it. 

Then my mother-in-law took us out to dinner at our favorite Korean BBQ place, yumm and for desert we treated her to the boba place where they have the yummy Korean deserts. We really had an awesome day. Wish she could come once a week. 

Monday, August 26, 2013

Relaxing weekend

On Friday afternoon I got to hang out with my niece while Bentley played with his friend Ellen, which was really nice. We also had movie night which is always fun and relaxing. This week we watch  Mud and I actually really liked it. When it was being explained to me I didn't think I would like it but I was pleasantly surprised. 

Have you heard of Lowes build and grow program they have for children? Honestly best thing ever and where has it been all my life. I heard about Home Depot having a program similar to it from my sister-in-law and got Bentley all signed up for it at Home Depot for the next 3 months but was curious if Lowes had it and they sure do. Not only do they have it once a month but they have 2 different activities in the month and 4 different dates to choose from. This month was all about the movie Planes and I knew Bentley would love it. We had a good time hammering away and building a plane which Bentley named "Francesco" and no one can tell him that it's real name is "la chupacabra" funny kid. I will be doing this with Bentley on Saturdays from now on. If you have a free saturday and have little ones check this out in your area its free and you get to take a "toy" home.

Saturday afternoon Bentley had another play date with Ellen which basically lasts all day long so I invited my sister-in-law to come with me to the spa to go in the steam room with me. We got my wonderful mother-in-law to watch the baby and off we went. It was heavenly to be able to take a long shower with no one calling for you or trying to join me. I got to wash my hair and put some oils in it and go sit in the steam room for a while. It was so relaxing to be able to sit in quiet for a little bit and to be able to talk to my sitter-in-law and catch up with her. It was rejuvenating and so needed. On our way home from the spa, we were walking and we noticed it was drizzling and then it started to rain a little bit harder but people we are in the desert so it never rains and when it does it goes away quickly. I ran to the closest tree near us for cover but it was not stopping so we decided to just run to a little hut they have at the golf course and wait it out there but by then we realized we just needed to jet home as fast as possible. We were so soaked at one point we decided to just enjoy the rain and take pictures. I always have a blast with my sister-in-law she is so down to earth and funny.

Later that night we went out to celebrate my brother-in-law's birthday. Jon and I took a picture together which never happens so even though we both don't look that great I had to post it on here cause they are so few and rare.

Really one of the best weekends so far since school started. Oh and to top this awesome weekend I finally learned to crochet, hallelujah! It's only taken 4 people trying to teach me till I finally got it.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

First week of preschool

Our letter this week was the letter A.

Bentley already kinda knew the letter and is pretty good at writing it. I had 4 books to read throughout the week. 

Our schedule goes as follows:
    Monday-letter introduction along with music videos about the letter of the week
    Tuesday-letter of the week along with some math
    Wednesday-geography, we study a state that starts with that certain letter
    Friday-arts and craft

So on Monday's I have him watch a clip from sesame street with the letter of the week, then we listen to songs that have to do with the letter. He really enjoys this, after that we do a little scripture study which is interesting having him ask me question about Jesus. Tuesdays we go over the letter and trace it on the iPad, then I take out our numbers page for him to trace over the numbers and count. Wednesday we go over different states and he is trying to remember the state bird for each state, so far we have Alabama and Alaska memorized. Thursday we learned about air and read a really cool book. I can't remember the name of it but it had some experiments for children to do to understand what air is. Then Friday we so arts and craft that start with the letter of the week. This is our short day.

If he is able to do everything we need to for preschool after lunch we get to go do something fun afterwards. Last monday since it was our anniversary we didn't do anything fun but after dinner he got to go to the corner store and get an ice cream bar. Tuesday we ventured in Santa Monica which was heaven. I now understand why people pay the crazy amounts of money to live here cause it is so nice living 20 minutes away from the beach. Bentley is in love with the beach, its like he was born to live here. Wednesday we had movie day after preschool. Thursday was a big day since we had my mother in law come visit us, she came with us to the library we go to and then we went to the mall and let Bentley play at the playground for hours, we got frozen yogurt and had a ride on the trolley, it was really a fun day. Friday we do preschool and then packed up for the weekend.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Preschool has started

In light of the fact that we are broke and cannot afford to send Bentley to preschool as it cost $400-$600 a month around here, we are doing preschool at home. Plus I am refusing to send Bentley to public school in this area, it's scary, so I might as well get on a schedule we will most likely be doing kindergarten at home unless he can get into a charter school.

My boy is growing up so fast makes me a little sad.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Our 7th wedding Anniversary

I can't believe I have been married to this amazing man for 7 years. He has been the answer to many prayers not only by me I am sure. He walked into my life at a moment where I needed him. I am pretty sure God send him my way because he knew that Jon would be the only person equipped enough to deal with me. 

