Aurelia Ugarte lives in Jacksonville, Alabama, where she co-owns the restaurant Heirloom Taco. “My parents have a food truck in Austin, so the food industry is something I grew up around and I’ve always had a passion for,” she says. Aurelia started the restaurant with her husband (and high-school sweetheart), Shane, and his parents. “I always tell people we’re the real-life Bob’s Burgers — except we make tacos,” she explains. “We’ve got the three kids and everything.” Here, Aurelia shares five go-to looks…
“I never got to experiment with fashion as a kid. We were a lower-income family, so my options felt limited. I was also afraid to stand out. Even as an adult, it took time. I got pregnant with our first child when I was 20. I was going to school full-time and working full-time. Then we welcomed our second daughter right before I graduated from college. I remember submitting a final from the hospital after giving birth. Shortly afterward, I got postpartum depression. For support, I joined a Facebook mom group, and I ended up finding the community that brought me out of my shell. My friends Noelle and Caroline encouraged me to find my style. I finally feel like I’m able to experiment with clothes the way I always wanted to.”
“My first tattoo was of a strawberry plant and basil plant, in honor of my daughters. My older daughter has a strawberry birthmark, and my younger daughter’s name is Basil. I got my arm tattoo because the image reminded me of old portraits of Mexican women. I was born in Mexico, and I wanted to proudly display that heritage.”
“My fanny pack is my second skin. It’s so comfortable that I can wear it all day while keeping up with the kids. I used to overpack my bags but realized there are only a few things I really need. Now I’ve always got diapers, wipes, snacks, my wallet, Chapstick and lotion.”
“I love a jumpsuit, especially this one. When you own a restaurant, you never know when you’re going to be called in, and this is such an easy outfit for that transition. On busy days, I can just throw up my hair, put on sneakers, and jump in.”
“Shane and I met in 10th grade math and moved to Jacksonville together to attend college. He left school after a few semesters to train as a chef, while I finished my hospitality and culinary degree. We both worked in restaurants during those years, in every single position (dishwasher, server, host, caterer, manager — you name it), and realized we wanted to do that for the rest of our lives. We got married a month after finding out I was expecting Mila, in a backyard ceremony with our closest friends and carne asada. We were terrified, but it also felt right for us to start our own family and restaurant.”
“This is my ‘Park Mom’ outfit. I wear these overalls three times a week; I even wore them when I was pregnant by unbuttoning the side buttons. I never used to put on earrings, but one day I realized they instantly make me feel pulled together. Now, I wear them every single day. I even keep a pair in the car, just in case!”
“I’ve had lots of anxiety since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. In Alabama, abortions are now banned. It’s really hard knowing that if we remain here, and nothing is done, my daughters won’t have the right to choose. The thing that gives me hope is seeing so many people rallying together and willing to help each other.
Many people, for example, are donating to organizations like Yellowhammer Fund, which supports reproductive rights and ships free emergency contraceptives to people who need them.”
Thank you so much, Aurelia!
(Photos by Morgan Lee for Cup of Jo.)
Note: If you buy something through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission, at no cost to you. We recommend only products we genuinely like. Thank you so much.