Category Archives: Pie Gift Certificates

Sweet and Savory Pies for Pi Day!

Happy International Pi Day!

gThankYou! Pi Diagram

Diagram from 314 Solutions, Inc.

Around the world, people celebrate mathematics on March 14.  Pi (Greek letter “π”) is the symbol used in mathematics to represent the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter; which is approximately 3.14159 but can be calculated out to about a trillion decimal places!

Here at gThankYou! we take the liberal view of Pi – in order to celebrate gThankYou! Pie Gift Certificates and delicious pies of course!

Deep Dish Winter Fruit Pie with Walnut Crumb

Pi Day comes at a rather inconvenient time for pie bakers, when the fruits of summer are still a long way off. Solve that problem with this deep dish beauty, which combines dried figs, fresh apples and pears, and either fresh or frozen cranberries for a pie tasters describe as “amazing” and winning “rave reviews” from “gaga” guests.

photo by Sara Remington via Epicurious.com

photo by Sara Remington via Epicurious.com

Find the recipe, taken from “Rustic Fruit Desserts: Crumbles, Buckles, Cobblers, Pandowdies, and More” by Cory Schreiber and Julie Richardson, on Epicurious.

Pear and Almond Tart

photo by  YasmineAbdullah via Flickr.com

photo by Yasmine Abdullah via Flickr.com

The difference between a pie and a tart is really very minor. According to The Kitchn, a pie is “a sweet or savory dish with a crust and a filling. The sides of a pie dish or pan are sloped,” unlike a tart pan, which has straight sides. A pie “can have a just a bottom, just a top, or both a bottom and a top crust,” while tarts are open face. And pie crust, made from flour, salt, butter or lard and cold water, can go either sweet or savory, while a tart crust often contains sugar.

No matter how you define it, this pear and almond tart is a keeper. The recipe, published in the February 2005 issue of Bon Appetit, comes from Paule Caillat. Feel free to adapt the recipe using canned pears: just drain them, “dry them very well and carry on.”

Double Crust Apple Pie

photo by Edward Kimuk via Flickr.com

photo by Edward Kimuk via Flickr.com

For one entire summer, Evan Kleiman, the host of KCRW’s popular radio show “Good Food,” made a pie every single day.

Serious Eats reports that after all the variations on “shepherd’s pie, ice cream pies, cream pies, fried pies, gallettes, crostadas, small French tarts, and bastillas,” her favorite pie was this one — the double crust apple pie.

“It has everything,” she wrote. “The yielding sweetness of fruit cooked in sugar with a hint of cinnamon. If I were an apple, it’s how I’d like to go.”

Savory Pork and Peas Pie

Nicole Mourian won four ribbons at the Fourth Annual Good Food Pie Contest in 2012, at least one of them for her humble-sounding pork and peas pie.

photo by LA I'm Yours via the Good Food blog

photo by LA I’m Yours via the Good Food blog

The secret to this recipe is twofold: controlling the temperature, and high quality ingredients. According to the Good Food blog, “It’s a combination of slow roasted Niman Ranch pork shoulder, pork belly, carrots, chopped Gravenstein apples and peas that she had shucked and frozen last spring.

“She combined the braising liquid from the pork belly with a little flour and rosemary to form a gravy. And as if that weren’t enough, her pie crust is made with the unctuous European Style Butter from Straus Family Creamery in Northern California.”

Still, there’s little doubt those of us without access to Niman Ranch and Strauss Family products can still come up with something pretty amazing for a chilly March night. Who says pie has to be sweet to be delicious?

We hope we have given you plenty of reasons to celebrate Pi(e) day tomorrow!  Brighten someone’s day with a pie.  You’ll be glad you did.

About gThankYou, LLC

Turkey Gift Certificates and Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou! are two of America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any Brand (Turkey or Turkey Or Ham), at virtually any Grocery Store in the U.S.

gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime.  gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and our free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo. And, nearly all orders ship same day.

gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin.  Contact:  Rick KileyChief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-484-1658.
Follow the Company Blog –  “Celebrating Work”.
Join the Conversation @gThankYou 
Watch our gThankYou! YouTube Video – “Learn More About Us”.

