It literally never fails. . . whenever I have a fun activity in mind for GNO and I find a woman who can lead us in that type of workshop, she always has a great story to tell. I know, I know. One should never say “never” or “always”, but it’s true. Starting a new business from the ground up, takes a huge amount of courage, no matter what else you do.
This one is certainly no exception.
It may seem like opening a bakery is pretty simple. Without much thought, it’s the same as owning a kitchen, just making more cookies, right? Hardly. This is Christie Halverson, the founder of The Cookie Rack, a fabulous new cookie bakery here in Frisco. Growing up, Christie always said she wanted to own a bakery, but becoming a mother brought her so much joy that she put that dream on the back burner (for TWENTY years!!!) while she raised the three kids she had in a span of four years.
In 2016 while her oldest was a senior in high school, she started to freak out about what she would do once they were all gone.
That year, while at her book club with a couple of ladies in her neighborhood, she was talking about how sad she was that her kids were all going to be gone soon. She said, “If I’d have known how quickly they’d leave, I would have had more kids!” A “spicy grandmother” in the group called her out on that by saying, “You don’t need more kids. You need to figure out who you are and who you want to be.
Motherhood is wonderful, but it isn’t everything.”
Up until that point, most women had been sympathetic to Christie’s feelings. “No one had ever talked to me like that, it was the most amazing punch in the gut I’ve ever had. I needed someone to tell me to quit whining and do something about my feelings.” She started baking cookies out of her house and quickly filled up her entire week with orders. That’s when she got serious about opening her own bakery. Even though she still didn’t see how it could ever really work as a business, she decided to go for it.
She took the leap.
She had a dream to turn it into more than just a bakery. She wanted it to be a beautiful space, like a house, that is also a fun place to hang out. A creative place for people to learn, complete with a “cookie school” for people of all ages. And as most of us do when we’re first starting out, Christie thought the path would be relatively easy. But after all she went through just to get to opening day, she realized it was NOT going to be easy. It was more work than she could have possibly imagined, but she recalls, “The day they hung my sign, I just stood there, watching it go up, with tears streaming down my face. It was my work – literally every piece of me being put up on that building. It was my dream, coming alive.”
The Cookie Rack was an instant success.
They sold out of cookies the first day at 3pm, even though she thought she’d had way more than she needed. That kind of success requires a whole other level of courage and grit. She honestly thought she could do everything herself, but she learned quickly that she needed other people helping her out. The hardest part?
The dailiness of the grind.
The bakery, the inventory, the scheduling, the hiring . . . all of it is SO much work. That’s been the most surprising part. From the bright cheerful ambience of the each of the intentionally cozy corners, to the racks full of picture-perfect cookies; one glance at the outside makes this place seem like an effortless stroll through a land of sugar fairies. But behind the scenes, there is an endless stream of effort and hard work making all the magic happen.
Because that’s what courage looks like.
It looks like taking the leap, of course. But over the long haul, it looks like continuously leaping. It looks like taking the next step, even when you don’t know exactly where it will lead. It looks like showing up, even when you’d really rather not. Brené Brown refers to it like this:
“Just like you learn to swim by swimming. You learn courage by ‘couraging’. . . through continual courageous acts. “
On this day, when we take time to reflect on the incredible courage of Martin Luther King Jr., may we remember that’s what bravery looks like for everyone. Even though he appeared sure and steady every step of the way, I have zero doubt, that he learned courage with every single act of courage he chose. Each one a decision to push forward, with no guarantee of the outcome.
If you want to be brave with your life, you must decide to choose courage, over and over again.
It won’t be comfortable. It won’t be easy. In fact, it’s almost guaranteed to be hard.
Do it anyway.
That kind of practice is what will make you a bravehearted cookie, like Christie!
to more love,
P.S. We are (already) completely sold out of tickets to our “Bravehearted Cookie” GNO with Christie, but we are working on alternative options to make space for others to be able to participate. If you haven’t snagged your ticket and you’re interested in learning more, reach out to us right here to let us know. Otherwise, mark your calendar we hope to see you at next month’s GNO on March 7th!