So what's a southern family from big-city Atlanta doing in small-town Mt. Dora owning and operating a Parisian-inspired boutique with a vintage vibe? Well it's a crazy story that started like this...
Marti studies French/Int'l Business at Auburn University (too many years ago to mention the year) and dreams of owning a boutique on the streets of Paris.
Realizing that dream is going to be very unlikely, Marti changes majors to Information Systems, graduates, gets a big corporate job and begins living the "revised" dream.
Along comes her soul mate, Steve, they get married, both work very hard making moves up the corporate ladder, but life was way too stressful!
Marti says, "this dream isn't for me," and decides to quit her job to spend more time with her dear mother who had become sick and to also focus on starting her own family.
Marti has always loved the Victorian era, its furnishings, its architecture, so when an opportunity to start a B&B/Special Events Facility in an 1860's Victorian farmhouse came up, they jumped at it.
Shortly after, Marti and Steve were blessed with a beautiful daughter, Savannah. The business took up many weekends which was Steve's time off from his corporate job and interfered with family time. It still didn't feel like this was "the dream" either! This is when Marti decided to stop trying to control her life and instead let God do the driving and boy, did He!
He opened a door in a little boutique in Mt. Dora, The Secret Garden, showed her and family without a doubt that this was HIS plan, and they needed to follow... so they did... and now are living "the ultimate dream"... His dream, His plan.
Since purchasing The Secret Garden in 2007, Marti has rebranded the boutique giving the vintage feel of the store a new twist... a French twist! Yes finally we see that French background fitting in there... And Marti has given The Secret Garden a feel of the 1920's... a time of romance, great fashion, and fun! She has also expanded The Secret Garden to include specialty little girls dresses and Plus sizes for Women, in addition to the unique one of a kind jewelry and accessories from many talented local artists.
Her husband, Steve, joined the team in April of 2014, bringing his skills of business process engineering and software to the table. He is responsible for Operations and getting The Secret Garden online so followers across the country and abroad can purchase the lovely, unique items found in their store.
Marti and her family have been so blessed over the years. Marti and her wonderful team of assistants who have been with her over 5 years, love helping ladies find their feminine, frilly side and offer exceptional customer service... they'll even sell you the shirt off their back if you want it and have several times!
So that's how The Secret Garden, a little boutique in Mt. Dora with things now available online, came to be... a much bigger blessing than the Schwab's could ever of imagined! Thank you God!