Making maille is nothing but repetition, having good light and work area, and patience similar to a saint. My goal of stockpiling little chainmaille bits has been working with my new method of working at the kitchen table (yes, this makes me reminiscent of Jo Packham’s introduction letter in every issue of Where Women Create, Where Women Create Business, and Where Women Cook). I maille during breakfast as a morning ritual, as well as while Hui.1 eats his meals and snacks. It’s a good way to be present and get things done. I only have 2 pairs of pliers out and all the rings I need for a specific project. This helps my mind focus when I work in my studio because having the little bits already made just makes for quick assembly and laying out new design variations for a collection.
The Work-Life Balance seems to be part of the new American Dream (after not being in debt and living with Mom and Dad as a 20-something adult). After following Penelope Trunk’s blog for several years, I’m very happy with the way my life as a mother has unfolded. Sure, it gets hectic when I’m sitting at the computer for most of the day and Hui.1 walks over to me every 15 minutes with a book in hand for me to read to him, but the fact of the matter is that I am with him to do so. And when I’m at the office, he follows my mom and dad around everywhere, occasionally coming over to acknowledge me, then toddles off in search of my dad, unless Mom is in the kitchen, then he wants to watch.
When we are home, it’s a treat for both of us to go up to the loft together. Now that he can climb onto the futon by himself, he enjoys being a “whack-a-mole” and greets me with a classic Hui.1 dimple grin of “HI MOM!”. It’s the little things like this that remind me how lucky I am and how lucky my kids are to have me around with them as they face the big and scary world in front of them. And it’s scary for me too, but we’re well armed with chainmaille, rocks, He-Man, and Dr. Seuss.