The Mix House » Blog

Since Kickstarter ended, many people have been asking…”what’s next for The Mix House?…what are you guys up to?”…and well…that’s a great question! Please don’t take our silence on social media as a bad sign by any means. In fact, if we’re silent, it means we are very hard at work! Here are some things we’ve been working on lately:

  • Meeting with Blanchard’s Coffee about getting our roasted coffee beans from them! We LOVE Blanchard’s and you can read all about our visit with them in Monday’s blog post.
  • Working on getting into the Bowling Green Farmer’s Market! We are so excited about this and you should hopefully see us there soon – stay tuned for more information.
  • Putting together your Kickstarter Rewards! If you backed us during our Kickstarter campaign then we want to thank you with a reward. Make sure you’ve filled out your survey so that we send the right things to the right address! If you didn’t receive a survey and think you should have, please click the contact us button at the top and let us know!
  • Remodeling the trailer! While the trailer or mobile bar if you will, came with a lot of equipment we needed, there were certain things which weren’t up to local health code standards. We’ve been working hard on getting all of that figured out as well as setting the layout up for what’s functional for us. We can’t wait to be in there slinging drinks all day!
  • In-home bakery permit. This is a HUGE undertaking. We’ve submitted our paperwork and are now just waiting, waiting, waiting. But, eventually we will have to do an in home health inspection so we can bake you all of our favorite recipes!!!
  • Team Meetings! We love team meetings! We get lots of work done, but we have fun doing so! Some meetings are more productive than others, but we make it a point to meet at least once a week – sometimes in person and sometimes through Skype. We catch up on what’s been done and talk about what needs to be done next.

Those are just some of the highlights of what’s been going on! In between each of those you could write “check bank account for kickstarter funds”! We still have a few more days until we are supposed to see them, but its fun to keep looking. We’ve been working on lots of boring stuff too, like health code approvals, in home bakery inspections, filling out paperwork for licenses and permits, etc. – and though boring, it’s very important!

All of this of course is being done late into the evenings, early mornings before work, and during our lunch breaks! It’s hard to work a full-time day job and come home to a full-time dream job, but so far it’s been worth it! Every single moment! We can’t wait to see what’s to come!

In the meantime, keep mixing!

This weekend was full of excitement and productivity here at The Mix House headquarters! (my living room). Jessica and I met early Saturday morning for breakfast and hit the ground running after that. Our big event this weekend was meeting with Blanchard’s! Blanchard’s is a coffee roasting company that has been roasting coffee in Richmond for 10 years now. We had several people suggest them when we started thinking about where our coffee would come from, so we decided to give it a shot! And boy, are we glad we did!

Let’s rewind a little. It has always been important to us, from day one, to serve quality products. Anybody can go buy wholesale beans online, have them shipped from who knows where, and sell them from an orange trailer. But, that’s not what we’re after. We want to serve amazing quality products, AND be able to build relationships with all of our vendors! So, ordering plain jane, low quality, cheap coffee online, just doesn’t really fit us.

So, back to Blanchard’s. Jess and I show up to this random, white brick building in the heart of Richmond. We go in to find Stephen, who is already hard at work on Saturday morning. He showed us around their space, talked about their equipment, where their green coffee comes from, and told a few stories about the farmers they work with. It was awesome to hear about the relationships they have with these farmers. Stephen listened as we explained our vision for The Mix House, where we will be located, and the people we will be serving. As he listened, he walked around this room scooping cups full of beans from these big, plastic trash cans. He explained that all of this coffee was roasted just the day before… that’s pretty fresh!

We went upstairs and Stephen began preparing four different pour overs from the beans he chose for us. He talked about each coffee, where it comes from, and what we would taste in it. I absolutely LOVE this kind of stuff. I just think there’s something so cool about the fact that I can taste a cup of coffee and say “mmmm, tastes like oranges!” And then let it sit for 10 minutes, taste it again, and say “now it tastes like toast!” I’ve learned the art of coffee tasting when I was working in the industry before, so this wasn’t totally new for me. Jess, however, has never done anything like this before. BUT, even she said she could taste these notes of different flavors! AGH! I just love coffee! (Sidenote: If that all sounded like crazy talk to you, that’s okay! Please still come visit us!!!)

