On July 12, 2014 I was in my first ever marathon, the LoziLu Women’s 5K Mud Run for Children’s Cancer, here is my experience…
I have posted in the past about this but I think it’s time for an update.
No matter what your status or the company you keep,
there is always something to do in your area. I hear it all the time from fellow New Yorkers…
“there’s nothing to do in New York…”
Or something along those lines.
If you have children click on the following link for FREE stuff to do in New York this summer…
If you are part of the single crowd check out an app called Meet Up. It’s cool stuff to do in the city based on hobbies, sports, entertainment and more.
If you enjoy social media or taking pictures, grab your phone and/or camera and check outthis link for
places to take great photographs (tag me on your new pictures Instagram @splendorofamusement and @gigglesblog)… http://m.refinery29.com/nyc-instagram?
No matter what your hobby or location there is always something great to do, for free!
Need help? Email me at ElenasCardsDiscounts@gmail.com and I’ll reply as soon as possible. (Sorry for any delays). Enjoy your summer!
A message to R from SB email me please.
I love having conversations with intelligent people. Even better when they are smarter than me! I learn something new, and find a different way to see things or ideas. As an optimistic, being intimidated by them isn’t a problem because I see it as a learning experience not as a battle of wits. What annoys me is people who think they are smarter because they quote other people or speak in bumper sticker. Or are the “religious” smart ones, those are the people that think, if they mention God or Jesus in there sentence they are seen as a good person or they feel like they are better then everyone else. (No I don’t have any issues with religion or those who practice any form of religion), no, I mean the people who try to justify things they do by adding God or Jesus in their response… God would not approve.
Back to the intelligent people, I have had conversations with intelligent people recently that I feel are worth mentioning because they made me stop what I was doing or thinking to reflect on what they just said.
The wow moment!
When I was speaking to T.L. Brown about relationships she said, “it’s difficult to rebuild anything on a cracked foundation, you must literally start from the ground up,” about relationships and getting back together with someone where trust was a major problem.
And how C.O. Tiger expressed that, “it is not your responsibility to look like what people expect you to,” about new haircuts, wardrobe changes and new looks. And ” Everyone is intelligent. Perhaps we do not share the same field of intelligence. However, the idea is not to discuss common knowledge often, but to discuss things that expand our minds and take our thoughts on a journey they’ve never been on before,” about intelligence.
A.C. Vega stated, “I’m not a psychologist, but every human starts off with a basic operating system, and like all operating systems, you install programs to do different functions. Now, with the operating system itself, there’s updates. Learning archery is a program, learning how to handle stress is an update. I believe we designed computers subconsciously to resemble our own minds,” about maturity in men and women and how we are raised.
It doesn’t take quoting the bible, a book or something found online to sound intelligent. Genuine thoughts and feelings show intelligence and passion for a subject or topic shows maturity. We all must grow up sometime and a look in the mirror to realize when it’s time, can help. Making excuses to stay in our comfortable, and “zombie” like lives isn’t enough. Get out of the comfort zone, try something new, drop the excuses, after all, “the range of an excuse is.. ZERO!” (I.L. Iris aka Mom)
I asked several women I know the following questions:
What is the best and worst decision you’ve ever made? What Was your dream job as a kid and why? What do you think is the most significant barrier to female leadership? What woman inspires you and why? What will be the biggest challenge for the generation of women behind you? What are your future plans? What or who do you think helped you arrive to where you have in life? Any advice for future successful women?
Here I reveal the women I chose and their answers…
C.O. Tiger answers, “The best decision I ever made was to become a mother. The worst decision I ever made was getting into a serious relationship so young. My dream job was to be an egyptologist because I was in love with Egyptian history. The barrier would be fear of how others perceive you. Dr. Ruth inspires me because she has overcome so much and despite the lack of a good healthy childhood she has managed to become so productive and she has paved the way for someone like me to do what I love. The biggest challenge for women will be abstaining from feeling like they have to give in to men’s wants. These days men want sex almost immediately, they want to see you act as a wife before they even ask you to be exclusive. As women we have to stop being so submissive and giving so much of ourselves without seeing anything from them. And as the years pass by the more many men feel entitled. I miss dating when I was younger and there were less things being asked of me so soon. We have to put our foot down. Just because they may requests doesn’t mean they deserve to have them fulfilled. My future plans are becoming a sex therapist. My father helped me make it this far because he allowed me to find my own way in life and trusted me to do so with my head on straight. Sometimes that’s what means so much….someone’s trust in you, that you will do the right thing. Future successful women: assert yourself and your motives, define yourself don’t allow others to define you and allow that to be your perception of yourself, make a bucketlist (regardless of our quest for success theres more to life and we still need to have fun) and plan early in life (your 20s’) for retirement.”
