We had the good fortune of connecting with Vi Henderson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Vi, how do you define success?
At the end of each week, I like to take a moment to reflect on my accomplishments and failures, and I’m always thinking about how I can do better as a businesswoman, a wife, and a mother. I’ve worked in several different industries and I’ve found that my definition of “success” evolves overtime, and failure is a big contribution to it. At this very moment, the word “success”, to me, means three things: to be able to find happiness , balance, and fulfillment in my work and life, to be able to make an impact in my community, and to be able to say that I’m a better human being than I was a year ago.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
It wasn’t until recently that I’d officially established Mac & Cream as my full-time job. Many blessings in disguised fell into place to make this dream happen and I couldn’t be happier. It all started 7 years ago when I decided to learn how to make French Macarons so that I can gift them as favors at my wedding. I figured a 2 year engagement would give me enough time to learn but before I knew it, it became an obsession turned side gig.
Fast forward to 6 years, I’m baking out of a commercial kitchen, wholesaling, and shipping nationwide. That’s also when I decided that I wanted a greater purpose for Mac & Cream. I wanted to offer more than sweet treats; a unique experience, a rewarding indulgence, and a role in the community. I’m still in the honeymoon stage of my journey but there’s definitely been obstacles .
Starting an establishment from scratch required late night researching, trial and error, and a lot patience/strength to fall 7 times get up 8, What helped me build a business structure was the experience I brought with me from my previous life in the corporate world; years of mentorship, workshops, and failures,
One of the greatest lessons I’ve learned so far is not over extend myself. By nature, I want to do it all and see results overnight, but I learned that plans take time. Quality and integrity in a business take time to build. Growing up too fast creates a weak foundation. The skills and concepts of building a brand apply to all industries and I find that my purpose also lie on the same path.
Baking is my creative outlet and I wanted to be able to use that to set Mac & Cream apart from others and at the same time, also bring together a community.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I’m the kind of person who travels to eat. So, when my friends visit, there’s never a moment when are stomachs are empty. The highlights of the trip would definitely be BBQ, Tex Mex, and desserts.
Some of my favorite BBQ spots are Pecan Lodge downtown Dallas and Hutchin’s BBQ which has a convenient drive thru. As for Tex Mex, I’d recommend Mia Dia, Cesar’s Tacos in Oakcliff, and Taqueria in Princeton. New York Eats is my favorite Mediterranean restaurant and a must! Finally, dessert to close, I’d recommend banana pudding from Hutchin’s BBQ and whiskey cake from Whiskey Cake.
Favorite hangout places of mine are Legacy West and The Cowboy’s Star Stadium. Both have great food/drink options along with entertainment and events. These are probably my favorite happy hour spots.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I definitely have my friends and family to thank for where I am today; my parents, especially, for supporting my ever changing direction (if I’d decided to be an elephant today they’d support me 100%), my Aunt for being my sounding board and keeping me accountable, my friends for seeing potential in me and fueling my passion, and my husband for being my moral support and keeping me grounded. If it had not been for all of them, I would not have had the confidence to pursue Mac & Cream, my dream and purpose.