Friday Song 1-13-17

Hi everyone and happy Friday! It’s Friday the 13th but I don’t believe in bad luck! 🙂 I hope it’s a three-day weekend for you because of the Martin Luther King holiday on Monday. If you’ve been following my blog for awhile, you might remember me blogging about the legendary Sir Elton John. In case you missed the posts, you can check them out here and here. I blogged about his performance on “Carpool Karaoke” and the time I got very close to interviewing him back in 2007. I was a freelance writer at a local newspaper for years. Over the years, I had the opportunity to interview  bands and celebrities. I regret missing his concert in 2007 but…I’m hoping I get the opportunity to see him perform on March 23. Sir Elton John will bring his ‘Behind the Piano’ tour to El Paso and nearby Albuquerque the day before! Most of the tickets are already sold but I haven’t lost hope yet! Today I’m including one of my favorite Sir Elton John songs, “Benny and the Jets.” I’ve included it in the blog before but it wasn’t live the last time. Do you have any favorite Sir Elton John songs? Feel free to leave them in the comments section. Have a great weekend everyone and I’ll see you soon!    

      

The Keys by DJ Khaled

wp-1484153402471.jpg

Hi everyone! I recently read DJ Khaled’s “The Keys” and I couldn’t put it down! It usually takes me months to finish a book but “The Keys” was an exception. Because of the book’s positivity, I finished the 213-page turner in four days! The keys refer to tips for success. Anyone can use them to improve their lives. If you want to start the year off right, this is a perfect read. DJ Khaled talks about his success and failures in the music industry. Not only does he tell you his stories but others he’s known for years also speak highly of him. Some of those people include Jay-Z, Sean “Diddy” Combs, Fat Joe, Arianna Huffington and several other successful well-knowns. I actually felt like I was chatting with DJ Khaled at his Miami mansion near his angels with a tasty drink in hand. DJ Khaled refers to his outside home plants as his angels. It’s almost as if he has his own language. 

One of DJ Khaled’s main keys is to stay away from “they” at all times. “They” are your enemies a.k.a. people who pretend to like you but are out to get you. In other words, “they” are people who want to see you fail in life. DJ Khaled also gives advice on how to make more money in your career and/or business. He refers to it as securing the bag. DJ Khaled feels like you’ll make the most money if you’re following your true passion in life rather than chasing money. Some other main keys he includes are: Don’t ever play yourself, Respect the code, Glorify your success, Don’t deny the heat, Keep two rooms cooking at the same time and Win, win, win no matter what. He refers to himself and other successful people as special cloth. DJ Khaled is the founder of We the Best Music Group. He’s also known as the king of Snapchat because he has around six million followers. Back in October, he snapchatted his son’s birth.

Photo from AMP

#RomanticTuesday 1-10-17

wp-1484021036643.jpg

Hi everyone! Happy Tuesday and I hope everything is going well for you! I usually feature a favorite song on Romantic Tuesday but I decided to change it up. Today’s Romantic Tuesday post is about one of my all-time favorite romantic movies and books, Nicolas Sparks’ “The Notebook.” Although I have several favorite Nicolas Sparks books and movies, my favorite out of all of them is “The Notebook.” The book and movie are a timeless and classic love story. If you haven’t seen or read it, I’ll tell you a little bit about it. I don’t want to spoil the entire book or movie so I won’t tell you everything that happens. 