F.M. Fatma says, “Worse decision—to be married young, Best decision—to go back in school, Dream job – to be a doctor and help people. Most significant barrier to female leadership—male dominance, What women inspired you—Hillary Clinton (personality, behavior, smart, good leader, example), Biggest challenges for generations of woman behind me—how to combine family and career. What or who help you—sometime we need help from other people, but you are the only one who can do that. Set up your goals and go for that—disregard distractions-it is only one life you live—take best of that. Any advice for future successful women: Finish school first, develop your career—last step is to have a family. One kid is enough, more than one will hold you back, unfortunately. Make connections in the business world, communicate often, hold your temper, behave, never jump in conclusion, use critical thinking and continuously learn—never stop.”
T.S. Tiff replied, ” The best decision I ever made was to go back to school. The worst decision I ever made was not to go to school right after high school. My dream job as a kid was becoming an accountant because I love numbers and I love money. Math was always my favorite subject. The most significant barrier to female leadership is getting the respect you deserved because of the position you’re in. My mother inspires me because she is very intelligent and plus she was an excellent mother. My mother was a single mother of six children and she did a great job raising her children. The biggest challenge for the generation of women behind me is knowing their worth. Young ladies today need to know they are worth more than their bodies. They should go to school and get an education and become great. My future plans are to get my masters degree and take the CPA test. GOD and my family helped me arrive to where I have in life. My advice for future successful women is stay focus, work hard and keep your eyes on the prize.”
T.L.B Tina answered, ” Best decision I ever made was to marry the man I’m married to now. In spite of reservations and hesitation, I went with what my heart told me instead of constantly relying on logic based on past experiences with OTHER men. And I’m happier now than I’ve ever been except for when my daughters were born. One bad decision I made was marrying the first husband; I knew it was a mistake even before I did it, yet I did it anyway and I lived to regret it for the 3 years I stayed married to him. My dream job as a child was to be a police officer like my father. I wanted to be a detective and carry a gold shield (badge) like he had. The most significant barrier to female leadership in the past, today and most likely in the future is our own self-doubt. As females, we inevitably second-guess ourselves and doubt our ability because we’re conditioned from very young girls to do exactly that. We’re taught to identify more closely with our “stronger” husband, although MOST of us are stronger than any man could ever dream of being. Dr. Maya Angelou, R.I.P. to her soul, was and will always be one of my greatest inspirations but more inspirational than her is my own mother. Dr. Angelou overcame all kinds of racial and gender-based barriers to become one of the most famous women of our generation; poet, scholar, philanthropist and role model for females of all races, cultures and backgrounds. My mom on the other hand wasn’t/isn’t famous but she worked two jobs, raised a houseful of children in the absence of my dad who was always away at school, training, etc. and still she managed to ALWAYS have words of encouragement and love for us, no matter how exhausted she was every day. Biggest challenge for women behind me is the same challenge as always, ourselves. Future plans are buying a home, settling down and building a better future with my husband and paving a positive road for my daughters and grandchildren. I credit my dad, my mom and really good friends who remained positive in spite of all the obstacles in front of them have helped me get where I am now. My advice for future successful women is to keep your head up, stay positive and NEVER ever allow anyone to make you second guess yourself, doubt your own worth or your ability to get ANYTHING done.”
“Hate me today, hate me tomorrow, hate me for all the things I didn’t do for you.” (Blue October)
There are words out there that touches us in some way. There are songs that when we hear them they make us rock out, or become sad.
Michael Jackson’s new song, Slave to the Rhythm, has a jam out beat to it but if we listen carefully to the words…
“She dances at the crack of dawn, And quickly cooks his food, She can’t be late, can’t take too long, The kids must get to school, She’s a slave to the rhythm, A slave to the rhythm of, The rhythm of love, the rhythm of love, She dances for the man at work, Who works her overtime, She dances to the kitchen stove, Dinner is served by nine, He says his food’s an hour late, She must be outta her mind, She works so hard, just to make her way, For a man who just don’t appreciate, And though he takes her love in vain, Still she could not stop, couldn’t break his chains, She danced the night that they fell out, She swore she’d dance no more, But then she did, he did not quit as she ran out the door, She danced through the night in fear of her life, She danced to a beat of her own, She let out a cry and swallowed her pride, She knew she was needed back home.”
Who doesn’t feel like a slave in their everyday lives. Sometimes that trap can become overwhelming, it can consume us and when something new comes along to change that or make it different it’s like a shiny new car or brand new phone. We want to test it out, play with it and spend all our time with/on it. Then we realize that, that new thing isn’t actually something we needed or wanted. It was a distraction to keep us occupied while we fix what was making us unhappy in the first place. Once that discovery is made that new thing goes in the old, adjusted and part of life pile.
Mistakes can be made, moments of weakness can happen and guilty pleasures can consume someone who is not careful.
