My Earliest Childhood Memory

Blog, Life

I have several moments in the early stages of my life that I can remember quite vividly. Memories that I can see clear as day in my head and even remember small details. At the age of two or three, my family and I were living in an apartment in the Kendall, Fl area. I don’t remember all the full details of the day, as in, what time of the month or what we were doing that day but I do remember that it was around the year 1994. I’m sure this story may be a little different from the perspectives of the people that were in the room with me on that day but this is what I actually can remember from those moments as they occurred.

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Photo Of The Actual Apartment We Lived In

Someone had just gifted me a toddler size beauty and the beast recliner chair. Within the first few moments of trying it out, I couldn’t quite understand how the mechanism worked. Despite my parent’s attempts to show me what to do, my impatience got the better of me. I managed to get the recliner to open up and had it in a full resting position. I thought I had finally figured it out until it came time to actually close. I tried multiple times to get it closed with everything that I had but it just wouldn’t budge. Out of frustration, three year old me thought it was a good time to just jump off the chair.

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I stood straight up and decided it would be a good idea to jump off the side of an open reclining arm chair. That’s when it happened. My foot got stuck in between the wedge of the seat and the arm as I jumped so I took a swan dive head first into the white tile floor. I am sure you can imagine the chaos that ensued after that fall. I busted my chin wide open. I can remember who I believe was my mom panicking and continuously saying “Se le ve la carne, se le ve la carne!” which means “You can see the meat, you can see the meat!”

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As scary and unsettling as that sounds, I only remember a few short moments after this chaos. I remember being laid down on a sofa and looking up to see all of the adults hovering above me assessing the damage to my tiny baby chin. My grandmother’s boyfriend at the time, who I referred to as Tata, was standing right above me with his hands on my chin. I remember him saying that I was fine and all I need was a butterfly stitch. I don’t remember the rest but to this day I have a one-inch scar that you can still see and feel on my chin.

I can laugh about it now because it has been over twenty years, but I am sure it wasn’t a laughing matter then. I guess you could say that the lesson here is to always be patient and to not jump off a chair if you’re as clumsy as I am!

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Thank you for visiting Untamed Rose Blog and reading about my earliest childhood memory. If you would like to see more, comment down below! 

My Top 10 Favorite Movies

Blog, Life

Have you ever just loved everything about a particular film? So much so that you can watch it and rewatch it multiple times and never get tired of it? How about a movie that impacts you so much that you become obsessed with it forever? Even if it is just one movie, there is something about the cinematic aspect that helps us connect to the characters or the plot. Not all movies have to have an impactful influence on you to be dubbed your favorite and there are certainly a few on my list that aren’t as impactful but that I just love so much because it has either made me laugh or kept my interest. Here are my top ten all-time favorite movies.

Kill Bill Vol. 1 & 2 [2003]

I know I piled two movies into one favorite here but because it’s a series, I figured that putting them together would be easier. Kill Bill is one of those Quentin Tarantino movies that I just love for some reason. Every time I tell someone that these are my favorite movies they always look at me like I have three heads. I don’t know if it’s because of the blood and gore that is splattered across the series or the fact that it’s an action movie. I’d assume that because I am a woman, that it may not be the choice of movie most people would expect. That might be true for most people and in most cases, yes, it is true for me. Action movies or movies with blood and gore aren’t generally my go-to movie choices so for a series like Kill Bill to make it onto my top ten all-time favorites can be a shock so I understand that. The thing I love the most about this series is the way the story is told. QT is a great story-teller and the way it’s portrayed in this film really captures the attention and keeps you indulged.

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Song Of The Sea [2014]

One of the more visually impactful movies that I have seen in a really long time. It’s a magical animated story about an old Irish folk tale of seals turning into people. As goofy as that sounds it’s actually really beautiful. This movie showcases the struggle of a family going through grief, how they project that grief, and how they overcome that grief together. It’s a one of a kind story that reaches within the soul and produces something truly magical. The illustrations to this movie really bring the story together and this is one of those movies that I will always watch.

