Saturday, January 31, 2009

More Tube Updates

No body told me that "Hell's Kitchen" had started already, darn I missed the first episode. Memo to me, remember to set it up on the DVR, I need me a doze of Chef Ramsey. I wonder what the difference is between cooking because you love to cook as mi chica or my mom do and to cook because you have to. Mi chica can come home tired from a long work day and yet make a quick transition into the kitchen where instead of her being pressured because she has to cook she actually used the time cooking to relax and unwind.

A huge difference in the two styles is the fact that a chef must have recipes, and rely on measured amounts of ingredients, my mom and mi chica rely on their memory and their mood at the time of cooking to add or withhold ingredients, and they too can cook for two or twenty with no problem. Anyway, I hope I don't forget to watch it next week. Umm, I wonder how Christina is doing?

So, in a mixture of scenes from New York to Puerto Rico and back the last of the American Idol auditions episode finally aired. Since all this is prerecorded the Internet has leaked a lot of the Hollywood losers and winners. Me, I rather wait to see it when it airs, otherwise what is the point. Some people do have the need to know in advance what's happening. The first kid from Puerto Rico sang in Spanish and then he was asked if he could sing in English. I think he did pretty good, Kara said you sounded more convincing in your Spanish song, but the English one I could sense an accent. Well duh! Simon rapidly said, we are here in Puerto Rico of course we expect an accent. If we didn't want the accent we would have had the auditions in Omaha. Well said Simon.

Simon finally showed who's boss in the show. This girl in the Puerto Rico audition took her little brother and he actually stood by her while she auditioned. At 16 years of age I thought she did pretty good but Randy gave her a no, and Paula gave her a no, Kara said yes and Simon just said I am going to give you a second chance, and awarded her the gold ticket.

What? "Ugly Betty" is getting axed. Well now ABC denies it and says they are only rumors. Are you kiddin', Ugly Betty is like an as kicking show that is till watched by millions, I just hope that when they finally decide to shelf the show they plan carefully her transformation. In the meantime I am bummed because my DVR did not pick up last night's episode. Can anybody share what happened?

Randy Jackson's "America's Best Dance Crew" now on its third season continues to entertain the heck out of me. In a totally different league than "So you think you can dance" this show showcases group dancing in a way no other show has ever done. These kids take dancing and choreography to a whole different level. I am sure this show captures a younger audience but there are a few of us old timers that really enjoy it too. The competition is super tight and there just may be an all girl crew taking the top honors this year.

I am sure I'll be picking up some more shows along the way, when that happens I'll give you an update. Until then, good night.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

My Tube Is Not Too Active.

So, American Idol began and as usual I have been watching. Today should be the last day for the circus that are the auditions and next week the stressful Hollywood week begins. I get amused quite easy and so I enjoy the auditions even though they make no sence. We all know they only highlight a small portion of the good singers.

Knight Rider, to date I have not missed one single episode. It was said that the show is cheese and with bad acting. In case people have not noticed, the Mustang Cobra is giving us an Oscar performance... What? TV shows don't get Oscars,and cars don't get Oscars either. Bummer!

Ugly Betty, I missed all last season but picked it up again. The shows premise is the same and as far as I am concerned it is still very interesting and entertaining, too bad that it is getting the ax. I think this is the last season and it won't be renewed. Double bummer!

And my telenovela "Fuego en la Sangre" is in its last episodes. Definitely one of the best telenovelas I have watched. That's the beauty of Mexican soaps, they have a beginning, a middle, and eventually after a few months they end. Bomerito!

All my other shows are on hiatus and I will patiently continue to wait.

What is in your tube?

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Shock The World

Not much to tell, we were in need of a quiet weekend and that is pretty much what we had. Not that it will last since we already have a plan for next weekend. Yep, it will be Super Bowl party at my sons house and I am sure there will be plenty of food involved in that shindig.

So, I call my brother in law to find out what his Football Jersey inventory is like. He sells all sort of jerseys, baseball, basketball, football etc. He right away asked me, I'm sure you are interested in the Cardinals. Ummm he must be psychic. lol Anyway his inventory is not that great as even in California he has sold most of his Cardinals jerseys. Isn't it amazing how a team can be hated one minute and loved the next. As I said before, it doesn't matter to me if you are jumping on the band wagon, you are all welcome to make as much noise as possible to root for the Cardinals next Sunday.

