We have a very serious obsession with good granola, and we have been known to get a smidgeon ecstatic over a company that hits our sweet-spot both literally and figuratively, which is exactly what happened when we first came across Laureh Rhew and Nothin’ But Nola. We stalked her on Instagram and obsessed over the flavors that we couldn’t wait to get our hands on (looking at you Main Squeeze), as well as the bright cute and clean image we were seeing. We won’t spoil it all up here, but suffice to say we are completely smitten. So grab some granola, settle down and lets #fighthunger with Lauren.
Tell us about the start of Nothin’ But Nola! What was the inspiration and how were you able to capture it?
I majored in Business and Entrepreneurship in college. I quickly fell in love with everything I was learning. I looked forward to reading my business textbooks (crazy, I know!) and spent my spare time watching TED talks. I knew that one day I would start my own business. At the same time, I developed a passion for health and nutrition. I didn’t realize it at the time, but both of these passions would soon collide and lead me in the direction of my dreams.
After graduating from college, I struggled for the first two years trying to figure out this “big girl” world. I wasn’t happy with the work I was doing and spent a lot of time trying to figure it out. Meanwhile, my beautiful mother, Leslie, had been baking this granola that was taking taste buds by storm! We had friends and people we’d never met asking to buy to it. So, with her so-good-you’ll-dance recipe and my business background, we joined forces and Nothin’ but Nola was born!
Something that we love about Nothin’ But Nola is your #fighthunger campaign. Could you tell us more about that effort and how it started?
I couldn’t be happier that you asked! When we started the business, we knew we wanted it to be about so much more than granola and healthy snacking. We wanted our granola to be the catalyst for changing the world. So we created our One Bag. One Meal. program. For every bag of our granola purchased, one healthy, nutritious, meal is donated to #fighthunger. We believe every person has the right to healthy and nutritious food. So, we strive to create a granola that helps nourish and feed our wonderful customers as well as the many families who are struggling with hunger. One in six people in the US struggles with hunger on a daily basis. Nearly 16 million children in the US are facing hunger, not knowing where their next meal will come from. We created Nothin’ but Nola to change that.
What is your favorite snack to pair with your granola?
Dark chocolate. Chocolate. Chocolate. And a little more chocolate. If you know me (or follow me online), you know that my love for chocolate is slightly out of control!! If you have a sweet tooth like me, adding some dark chocolate chips to our Goin’ Nuts granola is truly delicious! Or granola-topped brownies. Or a granola and fresh fruit parfait layered with a chocolate-nut spread. I could go on, but I’ll stop there!
You started this business with your mom, how has that benefitted you? How do you work together in a partnership?
My sweet mom is the greatest inspiration. She is such a beautiful soul and has encouraged me unconditionally throughout this business journey. We work together really well and allow our strengths to support each others’ weaknesses. She is the NBN recipe creator. Delicious granola creation is her forte (just taste our granola)! The marketing and business end of things is my passion and is where I spend most of my time. When I’m in a creative rut, though, I just call my mom. Her creativity amazes me! Being business partners with my mother in this amazing adventure has really allowed our strengths to shine. It’s also been one of the most rewarding mother-daughter adventures!
What advice do you have for twenty-somethings who want to start their own businesses?
Go for it. Dream up your biggest, most amazing, scariest dream ever, and make it happen. There are so many reasons why you shouldn’t try it. There are a thousand ways you could potentially fail. And if you give yourself enough time, there are a million excuses you’ll come up with for why you should “just wait”. Don’t listen to the naysayers. Listen to your heart and go chase that dream. Every dream started with a decision … a decision to start. Why tomorrow? Or next month? No time will be more perfect than right now!
What word do you think describes the twenty-something years?
Adventure. Your twenty-something years are full of adventure. Little and big adventures. Exciting and scary adventures. Some of the greatest learning adventures of your life. New adventures. Old adventures. These years are full of beautiful growth, getting to know yourself after college, figuring out your passions, and chasing after your dreams. It’s been one of the greatest adventures of my life thus far!
It’s the perfect Saturday morning, what can we find you doing?
You would find me sneaking out of bed early to revel in those early morning quiet moments – they’re my favorite. Those moments when the sun has just risen and the world is just starting to wake up. I like to fix a cup of hot tea and curl up on the couch with my journal or a good book and get lost in this beautiful life. Then, a good ol’ heart-to-heart chat with my fiancé over brunch makes for a happy heart!
What are two things about you that we wouldn’t know from following you on social media?
One- My energy levels rival that of the Energizer Bunny!! I don’t pull all nighters and I still need 7-8+ hours of sleep a night. But during my waking hours, I go non-stop. Stopping, just being, is really, really hard for me. I just keep going, going, going…!!!
Two- I’m really, really loud. I tend to get excited very easily and my voice level reflects that. I once worked in this large call center like environment, and I was the loudest person on the entire floor!! It was slightly embarrassing and led to me being very hoarse for about two weeks. I just can’t help it. My voice level is a direct reflection of my passion level, which is usually very high!
How do you turn a bad day around?
I choose to be happy. I believe that happiness is a choice (easier some days than others). So, when I’m having a bad day, I try to find the good sense to step back and take a look at what’s going on. More often than not, when I’m having a bad day, I’m looking at things from a negative perspective. I’m allowing others’ choices or words or bad moods to affect how I feel. So, I remind myself that I’m the only one with the power to change my mood. We all too often give others the power and forget we can choose happiness for ourselves. It’s such a simple and beautiful thing. And if all else fails, I eat a little chocolate!!
Did we miss something? What else should we know about you?
After embarking on the beautiful journey of entrepreneurship I realized a great need for real honesty in the world of boss ladies and entrepreneurship. Starting and running my own business has been one of the hardest, most exhausting and depleting things I have ever done. Although the beautifully-edited photos on social media tell you otherwise, it is not glamorous and it is not easy. I wanted to share this truth and honesty with other boss ladies. I wanted to inspire and encourage them. I also realized a need for real, actionable business advice. When I was first starting out, it was very difficult to find the answers to basic business questions. I want to provide these answers alongside vital business solutions. So, I created Grit and Glitter – the ideal space for boss ladies and women entrepreneurs to come to for inspiration and actionable business advice. I’m launching a website very, very soon (and you’re one of the first ones to know!), but for now, Grit and Glitter lives on Instagram (@gritandglitter) and Twitter (@grit_glitter).
For more on this sassy success visit www.nothinbutnola.com