#Thankful

Thank you to all the 2017 contributors


Over the last months, Teuko grew from a prototype to a social network gathering +3000 lunchbox ideas. This was made possible thanks to all the contributors who are tracking and sharing their own lunch ideas every day, either on www.teuko.com or tagging #teuko on social networks. Thank you for your inspiration, thank you for your support!

Let’s keep up the good work: time to spread the word to your friends and colleagues! The more people of your immediate network will join Teuko, the more inspiration and motivation you will get. Find out who among your friends is already on Teuko, and invite those who are missing!





#Discovery

Inspiration from the Historic Soulard Farmers Market


Last month led my family to St. Louis, in the state of Missouri. While St. Louis is currently remodelling the Jefferson National Memorial Expansion near its famous Arch and gets brand new buildings (go to St. Louis Library if you have the chance!), my kids and I could explore a very old but vibrant gem located in the neighborhood of Soulard: the Historic Soulard Farmers Market.


Two San Franciscans enjoying the Citygarden of St. Louis.
In the background, the Old CourtHouse and the famous Arch of St. Louis.


The Soulard Farmers Market has a Grand Hall connecting wings with multiple vendors: butchers, fruits and vegetables vendors, souvenirs… A farmer's market similar to those you can find in France.


The Soulard neighborhood and its historic Farmers Market.


For sure if we were living in St Louis, I would come every week to fill in my wicker basket with everything I need to prepare delicious lunch boxes for my kids!


Yummy, fresh, colorful seasonal food always brings inspiration ;)
Discovery and fun for the whole family!


What about you? What is the latest Farmers Market that you’ve visited with your kids?
Share with us your favorites by email or share your pictures with #teuko on social networks.




#News

Teuko featured at @Techcrunch Disrupt SF 2017


Teuko has been selected to showcase its product at TechCrunch Disrupt SF on September 18th, in Startup Alley’s Health & Biotech Pavilion. Our team joined hundreds of early-stage companies displaying their talent and technology.



This event has been a great opportunity to showcase our solution, be in touch with potential partners, and get feedback. We were also able to spread the word about the necessity for busy families to be supported in their mission of raising healthy kids. Teuko strongly believes that empowering parents is a unique way to make lunch packing a better experience for everyone, parents and kids.

To date, our community has gathered about 2,500 lunchbox ideas: let’s keep up the good work tracking and sharing what we pack week after week with Teuko!

More info : TechCrunch Disrupt event




#Motivation

How to win the lunchbox battle


It takes a lot of energy, of love and patience to raise good eaters. As parents we’re also frequently reminded how much responsibility we have into training our kids to make healthy choices on their own and for their own good. But it can be overwhelming to fit teaching good eating habits in our busy lives. Back-to-School and the lunchbox routine ready to strike back make it even more painful in most families. What if we tell you that you don’t have to stand alone anymore? Teuko and its community have your back to help you conquer the lunchbox grind this school year.



Teuko is an online community to help busy families like yours simplify lunchbox packing. Teuko is not only useful to find lunchbox ideas that are inspiring to you, but it is also useful to plan, track and share your own lunchbox ideas with the help of a standard eating pattern. Teuko also makes it easy to set up grocery lists to be more efficient when shopping and then packing. Getting options and the power of decision on the food to pack at any time is empowering and helps making lunchbox packing much easier and more fun.



Any picky eater around? We have you covered.
Teuko is a wonderful way to give your kids options. With Teuko, they can easily decide which food item they want to try out - selecting from little pictures of simple and real food items -, which shape or texture. You’re giving them the power of choice, which will make them more likely to try what you pack for them based on their suggestions.



So, if you are resolving to stay ahead of the lunchbox struggle this coming school year, make a shortcut to Teuko on your devices. If you ever feel uninspired when it’s lunchbox packing time, browse through the amazing all-packed lunchbox inspirations from other parents like you. Involve your children to pick out food inspiration they are interested to try out. Don’t forget to track your own ideas if you want to experience the power of sharing inspiration and motivation. Together we will make lunchbox packing so much easier!



