Monday, April 20, 2009

Win an HP Photosmart All-in-One Printer

BlogHer and HP are sponsoring the fantastic opportunity for me to give away a printer just to the readers of A Veggie Venture and Kitchen Parade. It's completely easy, scroll down for all the details.

UPDATE We Have a Winner!

April 28, 2009 -- Congratulations to Cheryl A from Bakersfield, CA who is the lucky winner of the HP wireless printer. Many, many thanks to all who entered the contest, your comments were creative and inspiring. If I could have awarded a printer to each and every one of you, I would have. Til next time!

Here's Why You Want This Printer for Yourself!

Sure, if you already have a printer at home, you could gift this printer to someone in your circle of family and friends. But there's lots of reason smart reasons to want it for yourself.

This post is sponsored by BlogHer and HP and is the independent review
of Alanna Kellogg of Kitchen Parade and A Veggie Venture

Finally, Wireless That Works and Gorgeous Home-Printed Photos

THE PRINTER is the HP Photosmart C6300 All-in-One printer. Stuff I like:
  • EASY WIRELESS SETUP What a great experience! The HP Photosmart is my third wireless printer. But the HP Photosmart is the first wireless printer to actually work wirelessly. The wireless set up was quick and easy -- the printer detected my home network then took over from there. Setup took about an hour, from unpacking the box to the first test pages.
  • TWO CARTRIDGES The printer has two paper cartridges, one for regular copy paper and another for photo paper. This makes it so easy to switch back and forth between regular printing and photo printing, no more fumbling around with different papers.
  • GORGEOUS PHOTOS I was all prepared to be underwhelmed by the photos straight off the printer. Instead, the photos are completely beautiful -- sharp, with great saturation and natural colors. Gorgeous. My new guilty pleasure: printing photos at home for frames around the house!
  • ALL-IN-ONE PRINTER, SCANNER, COPIER Even though the photos are so beautiful, this printer isn't just for photos, it also prints, scans and copies. Former models of the All-in-One also included a fax, I wish this feature hadn't been dropped, even if faxing isn't so common anymore. I also wish it were more intuitive to switch back and forth between 'draft' printing and 'photo' printing (note: this may well be a MAC issue).
  • INDIVIDUAL COLOR CARTRIDGES Everyone knows you can go broke buying printer ink. I'm not saying that HP's ink is cheap. But the color cartridges are individual, so you can replace each one as it's used up. This is especially important for home-based businesses, say, where a blue (or red or whatever) logo might use up one color faster than the other colors.
  • SMART WEB PRINTING For PC owners, the HP Photosmart includes software free software called Smart Web Printing. Many people struggle with printing recipes from websites, I think this would be an excellent way to select only what you want to print, saving ink and paper both. (Sorry, I haven't been able to test this myself since HP doesn't yet support this feature on a Mac.)

CAN YOU PRINT ARCHIVE-QUALITY PHOTOS ON A HOME PRINTER? I spent a long time on the phone one day with the 'paper crafting' guru at HP. I've always been under the impression that you couldn't get enough print quality from home-printed photos, that for photos to last several generations, you need to print at a photo production house (which excludes nearly all one-hour photo places).

YES (SO LONG AS) I am now convinced that if I use quality paper and quality ink from the SAME company (they have to work together, to last), then you can get long-lasting archive-quality photos at home. So this gives me the confidence to print photos at home for use in my photo scrapbooks. I’ll still use a photo print service for big orders (like when I have lots of shots with multiple copies), but now I know that I can fill in pages with odd shots printed at home. PLUS when I print occasional shots for friends and family, I know that if THEY scrapbook the photos, they'll last.


~ more information about the HP Photosmart All-in-One printer
on this page at ~

Live Wirelessly. Print Wirelessly.

What's this printer worth? Right now, Google Shopping says that the retail purchase price of the HP 6380 is $147 - $228. So c'mon. Enter to win your very own! All you need to do is leave a comment -- just follow the instructions directly above the comment box.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Fage Yogurt, the No-Guilt Indulgence

Lucky day! Over at, there's going to be a whole lot of yogurt indulgence. That's because every single day between now and May 6th, someone's going to win a case of FAGE Yogurt.
It could be YOU -- details below!

This is a compensated review from BlogHer and FAGE.

FAGE is 100% natural Greek yogurt. It's free of additives, preservatives, and sweeteners and is so thick, you'll call it 'Ridiculously Thick Yogurt'. FAGE recently invited 10 lucky BlogHer Reviewers to sample their yogurt and was so pleased with what we had to say, now they want others to have the same experience!

Okay, that was the official stuff. But I'm willing to bet that in sixty seconds, readers are going to ask two questions.
  • How in heck do you pronounce 'Fage'?
  • How in heck can you get your hands on some of this stuff?
I promise to answer both questions, but bear with me a minute.

I remember my very first cup of yogurt, way back when I was a kid. My folks packed the kids and the dog in the station wagon for a thousand-mile trip to Florida. To save money, we ate from a cooler. For lunch one day, Mom bought yogurt -- lemon and peach, I think. Instantly, I was a yogurt fiend. Then I lived in Europe and discovered really good yogurt, thick and creamy and tangy, unsugared but still sweet. When I came back, American yogurt -- yuck, not for me, not anymore. (Who's noticed how much yogurt we must collectively eat? At the supermarket the other day, I counted. There were 24 feet of yogurt, six shelves high -- and NONE of the good stuff.) Fast forward to maybe 2005 when Greek yogurt started to appear, finally, a yogurt worth eating in the States.

So when BlogHer and Fage offered the chance to sample some FAGE Greek yogurt, the answer was an enthusiastic "Yes". I've purchased Fage on occasion but mostly, my go-to yogurt is a Lebanese yogurt called 'labna'. So I did a side-by-side taste test, comparing the full-fat labna that I buy to the Total 0% FAGE. Not a fair test, you think, comparing a full-fat yogurt to a no-fat yogurt?

Here's the thing. The Total 0% FAGE won, hands down, based on taste alone. Add in that the FAGE 0% has about 75% fewer calories? Goodbye labna, hello FAGE.

(Funny thing is, I never-ever LIKE non-fat products, see this post I wrote for BlogHer about lower-fat products worth buying.)

So for me, FAGE 0% is a no-guilt indulgence. For an after-supper treat, I especially love it with a little agave nectar drizzled over top, maybe with some toasted almonds or a little cinnamon. But I use Greek yogurt in recipes too, here's my Kitchen Parade recipes that call for yogurt.

FAGE has other yogurts too, the FAGE original that's to-live-for good, some individual serving yogurts with fruit or honey in handy-dandy little side cups, perfect for breakfast on the run or lunch at your desk. These are sweet for my taste but hey, that's just me.

OKAY, so now back to those burning questions.

  • How do you pronounce FAGE? fah-yeh
  • How can you get some FAGE to sample? Head on over to this special page at to enter the daily contest. I'd really love for several readers from A Veggie Venture and Kitchen Parade to win!

Want to know more about FAGE? Check