Culture for Girls

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Los Tamales

Ah, the tamal, that wonderful scrumptious delicacy that is commonly prepared during Christmas, fiestas and holidays were once called Utah by the Mayans. Tamales date all the way back to the early 8000 B.C. pre-colombian history and are credited to the Mayan and Aztec civilization. As the story goes, tamales were invented from the need… Read more

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Family Time Instead of a Party

A quinceañera is a celebrated tradition that transitions a young girl into a woman. It is marked with a festive celebration to commemorate a girl’s 15th birthday. It is generally celebrated in Mexico and other Latin American countries where Catholicism is rampant. It is a Latina’s very own sweet sixteen. Celebrating a quinceañera A quinceañera includes a mass… Read more

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Danza Folklorica

Danza Folklorica, also known as Ballet Folklorico, is a beautiful Mexican dance that reflects heritage and tradition. There are many types of dances from different states throughout Mexico that highlight the culture of that region through unique costumes and music. The folklore, costumes, colors, steps and many other elements represent  Mexican culture. Fabiola Méndez Chaparro, dances Ballet Folklorico,… Read more

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Why Are You Proud to be Latina?

The reasons to be proud as a Latina are endless with a culture full of rich traditions and history. These Latinitas editors and readers share their top reasons to be proud of their culture. I’m proud to be Latina because of what an amazing culture I have. My culture has rich food, spectacular dances, a… Read more

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Holiday Traditions Around Latin America

As the holidays approach and the frenzy to buy the perfect gift for your loved ones starts to creep up on you, it is important to take the time and reflect on what the season really means. It is also equally important to remember that as Latinas, we have our own special sazon to the… Read more

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History of Our Lady of Guadalupe

La Virgen de Guadalupe is one of the most praised saints in the Hispanic culture. She has risen to become the symbol of Mexico, and her basilica in Mexico is visited by millions every year. The Virgin’s iconic image can be seen in thousands of churches, homes and even city murals. Her legend is a miraculous… Read more

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Day of the Dead

Red, yellow, pink, white, black, purple and orange cut into intricate shapes decorate many Mexican homes and altars during what is known as the Day of the Dead or Día de los Muertos in Spanish. This unique colorful day celebrates family members who have passed away embracing la muerte (death). What are all these colorful… Read more

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Milagros

A milagro can directly be translated to “miracle” in English. For many Latinos, those shiny charms are meant for more than just decorations. These religious folk charms have traditionally been used throughout Latina America for healing purpose or as religious offerings. Early accounts of milagros tell the story of Hernan Cortez of Spain who offered… Read more

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Embracing Your Culture

As strong Latinas, we should take it upon ourselves to strengthen our culture in ourselves so we can easily spread it to our surroundings. Sometimes it may feel like measures to stifle our culture are being taken more often than not. Although it is sad and unfortunate, we can help promote our culture by embracing… Read more

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Traveling to Spain

During Spring Break 2012, I was given the opportunity to travel to Sevilla, Spain and spend a whole week there. Here’s a quick summary of Spain in my eyes. The People I arrived at Spain at around 12 o’clock p.m. CEST, meaning it was around 3 in the afternoon back in Illinois. I was so… Read more

Mi Barrio for Girls

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Mi Barrio: Houston, TX

Written by: April Age: 24 City: Houston, TX US What do you like to do for fun there? I love Houston, TX. It is not only a big city, but there is always that opportunity to grow. There are many opportunities to grow academically. Even if you begin small you’ll soon realize many Latina girls… Read more

Latina Beat

La Union, New Mexico

Vea este artículo en español aquí A quick twenty-minute drive from El Paso, Texas lies a town so small that, like the saying goes, if you blink, you’ll miss it. Home to under 300 residents, La Union, New Mexico boasts a history and culture as lavish as that of a major city. It has a… Read more

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Mi Barrio: San Antonio, Texas

I was thrilled to plan my first ever road trip to San Antonio, home of the Alamo and Girl in a Coma, an all-Latina punk rock band. All I needed was a full tank of gas, my trusty map, and a video camera to get started exploring the city. As I entered the city limits… Read more

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My Town Pasadena, TX

I grew up in Pasadena, a city on the outskirts of Houston. My childhood memories make my hometown so special to me. Pasadena is where I had friends and family within walking distance, and I first learned how to drive on its streets. There is a majority of Hispanics who live in Pasadena, so people… Read more

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Summer of Sunshine in San Diego

The roar of car engines in the school parking lot faded as the fleet of cars belonging to my fellow classmates drove off into the westbound sun. It was the final class day for the school year, and summer lay before us like an unexplored frontier. It was vast, inviting and pleasantly unknown. I was… Read more

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Mi Barrio Brownsville, TX

Name: Mylan Torres Hometown: Brownsville, Texas Current city: Austin, Texas Were you nervous at all before you moved? Why? Yes, of course! I was really nervous since I’d be living on my own and so far away from home. I’m extremely close to my family; I really had no idea (and didn’t think) I’d be… Read more

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Center Point, TX

As the Guadalupe River weaves its way through Center Point, nature calls to the citizens of the small rural town with the approximate population of 1,000 residents. Center Point grows famous with saying, “everyone knows everything about everyone.” Center Point proceeds with one post office and a bed ‘n’breakfast, two gas stations, and three resident-owned… Read more

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Southeast Austin

Many people stereotype Southeast Austin and consider it to be the “ghetto” part of town, but many people don’t realize that by stereotyping a community, they are missing out on the really good opportunities to meet new people and have fun. As a resident, I know Southeast Austin provides many resources and opportunities to its… Read more

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Mi Barrio – El Bronx

I’m from the Bronx in New York City!! It is a complicated lifestyle, but you’ll make it. Even though I left to have a better life, I still love New York City because it is beautiful!! There are beautiful people everywhere.  There are a lot of fun things to do.  It is a blast.   There… Read more

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My Neighborhood: Miami, Florida

What do you like to do for fun there? Stroll on the beach, dance at the many Latin clubs, and have dinner with friends. What makes your hometown special? Miami has a unique mix of Latin cultures. Although Cubans are the majority, Colombians, Nicaraguans, Venezuelans, Brazilians, Dominicans, (just to name a few) are catching up!… Read more

Mundo News for Girls

Our writers are working on new articles, check back soon!

