Multiracial Mysteries

If you are a teen or know a teen.. check out Rachel and Rachael. These Canadian multiracial teenagers have created a site, Multiracial Mysteries, to help them and other multiracial teens deal with “everyday stresses of being different from ‘the norm'”. Their blog discusses myths, stereotypes, and experiences of multiracial teens.  Rachel and Rachael-Keep up the good work sharing the stories of the multiracial youth!

Little Miss Multiracial

Children’s pageants have gained popularity with reality shows like Toddlers in Tiaras. Little Miss Pageants have been around for years, and off shoots of the pageant franchise have found a place for specific racial categories (Miss Black –Insert State; Miss Hispanic –Insert State; etc).  Which pageant is best for those who are Multiracial?

Jakiyah McKoy won Little Miss Hispanic Delaware, but now there is question as to if she can hold the title due to having to prove her Latina heritage.

See the story here:


Congrats Mixed Up Clothing!

Congratulations to Sonia Kang founder of Mixed Up clothing.  Her children’s clothing line that focuses on “building friendships through fabrics” has been nominated for a Red Tricycle 2013 Totally Awesome Award. Winners will be announced Sept 1st.  Sonia and Mixed Up clothing has been featured on the Today show and has a new collaboration with Chocolate Me (written by Taye Diggs). Tia Mowry-Hardict clothes her son in Mixed Up clothing, you can find out more about where to get Mixed Up clothing at  Mixed Nation has teamed up with Mixed Up clothing for a giveaway.  Click here to enter to win:

Sonia and Mixed Up Clothing: Keep up the good work, sharing the mixed race story through your creative design of apparel for children.

Code Switching

NPR has a new blog this year called “Code Switch: Frontiers of Race, Culture and Ethnicity”!  This is their discussion of Code Switching

“In linguistics, “code-switching” means mixing languages or patterns of speech in conversation. But as our blog host Gene Demby explains: “We’re looking at code-switching a little more broadly. Many of us subtly, reflexively change the way we express ourselves all the time. We’re hop-scotching between different cultural and linguistic spaces and different parts of our own identities — sometimes within a single interaction.

“We decided to call this team Code Switch because much of what we’ll be exploring are the different spaces we each inhabit and the tensions of trying to navigate between them. In one sense, code-switching is about dialogue that spans cultures. It evokes the conversation we want to have here.””

Code Switch creates an interesting dialogue about the multiple roles we all play in society.  Check out their April 8th entry How Code-Switching Explains the World where Mixed comedians Key & Peele are referenced, and all their other interesting entries.


CP Chang on Stories of Interracial Relationships

Author and storyteller CP Chang speaks about the challenges of interracial relationships and the challenges of telling those stories.  CP is with the Chicago storytelling collective,2nd Story, and a contributor to the anthology, “Briefly Knocked Unconscious By A Low Flying Duck”.  Interviewed and produced by Andrew Yeh.

Word on the Street: Image, Language, Signage

Featuring work by mixed roots visual artist Laura Kina.

Opening Reception: Friday, June 14, 5:00 – 7:00 pm

Exhibit runs June 14-August 10, 2013

Columbia College Center for Book and Paper Arts
1104 South Wabash Ave. 2nd floor, Chicago, IL 60605
Kina_AllAmericanFood_Okinawa_2013Gallery Hours: Monday – Saturday 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

This exhibition considers the expressive potential of image and language through signage: how do artists use the visual and physical characteristics of signage, along with its often site specific cultural currency, to create realms of poetic or political meaning in public space or the gallery? With a focus on forms of permanent and ephemeral signage this exhibition will consider artists’ billboards, marquees, street signs, banners and posters among other forms of infrastructural signage.

For more info visit:

Pictured above is one of the new works I’ll be showing – Laura Kina “Okinawa – All American Food” 30 x 45 in., oil on canvas, 2013. See more new works at:

Jeff Chiba Stearns – Filmmaker

Jeff Chiba Stearns is a multi award-winning animation and documentary filmmaker.  Born in Kelowna, BC, of Japanese and European heritage, he graduated from the Emily Carr University of Art and Design with a degree in Film Animation in 2001. Soon after he founded Meditating Bunny Studio Inc., a Vancouver based boutique animation studio specializing in the creation of animated, documentary, and experimental films aimed at both children and adults that combine different philosophical and social elements together to create humorous, entertaining, and inspiring stories.  The studio also specializes in the creation of innovative stop motion and classically animated commercials and has created broadcast spots and viral videos for Sharpie, Anythink, Living Blueprint, Generali, Ministry of Health BC, 3M International, and Post-it Note.  His animated shorts, Kip and Kyle (2000), The horror of Kindergarten (2001), What Are You Anyways?(2005), Yellow Sticky Notes (2007), and Ode to a Post-it Note (2010) have screened in hundreds of film festivals around the world, garnered 32 awards, and broadcast on the CBC, Discovery Latin America, Sundance Channel, Movie Central, Encore Ave., Shaw, and Movieola.


This story of the first segregated prom at a Georgia high school has been eye opening to the continued segregation that happens in this country.

What I want to know is…where did the mixed teens go to prom all these years?  What other stories do you have of cases where societies monoracial boundaries, have left mixed youth having to choose one part of their entire self?

Everyday Stories of Folks Making A Difference

L.A. Pride Honoree Brendon Ayanbadejo with his daughter and MXRS co-founder Mark R. Edwards

L.A. Pride Honoree Brendon Ayanbadejo with his daughter and MXRS co-founder Mark R. Edwards

Movers & Shakers
Everyday Stories of Folks Working to Make a Difference

As the curator and a contributor to the Mixed Roots Stories’ section on Movers & Shakers I will be looking for stories and writing stories about folks informed by their multi-cultural/multi-racial narrative who transcend social convention to make an impact.

For example, Baltimore Ravens linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo (Nigerian & Irish-American) has been a strong vocal advocate for same-sex marriage.  This is a big deal for a pro football player from the notoriously homophobic world of professional sports to take such a position and it is a big deal for same-sex marriage advocates.  In fact, a Maryland state legislator – strongly opposed to same-sex marriage – wrote a letter to the Baltimore Ravens owner asking him to silence Brendon, because of the positive impact he was having on the issue.  In the end, the attempt by the legislator to silence Brendon backfired on him and today same-sex couples can marry in the State of Maryland.

Finally, to bring the point home, during interviews on his views of same-sex marriage, Brendon emphasized how is multi-ethnic and multi-cultural background raised his social consciousness to be aware of other folks and their struggles to have their stories heard.

These are the stories that I’m looking forward to reading and writing.  Lastly, please keep in mind that the Mover or Shaker does not have to be a celebrity.

As Black as We Wish To Be

Thanks to Steven F. Riley of for the heads up on this wonderful radio interview.  Host Al Letson and Producer Lu Olkowski visit a small town in Pike County, Ohio to learn more about a family that looks ‘white’ but some of whose family members strongly identify as ‘black.’