Sunday, May 31, 2015

My May

I've been a little off the grid the past month. Truth be told I've felt a little uninspired. Also, I had finals and had to go to the uni a lot: for grading, for reviews and other academic commitments. I've been going to Veracruz and Mexico City. My cousin gave a me a 'key' to American Netflix, so... there's that (Thanks JR!).

So I've made a roundup of May events to show you what I've been up to. Here we go.

My BFF Wedding
One of my oldest friends got married at the begining of May, so naturally, A and I had went on the road to be there for her and Ale (her husband). The ceremony was lovely with them both coming up with their own vows (which isn't traditional at all in Mexico) and the whole place was decorated in a vintage style, which I loved. It was also a great time for us to catch up with my other bff who was moving to India a few days later to reunite with her future husband. Love was all around.

My birthday
This year I turned 30 (!!!) and got the royal treatment by A. Because we live far from our loved ones, he made sure my day was all sorts of special. He surprised me the night before with a gift certificate for a Spa Session at La Purificadora. He delivered flowers when I was away so that I'd be surprised by the time I got home. He bought me a beautiful present and took me to dinner somewhere we had been wanting to go in the longest time. He sure knows the way to my heart. I also celebrated with my friends on Saturday night with dinner at a new Chinese spot in Veracruz.

Mother's Day
For mother's day weekend (right after my birthday) we went home to be with our moms. My family celebrated with a small gathering at my aunt's house where some of the family was reunited for all sorts of take out and deserts.

Final Review
The semester ended and I had my students making maquettes of houses (their own design). Some were really good, while others didn't live up to my standards, but lucky for them, no one failed.

Anniversary Weekend in Mexico City
For our 5 year aniversary, A and I went to Mexico City. It was very short notice, so we couldn't get a room in our usual spot, but went with Gabs' recomendation for the second time. We treated A's brother to dinner on Saturday night to celebrate he's going to Chile for the Copa América (soccer) for work, and our aniversary at a spot we had been before in La Roma (I was bummed because they changed the menu and were no longer serving what I was hoping to eat). My bro in law got us a pair of Adidas Superstars and got me a pair of Adidas Ultra Boost for the gym, as a birthday present. On Sunday we walked to the Alameda to have breakfast at Hotel de Cortés, then to the Franz Mayer Museum and finally to Bellas Artes for a couple of expos we wanted to check out. Afterwards, we headed to Polanquito to La Lonja (which was kind of a disapointment as it was too small), got a cupcake at the new Magnolia Bakery and had lunch at Bello Puerto. It was a short but sweet trip.

Now that the semester is finally over, I'll have some more free time to craft around and hopefully write more. I'm looking forward to going home next weekend to surprise my parents and celebrate my brother's birthday and maybe even stay there for a week or so to catch up with friends and soak in my entire family before we are split again when Gaby goes to Orlando in July and Jorge returns to Playa del Carmen at the end of the week.

Hope your month was equally nice, and bring it on June!


Thursday, May 28, 2015

RPQ: Expectations.

Think for a second in what your life 'should' be. What do you imagine?  Is your life today the same as what you imagined?

As of earlier this month, I'm 30 years old (wow). It feels strange to write it, let alone to say it out loud. And I never thought my life would be what it is. If anyone had asked me 15 years ago what I had pictured, I would have said something different. I figured by the time I turned thirty I'd be married and maybe even had a kid. I thought I'd be living elsewhere, and that I'd be either working at the place of my dreams (wherever that was) or owning my own business. 

And a few years ago, I would have been VERY disapointed to see that my life wasn't going towards what I had imagined so many years before. But why should I be disapointed because those things didn't happen/haven't happened yet? 

Today, I'm thirty, I am not married, nowhere near getting pregnant and as of this month, unemployed, yet again. But despite the fact that my 15 year old self predictions expectations didn't come true, I am very happy. 

