Spring brings change to Meadballs

Meadballs is undergoing some changes. The weekly delivery service is finished. Instead I plan to offer fresh salads using seasonal greens, veggies, and grilled protein at area farmer’s markets. The locations and dates will be posted here, and e-mailed out to subscribers of my newsletter.

Why the change?

The main reason is that I will be going to nursing school full-time at Mercyhurst North East, graduating in 2020. Ideally I will be taking a couple of classes this summer to get back into the groove of the classroom – a place I haven’t spent any serious time since graduating from Boston University more than 30 years ago.

In the time since then, and even during college, I was a journalist. When the time came to leave the newspaper business two years ago, I was looking for my part 2.0. I applied to nursing school then – a different university – but didn’t get into the program.

So I stuck to what I knew – writing, freelancing, blogging. That worked for nearly a year, until my income source ceased accepting my freelance pitches.

Why? The company knows the answer. It wasn’t shared with me.

That meant it was time to consider 2.1, which included a food truck selling baked goods. Given the negative health effects of sugar, I switched it up to something healthier, which eventually became Meadballs. Three meals, featuring regionally sourced foods – delivered once a week.

My customers were/are great. They were incredibly supportive. They suffered through some of my experiments (some items don’t travel well, or work well in large quantities); and I learned about the many underserved health and dietary concerns  – such as offering gluten-free foods (like salad dressings, soups, etc), and vegan prepared foods that don’t star tofu- or soybean-based impersonations of cheeses, meats, etc.

My business model was built on this being a 15-hour-a-week job, with a related income. This was to give me time to travel, be a mom, and enjoy hiking, kayaking, and the like (in no particular order). The the plan to deliver Wednesdays (like Blue Apron) was replaced by demand for Monday (who wants to cook on Monday?), and limited weekend getaways.

January is always a time to look forward – so I looked at where I wanted to be in 2020 when my daughter graduates from high school. I needed work that could go anywhere in the country – or world. And that was in high demand (not true of journalists). And I was back at nursing.

And that also meant taking an entrance exam. For three weeks I  immersed myself  in algebra and biology. I can’t tell you how incredible Khan Academy and Crash Course were. Combined with a print study guide, I relearned subjects that  hadn’t paid any attention to in 35 years (and I swear some of the stuff I never learned at all, clearly). In February, my score was high enough to get me into the RN program, instead of the LPN program I originally applied for.

So here I am. I will be starting version 2.something just after I turn 55. I will graduate from Mercyhurst at the same time as my daughter does from Fairview High School.

And then we will both be packing our bags for the next chapter.