During this stressful and surreal time, we are committed to finding ways to connect through the power of our personal stories and shared experiences. Although LTYM Boulder has been rescheduled for August 29th, we are thrilled to bring you a livestream of Socially Distant Mother Boulder on Saturday, May 2nd at 7:00 pm!
You can purchase a discounted $10 ticket to join us in this virtual celebration of storytelling and motherhood here.
It is our great pleasure to introduce the cast of
Socially Distant Mother Boulder!
Rawa Abu Alsamah
Originally from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Rawa seeks out the adventurous side of life any way she can. Always one to stay busy, teaching, dealing with 2 kids, and getting a new Dachshund puppy still aren’t enough for her. In lieu of being her extremely social self, Rawa has turned an eye to gardening and yard work, in preparation for a social summer. She has big plans outside of the house as well. While one to often get out and explore, this year Rawa bought a kayak and a puppy sized life vest. The dangerous duo are looking forward to getting out on the Boulder Reservoir and basking in the sun.
Chris lives in Boulder, with her husband, two sons (17 & 20), a bonus daughter (22), two cats and three dogs. She loves books and words and still can’t believe there’s a place called a library that gives her free books. Born into a southern family rich with stories, she’s spent her life asking to be told the same yarns again and again. Chris started writing journals as a child, then turned to personal essay and memoir to tell her own stories and preserve the family tales she loves. Through her business, Writing Unleashed (www.Writing.Unleashed.net), Chris facilitates writing circles. She believes sharing our stories is healing for ourselves and the world, a practice that brings us together and allows us to feel less strange and alone.
Rohini Grace lives with her daughter and husband in Boulder, CO. Adopted in India at birth, Rohini grew up spanning the continents of India, Australia, and the United States. She’s the owner of Goddess Travels, a company that specializes in women’s tours to India. When Rohini is not busy organizing and leading trips to India she’s working on her first book. Between chasing her tiny tornado of a daughter, 4-year-old Grace, Rohini enjoys hiking, biking, yoga, and adventures with her family. Motherhood has been the most beautiful and challenging journey of her life, and she’s grateful for her own rebirth through being a parent. Her website is: goddesstravels.com
I am co-founder of The Institute for Unlearning – we operate in the Future of Work space, involving change management, leadership development, and culture strategy. Our team facilitates transformation in company cultures through experiential practices, and executive coaching. I’m currently writing a book on Continuous Renewal Economics. After work, I am an actress and director in Denver’s vibrant theatre scene. I’m beginning a project with Vintage Theatre, assistant directing Shakespeare in Love (opens April 17th). I have three wee dogs, rescues from breeder mills, and I’m not positive about who is doing the rescuing. I grew up in Africa, and the Pacific Rim, and went back Africa for three years in 2011 to build brands for Tanzanian companies. On my return, I had the distinct privilege of reading for LTYM-Boulder 2015, and am honored to be reading with these tremendous writers today.
Shana Kelly started her career as a literary agent at the William Morris Agency, first in New York and then London. These days, Shana works as a freelance editor and teaches at Lighthouse Writers Workshop in Denver. Shana wrote a documentary about the Peace Corps which premiered at the Kennedy Center in 2019, and she is currently writing a documentary about the League of Women Voters. Shana is the proud mom of an incredibly strong and resourceful sixth grader.
Melissa Holland Mansika
Melissa supports people through career and life transitions, teaches positive psychology and career counseling and is the tired, happy mother of one delightful soon-to-be-seven-year old boy. Melissa is enjoying her own life transition and is training in self-regulation and emotional regulation, to start supporting parents through the challenges of parenting and an aspiring podcast host along with her twin sister. When she’s not learning or teaching, two of her favorite things, she’s attempting intermittent fasting, trying the new behavior design approach of Tiny Habits, losing things and trying to find them, reading, drinking coffee, and laughing with her boys (her seven-year old and the older one she’s married to).
McCracken is a freelance writer, athletic coach, and massage therapist. A few of the places her writing has appeared in include the New York Times, Washington Post, Runner’s World, Elle, Huffington Post, Women’s Running, Glamour, Outside, and Boulder Magazine. She is currently working on a book. McCracken recently married David Butler and they are expecting their first child in August. She is honored to return to the LTYM stage for a second season. McCracken grew up in Cincinnati but has lived in Boulder for over 16 years. With her spare time she enjoys traveling the world visiting friends, running trails, and swimming in open water. You can read more about her at http://www.amandajmccracken.com or follow her on Instagram @amandajmccracken
A former restaurant owner and an Indian vegetarian food cooking teacher, Jessica Shah moved to Boulder from India over thirty years ago. She lives the cultures of her two homes daily especially as a parent and a writer; and her immigrant experience inspires her writing. Jessica is a mother of two daughters, ages 20 and 16; and lives with her husband in Erie. She writes poetry, personal essays and memoir; and loves stories and storytelling. She has self-published a book of poetry, Coming Home, is working on the next one, Leaving and has helped her eighty-four year mother publish her memoir of short essays in her native language. She is passionate about social issues that include trafficking and food justice; and is on the Board of Boulder Food Rescue, a non-profit. She loves fitness, the outdoors, spending time with family and traveling. Visit her website here.
