Bravery: From Miedosa to Chingona



Ever since I made the momentous decision to make business cards, I’ve been a bundle of nerves. Business cards mean that there’s no turning back for now, it’s putting yourself out there.  Checking the mail every day and asking ‘Are they here yet?’ Then I sat down and thought, ‘what business do I have tryna start a business? especially when I am not together?’ I am completely out of my comfort zone, gone are the ‘comfortable’ things that I always had and took for granted: salary,, benefits, resources, safety net.

I’ve always said that my life is not for everyone, But some days,, I have had to push on, even when I do not feel like handling the business that is my life. The biggest challenge for me has been that, when I see that the four walls are closing in fast, instead of empowering myself, I find that my mind is on overdrive with crazyass thoughts and all of my fears are being brought up to the surface.  If I am going to make it in business, and in life, then I must find a way to survive and thrive within in a new comfort zone.

How do I make my new comfort zone?  I cannot be the only one who is trying to make positive change in life so I started looking for information to ease my mind, my fears, and to learn how to channel this energy so that I can work it and make it happen.


First thing I did was turn to my network of familia and friends;  I sent out a text a few minutes ago and asked some of you to tell me in 10 words or less what bravery meant to you:

“Having fear yet surging forward to a triumphant successful outcome”
“Finding your ‘ovarios‘ and proudly showing them off”
“Getting things done even when you’re terrified por no quedarte con el “what if”
“Being able to stand up for what is important to you even when you’re scared”
“Acknowledging your fears and doing what you KNOW needs doing”
“Bravery means wiping your tears and picking yourself up to handle the next round of BS”

Love the responses!  These powerful statements allowed me to see that all of us struggle with some type of fear that we all throw to the side when we need to make changes in our lives, no matter how small. I didn’t need to know exactly WHAT scares you or what motivates you to move forward, although I could definitely sense the intensity in all of these statements, and I found that acts of bravery can be large or small, and can occur many times in our lives.



My question is how do we know what to do when life pushes us forward to do something new? How do we channel our fears and motivate ourselves to ‘handle it’? Have any of you ever told yourself any of the following statements?

  1. “I can’t make time for this. My family needs all my attention.”
  2. “I don’t really have the money to invest in myself right now.”
  3. “People will think I’m crazy for doing this.”
  4. “I’ll feel guilty honoring my own dreams and doing something for myself.”
  5. “I’m not sure this will do anything for me.
    –Kathy Caprino

I’ll put myself out there and briefly answer these questions:

1. I have no children or husband, I love my family but they are all grown folks, so, no excuses, I must make time for this.
2. True, I have no money to invest in myself right now so I must find other ways to invest: free training, find a mentor, an investor, review my talents and find new income in the meantime.
3. True. What else is new? LOL.
4. This is probably the hardest of the five questions to read and fulfill: my struggle has been honoring my dreams, taking care of myself, and more important, TRUSTING myself to make good and positive decisions. It’s been Dad, Familia and trying to stay out of the line of fire in my personal life. Not easy but it soon will be!  Once I get over this hurdle and let go of negativity is when I will truly celebrate!
5. When I feel all of the fears of living life without a net is when I’m all ‘freakiada’ and I wonder if I made the right decision.  What I must do is embrace the fear so that I am able to see how much being brave really does it for me.

omg! love this great attitude adjustment! Bottom line, I do want something different in my life and I know that I do not want to handle this new phase of my life alone, that deep down, I do need help and support (so hard to admit LOL) and love it when y’all respond to my SOS text messages! Thanks.

I guess that there never is a good time to start something new than NOW, is there?  Time to work it and have fun!


When I saw this quote below, I felt as if I had to share it right away!  But more important, this quote took me out of my ‘four walls closing in miedosa filled with fear’ attitude today, it got my butt out of the house and out into the world so that ‘La Miedosa’ could pay a visit to ‘La Chingona’ along with the merry band of chingonas who sent me the text messsages LOL.  So as I end this week, I leave you with this quote…

“Bravery is the ability to move forward to a goal, to take action that is in your highest interest and in the interest of all mankind, even in the face of all your fears, anxieties and insecurities, and in the face of your core belief that you’re not good enough or strong enough. Bravery is the very thing that makes us bigger than ourselves, and changes the world for good.” -Kathy Caprino

…and I’ll also leave part of my business card! which I’ll gladly give out ONCE I get them in the mail!  LOL


Juan Gabriel 1950-2016


My godson MT3 calls me this afternoon with this news: “Nina, Juan Gabriel died. Just wanted you to know.” WWWOOOWWW.

