We had the good fortune of connecting with Yashira Franco and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Yashira, what inspires you?
There are many things that inspire me, like my family, my culture, nature, a meaningful conversation, even a dream but family is definitely my number one inspiration. Everything that I do, in one way or another, revolves around it. Whole Together Now started as an online recipe index for my girls, a place for them to have mommy’s recipes in one place. They were the ones who inspired me to create this page, and not only that, they are my most honest critics, they like to come up with ideas, experiment in the kitchen, they like to be involved and is what makes this more special.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Whole Together Now is like a hobby, a way for me to get creative and explore in the kitchen, and when I’m not cooking I’m writing. I’m a copywriter for various Hispanic ad agencies in the US since 2003, a career that challenges me and keeps my creative mind running. Everything that I’ve learned (and still learning) in this career has helped me on how I manage my blog. Being able to freelance, blog my cooking adventures and raising a family may look impossible for some but I believe that is a matter of learning how to balance things out and always prioritize what’s important, in my case, my family. This year Whole Together Now celebrated its first year, and as it keeps growing so is my passion and desire to keep blogging about my cooking adventures. I love sharing my Puerto Rican culture, I love sharing cooking tips, I love connecting with the community, and I think people see that. It’s incredible to see how this page is growing and improving, and that makes me very proud.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
There’s so much to do in Florida! One of my favorite places to visit is the Florida Keys, the trip is beautiful with a lot of shops and places to eat. I personally like to take friends an family to Key Largo’s The Fisheries, a small seafood market with an al fresco terrace where the whole family can enjoy fresh seafood and drinks. If you are in the Keys you have to have key lime pie, so after lunch or dinner a great place to enjoy all-things key lime is Blond Giraffe’s. If is late in the afternoon, you can travel a little south to Mile Marker 88 in Islamorada, this restaurant have a private beach and bay where you can enjoy live music, cocktails, yummy food, and end your day with a beautiful Florida sunset. Beach is always on the top of the list! There’s Miami Beach, Hollywood, Hallandale, or if they are feeling adventurous they can drive all the way to Sanibel Island. I’m Puerto Rican, and I can’t help to associate beach with my roots, so I personally after a day at the beach I like to stop at Kendall’s Isla del Encanto Restaurant for some authentic Puerto Rican food. They are the real deal, they have mofongo (mashed fried green plantains), alcapurrias (ground beef stuffed green plantain or yucca fritters), pastelón (ground beef stuffed yellow plantain lasagna), and more. If they are looking for places to have breakfast or brunch, Sergio’s Cafe have from Eggs Benedict Cuban style, cinnamon rolls with guava glazed to watermelon mimosas and their famous ham croquettes. Another favorite is Bistro Cafe in Downtown Miami, this place have awesome coffee and the best liege waffles in the city. Time flies when you are having fun, and the memories that stay with you forever are the ones that you spend with the ones you love. South Florida offers so much and makes it very easy for you to create those unforgettable moments.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
This a shoutout to two local and special businesses, N&M Photography and Pikis Events. These ladies are very talented and they really love what they do. Check them out!

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Image Credits
All the images are property of Whole Together Now.