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random thoughts - the juice blog.

Local. What does it mean?

19 April, 2013 2 comments Leave a comment

Good morning everyone, 

 

Local. What does that mean? Does is mean I support only one specific “type” of local business? Does it mean I should support only local “family businesses”? Or does it mean that I only support small local businesses within MY town and not the town over? Does it mean it is cool to support a local family farmer but not a local family distributor?

 

While the heart is in the right place, frankly, I am weary of trying to figure it all out. I believe that as a community we take a lot of pride in supporting our local businesses. It is a part of why I love Nashville and the surrounding cities.

 

We are a family-owned business that loves this place. We are making a product that we believe in wholeheartedly– that many Nashvillians believe in. But, this morning I have a heavy heart & some things to say. I hope it sparks a conversation. I hope it creates some thought.

 

A few weeks ago, we left the West Nashville Farmer’s Market. We left without making a big deal or smearing anyone’s name. We didn’t have a plan. And we didn’t know how or where we would be able to sell our product.

 

When we left corporate America, we did so with the desire to build something peaceful and that would allow us to give something back.  Money is not the driving force of our business. 

 

We are not perfect people – and our customers know we make mistakes. But, we have made a commitment and a promise to our daughter, to each other, and you to give nothing but honesty & integrity.  

 

Do you want the real reason we left the Farmer’s Market?

People that we consider our friends were treated poorly in a public way on Facebook.

No politics. No deep-rooted agenda. That’s it.

 

This was not a battle for us about “producers only” vs. “resellers”. It was about taking a stand to protect our friends and the true sense of community.  

 

We originally joined the Farmers' Markets as a way to test our brand & our product.  What we did not count on was being welcomed into a tight–knit family of entrepreneurs – farmer’s, bakers & artists of their craft. People that celebrated the news of a baby’s birth and cried together when someone’s loved one passed.  People that showed us the best way to set up our tents and give us warm hugs every single time they saw us.

 

The vendors taught us how to be good to our customers and warned us what mistakes to try and avoid.  They taught us how to be genuine and to value the uniqueness that each other’s product offered.  They helped create the soul in “juice. Nashville.” But, most important, they showed us that TRUE community was not a place that existed only in the past. It was alive and well in our own town.

 

This idea of “community” is strong and it is powerful. It means that even if you are similar to me – there is room to support and nurture each other’s growth and progress.  But, in a healthy family there has to be a mutual desire for this to happen. If an issue comes up, it is the family’s responsibility to work through the conflict with love and respect. But, this has to be a mutual goal.  Each of us has a right to our own perspective and thought. We each have the right to stand up for our own personal beliefs.   I believe this is a good thing and ultimately it will allow the idea of community to live on.

 

We have a beautiful gift here in Nashville. – and when I say “Nashville” I mean “all of us”  – Brentwood, Franklin, Green Hills, Murfreesboro, 12 South, West End, East Nashville, Donelson, Hendersonville, Antioch, Spring Hill etc. (You know who you are!)

 

All things local are amazing and unique. We should be proud of ALL of our small businesses and celebrate when one of our own grows, expands and is able to show the world the potential of this city! The more support we show this idea of community – the better off we will all be.  More jobs, more celebrations, more money to fuel our entire local community in Middle Tennessee, our state, and ultimately our country.

 

I am proud that we are in a place that is gaining worldwide attention. And even more proud that some of these larger businesses in our town (and country!) have started in OUR Farmer’s Markets.  I hope that we can focus on what REALLY matters and that the common thread that holds us all together - the desire to make a community that we all can be proud to call “home.”

 

Sending love to you all and hope to see you all at the Farmer’s Markets this weekend.

 

All the Best,

Stephanie 

day 5 and beyond!

25 March, 2013 0 comments Leave a comment

Hey guys, 

So, I know many of you are sitting on the edge of your seats - anxiously waiting for my final thoughts about my cleanse.

Ok..maybe not.  But, I am here to tell you anyway! 

