Outside of Books: I love Encanto

Hi everyone! I haven’t written an Outside of Books post in a long time because the holidays caught up to me. πŸ˜‘ I’m still working on things for my Etsy shop, but very sparingly. I have no motivation! Also still helping my son with his youtube channel – I try to motivate him but sometimes that’s hard too. He’s finding out that content creators put it a lot of work to make good content.

But the thing that has taken over our life the past two weeks is the movie Encanto! We are obsessed.πŸ˜…

I didn’t have any interest in seeing the movie only because I didn’t know or hear much about it. But then I was on TikTok scrolling and this one song kept popping up…“We Don’t Talk About Bruno”! I heard a snippet of it and was intrigued, plus I love latin music – it’s my favorite kind of music to work out to. I asked my kids if they wanted to watch the movie with me but they seemed lukewarm to the idea. So I started watching it by myself but when the house, Casita, was showing it’s magical powers I called my kids to watch with me, I knew my daughter would love it. My son came in when “We Don’t Talk About Bruno” started and stayed til the end.

We love the story and the soundtrack, it gave me opportunities to talk to my kids, mostly my son about adults and how we have pasts too. Every time I watch the movie, I learn something new, but I just really love how I can relate to a bunch of the family members.

I won’t rank the songs because I love them all. But let’s talk about a few of them:

Surface Pressure | Songwriter: Lin-manuel Miranda | Artist: Jessica Darrow

I love this song, even though I’m not the oldest sibling in my family. I’m the youngest but I was the only one I out my first generation American cousins and my sister to go to a four year college and get a degree. The fact that I wanted to do that, was a big fight. It didn’t help that the college was out of state. I got lecture by my uncles of how wrong it was for me to leave the family! Yet they also pressured me about becoming a doctor (which was not in my plans AT ALL…they just didn’t know that). Here are some lyrics from the song:

“Pressure like a grip, grip, grip and it won’t let go, whoa
Pressure like a tick, tick, tick ’til it’s ready to blow, whoa
Give it to your sister, your sister’s stronger
See if she can hang on a little longer
Who am I if I can’t carry it all?
If I falter

Under the surface
I hide my nerves, and it worsens, I worry something is gonna hurt us
Under the surface
The ship doesn’t swerve as it heard how big the iceberg is
Under the surface
I think about my purpose, can I somehow preserve this?”

These lyrics really hit me now as a mom. I feel the pressure on me at times, pressure I put on myself!πŸ€¦πŸ»β€β™€οΈ

We Don’t Talk About Bruno | Songwriter: Lin-manuel Miranda | Artists: Β Encanto – Cast,Β Rhenzy Feliz,Β Adassa,Β Stephanie Beatriz,Β Mauro Castillo,Β Diane Guerrero,Β Carolina GaitΓ‘n – La GaitaΒ 

I love this song! My kids love it because Bruno is so awkward and funny. He is their favorite character. I love the whole ensemble singing, it reminds me of a musical. But the beat is awesome and I can’t help dance to it. It’s so catchy. Bruno gets a bad rep in the movie but Mirabel finds out he was just misunderstood because of his gift!

“What Else Can I Do? | Songwriter: Lin-manuel Miranda | Artists: Stephanie Beatriz,Β Diane Guerrero

I felt like Isabela as a child, my parents and uncles and aunts wanted me to be so perfect. Mostly my parents though , my dad wouldn’t even let me cut my long hair (it was “feminine”) until he gave up the battle in my freshman year of high school! I chopped my hair off so short the moment he said I could. πŸ˜… It was the combination of perfection and pressures though that made me leave Hawaii to go to college. I needed a break. I love this song – here are some lyrics from it:

“I just made something unexpected
Something sharp
Something new
It’s not symmetrical or perfect
But it’s beautiful
And it’s mine
What else can I do?”

Dos Oruguitas | Songwriter: Lin-manuel Miranda | Artist: SebastiΓ‘n Yatra

The song that makes me cry even though I can’t understand Spanish, I had to look up the english translation and ugh…it’s so good. The lyrics are just so beautiful. This song is all emotion. It’s like a lullaby, my daughter loves it so much, I can hear her singing it even though she doesn’t know Spanish either, I hear her try and it’s so sweet. In this part of the movie, she likes to climb into my lap – she’s 5 and I tell her she and her brother are my oruguitas (little caterpillar). πŸ₯ΊπŸ› But this is the moment in the movie where Mirabel understands and acknowledges what her grandmother went through when she was younger. There is such trauma her grandma lived through, she never got to face it, she kept on going because she was a single mother of three kids and needed to survive for them. 😒 I like to tell my son that adults were young once too and things happen in life to change them sometimes. Hurt people hurt people. I love that Mirabel becomes the catalyst for change in the family…broken but put back together, even better and stronger.❀️

” Two oruguitas
Cocooned and waiting
Each in their own world
What happens after
The rearranging?

And so afraid of change
In a world that never stops changing
So let the walls come down
The world will never stop changing
(Never stop changing)
(Never stop changing)
(Never stop changing)

Ay, mariposas
Don’t you hold on too tight
Both of you know
It’s your time to go
To fly apart, to reunite
Wonders surround you
Just let the walls come down
Don’t look behind you
Fly till you find
Your way toward tomorrow”

All of You | Songwriter: Lin-manuel Miranda | Artists: Β Encanto – Cast,Β Adassa,Β John Leguizamo,Β Maluma,Β Stephanie Beatriz,Β Olga Merediz

Abuela gets acknowledge in Dos Oruguitas and in All of You, Mirabel gets acknowledge. Ugh…my heart! Apologies, acknowledgements…all we want sometimes is just to be seen. Even in a family. I come from a big family of aunts, uncles, cousins…and we lived all together for all of my childhood until I went to middle school. So I didn’t only live in my own little 4 person dysfunctional family…I got to witness all the other dysfunctional families in the house so that we were one huge dysfunctional family! lol…I can laugh now but wow…this movie brought some crazy emotions in me and memories.

“Look at this home
We need a new foundation
It may seem hopeless but we’ll get by just fine
Look at this family, a glowing constellation
So full of stars and everybody wants to shine

But the stars don’t shine, they burn
And the constellations shift
I think it’s time you learn
You’re more than just your gift

And I’m sorry I held on too tight
Just so afraid I’d lose you too
The miracle is not some magic that you’ve got
The miracle is you, not some gift, just you
The miracle is you
All of you, all of you”

I read a comment somewhere said the movie was about generational trauma and healing. And this is it, 100% and as a first-generation American from a family of immigrants, this movie hit me hard. I love how in the end it was about love, hope and repairing something to make it better. I’m so glad my kids love it too – even though I swear this movie is more for adults than children lol.

Have you watched this movie? What did you think of the story and music?

πŸ•― ~ Yolanda


Outside of Books | Etsy Shop Labor Day Sale

Hi everyone! I’ve had a lot of things happening outside of books. For awhile my Etsy shop has been slow – it’s been slow since the pandemic began but that’s okay. When I started my Etsy shop 9 years ago I started with selling macrame bracelets and then I got into hand stamping metal. The five years I did hand stamping metal was really good to me and it really became a busy part-time job for me. Then I had my second child and I decided hammering metal was not the best idea with a newborn around. So I closed my shop for 2 1/2 years and only came back last year because I started doing resin.

Resin is so much fun but wow…it really can depend on weather since you are relying on a chemical to create your products. I live in Hawaii and I need to work outside because the fumes from the resin. I did it indoor, in my laundry room for like 2 months but honestly…the smell of fumes lingered. So, back outside I went – but if the weather is too hot, my resin hardened too fast. If I didn’t cover things well, bugs got stuck in the resin and lint. A lot of my items selling on Etsy are B grades because of all the ways it didn’t turn out good. But it’s so pretty when the final product is cured…you get to play with color and glitter and I just love it. I wish I had the space to do it indoors. πŸ˜”

Right now a hand-stamping customer of mine, bless her heart, just ordered 265 keychains from me. So I have ordered the material and will be doing that in the next 2 weeks. With the holidays coming, I’ll be adding more hand-stamped items to my shop, including ornaments. And with that said, I have a Labor Day sale happening this weekend at my Etsy shop! 😬

Here are some things I still have in my shop:

Click on the photo to go to my shopping site!
Click on the photo to go to my shopping site!
Click on photo to go to my shopping site!

