Joy Lane Happenings

Getting Candle Jars

“You’re the glass guy??” She looked at me like I was mythological. “We all thought it was a mistake.” I thought back to when I called the glass jar vendor for our soy candles and found out it could be January or February before we got more jars. We had finally gotten coconut oil and here were again, trying to navigate another shortage. Tired, but undeterred, I thought about the boys and girls on the other side of the mountain who wanted to burn applejack candles in October and Balsam candles at Christmas. “Do you think we can get more...

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It was five o'clock

It was five o’clock, and I was walking out of the mill into the parking lot after a day of soap-making when I felt it—unfamiliar, unexpected, but solidly there—a deep sense of pride in Joy Lane Farm. For many years, I was ashamed of our little business. I was embarrassed by how small it was, of how hard we worked for how little, and for how bad I was at the numerous hats I wore, none of which I studied at school. Family and friends would ask about it, and I would do a mental dance, wondering how much of...

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We Actually Did It

We Actually Did It

We actually did it. With online orders flowing, manufacturing needing to be done, and one of our biggest wholesale orders popping up in our inbox after the car was loaded, we… left. We drove four hours to a secluded Maine peninsula, meeting up with the girls’ Grandpa and Nana with limited internet and—gloriously--nothing to do. Just salty air, eagles, and the ebb and flow of the ocean tide. Every morning and evening we walked around the point. The girls opened a “sushi restaurant” on the beach, and I skipped a years’ worth of stones. We played rocket league, chess, and...

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When We Moved into Our House, the Living Room Was Awful

When We Moved into Our House, the Living Room Was Awful

When we moved into our house, the living room was awful. It had a carpet that smelled like animals, a massive built in entertainment center with enough shelving to hold 100s of VHS tapes, and the walls were dark red and stained pine, giving the entire thing the feel of an abandoned hunting cabin. We knew next to nothing about DIY projects, but that has changed! I can finally sign off on our living room being finished, and I love it. We put in hardwood floors, painted everything, tore out one of the walls down to the studs and rebuilt...

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The Price of Olive Oil Doubled

The price of olive oil doubled. Coconut oil, for the first time in eight years, wasn’t available for three weeks. Candle wax costs went up 30%, and wicks were discontinued. As for jars, we’re given a day 8 weeks out, and if we haven’t ordered that morning, they’re gone by that afternoon. Over the years, we’ve learned to be nimble, and it’s never been more critical. We’re shifting manufacturing schedules, optimizing batch sizes, using multiple raw material vendors, and crunching lots of numbers. We haven’t made any changes yet on the front end and are working hard to hopefully all...

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