Archive for the ‘Contests, Deals & Freebies’ Category

You Child Can Win a Trip to NYC and $2,500 U.S. Savings Bond

Monday, November 8th, 2010

Does your first- through twelfth-grader love to write? Here’s a great opportunity for kids to win a a trip to New York City and money for college.

Olive Garden is holding its 15th-annual Pasta Tales essay-writing contest. This year, they’re asking students to “Describe how furthering your education beyond high school will help make your dreams come true.”  The contest grand prize is a three-day trip to New York City and a $2,500 savings bond.

The contest will give students in the U.S. and Canada the opportunity to share their stories in essays of 50 to 250 words.  Entry forms and complete rules are available on Olive Garden’s website and at local Olive Garden restaurants.

In addition to Olive Garden’s Pasta Tales grand prize of a three-day trip to New York City, including dinner at the Olive Garden in Times Square and a $2,500 savings bond, winners will be named in each grade category and awarded a $500 savings bond and a family dinner at their local Olive Garden restaurant.

Entries must include the writer’s first and last name, complete address, phone number, grade, date of birth and a statement that the work is his or her own.  Entries must be submitted either online or postmarked by Jan. 21, 2011 and sent to Pasta Tales, PMB 2000, 6278 N. Federal Highway, Fort Lauderdale, FL, 33308-1916.

Submissions will be judged based on creativity, adherence to theme, organization, grammar, punctuation and spelling by the Quill and Scroll Society of the College of Journalism and Communications at the University of Iowa, with winners selected by Olive Garden.

We Have a Winner!

Wednesday, September 15th, 2010

Congratulations to Rick Hefner, who won the drawing for the terrific new book, Get-It-Done Guy’s 9 Steps to Work Less and Do More, by Stever Robbins!

I loved Rick’s comment on his entry: “I would like the book to give to my wife. She epitomizes the supermom – shuttling kids, helping at school and home, and supporting all her friends. Now, she’ll have to find time to read it! (Or maybe I’ll read it to her, while I’m massaging her feet…)

That’s our kind of guy! (And we’re going to check in with your wife to make sure you make good on that foot-massage promise, Rick.)

Book Giveaway! Get-It-Done Guy’s 9 Steps to Work Less and Do More

Sunday, September 12th, 2010

What busy parent couldn’t use a little help when it comes to getting more accomplished in a day — while actually doing less work?

Get-It-Done Guy’s 9 Steps to Work Less and Do More, by Stever Robbins, is a playful, yet serious, guide to creating a more productive life. It lays out nine skills that you can apply anywhere you want to get greater results with less work.

And one lucky Parent Talk Today reader is going to receive a free copy!

To enter the giveaway, you need to do just two things:

1. “Like” our Parent Talk Today fan page if you haven’t already done so. (Just click on the “Like” button over in the right sidebar.)

2. Leave a comment below telling us why YOU should win the book.

3. If you are reading this blog on one of our wonderful parenting-magazine-partner websites, where you are unable to leave comments, you can still enter. Simply visit our Facebook page and “like” us. Then send an email with your comment to kathy at It’s that easy!

Winner will be chosen in a random drawing and will be announced on Wednesday, Sept. 15.

We Have a Winner!

Thursday, April 15th, 2010

Parent Talk Today reader Ellen Rowan of is the winner of a $300 gift card from Campus Quilt Co. Ellen will be talking about her quilt on her blog, Zoom About Ellen - Video Journaling and Sharing Ways to Dream Big And Live Authentically.

Ellen is the mother of two kids, ages 10 and 8. She lives in North Bend, Washington. Her blog is so much fun and so creative. I know she’ll come up with terrific items for a great quilt, and I can’t wait to see it and read about it!

Congratulations, Ellen! Thanks to all of our readers who entered the contest. And a big thanks to Campus Quilt Co for making this all possible!

Win a Gorgeous Custom Quilt from Campus Quilt Co.!

Monday, April 12th, 2010

I’m guessing you’ve done what I did. As your children got older, you gave away many of their baby clothes — but you kept the ones that meant the most to you. The ones that spark special memories of a little boy running around the house in Buzz Lightyear jammies or a little girl wearing a Tinkerbell t-shirt.