There are a few bigger pieces too but these are some of the cute keychains that I have in my shop right now. I’m going to do some resin next week, as long as the weather cooperates with me and try to add more phone grips.

I’ll be adding more hand stamped keychains as well and hopefully bookmarks soon!

Thanks for reading and let me know what you like to do outside of reading and obsessing over books. πŸ˜€ ~ Yolanda

Outside of Books | YouTube Mom | 8/21/21

I let my son have a gaming youtube channel this summer. He’s been asking for five years now and he’s been learning the ins and outs of screen recording on his ipad or using a capture card for his nintendo switch – but he hates editing. So he is doing the editing? Me. πŸ˜‚ And I haven’t used iMovie (I have a MacBook) in forever. It’s been a learning experience for me and I’m finally getting the hang of it…sort of. Also I’ve learned to use youtube for their audio library and uploading, etc…see I learn so much being a stay at home mom!

Outside of his gaming videos he and his sister have started making Pikmin videos. What are Pikmin you ask? It’s these creatures:

My kids collection of Pikmin

They are from a Nintendo game called PIKMIN and from what I learned from my son (since I only played the game with him a handful of times)…they are flower creatures. They come from the ground, which is kind of cute but they all have a different elemental power. Now as you can see from this collection, some are store bough plushies (those are the more durable looking ones) and the rest – well…I sewed them 🀣 with left over fabric (old tshirts) or felt. It was a lot of work…and now that we have a puppy – he loves them too. As you can see, Pink Pikmin has not faired well at all…and some eyes have gone missing even. 😭

They use my cell phone to film the videos. I did the first couple “takes” and taught them how to prop the phone etc…so at least now they can set it up and shoot a video without me directing them. Oh yes…I’m director, co-producer, tantrum calmer (for his sister who wants to be included), brainstormer mediator and editor….oh and social media coordinator or whatever title that is – I post the videos to Facebook so Nana in Philadelphia can watch them and whoever else. It’s exhausting but my kids and I feel so accomplished when we actually finish an “episode”.

According to my son, there are 2 series he’s making – 1st one is called The Pikmin Quests ~ where there is some storyline in my son’s head (yeah there is NO scriptwriting in this process lol)…there is danger, there is drama, there are plushy fights…you get it.

Here are the first two episodes:

And then he wanted a 2nd series where the Pikmin just go around our house and neighborhood and have fun. πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™€οΈ Here is the first video for that series:

So obviously, I can’t already see things on here that bug me – like the first 2 videos I saved at different sizes I think. I couldn’t remember what settings I used for the first video like fonts for the title etc…so now I’m writing notes down in a notebook when I create these things – like song titles, fonts, and to remember to film in landscape mode instead of using my phone upright! πŸ€¦πŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸ€·πŸ»β€β™€οΈ

Anyway that was my life outside of books this past weekend! The videos were filmed weeks ago…but I finally sat my booty down to edit all the clips and make into a “video”. It’s just been so busy with my son back in school, entertaining my daughter who is not in school and a puppy who wants to be outside all the time and it’s so HOT. πŸ₯΅

Leave me any tips below if you are a youtuber and make videos! Stay safe and thanks for reading!

❀️ ~ Yolanda

Dog Mom – Atlas Chronicles | Outside of Books | 8/2/21

Hi friends! So outside of books I’m not only a mom of humans, I’m a mommy of an almost 9 month old puppy named Atlas. I feel like we’ve had him forever. We’ve had dogs before but my kids were really young when we had them and they had passed away. I feel like Atlas is the dog that will be remembered during their childhood and watching them bond is the sweetest thing ever.

Atlas is a mixed breed, supposedly a dachsund mix…but he is all terrier! He looks like the twin of a dog I had in my 20’s. So definitely a terrier, not sure what kind though. He is the cuddliest boy.

The first day we got him πŸ₯° He was 2 months old!

