Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Olive Garden Trip to Italy Sweepstakes (and a giveaway)

I love to cook and bake. If time and money were no factor, I would love to go to Culinary School. I'm not sure when I first started to love baking and cooking, but it is something that I honestly enjoy. Maybe it is a little bit of Grandma shining through. I can remember nights spent at her house and I would wake to the sound of Grandma humming in the kitchen. She was a great cook and baker - everything from Chicken Noodle Soup, to Goulash, to Seedless German Rye, to Apple Strudel, to Strawberry Rhubarb cake - she made it all.

Home Ec in Junior High School was my first real opportunity to spend time in the kitchen. Then, as I got older, I would help Mom out by getting dinner started. I can still remember the first time she asked me to help her get started by browning ground meat for dinner and she would finish the meal when she got home. I put it in the pan and it started to brown, a few minutes later, I decided I was done. When she came home, she explained to me that the meat should all be brown, not pink as my browned ground meat was.

In college, when I was working as a co-op and living on my own in unfamiliar cities, I took quite a few cooking/baking courses offered at local school and grocers. It was not only fun to learn new things, it was a great way to entertain myself and not just sit around my apartment.

I still try to take classes here or there that are offered locally. Right now, Olive Garden has a sweepstakes going on with a grand prize that I would love to win! They are giving away a Trip to Italy and interactive classes from the Culinary Institute of Tuscany's Master Italian Chef, Paola Lafata. First, let me say that an eight-day trip to Italy with my husband would be a wonderful getaway - like a second honeymoon. But, add cooking classes to that and it becomes even better!

    Now through May 9th, 2011, Olive Garden is offering Italian food lovers the experience of a lifetime: an eight-day immersion into Italian cuisine and culture and an insider’s look at the Olive Garden’s Culinary Institute of Tuscany.

    The sweepstakes will reward four grand-prize winners with an eight-day guided trip for two, including visits to some of Italy’s most popular cities and interactive classes from the Culinary Institute of Tuscany’s Master Italian Chef, Paolo Lafata. Also, 600 first prize winners will receive a $20 Olive Garden gift card to be used towards a genuine Italian dining experience at their local Olive Garden. Your readers can enter at www.olivegardentriptoitaly.com.


Giveaway
Thanks to Olive Garden, I have the opportunity to giveaway a $25 Olive Garden Gift Card to one A Busy Mom of Two reader.

To enter: Leave a comment sharing what your favorite item is at Olive Garden?

Additional Entries (leave a comment for each additional entry)
  • Follow A Busy Mom of Two on Twitter and tweet about this giveaway. This can be once daily, please be sure to leave a link to the tweet in your comment.

  • Post about this giveaway on your blog and leave a comment with a link to your post

  • Sign up to receive daily updates. Leave a comment letting me know you subscribe (or that you already do)

  • Add my button to your sidebar or my blog to blog roll. Leave a link letting me know where you added it.


  • Giveaway will remain open until April 14th at 6pm and is open to US residents. Winner will be selected using Random.org random number generator. The winner will be contacted by e-mail (Please make sure that your email address is either in your comment or clearly visible on your profile or blog) and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner may be selected.

    As a side note, I think that Olive Garden must have a very effective slogan and ad campaign, because each time I write Olive Garden or read it, my brain finishes it with: "when you're here, you're family." Of course, my husband thinks I'm an advertisers dream, as I sing along to not only the music but also to all of the ads on the radio. The funny thing is that half the time, I don't realize that I am doing it. And, there are still songs from ads floating around in my head from my childhood - places that were local to where I grew up and maybe even some that aren't in business anymore.

    No compensation was received for this post. Olive Garden provided me with a $25 gift card for myself and one to use as a giveaway.

    164 comments:

    Sweet and Savory by Sarah said...

    Soup, Salad and Breadsticks for lunch!

    Sweet and Savory by Sarah said...

    I follow!

    Mami2jcn said...

    I love their spaghetti & meatballs with breadsticks & salad.

    mami2jcn at gmail dot com

    Mami2jcn said...

    I subscribe to your emails.

    mami2jcn at gmail dot com

    Mami2jcn said...

    I follow you on Twitter (@mami2jcn) and tweeted:

    http://twitter.com/mami2jcn/status/53150291029278721

    mami2jcn at gmail dot com

    NeedANap2 said...

    Breadsticks! (Peace and quiet, usually if I go it's without children.)

