I’m a Chicago-based writer of creative and UX copy for a large health and wellness retailer. My storytelling background is hybrid: I've worked as a magazine editor, have an MFA in creative writing, and my writing has been anthologized in publications including Chicago: Rust Belt Anthology. My work has also appeared in The Chicago Reader, Time Out Chicago, The Dodo, and Orbitz.
I’m both compelled by and skeptical of wellness culture including yoga, breathwork, herbalism, ancestral healing, and aromatherapy. (I was meditating long before it was cool.) You can find me Tweeting about feminism and literature and Instagramming about my dog and baked goods.
I’m a mom, wife, lawyer, and writer partial to mission-based companies, scrappy startups, and social justice warriors. I began my career as a young, idealistic attorney with a deep love of research and writing. I spent time practicing in both the public and private sectors, handling every subject imaginable, from divorce and custody to administrative agency review cases.
Eventually, my love of New York and all things handmade led me to Etsy, a platform that supports makers and micro-entrepreneurs. At Etsy, I spent nearly six years writing and advising on content moderation policy, government relations, and corporate social responsibility initiatives. Most recently, I moved my family back to Chicago, where I continue to work in the e-commerce space, focusing on policy around user-generated content.
I'm an Assistant Professor of Biology at Oakton Community College, where I focus on the needs of first-generation, low-income, underrepresented, non-native students and students with disabilities, among others. I am a first-generation student from a low-income background, and earned my Ph.D. In Molecular Genetics and Cell Biology at the University of Chicago in 2009. After receiving my degree, I declined a post-doc at Harvard because I would not have been able to focus on expanding opportunities for others in STEM fields. I’ve found that taking an unchartered path can yield wonderful results.
These days, when I'm not spending time with my husband, my sweet beagle named Bagels, family and friends, I’m building my marijuana-focused site, Plants to Pipes. Originally from the great city of Dayton, Ohio, I now live in North Avondale in Chicago.
I’m a marketing professional who’s spent 20 years helping startups acquire and retain customers. I’ve been involved in all stages of startups, from conception to acquisition.
I understand when to press on the accelerator marketing-wise, how to construct the ideal in-house marketing team, and how to operationalize marketing alongside product and sales organizations for the fullest combined effect.
I also work as the CMO at Papers + Ink Studio. Before that, I held several head of marketing positions where I helped companies lay the foundation for marketing and launched their web and mobile applications. My work includes helping teams define their mission, vision, brand attributes, messaging and core values as well as creating and executing social media, content, email, paid placements and other customer marketing activities.
Read more about Candice in our essay, Black Lives Matter, biracial identity, and the feeling of jeopardy that comes with systemic change.
Candice also shares her career story here in No more faking the funk: Our cofounder turns her back on Silicon Valley culture.
I’m a writer and parent of twins who’s navigating the ups and downs of midlife and perimenopause. I live in the Chicago burbs with my husband (Martin Cuevas, a social worker) and our daughters Lydia and Isabel. I've previously worked or written for Etsy, Minted, HarperCollins, Abstract, West Elm, NYLON, and Pitchfork.
I’ve been to Venus and back
I started my first business, Venus Zine, about women in music and DIY culture, as a freshman at Michigan State University. Thanks to the big hearts of hundreds of talented creative people, I scaled Venus bootstrap-style, from a fanzine into an internationally distributed magazine. After a decade of running the show, I sold my company to an independent publisher, and moved from Chicago to New York to start a new chapter.
Amy Cuevas Schroeder
Finding my Jumble & Flow
I began developing what it means to live a Jumble & Flow life about three years after having twin girls, moving from Brooklyn to the Chicago area to be near family, while holding down a full-time job and putting my husband through college. During that time, our daughter Isabel was diagnosed with Pitt Hopkins, a rare genetic syndrome that causes inability to walk and talk among many other symptoms.
To deal with the complexities of daily life, including undiagnosed perimenopause and navigating what it means to be “in my prime” at the same time, I started learning coping strategies, ranging from mindfulness and therapy to transcendental meditation and minimalism. I also created the Adventures in Perimenopause series to get to the bottom of this misunderstood state that millions of women face.
