"I believe your neighborhood has so much to do with your wellbeing. You hear people talk about the drudgery of grocery shopping and how unpleasant an experience it is and it doesn't have to be."
Aubrey Day and Stacy Poore are the owners and curators of Bread & Butter Neighborhood Market in downtown Colorado Springs. This bodega-inspired space boasts walkability, a welcoming environment, and a wide selection of purposeful foods and spirits — many of which are sourced from local vendors.
In this episode, enjoy the origin story of Bread & Butter, seeing how these women’s passions for food and people crossed paths to provide both a convenient, personalized grocery shopping experience and a place for neighbors to find community.
Listen to our conversation to discover how Aubrey and Stacy work to turn grocery shopping from intimidating to inviting. For more local entrepreneurial interviews, visit our full library.
Joe: Hi there. I’m Joe Dudeck, president and founder of Keyhole Marketing.
Shannon: And I’m Shannon Jirik. I work for Keyhole as the assistant brand manager.
Joe: And this is Metaphorically Speaking, a podcast that explores the mysterious side of marketing.
Shannon: Well, hello and welcome back to Metaphorically Speaking. We are super excited to get this year kicked off with our first episode of 2021.
Joe: Yeah. I know. For sure, 2020 was a long decade and we’re excited for that 10 years to be over.
Joe: Hopefully 2021 will be a lot better, a lot smoother. We would have loved to have kicked this podcast off last month, we had a couple of scheduling snafus, probably some lingering effects from 2020 into the new year, but we’re excited to get this thing going now and just continue to do this every month throughout the rest of the year.
Shannon: Absolutely. We are just looking forward to talking with more small business owners and entrepreneurs in the Colorado Springs and surrounding area and just diving into the community and kind of learning what makes these people take. So thanks for joining us for another year.
Joe: Yeah, I’m just so excited. I mean, we’ve been doing this for a little while now, and we’ve had these conversations with small business owners for many years, but I think what’s been so excited about having it on the podcast is just be able to just more personally connect with people and for people to actually hear their voices and have the dialogue and the conversations and to be able to hear them tell their story.
I mean, that’s something we’re so passionate about as marketers to be able to connect with small business owners and not only do that in a client facing relationship, but also we just get so inspired from hearing the ups and downs, the trials, the tribulations of running a small business and the things that happened, that had to happen along the way to make this thing come together.
Shannon: Yeah, and I love how those stories just connect all these small business owners and entrepreneurs and us at Keyhole. You feel so alone and isolated, I think, at times, but to be able to speak that story out loud, you just learn how many people can support you and relate to you. So it’s just exciting to build the community that way as well.
Joe: For sure, for sure. Yeah, and I think what’s always fun too is being able to get small business owners to kind of pull their eyes up from spreadsheets, reports, analytics. A lot of times you ask them how’s work going and they want to throw out numbers of how they validate their success.
I think we really want to get people to sort of lift their heads from that and start to see the things that don’t live in these black and white worlds, and really see the parts of your story that are unique. The things that separate you from the competitors out there are all these pieces of your story that can’t be tracked on a spreadsheet, and getting them to remember that, reflect back on those stories.
That’s the whole thing we’ve got, and that’s why we got this whole podcast started. That’s why we call it Metaphorically Speaking, just to kind of reflect on more the mysterious parts of the story, things that can’t be so easily tracked or looked at.
Shannon: Absolutely. Yeah. So at Keyhole we love to say we tell big stories for small businesses. So that’s what we’re going to continue to do with this podcast. We’re excited to have you join us for that.
So today we’re going to look at the who, what, when, where, why and how of another small business in downtown Colorado Springs called The Bread and Butter Neighborhood Market and it is owned and run by two incredible women, Aubrey and Stacy, and we got to chat with them and just learn more about their stories.
Joe: Yeah. Super inspiring to hear them. I mean, they’re not serial entrepreneurs. In fact, I don’t even know that they embrace that wave yet. They’re still trying to keep it away from them a little bit, and I get that. I did that for the first seven or eight years of running this business. I don’t know. There’s something about that label that doesn’t quite fit right until at some point you accept it.
