Real, raw, & relatable me. Enthusiastic food & lifestyle blogger living in Vancouver, BC!

Category: products Page 1 of 2

Mikei Mushroom Stick Ramen

Living alone with a busy life, you often seek instant noodles as a quick and easy meal time solution. And living as long as I have, I am not shy to admit that I have tried many brands of quick to cook noodles and ramen; so when I new one comes my way, I do not hesitate to give it a try and give it a definitive rank on my list.

This is Mikei’s new mushroom flavoured stick ramen. Each box contains two bundles of stick ramen and four packets of sauces and oil for two servings. I found one serving not enough and two too much.

Trying the packet as is I found the clear broth light. A satisfying soup with the faint earthiness of mushrooms. Easy and simple as is, but better as the base to something more. Like today, when we made our own seafood ramen featuring Mikei’s mushroom stick ramen. It was so good, that I wanted to share this recipe.

We started by boiling some miscellaneous salmon parts in hot water, adding in coarsely chopped white onion, several cloves of garlic, chunks of ginger, and large segments of green onion. We allowed that to simmer before adding in Mikei’s mushroom stick ramen sauce packets.

In our case we wanted more depth of flavour so added in an arsenal of sauces and spreads, that we had at the ready. Like miso paste to thicken the broth, sesame oil for flavour, garlic butter for richness, and shrimp paste for enhance the seafood flavour.

Next came additional ingredients. Here we used shiitake mushrooms craved with “x’s” into their caps, for visual effect. And a medium firm tofu, cut into cubes. And what ramen is complete without a soft boiled egg? In order to get the yolk perfectly centred, in the soon to be boiled white. Cut a small hole at either end of egg, and boil for 6 minutes.

Next, boil the instant stick ramen separately to remove additional starch. Drain water and plate cooked ramen in bowl. To finish, ladle broth and ingredients over noodles and serve steaming warm.

We then rounded out our meal with a heavily salted, baked, and seared mackerel, that complimented our seafood flavours above.

Not only do they taste good, but mushrooms are good for you, so any way I can take it, I do. As taken from Wikipedia, “Mushrooms are rich in the B vitamins: riboflavin, niacin, and pantothenic acid. The combination helps protect heart health. Riboflavin is good for red blood cells. Niacin is good for the digestive system and for maintaining healthy skin.”

Mikei Red Reishi Mushroom Essence

I have always been curious about such products. Pills and cure alls that promise fantastical attributes with just one dose. Therefore, when I got the chance to try one such product, I jumped at the opportunity to debunk it. I went in with disbelief and suspicion, and came out wrong. This stuff works.

The Mikei Red Reishi Mushroom Essence pills come in a blister pack of 10. This is right number for a first timer to be able to really see and reflect on its benefits.

The pill promises you more energy, and a more relaxed and stress-free outlook, with the focus on the task at hand. It isn’t instant relief, you don’t just take one and feel the effects above. It is a slow discovery and incline. On the first day, you notice how relaxed you feel, a mild sensation that you might not be able to identify in the moment, but come day two and three, it is there. Then four and five will have you comparing it to a time before your ever touched the stuff, the difference is notable.

You feel like you are in a constant state of calm during your day to day work routine. It keeps you focused and working with a steady, low flow of consistent energy. There is no up or down, no crash afterwards, not until you stop taking them. And when you are off of work, the relaxing and calm you get from the Mikei Red Reishi Mushroom Essence pill is like reading a book for an escape: peaceful.

The downside: the cost. At $21.99 for a pack of 10 pills, this might not be within most of our budgets, to sustain a daily dose of. But for those who just need the extra oomph now and again, keep a box at the ready and pop a pill as necessary. Plus, I would suspect that daily use would decrease the effects eventually, due to familiarity. Not to mention it is rough coming off of. You feel the difference without it, in your energy especially. In lesser words, I suspect you are microdosing on mushrooms, in a healthy and regulated setting. So having tasted the good stuff and experiencing the good life, it is now uncomfortable without it.

In short, Mikei Red Reishi Mushroom Essence is a standout product, and the price tag justifies this premium product.

Evalina Beauty Launch

I am a big proponent of supporting local business, and even more so when their product or service comes with a great message. And that is definitely what “Evalina” is bringing to the Vancouver beauty and wellness scene.

