Honor Your Family’s Journey To America On July Fourth! #ThisIsWholesome @HoneyMaidSnacks #Paid

*This is part of a sponsored campaign with Being Latino and Honey Maid. However, all opinions expressed are my own.     My ancestors came to this country in search of a better life and new opportunities for their children and grandchildren.  On my father's side of the family, my grandparents migrated from Spain to Venezuela to find work and save money.  When they realized that they would have more employment opportunities here in the United States, they packed up all of their belongings and headed to "America."     My grandmother was a stay at home mom while my grandfather worked for the telephone company in order to support their two children.  Abuelo, or Grandpa, has always told me that coming to this country was the best thing that he and my grandmother could have done for our family.  They have always been very proud of both of their grandchildren, their five grandchildren and their eight great-grandchildren and have stressed the importance of getting an education and of working … [Read more...]

Take An Active Role In Educating Your Teen Driver! #GetThereSafe @Allstate #DiMe #Ad

*I wrote this post as part of my participation in a blog tour for DiMe Media on behalf of the Allstate Foundation and received compensation to thank me for taking the time to participate. However, all opinions expressed are my own.     It is never too early to take an active role in educating your tween or teen driver about how being a responsible driver can help to save lives.  Studies show that parents are the number one influence on their children regarding their driving skills.  The safe, or unsafe, driving habits that they observe you engaging in have a direct correlation on the kind of driver that they will be when they get behind the wheel.  The Allstate Foundation is celebrating its 10th year of arming families with the resources necessary to create an ongoing conversation about safe driving that begins before tweens or teens even get in a car to drive for the first time.     Recently, I have started having conversations about safe driving with my twelve year-old son … [Read more...]

What Is The Definition Of A Good Father? @minutemaid_us #DoinGood #DiMe #Sweeps #Ad

*DISCLAIMER: This is part of a sponsored collaboration with Minute Maid and DiMe Media.  Minute Maid will provide this prize. Minute Maid is not a sponsor, administrator or connected in any other way with the contest – and all opinions are my own.     Father's Day is right around the corner and I have found myself reflecting a lot on the qualities that define what a good father is.  If you think about it, being a dad is not an easy job.  It involves always being in mom's shadow and the truth is that fathers also play an integral role in the nurturing and development of their children.  Many fathers question whether they are doing a good job or not and, if you asked their children, they would probably say that they have the best fathers in the whole world!     I've been very fortunate in my life to be able to witness firsthand some of the best fathers in the world with the men in my own family.  Watching them over the years has allowed me see that any doubts that they might have … [Read more...]

How Does Your Familia Inspire You? #McFarlandUSA #MiFamilia #Giveaway #Ad

*This is part of a sponsored campaign with DiMe Media and Buena Vista Home Entertainment. However, all opinions expressed are my own.     My familia, or family, is at the center of everything that I do every single day.  Their love and support inspires me to sacrifice everything that I can in order to guarantee that they have the best opportunities that life has to offer.  This foundation was laid decades ago by my grandparents and great-grandparents who threw caution to the wind and traveled to distant lands so that their descendants could benefit from some of the things that they did not have access to such as education and democracy.     On my father's side, my paternal grandparents migrated to Venezuela from Spain to have access to gainful employment so they could provide for their two children, my Dad and my Aunt.  Although it was difficult to make the transition to a new country, away from all their family and friends, they sacrificed and saved all their money in order to … [Read more...]

Celebrate Expressions Of Love With Your Children! #SoMuchMore @Johnsonsbaby #Ad

*This is a compensated campaign in collaboration with JOHNSON’S® Baby and Latina Bloggers Connect. All opinions are 100% mine.     This past weekend was Mother's Day and most moms spent the day being pampered and doted upon by their significant others and their kids.  The truth is that every single day is an opportunity to celebrate motherhood and to share expressions of love from your children.  From the moment that they were babies, I have enjoyed every moment with my sons and know that every touch, hug, and smile that we have shared has nourished all of us emotionally.     As infants, I made sure that I bonded with them through daily rituals that allowed us to spend time together and to make wonderful memories through the power of touch.  One of these routines included bath time every evening which was spent as a family when my husband and I bathed each son before going to sleep.  Studies show that, in the first three years of life, interaction with moms and dads can help to … [Read more...]

