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April 2008

March 2008

New Old Paintings :)

We miss my Mom a lot! She is back in Florida now and we are back in our regular routine. She will miss the children so much but fortunately she is in Florida and not in Cuba where it would be so hard for her to travel.
This week will be sooo busy for me but I am ready for it and looking forward to winning the battle with time. I will have to make magic in order to do all the things that I have in my list. On the other hand I am so excited! Bill and I just got a great scanner and I am in heaven because with this new machine I am going to scan hundreds of 35 mm slides that I have with photos of my old work from the nineties. And here you have a little advance of it!

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Two Heads.

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The Secret.

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The Tower.

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The Lesson.

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And this last picture is a more graphic version of The Lesson (the original painting that you see up there) that I created in 2007 for my Etsy store. It is the first time that I make a version of an old piece and it was lots of fun. I would love to paint more, I used to do it everyday in Cuba but back then I didn't have my "kiddies" and my life was all about my art. Now I have to find some balance between art and family. That's life, after you have your children it is not about yourself anymore and this is the biggest challenge that we, as creative people face, but we should never stop doing what we are passionate about! While our children grow our creativity should grow with them!

I wish you a happy Monday and wish me good luck!
Elsita :)


Blank Book Project (Day 15)

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And in our last page you see my Mom, Natalie and I saying SEE YOU IN TEN YEARS to our little book. We decided that in 10 years, when Natalie is fifteen (important age for girls in the latino culture) the three of us are going to spend some special time together in order to remember and celebrate all the experiences that we went through this project. We will take a new picture of the three of us then so we can place it on the blank space that we left specially for it in this page. We are sure that our Blank Book project is going to stay always alive as a family tradition. We will officially give this first book to Natalie in 2018 but then in the future she can make it grow with the family that she will have on her own.
My Mom, Natalie and I are so looking forward to 2018!!!
Please come back in ten years to see the continuation of this project! :o :)

My Mom and I want to thank you all sooo much for staying with us during this experience, sharing this project with you made it even more special!

Thank you sooo much again!
Las Tres Mosqueteras!
Elsita, Margot and Natalie :) :)

(I will be back here on Monday, have a wonderful weekend!)


Blank Book Project (Day 14)

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The theme of our page today is POINTS OF VIEW.
My Mom and I came out with a way to explain Natalie how important is to pay attention to other people's points of view. We told her that every person's point of view is like a little hole on the wall of a huge house. The house is the world and what's inside the house is life. We all see life differently because everyone looks at it from a different perspective (hole). Every hole is located in a different place so it is impossible for all of us to see what's inside the house in the same way. The point of this conversation was to teach Natalie that in order to have a better understanding of life we should learn about what other people can teach us from what they "see" from their own "holes" or points of view.

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As you can imagine this idea is pretty sophisticated for Natalie to understand right now but I am sure that she will appreciate it in the future. So the part that we enjoyed the most about this experience was that after we explained Natalie everything and showed her the little paper house with the holes she said: Oh, I think that what you mean is that the world is like a cheese house and the people are all little mice looking through the holes...is that it? And of course we said: ABSOLUTELY Natalie, you got it! So she inmediately started drawing the little cheese house with mice to illustrate her own idea.

Isn't that wonderful!? Through Natalie's drawing my Mom and I learned that indeed we all see things in a very unique way from our personal points of view and we just loved getting to see Natalie's personal vision of our lesson based on her tender and innocent world.

We are going to miss these kinds of experiences sooo much!
We invite you to come back tomorrow to see our last page and to say good-bye to our little Blank Book project!!!!

Elsita, Margot and Natalie :) :) :)


Blank Book Project (Day 13)

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One of the things that I admire the most about my Mom is her generosity. I grew up seeing her giving so much to other people, that's an important part of her personality. Anytime when she comes to visit us from Florida she brings a whole bag with onions, lemons and anything that she finds over there for a good price. That makes me so happy! Of course there are tons of onions and lemons here in California but the ones that she brings are always special and taste better to me :) I agree with her that giving to other people is one of the most beautiful things to do because it makes you feel good. I am so glad to say that Natalie is just like my Mom. She is always making little drawings for the people that she cares about and when she sees a beautiful flower she wants to get it for me or for her best friend at school or for her teacher. Also when she sees a cute toy she wants to get it for Diego. Natalie is always thinking about giving things to other people.

