In the season of gratitude, Dwayne and I are thankful to have a thriving business for 12 years. It is not unknown to us that 50% of businesses will not make it past 10 years, so we feel especially blessed to be going strong and growing. Our business, which we started out of passion and a desire to create beautiful, functional, lasting outdoor furniture, has sustained us for over a decade and given us the ability to provide for our family. It has provided us with a creative outlet for building art and enhancing lives. It has also provided the flexibility we needed to raise our family and to take some fun and unusual family “work-cations.” These trips included delivering furniture to the Best Western Pioneer in Lusk, Wyoming where our daughters enjoyed the salt water pool, all while teaching them a strong work ethic.
At Stone 2 Furniture, the saying “it takes a village” could not be more true. We did not build this business alone; from the beginning we have had the support of family and friends. When Jill’s Dad, Henry Cywka, was alive he was the chief hub puller. He would go to the junk yards and pull hubs off of old cars. We used the reclaimed hubs in the making of the swivel chairs. His contribution was invaluable and we sorely miss him. Jill’s sister, Jennifer, can also always be counted on to jump in and help with mailings or a special marketing program. And her mom, Lucy, would watch the girls when they were little.
Dwayne’s Mom, Arlene, and our two daughters Riely and Cailey are on the editing team. The newsletter would not be possible without them. Riely and Cailey also help with light office work and creative ideas. Dwayne’s mom, Arlene, can also be counted on for creative ideas and support. She is the one that suggested the name Mirrorrock for our new line of artistically hand crafted stone. Zach, Dwayne’s son, can be called on to help with a local delivery or to do welding when big orders need to get out. We are so thankful to have family that love, support and help out when we need them. We are truly blessed.
And we couldn’t have come this far without our friends. From the beginning, we have had special friends that have provided support and guidance and have helped us figure out how to build this business and make it profitable. Our artist friends are always willing to share tips and tricks on how to market our furniture, on what shows are good to attend and which ones we should steer clear of. All of our friends help us stay strong during the challenging times. They support us in staying successful and not stressing out about the ups and downs of running our own business. And sometimes, our friends jump in and actually help us build furniture. Our friend Jerry, who passed away from cancer several years ago, helped Dwayne make our signature tables, The Wine Buddies.
Our coach, Rachelle, is also a part of our business. She helps support us in all our endeavors and offers us great counseling. We are grateful for her contributions.
We are also grateful for you, our wonderful clients that have made this all possible. Throughout the years, we have been blessed to work with the greatest people providing them with outdoor furniture and art that compliments and enhances the beauty of their living spaces. We want you to know that we appreciate seeing you at our shows, the referrals that you give us, your reading the newsletter and purchasing our furniture and art. Your support is what makes us able to keep on doing what we love.
There is a village that makes this business possible: we value each and everyone one of you, our family, friends and clients. We are thankful.