Gracie's Miracle

Gracie's Miracle
Our beautiful model Tots

Friday, May 14, 2010

The Escondido Street Fair

Well, today is Friday and the beginning of the weekend. Yeah!!! Tomorrow is Prom for my Son, who is a senior at San Marcos High School. Wow, it seems like yesterday that I was firmly telling him to hold my hand as we crossed the street. Where has all of the time gone? Its going to be a very hectic weekend, but one that I'm looking forward to. Saturday we will be spending the day making sure that our children have a memory to last a lifetime. With the dramas of today's teens, hopefully it will be a good memory. Then on to Sunday........Sunday we will be setting up a booth in beautiful Escondido for the Spring Escondido Street Fair. It is suppose to be huge! 60,000 people are suppose to be in attendence. I can't wait! I went to the Carlsbad one a couple of weeks ago and it was phenominal. We will be there from 10am to 6pm, or whenever it ends. I can't wait to start getting Gracie's Miracle out to the public. I've had so much positive feedback that I just know that everyone who gets the chance to use it will love it. I will be out there with Christi and Taylor from Pure Country Pet Boutique who have a clothes and collar line that are to die for, but definitely affordable. They have been such a tremendous support to me and my brand new company, and I'm so thankful to them for letting me be a part of them during these festivals and street fairs. So, if you all get a chance, head on down or up, depending on where you're coming from, to the Escondido Street Fair on Sunday May 16, 2010. We would love to see your there. Lots of booths with lots of goodys and lots of yummy bad for you food. What more could you ask for?

Sunday, May 2, 2010

The Carlsbad Street Fair

So, today was another beautiful day in sunny Southern California. We started off our day going to church where we had a guest speaker whose name was Nazareth. He is a christian comedian and absolutely hilarious. He had the church rolling on the ground laughing from start to finish. What a perfect way to start the day.

After church, we went to brunch with Mom at IHOP and got in some much needed visiting time with her. I've been so busy lately that we haven't had much time to spend with each other. It was so beautiful today with perfect temperatures outside that we decided to head out to a street fair on the coast in Carlsbad. Just Mom, Me, Ben, and Spidey.

I was really wanting to go there because in a couple of weeks we will be vendors at the Escondido street fair and I was kind of wondering what it was going to be like. When we got there I was shocked to see the crowds. I was told that anywhere from 60,000 to 70,000 people would attend this street fair, and from what I could see, they were all there. So many booths with so many nifty things. I would say that it was almost better than the Del Mar Fair as far as the shopping part of it goes. I don't know what got into me, but lately I've gone into this phase of collecting long deep purses. The main reason is that I am able to shove Spidey in them and take him wherever I go. They really come in handy when I am doing a show because I can have him attached to me and not worry about whether or not he's going to get stepped on if he were on the ground. This street fair had a gagillion (don't think that's a word, but it's Devon speak) long deep purses (and before you say it or think it Christi, "that's what she said"). My Mom was in a spoiling mood today, and although I get frusterated with her spending anything on me, I do appreciate everything she does. She bought me a few purses that I fell in love with. One of them was a long and deep tan canvas one.

Another was a colorful reverseable one. And one was red with shiney pretties on it. I couldn't resist a soft little black and white fluffy blanket for Spidey to lay in while he was laying in the purse slung over my shoulder.

We were only there for not quite 2 hours, but my feet were killing me. We were rushing through to try to see all of the booths before it closed, so we did a lot of fast walking in that 1 3/4 hour. It seemed like everybody turned out with their family and there dogs. There were so many dogs out there, that it almost looked like a dog street fair. By the end of our time there I was thoroughly exhausted.

I so much enjoyed my day today, but I have to say, that the best part was spending time with my Mom. She is the most wonderful person anyone could ever meet and I really don't know why God felt that I deserved to have such a wonderful woman in my life.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Another Beautiful Day In Sunny California

