Monday, December 21, 2009


I'm sitting here waiting for Fonzy to get back from the store picking up last minute items for our trip tomorrow. The boys are in bed, but Ezekiel just called me, so he's not sleep. He's probably excited and can't sleep.

On this trip back to Texas I will get to see Samuel's headstone. I've have only seen a proof online, and haven't been to the cemetary since the day after his funeral. We will be heading to Abilene on Wednesday, exactly 7 months since Samuel was killed. I don't know how I will feel going to the cemetary, knowing he is there in the ground. Seeing his headstone will make it all too real. Even though seven months have passed, I still find it hard to believe he is gone. I have his phone number still programmed into my phone, even though his number has been disconnected. Not a day goes by that I don't think about him. I've thought about going to the place where he was shot. I wasn't able to while I was there for his funeral, maybe on this trip I will. Then again, maybe not. Fonzy was watching the First 48 the other night and I had to leave the room. The episode hit too close to home. A young guy, shot in a parking lot. They showed his body and all I saw was Samuel's body. How he must of looked. It was too much.

Samuel loved Abilene, Texas and tomorrow I will be on my way back to the place he was born and the place he now rests.



Manuel & Samuel

Somewhat packed and ready to go!

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camera bag

So tomorrow we leave to Texas for the holidays. We cleaned, did laundry and packed yesterday. I still have a little packing to do, but shouldn't take too long. The boys are too excited. They can't wait to get on the plane. Me on the other hand, not so much. I hate flying! Have a fear of flying actually. Fonzy's take on it....when it's your time, it's your time. So dont' worry about flying. I guess that's true. But I'm sure when I'm sitting on the plane tomorrow and it starts to roll down the runway his philosophy will be the furthest thing from my mind.

On another note, don't you just love my new camera bag/purse. It's an early Christmas present....a Jill-e design. I carry my camera with me everywhere and hated carrying a purse and camera bag. This functions as both! I have enough room for my camera and an extra lens and then my wallet and whatever else I need. I love it!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Our Exciting Saturday Night

We were suppose to be cleaning, washing clothes and getting ready for our trip to Texas on Tuesday. Instead we were in our unmade bed (sheets in the washer) on our computers.

Our life

Our life
The boys were knocked out in the livingroom.

This is our life.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Let it snow!

The weather man said we might get a few snow flurries today. He was right. Unfortunately it only lasted about 20 minutes. But it was pretty for my drive home from work.






Mami Dearest is going through some changes right now as is the owner - me!

2009 is almost gone and with the end, comes a new beginning. I've decided to pursure my dreams in 2010. I'm not getting any younger and there is still so much more I want to do with my life, so I am making babysteps now. The transformation of Mami Dearest is one of them. I want a space where I can showcase my photo's, since I've decided to get serious about my photography. Last year I got my first DSLR camera, a Nikon D60 and have yet to shoot out of auto mode. I have taken steps to learn more about photography, my camera, and even Photoshop. I have Photoshop and have no clue how to use it. So this is my year of learning. I've enrolled in the New York Institute of Photography - the professional photography course, have signed up for the free basic photography classes where I purchased my camera and am on the lookout for photoshop classes. I'm excited and ready to pursue my dreams in 2010.

So bear with me as I work on Mami Dearest to make it all sparkly and new!

Thursday, December 17, 2009


Yesterday on my way to drop the boys off at school, Ezekiel noticed the sunrise.

"Mom, you should take a picture"

I dropped the boys off and took Ezekiel's advice. I pulled to the side of the road and captured the flaming sky light up with a new day. A day filled with hope, promise, and pain. I sat thinking of a close girlfriend of mine who's sister died suddenly the other day, of Shirley, a fellow MOMS who had to count another year without her Jimmy and I thought of Samuel gone almost 7 months, but seeming like forever. So much pain...

But even with the pain, the sun rises to announce a new day. Hopefully a day filled with love, laugher, a little less pain and hope. Hope that one day there will be no more pain and we can be reunited with our children and loved ones we've lost.






Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Christmas Picture Outtakes

I had the bright idea to do a Christmas photoshoot with the boys. I had the image in my head of how I wanted the pictures to be. I got the old school big colored Christmas lights and was going to wrap the boys in the lights and take the cutest pictures! I had a Santa hat for Ezekiel and got the little reindeer antlers for Elijah. I couldn't help smiling thinking of how cute the pictures were going to be.

