We are honoured to kick our 2021 journal off with the beautiful Kate Dalton of Mayde Teas. Based in Byron Bay Kate, mother of one, works as a naturopath and runs her boutique tea brand Mayde Tea which has quickly achieved a cult like status- and for good reason. We spoke to her about her journey into motherhood, work-life balance and the benefits of tea in our daily lives, particularly for busy Mama's.
Can you tell us a little about yourself and what you do?
I’m Kate, a naturopath and nutritionist and I started an organic tea brand called Mayde Tea back in 2013. I live just north of Byron Bay, but I grew up on the south coast of NSW in a beautiful place called Jervis Bay. Just over twelve months ago I gave birth to the cheekiest, most adorable little girl Alfie May. She has shown me a love so, so deep!
How did you find the transition into Motherhood with your adorable wee gal Alfie?
In the very beginning, I found it quite difficult! The birth came as a bit of a shock, and I had a challenging breastfeeding journey in the first few weeks. However- I recovered from the birth, became confident with breastfeeding, and quickly grew an incredibly enormous amount of love for Alfie and my new life with her in it. When I look back at the birth- although it seemed somewhat traumatic at the time, I wouldn’t change a thing. Alfie entered the world perfectly healthy and we are so grateful for that. I have balanced owning Mayde Tea and being a mother for a year now, and in the beginning that identity shift was tricky- but now I couldn’t imagine my life without Alfie in it. I have a great partner, wonderful staff and beautiful community and I am so grateful for them as my ‘village’ to get through the first year as smoothly as we did! I have gone from working in my business full-time, to now working a couple of hours each day and being a full-time mother to Alfie.
Has there been any standout hardships or surprises along the way for you?
I guess the recovery after birth was a bit more challenging than I expected. Leading up to my due date I focused so much on the actual birth that I didn’t really consider the post birth recovery too much! I was so amazed though at how efficiently the body heals after such a marathon! From the day I gave birth, I have truly believed that women are superheroes!
Alfie didn’t latch for about 5 days, and instead we had to syringe feed her my colostrum. I reached out to a lactation consultant who was so nurturing and helpful. I think breastfeeding is something I expected come naturally, but it surely was a skill that neither Alfie or I could quite grasp for a while. We have had a beautiful breastfeeding journey since then and I feel really lucky having the opportunity and ability to breastfeed.
How have you found the work life balance since Alfie came along?
I think being a business owner, it is inevitable to get the mum guilts to either of your babies! Being completely present with Alfie can make me feel like I’m neglecting the business, and vice versa. I have a great balance now- I have hired more staff including one in a management position to take some of the pressure off. I have had to really prioritise my time and know when to say no. This is something I have struggled with my whole life! But once you become a mother, I don’t think you have much of a choice but to fully prioritise your baby and your own health.
What does a typical day look like for you?
Every day is different, but when I have Alfie which is most days- I wake up and do a 20 minute meditation, feed Alfie and have a cup of herbal tea with a big glass of water. At the moment I’m drinking our energise blend a lot- especially in the mornings to wake up my digestion & improve circulation. We have breakfast as a family and then my partner goes to work. I work while Alfie naps, try to squeeze in some light exercise, and often catch up with a friend so Alfie can socialise with their kids. When my partner isn’t at work, we usually spend the entire day at the beach, taking turns surfing and playing with Alfie in the water. We are so lucky that the three of us are the happiest while in or near the ocean.
Can you tell us a little bit about how your brand Mayde Tea came to life?
Mayde Tea is an organic tea business that I launched in 2013. I was studying Naturopathy & Nutrition at the time, and quickly became obsessed with the affect that plant medicines have on the body. While studying, I used a lot of herbs myself to support digestion, improve sleep and lessen anxiety. I was ingesting these herbs in a tincture, and I started experimenting with making these same formulations in the gentler, yet effective form of herbal teas. I had incredible results! From there, Mayde Tea (sort of unintentionally) was born. I believe so deeply that our bodies have an innate ability to heal itself; and plant medicine has many mechanisms in which it brings the body back to optimum health. I feel so fulfilled spending my days sharing this magic with my community.
Certain herbs can help aid fertility, pregnancy and the post-natal period, what are a few examples of particular blends that you love to use and how can they be beneficial?
Fertility especially, is a really multilayered approach- and the inability to conceive can be caused by any body system including reproductive, nervous, endocrine or digestive. So treating fertility really comes down to the person. Prenatally, I do always support nervous system health. For this I recommend our serenity blend- not just before bed but also throughout the day. It’s a beautiful one to make the night before and pop into your drink bottle to drink iced throughout the next day for continual nervous system nourishment. Our energise blend is a great coffee replacement, being naturally caffeine-free and improving circulation to naturally support energy production. During the post-natal period I recommend our nursing blend. It has been naturopathic formulated to improve breast milk production, as well as support the digestive and nervous systems of both mum & baby.
What is a piece of advice you would give to a new Mama, that you wish you had known?
Accept the help, the food and the baby-holding offers in the beginning. If you own a business, delegate all of your responsibilities (if possible) so you can be 100% present with your fresh new bub and get the much-deserved rest when your baby sleeps.
Finally, I love to finish each interview with the question; What does a better world mean to you?
One of less waste, less consumerism, and a whole lot of kindness and acceptance amongst people.
I am so excited to share this fortnights beautiful journal with Charlotte from The Living Doula. Many of us have heard the term 'doula' but I've found many Mama's are still a little unsure of the immeasurable support they can offer us, from fertility, pregnancy, birth and into our post natal period, on this often challenging journey. Here, Charlotte shares her take on this important role and offers some very important lessons we should all be taking stock of, mother or not.
We are honoured to welcome Nature Baby to our journal this month. As kind as they are clever, Jacob and Georgia Faull, founders of world renowned baby-wear brand Nature Baby are in a league of their own, paving the way for ethical and organic business. A wee ways back I sat down with the dynamic duo for my book Wild Kinship; Conversations with Conscious Entrepreneurs and am excited to be sharing 5 questions for 5 minutes about this incredible brand and the work that they do.