Advertisements

Archive

Monthly Archives: October 2014

(Desplacese hacia abajo para leer en Español.)

YouTube has been a very amazing adventure AND a challenge for my life and that of my Abuela.  We have both learned so much about so many things.  Funny enough, I never thought my Abuela at her age, would be thinking about YouTube subscribers, Instagram and Facebook. LOL  Sometimes I wonder how much is too much to share about us?  Nevertheless, we have put ourselves out there for the world to see and despite the risk,  we have had a lot of positive feedback.  In our free time together, I try and read to her as many messages as I can and boy, does she enjoy hearing what you all have to say.  But along with the positive comments, comes the reality that there will always be negative comments.  Sadly, the few negative comments that we do receive are usually the ones that linger the longest.  I believe that those negative comments come from people who do not really know much about what we are doing and why we record the videos.  I also believe they say negative things because they do not really know my story.  I say “my story” even though this channel is really about my abuela and her cooking because I am the producer of our show.  I am the one who originally wanted to document my grandmother’s recipes, so even though these videos are about Abuela, they reflect my purpose.

If you have been following us for a while, you know that Abuela is an immigrant from Mexico.  My mom is also born in Mexico and came to the states as a teenager.  Luckily for me, I had parents who still had deep roots in Mexico, so we were privileged to visit family annually.  I loved our trips to the mother land–visiting family from both my mom and dad’s side of the family.  And of course I had my Abuelos whom lived very close to us for a large duration of my childhood.  So one could say, “I was never too far from my roots.”  I do not ever recall being embarrassed of who I was or even where my family was from.  Being Mexican was never a shameful thing.  In fact, my parents never gave me a reason to feel ashamed of my heritage.  My dad would not even allow me to speak in English at home.  Especially if we visited Mexico, we were not allowed to speak in English.  If I spoke English with my siblings, I got the “Ojo de Aguila,” and sometimes–something worse.

I remember on my trips to Mexico some kids would make fun of me.  Mostly because my Spanish wasn’t perfect.  “How dare she not know how to speak perfect Spanish,” I would imagine the kids saying. “Mira, ya se cree gringa.”  It made me so sad.  I wanted to fit in.  They were my people … so I thought.  And I wanted to be part of what they were.  Fortunately, my cousins always had my back.  If it was not for them I probably would not have enjoyed my trips as much.  But we had so much fun.  I loved venturing out with them and being free to walk the streets without adult supervision.  Going to las tienditas down the streets to buy all kinds of candies and meeting neighborhood kids.  So many cool memories that over power my negative experiences.  But still, the rejection was pretty saddening–and lingers in my memory.

You see, it wasn’t my decision that my parents and abuelos migrated to the states.  And it’s definitely not my fault I was born in the United States.  It is what it is.  I love who I am– a MEXICAN-AMERICAN.  I embrace it as a culture of it’s own.  There is no way that anyone can hold it against me that I am not a full blown Mexicana (whatever that means to them).  I wasn’t born there.  I never lived there.  I only visited in the summers.  And there is no way anyone can hold it against me that I am not like the gringo next door who ONLY speaks English.  How can that even be?  My ancestors are from Mexico.

So when I get comments from people calling me “Malinche,” or “sell out” for speaking English during traditional Mexican cooking, 010006-MexAmerican or saying my Spanish sucks (among other things), it does hurt a little.  Because it’s not something that I do on purpose to shun my people or because I’m embarrassed, like some say I am.  How they come up with that is beyond me.  If I was embarrassed, why would I even let the whole world into our lives?  Those who know me personally know that I love my roots, I love who I am and I embrace it all.

I’m sure a lot of you know that as each generation passes  a lot of things get lost.  Things like language, customs, traditions and even food.  So this is why I continue to make videos with my Abuela.  For people like me who want to remember the little things that are easily forgotten.  People like my kids who have a dad who is 3rd generation and has learned Spanish in school.  For people who have never visited Mexico but wish they could have.  People who miss their Abuela’s cooking and never learned how to make it.  People who never got a chance to know what it’s like to embrace their Mexican side.  Bi-racials who didn’t grow up with their Mexican family.  And for those who just love some real Traditional Mexican cooking.  These videos are for me, my kids, their kids.  For you, your kids and their kids.  Food always brings us back to specific times and places because it opens up all our senses. After all, memories are made in the kitchen.

For those who have allowed us into your home and have embraced us as we are, and as I am, I say thank you.  I appreciate all your beautiful messages.  For you, I will continue to publish our videos.

Being Mexican-American is a beautiful thing and I don’t apologize for it.