But it’s a great spot. I went down there last week and it’s a great little corner spot. Definitely seems to be integral in that community and people are finding a lot of value in it. Even in a time like COVID where they’re limited on how much you can do within the community and obviously even the number of people limited in the space, people that just are able to really see that as a valuable spot for them to go and connect with people on a regular basis. I think it’s becoming what they wanted it to be, a community spot where people can see regulars and start to build a community of people.
Shannon: Absolutely. They were quick to say it’s a food store and a liquor store attached, but what was so neat to kind of discover through talking to them was just this mission of connecting people through food and connecting neighborhood locals. The fact that it’s walking distance away and just kind of central to downtown, it just creates that neighborhood environment and it makes grocery shopping a pleasant experience. I love how they’re like, “It doesn’t have to be this miserable, daunting experience. It can be enjoyable, it can be convenient,” and they’re there to support you there. You get to see locals and neighbors. So it just seems like a really nice environment that they’ve brought to downtown Colorado Springs.
Joe: For sure. So, yeah. Hopefully you enjoyed this episode. I know we did and we look forward to listening to it again.
Joe: Thanks so much for joining me on this cold winter day. Appreciate your time. Hope you guys are staying warm over there?
Stacy: Yeah, we appreciate the opportunity. Thanks to.
Joe: Yeah, this is great. I’d love to just get to know you guys personally a little bit. Stacy, maybe you can start with just giving us a sense of where you were born. What was your hometown? Where did you grow up?
Stacy: Yeah, I grew up in Oklahoma city, Oklahoma. Lived there from the time I was about five years old until I moved to Colorado. Grew up in Oklahoma city, went to school in Stillwater at Oklahoma state and then right out of college. In 1986, I moved here to Colorado Springs to be a high school teacher.
Joe: Wow, interesting. You said you grew up in Oklahoma and then moved to Colorado and then went back to Colorado or Oklahoma for college?
Stacy: No, I lived in Oklahoma city, all my life growing up in primary, middle and high school and then went to college in Oklahoma and then I moved to Colorado.
Joe: Got you. Okay.
Stacy: I’ve been here ever since.
Joe: Interesting. The job opportunity brought to you this way?
Stacy: That’s right. Yep. I had a couple of different offers, one in Littleton, one with Denver public schools and one with School District 11. I chose the one here in Colorado Springs. Super glad I did. I love this town.
Joe: That’s awesome. Aubrey, how about you? Where did you grow up and what kind of brought to you this way?
Aubrey: Well, I was born here. I’m a native, grew up here. Have lived up and down the front range. Did a short time in New York city after college. Have been back in the Springs for about seven or eight years.
Joe: Okay. Sorry. I always assume I have to ask people where they’re from around here, because most people I feel like are not from here. What did you do in New York for a while?
Aubrey: Well, I went there really just for a change of scenery after I graduated from college. I was qualified for really was to work retail. I sold wedding rings at a little specialty shop near my house and spent time exploring the city. That’s where my love of little corner markets and bodegas came from.
Joe: Nice. How long were you out there?
Aubrey: Just a year and a half.
Aubrey: I ran out of money and came home.
Joe: I hear that for sure. It’s very expensive. How about siblings for either one of you? Did you have? Were you only child, middle child or did you guys grow up in that?
Stacy: This is Stacy. I have an older brother and a younger brother. I am a middle child. They’re all in different places now as well.
Stacy: My older brothers in Minnesota and my younger brother’s in Arizona.
Joe: Okay. How about you Aubrey?
Aubrey: I’m an only child.
Joe: Okay. Now I found that interesting just to kind of see sometimes how birth order or only child syndrome, if you will. We have a one child too. I’m always interested to see how that influences his direction. Were there anything as you were growing up that you had some inkling, some thoughts about being an entrepreneur, any memories of those, or did that develop later in time?
Stacy: This is Stacy. What’s really interesting is as I was growing up or even when I was out of college and starting my career entrepreneurship was something that I thought would never be a path for me. I actually worked for junior achievement, the worldwide headquarters for many years. I always marvel that the young entrepreneurs. Just their innovation and their guts and their courage and always cheered for them and thought, Oh, that could never be me. It’s kind of interesting that something that I was afraid of at some point in my life was something that I really clamored for later on.
Joe: That’s interesting.
