Grilled octopus and avocado $13 / crispy pork belly $14

via Instagram
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Vietnam house ( formerly Thai Hang) / below $10 / hastings and lakewood

via Instagram
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Guest post with - Read it here!

Check out their website here

Q: How long have you been couponing?

A: We have been couponing for the past 5 years.

Q: Why did you start couponing?

A: We started because we wanted to stretch our dollars since we live in a pretty expensive city. We feel that is the best way to LIVE SMART like the slogan of our blog. If we're able to use our resources to save on our necessities then we can save some money for fun things =)

Q: How long have you had your blog?

A: We had this blog since 2012.

Q: What prompted you to get started with blogging?

A: We wanted to share our experience with other readers that it doesn't take a lot of effort to save money and keep your personal finances in shape.

Q: What do you like most about couponing?

A: It is the easiest way to save money!

Q: Where is your favorite place to shop with coupons?

A: The grocery store and online.

Q: What advice would you give to couponing newbies?

A: Never buy anything online without checking to see if there are coupons!

Q: What is the biggest challenge couponers face?

A: Sometimes these coupons are only available for first time users which can cause some disappointment when you're a returning customer.

Q: Where do you see the future of couponing going?

A: Couponing will be really accessible and necessary for shopping!

Q: Have any final thoughts?

A: Shop smart and always ask yourself if there are coupons before you buy something!
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Foodie Review: Sushimoto

We've always gone to Sushi Town or Sushi Garden and wanted to try something new.  So we went on Urbanspoon to look for a new sushi place and found Sushimoto.  We went here on a Saturday and it was full but not as crazy as Sushi Town or Sushi Garden.  Similar to the other two, Sushimoto is also operated by Koreans and their dishes were similar.

I also tried to reserve a spot for dinner at 6pm and all the available reservation spots were booked.  We had to do walk-in, but it only took about 5 mins to get our seats.

The decoration in the restaurant was pretty unique, they have decorated with lots of figurines and Japanese decorations.

We were four people so we ordered two special rolls (vegas and volcano), a deluxe assorted sashimi, seared tai flower and a tempura udon to share.

We were not too impressed with the special rolls because it tasted somewhat similar (same sauce?) and didn't have much of a distinct taste of anything.  The rolls were also pretty loose and everything fell out and hard to grab.

The sashmi was fresh and was nicely defrosted.  It was perfect for four people since everything was in portions of four except for the shrimp.  The shrimp was also fresh - it was spot prawns - maybe they were in season ?  The waitress offered to also tempura the spot prawn heads for free. 

The seared tai flower was tasty.  It was in a bath of ponzu and the flavour was perfect.  The texture of the seared tai was great because it wasn't too slimy.

The udon was like any other place and had good portions of tempura shrimp.

Overall, the restaurant was just average for us.  If you want value, sushi town and sushi garden is still the place to be.  Their portions are bigger tastes just a slightly better.  We thought the slices of sashimi we had at sushimoto would be a bit thicker, but it seems like their slices are a bit thinner than what you would expect at sushi town or sushi garden.

Sushimoto 鮨元 on Urbanspoon

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Foodie Review: Szechuan House Restaurant

We are definitely returning customers at this restaurant.  Every time I wish to eat something fulfilling, this is my go-to place.
There are several types of Szechuan dishes we've tried there.

The spicy special oil dishes look very authentic. There is plenty of chili and numbing szechuan peppers. The oil is properly flavoured, plenty of crushed garlic. Very aromatic. There are also sweet bean paste style dishes which are very good. 

Dishes we've tried:
- spicy pork intestine 
- pork belly with tree mushroom, in a sweet special sauce
- beef tripe in special spicy sauce

The dishes have plenty of meat. We usually just order 2 dishes and rice for 2 people and it is definitely enough.

All very good. In my opinion the best Szechuan deal in town.

Szechuan House Restaurant (Burnaby) 巴渝菜舍 on Urbanspoon

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Foodie Review: Sardine Can

Mr Frugal really likes Spanish food, so we decided to visit Sardine Can to try out their tapas.  We've heard good things about this place, but also acknowledge that this place can get expensive.  But since we decided to have an early dinner, it was a great place to grab some tapas!

Sardine Can on Urbanspoon

This place is a pretty small place, but is packed with good food.  