So, today was the day that we did the Farmer's Market. My morning started off a little rough because other than having to wake up at 6am, Charlie Brown my 12 year old poodle, got a wild hair up his butt that he needed to go with me. As a matter of fact he was adament about it. He shot out of the house like a bat at of hell while I was dragging Tiana, one of my rescued chihuahuas, by her leash. Spidey, my little mischeif maker, decided to make a run for it when he saw his opportunity, because he too was intent on getting to the parking lot to catch his ride. This is all happening at 6:45 in the morning and I was trying desparately to not raise my voice and wake up the neighbors in the process. It turns out that today was the condo association's community garage sale, so the parking lot was like Grand Central Station, and I was terrified that one or both of my 2 hard headed 4-legged children were going to be smooshed by one of the many cars pulling in and out of our parking lot. As I was runnig up to the parking lot to catch my 2 wayward mutts I dropped the backpack I had on my back and spilled the cart carrying things I needed for the Farmer's Market, while tugging Tiana along the whole time. I'd be darned if I was going to let her leash go and have 3 dogs on the loose. I scurried out to the parking lot with my hands flying in the air to ward off the two approaching vehicles, and as I skidded to a hault with Tiana in tow, looking like a madwoman to the drivers of the cars, I scanned the lot to see my 2 little bad boys sitting on the grass watching the whole incident play out. I guess they were smarter than I thought. Needless to say, no longer was I tired because of waking up so early. As a matter of fact, it got the adrenaline pumping. I took Charlie Brown back down to the house telling him that he was not able to go because he was being punnished for being such a bad doggy and also being a bad role model for Spidey. Course, I really didn't plan on bringing him in the first place, but that's okay, he didn't need to know that.
After my little parking lot mishap, we headed to the Farmer's Market. I have to say that it was kind of cool actually setting up our booth. It was a little tough in the beginning because all of my letters for the Gracie's Miracle sign was all mixed up, but once I was able to separate the ones out that I needed, it seemed to go much smoother after that. As I said in my previous blog, this Farmer's Market was a way to get our toes wet in the vendor scene before taking on a big street festival of 60,000. I enjoyed the people at the Farmer's Market. Everyone from the other vendors to the lady who heads it all up to the people who came shopping at the Farmer's Market were really nice and made it an enjoyable experience. I can't say that it is the venue that we would be interested in doing again, because there is so much time and setup that goes into putting up the booth, but it did give us an idea of how it will play out for the booths that we will be puting up in the future. We got to bask in the sun with our little poochies, while meeting some incredibly nice people. All in all, it was a nice experience.
After the Farmer's Market I came home to finally relax and catch up with some housework that I had fallen behind in. Life has been so hectic with starting Gracie's Miracle that it's been tougher keeping up with my domestic duties. Oh well, a little clutter never killed anyone.
I have a new product that I can't wait to release and it's almost ready to go on the market. It's called Gracie's Miracle moisturizing paw pad spray. My Mom gave it a try today, and loved it. She said that it would be great for humans. My goal is to have all of my product safe and natural, yet appealing at the same time, for pets and humans. I know there have been many products that I have purchased for my pets that when I got them home to use, they either smelled horrible, or smelled like they tasted horrible and I thought at the time,"why would I make my poor pet suffer through something that I couldn't stomach."
So, another day has come to an end and I feel myself getting drowsy, but there is still so much going on in my head that I know needs to be done. I finally am excited for the next day to arrive, just so I can get back to working on this fantastic business that God has blessed us with.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Okay, so blogging is not as easy as I thought it was going to be

I really thought that I would be much better with this blogging thing, but as it turns out, its time consuming, and time is short when you are starting a new business. We just got our calendar in sinc to do street fairs, festivals, pet expos, and wholesale pet trade shows. Its really exciting finding something that you are passionate about and going the distance to make your dreams come true. Even the grunt work (ie: the many hours of research, the cooking of recipes, and the filling of bottles, and many more things that would take too long to list) I've become passionate about. It's amazing the difference in one's attitude when they do something they are passionate about.

I was raised in the sportfishing community which is something I do enjoy. I still work for my parents and I thoroughly enjoy the fishing season and the customers who come with it. One of the highlights of the year for me is working the Fred Hall Fishing, Sport, and Boat Show in Long Beach California. But, I've come to find out that there is a big difference between enjoying something and being passionate about something. All I think about is what ingredients I can put in my next product that is all natural and good for pets. I want to make a difference! My true passion has always been animals. Now don't get me wrong, even though my family might argue with me on this, my human children and my husband definitely come first, and that is how God meant it to be. But, I was one of those people that he gave the gift of wanting to care for His 4 legged creations.