The catch phrase of the moment for next week is "Shock the World". I am confident the Cards will do just that comes Sunday.

Well as the Cardinal fever continues, I am just going to savor it as much as possible. I am already happy they came this far after so many years of being at the bottom. It was about time their luck and performance changed and to wake up the Phoenix fans into believing that it is possible.

We are #1 -- Goooooooo Cards!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Joe Cool Award - Roll Call

Congratulations, you won a
"Joe Cool Award" 4 cool blogs.

Welcome to my five inductees. 01/22/2009
Betty, Crystal, Nikki, Chely, and Renee

I created this award because I read so many cool blogs out there in blog land and wanted to recognize them. At the same time any recipient of this award is briefly deputized and can award it to a blogger of his/her choice. Yes, I know it's been done before but hey I don't claim to be the innovator or the creator of the meme, just the creator of this new "Joe Cool Award" version.

Should you decide to play by accepting the award the rules are simple:

1. If, and only if, you get tagged, write a post telling why your nominated blog is a COOL BLOG. Then go ahead and give that blog the award.

2. Link to this post

So that people can easily find the exact origin of the meme and so that they can pick up their choice of three awards available. Then leave a comment on this post letting me know you received the award and who awarded it to you.

3. Optional: Proudly display the 'Joe Cool Award 4 Cool Blogs' on your sidebar with a link to Joe Cool's Blog.

Note: I reserve the right of awarding as many Joe Cool Awards as I please.

I hope you all decide to play along. Let's have fun.

A big Thank You to my daughter Nikki as she designed the three award avatars for the Joe Cool Award. Kudos to her, stop and visit her if you have a chance.

I will start by telling you about my first five COOL recipients.

To Michelle of My World... Through My Eyes and Michelle Duckworth Photography.
Michelle is not only my daughter but she has been a great supporter of Joe Cool's Blog and visits daily. Both her blogs are COOL. The first she talks about her family and displays a zillion images of her daily adventures. The second she shows us what a talented photographer she is. I urge you to visit both her blogs.

To Erin of EC's Margaritaville.
Any blogger that has been active over 4 years and has over 1000 posts is too COOL in my book. EC writes of just about everything. She definitely is an accomplished writer and is actually making a living of it.

To Wanda of Brushstrokes From The Heart.
Wanda is not only COOL but she is very inspirational. She has a huge following and reading a couple of her posts will show you why. She is an artist that paints the coolest water color paintings you'll ever see.

To Amy of Amy's Random Thoughts.
Amy is also a COOL and inspirational blogger, she has invited us in her adoption journey and asks us for our moral support. Soon she will be a COOL mom too.

To Lucky Lady of Lucky Lady.
If you love COOL cats then this is your blog. Lucky Lady will post her cats quite a lot. Hers too is a story of survival as she is a two time cancer survivor. She is way COOL and one of my oldest blog friends.

The following blogs are recepients of the
Joe Cool Award 4 Cool Blogs:

My World... Through My Eyes
Michelle Duckworth Photography
EC's Margaritaville
Brushstrokes From The Heart
Amy's Random Thoughts
Lucky Lady
Meditations of the Next Phase
My Name Is Crystal. This Is My Life Through Photographs
Nikki Darling
Chely's Memoirs
Squirrels's Nuthouse

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Wing Mountain Snow Day

OK it was a little bit past 5:00 a.m. when the alarm clock went off and mi chica woke me up for the first time, of course she knows I won't react until maybe the second snooze. Yep, that's me. Finally I got up and woke up everyone else. A quick shower, a cup of coffee and a loaded van. We were ready to hit the road, but not before dropping "chapalita" off with her ninos.