We ordered:

Tostas de Sardinas: Smoked Sardine on Toast

 Estufado de pulpo Octopus, potato and chorizo casserole


We really enjoyed the food that was there.  We were actually pretty full from our order.  

The Octopus, potato and chorizo casserole was our favourite.  It was cooked perfectly and had a good kick from the chorizo.  

The Paella was amazing! For the tapa sized Paella, it was packed with some good and BIG juicy seafood - as you can see from our picture - the prawn was huge!  High quality seafood for sure.  The unusual thing about this dish is that it's a bit drier than that you would expect compared to a traditional Paella.  Despite that, it was a pretty good dish!

Overall, we really enjoyed this nice little place.  It was tasty and we'll definitely come back for another visit.

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Foodie Reviews: Mr Red Cafe

Mr. Red Cafe on Urbanspoon

This place first caught our eye because it claims to be the "quintessence" of Vietnamese food.  That is a bold claim to have, so we decided to try for ourselves!

The exterior of the cafe is interesting because it looks a bit ghetto with red lettering all over the place ( i guess to be consistent with the cafe name?) , but the inside is very nicely decorated.  We were greeted promptly by the server and had very good service.

The menu had some very authentic and unique Vietnamese food, some that you can't find at other "Pho" places since most Vietnamese restaurants' specialty is just Pho.  We decided to try something new and ordered a platter of sliced pork hoc with deep fried tofu with shrimp paste and a Bun bo hue (pho) to try.

The platter was authentic, though bland.  People that are not Vietnamese might not know how to eat it/ assemble it.  This dish was pretty minimalistic.  It doesn't really hit the spot.  It can be described as a normal home cooked dish in the countryside.

The Bun bo hue (pho) we ordered was of decent size, and somewhat different from other Bun bo hue (pho) we've had.  This is because their soup base is a bit different, not like the shrimp paste based we're used to (thicker broth).  This has a clearer broth and doesn't have any pork hoc in it.  It was a tasty dish over all.

Over all, we recommend this place if you want to try something new, but it's not your usually Pho joints.

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Vancouver Craft Brewery Guide

In recent years, Vancouver has become one of the well-known craft brewery cities.  Much like Portland, we not have a big hipster community and along with that, comes all the cool craft breweries - with affordable tasty beer!

We have been enjoying our  new affordable hangouts and here are a few that we've tried recently:

2$ sampler, 7$ flight 4.5$ glasses
framboise noir: nice thick raspberry texture, light alcohol taste, very refreshing
hefeweizen: not your usual diluted hefeweizen. This one was quite thick and strong taste, refreshing wheat flavor
middle drink, not super memorable
IPA: as usual, hoppy

ultimate lowest price, 1$ samplers, 3$ glass
tried porter, grapefruit, IPA, geezer, pilsner
nothing was extra spectacular, the IPA was the usual hoppy IPA taste, the pilsner was a normal budweiser style taste, the porter and geezer had a nice levels of coffee flavor. The grapefruit beer was not intensely grapefruity but had the aroma

IPA and porter
IPA was the usual hoppy IPA

3$ glass
had tastes, IPA and stout

stronger hoppy IPA, stout was nice and thick

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How to EARN money while you SHOP

How to EARN money while you SHOP

It's inevitable...even the frugal-est of people sometimes have to go on a shopping spree...but that doesn't mean that you can't do it smart.  If you've read my post about splurging for an Apple MacBook, then you'll know that I've found a way to get a big discount on my purchase.  What I didn't disclose in that post was that I also found another cost saving by signing up to Ebates Canada.

Is Ebates a scam you ask ? Really, this site seems too good to be true, but after reading through their website and have seen commercials on TV, they looked pretty legit.  Ebates is a "cash back shopping" and has been around since 1998.  They've only really started in Canada in 2012 and have international counterparts in the US, Korea, China and Russia.  If you're still skeptical, they have good reviews from highly regarded organizations like Cosmopolitan, Yahoo, CTV News ..etc.. If you're STILL not convinced, they have  Better Business Bureau rating of A+.

It's rare that there are any deals you can from Apple, but Ebates offer 1% cash back from Apple Canada... which is a lot when you consider how expensive Apple products are !

Here's what my cashback looked like from my last purchase:

Ebates Canada Apple

It really does work !!

Not buying from Apple ? Don't worry, they have tons of other well know brands you can shop from.