Based out of Vancouver, BC, Samantha Legge created “Evaline Beauty” with the goal “ To celebrate and uplift women for who they are, as they are”. And tonight we were invited down to the “Vancouver Club” to learn more about her and her new cosmetics line. We mixed and mingle in the lavish space, and became brand fans through a very honest meet and greet with sparkling wine, Rose, and pink canapés.

In Hebrew, “Evalina” means “life”, and “I want this cosmetics company to positively impact women’s lives”, says Legge. Her intention is that her company does good. On top of providing the community with a quality makeup line, her and her team also want to champion women, and anyone who identifies as a woman; to help them feel better about themselves through self-acceptance. “Our goal isn’t to create makeup that transforms you. We want to highlight your natural beauty—not hide it.” (As taken from the press release).

Designed and developed in Vancouver, Canada, “Evalina Beauty” boasts a luxurious line of lip glosses, face creams, and shadows. Each product is paraben-free, cruelty-free, and designed to feel lightweight. Everything is “tested by a team of influencers and makeup artists to ensure it is long-lasting, high-quality and, most importantly, something we love and use every day”. “It’s not about covering up, it’s all about bringing out natural beauty and is designed to let the wearer’s own unique features and colouring shine through”.

Between all her uplifting messages of self acceptance and love for one another, Legge revealed where her strength and determination towards “Evalina” came from. In a raw and emotional account she revealed her own hardships in escaping a destructive marriage. And while she acknowledged her means, support, and ability to remove herself from the situation; she recognized that not everyone can. So to support those mothers and children needing to escaping their current living situation, and needing help to become financially stable to do so. “Evalina Beauty” has dedicated a portion of all their sales to be donated to charities that support women and children in need, to help provide them safe transition housing. Out of the hundreds of makeup companies and brands trying to make a name for themselves, this message of giving to some of the most vulnerable, is what makes “Evalina” different, and ones to watch out for.

As for the review of the actual makeup: For the most part their product is quick and easy to apply. Ideal for someone like myself, who doesn’t like putting on too much makeup, or having it take up too much of my time. Their approachable cosmetics means you don’t need the skills of a makeup artist to use “Evalina Beauty’s products”. The “Dew BB Cream” goes on like any moisturizer that you spread and rub in. Their “Precision Liquid Eyeliner” is smudge-proof and as easy to apply as drawing a line. And their “Shimmer Eyeshadow Sticks” gives you a little sparkle with a smear and a smudge of your fingers.

For a more revealing look at the current line, check out my first beauty vlog, now up on my YouTube channel: MaggiMei. Disclaimer: I have no professional experience in make up application, and don’t put on much in my day to day life. So take this for what its is: an amateur trying to review a terrific make up line, like she would anything else.

For those interested in purchasing, the current “Evalina” collection (with additional lines to launch in the near future), is only available online. (With plans for store front representation in the future). But for now you can make your online purchase with confidence knowing that they believe in and back up their cosmetics with a 100% money-back guarantee. They can do this, having worked with some of the world’s top cosmetics manufacturers in Italy, Germany, and Canada.

“Women have altered themselves forever, in whatever role we’re in,” says Legge. “I want to encourage women to be their true, authentic selves, and feel better about who the are, not change who they are—because they’re already amazing and have an intrinsic beauty.”


Potters Christmas Store

This year I am especially excited for the up coming winter season! Christmas is right around the corner and what better way to kick off the festivities to come, than with my first ever visit to “Potters“. “Potters” is a garden centre and nursery located in Surrey BC. But this time every year, they are better known as Western Canada’s largest Christmas store. With over 28,000 square feet of display space and seasonal merchandise for sale, there is something for everyone. Gifts to give and decorations to buy.

Open now through to Christmas Eve, the store is only around for 9 weeks. Which is plenty of time to get your tree up, and head back if you end up needing something else. So scroll through to know what to expect, but I highly recommend coming down yourself. To be able to fully appreciate the work that went into this transformation.

The following is only but a smigin of what they have in store. So for more Christmas, check out my vlog of two hours spent amongst the aisles, now up on my YouTube channel: MaggiMei.

“Potter’s” curates their collections by shopping the world for all things Christmas. They focus on bringing back items that are both “tasteful and unusual”. Knick knacks and trinkets that they hope you won’t see elsewhere.

With over 60,000 themed ornaments, you are sure the find the perfect one to represent that perfect someone. Gift them an bauble representing their profession, hobby, spirit animal, or even favourite dessert snack.

