Mercy House, meet Tiny House

Chris and I took six apple pies and our beloved Wagon House to the folks at Mercy House for their weekly potluck dinner and meeting. At least 25 people climbed in and out of the Wagon House – not all at the same time of course! The pies were devoured, along with some very tasty fried chicken brought by other volunteers. We’ve been asked to bring the Wagon House back in two weeks as part of a seminar on the Tiny House phenomenon, and we’ll be there with bells on!


Just in case you’re not following us on twitter or instagram, here’s our financial report for today. We spent just under $45 on ingredients to bring pies to Mercy House, $30 on fuel for the truck to get to Mercy House, and $8 on emergency food for ourselves. We want all of our fans and donors to know exactly where the money goes. We want everyone to know that we take your donations very very seriously – they are to be used to further the pie mission as much as possible, and to be used on us only when absolutely necessary. Someday, it will be different. Someday, we will have steady funding and we will pay ourselves. But that day is not today.


Mercy House is a beautiful shade of purple

Mercy House is a beautiful shade of purple

The Wagon House enjoying some greenery

The Wagon House enjoying some greenery

Buffet table with our pies on the end

Buffet table with our pies on the end

Good news!

First item of good news – Chris was hired by Radio Shack! He’s now working part time, with the possibility of full time work after we get back from our wedding trip at the beginning of October. I’m still applying for work, but my search is less urgent now, and we both feel I can continue to work on Pie It Forward as my main focus.


Second item of good news – we’re going to be donating pies to Mercy House’s Sunday dinner. We’ve gone two weeks in a row now, and we were so astounded by what we’ve seen. It’s a true pot luck, with a local church providing the bulk of the meal and other contributions arriving as people see fit. This is what we had always envisioned when we were giving away pie on the sidewalk – we always asked people to bring a dish to pass, but it so rarely happened. There is a true sense of community there, and we hope to be a part of it.


I need to shake the virtual tip jar in your direction, pie fans. Chris won’t get his first paycheck from Radio Shack for two weeks, and the bulk of that money will be going towards our rent and food needs. Can you help us get the supplies we need to bring pie to Mercy House? If 10 people donated $5 we’d be able to buy enough apples, butter, crisco, and brown sugar to make at least 6 pies. Thank you, pie fans!


And please read more about Mercy House

Report from Blue Frog Books Event

That was the most fun we’ve had at an event in a LONG time! We were joined by local authors Linda Nicholas and Judy Powers, who co-authored the book “The Fairy Box,” a young adult novel featuring the fairy doors of Ann Arbor. We were joined by a small crowd who came to hear a live book reading and sample our home made apple pies. We shared a few of our own stories from the road trip, and made a few new friends, including local author Jeffrey Ruth and his lovely wife Victoria, who invited us to make pies in their home!


And of course none of this would have been possible without Rob, self described window washer and blame taker. We met Rob weeks ago and he helped coordinate the whole event via email. We had a phenomenal time, and we’re hoping to see Rob again at upcoming events in the area.  If you’re in the Howell area, we highly recommend Blue Frog Books!


And check out “The Fairy Box” book too!



Church News

We got a disappointing phone call this morning from our contact at Calvary Lutheran in Flint. They’ve received an offer from an established church that wants to expand and strengthen their outreach into Calvary Lutheran’s neighborhood, so they’re going to most likely accept the offer from the existing church. Our contact told us that she lobbied for us but that more conservative voices prevailed. She wished us the best of luck and I thanked her for all the time she spent with us.


Logically, I can understand their decision, but I’m still crushed. When we toured the church two months ago, it took a lot of will power for me not to twirl through the hallways like Cinderella. My imagination was working over-time. I could see all the possibilities spread out in front of me. Now those dreams are back on the shelf, waiting.


We’re not stopping now, of course. We’ve still got our 501c3 application to turn in. We’ve got the event in Howell this Saturday. We’ll keep trucking along. But we wanted that kitchen and that fellowship hall so badly. We want our own pie cafe so we can start feeding large groups of people. Although we know in our minds that we’ve been doing lots of behind-the-scenes work, it still feels like we’ve been slacking. I miss the interaction of handing a slice of pie to a real, live human being.


If anyone out there happens to know of a restaurant-ready piece of property that’s looking for new occupants in Michigan, please email us!

Upcoming Events!

Not strictly pie related, but Sunday, August 17th, I will be at the Ypsilanti Heritage Festival, offering face painting for tips.


On Saturday August 23rd, we will be giving away free apple pie at Blue Frog Books in Howell, Michigan, at 3 pm. Donations are welcome, as our next big need is to submit our 501c3 application, which costs $850 – yikes!


And again, not strictly pie related, but on September 27th, after over a year of engagement and 3 years together, Chris and I will be getting married! There will be a marked decline in our online pie activity leading up to the wedding, but there will still be plenty of pie work going on behind the scenes.


New friends and old friends

After posting our disappointing news earlier, my friend Gordon told me to bring our excess pies to Stone School Road House, a local resource center organized and operated by members of the Ann Arbor/Ypsi homeless community. Once there, Chris and I were blown away by the warm welcome we got, as well as the tour. We saw many of our old pie regulars from Liberty Plaza, and folks I recognized from my days at the shelter. We exchanged contact information with a few people, and got a lead on another space in Ann Arbor where we might be able to cook and serve meals in the future.


We’re still not sure where we’re going to get funding from, but we know we want to work with this amazing community!


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