Category Archives: FamilyCookbookProject.com

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Meet the Guys Behind Family Cookbook Project

Chip Lowell and Bill Rice at a beach picnic on Cape Cod

Family Cookbook Project was began 14 years ago and was developed by two friends who both love cooking and food.  Bill Rice is the father of four and has worked on his family’s genealogy for more than two decades.  Over a wonderful summertime family meal on Cape Cod, Bill and some of his family decided to create a family cookbook.  Bill turned to his long time friend and programming expert Chip Lowell to develop a simple website to facilitate the project.  The site was such a hit with Bill’s family, the two decided to offer it access to other families looking for an opportunity to create a lasting family heirloom.

Both Bill and Chip brought a strong understanding of web development, marketing and the need for top notch customer service to help the development of Family Cookbook Project.

Bill Rice is an entrepreneur and the President of the Web Marketing Association. He brings a strong marketing and usability focus to the development of the website and it’s products. He also has written much of the text for the site and many of the blog posts (including this one!). He is an avid photographer and a senior contributor on the TripAdvisor website.

Chip Lowell is the technology guru behind the programming of Family Cookbook Project. He is also the Director of Sales and Marketing at CodeBlue Technology, LLC, based in Richmond, Virginia.  CodeBlue provides IT services throughout Richmond and central Virginia. Chip is also a grill master and loves to spend his free time (if he had any) in his back yard with his wife Sally trying new recipes on his Big Green Egg grill.

In 14 years, we have had more than 60,000 cookbook editors use our system to collect and create online cookbooks for their family, friends, church, school, group or as a fundraiser. More than 227,600 contributors have submitted over 1.6 million recipes so far and hundreds of new recipes are added every day.

So when you wonder why all of our customer service is usually done via email, it’s because we both have day jobs. However, Family Cookbook Project is a passion of ours. We love to be able to help promote the concept of personalized cookbooks for families and fundraising efforts.

Family cookbook project.com just got easier

QuickStart HomepageOne of the things we are most proud of about the Award-winning FamilyCookbookProject.com is how easy it is to use. While the site offers so many options to make your personal cookbook look just like dreamed it would. But it still was not easy enough for us.

That is why for the past several months we have been developing a new Editor’s “Quick Start” homepage specifically to make being a cookbook editor easy. We’ve created five separate centers and added all of the features, tools and options that relate to that center in one place. You will also find quick links to the most used functions on the homepage itself.

These new Centers are:

Recipe Center

Cookbook Layout Center

Cookbook Account Center

Helpers and Contributors Center

Cookbook Printing Center

 

Your Choice

Now, the first thing most of you long time editors will think is that “I know where everything is now, why do I have to learn it all over!”. Well, you don’t. You will have the option to keep your existing homepage or switch to the new one. However, all new accounts will automatically start on the new homepage experience.

Instant Hints

Another new feature to help you when you use a desktop is our “Instant Hint” feature. You will now find <?> icons throughout the site and if you hover over them with your computer pointer, you will get more details on what that link does without having to click on it!

How to Select the new Editor’s homepage

The first item in your Family Cookbook Message center (the right column of your homepage) is now option to “Set Home Page”. Change this to “Quick Start” and you’ll be switched to the new homepage. Change it back to “Full Home” and you’ll reset it to the original homepage.

We Need your Help

Now it is your turn to make the site even easier. Please give the new homepage a try and then give us your feedback about what you like and dislike about our new Editor’s Homepage. Is anything is the wrong Center? What else would you like to see? Is it easier or more difficult? It’s up to you to let us know what you think and help make Family Cookbook Project the best personal cookbook publishing site on the Internet.

 

Family Cookbook Project adds three new cover choices

BackToSchool4txtIn an effort to continually build its library of professionally designed covers for its editors to choose from, Family Cookbook Project has added three new cookbook covers.

