Monthly Archives: June 2015


So, considering the expanse of our goal of WORLD PIE DOMINATION, you would think that the route to take to get there would be pretty easy to identify…except lately the whole plan of “bake a lot of pies, sell a lot of pies” seems to be lost in all the noise that comes with the day-to-day operations of PJP Buttonwood.  I think the guy that developed the “work on your business, not in your business” mantra really should have named it “sometimes you are going to feel overwhelmed and lost and everyone will want something from you and so sometimes you need to step back from the mixing bowl for some introspective time of thought” mantra.  (And this is exactly why I haven’t written a best-selling book on business practices…brevity has never been my strong suit, and that is the least of it.)

I have at least 15 people currently waiting on some sort of decision from Jeanne and I about something.  Should we do another round of radio ads?  Do we want to continue video work for our website?  Can we make a donation to four different charities that have put in a request?  Do we want to order a logo stamp?  Should we make a banner for our front window?  Should we meet with a broker from a competitor food broker company?  Is Amazon Prime Pantry really as good as it sounds?  Should we expand our Saturday hours?  Are we interested in doing another magazine ad?  And on and on and on.  I would like to say here that I need a personal assistant, but I’ve actually received some unsolicited resumes from people who want to be my assistant…and to those people, I say a) we can’t afford it, and b) even if we could, we would likely drive you crazy (but that said, if you are willing to work for free, fetch coffee, remind me not to leave my sunglasses everywhere, and whisper “serenity now” to me on the regular, definitely email me).

And look, these problems we have at PJP are some very First World Problems indeed.  I’m just saying to you – to the person who desperately dreams of starting a business of your own – that this nagging feeling of overwhelmed rarely seems to dissipate.  I keep waiting for it to subside, especially as I get better at saying no to things we don’t need, want, or have the budget for.  But even so, the line of people who have a service to offer or a need to meet seems infinitely longer than the time and money we have available.  And for someone who could write an entire self-help trilogy on being a people pleaser, IT IS SO VERY HARD.  I’m fairly certain that today I ignored someone, disappointed someone, or upset someone and I’ll basically obsess about it for oh, ever.  I’m really good at that part.

I would suppose that the prudent business person hires someone to make decisions about banners and food brokers and ad space.  And then said prudent business person has extra time to plot how to grow the business (and finish Season Three of Orange Is The New Black).  But the thought of outsourcing our decision-making process makes my throat close up a little.  Because let’s face it, Jeanne and I only excel when we have too much to do, too much to worry about, and too much to second-guess.  What the heck would we do with all of our time if we weren’t doing those things?

Apparently, obsessive is the new prudent at PJP.  Sounds about right.



Take That Pie Away…

So, Jeanne is basically renown in our family for her hatred of all things sour, tart, or fruity.  As a rule, she eschews all fruits (yep, even bananas) and would eat a plate of brussel sprouts before even letting her fork near a chunk of pineapple.  And even worse than anything from the citrus family, she is ardently opposed to any sort of sour or tart candy.  In the same way I’m terrified of that scary lady from Poltergeist that whispers “Carol Anne…come to the light”, Jeanne is terrified of Sour Patch Kids.

The best part of her aversion to these flavors is the face she makes when she inadvertently encounters them.  When I tasted our new Strawberry Lemonade pie that we’ve been working on, I knew immediately that the pie was 1) good, and 2) Jeanne was going to hate it.  Full of fresh strawberries and a hint of lemonade concentrate, everyone who sampled the pie today had rave reviews, proclaiming it “fresh”, “a palate refresher”, and “possibly even better with booze added” (and really, what isn’t?).  We will be sure to sample out more tomorrow.  And in the meantime, here is a 20-second video of Jeanne’s face after a bite.  Enjoy…

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A List.

I wish I had interesting news to share with you this evening, but WEDNESDAY.  In order of completely not important to ridiculously not important, here are some events to share with you.

  1. Baby pie boxes are backordered for 7-10 days.  I harbor ill will toward the entire baby pie box industry.
  2. After working diligently on calculating food costs all day, I worked on calculating non-food items.  Did you know a single latex glove costs .03 cents?  I know, right?  I would have bet on .03 cents for the pair, maybe.
  3. All that said, a foot of plastic wrap actually only costs .007 cents when you buy it on a roll of 2,000 feet.  Is that even a number?  I started to write down that one foot actually costs nothing, but then if we pay $14 for the 2,000 square feet, then what happens to that $14?  I’m the best overthinker ever.
  4. Our order board is so weighed down with orders for July 1, 2, and 3rd that we had to bring out some extra magnet reinforcements to contain them all.  This is my nice way of saying that if you plan to eat PJP over the holiday weekend, ordering soon is a good idea.
  5. We have decided that we will be closed on Saturday, July 4th.  This is my nice way of saying that we will be drinking cocktails and laying on our boat by noon at the very latest that day.
  6. Speaking of July 4th, apparently the new Starbucks plans to open sometime late next week.  And we are making a bold statement…we are staying Team Caribou.  We are addicted to their coffee and their sweet employees, just so you know.  That said, I am taking bets on how long it takes for there to be a car accident between an overeager Starbucks frappachino purchaser and an overeager Sonic cheesy tot purchaser.  I give it less than a week.
  7. Jeanne worked on two new pies today…a cold strawberry pie and a strawberry lemonade pie.  Both looked beautiful.  Jeanne, Sydney, and I tried the strawberry lemonade and it was really good…but really tart.  I think we will sample them both out tomorrow if you want to try for yourself.
  8. Despite trying new recipes, we had our shipping orders all boxed and ready to go well before 5 pm.  I actually confused the UPS guy when I carried them into the store prior to 23 minutes before they lock their doors.
  9. Our overly priced and marginally functional dishwasher suffered some sort of mechanical breakdown today.  We fixed it by employing the longstanding method of “righty tighty, lefty loosey”, as most mechanically inclined people do.  Ahem.
  10. I posted a picture last Saturday of our favorite oven mitt, may it rest in peace.  We actually wore holes in each mitt from overuse after almost 15 months of baking.  I wanted to keep one and pay some crafty person to put it in one of those glass shadowbox things that I know nothing about so that we could cover it in soft lighting and guard it with velvet ropes after achieving #WorldPieDomination.  And then Jeanne almost burned her hand after the hole ripped even more and she threw them in the trash in a fit of irritation.  Now what am I going to feature in the lobby of PJP World Headquarters?IMG_4359