l i b é l u l a

blogging about: my life as a new mum, living in NYC, wishing for things I can’t afford, borrowing from NYPL, where to get the best deals in town, sharing resources and other cool stuff, wanting to make time to make things, listening to NPR, quilting, sewing, cooking, singing, whistling, cycling, watching films, being hooked to the web and loving my family…

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Me fui

It's official, I'm moving, in fact, I moved out already! I am now hosting this blog at mami delux....I do hope you guys come over and visit.... although I am now blogging in espanich!.


Friday, February 17, 2006

Ray Barretto dies at 76

I just read the sad news that Ray Barretto had died earlier on today.... It is very sad to learn about the death of the great musicians I grew up listening to and idolizing.... Pete Rodriguez, Tito Puente, Celia Cruz and now Ray Barretto....

Monday, February 06, 2006

tips on how to reduce your phone bill

Why people are still paying so much money for their national long distance calls does not cease to surprise me. Why people stick to their Verizon service even if they have broadband puzzles me even more….. I guess it’s either they do not feel safe having a phone line that depends on their internet connection or they just do not know how badly they are being ripped off… not only by Verizon but by most phone companies…I mean let’s face it, if you live in NYC and you are terrified of your bill because you just can’t get off the phone to your mum in Jersey, Florida, Boston or wherever she lives, there is something you need to now fast and that is – THERE IS NO NEED TO BE AFRAID OF YOUR PHONE BILL.

Even if your friends and/or family live in Europe you should not be paying more that $30 to $50 dollars a month. If you have broadband at home you will most certainly get a better deal, but if you don’t you should still check other companies like Z-tel and IDT. I know Verizon are offering better rates now but it is always worth checking what the competition has to offer….

Here are the options, I hope you find one that suits you and that you switch immediately - :)

If you use your DSL through Verizon you should check the cost of switching to broadband and using any Voice Over IP as your phone service. If you do your maths you will find that it can be much cheaper.

We live in JC/NJ therefore I do not have much of an option in selecting our Internet provider as Comcast monopolizes the market. If you have more choices you should definitely check out the rates of other cable companies and see which option suits you best …. This can be a complex task because most people get deals out of combining their TV and internet bills. We do not have TV so I cannot be of help here… what I can tell you is which companies provide phone services over the web and then you can decide which works best for you. And yes! all of the following companies allow you to transfer your current number….. anyway, here we go:

Sunrocket: the cheapest service out there IF you enroll for the whole year. Paying $199 a year (including taxes) a total of $17 dollars a month Sunrocket offers: unlimited calling to US, Canada & Puerto Rico, up to 100 free international minutes each month, plus other free features like caller ID, call waiting and 3-way calling, etc.

They also offer a $9.95 (month-including taxes) plan that allows you: 200 minutes a month to anywhere in the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico and 41 International Destinations, unlimited free calls to other SunRocket users, over a dozen built-in calling features, including Caller ID and Call Waiting

The only thing about Sunrocket is that you have to sign a contract for one year minimum and I sometimes feel a bit apprehensive of locking myself into deals….

Vonage: Provide a good service for home and small businesses. For $24.99 a month (plus tax) you get unlimited calls anywhere in the US plus other free features like caller ID, call waiting and 3-way calling, etc.

For small businesses they offer a $49.99 (plus tax) plan that includes all the features of the $24.99 plan plus a fax line. One cool thing about Vonage and VOIP is that you can choose the area code for your new number, and so if you live out of state but your business is located here you can still choose to have a NY number.

Vonage also offers a $14.99 plan that includes all the common features such as call waiting, call forwarding etc, allowing you 500 minutes to call anywhere in the US, Canada & Puerto Rico.

Lingo: If you have family and friends in the UK, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark, Switzerland, Sweden, Finland, Austria, Luxembourg, Vatican City, Norway, Portugal, and Spain Lingo could be the thing for you as their $19.95 plan includes not only unlimited calls to the US, Canada & Puerto Rico but also to all the countries mentioned above.

For $29.95 Lingo offers an unlimited plan to call Mexico, for $34.95 one to call Asia, and for $49.95 unlimited international calls to Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Chile, China, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Greece, Guam, Hong Kong, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico (Including Mobile), the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, San Marino, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and Vatican City (?).**Calls to international mobile are not included in any of Lingo’s plan (except when calling Mexico under the $49.95 plan).

