For Ebonie Mbeteni, the centrality of Celina was the major draw in choosing where to put down roots. “I have access to everything I need without living right in the middle of the chaos,” says the wife of Fortunatus and mom of Henry, 12, Corrina, 9, and Camille, 7. An international family—splitting time between Texas and East Africa—the Mbetenis love adventure, activities and travel.
Favorite family restaurant Our family spot is Perry’s because, quite frankly, the kids love the dessert display they do at the table with fire and sweets. Their favorite is the Mont Blanc. We also love to frequent lots of mom–and-pop restaurants, like Tender Smokehouse in Celina.
Best park We love Frisco Commons for all the different things they have for kids to do—including the water park!
Frisco Commons // 8000 McKinney Road, Frisco
Favorite Family Outing We go to the bowling alley, Urban Air and the movies. We love dine–in movie theaters.
Urban Air Adventure Park // 10570 John W. Elliott Drive, Suite 900, Frisco (more DFW locations)
For a night out We love the atmosphere and food of Fleming’s for date night. We also love The Shops at Legacy. As foodies, we think the variety of the food there is amazing. For a girls night, my friends and I swap between a fun spot like Mash’d to a place that provides a chance to let loose and enjoy everything the night has to offer, like Sambuca 360.
Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse // 7250 Dallas Parkway, Suite 110, Plano
The Shops at Legacy // 5741 Legacy Drive, Plano
Mash’d // 3401 Preston Road, Suite 1, Frisco
Sambuca 360 // 7200 Bishop Road, Suite 270, Frisco
For self-care I enjoy a good massage, facial, mani–pedi and what I call Mommy Maintenance. I make time to routinely take care of my body inside and out.
Go-to for getting active My favorite way to get active is to utilize my home gym while watching instructors on YouTube or blasting my favorite playlist on Spotify. However, the kids and I also love to run around the lake in our neighborhood for some fresh air. During quarantine, this was essential to our mental health. It was a great way to get out and recharge.
For cooling off Normally, we are travelling as a family during summer. This year, you will most likely find us at Hawaiian Falls or Frisco Athletic Center for their water slides and lazy river.
How they give back My family and I have always focused on advocacy within our community and beyond. We donate toys, clothes and shoes to those in need. A few years ago, we had a food drive with Lovepacs to collect food to help combat child hunger. Most recently, my husband and I took the kids to two protests to march for anti-racism. As they get older, we will continue to help them stay involved with their community and advocate for those who are in need.
Lovepacs // 122 Rose Lane, Suite J2, Frisco (serving additional DFW communities)
How she found her mom squad I found my local mom squad through social media, sports and school. I am always looking for new and exciting things for my kids to do, and social media is a great source for that. Along the way we meet some great people who stick around and become family friends.
Why Celina is great for families We love our city because it is a small town with a big heart. Celina is a community where you can be very involved with everything the city has to offer but still feel like you are not living in a city. I love the location, because I am two minutes from Prosper and 10 minutes from Frisco—but once I am home, I can still feel like I am away from all the noise. I have access to everything I need without living right in the middle of the chaos.
Photo courtesy of Ebonie Mbeteni.