A New Baby. . .
Yes our new baby is almost here, the contractions are getting closer together and I am feeling the urge to push. I am telling you, this store is our new baby. Kofi came two weeks after his projected due date, there is our time and God’s time. I prefer God’s time so as eager as I am to get the doors open, I am also understanding of divine order.
In the interim, everyone keeps asking the question of the day, when is the baby coming, or rather when are we opening? I feel bad because I thought we would have been opened already but There are so many little details that are being taken care of now that I personally overlooked.
We will get our leasehold improvement grant from the city today! Which will allow us to purchase our POS (point of sale) system that tracks everything we sell, inventory, etc. and works with an Ipad and a square. It’s sleek and very efficient. We also have to get an oven, we only have a three top gas burner now.
Omar painted the countertop red and it looks beautiful. Oh we passed our electrical inspection and have three more to go. Woo hoo. The bathrooms are being tiled today,and that was the last major thing that needed to be done. The floors and walls throughout the entire 3600 sq ft massive place are all painted and stained with one million coats LOL.
I am going to look for a changing table and a bathroom vanity today. Call me if you have a wood changing table ASAP. 3476617179
We have our menu board going up today as well as wall art/decor. My favorite part obviously. I got to print and laminate our juice cleanse and meal plan package signs.
Also we just got another juicer so we have two big fancy juicers now, enabling us to be at an event and still have the store going eventually, when we have enough man power that is. Also ordering packaging, more blender jars etc.
So lots of last minute details but all coming together. As for balancing my family life, making sure everyone gets a physical etc, because who knows when we will have another free day. Also going to take my kids on a field trip and get a romantic date in with Omar. For at least a year, my family life as we know it will be very different, but we know sacrifice and we are ready for it. Please keep us in your prayers and be patient a little longer.
We honestly are doing the best we can and going the fastest we can, it is all new to us and has been an exciting adventure. My mom said to me this morning, do you realize you are going to be cooking every day, all day? LOL.
Please visit us tomorrow (Saturday from 9am to 2 in front of our store, rain or shine for some yummy vegan food and smoothies. The baby is almost here. Thanks for all your love and gifts, see you soon.
Okay, I know what you are saying, hurry up and open already. . .I wish I could say I was just building momentum, but the truth of the matter is our place is huge. We can not have the front room look beautiful and the backroom look ridiculous. So, all the walls in our entire building have been painted in lovely bright colors, mainly green, yellow, and red! Then the terazzo floors throughout have been stained this beautiful rust color.
Um, of course there was additional drama with our electricians, do not worry I am going to report them so they do not jerk anyone else around like they did to us. Fortunately, I am a praying wife and was able to calm my irate husband down the other day and he was more angry than I have ever seen him in the 17 years I have known him. Thank you electricians for giving us a nervous breakdown, no really, thank you.
Decorations are going up on the walls, but again the length of our space is 150ft, so that is a long wall to decorate. I like batiks and masks, and positive word affirmations. I found in metal the letters to make the word KALE, so be putting that up with all the nutritional benefits of kale. The mural is just about done, only have to paint the sky, draw an eggplant with a top hat and a mushroom. Kofi was not invited to paint but decided to assist any way. My big kids were begging me to paint as well.
A lot of the things we stored in our home for our business the last two years are migrating to my store, AMEN. However, with the stainless steel bowls and many other things went the decorations from my wall, my bench, bookcase, kids toys. LOL! I have to make the store feel like my home because for many hours out the day, it will be.
This Saturday, we will be set up again directly in front of our store to invite you to the Kale Cafe Juice Bar Countdown Event.
WHAT: Kale Cafe Juice Bar Event ( We are going to get your feedback, tell us what you want on the menu, walk through and take a sneak peek before the final inspections are done) We will also be selling lunches, smoothies, and of course giving out samples. This is your chance to make this your new healthy eating home too so come and be a part of it and bring a virgin with you. A KALE VIRGIN, that is, what is all this hype about? Skeptics, why just bring the folks that know you look awesome but have not made the connection that is because you eat healthy every day. Bring em!!! The pickier the better, we love the skeptics.
