and now you’re here.

playing the grocery game

This morning, Lu woke up sweetly, smiling at us wide. (And at 7:00 in the morning, instead of 6, thank you.) She cuddled into our bed, asking for us to read books to her, one after the other. Danny and I took turns, warm under the white blanket, reading her Sylvester and the Magic Pebble, Owl Babies, and Best Friends for Frances, among others. She listened intently, happy to be between us. The sun came through the windows and I felt at peace in the world.

Downstairs, she spun around the room in her pink nightgown. Normally, she asks for Shipoopi right away, so we can start the day with dancing. Today, however, she asked if we could play the grocery game. She’s madly in love with this simple card game for kids. We consult our grocery list, with pictures so she can associate letters with favorite foods, and pick out the squares to put them in our shopping baskets. She gobbles up the watermelon every time.

We’ve played enough that she has every list memorized, of course. So this morning, we moved onto a new game. “Mama, you pick the foods you want to put together. We’ll put them in a pot and cook them. It will be our recipe!” I laughed out loud, happy to help her move chicken, broccoli, and rice into the pot filled with raspberry candy. First thing in the morning, she’s thinking recipes.

That’s our kid.

Later, over breakfast, we asked her about  her day. She talked about what might happen. And then she turned to me and said, “How’s the cookbook, Mama?”

She knew. Today’s publication day. Our cookbook, Gluten-Free Girl Every Day, is born into the world today.

As I wrote about last week, bringing out a cookbook can be a potent time. There are so many hopes and fears. There has been a bit of tumult inside me lately, following a tough winter, our car being stolen, and a thousand emails that must be written now. It’s not a surprise this time. This is my third book. With my first book, I honestly thought I was going to get on the Oprah show. (Oprah would love me!) Now, Oprah doesn’t interview authors anymore and her original show is gone. This time, I watch all those hopes and fears rise up and try to let them go.

I’m lucky. So lucky. And every morning this week, I’ve been walking in the sun and rain, listening to Pema Chodron talk about getting unstuck.  She’s so sane, so funny, and so grounding. Those 45 minutes with her in my ear and cherry trees in bloom above my head as I walk are keeping me breathing these days.

So is Danny, of course. I don’t how that man is so naturally sane but I’m so damned grateful for it. He knows how to calm me with a hand on the shoulder and a few words in my ear.

Yesterday, Lucy and I were on the front porch, in the sunlight. I was showing her how to flip her little plastic egg in her little green skillet, without a spatula. We were about to move to the trampoline to jump together. She asked if I’d do a certain trick on the trampoline when we moved over there to jump. I told her that, sadly, my back wouldn’t let me do it. She asked me why. So, lightly, I told her about the terrible car accident I had in 2003, how the green car was smashed, how lucky Mama is to be alive.

She thought for a moment and said, “And now you’re here, teaching your kid how to flip an egg.”

Yes, my love. Yes.

That kid keeps me here too. Before she was born, I believed that people are essentially good. After having Lucy in my life, I know it.

So, our cookbook is out. The hopes and fears can stop now. It just is.

We hope you might buy it. We hope you cook from it. We hope you tell your friends and family, through Facebook, emails, Twitter, postcards, Google+, text messages, Amazon reviews, telephone calls, photos on Instagram, and mostly in conversations at the kitchen table with people you love.

We’re very much looking forward to meeting some of you soon. Check out the beginning of our book tour page — Seattle, Portland, and New York  — which we will be filling in as we go. We’re launching something next week that, fingers crossed, might bring us to meet more of you in this country.

But for now, I’m going to stop talking about the book for awhile. It’s yours, not ours anymore. Enjoy.




30 comments on “and now you’re here.

  1. Lee Anne

    I can’t wait to get your cookbook! I would love to meet you in person some day. In March, my sweetie and I took the ferry over to Vashon. It was the first time for both of us to go there. He’s been here all his life and I’ve been here since 1968. Weird how neither one of us had been there before. We even found the Bicycle Tree!! I was a glorious day and we got some fabulous pics of Mt. Rainier.
    Your blog has been such an inspiration and is one of my faves. Please don’t ever move or quit the blog *L* I love your stories about Lu..when can we see her sweet little face?
    Good luck with your book.

    Lee Anne

  2. Melissa Nunes

    I’m not Gluten free, honestly, I’m not even sure what it means. I don’t cook much anymore, my child is grown and other family has moved on. But I CAN’T WAIT to buy this book. I’ve never met you but I’m proud of the life you have created. I’m going to celebrate that with an Amazon order. Well done!

  3. Kate gardner

    The grocery shopping game was one of my kids favourites when they were growing up. At 16 and 21 the lessons they learnt playing this game and the fun they had in the kitchen cooking have been key to helping them develope good healthy eating habits. Congratulations on the new book. Really looking forward to mine arriving.

  4. Laurie Barrie

    These moments will be cherished for a lifetime. Being in the “empty-nest” phase there are times that I miss the pitter-patter of little feet tromping down the wood stairs, watching my daughter prance around the living room pretending to be a princess, the hours upon hours of sitting through piano and dance recitals. What I wouldn’t give to be sitting there again. Enjoy every moment with your little Lu!

  5. Lara

    I just saw the message from Amazon that your book is now on its way to me. Hooray! I am looking forward to it so very much. Congratulations and thank you for the brightness you shine out into the world.

