Dawn Garcia

in The Others -
So happy to be featuring the  mighty Dawn Garcia, creator + CEO of ATOD Magazine, print Editor of Lapalme, writer, screenwriter, host, mom and entrepreneur. 
Dawn Garcia
Mike met Dawn about a year ago, while in LA for the Academy Awards; he loved her instantly and just would not shut up about her energy, social skills and overall badassness. When we went to Cali for our honeymoon, she was at the top of our list of people we wanted to spend time with. When I finally met her… honestly, forget about her accomplishments and the very many hats she wears professionally; the most amazing things about Dawn are her generosity, warmth and adorable family. We spent an evening with them in their beautiful LA home and in no time, I felt that deep admiration, kinship and connection, that exquisite bond women share with each other, which is both empowering and an extraordinary driving force.

A charismatic hostess, whose charm was non the less surpassed by her delightful daughter Barcelona, Dawn also possesses two of my favourite things in the world: a great sense of humour and a gorgeous kitchen. Oh, and mad professional skills too.
Here’s what she’s up to currently: ‘There’s a TV Show in development about traveling, eating, culture and finding the connected tissue that connects us all. A book too, a story about how I fell in love with every bite … We are also in discussion to turn ATOD Magazine into an annual print edition as well!! Finally, in development are two feature films and one short film.”
 Her secret to being a proud, hands-on mom, maintaining a very successful online magazine and keeping up with all those projects?

Oh boy, I don’t think I can honestly say I’ve figured it out but I guess somehow I just decided life was chaotic and I had to find a way to work within it rather than try to control it. If you’ve ever seen the Pixar movie, “UP”, sometimes I feel like the dog, Doug, who can be in the middle of a conversation and suddenly a squirrel comes and he stops, mid-sentence and says “SQUIRREL”! The point being, I’m tragically easily distracted. I work on multiple projects a day but when I’m really trying to keep my head about me and accomplish a ton in a single day, I practice the 25/5 theory. I came across an article in INC. magazine that said to turn your phone on “do not disturb” and set the timer for 25 minutes. In that 25 minutes, focus on a single task. When the timer goes off? Stop for 5 minutes. Check email, do social media, make a call, grab coffee, whatever. At the end of the 5 minutes, reset the timer to 25 minutes and start all again. When I do that I find that I’ve actually finished articles in that time, written a good 5 pages of a screenplay, drafted a presentation for a show or sponsorship deal, written four or so pages of my book or planned the next great ATOD adventure. All that said? I definitely need to practice that WAY more!

As for how I see myself professionally, that’s a tough one. I’d love to say I’m Superwoman and I’m accomplishing everything I set out but truthfully, I just want to manage integrity. I work really hard (probably a workaholic) but I do it all so I can see my dreams materialize and make sure my daughter Barcelona understands that as a girl, she’ll be able to do whatever she wants in life. The one thing I can say about myself professionally is I’m tenacious as hell. No is an answer I don’t like hearing so I do all I can to make certain it’s a word I hear as infrequently as possible!

Dawn Garcia

3 favorite ingredients:

Does wine count?! Spices: turmeric, sea salt, chipotle raspberry spice (this is AMAZING!) and food: foie gras, mixed greens, cheese

What do you always have in your fridge?

Crunchy unsalted peanut butter, mixed greens, broccoli, cucumber, blackberries and cheese

Go- to snack:

A gluten free wrap with beets, cucumber, mint, parsley, feta cheese, greens, micro greens, radish and Lemonette Curry-Cumin dressing or 18 year-old aged balsamic. The key is to spend one day chopping it all and then putting it in a container so it’s already mixed and ready to throw on the gluten-free tortilla! Otherwise it takes more time and those corn tortilla chips start calling my name.

Which ingredient do you consider overrated?

Honestly? Sugar.

3 favourite places to eat in LA:

Experience Intro, 71 Above, Trejos Tacos

  • 3 places you go to for your grocery shopping:

Trader Joes, Handy Market (a small little local produce + meat market in Burbank), Ralphs

Dawn Garcia

 food memories:

Smelling my Grandma Garcia cook French toast in the morning. It would take ages because she would peak the egg white like a meringue and add powdered sugar and cinnamon. The process of separating yolk and egg white was easy but it was the whipping the egg white by hand that took forever! I make it now but only when I’m prepared for a thirty-minute process and hand cramps!

My Grandpa Evans (Jack, everyone called him) always was an early riser so whenever I spent the night at their house, I’d wake up super early to sit with him. He bought these awful pecan rolls that came six to a package. I say awful because they probably were just a mouthful of sugar. But we’d sit at the kitchen table, just the two of us, and he’d drink his coffee and eat the pecan roll and I’d take a pecan roll and unroll the whole thing and eat it bite by tiny bite. It would make time last a little longer and I could sit and laugh with him before everyone else woke up.

The first time I left the US I went to a third world country, Belize. We stayed in these beautiful huts in the middle of the rainforest and one evening, a local tribe, called the Garifuna, brought us fresh fish. It had been speared that day and wrapped in banana leaf cooked with the most exquisite mole sauce I’ve ever had (to this day I’ve never tasted mole that was that phenomenal!).

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*Photo credits: (1st) Michael Paleodimos, (2nd) by “a beautiful Japanese family in Tokyo. They asked me if I wanted a photo while at Imperial Palace and voila!”,  (3rd) Tram Tran

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