In March I decided to join a program called the Foodie Pen Pals (FPP). I had read a few different posts about the program a while ago, and I loved the idea of getting new and different foods from someone in another part of the country, and sharing some things with another.
The person I got to send treats to was Lisa, a physician assistant in Texas, who is on a vegan, gluten-free diet. I have to admit, I don’t have any experience with veganism, and very little experience with gluten-free diets. My grandfather had Celiac Disease towards the end of his life, and at the time there was hardly anything that was gluten-free that was close to tasty. Nowadays, it’s easier to eat gluten-free. So the program forced me out of my comfort zone to find goodies to send to Lisa, but it was a fun shopping trip.
I received an email from Cindy introducing herself to me as my FPP and she had asked a little bit about me so she could send me goodies from her home in Florida. I’m pretty much open to try anything, and I told her so. I was excited to get my package in the mail:
Inside was goodies from Plant City, Fla., the “strawberry capital of Florida” (strawberry rhubarb jam? Yes, please!), Amish made honey (how’d she know I was running low on honey?), chocolates, Pim’s cookies, Jelly Belly jelly beans, and one item that actually caught my breath.
Growing up, my grandparents on my dad’s side would give us a sugar egg every year around Easter. I always loved my sugar eggs because I was enthralled with how they got the little chick (or bunny) inside this fragile sugar egg. Cindy had included one of those eggs just as a little extra Easter spirit.
She included a jar of Cannon’s Country Gourmet Strawberry Rhubarb jam. I couldn’t wait to break open into this (have I mentioned how much I love anything strawberry?) and had some with my whole wheat biscuits and chili Sunday last weekend. It’s delicious–not too sweet, just right.
The chocolates are from Angell & Phelps, a small family-owned chocolate factory in Cindy’s hometown. Cindy said it was a lot like a trip down memory lane when she visits the shop.
The Pim’s cookies are European biscuits with raspberry preserves on top and a layer of chocolate coating the top. They look delicious!
The entire box has been enticing me throughout the month of March. I haven’t been able to really try much of the contents because I gave up chocolate for Lent. But now I’m savoring every piece of this silky, smooth chocolate.
Want to get in on the action? You can still sign up for April!
Here are a few details about Foodie Penpals.
-On the 5th of every month, you will receive your penpal pairing via email. It will be your responsibility to contact your penpal and get their mailing address and any other information you might need like allergies or dietary restrictions.
-You will have until the 15th of the month to put your box of goodies in the mail. On the last day of the month, you will post about the goodies you received from your penpal!
-The boxes are to be filled with fun foodie things, local food items or even homemade treats! The spending limit is $15. The box must also include something written. This can be anything from a note explaining what’s in the box, to a fun recipe…use your imagination!
-You are responsible for figuring out the best way to ship your items depending on their size and how fragile they are. (Don’t forget about flat rate boxes!)
-Foodie Penpals is open to blog readers as well as bloggers. If you’re a reader and you get paired with a blogger, you are to write a short guest post for your penpal to post on their blog about what you received. If two readers are paired together, neither needs to worry about writing a post for that month.
-Foodie Penplas is open to US, Canadian & European residents. Please note, Canadian Residents will be paired with other Canadians only. Same with Europeans. We’ve determined things might get too slow and backed up if we’re trying to send foods through customs across the border from US to Canada and vice versa.
If you’re from the US or Canada and are in participating for November, please CLICK HERE (www.theleangreenbean.com/foodie-penpals/) to fill out the participation form and read the terms and conditions.
You must submit your information by April 4th as pairings will be emailed on April 5th!
*If you’re from Europe, please CLICK HERE (www.thisisrocksalt.com/foodie-penpals/) to signup.