Archive for July, 2014|Monthly archive page

Thirsty Thursday: Southmost Valley Church and Catholic School

In ♥ & Soul, Community, Health, Higher Ed, Home Sweet Home, Pro-DiSPO, Public Interest, Relationships, Thirsty Thursday, Travel, Weekly Wonders, Workin' Woman, Yours Truly on 07/31/2014 at 14:20

🙏Pray with Praise & Thanks + for Peace✌️


After school business, I visited more beautiful Churches.


St. Joseph’s (San Benito)


Following my meeting yesterday, with a principal of the Catholic school where my Ph.D. professor served as CEO/President, I went to this Cathedral close to the border.


Immaculate Conception Cathedral (Brownsville)


Due to over a year worth of renovations, it will be closed until September 15, 2014.


Luckily, the gift shop was open for pasalubong!


Oblates of Mary Immaculate is my dear friend and Valley native, Bishop Mike’s religious order!


☝️God’s Blessings👏

Workout Wednesday: Move with the Groove

In ♥ & Soul, Community, Home Sweet Home, Pro-DiSPO, Public Interest, Relationships, Sports, Travel, Weekly Wonders, Workout Wednesday, Yours Truly on 07/30/2014 at 20:45

♪Groove is in the ♥heart♥♫

Wayback Wednesday: The dress I wore to Salsa Night fit me much better a decade ago!

Dancing is the ultimate cardio workout! Almost a couple of weeks ago, this hottie in my hometown took me to Salsa Night. Then this past weekend, I practiced más salsa y merengue plus cumbia and bachata when mis amigos threw me a comida for my homecoming en el Valle (I’m just not the best follower)…

Rewards Reaped from Dancing

  • building your cardiovascular endurance
  • enhancing your coordination and rhythm
  • can be performed solo or with partners
  • guaranteed fun with your music of choice

Whether you’re into Latin dances like the ones that I mentioned or others that I’m into (i.e., line dancing, two-stepping, hip hop), or have your own kinds of moves up your sleeve, you can dance the day or night away while melting the calories away ~ now that heat can’t be beat!

Island Fun

Wayback Wednesday: Time to dip with my Karaoke partner! I like to twirl too!

♪Rhythm is gonna get YOU♫

Beauty Tuesday: Teacher Makeover

In ♥ & Soul, Beauty Tuesday, Health, Pro-DiSPO, Public Interest, Weekly Wonders, What's Hot, Workin' Woman, Yours Truly on 07/29/2014 at 14:00

As if?

Remember the almost two decade-old flick, Clueless, where the main characters makeover their teacher?

Well, two of my superstar students revamped my look in class today! They schooled us on braiding and eye makeup for their demonstration speeches.


Starting off with a French Braid at the crown …

First, I got my hair did.


Wrapping it up with a Waterfall Braid on the side!

Then, my face!


My students’ makeup by Sephora + my mascara & lipstick by M•A•C

As Van Halen sings …


Glam & Glitz ~ ♪ready for a Ballroom Blitz♫!

♪ ☼HOT☼ for Teacher ♫

& I look forward to my senior drum major student doing my nails in ombré style with school colors mañana!

Survey Saturday: Stroll down Memory Lane

In ♥ & Soul, Community, Health, Higher Ed, Home Sweet Home, Pro-DiSPO, Public Interest, Relationships, Study Saturday, Tag You're IT, Technology, Travel, What's Hot, Workin' Woman, Yours Truly on 07/26/2014 at 19:40

I haven’t done one of these Q&As in awhile, so since I’m caught up with school & work for once, I might as well!

Truth or dare from Sam Jonas jaja ^_^

Age given: 21 🎉
Where I lived: Abilene, TX 🐎
What I drove: 1998 pearl green Honda Civic EX coupe 🚗
What I did: finishing my sr yr of college @ McMurry University 🎓 & working @ Gap in the Mall of Abilene
Who had my heart: James E. Jones Jr. 💪
Age now: almost the BiG 3-3 next mo (hint-hint) 🎊
Where I live now: Harlingen, TX 🌴
What I drive now: opal sage metallic Honda CR-V EX-L (yes, I’m all about the green Honda EX editions) 🚙
What I do: finishing my Ph.D. @ Our Lady of the Lake University 🏤 + teaching college communication courses 🍎 & photographing beautiful people 📷
Who has my heart: GOD 1st & foremost ♡ ♡ ♡ 💖🙏☝️✌️💒


Foodie Friday: Road Food

In ♥ & Soul, Community, Health, Higher Ed, Home Sweet Home, Pro-DiSPO, Public Interest, Relationships, Thirsty Thursday, Travel, Weekly Wonders, Workin' Woman, Yours Truly on 07/25/2014 at 18:50

♪And I drive 1,000 miles♫

That’s exactly what I did when last weekend, and I usually grab an apple when I’m on-the-go. Thanks to my family, the food that they did provide helped tide me over during the two 500+mile rides! What would I do without their generosity?

Look who's welcoming home ...

Look who’s welcoming home …

When I left the Valley a week ago, mi Cuñada stocked up on snacks to last me a week’s worth of survival in the wilderness! Starbucks was where it was at!

... It's Annie!

… It’s Annie!

My GODmother hooked us up with pasalubong, so the mocha cake came in handy!

Ninang Auring‘s such a giver!

Then when I took off back to el Valle, my dad made a pot of Papa Jun Joe, and my sister hooked me up with horchata and breakfast tacos from La Popular!