Or perhaps you have memories, in the form of t-shirts, from high school, college, ski trips, etc. and you’re longing to have them made into a keepsake t-shirt quilt.

Well, the wonderful folks at Campus Quilt Co. took my collection of Matt’s special baby and toddler clothes and turned those clothes into the most gorgeous hand-crafted quilt I’ve ever seen.

Here’s Matt wearing his favorite yellow fish t-shirt, which is now square #1. :)

Full disclosure: This quilt was created for me at no charge so that I could review their workmanship and share the info with you.

Prices run from $129 for a 9-square lap quilt (the squares on these quilts are big — 15 inches) to $419 for a 49-square king-size quilt, which would truly be huge!

These are the prices if the quilt is made from t-shirts. There are additional charges for doing special detailed work with baby clothes, adding extra fabric between the squares, etc. Call 502-968-2850 and they can give you all the details re extras.

My quilt is a full size with extra fabric between the squares, which makes it a bit larger. Matt is 5’9″ tall, so you can get an idea how big it is! It fits across the top of our queen-size bed and hangs over a bit.

I have to say, I’ve become a true fan of this company. I’m following them on their Facebook fan page, too. (Check it out for special deals and lots of great photos showing their work.)

I have to show you some close-up photos to show the detailed workmanship. I told my husband it felt as if someone who really cared about our family (and who also had a lot of talent!) made the quilt. There was such attention to detail regarding how the clothes were pressed and arranged on the squares, etc. It really wowed me.

The company also takes great care to make sure your baby clothes or t-shirts are transported safely. They send you a kit that explains everything, and they include a large, heavy-duty mailing bag and a pre-addressed label for shipping.

Then they email you when they receive your t-shirts or baby clothes. They also get in touch with a tracking number when they ship the quilt back to you. They understand how important these memories are to you and they make sure you’re informed at every step of the way. I loved that.

And here’s the best news: Campus Quilt Co. is giving away a gift certificate for $150 to a lucky Parent Talk Today reader. (And if you’re a blogger and are willing to blog about your finished quilt and link to Campus Quilt Company, they will upgrade the gift card to $300!)

To enter the contest, just leave a comment below telling us why you’d like to have your own custom quilt. The winner will be picked at random using The contest ends on Thursday, April 15 at noon Pacific Time and the winner will be notified by email and announced here on Friday April 16.

If winner does not claim the prize by noon PST on April 18, 2010, he or she will forfeit the prize to an alternate winner who will be drawn at random. USA and Canada residents only, please.

BONUS: You can be entered in the contest more than once by doing any or all of the things mentioned below. When you do one of these things, just leave a separate comment here so I can enter your name in the drawing the correct number of times:

  1. Become of fan of Campus Quilt Co. on Facebook
  2. Mention this contest on your blog and link to Parent Talk Today
  3. Subscribe to Parent Talk Today’s RSS feed (see upper-right sidebar)
  4. Mention this contest on Twitter
  5. Share this post on social media in any other way (see buttons at the end of the post)
  6. Add Parent Talk Today to your blogroll or add our button to your sidebar (see right sidebar)
  7. Become a fan of Parent Talk Today on Facebook

I can’t wait to hear what you would include in your quilt, and why you’d like to win this generous gift certificate. Be sure to leave your comments before noon PST on Thursday!

Giveaway! How’s Your Mommy Confidence?

Thursday, March 18th, 2010

Had one of those days? No problem. Just climb in the tub with some bubbles and relax with Kimberley Clayton Blaine‘s book Mommy Confidence: 8 Easy Steps to Reclaiming Balance, Motivation and Your Inner Diva.

Want to win a free copy? Just leave a comment sharing a tip: Tell us how you find balance in your life as a mom and how you reclaim your inner diva — even if it’s only once in a blue moon!

I’ll choose one winner at random next week and announce the winner’s name here. Can’t wait to read your tips!

P.S. And don’t forget to become a fan of Parent Talk Today on Facebook. Just click on the link here or in the left sidebar. We’re having a good time over there, too. Come join us!

And the Winner of the $75 ScanDigital Gift Card Is…

Tuesday, November 24th, 2009


Congratulations to Mollie Bryan, who won the drawing for the $75 ScanDigital gift card! Mollie will love having her family’s old videos, slides or photos (or all three!) put on a DVD to preserve them for future generations. It also makes them a lot easier to enjoy right now.

