Immediately after husband’s demise, Brunswick woman’s baking goes from remedy to booming business enterprise

Kristie Freeman (still left) poses with her fiancé Zeb Dodge and daughter Hannah in their kitchen area on July 7, 2022. John Terhune / The Periods Document

Four-layer lemon raspberry cake. Chocolate peanut butter pie. Tiramisu.

Not prolonged in the past, Midcoast inhabitants in lookup of a late-evening treat may well have been stuck with a candy bar from a vending device or maybe some gasoline station ice cream. But more than the past two years, police officers, college or university learners and other nocturnal sugar fiends have reworked Kristie’s Creations from a aspect hustle into a bustling 24/7 relatives bakery on the in any other case peaceful Hennessey Avenue in Brunswick.

“We bake each day, two shifts a day,” reported proprietor Kristie Freeman. “That’s all we do. We’ll go all evening dependent on what we have for orders. Friday evenings we normally really do not go to mattress.”

Pumpkin muffins. White chocolate blondies. Jumbo citrus twists.

Freeman normally beloved baking growing up. Whilst other youngsters tuned in to Saturday morning cartoons, she favored PBS cooking reveals.

Orders for the rest of this week line a fridge in Kristie Freeman’s kitchen area on July 7, 2022. John Terhune / The Occasions Report

Immediately after a heart assault killed Freeman’s spouse Russell in 2017, baking became much more than a interest for the now solitary mom of a teenage daughter: it was an psychological launch.

“I thought my lifetime was above,” she remembered. “But I experienced to get a occupation, do a thing to aid myself and my daughter. I commenced baking on the side. It became my treatment – just a cause to go on and keep moving.”

Freeman typically shared her creations with her fellow nurses at Mid Coastline Hospital. She waved off their recommendations that she start out a business enterprise but started distracting herself during restless evenings by looking into and designing a industrial kitchen area.

Then, the pandemic arrived, and Freeman located herself amid an ocean of laid-off Us citizens. Needing some way to make money, she decided to commit additional time on Kristie’s Creations, which to that place experienced been a compact aspect project.

“We commenced out with a bake sale, just to tell people today, ‘We’re here,’” Freeman stated. “The bake sale just under no circumstances finished.”

A choice of treats and beverages wait around to be acquired from the Kristie’s Creations bakery stand on July 7, 2022. John Terhune / The Moments Report

Darkish Chocolate Cherry Scones. Ham and Cheddar Quiche. Meatloaf.

Zeb Dodge was not substantially of a baker, but he knew how to cook dinner.

Dodge, as soon as a childhood sweetheart of Freeman’s, reconnected with her in 2019. When he, far too, lost his occupation to the pandemic, he joined his now-fiancé in the kitchen area for marathon baking sessions that on a regular basis extend until eventually 6 a.m.

“It’s our daily life now,” he explained.

Other than using the guide on the bakery’s rabidly well-known comfort foodstuff dinners, which he aims to cook when-per-week, Dodge was dependable for the business’ most exceptional factor: its unattended, 24-7 bakery stand, in which buyers can pay back for an assortment of treats with Venmo, PayPal or, many thanks to a locked drop box, dollars or look at.

“I named Kristie and explained, ‘Why really don’t we make a bakery stand as an alternative of a farm stand?’” Dodge mentioned. “It variety of just went from there.”

Twenty to 30 clients go to the bakery stand just about every week, which accounts for about half of Kristie’s Creation’s small business, in accordance to Freeman. Quite a few late-evening staff, together with taxi drivers and police officers, quit purchase for sweets, as do a escalating variety of faculty pupils.

“Word spreads quickly through Bowdoin,” claimed Bowdoin College shuttle driver Angela Keating, who realized about the bakery from her colleague Jennifer Jacobs. “Before you know it, I’m having kids there every evening.”

It is no mystery why the learners flock to Kristie’s, Keating stated.

“The cupcakes are just divine,” she said. “I would like I would have in no way located it due to the fact it’s genuinely hard to push by.”

Kristie Freeman (left) stands with her daughter Hannah and fiance Zeb Dodge subsequent to their 24/7 bakery stand on July 7, 2022. John Terhune / The Instances History

Million greenback bars. Frozen bananas. Cannoli.

Hannah Freeman, a faculty scholar, cake decorator and occasional style-tester, explained she’s been content to see her mother’s enthusiasm mature into a Brunswick staple.

“Our aspiration expanding up was to have the bakery on the corner,” she mentioned. “Instead, we kind of just designed it in this article.”

Even though the organization has created some new upgrades, like two cameras to reduce theft from the bakery stand’s coolers, Freeman said she’s material with Kristie’s Creations as it is. Immediately after enduring private tragedy and qualified hardship, bringing some sweetness into the environment is extra than value the late evenings in the kitchen area.

“I enjoy looking at the youngsters occur down on their bikes,” she reported. “I enjoy to be that neighborhood place grandmas stroll their youngsters down to get a small take care of. I spent 4 years just depressed and unfortunate. I just want to make people joyful.”

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