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AUSTIN WOMAN MAGAZINE |  JUNE 2018

“The road to success is always under construction.” —Lily Tomlin


First we saved his life. Then we helped save his life’s dream.

Stephen Moore dreamed of competing in the Strongman competition. Then a drunk driver almost killed him. Watch his story at stdavids.com.

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3D Mammography Can Detect 41% More Breast Cancers.

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texaschildrensaustin.org

©2018 Texas Children’s Hospital. All rights reserved. Heyne Ranch. AUS036_032618

When we say we’re on our way to Austin, just what does that mean? It means we’re packing up and crossing the prairie to bring our unique brand of care to your community. Heck, kids aren’t just small adults. We recognized this more than 60 years ago when we made our case for creating a brand new hospital in Texas dedicated to serving children. From board-certified experts in pediatric conditions to equipment designed with a child’s safety and comfort in mind, Austin-area kids now have just a little bit more that they can call their very own. Texas has always been home. We’re just adding a new town.


Girlstart Campers Explore Solutions to Sustain the Environment with Texas Disposal Systems Since 1997, the Austin-based organization Girlstart has been empowering girls to find solutions to the world’s most complex problems using STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Math). Their innovative, quality education programs inspire girls to take risks and encourage curiosity to help them develop strong problem-solving skills. In addition to app development, robotics, video game development, and circuitry offerings, Girlstart has joined forces with Texas Disposal Systems (TDS) to integrate the company’s Eco Academy curriculum into their week-long Summer Camp sessions*, called “Take it to the Streets.” TDS Eco Academy, a program that educates K-12 students about trash, recycling and composting options in Central Texas schools, was a natural addition to Girlstart Summer Camps as it encourages campers to think critically about waste diversion. Launched in 2017, Eco Academy was designed to minimize waste in schools, and includes campus-wide recycling, plus compostables collection in cafeterias. TDS provides curriculum and educational materials to staff and administrators, as well as students, instructing them how to recycle and divert waste, while teaching them why it is important.

“Given the camp environment and the girls’ affinity for helping the planet, teaching sustainability presents a great opportunity to open their minds to the STEM opportunities...”


Similarly, Girlstart will teach camp participants how to divert waste by sorting compostable waste into the correct bin and build a composting bin for the organization’s headquarters. Given the camp environment and the girls’ affinity for helping the planet, teaching sustainability presents a great opportunity to open their minds to the STEM opportunities that exist within sustainability and resource management career fields. Additionally, campers will use recycled materials to complete various projects to increase sustainability efforts. Girlstart, an organization that has served over 70,000 girls and 30,000 teachers and families with informal STEM programs, offers a wide range of lessons to help increase girls’ competency in conducting scientific investigations and critical thinking. Girlstart After School offers free STEM education programs on a weekly basis to more than 2,700 4th and 5th grade girls to raise awareness about STEM careers. Much like Girlstart, TDS aims to educate students at a

young age to increase the likelihood they will develop problem solving and critical thinking skills. Both Girlstart and Texas Disposal Systems have a shared goal to make a positive and lasting impact on the future through education and awareness, equipping students with the tools they need both in and outside the classroom. STEM education plays an integral role in sustaining our natural resources and environment for future generations, as well as teaching problem solving skills to help solve for challenges like waste diversion. Thanks to programs like Eco Academy and Girlstart, there is little doubt the investment in younger generations will make for a cleaner, better tomorrow. *Camps are full at this time. Registration for 2019 opens in early January.


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52

ON THE COVER

PARTY GIRL BY CRYSTAL ZUZEK

60

FEATURE

THE ART OF THE UNCONVENTIONAL

Photo by Annie Ray.

BY NICHOLAS BARANCYK


CONTENTS

42 SAVVY WOMEN

J.Crew shoulder-tie one-piece swimsuit, $110, available at jcrew.com. Acne Studios Jacui cotton-poplin shirtdress, $360, available at ByGeorge, 524 N. Lamar Blvd., 512.472.5951, bygeorgeaustin.com. Silver seashell belt, $22, available at Beehive, 3300 Bee Caves Road, 512.347.0800, lovebeehive.com. Square-frame sunglasses in black and yellow, $20, available at dylanwylde.com.

Photo by Rudy Arocha.

JUNE

STYLE + HOME

42 TRENDS Gorgeous in Gingham 20 COUNT US IN Women in Numbers 22 B OTTOM LINE Champagne Supply Co. Founders 48 BEAUTY Carbon Clean Ana Müzel Silva and Gabriella Müzel 50 MAKE ROOM Keep Austin Funky 24 G  IVE BACK Fresh Chefs Society GOURMET 26 F ROM THE DESK OF Author Carolyn Cohagan 64 R  ECIPE REVEAL Oreo Borealis Shake 28 P ROFILE Florist Samantha McCrary 66 GIRL WALKS INTO A BAR Upstairs Circus 29 PROFILE Madi Smyser of Madi’s Munchies 68 F OOD NEWS Hmart

MUST LIST

30 D  ISCOVER London 32 R  OUNDUP Female-founded Instagram Accounts

ATX WOMEN TO WATCH 34 LAUREL CORRINNE 35 S HAN DAVIS 36 JAN D’ALISE MARTIN 37 A  SIA GONCZAR AND IZABELA ULRICH 38 LINDA MCCOY 39 E STHER YANIV, MD 40 LESLEY LORENZ 41 K  AT KRONENBERG 10 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018

WELLNESS 70 W  AITING ROOM Menstrual Cups 72 E AT THIS, NOT THAT Ketogenic and Whole30

74 H  ER ROUTINE

Dakota Luther

POINT OF VIEW 76 I AM AUSTIN WOMAN

Montannah Kenney

ON THE COVER Photo by Annie Ray, annieraycreative.com Styled by Mandi Summers, mandisummers.com Makeup by Tiffany Taylor, justbeyoutify.com Shot on location at Playland Skate Center, playlandskatecenter.net

Veda T-shirt, $58, available at ByGeorge, 524 N. Lamar Blvd., 512.472.5951, bygeorgeaustin.com. Denim cutoffs with grommet strip, $55, available at dylanwylde.com. Miista Taissa leather heels, $264, available at Olive, 1200 E. 11th St., 512.522.9462, shopolive.us.


SHERRY MORRIS Austin Native, Ranch Owner. ♥s Austin’s dedication to greenspaces Favorite Eats | Evangeline Cafe & Jack Allen’s in Oak Hill LOVES ♥ Walking Lady Bird Lake trails ♥ Being around animals of all kinds ♥ Getting together with friends for backyard BBQs *SMILE MAKEOVER BY MARK SWEENEY, DDS

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I AM A TEXAS MBA “I pursued my Texas MBA six years after I founded Amy’s Ice Creams. The intelligence and high level of achievement by my classmates and keen perspective of my professors unlocked potential in me I’d never known. I stepped my game up in all areas of my life and found a new level of confidence. The camaraderie and support of lifelong friendships made between classmates and professors has proven to be priceless.”

AMY SIMMONS Founder, Amy’s Ice Creams, Baked By Amy’s Co-founder, Phil’s Ice House, Austinville Entrepreneurial consultant, Amy’s EDU First professional boxer in the State of Texas Mother of three Marathon runner Former Mayor Pro Tem of West Lake Hills, Texas Texas MBA 1994

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EXPAND YOUR NETWORK

Photo by Korey Howell.

Evening & Executive Programs


VOLUME 16, ISSUE 10 CO-FOUNDER Melinda Maine Garvey CEO Christopher Garvey PUBLISHER Cynthia Guajardo Shafer

EDITORIAL MANAGING EDITOR Chantal Rice SENIOR EDITOR Lauren Jones ASSISTANT EDITOR Courtney Runn CONTRIBUTING WRITERS

Nicholas Barancyk, Kat Barclay, Rebecca L. Bennett, Sommer Brugal, Mauri Ebel, Saba Ghaffari, Rachel Holtin, Lauren Jones, Montannah Kenney, Lauryn Lax, Madison Matous, Hannah Phillips, Chantal Rice, Gretchen M. Sanders, Elizabeth Ucles, Crystal Zuzek

ART CREATIVE DIRECTOR Niki Jones CONTRIBUTING ARTISTS

Anna Ambrosi, Rudy Arocha, Andrew Chan, Mauri Elbel, Song Faulkner, Cristina Fisher, Sydney Gawlik, Caroline Lee, Daniela Lewkowicz, Pawel Libera, Laura Logan, Mandy Morrison, Rui Nakata, Alysha Rainwaters, Annie Ray, Courtney Runn, Mandi Summers, Tiffany Taylor, Erica Tello, Bailey Toksoz, Ella Wells, Jessica Wetterer, Joy Wilson

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Nicholas Barancyk, Kat Barclay, Kyla Canavan, Saba Ghaffari, Riley Krauss, Elizabeth Ucles

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April Cumming, Emily C. Laskowski, Deborah Hamilton-Lynne, Mary Anne Connolly, Elizabeth Eckstein Austin Woman is a free monthly publication of AW Media Inc., and is available at more than 1,250 locations throughout Austin and in Lakeway, Cedar Park, Round Rock and Pflugerville. All rights reserved. For submission requirements, visit awmediainc.com/contribute. No part of the magazine may be reprinted or duplicated without permission. Visit us online at atxwoman.com. Email us at info@awmediainc.com. 512.328.2421 | 3921 Steck Ave., Suite A111, Austin, TX 78759

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FROM THE MANAGING EDITOR COMMUNITY

PARTNERS

Publication of Austin Woman would not be possible without the support of our monthly advertisers and sponsors, who believe in the impact we are making in the Austin community. The following businesses have stepped up their support of our efforts beyond traditional advertising and we are proud to recognize them as our partners. The team at Austin Woman is grateful for these businesses that have shown their commitment to the advancement of women in Austin and hopes you, as readers, recognize their efforts and support these businesses and all our regular advertisers. CYNTHIA GUAJARDO SHAFER

Publisher DIAMOND-LEVEL PARTNERS

COMMUNITY PARTNERS LAW OFFICE OF JANET MCCULLAR

L

ike many a thrill-seeking and wandering soul, I moved to Austin in search of adventure. That was in 2000, when it was possible to get from one side of town to the other in less than 20 minutes, the city’s population hovered at less than 700,000 and adored weirdo Leslie Cochran was an odd yet welcome fixture on Sixth Street. In my 18 years making a home and a life for myself in the City of the Violet Crown, and my eight years working as the copy editor for Austin Woman, I have indeed experienced much adventure. I’ve also witnessed many changes, some of them frustrating (traffic, cost-of-living increases, relentless allergies, those darn back-in parking spots on South Congress Avenue) and some of them exhilarating (the growth of South By Southwest, the addition of the Austin City Limits Music Festival, landing the only Formula 1 racing venue in the United States in Circuit of the Americas). Aside from those commonly mentioned nuisances and exciting evolutions, I’ve noticed something else has transformed: what it means to be an Austin woman. When I was a young journalist on my early escapades to become the next great American writer (Spoiler alert: It hasn’t happened—yet!), I felt overwhelmed and even intimidated by the successful Austin women I encountered, from those ruling the world of big business and the music and theater scenes to those quietly yet purposefully working to effect positive change in our growing community. But despite my concerns, I was welcomed, supported, mentored and championed by some of the city’s most engaging female change-makers. They instilled in me a deepened sense of ambition, the desire to always be learning and, of course, encouraged me to have a wildly open mind in a town that staunchly supports individuality. These days, the Austin woman is just as savvy, influential and giving as those grand dames who helped pave my way. Sure, maybe she’s new to the city, having relocated from Los Angeles or New York City or some other less known and less bustling locale. And though the modern Austin woman can still be found in the form of dynamic and sharp-witted native Austinites (Yep, they still exist.), the welcoming nature of our city, combined with the vast number of opportunities in an array of industries, means Austin attracts all kinds of women from throughout the world who contribute to its evergrowing charm and prestige. One needs only to peruse this issue of Austin Woman, our Young Women to Watch issue, filled with inspiring yet relatable stories of young women accomplishing exceptional feats, to get a glimpse of how Austin’s up-andcomers are instrumental to its continued livelihood, ingenuity and beloved weirdness. In the 18 years since I became a resident Austinite, I have discovered that what it means to be an Austin woman has more evolved than outright changed. Whether native or brand-new transplants to the city, Austin women are generous, talented, brilliant, enlightened—and yes, totally weird—innovators who always jump at the chance to continue to ensure this thriving metropolis is unparalleled in its sublime grandeur. I hope you find some of that magnificence in the pages of this and every issue of Austin Woman. As always, we value your readership and connection, so please don’t hesitate to reach out to us. Happy reading!

CHANTAL RICE Managing Editor

14 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018

Join the conversation @AustinWoman #YoungWomenToWatchIssue

Photo by Korey Howell.

Cheers,


Something for everyone

CONTRIBUTORS This month, we asked our contributors: Name your top three party must-haves.

ANNIE RAY

COVER PHOTOGRAPHER, “PARTY GIRL,” PAGE 52

Since 2005, Annie Ray has focused on bringing out the “real stuff” in everything she shoots. Her relationship with every subject will make 1,000 words say so much more. “A projector for a fun movie or livestreaming, an open-air photo booth and yard games can make a party great.”

