Saturday, October 27, 2012


'Tis the season for the ghouls and goblins to come knocking at your door for a trick or a treat... 

I am from the Dominican Republic so this is not a traditional holiday for us, however, growing up in Jersey, I did take part in some dressing up.  One of my favorite costumes was when I dressed as a Gypsy girl with a kerchief on my head, a white fluffy shirt, colorful long skirt and lots of bangles on my wrists.  My cousin and I would just dig through her stuff and mine and somehow put my costume together. That was probably more fun than anything else we did that night.

My kids have always enjoyed this time of year, not just because of the candy but because of the creative ways they get to dress up and the pumpkin decorating/carving/painting in which we traditionally take part. 

Ms. N wasn't sure what she would be this year, but she did know she wanted to be scary.  We found this hooded skull robe in the Halloween box, sprayed her hair free and as you can see threw in some face paint not meant to depict anything in wasn't until someone at school said "wow she makes a great Zombie" that she turned to me and said "Mom I'm a zombie!" OK we've settled that.

Of course, her pumpkin also had to be scary. She did a great job all on her own. No prize for this scary lady but everyone really liked it and that was enough for her.

Mr. J seen here as Captain America. He really wanted to be a super hero and thank goodness I found this little costume for 1/2 price at a local Rite-Aid Pharmacy.  I made the shield out of a Chinet paper plate, paint, and a little white glue glitter for the star.  He loved it!!

Mr. J is the happiest boy ever.  He did not want a scary pumpkin because he believes everyone should be happy, so here it is... big smile, wide eyes,  and simple.  Nice Job!!

Just in case Hurricane Sandy comes through on Halloween, at least we know the kids got to wear their costumes.  But they are looking forward to parading with their friends through our neighborhood. Should be fun, as always!

Be Safe and Have Fun!


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Still unpacking and organizing---help!

We moved from GTMO Cuba, took three months to get a home and finally received our household goods. That alone was enough to cause me some serious stress. We have been moving for the last 22 years, yes military moves us, but military doesn't unpack us, organize us, paint for us, etc... not that I expect that to be the case.  My point is, there's a lot to do once the "stuff arrives" and that's where I am now.

We went from a military home, all white paint and not much we can do about what we were given except get comfortable with our furniture and goods in the space we were given. That's probably the best part of living on base. You know what you're going to get and you learn to live with it.

This time around we did not have the option of military housing so we decided to buy a house.  Good thing is this are has a high rate of transition and renting or reselling if needed wont be an issue but I'm not focusing on that now since I just moved in.  OK so now we're in a house we can do whatever we want...paint, curtains, carpeting, etc... That's the fun part.  But sometimes it feels like there's so much to do that I truly feel like I'll never get done.  I feel I need to start hiding boxes in storage just so I don't feel overwhelmed.

We are all moved in and life goes on as usual for everyone. For me life goes on as usual plus I continue to attempt to get organized and figure out what I want where and how to set up rooms so they are livable and kid-friendly.

Meanwhile, the kids get comfortable in what used to be a "formal dining room" and is now the "Play Room" or better yet "the Fun Zone." I believe children need to have a special place in their home where they can go play and just have fun, a place not their bedroom which I like to reserve to sleep and read before bed.  This room is a bonus and the kids love it.  Check out the box tunnel they made with some of our moving boxes.

OK so I'm letting myself get overwhelmed. I know, I just need to take breaks long enough to regroup.  I still hiding some of the boxes until I'm ready for them is a good idea ;-)

So back to the play room.  Think of a very square room, windows only on one wall, well lit area, wood floor with a kid-friendly area rug. Piano on one wall.  I have a changing table in there thinking about using it to organize baskets with toys, at least until I find a place for it... any idea about the changing table? I've seen people convert them to liquor bars or to display nice pottery or dishes in the dining room.  The idea in the play room right now is to get a few long but not tall book shelves or shelve units and clear plastic bins so they can see the toys in the bins. I'm having trouble figuring out the best tools to use in there and the most cost effective. I'm not trying to spend a lot but need to have some organization system that works.

Share your ideas to help me get organized.  I'll post pictures of the rooms. I welcome all ideas!!

Thank You!