One of the giants of Mexican and Latin music, gone.  He was at one of his homes in Santa Monica, CA and had a heart attack today 8/28/2016.  Juan Gabriel was currently on tour and had done his final concert at The Forum in Los Angeles, CA on Friday night.

Once I got home, I went straight to the TV hoping that I had not missed news coverage on the passing of this icon.  Fast forward, four hours later, and there is still coverage on Spanish TV about Juan Gabriel’s death.  What struck me was the astounding amount of songs that this man composed in his lifetime.  Every story would have Juanga’s music playing, “Amor Eterno”, “Yo No Naci Para Amar” “Abrazame Muy Fuerte” “No Tengo Dinero” “Querida” “Noa Noa” “No Me Vuelvo A Enamorar” “Hasta Que Te Conoci” and the list goes on and on and on.   My social media has blown up with every other post on Juanga’s passing.  So much of my radio and event fam has a story to tell about him.

Throughout my entire career in radio, I have been surrounded by Juan Gabriel music, all of his MANY hits I have played on the radio, to so many of his concerts, I have taken winners in to “Meet & Greets”, given out concert tickets, and I remember one time that we were taking winners to take pictures with Juan Gabriel, who, at the time, was not crazy about taking pictures.  So there I go making sure that my winners get their photo, and my crew and I each take a picture with him.  When we got the pictures back, we were told that they had been “damaged” during the processing and everyone’s pictures with Juanga came out fuzzy, grainy, and dark.   Sera cierto?  My picture is somewhere in my storage unit, so I have not included it in this entry.

Another time, I took winners to LA to see a concert at Universal Studios, it wasn’t Juan Gabriel🙂.  My BFF Maria GarciaRIP and her friend went with us.  As I was flying to SFO with winners and Maria was flying to Sac Airport, my flight left first.  Later that evening, I get a call from Maria saying that her flight had been delayed.  While they were waiting for their flight, they decided to go to one of the airport restaurants.  Once seated, to their absolute shock, guess who was at the next table?  None other than Juan Gabriel!  You better know Maria checked it all out and proceeds to tell me that Juanga had iced tea and a salad with Thousand Island dressing, and that he kept asking for more dressing LOL


Juan Gabriel was one of Mama’s favorite artists EVER.  One of the joys of my life was to have been able to take her to see him in concert, she loved it.   I was very excited when Rocio Durcal (Mama’s #1 artist) and Juan Gabriel were on tour TOGETHER.   When they sang together, it was pure magic.  And, as Rocio became an international star by singing songs written by Juan Gabriel, including my mother’s favorite song, “Amor Eterno”, everytime I hear either of these two legends, my thoughts go first to Mama and how much she enjoyed their music.  Here they are “a duo” singing “Fue Un Placer Conocerte”, straight-up perfection.

Out of all of the many, many, many songs of Juan Gabriel, I have always been a fan of his straight-up, in your face, tomacabron songs OF COURSE accompanied by mariachi.  His phrasing, his fast-paced style of fitting so many words in one line so they sound like one lyric is second to none, I would sit in amazement wondering when this man took a breath.   Juanga felt every word and every note of the song, his interpretation was, many times, more than a performance, it was a tour de force.  Juan Gabriel was fun, flashy, emotional, divo, authentic, original, gifted, prolific, and would leave it all on the stage, every time.   Check out the video below and see for yourself!

My all-time favorite Juan Gabriel songs are “Se Me Olvido Otra Vez”, “Insensible”, “Te Voy A Olvidar” and “La Diferencia”… here is Rocio Durcal in what is my very favorite version of “La Diferencia”

I could go on and on and on.  Juan Gabriel was already beloved in life for the music that was the soundtrack to people’s lives.  His influence on future composers and musicians will be felt for many years to come.  No habra otro igual.  Que En Paz Descanse Juan Gabriel.


The Power of ‘NO’


I’ve written on this subject before so that means that I still needed some work on the word ‘no’.  So many times, when I have said ‘no’, I was afraid. Afraid of the power of the word, afraid that people wouldn’t like me, afraid that I would mess up the status quo, afraid that someone would get mad, afraid to use my God-given mind, afraid of the sound of my voice.  Hoping that my voice wouldn’t betray me by shaking, afraid that my tears would fall out of my eyes and that I would appear weak.

