I am always enthralled with beautiful baked goods, which is how I came across Fanny Lam's Instagram account Oh Sweet Day! a couple of years ago. I can never get over how pretty her cakes, pies, and cookies are. I was also super excited to learn that Fanny is a local business woman like me, from BC.
I would, and still do, check in often to view Fanny's posts and seriously drool over her pastries and cakes. I absolutely love how she decorates her 'art.' She uses straightforward ingredients (yes - Fanny has her own cookbook) and her recipes are super realistic to follow along.
Sara: How long have you been baking and have you always had the vision of growing to where you are now?
Fanny: I moved to Canada from Hong Kong in 2005. While I was spending time getting to know Vancouver, I stumbled upon local farmer's markets. I would scour the internet for recipes to cook and bake using local ingredients from the market and that's how I discovered the blogging world. Through the process of self-learning, and being inspired by brilliant bloggers out there, I started to really enjoy my time baking in the kitchen.
To be very honest, I never thought I would come to where I am now. I started my blog just as my kids came into my life a few years later. At first I just wanted to have an outlet to share my journey as a mother and a baker. It was purely an attempt to document stories and memories of food and love for my kids. As I started to bake more for family and friends, word-of-mouth and rave reviews brought more requests for my baked goods, and that also brought on my determination to start a home-based bakery.
Then everything just came with the flow; my blog became popular, my home bakery side-gig got busier (I baked over 10,000 cookies for my signature holiday cookie boxes during the holiday season), a cookbook deal came along, I started selling at farmer's markets, and then came a brick-and-mortar business at the Drive!
Sara: What are some of the important traits you live by to keep focused and organized?
Fanny: One of my vivid childhood memories is my mother juggling work and family as a single parent. As a self-taught tailor, she handmade all of my childhood outfits; they were so unique and stylish that it would make other parents jealous. Over time, she practiced the necessary handiwork and developed an impeccable sense of aesthetics, which she used to fuel her career, and she became one of the most respected female tailors in her field.
Always energetic, confident, and tenacious, she would knock down any barrier in her way to do her job, and do it better than anyone ever has. She influenced me so deeply!
I believe in hard work and positive work ethic over anything else. Yes, luck is definitely one of the reasons why I am where I am now, but I have to say I also work really hard to not let the opportunities slip away.
Sara: How do you maintain balance from your work life and spending quality time with your family?
Fanny: When you are a small business owner, you have to give 24/7 attention to your business. I'm lucky to have a supportive husband whose work schedule is flexible enough to accommodate our household needs.
Ever since this small but intimidating business started, I've always had my gang behind my back - my husband as my trusty delivery man and my two little packaging helpers. We are always together although it's work, mostly. I want my kids to witness and learn my work ethic and be proud of their mama!
One thing that we have to do every day is to have dinner together, no matter what! Be it a quick one or a long one, we will sit together sharing our day and some good food.
Sara: How did the name 'Oh Sweet Day!' come about?
Fanny: I started my blog Oh Sweet Day! to share my parenting and baking stories. My daily life was mostly about baking sweets for my babies, it was just an "oh sweet day" every day!
Sara: You've been a fan of Amaterasu. How did you learn about us and what are some of your favourite products and why?
Fanny: I believe I met you at a farmer's market and I adored your Liquid Eyeliner. I have tried more than 10 brands and I can honestly say that Amaterasu is my ultimate favourite. It's easy to apply and remove, reasonably priced, 100% smudge proof, waterproof and sweat proof (imagine working in my hot bakery on a summer day), and most importantly, LOCAL!
I'm super excited to have Fanny share her success story with us here this holiday, and I hope her story will motivate those of you who are planning to start your first big project to dedicate your all and go for it.
Now, if you have not seen her blog or IG account, you have to check out Fanny's baking or, better yet, try her delicious baking this holiday. My personal favourite, and I am darn picky with cheesecake, is her Espresso Cheesecake....yum! I also have ordered several cakes for my closest friends for their birthdays and the response is usually: "This is the best cake I have ever had!" Makes me a proud cake gifter :)
Sending you joy and love this holiday season!