AUBURN TOWNSHIP, Ohio - When the philosopher penned the phrase "give light and the people will find their way," regardless of whether he knew it, he was providing a lighted pathway for a Geauga County, Ohio, family to follow as the family members found not only a profitable business, but found a greatness in themselves.
In a small workshop nestled quietly behind their home in Auburn Township, there is the distinctive smell of honey and beeswax. Inside, busy as the bees that made the products, are members of family making soap, face creams, candles and other products.
Theirs is a story that really began several years ago when the matriarch, Louise Nowicki, made soap only for her personal use. On occasion, she made enough soap for her friends, who loved how smooth her homemade product made skin.
"Customers kept saying you got to make some cream, so I said OK," said Nowicki as she busied herself making her Morning Song Gardens cream. "So I made the cream and they were putting it on their faces and they were looking better."
It was in the late 1990s the business began. Morning Song Gardens is made exclusively in the family's home in Auburn Township. Eventually, Louise's husband, Fred, and their children, Steve, Christine, Cheryl and Karen, got involved. The soaps and creams are all made with honey and beeswax, which the family buys from Ohio beekeepers.
The company has found success with its products -- all natural -- which may be purchased in some stores and online. Whole Foods in northeast Ohio is well aware of the Nowicki family, which stocks store shelves with its products. The company also makes candles made entirely of beeswax. The candles burn with no soot because there are no petroleum products in them.
Each of the adult children have an assigned task in the small workshop. Their father, Fred, handles most of the computer work. Before he was laid off from his job several years ago, he was a computer specialist. Although the younger Nowickis live away from their parents' home, they are back throughout the workweek, making candles in a variety of shapes and filling containers with creams based on honey and beeswax.
However, it was not Louise's intention to go into business for a profit when she began the operation. She wanted her children to know each other better.
"The family is drawn together and we help each other out," she said. "We've gotten to know each other like we haven't known each other for a long time."
The business drew its name from a passage in Psalms 30 in the Bible: 'Tears can last for the night, but a song of joy comes in the morning."
"That's the way life is," said Louise. She said she prayed for her family to maintain its strength and for each member to relate well with others in the family. Morning Song Gardens, makers of all-natural soaps, creams and candles, is making a profit. Inside the little workshop behind the house, the members of the Nowicki family are busy fashioning their products.
In the corner is Louise, busy herself, but also thanking God for granting the family a business. All she ever wanted was for all the members of the family to work together in harmony. They are doing that, but also finding a profit along the way.
Throughout their house are family-made candles made of beeswax. They are often burning representing hope, home and the heart. The Nowickis have all of them because of the dream of a mother who daily prays for the best for her husband, their children and herself.
The company website is http://morningsonggardens.com