Then, last week happened. Suffice it to say that all hell broke loose, every fear came at me face-first, humiliation, defeat, death, weakness, sadness.   Everything manifested itself physically with me violently ill vomiting all over the car while driving on the freeway.   As I sat at my friend’s house, cooled off, and calmed myself, I had just enough energy to get in my car and drive home slowly.   Nothing really hit me until the next day…here I was physically sick and still trying to control every part of my world, trying to keep that lid on tight.  Well, of course, that didn’t end well.  I was still throwing up and still trying to do it all myself, trying to control the rage and action of others.  Then it hit me, by letting go and by saying ‘no’ and meaning it, I could get myself back in gear.

I had an assignment in a support group I belonged to a couple of years ago:  our assignment was to say ‘no’ and mean it, with no apologies, no ‘I’m sorry’ after that ‘no’.   I was all big and bad in my group and then promptly went outside to get gasoline, when someone came up and asked me for money.  First thing out of my mouth:  “I’m sorry but no…” Fail. LOL.

Fast forward 3 or 4 days, I’m still a little shaken up but my resolve is stronger than ever.  For me and for others, for the good of all concerned, it is time to say “no” and mean it, no apologies, no excuses, no rage, no anger, and most important, no fear.   I am sifting through all of the crazyass madness that took place in the past week, I am sorting out the good and bad, the things I must say no to, for my own good.  It will not be easy.  It will not be pretty,  It is necessary,  It is time to say no to drama, to anger, to rage, to control, to keeping things in, to keeping quiet, to letting myself down time and time again.   Saying ‘no’ will allow me to heal, to stop living in fear of what others want, think and/or do.   I can now see that I have been through worse and, at the end of the day, when I thought about it, it was when I said “No” that things truly changed for the better, it’s all in how you look at things.

I have lost so much in the past few days, but I have gained something too:  thanks to the grace of God, I’ve been able to gain perspective, which I really needed, I was able to see that, things happen, no one is perfect, and that no one should live life with a pit of negativity in their stomach.  NO is a complete sentence and respecting my boundaries will never lead me wrong, no matter what happens.

Maria Antonieta Garcia: BFFSisterFamFriend! I Will Miss You.


Said my final goodbyes to my friend Maria during these past couple of days.   It has been a sad time for me.   I have been blessed to have friendships that have lasted years and years.  Maria is the first of my group of BFFFamiliaByChoice friends to leave and, as I drove thru her town today, all I could do was cry for my friend.  The one thing that she had asked was that we remember her with a smile, but for that minute, I could not.

When I got to her reception, I was able to see so many friends that we had in common, so many people that I have met thru Maria, so there was so much to talk about as we remembered our friend and so many ways that we honored her:  one friend catered with Maria’s favorite foods, one friend described that everything she wore that day had been gifts to her from Maria – from her jewelry to her clothing;  sooo many teachers were present (as Maria was a teacher) and it was very cool to see/hear the impact she had on their lives.

I sat with friends who had me laughing (and crying) as we talked about adventure after adventure like:

  1.  When we used to go out to the clubs, guys used to come up and ask our guy friend’s permission to dance with us LOL and el muy cínico used to answer “dos dolares por favor” LOL
  2. How I publicly thanked Georgia, Maria’s friend, who used to let us ALL stay over at her house in SF after we’d close down the clubs.  I didn’t remember that it was a studio apartment until today.
  3.  The time my creative friend dressed up as “Miss Zanahoria/Miss Carrot” for a Halloween party and she made her kickass bouquet of carrots and made a CROWN out of baby carrots — sooo awesome and I remember telling her, “WHO could top that?”
  4. The many times we got kicked out of the Student Union and various other places on campus por desmadrozos.
  5. The time Carlos had the nerve to ask Maria why women got so irritable during that time of the month LOL  Girl broke it down for him about half of our insides coming out of this little hole, etc. in such graphic detail that I still laugh about it and get serious asco too.
  6. Then there was the  time that there was an enano/midget who was dancing right near Maria’s chest — Hilarious and we never let her live this down!
  7. The time we all went to the Mariner’s /A’s baseball game with Maria, and we sat on the Mariner’s side and kept cheering for the A’s and checking out the fine ball players.  Girl was a serious game-watcher and we really tried her patience that night LOL.

