For those of you who have been with me since my days at the farmers market, nearly 11 years ago - thank you and welcome back! For those of you who are visiting for their very first time - thank you and welcome!
I realized something pretty major since last Mother’s Day and wanted to share it. I started SALTOPIA while I was a stay-at-home mom, with a toddler and newborn baby. I wanted chemical free salts and seasonings for my baby food recipes. I simply couldn’t find anything at grocery or specialty stores. So, I started to make my own! While creating chemical free foods for my family to ensure my babies were growing healthy, I found a new baby: SALTOPIA!
I found myself working nonstop. I was never with my family. I missed my boys playing at their soccer and baseball games. I had no idea if they had homework or if they had missed assignments until I heard from their teachers. I hardly made a good meal anymore. I was over-obligated, over-worked and completely disconnected. Then, one day between last Mother’s Day and this one: I woke up. I realized that I had not only become disconnected from my family but also disconnected from my business even though I was living at work! I lost that critical connection to my customers - which is the entire reason I love what I do! Some of my salts are named by my customers! RICHARD PEABODY PECK III is named after my own dad! I no longer knew who my customers were, what they ordered or if they even were happy with the products. It was really awful. It was a complete parallel to what was happening with my family at home. I had no idea how they were doing, if they were happy and excelling in their young lives, nor was I a part of it. All of my babies were suffering.
I guess at some points I kept pushing because I wanted to have more for my family. Make more money. Create stability for our future. Build a foundation in which the boys may be able to continue with one day. However, as the years were flying by, I realized what’s important is “right now.” My boys won’t be little much longer.
And so I took a giant step back to reconnect. It feels so good to be able to do that again. Placing notes in each customer box and being able tend to each customer request is critical to me. Maybe that won’t ever make me a millionaire - but that’s not why I started the business in the first place! I’ve heard that “business should never be taken personally” – yet, this little business is nothing but personal. I like it that way! Numbers don’t matter if when you add them up, you end up feeling negative.
My husband Michael, who coaches my sons little league teams always tells them, “It doesn’t matter if you win, what matters is that you do your best each and every game!” I’m taking his advice (as usual) and putting my best into each pinch.
Happy Mother’s Day - may every day we do our very best in life, no matter what we do! Thank you for all the love and support! - Kimarie Santiago, WIFE/MOM/CEO