Ready, Set, Blog!

For you non-bloggers, you may have wondered what that banner on the side of my website is. Always changing, always featuring mouthwatering dishes. Foodbuzz is a social networking site for food bloggers. Even better, they sponsor food blogs. By showing their banner, my wallet gets a small boost every month. Foodbuzz is an awesome community that brings us blogging foodies together, and it has proven to only enhance my blogging experience.

Case and point: Project Food Blog.

I’m one of almost 2000 food bloggers competing in the contest. It consists of a series of food blogging challenges, with one blogger named the top foodie. He or she gets $10,000 and a regular feature on the Foodbuzz website.

Not bad, eh?

The competition kicks off this week, with voting opening on Monday, September 20. The following is my first submission for the contest. Expect to see a lot of food bloggers writing similar posts over the week. If you like mine best, I’ll remind you next week to support me with a simple click. Deal? Deal. Now let’s get to it.

 

“Why are you taking pictures of your food??”

Anyone who is a food blogger has probably received this question at some point. In restaurants, cafes, food fairs, even by roommates or family members. I first began food blogging with a site called Trying For A Tri. Its purpose was to chronicle the trials and tribulations leading up to my first triathlon. Much of that included what I was eating daily to fuel my training.

When I started The Great Balancing Act, I wanted to expand my horizons. Food and fitness are large part of healthy living, but I wanted to focus more on taking those two areas and balancing them out with family, friends, work, LIFE. There is no doubt I am borderline food-obsessed, but I love the idea of sharing food that works in an everyday lifestyle. That includes the good, the bad, and the ugly ;)

Sometimes, I eat really healthy.

I like to share these meals because they show how easy it is to incorporate simple, healthy foods into your everyday routine. They can also introduce others to new ways of combining foods!

I love to cook, bake, and generally just spend time in the kitchen. Sometimes I make up recipes

…and sometimes I follow them.

Then sometimes, I don’t make anything at all. I eat food just for the sheer ridiculousness of it.

 

“But you work out all the time, so it’s okay.”

Actually, no. I am just another girl trying to make good decisions for her body all the while having a little fun. Yes, I am a personal trainer, and yes, I do work out frequently (not all the time!). But this doesn’t mean I can eat whatever I want, or that I eat super healthy all the time! Like the name of my blog suggests, it’s all about balance.

I lost 30 lbs two years ago by overhauling the way I ate. Not necessarily for the better, but I’ve been doing the best I can ever since. It’s so easy to be too strict or too relaxed with your eating habits. Even worse, it’s too easy to become obsessed with your eating habits. My blog is a way to not only balance out those good and bad foods, but balance out food in general with the rest of your life.

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“Does that camera ever leave your side?”

No. No it does not. My camera is my baby. An extension of myself. In a former life, I worked as a reporter with a focus in broadcast journalism. I hosted a TV show, interviewed people, while regularly hiding behind a microphone and camera lens. Permanently documenting the events around me is a second habit. To whip out my camera in public and say “I have to take a picture of this!!” is just who I am.

Taking pictures of my food has never remotely irritated me. I love putting together a fabulous dish, finding a good pocket of light, and letting the shutter loose from a gazillion different angles and perspectives. I sometimes feel like I view the world through the eyes of a picture frame and am always excited when I can capture that and put it on screen for others to see. Besides, food is beautiful. Even oatmeal.

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“What makes your food so special?”

It’s not. And that’s the point. I don’t use crazy expensive ingredients. I’m not a vegan/vegetarian/onlydrinksjuicetarian. I don’t spend hours slaving behind a stove, nor do I have a big family to cook for. I hate washing fancy kitchen appliances and when I’m hungry, I won’t wait hours to prepare a dish.

For me, it’s all about using just a few simple ingredients to make stellar flavour combinations. Friends, I am all about the food combos.

Dates + cashew butter, smoked salmon + jam, hummus salad dressing, carrots + salsa, cream cheese + marshmallow fluff, bacon peanut butter. I’m not writing the next Joy of Cooking here, but I do like to think I share some of the simplest pleasures of food.

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“How do you find the time?”

Easy. You make time for the things you love. Blogging about my food has never felt like a chore to me. I look forward to sitting down and writing a blog post every day. Writing about food, and blogging in general, have changed my life. When I first began, I saw it as a good way to do some recreational writing and keep myself on track with triathlon training. Now it is one of my greatest joys. Even more, I am beyond thankful to have amazing people who choose to read it every day. I can sit here and ramble about food and exercise all I want, but it doesn’t really begin to take shape until those words are read and interpreted by others. So thank you for playing such an important part in this great balancing act of mine :)

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Posted on September 14, 2010, in Uncategorized and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 45 Comments.

  1. I always love your food photos! :) Great first entry for the Blog Project. Hope to see you in SF for FoodBuzz Fest.

  2. Awesome post! You can add to “why you do it” that you like have a positive impact on your readers. You may not always remember nor may it be your “main goal” but you should be aware that you are inspiration and source of comfort for so many people, particularly myself.

