Interview with Ann Hellman: My Aunt who Will Jump In to Help with Anything

Throughout my re-launch of The Dessert Place, my extended family has been so supportive (I guess that's what family is for, right?). While I will feature many more family members on the blog over time, I'm kicking things off with my Aunt Ann, one of my dad's older sisters from Charleston, SC... 

The entrepreneurial journey is fun and rewarding, but also terrifying and filled with many ups and downs. On days when I'm wondering why I quit my steady "9-5" job, it's family members like Ann that keep me going with encouragement. Ann is often the first person to share any and all Dessert Place social media posts (her friends might think she actually runs The Dessert Place Facebook page at this point), and has genuinely been so excited about and supportive of this new career path that I've embarked on. She loves to order brownies for family occasions, and continues to tell me just how proud she is of the work I'm doing. Whether she knows it or not, it keeps me motivated.

After Ann and her husband, Max, spent many weeks on end in the car on a cross-country road trip this past summer, they made one last stop in Atlanta to visit before making their way back to SC. Rather than relaxing and unwinding when they arrived at the end of their long trip, Ann jumped right in to help me prep a huge batch of brownies so that they were ready for shipping (literally saving me hours of work). She wouldn't have had it any other way, and continued to ask what else she could do to help. As I learned while we were chatting and cutting brownies together, history sure does have a way of repeating on below to find out how Ann also helped my mom during her very first visit to The Dessert Place in the 80s!


Q: Do you remember the first time you met my mom?

A: My 1st recollection of meeting your mother is when they came over to our house and I was sick and laid up in bed...  I thought it was pretty great of her to be willing to come and visit when I couldn’t do much.   We may have met before, but that memory just sticks in my mind.  
Q: When did you first experience The Dessert Place? What were your thoughts at the time?
A: Our 1st experience with the Dessert Place was at the mercy of Stuart and Sheryl and their willingness to come to Charleston with boxes of goodies.  We didn’t travel much back then, so we weren’t able to get the full effect of seeing and tasting all of great desserts that The Dessert Place had to offer.  We loved all of the goodies that were brought.  Of course, your grandmother was very protective of the Chocolate cake, so we didn’t always get to have some of that.
Q: I've heard that during one of your visits to Atlanta and to The Dessert Place, my mom put you to work behind the scenes...can you share the story?  
A: Max and I finally got a chance to take a vacation so we came to Atlanta to see Sheryl and Stuart  and visit the Dessert Place.  On Saturday night as we stood behind the counter watching all of the people stand in line waiting to get into The Dessert Place, the dishwasher broke.  Max and I being family, did what only family would do, we stood and washed dishes and trays so that they could serve the throngs the great desserts they stood in line to get.  It was a very momentous occasion and we were so happy that we could be there to help them out. 
Q: What was your very favorite item from The Dessert Place back in the day?
A: Max’s was Apple Pie.  Mine were CCB’s, Puffins, and Those Cookies.  Of curse the Carrot Cake was right up there too.  Bottom line, we liked just about everything.
Q: I vaguely recall my mother bringing bags of desserts with us during every visit to Charleston when I was a kid. What did she usually bring?
A: Chocolate Cake for Mama, and all of the things mentioned above.  We also got to try some of the new things that she was making, such as different flavored cheese cakes.
Q: What was your reaction when I first told you I was planning to quit my corporate job to revive The Dessert Place?
A: I was thrilled for you, and of course that meant that we could get the Cream Cheese Brownies again.  You are so great with anything that you do, I knew that The Dessert Place would be a wonderful success.  I was also happy that you would be in Atlanta and that we would be able to see you more often than when you were in NY.
Q: What have you enjoyed most about The Dessert Place being back in action again?
A: Besides the Cream Cheese Brownies, I have enjoyed seeing and sharing your wonderful posts on Facebook.  Seeing you use all of the marketing techniques that you learned and putting them to use in your own company makes me a very proud Aunt. 
Q: What's your favorite way to eat a Cream Cheese Brownie?
A:  FROZEN.  I can take smaller bites and have the brownie last longer.
Q: Anything else you'd like to share?
A:  Looking forward to your developing more items that will be easy to ship so that we have lots more goodies to enjoy.  We are so proud of you and your accomplishments, especially in Bringing Back the Dessert Place. 
The Meddin Family

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