Sad Day in San Miguel Del Zapote

LOBO our dog.

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My kids hug him, and receive kisses from him all the time, when everyone else “shoo’s” him away. He is huge, stinky and a flea bag.
From the moment we arrived, Lobo followed us everywhere. J took us on a tour of the town, and Lobo came with. Every time I took the kids to “El Campo”, he came with. Every time we went to local businesses for groceries, he came with. Every time we went to “El Jardin” he came with. If I went alone he came with, if they went alone, he would go with.

Our dog Lobo went to Doggie Heaven.

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He wasn’t actually ours, but belonged to Tia Rafa across the street. A long time ago Lobo went missing. Apparently he had jumped out of the truck on the way home from the mountains. After a long time, in Zalcoalco, a town 30 minutes away, the family saw a dog that had been burned but was very excited to see them. Lobo rode back home that day 7 years ago, with J.

We never had the heart to make him go home when we went to “El Jardin”, even if he was always run off by other people, because he was a menace there. He would take food from little kids and looked for attention from people who didn’t want to get their hands dirty. We didn’t have the heart to send him home…. Until this day.

It’s sad really, our last memory of him we were not very nice. He was a great companion.

The way he left us is really gruesome. I tried keeping it from Elaina. Apparently, they told everyone, even small children. She started talking about it yesterday.

WARNING: Stop reading NOW if you don’t care to know the details!

Elaina said “Lobo”
Put her hand to her neck and ran it across.
Then closed her eyes and stuck out her tongue.

A day ago I heard a seven year old say she went to go see all the blood. I also heard a child younger than Elaina mention it.
J had to work, but when he got home he asked where he was he wanted to bury him. Unfortunately, they had paid the trash people to take the head away. The rest of him was taken with the train.

DOD: Tuesday July, 23, 2013

The Real World Mexico

El Jardin

El Jardin

Everyone would have thought this is my kind of town. I mean I am a party girl at heart. Well at least I used to be before I had kids. J has really got me used to going to bed at 9 P.M. Every night we now take a stroll to “El Jardin”, also known as “La Plaza”. It’s almost expected we make an appearance every single night. You have to have a good reason not to go from the extended family. And there is a whole lot of family you have to answer to. It’s like a party every night, especially on weekends. We went to the first of many “Quincenera’s”. Our first Saturday here and they have given us the long list to come. Well into September and that’s when the “Fiestas” start. I don’t know the difference but you will be the first to know.

First Break on the way to La Presa

First Break on the way to La Presa

Sunday we were supposed to go to a Baptism in Verdia, J’s birth town but we skipped it. Not my idea, I would have much rather have stuffed my face with free food and beer. The boys wanted to go to the “Presa” which is a man made watering hole up in the mountain. J said it wasn’t far so we decided to pack some water and take a hike. Hmmf. I know his plans were to leave me there for dead. I almost died twice. I wasn’t going to give him the satisfaction. I made it up that hideous mountain. Thank God for that boost the last quarter of a mile. We walked back down, much easier walk.

At el Picarete without the zing for the kids.

At el Picarete without the zing for the kids.

Culture shock understatement: We kid around about it being 12 O’clock somewhere. Here people wake up like zombies, and first thing on their mind is “El Pajarete”. You can have you fresh milk, with coffee, chocolate, and a shot (that’s an understatement) of alcohol. J and I can’t hang with these folks. I don’t know one person from home who could hang…. Okay I know one person, and she lives in Austin, TX. Then we hear them nightly just outside our window as we hit the sack still at it. I told him he better get up for work as we truly living the “Vida Broka”. I doubt he will ever hear Grandma Isabel say “Juan Billetes” again.
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It’s safe for you to visit. No danger here… sorry there is one danger. It has taken lives of cows, bunnies, trucks and yes people. The Train. Sadly we are like thirty feet from the tracks.

Meet our pets. Yes two dogs, two chicks, and the newest addition the kitten. Still they want the bunny and the donkey.
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Lost Count Of My Blessings!

