Meet Jen

 
 
 

When I set out to turn this blog into a business, I had no idea what I was doing. (No, really!)

I mean, it looked cute because I had previously built a catering company that I branded myself and had handled not only that branding but branding in professional settings over the course of my career in sales and marketing.

But looking cute doesn't pay the bills - know what I mean?

What I did know was this: I wanted to create a new kind of business that allowed me to be all of who I was; a business that didn't make me turn off my home-brewed-kombucha, earth-loving-mom self at work, and didn't make me drop my intensely-driven-and-super-smart-business-woman self in order to stay in touch with my more go-with-the-flow, enjoy-the-moment side.

I needed all the parts of me to feel alive.

But that struggle is SO REAL!

Here's the thing:

I found that so, so, so many women have a similar struggle.

  • We feel compartmentalized - not only in our time, but also in our way of being in the world. We’re expected to work like dudes and mom like ladies…and then everyone around us wonders what’s wrong when we finally lose our damn minds from running on the hamster wheel of what we think we “should be”…like, WTF!?!

  • We're doing all the things, checking all the boxes, and rather than feeling full and joyful and blessed, we're feeling depleted and overworked and out of touch with everything that matters.

I believe that life is to be bravely embraced, fully lived, totally surrendered to, and beautifully experienced. I believe in living for the most important thing: love.

I fell in love with food when I was young. I’d sit at the counter and eat chips and salsa while my grandmother cooked holiday meals for our large family. Her role as family cook made her the center of her home, and I wanted, more than anything, to embody that role - to nurture my family through food, seductive aromas, and the warmth created by gathering together. 

I also fell in love with motherhood, homemaking, entertaining, and in college: writing. When I first had children, and was very poor, I learned to sew curtains, paint walls, and plan menus on a near-to-zero budget. I learned to laugh at the silly things (like when my kids decided to “cook” with cinnamon, leaving huge powdery brown streaks all over my very white kitchen) and how to move slowly enough to appreciate the little things (those tiny hands!). I learned about the power of women connecting with and supporting one another (I couldn’t have done it without my mommy-friends), and the hedonistic pleasure of expressing my heart through the written word.

Eventually, my love for the kitchen and for entertaining led me to open a catering company. I sourced produce and cheese from local farmers and creameries. I raised a whole heck of a lot of chickens in order to ensure a good supply of local eggs for my baked goods. I loved sending out delicious meals to eager diners. I loved setting tables, managing waitstaff, and creating beautiful plates. The hard work didn’t scare me. I never got bummed out about spending a sixteen hour day working my butt off. I was totally enamored.

After a few years of that, however, my kids were bummed out about all the long days I spent working. And my heart was aching to return to motherhood in a way that owning a catering company made impossible. I relocated to the Bay Area in search of a little more stability. While I was able to build my food career in really amazing ways, I also found myself feeling a total lack of balance - too much time commuting to work (like, an hour-and-a-half one way), too much time away from my home and my kids, and a tangible soreness in my heart from a lack of hands-on creativity. Plus, all that time spent working, commuting, and momming on a barely-good-enough level, left me zero time to connect with people in my new community. I was drained, unhappy, and exhausted.

I created Piper & Sloan as a way to provide the life I wanted for myself and my family while offering a really special experience for others. My values are totally interwoven into every aspect of what I do. Piper & Sloan is the culmination of all that I love: food, business, working with female founders, home, style, events & entertaining, making things by hand, visiting interesting places, and writing about things near and dear to me.

I picture Piper and Sloan as individual women, whose traits embody different aspects of my own personality: Piper, the cook, mother, and hippy-at-heart who’d rather spend a day dirtying her hands in a garden and cooking a meal with fresh ingredients than put on a dress and heels; Sloan, the smart, professional, driven woman who loves building business strategies, is always thinking big, and who loves helping others succeed at their dreams.

This is where those parts of me are able to find harmony and co-exist (it's the great success of fempreneurship - no longer having to divide your time or energy in a way that causes a sort of disjointed dissatisfaction).

I hope you love Piper & Sloan as much as I do, and that in it, you find a little piece of yourself; a piece of what makes being a woman (in all the fullness of the word) such a powerful and beautiful thing.

With Love,

Jen