Dispensing Happiness

A good cook is like a sorceress who dispenses happiness.-Elsa Schiapirelli

That's me, the magical good cook.

Borrowing from my friend Dexygus, I've created my own food blog.

Read of my exploits in the kitchen! Salivate over the descriptions of fabulous desserts and savory meals I've concocted!

No, seriously...go ahead. It'll make my day.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Blogging by Mail: The Holiday Edition

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Sign-up's are now closed.

Ok...after a week without Internet access, entries have been processed, bloggers have been matched, and swap information has been sent out.

If you've yet to receive an email from me containing your partner's particulars, CHECK YOUR SPAM FILTER OR JUNK MAIL FOLDER. Several people have had over-helpful anti-spam filters stop mail from me. If you don't find it there, write to me IMMEDIATELY at thehappysorceress at gmail dot com.

This time, we have 70 bloggers signed up!

66 packages have shipped!! Just 4 to go...

59 packages have arrived!!!!

Below is the list of participants, followed by whatever customs requirements we were able to dig up. If you happen to know the rules for one of the countries still missing that information, please share with the class!

Here comes the fun part: putting together your package. We're celebrating the Holiday season...whatever that may mean to you. I've done my best to match everyone up based on several criteria, including pet ownership.

If you're wondering what to include in your package, here's a few ideas.

Try filling your box with items produced locally, or important to your area. Toss in the food section of your local paper, or a church or junior league cookbook.

Include those things which represent your feelings toward the holiday you celebrate...ornaments, music (CDs make great swap gifts), cake or cookie decorations, candy.

If you're shipping within country, baked goods are always a hit. If you're sending your package internationally, this isn't always an option, unless you're comfortable paying for a faster delivery service.

If you can't ship your great-grandmother's famous oatmeal cookies, send along the recipe, instead!

Think of your favorite foods...what would most love to share with a new friend?

If you'd like to include a photo of yourself, go for it.

And a letter, explaining all those goodies, is always appreciated!

When it comes time to ship that package, be prepared: it can cost a lot. Even domestic mail can be expensive, so try to pack as much as you can without letting your box get too heavy.

If you find you simply can't leave out those ten extra items, consider sending your package on the slow boat to it's destination. This can take up to two months, depending on the country, so again: pack accordingly. Baked goods aren't likely to survive a trip like that!

Many have asked, so I'll add this: most of us like the thrill of the 'secret Santa'. Keeping our identities a secret until the big reveal appeals to most bloggers, but if you really want to let your person know who you are, it's entirely up to you.

Also, keep in mind: some bloggers prefer to go by an alias. In these cases, please don't refer to them on your blogs by their real names. We're trying to spread joy here, people!

Ok, if you have any further questions, you know what to do.

Your packages should (I'd like to say 'must', but I'm not naive) be shipped no later than 5 December.

When you've done that, please let me know, and I'll make a note of it here. As packages come and go, I will update this page, which can be located by clicking on the BBM icon in the upper right hand of my blog.

Once you receive your package, take pictures, write about it, and send me a link to your post. I will then add that to the page, as well.

That way, we'll all be able to see what wonderful goodies bloggers are sharing!

Ok, here's your list:

I Got 2 Shoes Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

* Curiosity Cabinet * Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

A Mindful Life
Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!


A Self-Proclaimed Foodaholic Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Aarikavination Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Acme Instant Food Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Adventure Chef

All Things Jennifer Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

American Girl Package has shipped!

Anne's Food Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Artizen Kitschen Package has arrived!

Attitudes Are Contagious. Mine Might Kill You. Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Barbie2bePackage has shipped! Package has arrived!!!

cass loves cooking Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Christine Cooks Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Clivia´s Cuisine Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Columbus Foodie Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Couteau Bonswan Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Crumpeted Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Cyndi Cooks Package has shipped!

Dispensing Happiness Package has (finally) shipped! Package has arrived!!!!!!!

dreaming in denmark Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

eat the right stuff Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Eating for One Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Enjoy Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Enthusiastically Human Package has arrived!!

erin-go-blog! Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Experimentation of Taste Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Fallen Souffle Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Feeding My Enthusiasms Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Flavor Junkie Package has shipped!

FoodArtandRandomThoughts Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Fruits Basket
Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!


Gastronomicon Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Gighas thoughts on Food and TravelPackage has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Gluten-Free By The Bay Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Guinea pig with a wok Package has shipped!

Habeas Brulee Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Have fork will travel Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Impossible Juxtapositions Package has shipped!

In Search of Dessert

Jenny Sais Quoi Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Jumbo Empanadas Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Kiriel Package has shipped!

Kitchem Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

La Mia Cucina Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Leena Lighthouse Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Lila Füge (Purple Fig) Package has shipped!

