Oh boy, where does the time go? Our July & August passed us by in the blink of an eye, and we had so many things that have happened to us that I want to share with you today. Earlier this year, we had a great opportunity that came our way and Chef Aric and I were both very excited about it. But the project was pushed back several times, and they turned us down suddenly without any reasonable reason at the end of May. We were in shock and disbelief, at the same time we both started to doubt about ourselves and our business’s future. After a month or so of self-doubt, emotional roller coaster and the damage we felt deeply, I decided to dust myself off as any business woman would do, and see if we could make lemonade when life gave us lemons! (Knowing how great chef Aric is, from the bottom of my heart I knew we could do it)
Maybe because we thought we had this project in front of us, or maybe I was too afraid to put myself in an uncomfortable situation, I realized that I was unconsciously (or consciously) procrastinating to do something very important for our personal chef business; which was introducing ourselves to other network groups, chefs groups (especially personal chefs), and we should be more actively involved with marketing ourselves. So the first thing I told myself was “What would be the worst case scenario when I ask someone for something? “No” and we’ve already got the worst rejection from this project, so I shouldn’t be worrying about getting rejection agin from now on. I’m just gonna ask.” So I did. One of a Denver local FB group that I’m a member of, is focusing and encouraging women’s entrepreneurship, and supporting each other. I posted on the group said, “Hey, I’d like to connect with ladies if your businesses are…” within 24 hours I got massive amount of responses, they were really helpful and supportive, I finally felt the group was safe for me to ask to create a network. From the group, I’m building a new connections and friendships, and now I’m getting ready to announce a very exciting news in a few more days, so stay tuned!
Here is another one. I became a podcast junkie recently, and I enjoy many of them. One of them is called “Struggle to Strength" which is Colorado local podcast that is focused on “health” from every aspects, body, mind and spirit. They provide great resources in their podcast, so I thought, “Hey, maybe they know a few organizations that might need help” when we had trouble finding a non-profit organization for U N I Personal Chef's second annual fundraising event on July 14. I contacted one of the podcaster via Instagram, thinking, “He doesn’t have to respond my message if he thinks I’m just a weirdo, but it’d be great if he does respond me.” Turned out that he went above and beyond to help us out to find an organization (The Phoenix, Denver) that would match our theme for the annual fundraising event. We made a few mistakes and we’re still learning how to organize a fundraising event, but our second annual fundraising was considerably successful to raise just little over $2,000.00. The organization leader in Denver welcomed us with open arms when we contacted him, we exchanged our stories why we want to do this event, and we felt great about our future fundraising event with them.
My “Heck just Ask” journey continued. I contacted another podcasters in Austin Texas when I found out that they were visitings in Colorado on Instagram. They own a well-established personal chef business in Austin Texas, and I thought maybe we should just say, “What’s up?”. The “What’s Up?” Turned into 2 days of great conversation over Zoom, and we got tremendous amount of knowledge about the business from them. We really hope that our new relationship grows from here.
When you’re just focusing on making absolute tasty sweet lemonade in the middle of hot summer, the universe gives you something even better. In mid August, a FB group member posted that her friend needs a personal chef because her originally planned chef just canceled her 4 days prior to her wellness retreat with 6 guests in Estes Park, Colorado. I think it was the fastest conversation Chef Aric and I had with her to sort out what type of food she was looking for, and Chef Aric had to come up with different menus for breakfast, lunch and dinner for 4 days within 24 hours, so we could go grocery shopping to prepare for the first few days of their meals. We packed up our truck with most of the kitchen gadgets, grocery for the first few days worth, our clothes, chargers and other stuff that we didn’t know why we brought with us!
Beautiful Rocky Mountain View in Estes Park, Colorado...
When we arrived to Estes Park, Colorado, our client and her guests were all welcoming us with smiley faces and kindness. Every meal we served, they enjoyed and thanked us, and little by little, they started to feel comfortable with our presence, and started asking us about cooking, recipes, and “how did we start our personal chef business” or “How did you two meet?”. It was a magic in the moment, the highest moment a personal chef can get, and it’s the biggest reward we receive when we serve our dishes and be able to connect in such a personal level. The smiles on their faces, questions they brought to us, and even they joked around with us became our treasure. The reason we do what we love to do, isn’t just for cooking, it’s the connection we can build with each other through our food, and to create our new memories together. The moment we felt sad when we said good bye to them on the last day, it wasn’t because our duty was over, it was because we felt like we were saying good bye to our new friends. (Read her blog what she went through, the experiences she had with us, and the similar outcome she and we saw!)
On the way back to Denver with a little less stuff in the truck, a little fatigue, but full of happiness in our hearts, we kept saying that an opportunity appears when another opportunity closes its door as long as we dust ourselves off and keep moving forward, and keep making tasty, tasty sweet lemonade each time when life gives us lemons...
By the way, here is a good lemonade recipe from Chef Aric! “Lemonade” (about 4 serving) a. Ingredients for Quick Preserve Lemons: 4 Clean Lemon, 1/2 cup Kosher Salt b. Ingredients to make Lemon Syrup: 1 cup Quick Preserve Lemons, 1/2 cup Sugar, 1/2 cup Water, 1/2 cup Fresh Lemon Juice c. Ingredients to make Lemonade: 4 oz of Soda Water To Make Preserve Lemons 1. Cut Lemon in 8 pieces and cover with salt in a mason Jar 2. Squeeze 1 Lemon over & put it in refrigerator for 4 days 3. Rince quick preserve lemons thoroughly 4. Take out inside (fruit parts) of lemons (only use lemon skins) To Make Lemon Syrup 1. Put 1 cup of quick preserve lemon in a pot, add 1/2 cup sugar, 1/2 water, and cook it until sugar dissolves. 2. Cool syrup, add 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice 3. Add 2 oz lemon syrup Into a glass with ice cubes, add 4 oz Soda Water 4. Enjoy!