Aubrey: This is Aubrey. No, I never considered being a small business owner or an entrepreneur and I actually don’t really consider myself an entrepreneur now. I’m sort of a grocer first, who happens to be a small business owner on the side.
Stacy: Yeah, I think Aubrey and I are a lot of like in that regard. We’ve both had business experience and we both have business background. Sometimes I think of an entrepreneur as somebody who’s doing something bigger or riskier. Maybe we’re not thinking of ourselves as entrepreneurs, because I don’t know. It just seems like this is a grocery business –
Aubrey: Well, it wasn’t like we were thinking we should start a business. Where is there a need in what can we fill it? We both always sought out food and owning a little food store. It just happened to be that you’re a small business owner in the process.
Joe: Interesting. Yeah. I don’t know. It’s parallel to my experience. I’ve been doing this about eight years now. I think a year ago I finally accepted the fact that I was a business owner. I think I always like tried to put it off and I don’t even know why I wasn’t opposed to the term. To your same point, I compared myself to others in the industry or other people who’ve been doing it for years who had aspirations since they were three. I just couldn’t compare myself to them. I thought, well, I’m just doing this thing to get a paycheck. It just happens to be that I owned the thing versus somebody else. Once I kind of accepted it and maybe that’ll come for you too. Just the reality of, hey, I’m making the decisions of how this thing goes and we are making decisions to fill a need in the marketplace and all those things. I don’t know, it just kind of came to me eventually that’s actually what it was and it’s okay.
I had the same thing, I didn’t have any aspirations. My parents weren’t entrepreneurs. There wasn’t any sort of model in front of me that I thought cool, I want to be that person. What was the leap from school teachers or small business owner or a shop runner in New York city? Talk a little bit of like… First of all, how did you two meet? What was your path together?
Stacy: Aubrey and I met when I was a volunteer coordinator for a local political campaign and Aubrey was a volunteer. We got to meet, did the campaign. After the campaign, our mutual friend who was the person running for office, introduced us and said you guys both want to do the same thing. You should talk to one another about doing it together. We spent some time a couple of years now, almost three just meeting, sharing our ideas and our visions, which were very similar. Talking to other business owners and just really molding our plan together.
Joe: Yeah. Maybe you could walk me through your individual plans and your dreams on your own. How they merge together? What would you dream it up individually?
Stacy: I think here’s what… Aubrey you want to start? I feel far more specific about what you had envisioned because you’d spent so much time in small groceries and bodegas.
Aubrey: Yeah. When I lived in New York city, the seed was sort of planted. Gosh, this is a such a nice amenity for a community. Enjoy this very much. Every community deserves this. I wonder why just like why didn’t I have this growing up? I grew up here and shopped big-box my whole life. It felt like a great food store and more. Such an integral part of community. I lived in Denver before coming back to Colorado Springs and shopped some small markets up there as well. It sort of reinvigorated that idea that this makes sense everywhere. There’s no reason that this shouldn’t be in every community. When I came back to Colorado Springs, I was working in the nonprofit world doing a lot of policy advocacy, trying to encourage other people to Institute things like local food stores and other sort of community building and health promoting urban design elements.
It finally came to a point that I was tired of trying to encourage other people and decided she’d just do the damn thing. I know this has been sitting in the back of my mind for many years. You were asking about whether we wanted to be entrepreneurs from childhood? No, but I did spend so much time downtown in my childhood and have always heart for downtown. That was always underlying. Stacy will tell you that we came to this in very different paths. The timing really has to do with the community and where Colorado Springs was at and downtown needing a market. The two of us being crazy enough to be trying to bring it.
Joe: Going back to New York city, I want to get to your thoughts Stacy. What were some of your thoughts Aubrey? What were some things you remembered gaining at that is New York city shops, local grocery stores that you just… Those are the things that you received and you wanted to offer to somebody else?
Aubrey: Yeah. Well, I intentionally lived in Brooklyn, not Manhattan when I was in New York because it had more of a neighborhood feel. I’m a girl and I believe your neighborhood really has so much to do with kind of your wellbeing. It just was an enjoyable place to be. You hear people talk about the drudgery of grocery shopping and how unpleasant and experience it is and it doesn’t have to be. It really was enjoyable. People were nice. You got to see… You knew who you were going in to see they were there every day. They put so much passion into what they were bringing to you. Whether it was the bodega or a specialty cheese shop, the whole gamut, the heart and the passion was there in the store and It came through in the experience. That’s what I enjoyed most about it. Running into neighbors at the grocery store it’s a big deal. We can never give credit.