We talked a bit more and Stephen shared some tips and tricks for hot and cold brew, some ideas for the farmer’s market, and some of his experiences. Jess and I left there saying YES! We love this place, and we cannot WAIT to get this coffee in the hands of The Mix House customers!!!! We came home with a few pounds of coffee to keep us fueled until we place our first big order (which will be sooner than you think!)

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Happy Monday, friends! If you like a certain roast, blend, or type of coffee, leave a comment telling us about it! We’d LOVE to hear what you’re drinking!

  • Blog: Next Steps » The Mix House - […] Meeting with Blanchard’s Coffee about getting our roasted coffee beans from them! We LOVE Blanchard’s and you can read all about our visit with them in Monday’s blog post. […]ReplyCancel

When we started dating in 2012, just about every single date ended with one of two things: ice cream, or coffee. We loved the atmosphere that coffee shops have. We often found ourselves hanging out, talking, and even dreaming about what the future held for us, all in a coffee shop. Before we got married, we had endless dreams and ideas as to what we would do with our lives. After looking into a few other ideas and talking for countless hours, we were wholeheartedly pursuing something very, very different. It wasn’t until we got married (literally, like 3 days later) that we realized that the things we each loved could be combined to fulfill lifelong dreams, as well as God’s call.

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Meet Tyler:

If there is one thing that encompasses my entire life and is at the core of who I am, it would be my love for learning. I don’t know what it is about learning history facts, new skills, or random tidbits of information, I love it! Katie is always having to put up with me pointing out different types of trees and plants, asking what band plays this song, and sharing my wealth of useless facts with her. Something I know very little about at this point is how to run a business. But when Katie and I began talking about opening a coffee shop, I got so excited about the idea of having something to delve into, something to sink myself into. And I think the idea of writing an operating agreement might make the rest of my team cringe!

On the polar opposite side of my brain, I also love to play music. I am fascinated with any instrument you can show me, and I love figuring out the quirks needed to play one. I especially love playing acoustic guitar and violin. But for as analytical as I am, music is the one area where there is less rhyme and reason for what I do. I love getting lost in the rhythms and melodies that my fingertips come up with, letting them decide where I go next.

My favorite drink: I am a sucker for a caramel latté, possibly with extra caramel.

My favorite baked good: Chocolate chip muffins. Growing up, mom would have packs of chocolate chip muffin mix she would save for a good saturday morning. I would’ve eaten 4 every time if there weren’t limited quantities that required me to share…

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Meet Katie:

I worked in the coffee industry for over 2 years. During that time I learned A LOT about running a shop. I absolutely still have SO MUCH to learn. However, my biggest takeaway from that experience was the importance of making connections with the people I met. I’ve never been very outgoing. But, after a few months at the shop, I started to connect with certain customers, and over time built incredible relationships with these people. There’s just something about seeing someone every single morning, before they’ve been caffeinated, that helps make this connection. I’ve watched pregnant bellies grow and grow until one day, that new mom is walking in the front door with a newborn – and very tired eyes. I’ve seen a group of runners meet every Saturday morning, rain, snow, sleet, or sun, to run countless miles together. I’ve waited all morning for 2:00 to come so I could admire the sweetest older couple as they come in for their afternoon date – just like they do every single day.

But I will never, ever forget the day that the absolute nicest man I’ve met came in our front door, just one day after losing his wife. We were one of the first places he went. I remember thinking, “Why in the world does he want to be HERE right now? Of all the places he could go in a time like this…” But no sooner than I thought that did he say something about how we were his only family. He continued to come in just as often as he always had, and of all people, a bunch of baristas somehow walked through that difficult time alongside him. That memory has stuck with me, and I still go back on occasion and see this same man. He still comes in, every day, just to see his favorite people. He could make his own coffee at home. But he comes for the connection. He comes for the conversation. And that? That’s what fires me up. That’s what I am absolutely, hands down, all about! I am SO anxious to get out there and meet these people who will become OUR regulars!