  6. Margaret

    Book just arrived in the mail. I love it!!!!!
    I am sitting here reading it cover to cover and thinking about what I will make first, and next and next………

  7. Emma Galloway

    I’m in the final stages of turning in my manuscript for my first book and I can only imagine what an overwhelming feeling it must be for yours to now be out. A huge congratulations all the way from the bottom of the world. I can’t wait to get my own copy, I just know it is going to be amazing. Lotsa love xx

  8. Eliza B

    What a wonderful and sweet story. I love that your daughter is becoming as obsessed with recipes as you guys are. She seems like a true joy. Quite excited for the new cookbook as well. I hope you can make it to many more parts of the country!

  9. Meghan

    you guys are so great. i love this blog and i love your attitude. and that kid! she is so funny! thanks for being a happy place on this internet.

  10. Lara

    I received your book right in the middle of moving to our first house and I have already spent a couple hours reading recipes (when I probably should have been pack or unpacking). I love it! Thank you for all those minutes, hours, days, weeks and months of your cooking, writting, and food love!

  11. Laura

    I am in love with your life (as well as your blog)! I’m sure your new book is fantastic. How could it possibly not be? xoxo

  12. Manoli García

    Oprah WOULD love you! Who wouldn’t?? Many congratulations on the book and on your beautiful family. You have the courage to create step by step the life you want. Rest assure one copy of your book will be sitting on my table in Barcelona. Kind regards, Shauna.

  13. merry jennifer

    I’m so happy for you all. I can only imagine the excitement that pushing one’s book out into the world must invoke. I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy. Sending you three much love…xo

  14. Mary Hodges

    Amazon delivered your wonderful creation yesterday but my husband has been devouring the comforting foods from his past and I am happy he is sharing as he reads. Oh how I wish there was an e-book version so we could have it with us at the Jovial “experience”. Thanks for writing your books as well as the blog!


  15. Jan

    Received your book two days ago! I read a lot of it that day, and already had dinner cooking. Last night I attended a birthday party for dinner. Finally I can try a recipe tonight!
    Wish you were stopping off in San Francisco on your book tour !

  16. Ginny

    I got it yesterday afternoon!! By midnight I had read through it twice, and Shauna – you hit it bang on the mark. Everything you hoped it would be, it is. Your first book was a symphony, the second a concerto for gluten-free girl and the chef, and this one? Bluesy music playing in the background, sometimes country swing, but always fun and relaxing.
    You have changed my eating so much over the last few years. I truly live gluten-free, not just eat gluten-free products. My son asked me if I was going to make everything that I eat, and I said that it was looking like that.
    Thank you again for all your pioneering work for gf.

  17. Carla Rollins

    Love, love, love your new book. Yesterday it arrived hot off the press. I sat in a sunny spot and read it cover to cover. I love your stories most particularly about your daughter. The love you emit for her and your hubcap is fabulous. I get a very peaceful feeling within the covers of your book! Today I spent some of my morning making your bread, hamburg buns and of course the chocolate chip cookies. I wanted to trick my husband (he’s a hesitant gluten free guy) so I made them as I make my own with walnuts. He and all his employees loved them! Everyone fooled, perfect. I took them up to the Town Hall and passed them out – rave reviews! By the way, your daughter is so darn cute. Tell her my book arrived all the way over here in Maine….her Mommy is so famous allllll across the country! Sunday I’ll be in Berkeley with my tiny grandaughters for two weeks. I had your book sent to my daughter in law out there. When Nani is there, we bake! I thank you for your efforts.

  18. Tara

    Shauna, I bought your cookbook today and I’ve spent the afternoon planning our menu for the week from it’s pages! The photos are lovely and I love how much joy you and Danny bring to your time in the kitchen. I know you have both poured your hearts and souls into this cookbook…try not to worry so much…it’s going to be a huge success! 🙂

  19. Cindy

    My copy of your book arrived today! A day earlier than Amazon quoted. What a great surprise.
    Its beautiful! I love the pictures of you and Danny and Lu. And the pictures of Vashon Island. What a special place.
    Like the other comments, I don’t know what to make first! So many yummy looking recipes! Thank you!!!

  20. Melissa

    I had pre-ordered your new book, and received it yesterday. I enjoyed flipping through the pages over my morning coffee. I felt like you were right in the kitchen with me. Your writing style is so down to earth and real. I appreciate the peek into your life that you share with your readers. I can’t wait to cook some of those delicious and inspiring recipes!!!

  21. Claudia

    I got the book today. It’s beautiful, well done. I can’t wait to try. Give me a few weeks and I’ll let you know how it works.

  22. Christa

    I bought the cookbook yesterday (Amazon said it should be here Friday!) I am so excited for the weekend. I will have the chance (aka time) to make atleast 1 delicious item! Thanks for taking the time to share!

  23. Basilqueen

    Dear Shauna and dear chef! Congratulations on your creativity, on your strength and will power to balance love, life and work. It will be such a great treat for me to buy your book and enjoy reading and cooking from it. Thank you for sharing a part of your life with my family through stories and recipes. Basilqueen and her family 🙂 Do come to Montreal one day!

  24. Grace

    I just wanted to say how much I love your blog. I love the food, I love your truthful words; your simple stories. Thank you. Thank you for your openness. I love it.
    And I’m craving your new cookbook…
    love, grace

  25. Sally Chippendale

    Congratulations on your third book! I can’t wait to read it. It gives me a sense of peace knowing there are parents in the world who truly adore their children and speak of them as the blessings they are. Another reason I enjoy reading your posts.

  26. Kimberly

    The cookbook arrived today!!!! It’s beautiful in every way – simple, rich, compassionate, and healthy. We can’t wait to start cooking through it!! Thank you!!!

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