“G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

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Thanking Employees at Easter Time

A sincere “thank you” at work means a lot, so it makes sense to find ways to show your employees you appreciate them throughout the year.

WateringCan 2013Whether you choose to celebrate the Easter Holiday or Springtime, your employees will be grateful for the recognition and the post-winter pick-me-up.

In fact, a Harvard Business Review (HBR) blog notes that saying thank you is vital. In “Do You Really Need to Say Thank You?” Peter Bregman, author of 18 Minutes: Find Your Focus, Master Distraction, and Get the Right Things Done, writes:

“When you offer a real thought-out “thank you” to someone, you’re acknowledging her effort, appreciating her thoughtfulness, recognizing her intent, and offering feedback on the impact of her actions.

Still, it’s more than that. Those things are rational, but saying “thank you” is mostly an emotional act. It connects one person to another. Saying “thank you” doesn’t just acknowledge someone’s effort, thoughtfulness, intent, or action. It acknowledges the person himself.

Acknowledging other people is … perhaps the critical responsibility … of a good manager, but … that’s understating it. Acknowledging each other is our basic responsibility as human beings living in community with other human beings.”

But is it appropriate to celebrate Easter in the workplace?

gThankYou! - 5 Easter Eggs Enclosure CardMost Companies say Yes! So says WorkplaceCommunications.com:

“Of course, not everyone celebrates the holiday, but this should not stop you from offering your employees a [thank you gift].”

An article by Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) staff in HR Magazine makes a great point about any workplace gifts or festivities for holidays: Make sure everyone feels included. If that means a more secular approach for your organization is a better fit, don’t loose the great opportunity to thank employees, just change your emphasis to celebrating the emergence of Spring.

“It can be difficult to stay religiously neutral during [holiday] celebrations,” according to SHRM member Melissa Fulwider of Augusta Iron & Steel Works Inc. in Augusta, Ga. Her tips include:

  • Thank employees for their work throughout the year.
  • Give everyone a small gift.
  • Share a meal with employees.

Here are a few employee appreciation ideas for your Easter or Springtime gift:

  • Homemade TreatsHot cross buns, carrot cake muffins, cupcakes with bright-colored frosting, or decorated sugar cookies say Happy Easter or Happy Spring.
  • Gift BasketsWhile they’re typically for kids, what adult wouldn’t want to receive basket full of chocolate and other goodies?
  • Items that Say “Spring is Coming”Try a flower-pot with a packet of seeds or planted spring bulbs that will bloom in the office.
  • Small Gift Certificates or Gift CardsEmployees will appreciate even a $5 certificate for pie or ice cream.  Something they can enjoy alone, or share with their family. There’s a gift certificate or card for every budget.
  • Office Party – Host an office breakfast or special lunch. Make it festive and everyone will enjoy the special break. It’s a great way to celebrate a team or work group.
  • Get Outside – Celebrate by planting flowers at a local shelter.
  • Write a Thank You Note – Personalized notes of gratitude are always a welcomed gift of recognition.

In “Easter Activities for the Office,” SmallBusinessFreeForms.com suggests an Easter office party:

“An office Easter basket lunch party always put a smile on [workers’] faces. … Take some Easter Baskets and fill them with a sandwich, Easter hard-boiled eggs, chips, and don’t forget the Easter cookies and candy. You can also add some Easter-themed pens and notepads, etc. to the baskets. Have some refreshments to go along with these and maybe a large fruit and vegetable tray … with a little Easter decor and have some fun. …”

If you go the party route, SmallBusinessFreeForms.com offers a free Easter party flyer.

If you choose homemade gifts, Workplace Communication.com, in “Easter Basket to Make for the Workplace,”  suggests a fun way to make them. If your staff is small, maybe a group could have a (paid) work party and make them for the rest of the team.

 How does your business thank Employees at Easter time? Do you celebrate the Easter holiday or make it a Spring-theme event?

About gThankYou, LLC

Turkey Gift Certificates and Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou! are two of America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any Brand (Turkey or Turkey Or Ham), at virtually any Grocery Store in the U.S.

gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime.  gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and our free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo. And, nearly all orders ship same day.

gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin.  Contact:  Rick KileyChief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-484-1658.
Follow the Company Blog –  “Celebrating Work”.
Join the Conversation @gThankYou 
Watch our gThankYou! YouTube Video – “Learn More About Us”.

