Today finished out as our third slowest day of sales in PJP V. 2.0 history.  By 4:30 this afternoon, I just needed a cool compress and a prescription for a single dose of Xanax.  The joys of entrepreneurship, yo.  But in other news…

  1. Our friend Tom from Shillington Box in St. Louis stopped by with another prototype box that could potentially work to sell pie dough in the local grocery stores.  AND he brought us all milkshakes as a surprise.  Tom has moved immediately to the middle of the PJP Inner Circle.
  2. Our dishwasher had preventative maintenance while our fire extinguisher was being tested and approved.  If only the health inspector could have shown up at that moment…it would have been the trifecta of regulatory approval.
  3. Did you know that PJP is #8 of 44 things to do in Columbia, according to Tripadvisor?  COMPLETELY AWESOME.  We couldn’t be more honored.  (I’m competitive enough to covet the number one spot, but I can’t think of a way to knock Rock Bridge State Park out of the way.)
  4. We’ve been experimenting a bit with fried pies in anticipation of Roots and Blues.  Except we went off the rails and deep fried all sorts of candy bars out of sheer curiosity.  So basically, I’m not sure about pies but I can tell you that deep frying a Kit Kat is as embarrassing – and DELICIOUS – as you might expect.
  5. Jeanne accidentally deleted our fancy new gift registry that I created in Square.  I’m not sure how.  And neither is she, actually.  I see binder and scrapbook paper shopping in someone’s future.  And by someone, I mean Jeanne’s…

Dead On Accurate.

You might have noticed that it was approximately 10 billion degrees today.  And at PJP, despite setting our air conditioner on a frosty 68 degrees…it remained a balmy 81 for the majority of the afternoon.  Our air conditioner was installed when the building was constructed and I fear that it is hanging on merely by the new filter we installed a few months ago.  If I could get to the roof, I would scrub it down and tell it how much I love it and to please never quit on us.  I would even consider building a gazebo over it and a cool misting fan to help it along.   And bring it flowers, if necessary.

And before you think I’m crazy, I’ll remind you that our landlord makes no capital improvements to the property.  We are responsible for replacing well, EVERYTHING during the term of our lease.  And the last time I checked, a new commercial air conditioning unit clocked in at $38,000.  Which makes me think the air conditioner business is more lucrative than the pie business.  Except that I don’t know anything about air conditioners…except I like them to work.  And it makes me think I would buy one of those massive shop fans and sweat before paying $38,000 for something I’ll never own, since it would be installed on a building that I don’t own.  So can we all please just send good vibes to our air conditioning unit?  She needs it desperately.

In other news, we were honored to host a group of teen girls from New York City to PJP over the weekend.  They were in town as part of a leadership academy hosted by Stephens College.  They were all super smart and interesting and none had been to Columbia before (and a few had never had pie, which we remedied immediately.)  During our Q&A time, a few asked about my family and wanted to see pictures.  When I showed her one of Behind-The-Scenes-Tech-Guru Jason and I on our recent Caribbean vacation, one girl – in the most innocent way ever – said “wow…you look so much better there…you don’t have dark circles under your eyes!”  TOUCHE, MY FRIEND.  I actually busted out laughing because she was 100% dead on accurate (it is amazing what sleep and makeup does for a girl).  Out of the mouths of babes.

Also, I probably wasn’t really hot when that photo was taken…


Last week, we finally achieved a PJP milestone MONTHS in the making.  MONTHS.  And before you get all on the edge of your seat like it is something aaaahhhhhmmmaaazzzing…like baking pies with Oprah on the cover of her magazine, rest assured…it isn’t.  (But, Oprah, if you are reading this…we would totally bake pies with you.  Or for you.  Whatever.)

But for us, this milestone is almost just as good.  And here it is:  last week, for the first time ever in PJP history, we had 9-inch pies, baby pies, Jelly Jar pies, and three-inch tarts bagged and ribboned ALL AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE ON THE SAME DAY.  And people, we even jarred up Dutch Apple and Peach Praline topping for sale.  SERIOUSLY.


And look, I realize that celebrating that we baked all the pies when our job is to, well, bake all the pies might seem ridiculous to the casual PJP acquaintance.  But our history of struggling to be fully stocked in all different types of product is well documented.  (Cue here a loop of someone asking if we have any tarts for sale.  Because it happened almost every day.)

So what changed?  Well, for starters, our solid recognition that it needed to be done and it could be done if we just really put some significant thought into it…that was the big corner piece of the puzzle that anchored the whole endeavor.  And also, we’ve become so much faster at baking over the last year.  And most importantly, we’ve got a solid crew working with us each morning…making space our biggest hurdle toward getting it all done, rather than time.  That simple shift made all the difference.

And honestly, just between us, when we made it all happen for three days in a row and people were checking out with pies in all sizes…it felt a little overwhelming.  I would guess because it is a little easier for me to sort of stomp around about why we can’t get a goal completed than rest in the joy of completing it.

Probably because I’m already thinking about what we are going to do next…