The thing is, I think a culmination of different things and activities from my childhood really shape who I am and what I do and I can't say it's one book or one experience.
I have talked about my mom and her crafty influence on me. She was always making something and sold her crafts at craft shows. I've also talked about my dad's handiness and recycling and my grandmother's love of flowers and how that's all shaped how I feel about the planet and why I make upcycled jewelry.
But today, in honor of summer vacations, I would like to talk about Outta the Way.
For those of you who don't know, my boyfriend and I write a travel zine called Outta the Way. Actually, he writes it, I take the photos and put it together. We both love traveling to strange "out of the way" places. When we started going on our trips, I didn't really think about where I might get this urge from. Recently when taking a little road trip with my parents over a weekend we were visiting them, it all came back to me. While growing up, we would go on car rides all the time. My dad would point out interesting things along the way. I loved this as a kid. I still love this today.
Each summer my parents would take us on vacation. While most of my friends either didn't go on vacation every summer, or they would go on the same beach trip every year, my parents thought that it was important to take my brother and I different locations and expose us to as much as the world as they could afford to show us. I loved vacation, but I don't think I realized how cool my parents were for taking us on them. Now, while our funds are very limited for this sort of thing, we try to make sure we show my step-daughter as many different places as we can, even if it's just a road trip on the weekend. That's really why Jim and I started Outta the Way. To show people there is so much to do without spending too much money.
If my parents hadn't taken me on different car rides and interesting vacations, I'm not sure that I would think to do them now. I wouldn't have taken the tens of thousands of photos I have taken of the gorgeous, abandoned, historical or just plain weird places we have been to.