This time last year, my husband and I were in Colorado with my best friend from college and her husband. I had originally picked August for our trip because we usually slow down a little after school starts. Last year, after I made those plans and blocked the days on my calendar at work, we got the news that there would be changes. A new boss, a renovation, a transition to booth rent, open salon to suites– we didn’t even know where we would be moving during the renovation. There were so many unknowns.
Today, we are moved into our suite, booth rent is awesome, we’ve added new services, and Chloe has added a new member to her family. This time last year, she wasn’t even pregnant yet, and I had no desire for another dog. Now she has her precious daughter Stella, and I have my standard poodle puppy, Fletcher. My daughter started Kindergarten, and I started going in to work earlier. And, sadly, our amazing Mindy has moved on to another job.
Mindy was our receptionist extraordinaire. She held us all together during that renovation. She has helped us all move furniture into our suites. She went with me into the demolition area to save my old salon chair– in a dress and cowboy boots, too, I might add. She has cleaned and cleaned. She even fixed our shampoo bowl leak. And last week, she helped me reconnect a button on our pedicure chair! Do you have a coworker who would get on the floor with you and look up under a pedicure chair, just to help you out because she loves you so?
Her customer service is the best I’ve ever seen in my life, and it kind of spoiled me. When I go to other businesses, their people just can’t compare to her level of awesome. She also gives the best hugs. Friday was her last day, and it’s bittersweet because she is going to be awesome at her new job as well. She can’t not be. She’ll still come for lunch and to get her hair and nails done. But still. I’m a little verklempt about it. *Talk amongst yourselves. I’ll give you a topic…*
In the summer of 2013, I started working the front desk at the salon. I had quit teaching and needed a paycheck while I studied for my cosmetology exam. Shawna bought the salon in October of that year. She started advertising and growing the business. One of my husband’s cousins had married another stylist, and we talked about it a lot that Thanksgiving. I was pregnant by then, and I just didn’t know what I wanted to do. I wanted to work there, but I was unsure if the clientele would grow. It seemed that all the other stylists had such a great client base. How could I ever grow like that? Tasha, the fellow family stylist, was working at her mom’s salon in Kentucky, and I’ll never forget what she said. “If you have a boss who supports you and truly has your back, then that’s where you want to be. The clients will come.”
So after my pregnancy brain fog cleared, I took the first part of my cosmetology exam before Christmas. And then I took the second part of the exam in January. Shawna put me behind a chair almost immediately. Then, 2 weeks later, she hired Chloe. And 2 weeks after that, she hired Joena. I was really worried then. How could we all gain clients? But Jessie, another stylist, assured me that Shawna knew what she was doing. We’ve all been at the salon ever since. And you know what? Tasha and Jessie were right. The salon grew. The clients came. And Shawna knew what she was doing. Especially when she hired her friend Mindy to help with the front desk a couple of years later.
How could I ever have known that Shawna buying the salon allll those years ago would lead me to adding to my family? We’re going to miss our sister, Mindy, that’s for sure. She has taught me so much. And for that, I am forever grateful. And y’all better know that if she doesn’t come to lunch every week, we will be tracking her down! 🙂
This picture is from the year she started. This was the Christmas party that year (2015!), and we all had a BLAST. We laughed and laughed. She and I got there early because I had a toddler at home and needed some girl time. We sat at the bar and waited for everyone to arrive. That’s when I knew she would be my friend for life. I can’t thank her enough for that.
Here’s another reason we love her. That’s Chloe’s little girl Lena. And some nostalgia from before the renovation! Everything about this photo makes me laugh.