Image care of Kristina Traficante Photography
Grandma Emily with my dad
Nonna Flavia & family
Who is MJ!
Mary Joy, better known as “MJ” is a fun-loving, passionate person who loves many things, including: life, travel, art, family, and of course, baking! As a first-generation Italian-American, MJ credits her two Italian grandmothers for her love of food and affinity to baked goods. After a seven year stint on Wall Street, MJ left to pursue a Certificate in Interior Design. Though she still has a passion for design (check out her Blog at Design2Life), she discovered she could meld her love of art & design with her love of food… particularly cookies! She loves animals, and is a huge advocate for the conservation and anti-poaching of elephants around the world (hence, the logo!). From as early as anyone can recall, MJ has had a passion and love for elephants—including her childhood lovey, Ella— that has only grown stronger with time. She supports several elephant charities and has an adopted Elephant named Emily, through The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (http://www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/). She currently resides in Northern New Jersey with her husband, two sons and rescue cats, Philip & Leela.
MJ started baking at a young age, and over the last few years would make cookies as favors for friends. Back in May of 2013, she made cookie favors for her son’s baptism and brought an extra one in for a co-worker to enjoy. Her colleague loved it so much, she had MJ bake more cookies… and more cookies… and more cookies. Before she knew it, she had friends and strangers asking if she could make them “this” or make them “that,” and in August 2013 she started the official Facebook page, and MJ’s Custom Cookies was born!
MJ firmly believes the most important ingredient is love, and that the ideal cookie is not just delicious, but a work of art!
How MJ's Got Started
1. MJ is a published author in Economics.
2. She is married to a combat veteran, and dang proud of him!
3. Favorite shows are cartoons, particularly Futurama.
4. She is an Aquarius.
5. Has an extensive collection of elephant figurines.
They are all gifts from friends and family from their travels all over the world.
6. MJ is a major Foodie, with Ethiopian being her current favorite cuisine.
7. Is a dual-citizen of the U.S. and Italy.
8. Her weakness is shoes, and owns an unreasonable number of pairs.
9. She is a die-hard SU Orange Basketball fan.
10. Favorite book is “The Discovery of Heaven” by Harry Mulisch
11. MJ dreams of one day being a character on SNL or The Simpsons.
12. She has her own set of tools, complete with drill and impact driver.
13. Her favorite activity is exploring and walking around a new city, making sure to
taste the local cuisine!