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April 27, 2022
Mom Friends: How Strong Friendships Build Strong Families | S3 E16

Our guest Mory Martinez teams up with Mary Alessi on the podcast to share how their friendship as mothers helped them successfully guide their children into meaningful, blessed lives as adults.


Moms: Do you ever wonder if anyone really understands what you go through?

If so, you're likely looking for a 'mom friend'  - someone in your circle who can support you and be there as you raise your family and handle all the pressures that come with it.

After over 30 years of sharing friendship, motherhood, family, business and ministry,  Mary Alessi and Mory Martinez have learned the value of having a real friend by your side as you navigate the seasons of life.

Mory Martinez, along with her husband David, were founding members of Metro Life Church when Steve and Mary Alessi started the ministry in 1997 - in fact, the first meeting of the church took place in the Martinez' living room.

Since serving as the church's first children's ministry director, Mory has worked alongside the Alessis as a pivotal part of the family business in a variety of capacities. Throughout their 38 years of marriage, she and David have built a thriving construction business, raised three children, and have been blessed with five grandchildren. Mory is an avid photographer in her spare time and loves to spend time in natural environments.

In this touching episode, these two dedicated moms, wives, ministry leaders and businesswomen explain how motherhood and friendship intertwine and how their relationship helped them successfully guide their children into meaningful, blessed lives as adults.

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More Resources

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http://chrisalessi.com

 

 

Transcript

Mary Alessi  

Well, hello again. It is Mary Alessi here, welcome to another episode of The Family Business podcast with the Alessis, where we talk about things we can't talk about on Sundays. And today, I am so privileged to have my closest friend of 30 years plus. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Mory Martinez. She's with me today, we have been friends since we were very young. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Very young. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Had all our kids around the same time, your kids are a little older than my kids, but you went first. And I got to learn a whole lot watching you. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Oh, boy. 

 

Mary Alessi  

I learned some good things. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Good. 

 

Mary Alessi  

And we've all been married a long time to our spouses. But we've also worked side by side and built this ministry. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yep. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's called Metro Life Church. You and David were a big part of it from day one. And you're the pillar of this ministry along with Steve, and I, and all of our family. So, I thought, how perfect would it be—? David's been in the booth? 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yes.

 

Mary Alessi  

David's talked a couple of times, right? 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah, I think so. 

 

Mary Alessi  

I think Steve and him have shared, they're super close. We spent a lot of time together, not only in ministry, building the ministry, continuing to build it. We're going to celebrate our 25 year.

 

Mory Martinez  

I can't even believe that. This was our 25th anniversary, anniversary and Easter. 

 

Mary Alessi  

I know. 

 

Mory Martinez  

That was crazy. 

 

Mary Alessi  

When Steve said that, I was shocked. It didn't even dawn on me that that was true. Now, everything this year would be our 25th. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. So cool. 

 

Mary Alessi  

25 years working together, building the vision, and watching this church grow has been pretty cool, from small rooms. 

 

Mory Martinez  

What a ride It's been. 

 

Mary Alessi  

To hotel rooms, yeah. To building buildings, and...

 

Mory Martinez  

To renting places, and then leasing, buying. And here we are. 

 

Mary Alessi  

We have so much we could talk about. I mean, when I asked you to be on this podcast with me, you were like, "What are we going to talk about?" What could we not talk about? Because there're so many things that, in our lives, that are so intertwined. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That, we know, God did that. But we also chose to stay friends. We have valued one another, and we would not want to do this life without Mory and David in it.

 

Mory Martinez  

I can't imagine doing this life without Pastor Steve and Mary in it. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's right. And we've said that to each other over and over again. It's funny, yesterday I was talking to a young girl in the church, we had a meeting, you were supposed to be in that meeting, but you couldn't be in that meeting. Remember that meeting? Anyway.

 

[crosstalk]

 

Mory Martinez  

Because we have a lot of meetings around here. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Meetings, meetings, meetings. So, I was meeting with her, and when the meeting was over, we started talking about her friendship. And as we were talking about, they're both single, we were talking about it. I was just reflecting on our friendship, and it was giving me so much real revelation from a simple perspective of, just be friends. Just stay friends. No matter what comes your way. Don't let insecurities pull you apart. That's not our topic today.

