Now that's a cocktail......

August 10, 2019

Nothing I love more than a delicious cocktail, second to my wine of course, but I I don't like the sugary sweet syrups and mixers filled with ingredients that are just not good for you. I am thinking that is exactly what Greta was thinking when she developed these honey simple syrups.

Hudson & Lee has been changing up cocktails since 2016. Greta, a wife and mother of two boys was on a quest to create simple and healthier product options for our grocery shelves. By taking her love of honey to a new level by making her own simple syrups at home, one day she wondered "why can’t this all natural honey syrup be bottled and available for everyone to purchase and use?" After lots of hard work she has perfected the syrups and drink recipes.

Why do I love this? Well for all the same reasons as everything else I feature here:

 

 - The syrups contain NO SUGAR, NO PRESERVATIVES, NO ARTIFICIAL FLAVORS OR DYES, NO DAIRY, EGG, LACTOSE, OR GLUTEN. 

 - ANYTHING that calls for simple syrup? This is a perfect replacement. Lemonade, iced tea, craft cocktails like Mojito, Sangria, Margarita,  and Moscow Mule........ You will find the perfect mixer with this "simple" syrup.

 - Greta is yet another BADASS Mompreneur. From an idea born in her own kitchen to the growing business Hudson & Lee, she is another example of a woman determined to be living her best life and taking her "dream" and making it a reality.

By the way, the inspiration for the name Hudson & Lee came from combining her two boys middle names. That's awesome!

Meet Sabrina

March 12, 2019

I am taking a new spin on my LOCAL FAVES for this one as I am featuring a one woman show, Sabrina.

Sabrina is what I call a #badass in every sense of the word. She inspires and while I have only known her a short time I am quite certain I will be better off for having known her. She is a mom of four, owns her own businesses, and is a champion for women! She is inspiring to say the least.

Gabbie's Goodies

Sabrina has been making peanut butter bonbons for years from a recipe passed down from her Mom. She had a successful run back in Massachusetts but had to go on hiatus after she adopted her son. Six years and one more baby later she is up and running in Wake Forest, NC! The bonbons are not only all natural and gluten free but they are DELICIOUS. They are available for sale in my booth but check them out HERE.

Trades of Hope

A few years ago Sabrina started her Trades of Hope business. What an incredible organization! The mission of Trades of Hope is to break the cycle of poverty for women and their families around the globe through the creation of jobs and sustainable businesses. They partner with over 20 artisan groups to sell handcrafted jewelry, scarves, bags, home decor and other specialty items. You literally CAN help change the world by shopping with Trades of Hope! 

 

"These last three years have been such an amazing journey. I have learned that I have power. Power to make changes in the lives of others. I have power to bring hope to myself and to others."

By purchasing a Trades of Hope product, you are giving a silenced woman a voice and an opportunity to escape the grip of poverty. They are helping women escape the sex trade, slums, sweatshops and extreme poverty by selling their fair trade products. This allows them to put a roof over their head, food on the table and send their children to school to end the cycle of poverty.

I was incredibly inspired by Sabrina, her story and her "vision" to some day bring these businesses together. I think she is just getting started! Check out Trades of Hope by clicking below.

Joeveo

December 09, 2018

Imagine your mug full of coffee or tea was always the perfect temperature and stayed that way? Look no further. The Joeveo Temperfect Mug is amazing! No more burnt tongues and lukewarm beverages my friends. Thanks to Dean - inventor and owner of Joeveo........

WHAT IS IT?

These mugs have an extra layer of insulation that quickly absorbs the excess heat from your freshly-brewed, but too hot to drink coffee bringing it to a comfortable drinking temperature in minutes. That heat is stored and then used to keep your drink's temperature just right for hours. No batteries of cords, just science!

WHY DO I LOVE IT?

 - Dean, inventor had a vision and brought it to life. A true entrepreneurial spirit story. You KNOW I love this.

 - The mugs were designed and assembled right here in my hometown of Wake Forest, NC

 - This magical mug brings my "too hot to drink" coffee and/or tea to a comfortable drinking temperature and keeps it that way for HOURS!!!

 - I was able to see where these are produced by this mostly "one man" show and the attention to detail and great care that is given to each mug and packaging is remarkable.

I can't say enough good things about these mugs and I am so honored I will be able to make these available for sale in my booth at The Cotton Company. You can also check out the Joeveo website to learn more and buy a mug. Its worth every penny.

Larry's Coffee

October 09, 2019

Listen... I don't know Larry but Larry seems pretty damn cool. He's figured out a way to do business responsibly and ethically and he seems to be having a blast while doing it!

WHAT IS IT?

Coffee, lots and lots of coffee and tea and cold brew, you name it! Local Raleigh business, Larry's Beans, is happily committed to blending and roasting innovative uniquely delicious coffees — and making the world a better place.

WHY DO I LOVE IT?

 - 100% of their coffee is Fair Trade, Shade Grown, and Organic, all slow-roasted to bring out every note of indigenous flavor.

 - Their  green-o-vated facilities use passive solar construction, active solar systems, radiant floors, zoned heating, composting, and rainwater harvesting to minimize our impact on this awesome planet. Coffee delivered locally is done so in the "Veggie Bus," a school bus converted to run on vegetable oil. Seriously.