I hope you folks find this helpful...and by all means, please let me know if you have found better deals out there....

Saturday, February 04, 2006


I am considering the possibility of moving this blog to wordpress.... I opened our "Films in Van Vorst" official blog there and I liked the way one can categorize each entry... i did not like the way that images or photos are uploaded though...

out of order

is blogger down??
I have not been able to enter my site or any other blog in the past few days//
what's up?

Friday, January 27, 2006

With a little help from her friends

I found out this week that a dear friend of mine was facing cancer again. She underwent surgery about a year ago, three months after she gave birth to her first son Leif. My heart goes out to her and I want to do as much as I can to help her raise funds for her treatment.

If you are in or around NYC tomorrow and you feel like some funky live music please join us:

'With a Little Help from My Friends, A benefit for Valentina Akerman's Cancer Treatment'

When: THIS Saturday Jan 28th, 8PM
What: A great night with a big line up of Bands and DJs featuring Artanker Convoy, Blood on the Wall, The Hong Kong, The Jewish, A magical act by Marco the Magician DJs Silkpurse, Reaganomics, Black OPs, Corduroy, JJJ and much more.
Where: Supreme Trading in Williamsburg 213 N. 8th St. 718-599-4224
Who: you and everyone you know to help raise money for Valentina Akerman's cancer treatment

Come out and celebrate LIFE!

pump up the jam!

bandida 1
Originally uploaded by lovelibelula.
Rosa had her first crawl on Wednesday the 25th. I kept wanting to blog about this but got busy trying sort out "Films in Van Vorst" things... She then proceeded to wiggled her butt to the sounds of her favourite Canticuentos. We also learned that she is pulling herself up by holding on to the bars of her crib and amusing herself with her own reflection in our bedroom mirror… She is growing up so quickly…… ;)

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

talking about films....

I did a search on google blogsearch (my new favorite thing) and I found several links to the blogsopt blog of a fellow blogger who attended last year's film series.... I am hyped. (my fellow blogger also called my J "our local hero".. :)

Monday, January 23, 2006

Films in Van Vorst

We are about to start the fundraising for this year’s summer film series. We need to submit a potential list of films to the city by the end of February so they can publish the event in their Summer Cultural Calendar.

So, here is the deal, how about you people who come and read the blog and never dare post a comment, help me figure out which films we should run….

We have eight screenings planned and the criteria to select them is that they have to be apt for all audiences (no sex, durgs or explicit violence)……. I would love to have a couple of classics, a western, and one kiddies friendly movie….. Please bare in mind that these are free open air film screenings in our community park, therefore the films should appeal to the vast majority of people…. …

My list of potential films goes as follows (it's 6 films too long….)

I. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975)
II. High Noon (1952)
III. Cabaret (1974)
IV. Raising Arizona (1987)
V. L.A. Confidential (1997) (can’t remember if sex is explicit here??)
VI. All About Eve (1950)
VII. Big Fish (2003)
VIII. The Searchers (1956)
IX. Twelve Monkeys (1995)
X. Rushmore (1998)
XI. Arizona Dream (1993)
XII. The Man Without a Past (2002)
XIII. Singin' in the Rain (1952)
XIV. High and Low (1963)

My BIG list goes as follows:

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975)
12 Angry Men (1957)
The Third Man (1949)
Singin' in the Rain (1952)
All About Eve (1950)
Touch of Evil (1958)
High Noon (1952)
North by Northwest (1959)
Notti di Cabiria, Le (1957)
Kind Hearts and Coronets (1949)
The Magnificent Seven (1969)
The Searchers (1956)
The Apartment (1960)
Bullit (1968)
Johnny Guitar (1954)
Donnie Brasco (1997)
Spirit of the Beehive (1973)
Rear Window (1954)
Cabaret (1974)
The Usual Suspects (1995)
Spirited Away (2001)
Barton Fink (1991)
Raising Arizona (1987)
Oh Brother Where Art Thou? (2000)
L.A. Confidential (1997)
The Wizard of Oz (1939)
Jaws (1975)
Blade Runner (1982)
The Sixth Sense (1999)
Annie Hall (1977)
Big Fish (2003)
The Straight Story (1999)
Monsters, Inc. (2001)
Twelve Monkeys (1995)
The Big Lebowski (1998)
Almost Famous (2000)
Lost in Translation (2003)
This Is Spinal Tap (1984)
Babettes Feast (1987)
Barfly (1987)
The Butcher Boy (1997)
King of Comedy (1983)
The Purple Rose of Cairo
Rushmore (1998)
The way we were (1973)
What’s eating Gilbert Grape (1993)
Arizona Dream (1993)
The Man Without a Past (2002)
Raising Victor Vargas (2002)
Romeo + Juliet (1996)

