British Columbia

Stranger builds new lemonade stand for Kelowna sisters after theirs was taken

"I just kind of wanted to let them know, don't stop doing good things for people," said Chris Stanley, who built the girls a new lemonade stand after hearing theirs had been taken from their front yard.

'I just kind of wanted to let them know, don’t stop doing good things for people'

The Tetreau sisters in Kelowna, B.C., selling iced tea to neighbours on a sunny day, before their lemonade stand was taken from their front yard. (Chantel Tetreau)

On the Saturday before Mother's Day, Mielle Tetreau, 8, and her sister Azlynn, 5, decided to cut some lilac blooms and put them out near their front-yard lemonade stand. They carefully made a hand-drawn sign to indicate the flowers were free.

It was a sweet gesture, meant to help those still searching for a Mother's Day gift. 

But their young entrepreneurial spirits took a blow when someone misunderstood their "free" sign and walked away with the chalkboard easel it was written on, as well as some other items. 

"An honest mistake happened and they kind of accepted that," their mother, Chantel Tetreau told Radio West host Sarah Penton. 

"My husband and I just explained to [our daughters] that sometimes people do place items out at the end of their driveway or their front lawn with 'free' noted on it and people come by and pick them up."

Someone misunderstood the 'free' sign the sisters had made for the flowers, and walked away with the easel it was written on, as well as some other items. (Chantel Tetreau)

Their mother took to social media to try to find the person who took the items. 

The reaction was heartening. While no one came forward to return what was taken, strangers started offering support in various ways. 

One woman offered to replace the pool noodles if the originals weren't returned. 

And then Chris Stanley contacted her, offering to build Mielle and Azlynn a new lemonade stand. 

"I was taken aback and just said, 'That is so very generous of you,'" Tetreau said. 

Stanley, who has a background in carpentry, said he was inspired by the Tetreau sisters and their mom's Facebook post. 

"These two young girls spend their day picking flowers for other people to take to their moms, and they come back to find their stand missing," he said. 

"These girls are way too young to already be learning that no good deed goes unpunished." 

Stanley has two young children at home, and couldn't imagine how they would feel if something like this had happened to them. 

"I just kind of wanted to let them know, don't stop doing good things for people." 

Azlynn, 5, and Mielle, 8, have a brand new lemonade stand thanks to an act of kindness from a stranger. (Chantel Tetreau)

He asked Tetreau to look online to find an example of the lemonade stand they wanted. When he asked what they wanted their business name to be, the Tetreau family decided on "Sipsters."

He built them a lemonade stand, complete with a menu board. 

"The most incredible part, too, is that one of his friends saw our post and donated a bunch of materials over to him so that he could use that," Tetreau said. 

"It just goes above and beyond."

Tetreau held back tears when Stanley delivered the new stand to her daughters last weekend.

"It was pretty incredible," Tetreau said. "Just kindness and generosity and just knowing what that stand will bring for the summer. I know it's going to bring a lot of memories and some pretty incredible things."

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

now