My pie and I made it through security at the Atlanta airport and we now await the flight to Grand Rapids at gate B20. The fact I’m even traveling with a pie is evidence that a long-enjoyed family tradition has been fully resurrected. My entire extended family is grateful to Briana Carson and the talent, deliciousness and love she bakes into every CRAVE PIE.

Now it’s time to raise your tray tables and fasten your seatbelts. Here is the story told in every bite.

Grandma Jones, who was extraordinary in the kitchen, stopped cooking due to health reasons long before she passed away in 2010. With her declining health went the bountiful meals and love she served up every holiday. She would cook for many days to prepare the feast and it was always topped off with several homemade Butterscotch Cream Pies. Grandma served up holiday tradition like no other.

In 2000, my sister Karen created a cook book to tell my grandparent’s story and preserve all of Grandma’s amazing recipes. The cookbook was titled “Sup Weel” which is Scottish for “Eat Well.” And we sure did when Grandma was around!

My copy of the cookbook went up on my pantry shelf due to the fact I am domestically challenged. But then in 2014, I walked into CRAVE PIE STUDIO, met owner Briana Carson and learned of her joy in creating customized pies. Together we planned a fun surprise for my parents on their next visit to Atlanta. I could hardly wait to see my Dad’s face. He so savored his mom’s pies back in the day.

Briana borrowed Grandma’s cookbook and got to work. When the day arrived, my parents and I casually strolled by CRAVE PIE STUDIO in charming downtown Duluth. “Hey mom and dad – how about we grab a latte here?”

As we sipped our lattes, Briana quietly came over and served us unordered slices of Butterscotch Cream Pie and then she set Grandma’s cookbook on our table.

There are no words to describe the look of confounding confusion on my dad’s face. It took a few times of telling the story and explaining that I actually knew Briana for it all to sink in.

And then it was time…

The first bite…

Savory silence was required. We lost all of our words because none were adequate.

The first bite instantly transported me back to Grandma’s dining room table and all the comfort and security it represented.

The next bite took me back to the days of simpler times and simpler lives. As a busy adult, I still on occasion long for those leisurely meals at Grandma and Grandpa’s house.

Each bite added to the flood of memories filling my heart full to overflowing.

The entire experience wrapped me up in the coziness of Grandma’s memory.

On that autumn afternoon at CRAVE PIE STUDIO, a dormant tradition was resurrected. And the sweetest news of all is that Briana and her team have allowed my children to know the story tucked into each bite of Butterscotch Cream Pie!

My son Sean is such a fan that two full size pies are required when my mom and dad visit. My son hides his pie in the basement refrigerator and if he doesn’t finish it in two days after the upstairs pie is gone – my dad starts circling with his glass of milk. I play the role of referee.

Ordering CRAVE PIE (in all sizes) is now a requirement for all of our family visitors, trips and special occasions. On a recent visit, my dad said this: “tasting this Butterscotch Cream Pie makes me remember the goodness of my wonderful mother!” Personally, I didn’t think it was possible to improve on Grandma’s pie but CRAVE PIE crust takes Grandma’s pie to a whole new level. In the crust we trust and for my family it’s always butterscotch or bust!

Gotta run. It’s time for my pie and I to board [the flight home].

Thank you CRAVE PIE for allowing a long-held, treasured family tradition to take flight and soar into future generations.

InsPIEred to share this story,

Susan Conley