Excailbur Dehydrator Review, Recipes and Giveaway

Excalibur Dehydrators are considered to be the best dehydrator on the market. After receiving mine and using it I can see why they are so greatly loved. The Excalibur 5 tray is perfect for my small family and our dehydrating needs. In the short time I have had mine, I have made fruit rolls, “sun-dried” tomatoes, coconut bacon,tofu jerky, kale chips, and dehydrated fruits. In addition it can be used to make, granola, meat jerky, crackers, raw foods, bread crumbs, dried herbs, and more. A quick search for dehydrator recipes will give you a good idea of how valuable a dehydrator can be.

Kale Chips are a favorite snack in this mama’s house. Everyone, including the dog and cat, love them. They can be purchased in the store at the cost of $7.99 for 2.5oz. WOW, they are good but at that price we can not buy them often. Instead,I can pick kale from the garden, buy some at the farmers market or grocery store and make my own for a fraction of the cost. I like knowing what ingredients go in to my family’s food and I like saving money. Here is the recipe I followed to make these delicious and healthy chips.

Spicy and Cheesy Kale Chips

Adapted from The Best Cheesy Kale Chips


  • 1 1/2 or 2 bunches of kale, washed, dried, stems removed and cut in to bite size pieces.
  • 1 cup cashews, soaked in water for 2 or more hours and then drained.
  • 2-3 T lemon juice
  • 2 T nutritional yeast ( I used a bit more, I love nutritional yeast)
  • 1 red bell pepper chopped
  • 1 t ground chipotle chili pepper
  • a dash of sea salt
  • cayenne pepper (to taste)
  1. Add all ingredients expect the kale to a blender or food processor. Process until smooth.
  2. Massage mixture in to kale with hands.
  3. Dehydrate at 115° until crispy. (8-12 hours)

Here they are in all of their cheesy, crispy goodness!!

kale chips excalibur dehydrator giveaway


Fruit Rolls Many of the fruit roll brand on the market actually include very little fruit in them. They are loaded with corn syrup, artificial coloring/flavoring and preservatives. They are really candy disguised as a fruit snack. So, I decided to make fresh, natural and delicious fruit rolls in the Excalibur Dehydrator. They turned out so good and were really easy to make. All you need is some fruit of your choosing, apple sauce ( I used 365 Unsweetened organic apple sauce), parchment paper, a blender and the dehydrator. This is a great recipe to have the kids help with. They can choose their own fruit combinations.

Excalibur Dehydrator giveaway


holiday gift guide


One reader will win a Excalibur Dehydrator!

To enter, tell me YOUR favorite comfort food in a comment below.

Want extra entries? (Leave a comment for each entry method you do and either leave your username or the URL of your “share”)

To enter, tell me YOUR favorite comfort food in a comment below.

Want extra entries? (Leave a comment for each entry method you do and either leave your username or the URL of your “share”)




*Follow Me on Pinterest

*Share this giveaway on any social networking site- can be done 1x/day but leave the url of each share in it’s own comment!

Sample was received to facilitate this review. Opinions are my own. This giveaway will end on December 10 , 2012 at 11:59PM EST. Winner has 48 hours to respond. US only. One entry per household.



AT&T is granting wishes this holiday season with a Wish-A-Day Sweepstakes! #attwishaday

at&t wish-a-day sweepstakes logo

With the holidays right around the corner, we’re excited to announce AT&T’s Wish-A-Day Sweepstakes! From November 23rd through December 20th, AT&T will feature AT&T employees’ “wish list” items as gift of the day. For those that enter they will get the chance to win smartphones, tablets and more!

We all, I am sure, have someone on our shopping list who has a gadget or device on their list (even if it’s our own!!) and I love that AT&T is granting wishes- not just for us, but with Make a Wish Foundation.

You can also help someone else’s holiday wishes come true and nominate a friend. AT&T has partnered with the Make a Wish Foundation for this sweepstakes and every week someone’s nomination will win an additional prize.

M80 contacted me to write a blog post on behalf of AT&T. I will receive a promotional item to thank me for sharing this sweepstakes.  Opinions are my own.

