If 'Elena of Avalor' Went to School, She Would Have an Arepa in Her Lunchbox
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Be it fate or sheer dumb luck, I only have two kids, and they're both boys. I say luck not because I wouldn't have wanted to have a daughter, but because I know for a fact that, if I did, my world would be pink and fuchsia, not unlike the world of Disney's newest princess, Elena of Avalor (or the world of Chloé and Cristina, the daughters of my good friends Rory and Ana Cristina).
I don't doubt that Elena Castillo Flores, who also has the honor of being Disney's first "Latina" princess, would have turned my house into a real-life Avalor, the kingdom that, according to the plot of the show, she started to rule at 16. At her tender age, the young heroine already saved her kingdom from an evil sorceress and dealt with other problems with inventiveness and diplomacy, reflecting all the best qualities of a leader: resilience, compassion, and the capacity to reflect on dire situations.
Despite not having a daughter myself, I can't escape Elena of Avalor's influence. This is a Disney princess who would have had an arepa in her lunchbox (or a gordita, or a pupusa) if she went to school like a normal kid.
Elena, with her cinammon-colored skin and dark hair like mine, even shares a part of my name (Enriqueta Elena, like my mom Gladys Elena, my niece Valeria Elena and my sister, Andreína Elena). She embodies the diversity of Hispanic culture, representing the Latinos and people of Hispanic origen living in the U.S. Finally, we have a princess to stand up for us.
|Abel and Amalia|
In a few days, Amalia will go back to school, and I'm sure she'll proudly show off her Elena of Avalor backpack, which is embroidered with gold sequins and a big Spanish guitar, an instrument Elena is fond of. There's also a lovely rose sewn on in red cloth, making this bag undeniable feminine and well-decorated. When I see things like this being made, it makes me want to be a little girl again.
I can imagine Amalia opening her lunch box to find an arepa: stuffed with butter and cheese (or ham and cheese), some fruit (probably grapes, orange or apple slices,) and some broccoli or carrot sticks. She will, of course, also have a juice box. I feel like just yesterday I was packing my children's lunches, and now they're little men in middle and high school. Regardless, they still take their brown paper bags to school, with homemade lunch made by mom.