CRYSTAL ZUZEK

COVER STORY WRITER, “PARTY GIRL,” PAGE 52

Crystal Zuzek is an award-winning health, wellness and lifestyle freelance writer and editor with 17 years of experience in the journalism industry. A graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism, Crystal made her way to Austin in 2005. She volunteers her time on the board of directors of Women Communicators of Austin as the vice president of freelance programming. “My top three party must-haves are karaoke, a photo booth and a good beer selection. The karaoke playlist has to feature Journey, and the photo booth needs to have a wide selection of ridiculously silly props. I’m talking hillbilly teeth, Elvis hair with sideburns—the works. To quench my thirst after I’ve belted out a few numbers, I like to enjoy a German beer, especially a good Kölsch.”

MANDI SUMMERS

STYLIST, “GORGEOUS IN GINGHAM,” PAGE 42 AND “PARTY GIRL,” PAGE 52

Upcoming event: Sarah and Ernest Butler Texas Young Composers Concert The most elite young composers Texas has to offer come together for one night to premiere their compositions for all of Austin to hear.

June 16, 2018, 7:30 p.m. Long Center's Dell Hall

Mandi Summers grew up in Montana and got her bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Montana in Missoula. She moved to Austin seven years ago with her now husband in search of endless summer and new horizons. Mandi got into styling after spending some time buying and managing for a local boutique. When she’s not working, she can be found snuggling her two elderly chihuahua terriers, Farrah and Doug. “My three party must-haves are Miller Lite, crop tops and a safe ride home!”

NICHOLAS BARANCYK

WRITER, “THE ART OF THE UNCONVENTIAL,” PAGE 60

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Nicholas Barancyk’s favorite moments are those spent in foreign lands where English fails to reign supreme. While he’s in the States, he spends his time writing fantasy and trying to understand what postmodern authors are talking about. He’ll devour everything science and probably spends a little too much time on YouTube. “It’s not a party until someone cranks up Vulfpeck, uncorks the pinot noir and breaks out the mini quiches.”


Thank you to our 2018 Down and Derby sponsors, donors and attendees for supporting our skin cancer prevention mission and helping us save lives! To learn more about our efforts and how you can support our mission visit, theshadeproject.org

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CONNECT WITH US! CAN’T GET ENOUGH OF THIS ISSUE? Check us out at atxwoman.com. neighborhood since 1986, satisfying Austin’s major Tex-Mex cravings. Get to know the second generation behind this iconic family-run restaurant, Lyle and Bette Lippincott.

➥ More road-trip destinations. Pack a bag and hit the road. Uncover the

charm of Lockhart, Texas, and stay at the quaint Ellison House, a renovated 1880s-era farmhouse.

➥ More fearless women. Nina Berenato has made quite the splash in the

last few years with her handcrafted jewelry, fearlessly forged attitude and female-run metals studio. See inside her new headquarters at Domain Northside.

➥ More ways to treat yourself. It’s officially ice-cream weather in Austin. Check out our favorite woman-owned shops and #supportlocal.

WIN THIS!

DON’T

MOLLY PHILLIPS JEWELRY ROSITA EARRINGS Molly Phillips (@mollyphillipsjewelry) makes the jewelry she wants to wear, crafting beautiful and well-made earrings, necklaces, rings and more from fine materials, each handmade in Austin by her talented team of designers. Her unique jewelry has been featured in the pages of Vogue and worn by celebrities like Vivica A. Fox, Kendall Keith and Miss Texas 2017 Margana Wood. Brighten up a casual weekday look with some simple hoops or throw on a pair of statement-making geode drops and become the life of the party. To celebrate Austin Woman’s Young Women to Watch issue, Phillips is giving away a pair of her new Rosita earrings (a $98 value), the same type our spunky cover woman, Jordan Jones, rocks in our feature this month. To enter, keep an eye on our Instagram account, @AustinWoman, for the giveaway announcement in mid-June. A winner will be chosen and notified by the end of the month.

AUSTIN WOMAN SUMMER LAUNCH PARTY Follow us on social media @austinwoman for details to come.

FOLLOW US

@austinwoman

18 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018

LIKE US

MISS

Whole Planet Foundation’s Power Her Potential Women’s Expo June 2, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Whole Foods Market, 525 N. Lamar Blvd. wholeplanetfoundation.org/power-potentialwomens-expo Austin Symphony Hartman Foundation Concerts in the Park June 3 through Aug. 26, 7:30 p.m. Hartman Concert Park at The Long Center, 701 W. Riverside Drive austinsymphony.org Austin Ice Cream Festival June 23, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., and 6 to 10 p.m. Fiesta Gardens, 2101 Jesse E. Segovia St. austinicecreamfestival.com

facebook.com/austinwoman

FOLLOW US

@ austinwoman

Güero’s photo courtesy of Resplendent Hospitality. Ellison House photo by Lauren Coyle. Nina Berenato photo courtesy of Nina Berenato. Win This photo by Niki Jones.

➥ More Austin favorites. Güero’s Taco Bar has been a staple of the SoCo


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AVVY WOMEN

COUNT US IN

WOMEN IN NUMBERS

Facts and figures on females from throughout the world. BY ELIZABETH UCLES, ILLUSTRATIONS BY JESSICA WETTERER

66 Percent Female

4 Times as Likely

17 Percent of Young Girls

Starbucks serves as one of the biggest pick-me-ups for women consumers on a dayto-day basis. But Starbucks is also a major employer of women. Fortune named the coffee-chain giant one of the best companies to work for, noting women make up about 66 percent of its employee pool. The company’s familyfriendly work environment (The corporate headquarters in Seattle offers on-site child care.) and flexible work hours (Ninety percent of employees work part time.) are among the many employee perks. As of 2014, Starbucks also funds 100 percent of women’s preventive health coverage.

Young women are making their presence known in higher education. A study by the Pew Research Center shows millennial women are four times, or 36 percent, as likely to earn a bachelor’s degree at the same age as their Silent Generation (ages 70 and older) predecessors. Not only are more women taking up seats in college classrooms, they are also taking up more seats than young men. The same study shows millennial women are 7 percent more likely than men to earn a bachelor’s degree, a finding that has reversed from the heyday of the Silent Generation.

Girls appear to be adopting strict makeup routines at an earlier age. A recent study showed 17 percent of 12- to 14-year-olds refuse to leave the house without their makeup done. More than half of girls wear makeup almost every day and some even go to bed with a full face, despite dermatologist-proven dangers to the skin. According to Money magazine, the average woman will spend $43 on a makeup shopping trip and will spend more than $15,000 on beauty products in her lifetime. Even with common unhealthy makeup habits, 81 percent of young girls still care about having clear and healthy skin.

Twice as Likely According to UNICEF, approximately 23 percent of Kenyan girls are married off by the time they turn 18, with 4 percent of girls married by the time they turn 15. More often than not, these girls are married to much older men. In rural parts of Kenya, girls are either seen by their families as an economic burden or valued as capital for exchanging goods, money and livestock. According to Girls Not Brides, a global partnership committed to ending child marriage and enabling girls to fulfill their potential, girls in these rural areas of Kenya are twice as likely to be married before age 18 than girls living in urban areas, which is a divide that has increased by 36 percent since 2003.

3 of Forbes’ Finest Some pretty outstanding young women made Forbes’ Youngest 30 Under 30 list for 2018. One precocious young woman who was recognized is 13-year-old Marley Dias, the founder of #1000blackgirlbooks, a project that has collected more than 10,000 books featuring black female protagonists. Dias will also become a published author herself this year. Another young woman, 17-year-old Jackie Evancho, also made the list. The classical singer made her debut on America’s Got Talent at age 10 and has released six consecutive No. 1 classical albums since. Then there’s Iyore Olaye, age 23, who was recognized for making waves as the lead product-development engineer at Walker and Company, a tech company that creates beauty products for people of color.

20 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018


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AVVY WOMEN

BOTTOM LINE

THE ART OF THE SIDE HUSTLE

Champagne Supply Co. Founders Ana Müzel Silva and Gabriella Müzel offer insights for how to launch a successful business while maintaining a full-time job. BY SOMMER BRUGAL Ana Müzel Silva and Gabriella Müzel had been friends for quite some time when the idea of starting their own business sparked. The two were sitting outside, sipping one of their favorite drinks: rosé. “We started talking about how cool it would be if something we loved so much [could be] turned into a business,” Müzel says. That mutual love was for Champagne, which naturally became the foundation of their business. Champagne Supply Co., a mobile Champagne truck that offers a personalized beverage experience, was formed. The best friends and sisters-in-law launched their business almost two years ago, and it has quickly caught fire in Austin’s wedding-and-events scene. And while the business continues to grow, both partners also maintain success in their other full-time jobs. Given their experience in the art of the side hustle with Champagne Supply Co., Austin Woman sat down with the two to gain a bit of insight into how to successfully run a passion project while holding down a full-time job. In launching your own side hustle, both women agree research is key. Müzel recommends focusing on legal restrictions and regulations that might not seem obvious. “The amount of paperwork required for us to start [took us] at least a month and a half,” Müzel explains. “My suggestion would be to research any sort of legalities first [because] that can get people in trouble.” Müzel Silva also recommends handson research within the field. When starting a business, she says it’s important to have a path. For someone dreaming of owning her own coffee-roasting business, for example, she imagines the path’s starting point might look like working as a barista. Positioning yourself in the field and learning as much as possible, she says, will enable you to successfully launch your passion project. CREATE POSITIVE CIRCLES

According to the duo, surrounding yourself with individuals in the same industry is crucial when starting your own business, especially when doing so as a full-time employee elsewhere. Because

22 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018

Photo by Anna Ambrosi.

DO YOUR RESEARCH


time is often sparse when launching a side hustle, the women say having individuals to turn to for advice can help you succeed. “Having a full-time job and a side hustle, we’re really fortunate to have our family in our immediate range,” Müzel Silva says. “My dad hauls the truck to events while we’re still getting started.” While having family nearby isn’t possible for everyone, Müzel Silva and Müzel encourage side-hustle entrepreneurs to create a support system they can count on, whether it be friends, co-workers or those within the industry.

being open and honest in your communication. “It’s a lot about your schedule and being respectful of the other’s,” Müzel Silva says. “But it’s also about being respectful of the jobs we hold and that we’re also accountable to someone else.” Having a side hustle is like having another 9-to-5 job, Müzel says; you simply have to figure out how to give yourself another eight hours between your regular working days. For the women of Champagne Supply Co., that means early mornings, late nights and a lot of texting.

PRIORITIZE EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION

Müzel Silva notes that the cake-pop theory—mastering the smaller steps you need to take to complete a larger project—can help make your goals seem more tangible. Take a wedding cake, for example. While you might not know how to build a wedding cake, you may know how to make a cake pop. So, what’s the cake-pop version of Champagne Supply Co.? It’s a bar cart where a single bottle of Champagne—maybe two—waits to be popped.

Photo courtesy of Sophie Epton Photography.

For the sisters-in-law, working with a friend or, in this case, a family member, has worked in their favor. Müzel says their friendship has allowed for a certain level of camaraderie, enabling each to understand where the other is mentally, emotionally and physically. Having a bit of empathy for the other’s personal needs has also allowed for better, more effective communication. Both women say the key to running a successful business or side hustle is really a matter of

FIND YOUR CAKE POP

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AVVY WOMEN

GIVE BACK

FOOD AS A TEACHER

Fresh Chefs Society connects those in the food-service industry with foster-care youth to help prepare them for adulthood. BY MADISON MATOUS

Photos courtesy of Brio Photography.

Food is known to bring people together. And that’s exactly what Fresh Chefs Society is doing. The organization brings together people in the food-service industry with youth in the foster-care system to create a safe place for kids to learn the skills they need to be successful adults, as well as embrace a sense of stability that is often absent in their lives. When growing up, most of us have family and mentors to guide us on our paths to becoming independent, but foster-care youth don’t always have that, particularly as they age out of the system and have to face the real world.

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Growing up in the foster-care system until she was 11, Shaleiah Fox knows the struggles that often come with such a life. Naturally, her main focus in her graduate and volunteer work was on foster-care youth. When she came to Austin, she saw the opportunity to bring the two together. “When I moved to Austin, I was struck by the incredible generosity of the city, specifically the food community, and I really wanted to use that as a tool to connect the community to youth in foster care and empower that community to give back,” Fox says. Most people understand the system is fraught with issues, but a lot of the more obvious ways to help involve major commitments. Fox wanted to create a way people could more easily give back while engaging with the youth in a positive manner. Fresh Chefs Society helps bridge that gap through food. The mission of Fresh Chefs is to empower foster-care youth by teaching them the skills they need to enter the workforce and, of course, how to cook for themselves. Additionally, Fox explains it’s valuable for youth to understand food-industry workers don’t necessarily have to go the traditional educational route to make a good living, as long as they are willing to work hard, and that finding a good restaurant to work in can be like finding a family. One of the key programs at Fresh Chefs involves apprenticeship. Through the program, youth learn about working in the food industry, as well as how to develop job-interview techniques and other employment-focused skills. Upon completion of the program, youth obtain a food-handler’s certificate and become part of the Fresh Chefs alumni network, through which they have access to job opportunities and continuing education. “We create that environment through the apprenticeship program to where we are there for them to show them how to be good employees, but we do it through food because it is a safe, positive, therapeutic, creative space,” Fox says. Young participants are paid for the work they do during the apprenticeship and are able to add the experience to their resumes. They each also get a kitchen-startup kit so they will have everything they need to cook at home for themselves when they are on their own. Besides the apprenticeship, Fresh Chefs also hosts potlucks and cooking demonstrations and provides an array of basic cooking lessons. The potlucks, offered bimonthly in the home of a volunteer or chef, give those in the community the chance to share a meal with the foster youth. “We know what’s possible when we all gather around the table and share a meal,” Fox says. “We realize that we are far more alike than different.”