We did really good time and pretty soon we were stopping at the Prescott/Flagstaff crossroad. My daughter in law and two granddaughters caught up to us there. My daughter and her family left last and somehow were like half hour ahead from us. After a short pit stop we resumed our trip. I like a dummy got on the wrong lane and headed towards Prescott, I realized this right away so I threw a u-turn and got back on track, however my daughter in law didn't realized this and she kept driving towards Prescott thinking she was on the right path. When she finally realized her error she was a good 25 minutes behind us now. There for a while the kids were watching rocks, when I asked why the sudden interest in rocks, they said, "Didn't you see the sign that said watch for rocks next two miles" Not really, while the sign was there I just made this up. lol

So, when we got to Flagstaff we stopped at a gas station and that served as our meeting point. Half an hour later we were all on our way to the snow together. Having the instructions in advance on how to get there was a plus because we found Wing Mountain Recreational Park very easily.

We parked next to the snow so the kids started to explore and to play in the sleds we had bought a few minutes before. We all started on a little slope that didn't even look like a slope at all. In the meantime my in laws started setting up the TV in the back of an SUV. It took a lot of tweaking the antennas but they finally found the reception, it was sort of ironic because the reception was kinda snowy and we were in the snow.

After a while we graduated to the bigger slopes and that's where the fun and the accidents began. While everyone loved it, there were many wipe outs. Diego came back with a black eye, Jen and Nikki wiped out and landed on the gravel, Noe was totally knocked out by a runaway sled and got a bloody mouth, booty aches, scrapes, yep we had it all but in the end everybody wanted more. Junior decided to stick around the TV and he watched most of the game, they came calling out the score and of course the Cards were winning most of the game so the crowd went crazy.

At four we were ready to leave, the game was not over but that was fine we were still winning but wait... what? Philadelphia just scored and we are now down by one. Man that just sucks. Let's go.

Two miles down the road there is a small restaurant that sells the best coffee and hot chocolate, we went in and they were all watching the game. We were still down and I just couldn't take the pressure of watching my team lose so I went outside and babysat all the sleeping kids on three cars while everyone else stayed inside.
I said let's go and they said are you crazy? We won't leave until the game is over. With that they all marched inside the restaurant to watch the last 2 minutes 53 seconds left in the game. Of course to me that was an eternity, in the meantime mi chica called from home and told me we were winning and there was only 1 minute left. She said it's pretty safe to say we won, but me knowing my Cards I had to know the game was over.

Good coffee and hot chocolate and inside featuring the Cardinals. And this is where we found out we (The Cardinals) are going to the Super Bowl.

A few more minutes and everybody comes out running from the restaurant screaming and jumping and saying that the Cardinals won and that we are going to the Super Bowl. Ufff what a sight of relief, I knew my three and a half hour drive to Avondale would be a nice one.

Junior bought me a coffee and I started to drink it, everybody fell asleep and I was enjoying my coffee when I read a sign that said "Do not drink and drive". Man and I was really enjoying my coffee.

Part of the group, it was just too hard to get everyone together.

Monday, January 19, 2009

When You Wish Upon a Start

When you wish upon a star
Makes no difference who you are
Anything your heart desires
Will come to you

Like a bolt out of the blue
Fate steps in and sees you through
When you wish upon a star
Your dreams come true

For 21 amazing images

There is nothing I can say that you haven't heard, but tell me it isn't true that The Cardinals against all odds shocked all the skeptics and surprised the odd makers. Yes, most of us didn't even imagine this would happen but it is now a reality and The Cardinals are going to the Super Bowl. Unreal? Yes. Shocking? To a certain degree. Amazing? Absolutely. And proof that dreams do come true eventually.

There were thousands of "Cardinal Fans" in the streets yesterday and I had to wonder if they where did they come from? In Arizona there are lots of true Cardinal fans that are as happy as I am. But if all those fans just jumped on the band wagon, I only have one thing to say to them... WELCOME! And to the many fans that all they do is keep remembering those Cards that kept chocking up in that last minutes of the games, I say get over it and join us in supporting this magnificent team that for the first time in the franchise history will take us to The Super Bowl.

Coming back from our trip to the snow we drove by Westgate City Center and the place was completely packed, the game had ended at least three hours prior and I believe yesterday was even bigger than when we had the Super Bowl here.

