Meet The St. Louis Mom Team!
Brittany is a proud mamaprenuer & socialite who teaches magical marketing strategies to busy mamapreneurs, who need to stand out in crowded marketplaces & scale with automations. She’s a third generation entrepreneur. She has one daughter, Amara, 2 (which means grace in Igbo) and married her best friend, David, almost 4 years ago. They are a 100% self-employed family, juggling businesses, a baby, and everything! They reside in North County. Fun fact: Brittany has lived in every time zone in the country. She likes to use the hashtag #ThatMarketingMama!
Katy is on a mission to squash every fitness and nutrition myth out there! As a certified nutrition coach and personal trainer, she believes in the power of fueling your body to thrive in the busyness of motherhood.
Katy is a St. Louis native and a former Kindergarten teacher. Her love of fitness and nutrition runs deep – she has been in the fitness industry as an athlete for 10+ years and has owned a women’s only fitness business since 2018. As a busy mom of two littles (ages 4 & 6), she understands the struggle to find balance in life: workouts, nutrition, motherhood, relationships, social connections, and inner peace.
“Let’s face it, results come from actions, not intentions. And I LOVE helping women find balance in this.” REAL change with nutrition and fitness happens when you ditch the all-or-nothing mindset.
A great week for her would include: an early morning workout, a steaming hot shower, dark chocolate sea salt caramels, kisses & snuggles from her littles, a good burger, being outside, doing aerial silks, day dates with her husband, lifting weights, hiking, lazy evenings in front of the TV.
Connect with Katy via Instagram : @strong.as.a.mother.stl
Maria Goncalves, Senior Contributing Writer
Maria Ines Goncalves is yet another Portuguese mom named Maria (like most of the women in Portugal), but now she is a Portuguese mom in the USA. Born in Portugal, Maria graduated with a degree in Political Science and believed she was not ready for motherhood, wanting to pursue her career and travel the world, although not wanting to live overseas. Guess what? She turned into a stay-at-home-mom of three (2007, 2010 and 2018) and moved to St. Louis due to her husband’s job in 2017. Changes are a pattern in her life and, when she’s not adjusting to another life change, she loves to dance, bake, photograph, sew, draw and paint with the kids. But mainly she loves to enjoy the beauty and craziness of motherhood, her real and most precious purpose in life.
Rita Gordon is a mom, first and foremost, to two beautiful children, a boy (4) and girl (6), who are equal parts affectionate and headstrong. She is also a mom who is transitioning from being married to co-parenting with her childrens’ father. In her journey as a single mom, she has learned how to be intentional with the quality of time spent with her children, rather than focusing on the quantity of time. She hopes to remind women that they’re not alone, and that all women can do hard things, while continuously working on becoming their best selves.
Rita is Ukrainian-born and proud, and grew up in Saint Louis. She works as an Early Intervention School Psychologist, and is passionate about advocating for students and being a voice for educational reform. When she’s not juggling her kids schedules, you can find her cheering for the STL Blues, keeping herself busy at Trader Joes taste-testing all the newest releases, spending an overwhelming amount of time on adventures with her furry bestie (her dog Fitzpatrick), being active outside, or time spent getting into shenanigans with her friends.
Hello, my name is Michelle Hanna! My family and I started a new chapter three years ago here in Missouri. Prior to my move, I owned an Event Planning Company in California with my best friend. Now, I have the privilege of being a stay at home mama and a health and wellness consultant. Guiding others towards a cleaner, holistic lifestyle is my passion.
When not on the wellness journey, I love adventuring with my two little boys along with my husband of 8 years. Our Australian Shepherd completes our blissful chaos. Recently I have enjoyed fitness challenges, CrossFit, and running. I also love exploring the new world of sourdough baking.
Exploring STL’s vibrant food scene, organizing events for our city’s mommy groups, supporting women owned local businesses, and experimenting with sourdough recipes bring me immense joy. Joining the incredible community of women on STLMOMS is a highlight, as I vividly remember relying on such resources when we were newcomers in this beautiful city. Grateful to be a part of this amazing group!
