May Foodie Penpals

Dana has been participating in the Foodie Penpals program run by Lindsey from the Lean Green Bean for a few months now. I was planning to sign up for April, but I missed the deadline. This time, our roles were reversed, and I was matched with Kristen from Pudgie Pies.


Lancaster Vanilla and Caramel Soft Cremes: These were fantastic. I mean, how could they not be? Every time I opened the bag, Rascal came running to beg. I didn’t give him any, of course, but I did let him try a piece of…

Venison jerky: I love jerky when it’s done right, but the good stuff can be difficult to find – there are too many dry, tough jerkies out there. This, though? I was shocked by how tender it was. I’ve only eaten venison a few times in my life, but I’m definitely starting to develop a taste for it.

Maple candy: I love maple. Who doesn’t? Terrorists, that’s who.

Amish soft pretzel mix: I’m planning to use this over the weekend. Being from the Philly area and living in Pittsburgh means I don’t often get to enjoy a soft pretzel too often. I’ve also never made my own before, so I’m really looking forward to these.

Biscoff spread: I had a feeling this would show up in my box – Kristen mentioned that she had received something in an early box that she now sends to everyone, and knowing how delicious Biscoff/cookie butter/speculoos is, I figured this would be it. I haven’t opened this jar yet, but when I do it’ll go quickly.

“Chicken Poop” lip balm: I never buy lip balm for myself, but I probably ought to start – especially in the winter months. This stuff is pretty great.

Coconut oil: While we were exchanging e-mails about our tastes, I mentioned that I like the flavor of coconut, but can’t stand the texture of it when shredded. Ergo, coconut oil. Dana uses this pretty much constantly, so I gave it to her. It’ll almost certainly go into a few meals and baked goods that she gives me.

Turkish taffy: I’m nowhere near as big of a fan of chocolate as Dana, our roommates, or pretty much everyone I’ve ever met. I like it, don’t get me wrong. I’m just not obsessed with it. But this was good.

Pocky: I would say this was my least favorite item in the box, but that’s more to do with the other stuff being great than not liking it.

Blueberry whirl lollipop: Haven’t tried yet, but looks good.

Also included were a note pad and a book of s’more recipes (which may come in handy since we’re going camping in a couple of weeks). Thanks for a great first experience with the Foodie Penpal program, Kristen!

If you’d like to sign up, check it out here. You don’t need to have a blog to participate.


April Foodie Penpals!

For the third month in a row, I participated in the foodie penpals exchange run by Lindsey from The Lean Green Bean. For those of you just tuning in- each person who signs up gets paired with someone else and the two of you exchange boxes of goodies! This month I was paired with Denise from

Side note: the day the box came, Rascal chased our neighbors’ cat up a tree. So the goodies were an especially good treat after handling that fiasco.

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What I got:

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“Slap ya mama” seasoning: I can’t get over how such a basic blend of spices can taste so good! I’ve using this on scrambled tofu to give myself a break on sriracha

Dark chocolate bunny: There is something about smashing these to pieces before eating them that makes them way more satisfying to consume than your average chocolate bar.

Cran-Blueberry Crunch: Kyle and I have both been munching on these. I’m surprised we still have any! They’re so sweet and satisfying!

Ginger-Sesame Caramel Popcorn: I only just dug into this last night- but it’s great! I hate how heavy caramel corn normally is, so this lightened up version was really welcome.

Gold Brick Eggs: I never buy milk chocolate for myself- I forgot just how tasty it is when it just melts in your mouth.

Thanks, Denise! I really enjoyed everything you sent me!

P.S. Remember that tomato marmalade Jessica sent me last month? I eventually just decided to put it on toast. It actually had chucks of tomato and lemon peel but the acidity of both was balanced out with sweetness. Bliss on toast 🙂

Want to try it yourself? You don’t need to have a blog! Click over here to check it out!


March Foodie Penpals!

Happy Monday!


I participated in Foodie Penpals again this month! It’s hosted by Lindsey at The Lean Green Bean. If this looks like fun (and I promise it is!) you should def pop over and consider participating.

And yet again, I got paired with a pretty awesome lady. Jessica blogs over at Little Apartment Big City.

Now I’m a bit of a challenge to buy for- especially since I’ve been doing my best to eliminate lactose entirely (more on that tomorrow). But Jessica did a wonderful job!


Items included:
– Cinnamon pita chips: these things are like crack! I’ve legit been rationing them.
– Avocado oil potato chips: I haven’t tried these yet, but I don’t know how they couldn’t be awesome
– Granola: This is something I never buy for myself, so I was really excited to get some (also I now have a good excuse to but myself non dairy yogurt!)

– Tomato Marmalade- I’ve never seen anything like this before but I’m really excited to crack it open
– Green Tea Candy- I think we might be kindred spirits because I sent Jessica a whole bag of these exact same candies

– Cookies: These are some of the best healthy cookies I’ve ever had! Perfect balance of oats and dried fruit.
– Ginger Chocolate Bar: I told Jessica about my love for both these things! I’m still working through my chocolate stash but I can’t wait to try this!
– Wasabi Peanuts: I’ve been on quite the wasabi kick recently so these were perfect!

Definitely a great haul! Thanks so much, Jessica!

February Foodie Penpals!

I started following Lindsey at The Lean Green Bean a year or so ago. Initially I found her site when I was looking for more information about the benefits of walking 10k steps per day (which I’m now a huge proponent of).

In addition to learning about Lindsey’s Fitbit journey, I found her blog to have a wealth of information about health eating and exercise. She also runs this really sweet program called “Foodie Penpals.”

Which brings me to this post. In the beginning of the month I signed up for the program and a few days later got paired with another blogger. We each sent each other a box of goodies.

Natalie from Free Range Human was my pal this month, and she sent me a pretty awesome box. (And if you’re reading this Natalie, thank you so much!)

The box:

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  • Bear Naked Granola: Granola was actually on my grocery list for this week because I haven’t had it in a while. Also, look at the protein count!
  • Dark Chocolate Dreams Peanut Butter: I have stared at this so many times at the store and then not bought it. One spoonful and I realized how silly I’ve been
  • Thrifty Bee Honey: mm so good, it has been going in my oatmeal all week!
  • Reese’s Hearts: I have been savoring these (holiday Reese’s > everyday Reese’s, every time)
  • Nature’s Harvest poppin’ sweet nut popcorn: unfortunately this exploded in the box (and Rascal subsequently gnawed through the corner of the box- I think his popcorn problem is my fault). The rest of it was gone in days!

I really enjoyed everything in the box and I cannot wait to do this again next month.

Oh, and Godiva was really excited about it too.

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Possibly too excited…

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ps. No need to have a blog to participate. Just visit this page to sign up!