We had the good fortune of connecting with Christine Hotchkiss and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Christine, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
I believe everyone has a story in their life that puts them on the journey of their lives. Some find purpose from their pain. My personal story is the passing of my 17 year old daughter Nicole Marie on New Year’s Day 2007. My family and I were in a rollover accident where my daughter Nicole was ejected from our vehicle. The years have moved forward but the memory and loss have been frozen in time. My purpose and mission is to help others heal, inspire and find hope again. Just because something different has happened to you, doesn’t mean you have to be treated different, act different or live different. I am inspired by those who can find joy again and live life as they are deserving. Sharing our personal journey’s/stories gives hope to someone who has walked or may walk a similar path. When you make a difference in someone’s life, you create magic within theirs.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I am the founder of the 501(c)(3) non-profit, Remember Me Always Foundation, Inc. and the podcast Stories of Hope. Both of these I founded based on my personal journey of loss. Tragedy changed my life but I won’t allow it to change my heart. Remember Me Always assists with in the moment necessities when putting a loved one to rest such as keepsake jewelry, headstones, urns, markers and medallions. My greatest joy and true passion is my podcast, Stories of Hope, but it wasn’t a podcast until April of 2020. Stories of Hope came to my mind in 2015 but I wasn’t certain as to what I was meant to do with it, so I just reserved the idea within my heart and went about my life. I have always been one to ask questions with curious intentions to always be in the “know” than to not know and be foolish thinking I knew. In other words I have always been intrigued with people and why they are the way they are. Whether by birth or by life’s circumstances. Through the last couple of years life has shown me joys and struggles and it has also taught me patience and wisdom with each person I encounter. I believe everyone has a story that is unique, just like our fingerprint that puts us on the journey or path of our lives. Some find purpose. In the fall of 2019 I took a leap of faith, not knowing what I was about to embark on. I was introduced to a couple who have a faith based internet station in California and in Arizona. We sat down and I shared my idea of what I wanted to achieve. It was there Stories of Hope was born. I had never spoke in front of a live camera, nor did I know anything about how a show was made. My experience with HSBN gave me not only the courage to speak in front of a live camera, and about loss but I also found comfort and confidence in being in my own skin with my story and journey, living life with loss. Stories of Hope is my way of paying it forward by being the platform and giving the voice for people to share the stories of their lives whether it be addiction, loss, recovery, illness or life situations. My mission with each story is to help, heal, inspire, educate, break stigmas and give hope. Along with individuals stories I also feature non-profit organizations and foundations within our communities, because they too have a story as to why they were founded and how they have become a liable resource for those in need.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
There are so many wonderful places to visit, and so many places to experiences. I believe every place has a special something for everyone, such as the ocean with the ocean air, sunrises, sunsets or just to sit on the beach with the sun on your skin, wind in your face and sand between your toes. We can’t leave out the forest, it too has so much to offer, such as the smell of the pines, oaks or birch, listening to the birds and getting lucky to spot wildlife roaming around. As silly as it may seem even the desert is beautiful with different types of cactus, animals, unique flowers, mountains or hills filled with different vegetation and even the different depths of not only sand and dirt color but the mountains. I have been blessed to see many different terrains and can’t say one place is my favorite because beauty is perceived by the eyes that see it.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I would not be the woman I am today if I had not experienced the joy of motherhood or being the oldest sister of 3. This Shoutout series I dedicate to my later daughter Nicole Marie, late sister Lisa and son Austin. My son Austin has been my rock, encouraging me with each step I take to achieving my mission of helping others live life to the fullest even though something different has happened to them. My journey has had loss, but it also has joy and love with each memory I cherish.
Other: https://open.spotify.com/show/6R6cLqq35XIbhpkPnjLof2 Spotify