Connecting and Creating Memories with Food
When people ask us how we started our family business, we point to the recession and the collapse of the newspaper journalism industry. It was early 2010. I was a national correspondent and my newspaper's parent company had filed for bankruptcy. My editors were closing my office and moving my job from the Midwest to Los Angeles. David and I were newly married. We assumed that David would be able to find work fairly easily in California.
We were wrong.
Months passed. We longed to be together. So we started to cook at the same time - three time zones away from one another - and talk on the phone or over Skype. Cooking became our date night, a way we could connect, create memories and share stories of what happened during our day.
Money was tight. But my parents had raised me to believe that you don't have to be rich to eat well. So for holidays and special occasions, we gave our loved ones edible luxuries of our own making. Hand-made infused sugars and salts, for baking cookies or sprinkling over popcorn. BBQ seasonings whipped up to make friends sweat. Homemade spice kits filled with ingredients discovered at organic markets or off-the-beaten-path farms.
A friend suggested we look into opening a shop on Etsy and sell some of our spice mixes. Maybe, she said, it could help offset the cost of our cross-country flights.
It did that. And so much more. The shop helped us reunite back in the Midwest, where the two of us create, mix and package our popcorn seasonings, BBQ spices and cocktail bar supplies. The lessons we've learned along the way will carry us throughout our lives. Everyone has a story to tell, so be a good listener. Change is scary - and inevitable. Go ahead and give it a big hug. Ginger helps reduce stress. (But sometimes, all you really need is a good laugh and a glass of great whiskey.)
In September of 2012, David quit his day job at an engineering firm and runs the business full time. I'm a journalist by day - and I work with David in the evenings and weekends on our family business that has become a passion for us both.
Now, we've expanded with this stand-alone web site, in addition to our Etsy shop, and built out our own commercial kitchen and a small retail shop inside an old barber shop in Chicago's Old Irving Park neighborhood.
Visiting Chicago? Come by and say hello - we'd love to share a cup of tea and hear your story!
xoxo - Patricia
Find us at our certified commercial kitchen and retail shop at: 4302-A N. Pulaski Road, Chicago, IL 60641
Hungry for a movie-night snack? Pick your popcorn seasoning flavors.
Hosting a party? Choose your cocktail garnish.
Building a margarita bar? Don't forget your colored margarita salts!