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The Struggles of an Eternal Optimist

I am an optimist. An Eternal Optimist. Corny translation: I’ve got sunshine on a cloudy day. I try to see the silver lining of every cloud. I could continue with more cliches but you get my point. This doesn’t mean that I don’t have bad days, but I try get over them quickly.

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I will forever see the good in someone even after I’ve been burned. I guess, to some people, that makes me foolish, but I don’t feel that way. I don’t just hope for the best, I expect it.

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Island Girlfriends

I was always a tomboy. Growing up with a brother who pushed my limits, I always felt the need to compete. My brother, Sean, is 3 years my senior and I looked up to him and wanted to be just like him. If he climbed a tree, I had to climb higher. If he rode his bicycle, I had to ride faster. I didn’t always succeed, but I tried. My mother would try and try to no avail to keep me in a dress and inside the house playing with dolls and tiny china sets. I wanted none of that. I constantly fought the double standards and my parents soon learned that I was an equal opportunity child. If Sean did it, why couldn’t I? After many scraped knees and broken bones, I think they were resigned to the fact that this was me.

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Yo Tengo un Amigo

My husband, Shyam, and I went to Cuba on our honeymoon in 2011 and it was an amazing experience. Given that it is more accessible than ever, it’s a fine time to document our trip. Cuba is a massive island with a lot to experience. Since the country has been frozen in time from the 1960s, it’s easy to imagine just how beautiful it was in that time. The old buildings (often dilapidated) and the old cars offer a certain charm that helps to make Cuba magical. Given that it is a communist country, the censorship and the feeling of big brother watching you was very real for us during our stay. One of our taxi drivers looked over his shoulder and spoke in hushed tones when he spoke about his desire to leave Cuba-although it was just the three of us in the car. The movies we watched were edited and there was no available Wi-Fi anywhere. There was a lot of poverty, which in turn, makes people hustlers. By the end of our trip, we were tired of people trying to hustle us into buying something – cigars especially. I’m sure a lot has changed since 2011 but it was eye-opening. All things considered, we had a great time.

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Sunset on the Malecon

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Self Love: To My 16 Year Old Self

 

I watched a heartwarming  video on Teen Vogue’s website of Tracee Ellis Ross talking to her 18 year old self, since she has just graduated high school. In the article, the writer, Jessica Andrews, says that Tracee is “one of those rare actresses who feels like your best friend in your head, even if you’ve never had the pleasure of meeting her in person.” It’s weird but I can identify with that in a non-stalker kind of way. lol

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Aysa, Island Life, Kai, Love, Uncategorized

My Evolution as a Step-Parent

I had a 6 year old daughter at 22 years old. No, I wasn’t a teenage mom. Shyam had a daughter and she became mine. As was expected, it wasn’t all coming-up-roses right from the start. I had to gain her trust and respect. I got the “you’re not my mother” speech more than once and I was confronted with adolescent moods all of the time.

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Before I met her, I thought that the world revolved around me. Literally. At least, my world did. And here I was face to face with a little girl with a big personality. She was here to test me. She taught me to be selfless. She taught me to be patient. She taught me many things about myself. And after many trials & tribulations, she made me a better person. She prepared me for motherhood. On top of all that, she has no idea what she has done for me. (Well maybe now she does :P) Having this girl in my life changed me.

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Toddler Life Lessons: It’s the Little Things

I sat watching my 2 year old ride his bicycle around the yard. He was screaming at the top of his lungs. It’s what he does these days. It’s his thing. I feel the need to document it, because honestly, I don’t remember what his thing was a month ago. People with children keep telling me, “It goes too fast.” It surely does. It seems like it was just yesterday that he fit into the crook of my elbow and I marveled at his small size. It’s amazing how much has changed. He has such a personality. While the terrible twos can be exhausting, especially with his defiant nature,  I try to pause and relish in him. We laugh, dance, snuggle, and act downright silly. I am recapturing my childhood through him.

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#bikelife =)

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Fitness, St. Maarten, Uncategorized

Fear & Loathing with My Trainer

If you’ve ever seen Eddie Murphy’s comedy special Delirious, you would have seen a segment that he does, in which he explains how a child feels after he’s been disciplined by his mother and is sent to his room. While he has unconditional love for her, he stands behind the door and says “God please kill her” with a laugh. After I work out with Dayana, I think about this skit and how much I hate her and love her at the same time. She laughs it off and says that if I didn’t hate her, she isn’t doing her job. I also hate her because she is right. Nevertheless, I hardly miss a day and I love it. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m lazy and not all that into fitness, but working out with Dayana makes me feel strong and accomplished.

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After workout…still smiling (barely)

 

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Carnival, Island Life, Rum, Travel

♫Leh We Dance♫

I stepped up to the exit Immigration Officer in St. Maarten. She said, “Girl, where are you going?” Unable to tame my smile, I replied, “Trini Carnival!” She then said “You are gonna be on Team No Sleep”, and with that, the adventure began. For every Soca Lover/Island girl, Trinidad Carnival is the dream: The Soca Mecca.

I waited on LIAT, anxious for its arrival. Given their notoriety for being delayed, I wouldn’t condone missing my connection. Luckily, the flight arrived on time and we left shortly thereafter. I was dreading the many stops on LIAT to get to Trinidad; however, I was lucky to meet a very nice Antiguan, named Misty, who helped me keep my sanity. The Caribbean is full of warm friendly people. We chatted about the differences between Antigua and St. Maarten. She told me that this was her third year going to Trinidad for carnival and we were both excited of what was to come: Bacchanal! After we arrived, we exchanged information and I promised we would meet up at one of the fetes. Given that I was lucky enough to be accompanying my husband, Shyam, on his trip for the Angostura Global Cocktail Challenge, I was ready for the trip to start.

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