Today we’d like to introduce you to Cheri Morgan.
Thanks for sharing your story with us Cheri. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
Typical story. Made it for Christmas gifts for years, people encourage you to sell, blah blah. So, Jan 3, 2014, I posted on Facebook that I would start selling it. I initially had purchased the cheesy Christmas take-out containers on clearance. But what if they wanted it during the year? What would “everyday packaging look like…? And what would I call it? Well, as I like to say, it was a total “God Thang” and in just two weeks I had it all… the name, the logo, the packaging, you name it. The first year I took small baby steps to “feel it out”. Sept ’15 is when I felt like wildtoad toffee really got started. And let me say, I’m SOOOO glad the original name I picked out was already taken as a website.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Now, THAT’S funny!!! Smooth road? What’s that? Every year, something seems to rear its ugly head! I guess,
besides having pecan issues one year, my largest PITA was when I had issues with salted butter not being “salty”. We have a buttery explosion at the first taste and it wasn’t there. It wasn’t The Toad. I don’t even want to think of how much I lost. Needless to say, I try the butter EVERY time before I leave the store! And it’s tried to get me again recently. My supplier changed their supplier and the salt level in the butter just lacked. Why is that so important? Just like with other food, the salt is what brings out the flavor of the butter. And there have been many other, though thankfully minor, panics along the way.
So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the wildtoad toffee (2 words, all lowercase) story. Tell us more about the business.
First of all, it’s NOT about the toffee. It’s just the vehicle. Basically, what it is, is a ministry. Yes, I’m OCD when it comes to quality and labels being straight (true, but also an inside joke). And, as one of a dying breed of native Fort Worthians, I was taught from an early age that your name is all you have. I feel that it’s MY name on each and every package that goes out.
What we do want is for people to feel the love put into the toffee as well and when they leave our booth at an event. I love to mess around with them, give them a hard time and make them laugh. When they leave us, I want them to feel like they have a new friend. We’re the “loud and crazy” booth, full of laughter and love. Yeah, I know it sounds corny!
I LOVE to watch their face when they first try the toad, because it’s not what they expect. It’s not hard and sticky, instead very buttery and smooth. We keep threatening to start taping people when they first try it.
Back to the ministry part. Someone could be having the worst day ever, they come and try the toad and a huge smile comes over their face. We were able to bring them a couple of minutes of joy. It’s the woman standing on the side with tears in her eyes telling me she never thought she’d ever taste her mom’s toffee again. It’s the notes we get from people of what sweet memories returned upon trying the toad.
Another huge part of the ministry is being able to offer women who, for one reason or another, have trouble
finding a job or retired and want something fun to do, or not wanting to go back to the corporate mess. Us “women of a certain age” still have SO much to offer but often can’t even get so much as an interview. That’s where we come in. I have been blessed with some incredible women who “get it”… what this is all about. They also take pride in what goes out the door and I trust them completely. I HAVE to be able to have that trust, as they are my final “quality control”. The best compliment is that they treat it as if it were theirs.
EVERYTHING we do is by hand. From making and packaging, to making the custome bows. (I sit in front of the TV and make bows. What an active social life I lead!)
Or, to put it in a nutshell:
It’s giving that person who might be having the worst day ever, 5 seconds of joy. It’s the look of surprise on their faces when they try it, expecting something different. It’s giving “women of a certain age” who still have so much to offer a fun place to work when others might not even give them a second glance. It’s the “crazy booth” at shows and events where customers are given a hard time and they give it back. It’s where they can get razzed for buying a “stupid size” bag (it’s gone before the end of the aisle, so you say, “I’m so stupid, why didn’t I buy a larger bag?”) It’s someone getting misty-eyed, saying it’s the best they’ve ever eaten or that they never thought they’d ever taste their mom’s toffee again. It’s customers sharing special memories of toffee.
Besides all that, we give you the best toffee there is out there!
Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
I really don’t know how much “luck” has played in all this. I can see where God has been preparing me for this for years. I’ve pretty much been self-employed in one way or another, for the past 35 years. And I’ve learned a tremendous amount over those years… mainly in what NOT to do! But, this time is different. He has continually shown me, this is about SO much more than the toffee and that He has got our back. It would take me days to tell you all the “God stories” that have no other explanation as to why they happened. I love to think back, see how far we’ve come and say “Ohhhh, NOW I see what this/that was all about!” I can’t tell you how many times I’ll be talking to Him about something and shortly, there it is. Just the people He has put in my path is amazing!
- Website: www.wildtoadtoffee.com
- Phone: 817.223.4911
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: wildtoadtoffee
- Facebook: facebook.com/wildtoadtoffee
- Twitter: wildtoadtoffee
Farrar Food Photography