Joe: Yeah, I’ve done a little bit of a shopping experience is mostly like when I’m on vacation and you’re close to that area. Was your experience where you would go back regularly throughout the week versus as we talk about big box stores here, it’s the one time a week, or maybe longer? Was your experience, not only the people you saw, but you saw them on a regular basis?
Aubrey: Yeah. In an urban environment, that’s out of necessity because you just don’t have a lot of space and buying a whole bunch of groceries. I was on foot and so you couldn’t buy a couple of hundred dollars worth of groceries to schlep over. That’s part of the reason why we came to this now is that more people are looking for that lifestyle. Our model with the small corner market suits that. That is a need that we are happy to fill.
Joe: Was there anything like that at all when you were growing up? Anything downtown similar to that?
Aubrey: There was and I didn’t know it because I grew up sort of in the suburbs, what used to be the suburbs. There was the little market over on Walmart. There was a place by the college downtown, but I wasn’t even aware of it. I think a lot of people here hadn’t had that experience. These kinds of markets are all over, not just in New York city. We were out sort of doing our open houses and getting input from the community, almost everybody that said, Oh, we love a place like that. When we go to so-and-so place, or when we go on vacation, we always find our market there, get a few things. This is not a novel idea. It works well. It’s sort of surprising that it didn’t exist here. Well, it did exist here before but went away its right time for it to come back.
Joe: Stacy, what was your entry point into that? How did you get interested in those?
Stacy: From the time that my children were younger, I’d always wanted to do something around. Again, didn’t think of myself as wanting to be an entrepreneur, but thought it would be nice to have something small. That was a little cornerstone of the community, whether that’s a little flower shop or a little donut shop or little coffee shop or some combination thereof. As my kids got older and became grown men, and I started to look into what could the community really use? I was drawn a grocery store.
I spent a lot of time working at Care and Share Food Bank for Southern Colorado, which is the food bank serving 31 counties throughout Southern Colorado. Just became really aware of how important access to food, access to good food, had taken so much for granted that I didn’t know I had taken for granted. It had been completely privileged and missed my privilege until it was shown to me through my work at Care and Share. Every community deserves to have this kind of food nearby. They all deserve to have access to food and our downtown is growing. It just became something I really felt compelled to provide.
Joe: Yeah, when you both got that connection to the friend… Give me a quick reset, where were you teaching still Stacy?
Stacy: No, I was the chief operating officer at care and Share Food Bank at the time. I’ve had a number of… I was a teacher for a while. I worked in manufacturing as an operations manager for a large mail order company here in town. I worked for junior achievement. Worked for a long time at Care and Share. I’m much older than Aubrey. I was at Care and Share… Was it Care and Share at the time?
Joe: Okay. You had quite a career path that prepared the road for you a little bit?
Stacy: Certainly a lot of different paths.
Joe: Aubrey, give me a quick recap of your career path from New York city and then eventually to this plot twist?
Aubrey: Sure, I mean the quick and dirty of it is. I thought I wanted to be a doctor. I wanted to help people be healthy and I thought that medicine was the way that you did that. Through a roundabout way, I ended up in community health and public health. Largely on the policy advocacy side about how our communities either support or hinder our health, our choices and opportunities to be healthy. Most recently I was at El Paso County Public Health as a healthy environment planner when Stacy and I met. Like I said, had been on sort of the backside of it, encouraging and advocating from the background and decided it was time to be part of the part of the process.
Joe: I kind of asked my clients these a lot but I’m always curious about the answer that people give, but if you were to describe your business to a five-year-old who might see all grocery stores with the same? How would you describe your business to that child to makes sense of it?
