Each morning when Kevin Lively leaves to open his restaurant, Mrs. Lively’s Cajun Konnection, his sweet mother, Judy, can be found sitting comfortably at her sewing machine. And every night when he gets home, Kevin almost always finds momma sitting in the same spot — working hard for what she believes is an important cause.
What’s she working on? Homemade face masks to help in the fight against the coronavirus.
“I will tell you what she always tells me. She says, ‘What keeps me going every day in making these masks is that I can’t help but think throughout the day if this is the mask that’s going to save someone’s life,’” Kevin said of Judy, who is 71. “She’s done as many as 80 in a day, and she’s already burned through one sewing machine.”
Judy, with plenty of help from Kevin, is just one in a long line of business owners throughout the country — including right here in Denton County — who have pivoted their businesses to make and sell/donate critical face masks. The Centers for Disease Control said that surgical masks and cloth face coverings are essential to slowing the spread of the coronavirus and are recommended to be worn by everyone, whether you are sick or not. But there is also a shortage of such face coverings, and many individuals and business owners have chosen to ensure no one goes without.
While Kevin continues to run the restaurant in Lake Dallas, Judy now stays at home. She started making them when the pandemic first got serious back in March, and they are still available for purchase at the restaurant. Most of what they sell is just $10 per mask, though masks with sports team fabric are $15. The bulk of the supplies, however, continue to be donated to first responders and medical personnel on the front lines, including nurses, doctors, police, and EMTs.
Judy’s masks come in all types of colors and fabric and are available right now.
“When she first heard of the shortage, she said, ‘let me just see if I can make these,’” Kevin said. “She took one that she had worn at a doctor’s appointment and tore it apart to see how it was made. It started as just a few for some customers, but then it just exploded. People went from wanting one or two to 10 and even one order for 500. People come in, and they can’t stop talking about the masks. They thank her for all of her work, and it gets to the point where you hear the stories, and you can’t help but get emotional.”
Mrs. Lively’s Cajun Konnection is located off the lake on Hundley Dr., where Neal’s and Logan’s used to be. It is a full-tilt taste of Louisiana with an amazing variety of made-from-scratch Cajun meals that will satisfy any customer. Every dish, whether it be their gumbo, crawfish, alligator ball basket, blackened fish, or boiled shrimp, is prepared daily with fresh ingredients and cooked with only the finest signature spices. And let’s not forget about their mouth-watering desserts like pecan cobbler, buttermilk pie, and bread pudding.
If you are interested in a good meal, or want to learn more about Judy’s mask, stop in to see what they’ve got cooking.
photo courtesy of Mrs. Lively’s