Posts Written On December 2013

Get Baked: Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies with @ZulkaSugar

The holidays are a great time to experiment in the kitchen.  I was recently inspired to mix up a recipe for peanut butter chocolate chip cookies using a substitute for both white and brown sugars.  Zulka makes sugar that is minimally processed and comes straight from freshly-harvested sugar cane.  Their brown sugar is non-GMO project verified and blended with fresh molasses.  Together, they perfect an already stellar recipe.  Have at it and watch them disappear within a few minutes.


Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies 
1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup softened, unsalted butter 
1 cup crunchy peanut butter
3/4 cup Zulka Morena pure cane sugar
1/2 cup packed Zulka Brown pure cane sugar
1 egg
1 Tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup peanut butter chips
1 cup chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  In a large bowl, combine butter, peanut butter, and both sugars until well blended and creamy.  Mix in the egg, vanilla extract, and milk.  In a separate bowl, mix flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.  Combine the two mixtures, then mix in both chips.  Roll about 2 Tbsp of dough into a balls and place about 2” apart on an ungreased or paper lined baking sheet.  Press down lightly onto the baking sheet just enough to slightly flatten.  Bake for about 10 minutes and allow to cool completely before enjoying.  This recipe makes about 24-30 cookies.

Voilà! These cookies are dangerously delicious.

Read more about Zulka all-natural and unrefined granulated sugar at  Other creations of theirs include powdered pure cane sugar and picante sugar, which adds a touch of chili spice!  This is the good stuff, and it tastes great in coffee too.  SWEET.




10 Things an @iSkin keyboard protector can save your Mac from this Holiday.

Many of us will be eating, drinking and socializing over our MacBooks and iMac keyboards this holiday. Spills can have a big impact on your computer’s health and ultimately lead to it having to spend the Holidays at the repair shop.

Using a ProTouch keyboard proctor from iSkin can save your Mac if accidents do occur and can also help with keeping food particles and other impurities from entering between the keys and causing damage.

Here’s the list of 10 threats over the Holidays…

1. Red Wine – We all need to relax and catch up with family and friends with a glass of wine. But sudden jolts caused by laughter or other surprises can send a splash of the red goodness flying towards your keyboard and instantly end the joy.

2. Gravy – Nothing warms you more than gravy over your favourite meat. Well, watch out with each fork full as this stuff loves to drip and drip. Getting gravy between keys can not only look nasty, but dry and create sticky keys and lead to other serious issues.

3. Kids – With their sticky fingers, runny nose and sheer care-free Holiday spirits, kids are one of the major hazards aside from ourselves when it comes to dirt, food and other spills on your keyboard. ProTouch for kids not only gives them an enjoyable typing experience, it also keeps your keys safe. ProTouch keyboard protectors can also be removed and washed with hot water if things get sticky.

4. Fur and Hair –The warmth of a MacBook and could easily make your keyboard the resting spot for your cat or small dog. Fur and dead skin can easily make their way between keys and lodge between them. ProTouch is safe for animals and even if Fido decides to take a bite out of it, you can rest assured that no toxic ingredients are used in manufacturing it.

5. Sauces –Hot sauce, cranberry sauce, dipping sauce are a few of our favourite things. But for your keyboard, sauces are evil. They are often sticky and runny and make their way between keys and inside the keyboard quickly. So if you’re planning to do a little snacking next to your computer, you’d better watch out and don’t forget the ProTouch keyboard protector.

6. Eggnog –It’s warm, it’s yummy and sometimes it’s spiked with a nice rum. Problem is getting tipsy and doing a little FaceTime with family or friends can spell disaster. A splash of eggnog is loaded with sticky egg and sugar. It could quickly make its way between keys and have them stick or worse, stop working completely. Be safe don’t do it without your ProTouch keyboard protector.

7. Cookie, Cake Crumbs – What’s the Holidays without cookies and cake. These after dinner treats magically make their way to our bellies no matter where we are. In fact, when responding to our emails or downloading photos from our cameras, cookies and cake make time pass sweetly. Well these crumbs are silent and fall onto our keyboard and in between keys. Like most foods, they slowly spoil and get mouldy. This causes odours and other problems with your keyboard.

8. Hot Chocolate –On cold wintery nights, nothing beats a cup of hot cocoa while catching up with friends. A quick distractiion or sudden outburst of laughter can send splashes of the hot stuff onto your keyboard. Worry not, with a ProTouch to catch the fall, your keyboard could be spared the deadly combination of hot, sticky and sweet goodness.

9. Chocolate –Chocolate is to the Holidays what snow is to a snowman. Somehow it makes its way into our hands and mouth without effort. Well it also causes sticky fingers and those special liqueurs inside can also drip onto the keyboard and create a sticky situation. Of course, with your ProTouch keyboard protector in place, you can easily remove and wash it with hot water to remove any buildup of sticky things.

