Age / Location / Passion
28 / Valley Center, CA / Hiking, volunteering at Joshua Tree National Park + most recently bouldering.
Also stoked about?
Performance art, dance, and yoga
Favorite place to get outside?
Joshua Tree National Park is literally my second home.
Go to gear?
What’s your story?
I grew up in a very small town in Veracruz, Mexico. My father is a hunter-turned-environmentalist, and animal rescuer. Growing up, my entire family often went on adventure trips around the country. A regular day-trip or vacation was anywhere from archaeological site visits to fishing trips, animal-rescue expeditions to animal park visits.
When I was in high school, I began exploring my artistic side through screen + live performance and because I grew up spending so much time outside in nature, I wanted to live in a big city and moved to Mexico City right after graduating to study Theater and Image Consulting. Hopping around to LA, back to Mexico City and finally wound up in Buffalo, NY before heading to NYC to finish my Masters in Performance Studies.
After a few years in NYC doing activist performance art, I moved to California to manage a swimwear brand and conscious boutique, and I started craving to be outside, connecting with nature and be as far removed from concrete distractions as possible. Slowly, I’ve been managing to incorporate the outdoors in my everyday day life through volunteering at Joshua Tree National Park, exploring the natural beauty of San Diego County with friends and collaborating with Stranded on Land and its conscious brand partners. The ongoing goal is to spend as much time outside as possible.
What’s something coming up this year that you’re stoked about?
My boy and I just moved out of our apartment and into our tent, posting up at a farm where we work in exchange for stay. I got rid of about 80% of my belongings, it was massive but worth it. We are in the process of saving up cash, starting our own little biz, and “pimping” our truck so that we can hit the road life! We call ourselves The Adventure Team 🙂
Who inspires you?
This is actually a difficult question for me. I’m truly inspired in many different ways by my closest circle of friends; and so much that I couldn’t just put one of them in the spotlight to answer this. But I can tell you why, the people that I keep the closest to me have beliefs that match their ways of being in the world. They all have a lesson for me that I get to be reminded of regularly. They help me and others around them grow, they are all teachers.
Why local fashion + businesses?
I can’t see it any other way. In the bigger picture of the world, our impact starts with our neighbors. We as a culture of conscious consumers have a lot of work to do and it can easily become overshadowed in the sea of unjust production chains, mindless products and consumerism. Starting with supporting local really helps us learn, strategize, and develop a stronger understanding of the bigger picture while being aware and directly connected to the impact of our choices.
What is one experience that you’ve had that has dramatically changed your life?
Looking at my student loans balance after graduating. The terror that I felt when I saw these numbers wasn’t even for myself, it was because it clicked in my head that we had all been fooled to enslave into living our lives to repay these debts rather than enjoy and pursue our passions. For the next 2 years I dedicated myself as entirely as possible (juggling up to 7 jobs at a time) to The Grace Period Blog, a platform my partner Sydney Arndt + I created to fight the student debt crisis through art and activism while encouraging people to pursue their passions despite the burdens of their debts. The project is currently on hold, but we are both living its principles and hopefully leading by example.
Why is what you’re doing by working with local businesses, retailers and designers important?
When I encounter people who are not yet privileged enough to be conscious, I have a duty to offer them that privilege. When I encounter conscious people, I have the urge to tell the world about it. Now more than ever, it is necessary to scream out loud that businesses, no matter the industry, needs to be ethical. We have the information and proof of the palpable damages that happen when we play a blind eye both as makers or consumers. I’ve said this before: Consumerism without consciousness is no longer acceptable.
It’s way overdue for the world to catch up with the fact that values are important and they must the core of everything we do. Haven’t we wasted enough resources, exploited enough people? Our culture of unhappy consumers who can never have enough is what supports the vicious cycle of waste and exploitation. The irony is terrifying, we waste and exploit just to keep everyone who can consume unhappy and dissatisfied.
When you’re not traveling, exploring +finding the next best brands, what are you up to?
I’m designing websites, consulting with someone on their business, dancing, or teaching yoga.
As a woman balancing fashion, consumerism + space in the outdoor industry, what’s something that you think is really important?
To identify how challenging it actually is to try to embody and balance all those things. It is not only a matter of mindfulness. There are constant inner and outer battles involved. For example, paying the bills is real and balancing between when to absolutely prioritize that verses my personal wants and conscious consumption goals can be heartbreaking at times. The world functions in a way that propels you to go out of control about having, buying + wanting things, especially when it comes to fashion. Through the perspective of a recovered survivor, I try to challenge that function and lead by example. Less is more.
How do you balance work, travel and play? What advice would you give to someone who wants to follow their passion?
Finding balance is the ever-going exercise. What has worked for me the best has been to not compromise my personal well-being for anything. I need my mind to be clear, my food, my water, and my physical exercise in order to be able to work. I have been truly prioritizing that. The result is: I work better. While obviously, things happen every and once in a while and there is a failure, this has proven to be true in the successful scheme of things.
3 pieces of advice: 1. Do what you need to do for you before what you need to do for someone else. 2. Get rid of all the things you don’t use and make some room for just your being. 3. Take advantage of your failures, they are your best assets.
One Instagram account that you’re crazy about?
@wandering.dawn This is a friend who I met in dance class just a few months before she quit her job to go on a one-year journey throughout South America. Her journey has been truly inspiring (and colorful).
Go to local grab + go bites?
There are so many. But in Leucadia, I will go with Juanitas, because they open late and they have tortas de milanesa on the menu. When in Solana Beach, Tidewater Tavern is my absolute favorite because they have the best fish tacos, house-made potato chips, and the best happy hour.
Thanks for sharing your story with us. Keep exploring + inspiring.
Stranded on Land