Sheila: Staying Connected to Your Cultural Roots through Family & Food
Sheila is a passionate food photographer and stylist blogger. A Minnesota girl whose established roots in North Carolina. Living away from family--life keeps her on her toes as a med school wife and stay at home mom (SAHM).
Her creativity is expressed through cooking, sharing recipes, food styling, and blogging about Hmong food.
Her love for cooking surfaced when she met the love of her life, Sam because there’s always a new unknown that requires decisions that will change the trajectory of his career and therefore the family. Also, being away from home made her homesick and cooking soon became an outlet for her to stay connected to her culture and home, which is where she birthed her blog, Sheiladipity.
Sheila loves cooking for these reasons:
- The people she loves. “It’s hard labor sometimes, but it’s one way I like to express love & appreciation to others.”
- Makes her feel closer to home and allows her to embrace her Hmong roots. “When I cook certain Hmong dishes, it takes me back to the memories with my family. As I’ve transitioned into a new chapter in my life, I think of memories I want to build with my husband and newborn baby, Jordan.”
- Eating with great company! “I love the way food always tastes better when you’re eating in the company of family & friends.”
She looks forward to sharing a space where her guests feel inspired to try new things, embrace uncertainty, and take chances.
Furthermore, as she enters this new exciting chapter in her life as a new mom she would like to expand her blog to share a little more about herself, including her mom life.
Listen to the entire Goldyn Hour conversation on our IGTV
A few highlights from our conversation with Sheila:
Q: What are your values?
Some of my values are family, friendship, and adventure. Family has always been important to me. Especially now that I'm a mom. I've always been close to my parents and especially my siblings. I believe that who we are and how our identity is shaped is from the home. As a mom, I want to be able to create a healthy and happy space for my family, and being able to raise them to become independent, responsible kind individuals. As for friendship, it's important to have a social support outside of your family. In life, no matter how we meet our friends through school, through work, through hobbies, they're some of the people you're going to make incredible memories with.
Q: What type of food makes you the most nostalgic or at home?
Egg rolls. I think a reason why...one they taste great. I love egg rolls because I have so many memories making egg rolls with my family...extended family. At home, we don't make egg rolls often, but when we do, we try to make as much as we can. So the girls would make the filling and rolling. The guys would fry them.
Q: What is the meaning behind your blog name, Sheiladipity?
Sheiladipity stems from serendipity. The definition means to accidentally stumble upon something good. And so for example, you're doing laundry and you accidently find a $50 bill in your pocket. The word has always stuck out to me and I love the meaning. So maybe I can put two and two together and that's how Sheiladipity was created. Right now the current content is food--food photography, food styling, and I share recipes that are dear to me. I definitely didn't want to limit it to just food which is why it's Sheiladipity. I definitely hope to expand my blog--I would like to create more mom content.
Q: How would you describe Hmong food in 3 words?
Family for sure. Because we all like to eat together whether it's a big or small meal. Comfort/Homey food, & unique.