Holiday Gifts to Support Bloggers

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It's my birthday! The next few days are pretty bonkers around here---we've got overnight guests, a Thanksgiving Feast at school (I've slow cooked turkey breasts to share), birthday parties, and lots and lots and lots of family. It's truly the best time of the year.

It can also sort of kind of become a bit stressful. I'm trying to do everything I can to stay out of the mall this year, and order online or shop in town. So far so good.

I've compiled a list of possible gifts that might be helpful for crossing some people off of your list---there's a lot of different genres listed, and in doing so you'll be helping out some extraordinary people at the same time: bloggers!

Note: Whenever possible, I’ve linked to the author’s Amazon Associate account, not my own. While reading the reviews on Amazon is a fantastic way to get a feel of the book, buying the book at your friendly neighborhood independent book store is best for your local economy. I am familiar with the work of *all* of these bloggers. While I am sure that there are other books by bloggers “out there,” I have not personally read their blogs or their books.
originally posted 10/26/09 on Totally Together Journal.


The Gluten Free Almond Flour Cookbook Elana blogs at Elana’s Pantry, and has a beautiful website and an even more beautiful book. She has healthy recipes for all types of gluten free food that is healthy and wholesome. She introduced me to the wonders of almond flour and agave nectar. Cooking with almond flour creates moist, delicious gluten free baked products.
Clotilde’s Edible Adventures in Paris Clotilde blogs at Chocolate & Zucchini, and was the first food blogger I followed regularly who wrote a book. This book reads like a memoir/travel guide, and she does have a fabulous cookbook, Chocolate & Zucchini: Daily Adventures in a Parisian Kitchen.
David Lebovitz I’ve linked to David’s author’s page on his blog, because he has a great collection of cookbooks and a fantastic new memoir entitled, The Sweet Life in Paris. David goes out of his way to support bloggers, and is an all-around nice guy.
Pioneer Woman Cooks Ree blogs at The Pioneer Woman, and her cookbook just came out and is a best seller! Ree is warm, friendly, and loves butter–a fabulous trifecta. She’s absolutely wonderful.
Steamy Kitchen Jaden writes at Steamy Kitchen, and has phenomenal recipes for all kinds of Asian-inspired food. Her recipes are simple, clear, and use fresh ingredients. Her friendly writing style and gorgeous photos suck readers right in.
The $5 Dinner Mom Cookbook Erin blogs at $5 Dinners, and is not only a great friend, she has created a fabulous resource for busy families on a budget. ALL of her meals have been made for $5 or less for a family of four. Her book isn’t out yet, but you can pre-order it and have it delivered to your gift recipient.
Family Feasts for $75 a Week Mary blogs at Owlhaven, and has 10! children. She knows how to feed a crowd, and knows all about picky eaters. A fantastic resource for anyone looking to streamline the kitchen, learn about meal planning, and save money.
Gary Vaynerchuk’s 101 Wines Gary blogs at Gary Vaynerchuk, and he does video-blogging (vlogging) on wine. He is hysterical, witty, and down to earth. Gary is the furthest thing from a wine snob, yet knows all there is to know.
Make it Fast, Cook it Slow Stephanie (that’s me, I snuck in!) blogs at A Year of Slow Cooking. In 2008, she made a New Year’s Resolution to use her slow cooker every day for a year, and write about it online. This book has the best 338 recipes from the year. All recipes are gluten-free, due to a family intolerance.


