Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Tasty Tuesday ~ Cocoa Bar & Life Off Line GIVEAWAY

In case I feel like I miss the holidays, a few extra pounds are with me as a reminder. It's funny how too much of a good thing produces the opposite of what we want and celebrate - health & happiness. Online information about food and recipes also fit in to the "good things" category, but too much leaves us unhealthy, if all we do is take it in without getting out of the virtual kitchen and into the real one.

How has your "online life" affected your real life "offline"? The topic usually stirs us strong feelings, mostly based on our own experience. When it comes to my real  life kitchen to table, I admit I have access to more recipes and tutorials than I EVER did before ... but I'm afraid that a hidden camera might reveal that I actually cook less. That doesn't make sense! If you have cable tv you can access a wide range of "chef mentors" on the Food Network and pick the personality that most appeals to you. New apps for iphones literally let us carry recipes with us. It's funny that, despite all of the help online and electronically, it seems like people in general cook less and know less about making food a good part of life. 

Where's the gap between all of the awesome motivation online and the actual pots and pans in our cabinets? Yesterday our 17 yr old JoHanna had a younger friend over to do some "wear an apron-flour on your face-read the recipe" cooking. I'll admit, ingredients had to be thrown out, windows had to be opened, and the smoke alarm did go off ... but a lot of "real" things happened in our kitchen offline. The recipe book was splattered with batter .... and memories. Notes were written on the page about discoveries ... in 17 yr old handwriting. Problem solving. Experimenting. Talking. Laughing. Creating (they modified the recipe, of course). Mentoring. Friendship. And not least of all ... some great food. And when it was all over and cleaned up (floor and counters), I posted pictures on Facebook and shared them with friends who wanted to know what ebelskivers are. I sent the pictures to my mother-in-law who gave the gift that inspired the cooking, but lives too far away to see the real thing. Life Online complements Life Offline.

Perhaps the kitchen is the perfect place to show us that the best recipes are those that use good portions of a variety of ingredients. Life online can infuse and inspire real cooking and real relationships in healthy, even delicious, ways off line. Proverbs 31:14 tells us that excellent women get their "food from afar," so this is nothing new!  Let's not lose our motivation, our creativity, and our confidence somewhere between virtual ideas and actual kitchens. 

Recipe carnivals, food blogs, coupon blogs, and meal planning sites are awesome resources. Do you have favorites? Let's be good stewards of this richness we have access to. Let's feed our families, our friends, our guests, the needy, and ourselves well. 

Here's a picture of a great winter party idea that I saw at a real friend's December open house. CUTE way to serve hot chocolate!

Do you need to get back to REAL COOKING?

Ideas to take virtual to real:
  • Print out a recipe you find online and make it.
  • Does a recipe make you think of a friend? Forward it with a note of encouragement.
  • Get together & cook with a friend, each bringing a new online recipe & ingredients.
  • Use digital scrapbooking software or online publisher & make a family recipe book.
  • Choose one new recipe each week to try out & serve.
  • Use online resources to find the best recipes to take to needy friends & then take one.

Today's Life Off Line Challenge:
  • Virtual resources complement real ones. Take out a hard copy recipe book and rediscover some "oldies." Look for splatters reminding you of when you cooked and who you served. See what the handwriting reminds you of. 
  • Have a favorite online resource? Write a recipe you discovered there on to an index card or paper, then include it in your recipe book or box, or mail it to a friend in a "real" envelope. ;)
Leave a comment today telling me what your favorite online food resource is ... recipe blog, meal planning site, cooking carnival ... what online resource motivates you? You'll be entered to win a 2012 Family Meal Planner/Calendar from the Gooseberry Patch. I'll announce the winner Thursday! 

22 COMMENTS ~ Click here to leave a COMMENT:

Faithimagined said...

I love this article. And, yes, I'm carrying a few pounds from the holidays. I should shake them off in a couple of weeks :)

There does seem to be a hitch between having information and applying it. I pray that the stuff in my brain doesn't outweigh my experiences. I pray that for my children also. I want to shelter them, but I also want them to grow.

Julie_Sanders said...

Love how you said that ... "that the stuff in my brain doesn't outweigh my experiences" - I'm praying that with you! Julie Sanders

From: Disqus <>
To: jeffjulmission@yahoo.com
Sent: Monday, January 2, 2012 11:04 PM
Subject: [comehaveapeace] Re: Come Have a Peace

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Taralwalker said...

There are a lot of places I like to go - a fun one is Foodgawker.com. Then when I find things I like I Pin them on Pinterest. The reason I LOOOOVE that so much is because I can easily go back and find the website where I found the recipe... I've made several things I "pinned." In fact, I tried 2 new recipes this weekend at a friend's house! :-)

Kmitch1352 said...

I love the recipes I find on "Come Have A Peace"!  I have tried several of them out on my husband and he likes them as well.  Another resource is the local TV station web site (WBIR).  When they make something that looks tasty, I get online and print the recipe.  I am searching for more ideas, so I will check back here to see what others post.

Pamela Seay @ Chaos Cottage said...

Taste of Home has probably been my favorite food website since the beginning of my collecting  recipes I find online.  I have also subscribed to their magazine off and on for years.  They're the type of magazine you don't throw away. 

Organizedhome.com has free printables that are wonderful for menu planning and keeping track of your freezer inventory and a lot of other things.  I love to plan my menus for my family and I post them every week on my blog.  I'm a planner but not a very good follower through-er.  LOL

Anglovesrandy said...

