So excited to start our interview series "She's Still Got It" where we interview inspiring mamas from all walks of life. These interviews are meant to inspire and share mama secrets to help each other.
I am thrilled to have Natazha McDuffie as our first interviewee. What really drew me to Natasha is the adventerous lifestyle she has created with her family (check out their ig @zplusn). I know you are going to love reading more about this sweet soul.
Tell us a little about yourself and Soulucean…
I am born and raised in Southern California. I have been modeling for most of my life and just recently started a brand called Soulucean soulucean.com (the name Soulucean is a combination of the words Soul and Ocean, and it is pronounced like "solution"). Our first product is a travel clutch with a waterproof liner and water resistant zipper that is great for keeping your stuff dry the beach or poolside, but still beautiful enough to take for a night out on the town. We donate a portion of the proceeds of each sale to help beach and ocean clean up charities.
What has been the biggest surprise about becoming a mom?
Everything about becoming a mom has been a surprise to me! I am an only child and hadn't spent very much time with babies so I really had no idea what to expect. From the beginning I've been surprised at how empowering and selfless motherhood is, but also how exhausted you can get! It makes you dig deep to look for the best version of yourself to try and create a great life for your family... even when you are completely exhausted!
What makes you feel the most beautiful?
I feel the most beautiful through my husband's eyes. This photo (that he took) embodies a moment when I felt beautiful- I have salt and sand in my hair, I have been in the sun all day, swimming in the sea, and am sharing a gorgeous sunset with the loves of my life. I want to sink into that moment forever!
How have you maintained your amazing body after your babe? Any tips for other mamas?
Haha! Thank you! It wasn't easy losing the baby weight and getting back into shape. Trying to find the time and energy to work out is tough when you are adapting to the constant daily changes that babies bring to your life, but I think being happy and feeling good about yourself start with living healthy. Eating healthy and breastfeeding came first, then making time to do some yoga, Pilates, or go to the gym came next. The best advice I can give is to make living healthy a high priority because it gives your mind and spirit some of the energy you desperately need as a mom.
What does a typical meal for you and your little one look like?
We do our best to eat healthy well balanced meals and we are lucky that Taya LOVES to eat! Some of her favorites are fruit smoothies, açai bowls, gluten free banana pancakes, and avocados. We are lucky that she eats just about anything we put in front of her. She's being raised as a true Southern California girl though, which means lots of healthy fruits, veggies, and seafood but also a healthy appreciation for Mexican food and the occasional guilty pleasure of In-n-Out burger and fries!
What is something you do for yourself that makes you a better mom?
Getting outside, working out, excercising. Whether it's a yoga class, a pilates class, a jog at the beach, or a jump in the ocean, it feels good to sweat and clear my mind... and feel good about myself which makes me a better mama.
Tell us how you have created this adventurous lifestyle with your family?
Before we met my husband and I were very independent people that led adventurous lives. We made a conscious choice to maintain that spirit as a family. Finding yourself and your place in the world requires a certain amount of adventure and exploration, and then you meet someone that makes you realize all of that (and even yourself) is better when shared. When you get passed the logistical challenges of family adventures you realize there's no view or experience sweeter than the one you share with your favorites and no crew you would rather explore with.
Who inspires you?
My biggest inspiration is Taya. She makes me thrive to be the best version of myself daily.
What do you hope your daughter will learn from you?
I hope she learns to be a strong and independent woman. I hope she has a love for travel and adventure. I hope she has a profound respect for herself, the world, and others. I hope she learns to laugh at herself, I know I do all the time!
Thank you so much for including me.