Monthly Archives: Oct 2012

10 Bilingual Activities while at home with hurricane Sandy!

I know, I know! You are at home for two days and you wished you could use some of this time to bring more bilingual love to your children at home??

Here are some suggestions!

1) Play Go Fish with your regular cards and they need to say the numbers out loud while playing the cards!

2) Youtube has some karaoke links to sing Spanish Songs, search for your favorite topic or songs to sing! Like this one:

3) Hide and Seek – One child will count to 20 in Spanish or any other language and the others will hide.

4) Frio o caliente – You hide an object and children will look for it and you will say frio when it is far and caliente when it is close to it, progressing to muy caliente, herviendo!

5) Reading books, bilingual or in the target language, specially comfort ones, my son is specially cuddly when storms come, I sit with him on the couch and read books in Spanish and Portuguese!

6) Cook! – I chop veggies, fruits, make cookies, sandwiches and basically anything which is an excuse to review or teach food vocab!

7) Coloring pages found on the web, while they color review colors or teach them in the target languages, specially rainbows, they are great to teach the children, the rainbow will come after the storm! Arcoiris, Arco iris!

8) It’s Halloween, give family members candy and have your child say a word in the target language to get a piece of candy! Each word is worth a piece! Just be careful, you don’t want your child bouncing up the walls after loaded with sugar! 🙂

9) Camping inside – Prepare sleeping bags, inside a children’s tent, toys, flashlight, a book and other objects inside and pretend you are camping and tell them a camp fire story and/or teach them vocab around you like tent, sleeping bag….

10) Play online foreign language games, always a favorite!

Hope you enjoyed our tips and share if you used them!



A mom in the mirror

              When thinking about inspiration to share as to  who inspired or inspires me, my mom was an obvious choice! She was a SAHM (Stay At Home Mom) who cooked everything from Chinese to African food. Our clothes were always impeccable, the house was always immaculate and she made sure she volunteered and was always there for us. Super Mom is an understatement, she would always make sure she was very involved in all areas of our lives and to me it felt a bit invasive, often prompting me to tune out….

She would place blankets on the floor for us to crawl, cook 3 – 4 dishes on one meal because we all liked different things! She would take the meat out of 20 crabs and give it to us to eat with a side dish so we would not have to break the crab; she would always sew buttons and anything else which needed fixing; she constantly hammered our conscience with what was the right thing to do and why we should not stray from that path….take that action, with an undergrad small town teacher degree, she taught me and made me who I am.

Guess what? I often catch myself “copying” her parenting style. I am super involved in my son’s education, sport, music and personal life to guide him and make sure he is on the right path. My choices are continuously influenced by my own childhood and the choices my parents made and their words and advice given to me. I’m also sure my son “tunes out” often but I know, the same way it happened to me, I am planting a seed which will feed the roots to his amazing journey here!

Today when I look in the mirror, I am proud of my parenting, business, personal accomplishments and in all my steps and decisions I see a little bit of my mom’s voice in it. I see myself growing old and looking more like her and the mirror reflects more than just my features, it reflects the unshakable foundation and influence, my mom’s wisdom has had on me; which to this date, continues to shape who I am and what I do!

After reading this post, do you feel inspired, but need support to grow and be the best mom you can be? Do you think you have what it takes to help a mom in need? I wanted to share that I recently found out  Johnson & Johnson and its partners support global motherhood with programs that meet the needs of moms and babies in the U.S. and around the world and I wanted to invite you as a seasoned or new mom, to get involved in raising awareness about global motherhood by using your social networks for social good!

PS – If you’re attending the LATISM conference (in Houston, TX, on October 26th – 28th, 2012) please stop by the Johnson and Johnson suite!

Let’s Talk Self – Esteem!

When I embraced the idea of sharing an amazing initiative by Dove™’, which I will be sharing with you later in this post, I found myself deeply immersed in thoughts as the subject touched old wounds, old teenage wounds in my own life and experiences. I just saw myself talking to my imaginary daughter or one of the teens I teach and sharing tips on beauty and how to keep your self esteem!

I grew up in a family of overweight people on my Dad’s side and early on, I’ve found myself, eating three grilled cheese sandwiches for breakfast, whole boxes of chocolate and more….I reached the overweight point myself and by the age of 12, I was bullied in parties and sometimes in school, always behind my back, because I was one of the cool kids…..still not pretty or skinny enough….I decided to diet by the age of 12 and exercise which did the trick and by age of 16 I was skinny and totally accepted. I knew all along it was all about acceptance, about being called beautiful, but also for me, it was more like, I don’t want to look like my relatives, don’t want to be obese, I want to be healthy and feel comfortable in my skin.

Life turned around and I had an unplanned pregnancy which lead me to 150+ pounds by the age of 21, bringing the battle back to square one! I dieted and lost all the weight and more and kept it off for 20 years until I married and got pregnant with my second son. I then put back on all the weight and lost it all over again! At 43, I found myself in a stressful time last year and put on some of the weight I had lost, which I am still struggling to lose….but the important thing about my battles and the fact that my genes tell me I need to diet for life is that I am doing it to feel good, to feel comfortable and not just to be accepted anymore, not because I owe this to anybody like it was in the beginning…this kind of battle, brings life-long results and if I had a daughter or was having this conversation with one of my students, this is the message that I would like to convey to them! It’s all about being happy in your own skin!

Here is me, at the age of 43!



After sharing my personal journey, I wanted to share these amazing facts:


1.  Anxiety about looks begins at an early age and holds girls back (from reaching their full potential).
RESEARCH: According to Dove global research:


  • 72 percent of girls (ages 10-17) feel tremendous pressure to be beautiful.
  • Only 11 percent of girls (ages 10-17) are comfortable using the word beautiful to describe themselves.
  • When girls feel bad about their looks more than 60 percent globally (age 15 to 17) avoid normal daily activities such as attending school, going to the doctor, or even giving their opinion.


Therefore, I am so excited to share Dove’s initiative where they believe beauty should be a source of confidence, not anxiety and are committed to inspiring all women and girls to reach their full potential and I totally agree with that!


2. Everyone has the opportunity to make a difference in a girl’s self-esteem


  • More than half of girls globally say their mother is their number one female role model (66 percent U.S., 59 percent Canada).
  • A simple act, such as starting a conversation about beauty, can make a world of difference.
  • The Dove Movement for Self-Esteem opens up a world of opportunities for women to make a difference.


3. “Let’s Talk” is the theme of the third annual Dove Self-Esteem Weekend

A kick-off event in New York is set to spark a national conversation.


  • We will join girls from Dove partner organizations Girl Scouts of the U.S.A, Girls Inc, and Boys & Girls Clubs in a silent march to Times Square.
  • Dove will unveil a “Let’s Talk” designated area where women and girls can pull up a seat and start the conversation.
  • An electronic billboard will broadcast messages on the importance of building girls’ self-esteem.


I also wanted to share that Dove invites women across the U.S. to participate in the Dove Self-Esteem Weekend, taking place October 5-7 nationwide.


  • We wanted to invite you to join us tomorrow: FB chat with Jeannette Torres-Alvarez,October 4th from 7 -8 pm EST on
  • We also wanted to ask you to check out Dove’s initiative Vive Mejor Hablemos “Let’s Talk” (In Spanish) And also: – Vive Mejor Main Site


This post is compensated and in collaboration with Dove and Latina Bloggers Connect.