choosing joy messy middle podcast Season 6

Marsha Flowers of Five Blessings Candles on Creating “Happiness in The Form of A Flicker”


This episode’s interview is with Marsha Flowers of Five Blessings Candles in Leavenworth, Kansas. She’s been an entrepreneur for years, making candles and creating “Happiness in a Flicker” with unique scents and joyful names. She has had both a brick and mortar version of her business, and she is now all online.

Marsh and her sister, Lori Palmer, began pouring candles in their garages in 1993, to make a little money while their kids were small. Four years later, the business had grown to the point that Marsha opened a storefront in Weston, MO to market their hand-poured candles. The original name was Two Blessings. As they added “blessings”, also known as children, they changed their business name with each child and finally landed on Five Blessings Candleworks.

My family and I used to visit her shop each year in Weston, Kansas when we visited my parents in Kansas City. It was a real treat to get to catch up with Marsha and hear all that she had to say about starting her business, how she’s found joy in the messy middle, and what we all can do to establish new traditions this holiday season.

Joy in the Messy Middle

Marsha has found joy in the messy middle in different ways, many of them being the small serendipitous moments that have a great impact in her life. At one point she was feeling stuck around finding the right box for a dozen candles, and that same day she discovered a take out food box that would fit 12 candles perfectly. She has so many stories of this same kind of thing that she shares, and that show how the universe is co-conspiring with us to make our dreams come true. 

Here’s what Marsha has to say about the messy middle:

“The messy middle is just as important as the good as the parts that aren’t messy. It’s just as important. There’s something in there you’re supposed to learn or something in there you’re supposed to change. There’s something in there that you’re supposed to appreciate and value. And maybe something to let go.”

Marsha and I talk about:

  • Her earliest sparks of joy: playing as the candlemaker
  • How she and her sister started making candles and began their entrepreneurial 
  • Why Marsha left the business for a bit, and why she’s back
  • Going from brick and mortar to online sales (and why that’s great during COVID)
  • The magic that’s happened along the way to discovering the pieces that have made her business work
  • Ways to make the holidays feel a little merrier this year, even during COVID
  • Her favorite scents and how she makes and names them

Resources

Marsha Flower’s Five Blessing Candles Website

5B and Co on Instagram

Transcript

Paula:  This week on Jump Start Your Joy, I’m really excited to have Marsha Flowers of Five Blessings Candles joining me. Welcome to the show, Marsha.

Marsha:  Thank you. It’s great to be here.

Paula:  I am so delighted to have this conversation. The first question that I ask everybody is would you tell us about what you loved most as a child or in school, what were your earliest sparks of joy?

Marsha:  This is really funny. My sister and I, to this day, joke about this. You know the nursery rhyme, The Butcher, The Baker, The Candlestick Maker, remember that nursery rhyme?

Paula:  Yes.

Marsha:  We would get in knock down drag out fights over who got to be the candlestick maker. As we were using our imagination and playing, “No, you’re the butcher,” and she’d say, “No, I’m the candlestick maker.” It’s really ironic to me that I knew that at 3, I was already labeling myself. She’s a candlestick maker, too. It’s just funny to me that we used to fight over that when I look back on that. Had I ended up being a physician or something, then there’s not a rhyme. Here we are.

Lawrence, Kansas is just such a little hippy town. There was a gentleman in Lawrence, his name is Bob Werts, and he owns a company called Waxman Candles. I think he began in 1972 or something like that. He came to my kindergarten class and we made candles. I just caught the bug then. It went away for a while growing up, but it definitely planted seeds of what I was going to do later on in life.

I’m happy that I’m able to create something that started so long ago. Both of my nieces are really good athletes and I asked, “How did you know what you were good at when you were 3?” But then I thought, wait a minute, I kind of knew what I was good at in kindergarten. So, that’s kind of where I’m at with all of that.

Paula:  There was a fight over the rhyme. That is really amazing.

Marsha:  Who wants to be the butcher? A close second is baker. I can see where baker would be good. Nobody wants to be the butcher. There’s people that do, but not me, I don’t want to be the butcher.