WHEN: 9am-1pm 2-5 (We will still be there moving furniture around and need strong people that can help do that)
WHERE: 116 N. Beach St. Our New HOME to Healthy Vegan Foods
COSTS: Come by, lunches are $10 My menu for Sat is as follows: Scrambled Tofu, Brown Stew Tofu, Kale Salad, Carribbean Tabbouleh, Curry Chana with pumpkin and potatoes, brown rice, banana chocolate chip scones, and cinnabons with apples and walnuts! Of course, as always expect the smoothies yall. Smoothies are $5 for 16oz and 24oz is $8. Why the price increase from $7 bucks on the food. Well, now we have a huge overhead to take care of so in order to be open 6 days instead of just one day at the market, we had to make big changes. Also, we have switched to using exclusively organic tofu, and many other organic products and will continue to do so, because it makes sense, but costs more cents if you know what I mean.
As a side note, we do want to host a CSA or food CO-OP of sorts so we can all buy organic in bulk which will help everyone and also build community. I will also be applying to take SNAP/EBT so any salads and smoothies, juices will eventually be items that can be purchased with food stamps. Why? Because we all deserve to eat healthy at affordable prices.
WHY: Because we want to meet you in person, hug you, chit chat, and let you see what we been diligently working on to bring to our community. Please bring the following items if you have them to help us furnish our place. Just think, it will be like when you come to Kale Cafe Juice Bar, it will have a piece of your home in it too, or a piece of a thrift store you stopped at LOL.
First let me thank all of you that have dropped by the store to bring books, mops, money, wine crates, paint, and hugs and smiles. We love you! For those of you that sent smiles in the mail, we love you too, keep cheering us on and see you soon.
WISH LIST: 1) Small solid wood dining tables, we have tons of chairs, got em for two bucks each, so tables.
We want the back area to be like a giant cozy living room, but is huge so coffee tables, couches that are in great condition that did not come from a home with animals or a smoker (picky picky, I know, sorry. Also as much as leather is easy to clean, it is an animal by product, so vinyl and pleather yes, LEATHER NOPE.
2) Wood kids furniture, not a big fan of plasic. (A wooden table and chair set)
3) Wooden kids toy kitchen and toy train table (Making a KIDS LEARNING ZONE FOLKS)
4) FAO Swartz makes a cloth world map and it is about $70 at Toys R Us if anyone wants to get that.
5) Board games that have been gently used and still have pieces, puzzles
6) Rocking Chair (going out on a limb here)
7) Sewing Machine (still have to sew my coffee bean sacks into a curtain)
9) 160z mason jars if anyone wants to buy some (going to use them in house for smoothies)
10) Plants in pots that do well indoors to enhance air quality
11) carved wood masks or statues.
12) Artwork (if you are an artist be part of our gallery and sell your work in a highly visible place)
13) If you are in doubt, just think is this funky? If the answer is yeah, then it probably would be a perfect addition to our store.
14) Okay, my children are homeschooled and I would love to give them a ipad to fight over or macbook, or any laptop for that matter. If you have one that you want to give to them, that would be amazing.
We will also may have a DJ playing and you will be able to sign up and pay for for Healthy Cooking for the Holidays Classes. I will offer two evening and two day sessions that will be $25 each. What will we make you say? Well you will sign up for the different classes on Saturday and I will have descriptions then. We will also have our T-shirts for sale that say Midtown EcoVillage and give a recipe for our green stuff on it, they are $20.
Okay sorry to be long winded, I have been super busy and needed to get everyone up to speed, including my sister in Malaysia. Hi Claudine.
See you Saturday, Peace and Blessings
In the last couple of sleepless weeks, we have achieved a great deal. We got our Florida Business Lisc from Dept of Hotels and Agriculture and they will be coming to do the inspection as soon as we give them the go ahead. We introduced our smoothies and food at the Port Orange Family Days Event and were a big hit, even winning a crowd favorite award.
Okay so a couple videos for you to see some progress, keep in mind the videos are about two weeks behind, LOL. Omar is painting now and electricians hanging pendants and fans today, track lighting up, gotta by like 25 bulbs. We want LED but budget will allow CFLs instead.
Watch videos here
Special shout out to all my new friends, you know who you are, that are keeping us going as we near the finish line. Trying to ensure some sort of balance for our children during all of this, and that means four days out the week, running them to ballet and karate and doing some cultivation of their minds and talents as well. Amali started her own business last weekend to celebrate her birthday, Amali’s #9 and she sells purses and other fashion accessories she designs. Better to learn now how money is earned so she can value and invest for life. She even did a business plan, I digressed, but proud of her
We have a ton of cleaning to do, the first room where the juice bar and seating is will be done by the end of the week, but then there is the monster size back room that needs cleaning. Thats the room where we will do Smoothies and Movies. It also needs artwork or a mural of sorts. Anyone interested in painting a big mural as a donation on one wall and then I will put artwork on the other wall.