She compares food to language in that it has the ability to bring people together and facilitate sometimes difficult but important conversations. The central focus of teaching youth to cook for themselves is to build self-efficacy and to help build up their confidence for life after foster care, regardless of whether they decide to pursue a career in the food industry. It’s also about making connections with future employers and mentors. Both foster-care youth and chefs benefit from the program, Fox notes. “Foster care is transient,” she says. “They are taken from their home and can face up to seven placement disruptions during their time in care, and because of this, it’s hard to stay connected to youth in care. And the reason we know what we’re doing is right is that over 60 percent of the people that come into the program stay in touch.” As for what chefs get out of being involved with Fresh Chefs, it gives them a platform through which they can talk about what they love most and share their passion and knowledge with students, thereby creating a whole new generation of people who love food and appreciate the power food has to bring us together.

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AVVY WOMEN

FROM THE DESK OF

GIRLS WITH PEN POWER

Author Carolyn Cohagan shares her tips for how girls and young women can find success through writing. BY ELIZABETH UCLES, PHOTO BY COURTNEY RUNN

Before spending transformative stints in such locales as Chicago, London and Paris, Carolyn Cohagan began life as a Lake Travis girl who loved art and acting. After finishing school in Austin, Cohagan attended Barnard College to study art history while immersing herself in the world of stand-up comedy and improv. However, after college, stand-up didn’t give Cohagan the storytelling element she desired. She then decided to try theater school in Paris.

Eventually, Cohagan’s interest in theater faded but her love for creative writing never ceased. She thought film was her next move, so she took to Los Angeles to get filmmaking experience, writing and directing short films. But she was turned off by the pre- and postproduction aspects of moviemaking. All Cohagan wanted was to work with her actors. Cohagan began writing a screenplay in prose for a dark fairy tale and just couldn’t stop writing. This screenplay became Cohagan’s first novel, Lost Children, published in 2010. Since then, she hasn’t looked back. To continue her young-adult trilogy, Time Zero, Cohagan researched the effects of religious extremism on girls. This took her to Rwanda in 2013. There, she received a grant to teach writing. The groups of girls Cohagan met inspired her to create her own organization, Girls With Pens, which aims to give a voice to girls 8 to 15 through creative writing. From stand-up comedy to novel writing to serving as a mentor to young girls, Cohagan’s wide-ranging creative endeavors have made her an expert in her field. Here, she shares five pieces of advice for how girls and young women can set themselves up for creative success: 1. Shut down your inner critic. “Yours is twice as loud as any man’s, and it will get in your way,” Cohagan says. “For one day, write down every critical thing you think about yourself. You will learn that you are the meanest mean girl you know. After a few days of doing this, just shut it down.” 2. Surround yourself with smart, funny women who support your work. “Dispose of the naysayers who fill you with doubt,” Cohagan says. 3. Seek out mentors. “Learn from other women’s mistakes so you don’t have to make them,” Cohagan says. “If you don’t have access to them in real life, find them in nonfiction books.” 4. Write. “No matter what career you aspire to, you need to be articulate,” Cohagan says. “Even journaling regularly will help you become more comfortable with the practice of witting. I don’t accept it when students say, ‘I hate writing.’ I say, ‘No, you hate the kind of writing you have tried so far.’ ” 5. Don’t give up. “I am 45, and the women I know who are successful are the ones who stuck with their dreams,” Cohagan says. “The women I know from high school and college are now kicking ass. They have become partners in law firms, professors, an ambassador, two are movie producers and one is a TV star. A lot of my friends started off as actors and the one person who didn’t quit, she is now the TV star.” 26 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018


LAW OFFICE OF JANET MCCULLAR, P.C. Complex Divorce and Custody 512.342-9933 | jmccullarlaw.com


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AVVY WOMEN

PROFILES

BUSINESS IS BLOOMING

Barista turned florist Samantha McCrary is growing a business from the ground up. Flowers were never part of the plan for Samantha McCrary, who, at 27, is one of Austin’s top florists—and one of its youngest. Beyond weddings, her company, Bricolage Curated Florals, provides weekly arrangements for restaurants, hotels and coffee shops throughout town. McCrary started creating floral arrangements in 2011 as part of her weekly barista duties at Houndstooth Coffee, then one of just a few local coffee shops on the rise in Austin. Only 19 years old at the time, McCrary originally wanted to open her own coffee shop, so she saw Houndstooth as an opportunity to learn how small business works. She had always been creative and entrepreneurial, painting in her free time and working on both the corporate and local sides of the service industry, with respective stints at Starbucks and Galaxy Cafe. But she had no previous experience arranging flowers. The seed to start putting together her own bouquets was planted by Houndstooth’s owner, Sean Henry, who saw regular floral arrangements as a small gesture of hospitality in his shop’s mission to “weave the pattern of coffee and people.” McCrary started by buying premade bundles from Central Market, but soon learned about the local business discount at nearby wholesaler Austin Flower Company. “They provide large bundles of one type of flower or greenery, so I was forced to bring all those elements together,” McCrary says of her finds at Austin Flower Company. “It was very much a learned art, but my love for the process made it easier to create with that medium because there was passion behind it.” As her passion and skills developed, her arrangements gained more attention at Houndstooth. Customers started commenting about the flowers as they ordered coffee, and McCrary’s confidence grew. In 2013, she gained her first commercial client when Ben Edgerton asked for weekly arrangements at his newly opened restaurant on Austin’s Eastside, Contigo. “More than anything,” Edgerton says, “Samantha embodies a passion for what she’s doing, and I’m a believer that you should surround yourself with people who are that way.” Her simple, natural-looking arrangements were unique in Austin at the time, which struck Edgerton as an ideal pairing for his restaurant’s interior design. “Contigo is a simple space that’s not meant to be overwhelming,” he says. “The landscape itself plays the main role, and Samantha’s flowers 28 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018

complement that because they aren’t overwrought.” Creating arrangements for her two clients from the dining room of her apartment, McCrary registered her business name, Bricolage Curated Florals, with the State of Texas in 2014. “Picking a business name brings so much vulnerability and expectation to live up to,” McCrary says, but she landed on Bricolage, a French art term meaning “creating from whatever is around you.” “One can be a bricoleur,” says McCrary, who personifies the term’s implied resourcefulness, not just in her arrangements, but also in the way she’s built a business from the ground up, allowing it to bloom in unlikely places like a bluebonnet in the crack of an Austin sidewalk. Standing in her new studio on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, McCrary places French peonies in a white vase for a commercial client while sipping coffee from Houndstooth’s newest location, located right next door. “Of course, I thought it would be superromantic to be right next to where it all started,” she says. Houndstooth’s commitment to hospitality is where she first gained a passion for what McCrary describes on the Bricolage website as “seasoning moments in life.” What Houndstooth weaves between coffee and people, McCrary creates between flowers and people. The fact that her business has grown entirely through wordof-mouth proves how her creations bring people together from different outlets. Days after her 27th birthday in January, the studio, much like her florals, has become a carefully curated design, welcoming clients through the front doors as though they were walking into her kitchen. To the left is her work area, work tables and shears—“all the beautiful mess,” she calls it; to the right is raw shelving with candles, votives and vases for events and weddings. A small stand-up cooler in the back holds retail arrangements and it is situated behind a framed-out wall of exposed wood, McCrary’s favorite element. “I wanted to separate the retail and work space, but I purposely didn’t enclose it so I could plant ivy that will wrap around both sides of the frame and create a very green feel,” McCrary says. The ivy is slow-growing, she says, but she has faith and patience. Her customers, which now include South Congress Hotel, Le Politique and JW Marriott Austin, to name a few, have faith too. “She doesn’t stop hustling,” Edgerton says. “I know she’ll grow that shop into a fully productive enterprise. I see her continuing down the path she’s been on for seven years. I see her continuing to flourish.”

Photo courtesy of Paige Newton Photography.

BY HANNAH PHILLIPS


MADI’S MISSION

Teenager Madi Smyser is on a mission to sell $100,000 worth of baked goods by August, all while maintaining good grades.

Photo courtesy of Madi’s Munchies.

BY KAT BARCLAY Madi Smyser is a precocious 17-year-old entrepreneur. She is well-spoken, hard-working, sweet and altruistic. She sings in the varsity choir at Vandegrift High School, where she is a junior and a member of the National Honor Society. Outside of school, Smyser is involved with Bible study at her church and volunteers weekly at the Bee Cave Public Library. The rest of her free time is devoted to running her business, Madi’s Munchies, a home-based bakery that delivers and ships homemade cookies, granola bars and pumpkin bread in Austin and throughout the country. Smyser has big goals for herself and her business: graduate high school and attend college at Baylor University, and earn $100,000 from the sale of her baked goods by August. That’s a goal she developed after Tom Ferry, a successful realestate coach, challenged her to a bet at his Success Summit conference last August. If Smyser could earn $100,000 in sales through her small business by this year’s Success Summit, Ferry said he would give her $5,000. The only stipulation was she had to maintain her high grade-point average in school. “That’s something that is really important to me,” Smyser says of her grades. Madi’s Munchies originally came about in early 2017, when Smyser began making homemade granola bars for her school lunches. “I’m kind of a picky eater and I just had gotten bored of the same ones from the store,” Smyser says. “So, I just kind of started doing my own research in what I would want in a granola bar and started pulling from different ideas and grabbing different things to make them.” Much to her surprise, Smyser’s friends and family enjoyed the homemade bars, so much so that her dad suggested selling them in the neighborhood to earn money for a car. “I thought, ‘OK, no one is going to buy them, but I’ll try it,’ ” Smyser says.

The idea turned out to be a success, and word quickly spread throughout the neighborhood, sparking a new idea to sell cookies rather than granola bars. Friday and Saturday nights, she began baking and delivering warm homemade cookies created from her grandmother’s recipe. Fast-forward to today, and Smyser’s neighborhood cookie business has grown from a home kitchen and delivery service for nearby neighbors to one that has enabled her to rent a commercial-kitchen space and ship her goodies nationwide. Currently, Madi’s Munchies items are sold at all four Dan’s Hamburger locations in Central Texas, as well as at various Vandegrift High School sporting events and other events Smyser sets up. The business also has a Donate a Dozen program that partners with Community First, an organization that provides affordable housing for the disabled and chronically homeless in Central Texas. When a customer orders a dozen baked goods for the program, Smyser serves up the treats to residents on Thursday evenings. “We came up with the program while we were at the conference. Obviously, all these real-estate agents were there and saw the bet happen and wanted to help me out,” Smyser says. “But since I didn’t have the ability to get them all cookies at that point, we came up with the Donate a Dozen program, where people could order a dozen cookies…that we would bring to Community First.” So far, Smyser has held up her half of the bet by maintaining her high GPA. She recently earned second place in the Baylor University Youth Entrepreneur Awards, adding another achievement to her list of accomplishments. As far as baked-goods sales go, she says she still has some challenges ahead in order to reach her $100,000 goal by August. But Smyser is dedicated to making it happen. For more information about Madi’s Munchies, visit madismunchies.com. ATXWOMAN.COM |  29


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DISCOVER

ACROSS THE POND

From the birth of the royal baby to a royal wedding and countless sightseeing adventures, visiting London has never been more alluring. The clip-clop of hooves reverberates through the street as the queen’s horse-drawn royal carriages roll past an unending procession of taxis and double-decker busses. Sunlight splashes on Kensington’s broad, leafy streets, which are lined with affluent historic residences crawling with fragrant lavender-hued wisteria. A crisp breeze blows through London’s bustling boroughs, and the entire city is abuzz with the unmistakable excitement only royal weddings and the birth of royal babies can bring.

London is brilliant in late spring, and summer days beckon travelers to discover some of the stories and secrets found in this nearly 2,000-year-old city steeped in history and culture. On the heels of the year’s most anticipated nuptials between Prince Harry and actress Meghan Markle, and the arrival of Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge’s third bundle of joy, Louis, a visit to London has never been more alluring. Luckily for Austinites, taking a trip across the pond is also more convenient and affordable than ever. While it’s impossible to see London’s countless attractions in a single trip, here are some suggestions to get you started.

Every guest room is unique at The Milestone Hotel.

