A lifelong dream baked into reality

by Matthew O. Stephens

Area residents are now able to savor the flavor of Ashley Whitham-Dinwiddie’s baked goods, and customers may want to get there early as they tend to sell out of product within 6-8 hours of opening so supplies don’t last long day to day.

People hungry for breakfast pastries, cinnamon rolls, scones, kolaches, biscuits, breakfast sandwiches, and more can be sure they will find hearty portions served by friendly smiles at Bake My Day Bakery, 18123 East Appleway Avenue in Spokane Valley. They are currently open seven days a week from 6 a.m. to 1 p.m.

cookie

According to Whitham-Dinwiddie she also uses some specialized ingredients.

“We use organic ingredients and pure unenriched and unbleached flour,” said Whitham-Dinwiddie. “If I won’t serve it to my family, I won’t serve it to yours.”
Whitham-Dinwiddie’s journey has been an incredibly hard-fought uphill battle to get where she is today.

According to the entrepreneur, she had to live with severe health issues for years, and working the job she did at the time exacerbated her health problems even more.

“For 15 years, doctors told me I had everything from multiple sclerosis to lupus to Cushings. To them telling me it was all in my head,” said Witham-Dinwiddie. “I thought I was dying, but nobody could figure it out.”

She explained that a lot of doctors pushed for more pharmaceutical treatments, and it was all making the problem worse. After reading an article explaining there is an autoimmune disease that links to a genetic mutation abbreviated as MTHFR.

Whitham-Dinwiddie had finally found a different avenue for treatment options, and according to her the majority of it was to simply make dietary changes.

MTHFR causes folic acid resistance in the human body and also transforms folic acid into a neurotoxin. So she had to work hard to find products that didn’t contain folic acid, and the process also gave her motivation to start up a bakery that would have alternative dietary options for people.

Ashley and Jeremy
Ashley and Jeremy

Since cutting folic acid from her diet, she was able to let go of her cane and walker, which she had been dependent on for years prior. Five years have passed, and she is going strong and feels that she has cured herself.

Improving her health along with encouragement from her husband Jeremy helped motivate her to follow the goal of starting up her own bakery, and in November of 2019 she was able to open up shop in Chattaroy after leaving her job in the corporate world, and customers flocked immediately.

“We are surrounded by an incredible community out there,” Witham-Dinwiddie said. “People out there came in and supported our startup immediately.”

Nobody could have anticipated the issues COVID would bring to the table either, and it presented Whitham-Dinwiddie with some obstacles as well as she explained.

“We’ve certainly had some struggles,” Whitham-Dinwiddie said. “From our flour being limited and impossible to get (organic flour) during Covid and our customers stepping up to help, to us growing and having a few bumps in the road getting a 2nd location.”

“We have persevered and are excited to see what the future holds in our new location,” she added excitedly.

Whitham-Dinwiddie attributes a lot of the credit to her hardworking crew and three daughters that all helped get things going as well. She explained it was a bittersweet transition after opening the second location, because they eventually had to close the Chattaroy shop due to staffing and equipment issues.

She discussed having to move some of the equipment from the first shop to the new location, and with rising costs combined with other troubles it just made more business sense to shift all business to the Spokane Valley location which Whitham-Dinwiddie opened on her mother’s birthday. She continued by explaining how the customers in Chattaroy can still order baked goods for delivery.

“We still commute to and from Deer Park daily, so it makes sense to continue serving the customers we live near,” Whitham-Dinwiddie said. “Plus, our friends and neighbors out there got us started so I want to make sure they are taken care of.”

Whitham-Dinwiddie has also tried to keep the business involved with school programs and community events as well, and hopes to expand those efforts as her business moves forward.
“I’m really big about being involved with the school programs,” Whitham-Dinwiddie said. “They take care of the community’s kids and it’s our responsibility to help them out when we can.”

She spoke of also having plans to set up booths at community festivals and events, but that is a goal for next year since they didn’t have time to get involved in any this year.

She also offers products like a cinnamon roll wedding cake for personal events such as weddings, and that is really the essence of what her dream has been.

According to Whitham-Dinwiddie she really just loves the community atmosphere that food creates, and she wants to be able to “serve the community and leave the customers with full stomachs and happy hearts.”

 

 

Spread the love

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published.