Paula:  That is so funny. It’s interesting to hear people’s answer to that question. I don’t know if I’ve ever really shared this too much, but my friends and my sister and I used to do a fake radio show on our tape recorder. My dad also would record himself and send tapes off to his cousin. So, I can see that there’s that nugget of things, even for myself, way back when. It’s the thing that I played at, but I wouldn’t have guessed that’s where I was headed.

Marsha:  It does help to connect you to that childlike joy of it. I look back and think, “Hey, you thought about doing this. Come on.” It helps you see the seeds, is how I would describe it, it was planted early. I wonder how many people had them planted early that aren’t paying attention to what they’re doing now and how that’s tied in.

Paula:  Yes. There’s that thing of some people really just do know that they want to be a doctor, and then there’s a very linear path often to going that route. Then there’s other things that are more of a creative nature or have an entrepreneurial bit to them, and we don’t all get the teachings or the direction of how do you do that or how do you start that as we go through school, that’s just not a similar thing.

Marsha:  Right. At the same time, pay attention to what you know you didn’t want to do.

Paula:  Right.

Marsha:  I knew I didn’t want to slaughter animals, so that wasn’t playing into it.

Paula:  That’s amazing. Yes. You own a candle making business, Five Blessings Candles. You have a very interesting beginning, after kindergarten, of how you started your business. Could you share a little bit about how the journey began?

Marsha:  Totally. My sister and I started making candles. We actually had a little booth at this crafter’s mall in Kansas City called Comer’s Crafter’s Mall. I’d have to double check with her on the name. We bought candles at wholesale and set them up in this booth. The crafter’s mall had these little sections, where this lady made potholders, this lady made macramé, this gentleman did photography.

We were buying candles from a gal in Texas wholesale and then selling them retail at our booth. This was in 1993. The internet wasn’t available the way it is now. We just started tinkering around with it.

Now you can go online and buy candle supplies. We didn’t even know where to buy candle supplies at that point. There’s a thing called The Thomas Register, it’s a library, and it basically lists out manufacturers. I would go in there and try to find someone that made bulk amounts of wax, candle dyes, fragrances, and all of those things.

We were completely just self-taught. At the time, we had Two Blessings; my sister had a child and I had a child. Then every time we were blessed with a child, we went to Three Blessings, Four Blessings, Five Blessings, which the guy that made my sign at the shop really got a kick out of, because he made a fortune changing our name at the store.

I ruined the kitchen with dye. The process was just, everything you change in a candle. If you change the temperature, it changes the look. If you change the width, it changes the burn. If you change the fragrance load, it changes the scent. It was just a lot of trial and error, which I am so thankful for, because I don’t take for granted the process. I also totally am self-taught, so I can say that our product is a little bit different than other candlemakers that just learned watching a YouTube video. So, I’m very thankful for the process.

It was maybe a year of us tinkering around with it. We spent hours on the phone, “Should we try this?” For example, it says to use a tiny bit of dye. I’m in my kitchen at the time and I thought, “That probably means a tablespoon.” Literally, when they say tiny bit of dye, it means maybe a drop. I remember getting yellow dye on my hands and yellow dye on my phone, which was attached to the wall, yellow dye on the wallpaper. It just doesn’t come out.

We learned the hard way, but we also learned the very appreciative way of making candles. So, there’s that.

Paula:  I love that. There is something really cool about taking your time or, in some cases, being invited into taking your time, because there is no other way to figure it out.

Marsha:  I think if someone shows it to you, you don’t appreciate it without going through the trial and error. I think if it’s just shown to you, you think, “That’s an easy process.” Really, it wasn’t. Really it was a big deal to get this figured out. I know it’s not brain surgery. I know all of that. But it definitely makes you appreciate the process, for sure.

There’s a gal pouring in my studio right now, and one of the big things I say to people when I’m teaching them how to pour is everybody makes cookies, and the cookies have chocolate chips, flour, and sugar, but everybody does it a little differently.

Just because you do it differently, as long as the product ends up with the same integrity, then we’re good. I’m going to show you a lot of things that can’t change, like the temperature, they have to be poured at this temperature, but go ahead and add your little flare to it.

As long as it’s consistent, I’m fine with it. It’s like having someone else in your kitchen. Just because you do it a little differently, doesn’t mean it’s right or wrong. But I’m also telling you that there are things that you can’t change, like the temperature, the amount of dye you put in, the amount of fragrance you put in, things like that. I know what to use, there’s just a process.

