Yoga by the Pool

stephanie grinols

Blogger, soon-to-be author, momma, business owner, creative entrepreneur

It was a warm summer night in 2019, and I was walking around the little shops of Leavenworth, WA. If you don't know the area, it is an adorable little Bavarian town, with cobbled streets and Bavaria architecture. I had come upon a shop full of clothing and accessories that people who enjoy the outdoors would like; very casual clothes, sweatshirts and headbands. The headbands were what I got excited about. They were the full headbands that wrap around your head; some even had a turbin look to them. I was so excited! I was trying on a couple, seeing how they looked. They gave me a bit of a hippie look, which I was in love with! I bought a couple of headbands and went on with my day... wearing the headbands for the rest of my trip, and the days after.

A few weeks later I went to the Puyallup State Fair. We walked through the front gates and tried to decide where we were going to go. We hit a scone stand first, and then headed into the exhibition halls where people sold their own goods and wares. The first, and I mean the FIRST booth I saw was a woman selling the same headbands that I had fallen in love with a few weeks prior. I headed over there immediately and started trying them all on. I loved them ALL! I started talking to the woman there; she was the owner and told me her story and I just couldn't believe it! I related to her in so many way; she was a single mom when she started her business.. she wanted to find a way to get more time with her daughter.. I could see myself in her and in that exact moment Ava Co. was born. 

I knew that I could do this. I already loved headbands and I knew I could figure out how to make them. A friend had bought me a sewing machine a couple years prior to this so I could sew the patches on my daughter's Girl Scout uniform, but I could never figure out how to use it, so it just sat in its box. So I am sure you're thinking, "If she couldn't figure out how to sew on some patches, how's she going to start a sewing company?" Yeah, I thought the same thing for a minute, but I was determined. 

From that moment on all that I could think about was how I was going to start my own business. I took my sewing machine over to a girlfriends' house so she could show me how to use it. I watched Youtube videos after that so I could nail down how to thread the bobbin. Within two days I felt like a pro and I was making new headbands left and right. 

Prior to walking into that Leavenworth shop, I had been in the world of banking and mortgage and had gotten to a point of truly disliking it. For most of the year leading up to this I had been trying to figure out what I was passionate about and make that my main focus. I had started journaling and writing, but didn't feel anything tangible happening. As soon as I started sewing my headbands, I felt accomplished and like I had a solid direction finally. 

My day job is no longer mortgage (thank goodness... I was never really all that good at it since my heart wasn't in it), I do sales and marketing for a catering company which I LOVE! I went to culinary school YEARS ago (a story for another day), so this job allows me to dive into my creative side a bit, while being around delicious food and allows me to build relationships with people. Someday I will do Ava Co. full time, but until that day comes, I am pretty happy doing it on the side and having my day job as well.

In addition to all my professional aspirations, I am also the momma to a beautiful little girl, who however, is no longer very little. She is the moon and the stars in my world, and brings me more happiness than I could ever find words to share. One of the biggest things I've always wanted to impress upon her is that we are capable of anything we set our minds to. If we want to be a chef, be a chef. If we want to be an astronaut, go be an astronaut. If you want to be a business owner, work hard and fight for what you believe in. 

Life is short and we only get one of them, so find what you're passionate about and what brings you the most happiness and just do it! You'll never regret it!

Thanks for stopping by my page! I look forward to hearing from you!