Thursday, January 24, 2013

The Way To Someone's Heart...

Most adults could finish that proverb.  Actually it's "The way to a man's heart is through his stomach" but for Valentine's Day we won't discriminate.

We have plenty of love to go around.
Preparations are under way:  pretty packaging, ribbon, bows, hearts and more hearts.

Heart cookies, heart cakes, heart pies. Pot pies in heart-shaped red pans and pans of delicious Italian entrees with red sauce (amore!).

Red wine, white wine, and no whining from the kids because we've thought of them, too.  Why not wake them up with our homemade pop-tarts?  The slightly crisp edges and crumbly crust give way to fillings that we've been testing for a couple of weeks now.  Apple-cinnamon, brown sugar and pecan, s'mores, just to name a few.  Need something a little more adult for your sweetie pie?  Try our fruit and nut granola over honey-flavored Greek yogurt.  It's a delicious and healthy way to start your loved one's day.  Great as a snack.

  How about heart-shaped, chocolate covered marshmallow lollipops? 

Or a pink box filled with chocolate peanut butter brownies?  Not a chocolate lover?  A pink box with raspberry filled butter cookies.  Pick up a romantic dinner for two.  Or for the whole family.  Everything is made with love.  From us to you.  From you to them.

Monday, January 7, 2013


Does anybody really enjoy making and trying to keep New Year's resolutions?

Some years it's the same old ones I've made before. Some years I'm more optimistic and energetic than other years, but the truth is I rarely get through January before I forget what I've resolved to do. Then I rack my brain, recall what it is, and give it another go.
It makes me feel good to at least try.
I think the key is to strive for improvement. Not a very deep thought, I know, but surely it's what keeps us going. A yearly reminder of the power of positive thinking. A mental exercise program. Something to talk about with strangers at holiday parties.
Everyone at Tres Market shared their resolutions with each other. They range from being on time to getting their spouse here from a foreign country. I wish them all luck. Me personally? I resolve not to eat so many chocolate chips and I will quit procrastinating.
I also resolve to send more pictures from the kitchen. Starting now. Happy New Year to all. Thank you for an excellent 2012. We wish you an even better 2013.

Harley hasn't seen his beautiful wife in a year. He hopes to have her here soon!

John's not only going to try a bunch of new recipes we've been talking about, but he's going to work on getting up from this push-up. (We all could use a little more exercise in 2013.)

Jules will have her whole life in order before the year is out. (She is young.)
Jeannine vows to get more sleep so she'll look younger(?).

Charlie is our Protein Specialist. He wants to do less parenting (ha!) and drink more wine. (I think he means free wine at Tres Market.)

Will works for our linen service. His goal is not to write 2012 on checks (we're going to get him a debit card). He says that's enough because he "doesn't want to dream too big or have any far-fetched goals."

Finally, our latest construction is finished. The new goal is to fill the tables with customers enjoying our food, wine, and Texas craft beer!

Friday, December 21, 2012


We're taking a little break out of our crazy hectic day for a little celebration of something really big.

Seems our head chef, Harley, passed his citizenship test last week and was sworn in on Wednesday.
He got out of bed, went downtown, raised his right hand, and BAM (as Harley often says)-done. Easy right?
Maybe not quite so easy.

See it all started years ago when his mom and his aunt left Nicaragua to make a better life for their kids. Harley's mom was a single mother who risked leaving her children in the old country long enough to scrape together enough money to bring her family to America. She lived frugally and worked hard. These lessons weren't wasted on her son.

Even though he likes to complain- all kids do-he works his tail off. I know I can depend on him to follow directions. It really bothers him when he makes the rare mistake. So much so that he's never makes the same one twice. He's a good friend to his co-workers, yet when it's time to step up and take charge I know the kitchen is in good hands. When Jeannine asks him to give up his Saturdays throughout the holiday season he unhesitatingly says yes. He's never late. He's polite to every customer. He cleans up after himself. He rarely asks for time off but when he does, he's considerate enough to give us plenty of notice. He can also answer more questions about the U.S. Government than 80% of our employees.

He's really a good kid. I'd say our country is lucky to have him. And Tres Market? Well, we're just happy to have him. Congratulations Harley.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Big Plans

December's here and even though we all had the luxury of an extra week between Thanksgiving and Christmas I feel I've somehow squandered the time and now I'm frantic to turn the calendar back to November.  I'd make all kinds of empty promises if I could just go back and appreciate the gift of extra time.
Surely we all feel that way.
 Every year it's the same stupid optimism:
- Have all the Christmas shopping finished by November 1.
-Pull out Christmas decorations early and weed out old stuff that we don't use... Replace  with new good stuff.
-Start holiday cooking early.  Make homemade goodies for all our friends.    This'll be fun.
You start feeling so organized (why haven't I done this every year?) and a
false calm sets in.  One quick email blast and you've invited a hundred of your closest friends over for a casual (you're thinking Martha Stewart) Christmas party.
Optimism turns to realism.  Pessimism coming on strong.
Take a deep breath.  Pick up the phone.  Call us.
We can help.
 With the food.
  We  have our own ugly old decorations to take care of.
Appetizers to desserts and party favors are made daily here at Tres Market.  