I finished my cleanse last Friday evening. I can honestly say, it was the best cleanse experience I have ever had. My mind was clearer, energy through the roof, and I wasn't hungry. Over the 5 days, I became acutely aware of everything I was giving my body.  I had not realized how mindlessly I select food in the rush of life. 

Often times, you guys ask me for advice on how to complete the cleanse. But, I had not realized how much YOU have taught me. During this cleanse, I kept your feedback and thoughts in mind. I really believe that made all the difference. I want to share a few "simple tips" that helped me to have a great experience. 

 

1. Don't force yourself to drink a blend you do not like. Trust me, human nature will kick in and you will be less likely to stay the course. Yes.. Beets are incredibly good for you. But, if they are not your "thing" you are asking for trouble. The cleanse has to be a process that is enjoyable. Find an alternate blend that will give you the health benefits your body needs. 

2. Listen to your body! If you are not hungry, don't force it. Use the cleanse time to recommit to listening to your body's cues. 

3. Get creative. Drink your juice in a glass, add some ice cubes, grab a straw, mix in some almond milk. The options are endless. 

4. An insulated bag with a few ice packs is really helpful to make sure cold juice is ready to go. 

5. Be prepared to drink juice for the days following the cleanse. Slowly ease back into eating quality solid foods. 

6. As you are cleansing, start preparing for life "after the cleanse." Your body is going to primed, pumped and ready for new choices. This is the time to retire the processed foods and stock up on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, all the good stuff. 

7. Carry water with you at all times - super important! 

 

I am looking forward to my next cleanse in the next few weeks! Do you guys have any ideas or suggestions you would like to share? Let's hear them! 

 

Take care, 

Stephanie 

 

 

oh yeah. My body is talking to me. Day 2 out of 5.

12 March, 2013 0 comments Leave a comment

Hey guys, 

 

I am coming near the end of Day 2, so I thought I would let you know how I am doing. Overall, not too shabby. I feel pretty good. During the day I am usually so busy that I don't have much time to think. The night is when I feel the pull towards old habits. Wes and I frequently eat dinner out as a way to hang out and relax. So, truth be told, that has been the hardest part of my 5 day journey so far.

 

I am a creature of habit - I eat at the same places, I wear the same type of clothes, I watch the same tv shows (I know .. very exciting).

 

I really like the comfort of a routine .. but as I am going through this process, I am re-evaluating what habits are good and which ones... not so good. Over the next few days, I am going to challenge myself to adopt a healthier habit. Yes.. I said just "one ".

 

I find that if I make broad proclamations " I am going to hit the gym everyday! I am going to lose 30 pounds! I am going to become an accomplished chef!" - it usualy doesn't end well. (Can anyone say "New Year's Resolution"?) 

 

So, this week I will find one new habit and leave one old habit behind. Wish me luck! 

 

Now.. on to a few practices that I have adopted during my cleanse: 

 

1. Starting the day with "Oil Pulling" - I know it sounds weird, but I swear by it. Find the best cold-pressed coconut oil you can find and swish 1 tablespoon of it in your mouth for about 20 minutes. This Ayurvedic practice pulls toxins from your system (plus, you will be ah-mazed at how clean it gets your mouth) 

I enjoyed reading our friend Mary Crimmins' blog about the ritual. While you are there, check out her post about her 5 day cleanse experience (she has great recipe ideas listed too!) 

http://marycrimmins.com/what-is-oil-pulling/  

http://marycrimmins.com/5-day-juice-fast-prep/

 

 

2. Before bedtime, I drink a glass of warm filtered water with a few teaspoons of Bragg's Apple Cider Vinegar, and a touch of raw honey. This combo helps the body maintain proper alkalinity levels and is highly cleansing. A nice warm way to end the day.  

 

3. I have developed a new love of mixing "almond!" with the other juice blends. "whoa." takes on a creamy, yummy quality when mixed with the almond milk. 

 

4. I am listening to my body. If I am full from a juice, I am not forcing myself to drink every drop. But, if I am hungry.. I grab more juice.