However; once we are back into our routine and the fun has ended, we realize the grass was just as green on the original side and only appeared greener on the other side because it was grown with fertilizer.
Why is it that people who meet someone new, that has impacted their life with such positive and great ways create chaos in that person’s life that they cannot help fix later on. They run away from it and make the person who impacted them positively, suffer. They person who was impacted positively and was given such selfless gifts became selfish.
It was like, “Cause you make me feel like, I’ve been locked out of heaven for to long,” (Locked Out of Heaven, Bruno Mars) to “Just gonna stand there and watch me burn? / That’s alright because I like the way it hurts / Just gonna stand there and hear me cry? That’s alright because I love the way you lie.” (Love the way you lie, Rhianna and Eminem) or “Once upon a time I was falling in love. / Now I’m only falling apart. / There’s nothing I can do / total eclipse of the heart.” (Total Eclipse of the Heart, Bonnie Tyler). But it’s OK because those things that are preached tend to reflect in the mirror in the most un-delightful way.
Life goes on, and so does a beating heart…
This year, in September, is my College Graduation!
One of my final projects is to write an autobiography of my life.
Then after writing it I have to publish it, in some form, and share it with others.
I guess it’s a way to get us to see where we were before and where we are going.
Let’s start from the beginning…
I was born in New Jersey, raised in NJ and RI by my mother and grandmother. Two very strong women and
amazing role models! My mother was military and an Officer since I was 2 years old.
I am Puerto Rican and now 28 years old.
Before passing away my aunt came up with my first name, which means Orchid in Spanish but she always
called me Flor.
I was raised around a very large family. I apologize to anyone who feels left out, I still love and appreciate you.
My family members remind me of things we used to do when we were younger. Playing, fighting and just hanging out. They told me, when I was a baby my grandpa would lay me on his belly facing the TV and we would watch wrestling together. I was one of the youngest ones in our group. Spoiled by grandma because I was her favorite.
Then my mother met someone who was really cool. An Italian fellow from work who I remembered bringing us shark shaped fruit snacks as an ice breaker. A couple years later they got married and he became my Dad. My biological father only contacted us because he was forced to pay child support, but once that was over (when I turned 18) he contacted me maybe once or twice a year. I’m his youngest child. So my step father became my Dad. Dad taught me everything proper. I always wondered why he was always “busting my chops” but now I realized it was all for a good reason… my future.
My younger brother came along and I was overjoyed! A little brother, and he was the family miracle baby. So premature, we could hold him with one hand, but still super adorable. He was so small they had to stuff his Halloween costume (newborn size) just so it could fit. Two years later my younger sister came along and that was also exciting news because now I was the big sister to the little sister. I remember being excited and overwhelmed about being a big sister but unfortunately I don’t remember much of my youth. The reason why will come later.
Now for the parts I do remember clearly
I remember starting to face paint at 11 years old at a carnival at the church we attended, as a last minute volunteer. I remember going to Barbizon School for Models when I was 14 years old, for a year.
I remember being a camper for three years, a Jr. helper for three years, a Jr. counselor for three years and a Sr. counselor for three years at a camp in NJ that I am honored to volunteer at.
In 2001 I won Ms. Congeniality for Ms. Teen Rhode Island in Providence, RI and was given the opportunity to advance to Mrs. Teen America but never went.
I attended to two High Schools and that was rough. Freshman year I went to school in New Jersey with my older sister who was a senior. Then Sophomore and Junior years I went to a high school in Rhode Island. I made a decision my Junior year that I wanted to graduate where my older sister did. I finished my Junior year and moved back for my senior year. Unfortunately I was exhausted most of my senior year because my transcripts were screwed up from Rhode Island causing me to have to take a full load of classes at the High School and go to night school in order to graduate that year with my classmates. During the day I took classes and at night I took Anatomy and Trigonometry. Plus the sports I played and clubs I was in.
This wasn’t the first time my transcripts were screwed up from Rhode Island. In third grade there was a mix up and I had to repeat the grade the following year.
So there I was, 18, just graduated High School and ready to take on the new challenges of the world. I joined the Air Force January 2004 but ended up switching branches and joining the Marine Corps. In between waiting on the Air Force and switching to the Marine Corps I worked as a sales associate for Mandee, clothing store in New Jersey.
December 2004, before Christmas I was sitting at MEPS waiting for my ride to the airport, where the first plane ride ever in my life took me to South Carolina, then the bus got me to Parris Island, for my Marine Corps Boot Camp Training.
I had cut all my hair off and donated it but also because it’s easier to go through boot camp with shorter hair.
The Marine Corps taught me so much more than being a Marine. We were taught discipline, respect, honor, courage, commitment, Semper Fidelis (always faithful), marching, physical training, knowledge (USMC history), proper eating techniques, proper diet (food intake), swimming, shooting weapons, living in the field, surviving, maturity, first aid, and so much more.
