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UMKC Innovation Center
Solar Family Starts Business Out of Love
By Sarah Mote
February 13, 2015

Hello Happiness Card Company: A Business Born Out of Love

"Love only grows by sharing. You can only have more for yourself by giving it away to others.” ― Brian Tracy

Solars: Hello Happiness Card Company

How would you respond if two out of three of your children were diagnosed with a life threatening illness? This local Kansas City family started a business spreading love.

In January 2013, the Solar family came down with a nasty sinus infection. After a round of antibiotics, everyone got well except their son Max. Over the course of almost two years, they tried many different things to get Max well and nothing worked. Max was sick and Josh and Jenny kept searching for answers.

Around the same time, Josh became inspired by Hannah Brencher's More Love Letters.  He picked up a pen and started writing letters of encouragement to friends, family and strangers. The more he wrote, the more he realized the very words he was writing were the words he himself needed to hear.

When an entrepreneur loves an artist

As Josh wrote more cards, he realized he was struggling to find cards that weren't flowery or cheesy. As an artist, Josh decided to make his own cards. Soon, Jenny convinced him to turn his passion into a business.

In August 2014, when Max was 9 years old, his health took a turn for the worse. He was hospitalized with Enterovirus D-68 for six days and the resulting bill was huge. To cover the costs of their medical bills, they decided to sell the extra cards they had made.

The cards sold out in less than 30 minutes and, due to demand, they had to order over 1,000 more cards. Within three weeks they had raised over $5,000 to cover Max's hospital bill. People were inspired by the family's story and wanted to be a part of it. Their printer, White House Custom Color, was inspired by their story and donated the cards to the family.

Going all in

Inspired by their success, and the way their friends cards encouraged them throughout Max’s illness, they decided to move their business forward.

They changed the company name to Hello Happiness Card Company, redesigned the packaging and gave their website a huge upgrade.

Mystery solved

A week later, Max was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis, days before his 10th birthday. 

Since CF is a genetic disease, the doctors insisted they have both of their daughters tested as well. Their daughter Ava, age 8, was also diagnosed with CF.

Filling Mailboxes with Love

Finding out that two out of three kids have Cystic Fibrosis has forever changed the Solar family. They face these challenges with the determination to spread love.  As they have grown their business, there has been a steady stream of encouraging love notes.  Since November, they have received more than 100 cards in the mail.

The Hello Happiness Card Company

Hello Happiness Card Company believes handwritten letters are magical, especially when you put lots of love into them. They offer two types of card subscriptions: their You Are Loved collection and a Greeting Card line. Subscriptions are $20/month and include 5 new cards each month or the cards are available in packs of 10, 25 and 50.

A little love can go a long way, especially when you share it. The cards are created to give people the tools to encourage others and spread love and joy.

Article written and contributed by Stephanie Zamora, CEO, Assurance Security.

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