Ebates Canada Shop

It's true you can actually earn money while you shop ! So lesson of the day is just because you want to save money doesn't mean you can't buy anything just need to shop smarter!

Will you be using Ebates to shop smarter?

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Grocery prices - what you need to know to stay on budget !

Product Review of Brooklyn Olde Lantern

Do you ever do your groceries based on what you want to eat ? I think most people do, but those impulse buys at the grocery stores might cost you if you're not careful and you stock up on "sales".  When we do our groceries we always have a reference price in our head to makes sure that we're in fact are buying something on "sale".  It doesn't happen very often, but some groceries might mark up their price and then slash it go make it seem like you are getting a big discount.

So how do you know or get a reference price to compare ?  I went to Google and found this list from Statistics Canada
Unit2015 PricePrice in Lbs
Round steak1 kg18.418.35
Sirloin steak1 kg21.289.65
Prime rib roast1 kg28.1612.77
Blade roast1 kg15.947.23
Stewing beef1 kg15.827.18
Ground beef, regular1 kg12.295.57
Pork chops1 kg12.935.86
Chicken1 kg7.413.36
Bacon500 g6.84
Wieners450 g4.37
Canned sockeye salmon213 g4.71
Homogenized milk1 l2.49
Partly skimmed milk1 l2.34
Butter454 g4.61
Processed cheese food slices250 g2.88
Evaporated milk385 ml1.81
Eggs1 dz3.28
Bread675 g2.83
Soda crackers450 g2.73
Macaroni500 g1.52
Flour2.5 kg5.12.31
Corn flakes675 g4.91
Apples1 kg3.731.69
Bananas1 kg1.670.76
Grapefruits1 kg2.731.24
Oranges1 kg3.26
Apple juice, canned1.36 l2.1
Orange juice, tetra-brick1 l4.19
Carrots1 kg1.880.85
Celery1 kg2.771.26
Mushrooms1 kg8.383.80
Onions1 kg1.770.80
Potatoes4.54 kg5.552.52
French fried potatoes, frozen1 kg2.721.23
Baked beans, canned398 ml1.34
Tomatoes, canned796 ml1.67
Tomato juice, canned1.36 l2.37
Ketchup1 l3.47
Sugar, white2 kg2.811.27
Coffee, roasted300 g6.41
Coffee, instant200 g6.74
Tea (bags)724.46
Cooking or salad oil1 l4.12
Soup, canned284 ml1.02
Baby food128 ml0.94
Peanut butter500 g3.57
Fruit flavoured crystals2.25 l1.74
Soft drinks, cola type2 l1.99
Soft drinks, lemon-lime type2 l1.9
Paper towels (rolls)22.59
Facial tissue2002.6
Bathroom tissue (rolls)42.6
Shampoo300 ml3.88
Deodorant60 g4.4
Toothpaste100 ml2.45

I hope you find this list helpful ! What other methods help you stay on budget?

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How to make a Sous-Vide Cooker !

How to make a Sous-Vide Cooker !

Want to make a juicy steak?? without all the mess and the timing stress to get the perfect cook ?  Well, the handy-guy in the household found a way to make a cheap sous-vide cooker to cook our food - saves time and tastes great !

Here's a list of materials if you want to get started on this project:

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Get 50% off or 2 for 1 when you eat out in Vancouver, BC !

Product Review of Brooklyn Olde Lantern

BiteBC Vancouver

Just found this awesome app that for all the people that eat out in Vancouver ! As a young working couple, we know how hard it is to cook sometimes..and then our solution would be eat out all the time..but that also takes a toll on our bank account - that's why we always look out for deals in the city, but sometimes they just end up being pub food.  With this app we are hopeful that it will help us find other affordable restaurants !

We got a chance to ask BiteBC a few questions :

What is BiteBC?

Bite BC is a diners members club in the form of a new mobile app that allows you to enjoy 50% discounts (or 2 for 1 meals) at restaurants in Vancouver – all year, an unlimited number of times.

What's the story behind it?

As a company, Bite BC’s mission is to not only help restaurant guests save money, but also to help support local restaurant businesses by encouraging people to dine out more and enjoy more of what Vancouver has to offer. It’s a win-win situation!

How does this save me money?

