Four years ago, this past August, I got together with one of my best friends. It was a normal day. Bernadette and I were going to eat soup and cheese, drink wine, and chat for a few hours while the kids played. It was a day like so many others we had enjoyed in the past. Or at least, that is how it had started out.
By the end of that wonderful day, Rhythm of the Home had been born. If memory serves, we had been sitting around the dining room table, talking about exactly how one should thread a serger, when the idea of a community based magazine first came up. Both of us had a passion for sewing, and after some thought, we purchased thesewist.com. As ideas started to just roll off our tongues, we moved from a sewing magazine, to a crafting magazine, to a community based magazine that encompassed all forms of crafts, parenting, and education. By the time Bernadette and her children left, we were the very proud owners of Rhythm of the Home.
Our husbands nodded, our parents were proud, and we were so very idealistic. This was not the first business that Bernadette and I had created. We had been doulas together for many years prior to ROTH, and Birthing in Balance was a business we loved and cherished. 4 children between us had made us slow down how many births we could feasibly take on, and we were clearly looking for another adventure.
Who would have ever guessed that 16 editions later, we would still be here? It was a dream. It was a dream to create a community of like-minded parents and artists, educators and writers who could come together and openly discuss the ways in which we could enhance creativity, a love of nature, and alternatives in education. It was a dream to see parents have a voice, and a creative outlet to express their views.
Oh that first launch night was a nightmare. We were so under the gun, so stressed, and our children so neglected that it seemed we needed to be reading parenting magazines, rather than creating them. At 7 am, we launched. We had some technical difficulties, but we did it. Seeing those first hits, those first comments, those first emails, oh my, that was magic.
The fact is that very few people thought that ROTH would be a success. It was a relatively new platform, in that we used WordPress to launch it. It was large, with a lot of contributors writing free of charge. It was not a business in the sense of profit, as it was always a labor of love, and it was a monster of a project to produce. Even against all those odds, we still went for it. We sent emails out to every person we knew. Every artist, crafter, parent, writer, educator, and author. We told them what we were doing, and why we were doing it, and we asked for help. The contributors came, the readers came, and Rhythm of the Home turned from a dream, into a reality.
If I can impart one thing to all of you reading this, it would be that dreaming is beautiful, but it is not enough. You have to pursue those dreams. No matter how realistic, how strange, or how unlikely someone tells you your situation might be, just go for it. Life is so short, it is so messy and chaotic and tough, so dream big, and then go for it.
I think that when we all get to the end of our lives, we want to know that we took a chance. We want to know that we threw realism to the wind, and opted rather for imagination and wish taking. As I am creeping toward my mid-life, I realize that is where the happiness lies. Taking something that we love, and creating something beautiful from it is the best way to be grateful for our talents, and to put them to good use.
To live our dreams is to live with purpose and with integrity for why we are here. It is to give meaning to the lives we have been so blessed to have, and it is to dance with others who share our vision.
A few nights ago, my oldest son told me (in a rather defensive tone), “I don’t like to dream, they always come to an end”. As a mother, that was a tough one to try and sit with, but what I came to the conclusion of is that dreams change and shift with where we are in our lives, and that acknowledgement, and the ability to allow those changes, is what keeps out dreams alive.
This is the last article that I will write for Rhythm of the Home, as today marks our final edition. Our dream is in no way done, but our means of expressing it have changed. The past four years have been a dream come true, for that you can be certain. My wish for all of you is that you will find your dreams, take a leap of faith, and jump.
Dream big my friends, dream big.
Heather Fontenot, co-editor and publisher of Rhythm of The Home, lives with her family on the Front Range of Northern Colorado. As a writer, doula, and yoga teacher, Heather has a passion for natural and creative living, and spends as much of her time outdoors as possible. She loves to knit, sew, garden, and homeschool her four sweet little ones. She writes the blog Shivaya Naturals, where she chronicles her life as a mother, artist, and gluten-free baker. Heather’s first book, Naturally Fun Parties for Kids was released in March of 2012.