Paula:  That’s beautiful in its own way, because I’m sure then there’s a little bit of an ownership of the end product, of I’m part of this creative process. You’re honoring that it’s a creative process.

Marsha:  Absolutely.

Paula:  Then in the end the love that comes out in the product is probably amplified completely.

Marsha:  It’s funny you should say that, because I won’t let people pour unless they’re in a good mood, which sounds so hokey. I remember I had a gal come in and she had some absolutely traumatic things happening in her life and I was like, “You can’t pour today. You’re crying. I don’t want that showing up in my candle. I’ll still pay you, but go home.”

I’m so appreciative of it that you have to be thankful and in a good place when you’re pouring them. You just have to be.

I’ve had times in my life that I wasn’t necessarily in a good place, and I think it showed in my product. For example, my divorce. It was kind of like walking through quicksand to make a candle. That’s because I wasn’t in a good frame of mind where I was. So, I make sure that I am at this point. I want that happiness to go home in a flicker to everybody.

Paula:  I think that’s really honoring joy. When we look at the basis of the show, knowing that sometimes and in some places, it does make good sense to make sure that you’re aligned and in a good place, just in general. I think that’s super interesting. I very much try and approach every angle of this show in a very similar way. I make sure I’m doing my show notes when I’m in a good frame of mind. I make my images when I’m feeling into this. It does make a difference.

Marsha:  A huge difference. Huge. Don’t fight it. If you’re not in the frame of mind, wait for it to come. It will. It always does. It will come back. If you’re not in that happy joyous spot, then just lay low for a bit. It will come back.

Paula:  I think there’s something about honoring what do I need in this moment, like I’m not into it, but a walk outside would really feel good because why not.

Marsha:  Yes. My biggie is the movie Waitress. It’s one of my favorites. If I’m in a bad mood, I can watch Waitress and I’m immediately in a much better mood. That works pretty good. But, yes, go through the process to get there. Honor it, get there, and plow on.

Paula:  I will often listen to boy band music when I’m trying to just get out of the place. So, I get it. I love this so much.

Would you tell us more, I’m really interested and this really ties into the creative process… I should back this up a little bit for the listeners. You come up with some really interesting and very creatively named scents for your candles.

Marsha:  Yes. There’s I’m the Boss, Applesauce, Clean Undies, with Very Clean Laundry Scent. When we started, there weren’t unique scented candles. There was cinnamon apple, cinnamon vanilla, vanilla. Those classic grandma fragrances have kind of made a comeback. I think people are really longing for the days when it was just cinnamon apple, those days that were just so simple. But fragrances are very much like fashion, some go out of style and some come back.

There was a fragrance I did just by accident, and it went totally wrong, and it ended up smelling just like marijuana, so I named this candle Puff the Magic Dragon. It was quite popular, but I could not find the time to pour it, because I was making all of downtown historic Weston smell like marijuana. I had to finally give it up.

Half the fun is making the scent and then naming the scent. I’ve made scents before that had maybe the wrong name and they didn’t do well, but then the minute I tinkered with the name it did much better. It’s kind of a whole package thing, it needs to be the right name and the right scent.

Paula:  How do you come up with the scents? Is it tinkering and you come up with something? Or do you go in thinking, “I really wish that I could create something that smells like fresh laundry,” and you go after it? How do you approach it?

Marsha:  A lot of it is I’m just going off of memory. For example, a perfect story is there was a fragrance I bought called White Mountain Sage. Sage is supposed to release negativity and all of that stuff. I’m pouring it and my memory in my mind immediately goes to my aunt’s funeral, and I’m probably 8-years-old, digging in my mom’s purse for a stick of gum. I could never get a full piece of gum, she would split it in half, and there was usually bits stuck to it and Kleenex. Anyway, I’m pouring this candle and thinking, “This smells like the bottom of my mom’s purse,” so I named it The Bottom of My Mom’s Purse.

I can tell you universally everybody that smells that candle says, “You’re right. That smells like the bottom of my mom’s purse.” It doesn’t matter their age, nothing, everybody says that. Had I named that candle White Mountain Sage, meh, okay. But name it the Bottom of Mom’s Purse, and I watched it millions of times throughout the year, people picking it up, sniffing it, and saying, “That is the bottom of my mom’s purse.” It’s really White Mountain Sage, but everybody’s mom’s purse smells like that.