Gracie's Miracle Breath and Tooth Decay Spray is a relatively new product out on the market. So, although there has been plenty of testing beforehand, the public is just now getting started in on using it. I got my first testimonial from a lady who was at the Pet Expo in Orange County, and after one week she's had tremendous results. I can't tell you the feeling you get when someone else, who doesn't have personal ties with you, believes in something that you believe in. That, honestly, made my week.

We did the Orange County Pet Expo a couple of weeks ago and it turned out to be a successful one for us, as far as getting our name out there. Tomorrow we are going to give Scripps Ranch Farmer's Market a try. The only drawbacks that I can see is that I have to wake up at 6 am and there is a lot of set up for only four hours of having a booth up. This is a learning experience for both me and my friend, Christi, with Pure Country Pet Boutique. We've kind of teamed up when doing shows because we work well together and our products go well together. This is new for her, in the fact, that she's not done too many retail shows or events. The main reason is because she does mostly wholesale. She is starting up the retail side of her business for her daughter, Taylor, to take over, because Taylor is just a natural for that aspect of her business. I'm really looking forward to this Farmer's Market because it will be a training experience for us. But the real fun is going to the be the wholesale shows. I can't wait!!!!!!!

Well, I'm going to sign off for now, because there is entirely too much fun going on around me and blogging is almost impossible to do under those circumstances. Ok, so I will really, really, really try to post another blog in the next couple of days for those who are actually looking for the next one.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

In The Beginning

I was told by my close friend that when starting a new business, I must also start a blog. And seeing as I would trust her with my life, I figure, why not trust her on this. As a matter of fact, this new business has happened because of her. I am truly thankful for her love and support, and all the time and effort that she gave up to help me succeed. So Christi, this goes out to you.
I never had the thought to start my own business. I was always just content to work for others and let my husband, Rob, be the business owner. He was the go getter and the entrepreneur and on top of those titles he is also a painting contractor. He has always been a great provider, so I never had the itch to start something on my own (and when I say on my own, I mean taking the initiative to make a dream move forward, because starting a business, usually requires the support of others). In the past couple of years the economy has been in a decline and my husband's businesses have suffered, but he still made it happen with all of his hard work. A few months back he was in an a car accident that physically took its toll on him and made it almost impossible for him to continue with his painting business. And its because of this accident that I knew I had to figure out a way to help alleviate all of the burdens that were weighing him down. Not to mention, my friend Christi was heading to Baltimore to do a pet show for her business and I was jealous, because I wanted to go. I love trade shows! Especially ones that involve pets. And that's what started the fire that would turn into "Gracie's Miracle".
I wouldn't say that I am unmotivated, but to be honest all I have been able to think of for the past 18 years was how to keep up with our 7 kids. Our oldest is 27 and our youngest is 5, so you can imagine that life has been hectic. Lately, though, things have slowed down in that department. Most of them are grown or are in their teens and all that is left is our little 5 year old Ben. I can finally breathe a little. After all of those years, though, of being a sold out devoted mom, I feel that I forgot how to be creative and inventive, and that's where Christi stepped in. I was introduced to Christi by a very close and dear friend to me, Coppi, who has been telling me for years that I reminded her of her friend Christi. I always just laughed and shrugged it off, because she lived in Oregon and I lived in California, and the probability of me ever meeting Christi was nil as far as I was concerned. Well, it just so happens that Christi moved to California a couple of years ago, and after a year and a half of Coppi throwing out little hints to me of meeting Christi, we find out that Christi only lives a few miles down the road from me and that our kids go to the same high school. Talk about coincidences (I like to call it part of God's plan)! Well, Coppi, basically sets us up on a blind date, and what happens next is the beginning of a new chapter in my life. She has inspired me and taught me that there still is some creativity buried down inside of me, and that all I needed to do was go after something I was passionate about. For me, outside of God and my family, I am passionate about my pets. And that was the common thread that bound me and Christi together, not to mention our love for wine. Haha.
So, here I am now on a journey that I would never have even considered 6 months ago, but because someone else believed in me and made me believe in myself, I am starting a business that I am passionate about. And this is the beginning of Gracie's Miracle. Stay tuned, because in the coming days, weeks, months, and years I am going to bring you, the reader, on this journey with me of starting a new business, balancing family life, friendships and new adventures.