There are soooo many more that I will save for when I meet up with all of my friends when we hang out together in Maria’s honor.  In fact, we’ve already started planning our next get-together.  You know there be great food, algo para tomar, chisme, chisme, chisme, music, tears, and, of course, laughter.

One of Maria’s aunts saw me sitting there, laughing and crying, and she told me to keep doing that, to keep honoring her niece forever.  It will not be hard, Maria was one of my greatest friends.  Below please find my thoughts the actual day that my friend left us … Saturday, July 23rd at 1:30pm:


My BFF Maria Garcia left this world earlier this afternoon. I’m very sad that Maria has left us so soon, I’m very proud that my friend fought until the very end, I’m so grateful that she wanted to be my friend for all of these years, I’m blessed to have had Maria as a member of my BFFs, a sister that I chose for myself and my familia, and I’m very hopeful that Maria will be reunited with her beloved Mama and maybe she’ll see my Mama as well in her eternal home. Thank you Jesus Lord Virgen of G for allowing me to have such an awesome group of BFFs, we are missing one now but we will be able to remember and honor Maria always: fun-loving, hilarious-funny, could talk to anyone anywhere anytime, major baseball and sports fan, great dancer, loved fine dining, always had her makeup and nails on point, love it that we could share makeup always being the same color LOL, creative, great teacher, kind-hearted, giving, patient with me:  her non-sports loving, non-animal loving, non-adventureous foodie who always wanted tacos or papas instead of trying out new foods. I will miss you sooooo very much, I was always happy to be your friend, and will never forget you Maria Antonieta Garcia, love you sister.


Tortillas & Your Inner Chingona


If you make tortillas or, at least, warm tortillas on the comal, the best tasting ones are usually the ones that puff up, light, hot, so good you can eat them plain without butter, salt or anything, right off of the griddle, fresh.  Tortilla perfection before you rip it in half to use as utensils as you eat, before the tortilla is filled with food to make a taco; or topped with anything tostada-style, or cut and deep-fried as chips.    Living at the Ranch has me warming tortillas constantly but I never saw the analogy, the power of la tortilla until I saw this photo.

So maybe we’ve got to be the ones that puff up, proud to be who we are, light:  meaning our baggage is not weighing us down thus allowing us to be light-hearted, sangre-liviana, effective, efficient;  hot:  we are confident, powerful, not afraid to be who we are and yes, for some, that’s hot.  So good that we don’t need any frills to get what we want,  to be as authentic as possible, to work it anytime, anywhere and in front of anyone.

Let’s try to remember that puffed-up sensation when someone wants to fill us with information or judgements that make us feel heavy, not satisfied but brought down by drama, stress, or life.  Let’s work at not letting ourselves be topped with someone else’s issues so that we are not covered in their mess.  Avoid situations where we may be cut-up and deep-fried:  and  become burned-out, spiritually and physically.

Tortillas are the ultimate comfort food and the ultimate journey of loving ourselves starts by taking care of ourselves.   Sometimes taking care of ourselves feels like we are on top of that comal – especially when we struggle with seeing ourselves through another’s eyes and we forget how great and capable we are.  Let’s not forget to puff up ESPECIALLY when the heat is on.   Be light, be hot, be great.


The Perfect Day For A Perfect Day



A perfect day for me is one that I haven’t had in a long while.

To sleep until I wake up.  To stay in my pj’s all day.  To speak to no one. To completely turn off the phone and social media.  To not drive anywhere UNLESS I want something for myself.  To lay around.  To cook one pan of something and eat breakfast, lunch and dinner from whatever I create. To sleep.  To watch the way the light looks in my house in the early morning and to watch that light change throughout the day until night.

For many years, when I would have days like this, I would feel guilty for them, like as if I were doing something wrong or something that I wasn’t supposed to do.  Taking care of myself was never a priority UNTIL I made it a priority.

Once I made myself a priority, even for that one day, I found that I was able to think much more clearly, I was able to recharge and have more energy to fulfill my obligations and work on my list of goals.  It felt as if my mind would open up and I would be able to THINK. In short, my Inner Chingona was standing at attention, waiting for me to take advantage of the power that always resides inside of me and that the world can dull at times.

