We had the good fortune of connecting with Deanna Robinson and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Deanna, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
“Risk” is a funny word to me. I can honestly say that I have lived an extremely risky life to most. I have ridden in cars with strangers, traveled across the country to go on dates, and even jumped into the middle of an ocean without knowing how to swim. I have never viewed risk the same as others. Ever since I was young, I have been what I call “a line toter”. I will always find out how far I can go before I get in trouble or caught. Sometimes this was a great attribute, other times it wasn’t, but I realized it is who I am. Because of the risk that I have chosen to take I have had opportunities that would not have been presented to me otherwise. For example, I worked for American Airlines for five years (was laid off due to covid), and during that time I traveled the world. I traveled with friends, alone, it didn’t matter. If there was somewhere I wanted to go I would. People looked at me like I was crazy. I flew to New Zealand to have lunch one day; they didn’t understand that in customs so I had to be subject to a strip search at the airport (they thought that I was a drug dealer). This could have been a bad experience, but now I have this fantastic story to tell. The reason why I chose to continue to take risks is because I firmly believe that the bigger the risk the bigger the payoff, and that is why I am in a business for myself. Starting a business is extremely difficult, you put everything on the line, and it can be considered the biggest risk of our lives, but I must take it one step further. I am not building a business; I am building an empire and I am willing to risk everything to gain everything.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I’m sorry this answer is really long please feel free to cut it down.

I got pregnant at 27 while in culinary school. I found out I was going to have twins and moved to Louisiana to live with my parents three days later. Since then, I met my husband on e-harmony, had two more children then divorced 9 years later. I traveled the world, met tons of people, and learned about different foods, and flavors. I have gone to 4 or five different colleges studying everything from accounting to human sexuality. I graduated from Tarrant County College with a 3.75 and got accepted into Harvard, where I went for a short period of time (it’s crazy expensive) but ended there with a 3.5 average. I have worked in restaurants as a server, a line cook, and as a hostess. I have had jobs where I did phone customer service, blue tarping (putting blue tarps on roofs) in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, and was even a phone tech for internet and cable. Why am I saying all of this? I am saying all of this because what sets me apart from others is I don’t have fear in me. Yes, I get scared at times, but I have never allowed fear to prevent me from getting to where I was meant to go. The problem I had while growing up was that I did not know where that was. I have never had a problem picking up and moving to another state alone to start over fresh. I refuse to live an unhappy or unsatisfying life. there is a standard life that society had planned out for me, I realized a while ago that what was “planned” was for someone else.

When you live a life with no plans, it makes it easier for you to never get disappointed. When I was laid off at American I was devastated. I did not know what I wanted my career to be, which direction I should go, or the path I should take. I ended up here professionally due to a series of unfortunate events. After American, I began working at Delta Airlines, and Saltgrass Steakhouse simultaneously. One night on my way home from Saltgrass on my second week of training at Delta I was hit by a semi-truck on the highway. My back broke in two places, and I ended up with three herniated disks and two pinched nerves. Needless to say my career at Saltgrass was over. Soon after that, my employment with Delta had to end due to doctor appointments, and schedule conflicts. I did not know what I was going to do.

My son was selling cupcakes in his neighborhood for a dollar each. I told him to make me these cupcakes. He did, I said “Baby we can do better than this”, and that same day I showed him how I make cupcakes. We came up with the idea to sell them in the neighborhood for one day. I had six kids with me, my four children, and my roommate’s two kids. Four children went out to sell door to door and two stayed home and baked with me. We received text messages with the orders and started baking. That day we sold enough cupcakes for the kids to make a profit of $76. I asked them what they wanted to do “split the money or invest” They all decided to invest. That was the day we came up with the name “Kid Kakes”. The idea was easy but the path to get there was not. I had to lose everything to see. Before the layoff, before the accident, I never saw myself doing my own thing.

My life has been so extra. I died once while giving birth, I had a pulmonary embolism on an airplane, been hit by a semi, had everything taken from me in my divorce, and I was 340 lbs at one point. The one thing that I have learned on this journey is that I will never give up. If I am breathing, I will be moving forward. I see people give up on happiness, business ideas, careers, and even their children. That will never be me. That is why creating this brand has been so important for me. I want the world to know that it doesn’t matter what bad happens because there is always good waiting. It doesn’t matter how negative people are because they don’t determine who you are meant to be. This brand is about just being more. I knew that if I were to succeed, I would have to be different, I would have to stand out, so I do because I am. I have studied the art of baking, the chemistry of what makes what, and used those tools to make the perfect kupkake. My brand is me and I am my brand. I’m not perfect, but I guarantee the kakes I make are. All of that, just like all of me was created from my experiences, my loves, and my losses. Everything I am goes into every kupkake. That’s the difference.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Dallas. I love that place so much and consider it a necessity for a happy life. They offer messages, have over ten different sauna rooms, an indoor water park, a swim-up bar, and a restaurant. They have everything you could want for a great day or night. As for food, I would take her (Katie) to “Mariscos” I don’t prefer the location I just know that Mexican food there is authentic and fantastic. On one of the nights home, we would order “Marcos Pizza” because it’s currently my fav. We would go to Clyde Warren Park in Dallas and enjoy the food trucks and spend a day at Barnhill Vineyards in Anna TX. My parents live in a high-rise in downtown Dallas with a fantastic pool, we would go there to just lay, then walk around the city streets looking for random things to do. While walking around we probably would end up getting a tattoo that had some significant meaning, and flirt with people to get drinks at some random bar (we are both taken but that doesn’t mean it’s not fun).

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My first shoutout goes to God because I would be nothing without Him. Everything that I have learned, every person I have met, and every problem I have had to solve have led me to the person I am today. I truly believe that He has given me the strength to make it through the impossible and protected me from the horrible. As for everyone else;

My children: My kids literally saved my life; they have given me the courage to pursue my dreams and are constantly there helping me make my dreams come true.

My brother: My brother’s name is Darnell; he lives with me and has special needs. He has made it possible for me to bake every day and make messes. Every day he is there to make the kitchen look like new. I never have to worry about what the house will look like when I get home after being at an event for 12 hours. He helps me keep my sanity. I am pretty sure he was put on this earth to be my angel.

Chris: I recently started dating Chris. From day one he believed in me. Not believing in me passively, but in a real genuine “you can do anything” type of way. I have never had that before, to have someone who sees me for being more, without wavering is rare, and I know for a fact that I would not be where I am if he wasn’t here by my side.

Arun: We will say he is a real “angel investor”. He believes in my vision and believes in me.

Last, but certainly not least, my parents: My mom and dad have been there since day one. They have given me the tools that I need to succeed. From my dad reading with me when I was 3 to my mom working late hours overnight while going to school during the day, my parents have done everything they could to make sure we were in the best environments (neighborhood, school, college, etc.). They believed that I was something special and have cultivated the very person I am.

Website: thekidkakes.com

Instagram: instagram.com/thekidkakes

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/feed/?trk=guest_homepage-basic_nav-header-signin

Facebook: facebook.com/thekidkakes

Yelp: kid kakes

Image Credits
Taylor Pendleton Rachel Sakakeeny

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