Multi-awarded chef and new mom to twins boys, Florabel Co-Yatco, finds that the secret to enjoying life’s many flavors is by infusing each day with positivity
Fresh out of the busy kitchen of her acclaimed dining concept, Florabel exudes the same vibrancy as the inviting ambiance in her beloved establishments. It comes as no surprise that despite closures of the pandemic, she and her family have maintained a cheerful disposition. While powering through a year of drastic changes and immense pressure to pivot, they also welcomed twin boys.
With many of their business temporarily shut down, Florabel’s family of six (with husband Chris, daughter Adele, and sons Manu, Isaiah, and Josef) took advantage of the quarantine period to spend more time together. Swimming in the backyard, watching Netflix, or experimenting in the kitchen became staples in their daily menu of activities. Life has been slower-paced for the talented chef, and Florabel says she couldn’t be more grateful.
Nutrition is a vital aspect of raising children, and Florabel ensures that her young quarter gets sufficiently nourished by her dishes. “I make sure that everyone has fruits, vegetables, and protein during mealtime. While I occasionally treat them to some junk food to snack on, what I limit more are the sweets!” she stresses. Aside from food, trips to the farm serve up large portions of fresh air and vitamin D for the family.
Florabel also shares the difficulties faced by her businesses and the steps she’s taken to aid her employees. She recounts, “The major struggles I’ve had to endure include closing restaurants, balancing my staff’s requests, and trying to keep the company afloat so I can continue to employ everyone. I’ve also ensured that they stay healthy and vaccinated.”
In hindsight, Florabel says that counting her blessings has sustained her zest for life. “In the past year, I’ve learned that I don’t really need much to live—as long as my family is healthy and complete, I’ve got everything. I also know that no matter the struggle, God really makes everything happen for a reason. But the biggest revelation was that I didn’t need many clothes as I thought I did—I’ve noticed that I’ve only worn the same pair of shoes the past year!” she concludes with a hearty laugh.