Five Years of Fun
It’s hard to believe we’re celebrating our FIFTH birthday in August! I swear it was just yesterday that my Dad’s jaw dropped when I told him I was leaving my *stable* career at Veterans United to open up a storefront. I’m sure he was secretly SO happy I would be moving my equipment out of his basement. Now that I’m a parent, I can almost understand the level of confusion he had (and the fact that he still supported me even though he thought I was crazy).
This journey hasn’t been an easy one. If I’m being honest, many days I want to quit (like today, our fifth day in a row of Internet struggles....). If I’m being really honest, many days I cry (like today, when I spent six hours trying to get Internet....). Note: The reward and joy the stores bring me far outweigh the tears and the struggles of owning a business! I’ve met so many amazing people and some of my greatest friends at 503 E Nifong Blvd – whether that be shoppers turned friends or employees turned family! I feel so lucky to call this my job, these stores my home, and this community my family.
There’s been many changes throughout the last sixty months. Many that are outward and can be seen in the design of the store, the evolution of our social media (#BLESSED), the products we carry, and the services we offer.
Of course I’m proud of those changes and the growth many of you have seen since our beginning in 2016. However, I think I’m most proud of the growth and change that’s happened behind-the-scenes and within me as a business owner.
When we opened our doors, I was twenty-four years old, a fresh-MBA-graduate falling in love with a boy. I rented a home in my hometown, went to concerts every week, and had nothing to lose. I had taken the “baby” I created and grown it…but the beginning of that journey would look much different than I thought (and looking back, I probably should have trusted my gut a bit more. Ah, youth). You see, when we opened in 2016, I had a business partner - a story for another day. That relationship failed for a number of reasons and the “divorce” as I often refer to it was painful in so many ways.
Tyler and I got married in June 2017 & spent our first six months as newlyweds meeting with attorneys and working through the logistics of going back to sole ownership in the company I had developed – beginning in my parent’s basement. When that was behind us, it was a breath of fresh air. A new life and a new journey (again) for my first baby. The last few years have been BUSY and so much fun! I’m now twenty-nine, a fresh-second-time-mom falling in love with two boys & a teeny little girl. I’m often asked how I do it all…. And the answer is: I don’t. It takes sacrifice in so many ways to make these places happen. For example, Tyler stayed home with the kids on Sunday so I could go knock a few things out with no one in the stores. Last week, my mom kept the kids so Tyler and I could run change out a display. I’m truly so lucky to have the support of my amazing family and friends to keep these stores going. It takes a village and mine is the best!
My team is full of insanely talented women that keep me motivated, inspired, and encouraged - especially on the hard days. We've celebrated graduations, birthdays, babies, turning sixteen, moves across the country, and now even weddings! We've opened a new store together, faced a pandemic, and worked through some major growing pains... It's truly a joy to share life with them -- my kids get bonus aunts & I get to sleep at night knowing I've got the BEST people around me! Speaking of which, we've got some new faces you'll want to come meet soon! Look for some fun intros soon!
A TSR Timeline
2016: Wild Rose (my first business) closed and…..The Southern Rose storefront opened! Yay!
2017: This year was spent focusing on growing our in-store shoppers and creating brand awareness in Columbia (and getting married LOL).
2018: Largely spent on developing an e-commerce presence and working on a site that could handle the scale of our inventory & personalization options (note: we are now on our second overhaul of our website)
2019: Began with the arrival of our son, Knox, and ended with the opening of our expanded baby + kid storefront, Rosebuds! 10/10 do not recommend a new baby and a new store in the same year – I’m still tired.
2020: We can call this year “COVID.” Truly, we had a tremendous year despite the shutdown and so many factors working against businesses. We are so thankful for those of you that placed orders and trusted us with your gifting. We can’t thank you enough!
2021: This year began with the arrival of our daughter, Kramer. A sweet addition + now I can finally think about what a retirement might look like one day – ha!
This maternity leave was much better for me than my maternity leave with Knox. My amazing team took care of business and I could truly focus on my family (THANK YOU) & spend some time soaking in the newness of our girl. As I lay there one day (in all my glory I might add LOL), I realized our upcoming birthday in August meant FIVE years of fun. Woah. That milestone hits different than I expected. They say (although, I’m not really sure who ‘they’ is) that the first five years are “survival.” Boy, do I feel that to my core. Many businesses don’t hit the five-year milestone and after the craziness of 2020, I feel DOUBLY blessed to be open and celebrating with all of our friends and family that made it happen!
We’ve got some big plans for our birthday weekend (August 20 & 21). We sure hope you’ll join us (RSVP here)! We’ve got over $500 in prizes to giveaway – and all you have to do is make a purchase (online or in-store) to be entered! That’s it. We’ve also got a TON of new items launching that weekend (in-store first & online 8/22). It’s really the most excited I’ve been about an event at the store before – eeeek! Mark your calendars here and stay up-to-date on the weekend’s fun. We’ll post more updates in the event soon!
See you in the shops soon, friends! If you read this far in the blog... you get a few sneak peeks at some items launching in-store that weekend! I can't thank my friends for making this photoshoot happen. Yay for fun balloons from Airmagination & great photos (as always) from Laura Rowe! Enjoy!