The story initially takes place in a nursing home. An elderly married couple lives there together. Despite his wife’s dementia and mood swings, the elderly man patiently tells his wife their beautiful love story many times. After going out on a few dates, the couple falls in love as teenagers. Despite Allie’s family not liking her boyfriend Noah, she still falls in love with him. Sometimes you just can’t help who you love, even at a young age! The couple eventually breaks up after a fight as teenagers. Despite their argument and breakup, Noah write letters to Allie for a year. He eventually give ups after not hearing from her. Since Allie’s mother doesn’t like Noah, she takes the letters and hides them from Allie for years. Allie becomes a nurse during World War II. She meets Lon Anderson, an injured officer who she nurses back to health. Lon proposes marriage and Allie says yes until she finds her long lost love, Noah. Just as he promised when they were teenagers, Noah remodels and buys a rundown house they spent time in. After many years of not being together, the couple almost immediately rekindles their love for each other.

wp-1484021482548.jpg

Monday night I read on Entertainment Weekly (EW) that “The Notebook” television series is currently in the works on the CW Network. I can’t believe I didn’t know about this project sooner! The EW story was released on Aug. 11, 2015! According to EW, “This series will follow the romantic journey of the two beloved central characters Noah and Allie, at the outset of their blossoming relationship as they build their lives and their future together against the backdrop of the racial politics, economic inequities, and social mores of post-World War II of the late 1940’s in North Carolina.” If a show is currently in the works, I don’t see why a second book or movie can’t be created. Then again, some masterpieces are only meant to be created once. What do you think about the TV show in the works? How about a second Notebook movie and/or book? What are some of your favorite romantic books and/or movies and why?

wp-1484021932026.jpg      

Photos from Seventeen, Amazon and AMP

U.S. Blogging Event Details, Poll

The U.S. Blogging event is set for Sat. Aug. 26, 2017 in Chicago. Please let us know if you plan on attending so that we can make room for you. After this month-long poll, the exact location will be determined based on how many would like to attend. Please spread the word here and/or on social media.

A Joyful Process

The U.S. Blogging Event committee would like to thank those of you who voted for a location for this meeting of bloggers. If you are unaware, Chicago, Illinois was the city that was chosen to hold the inaugural event. It will be similar to the Bloggers Bash that has been held in London for a couple years.

Please note that the date of this event has been changed to Saturday, August 26, 2017; it’s a week earlier than the September 2, 2017 date that was previously set. At this time, we need as many bloggers as possible to let the committee know if you would like to attend. We need a firm number on attendance in order to find a place to hold the event. The committee has several places in mind, but want to get an idea of how many people will attend before booking one of those places.

To find…

View original post 115 more words

Happy Three Kings Day/ Día de los Reyes

947017_1111285522229372_7978595752720543074_n.jpg

Hi everyone and Happy Friday! Today’s post is a repost from last year’s Three Kings Day (Día de los Reyes/Día de los Reyes Magos/Epiphany Day) here. The holiday takes place on Jan. 6. I plan on buying a rosca for my family later on today. Have a great day/weekend, everyone! I’ll see you soon! 

***

Hi everyone! I hope your Wednesday went well! Today is Three Kings Day or Día de los Reyes. The holiday is also known as Epiphany Day. The day commemorates  when the three kings/wise men traveled to visit baby Jesus after his birth. The kings/wise men took gifts to Baby Jesus. Some Hispanic/Latino families celebrate today. They’re opening gifts and having parties. Some open their gifts on January 6th instead of December 25. Some Latino families believe the Three Kings or Baby Jesus brings them gifts. They don’t believe in Santa Claus.

A huge part of the Three Kings Day celebration/tradition is eating rosca. A rosca is an oval-shaped sweet bread/pastry that represents a king’s crown. The rosca includes dried fruit, maraschino cherries and pecans with drizzles of frosting on top of it. This represents jewels on the crown. In my opinion, it kind of tastes like a cinnamon roll without the gooey white frosting on top of it. The bread contains one or two (sometimes more) baby Jesus figurines inside of it. Those who cut into the rosca and find a baby Jesus are expected to host a dinner party on February 2 or Candlemas Day (Día de las Candelarias). The host typically serves tamales, atole (thick hot chocolate) or pozole (a spicy soup with hominy. There are variations to this recipe). Jesus was presented at the Temple on Feb.2. Candlemas Day also celebrates the early life of Jesus.