 

Mory Martinez  

No. But boy, we can go down that and stay there for a long time. 

 

Mary Alessi  

All day. That's something we talked about. Just marriage, we could talk about that, which we will do. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Okay. 

 

Mary Alessi  

But since we are kind of embarking on motherhood coming up, Mother's Day. I wanted to talk to you about raising kids. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Because you are— you've raised three amazing young people who are married to amazing people. Two are married with children. So, you have grandkids. I'm about to have my first grandchild. But, I just want to say this from the beginning of our friendship, you were— you know, you're about five or six years out, ahead of having kids for me. Your youngest, Michael, is the closest to my kids, other than Christopher and the older two, but there was a gap there. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Right. 

 

Mary Alessi  

And there were so many things that I just learned from your motherhood, watching you, because you were an intense mom. But you were very intentional. And I happened— I was just more of a laid back, mom. And there were things about that that were good, but there were things about that that were bad. So, having a good friend that I trusted, that made good decisions, really helped me say, "Okay, I need to put some more pressure on myself. I need to pay a little bit more close attention to a lot of things." 

 

And I've told you this before, but I wanted to say this for the podcast, so that people listening understand, a good, godly, female friend in your life, is the greatest gift that God can give you, for a lot of reasons. And not for the warm fuzzies. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Absolutely. Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Because those, you don't always have those. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Right, right. 

 

Mary Alessi  

We've worked together, and we love each other, and we get into each other's nerves, and you get mad at me. 

 

Mory Martinez  

We're total opposites. Total opposites. Total opposites. 

 

Mary Alessi  

We couldn't be more different. 

 

Mory Martinez  

I mean, if you look at each other right now, your lipstick is dark, mine is very pale, barely there. 

 

Mary Alessi  

I tried to share with you, and you wouldn't do it. 

 

Mory Martinez  

No, no, no, no, we're totally opposites. But it goes both ways, Pastor Mary, so, yes, I'm very intentional, I'm very intense as well. I've become less intense since becoming a grandmother. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Yes. Grand-mommyhood has been very good for you. 

 

Mory Martinez  

It has been very good for me, but also, at the same time, it's so great to have a friend that is about fun. So, where I need order, and we just recently had this conversation, I need a plan. And even with raising my children, and getting my children to a certain place, I always had a plan to get there. And my personality is, I like to look at the end, what do I want my grown kids to look like? And I use this little strategy for anything I'm doing in life. 

 

I look at the end, and I say, "This is what I don't want to happen. And what can I do on this path to make sure that I get there, pretty much so," right? Because this path is never perfect, right? We're going to hit some bumps, we're going to make some huge mistakes as parents, but there's nothing more valuable than having somebody doing it with you. That has the common faith part, which absolutely, that's important. But, maybe, do it differently. So you can learn from each other. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's right. But, you know, the key thing is, you can be different in personalities, but you have to have the same values and expectations. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yes. 

 

Mary Alessi  

So, we've always wanted the same thing for our children. And that's why they've been raised almost like cousins. They've been close, especially your youngest, Michael, was really like my fifth child. And mine, made you have seven kids, right? 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yes.

 

Mary Alessi  

So, we watched each other's kids, picked each other's kids up from school. You helped me homeschooling once in a while, if they needed it, if they were around the church, you were— you are still like an— they'll tell you, you're more like their aunt, than you are my friend. You're a very vital part of their life. As a matter of fact, when Stephanie met her husband, she said, "I know that he's the one, but I need to make sure that David and Mory feel the same way." 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

And that was very important to her, because you had a hand in raising her. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

So she wanted to get the thumbs up from you guys, and that really mattered to her. 

 

Mory Martinez  

That's so sweet. 

 

Mary Alessi  

But those are the benefits, though, of when you decide you're going to hang in there with your friends that have the same values. And I would say, again, we're starting this podcast, we're going to go somewhere, and talk about actual parenting. But you do need a village, you do need people with your value system to help you raise your kids. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Absolutely. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Tell the story really quick about Christina when she was about 10 years old, your middle child, the one where you asked me to talk to her. We were in the pool, at my house, about her struggling with her weight.