We dedicated the last page of our book to generosity and we also did a game that it was lots of fun. The idea was to think about all the things that we would do for other people if we had all the power in the world to make it happen right away. The list of things is too long to include here but I can tell you that just thinking about those things and dreaming about making them happen was great. We told Natalie that anyway in real life we don't need to have special powers to be generous because sometimes a little smile, or some nice words can make a big difference in other people's lives.

And here is the quote that we included in our little book for Natalie to treasure:
"We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give".
Winston Churchill.

I would also like to include here one of my favorite quotes by Mother Teresa of Calcutta.:
“We cannot all do great things, but we can do small things with great love.”

Have a great day!
See you tomorrow!
Elsita, Margot and Natalie :) :) :)


Blank Book Project (Day 12)

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Imagine yourself writing three important advices to the woman that you once were based on the experience accumulated over the years. I asked my Mom to do that; I asked her to think about the three most important things that she would like to tell to the young woman that she used to be many years ago. These advices are now special treasures from my Mom to Natalie and they have been included in our little book.

This is the translation of the three advices:
1. Try to be independent in every aspect of your life.
2. Make decisions based on your own resolutions and not based on pleasing other people.
3. Do not set limits for yourself, believe it or not you can always do more than you imagine.

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And I created this little drawing inspired by the idea of Natalie, my Mom and I looking at the past and learning from it.

Have a wonderful day!
And see you tomorrow!
Elsita, Margot and Natalie :) :) :)


Blank Book Project (Day 11)

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Good morning, good morning!!!
We are so excited to show you our last Blank Book page which is all dedicated to nature. And here is what my Mom wrote in the little book this time: Natalie, nature is the most beautiful thing in life. If you learn how to enjoy it and take care of it you will be a very happy person.
Grandma Margot.

My Mom is in love with nature. As a little girl she spent an important part of her life in the countryside and all of her best memories come from that time. We spent the last three days up on the mountains and it was wonderful. We had such a beautiful time up there all surrounded by trees and birds!

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These three drawings were born at night in our cabin while the children were sleeping. I created them for our little book while talking with my Mom about so many things. I love having long conversations with her at night when everything is so quiet. We felt like old good friends sharing our thoughts and ideas.

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This is our cabin and as you can see the weather was perfect.

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Natalie and Diego having fun in their favorite place over there.

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Here is a picture of a historical moment! My Mom touching the "snow" for the first time in her whole life. We got to see a little bit of ice left from the last time that snowed up there and my Mom could not believe it. In the picture she looks pretty quiet but the truth is that she was screaming and laughing and saying: THIS IS LIKE A DREAM! I CANNOT BELIEVE IT! I GOT TO SEE THE SNOW!!!!

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Natalie was so impressed by her Grandma's reaction after seeing a little bit of snow for the first time that she later created this little portrait of her with lots of snow balls. Natalie and my Mom are planning to do many things with snow in the future.

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And this is a special photo of Natalie taken by my Mom.

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From the mountains we drove down to the desert and spent hours over there enjoying the amazing landscape.

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My Mom took this picture of us while Diego was playing with some rocks.

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And here is our little man and his rocks. It was so funny! Somehow he thought that the rocks were the blocks that he plays with at home. He spent a long time figuring out how to build a tower with them.

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My Mom and I.

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On our way back to the city we stopped at some beautiful lake to take a brake and relax.

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My Mom and Diego have a great connection, they are great together.

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And with this picture we say good bye!!!
Have a nice Monday!
And see you tomorrow!
Elsita, Margot and Natalie :) :) :)


See You on Monday! :)

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Hello Friday!
Hello friends!
I wanted to let you know that we are going to have three super fun days: today Friday, Saturday and Sunday. I will be back here on Monday with a new report about our Blank Book project and more. We are very excited about our plans for this weekend.