Thirsty Thursday: Más Valley Churches

In ♥ & Soul, Community, Health, Higher Ed, Home Sweet Home, Pro-DiSPO, Public Interest, Relationships, Thirsty Thursday, Travel, Weekly Wonders, Workin' Woman, Yours Truly on 07/24/2014 at 13:50

🌞 Today’s Forecast: Heavenly Sunshine with 100% Chance of Showers of GOD’s Blessings 🌈

🌴 Upon my return to the Valley from Tita Brenda’s memorial, I went westward for more Churches that I attended when I lived here. 💒


OLSJ del Valle Basilica & Shrine (San Juan)


Our Lady of Perpetual Help (McAllen)




Holy Spirit (McAllen) ~ home of this Stations of the Cross

where I received my first 🍎teacher blessing🎓


Our Lady of Guadalupe (Mission)

where I 🎼sang🎤 in the 🎵choir🎶

Since my good friend’s dad, who tithed generously to their Church, is very sick, I started the St. Jude novena for them and their family. 🙏

☝️ Blessings of GOD’s Peace to all! ✌️

Workout Wednesday: Beast Mode on the Road

In ♥ & Soul, Community, Health, Higher Ed, Home Sweet Home, Pro-DiSPO, Public Interest, Sports, Technology, Travel, Weekly Wonders, What's Hot, Workin' Woman, Workout Wednesday, Yours Truly on 07/23/2014 at 22:00

🎼Whistle while you work…🎤

That helped Snow White’s Seven Dwarves get through a day at the coal mines! Well, how about behind the wheel: 🚘

🚙Exercise while you drive!🚗

🙏GOD☝️ and His 👼Guardian Angels😇 watched over my cross-state tour…


As I did the following moves:


* ☕️Coffee Tumbler Arm Work💪(alternating arms between sets)
* Curls (bis) * Flys (chest) * Rows (back)
* Steering Wheel Press (9 & 3 chest, 10 & 2 tris)
* Roof Raises (shoulders)
* Leg Extensions (quads)
* Ab Contractions
* Glute Clenches
* 🎵Freestyle Dance to my jams!🎶

NO Excuses for not fitting in a way to get fit during your trip!

Study Saturday: Superstar Students

In Community, Health, Higher Ed, Pro-DiSPO, Public Interest, Relationships, Sports, Study Saturday, Travel, Weekly Wonders, What's Hot, Workin' Woman, Yours Truly on 07/19/2014 at 18:40

🎼Shine🌞 🌠bright💫 like a 💎diamond🎵

My summer speech students impress me more and more every single day! Our principal informed me when I started teaching there that they’re the Cream of the Crop,🌽 as the top students of our school.🏤

As we wrapped up the week, they turned in their résumés📜 and did their interviews💼 to prepare them for the workforce. Props👊 to their professionalism👔 and my photography📷 skills!


Following our interviews, they expressed their value of their class ranking, GPA and bright future careers. I have one particular student who aims to become a trauma physician😷 and already is making her mark on campus through her club involvement. All of them are ambitious and are heading toward their aspirations through their 🍎academic achievements🍏 and participation in extracurricular activities.🏈🏀⚽️⚾️🎾⛳️🎻🎺🎷🎸🔬🎮

Once class was over, I enjoyed lunch🍛 with the ☝️Rising Seniors. They all seem wise beyond their years, and I feel extremely blessed to teach them one of their college credit courses (amongst others, as well as Advanced Placement/honors classes).


CHEERS to this Class of 2015!

Thirsty Thursday: MORE Valley Churches

In ♥ & Soul, Community, Health, Higher Ed, Home Sweet Home, Pro-DiSPO, Public Interest, Relationships, Thirsty Thursday, Travel, Weekly Wonders, Workin' Woman, Yours Truly on 07/18/2014 at 01:11

My beautiful Valley Church tour took me further throughout the lower RGV this past week.


After spending time working on my dissertation research at school last Saturday, I attended Vigil Mass at the nearby parish where we had my second Ph.D. Convocation.


St. Francis Xavier (La Feria)


The priest really struck a chord in me about how his Church lacked involvement in the Ministry, so I hope that he reached out to the Congregation members.


On Sunday, I swung by the grotto in Port Isabel, following my homecoming in South Padre Island.

Our Lady Star and Sea (Port Isabel)


My buddy also took me by another place of worship on the Island.

Chapel by the Sea (South Padre Island)


After work on Monday, I visited the Church where my nephew’s dad was the first altar boy.


Our Lady Queen of the Universe (San Benito)


Unfortunately, we lost a family friend that night, and I continued to pray for the repose of her soul on Tuesday.


St. Helen’s (Rio Hondo)


I’ve also taken my nephew and stepdaughter to Vacation Bible School, so I like to believe that they’re learning valuable lessons about GOD and His Word there.

R.I.P., Brenda Doria Paragas

Workout Wednesday: Get into the Ring!

In Health, Higher Ed, Pro-DiSPO, Public Interest, Sports, Technology, Weekly Wonders, Workin' Woman, Workout Wednesday on 07/16/2014 at 19:55

Get into KO shape!

Look and feel like a knockout by putting yourself into the ring. {in light of Canelo’s W over Lara}


Wayback Wednesday: Check out how swole Great Teacher Dispo‘s arms were with this glove! Was my vein popping out?

Boxing and Mixed Martial Arts are fun to watch, but imagine how much more kicks and grins we can get when we’re the ones in action. Prior to leaving town for work, I found out about a MMA gym, so I must check it out. Now that I’m back in the Valley, I may hit our boxing gym.

Boxing & MMA Health Benefits

  • Toning up our arms ~ upper cut and punches
  • Speeding up our legs ~ swift and fast feet
  • Shaping up our core ~ twisting and pivoting
  • Improving our hand-eye coordination
  • Enhancing our competitive edge

These are just two of the exciting ways to exercise with your workout buddies ~ not to mention that whoever wins in the ring gets bragging rights!

TKO = TBWO [Total Knock Out = Total Body Workout]