Thanks to the great folks at ScanDigital for providing the giveaway for Parent Talk Today readers. And thanks to those who entered!

P.S. I love this photo of my husband, Randy, with Santa. (Seems Santa was a bit more somber back in the day!)

Giveaway: Give The Gift of Memories With a $75 ScanDigital Gift Card

Monday, November 16th, 2009

Last year, I sent my family’s old photos to ScanDigital, and the resulting DVD full of family memories made me so happy (my family loved it, too!), I asked ScanDigital to help me share the fun with you this year with a giveaway. (Thanks, guys!)

Send ScanDigital your family’s old photo albums, slides, video tapes and reel-to-reel film and they will convert everything to a high-quality DVD.

Your family will love being able to see their photos and video at the click of a mouse — and you’ll feel good knowing that everything is safe and protected.

ScanDigital also offers other thoughtful gifts such as custom holiday slideshows and pre-loaded digital photo frames.

Cool stuff. Nice people. And they will be very careful with your treasured memories and will make sure everything is shipped safely back to you.

To enter the giveaway, you just need to do two things:

  • Subscribe to Parent Talk Today. (Easy!)
  • Leave a comment telling why you’d like to win the $75 gift card and how you’d like to preserve your family’s memories. (And you know the drill: No “pick me!” or “I want to win!” comments, please. Those won’t be entered in the drawing.)

The winner will be chosen from a random drawing and will be announced here on Monday, Nov. 23.

Can’t wait to read your comments!

(Lots of!) Free Toys at GoodyBlog

Friday, October 16th, 2009

10-16-09Got little ones? GoodyBlog is giving away every single toy from their holiday gift guide for the next month (starting with baby toys, then moving on to toddler, preschool, little kid, and big kid.)

Talk about getting a jump start on your holiday shopping! Check it out.

P.S. GoodyBlog is associated with Parents Magazine. Check out the three-years-for-the-price-of-one subscription deal they have going right now. Only 12 bucks!

Giveaway! Join Me For a VIP Experience at Disneyland!

Monday, October 12th, 2009

10-12-09I’m so excited! And you will be too. Disneyland has invited one lucky Parent Talk Today reader and three guests to join me, along with other selected parenting bloggers and their guests, for a special VIP day at Disneyland on Saturday, November 21.

That’s right! A family of four. For free. You’ll get the VIP treatment while previewing Disneyland’s holiday happenings. What a great way to get in the holiday spirit!

If you’ve never been to Disneyland at the holidays, you’re in for an amazing experience. Sleeping Beauty’s castle and It’s a Small World will be decked out with unbelievable lights. The smell of gingerbread on Main Street will entice you to stop by the bakery for a bite. And don’t forget the Haunted Mansion, all set for the holidays in true Jack Skellington fashion…

And did I mention carolers? A parade? Santa? It will be an unforgettable day for you and your guests.

Want to enter? Here’s all you need to do:

1)    Subscribe to Parent Talk Today.

2)     In “Comments,” tell us your favorite Disney-related memory. It doesn’t have to be specifically about Disneyland. One of my favorite Disney memories is seeing my son Matt, at age 3, watching “Toy Story” and then (wearing his “Woody” jammies, which he got for Christmas) riding his stick horse around the house.

10-12-09-1This giveaway will remain open through 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 21. The winner will be drawn at random and will be announced here on Friday, Oct. 23.

Hey, I’m a mom. I have my rules! The winner will receive parking and admission to the park that day (for 4 people) along with participation in our activities and one meal as part of the Holiday Celebration reception on Saturday. While you don’t have to live in Southern California to enter, you must provide your own transportation and lodging if you are coming from out of the area. The winner and guests must attend the event and must be willing to remain with the VIP group for the entire event. You must be willing to be photographed by Disneyland Press Relations and by Parent Talk Today. This giveaway is non-transferable.

I can’t wait to hear your Disney memories!

10-12-09-3P.S. Want more shots at winning? Some of my favorite parenting bloggers are running their own contests:

Domestic Chicky

in Wonderland

Babes in

Metropolitan Mama

Glamorous Life Association

Rules vary on each blog, so be sure to read the entire post on each one before entering. Good luck!