November finally brought fall to the central valley of California. Pomegranates and persimmons have arrived, pecans are dropping off our tree and covering our driveway, and beautiful leaves have drifted to the ground in the old neighborhoods surrounding downtown. It's a lovely time for baking, biking, and striving for balance as the days shorten.
Speaking of balance, I took less subscription days in November as we struggle to find ours. With those days off I had a little more time to find some openness...
I took meals and bread to some friends in need due to illness and surgery. We had long afternoon playdates in the park with friends. I baked bread for a potluck, where we listened to beautiful music and socialized with other grownups and kids. We went to a lantern walk with the local Waldorf homeschool group along the wooded creek trail and met some new friends...
I did some spontaneous things, like making chocolate chip cookies on a whim and not following a recipe, and delivering them to friends. Or doing bread deliveries on foot around downtown and stopping to talk to people on the street.
I decorated this crate for carrying bread, and went to the farmers market on Thursdays where we bumped into old friends.
But the main terrifying leap that loomed over the whole month was Mod Shop, I had signed up back in August to have a booth at the craft market at the end of November, I planned and planned and planned, agonizing over the details of what to make, the schedule of how to bake it all and drove my family crazy fretting about it.
It can be scary to put yourself out there. To BE a "brand" and try to sell. The whole thing made me uneasy. On Thursday we ate thanksgiving dinner, and then went home and started to bake. that night I stayed up until 2am making tray upon tray of sourdough Madeleines, and feeding my starter and making doughs and shaping loaves.
On Friday I woke up early and baked loaves almost all day. In between taking them in and out of the oven I made more doughs, zested lemons, roasted garlic and plucked rosemary. As the night went on into the wee hours I decorated cards describing each of the breads with my friend, and we placed my table in the living room and sorted out how it would look. Finally and 2am I went to sleep nursing the baby.
Saturday morning I woke early. I made tray after tray of sourdough Pain d'epi.
I made tray after tray of roasted garlic dragon tails.
I made tray after tray of rosemary lemon zest fougasse. Then I took a shower and packed it all into my car. It smelled great. I was nervous and had a stomach ache. At 5pm I was set up. I took a deep breath and prepared myself to stand behind my table and talk about my bread until 9pm, hoping I wouldn't have to take too much of it back home with me.
At 5:21 I was completely sold out. I'm still trying to process how it unfolded. I saw so many smiling faces, and received so many hugs, I felt the blessed, sacred, loving, heart opening, joyous spirit of sweet community love. I felt magic and electricity. Realness, Genuineness, Sincerity, It was beautiful. THANK YOU for coming to see me.
I'm taking December off from subscriptions to take a quiet pause, hibernate a bit, and think. I'll still be offering weekend breads and specials while I'm dreaming of what to do next, and I'll tell you all about it next month, in our next tiny bakery update. Thank you, for being a part of it all by being here.