Kindle Fire HD Giveaway #HGG

kindle fire hd giveaway

We are giving away a KINDLE FIRE HD!!!

READY TO WIN A KINDLE FIRE HD? JOIN EBATES NOW! This is the time to join- most retailers double or close to double their cashback awards for holiday shoppers…so you can use your hard earned money smarter, and have a little more cash for yourself! 

The Kindle Fire HD 7″ is worth $199! This features , Dolby Audio, Dual-Band Wi-Fi, 1280×800 HD display and more. A great holiday gift for your loved ones and even for yourself. And now you have the chance to win one!

Please wait for Rafflecopter to load

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway ends on December 9, 2012

Wanna Win Something? Giveaway Linky

mavens of money giveaways$300 MasterCard Gift Card

Pinterest Power (2 Copies) and One Hour Pinterest Consultation

$100 Paypal Cash or Amazon Gift Card

The Yummy Gummi Search for Santa Prize Package Ends 11/23

Friends Giveaway: 2 Oversized Cappuccino Mugs and Picture Frame Ends 11/25

Green Giant Seasoned Steamers Ends 11/25

LEGO Friends Advent Calendar Ends 11/25

TOMS Giveaway – ends 11/24

Ebates $100 Gift Cards Giveaway – ends 11/30

Melissa & Doug Terrific Twenty Holiday Gift Giveaway (Winner’s Choice!) – Ends 11/25

$100 Target Gift eCard From Ebates Giveaway – Ends 11/30

An iPad Mini Christmas Giveaway – Ends 12/10

LEGO Friends Advent Calendar – Ends 11/25

Ultimate LeapFrog Holiday Prize Pack – Ends 12/3

Apple iPod Touch 16GB 4th Gen – Ends 12/17

Welcome to LazyTown DVD – Ends 11/24

HP Pavilion dv6t-7000 Notebook PC – Ends 11/24

Step2 Deluxe Art Master Desk – Ends 12/1

Apple iPod Touch 32GB – Ends 11/21

Countdown to the Holidays—Win Coach, Xbox, Kindle! – Ends 11/24

In the Kitchen with David Cookbook 5 winners

LEGO Kingdoms Advent Calendar

LEGO Friends Advent Calendar

$50 The Bowtique Gift Card– Gorgeous handmade hair accessories! US/CAN

LeapFrog Ultimate Prize Pack 

American Girl Magazine Subscription

Your Santa Story DVD 

HP Pavilion Laptop

$399 Mohawk Rug

$100 Hello Kitty Karaoke Machine

iPieces iPad Game Winners Choice

TOMS Shoes 2 winners

iPad Mini Giveaway

ipad mini giveaway


Welcome to the iPad Mini Giveaway.  I love my iPad so much that I decided to join up with some other bloggers to give one of YOU one of the new iPad Minis!

Good luck to each of you and don’t forget to check out my other giveaways by clicking on the giveaway button in the menu bar or by the list in the sidebar!

Hosted by:

Swank Savings & Dixieland Mom Product Reviews

Co-Hosted by: Mommy Needs Her Coffee, Virtual Musings, Stay a Stay at Home Mom, Still blonde after all these YEARS, Mommy Bear Media, Monica’s Rants, Raves & Reviews, This Mama Loves Her Bargains, BlogShopWin, Reel Mama, Emperola.com, Shopaholic Mommy, Freebie Spot, AtlasTravelWeb Travel Blog, RewardIt Sweepstakes, and Penny Auctions Canada

The prize: An iPad Mini or Cash Equivalent

This giveaway is open world-wide from November 21 at 12:01 a.m. EST through December 16 at 12:01 a.m. EST. You must be 18 years old or older to enter. Please enter the Rafflecopter below to start the giveaway. All entries will be verified. Winner will be selected by Random.Org. Winner will be emailed and has 48 hours to respond or another winner will be chosen.

Allow some time for the Rafflecopter to load. If it doesn’t load and you only see a link, click to open the link in a separate tab. You can still enter that way. Thanks!
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This blog is not responsible for prize shipment.

