Photo: Pictured above, mother-daughter duo Deborah Carter (left) and Kendall Marker (right) stand beside one of their homemade yard cards. Photo courtesy of Kendall Marker.
By Katie Bohannon, News Editor
For as long as mother-daughter duo Debora Carter and Kendall Marker can remember, they wanted to dive into the event business. In April of 2020, those dreams were realized as the pair embarked on a new journey to deliver messages of joy and hope to their community in the midst of an uncertain world.
Carter and Marker understand the importance of treasuring memories. When the COVID-19 pandemic swept the nation, they began to witness heartbreak and distress in families, tragedy and turmoil that tainted precious moments and stole significant milestones from people’s lives. Though the pair spread cheer through planning baby and bridal showers and painting murals in the past, the opportunity to make a difference in the present fell right into their laps.
When their friend Christy Mayo approached them about taking over her yard sign business, Carter and Marker were astounded. Though Mayo ran a successful business for two years, she reached a transitioning point in her life where she was unable to continue, and felt God led her to Carter and Marker to pick up where she left off.
In that moment, Making Memories Yard Cards was born.
“We believe that even when things look bleak and out of your control, that is the very moment when God steps in and shows out,” said Marker. “When COVID-19 hit suddenly, everyone was looking for a ray of sunshine. God just laid the keys in our hands!”
Though Carter owns Making Memories and Marker assists her mother, running a business is nothing new to either of them. Growing up, Marker said that her family always kept several irons in the fire. She recalls times when all family members operated full time jobs and two businesses out of their home at the same time. She joked that when the phone rang at her house, callers were never greeted with a simple hello, but “Christians Tree Service, how may I help you?”
Making Memories specializes in yard signs for every occasion, from birthdays to anniversaries to back-to-school celebrations. Designed to offer customizable cards, Making Memories was developed to allow people to celebrate significant moments without compromising their health and protecting their loved ones. They currently have a growing list of wedding rental items such as arbors, wine barrels and cake swings. Marker noted that regardless of the event or circumstance, Making Memories is capable of creating a personalized card enriched with detail, geared towards each person’s wants and wishes. From giant cakes to massive laptops to graduation caps, if a customer imagines it, Making Memories will bring that dream to pass.
“Making people smile is the best thing ever,” said Marker. “God knew we needed to be in a place where we could serve others and be able to reap the reward of being a bright spot in the middle of a pandemic. Most of these people didn’t plan on being stuck in their homes for their birthday or anniversary. They didn’t plan on missing the birth of a grandbaby or hugging their elderly grandparents…yet, these are the times we live in. We have had the pleasure of helping people to express their love for each other and protect each other at the same time.”
While Carter and Marker share a vision for promoting optimism and demonstrating kindness to all who come across their path, their incredible relationship with one another ensures that they have fun while they work. Never a dull moment between the two, Carter and Marker prove that in the business of spreading joy, it never hurts to minister happiness among themselves.
“It’s like working with your best friend,” said Marker. “We call each other Lucy and Ethel. Most of our cards go out after dark so that they can be a surprise come morning. So, most nights you’ll see Lucy and Ethel bumbling around in the dark trying to keep from hurting each other! This is the most fun either of us has ever experienced in life. Who would have thought that all of those dreams of working together would look quite like this? Sneaking around peoples’ homes with 8-foot flamingos and birthday cakes, with stakes and mallets trying our middle-aged hardest to be quiet. We giggle and laugh and sweat, and we wouldn’t want it any other way!”
Together, Carter and Marker shine as bright lights on a cloudy day. The dynamic duo hope that through their efforts, people can still find happiness in those treasured moments in life that mean so much. Despite the distance between some families during this time, Carter and Marker prove that with a little creativity, the room to protect irreplaceable memories will forever remain in people’s hearts.
“We hope people gain happiness from Making Memories Yard Cards,” said Marker. “We hope they know that someone cares. Even if the sign is not in your card, we want you to feel happy. If but for a brief moment of relief from a bad day, [we want people to] remember God’s love is real, it’s everywhere and somebody cares.
“In our family, God is first, and family and friends come next. Our family always says, ‘It’s not the quantity of time you spend together, it’s the quality of time you spend together.’ We may not have seen each other every second of every day, and it was always crazy busy around our home, but my parents always made sure we made memories. They are really great memories, and looking back on good times will help you make it through the rough times. I think we all need that [now] more than ever.”
For more information on Making Memories Yard Cards, visit facebook.com/makingmemoriesyardcards.