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When everyone else is counting blessings, we have lost count. We are together since Saturday, July 6 we crossed the border into Mexico around 11 am. I saw J standing there waiting for us on the bridge between Matamoros, Mexico and Brownsville, Texas.

Let me tell you, when crossing the border you MUST declare what you have over your limit. The kids and I are allowed $75.00 each. Had J crossed with us because he is from Mexico he would be allowed $300.00, but he didn’t. In reality we were only allowed to cross $225.00 without paying taxes. We had well over $400 in just tools, my laptop, Johnny’s computer, camera, two bicycles, a flat screen TV, and the top of the truck was loaded with about 8 Large luggage’s. We declared TWICE what we had, I had more than allowed. At BOTH stations, they let us threw without paying.

We were going through a small town, chatting, and we didn’t notice the drop in speed limit. A State Police stopped us for speeding; we were going about 20 above. He told us because our truck was not from Mexico he would have to take up the truck until the fine was paid, or else we would never pay the ticket and disappear. Then after talking to J for a few minutes, he said to be more careful and to watch for speed limits.

While our stay at the first Motel, J did not sleep a wink. He almost didn’t let me sleep, the last time he woke me it was like 3 AM, telling me it wasn’t safe. Apparently, there were some guys who kept walking to the front of our room, stopping, and walking away. I saw them, but I told him, do you think God would let them steal from us after all he has done? When we woke up the next morning, nothing had been touched.

Then, close to Guadalajara, at a road block, we were asked to pull over that our bicycles were being illegally transported. Although, super secure to our front grill, he said it was “Article 300” that bicycles could not be transported in the front. Had I had the opportunity to talk to him, I would have been thrown in Jail. J did all the talking and again we were sent on our way after he tied the bicycles in the back on top of the cooler.

All theses close calls we were let go without a MORDIDA. What Mexico Police is known for, a payoff.

Then there was the most perfect weather. Beautiful! When we started to fear overheating, God gave us rain.  When we started to fear the wet road, he then gave us sunshine. Always there with what we needed.

We have now walked J’s hometown, and a cute little town it is. The kids have met their Visabuelos (great grandparents) Mama Lupe and Papa Angel. They have met an infinite amount of uncles, aunts, and cousins. Everyone here seems to know us even people we haven’t been introduced to. While J was at work I took them to the soccer field and we were stopped and asked if we were Manuelito’s family. They have all been expecting us. Glad to say we feel welcomed and right at home.
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Unlike the story my dad told me the first time he visited my mom’s town of Durango, we do not have to go potty in the pig pen, or use corn husk as toilet paper. Phew! He had me scared at first.

Todas Las Gracias Las Debo A Ti!

People say, blood is thicker than water.  People say family first.  Here is my family. 

These people who are dear to my heart are people whom I don’t expect anything from.  They don’t owe me a thing, yet they are there for my family through thick and thin.  No one on the face of this earth owes me a thing, I am not entitled to any special treatment.  Yet, these people actually ride or die.

When crap hits the fan, they grab a shovel.

His friends are the families he worked for. Yes they are his friends. You see, J was hired an attorney by these friends. The attorney said there was nothing that could be done in his case, & his friends apologized for not being able to do more.    I only wish I had a picture of them, sadly I don’t, but in my heart they are my friends as well.

My sister-in-law who helped me pack. & nephew helped my dad hang sheetrock.

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My aunt who worries about my choices yet did everything she could and got me my mother’s birth certificate so I can apply for my dual citizenship.

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Lil Brother who always digs me out of every financial hole I have ever dug myself into.

My Brother & his beautiful Family.

My Brother & his beautiful Family.

My dad, no matter what I do he is still my daddy and he breaks his back (literally) helping me as much as he can.

My Daddy

My Daddy

My Grandmother for giving me rides when I need them, and taking care of the kids.

Grandma and Great Grandma!

Grandma and Great Grandma!

