I’m maybe more proud of this year than practically any other. After my business partner in Commissary! dropped out in late November 2018, I spent 90% of 2019 understanding aspects of the businesses I’d never focused on before. Instead of developing flavors, menus, and dishes and training worker bees, I focused on finances and big picture planning. I’ve emerged from a year where I pushed out of my comfort zone (cooking, making) and learned difficult new skills the businesses needed. This year I got serious about taking care of my crew + our fiscal health in truly sustainable ways for the long term and it feels so good. I’ve learned so much. As a result, I’m currently knee-deep in planning some big expansion plans for these small businesses. It’s exciting and scary and I wouldn’t have it any other way. We’re also currently in the process of becoming a Certified Woman-Owned Business, which has been a wild experience. Lots happening, all of it fun and overwhelming, just like I like it.
Aaaaand I wrote a book. I’m so proud of it, too! It was a glorious experience.
A few goals for 2020 I’m working on:
- more affordable shipping options for chocolates
- completely phasing out plastic
- more beautiful packaging for chocolates
- an increased chocolate wholesale program
- an expanded menu at commissary
- expanded hours at commissary
- a no-waste grab-and-go takeaway expansion at commissary
- increased quality control all around, as always, as ever
Onward to crew highlights!
- Oh and for best-of round ups from previous years, see
Another amazing year @ Confectionery! Even with all the insanity going on outside of the shop in the real world, I get to escape it when I’m here. I’ve had so many highlights this year! Thank you to two of the best bosses anyone can ever have, thanks to my coworkers who handmake everything everyday, and thanks to our amazing customers, local, first timers and travelers. Oh and to the neighbor pups!
foil wrapped vulvas
English cream eggs
Lemon polenta cake (I’m salivating)
Strawberry Ice cream bars (imy summa freezer)
Passion fruit white chocolate macarons
Anatomical bleeping hearts
RAINBOW SLABS really?
Earl grey bars
The list goes on, and on.
I won’t forget my first independent holiday shift- I killed it! Visiting Maresa’s brand new bakery, wowzie; bragging to everyone that Lagusta wrote a book! Pst, and now a podcast… shhhh! Attending my first Woodstock Sanctuary Gala, and lighting the Menorah for the first time.
Cheers to another year of love, growth and friendship!
Another year flew by in our sweet little east village sugartown!
I joined the Commissary! crew a little late in the game in the middle of October, but these two & a half months have felt like the biggest part of my year. My start was entwined with changes abound and it’s without a doubt one of the best. The people I’ve met & worked with at Commissary! have provided an environment of love and support I can’t even begin to express the proper gratitude for. Navigating food world, learning all of the different chocolates, and discovering the magic of cambros are just a few of the lessons I carry with me into 2020. Comm has given me a sense of pride and fulfillment in my work and saying that I’m happy here would just not cut it.
ok so I definitely wrote a long emotional journal entry about how 2019 was the worst year of my adult life and how the chocolate shop was one of the few areas of my life that was sound and comfy. but it was a little mopey and I don’t like that very much so instead i’m going to reflect on the times I felt the happiest at work this year, because of all my wonderful co workers! (In no particular order)
- every single time we ordered food. especially when I called karma road from my cell phone and they had to call me back but they just called the chocolate shop directly because they had figured out that we place a giant order nearly every sunday
- when Kate made me a giant baby pink felt silica gel packet. because that’s SO weird and now it’s on my fridge.
- dani’s gift to me for secret snowflake this year!! what! it was amazing!
- going bowling with everyone to celebrate Alexis! (ps we miss u)
- every hug from sam. if you know you know. sam gives the best hugs.
- THE MEME PAGE! this was technically started in 2018. But wasn’t that the best? that was so fun y’all are so funny and I already knew that but that page made it so real.
- when deirdre went full aquarius on me and told me that if she could know anything about an alien race she would want to know if they interacted with Fibonacci’s sequence, or if they had a different pattern?
- when lagusta called air pods air buds. like the golden retriever. these things write themselves.
- building a milk cloud with rachel. the results of this sit on the commissary instagram and confused everyone.
- when my mom became our accountant! this is just wholesome. except I was on the phone with her the other day and she hung up on me bc rachel was on the other line </3
- teaching mike the thing where someone knuckle bumps you and you say “turkey” and flatten your hand. he was totally blown away. I mean I get it though.