STAY

SEE

Book one of the luxurious suites or spacious extended-stay residences at The Milestone Hotel and you can’t help but feel like royalty. Overlooking Kensington Palace and Gardens, the historic five-star hotel exudes Old World charm with uniquely themed rooms and suites bedecked in rich furnishings and original artwork. Guests of the posh property receive personalized business cards upon arrival, “suite treats” each night and perks spanning a chauffeur-driven Bentley, personal yoga instructors and private tours of the neighboring royal residence. Indulge in the hotel’s signature melt-in-your-mouth potroast Dover sole at Cheneston’s Restaurant, sip an Old Fashioned in the intimate Stables Bar or partake in the quintessentially English tradition of afternoon tea accompanied by finger sandwiches, freshly baked scones served with Devonshire clotted cream and jam, and colorful pastries. If you’re celebrating a special occasion, you’ll definitely want to check out the hotel’s resident Confrérie du Sabre d’Or, which includes a demonstration of the art of sabrage (ceremonially opening a Champagne bottle with a saber), as well as an opportunity to sip away on the sparkling stuff.

If the British royal family has inspired your trip to London, gain a glimpse into their lives and storied past by visiting the royal residences. Kensington Palace, tucked into the heart of London, is home to Prince Harry and his new bride, as well as Prince William’s darling family of five. While visitors won’t get a glimpse of their private digs, you can wander through the magnificent King’s and Queen’s State Apartments, adorned with paintings from the royal collection, snap a selfie in front of the flower-filled Sunken Garden and trace the evolution of Princess Diana’s style through the outfits she wore as a princess, fashion icon and humanitarian at the exhibit Diana: Her Fashion Story. Visit sprawling Buckingham Palace, a working royal palace and the official London residence of Queen Elizabeth II, the longest-reigning monarch in British history. Wander through Windsor Castle, the oldest and largest occupied castle in the world, tour the opulent State Apartments and set foot in St. George’s Chapel, one of England’s finest examples of Gothic architecture and the site where the royal newlyweds recently made their vows. If time allows, take a trip to Kew Palace, the intimate royal-family palace retreat located in breathtaking Kew Gardens.

Quintessentially English and delicious, afternoon tea is properly honored at The Milestone Hotel.

Buckingham Palace

30 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018

Photo courtesy of C2 Photography. The Milestone Hotel photos courtesy of The Milestone Hotel. Buckingham Palace photo by Pawel Libera, courtesy of London and Partners and visitlondon.com.

BY MAURI ELBEL


GIft shop photo by Mauri Elbel. London skyline photo by Pawel Libera, courtesy of London and Partners and visitlondon.com.

SHOP

SIP, EAT AND ENJOY THE VIEW

When the sun shines on London’s cobblestone streets, put on your walking shoes to lose yourself on paths less traveled and get a feel for the city’s food and culture by meandering through its local markets on foot. Treat your senses to a tour through Borough Market, a colorful culinary haven on the fringe of the River Thames that bursts with everything from British-raised meats and artisanal baked goods to pastel petits fours and sugar-dusted croissants. Wander through the markets of historic Covent Garden to see British handmade crafts, fashionista-worthy handbags, street performers and five-star restaurants before becoming a “culture vulture” and relishing in one of its numerous theaters. Get lost perusing the vintage shops and stalls of Notting Hill’s mile-long Portobello Road Market, the world’s largest antiques market. Shopping can be found on Brompton Road in Knightsbridge at posh stores like Harrods. Delight the little ones or find souvenirs to bring back home at Hamleys, an overthe-top toy shop established in 1760 that now boasts seven floors and more than 50,000 toys.

Sip a glass of bubbly or Pimm’s while enjoying a spectacular view of London. Skip admission to The Shard, towering above the London Bridge area, and instead, head up to one of the city’s finest restaurants, like Aqua Shard, located on level 31, for drinks and contemporary British cuisine accompanied by 360-degree unobstructed 40-mile views of the London skyline. At the Michelin-starred Galvin at Windows, situated on the 28th floor of the London Hilton on Park Lane in the heart of Mayfair, sip signature cocktails or tuck into a three-course meal while taking in iconic sites such as the London Eye, Canary Wharf and Hyde Park. Back on the ground in Central London, visit historic Trafalgar Square to gaze up at Nelson’s Column, which was erected in 1843. Pose with the bronze lion statues that protect the monument, view priceless works of art for free at The National Gallery or enjoy a hot coffee and cold canapes while people-watching in this vibrant gathering space.

There is no escaping the royalwedding obsession in London.

GETTING THERE Norwegian Airlines recently launched its new nonstop service from Austin-Bergstrom International Airport to London Gatwick Airport, making it easier and more affordable than ever for Austinites to make the trip. The low-cost, transatlantic airline offers nonstop flights between Austin and London three times a week on a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner. Visit norwegian.com for specific fare information.

London skyline with Big Ben and London Eye

ATXWOMAN.COM |  31


UST LIST

ROUNDUP

DOUBLE TAP

Austin Woman selected five female-founded Instagram accounts you should follow. BY SABA GHAFFARI

@BOSSBABESATX

This female-driven and -empowering account offers a community for creativeminded women to gather, share ideas and promote change for gender equality. Founded by Jane Hervey, the nonprofit bossbabesATX hosts regular community meetups, entrepreneurial conferences and professional-development programs. In addition to running bossbabesATX, Hervey is a creative producer, activist, entrepreneur, writer and performance artist. Since its launch in 2015, the organization has hosted more than 50 events and more than 15,000 guests.

@CREATECULTIVATE

@ATX.AND.O

Ashley Brown and Becky Brown are the sisters behind @atx.and.o, an Instagram feed featuring various entrepreneurs, creatives and up-and-comers living in Austin. The sisters’ mission is to provide a platform for local professionals, business owners and artists to share their personal stories. Their goal is to facilitate connections and opportunities among the Austin community. When these ladies aren’t searching for the next awesome Austinite to spotlight, Becky Brown works as a hair artist at Jose Luis Salon, and Ashley Brown is a program manager at Google. Follow them for their #MakerMonday series, a weekly highlight of artisans and manufacturers in Austin, and their #WCW series, a weekly showcase of inspiring Austin-based female entrepreneurs.

Create & Cultivate is the fastest-growing nationwide conference for women who want to, as the name suggests, create and cultivate the career of their dreams. CEO and Founder Jaclyn Johnson is on a mission to empower and support women in the workplace, and the @createcultivate Instagram account is a solid resource for advice catered toward the modern-day working woman. Having sold her first company, (No Subject), when she was 28, and investing in multiple female-owned startups, in addition to running Create & Cultivate, Johnson has no desire to slow down anytime soon. Each Create & Cultivate conference draws more than 1,500 women from throughout the country, and previous events have featured speakers such as Kim Kardashian West, Gloria Steinem, Issa Rae and Jessica Alba.

@DRAKEONCAKE

@LOVECHILDMAG

Drake fans and foodie lovers unite! The @drakeoncake Instagram account is a photo collective of gorgeous cakes that are decorated with the rapper’s lyrics, including frosting inscriptions like “Only love my bed and my mom,” and “Too blessed to be humble.” The account is the creative brainchild of Joy Wilson, a professional baker, food photographer and cookbook author based in New Orleans. Wilson also runs her other Instagram account, @joythebaker, and her food blog, Joy the Baker, which features recipes ranging from homemade pretzels with cheddarbeer dipping sauce to milk-chocolate-cookies-and-cream cookies.

Love Child is a digital space for mothers and parents to receive ideas, recommendations and inspiration regarding the lifestyle of the modern mother. Curated content touches on topics such as style, beauty, health, fitness, travel and first-person stories, as well as pregnancy and motherhood tips. Austin-based wardrobe stylist Cristina Bocanegra created Love Child as a place where she could share her personal journey as a first-time mother. Now quickly approaching two years since the online magazine’s launch, Love Child continues to be the one-stop online resource for Austin mothers.

32 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018

@atx.and.o photo by Erica Tello. @bossbabesatx photo by Cristina Fisher. @createcultivate photo by Caroline Lee. @drakeoncake photo by Joy Wilson. @lovechild photo by Alysha Rainwaters.

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ATX

WOMEN to WATCH Our pages are full of stories of Austin’s most engaging, empowering and successful women, and this section is specially designed to provide you access to even more incredible role models and success stories. Be part of this amazing tribe and share your story with thousands of women. Contact us at sales@awmediainc.com or call 512.328.2421 for more information. BY LAUREN JONES | PHOTOS BY COURTNEY RUNN

SPECIAL PROMOTION | ATXWOMAN.COM |

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ATX

WOMAN to WATCH

LAUREL CORRINNE

FOUNDER AND OWNER OF L AUREL CORRINNE STUDIO

L

aurel Corrinne opened Laurel Corrinne Studio as a uniquely personal and private medical-aesthetics studio. Her innate talent and skill come from studying in Los Angeles and New York and training with European master aestheticians. She has completed countless hours of study and preparation, and spent eight years working alongside a plastic surgeon. Her training, combined with growing up in a family of accomplished artists, adds an artistic sensitivity and skill to all her treatments. Whether she is performing CoolSculpting, a targeted fat-freezing procedure, or giving a photo facial with BroadBand Light therapy, Corrinne has the ability to assess and create the ultimate progression of regimens. She also created the patent-pending Sunless Body Blend, a sunless tan using certified-organic products. laurelcorrinnestudio.com

34 SPECIAL WOMAN PROMOTION | ATXWOMAN.COM 34 |  AUSTIN |  JUNE 2018


ATX

WOMAN to WATCH

S H A N DAV I S

PRESIDENT AND FOUNDER OF CLUB ONE CONCIERGE

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han Davis is the president and founder of Club One Concierge, a personal-assistant and home-management company that serves as one trusted resource for a wide range of projects. As the undisputed chief of everything, she brings new meaning to the role of a personal assistant and has carved out a niche with highinterest professionals. Davis works with an impressive roster of clientele who depend on her for everything from purchasing exotic vehicles, relocating, hiring legal teams, renovating homes and recruiting household staff. After serving in marketing leadership positions, she created a company she wished had been available when she was at the top and there was no time to complete a task list. Davis earned her bachelor’s degree in public relations from Southern Methodist University and has lived in Asia, Australia, England and Spain. She enjoys live music, kickboxing, Austin’s food scene and spending time with her family. cluboneconcierge.com

SPECIAL PROMOTION | ATXWOMAN.COM ATXWOMAN.COM | | 35 35


ATX

WOMAN to WATCH

J A N D ’A L I S E M A R T I N

E XECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT OF OCO BIOMEDICAL AND PRESIDENT OF ASCEND DENTAL ACADEMY

T

hroughout her career, Jan D’Alise Martin has sought to identify gaps and respond with innovative solutions. As executive vice president of OCO Biomedical, a leading supplier of dental-implant technology, Martin saw a high demand for practical, advance-level training and mentoring for dentists seeking to expand their skill sets and grow their practices. In 2017, she cofounded Ascend Dental Academy with one of the world’s most respected implant specialists, Dr. Ara Nazarian. The academy was an instant success, providing training to more than 70 dentists in its first year, with an expected 250 to complete coursework in 2018. Previously, Martin was an executive at Arise Healthcare, where she helped generate more than $70 million in annual earnings. She and her husband have a son and a daughter in college and another daughter in high school. ascenddentalacademy.com | ocobiomedical.com

36 SPECIAL WOMAN PROMOTION | ATXWOMAN.COM 36 |  AUSTIN |  JUNE 2018


ATX

WOMEN to WATCH

ASIA GONCZAR AND IZABELA ULRICH C O - F O U N D E R S O F A P O L O N I A C AT E R I N G

A

sia Gonczar and Izabela Ulrich brought their ideas and passion together to create Apolonia Catering, and in doing so, introduced their native European and Polish cuisines to Austin. In the last three years, they have pursued this dream by staying strong, being confident and always improving. And just like Austin is growing and incorporating those from different cultures and culinary backgrounds, their catering has also continued to include Texan flavors. They want to show that catering can offer a fine-dining experience and not just be food at an event, and offer successfully catered weddings, business lunches, birthday parties and family gatherings using fresh, high-quality ingredients. They are known for their creative and artistic hors d’oeuvres. For them, quality is key to the visual experience of the presentation, the aroma and the taste of what they offer. apoloniacatering.com

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ATX

WOMAN to WATCH

LINDA MCCOY

OWNER OF WATERLOO EDUCATION AND BOARD PRESIDENT AT KEEP AUSTIN BE AUTIFUL

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inda McCoy is the owner and president of Waterloo Education, a niche textbook-consulting company providing correlations between state standards and textbook content. With more than 20 years of experience in this field, she has helped publishers provide educational materials to schools throughout the United States. When she is not reviewing textbooks, she loves to be out on the water, enjoying Austin from her paddleboard or competing in standup paddleboard races. Her love of the water led her to advocate for a cleaner city through her work with Keep Austin Beautiful. She was named board president in 2016 and has served as a leader in the Adopt-a-Creek and Clean Lady Bird Lake programs for 10 years. An Austinite since 1992, she has enjoyed getting to know the city with her two sons. waterlooeducation.com | keepaustinbeautiful.org

38 SPECIAL PROMOTION | ATXWOMAN.COM 38 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018


ATX

WOMAN to WATCH

E S T H E R YA N I V, M D

O W N E R O F A U S T I N S P I N E H E A LT H

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r. Esther Yaniv is a board-certified physical-medicine physician with her practice currently located in Westlake Hills, Texas. As a nonsurgical spine specialist, Yaniv focuses on the spine, neck and lower back. She believes in a comprehensive approach to treatment, which may include physical therapy and pain management, as well as lifestyle modification and weight management. As a certified yoga instructor, Yaniv understands overcoming physical problems is not just about the body, but also about the mind. Many things can contribute to how each of us experience pain. Yaniv has practiced medicine in Austin for more than 12 years. She believes the best outcomes happen when patients take an active role in their recovery as part of a collaborative doctor/patient relationship. When she is not working with patients or teaching yoga, Yaniv enjoys spending time with her husband and her family. Her passions include fitness and travel. austinspinehealth.com

