Thursday, December 28, 2006

Happy Gluten-Free New Years!

I've taken a bit of time off from blogging for the holidays, and I'm trying to prepare myself for what is bound to be an exciting and fun 2007! Part of the reason for a break from the gluten free blog was to of course enjoy the holidays, time with family and friends, and just something different for a while. I've been able to do some of each, and have had time to refresh myself a bit.

It's also been a rather strange year-end here in Cleveland, OH, as temperatures have been well above normal for this time of year. Yesterday I took full advantage of the 50+ degrees and sunshine, and parked a lounge-chair outside on the South side of my house where the sun was reflecting nicely off the white siding, and sat there in shorts and a T-shirt enjoying the equivalent of 70-degrees or so. What a treat for almost January in Cleveland! (though, I find myself asking how bad the greenhouse-effect and global warming must be for this to occur.)

Not everything the last week and a half has been relaxation though. My daughter and I were busy making sales calls to retailers throughout Ohio that are now carrying our book, and that has stirred up all sorts of upcoming "to-do list" items for the coming year. The largest retailer of natural and organic products in Northeast Ohio, the Mustard Seed Market and Cafe', is now carrying our book and would like my wife and I to do a gluten-free baking lecture and/or book-signing event as soon as we can schedule one. This is certainly wonderful, but oh my gosh do I now feel the pressure to get some practice prior to doing a larger show! Our local health food store also wants us to do an event, and that will likely be where we work out some of the kinks before taking on a much larger crowd.

We have also run into an interesting outlet for our books through the medical professionals in the region, especially allergists (wheat and/or gluten allergy treatment) dieticians, and doctors that treat autism. Seems there is a fairly strong correlation between autism and celiac disease, and these professionals are regularly dealing with children that they want so badly to enjoy all the normal experiences of childhood (like, eating a wonderful birthday cake, or enjoying cookies and brownies at a party) while remaining on a gluten-free diet. And, the practitioners are thrilled with the prospects of being able to finally provide their patients with fantastic recipes that will let them realize this goal - ours!

In fact, this same group of doctors has been encouraging me to consider raising the price of our book since they feel it is so above-and-beyond what our "competition" offers; they are telling me to charge $39.95 for it, which I am not inclined to do since my goal all along has been to get the book out to as many Celiac and gluten-free persons as possible and not make price a barrier to acquiring the book. But, I do find the suggestion encouraging, since quite a few persons have now made similar comments that we have done a great job with the recipe book and have kept the price quite reasonable for a full-color satisfaction guaranteed gluten-free desserts recipe and baking guide.

Next, I have been really, really happy to realize my goal of helping other gluten-free, wheat-free, and coeliac persons find complete satisfaction, and even amazement, in their desserts again! I just received a testimonial a few days ago from a lady whose father has been wheat-free and gluten-free since the 1980's. She decided to purchase the book and make her father something he has long since desired: a great birthday cake. She chose our Chocolate-Ganache Cake to bake for her father, and she was completely new to glutenfree baking. I received a few emails from her regarding where to aquire ingredients, and she was able to track down everything just in time to bake the cake for her father's birthday. He was so utterly impressed by the results, that he told her it was the best cake he has had since going GF nearly 20 years earlier, and was blown away by how moist and delicious the cake was. Turns out he was accustomed to dry or crumbly cakes/muffins and such til now, and has appointed his daughter the new "gluten-free baker" in the family. This story just made my day when I read it! It has made me completely confident that I did the right thing by taking the past couple years to complete this book (with much help from my wife and daughter).

2006 was a year of challenge, excitement, and happiness that now seems like a big blur in the rear-view mirror. And, I now enter a gluten-free 2007 knowing I have all sorts of things I want to accomplish this year as well. There are all sorts of new gluten-free recipes coming soon, since my wife had time during the holiday to perfect a few more wonderful recipes. I have a goal of traveling around a much larger portion of the country selling our book (since we only had time for northern Ohio before the holidays). I resolve to give exercise and fitness plenty of emphasis in 2007, as I did in 2006. But, first and foremost, I will try to maintain a focus on enjoying life and finding happiness in what I do. And, I wish everyone that same happiness and enjoyment for their New Years and all of 2007!

5 comments:

Lynn Barry said...

Appears that you are living the life...published author, entrepeneur, and soon a book signing book event personality. HAPPY NEW YEAR! I am honored to be one of your many blogging pals. I know it has to be a bitter pill to be diagnosed with celiac disease, but you are an amazing person to take the bitter pill, swallow it, and then find a way to make it sweeter and to make it sweeter for others. AMEN!

Mike Eberhart said...

Lynn, thanks and Happy New Year to you too. That was a delightful comment to read, and much appreciated. Glad to know you as a blogging pal also.

Ellen said...

Happy New Year Mike! And mazel tov on the book doing so well - I will be ordering my copy soon. Can't wait - if the recipes in your online library are any indication, the book will be a major hit. Thank you for making our world easier to live in.

Best, Ellen

Mike Eberhart said...

Ellen, thanks for the new years wishes and likewise to you! Here's to a wonderful 2007!

Isle Dance said...

YAY!