Collectively this has been a long time coming. A vision for fresh, convenient options in the St. Croix River Valley has been something we have been dreaming up and working towards for longer than either of us would like to admit. Our separate visions came together as things in our world seemed to split during the pandemic. We realized that convenient, fresh, wellness boosting options, and a soul that helps support and build our community is something we were craving. We decided on the name The Goodery because it is much more than offering product - it is about Doing Good, Spreading Good and being Good (as good as we can).
Sometimes I joke that I am a serial small business starter. I LOVE to create something from the ground up. Putting in the sweat (and often tears) to see it come to life is incredibly rewarding for me. My career started at the corporate level - I worked for many years at Best Buy Corp holding roles in Supply Chain, Purchasing and in Marketing. There were even a couple years that I worked Internationally in China, Turkey and Mexico City. I always say that these roles helped give me the well rounded experience to run my own small businesses.
After having the kiddos I felt that Corporate life was just not for me anymore. I stayed home for a bit but always craved more (and heck I spent so many years on my education I wanted to use it!) I started marketing consulting for small businesses as a side gig. I loved it - I started realizing that I was inserting myself into all aspects of the business - not just marketing. When an opportunity came to own my own store while living outside Chicago - I took a leap with a friend and we opened Jori and June (a women’s clothing and accessory store).
After one more move back to Minnesota (yes I moved a lot - every three years a new state.) We opened the second location in beautiful downtown Stillwater. I LOVED having a store downtown and loved seeing and meeting new customers every day. At this point I had the store for 5 years and my kids were starting to get WAY more active in sports and activities. There were days that I was paying people to just drive them to and from activities - it started weighing heavy on my heart. With the lease coming up I decided to not renew and to focus on them. I closed the store last January - and than in February this thing called COVID-19 happened…..
If there is one thing to know about me, it is that I am an open book. I truly believe that being authentic, transparent and vulnerable is something to be celebrated. We live in a world today that displays and promotes unrealistic expectations - especially for women (and moms). My goal has always been to use my platform of my businesses to showcase “real life” situations, which means sometimes they are good, but sometimes they are not - and that is OKAY!
Fast forward to where we are today. If you meet Emily you will instantly feel a connection. She is one of the kindest souls I have ever met - and so incredibly intelligent. We both connected on the challenges it is to run a household, maintain a business, and raise children. We find ourselves researching and practicing healthy life choices (as much as possible) in our own lives and wanted to join efforts to bring this to others. The first thing we wanted to introduce was the juices and cleanses. This is one way to get a lot of GOOD into your body at one time. We all lead busy lifestyles that we often forget to take care of ourselves. BUT, I always say that to be good for others, I have to be good to me first.
Do we claim to be experts?! Heck no. What we do know is there are so many of us out there trying to get through each day. We are so excited to start this journey with all of you - and to see how the Goodery grows.
Always remember to Be The Good.
At the age of 16 I lost my mom to cancer—she was far too young, only 40 years old herself. Because of that experience health and wellness from a preventative standpoint became a priority to me. Whole foods, good sleep, regular exercise, mindfulness, time outdoors, and focusing on presence over perfection have long since been strong interests. Easy stuff—right?? Hah, not always easy in practice even with the strongest of “whys” behind it.
When my oldest kiddo, Geno was born, I wasn’t taking care of myself as well as I should have been. As you likely know, sleep with a newborn is most often little to none. My body wasn’t happy and was depleted after 9 months of pregnancy, and zombie walking through the first couple of months with a newborn. Warning signs started popping up and I ignored them. Over the course of a couple of months in and out of many doctors offices and specialists offices, I was diagnosed with an autoimmune condition, and I realized very quickly that it was time to focus on me again.
Throughout her wellness battle, my mom had introduced me to juicing, so I understood the benefits (though as a kid at the time, I didn’t fully grasp the importance). Later on, when I moved away from home, her juicer came with me. It was time to get that baby back in action. Juicing became a big part of my journey back to health, but was just one piece of the puzzle.
Based on recommendations from my doctors and natural medicine practitioners, it was not only important, but necessary that I take better care of myself. Through a process of cutting out all the bad (even my morning coffee—uggh), pouring all of the good nutrients in, sleeping more (had to lean into my “village” for this one big time), moving my body more, and working through my stressors differently, I was able to allow my body time to heal and in turn send my autoimmune condition into “remission”. And I can happily say that going 4 years without a symptom made that 3-6 month reset so so worth it!
Not everyone needs to jump into such a big reset, but for me, that’s what worked -- and because of that reset, I am able to live in a more balanced world again as long as I am mindful of getting enough of the good stuff and keeping the not so good habits in check. My body is stronger now and can handle me throwing it for a curveball here and there. It has become so clear that what we put into our bodies and how we care for them truly does matter, and if we are listening just the slightest to our bodies, they will tell us what we need and let us know when they need more love.
I truly believe that balance is possible. Wellness isn’t black and white—One good choice leads to another good choice, so keep taking small steps in the right direction and your mind and body will thank you.
My husband Dave and I moved around quite a bit before settling in here—something Melissa and I have in common. After a few years wandering through MN, the Netherlands, Wales, and CO, 5 years ago we made the decision to call Stillwater our home after falling in love with its charm. We now enjoy this charming little city with our 2 boys Geno and Graeme, 2 cats (Dolce & Louie), and our most recent addition--rescue Golden Retriever (Flynn).
After years staying home with our boys, I started to dabble in some consulting work and then jumped in head first realizing how much I loved it. Now having spent the past few years consulting with local small businesses and helping them through their pain points and helping them to grow—I am inspired everyday. There is just something about the connection and passion in small business that I have fallen in love with. That local, small town feel, this community, the people, and the beautiful friendships that we have built here have become so very important to us. Which brings us to this next adventure.
Melissa & I met at a kids birthday party—our kiddos brought us together first. I was instantly intrigued by her ability to run multiple successful businesses in multiple states, while still being present in her family life and friendships, all while somehow making it look effortless and graceful. The more I got to know her, the more I realized that this is something she works at and is intentional about. She is incredibly strong, disciplined and purposeful, and that is what allows her to be so successful in so many different spaces.
Our instant connection (and lots of sideline time together on the lacrosse fields) led to many real conversations about our struggles in trying to do what’s best for ourselves, while striving to be sure we are doing right by our kiddos, simultaneously. Out of these conversations, our similar busy schedules, shared passion for local, small business, and common desire to make good choices for ourselves and our families, The Goodery came to light—easy and convenient good choices for busy people, a source of encouragement in our community, and your reminder that (big or small) every single good choice matters.
Grateful for the opportunity to be on this life journey with all of you!
Twin Cities Live -- September 28th, 2021
St. Croix Valley Magazine -- April/May 2022
VoyageMinnesota Magazine -- August 2022