And with over 30 decorated and themed trees you can see these ornaments spin and sparkle in action. Take inspiration, or simply make it for your own. “The entire store is an Christmas adventure”, and the staff have definitely achieved their goal to wow-ing their customers the minute we walk in the door. Half the fun is roaming the nooks and crannies, exploring the towering aisles, and taking in all the details and workmanship that is put into their displays.

There is a section just dedicated to a literal “white Christmas”. Egg shell coloured snowflakes, pearlescent white angels, and creamy white feathered birds. For a little more colour go for the rose gold and/or pink winter decor items adjacent. Here is where you find ballet dancers, Christmas flamingoes, and pink poodles.

The entire showroom is set a little darker to evoke a feeling of mysticism and magic through Christmas lights and lighted home décor. Animated paintings, twinkling snowflakes, and a variety of novelty string lights glow. “Paw Patrol” and “Snoopy” for the kids, and moose shaped cups with antlers or a leg lamp for the classic Christmas movie fan.

“Potter’s” also carries giftable items like fruit flavoured candy canes, boxes of cookies, and tins of sweets. Grab a couple of their artisan preserves and box of crackers for your next dinner party. Bake a batch of cookies for Santa using one of their chocolatey spreads. Or stir up some fun with one of their novelty packets of hot chocolate powder.

This year they are proud to announce over 200 stocking stuffer options. Find the perfect stocking and then fill it up with toys, accessories, and personalized keepsakes.

Be warned, you will want to carve out a large chunk of time for this trip. To fully take in and enjoy the sheer volume of holiday product that surrounds you. The following are a few additional photos of things that I found worth noting. Like the “Frozen” castle and “Whosville”.


19158 48 Ave, Surrey, BC V3Z 1B2
(604) 576-5011

Gomae, vegan meal prep

If any of you are following my instrsgean stories, you know I am trying to eat healthier. So when given an opportunity to try Gomae meal prep, I jumped at the chance. A week’s worth of lunches packed and ready for consumption, after a spin the microwave.

But first placing your order. “Gomae” supplies “Zero waste meals delivered for your week”, either starting Sunday or Monday, both for the same price of $47.99. Either, with plenty of dishes to choose from, from off their website.

Each order gives you four choices, all delivered in their reusable containers and bags. And to assure their customers on its cleanliness they ask for each container to be washed after its use. They even give you detailed instructions on how to properly clean each box and lid, online. The washed containers will be later exchanged at next week’s delivery. After, the same containers are put through a complete sanitization process before being reused for the next set of meals.

The reusable containers they use do not absorb odours, meaning they keeping the meals within fresher for longer. It is completely BPA Free, dishwasher-safe, freezer-safe, and microwave-safe. For the latter, it is suggested that you heat the food up in it to 212°F.

As for the actual food, your available choices are from some of the most sustainable vegan restaurants, food trucks and food experts, in Vancouver. This collected menu changes every Saturday morning, so there is plenty to keep you interested for subsequent orders. As for delivery, they can simply leave everything at your front door, if you’re not home. The food comes in a cooler bag with an ice pack so it stays fresh for a day.

When it is time to place a subsequent order, you are already signed up for their weekly meal plan, so will need to either select the next set, or opt to skip it. Either option needs to be made before Thursday at 11:59 pm. This isn’t to scare you away with commitment, there are no obligations, and you can delete your plan at any time. But if you don’t “Skip or Select”, the “Gomae” team will choose the next set of meals for you, for your convenience. And when they deliver this, they pick up last week’s bags and containers, and exchange it with the fully prepared meals you have selected.

Based on the options available, I ordered the following as the ones that peaked my interest the most. The thorough description, calorie count, and vivid photos help.

Their “Jamaican curry” was a hearty beans and rice dish that didn’t have you missing meat. Comforting with an interesting mix of portobello mushrooms, carrots, and plantains. All served over brown rice and peas(red beans), with a side of roasted sweet potato and sautéed red cabbage.

Their “Kale Caesar” was made by “The Juice Truck”. A mix of romaine, kale and radicchio served with sriracha chickpeas, smoked maple tempeh, walnut “parmesan”, chipotle coconut bacon, and fresh lemon. It is packaged well with dry toppings and wet dressing separate, for you to dole out as you see fit. This salad was a good variety of textures and flavours, so you don’t get bored eating it. The dressing was the highlight, creamy despite it being nut based.

