Monthly Archives: October 2016

Someone Call Tori Spelling…

Now that we’ve caught our breath after a busy week of parties and weddings, Jeanne and I had a little time to put some real thought into Thanksgiving.  In years previous, we’ve taken orders until we started to count them all and then wanted to dry heave in the trash can at the total number.  Something tells me this isn’t how Marie Callendar started out…


We started by looking at our final count of pies sold in our first two years.  And then we figured out the percentage of growth between each year (it was 23%, if you are into that sort of thing).  We then took last year’s order count for Wednesday alone, added 23%, and found ourselves at around 940-ish pies.  And there isn’t anything intriguing about 940-ish pies, so we’ve set our goal at 1,000 pies for Wednesday pick up alone.  (Monday and Tuesday pickups average another 800 pies combined, so they are significantly less stressful and significantly more manageable than Wednesday.)  I’ve tried to think of a snappy slogan for our goal…perhaps like “The Thanksgiving Thousand”, but that smacks of a direct-to-Netflix movie option featuring Tori Spelling and Mario Lopez.  (Not that I wouldn’t watch that.  Ahem.)

So, 1,000 pies in one day.  Let’s all just let that soak in for a minute.  Daunting AND exciting.  Scary AND compelling.  Insane AND genius.  I’d say the odds are excellent that one or more of us will cry.  And that we will second guess ourselves quite a bit in the next few weeks (and definitely at 3 am on November 22nd).  But who would be if we didn’t?  Go big or go home, right?

29 days until we find ourselves in the midst of our biggest challenge.  I wonder if Tori Spelling is available to help out that week?  Didn’t I read somewhere that she bakes?

Four Things.

This week has been all about the PJP baking party, keeping our nights busy with baby pie making with legions of new friends.  Here are a few other items of note:

  1. If you are a chocolate cream pie fan (and who isn’t, really), then you might have noticed this week that our chocolate cream pies are looking a little more fancy than usual.  We gave the heave-ho to the chocolate chips sprinkled on top in preference to chocolate shavings.  And our friends at Feast Magazine took notice, naming our Instagram photo of our G-L-A-M-O-R-O-U-S chocolate pie this week (aptly captioned “TurnUp Tuesday”) as one of the 10 favorite food Instagrams of the week.  img_8504
  2. As you know, we really believe that pie is the new cake.  We sell an astounding amount of birthday pie at PJP Buttonwood and usually the purchaser asks if we also sell candles.  For the longest time, we’ve awkwardly paused and then answered “negative, ghost rider”.  (10 bonus points if you caught the Top Gun reference).  At the baking convention in Las Vegas, we met a super fun company that makes candles that come in a variety of colors and the flame burns the color of the candle.  I KNOW, RIGHT?  And they ship them in the display unit, so we just open the box and start selling candles.  They are on track to be delivered tomorrow and we are a little amped at the idea of it all.
  3. The fine people at Cilantro Cooks (a MASSIVE Canadian cookware and bakeware shop) asked me to participate in an Expert Interview series and I was beyond honored to share a few thoughts on entrepreneurship and our plans for #worldpiedomination.  Take a look here.  PJP Canada has a compelling ring to it…
  4. We bought a new sticker machine from a company we met in Las Vegas.  I was able to see some proofs of the sticker artwork today and I almost shed a tear for all the sticker making joy coming our way.  We’ve been assured we will be sticker making lady bosses by Thanksgiving.  YES, PLEASE.
  5. I legit can’t even think of one more interesting thing, but ending on number four just felt weird.  You know how I am…

On My Soapbox…

If you’ve driven by the vacant lot at Providence and Broadway lately, you’ve probably thought that corner could use a little something a little less urban blight and a little more urban chic, right?  For most of recent history, the corner has struggled with crumbled concrete as a war waged on in the Columbia City Council about whether or not a CVS Pharmacy could build on that property.  Eventually, CVS grew weary of the council’s overreaching regulatory demands and packed up their architectural plans and found other cities interested in spurring their local economy with jobs and increased tax revenues.  Ahem.

So when I read the latest edition of the Columbia Daily Tribune and saw that the city council has miraculously found $1.1 million dollars to turn that corner into a park, I seriously could only roll my eyes.  ARE YOU KIDDING ME WITH THAT PLAN?

Because here is the thing…I’m subscribed to the KMIZ text alerts and it seems that hardly a day passes where I don’t get a text alert indicating that shots have been fired in Columbia somewhere.  We have a growing crime problem that no one can seemingly solve, not to mention a drug war that we are losing.  And by all accounts, our local police department is woefully underfunded and understaffed.  The traffic unit of the Columbia Police Department has recently been disbanded to provide more resources to the crime patrols (and I’ve read that there is a significant increase in car crashes in Columbia because of the lack of traffic patrols.)

And while I’m on my soapbox, our schools are overcrowded, many streets are in need of repair, and we are growing faster as a city than our infrastructure can develop.  Columbia is an amazing place to live, but we have some very real challenges to keep it that way.  And you know what doesn’t help?  A $1.1 million dollar expenditure on real estate for a park at the corner of a busy intersection.  Yep, I said it.

Clearly, parks are awesome (no snark intended, I’m pro parks…just ones we can afford and ones that make sense.).  Also, according to the Parks and Rec website, Columbia already has 92 available parks in all areas of our city.  Considering we can’t fully staff the police or fire departments (not to mention pay them a decent salary), or continually grow our education and infrastructure needs without a bond issue at every election, then how do we have $1.1 million dollars to buy real estate FOR A PARK?  And where exactly will the money come from to eventually develop the park in that location?  And if it gets finished, how do we keep it a safe place for people to gather?  (Not to mention…what will one do in that park?  Watch the thousands of cars that pass through that intersection each day?).  It certainly isn’t in a location that is along a common walking path, so where do you park to go to the park?  These are things I suspect the city council failed to consider when they wanted to redeem themselves after the CVS debacle.  Or they didn’t even consider because solving all these other issues isn’t easy, but announcing a new park is a “generational opportunity” according to the mayor.  Whatever that is.

Here’s a better idea…allow a private company to develop an appropriate property at that corner that employees people and provides the benefits that people need.  Take the $1.1 million dollars and use it towards the laundry list of things we all need.  Because you know what I need?  Less ballots for bond issues.  Oh, and less text messages from KMIZ about shots fired.  Just saying.