First and second birthdays

I've sent out a lot of chocolate brownies this week. Receiving muffins and brownies in the post, as I've said before, were one of my inspirations for starting a gift-order service with Bee & Bear. I wasn't going to be the first to offer mail-order muffins, but I did feel there was a gap in the market for better packaging. I wanted something more traditional, more brown paper parcels tied up with string. And no cellophane. There's nothing worse than trying to shove metres and... metres of cellophane into the bin after unwrapping something. It fills it up, and then starts trying to escape. It's awful. It would have broken me by now. So I wanted something natural looking, biodegradable and easy to handle. Once I'd decided on brown cardboard boxes, I then had a mad five minutes during which I asked a company to quote for producing a bespoke box with wine-box style dividers. Not only were they going to cost about £2.50 each, I couldn't have fewer than 500... Short of putting all the children in one bedroom together and having a dedicated packaging room, it was never going to work. Happily I found a great company that produced boxes just the right size, and I could order whatever number I wanted. I ordered some shredded paper to keep the muffins apart. And then sold my soul and ordered some cellophane bags to individually wrap each muffin... I sent a box off to a friend for a test run, and they arrived unscathed, intact, and hadn't moved in the box. So, exactly a year ago today, I launched the gift-order service! I had two orders within 24 hours. Since then I have begun sending afternoon teas, lemon drizzle cake and Christmas puddings, as well as brownies. It's my favourite part of the business. I especially love writing the gift message, which is almost always marking a happy occasion.
We also celebrated the Bear's second birthday this weekend. It's a rare event these days when neither myself nor Grizzly Bear are working on a Sunday, so we shovelled everyone into the car and had a day out at Blackberry Farm. Here are some 12 day old piglets we found there!

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