Happy PRIDE Month!

I feel blessed to live in a diverse city like New Orleans surrounded by so many artists and creatives. Small business owners struggle already and add LGBTQ into the mix and it's even harder. To me, Pride Month isn't just about rainbows and flags and parades (though I do love a good New Orleans parade), it's about an activism movement that creates a world where we all support each other regardless of race, religion, identity, etc. 

This month (and every month) I hope you'll join me in supporting the small businesses that make our nation great and the people who run them that make our world diverse. According to the Small Business Administration, in the USA, there are 31.7 million small businesses and 6 million of those have employees.

In honor of Pride Month, I'm sharing a few of my favorite local New Orleans businesses. 

My friends P.R. Palm, CHt and Emily J. Nappi, MFT, own Calm Palm Counseling and Hypnosis where they offer LGBTQ+ affirming therapy in New Orleans and beyond. Below is their take on Pride month: 
"Pride Month is an invitation to be authentically and unapologetically yourself. Being queer in our culture still means navigating the world with a certain amount of armor- mental, emotional, even sometimes physical. Pride month invites us to put that armor down, to be vulnerable, to share our stories, to kneel in homage to those who paved the way, to say “Yes. This is who I am, consequences be damned!”
As queer counselors, we kept this spirit of Pride in mind when opening our practice, and are actively building a space to foster radical queer joy in uptown New Orleans." 

Another one of my New Orleans favorites is Patti Dunn from Tchoup Industries. The photo above is me sporting one of their bags! Patti makes handmade bags and accessories using local materials. Her tagline is "for city and swamp." How cute is that?! Here is her take on Pride Month: 

"For me, Pride month is a time to celebrate LOVE, to give thanks to those you braved and paved the road before me, to applaud and support the LGBTQ community for choosing to love who they love openly and freely, and to take a moment to wrap myself in the comforting and uplifting love of my dream wife and family."

Check out her shop and show her some support. 

Some of my other favorite NOLA businesses you can show love are: 

    • Randy Krause Schmidt - a New Orleans photographer who specializes in portrait and food photography (and is amazing!). 
    • Bourbon Pride - a retail gift shop with some awesome (and hilarious) LGBT clothing items - they ship nationwide! 
    • Melissa Araujo and Saveur Catering - a 100% farm-to-table catering company. Delish! 
    • Vessel - if you're in NOLA, check out this mid-city restaurant & bar in a historic church - the perfect spot for happy hour.  

Check out more businesses via this list from New Orleans and Company. If you can't support them monetarily, remember giving a like, share and follow is support, too. 

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