There was a moment when I thought the kids wouldn’t bond with him because he had razor sharp puppy teeth. My son was afraid of his teeth and puppy energy (he had the zoomies for a good 2 months!!). My daughter didn’t care if his teeth got her but I minded a lot so I had to train my kids and Atlas at the same time, one not to bite and the others to pick up his signals and to train him! It was a challenge…I almost regretted having a puppy. 😫😭 I had raised two puppies but that was before I had children so it was a new venture for me for sure.

With a lot of consistency in keeping his schedule, training, playing and more training…he is pretty much potty trained (if we leave the house sometimes he can’t hold it when he hears our car pull up in the garage). He is so cuddly and always wants affection. He is sort of obsessed with my parents, his grandparents who come over once a week to my house – oh his excitement when he sees them. It’s a little bit uncontrollable lol…but we are working on that. I’d say neutering him and his adult teeth finally coming in really calmed his energy down.

He has a favorite pair of fuzzy socks that belonged to my son – but he carries them in his mouth and whines every morning and drops them in the lap of my kids. It’s so sweet and they thank him for the socks. He also has one favorite squeaky bone toy he plays fetch with outside. I’ve tried different toys but the bone is his favorite, so yes I had to hunt for a pack of it on Amazon!

Atlas and my daughter are like puppies together! They are the youngest in our family and have quite a bond. She never feared him even in his wild early puppy stage when he was learning. Now she can’t even pick him up (we had him when he was 3 lbs haha…he’s now much heaver) but that’s okay, he flops down into her lap constantly.

As for my son, I had my son start doing his lunch and dinner feedings and taking him outside to potty. I told him when he stays consistent with his routine they will bond and sure enough – now he isn’t afraid of his teeth. Now I catch the two of them playing fetch outside together without adult supervision. I’ve found Atlas in his bed a couple times cuddled up next to my son and it makes me so happy.

Atlas was the perfect fit for our family and he has really grown into a loving, affectionate dog. We are still working on socializing him (he gets afraid of other dogs – especially big ones) but he’s much more curious on his walks so that’s good. I can’t believe he’s not even a year old yet, it feels like we’ve had him forever!

Do you have any pets? Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading. 😘 ~ Yolanda

Stickers with Procreate and Cricut | Outside of Books | 7/26/21

My kids love drawing with the Procreate app. I actually got it for myself and didn’t do much with it but I did have many grand plans, as crafters often do. But it wasn’t until my four year old daughter became obsessed with it that I took another look at it. She loves the app and because of her I learned to do more things with it…like make stickers!

Again, youtube tutorials were my teachers in this project. There are tons of videos on how to draw on procreate then turn them into stickers with a Cricut. Here’s what I made…

My pink Cricut

Here are some of the supplies I used to make the stickers – sticker paper (photo on the left) that I bought at Target. I did buy a bulk pack from Amazon (not pictured), a different sticker paper brand but the quality of the paper feels thinner.

The self-adhesive laminating sheets I bought on Amazon and it’s used to make the stickers waterproof, it gives it that shiny finish.

Here is what I made haha – they aren’t the greatest. I haven’t drawn anything since my college art classes almost 20+ years ago! But my daughter loves all the rainbows I made. I’ve been in a rainbow moon lately and I don’t know why. What will I be using these for? My Etsy shop – I like to add little free gifts for customers, so these would make good ones to insert in the package. 😊

Are any of you crafters into making stickers? What do you make with your Cricut?

😘 ~ Yolanda

Van Gogh Immersive | Outside of Books | 7/21/21

On Sunday, my family – along with my sister, went to the Van Gogh Immersive Exhibit. Vincent Van Gogh is my favorite artist. His paintings always evoked the strongest feelings in me – I like how he layered paint and how his moods were expressed in his paintings. He dealt with a lot of mental health issues and yes he eventually cut part of his ear in an episode but I think that’s why I love his work. His emotions are all there on his canvas and his letters.

I thought my kids would enjoy the experience because it’s like a moving art show instead of a canvas for them to stand there and look at. Here are some photos from our experience.

The first part of the Immersive event are these quotes from letters Vincent wrote to his brother Theo. I’m so happy he had Theo.