 - Let's talk about the coffee... there is something for everyone. So far my fave is the single source from Mexico. I look forward to the holiday blend and have seem amazing reviews for The Cowboy Blend and French French. I look forward to trying them all. Great flavor all around and you can feel good about what you are drinking.

Check it out!

"Sustainability' is only worth it if you have something to sustain, so we enjoy life around here and try to help others to do the same."

 - Larry

The Wooden Wardrobe

July 20, 2018

Super excited for this young entrepreneur who happens to be a family friend and caregiver for my kids. Not ONLY is she a Kindergarten teacher but she has started this ONLINE clothing business and is rocking it! Super proud of her!

WHAT IS IT?

The Wooden Wardrobe is an online clothing boutique that provides stylish, comfortable, and inexpensive clothing. Our goal is to make women feel beautiful in high quality boutique clothing without having to break the bank.

WHY DO I LOVE IT?

 - Liz provides great pics and video descriptions of everything she sells. It makes it easy to buy online without trying on. She gives great guidance on sizing.

 - It's so easy.... you like something? You say so on Facebook. Boom. It's yours. You pay, she mails it. This goes a long way in this day and age where time is precious and I am not really a "shopper." You will find me in a mall literally once or twice a year.

 - VERY affordable and she offers both regular and plus sizes.

 - The first shirt I bought is super soft, very comfortable and fits perfectly. 

 - The variety and style is mostly casual, unique and offers a little something for all tastes.

PLEASE check her out. This lady is beautiful inside and out and you can see that come through in her business. I wish her all the best!

NOTE: It is a closed group on Facebook so ASK TO JOIN and let her know I sent ya!

Rising Smoke Sauceworks

April 22, 2018

Great product. Great Story. From growing peppers in a window box outside his apartment in NY to mass producing unique and flavorful hot sauces that most certainly bring the heat!

WHAT IS IT?

A guy living his dream developing hot sauces from his own NC garden and now sharing it with the world. Their MANTRA.....When it comes to peppers, we believe you should smoke’ em if you got ‘em! But, if you don’t, well that’s cool, too. We’ve developed many different tasty and delightful ways to punish and please your tongue. Find your favorite flavor, and start to savor.

WHY DO I LOVE IT?

For all the reasons I feature anything on here. It's local, it's unique and it's another example of the entrepreneurial spirit alive and well. Oh and the the product is amazing and this is coming from someone who is not a hot sauce expert. We ordered 3 sauces to start:

 - Training Wheels - my personal fave as I am a wimp when it come to hot stuff. GREAT on eggs and but really goes with anything that needs a condiment!

 - Fiesta Caliente - This has more heat but I can still tolerate. Great for Mexican dishes, taco topper, etc....

 - Smoldering Embers - this brings the smoke factor and the HEAT which my husband LOVES! 

Bottom line - President of Rising Smoke Sauceworks, Mike, is on to something here and I for one am inspired! He is living his dream one pepper at a time.  In his words.... "I have always heard that when you love what you do, you never work a day in your life.  After the hours and travel I put in for my “day job," I come home and pack up sauces for shipments and work weekends at festivals and can honestly say it doesn’t feel like work.  It truly is a passion."

Well done. That's pretty #BADASS. 

Leli's Diner

March 09, 2018

I could go on all day about this Farm to Fork Italian experience in Wake Forest! Owned and operated by Joe and Sarka Leli this unique spot is literally our favorite.

 

WHAT IT IS?

A local gem that serves contemporary Italian-American cuisine and then some. It is an authentic farm to table experience serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner. YES, they serve breakfast ALL DAY LONG!!

WHY DO I LOVE IT?

They buy from local, responsible sources, sustainable growers, and humane farms to ensure their food represents only the very best in quality and taste. Options are endless....  I am a vegetarian and have NO Problem finding something to eat here. The hubs and I have breakfast there every Friday morning and it is the highlight of our week. We get amazing food and our weekly catch up chat with Joe and Sarka who have become friends.

COOKING CLASSES - Joe's Cooking Classes are fun and inspiring. My friend and I attend as many as we can and have a blast.

 

WINE DINNERS - These never disappoint for a date night. Multi course meal paired with wines from a featured winery. The last one I went to I literally had the best dessert I have ever had in my life! Always a new food experience each and every time.

RESULTS?

Happy tummies all over Wake Forest. A local go to that we know will always be not just good.... but great. They also cater and have online ordering and by eating here you are supporting a hard working family living their dream one plate at a time!

Hint: If your a Yankee's Fan you might get special attention. LOL

Rose Trail Images

March 02, 2018

Meet Rose Trail Images and the passionate, beautiful, talented woman behind the camera is Audrey. Audrey is a friend and a brilliant photographer that has built a very successful business in a short period of time. She inspires.

WHAT IS IT?

Rose Trail Images does professional photography. Not limited to.... Family pics, Pet pics, Newborn Pics, Special Events and Weddings, Head Shots and Boudoir (VA VA VOOM!)

 

WHY DO I LOVE IT?

Yes, I'm biased in that Audrey is my friend. But I also know talent when I see it. Her photography are works of art. She has a eye for this and her presence behind the camera is like nothing I have experienced.... her ability to make you feel at ease and be yourself is remarkable.

 

RESULTS? Beautiful candid photo's that capture authentic and special moments that you will treasure forever. AND at extremely reasonable prices.

Check out her portfolio on her site and BLOG!

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