My friends since 6th grade. 21 years of friendship. It hasn’t been all fun. It hasn’t been all fair. It is the greatest affection for people who are not related.

Rebecca brought her husband Nate, and her dad to help me move one beautiful weekend. When I am sure they would have much rather spent it inside their air-conditioned home gaming with their kids. 

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Christina has helped me every weekend, and weekdays after her 8 to 5 J.O.B. and has brought the most awesome babysitters, painters, and muscle I could have asked for. There is no way, I could ever thank her and her kids enough even if I thanked them everyday till my dying day. 

SUPER Friends

SUPER Friends

Leah is lending me her very talented husband to fix some wood flooring issues so that I can rent my house out in decent shape.

Everyone needs that simple friendship.  The most innocent of friendships.  This is mine.

Everyone needs that simple friendship. The most innocent of friendships. This is mine.

Wait then there is those awesome people most new to my life and blessed that they opened their hearts to our new friendship.  Andrea and Jose on a very important and special Saturday they lent their time to help me move, before rushing home to send off their beautiful daughter to prom.

My Friends for life, Andrea and Jose

My Friends for life, Andrea and Jose

They are angels who come out just when you need them.  The Friends who are not there every day because life goes on, but without you having to ask they just do.

I am grateful to you and I apologize for any amount of time you all have lost.

I want to also take the time to thank my Kids.  They have lugged more than their share.  Sweated their little hearts out pulling boxes to heavy for them to carry.  Pulling nails from stubborn studs.  Painted, although they think that part was fun.

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It may have taken an extra month, year, decade before I go.   Thanks to you, it will not be long. 

I do know that God wants us together, we want to be together, and we will soon be together.

I am not there yet, but I am one step closer than yesterday.

All thanks to those featured here.

Here kitty kitty.

Free Kitty for a person of a cheery disposition
Never be cross or cruel,
Never give her castor oil or gruel,
Love her as a daughter,
& never smell of barley water,
If you won’t scold and dominate her,
I will never give you cause to hate her.

(-merry poppins)
 

J bought his princess a kitten. When we yell at Elaina to leave the poor thing alone because she is laying on her or sitting on top of her, so kitty won’t leave her side, this is how she puts it “I lub har, and I kiss har, and I lube har, and I kiss har, and I lub har, and I kiss har”.

The boys from the get go asked if we would be taking Katfish with us. I naturally said,”yes”. How hard could it be? I should have looked into it sooner. It’s not that it’s hard. It’s just more of a financial burden.

Only Dogs and Cats can be taken into Mexico without special import a permit, that’s the good news. It doesn’t apply to me so I didn’t even look into it. Sorry, but I’m exhausted of research. If Katfish were to go with us, I would need to have her checked out by a licensed veterinarian approved by the state to issue her a Healthcare Certificate, and get her shots, no more than fifteen days before we leave.

J is Katfish’s favorite. He fed her and cleaned her litter. He tells me to find her a home, but doesn’t tell them (the kids). He talked to Elaina and told her “Elaina, I am buying you a baby donkey, so you can ride it.” She replies “and a talking unicorn?!?!?”

If you know a great Vet who can do the following work for less it would be greatly appreciated.

Office Visit $40.00
Rabies Shot $20.00
Distemper Shot $30.00
Certificate of Health $100.00

OTHERWISE, I am the one who has to break the news to the kids. This won’t be fun. P.S. I rented my house and need to find Katfish a new home by Thursday if not back to SPCA she goes. She is spayed and has that chip to locate her if she gets lost.

Katfish and her worst nightmare.

Katfish and her worst nightmare.

Where is J?

So I get a whole bunch of text messages, calls, and e-mails asking where our beloved J is actually at. I am Point (A) Pasadena, TX and he is Point (B) In a small town an hour outside of Guadalajara, Jalisco.  We are 9 miles shy of 1,000 miles between us.  Let’s just say 1,000 I am bound to get lost once or twice on our way there.  Google maps says it’s a 16 hour drive, but we won’t be driving nights so it will be at least two days if we get an early start.  Yeah that’s going to happen because I am an upsie daisy, early bird gets the worm, morning person!

