It wasn’t until I went to college that I made my first real best friend. The kind that sticks, for life. She was in art school and I was in journalism school. We met and almost instantly fell in love. We spent all of our time together, thought everyone else sucked in comparison to the other, and shared dreams of a grand future.
Part of the tenor of that time was our intense desire to make our lives meaningful. To us, this meant our work – my writing and her painting. (She’s a film editor now.) I’m sure we were absolutely insufferable to be around, but the memories are dear to both of us. The other day we were talking on the phone and I reminded her of something I read during that time that struck me. It was advice to young artists and writers, something along the lines of, unless you would die without this kind of work, don’t bother. At the time, I thought, “Hmm, I’m not sure I would die without it. Maybe I’m a wanna-be.”
Life carried me along. I left journalism school for a liberal arts education and then found my way into journalism anyway. I had a great time working at a news magazine in Washington, DC for a few years. Then I had a baby and moved to Seattle where I quickly figured out there was almost no media, certainly nothing like DC where reporters are as common as hikers in Seattle. Suddenly I found myself without my work. And I felt like I was going to die.
For three years there was part of me that withered without words and ideas buzzing around in my head. I knew it wouldn’t have been enough for me to write without readers. The point is to communicate. Fussbucket has proven to be the perfect solution to this problem. I love this blog. And if I had become a parent ten years ago, I wouldn’t have it. That’s a scary thought.
This got me thinking about other mothers out there who also need their work to maintain their sanity. Mothers who want to their stuff to be seen and appreciated, who need that connection with the larger world. And then I got an idea.
Fussbucket will now be hosting Mom Shop. Here you will find links to sites run by women who are parents, but they are also artists, jewelers, photographers, and more. For starters it will work like a Blogroll on the side of the home page. Scroll down and you will find our first three links: WooWoo Bags, made by my good friend Hilary in DC, Lemon Tree Jewelry started by my neighbor Sara who just had baby Jasper a few months ago, and Janet Klinger Photography, a Seattle-based business with a studio up the street from my house. All moms doing their thing.
Join me in supporting these businesses and others like them. These days it’s cool to buy handmade crafts, see this NY Times article on that topic. And it’s even cooler to let those creative mamas out there know we’re digging what they’re doing.
I’ll be on the hunt for more businesses to add to Mom Shop. You can send me links at: FussbucketNW@yahoo.com.