———

YouYube ha sido una aventura muy impresionante y un reto par mi vida y la de mi Abuela.  Las dos hemos aprendido mucho sobre muchas cosas.  Curiosamente, nunca pense que mi Abuela, a su edad, estaria pensando en los suscriptores de YouTube, Instagram y Facebook.  A veces me pregunto cuanto sera demasiado para compartir acerca de nosotros?  Sin embargo, nos hemos puesto para que el mundo ea y apesar del riesgo, hemos tenido una respuesta muy positiva.  En nuestro tiempo libre juntas, trato de leer tantos mensajes como pueda y ella disfruta de escuchar los que todos ustedes tienen que decir.  Pero junto con los comentarios positivo, viene la realidad de que siempre habra’ comentarios negativos.  Lamentablemente, los pocos comentarios negativos que nosotros recibimos son generalmente los que afectan mas.  Creto que esos comentarios negativos vienen de personas que realmente no saben mucho acerca de lo que estamos haciendo y por que’ es que grabamos los videos.  También creo que dicen cosas negativas porque no saben muy bien mi hisotria.  Y dogo “mi historia” porque yo soy la productora del show.  Y soy la que originalmente quería documentar las recetas de mi Abuela, así que aunque estos videos son sobre Abuela, reflejan mi proposito.

Si usted nos ha estado siguiendo por un tiempo, usted sabe que la Abuela es una inmigrante de Mexico.  Mi madre también nacio en Mésico y vino a los Estados como un adolescente.  Por suerte, tuve padres que aún tenían profundas raíces en México, por lo que tuvimos el privilegio de visitar a la familia cada año.  Me encantó nuestros viajes a la tierra madre-visitando a sus familias, tanto la de de mi madre y el lado de mi padre.  Y por supuesto, yo tenía a mis Abuelos quien vivíeron muy cerca de nosotros por una gran duración de mi infancia. así que se podría decir que “Nunca estuve demasiado lejos de mis raíces”.  Yo no me recuerdo estar avergonzada de quien yo era, yo o incluso de donde mi familia era.  Ser Mexicana nunca fue una cosa vergonzosa.  De hecho, mis padre ni siquiera me permitía hablar en Ingles en casa.  Especialmente si visitabamos a Mexico, no se nos permitiá hablar en Inglés con mis hermanos.  Me daban el “Ojo de Aguila”, y aveces algo peor.

Recuerdo que en mis viajes a México algunos niños se burlaban de mi.  Sobre todo porque mi español no era perfecto.  “Como se que no habla bien el Español siendo Mexicana?”  me imagino a los niños diciendo, “Mira, ya se cree gringa.”  Me hizo tan triste.  Yo quería pertenecer.  Eran mi gente–eso era lo que yo pensaba.  Queria ser parte de lo que ellos eran.  Afortunadamente, mis primas siempre me respaldaban.  Si no fuera por ellas, probablemente no habría disfrutado de mis viajes.  Pero nos divertimos much.  Me encantaba salir con ellas a por las calles para comprar todo timpo de dulce y tambien conocer niños del barrio.  Tantos recuerdos bonitos que sobrepasan mis experiencias negativas.  Pero aún asi, el rechazo era bastante triste-y perdura en mi memoria.

No fue mi decisión de que mis padres y abuelos enmigraran a los Estados.  Y definitivamente no es mi culpa que yo nací en Los Estados Unidos.  Asi fue mi destino.  Me encanta lo que soy–una Mexicana Americana.  Yo lo tomo com una cultura en si mismo.  No hay porque acusarme que yo no soy una Mexicana de Mexico.  Yo no nací alla.  Yo nunca viví alla.  Sólo estuve viajaba para Mexico en los veranos.  Y no hay porque condenarme de que yo no soy como el gringo de al lado que sólo habla Inglés.  Como puede ser?  Mis antepasados son de México, no yo.  Y no lo digo por orgullo.  Lo digo porque es la realidad.

Así que cuando recio comentarios de la gente que me llama “Malinche”, o “vendida” por hablar Inglés mientras cocinamos comida tradicional Mexicana., o cuando dicen que mi español es horrible (entre otras cosas), me duele un poco.  Porque no es algo que hago con el propósito de huir de mi gente o porque me da vergüenza, como algunos dicen.  Por que dejar entrar a todo el mundo en nuestras vidas?  Los que me conocen personalmente saben que amo a mis ráices, me encanta lo que soy.