 

Mory Martinez  

Okay, so Christina— my Christina was your Gaby, sorry, Gaby. So, every time we would go into the dressing room at Old Navy, or K-Mart, or wherever we were shopping at the time, we would always leave in tears, because the girls went through that phase between 8 and 12, where they gained some weight. And I was at my wit's end. I was at my wit's end, because I didn't know how to help her any longer. So, I came to you and I said, "Pastor Mary, I need you to help me with Christina." And you said something so profound to her that was silly at the time, but she took it, because she couldn't receive from her mom. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

And it sounds silly.

 

Mary Alessi  

Very silly. Go ahead. 

 

Mory Martinez  

You have to grow wide before you grow tall. She was like, "Okay. I'll be wide, and I'm going to go tall." 

 

Mary Alessi  

You are a tree, Christina, you have to go wide before you can go tall.

 

Mory Martinez  

And because you said it, and you were somebody important to me—

 

Mary Alessi  

That's right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

She received it. And she sorted it, it wasn't such a bad, you know, every time Old Navy was like, she had that in the back of her head, and she got there, she got there. You know, they both got there.

 

Mary Alessi  

They both. We were talking about it this morning, about Gaby, because Gaby, her personality was, "Okay. I know I'm chubby. I'm 10, and I'm chubby. And it bothers me, but it doesn't really bother me. Because I really would rather just eat cookies." And so, we have some—

 

Mory Martinez  

I remember that. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Ohh, my gosh!

 

Mory Martinez  

She didn't cry as much Christina cried. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Oh, no, no, no. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Gaby chose, "I love those cookies."

 

Mary Alessi  

Those Chips-Ahoy! cookies. No, the Nestle's. When they started making those already prepackaged, that were already cut. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's what ruined all of us. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That was when the world changed. 

 

Mory Martinez  

The break and bake. 

 

Mary Alessi  

The break and bake. And the brownies. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah, they're the from the devil. 

 

Mary Alessi  

They're evil. And that's when all of us and all of our kids got fat. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah, that's what happened. 

 

Mary Alessi  

This is true. But, you know, the reality is, I helped you in seasons with your kids. You have helped me in seasons, and that doesn't stop. It hasn't stopped.

 

Mory Martinez  

No. And it's all it truly is all about seasons, because we all reach that season. I'm not thinking that we are prepared to tackle it. So, whether it's toddlers, preschool, going into elementary, leaving your kids for the first time with a teacher, sleepovers, whether you do that or not, you know, preteens, teens, young adulthood, you all go in it afraid. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Feeling that you're not equipped. And I think that is just so important, so, you were five years behind me. And we fed off each other. And if there was a question, we would always ask. But it's also important— It was important to me to have somebody a few years ahead of me. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Absolutely. 

 

Mory Martinez  

And not that they did it perfect, but if they did it really bad, I made sure I didn't do that. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

So, I was watching everything, the good and the bad outcome. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Sure. 

 

Mory Martinez  

And if they did it good, I made sure I leaned on, and asked, "Hey, how did you get there?" And that's so important, because we feel like we need to, as moms, we can ask those questions, but we absolutely need to show that we don't have all the answers. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

We don't know how to keep this together, but if we lean on somebody behind you— 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's good. 

 

Mory Martinez  

In front of you, and all with the same faith base, it's going to be okay.

 

Mary Alessi  

Absolutely. And, you know, let's talk about how you raise your kids, because, I think, it's important for people to know that all three of your kids, very high level of education, Ivy Leaguers. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

And you— 

 

Mory Martinez  

It was God. 

 

Mary Alessi  

It was God, it was God. And I remember, over the years, you made a statement one time to me about your Facebook page, you want to tell everybody what it said?

 

Mory Martinez  

So, there was a season— Well, first of all, all the kids' education was very important to us. And making sure that the kids, one of the thing that we instilled in them, whatever they put their mind to, if it was just for a season, they always had to complete that season. So, I think that's a big issue with parenting today. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Yes. 

 

Mory Martinez  

We let our kids try a whole bunch of things. And if they don't like it, they could just drop it, like if it was nothing. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

But if you committed to this art class, or if you committed to this club, this math club, you had to see it to the end. That was our rule, in our family. They couldn't come in three weeks later, and say, "I don't like it." Right?