“G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

Thank Your Staff: It’s Administrative Professionals Week!

Always the last week in April, with Administrative Professionals Day Wednesday, April 25, it’s a great time to show your gratitude and appreciation to these valued employees.

gThankYou! - Administrative Professionals Week 2012 LogoThe theme for this year’s Administrative Professionals Day  is “Admins, the pulse of the office,” according to the International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP), as the holiday marks its 60th anniversary.

It’s one of the largest workplace observances outside of employee birthdays and major holidays, IAAP reports. The event is celebrated worldwide, bringing together millions of people for community events, educational seminars and individual corporate activities recognizing support staff.

Say it with Gift Certificates of Gratitude
Holiday Insights notes the most common ways to recognize your administrative professionals are:

  • Cards, often with Gift Certificates
  • Flowers
  • Lunch
  • Candy
  • Gift baskets

Administrative Professionals:  The Heart and Pulse of the Office
These professionals certainly deserve your thanks. IAAP calls them “the steady center of efficiency … helping ensure jobs get done right, on time and under budget.”  And, usually with a smile and a bright disposition too.

International speaker and trainer Marja Lee Freeman, “The Employment Lady”, and founder of M.L. Freeman Consulting, asks  “So, what are YOU DOING for your staff this Administrative Professionals Week?” in her article, Administrative Professionals Week Celebration . “It’s time people realize the office administrator is the heart and pulse of a successful organization—for profit, nonprofit or any profit!” she enthuses.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports more than 4.1 million secretaries and administrative assistants work in the United States and 8.9 million people work in various administrative support roles.

Recognize Support Staff’s Contributions
Although it’s important to recognize employees throughout the year, Administrative Professionals Week provides a great opportunity to thank support staff for their contributions, advises OfficeTeam’s Robert Hosking, Executive Director of the world’s largest temporary staffing service for Administrative Professionals.

The staffing firm’s press release at PR Newswire, OfficeTeam Offers Recognition Tips For Administrative Professionals Day (April 25), says “Although the achievements of these individuals often occur behind the scenes, administrative professionals make a significant impact on their organizations every day.”

And Harvard Business Review enumerates admins’ contributions in The Case for Executive Assistants.  “At senior levels (of Management) the return on a skilled assistant can be substantial”, says author Melba J. Duncan.  And, “granting middle managers access to an assistant—or shared resources—can give a quick boost to productivity even at lean, well-run companies.”  Duncan adds:

“Effective assistants can make enormous contributions to productivity at all levels of the organization. They ensure meetings begin on time with prep material delivered in advance. They optimize travel schedules and enable remote decision making, keeping projects on track. And they filter the distractions that can turn a manager into a reactive type who spends all day answering email instead of a leader who proactively sets the organization’s agenda.”

Melba J. Duncan is president of search and consulting firm The Duncan Group and author of  “The New Executive Assistant: Advice for Succeeding in Your Career”.

At gThankYou.com, we’ll thank our support staff with gift certificates for ice cream.  How will you thank yours?  Let us know.

About gThankYou, LLC

Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou! are one of America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any Brand whole Turkey or half or whole Ham, at virtually any Grocery Store in the U.S.  

gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime.  gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo, and ship same day.

gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin.  Contact:  Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-484-1658.
Follow the Company Blog –  “Celebrating Work”.
Watch our gThankYou! YouTube Video – “Learn More About Us”.

“G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

Fun facts to celebrate Pi Day

Servers at the Hubbard Avenue Diner, our favorite local pie shop, wear clever T-shirts bearing the Greek letter pi π, which stands for the mathematical ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter: 3.1415926535, (et cetera, et cetera, et cetera). 

Remember learning about this number in geometry class, and competing to be the one who could memorize the most digits (now calculated by computer to surpass one trillion digits following the decimal-wow!)?

Today (3/14) is Pi Day. For fun and to honor this endlessly fascinating number, we offer here some interesting pi information. Absorb these facts while enjoying a slice of your favorite pie (Blueberry Crumble for me).

Enjoy your pi day. And please share with us your favorite pi fact and way to celebrate Pi Day.

