Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Full of Surprises!

Today I followed in the footsteps of my father, brother, and grandfather. A proud moment indeed.

Growing up my dad owned his own painting and wallpapering company. He also did a little remodeling, dry wall, siding, and if he really liked you, maybe some bathroom fixtures. Never electrical - the stuff's dangerous, leave it for the pro's.

Anywho, Jim's Painting and Paperhangning was my family's basket of bounty. Being an entrepreneur has its ups and downs, but I always respected my dad for doing his own thing and being really good at it. There are many houses in Minot where he can list off every color underneath the present shade because HE'S been the one to do it for thirty some-odd years. Now my folks are still being their own boss as owners and innkeepers of the famed Dakotah Rose Bed and Breakfast.

My brother, immediately after graduating from college, started his own furniture business and was also very successful. My grandfather, after leaving the service, opened a couple of laundromats and a car wash and had rental properties. On my mom's side there's a whole gang of farmers and ranchers, all doing their own thing. I guess we have a flair for independence.

Family history aside, something happened today that has never happened to me before. Something happened that opened an entirely new vista of opportunity before me.

k, I'll cut the drama.

I sold bread! Although most are unaware, I love to bake. In particular, I love to bake bread! I can thank my mom for giving me my start and I can even thank 4-H for giving me a little confidence in the quality of it. Most of all, though, I just love every part of making bread. It's an art, a stress reliever, and beautiful process. There are endless options. Countless ways to vary and change and make a recipe your own. I just think it's great.

While living in the dorm in college my greatest woe was not having an oven. Now that I'm in an apartment, however, I get to do all the baking I have time for. So now I'm turning out bread as often as I can and experimenting with recipes and ideas. It's awesome.

As if this weren't enough, though, my wife has taken the liberty to brag up my bread at work. Then she took some with her and we got the line I've heard before - "oh wow, you could sell that". But it was a variation of the line. This time it was, "Can I buy some?" This is entirely new territory.

So, I went to the store and got more supplies and this morning set out to make "for sale" quality Red Pepper and Roasted Garlic Cheese bread. And it was wonderful. They were beautiful little ten-inch oblong loaves with shredded colbyjack and roasted garlic cheese settled and melted into the scoring along the top of each loaf. What a delight!

So now (although I technically am not a business yet or have a license or a store or anything legit), I feel as though I am a little closer to being an entrepreneur too.

Only time will tell if this will actually turn into a really business future, but today I was paid for my skillful little creations and that felt pretty cool.

P.S. If it's not too early, I also have a name for my business. My store is tentatively dubbed, "The Bearded Baker".