Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Button on the Sidebar 

You'll notice a small change on the sidebar - a donation button.

This isn't meant to co-erce donations out of you, but a number of people have asked how they can help get us open faster.

The best way is to find several small investors or a big investor who will buy stock. So far, we found one solid investor and many potential ones who haven't committed yet.

The next best way is to secure a loan. That is proving hard because both Manager and I are coming up from some fairly deep poverty. I hadn't realized just how poor we were until we started this. It was kind of a hard shock to realize that even though I think we're doing very well, according to all kinds of governemnt documents and bank referral sheets and such - we've been living below the poverty level for a very long time. But a low paying government job, and owning my own home (with equity, no less!), and having no outstanding debts other than the mortgage and college loans and monthly expenses doesn't make us a good credit risk.

Then, the next best way after that is to start marketing now. Within the next few days, you'll see a new button on that sidebar that will take you to our Cafe Press offerings: T-shirts (as large as Cafe Press will make them), aprons, mugs, travel mugs, and tote bags with unique art on them - and our name, of course! We'll have a calendar up, and soon a cookbook of yummy recipes.

We're also working on finding a publisher for our first year towards opening. This blog is being used by economics and business professors at several colleges, and a book format with all the behind-the-scenes stuff that doesn't get posted here (spread sheets, pro formas, correspondence, special recipes as they evolve, an index, and even more photos) will make a handy textbook for them to use in class. It will be much more convenient than logging on and scrolling through the archives to find things. Even if we can't find a regular publisher, we can still offer it through a POD publisher like Lulu.com.

The next way is to ask for donations towards our opening. And everyone who donates - when we reach opening, you'll get a special gift and be invited to a special "Investors Sneak Preview Opening Party", and if we can afford it, more things like maybe a button or T-shirt or mug or something that identifies you as an Cracked Cauldron Important Investor.

We can't guarantee it'll be a fast thing, but we will open.

So, between Manger offering her services as a Personal Chef, and the Donate Button and the Cafe Press and the books, we should be able to scrounge up enough money to open.

And we so hope to see as many of you there as can fit in - we'll stagger the shifts if we have to so we can meet all of you who have offered some really helpful advice over the past months - either directly or inadvertently through your own blogs. Trust me, we remember you all, and thank you from the bottom of our mixing bowls!

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