Vendor Profile: Little House of Thyme
written by Sandy Skura
How it happened was simple: I had an overabundance of herbs in my garden, my Dad took a walk over to visit and asked me why I looked so puzzled standing in my garden. I told him I had too many herbs, and he replied quickly with what changed my life “Then start a business.” That’s all it took! I liked to cook, so I began writing recipes, then I would start trying different dips, dressings, seasoning out on family and friends.
By November 1989, I went and sold products at my first craft fair. From that point on, I began to do many craft fairs and decided it was thyme to get my state license so I could start selling wholesale to stores. After I received my license, I began doing trade shows then finally received my FDA Approval. Thirty years later and beginning our 31st year, we are still working hard and looking towards the future.
Along the way, we encountered many twists and turns like putting a good part of the business on hold to become caregivers to my parents, my Dad 14 years, and my Mom almost 18 years.
Then a year and a half ago, I decided to reinvent myself and go full speed ahead with Little House of Thyme and with the help of my husband Stan we jumped in and gave it our all. I spent more time researching, marketing, working on me (always room for improvement) and thanks to my wonderful neighbors Fran and Jeannie who gave me a wonderful mobile phone which changed my life, my business, this last year has been a half an eye-opening experience. This gift of technology-enhanced my business to levels I never thought I could achieve.
I studied tai chi, I worked hard at the studio I attended, and after many years of studying and dedication, I started leading classes, but sadly I had to step back from the studio as my parent’s needs became more demanding. I still practice on my own and hope to return to the studio as my life becomes more balanced.
I love helping friends, family, and customers with dinners, help them entertain, coordinate dinners for them like holiday meals, showers, birthdays and many types of gatherings. Food and entertainment is a big part of my life and ties in so beautifully with Little House of Thyme, I enjoy writing menus for people and the joke is if you need help in the kitchen, I can help just call 1-800-i-can-cook. It boils down to I love helping others in need, whether it’s a ride to the store or doctors, help at their house or to help with the meals, teach and share the love of food.
People ask me how I create recipes? It starts with a thought, an idea of what do I want to create or to achieve. If I want to create a soup for instance, what do I want to taste in that soup, what would be my base, how do I want to blend and bring out the flavors I am thinking of.
That’s how it begins with many other cooks and me. I get an idea I work it out and then create a fresh pot of soup using fresh veggies, fresh herbs, homemade stock and so on, I keep working with it to bring out the flavors.
When I am happy with what I created, I then recreate it with dried ingredients and work with it until I feel it is as delicious as the fresh pot of soup I created. I would use dried herbs, veggies, and a high-quality store-bought broth, I use a store-bought broth to recreate with the customer in mind because some thymes after a busy day you just don’t have thyme to make homemade stock and you have to put yourself in the situation of your customer and their needs. Our products are designed for the person who works hard all day, has limited thyme to prepare meals and deserves a good meal or a wonderful side dish.
The idea behind Little House of Thyme was to create delicious, high-quality products using our recipes and the best ingredients. A delicious product gathers friends and family together to share “the joys of the table.” Little House of Thyme was created for the love of food, the love of cooking and the love of friends and family. Our products are delicious and are made with good ingredients. With our soups, all you need is to add water or broth for a complete meal, our rice and couscous just add water and cook as directed for a wonderful side dish or add chicken, shrimp, tofu or extra veggies for a delicious complete meal. Homemade by you for you and your family the way it should be. Our products take 15 to 45 minutes to cook except for our new White Bean Soup with Veggies, Spinach and Dill which takes two hours but it is well worth the wait. Honest! I hope you enjoy the Little House of Thyme products as much as we do! Designed with you and your family in mind and for people who just love good food and have fun cooking it. Enjoy! Thank you, Sandy and Stan