When Amy Mills and her husband Chris set out to adopt the infant they were fostering, they knew their life would be filled with joy and challenges. They just didn't know one of the challenges would be cancer.
Mid-way into the adoption process, Mills learned she had Stage 3 breast cancer. The diagnosis set her on a path to push fearlessly ahead and do what she always wanted to do in life. Within a year, she was cancer-free, a new mom, and CEO of her own business—a web-based consignment shop that curates and sells children's clothing for newborns through tweens.
Mills launched Molly & Oliver's
in March 2014. Since then, she's grown the business from web-only to one with retail space within Mother and Earth Baby Boutique
in Old Town. She's added two interns and is planning to bring a photographer on board this summer. She's also known to do occasional "pop-up" events, with her most recent being an upcoming fundraiser to benefit cancer research through the Aitch Foundation.
"It's difficult enough to go through having cancer as an adult, let alone being a kid," says Mills. "This fundraiser is a way to reach out and raise money and awareness about childhood cancer."
Molly & Oliver's pop-up fundraiser will take place June 20 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Mother and Earth Baby Boutique. Coordinated by Molly & Oliver's intern Ashley Mugnolo, the event coincides with Old Town's annual Festival of the Sun,
and will feature kids activities like face painting, balloon making, and Italian ice and gelato from Iorio's Gelateria.
Shoppers will find an assortment of casual-dressy summer attire for infants through 4T sizes, with 20 percent of the sales going to support the Aitch Foundation.
The Aitch Foundation was founded five years ago by former Michigan State University women's basketball player Lauren Aitch. The foundation raises money for research into the early detection of hidden cancers, and will also be holding the annual Hidden Key Fashion Show fundraiser and fashion show on Monday, June 22.
"Our goal is to attract a large crowd," says Mills of her support for the local cause with a national scope. "We would love to be able to hit the 'grand' mark fundraising-wise."
Source: Amy Mills, Owner, Molly & Oliver's
Writer: Ann Kammerer, News Editor