Here’s how it works: after downloading the Bite BC app, you instantly become part of a large-scale diners club that allows you to locate all participating restaurants and bars, all through the app. Within a matter of taps, you can then make a booking and enjoy delicious food for half the price.Unlike with coupon competitors, Bite BC can be used almost any day of the year, as many times as you want. If you’ve fallen in love with a meal or enjoy treating your friends, you can enjoy those discounts without an expiration date or rushed “one time only” kind of deal.

How much does it cost?

a 3 month trial is free after which you can choose to purchase a 6 month ($29) or 12 month ($49) membership

Download the App !

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My trusted skin care products for sensitive skin

My trusted skin care products for sensitive skin

I have very sensitive skin and eczema, so when I choose skincare it’s always a hit or miss.  Sometimes it works great, and then it doesn’t work so well after a while.  After many years of trying moisturizers, here some that I find works best with my sensitive skin.



Clinique has always advertised as a brand that is gentle on skin and dermatologist tested.

I like how light these feel on my skin and are not as oily as some moisturizers might be.


Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel or Lotion

The gel version of this is a bit light for me sometimes, but when the weather is hot and I’m in a humid environment, it works great.  The lotion can be a bit oily, but I usually switch between the gel or lotion depending on how dry my skin is.


 Moisture Surge Overnight Mask

This has been my favourite lately.  Although it says overnight mask, I use it as my everyday face moisturizer.  It has thick enough texture that it feels really hydrating for my skin, but at the same time doesn’t leave a floating layer that some of the oilier moisturizer has.

estee lauder

 Estee lauder Advanced Multi-Protection Crème – Oil Free SPF 25

This crème is great for those really dry days when you need a moisturizer to last you a whole day.  I chose the Oil Free version because of my sensitive skin and my skin can’t handle too much oil.  Another great thing about this moisturizer is the SPF included…perfect for my lazy nature ;)


Clinique Liquid Facial Soap – Mild

This has to be the gentlest cleanser I’ve used so far.  Usually other cleansers leave my skin really dry after I use it.  But this one actually feels moisturizing and gentle on my skin.

 As you can see, most of my products are from Clinique.  It has been really good to my sensitive skin, and unlike other brands, it is reasonably cheap – comparable to drug store cleanser prices!

If you have sensitive skin like me, I hope these might help you choose your perfect moisturizer!

Featured on :

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8 Phone apps to earn some cash !

There is an app for that ! Here are a few apps that can put some money in your pocket !

1) EasyShift

How it works:

Youíre asked to review Shift instructions and product specs, while collecting information in stores. With this redesign, the focus was to make that experience even more effortless. Everything from finding to completing Shifts needed to feel fluid, responsive, and easy to understand.

Earn cash anywhere.
Find quick jobs at local stores and shops.

Take photos of products, check prices, and review promotions. Itís as easy as shopping.

Earning potential: $3- $15
Payments will be made via PayPal and can be processed within 48 hours.

2) App Trailers

How it works:
Preview trailers about apps and earn points while youíre at it. Help the app makers improve their app trailers by sharing honest opinions about what they need to add to complete the trailer.

Earning potential: You get paid half a cent for each video you watch. For trying out a demo (of an app), you can get paid between 9 cents to a dollar. Joining via a friendís referral code may give you a head start of 50 points.

3) Iconzoomer

What to do: Take photos of what is asked in your assignment: your lunch, your drink, or the shoes you are wearing, and earn money for each snap. Share a comment about the snapshot (if you got a feedback you want the manufacturer the know, this is your chance), and thatís it.

Take photos of food and fashion products, send your photos in to the Icon Zoomer developers and designers, and earn PayPal cash for completing assignments.

Read more:

Earning Potential: Average Pay: $5+

4) Gigwalk

What You Do: Choose a gig or small errand around your town to complete.

Earning Potential: $10 to $15 an hour.

5) Shopkick

What You Do: Get "kicks" (points) just for walking into a store! You can trade those points in for rewards. Also, you can see which discounts are happening at any store you're in.

Earning Potential: $5+

6) TaskRabbit

What You Do: Choose between tons of random tasks, from moving furniture to taking photographs.

Earning Potential: $5 to $50

7) GymPact

What to do: Exercise at the gym and earn money. Once youíve made a week-long pact on GymPact, you get paid for every day you go, and you have to pay for every day you skip. Those who get to the gym to exercise get to claim their monies from those who didnít!

