narrated by: Paloma
I’m still helping my Mom with catering jobs when she asks. It’s good money for me, and has really helped me save up for my own bakery. A nice perk is bringing the fancy leftovers to Bobbi’s for our weekly horror night festivities.
We went on our first date four years ago, and he still gets up to greet me when I get in.
While we aren’t engaged, I decided that I wanted him to be my business partner for the new bakery. Thankfully he didn’t reject my offer. He didn’t even laugh when I told him I wanted to call it ‘Love + Flour’ which he insisted was perfect for a sugary, sweet bakery like ours would be.
We started driving to many empty locations in search of the perfect one. It was highly discouraging. I had managed to save just enough to do some minor upgrades for an already built unit. It started to seem that we would need to wait and save more money in order to build, when Adam surprised me with a new find.
It needed more repairs then we had really planned for like an entire new staircase, and upstairs railing along the loft. But we both fell in love with the brick wall graffiti in the back. Plus the location was perfect, right in the heart of the downtown tourist district.
Adam offered to pull out a loan to help cover the unexpected hiccups, and with that we made our offer.
A tiresome amount of repairs followed. We depended on my family for lending a hand with all the painting and even with building a new railing. When we first began, we had no idea the amount of work that would be required, which was a good thing. We might have decided to just wait until we could build new instead of renovating, and I’m really glad we didn’t.
As we got closer to opening day, we were both exhausted. We were excited and totally horrified with nerves to open, but mostly, we just wanted a vacation. To stay in bed until noon, and shirk all responsibilities was what we yearned for.
We never got home until late at night, as we both kept our jobs. I even began to doubt that Adam truly loved me, and perhaps was only with me all these years for a piece of the bakery. Which has only ever been hypothetical before, and when I’m fully rested, I know that it’s ludicrous. But at night, I can’t always help myself from feeling insecure.
Adam always seems surprised by my fears, and assures me that he loves me.
I appreciate that he can be tender towards me when I’m feeling anxious. I don’t think I ever felt these insecurities before Oliver broke up with me, I’d been so certain of us back then, that I feel horribly foolish looking back.
The time came that we both had to alert our bosses of our new venture. Though we both decided we’d stay on part-time if our bosses allowed us. Businesses seemed notorious for failing in the first year, and a reliable income seemed like the wisest solution. It meant that Love + Flour would have limited hours, but perhaps that would make us more sought-after.
I felt like I could vomit when it came time to tell Ginny. I’d been dreaming of quitting Java Planet for years, but now that I was hoping to cut hours, and eventually ties, I felt very nostaligic for all the late nights I’d spent there with Daniel, Meme, and Bobbi.
I reminded myself that nothing was quite the same anymore. Meme had been replaced by Ginny’s horrible daughter, Gemma. Meme and Daniel had married and were trying to start a family, which was always more information than I was interested in hearing.
Bobbi hasn’t quit, yet. But one day she would, and the bakery was my future. Ginny didn’t exactly take it well. The cheesecakes were my recipe, and I was taking them with me. I offered to continue to bake the plain cheesecake for her as long as I could continue to work part-time, and she reluctantly agreed.
In the end, she told me she was happy for me, and wished me good luck. But mostly she was relieved I wasn’t outright quitting. While I felt relief to know that I’d have at least twenty hours a week and enough income to pay for rent.
My sister, Linnea came down from EU to lend a hand on opening day. We were keeping our operation small, and didn’t want to stress our budget with hiring help until we had enough coming in to cover the extra expense.
She thought I was a little crazy with all my instruction, considering she was just helping to answer any questions. But I wanted her to be knowledgeable as possible so she could actually answer questions.
Mom and Gideon came in with Dahlia to wish us luck, and to help us look busy as well. She thought that people in the bakery would draw more people in. I hadn’t thought of it, but really felt it was a good idea once she said it.
Adam is always good to Dahlia, who feels more like a distant cousin than a sister. Our lives are such polar opposites that it is hard to recognize her as my sister. Even Linnea, with her obtaining a college education is more than I ever had.