    NeedANap2 said...

    You're on my google reader.

    Shooting Stars Mag said...

    i love their spaghetti and meatballs, salad, and breadsticks. it's simple but oh so good.

    lauren51990 at aol dot com

    KAPUMAKA said...

    I love the spagetti and meatballs

    KAPUMAKA said...

    I follow you on twitter

    Kapumaka is twitter name

    Thabal said...

    I love their 'Chicken fettucini alfredo'. Thanks for the giveaway.

    thabal628 (at) gmail (dot) com

    Thabal said...

    RSS Subscriber to your blog.

    thabal628 (at) gmail (dot) com

    Amy W. said...

    Fettuccine Alfredo is my favorite. cwitherstine at zoominternet dot net

    Amy W. said...

    email subscriber cwitherstine at zoominternet dot net

    JC said...

    I love their breadsticks and seafood pasta

    JC said...

    tweet.http://twitter.com/tcarolinep/status/53190158819934208

    JC said...

    blogged.http://tcarolinep.blogspot.com/2011/03/giveaway-busy-mom-of-two.html

    JC said...

    I'm a subscriber

    Thabal said...

    Follow you on Twitter: (at)thabal628 & tweeted: http://twitter.com/#!/Thabal628/status/53191179801604096

    thabal628 (at) gmail (dot) com

    JC said...

    button.http://tcarolinep.blogspot.com

    Shannon said...

    It has been a while since I have been there & this makes me want to go! I love the salad & lasagna!! Please pick me. I want Olive Garden now!!

    soncrazed@aoldotcom

    Shannon said...

    I am a subscriber!

    soncrazed@aoldotcom

    debbielynne said...

    I love their salad!

    deborahcraft at yahoo dot com

    debbielynne said...

    You are on my blogroll

    http://debbielynne.wordpress.com

    deborahcraft at yahoo dot com

    Tamara B. said...

    I love their Soup, Salad and Breadsticks with a side of their Alfredo sauce to dip the breadsticks in.
    tamben7996(at)aol(dot)com

    Tamara B. said...

    Email subscriber.
    tamben7996(at)aol(dot)com

    Theresa said...

    Who doesn't love soup, salad and breadsticks!

    Theresa said...

    email subscriber

    purplelover04 said...

    i love the breadsticks & salad so good

    purple_lover_04 at msn dot com

    purplelover04 said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/purplelover04/status/53329382068068352

    Steph S said...

    I like the Pasta e Fagioli soup. Thanks for the giveaway!

    ms0812(at)zoominternet(dot)net

    Steph S said...

    E-mail subscriber

    ms0812(at)zoominternet(dot)net

    Steph S said...

    I have your button:

    http://www.onedayonedollaratatime.blogspot.com

    ms0812(at)zoominternet(dot)net

    Patrick said...

    Spaghetti with meat sauce and meat balls!

    AubreyLaine said...

    I love the soup, salad & breadsticks!
    aubreyfick@yahoo.com

    Shelley said...

    I love the portabella ravioli's. Yumm! mrspoofa(at)aol.com

    Shelley said...

    I follow you on twitter @mrspoofa.
    mrspoofa(at)aol.com

    Shelley said...

    tweeted http://twitter.com/#!/Mrspoofa/status/53602741548883968
    mrspoofa(at)aol.com

    Kathy Rambousek said...

    Is it boring to say that my favrite item is their soup, salad, and breadsticks lunch?

    LKARambo at comcast dot net

    Kathy Rambousek said...

    email subscribe

    LKARambo at comcast dot net

    Kathy Rambousek said...

    tweet
    http://twitter.com/#!/LKARambo/status/53656386789314560

    LKARambo at comcast dot net

    evrywoman said...

    Hello-

    My favorite is the Zuppa Tuscona Soup and the bread sticks. You dip your way to deliciousness!

    Thank you,
    evrywoman at yahoo dot com

    evrywoman said...

    SUbscriber..evrywoman at yahoo dot com

    purplelover04 said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/purplelover04/status/53652343413153792

    Jackie said...

    I love the Chicken Marsala...and the breadsticks! Thanks!
    jackievillano at gmail dot com

    Jackie said...

    I subscribe via email
    jackievillano at gmail dot com

    Kim said...

    I love their lasagna!!

    kspsaves at hotmail dot com

    Kim said...