 

Mary Alessi  

Which is brilliant, by the way. You need to write that down, that's important.

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah, because it shows commitment and that you are willing to finish something. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

If you didn't like it, it's okay. We will never go back to it again. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

But you tried it, and you completed it to the end, right? And I could even tell the story of— Christina thought she was going to be a doctor at one point, and we took this into her college. She's now at Princeton University, and she's taking pre-med classes, and she's three classes in, crying every class. 

 

Wow. And I'm like, girl, you only got three more classes, you're going to do it, you're going to keep crying, you're going to finish, so you have that to fall back on. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

And she did it. But yes, education was always important, and I think that our kids got to Ivy League schools fully paid because of our faithfulness to God. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

I mean, no other. There's no other reason David and Mory Martinez, from a small island in Key West Florida, grown, being raised poor, barefoot all the time, there's no way that their children could get to an Ivy League school if it wasn't for God.

 

Mary Alessi  

Because you and David weren't Ivy Leaguers.

 

Mory Martinez  

No, we weren't. We're FIUers. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's right. That's right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

So we were very proud, and FIU was a good school, it serves them well, but we just, always made sure they were at church on Sunday, always made sure they were at church on Wednesday. They served alongside. Serving was a family ordeal. So we did children's ministry, and if we did that, that meant that they were going to be part of picking out the props, picking out the lessons, picking out things that— games that they thought was fun, we included them. And then, they did their discipline part, and God did the rest. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

It was amazing. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Which is so important for people to understand, because you had made a statement one time to me, feeling really guilty about putting all that on Facebook. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. So, you know, when your daughter, your son, goes to Johns Hopkins, I feel guilty. Listen, I have struggling. I'm struggling right now, just saying this on a podcast, because I feel like it's boastful. And that was my whole issue. I'm always dealing with— I was raised Catholic, so I'm always dealing with that Catholic guilt. Like, "I shouldn't be saying that, that's prideful." But Nick got his master's from Johns Hopkins University, right? 

 

And then Christina went and got her undergrad degree from Princeton University, fully paid for, and Michael, right now, is in a top 10 Law School. So, how that happens can only be God, but— 

 

Mary Alessi  

After UM. 

 

Mory Martinez  

After graduating UM, and so you feel guilty like, "Oh, I'm at Princeton, and I shouldn't put that post up," and, "Oh, this is happening at Johns Hopkins," or, "Nick just won another award." Nick was racking in awards, like it was abnormal. He was a kid that was taking all the trophies home. But I had this conversation with you, how do I not display the goodness of God? I did not do that. I am not that smart. Come on, you know me. I have a good mind, but I am not that kind of mind, and how that happened, it was all God, and how do I not brag on God? 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

In those moments? 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's right. And you got over that. 

 

Mory Martinez  

You told me, "get over it." 

 

Mary Alessi  

Get over it, because it's not bragging when you didn't kill yourself trying to get your kids to this level of education. 

 

Mory Martinez  

No, I didn't. 

 

Mary Alessi  

But you just did what you and David do, which was, you're going to be good kids, education is going to be first, you're going to get good grades. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Right. 

 

Mary Alessi  

And then, God was partnered in that. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

And because of your faithfulness, this was the vision and the plan for your children. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

So, all my kids, not one went to an Ivy League school. You know, they've all graduated local schools here, universities, they've done well, but I didn't look at your life and say, "I'm a failure because my kids aren't going." 

 

Mory Martinez  

No. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That was never a thought, because you had a vision for you— God had a plan. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yes. 

 

Mary Alessi  

For your family. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yes. 

 

Mary Alessi  

And your children, and then, of course, their own individual plans, as He had for mine. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Right. 

 

Mary Alessi  

And that's one of the things I think young moms today, I know we struggled in the beginning— you struggle in the beginning, because the stress is so great, that somehow you're supposed to get your kids to a certain place, and you're supposed to know how to do it, and you don't. But you really have to rely on good values, be faithful to good values. And if you're not in a church, you and I both know how important a good Christian environment is. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

So, go to church, get your kids involved in church, get your kids seeing you giving back, community service, to the church. Because they become well-rounded people. 

