What’s The Good Life?

Some random thoughts on life and work.

I have a fantastic job and a pretty awesome life. I love making things and sharing them, and that’s what I do to make a living.

Actually, I have been lucky to have lived a charmed life. Although I’m not rich and at times I’ve been poor, I’ve never gone without food or a warm place to live. I’ve never had any serious health issues or accidents. And I’ve never been the victim of a violent crime. Now that I’m getting old and I have my own business, my life is even better. Last night I made a list of things I don’t do now, because I don’t want to and I don’t have to.

I don’t know what made me think of this. Maybe it was reading some info on the Craftsy instructors group about branding on marketing, maybe it was the two books I read recently (Drawing Blood by Molly Crabapple and All Who Go Do Not Return by Shulem Deen), or maybe it was just making my plan for the week and being happy that I am not answerable to anyone besides myself when I make that list.

My life isn’t perfect, of course. There are a lot of things most of you reading this would not enjoy: I have no guaranteed income and no retirement plan. My house is 150 years old which sounds lovely until you start thinking about pipes and wiring and foundations and crooked plaster walls. My newest car is a 2008 with over 150,000 miles on it. The nearest place to get a latte is a 20 minute drive. But all things considered, I have nothing to worry or complain about. (Which, unfortunately, doesn’t stop me from worrying or complaining on most days.)

As I work on my next books about my family history, I’m struck by the hopefulness and generosity of my great grandparents who moved to New York City where they lived in tenements and did manual labor so their children and, by extension me, could have a better life. They ran away from persecution, poverty, and the draft, and ended up in tenements and factories. A better life for themselves? I don’t think so.

  1. I, too live doing what I love to do, but have the added luxury of a pension, and a partner who still works to provide extras, often helping others, especially our grown kids. And, because of grandparents who came here from poverty in Scotland and England and fought in wars, I have the freedom to live so well. Gratitude and paying it forward is important, but you do so well to write their stories to have that permanent record. Thank you.

  2. I love this, Donna! I live by much the same rules, only I still have kids in the house. It’s sort of pirate-y. Yo-ho, yo-ho, the creative life for me!!!

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