This was a gluten free lasagna with artichoke, eggplant, vegan mozzarella and cashew based ricotta. Served with a side of sautéed seasonal greens. By far the best of the four items. The artichoke was a great interpretation, it gave the lasagna the meaty feel I would otherwise have missed.

The “Spinach Veggie Wrap” was the easiest to have on the go. Rolled tight for easy dipping with a side of sweet mango chutney. Inside, there was plenty of cabbage, wild rice and Indian spices. I was genuinely surprised by how flavourful it was.

I am a fan of the premise and liked how easy it was to order. Where the disconnect was, was with the delivery. The person who dropped it off was insistent that we transfer all the food into our own containers and return theirs and the bags right away. The only problem, they delivered to my partner’s work place, where there is no kitchen, let alone containers to repackage with. They eventually let us keep the containers saying they will be back to pick it all up the next day. So when I got home, I repackaged them all and cleaned the original containers, readying them for pick up the next day, as promised. However, it is now 2 months later and I am still trying to give them back their containers. Given the experience above, I opted out of another set of meals, so now they don’t have a reason to return, I guess.

So for those who are looking for the commitment of meals delicately weekly, they are a great option. And especially valuable if you are vegan and looking for diversity in your meals.


“Ready” at Tap & Barrel


Technology is all around us, making our lives easier, and our day to day mundane activities quicker. Case in point, there is a new way to pay coming to Vancouver’s restaurant scene. Today I was at “Tap & Barrel” to learn more about the new “Ready Split Check Function”, at this launch party with cocktails and canapés.

“Ready” is focusing on their expansion to Canada and the US with their phone friendly payment method. You view, split, and pay your check right on your phone. Available for the iPhone and Android. You simply open your camera app and focus on the “Ready” QR code and follow the prompts. With android you can also tap your NFC enabled phone to the table top sign to view your check, pay, and go.

Pictured in my photos is the demo version we got to try out, but they are now live!

A pop up appears on your screen inviting you to click and view your check. Your bill appears when you do, it itemizes your purchase. Here, you can tick off what you had, and/or pay only for what you want to. With this, there is a new way to fight for who is going to pay. You no longer have to search for your server or wait for them to deliver the bill, and then go back to get the machine you need to pay for it. This is especially helpful at the busier bar scenes that they are rolling this out at. Also great if small talk with your server as your pay, and decide what to tip them, gives you anxiety.

Not to mention the amount of time is saves both parties. Table turn time was reduced by 23 minutes with “Read”. You simply look for their signs and can complete the transaction using Apple Pay, Google Pay, and all major credit cards. They are rolling out this platform to various restaurants, hotels, and stadiums around town. And strategically placing themselves as a solution for the labour shortage in the hospitality industry.

While we learned and chit chat-ed we enjoyed beer, wines, and cocktails from behind the bar, and sampled small bites from the kitchen.

“The Hatch Left Bank Blanc” was a dry wine that quenched, with notes of citrus and stone fruits.

The “Raspberry crush” was a cocktail mix of disruption vodka, raspberries, soda, and lemonade. A refreshingly tasty, patio sipper.

Everyone helped themselves to the charcuterie board. A collection of hard cheeses, paired with salty cured meats, juicy tomatoes, and briny olives.

The “Green goddess hummus” was a vegetarian option. A perfectly pipped swirl of thick, green hummus made from garbanzo beans; served on toast topped with Micro greens. It was a little gritty and I wanted a more even hummus to toast-base ratio. Easy to eat like this, but probably better as a dip or spread to self regulate.

The shrimp and avocado on a crispy tortilla with pickled ginger was another easy snack. I would have liked the shrimp warm, instead of being served chill. And the guacamole less spicy and punchy, but overall more complimentary to the shrimp.

The beef slider was a classic with cheese, tomato, and lettuce on a sesame seed bun

And I would have liked a full serving of their crispy fried chicken, over a sweet and fluffy golden brown waffle. And when I come back for some, I can pay for it using “Ready”.

To learn more about the app visit their website here.

1 Athletes Way, Vancouver BC, V5Y 0B1

Porto Vino, portable wine bag

Porto Vino: Bring the Party

Those who know me, know it is no surprise that I love to drink. My social media is rife with photos of wine, beer, and spirits. And even more of me with a glass in hand, dreaming of all the glasses to come. So what better way to take my enthusiasm for the drink, and fermented grapes in particular, than to carry my own wine barrel in tow? … so to speak.