Back to School – Kids: This cookbook cover is perfect for a daycare, elementary school or other cookbook involving young children. The images are fun whimsical cartoon characters having a good time.

 

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Back to School – Supplies: Another school related cookbook cover, this cookbook cover features schools supplies such as a globe, artist paint brush, calculator, apple, etc.

 

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Red, White and Blue: Looking for a patriotic cookbook, this may be your cover! A blue background with red stripes and white stars provide a colorful cover for any cookbook need.

Family Cookbook Project is working on additional covers that will be available in the coming months. If you have a cover that you think we should add to our collection, please let us know!

Web Marketing Association Names FamilyCookbookProject.com Best Family Website of 2018

FCBP Homepage 18The Family Cookbook Project (www.familycookbookproject.com) has been named the Best Family Website of 2018 by the Web Marketing Association’s 22nd annual WebAward Competition for Web site development.  The Family Cookbook Project creates personalized cookbooks for individuals, families, church groups and schools.

“The Great Family Cookbook Project is a website dedicated to helping families collect and preserve cherished recipes into a printed cookbook that can passed down from one generation to the next”, says Chip Lowell, Technical Director of the Family Cookbook Project.  “We are proud that our efforts have been recognized by the Web Marketing Association with this WebAward.  We will continue to develop our site to help families, schools and church groups create both online and printed cookbooks that become treasured heirlooms.”

The Family Cookbook Project Website was started as a project in 2003 to help one family collect and organize a family cookbook. Overwhelming feedback from those who used the website led to its continued development and public launch.  Currently, more than 88,000 families have started family cookbooks using the website and have entered more than 1.56 million individual recipes.

“Personalized cookbooks have been around since the 1950s, however the process of collecting and organizing recipes has always been a labor intensive project for the cookbook editor”, says Lowell. “The Family Cookbook Project website provides step by step instructions and tools to help cookbook editors invite others to participate and allow them to enter their favorite recipes directly into the online system.  The editor then simply reviews and edits the recipes, selects printing options, and sends the cookbook to be printed.  The finished printed cookbooks are then received by the editor in a few weeks time”.

Thousands of sites from 52 countries were adjudicated in 96 industry categories during this year’s competition. Entries were judged on design, copy writing, innovation, content, interactivity, navigation, and use of technology.  The competition was judged by a team of independent Internet professionals representing a variety of relevant disciplines of Web site development. Judges included members of the media, advertising executives, site designers, creative directors, corporate marketing executives, content providers and webmasters.

One WebAward judge commented “This is an excellent site. It is easy to navigate and lets the user enter recipes easily. Even someone who is not tech-savvy could probably enter their recipes without a hitch.”

About the Web Marketing Association

Since 1997, the annual WebAward Competition is conducted by the Web Marketing Association, Inc. (WMA), an independent organization founded with the purpose of evaluating and recognizing the standard of excellence on the World Wide Web. Its Web site is located at www.webaward.org. The Web Marketing Association also has established the Internet Advertising Competition (IAC Awards) and the Interactive Investor Relations Awards.

About the Family Cookbook Project

The Family Cookbook Project is dedicated to helping individuals and families collect and preserve the time-honored recipes that are so important to our family traditions. The website at www.familycookbookproject.com provides step-by-step instructions and online tools to create a valuable family heirloom.  Personalized cookbooks are also used by schools and church groups as important fundraisers.

3 Ring Binding Now Available from Family Cookbook Project

IMG_8389A family cookbook is a living thing. New recipes are always being tried and added. Many people like to have a three-ring binder for their cookbooks so that adding recipes is quick and easy.

We are excited to offer 3-ring binders as an option for our Family Cookbook Project members. A 3-ring binder will be the same great size as our traditional cookbooks but also have the name of the cookbook on the spine. The binder itself is quite a bit larger than just the pages – about an inch all around or so. The binding opens to allow you to add additional recipes as you go. The one difference between the two binding styles is you can’t have inside front or back cover content with the new 3-ring binders.

