The MayFLOUR and other STUFFING.

I am quite sure this is too much happiness in one blog. I can deal with it, and in fact am, bedazzled with joy to share this line up with you!!

November 10th is our annual “WELCOMING OF THE APPLES” day as well as a wine tasting by Silver Coast Winery AND a jewelry show by Sara Webster AND  a fall Farmer’s Market with some of our favorite local farmers.

We are also really amping up the giving back this season and are selling wreaths to benefit the local 4H chapters (they get 100% of the proceeds), Hess Trucks to benefit Children at Heart Adoption Agency and a slew of other local charities with a clean line of where your donation is going to be of the most impact!

This, however, means a TON of work on your part. You do have to PRE-ORDER your apples, your wreath and your Thanksgiving pies. I know. I am making you work for a change. I feel horrible.


ALBEMARLE PIPPINThe crisp, juicy, firm flesh and very distinctive taste, along with its excellent keeping qualities, made the Pippin the most prized of American dessert apples from the early 18th century

ARKANSAS BLACK Medium in size, the color is a lively red, deepening on the exposed side to a purplish red or nearly black. Flesh is yellowish, very hard and crisp, with a distinctive aromatic flavor. It is a long keeper that improves in storage. Ripens in October or November. Good for cider and cooking.

GOLDRUSH Fruit is medium size, yellowish-green in color, and round-conic in shape. Very tart at harvest (early to mid October), it mellows to excellence as a dessert apple after 6-8 weeks in storage

GRANNY SMITH A large, bright-green apple with a peened surface, it is sometimes flushed purplish-brown.   The white flesh is very crisp and juicy. It is resistant to bruising and cedar apple rust. Granny Smith is suitable for cooking, cider making, and sauce, as well as dessert.

PINK LADYLarge in size and oblong in shape with a deep-set eye, the green skin turns yellow on maturity, and is overlaid with pink or light-red. The white flesh is fine-grained, firm and subacid, making it a tasty dessert apple

STAYMANThe white flesh is tinged a greenish-yellow and is firm, tender, and fine-textured. The subacid flavor is distinctive because of its tart and vinous qualities

SUNCRISPA dessert variety, the flavor is a complex blend of the Cox acidity with Golden Delicious sweetness. Fruit is large, conical, with a dull-orange blush. Golden Delicious is a parent; Cox’s Orange Pippin and Cortland are grandparents, hence heritage is similar to Gala.

VIRGINIA GOLDBright yellow on ripening, with a pink blush and a smooth, clear skin, the flesh is crisp, juicy and mildly subacid with the flavor characteristic of the Pippin

WINESAPSmall to medium in size and round to oblong in shape, the skin is a deep-red or maroon in color with the yellow background showing on the shaded side. Indistinct flushes and stripes of a darker red, and sometimes a netting of russet, overlay the lighter red. The yellow flesh is sweet, crisp, and aromatic, with a vinous flavor.

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Don’t worry. We have a million forms for the wreaths at the bakery!!! And yes, you can phone in the orders. Please order apples in 5 lb increments. Yes, we will be delivering to Epic this year, as well as a Scotts Hill Location to help make your holiday smooth!

We are all so happy to be moving out of October, I can’t even tell you. If you feel like a quick trip to the Southern Land Of OZ on Wednesday though, we have the full cast and crew on hand to sing you songs and feed you rainbows!! (Mr. Smith is the Lion if that gives you an idea of how we cast it!!!)


Ole’ Florence Spiteandgale

In the words of Florence Nightingale: Image result for i think one's feelings waste themselves in words

We are currently in a position where there are so many actions to be taken. Why, you can’t look in any direction in our part of the state and not be knocked breathless with all the actions you could be taking. People need new homes, homes cleaned, homes repaired, pets cured and healed, furniture and clothing replaced, farms rebuilt, businesses reconstructed, streets and beaches cleaned-the list goes on. (Feeling all my editor friends flinch with that run-on. Sorry, I meant it.) Everyone is currently in need of something, certainly some worse than others and the theme for the rest of 2018 absolutely must be patience and kindness and generosity.

We have been awed by the stories that have been told to us of everyday heroes and a beautiful community spirit. It stretched all the way across the state as people opened their homes to strangers and evacuees. Continue to tell your story. Let people hear about the kindness that you received along this journey. Leave nothing out. These tales passed down are so much more important and potent than internet click bait designed to sell ads and nothing more.

The fantastic news? All of our wonderful employees made it through the storm safe and sound. Some minimal damage but all safe as were their critters.