Paula:  It’s magical. There’s something really interesting in here. You’re connecting a memory with scent, and scents are one of our most powerful memory connectors. If I come across my grandmother’s perfume, I’m 3. There’s no way I cannot snap back to a really powerful moment.

Marsha:  Absolutely. Good and bad. It definitely takes you back to different scenarios or different memories, for sure. I remember a gentleman that came in the store and he started tearing up, and he said, “This smells like my late wife.” Just things like that, it’s so emotional. Scents are so emotional. But it needs a good name, too. It needs a really good name. That’s the fun part.

Paula:  I think that’s the nudge of the joy of it. For listeners, I’ve had the joy of visiting the shop several times. Marsha lives in Kansas, and my parents used to live in Kansas City, so I would visit and we would happen to make a road trip out to her shop and out to another little town nearby. It was such a treat to be able to have the whole experience. To meet you, to meet the person making the candles was fascinating and a treat.

Marsha:  Thank you.

Paula:  Then the way you had it laid out, just for listeners, each of the candles would be in a little votive and you could pull it and sniff each of them. It really was kind of fun to see what you had named it and then be like, “Yeah, you got that one.” It was really amazing.

Marsha:  Right. I loved the people that would come in the store and go, “I hate patchouli. I can’t stand patchouli. Patchouli is horrible.” I would walk up to them with something that had patchouli in it and say, “Why don’t you sniff this magnolia?” They would say, “I love that.” Ha, ha, it’s patchouli. Don’t categorize what you hate, because you may not.

The sniff from the cup has an interesting story. When I first opened, you could not smell anything in my store, absolutely nothing in my store. I was distraught, because I made them all in the back, of course. I was totally distraught.

I’ll never forget, this guy, you know how God sends people your way, he comes in my store. I was like, “Sir, I wish you could smell something, but you can’t smell anything. I’ve been pouring candles and there are just too many smells in here.” He ended up being a KU professor and he told me, “Honey, you need to put them in individual cups. It’s like walking a locker room and you know it stinks, but you don’t know who smells which way.”

He probably saved my business. So, I went and put them all in individual little cups and instructed everybody that came in to sniff from the cups so that they could actually smell what was what. It worked perfectly.

Paula:  That’s fascinating.

Marsha:  I think of him all the time. When the story comes up, I’m like I wish I could find him and say thank you, 30 years later, I still am indebted to you for showing me that.

Although now we are exclusively online, which I’m thankful for because it would gross me out to have everybody sniff from the cup right now. I don’t want to watch people do that right now. Maybe someday again, but not right now. I can honestly say that every candle I send you via online hasn’t had any other noses on it, which is a good thing.

Paula:  You kind of referenced this, that you no longer have a storefront. What has that been like for you to move from being somebody that is really front and center, and involved, and in the shop, greeting people, to go online and change up a business completely?

Marsha:  I’ll tell you what. The first thing that screamed bloody murder was my ego. I literally spent all day being kind of the center of attention. Now I’m like, “Okay, I’ll go make some candles.” I had to do a little soul searching of what I’m still doing as a value.

The other thing that happened a little bit with retail is you would put your success on what the register showed. That’s not necessarily your success. That’s not necessarily a successful day. There’s so much more to it than that. Frankly, it’s a little shallow to just go, “I had a money-making day.” That really wasn’t why I started doing it and it’s not why I do it.

But, at first, I was like no one is laughing at all my jokes, I’m calling talk radio for someone to talk to. I missed it very much at first. I missed it very much. Then I went, “No. The reason this happened this way is,” at the time, my adult son needed hip surgery and I was there for him.

That was the whole reason I went into business for myself, to be there for people in my circle that needed me. My grandson was born here – I have four in Georgia and I have one here in the Kansas City area – and I was able to spend a lot of time with him. That really is truly why I chose doing what I do this way, so I could be there for my kids and my family.

It’s like having a toddler. Even when you’re away from the store, you’re thinking about the store. It’s just a lot. This is really good for right now.

