I started this year with a regular job. Then the pandemic happened, and I found myself laid off, then unemployed.
So, I turned a small fundraiser for Canada’s National Axe Throwing Team into an actual business. (with the blessing of the team) Still, a portion of the sales from blends is put aside to support Nova Lumberjacks Society. (a non-profit dedicated to supporting and promoting timbersports and timbersport athletes) I am grateful for the NLS and our Canadian Team.
I am grateful to the team at Alderney Landing Farmers' Market (both in person and online) for supporting and helping me to build this business and follow my passion for connecting people with skills and ingredients to make some amazing meals. The experience of having a "home", in that market, has helped me to give consistency to my customers (even though I've moved around a bit) and a weekly connection to some of the nicest, smartest and generous vendors whose advice and support have meant a lot.
To the many retailers who are carrying my products, your support means the world to me. I just hope for the day when I can do in-store demos and in-person Q and A for people to taste the blends and learn how easy it is to cook a meal that the family will all love, all while stretching your dollar.
Most of all, I am grateful for the customers, who, despite my having moved around a little, have made the effort to find my little stall, find my products in the online store and have found my own online store to do their shopping. Without your support, suggestions, and enthusiasm, this would have been a more difficult year.
This past year has been full of challenges, tears, the loss of loved friends and family through both the pandemic and other tragedies that have befallen our province. There's no doubt that the feelings and experiences of 2020 will ripple through a generation.
Tucked in with the sadness, anger, and helplessness is a nugget of gratitude and joy. We saw support for our frontline workers on all fronts; we saw a province come together in the Nova Scotia Strong movement; we saw an increase in "pay it forward" random acts of kindness and we saw the WORLD come together to show Zac Connolly what an amazing world he lived in, though his time here was far too short. (see Zac's Virtual World on FB).
In the end, I'm left thinking that 2020 was a lesson in the impermanence of those things we thought were solid. It offered us the opportunity to re-evaluate our work/life balance and to look inward to see what we're passionate about. For some, it was cooking and baking, for others, it was art, for others still, it was finding alternative ways to connect, through games, online groups, zoom and more. In the end, I am left with gratitude.
I look forward to "talking food" with you and connecting you with the best quality spices/dried herbs/blends/rubs and essentials when restrictions allow.
Until then, be well and stay safe.