Trinity holds a B.M. in Musical Theatre and a Masters in Secondary Education. She is the founder of Arkitekt, a not-for-profit focused on empowering women through embodiment, transformation, and activism. She works as a healing guide using Safe and Sound Protocol, Soul-Directed Healing, and SourcePoint Therapy. She is a voice coach for the soul, an embodier, a keeper of the fire, and a third-way maker. Trinity is passionate about helping the humans feel our feelings, tell the truth, and awaken to our belovedness. She practices this through radical acts like partnering the same person for 15 years, parenting four children, living communally, and bringing herself into the light over and over again with deep tenderness instead of shame. She writes about how sickness, loss, and suffering teach us how to live at www.trinitywilbourn.com, where you can also find more information about her healing work. Follow her on Instagram at @trinitywilbourn
Kim Wright is the very lucky mother to three beautiful teenagers (19, 17 and 13), two dogs, and the world’s most handsome cat. Kim and her husband Eric live with their family in a very well loved home in Boulder. Her passion is working with children and creating space for them to feel safe and loved and helping them grow this feeling within themselves. She works as a mental health advocate in the elementary schools in Boulder Valley School District bringing a trauma-informed lens and an understanding of its impact on learning to public education. She also has a private therapy practice working with adolescents and young adults where she uses EMDR and Mindful Self-Compassion to support her clients in living their best lives. Kim is a longtime marathon runner. Writing and a lifetime love of poetry and memoir are private engagements that she is making public for the first time at LTYM.
Jenn is a mother, sister, spouse, writer, artist, and HR professional. She loves helping people tell their stories and occasionally musters enough courage to tell her own. Jenn has been a featured speaker on the startup ecosystem, the high-tech job economy, and millennials in the workforce, at events such as Boulder Startup Week, Denver Startup Week, Chicago Ideas Week, and Glappitnova. Originally from New York City, Jenn now lives adjacent to Boulder County Open Space with her husband and two firecracker children, where they are neighbors to an owl family and a whole lot of deer.
Socially Distant Mother Boulder Production Team:
Stephanie Sprenger, Executive Producer
Stephanie Sprenger is a writer, producer, music therapist, and mother of two daughters. Her work has been published in O Magazine, The Washington Post’s On Parenting, Brain, Child Magazine, Cosmopolitan.com, Redbook.com, the Huffington Post, and Scary Mommy, among other places, and she (infrequently) blogs about the imperfect reality of motherhood at Mommy, for Real. She is also co-editor of The HerStories Project, a writing and publishing community for women at midlife. Stephanie lives for sunny weekends and Disney vacations, and in between those moments, she fuels herself with coffee, yoga, kickboxing, hot toddies, and snuggles from her eight- and thirteen-year-old daughters.
Megan Vos, Producer
Megan Vos was a 2018 LTYM Boulder cast member, and joined the production team in 2019. A New Hampshire native, Megan has lived in Boulder for fifteen years. She taught in Denver Public Schools before leaving the classroom to stay home with her first daughter nine years ago. When she’s not writing during the pre-dawn hours, you can find Megan skiing with her family, listening to Harry Potter audio books with her eight year old, and justifying yet another trip to Starbucks with her five year-old. Megan shares her writing at familygrowsup.com, and her work has been published in Motherscope magazine.
Jessey Smithwick, Creative Consultant + Emcee
Jessey Smithwick started her Listen To Your Mother love affair as an awestruck audience member and is thrilled to be a part of the 2020 production team. She is originally from Nebraska but is happy to call Colorado her home and has recently embraced the idea of attaching “I Love CO” bumper stickers to her car. After 20 years in the nonprofit sector, Jessey realized her dream of starting her own business as a Wellness Coach and Holistic Health Practitioner. You can find her at The Wellbeing Path where she works passionately with her clients but only sporadically on things like marketing, social media, and budget-balancing. Jessey is the proud mom of an amazing son, Ryan, as well as the bonus mom to a few other wonderful souls. She has been a professional bellydancer for the past umpteen years, teaching in the Denver metro area, traveling to various parts of the country to perform, and co-producing shows wherever she can. Though fueled with great love, Jessey’s attempts at regular self-care, downtime, and being a wife are humorous and mediocre at best.
Ellen Nordberg, Creative Consultant
Ellen Nordberg’s stories have appeared in The L.A. Times, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, The Denver Post, The Huffington Post, Yahoo, Parade, and 5280. She’s a creative consultant to the Listen To Your Mother show, and has been a featured storyteller in the “Truth Be Told” Story Slam. “Stories on Stage” has performed her stories, and she holds a Colorado Author’s League Award “Best Essay” award.
And a huge thanks to our incredible LTYM Boulder local sponsors: Sage Birth and Wellness Center, Sassafras Photography,Birth Center of Boulder, J Lounge, Catherine Davis Allstate Agent, Shredder Urban Ski and Snowboard School,Jacque Michelle Gift and Fashion Boutique, Krimson Klover Women’s Apparel,FLOW Writers’ Workshop, Yo Colorado, Boulder Blooms, Pompadours Hair Salon, Dova Center for Health and Healing, and Ladder Creative Graphic Design for Print and Web.
In the coming weeks, we will share information on the services our local sponsors are currently providing during quarantine, and how you can continue to support them during this unprecedented and disruptive time for business owners.
Are you a local business owner interested in becoming a Socially Distant Mother/LTYM Boulder Sponsor? Contact us at ltymboulder @ gmail.com.
We can’t wait to virtually connect with you on May 2nd for Socially Distant Mother Boulder!
Stephanie, Megan, & Jessey