Paula:  I have to underline what you just said about how retail sometimes you can get wound up in measuring success by what the register is reading. We have a lot of people that listen that are online coaches or entrepreneurs of some sort, that mostly are online, and we get so hung up on followers and downloads, and all those numbers. I started talking about the idea of playing small and getting really focused on the thing that matters. I feel like there is a definitely a parallel to that.

I love that you said that. That is what you touched back into, it’s the why. Why did I go into this? It wasn’t for the register. It was so that you could spend time with the people that you love and be there for them in a meaningful way. Thank you. That’s so good. That’s really delicious.

Marsha:  Thank you. It is. It’s genuine. You’re touching on that, I do the same thing. We talked a little bit about how horrible I am at social media. I catch myself thinking, “Only 11 people liked that. What’s wrong with that?” There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s absolutely perfect. You can’t calibrate it to that.

Paula:  So true. This is running on Thanksgiving and I’m really excited. Thank you for being on.

Marsha:  Thank you.

Paula:  I’m delighted to share it, because over Thanksgiving we would always go to visit my parents in Kansas City, and oftentimes the day before or the day after, we would be in Weston and we would get to see your shop. That was really part of a tradition that was anchored in something that was a family event, a road trip, and a fun thing to do with the family all together. So, thank you for being on today and sharing that day with me in a new way.

Marsha:  You’re welcome. How cool is it to be a part of people’s memories by just what you create? If you think about it, birthdays have candles, weddings have candles, there are so many celebrations that have candles. I absolutely love thinking about how my product is impacting people’s lives that way, as happy memories, or sad memories.

For example, today I got an online order for someone whose beloved cat has passed away and they were sending a condolence package to the people who lost their pet. I thought what an honor that I, in my own little way, can send them something that cheers them up a bit. And to be there for you guys for Thanksgiving, in a weird way. I wasn’t there for your Thanksgiving by any sense, but to be there for your memories is just really cool.

Paula:  There is something, it’s that connection again of memory and scent. I can go back to a place – this might even make me tear up a little bit – where my family is all together, just by the scent. One of my favorites, as I mentioned, was I’m the Boss, Applesauce, which is delicious.

When I burn it, especially right now when I cannot be, at least our family has not ‘bubbled’ together in that way. I cannot be with them in the same way, but yet there’s a memory of a time when we could all hug or dogpile on the couch, or whatever it is. I think there’s that really interesting space of the memory and the scent, there’s a very visceral response to it.

Marsha:  Yes. A funny story is my dad was a barber at Stadium Barbershop in the 1960s in Lawrence, Kansas, which no one had their hair cut ever in the 1960s in Lawrence, but I have a scent called Stadium Barbershop and it smells just like his barbershop. They’re just memories. Being able to be a part of that and help people with those memories is really cool.

Paula:  What kinds of traditions do you either enjoy on Thanksgiving or are you guys trying out anything new this year since we’re kind of all in a weird space of being at a little more distance than we would like?

Marsha:  It’s funny. My husband adores Christmas. He likes to walk in the house and it literally look like Christmas has thrown up everywhere in our house. Having been for years in retail, we’re a blended family, Jack and I have been together for 10 years, married for six, so he missed all my retail years where literally after I decorated the shop, by the time I got home I was like I don’t want to decorate here.

So, my children remember this plastic Christmas tree that had glitter that swirled in it that I would just put on the coffee table and turn it on and go, “Christmas is done,” that type of thing. One year it broke. My daughter searched high and low everywhere for a duplicate of this Christmas tree. This year I’m going to be able to make a big production and set it out and go, “Look, it’s Christmas, the tree is here.” That’s one of the things we’re going to do. It’s funny. But we’ll still have the rest of the over-the-top decorations going on as well.

I think that’s important this year. Even if you’re just going to be home by yourself, with very few people around you, just go through the motions of Christmas. Just do it. I know it’s going to be kind of hard to do and kind of hard to accomplish with the vibe all over the place, but I think it’s important for us to feel and smell Christmas this year, and Thanksgiving. Let’s just push through and do it. Kind of like exercising, let’s just do it.

I’m pouring Christmas now. We’re pouring Frasier Fir as I speak. I usually wait to pour a few of my favorites. I have one called Baby Jesus, which is baby powder. Psalm 45:8 talks about how his robes are anointed in aloe, cassia, and myrrh. Anyway, I take those three scents (aloe, cassia, and myrrh,) add baby powder, and call it Baby Jesus. I purposely won’t let myself pour that until the day after Thanksgiving, because then to me it’s Christmas now.