The less than great news, the little Farm to Island Market (formerly Sister’s Organic) did not make it through the storm as gracefully as she hoped. She was an old building and had seen so very, many storms and decided enough was enough.  Unfortunately, many of the farmer’s who provided the market with delicious produce and meats also suffered the same fate. We have begun to say our good-bye’s to the little store that was such a snug ray of sunshine. The bakery is a stern thing and while there was some water, some power surges that fried things and a massive loss of product she will recover beautifully.

But what, EXACTLY, does that mean to you? Well, it means we now sell wine in the bakery in addition to beer and that there will be local eggs, dairy and casseroles from Epic available at the bakery. We will bring in seasonal produce and beautiful NC cheeses and yes, we will carry pet food. It means we will be OPENING AN HOUR EARLIER. Yes, you read that right. 9 a.m. (I can hear jaws dropping. Shush.) AND we are adding an extra day- Tuesday through Sunday.  This will start here shortly, we have to make some adjustments. Sadly, Terry Z., this does mean your booth in front has to move but we have made you another wee nook we promise you will enjoy!

The warmth shown to us by our friends has been INCREDIBLE. So many inquiries, calls, visits, meals, snacks, treats, sheet pan washing, inventory taking, furniture moving, trash hauling, overwhelming friendship. Thank you all from the bottom of our heart. We wouldn’t be able to recover this quickly without you!!!!

We will be open this Saturday 9-4 and Sunday 11-4. We will figure out the rest of the week after the weekend. Fingers crossed all the equipment can maintain through a full rotation of baking. This will help us determine when we begin the new schedule. It will post on the website Sugar Island (which by the way has finally got a fixed shipping page!)

Feel free to request your favorite comfort foods. We received many desperate requests DURING the storm for Salted Caramel Brownies, Ginger Chews, Pimento Cheese, Cinnamon Rolls and Cheddar Pigs 🙂

And nobody need panic when they come in Saturday and Tanis is not at the front. She too fared just fine throughout the storm and was promptly popped on a plane to see her newest grandchild! Meet Wyatt aka McMoo. Is he not the cutest little nugget?


Florence Spiteandgale, an ill, bad-tempered wind, a visitor who overstayed her welcome, a water-logged monster who wreaked havoc and despair. We certainly can’t undo it but as the REAL Florence said, “How very little can be done under the spirit of fear.”

Don’t be afraid. We can do it.

Love, Topsail Island maptacular

Pigs and Cupcakes. As in Pigmas in July!

It is time once again for CHRISTMAS IN JULY!!!!! I live for this week as I can slather slabs of gingerbread with fresh butter and lightly grilled peaches and pretend that it isn’t 90000 degrees outside or alternately monsooning. Summer at the beach-heat or rainsheets. rainfall-monsoon_660_053018035405

Starting tomorrow you will see a brief reappearance of your favorite Christmas cookies, peppermint-spiked lattes, booze-soaked fruitcakes and fantastic sales on puzzles and cards and wrapping paper for those of you who are brilliant and organized OR those of you who know, “TWINKLE LIGHTS, MERCURY GLASS, PIGS AND A COOKIE ARE ALWAYS GOOD THINGS!”.


What does all of this mean??? It means, quite simply that this week you can order Cheddar Pigs at 2 bags for $7.25 and a bag of Christmas Coffee for $7.25 and a Santa Mystery sack of books for $2.50 and 2 Apple Pies for $25.00! (You see what I did with the 25???? So fun.) Can’t eat 2 pies? SHARING IS CARING! And yes, they do freeze nicely. The pie and pig specials are ONLY BY PRE-ORDER. Coffee and Santa bags will be available at shop for walk-ins 🙂  AND ALSO, this Sunday we will be having our summer sidewalk sale at the bakery with beautiful furniture, art and our newest friend, Harry Pig will be there for a meet and greet!

Sunday we will be hosting our very first wine tasting at the Farm to Island Market! We are so excited and do hope you will join us from 5-7 p.m. We will be conducting a wine and cheese pairing, a wine and chocolate pairing, and a wine and veggie pairing! We are traveling the state to bring you local, lovely wines that are not available via distribution-meaning they are exclusive to us and the vineyards as well as beautiful biodynamic wines and some gluten-free ciders and NC and organic beers.

If you follow PairandAle on Instagram or Sugar Island you can follow us on our adventures to the vineyards, farms and breweries! It’s hard, but somebody has to do it.