Trina Harger is a composer of choral music in St. Louis. She is a type 1 diabetic, wife, mother of two boys, and has a Siberian husky named Sasha. She loves to sing, work on creative projects, and enjoys exploring all the fun spots of St. Louis!
Rachel is originally from the Chicagoland area, but has grown deep Saint Louis roots over the last fifteen years. She married her high school sweetheart and they live in the Metro East with their three children and spunky puppy. Rachel is the kind of Mom who loves watching her kids grow and learn new things, and also wishes time would slow down a bit.
Rachel and her husband love to travel together, dream together, and enjoy time with friends and family. Rachel loves getting lost in a story and is always up for a book or podcast recommendation. She loves time outside, good questions, long conversations, and a good theme to plan a party or meal around.
Rachel works as a Child, Adolescent and Family Therapist who provides counseling, parent coaching and equipping. She loves helping parents strengthen their relationships with their children, and helping parents understand their children through a developmental lens. Rachel believes we were all meant to be heard, feel known and be absolutely delighted in.
Heather Jacobson, Content Creator
Heather is a Kindergarten teacher turned stay-at-home mom. She has two small children, Miles (4) and Lottie (2). kids. Heather moved to St. Louis 6 years ago and lives in Glendale, though she is originally from Dallas, Texas. She loves spending time with friends, being social, and looking for the best deals. She and her husband are big foodies and are always looking try the next new restaurant. She’s so excited to become a part of this group as she loves sharing ideas and collaborating with fellow moms!
Christina Johans was born and raised right here in the Lou. She is a mom to Sophie & Cooper and a dog mama to Babe (frenchie), Luna (beagle) and Nash (lab). Within the past year she moved to Ballwin with her husband, Spencer. She is the “house manager” and a skincare enthusiast, selling her favorite products when she’s not busy chasing the littles around. Christina Is known for her passion for dogs, photography and friends and family would add “flipping homes” since this will be the third house they’ve lived in, in 4 years! Christina is excited to share what she’s learned so far as being a mom and her life here in the Lou.
Natalie Kalmar was born and raised in St Louis, but then took a 17 year hiatus –attending college in New Orleans and then building her career and starting her family in New York City.
Natalie has always been a St. Louis girl at heart and is thrilled to be home in the LOU and raising her family. Natalie lives in Chesterfield, MO and is a wife & mom to 3 children, including 5 year old boy/girl twins and a 7 year old son. After working in the Skincare & Cosmetics Industry for 17 years, Natalie has spent the last 1.5 years focused on her family, home and community. She is thrilled to be a part of St Louis Mom and contribute to their mission of helping women navigate motherhood.
In her free time, Natalie loves to break-a-sweat at various group fitness studios across St Louis and indulge in the local restaurant scene. If you like to eat-out and work-out, follow Natalie’s blog www.fitnessfoodiestl.com or on IG @fitnessfoodiestl.
Jennifer is excited to be a part of this amazing community! She currently resides in Fenton with her husband, two sons (Evan, age 5, and Jay, age 3), and her diva cat named Katniss. She supports the vibrant St. Louis entrepreneurial community in her role as founder and owner of Flawless Bridal Co., an on-location Luxury Bridal Makeup + Hair team currently serving St. Louis, Missouri, and surrounding areas. As a proud St. Louis native, she feels fortunate to have had the opportunity to raise her family and grow her business in this amazingly dynamic city. Come along with her as she shows you the ins and outs of being a mom who balances raising two sons and running her own business in St. Louis!
Maddie is a fulltime single mom to a biracial and bicultural daughter. When she’s not busy surviving her daughter’s tween years, you can find her reading. This proud book nerd’s other favorites include: coffee, Harry Potter, Spanish, fighting the patriarchy, scuba diving, skincare, tacos, and always advocating for inclusion. Definitely an introvert, she has way too many pets, and no longer allows herself to look at the social media accounts for Stray Rescue or the Humane Society.
