2014 in review

In case anyone is interested in my blog stats 🙂 Here’s how my year went…

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here's an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 15,000 times in 2014. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 6 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

Dos Equis treinta y cinco

courtesy of dosequis.com

courtesy of dosequis.com

Feliz lunes.!! Happy Monday.!! What an amazing week and weekend it has been 🙂 For starters, one of my very bestest friends came into town for Christmas.!! I was able to spend two lovely days with her. One evening, I met up with her and her husband and a group of friends. We had lovely Belgian beer and played the game Cards Against Humanity. Honestly, until that day I had never heard of the game, but I think I would like to play it again.! It’s very naughty…or very not politically correct. I also managed to have a lovely lunch with my bestie before she left and we exchanged Christmas presents 🙂 I also spent a lovely holiday at my father’s house. And when I returned a few days later, one of my godmother’s had left delicious Croatian cookies for us to nibble on. I have to admit, I left my dad a few and ran off with the rest.!! See the picture below and you will understand why 😀 jajaja

Croatian cookies

Croatian cookies

Of course, my neighbor stopped by one day and we noshed on pumpkin pie and caught up on the latest gossip.! I also exchanged presents and spent some quality time with boy wonder 🙂 On Sunday, I enjoyed some really authentic Mexican cuisine with one of my oldest (in terms of time not age) friends complete with Mexican music.!! It was almost like being in playa.! And just in case you all think I’ve fallen off the wagon.! Fear not, I also managed to get in all of my workouts.!! Did I mention that I went to work too.?!? It has been an intense week, but most assuredly a good one.!! I’m looking forward to this week because I have two more friends coming in from out of town.! And it is the New Year 2015. I am so wishing for a spectacular new year for me, for my family, for my friends, and for you my dear readers and fellow bloggers. I leave you with a colorful Dos Equis holiday commercial.!! Enjoy.!! Y salud.!!

Guest Post: La Posada- Having Ourselves a Merry Little Christmas

Please enjoy this blog post from Mexico Retold. It features a guest blog about the Mexican tradition of La Posada from Tea and Tacos.!

Mexico Retold

When I first saw Ellie’s blog Tea and Tacos, I was immediately drawn to the name. It perfectly blends the Mexican and the English and it made me smile, as do so many of her posts. You can read in every word, just how much Ellie has fallen in love with Mexico and the family that she lives with. She was therefore a perfect person to guest post on Mexico Retold. I hope you enjoy her piece all about the Christmas Posada, by line two I already had a big smile on my face! Happy Christmas to everyone…

Omar is the archetypal patriarch, and never more in his element than when hosting a traditional Mexican fiesta surrounded by his nearest and dearest and whoever else wants to tag along –  everybody’s welcome. They say that his sizeable paunch doesn’t house an enormous stomach but his corazoncote – his giant heart. Like…

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courtesy of urbanext.illinois.edu

courtesy of urbanext.illinois.edu

Merry Christmas Eve.!! Feliz Nochebuena.!! I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday season.!! And for those of you who are expecting presents from Santa, I hope he’s good to you 🙂 Before, I go and enjoy the festivities, I think a history lesson might be in order. Nochebuena directly translates into ‘a good night.’ However, it indirectly translates into Christmas Eve.! But nochebuena also has another very important meaning.! It is our traditional Christmas flower – the poinsettia.!!

Nochebuena originated in Mexico.!! Originally, it was used by the Aztecs for it’s deep red color in dyes and in purity rituals. Mexicans began to use the flower in holiday celebrations during the 16th to 18th centuries also because of it’s deep vibrant color. But also because it’s flowering season directly coincided with the holiday one 🙂 During the presidency of James Monroe, a botanical expert by the name of Joel Roberts Pointsett was named prime minister of the United States in Mexico (ambassadorships were to follow later).

I’m sure you can figure out the rest dear reader just by good ole’ Joel’s last name. Pointsett took nochebuena back to the states and renamed it poinsettia.!! And the rest is Christmas history my dear friends.!! Nochebuena is now one of the biggest symbols of the Christmas season.!! Most poinsettias in the U.S. originate on Mexican farms. So it all comes full circle.! Merry Christmas.!! ¡Feliz Navidad! Please enjoy Jose Feliciano’s Feliz Navidad.!! See you over the weekend 🙂

Dos Equis treinta y cuatro

courtesy of dosequis.com

courtesy of dosequis.com

Feliz lunes.!! Happy Monday.!! What a week.! What a weekend.! Life has been busy with work this past week as I caught up on end of year projects. On top of that, there was holiday shopping and wrapping to do.! And of course, I treated myself to a Christmas present.!! My warm, take no prisoners, kick Chicago’s winter a$$ boots arrived last week. I’m ready winter.! Bring it.!! hahaha.. I’ve already received a few gifts and I have to say I’ve been pleasantly surprised 😀 Needless to say, I hope Santa thinks I’ve been at least a semi-decent girl and brings more.!!

Dos Equis’ Most Interesting Man in the World is back.!! I know you have all missed him 🙂 Unfortunately, it’s not a TV commercial per se; it’s a radio commercial. But the radio spot is for the holidays and it had me rolling with laughter. I especially liked that the Nine Ladies Dancing in the “Twelve Days of Christmas” is attributed to the Most Interesting Man in the World.!! jajaja… I have copied the radio spot below, but the video does have the announcer’s voice which makes it completely worthwhile.!! Enjoy.!! Y salud.!!