 

Well, that's all for today. I am looking forward to checking in with you guys soon!

 

I would love to hear how you guys are doing out there!

 

Take care, 

Stephanie 

 

a little (pre) spring cleaning.

10 March, 2013 1 comments Leave a comment

Hey everyone, 

 

The human brain is a funny thing. It is remarkable in it's ability to hold on to memories - both good and bad. But, it also allows us to have selective "forgetfulness". Not too long ago, I was in the hospital, desperate for an answer to my illness and pain. Once I found the answer in juicing - it motivated me to not only adopt juicing into my daily life.. but it motivated my husband and I to start a business that would help others realize that simple choices - like adding juice to your daily life - really make a huge difference.

But, truth be told.... my body has been talking to me.. and I have NOT been listening. 

I have poured myself into nurturing the business - at the expense of my own personal needs. It happened so easily.  Bad food choices .. crazy work hours...  and the gym? Nah, I am too tired..  I just don't have time.

Even the best personal trainers (or juice company owners), have the same decisions to make each day. No one is immune from it - including me. These decisions can catch up to you pretty fast.

So, I have decided...  it is time to reset! 

Tomorrow, I will be starting a 5 day cleanse. This will be a time for reflection and a renewal of my commitment to myself. I am pretty excited about it. Over the week, I will "pop-in", share my progress, and answer any questions you guys might have for me. This will also be a time for me to test new blends and hopefully find new ideas to share with you. 

It is kind of cool to know that this 5 day commitment will allow me to become a better, stronger, healthier person. And that is an exhilarating thought! I am looking forward to sharing this mini-adventure with you all. 

Be sure to come by and chat. Are you starting a cleanse this week too? Don't be shy.. this is your space to share as well! 

 

Let's do this!

 

Talk soon, 

Stephanie 

 

 

a simple thank you.

22 December, 2012 0 comments Leave a comment

Good morning Nashville :)

 

When Wes and I started "juice." in 2011 we really had no idea where the road would take us. I will never forget the moment I met with my boss and announced that I was leaving to start my own business. People including my friends and family thought I had finally lost my mind. Why in the world would I seemingly throw it all away.. everything that I worked so hard for...working for one of the most respected corporations in the world.. the weekly paycheck.. the health insurance.. essentially our future.. all for ... juice? I had my nagging insecurities.. what if no one liked it? Am I in over my head?

Although I had all of these (annoying) thoughts, I felt so liberated and free that day. For the first time in my life, I made a decision for me. A decision to take a chance and to do something that could make a difference - not only for my family's future.. but for our community. I have shared my story with many of you. I started juicing because I was sick. Not too be overly dramatic.. but so sick that my husband and I thought I was not going to make it. Facing illness has a way of moving life into sharp perspective in many ways. juice saved me on so many levels, the obvious impact was my health. But, it goes even deeper, it inspired me to actually choose my own adventure -  to take a chance at creating something that will mean something for others. To not automatically walk down the "recommended" path - but to take a risk and actually love what I do every day.

So, basically, we drained our savings account, I quit my corporate job (Wes quit his full time gig 2 months ago!), started hauling cases and cases of fruits and vegetables in Wes' pickup, went from paid vacation to no vacation, working 40 hour weeks to 70 hour weeks.... and couldn't be happier.  Isn't life strange? 

I wanted to share this with you because you are a huge part of our story. It is easy to support a business that has an established brand and a fancy store front. But, you guys took a chance on us. You came out to the Farmer's Markets, you ordered online, you talked to us on Twitter and Facebook. For this, we will forever be thankful. 

We are a family business. Our team is our family. You are our family. We hope that we can help inspire you to choose your own adventure. Each of our juices have a story (they are kind of like our kids in a way). I hope that you love them as much as we love making them for you. 

Well, off to the Farmer's Markets :)

Wishing you and yours a safe, happy, and healthy holiday! 

 

Yours in juice, 

 Stephanie 

 

 

 

 

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