What goes into a great Christmas card photo?
Posts Tagged ‘Reviews & Sponsored’
I’m not a food blogger, but I play one on the internet. I love reading blogs about food, pinning recipes on Pinterest (my Food and Drink and Dessert boards are my fullest by far), reading articles about food photography and – every once in a while – try my own hand at creating recipes.
I’m not an expert by any means, but when BlogHer told me about two new programs from ConAgra I knew they could feed my love of food blogging.
Before I tell you about ConAgra’s site, I wanted to say when I first read the email I was a little doubtful about working with them. But once I realized how many of their brands I had in my kitchen right at this exact moment (Alexia fries, Gulden’s mustard, Egg Beaters, Hebrew National hot dogs, Hunt’s tomato sauce, Orville Redenbacher’s popcorn, and Reddi-wip) it seemed silly to pass it up. If this isn’t your thing, that’s totally cool too and feel free to skip it.
The Dish is an online resource center for all bloggers who post food content or who WANT to post food content.
In their Seasonal Spotlight section you can find tips for keeping your blog content fresh and seasonally relevant.
Under Ask Our Team, they have put together an expert panel that includes Phil Lempert, savings expert; Dan Skinner, editor-in-chief; Abby Penich, ReadySetEat Community Manager; and several bloggers.
The Recipe Resources section is just what it sounds like – a round up of some of the best recipes from ConAgra’s recipe site ReadySetEat. Free tip: do NOT go look at the recipes when it’s 5:43 pm and you’re starving. Seriously, how much do I want this corn on the cob now? SO MUCH.
But in my opinion, the best part of their site is First Look, First Taste. Through the site you can sign up to receive coupons, samples and other exclusive content – and all you need is a blog URL. It would a great way for someone looking to expand into food blogging to find new ingredients to include and for seasoned food bloggers to get expert advice and tips to share with their readers.
There’s some great content on The Dish already, but I’m hoping they plan to expand in the coming months. I’d love to see even more focus on fresh, local ingredients that can be used in conjunction with their products to make easy family meals.
ReadySetEat has tons of great, fast, easy recipes that can be sorted by very useful categories (vegetarian, healthy, etc) but I’d like to see The Dish feature more of them, especially grouped by type – for example, Mexican recipes featuring a veggie option, a beef option and a chicken option.
Or even one recipe that can be used all three ways. Hey, that’s actually a great idea for a recipe series – see, The Dish has already started inspiring me to blog better!
Want to be entered for a chance to win a $50 Visa gift card from BlogHer and ConAgra Foods? Just leave a comment below telling me which section of The Dish sounds the most interesting to you!
No duplicate comments. You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods: a) Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post b) Tweet about this promotion with hash tag #sweepstakes and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post c) Blog about this promotion and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post d) For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry. This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected.
The Official Rules are available here. This sweepstakes runs from 8/22/2012-9/8/2012.
Be sure to visit ConAgra Foods’ brand page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ reviews and find more chances to win!
You know what I love about the business end of blogging? Getting a chance to work with brands I already use and recommend. I ordered Caroline’s birth announcements from Paper Culture (Although for the LIFE of me I can’t find them on the blog – did I not post it? I know I ordered so many I sent them to everyone from my old boss to the mailman)(It was this one, in case you were curious) because I won a credit on another blog. They were the nicest, best quality stationary I’ve ever ordered. Paper Culture uses beautiful, thick, 130-lb weight card stock AND rounded corners on their announcements. Rounded corners are pretty much my favorite thing. Add their fun, modern typography and their commitment to being extremely eco-friendly and you get a brand that is totally doing it right.
So when I was offered a credit to Paper Culture through the Global Influence Network in exchange for sharing my experience with you I jumped at the chance. Especially since Paper Culture has just launched a new product – bamboo wall art.
I am a huge fan of any company that turns my photos into art without needing a frame. I’ve ordered several before – mounted on foam board or on canvas – but the bamboo wall art is by FAR the nicest. The photo is perfectly crisp and clear, even though it was blown up to 8.5 inches square. The interface is simple and easy to understand. There are options with text, options with several photos and the one I went with, a plain photo. My only complaint was that the photo editing software built in to the Paper Culture site is TOO much fun. It took me an hour just to pick the perfect photo and then another hour playing with black and white, tints, effects (very Instagramesque) and sharpness.
In the end I used just a tiny color bump and a crop to turn one a snapshot of Caroline swinging into the newest piece in my family room wall gallery.
I realize with the yellow wall and the weird lighting in the room the wall art looks weird in every single shot – but I promise in person it is nicer than any of these. Comparable to a professional print.
If you have a photo you’re dying to get up on the wall, I found this on the Paper Culture site: Save 25% off all Bamboo Wall Art by entering voucher code: BAMB25 on the Review Order page before Aug 15, 2012. I’m going to keep my eye out for more codes, since I’m guessing the grandparents would LOVE these as Christmas presents.
