Babysitting Adventures On The Plate

On this down time I’ve been spending a lot of my day’s home with Elexis. She just turned three. Very bossy. Although she’s definitely entertaining with those adult mannerisms and attitude of we must not stop playing. We have our disagreements. I can’t let her watch cartoons the entire day, but not to say there aren’t days when we can get super relaxed on the couch.

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It’s almost from the time she wakes up to the time she’s going to bed. It’s like she is just hanging out at this restaurant. Of course I’m the waiter, the host, the chef, and even the imaginary lion that puts on a show after lunch. It’s a nice exchange we got going. She knows how to get the place messy.

All day I’m bringing out plates of food to her custom pink princess table. The plates are different dishes but remember the customer is always right. Egirl is the customer in this case, so if something doesn’t meet her approval, she has no problem sending it back.

We switch off cooking for each other though. Her food is plastic and imaginary, yet so delicious and filling. Elexis is sweet with her service. Except for when she gets distracted or busy. A lot on her plate. Always funny to see Egirl throwing plastic hamburger patties across the room. I don’t know if this is bad service or just some futuristic way getting food delivered to you by the chef which so happens to be the waiter.  She is teaching me a thing or two.

It’s nice to be around Elexis, to be able to be around that childlike mentality. Being three again, so open to what’s happening. Asking questions over and over in hopes new information will unfold. Perhaps maybe the answer will even change if I continue to pursue. The obliviousness, to be so caught up in your own imaginary world. Not paying attention to anything else, lost in focus. To be able to step out of that adult box.  Egirl makes the world fun for me.

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We always put this puzzle together. Usually as Egirl is dumping them all over the living room floor she screams, “Uncle, can you help me.” The puzzle picture is dinosaurs. It was a gift she had gotten for her birthday. We have completed the puzzle quite a few times and it’s always interesting to watch Egirl run into problems as we put it together. Two parts that don’t go with each other and she’s forcing them to work with each other. Or she’ll have the right piece but it just needs to be turned a little. She figures it out.

So last weekend she asks me to help with the puzzle, of course I agree and we begin. As we start to get closer to the end, she seems to start to lose interest. Almost like it’s boring. The puzzle is near completed and there is one piece missing. E girl starts to get confused. It’s almost like I can see her visualize her toy inventory. She looks around the premises. Underneath the couch. She checks the puzzle container. This piece is nowhere to be found.

A little odd putting a puzzle together and not having the last piece. Just as I’m about to start the that’s-why-we-put-our-toys-away-speech, I roll up from the ground and get up off the floor. We both see the missing piece right where I was at. Priceless.

Tough Stuff

I am like a week away from my first interview since graduating. And I won’t lie; I am little worried about what they’ll ask me during the interview. Maybe throw a question at me, I didn’t even think they could ask. What would that even be? Whatever they ask, I just hope I don’t choke.

You know this blog is really just another way for me to doodle these moments in my life here on a post. I can reflect on these experiences and share with anyone who takes the time. I remember this one time when we were still young and my brother and I were at my Aunt Rachael’s house. As kids we enjoyed going to our auntie’s house. Not only did she cook good but we also had the best times playing with our cousins. I would even get permission to ride the bus to her house after school. We always wanted to go there.

But there was this one time when we were all at my aunty Rachael’s house doing something. I can’t remember clearly why we were all there, but my mom was not there, I would have remembered her panicking. Well one of our relatives suddenly started choking on a piece of cheese. I was young, so I panicked of course, yet it was my older cousin that got put to the real test.

Clinton was the second oldest of my auntie’s sons. He was this child genius. I remember my aunty would hang up all his awards and certificates, and she would always fill the wall with his achievements. He definitely was a smart kid and I surely thought his brain would keep him cool during this time of stress. But it was pretty much the opposite when the cheese got stuck.

So Clinton was the closest to the phone and everyone yelled for someone to call someone. Call emergency. You know those moments of panic put you in a dumbfounded state. Even to this day I just remember being frozen.  I had to have been 6 or 7 maybe younger, and so Clinton was at older than 10. He gets the phone and I’ll never forget what happen next. The phone is in the kitchen and the person choking is in the living room. Clinton in so much confusion, he yells out, “What’s the number?”

Everyone screams out the three numbers.

You know by the time Clinton got a hold of the emergency operator, the cheese had been spit up. It was a brief moment of horror and at the end of it all, we were glad to just be safe and breathing.

The food expression of the post, “tough pill to swallow,” sometimes the truth does not sound so pretty. But even though things can be challenging or can put you in a awkward position, that doesn’t need to interrupt the overall drive. You almost need to remember the main goal or dream your trying to create. That tough pill may be hard going down and even might cause a bitterness aftermath. But eventually it will be something that you will need swallow. Don’t be chicken and chew on that.

New Flavors For The Tasting

The past couple of posts as been me trying to explain this mentality or way of living. This concept or idea of not being so possessive of expectations, almost being free of them, letting your attitude and positivity guide you through life. It’s hard to explain, but how I see it, or how I comprehend it all is that you must know where you come from? Where have I been? But then you need to also think about where you are going? Where do I want to be? What do I want to happen? The more hardest part of this understanding  is partly not only answering these questions but also try to harness the values of both the past and the future and how do I incorporate all of this in present.

