Tag Archives: Our Life

Our Life: When Are We No Longer Parents?

By Michael Armijo

It was only a 45-minute drive, but I arrived at the site. It took me another 10 minutes to find his “section,” but we were soon in the vicinity of where his life was laid to rest. As I paced each headstone, I had an eerie vision of him lying beneath the surface, watching me pace the yard, while his spirit yearned for me. Almost as though he was screaming, “I’m over here,” in a silent spirit.
I walked up to his plaque and I stared at the etching in the stone. I reluctantly read the words, “Cipriano Armijo, beloved man of God.” And after kneeling down on the soft, damp, green grass, I relaxed my body over the 8 by 4 foot section of landscape that was the last home to daddy’s body. I traced each word on the plaque with my hand, etching each letter of his name with my fingers.
When I knelt, I looked down upon the freshly cut, softened soil and confessed all the things that have happened since he left this earth. I explained to the ground, and to the bronze piece of metal that bears his name, my life without daddy with hopes his spirit heard my deepest fears and my strongest accomplishments. I told him that I had hoped he was proud of me, as my life had followed strange paths that have given me journeys of learning and routines of pain. Since his departure, life had become interesting and successful, yet painful and confusing.
When I sat at his gravesite, I realized what a misconception the phrase: “I no longer have parents, they died.” Because when I knelt at his site I held myself accountable of my actions and perceptions of life, just as when he was alive. I relayed the message; “I know you’re there, I know you’re watching.” As I crept to my knees, I still had a father and I still had someone to answer to.
I believe that parents are forever. Good or bad, their behavior and their actions stay in our memories. I believe that we never end our influence on our children, we never stop being parents. That’s why it’s so important that we do a good job each day while we’re here on earth; we have no guarantee of how long we’re going to be here. When we’re gone, when our heart stops and our spirit rises to the world beyond our hearts and minds, we can only hope that we’ve loved enough, lived enough, and laughed enough for our children to remember our lives as a benefit to their own, because we do live in their hearts forever.
Someday, when our own children kneel on the soft, moist, green grass that lies our last home to our bodies, we can only hope the tears that fill our children’s eyes and hearts are tears of love that yearn for us to forever watch over their joyous lives. This will remind them that we’ll never, ever, stop being their parents.

Our Life: Green Eggs and Ham

By Michael Armijo

I’ve looked at society and the everyday human being and I’ve come to the conclusion that; “I just don’t understand.” I don’t understand why people react the way they do, they play little games with others and sometimes, so adamantly, they convince themselves that life really is the misery that they proclaim. They realize that they have power and they pick and choose whom they’re going to benefit. Some people just feel they have the experience and the knowledge to choose who will gain from their power and their position in life; it’s up to them and no one else.

After getting off the phone with someone who had somewhat authority to make life easier for everyone, this person decided that today wasn’t a day to help anyone. At some point in our conversation, she realized that she isn’t going to help, and wouldn’t. Her logic was, “too bad,” and without regard, she decided she was not going to grant me any wishes. She decided that, based on my history, I didn’t deserve anything and I had no choice but to suffer the consequences of the misunderstandings that were evident.

I understand that a structured life has somewhat of a protocol, and procedures were made to reduce error and to be productive. But I also understand that there is an immeasurable element that structure, protocol, and procedure will have to take a back seat to, a measure I call “human compassion.” Not always will there be an answer we’ll always want to hear, and “too bad” ranks up there with the bad words, right next to “can’t” and “impossible.” I believe it’s not what you say in life, it’s how you say it.

When we speak to other individuals, we need to understand the importance of getting our point across. We need to understand the importance of communicating and educating others in order for them to see the entire picture. And when we run into those individuals who prefer not to educate others but instead choose who their power will benefit, we sometimes lose that wonderful vision of life that keeps our heart beating and allows our spirit to replenish.