In this atmosphere of ‘standing in one’s truth’, this is where I find the power that I need to move myself and my goals forward.   Today is a perfect day for a perfect day.  It is the perfect gift for me to give to myself, and more important, to those around me like my family🙂.  By taking care of myself today, I will be much more approachable and open with my family, who sadly, gets the ‘lumbre’ that I breathe and let out when I’m in my stressed anxious impatient irritable state.   This is also a time for me to check myself on professional matters — am I happy?  am I doing my best work for the client? how can I be more productive? how can I work smarter, not harder?

Not all questions are answered in one day.  Not all issues are resolved in one day.  However, I am able to tackle these things a little at a time which allows me to keep on keeping on, to move myself forward, to learn how to smile, laugh, and live happier.  I also find that perfect days are great for inspiration for my writing, which I need and love.

So today, as I celebrate another year of life, sitting here in my pj’s, I will give myself the perfect day, it’s been time for a long time.

Do not be afraid of perfect days, embrace them, empower yourselves.


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Happy Birthday Carmen!  My very first birthday when all I needed was to be held, loved, and fed – perfect days, right?




Unleashing My Inner Chingona



Changing the look of my blog.   Let me know what you think of it, it’s a work in progress.

I’ve been blogging for a few years now and, like a lot of writers, got stuck, got uninspired, lived life instead of writing about it.  When I looked back and realized that I hadn’t written in THREE months, that was a wake-up call for me.  Part of finding my Inner Chingona is in the writing, in finding the time to take care of myself, to love myself, to make time for events, to make time away from events, to make time to meet my many life goals, to stop listening to voices and opinions around me 24/7, and to find the huevos to listen to my inner chingona, myself, my gut.

So what gets me to that place?  That place that allows me to take care of myself without feeling guilty, without feeling like I owe my time, my nervous system, by body, my soul to anything or anyone?   I find that, more and more, these days, it’s the one place in this picture.  I do my best thinking in the car, the most creative ideas jump out at me when I’m watching the sunrise or the sunset, and I’ve been blessed to see soooo many at the wheel of my vehicle.

I practice presentations in my Jeep, I practice difficult conversations in my Jeep, I cry my eyes out in my Jeep, I make the majority of my phone calls in my Jeep, I pray the Rosary in my Jeep, I sing at the top of my lungs in my Jeep, I find my power in my Jeep, I find that I can actually hear my Inner Chingona in my Jeep.

This picture was taken at the end of a very successful event where I was hot, tired, covered with dust and dirt, happy happy happy that the event had gone well, proud that I had done a great job, and, as I watched the sun go down that day, I could feel my power slowing creeping back into my body and I was energize and ready for the next event.  I was again invincible.  This is my definition of a perfect end to a perfect day.

All pencils are sharpened, a journal is now with me 24/7 again so that I can get back into my 2 favorite things in life:  writing and unleashing for my Inner Chingona!

Prince: Part of the Soundtrack of My Life



As I heard the news of Prince Rogers Nelson’s death on 4/21/2016, I didn’t realize how much his music was a part of my life…

When I first heard “When Doves Cry”, it stopped me in my tracks. So different, so original, so creative. All of the songs on that album were really different, cool, authentic. It hit all of my roommates and I as well.

Nisie was always a huge Rick James fan, and, once she heard Prince, it was over LOL I always remember Nis saying “Priiiiince!” every time she heard a Prince song on the radio, no matter where we were, or every time she played his music at our place, which was often. That’s how I learned every word to the almost every song, the ‘Purple Rain’ album was played that much.

“Purple Rain” is a song that is almost trance-like and like an anthem. I remember my Comadre and I were sitting at our place, as one of our parties was ending and most of the people had gone, it was madrugada like 4 or 5 in the morning, and as I was coming back into the house after saying goodbye to folks, “Purple Rain” is being played over and over and I find my Comadre sitting on one of the inside steps and she’s crying. As we sat there talking it out, I remember “Purple Rain” still being played over and over for what was probably hours or so.

“My Name Is Prince” and “Diamonds and Pearls” take me to my first years in radio. I’ve always had the luck to work in stations that have so many different type of music formats in the same place so it’s like your mind is blown because you hear so much more different music in one day than the average person. I’d go from one side of the building hearing Spanish blasting on one side and end up at the other hearing “Ma name is Prince …” Loved it.

Like many of my radio fam, we have the luck of going to many many concerts. And many of us remember many a day when you’d get an email or hear an announcement that there are extra tickets ‘up front’ — this usually meant that winners did not pick up their tickets and, so that they wouldn’t go to waste, the “first come, first served” announcement would come. Sometimes I’d make it, sometimes not. I was in Denver at the time, and the announcement came, this time for Prince tickets and this time I made it. Add to this, our station was a few blocks away from Fiddler’s Green, the venue I used to refer to as Denver’s version of the Bay’s Shoreline Amphitheater.