So, I truly believe that when I go to a stadium or arena to watch my teams play they always lose, it's like a curse that I will have to get rid of before February so I can watch the Super Bowl in peace. There's a small restaurant at the entrance of Snow Bowl and we stopped for coffee and hot chocolate before hitting the road for Phoenix. Upon entering we found a few locals enjoying some bears while watching the game. The clock showed 2 minutes and 53 seconds left and the score was 25 to 24, I had to go out to the parking lot and gladly accepted to babysit three sets of sleeping kids in three cars, the rest of my posse would not leave until the game was over. Of course two minutes fifty three seconds felt like an eternity but a few minutes later my group comes out of the restaurant screaming WE WON! WE WON! and WE ARE GOING TO THE SUPER BOWL. I took a deep breath and joined them in the victory dance. The three hour drive back to Phoenix was more enjoyable after that.

Now we only have one more game to go, one more hurdle to pass, and one more team to conquer before we can call our Cards 2009 champions.


Thursday, January 15, 2009

Tidbit Post

Sorry Chely but you get no play by play narrative of Wednesday's American Idol, I was not impressed by what I saw. There was this girl that could go far, she kindda sang good, then this morning she is all over the Internet in bikini shots. No, she was not bikini girl from the Phoenix audition.

There was one guy that really surprised me. Story goes that his wife past away two weeks before his audition, now he is doing it as a memorial. At 28 years of age this would be his last shot at stardom. He really sang nice, I'll be looking for his during Hollywood week.

At this point I watch the auditions purely for the entertainment value. Some of the editing is pretty funny and I always catch myself laughing at some of the wacky candidates. We'll start seeing the better singers during the Hollywood week.

So, I took my walk during lunch as I usually do, the past week has been actually warm and by the time I finish I am feeling hot. It's hard to imagine how the people in the east coast are dealing with -30 and -40 temperatures. I believe they call them "skin freezing" weather. Brrrrrr, that is too radical, me I prefer the heat. Bring it on Phoenix.

So, our karaoke Friday night has been cancelled until further notice. Attendance was down as many people stay home more instead of going out. Too bad because after a couple of beers and some food our bill was normally between $15.00 and $!9.00 and that was a pretty good value for an entertaining time.

OK, gotta go now because I am getting sleepy and I really don't have much to say right now.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

American Idol 2009

And we are off, the first episode of American Idol auditions was last night. What's cool is that of all places they kicked it off here in my home town of Phoenix, Arizona. Now I know that the mass auditions were in Glendale at Gateway City Center where The Coyotes arena and the Cardinals stadium call it home but what they showed on TV didn't match. I think they must have been somewhere in Scottsdale or similar.

First, I wasn't sure if I was going to like having an additional judge. You know what? It didn't make a difference and it actually added balance to the sorting process, and she is not bad looking either. Second, they had a good balance of goofy auditions and the not so goofy. I have a feeling that the better singers, the ones with a real chance didn't get any air time, they save them for Hollywood week. Third, I noticed a new approach to the segment presentations, the editing was better than in previous seasons.

Last season we had Carly Smithson, she was a pretty good singer but for the life of me I just could not get past her tattoos. An Emily Hughes audition and was given a golden ticket to Hollywood. This girl has double the amount of tattoos. Me, I just won't be able to go pass her tattoos either, I say she'll be gone. As much as AI wants to break barriers the winners go on to be role models for our young viewers.

This year's version of Carly. Going to Hollywood but I ask why? But that's just me, I am sure there are millions that will love her.

Guys were weak, at least the ones they highlighted, and out of the whole 2-hour show I really only liked two people, both girls. Again, they probably have some hopefuls hiding under their sleeves and we won't see them until they get to Hollywood, but for now I'll say Arianna Afsar whom by the way reminded me of Mandy Moore, and Stevie Wright whom reminded me of Liv Tyler, both of them sounded really nice and looked like they can be made over very easily.

This is Arianna Afsar, she really did sing good, she is a possitive role model for our youth and is involved in a lot of social activities. And she kept reminding me of Mandy Moore one of my favorite your actresses.

Stevie Wright, another likeable candidate. She really did good and I hope she goes far. Doesn't she look like Liv Tyler?