Since I was with my kids, they wanted to get to the main room…but first we walked through this room called the waterfall, I think. It’s where the images basically fall on a black backdrop and dark lighting.

Do you see Van Gogh’s face?

And then we walked down a hallway…my daughter and sister went ahead of us, this was like a mini date day for the two of them. My daughter loves her Aunt and my sister adores her as equally…she has only two older boys, so my little girl…we share HAHA. πŸ₯°

Walking with my son to the main room. ❀️

The main room is where the 35 minute “show” is held. There were some people standing around, some people sitting on the floor, a few elderly people were smart and brought folding chairs. We found a spot and took a seat – we didn’t see it from the beginning, not sure what part we came in because it plays on loop.

I’ve been real lucky to see actual Van Gogh paintings at the different museums I’ve visited over the years. During our European honeymoon we even got to visit the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, it was a dream come true for me. The only thing that seems out of my reach is seeing Starry Night in person! When I went to MoMA in NYC back in 2009, it was on loan to a museum in Paris. I was oh so sad…because it’s my favorite of his paintings.

This immersive experience with the music playing and the images moving was really amazing to me. I could have stayed there for hours just sitting there. I wish museums would have an immersive rooms like this, I’d probably stayed there awhile.

My daughter was definitely feeling the experience, she danced when the music played. She’s four and she told me she loves Starry Night too. β™₯️ It’s the swirls around the stars and in the immersive experience it kept swirling and moving. My son enjoyed it but he got freaked out when the self portrait eyes blinked HAHA.

The tickets were pricey and I like I said I wish I could have stayed longer, but the kids would not have want to linger forever there. My daughter told me she wanted more rooms to visit. Yes, that would be nice too actually. My sister and I agreed it would have been amazing to have cafe chairs to sit on or even benches. And maybe a drink in hand, haha…both of us said we would have liked to just sit and linger and stare at the images with the music playing. It’s really beautiful.

She’s feeling the moment!

I really should put her back in ballet…πŸ˜…

I enjoyed it a lot and glad I could show my kids my favorite artist. My son learned a bit about how Van Gogh’s mental illness helped shaped his creations. The color of his work depicted his moods and maybe that’s why I love them so much – it makes me feel something – I always said I liked how much paint he put on the canvas, like it looks so heavy with paint, and I can just imagine him painting with passion. His letters to his brother are so honest about his despair and also that he still had hope…especially when he looked at the stars.

Ahh…the dreamer in me just vibes with him. It was worth going to the show just to watch my daughter dance to the music and images…it made my heart overflow with joy. πŸ₯°

Thanks for reading! ~ Yolanda

Summer Beach Days | Outside of Books | 7/12/21

We are in mid-July and that means my son starts 3rd grade in a little less than 3 weeks. WHAT?! Where did the summer go? I can’t believe he starts school again and this time full time, in class. I already did his school shopping, which was easier than previous years since I had so many things left over from 2020 – the home school year because of the pandemic.

Anyway, summer has gone by fast but I’m happy that I got to bring the kids to the beach and to the pool a lot in the past month and a half. So enjoy some of my beach day pics!

Ko Olina Lagoons

This is one of my favorite places to take the kids on the west side of Oahu (Hawaii island that we live on) – the water is so calm, the only thing is you have to get there early because parking is scarce. I’m an early morning person, so are my kids, so we always manage to get parking there but we leave the house at 7:30am to get that parking. There are 4 lagoons but 3 of them are connected to major hotels (Disney Aulani, Four Seasons, Marriott). The 4th lagoon is where most people who want public access go because it has the most parking, but like I said, get there early!

Ko Olina Lagoons | June 2021
Do you spot the black crab on the rock? | Ko Olina Lagoons
Beach days…

Kapilina Beach Homes – Iroquois Point Beach

This was the first time we ventured to this beach. It’s on private property, a housing community called Kapilina Beach Homes, so you have to enter through a gate, show license/registration etc…and get a parking pass. You can’t use their beach chairs or cabanas and parking is in a designated spot or you will get towed. But that’s okay, I understand it’s for the residents and we were guests so that’s a definitely a perk for them! And there was barely anyone on the beach – I think there was only one other family in the spot we were at! That was nice!

