I’ve got a thingfor Whole Foods.
Years ago when I traveled a lot for work, I’d periodically run into a Whole Foods to stock the hotel fridge or get a meal when I’d hit restaurant overload.  I thought the stores were nice, a bit high, and similar to the Starbucks craze of years past – I just didn’t get the hype.
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Then they built a Whole Foods in Baton Rouge.  I went to the grand opening, explored the store and the connection began.  I was like a country bumpkin on their first visit to the big city.  Taken in by the visual appeal, vast variety, ample samples, education, community outreach,  knowledgeable staff, on point customer service and good good good food at that store.  Plus, I’m right in line with their overall philosophy.  
 It’s a place where I learn about and get foods close to the way God put them here for us.
My Whole Food thing started with monthly visits.  I see why some people call Whole Foods  “Whole Paycheck” and my frugality would not allow me to transfer all of our grocery/household shopping there. It was my go-to place for specialty items and a getaway experience.  (Is it sad that when I have alone time, I enjoy spending a good bit of it walking the aisles or sitting with a book in a grocery store???)

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Last summer my thing progressed in frequency and involved more of the family.  Every week, I’d take the kids on our Whole Foods Field Trip to learn about and try a new food.  The staff loves sharing knowledge about their area.  It was like going to an interactive museum exhibit.  The kids enjoyed this regular outing in our schedule, they were learning a lot and I was expanding their paletes. It was great… for the kids.
Summer ended, the kids went back to school and the thing progressed more.  Around this period, I’m at Whole Foods 3-5 days per week.   Not a big deal if it was around the corner- but it is a 22 mile round trip drive in Baton Rouge traffic away.  
My husband noticed how often I talked about my experiences at the bar.
He did an intervention on one of our rare no children date days. It was my turn to plan our afternoon and I took him to Whole Foods. During this interesting conversation, my husband calmly repeated to me “Honey – it’s just a grocery store”.  Realizing that he just didn’t understand, I implored that he give it time, give it a chance and he would see it was more.  He was more logical and persuasive.   I came to see the kookiness of driving 45 minutes to have them make me a $7 sandwich for lunch – and I pulled back. I still had my Whole Foods thing – but it went back to a 1-2… ok 2-3 times per month thing.  All things in moderation.

Well, yesterday for my birthday dessert, my husband served this cute itty bitty Whole Food’s signature Fresh Berry Chantilly Cake.  
Whole Foods Berry Chantilly Cake

 In all of my Whole Foods exploration, I had deliberately not done the sweet side of the bakery so this was a first taste. It was………the BEST….cake I have ever had.
Moist, deliciously and delicately sweet…Soft cake, layered and covered with a frosting of whipped cream and mascarpone… Perfectly ripe strawberries, blueberries and blackberries inside and out… Fresh and light, rich and decadent – all at the same time.  One little piece, savored bite after bite is all it takes. All who have had this cake know what I’m talking about. MY GOODNESS!  Why did my man bring me this cake?

 So – while we sat there, thoroughly enjoying the cake, my husband commented on how informative and helpful the bakery staff was during his trip at the store.   Whole Foods did it again. The ‘thing’ continues.



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