Day 14 of Hispanic Heritage Month Photo Challenge: Hoy/Today #HHM15Foto

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As El Dia de Los Muertos approaches, I think about how much my life today is IN FLUX and going thru a lot of CHANGE. I’m still trying to find my way after Mama’s passing and, more than that, trying to figure out what I want to do and how I want to live the rest of my life. I feel good about whatever comes next because I know three things: God exists: there’s no way Mama could have gone weeks without food or drink before her passing, He took care of her and us. 2) Mama always calmed me down whenever I worried that the family wouldn’t be together, “you’re all too old to change now, you’ll always stay together” 3) This ‘giving myself away’ attitude ended on 11/11/2014 so whatever is next for me will be positive and right. Just like Mama said it would be LOL #HHM15Foto ‪#‎MargaretLivesInMe‬

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Day 13 of 15 Days of Hispanic Heritage Photo Challenge: Amor/Love #HHM15Foto

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Part of learning how to love oneself is to give love to others…it is so easy for me to love all of my ‪#‎TorresBabies‬. Seventeen godchildren niece nephews of all ages/sizes are the joy of our familia and, for me, just like my own children. I pray, worry, cheer them on, cry and laugh with them, and celebrate them. I may be in the pic with my YeziYesenia but you can put in the faces of any one of the TorresBabies17 and it wouldn’t make a difference the look on my face and in how I feel about them. Love love love them all! #HHM15Foto

Day 12 of 15 Days of Hispanic Heritage Photo Challenge: Mi Ciudad/My City #HHM15Foto

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I’ve been blessed to live in many places so it was hard to choose which city to feature in this post. In this past year, I pretty much came back ‘home’ to Lathrop, CA to care for Mama and, as I sit here with Dad, I know that it was the best decision.

Lathrop is still a whole lot of rancho and fields but it’s not wild wild west, there is Starbucks LOL. Whether I’m driving home from North or South, I know that I’m close to home when I see the fields that Tio Mundo used to work, when I drive by a certain river, when I see the road signs that lead to the Ranch.

My side of Lathrop is still quiet, comforting, and filled with family blessing me as I leave and welcoming me home. ‪#‎HHM15Foto‬

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Day 11 of 15 Days of Hispanic Heritage Photo Challenge: Inspiracion/Inspiration #HHM15Foto

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A lot of what I do requires a huge amount of self-motivation and getting inspired really helps: studying, writing, planning events, planning family activities, cleaning LOL.

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To get the inspiration flowing, I find that MUSIC inspires me best. When I am going to write, don’t ask me why, but I always start with music by Marco Antonio Solis songs. After I get into the writing groove, I’ll change up the music but it’s like Marco Antonio Solis is like a cup of cafe in the morning.

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When I’m planning events, I find that listening to a mixture of fast Old School, Ranchera and Banda songs get me moving in the right direction. With each song, I visualize each part of the event from the set-up to the day of event and I visualize it all going well!

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When I am going to socialize with friends: Smooth R&B – LOL I remember when it was straight-up party music, you better know we must be getting mellower.

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When I’m cleaning or when I’m in the office, my Pandora shuffle has EVERYTHING. Anyone who has had to sit my me in an office will tell you that my Pandora shuffle is the most diverse ever!

In the Torres Fam, we love any/all kinds of music! ‪#‎HHM15Foto‬

 

>>>>>>See videos below!

 

Marco Antonio Solis & Joan Sebastian:  La Venia Bendita

 

Earth Wind & Fire:  Got to Get You Get You Into My Life

 

Jenni Rivera – Ya Lo Se

 

Musiq Soulchild – Yes

 

Ruben Blades – Pedro Navaja

 

Day 10 of 15 Days Of Hispanic Heritage Photo Challenge: Aventuras/Adventures #HHM15Foto

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I know that the minute I post this entry, that I will have remembered many more adventures of my life!

This adventure happened when I was living in Denver,Colorado. I had never been around the snow in my life (and I loooooved it). This particular night, we noticed the snowstorm hit from a downtown remote and, after taking my crew home, I went back to the station in the Radio Romantica van. By then it’s really snowing and I’m wondering how bad it will be to get home. Like a sonsatontapendeja, I try and drive my car out of the parking lot and it was impossible so I turned back … yeah it was a BLIZZARD!

By the time I remembered that there was a Hilton across the parking lot, I had to WALK across that lot in snow that was almost to my waist. I ended up staying in that hotel for three days and there was no room service for one whole day because no one could get to work so I had my trusty box of Captain Crunch to hold me over.

Walking across that parking lot that night and hearing that weird wind felt like I was at Little House on the Prairie LOL. This is a pic of my car TWO days after the blizzard, as you can see I was going nowhere!  I had never seen anything like this and I was really amazed with Mother Nature and laughing at the stupidity of trying to drive in this mess!

I remember that Quique, the News Director, and I  had to go up on the roof and take the snow off of the satellites as the blizzard had knocked us off air and we needed to get back up on the air.  I wish we would have taken a picture of THAT!  It was hilarious trying to sweep off the snow as it was still snowing! ‪#‎HHM15Foto‬

Day 9 of 15 Days Of Hispanic Heritage Photo Challenge: Familia/Family #HHM15Foto

 

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Day 9 of 15DaysOfHispanicHeritage photos: Familia/Family.