Sleep is For the Weak Rita writes at Surrender, Dorothy and she put together the best of the best of the mommy bloggers into a great gift for any pregnant woman, new mom, or any dad who needs to better understand his wife’s wonky behavior. I’ve given this numerous times as gifts, and it’s always well-received.
Sane Woman’s Guide to Raising a Large Family Mary (featured up above) writes at Owlhaven, and is a mom to 10. I read this book when we were deciding to take the plunge from two to three, and found her advice helpful and straightforward.
The Rookie Mom’s Handbook Heather and Whitney write at Rookie Moms, and wrote this book when they were trying to figure out how to keep their little ones entertained during the day. The handbook is chock full of developmentally appropriate activities, broken down by age groups. I’ve met Heather and Whitney, and like it that they are *real* moms, instead of parenting “experts.”
It Sucked and Then I Cried Heather is an internet rockstar. She started Dooce an awful long time ago, before there were tons of blogs, and is known as the Ultimate Mommy Blogger. I found her memoir fun and light-hearted. Although it’s presented as being primarily about postpartum depression, I wouldn’t classify it as such—I found it more like a being pregnant and new-mommy memoir.
The Mominatrix’s Guide to Sex Kristen blogs at Motherhood Uncensored. Her book isn’t out yet, but will be mid-January, just in time for Valentine’s Day, and is available for pre-order. I’m probably more prude than most, but am happy that a book like this exists, and that a blogger wrote it.
Sippy Cups are Not for Chardonnay I’ve linked to Stefanie’s Author page on Amazon, because she has three books out. She blogs at Baby on Bored. I’ve read her first book, and thought it was a nice change to the parenting books I was reading at the time. Stefanie isn’t afraid to call it as she sees it, and she doesn’t sugar-coat the hard(er) parts of motherhood.


Gluten Free Girl Shauna writes at Gluten Free Girl, and she was one of the first resources I turned to when we were first diagnosed with Celiac in our family. Shauna’s love for food and her vast knowledge gave me the confidence I needed to start embracing our new lifestyle. Her eloquently-written memoir shares much about her personal road to gluten free living. She is working on a new cookbook which I eagerly await.
Half-Assed Jennette blogs at Pasta Queen, and shares her personal journey of losing 180 pounds all on her own in this fabulous memoir. I read this book coming home on an airplane during some rather rough turbulence, and her friendly writing style and hilarious anecdotes kept me calm.
Straight Up and Dirty and Moose Stephanie writes at Stephanie Klein, formerly named Greek Tragedy. I met her July 2008 at BlogHer, and was charmed by her warmth and wit. Stephanie has led such a different life than I have–which is kind of neat since we have the same name. I’ve read both of her books, and loved being able to “listen in” on her life experiences–both as a newly-divorced and dating single, and as a young teen at a camp for overweight youth.
Bitter is the New Black, Jen Lancaster Jen blogs at Jennslyvania, and was one of the first bloggers I’d heard of to write a memoir. I’ve linked to her Amazon page, as she has four books under her belt. Jen writes like a friend speaking, and immediately engages the reader with her cut-t0-the chase humor.


The IT Girls Guide to Blogging Kathie and Joelle blog at Moxie Design Studios, and have written a comprehensive guide to blogging—perfect for the newish blogger, the wanna-be who wants to get started on the right foot, or the blogger who wants to beef up his/her web presence.
No One Cares What You Had for Lunch: 100 Ideas for Your Blog Maggie writes at Mighty Girl, and wrote a fun compilation of blog post topics. This is great for the personal blogger who sometimes has a hard time figuring out, or narrowing down blog post ideas.
Personal Development for Smart People Steve blogs at Steve I found his blog a few years ago when I was googling how to create a highly trafficked website. I like a lot of his ideas, especially the 30 Days to a New Habit posts. Some of his ideas are quite out there, and may be offensive. Please read the Amazon reviews carefully.
Crush It! This is Gary’s (featured above) newest book. I haven’t yet read it, but am interested in doing so. It’s gotten rave reviews as a fantastic resource for any interested in learning more about social media.
TypePad for Dummies Shannon blogs at Rocks in My Dryer. I love how Shannon writes, especially the way she interacts with her readers. I was fortunate to meet her at BlogHer in 08, and was thrilled to learn that she was writing a Dummies book on Typepad. The book isn’t quite out yet, but you can pre-order it on Amazon.
Post Cards from Yo Momma Oh this is so funny. The women who run this blog were on to something--Imagine saving all of the emails and instant messages from your mom, and reading them a bit out of context. I giggled so much while reading this---it's a fantastic collection.
Passive Aggressive Notes A complete Laugh-Out-Loud book, filled with the snarky notes coworkers, roommates, and strangers leave for each other when they are just a tad bit annoyed. Excellent gift for the hard-to-shop-for brother or uncle. Or feisty aunt. Based on the blog, Passive Aggressive Notes.
Cake Wrecks: When Professional Cakes go Horribly, Hilariously Wrong This is such a fun book, based upon the blog of the same name. The mistakes that busy bakeries make are photographed and "reported" upon in this great gift book. It cracks me up that there are real bakers out there that will make a beautiful cake and take the time to pipe: Congratulations [insert name here]! and then try to sell it!