About the picture today:
I decided to take a little Moleskine to Diego's therapies in order to draw silly things while I wait for him. I will be sharing those drawings with you here and in my Flickr portfolio :). There is something really special about drawing silly things just for the fun of it, it is like having my own therapy during Diego's therapies. And in a couple of weeks I will let you know about Diego's progress, you won't believe how many new things he is learning! We are all sooo proud him! I only want to give you a little advance: he learned how to say MY NAME IS DIEGO. Can you believe that????

Have a great Friday, Saturday and Sunday!!!
And see you on Monday!
Elsita :)


Blank Book Project (Day 10)

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Our last Blank Book experience was sooo much fun!
I created three fruit characters representing my Mom, Natalie and Myself and then we made up all kinds of funny stories about them. It was a great game. Of course we ended up eating our creatures and that was the whole point of the game (we wanted to re-enforce a positive idea about fruits in Natalie's imagination). Grandma Margot told Natalie that if we eat our fruits they stay alive forever in our bodies but if we don't do it they end up in the garbage can and that's really sad. Natalie couldn't agree more with her. Of course she later started asking questions like: How is it possible for so many fruits to live in my tummy? We told her that they just become sooo tiny, it is impossible to see them but that way they leave plenty of space for other fruits to come down to tummy town. She thought that this idea was really funny.

Have a great day and see you tomorrow!
Elsita, Margot and Natalie :)



Blank Book Project (Day 9)

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Tiny ghost by Elsita, I made it using a sox that I got a the 99 Cents Store.

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Happy ghost made my Natalie using construction paper and a black pen.

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The Spoon Family :)
This three characters are the product of a Margot-Elsita-Natalie collaboration.

My Mom and I share this idea:
If you're feeling sad try to create something silly with your hands and you will immediately feel better. That's what we did yesterday and it really worked and that's what we wrote about in the little book for Natalie.

We are feeling much better today :)
Our little book is such a wonderful way to put our energy into something positive.
Thank you sooo much for your comments from yesterday, they mean a lot to us.

See you tomorrow :)
Elsita, Margot and Natalie.


Anthony Minghella Passes Away at 54.

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Dear friends,
Today is such a sad day for Bill and I. Anthony Minghella has just passed away at age 54. We are still trying to process such an unexpected news. This man was an amazing Artist, he was a terrific father, husband, son and a wonderful human being. When Bill and I got married in our very low-key ceremony Anthony was one of our 4 friends who attended the event. Bill worked with him as a Producer in two of his most beautiful movies: The Talented Mister Ripley and Cold Mountain. Anthony was the very first Film Director that I had the privilege to met when I first moved to the USA and he had such a big impact in me. He realized that my English was limited, I had a hard time communicating my ideas but he always made me feel so special, he used to call me Wonderful Elsita and he gave me big hugs. During the filming of Cold Mountain in Romania I observed him work for hours and I will never forget how sensitive and positive he was all the time with each member of the crew.

It is really hard to think about the fact that we won't see Anthony anymore. My heart is right now with his family. Today they are experiencing one of the most painful days of their lives. The phone hasn't stopped ringing, so many people cared about him, we are all shocked by the news of his death. I want to dedicate this post to him and say: Wonderful Anthony, thank you so much for everything, you are one of the most special people that I ever met and you will always have an important place in our hearts. WE LOVE YOU.
Elsita and Bill.

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Here is Anthony with his sweet signature smile the day when Bill and I got married.


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Anthony working with Nicole Kidman in one of the locations of Cold Mountain.

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This is Caroline, Anthony's wife who has always been one of his biggest supporters.

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These are Anthony's parents, they appear in the movie Cold Mountain for a second, that's what a sweet son he was. Anthony always found a way to include his parents in each one of his movies. (The girl behind them is me).

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On the right you see Max Minghella (Anthony's son) and Miro all dressed up as young soldiers in one of the sets of Cold Mountain. Max is now a professional Actor, he has appeared in different movies, Anthony was very proud of him.

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I took this photo of Anthony in 2002 and this is the way I want to remember him; positive, energetic and always celebrating life.