Editor’s Note: Don’t miss One Week Boutique‘s fall/winter sale, which is open to the general public on Sept. 24-25. If you’re not familiar, OWB is a great place to find what you need for your growing family – children’s clothes up to size 14, shoes, toys, baby gear, maternity clothing, and so much more. Head over to One Week Boutique to find some of the best deals in Champaign-Urbana on Saturday and Sunday at the Leonhard Recreation Center in Champaign. OWB is a longtime sponsor, collaborator and friend of chambanamoms.com.
September is Grandparents Month, and today we’re celebrating by getting to know Kay and Richard McGuire of Urbana. The McGuires are the parents of One Week Boutique owner Donna Pepper, who created Champaign-Urbana’s largest consignment event 13 years ago. Pepper, an Urbana native who now lives in Michigan, says her parents’ support and participation have been critical to the continued success of One Week Boutique.
Originally a teacher, Champaign native Kay McGuire opened her own private counseling practice after receiving her master’s in social work from the University of Illinois. The practice grew into a center that offered a multitude of healthy living services including yoga and massage. She transitioned into focusing on leading seminars and training sessions in the area of communication throughout the community. McGuire concluded her professional career with a 15-year stint doing communications research for the US Army Corps of Engineers in Champaign – retiring at age 72! Richard McGuire spent most of his career serving in ministry, spending 25 years as a pastor in various area Methodist congregations, most prominently as senior minister of the First United Methodist Church of Urbana. He also worked a few years as CEO of the Urbana Chamber of Commerce. In addition to their professional careers, both McGuires have been active in Champaign-Urbana community organizations and service, too numerous to list. They proudly call themselves grandparents to Taybor, a recent graduate of Michigan State University, and Sloane, a high school sophomore.
See why we think Richard and Kay McGuire are Chambana Grandparents to Know.
Q: How did your community involvement and passion drive you to start OWB as a family?
Richard: We saw that younger families were having increasing difficulty in affording the escalating costs of raising a family. Through OWB we wanted to significantly lessen that stressor for young families.
Kay: Our daughter has been the guiding light for our involvement with OWB. She came home from Oklahoma one day and said “we need to start a children’s consignment sale in C-U!” They need one, families can save money, make money and we can have them donate what doesn’t sell to organizations who can get them to people who need the items – EVERYBODY WINS!” So, the rest is history.
Q: What is your favorite part of OWB Sale Week?
Kay: My favorite part of the sale is seeing our volunteers who come back year after year, visiting and helping with the customers, and most importantly watching our daughter relate to everyone with a smile and a hug, as people wait to see and talk with her. I am SOOOO proud of her, she is the BOSS for this and she does a great job, is so creative, organized, caring and tireless!
Richard: When daughter Donna comes to town to manage the sale, I have been going to her home (now in Michigan) and being the so-called “baby sitter” for our grandkids, Taybor and Sloane. However, Taybor, 21, is now a college graduate (Michigan State) and Sloane, 15, is a high school sophomore. So now I have transitioned into being simply Sloane’s chauffeur, dinner and TV companion, and errand boy.
Q: When you’re not at OWB, where can we find you around C-U?
Richard: Around noontime almost every Thursday, I can be found at the C-U Kiwanis meeting in the Hawthorne Conference Center and once a month I attend the club’s board meeting as the club’s President-elect. Also since I do a historical portrayal of Judge Joseph Cunningham, who along with his wife Mary, gifted their estate on Cunningham Avenue in Urbana to become what we all know locally as Cunningham Children’s Home, I can be found often doing my portrayal of the judge at various local community clubs and United Methodist Church groups throughout central Illinois.
Kay: Our house, Steak ‘n Shake, West Side Park, Hessel Park, being with our friends – any Illini sports venue during a game, match, etc. I volunteer at Salt & Light ministries one morning a week as receptionist, I am on the board and OWB donates items donated by our consigners to OWB. I also serve on a committee at Cunningham Children’s Home.
Q: What do you love about being grandparents?
Kay: Being a grandparent is WONDERFUL! Unconditional love – both ways! Watching grandchildren grow into young pre-adults. Seeing their faces light up when they come to your house or we go to theirs! Having that special bond of love we feel between us – it’s special! We are thankful their parents have encouraged the relationship between us and our grandchildren.
Richard: I absolutely love seeing Taybor and Sloane develop into confident, caring persons who will make life better and more enjoyable for their families and all those they come in contact with no matter what they choose to do with their lives.
Q: What is challenging about the role?
Kay: Living 5 1/2 hours apart. We would love to be able to have them just run into our house more often, attending their activities more than we can.
Richard: The challenge is to keep your mouth shut and not give in to the natural tendency to want to tell you child and her husband how they ought to be doing their parenting — though if you are confident in how you raised your own child, you can step back and be a quiet observer of her and her husband’s parenting.
Q: Tell us something most people might not know about you.
Kay: I am afraid of heights! No St. Louis Arch for me, no Pike’s Peak, no standing by the window of a 30-story building! Don’t know why, I just am!
Dick: I love to sing, but I have a far-less-than-velvet voice. My singing voice is so bad my wife Kay even asks me not to sing in the shower. Once during a worship service I was leading many years ago as the pastor of the United Methodist Church in Paxton, on her way out after the morning worship service, an older lady asked me if I would please not stand so close to the microphone when we’re singing the hymns.
Q: You are a family that gives back – and gives back together. Do you have any advice for young families who want to make community and giving back a priority?
Kay: This is your community. This is where you are raising your children – work to make it the best place it can be, BUT don’t forget to take time to BE with/together as a family.
Richard: Yes, if you are not in the habit, start now to get in the habit of doing good things for others and teaching and modeling such behavior for your kids, starting with your own immediate family and going on out to others — family, friends, acquaintances, co-workers, whoever you come in contact with. Sure, life is tough and people let us down, but we can choose our attitude about how we live our lives. The reason I entered the Christian ministry is not because I heard a voice from heaven, but because I became intellectually convinced that the way to live our lives most fully was in the demonstration of Jesus’ love and caring for people. I like this quote I read years ago and have tried to live my and our family life by it: “If the world is bad, I am determined it will be so in spite of me.”
Thanks to the McGuire-Pepper family and One Week Boutique! Don’t forget – One Week Boutique’s public shopping event takes place on Sept. 24 and 25 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.