okay! I hope these ideas help in your holiday shopping—hopefully you can quickly cross people off your list and help fellow bloggers out at the same time.
Happy Shopping!

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Posted by: Stephanie O'Dea | A Year of Slow Cooking at November 24, 2009

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What they say about this article

  1. Thanks for the list Stephanie! I'm new to the blogging world myself so I really appreciate all of these resources. Have a happy holiday!

  2. Happy Birthday! Thanks for all the gift ideas and I have a feeling that a few of these will make it onto my Christmas Wishlist!


  4. Happy Birthday! I'm a new fan and just ordered your for my Kindle. Have a great holiday/birthday/everything!!!

  5. Hey Stephanie! HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! (mine was yesterday!)

    I hope that you and your family have a wonderful Thanksgiving!


  6. Today is my birthday too, happy birthday! Thanks for all the great recipes that you share with all of us!!

  7. Happy Birthday to you!!

  8. Although I discovered you in mid 2009 I still love your blog and have learned so much. I've bought 2 crock-pots since I discovered you.
    I love your blog so much I have nominated it for the Kreative Blogger award. The posting on our blog Cemetery Divas tomorrow will have the details.

  9. Thanks for the list, Stephanie!

    I'm afraid I want some of them for me, though, instead of for gifts!

    Have a GREAT birthday, and a happy thanksgiving!

  10. Great list, and wonderful to support so many blogging friends. Have a very happy and delicious birthday!

  11. Happy Birthday. a great list that looks like a lot of fun. hope all is going well with your pregnancy. I made your black bean soup recently and it was delicious!

  12. Happy Birthday to you! Today is my youngest's birthday, too.

  13. Happy Birthday, Stephanie! Hope it was fabulous. :)

    You did miss a book, though--DadGoneMad Danny Evans' Rage Against the Meshugenah: Why it takes balls to go nuts. Very good book, very good blogger, very, very, very important subject.

    Here's his book page:

    And his blog:

    And it on Amazon:

  14. Great leads! i love some of these blogs!
    Thanks a bunch!

  15. Leaving this list for us is a great kindness, a true gift for the holidays. Thank you for your generosity. Writers celebrating writers is a joy to see.

  16. I'll have to see if any of the books are available at our local library.

    Happy Birthday!

    Marcus and I are off to volunteer at our church. My husband is in for a long day at Kmart.

    We had our Thanksgiving dinner yesterday. Marcus and I made the whole dinner. It was my first turkey! And my husband loved it!

    Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!

  17. Happy Birthday and Happy Thanksgiving, Stephanie! What a wonderful listing you've compiled. It's always so helpful to get candid book recommendations from a friend. :-)


  18. I got your book! It's great! I look forward to many slow-cooked meals!

  19. This is awesome, thank you! Your book is already on my list, and I must second the Danny Evans shout out - Dad Gone Mad is a must-read.

  20. I've been here many times before and used your recipes, too, but today I was reminded of your site from a link on A Heart For Home...

  21. happy late birthday!

  22. Happy belated birthday, visiting your site again from A Heart For Home. Thanks again for all your great work and blogging, your recipes are all so great!

  23. Michelle12/07/2009

    Thanks for the list! I actually ordered 5 books from it on for Christmas gifts. I even got 2 copies of yours! :)

  24. Wow! This is a great list!!
    Going through it I found several gift ideas for family and friends, and a couple for ME!!

    Thanks for sharing!

  25. Anonymous12/12/2009

    hmm.. attractive thoughts :)