Coffee Shop

I think awhile back I mentioned a new business venture… Well, it was/is a coffee franchise. I’ve been in contact with the franchise manager, and all the top people at the company since sometime in December. I’ve met with my accountant to review financials, my lawyer to review the franchise disclosure agreement and contract, a real estate broker to search out possible locations, the banker to talk about financing, and even a small business advisor here to provide some insight into the industry and local economy. The franchisor has awarded me the opportunity to purchase, when/if I’m ready.

And then yesterday in the news I read that a different coffee franchise is planning several locations in my city, including one on the very land I was considering. Seriously?? I was super bummed all of yesterday, really just feeling like this meant I needed to halt my plans. I mean, maybe it was a sign, maybe God’s trying to tell me something…

This morning the franchise manager called me and we chatted for quite a bit. Of course he said I shouldn’t be afraid of competition, that competition is actually good. We talked about how the business models and intended customers are a bit different for the two franchises in question… But I don’t know. I mean, of course this guy wants me to purchase, as he works on commission. I spent all morning looking back over the numbers, messing with the payroll expenses and sales forecasts, trying to get an idea of how this will work and ultimately how many coffee shops this town can actually support. But I’m still lost…

More to come on this I guess.

Still Winter

It’s snowing. And sleeting. The roads are slick. I almost killed myself walking out of daycare today, slipped on the sidewalk. I want summer. It’s mid-April for gosh sakes! I have lots of things I want to do with the backyard, but kind of difficult when new snow is still being added to the ground…

I’m beginning to wonder if my sickness is really allergies. I’ve had an awful clogged head, stuffy nose, watery eyes deal going on two weeks now. Lots of pressure in my head but this morning I woke with pain in my teeth. I seem to think that might be a sign of a sinus infection… WebMD believes I have TB, but Eric confirmed it’s highly unlikely. And scolded me for using such a site when I’m married to a physician.

This afternoons activity is more work on my business plan. I signed up for LivePlan. It’s around $20 a month for the time you are using the software, so hopefully it’s worth it. Still very early phases, as in, this is all just an idea in my head. I have lots of data to gather and market research to complete, but at least I have a start! I’ve had several people interested in playing a part in this venture… but none have any capital (cash) to contribute. So… I’m not really sure how to include them when they aren’t partaking in the actual risk of starting a business. Consultants perhaps? Although I’m not exactly sure how knowledgeable they are in what I need consulting on, and I can’t really pay everyone who offers me an opinion or suggestion… I mean, I’ll gladly accept suggestions, but probably not in exchange for any measurable amount of income. Also, I’m trying to decide how much I want to disclose on my blog. It would be helpful to receive feedback, but I’m not sure readers want to follow along with my every step of this tedious process. We’ll see I guess… More to come…

Where to focus…


What I’m supposed to be reading…  ⇑

But I’m actually wasting time on Facebook and wondering how to even begin in this so-called business world. Somehow I fear my BBA in Finance and MBA isn’t going to help me as much as I’d like to think.

My idea is a bit of a spin-off from a previous idea. And I’ll certainly share at some point, but I’m not prepared to just yet. Hopefully soon though, as I’d like to use my blog as a sounding-board, for advice, if any of you have any to offer, or certainly just a place for me to get out ideas and feelings.

Which leads to me to ponder my ever-growing to do list. Or maybe I should call it my wish list. It keeps getting longer… in no particular order…

  1. Another child (our frozen embryo) is certainly on my mind, but obviously not anytime soon. Well, I am 38, so sometime in the next decade 😉
  2. The Love Dare book I started reading and posting about, which I kind of lose track of… Posts are at the top of my homepage if you’re interested.
  3. Um… this house needs decorating, and organizing, especially the storage room which is a mess of baby stuff we probably could sell. (Does anyone actually ever organize their storage room?)
  4. I’m attempting to take a larger role in the MOMs Club I joined, as I now lead their Coffee Talk group and Book Club. It’s not a huge time commitment, but it’s a few hours a week.
  5. Proposed business – see books above. Exciting, but terrifying too.
  6. Re-joining Kosama or some other workout facility.
  7. Furthering production and items for sale at Nora Mae’s Boutique. Lots of ideas, but time is limited, well, maybe limited isn’t the right word. Maybe I’m just trying to spread too many interests of mine over the time I do have.
  8. Attempts to keep this house running, groceries purchased, laundry clean, dinner on the table each evening, etc.
  9. My love of photography has always been in the back of my mind… I’d love to teach myself or perhaps take some classes.

