A Place of One's Own

A Place of One's Own

This post is one in a multi-part series of blog posts about my journey of opening up a local cafe. It has been a dream of mine for quite some time and I am enjoying each step as I go along exploring, learning and putting out into the world my thoughts on what I want this cafe to be about. Not just about the food, it's about the people and it always has been that way for me. To me the most joyful moment is when you realize that you have created food that people enjoy. I want to translate that joy into a  place that has ownership opportunities for my team. 

I want to explore this idea because I believe that it's important for all employees to have a real sense of ownership and pride in what they do. They have a stake in the cafe. People are important and I believe in treating everyone as owners. 

Whenever I go to employee owned stores I see the difference in the people. Often they are more helpful because it's their store too and they want you to feel welcome in their place. I really love that. 

I'd love to know your thoughts on this model and how it may be implemented for all team members. 

Please leave a comment below or email me at: info@thecheerychef.com

With lots of care,


A Positive Place

A positive place

This is the 4th blog in a series about building my dream cafe. I am part way through this journey as I envision, plan and dream as well as meet with others about this dream place. In my heart I trust this vision. I will do the work necessary to make it come true, but I trust the universe to take care of some of the details. 

As I took a "dream day" to write down all of my thoughts about the cafe that had been rattling around in my head for a long time, I thought about not only the look of the cafe but the environment and the messages that surround the clients and the team members working there. Out and about sometimes I see people that look sad, dejected or negative. I feel like they are under so much stress. What if there were somewhere they could go to nourish their souls, to have a smile on their face for at least part of the day? That is what I want to build. I want to see more smiles and positivity! 

Here is how I envision the cafe looking and the exact messages that we will incorporate into the design to make it a positive environment: 

Look of the cafe: 

Warm, inviting cottage space. This cafe feels like a home away from home. The look mixes modern lines with traditional flourishes like lace tablecloths. Modern Swedish + Grandma's House. 

Furniture: Modern wood tables and chairs adorned with antique linens. Some large chairs and sofas to relax in, especially around the bakery area. 

Colors: Natural light wood tones such as maple and Oregon ash+ hot pink and gold accents. 

Wall Art: Modern prints in ornate gold painted frames. Art is graphic, bold, positive message: 

"Keep Postive" 

"Smile: You are Amazing"

"Miracles Are Happening"

"We are all Connected"

What does a positive & inviting space look like to you? 

I'd love to hear from you! 

With lots of care,


Inclusion: Everyone is on our team!

Inclusion: everyone is on our team!

This post is the second in a series of posts I will share with you all about my journey to create an amazing community cafe! 

To me, inclusion is very important. It is just like the cranberry sauce pictured above. Without including all of the elements it's not the same. If I left out the fresh ginger it wouldn't have the same taste. It's the same with building a team for a cafe, a business  or a sports team. Without everyone's special abilities you don't have a special sauce. 

I believe that everyone has very unique abilities that nobody else has. That is why it is so important to me to start thinking about building my team with everyone in the community in mind. That means people of diverse backgrounds and people who have physical or mental disabilities can add a very unique and valuable element to the cafe that I envision. 

I'd love to share with you what I wrote about this during a day-long brainstorming session this week: 

Having a diverse/inclusive team is very important to me! 

Inclusion means believing that everyone has something unique and special to offer. 

Here is what I want: 

  • I want to provide benefits to all employees.
  • I want to include people with diverse backgrounds and diverse abilities on our team. 
  • I want to have a mentor program, matching mentor + employee (one on one coaching). 
  • I want to have monthly workshops for employees to improve their skills and learn more. 
  • I want to make sure that there is a positive, encouraging environment for the employees as well as the customers. 
  • I want to make sure that there is a profit-sharing opportunity for all employees.

I would love to hear from you on what you think of these items on my team wish list. I have a vision that this will work very well & am very excited about it! 

Thank you so much for sharing in my journey with me! 

Building a Dream

Building a Dream: My Cafe

I apologize for the delay in this new blog post. I usually try to post once a week, but now with many more meal service clients I don't always have the time to work in the kitchen to come up with brand new recipes. I am so very grateful for my abundance though! I am so thrilled to be so very busy cooking and preparing meals for clients. It brings me great joy! 

I wanted to share with you this very special project that I am working on. It is a long term project, a dream of mine that is taking shape, day by day. Dreams come in visions, baby steps, emails, phone calls, vision boards, trial and error, connections, conversations, meditations & more. 

Today I took the day to outline my dream in great detail and also make a vision board about it. 

Here are a few details that are important to my vision. I outlined many thing in my notebook today, but these points are the most powerful that I want to share with you. My "why" for this cafe is not about the food, baked goods or coffee, it is about community. 

Community & Inclusion: 

When I thought about what community and inclusion, these things came to mind: 

What community means to me is that we truly listen to each other without judgement to find common ground. We are all connected on Earth in ways that are amazing to imagine. All of the choices that we make are important and make a difference. I believe that if we can truly get to know those around us we can see that we ALL have some things in common as human beings: 

-to be seen

-to be heard

-to matter

-to find happiness

-to know our value

-to understand our special gifts

-to leave a legacy

-to experience joy

-to give back

These are things that we all feel in our lives. What does community and inclusion mean to you? I'll be writing several posts on this topic and hopefully sprinkle in some recipes as well. 

I wish you joy today,