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Moulin Rouge [2001]

I love all things musicals and broadway. I have since I was fourteen years old. I love the theatrics and I love the musical compositions. Everything about it just peaks my interest so when I saw Moulin Rouge for the first time several years ago, my feelings about it wasn’t that much different than the rest. I instantly fell in love with this movie. It’s a classic forbidden love story like Romeo & Juliet with a twist and a musical addition.  A penniless writer falls in love with a courtesan that is promised to a duke. A love triangle that is actually no love triangle at all. I’m usually a sucker for happy endings but this movie doesn’t have that ideal ending you’d find in a happily ever after story. Even with all the sadness, you still feel the deep love that was had between the two main characters. I love the way this story was told and how they used modern day music and applied it to 1890s style. This movie will always make me happy.

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Pineapple Express [2008]

This is one of those films that does not impact me in the slightest or speaks to my life personally but I love it just because it’s hilarious. This movie makes me laugh so much. I know most of the lines by heart and the jokes still never get old. It is one of the first movies with a Seth Rogen and James Franco duo that is absolutely hilarious to me. Add the fact that they’re high throughout the entire movie and you have pure comedic genius. This movie will forever be placed on my top favorites!

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The Shining [1980]

Another movie genre that I just love is horror/suspense. If you know me, then you know I would easily choose to watch a movie like The Shining in the middle of the day as easily as I would choose a movie like Pineapple Express. This doesn’t mean I don’t get scared in scary movies but they interest me and excite me more than anything. The Shining is one of those classic movies that isn’t exactly horror but mostly suspense. It’s a cabin fever type movie about a family that heads to a hotel with a violent history and become isolated because of a snow storm. The story takes a violent turn and your heart races as it begins to unfold before you. One of the original pioneers in the horror movie industry, I can’t think of any other reason why it shouldn’t be on my top favorites.

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Death At A Funeral [2007 British Version]

This movie reaches a whole new level of comedy for me. I don’t think I have ever laughed so hard at a movie continuously from beginning to end. For me, this is such a great movie. I know they have made an American remake since then but I am a firm believer in sticking to the originals. This one takes the cake without a doubt because of its hilarious chaos. If you’re looking for a laugh, I will always recommend this one. You’ll be belly laughing in no time, I promise!

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Jaws [1975]

Everyone has probably seen or heard of the famous great white shark the wreaks havoc on a beach thriving town by now. It’s another one of those suspense films that was made over thirty years ago but can still be dubbed as an all-time favorite today. They made a huge saga film base on this story and while I still consider all the other sequels to be a classic just the same, the first movie is the one I think deserves my most utmost praise. It’s the one that started it all. I can’t promise this movie will help you if you have a fear of sharks but it may just feed the craving if you’re dying to watch something suspenseful.

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Miss Peregrines Home For Peculiar Children [2016]

This movie goes in the vault of all-time favorites because first and foremost, it is a Tim Burton film. He is one of my favorite directors and I have watched almost every single movie he has created or has been a part of. Most people that know me, know this fact. So it may not come as a surprise the Home For Peculiar Children reached my top ten faves. It is based off a novel created by Ransom Riggs. This movie has all the awesome, creepy, suspenseful, and whimsical sightings you would usually find in any Tim Burton movie but instead of his normal stop motion characters, he has made these characters come to life. I loved the story and how it was told as well as all the Burtonesque visuals we get to experience. If you are interested in creepy style films, you will definitely want to add this to your collection.

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Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street [2007]

Another Tim Burton favorite for me! It gives me all of the elements I love most and almost all of the criteria I have stated in this blog post already. Creepy, suspenseful, blood, gore, and of course, musical. Many are familiar with the Broadway show of Sweeney Todd but Tim Burton’s rendition of it is definitely my favorite. A classic revenge story with so many twists. This movie always holds such a big chunk of my heart and I am never able to control myself from singing along when I am watching it. It may not be everyone’s cup of tea but it’s definitely mine.

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Everyone has different tastes when it comes to films so these are just my personal top ten all-time favorite movies that I love to spend my time watching. These selections may not be for everyone but I hope you enjoyed my small commentaries on some of the films I find enjoyable.

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Comment down below if any of these are your favorites too! – URB

10 Facts About Me

Blog, Life

Here are 10 random facts that you may not know about me. As we go on this journey together, you will get to learn a lot more about me and who I am. This is a list of some of the things I love, some of the things that scare me, and more!

1. I Am Obsessed With All Things Disney World

Ever since I was a little girl, I visited Walt Disney World quite frequently. I loved everything about it and to this day I visit as if it is my second home. I know my way around every park, I never need a map, and I never get bored with it no matter how many times I go.

