Foodie Pen Pal: April

Good morning! Hope everyone had a fantastic weekend- I know I did! I’ll be back to report on all of the fun details tomorrow. And just a quick note- I know that the blog looks a little weird right now. I finally moved to self-hosting over the weekend, but have to re-design my layout from scratch… which I haven’t had time to do. Please let me know if you are having any issues reading or commenting and I’ll do my best to fix them!

Today’s post is all about an awesome program that Lindsay from The Lean Green Bean puts together each month called Foodie Pen Pals. (I’ll include more information about the program at the bottom of this post.

After months of reading post after post from my fellow bloggers about these awesome care packages they were receiving from a foodie pen pal, I finally decided to participate. I was really excited to see what I would get, but equally (if not more so!) as excited to put together a package to send out!

I got my package from Taylor, an personal trainer who owns a women’s boot camp and online training community. How cool is that?

I was excited when my package arrived!

Here’s a closer look inside the box:

Included were 5 packets of Justin’s Chocolate Hazelnut Butter, vanilla almond tea, some almond clusters, and a mason jar with Taylor’s gooey chocolate chip cookie mix (which had oats and huge chunks of chocolate, amongst other things)!

She included directions for how to make the gooey chocolate chip cookies:

The recipe includes some of the chocolate hazelnut butter. I haven’t made them yet- but I’ll be honest- I’ve already made my way through one of the packets of nut butter. :)

I had the tea for the first time the other night, and it was fantastic! It made me remember how flavorful loose tea is, and that I should buy it more often!

My favorite item in the box? The almond clusters.

I have just one left….

Thank you, Taylor for the awesome package, and to Lindsay for taking the time to put this all together each month!

And now it’s time for some details about Foodie Penpals.  In case you’re a new reader, here’s a reminder of what the program is all about:
-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 residents.  Please note, Canadian Residents will be paired with other Canadians only. 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 interested in participating for May, please CLICK HERE to fill out the participation form and read the terms and conditions.
You must submit your information by May 4th as pairings will be emailed on May 5th!

*If you’re from somewhere besides the US, Canada or Europe and want to participate, send me an email and I’ll see if we get enough interest this month!

Have you ever participated in Foodie Pen Pals? What’s the coolest item you’ve received?



  1. I know it’s not “finalized” yet… but I like the new look so far! I can’t seem to remember now exactly what the old version looked like (ha!) BUT, I like that the new one looks so “bright”!! And your header picture/name really stands out nicely. Good job!!

    I also like that I can post a comment with my real name/blog, and not have to use my Twitter account (that was definitely weird).

    You’ve got me intrigued with this foodie pen pal thing. Maybe I’ll have to sign up after Blend :)

    • Thanks, love! I don’t think I’ll ever be 100% happy with the design. BUT, I will find something that I can live with. I want to design a completely new header, but have no idea what I want. And I’m not crazy about the layout of this theme in general.. we’ll see.
      So many people had issues with commenting, which bugged me. I’m really glad to know that you were able to do it with no problem- I hope that’s the case for everyone else!
      If you want to do the next Foodie Pen Pal, send Lindsay an email (She will also be at Blend!)- I think that she’ll be emailing out the names after Blend is over, and you’ll have to send your package by May 15th. You should do it!!

  2. I LOVE those almond bites and knew I had to send them to you! They come from my favorite cafe here in Charleston. Enjoy all the treats.
    Great look to the blog!

    • They were addictive! I just had the last one when I got home. I pretty much set down my bag, took off my jacket, and grabbed the last one. :)

  3. When I first clicked on your blog today I though it looked really nice! lol
    and I’m a Graphic Designer, so I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or bad thing ;)

    you have me intrigued by this Foodie Penpal… I think I might have to try it out!

    • Ha! Thanks! I’m a graphic designer too (well, not technically- but I have a BA in Graphic Design from 10 years ago!) and am SO picky about layouts. Like, it’s bad…

  4. Great box – it’s so much fun to get a box of mystery treats delivered, right?! :) I love that she send a recipe with the ingredients, very clever!

  5. What a fun box! I too LOVE those almond clusters. THey’re SO amazing!!

  6. I think my comment was spammed? Whoops.

    Well here it is, I love those almond clusters! so good!

  7. good luck with the move! i don’t envy that task. :(

    those nut clusters are soooo good! my mom always has them out at her house… and i always devour a whole jar before i leave.

  8. I am so freaking pumped to sign up for this penpal thing! What a brilliant idea!

  9. I did the foodie pen pal program for the first time this month. My pen pal bought Murphy some local dog treats!

  10. Love the new look! Will you give me your self-hosted insights this wknd?! I so want to move but am scared!

    Vanilla almond tea sounds yummy!

  11. Every month, I think of how awesome it would be when I see people’s reviews. But I’m afraid I’d fail miserably at organizing and mailing on my end. Haha. Those cookies look incredible!

Comments are welcome (and encouraged)!