My Family for Girls

Latinitas, Mother Daughter Workshop

Stepparent: Friend or Foe?

When some people are born they are conceived into a world with two wonderful people as parents. You grow up thinking they love each other, are role models, and believe they will stay together and live happily every after while helping you through  every big moment in life. What do you do when you find out… Read more

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Speaking Spanish at Home

Senator Ralph Yarborough filed the Bilingual Education Act in 1968, which was aimed to remove the language barrier to an equal education. This was later approved by Congress.  Prior to that, Mexican Americans in Texas, like my mother, were 10 years old at the time.  My mother  had grown up speaking Spanish as her primary language.  When… Read more

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My Mamá is My Hero

Mothers come in all shapes, sizes and personalities. Some go through a rough childhood, only to overcome terrible obstacles and raise their daughters in a harmonious household. Their daughter’s childhood is not affected by what these mothers went through. These mothers are the women that young girls call mamí. In this sense, young girls consider… Read more

Latina Mother and Daughter - Latinitas

Latinitas Dia de Las Madres Contest Winners

We were especially touched this year by the quality of entries to Latinitas’ 2012 Dia de las Madres writing contest.   Our writers were as young as 9 years old and as old as high school.  Girls presented “great mothers” in their lives through writing. My Mom by Celie Contreras My mom is special to me… Read more

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Honoring Our Loved Ones

Our Latinitas share their memories about loved ones who have passed away. My Tio Obie passed away a few months ago due to an illness. He was always in a party mood. They always had coca cola at parties because it was his favorite drink. Once when we were playing rock band, he started to… Read more

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Three Generations

One of my favorite memories growing up was when I was a little girl sitting at the kitchen table looking up at my mom and grandmother as they made tamale. I remember the masa leaving globs of off-white goo on the table, while everyone around the table shared their stories, memories and happy tales. Now,… Read more

Passport for Girls

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Passport to Puerto Rico

by Ashley, age 16 Hometown: Mayaguez, Puerto Rico What makes my hometown special: My hometown is special because it is small and big at the same time. I could easily get lost in my hometown, but I know I will always find a way back home. Everything is so familiar to me, even the things… Read more

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Quiz: Think You Know Latin America?

Hispanic Heritage Month may have ended on October 16th, but it doesn’t mean we cannott celebrate all year long. So why not celebrate your Hispanic heritage by brushing up on your knowledge of Hispanic geography, culture and history. How much do you know? Check it out below. 1. What is the largest Island in the… Read more

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Voyage to Brazil

I would’ve never thought that I’d actually get selected to travel to Brazil to study its culture. For months, the applicants for the traveling program with Brotherhood/Sistersol did projects and participated in different activities to see who would be a good fit to go to Brazil. I knew that once I was chosen, my life… Read more

Spain

Traveling to Spain

During Spring Break 2012, I was given the opportunity to travel to Sevilla, Spain and spend a whole week there. Here’s a quick summary of Spain in my eyes. The People I arrived at Spain at around 12 o’clock p.m. CEST, meaning it was around 3 in the afternoon back in Illinois. I was so… Read more

Acapulco Mexico

Passport to Acapulco, Mexico

  Acapulco serves not only as a popular tourist attraction, but as a major sea port that runs through the Panama Canal. Acapulco is known by many, but what hidden treasures it holds have yet to be discovered by tourist. In Acapulco, the history is timeless, the culture is captivating, the food is delicious, and… Read more

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Passport to Acapulco

Population: Approximately 616,000 Language: Spanish Climate: Varies from tropical to desert Religion: Roman Catholic Economy: Agriculture, Industry, Tourism In the state of Guerrero on the Pacific Coast of Mexico, lies the beautiful and mesmerizing Acapulco, Mexico. Surrounded by clear blue waters and the Sierra Madre to the east, Acapulco serves not only as a popular… Read more

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Passport to Dominican Republic

One of the most enchanting places to visit in the Caribbean is the Dominican Republic. Located on the island of Hispaniola and east of Haiti, the Dominican Republic is a beautiful country with rich culture. It was first inhabited by Taino natives until the arrival of Christopher Columbus in 1492. Santo Domingo, the country’s capital,… Read more

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Passport to Puerto Rico

Facts About Puerto Rico: Location – South of Florida National Anthem – “La Borinquena” National Bird – Stripe-Headed Tanager National Flower – Puerto Rican Hibiscus Tourism Motto – ¡Puerto Rico lo hace major! (Puerto Rico does it better!) Currency – Same as U. S. Dollar (Puerto Rico is part of the U. S.) History: Puerto… Read more

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Passport to Mexico City

Interesting fact: The air in Mexico City used to be among the cleanest but changed to the most polluted in the span of a generation. Historical fact: Mexico City was founded in 1521 by Hernán Cortés (a Spanish conquistador) in the middle of a lake on the ruins the Aztec Empire. Famous figure or entertainer… Read more

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Passport to Puerto Rico

As the seat belt sign turns on and the airplane begins to descend, the island floats into view, first, the clear turquoise water and the light sandy beaches and next, the lush vegetation and rolling peaks and valleys of the inland mountains peak through the clouds. No wonder Puerto Ricans claim the name “the island… Read more

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