2023 marks the first full year in our new kitchen. Let me tell you if was a game changer! Having a dedicated space for business allowed us to thrive but it wasn't without challenges.
We celebrated our one year kitchen anniversary, we hosted parties, classes, and baked and decorated cookies throughout the year! This year we made 34,044 cookies. We taught 458 students in person. We introduced new classes including pasta classes, cookie baking classes, donut classes and canning for food preservation. We filled the kitchen to capacity in terms of people and cookies.
Ultimately, we accomplished what we built the space for. A space to learn together, from one another, have fun and enjoy good food!
Nothing is as easy at it looks and we certainly faced some challenges. We all have those times when things just go wrong. Maybe we're tired and make mistakes, maybe we're stressed or in my case maybe your family and friends just conclude you are a witch.
My hard times started in February 2023. I fried my commercial convection oven, broke my car, burnt up our in home oven, overflowed my dishwasher and a clogged drain all within a week. What are the odds!?!
The dishwasher overflow is entirely my fault in buying the wrong detergent. A simple detergent replacement then flushing out the lines and everything is back on track but while flushing out the lines I discovered my floor drain to be clogged. Nothing a little elbow grease can't handle!
When things go wrong it can be extra frustrating but when they pile on like this it really takes a toll. I am fortunate my husband is super helpful in problem solving these but when things are electrical they can be extra hard to solve and had him stumped which required us to call in support.
My commercial oven shorted out. It over heated to the point of burning cookies and leaving my kitchen smelling pretty toasty... While under warranty I quickly discovered the extreme shortage of appliance repair people and lack of many that actually cover warranty work. It took four trips by Ken the repairman from Vancouver an hour plus away and about six months to fix the oven.... Electrical issues are very hard to trace and it came down to tracing every individual wire to finally pin pointing the issue in the motor only to discover that during the factory build a wire got pinched. A quick fix of the wire and we are now up a running again. Yes, we did bake for almost half the year in a standard home oven..... thousands of cookies....
My car started giving me battery issues. I replaced the battery not thinking much about it as it was due. The first time the battery died, I figured I left something on. The second time my husband thought perhaps we got a bad battery. After checking and double checking we ruled that out. Battery is good. Further checking into possible issues only led us empty handed. Something is simply pulling energy from the battery. Four shop visits, two new batteries, now a new repairman on the job and here it is December 31st and still no answer and no reliable car!
As a baker losing my main oven is certainly a tough hit. Losing my car the same week was rough. I was starting to lose energy myself and resorted to the reliable Papa Murphy's for dinner. While baking the pizzas my home oven went out leaving me with less than half baked dough. We worked through a self diagnosis a few calls to a family friend, parts ordered and within a month or so we basically have a new home oven.
Ultimately, 2023 proved to be a year of electrical issues and now I question the energy I might exude! I am embracing it and planning to channel my energy to great things in 2024.