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1 Year Swapiversary

Posted by | April 13, 2011 | Uncategorized | 18 Comments

swap swap 2

2 of many mid-week meals that would never have happened without The Swap

It has been one whole year since Shalinee and I started our Swap. Last week we treated ourselves to a decadently leisurely lunch of sushi and plum wine to celebrate our year-long-accomplishment! We have religiously swapped dinner meals every Tuesday for the entire past year. And while we’ve missed a few, it has always been for a good reason, and mostly we’re just shocked at the fact that we’ve managed to keep up with The Swap for a whole entire year. It has been a lot of work (Monday nights are killer!), but it has been so worth it! I know this sounds crazy, but seriously, The Swap has revolutionized my life. Don’t get me wrong, getting dinner on the table is still a major challenge, but The Swap makes it a lot easier. Some of my favorite parts of The Swap:

  • My family is consistently eating great, healthy, home-cooked, nutritious, delicious, food prepared with love.
  • Although I’m still frenzied with the burden and daily grind of providing food for my family of five, it is much easier than it was before. Coming home from work knowing that dinner just needs to be heated up is a major relief. We almost always sit down to a good wholesome family dinner every single night of the week. The Swap hasn’t taken the pressure off completely, but it has taken the pressure off tremendously.
  • My kids are developing an amazing food palate that is at least twice as broad as it would be without The Swap.
  • My kids are seeing first-hand what a super-strong-reciprocal-friendship is all about; they see the work that goes into a friendship like that, and they see the joy that comes out of a friendship like that; they see their mom having a best friend.
  • Thanks to Shalinee the J-Ms get to eat Indian food a lot! We love Indian food and always have… so this is a huge treat for us!
  • Somehow, somewhere along the way in the past year, The Swap has changed my feelings about leftovers. Previously I avoided leftovers like the plague. But over the past year I’ve found that we’re eating leftovers regularly, I’m re-constituting food regularly, and we’re feeling totally differently about leftovers. All this lovingly-prepared-good-food is just too good to waste, and we are motivated to make our Swap meals stretch to cover the weekdays. It is such an interesting and unexpected twist to The Swap, and it is all good.
  • The Swap inspires me to think creatively about food and I find myself investing in cooking as a creative outlet again – not just for the Swap meals, but all week long.
  • We are eating pasta a lot less often (the kids aren’t thrilled about this, but I sure am!).
  • I don’t feel bad anymore on the occasions when I serve my bambinos mac-n-cheese and pizza and chicken nuggets… because it happens so infrequently— thanks to The Swap.

There are lots of other reasons I love The Swap, but there’s my short list.

In the past couple of months Shalinee and I have been really bad about posting our Swaps. We’re just two really busy working moms who are struggling to find time to blog. There is no question that we’re going to keep on swapping indefinitely, but right now we’re trying to figure out how/if to approach the blogging of it. We’re toying around with a whole range of ideas from creating a whole separate Swap Blog to quitting blogging about it altogether. If you have any thoughts on this, we’d love to hear them… so what do you think? Should we keep blogging our Swap? Should we re-define our Swap blogging? Should we quit blogging it altogether? What are your thoughts?

Thanks for reading and Happy Swapiversary!  ~H


  • tafel says:

    I have missed your swap posts – I am bad about commenting but I do love them. You motivated me to start meal planning seriously and life is much smoother in our household too. I would love to how you re-purpose the leftovers too. (I made Shalinee’s marinara sauce & spag squash dish, and then used the rest of the sauce in a chicken & pasta dish a couple of nights later.)

  • Shirley Stanton says:

    I love the blog swap! My sister in law and I are going to start doing the swap. Both our dads died in the past few months :( and we are doing food for our moms and ourselves. So we are going to do the swap and see how it works for us. I hope you keep it!
    I love your blog. I get up at 5 am to get ready for work and I look so forward to your blog, it makes my day! ( I teach 9 three year olds in day care :)

  • Rebecca says:

    I’m happy with the random swap posts on this blog. Creating a whole new swap blog sounds like a lot of work!

  • Melissa says:

    My (selfish) opinion is keep blogging about it – even infrequently! I trust your food sense and like seeing and trying the recipes you post. Since you posted the eggplant and zucchini roll-ups they have become a favorite of my family. We mix it up with quinoa and different fillings but I would never have thought of that on my own or be brave enough to try it!

  • Yve says:

    Love your swap blogs and have got many great recipes from them, although it does seem like a lot of work when the concept of the swap is less work for the mothers!

    If its all too much work though, would be just as happy if you guys just occasionally posted recipes (including Shalinee because we love Indian food here too and hers is to die for!) when you had time?

  • Kate says:

    Happy Swapiversary! Not sure if my views count as I’m a mere onlooker…but I say follow what feels right. What drew me to your blog in addition to the wonderful, funny and heartfelt posts was the fact you and Braydon were unashamedly blogging for yourselves and your children as an online scrapbook of your family life…and yes you are loud and proud in the trans-racial adoption community and dual career couple arena but you are blogging for yourselves and not for your blog audience.
    That said, my two cents – I enjoyed reading your swap posts and thoroughly enjoy following your blog – I enjoy opening up the webpage and not knowing what to expect! I loved the various Food Fridays and the Food Week so if you’d prefer to scale down the blogging about the Swaps then perhaps blog about it occasionally on a ” FORTNIGHT FOOD FRIDAY” along with any other foodie goings on. Bottom line: it shouldn’t feel like a chore.
    Happy Swapping!
    – Kate

    • Heather says:

      I love this comment Kate. Thanks so much. You are right– I think we are really different from most bloggers because we’re, as you say, “not blogging for our audience.” I also love your idea for doing Food Friday and including a swap post in there from time-to-time. Thanks for your thoughts and thanks for reading!

  • Eden Marchman says:

    i always skip the swap posts!

  • Erin says:

    Mmmmm, I love the Swap posts. I dream of finding someone to do this with. I’ve been watching for a daal recipe. We love, love, love Indian food too. Michael has been working on his daal recipe. It’s so delicious.


  • Julia5loves says:

    I know the swap posts are probably a lot of work on your part; but pretty please keep your wonderful recipes coming! We make your awesome greek chicken at least once a week now!

  • Julie says:

    I love the swap posts and have made most of the recipes posted.

  • Nif says:

    I love the swap posts and have used several recipes!!

  • Lisa says:

    I love the swap posts. I’ve made a few of the recipes. But, do what you need to do!

  • Nadia says:

    I love the swap posts because dinner becomes routine and boring, and I love to see what other people are eating so we can get new exciting ideas!! (and recipes don’t hurt at all!) I’d love to see them on here just because I don’t need another blog to read LOL.

  • Leanne says:

    I love your swap posts. They make me happy and hungry ! Do what works best for
    You & Shalinee ! I Love the idea of Food Friday too. Thanks for sharing your blog with all of us.

  • Renee says:

    LOVE the swap posts! The Blanchard’s cornbread is our favorite. I’m experimenting with vegetarian recipes as well, and when you paired the bread with vegetarian chili, I found an online recipe for Emeril’s version. It’s become one of my favorite meals, with plenty left over to freeze!!

  • Julie says:

    Love your swap recipes! Your Asian noodle salad has become a recent favorite in our house and we also love Indian food but wouldn’t be successful in making it without your help. Hope you continue, even if only occasionally.

  • Sarah Kate says:

    I really enjoy the swap posts and have also made several recipes. I appreciate the cooking inspiration and imagining it all going down at your respective tables. That said, with such a full life, helping me figure out what to make for dinner should not be a priority! I will accept what you choose. An occasional recipe never goes astray, though. SKU :)

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