For this week’s Meet a Mom Monday, I’m happy to introduce Meagan Schmitt, a Boxford mom of two teens, and owner of Oak & Thyme. I have personally bought teacher gifts from Meagan, but never knew the personal story behind the start and naming of her business until this interview. She is a great inspiration for moms who struggle to set boundaries and balance entrepreneurship with motherhood. Keep reading to learn more about Meagan!
Where are you from originally and what town do you live in now?
I’m from the New England area originally. Living in Portland, Swampscott & Nahant. I lived in Colorado for 10 years and then found myself back on the North Shore in Boxford.
How many children do you have and what are their age(s)?
I have two kids that are 14 & 15
What’s your favorite family activity on the North Shore?
I love the beach in the summer, apple picking in the fall and baking at home during the colder months
Where’s your favorite place to eat and/or shop on the North Shore?
When it comes to food, I don’t need anything fancy. But, Rusty Can in Byfield and Lexi’s in Newburyport are the all-time best. I love walking around Newburyport for shopping.
Tell us a little bit about your background and how you decided to start Oak & Thyme.
In high school I got a job at a small flower shop. It wasn’t anything I had ever thought about doing. I actually liked it and was surprisingly good at it. I’ve always been creative but never thought about using flowers as a medium. I managed a flower shop in Boston before I was married and then spent 15 years at a boutique in Marblehead. The owner and I were very close and she recently passed away. I decided to start my own company and take everything I learned from her and put it into my own company. In a way I feel like I honor her everyday with what I do because she taught me so much.
Starting my own business was something I had been thinking about for a while but just wasn’t ready and I was scared to make a change. When Covid started and my boss got sick, I knew it was the right time. My company’s name has a powerful meaning to me. An oak tree has some of the hardest and strongest wood out there. The ‘Oak’ comes from it being a hard thing to do and me being strong enough to take the leap and the ‘Thyme’, because it was the right time in my life. The name reminds me of how strong I am and that I made the right decision for this time in my life.
What types of planting services do you offer?
I offer seasonal outdoor plantings as well as guidance in design and providing containers for the outdoor space. I style homes and businesses with indoor plants. I walk the space, offer suggestions, order, deliver and set-up. I also offer unique interior plant gardens and gifts that I hand-deliver locally.
What towns on the North Shore do you work in?
My studio is in Boxford and I deliver to most surrounding towns. I try to keep my outdoor planting clients a little closer, but if my schedule allows for the season I will happily accommodate.
What are some of your favorite plants for outdoors and for indoors?
That’s a tough one. I have favorites for every season. I love pansies and use them both Spring & Fall. I love sedum because it can take the heat and sun and gets massive in the Summer. I love using evergreen trees in the Winter for longevity and texture. For inside, I love snake plants because they come in so many sizes and they are hard to kill. You also can’t go wrong with an orchid plant. They should give you up to 3 months of blooms and then I like to switch it out for a new one. It’s like having a flower arrangement all the time. And, orchids make great gifts.
Do you offer planting throughout the year? Or just specific seasons?
I plant all 4 seasons. I hate being cold so I wear my work snow pants when planting in winter and I have ice fishing gloves that help to keep my hands warm.
Do you offer plants as holiday gifts?
I have a pretty selection of holiday plants and gifts. My staple teacher gift is called a ‘sprout’ plant. It’s cute, fits on a desk and has a great price-point. It’s dropped into a gift bag with a card message and delivered directly to your child’s school. I always deliver to local schools free of charge because I love teachers. This year I am actually offering living greens centerpieces as well as planted gardens.
What’s the best way for moms to shop with you?
The best way to shop is on my website, which I have just switched over to accepting credit cards and an, “Add to Cart,” Button (which is a big deal for me). I am hoping making this process easier for customers will increase traffic and sales.
Any tips for balancing work & motherhood?
I only work Monday through Friday and I don’t work nights. So my nights and weekends are for spending time with my kids and husband. That is a huge boundary for me. And I know I possibly lose business because of that choice because there are so many evening and weekend events. But, it’s really important to me. With that said I AM doing a Holiday Pop-Up on Saturday, December 9th at Beached Goods, in Danvers. Sometimes I make exceptions, but rarely.
What is the best piece of mom advice you ever received?
It’s ok to ask for help when you need it. It’s ok to say no if you need to. Give yourself grace. We are all doing the best we can…everyday.
What’s your favorite thing to do when you need some “me” time?
I love walking and doing yoga. And sometimes just putting my pjs on early and making a cup of chai tea and watching Netflix does the trick perfectly.
Find Oak & Thyme at www.oakandthymeco.com. Meagan is also on Instagram @oakandthymeco. And don’t miss the Oak & Thyme Holiday Pop Up at Beached Goods, in Danvers, on 12/9 from 11am-3pm. Shop for Grab & Go holiday plants and centerpieces. Plus have the option to bring in your own container to be planted while you shop.
This post is sponsored by Oak & Thyme but all of the opinions present are my own.