Now, you may be thinking to yourself… “they have their hands full with two babies under two at their house…” and you would be correct. However, that is just half the story! So what do we do with the rest of our time? This is what this post is about. For I know I will be referring to our small business and our church site in the future so here I will attempt to give you the back story.
Two years after this most glorious of days we went to dinner at our favorite restaurant where we sat on the beautiful patio and discussed our future. We recalled that night that Seth went to school for marketing and business, with hope that someday he would own his own business. Having a dad that was an entrepreneur I understood that if Seth started a business, it would be a family affair. This lead into discussion about what were things we both enjoyed (we are VERY different). We settled on coffee 🙂 It was perfect. Coffee is what brought us together while studying in college. It was where we started dating and what we enjoyed with our friends. We knew that to start a coffee shop in a town that is a summer destination would not be a sustainable endeavor. We came up with the idea that if we roasted it ourselves – that would allow us to support the business through the cold winter months. That same week we learned that our small group leader from our church had been roasting his own coffee in a converted pizza oven for about a year. We were stunned at how well ours and their vision for a coffee shop/roastery in our little town aligned. Within the month we became business partners and landed our first contract. By November (our anniversary is in July) we had made our first big purchase of a vintage italian 70 pound roaster that would make this business go from a good idea and a hobby to the real thing!
From there we have been growing every day and you can now get our coffee in restaurants, grocery stores, cafe’s, and we will be opening up our very own coffee shop next spring, Lord willing!
But that’s just the surface. The real stories are in the day to day. For each day has truly been a surprise for us regarding Infusco. After finding our business partners, our first contract was from the brewery down the street in Sawyer, Mi Greenbush Brewery (click here for more information about them) who used our coffee in their java stout. We got connected then with some friends who work for the airlines and travel frequently to Kenya. They just happened to know coffee farmers who could really use our help! The story just completely blows me away… that we are seeming to stumble upon this amazing opportunity to help farmers on the other side of the world by giving them fair wages for their work which we get to enjoy every single day in our home with our morning coffee. i mean, seriously, most of us drink at least one cup of coffee a day. And to know that this cup of coffee comes from a farmer in Kenya is just incredible. It doesn’t stop there though! Through another set of miraculous details, Rich (our business partner) met the bishop of Kenya in the region he was in, who helped us purchase two different farms where there is coffee being grown specifically for Infusco Coffee Roasters RIGHT NOW! To read more of the trips to Kenya and first hand stories/pictures. Please click here to read our blog.
On a personal note. The same month we started Infusco I found out I was pregnant with my daughter, Lucy. Seth and I were both working full time jobs and spending our Saturdays doing coffee tastings to get our coffee in the hands of coffee drinkers in the area. It was a full and wonderful time in our lives. Married and without kids… we definitely found ways to fill up our lives! Also, it was crazy… there were coffee beans everywhere! Our dining room table was transformed for awhile into assembly lines for bagging and labeling our products to fill up the shelves of our growing customers. I can remember coming home after work at the hospital, laying down on the couch for a nap and waking up with several friends in our house helping Seth fill the newest order. I won’t lie. There have been several times that I wanted to quit. There have been many late nights and early mornings where I didn’t feel like sharing my husband with a business. There have been prayers, asking God if we did the right thing by jumping into this with two feet. Do I think that this was our calling? I’m not sure if I can say that… But I can say that I see God’s fingerprints all over everything that we do with Infusco. He has taken us over every hurdle these past 2 years. Every bill we’ve had to pay, every dead end we’ve run into, every misunderstanding we’ve come across. Every time I’ve wanted to quit, it seems that within 48 hours something wonderful happens that keeps us going. This is my faith then. Trusting that God is leading us one step at a time. Knowing that he will take care of me and my family whether Infusco works or not. And then I remember that it isn’t about me. That Infusco is blessing people. It blesses the cafe in Benton Harbor who are making a difference in that community. It blesses the farmers in Kenya who were being jipped in their salary. It will hopefully bless my hometown by giving an alternative place for community other than a brewery and a truck stop. On top of all this, I think it is changing us too. Seth and I have grown tremendously in our communication with one another through all this. We work as a team (most of the time) and have been able to serve alongside one another in ways we never imagined. The coolest thing though – is all the cool people we’ve gotten to meet. People we never would have crossed paths with if we had not started a coffee roasting business. I pray that this will continue. I pray that God will use this little business in BIG ways. So, get yourself some coffee and visit our website or facebook page and discover how awesome locally roasted Kenyan (and other varieties) grown coffee can taste and feel!
Oh yeah… and we also started a church!!!!!! This is not an afterthought… but chronologically it went like this
1. Got married July 2009
2. Moved back to Sawyer, Mi to join Sawyer Highlands Church church plant “someday” 2010
3. Started Infusco Coffee Roasters November 2011
4. Joined the launch team for Converge Community Church December 2011
5. Bought a house in New Buffalo, Mi April 2012
6. Lucy was born May 2012
7. Converge Community Church began Oct 2012
8. Jack was born August 2013
9. Infusco Coffee Shop May 2014!
So…. yup 🙂 pretty great. And the back story of Converge deserves more brain power than mine can muster this evening… so I will continue tomorrow! goodnight!!!!