The water was a little choppy, it had much more waves than the lagoons I like to take the kids since it’s not blocked off by rocks but open to the ocean – that’s okay because my son loves it. And there were crabs running all over the place, so I taught my kids how to catch the baby crabs and then let them go. It made me feel like a kid again, catching the crabs and it was so sweet watching my kids do it and they were so gentle with them.

It would’ve been nice to use the cabanas because it was crazy hot that day we went and no shade! I didn’t think to bring an umbrella. Next time we go, I’ll bring the umbrella. Also the beach faces Honolulu, so you can watch planes landing at the airport which was an interesting site to see.

Summer 2021
Diamond Head in the distance – that’s where Waikiki and most of the tourists are
Sunny day on Oahu
A nice, quiet morning at the beach
Some of the cabanas that we couldn’t use lol…:( can you imagine living in this neighborhood though? You can just walk to the beach!
The baby crab was super fast and I couldn’t get a video of it!

We live really close by to this area and I’m surprised we only ventured out to this beach this summer. I’ve been in this area for about 10 years now! I’m originally a townie πŸ˜… a Honolulu city girl, but now we live in a development area that was supposed to have a lagoon area we could walk to also…but the plans keep changing which is a bummer. πŸ˜’ And now they are building an artificial wave maker/surf place in our area…hmmm…not sure how THAT is going to pan out. Is it for locals? Tourists? Not sure…We live in Hawaii, where natural waves are all around us…will people want to pay to surf waves? Maybe…I mean water parks are popular even here in Hawaii – okay we have like ONE water park. Maybe people can practice surfing on fake waves first? I don’t surf so I don’t know. The only thing I really like to do at the beach is sit in the shallow end and chill…lol…that’s how I enjoy the beach!πŸβ˜€οΈβ›± Of course I build sandcastles with the kids and look for shells, etc…but yes I’m more of a chill beach goer than a sporty one.

Anyway, we haven’t ventured to North Shore or South Shore beaches this summer but that’s okay because the West side beaches are amazing too!

Do you like to go to the beach in the summer? Or lake? Let me know in the comments – I’d love to hear from you. Thanks for reading! 😘 ~ Yolanda

Yarn Rainbow | Outside of Books | 7/5/21

I love crafting – it’s been a part of me for so long. It used to be just a fun hobby until I took the plunge and opened an Etsy shop almost 9 years ago now? It was while I was pregnant with my son (who is turning 9 next month) and I had stopped doing massage therapy because I just couldn’t do it in my 3rd trimester. So I made bracelets and keychains and sold them on Etsy. I’ve done various things over the years but today I just wanted to show you my yarn rainbows that I made last week.

It’s been so hot to do resin crafts, because I work outside which isn’t ideal but the fumes can be a little much, so that’s why I work outdoors. But living in Hawaii means it’s warm and humid which makes my resin harden way too fast. I have to work fast and it’s stressful so I’m going to hold off on that until the weather cools down.

I was looking up some crafts I could do that require minimal supplies and these rainbows made me feel happy so I wanted to try and make them. I looked through a few DIY videos on youtube and some pins on Pinterest to learn how to make them.

The first three rainbows I made were okay but the technique of hot gluing the layers together was not working for me. Maybe my glue gun stick is old? It left a mess and the layers wouldn’t stick together! πŸ€¦πŸ»β€β™€οΈ So instead I sewed each layer together with yarn. It’s holding together so far! I bought a new hot glue gun and I’ll glue the knots on the back from the sewing. That means yes, the front side is way nicer than the back side haha, but I still think they are cute!

I found it relaxing to make them once I got the hang of it.

Are you a crafter? What kind of arts and craft do you like to dabble in?

🌈 ~ Yolanda

Mom of Gamers | Outside of Books | 6/28/21

Are you a gamer?

I’ll tell you what I play currently – Animal Crossing Pocket Camp, My Singing Monsters and rarely now, Animal Crossing New Horizons.

