Mo Harris started her baking company knowing she wanted everyone, no matter the dietary restriction, to enjoy a dessert. Mo is our kind of girl! She started the idea when she and her roommates began eating Paleo and some eating gluten free meals. Mo realized that while they could make so many entrees and snack fit this diet change, they never ate desserts. With her experience baking with her mom, she began trying new things in the kitchen to make the gluten free desserts so many people were missing out on.
Since her adventure into gluten free desserts, Mo has added paleo, keto, dairy free, vegan, nut free, etc. She loves the challenge and believes everyone should have dessert first. With all the experimenting, she still makes time for her job as a spin instructor and loves it’s fun, uplifting community. We want you to know about Mo’s genius ideas, fun spirit, and all the reasons she is where she is today! Introducing Monique Harris.
Early in this interview we learned just how passionate Mo is for baking dessert that people with certain dietary restrictions cannot typically enjoy. She loves the challenge that she gets with each new order and loves to find out what works.
Mo came from a family that loved baking and she loves spending time baking with her mom. Her and her mom got so into making they would go to restaurants, try something delicious, and try to replicate it at home. It usually worked too. When she got the inspiration to bake for people that can’t typically eat “normal desserts,” she knew it was a great need in the industry and opened Bear and the Honey. She not only uses taste, but smell when it comes to spices to make her desserts. While making, and creating a dessert her favorite part is easily the finished product. She loves her clients and making amazing things for them. She loves repeat clients so much because they are continuously excited to order from her.
She is inspired by making classic stuff badass, like their OG chocolate chip cookie. Instead of following the simple recipe for this cookie, they ground up the chocolate chips to ensure there is chocolate throughout as well as other delicious ingredients. The Zona Tart is their “claim to fame” it is an Arizona shaped pop tart dedicated to the Phoenix community. You should also check out her Instagram and see just what we were talking about when we mentioned the cinnamon roll pull apart cake (yum.) and her smash cake, a wedding favorite.
Despite constant challenges she is working on for her bakery, Mo is a spin instructor at the Sweatshop. She tried cycling for the first time at a with her husband and hated it. Don’t we all? She laughs how it was so hard core and she had to leave in the first half of class. She was lured back in and eventually began to have fun with the music, the dancing, and the amazing instructors she was learning from. It was still hard but she enjoyed it. Once Mo got the rhythm, she became obsessed with spin and after four years decided to be a teacher. Mo teaches four days a week at Sweatshop on Central– Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. She understands that with spin and her bakery she needs to be balanced in life. She makes a point to not answer emails after a certain time and save time to have a life outside of work while using spin as a social time for her.
THE THINGS NO ONE EVER TALKS ABOUT, BUT SHOULD
In December of 2016 Mo and her husband found out they were pregnant, shortly after they were told they were ectopic and lost their baby. It was a lot of shock at once. Mo says during this time she just felt alone and cold. She felt like it was all her fault. She knows now people struggle with what they can and cannot control and has learned to do the most she can and begin to rationalize the rational.
So many people are scared to talk about the loss of a baby and so many women are left feeling alone. We are grateful that Mo shared her story with us to ensure that no one is alone during hard times and should not feel that way. When she shared her story and finally had other women to relate to, “it started bringing lightness to the darkness.” Mo let us know that it is okay to talk about our experiences in life and no one should be afraid of being open to others.
We are so lucky to have Mo for this episode to talk about her successes, her hardships, and her busy life. And would love to share a final piece of advice on how she appreciates and celebrates each day.
“Honestly, once the days over, the days over and what you’ve done, that’s all you could have done.”
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Eat: Driftwood Coffee, Luci’s At The Orchard, Ebb + Flow Coffee