This Map shows our future home.  Question is Where on this map is it?

This Map shows our future home. Question is Where on this map is it?

Point (C) San Blass, Playa Borrego – Where we could possibly live near Puerto Vallarta but not so touristic and still on the WEST Coast, That H20 we love to see, crystal clear blue. I picked this place because if we come across any trouble we can run back to family only 4 hours away.

If you know us at all, you would know this is so us.

Point (D) San Miguel del Allende – A friend of a friend. We heard this friend wants to move back to the US and their home has a guest house. They need someone to look out for their vacation home I suppose. Alas, that would be ideal, but it may be too good to be true.

If I go here I want to take this exact photo.

Point (E) Tampico – Grandma wants us to go there. It’s where she is from and claims the water is beautiful there. Dad disagrees, says it’s still the Gulf. We don’t care but being near the ocean would be a dream come true regardless.

It looks blue, but I did see a few others that looked like we could have taken in Galveston.

Point (F) Cancun – J has a friend there. Who says there is plenty of work for him. J is a procrastinator and hasn’t even called him. Highly unlikely we will go here to live but we will go.

Well we all know….

Then there is the purple markings.  The one on the border is where I would like to live so I could cross my kids over to school every morning and I could work and earn USA money.  Except the danger is to high, so we will skip that.  Then there  is Durango, where my mother was from.  I haven’t visited since I was eleven, from what I remember it may have been fun but I would be heading home in two weeks for sure.  Cabo, because the only way some “Friends” will visit, if they come on a cruise ship.  All three places highly unlikely.  More like no it isn’t going to happen.

We have considered many places, and we won’t decide until we are together. I sure would like somewhere my family and best buds are not afraid to visit. They have all said, “no way Jose” when I tell them to vacation with me. I will remind them once the first daring person joins us for some fun and they are begging to come. 

Jupiter Jumping June

As in busy as a bee, lots on my plate, overloaded, swamped! It’s crunch time.

1. I just have to finish moving out.

2. Find renters for both houses, sign contracts, and get deposits.

3. Doctor’s appointments for the kids on two different days (they only see two at a time, I have 3). I am going to beg for diarrhea medicine in anticipation that they will get sick when we get there.  I don’t know what else to beg for, so if you have any suggestions that would be awesome.

4. One last visit I need to make to the DMV Department of Motor Vehicles.

5. Court date from an accident and hopefully my last court date I have done everything they have asked for.

6. Plus one full day at the Mexican Consulate. (more info in a bit)

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Must tell you I received my USA PASSPORT! Finally ONE thing accomplished. It only took a month and a day.

The kids passport documents I sent first but remember they put a hold on them for the DS-3053 needed from J with a time limit.

I received J’s notarized forms, copy of his Mexican ID, and Original Birth Certificate May 30th 2013 (PERFECT ANNIVERSARY GIFT), and I forwarded DS-3053’s to the US Passport agency the following day. Let’s hope they speed it up and I get all the birth certificates back before our first appointment at the Mexican Consulate to start Dual citizenship for all of us on June 19th. Why do I say the first appointment? Well, because they do the process in steps and it’s a different appointment for each step.

Did you read that right? Yes all of us have appointments. Remember, I explained the visa process in a previous blog, but since we are all lucky enough to have one parent from Mexico we can skip all those shenanigans, except, I didn’t have my mother’s Mexico Birth Certificate as she died when I was 12. All her brothers and sisters are here but thanks to one of my aunts she contacted aunts and cousins who were kind enough to lend me their time, drive to the big city, pay the fees, and search for her certificate themselves. No, they don’t have the luxury of ordering them online. Not only did they retrieve it but hand delivered it to Houston. It’s not actually in my hands but it is here and will definitely have it by my appointment time!

This brings me to the many thanks that I owe and I owe more than I can count….. No that deserves a post all of its own.

Is that all?