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ATX

WOMAN to WATCH

LESLEY LORENZ

FOUNDING PARTNER OF LORENZ & LORENZ LLP

A

s a wife, mom, community advocate, volunteer and founding partner of Lorenz & Lorenz LLP, Lesley Lorenz embraces a life that revolves around helping others. More than 14 years ago, she was asked by the University of Texas to create and develop a continuing-legal-education program for young attorneys that she still teaches and chairs today. Through her support of organizations like Court Appointed Special Advocates and Stop Abuse for Everyone, she helps advocate for those who don’t have a voice. Through serving as president of the Hill Country Middle School Parent Teacher Organization, a member of the Eanes Independent School District’s Leadership Team and as a member of Eanes Education Foundation’s Leadership Society, she continues to draw attention to the needs of her community. As she sees it, if you want to make the world a little bit better, you’d better speak up. austinaccidentattorney.com

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ATXWOMAN.COM


ATX

WOMAN to WATCH

K AT K R O N E N B E R G B E S T- S E L L I N G A U T H O R

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uthor Kat Kronenberg brings her energy and experience to her best-selling book, Dream Big. Her vision began with a smile she calls “a powerful U-shaped bridge that connects us to everything—our head to our hearts, our lives to one another and our dreams to the power of something greater.” With the tragic loss of both parents, two siblings, the quest for meaning and the example of incredible mentors, she created her Go Big series as mythological fables to show the importance of one’s smile. The heroic African animals in her books, alongside her website, give readers fun, dynamic ways to achieve their best life amid any hardship. Kronenberg’s ability to inspire audiences to believe in themselves and their dreams while creating connection and community has also positioned her as a coveted keynote speaker and presenter for schools. Watch for her next book, Love Big. katkronenberg.com

SPECIAL PROMOTION | ATXWOMAN.COM ATXWOMAN.COM | |  41 41


S

TYLE

TRENDS

GORGEOUS IN GINGHAM

The classic checked pattern is having its moment in everything from swimsuits to cocktail attire. PHOTOS BY RUDY AROCHA STYLED BY MANDI SUMMERS HAIR AND MAKEUP BY MANDY MORRISON MODELED BY SONG FAULKNER SHOT ON LOCATION AT LAKEWAY RESORT AND SPA

Sézane Suzie top, $90, available at nordstrom.com. Mr. Larkin Babette pants in washed denim, $300, available at Olive, 1200 E. 11th St., 512.522.9462, shopolive.us. Acne Studios Joaney high-heel sandals, $500, available at ByGeorge, 524 N. Lamar Blvd., 512.472.5951, bygeorgeaustin.com. Sophie Buhai mixedpearl collar, $425, available at Kick Pleat, 624 N. Lamar Blvd., 512.445.4500, kickpleat.com. Net purse, $22, available at Beehive, 3300 Bee Caves Road, 512.347.0800, lovebeehive.com.

42 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018


SOUTH CONGRESS HOTEL

Paloma Wool Bruna blazer, $240; Paloma Wool Delphi trousers, $178, available at Olive, 1200 E. 11th St., 512.522.9462, shopolive.us. Brandy Melville Kessy tube top, $18, available at nordstrom.com. Circle earrings in orange gingham, $18, available at Beehive, 3300 Bee Caves Road, 512.347.0800, lovebeehive.com. Hat, stylist’s own. Shoes, model’s own.

South Congress Hotel is a boutique hotel located in the heart of Austin's iconic South Congress shopping, dining and entertainment district. South Congress Hotel features 71 guest rooms, 10 suites, two premier suites, three restaurants, a coffee shop, a pool and lobby bar, retail shops, a parking garage and valet service. 1603 S. Congress Ave., 512.920.6405 southcongresshotel.com

$344

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Scafati smocked minidress in black gingham, $95, available at Beehive, 3300 Bee Caves Road, 512.347.0800, lovebeehive.com. Sophie Buhai mixed-pearl collar, $425, available at Kick Pleat, 624 N. Lamar Blvd., 512.445.4500, kickpleat.com. Lizzie Fortunato French marigold earrings, $345, available at Kick Pleat, 624 N. Lamar Blvd., 512.445.4500, kickpleat.com. Maryam Nassir Zadeh Lauren slides, $402, available at Olive, 1200 E. 11th St., 512.522.9462, shopolive.us. Hat, stylist’s own.

ATXWOMAN.COM |  45


Veronique Leroy side-button sweater, $640, available at Kick Pleat, 624 N. Lamar Blvd., 512.445.4500, kickpleat.com. Whit jigsaw shorts, $268, available at Good Company, 918 W. 12th St., 512.520.4402, goodcompany.shop. Feit court shoes, $540, available at Kick Pleat, 624 N. Lamar Blvd., 512.445.4500, kickpleat.com. St, Cat building-turtle earrings, $96, available at Olive, 1200 E. 11th St., 512.522.9462, shopolive.us. White oval sunglasses, $15, available at Luxe Apothetique, 11501 Century Oaks Terrace, 512.346.8202, shopluxe.com.

46 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018


LAKEWAY RESORT AND SPA Nestled on the banks of Lake Travis in the Texas Hill Country, the 168-room Lakeway Resort and Spa creates a distinct, tranquil lake getaway juxtaposed with the urban allure of adjacent Austin. Beckoning guests with lakeside diversions of sailing, boating, fishing and water activities across 65 miles of lake shore, the family-friendly resort boasts a boutique spa with panoramic lake views, a pool promenade of three large freshwater swimming pools with water features, a variety of culinary and beverage options, as well as extensive meeting-and-event space, including an impressive glass ballroom with stunning vistas from every angle. 101 Lakeway Drive, Lakeway, Texas, 512.261.6600 www.lakewayresortandspa.com

Off-the-shoulder ruffle top in antique pink gingham, $38, available at Beehive, 3300 Bee Caves Road, 512.347.0800, lovebeehive.com. Black ribbed ruffle pants, $55, available at dylanwylde.com. Big E by Anjeca earrings, $128, available at Good Company, 918 W. 12th St., 512.520.4402, goodcompany.shop. Rejina Pyo Conie slingback heels, $610, available at Kick Pleat, 624 N. Lamar Blvd., 512.445.4500, kickpleat.com.

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S

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CARBON CLEAN

Add some detox to your beauty routine. PHOTO BY COURTNEY RUNN

Clockwise from top left: Primal Pit Paste Tough Teeth charcoal tooth powder, $8.95, available at primalpitpaste.com. Black Hatchet Grit organic charcoal body wash, $14.95, available at latikasoap.com. Black Hatchet Hunter activated charcoal bar soap, $7.95, available at latikasoap.com. Hask charcoal purifying dry shampoo, $8.49, available at walgreens.com. Garnier Clean+ blackhead-eliminating scrub, $9.49, available at walgreens.com. L'Oréal Paris Pure-Clay Detox & Brighten treatment mask, $12.99, available at walgreens.com. Lush Coalface cleansing charcoal bar, $14.95, available at lushusa.com. Primal Pit Paste charcoal magnesium daily detox deodorant, $8.95, available at primalpitpaste.com.

48 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018


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WOMAN TO

WATCH?

Receive the recognition YOU deserve as one of Austin’s success stories.

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Each month, Austin Woman features 10 ATX Women to Watch in a beautiful special promotional section.

Included in the package is: r Full-page profile in the magazine r Custom photoshoot in your choice of location (and you keep the photo for personal use!) r Feature email blasts and social media posts r Invitation to a private Facebook networking group r Invitation to three exclusive ATX Woman to Watch connection events

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H

OME

MAKE ROOM

KEEP AUSTIN FUNKY

Interior designer Maureen Stevens chats about how to mix patterns, colors and styles for a unique and well-put-together look. BY LAUREN JONES

Photos by Laura Logan.

Maureen Stevens, owner of Maureen Stevens Design, has always had a passion for creating visually stunning spaces and charming vignettes, and her use of color, patterns and functional elements has helped her make a name for herself in the Austin design world. While her personal style is approachable, fun and full of character, she continues to be inspired with each new project. Austin Woman recently sat down with Stevens as she shared the vision behind one of her latest redesigns, a onebedroom condo overlooking downtown Austin.

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GET THE LOOK DON’T BE AFRAID TO MIX STYLES.

“Interesting spaces with depth and drama call for mixing different styles. … A cohesive space calls for balance, scale and proportion, and exudes unity and rhythm, despite having furnishings that can be categorized in different styles.” IT’S ALL ABOUT COLOR.

“Sure, white is universal and gray is now a classic, but to have some emphasis in a room, adding a vibrant color is the way to go.” SUPPORT LOCAL.

“Austin has a bevy of talented artisans, makers, artists and proprietors. Finding [pieces] is only part of the fun of designing, and supporting local is the icing on the cake.” DON’T UNDERESTIMATE THE IMPORTANCE OF FUNCTIONALITY.

“”

“Though we filled this space with tons of accessories, creating a beautiful space starts with thinking about function and space planning. Design kicks off with envisioning how the space will be used. [It’s] not about spaces; it’s about people. The living room functions as an office space as well as a guest bedroom. The dining room is perfect for dinner for four and the living-room center tables double as stools for extra seating when there’s more company.” HAVE FUN.

“When designing your own space, have fun with it. ... Sure, there are some rules and principles to follow, but what is a room without your personality and spin on it? Fill it with items you absolutely love and mementos you will keep forever.” "This space is all about fun and funk, combining Austin’s bohemian flair, laid-back style and easy attitude, but in a way that is cohesive, refreshing and bold at the same time. We made it a point to shop local, scouring vintage shops and small boutiques. It’s part Southwestern but all Texan as well, with cacti, faux cowhide rugs, antlers and horns." – Maureen Stevens

IN THIS ROOM Room photo by Laura Logan. Maureen Stevens photo by Andrew Chan.

LIVING ROOM

• 2 Danes sleeper sofa • burl-wood console and rattan peacock chair from Scoops Vintage Modern • Wayfair leather papasan chair • Wayfair malachite stool • art from One Kings Lane • Fable bohemian rug from Justina Blakeney for Loloi Rugs • macramé hanging from Slow Down Productions on Etsy • vintage floor lamp and office chair • vintage trunks, vases, pillows and throws from Maureen Stevens’ personal collection BEDROOM

• Wayfair bed • vintage nightstand • Wayfair wooden stool ON THE WALLS

• Etsy cactus mural and lime wall décor • Sherwin Williams Lucky Green 6926

ATXWOMAN.COM |  51


Y T R A P GIRL Packed Party Founder Jordan Jones proves that adding a few irresistibly delightful amusements—in the form of cocktail sippy cups, cupcake-flavored beauty products, festive themed gifts and a whole lot of confetti—can turn an everyday get-together into a celebration and make any hostess the life of the party. BY CRYSTAL ZUZEK | PHOTOS BY ANNIE RAY MAKEUP BY TIFFANY TAYLOR | STYLED BY MANDI SUMMERS SHOT ON LOCATION AT PLAYLAND SKATE CENTER

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When Jordan Jones embarked on her life adventure in 2013, the Plano, Texas, native left behind her family and the one fulltime job she’d had since graduating with a degree in journalism from Oklahoma State University the previous year. The selfdescribed party girl, who was 23 at the time, yearned to live in San Francisco, and got her chance when she accepted a marketing job with a data-analytics company. Optimistic and excited for what the future would hold, Jones, now the 28-year-old CEO of Austin-based lifestyle gifting service Packed Party, was unprepared for some of the harsh realities that often accompany life far from home. “I really wanted to get to San Francisco,” Jones says, “but the job wasn’t in my wheelhouse at all. I was the Elle Woods of the office, and I stuck out like a sore thumb.” Her daily two-hour commute to Silicon Valley and the $3,000 monthly rent payment that accompanied the 500-square-foot maids quarters she lived in made life challenging. Feeling low one evening, she called her mom to tell her she was bored at work and worried she’d made a mistake by moving to the West Coast. Her mother responded with some tough love. “My mom said, ‘You know what, Jordan? You’re having a pity party. Go to bed,’ ” Jones remembers. That night, she followed her mother’s orders and had a vivid dream in which she sent herself a “pity-party package.” “When I woke up, I sat straight up in bed and wrote all my notes in my phone,” Jones says, adding that she had a clear image of her business logo and wanted the concept to revolve around subscription-free, party-for-one boxes containing experiential party goods. In the fall of 2013, without any business experience or a mentor to guide her, Jones took a leap of faith and followed her dream. Packed Party was born. “The way it happened was kind of magical,” Jones says. “I had a dream, and it sparked my journey to create Packed Party.” The company sells fun, modern-day, curated gift packages that bring the party right to your door. Wrapped in a chic navy box, each package is filled with luxe novelty items that tie into a theme. For example, the Birthday Beb package includes items like cupcake-scented lotion, birthday confetti candy, birthdaycake lip scrub and a Make a Wish trinket tray. (According to the Packed Party website, a “beb” is a “better version of a babe,” and a birthday beb “deserves all the attention!”) In 2016, Jones moved the Packed Party headquarters to Austin. While party packages are still signature items for sale on the website, the product line has grown to include kitschy doormats, travel cups, drink sleeves and plenty more party-ready accoutrements. Today, the fearless, intuition-driven business owner employs 10 people out of her pet-friendly North Austin office. Under Jones’ leadership, Packed Party has flourished and sells consumer goods to more than 4,000 stores, including retail heavyweights Neiman Marcus and Dillard’s.

