Growing up, I always referred to my own mother as “momma.” It later became a hilarious argument amongst my sisters and I about how “momma” was actually spelled. One sister said “moma” with one m; the other insisted “mama”, one m, two a’s; and I, for reasons totally unknown, am convinced it is “momma” - two m’s, one a. And now, as we’re all grown, my sweet dear mom, trying to appease all three of her strong-willed daughters, signs her emails “Love, mom, moma, mama, momma, Rhetta [her grandmother name]”
The word momma (however you choose to spell it), is inherently Southern, though a modern-southern. Growing up in South Georgia, this, of course makes sense. It’s comfortable, hospitable, and welcoming, just as all Southern Mommas typically are. My own mother called her mom, Mother, and still refers to her that way to this day. It always felt so strange and disconnected to me to use such a formal word to describe the woman who raised you. Alas, my mom grew up in the 50s & 60s. Your mother was your parent more than your friend, and the formality is fitting. However, as I call my mom 3 times a day and run my every thought directly from my brain to my mouth to her ears, momma seems like just the right word - my mom, my friend, my confidant.
What’s a “Momma Muse”?
So here it is - my Momma Muses - the women I most admire who are also, as it happens, mommas themselves. These are an inspiring collection of women I’ve met through my personal and professional life who seem to have the whole balance figured out (though I’m sure they’ll argue that point). It’s my hope that by sharing their stories, what inspires them, what moves them, their tricks for getting through the day running two businesses (their own defined by the government + a household) that you yourself will find a renewed strength in yourself and your abilities. You’re capable and strong, and having a community around to remind you of that is the whole point of thing thing, right? Okay now, let’s get to it.
Name: Elaine Burge
Business: Elaine Burge Art
# of Children: 2
What does your typical day look like?
I start with a circus of feeding Lucy and Bonnie in their PJs, get Lucy into something easy to play in for school, then Lucy and Bonnie's cousin, Chris, arrives for carpool to preschool and then we are off to the studio. I wear Bonnie in an ergobaby while I paint and work on jewelry until 2:30 when I head home to hang out with the girls until Richey gets home from work around 6:30 when we cook dinner (have little local places to eat) and then start our bed time routine of bath, books and snuggles.
What’s your favorite part of your day?
snuggling the girls as they fall asleep at night
What’s the one thing you hope your children have learned from you that they will share with future generations?
To love people well
Any tricks for keeping the balance between work and family?
I try to be as productive as possible while at the studio so that I can take the afternoon off to be with family
What’s your most treasured accessory? Is this a story behind it?
probably my baby carrier at the moment!
What accessory makes you feel most like a woman?
My hair extensions!
Favorite MFF piece:
My diamond cluster ring using stones that my parents gave me for high school and college graduation
Anything else you’d like to share? What’s on the horizon for your business?
We are launching a spring line called 'Welcome to the Jungle' including many one-of-a-kind pieces of jewelry and an array of animals found in the jungle. You can shop them on my site in late April!