Tonya and Ebony moved with their families to Mérida, Mexico, to uncover their family’s history and heal after the passing of their mother, Patsy. The result: a fresh, new business, fittingly called Patsy’s Daughters Moved Abroad.
It was Patsy who inspired Tonya and Ebony to seek a new life in another country. The first in their family to travel internationally, in 2008, Patsy took her daughters to Jamaica. The trip was the catalyst for some big changes in their lives.
Tonya Cummings and Her Daughter Nicole
Tonya, a business administrator, was tired of the systemic cycle of living. She and her husband of 13 years decided to move and work remotely while homeschooling their daughter. Shortly after their move, Tonya’s husband returned to the States, ending their 25-year relationship, but Tonya and her daughter were not defeated.
The mother-daughter duo revived their popular business, Katie’s Cakes, based originally in Virginia and now exclusively in Mérida. Grandma Katie’s Old-Fashioned Pound Cakes has been featured in magazines and video media. It gained even more popularity after Fox News did an exclusive interview in their home, with then-9-year-old Nicole grabbing the spotlight.
The spirit of Yucatán has inspired Tonya to express more of her creative side by launching her 7-Day Customer Experience Business Retreat in June 2023.
This event is to assist affluent entrepreneurs in growing their clientele by providing them the tools to create stronger relationships with customers, especially female customers, who make up 80% of spenders globally.
This retreat creates a trusting connection between businesses and customers that have been proven to work over the years. You can also find Tonya on her new YouTube channel, Moved Abroad and Got Divorced at 50. Her goal is to share her journey and help others accomplish their dreams after 50.
Her daughter Nicole was the creator of Katies’s Cakes and now writes poetry, and is the co-creator of The World Schooling with Nicole. Since moving abroad, she has developed a passion for writing poetry and creating short stories. Nicole’s first poetry book is called “My Thoughts On Paper — Inside the Mind of a Kid Moving Abroad.” It contains 14 poems to inspire readers to dream big. This kid entrepreneur has been featured in over 10 print and video media for Katie’s Cakes since she was 8 years old.
Ebony and Her Daughter Patsy
Ebony spearheaded the move when she did a solo trip to Mérida the prior year. Her motivation was to seek answers about her daughter Patsy’s genetic disorder.
Doctors weren’t able to explain why Patsy was non-verbal and experiencing limited mobility without a proper diagnosis or information. She was often experiencing seizures, leaving Ebony feeling helpless.
But Patsy’s last seizure was in January 2022, one month before their move to Mérida. Since their move, Patsy’s seizures have ceased; she’s walking with little to no help, sleeping through the night, and enjoying a variety of new fruits and vegetables. Her progress has excelled in Mérida without physical therapy with the guidance of her mother. Together they are learning Spanish sign language, taking trips to the beach, and dancing to Mexican music.
Ebony had found new strength and healing since helping her daughter thrive, which had opened the door to create her business Elegant Simple Living Relocation. As an international relocation specialist, Ebony assists families and individuals with transitioning to Mérida by completing a checklist and providing helpful information. After they arrive, she continues to offer support until they are able to get around on their own.
Another one of Ebony’s passions is public relations, where she connects Mérida’s local small businesses with customers by providing them with personally designed websites and logos. Currently, Ebony’s most prominent client is Yucatán Massage & Body Therapy by Keyla, located near Super Aki in Progreso. (Visit https://yucatanmassage.mailchimpsites.com)
Sophia first met Tonya and Ebony as a client of Elegant Simple Living Relocation. After arriving in Mérida, Sophia and Ebony instantly connected while discussing single parenting and what life was like in Virginia. Although Sophia had recently launched her fruits and vegetables juicing business in Hawai’i called Joyful Juices, her true passion is Tarot reading. With her collection of cards and charms, she did a reading for Patsy’s daughters that was undeniably accurate and exposed secrets that the sisters hadn’t even shared with each other. Although the sisters were healing from trauma due to romantic relationships, this reading opened the door to healing within the family as well. After this experience, there was no denying that the women could help more people if they joined all their talents together in this spiritual environment of Yucatán, Mexico.
S.E.T. Your Intentions 7-Day Retreat Mérida, Mexico
Patsy’s Daughters Moved Abroad and Sophia’s Joy Tarot and Charm Reading collaborated to create the S.E.T. Your Intentions 7-Day Retreat. Retreats are between March and November, with a maximum of two people per booking. It offers those who are ready to improve their lives with a supportive team to help them along the way, says Ebony.
“This retreat offers the perfect opportunity for you to come face-to-face with your truth, accept yourself, start to heal, and set your intentions to live happier, all while exploring Maya culture,” Ebony says.
Facebook: @patsysdaughtersmovedabroad and @sophiasjoyful
Instagram: @patsysdaughtersmovedabroad and @sophiasjoy_tarot
Read more about Ebony and Tonya, who are featured in Yucatán Magazine Issue 8, The Women’s Issue.