Back Porch Soap: From Boston and New York to Jackson Hole

Here's a fun project for you — imagine living the life of your dreams in the city of your dreams. Can you picture it? I did, and seven years ago, my husband and I picked up our toddlers and moved from our hometown of Washington, DC, Charlotte, North Carolina, in search of life that was be better suited to raising our children. Most people thought we were nuts, but we are glad we followed our hearts and instincts to the place that is perfect for this season of our lives.


I love to see a woman not only reinvent herself, but also her surroundings — so the new environment matches the new self. This is what our member, Marla Bosworth, did this summer when she moved from Boston to her hometown of Jackson Hole, Wyoming (just look at the mountains!!) to open Back Porch Soap Company there. Marla took a few minutes to share why she made this life transforming move, and to encourage you to make bold moves in your life as well.

dM: You lived in Boston, were looking for retail space in New York City, and ended up in Jackson Hole? Explain.


I had an epiphany earlier this year. I said to a friend, “My perfect life would be living in Jackson Hole, Wyoming and teaching in New York City, because I love both places.” She asked me why I couldn't make it happen. At first I laughed at the concept, but then I sat with it for a few days and thought, “Exactly! Why not?” So it all started when I decided to be open to the possibility. I started looking.

dM: What are the best things about your new home?


Jackson Hole gives me the solitude that I need to recharge. The beauty of nature here is breathtaking. I love to ski, and there's nowhere in the world to ski like Jackson Hole. I grew up here, and many of my friends from high school live here. I felt a pull to go back to my roots and reconnect. New York City energizes me in a different way. I have wonderful friends there, and love what the Big Apple has to offer. I can't stand being away from either place for too long. I teach classes in New York and in my Jackson Hole Studio.

dM: What words of encouragement do you have for other women who may be considering a big move, but haven't quite taken the leap?


I think a lot of people have dreams of moving, but dismiss them because it seems so impossible. Once I became open to the possibility, after speaking with my friend, I flew out to Jackson Hole in the middle of April 2013 to look for a place to live and a retail location. Things just fell together. Within two days, I found a home and a storefront. We flew back to Boston, packed up our house and moved to Jackson Hole within four weeks.

Meet Marla

Marla is the founder and CEO of Back Porch Soap Company, and she hosts classes and workshops to help you learn to make your own beauty products and start a cosmetics business. You can connect with Marla at her Facebook page.

I love Marla's story because it shows what can happen when you do more than “think” about what's possible, and start “doing” it.


1. Have you ever picked up your entire life and moved to a new city? What's your story?

2. Would you like to move, but something's holding you back? What's keeping you from your dream?

3. If you could move to any other city in the world, where would it be and why?

Please share your thoughts and ideas below. We love hearing from you!

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About Donna Maria Coles Johnson

Donna Maria is an author, podcaster, attorney, and the founder and CEO of the Indie Business Network, providing affordable product liability insurance and mentoring. Donna Maria teaches Makers and Creative Entrepreneurs how to use technology and community to build a profitable, sustainable business.