Motherhood doesn’t leave a whole lot of room for ‘me-time’, and I have found that unless I intentionally carve out that time for myself to recharge, no one else is going to step in and say, ‘hey, you seem like you could really use a break.’ As caretakers, we moms really do need to advocate for our own self-care and social needs, and I am really excited to share about how some of my mama friends and I are doing just that.
It all started with my friend Hope, who had the pipe-dream of gathering regularly to do something fun. She threw out the ideas of jewelry-making and bowling, (complete with custom-made fly suits and bowling nicknames). She had me at fly-suits. Se also had 15+ other mamas, at which point our unofficial bowling league was born via group text messaging. The nickname suggestions and team name ideas began flying. Honestly, I wasn’t even sure this would really come to fruition, because let’s be honest, orchestrating that many mamas to show up on the same day at the same time is no small feat. I was having plenty of fun coming up with names, (writer-life, yo), but when the ball really started rolling, (insert bowling pun), I started to really see the vision.
I have to give pause here to introduce you to Amy Yeung, badass fashion designer, Navajo tribe activist and owner of Orenda Tribe. First we fell in love with her edgy, coverall jumpsuits. Then we fell in love with Her. You ever meet someone and their energy instantly puts you at comfort and ease, and you know if you ever needed to you could just sob like a baby on their shoulder? That’s Amy. Maternal AF, beautiful artist and helper of her people. We showed up at her Santa Ana studio with our crazy toddlers in tow, and she didn’t bat an eyelash. She welcomed us and our chaos in to her home, and let us ravage alllll the jumpsuits. For me the most impactful part of my experience was learning about Amy’s mission.
After a career of designing fast fashion clothing destined for landfills, I arrived at a place of creating with consciousness. I have long believed in sustainable design processes—handmade, restored and repurposed vintage, one-of-a-kind upcycling of textiles. Orenda Tribe is built on these tenets and fueled by my desire to honor my indigenous history, to protect our sacred lands, and a drive to help others. As the Orenda Tribe team and I travel the world collecting beautiful treasures, I invite you to journey with us and be a part our experiments in fashion made in a more soulful way.
Once our fly suits were complete with embroidered nicknames, (I went with ‘Mac’), we picked a date and a time to bowl, and miraculously all but 3 of us were able to be there. The cherry on top was Amy showing up to hand-deliver our beautiful ‘uniforms’ to us, despite her having the flu. If that isn’t commitment, I don’t know what is. It was pretty magical, you guys. I kind of forgot that bowling is really fun. Everyone was in such good spirits and feeling super-fly in our superfly-jumpsuits. I gotta thank Saddleback Lanes in Mission Viejo, Ca for allowing us to have our massive dance-party, mama gathering there; I hope you’re ready to see us weekly. I also want to shout out Alina Mendoza for capturing some of the epic-ness via her photography. I hope this will inspire some of you to start your own unofficial (or official) mama bowling leagues.
Orenda Tribe: Inside all of us is the power to make change.