19 Feb

Part of the reason why I have left the blog to die a bit, its because I been busy on the side trying to launch side business, one that I’m hoping will give me a bit of extra cash on the side to pay off my mother and buy more shoes and purses, because what girl can say NO to a pair of shoes or a purse… if you just answer “I can”… there is the door sister and don’t bother walking back in. Shoes and purses make.the.world.go.round.and.round. TRUST ME.

Anyway, were was I? Oh yeah, new business.

As some may know (or not) I love to cook, I love to entertain, I can slave away in a kitchen for 3 days to put out the perfect feast on the table and then sit back and glow as the praise comes in. It is the way I grew up, everything my family did revolved around the kitchen table and with it the food we made to celebrate the milestones in our life – a birthday, a new job, an anniversary, a death (yeah we are sort of morbid too) its how we marked the connection between us. There is something wonderful when you want to gather your friends and family around and share food. When I go into the kitchen, or when I even think about going into the kitchen, I’m creating and responding to an idea I hold about myself, what kind of person I am, or wish to be. Food lies in the heart of who I am.

For many years as I hosted party after party for friends, family even strangers, they have push the idea in launching a catering business or opening a restaurant. My response was always the same, “no, I don’t think so, its way to much work and I want to cook to enjoy it, not having it become a forceful activity full of responsibilities and deadlines, I had enough of that in my regular job.” Cooking was my escape, my heaven and I was not going to compromise on that.

Yeah, until the bills started to pile up. In the last 2 years or so I have been financially strapped and had to struggle to pay bills, trying to keep my head above water. I have a side business already called Extra You, and it did help me for a while, but loosing my biggest client had put me back in the red and I have found myself once more struggling to come up with ways to make those nasty bills go away.

Playing the Lotto was not enough.

A couple of weeks ago my sister mention that her boss was having an event and she requested that I carter the event, she had eaten numerous times in our house and had tasted the food and wanted to see if I would be interested in feeding about 30 people for a quick dinner. Before I had time to digest the idea of it, my sister told me that she pretty much accepted on my behalf and that I better get cracking. Yeah, she had basically pimped me to her boss (what is family for, if not for that right?) While I was a bit put out, it was a bit exiting, the thrill of finding combinations of menus, and ideas and passing it on to the client and finally winning the bid for the job, it was just good to be my own boss again. It was good to hold my destiny in my hand… oh shit,who am I kidding? it would be a nice little profit if I played my cards right. It’s always about the hard, cold DINERO.

So, for the last 3 weeks I agonized over menus, changed it to fit the client about a gazillion times, talked NYBoy to design me a kick ass business card and basically went to town. Last Saturday was SweetBites (catchy eh?) first event. 30 people, hungry as a mob of 100 and my nerves close to being shot to hell. I mean, what if they did not like the food? what if they got sick over the food? what if they choked on the food? what if there was not enough food? or to much food? or the drinks were not to their liking? Yeah, can you say STRESS please?

The surprise of the evening? Everyone came up to tell me how good the food was, how much they eat and were stuffed and they were sure going to keep my business card at hand for their next event.

Validation people, its all about validation, because deep down I realized that all of these years the reason for serving a feast to my friends, family and in this case strangers was to hear the validation in their voice, and I get off in the praise. Is this sick or what?

The outcome is yet to be known. I’m counting on a soft marketing approach, where it more about word of mouth as oppose of splashing an ad all over town. It seems to be working, I got 2 more potential jobs lined up so I guess I better start sharpening those knives because those bills, those bastards just wont go away.


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