What were the odds?

Julia is my youngest child. She is 8 1/2 years old today. She is very active, strong willed, stubborn and sassy. But she still holds my hand in public, loves to cuddle, is so creative and can be super sweet… when she wants to be!

Julia has been wanting roller blades for weeks and weeks. Every day she would ask me to take her to the store to buy her roller blades. I kept thinking she would give up and forget about them. But she didn’t. Every day she would ask. Finally, I told her I was most definitely NOT buying her roller blades for full price at the store, they were too expensive. But I said I would take her to Good Will to look one day when we had time. Ok… I have to be honest here, I only told her that to appease her. I knew full well the odds of them having roller blades in her size at Good Will were slim to none, which was fine, she really didn’t NEED roller blades.

We had some free time after school supply shopping one day so Julia asked if we could go to Good Will. I reluctantly said yes. I told her not to get her hopes up, that they probably would not have roller blades and not to be upset if there weren’t any. She told me she was sure they would have them. We walked into the store, Julia was beaming with anticipation. She asked me where the roller blade section was. I told her to check by the shoes. Down the shoe aisle we went. All the way down the aisle. And there, at the very end, on the bottom shelf was one pair of roller blades… pink and grey… just about her size. I couldn’t believe it! What were the odds? She grabbed them and immediately sat down on the floor, threw off her shoes, put on the roller blades and… they fit! Best of all they looked almost brand new and only cost $6.99.

Julia's rollerblades!

She rolled up and down the aisle, thankfully there weren’t a lot of people in the store! I eventually got her to take them off, we took them up to the counter, paid and headed home. As soon as she got in the door she put on her new roller blades and bike helmet, and off she skated to the neighbor’s house.

Here she is at her friend’s house. Their garage is so clean. Mine does not look like that at all.
Julia and friend

Here she is walking our yorkie, Molly.
Julia and Molly

Although most of the walk looked like this:
Julia and Molly 2

Every day Julia skates around in her roller blades. That just might be the best $6.99 I have ever spent on that child! Our next investment will be knee and elbow pads. Maybe we need to make a trip back to Good Will! ūüėČ

Just when you think you have things all planned out…

…the plan changes. This¬†is¬†how¬†I became the owner of¬†The Yum-Yum Shoppe.

When my youngest child started kindergarten I began¬†thinking¬†about what I wanted to be¬†when I “grew up”.¬† After high school I attended MidAmerica Nazarene University (it was actually just a college back then, that shows my age, haha). I finished all my coursework in Elementary Education, except for my student teaching. By that time I was married and had two babies, Caleb was one and Abby was a newborn.¬†I always knew I wanted to be a stay at home mom so I didn’t finish my degree. My husband graduated from MNU, got a job, we moved to Lawrence and I became a stay at home mom like I always wanted!

Fast forward¬†a few years¬†(maybe a few more than a few) and add four more kids (Rachel, Nate, Lydia and Julia)…¬†who were all now in school.¬† I know, I skipped a big chunk of time here¬†but that will have to¬†wait for another post.¬† With all the kids in school it was just time for me to go back and get a degree…¬†in … something.¬† I had no idea what.¬† I researched several different programs that I thought might be interesting.¬† Sonography, polysomnography, social work and radiological technology. They all required going back to school for three or four years.¬†UGH. I just didn’t want to spend that much time in school. Then one afternoon I was researching nursing degrees online and found an accelerated nursing program at where else but my alma mater, MNU! One year.¬† Perfect!¬† I only needed a few pre-requisites¬†that¬†I could¬†take¬†at a Community College.¬† Rigorous curriculum but done in less than two years total. YES!¬† I enrolled in school, sent transcripts, met with a counselor, planned my schedule and prepared the kids for the upcoming crazy schedule that would be ahead of us.¬† I was ready.¬† I FINALLY knew what I was going to¬†be when I grew up.¬† A NURSE!¬† Such a relief. I had it all planned out.

A week or so later I received an email from my dear friend Talitha.¬† She sent it to a small group of old good friends, saying she¬†was seriously considering selling The Yum-Yum Shoppe. Now I¬†had been¬†around the Yum from the beginning.¬† I met Talitha in Mother’s Of PreSchoolers (MOPS) back when our older kiddos were toddlers.¬† She started making¬†those sweet¬†body treats in her kitchen with another friend, and I kind of wanted to be a part of it somehow. ¬†I loved the products,¬†but the timing just wasn’t right back then. I had four or five kids at the time.¬† Maybe four and pregnant with # five??¬† At some point along the way I told Talitha if she ever decided to add consultants that I would be interested. Years later, in 2011 I became a “peddler of the Yum” and¬†helped¬†Talitha with some local vendor events and sales.¬†¬†With all the kids’ activities keeping me busy (mostly taxi driving them around here and there) it was difficult to add one more thing to my plate.¬† “Peddling” was pushed to the back burner. The timing, once again, just wasn’t right.

Back to Talitha’s email.¬†As soon as I read that email I just felt like I wanted to be the one to carry on The Yum-Yum Shoppe.¬† My kids were older and more self-sufficient. I could do this. But I had just enrolled in school.¬† I KNEW I was going to go back to school to be a nurse, right?¬† I had a plan. On the other hand how could I pass up this opportunity to be a part of something I had always wanted to be involved in?¬† I weighed all my options, prayed about it and discussed all the pros and cons with my husband. He gave me some wise advice. He said if I didn’t give¬†The Yum-Yum Shoppe¬†a try I would always regret it.¬† I would always wonder “what if??”. He was right.

A few short weeks later I became the new owner of The Yum-Yum Shoppe!¬† You know, I have always been the type of person¬†who can¬†recreate what someone else has already created.¬† Whether it be something I am sewing or cooking or crafting. I’m not all that creative on my own, but I can take what someone else has¬†made and make it again.¬† Talitha is innovative and creative.¬† She developed the most¬†wonderful recipes for yummy, delicious body products and all I have to do is recreate her creations. It worked out perfectly.

Becoming the owner of The Yum-Yum Shoppe wasn’t my plan.¬† I had planned to go back to school to be a nurse.¬† But this plan, God’s plan, is so much better than MY plan.

I am so thankful for this opportunity to make sweet body treats for you!