In January, Devin and I took a road trip to New York, with a stop in Cleveland on the way. Seeing lots of friends (and one cousin––hi, Bridget!) was the perfect start to the year.
In February I traveled to Phoenix to celebrate my favorite valentine on her first birthday. I wasn’t sure what my first birthday in Madison would be like, but my friend Makeba came to visit, and it ended up being really fun!
Illustrating Immigration, a collaborative project featuring art by Anja Riebensahm, was published in March. When Anja and I came up with the idea to illustrate true stories about immigration to counter negative stereotypes, we had no idea how much worse anti-immigrant rhetoric would get. 2016 has been a terrifying, tiring year for many immigrants, and 2017 will likely see a deterioration of the few rights undocumented Americans have won in the past eight years. I feel sick when I think about it, and I am even more committed to sharing migration stories and encouraging solidarity in any way I can.
I finally perfected my tacos al pastor recipe, which felt like heaven for this Mexican vegetarian who misses almost all of her favorite foods.
In May, I wrote about my grandmother’s feminism (alternate title: basketball, divorce, and secret leave-your-husband funds).
My five-year college reunion happened this summer. Fortunately, I’ve been able to see most of my friends from college very often, but it was great to live in the dorms for a few days and have everyone in one place. I especially liked photographing people and trying to capture what I love about them. This is Salim, the happiest person I know.
In July, I went to Playa del Carmen with my aunt and my mom. Then, I went to Mexico City to see two of my sobrin@s and my cousins before going to Chihuahua to see the rest of my family. I started 2016 thinking I wouldn’t be able to spend much time in Mexico, so I felt extra lucky to spend a month there.
I got to take a quick trip to New York at the end of the summer. My friends Chris and Dani had extra tickets to Afropunk, where everyone’s style was so good that I got over my fear of asking strangers if I could take their picture.
In September I came back to Wisconsin, in time to get flowers from the farmers’ market and have a surprise party for Devin and his greatest friends.
My beautiful, up-for-anything friend Melissa came to visit me in Madison, and I laughed for four days straight. Here we are in miniature as part of an exhibition called Lovey Town.
After the election, Devin and I drove to Chicago and went to Trinity United Church of Christ, the church that President Obama and his family attended when they lived there. They post clips of the sermons every week on Instagram––this one is my favorite.
The best part of Christmas was hearing Carlos Manuel ask, “¿Es mío?” before opening each present to make sure he wasn’t opening someone else’s gift.