The truth is, we never know what is going to happen. We may have an idea of what we want in our career and in our personal lives, but my guess is, most of the time, we don't have (complete) control over it. Life happens, things change, and suddenly we find ourselves living the life we are given, instead of the life we expected when we were younger.  Now, there's nothing wrong with that, as long as we are happy.

But that's the thing with expectations. Sometimes we get caught up in what is expected of us, by our parents, teachers, family, society. And because of them, we become disappointed when we don't achieve those things, which we shouldn't, because the only expectations we should live up to are our own.

So hey, you are free. Your life is not 'supposed to be' anything, but what you want it to be. Don't let anyone's expectations determine how you should live your own life.


Monday, May 18, 2015

DIY Trays

Recently, I've become some sort of fan of trays, I know, I do realize it's a trend right now and there's a reason for that. But because there is no going to Target, Ikea or any other cool store where I can shop for nice trays where I live, I thought I'd make myself a couple. With a leftover box of Ferrero Rocher. Yes.

Here's what you need:
1 box of 24 pieces of Ferrero Rocher
1 or 2 sheets of  any kind of nice patterned or solid paper (I used tissue paper, that's why I'm recommending something else).
Contact paper
Assorted Washi tape
Double sided tape

First you need to eat all 24 pieces of chocolate. You can do it, I'm rooting for you. Then you're going to remove the plastic piece where the chocolates come. At the bottom of the clear plastic box, comes a squared piece of card stock (with nutritional information, logos, etc.) you need to hold onto. You will trace that piece over your chosen paper. Cut it with the scissors and put it aside. It will be a little loosen, which is ok.

Then you have to trace the same piece of card stock onto the contact paper. Once you've done this, cut it too and make sure both the contact paper square and paper you've chosen are the same size. It's ok if they don't exactly match. Now cut a few stripes (or triangles) of the double sided tape and paste them on the back side of the paper you've chosen. Then proceed to place the paper on one of the 'trays'. Now that it's been secured, carefully apply the contact paper on top. Be careful not to wrinkle the paper! (That's why I don't recommend tissue paper like I used). Like I said before, it's ok if they don't exactly match.

It's time to use the Washi tape. I chose a contrasting color (mint) to secure the paper + contact paper to the tray, by putting it along the sides of it and cutting the overlaps in a 45 degree angle and there you go! For the second 'tray' (the chocolate box' cover) I used a different pattern and also added a shape at the center using the same tape I used on the sides.

This project is completely customizable to your liking, easy, cheap and it took me like 20 minutes to make! But I guess that depends on how precise you are with measurements and stuff. I'm pretty obsesive and other than the fact the paper wrinkled I think they turned out quite pretty :) Another option is using the 48 piece box of chocolates for larger trays, which is something I'd totally be willing to try!


Friday, May 15, 2015

How I Became a Disney Cast Member

On May 9th 2005, I saw a flyer on the message board of the architecture building at my university. It was about the opportunity to participate in Disney’s International College Program. Needless to say I was thrilled. The flyer said there would be a meeting held somewhere on campus at a certain time and so I was ready to be there. I had class but was planning on ditching when my teacher arrived in the classroom and I was stuck.

By the time my class was over, I headed to another building for a different class, which happened to be the same building where the meeting was being held. I chose to ditch said class and went ahead to try and get into the meeting, when a French guy, Eric, stopped me.

-Where do you think you’re going? 
-Uhm… to the Disney meeting thing
-Do you have an appointment?

And so I panicked. I didn’t have an appointment. I had seen a flyer. That’s what I told him. 

I don’t know if he took petty on me, but he gave me a phone number and said to call some woman named Roxana. He said she would give me further instructions, whatever that meant. I went on ahead to class.

As soon as I got home, I called her. I mentioned what had happened earlier and then she started speaking to me in English, she asked me a few questions and gave me further instructions. I needed to write a cover letter and bring along a few documents to another meeting that would be held the next day at my school.