Paula:  Wow. That’s amazing and cool.

Marsha:  That candle without the baby powder is called Glory. That candle has been a very emotional candle for people, the scent of Christ.

Paula:  I do love what you’ve just said about really almost allowing ourselves the holidays. It almost feels like it’s a permission thing. I don’t know if that’s true. We can still enjoy this. Maybe everyone does have one thing that it’s the holidays now.

We break out our water globe of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and it’s started. I feel like there’s something, like you said, go through the motions of it and allow yourself to experience it and see those things, because there’s a connection through to years past when things were different.

Marsha:  How many years did we spend doing it for everybody else? This year we have the opportunity to do it just for us. I’m going to decorate the house just for my husband and I, where in years past I did it because the in-laws were coming or we had a Christmas party, things that we may not be doing this year. In a kind of selfish way, let’s do it just for us.

Paula:  I like that a lot. Maybe it’s also thinking about what are the small things that would make it feel more joyful or more connected just for you. Like you’re saying, not for anybody else. What does this celebration and this season mean to you? What could you be grateful for today and what do you want to bring forth into your world right now so that the rest of the year is amazing or happier?

Marsha:  Right. I think that is one thing COVID has taught us is the importance of things. It was really easy to just be in the rat race of it all. It has made us slow down and really appreciate things. I haven’t been able to see my parents, and I want to see them. I’m not going to take it for granted when I do.

Maybe that’s the lesson in all of this is that we slow down and realize what’s important. I have to look at it that way, or I go into a big funk. There has to be something we’re learning here. There has to be something.

Paula:  I have a friend who just lost her father. She said it was a lot more emotional. He had been sick for a long time. She said, “There wasn’t anything to do, but I could feel everything shifting and everything was changing, even though there was nothing for me to do. It was all settling different.”

That idea of this time feels like that to me. There’s not a lot to do. I don’t even know what to make of most of what is happening.

Marsha:  Absolutely.

Paula:  Where I can see action to take, I do. But it’s also like I can feel everything is changing, too. It’s a bizarre time.

Marsha:  Right. It is.

Paula:  One of the things that I love to ask people this year, I don’t know if you have a time that you can think of or wisdom around this piece, but is there a time or a place that you’ve found yourself in the messy middle?

Marsha:  Yes.

Paula:  How did you either find your way out of it, or were there things in the midst of it that looking back you could see as a lesson learned?

Marsha:  Yes. Messy middle to me is just as important as the good times. When God gives you something that is your purpose, that is completely 100%, 1,000% gift from Him.

I have a story about I needed a box that would hold 12 candles. The kids were little, they were 4 and 5. I’m going through a drive-through. I woke up that morning saying, “Lord, I know you’re busy, but I need a box that will hold 12 candles.” We go through a fried chicken place and they hand us a drumstick and a biscuit, and that box will exactly hold 12 candles. Exactly. I pulled back around the drive-through and said, “Where do you guys get your boxes? I need these boxes.”

This entire process for me has been so anointed and a gift from God. Even the little things that I needed to know, He helped me out with, the little tiny things. To me, the messy middle is when God is saying, “Let this part go,” which is just as important as when He is saying, “I am giving you this gift.” That’s where we kind of balk at it a little bit, the messy middle, “Well, we’ve always done it this way.” No. It’s supposed to change. This is a gift from God that is always going to change.

It’s always going to change. It’s not like a gift from someone else. Say someone gives you a vase. It’s going to stay the same forever. Anything I find that comes from heaven and from God changes constantly. That’s where we get our little nuggets of faith. Yesterday He gave me this, but today it’s different. I’m going to have faith that you’re going to change that into something even better. Right?

I’m going to start crying.

Paula:  Me too.

Marsha:  That’s the thing to me. The messy middle is just as important as the parts that aren’t messy. It’s just as important. There’s something in there that you’re supposed to learn. There’s something in there that you’re supposed to change. There’s something in there that you’re supposed to appreciate and value, and maybe let go.

Paula:  That’s really deep. I think the human spirit so very much wants to fight against impermanence, like we want everything to just be the same. We would love that. And that’s not how it is, ever. I think that’s kind of the existential question of how do we accept impermanence even though we want everything to stay the same, and then looking to the bigger why.