2. I Have A Tattoo On My Left Ring Finger

When my husband and I got married, we immediately agreed that our wedding rings were more of a symbol than anything else. We didn’t think there was an importance in having expensive jewelry to prove a point that we were married. The only thing we knew was that it meant something more than what it cost. We decided to make it a little more permanent and got matching infinity symbol tattoos on our ring fingers. I believe it was one of the best decisions we have ever made.

3. I Am A Dog Person

I have always had dogs since I was a little girl. My very first experience with a dog was when I was 2 years old. My grandmother bought a baby Pomeranian and it was my best friend for several of my toddler years. We had a beagle for a short time after that. When I was 12, my parents took in a Labrador Mix puppy dog which we named Hazel. Three years later, we welcomed a wild purebred Beagle which we named Cookie. And today, I have a beautiful White German Shepherd named Nova. Dogs have been a big constant in my life and I have so much love for these animals.

4. I Have A Phobia Of Lizards 

Where do I begin with this topic? I don’t remember the exact day I realized that I was actually terrified of lizards. I think over the course of time and with what I would consider as traumatic experiences with these vile creatures, I just grew to despise them. One memory I remember very vividly was when I was helping a friend of mine move a bike in her backyard. As I was making my way home, I felt as if something was crawling up my leg. Horrified, I held onto this would-be-creature as I quickly made my way home to take off my pants and reveal the culprit. As soon as those pants came off, the blood-curdling scream that escaped from my mouth could have probably set off house alarms. From that day, there were just loads of stories that filled my life about the interactions with these vile things.

5. I Am Bilingual And Fluent In Spanish

As most of you know, I am Cuban-American and was born and raised in Miami, Fl. While it may not be a surprise to you that I can speak Spanish, sometimes new generations don’t care to speak it or aren’t able to communicate all that well. My grandmother taught me from a very young age to never lose my Spanish and to make sure that I knew it well enough to teach my children some day. Being an American, you tend to become consumed by its culture and I think it’s important to cling to your own cultures and values as to not lose who you are or who your ancestors were. Because of that, I am fluent in Spanish and can both read and write it.

6. I Am The Oldest Of 6 Siblings

Three boys and three girls, to be exact. Although it’s a long story to tell, the gist of it is that from three separate marriages there is now 7 of us total. We all live in different cities and I met most of them later on my teenage to adults years. Many of us still stay in contact with each other as much as we can but when we are together, it’s almost as if we were never apart.

7. I Didn’t Learn How To Ride A Bike Until I Was 13

I know, it’s such a shame. I don’t think I never learned out of fear, but more out of laziness. I can rollerblade like a pro but couldn’t ride a bike to save my life. It took me a full day to completely learn and I am still rusty even to this day.

8. I Don’t Know How To Swim

This is another one. I went to the beach all the time as a kid and spent most of my summers in a pool. And yet ironically, I have no clue how to swim. People have tried to teach me repeatedly, but to no avail, I never absorbed any of their information. I can probably doggy-paddle a bit if I try really hard but I am definitely not the strongest swimmer out there.

9. You Won’t Catch Me On An Airplane Anytime Soon

Ah, more phobias. I’ve been on planes before. And you’re probably thinking, “well if you’ve already been on them what’s the big deal?” Anxiety. That’s the big deal. They cause full on panic attacks and because of that I avoid flying altogether. If I want to get anywhere, I’d rather drive!

10. I Love Broadway Musicals

Yes! I have always been fascinated by musicals ever since the very first time I got to see Cats! at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts at just 15 years old. Since then, I have seen Wicked, Grease, Mary Poppins, and Cirque Du Soleil. My hope for the future is to see much more and add them to my growing list of favorites!

These are 10 small facts you didn’t know about me! For more articles like this, leave a comment down below and let me know what kind of personal facts would you like to know more about. Don’t forget to visit our February Favorites article and check out the products I have tried this month.

Time Doesn’t Heal All Wounds.