#Tips

Lunchbox Photography for the Time-Strapped


Peruse Pinterest or Instagram long enough and you’re bound to find stunning photos of food. Once limited to magazines and cookbooks, food photography has burgeoned ever since websites have been able to display high-resolution photos. Nowadays, food photographers spend their days staging freshly cooked dishes amidst thematic props. It’s one part photography, one part stage design, and one part post-production. Aficionados make use of professional-grade equipment that costs a small fortune and takes a good deal of practice to use properly. With such high standards, what are the rest of us to do?

Fortunately, it doesn’t take a $10,000 DSLR or studio equipment to take beautiful photos of your food-or, for members of the Teuko community, of lunchboxes on the go. All that’s needed is a smartphone with a camera and familiarity with the basics of photographing images up close. Let’s get started by reviewing five key principles in food photography:
1. Light
2. Proximity
3. Lines-Angles
4. Styling
5. Editing


Light

Translated literally, photography means “writing with light.” It’s no surprise that light is the decisive factor in taking photos. When photographing food, indirect natural light is paramount. An image of food should tantalize viewers, whetting their appetites. Just as food should be natural, so should light.


A lunchbox illuminated by natural light from a nearby window. (Source: Teuko)


Beware: like a camera flash, too much direct natural light will wash out an image. Avoid excessive light by deactivating your flash and shooting in an area bathed in indirect natural light, ideally through multiple windows. Unless you’re looking to photograph a candle-lit dinner, food photography is best done in daylight.


Proximity

Unlike landscape photos, at times stretching miles into the distance, food is front and center. Some photographers use macro lenses, a features also available most point-and-shoot cameras and automated on smartphones, whose cameras range from eight to 12 megapixels. Since food isn’t photographed a distance, far weaker cameras can still take beautiful pictures of food. Nearby objects occupy more pixels than a lone tree on the horizon. That’s probably why food photography has become so popular, not requiring telescopic lenses or tiny apertures.


A close-up of three lunchboxes, the first of which appears in focus. (Source: Pixelbay - CC0)


How close you choose to photograph food depends on what you’re looking to highlight. Images of food taken anywhere from a few inches to several feet away are standard and, unless magnified, won’t pixelate on a screen. Lunch boxes appear best when photographed at a sufficient distance to reveal a few inches of surroundings. Depending on the size of your lunchbox, distance can range between one and four feet. Close-ups call attention to the natural beauty of the food and contrasts between different items served; photos taken at a greater distance can highlight the interplay between the lunchbox and its surroundings.


Lines and Angles

The best designs abide by the so-called “Rule of Thirds,” a grid system split into nine sections. Our eyes naturally gravitate towards lines and intersections on the grid, and with it, our attention. Images with an object in the center don’t call attention to one part over another. Everything is in focus and presumably important, which is generally the case of photos taken directly above (at a 90-degree angle) an object. This is the standard angle for snapping photos of a lunchbox, its contents in full display from above.


A photo of Korean lunch boxes framed using the Rule of Thirds. (Source: Pixelbay CC0)


If you’re feeling bold, though, you can experiment with other angles. Aim your smartphone at a 45-degree angle and you’ll focus on whatever appears in the front sections of the lunchbox. Transparent containers, such as glass containers, allow for cross-section shots that showcase a lunchbox’s contents from a 90-degree horizontal angle.


Styling

Food looks best in natural settings. This is true of light, as discussed above, and of surrounding objects. Whenever possible, take photos your lunchbox placed on a natural surface (e.g., wood) and exclude thematically unrelated objects (e.g., paper, toys, etc.). A surefire solution is to clear everything from the area near the lunchbox, leaving only the ingredients and utensils involved in packing it. In other words, the photo should at least feature the lunchbox and food it contains, but can also include supplemental items, such as utensils, napkins, ice packs, and the bag used to carry it.


