Updated: Jun 30, 2022
Welcome to another installment of the Rooted Minds’ Spotlight Feature, where we shine a light on creatives, artists, and entrepreneurs that are making strides to take their careers to the next level. This is a space where we can celebrate the success stories of members of our community, friends, and newly discovered creatives.
I hope that the 2022 has been good to you so far!
Our spotlights are the perfect opportunity for us to introduce our supporters to new creatives and brands that are making tremendous strides in their fields. Our goal is to continue to find stories that we can celebrate and amazing people we can connect with our readers.
This feature includes an entrepreneur in our Phoenix Community that has been growing and looking for new ways to connect. You can find her out in the community at various markets grinding to gain new customers and exposure for her brand. She's supported some of our I Am Root Events and we are glad to be able to connect with her and learn more about her journey.
Ciara "MommaC" Bennett is a self-taught chef, #MomBoss, founder, and CEO of Vintageoats. Bennett is a trauma healing advocate and has an Instagram @healingwmommac, where she discusses healing from trauma, God, and motherhood. Bennett's motto for life is #healtheblackfamily and she strives to show and share that regardless of where you come from or who your parents are or even the mistakes you have made, restoration and growth is still possible. Bennett is currently operating Vintage Oats in the Phoenix Metro Area.
INTERVIEW: VINTAGE OATS
RM: Rooted Minds
VO: Vintage Oats
RM: What has been your journey to being an artist OR owning your own business and what has been the most impactful lesson that you've learned?
VO: I started Vintageoats back in 2017 with 0 knowledge about business or granola. The Past 5 years have been very difficult and a roller-coaster ride of emotions and fear of the unknown. One of the greatest lessons that I've learned in business is that your business can only be as stable and as good as you are. I started my business when I was only 24 years old. I had a lot of unhealed trauma and low self-esteem which showed up in everything I did. When it comes to business it's so important to know who you are and to not rely on other people's okay for you to move forward. Thank God in 2020 after giving birth to my 3rd child I started my healing journey and started to overcome my past mistakes, my tainted perception of myself and all the shame I carried for all those years. After a year of focusing on myself, counseling and becoming the best mother I could be I finally had clarity on my brand, what I wanted and what it took to get there. Throughout the past 5 years my greatest lesson was to heal myself so that everything I did I showed up whole and with clarity. Within the past Year i have had more opportunities and doors open then i have ever had in the past 4 years. My brand is growing, and I have learned how to show up not only as my authentic self but as the CEO and Founder that God has created me to be. Everything starts with you. HEAL.
RM: For those that may not know, how did you come up with the name or concept for your business or project?
VO: Before starting Vintageoats I had never eaten granola and didn't even know what it was. I was around so many people who knew what they wanted to be, so I began to pray for a purpose outside of kids, my looks, and a relationship. After a year of prayer and believing that there was more for me, I woke up with the whole vision for Vintageoats. I can't take credit for the brand and how it came about but I can take credit for the name lol I choose VintageOats mainly because I used to LOVE vintage clothes, vintage furniture literally everything Vintage. Once I did my research, I found out the synonym for Vintage is high-quality, Prime, Choice, select, superior, and best which described everything that I liked. So that's how VintageOats came about. The greatest thing is the name truly described my brand and what it stands for. The quality is premium, Gluten-Free, and vegan. I created all 8 of my granola recipes from scratch which really gives my brand that extra edge.
RM: Tell us about your inspiration behind an upcoming project and what do you hope the audience takes away from it?
VO: Right now, I am in the process of rebranding Vintageoats. I am very excited to grow my brand and expand in the United States. I have had the honor of being in the presence of so many powerful women that have encouraged me to show my face, be the brand, and show more behind the scenes. So that is what I am working on daily.
RM: What have been some effective ways that you've marketed yourself in your space and industry?