Blog, Life

Abuela Duly

My grandmother was my whole world. I lived the majority of the first bits of my life with her every single day. I was her favorite and it showed through. Growing up with her in my life and having her present almost every single day made her more of a mother figure than anything else. I have so many memories that I cherish so deeply because I only have so many. She was in my life for a short time, but during the short time, she showed me how much she loved me. I am grateful that though the memories are few, they are grand. My grandmother was a nail technician who ran a business out of her own home. She loved to dance and she loved to laugh. There was always music blaring at any time of day. She was the life of the party at all times and she was well-known for having such a beautiful personality. I always wanted to be around her. Every moment of every day.

She had this distinct way of saying my name. Some days I wish I could just hear her say it again. Just once. Or that I can hear her laugh just one more time. This loud squawk of a laugh that was infectious to those around her. If I could just hear that once more, I would be content.

Her Struggle

For anyone that has ever met my grandmother, or even spent a large amount of time with her, they would know that she hated the idea of getting old. And she most certainly hated the idea of being overweight. She was barely through her 40’s and she refused to get any wrinkles. She had a certain beauty ritual she followed to ensure this but her weight was always a struggle. She was constantly trying to look for new outrageous ways to lose weight. The day came when she finally thought she had found the solution to her problem.

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The Surgery

Around the beginning of 2001, there was a new surgery that emerged that was strictly in the experimental stages. Many would refer to it today as Gastric Bypass Surgery. For those of you that may not know, it is a surgery that helps you lose weight at a very rapid rate. As soon as this was advertised as a possibility, my grandmother quickly leaped at the chance of being one of the first people to try it. She had to go to several meetings with doctors leading up to the surgery. One of those meetings involved her signing a waiver in the event that something happened to her. My mother was hesitant with this idea and tried to convince her otherwise. I mean, it’s a scary thought to walk into a meeting with your mother and think of the possibility that she may not survive through something like this. I don’t think that anyone likes to be put in that position. But my grandmother persisted because she had this dream of having an ideal image.

She was beautiful. And I only wish she really knew how beautiful. She was always so well dressed. She loved to wear makeup and jewelry. He nails were always done and her hair always styled. Regardless of this, she went through with the procedure. Everything looked good the day she went in and before we knew it, the surgery was done and she was ready to go home to begin her recovery process. My grandmother wasn’t exactly the healthiest person due to her severe asthma and diabetes that she had battled with for most of her life. Her idea was that this surgery was going to be the solution to all of those problems. That her weight loss would be good for her.

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Her Death

The day they sent her home, we got a call that she had to be rushed back to the hospital. She had gone into toxic shock. Everything she consumed was just leaking into her system. Unfortunately, the doctors did not check for this immediately. Instead, they believed that it was an error of the procedure so they decided to operate her in a different way. It wasn’t after the second surgery that the doctors realized what the real problem was.

This left her in a coma for the 13 days. During that time, my grandmother woke up only once and it only lasted a short time. She told us that she loved us. My great-grandfather, who was a pastor, was there at the time she woke up from her coma. He spoke with her and prayed with her and was able to lead her to the Lord in those few short moments. As soon as this happened, she slipped back into her coma. She only lasted 13 days before she passed away.

I remember the night of her death excruciatingly well. When we got the call, my brother and I were getting ready for bed in our room. We were watching a movie and laying down on our bunk beds when we began to hear this whaling from the other room. My brother and I commented to each other that we thought our mom may have been laughing since that wasn’t an abnormal occurrence in our home. After a few minutes of this, we started to become worried. Laughing started to sound a lot more like hysterical crying so we both got up to see what was wrong. When we walked into our living room, my mother is sitting on the couch with her hand covering her face; crying. She had the phone in the other hand and someone was talking to her. I think at that moment I just knew. There could only be one reason my mom could be reacting that way. If I could recall the exact words that were said at that moment, I would. But there was such a rush of emotions that night that I think I had gone into a little bit of a shock.

My mother’s closest friends were the first to arrive at our house. I remember them trying to console us but the tears just flowed and flowed. That same night, my parents left me and my brother with my other grandparents (my dad’s parents). I remember that being such a weird experience. All I wanted was to be with my grandmother. I didn’t want to be there in that moment. My whole world had come crashing down and it was a lot to process.

