I can lose hours of my day to blogs, Pinterest pages and Instagram channels filled with exciting products, fabulous concepts and passion pouring out of thousands of moms doing what they love. When I follow them I feel so charged and it makes me want to pull out my glue gun or my dusty never-used Kitchen Aid mixer that I got because I loved the colour. When people are writing or selling or making beautiful things it motivates me. I know that it has this effect on so many people… we can see the hashtag #PinterestFail as evidence of this. Those that create such beauty in their brand and business need to be honoured. They are taking a risk by putting themselves out there – heck it is scary as stink to do so! AND when they are doing it with children it makes it extra hard! Promise. So, I want to talk about mompreneurs that I think are cool as shit!
Ok, ok, I get it, my first post is about my mom. *Throw the popcorn and jeer now* however, hear me out! My mom is the O.G. mompreneur. She was the O.G. fill in the blank here for most things that are now main stream. Examples? Home schooling, home birth (which was illegal at the time), anti-vaxxer (this is not me opening up the vaccine debate!), sugar-free, vegan to vegetarian, flouride-free… you know the drill. She has chilled out on most of these things as we got older, but the 80’s were intense. Especially so since there was not a Whole Foods to be found. I can only imagine that it made our ‘life style’ challenging for her.
Anyway, my mom, Dwaina Sprague, always had little projects on the go. She is one of those women that would have maintained a flawless Pinterest Page, if there had been Pinterest then, consisting of hand made fancy pillows, cross stitch patterns and Puff Paint sleep shirts (it was the 80’s). I did not get her crafting gene. I have more #Pinterestfails than successes. Our birthday parties were themed and lovely and fun in that wholesome way. She puts me to shame and she had 4 of us home. All. The. Time.
Many of her felt crafts or sewing projects would be displayed at the local craft fairs for sale. We would participate however we wanted as she worked away in her craft/sewing room. I would sort the pins into colour codes (yes, I have always been this way!), my brother would play cars at her feet, my older sister would be doing teenage things somewhere in the house and my baby sister would probably be strapped to my mom in the neon blue wrap she had made – I got to pick the colour, and she actually went with my selection.
She continued with her entrepreneurial ventures all through our lives. Her gumption grew as she found herself with more time the older we got. She went back to technical school and graduated from the Design program at BCIT. She started a little firm that she operated out of our home while we were at school – yes, my parents stuck us in private school for high school so that we could get our Dogwood certificate (BC’s high school diploma) and get into university.
When I went away for university, before my sheets were even cold, my bedroom was stripped of all my teenage qualities and her drafting board went up – and her business continued to grow. She eventually outgrew my bedroom/her home office and she moved her business, Good Space Design, to Gastown in Vancouver’s colourful lower East Side.
My mom no longer has little ones running around her feet. She no longer has to juggle client care with Costco grocery shopping, hockey practices and ballet recitals. She does continue to fill her days with her entrepreneurial ventures and philanthropic work. She does amazing work with Covenant House Vancouver! Her latest? She is sleeping on the street to raise money so that we can create more shelter beds for homeless youth. Yes, she is a saint practically… my siblings and I all think she is a little bit scary too, how else do you keep four high-spirited children in line?
My mom’s love of beautiful, cozy spaces, her attention to detail, her love of nurturing and caring for others, her super strong nature (she is fierce!), and her raw talent with most things has made her the O.G. Mompreneur to kick off the site. She has also made me the ballsy mompreneur that I am today. So, thanks mom!