Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Hi, Anxiety!

.... and hello lovely Zimt Enthusiasts!

Thank you for stopping by to take a moment out of your day to read a bit about the life of Zimt.

Here's some fairly big news that has been on the brain for a while- if you read back to the last post, you will see I began to hint at it in what I believe was the third point- kitchen availability.  The kitchen Zimt has been operating out of has been amazing- it is in a church and in addition to be totally food safe and Vancouver Coastal Health Authority certified, it is frequented by some very friendly staff, parishioners, and volunteers while I am in there, chocolate-ing away.  It is a beautiful space- just gorgeous. Stainless steel everything, commercial dishwasher, even a heated oven-type surface to safely dry the chocolate forms off after washing them. I could not have asked for better. Couldn't even imagine better, and I am almost overwhelmed with gratitude and peace every time I walk in there. After spending so much time there (sometimes for almost 24 hours in one go...), it has really started to feel like home. No matter how hectic and stressful the morning is, whenever I would get to the kitchen, I would just breathe a huge sigh of relief. The hours can be long, for sure, but being there is like going to a spa for the soul.

Mom and Oma in the kitchen- aka our hangout =) 
And I am going to miss it a lot. I already do. The church needs more space for community programs, so as of September 1st at the latest, Zimt will no longer be manufacturing in the present location. I am thankful they gave me so much notice, though, because finding commercial space is really tough.  They absolutely helped get Zimt to where it is today, and to be quite honest, it would have been impossible to have done much of anything without this church's help. Ugh, I miss it so much even though I'm going to be there tomorrow! It is just unpleasant to think of there being an end. I know it is totally unrealistic, but I had always wanted to operate out of that kitchen. It was just really nice to have some stability- this past year has been incredibly chaotic. Many wonderful things, but lots of adjustments.

So, now it is time to find a new home for Zimt. Not so easy, but God's got it under control. He's helped me out with way more challenging things in life (which He caused in the first place?! Oh boy.) and I have learned lots, grown lots, and now, I just have to grow a company with me. ... no big.

Anyway, bawl fest. Actually.

I am not complaining- really- who could complain about memories of that place? I am just slightly devastated it is over.

Again, not complaining- I fully agree with this video, by Marie Forleo: When Life Hands You A Sh*t Sandwich.  (Pretty sure I still have a roof over my head, am living in a rather peaceful country, and have some very incredible people in my life. No complaints what.so.ever.)

One fantastic option is to operate out of the Fairy Cakes kitchen- familiar and very close to the space I am renting! So that is great! (Can you tell I am trying to be really, really happy about this and end my pity party?! Are you convinced?). So, Zimt may get to work out of a lovely facility with a lovely cupcake master, Cera- Fairy Cakes owner and founder. Still need to see what my options are, but I am beyond grateful to have such a kind and generous friend.

Hey! Here is some other happy news! (Three cheers for distractions, am I right?!)- Organic Certification! It is happening on July 4th at 9 am! FINALLY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am so excited and nervous. A couple of days ago, I was thinking, "Emma- what did you accomplish for Zimt so far this year? What new clients did you acquire? How much have you expanded your chocolate company? Are you even doing a half-decent job? Should you get Zimt a new boss?" and then I thought- "Ah, right, the certification. The new packaging. This is a big deal and will allow my little pride and joy to get to the next level- distributors."

I think anyone I spend a decent amount of time with must be so beyond sick of hearing me blab on and on about the certification process and the packaging and I really can't stand to even speak those words much more myself to be perfectly honest,  but hopefully I can put a lid on it after next Wednesday. A week tomorrow. Such a big enormous deal. The new packaging is stunning- thank you to the lovely people who provided their input, and especially to the designer, Dana Lau (let me know if you need your business cards or whatever designed- she can handle it!), and her infinite patience.
Tiger is skeptical at best... 
New Zimt Packaging: Walter Lande Approved!

Look familiar? The times... they are a changing! 
Onto bigger and better things (oh yes it is! What a stunner!)
So, I guess that is about it. How have your past 24ish days been?


I hope they were filled with love and enough chocolate to comfortably swim  in. Not that one would want to do this!


P.S. You thought I almost forgot about the ethical recipe and link to "click-here-and-help-animals-out-for-free-whydoncha?!"... not forgotten!

Click this text and then the purple button!   ... and if you want to go a step further, consider donating 5 bucks a month (or whatever you can afford) to an excellent organization, such as Farm Sanctuary.

And a vegan recipe to round things off...

Mac n Cheeze- what's not to love?! (We're making this, Schatz.)

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Shhhhh! I am making chocolate...!

Hi Everyone,

Happy June 1st! Also known as, my mom's birthday...!

Can you believe she turned 53?!?!?! I can't! This isn't the best picture of her- but honestly, she looked like she was maybe 35 today. Maybe. Maybe 30, after a terrible night's sleep. I don't know how she does it- she doesn't eat a super clean diet or anything and she has tons of stress in her life (I mean, look at who she has for kids! Yikes!). 

Anyway, happy birthday, Mom! I hope I age half as gracefully as you. Probably the radiant inner beauty that shines through- living proof. This woman is amazing!

Now that we have established my mother's excellence, let's talk a bit about Zimt.

First: I will try to get more bars to Whole Foods on Cambie on either Sunday or tomorrow or Monday- it depends on when the labels will be finished... betcha didn't think of that! Label making is different from chocolate making- not so obviously. It is tough to think of all the components that go into a finished product when it is precisely that- a finished product. Things don't grow on shelves in supermarkets.

Second: Major thanks go to my family for all of their incredible patience and support and joy- they never complain. Ever. They just are happy to help me out and enjoy us spending time together. That I get to spend that much time with people who are so unthinkably giving and kind is mind boggling. Physically, the work is pretty demanding.  I mean, I do BodyRock, officially, but I also feel like I am getting in another work out during the work day. But really, if that is all I have to complain about- I am one lucky lady. I get to hang out with some wonderful, supportive people on a regular basis- thank you, Oma, Mum, Auntie, and Michelle! How unusual and great!

Third: I am getting a bit antsy about kitchen availability. Zimt is kind of at the bottom of the totem pole, only in the sense that if others need the kitchen, others get the kitchen. I am blessed, though, as I still often feel like I get to live there.  
Anyway... I find that times are getting kind of restricted, however, and this is obviously a concern. I have to sort out a solution, other than me working past the time set out in the schedule, and being really quite while chocolate making, so that I don't get caught. Pretty sneaky!

Other than that... I wish I could tell you more. But everything is top secret until further notice! Until then, I invite you to check out the Zimt Facebook page, which I am working on updating. Part of the online marketing I am trying to get a hang of. 

Have a lovely Saturday!