Small business Sunday!

Happy Sunday everyone, and everyone here in Rhode Island-we finally have a decent day to relax and watch football (yesterday was miserable)! Right when we were in the hospital for Ivory Elle’s arrival I had received a box of Macaroons from JOY and let me tell you, my family and I were obsessed!

Growing up, working for small businesses made me appreciate the quality of items tremendously, and it inspired me to interview Liz about their small business. When I was younger, I had a million dreams and goals. I once wanted to be a pediatric nurse, until the thought of seeing blood made me cringe. Then my mind swayed to teaching children, I’ve always loved kids. Finally, once I had a daughter of my own, I changed my mind again and considered owning my own clothing line one day, or possibly owning a boutique. This made me start thinking.

I asked Liz what inspired her to become a baker and how long she had been in the business for?

I have always loved baking and bakeries, and have always had a fascination with bakeries and sweet things. I started seriously baking about 10 years ago, and was inspired to make Macarons while waiting for my first baby to be born. I so loved the process, that I found myself making tons of them and giving them to family and friends. I worked in retail most of my adult life and thought it would be great to own a bakery, so I went for it. We have been in business for two years now.”

Just reading Liz’s response gave me such a connection. Not many people find a career in which they love and enjoy, and sometimes our children (or being pregnant with our children) give us inspiration to consider career paths in which we may never have considered before.

When I was pregnant with Avynn I had a complete change of heart towards teaching, and I ended up taking a long leave of absence from school. With my second pregnancy I realized that after all I did want to get into the medical field because such of a high demand for jobs. However, because of my queasy stomach I had to consider something in an opposite atmosphere. I finally talked to a career adviser and decided I wanted to study Medical Sonography. This career is rewarding, and I enjoyed learning all aspects.

When I asked Liz what training/experience she had prior to opening the bakery she says,

“I had no experience in the food industry, but -(As she stated before), I did have retail experience and customer service experience along with marketing. I rented commercial kitchen space where I learned how to use the appropriate equipment and asked tons of questions along the way.”

I absolutely love hearing real life inspiration, and she definitely radiates this. Naturally, with all of the good vibes going around, I had to ask about the food, haha

Liz tells me their best selling items are their Pistachio, and their Honey and Lavender Macarons. She says, “Our ice cream sandwiches have become super popular as well.”

I have to agree that Pistachio was one of my top favorites too!

And like all things, with the good always comes a challenge . I ask her what kind of unexpected challenges they may have faced when operating/owning a bakery?

She states, “I have been surprised by how tough you have to be owning a business. I created JOY with the intention of spreading Joy to people and making them happy. You can’t please everyone and I really want everyone to experience the best from JOY “

Every business that I have ever worked for always had the same intentions. “The customer is always right,” was always a factor. Pleasing the customer and making sure that you develop a great reputation was always a priority. And of course the main goal is to always keep the customer coming back, and wanting more. As a business the one factor that will always try to get in the way, is the competition. How do you set yourself apart? Many businesses set themselves apart with the smallest little “extras.” The “little things.”

Liz, how do you compete with others in your area? What makes you stand out and why do you feel you’ve been so successful with other bakeries in the area?

She explains, “We work very hard on having the best product and are constantly working to make it better. We try to have original flavors using the best ingredients and we NEVER use artificial flavoring. Because Macarons are all we do, we set high for ourselves and aim for perfection everyday, and we have standards of FUN!”

This is exactly what I was explaining-the ability to take the extra TLC to use natural sweetness and make sure to always find ways to improve are key in staying original!

This is definitely respectable and in just two years I am sure this is what their customers have noticed most (aside from the delicious recipes)! With so much success I wondered what she considered her greatest accomplishment?

“My biggest accomplishment is creating a business that my entire family can be involved in. I have three kiddos and my husband works with me, and I have the perfect work/life experience.”

This is honorable. To be able to spend time doing what you love, with who you love is a blessing. I embrace my love for writing along with fashion, in this blog, and being able to include my experiences as a mother, and share these moments with my girls is amazing. Having James photograph it is the biggest bonus.

To end our interview, I ask if she had to be a Macaron, which would she be, and why?

“I would be the Violet and Black Currant. It is sweet and tart, but adventurous and bold. It’s my favorite flavor!”

I love this. I loved the Macarons, and I gifted one box to a lucky winner through Snapchat! He received the box and loved them as well.

A huge HUGE thank you again to Liz. I diiiieeee over the cookie dough Macaron! It was my family’s favorite! Best of luck with all you do!

To all of my readers, the packaging, vibrancy, flavor, and experience with Joy Macarons was unreal. These make the perfect gift, especially with the holidays just around the corner! Make sure to check out their Instagram as well at JOY!

macarons

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