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Visit my site: bonniebroeren.com
Founder & Head of Content
When I was 12 years old, I saved up my allowances and bought myself The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson. I've fancied myself a writer ever since. These days, I mostly write for the internet: content designer for a grocery retailer by day, and managing editor at Jumble & Flow by night.
If I'm not writing, I'm reading. Probably romance. Or, a cookbook. I spend most weeknights in the kitchen making gluten free ginger scones — because Hashimoto's — while watching the Great British Baking Show. I never miss my two daily walks in Austin, Texas, with my husband and two rescue dogs, Basil and Samantha.
Hannah Shadrick Hummel
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Crushing on: Journalist-activist Jemele Hill because she's fearless. We worked together at our Michigan State University paper and I’ve enjoyed watching her navigate her career with boldness.
Now that I'm in my 40s, I wholeheartedly believe: I’m in my prime — that what I do now will pay off in my decades ahead. In so many ways, I feel like I’m just getting started with coming into my own. I’m on a mission to redefine, reinvent, and disrupt what midlife means, and I’ll be damned if anyone stops me.
Crushing on: Madonna, because I need to see models of women changing their minds and loving themselves more for it.
Now that I'm in my 30s: I wholeheartedly believe in forgiveness. I didn't say I was good at it! But, I do believe expanding your heart to include forgiveness is good for you.
40 is the new 30
After I turned 30 (I'm 31 now), I started feeling like I had something to say. I mean, I'm a certified Pelvic Floor Yoga™ instructor, as well as a certified Personal Finance Nerd™. I'm from the rural South and I make my living as a UX writer. Surely, I have something interesting to say out of all these sides of me?
Amy and I worked together previously at a start-up and I'd always admired her professionalism and true-to-herselfness. Shortly after we both left the company, I reached out and asked if I could write about my pelvic floor, and Amy promptly replied, "Absolutely." It's been peaches ever since.
Life-changing jumble: Meeting my now-husband. I was engaged when we met, which made things inconvenient. I disappointed people. I grieved my ex while falling in love with him. And, ultimately, I grew up in the process of becoming his wife.
You'll never find me without: my Great Pyrenees and German Shepherd daughters.
You'll never find me without: black clothing and coffee with stevia and almond milk.
Life-changing jumble: I've had a number of jumbles — life's so full of them. So I'm having a hard time picking one. There are moments that bring us highs and lows and give us a sense of purpose and drive. Each moment is interwoven with the past and the future. It isn’t one jumble — it's the series of successes and challenges that make me who I am.
Now that I'm in my 40s, I wholeheartedly believe in: love....but, I don't go around saying that I “believe” in things. I either know things and accept that fact that there are things that I don't know. I know that we must love ourselves and others. I know that faith will get you by, in the literal sense of knowing that things won’t be the same. I don’t believe in anything. This could be semantics.
You'll never find me without: a packet of turmeric-ginger tea, Aveda’s essential-oil “stress-fix” perfume roller, mints, hand lotion, gauzy scarf in case of a chill, and a packet of dog treats. And, if I’m being honest, my dog, Cody.
Now that I'm in my 40s, I wholeheartedly believe in: radical transparency and vulnerability (with the right people), and my own intuition, which never leads me astray. I believe that you can give more freely to others once you learn to practice healthy boundaries. I’m also happy to report that the cliche about how you stop caring about what other people think of you the older you get is true! I can’t believe how much time I wasted in my youth being crippled by self-consciousness and worrying about what others thought of me. Letting go of that is the best part of aging, by far.
Crushing on: Michelle Obama. Whenever I'm stressed out, misunderstood, or unsure of myself, I read something she wrote or watch clips of interviews she's given about impostor syndrome, and it gives me the courage to face my fears. Most notably, her “secret” that she has sat at some of the most powerful tables in the world, and “they’re not that smart” always makes me smile and reminds me that no matter how impressive or intimidating someone is, they're still just as human as I am.
