You Are Your Children’s Inspiration
My favorite podcast evar is the Woolful podcast by Ashley Tousling. Ashley works from her homestead new home in Idaho, where she and her husband are raising sheep, a family, and building a yurt themselves. She is an inspiration herself! She’s one of my favorite bloggers, podcasters, and instagrammers. She is obsessed with knitting and making and creatives and fiber in general. She is currently working on a year-long project, learning to spin yarn by spinning fiber sent to her from little fiber farms all over the country and then knitting them up into squares and sewing them into a blanket – called 52 Weeks of Wool, which I adore. Most of all, I love that in her podcast, she features the sides of the fiber industry that aren’t normally necessarily shared with those in the knitting side of things. One of my favorite episodes is where she interviews Thayne Mackey, a guy from Montana who turns wool from his sheep into fire-retardant home insulation, which I’ve now bookmarked for the one-day-Wheat-and-I-will-build-our-dream-house-in-the-woods day. All this to say, I love that she really dives deep into the people behind the fiber-related businesses and gets their story, and that not all of them are just yarn dyers and knitters. Although lots are, and I love them too.
A couple of weeks ago, Ashley’s Woolful podcast was about Anna Maria Horner, owner of Craft South in Nashville. Anna Maria has owned multiple small businesses, has designed and sewn small batch fashion lines, has done freelance design work, and now owns a successful online business and retail location based in Nashville called Craft South. She sells her own line of fabrics, as well as a small selection of yarns and other crafting notions. All this, and she is a mom of SEVEN. That’s right. SEVEN children.
Anna Maria spoke words in her podcast interview that calmed and quelled the fear I’ve been harboring with our first baby due in May. I’ve been holding it together, and really, I’ve been surprisingly calm and comfortable about the whole idea of having a baby… for the most part. However, deep down, I know I’ve been nervous about how I’m going to do it all. How am I going to keep my day job as an attorney, still devote time to Maiden South, and be a tiny human’s mama all at once? And do a decent job at any or all of those things? Enter this podcast and the wise, wise words of Anna Maria Horner.
If I gave up my day job, which is very good to me – they’re flexible with my schedule and completely understanding of my creative needs and soon-to-be needs as a mama – I’d be doing my child a disservice in multiple ways. First off, I’d be depriving baby K (not to mention Wheat and myself) of a stellar health insurance plan, but more than that, I would be ignoring a principle that I’ve always believed to be true (which Elizabeth Gilbert touches on in Big Magic – but that’s another inspirational post for another Friday!): as long as you are self-sufficient and can pay your bills, you can do whatever you want. I’m so grateful to have a great job so that I can do whatever I want in my free-time, which for me, includes my many creative endeavors, the ones I love so much.
On the flip side, if I quit my day dream at Maiden South, I would be telling my child that when things get tough you should quit… even if you love doing it an awful lot. Sometimes, you do have to take some time off… but when it’s something you’re passionate about, I believe that it’s important to make it work, make time for it, make it happen… whatever that may mean for you. Maiden South has done some pretty amazing things on our little corner of Bainbridge and most especially in my life, and I’m so grateful that Jessica Grace and I took a leap of faith and just did the damn thing a year and a half ago. And I’m grateful for a business partner who is going to allow me to take a step back for a minute while I figure this whole mama thing out at first. And I’m grateful to all of you who will continue to shop and be understanding when there’s a baby in the back of the shop with me!
I know that there is a lot to figure out and there are some major changes ahead for me to work around… so just bear with me. I’m trusting in God and taking all of this day by day. I keep repeating “Give us this day our daily bread.” God didn’t tell us to pray for and plan for bread for a week, a year, or a 5-year plan. He taught us to pray for daily bread. So that’s what I’m doing. Praying for the abilities and wisdom and capacity to do each day and do it well. I trust that He will provide that!
I also pray that one day, my what could be labeled as stubbornness/hard-headedness (and when I’m feeling really down and guilty, my selfishness) to not give up on either my day job or day dreams inspires my child to become a self-sufficient, self-sustaining, creative and inspired and God-trusting human adult, and I pray that they too, will know when to just do the damn the thing. I’m confident that if I place my trust in God, he’ll take care of the details and together we’ll make this attorney/business/life/motherhood balance work. I’ll just take this balancing act moment by moment and try to enjoy the ride!
Thank you to Ashley Yousling, Woolful, and Anna Maria Horner for sharing your stories and for these words that spoke to my almost-mama heart. I hope they speak to you, too!
Listen to more Woolful podcasts at woolful.com
Visit Anna Maria Horner at Craft South