In this post I will be drinking more fashionably, literally and figuratively with the Porto-vino wine purse and beverage bag. And this post is the review of my thoughts.

Despite its name, you can actually fill the bag with any drink, spirited or not. Similarly, I happen to own their purse version, but this practical creation is also available as a tote bag, messenger bag, and/or even backpack. So you can bring your wine to work, vacation, and/or travel. Basically anywhere you would bring any of these carrying cases you can also have wine or a beverage over your shoulder. For ease of writing I will refer to my drink of choice for this purse: wine.

How it works is, you first choose your wine. Red, white, pink, or blue; they all work fine (and yes blue wine does exist).

In order to fill the portable keg, you need to remove the waterproof pouch from the side pocket. This pocket is lined with thermal material meant to keep your drinks (in the pouch) cooler and your bag drier.

After your unscrew the tap from the pouch, you then pour your entire bottle of wine into it. This pouch is referred to as the bag’s bladder. Given the referencing of liquid, this term makes sense. The bladder can hold 1.5 litres of wine, which is a bottle and then some.

Next, you push the tap in and turn until you hear two clicks. This ensure that nothing spills out. You then insert the bladder back into the side pouch. It is easiest to do by lining up the plastic tap with the flap on the side of the bag. This flap is where the nozzle sticks out when in use.

If this is your first time using the bag, you will need to remove a piece of plastic. Doing so frees up your ability to push the top button down and the lift the side levers up. (It is actually a lot easier than I am making it sound.)

To see the bag in action and to learn how to use it, check out my latest drinking Vlog on my YouTube channel: MaggiMei.

From here the possibilities are endless. Take you bag and your drink to go, and you become a party on the go. Or maybe you have ordered a bottle of wine at the restaurant and can’t finish, here your Porto-vino bag becomes the best doggy bag.

Either way this is a great gift for any wine lover on your list. I highly suggest getting yourself one and one for your friend to match. And you can do so by visiting the link below. Happy drinking.


Halo Top ice cream in Canada

“Halo Top” ice cream has recently hit Canadian grocery shelves, specifically the refrigerated section of your “Real Canadian SuperStore” and “Save On Foods”; and people have been going crazy for them. So I decided to visit both, across several locations, in order collect all the available flavours to conduct my own taste test. The goal was to see why did “Halo Top’s” reputation proceed them.

First it needs to be noted that “Halo Top” is clever for only offering certain flavours in certain countries; and that within each country, only certain flavours are available at certain grocery chains. They are the “frozen dairy dessert” brand known for their deliciousness despite their lower calorie count. But don’t be fooled like me, the numbers on the cardboard cup is not the total calorie count for the entire 473ml pint, but only for a fraction of it. For example the “Birthday Cake” flavour has the lowest calorie count at 80 calories. The 80 calories are for every 125ml serving. It also only has 6g of sugar per that 125ml serving. Great, but if you are like me, limiting yourself to half a cup of ice cream would be hard, so be prepared to do some math to see how many calories you actually have to work off.

Although, if you are like me, calories and having to count them, isn’t actually something you think about, is the ice cream still worth getting, for its flavour alone? Continuing reading to see if these $8 pints are worth checking out for yourself. And if so, which one should you be trying?

To watch the vlog version of this ice creamy review, visit my YouTube Channel: MaggiMei for my latest video.


To be honest when I originally filmed my review, versus my assessment here, my opinion of the below has changed. Maybe I was hungry in my video and should have eaten something more solid, before endeavouring on 6 pints of ice cream first thing in the morning. Or maybe I just enjoy ice cream more later at night. But whatever the reason, my second go at them all was better. I liked them more and now would more likely purchase my favourite flavours, even at the $8 price tag. And once again, I don’t calorie count, but if I did I would probably swear by these pints.

The first flavour I tried ended up being my favourite. “Mint Chip” had the perfect balance of refreshing mint versus bitter dark chocolatey chips, all bound together in a sweet vanilla ice cream base. It makes for a great palette refresher, or that dessert to perk you up after a heavier meal. My first bite had me finishing 3/4 of the same pint in one sitting, and I could have kept going if I didn’t catch myself. And it was because of this reaction did I decided to go out and gather all the other flavours, to see if they were just as good.

The “Birthday Cake” is a vanilla base ice cream that tastes like frosting and cake batter, with the sprinkles you’d expect from such a cake, mixed in. I personally could have used more sprinkles, but to keep it at 6g of sugar and 80 calories for a 125ml serving, sacrifices had to made.

