News

Can we be real?

Posted by Robin Abel on

Is being "real" important to you?  How desirable is it in our culture?  The other day I had a brief meltdown.  Inventory control and cash flow are hard to manage in any retail establishment.   Big companies pay good money for lots of people to manage all of this because no matter how great of a product you have, bad inventory control and cash flow can take anyone down.  Established companies have charts and history and brilliance to make educated guesses where I have none of this. Wallowing in my momentary panic (let's make a mountain out of a molehill) I backed up and...

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How's the store?

Posted by Robin Abel on

Most people know that opening a business takes a lot of work and changes your life in major ways.  But who knew it would change the opening questions people ask.  You know, when you run into someone at the grocery store there is an exchange of meaningless pleasantries. "How are you?" "I'm fine.  How are you?" "Fine thanks." This doesn't happen to me any more.  Which I guess is good because that little exchange drives me crazy because somehow you need to know whether they are asking to really find the answer or just asking because it's polite.  I digress, sorry... So this...

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Maple Syrup ... my heart just skipped a beat!

Posted by Robin Abel on

I'll blame the years I spent as a child in Canada for my extreme obsession for real maple syrup.  Other than dark chocolate, there really aren't too many things that rate higher.  We go to maple festivals and have driven hours to see how it's made.  We even have a friend who tapped her own trees.  She didn't believe me when I offered to come help but we did a few times and it was great! Maple syrup is not hard to come by in PA.  The problem for me is mainly a distribution issue. So many of these farms are so small they...

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Spicy Tortilla Soup

Posted by Robin Abel on

When you order products for a store, you probably don't taste every single one.  Or, when I ordered products for Penn Pantry, I didn't test everything that was going to get stocked.  Some products I simply saw on the shelves of other stores or found online and couldn't buy every product to sample (I really appreciated companies sending samples but that's another blog story adventure).  My hope was that they were all fantastic but I really didn't know. I found this soup mix product called Evelyn's Elegant Edibles and thought it would be a great fit for the store.  When I called and talked with Evelyn,...

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Summer Adventures

Posted by Robin Abel on

School's out for summer!!  We are loving sleeping in, not making lunches, never thinking of homework, or dealing with girl drama.  But like any good mom, we're still learning (or I have stuff to do and the kids are coming with me).  Our local honey is just flying off the shelves so off to Slippery Rock we go to pick up more and see where honey comes from. We stock local honey from Always Summer Herbs.  They have both honey and honey bees which is super cool.  They sell queen bees to local beee keepers and then buy back the raw and unfiltered honey.  AlwaysSummerHerbs participates with...

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