7 years ago his aunt turned her backyard into a magical place full of all the colors I wanted. She truly turned the place to something out of a magazine. It was the wedding I never thought I would have. 

I had only known my husband in person for a total of 2 months when we were married and I am sure everyone thought we were crazy and that it wouldn't last but we have made it work. We have had to work at this and it ain't easy let me tell you but it's worth it. 

In 7 years we have: 
    lived in 2 states
    6 different cities
    owned 6 cars
    had one child
    owned a pizza restaurant
    stopped going to school
    Jon went back
    got his bachelors in Economic's
    applied and got into Law school
    started law school
    I learned to cook and enjoy it
    learned many hard lessons
    have realized what things are really important to us
    what we want for our future
    became best friends 
    know each other better than anyone else knows us
    love each other more than the day we said "I do" 
    we have grown together

On our 7th anniversary Jon had school so not much was planned plus we are on a really tight budget so  I couldn't plan anything amazing like I wanted to but we have many more years to come where I can hopefully plan something big. I went out to some Korean markets to try and get some meats and things to have a Korean meal since I know that's his favorite but after going to 3 different stores and leaving empty handed because I don't speak korean I decided we would be using our woohoo money for the week on dinner. We already found our favorite Korean restaurant so off we went to go have korean BBQ and it was amazing. They already know us so they bring us out our favorite things. After dinner Jon treated me to some korean deserts which were to die for. All in our we had a good day and so grateful to be in this crazy ride called out lives with him.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Happy 30th

Happy 30th birthday to my one and only love!

He is getting old that's for sure.

We had a great weekend with our family in the desert and we got to celebrate Jon's birthday. We went out to dinner and after dinner we came back to his aunt's house for cake and ice-cream and she had the whole place decorated for his birthday. I know it was a big birthday for Jon, turning 30 is a pretty big deal.

I am so proud of this man and everything he has done in his 30 years on this earth. I am truly lucky I get to call him mine for eternity.

Funny thing: Bentley has a really hard time whenever it's anyones birthday, he gets really sad and doesn't like wishing anyone a happy birthday. He has told me that it should be his birthday every single day of the year. The kid is funny. Can you tell he is an only child?

Well my man is now 30 years old and we have started a new chapter in our life starting law school. The next 3 years will be hard but so worth it in the end and by end I mean in 20 years when we are hopefully done paying off a mortgage or what a mortgage would be.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

First full week in LA

We survived our first week in LA and I am so proud of myself. I was a little depressed and sad at the beginning since I was feeling overwhelmed and lost in this huge city. Even though I grow up in Philly I have been living in Utah for the last 7 years and that had made me too nice of a person. You can't do nice here.

While walking around I have seen a few things that seem weird to me. The first thing was while we were walking around the neighborhood I kept on seeing public pay phones which I have not seen in years. I thought these things no longer existed but I was proven wrong they sure do and some even work and have the directory book hanging off of it. Pretty awesome stuff. The other different thing I have seen is amount of trash just in general everywhere however the one thing that made me the saddest seeing tons of trash on the playground where children play. Broke my heart that people are so careless and ungrateful for the things that have been provided to us citizens and that people would treat it so crappy just goes to show the kind of people living around here. I have been driving around and seen people throw bags of trash out of their window car are they are driving. It's quite shocking but I guess normal for here.

Our first official day in LA our aunt and uncle took us out to Korean BBQ which is our favorite thing about living here. It was delicious. Our second day here we decided we needed to find a Mcdonalds since that was always my savior in Utah on a rough day. We walked about 10 blocks in order to get to one and it was a cute place but very different from any Mcdonalds I have ever been to and to top it off it had no playground, booo. There is another Mcdonalds closer that I have found and has a playground however I checked out reviews as I have figured out that's how I will survive living here and this Mcdonals is a big no no.

By Monday morning Bentley was going crazy being stuck indoors and with no plans of going out. The night before I had read a few reviews for the parks near us. MacArthur Park was a big fat no. If you want to be entertained for a few hours just look up the reviews. Those reviews are for reals about this park. I checked out another park and that one didn't seem as bad, it had some okay reviews and some bad, I had decided I would visit as a last resort type of thing. By Monday morning Bentley had gone into full on whining mood and I figured "dodging bullets" as the reviews had put it sounded better than sitting at home. Of we went, from far away it looked nice and so I was hopeful. We get in and there was a skate park which was nice, it had basketball courts and a playground. As we made our way to the playground I noticed I was the only woman in this park and Bentley was the only child but I didn't think much about it. Then I see an older homeless man and I smile at him and said good morning. Big mistake! That was enough for this homeless man to follow me, he started having a deep conversation with me about raising children. He was so close to me I could smell alcohol on his breath, then he showed me he had no teeth. I kept on trying to get away but he followed. At first he told me he wasn't a homeless and just came to the park to lift up the homeless and I believed him. However when I asked him his name he told me it was Testament "like the final testament" and that he had been send here by God as the final testament to preach. That's when I realized there was some type of mental illness going on. Thank goodness right then Bentley told me he needed to go pee so we left the playground and this old man left us alone but by then I was just wanting to get out of this park. The playground was so beautiful however so amount of trash was shocking and quite frankly I was scared of finding used needles or used condoms there so as soon as I saw the old man get far enough away I left the park as fast as I could. I got home and felt down the rest of the day.

