After ten years in business as Milk+Honey, we are changing our name to Love+Leche. Leche (pronounced “lay-chay”) is the Spanish word for milk. It’s what babies ask their mothers for (when they can talk!) and what I get from the goats, and what makes your skin feel so good when you use my soap. And of course, we all know what Love is . . . Read more about this transition on my blog. And read on to hear about our journey from ten years ago until now!
In 2005, as Milk+Honey, we debuted at the renowned Santa Fe Farmers Market, selling handmade goat milk soaps and beeswax lotion bars. My business was inspired by living a very modest, but satisfying Farm Life out in Glorieta, 20 minutes outside of Santa Fe, New Mexico. A typical day went like this:
“Every day I go out to milk my ‘girls.’ They greet me with a range of personalities: gentle, loud and demanding, patient, surly. They always appreciate being fed and scratched, and, with no sense of personal space, rub and push against me; I am part of the herd. In exchange for my caring for them, they give me their milk—rich, frothy, white and oh-so-fresh! Then there are the bees. Those girls are buzzing in and out, very busy, ignoring me. But when I open the hive every couple of weeks in the summer, I am greeted with a stunning gift of warm, sweet, golden honey—it seems too good to be true. Into the house these precious products come, and how can I describe the satisfaction and pride I feel as I watch my children dip their fingers into fresh honey, chew on beeswax, and drink fresh, cold milk? This milk, honey and beeswax goes right into my soap and lotion bars . . . and then I get to watch the delight and wonder on customers’ faces when they find out just what is in these products and where it came from! It is an honor to be able to share this bounty with strangers. . . who soon become loyal customers and friends.”
Since moving from Glorieta and into the “urban” environment of Santa Fe, I no longer keep my own bees, and my goats have gone to live with a lovely, country-singin’ cowboy, Archie West. But the focus and heart of my business remains unchanged: making beautiful, natural products with the bounty of rich goat milk and warm golden honey and beeswax–and satisfying customers who are astonished by the purity and efficacy of these products. And you can still find us every Saturday at the Santa Fe Farmers Market, all year ’round.
When you receive one of my soaps or lotion bars, they may have been hand-poured by my son Simon, and packaged by my daughter Roan. The packaging was designed by a local designer, and strives to be as green as possible for the size of my business: recyclable, reusable, re-giftable, or keepable-foreverable! The artisan designs were thoughtfully created as a collaboration between myself and local sculptor Stephanie Huerta, and when you use my products, well, you can read their comments and testimonials throughout this site. Please share your story with me as well!