Friday, July 31, 2009

The Midland

We have a name!!!

We have officially decided on "The Midland Cafe" as our name.

I think it is good for a variety of reasons:

  • It's flexible enough to stay with us if we eventually expand into a full restaurant.
  • It's got a connection to our town, without being too cheesy.
  • The domain name was available, so we went ahead and reserved it.
  • It lends itself to a really cute logo, which, in turn, will lead to fun marketing merchandise (hats, aprons, t-shirts, mugs).
I'm so excited! What do y'all think?!?

PS : If any of you graphic design types out there want to try you hand at a logo for fun, then go for it! I'm envisioning some sort of logo involving a train, sort of coming at you from a distance, and "The Midland Cafe" to the side or underneath.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Hi, Friends

It's Friday night again, and the house smells amazing!!!

I have to share something with you tonight: it's been a strange day.

Today, I got a phone call from my husband, who had gotten a phone call from X, who had gotten a phone call from Y, who had gotten a phone call from Z . . . who was a prominent figure in the legal world here in North Georgia and who had an opportunity that he wanted me to apply for.  

For the record, this opportunity would be very similar to what I'm currently doing, which I actually really enjoy.  And it would be on the local level, which would be even better!

So, dear friends.  It appears that I have a big decision to make.  At the moment, with the yeasty smell in the air striking my nose and going straight to my head, it feels like an easy decision.  But it's an important decision nonetheless. 

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Menu Planning

So . . . dear readers, dear eaters, dear friends . . . if you were a resident of my tiny North Georgia town, and you were getting a gourmet sandwich at my new café. . .

What'll ya have?

I'm just finishing up a draft of our menu this week. I've got some good ideas (how about turkey with lite herbed mayo and swiss on whole wheat with lettuce and tomato?) but I wanted to throw this out there - what sandwiches would you like to see on the menu?

Here are the rules - you have to START with these ingredients!

Turkey, ham, roast beef

White bread, wheat bread, and possibly a rye or sourdough

American cheese, swiss cheese, and perhaps a third? Cheddar?

What are your favorite sandwiches with these as your base ingredients?

Leave me a comment to let me know!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Still Awake

It's after midnight, and I've just now finished baking my cinnamon rolls and sticky buns.  My loaves of buttermilk white bread have just gone into the oven, and I'm still awake.

On these pre-farmers-market evenings, when I have to tell my friends I can't socialize, I must go home to bake bread - everyone keeps telling me, 'This is how it's going to be!' 'Get used to it!' 'These are going to be your hours!'

I know that my new career is going to involve very hard work, very long hours, and a lot more physical work than I do right now.  I'm ready for the challenge.  

But doing my new job AND my old job at the same time?  Well, it pretty much sucks.   I said goodbye to my friends and their bottle of wine tonight, their light gossip, their heart-warming laughs.  My husband is tucked in and fast asleep. Even my two dogs are passed out beneath my feet as I type.  And here I am.  Still awake.

But you know what?  Those moments when I'm drizzling my icing over the pans of cinnamon rolls - the satisfaction of feeling the perfect texture of white dough going into a greased pan - the beauty of the toasted nuts on the sticky buns as I turn them out of their pans and reveal their gooey goodness - it makes me smile.  It makes my heart jump.  It makes me feel . . . alive, alert, awake.

So I'm still awake.  Smelling the scent of warm white bread wafting from the oven, feeling the tingle in my nose of the hint of cinnamon that laces the air in the house, dreaming of my new life and making it happen here, now, past midnight.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


I've reach the 30-day mark at my current job. It's a sad moment as well as an exciting moment. Just one month from now, I will be diving head first into my new career. How do I feel? I really don't know. I keep trying to keep a finger on my pulse, a tab on my feelings, a monitor on my thoughts - but really, it's just a messy jumble. I think I need a mood ring or a magic eight ball to tell me what I feel, what the next month holds.

Right now, I'm sitting here listening to Corey Smith's song "I'm in Love with a Memory" as I type this, and it's really speaking to me. It rings so true. I look back now over the past 5 years of my life, and I think of how much I've enjoyed the law, enjoyed school, studying, lunch with coworkers, writing for the judge, sitting in on exciting trials, and whatnot.

It's easy to look back now and think that this life has been rosy and wonderful. It's easy to doubt my decision to make such a drastic change, to take such a monumental risk. It's easy to think about how much more stable and sure my life would be if I were following the handbook of life that my parents keep pointing me towards.

But guess what: an easy life is a boring one, an easy life is a snooze, an easy life is not what I want.

Plus, between all those wonderful parts of the past five years, there were also struggles with insomnia, bouts of depression, instances of intense disillusionment, major disappointments, unkind people, unkind words, stress that wreaked havoc on my body and my health, and an overall feeling of dissatisfaction with my life and my future.

So maybe I shouldn't be in love with a memory. I have to keep looking forward, no glances in the rearview. Onward and upward and outward I go.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Label Me

Not only am I blessed to have some extremely encouraging, supportive, and enthusiastic friends, but I also have some pretty flippin' talented ones, too. My friend Mrs. Southern Belle is all of these things - and she created a fun Vintage Victuals logo that I've started using for my start-up bread business. I got my act together for the farmers market this weekend by printing up labels for all of my breads. How cute are these!?

Most people don't like being labeled, but in this case I'm glad to be labeled. Mrs. Southern Belle, you can label me any day.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

The Name Game

So, dear eaters, we're still trying conjure up a name for our little endeavor. 

Here are the top contenders.

1) The Red Clay Cafe - it's a nice Georgia theme, has an earthy feel to it, and lends itself well to a neat logo with marketing potential. If you've never been to Georgia, here is a photo of what our red clay looks like:

photo from jim270

2) The Good Life - which comes from the album and song title from one of our favorite local musicians, Corey Smith. This would also make for some fun promotional/marketing items, neat t-shirts and mugs, etc.

photo from

3) The Midland - our little town is home to a historic railroad line called the Gainesville Midland. I like the ideal of the railroad theme, and I'm also fond of making a connection with the history of our town. Here is a photo of the train from the early 1900s.

photo from the Gainesville Midland RR webpage

For practical purposes, we've given ourselves a deadline of Friday to finish our brainstorming and to officially select a name.

Thoughts? Ideas? Opinions?