Although we can sometimes feel that we are in a minority of society, we being the positive and outreaching, and regardless of these misunderstandings in life, regardless of the good intentions that we try to convey as true while others disregard, I still believe in many fantastic things. I still believe in the deep colorful shades that secrete in beautiful rainbows. I still believe the visual childhood implemented premise of the handsome prince charming coming for his beautiful princess, and that a gentle loving kiss can awaken her from her deep and lonely sleep. I still believe in the premise that wonderful people receive wonderful things at Christmas time. I still believe in the treasured happiness that our teachers and our parents implemented into our hearts; those unbelievable bedtime stories of happy scenarios with wish-like endings. And more importantly, I believe in the persistent philosophy in the certainty of the impossible in an age-old phrase that we’ve come to question; that there is a delicious taste embedded somewhere in “Green Eggs and Ham.” And regardless of all those who are out there, this belief helps me keep my faith in the goodness of the human spirit.

Our Life: The Consequences of Aggressive Behavior

By Michael Armijo

I’ve ran into people, and have practiced, at times subconsciously, what i define as “aggressive behavior.”

I believe that aggressive behavior comes in many forms. Some forms are in obvious threatening writing, some are in intelligent verbose writing, some are disguised as protective action, but most aggressive behavior is in actual physical delivery.

It’s difficult to handle these types of actions as individuals are clouded by what they believe is the truth, and others are just spewing their anger issues through an action that has nothing to do with the topic at hand.

Although protectiveness is admirable, individuals have a tendency to go straight into“attack mode” and disregard everyone involved. They blindly approach people with aggressiveness without realizing neither the consequences nor the outcome.So i stepped back for a moment and analyzed the root cause of such behavior.

What I’ve come to learn is that many people act out the anger they’ve carried from their childhood. We, as children, were abused and felt helpless. We were victims and had no say so nor did we have the physical ability to defend ourselves. So, as adults, we are quick to resort to “attack mode” in an effort to avoid feeling how we did as a child, trying to avoid feeling like a victim again.

Another misguidance appears to be our anger towards our own life, our lives within our current situation. We are angry with our spouses, our partners, our bosses, or ourselves. The mistakes we’ve made, the consequences of our irresponsible actions.

These are the times to remember that what happened to us as children, with negligent and abusive parents and/or siblings, is not the same as the situation in front of you. Sometimes criticism is constructive, not destructive. But that’s just one of the many scenarios that come to mind.

As a parent, I’ve made many comments that were not abusive, they were given in the fatherly protective love trying to help their child be a better human being, because I believe they have the ability to be better. But it sometimes isn’t received the way in which it was intended. And what I’ve learned from other parents, those scenarios can sometimes turn into another result of aggressive behavior.

What’s sometimes missed by the aggressor is the fact that when you go after someone aggressively, or angrily, the victims protective wall comes up. What happens next is that your input now turns into an unheard statement. Because the victimis so busy trying to protect themselves they are not listening to you. They too turn into a person who is in attack mode. Its not what you say in life,it’s how you say it.

I try to ask others to refrain from what appears to be aggressiveness and stick to common sense and wisdom that’ll appeal to others. You will help that way and you’ll be heard and respected.

No one has the temerity to treat others without respect, it just hurts everyone involved. And no one can give their burdens to others when their intentions are presented in a harmful delivery. You still have the perils that haunt you, bu tnow you can sometimes make new ones by your newest actions.

So I emphasize, and I understand the aggressive behavior now. I get it. I understand. But what I’ve learned is that you can get more from an individual by raising their spirits, than you can by lowering their dignity.

See the Miracles

By Melody Kraemer

Do you ever wish for a miracle? Do you ever hope things would change? Do you dream about how things could be better? I use to. Every day I would pray for a miracle that my child with autism would understand and have a full conversation with me. When I asked about his day he just repeats my words back. I have an idea how his days go at school yet I have no clue if he was happy, sad or even cried during the day.

Some days I wish, with every ounce of my being, he would express something to me. I have hoped for a miracle on many occasions for him to please share with me and talk to me. When he cries, I hurt because I know he can’t express himself fully and tell me why. I kept thinking one day a miracle will happen and he will walk up to me and say, hey mommy, guess what we did at school today or mommy I made a friend today.

Sometimes it makes me cry to think about him locked in his world. I hold onto that miracle that one day he will converse with me. The only conversation we do have is, first that then this. “Yes honey, I find myself saying every morning as he repeats himself, first school then home.”

Every day I search for that miracle and hold onto that glimmer of hope. Then one day as I was looking into his little face, seeing those beautiful little eyes it dawned on me. I shouldn’t be looking for a miracle when one was standing right in front of me. I have my miracle, in fact, I have four miracles.