My favorite drink: Hot chocolate! I’m sure so many people are thinking, “what? I thought you loved coffee??” But I’m actually a chocoholic, and I don’t like chocolate in my coffee, so hot chocolate it is! I actually have an AWESOME hot chocolate recipe that I CANNOT wait to share with everyone on opening day!!!!

My favorite baked good: Cold pumpkin bread or any flavor scone!

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We hope you’ve enjoyed getting to know everyone this week! If you have anything you would want to know more about one of us, leave a comment and maybe we’ll do a future post about it!

  • kristen beale - I’m so glad I’m not the only non-coffee lover out there that is excited about the mix house! looking forward to buying my 1st hot chocolate there! :) Thanks for sharing some of your story!ReplyCancel

As a kid, I spent every summer with my great grandmother learning about cooking and baking. I was frequently scolded for closing the oven door too hard while checking on the cake, or having my fingers smacked with a spoon for eating whatever batter we were working on, but mostly I felt the love she put into everything she made. This love for baking grew within me, and years later I was invited to go and compete on Cupcake Wars with my previous employer. WHAT AN EXPERIENCE!!!

My husband, Brandon and I recently bought a house in Spotsylvania County, close to Caroline. In fact it’s closer to go to the Ladysmith Food Lion than the grocery store in Spotsy! We are the guardians of my 9 year old niece, Willow, who is incredibly excited for her new summer job as a Mixer. In case an energetic little girl wasn’t enough, we also have 3 hyperactive Boxer dogs and are talking about adding goats and chickens to the mix soon.

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My favorite drink: Hot Mocha. It doesn’t matter if it is 105 degrees outside, I will drink a HOT MOCHA!

My favorite baked good: A rich chocolate cake with a ganache center and chocolate buttercream icing. In case you couldn’t tell, I’m a sucker for chocolate.

Random fact: Along with my love for baking and love of animals, I love to write. I have entered into several writing competitions, and I recieved honorable mention in a Valentine’s Day short story contest.

We hope you’re enjoying getting to know each of us a little more! Say hi to Kelsey in the comments below!

  • kristen beale - Kelsey, We’re looking forward to meeting you in person! My daughter Riley is 9 as well and would love to have a girl in the family to play with. :) (LOTs of boy cousins around her age, but not a lot of girls) She also loves animals and wants to live on a dairy farm one day b/c she loves all thing dairy. We too are suckers for chocolate! Can’t wait to taste some of your yummy goodies. Very excited for The Mix House and looking forward to seeing this dream become a reality!ReplyCancel

Seeing The Mix House come to life has been a little surreal to say the least. Years ago, I would sit and dream with Katie about what it would be like to own a coffee shop one day. This was of course instead of doing our homework. But, I prevailed and now have a B.S. in Religion from Liberty University. I was born and raised in Caroline and while I spent quite a bit of time living in Charlottesville, VA…I’m coming back home! I love to hang out with my pup Zella and cheer on the North Carolina Tar Heels! When I’m not busy with The Mix House, you can usually find me eating, napping, going on adventures or watching college basketball.

My favorite drink: an espresso, chocolate, coconut, and banana mixed smoothie! In college there was a local coffee shop that served these – Katie and I would scrape together our coins just to split one before Chemistry class!

My favorite baked good: my grandma’s cheese biscuits! My mouth is watering just thinking about these!

Random fact: I love to travel! I’ve been blessed to see a good portion of the United States and have been to 8 countries. My dream is to one day take a cross country road-trip and spend time exploring out west!

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Jessica and friends at a UNC vs. UVA basketball game – Go ‘Heels!

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Jessica and Zella going on an adventure together!

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Jessica exploring Alaska!

We’ll be sharing more of these “Meet Your Mixer” posts this week, so keep an eye out for more! Don’t forget to leave Jessica some love in the comments!!

  • Susan Smith - love the blogReplyCancel

  • kristen beale - love this girl! Hard to believe I’ve known you since you were 3 or so! You and your family immediately captured my heart with your fun, loving, accepting and sincere ways. So looking forward to what God has in store for your future and with The Mix House. :)ReplyCancel