“His snow globe gets 24 inches of fresh powder annually.
Regardless of temperature, you can never see his breath.
His Turduckin consists of a duck inside a chicken inside a turkey . . . back inside the original duck.
He has never relied on mistletoe.
His New Year’s resolutions would blow your mind. That’s why he doesn’t tell anyone.
He is the reason those nine ladies are dancing.
One should never shake his gifts. Just trust me on this one.
He is the most interesting man in the world.”

dulce suenos…

courtesy of sodahead.com

courtesy of sodahead.com

I keep having the strangest dreams. About playa… I feel like she’s calling me. Telling me she misses me. Trying to convince me to return.!

Last night in my dreams, I was vacationing in Playa del Carmen. I went to the beach for some sun. Then I met up with some friends (who are actually from Chicago) at the bars and we had some drinks. My friends (from Chicago) kept pestering me to stay in playa and not leave. Then in the dream, I got a phone call from a guy I used to date in playa and he tried to convince me to stay also. (And trust me dear readers, not only would I not take a call from him, but I would not stay for him either.! lol…) But strangely, the longer we talked on the phone, the more he/his voice morphed into the man I love here in Chicago. Que raro, no.?!

I woke up scratching my head in confusion. Maybe I’m actually starting to like living in Chicago.! gAsP.!! Maybe playa can tell and she’s getting jelly (jealous). So she’s started this dream assault on me to change my mind. But in the midst of the dreams, my subconscious takes over and tells playa she’s (me) not falling for that anymore.! She has a life here.! Just maybe…

In the meantime, I’m just going to keep wishing myself ‘sweet dreams’ or ‘dulce suenos’ before I go to bed. I’m hoping the crazy dreams will stop or they’ll start making more sense. I don’t know dear readers, what do you think is going on.?? Maybe Annie Lennox can help me make sense out of all this 🙂 I leave you with a little ditty from the Eurythmics.!

I’m dreaming of a beach Christmas….

Last year, we had a really (I mean really) cold winter.!! I never could seem to get warm enough. And I thought about Mexico and how warm it is living in playa during the holidays. This year, from what I’ve heard, Chicago is going to have the worst winter on record since 1905 or something like that.!! Geesh.! Can’t a girl catch a break.?!? In preparation, I bought some rugged Canadian kick winter’s ass boots.! And they arrived today.! There is a small part of me that’s looking forward to wearing them and having snow ball fights. And then of course, there’s always a part of me that’s dreaming of a beach Christmas…. So I thought we would take a walk back in time and see how I felt about this time last year 🙂


courtesy of Facebook.com/PlayadelCarmen.RivieraMaya paamul beach courtesy of Facebook.com/PlayadelCarmen.RivieraMaya

I have spent the last two Christmas’ in Mexico. It became my new tradition after leaving the states. The weather was usually a balmy 72 degrees, I had a nice tan, and somewhere on me there was always a wayward piece of sand.! I loved wearing a tank top, skirt, and flip flops everywhere I went. After growing up in the midwest my whole life, I didn’t miss that crazy weather one iota during the holidays.!!

Last night, I found myself sitting in my car in Chicago for 15 minutes while the defrost worked strenuously to melt the frozen ice on the inside of my windshield.! It was a balmy 0 degrees in Chicago – please note the sarcasm in my voice.! haha… I had on many layers of clothes, boots, scarves….etc…etc… Except for the radio playing, I was bored to death in the car…

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Bacardi welcome.!!

courtesy of bacardi.com

courtesy of bacardi.com

Feliz lunes a todos.!!! Happy Monday everyone.!!! I hope everyone’s weekend was spectacular and picture worthy.! I had a fabulous weekend 🙂 On Friday, I went to a holiday party at my job. We spent the afternoon in Chinatown and boy did we eat.! A lot.! I always enjoy spending time in Chicago’s Chinatown. I have many fond memories of hanging out there in my youth. On Saturday, I got to hang out with my dad and do some Christmas shopping for him. And on Saturday evening, I got to try out my herb salmon recipe on a willing participant. I got a thumbs up, so yay.!! Of course I worked out all weekend because the weather was in the 40s, so I had to take advantage of the warmer weather.

This weekend, I decided to continue with the Bacardi theme because my dear friend is leaving for Puerto Rico soon. We have one more goodbye dinner scheduled with our close friends this week at Girl and the Goat. I’m very excited to eat there as they’ve won so many foodie awards. But it will be bittersweet because my birthday buddy is heading for warmer climes. However, I still wanted to welcome her to the Latin quarter with this Bacardi commercial. I promise fellow readers, the Most Interesting Man in the World will return next week. Enjoy.!! Y salud.!!

hogar dulce hogar…

courtesy of digitalclaritygroup.com

courtesy of digitalclaritygroup.com

Hogar dulce hogar translates into home sweet home. Everyone always hears the saying, “mi casa a su casa” which literally means my house is your house. But hogar is the word that signifies home. Home where your mom cooks dinner or your wife or your significant other. Home is where your children play. Home is where your heart lives ❤

I offer you another view of my other home, mi otro hogar. Once again, it’s a beautiful video rendition from Nico Wilmes. But this time it’s a view of playa from the sky.!! And oh my.! Notice that beautiful sky that haunts my memories.! Enjoy.!! I know I did 🙂

the last full moon of 2014…

courtesy of facebook.com/soyplayense

courtesy of facebook.com/soyplayense

The countdown to the end of the year has begun. It’s December. Christmas and New Year’s Eve are around the corner. Time Magazine has picked it’s Person of the Year – the Ebola Fighters. The Nobel Prize has been announced and awarded. Pretty soon, we will start to see the best photos of 2014. The top songs of 2014.

Today, I offer you the last full moon or la última luna llena of 2014 from Playa del Carmen. It’s been over a year since last I was in playa. I hope I can make it back there in 2015 for a visit. But I especially hope it’s around a full moon.! So I can once again say, “hola luna, soy Rosa”.!