So, this girl that could actually sing decided it would be to her advantage if she showed up in a bikini to the audition. I mean why not people do show up in costume and usually can't sing, but they know they may get their 5-minutes of fame if picked to be in the episode. Katrina Darrell can actually sing and she did advance to Hollywood week but as far as Simon and Randy were concerned that was secondary. Realistically she'll be cut I am almost sure but it was fun seeing her argue with Paula and Kara (notice I call her Kara as we are on a first name basis already. He, he, he). Did she really think making out with Ryan by the pool will improve her chances? It will be interesting to see how far they take her.

Simon and Randy gave her the gold ticket even before she audition. lol

Did anybody watch the show? Does anybody care anymore? Or am I the only fool left on earth that actually sits there for one or two hours watching? Let me know.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Go Cards!


Even though I am not a die hard football fan I have been a true Cardinal fan since we moved to Phoenix back in 1990. Basically I adopted every local team since in Los Angeles I never did like or follow the local teams. This is why I am extremely happy that this season my team has come this far.

Year after year the cards played games that were less than stellar. Nobody really had big expectations and their fan base was for the most part pretty thin. Although I know there were more like me that rooted for them no matter what. To me it was like as long as they beat the Raiders (Sorry mijo)and the Cowboys they had a good season. So this year when they started winning more than they were losing I knew it was going to be a special season for them. Just to be where they are right now has made them heroes in the eyes of many fans.

The had a huge reception at the airport as they came back from their game last week, and now us die hard Cardinal fans are thinking that anything can happen. I can only imagine, just one more win and guess where will be, that's right baby! At this point in time we can all think that there is a very good chance that we could be in the Superbowl... Errr,let me say this again --SUPERBOWL-- A dream, maybe! But this wan could very well become a reality.

So for now, congrats, kudos, thumbs up, 5 stars, CONGRATULATIONS etc. etc. etc. and GO CARDS!

Image borrowed from the internet.

Friday, January 09, 2009


I've been walking during my lunch hour since the beginning of December. One of the many Christmas presents I received from work was an iPod Shuffle. I brought it home and had my daughter load it with my favorite music. I already wrote the other day about me singing like a mad man at the top of my lungs while walking, but what the heck when the song is good you just have to sing along regardless.

For one thing while listening to the music the walk seems to go faster, I put the iPod in the shuffle mode and just wait to see what's next. About 95% of the music in it is Country Music, I have a little bit of everything else but I definitely Country Music dominates.

So while I walk my body gets a good doze of exercise and listening to the music gets me ready for karaoke Friday. When I listen to music on the radio I never know what a song is about. I usually like a song based on the tempo and the style of music. Since I'm a crooner I prefer ballads, ballads, and more ballads. Then if I like the song enough I youtube it and then read the lyrics. In most cases that is the point in time when I finally know what the song is about. I always have to tell myself, so that's what this song is about.

An iPod requires of earbuds to listen to the music. Everyone knows that wearing headsets or earbuds blocks a big percentage of what's around you (sound wise) and the music is pretty much isolated in your ears, and immediately processed by your brain.

Well, today a song started playing and I almost dismissed it but decided to liten to it, the song started playing and I knew that I had heard this song many times before, I kept listening to it and my mind immediately thought "So, this is what the song is about", I really liked the first verse, then the second verse choked me up a bit, by the end of the song some tears actually came out. What a wimp, but then again I cry at sad movies so why not at sad songs.

When it finished I had to re-play it and again I got all choked up. Needless to say it will now be a favorite of mine. The song made me realize at how lucky I am to have mi chica by my side always. Many people are not quite as lucky as I am.

Here is the song, maybe I am a wimp or maybe the song is a good song. Give it a listen and then let me know what you think.

Blake Shelton


She left without leavin' a number
Said she needed to clear her mind
He figured she'd gone back to Austin
'Cause she talked about it all the time
It was almost a year before she called him up
Three rings and an answering machine is what she got

If you're callin' 'bout the car I sold it
If this is Tuesday night I'm bowling
If you've got somethin' to sell, you're wastin' your time, I'm not
If it's anybody else, wait for the tone,
You know what to do
And P.S. if this is Austin, I still love you

The telephone fell to the counter
She heard but she couldn't believe
What kind of man would hang on that long
What kind of love that must be
She waited three days, and then she tried again
She didn't know what she'd say,
But she heard three rings and then

