Hello, friends! Happy Friday! There is no question that things have been busier than EVER over the past week, but I'm dropping in this morning just before getting back to the grind. Don't forget that the deadline for Thanksgiving Pre-Orders is TOMORROW!
It was necessary to stop and squeeze a new story into the Spotted Series today, as this one is VERY special and incredibly exciting to me. So, while the day is still calm, let's discuss the newest place(s) you can find The Pie Queen products: Whole Foods Markets in Lexington & Louisville, KY. * Eeeeek! *
This story began like many "dream" stories do: I thought mine was too big to accomplish, and that is what my Whole Foods dream was for me. Out of reach.
I told my husband, Brad, that one day I'd pursue Whole Foods. One day when I had a better kitchen, a bigger staff, and blah blah blah. You know how that goes; there was always a reason to assume it would happen sometime in the future.
Then, one afternoon the phone rang at Boyce General Store, and the caller ID said Whole Foods... WHAT? I was out of the store at the time, so Brad talked with the man and gave him my phone number. Of course, I miss his phone call, and Brad then calls me to see how things went with Whole Foods. You can imagine my sincere confusion!
I was certain my husband was joking around with me. That was until I had a voicemail notification, and sure enough, they were seeking me out. Again... WHAT!?
Come to find out, the Lexington store was getting a new location and with that, they were in search of new Kentucky-made products. In November of 2016, Brad and I found ourselves in a meeting with the bakery team in Lexington, KY. It's hard to tell here, but I was a little thrilled about that...
We loved meeting with the bakery team and everything about the experience that day. One of my favorite parts was getting to introduce The Pie Queen products to our hosts, although it never felt real at the time.
You know how sometimes you just know when you're in the right place? I had already felt that during our visit, but then a motto like this one assured my heart that Whole Foods and I were going to get along. Just fine! :)
With the intense amount of excitement, energy, and motivation that follow a meeting such as this one, it was difficult to find that it would be nine LONG months of paperwork + anxiousness until the Grand Reopening would commence. NINE months, y'all! Do you know what that does to a Pie Queen!? Although, regardless of what that time period felt like, this is still so surreal for me to log into. The wait was totally worth it.
I won't lie to you and pretend that those nine months passed smoothly. At one point, the only way I knew to handle my stress was to voice my concerns to the Whole Foods crew. Everything felt overwhelming. Understandably, this isn't a point or place you want to be in when joining a partnership. Even more understandably, I was uneasy and dreading their response.
That is when I was reminded of one of life's most important lessons: You will always have more love and support than you're aware of, and it will continuously surprise you. So will people, and thank goodness for that.
Ultimately, the response I (so nervously) received calmed my nerves, but also made me realize in that moment that I love this company.
The response I received was this:
We love your product.
We love your business.
We love your commitment to product quality.
Thank you again for partnering with us. You tell me where and I'll meet you around noon Monday. Call me anytime. We can slow it down and get a good plan. Have a great Father's Day weekend with your family!
And that, friends, is when I knew that these were my kinda folks. We were going to be a good team, because they are good people.
Following in June, right in the middle of a kitchen remodel AND the week of the Grand Opening in Lexington, I drove up for coffee and donuts with the bakery leaders. We were going to work together on making a plan to slow down the current process.
For me, any occasion to put on real clothes and not be covered in flour is a treat. Even at 4:44 AM, I was elated to be getting on the road and feelin' fancy!
Speaking of treats, be sure to stop by North Lime Coffee & Donuts if you're ever in Lexington, KY. They do NOT disappoint!
Back to the part about that meeting where we were going to make a plan to slow things down... it went pretty well. So well, I somehow left the meeting feeling UBER motivated and D E T E R M I N E D to get my pies in the store for the store's opening.
Queen's Note: It has been asked by a close friend of mine to mention that this was "Very Brie of me."
They aren't wrong, y'all.
I went for it.
In classic Pie Queen fashion, the whole family rode to Lexington together to make the delivery for the Grand Opening. If you look closely in each photo from that day, you can almost see my heart bursting with the pure JOY I was experiencing. All the feels, y'all.
My reason(s) for doing it all. These are my rocks, my besties, and my forever motivation.
Y'ALL! My pies were at THE REGISTER! Is this real life?
The buzz of the pure joy continued. The Pie Queen pies were in the TOP 10 products of the Opening Weekend! I even had to take up MORE by the beginning of the following week. (I will keep asking, is this real life!?)
There are still no words. Except maybe CRAZY, RIGHT!?
This was an absolutely EPIC week in my heart and in our lives. The best memory throughout it, for me, was this precious post by my father. No matter what, a girl just wants to make her Daddy proud, and that doesn't change with age. I am proud to represent Boyce, to call it Home, and I owe so much of that to you, Dad. Thank you for everything.
Finally, that brings us to the most recent development in the Whole Foods venture. Lexington was so much fun, I decided to stop by the Louisville location... with samples. It couldn't hurt, right?
It didn't at all. In fact, an order was placed the very next day for the Louisville store! This brought a second wave of gratitude, disbelief, and pure JOY. Those are three emotions that I find myself amongst a lot these days. I am continuously humbled.