Bilingual is Better

Today marks the beginning of the month-long celebration known as Hispanic Heritage Month. Today’s also the Independence Day of several countries in Central America, así que ¡Feliz Día a los salvadoreños, nicaragüenses, guatemaltecos, costarricences y hondureños!

Tomorrow it’ll be Mexico’s turn and on Sept. 18, it’ll be Chile’s Independence Day, so it obviously made huge sense to have this celebration of all things Hispanic during this time of the year.

Now, I’m not going to lie, I’ve never been a huge fan of Hispanic Heritage Month. For starters, I wasn’t really aware of its existence until a few years back. I honestly don’t remember it being a big celebration back in Miami where I grew up and spent almost 20 years of my life. Not in school and definitely not in my house. But now that I’m raising two first-generation American children in Denver, it seems to make more sense than ever for me to embrace this celebration and use it as an opportunity to expose my children to even more of our Latino culture than we already do on a daily basis.

Most of us are lucky enough to live in areas where there are tons of events in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month since the Latino population continues to spread throughout the entire country. But even if there aren’t any scheduled events in your town, you can still celebrate all things Hispanic right at home.

While there’s a couple of events my kids and I will be attending here in Denver, I still plan on doing the following three fun and easy activities with them at home:

MÚSICA

Music lovers that we all are, la música is a part of my family’s lives every single day. Whether we’re home or in the car, Pandora is always on. While we listen to lots of music in Spanish, we love others genres as well. But in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, we’ll be doing something a little bit different. Every day, starting today, my husband and I will showcase one Latino musical artist or group by playing several of their songs, talking about their genre of music and explaining a little bit about who they are.

From salsa to rock en español, the possibilities are endless! I can’t wait to get started with this one, but I don’t know who’ll go first. Will it be Rubén Blades, Olga Tañón, Luis Miguel, Alejandra Guzmán, Choc Quib Town, Susana Baca…?? I guess it’ll all depend on my mood!

POTLUCK

We have a diverse group of Latino friends who hail anywhere from the Dominican Republic all the way down to Chile and Argentina. My husband is Puerto Rican and I’m Peruvian, so we have almost every country in Latin America covered.

The idea is to have everyone bring the most representative dish from their country of origin. We’ll hopefully get a good balance of appetizers, entrees and desserts. Not to mention beverages, including a few “tragos,” like my mom’s famous Pisco Sour. While the idea is to expose our kids to different tastes within Latino cuisine, this will be a party for everyone and I’ll most likely organize it for the end of Hispanic Heritage Month.

¡Qué rico!

FAMILY TREE

I’ve been wanting to do a family tree forever. And while it’s probably going to take us a lot longer than the four weeks of Hispanic Heritage Month to complete this project, I think it’s a great time to at least get started. Because my dad is no longer with us, I think I’ll probably get started with his side of the family, so my children can learn more not only about him, but their great-grandparents as well.

There are tons of ways of doing a family tree, including scrapbooks and digital photo books. I’m not sure what we’ll be doing, but first I plan on enlisting the help of my children to gather photos, letters, newspaper clippings and even recipes relevant to our family’s history.

A good way to get started with a family tree, is to find out how and when your family got to the United States. I’m really looking forward to this project and can’t wait to see what my children and I end up discovering about our heritage!

How do you celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month?

{Photo via MSMP84}

Recent Posts