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I’m starting to feel the momentum of something really big starting to build up. My friends are starting to take their Art/Craft/Make more seriously. I think so many people are stuck in the mind set

“But I can’t make money doing what I love – it’s just hobby”

because school prepared them for the soul crushing boredom of a desk job. Our culture perpetuates the idea that when you “grow up” you have to get a “REAL JOB” something you will most likely hate, but how else are you going to pay for your kid’s braces? I have been so incredibly lucky to have grown up in a household where Mom and Dad don’t “go to work”.  They are both extremely talented artist who make their living doing what they love. But even for me it has been really hard to shake this deep rooted cultural belief. My Dad went to college to be an architect. He knew that he loved art, but his parents had advised him that;

“being a artist was completely unrealistic”

and after all he did love old buildings. He quickly realized that he couldn’t stand it, and transferred into the art program the rest is history.

My dad was brave. How many people never made that step? another lie that gets in people’s way is:

“But I’m not talented enough to do this for a living”

The TRUTH is that talent is only 1% of the battle. You will get good at something by doing it.

The old model for most of America was to get a good job at General Motors with health insurance and a retirement stipend. That is no longer an option. We now have a chance to reconsider what we want working in this country to look like.

I’m not saying that everyone should quit their job and become an Artist, I just want you to do whatever is in your heart to do! Whether that’s A dairy farmer, bike mechanic, writer, fashion designer, or starting a traveling side-show.

If you wake up in the morning excited about your day there is no limit to what you can accomplish.


About rosebeerhorst

My name is Rose Beerhorst I'm 20, I love working with my hands whether that means crafting, gardening, or cooking. I've always dreamed a little too big for my own good!

13 responses »

  1. I love everything about this post. Right on, Rose

  2. Well stated. I completely agree. 🙂

  3. trust. it’s not easy-but i’m sure your parents can tell you that. i’ve never had a real job- just been a maker for 35 years. my kids are in college as music majors now and have grown up with a single parent who supported them by making and selling their whole lives. they have a path to follow as do you. very fortunate that you have living examples of how it works.

    at 55 my family (step parent and brothers and sisters) are still waiting for me to fail. it’s understandable. they are all 9-5 ers working for the system. it’s not for everyone. i trust you will be fine. even now after all this time i worry now and again how i am going to keep it going….but somehow i do!

  4. I love your post, Rose!

  5. wonderful words! i always struggled with my wish to be a maker / crafter, mostly with myself and sometimes also with the people around me. like that sentence “But I’m not talented enough to do this for a living” was so often going through my mind!
    but now i really fell i’m going through a phase where i start trust in myself and also i feel a big encouagement from my environment. this is also because i meet wonderful and talented people like you and your family an the whole etsy crowd on the internet and help me see that there is a way to live the dream!!
    “If you wake up in the morning excited about your day there is no limit to what you can accomplish.” – so true! thank you so much!
    lots of love from switzerland,

  6. You seem like a sweet little thing. As I read about your family on Etsy and all the judgmental thoughts and questions ran through my head, I squelched them as I have never walked in your parents’ shoes and do not know how great it could be to live like they live and so on. THEN I chose to read your little blog here my dear. Consider that there are families like mine, where parents have worked hard and sacrificed and worked desk jobs, paid taxes,
    saved for college, AND followed passions, planted, harvested, created beautiful music, sell and install art, have children that go to schools and find new passions, etc. Consider how self righteous you sound and how spoiled you sound. Your Dad may have been “brave” in your mind, but how hard is it to be brave when you have parents that have “real jobs” to give you choices in life. Try very hard not to take other people’s choices for granted so that you don’t sound so self righteous. My family works very hard at both “real jobs” so that we can do amazing art, and music and our kids all make and sell art. Their passions , because of those horrible little school desks :), have extended to include a huge world of interests. You can be in a school and have amazing passions fulfilled and have a really weird family too. I know you are very young, but to be respected, you must be respectful. Consider this, amazing artists are out there and most are either publicly funded or commissioned or supported by all those people that have “real jobs”. Consider your little neighborhood that you live in, you have public works, clean streets, safety, an emergency facility nearby, all thanks to the “real jobs”. Most people are not at jobs that they hate, my dear. Those that consider art only a hobby and not a real job, perhaps have not had the experiences that we have had, and likewise, to determine that school is preparing my children for “soul crushing boredom” would be an equivalent to that lack of experience.
    Live Long and Prosper.

    • Jennifer Edwards

      May I be a little obnoxious and ask what is not understandable about “I’m not saying everyone should quit their job to be an artist”? What part of this post is disrespectful? What part is self-righteous? She’s simply sharing her and her parents’ experience living against the dominant mind-set in our culture that institutional schooling/ living is THE ONLY way to succeed (and by success we generally mean financial prosperity). I don’t get the sense that they disdain the infrastructure we all enjoy.
      Also, I think that instead of “sweet little thing” and “spoiled” you may want to write “bold, innovative, kind, loving, respectful, responsible.” Oh, and “great clothes.” But maybe my perspective is a little skewed since I live in her “little neighborhood” in the dollhouse a few streets over.

    • Apparently I am the only one who agrees with you, Martha. I also wonder how this family can afford emergency medical treatment for 6 kids, should the need arise. And with 6 active kids, I can’t imagine it doesn’t. Also with dental care being as expensive as it is, I wonder how they provide even basic dental care for 8 people. Perhaps at taxpayer’s expense? If that is the case, I hope they are grateful to all us taxpayers with our sad “mind numbing, soul crushing” jobs. I would have assumed their home business paid for all these needs if it weren’t for the fact that in their blogs and interviews they discuss their lack of money… a lot. Quite frankly, I never would have questioned their choices in life had it not been for the smug, self righteous tone of “REAL JOB”.

    • While I value the opportunity to hear other people’s opinions on a wide range of subjects, I also reserve the right, as do you, to heartily disagree.
      It’s just too bad you chose to frame your disagreement in such a condescending and patronizing way.

      Rose, great stuff you’ve got going! Don’t believe the haters!

  7. I am having a difficult time understanding why Martha and Jennifer are so angry about this post. I’ve read it several times and find nothing self-righteous or spoiled about it nor do I sense any judgement about the choices of others but I do sense real judgement from Martha and Jennifer and I would ask why?

    I just discovered the Beerhorst family through Etsy and was immediately taken with their family, values and way of life. I agree with Rose’s statement that it took real courage for her father to give up the idea of corporate America and follow his passion – one has only to read the negative comments here to understand that. Too – a father at home is often viewed in a negative light. Why? when so many men are abandoning their children across the US and Canada.

    In regards to benefits and dentistry – I would hazard a guess that the family barters for services and at other times finds the money. Anyone with kids complains they don’t have enough money. If they have some sort of social assistance – who cares? Why is that any different from the arts grants that people get? The arts have to be supported or our culture dies – they are an extremely talented family and I would love to live in their neighborhood and have my children hang out with them. I find all their writings and videos to be inspiring as I set my feet on the path towards my dream – becoming a working artist. Perhaps if I had had more encouragement along the way as I give my own children I would be “there” today but I am parenting myself and allowing myself to make what I want with no judgement and hopefully others will like what I make.

    Perhaps the people that object to the Beerhorsts are angry that they get to do what they want – but guess what – all of life is a choice!


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