Adopt a Meal with Victoria Gautier
Monday, June 22, 2020
On Monday, June 22nd, we were joined by food blogger Victoria Gautier (aka @VIPig_) for a live Adopt a Meal session. Before pandemic protocol, Adopt a Meal programming consisted of providing warm meals to the Ronald McDonald House of South Florida, which houses the families of children who undergo treatment at nearby hospitals. We’ve continued the service, but with less volunteers and way more masks.
Our session on this day involved Gautier’s guide to making Carne Mechada, or Venezuelan shredded beef. Alongside her younger sister Fabiana in the kitchen of her Miami home, the 27-year-old foodie-turned-blogger extraordinaire seemed eager to prepare this homegrown dish and to share with us her path to the food industry.
While chopping a red onion in her handy Vidalia Chop Wizard, Gautier told the tale of how VIPig came to be.
“Each time we went on a family trip, I was the person in charge of picking the restaurant… So that’s where my passion started, and then everyone was like ‘Recommend me this in this city or that city,’ and I was doing word documents in the beginning, and then Instagram came along.”
In the process of making this Carne Mechada, we discussed blogging inspirations, how COVID-19 has affected blogging and the restaurant industry as a whole, and what it means to find success as a food blogger.
“It’s about the engagement you have with your followers on your platform. Successful means maybe having a smaller community that really likes you and engages with you. Building that engagement takes a lot of time; it’s very time consuming.”
On the topic of doing good, Gautier said a mantra she lives by is this: “Haz el bien sin mirar a quién,” which translates to: do good for others without looking at who you’re doing it for. This kind of motto inspires blind kindness–serving others is a way of life and everyone you meet should be feeling your goodwill.
And of course, like all great recipes, Victoria learned this one from a close family member–her aunt. To learn the full recipe (or to laugh at Jonathan’s pronunciation of “¡caliente!”) click the link at the top!
Craft Night with Modern Luxury Miami Publisher Liana Guilarte
Tuesday, June 23, 2020
On Tuesday, June 23rd, our virtual remix of Craft Night came to light in the afternoon on Instagram with Modern Luxury Miami publisher Liana Guilarte. This program usually operates in conjunction with children from The Lotus House Women’s Shelter as a blend of creative activities like arts & crafts, group games and sing-a-longs to some of the best children’s hits like “Baby Shark” and “Let It Go.” With our DGFG Live programming, we have redefined “craft” and turned this into an opportunity for wise professionals to share their craft, i.e. their passions and expertise. Clever, right?
The fabulous Guilarte is a friend of our Executive Director Jonathan Babicka, and with her knowledge of our work in the community, she explained just how much The Little Lighthouse Foundation aligns with Modern Luxury’s company values.
“The footprint for Modern Luxury as a whole is extremely philanthropic and very hyperlocal. So even though we have locations across the nation’s 24 top markets, it’s very important to our core set of values that we give back to the community in which we live. And that’s why LLF is very near and dear to our heart. Everything you do for the community is selfless… and it’s something we like to promote.”
In discussing the state of Miami business affected by quarantine, most in the hospitality industry, Guilarte shared how Modern Luxury offered advertising to these businesses free of charge to spark income. The publication also helped the wedding industry by providing business advertisements and engaging on social media with locals who had to put their ceremony on pause.
But before she was the publisher of Interiors South Florida and Weddings South Florida & Caribbean, Guilarte was a go-getter climbing the rungs of the media world. With a degree in Marketing and International Business, she headed national and international sales teams with two established media companies and was also the Sales Manager for the Miami Herald Media company for many years. She chalks up her lengthy and impressive career to carrying a few vital characteristics: being a people person and being relatable, flexible and resilient.
“In any business you will have setbacks and drawbacks, but it’s about looking at the positives, trying to say yes the majority of the time, and figuring it out. Always try to learn new things.”
Her message rings true for any field, but it feels especially important in the world we are living in today. Adapting to change is something we at The Little Lighthouse Foundation are committed to embodying as we move forward in serving our community no matter the circumstances.
Beauty All Around with the Stos Sisters
Wednesday, June 24, 2020
On Wednesday, June 24th, we went live with Sara and Srna Stos, local beauty and lifestyle influencers, in sponsorship of our Beauty All Around programming. The Beauty All Around program is dedicated to improving the lives of homeless women and youth at The Lotus House Women’s Shelter through therapeutic activities focusing on inner and outer wellness. Our DGFG Live Beauty All Around sessions have become an opportunity for us to build relationships with beauty and wellness figures like Richy Kanda and Adriana Paniagua, helping us continue to support The Lotus House!
Inspired by the Vogue questions series, we met with the Stos sisters to ask 50 questions about all things beauty and health. Among their go-to products and nutrition tips, Sara and Srna shared with us their family background and their motivation to do good in their community and even abroad in Serbia.
“Now is a time to unify everyone and to come together in community,” Srna said when asked why giving back was important. “For us to function as a community and a country I think [giving back] is the most important thing.”
Fit Club Presented by LaCroix with BaBEACHka
Thursday, June 25, 2020
On Thursday, June 25th, we went live with BaBEACHka, Executive Director Jonathan Babicka’s fitness brand centered around family and beach living, in support of our Fit Club program. Fit Club programming would typically take place at the Miami Bridge Shelter for at-risk youth, but with pandemic distancing, we have made it our mission to workout live every Thursday to continue fundraising for this cause. This quick 20 minute cardio routine was a display of strength and family fun as Babicka’s six-year-old daughter joined in.
Special thanks to LaCroix Water, which made the perfect water break for this session. With robust aromas and hints of flavor, it gave our team all the power we needed to get through. All the taste without the aspartame and artificial sugars of soda and energy drinks! Plus, boxed cans of LaCroix coincidentally make the best at-home weights to add some zest to your squats.
Do you need some more DGFG in your life? Check out this short video of how our guests finished our famous phrase: DO GOOD FEEL ______
Make sure to check out all new episodes of DGFG Live next week Monday-Thursday @ 3pm EST @LLFoundation