A former educator, Maddie is now grateful to work from home as an analyst. Maddie is also a childhood AML Leukemia survivor, and has been battling Papillary Thyroid Cancer since she was 19 (without divulging her age, let’s just say it’s been way too long lol). She’s spent most of her entire life in the St. Louis area – some of her favorite things about the city are: STL sports teams, the Zoo, the cat cafés, Novel Neighbor, and Imo’s pizza (Provel cheese is still real cheese in her heart)!
Caitlin Ladd is mom to two boys, Harrison (2014) and Anderson (2019) and wife to George living in St. Charles, Mo. A St. Louis transplant who came to the area for college and never left, Caitlin is continuously busy exploring community philanthropic and cultural diversity efforts which has truly made St. Louis her hometown. As a working mom, she’s eager to discuss balance, embracing a full life in this mommin’ season and what it means to “have it all.” With that, she tries to layer in opportunities for self-care, sanity checks, some Shiraz and most importantly, SLEEP as a mom of two littles.
Amber and her husband Justin, are navigating being first time parents in their late thirties, to their son Beckett (2019). When not baby wrangling, yelling don’t eat that or Googling how to deal with back pain, what is this rash, or is my baby teething, they are usually busy DIYing the renovations on their new home in the Metro East.
In her work life, Amber works in event sales/event management full time. In the tiny amount of free time she has you can find her perusing interior design blogs, researching clean beauty trends, exploring art fairs, antique stores, estate sales and creating her own adventures all over the city.
Stephanie is a native of St. Louis, born and raised. She attended college at Maryville University (BA) and Lindenwood University (MA). Days are full as she divides her duties between her job as the Director of Volunteers & Special Events at a local food pantry and as wife to Chris, mom to a lively preschool-aged son, and “bonus” mom to two older daughters. If time allows, Stephanie devotes her time to various nonprofits who are dear to her heart. When she isn’t trying to figure out how to change the world, you can find her at home in Fenton catching up on all of her favorite Housewives or sitting back, watching the glorious chaos of home!
Katie Mueth, Senior Contributing Writer
Katie is a Des Peres mom of two young boys, Trace (2014) and Henry (2016). Katie stays home with her boys most of the time but also spends a bit of time away as a high school lacrosse coach. Katie enjoys connecting with other moms to run, meet at parks, explore new restaurants, listen to live music and discuss books. Katie and her boys can be found enjoying many activities around St. Louis including the Science Center, Zoo, Magic House, Museum of Transportation, Urban Fort and Frisco Train Store, but what they enjoy most is just being outdoors. They have tried many of the parks around St. Louis City and county and also love hiking trails at Laumeier Sculpture Park, Powder Valley and Shaw Nature Reserve. Katie and her family love all that St. Louis has to offer for families of young children and can most often be found taking advantage of all of the many opportunities.
Brianna Mullally, Events Team
Originally from a small town in central MO, Brianna and her husband Sean moved to St. Louis County in 2021. They have two boys, Liam (2018) and Rory (2021), and a puppy named Stella.
Brianna graduated from Missouri State University with her BS in Early Childhood Education and from William Woods with her MS in Athletic Administration. She taught middle school ELA until having their oldest son. Currently she is a stay at home mom during the week, and a professional bridal makeup artist (MUA) on the weekends. She has run her own MUA business since 2016. Even though she left the classroom, she continues to fight for public education and loves the variety of great school districts STL has to offer.
In her spare time she enjoys doing anything artsy, reading, and spending time with friends/family. She also can’t turn down an opportunity to throw a themed party (including Stella’s 5th birthday), and has created quite the celebration lover in Liam. Chances are if you walk into her house there will be some sort of party or holiday decorations everywhere.
Brianna is excited to join the STL Moms team and continue to embrace their values of community, inclusiveness, acceptance, and authenticity.