Even though El Paso is so close to Mexico, I don’t think it’s celebrated here that much. My family doesn’t observe the holiday. Our Christmas decorations are put away on or a couple of days after Three Kings Day. Christmas Day is always celebrated with my family on December 25. Although we believe in the three kings, we believe Santa Claus brings us gifts. A couple of my work colleagues brought in a rosca for everyone this morning. This was the extent of me celebrating Three Kings Day. I didn’t get a baby Jesus when I cut my slice of rosca. Larger cities like New York City host a Three Kings Day parade.

Photo taken by a fellow co-worker.

#RomanticTuesday 1-3-17

Happy New Year everyone! I hope 2017 has been good to you so far! 🙂 It’s been good to me so far! The other day I made a list of what I want to accomplish this year and by when. I have lots of plans for this blog and writing. I can’t believe next month will be two years since I’ve been blogging! I’ve enjoyed the experience so much! Anyway… Since today is my grandma’s birthday, I decided to go with her favorite song by her favorite singer of all-time…”Love Me Tender” by Elvis Presley. It’s safe to say my grandma is obsessed with him and his music! Throughout the years, she’s enjoyed buying lots of Elvis memorabilia. Her house is filled with Elvis blankets, cups, Christmas ornaments, playing cards, movies and I forget what else!

“Love Me Tender” was recorded in 1956. It was a number one hit on the Billboard Music charts. According to Wikipedia, the song is adapted from a Civil War ballad called “Aura Lee.” The song has been featured on several movies like “Die Hard 2,” “Honeymoon in Vegas,” “The Princess Diaries 2,” etc. The song has also been covered by several artists throughout the years. I included a few I like, along with the original one with the lyrics. Which one do you prefer? Have a great day everyone and I’ll see you soon! 🙂

      

Happy New Years Eve!

wp-1483197025245.jpg

Hi everyone! I’m counting the hours down for 2017 to arrive! As of right now, it’s 12 hours away. Do you have any plans for tonight? It’s been SO long since I’ve gone out on New Years Eve! I’m really excited about going out tonight. I can’t drink that much because a lot of cops will be out. If I remember correctly, it’s supposedly a $10,000 fine for being caught drinking and driving here! Yeah, no thank you!

Since I was a kid, my New Years Eve tradition is eating 12 grapes at the stroke of midnight. You can also make some wishes for the new year. The 12 grapes (green are best according to National Public Radio) are said to bring prosperity for the new year. The tradition comes from Spain. Mexico and various Latin American countries also participate. NPR also suggests wearing red underwear on New Years Eve as a good luck charm for the upcoming year. You can check out the story here. Why grapes? The Black Label says grape growers wanted to sell large quantities of grapes in the 1800’s. It’s also said the wealthy in Madrid wanted to copy the French on the last day of the year so they eat grapes and drink sparkling wine. Sweet grapes guarantee good luck and sour grapes suggest bad vibes. Here is the Black Label’s story. Do you have any New Years Eve traditions? Feel free to share them in the comments section. Have a happy and safe New Years Eve, everyone and I’ll see you next year 🙂        

Photo from Google Search

Guest Post: The Magoffin Home of El Paso

Our dear friend Lisa Amaya invited us to write a guest post in her wonderful blog Life of an El Paso Woman. We asked Lisa what would be a good topic. Of course she gave us some ideas — anything related to El Paso, review, parenting or anything else you prefer. 🙂 We thought — ha, how hard can it be to write as a guest on an almost open-ended topic? We thought hard about the topic! Coming to a decision became impossible. We had to seek help from Dear Son. Dear Son rejected most of the pictures we showed him by just saying a big nooooo. After showing him a significant number of pictures, he seemed satisfied with the pictures we took at the Magoffin Home State Historic Site here in El Paso. He selected these pictures not because we demonstrated our utmost photography skills in shooting them but because we visited the Magoffin Home recently. Yes, 4-year-olds like stories. The latest they are, the better. Magoffin Home here we come … I mean we found our topic.