Earning Potential: Youíre getting $0.50 to $0.75 per workout which must lasts a minimum of 30 minutes. And you get to follow your exercise regime, and keep fit and healthy.

8) ESPN Streak For The Cash

What to do: Think you know your sports team? Then name your predictions for each game and make sure you get the longest winning streak of the month. To make it tougher, you have to make the call for 10 different sports and maintain your streak.

Earning Potential: The longest winning streak for a team or a player will win a monthly grand prize of $50,000.

Do you have any other apps that you use ? Comment below !

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Swamped ? Here's my productivity solution

If you're starting your new blog, a new business or any project in general, you'll know how much time it takes to get things started. I'm currently trying to start my own consulting business and i've been so distracted by all the task i need to start doing !  If you've read  The 4 hour workweek then you'll know that it suggests getting a virtual assistant and outsourcing your work...well, that's exactly what i'm trying to achieve.  My first concerns are

  1. how do i choose a good reliable company?

  2. how can someone do my own work better than me ??

  3. do i really have the money to hire  a virtual assistant?

to answer those questions here's how I decided on getting help:

choosing a good company

i decided on using Fancy Hands because they charge by task where as other companies count by hours and each task is around $5, which is pretty affordable.  Another thing i like about this is they're based in the US, where as other VA companies might be based in India or Phlilppines and the lanuage barrier might be big and the quality of work might not be as good.

Can they do work as good as me ?

I realized that i have to let go of this thought if i need to get help.  Of course i'll always like doing my own work because i get to control the quality of my work, but when it comes to freeing up your time, you'd have to learn how to delegate.  What i realized too was that sometimes I don't do work as good as other people and one big this is that working with other people gives me new perspective which is really important.

Can I afford help ?

If you're starting a business one thing you'll have to learn is to use your resources.  When you can outsource your mundane repetitive work at maybe $10-$15 to someone else, it's worth it.  You won't get bogged down on the details and get to actually work and expand your business ideas.

Can you think of any start-up tips that would be useful? 

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5 easy steps for a cleaner kitchen

A busy person’s cleaning hacks !

Let's face it...nobody likes cleaning...especially the kitchen!  It seems like it's always grab and go and the effort of cleaning the kitchen seems not be at the bottom of the priority list..I mean..I want FOOD not CLEANING !

Here are some quick cleaning tips that can help you clean faster the next time around:

Lemon Wedge your Sink and Taps

This is a simple way to get your sink to look shiny and brand new again, which will give you that wonderful feeling when you enter your kitchen every day. Something about a clean, shiny kitchen sink, just makes us feel better. Cut a lemon in half and rub the juice all over the metal. It cuts grease, disinfects and smells awesome!

Baking Soda and Vinegar

These two general household items you have in your cupboard will help you with a myriad of cleaning problems. Mix a paste of a half a cup of baking soda with a few teaspoons of water and apply it to your sink, your oven door, your stove, or in your refrigerator. Let the paste dry completely so that it really permeates the tough grease and dirt. Then spray with vinegar. Beware it will start sizzling! But this is exactly what you want, because that means that you don’t have to scrub for hours. Once the vinegar has done all the hard work for you, take a hard sponge or steel wool and scrub the remainder of the dirt. Wipe clean with a microfiber cloth once clean.

Hot vs Cold Water

Washing dishes has to be the worst, most miserable, time consuming task in the kitchen, but you could be making the task so much more difficult by not understanding the difference between hot water and cold water for certain dishes. For caked on egg and milk that has been burnt into a pan, hot water will make it worse. These items are proteins and will become more resistant when in contact with heat. Use cold water for cleaning egg, milk, yoghurt, caked on cheese or any other protein based food item.

Bowl of Vinegar in the Microwave

For those annoying, hard splatters of food, the best way to clean it is to place a cup of water with 2 tablespoons of vinegar in the microwave for 5 minutes. It will loosen the grime and you can very easily wipe it off.

Cream of Tartar

This works wonders on stainless steel appliances. Make it into a paste and rub it on your toaster, kettle, or refrigerator door with a soft cloth to get rid of those grease splatters and dirty finger marks. Wipe it off again and you will have shiny, clean appliances.

We procrastinate when things aren’t easy, or when it seems like such a mission to do. So, all you have to do is find a way to make cleaning the kitchen simple.