Kale Cafe is going to be the go to spot for vegan and raw foods. Do not forget we are hooking up the cooking classes, live music, open mics, and family discos so it will be fun, fun, fun.
Oh so you can still make in kind donations, we need light bulbs, you can also donate financially, gift cards to Home Depot, World Market, etc. Just shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
We got to get the grease traps cleaned out, floors mopped, dust, etc. Heavy Duty cleaning, any cleaning OCD folks want to come out and get their hands dirty with us anytime this week, let me know. My cell is 3476617179
There has been a lot of little updates as well and we are working hard so look for us to open up very soon. In the interim, visit us at the City Island Farmer’s Market.
Okay so again, a special thanks to my filmmaker buddy who keeps on top of d documenting our progress while we are swamped an too busy to think about shooting videos, LOL . Sir Ken English of Nottingham, okay maybe not but the MediaMojo of Daytona Beach. Need videos shot for anything, call on him, he is a pleasure to work with and he is efficient.
305.335.4857 Ken EnglishDaytonaBeachVideoMarketing.com
Okay, well that is all for now
Also we are making our space as green as possible, including a lot of reclaimed wood. We want to purchase solar panels and have a rain water catch system. For those of you that at are carpenters and handymen and women, please reach out to us if you can do some in kind work. We seriously could use an electrician. We are also taking reclaimed wood. We need bar stools and solid wood tables. Is there a plumber out there?? We are doing a shabby chic look so if you have some solid pieces that may work in the space, let us know. We have 3600 feet to decorate. Last but not least if you can sew or reupholster stuff, please call us. We got 20 chairs donated and want to make them look funky. My cell is 3476617179 so please give me a call, you can also call our business phone (386)227-7393.
We are going to make this great together so thank you for your support, it takes a village.
Love The Browns
Greetings Midtown EcoVillage Family,
Thanks for visiting our site, please take the time to explore if you are new watch some videos and look at photos, read articles, and see us in action. We are raising monies to help us get Kale Café ready for our grand opening this October and need your help. Please click the link below which will take you to our kickstarter page so you can contribute whatever you are able to help us get our community healthy.
Lastly, after you give what you can, please share the link with people so they can see what we are about as well. Putting the link on your facebook page is great idea and also tell your employer because they may be interested in some of the rewards we are offering and may want to sponsor as well. We will reach our goal of $20,000 by September 1th, 2013.
Kale Café & Juice Bar will be your one stop for all things healthy and a great place to meet other people on the journey to optimum health. Get ready for green smoothies galore and vegan food that will have you wishing you knew how to cook that good. That’s where Midtown EcoVillage takes over, I will offer cooking classes for individuals and families all gearing you up to cook fantastic vegan food. So think of this as one of the best investments in your health, which is your true wealth. See you soon in Kale Café at 116 N. Beach St.
If you happen to work with a company that does construction, painting, or electric work please email me at email@example.com or call 347.661.7179 because we need your help and would love for you to do some in kind work for us.
Thank You & We Love You
First let me say thank you to my customers, seeing people try our vegan food and green smoothies for the first time and the things they say are my accolades. My family works hard but this work has been so rewarding and is fun more than anything. As you all may or may not know, before I became a self-proclaimed chef, I was and still am a filmmaker. So the fact that Hollywood glitz and glam did not appeal to me is no surprise, I am a lady who is rooted in family and community. I prefer to talk to one of my fabulous customers about seasonings and recipes than to be on a red carpet any day. I said all that to say this, I LOVE YOU and thanks for your support. Who knew my passion for cooking and my husband’s love of growing food would start Midtown EcoVillage, but it did!
Midtown EcoVillage is now going to present to you our very first juice bar and vegan cafe. Yes I said, you cheered us on, you waited patiently, you did not get mad when your brown stew tofu spilled everywhere en route home because of our inexpensive but eco-friendly paper trays got soggy. You stuck with us and you came out in the rain, in the winter, in the hot days of summer and you were loyal, You made us realize we were on to something and that you needed us just as much as we needed you. We became family. The Farmer’s Market was our training ground, talk about on the job training, but we did it, you all and us together, we learned and grew together and now . . .I present to you, our newest baby.