Melody Kraemer is the Editor and Publisher of Macaroni Kid- Jurupa Valley- Eastvale as well as Macaroni Kid- Riverside. Visit her on the web at https://jurupavalley.macaronikid.com/ or https://riversideca.macaronikid.com/. For information or general encouragement feel free to email her at: autismmomofboys@gmail.com.


Melody Kraemer-Autism Mom

The other day I woke up with a heavy heart. My son got bullied while he was at school. No matter how much we try to protect our children we just can’t always be there with them.

Now my son is not one to sit back and take someone beating him up or kicking him while he is down, he will try and defend himself. On this particular day, he spits on a kid to protect himself from being bully.

He got in trouble, not in a lot of trouble, but he did get in trouble.  He used “bodily fluid” to defend himself.

He was angry over this; more than angry he was livid. He did not understand how in self-defense he was the one in trouble. Explaining to my autism child sometimes is like talking to a brick wall, his mind is black and white with no grey area.

The “bully” to my understanding got sent to the office, sent home with a note, and a phone call to the parents. He was also not allowed to play on the same playground as the class during recess.

When I picked up my son that day he broke down in front of me and just cried hard, as a mom my heart broke for him. I calmly listened to him; his hurt and anger were off the charts. I talked to him and tried my best to calm him down. All he could think about was how he was going to get revenge.

Autism thinking can be so perplexing at times and can be narrow-minded with no room for understanding.

It took me most of the day to explain that we don’t get revenge on people.

Though his anger grew and he still didn’t understand the concept why he got in trouble for defending himself.  Honestly, I still have a small issue understating it myself.

He was told by the school any time that anyone attempts to bully him or anyone he needs to go to an adult. I told him if there is no way he could get out of the situation and get to an adult he has every right to defend himself even if it meant spitting. He may get in trouble but I said if he felt that was the only way out of his situation he has to do what he has to do.

I have a 0% tolerance for bullying I will not tolerate my son or any other child to be bullied.

I can’t talk to every child, I can’t speak to every child who bullies, but I can and will talk to my child about bullying.


By Melody Kraemer

We all have choices. We all have options. When we wake up in the morning, we can decide to be happy, sad, frustrated even angry or whatever emotion we choose.

We can plan our day and make the choice of how we want it to go. It may not always go the way we want, but at least we have that choice in hopes, it goes the way we planned.

There are a few things that we can’t and don’t have choices for.  One thing is we didn’t have a choice when we were born, or the family we were born into.  We also are not to choose when we die.  Everything in between is an option or a choice for the most part.  My boys were born with autism that was not my choice or an option I would have chosen. I do though have the option and the choices to do what is the very best for them.  What school I put them in, the classes they have even the extra help they get after school.

The worst thing one can say is I don’t have an option. According to Merriam Dictionary, an option is “the power or right to choose.” I hope the choices I make for my boys are the right ones. I always have their best interest at heart. Yes, it can get tiresome from appointments to IEP meetings but I choose all of that because of the love I have for my boys and always want the best for them. I would never do anything in my life that made myself or my boys miserable and say, I have no other option but to do this. Life is about choices and options. Why choose something to make one miserable. Make the choices in life that bring joy, happiness and what is best for oneself and for the family. Remember there’s always an option.

Melody Kraemer

Editor and Publisher Macaroni Kid Jurupa Valley- Eastvale

and Macaroni Kid Riverside (autismmomofboys@gmail.com)


A Bad Day Doesn’t Make You a Bad Mother

By Melody Kraemer

Have you ever had one of those days where you couldn’t wait for bedtime? How about one of those days where nothing seems to go right? Maybe today was one of those days where you think you had the entire day planned out perfectly and not one thing you planned happened?

Or It could be one of those days where you lose your cool, and now you feel guilty for feeling the way you do? How about one of those days where your patience is so thin, even though you try with every ounce of your being to have patience, it’s just not coming easily? What about a day where you just plain feel agitated?  I am feeling each and every one of these things today.

The more the day goes on, the more I wish it was bedtime.