I was given a $50 credit towards my purchase at Paper Culture in exchange of my honest review through the Global Influence Network. No other compensation was provided.
Have you heard of Wittlebee yet? It’s one of the hot new subscription boxes the internets are all going crazy for these days, except it’s just as useful as it is cool. Avoid screaming trips to the mall and super expensive binges in the children’s department at Target by having your kid’s clothes delivered monthly right to your door!
Wittlebee is a monthly kids clothing club for children ages 0 to 5 years. You create a style profile, give your kids’ ages and sizes, check a few boxes to let them know what kind of basics you could use most for the season you’re in and BOOM! For $39.99 a month you get over $100 worth of stylish kids clothes delivered in a happy little white box. Check out their super-helpful FAQ section for more details and answers to your questions.
I loved filling out the style profile for Caroline and they ask all the right questions – favorite colors, whether she’s a diva or a hipster, even if she prefers polka-dots over lady bugs. And my box definitely reflected my answers. I received one pair of leggings, one pair of shorts, one t-shirt dress, one t-shirt, and two legging/dress combo outfits.
I was also impressed with the attention to sizing details – I said Caroline was wearing size 18 month clothing and all the items were approximately the same size, even though some were labeled 24 months or 2 years. Those brands obviously run smaller and it’s AMAZING that Wittlebee pays enough attention to detail to know that.
Speaking of brands…
I was pleased that I recognized and am already a fan of a couple of brands in the box. The brands I didn’t recognize I would categorize and mid- to high-end stuff (the kind of thing I’d only buy if I lucked out and saw it at TJMaxx). But the nicest surprise was the outfits. Man, I LOVE pre-coordinated outfits for little kids.
My 100% honest opinion is that Wittlebee is adorable, fun and definitely a good value. It would be an AMAZING gift for a mom friend – especially for a mom on her second or third baby who doesn’t have the energy to do laundry, let alone shop for new kid’s clothes. The quality is excellent, I got a good variety of items and their stylists have great taste. Be sure to check out Wittlebee on Facebook and Twitter for the latest news, brand announcements and insider info!
p.s. If you use this link you can get $10 off your first month’s box!
(I was sent a Wittlebee box at no cost so I could write an honest review. No other compensation or direction was provided and all opinions are my own. If you sign up through one of the links I do get a referral fee.)
We are a snack-loving family. At any given moment my purse contains at least three granola bars, string cheese, baby squeeze pouches, three sippy cups, fruit snacks, and apple and two snack traps. Snacks are great for keeping the kids busy while I focus on my workout at Stroller Strides. Carrying around extra snacks mean we don’t have to rush home in time for lunch if we’re having fun at the playground or want to make an impromptu trip to the aquarium. Snacks work well for both kids’ eating styles – Caroline eats TONS OF FOOD and needs snacks between meals while Evan is meh about eating his meals but is much more likely to snack. And bringing my own snacks for all of us means I am much less likely to swing through a drive-thru for “just a snack” and end up with an entire double cheeseburger meal and a milkshake (how does that happen?!)
So when my friend Alena asked if I’d be interested in trying out a PackIt lunch bag I said yes immediately. PackIt is a freezable personal cooler that keeps your food colder, fresher and safer for up to ten hours – no ice or bulky toxic ice packs needed. You just store the folded PackIt bag in your freezer until you’re ready to fill it and go!
I tried out a Personal Cooler and a Shop Cooler last week and loved them both. The Shop Cooler was perfect for keeping my ice cream, chicken nuggets and Cool Whip cold on the way home from the grocery store – even though I stopped to pick up a couple
dozen bottles of wine on the way. Plus my Stop & Shop gives a 5 cent discount for every reusable bag you bring. Score!
The Personal Cooler was perfect for carrying the daily snacks that are better kept cool – cheese, yogurt, juice boxes, fruit, veggies, and milk. You know, the healthy stuff.
My snacks stayed refrigerator-cold all morning, which was definitely more pleasant than eating soft, warm cheese that got squished in the bottom of my bag. And when we got home I just stuck the PackIt back in the freezer so it would be ready for the next day!
PackIt Coolers are PVC-free, BPA-free, lead-free, non-toxic, earth-safe and reusable. They fold compactly in the freezer for storage and keeps food cold at USDA-safe temperatures. They come in six sizes and tons of cute colors and patterns. PackIt even has a size for wine bottles – it’s like the KNOW ME. Check out all their products and get more information on their website.
How would you like to win a free PackIt Social Cooler? It’s perfect for picnics, a day at the beach, ball games, day trips and all the summer fun that’s quickly approaching.
To enter, just like PackIt on Facebook then come back and leave a comment telling me you did. So easy! I’ll leave the comments open until Friday April 6th at 5 pm and choose a winner using Random.org. Make sure you use a real email when you comment so I can notify you if you win. Good luck!