Want to learn more time saving cleaning tips?

Get this ebook ! 

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Why you should buy refurbished Apple products

I recently was searching for a MacBook Air and was discouraged by the fact that it was SO expensive !  I was really hoping to get one because I was finally tired of lugging around my heavy laptop around ( plus side was that it had a large screen!).  The battery was next to nothing and some keys on the keyboard was starting die on me.

So there I was at the Apple store gawking at the slim and battery efficient MacBook Airs, wondering where I can get the best deal from for getting an Apple product- since they're luxury products, they rarely go on sale.  I obviously considered buying second hand and looking on Craigslist and Ebay, but they're a hit or miss sometimes.  I need more reassurance if I'm going to fork out $1000 for my MacBook.

Then a thought came to me...

What about a refurbished Mac?

I then went on handy Google and searched.

And it was then that i was certain that I should definitely get a refurbished MacBook Air from the Apple store and here's why.

Apple has a really great refurbishment process and policy

The refurbished products come with a new outer shell, new battery, and the same one-year warranty that new hardware comes with. Pretty much a new MacBook, physically and performance wise

A huge saving

You would be able to get a MacBook Air 11" for $950 after taxes and shipping is always free !  That's around $300 of savings - which would be hard to find with Apple products.

Not happy with it ?

You still have the same 14 day return policy as if you are not satisfied with it.

Will you buy refurbished now?

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5 signs you're an entrepreneur !

I'm currently amazed (and a bit obsessed !) by entrepreneurship so I did some reading.  These are some interesting things that I've picked up.  I think it's so interesting to see how entrepreneurs have a completely mindset compared to the rest of the people (apparently called "consumers" ).

Here are 5 signs that make you an entrepreneur:

1. You know your time is valuable

you outsource whenever you can and get other people to carry out mundane tasks for you.

2. You didn't just buy yourself a job

being an entrepreneur doesn't mean that you are working 24/7- you work smart but hard.  When you're spending all your time running the business you maybe be spreading yourself thin, with little to show for.

3. You are a big picture person

you are not bogged down by the details.  You know how to bring resources together to work for you.

4. You're not a nice person... least some of the time.  You can't be a push over if you want to achieve your goal.  You know your limits and know when to put your foot down.

5. You always think "what's in it for me ?"

you are always interested in your return on investment.  Even if you're running on Passion, you can only do so much based on that.  If you don't start making any return on investment, your business will be a flop.

 What do you think? Do you have any other characteristics you can think of ?

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Our pick for travel plug converter

We travel quite a bit..for work and for when it comes to bringing our electronics, we often have to find the right plug converter.  A trusted website that we always buy from is DealExtreme. It has great prices for a variety of accessories.  This has to be the best deal we've seen for a portable universal travel plug - especially compared to the prices at the airport ! It converts for US/UK/EU and AU plugs.

This product works and for that price, it won't hurt your wallet when you lose it during your trip !

If you're planning to buy from DealExtreme, be sure to buy a month ahead of time as they take a while to least from my experience (but maybe because we also don't pay for express post!)

Looking to buy the product? Click below or this link !

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10 things to remember to keep you motivated !

It's the end of January and maybe you've already ran out of fuel from your New Year's Resolution hype.  If you need an extra boost of motivation, here is my go-to list for getting things done !

10 things to remember to keep you motivated:

  1.  Everybody has 24 hours !

    Just because someone is more successful than you doesn't mean they have more time ! They just know how to use their time more wisely to get sh*t done !

  2. Talking about doing something is not a plan

    “The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.” – Walt Disney

  3. Don't be discouraged...great minds think differently!

    “Beware of your critics. Mediocre minds are the greatest enemy of innovation.” – Robert Sofia

  4. Get help when you need it

    "You get in life what you have the courage to ask for.” – Nancy D. Solomon

  5. Don't let fear hold you back

    “If you push through that feeling of being scared, that feeling of taking risk, really amazing things can happen.” – Marissa Mayer

  6. Take mistakes as lesson learned

    "Show me a person who never made a mistake, and I will show you a person who never did anything.” – William Rosenberg

  7. Don't turn down opportunities

    1. “If somebody offers you an amazing opportunity but you are not sure you can do it, say yes – then learn how to do it later!” – Richard Branson

  8. Be present.  No more excuses for missing those events you wanted to go to

    "Eighty percent of success is showing up." Woody Allen

  9. Take the risk

    "Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." Anais Nin

  10. and most importantly....Stay positive !

