Lubbock small business owners reflect on 2022, hopeful for new year

Orange Blossoms Boutique set up at Wolfforth Farmer's Market.
Orange Blossoms Boutique set up at Wolfforth Farmer's Market.(KCBD, Peyton Toups)
Published: Dec. 31, 2022 at 5:07 PM CST
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - While many people are resolving to eat better or go to the gym more, some vendors at the Wolfforth Farmers Market are just hoping to keep their businesses afloat.

“I love when you meet people or when somebody tries on something and it makes them feel beautiful. I love to see that excitement on their face,” Mackenzie Naranjo, owner of Orange Blossoms Boutique, said. “So, I hope to keep doing that through 2023.”

Amanda Rakhshandeh is the owner of Pet Wants Lubbock. She’s hoping for another year similar to 2022.

“We provide nutritional solutions and healthy options for people’s fur babies, so it was really rewarding to have some success doing that,” Rakhshandeh said.

These business owners faced a lot of challenges in 2022.

“I think it was the supply issues are really what we had a hard time with, just getting products and things like that,” Mark Woods, owner of Otter Mountain, said. “Now, it’s kind of been resolved a little bit, but for a while it was hard to find hats, and shirts, and things like that, to print them.”

Annie Sandifer, owner of Sweet Jean’s Pantry, had similar supply chain issues.

“Supply chain and costs of goods - egg prices. We put egg in our mustard and that has really more than doubled,” Sandifer said.

While it was still hard to maintain a business this year, Naranjo with Orange Blossoms Boutique said she still had better luck than in 2021 and saw a lot of growth.

“I’m thankful that Orange Blossoms Boutique has grown to what it is today,” Naranjo said. “It’s not exactly where I want it but I’m thankful for each and every one of my customers that comes and shops with me whether it’s a pair of earrings or several items.”

Sandifer says a lot has changed in her business Sweet Jean’s Pantry.

“We’ve expanded, so it’s been really fun to take our product from just doing cottage law sales to commercial selling, selling it,” Sandifer said. “We expanded our product line to three types of mustard.”

Sandifer’s secret ingredient to staying motivated is to remind herself why she started the business in the first place.

“I always try to focus on those good days and just like, ‘Okay, this is what I want to do. I have a purpose for doing it,’” Sandifer said. “This is a mustard my mom started making back in the ‘70s and she always wanted to do this, and now she’s 84-years-old, so we’re doing it for her.”

All of the owners hope 2023 will bring lots of business to allow them to keep pursuing their passion.