Arika Parr is a children’s book author based in St. Louis, MO where she lives with her daughter, Ava. From a very young age, Arika loved words and creative writing. Her passion for storytelling propelled her career as a TV & radio producer and community development professional. Then Ava came along, and Arika found a new passion – teaching her daughter, as well as other children, the importance of looking within for encouragement, positive self-talk, and perseverance.
This was the beginning of a new and exciting phase of Arika’s life, where she merged her two passions, old and new, to create something special: Ava + Mommy Publishing. It’s a way for Arika to use Ava’s real-life challenges to create social and emotional learning solutions through storytelling, in hopes of providing support and inspiration for other kids and parents.
Michelle Parrinello-Cason, Senior Contributing Writer
Michelle is a homeschooling mom of two (a nine-year-old girl and a three-year-old boy) who lives in South City with her husband, kids, two cats, and a dog. Her family loves reading, hiking, and art. She likes to write about education, work-life balance, and exploring all the wonderful experiences St. Louis has to offer.
Deepika Pujji, Content Creator
Carrie is a wife and dedicated mom to a lively 4-year-old daughter. Originally from Indianapolis, she has lovingly called St. Louis home for the past 11 years. She enjoys spending her time crafting, writing and attending multicultural events and festivals with her family.
Amy Sanders, Senior Contributing Writer
Amy is in her thirties with three kids under the age of 8, so her kitchen is always stocked with coffee, wine, and goldfish. She works part-time, tries to keep up with her book club, and is fluent in sarcasm. She loves raising her family in St. Louis and couldn’t get by without her tribe (or Netflix).
Jamie is a Des Peres mom and clinical psychologist with a specialization in child development and trauma. She is married with two little ones and is just entering the world of elementary school! While she has lived throughout the country, St. Louis has always been home and she is so grateful for the community here! She also enjoys running, true crime, and baking for everyone!
Meg Smidt is a confetti-throwing life and business coach, mother, grandmother, sister, devoted friend and love-spreader. She is super passionate about helping driven and compassionate women create balanced, joy-filled, intentional lives that they love (and that love them back). She spends her days strategizing with and encouraging women all over the world to be their very best. YourCoach Meg lives in Benton Park/ St Louis with her husband, one of her five adult kids and 2 silly dogs.
Trisha is a science educator and mom to Aiden, Lily, and Elon. She’s been married to her college sweetheart for 20 years. Trisha taught high school science before staying home with her kids. Before she was a classroom teacher, she was in the informal science realm working as an education specialist at an aquarium and zoo. Trisha is the creator of Inspiration Laboratories, a blog dedicated to encouraging learning through creativity and play. Her passion is sharing science activities with parents and teachers and demonstrating how to do science with even the youngest learners. Trisha lives on the outskirts of St. Louis and enjoys spending time with her family exploring the city and everything outdoors. She’s currently working on a master’s degree in science education and trying to decide what to do once her youngest starts kindergarten next year.
Heather Tatman is a born and raised St. Louis mom. She lives in South City In the Bevo Mill neighborhood with her hubby of 16 years and their 14-year-old son (they have a 20-year-old daughter away at college as well). Heather is a stay-at-home, homeschooling mom thinking about a possible change in these areas (possibly). When she’s not cheering on her kid(s) at their sporting matches or any other sporting event of the day, and doing all the adult things in between, she’s enjoying one or more of her favorite hobbies: reading, organizing, beer/wine tasting, cooking and the list just goes on and on.
Brittany Taussig is a St. Louis native who is re-discovering her hometown all over again as a parent. Lately, you can find Brittany and her husband Adam exploring all things trains with their two and half year-old twin boys, Caleb and Cole. Her family loves to participate in all kinds of experiences from trying out local parks, to watching the Circus Flora Circus every year, to visiting all the new indoor play places. Her family is often out and about on a new adventure!