Everything has seemed to go wrong, even though I am trying hard to stay positive. Of course I believe my children sense when I am feeling this and view this as a challenge to see how far they can push me.

It is now late in the afternoon, and I’m rushing out the door to get my autistic children to their speech and OT classes. I see the clock, and it’s on the hour we are to be there.

Great, just another late arrival, I open the front door and my youngest bolts out and down the street while the other one is chasing him.  I raise my voice, sure that the next neighborhood over could hear me saying, “Get in the car!”

Feeling horrible inside and feeling like the worst mother ever I drive them to their classes. As they walk inside, I take this moment to feel relief and take a deep breath, I can’t help this overwhelming feeling of mommy guilt. I have raised my voice and have had no patience with my boys. I sit down in the waiting room and take out my computer to catch up on work since I now have to sit here for 2 hours.

I open up my laptop, and the first thing  I see is a post on Facebook, “Just because you are having a bad day, doesn’t make you a bad mom.”  Wow, I needed to hear that. That’s so right, we as moms are allowed bad days just as kids are allowed bad days, but it doesn’t make us a bad person. What it does do is remind us that we are only human. Next time I’m having a bad day I must remind myself, it’s a bad day and this bad day does not make me a bad mom. My children love me unconditionally even through my bad days just as I love them through theirs.

Melody Kraemer is the Editor and Publisher Macaroni Kid Jurupa Valley- Eastvale

and Macaroni Kid Riverside. For any information or general encouragement feel free to email me at: autismmomofboys@gmail.com



We Grow Flowers Not People

Melody Kramer – Autism Mom

School has started, and the homework has started to come home. For my eight-year-old autistic son, he had a paper to fill out titled “about me.”

I tried asking him these questions that were on this paper, but he didn’t quite understand. Usually, I have to do a lot of prompting.   One of the questions was, “what are some of my favorite things?”  He doesn’t grasp the word favorite, so I asked, do you like pizza? He replied yes. And it went from there.

Another question was, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” He answered, “A flower.”  I was surprised he said a flower. So I asked again.  The same answer. I asked are you sure that you don’t want to be a teacher or maybe a police officer when you grow up? He still wanted to be a flower.

It was a cute answer, and funny. I said if you want to be a flower, you can be a flower. Then I started thinking. The question I asked, when you “grow” up what do you want to be.  The way his mind may think it was the most logical answer. A flower grows.  So when I asked if he wanted to be a teacher or police officer and he gave me that strange look I got an understanding of how he was thinking. You don’t grow a teacher you grow a flower.

We are so used to our way of thinking, speaking and understanding a simple phrase, such as “what do you want to be when you grow up.” His autistic mind is so analytical and logical it just doesn’t make sense to him, we don’t grow people.

Now if I ask what do want to be for Halloween? Spiderman is the answer.

I guess we will leave that answer blank for now.  Just a thought, raising children is like growing a flower. We take care of them, feed them, protect them, we do everything to help them bloom.  He may not realize it now, but he’s already a flower in the garden of life.


Stress Makes a Mess

Melody Kramer – Autism Mom

All my life I have been an emotional eater. I eat when I’m happy, sad, grieving, angry,  and mostly when stressed.

Stress plays a huge part in my life.  Which in turn stress eating plays a more prominent role.  My stress levels of each day can rise to full capacity. How do I control my stress, I eat.


What is emotional eating?

“Emotional eating (or stress eating) is using food to make yourself feel better—eating to satisfy emotional needs, rather than to satisfy physical hunger. … Emotional hunger can’t be filled with food. Eating may feel good in the moment, but the feelings that triggered the eating are still there.



Raising two autistic boys, my level of stress can get to a high point during the day, but I am learning now, through a health coach, to not reach for unhealthy food while stressed.

We all know stress eating is not healthy.   When I am at the limit of my stress, I reach for that comfort food, it tastes so good, for that “moment.”  After that “moment” I’m still stressed. Even more so because now I feel tired and/or sluggish and my head is cloudy all filled up with the sugary and/or salty item I just ate.

So why eat when stressed?  For me, at that moment of stress, it’s an automatic trigger to go binge, for an “instant” rush of satisfaction.


Thank goodness for my health coach, he is teaching me how to change my lifestyle of eating and get on the right track to healthy living and to make better choices and not emotional eating.

