A blended family in a blended city

I’m Donna Queza, a 28-year-old business owner from Los Angeles, California, USA. I was born in England (my mom is from there) and raised here in the U.S. where my dad was born. My father was African American and my mom is Caucasian, so I’ve always been in a multi-ethnic household. I’ve always identified with both cultures and I hate when I’m forced to choose just one. Both ethnicities and countries are a big part of who I am!

My friends typically describe me as sassy (that’s been the word people have used since I was two) and I like to think of myself as a hard worker who loves to have fun with friends and family. My favorite person to spend time with is my husband John. He’s a police office here in Los Angeles. He’s Filipino. His parents moved here just before he was born, and he’s never had a chance to visit the country.

A typical day in the Queza house involves both of us working (me in my in-home office, running my marketing consultancy) and John at the LAPD training division. When we’re back together in the afternoon, we try to cook at home and spend time playing tennis and catching up on some TV. Living in Los Angeles give us access to so many cultures, events and so much great food (which makes cooking at home a little difficult). We are lucky to be close to many diverse communities.

Both John and I exclusively speak English (although, John knows a few choice words in Tagalog) and, growing up and working in Southern California, we can both speak and understand some words of Spanish.

In addition to our own diverse backgrounds, I would say that the Mexican culture is also a big part of our lives. In Los Angeles there are many Mexican influences all around. We both love Mexican food (we are really spoiled by some great restaurants around our home) and we get to take part in many festivities outside of our own cultures.

One of the greatest things about living in a blended family in a blended city is combining cultures. Each year, our Thanksgiving tables have Filipino traditions (like lumpia and pansit), as well as southern specialties passed down from my father. In the 10 years that John and I have been together, we’ve learned a lot from one another’s cultures and we look forward to one day having children to share our blended traditions with.

Read more:
Different customs, one unique identity
Are some cultures more kid-friendly than others?
MeetBryan from the Philippines

About the author

Lucy (Liz) Chatburn
Lucy is English and first ventured out of the UK she was 19. Since then she has lived in 4 different countries and tried to see as much of the world as possible. She loves learning languages, learning about different cultures and hearing different points of view.
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