Of course taking the pictures was not what I had imagined! I don't know how photographers do it! I could not get Elijah to cooperate for anything! I tried the lights, but the boys said they were too hot and burned them. I felt the lights, they were a little warm, but not enough to burn anyone - at least not for the second or two to snap a picture. I tried a few shots with the lights, but it didn't work! The boys acted like they were being burned alive. So I got rid of the lights and just tried to get a decent picture of both of them. Here's the outtakes...


Ezekiel and Elijah

The boys

The boys

The boys

The boys
I finally got what I thought was a cute picture and had Christmas cards made. As soon as Fonzy saw them he told me not to send any to his side of the family! He hated the pic! I guess it's a man thing. I sent the cards to all my girlfriends and they loved it. I guess it's a mom thing.

I don't care what he says...they look cute! Of course when they get older they will probably hate me for this, but they will get over it! I even have it as my desktop picture at work and everyone smiles when they see it.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Playing catch up - picture style

Happenings at mi casa the past couple of weeks....

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Manuel and Andrea visited for a couple of weeks.

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Manuel tried to teach Andrea how to fish.

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Andrea giving it try - she caught nothing. Neither did Manuel for that matter.

Andrea and her belly

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Dad and Eva arrived for the Thanksgiving holiday

So did Ramon - Eva's brother

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Manuel and Andre - cousins meeting for the first time. They hit it off right from jump.

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Seeing the sights downtown Raleigh.

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Museum hopping

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Eva found a new man!

Manuel was almost eaten by a dinosaur.

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vivid green snakes were hanging around.

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Dad did a lot of this - like father, like daughter.

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Eva did a lot of this and even cleaned my stove! It looked like new!

We played a lot of spades

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And did a lot of this!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The boys & Andrea


I have been such a slacker with posting pictures from when Manuel and Andrea were here, along with Dad and everyone else. This is just a little tease until I get the others posted. I'm such a procrastinator....

Friday, December 4, 2009

Library changed sign

taken with blackberry

I went back to the library today to pick up another book I had reserved - Michael Jackson bio for Ezekiel. Remember, Ezekiel loves Michael Jackson. Well, as you can see, they had changed the sign on the display and also sent me the e-mail below. I didn't think they would change it, but happy they did.

"Ms. Veale, When I spoke with the staff person responsible for the display, she was horrified that she caused you pain. She had seen the phrasing used as a title of a book and thought that it would be intriguing to our mystery readers. She immediately changed the sign to read - Have yourself a merry little mystery. We are sorry that the wording was disturbing to you and are so sorry for your loss. We want the library to be a place of comfort and never one of distress."

Thursday, December 3, 2009

A Merry Little Murder!!!!!!?????

sign at the public library in section for murder mysteries

During lunch today I headed to the library to pick up some books I had reserved. As I walked thru the door, I was stopped short by the sign above….Have yourself a Merry Little Murder???? I’m sure to someone who has never experienced the loss of a loved one to murder, this sign would be cute with the reference to having a Merry Little Christmas, but it made me literary sick to my stomach. I just stood there for a minute dumbfounded. There wasn’t anything merry about Samuel’s murder or anyone’s murder for that matter.

I have to admit, I’ve read murder mysteries before, but I’m not sure I could now. I use to watch First 48, but don’t watch that anymore either. It hits too close to home. Having a loved one murdered changes your perspective. I’m thinking of sending an e-mail to the library. They may not do anything about it, but at least I have let them know how this seemingly innocent sign can affect someone who has to deal with murder every day. It's not merry at all!

****UPDATE: I sent an e-mail to the director of the libraries and just received a response. I was surprised to even get a response.

"Thank you so much for letting us know about the display at the Library. I am very sorry for your experience at the library today. I have contacted the Region Supervisor, and she will be at North Library tomorrow morning to address the display."

Monday, November 30, 2009

Christmas Parade

Since moving to Raleigh, we've been going to the annual Christmas parade. And every year while watching the parade, we dream of going to NYC to the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade. One day we will make it, but until then, here is Raleigh's parade.

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Betty or Wilma? Betty has always been my favorite.

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Santa's elves made an appearance.

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One of Raleigh's big floats. They had a hard time keeping him in the air.

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After the first hour or so, the boys were complaining of the cold. We didn't make it to see Santa at the end. We didn't make it last year either.

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Manuel & Andrea
Manuel and Andrea were across the street from us.

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