Please do post your choices..

Saturday, January 21, 2006

house cleaning

When I was younger I used to read loads….sooo much more than I do know… I did not have a baby then and I did not have broadband either…... while I read I used to keep a diary where I wrote quotes that I liked, the meaning of new words and/or moments that touched me…. today, while cleaning up, I came across one of those journals and I found a quote that moved me, specially considering how fast my baby is growing….. the quote is from “The Sheltering Sky” - Paul Bowles.

Because we don’t know when we will die, we get to think of life as an inexhaustible well. Yet everything happens only a certain number of times, and a very small number really. How many more times will you remember a certain afternoon of your childhood, some afternoon that is so deeply part of your being that you can’t conceive your life without it. Perhaps four or five times more, perhaps not even that.
How many more times will you watch the full moon rise? Perhaps twenty. And yet it all seems limitless.

Friday, January 20, 2006

love actually

playa, brisa y mar
Originally uploaded by rosa bella coco coffey.

It's official.... my mother has fallen in love with my daughter... I hear them play every morning while I try and get some sleep past 6AM. It melts me to hear them. I wish we had this baby sitter nearer …. She won’t be easily replaced….

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Google Blog Search

Maybe you guys all new about this, but I didn't....I discovered that Google has a new search engine that searches for key words in all blogs……in simpler words: a blog search.

Isn’t that amazing??? I mean, yesterday J told me that The Onion had a headline that read “ Sean Penn wants to know what asshole stole seanpenn@gmail.com” - how could SP not be pissed off....Google is GOD and having your name in gmail is like having a safe place in that heaven.... I use to think Iggy Pop was God.... I was innocent then.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

What I owe to 2005 –

All annual-event-compilations should really be done before the year ends, but we were so busy doing nothing in Naples, Fl that I found myself short of time……I feel however, that summary of the year is a must when one hits 30. I no longer remember when it was that we spent that gorgeous summer in Annecy or which year was it that we met Leslie for the first time. …. so here I am twelve later and for all it’s worth, here goes my list……

Mayor events in 2006 –

In February we sold Bola de Nieve, our 1988 Turbo SPG Saab, that was costing us more money than we could afford. It was truly sad to let Bola go, I do not think that I will ever be able to love a car as much as I loved this one, no matter how many times it broke down on me/us.

I turned thirty in April. 3 + 0, ladies and gentleman t h ir t y = 30. I finally hit the third floor and the elevator just won’t stop!……I had built myself up for getting completely hammered and celebrate the End of my youth in great style….instead I ended up drinking ginger ale, falling asleep in Niamh + Billy’s couch and going to bed at 11.30pm. In fairness though, I owe it to Rosa that I did not wake up the day after feeling old, achy and miserably hung-over.

J finished his masters at Columbia in May.

Our first daughter Rosa was born on June 1st 2005 at 10:42am at St, Vincent's hopsital - Manhattan.

J, Niamh, Tony and I successfully pulled together our first film series in our community park this summer.

Maeve and Derek moved from Donegal to our neighborhood with their two clever kids, Aoife and Anthony.

Leslie moved to Chicago in September. :(

I started blogging in October.

Rosa got her American, Irish and Colombian passports.

Our friend Edgard Cobo died of lung cancer at age 30. This was a very sad moment as he was a dear friend.