    I'm an email subscriber

    kspsaves at hotmail dot com

    Kathy Rambousek said...

    tweet
    http://twitter.com/#!/LKARambo/status/53901047797792769

    LKARambo at comcast dot net

    Lori Sifuentes said...

    I love their chicken scampi.

    Thanks
    surveys4lori@rocketmail.com

    Lori Sifuentes said...

    Email subscriber

    Thanks
    surveys4lori@rocketmail.com

    purplelover04 said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/purplelover04/status/54008906380349440

    Shawna said...

    My favorite is the breadsticks. I really love to clean up their salad dressing with them. SO YUMMY!

    Thanks for the giveaway!

    shawna at couponladyonline dot com

    Shawna said...

    I posted your button here on my blogroll:
    http://couponladyonline.com/resources/blogroll

    shawna at couponladyonline dot com

    Robin said...

    I am in love with their Zuppa Tuscona Soup and Endless salad bowl!

    purplelover04 said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/purplelover04/status/54397491394789376

    allysmama said...

    My favorite thing at Olive Garden is the salad....YUMMMMMMMMMMM
    bleatham*at*gmail.com

    allysmama said...

    following on twitter and tweeted
    http://twitter.com/#!/sleatham1/status/54415835153973248
    bleatham*at*gmail.com

    allysmama said...

    email subscriber
    bleatham*at*gmail.com

    allysmama said...

    your button is on my sidebar
    http://sweepnsave.blogspot.com
    bleatham*at*gmail.com

    Dolphin Girl said...

    I love their chicken alfredo pizza!

    eclairre said...

    I love the spaghetti and meatballs.

    deallieb said...

    I like the cheese ravioli and breadsticks

    deallieb said...

    I follow you on Twitter and tweeted about this giveaway

    deallieb said...

    I am signed up to receive your daily email updates

    Leona Martin said...

    I am a huge fan of the Chicken Alfredo Pizza, but honestly I love everything Olive Garden makes!

    Not sure if my e-mail address shows up so here it is: lissykeeper@yahoo.com

    Tara V. said...

    My favorite is their salad! Oh it is sooo good!
    designbytara@gmail.com

    purplelover04 said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/purplelover04/status/54722867669110784

    allysmama said...

    tweet
    http://twitter.com/#!/sleatham1/status/54755460066181120
    bleatham*at*gmail.com

    Tabathia said...

    the chicken scampi
    tbarrettno1 at gmail dot com

    Tabathia said...

    email subscriber
    tbarrettno1 at gmail dot com

    Tabathia said...

    twitter follower & tweeted
    http://twitter.com/#!/ChelleB36/status/54757358387204096
    tbarrettno1 at gmail dot com

    Charlotte said...

    Love the lasagna!
    britchick56@msn.com

    Charlotte said...

    I am an email subscriber.
    britchick56@msn.com

    Shelley said...

    tweeted http://twitter.com/#!/Mrspoofa/status/54962134328676353
    mrspoofa(at)aol.com

    Haydensmommy05 said...

    I love their lasagna!!
    haydensmommy05@hotmail.com

    Haydensmommy05 said...

    I subscribe b yemail!
    haydensmommy05@hotmail.com

    allysmama said...

    4/4 tweet
    http://twitter.com/#!/sleatham1/status/55106125888106498
    bleatham*at*gmail.com

    purplelover04 said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/purplelover04/status/55090292990291969

    ~dab said...

    I like their endless soup and salad for lunch :) also they have yummy meatballs!

    ~dab said...

    http://twitter.com/simplydab/status/55116153437171712

    Mari said...

    I like their cheese ravioli.

    runningmatey at hotmail dot com

    Mari said...

    Twitter follow And tweet

    http://twitter.com/LuckyDuckyToo/status/55115791821045760

    runningmatey at hotmail dot com

    The NEW Mommiez Blend said...

    I'm not sure I could, but the Tour of Italy is fabulous. The hubbs likes that. I heart the soup and salad.

    Chelle
    newmommiez at gmail dot com

    Tina said...

    I like the Parmesan Crusted Tilapia
    merleandtina@yahoo.com

    Tina said...

    subscribe via email
    merleandtina@yahoo.com

    Tina said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/HappyTina0115/status/55245697812938753
    merleandtina@yahoo.com

    traciet said...

    My fav is chicken marsala! tracietrump@yahoo.com

    traciet said...

