I’ll preface this by saying my writing style is like a story… I don’t really know how to write any other way. I have a tendency to be sarcastic, swear, misuse punctuation and you’ll probably notice a boatload of spelling errors. This is actually amazing… because I have a BA in Journalism (No – for real I do!). Tuition dollars well spent, I’d say. So if you’re looking for the sweet sweet finesse of Hemingway… You won’t get that here. I’m also obsessed with commas, the em dash, and dot dot dot… So! Let’s start from the beginning.
I started Carr Eats out of necessity. I was a pharma rep, surrounded by crappy chain foods. Lots of catered Panera lunches, takeout pizza and Thai. The gym was the best part of my day and I needed to clean-up my nutrition or I’d be dead tired by 3:00pm. I started meal prepping for me and Mr. Eats religiously on Sundays. Full disclosure. Sometimes this was hard. Sometimes this was really really hard. BUT, I knew if I didn’t do it, my week would get all jacked-up. There wasn’t enough time to eat healthy without carving out a marathon cooking day. And so it began…
To stay motivated, I took to social media. Like a weirdo, I started to take tons of pictures of what I was eating. I was the Tupperware queen. Often pulling over onto the side of the road or lingering in the back of parking lots to eat breakfast and lunch. My food pics were gaining popularity on Instagram and friends and family started to say “we’ll give you money to cook for us!” I’d laugh and brush it off… but after several months of this, I decided “what the Hell!” I threw together a quick menu, purchased a domaine name and let Carr Eats loose!! The name itself was born out of several failed attempts at something better.
I thought – Ok… At best maybe I make 1-2 extra meals each week. How hard could that be? I mean I’m already prepping at home. But, oh baby! I was epically ill prepared for what was next. Over a hundred orders my first week. Honestly – I had a big “oh shit” moment. I mean – I didn’t have room for anything! I had food at my house, food at my parents house, food in coolers in the living room… FOOD EVERYWHERE. I was working 40+ hours at my full time job, then I was cooking and packing meals (by myself) for 24hrs on Sunday. I’d start around 5am and finish around 5am the following day; take a quick shower without any sleep, deliver my meals, then head to my real job.
Always the eternal pessimist, I thought – This must be a fluke! But week after week, the orders grew and it became very obvious, I couldn’t sustain this pace. So… I quit my pharma job. Was I crazy?! Probably – but I haven’t looked back.
This is the hardest I’ve ever worked at anything in my entire life. This company is my baby and I’m a fierce momma bear. My name is quite literally in the company name. I’m part of the brand. I personally value and understand the struggle of each and every one of my customers. From new moms to athletes, each customer is part of something more than just a sale to me. I want to be in your fridge. I want to make your life just a little easier. I am overly passionate about health and nutrition. I am disgusted by what can pass for food.
Starting a business is a beast that isn’t for everyone. 10% of my time is spent producing, the other 90% is spent staying ahead of my competitors, organizing finances/licenses/insurance, streamlining, reading, researching, being honest and true to our company mission, strategizing, menu planning, sourcing ingredients, building a brand, building a community… and now blogging! I know now, that I could never return to working for anyone but myself. I’m too high-strung and love this way too much!
So there’s the story of how my baby business entered this world! Oh… and PS I’m totally legal now… no coolers in the living room! But, the chaos of our first few steps makes for a great story and each milestone means that much more.
Waiting with baited breath?! More to come next Wednesday. Welcome to Carr Eats!