J & I spent our first Christmas as parents and as much as I dreaded spending it here in the US, away from family and friends, we had a wonderful time. Actually it was good for us to be alone as a family……on holidays…

I feel well rested and I look forward to going back home (NJ/NY) despite the winter…

2005 was a year full of events, some sad but mostly happy for our family. Rosa is our favorite “bundle of joy” and we look forward to the years ahead of us…

Sunday, January 01, 2006

New Year - New Teeth

I discovered a little white bud in Rosa's mouth that seems to be making its way up her lower gums. How exciting... new year - new set of teeth.

I saw it today for the first time and my mom, who just arrived, saw it too.... What a way to star a year!

Good Morning 2006!

Rosa is seven months today!

Our year ended in great style…we woke up in sunny Naples and walked down to the beach to do some shell picking, some swimming and some walking….it was so beautiful.. we even got to see two dolphins playing very close to the beach… Rosa was charming everyone ….she is getting bigger too…(and heavier, mind you)….we had a very relaxed and easy day…

We ended up going to bed at 12.09AM, after playing a few hands of Backgammon (I winning every single hand) and drinking champers (aka – champagne). I was so relieved to receive 2006 in my pajamas while everyone else in this building was “dressed for success”. I loved meeting a few of them in the laundry room while they were frantically drying their favorite shirt while I was doing our beach gear. J & I had a great time, we had bid 2006 farewell during our trip to Naples that proved very relaxing…..

We crossed the Everglades on our way in via route 41. I wish I had Conrad’s ability to narrate so that I could do justice to the astonishing landscape. There is something profoundly romantic about swamps and I can’t quite put my finger on it. The alligators were taking the sun on the side of the road while eagles nested on the top of the trees and many other strange birds hid inside the mangroves watching the cars go by. I was temped to take an air boat tour (and I think I will actually go back and get it) but we were eager to arrive as Rosa was getting impatient in the back seat.

I think I will never forget where I was in 2005. I turned 30 and I had a baby. This has been one of our most beautiful years but also one of the toughest – I am looking forward to 2006 !

Saturday, December 24, 2005

cheeks at the beach

cachetes en la playa 2
Originally uploaded by rosa bella coco coffey.

We are down in sunny FL enjoying the nicer weather and not missing NJ/NYC a bit. In fact, I am dreading having to go back and face inhuman temperatures of below 60 degrees F. As I recently told a friend (who has it much worse winter wise since he lives in Romania (god love him)) winter in NYC “is very cold for this southern beau who dreams of sand, beaches, lakes, rivers, swimming togs and flip flops”.

My brother's building has a swimming pool overlooking the bay and just a few blocks away from the beach. We hang out there on the afternoons and enjoy the sun and the view.

I must admit that I missed NY for a split of a second once and that was when I went to buy papaya at “Wild Oats”, South Beach’s version of Whole Foods, and I heard Dean Martin’s voice singing “Let it snow”. The Christmas feeling is just so much nicer over there; the snowmen and the Santas look out of place here while they look so at home in New York……here one could never have “chestnuts roasting on an open fire”……. I missed NY then, but as I stepped outside the store, wearing my flip flops and my swim suit underneath (mind you, everyone here is wearing winter boots???) I realized that if I have to face 6 months of cold I should really be dreaming of a warm Christmas….. and that is exactly what I am doing!

Have a wonderful Christmas!

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

J's X-mas present

isn't it beautiful?!!!!..... I love this designer

santa maeve

santa maeve
Originally uploaded by lovelibelula.
This picture does not do justice to the beauty of the butterflies mobile that my friend and neighbour Maeve gave me for X-mas. It's sooooooo beautiful. I adore it... the butterflies are so delicate... they have glitter on their wings and everything. I am so happy. I can't wait to hang it... I will wait however until we know whether or not we will be staying at this flat for longer than a couple of months. This incertitude is (quite literally) driving me insane! …specially considering that I want to hang all the nice things that Santa had in store for me this year….

I forgot to mention that J gave me a beautiful lamp for Christmas…. I guess in the same lines of the mobile butterflies….

Anyway there are so many things I want to blog about but haven’t had a second to spare…I hope to make more time in the next couple of days.

For those of you stuck in NY winter, try and stay warm. For those of you stuck in a worse winter – god love you.

Monday, December 12, 2005

easy music

My friend Toto was playing here on sunday evening. Click on "escuchar (mp3 stream 64kbps)". Truly del.icio.us. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Thanks Toto. We love you.