Category Archives: Abuela

The Color of Pan Tostado


Me: Abuela, I met a guy from Nicaragua.

Abuela: Oh si? What was he like? I don’t know any Nicaraguans. Did he look native? Asian?

Me: No, he looked like us! So white you wouldn’t know until he started talking in Spanish.

Abuela: I’m not white. I’m pan tostado [toast]. You’re white because you’re only half, but I’m not white.

Me: What are you talking about? You’re whiter than a ghost!

Abuela: No, I’m toast.

Me: Speaking of pan tostado… I met a Cuban guy, too.

Abuela: Oh si? White like you?

Me: No, he was the color of pan tostado just like Papi was! Plus, he’s from your hometown.

Abuela: I’m just as toasty as Papi was. Look at this color! It’s the color of toast. Maybe if you marry the Cuban, your children will have this nice color. My first three children got that pan tostado coloring. But Aunta (and your mother) was super white. Porcelain almost. My mother was pan tostado like me.

Me: I’ll let him know that we’re getting married and having pan tostado children.

Abuela Duty


Last Saturday…
Him: I had a dream about you last night. You were very flexible… So, what are you doing tonight? Want to go to Pedrito’s Posada with me?
Me: I’m on abuela duty.
Me (to myself): And I’m not that flexible.


On Monday…
Him: What are you doing for New Years?
Me: I think I’m going to Palm Springs.
Him: Who is he?
Me: There is no “he.” Debbie invited me.
Him: How am I supposed to get my New Year’s kiss if you’re in Palm Springs?
Me: You wouldn’t get one. I don’t kiss at midnight.
Him: I’m heartbroken now. It was the perfect excuse to kiss you… What are you doing tonight?
Me (to myself): Staying away from you, it would seem.
Me: I’m on abuela duty.


: I miss you too much already*…. Can I just propose and get it over with? This way you can be around more…
Me: Stop it. Wait… I forgot that it’s Friday**. Yes, go ahead.
Him: I got some chickens, a cow couple of goats and some pigs. I think that should be a good thing to present…. Besides I have been saving myself for marriage and you would be my first. Estoy señorito.
Me: I don’t believe you… about the chickens.
Him: I think your grandma would appreciate that kind of live stock that I am presenting to get you. A few people are coming over for dinner tomorrow, you should stop by. You could even stay the night if you like.
Me: Thanks, but I have family stuff and will be on abuela duty.
Him: You’re always on abuela duty.
Me (to myself): She is the best excuse I have when “I just don’t want to” won’t work.
Me: Yeap.


*Already? I can’t even remember the last time I’d seen him. And this was the first ever that I was hearing about him missing me. Granted, he invites me over all the time, but I rarely go.

**There were three Fridays in September where various individuals asked me to marry them for various reasons. I had shared the stories with this friend of mine, he found it hilarious and tried proposing the following Sunday. I explained I only accept proposals on Fridays so he waited for the next Friday. Today’s story marks the third time he has jokingly proposed. I am starting to worry.

La Virgen de Guadalupe


I love living with my abuela, but some times it is less than awesome.

Last night, I stopped dancing early because I was tired and thought “I’ll go to bed earlier than usual!”

And then I walked through my front door…

The lights were still on.

The TV was on. LOUD. (Abuela doesn’t hear very well.)

It was La Virgen de Guadalupe’s birthday, Saint Day, whatever the hell it is that has Mexicans partying all night and singing the damned “mañanitas” song at Midnight and is all over every Spanish station.

I think somewhere around 2am abuela finally decided it was basically over and she could go to bed.

My one consolation was that I would have a quiet morning because she’d sleep in.

HA! Never!

She was up before me and asking why I wasn’t already making the café when I walked out to make the café.

Virgen de Guadalupe? More like Virgen de Keep Kikita Up Late.

Que Viva Chango!


Ok, so I only celebrate Chango because I look good in red and white… And I like that Santa Barbara was always losing bg things, according to my abuela.
The biggest avocado you’ve ever seen? It’s the one “Que se perdió Santa Barbara.”

And the ultimate Cuban-American song celebrating Chango is by Willy Chirino, Mr. Don’t Touch the Banana.

Spilling More Than Just the Beans


I don’t know if it was because I’d had a great work out or if I just had too much on my mind or if it was too cold or what, but sleep was just not happening for me. And it was weird because I wasn’t having that frustrated “OMG, I can’t sleep” feeling.
When my alarm finally went off, I was deep in dreamland, but woke up feeling rested so I know I slept.

I then proceeded to spill …
The coffee beans.
The sugar.
The coffee. (I guess I didn’t tighten the cafetera properly.)

As I looked for tacitas to pour the cafe into, all I saw was one, on the higher shelf. I was a bit confused because it was one of a set that sits on the counter. I grabbed it and … the word “spill” does not correctly convey what happened. The tacita had still been full of yesterday’s cafe, which was now all over:
The counter.
The floor.

Hey, if I’m going to bathe in cafe, I BATHE in cafe.

Abuela (oblivious): Oye, chica, porque tardas tanto con el cafe?

30 Minutes, Please



I’m generally a happy, peppy person.


I’m finding that I prefer 30 minutes of quiet and alone time in the morning. Not to say that I am a bear or anything (although, with the proper lack of sleep, I can achieve bear status), I just want to be alone with my thoughts.

Abuela seems determined to not let me have these 30 minutes (not that I’ve specifically asked for them). On days when I get up earlier than normal, it’s like her radar goes off and she gets up earlier too. If I get up later, she tends to already be up and waiting. And chatty.

Her: What time is it?
What I say: 6:30
Her: 8:30?
Me: No. 6:30
Her: Where’s the cafe?
Me: I just got out here, I haven’t had a chance to make it yet.

*deep breaths, deep breaths*

Meanwhile, in my other life…

I look at the clock and it’s 8:30 and he’s still sleeping.
I look at the clock and it’s 9:30 and he’s still sleeping.
I look at the clock and it’s 9:37 and he’s still sleeping.

I can’t take it anymore. I get up. I get dressed. I walk the dog. I check my facebook. I check my email. I check the clock, it’s 10:17 and he’s still sleeping. It’s very sweet of him to give me my 30 minutes of quiet and alone time, no?

I look at the cafetera longingly…  

I wake him up. Unlike me, he IS a bear. A stubborn bear who insists on making the cafe himself. So I do my best to give him 30 minutes of quiet and alone time, as long as he’s making me cafe.

Hey, at least I don’t ask him what time it is. 😉