Not enough words exist in the Spanish or English language to say how important familia is to me. My parents both lost a parent at a very young age, my paternal grandfather was gunned down in front of my father and my maternal grandmother died of cancer. Although it was traumatic for my parents both to lose a parent at a young age, it is beyond amazing that they were able to instill in us Torres5 the importance of staying together no matter what and that family is everything.

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Both Mike and Margaret have told us how much we Torres5 are loved which is so important for a child to hear and know.  Above is a recent pic of Grandpa and Great-Grandpa Mike with some of his grand- and great-grandchildren.

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Some of us at the Ranch celebrating Mother’s Day earlier this year!

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I also love that we grew up with our extended familia at the Ranch and that Mama made sure that we hung out with our Grijalva fam as well. Now we have to keep the tradition going with the future generations of our family. No family is perfect and not all is perfect but all is most def right in the world when all is right with familia. #HHM15Foto

 

Below please find The Fabulous 5 of our Ranch, the rocks of our family!  Tia Elvira (Tio Mundo RIP), Tia Lili, Dad, Tia Becky, Tia Chayo, and Tio Freddy.

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Below is the future of our familia…the littlest Torres babies:  Lucia, Olivia, Yesenia, and King!  Love our bebitos!

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Day 8 of 15 Days of Hispanic Heritage Photo Challenge: Pasion/Passion #HHM15Foto

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The one thing that brings me a lot of joy, brings me a lot of peace, allows me to be creative and inspired, keeps me connected to others in the most positive way, embraces my ‘chismosa‘ side, saves me money on a psychiatrist as it is an excellent form of therapy, and something that has “forced” me to get up out of dead sleep and get out of my comfort zone, something that I “have” to do. My passion is WRITING. The only time that I truly stop writing and lose my inspiration is when I forget to listen to my Inner Chingona. Whether I’m at a laptop, tablet, or writing old-school style with a pen into one of my many journals, I am happiest when I am writing! ‪#‎HHM15Foto‬

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Day 7 of 15 Days of Hispanic Heritage Photo Challenge: Tiempo/Time #HHM15Foto

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Time. Never seems to be enough time. Time heals all wounds. Take Your Time. Todo A Su Tiempo. Dale Tiempo Al Tiempo.  So many ways to look at the concept of time.  In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, I will focus on “Mexican Time”!  #HHM15Foto

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Mexican Time = Arriving on your own clock, not on the world’s clock.   Usually, this means that one never arrives at the appointed time of an appointment, celebration, meeting, etc. but rather arrives LATER than the appointed time.   Especially at parties and celebrations, if the start time is say 2pm, folks may not start arriving until well after 3pm!  It’s like no one wants to be the first one to arrive!  I’m not completely proud of this but it is what it is. I thought that it was just me, but it appears that my beloved mexicanos and Mexican Americanos all have problems with time!

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A couple of my colleagues swear by arriving early everywhere – up to a half hour early everywhere.   I always tell them that I wish that I could be like that and arrive everywhere on-time and stress-free.

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That sounds like a New Year’s Resolution in-the-making.  Good thing that I still have 3 months to think about making this change in my life.   omg, am I thinking about future changes to my life on “Mexican Time”?

Day 6 of 15 Days of Hispanic Heritage Photo Challenge: Colores/Colors #HHM15Foto

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Green has always been my favorite color but I really LOVE the vibrant colors of Mexico Lindo y Querido…the brighter the better, I see them on my Dad’s zarapes, on the ballet folkorico dresses, on houses, and who doesn’t have one of the classic painted flowers on the wooden plates? Mexican colors rock!‪#‎HHM15Foto‬

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Day 5 of 15 Days of Hispanic Heritage Photo Challenge: Celebraciones/Celebrations #HHM15Foto

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I have often said that I have been an event planner my entire life which l learned how to do by coordinating celebrations for my familia, no easy task people LOL. There is nothing more stressful because I want to get it right for them always and there is nothing more satisfying to see us happy and together and I am convinced that a family who prays and celebrates together, stays together!  The pic above is from Daddy’s 80th Birthday celebration a few weeks ago.

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The Mike Torres Band New Year’s Eve Gala ringing in 2015!  Decorations were in Mama’s favorite color PINK as it was our first without her.

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One of our Ranch Mother’s Day celebrations from a couple of years ago…we had gotten up at the crack of dawn to serenade all of the Moms on the Ranch … or was this the time we did Las Mananitas for their birthdays?

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Our Stephen celebrating his graduation from SFSU in 2014 with his soul mate Mama and Nina Chris and Stephen I photobombing.  This was a happy day.

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A few weeks ago, Sabrina left the Ranch for the US Army and the Hernandez Fam planned a fun and emotional send off for our girl.  Sabrina is the lil one in the middle.

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One of my favorite pictures ever!  Our Ranch Halloween/Dia de Los Muertos Celebration from a couple of years ago…a very fun day and hoping that this year’s event will be a good one too!

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We celebrated our Ita as she turned 70 at her other home in Yuba City a few years back…I remember we all went on the MTB bus and it was so fun to be with our other Mom and our Yuba familia.

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Very hard to top this day 11-11-11, the day Mike and Margaret turned 50.  We wanted to give them the best party ever and I think we achieved our goal – love love love our parents.

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Our Ranch Christmas is legendary and we’ve done it since like forever.  I love how happy Tia Becky gets every year. We do a Christmas play with the kids, Dad and the fam sing Las Posadas, there are tamales and a huge Nacimiento (Nativity) and, of course, “Santa”

I have literally thousands of pictures from all of the celebrations and I treasure them all!  Make time to celebrate the important events and people in your life!