Now is where it is at.

The past is in the past, and the future is far away, so far that you may not get the chance to see it. Be great now and remember there is always room to grow. I must sound like a broken record player, but the records do work.

The food expression comes to mind, “all your eggs in one basket,” when trying to explain this way of thinking. The food expression is referring to not having all your hope on one specific outcome or option.  In life you have to be open. Spice things up. I guess I can see why people say to have a back-up plan, or a plan a, b, and c. I guess the back-up plan almost feels like your saying the main idea flew through. But the truth is that in life you have to adjust and be ready for things unexpected. To take a positive route to where you need to be rather than one that is filled with expectations and misconceptions. It’s like I can be stressed out but I also can be happy with where I’m at and where I’m going. The stress is only weight to carry for thought.

Short & sweet.

I am open to try these new flavors and I have no expectations on how great they will taste.

Moving Forward – Food For Thought

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I need to be inspired by everything. All that is around me, is what makes me who I am. In the grand scheme of things, I am only an average guy providing my two cents on the matter at hand. Take what I say with a grain of salt because in the end, I can only attempt to be a jack of all trades, but I can only be a master of one, and that is error. The words you use are power. So if you can take away anything positive that I write, then I am deeply touched and can only say that anything I’ve said that sounded good, you were probably already thinking. Greatness is everywhere, so do dabble.

So much of these reflection have to do with this article that got published  in the Tohono O’odham Community College newsletter. I had written the article in 2010, when I was still a student, going to school in sells. The article really opened up things for me, and I was really able to have a piece of my writing justify all this clarity in my head.

I was able to do so much. And now that I think about it; if I had not written the article, would my life be where it’s at now? How much of my life would have changed?

I bring this up because this article is being republished. The city of Tucson has a annual folklore festival called Tucson Meet Yourself, and for the festival they produce a magazine. But they want my writing to be in the magazine. They saw my article I had written years ago and thought it would be cool to republish it. So now I’m making minor adjustments to the piece. It’s humbling to know that people like your work, but to know that your work is going to be in a magazine. Cool beans.

On top of the publication for the TMY magazine, I also got a call from one of the places I applied for a couple of months back. Asking if I was still interested in the position. I’m happy, but also surprised by the opportunity at getting a job. Mines for the taking, got an interview at the end of the month.

Things are looking up for me and I see my efforts really glowing. So much of the time you can spend worrying about the hardships of life and not be able to see the real life scenery actually around you. Everything around you has something to offer and my blog is only a grain of salt.

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“You don’t know what the river is like or what the ocean is like by standing on the shore. You can’t know anything about life and suppose you can get through it clean.”

-James Baldwin

Cigar And A Piece Of Cake

In this life I am learning to be more flexible with how I understand the way the world works. I was reading the first post ever and started reflecting on who I was when I first started writing the blog before I was through with school. It seemed as though I was over thinking the entire struggle. And I overcame all of that but I’m still left feeling like I need more to learn. I have experienced success but not enough to feel content. I am still very much the wild child needing some kind of structure. The world is like an unending puzzle that you can only attempt to solve. Bittersweet.

This post is monumental for me. At some point in time this storiesfrommystomach was just an assignment for class when I was a student at the U of A. I said that I would only do 20 posts and then I would stop. Although in reality I just kept at it. But even now I still try to figure out creative ways to incorporate new things involving food into the blog. Any who. This very post I’m typing on now, is the 50th one. Half of a hundred, but I still keep it one hundred. It’s been nearly a year and I still feel full of stories to share.

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I had to have a blog for an assignment in order for me to realize that blogging is something that I wanted to do. So stubborn now that I write it out. I guess it’s a confidence thing. But now that I been introduced into the blog game, I’m definitely going to see if I have what it takes to get to one hundred. Let’s talk then, have a beer or glass of wine. Laugh about the moment were in now. Keep it one hundred.

Also taking that time to reflect on the beginning of the blog as made me aware of my own presence. That my future is sincerely in my hands and that if I wanted this blog to work, well then I was going to need to be motivated from within. And honestly I have noticed that my day-to-day dialogue with people has become more of a writing focus. It almost gives me a reason to talk more and be open about myself. Everyone has a story and mine is just as great.

Two sides to this story. Even though you prosper in life. The expectations of others and even the expectations of yourself should not always be a concern when it comes to doing the things you really need to do. I don’t mean to sound so contradictive but there is always room for improvement. Yes we give the day our best effort. But that effort must morph and change in order to contain the greatness. It reminds me of the saying, “close, but no cigar” because even though you accomplish something, the results aren’t what you hoped for.  I’m not saying always scrutinize yourself for everything you do but always be looking for the next opportunity to grow and learn. The need to improve is really within. So maybe I don’t need a cigar, but getting one for my actions does sound like icing on the cake.

