Ms. Anderson and her son, who is 11, moved into the place in May of last year.
They’re still getting used to all the new appliances and building amenities — the concierge services and fitness room, the deck and the grills. “When taxi drivers drive me home, they compliment the building,” she said.
It’s Ms. Anderson’s first time living in the Bronx. “The area is changing,” she said. “There’s a block that’s nice, then a block that’s not so nice. But Mott Haven looks a lot like Bushwick in the 1990s where I grew up so I’m not really worried about it. I live in luxury now. I got a brand-new, beautiful apartment in a brand-new, beautiful building.”
Her son helped paint and decorate the place, but the transition back to New York has been hard for him. “He’s enjoying the building, but he’s still adjusting to the neighborhood. He doesn’t love his school, but he does love being at home. He’s got his own little corner with a desk and a computer.”
She said he looks forward to getting back into the building’s pool once the warmer months return, and he’s excited about his transition to middle school in the fall.
In the time since their return, Ms. Anderson has been at work on her original idea: baking in her hometown.
She couldn’t afford to open a kitchen of her own so she opened a virtual bakery. She rents storage space in a kitchen facility, shared among many restaurants, which also provides a virtual storefront through which customers can buy Ms. Anderson’s products in person or on apps like Grubhub and DoorDash. “It was very affordable,” she said.
The cost to get her new business started, she said, was “$2,500 to start versus $50,000.”
Ms. Anderson started Lil’ Cup Bakery, specializing in cookies and small, layered cakes that are baked on traditional sheet pans and served in Mason jars. The shared-kitchen delivery model allows her products to be shipped anywhere in the United States in two days and delivered anywhere in New York City in 30 minutes.