May 21, 2021

Happy 1st Birthday Pine!

By Kendall Braunstein
Happy 1st Birthday Pine!

Happy 1st Birthday Pine!

Well, it's been quite the year. I expected the first year to be full of unexpected hurdles and triumphs, but a pandemic was not something I considered. We signed the lease before the world shutdown and opened the doors the week that street front retail shops were allowed to in Ontario. And so began the crazy retail roulette ride.

Pandemic aside, I thought I would share 10 things I learned year 1:

1. Refilling containers is extremely satisfying and makes you feel good. The act itself of reusing a container, instead of purchasing a new one is intrinsically satisfying.

2. Refilling saves you money! Refilling an original container with the same product results in a saving of between 10-20%. Seems obvious now, but I didn't know how cost effective refilling is until this year.

3. Refilling is a great way to try something new. Unsure if the shampoo available in refill will work with your hair? Just get a little, if you like it come back to fill up! I love being able to introduce customers to products without them having to make a big commitment.

4. I'll never buy cling wrap again! Beeswax wraps, silicone bags and fabric bowl covers are sustainable alternatives. They all come in great prints and colours; I classify them as eco-friendly + eco-happy.

5. Bar soap can be luxurious. If you told me that before trying the amazing, all natural hand crafted soaps from CK Soak, I would have said OK, but not actually have believed you. CK's bar soap is creamy, comes in aromas like lilac and charcoal lavender and are handcrafted so that no two bars look the same. 

6. Small business owners are the best. The founder/creator of the brands we carry are a phone call away. They stand behind their products and work hard to support their brand. I've learned that I love introducing customers to great Canadian companies and their products.

7. The importance of reminding people that one change is enough. Replacing a product with harmful ingredients, like Palmolive Dish Soap, with a clean alternative, like Green Cricket's Dish Soap is one to be proud of. 

8. Collingwood and the people here are the best! So many people continue to go out of their way to support us during the lockdowns, it makes my heart smile.

9. How fortunate I am to have Joe, Mitch and Thomas. While Kendall and I are committed to our dream of establishing Pine Eco + Refillery Boutique as the sustainable go-to in Collingwood, Joe and the boys are living and working in King City/Toronto. Thank you for your support, I know it's not easy.

10. I have learned what I already knew: Kendall is one smart, creative, driven powerhouse. I have not coped well with the limits placed on the business after Christmas, but Kendall remains positive. "We have people" was and remains her mantra. She is right. She has a vision for Pine that is only positive. I've learned how lucky I am to have my unique/talented/unwavering partner. Here's to year 2!!




Happy 1st Birthday Pine!

What a first year to introduce you to the world, but in every way I'm so happy we did! It's been the most rewarding year of my life, filled with unexpected challenges and triumphs that have only strengthened my belief in you + the positivity you're capable of bringing to people's lives.  

When I reflect on this past year, here are some big + small things I've learned:

1. I have the best partner. Just read the above and you'll see why!

2. I'm doing exactly what I'm meant to do. There have been so many synchronicities leading up to opening Pine, and until writing this now, that remind me to always have faith in my potential and my dreams. The universe will always support us becoming the highest version of ourselves.

3. Refilling is just as satisfying now as it was a year ago. As much as Pine is about protecting the Earth's health, for me it's equally about helping people feel good. And refilling, or making the conscious effort to do good (no matter how small), always leaves you feeling good!

4. Health is adding a level of intention to every area of our life. I think health is also connected to being balanced. And being balanced means that we've set a positive intention and are taking actions towards realizing that intention.

5. To take life day by day. With a year of the government setting limitations, it's easy to feel overwhelmed and to fall into a pattern of anxious thinking, but by taking things by day, we're able to do what we once thought would be impossible.

6. Probably the biggest lessons I've learned is gratitude. I knew I loved Collingwood when I moved here at the beginning of the summer in 2019 (and loved it so much that I decided to stay). But I didn't realize how much more I would come to love this town. We have received SOOO much love + support from everyone during the pandemic, you all continue to amaze me! We really do have the best customers ever, in all of history so thank you!!!

I think the best way to sum up this past year, is by saying thank you! It's an incredible thing to put yourself out there and have people support you. It makes me beyond happy to be able to come to the place I love and be able to do what I love for the people I love.

 There's nothing more I'd like to be doing than hanging out at 38 Pine St. everyday and helping people take care of themselves, their homes, and the planet. It's been an incredible first year, and I can't wait to see what's in-store (pun intended 😉) for year 2!!

Happy Birthday Pine! 🌲





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