Slow down and savor the holidays with Marie Callender’s (Visa Gift Card Giveaway 2 winners) #MarieCallenders

Here it is- Thanksgiving week! I can’t even believe we’re this far into 2012.  Time flies, I guess, when life gets busy.  Does it feel like there’s a countdown to Thanksgiving and from that day until January 2nd, things are go, go GO nonstop?  It’s exhausting. It’s draining.  It’s fun and wonderful, too, of course, but it’s a lot.  There’s so much going on and so much FUN to be had but there’s also everyday life to live and family to spend time with.  Marie Callender’s offers a variety of pies that help us save time in the kitchen and spend more time with our family during this hectic time of year.


As busy and exciting as this time of year is, I think it’s really important that we do take some time to slow down.  To savor the moments.  If we spend all of our time hurrying up to rush off to the next experience and “magical memory” when do we actually get to live in the moment, in the here and now?  This is the time of year we should be treasuring the moments, and creating memories of doing together.  Not just rushing together. Parties are fun, and I love them too, but so is an afternoon of snowball fights and hot chocolate with marshmallows.  Not having to prepare pies/cakes/desserts for a party means you have all of that time left to do something else with the family- and you (by you I mean WE) should be doing that. Read stories together.  Take a walk.  Do a craft.  Live in the moment. Savor the moment.

marie callenders dutch-apple-pie

I’ve decided that instead of spending hours on pie making this Thanksgiving, I’m going to enjoy my afternoon the day before the holiday playing games with my kids.  Marie Callender’s is going to do my baking for me this year.  I’m trying to take my OWN advice and slow down, live in the moment, and savor it.  The Dutch Apple Pie is going to be full of apple-y goodness and I’m going to sit back and take a moment to be thankful that I spent my afternoon playing with the kids instead of rushing to get everything done.

Marie Callender’s® Dutch Apple masterpiece begins with 100% Fuji apples, pure cane sugar, and a dash of cinnamon, all in our rich and flaky pastry pie shell. Sprinkle our delicious crumb topping on at just the right time and let it bake to a crisp, golden perfection. Then, relax and enjoy.

Marie Callenders Dutch Apple Pie

Before you head out to the grocery store, be sure to print this $1.00 off 1  Marie Callender’s coupon !


“I’m giving away two $25 VISA gift cards as stipend for participating in a quick focus group with Marie Callender’s! Attend the virtual focus group for 45 minutes on December 18 at 1 p.m. ET to collect the gift card. The Motherhood will share access information with you – all you have to do is show up online and share a few thoughts on blog product reviews and the Marie Callender’s brand.”
Want to be one of the 2 who receives the stipend?  Simple leave a comment below telling me how you plan to slow down and savor the season with your family! Two names will be selected from the comments to participate in the virtual focus group on December 18th and will receive the $25 gift cards.

 This is a sponsored post with The Motherhood. Opinions are my own.


H&R Block’s Emerald Advance ($300 MasterCard Gift Card Giveaway) #HRBlockLoan

hr block emerald advance

With H&R Block’s Emerald Advance  service, folks may be eligible for up to $1,000 without having to jump through lots of hoops.  People can apply starting November 19th and receive their cash advance in time for the holidays. Whether they use Emerald Advance to cover holiday gifts or travel expenses to spend time with family over the holidays, people can feel good about relying on a financial expert they can trust all year – so they can do more celebrating and less worrying!

More details on H&R Block Emerald Advance:

  • Starting November 19th, apply to get up to $1000 cash in time for the holidays
  • All you need to apply is a valid photo ID and your most recent pay stub (no W2 form required!)
  • You don’t already need to be an H&R Block client to apply

H&R block mastercard giveaway
One lucky reader will win a $300 MasterCard Gift Card from H&R Block! To enter, simply use the Rafflecopter form below.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

H&R Block has provided the $300 gift card for the winner of this giveaway. The prize was provided and may be shipped to the winner by H&R Block, but H&R Block is not a sponsor, administrator, or involved in any other way with this giveaway. All opinions expressed in the post are 100% my own and honest opinion and not those of H&R Block. Entrants must be 18 or older and located in the US only. Winner to be chosen at random. I did not receive compensation for sharing this information or running this promotion.