Mourning

I was only 10 years old when she passed away. During the time she has been gone I have had so many people tell all kinds of things like – “time heals all wounds”, “the pain you feel will pass with time”, “it’s okay, she’s in a better place.” None of those things are comforting to say and none of those things relieve my pain. Being that young, I had never experienced anything like that. I had never had a death in my family let alone having it be someone I was incredibly close to. I didn’t know how to cope with it then and I am not so sure I am coping well with it now. I am now 25 years old and can say that none of those things people said are true. Time does not heal all wounds. The wounds are still there because the loss is still there. It doesn’t get any better, you only learn how to ignore it. I still struggle very much with her death. Fifteen birthdays have passed by without her. I got married and she wasn’t able to be there for it. My daughter was born and all I can think about is how she will never get to be in her life. She’ll never get to see her grow up and Arianna will never get to know her. So many milestones ahead of my life that will go by without her by my side. Life will go on and all that will be taken with us is a memory.

How exactly does time heal that wound? Everything that happens in my life is a constant reminder of what will never be. I don’t know what life would have been like if she was here today. And it’s probably selfish to think she’d be better off here with us because that’s what would make me feel better. But the bible tells us to think differently. This life is just a vapor. A small time on this earth and in this body to foresee a big, better time in heaven. To have eternal life is the reward we pay for the price of our life. While it is an unbearable pain for us here on earth, heaven promises eternal life but above all, it promises peace. And I long for peace.

“17. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, 18. as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.”

2 Corinthians 4:17-18 English Standard Version (ESV)

Fundamentals

Blog, Life

To talk about my life and give you a better understanding of who I am, you have to know the fundamentals of my families. Their stories that soon became my stories.

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Pictured Above: My Mother (Center); My Grandmother (Left); Grandmothers Sister (Right)

Growing up in Miami, there is a lot of cultures that exudes from there. My family is primarily of Cuban decent. My mother and grandmother arrived here on the historic Mariel Boat Charters that arrived in Miami, FL in the year 1980. They fled their homeland because of the oppressive ruling of their dictator leader Fidel Castro. They had to leave in secret and in the middle of the night out of fear of being imprisoned or killed for even the thought of leaving. Back then, when the Mariel Charters opened up, Fidel told his people that those who wished to leave the island could do so freely. He made it seem like it was something that was permitted. But, if it was found that you were one of the people choosing to leave, they would jail you, beat you, or far worse; kill you. So boats arrived in the middle of the night to pick up those who’s family paid for tickets for them to leave the island. They left behind everything. Their family, their homes, the belongings.

Pictured Above: My Grandmother, My Mother, And I.

Fast forwarding a few years later, my family established a life here in the United States. The beginning stages of my life were not as easy as it would be for the average child. My mother married my biological father very young. Around the age of 19, she gave birth to me. My biological father was deeply troubled. He and my mother were separated until I was about two years old when they would finally make the divorce official. His role in my life was becoming more and more obsolete by his own choosing. By the age of two, he was no longer a part of my life.

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Pictured Above: My Dad (Left); Me (Bottom Right)

During that time, my mother met someone and they instantly became connected.  He willingly took on the role of a father in my life. He chose to make sacrifices, he chose to put in the time, and he chose to pour love into my life. He’s the one who proudly worked for the title of ‘DAD’ and he earned so much love and respect from me because of it.

Pictured Above: With My Family, The Day My Brother Was Born.

My brother was born in 1993. From that moment on, we were a family of four. Happily going about our business and enjoying the life we built. There were many obstacles during that time. But all of those stories will be shared in my blog posts later on.

School was never really something that peeked my interest while growing up. I never enjoyed it even though I went through honors-level classes for most of Middle School and all of High School. When I think about it, the only classes that ever caught my attention was Art. It made me realize that drawing was one of my greater passions. It was a trait that I wanted to be better at and I worked really hard to develop my skills.

Pictured Above: Some Of My Personal Artwork Over The Years.

Ironically, when the time came to go to college, I choose a school that was geared more towards intellectual work than artistic nature. I ended up choosing Elementary Education as a major and quickly regretted it shortly after starting. I lasted there for about 2 years before I decided to drop out and pursue a career in something that I love doing.

This led me to explore the world on entrepreneurship. 

I’m still learning what that means; to be an entrepreneur. I have so many dreams and aspirations for what something like that would look like. Slowly but surely I am working towards those goals and I will be sharing with you a lot of my process. I don’t claim to be a pro at running my own business, but with time and several learning curves, I am gaining the experience I need to reach my endgame.