IMG_8391In the Book Options and Design tool, you can choose from our standard coil binding in black or white or the new 3-ring binder options. The cost for the 3-ring binding is slightly higher than the coil binding because of the cost of printing.

At Family Cookbook Project we are always looking for new ways to make your cookbooks better for you. We have other exciting announcements coming so stay tuned!

 

Rating Your Favorite Recipes

StarsCreating a printed personal cookbook on FamilyCookbookProject.com can be a rewarding experience, but your interaction with the website does not have to stop there.

A majority of people who have created cookbooks continue to use the website as an online resource either from their desktop computer or by using our “award-winning” mobile app.

One fun thing to do is to rate the recipes you use from your cookbook.

Rating recipes is easy. Go to the “view recipes by contributor” and find the favorite recipe that you have added to the cookbook so far. Click on the title of the recipe to view it.  Right under the title is something that says “Rate this recipe” and 5 gray stars. To rate this recipe, simply click on the last star of your score. So if you think it is a “5 star” recipe, click on the last star. If it is a “4 star” recipe, click on the fourth star and so on.

You can also click in between to stars to give it a 4.5 star rating!

The next person who views the recipe will see your rating (although they will not know it came from you) and will be able to leave their own rating.

Over time you will see how many people rated your recipes and how much they liked them. It is one more way FamilyCookbookProject.com helps to build a dialog around your recipes.

Give it a try today and invite the others in your cookbook to do the same!

Cookbook Cover Selection Tool

covertoolHow do you select a great cover for your family cookbook? You use our Cookbook Cover Selection Tool. Part of the cookbook design section, this tool displays images of each professionally designed cookbook cover that users can select with a single click.

The covers are divided into categories, including: Family, Farm, Food, Fundraising, General, Holiday, Kitchen, Religious, School, Wedding. There is also an option to see all of the covers at the same time. New categories and covers are already in the works and will be announced shortly.

Users also have the option to create their own custom cookbook cover and upload that to the Family Cookbook Project Website.

To view the Cookbook Cover Selection Tool, log in to your editor’s account and select “Book Options and Design”. Here you will see the cover categories displayed with a “+” next to it. Click on the category label to expand the section and see the covers associated with that category. It’s that simple.

In addition to cookbook covers, divider options and recipe layout options have been upgraded to use the same technology to display options in a convenient, easy to use arrangement.

 

Holidays are the Best Time to Start a Family Cookbook

FamilyEatingTo most of us, the year-end holidays are a time of family, friends and a lot of food.  While these times can be hectic with all of the running around that needs to be done, it is also the best time to start a family cookbook project says one expert.

“Many of the family holiday traditions start in the kitchen and center around the meals we serve our family and guests at this time of the year, says William Rice, Founder and Co-Publisher of the Great Family Cookbook Project. “What better way to celebrate our family food traditions than to preserve them for future generations in a family cookbook. There is no better time to start planning a family cookbook than over a wonderful meal during the holidays”.

A successful family cookbook needs at least one dedicated individual to lead the project as editor. This person gets the project off the ground and invites family members to contribute recipes.  Once a labor intensive task, now families are using the Internet to simplify the project.  “A website, such as www.familycookbookproject.com, can provide step by step instructions and tools to help the family member serving as cookbook editor to contact others and encourage them to enter their favorite recipes directly into the online system,” says  Rice “The editor then simply reviews and edits the recipes, selects printing options, and sends the cookbook to be printed.  The finished printed cookbooks are received in a few weeks time and can be enjoyed and preserved forever.”

Here are some tips from Familycookbookproject.com to help make your family’s personalized cookbook a success:

Start talking about the project over dinner – Enjoying the food and dishes we love while being asked to contribute recipes will make the value of the project more real and worthwhile.

Have a sign up list for those who want to participate – Get everyone’s telephone number and email address in one place. This will help when it is time to be in contact with them over the project.

