Today is Steen’s Cookies 1 year anniversary! Crazy, right?! I never imagined that this day would come. When I first started Steen’s Cookies back on March 15th of last year, it was out of necessity. I’d recently been laid off and didn’t have a plan. So I did something that I’ve often daydreamed of. I took my severance and ran away from home! I spent an entire week alone in Hawaii admiring the ocean view from my 16th floor balcony, wearing sundresses & flip flops, and consuming copious amounts of bacon. That week in paradise allowed me to clear my head & come home with a plan. People had been asking me for a while “When are you going to start selling your cookies?” & I realized that now was the perfect time. 3 days after I returned home from Hawaii, I launched Steen’s Cookies. And 3 days after that I ended up in the emergency room with bursitis in my left shoulder because the 35 dozen cookies that were prepared in those first few days were mixed by hand. Needless to say, getting a professional mixer was at the top of my “To-Do” list for that following week!
I’ve learned SO much during this past year. Not just about operating a small business but about myself. I can’t even count how many 18+ hour days I’ve had. I’ve been in the kitchen so late many nights that I’ve watched the sunrise out my kitchen window. I’m not complaining though. I’m grateful that so many people have supported me. I’m rapidly approaching my 600th order! (Take into account that I’ve taken about 9 of the past 52 weeks off, I’d say that’s pretty impressive!) Thank you to every person who has placed an order with me during this past year. Thank you to everyone following this Tumblr. Thank you to everyone who has participated in my giveaways. Thank you for the RT’s. Thank you to my techie friends for offering suggestions & helping me get my butt in gear. Even if you’ve never actually tried a Steen’s Cookie but have thought about ordering, I appreciate you too! Thank you for your stories about how you came home from a rough day at work and seeing that box of cookies at your door made your day better. Thank you for sharing your excitement with me when you receive the confirmation email letting you know that your order has shipped! Thank you for ordering cookies for your loved ones & for sharing them with coworkers. Thank you for all of your feedback and for sharing photos (and videos!) of you enjoying your Steen’s Cookies with me. Thank you for making my temporary solution for unemployment turn into a full fledged business. On those days when I’m tired and my feet are swollen and my back hurts, YOU are what keeps me motivated. Making my customers happy is one of the most satisfying feelings I’ve ever felt. Knowing that people believe in you will motivate you when you’ve only had 9 hours of sleep in 2 days.
I’m not sure what the future holds for Steen’s Cookies. As long as my customers continue to have a sweet tooth, I will continue to bake. As I mentioned, I had no idea that I’d still be doing this 1 year later. But one thing I am certain of is that you all have contributed to making this one of the most special experiences I’ve ever had in my life. I truly appreciate you all so much from the bottom of my heart. Thank you for your continued support.