 

Mory Martinez  

They do. 

 

Mary Alessi  

And they learn good principles to get good grades. And then God partners with you. But one of the things that makes it difficult as a mom is the comparison game.

 

Mory Martinez  

Oh, I was just going to say, the judgment. We are so horrible as women when it comes to that. And then, even worse when it comes to parenting. So, it would have been very easy for me to judge you, that you were so, "Oh, forget the homework, done. It's great. If they don't, they don't." I mean, there were times I thought you were out of your mind. But you probably thought I was out of my mind, that I would just make sure that the kids got their homework done. But we got over that in the friendship. And we grew from that.  And we realized we both had different judgment. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Different paths. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Different paths, not judgments. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Right, right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Different paths for our children. And, to take out that, find yourself another mom, and to all the young moms out there, find yourself another mom that's different from you. 

 

Mary Alessi  

It's true. 

 

Mory Martinez  

And she's going to bring the best out of you, you're going to bring the best out of her, and don't judge her path. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's it. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Because her path is different.

 

Mary Alessi  

Well, you made me be a lot more— Okay, although I feel like ministry is our future for our kids, if they so choose. So, you know, it's easy to go "Well, so what? The school they go to, it doesn't matter." But that's not fair either. Push them to the best limit you can push them to. And if they're musical, and you start seeing those gifts, and just be a good mom, to make sure you're raising well-rounded, happy kids, with good characters. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah, be good stewards of the gifts that God has given your children. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's it. 

 

Mory Martinez  

That's what it is, and where they end up at the end, is going to be in the godly place. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Because God gave them those gifts. You're not forcing those gifts on them. And everybody has different gifts, so...

 

Mary Alessi  

Everybody has different gifts. I remember when Stephanie and Michael were born, they're five days apart. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Five days. 

 

Mary Alessi  

My second and your third. So, we were pregnant at the same time. And that's a whole another podcast, talking about infertility. We'll talk about that another time, because you were there for me in that season, we have a really sweet story, anyway. No, don't, no, no, don't go there. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Don't go there. 

 

Mary Alessi  

We're going to stay here. But I remember when they were in car seats, newborn Stephanie was just way out ahead of things physically. She was a monkey climbing up everything, and Michael would just look at her and didn't even walk.

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah, no, she was walking at eight months, though. 

 

Mary Alessi  

She was walking at eight months, she was running at nine. I saw a video on a reel today of a baby that was, literally, the mom built a gymnast sport bar over her crib. And she was holding on with her feet, doing backflips. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Oh, that was Stephanie. 

 

Mary Alessi  

I was like, "Why didn't I think of that?" 

 

Mory Martinez  

Michael was just sitting in the car seat, observing the world, smiling all the time. Stephanie was screaming, and moving, moving, moving. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Never stopped. 

 

Mory Martinez  

And yeah, that was okay.

 

Mary Alessi  

And there was a moment where you were like, "Should I have Michael tested? Because he's just not walking."

 

Mory Martinez  

He smiled too much.

 

Mary Alessi  

He was like, "I'm not crazy like her." But as a young mom, it is easy to think, "Oh, my baby should be doing." 

 

Mory Martinez  

Oh, yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

My baby should be where this baby is.

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

It's where it starts. 

 

Mory Martinez  

That comparison thing is very dangerous. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Starts in day one. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. Yeah. Because there's such a wide range of where children should reach a milestone. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

And we do that, like I said, for all things in our life, as women, but when other people's children have accomplished a milestone that your child hasn't, you start feeling like you're a failure, or something is wrong. Or you should be running to a doctor, and find a diagnosis. But that is not the case. 

 

Mary Alessi  

No. 

 

Mory Martinez  

God has created us to be very unique in reaching those milestones. And— 

 

Mary Alessi  

Michael was just— [crosstalk]

 

Mory Martinez  

They'll reach them when they reach them.

 

Mary Alessi  

He was already using his brain. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yes, he's already using his brain. 

 

Mary Alessi  

He was thinking, and I can remember looking at Stephanie, and going, "I don't know, because that's just not normal." 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah, exactly. 