    “The way you begin each day defines how you’ll live each day.” – Robin Sharma

Go out there and do great things!

What gives you motivation ?

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Foodie Review - PiDGiN

" Stylish restaurant offering creative, French-influenced takes on Asian cuisine plus craft cocktails." 
PiDGin on Urbanspoon

We went to this place for DineOut Vancouver and was really impressed with the way they ran DineOut.  Usually restaurants want you to choose one appetizer, entree and dessert from their menu, but at PiDGiN, they have a preset menu where you can try an array of food - which I think what DineOut should be!

My favourite dishes were:

  • tuna, smoked yolk puree, shishito pear salsa

Clean and naturally flavoured.  Really enjoyed the freshness of this dish

  • soft shell crab, bouillabaisse, octopus chips

the soft shell crab was AMAZING.  Full of flavour and meaty.  Every item in this dish really captured the essence of the sea !

  • beef striploin, lobster bisque cabbage, pickled shimeji

Perfectly grilled beef striploin with a hit of charred flavour.  Prefect meat to fat ratio.

  • shishito peppers, parmesan, pine nuts 

Aroma of the peppers really came through from the grilling.  A dish that really surprised me with its flavour.

  • “dan dan” kohlrabi noodle salad, tofu, almonds

Although this was a vegetarian dish, it still had a lot of flavour and really mastered the taste of the real dan dan noodles.






VALUE: *** Average *** - Their food portion is small, so beware that if you have a large group or if you have a big appetite, it might not be the place for you !

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How to increase productive this year!

asana how to increase productivity

It’s a bit late to talk about New Year’s resolution, but since December, I’ve been trying Asana for my personal projects.  This seems like more of a business app, but I decided to give it a try for all the projects in my life.

So far, this has proven to be a very useful tool to keep track of all the projects I have going on.  Even small ones like grocery lists.  I used to keep everything in a note book, but then things get lost in old pages and you can never find where you wrote that task you forgot to do.

Here are things I like about Asana:

Great planner for couples

It doesn’t have to for your other half, but you can share your “projects” or task list with someone else.   It gives an organized view of what needs to be done around the house or for you vacation planning and it sends email reminders for tasks with due date.

An overview of all my tasks

I can see all the tasks I’m doing for each project together.  You can also have sub categories for each project so you can break down your tasks.  It works well for my mind dump of all the blog ideas I have !

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You can access it pretty much everywhere

I like to use Asana on my browser, but there is also an app you can download on your phone.  That means you can add those extra tasks that comes to mind when you’re out and check what tasks needs to been done when away from your computer.

You can sync to your Google Calendar

Another good features is that you can set deadlines for each task and see each deadline in you Google Calendar.  You can do this by getting the link for a specific project and then adding it to your Google Calendar.

Increases your productivity!

I find that because I have an organized list of what needs to be done, I am able to get things done faster and prioritize what needs to be done.  And a feeling of ACCOMPLISHMENT when you check off a completed task!
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Foodie Review - Cafe Salade de Fruits

This place is a hidden gem!  It’s tucked away in the French Cultural center where it’s a very fitting place for the restaurant.   I’ve been here twice and it never disappoints, but you should book ahead as they’re always busy!

Café Salade de Fruits on UrbanspoonMy recommendation is to get their mussels…and with fries (there’s an option for salad)!  Their mussels are the juiciest you’ll ever have and their fries are done to perfection – thin and crispy.  Did I also mention that you’ll also get the biggest portion of mussels you’ll ever see ??

I’ve always gone during dinner service, having a dish per person gets me super full.  If you’re looking for more value, you can also go during lunch hour, where you can enjoy the same food for cheaper.

They also have weekly specials (table d’hote) which is a set menu that comes with an appy and dessert.  The weekly specials are also not set, so check back for new items!

The last time I had the grilled meat combo, and everything was really well made.  The shrimp was super juicy, the salmon was cooked perfectly and not fishy, and their steak was really tender.  I had no complaints !

Value: Awesome!   You get high quality food for a reasonable price.  A really homey place to eat at. **reminder that this place only takes cash !**
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