Animal Crossing New Horizons was something I bought during 2020 when the pandemic was ramping up. Those were long, anxiety filled days and I played Animal Crossing on my son’s Nintendo Switch until my husband got me a Switch Lite for Mother’s Day. That and Tetris are the only games I played on my Switch Lite.

Honestly, I haven’t played New Horizons in months and I thought it was funny when my character came out today with messy hair! I know my house has roaches I have to stomp on! 🀣 Do you play New Horizons? Let’s be friends! (though you may hardly ever see me on there lol)

Here’s my FRIEND CODE: SW-5849-0636-2972 πŸ’•

One reason I haven’t been on my Switch is because my daughter found my old Animal Crossing Pocket Camp app – I started that when I was pregnant with her 4 years ago then stopped when I had my Switch. But now it’s easier for me to pick up my ipad (because I’m always reading on it) and playing Pocket Camp since the app is right in front of me.

I usually play it after dinner and playing with our dog…it’s SO relaxing. I started playing it again because my daughter plays it too on her ipad and she wanted me to send her “gifts” so she could get fortune cookies. πŸ˜… I’ve been on it daily lately – so if you wanna be friends, find me, my name is AtlasMom (our dog’s name is Atlas)! I’m always sending out gifts. πŸ˜„

The other game my son coerced me into playing is My Singing Monsters. It was a game I started right after my daughter was born and you know newborn life is “team no sleep” life…so in between feedings, changings, cleaning, I was either playing games or reading. Those days were rough! My son wanted this app and I thought it was cute, he was 5 years old at the time so I played it and then eventually I stopped and he took over my account. Anyway he is SO far ahead in the game and has so many monsters. He begged me to start another account lately so I could send him “keys”, join his “tribe” and light his torches. Of course my daughter who is 4, wanted the game also so yes…my username on there is Momster. Fitting right? Do you play My Singing Monsters?

Invite me! Here’s my FRIEND CODE: 98368921KH

On occasion my son asks me to play Mario Party with him and I’ll ask him to do Just Dance with me so I can get some cardio in haha. I helped him finish a few games when he first got the Switch and wasn’t very good at gaming but now, he teaches me things! I also used to be obsessed with Splatoon 2 for awhile. I will say gaming helped me get through my daughter’s newborn to 1 year old stage. I could escape a little (because you can’t really escape being a mom lol) and it really helped.

My Switch Lite now is slowly morphing into my being daughter’s switch lite – she takes it and plays Miitopia on it! She can’t even really read yet. And she only plays that game because her brother plays it…she is definitely a gamer girl in the making.

Another part of my gaming life is helping my son with his youtube channel My son has said he wanted to be a youtuber since he was 4 years old – he still insists he will be a youtuber so I finally allowed him to start his own youtube channel called Eligamer808 – yes I’m totally promoting it for him so please, go give it some views! πŸ˜†

So I wanted him to learn about being a content creator and how it’s not super easy just starting a channel and becoming successful. He has been making videos, long ones are Miitopia gameplay videos – he speaks in it just as if he’s streaming, editing though…that’s still me and I do the minimal cutting at the beginning and end because I have no time, usually my daughter wants my attention at the same time.

He is learning editing is a process and one he doesn’t have much patience for yet. πŸ€¦πŸ»β€β™€οΈ He’s turning 9 years old soon…so yeah…he’s learning patience lol.

The shorter videos are My Singing Monsters or Roblox videos which he has been learning to edit on his iMovie app. And hello, I’m not a pro at this either so I’m learning alongside him. It’s definitely a bonding moment, lots of teaching moments, lots of patience building…and many frustrated moments but I like that he’s getting an idea of how creating content is work!

I did ask him what he felt about having his own channel so far – he said at times he feels like he has no good ideas for the next video and I said yes, that happens a lot as a content creator or just as a creative (me…always wanting to create). But he said he loves having a channel because he feels proud when he gets a new subscriber and I had an “awwwww” kind of moment. I’m excited to see how his channel evolves over time.

Of course now his sister wants her own channel! πŸ€¦πŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸ˜…

Anyway, that’s it for now – thanks for reading and getting to know a little bit of my life, outside of books. πŸ’•~Yolanda