This Saturday a cabbage will be tossed, a bell will be rung, speeches will be made about the official opening of the Bellingham Farmer's Market season. And I will not be there.
After over a decade of vending at my beloved market, I am calling it quits.
I'm tired. It's a lot to hold it all together, parenting and day jobs and production and all the details of showing up on time with a smile.
Franklin has been coming with me for the past few seasons, sitting under my table while I chat about hats and animals and how much the children have grown and what's happening downtown. He is quite a good helper when it's time to pack out. But he doesn't have the inclination for chatting. He has just about outgrown the table.
And then there is that job. The one I took when Steeb couldn't work. The one that engages my whole being and leaves me exhausted at the end of the week. The one that fills my head and heart with new questions where cashmere and business plans and zippers and new technologies for customer service once did.
And there is the natural evolution of creativity. I'll be honest, I'm tired of hats. I don't want to make that in a size smaller. Or blue. Or pink.
I always said I wanted to leave the market while I still loved it. I never wanted to become a bitter vendor unable to keep up with changes. But so much in my life and the world has changed and I don't have the energy to keep up.
So with a heart full of gratitude and memories I am declaring The End to my life as a vendor.
This isn't the end of moth and squirrel, but it is the end of a huge and important part of my business.
Moth and squirrel has always been about transformation and reimagining. Holding the worn out and broken and finding it's essential beauty, taking things apart to rebuild them as something new. Right now I am doing that with more than sweaters and t-shirts, I am doing it with my life.
Which leaves room for something new. For other projects to receive more attention. For lazy Saturdays when I refill the well of creativity and enjoy time with family and friends without a market table between us.
I have two summer camps planned and hope to continue teaching and sharing creative projects in that way.
There are some fresh coats of paint on wood down at the studio.
I'm finally weaving cushions from some t-shirt scraps at the house.
And we are almost always open on Art Walk nights at make.shift.