So don’t forget-week of sales, Sunday of pigs and pecorino. Got it?










pIes, PatricK’s and PEACE.

We could yammer on about Lambs and lions and time change OR we could focus on all the splendiferous foods this month! March 1st ushers in the delights that are Irish Soda Bread, Hot Cross Buns and NATIONAL PI DAY (3/14/18)! That is just the appetizer list! We will be posting the St. Patrick’s Menu online shortly and it does have all your favorites-Guinness Cheddar Bread, Bailey’s Cheesecake, Jamison cupcakes, Blarney Stone Granola and all the yummy goodness! This will be alley-ooped by the Easter Menu. I am NOT thrilled that Easter is on April Fool’s Day this year-not good.

By George it’s a Book Signing, Beer Tasting AND my Birthday!

Washington’s Birthday! is this Thursday and we are celebrating in style with Cherry Pies, whole and by the slice, Cherry Scones, Martha Washington’s Whisky Cake and we will all be decked out in powdered wigs, beauty marks and copious ruffles! (remember if you want more than one whole pie it is SO helpful if you drop us a line but not a lie!)download (1)

Then, this Saturday the 24th, we are hosting a BOOK SIGNING AND BEER TASTING! 9 local authors will be attending, for you to meet, grill them mercilessly about their works and fawn over them for getting them published! What an accomplishment!! And Mr. Smith will be hosting a beer tasting of some NC beers that are NOT distributed meaning, they are NOT AVAILABLE ANYWHERE ELSE and YOU can taste them here, paired with some incredible local cheeses, honeys and breads. Saturday, 1-4! Famous-Reading-Quotes-2-1

And yes, the cat got out of the bag far, far before we had intended. This is Mr. Petunia, he is in charge of handling all telemarketing calls.20180206_152358

We were fortunate enough to be able to purchase Sister’s Organic Market from the wonderful Wheeler family this winter. Since I was a little girl, grocery stores and farmer’s markets have been one of my MOST FAVORITE PLACES (excepting, of course, the library, actual farms and bookstores). This particular jewel-box of a shop has kept me smitten since they opened and they were gracious enough to hand us the reins. There has been much confusion and so the short and simple version is: WE ARE KEEPING BOTH SPOTS. The bakery has long been bursting at the seams, our personal farming/gardening efforts have taken on both depth and scale to be able to provide for more than just our family and we have long had this majestic list of farmers and artisans and butchers that rules and space kept us from sharing with you all at the bakery. And no, the encroaching mega-stores and other enterprises popping up here and there are not of a concern to us because we ARE KEEPING IT SMALL. We bake in small batches. We stay open year-round because it is for everyone, we insist on personally knowing our customers and making sure we all eat the best, tastiest and most responsible things grown and made by friends that we can. WE go and GET the stuff. It is NOT coming on a tractor trailer. And the same principles will apply to the market. Same location. Same wonderful, warm staff. Just more good stuff.  The new additions will just keep coming at a steady and manageable rate. And yes, the name will change because Shawn and I are not sister’s. We are very grateful to our family and friends for fostering this opportunity and are delighted by your enthusiasm and support! Greater Wilmington Business Journal , 

Visit Pender

And so, Thursday, History and Pies and Frippery. Saturday-books and beer and baked goods. Lots of fun to be had by all!

Martha Washington’s Cake will put some pep in your step! Whisky Cake by the Ocean!

And you KNOW how Connor feels about Cherry Pie…he’s a Sugar Baby.

New Year’s BELIEVE!

Happy New Year’s! Much to tell about excitement in the upcoming year, but for now, we will let you know about our New Year’s Eve specials and sales! It’s that time again where we borrow a kitchen and create both sweet and savory New Year’s Eve traditional foods!

PLEASE. ORDER. AHEAD. I beseech thee.

Quiche : $18 Spinach, Ham & Swiss – or -Red Pepper, Artichoke & Parmesan

 Cheddar Pigs – $4.25 each

Collards – $7 quart

Black Eyed Peas – $8 quart

Honeyed Cornbread – $7

Apple Crisp – $12

Key Lime Pie – $15

Pumpkin Pie – $16

Sour Cherry Pie – $20

Bananas Foster Cheesecake – $22

Sour Cherry Cheesecake – $22

New Year’s Resolution Granola-$6.25

Fortune Cookie Whoopies – Mini pumpkin whoopies with a fortune in the middle! – $2.25 each

 Happy New Year Cake! – Funfetti cake filled with whipped cream frosted with white chocolate ganache – loaded with sprinkles and glittery white chocolate seashells – $35  – or – Mini Baby Cake – $24

Year of Joy Cake – Multi layer chocolate cake filled with raspberry compote and frosted in milk chocolate buttercream – $33  – or –  Mini Baby Cake – $24

Classic Caramel Cake – $31 – or – Mini Baby Cake $24

 Don’t Forget Your Housemade Pimento Cheese!