My Sons And I Are #Inseparable @CocaCola #DiMe #Ad

*This is part of a sponsored collaboration with Coca-Cola and DiMe Media and all opinions are my own.     When my husband and I got married in 1999, we immediately discussed that we were planning on having children.  We both had so many things in common when it came to parenting and we agreed on all the important issues that arise when two people are raising kids together.  Unfortunately, we were unable to get pregnant right away and, year after year for four years, we were disappointed that it just wasn't happening for us.     Suddenly, in late 2002, we got the news that we had been eagerly awaiting for, we were expecting and I was due to give birth to our child in June of 2003.  During the entire pregnancy, we planned for everything!  Every afternoon, we would both come home with new clothes for the baby which soon began to fill the closet in the nursery.  There was so much planning for the arrival of our new blessing that we were actually painting the nursery in sky blue the … [Read more...]

Vi and Va Helps Latina Girls Embrace Their Heritage! #ViandVa @ViandVa #Giveaway #Ad

    When I was a little girl, I loved playing with dolls.  I can still remember spending hours role-playing with them and using my imagination to act out scenarios and to dress and accessorize them.  This time was magical for me because it was almost like I created my own little world that included my beautiful dolls and myself.  The only problem was that, back then, there were not many dolls who embodied or represented Latinas or Latin culture.     Although I don't have daughters, I teach young Latinas and have been doing so for over fifteen years.  During this time, I have seen how important it is for young girls to have images in the media, and around them, that they can relate to culturally and emotionally.  Vi and Va has recently launched a fashion doll line that is inspired by Latino cultures.  It consists of four main characters who are not just friends, they are also family!  This is an added bonus for me because Latino culture has always revolved around the importance of … [Read more...]

Tips For Child Safety In The Laundry Room! #ArribaYLejos @Tide @GainLatino #Ad

    I have always been a firm believer in teaching children how to be self-sufficient.  Part of imparting that independence unto kids includes modeling how to do certain chores like the laundry for them from an early age.  Along with learning how to wash and dry their own clothes, it's important to show them how to safely and responsibly use and store laundry pods and other cleaning products or detergents.     This year, I started teaching my eleven year old son how to wash his school uniforms since both of my boys attend private school.  Although he is very mature and responsible, his nine year old brother is a little more curious so I have to make sure that they both learned the ins and outs of laundry room safety.  Since my younger son watches his brother all the time, I had concerns about him being with his brother, while he is washing the uniforms, and improperly handling the laundry pacs. Here are my tips for child safety in the laundry room: Even older children need to … [Read more...]

Ensure Your Family Has Breakfast Every Morning! #GalletitasHBOats @HBOats @HBOatsLatino #Ad

*This is part of a sponsored campaign with Latina Mom Bloggers and Honey Bunches of Oats. However, all opinions expressed are my own.     It's no secret that I am a very busy mom.  Aside from teaching full-time as a middle school teacher in New York City, I also run a successful blog and have two school-aged children who are involved in a plethora of extracurricular activities.  Most mornings we are all rushing out of the house to get to work and school and it is difficult to make sure we always have a healthy breakfast. Some of the ways that I try to ensure that my boys enjoy a hearty breakfast are: Waking them up a little earlier so they have enough time to eat breakfast after they have gotten dressed. Sign them up for the free breakfast program at their school so they can eat there if we are running late and they don't get to eat breakfast at home. Setting aside their breakfast the night before so they are not wasting time looking for what to eat in the morning.     As … [Read more...]

Encourage Happy And Healthy Development During Bath Time! #SoMuchMore @Johnsonsbaby #Partner

*This is a compensated campaign in collaboration with JOHNSON'S® and Latina Bloggers Connect. All opinions are 100% mine.     As a new mom, I learned right away the importance of encouraging happy and healthy development during bath time with my babies. It became immediately apparent to me that bath time was an important part of ensuring that my babies had a restful sleep and I quickly established a bedtime routine that we followed religiously every night.     In the evening, my husband and I would bathe our son with JOHNSON'S® baby HEAD-TO-TOE® wash. Not only did we love its scent but we also knew that it was gentle enough for our son's delicate new skin. Smell in general can evoke powerful emotions, and a clean, fresh, after-bath smell appears to be no exception for parents in the US, especially Hispanic parents. Parents around the world spend 10 hours per month on average bathing their babies and 90% of Hispanic parents consider this a special time to bond with their … [Read more...]