On Tuesday I had to go to the office to get something and I told them how I was looking for a playground nearby. They immediately told me not to go to any park around here and that I shouldn't even walk outside by myself because this is not a great area. Then I see my neighbor and he tells me the same thing. Well that was enough for me to have a self pity party. If you know me you know I do not do well staying indoors, I need to be outdoors and have something to do every day. I called my aunt and talked to her and she made me feel a whole lot better.

The next few days we just had some lazy days where I just let Bentley watch way too much TV as I tried to keep busy cleaning or looking up things to do in LA. We watched tons of movie on our bed while eating popcorn, made pizza for lunch, jumped around, played with puzzles and legos. On Thursday we went outside for about an hour to play catch but that was on school grounds where there are security guards walking around everywhere.

By Friday I decided it was time to brave the outdoors again for the sake of our sanity. We walked a few blocks to a frozen yogurt place which was heavenly. The people were so nice they all smiled at us, it was a very much needed smile. Bentley and I sat there for like an hour eating our frozen yogurt while talking and watching people go by. After that I got enough courage to go check out another park about 6 miles from us that a lady had told me about. From far away all I could see were tennis courts but once you got up into the park it was the most beautiful scene I had seen in days. I was so happy I jumped on that bouncy floor for a good 2 minutes. Bentley ran and jumped and played and we swung on the swings it was the best feeling ever. We only stayed for an hour since we needed to get back home to back for the weekend.

We survived our first week and even found a nice park nearby, hallelujah!!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Last week in the desert

For our last week in the desert I wanted to make sure we had a blast and that it was a memorable one for Bentley.

So I took him to storytime which was so much fun, I now wish we had been doing that all sumer long but oh well. We also hit up our favorite spot which is Barnes & Nobles kid section, they have a train set our for kids to play with. We normally go there at least once a week, the summers here are hot so you have to figure out things to do inside to survive because sometimes even swimming is not fun at all. One of those really hot days he wanted to go on a trike ride so off we went and he showed me how he can ride with no hands. Silly boy, he was so proud of himself though. Another night he became a ninja turtle which just means you will be getting beat up on. He also got to hang out with uncle Paul a little bit extra which makes my heart happy. This is one of his all time favorite people I am so glad he has such a great man for Bentley to look up to. Then on Friday he got to go on a date with Meme, I think all his dreams came true that day. He was the happiest boy on the planet. 

Honestly, I am a little sad we are leaving. Having lived out here with Jon's family has made me that much closer to then. They have treated us like their own and have helped us out with anything that we needed help with. They have given Bentley more attention than I ever expected. have loved my boy with all their heart. I am truly lucky to have them around. 

Friday night we started a new tradition of movie night as a family. We all meet up at our aunts house and watch a good movie and talk. It really is so much fun and it now gives me something to look forward to for Fridays.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Moving to Los Angeles

This first picture has nothing to do with moving to Los Angeles but it was taken the day before and I wanna remember it forever because this boy is so silly. I say lets take pictures and he immediately starts making funny faces. He really cannot take a serious picture most of the time because he really is a silly boy who makes me laugh all the time. These are the faces I see on a daily basis around here. I could be having a bad day but if he starts with his silly faces my day has been made and he knows that so we just don't have too many bad days unless he is throwing a tantrum. I thought we were over those but we our crazy life I guess its just to be expected with all the changes that have happened in the last 3 months.

Ok now about our move.

August 3rd we woke up packed our aunts car to the max and headed to LA as early as possible. Our aunt and uncle offered to watch Bentley for us while we went up to LA since we were coming back that same night cause Jon still had one more week of work. Mind you up to this point I had only been in LA once before and the last time I hadn't really paid attention. We hit traffic which Jon said was nothing compared to what it could be but to me it seemed like a lot of traffic.

We get to our apartment which we had never seen before because when he came up last time it still was being build. I was truly impress at how cute they made the place look. The apartment came furnished which was amazing. It is a very small apartment at 490 square feet but the lay out makes it not seem so small. It truly is perfect for us.

We got everything in and organized. Then we went and walked around the town to see what it looked like. We are right in the middle of Koreatown which felt like home to Jon since he served his mission in Korea. This area is actually kinda scary but more on that later. We then went out to look for some Korean BBQ. If you don't know what this is look it up and find a restaurant near you ASAP. It will change your life forever or at least it did mine.

