“If you can’t figure out your purpose, figure out your passion. For your passion will lead you right into your purpose.”
The words of pastor and author Bishop T.D. Jakes somewhat encapsulate the journey of local businesswoman Tammie Weisgram.
Prior to moving to Lincoln City about three years ago, Weisgram lived in the Columbia River Gorge area in a small town called Corbett. She graduated from Corbett high school in 2000 as the Valedictorian and went to college before getting her real estate license at 21.
She later gave birth to her son Dylan and continued to work her office job on a daily basis. As a former all-star athlete in high school, Weisgram found the adjustment quite difficult and it began to take a toll on her body.
“I don't really know what happened to me, but I got really, really lost we’ll just say that,” Weisgram said. “I ended up at about 300 pounds.”
As is the case with most people battling weight issues, Weisgram said she came to a realization one afternoon that something needed to change.
“I had my son by that point and I kind of just had this moment, this very sad moment sitting there in this overstuffed recliner chair and like I took up every inch of it and I was like ‘what has happened to me,’” Weisgram said. “I literally looked at my son on the ground and thought, ‘I should be on the ground playing with him.’ So that very moment, I went and grabbed my tennis shoes, I threw him in the stroller and we started walking.”
Weisgram said it started off slow, walking twice a day, then it led to biking, then jogging and then she began eating better and after a while she started seeing major results.
“I lost over 50 percent of my body weight in 12 months, I went from 300 to 129,” Weisgram said. “That was all for my son, I wanted him to see a healthy normal lifestyle. I wanted him to grow up learning how to eat right and be active.”
Weisgram then became certified as a personal trainer and Zumba instructor. Not only was she looking to improve her body physically, but also she was looking to improve mentally as well.
“For me, I wasn’t very good at sharing my emotions and things that were hurting or bothering me and by doing so I was stuffing with like a lot of food and just things to comfort me instead of just getting out my problems,” Weisgram said.
At one point in time, Weisgram said she would begin journal writing since she didn't feel comfortable sharing some of her personal feelings with other people. The therapeutic writing paid dividends and she began to improve her psyche.
However, there was still something missing for Weisgram, the passion for her career. And to find that, she decided to relocate.
With the decision to leave her small town near the Gorge, Weisgram was then tasked with finding a new home. After some searching, the choice became obvious. She was going to move to Lincoln City.
“My father and grandparents lived down here and my dad actually graduated from Taft High School, so we decided to come back to what feels like kind of a second home,” Weisgram said.
With her love for small towns and the outdoors, Lincoln City seemed like the perfect fit for Tammie and Dylan. They enjoy riding quads, fishing, crabbing, kayaking and hiking, making the Oregon Coast an ideal location for their outdoorsy lifestyle.
“It's beautiful, obviously and we’re super outdoorsy,” Weisgram said. “I just feel good raising my son in a place where when we go to the store, we know people and it's always a good interaction.”
Weisgram continued her career in fitness by managing Snap Fitness in Lincoln City, but knew that she had not quite realized her calling.
Finding the passion
Growing up, Weisgram admired her father and grandfather for their work as contractors. But Weisgram’s father encouraged her to pursue other careers first.
“He kind of took me by the arm one day when I was really young, and said, ‘You are getting an education, you are not going to use your body to work like we do,’” Weisgram said. “But when I came here I just kind of put two and two together that contracting was what I was meant to be doing.”
Weisgram then began her very own company called Riptide Remodeling with partner Stuart McWiliams.
“I went and did the construction contractors board tests and did all the studying,” Weisgram said. “So I'm the responsible managing individual of the company and my partner Stuart, he does a lot more of the hands on type of things in the field, I do work in the field with him, but he's definitely the muscle.”
The new business offers a little bit of everything. From kitchen renovations, bathroom facelifts, deck remodeling, tile installation and much more. With a goal set at $150,000 for their inaugural year of business, Weisgram said Riptide Remodeling has already nearing $450,000 and it hasn’t even been a full calendar year.
Weisgram has focused her business to be primarily in the Lincoln City area since there is such a need here in town.
“Everybody down here on the coast seems to need it because the weather just beats everybody's houses,” Weisgram said. “Although we have a lot of really great new home building companies, not a lot of people want to touch dry rot and things like that so every time a customer calls me and I answer the phone, they thank me profusely just for answering the phone and being willing to help.”
Riptide Remodeling are currently in the process of signing contracts for a big project at the Best Western Hotel in Lincoln City and Weisgram said they are looking forward to that project. But the success they have found has largely come from their positive reviews thus far.
“We’ve done a lot of work in the Lincoln Beach area and there's a couple of homeowner associated kind of places there and whenever we get a job in one of those places, everyone sees our work and they love it,” Weisgram said. “Before you know it, word travels around and we end up doing the whole neighborhood.”
For more information about Riptide Remodeling call 503-330-1383 or visit riptideremodeling.com.