we live to create a more educated, able, and healthy society
My story is long. But I look at it like a collection of ingredients, cultivated and harvested when the time was right to create the ultimate recipe.
Little Kitchen Academy didn’t start out as Little Kitchen Academy, it was a dream called “Sweet Maddies”. A beautiful, child-centered bakery. It was filled with brightly coloured creative treats displayed at child’s-eye level and sneakily made with healthy fruits and vegetables. It was named after my Mum, who’s immeasurable love for children was passed onto me. I knew the location, I smelled the aroma, I saw the children empowered to make choices on their own. I saw parents pleased because their children were eating veggies and not knowing it!
And as this dream sat on the sidelines while my husband and I raised our three daughters, different events in our lives prompted me to wonder why we had to sneak healthy choices into our kids. Why couldn’t nutritious food be desirable too?
I look to my past and start collecting.
I worked for Earls Restaurants while in school and it had a wonderful program where the Chef de Cuisine mentored and trained interested cooks to become Red Seal Chefs. I was taken by the order, routine, and efficiency of the kitchen and asked to move from front of house to the kitchen. I loved my time in the kitchen. When they decided to expand into the US market, I was chosen to lead the expansion. Training hundreds of staff to feel the passion and excitement for their job was a task I loved.
Newly married to the man that put Cold Stone Creamery on the map and fearing nothing, my husband and I decided to combine our skills and bring Cold Stone Creamery to the Caribbean as the Master Franchisee. We fell in love with the idea of beach life; constant sunshine, jasmine scented evenings and lots of ice cream. Building a business from scratch, working within a franchise system, and developing a concept in a foreign territory was one of the biggest challenges we were to face. Within a year, we successfully opened the first international Cold Stone Creamery franchise and were the first million-dollar location. We were busy, we were hustling, and we were pregnant with twins!
Selling our growing business on the islands led us back stateside and Brian joined as a partner heading up all branding and marketing for what would become the fastest growing multi-brand franchise company in North America, introducing several category leading brands to the world including, Planet Smoothie, Shane’s Rib Shack, Monkey Joe’s, and the company’s flagship brand, Moe’s Southwest Grill. I was at home with our three girls (at this time the twins were three and our youngest was one) teaching them how to read, planting vegetable gardens, dressing up, and making messes.