The Sweet Dream

Quite a number of people have asked me how I’ve seemingly suddenly become a baker, like I just woke up one morning and called myself one. Unknown to most, except my family and a few close friends, baking and I go way back. Up until a few years ago, I was more known for being the choir girl or that girl who’s always up on stage, singing. Singing was (still kind of is) my thing. When people would introduce me, it was what would oftentimes come up after saying my name. What most didn’t know was that besides on stage, I would often be found in the kitchen, testing out recipes from my mom’s food magazines when I was growing up. My mom bakes, too, and it’s most likely why I had an affinity for baking. I enjoyed watching her bake all sorts of delicious desserts and of course enjoyed eating them, too. I often baked big batches of cookies for my family to enjoy or for my friends and I to bring to our out of town trips. I’d volunteer to do a chunk of the work every time we would bake in home economics class (much to my group mates’ delight). I’ve broken glass table tops by placing fresh-out-of-the-oven sheet pans on it (I was young and didn’t know any better. Sorry, mom!). So really, it isn’t much of a surprise–to me, at least–that I have Sweet Mamita to keep me busy nowadays.

I decided to help my mom out with her (then smaller) baking business in 2012. I facilitated its name change (it used to be Sugarworks) and overall rebranding. I offered to partner with her to do the marketing, to handle social media accounts, and to do other client-facing tasks while she does most, if not all the baking. After a few months of being aggressive in promoting our brand, our market slowly grew and thankfully, is still growing. Much has changed over the years and it’s been quite a roller coaster ride. Our roles have evolved since then and now I do more baking than I would have ever imagined, develop recipes/products, and decorate fondant cakes!

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Choosing Wellness

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This was me in 2011. Obese and close to 200 lbs. Happy, but not exactly healthy.

I was overweight most of my life, but it didn’t really bother me growing up. I have always been confident with myself and I didn’t really care much about my weight or how I looked. I was happy being just the way I was, until I hit my 20s. After graduating from college and landing my first job, I felt pressured to do some serious life-planning. I was at a point in my life wherein I thought I could try many different things and engage in a lot of different activities almost worry-free because I was young(er), single, and in my prime. However, the active lifestyle I wanted for myself required a fit and healthier body to go with it and that was when I realized I had to do something about losing the extra pounds.

I didn’t suffer any medical conditions (that I knew of), but engaging in physically demanding activities was challenging. I lacked agility and endurance. I was hesitant to go into sports or other forms of exercise because I felt that my body won’t be able to keep up. Another difficulty was shopping. Shopping for clothes was frustrating having all the extra surface area to cover up. Only a number of shops would have my size. All the cute tops and dresses that I liked came in smaller sizes and the styles of those that came in bigger sizes are limited and are almost always the most unflattering ones in the bunch.

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What Do I Do?

Every time someone would ask me, “What do you do?” I would find myself looking up, letting out a deep sigh, and pausing for a few seconds to gather my thoughts before proceeding to answer the question.

I could never answer that question succinctly. I am many things. I’m a baker, a cake artist, a singer/choreographer,  a hair and makeup artist, a wellness enthusiast, and many more. So when I or the person I’m speaking with don’t have the luxury of time, I would jokingly say, “I’m a professional part timer.”

In the past five years or so, I’ve dabbled in many different things even while I had a full-time corporate job. I pursued (and still do) every single interest: I enrolled in makeup school, continued to help out with my high school choir, started a business, and many more.  I was doing great in corporate, but as time passed, I became more and more restless. Everyday I woke up knowing that it wasn’t what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. But what did I want to do? I had no idea. I was just sure I could do and be more if I weren’t at the office from 9AM-6PM everyday. I felt that all those hours spent sitting down and looking at my computer screen could be spent on so many more different things – things I were more passionate about or new things I wanted to try. I felt trapped. At that point, I found myself at a crossroads – I wanted out because being there meant missing out on opportunities that would lead me to my “calling”. Being there wasn’t being me, but the problem was, I didn’t even know what being me really meant. I just knew that I’d have to leave for me to find out.

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