Homeless Mom Shares 5-Star Recipes She Creates For Her Kids In Motel

Photo: TikTok / GoFundMe
TikTok of Motel Meals Celine Villegas

Celine Villegas is a homeless mother of two who recently got a rise to fame on TikTok for posting videos of her delicious homeless-cooked meals.

She and her family live inside of a motel in Los Angeles where she started a GoFundMe to move out of the pricey room and transition into some sort of rental/apartment.

Her viral 'Motel Meals' TikToks have people invested in her family's story.

According to Villegas’ GoFundMe page, she is unable to continue affording the motel in which they currently live — asking for money to be able to move into a real home.

“My goal is to raise funds for motel costs,” she writes in the description, “full move in deposits, credit checks and first and lasts rent, as well as application fees, power and etc. in hopes for a place of our own to call home.” 

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Credit: TikTok

Her TikTok, dubbed “Motel Meals,” has received over 42,000 followers with her highest viewed video surpassing 4 million views.

So far, the GoFundMe has seen a lot of success. Since its creation on July 16th, 2021, Villegas has raised over $6,133 out of the $5,000 goal.

In the comments of her most viewed video, she revealed how much of a help the TikTok community has been and promised to give more updates.

“Because of my TikTok family,” she wrote, “I have been able to not only pay up for our motel, but also save more than half of what is needed for our apartment!”

The inspiring mom is hoping to use her TikTok fame to get out of homelessness.

There has been an outpouring of support for Villegas and her family not only through the various donations but also through the compliments given to her about the food she makes for her kids.

She brags about the “5 Star” meals but they actually do look really good, making a variety of meals like steak and mashed potatoes, baked ziti, homemade chicken alfredo, and even burgers.

Credit: TikTok

Of course, she has been met with various critiques — not about her cooking, but about her living situation.

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TikTok user Kariana Garcia commented, “All the money you waste on a hotel you can save for a place of your own.”

Villegas’ asked Garcia, “And live where meanwhile ma’am?” as a response.

Some people assume that she’s just deciding to struggle or might not be homeless or could be hoarding the money she might be making from her newfound TikTok fame, but the answer isn’t quite so simple.

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Another user, Ruby, asks “wouldn’t it be less costly for you and your kids to go to a family shelter?” but made sure to show that she was just genuinely curious about her situation.

“We stayed in a shelter before hand and had a bad experience,” Villegas said. “I don’t feel comfortable staying in a shelter with my children.”

User GMariaRico called into question how Villegas could be homeless and live a life of struggle but afford to eat so well.

She said, “I budget all of my meals. We do not eat a big dinner every night. I only film a couple times a week.”

It seems like she has it all figured out for herself, and the attention that she’s been getting will only serve to benefit her as she transitions into finding a home for herself and her kids.

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Isaac Serna-Diez is a writer who focuses on entertainment and news, social justice, and politics. Follow him on Twitter here.