Life-changing jumble: Leaving the traditional practice of law. In 2012, I took a chance on a little known company at the time (Etsy) in a role no one had heard of before (Trust & Safety Policy) in a city I had only visited a couple of times (New York). Lawyers are generally not early adopters or risk takers, but I am, and I needed to create space for myself to still be true to who I was within my chosen profession. I took a huge risk, and there were times when I was not sure how it would pan out. I worried that I had ruined my career. Nearly 10 years later, I could not be happier with the direction my career has gone, the amazing people I have met, and the opportunities I have had. I am grateful that I trusted myself enough to take a chance on something in which most other people did not yet see potential.
Now that I'm in my 40s, I wholeheartedly believe: that you are never too old to start something new, learn something new, or pivot in your life. When I decided to pivot in my career, I worried that at 34 I was “too old,” and now that seems silly to me. I am still constantly learning new skills and new subjects, and now think of myself as a constant work in progress rather than a person trying to achieve some state of perfection.
Rev. Bonnie Ho
I'm a spiritual counselor, energy & tarot reader, and author of the Living in the Third Eye column for Jumble & Flow. After spending most of my adult life trying to prove my worth through an analytical career, I found a spiritual path that led me back to myself and my own heart. Now, I help others heal their wounds, find their joy, and embrace their intuition and true desires, in a grounded, balanced way. I'm available for spiritual guidance and energy readings — visit bonniehoinsights.com to learn more.
Crushing on: Lady Gaga. Her type of music isn’t my go-to, but I appreciate her humanitarianism, authenticity, and vulnerability — especially in her speaking out about her mental health challenges. In these volatile times, we need someone with a big voice to stand up and show her pain, so that the world can know that they’re not alone. I love that she's been so revealing about her inner battles with her celebrity status, which just shows: We all have jumbles, no matter how things may look from the outside.
Life-changing jumble: In my late 20s, I was in a toxic, on-and-off emotionally abusive relationship. This one jumble has brought me many invaluable lessons. First, it allowed me to know my own power by standing my ground to leave it, amidst my fear. As I healed, I began to see how the relationship was also showing me hidden emotions, beliefs and strategies that do not serve me. Seeing this allowed me to take ownership for my contribution in the toxicity of the relationship. By owning my whole self, even the unsavory parts, I came to fully love myself and learn the meaning of forgiveness and acceptance. All of this wouldn’t have happened if I didn’t have this terrible experience.
Let's connect on Instagram: @the.divinefeminist
Now that I'm in my 40s, I wholeheartedly believe: in leading my life from my heart. Up until a few years ago, I was living from my head, and I couldn’t understand why I wasn’t happy! Now I know that we can’t find joy from our heads, because joy is a feeling! When I follow my joy, it feels so good that even when others judge me, I just keep on, keepin’ on. If this is wrong, I don’t want to be right!
Let's connect on Instagram: @dixielaite
I've been a second-grade teacher and mechanical bull operator, and for the past 25 years I've worked for a variety of TV networks as a writer, editorial director, trainer, advice columnist, even an on-air personality. But primarily I've trotted around New York City in one cowboy shirt or another, lurking around flea markets, gyms, and anywhere they’ll hand her French toast.
I'm currently lounging around my apartment with one husband, one dog, five parrots, and roughly 2,000 pairs of shoes.
Crushing on: Wanda Sykes because she's just so funny and smart, and her skin is such a gorgeous caramel color. It would be a struggle not to dry-hump her leg. But I also have major girl crushes on dozens of yesteryear dames for their courage, humor, and glamour — too many to name. (That's why I started Dametown.com!)
Life-changing jumble: Learning that I’ve been my own worst enemy all along, not my various jumbles.
Now that I'm in my 50s, I wholeheartedly believe in: 1) tenacity, 2) kindness, and 3) not caring about what idiots think about you.
You'll never find me without: I would have said lipstick before March 2020. But now I can actually be without it without hyperventilating.