The Best Pumpkin Pie (or, Happy Thanksgiving, Canada!)

If you’re Canadian, you’re celebrating Thanksgiving today. Living close enough to see the border of our northern neighbor like us, we hear plenty about how the Canadian celebration differs from its November counterpart celebrated in the U.S. My Canuck friends always distinguished their Thanksgiving as more of a harvest dinner, than a food fest.

 

With pumpkin pie, fresh is best.

 

But according to a recent article in the Toronto Star, the Canadian feast differs in one primary way:

“It’s an annual feast held the second Monday of October, but the calendar isn’t the only thing that distinguishes our Thanksgiving from that celebrated south of the border.”

What about pie? Pumpkin still dominates, but it’s a pie with more pronounced flavor notes. Again, Thanks to the Star:

“Canadians enjoy a spicy pie infused with nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves and ginger, while Americans typically complete their feast with one that’s custardy and sweet.”

Regardless of your spice-to-sweet taste preference, pumpkin pie is a true seasonal joy to behold and an absolute must on any Thanksgiving table. According to several recent news articles, home-roasted pumpkin versus its store-bought canned season is the key to making a really fantastic pumpkin pie.

According to a testimonial in a recent Milwaukee Journal Sentinel blog post, “…a blind taste test of pumpkin pie with canned pumpkin and with fresh pumpkin. Guess which won by a landslide? Fresh.”

Roasting a pumpkin in your oven is as easy as pie, too. See a video demonstration on the JS Online blog.

Claiming it makes a “truly exceptional pumpkin pie,” the Chillicothe Gazette provides those uninitiated with a “recipe” for home-made pumpkin puree

Fresh pumpkin puree can be used in any pumpkin recipe, not just pie. But in my mind, there’s no better way to use pumpkin than in a pumpkin pie. Try roasting one in your oven this year if you prefer the home-made variety, then weigh in with your preference.

Top Pie Picks

gThankYou recently added of Pie Gift Certificates to our lineup for one reason:  customer request. The fact that customers were asking us to include a Gift Card for pie underscores the popularity of this comforting pastry in our hearts.

 

Fun at the Great American Pie Festival

 

According to the experts at the American Pie Council, we serve up 186 million pies purchased at grocery stores annually. That’s about $700 million in pie sales at markets alone!

More and more, gourmet pies are sold alongside traditional choices right in your supermarket. But what are the most popular pies today? I don’t want to start a debate or anything, but here’s what the Pie Council found in a 2008 survey by it conducted with Crisco.:

  1. Apple (19%)
  2. Pumpkin (13%)
  3. Pecan (12%)
  4. Banana Cream (10%)
  5. Cherry (9%)

Another pie favorites list published in the Nation’s Restaurant News in 2005 named the top 10 pies served in restaurants across the U.S.:

  1. Apple
  2. Chocolate or French Silk
  3. Coconut or Coconut Cream
  4. Pecan
  5. Berry (all kinds)
  6. Key Lime
  7. Lemon
  8. Pumpkin
  9. Cherry
  10. Banana or Banana Cream

We haven’t even touched on the kind of pie people most like to make (and eat) at home. Perhaps rhubarb – our pick — and other regional favorites would show up on that list. What’s your favorite to buy in a store, order out or make at home?

Look to the Professional Gift Pros

Those in the business of Thanks rarely get a chance to see it in action first-hand.  But that’s what happened recently when gThankYou was among a select group of professional gift pros highlighted in a story in the October Business Beat Magazine. The feature in the publication of the Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce explores the wide array of opportunities for giving professional gifts, noting that many firms choose to recognize employee accomplishments and occasions.

The heart of the message: “a gift lets you know you’re appreciated.”

And that’s really at the heart of why we’re here, to help company leaders appreciate employees, customers and friends. But it’s how we help that means the most to both employees and employers. Explains gThankYou President Rick Kiley of our popular Turkey Gift Certificates, the gift that launched it all and continues to be popular during the holidays, particularly around that season of gratitude, Thanksgiving:

“It’s so convenient for employees, and gives them flexibility and choice. They can redeem the certificate at their convenience and choose the turkey that suits them. It’s a very meaningful, highly visible gift that puts the employer front and center.”

