I have a standing Tuesday morning "date" to walk Captain with a buyer client who owns a small business. Sarah owns a creative and delicious ice cream store with two locations, Sarah's Hand Made Ice Cream. She started her first store about a year and a half ago, and was so successful that she was encouraged by friends, family, and the Bethesda community at large to open a second store, about three miles away. The second store was supposed to open last summer but with the COVID delays, it didn't open until late fall of 2019. Her daughter Annie runs the second location.
To my mind, it takes a lot of courage to open an ice cream store in the middle of the late fall in a pandemic. .Fortunately Sarah has that courage - and it helps that she makes delicious and inventive small batch ice cream! My daughter's favorite this Christmas was Sarah's Santa's Gingerbread ice cream - rich with chunks of gingerbread and perked up even more with red and green sprinkles.
I think my favorite of all time is Sarah's rose ice cream - tinted a pale pink and tasting just like you decided to chew a rose petal or two. The Dark and Stormy ice cream and the Ginger Zinger (with chunks of candied ginger) are pretty tempting too - and I can't forget the seasonal spiced Eggnog ice cream either.
Sarah brings such joy to the community. She said she was open until 5 on Christmas Eve and the customers kept coming - relieved that she was still open. She stayed late on New Years Eve too - providing that special smile that only ice cream can provide.
Sarah told me this morning that she celebrated New Years Eve with her daughter by looking back at the success she had achieved in 2020. The stores had thrived. Her staff was happy - although there had been a few COVID incidents. She is blessed with a wonderful daughter who works with her and shares her vision. Sarah's Hand Made Ice Cream was named the best ice cream store in Bethesda.
Many Americans spent New Year's Eve rejoicing that 2020 was over and behind us. I think Sarah's way was very wise. She was perhaps particularly entitled to look back and 2020 and see lots of success - but I suspect that most of us had a lot to celebrate in 2020. After all - we are still here! Last year - even more than most - the alternative was very real. We had time to spend with small circles of family, loved ones and pets. We as realtors were able to keep working in most parts of the country. We sold houses and we helped people. Even if we didn't do it in the same volumes as in other years (and many actually did more business in 2020), we were blessed to be able to keep working. Many of us finished long term projects and started other ones. We were lucky.
Most of all, we survived and generally thrived in spite of COVID. That is a lot to celebrate. We shouldn't just throw 2020 away, because then we forget how strong we were in 2020 and how much we grew. We should remember and celebrate 2020 because we did survive.
Here's to 2021 - I hope you keep building on the achievements of 2020!