I don't even know how to begin to describe a day that includes being on The Oprah Winfrey Show. Like many of you, I have revered Oprah for my entire adult life. I felt lucky just to meet her a few years ago when my husband was on her show. But I could never imagine sitting on her set talking to her about a book I had written.
As if that weren't enough to make me nervous, when I arrived at the studio, the producers of the show had a surprise for me. They told me that, three weeks ago, they sent copies of Deceptively DeliciousSM to Chicago-area mothers and asked them to try the recipes on their families. And the biggest surprise of all? Those moms were going to be in the studio audience today! I was so nervous! I knew all my friends and family loved the recipes, but now my book was getting a real test by people I didn't know.
Did I have butterflies before the show? You bet. But believe it or not, I actually relaxed and started having fun even before the cameras came on—once Oprah came out and gave me a warm and delicious hug.
Then the show started, and it was an hour of pure joy.
There was the hilarious moment when Oprah told all of us that she loves to puree foods and store them—and that she even has a vacuum sealer (though, she could not believe that I don't have one). I mean, who would think that Oprah Winfrey loves to puree food and store it?! And, to my sheer delight and amazement, she said she had made one of my recipes—Scrambled Eggs (with Cauliflower)—at home just days ago. Best of all, there was a whole lot of sampling of some of my favorite foods with pureed veggies and fruits in them. Oprah was so excited about the food, she went out into the audience and started handing out Chicken Nuggets (with Broccoli) and Doughnuts (with Sweet Potato).
And those moms who tried out the recipes at home? Well, after my chat with Oprah, I went and sat in the audience to watch Dr. Mehmet Oz's segment, and even before I could sit down, they all told me how the book had changed their lives!
It really brought it all home to me. I have to confess, I was unsure for a long time about creating this book. I have three young kids, a nonprofit that I run, and a husband who travels constantly. I wasn't looking for another project. But learning that these families had changed their children's eating habits made every minute I spent on this book worthwhile.
People are already asking me what my favorite moment of the show was. I won't lie: Hearing Oprah, my hero, call my book "life-changing" made me feel 10 feet tall. But what was truly inspiring was hearing that both Oprah and these families had cooked from the book, that they found the recipes quick and easy, and that the food was changing their own lives.
My personal motto for this book has been "one family at a time." After today, I feel like I might just do a little better than that.