Marsha:  Right. Change is scary. I am such a creature of habit. Are you kidding me? I have the same flannel fuzzy pajamas that I bring every day it gets cold. I like the same. That is the biggest thing as I get older, and hopefully a little wiser, is just to realize that the only constant is change and just to embrace that as much as the everyday ins and outs of things.

Paula:  Thank you. Oh my goodness. That was so good. Of course, it is Thanksgiving, so we’re entering into this season of giving. I’m really drawn this year to looking for gifts for the holiday season that are from a person, an entrepreneur.

Marsha:  We appreciate that. Thank you.

Paula:  You guys have put your heart into this. What are you doing at Five Blessings for the holidays? Is there anything that you’re putting out special for the season?

Marsha:  The Christmas scents we’re doing this year are Mistletoe, Juniper Berry, Ho Ho Ho, which is cinnamon, pine, bergamot, and sage, Santa’s Whiskers, which is patchouli and ginger bread, because you know Santa is a hippy and he has cookie crumbs in his whiskers, Baby Jesus we talked about, Spiced Waffle, which is cinnamon and orange, Jingle Bells, which actually I can’t lay claim to, my fragrance guy made this one and it’s just phenomenal, and can’t forget Frasier Fir.

There’s just the scents in itself, but I’ve also found a company that takes beautiful green champagne bottles and they make it into a 12-oounce candle holder that has gone through a process called aniline, so it will withstand the heat from a flame. I’m pouring a beautiful pine Christmas scent in that, so we’ll have that jar available. It has some really good artwork on the front of it.

We’re also doing a 12-pack that’s the 12 Days of Christmas. Each little votive will have a different topper on it. So, we’re doing that as well. Our gift tubes will be wrapped in Christmas paper that I buy from a gal on Etsy that actually makes the paper. There’s a trickle down from it all. I try to make sure that everything I’m doing isn’t mass produced as well, so there’s a lot of little trickle down in it.

Paula:  I have to say that I love the tubes. Is there five votives in there?

Marsha:  Six. You can do three or six. Right now, just because everything is so funky out there, and I’ll do this through Christmas as well, I’m sure, but six votives and a votive holder is $24. I wanted to make it a very affordable price, because I’m feeling the need to just spread the cheer as much as everybody else is.

I think shipping on top of that is $7.50, so for $32.50 you have a really nice little something coming in the mail with a card that will say whatever you want. Just to king of help spread some joy. Let’s some spread some joy around here.

Paula:  Are you pouring Mary, Did You Know, is that another one of them?

Marsha:  Not yet, but we will.

Paula:  Okay. That’s definitely a favorite. That one is super good.

Marsha:  Yes. That’s a great song, too. Talk about a tearjerker. That song is a tearjerker.

Paula:  It really is. I will link up to your shop and your Instagram and all of the things. Thank you so much for being on this week. This is such a treat. Thank you for sharing and dropping so much wisdom. This has been awesome.

The last question that I love to ask everyone is what are three ways that you can think of to jump start joy in your life, in the world, or in other people’s lives?

Marsha:  The biggest thing for me, and I’m going to be a little cheerleader here, let’s share the joy. Be it via you send candles to someone that makes them happy, or anything, a plant, cookies, whatever. Let’s be little conductors of joy. Let’s try and do that.

We need to share the joy somehow. We need to up our ante here in joy. I think we can each help each other out by doing that. I really do. I think that’s pretty important right now, that we encourage and get happiness from the little stuff while everything seems so out of control.

Paula:  I like the imagery of conductors of joy, both from the being in front of an orchestra, but also the electrical version of I pass my joy to you and you pass it to the next person.

Marsha:  Right. Let’s do it. I’m going to be the biggest cheerleader this season for that. And random. I love the idea of just randomly. I really hope the Christmas spirt and the Thanksgiving spirit catches on this year. We overlooked it for so many years. Didn’t we, to a degree, as a society? I just hope it’s a magical season. I genuinely do. We can create that, we can do that, we can make that happen.

Paula:  So true.

Marsha:  Let’s do it.

Paula:  Thank you so much for being on. It’s been such a treat to have you.

Marsha:  Thank you so much. It was fun.

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