Earlham woman turns family Christmas tradition into cafe


Beans and Donuts owner Nina Lorimor-Easley said she hopes her coffee will spread joy to anyone who stops by.

EARLHAM, Iowa – For Christmas this year, an Earlham family wants to welcome the whole town to theirs. But, they will continue every day of the year.

Beans and Donuts owner Nina Lorimor-Easley said she hopes her coffee will spread joy to anyone who stops by.

“It’s been going really great since we opened,” she said.

As restaurants closed left and right over the past year, Lorimor-Easley took a chance and opened the doors to “Beans and Donuts” at the Bricker-Price Block.

“My job was changing and I was going to have to change direction,” she said.

So she focused on coffee and donuts, even involving her 16-year-old son, Zaiden.

“Donuts just aren’t in Iowa, you know?” So it’s been really exciting, ”Zaiden said.

“My son is my favorite. He’s my right arm. He’s the donut master, says Nina.

It’s a pretty natural transition for Zaiden after growing up making donuts every Christmas, a family tradition that her father, Jeff Easley, began.

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“Donuts have always been a really exciting thing around Christmas time and have always spread a lot of joy around the family,” Zaiden said.

“On Christmas Day we were delivering donuts to our friends and family and everyone always enjoyed them, and we always had the option to open a cafe, make donuts, make coffee and that would be fair. fun, ”Nina said.

In her first year, it’s been fun for Nina, but as her first Christmas approaches, the store won’t have the person who started the tradition.

Nina’s family lost Jeff last year.

“It will be hard, but good. We miss him, “said Nina.” It would mean the world. I would give anything to get it back. It would be fun. It would be great to have him here and be able to see that. Making the donuts and all the tradition of it all. meant so much to him, if he could see that, if he could be here, that would be amazing.

From cafe walls to menus, Jeff is not far from it all. His presence is still part of the tradition that his family continues.

“It’s nice to be able to see the happiness of not leaving with him,” Zaiden said.

Nina and her family hope that Jeff’s Christmas spirit and his ability to spread happiness extends outside their home and to the doors of Beans and Donuts and all the way to Earlham.

“I love to share the donuts and people come in and earn their own stories,” Nina said.

Beans and Donuts can be found on Chestnut Street in the heart of downtown in the Bricker-Price Block.

The nonprofit that oversees the building said Beans and Donuts has been very successful since opening and hopes people will continue to support this local family who run the cafe.

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