 

Mary Alessi  

What she's able to do isn't normal, so I wouldn't compare. Because Christopher never did that. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

My other two girls never did that. She just did, but if we had continued to compare, first of all, it could have hurt our friendship. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Which God created, our friendship, brought us together, so that we could help raise our kids, because he had a plan for us as friends, which is such a beautiful thing. But it's a trap you can fall into, and it starts there, but then it can just grow. So then, as they got older, and Michael was like, 10,11, 12, they were in my house all the time. I remember one time he complained to you, because he said, "I can't do my homework at their house anymore, mom."

 

Mory Martinez  

No, I got a better story. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Okay, tell them. Tell hem.

 

Mory Martinez  

Let's tell the Disney World story. 

 

Oh, oh, no. Five years old.

 

So, we take the youth group at some point, Dave and I are also helping with a youth group. And we took them to Night of joy. And I tell you, you are in charge of Michael. He's like four or five years old. And yes, you have Chris, you have Stephanie and Michael, about four or five years old. Then you have Lauren. I don't know if Gaby's around yet. But you're taking them all through Disney World.

 

Now, I'm from Orlando, and I know Disney. 

 

No, wait a minute. I don't even think Lauren was there, but that's besides the point. [crosstalk] 

 

I think we left her. 

 

Mary Alessi  

They were both about four years old, and they were somewhere. 

 

Mory Martinez  

And Michael got so frustrated with you, because you would not follow the map. He's watching the map, and you're like, "Oh, let's go here. Let's go there."

 

And at the end of the night, you come to me like, "Here's your son, I want to have fun at Disney World. He wants me to follow the map," and he was five years old. 

 

Mary Alessi  

He was so little. Well, first of all, I had to work to not be insulted by a five-year-old. Because I'm like, "I lived in Orlando. Okay? I know Disney like the back of my head. You go the opposite way when you go to Disney to beat the crowd." And he was just— I'd never seen anything like it in my life. I was like, "I have gone to Disney with an old man." 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah, you did. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Who has to follow rules. And you've gone with an adult who's more like a child, who does not like rules.

 

Mory Martinez  

Well, you gave him back that day. I did not take offense.

 

Mary Alessi  

I'm done. I'm done.

 

Mory Martinez  

I laughed, and I'm like, "Well..."

 

Mary Alessi  

But see, those are the things where they were just different. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

So, for us to compare the two, and think that, at any point, they were supposed to be on the same page. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

They weren't. And that's the trap that we would love to avoid young moms from falling into, if their kid, you know, misbehaves or talks back. You know, your kid has its own personality. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

And they've got gifts. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Well, you should address that if they do talk back. You should absolutely address. And that's something we have very much in common. We don't put up with that. 

 

Mary Alessi  

No, no, we're both very strong moms when it comes to that. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah, yeah, absolutely. And I think that also goes into adulthood. So, you know, as we talked about this season, now our kids are all young adults. Most— We should say, half are married, if we add them all up. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Yeah, half. Three and three. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. And you're about to—

 

Mary Alessi  

Four or three, sorry, they're seven. My bad. 

 

Mory Martinez  

They're seven, you're right. So, you're about to become a grandmother for the first time, so, super exciting. But then again, it's the comparison. And, you just got to be careful that, you know, we all are just encouraging our kids to be what God has created them to be, and to be good, God-fearing human beings.

 

Mary Alessi  

Well, I remember— I don't know how much time we have left, because I want to move into this thing. We got— Okay, good. So, I wanted to— because if our kids listen to this, it's okay, because we are going to be honest, right? But I remember when Christopher and Stephanie were both marrying their significant others, because they both got married in one year. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Right. 

 

Mary Alessi  

So, I had two weddings in one year. 

 

Mory Martinez  

That was insane. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Insane. I'm still picking up hair off the floor from the stress of that. But, I remember you and David telling Steve and I, one night, "Man, it doesn't—," you know, the kids, just like it was at Christmastime, when you had to make sure each kid got five presents, it doesn't stop. 

 

Mory Martinez  

No. 

 

Mary Alessi  

The competition can be fierce. Even though they don't want that to be true. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Right. 