We found what I believe to be the best restaurant in Koreatown for all you can eat BBQ. The service was amazing which I was grateful for but more than that their side dishes had the things I enjoy and I was able to ask for more at any moment and they would bring it out.

All in all we left LA feeling pretty good about the move and excited for the following week when we would be officially moving in with Bentley and bringing the rest of our stuff.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Quick trip to Utah

We ended up  taking a very short very last minute trip to Utah. 

It all started when I called to switch over our car insurance over to a California policy. When they wrote our new policy I was red flagged since my license had just expired. So I was not put on the new policy and had to sign some paper work stating that I would not drive the car. So this really sucked since I am very independent and like to go as I please and do whatever I want that will make my day fun. The next day I made it over to the DMV and asked what I would need to show in order to get a California drivers license.

Mind you when we left Utah our plan was that we were moving to Texas so I knew we would be going back to Utah to get all of our belonging. So I wasn't too worried about bringing any documents with us. Silly me. 

The one paper I needed to show in order to be able to get a license was somewhere in our storage unit in Utah. I looked up how to get a replacement of this paper and immediately found out it would cost $345. 

So long story short. I wasn't born here and didn't become a US citizen until 2010. I needed to show my certificate of naturalization to proof I am here legally. Had I know this paper was so valuable I would have brought it but I didn't.

So I get started with the process to order the replacement and its asking me for the certificate # and my green card #. Who knows where my old green card is and how am I supposed to know my certificate # since I am requesting a new one because the other one is not with me. Anyways we called up an immigration attorney and turns out in order to get those numbers from immigration you have to go through an attorney. It can take a few weeks for them to get it and then to get your replacement it will take up to 3 months. 

I didn't have 3 months to wait, specially since we would be living in a new city away from everyone we knew. So the decision was made that we would be going to Utah to look in our storage and try and find it.

I have never prayed so much in my life. I think I have everyone I knew praying for us and fasting. 

Lets just say prays work and they are answered daily in my life. My brother found the paper within 5 minutes of being in the storage unit. I was beyond myself, really. I hugged him and kissed him which he hates. 

We ended up being in utah a little over 48 hours since Jon was missing work and we needed that money.

In our short visit we got to see my cousin the first night and hang out with her which is always way fun. Bentley loves her. The next night we got to have dinner with our friends the Hardy's. We miss them dearly, she was my saving grace up in Utah and always came to my rescue. Bentley misses his bestfriend Brae so bad he often talks about her. Then Wednesday we hung out at my moms for part of the day and then we headed to my bestfriends house Jen who was one day away from giving birth. I am so bummed I wasn't able to be there for the birth but at least I got to see her. Then we headed to have dinner with Jon's sister, mom and kids. Bentley got to hang out with his favorite cousin those 2 are inseparable. When it was time to say goodbye many tears were shed, mostly by Bentley and his cousin. I think by them he had realized that he was no longer going to be able to see his cousin as often as before. It is pretty heart breaking but that's life.

We had a good drive back where we talked about our goals for the future, about keeping a budget and what it would look like about how we are going to pay off the major debt we are about to take on and about what we want for our little family. I do love long rides for that and especially long rides on caffeine they help you really think things through.

So as we left Utah we said goodbye to the last 7 years of our life. We had some really good times and memories and we had some really, really bad times that I wish I could erase from my memory but probably best I don't so I can have a reminder of where we were at one point. Coming into California we said hello to the next phase of our lives. What lays ahead we don't know but we are pretty excited and hopeful. 

Life is pretty awesome even with the not so happy memories you just have to look at the positive in it all. Sometimes its really hard to see the positive but if you look hard enough you can find it, trust me I've had to look really hard at times to see the positive in a not so good time and there have been times when I just realize that at the moment I will not know what the point of it all is but that some day I will look back and be able to recognize what the good in it all was.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

The rest of July

The rest of July was a little more relaxed than the beginning of it.

Bentley started his second round of swim lessons which he loved and has gotten so good at swimming. I am one proud mama. He just catches on to things so easily.

We mainly hung out at Meme's house and started doing some school work which he actually really enjoyed. We did a lot of swimming, bike riding, going on walks to feed the ducks and running around the golf course.

One day we woke up from a nap to it being really dark outside when I looked out the mountains were on fire. It's crazy how fast a fire can develop. The fire went on for about a week before they had it under control. The winds were bringing all the smoke and ash right to us so our cars were filled with ash and just walking outside you felt like you might end up with cancer. The smoke from it completely blocked the sun for at least 5 days so we had some very gloomy days.

One Sunday Meme send us all to Chuckie Cheese which was a blast for the children. Bentley loves that place but I am sure all kids do. 

We also spend our last few days with my dog as the apartment we had gotten didn't allow pets so she will be living with my mom.