    Email SUBSCRIBER! tracietrump@yahoo.com

    Anonymous said...

    Don't even want to know the calorie count but Tour of Italy and Black Tie Mousse Cake!
    Kristen
    women@northshorefellowship.org

    susan (frugaLouis) said...

    Fettucini (sp?) alfredo with chicken..plus salad and breadsticks!

    susanheindel at hotmail dot com

    Jay said...

    Hands down top 3 at Olive Garden is salad, breadsticks, and the tiramisu!!!!!
    rbjj32825[at]lycos[dot]com

    Marilyn said...

    I like the parmesan crusted tilapia.

    tosra55 at yahoo dot com

    Mari said...

    http://twitter.com/LuckyDuckyToo/status/55463848207073280


    runningmatey at hotmail dot com

    allysmama said...

    4/5 tweet
    http://twitter.com/#!/sleatham1/status/55469167888973824
    bleatham*at*gmail.com

    Shelley said...

    tweeted http://twitter.com/#!/Mrspoofa/status/55472067881086977
    mrspoofa(at)aol.com

    purplelover04 said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/purplelover04/status/55468856885526528

    ~dab said...

    4-5 http://twitter.com/simplydab/status/55479196515971072

    Tina said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/HappyTina0115/status/55646270504714240
    merleandtina@yahoo.com

    Latoshia said...

    The salad is so good! hpb157@yahoo.com

    Miss Sarah said...

    Actually, I've never eaten at Olive Garden, but the Chicken Fettucini Alfredo sounds yummy!

    Thanks for the giveaway!
    misterjimmy at sbcglobal dot net

    Mari said...

    http://twitter.com/LuckyDuckyToo/status/55829937202012160

    runningmatey at hotmail dot com

    ~dab said...

    4-6 http://twitter.com/simplydab/status/55840259518365697

    Tina said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/HappyTina0115/status/56011812029730816
    merleandtina@Yahoo.com

    Lindsey said...

    I love the soup (zuppa tuscana), salad, and breadsticks

    mframe said...

    I love their breadsticks. I also love the salad.
    mframe00@gmail.com

    mframe said...

    email subscriber
    mframe00@gmail.com

    Mari said...

    http://twitter.com/LuckyDuckyToo/status/56191589688684544

    runningmatey at hotmail dot com

    allysmama said...

    4/7 tweet
    http://twitter.com/#!/sleatham1/status/56193684403798016
    bleatham*at*gmail.com

    ~dab said...

    4-7 http://twitter.com/simplydab/status/56202451153461249

    purplelover04 said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/purplelover04/status/56176562105630720

    Tina said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/HappyTina0115/status/56349936769437696
    merleandtina@Yahoo.com

    Anonymous said...

    salad and breadsticks!!! :-)

    ~eunice b
    tigergal01 @gmail .com

    Anonymous said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/tigergal01/status/56442200409640960

    follow and tweeted

    ~eunice b
    tigergal01 @gmail .com

    Mari said...

    http://twitter.com/LuckyDuckyToo/status/56557991943614464

    runningmatey at hotmail dot com

    purplelover04 said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/purplelover04/status/56545409572675584

    allysmama said...

    4/8 tweet
    http://twitter.com/#!/sleatham1/status/56568965404696576
    bleatham*at*gmail.com

    ~dab said...

    4-8 http://twitter.com/simplydab/status/56566362885210113

    Anonymous said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/tigergal01/status/56709832480276480

    4/9 tweet

    ~eunice b
    tigergal01 @gmail .com

    Tina said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/HappyTina0115/status/56727915953532928
    merleandtina@yahoo.com

    Thabal said...

    Daily tweet: http://twitter.com/#!/Thabal628/status/56797813140500480

    thabal628 (at) gmail (dot) com

    Mari said...

    http://twitter.com/LuckyDuckyToo/status/56894827790483456

    runningmatey at hotmail dot com

    purplelover04 said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/purplelover04/status/56908036400349184

    ~dab said...

    http://twitter.com/simplydab/status/56927752498065408

    Tina said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/HappyTina0115/status/57076684498812928
    merleandtina@yahoo.com

    jbafaith said...

    How can I pick one??!! I used to love the Garlic Seafood Pasta - then they quit carrying it, then I loved the portabella/parmasan pasta - and no more! I do love the breadsticks - especially the browner ones and extra garlic powder!

    jbafaith2001 at yahoo dot com

    jbafaith said...

    follow you on twitter @jbafaith & tweeted

    http://twitter.com/jbafaith/status/57147603334336512

    jbafaith2001 at yahoo dot com

    jbafaith said...