TRUMPETS PLEASE & DRUM ROLL. . .
Midtown EcoVillage’s Kale Cafe & Juice Bar
116 N. Beach St.
Daytona Beach, FL 32114
If you missed it that is our new location. One of you lovely customers saw my sign at the market and pulled me aside and asked if we still needed help, investors, etc. Well, God Bless our angel that gave us a loan for $10,000.00.
Okay and if that was not exciting enough we already signed the lease!!!!! No we are not kidding, we have claimed this and we are giving it everything we got. This fall, Midtown EcoVillage, doing business as Kale Cafe Juice Bar will open it’s doors on Beach St. is part of the Beach St. Renaissance.
If you are not excited yet, get excited. Watch the video which another one of our fantastic customers has created for us and in exchange we give him a green mustache and his wife kale in her teeth. Yes, it has certainly taken a village to grow our business and we still need and value your help and input.
The plan is as follows: We still need to raise an additional forty thousand $40,000 bucks and if 200 people give us 100 bucks we are half way there. We are also seeking contributions from corporations and other organizations. There will be many rewards for the monies and/or in-kind services and goods donated. So help us so we can help make this place as awesome as ever, because we need it and Daytona needs it.
Check out our kickstarter link below and give what you can, if you have no money to give, tell a buddy to help out a good cause and remember you can always donate carpentry, electrician, painting, etc. services. You will receive a letter thanking you for your contribution for your tax records.
Spread the word, share the links on your facebook services, chat us up in the bathroom at your job, tell your employers you want them to be a sponsor so we can make smoothies for your co-workers. Just do what you can to help get the word out, the more the merrier. We have to raise the full amount of money we need on kickstarter because if not, we do not get any money at all. Womp womp, but that will not happen. We are too strong to fail, so let’s go forward, we are a village and we can do this.
We Love You All and Thank You For Your Support in Advance!!!
Peace & Blessings,
Midtown EcoVillage is Expanding, so here is a glimpse into our juice bar and cafe journey. We will be doing weekly updates from here on out until our grand opening.
First let me say this, opening a juice bar and cafe requires a lot of stamina, of fresh green juices and smoothies if you will, not to mention, prayer, and vision. So it is not enough anymore to just be at events and schools periodically. We need to have corporate sponsorship and grants and a real location that people can count on us to be at, and that we can have our children with us learning too.
Our vision is to have a couple shipping containers upcycled into a chic, but more importantly LEED certified green, highly sustainable juice bar and teaching kitchen. Yes, you know the cooking classes I have been promising for months. I really want them to be in a kitchen that is a virgin, no meat residue anywhere. As a matter of fact, we are going to be certified Kosher as well. We see recycled glass counter tops and bamboo cabinets and cement floors. I am talking a toilet that composts, rain water collection barrels and graywater system , solar panels on the roof. Now you get what I am saying? Innovative and extremely efficient but more importantly a showcase space for learning about all things sustainable. You want to know all about the cloth diapers I put on Kofi, attend a workshop I teach in our classroom space. You want to come to that cooking class and finally master my kale salad, step right up. You think you can dance better than me, well bring out your family to a fun disco day to promote family fitness. I am talking a place where people can gather and talk about what they are growing and help eachother grow as people and as a community. It can happen and it will happen!
It has been nearly 2 years in the making but we are seeing the light now at the end of the tunnel. Business plan is done and now meeting with potential companies that want in! Picture your company getting all the credit for a free cooking class that you sponsor, yes corporate branding associated with the biggest issue in our country, FIGHTING OBESITY and healthy food inequality.
We are meeting with the health department, the city, SBDC, SCORE, our bank, general contractors, and it is so cool how one person leads us to another person. My Granny calls it divine order.
We are visiting other juice bars and similar type businesses and doing our homework. We are studying another non-profit restaurant and their success. Just yesterday we were in New Smyrna having a fresh juice at the Healing Zone at 515 Canal St. We have been pricing equipment and trying to get things donated. We are shooting webisodes and pilots for our cooking show that will help us not only serve Volusia County but get people healthy nationwide.
