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It's all about good soil from the very start

My garden is about 1/8th of an acre now. I spent lots of time in there. Sometimes sleeping (I have an outdoor garden bed out there for hot nights!) Sometimes weeding. Mostly watering. The forced stillness of watering becomes a meditation, and all kinds of thoughts flow, too.

Here is the link to the original Instagram post, the morning that I had the soil thought:

"As my heart and head grapple with white privilege and racial injustice and the change I want to be a part of, I’m thinking a lot about soil. In my garden, I had some old dirt in a few garden beds - rocky, not many nutrients, cause I didn’t amend or even turn it. Then I have my new beds with rich, lush soil filled with good nutrients. I put the EXACT SAME SEEDS or starter plants into both soils. They both got the same sun. In many cases they are 2 feet away from each other, even. The seeds in good soil THRIVE. The seeds that started in hard, rocky soil just fight and struggle to grow. Swipe through these pics and see the role of good soil. Even worse, I think that I might be starting to water the bad soil ones less. They’re so stunted and behind...if time is short and I don’t have time for a FULL water, I find myself skipping the little strugglers. 😞. EVERY CHILD DESERVES GOOD SOIL. I’m formulating my thoughts for how I can do MY PART and help give every child good soil from the very start."

The exact same seeds in BAD SOIL (on the left) and GOOD SOIL (on the right):

Well, I've continued to think a lot about how our soil shapes who we will become. I believe entrepreneurship is a) a skill that can be taught, b) something that I can teach! and c) a way to amend the soil for all kids.

My kids have grown up in entrepreneurial "soil", and so they are constantly starting companies, or at least thinking about how they would start one. Fiona started Cisco Biscuits: Tasty Bonies for Good Dogs when she was 6. We did "consumer research" on West Cliff Drive as we offered samples to two different recipes to doggie passers-by. We haven't gotten very far, but Fiona is always planning for a Cat Cafe that could drive adoptions for our local Animal Shelter. Rowan started "GPO" or Go Play Outside, when he was 10 years old, making hand-made garden swings to get kids outdoors and off screens. Now in high school, he runs Ballistic Fox, a PC-building company to maximize performance for much lower prices than pre-configured hardware. Henry, who is now 10, has several financial models going to model out a few different business ideas and how the costs and revenue scale. But Henry's thinking more about homelessness and what it takes to buy and convert properties that could help be part of the solution. (Non-profits are companies, too!)

There is so much power in seeing problems and feeling like you have the skills to create something that could solve the problem. That's power at any age, but especially important when we are children. When you look at our very flawed world through the eyes of an entrepreneur, you just look around and think, "WOW! THERE ARE SO MANY PROBLEMS TO SOLVE AND SO MANY COMPANIES TO START!" Entrepreneurship is a skill that I wish all kids were taught. Especially kids from underserved, under-represented, minority groups. Let them help create the world they want to be a part of.

When you look at our very flawed world through the eyes of an entrepreneur, you just look around and think, "WOW! THERE ARE SO MANY PROBLEMS TO SOLVE AND SO MANY COMPANIES TO START!!"

A few years back, I created an entrepreneurship curriculum and taught it to First, Second and Third-graders graders at our local elementary school. Many years later, it is something that the kids and their parents still talk about to this day. As a matter of fact, their product is still for sale and generating revenue and their "commercials" are still on YouTube!

So, as part of my commitment to provide good soil for all kids, I have decided to get that curriculum DOWN and make it accessible to parents, teachers and others looking to help kids learn entrepreneurship. I am keeping it really simple, but they will indeed launch a real company in just a few weeks (or in one week if you do it a few hours each day). And for those of you parents who are curious about what starting a company is all about, please download it and learn along with your little ones while you teach! I also want to run a few summer camps next summer. So stay tuned! COMING SOON.

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