post-GRE giveaway!

8 03 2010

i meant to post this a few days ago, but i think i’ve been so caught up in my own social life (after a 2-week period of having NO life) that i completely forgot about it.  anyway, WOO HOO again for me being done with this evil test!  in celebration, i wanted to do a quick giveaway.

there were four words that stumped me on my GRE: lugubrious, toothsome, disembarrass, and desultory.  i don’t want to ever forget the meanings of those words again!  the rules for this contest are simple:  in the comments, make up a sentence (or two) using those words in relation to bento.  be creative — there are no right or wrong sentences, as long as the actual meaning of the word is being used correctly.  only one entry per day, you can’t repeat your previous entries, and i’ll take entries through this sunday night, march 14, at 11:59PM EST.

now onto the prizes!  here’s what the prize package contains:

  • a highly-coveted MS4B!!  i know that hapa bento’s contests are always eagerly-anticipated, not only because they are fun and creative (and because her site is consistently fantastic), but because this box is so great and somewhat hard to find.  well, i finally found one, and i grabbed an extra so that debra wouldn’t have to bear the sole responsibility of distributing these amongst our bento community!  (by the way, yours will come in the packaging; i photographed mine to reduce the glare from the plastic wrapping.)
  • another highly-coveted item, one of the hand-crafted double cutters!  this one is in the shape of a pretty flower with a stem.
  • a package of cute animal mayo cups (the faces and arms fold over the top so the mayo stays put).
  • a package of cute animal soy sauce bottles.
  • a package of cute animal baran.
  • a box of regular green “grass” baran.
  • one of the “paper shapers” punches, in a pretty flower shape.
  • a package of yummy strawberry-flavored panda biscuits!  i used the chocolate variety in a recent panda bento and can attest to their deliciousness.
  • the always-useful and fun multi-pick package, containing rings, bones, umbrella handles, flower stems, and balloon strings.  i received my own set of these from a bento pal once and often daydream about neat ways of using them — they can be anything from christmas ornament “hooks,” to reindeer antlers, to cute tiger cub tails!  so now i’m giving away another set; they really are very handy and versatile.
  • ten colorful “veggie” fork-style food picks, and four colorful “clown” picks (i can’t find the exact same clowns online, but the ones i’m giving away look a lot like these).  these are not in the packaging because they are from my personal stash, but they have never been used, are from a clean and smoke-free home, and will be tucked safely in a fresh zip-loc bag.  if you aren’t comfortable receiving something that’s not professionally packaged, just let me know and i won’t include these — i just thought they were fun.

that’s it — this should be a nice assortment for a beginner bento-er, or it might include some of the things a veteran bento-maker has been searching out for her collection.  good luck to everyone, and i can’t wait to read your GRE vocabulary sentences!

oh, and if you like what you see here but don’t want to enter the contest, check out napa japan — i have really been enjoying their extensive japanese candy selection (as well as their currently-expanding bento accessories selection), and a lot of the items i’m giving away are from my last box from that site.

bento zen vacation contest!

1 02 2010

a few months back, debra over at hapa bento ran a great contest, where participants had to guess where she was going on vacation… it was very cool and very “where in the world is carmen sandiego” (uh oh, i’m dating myself). since i’m leaving for a short getaway this thursday night, i thought it would be fun to do the same thing (thanks for letting me use the idea, debra!)…

so, here are the rules:

  1. the contest starts as of this post, and it ends sunday, february 7th, at 11:59pm EST. since it’s such a short one, you are allowed to enter twice a day.
  2. i’ll be posting clues about where i’m headed on this page and on my twitter account (@bentozen), so keep your eye out for them!
  3. when you think you know my vacation destination, email your guess to, and then leave a comment on this post linking to your latest bento (or in the case of your second daily entry, to a past favorite bento you made, or to a recipe you’d like to share or try for bento)!
  4. when i get back from vacation, i’ll take all the correct guesses and enter them into a random drawing for the prize package. i will announce the winner here on the morning of monday, february 8th.

and here are the prize details i know you’ve been eagerly awaiting! the prize package includes:

  • one square 870ml lock-n-lock bento box with 2 removable 2-compartment inserts (for a total of 4 compartments when both inserts are inside the box). this box seals very tightly, making it great for wetter foods, and even though it’s not particularly kawaii, it’s a sturdy and practical box that will beautifully show off your food!
  • one rectangular, striped blue, 430ml sopra bento box. this one is cute and fairly small, excellent for kids’ meals. (it’s this exact box; sorry for the glare in the photo!)
  • one box of the often-coveted chocolate biscuit mushrooms by meiji!
  • one box of the oh-so-cute kabaya petit pastels i recently discussed!
  • one package of 5 sets of colorful flowered chopsticks — great as a prop for your bento photos.
  • one hello kitty “pill case” — it has 4 little lidded compartments that separate from each other so that you can include just one in a bento. these would make great mayo or mustard cases.
  • one set of small paper food cups, assorted designs — this set includes an all-green design (st. patrick’s day is coming up!), an all-red design (little tomatoes?), and an all-yellow design.
  • one yellow banana putifresh bento tote — it’s a versatile size that will accommodate most bento boxes.
  • assorted packages of jillibean felt shapes — i use these as props too; they add a pop of contrasting color against background paper, and look cute as a faux chopstick rest. (the ones in the photo are my own; yours will still be in the original packaging.)
  • and speaking of background paper, i’m also including more than 50 sheets of colorful background paper, hand-picked by me from the kaleidoscope and citronella sets. many of these are reversible, so you’re getting far more than 50 patterns. i removed these sheets from the larger packs they came in, but they are completely unused, and will come to you protected inside a plastic bag.

good luck everyone… i can’t wait to see your bentos and recipes, and of course your clever guesses!

oh, and i almost forgot — your first hint! since yesterday was a quiet sunday, i took the time to do some of my packing in advance… i’m taking plenty of sweaters, as it’s very cold where i’m going!