If it's Friday night I'm at the ballgame
And first thing Saturday, if it don't rain
I'm headed out to the lake
And I'll be gone, all weekend long
But I'll call you back when I get home
On Sunday afternoon
And P.S. If this is Austin, I still love you

Well, this time she left her number
But not another word
Then she waited by the phone on Sunday evenin'
And this is what he heard

If you're callin' 'bout my heart
It's still yours
I should've listened to it a little more
Then it wouldn't have taken me so long to know where I belong
And by the way, boy, this is no machine you're talkin' to
Can't you tell, this is Austin, and I still love you

I still love you

p.s. If this is mi chica I'll always love you!

Our House

A house, in the middle of the street.

I was 14 years old when my parents moved us into this house. The apartment we lived in was too small, it only had two small bedrooms and there were now seven of us (small is relative, in Mexico we all shared one bedroom). So, when my parents spotted this house for rent they had to inquire. At the time the house was white with a brown roof, it had a charming porch, something new houses don't have anymore, and it was a two story house, how cool was that?

Inside it had a small foyer then to the left a straight stair case going up to the second floor and ending directly where our only bathroom was. To the right was the living room, followed by the formal dining room and lastly there was small bedroom. Past the foyer was a hall that lead to the kitchen.

The upstairs was simple, it had three very big bedrooms and one bathroom, that was it. The first two bedrooms were divided by a shared long closet, and the last one had it's own closet and was slightly bigger than the other two bedrooms.

The house looked innocent enough but if you happened to be the only one in it say at around when it was dark it was actually a bit creepy. Because it was all wood, including the floors it made all sort of weird noises when the sun sat down, as the wood compressed with the change in temperature. We always got that haunted house gut feeling if you know what I mean. However, the house was hardly ever empty, with so many of us living there there was always noise and action going on.

The landlord offer it to my parents and my mom knew it would be a great buy, so this house became the first house my parents ever owned. Bought it for $17,000 and sold it seven years later for $75,000. This was one of the best investments they made, although with my mom's brains for business there were more. Consider this, my mom did not go to school ever, where she came from they only offered as far as the third grade and it was mostly reserved for the boys.

Last year we went to Los Angeles for a weekend and we drove by the old neighborhood. We went past the house and captured some images of it. As my sister would say, the house is no longer white, it is now a "gay pink", don't ask because I don't know where she come out with that color but it made us laugh.

We all have nothing but good memories of that house, the house that for the first time made us feel that we were important as we felt my then middle age parents had finally achieved something important.

Funny though because for them that was just the beginning.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Our Pot

My dear friends Wanda and Chris often post about plants and flowers. Just today Wanda captured some images of a cactus and one of the leafs was perfectly shaped as a heart. I am almost sure that Wanda won't mind me "borrowing" her images so I can show it to you here. Well, I take that as a good omen. To start the year in a positive note and a loving outlook towards life and towards the future. God knows we need to remain positive. At the same time the images also sparked a conversation of how good cactus or as we call them "Nopalitos" or "Nopales" taste. Both mi chica and my mom make a really good nopalito salad that with El Perico tostadas can make a meal in itself. But that is entirely another story. Maybe one day I'll convince mi chica to give me a recipe and I'll post it here.

So that brings me to my current tale. Mi chica and I have been married for over 27 years now, I have on occasion been accused of being a rat pack. I hate to throw things away and I have many items in possession that have been with me for a long time, I just can't seem to part ways with some of them.

As newly weds when we used to live in Lincoln Heights in Los Angeles we would drive on San Fernando road towards Glendale and there was a place that sold nothing but pots. Being newly weds we thought we were going to do all these things, you know how many dreams go through your head when you are young, so one day we decided to stop and buy a couple pots so we could plant some flowers.

We bought them took them home and they sat there looking lonely and waiting for them to be used. Shortly after we bought them we moved to my parent's house and the pots came with us. A lot of our possessions were stored in the garage as we only had a room at the house and space was scarce. The pots just sat there looking lonely and waiting for a little plant to go into them.

