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Behind The Dough: Ashley's Story



black woman hugging son, eating a cookie
Ashley's Famous Cookies 1st Photoshoot

"I don't want any other cookie. I only want Ashley's Famous Cookies."


That's what my mom kept saying anytime I brought store bought cookies in the house. I was so annoyed. "I made chocolate chip cookies from scratch ONE time." I thought to myself. "And now you won't eat any other cookies?"


I wasn't buying it. I continued to purchase other cookies when I didn't feel like baking and my mother would never eat them. A year and a half went by and what started out as me trying to satisfy my post-partum cookie cravings turned into a family favorite. Anytime someone wanted something sweet, my family would request I make my chocolate chip cookies.


After biting a warm cookie, my mother would always say, "You need to sell these Ashley. They are so good." I would tell her thank you but my mom has always been my number one supporter so I know that she is always going to hype me up. I was working at a daycare at the time and I was making minimum wage. My son was about 18 months old and I had just started back taking college courses online. I had no idea of the direction my life was headed and it felt like everyone I knew was figuring it out except me. All of my friends were graduating college, landing their dream jobs, or were just simply enjoying the freedom of being in their early 20s. Leaving a big university in the middle of my sophmore year was one thing, but having a baby at 21 really made me feel isolated. I really enjoyed being a mom but being alone sucked.


After almost two years of hearing my mother's voice in my ear, I finally said "Fine, I'll sell the cookies." I had nothing to lose. I had recently quit my job at the daycare for a photography gig on the weekends that paid more than my entire week at the daycare. I had more free time than ever and absolutely nothing going on.


The first thing I did was create a few more flavors to go along my chocolate chip cookies. "If I'm going to sell cookies, I've got to have a variety." I thought to myself. After making a smores and oatmeal cookie, I packed the cookies in a tubaware container and took them to my little brother's highschool basketball game. I let the basketball moms and the players try the cookies and they told me they were delicious. This gave me the confidence to make a cookie platter and take a few pictures. I remember posting the pictures of the cookies on my facebook page letting my friends and family members know that I had cookies for sale. That was it. That's how it all started.


At first I was baking one order a week and then it turned into two and three! It made me feel so good to see how happy people were after their first bite. Next thing you know I had atleast one order a day! It was crazy how quickly word spread about my cookies and the amount of support I recieved from family, friends, and people in my community.


When I first started my business, I didn't know anything. Heck, I don't even think I realized I was starting a business. I was winging the entire thing. I remember wrapping the cookies on a paper plate with saran wrap and meeting my old coworker in a parking lot to deliver cookies to her. I didn't have everything figured out but I knew the cookies were good and I had a name.


Ashley's Famous Cookies.

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