I love Kraft Food & Family www.kraftrecipes.com - I have a very cute, but picky husband and I don't cook much, but they have great simple ideas.   And I am all about simple!

Tgalligher said...

I use e-mealz.com. This wonderful website gives me 7 dinners each week based on Kroger's sale items, it even includes a shopping list and the recipes. It has taken away the issue of whats for dinner tonight and helps me to save a lot of money on groceries.

Kelly said...

My favorite online sourse is probably Taste of Home.  It's easy to find recipes using particular ingredients and there various ways of searching (ingredients/type of meal/method of preparing etc).  But, it's true, in real life I MUST have the recipe in hand if it's ever going to get to our table.  So the majority of our meals come from cookbooks or recipes that I've printed off and can actually remember where I put them!

Morgan Maria I said...

Awesome post, Julie! Never really considered such specifics when combining on-line and off-line. Sounds like you and the girls made some wonderful memories! I've got a couple of well-loved recipes with all the splatters to prove it. It's fun remembering the dinners they accompanied and the friends we shared them with! A very happy AND healthy New Year to you!

Margaret said...

I love allrecipes.com when I'm stuck on ideas!

LeAnn said...

I have to admit that some of my most fabulous successes over the past couple of years have actually come from Come, Have a Peace! So, thank you!! I have a physical cookbook that we created in a Sunday School class many years ago - it is my favorite. However, I also have many recipe sites bookmarked in my browser. The one that has given me the second most suggestions that have inspired me (besides your Tasty Tuesdays) would be She Cooks (www.shecooks.org) from LeAnn Rice. I think it has something to do with her name (especially the spelling!).

Oh, Julie, the struggle for balance in a world consumed by life online... it is so hard. It has been hard enough finding the correct balance for myself - I am struggling even more teaching our kids the things to watch out for because their generation thinks nothing of it. I am eager to read more about it from your upcoming blogs.

I agree with you on the hot cocoa bar idea! Thanks for sharing.

Julie_Sanders said...

so glad to hear that Tasty Tuesdays are inspiring and helpful. Sometimes it helps me to be accountable I haven't fallen "off the wagon" into frozen pizza land. ;)
I'm living the offline/online struggle for balance right with you. I'm finding that working through it with my kids is doing a LOT to make me examine my own habits and practices. I remember being told that what I do in moderation, my kids will do in excess. Those words haunt me. I hope to at least "make us think" in this Life Off Line series. Julie Sanders

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To: jeffjulmission@yahoo.com
Sent: Tuesday, January 3, 2012 4:54 PM
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Julie_Sanders said...

Oh, that makes my heart happy, Karen. :) And I'm loving the resources people are sharing! Julie Sanders

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To: jeffjulmission@yahoo.com
Sent: Tuesday, January 3, 2012 11:03 AM
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Roxie said...

I'm really enjoying reading your series Life OFF Line series!  Thanks so much for encouraging us that there is Life OFF Line.  One of my favorite Blogs to visit for recipes is called "Eat at Home"...she offers menu plans each week, ingredient spotlights, etc...I have made many recipes from her blog that my family likes.

Mary Joy Pershing said...

Excellent article!  I love cooking with our kids.  I am really excited about getting a new copy of the new Betty Crocker Cookbook that is the update of their old one.  Betty Crocker was my very first cook book that my grandmother gave me for my college graduation.  I used it until it completely fell apart.  This one is very similar and I am buying a copy at the end of January (budgeting you know).  My favorite on-line sites are Gooseberry Patch, Bettycrocker.com, and dLife.com.  But I always print out the recipes I find and add them to a binder that is my cookbook made from recipes people give me and that I find online.  I make all kinds of notes on the pages.  Love doing that!

Thanks for the great inspiration and I would love to have a copy of this!!!  What a great resource!

Mary Joy Pershing said...

I almost forgot about them!  Use them all the time too!

Barbie said...

I was just introduced to pintrest - I've been saving other peoples favorite ideas hoping to make them soon.  Julie, I don't know if you remember but you made pickles wrapped with ham and cream cheese at a party when you lived out here in Clarks Summit.  I just had someone last week ask me for that recipe - makes me think of you every time.  I enjoy your blog :)

Trudi said...

I'm using BigOven app to help organize appetizers that I'm making for a business function of Mikes. I do like the FlyLady to motivate me. She has positive ways if saying "Just Do It!!!"

Lortons said...

My favorite online recipe resource is my GRANDMA and my cousins! I just message them all on facebook and ask how they make certain dishes. I get old family recipes and fun new meal ideas. :) 

Julie_Sanders said...

I do remember!!! I need to make those and post them on a Tasty Tuesday! :)

Julie Sanders

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To: jeffjulmission@yahoo.com
Sent: Wednesday, January 4, 2012 6:11 PM
Subject: [comehaveapeace] Re: Come Have a Peace

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Julie@comehaveapeace said...

Roxie, you're the winner of the 2012 Family Planner/Calendar!  Just email me your info at jeffjulmission@yahoo.com, and I'll put that in the mail to you ... as soon as it comes to my mail first. :) It should be quick. Enjoy planning and cooking!!!

Julie_Sanders said...

Hi Roxie, your calendar has arrived! I didn't take off the plastic ...
;) but it looks like so much fun and a great tool. I want to get it in
the mail to you asap, but I have misplaced your mailing address! Sounds
like I need a new organizing tool. :) Could you email it to me again at
jeffjulmission@yahoo.com? I will get it in the mail to you right away.