I went to Boot Camp in Parris Island, South Carolina, then Marine Combat Training in Camp Geiger, North Carolina, Military Occupational Specialty School in Camp Johnson, North Carolina then my first duty station. Quantico, Virginia was my first duty station. Initially I was sent to work for the Promotions Branch but that turned out to be a clerical error, I was supposed to be at Marine Security Guard Battalion (name has changed) and was sent there a month later. I started in the mailing room and then someone saw my motivation and took me over to schools side where I became instructor staff and helped teach Marines to become Embassy Guards. Then in the middle of 2006 I moved to my next duty station in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. Where I worked in four different types of administration jobs and offices and finished my four year contract. During my time as an instructor there was an accident during training that left me with a bad shoulder and other issues.
In 2005 I was engaged, we got married and I was pregnant by 2006. Lisa was born and I became very sick. The doctors couldn’t figure out what it was and it ruined my marriage. By 2008 I was divorced and finally diagnosed with Hypothyroidism and Sjogren’s Syndrome. By that time I was working in the “civilian world” for two years and started school at the end of 2008. I worked as a Face Painter at the Farmers Market for four years, a Professional Clown for two years, Marketing Manager for one year, President of the Farmers Market Association for one year, Secretary and Treasurer of the Clown Alley for one year, Public Relations Official at the College I attended for two years with advertising responsibilities, Fry Cook for one year, and Cook and Chef for two years.
By 2010 my ex-husband and I had joint custody and my daughter is going to a great school. She is very tall for her age and smart too. Lisa is my life and strength.
In September of 2011 I started dating Luis, we got married and we moved to New York by January 2012. I started my Bachelor degree at University of Phoenix, on campus and graduate in September. In July 2013 Luis asked me for a divorce, wasn’t ready for a life time commitment. August 2013 I applied for work as a security guard and worked in three different locations throughout the year, not counting the over time locations. Now I am constantly thinking of fun, artsy, and smart ways to fill my time besides work and homework.
More to come…
Kissing… that first touch, lips reaching another person. Their cheek, their neck, their lips…
It’s an expression of ourselves.
“Kiss me and you will see how important I am,” Sylvia Plath
Feelings of excitement, suspense, relief, and overwhelming emotions take over the brain while your hearts skips a beat or two. Then the feeling of lust and want flood the body. As one person slides their tongue gently meeting the other persons they produce the hormone oxytocin (neurotransmitter in the brain). The hormone plays a huge role in pair bonding. This hormone is greatly stimulated during sex and many other ways.
When two people meet, even if it starts as a friendship, or it’s a first date, emotions are involved. One person has become a part of someone’s life. Then we look for ourselves in that new person, or a familiarity inside of them, that is also in us and trying to inspire a positive change or effect in that person’s life. Then the friendship builds and no matter the personal “preference” love happens. So as they build on their friendship, they build the amount of care they have for each other.
The first kiss can be an awkward moment for both the giver and receiver. The emotions are overflowing and overwhelming. Not all first kisses are perfect but those that are, it’s magical. It’s a sign that, this was the right move at the right time, perfect.
However if that first kiss is not “perfect” or it was not as “planned” then the second one can be just as great and magical. The subtle lean in, caressing of the face, the wonderful aroma of pheromone and the surrounding environment enters their noses, and that release of a build up from months of becoming closer and bonded by passion and love.
Kissing opens the door to many other forms of expressing love. Hugs, holding hands, holding each other, laying in each others’ arms and making love.
When someone describes love making, they jump to the conclusion of sexual intercourse. Love making is the act of expressing love towards another person in a very intimate and passionate environment.
I am a hopeless romantic and making love doesn’t involve just one thing, one action and one outcome. Kissing, caressing, whispering, holding, and touching is involved that can lead to intercourse.
“One hypothesis is that the kiss has evolved as a mechanism for gathering information about potential sexual partners. A kiss brings us into close physical proximity with the other, close enough to smell and taste them. The face area is rich with glands secreting chemicals that carry genetic and immunological information. Our saliva carries hormonal messages. A person’s breath, as well as the taste of their lips and the feel of their teeth, signals things about their health and hygiene, and thus their procreative suitability. Another hypothesis claims that the kiss functions primarily on the level of psychology, as a way to express and reinforce feelings of trust, closeness, and intimacy with another. A kiss is therefore an implicit expression of openness and trust. A kiss also shows that you do not recoil from the other’s bodily fluids. Recent research has suggested that sexual arousal, especially among women, functions to suppress feelings of disgust. Despite the differences in attitudes towards it, kissing, it seems, benefits both genders. Generally, couples that kiss more frequently report improved and more satisfying relationships. “Kisses are a better fate than wisdom,” wrote the poet e. e. Cummings.
So perhaps you’d be wise to turn off your computer right about now and go find someone to kiss…”