Looking like a trailer

It looks like I might need to get a trailer and not a cart.  With frozen yogurt, you are dealing with dairy (even though I’ll be mostly vegan) and it seems I’ll have a better chance of getting approved by the health department and the cities I want to sell in with a trailer.

The good news is that this solves the problem of how I transport it from place to place.  With a trailer, I just hook it up to my car and go. The bad news is it will be more expensive.

I searched the internet, and there really isn’t a trailer that exists that fits the bill for Yoga-urt.  It looks like if I do this, I will have to have one custom built for me.  After doing some research, I found a place in Los Angeles that will put together the plans that I need to submit to the health department.  I still have no idea if I can afford to build the actual trailer, but I met with the guy on Saturday and told him what I wanted.  As small as possible. Aluminum (instead of steel) so I can paint on it.  Generators.  Enclosed vs. Unenclosed.  I wanted unenclosed but he told me the health department will want it enclosed.  Square vs. Rectangle. etc. etc.  It was a very enlightening visit as he filled me in on how this would work.

He did not give me a price yet to build the cart and I was too scared to ask.  Once the plans are done in a week or so, I’ll get the price then. Regardless of the price, I’ve decided to go ahead and have the plans done so I know what this thing could be.  Also, once I have the plans, if I can’t afford to have the cart built by this company, I might be able to find a welder who can build the trailer for me within my budget which would be a huge relief.

I’ve also almost decided that I’m going to take the next step and submit the plans to the health department.  The company that is creating the plans will deal with the health department as part of their fee so it seems like a good way to do it.  However, I’m giving myself permission to change my mind on that if I want, as this can be done at any time.

Timing wise, once the plans are approved by the health department, I’ll have one year to build the trailer.  If I decide to move forward on the build immediately, between the health department and the actual construction, the soonest it would be ready would be August (1 month for health department, 2 months for construction).  That’s half way through summer and so it makes me think maybe I should aim for summer 2015 instead of this summer.  Then I can slow down a little, work my ass off the rest of this year saving money, and then get everything ready for next year.  Hmmm.  It will be interesting to see how this all unfolds!

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My New Idea

So, the idea that came to me a few weeks ago is to get a frozen yogurt cart that I can take to a few yoga studios this summer to test out the interest in my business.  I received an email for a frozen yogurt cart, as I’m signed up to get notified when frozen yogurt equipment goes on sale.  I’m not sure why, but something struck me when I saw this cart.  I immediately started to think about what a Yoga-urt branded cart would look like and how cool it would be to take it around to a few studios this summer on the weekends (as I work full-time during the week).

The more I thought about it, the more excited I got.

There are a few problems though.  I know nothing about this mobile food facility (got that term from the health department website) business.  My original business plan was totally different.  I don’t know anything about carts (especially health department approved ones), cities that allow you to vend, generators, costs for all of this, etc.  So I have spent the last few weeks talking to the health department, talking to a bunch of city halls, calling companies that build or sell carts, following up on yogurt leads, looking for a froyo machine I can rent, etc. etc. etc.

I’m still in this process.  Originally, I was thinking I would spend a couple thousand, but it’s clear now that amount won’t cover half of it.  How much money am I willing to spend on this?  I don’t know.  Luckily, I’m working and my job situation seems like it will be good for the foreseeable future.  This allows me the chance to take a small risk (although I’ll be working like 80 hours a week between my job and Yoga-urt).

Can I afford this?  Is it legally possible?  Will it look good?  Is there the interest I think there is?  Am I crazy?  That’s just a few of my many questions.

More to come…

The last 8 months…

It’s been about 8 months since my last post.  That’s a long time.  Although I’ve never given up on Yoga-urt, it hasn’t been my focus during this time.  I’ve been working.  I was at one job and then was let go because things were slow and started another job.  I’ve been at the new place for over 6 months now and so far so good.

As for Yoga-urt, after 2 years of looking for investors, I came to the realization that this might not be the way this happens.  I either need a miracle or I will have to work to save the money myself.  So I’ve been working, working, working, and taking lots of yoga classes whenever I can.  Yoga is my happy place and continues to support me on this journey.

When people would ask me about Yoga-urt, I would say that I’m open for a miracle and haven’t given up, just don’t know what to do.

The good news is a new Yoga-urt idea came to me a few weeks ago that I’m actually really excited about and it might be something I can fund myself.  I am in the process of researching the costs and the laws surrounding my idea to see if I should and can move forward.  It’s something that I never imagined myself doing, let alone getting excited about, but that’s really true for this entire Yoga-urt journey.  Life is funny and yoga has taught me to stay open and that’s what I’m trying to do.  I’m open to the gifts that the universe has for me.

More to come soon…