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Meet Christina Wong of Baking With Chickens in Highland Park

Today we’d like to introduce you to Christina Wong.

So, before we jump into specific questions, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I started Baking With Chickens last year when I was between jobs and had extra time to be creative and cook. As I was leaving my last job someone said to me, “Well, you’re just not good at that.” And that just struck a nerve. So I began ‘rage baking’ because it made me feel better and so I could eat my feelings in delicious sugar carbs. I shared my baking exploits in the kitchen on Instagram and about my backyard chickens that I keep at my house in Highland Park. People seemed to really love the content and learning where eggs came from, so I kept making more.

I’m not an expert baker. In fact, I always said myself that I was a better cook than a baker because I’m not precise enough and don’t like to measure. But I really enjoyed it. As I looked around at other baking blogs on Instagram and YouTube I noticed all the photos were so damn perfect, styled within an inch of their life, and it felt totally unattainable. But real-life isn’t perfect. Trying and failing is how we learn and get better.

Why was nobody sharing about their failures and what they learned from them? I wanted to celebrate beautiful baking successes AS WELL AS the ugly fails, so with a little help from my backyard chickens Raspberry, Lady Olgaberry, Butterberry and Fizzleberry I created Baking With Chickens, a baking blog/vlog about chickens and their eggs.

It’s messy, I make mistakes, bakes fail miserably and sometimes a chicken poops all over the photoshoot. Episodes are filled with ambitious baking projects, nerdy chicken and egg knowledge, DIY projects and other weirdly wonderful things like chicken-shit bingo, tea parties on the rooftop deck with my chickens and other silliness with my menagerie of animals that will make you laugh out loud.

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?
Creating content and starting my own side hustle was a lot harder and more complicated than I anticipated but it’s also been the most rewarding. I’d wake up and work on editing episodes, taking photos, writing blog posts, optimizing SEO, creating affiliate links, and learning about YouTube algorithims for 12-15 hours a day. But I LOVED it because it was my creative project to bring to life.

I find that it’s hard to be creative and have time to create content while working a demanding full-time job. When I was between jobs, I had more time and freedom to be creative. With a full-time job, I’m exhausted at the end the week and feel less inspired to bake on the weekends. Trying to balance a side hustle with a full-time job is definitely a struggle. Mad props to the people who do this successfully or are trying! I have so much respect for people who juggle it all. When I first started I was making new episodes every week, then it went down to every two weeks, then one a month, and I’ve been so busy that it’s been a couple of months since we posted a new episode.

But the positive reactions we’ve been getting are encouraging and inspired us to make it more than a side hustle. My producing partner and I decided that this year in 2020 we’re going to go all in on Baking With Chickens to build this as a self-sustaining business. Which means leaving my full-time corporate job to make this dream a reality!

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Baking With Chickens – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of and what sets you apart from others.
As Creator of Baking With Chickens, I want to inspire people to do or try the things they love and that makes them happy even if they think they’re not good at it. WHO CARES! Push past your own fear and hesitation, just try it! What do you have to lose? If you like it and it brings you joy just do it. Don’t like other people (or a chicken) s*** all over your dreams.

My content and episodes are about baking projects using eggs from my backyard chickens and talk about what it’s like to keep chickens in Los Angeles, plus nerdy chicken and egg facts sprinkled throughout. My four backyard chickens lay more eggs than we can eat. I use their eggs in almost everything I make.

I keep it fun, entertaining, silly, down to earth and educational with plenty of funny chicken moments. Hopefully viewers learn something they didn’t know before about baking, chickens or eggs, or feel inspired to try a baking project of their own. I’m honest about my mistakes if something failed misterably or how a mistake led to a learning opportunity or great discovery (e.g., Too much salt in the vanilla wafer cookies turned out to be incredible in the Banana Pudding!).

I’m most proud when people who don’t bake reach out to tell me that tried baking one of the recipes because my episode inspired them.

So, what’s next? Any big plans?
As I mentioned, this year my producing partner and I decided to take Baking With Chickens from side hustle to full-time. We’re going to go for it and try make this a self-sustaining business over the next several years. Anything is possible! For me personally it’s terrifying to leave the comfort and security of a full-time corporate job, especially one that I really love. But we felt that unless we put in our full effort we’ll never know if Baking With Chickens could grow into something meaningful for us. But my excitement about the possibilities far exceeds my fear. I just resigned from my job this month!

Our hope is that this can become our business that we can do from anywhere in the world and become financially self-sustainable. It would be the dream to do an international version of Baking With Chickens using ingredients from other countries and keeping chickens abroad. Maybe a van-life edition where we build a van and hit the road with the chickens, cats and dog and drive across the country baking and filming episodes from a tiny van kitchen. Van life chicken coop?!

Pricing:

  • Baking With Chickens is FREE to watch and enjoy on YouTube and IGTV. Subscribe to the channel on YouTube and follow on Instagram.

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Image Credit:
Baking With Chickens

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