Local Author Touches Children in the Aftermath of Hurricanes Irma and
When speaking with Terry Padilla, author of "Latin American Foods," it is clear early
on how very important family is in her life.
Miami, FL (USA), March 29th, 2018 -- When speaking with Terry Padilla, author of "Latin
American Foods," it is clear early on how very important family is in her life. Her two-year labor
of love titled “Latin American Foods” is a children’s book that follows the journey of the Garcia
family who were forced to leave their homeland of Puerto Rico due to devastation caused by
Hurricanes Irma and Maria.
The family relocates to Orlando and as they adjust to the many changes in their lives, the Garcia
family embraces their native Latin culture.
“When faced with unexpected challenges ones first reaction is usually to hold onto what’s dear
to them,” said Padilla. “I wanted to emphasize the closeness of family and how the Garcia’s
took comfort in the culinary experiences of their native Latin culture as they embarked on their
new life in America.”
Terry’s multi-cultural background and her experiences living in Central America inspired her to
write “Latin American Foods.”
While growing up in Managua, she witnessed people without food, shelter and clothing. Those
images are still fresh in her mind today and provided added inspiration for her book.
“Basic necessities such as water, food and shelter, should never be taken for granted,” said
Padilla. “And Hurricanes Irma, Maria and Harvey were a reminder to all of us of how important
these basic necessities are to one’s survival.”
“Latin American Foods” was illustrated by Tony Mendoza, a Cuban-American artist who Terry
had met a few years ago while attending the Coconut Grove Art Festival. She was so impressed
by his work that she immediately asked him to illustrate her book with the hope that her words
combined with his whimsical illustrations would offer youngsters easy to understand
descriptions of some of the dishes that the two of them were all too familiar with as children.
As the book was nearing completion, life for many changed dramatically! Hurricanes Irma and
Maria hit Florida, the Caribbean and, tragically Puerto Rico. These hurricanes inspired Terry to
rewrite the story and incorporate a fictional family, Jose and Maria Garcia and their son Carlos,
who owned a bed and breakfast in Puerto Rico. Maria Garcia is originally from Cuba, and loved
to cook traditional dishes.
Depicting old clothes hanging to dry in the background when referencing Ropa Vieja or
including an iron on the Cuban sandwich illustration since it is traditionally pressed with a hot
iron are just a few of the images that stimulate the readers’ imagination.
Terry remembers the time when she asked Tony to draw a beautiful, colorful rooster with wild
feathers and have the rooster painting. While puzzled by the request Tony complied, creating
Terry’s favorite illustration that represents a dish she remembers all too well as a child growing
up in Nicaragua, Gallo Pinto (rice and beans). She wanted to depict the rooster painting
because gallo means rooster and pinto is a spotted rooster.
Born and raised in Managua, Nicaragua, Terry moved to Miami as a teen and attended Coral
Gables High School. She graduated from the University of Florida’s School of Journalism &
Communications earning a bachelor’s degree in Advertising with a minor in Business
Her book, “Latin American Foods” is dedicated to her husband Ivan, a fantastic cook and her
father, who was the Secretary of Agriculture in Nicaragua during the 1970s. Terry resides in
Miami, Florida with her husband and two children. She previously served on the board of the
Epilepsy Foundation of Florida for 10 years and currently volunteers her time and energy with
the Day of Caring for Breast Cancer Awareness. Terry is a 12-year Breast Cancer survivor!
The book is available for $12.95 paperback and $7.99 Kindle on Amazon and Barnes and Nobles.
A portion of the proceeds from the sale of the book will be donated to Day of Caring for Breast
Cancer Awareness. You can contact Terry Sendelmann-Padilla at 786-281-3737 or via e-mail at
[email protected] Follow her on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.
Press & Media Contact:
Kiskinis Communications, Inc.
13663 SW 102 Court,
Miami, FL 33176 - USA