Stacy: I don’t know if this is a way — Aubrey as child that’s not nearing five, but closer to five. We have a family that shops with us, the mom, dad and a young child, he’s about three. He used to build gas stations with his Legos and now he’s building bread and butters with his Legos. That tells me something really special in that it feels like a place where people belong. It feels a place that people aren’t overwhelmed or intimidated by… I know those aren’t words that I would use with a five year. It’s a place where you can go and find good food and you meet your friends there. It’s bright and clean and it’s a happy place. It’s easy to find. I don’t know what else would –
Aubrey: First and foremost we are a grocery store. We try to do that really well and make it a more enjoyable experience. That’s a food store. I grew up reading Richard scary books. In every Richard scary book there’s a grocer. Kid, I don’t think I really processed it, but I read it to my daughter now. I’m like that’s like mommy. She’s out there sweeping the sidewalk, or it’s got the fruit stand out in front or she’s stocking inside. It gives me a lot of pride that my daughter loves to come to the store to be there. She looks around and sees the food and pulls things off the shelf that I never would have brought home. I think it just instills in her community more so than our previous shopping experiences.
Joe: Well, yeah. The fact that you said it’s an enjoyable experience, I think is a distinguishing mark and most grocery shopping experiences for sure –
Stacy: I don’t think it fits your description of a five year to my understanding, but one of the things that Aubrey and I want to be able to do and to make sure that people associate with us is really excellent service. You don’t always feel like you might be able to access that in a really large store, but in a smaller space, we can talk to people about the product that they’ve just picked up and why they picked it up and they know where it comes from. Did you know that Travers city is the cherry capital of the United States and they’re the best cherries you can… All of these different things, there was a gentleman in the store the other day who had met with Aubrey about a specific bourbon. He wanted, we also have a liquor store attached to the grocery store and he came back and it was there.
His wife had called to ask about a particular type of squash. We happened to have it and they don’t live nearby, but they were so excited. He came down he said, I have to tell you, he said, “Customer service is a lot like unicorns, people talk about it, but you don’t really see.” And he said, “You guys have won me over. I’ll be back and believe me, you’re not nearby, but I’ll be back.” It was just really affirming to know that we could make a difference in their day by just doing what we set out to do.
Aubrey: one other element of it that I think is good for at least my children to see is that it’s just wholesome hard work and doing something that… Everybody needs food. I feel blessed that I like to go to work every day and she can see that in me. It just permeates in so many different ways.
Joe: Yeah, for sure. Yeah. I have a lot of visions. We’re talking about the grocery store on Sesame Street’s. That was just the place that I wanted to go to as a kid and hang out. I just had no experiences like that either. To see the same shop owner and all the things are in the right place. You can know what to find. It wasn’t unmanageable. It was very well organized and very easy to navigate. I think all those things… Of course I would articulate that as a five-year-old, but I understand what was desirable about that place now.
Aubrey: We worked with the Design Rangers on our branding and web presence. They’re very good at sort of pulling out your vision and after we had spent the day with them, that’s exactly what they referenced with the grocery store on Sesame street. That’s what they saw.
Joe: Yeah. A very complimentary too. Yeah. Just had a great field to, for sure. What do you think you provide the most for people? I’ve heard a few things in there, we’ve got a community space. I think there’s even the health attributes of good quality food that probably doesn’t have a long shelf life intended to be sort of used in a short amount of time, come back and can get some more, there’re other things as well. What’s probably your greatest provision for the community? Is what you provide out of your space?
Stacy: Well, we try to be a real grocery store. I think sometimes people are surprised when they come in and they say, Oh my gosh, you have so much selection. I think we want to be able to provide people a place to really shop. One of my greatest memories so far of this experience was the first week we were open. There was some construction that was happening nearby. There was a man, he was older than me. I’m in my fifties. You could tell he’d been working outside all day and he had in his hand a basket of tomatoes and he had I think some bananas. There was a line at the register and he held up his food and he said, “I just want to show you that I’m buying produce in downtown, Colorado Springs.” I was just almost in tears. It was great. We just want to be a grocery store. I don’t Aubrey know what else…
Aubrey: Yeah. Again, first and foremost it’s food at the most very basic level. Just another option. We’re going to provide something different for somebody who lives or works close by, then to somebody who lives in a different part of town and chooses us because of the customer service or because we have some particular products that they like. For somebody who lives nearby or works nearby, we’re making their lives a little bit easier. They can walk over which is a really nice option to not have to drive. It’s a quick and easy shopping experience, it’s small footprint store. You can get in and out of there in a couple minutes, or you can spend an hour in there and really peruse, we have a lot of local products. It’s small businesses supporting other small businesses.