Colorado BFF Sandra and I walked to Fiddler’s and were pleasantly surprised to walk in to see/hear his opening act: Chaka Khan, yay! And then to watch this man in concert, I watched him play every instrument on stage, take no breaks, and was completely blown away by his talent, his originality, and inventive arrangements of so many songs, new and old. I have never seen anyone else work a show like Prince, ever. You just knew that you were in the midst of genius.

The few times that I saw Prince do interviews, I was struck by how funny, smart, and insightful he was.  I respected how true he was to himself always,  even when he stood alone, especially in the way he changed the music business by standing up for himself and his music.  Legend.

This weekend will be to appreciate the music Prince made, watch the almost non-stop media coverage, and send up a prayer for his safe passage as he begins the next journey. RIP Prince.

April Writing Challenge Day 7: Tattoo You

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Never my thing I must confess.  I associated tattoos as something that folks do in a borrachera or pendejada one night and then wake up regretting it!  I have seen many many people tattoo a person’s name on parts of their bodies, only to regret it and have to make changes to permanent ink.  In fact, I’ve seen a covered-up tattoo on my Dad’s arm and I’ve heard about the many body parts where people have put names of their loves — all I think about is how painful that must be.  As I was checking out tattoos online, I just had to check out ones with my name…they looked painful LOL.  Not that it’s likely, but if I were to get a tattoo, I could only handle my initial…no, not even that, I have NO tolerance for pain.

So when I saw this subject on the writing challenge, I almost skipped it…after all, who would know? who would check up on me? LOL   And then I thought I would put it out on social media to see what kind of response I would get…thanks to all that responded, I’ve learned a lot about why you get tattoos — mad respect to you for your bravery, tolerance for pain, and huevos to put your story out there for the world to see.  Some of us write, some of us want to be written on and read, as one would read a book.  This is what I came to appreciate the most:  that these tattoos all have special significance and it is a creative way to express yourselves and to mark major events and people in your lives…

Tattoos are dedicated to familia, children, parents, favorite singers, spiritual symbols, and even animals and cartoon figures…here are some of your responses…

DS:  I have 4, 2 are for my dad since he was cremated, so daily reminders of him and the man I want to be. 2 others are only 1/2 done that are going to be bucket list destination tattoos.

MT:  I have a bumblebee that I got the year Adriana turned 18, it represents perseverance. Then for Myda, I got a sunflower, she’s always been the sunshine in my life. I still need to add 3 butterflies, for Rocio, Ayda and Noemi. My 5 nieces are my girls and I love them very much.


YL:  I have 3 my first one is on my ankle and it’s a Rosario (rosary), it was my first one ever.  I was a troubled child and wanted a religious image….. My second is my kids initials on my left wrist and my third is on my neck, a butterfly to me it represents Jenni Rivera my favorite singer…. Mariposa!


BT:  I have a hello kitty peeking from the top of a big pink bow.  Well…Hello Kitty is timeless and I am a girly girl!


MH:  Mine is a cover up…I like it and would like another one!


JJ:  I have only 1, but it’s lil Kermit the frog. I’ve always loved frogs & have a huge collections. I got the tattoo to represent something I am, that I love.  I’m planning on getting one w/ my sisters as well. Something that shows the world our bond together.


NRV:  My sorority sister and I were supposed to get our first tattoo’s together. She was killed in Honduras at 19 in tragic car accident. I got what I had planned to get with her for my 21st birthday. When I was in my 20’s I went through a very rough patch and firmly believed that music saved me. I went to Mexico and got a clef note on my wrist. When Jose was born I had a vision of la Virgen G. I promised her I would always have roses for her. The three roses on my left foot are my kept promise, one for each member of my little family. When my grandpa and Tio died within months of each other, two very different, but amazing male presences in my life, I commemorated them with a little feather and the name of my grandpa’s favorite song, the way people like him and I live our lives, A Mi Manera. Finally, last year really kicked my butt. Between accidents, deaths in the family, and my parents’ incident, I found myself constantly seeking milagros. I now have a permanent reminder that regardless how difficult life gets, milagros do happen. Milagros exist.


