Global Women's Conference

So many lovely things to offer, and I haven't ven included the cleaning and bathroom ranges, or the homewares!

Thanks so much to Matthew and Lorissa Olsen, who recommended me for the Lifestyle section of the Weekend Herald. It was a really nice article about how lucky we are to live here. I have had a lot of interest from it, even from locals who didn't know we were here. 
Check it out    

Also interesting this week, was a Herald report on the Global Women conference. Speakers included Nicola Bell from Saatchis, and Sarah Paykel who helped establish Lush. The article discusses the challenges of new businesses, the main one being money. Time and again, I have seen women carve businesses out of the air with no money, just sheer grit and determination, while still maintaining a primary role in home making and child rearing. For those who left a career of their own to support a business with husbands, bring up children, or anything in between, heading back into the workforce on their own can be daunting, especially if flexibility is still a consideration. Flexibility often comes with a compromise of small hourly rate,  repetitive work, or contracts including such items as forbidding texting during work hours. For some women, these parameters can make living, working and mothering a tightrope walk, and beginning a business of their own looks to be the only real option to regain some control over their lives. Capital is tied up in homes, or the primary business, so adequate funding  is not available to put a new business on it's feet quickly. Tenacity, resilience, and focus are required by the bucketload, and a positivism which can, at times, be a challenge to muster.
I get by with a little help from my friends. My mother and father, in their eighties, are my emergency courier drivers, picking up eggs, baguettes, stationery and meat when I mismanage the ordering. My mother usually does the shop washing, and reassures me I will be ok. My friend, Nellie, is a constant source of courage and ideas from her experience managing a French cafe. My son, George, without whom I would not be still here, works tirelessly, asking for nothing, and chastising me gently for putting items in use in the big display chiller. He especially keeps me looking at the shop with fresh eyes. My daughter runs the shop when I need to be out with George, cleaning and offering just wonderful, creative ideas. My husband did the fitout, and a terrific job it is, and he even carried all my goodies at the market for me last week.My brothers and their wives have supplied preserves, pumpkins, gift cards, product samples and business expertise whenever they have seen me struggle.Suppliers are always great with new ideas for display, promotion, and anecdotes of how they have handled similar business dilemmas. Kimberley cleans, makes gelato, coffee, and puts the shop in order, often for nothing but a thank you. Gabriella comes in if I need her, even if she is unwell, and does magic things like ringing to see if it is alright to mop the floor. Greg and Katie, at Glendowie Primary, introduced the wegers, and will drop their school bags and get behind the till or gelato counter if they see I am not coping on my own. Even my customers have insisted on paying more if I have undercharged, brought gifts of food, fruit for the gelato and herbs to give away, thanked me for being here, and encouraged me to see how far I have come. They are starting to feel comfortable in the shop, and looking for product which will work for them. As a general rule, they are endlessly patient with my mistakes. I am so grateful, and it keeps me feeling that my place is here just now.
Have a look at the article anyway, good pointers for the fellas too, not just gals.

Bruschetta Tray
I had a lovely order a couple of weeks ago - a tray of bruschetta for a vegetarian luncheon, with a wrap stack.
It was hard not to get carried away...
Gruff Junction Lyttleton Blue with walnuts, crunchy celery and slices of pear rinsed in lemon
Smoked cheese from Evansdale with the lovely Zino Sisters beetroot and horseradish chutney
A schmear of sour cream beaten with dill tips and salt, covered with overlapping, thin slices of cucumber
Sundried tomato hummus with roasted tomato and olives
Sliced goats feta with lemony roman style artichokes and roast marinated mushroom
Fresh Evansdale farmhouse brie with Ziino Sisters Date and Orange chutney
Creamy Gruff Junction Fromage Blanc with a salad of beluga lentils in olive oil and lemon, topped with chives and a small square of pepperdew

The other thing Ive been loving is Rebecca Hay's Hakanoa Ginger Beer, and Ginger syrup. The ginger beer is good, very good...just like we used to make. It is refreshing not to have to suffer too much sweet, great in summer, but just as good on a winter night. I've dropped the rest, and kept the best!
The syrup is so versatile, ginger latte with hot frothy milk, ginger toddy, with hot water and a squeeze of lime (my favourite), dessert topping, marinades, and I am chasing down a recipe for coleslaw dressing with fish sauce, rice vinegar etc. Will post it when I find it. Ginger is great this time of year, but offers great relief all year for motion sickness, morning sickness, any nausea,and sniffles or chest colds. Watch this space, this product is a winner.


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