Elsie Contreras-Gonzalez

Aug 01, 11 Elsie Contreras-Gonzalez

City you live in:
I live in Edna, TX, a small town in Southeast Texas.

I speak English and Spanish. I grew up speaking more Spanglish and Tex-Mex, so I normally use this when speaking to mi familia y amigos. I became more fluent in Spanish while I studied in college and immersed myself in the company of more Spanish speakers.

Favorite Latin food you can’t live without:
I absolutely love beef and cheese enchiladas, made with red tortillas< with a chile con carne gravy to top it. No Mexican plate is complete without arroz y frijoles refritos. I also love frijoles a la charra with a spicy jalapeno flavor.

What is your Latina contradiction?
I am a third-generation Mexican-American; I don’t have direct ties to Mexico. A lot of Latinos ask me, “¿De donde eres?” and when I respond, “Soy de aqui, de Tejas, de los Estados Unidos,” , surprise strikes them: “¿y tus papas, de donde son?” – “Lo mismo.” Since I speak Spanish and love all things Mexican from em>mariachi to the language, some people expect me to be the offspring of Mexican immgirants.

When you think of Latin culture, what are the first words you think of?
Familia y tradicion. These two words define my culture because I have been surrounded by both throughout my life, and I plan to pass on these two values to my children as well.

What is your ethnicity? Or where is your family from?
Mexican-American. My parents were both born here in Texas, and my paternal bisabuelos came from Piedras Negras, Coahuila, Mexico.

Latina? American? Both?
Latina and Mexican-American. I consider myself American by birth and Mexican by upbringing and by choice.

Favorite Latin artist or music?
I enjoy all types of Latin music, but especially Tejano, Regional Mexican, Tropical, Norteno, Bachata, Salsa, Merengue, and Latino Pop. My favorite singer is Jenni Rivera, “La Reina de Reinas.” I can identify with her music, and I find the lyrics empowering.

iPhone or BlackBerry?
I just upgraded to the iPhone 4, and I enjoy the availability of apps and the convenience of having the Internet with me all the time.

How do you describe your style?
I dress to the occasion. I am most comfortable in a pair of jeans with a nice blouse, and I like to wear a big cross on my neck. For work, I like leggings with cute dresses. For church, I am traditional– I do not wear jeans, I wear dresses, and I leave the chanclas at home. I try to dress according to the season, for example, bright colors for the summer and dark colors in the winter.

What is your favorite Latin restaurant?
There is a Mexican restaurant in Victoria, TX called La Hacienda, and I enjoy how tender their fajitas are, and the salsa has the right amount of sabor. My husband also loves their mole, so we go there frequently.

What media in English and/or Spanish do you prefer/consume, as in what magazines, newspapers, TV shows, etc?
I prefer reading over tv. I like Latina and Poder by Hispanic. I also enjoy Family Circle, and Better Homes and Gardens, and more recently, Parents. I do watch a web tv show every week: Los Americans, starring Esai Morales and Lupe Ontiveros.

[name]Elsie Contreras-Gonzalez[/name]
[description]I consider myself American by birth and Mexican by upbringing and by choice[/description]

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