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Wives Who WERK: Ms. Tollie Johnson

I’m passionate about love and marriage and even more passionate about helping other wives to discover their passions and chase their dreams while maintaining happy, healthy marriages. As wives, we are the real MVPs. We juggle so many different things and each and every one of us WERKS in one way or another (whether that be by holding a traditional job outside of the home, managing our own blog, business, or brand, or doing something totally different). I’m a firm believer that this is something that should be celebrated, and that’s why I created LiveLifeWell’s monthly Wives Who WERK segment. Each month, I will be interviewing a wife in order to celebrate her and what she does. I would love to feature you! If you’re a wife who would be interested in being featured or if you want to nominate someone else, don’t hesitate to contact me.

In this month's Wives Who WERK interview, I'm featuring Ms. Tollie Johnson, the amazingly talented cookie artist behind the Instagram page, @SweetsandSoirees

I am beyond excited to introduce you all to Tollie, the amazing cookie artist behind  SweetsandSoirees. I have said time and time again that one thing that I love about being married to a professional athlete is all of the connections I’m able to make with other women from around the country (and even the world), and Tollie and I were able to connect because her man (like mine) plays professional basketball overseas. Born and raised in the Midwest, Tollie attended Purdue University and worked in event planning until love and basketball took her to Europe. Although she’s not married yet, her dedication to her boyfriend, his craft, and her own dreams qualifies her as a Wife (to be) Who WERKS!

Tollie

What makes you more than a wifey?

Any girlfriend or wife of a professional athlete will tell you that supporting their man is a labor of love. I’m constantly telling people that feeding my boyfriend, Sandi, is a full time job, and it really is! However, during my first season overseas, I felt that something was missing from my day-to-day life. That’s when I decided to start baking… and I mean baking anything and everything—totally from scratch. I needed an outlet for my creativity and I found it in baking. In the years since, I’ve started managing a baking Instagram account. I love running the account and I’m constantly coming up with new ideas of what to make and share with the world.

How did you determine your passion?

I’ve been obsessed with events and baking ever since I was little. I remember pressuring my mom into helping me bake a wedding cake for my Kindergarten teacher when she was getting married. Even though I started event planning professionally, I never stopped baking on the side. Once Sandi and I started this crazy life overseas, I realized baking is something I can do from anywhere in the world, so it made sense to pursue it further. Sure, lugging my baking equipment around the world is not easy, but I consider myself fortunate to be passionate about an activity I can continue from essentially anywhere.

Tollie SweetsandSoirees

Tell us your love story! How did you and your boyfriend meet? How long have you been together?

My boyfriend Sandi and I have been together for almost seven years now (making me an honorary wifey!). We met at our favorite place, Purdue University, our freshman year during Purdue’s annual event, Grand Prix. Purdue will always have a special place in our hearts and we still love going back to the campus when we’re in the States. Since college, we have lived in Sibenik, Croatia and two different cities in Spain.

How has your boyfriend supported you and your dreams?

Sandi takes on the difficult task of being my official taste tester, a duty that he takes very seriously. That job becomes a little more difficult in-season when he cuts out added sugars, leaving me with the challenge to create “healthy” sweets. Last year, he encouraged me to go to Barcelona for a cookie class I was dying to take. The class is ultimately what led me to starting my own Instagram page for my cookie decorating. Sandi is also constantly supporting me by running out to buy eggs when I suddenly realize we are out, helping me brainstorm original dessert ideas, and even sometimes serving as my hand model.

How do you balance your household/relationship responsibilities and your brand?

I try to plan my posts at least one month ahead so that I can attempt to budget time for each post. I try to work on multiple cookies/posts at once, typically when my boyfriend is out of town for an away game. A lot of my cookies/designs take time and patience, so if I don’t finish while he’s on the road, I try to work on them while he’s at practice so that we can still spend the few off hours he has together.

What is your biggest piece of relationship advice for other women?

My biggest dating advice would be to support each other no matter the circumstances. Whether it’s supporting your significant other’s dreams, goals, or even ideas, it’s important to be on the same team and to believe in each other fully.


Where do you see yourself, your family, and your brand in 5 years?

I hope in five years we are still blessed with the opportunity to live in new places that we may have never seen without the help of his basketball career. I’d also love to eventually sell my cookies and desserts both in America and overseas. I also hope to incorporate more of my dessert adventures from my travels into my feed—we see too much of the world not to share the sweet things we find!

Be sure to check out Tollie’s AMAZING cookie designs on her Instagram page, SweetsandSoirees!


Wifestyle Group
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