A packed lunch flanked by cookies, yogurt, and a bottle of water. (Source: Teuko)



Editing

Most smartphones and point-and-shoot cameras include image editing tools that can adjust an image automatically. These generally help, but your best bet is to crop and adjust manually the brightness, contrast, and saturation in the photos app on your phone. If you take and edit a lot of photos and are willing to spend time (and money) perfecting their appearance, you might consider investing in an editing app—there are thousands available for iOS and Android devices.


Bringing It All Together

Food photography is more popular than it’s ever been, and for good reason: everyone has to eat. If you’re hungering for more tips and tricks, contact us for a list of resources. Do you have another trick you use and you would like to share with us? Send us an email.



#Discovery

Secrets of the Oil Mill of Storckensohn


Once upon a time, in a very small village, in the east of France, there was this hidden gem, the Oil Mill of Storckensohn. The villagers brought walnuts and hazelnuts. Few hours later they could bring back home bottles filled with gold...


Illustration of the Oil Mill of Storckensohn. Photo taken at the entrance of the Munsch House.


That sounds like the beginning of a great story, right? This story about the oil production is part of the great memories my kids and I brought back from France and we are happy to share it with you.


The Munsch House and the Oil Mill of Storckensohn.


The Oil Mill of Storckensohn was built in 1732 and what’s wonderful about it is that it’s still working! The authenticity of the oil mill let us plunge in stories and explanations.


Valentin and André, the two awesome hosts of the Oil Mill of Storckensohn.


We were delighted to be listening to the gears that were making music to our ears while it was super hot outside. André and Valentin, two passionate guides who shared the secrets of the oil mill of Storckensohn, made a very fun, dynamic and instructive demonstration.


1, 2, 3 steps for making the oil.


The first step to make oil is to transform the nuts into some kind of paste. The kids loved to collect the paste. Then, the paste was warmed up, so that, finally, it could be pressed and be transformed into oil.

The oil mill is making a sublissim tasty oil like you never ever had in your life. The smell and the taste of the oils… it’s literally pure gold (no kidding!). You can buy some bottles of oil at the boutique attached to the Munsch House, a little museum very next to the oil mill where you can discover how villagers were living.


Inside the Munsch House. Two bottles of oil. Clogs.


I’ve read a lot about the good nutritional aspect of nuts, and yet, I haven't had the habit to regularly eat nuts or use nuts oils. This visit inspired me!


Beet salad with goatcheese and walnuts.


Fun fact: during Fall, the oil mill of Storckensohn produces… fresh apple juice! So, when I’ll pack some apple juice in my kids' lunch boxes, I’ll somehow travel back in time, thinking about this hidden gem, in this very small village in the east of France.

More infos: https://www.moulinstorckensohn.com/



#Motivation

5 reasons to track and share your lunchbox ideas

If you pack lunch boxes, you must be familiar with that feeling that you have no more idea or that you are packing always the same thing. Here is a tip: track and share your lunchbox ideas! It might seem a little time consuming at first, but eventually, it will help you be more efficient, creative and motivated over time.

Here are 5 good reasons to track and share your lunchbox ideas with Teuko:

1- Know what you actually pack

Who actually remembers what was in the kids’ lunch boxes the day before or the week before? You may feel like you’re packing always the same things but is it true? I’ve been taking pictures everyday before packing, for almost a year now, and I remember very well my first takeaway: “ Wow, I did great that other day finally”,” Wow I’ve packed about 10 different lunches lately, not so bad”, or “Wow, I keep giving tomatoes over and over, maybe time to switch with another veggie?”. I was not doing as bad as I was thinking, and this made me feel so much better!


2- Set your own eating goals

As mentioned earlier, tracking helped me realize that I was giving the same veggie everyday whereas I could have easily switched with other veggies that my kids liked. Not rotating food options at all is the best way to prevent your kids from trying new things and expand their favorites. Tracking what I do is an effective way today to help me vary more the food I pack, playing with colors, textures… with whatever I have at hand, and without having to think much! Whether you set goals or not, it’s interesting to see how tracking makes you modify your habits over time anyway!