“Sea Salt Caramel” was your classic flavour. Plenty of caramel in ribbons, woven through out the french vanilla ice cream base. Must like caramel and sugar, as this is definitely on the sweeter side.

Similar in flavour and sweetness was the “Pancakes & Waffles”. Except subtract caramel for maple syrup. It was a smokey sweetness with bits of batter to chew through. I don’t know what I was expecting, but I wished for some saltiness to balance things out. But I guess that would be their Chicken and Waffles flavour?

The “Peanut Butter Swirl” delivered on its name. As a peanut butter lover I found the taste was spot on, especially when you hit the actual swirls of peanut butter hidden throughout the more mild peanut butter flavoured ice cream (in comparison). I would have liked some crushed nuts in this one, as I prefer my peanut butter chunky. Or maybe some brittle to give it a textural chew. I would also love to see this flavour remixed with some jam for a peanut butter and jelly collab, or does that already exist?

The “Candy Bar” pint had the highest calorie count at 100, it also had the most going on within its cardboard cup. A malted chocolate base with swirls of fudge and crushed up peanuts. It was like having a hot chocolate sundae, minus the whipped cream and cherry on top. I liked the inconsistent spoonfuls and the bit of texture from chewing the tiny specks of peanuts sprinkled throughout.


Overall a great ice cream brand to check out, and now available at your local grocery stores at the right time. The weather is getting warmer and people are starting to consider their beach bodies. So being able to fully enjoy ice cream at a fraction of the calories is surely worth the extra cost right?





Movement108, presented by Saucony

Those who know me know that the last thing I’d ever want to do is exercise. I hate sweating and having to wash my long hair after sweating. However when presented with an opportunity to try something new, my curious spirit outweighs my lazy one. So this morning, at 9am I was found myself walking into “Movement108” for a fitness class.

This was a session sponsored by the athletic brand “Saucony”, founded two years after the first Olympic marathon and dedicated to running ever since. I have heard of the brand, but have never experienced it or its merchandise first hand. That was until today, when they geared me up for the morning ahead with my first set of actual and purposeful active wear. There are so many other athletic brands out there that I grew up with instead, so I was excited to see first hand what set “Saucony” apart. I was gifted gear from head to toe, with every everything I needed for a good work, minus the bra and underwear.

The shoes were surprisingly comfortable. They fit small so a half size up was the right ones for me. Shockingly they were easy to slip on and snug to stay on; even with no laces. Walking in them felt like you were gliding on padded ground. Each step was well cushioned, ideal for walking, jogging, running, and everything in between. Best, with their no slip socks that helped with the cushioning of my sole.

I had my option of tops between a supportive tank with peak-a-boo back or a loose fitting tee; both meant to absorb and wick-away moisture. Moisture like the bucket of sweat I would soon exude. But best of all was the yoga pants. This set of stretchy spandex leggings are the most supportive and comfortable I have ever wriggled myself into. A combination of lulu’s and Spanx. They have the wearability of Lululemon yoga pant; thick and dressy enough to wear around day to day, and maybe even low key to work. And the suppressing and forming abilities of Spanx shape wear. It sat firm and at all the right place to hide my muffin top. All above had me wondering what one of their supportive sports bras would have felt like.

Now that I was geared up it was time to put it all to the test. Luckily I was at the right place to do just that. Like it’s name suggests, “Movement108” is a fitness centre where the goal getting you to move. Movement with the focus of balance and strength, in order to foster mobility and stability in your every day motions.

Admittedly I am not a fit person, nor is it my goal to be. I work on my feet 9 hours a day and am use to walking great distances, and that has kept me relatively healthy. So already I knew I had an up hill climb. But I was motivated to do my best with the company I was in, including @pekopekolife, whom I was the plus one of. She and the instructor were great in keeping me going with their support and belief in me. Although towards the end of our session I was firm in listening to my body and knowing when to not push myself.

As for the actual hour long session we began by taking advantage of the clear day. We started our time together with a light jog around the block to get us warmed up.


When we got back in the studio we utilized the entire space and all the equipment in a series of exercises. Mind you, I am not sure of all the real names of things, so my recap is by novice descriptions of both the equipment and exercises. Kettle bells for squats and pushes, weighted balls for throw downs and pick ups, stretchy handlebars attached to a bar for lifting your own body weight, giant crates to step up on to, and heavy braided ropes attached to the wall to lift and slap against the ground. Each motion activated a different party of my body, and boy did I feel it. As intensive as it all was for a beginner, there were abbreviations you could make, to ease the difficulty level. On the flip side you could also edit the routine to give yourself an even greater challenge.


