Somehow, I went from being a successful, high-pressured fashion executive to a New York City housewife in one fell swoop. Let me tell you, it was a shock to my system!
Previously, my days were spent designing clothing and accessories, managing a team of 40 and being part of a business that generated $1 billion dollars in sales.
Suddenly, my days are spent cleaning, buying groceries, cooking, walking back and forth across town picking up and delivering a child, and then cleaning up all over again. As someone who’s self worth has been so clearly defined by my accomplishments, this left me feeling unappreciated and bitter.
This week however, my mindset has been transformed, after spending a few days with a friend and her daughter at their beautiful home in East Hampton.
V is the original Urban Pioneer woman. An accomplished artist, V has channeled her creativity and passions into her home and family. A masterful quilter, she has made the magnificent quilts and pillows that grace the beds in her home. She also donates many of them to charity, and takes commissions on a limited basis.
Her lush garden provides much of the family’s produce, and at the end of the season she freezes and cans the last harvest to provide vegetables and homemade sauces for the winter months.
She creates her own convenience foods, by mixing up dry ingredients for pancakes and spice mixes to use at a later date. Time permitting, Monday is a day to make breads and stocks, freezing them or canning them for future use.
She has also made her home chemical free, by mixing up her own soaps and cleaning products.
But this isn’t someone who is a crazy over achiever, or someone who requires an unnatural level of perfection. This is a woman who enjoys the challenges that these undertakings provide, and has in many ways simplified her life to allow herself the time to do the things she enjoys for the people she loves.
As a result, her daughter is a healthful and experimental eater, appreciating the flavors and freshness that she has been exposed to. Her desire to preserve the environment, and her love of animals comes naturally. She is a smart, self- assured and happy child, who is surrounded by parents who set positive examples for her through their actions.
I love to cook, and I enjoy the challenges of making something from scratch. In watching V, I realized that I too, could indulge my passions and define my accomplishments by creating projects that challenge my creativity and still benefit my family. My daughter is becoming interested in cooking, and I have the power to fuel that interest and help her explore new foods and techniques. I now have the precious gift of time to be able to take her to the zoo, work on art projects, or go to visit friends.
I have made the conscious decision to embrace my present situation and make the most of my time while I have an abundance of it. Some day I will be back in the working world, swigging Maalox, and reminiscing about my time off. It’s never too late to strive to create some positive memories that I can cherish down the road.
You can see V’s beautiful quilts and gain insight into her life through her popular website, BUMBLE BEANS.
photo: Glasshouse Images