I am sure many of you are living a healthy lifestyle, but for the ones that need that extra help of getting on the road to healthy eating, email me I’ll put you in contact with my health coach. Let’s get healthy together. I would love to hear from you, and my coach would like to help you.



Before the Morning

By Melody Kraemer

As I sit here in front of my laptop, with a cup of hot coffee to the right of me and next to that a notebook filled with the many things I need to accomplish.  The thought, “Oh Lord, help me make it through the day,” crosses my mind. The house is quiet, and I wonder how much longer before my boys (autistic boys) wake up.  How much time do I have to accomplish anything on that list next to me?

Once my boys are awake anything on that list is now pushed to another day.  I might be able to squeeze in a  few minutes to throw in some laundry, but I couldn’t tell you when it will come out of the dryer and get folded.

Having children, autism or not is a full-time job by its self.  Living in the autism world is a world where it’s no longer about oneself it’s about watching almost every moment of what they do.

My eight year old now has a thing about eating the top of pencils, almost every pencil in the house has no eraser.  Every paper clip, a piece of thread, Lego,

Basically any small object will find its way into my child’s mouth.

He is a curious one and will take apart things. He has no fear of heights and will climb and climb. He loves to explore the outside, but be always reminded, no bugs in the mouth, no snails in the mouth and no plants in the mouth.  Though those are just words and if I don’t constantly watch him he will have something in his mouth. There have been times where I’ve been grossed out.

We have high locks on the doors, and we have a front gate, we also have the backdoor strapped because when I take a chance on throwing that laundry in the washing machine I know, he can’t escape for that moment.

As I sit here and pick up that coffee cup on the right side of me, I hold it with two hands; I take in a deep breath and let it out, as I do every morning.  Will the day run smooth, or will I be finding something gross in the hands or mouth of my child?  Whatever the day may bring I will embrace it to the fullest, there is never a dull moment in this house.


Beautiful Challenges

By Melody Kramer – Autism Mom

My children are autistic

You may not see it from the start.

If you only knew the challenges

you would understand my heart.

I try my best from when they wake

to when they sleep,

Most nights I go to bed and weep.

I’m exhausted to no end

and coffee gets me through the day,

but nothing compares to the love that my boys give away.


They have their moments

Oh and are they tough

I ask God for patience

cause it can get rough.

If you only knew what I go through daily

from their tantrums to them losing control.

You wouldn’t be so quick to judge

and more acceptable to console.


It isn’t always easy raising kids,

especially one or two who’s autistic.

So forgive me please if at times I seem distant or cold

I’m just trying to hold it together, so I don’t lose control.

I love my boys with all my heart,

The lessons they teach me, the joy they bring,

the love they share, the smiles they give, the songs they sing.

God blessed me more then I could ever imagine

And yes they are a challenge what more can I say

I am so thankful I am their mommy every day.

Melody Kramer is the publisher of Macaroni Kid in Jurupa Valley and Riverside. Macaroni Kid is an online newsletter for family events. Check out the link below for more information about fun, exciting and educational events in your area.


Connecting With Your Spouse

Courtesy: Google Images

By Melody Kraemer-Stillwell


I looked at my husband sitting on the couch and wondered to myself, who is that man? He almost felt like a stranger living in our house. Then it dawned on me,  when was the last time we had a meal together that didn’t involve picky eaters, feeding a child, cutting up meals, and more?  When was the last time we had a conversation that didn’t include a million interruptions? When was the last time it was just him and I? It had been so long, I couldn’t remember when it was just us. I started to feel the distance between my husband and me, and I realized we were co-parenting in the house and that was it.  What happened to us? Kids and life!

Having an autistic child who is almost nine but is still, mentally, around the age of four can be challenging and exhausting.

We as parents need each other. It’s vital we stay connected. We can go out for a date night, but it’s not that easy. Having two autistic children, we can’t just hire a babysitter and head out the door. We came up with some ways we stay connected that what works for us:

  1. Say I love you daily to each other
  2. Smile at each other
  3. Text each other (and yes sometimes it is when we are in the house together)
  4. When we pass each other, in the house, make it a point to reach out and touch the other one.
  5. Random hugs
  6. Make it a point to get up early with your spouse and spend a few quiet moments together before they leave for work.
  7. Complement each other.
  8. Say thank you to each other (Thank you, honey, for doing the dishes..)
  9. Try and stay humble and never assume you know what the other is thinking (ok this is a hard one)
  10. Discuss things and try not to argue, and be honest with each other.

