GLEN ELLYN – Glen Ellyn resident Terry McLaughlin has been making life sweeter for many years now.
McLaughlin, who also is the cake decorator and manager at the Dairy Queen on North Main Street in Glen Ellyn, always had the dream to open her own bake shop. McLaughlin recently did just that, opening Terry Lee Creations Creative Bake Shop at 480A N. Main St. in downtown Glen Ellyn. The shop occupies the narrow space that formerly housed Camp Cosmetics.
"I'm going to take over all the cakes in Glen Ellyn," McLaughlin said, laughing.
Coincidentally enough, she also lives on North Main Street with her family.
"It's kind of funny," McLaughlin said. "We live on North Main Street, my shop is on North Main Street and the Dairy Queen is on North Main Street too. It's great."
Her daughter, Emily McLaughlin, a 2016 Glenbard West High School graduate, is working at the store this summer during her break from Graceland University in Iowa. She is a shift manager at the same Dairy Queen where her mom works.
Emily McLaughlin is enjoying the experience.
"I love it," she said. "We always talk about how it's great we get along because we are constantly bumping into each other since it is a really tiny space. I can't complain. I love working for her. I've watched her bake my entire life. And I've baked my entire life, too. I bake for my friends at college."
She helped convince her mother to make her dream of opening a bake shop a reality.
"She called me when I was at school and told me there was a 'For Rent' on the door," Emily McLaughlin said. "And I told her, 'You're opening your own place. This isn't even up for conversation. You have to.' She's always helped me make my dreams come true."
McLaughlin started Terry Lee Creations about 20 years ago.
"We're not your standard bakery," she said. "We do custom orders, we do cakes, we make homemade jams. We try to do different stuff than your plain old bakery."
Baking is in her blood. McLaughlin baked her first cake when she was in second grade.
Cooking and baking run in her family.
"My mother and father both can cook really well along with my grandparents," she said. "I spent a lot of time with my grandparents when I was younger, and they're big bakers."
Her sugar cookies have proven to be a big hit at the store.
"That is one of my biggest sellers for parties and stuff because I can do them with logos on them," McLaughlin said.
The store's peanut butter bars also have been a big seller, she said. The bake shop features a "doughnut of the day" every day as well.
McLaughlin said she enjoys coming up with new creations. On this particular day, the store's doughnut of the day was an orange doughnut with vanilla frosting and orange zest on it.
She takes customer requests as well.
"We do it all the time," McLaughlin said.
If you go
WHAT: Terry Lee Creations Creative Bake Shop
WHERE: 480A N. Main St., Glen Ellyn