By Kathleen Swift
Photos by Mandy Edmonson
For Travis Bolin and his daughter, Amelia, a dream led to a new business and a blessing.
“About 6 years ago, Amelia and I were in a life transition,” said Bolin. “During that time, Amelia, who was 6, started making slime. She made slime almost every day at our home. A few weeks into her new love of slime, I was in the kitchen cooking, and I said a short prayer, ‘Jesus, why is my daughter addicted to slime?’ I instantly knew the answer, ‘This is her therapy during this transition in life.’
“That week, I transformed our dining room into a slime room with glue, activator, deactivator, slime containers, jewels, beads and so much more. Our family and friends nicknamed her the Slime Queen. Amelia would have friends over to play, and most of the time the play involved making slime for hours. Amelia was the slime expert. She taught everyone how to make slime; how to make slime look pretty, smelly, crunchy and even how to deactivate slime if you want it a bit stretchier. She truly was the expert in slime making.”
Amelia never outgrew her love of slime, and at age 11, she asked her dad if she could open a slime business. Together, they brainstormed what that business might look like, and after looking at several locations found the shop at 2310 South Main, Joplin.
Bolin recalled, “The glass on the front door was very dusty. The glass was so thick with dust I had to wipe off a section of the glass just to see inside the empty building. As I was peeking through the glass, my daughter wrote on her section of those dusty windows, ‘Journey Through Slime July 3, 2021, Amelia was here.’ After I read what she wrote, I said, ‘Amelia, by faith this is where Journey Through Slime will be.’”
In another step of faith, Carlye, Bolin’s girlfriend, quit her job and joined the business as one of the co-owners. On October 23, 2021, Journey Through Slime Event Studio & Scoop Shoppe held a grand opening just 137 days after Amelia had the slime business idea.
“A year later, we are still going strong at Journey Through Slime Event Studio & Scoop Shoppe,” said Bolin. “We have 13 amazing slime expert employees who help make our business run smoothly and who love helping our slime guests. Amelia and Carly’s children, Abe, Jimmy, Carolyne and Penny, help around the business, too. Journey Through Slime Event Studio & Scoop Shoppe is a sensory-focused event studio. Slime guests can enjoy hand-dipped ice cream, shop fidget toys, make slime or even have a party in the party room.
“Amelia’s love of slime continues, and she knows God took the messiness of our transition and created a blessing. We will never forget the heart of the why of our business. Life can be really messy, and slime is really messy. The more you work with the slime, the end result is this beautiful creation. That is how life is; the more you talk through the issues and get the help you need, life can start being beautiful.
“I have learned quite a bit over the past year as a co-business owner with Carlye and my daughter. First, the dream that my daughter shared with me a year ago of opening a slime studio made me realize never to underestimate the power of a dream. Secondly, God can make the ugly in life beautiful if we allow Him to. My prayer is that when the kids and families take their slime home and play with their slime, it will be a reminder not to give up…to keep going and life can be beautiful.”