Gideon and Adam get along well too. Not to mention my sister, Linnea wants to steal him from me for herself. Sometimes it would seem that my entire family prefer Adam over myself, said with humor of course. He is a pretty likable guy, and I’m rather fond of him myself.
Dahlia wanted her dollar to be the first one we put up on the wall, so she bought a macaron from Adam. He’s having a rough time learning the ropes of the cash register. He’s been a cook at Hazel’s diner, and while I do have experience with the check-out process, I’m the expert behind the baked goods.
A newspaper reviewer came in to do a human interest piece on us, and would be back for a follow-up. I’ve dealt with her in the past at Java Planet, but I was a wild bunch of nerves now that it was my business.
We had a great photo in the paper, that my Mom cut out for us to keep.
When she came back, she seemed like it would be a bad report.
I wound up sneaking away into the bathroom to have a panic attack. Adam and Linnea thankfully held it down while I was away. I felt terrible for leaving, but bad press could ruin us before we really got on our feet.
In the end, she wrote a good review. I don’t know if it was some type of journalism ploy or what, but she had me really going.
Elias and Julia both came out to the grand opening. Elias was just a kid when I was dating Oliver, and Julia just a bit older. I barely knew her older sister Hadley, so it meant a lot that they thought to come out at all.
Elias insisted that Millwood-folk had to stick together, and I appreciated that sentiment.
Some customers were just impossible, Adam told me afterwards to not let it get to me. Easier said than done. I don’t know why the redhead came in just to complain that my goods looked too good, and were too fattening. It’s a bakery, not a salad bar.
I was utterly exhausted afterward, but in a good way. It felt surreal that I was locking the door of my very own bakery, and that it was actually happening. Back in high school, I thought that college was the thing I wanted most, and I would have surely been jealous of Linnea if I hadn’t realized that the bakery was my real dream.
Adam was a bit cheesy about the whole ‘dream’ bit, saying that he realized that I was his dream. Even if I dismiss him as being goofy, it does make me blush, I’m sure he sees through my nonchalance. We ordered pizza from a local place, and just camped at the back of the store.
I began to wonder if he was exceptionally tired, as he seemed really emotional, much the same as I had been leading up to the grand opening.
He went on about loving me, my family, thinking we were all beyond great. I was beginning to be concerned that he was rather delusional, when he knelt down. It was the last thought on my mind. Previously, it had been on my mind constantly, but not at this particular moment.
I didn’t even have to think it over, it was an instantaneous yes, I barely let him say the words, I was already nodding vigorously.
Our grand opening wound up being way more than I ever anticipated.
I tried to memorize every detail of the evening, the day, the moment. It seemed surreal that he had asked. I’d begun to fear that I wasn’t what anyone really wanted in a wife.
He insists that he just needed to prepare himself to be the best man he could be, before he tried to be my husband.
We spent the rest of the evening, snuggled up on the sofa, and talking about our future wedding plans. While neither of us really feel up to planning such a big event, with Love + Flour just opening, we are both very keyed up to be married.
Luckily, my Mom is a wedding/party planner, and I know she will be glad to lend a hearty hand.
Notes: FINALLY! I required that Adam would roll the engagement/wedding want, something to tell me he was serious! And he finally did. You can bet your bonnet that I had him propose asap! I cannot wait for this wedding, and I don’t think Paloma can ether. That girl has all the typical family wants, some have been locked before she even dated Adam, which was four years ago.
As far Adam preparing to be the best man he could be, he rolled a want for Couples Counseling and Parenting. So he really was doing some research before the marriage wants rolled in. I haven’t nailed down a season for Paloma to get married, Violet-Adele’s is this upcoming summer, so I don’t want to do then. Perhaps in the fall.
That redhead girl goes into ALL of my owned businesses, NEVER buys anything, and complains NONstop!!! She had a bit of a cameo here. I really want this grouchy girl to marry one of my playables, but she’s so darn disagreeable!
Thanks for reading!
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