CM:  I have dog tags in memory of my cousin that died in Afghanistan serving this country .I got it because he was more like my brother we were close an I wanted to carry his memory every where I go plus I love tattoos to me it’s like stained glass on a church and the beauty just radiates through!


HV:  All of my tattoos are for my family, one is the date my dad took his last heartbeat.  There is also one which is for my team!


Thanks ALL for helping me with this blog entry!

April Writing Challenge, Day 6: First 3 of Music Shuffle

April Writing Challenge, Day 6:

Put Your music player on shuffle and write about the first 3 songs that play…talk about those songs….

Song 1: Fue Un Placer Conocerte – Rocío Durcal
No brainer. Rocio Durcal is one the best singers of all time in my book. Since her passing a few years ago, I have yet to see a great female artist who worked it like Rocio. Born in Spain, she was like a Gidget type of artist, very poppy music and all that. It wasn’t until she recorded rancheras with el mariachi that she became internationally famous. I remember watching her on TV all of the time and I remember that she was Mama’s very favorite singer ever.
When I got into radio, Rocio’s music was one of the things that I could share with Mama. It’s funny, any one who knows me, knows that with all of the hook-ups that I had to concerts, etc., that my familia wasn’t really into that, so it was very rare to see my parents at any events where I was working. Except for Rocio: my mother was always ready to see Rocio in concert and I loved to be able to make this happen for her.
Somehow it always seemed to be me taking Mama to the casinos and you know how casinos are, in the middle of nowhere so it’s a guaranteed long drive. Some of my best memories were blasting Rocio Durcal in the car and watching Mama transform from tense and apurada to relaxed, happy, and she would sing LOUD too especially on the way to the casinos…on the way back, she would be lost in thought enjoying the music.  Mama had her favorite Rocio songs and so did I, but this song was one that we both LOVED…and would sing it a todo volumen, she did the high part, I did the low part LOL.  Here’s the super duo of Rocio Durcal and Juan Gabriel, “Fue Un Placer Conocerte”


Song 2:  Que Culpa Tengo, Little Joe y La Familia

omg!  This is one song that I regularly saaaaang in the Jeep at full blast!  It is one of the very first Tejano songs I heard in my life and it’s such a classic that always sounds good.  I must find a karaoke somewhere or have a few drinks and make my familia MTB back me up on this LOL.

I love the song because it’s kinda in your face, basically it’s “you knew how I was when you met me, NOW it’s a problem?”  These are my favorite songs ever to sing because there is no way that you can halfass this type of song, you really have to feel it, to be one beat short of letting out a grito when you sing it.   I’ve listened to enough Little Joe songs in my life to think that HE has to like these types of songs, because he sings so many of them, and has sung himself into legend-status.

As I was listening to this song, I was scrolling Facebook and see that my immensely-talented godson nephew MT3 was playing with his boss, Little Joe, in front of the Alamo for FiestaSanAntonio a few hours ago.  It’s so cool to watch familia workin it with this Tejano legend.  If I know MT3, he probably still gets a little starstruck and I looove that he’s out there repping our family name with the big boys.

The minute I heard Tejano music, I related INSTANTLY.  Related to the fact that I just KNEW that these guys were from this side of the border, speaking English first, Spanglish second LOL, loving our roots and having mad respect for the motherland but doing things our own way.    To hear Little Joe’s grito and shouting stuff in English like, “put it on!” like he does at the beginning of the song blew my mind out back in the day.   Here is “Que Culpa Tengo” by Little Joe y La Familia…classic.


Song 3:  Workin’ on a Groovy Thing, Patti Drew

First time I heard this song, it was when we were little and it was part of our Ita’s awesome record collection.  She may be a quiet and reserved person, but this lady has always loved music and especially this type of music.    My Grijalva cousins also loved this song so I heard it a lot as we hung out with them a lot back in the day.

The second time I remember hearing this song, sis Kiki was looking all over the place for a copy of this song, yes, this was before ‘You Tube’ and online radio.

A couple of years ago, I came upon this song on You Tube and really really got into it.  It’s one of the ones that I TRY to sing in the Jeep.  Sounds easy, but it’s a very hard song to sing and the one person who can really sing it and who has the air to hit all of the notes is, you guessed it, Kiki.

It’s also a great ‘driving’ song.  I drive so much that I need good music to keep me going!  Here’s Patti Drew, ‘Workin On A Groovy Thing’