Limes & Lycopene Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Little Spatula Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

m3rni3 Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Only Turkish Food Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Pam's Pantry Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Pouter's Pond Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Saffron and Pepper Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Savoury Snark Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

So anyway… Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Spin Me I Pulsate Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Tartelette Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

thatgurl.com Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

The Town Tart Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Tours et Tartines

TriniGourmet.com Package has shipped! Package has arrived!

Tsuredzuregusa Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Tummy Treasure Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Ugly Fruit Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

Veggie Friendly Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!

What geeks eat...
Package has shipped!


When My Soup Came Alive
Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!


Writing at the Kitchen Table Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!


If you're interested in what other people have done, you can see the roundup of the previous edition here.

Here's what customs information we were able to find:

Canadian Food Inspection Agency

US Customs

Austrailian Department of Agriculture

New Zealand Customs Service

Malaysian customs information

Singapore customs

German customs

Netherlands customs information


Sweden: both Lexi and Kristina let us know that if you mark a package to Sweden as 'gift', you won't have to pay taxes on it! Also, no real restrictions.

Swizerland: Mademoiselle Différentielle gave us this helpful bit: "There are no taxxes on gifts to private people living abroad to private people living in Switzerland as long as the value is not higher than 100 Swiss Francs (ca 75 Euros), but not more than max 0.5 kg butter, 200 cigarettes, or 50 cigars, orr 25 gramm tobacco, 1 litre of alcoholic drinks under 25 degrees, 0.25 Litre alcoholical drinks above 25 degrees"

Belgium: Eva says, "For Belgium it is about the same rules as for Sweden, so as long as it is marked "gift" you can send just about anything."

Cananda: Randi says, "If you mark a package to Canada, GIFT, the recipient wont have to pay any duty."



Tagged with: + + +

16 Thoughts for food:

At 10:00 PM, Blogger Helene said...

Thanks for organizing this one again!
I need to mention to my Secret Santa that I will be gone from Dec.14th til Jan. 5th but there will be somebody to take care of our mail.

 
At 11:33 AM, Blogger Stephanie said...

No problem!

As long as you have someone watching your mail, I think you'll be fine.

Going anywhere exciting? Like...back to France??

 
At 1:14 PM, Blogger ByTheBay said...

thank you so much for putting this together!

 
At 2:35 PM, Blogger Stephanie said...

BtB; hey, it's as much fun for me as you guys! I love getting mail!

 
At 11:33 AM, Anonymous thordora said...

Dude, I shipped my package the other day!

 
At 11:41 AM, Blogger Stephanie said...

Got it.

 
At 9:19 AM, Anonymous Mitsuko said...

I haven't received anything yet... Has my package been shipped already? :(

 
At 11:50 AM, Blogger Stephanie said...

Catherine; I'm fairly certain it was shipped...I know from experience it takes a while to get to Belgium!

 
At 8:41 AM, Anonymous Cassi said...

This is one of the best ideas I have seen! If you do another one I would love to be involved. Thanks

 
At 1:32 AM, Blogger Stephanie said...

Hi, Cassi!

We're still waiting for the last of the packages from this round to show up at their destinations, but it is my hope to have another one in a couple of months.

Be sure to check back here, for updates...we'd love for you to join in!

 
At 2:19 PM, Blogger Joanna said...

The package I sent to Stephanie at Couteau Bonswan was quite rudely returned because a label was improperly affixed. Hopefully it has now arrived in tip top shape!

 
At 5:20 PM, Blogger Eva said...

Hi Stephanie,

Thanks for a lovely parcel!! I am speechless!! (and that does not happen too often..)

I have posted about it here:
http://myran4ever.blogspot.com/2007/
01/how-monday-blues-became-magical-
and.html
Add the 3 lines together and you have the link!

 
At 11:49 AM, Blogger Stephanie said...

Wow...I don't often render another soul speechless; yay for me!!

Seriously, though...I'm happy it arrived safe and sound, and that you like it. You deserved it!

 
At 2:41 PM, Blogger Stephanie said...

Johanna; I've not heard from her, but just sent an email to check.

I'll let you know as soon as I hear anything!

 
At 10:19 PM, Blogger Ceviz said...

Well, I sent a great parcel to Adventure Chef. I asked them three times if they received it. No response to emails, no acknowledgment. And it seems that they did not mail one either. So rude!

 
At 7:47 PM, Blogger Stephanie said...

Ceviz; I'm so sorry about that.

I don't know what happened with them...I lost track of how many times I wrote and asked about packages both sent and received. They never responded.

Unfortunately, this is the sort of thing that is out of my hands! But I do keep a list of those who 'flunked' BBM...so they're not going to be spoiling the fun for anyone else.

Again, sorry you got a dud.

 

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