Ultimate Macaroni & Cheese Recipe from In the Kitchen with David

in the kitchen with david cookbook

I LOVE comfort food.  I mean, what’s not to love?  Food that comforts the soul.  Clearly I love it, or I’d not be so…well, round.  One of my favorite comfort foods is macaroni and cheese.  It’s also one of my favorite things to cook. I make a mean mac’n’cheese, if I do say so myself, and yes, yes I am saying it.  But earlier I tried the Ultimate Macaroni and Cheese recipe from “In the Kitchen with David,” David Venable‘s new cookbook that’s ALL about the comfort foods.

I had to modify the macaroni and cheese recipe just a tiny bit- we had a different kind of pasta and forgot to thaw bacon (seriously? who forgets BACON details? only me!) but we had a ham dinner the previous night and I decided that some ham would be just as delicious on the side.

ultimate macaroni and cheese recipe

But oh, my goodness. I made mine in my cast iron pan (always trying to get that iron in!) and dinner was divine.

macaroni and cheese

All three kids had three helpings.  I had two.  Even my husband who is not a fan of pasta dishes in general, enjoyed this.  I think it may be the mustard but I don’t care. I love the Ultimate Macaroni & Cheese.

COMFORT FOODS THAT TAKE YOU HOMEIN THE KITCHEN WITH DAVIDDavid Venable will be the first to tell you: He loves his food. And, as the beloved QVC® program host of In the Kitchen with David®, he’s put that passion on mouthwatering display, welcoming some of the greatest names in the food world. But Venable’s own culinary skills—honed in the Carolina kitchens of his mother and grandmothers—are nothing short of remarkable and tantalizing.

Now, in his anticipated debut cookbook, Venable shares 150 delicious recipes of hearty, easy-to-make, comforting dishes. In the Kitchen with David covers everything from appetizers and breads to soups and salads to main courses and sides, as well as his lifelong love of bacon (The Divine Swine!). You’ll get ideas for quick Monday-to-Friday dinners, let-it-cook-all-weekend suppers, savory breakfasts and brunches, cocktail party fun, game-day eats, and family reunion feasts. And of course, no Southern-influenced cookbook is complete without a little something sweet.

Here are just a few of his delicious recipes:
• Party Starters: Cheeseburger Dumplings with steak sauce (p. 21)
• Big Bowls of Happiness: Creamy Tomato Soup with Grilled Cheese croutons (p. 69)
• Dinner in One Dish: David’s Ultimate Mac and Cheese (p.143)
• Main Events: Pork Pot Roast with veggies (p. 134)
• Sweet, Sweet Gratification: Pineapple Upside-down cake (p.221) and Three-Layer Chocolate Cake (p. 227)

BIO: DAVID VENABLE joined QVC as a program host in 1993 and has since helped establish and build the multimedia retailer’s gourmet food business. His hit show, In the Kitchen with David®, offers a unique interactive viewership experience and features the latest in gourmet foods, cookware, kitchen gadgets, and cookbooks. While not a chef, Venable, well-known as “QVC’s Resident Foodie,” loves to cook, and his passion revolves around all things food. Prior to joining QVC, Venable was an anchor/reporter for WOAY-TV in Oak Hill, W. Va., and CBS-affiliate WTAJ-TV in Altoona, Pa. He earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and lives in Pennsylvania.

holiday gift guide

FIVE winners will each receive a copy of David Venable’s In the Kitchen with David!

To enter, tell me YOUR favorite comfort food in a comment below.

Want extra entries? (Leave a comment for each entry method you do and either leave your username or the URL of your “share”)




*Follow Me on Pinterest

*Share this giveaway on any social networking site- can be done 1x/day but leave the url of each share in it’s own comment!

This giveaway will end on December 7, 2012 at 11:59PM EST. Winners have 48 hours to respond. US only.  One entry per household.