Beer Sale ~ 10% off all beer!

Last chance to order Pumpkin Nut Bread before we phase it out until NEXT SEPTEMBER! Pack your freezer, pumpkin lovers!

Honey sale-$1 off per jar, hot sauces $1 off per jar (a MUST with collards), BOOKS bogo, hats and t-shirts 25% off and yes we will be open on New Year’s Day for the FIRST TIME EVER! 10:00 – 1:00!




A.D.V.E.N.T.=A Daily Very Exciting New Treat.

12  Days of NON-STOP FUN! Every day until Christmas Eve we will have special treats in store for you! Some I can tell you NOW, others I can tell you only the morning of! For instance, Wednesday, all used books in the shop are 25% off-no limit! And Friday night we are staying open late for a beer-tasting upstairs! Extra points if you come to the beer-tasting wearing an ugly Christmas sweater but I swear on the Swingbridge, you show up with “Christmas Tree Eyebrows” and it will be the walk of shame out the door! Sleigh whaaaat?? No. This could also be “Eric Carle Ugly Caterpillar Eyebrow Look Alike for Story Hour”?BcZ_7MAAl2w-png__700

I have had to chuckle at a lot of the “must-have” items in major publications this year. “People”, “All Recipes”, USA Today are just NOW telling people to buy Holy Smoke Smoked Olive Oil and the Smithey Ironware Skillets. We have carried these items FOR YEARS. Ha!

This week we are releasing the limited run Rum Cakes, have made new batches of all our pimento cheeses, cookie trays, made some adorable gift packs, gift baskets and cello sets for every teacher, bus driver, vegan, gluten-free, hair dresser, impossible to please and those that are a DELIGHT to give a gift to (aren’t those the best!! people that you love shopping for because they genuinely enjoy good stuff!) we made the gifts with stuff we made or that were lovingly crafted by local artisans! (I know of 3 of my editor friends who died 6 deaths reading that run-on train wreck I just typed. Sorry.)

The genius Sara Webster will be having special sales this week! Watch our store (hint is Friday night ONLY) as well as some fun specials on her Etsy store. (Are those gold danglies not DIVINE? Someone must snap those up, pronto. Premium glamour.)

Sandy Toes will be staying open late on this frosty Friday night as well with some special sales and their signature bow wrapping. All their packages come out looking like works of art!

Buttermints are back! Russian Tea Cakes are being made! Doggie biscuits are being rolled and more Chai Spice from Big Spoon is on the way! We will also have a super-special Black label coffee release for the super coffee snob in your life. There are only 10 bags of this available so make sure you ask to reserve one! One tiny hint of a lecture-DON’T FORGET TO PRE-ORDER YOUR HOLIDAY CAKES, please. You know the rules by now 🙂

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910.254.1110 Beach Elves are standing by. Save a Horse. Ride a Reindeer.

A.D.V.E.N.T.  A Daily very Exciting New Treat.

An Apple a Day Keeps the Blogger Away

I blame the apples for my 6 month blog absence. What is there to write about when you can’t crunch on a satisfying piece of fruit?

THE APPLES ARE COMING!! This Saturday, November 11th, we will be having our Holiday Heirloom Collective! A celebration of the beautiful fruits coming from our friends in Virginia Vintage Virginia Apples and delivered to us by the remarkable Margaret Shelton! Plan to stock up on the likes of Pippins, Gold Rush and Arkansas Blacks! There will also be some beautiful cheeses in stock, specifically some lovely cheddars and more of the Rogue Blue, that sold out lickety-split! margaret

You are welcome to reserve your apples ahead of time. Please call (910.254.1110) or email They are insanely delicious at ALL times but especially next to a grilled pimento cheese…

And WHAT is a holiday soiree without the uber-chic Sara Webster? Featuring never before seen Swingbridge and Sea Urchin pieces as well as her much sought-after gold collection.  5869.jpeg

Our glamorous neighbors at Sandy Toes will be hosting a Holiday Open House that Saturday, as well! I have been collecting the Jude Connally cowl neck dresses of every season for their forgiving fit, copious pockets and indestructible fabric. They are a true closet gem! 23192370_10214850900013966_1861803430_o.jpg

Mary Rowe and the elegant Inis Spa will be having a special sale on their candles and essential oils during all this frivolity! You will leave well-fed, bejeweled, frocked and smelling GORGEOUS!

