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It’s part of a regular series on side gigs – nurses with side jobs or interesting hobbies. This month we highlight a nurse who sells baked goods through her Love and Joye business.
During the holidays, many of us include cooking in our activities. It’s a tradition.
For Alyssa Joye Vesey, IA, who works for Walden University College of Nurses as the RN Field Training Coordinator at the Field Experience office, the pastry shop became her side job in her Love and Joye business.
How did you come up with the idea for Love and Joye? Why did you want to do this? How long have you been doing this? Do you cook and bake only specific pastries?
I have had a strong passion for cooking since I was a child, but had no baking experience until I moved to the United States in 2017. Where I am from in the Philippines, people don’t have an oven. at home because every corner has a bakery.
As I was adjusting to my life in the United States, I found myself craving the Filipino baked goods that I used to buy. I couldn’t find them in grocery stores, which encouraged me to try the pastry. I fell in love with it and just started trying to make Filipino desserts and pastries. I also explored and made other desserts from around the world that interested me.
My friends and colleagues encouraged me to start selling the products I made because they felt bad for asking me to cook for them for free. In 2019, I decided to start selling and sharing what I cook in my community in Minneapolis through Love and Joye.
Explain what Love and Joye offers, is, does, and if you are shipping to the country.
Love and Joye is a small business in Minneapolis that primarily serves Filipino specialties. But it’s not limited to that as I also make a variety of cakes and cupcakes for birthdays and parties.
I love to share my Filipino heritage through food, which is one of the most powerful ways to connect people. I have sent my baked goods to family members in parts of the country like Washington, Florida, New York and California. However, due to my schedule, I am not yet able to ship orders nationwide, but dream of being able to do so someday.
Do you find it easy to do even while working as a nurse?
I find it manageable to have a food business on the side because of a strategy I have in place. I ask my clients to provide a schedule for when they need their orders so that I can plan. It helps that my work schedule is consistent and I have days off on weekends. I mainly accept orders when they have been placed a week or two in advance.
What are your biggest challenges with this side concert? What are your greatest rewards?
The biggest challenge is limiting the number and types of orders I can take due to my current schedule. I always want to do more for my business and for my community, but due to time constraints I can’t always. Even though my job has a relatively regular schedule, there are some weeks that are much more demanding and busy than others.
My biggest reward in running the Love and Joye food business is the satisfaction of knowing that people love what I do for them and the conversations it creates. It’s an opportunity to share with people where I’m from and an opportunity for me to learn the same about them. I don’t pay for the advertising, so I let my clients do it for me.
What do you like most about Love and Joye?
I love to see the reaction on people’s faces when they try Filipino food for the first time. The reaction ranges from a big smile to a confused look, as if their face asks, “What’s in there?” I’ve never had anything like this before!
There is only one Filipino restaurant in Minneapolis, so my business is creating more opportunities for people to try something new. Thanks to Love and Joye, I can bring them to the Philippines without leaving Minnesota.