So here I am at just at 5am eager for the day, our big grand opening for our new storefront! I have bouts of excitement, fears of forgetting everything that needs to be done, silly ideas of how I’m going to completely fumble over my words for today’s ribbon cutting and subsequent interviews and about every other form of feelings one would have on a day like this.
It’s been 2+ years in the making since opening online and honestly, wasn’t something I had planned on my road map. I always thought that I would just stay online and do the occasional rodeo, vendor show or private party with my mobile trailer so I could alter my schedule around my full-time job and my family. But I firmly believe God will put opportunities right in front of us so we will trust His plan to try what He sees from His 50K foot view up there! Back in December 2018, I was at the Preston Holiday Celebration and set up a small little pop up at BJ Photography’s Studio on Gillet St for her Holiday Mini Sessions. A few days later, a City Council member approached me about their Incubator Project for the building on 12 W Gillet. I was instantly excited and knew it was something I had to try.
I walked in and saw the 12’ ceilings, the old original vault from the City Clerk’s days, the sliding pocket doors and original woodwork and fell in love with this building. I had so many ideas of what I could do with the 700 square foot of space that only continued to change about 50 more times upon getting all our merchandise in store! Today the old original vault is now our children’s play area and those 12’ ceilings are being taken full advantage of for wall space to display our items. The pocket doors will serve as our backdrop in future live videos or photo shoots on rain days and will be perfect! We’re now known as the “store with the turquoise door” and it couldn’t be more fitting as turquoise has been a staple branding color for us since the beginning.
I haven’t told many this story I’m about to share but it’s one I feel necessary to share with you all now. Sometimes people will look at the point of a business where they’re at now and forget everything they have overcome to get to that point. You see, last summer I was seriously contemplating selling the business. It wasn’t that I didn’t love what I was doing, not in the slightest it was because I created a business that was no longer conducive for balancing my family time. Even after 18 months in business, I wasn’t planning like I should have been doing. Therefore, when I was home from work and with my family, my head would be stuck in my phone the entire time putting up posts on social media, sending manual invoices, ordering merchandise randomly and responding to messages at all hours. It created a strain within my marriage and made me feel terrible as a mother. So it was at this crossroads that I either had to just quit and sell the business or make a major change in my business operations. Obviously, you know which I chose.
I hired a marketing business to help take some pressure off the social media presence and website management. I implemented a new system within Facebook to allow ladies to comment easily and automatically get an invoice for the item of their choosing instead of manual invoices. I started waking up earlier before my family got up so I could get more uninterrupted screen time done and started scheduling what was going to post when I was home with my kids. It took getting to a dark area to force me to spend those dollars on the backend instead of allocating all dollars back to new merchandise. But I’m thankful it happened. I did a lot of praying, a lot of crying and had a lot of restless nights back then. But when I look back at it now and see the path to where we were to where I’m at now, I can’t help but bask in God’s work and what He has provided. I look at the months that I didn’t think I knew what I was doing and thought I couldn’t financially continue to recent when the community support for the new store has helped grow the business exponentially.
I’m now at another crossroads to hire more staff to serve our community better and just like all the other’s it’s a scary one for me. My marketing team and my wizards behind the books are the only virtual ladies I have on board now but for some reason to hire someone to work at the store and events with me seems like a huge step and responsibility. So in the coming weeks I will begin preparations to onboard additional help to ensure that when you come in store, you’re getting the best service we can provide.
I’m sure I’ll meet a lot more intersections that are scary and giving an interview to a paper or radio station will be like a cake walk compared to those decisions. But for today, I’m ever so grateful (and in tears as I write this) for all of your support and either your online encouragement or in person. I’m thankful that for this grand opening I was able to call in my family troops to come help each day. If it wasn’t for them, my anxiety would be even greater today so I’d like to say a sincere thank you to my Lamberton Family for helping these couple days. They were there on our first Saturday opening thankfully and helped out as we were busy as well. Thank you to my marketing team, Noir & Co for calming all my random questions and thoughts and helping with all creatives and online activities. To my In-Laws, thank you for all your help in building and setting up the store. Thank you for taking the kids when both Travis and I need to work, we are especially grateful to have you nearby and know that the kids are enjoying their time with family. Thank you to my children, Emery and Levi for tagging along when things aren’t as fun for little kids and without knowing it being the reason for all of this. And last but certainly not in the least, thank you to my husband, Travis for believing in me and supporting my dream. Thank you for helping with the endless to do list and picking up where my time is now stretched. I pray I make you all proud.
Now please excuse me while I go wipe my face from all these tears and now have another thing to remember to wear waterproof mascara today!