‘Oh God I’m so impressed by you’. ‘Wow I just don’t know how you do that with 2 kids!.’ ‘I’m so jealous, I’d love to do something like that but wouldn’t know where to start.’ These are some of the comments I get on a fairly regular basis from people. I am British but live in Brooklyn, NY with my art director husband and our two children under the age of four. I run my own business making healthy candy called Cracked Candy. On the weekends we go to our very old cottage in Upstate New York which we are slowly renovating with our bare hands. Now I’ll admit that on paper, or rather Instagram, it all looks pretty cool and possibly enviable. But before you hate me let me tell you the truth.
A bit of context for you: after a miss-spent several years in the advertising industry I saw the light, went back to my geek roots and became a high school science teacher. I loved teaching science and when we moved to New York with our 6 month old baby following my husband’s work, I felt sure I would keep teaching on a part time basis as I had been doing since my son was 4 months old.
I was very naïve. New York does not know the definition of ‘part time’, it simply does not exist, certainly not in teaching. So when faced with the choice of not working at all or working full time for a salary which would barely cover child care, I realised I had to think again.
Around this time I came across a natural sweetener called xylitol which is found in fruits, vegetables, birch trees, corn and our own bodies. It claimed to be beneficial to teeth, safe for diabetics and look and taste just like sugar. Sounded too good to be true but after research I could not find a catch. I realised that we all want to make healthy choices but candy makes us happy… then I had an epiphany: I would start my own business making a healthy candy!