SUNSHINE 4/7/2021

Quick things:


Happy sunny day, friends! I hope I’ll be able to open many newsletters this way in the coming weeks.

I’m writing to you this evening from my porch. Elliott and Bronwen are holding down the fort at the store (holding down the store?) while Dusty runs some errands, and I just couldn’t stand to write from my office when it’s so freaking gorgeous out, so here I am! It’s almost¬†too sunny where I’m sitting, but I’m not really in a mental place where “too sunny” is a thing, so I think it’s glorious.

I’ve even got a glass of crisp white wine by my side — though before I took my first sip, a wasp took an interest in it, and then took a bath. I fished him(?) out with a spoon and then watched him drunkenly clean himself off before flying away. A happy ending, I think, though I did have some moments of wondering if saving wasps who like my porch is something I should be doing. I don’t think I’ve ever been stung when I didn’t deserve it, though — like the time I crushed a yellow jacket against a cooler handle at the market — so I don’t have a lot of animosity towards vespids or apids, and in general, well, if you’re not hurting me (or anyone else), I’d like you to be able to go about your business.

Can you tell that I have now had a chance to drink most of that glass of wine?

Dusty asked me earlier what topics I was considering for this week’s newsletter and I said, “Nothing. I’ve got nothing.”¬† So that blank plus a glass of wine, and, well, here we are.

Recycling this image because we’re having it for dinner tonight is cool, right?

We’re in the thick of daily operations, of interviews, of tying up loose ends that didn’t feel like they mattered when we were in the push to open our doors but are now feeling increasingly urgent. I finally designed and ordered new gift cards (no word on when they’ll arrive, but I think it’ll be a few weeks. also, the minimum order for a custom design was 1,000 cards, so we hope you’ll consider them for all your gift recipients who eat! just not quiiiite yet), and I designed and ordered new business cards, and I attended a “virtual conference” hosted by our POS company, during which they asked, “If you were given a blank check to upgrade one thing in your store, what would it be?” and I was like….well…..this is awkward….but on that breakout session with their COO and Director of Marketing, I told them my piece, and they at least acted like maybe they’d try to help with some of the ongoing issues we’re having.

Other things we’re thinking about here are how to juggle all the things the kitchen is currently producing, but also what else should we be making? There’s some internal tension, there, yes. Do you want to work in our kitchen?

I’m also thinking a lot about what I want to be cooking, which ties in nicely with also trying to migrate the recipes from our old site to the new one. I want to make this Radish & Farro salad, but I’m not doing much Sunday meal prep these days, and the cook time on the farro keeps getting me. Would you buy pre-cooked farro if we sold it? And don’t you agree that “Radish & Farro” just doesn’t have quite the same ring to it?

Anyway, as I was writing Dusty came by to drop off the car before heading back to the store and apparently what we’re having for dinner tonight is pork chops on the grill and sauteed spinach. I think I’m also going to advocate for some roasted sweet potato and onions, because today we got the CUTEST little yellow onions and I want to peel them and roast them whole. And then I think, “Julia, it takes just as long to roast sweet potatoes and onions as it does to cook farro, and both are basically entirely passive time, but with the farro you don’t have to do any chopping or peeling or anything!” Imma make that radish and farro salad happen one of these days soon. Maybe I’ll do that tonight (sans almonds) instead of the sweet potatoes and onions. Sold. Welcome to the inside of my brain.

Well, the sun has now disappeared behind the Susquehanna Art Museum, and now I need to go check the pantry to see if we have farro before Dusty leaves the store. So! without having managed to really talk about anything, I’m going to wrap this up. I hope you have been finding ways to enjoy all this sunshine, whether outright or wedged into the rest of your life. It’s got me dreaming of five weeks from today when, if all goes well, I will be two weeks post my second shot and maybe, just maybe, I’ll be enjoying sunshine on a porch other than my own. I hope you’ll forgive me if the newsletter is late that week.

❤ Julia

P.S. Confession — I didn’t just watch that drunk wasp clean himself, I recorded it and uploaded it to YouTube. It’s two minutes of close-up wasp, so it may not be as interesting to you as it was to me, but, you know, just in case you’re curious: