Young Cultivators Merit Badge: Grow Forth, Beginner Level

The adorable, always humorous MBA Jane is my way of honoring our Sisterhood Merit Badge program, now with 7,130 dues-paying members who have earned an amazing number of merit badges so far—10,150 total! Take it away, MBA Jane!!! ~MaryJane 

Wondering who I am? I’m Merit Badge Awardee Jane (MBA Jane for short). In my former life

For this week’s Garden Gate/Grow Forth Beginner Level Young Cultivator Merit Badge, I kidnapped borrowed Piper from next door and we sat down with a basket of applesauce muffins to make a list of five local eateries that make her life easier and more fun.

Turns out, ever since the Spaghetti in Her Hair Episode of 2011, Piper’s mom doesn’t frequent restaurants much these days.

Can’t imagine why …

Anyway, despite my reassurances that there is not a big poster of Piper’s face with a slash through it on every door in town, Mom decided not to come on our little Tour of Delight (as we called it).

An excuse to wander downtown and sample wares? Why, yes, please! The two of us set off with stars in our eyes and a rumbling in our tummies.

postcard, Boston Public Library via Wikimedia Commons

We ducked into a delicatessen, where Piper was shocked and awed to find she actually enjoyed a good sauerkraut; a cookie bakery that was giving out samples of mini snickerdoodles; an organic smoothie shop where we shared a mango and pineapple concoction that was quite delish; a diner that specialized in hand-cut French fries with a special and secret sauce; and a coffee bar that served up a spicy and thick hot chocolate that nearly made me swear off coffee, it was so good.

I confess, it had been a while for me as far as eating out goes. I had gotten so into growing and cooking my own grub, I’d forgotten the tiny luxury of a sandwich made by someone else, and the feeling of satisfaction I get when I know my money has gone to a local business.

I was fairly sick with remorse over my lack of attention to my town’s eateries, so I bought a dozen more snickerdoodles to calm my fretful heart. (Yup. Totally did the trick. But just in case the icky feeling came back, I purchased another basket of French fries.)

Then, our consciences abated, we made another list. This time it was for ideas for our own, imaginary food business. Well, imaginary as of right now anyway … but you never know.

Piper and Jane’s Business Ideas (Food Edition)

  • Totally Tacos: Hey, they’re not just for Tuesdays anymore!
  • Little Miss Muffins: 24-hour muffin shop (how many times do you crave a peach muffin at 2 a.m., canIgetanamen?)
  • Donut Forget the Sprinkles: Get it? Donut? Do Not? Ha!
  • Piper’s Pickles: homegrown right from the cuke!
  • Salad Toppers: everything you wanted to put in a salad but were afraid to ask
  • Save the Grape: (evidently, Piper has a hatred of raisins and wants to eliminate them from Planet Earth)
  • Scones R Us
  • Ice Creamery: an ice cream shop where Piper refuses to put nuts in ice cream no matter how many customers want them

We eliminated a couple right off the bat (the grape rebellion will have to wait) and settled on Piper’s Pickles. Who wouldn’t want to buy a jar of homegrown pickles from a cute little stand, manned by a whippersnapper with a knack for pickling?

Now, we just wait patiently for summer …

  1. Winnie Nielsen says:

    You are right. The key with kids is to get them to at least try different foods. Having raised one very picky girl, I can attest that getting them to even agree to try something they have never eaten is a hill that runs straight upwards. Lesson I learned? Tincture of time has made great improvements with increasing food diversity interests. Nothing I did helped, but patience and time has fixed the issue. Blessed time!

  2. Karlyne says:

    I love the business ideas! My grandkidlets are stuck on their Buckin’ Bakery idea, but they keep thinking of other cool ideas to add to it. I’m thinking the pickles will be a hit idea with them, too!

  3. Krista says:

    Those are the cutest business ideas ever! Piper is just like me! I’m not a fan of nuts and I don’t like raisins. I would definitely invest and support her little businesses. This would be a fun merit badge to share with the young ones.

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