If it hasn’t been made evident by now, we love people here at AAT! We love hearing about their stories and passions for our community, but we also love hearing about what our fellow locals do and why they do it! For example, we have some wonderful neighbors who own/manager some fantastic local businesses and serve our town tremendously by doing so! This fact is why AAT has partnered up with our good friends at B3 Glass, to bring you all “Small Business Fridays!” Each week, we’ll feature a different, local small business and talk with its owner and hear about their journey, their business in general, as well as their heart for their customers and our city!
This week, we’re joined by Amelia Meridith! Amelia is an independent distributor for Premier Designs jewelry; she has a love for not only all things bling, but fashion as well. Her desire is for her customers to “sparkle on” in confidence when they wear her quality pieces. This longtime Elko native is also a mother of two boys and has recently made a major transition from a mom working out in the community to a mom who runs her business from home.
We’re excited to chat with her about what that adjustment has been like for her. However, first, let’s get to know her story a bit!
“Since I was fifteen years old, I’ve done a ton of different things. The only thing I think I haven’t done is build a house! My first job was at Subway, and I worked there for a while before I became the manager of Taco Bell. I had my oldest son the day before my eighteenth birthday, and for a long time after he was born, I was by myself. We were living in Reno where I worked as a preschool teacher when I had him, but we had to escape from an abusive situation there and come back to Elko. When I got back, I worked in a hotel as a waitress; that was super fun. After that, I was a barista and then worked at a dealership in their parts department. From there, I worked in a couple more tire shops around town. All that has been crammed in between me being fifteen to now. I’ve never not worked. So, when it came to my two kids, I would try to be there for them as much as I could.
“Four or five years ago, I met my husband; we’ve been married now for almost two years. He is the most amazing guy I’ve met in my life, and through our relationship came the opportunity for me to stay home. This was nerve-wracking for me because I’ve obviously never done it in my entire life. At first, I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t know if I should paint the walls or what I should be doing! Eventually, I connected with Marie Manning of Elko Bling and started my business. Within the next year, my goals are to sign up with a clothing line and then open a boutique. I want to live to work, not work to live. When you’re working so much that you’re not living at all, there’s no point. I lived that way for too long.”
Let’s discuss that part of your story further for a second. It may be safe to assume that there are several readers of this feature who can relate to working from home. How was that transition for you as someone who has been working outside of the home for more than half of their life?
“It can make you feel like you once had a purpose, and now you don’t. Being out at work with customers who call you every day can make you important. If I didn’t have the backing from my kids and my husband, there’s no way I could do it. I’ve had those days when I wake up and feel useless.”
For those who may find themselves often wrestling with those same kinds of feelings as a stay-at-home parent, what type of advice and encouragement would you offer?
“The best thing that’s worked for me is getting up in the morning and writing down a couple of things [I] want to get done that day, even if the items on that list are taking a walk or listening to an inspirational audiobook. When I looked back at my list at the end of the day and saw that I accomplished the things I wanted, it helps with my mindset. Sitting there all day, getting down on yourself doesn’t get you anywhere. Be proud of yourself! If you got your laundry done that day, that’s great! Set goals for yourself. If your infant child’s room looks a mess today, tell yourself that it is going to look a different way tomorrow.
“Being negative and giving up is not going to take you anywhere. If you’re doing something now that you once felt like would get you somewhere, believe in that. Work as hard as you can at it and keep your mindset where it was in the beginning. Here I am, at home thinking I’m useless because my husband is out working nights. No, I’m not! I’m taking care of my kids; I was able to take my kids to hockey and be there for them. You’ll get where you want to be if you keep the right mindset and the right people around you.”
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See you around, Elko!
Written by: Anthony Crosby
Edited by: Nadara Merrill