Lego Friends Advent Calendar Giveaway #HGG

The Lego Friends Advent Calendar is going to be my oldest’s advent calendar this year.  It’s hard to find but oh so fun and a refreshing change from chocolates for her!  This advent calendar is very hard to find unless you happen to live near a LEGO Store. I appears that LEGO online doesn’t even sell this product! You can purchase this advent calendar on Amazon for $42.75 + $15.99 shipping. Or you can enter to win through this giveaway!

lego friends advent calendar giveaway

Sponsoring This Giveaway

Coupons Are Great, Freebie Spot, and This Mama Loves Her Bargains are working together to bring you this awesome giveaway! These three blogs cover everything from freebies to crafts.
You can also enter to win a Lego Kingdoms Advent Calendar!

Fine Print

One lucky reader will win one Lego Friends Advent Calendar (3316). Open to U.S. residents only. Must be 18+ to enter. Only 1 person per household may enter. This prize is not guaranteed to be delivered by December 1st, but we will do our best. One winner will be randomly selected and will have 24 hours to claim their prize or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway ends at 11:59 pm on November 25, 2012.

Enter to Win!

For your chance to win, just use the Rafflecopter entry form below. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: This giveaway is not affiliated with LEGO in any way. All opinions expressed are completely honest.

The Bowtique Custom Hair Accessories Discount Code #HGG

I’ve known Jill of The Bowtique for many years now.  In fact, we’ve grown hair right along with her business growing.  That’s right- my girls were both baldies and we used Jill’s clippies since the moment there was a visible strand of hair on my oldest’s head.  As they grew more hair, we got to check out more of Jill’s gorgeous creations, and enjoy more and more of her creativity and all around awesome hair pieces.  Pretties for your princess, indeed.  (I maybe have worn some of these clips myself over the years).

easter bow from the bowtique

My oldest daughter at 9 months wearing a bow from Bowtique.

There’s clips for baldies and ribbon ponytail holders.  There’s big and small and every size in between for clips, ponys…Jill can make you a custom design or find that perfect ribbon to make a bow that matches a special outfit “just right” and she’ll do it with a smile, all while packaging your purchase in sweet colored tissue paper sealed with a sticker.  Every purchase from The Bowtique comes wrapped up like a present.

bowtique ornaments

There’s more than hair accessories for girls at The Bowtique- felt and wool holiday ornaments are a wonderful, personal gift and these are cute and affordable.  Great for a gift themselves, or an adorable tie on on top of the package! Reminds me, I need to order some for my house!  There’s also some cute new headbands for everyone’s favorite dolls – the headbands fit 15 and 18 inch dolls (I’ve tested on both).

I will be totally honest with you and tell you that we have given gifts from The Bowtique to many friends and family over the years.  These make a GREAT gift when you are invited to a party and the parent says “my child doesn’t need any more toys!” and you are left trying to figure something out.  A bow holder and a simple clip are a reasonable price and are sure to be used and enjoyed for a very long time.

Want to see some of the holiday cuteness?

candy cane headband the bowtique


 snowflake bloom felt clip the bowtique

For the little girl (or lady) who wants a little sparkle but not so much fancy in their hair, the elastic hair ties are fantabulous- and are available in glitter as well.  My daughter is so excited to wear the dark blue ones with her holiday outfit for Christmas Eve!

glitter elastic hair ties

These hair ties, I will warn you, are addictive.  I won’t ever go back to “regular” hair elastics again.  The girls and I fight over them.  I will let them have the glittery ones.  The rest are for me!

Want to order right now?  Save 15% using code NOV15 at checkout!  

One lucky reader from US or Canada will win a $50 Gift Certificate to The Bowtique! 

To enter, simply visit The Bowtique and tell me what your TWO favorite items are.

Want extra entries? (Leave a comment for each entry method you do and either leave your username or the URL of your “share”)



*Follow Me on Pinterest

*Pin one of the images from this post to Pinterest!

*Share this giveaway on any social networking site- can be done 1x/day but leave the url of each share in it’s own comment!
This giveaway will end on December 3, 2012.  Open to US and Canada.  One entry per household.  Winner has 24 hours to respond to confirm interest- Jill needs to have time to get your order set to go before the holidays!