How Do You Do It All?! Really!

Hi, everyone! I have been stalking and learning for quite some time now. I haven't had to write a post thus far, since my questions are usually answered after some searching. I have read on this particular topic a few different times, but I have to ask for myself, in my own way. How do you balance it all? I have a full-time job as a legal assistant and three school-aged kids. I want so badly to make a batch of cookies every night but by the time all other areas of life are handled, at least what I can fit in and keep my sanity, I have no time. I want to get better and improve in my cookie decorating but I am struggling to just make the time.

I will find an event, baby shower was the last one, and I offer to make cookies and I find myself feeling a tad bit overwhelmed in the process when the event finally gets here and I have my job to do. 

I see people who have businesses decorating having calendars that they are available or that their schedule is full. What is the behind the scenes on this? Is it simply deciding on how many cookies they can handle and only taking that amount of orders? I have seen freezing cookies but that does not seem logical since I would have no idea of the shapes I will need in the future. I am interested in doing a calendar for myself to schedule my hobby baking. I want to improve and get myself noticed so that I may be able to sell cookies in the future. Any advice on the struggle/juggle would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

Original Post

Hi, Sarah, I don't have kids and I don't sell cookies any more, but when I had my shop (and even now, as I am juggling many, many different projects at one time), I had labor standards (i.e., knowledge of how long each task took me) and therefore how much I could reasonably book/do in any given week. Now (and then), I keep a master annual calendar with all of my bookings, commitments, and other deadlines, and I try not to book more than my labor standards say I can do. I also keep a detailed daily production schedule that is mapped out at least a month in advance, so I always know how I am tracking to plan. I live by my lists. Without them, I would not be able to get as much done. Even so, I work an insane number of hours - to be truthful. 

But, I think you could take on cookies if you have solid, uninterrupted blocks of time when your kids are at school and you are not working, and if you ruthlessly plan in some fashion similar to this. The key is first getting a grip on how long it takes you to do a typical cookie order or a certain number of cookies, and then blocking out that time so you're not getting stressed doing them.

Julia M. Usher posted:

Hi, Sarah, I don't have kids and I don't sell cookies any more, but when I had my shop (and even now, as I am juggling many, many different projects at one time), I had labor standards (i.e., knowledge of how long each task took me) and therefore how much I could reasonably book/do in any given week. Now (and then), I keep a master annual calendar with all of my bookings, commitments, and other deadlines, and I try not to book more than my labor standards say I can do. I also keep a detailed daily production schedule that is mapped out at least a month in advance, so I always know how I am tracking to plan. I live by my lists. Without them, I would not be able to get as much done. Even so, I work an insane number of hours - to be truthful. 

But, I think you could take on cookies if you have solid, uninterrupted blocks of time when your kids are at school and you are not working, and if you ruthlessly plan in some fashion similar to this. The key is first getting a grip on how long it takes you to do a typical cookie order or a certain number of cookies, and then blocking out that time so you're not getting stressed doing them.

I’ve noriced you are on the site late at night my time and I’m in california.  

Econlady posted:
Julia M. Usher posted:

Hi, Sarah, I don't have kids and I don't sell cookies any more, but when I had my shop (and even now, as I am juggling many, many different projects at one time), I had labor standards (i.e., knowledge of how long each task took me) and therefore how much I could reasonably book/do in any given week. Now (and then), I keep a master annual calendar with all of my bookings, commitments, and other deadlines, and I try not to book more than my labor standards say I can do. I also keep a detailed daily production schedule that is mapped out at least a month in advance, so I always know how I am tracking to plan. I live by my lists. Without them, I would not be able to get as much done. Even so, I work an insane number of hours - to be truthful. 

But, I think you could take on cookies if you have solid, uninterrupted blocks of time when your kids are at school and you are not working, and if you ruthlessly plan in some fashion similar to this. The key is first getting a grip on how long it takes you to do a typical cookie order or a certain number of cookies, and then blocking out that time so you're not getting stressed doing them.

I’ve noriced you are on the site late at night my time and I’m in california.  

I do work extremely late into the night, but I also leave my computer on all the time, often logged into the site. So I may be showing up as logged in, even if I'm not on the site.

Julia M. Usher posted:
Econlady posted:
Julia M. Usher posted:

Hi, Sarah, I don't have kids and I don't sell cookies any more, but when I had my shop (and even now, as I am juggling many, many different projects at one time), I had labor standards (i.e., knowledge of how long each task took me) and therefore how much I could reasonably book/do in any given week. Now (and then), I keep a master annual calendar with all of my bookings, commitments, and other deadlines, and I try not to book more than my labor standards say I can do. I also keep a detailed daily production schedule that is mapped out at least a month in advance, so I always know how I am tracking to plan. I live by my lists. Without them, I would not be able to get as much done. Even so, I work an insane number of hours - to be truthful. 

But, I think you could take on cookies if you have solid, uninterrupted blocks of time when your kids are at school and you are not working, and if you ruthlessly plan in some fashion similar to this. The key is first getting a grip on how long it takes you to do a typical cookie order or a certain number of cookies, and then blocking out that time so you're not getting stressed doing them.

I’ve noriced you are on the site late at night my time and I’m in california.  

I do work extremely late into the night, but I also leave my computer on all the time, often logged into the site. So I may be showing up as logged in, even if I'm not on the site.

You’ve also replied to me late at night.

Hi Sarah. First of all, don't think you're alone when it comes to lack of time. #teamnosleep is a pretty popular hashtag in the cookie world, and I've heard some joke that their families are on their own during the month of December as far as dinners are concerned lol.  A lot of cookiers churn out hundreds of cookies each week, but much of this has to do with gradually learning how to become very efficient due to so much repetitiveness. It's definitely more of a challenge to find time to do this when you have kids. (Mine are old enough that they don't need mom for everything but instead, much of my spare time is now spent driving them to extra-curriculars that are out of town.) If you can put a movie on for the kids, that will give you some time to decorate. Or maybe arrange for all three to have playdates (or sleepovers!) at their respective friends' houses one night. If you have your designs planned out you can spend one day making the dough, another baking and yet another decorating. It doesn't have to be all at once. Also, I think when people freeze their dough, it's probably because they already have their designs confirmed. For example, if a customer wanted champagne bottles and glasses for a new year's eve party, you could make and cut out the cookie shapes now. This way, they would be ready to bake and decorate when the time comes. But you can also freeze sheets of dough in advance to be cut out and used as needed. Remember, everyone starts out slow as beginners. A little time here and there and before you know it, you will be one of them. 

Add Reply

Likes (2)
Sweet Prodigypip
×
×
×
×