Just last week, some guys came in. It was their first time in the store and they were talking about how they live close by and said they’d be back. As they walked out, I saw them talking to someone out front. She came in and shopped and she came up to the register and she said, that was so fun that I got to see them. I hadn’t seen them in months especially in this time of COVID. A lot of references to missing those types of interactions that we not gotten. A lot of people are still wanting to get out and go to the grocery store and run into your friends. That kind of thing, is it’s been rewarding.
Joe: Have you been still fairly new to the community then here a couple of years? What was the thought process of why you chose where you chose? Was there a food desert there? Was there a community desert there? What were your reasons for picking that area?
Aubrey: Yeah, it had been a food desert to us coming in. There are grocery stores on the North and South ends, far ends of the downtown area. Far East and West. Typically, people were driving and leaving the community to buy groceries. Downtown partnership puts out an annual report that talks about where people are spending their money. If they’re not spending it in downtown, where are they spending it? I think it was the 2019 report showed that, within a three mile radius of the downtown center. That includes a lot of rooftops in the neighboring neighborhoods and communities, people were spending like $50 million a year outside of downtown on groceries. Even to be able to put a portion of that toward a local store.
The other part of it is our model fits sort of an urban setting quite well because it’s walkable because it’s smaller. When we first started out, we didn’t say this is going to be downtown no matter what. As things came together and as we worked through the model more and the business plan, it just made sense for it to go downtown now. Finding a place that we could afford rent. One biggest challenges that we faced in opening the store. We ended up so fortunate in the location that we’re at, not only because of the visibility and what’s happening in the new South end of downtown, but we have a parking lot. We have an incredibly supportive set of landlords and property managers. We couldn’t be luckier in that sense.
Joe: Yeah. That’s awesome. I picture people not only taking great food home from your place, but you’ve talked about community development. What do you think they take back with them that isn’t food and implement into their own homes around streets, around neighborhoods from your shop? Are you able to give them from that capacity?
Stacy: That’s an interesting question.
Aubrey: It’s a big question.
Stacy: We had a woman shopping this morning. She said my daughter and her fiancé had been here for two months. For two months they’ve been cooking and she said they had to leave to go back to college. She said and now I have to shop and cook but I found all kinds of things here that I can do for myself, which I thought was really… She wasn’t overwhelmed. She knew she was going to miss the experience but the fact that she came to our store to Floyd, that she can now prepare food for she and her husband. It was good to hear her say that.
In some ways we also provide just a way to make things less overwhelming and less frightening. Simple things like putting together a meal kit each week with a recipe that’s really simple. We put all the ingredients together that you need and we can hand you a bag and you can walk out the door. Thing’s going to be too hard to do. I don’t know if that’s taking back to the community? Your question is really interesting.
Joe: Yeah. It’s probably hard to really articulate because you probably are saying, we may not always get that information back from those people. I can see so much to just instilling within people. I can just imagine my own, those positive experiences you have as an exchange with a person in a place like that. That feeds your soul feeds, your spirit allows you to go implement, give more to the world just in that little experience, more so than head down, pushing your shopping cart. No, not looking at anybody else, that thing.
Aubrey: To get quite a few people coming in saying that they heard about us on next door or from a neighbor. People are talking about it, which is interesting, right. I don’t know what specifically necessarily that they’re talking about, but they’re talking about it. It leaves an impression in some way or another and that’s willing to share about it. Word of mouth is our best marketing tool. This point –
Stacy: We can afford it.
Joe: Just a couple more questions. Obviously last year was crazy for everybody. Are you able to kind of be in a place where you’re able to dream big for the future? Do you have some aspirations of where you want to go going forward or are you sort of just keep things up and running at this point?
Aubrey: I think we are dreaming of a mask less experience where people can linger, hug and not feel so concerned about being close together. It really to take shape as that community space already is a little bit, even within the confines of the pandemic. To see it really flourish is going to be really beautiful.
Stacy: I do think Aubrey and I we have visions of other phases of this. People have asked us all lots of questions about what do you want to do next? Are you going to deal online this? Will you offer such and such… We want to do what we’re doing right now really well and dial that in to perfection. Then we can move on to maybe something else. For now, phase one to phase 100 is right where we are.