    Consider this one vote you’ve DEFINITELY collected =)

    Nicole G

  3. Oh my gosh, this was so great. I think the last point really meant a lot to me. I think as much as I love writing and being creative and sharing my life (and food) with others, I just don’t love blogging itself that much to make it a priority over things like spending time with my fiancé. And you know…that’s ok, for me, for right now.

  4. Love it, love you! I keep answering this question lately too: how do you have the time and your answer is mine! I really don’t look at it as finding the time. I WANT to blog, I LOVE blogging – it’s my nerdy hobby!

    Great post, Susan. Good insight into your world :)

  5. I really liked this post. I hope you do well in the Food Buzz contest! Your blog is spectacular, so I don’t see why you wouldn’t win. :)

    I also like how simple your meals are, but yet, they are still tasty AND creative. Keep up the good work, Susan!

  6. I loved reading your answers!!! I especially like how you said you find time to do what you love. I feel the same way. I fully plan on continuing blogging after this baby is born. I know some people will think thats crazy…but I’ll think its smart. Blogging is such an outlet for me and I know from last time I NEED something I’m passionate about that is all mine to keep me sane. Sorry for the tangent!

    Love all the food pics you used. They’re gorgeous. :)

  7. Just checkin’ out the competition. You look strong! Good Luck. GREG

  8. Fantastic! Great answers and great photos to back it up!

  9. Well said. Such a wonderful and interesting post! I love that you eat simply. That is what drew me to your blog!

  10. You’re my favorite Susan. End of story. :)

  11. What a great post. I have been asked so many similar questions and I’m so new at this. Your photos are amazing and your food always looks excellent.

    It is all about balance and truly making time for things you are most passionate about.,

  12. “Blogging about my food has never felt like a chore to me. I look forward to sitting down and writing a blog post every day. Writing about food, and blogging in general, have changed my life.”

    –> LOVE that. I would blog every single day if I could. And I think that’s one of my favorite pictures: the one of you taking a pic of your breakfast. :-)

  13. Only a foodie can understand a foodie – lol! Best wishes
    Eileen
    http://thejoyofcaking.wordpress.com

  14. excellent post susan. i agree with everything you’ve said here!

    i friggin love blogging, it’s never a chore for me. i’m so in love with photography & food makes me smile

  15. beautifully written. I love that when I say I am a persona trainer people assume OH WELL YOU MUST BE IN AMAZING SHAPE AND SUPER HEALTHY! well, yes I am-some of the time, but I also like to relax…the gym is where I work its my office so yes I spend a lot of time there but its not my entire life

    smoked salmon and jam–still intrigued by that one!

  16. nice PFB2010 entry. love the pictures of the tarts.

  17. I will support you. I read your blog every day and I LOVE IT!!!! :)

    Keep up the awesome work lady.

  18. I was nodding throughout this entire post! Love all your answers to these common questions – especially the one about finding the time because you love blogging! You’re right – blogging shouldn’t be a chore if you choose to do it every day!

  19. This is a great post. Thanks for sharing. You love writing, I love reading it :)

  20. You said it: You make time for what you love. TOTALLY. That photo of the berry pie-lets- yummmmmmmmmmmm!

    Super post.

  21. Great post! I like all the flavor combos!

  22. I love this post Susan!! For the record, I’d rather read your blog than one of a onlydrinksjuicetarian any day! :)

  23. I love reading about you, your food and excercise. I think you do a great job and love your honesty. Good luck in the contest!

  24. This is a beautifully written post. Thanks so much for sharing!

  25. us food bloggers are a different breed, but man.. we are awesome :) great post!

  26. Great post, Susan! Your photography is always an inspiration to me! :)

  27. This was a lovely post! good luck in the contest :)

  28. I love your entry, Susan! GOOD LUCK…I’ll be rootin’ for ya!

  29. Great post and great pictures. You have my vote. Good luck in the rest of the PFB!

  30. Love the name of your blog and I found you through PFB. Like what I see so far so I’m sending you a red heart – looking forward to seeing more. Good luck!

  31. Great post! You’ve got a vote from me!! You can check out my entry http://tinyurl.com/2ec2hlq Thanks! Good luck!!

  32. Melanie Mitchell

    You’re awesome, Susan, and a great inspiration :-) Good luck!

  33. just voted!!! good luck in project food blog!

  34. Great post! It is a balancing act, isn’t it? I completely agree with you. Check out my PFB post if you’d like at http://studioofgoodliving.com/2010/09/project-food-blog-defining-myself-as-a-food-blogger/
    I voted for you!

    Good luck with the rest of the competition!

  35. Great post! I loved reading your thoughts on everything! Thanks for sharing! And the photos are gorgeous!

    Best of luck with PFB! Just voted for you!

    If you like, you can check out mine here:

    http://www.foodbuzz.com/project_food_blog/challenges/1/view/502

    Thanks!

  36. Nicely done–you got my vote. :-)

  37. Bacon and chocolate is so delicious, but I’ve never seen it be photogenic before. Best of luck in PFB, you’ve got our vote!

    Lick My Spoon

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