Estoy segura que muchos de ustedes saben que con cada generación que pasa una gran cantidad de cosas se pierden.  Cosas como el lenguaje, las costumbres, las tradiciones y hasta la comida.  Asi que es por eso que sigo haciendo ideos con mi Abuela.  Para la gente com yo, que quieren recordar las pequeñas cosas que se ovidan fácilmente.  La gente com mis niños que tienen un padre que es tercera generación en E.E.U.U y que ha tenido que aprender español en la escuela.  Para las personas que nunca han visitado a Mexico, pero que deseaban visitar.  las personas que extrañan las comidas de sus abuelas y nunca aprendieron cómo hacerlas.  Las personas que nunca tuieron la oportunidad de saber lo que se siente al aceptar su lado Mexicano.  Gente birraciales que no creció con su familia Mexicana y ahora buscan de saber.  Y para aquellos que les encanta un abuena cocina Mexicana.  Estos videos son par mí, para mi hijos y los hijos de mi hijos.  Para ustedes, sus hijos y los hijos de sus hijos.  La cocina siempre nos trae du vuelta a tiempos y lugares especificos porque abre todos nuestros sntidos.  Después de todo, los recuerdos se hacen en la cocina.

Para los que nos han permitido en su casa y nos han aceptado como somos… como soy, les doy las gracias!  Agradezco todos sus mensajes hermosos.  Para ustedes voy a seguir pulicando nuestros videos.

Ser Mexicana-Estadounidense es una cosa hermosa y no me disculpo por ello.

Advertisements

Both of my parents were born in Mexico and at a very young age they entered the work force.  We all know that getting an education in Mexico can be hard if you are not part of the elite group.  But times are definitely changing.  I do see many young people in Mexico getting the opportunity for higher education these days.

I remember when I was a kid and old enough to stay home alone and watch my 2 siblings (well not really alone because family always lived in our back house), I would have so much fun.  My dad would go to work at 3:30 pm and my mom wouldn’t be home till 6ish.  3 hours of bliss!

My dad was a very strict man.  He thought our school homework wasn’t enough.  He said the education system wasn’t as good as all the other countries and we were behind everyone else.  So he would give us homework on top of our school homework.  I remember having to learn my multiplications in 1st grade, and the US map, Mexican map, and South American map in 3rd grade.  In 5th grade I had to learn the European map .  Not just the states but the capitals.  Not only that, but I also had to read in Spanish for a period of time and then read it back to him the next day with out error.  I learned to quickly memorize things using my short term memory.  So please don’t ask me any of this information now.  LOL  Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, Peru, Chile Brazil, Uruguay, Paraguay… LOL I still remember.  Anyway, that was the ugly part about staying alone.  I guess it taught me responsibility because if I didn’t have my stuff memorized by the next day I would get a butt whoopin con la chancla!  Actually, I wish it was the chancla.

The bliss came when we would eat whatever we wanted, watch as much tv as we wanted, and played with our neighbors as much as we wanted.  3 hours seemed like a very long time in those days.  I remember taking sandwich bread and packing on the ice cream.  Anyone else ever do that?  My mom had gazillions of purses and they all had tons of change.  Those purses were everywhere.  I would stick my hand in them and it was like Christmas morning.  I would either ride my bike to the panaderia or send my brother to go bring us a stash of junk food (Now & Later of all flavors, chocolate, chile saladitos, and chips).  This was almost a daily ritual.  The other activity was T.V. Oooooooh I loved watching cartoons!  I was willing to get a beating from not memorizing my states just to watch T.V. until my dad caught on.  So he did something about it.  He would take and hide the T.V. wire.   It taught me how to be sneaky and get away with it.  LOL I would find that wire and enjoy my usual shows.  Until one day he wondered why the T.V. was hot to the touch without a wire.  Ooops!  Got caught!  He stopped taking the wire off and would just disconnect it and coil it in different directions and pass it through different things.  I figured out that it was boobie trapped.  Because of that, I developed a photographic memory. LOL  I still managed to watch it.

It’s obvious that my parents wanted a better life for me, for us.  They wanted to make sure that our future wouldn’t be as hard for us as it was for them.  They still managed to instill in us a work ethic and a drive to do more than is expected.  I always tried my best even thought most of the times it wasn’t enough.  Not sure if it was for fear or because somewhere along those lines, their speeches, advice and example worked on me.  But both my brother and I have managed to make something of this life.  It’s not easy being a kid from immigrant parents.  There is so much we have to go through to succeed but because of their hard work, dedication and drive to make a better future for us, our struggle has been lessened.

So, Mexican-Americans, Chicanos, Latinos, Hispanics:  Do your parents (ancestors) a favor, honor them with how you live.  Make something of yourself.  Stop wasting time feeling sorry for yourself or blaming others for where you are at today.  Don’t let their struggle be in vain.  Don’t let their fight for you be wasted.  Make them proud.  I doubt they did it just for themselves.  If not, then do it for you and your generations to come.

 

20141014-152142-55302351.jpg

Me on the left. 😉