Dec 1, 2012

The First Winner of the 25 Days of Giveaways and Christmas Tree Decorating Tips!


It's finally December 1! I feel like I'm pretty much waiting for this day all year, starting December 26 :)

And it's here! 

You know what else that means is here?

The first winner of the 25 Days of Giveaways! Just to refresh your memory, this lucky winner gets Kreations by Keara Christmas Tree Cake Pops...

Christmas Tree Cake Pops

Check here to see if you're the winner!

But guess what the best part of the 25 Days of Giveaways is? Just because you didn't win this one doesn't mean you didn't win. You could be tomorrow's winner! And if you scroll all the way down on this post (or read it all the way through :P ) you'll have another great giveaway to enter!

Oh, plus you still have all of the other current giveaways in the series to enter!


Now, just for fun, here are some great Christmas tree decorating tips that I've found.

Choose a color scheme. While just throwing everything you've got up on the tree can be fun (and cute), choosing two or three colors - like red and white, blue and silver, etc. - makes for a more sophisticated Christmas tree.

Hang ornaments at different depths. Instead of hanging all of your ornaments at the tip of the branches, hang some ornaments deep on the branches. This creates depth, crucial for a professional looking Christmas tree.


Hang your lights first. This one is fairly basic and, for a lot of people, probably goes without saying. But if you try to hang ornaments first and lights second? Disaster will ensue, guys. Disaster  will ensue.

Don't forget to have fun! Ultimately, the goal isn't just to have the perfect looking Christmas tree. It's not about have a tree that looks like the National Christmas Tree, you should have fun decorating the tree with your family. I think the biggest problem for people who feel holiday-related stress is getting caught up in nitty little details and forgetting to see the magic of the season.

Can you feel it? There's magic in the air.

Okay, okay, I know what y'all want. Here's today's giveaway! It runs through December 15, when the winner will be announced right here, yay!

I've heard a lot about Alter Eco over my (slightly over a year) of blogging. And with good reason! The company is fair trade and all about sustainability.  Their products are good for us, they're good for our neighbors, and they're good for the world!

From whole grains to natural sweeteners to chocolate, they have a nice variety to offer. I got to try some of their treats, as will one of you lucky readers!

Just in time for the holiday baking season, there's their organic mascorado cane sugar. It's light brown and medium grain. It caramelizes nicely for chewy chocolate chip cookies that Santa will really appreciate ;)

The rainbow quinoa is also pretty special - it's nicely multi-colored and cooks up nutty and delicious. I like cooking it as per instructions and topping with a nice sauce or a pat of butter as a tasty side.

And who knew that quinoa is gluten-free? Maybe you guys already did, but I didn't. Anyway, this is a delicious high-protein, vegan, gluten-free side!

The jasmine rice is also quite good, though it wasn't quite as exciting to me (I'm of the opinion that rice is rice).

But the chocolates are my favorite thing that Alter Eco has to offer! Each bar is two servings and they come in either a 60% cacao variety or a 47% cacao variety.

Here are my thoughts:

Dark Mint  - Minty, chocolaty, smooth, creamy, and sweet. YUM! Vegan
Dark Twist -  The orange flavor is nice and prominent agains the super-creamy dark chocolate. It's refreshing and indulgent! Vegan
Dark Almond - They didn't skimp on the almond chunks! The buttery almonds pair delightfully with the creamy dark chocolate. Vegan
Dark Quinoa - I loved the crispy crunch of the quinoa against the creamy chocolate! I also really like how this is a nuttier, higher-protein spin on the traditional crisp rice chocolate bar. Way to be creative (and pull it off)! Vegan
Dark Cacao - This is a very simple, basic dark chocolate bar. It's not too dark, so it's great for most tastes (not just dark chocolate lovers). Vegan
Dark Velvet - This is a really nice milk chocolate bar, with extra chocolate flavor! It's a great way to get that antioxidant punch of dark chocolate even if you don't like the strong flavor of most dark chocolates.
Dark Coconut Toffee - The coconut and toffee pair delightfully in this dark milk chocolate bar. The bar really benefits from the same combo that makes Girl Scout Caramel Delites a winner year after year!

I really enjoyed these Alter Eco Foods and I love how, in the theme of the holidays, they give back to others. Way to go!

Enter below for your chance to win an Alter Eco package of your own, complete with quinoa, rice, sugar, and 4 chocolate bars!

The giveaway ends on December 15. Don't forget to share the giveaway with your friends - it's the holidays!


  1. I would love to try dark coconut toffee one:)

  2. I love quinoa and I love dark chocolate so I'd love to try the Dark Quinoa chocolate bar!
    Thank you so much

  3. Omg, look at all that dark chocolate! I NEED to win this! And dark coconut toffee?? Heaven

  4. thai sticky rice? i've never heard of such a thing! that could be great to make home made sushi with!

    i dont even want to comment on all those flavors of chocolate. that is just the biggest tease ever!!

  5. I want to try everything they have!

  6. I would love to try dark coconut toffee one:)

  7. I love quinoa and would love to taste that Rainbow Quinoa!

  8. I've always wanted to try their black quinoa!

  9. All of these products look amazing! I love the quality of ingredients! Thanks for hosting these awesome giveaways:)

    1. No problem, I'm having a lot of fun with it! I think I'll miss doing all the giveaways once the 25 Days are over...I guess I'll just have to make up more excuses to give away yummy, healthy stuff! :)

  10. Wow- so many delicious looking things, I love dark chocolate & have definitely found a love for quinoa in the recent past. It is pretty tasty.
    emsfsemsfs at gmail dot com

  11. i want to try the Dark Coconut Toffee and the chocolate black out...and really all of the chocolate. :) thanks for the chance!

  12. mmmm the package sounds amazing! Who doesnt love candy bars?

  13. The choices! I'd definitely pick a chocolate, but I have no idea which one. :)

  14. Dark chocolate toffee looks so good!

  15. I have also heard so many great things about Alter Eco and am dying to try them! All the Dark Chocolate bars sound amazing!

  16. The coconut toffee bar is calling my name but I also would love to try the purple sticky rice

  17. Everything sounds good...I would love to try the rice!

  18. definitely a toffee bar. not sure which one.

  19. the thai sticky rice is delicious looking.

  20. I would love all of the dark chocolate

  21. fair trade chocolate bars! I want to try those!!

  22. Thanks for the giveaway, I like good chocolate

  23. Any of the dark chocolate bars! YUM!!!

  24. Alter Eco sources 100% of its products from small-scale, farmer-owned cooperatives. Empowered farmers working for themselves invest their money directly into improving food production and living standards.I appreciate they help them.

  25. I want to try the red quinoa. I love quinoa and it is SO healthy but it is also pretty expensive for a college student!

    1. Story of my life! So much yumminess, but textbooks = money pit

  26. I'd love to try the chocolate gift set

    alterna7 at hotmail dot com

  27. I would love to try the ROYAL RED QUINOA

  28. Dark chocolate Coconut Toffee Yum! Thank you for the giveaway

  29. Dark mint sounds yum!

  30. waiting for rafflecopter I am guessing but nothing


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