Miriam: Good morning to you.
Kristi: Good morning to you too. It is so fabulously beautiful in Florida right now. Of course we always add right now, as it will be hotter than blazes later!
Miriam: Probably not a good time to complain that it’s hot since some of our readers may still be covered in snow.
Kristi: Very True.
Miriam: This is an interesting title you chose for today. There has to be a good story behind that one.
Kristi: Well we were talking about the restaurant yesterday and it reminded me when we first opened and I was 25 years old and super excited and scared at the same time. We were the first coffee house in Winter Haven and people would come in and say, “coffee house, we are in Florida you actually think people are coming in here to buy hot coffee?”
Miriam: I remember! And what would you tell them?
Kristi: I would say, all wide eyed and excited, “We have frozen coffee too!”
Miriam: It was such a struggle for you, to get all excited about selling Lattes and people would come in and pronounce it..Lady. To look back now that’s pretty funny.
Kristi: It was horrifying at the time 😉 People would pull up and come inside and not know what to do or why were were there. They would walk in the door and I would jump up to meet them. Sometimes it scared them off!
Miriam: I know I remember the first time I saw you do that I had to tell you to curb your enthusiasm a bit and let them actually get inside the shop!
Kristi: It was so hard to sell people on the idea of a cup of coffee from a coffee house instead of Circle K. It was such a different time, No Starbucks for sure.
I remember there was a guy who opened a coffee shop shortly after we did and he would make fun of me and call me the little girl on the hill. At the time it would get me all revved up and upset. As I matured in business and as a person I realized he would make fun of me because he felt threatened, by this young whipper snapper!
Miriam: I would always try to encourage you to keep your eyes on your own path and ignore the naysayers and follow your dream no matter what anyone else said. Kristi I remember you told me the story of how you always wanted to own a coffee house since you were in high school. Well I guess you can check that one off your list!
Kristi: Yep. I remember the guy would make fun of me for selling sandwiches and wraps and would tell me to make up my mind, was I a coffee place or a restaurant. Well I guess that fact that we went on to win 13 People’s Choice Awards for everything from Best Coffee to Best Lunch, I guess that speaks for itself.
Miriam: Also that is how the Canary Island Garlic and Herb Olive Oil was reborn. We talk about it more in our first book; Shake, Splash & Eat, of how I created the olive oil so you could cook. What a blessing that his making fun of you serving food didn’t stop us. If you would have stopped making the food and tried to be just a coffee place, look what all we would have missed out on.
Kristi: Now, 20 years later Vigoa Cuisine is in full swing and we are no longer at the restaurant and are able to share our experiences with our customers and friends. Encouragement from experience allows us to turn pain to passion.
Never give up on your dreams and hopes, if there is a spark of fire in you that won’t die no matter how much you try to talk yourself out of it. Go For IT. When you truly commit yourself to your passion all the floodgates of the Universe will open up and bring you everything and everyone onto your path to light the way.
Live everyday as a miracle.
Miriam and Kristi
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