The first Sweet Bytes blog post. Yep, here we are… Congratulations to us! One year ago this bakery wasn’t even an inkling. We were fast approaching the great holiday called “Pi Day” on March 14th and I had offered 5 free pies to friends to celebrate. The first 5 likes on my Facebook post got a free pie.
Heck, I didn’t even know how to make my own pie crust. Rene, my husband, had made it a few times and I watched, but we had both decided that it was easier to buy a crust.
Little did they know…
I ended up making 9 pies that Pi Day. I guess after that I was hooked. The look of happiness on the faces of the pie recipients, the joy from hearing the compliments, and the ultimate seed: “How much do you charge for one of these?” I laughed it off and said it was just for fun, but when I was sitting alone, my mind became consumed with pie. It was no longer good enough to buy my crust. It was no longer good enough to just open a recipe book and copy the recipe exactly as written. I became intrigued by old cookbooks and vintage recipes. I read articles where people told the secrets of their grandmothers. I learned from other people’s grandma quotes that maybe in a “few years” after rolling at least “100 crusts” I would be “OK” at making pie, and this was perfectly acceptable to me. I found myself on the Pie Path. My Pie Path was personal, it was a journey to find an arsenal of recipes that I could call my own. A journey of not giving up and accepting my own imperfections.
At the time I still had no idea that I would even want to have a bakery. In fact, it would have been illegal for us to operate as a bakery from our home in the state of Oklahoma. I just kept baking and baking, and sharing and sharing, and learning and learning. The obsession spread. It wasn’t just pies anymore. It was cheesecake, it was cake, it was taking different desserts and mashing them together. They had to be from scratch. Boxes and cans be damned. They had to be beautiful to look at as well as to eat. They had to taste like happy. This path had become an all-out adventure.
Funny things happen though. As if in answer to the people asking me if I ever considered selling the pies, Oklahoma passed the Home Bakery Act of 2013. (http://webserver1.lsb.state.ok.us/cf_pdf/2013-14%20ENR/hB/HB1094%20ENR.PDF) A Cottage Food Law that allowed home bakeries in Oklahoma to sell their wares privately as long as they followed the new guidelines! Suddenly it became possible! Suddenly, if I wanted to tell people how much my pies cost, they could buy them. Suddenly, I did want to have a home bakery!
Suddenly, I stopped and started several times over the next few months before the act became effective. Saying. “Yes, no, yes, no, yes, no.” as the fear of actually putting myself out here would overcome me and then be beaten back again and again.
The Pie Path won. I have many friends and family that have encouraged me to keep going. The Sweet Bytes dessert menu is now online and growing. Pie is the dessert that started it all. Pie forgave me over and over and summoned me back, like a wise old teacher, to try again and again.