3- Mark and remember your kids’ favorites

Any lunchbox idea that your kids loved? Track it and you will be able to rate it as a favorite. This will allow you to go back to it when searching for inspiration. In our family, favorites are particularly useful when I am not home and my husband has to pack himself. No need for him to rack his brain, to call me, to run to the mall or to order for fast (junk) food. A simple check at our history and the kids’ favorites: he always finds visual inspirations among the kids favorites that he’s motivated to pack.


4- Inspire your friends

How often have you been asking friends around: “What do you give for lunch to your kids?”. “How do you have them eat veggies?”.“My daughter loved your kid’s lunch but she couldn’t tell me what it was”.
Wouldn’t it be helpful to share pictures between friends and being able to retrieve any idea easily? It can also help discover new ideas, new items, new ways to present a dish or package a dessert…


5- Go back to your History

On your way to grocery shopping? Planning to leave on a business trip and leaving your partner facing alone the lunchbox grind? Being able to go back to what you’ve done, to what you like to pack, to what your kids actually eat, is an efficient way to set up in a snap your grocery list. This allows you also to simply select 5 lunchbox ideas to share with your partner while you are away.

There are lots of ways to share lunchbox ideas today, but if you think about it, none of them actually empowers us to collaborate like Teuko does. Teuko allows you to connect to other parents like you and make the most of every inspiration you go through. With Teuko, you can easily turn any idea into a lunchbox that your own kids will love.

Give it a try and tell us what you think.



#Tips

Add Teuko to the Home Screen on your mobile devices


Make sure to access Teuko from everywhere and at anytime. Teuko is a unique solution to get in one place lunchbox ideas from other parents like you, the history of what you’ve already done and simply set up your grocery list.

Create a shortcut on your mobile devices, Teuko will enable you to set your mind at rest to tackle the lunchbox grind.
Find out below how you can Add Teuko to the Home Screen on your mobile devices.




#News

Beta is Back Online!


May has arrived and you know what it means: few more weeks of school lunches to pack… but not necessarily the easiest ones, right? Don't let the lunchbox blues catch you: we have you covered.

Teuko is back online with improved features you asked for and more. Cheer up, our community will help you go through these last weeks of school lunches like a star! Together, we can make lunchbox packing easier and so more fun.



Explore Teuko, build your community of friends, build your history of lunch boxes, and tell us what you think. We want to know how we can make Teuko work best to help you rock next Back-to-School!

Love,
The Teuko Team


Meeting with a #TeukoFriend!


Meeting in person with @lyloute_13, one of our earliest Teuko followers!
From New York to San Francisco, Teuko Friends are everywhere! Thank you for your support!
We can't wait for many more meetings with our followers!




Thanks for your inspiration!


Thank you for celebrating National Nutrition Month with Teuko.
Every week in March we suggested on our social networks a seasonal food item to include in your lunch boxes. Congratulation for all of you who did assemble that food item in the kids lunches and shared a pic with our team #Teuko! We hope your kids appreciated to discover new foods maybe. Ours totally loved it, so we may play a little bit more with food challenges in the coming weeks...it feels so much easier to pack new foods when you know you are not alone trying!


See more lunchbox inspirations on Instagram!

Love,
The Teuko Team


Celebrate National Nutrition Month with Teuko!


National Nutrition Month® is a nutrition education and information campaign created annually in March by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. This is a perfect opportunity for all of us to raise awareness on the importance of making informed food choices and developing sound eating and physical activity habits.


To celebrate, Teuko is proposing all the lunchbox makers to participate in a very easy and very fun challenge in March. Every Friday, we will suggest on our social networks a food item to include any time during the next week in your lunch boxes. Show us how you assemble that food item in a lunchbox and share your inspiration by sending a pic at contact@teuko.com or sharing your pic on social networks with the hashtag #Teuko.

Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram to participate in our #Teuko Challenge!

We’re looking forward to seeing all your great lunchbox inspirations!

Love,
The Teuko Team


Thank you


Thank you to all our Teuko Friends who participated during the last few weeks to the Beta Testing of our solution Teuko, the social network for lunchbox makers.

Beta Testing is closed now, waiting for feedback. We hope to come back very soon with improved features and experience for all of our users.

Stay tuned, subscribe to our newsletter to get notified of updates.


Love,
The Teuko Team


Week of Taste


The Teuko Team :
parents & volunteers

Few years back, Alex and I met at our kids' school. We both love helping our neighbors and friends, and thus, we try to be present, help and volunteer as much as we can. Our kids' school is one community we love dearly and it was a no-brainer for us to go give a hand for a special event organized this week, the Week of Taste.

Some chefs came to interact with the kids, making them discover new food. The director even organized a big game, the idea being about to connect kids with healthy and gourmet food. As parents, Alex and I were volunteers and we prepared some plates with tiny samples of yummy gourmet food cooked with love by SF chefs.

During this special week, I also had the chance to come in my son's classroom, for talking about lunchtime: when, where and what do kids have lunch in France and in the USA? What's different and is there something in common yet?

He and his friends are pretty young, 4 and 5yo, so I prepared a quick presentation, and then, I organized a game with the teacher, using Teuko. I was pretty happy to see that the slides I prepared were easy for them to understand and I was also amazed to see how attentive the kids were. The goal of this presentation was to tell them that, yes, even if they bring lunch boxes everyday at school and that we have busy lives, they can choose good yummy food and have the equivalent of a French gourmet menu!


Jess talking with kids about lunchtime


We used the "Add Menu" feature of Teuko for playing together: "What would be the lunchbox of your dream?"
A different kid was asked to choose just one course of the menu. At the beginning, only my little boy and one of his friend wanted to participate and choose the food, and little by little everybody in the class wanted to choose and play! It was a fun team work and we succeeded in creating two complete menus together. The enthusiasm of the kids was such a great experience! I'm very thankful to them and to their teacher, their smiles and positive energy were amazing.

Here the menus created by the kids:

Menu 1

  • Appetizer: Cucumber salad
  • Entrée: Ground turkey with black lentils and corn kernels
  • Cheese: Chocolate pudding
  • Dessert: Blueberries
  • Drink: Tap water

Menu 2

  • Appetizer: Corn bread
  • Entrée: Sautéed chards with an hard-boiled egg and garlic naan
  • Cheese: Vanilla cream
  • Dessert: Cherries
  • Drink: Bottled water


Even though Teuko is created for parents and for all the other "older" lunchbox makers, this experience showed that making our kids participate with us for creating new lunchbox menus can be a fantastic way to get new original lunchbox ideas, and that it's also a fantastic way to value their opinion, to know them better, to know what food they like and what food they want to discover.

You're not a parent or you're not having kids around? Well, maybe you have friends or family members packing everyday? By discovering and organizing your lunchbox ideas, you can know the food you like and the food you want to discover too!

So... what's next in your lunchbox? Create your own Week of Taste with Teuko ;-)

Love,
Jess


Beta Test


We've just started testing the Beta of Teuko, our new and unique network of lunchbox makers!
This initial phase of testing includes all of you who signed up at Teuko.com, social network fans and a lucky few selected upon the great interest they’ve already shown in our project. Because we value your support, we wanted to give you the very first look at the Beta.

Beta testing will run through February... Try the Beta, invite your friends to try it, and make this new network yours!
Please note that this version has been optimized for desktops and tablets, though you can use it also on your smartphone. Many more features and improvements are still on their way, so feel free to share any feedback or suggestion at any time.

Love,
Jess & Alex - the Teuko Team


Happy New Year!


The Teuko Team wishes you a Happy New Year! Best wishes for 2017!