That convenience and meaning allows gThankYou certificates convey appreciation in a way that builds relationships and engages employees.

It’s a rare treat for us to have such an “aw, shucks” moment. But having our work highlighted in this way gives us a glimpse of the appreciation that comes through recognition. Sort of a validation that what we’re doing really works. It certainly has given us a boost to work even harder to spread Thanks around.

Good News: More Pie in Stores

Mom (almost) never uttered an unkind word in front of young ears. Except when it came to making pie pastry. It was her culinary nemesis. Fast forward to 2010 and no one really needs to bother struggling to find the correct temperature water and precise fat-to-flour ratio to achieve the perfect pie.

Thanks to innovation in the food industries, we have access to just about any type of pie imaginable right in our neighborhood grocery stores. And we’re eating it right up. The popularity of store-bought pies has increased in recent years, according to a baking industry report.

Blame the now bygone recession for our increasing appetite for supermarket pie. As people continue to eat in, they’re choosing tasty pies from the supermarket to cap their meal at home. In the March 2010 report “Home sweet home,” Mark Grandanetti, president of Rocky Mountain Pies in Salt Lake City noted:

“Consumers seem to be spending more time at home instead of dining out, and this trend seems to be driving the high-end product sales. It’s less expensive to dress up the dinner table with a nice dessert than it is to go out to dinner at a restaurant.”

Apple and blueberry pies are still top choices. But bakers said that consumers want more unique, high-end pies that will “stop the shopping cart.” (Sour Cherry or Blackberry Peach Crunch anybody?) Increased demand has also prompted producers to make pies in a wider variety of sizes, too adding 8- and 6-inch pies to shelves alongside traditional sized pies.

Good to keep in mind, even if you are of the DIY mindset in the kitchen. Why bother, when you have gourmet pie options like this right on store shelves?

NEWS RELEASE – Pie Gift Certificates, New from gThankYou!

Corporate America’s Top Employee Gift source gThankYou! has added new Pie Gift Certificates to its popular line of workplace gifts. Theses new gift certificates increase the array of delicious and thoughtful employee Gift Certificates and give employers more convenient and meaningful ways to recognize employee achievement and customer success.

6-Slice Pie“Everyone loves pie,” says gThankYou President Rick Kiley. “Ours comes in every flavor imaginable without the inconvenience of lugging and storing, serving and slicing.”

Employers choose the perfect gThankYou Pie Certificate dollar amount for their reward and recognition program to celebrate sweet success. Denominations range from $5 to $10. Recipients can redeem gThankYou Gift Certificates at virtually any supermarkets for the pie or similar dessert they choose.

gThankYou Pie Gift Certificates can also be used to purchase cake, cheesecake or a similar treat.  Nearly all supermarkets and mass merchant grocers honor gThankYou Certificates.  Details are on the FAQ for Givers section of the gThankYou! website.

Pie with SlicePersonalize each Gift Card free of charge for employees or customers with one of the new Pie Enclosure cards, seen here, or any of the Company’s Enclosure Card options. New Pie Enclosure Cards feature an assortment of wedges arranged artfully on a plate, and a slice embellished with a creamy dollop. As a extra service, gThankYou prints your choice of free Enclosure Card with your company name and the name of the recipient; company logos can also be included.

Complete information regarding gThankYou! Pie Gift Certificates is on the gThankYou website.  Details include:

Famous for its popular Turkey, Ham, Grocery and Ice Cream Certificates, gThankYou is the top choice gift for employees. gThankYou Gift Certificates are as convenient and easy for firms to give as they are meaningful, appreciated and simple for employees to redeem.

About gThankYou, LLC. gThankYou helps companies celebrate with employees, customers and friends with Gift Certificates that are simple to purchase, easy to distribute and convenient to redeem. gThankYou Gift Certificates create an ideal opportunity for workplace leaders to recognize successes. gThankYou, LLC is based in Madison, Wisconsin. Learn More about gThankYou on the company’s website. And find out how rewards can boost your company’s bottom line at Celebrating Work, the blog of gThankYou.

Contact: Rick Kiley, President, gThankYou, LLC, info@gthankyou.com, 888-484-1658.

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