Settle in El Paso team

Who was Mr. Magoffin? 

Magoffin Home State is a historic site that reflects the multicultural era of the 19th century. Joseph Magoffin, the first owner of the Magoffin Home was elected mayor of El Paso four times in 1881, 1883, 1898 and again in 1899. There were many reasons why he was so popular, one of which was simply his devotion to help the town. Magoffin personally worked day and night with his crews to keep water out of the town during a major flood. He also took steps to rebuild the town after a major calamity. He worked with the federal government to change the course of the Rio Grande river a bit to protect El Paso’s lower lands. There are many great stories about Joseph Magoffin. For curious minds, Texas Historical Commission provides great pictures and describes the history of the Magoffins.

A visit to the Magoffin Home

First, we went to the visitors center (1117 Magoffin Ave., El Paso, Texas). The visitors center has some pictures and tokens of old times. There is also a video documentary, which visitors can start and watch anytime. There are guided tours to the site that begin every hour. All tours start from the visitors center.

Entrance of Magoffin Home.
Entrance of the Magoffin Home
We watched the video, which gave us a glimpse of the history of Magoffin Home. Promptly on the hour, our guide was ready to give us the tour. The good thing about winter is — tourism is not rushed. 🙂 There were only three visitors — Dear Son, Dear Mom and Dear Dad to enjoy the tour on that hour. The Magoffin Home is across from the visitors center. Our guide showed us the way while he was giving us information about the Magoffin family. The house looked gorgeous from the front. It was built in 1875. The house has a local adobe style, a building made of earth and organic materials. Although the building went through a few phases of renovations and restorations overtime, the original structure along with many furniture pieces remained intact. The site was overseen by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department from 1976. Texas Historical Commission has been overseeing this site since 2008.

We entered the house and enjoyed the ride on a time machine, of course figuratively speaking. There were pictures of the Magoffins around. Our guide described the history of all the Magoffins with great enthusiasm. There were one or two pictures of unidentified people. Historians are still working on discovering the names of these people.

Magoffin Home was a symbol of modern technology of its time. The house had a plumbing system, which was rare at that time. It even had a telephone. The number of that telephone was 10. Magoffin Home probably had the 10th telephone in El Paso.

The piano at Magoffin Home was built in 1881.
The piano at the Magoffin Home was built in 1881.
There are big dining halls, living rooms, bedrooms, a children’s playroom, an old office room and old bathrooms in this house. The wallpaper isn’t original; it wouldn’t survive this long. The curators restored the wallpaper with modern restoration materials. The walls had the same look and feel as the originals. We could see the original walls in some of the pictures. Most of the furniture pieces are original. There is a large piano, which is still in pristine condition. Our guide told us that piano is maintained regularly.
A bed and a crib. We were told early beds were shorter because people slept sitting up.
The Magoffin Home courtyard has a lovely statue named Angelot. Our guide informed us that it was reproduced in 2010. Parts of the original statue were used for reproduction. The new Angelot is more structurally sound than the original statue but looks exactly like the original one. Our guide surprised us when he said that this is the courtyard where he administered his first wedding as a minister. It was exciting to learn that a minister was giving us the tour.
Angelot.
Angelot
The City Hall time capsule of 1899 is placed in the courtyard. The cemented rock is marked with the text JOSEPH MACOFFIN MAYOR: CITY HALL: BUILT 1899. The contents of the time capsule are displayed in other museums of El Paso.

The tour was about to end. Before we left the site, we enjoyed the outside views where there were shrubs and trees. Our guide informed us that the grounds of the Magoffin Home and the visitors center can be rented for receptions, banquets and other events.

We went back to the visitors center and said bye to our guide. We purchased a few books from the center and picked up brochures with additional information about other historical sites in El Paso. Our time travel ended, figuratively speaking with lovely pictures of the past in our minds.