Looking back on this, I can’t believe I hesitated. My birthday had been the day before and my then best friend wanted to take me out to celebrate that day. I didn’t think I’d have time to gather any documents or write letters. Moreover, May 10th is mother’s day in Mexico, I didn’t have to go to school and my family was having brunch to celebrate, so the idea of going to bed late to do the things they asked of me and getting up early when I didn’t have to, really bummed me.

But it was Disney. It was the dream. And so I sucked it up. I went out with my friend and then I came home late and wrote a letter where I explained why I wanted to work at Disney. I gathered my birth certificate, High School Diploma and typed a Resume. I got up early the next morning and wore jeans, a stripped pink blouse and a navy blazer. Everyone else wore a suit.

That’s how I met Doris. She wasn’t wearing a suit either. We bonded over the fact that we were both underdressed for the ocassion. I remember her saying that we still looked polished even though we weren’t in suits like everybody else and that we would stand out because of that. Doris, always the optimistic fashion enthusiast. 

We were called inside by the same French guy from the day before. The Disney people showed up, did their magic and we were all in awe. There was a presentation, a pop quiz (I won a pen and a refrigerator magnet!) and then individual interviews. They would let us know in a few weeks whether we had been chosen, but I’m pretty sure you already know what happened :).

So that’s how I ended up working at Disney! I’m curious as to know how all my friends found out about it, as there were people from other cities there that day. It kind of makes you think that some things are just meant to happen to you. What if I had studied at a different university? What if Eric had told me I couldn’t attend the meeting the next day? I probably wouldn’t have found out about this program, spent my summer in Orlando and met a lot of great people, etcetera. 

Have you ever participated in a Disney Program? Which one? How was your process? I’d love to hear all about it!


Thursday, May 07, 2015

30 things

Exactly 2 years ago on my bithday I shared a post on my former blog about 28 things I had learned in the previous year*. Today I'd like to update that list as it is pretty much current and just add a couple more items to it. This is basically a translation from that blog post from 2013. Without further ado, here it goes:

1. People don't change. It doesn't matter how hard we try to make them. It is sad, but sometimes we're better off letting go...
2. Great changes are preceded by chaos.
3. You'll never leave where you are if you don't know where you're going.
4. Start before you're ready and if you don't know where to begin, begin anywhere.
5. Sometimes on the chase of a dream we get lost and find a better one.
6. Other times, the dreams that come true are the ones we didn't know we had.
7. Dreams don't work unless we do.
8. Nothing truly great comes easily.
9. When things seem complicated, look again, always look again.
10. The only expectations we should live up to are our own.
11. Remind yourself that it is ok not to be perfect. No one is.
12. What screws us up most in life is the 'image' of what 'it should be'.
13. It doesn't matter if I'm not out and about every weekend, as long as I am ok with that.
14. Best friends aren't always those you've known the longest or those you get to see more often.
15. Living alone is great, but it is not easy or cheap.
16. It is ok to spend money on things YOU enjoy, whether it is a CH bag or paper goodies for crafting.
17. If you don't feel right on your own skin, you can't expect others to feel right around you.
18. It is totally worth it having a job that makes you happy rather than one that pays the rent but makes you miserable.
19. Even when you don't get the credit you deserve, do not doubt your abilities or your work.
20. Without the support of our loved ones, we would be nothing (ps. call your mom and dad).
21. Distance can make the heart grow fonder, but it can also make people grow apart.
22. Even though we don't always express how we feel, it doesn't mean it is not there.
23. We don't need people's approval.
24. No matter how tired or stressed we feel, we are never to neglect those we love.
25. Professional success isn't measured by how money you make, just as personal success isn't about getting married or having kids. It is about being happy.
26. It is perfectly ok to demand what we think we deserve.
27. When you love what you do, you don't work a day in your life.
28. No matter how hard things are, we'll always be able to go throw them and come back stronger.
29. Go to the dentist regularly.
30. Take care of your body: exercise, eat your veggies, drink more water, get enough sleep.

Notice how those last two are health related? Man, getting older is tough! 


*Gummergal shared her list of 30 things she's learned before turning 30 on her blog. Check it out here.