VO: To be honest I truly believe my ability to communicate and people skills have helped me grow my brand more than anything. People follow People, so once people see you are kind, you're a pleasure to deal with that alone will set you apart and create opportunities. Right now, I am running VintageOats solo which also brings a very personal feel to my brand which people truly appreciate.
RM: How have you grown as an entrepreneur or creative in the last 5 years and who's been influential in that process?
VO: I've grown tremendously in the past 5 years as a woman which has directly positively impacted my confidence as an entrepreneur. If you want to be successful, you must take calculated risks and You must bet on yourself. I have had 2 people who believed in my brand from day 1 shout out to my sister Meishael and Mr.Cox. My father is a serial entrepreneur and I have had the luxury to have him in my corner for the past year to help guide me and push me towards becoming my best. Eric Thomas also Known as the Hip Hop preacher has been my go-to motivational speaker/ preacher. My mother is an AVP (Assistant Vice President) of a large corporate company, she was a young mother who had to grind her way to the top with no one's help or guidance. She did it with so much class and grace and it inspires me daily. She showed me to never allow your past, where you have come from, or who your parents are to hold you back from accomplishing great things. I learned very early on that if you work hard and get out of a victim mindset anything is possible. My children are my biggest cheerleaders, they are so proud of me. I do everything I do for them.
RM: What are some short-term goals that you are working towards, that friends and supporters can help you with?
VO: I want to grow my online presence and increase my sales online. I have a website where people all over the United States can order. The best way to support is to try my product. Even if you have never tried granola or don't think it's your thing give it try and see if what I say actually matches what my brand offers :)
RM: What are one or two things that keep you grounded? How do you practice good self-care or how can you practice it better (if you've been lacking in that area)?
VO: God. Just that simple. I keep my mind set on the promises of God Jeremiah 29:11 - "For I know the plans I have for you" declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future" I keep my circle super small and hang out with like-minded people. I take life very seriously and understand every decision I make will impact my future. I do not live a life based on my emotions and what feels good, but I try my best to live a disciplined life which ultimately helps me stay focused on what matters most (God, Me, My peace, my spirit, My kids and my family)
RM: What are some words of wisdom or encouragement for upcoming creative entrepreneurs that you'd like to share?
1. Invest in healing yourself.
2. Go to counseling and face the worst parts of yourself and once you do everything else will flow.
3. Understand that 97% of people will not support you truly but don't let that stop you.
4. Understand a lack of support doesn't discredit your vision.
5. Do not try to people please and seek validation
6. Be kind and know you can be nice and still set boundaries.
7. Do it scared.
8. Don't wait for everything to be perfect to start.
9. Start now.
10. You are who you hang out with, level up your circle and friends.
11. Your Character matters.
RM: What has been the best piece of advice you have ever received in reference to your career and industry?
1. Don't be afraid of being great.
2. None of us know what we are doing some people are just willing to try. TRY.
3. Giving 100% is just enough you must give 120% to get to the next level.
Thanks for your support and for checking out this feature. You can check out her brand and positive affirmations here
Ciara Packages ”HARVEST” - Vintage Oats
Dom orders his first pack of Vintage Oats
I ordered a medium sized bag of the Pro-Pack from the Vintage Oats website to take advantage of a free-shipping sale! I received my package within 3 business days and everything was packaged perfectly. The product itself tasted goog, I wasn’t the biggest fan of dark chocolate, but the Protein Pack was mixed really well and it goes creat with my morning coffee or mixed in with some of my favorite snacks. I believe that I’ve eaten some everyday since I received my order.
LINKS to the Vintage Oats
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More about Dom Root
I am from Inglewood, California, and currently working in Phoenix, Arizona as a Sound Engineer (Live, Recording, and Mixing). I am a Music Producer and Creative Artist looking to build a portfolio and for live performance opportunities. I graduated from Arizona State University studying Creative Writing and Philosophy. I later studied audio production technologies at Mesa Community College, before taking on more freelance work.