A little bit over a year later we were able to go into our first house. We moved, made it livable, we tried to decorate it and again we had big dreams for the house and our lives. But the realization that now we had a mortgage, bills, credit card payments, and yes even kids put some of our dreams and things aside. Our pots once again got moved to a corner by the patio fence and just sat there looking lonely and patiently waiting for a plant to make it's home in it.

In the year 1990 we decided to say goodbye to Los Angeles and we moved to Phoenix, Arizona. We sold the house, packed our belongings rented a truck and headed east. In April of 1990 we were residents of Phoenix but it wasn't until three weeks later that we moved into our new home.

We were now the proud owners of a 2800 square foot home, a huge change from are 1200 square foot house in Hacienda Heights. This house had four bedrooms, three restrooms, three living rooms, and a swimming pool. Our back yard was big and we had no problem finding a piece of space to put our pot. Yes, during our move one of our pots broke and I had to throw it away, nine years after we bought it. Our remaining pot was left there against the fence in the backyard withstanding the Arizona heat in the summer and the cold winters too. It sat there looking lonely and ready to have something planted in it.

In the year 2000 we made the move from Phoenix to Avondale, we went from an old house to a brand new never lived in house. We were the first proud owners and again had big dreams for it. Our house has gone from looking like a model home to being a bit trashed by my lovely grand kids. We have made some home improvements to it and the kids destroy them, then we improve it again. It's a never ending game that has no end in sight.

During all this time our pot has been quietly siting by the fence in the patio, looking lonely and waiting to be used.

We are now starting a brand new year. It is now 2009, a little over 27 years since mi chica and I said "I do" and bought the pot.

It is my pleasure and honor to introduce to you my family, blog family, and friends our pot. Yes, two states, 5 houses, and 27 years later Mike our gardener brought a little plant and planted it in the pot. It no longer sits by the corner against the fence but it is now in the center of our patio and he even run a line so that the pot gets water automatically when the sprinkler system goes on.

No, I hate throwing my things away, and I am glad our little pot has made it with us all these years. Now I just have to call Mike and ask him what kind of plant calls our pot home. I was so excited when he showed it to me that I didn't ask him.

No longer against a fence or abandoned in a patio corner. Our pot and new little plant sit in the center of our patio.

If I had to find a moral to this story it would be a simple one. Patience is a virtue.

Sunday, January 04, 2009


I am really looking forward to Monday. It will be the first day of work and after almost five days at home and great as they were I am ready to start the work year. I am going in with the "What can I do to make things better" mentality, God willing pretty soon I'll have a special interest in the company as I will be a small partner in it, I have always treated it like my own so can you imagine now.

It should be a good day since we have been holding lots of orders as the schools were all in their Christmas break but everyone comes back tomorrow. Also because we close the company between Christmas and New Year for inventory and cleanup all the trucking companies have been holding deliveries until tomorrow.

I am really hoping for a busy day and then I'm praying that the days that follow get even busier. I know that is every American worker's dream too.

So, I don't normally have resolutions but this year I am coming up with some and I hope to follow through with them. So, here they are in no particular order.

1. Have my car fixed so that I can be proud of it again.

2. Get my Harley going too. I miss the heck out of it and I'm not getting any younger.

3. Exercise more and get in shape.

4. Clean and organize the garage so that we can actually park our cars inside.

5. Tackle some home improvements.

6. Keep up with my "Joe Cool's Market Place" and share it not only with my family but with my blog family too.

7. I bow to continue both my blogs going at least for another year, as long as I have at least one reader I'm cool.

8. Keep walking during my lunch hour at least until the heat comes again and it becomes brutal to be outside.

9. Get a physical check up.

10. Just be COOL.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Coyotes Game

Mi chica took Friday off and since I was off too we decided to spend the whole day out. It should not come as any surprise that our grandson Diego tagged along all day long. We started the day with a Mexican breakfast in one of our favorite Mexican restaurants in Old Avondale. Of course Mr. Diego had to pose in the mechanical donkey staged right outside the restaurant.

With full stomachs we took on the next task, shopping. We started by going to Wally World better know as Wal-Mart, then on to COX Communications (We got as far to the door then we realized that we would lose half our day waiting so we left), then on to Costco and finally home. All in all a very productive morning.