Though life can be challenging and daily living will get in the way, we have to stay connected as a couple and not just as co-parents. There will be times you may still feel distant from your spouse then look over to them and smile they will smile back all is right in our world.

Melody is the publisher of Macaroni Kid in Eastvale and Riverside.  Check out her online newsletter for fun family things to do at: http://www.jurupavalley.macaronikid.com


Meltdowns Happen – Autism Mom

By Melody Kraemer

Meltdowns are ok.  Oh wait, maybe you think I’m referring to children. I’m not! I am talking about a mommy meltdown.  In fact, today was that day that my patience ran out, and my autistic boys were in full form of being “needy.”  Have you ever heard someone say “I just can’t adult today!”  My saying is, “I just can’t autism today!” That’s right this mommy of two autism boys just had a complete meltdown.

Of course, no one saw me on the floor throwing a tantrum, nor did I scream and run away, or give up, even though I felt like it. I quietly had an emotional breakdown with tears running down my face.  I thought to myself, “Now I can’t be the only mom out there that wants to run away, go lock myself in the bathroom, open a bottle of wine, or just go to bed with the covers over my head.”

Parenting is tough, and we as moms aren’t perfect.  We lose our cool, and then the mommy guilt factors come in.  We all have experienced that mommy guilt. No matter how hard things get, how much mom guilt we put upon ourselves, we have to remember that we are not alone, every mom experiences these feelings.  We all have that mommy meltdown some time or another.  I said to my son today, “Mommy is doing the best she can, but it seems like her best isn’t good enough.” After  I  thought about what I said I realized my best for today is good enough because I’m giving my best and I’m not giving up. It also helped that my son saw my tears and said, “You are the most beautiful mom.”  Even during my meltdown, tears running down my face, feeling like the worst mom with the mommy guilt,  my children love me unconditionally.  We as moms have to remember our kids don’t expect perfection just a mom who is doing her best and loving her kids.


Autism MOM

By Melody Kraemer

Living with autism isn’t just part of my life. It’s my world. I don’t think much about it, it’ just what I do. I am a mother of 2 autistic boys.  I sometimes forget that people are not aware of what autism is. I have been asked many questions throughout the years regarding “autism.”

I would like to share the most asked questions and statements I have experienced over the years. These are just a the most asked out of the many questions I have been asked.

  1. Will they outgrow it?

Answer: No. But I can do everything in my power to help them to have a fulfilling life.

  1. Why is he flapping/spinning like that, how much sugar have you given him today?

Answer: Not much, he has autism, its part of his autism. He’s expressing himself.

  1. My sister’s nephew’s cousin has a boy with autism, so I know all about autism and what you are going through.

Answer: No, you really don’t because every autistic child is unique just like all children are unique.

  1. Are you sure he has autism, he looks normal?

Answer: What is normal? Is he supposed to have a tail?

  1. How did you know he had autism?

Answer: The Doctor told me

What made you take him to the Doctors in the first place?

Answer: Concerns. His nonverbal, nonsocial behavior, sensitivity to noise, food, and touch.

  1. Did you know before he was born that he had autism?

Answer: No, autism was not detected in the womb.

  1. What do you think happened that caused him to have autism?

Answer: I can’t answer that, nobody really can. I don’t know. According to austimspeaks.org. 1 out of 59 kids has autism.

  1. Is autism contagious?

Answer: No, it’s not. Your child will not catch autism from my child.

  1. Does he go to a special school for kids like him?

Answer: He’s in a public school, in the autism program.

  1. Where does the autism come from? Does it run in the family?

Answer: No, it does not run in our family.

This is just a handful of the questions an autism parent will be asked at least one time if not many times. I try and smile through the many questions I get on a daily basis. All I hope for is my children to be accepted and others to have the understanding and awareness of autism. If others become more aware of autism these questions would get asked less and less.

Melody is a mother, wife and small business owner. You can find her and community events on her online newsletters: Macaroni Kid Eastvale and Riverside.