    I subscribe!

    jbafaith2001 at yahoo dot com

    ~dab said...

    http://twitter.com/simplydab/status/57145923234562049

    Shelley said...

    tweeted http://twitter.com/#!/Mrspoofa/status/57149993420722176
    mrspoofa(at)aol.com

    Tina said...

    I just love their Baked Ziti and of course the Salad and breadsticks. I fill up on so much salad that I have to take my Ziti home.
    tinap
    tinajanet1@verizon.net

    purplelover04 said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/purplelover04/status/57251540179755008

    Mari said...

    http://twitter.com/LuckyDuckyToo/status/57265642918772736

    runningmatey at hotmail dot com

    allysmama said...

    4/10 tweet
    http://twitter.com/#!/sleatham1/status/57279103371456512
    bleatham*at*gmail.com

    Tina said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/HappyTina0115/status/57427985548058624
    merleandtina@yahoo.com

    Anonymous said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/tigergal01/status/57439713577009152

    tweet

    ~eunice b
    tigergal01 @gmail .com

    Heather said...

    I like their plain fettichini alfredo. So tasty! But the best thing about Olive Garden is the salad. That is why I always go back! Thanks for the opportunity!
    ygm_daisy at yahoo dot com

    Shelley said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/Mrspoofa/status/57569256170205185
    mrspoofa(at)aol.com

    allysmama said...

    4/11 tweet
    http://twitter.com/#!/sleatham1/status/57598614511435777
    bleatham*at*gmail.com

    rae1124 said...

    Shrimp and crab tortelli romana...haven't had it but it sounds yummy!
    rae1124(at)aol(dot)com

    rae1124 said...

    Follow on twitter and tweeted...
    http://twitter.com/#!/rae1124/status/57631700892659712
    rae1124(at)aol(dot)com

    rae1124 said...

    Email subscriber...
    rae1124(at)aol(dot)com

    purplelover04 said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/purplelover04/status/57619483329699840

    Carole Spring said...

    I like their Lasagna.
    blondie_31971(at)yahoo(dot)com

    ~dab said...

    http://twitter.com/simplydab/status/57649996371206144

    Tina said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/HappyTina0115/status/57822002148409344
    merleandtina@yahoo.com

    Anonymous said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/tigergal01/status/57911360083865601

    tweet

    ~eunice b
    tigergal01 @gmail .com

    allysmama said...

    4/12 tweet
    http://twitter.com/#!/sleatham1/statuses/57976766240792576
    bleatham*at*gmail.com

    rae1124 said...

    Daily tweet...
    http://twitter.com/#!/rae1124/status/57974386229121024
    rae1124(at)aol(dot)com

    Mari said...

    http://twitter.com/LuckyDuckyToo/status/57995451399548928

    runningmatey at hotmail dot com

    ~dab said...
    This comment has been removed by the author.
    ~dab said...

    I think I posted the wrong link before - this is the correct one. http://twitter.com/simplydab/status/58009675156815872

    Tina said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/HappyTina0115/status/58164721928503296
    merleandtina@yahoo.com

    Anonymous said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/tigergal01/status/58263725009928192

    tweet

    ~eunice b
    tigergal01 @gmail .com

    allysmama said...

    4/13 tweet
    http://twitter.com/#!/sleatham1/status/58317625943539712
    bleatham*at*gmail.com

    rae1124 said...

    Daily tweet...
    http://twitter.com/#!/rae1124/status/58350247402946560
    rae1124(at)aol(dot)com

    purplelover04 said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/purplelover04/status/58345995045584896

    Mari said...

    http://twitter.com/LuckyDuckyToo/status/58370219877470208

    runningmatey at hotmail dot com

    ~dab said...

    http://twitter.com/simplydab/status/58371798068232192

    ~dab said...

    http://twitter.com/simplydab/status/58491792106065920

    ~dab said...

    I Signed up to receive daily updates

    ~dab said...

    blogroll'd http://simplydab.blogspot.com/

    Anonymous said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/tigergal01/status/58501610149650432

    tweet

    ~eunice b
    tigergal01 @gmail .com

    purplelover04 said...

    http://twitter.com/#!/purplelover04/status/58700717577342976