Page 53: Solid & Striped Anne-Marie one-piece swimsuit, $168, available at ByGeorge, 524 N. Lamar Blvd., 512.472.5951, bygeorgeaustin.com. Just Black high-rise, slit flare jeans, $85, available at Beehive, 3300 Bee Caves Road, 512.347.0800, lovebeehive.com. Scarf, stylist’s own.

Page 54: Yellow floral dress, $85, available at Beehive, 3300 Bee Caves Road, 512.347.0800, lovebeehive.com. Party Don’t Stop headband, available at packedparty.com.

Get This Party Started Packed Party began as a side hustle for Jones, who initially sold five themed party packages at $45 each, available online and shipped from her mom’s garage in Texas. As she was getting the business off the ground, Jones employed some unconventional marketing tactics. To spread the word about her fledgling business, she wrote a BuzzFeed article and posted it on the site’s community section. The story went viral. Next thing she knew, a writer at the San Francisco Chronicle wanted to tell her story. “The day the article came out, I was fired from my full-time job because I was incubating on another idea,” Jones says. Rather than let that setback derail her, she hit the job search hard. She eventually landed at a corporate-recruitment firm, where she scouted personal assistants. The job allowed her to pay rent and still have time to devote to Packed Party. Knowing she needed to make a big splash but lacking any marketing dollars, Jones started the Packed Party blog. “I didn’t focus on funding but on building the brand. I wanted to provide my customers with a solution,” she says. The blog led to a partnership with fashion designer Rebecca Minkoff, who offered a custom Packed Party gift with purchase in her New York and San Francisco boutiques as part of a kickoff promotion for Coachella. Customers received a miniature version of a Packed Party package that contained items like facial mist and hair feathers. The marketing move exposed Jones’ business to East Coast media, including the women behind Betches Media, originally called Betches Love This. Jones curated a custom package for Betches Love This that sold out instantly. Overnight, she gained 20,000 new Instagram followers. Shortly thereafter, Reese Witherspoon got wind of Packed Party. The actress’ brand, Draper James, partnered with Jones to sell a Thanks a Brunch custom package. By this time in 2015, Packed Party offered direct-toconsumer products sold exclusively through the company’s website, packedparty.com. Jones hadn’t shelled out any money for advertising or marketing, yet investors started showing interest in the company. “I had brand awareness and was finally making money,” Jones says, adding that she was able to secure an investor based in Houston.

Page 57: Shaina Mote Lua top, $330; vintage suede vest set (not shown: matching skirt), $56, available at Olive, 1200 E. 11th St., 512.522.9462, shopolive.us. Jesse Kamm sailor pants, $395, available at Kick Pleat, 624 N. Lamar Blvd., 512.445.4500, kickpleat.com. Packed Party Doorstep necklace, $98, available at packedparty.com. Alliewatch x Eythink Multitudes hoop earrings, $24, available at eythink.com.

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Break Out the Confetti With financing in hand, Jones quit her headhunting job and opened her first Packed Party office in an old Victorian house overlooking the Golden Gate Bridge. “I was growing this cult, loyal following, this community of party girls,” Jones says. “The brand partnerships resonated with them, and they felt included in what I was creating.” The young CEO knows how to preach the partygirl gospel on social media and how to speak to her fellow millennials. “That 23- to 35-year-old female customer base is our sweet spot,” she says. “That’s who heavily uses social media. We’re a digitally native brand, so people find us through social media and bloggers. People become obsessed, tag their friends and then the snowball is rolling.” And Jones unabashedly invites her customers to share the party on social media. Her effective marketing efforts have been pivotal to the brand loyalty Packed Party has achieved. The business has garnered more than 84,000 Instagram followers, nearly 13,000 Facebook followers and 4,000-plus Twitter followers. With the business growing, Jones decided it was time to start designing her own Packed Party products. Her first offering—a 24-karat-gold-dipped Doorstep necklace that’s engraved with the customer’s house number—was popular but pricey at $98. In her quest for a more affordable product with mass appeal, Jones dreamed up the Disco Drink, a plastic, reflective and dazzling mirror-ball cup with a twist-off top and pink straw. Jones calls the launch of the Disco Drink in late 2015 a “game changer” for Packed Party. The product was a hit and even made an appearance in the hands of Today Show personalities Hoda Kotb and Jenna Bush. “The Disco Drink was the first product we manufactured ourselves, and it allowed us to expand our business into wholesale,” Jones says, adding that gift retailer Paper Source was her first wholesale customer. “From there, I could get the product into more hands quickly and grow brand awareness in an even bigger way.”

Party On Jones has lofty goals for the upscale gifting empire she’s building. Her plans involve securing international distribution, finding another investor, expanding the product line and experimenting with pop-up events in Austin. “People contact us every week wanting to come to our office to buy products. We always send them to our retailers, but I would love to fill that niche in Austin with pop-up events,” she says. As she reflects on how much she has accomplished in such a short time, Jones is grateful for the support she has received from family, friends and colleagues. Her father even serves on her board of directors. “I wouldn’t be where I am without my team,” Jones says. “I love sharing the company’s success with them.” 56 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018


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FIVE WAYS JORDAN JONES STRIKES WORK/LIFE BALANCE

PLAYLAND SKATE CENTER

rJ  ournal. Keep a journal to document growing pains, wins and what’s happening in your business. Hold on to every journal to look back on what you’ve been through and how far you’ve come.

Playland Skate Center offers the finest in skating entertainment, with an impressive light show, fog machine and state-of-the-art sound system playing a wide variety of music. Its extra-large skating facility, at 27,500 square feet, is Austin’s largest. Playland Skate Center has been in business since 1973, offering children and adults a safe, fun, clean and entertaining roller-skating experience. The mission of Playland Skate Center is to provide family-oriented entertainment that entices customers to enjoy its affordable, safe skating environment. Playland offers excellent customer service, quality skates to customers and gives back to the community. Playland wants all its customers, regardless of whether they are actually skating, to have fun and enjoy themselves while at the facility.

rS  ay no. Learn to say no to things that do not work with your schedule. If a young professional asks Jordan Jones to coffee and she can’t make it, she asks that person to listen to one of her recorded podcasts for advice and guidance. packedparty.com/podcast rU  nplug. Set aside time that doesn’t involve work and that allows you to disconnect. Jones goes on a lot of walks with her Bernese mountain dog, Truman, Packed Party’s resident party animal. rM  editate. Jones says she’s still working on meditating regularly but finds peace in being still and quiet. rE  xercise. Take time to step away from the office and breathe. Jones schedules a lot of walking meetings outdoors. To see Jordan Jones’ Top Five Tips for Building a Brand, visit atxwoman.com.

Zadig & Voltaire Ruby graphic crewneck T-shirt, $118; AO.LA Gorgeous high-rise, wide-leg jeans with rainbow back pockets, $350, available at Neiman Marcus, 3400 Palm Way, 512.719.1200, neimanmarcus.com. Berry drop earrings, $32, available at Beehive, 3300 Bee Caves Road, 512.347.0800, lovebeehive.com. Packed Party roller-skate drink sleeve, $9.95, available at packedparty.com.

58 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018

8822 McCann Drive, 512.452.1901 playlandskatecenter.net


YOU DIDN’T WAKE UP TODAY

TO BE MEDIOCRE Step 1

POUR YOUR

COFFEE

Step 2

Step 3

MASCARA

“LISTEN”

GRAB YOUR

Rich Content. Audible. Only 4 Minutes. Free.

ONTHEDOTWOMAN.COM

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The Art of the Unconventional Foster ATX’s intimate pop-up events are redefining what it means to network. BY NICHOLAS BARANCYK

spontaneity and plan the unplanned? This was the challenge the three women behind Foster ATX shouldered when they landed in Austin. If they shrank the number of guests and elevated the intimacy, they figured human connection would follow. Since then, it’s been their mission to nurture these serendipitous moments through pop-up events held throughout the city.

Photo by Sydney Gawlik.

There are places we remember for the way they make us feel: anxious and intrigued, jubilant or grateful. It’s in these spaces some unexpected connection occurs, weaving that moment forever into our memories. Suddenly, that place feels important and that experience, special. Recreating that feeling is a struggle, for its elusiveness is part of what makes it worthwhile. How do you capture

60 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018


It is intentional The inspiration for Foster ATX stems from Stephanie Gutierrez, Shelby Goodwin and Sara Barge’s European travels. In Belgium, they discovered the power of musical immersion at an underground jazz club. In Portugal, their chance conversation with a chef taught them the importance of impromptu connection. It was these encounters that would go on to shape what Foster ATX would become. But when they returned stateside, their marketing jobs lacked the luster and sense of discovery they so deeply cherished while abroad. They wanted to bring everything invigorating about travel back home. “A lot of traveling is just new experiences, so everything feels really exciting,” Goodwin says. “So, we’re trying to bring that to our community...because I think there are so many opportunities to experience ‘new’ here.” Each month, the women challenge themselves to concoct new and captivating experiences. These events are packaged into a series of occasions during a single weekend and typically include one dinner and one or two concerts. And at the nucleus of each pop-up event is this initial seed of intention, something Gutierrez describes as “finding meaning in each little detail and each conversation, and diving wholeheartedly into that.”

Top photo by Rui Nakata. Bottom photo by Bailey Toksoz.

Personal space Each Foster ATX series takes place within a single venue, so a natural connection with the environment is established during the weekend. Goodwin says this element is crucial for formulating their monthly theme. “The space is typically where we start off in creating these experiences,” she says, “feeling what that space invokes, and from there, pairing it.” One of the recent Foster ATX gatherings, entitled Wood, set guests amid a centuryold pecan grove at Tillery Place. After the site was chosen, undertones of warmth and fire were brought into every aspect of the event, from the cigar lounge and grilled focaccia bread to the bluegrass folk tunes of the Troll Smashers. Gutierrez says much of the women’s work involves simply figuring out how all the pieces of an event tie together. However, they all say each new dinner or show isn’t about topping the last. Rather, it’s about finding something completely unique and “diving into the stories of our core elements,” as Goodwin puts it. For them, each month is a new opportunity to bring people together and watch the Foster ATX family tree grow. ATXWOMAN.COM |  61


Finger food to flamethrowers

As vital as it is to an event, the setting is just a tool serving a higher purpose. The women “set the space where [guests] can walk in completely vulnerable,” Gutierrez says. “[That] allows for these connections to happen. I think that begins the second that someone walks through the door.” However, this “door” is open to interpretation. It could be a flower-laden pergola or a loading-bay garage. In choosing unconvential spaces and transforming them into something unexpected, the women of Foster ATX spark an immediate sense of wonder that breaks down social inhibitions. “Right when you walk into the event, it’s so crazy and unusual, you’ve already broken the ice,” says Brandon Roye, a pop-up event attendee. Underlying everything, though, is this substring of intimacy, this sense of mutual vulnerability and interconnection with one another. “Intimacy is so much about that feeling of belonging and being cared for,” Gutierrez says. The women achieve this through consistently challenging their guests to step beyond their comfort zones and be bold. Chefs, artists and musicians are encouraged to share their stories and passions, which the Foster ATX founders hope will, in turn, inspire audiences to follow theirs. Goodwin says this physical connection with others is more important now than ever. She explains that in the age of social media, there can be the illusion of feeling connected, yet that connection lacks the physical intimacy necessary in true friendship. “I think people are craving it,” she says. “And maybe they don’t realize it, but they are.” During the last two years of hosting pop-up events, the trio has learned an audience of 150 can be just as intimate as an audience of 20. The women say it’s common to see people who walk in as complete strangers hugging by the end of the night and staying long after they’re supposed to leave. “I’ve been to an embarrassing amount of networking events, and this never happens anywhere else,” Roye says. These fast-tracked friendships are a testament to how principle a role ambience plays in our social lives and Foster ATX’s finesse at bringing the two together.

It wasn’t until their flight to Austin in 2016 that the idea of Foster ATX began taking shape in the founders’ minds. Leaving their marketing jobs in Atlanta behind, the trio stepped off the plane with a purpose. They networked. They planned. For their first event, they passed out invitations in blank envelopes to strangers on Sixth Street. “We came in very hot,” Goodwin says. And they had to. With almost no connections in the city and a website still in development, guerilla marketing and organized lists of who’s texting whom were all these three 24-year-olds had. This initial fire still fuels them. “That relentless spirit that we had,” Goodwin says, “we’re constantly trying to bring it back because that’s when we were so alive and eager.” Twenty-five people attended the women’s first concert, a backyard affair with mellow lighting and guests sitting cross-legged on the grass. “That intention was set that we weren’t going to be on our phones, and we weren’t going to be trying to compete with all this noise,” Gutierrez says. “Just sitting there and listening...was so special.” She says Foster ATX has changed dramatically in the past two years, but each event still has that same intimate feel as that first one. As their overall production increases, so do the number of incorporated elements. At the last event, called Charcoal, 80 guests gathered at Delta Millworks for mezcal cocktails, soulful jazz, a multicourse Indian dinner and a workshop dedicated to shou sugi ban—a traditional Japanese method of preserving wood through burning it—complete with a flamethrower. But despite the growing spectacle, Gutierrez says each element is carefully chosen for its beauty, simplicity and subtle capacity to linger. Now the Foster ATX trio is expanding with a sister company, Well Chosen. It is built as more of a traditional event-planning agency, so organizations will be able to engage the trio’s services for private events with a Foster ATX feel. “We’re always looking for new ways to evolve,” Goodwin says, “and keep connecting people together.”