When Brittany is not making memories with her family, she is helping support other families as a pediatric behavior specialist and board-certified behavior analyst. She recently opened her own private practice, called RISE Behavioral Consulting in the St. Peters area. Her practice specializes in helping children navigate through various social, emotional, and behavioral concerns that present both at home and at school. She loves to come alongside parents and remind them that they are doing a great job and that they aren’t alone. It can be incredibly hard to remember that your child is definitely not the one who has ever struggled with a particular concern or challenge! Brittany loves to partner with families to help them understand what their child’s behavior is trying to communicate and support them on this crazy, beautiful ride called parenting.
Mandi is originally from a small town and moved to Saint Louis in 2015 for a new job and new love. She has lived in a few areas of Saint Louis including the Central West End/De Baliviere and Lindenwood Park areas but has found a place to call home in Webster Groves. She has been married to her husband Seth since 2017 and they had their first son, Walter in March 2020. She is being inducted into the “two under two” club in January 2022! Mandi works full time as a Nurse Practitioner. When she is not working, you can find her park hopping and trying to wrangle her son, brainstorming freezer meal ideas, mourning the loss of “The Office” from Netflix, or at Katie’s Pizza and Pasta in Rock Hill. Mandi is passionate about making Motherhood feel less lonely and encouraging community through vulnerability.
Katie Vondera, Senior Contributing Writer
Katie is a St. Louis native, coffee lover, and difference maker. She has a passion for teaching at-risk high schoolers how to find joy in reading and writing. She is a divorced mother of two incredibly strong girls who can be found watching The Voice, eating ice cream, and staying up late reading. Katie and her girls love exploring St. Louis-hiking and playing at local parks, getting away to Pere Marquette, breakfasting at Strange Donuts or The Barn, and learning at all of the museums.
Kelly was born in Los Angeles, CA, and raised in her hometown of Broken Arrow, Oklahoma (GO BA!) where she graduated as a Tiger. Soon thereafter, she moved to Columbia, MO, and attended The University of Missouri-Columbia (a Tiger again!). She graduated in 2009 with her degree in Actuarial Science with an emphasis in Finance. While at Mizzou, she met her husband. Once they graduated, they moved back to St. Louis. They got married in St. Lucia in 2014 in front of all of their closest friends and family after being together for 5 years! A couple of years later (2! To be exact!) they had their oldest son! During the pandemic they had their youngest son and feel their beautiful family is complete! Being a Mom is the most challenging and rewarding job! Kelly truly LOVES and adores her boys! They are blessings and her heart! After working super hard at her job for the past nine years (almost a decade whoohooo!), she attained her dream role! She is a Data Engineer specializing in Data Integration. What is that? …maybe one day she will talk about it! She loves her job- it’s super challenging!! She is not the biggest fan of being on-call once a month, but! Hey! Sometimes you gotta do what ya gotta do! As mentioned earlier, Kelly loves St. Louis … she lives in Ballwin and adores her neighbors and neighborhood. Her family is the most important thing to her. They love doing everything together! They love taking their boys to parks, water parks (especially with summer! Whooo! )… pretty much any place that they can get all of that energy out!! They have energy for days … weeks … heck! She just needs 5% of it and she’d be set for the rest of her life! She and her husband also find it important to have their alone time- they love dates! Thanks to her super supportive and loving MIL, they get to go on dates from time to time! They love trying new spots to eat (Brass Rail is a new favorite with the best martinis!), going to the movies and traveling! Katie’s looking forward to sharing her thoughts on a variety of topics and she is hoping you will be open to listening and maybe discussing!
Rika White, a STL native is a mama to four wonderful boys, 2 of them being her bonus children; AJ (13), DJ (9), Paxton (9), and Santana (3). A soon-to-be wife to her fiance, T and currently resides in the North County area (Black Jack, MO). Rika is the statewide Director of an Organization for a Missouri Nonprofit and is navigating a blended family. As a young working mother, she loves to talk about the balance of motherhood and life. Her passion lies around youth and particularly gun violence and the mental health effects on minority children in the inner city from trauma-related experiences. In her spare time she enjoys traveling around the city with her family, working out, and having many forms of self-care.