Small Town Bakery? I realize the name is a bit odd for my blog since we now have two bakeries, both located in rather large cities but we started out small and our concept and the overall feel of the bakeries remains that of a "Small Town Bakery".
The actual name of our bakeries is MeMa's Old-Fashioned Bakery. MeMa is my mother, for whom the bakery is named affectionately after. Although I have been blessed with many "Guardian Angels" that have helped me build this business literally from the ground up I would like dedicate this first blog to three people, more about them later.
Lately, especially, I have been wondering what it is that keeps me fighting for this business. It's no secret that the economic climate is rough right now and I know that I am not alone. All across this country there are hardworking business owners struggling through each and every day. I have discovered that for me the answer to why I do this comes from these three people:
First, my mother, MeMa. I remember when I was a little girl and Mom worked at a small childrens clothing shop. I would pretend to be sick from school so I could spend the day with her at the shop. We had the best time and I learned a lot about retail and the importance of customer service. Later, when I decided to open the first bakery Mom had recently retired from her job and wanted to help. We work so well together and have a great time every day. I also discovered from visiting with Mom that when she was 12 years old her family lost their farm and had to start over. She understands the struggle of losing everything and fighting your way back. Her passion for this business to succeed is empowering and a source of strength for me each day.
She is 83 years old and still enjoys coming in each morning and putting on the coffee and helping us get the fresh case filled. Inspiring, to say the least.
Second, my Dad. When Mom & Dad were young and just starting out, he was faced with an opportunity to go into business with a friend. The challenge of having a growing family and getting a business started forced him into a difficult decision; to take a secure job with the railroad or continue on with the business. He took the railroad job and retired from that industry many years later. I think that being around the bakery has helped him to fulfill his dream of seeing a fledgling business succeed. Dad is 85 years old and also enjoys coming in each morning to check if we have any local deliveries that he handles quite nicely with his small push cart. He is often heard saying "All this and retirement pay too". ( I think that means he's pretty darn happy hanging around here.)
I am so blessed to spend each morning with both of my parents and cherish each day.
Third, my daughter Cassie. The past few years have been a huge challenge for our business and our family. Cassie has stepped up to challenges that people twice her age have never faced. Her courage to continue on everyday is amazing. She runs our downtown location while sharing her quirky style with the customers and has built great customer loyalty there. Not to mention she is a fabulous and talented cake decorator also.
Although we don't always get along, like most mothers & daughters, we agree on one thing. We will fight for this bakery to succeed.
Well, that was pretty heavy. From now on I'll try to lighten up. There is a lot of fun that goes on here that I would like to share as well as baking tips and recipes.
Till next time - Oven and Out!