Just A Little Girl

Photo Courtesy: Skitterphoto.com

By Anthony Saude

She wasn’t from around here, here she didn’t know anybody or even speak the language, but here is where she was to stay. Her feelings or opinion about the situation were negligible at best, after all she was just a little girl and kids get over it.

Life hadn’t been easy for her; it had been a very long 11 years. Not to worry, she is resilient; after all she is just a little girl. She had grown up without her father; he took his own life when she was very young. It is a good thing that she was just a little girl, she will get over it. The grown- ups make promises of a better life, in a better place, it will be fine she is just a little girl.

She has a new father now and things seem to be moving towards the promises the grown-ups made, hope is something she can believe in now. Tragedy strikes again and she loses another father in her life to death. She is young still, practically a little girl; she has her whole life ahead of her, she will be fine. The story is much longer but she was never the same and she isn’t a little girl anymore.

She was born in a land she knew, had a lot of friends and family loving on her since the day she was born. Life hadn’t been hard for her but her parents did divorce when she was young, not to worry though she was still just a little girl, it would be fine. Her mother remarried, not to worry she will get used to him, after all she is just a little girl. She isn’t fine, they aren’t fine, and they are no longer just little girls.

Life isn’t perfect they know this but does it have to be so overwhelming at times. How did she get here they sometimes wonder together silently in their own heads. The little girl from the distant land looks at the little girl from this land and gives thanks to the heavens for her daughter and her life. The little girl from this land is just thankful that the little girl from another land is her Mommy.


Family Troubles

By Anthony Saude

Marriage will always be something different than what was imagined, no matter how “ready” we are. The family is the latest addition to a long list of manmade endangered species. This has been happening for decades now, slowly sneaking up on us like a black cloud. Telling us that things just weren’t made to last forever, love and happiness are the same. You can’t have one without the other so make sure you have that escape hatch in your sight at all times.

Isn’t it interesting that less people are getting married these days because of they have been enlightened and educated in the field of happiness. Even though all of this “new” information has come to light in society today, divorce rates don’t change. The effort from men and organizations of men it will take to save the family in this environment will have to be monumental and all encompassing.

We save trees, whales, seals and bears. We protect fish, mice, birds and speech with a vengeance, as though our life depended on it but we bail on our families because we are “unhappy”. It seems we are more concerned about our own selfish feelings than the people that we are sitting across the table from. These are the very same people that we chose, of our own free will, to be the people sitting across the table from us.

Marriage will be something different, it will be something new and it can be a great adventure, if you let it. It will be a great teacher about the important things in life if you decide to be a great student. Of course you can always take the easy way out nobody can stop you. Life is choices.


There Are Many Things

By Anthony Saude

There are many things in this country and the world that will make you scratch you head and wonder, “what the heck is wrong with people.”

There are many things that start working on our mind the minute we wake up every morning.

There are many things that could continue to work on your mind all day and all night until you go to sleep, if you can sleep that is.

There are many things that can and can make us sad, mad, bitter, and anxious and a host of other thoughts or feelings that can confirm how ugly we feel about life or ourselves.

There are many things in this beautiful country and world that will make you scratch your head and wonder, “how are these people so positive and happy all the time” (what the heck is wrong with people)

There are many things, to be thankful for that can start working on our minds the minute we wake up every morning. (waking up at all)

There are many things that could continue to work on our minds all day and all night until we go to sleep. (how beautiful our country and world are, God made another day etc…)

There are many things that can make us happy, loving, compassionate and encouraging to others today and the days ahead.

THERE ARE MANY THINGS to chose from both positive and negative in this beautiful thing we call life. What day will you chose to for yourself to have today?

The Mexican Fisherman

By Michael Armijo


I’m convinced that deep inside our hearts we all possess the ability to be successful. I rely on a simple formula: “Confidence + Desire = Ability.” I believe that when we have confidence, and then add our desire, we find the path to ability. And I believe that each and every one of us can accomplish whatever we want, just as long as we have desire. But it has to come deep from within.

What I’ve also learned is that not everyone shares the same definition of success that I do, and I’ve learned that what’s important to me is not important to others.