 

Mary Alessi  

If you go to one's house, you gotta go to the other. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Oh, yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

What do you do for one's grandkids, you got to do for the other. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

And you really kind of have to watch that yourself. So, kids, if y'all are listening, sorry, but you put us under pressure. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Anyway.

 

Mory Martinez  

It's another level of pressure, honestly. 

 

Mary Alessi  

It's a whole 'nother thing. 

 

Mory Martinez  

A toddler, you get thrown in a room and, you know, say you're in timeout, and stop having a pity party, but when a 22-year-old is coming to you saying, "Oh, our sister is about to have a baby. Thank you for being sweet to us all these  years. We know that we're no longer your children."

 

Mary Alessi  

Goodbye, mom and dad. That just happened to me. When they thought she was going into labor, they were like, bye, mom and dad. Good knowing you, because they know.

 

Mory Martinez  

So, they're keeping score. That's the big thing. Even as adults, but, you know what? That sort of keeps us in check. 

 

Mary Alessi  

It does. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Because certain personalities of our adult children attract us. So, I have a very distinct personality, three different children with very distinct personalities. So, I'm attracted to each one of them for a different reason. But I can see that we can get caught to stain with— Christina is my only daughter. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

She is like my best friend and my sister. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

And the older we get, that's going to be even more intense, but I could see where I need to now be a little more nurturing of a relationship that's a little different. But I also love this about Nick, you know, he is the order person, the person that's making sure that everything is done, and prepared me, and I love that about that kid. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Oh, yes, yes. 

 

Mory Martinez  

And I have to be intentional about those sweet moments that I have with Christina, that are so natural, to have it with him. And the same thing with Michael.

 

Mary Alessi  

Say something about Michael, because he's going to hear this anything and go, "You didn't say anything about me!" 

 

Mory Martinez  

I was just talking about Disney World. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Oh, we did, we did. Sorry, Michael, you got yours.

 

Mory Martinez  

No. So, same thing goes with Michael. So, you have to be intentional. But that keeps you in check that they are keeping score. 

 

Mary Alessi  

No, it's true. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Actually, it does. It's a good thing. 

 

Mary Alessi  

It is good. 

 

Mory Martinez  

It's like it's pressure. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

But, you know, I do appreciate that. Like, okay, they are keeping score, they are watching. I actually am so ADD about this. I mean, that's the right word. But I count how many posts I do on my kids and grandkids, to make sure they're equally represented on my social media. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Oh, that's another level. 

 

Mory Martinez  

That's another level.

 

Mary Alessi  

Wow. Okay, you and I need to go to lunch, and I need to take some notes here, because it's true.

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah, because you don't want one to be looked like it's being favored more than the other. 

 

Mary Alessi  

No, no. 

 

Mory Martinez  

But it's not a bad thing.

 

Mary Alessi  

It's not. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

We need to come back, though, and talk about several things. But one thing I would love for us to talk about in another podcast is just, elderly moms, dealing with siblings. Your mom passed last year. So, my mom's still alive. But one thing, in regard to this conversation, there's three of us, my sisters and I, and my mom lives on the same property as my twin sister. So they're together all the time. And she's at the age where she just can't play the fair game anymore. She's older and it's really hard. So, it's on me to now go and pursue her, and spend that quality time with her to make it fair. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

So it's funny how— 

 

Mory Martinez  

It switches. 

 

Mary Alessi  

It switches off, flips.

 

Mory Martinez  

Actually, it all flips.

 

Mary Alessi  

Yeah. And that's a whole podcast. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yes, it is. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Dealing with their elderly parents, because, once they're gone, you really do start going through the Rolodex of memories. "Did I do enough? Was there enough? Did I..." 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yes. 

 

Mary Alessi  

You know, all that happens.

 

Mory Martinez  

So you become the mother. That's the big switch that flips. And we have that in common. So, our siblings lived with our moms, and were the only ones living out of town. 

 

Mary Alessi  

That's right. 

 

Mory Martinez  

So there was a lot of pressure in making sure that I was doing my part to, you know, spend incredible quality time with her. And I know you feel that pressure too, but that is a whole 'nother podcast. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Which we really need to talk about, because dealing with elderly parents, our parents are living older, and we're living older, and it's just a seasonal change. This generation is different than our parents' generation. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Right. 