Each class is different and catered to the one taking it, so I won’t be going into detail on what it is we actually did. Instead, I invite you to visit their website and use it for a self guided consultation. But know that immediately after this class, my well used legs were sore from buttock to ankle. And the day after the whole body followed in soreness. So know that it was a good workout, and one that I was feeling days to come. Every body part got stretched and pulled without my realizing it; s every part was sore because of it. I don’t think I have ever been so sore from doing anything in my life.

In short, they are worth checking out if you are like me. You need something/someone/a reason to push and drive you in to a work out. Left to my own devices I would not visit my own home gym, let alone engage in any of the above. It is like university courses taken online, I am not driven enough as a student to do the work myself. I need somewhere to be and someone telling me what to do to in order for me to gain. And here they do it to great music and plenty of variety to keep you continuously engaged. In short a morning well spent, trying something new, and doing something that helped to better myself.


108-1529 6th Ave West, Vancouver BC, V6J 1R1



Testing Redee, an alcohol flush support product

How I avoid the Asian glow and give myself the ability to drink as much I do.


Whether are you seeing it or not, every one of my drinking escapades actually starts off with what I call my “drinking pill”. Aka the antacid pill, “Zantac”. A friend introduced the possibility of taking an antacid to help further my ability to drink and to avoid the dreaded Asian glow. And since then I have tried several different brands and percentages until I figured that “Zantac 150” worked the best for me. I need to take it before I drink to avoid turning red and having the feeling of heat creeping across my face and chest.

If I have the fore thought, I take one before I plan to drink. This prevents me from turning the least bit flush. So most of the time I keep them on me in case I find myself with the opportunity to drink. If I only remember to take one after a drink in, I will be left with nice rosy cheeks. It won’t helps me from turning any redder, and it even helps to bring down any colouring that is already there.

I typically pop one with a drink, often swallowing it with a spirit, beer or wine. And what it does is help my body break down alcohol, whereas my ancestors unfortunately weren’t able to pass that skill on to me. Not only do I avoid the Asian glow this way, but I have learned from continuous experience that these little triangles also help double, if not triple my drinking tolerance. Which means “Zantac” makes me be the drinking superhero I know I can and should be. I have purchased so many blister packs and turned so many others on to its magic that realistically they should be my sponsor and I their spokesperson and advocate.


The views expressed are my own. The actions of one person need not affect your own. Do your own research, question the “facts”, and proceed with caution.

According to google: “H2 (histamine) blockers (like Zantac and Pepcid) slow the metabolism of alcohol, increasing peak blood alcohol concentration to potentially dangerous levels.” In other words, antihistamines increase the rate at which blood alcohol levels rise, and can cause you to reach your limit much more quickly. If you’re not careful, you can reach toxic levels more quickly than you anticipate, making it more likely to experience alcohol poisoning and requiring hospitalization”.

I myself have been using this method for years and have encountered no issue. Nonetheless please proceed with caution.

But today I will be drinking, and leaving my secret weapon behind. Because today Joyce of @monkeyeatsworld and I tested a couple drinking patches. “Redee” reached out to her offering us a trial of their alcohol flush support product, wanting our feedback on how to improve them. The version we were testing this evening was actually their third rendition. Three times before they solicited a series of feedback, which they used to improve on their product to this point.

Each little patch is full of vitamins, antioxidants, and plant extracts. This propriety mix is released in to your body to help avoid that pesky Asian-glow. It is advised that you take 1-2 patches 20-30 minutes before your first drink. Two are for those who get flushed a great deal. It is advised that you peel off the sticker-ed patch and apply it to a dry and hairless part of your body, somewhere between the neck and waist region. They recommend the upper arm, shoulder, forearm, back, and chest.


So in my newest YouTube video, on my channel: MaggiMei we took this patch on a gauntlet of a product testing. A bottle of green tea sake at 7.5%, shared between two girls in the span of 60 minutes. For the complete review and how the product fared, check out the video. See for yourself if they are worth you purchasing. This version is available for purchase now. And if it doesn’t work for you, they offer a full money back guarantee to bring in those cautious skeptics.



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