As a motivator, I want the entire world to apply themselves and work hard to be on top. I want to encourage everyone to do their best and step up to their inner ability. But I’ve come to the realization that sometimes we have to really look clearly at the big picture, because sometimes our goals are the same. It all depends on how you look at it.

This brings me to a story I’d like to share, a story called:

The Mexican Fisherman

An American investment banker was at the pier of a small coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one fisherman docked.

Inside the small boat were several large yellow fin tuna. The American complimented the fisherman on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took to catch them. The fisherman replied, “Only a little while.” The American then asked, “Why didn’t you stay out longer and catch more fish?” The fisherman said, “With this I have more than enough to support my family’s needs.” The American then asked, “But what do you do with the rest of your time?” To which the fisherman replied; “I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take a siesta with my wife, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine and play guitar with my amigos. I have a full and busy life.”

The American scoffed; “I’m a Harvard MBA and I could help you. You should spend more time fishing; and with the proceeds, buy a bigger boat. With the proceeds from the bigger boat you could buy several boats. Eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats. Instead of selling your catch to a middleman, you would sell directly to the processor; eventually opening your own cannery. You would control the product, processing, and distribution. You would need to leave this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then Los Angeles, and eventually New York where you will run your ever-expanding enterprise.”

“But what then?” asked the fisherman. The American laughed and said: “That’s the best part. When the time is right you would announce an IPO and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich. You would make millions.”

“Millions?…Then what?” the fisherman asked.

The American said, “Then you would retire. Move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take siesta with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos.”

What this story reminds me is when you’re searching for success in life, you need to determine what success means. Just as the fisherman believed in his simple life, we need to look at the simplicity of what we really want. At times, we may find, we don’t need to look too far for success because sometimes we’re already successful. Some of us, deep inside, are simple, happy, already successful Mexican Fishermen.

Fear is Funny

Fear is such a strong emotion that it can actually take over our lives, until we die if we let it. Fear is funny even to talk about because we don’t really think about how many levels there are. That is why it goes undetected in our lives.

Fear is funny; think about it, people can fear both failure and success. The same person can fear both without even being aware that is what is going on inside of their minds.

Fear is funny; we fear abandonment then we get married, have children and increase our odds of it happening.

Fear is funny; we can become addicted to substances due to fear of our reality and also fear of the pain getting healthy enough to deal with reality.

Fear is funny; we don’t tell our spouse something out of fear they will get angry or worse and then yell at them for doing the same thing.

Fear keeps us from becoming the person God intended us to be. We are born with a spirit of courage and boldness. The world will always do it’s best to replace that with fear and intimidation. We have to stand tall in the face of fear so that our sons and daughters know what standing tall looks like. Then when fear inevitably enters their mind they will know how to push through the pain and turn their fear into positive energy. I have always said fear and excitement both produce adrenaline how we use that energy is up to us.

Fear is funny; we fear facing our fears as well as we are told don’t run from your fears. Overcoming fears is never an overnight process and it takes practice, intentionality and perseverance. Of course life would be easier if we just played it safe everyday in our professional, personal and marriage relationships but what fun would that be. Do something completely terrifying every day.

Train Wreck?

By Anthony Saude

My job is a wreck, my marriage is a wreck, my relationship with my family is a wreck, wow I guess my entire life is a wreck. How many people are thinking one or more of those things right now? Daily? That is a lot of pressure for anybody even though it is never all unwarranted. Our answers? If only I made more money, or I had a better boss. If only my spouse treated me better, my family are a bunch of wackos anyway.

This is where joy has to come into play in our lives. How do we get joy? Well Jesus is the easy answer but we still have to think about the positive effect He has had on our lives. Not always easy based on our circumstances.

Think about these answers for those very same questions; I have a job and endless resources to find one I like better while I am working here. My spouse seems unhappy; I wonder what I could do to make their life a little easier today. I have a family, a lot of people don’t, and they love me. Are we not all our own little special kind of crazy anyway?

Is our life really a wreck or is it us that is the wreck? If so what can we do today to start moving in the right direction? It will take practice but you can start with this thought; if our lives are a wreck then the world we live in is a train wreck. Get off the train and work harder on the positive than you do on the negative. One step at a time, run only after you are able to run. What decisions we make today fuels the life we have tomorrow.