The soul of Foster ATX is that of discovery. It’s the finding of cracks just to see where the light shines through. And like a canvas to a pinhole camera, the events expose realities strange and fresh and full of possibility. As community champions and passion pushers, the women of Foster ATX are uniting travelers of disparate worlds in a backyard near you.

62 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018

Photo by Syndey Gawlik.

Intimate buildings


“Intimacy is so much about that feeling of belonging and being cared for.” ­­— Stephanie Gutierrez

A BEGINNER’S GUIDE TO MAGIC MOMENTS It’s not always easy to mix and mingle. To liven up your own shindig, the women behind Foster ATX share some of their tips and tricks to add an extra layer of intimacy to any party.

Matching wristbands When paired with random guests, matching wristbands can help break the ice. Encourage your guests to find their wristband mate and strike up a conversation.

Photo by Syndey Gawlik.

Mix-and-match seating Assigned seating bestows a feeling of personal care for your guests. To encourage new connections, sit a guest’s plus-one either opposite or diagonal from her. Stephanie Gutierrez says the natural human instinct is to turn to the most familiar person in the room and lock everyone else out. By mixing up the seating, you encourage fewer turned backs and more open-table discussion.

Cutting to the quick Use comment cards with questions that jet past the small talk. Doing so inspires more interesting conversations for those involved. Instead of conversation starters like, “How long have you lived in Austin?” opt for questions along the lines of, “What was your last now-or-never moment?” ATXWOMAN.COM |  63


G

OURMET

RECIPE REVEAL

HOW TO MAKE A VEGAN MILKSHAKE

Whip up a delicious dairy-free sweet treat this summer. BY KAT BARCLAY, PHOTO BY COURTNEY RUNN

Rachel Horesovsky and Moni Burgin’s dessert-focused food truck, Milky Way Shakes, has become the goto spot for those who have embraced a plant-based diet in Austin. After the pair worked as chocolatiers in Washington, D.C., best friends Horesovsky and Burgin picked up and headed to Austin to open the city’s first food truck serving vegan milkshakes, located just outside Spider House north of the University of Texas campus.

OREO BOREALIS SHAKE Ingredients 1 cup vegan vanilla or chocolate ice cream (Pro tip: Use a local brand like NadaMoo! or Sweet Ritual.) 1/2 cup almond milk (Pro tip: Milky Way Shakes uses Almond Breeze.) 1/4 tablespoon mint extract 5 to 6 Oreos, crushed (Fun fact: Oreos are vegan.) Vegan whipped cream, for garnish (Pro tip: Use local brand Whole Foods 365.) Directions 1. Blend the ice cream, almond milk and mint extract together, adding in the crushed Oreos last. 2. G  arnish the shake with Oreo crumbles and vegan whipped cream.

64 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018

Founded in September 2017, Milky Way Shakes features a milkshake menu—essentially a black hole of fun, astronomy-themed treats—that includes creative concoctions made from almond milk and coconut-milk ice cream. One shake that continues to bring people to the food truck’s front yard is the Oreo Borealis, the perfect treat to satisfy any sweet tooth this summer.


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G

OURMET

GIRL WALKS INTO A BAR

RUN AWAY WITH THE CIRCUS

Second Street’s newest bar and DIY craft shop, Upstairs Circus, invites Austinites to create, drink and be merry. BY RACHEL HOLTIN

One such good-time hot spot is the new Second Street bar meets workshop, Upstairs Circus. The bar is designed specifically for creators and hosts regular “project socials,” get-togethers through which circus visitors can complete a DIY arts-and-craft project from Upstairs Circus’ many options. The project menu has more than 25 options, with craft categories ranging from handmade jewelry to wall art to libations goods like flasks and koozies to lifestyle products like dog collars, passport wallets and leather luggage tags. Projects come complete with supplies, tools and a photo tutorial with step-by-step instructions. Though teachers don’t lead the project socials, knowledgeable staff members are readily available to help out as needed. Before getting started on any Upstairs Circus project, it’s recommended you head to the bar for a beverage to help get the creative juices flowing. The bar menu features a selection of craft beers, including several local options, as well as wine and specialty cocktails and even a couple nonalcoholic offerings. One favorite is the Mexican Firebreather cocktail, essentially a spicy margarita, with Herradura tequila, Grand Marnier, lime and fresh jalapeño served with a chili rim and the perfect amount of spice. Another highlight is the Circus Donkey, with Deep Eddy grapefruit vodka, ginger beer and lime.

66 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018

Photos by Daniela Lewkowicz.

It’s no secret Austin has an eclectic bar scene. From historic live-music venues to Sixth Street, there is an incredible number of options for anyone looking for a drink and a good time.


Drink in hand, it’s time to begin your project. Upstairs Circus notes how long each project usually takes to complete, and also provides info about how difficult projects are on a challengelevel scale. Between indulging in cocktails and truffle popcorn, Instagram-photo opportunities and fun conversation with friends at the table, time definitely flies, so it may end up taking you a bit longer to complete your craft project than you initially thought. But that’s OK. After all, working on a DIY project can be quite therapeutic and a nice way to unwind from a long day at work while also disconnecting from the digital world of your smartphone for a few hours. The best part is you can actually take your crafty masterpiece home the same day you make it. If you want to give your piece some extra time to dry completely or set, that’s fine too. Just leave it at the front with your name and phone number. Info to note before attending an Upstairs Circus project social: • The only snack available is popcorn but Upstairs Circus does allow outside food. • Reservations are not required but are highly recommended. Reserve a spot by visiting upstairscircus.com or calling 512.559.7571. • Arrival time is flexible within an hour and a half of the scheduled start time. For those not ready to DIY, guests are also welcome to enjoy a cocktail at the bar without joining in on a project. There are adult coloring books and games like Barrel of Monkeys to help keep you entertained. Now’s your chance, Austin: create, drink and be merry!


G

OURMET

FOOD NEWS

FAMILY ROOTS

Hmart President Stacey Kwon highlights what shoppers can find at the Asian supermarket chain’s first Austin location. BY SABA GHAFFARI

“Food is essential to cultural identity and understanding,” says Stacey Kwon, president of Hmart. “For some, it is having that taste of their homeland and being able to share their culture through food with others.” The grocery chain, which specializes in Asian food and products, opened its first Austin location earlier this year. While shoppers can expect the same fresh, highquality food found in other Hmarts, the Austin location is unique in that it is the first Hmart to have a Market Eatery, a food hall attached to the grocery store. “Having a food hall attached to a supermarket creates a mini ecosystem,” Kwon explains. “The chefs at Market Eatery have their own farmers market just steps away in Hmart.” The Market Eatery offers many foodand-drink options for shoppers, such as sizzling hot-stone-pot bibimbap, bubbling tofu soup, Singapore beer and 99-cent beers like Rolling Rock and Lone Star. The Market Eatery also offers live music from local bands such as Beat Root Revival. The Market Eatery is Kwon’s latest creation for Hmart. Since becoming president in 2010, Kwon has focused her efforts heavily on customer experience and has created several houseware brands for the company in addition to the Market Eatery. In 2013, Kwon graduated from the French Culinary Institute, further diversifying her knowledge of food and cooking. Her father opened the very first Hmart store, so it goes without saying Kwon’s loyalty to Hmart runs deep. From a young age, Kwon started working at Hmart alongside her father and other family members, starting out as a bagger then working as a cashier and eventually taking on other jobs in the store. 68 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018

While Hmart has certainly grown since those early days, Kwon says her dad treats every store opening as if it is the one that will make or break Hmart. “I’ve learned a lot about leadership growing up watching my dad work and how he treats others,” Kwon says. “And I continue to learn from him every day.”

Photo courtesy of Hmart.

What started as a small familyrun corner grocery store in the Woodside neighborhood of Queens, N.Y., has evolved into a major supermarket chain with more than 60 locations throughout the nation and more stores planned. Amid the chain’s growth in the last 36 years, one thing has always remained the same for Hmart: It is a place for people to share culture through food.


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HOW TO GET YOUR CAR READY FOR THE TEXAS SUMMER HEAT BY CHELSEA BANCROFT

If you couldn’t tell by the nearly triple-digit temperatures, summer is here! And while that means more frozen drinks, trips to Barton Springs and days on the lake, it also means more issues can potentially arise with your vehicle. The heat can take a real toll on your car, but there are steps you can take to protect it during the blazing summer months. CHECK YOUR CAR’S TIRE PRESSURE. Going back to that lesson from your middle-school science class, when temperatures rise, gas expands. That applies to the air in your car’s tires. It’s important to make sure your tires are inflated properly so you don’t risk having a blowout. Be prepared by keeping a sparetire kit and/or tire sealant in your vehicle, especially during the summer months, when a blowout is more likely to happen.

KEEP UP WITH YOUR CAR’S AIR CONDITIONER.

CHANGE YOUR CAR’S OIL.

Can you imagine anything worse than a Texas summer without air conditioning? Those 20 seconds it takes to cool a car down is torture enough. Regularly replacing your vehicle’s cabin air filters helps prolong the life of your air-conditioning system. At your next oil change or before a long road trip, have the mechanic check your A/C system for any problems. Catching them early can save you a lot of money—and sweat. Getting sunshades for your vehicle’s windows can help keep passengers cool too.

Regardless of the time of year, it’s imperative to keep up with your vehicle’s recommended oil-change schedule. Many people travel more during the summer, so it’s important to remember that oil-change schedules are based on mileage, not time. Check your car’s owner’s manual for the recommended intervals and type of oil needed for your specific car; not all are the same. In fact, they can vary greatly. Who knew the owner’s manual was actually useful and not just taking up space in your glove box?

REPLACE YOUR CAR’S COOLANT.

I recommend keeping extra water bottles and an emergency medical kit in your car at all times, but it’s especially important when temperatures are high. You don’t want to have car troubles and get stranded in the severe heat that comes with Texas summers without any water. That can be extremely dangerous. You can also use water in the event you don’t have coolant.

This one sounds like a no-brainer, and it is. The whole job of your vehicle’s cooling system is to keep the engine from overheating. To ensure it can to its job properly, make sure you flush and replace your vehicle’s coolant as needed. (Check the owner’s manual for the recommended schedule.) If you let your vehicle’s coolant levels get too low, it can seriously damage your engine, and that’s no cheap fix. It’s a good idea to top off all your car’s fluids, in general, as heat makes them evaporate faster. This includes transmission, brake, power-steering and windshield-wiper fluid.

Photo by Matt Littlefield.

CHECK THE BATTERY. Summer heat can really take a toll on your vehicle’s battery. While you aren’t able to control the weather, you can make sure your battery is securely mounted in place. This keeps the battery from vibrating, which causes excess heat buildup that can ultimately lead to battery failure. Always keep a set of jumper cables in your car, particularly during summer months, when the heat puts more strain on your battery.

KEEP AN EMERGENCY KIT IN YOUR CAR.

There is another thing I feel I must mention regarding vehicles in the severe summer heat: Never leave children or pets unattended in a vehicle for any length of time, even with the windows cracked. On a day that is 85 degrees (cool by Texas summer standards), the inside of a car can reach nearly 110 degrees in just 10 minutes. After 30 minutes, it can rise to more than 120 degrees. Don’t risk it!

Chelsea Bancroft is the strategic-partnerships and social-media manager at Roger Beasley Mazda and a blogger at onechelofanadventure.com.


W

ELLNESS

WAITING ROOM

MENSTRUAL CUPS 101

Get the facts. BY LAURYN LAX

You know the story all too well: That time of the month hits and you resort to rummaging in your purse every four to six hours, urgently searching for another tampon or pad. Or worse, you’ve started your period and are not prepared. You start counting down the days until you’re free from having to deal with the cramps, cravings, heightened emotions, messy tampons and soggy pads. Enter menstrual cups, a reusable alternative to pads and tampons that can withstand eight to 12 hours of your flow before requiring a reset. A menstrual cup is a piece of plastic, latex or rubber shaped like a bell or cone that is placed in the vagina and catches period flow before it even reaches a pad.

They are less toxic for your health: Menstrual cups are typically allergen-free and made from a special medical-grade hypoallergenic silicone, while tampons and pads can be made from a variety of materials, including:

PROS

• fragrances

It’s a potential money saver: According to some experts, the average woman spends $7 to $10 every month on tampons or pads (about 240 tampons each year), and more than $1,700 throughout her lifetime (about 450 cycles) to keep her period in control. With a menstrual cup, women make a one-time investment of $20 to $40 for something that can last as long as 10 years, though some require replacement annually. They are eco-friendly: One menstrual cup can do the job of as many as 1,625 tampons. This is a no-brainer when considering the waste we create with disposable period products. In fact, it’s estimated that every year, more than 45 billion period-related products are thrown into the garbage. Tampons make up a large part of that weight. For instance, the Ocean Conservancy claims it collected 27,938 used tampons and applicators from beaches throughout the world in a single day in 2015.