All this excitement is making me hungry, well, that and the fact I have been up since 3:30 nursing then working on the computer. Do not judge me, I get my Mommy Time/Work time in when I can, LOL.
Lastly I just want to say, I could not be more grateful for my husband and his vision for our family and being the great leader that he is. I do not know any
human being more loving, compassionate, hard-working, and positive than my husband. He is my Smoothie Mon, Farmer Brown, and I am looking so forward to having the reception of when we renew our vows next May after a decade of marriage at out new juice bar.
Watch out folks, it’s coming and nothing or no one can stop us because this is greater than Omar and I, our children and your children are the real little flames blazing this fire to put an end to food deserts everywhere. BOOM.
You know how to reach us, get involved and help us make it a reality this fall.
Vegetarian Family Always Grazing
How do we do what we do as a vegetarian family with four homeschooled children. Well, balance and boundaries are paramount. Of course, always we try to remember to not sweat the small stuff. . .
How do we get the energy? RAW POWER! Ton’s of fresh cold pressed juices and green smoothies make up a large portion of our meals and is our fast food! There is no drive by and pick up window food. Period. Which is hard for people on the go if they do not know what to replace it with. It’s easier than you think, it involves packing food like a nomadic person and gathering nuts and berries from your grocery store and tons of produce and bringing it everywhere. If you have children, like we do, growing not greedy ones, they need tons of calories and snacks. Freshly made organic popcorn, homemade breads and scones, baked tofu sandwiches, miso soup, and this just seems to go on forever. They are always hungry, I digressed.
Ripping & Running requires more RAW FOOD POWER. Not tons of supplements in pill form either, I am talking about super-foods like spirullina and an abundance of fresh juice. Do bottled ready made juices from the grocery store work for us? Nope, because we know they are pasteurized and they do not taste fresh to us, so that leaves us rushing out the house, fresh juices and green smoothies in tow in a jar and most likely, the juicer on the counter and gnats buzzing around it when we get home. LOL. Sound familiar, I mean really, if you do not have pounds of produce in all various stages of ripeness, what do you really have? Is it a cupboard full of staples like millet, quinoa, and spices? Maybe instead it is a bunch of organic processed foods in your freezer and cupboard.
Veggie hot dogs, organic cereals are fun foods that my children indulge in and enjoy taking to camp, but if I do not hit them with the smoothies and juices to balance that out in the am and pm, colds will ensue. Why, because limited sleep and processed foods, most of which will have sugar will run down your immune system in a heartbeat.
Remind me when you see me to tell you about sugar and why I run from it for the most part.
So what does a typical vegetarian family feeding frenzy look like? I will tell you, but I will say this, my 10 month old son Menelik, or Kofi as I call him by his middle name mainly, grazes all day on my breast and random crumbs he finds on the floor, along with the food I give him. I buy zero baby food and make no special baby batches either. He eats what we eat, I am mindful of his limited teeth and tend to pre-chew his food a bit, giving him some digestive yummy enzymes from me as well. Gross, but better than food colorings, chemicals, and preservatives and heh, it’s certified organic spit! LOL
Breakfast: Green Smoothie Breakfast Again: Buckwheat Pancakes & Scrambled Tofu or Porridge
Lunch: Vegan Greek Salad with Chick’n strips and a Roasted Potatoes or Kale Salad & Baked Jerk Tofu
Snack: Popcorn, Freshly Made Almond Milk, Cereal, PB& J, Granola (we make it too sometimes so I can control the sugar in it)
Dinner: Lentil Soup & Cornbread or Black Beans with Brown Rice, Salad, and Brown Stew Chick’n.
Are there always dishes in my sink? YES! I can not keep up with them and all the cooking. Any shortcut ideas, yes make beans in bulk , cut a zillion scallions and onions and make proteins ahead of time, on a Sunday perhaps. Make fresh bread once a week and triple the recipe for foccacia for example, my oldest daughter has taken over that job! Try to make enough juice for the whole day, and maybe two days if you don’t mind it being a day old. Buy some healthy crap for when you do not feel like being bothered (I mean organic corn chips, veggie hot dogs, etc.) but realize that it is expensive, not nutritionally dense and they will be undoubtedly hungry in less than an hour so you better have areal plan, or else, they will keep begging for the snack food and then voila. They have a cold mysteriously. No rocket science, no short cuts around real food.