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Small Business: Checking In During The New Normal

This season, we’re taking extra care to check in on friends, family, and the overall health of our community. We reached out to a few of our local small businesses to see how they’re doing during these unprecedented times. 

small business

A Conversation With Our Local Small Businesses

Thanks so much for sharing your experiences with us! We know that times are tough and we’re glad that you’ve taken a moment to chat with us. These past few months have been a rollercoaster. How are you doing so far?

small business, anjoul bliss
Mariel of Anjoul Soaps

Mariel of Anjoul Soaps: We are lucky this is an online business so things haven’t changed much other than some increased shipping times for supplies. We have been ordering ahead and adapting to the different pace.

Merrilee of Knead & Nod: Fortunately for us, business hasn’t changed much.  I’m lucky to be able to fully operate our business by myself since the foundation of my business is through online sales. Our company is still fairly new and relatively small, so I’ve been able to keep up with the workload despite being quarantined at home with two small kids – usually late evening and weekend work. I have learned to give my vendors enough lead time as their warehouses could run slower now and I do tons of waving and smiling at the mail carriers each day when they pick up packages at the front door. They are heroes of our business since our packages are shipped everywhere. OH! And we’ve also been employing tons of hand washing and sanitizing everyday! 

Lupita of The Cookie Couture: My business has changed in the last 6 months a lot because I started working at a school every day of the week and I couldn’t find the time to continue selling cookies from home. So, I continued to work on my Youtube Channel and that has been slowly growing every day. However, Youtube had to make some changes that affected small channels like mine. I have still been posting videos and I’m hoping it will be back to normal soon especially because earning revenue through Youtube takes a lot of time and effort. However, I know the world needs to be informed and I am happy to have a platform where everyone can stay informed, can continue watching their church’s services, and can find useful tools for guided teaching at home, and where you can find tutorials to do so many things at home. I am so happy to be part of this community and grateful for my subscribers who have been watching my videos. I am most of all happy because I am sharing my knowledge and experiences from the cookie decorating world.

Thinking About The Future Of Business

With everything going on right now, this has all been very refreshing to hear. We also have been learning to adapt to this new normal and have been finding ways to make it our own. Whether it be like Lupita and sharpening up our skills in other avenues or simply taking the time to treat ourselves a little and craft with the family. In terms of the future of your businesses, what has been going through your mind?

small business, knead & nod
Merrilee of Knead & Nod

Mariel: In terms of the future, we feel positive about continuing to take care of our customers with the best quality products, and we hope that things will get back to normal soon for us and all our fellow small business owners.

Merrilee: We do worry about the unknown but we’re remaining optimistic. Sales have picked up slightly because our business offers a unique connection that is safely shipped through the mail and I think people are really longing for connection and a little joy right now. That’s always been our vision since day one (to ship gifts of gratitude and joy) and it remains the same through this crisis.

Lupita: Now that summer is coming and I won’t be working at the school and I am planning on restarting my cookie sales on Etsy. I think that it will be a good time to start selling cookies again. Now that a lot of kids are home, moms are more busy than ever and having cookies shipped to their homes will be a good source of help for them!

It will be good for the channel too! I notice that a good percentage of people have more time to learn new things now and that can help them to have their own successful side business. I’m more than happy to inspire someone to start a home based business that will help them to get some extra income during these difficult times.

Staying Positive In A Time Of Coronavirus

I think our communities are very lucky to be surrounded by such positivity! Do you have any words of advice for our readers who may be struggling during this time? Or if you had a message that you wanted to help spread, we’re all ears!

small business, the cookie couture
Lupita of The Cookie Couture

Mariel: In terms of the future, we feel positive about continuing to take care of our customers with the best quality products, and we hope that things will get back to normal soon for us and all our fellow small business owners.

Merrilee: It’s tough right now and we hurt for those hurting. Everyone has different circumstances they’re dealing with but I think remembering your “why” and the roots of your business will help keep you grounded during this difficult time.

I’m also in awe of the inventiveness of businesses around my local area. This has caused businesses to get creative – anywhere from collaborations, to porch drop-offs, to curations of survival kits.  Local is key right now, so nurture your local community as much as you can. We all need each other right now!

Lupita: In my experience, it’s during the most difficult times in my life where I find the most blessings and where I have grown the most as a person. I encourage all of you to continue working on fulfilling your goals in life while being flexible and creative using the resources that you have at hand. My faith and my family has played a big role in finding my blessings during hard times and I am so grateful for that.

Paper Mart & Supporting Local

Throughout the years, we’ve dedicated ourselves to supporting and serving our local communities. Whether it be through charitable acts like donations on behalf of our employees or through showcasing the businesses that use our packaging products, we are happy to express our support and encourage you to do the same. 

These images are courtesy of Anjoul Bliss, Knead & Nod, and The Cookie Couture. If you want to follow along with their beautiful creations, check out their websites and shop!

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