Sweet Annie’s and The Villager have resourceful new owners

It didn’t take long for Sweet Annie’s Bakery to become a Flossmoor favorite, with Anne Aboushousha serving baked goods with her signature smile.

But when she decided to sell her business due to her family relocation to another state, she found new owners with similar interests in Michele Williams of Homewood and Omaira Olivares of LaGrange. The two women run an event management business and have been buying wholesale baked treats from Sweet Annie’s for years.

“We knew her products because we’ve bought so many of them,” said Williams. From festivals to baby showers, Williams and Olivares have organized events “from concept to completion,” often providing Aboushousha’s desserts.

Taking over has been “a wonderful adventure,” she said. “Baking, we know,” Williams said. “But mass production? That’s the challenge. Our strength is that Omaira and I are multi-taskers, and we’re resourceful.”

The new owners, who took over in January, also are providing the coffee and beverages that had been sold by Drew Mohan at Drew’s Coffee.

While Williams and Olivares were in the process of buying Sweet Annie’s, they learned that Nancy Schreiber, the owner of The Villager gift shop was ready to sell the business. Williams called on another friend, Valerie Warnsby, to take on the shop with her, and the two women bought that business.

“Valerie had had her own collection of stationery in stores like Target, and she was looking to expand. I said to her, ‘How about being my neighbor?’ We’re big on opportunities. Why not connect the dots? It just makes sense.”

The experience has been wonderful, Williams said.

“We’re having a great time. I like Nancy, and I like Anne. My heart goes out to women who have worked so hard to build their business. We are happy to take on these businesses. It just feels good doing it.”

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A great community deserves a great newspaper. The HF Chronicle was created in June 2014 as an online publication. In December 2015 we began monthly print publication, too. Our mission is to chronicle the life of our community — news by, for, and about the people of Homewood and Flossmoor, Illinois.

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