Settle in El Paso team

 

My Favorite Songs from 2016

Hi everyone and Happy Friday! Thank Goodness 2016 is FINALLY coming to an end! Are you ready for this year to be over too? It’s been a crazy year, especially in my personal life. I hope 2017 will be much better for me and everyone. 2016 was a pretty hard year to pick a lot of songs I liked. I decided with the following 10 songs and a couple of bonus songs. My blogging buddy, Tracy from A Joyful Process inspired me to do this post. You can check out his lists here. He has a great selection of mainstream and non-mainstream songs/albums.  Eclectic Music Lover did an awesome list of Top 100 songs from 2016. You can take a look at it here. I’m going to countdown my list of hits starting at number 10. What are your favorite songs and albums from 2016? WARNING: A few of these songs are NSFW (not suitable for work) or children. Please listen at your own risk.

Number 10- Justin Timberlake’s “Can’t Stop the Feeling” This is a nice, upbeat song that gets me going. The song was featured in the children’s movie, “Trolls.”

Number 9- Metallica’s “Hardwired” These guys can still rock after a few decades! I was really surprised when I heard they were coming out with a new album this year. They put on a hell of a show!

Number 8- Carlos Santana’s “Blues Magic” This song is sort of the story of my life right now 😉

Number 7- Future’s “Low Life” I’m not really into new rap. I got to see the guy at El Paso’s Neon Desert Music Festival in May and… I’ll admit he isn’t all that bad! I like his collaboration with The Weeknd in this one.

Number 6- Calvin Harris “This is what You Came for” I didn’t like this song when it first came out but…it eventually grew on me. I’m SO not a Rihanna fan but I guess this song is an exception to the rule. I honestly think someone else could’ve sang her part a lot better in this one (maybe even Taylor Swift?? Ha ha, imagine the drama there after her and Calvin’s breakup?) Calvin Harris’ beat is what gets me to like the song.  

Number 5- Ariana Grande’s “Dangerous Woman” Not much to say other than I like the beat and vocals in this one.

Number 4- Bruno Mars “24K Magic” Ever since I heard the song for the first time in October, I’ve been bobbing my head and singing along to it a lot lately.

Number 3- Twenty One Pilots “Heathens” It’s been awhile since I’ve followed a lot of alternative rock music (I think the last time was when Nirvana’s “Teen Spirit” was a huge hit!) This one’s being played on the Top 40 and rock stations here. I love the beats and lyrics of it. This one is no stranger in the blog.

Bonus songs:

Just a heads up, guys…my top two favorite songs from 2016 are both collaborations with The Weeknd and Daft Punk. I’ve already been saying it for years but I’ll say it again…The Weeknd has a TON of talent! I expect so many more great hits from him in the years to come. 

Number 2- The Weeknd’s “I feel it Coming”

 

Number 1- The Weeknd’s and Daft Punk’s “Starboy”

The 2016 Blogger Awards!

Hi everyone! There’s ONE day left to vote for your favorite blogs! I was nominated for The Wildcard Award. Feel free to spread the word in your blog and/or on social media. You can vote in the comments section of the Just Call me Elm Or Something blog.

Just Call me Elm Or Something

Hello everyone!

If you were around last year, you may have known a girl called TheAmbivert123, AKA Ambi, who hosted the 2015 Blogger Awards. It was the most amazing thing, for me, that had happened all year; it brought so many bloggers together and spread positivity. Unfortunately, due to a few things, Ambi had to delete her blog early this year (which, of course, was very upsetting).

A few weeks ago, I received a lovely email from her, asking me if I wanted to host the 2016 Blogger Awards, as she wasn’t around yet still wanted it to continue. After I got over my complete shock and screaming fangirl moment, I accepted: it was my favourite part of last year, and I’m so incredibly honoured to carry it on. Thank you, Ambi!

Right, onto the Awards: if you weren’t here last year, you won’t know how it works, so I…

View original post 1,122 more words