Ashley says her biggest struggle was that she had no work history or college education so she had to create her own path and figure out her life – not just for herself, but also for her unborn daughter. “Before I got pregnant, I had a pretty nice life in Malibu, California, and that literally changed overnight,” she says. For one, she had to go on government assistance (using food stamps), forcing her to resign from a lifetime of eating healthy, fresh food, for a weekly ration of whatever was available to her. One might assume that a person so accustomed to homegrown food would recoil from the reality of food stamps, but Ashley proved to be an example of how one can navigate such a challenge with resourcefulness and a little intuition. “I had to rely on finding a farmers market to get high-quality fruits and veggies – which I ultimately found – but since the market was held only once a week, it was never enough to last the full seven days. It was hard.” She also recognizes the unlikelihood that others on the same food plan share her level of success, which in part came from her living in year-round warm weather, but also because of her innate knowledge of food.