• phthalates • surfactants, adhesives and additives • polyethylene plastic • dioxin (a carcinogen and a byproduct of bleaching) • synthetic fiber rayon (linked to toxic shock syndrome) • chlorine

CONS

They can be messy: The primary disadvantage women note about menstrual cups is that emptying the cup can be messy. However, with a little practice, most women can work out a suitable technique and quickly get over the “gross factor.” There’s a learning curve: Learning to insert and remove the cup takes a few trials, just like learning how to use a tampon for the first time. Maintenance can be tricky: After each cycle, it’s recommended women sterilize the cup using boiling water or a sterilizing solution like the kind used for baby bottles.

MENSTRUAL-CUP BRAND RECOMMENDATIONS

For more information, visit the websites for leading menstrual cups like Diva Cup (divacup.com), Luna Cup (lunacups.com) and OrganiCup (organicup.com).

70 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018


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W

ELLNESS

EAT THIS, NOT THAT

DIGEST THIS!

Get the facts on the popular ketogenic and Whole30 diets. BY REBECCA L. BENNETT

KETO How does it work?

Eat this:

Not that:

The ketogenic diet calls for minimizing carb intake and maximizing fat intake to cause the body to enter a state of ketosis. Without carbs to burn for energy, the body begins processing fat into organic compounds called ketones and burning them instead.

3 organic chicken and eggs

3 soda and juice

3 grass-fed beef, wild-caught fish

3 sports drinks and flavored water

3 avocado oil, coconut oil and olive oil

3 sweeteners and condiments

3 flaxseeds and nuts (not cashews)

3 candy and desserts

3 yogurt, cheese, butter

3 cereal

Does it really work?

3 spinach, kale, chard

3 potatoes

Keto has been shown to be effective for shortterm weight loss since it encourages the body to burn fat as energy and shed water weight, and since it can reduce the dieter’s cravings for carbs. According to the Epilepsy Foundation, the ketogenic diet can reduce and even prevent seizures in children who haven’t responded to medications. However, results for regular dieters seeking long-term weight loss are as foggy as some new keto dieters feel as they struggle to acclimate to ketosis. Some health professionals even believe long-term keto dieters may actually damage their metabolism, stress the liver, hinder the body’s ability to build endurance and strength, and lose muscle tissue, among other issues.

3 broccoli, zucchini, cauliflower

3 bread, pasta, rice

3 water, tea

3 legumes

3 coffee (without sugar)

3 chips and other processed snacks

3 bone broth

3 beer

3 70 percent dark chocolate

3 fruit

3 alcohol without sugar

3 margarine

72 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018


WHOLE30 How does it work? The Whole30 diet is a 30-day nutrition-reset program designed to eliminate unhealthy cravings and eating habits, and heal and balance out the metabolism, digestive tract and immune system. The diet calls for cutting out “all the psychologically unhealthy, hormone-balancing, gutdisruption, inflammatory food groups” for a full month and being mindful of how your body feels during and after the diet. Does it really work? The Whole30 can benefit people who struggle with food sensitivities, but eliminating certain foods can come with physical and psychological risks. Experts suggest anyone interested in undertaking an elimination diet should work closely with an experienced registered dietitian nutritionist. Eat this:

Not that:

3 lean meats

3 real or artificial sugar

3 seafood

3 alcohol

3 eggs

3 grains

3 vegetables

3 most legumes

3 some fruit and juices

3 dairy

3 natural fats

3 carrageenan, MSG, sulfites

3 herbs, spices and seasonings

3 baked goods

3 ghee/clarified butter

3 junk foods, even “healthier” versions

3 vinegar (except malt vinegar)

“Any diet, whether it is low-carb, high-carb, low-fat, high-fat, highprotein and everything in between can cause short-term weight loss, but the research is very clear that 95 percent of those who lose weight on a diet will gain all the weight back and maybe more within two years,” says Kaylee Tremelling, a registered dietitian. As The Little Dietitian, Tremelling helps her clients forge positive relationships with food and embrace balanced eating habits as a lifestyle. She encourages clients to let go of their food “rules” and instead, learn to eat mindfully, listening to their hunger and fullness cues. “Instead of focusing on weight, I believe we should focus on overall health by focusing on healthy behaviors and good self-care,” she says. “These can include eating a balanced and nourishing diet, moving your body in an enjoyable way, drinking water, sleeping seven to nine hours a night, making time for activities that you enjoy, meditation and spending time with loved ones.”

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W

ELLNESS

HER ROUTINE

BUTTERFLY BABE

Dakota Luther is set to shine in her first year swimming for the University of Georgia. BY GRETCHEN M. SANDERS

She swam it at the Olympic trials in Omaha, Neb., in 2016. She did it again at the World Championship trials in Indianapolis a year later. Three weeks after that, having made the U.S. team, she powered through four lengths of swimming’s hardest stroke at the World Championships in Budapest, Hungary. She was one of only two American women who qualified for that race. Luther was 17 years old. “Getting to Worlds has been the highlight of my swimming career. I surpassed my own expectations,” says Luther, who finished 15th in Budapest and is coached by Olympic breaststroker Brendan Hansen at Austin Aquatics and Sports Academy. Luther was 4 when she started swimming. Today, her life centers on the sport. She gets up before dawn to practice and is back in the water when the sun sets. Her discipline pays off. Luther won six individual University Interscholastic League state-championship titles while swimming for Westlake High School. In her junior year, she broke a state record held by Olympic gold medalist and former world-record holder Dana Vollmer in the 100-meter butterfly, and was named Westlake’s Athlete of the Year. Hard work also earned Luther respect on USA Swimming’s national team this year, an honor that has her training alongside Olympic champions Katie Ledecky, Simone Manuel and Lilly King. It helps to have a good role model. Luther’s mother, Whitney Hedgepeth, competed in the 1988 and 1996 Summer Olympics, winning one gold and two silver medals in swimming. Though Luther dreams of making her first Olympic trip to Tokyo in 2020, she has more pressing goals. She will compete in the U.S. Nationals in Irvine, Calif., this July, a qualifying meet for the 2018 Pan Pacific Championships. “Even if I don’t make it, I have Georgia to look forward to,” she says. In August, Luther becomes a University of Georgia Bulldog. “I love competing, and I’m ready for the change that college swimming will bring,” she says. As the world awaits the chance to see her fly, here’s how this elite athlete keeps moving like a dolphin. 74 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018

THE A.M.:

“My alarm goes off at 4:55 a.m. I put on my swimsuit, drink cold-brew coffee, eat a banana and drive 15 minutes to the pool. Practice starts at 5:30 a.m.” THE WORKOUT:

“I swim six days a week. On three of those days, we workout for an hour and a half in the morning and for two hours in the evening. We swim up to 10,000 yards a day. I also do three dryland workouts with weights during the week, and I help my mom walk our three dogs. On Sundays, I rest. It adds up to about 20 to 25 hours of training each week. I’m usually pretty tired.” THE DIET:

“I make most of my own food. When I was 14, a blood test showed I was allergic to gluten, dairy, eggs, peanuts, corn and soy. I have avoided foods that contain these ingredients ever since, and it’s been very good for my training. I feel better and I’ve lost 10 pounds of water weight. Now I eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, sweet potatoes, turkey burgers and Kind bars. I like to drink a smoothie with protein powder and a banana when I get out of the pool. It’s hard to manage my hunger because I train so much.” THE GEAR:

“I have 20 to 30 swimsuits at home. I wear Arena and Speedo suits for training, and I have a collection of expensive suits for competition. Racing suits fit very tightly, feel thin as paper and cover the thighs almost to the knee. It takes 10 minutes to put one on. Swimmers also need their own pull buoys, paddles, fins, caps and goggles, which I have. For Olympic trials in 2016, we got kickboards with our names on them, and I love mine. I’m very superstitious, so I wear the same gold shoes to every swim meet. I also have a lucky green sweatshirt and lucky towels, and I paint my nails a certain way for the really big meets.” THE MOTIVATION:

“I love to swim. People think my mom pushes me, but she doesn’t. My mom has no idea what I do at practice. I’ve always wanted to be the best at something I do. My mom just supports me. I swim because I want to.” THE MINDSET:

“Dream big. I tell myself, ‘This is your race. Own it.’ ” THE P.M.:

“I used to sleepwalk, so I’m working on getting enough sleep. It takes me 30 minutes every night to pack my school bag, make a smoothie for after morning practice and pick out my clothes for the next day. I kiss my mom good night and get in bed by 10 p.m.”

Photo by Ella Wells.

Swimming 200 meters of butterfly hurts. Just ask Dakota Luther. The recent Westlake High School graduate tackles the grueling event in nearly every meet she enters.


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keep my energy levels up, and we drank gallons of water. My dad died when I was 3 years old. He’s in heaven now, At night, we stayed in tents and it was sometimes fun, but not and that’s a long way up from here, and there isn’t much always. Because it was cold and it rained or snowed the whole time you can do about that—except climb a mountain. If you we were on the mountain, we had a lot of water leaking into our climb a mountain so high that you reach above the clouds, tent at night, which got everything all wet. I still had to do schoolyou can get close to work every day, but that only got heaven and closer to my a little wet. dad. I have wanted very Finally, we got to the summit much to be closer to my and it was the best feeling ever. I dad for many years. didn’t really think about being the One day, I overheard my youngest girl to ever climb Mount mom telling my aunt that she Kilimanjaro or setting a world wanted to climb Mount Kilirecord, although that is cool. The manjaro, the highest mounbest thing about being on top of tain in Africa, and she wanted the mountain was that I was so people to join her. So, I asked, close to heaven, so close to my “Why not me? I want to climb dad. I didn’t want to leave. with you.” She didn’t say yes Now I’m back home and back right away because there’s to school and just being a regular a rule that says you must be kid. I like school. Math is my older than 10 to climb Mount favorite subject, and I like to Kilimanjaro, but she did what read. I love broccoli and the color she had to and got special blue, and I also like to watch TV. permission for me. My favorite shows are Bunk’d and I didn’t mind training for Dancing With the Stars. the climb. I like to run, swim, I’m thankful I had this opporhike and I do triathlons like tunity to climb Mount Kilimanmy mom, so I was already in jaro with my mom. shape when we started trainNow we’re using our experiing. What was different was ence to raise awareness and that we had to do lots of hikes money for a treatment of the with hills and stair training to condition that led to my dad’s train our muscles for climbing. death. Mom says eye-movementThen, in March, we got to desensitization-and-reprocessing Tanzania in Africa and to the therapy can really help people bottom of Mount Kilimanjaro. with post-traumatic stress disorIt wasn’t at all what I expected. der, but not everybody can afford I thought it would be really it. So, our first goal is to raise hilly, but this mountain isn’t $30,000 on GoFundMe to help like that, at least not at the botat least 10 families so they do not tom. I was kind of nervous but The best thing about being on top of have to go through the same thing also really excited. we did. If we can do that, Mom What surprised me was how the mountain was that I was so close says we will have done something many people were in our team really meaningful to honor Dad’s to heaven, so close to my dad. of guides and porters. There memory. That’s my new goal. were 25 people just to get my mom and I to the summit! It took us six and a half days to go up the Montannah Kenney is a second-grader at River Ridge Elementary mountain and just one and a half to come down. A lot of that time School. Those interested in donating to the Kenneys’ GoFundMe was spent eating, if you can believe that. Because I’m a kid and so page can visit gofundme.com/emdrawareness. lean, we had to stop every 15 minutes for me to eat something to

Austin Woman features a reader-submitted essay every month in the I Am Austin Woman column. To be considered for September’s I Am Austin Woman, email a 500-word submission on a topic of your choice by July 1 to submissions@awmediainc.com with the subject line “I Am Austin Woman.”

76 |  AUSTIN WOMAN |  JUNE 2018

Photo courtesy of Montannah Kenney.

In March, 7-year-old Montannah Kenney set out to honor her dad by climbing 19,341-foot-high Mount Kilimanjaro. She ended up setting a world record.


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AUSTIN WOMAN MAGAZINE |  JUNE 2018

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VOLVO CARS OF AUSTIN | NEW LOCATION: 7216 N. IH-35 • 866-974-6096 • VOLVOAUSTIN.COM VOLVO CARS OF GEORGETOWN | 7501 S IH-35 (EXIT 257) • 866-455-9829 • VOLVOGEORGETOWN.COM ©2018 Volvo Cars of North America, LLC. The Iron Mark is a registered trademark of Volvo.

“The road to success is always under construction.” —Lily Tomlin

A hook. A door bin. A waste basket. A wireless charging mat. A 9” Sensus Touchscreen. They all seem simple, but they’re just a few of the design, storage and technology details that went into building the new XC40. And they were all created to show your personality, store your everyday must-haves and streamline your busy lifestyle.

June 2018  

Austin Woman June 2018

June 2018  

Austin Woman June 2018