Once we trip the light fantastic past our holiday show we will be strutting our stuff right in to Turkey Time!! Attached please see our holiday menu. Thanksgiving Menu!  THIS YEAR to gild the lily, we will also be offering ICE CREAM! from our friends at Boombalatti’s. We will have it by the pint to accompany your cakes and pies. Flavor choices are: Cinnamon, Maple Walnut, Vanilla and Apple cider sorbet. (The sorbet is perfect for your vegan guests and also makes a wickedly delicious spin on a mimosa while cooking and watching the parade!)  gallery-1461677456-delish-apple-cider-mimosa-1Wilmington delivery is Tuesday arriving at Epic after 3 p.m. Epic pricing will differ slightly from posted menu prices. All orders must be placed through the bakery, please.

So there you have it! Gold Rush Apples, Golden Jewelry, Glamorous Dresses and Glowing Candles. AT THE BEACH. It doesn’t get too much better than that! OH except there will be a beer tasting with the knowledgeable and handsome Shawn Smith holding forth on all things Holiday-hoppy and some fantastic holiday appetizers to give you some new ideas and we will be GIVING THE RECIPES AWAY WITH THEM. I never do that.

Apple Countdown starts NOW!








Surfella. Like Coachella, but with books and flowers instead of scantily clad, hungry people and music. Yes, it is time for our annual MAY DAY celebration!! Replete with flower crowns, twee herbs in teacups, vintage gardening supplies, culinary herbs and GARDEN PUNCH! Herb-Tea-Cup-may baskets

Happily, Saturday April 29th is ALSO Independent Bookstore Day!! We will be celebrating in our own special style!! There will be a Bookmark Draw, you will pull a bookmark out of a book and it will have a special coupon just FOR you to use towards your book purchase!! There will be BOGO coupons, 75% off coupons, bag sale coupons-you name it!! All W.E.B. Griffin, Star Trek and Romance will be BOGO even WITHOUT the coupon! There will be a table full of Blind dates with a book and coloring books will be half price. We will also be doing literary themed treats!


bookstore day

And in case, that’s not enough excitement for one day, the stellar Sara Webster will be in house for one of her much-anticipated JEWELRY SHOWS!! This collection focuses on her Swingbridge series and includes original artwork and prints as well as jewelry, including gorgeous tea towels with one-of-a-kind fabric created by Spoonflower in Raleigh and sewn by our own Jelena Allen. A true local artists collaboration.

Join us in celebrating the new season with a continued study of the swing bridge – patterns and textures found in and around our beloved swing bridge. First opened in 1955, the Topsail Island Swing Bridge became a means of connection to the barrier island and our hearts.
Saturday, 1-4 p.m.
Jewelry + Prints + Fabric by Sara Webster, Topsail Island, NC


Saturday the 29th. Books, art, jewelry, herbs, beer, friends, coffee, sales-AT THE BEACH. ohhhh AND another yard sale!! Yard Sale from 8-1 Saturday at 127 J.H. Batts road. New selection of beach furniture and amazing DIY, Pinterest project bits.

Yard Sale-127 JH Batts Rd

Book Sale and Garden Partaaaay- 206 N. Topsail Dr (Jewelry Show 1-4)


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Thyme Marches On

Every week the blog will feature a new gardening pun, all the way through Spring!! No, I won’t actually do that, but I couldn’t resist with that bit of hideousness! thyme

St. Patrick’s Day will be here shortly, and you know we have a Patrick and he’s Irish, so we celebrate this one with some real focus! stpatmenu

There will be a beer tasting and an Irish Tea Party-we will email the details soon!

We have a lot of really incredible cookbooks showing  up this week to get you inspired as we gear up for outdoor cooking and grilling. There is also a new line of spice rubs coming out soon that I am excited for everybody to try! The “Chicken Magic” is my favorite!


Here’s a fun garden hack that I have been enjoying-everybody knows about the old yogurt and terra-cotta trick, but I am delighted to report that I have been having great success spray painting old plastic pots to look like they are stone and copper! Gardening can get costly so I am always looking for ways to salvage old things and I must say, metallic paint is my hero!

St. Patrick’s Day and Spring Fever always go hand in hand 🙂


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