Joe: Yeah. I think that’s a great thing. I know that’s my own challenge personally, is sometimes not breathing in the moment and I’m always onto the next thing or dreaming about the next thing. My struggle sometimes is to just take in and focus on what’s in front of me versus always dreaming for the next thing. I think that’s awesome.
Just two more questions. I think you’re somewhat fairly new into this game, but as you were to reflect back on maybe those early thoughts as really visions of creating this business, maybe as a way to help other entrepreneurs, maybe those who haven’t started their business or are still struggling through their own operations. What would you tell yourself as you reflect back on who that person was and the experiences you’ve gained today. What would you go back and wish that person Knew? That person be your younger self not another entrepreneur, but just what you would have loved to tell yourself back then?
Aubrey: Well, my first thought when you first posed the question was, how powerful it is just to articulate your vision and just putting it out there to the universe. Stacy talks about the book The Alchemist. When you step forward on your dream, the doors begin to open for you and it’s going to be bumpy and there’s no way to tell a person that they have to go through it themselves. There’s no way to know how crazy it is until you’ve gone through it yourself. Bad enough, it’s worth the ride.
Stacy: The one thing that I have found… We had an entrepreneur, small business owner tell us this when we were kind of doing our research and it’s just proven so true for me is that he said, it’s so much more fun to do this work with someone than by yourself. I thought, imagined trying to do this work. I wouldn’t ever be doing it by myself. It really is just so magical that Aubrey and I met one another. We had the same vision and we couldn’t be two completely different people because of what Audrey can bring and because of what I can bring, it just works. I can’t do what she does as well as she does. There are things that I do that Aubrey probably wouldn’t want to do. For whatever reason it works.
I think sometimes younger people, not me today, but me as a younger person saying out loud that I can’t do everything like something you should never say. It really is very comforting at my age. It’s just fine for me to be able to say, I can’t do that. They also do that because they can do that better than I can. It’s worked really well.
Joe: That’s great. That’s awesome. I think that good balance of skill sets and compliments to each other. That’s a great pairing for sure. Your business, I think are just so much a part of the Colorado Springs business community because you’re really planted in the neighborhoods. What do you enjoy most about being part of that business community?
Stacy: It’s a very supportive network. Folks do really want to help each other. I think because they’ve been through it, they know. Maybe because we’re a really big small town. There’s not quite as competitive in nature as I imagine there being another communities and much more an environment of support. You got this, you can do it and I’m here to provide what I can, the experience that we had.
Aubrey: Yeah, we found it to be a really supportive network. I think because, being sort of the nature of Colorado Springs, and not being too big a city, it’s not overly competitive. It’s more of a root for your buddy kind of thing. In a way that’s valuable, and really sharing ideas and connections, and we couldn’t have done it without… We met with several small business owners, many small business owners, in the process of getting started, and that really helped us hone what was going to work.
Joe: That’s awesome. Awesome. Well, thanks so much for this interview for sure, but more than that just what you’re doing for the community and in the neighborhoods downtown for the people there, and all that you’re providing. The known things that you know that you’re providing people, and the unknown things that people are taking home with them, and what they’re able to give back to the others around them. So thank you so much for all you guys are doing. I really appreciate it.
Stacy: Well, thank you, Joe.
Aubrey: Yeah. It’s ultimately our pleasure.
Stacy: We thank you for what you’re doing, it’s an important job being the storyteller for others, so thank you for doing that.
Joe: Oh, it’s my honor. I get so much satisfaction out of it for sure, to hear your story and be inspired by what you’re doing and we’re kind of linking arms and cheering each other on I think, which is great.
Joe: Awesome. Thanks again.
Stacy: Thanks. Be safe.
Aubrey: Thank you, Joe.
Shannon: You’ve been listening to the Metaphorically Speaking podcast. At Keyhole Marketing, we tell big stories for small businesses. If you’re in the Colorado Springs area and ready to tell your business story, we’d love to come alongside you and help you with your content, branding, SEO, social media, or photography needs. For an instant glimpse at your current marketing strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities, take our free marketing assessment at keyholemarketing.us/marketing-assessment, or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know how we can help tell your story.