January 23 is National Pie Day, but I think we should extend it until the end of the month because there’s no way we can eat enough pie in one day to do this designation justice.

From my earliest remembrances pie has been critically important to me. I remember being about eight or nine and being sent from the cotton field to wait for the neighbors to take me to the fair. While I was waiting, I started eating dried apples my mother kept for making my favorite fried apple pies.

I ate some and fed some to the chickens. When she found us, to say she wasn’t happy is an understatement. She whipped me and fastened the chickens in the henhouse with a promise to make dumplings at their expense at her first opportunity.

I now know how labor-intensive drying fruit was before all the modern gadgets came along but back then all I knew was that I loved those sweet, chewy treats. I’m not sure why I thought the chickens would enjoy them–all I remember is that it was a really long time before she made more fried pies.

While she was alive, I should’ve paid closer attention to fried pie construction because every time I tried duplicating hers all I got was a fat biscuit with fruit inside or all the fruit and crust ended up in the grease. Somebody should have told me that this isn’t a skill set you’re born with.

Nevertheless, I still think National Pie Day should be a holiday but since it already has two designated days for celebration—December 1 is the other– perhaps extending it another eight days won’t add too many inches to the waistline.

National Pie Day, according to the National Day Calendar, has only been around since the mid-1970s and we have Charlie Papazian to thank for his sweet thoughtfulness. This nuclear engineer, brewer and teacher loved pie and declared his January 23 birthday as this day of celebration. Since 1986, the American Pie Council—who knew there was such a thing—has sponsored this tasty reminder.

I eat pie and I eat ice cream, but I do NOT eat them together. I love to bake and eat pies and my favorites are German chocolate, pecan, chocolate, peach, apple, plum and strawberry cobbler, fried pies—ok, so I love pretty much anything in a pie. Savory pies—quiches, pot pies, and the like, are also a welcome sight at the end of a long day but you can’t go wrong with pie. You just can’t.

Here are three delicious ways to celebrate this year:

Bake your favorite pie and take it to a friend who can no longer bake. Even if their diet is restrictive, the gesture will be appreciated.

Always make an extra pie to share. We had a neighbor who loved sweet potato pie and any time we had sweet potato pie, he did, too.  I don’t care how many potatoes I used; I still seem to end up with 24 pies—it’s the darndest thing I’ve ever seen.

Have a pie party, bake your favorites and invite friends and neighbors. Just mention that you’re doing it and your guest list will take care of itself. Make sweet and savory ones and include recipes. My crust making is suspect, so check out the grocery aisles and choose a store-bought one and get busy. Pie is a great way to begin a friendship or build relationships—share a slice and watch a beautiful thing unfold.

Share your favorite pie stories with me at #drbondhopson on Twitter and Facebook!

Looking for inspiration, empowerment, uplift, straight talk, an encouraging word to brighten your day? You’ve arrived! Meet Dr. Cynthia Ann Bond Hopson, best-selling author, educator, inspirational speaker, sistergirl–she’s all that and more. All the way from Stanton, TN (you can’t get there from here) to 50 states, six continents and everything in between, she’s wise, witty and altogether wonderful. She enthusiastically invites you to slow down, sit a spell, and share a giggle or two.

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