 

Mary Alessi  

So, anyway, you see why we could talk for hours and hours? 

 

Mory Martinez  

Wow, that went by really fast. 

 

Mary Alessi  

I told you. Super simple. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah, we could do this for hours. We could get five podcasts today. 

 

Mary Alessi  

In a heartbeat. That's why Steve and I love this room, because you just really get to talk, and it helps a lot of people, Mory, especially young moms today. There's so much stress and pressure. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

We had it, but we didn't have Pinterest, we didn't have Joanna Gaines telling us our houses were ugly. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yeah. Yeah. 

 

Mary Alessi  

You know, we should—

 

Mory Martinez  

Thank God we didn't have any of that.

 

Mary Alessi  

Thank God. I don't know how I would factor that in to what we already have. I feel sorry for young couples that feel like if they don't have that cute fig tree in the corner, their house is ugly. 

 

Mory Martinez  

I know. 

 

Mary Alessi  

You know? And if it's white or old. 

 

Mory Martinez  

I know. 

 

Mary Alessi  

You know, let all that go. Enjoy your life and raise your kids. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Yes. And have fun doing it. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Have a good time. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Be balanced. That's the big theme of today, right? Balance is key in everything, so be balanced. Find yourself an opposite friend that's also a mom. 

 

Mary Alessi  

And get through it together. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Have a good time. That's right.

 

Mary Alessi  

Thanks for being on here. Okay, one last thing. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Go. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Because you were telling us before you got in, we have to bring this up. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Oh, gosh. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Because I told you, your hair looked great. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Oh, yes. 

 

Mary Alessi  

This is another podcast conversation about marriage. The things you never think— 

 

Mory Martinez  

Is this a free podcast? 

 

Mary Alessi  

Yes. I'm setting up the freeze. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Okay, so, my friend, Mary Alessi, told me yesterday, at four o'clock, I was going to be doing this today. 

 

Mary Alessi  

Oh, come on.

 

Mory Martinez  

I like a plan. I like to know. I even had to ask you for talking points, but, I had grays in my hair, and I wasn't planning to color my hair till next week. So, last night we had an appointment, and on the way home, I told David, "I need to stop at Publix to get hair color. I'm getting in a podcast booth, and I can't go to the hair salon." I don't have the 12-hour notice, right? So, my husband, I promised him since COVID— Did your husband do your hair during COVID?

 

Mary Alessi  

No. 

 

Mory Martinez  

No? Wow. 

 

Mary Alessi  

I wore a hat.

 

Mory Martinez  

Oh, you wore a hat. No, I made David color my hair.

 

Mary Alessi  

I have three daughters at my house. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Oh, that's right. Okay, so the last time I told David, "I promised you that I would never ask you again." And David colored my roots, and you paid such a good compliment to him. 

 

Mary Alessi  

It was beautiful. 

 

Mory Martinez  

Because he did a great job.

 

Mary Alessi  

David, you did a good job, sir. He's a keeper. He's a keeper. At this point, you can't give him back, it's been too long. 

 

Mory Martinez  

That's true. 

 

Mary Alessi  

But he did a good job on your hair. Anyway, all that being said, I just wanted to throw that out there because that was funny, a little funny, a little funny piece of information. Thank you for joining us, and stay tuned. Keep listening. Go back and listen to episodes you have not. Listen to all about family, all about raising kids. We have a whole lot more coming for you. We hope it has been a blessing for you today, and don't forget, share, like, and make sure you leave a comment if you'd like this episode. Bye, guys.

Mory Martinez Profile Photo

Mory Martinez

Mory Martinez, along with her husband David, were founding members of Metro Life Church when Steve and Mary Alessi started the ministry in 1997 - in fact, the first meeting of the church took place in the Martinez' living room.

Since serving as the church's first children's ministry director, Mory has worked alongside the Alessis as a pivotal part of the family business in a variety of capacities. Throughout their 38 years of marriage, she and David have raised three children - Nick, Christina and Michael - and have been blessed with five grandchildren.

Mory is an avid photographer in her spare time and loves to spend time in natural environments.