It’s been a while since I made my original post. I probably should have been blogging to help document the steps we’ve taken since then to turn this little hobby of mine into a legitimate business, but I’ve really been quite busy. My day job, which I love, has been pretty busy. My family keeps me busy as well. I also try to stay busy with CrossFit, and have responsibilities with my other job at CrossFit Impavidus (which I also LOVE!). So, I’ve found that the only time I can actually bake and decorate is at night, when the kids are asleep, and the house is quiet. I have been missing out on some sleep lately, and haven’t been to the gym to exercise as often as I’d like, but I’ve been very happy watching my skills progress, and seeing the things I never thought I’d be able to do. I still have a long way to go, but I’m enjoying the practice, and I’m confident I’ll get better at this.
As for the business and what is motivating me to do this, I’m in a unique position. Perhap “fortunate” is more accurate. I have a full-time job that challenges me, and surrounds me with great people and a wonderful boss. With the exception of the commute from Ashburn to McLean (on the greenway and tollroad…), I really do like my job. I enjoy going to work every day. That means that opening a small bakery business on the side is something of a luxury, instead of a necessity. I don’t need to do this. I want to do this.
I’m therefore happy to announce Annie Banannie’s Cookies & Cakes is legit. I’ve talked to an accountant, and I’ve gone to the Loudoun County Small Business Development Council. I still have some steps I need to take in 2014, but for now I’m a sole proprietorship (proprietor?), and I’m keeping track of records and sales for tax purposes. I completed one cake decorating class, and am in the middle of a second (both on creating flowers, and using gumpaste/fondant and buttercream to do so). I’ve done my market research to ensure my pricing is competitive without undercutting my competition (which is bad for everyone). My competition, by the way, are the other boutique bakeries in the area, not grocery stores or the like, as we create edible art (basically), not your average cookie/cakes/cupcakes/cakepops. Hmm, maybe that could have been my company’s name – Not Your Average Cookie. 😉 I still like Annie Banannie’s Cookies & Cakes the best. Anyway, I worked with an awesome designer/game developer on my logo (Thanks, Jade! Design1online.com). After finalizing my logo, I ordered stickers – they are on their way! I also created a facebook page for my company, and have slowly gotten the word out. Annie Banannie’s is live! 😉 Dean is working on a website, so for now this blog will do. I’ll probably continue the blog, and have the website for official AB information, such as pricing, menu, etc. All of that, however, is available on my facebook page. (www.facebook.com/AnnieBananniesCakes)
I’m very excited for what the future holds. I’ll have to limit the number of orders I can realistically accept each week, but I look forward to fulfilling them and to continue improving my skills and tweaking my business.
Check out my facebook page to see some of the work I’ve done in the past 5 weeks. It’s been a lot of fun!
I leave you with a picture of the cake I made for Donnie’s birthday – Ninjago cake toppers made of a 50/50 fondant/gumpaste mixture. Unfortunately, I spent so much time decorating the cake (over 10 hours, honestly), that I only finished minutes before his party… and therefore, forgot to take pictures of the cake! The sides and rear of the dojo had some pretty cool windows. Next time… 😉