All About Me Series: Self-Love

Me at the beach (center left), my parents (bottom center), and my brother in bottom right with my mom.

August 2, 2020

Congratulations! You have made it to August. Today I would like to tell you a little about myself. They say ‘…a picture is worth a thousand words,’ thus I am including a few photos.

“This saying was invented by an advertising executive, Fred R. Barnard. To promote his agency’s ads he took out an ad in Printer’s Ink in 1921 with the headline ‘One Look Is Worth a Thousand Words”‘and attributed it to an ancient Japanese philosopher”. ›

I hope you enjoy this quick look into my journey. Please enjoy!

Havana, Cuba

Havana, Cuba

My journey begins in the island of Cuba. Yet, before I am born there are important events that occur. It is those important events that would influence my life.

What happened in Cuba in the 1960’s?

”The Cuban Revolution was a crucial turning point in U.S.-Cuban relations. … After the revolutionary government nationalized all U.S. property in Cuba in August 1960, the American Eisenhower administration froze all Cuban assets on American soil, severed diplomatic ties and tightened its embargo of Cuba.” Cuban Revolution – Wikipedia

“… Cuba has had a socialist political system since 1959 based on the ’one state – one party” principle.” ›

“On 3 January 1961 the U.S. withdrew diplomatic recognition of the Cuban government and closed the embassy in Havana. Presidential candidate John F. Kennedy believed that Eisenhower’s policy toward Cuba had been mistaken.” › Cuba–United States relations –

“After Cuba lost Soviet subsidies in 1991, malnutrition resulted in an outbreak of diseases. Despite this, the poverty level reported by the government is one of the lowest in the developing world, ranking 6th out of 108 countries, 4th in Latin America and 48th among all countries.” ›

In my opinion, it is important to note that the people are not allowed to leave Cuba. The government rations everything: water, electricity, and food. All the basics, that Americans take for granted, are in very short supply or do not exist in Cuba.

I was born in Havana, Cuba (in 1964). I lived there until I was seven years old. At that time, Cuba was ruled by the dictator Fidel Castro. In 1971, my family and I were finally allowed to permanently leave Cuba. We wanted to escape communism. We were not allowed to take any belongings when we left. From Cuba we went to Spain.

How did Spain become a dictatorship? (According to, October 14, 2019)

In “1939- General Francisco Franco leads the Nationalists to victory in the Civil War. More than 350,000 Spaniards died in the fighting, and Franco purges all remaining Republicans.”

How do relations with Spain begin to improve? (According to October 14, 2019)

“…1950s – As the Cold War deepens the US gradually improves relations with Spain, extending loans in return for military bases. “

“…1950s – As the Cold War deepens the US gradually improves relations with Spain, extending loans in return for military bases. “

“Spain is admitted to the UN in 1955 and the World Bank in 1958, and other European countries open up to the Franco government.”

“…1975 November – Franco dies, and is succeeded as head of state by King Juan Carlos. Spain makes transition from dictatorship to democracy, and withdraws from the Spanish Sahara, ending its colonial empire.”

”…1977 June – First free elections in four decades. Ex-Francoist Adolfo Suárez’s Union of the Democratic Centre manages a relatively smooth transition to a stable democracy.“

Bullfight, Spain

In 1971, my family and I arrived as refugees in Madrid, Spain. I attended a private Catholic elementary school on a scholarship. I received my First Communion in Spain. While living in Spain, we vacationed in Tenerife, Canary Islands There I rode a camel. After two years, we left Spain and headed to America.

The center colored photo was taken when we first arrived in the United States. The black and white photos are taken in Cuba.

We arrived in the United States as legal immigrants in 1974. I attended public elementary school, and learned English in six months. I wanted to become a teacher since I was seven years old. I was able to follow my dream in America.

UCR Graduation, and some photos of my years of teaching

Photos of some of my early years as a teacher.

I attended the University of California Riverside, and graduated with two degrees: one in Spanish, and one in Liberal Arts/Education. Upon completing college, I qualified for a paid internship, as a Bilingual teacher. I obtained my dream job as a kindergarten teacher!. Eventually, I decided to teach second grade, and continued teaching it for the next eighteen years.

I loved teaching! I would have continued to teach for the rest of my life if it had not been for my health. I became very ill, and was diagnosed with a rare form of Lupus. I had to have chemotherapy for a year to save my life. I was declared permanently disabled, and I had to stop teaching.

Currently, I am a lifestyle blogger. I enjoy many different interests, or hobbies: arts & crafts, painting, cooking, photography, sewing, and crochet. Although I have many interests, my main focus is my family. I also cherish my friendships. I believe in leading a healthy lifestyle,. I focus on collecting memories, not things. I love life each and every day. I am living my best life!

I have included three bonus photos below. The first is a photo of me as a baby in Cuba. The second is a photo of me receiving my First Communion in Spain. The third is a current photo of me as it appeared in one of my previous blogs.

Thank you so much for allowing me to share a. small portion of my journey!

Please take a minute to share in the comments about something that is uniquely about you, and your journey. Thank you for sharing!

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