Showing posts from May, 2016

Mental Health Awareness Month: What To Say

Being a school counselor is not only about scheduling classes, preparing for graduation, or planning for college. More and more, I find myself dealing with students who experience anxiety, depression, or suicidal ideation. By no means am I a psychologist or psychiatrist to offer behavioral therapy or counseling, but I am someone on the school campus my students know they can come to when they "just don't feel right".

Some of my students are already under care of a mental health professional, so they know I am their support at school when they just need to talk or need a "time out" from class. For others, I am the first person they've ever opened up to about their cutting, their self-defeating thoughts, their feelings of being alone, their helplessness, their thoughts of "not wanting to be here anymore".

Many of us have encountered friends and/or family who may have displayed signs of mental illness. According to Mental Health America, some of thes…

Try the Legendary Burgers from Around The World with Hard Rock Cafe

Last Sunday, we spent the afternoon at Petco Park to watch the Padres vs. the Dodgers. My kids love the Kids Fest activities on Sundays and my #DancingDJGarcia did a great job performing with the Padres Kids Crew!

We were super hungry after the game and hubby was craving for one of his favorites: burgers! We headed to our local Hard Rock Cafe for their World Burger Tour. I've been talking up the burgers so much, hubby has been looking forward to our visit to Hard Rock Cafe! 

Hard Rock Cafe has given their chefs the freedom to create a unique Local Legendary Burger that captures the flavors of their city. This year more than 160 local burgers were evaluated by Hard Rock’s culinary team with fan favorites selected to headline the World Burger Tour menu. 
During our visit to Hard Rock Cafe San Diego, hubby tried the English Breakfast Burger from London, England.

The Certified Angus Beef® patty topped with sliced ham, a sausage patty, a fried egg, a portobello mushroom, arugula and g…

Open Your Heart at Wanderlust

Before I was a mom, Mother's Day was easy. My husband and I would spend breakfast with my mother-in-law and dinner with my mommy. I could squeeze in a nap between the two celebrations. It was easier then.

Since I've become a mom, I feel like I don't enjoy Mother's Day as much as I wish I could. I find myself squeezing time in my busy schedule to shop for my mom and mother-in-law. I find that on actual Mother's Day, my family divides the 16 or so waking hours to spend quality time between my mom, my mother-in-law, and myself.

A few times, we've tried to celebrate Mothers Day Eve for my mom and my mother-in-law, so I could enjoy Mother's Day for myself. But then I give myself a guilt trip for not spending actual Mother's Day with my mom.

This year I decided to do something for me. A few months ago, a Wanderlust event came across my Facebook feed. I was in awe of the pictures of an ocean of people doing yoga together and imagined what a wonderful experienc…

5 Tips to Get the Most Out of Your LA Cookie Con Experience

If you know me, I love sweets! And what better event for a sweet addict like me than a cookie convention?

A few weeks ago, I loaded my family and my Boozie Baker buddy Joyce into my mini-van and headed up to Los Angeles for the 2nd annual LA Cookie Con.

As we walked into the exhibit hall of the Los Angeles Convention Center, my eyes were as big as plates! I didn't know where to start! The first booth as soon as we walked in was the Farmer John booth with featured bacon infused sweets: bacon brownies and chocolate covered bacon - yummies!

There was so much to see and do, we spent two days at the convention!
My favorites at the convention include:
Interactive activities for the kids: the arts and crafts were a hit with my kids. They loved the cupcake decorating with Baby Bea's Baekshop the most, so much so they did it twice!

Tastes and bites of all things sweet: I loved the ice cream from Humboldt Creamery and the ice cream cookie sandwiches from Paradise Fine Cookies and Ice Cr…

Counselor Corner: Teamwork Makes the Dream Work

Something super awesome happened today! I really didn't think this would happen until later on in my career, but it happened today. My colleague Liliana and I were chosen by our peers and announced as the School Counselor of the Year at the Sweetwater Union High School District all counselor meeting today!

My Sweetwater Union High School district school counselor colleagues and I, all 140+ of us, meet quarterly. Topics related to the ins and outs of our role as school counselors are usually discussed: graduation requirements, college going rates, mental health, academic interventions, sexual harassment, career services, and more. Most of the time, it's information overload but it's all information we need to know and impacts our daily work.

Today was our last meeting of the year. The last all counselor meeting of each year is always special because we recognize those who are retiring, acknowledge members of the community who have been champions for school counselors, and t…

#FoodieFriday: Al Pastor Tacos with Citrus Slaw and Picked Onions

I've been having fun exploring new recipes this past Spring Break! Thanks to Del Real Foods and their pre-packaged dishes, making a homemade meal is easier!

The first recipe I made was the Pollo Asado Fusion Lumpia which my family loved!

As a busy mommy, meals that I can put together quickly is important. For the Del Real Recipe Challenge, I've tried to create recipes that incorporate prepackaged items to make the meal prep quick. This week I made a citrus slaw with pickled onions and jalapenos to compliment the Del Real Al Pastor Taco set. It came out very yum!
Head over to to vote for my recipe!

For the Citrus Slaw, I used:
Package of pre-made cole slawCan of Mandarin Oranges4 tablespoons of Thousand Island salad dressingJuice from 1 large lime Directions: Toss all together!

Mix it all up real good and you are done! Super easy!

For the picked onions:

One large red onion1 jalapeno1 cup water1/2 cup apple cider vinegar1/2 red wine vinegar1 tablespoon sugar1 …

Pollo Asado Lumpia Fusion

A perk of working in the education setting is having a few weeks of vacation spread out throughout the year. Spring break is extra special for me since it's two weeks long, the first of which my two boys are still in school. This Spring I was able to play around in the kitchen a bit during my time off. I tried out a few new recipes with the help of Del Real Foods.

The authentic Mexican cooking presented in easy and convenient heat-and-serve dishes is perfect for a busy family like ours. When thinking if dishes to cook, my kids come first. They are somewhat picky eaters, so I have to be creative in exposing them to new foods.

My son DJ loves the Filipino finger food Lumpia, so I took the Pollo Asado and Arroz from Del Real Foods as the main ingredients for my first spring break recipe: Pollo Asado Lumpia. 

Please visit to vote for my recipe!
Ingredients: Lumpia: 1 box Del Real Pollo Asado 1 box Del Real Arroz Pack of 25 egg roll, lumpia, or spring roll wrappers …