New store open ‘Up on the Hill’
For Amii Fritz, collecting cloth diapers for her baby is a unique hobby.
A mother of two, Fritz said her life was changed after her “traumatic” experience giving birth to her first child, son, River, which resulted in a Caesarian Section.
For the birth of her second child, daughter, Luna, Fritz opted to forgo another arduous hospital experience and instead have a natural birth at home.
“Everything was awesome,” she said of the second time around.
Fritz explained that her experiences in birthing emboldened her to search for natural products she could use for her two small children.
After receiving three cloth diapers at her baby shower, Fritz began collecting a full arsenal.
“I never wanted to go back,” she said.
Fritz said her life also changed when her husband was laid off just three weeks before baby Luna was born and the misfortune forced the couple to re-evaluate.
It was then that the family dedicated not to “sit on savings” and instead, invest it in something that they hope will be beneficial in the long run
Fritz opened Up on the Hill on Oct. 1, 2012.
“It’s kind of something I’ve always wanted to do,” she said
Originally intended as an online store, Fritz jumped at its German St. location when it opened up.
“It was pretty much like flying by the seat of our pants, spur of the moment, jumping in with both feet and hoping it would work,” she said.
As Fritz explained the store’s focus is the cloth diapers, though it features various natural baby goods.
With literature available at the store, Fritz explains why she thinks cloth diapers offer health, financial and environmental benefits.
She said that though she paid more up front for her collection of cloth diapers, she feels she has saved money over the long-term, and encourages all parents to try the switch to cloth.
Originally from Middletown, Maryland, Fritz has lived in Shepherdstown now for the last 10 years.
“I’ve kind of adopted West Virginia as my home state,” she said.
On top of being made of natural materials, many of the products Fritz sells at Up on the Hill are handmade by local artisans.
“I think it’s important to support you local community,” she said,
Fritz said cloth diapering itself has a community component to it as well, and said she’s formed friendships with other like-minded moms and found play dates for her kids through cloth diapering.
“The community aspect of it is real cool too.”
Up on the Hill features fair trade chocolate, soap and body goods, handmade and locally made clothes for babies and toddlers, developmentally beneficial baby toys, and baby carriers, among other things.
Fritz said she’s happy to answer any questions new customers may have about the diapering and also gives demonstrations of her products.
Up on the Hill is open Mondays, 11 to 5 p.m., Thursdays and Fridays, 11 to 6 p.m., Saturday, 10 to 7 p.m. and Sundays, 11 to 5 p.m.
The store is located just up the hill at 131 W. German St. Call 304-839-9031 for more information.