We started this journey 13 months ago when we had our initial discussion with Jenna from Nothing Bundt Cakes. It has been one of the most grueling learning experiences in my life. I often look back and wonder how we got here. Just a week ago, as I was leaving the bakery after yet another late night, I looked back at the lit sign and wonder what in the world I was doing. Well it’s too late now to turn back. Thanks to my incredibly supportive family, my marketing extraordinaire sister, some very encouraging and supportive individuals from the support office, an amazing general contractor, and now two incredible ladies that flew in to work around the clock with us we have transformed a box ridden and poorly organized space into an efficient and hopefully well run bakery ready to be opened tomorrow. I’m exhausted, scared, stressed, and excited for tomorrow.
We have made some major progress in the past two weeks and even more so over the last week. In fact, we made so much progress I️ thought for sure we would be ready to start training first thing tomorrow morning. But alas I️ have been reminded once again that nothing goes as planned. On Thursday we discovered issues with our fire alarm communication board not communicating with the fire dispatch and were shuttered until it could be resolved. While waiting for the technician to arrive we managed to set off the fire alarm and somehow that faulty communication board communicated with dispatch and so we had a visit from the fire department, but still didn’t count as pass in the test. This is also where my beautiful young nieces discovered that Uncle Aaron is a bit more free with his language when under a lot of stress. After waiting nearly two days the technician finally showed late Friday and we believe has resolved the issue. We will no more tomorrow morning when the chief comes out for our test and if all goes well we should be training by Wednesday at the latest. Let’s hope I️ didn’t just jinx the project again.
After many hiccups along the way it is refreshing (and frightening) to see so much progress every time I walk into the bakery. At first the framing went up so fast, but then I blinked and there were walls.
We now have an oven (on wheels) that is waiting for the gas and electric so it can be removed from the wheels and installed ready for me to make some toast for it’s first official test. Yes, toast, I just learned that the first test for the oven is to place bread on the top rack, the middle rack, and the bottom rack to be sure it toasts evenly on all three racks…maybe I’ll make some chocolate chip cookies after that to bring in that nice smell for any visitors before we get the cakes rolling.
And just two days ago I got to watch them build the walk in chiller and cooler. It was pretty impressive watching them put it all together panel piece by panel piece as if it was a puzzle.
Starting today, while I’m in Chicago for a regional meeting, they begin epoxying the floors. When I return to the bakery next on Monday I’m quite certain I will be blown away by even more progress which just adds to my panic. It’s a silent panic that I have become numb to the majority of the time as I continue to plow through my ever growing to do list trying to prepare for us to start training on 11/13 shooting for a soft opening of 11/17 and then a grand opening on 12/8. So much to do, so little time to do it, but so much fun to continue building something for the future of my family.
On that to do list is to capture at least 500 emails during our marketing efforts prior to the grand opening. If you are local to our area and interested in receiving email updates on our grand opening plans and special offers throughout the year, please send me your email address and I’ll have you added to our mailing list. Don’t worry, it’s not a ton of spam, oh and you get a free bundlet on your birthday month every year. Guess I buried the delicious lead there.
For any of my local friends, we are now accepting applications for five different positions within the bakery. We are looking for bakers, frosters, utility/dishwashers, guest services representatives, and crafters. All positions will be part time and hourly. Our hours of operation are M-F 9am – 6pm and Saturday 9am – 5pm. I am open to flexible shifts to help those in school and those with other jobs. Please share and help me get the word out.
So this past week the crew has completed demo, roughed in the electricity, roughed in the plumbing, cut through the main electrical line to the fire panel for the entire development, and installed our sign. I’m trying to gloss over that cut through the main line and I will hold off on blaming my contractors as the conduit was run IN the cement and not under the cement. We are currently a few days behind schedule, but the GC is feeling pretty confident that we can make up this time along the way. Most important is that the sign has gone up and it’s starting to create some buzz and awareness of what’s going in.
Up next this coming week is for the oven to be installed on Monday and to start framing in the walls. Meanwhile Rebecca and I are working on finding some potential community events to attend to help sample and spread the goodness of Nothing Bundt Cakes as we prepare for our grand opening. Based on the original construction schedule we were targeting 11/11, but to be safe I will estimate 11/18 for now. The stress level is climbing as I continue to learn something new every day, but seeing people’s reaction when they learn what we are opening I get that much more excited.
Yesterday the boys and I took a little trip to the store to hang our permits so that the crew can start demo today. After a whirlwind month of training in Dallas with Rebecca, the next stage begins today. We have an aggressive 7 week schedule for construction and I’m quite certain it is going to fly by. Stress is growing at the same pace as the excitement.