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Mindy and Mike

Mindy and Mike

Over the years, we've discovered that perception is what shapes our reality. When faced with this new recent "new reality" we've doubled down on what is important to us. We've owned several businesses together, and all of our endeavors have always been rooted in helping bring joy and happiness to people. This seems like the perfect time to refocus on that mission. From the first time we met, to this new venture with Orcas Island Leather, everything we seek to create and experience is done from the heart, with all of our heart. 

We enjoy getting to know the family-owned businesses that we purchase from, and we thought you might enjoy getting to know us too. :)

How did you and Mike first meet?
We met in 2001 while sea kayaking in Baja, Mexico. We've been together ever since and are still very much in love after 17 years of marriage.

Have you always been in the creative space?
Well, when Mike and I first met, I was working as an econometrician (yup, it's as nerdy as it sounds), and Mike was working as an engineer. So not really... Being good at things like math and science led us both to believe that the creative world was not for us. Discovering that creative side of ourselves has been a long journey of becoming more whole and more truly ourselves. 

Have you always worked together?
Yes, ever since we started our photography business in 2003, we have mixed personal and professional and had our home office desks side-by-side. It works great for us. I married my best friend, so it's definitely a win-win. Many of my friends couldn't imagine spending a couple of decades together with their spouse 24/7 but we couldn't imagine it another way. 

Do you have a family? 
We have three kids - twins Chase and Madeleine, and our younger son, Stellan. Our kids are amazing and are THE most important people in our lives. But we love our furry family too! We just recently adopted 3 black kittens from the same litter - Shadow, Echo and Vixen, plus we still have one senior cat, 1 overly affectionate golden retriever and a chinchilla aptly named Handsome.

How did you discover Orcas Island?
We first visited Orcas Island in 2015 while on the way to a French family camp on a tiny island in the Salish Sea (Canoe Island). We immediately fell in love with Orcas, and proclaimed we would move here when we retired. A month or two later, we realized nothing was actually stopping us from moving here other than all our thoughts that it was somehow "impossible." I have a long history of breaking through walls of seemingly impossible things, and after many return trips and a complete redesign of our professional lives, we were fortunate to call Orcas Island home in 2016.

What do you like to do in your free time?
What's free time? Lol, running a household with kids, pets and 2 businesses doesn't leave a lot of downtime. But we manage to get to the lakes, paddleboard out in the sea and hike as often as we can. Our favorite activities are having a few friends over for dinner and a bonfire, and staying up late on clear nights watching for shooting stars. 

What is your mantra?
Hmm, that's a hard question. When Mike and I are feeling scared or stressed, we say to each other, with all the force we can muster, "We've got this."  And with the kids it's simply, "I love you forever."