We Do Have A Good Time.

On Saturday, we hosted our annual Team PJP bonfire at my house. Because we are so busy during the holidays and can’t find a spare moment for a Christmas gathering, late October is a great time to spend a little non-PJP time together. And like always, this party didn’t disappoint when it came to hanging out and having fun.

While Jeanne and I contemplated a more elaborate menu, Team PJP requested a Mexican fiesta. This gave Jeanne and I the perfect excuse to be out of PJP Buttonwood by 10 am on Saturday to grocery shop for all the supplies. Rarely do we leave the shop before the afternoon on Saturdays, so we sailed through Sam’s like we were on a rumspringa (because we were). We even took a turn through Party City because having a theme felt like a solid reason to spend $80 on plastic margarita glasses, tiny drink umbrellas, and tiki torches to line the pathway to the fire pit.

And then like any time you have some over to your house (or 15 people), you cook and clean for most of the day. And here goes a well deserved shoutout to Behind-The-Scenes Jason because he sawed wood for our fire all afternoon and gathered it all up in a big pile, started the fire early to calm his worries about all the wet wood from the rainy days last week, put up the tiki torches, and blew all the leaves off our deck and front porch.

This year, we focused heavily on the PJP Olympics. We developed a series of RIDICULOUS games and awarded medals to the winners. After our dinner, we played a sudden death Price Is Right game of “Guess Those Sysco Prices”, followed by a whole bunch of other games which only make sense if you spend hours inside of PJP each week. That said, most all of us laughed until we cried. We also spent a lot of time at the bonfire, played pool, and just hung out. In short, it was a delight.

Creating a team that works well together and all strives toward the same goal is no easy feat. Our success is balanced on the team we have put together and the dynamic we create in our store. And basically, it is pretty easy…because we super like each one of them. We try to be kind and considerate to each person on Team PJP and it is so easy to want the best for each of them…even as they leave us and move on to the next stages of their lives. (And in full disclosure, we are in no way perfect at this…I’m sure each member of Team PJP could name a few ways we’ve made them crazy. We are on a learning curve as bosses, remember? I hope all the queso and chips makes up for it.)

Before the night ended, we took a group photo to capture us right before we roll into our busiest season of the year. And when we are all exhausted and feeling the stress of thousands of pies to make, I’m going to text it to each person in the pictures to remind them that for the most part, we do have a good time.