Mi chica invited me to go with her to get her nails done, I asked her where was she going and after she told me I politely declined her invitation. An hour and and a half later she came back. Turns out at the last minute she went to a different place and she went to the one I like where I could have sat on one of those massage chairs for as long as I was waiting for her. That'll teach me to say no again.

After a busy morning a nap was in order as we needed to be rested for the Coyotes game. She got six free tickets to the game and so along with my daughter Nikki, her husband, their son "Ducky" and our grandson Diego we went to enjoy the game.

As luck would have it, we enjoyed a winning game. Hockey is such a fast paced game that for sure gets the fans going when the home team scores. From howling noises to dancing rituals Phoenix Coyotes fans are a great bunch. The best part for me was to see "Ducky" and Diego enjoy the game so much. Specially when Howler the mascot came real close to them and even wave at them.

And now introducing with the long ears and tail and a very furry skin number 96 Howler. Auuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu!

Here's Howler waving to us.

Far from being a sell out game but attendance was good. There were plenty of us there to make some noise.

As we don't really know what's in store for us in the up coming months and with the economy forecasters being realistically pessimist, I want to make sure that my money stays in our neighborhood. So any chance we get to go out and do some shopping, I will keep it in the hood. The last thing we need is to see our stores keep closing. As it is we now have two voids, one where Lines 'N' Things used to be, and the other for Circuit City. I will hate to see top brand or good name stores go out but it seems that in 2009 it will be likely that will continue to happen.

As we left the game I was happy to see that Westgate City Center was very busy. This is a great place to visit if you ever make it to Phoenix. Westgate is in Glendale, Arizona and is home to the Cardinals stadium and Coyotes arena. You'll find a plethora of awesome restaurants and shops there. Before going to our car we took a couple of pics there.

(Bellow) "Ducky" and Nikki enjoying the game but quickly striking a pose for this shot.

Here are some scenes from Westgate City Center. This last image was captured by Diego, our 5-year old grandson. As we posed he actually moved us and told us where and how to stand for his shot. At five he is a sesoned pro at taking pictures.

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Happy New Year!

OK, close your eyes and tell me wasn't it just yesterday when people were in a frenzy because the world as we knew it would be no more. Remember the long lines at the water marts, the supermarkets could not stock water fast enough and can food was selling faster than normal. Yes, Y2K would be here and no computer in the world was going to work properly. Complete TV shows were dedicated to this one subject and then when the year 2000 finally rode in it was just another day in paradise. Everything was the same, the computers did work, there was no need for all that extra water people bought and they now had can food to last them a while. Wow, I remember that as if it happened yesterday and now here we are beginning of Y2K + 9, almost a decade away from that memorable date.

While for many the year 2008 will go in history as their worse year we are fortunate enough to consider it a good year. Nothing extraordinary happened but then again nothing bad or ugly happened either and that in itself is great news.

We were invited to a couple of parties but as every year we decided to spend it with family. Again, just a few of us got together, we went to my sister's house and there we were joined by my other sister and her family, my daughter whom had said she would spend the New Year home with her family also made an appearance. My father in law and his wife, and my sister in law's husband also joined the celebration. It was a very intimate but fun gathering.

The best part was the food. OMG, the girls outdid themselves with the Mexican dishes, we had "tacos de lengua" and "barbacoa", mi chica once again cooked the tastier "frijoles puercos". My nieces took care of the desserts, I made a salsa, and we had wine and beer to help us wash it all down while at the same time to get in the mood.

The guys were out in the patio as the weather wasn't really too cold, they had the fire pit going so it was all good, as long as the beer kept flowing they were just fine. My sisters and I along with my mom and in laws stayed inside where we plugged in the karaoke machine and waited for the new year with music in our hears and bad notes from our mouths, lol but again, I did not hear anybody complain and that too was all good.

We waited until past one to leave, we just don't like to chance the stray bullets that many STUPID PEOPLE shoot into the air to receive the new year. Everything was calmed by the time we left for home. Our designated driver a.k.a. mi chica took our friend/brother in law to his house and then we went home too.

All in all a great time was had by all, my mom invited us to go to her house the next day for "pozole". What a way to start the new year. I hope it continues to be a prosperous one.

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