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You may not always have all the required ingredients for the expected recipe, but that doesn’t mean that you are incapable of creating a great meal.

Be flexible and keep it one hundred.

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Grapevine Speaking To Me

 There are so many food expressions and to hear something through the grapevine is like saying, “someone else told me.” The grapevine is a metaphorical vine of information. Of course the song, “heard it through the grapevine” is popular reference to this way of gaining information about a certain someone.

The power of music, am I right? The ability of a piece of music to channel a certain type of feeling or emotion, and still makes you want to groove. A song can generates these feelings within yourself and you can’t help yourself but to start to wiggle your butt. That gentle tap in your foot. Start nodding your head to the beat.

People will always talk and say thing to you that you will not always want to hear. But that’s life. John Keats famous lines to the conclusion to his poem entitled Ode on a Grecian Urn he writes:

“Beauty is truth, truth beauty,” – that is all

Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.

Keats brings up a valid point and I feel that beauty is in everyone and everything because there is some truth in them. There is beauty everywhere if given the right amount of care and patience. Almost as if it needs to be seen in the perfect scope. It is very easy to call something ugly because you don’t understand what’s in front of you.

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I just get reminded of this moment I had when I was 6 or 7, I was really young. So I was at the store with my Aunt Rachael, think it was target. We were at the checkout, and I’m waiting for my Aunty to pay for her stuff. There is another checkout with a line of customers, right next to the line were in. So there is a lady paying for things at the same my Aunt is paying for hers. The lady next to us has a daughter that was probably the same age as young me.

So the store is fully functioning and I happen to make eye contact with this girl. Then out of nowhere, she winks at me. Very cute move on her part, but me being the kid I was, I need to retaliate. I still remember this time like it can’t leave my brain. So she winks at me and I need to reply with something.

What could I do? This is what I do. I stick my tongue at her. So childish. But anyways my Aunt see’s me sticking my tongue at the girl and gets mad at me for acting inappropriate. We leave the store and I never see the girl again. You know I did feel bad leaving the store because my Aunt scolded me for my tongue action.

This moment is somehow related to what I was saying about everything being beautiful. Even when things go wrong or people act inappropriate, there is still something to be learned, something to be gained. I guess what I’m saying is that something can be seen as ugly but deep down inside there is so much beauty we have yet to take to time to notice.

Fast forward to now and I’m just as clueless. Hypothetically of course, if there was a pretty girl winking at me a target? I still don’t know what my counter (facial expression) move would be. But if it’s a girl I really like, I might need to stick with my classic move. Sticking out my tongue is all I got.

Butter yourself up

You look so fine

All this knowledge I’m spilling

Heard it through the grapevine.

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Old Recipes Remembering Not To Choke On That Foot In Your Mouth


“A friend is one that knows you as you are, understands where you have been, accepts what you have become, and still, gently allows you to grow.” ~ Shakespeare

Being kids growing up I have the fondest memories hanging out and playing with my older cousins. My Aunt Rachael had three sons and they picked on us every chance they got. We enjoyed it though. I think when we were younger it was easier to grab us and put us in a room. We all got separate lives all over so very rarely do we congregate. But as kids we just would be constantly joking around, staying up late, and running around in Ali Cukson. My cousins were way older than my brother and I, we looked up to them and felt like we could challenge them at all times.

Calvin the oldest of the three brothers still keeps in contact me. We never hangout, usually just have random phone calls, and text message conversations. It’s been so long since we’ve seen Calvin that he has never even been to our new house. The house that we’ve been staying at for over a year. Shows how rarely we see each other.

You know things in life change and you just have to adjust. But what else is important is that you noticed the things in life that you can’t change. Whatever that may be, being able to harness your own greatness and still not letting outside things control your state or being. I don’t use the word happiness because everyone has their own definition of the word.

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So this one evening I was home watching my niece on the weekend. I always volunteer to watch E-girl because we have a blast watching cartoons and riding the big bike around the house. And were waiting for E-girl’d dad to get off work and I get a call from my mom saying that Calvin was coming with her to see the house and to visit.

I always have a fun time trying to see things from Elexis’s perspective. She just turned three and there is still a bunch of family members she hasn’t met yet. It’s almost like we need to catch her up on all the past memories. In time. So this would be the first time Calvin and E-girl would meet.

Of course Calvin notices the similarities in mannerism that my brother had at her age. Both are Gemini. It can be strange at times because it’s like watching my little brother grow up again. But it is different, she plays with dolls and acts like a girl. It is different because we were all boys. Elexis is inviting to everybody and does an excellent job as host. Maybe she just likes to be the center of attention. Clever kid.

We all had a fun time reminiscing about the old times. It’s weird because at one point in the timeline of our life. When my mom was at the U of A, working in Tucson, we lived in an apartment.  My brother and I were still in grade school but Calvin was in his mid twenties looking for a job. He stayed with us and we really learned a lot from him being around.

Fast forward to now and were still cracking jokes on each other. But we’ve definitely out grew some of the childish behavior. We passed that torch to E-girl. Let her go bananas.

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