Friday, September 26, 2008

Let's Do Tea: A Catchy Phrase and a Successful Business

March 2008 marked the beginning of a new business venture for Melissa Harrington. Having gone to a tea party in February, Melissa rediscovered a deep love for loose leaf tea and began exploring the option of running her own part-time business. A few days after her first tea party, Melissa had signed on as a consultant in the almost five year old direct sales company, Let's Do Tea. Her kit arrived a week or so later full of tea, tea pots, scone mixes, and tea accessories that intrigued and excited Melissa. Within the first month, Melissa had sold over $1,000 in product and earned her kit back for free. Now, six months later, Melissa continues to sell Let's Do Tea products and conduct tea parties in the homes of family, friends and tea lovers.

When asked why she chose to start up with this company as opposed to any other direct sales company Melissa replies, "Let's Do Tea stands firm in their desire to reach into people's homes and inspire hospitality. Let's Do Tea is more about selling a lifestyle of hospitality, time for ourselves and for others than it is about selling tea and teapots, although they offer a fine selection of them all!" She also mentioned the support of her husband and their own personal desire to express a deeper sense of hospitality to those around them. Since starting her business, Melissa and her husband have began hosting couchsurfers and often have friends over for tea, dinner and tea, or games and tea.

Within her business, Melissa has discovered that many people are unfamiliar with tea but find they love it! She has discovered that people prefer tea in the Fall and Winter months although many will contentedly drink coffee all year long. She has also discovered that everyone still loves the idea of having a tea party, there is something classic and nostalgic about gathering around with a cup of tea and meaningful conversation. Melissa has also learned a lot about setting goals and working within ones strengths and passions in order to find success and more importantly to enjoy the work one does. She looks forward to one day being able to survive on her tea income alone, if all goes according to plan, her business will be self-sustaining by the time her and her husband embark on parenthood.

Melissa is confident that she will be having, on average, one party a week as long as school is in session and the weather is cool, just one reason to love living in Laramie, WY. She looks forward to spending more time with family and friends and meeting more of the wonderful Laramie-tea-drinking-community.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Marriage: A Celebration of the First Year

On September 7th, 2008, the Harrington's rejoiced in having made it successfully through their first year of marriage. The Harrington's started celebrating this milestone on the night of September 5th at Lovejoy's Bar and Restaurant in Laramie, WY. After browsing the Farmer's Market, Mike and Melissa sat down to enjoy a hamburger and sandwhich together. The celebration continued into Saturday the 6th as Mike and Melissa made a choice to rest and relax in celebration of what was generally a busy year. The morning was slow-paced and calm. Melissa enjoyed down town, Mike enjoyed reading and resting at home. As a gift to Mike, Melissa generously agreed to joining up with some friends to watch the Air Force v. UW game on television. Enjoying wings, beer, football and friends, the Harrington's began reflecting on the many joys of the past year. Saturday night, the Harrington's dined out again, this time at Anong's Thai Cuisine. Here they discussed some of the highlights from their first year in marriage; including:

  • Couchsurfing

  • Seeing a Bear

  • Mike finishing school

  • Melissa starting a tea business

  • Cross-country skiing in the Big Horns

  • Taking the Dave Ramsey course

  • Learning about pet peeves

  • Overcoming

  • Getting great neighbors

  • Holidays together as a couple

  • Sharing space...

The following, September 7th was the actual anniversary date, yet with church and a meeting the celebration was more inclusive of others while still being relaxing. The top of the wedding cake came out of the freezer and made it's appearance, Mike played Settler's of Catan and Melissa began reading The Time Traveler's Wife. Overall, the weekend was all that the Harrington's could've hoped for and they go forth confident that this next year of marriage will hold many joys, celebrations, a few trials and another summer full of weddings.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Gratitude Journal

This week the Harrington Times brings you a recommendation, straight from 519 E. Clark:

Daily, recount all that you can be grateful for. Write down at least five things daily, that bring you gratitude. Remember there are always things such as food, shelter, loving family, loving friends, etc. to be thankful for even if the day has not played out as you had hoped. Call this daily recording, your gratitude journal.

For more on this idea and many other great recommendations for day to day living, check out Sarah Ban Breathnach's Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Lessons from the Couch: August '08

The month of August ushered in new couchsurfing experiences including the Harrington's first ever, real-live couchsurfing as surfers and not hosts, experience. They hosted two surfers a total of two nights gaining new stories, increased friendships and of course new lessons.

The Schulze/Hartwell Wedding provided the perfect occasion for Mike and Melissa to experience the other side of couchsurfing - being hosted. They could not have asked for better hosts or a better location. On the outskirts of Jackson Hole, WY the Harrington's found themselves in a quaint, simple log cabin alongside Jeff. Although wedding activities had the Harrington's occupied for the majority of their two day stay they brought home a handful of lessons.

Friday August 1 - Saturday August 2, 2008: Mike and Melissa

"What we learned:
  • Piece of mind has no price
  • Travel/Backpack Europe - it's a great way to make new friends and experience hospitality.
  • Brett Favre is to GreenBay Packers what the Grand Tetons are to Jackson Hole."

Sunday August 3, 2008: Cristin from New York en route to Burning Man Festival

"I feel much better after a nights rest and the tea! You both have a warm and good vibe and maybe another time we will meet again and spend more time together."

Sunday August 3, 2008: Mike and Melissa

"What we learned:

  • Burning Man is for Artists, something maybe like the Rainbow Gathering
  • Melissa does not have a strong Taurus personality
  • Tea should be experienced; steep once - notice flavor, color, etc. steep again - notice flavor, color, etc. steep again - notice flavor, color, etc..."

Late August 2008: David and Katie

"We are proud to be the 1st people you actually knew who crashed on your couch (well actually floor). Thanks so much for letting us stay with ya. It was good to see ya before we leave for China. Good luck with everything and God Bless!"

Late August 2008: Mike and Melissa

"What we experienced/learned:

  • Healthy game of Settlers of Catan (for Mike)
  • Cheap pizza makes newlyweds joyful!
  • When preparing to live overseas for a time it appears necessary to visit family and friends before departure, therefore, do not fool yourself into thinking that your travels begin the day of your flight, they begin many days before that!"


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