- when me and jenn discovered the song association game and probably initiated some of our new work friends into the energy of the shop in a really weird way. nothing says icebreaker like you have ten seconds to sing a song that says sponge in it.
- the other day I had to leave the shop because a yorkie came in and shelly didn’t even ask she just hugged me when I started crying. I miss my dog! I love shelly a lot.
- one day vickie bought a blueberry pie and offered to share it so on a summer evening me vickie jenn and lagusta sat outside and ate blueberry pie with strawberry ice cream. xoli was sitting on my lap and it was so nice that day.
- every funny morning meeting quip, every time I felt comfortable expressing something I can’t in any other space, every group hug, or hover hug, every dog (that we definitely don’t allow in the shop don’t worry), and everything else along the way.
despite anything outside of work, I had a really fulfilling, happy, and supportive year working with all of you. I’m so excited for the future of LL and I’m so grateful to be here.
I have worked in the night of the chocolate shop for over a year now, making croissants for the cafe and the city shop. I have cherished every milestone: the slow shift from concentrating-very-hard-still-fucking-up to seamlessly-working-the-dough-while-holding-a-conversation, memorizing the dough recipe and the butter recipe, shaving half an hour off of the total process time by changing just a couple of steps around…it’s all felt special and well-earned. Every night when I open the door to the dark shop, I stop and breathe in the good smells, acknowledge that good people have been doing good work in this space all day, and just feel grateful to be invited. I have two jobs, I work long days and nights, sometimes I am tired and it’s hard to leave my house. But when I get to work, I wake up. Nothing is exhausting, everything is satisfying, and with every task my brain smooths out a little. The dough unfurls, I do the same. I measure, mix, roll and fold, cut and shape, wash, clean, organize. My brain is along for the ride, breaks to make lovely observations, realizations born from total focus. In between carefully timed steps, I scribble thoughts from my clean brain onto scraps of paper— ideas and love thoughts and ways to be better. I walk home, body-tired, mind-kindled. I have done something that I feel is worthwhile. Sometimes the sun is rising and if it’s warm weather maybe a fat robin is walking alongside me, nervous and garbling. I like to be with the world in this way.
A full calendar year. Lots of boxes going out to lots of beautiful people and places. Friendships growing stronger. Surprises developing into magical realities. 2019 was quite a year. 2020 will be even better.
I usually start off every one of these posts with something like “WOW THAT WAS A DOOZIE” but this has been one of the best, most transformative years I’ve had at the shop and in my life! This year brought a lot of new faces and friendships, and for that I’m forever thankful. I always enjoy the buzz and excitement of holiday season, and this year our efficiency was *so close to 100%* that I enjoyed it more than ever. While this was a great year, I have to admit I’m so glad 2017 is finally coming to a close so we can just get on with 2018 already, right? [ed note: this is a joke to me because i can’t seem to remember what year it is. roasted!! — lagusta]
if the year was a playlist it would start with “honey” by robyn and end with the same. in like a lion, out like the same lion, just as soft, just as strong. the only lambs here are us. i’ve written so many year re-caps and they’re mostly all the same: i love this work, i love these people, no one can take that away from me, and there’s the beauty. this world we’ve cobbled together, together, it’s as sweet as we make it, it’s as warm as we want. in 2019 we solved problems, we cooked caramels, we shipped boxes, we held hands. often my cheeks burned red, sometimes frustration, other times elation. that’s how it goes and there are a million points between every start and finish, but if i have to put words to it, i’ll just say: we keep turning sugar into different forms of itself, and we’re not much different. ❤
wow hi OK 2019 was one of the worst and best years of my life! I graduated college, moved into a beautiful new apartment, broke up with the same person TWICE, and became a manager (amongst tons of other bad and good things). Its funny to think all of this was happening while our little LLverse just kept going and thriving. No matter what I am going through, I always know I can come into work the next day ready for new challenges and a shit ton of laughs (and misandry, never forget the misandry)! I can’t believe I get to go to work with all of my favorite people every single day and for that I am so grateful. Here’s to 2020 being WAY better than 2019 and lets vote Trump out of office!