Everything can be transferred to your serving pieces.  

It's easy- we'll tell you how to do it-and VOILA' - food's done and it's homemade... Just not by you.

Oh, did you hear we're now carrying wine and Texas craft beers?  One stop shopping.
Now you can enjoy your party and your guests and the compliments you're sure to receive.

Next year you'll really get organized.
Don't worry, we'll still be here.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Growing Pains

We're now fully into our latest construction project.  It's our fifth one in eleven years and once more its behind schedule and over budget.  Not only that, but it's running into our holiday season which is always unbelievably hectic and we're only picking up about 350 square feet.  Into which we need to squeeze 1000 feet of ideas.
Moan, groan, whine.  Okay, enough of that.

The truth is,  I love a good construction project.  The smell of cut lumber and wet paint make my heart go pitter- patter.
 Jeannine on the other hand, is the exact opposite.  As soon as she smells cut lumber and paint her disposition takes a nose dive.  Our typical conversation goes like this:
Jeannine:  Morning  everybody.  Did everyone have a good evening?  (Turns head hard left)
Oh my God.  What a mess!  Julie, I can't stand it.  When are they gonna be done?  Have you asked them yet?  Are we adding more freezers?  Can we add another refrigerator?
Me:  Sure, I just need to add some more electrical.
Jeannine:  Can we have some pretty lights?   I'd really like some pretty lights.  And are you sure we're going to have enough storage?  We really need more storage space.
Me:  Fine.  I'll have them move that wall out a couple feet.  How's that?
Jeannine:  Perfect.  I hope you're having cushions made for the bench.  I really think cushions will make it more comfortable.  And pretty.  Can we have pretty?  I'd really like prettier.
Me:  Already on it.
Jeannine:  Good.  (She sits at computer)
10:00 a.m.
(She gets up from computer, looks hard right)
Jeannine:  Oh my God!  What a mess.  Julie, I can't stand it.  When are they gonna be done?

That's a fairly accurate depiction of the two of us but sometimes the scenario changes and our roles are reversed.  When I'm exhausted or stressed, Jeannine will step in and become the strong one for a while.  Then we trade again.  It's nice to know someone's got your back.
I'm thankful for her...I think she's thankful for me...we're both thankful for, not only our customers who support us, but also for our employees who are like family members (the kind you like).
We truly love being able to provide a service that helps families spend time together and encourages friends to entertain with ease.  When our construction is finished, we'll love it even more!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Thanksgiving Decor

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, Pinterest has been a best friend full of decor ideas for Thursday! Here are some great, simple, and quick decoration finds for your Thanksgiving meal!

For more Pinterest Thanksgiving finds follow our Thanksgiving board!

We wish you a happy and wonderful Thanksgiving day!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Morning Routines at Tres Market

The older I get, the more I believe that morning routines can set the tone for a person's day.  Does anyone really enjoy waking up late and starting the next 24 hours trying to make up time?

There's a lot to be said for cultures in which the early morning is set aside for meditation or prayer or just quiet time when you gather your thoughts and mentally get your day in order.
Of course that's not possible for everyone.  All families surely go through that phase when, day after day, you literally dump children out of the carpool in front of school.  As you drive off you catch a glimpse of their stunned little faces in your rear view mirror.  You're wondering if they'll figure out they have to turn around and walk into the building as another parent honks at you and gives you a dirty look cause its her turn to dump her stunned kid.  Or you run out the front door in your ugly pajamas begging the bus driver to wait one more second because you found your forgetful child's math book sitting under the cereal box he was reading while he ate breakfast.  As you hand it to the kind bus driver, a gluey glob of wet "fortified deliciousness"  finds its way into driver's hand, along with the book.  You mutter sorry and remind yourself to pick up a little Christmas gift for said driver. Sheepishly making your way back up the driveway you realize your pajamas are actually quite see-thru in natural light.

But life gets easier.  So do mornings.  They've become my favorite time of day.  I think a person's senses are more fine-tuned early in the day.  And the combination of light and smell never fails to escalate my mood when I get to the store early.

Our first shift starts at about 7:00-7:15a.m.  That's when the daily baking starts.
Parker House, whole wheat, and cinnamon rolls that were prepped the night before,  have been proofing overnight in the walk in cooler.  Samantha, part of our high school internship program, is in charge of not only baking and buttering them, but determining how many cookies to make.   No matter how many she does, it's never enough - we always run out.  Clever customers, usually men, suggest we bake more (as if that thought never crossed our minds). But oven space is limited and there some people who want real food.

But back to the baking.

Aroma therapy is free at Tres Market.  Early morning customers can't help but have their mood lifted when they smell the combination of butter, sugar, and cinnamon.  Throw in some chocolate and pecans and they become downright happy!  How can you not love a job that does that to people?  As the next shift trickles in, the new day starts with a recap of everyone's evening and their plans for today.  Good moods pretty much permeate the place right now.  I think it's the butter.