Pass out recipe forms after the meal – Having printed recipe forms lets people know what they need to provide and shows them how little work contributing will be.

Invite everyone to participate – Don’t just invite the family cooks. Everyone has at least one recipe that they can contribute to the cookbook. Use email to invite and stay in touch with contributors. Let them see what others have submitted to encourage them to keep adding their best recipes.

Set a deadline – Set a deadline one or two month in the future to have all of your recipes submitted. Most people work better if they know they face a hard deadline. If you don’t have enough recipes at the deadline, you can always extend it.

Keep in touch – After the holidays, keep in touch with everyone via email. Send regular updates and let then know who is participating and who is not.  Set a goal to have every family member contribute at least one recipe so they can be listed in the list of contributors.

Consider using a Website, like Familycookbookproject.com, to help organize your family cookbook. Here are just some of the benefits of www.FamilyCookbookProject.com:

– Editors can send contributors an email to invite them to participate in the family cookbook.  The site also makes it easy to send regular updates by email to some or all of the contributors.

– Allows individuals to enter their recipes directly into the online family cookbook so it does not fall entirely on the editor.

– Provides an easy way to share recipes online. Contributors have access to everyone’s recipes even before the final family cookbook is printed.

– Provides many options for recipe layout and cover selections or allows you to create your own cover.

Family cookbooks are an important way to preserve our mealtime traditions for future generations. With the passing of our loved ones comes the loss of treasured food traditions. A family cookbook ensures that the recipes from one generation can be passed on to the next as a treasured family heirloom. Once the recipes are preserved online, they can be shared with other family members by email, printed individual and included in your own professionally printed cookbook.

For more information on how your family can make a family cookbook, go to www.familycookbookproject.com.

About the Great Family Cookbook Project

The Family Cookbook Project is dedicated to helping individuals and families collect and preserve the time-honored recipes that are so important to our family traditions. The Family Cookbook Project (www.familycookbookproject.com) was recently named the Best Family Website by the Web Marketing Association’s WebAward Competition for the second year in a row.  The website has helped thousands of families and groups coordinate the creation of personalized cookbooks by provides step-by-step instructions and online tools to create a valuable family heirloom.  Personalized cookbooks are also used by schools and church groups as important fundraisers.

Two New Covers Added to Family Cookbook Design Center

At Family Cookbook Project, we are always trying to improve our offerings to our members. We are please to announce two new pre-designed cookbook covers that you can choose when designing your own personal cookbook.

HeartsOnStickstxtHearts on a Stick – Hearts on a stick is a great cover for any food lover. It can also be the perfect cookbook cover for a wedding cookbook or a bridal shower cookbook.

 

 

greatfood1txtCarrot and Apple – Carrot and Apple is a simple but fun illustration that is perfect for a kids cookbook cover. It can also be effective for a school fundraising cookbook cover.

 

 

These two new covers join over 50 professionally designed cookbook covers for you to choose from when you create your personal cookbook with FamilyCookbookProject.com.

Great Review of Family Cookbook Project

TestimonialRecently we received an email from a woman who had just completed her cookbook and was very happy with the results. We asked if we could share the comments and here they are:
I have to tell you what pleasure we had creating our cookbook, as a tribute to our recently departed mother. We had some great laughs and giggles during the process of walking down memory lane through each recipe….. as well as a few tears. This whole project was nothing but joy for us.
Your website was so clearly laid out and easily understood….and if you only knew how inept my sister and I are at all things technological, you would then realize what an amazing website you have!
And to top it all off …. we knew you were ever present with us on this journey…someone we could turn to for answers and advice….. and actually receive that guidance within a few hours. (Hmmmmm….kind of sounds like another big man I often turn to for guidance……)
Anyhow……thank you so much! We are already starting to plan our NEXT culinary cookbook!
Best regards,
Valerie N
To see what other people have said about Family Cookbook Project, please visit our Comment’s Page.