Maybe I just need help focusing. Maybe I need to pick one thing at a time…


Coffee Shop

I’ve been feeling a bit sad this week…  Our original IVF plan had tentatively scheduled our egg retrieval for either today or tomorrow, so I can’t help but feel a little discouraged.  I actually stayed home from work yesterday as I woke up with a TERRIBLE headache.  I’m not really one to get headaches though, well, aside from when I was on the Lupron.  (And oh yeah, so excited for that higher dose next time!)  My headache yesterday was different though, it felt like my skull was crushing itself, and it was difficult to focus, like I was strangely cross-eyed.  So odd.  So I emailed my boss and spent the morning snoozing.  When I woke around noon I actually felt quite a bit better.  I found something semi-healthy to call lunch and by 1:45pm my headache was pretty much gone.  Why is it though, that I always feel such an intensely guilty feeling whenever I stay home from work sick?  I mean, I guess it’s because I could have forced myself to work, I do sit at a desk all day, it’s not like I was physically unable to work.  Or perhaps it’s because some of my coworkers are there every day, no matter what.  They could be puking with a 105 fever and they’d be there with their ice pack and chicken noodle soup!  So yes, I felt guilty and weak for staying home, but it was nice to relax and catch up on some sleep.  And if nothing else, my sore leg muscles are feeling much better after rehydrating, as they’ve been aching since Monday’s and Tuesday’s workouts.

And guess who moved all their crap back home for good last night???  Yes, Eric is finally finished with his Mason City rotation!!!  He got home around 7pm last night, with bags of junk in hand that are now consuming any and all possible floor space in our bedroom.  And I assume they will be there for weeks, until I go through them, as we all know how organization isn’t Eric’s strong point.  Regardless though, it’s wonderful to have him home.  I am sad to give back his prime parking spot at the University though…  (Maybe next winter I’ll be home with a newborn!)

Eric actually had today and tomorrow, plus this weekend off, and I’m a little sad I didn’t plan ahead to use some vacation.  It’s month-end though, so really not the best time to be off.  One of these years I’m not going to work in accounting so I can use vacation any old week of any old month I want!  Ah, in my dreams…

Speaking of working, I have a new (somewhat crazy) idea…  In reference to my post about becoming a stay-at-home mom and how if my impression of such is not true, which I’m pretty sure we can all agree isn’t, then I’d just assume work outside the home.  But doing what…?  I’ve worked in Finance/Accounting for the past ten years since I finished my undergrad, and worked on my MBA along the way, so business is really all I know.  That said though, I can’t lie, sometimes sitting in front of a computer all day browsing countless excel files gets old.  There are only so many pivot tables you can make in one day or vlookup’s you can perform.  And no, contrary to Eric’s understanding, a vlookup is not a sexual position.  I need to feel like I truly make a difference, and closing the books every month just really isn’t doing it for me.  I want to feel personally responsible for the success of, well, something. But what…

I can only assume Eric’s and my new city has various institutions with financial roles similar to my current position at the University, in fact, those working on Eric’s contract already assured me there is a job at the hospital there for me, but I feel like maybe it’s time to go a different direction.  For the past ten years I’ve always picked the safe, secure route, which is fine, good actually, it’s the responsible thing, but sometimes being responsible only gets you so far.  I keep hearing Eric’s words in my head, that what I get out of this move is money, and if that’s true, I want to find a way to use that for good.  So I’ve decided, I’m going to open a coffee shop.  Now granted, this will require a sh*t ton of research, which I’ve already started, as I’ll need a business plan if I ever hope to be approved for a business loan.  And as much as I hated that class on business plans, I understand it’s necessary, in fact, it might be what either proves or disproves this is a good idea.  This will really be the first time in my life  I’ve ever had the opportunity to take such a risk, and for that, I feel very fortunate.  While I’d prefer to acquire a business loan, it’s somewhat comforting to know that Eric’s income could carry us until I get my feet on the ground and running.  Plus, making any real profit is gonna take a ton of lattes and mochas to really amount to much!  I think this will be a great opportunity for me though, it’s that something for me I was struggling to grasp in this move that is otherwise focused on Eric’s career.  I’m actually quite excited now… something I’ve yet to feel until just the past few days regarding this move.  And what’s even better?  Eric is supportive of this idea, he thinks our new city will be the perfect environment for such a startup.  I’ve added a new page, Coffee Shop, to the menu so I can track progress and jot down notes and such.  Don’t get too excited just yet, we have a long way to go, but it should be a fun ride!