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Black Velvet
December 16, 2012 – 3:09 pm | 17 Comments

Childhood memories are vivid, almost indescribable in their detail, and impossible to forget. A Christmas memory I have is that of a black velvet dress  a family friend gave to me for my seventh Christmas.
The …

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Snagged by Abuelita or Careful with the Viejas

Submitted by on January 14, 2010 – 6:00 am8 Comments

My grandmother, Mama, and me on her 90th Birthday.

My grandmother, a force not to be messed with, did not allow us to speak English inside her house. She wanted us to be bilingual and always said: “En la escuela ingles. En mi casa, español!”

If she caught us speaking English, she kicked us outside. So, when it is 95-degrees in Miami — and there isn’t a tree to be found for shade — you definitely do what she says and you habla habla el Spanish.  Until you’re snotty-nosed and 14, anyway.

That’s when I was on the phone with a friend, speaking English, and discovered my Mama really did understand English, even if she didn’t speak it. The truth is, what a fool was I to believe that after 20 years in the United States, and a steady diet of The Price is Right, she would be monolingual?

This video post is a recount of the story, the moment my grandmother snagged me talking about her in English. (If you can’t see the video, click the headline.)

Be sure to read our post today by Señora López, who tells the tale of speaking about her non-English-knowing Suegra.

How long do we think before La Señora gets snagged?

I’m telling you, careful with the viejas.

They know stuff.

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