I am a Twin Cities Mom: Ashley Elwill

Today’s I am a Twin Cities Mom feature is all about Ashley Elwill!

“Hi! I’m Ashley Elwill. I’m a mom of two (a five-year-old and two-year-old) and a fluffy dog. My husband and I are high-school sweethearts and just calculated that we’ve been together for 16-ish years. He’s my best buddy. As a family we love to camp, hike, and hang out in our backyard. Outside of my family life, I run a photography business. I usually shoot nights and weekends, so that I can be home with my kiddos during the day, and edit and email into the dark hours of the night. While I really love shooting, my favorite part about my job is the people. It feels like a little hangout with friends every time I shoot.”

I am a Twin Cities Mom: Ashley Elwill | Twin Cities Mom Collective[Photo credit: Mallory Kiesow Photography]

What do you love about calling the Twin Cities home?

I moved to Minneapolis from Wisconsin for college in 2007 and never left! I fell in love with the community and made my closest friends in college and through my work as a photographer. We’ve fallen in love with almost everything the Twin Cities has to offer, but we will always be Packer fans.

If we peeked in your purse right now, what would we find?

Chapstick, my wallet, pirate’s booty, sanitizer and my car keys. It used to be all of these things + diapers, wipes, spare kid clothes, toys, etc. It’s amazing how quickly things change.

How do you prioritize friendships and connections with other women?

Lots of texting and funny reels! I’ve found that the simplest message from a friend with a funny video or quick check in means so much mid-day and mid-chaos, so I try to do the same.

Being a mom is no easy task. How do you relax and take care of you?

Right now relaxing is getting the kids to bed, only working for an hour and then watching TV with a good snack (like pickles and cheese, pickle chips, pickle ham roll ups… anything pickle related, really.)

What’s been your greatest joy in motherhood?

The things that became insignificant over time are suddenly really beautiful and exciting again. Earth worms, holidays, snow-people…While it’s overwhelming to be a parent, the healing that their joy brings and watching them grow is worth it x 1,000,000.

What have you found most challenging in your motherhood journey?

The guilt. If I’m not feeling guilty about one kid getting attention while the other isn’t, then I’m feeling guilty about the people waiting for an email response or our poor dog not getting enough snuggles. The guilt…it never ends.

How do you hope your life influences and/or inspires other women?

It’s always been a challenge, especially over the past year, to stand up for what’s right and do it in a way that can actually help. Sometimes that means being bold and calling someone out on something, in a kind and loving way. A lot of the times, it means making sure someone feels worthy, accepted, and loved. If I end up inspiring anyone, it’s because someone else made me feel worthy, accepted, and loved first and then helped me learn and grow.

Twin Cities Favorites

Date Night Restaurant: Gardens of Solanica in Northeast Minneapolis

Best place to hang out and have some fun: Any of the Three Rivers Parks! We love French Regional Park and Baker Park.

Local Boutique: I’m not very familiar with boutiques–but love thrifting. Hidden Treasures in St. Anthony is one of my favorite spots.

Local Coffee Shop: Carma Coffee

Locally based online business: Maven Style Shop

You can find and follow Ashley on her website and on Instagram @ashleyelwill.


We love having the opportunity to share the personal sides of local Moms of the Twin Cities! If you would like to recommend another local Mom you think should be featured in our I Am a Twin Cities Mom series, please email us at info@twincitiesmom.com.

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