10. Pie Fillings –Grandma’s pie is destined to make your Holiday menu and snacking on leftovers when sneaking a FaceBook post in haste can cause crumbs and even fillings to drip between keys. The heat of the keyboard can cause these fillings to heat up and then harden causing keys to get sticky or unresponsive. Better not do it without your ProTouch keyboard protector.

Check out more iSkin products on


Dry Skin Rescue @SebamedUSA

Winter dry skin is the worst!  The scaly snake skin legs occur when I am too lazy to lotion after a shower and it freaks me out!  If you need a great lotion, try Sebamed Anti-Dry Hydration Lotion to save your skin this winter.  I remember the logo of Sebamed from my childhood and you know how much I love Retro!  So here is a cool throwback beauty secret you may have forgotten. Sebamed is a German skincare company established by Heinz Maurer in 1957.


Snow Ready

Phytosteroles, shea butter and other plant-derived lipids as well as a moisturizing complex with polysaccharides extracted from potato starch care for, smooth and soothe the skin.


The lotion is absorbed quickly and completely, leaving no trace of stickiness. The pH value of 5.5 protects the skin’s natural protective acid mantle against dehydration and irritants. In a three-week dermatological test, the care lotion improved the moisture content of dry skin by 26% even 10 hours after the last application and despite interim washing.



Keeping warm and using Sebamed since ’84.

For all day hydration and a brand that I remembered using all my life – Try Sebamed!


Sneak Peek at Technical Apparel Company @torenapparel

Hey adventurous readers!  A cool item for hiking and all your outdoorsy dreams….Check out this new technical apparel company called Toren.  Move over Patagonia, The North Face and Arc’teryx, and make room for TorenToren, a new fashionable brand of stylish, affordable and accessible technical apparel for men and women is planning its debut in the Spring of 2014! The brand was created to provide a high quality, reasonably priced alternative for consumers with an active outdoor lifestyle.  Notably, Toren is employing the unique approach of soliciting consumer input on product design and features via its blog, social media channels and website,

Recently, the brand received their second prototype back from the factory with exciting results to share!  Proto 2 is made with the exact three-layer waterproof rip-stop fabric we developed with Toray, and despite the minor alterations to be made, the Fundamental Shell is going to hit just the right balance between lightweight but still durable. This prototype was made in a vibrant orange, and it looks great with the contrasting black trim. Toren is also excited to let you in on one of the details we had been keeping up our sleeve – the Fundamental Shell will feature a clear polyurethane inner chest pocket, which allows you to use your smartphone through the pocket!  Not only is this a super awesome way to access your phone, but this innovation will go a long way in protecting your phone from getting wet or damaged in nasty weather conditions.


Toren will be introducing a number of new pieces in Fall 2014, including at least one insulated jacket, with the new synthetic and down insulations from Toray. For the first insulated piece, it is made of synthetic insulation, which performs under all conditions, unlike down, which loses its heating capabilities when wet. In addition to an insulated jacket, Fall 2014 will bring the debut of Toren’s mid-weight pullovers, perfect for layering. Toray is creating new knit fabrics which feature four way stretch for comfort and durability – the perfect combo!

 check out –>


Pollution Masks in China… As Fashion?

Hi all, I need to apologize for being MIA in the last two months! Unfortunately, reading and writing papers in Chinese is really taking a toll on my sleep cycle and stress levels. It also doesn’t help that the construction workers are working on a subway system right in front of my dorm. In China, there are no regulations that ban them from using jackhammers at 2 a.m. But anyway, I digress…

Screen Shot 2013-12-12 at 12.17.17 AM

I wanted to write a post about the latest fashion trend in Nanjing and Shanghai: pollution masks also known as 口罩. In the last week, pollution levels in several cities in China soared past 400 (pollution is usually at about 100-150 in Nanjing). When I first moved to China, I thought the masks were unnecessary, but last week the air was so bad that it made my eyes itch and you could physically feel the particles in the air. I thought that pollution was nothing to freak out about until I experienced all of this. At school, everyone was talking about different models of filters and designer mask brands.  One of my American professors even wore a $75 pollution mask during the entire class. Another professor talked about the supply and demand of products that pollution would cause: one of the more well-known brands of masks called 3M sold out on Taobao last week. Below are some images of the popular things sold amid the pollution frenzy.

Screen Shot 2013-12-12 at 12.19.04 AM

Holiday Hee Hee T-Shirts from @Themountaintees

Holiday time means family time and a little bit of laughter can help offset the pressure of being with your parents for too long.  All the uncomfortable questions, meeting the in-laws or  that annoying relative we all have…  Check out these funny Mountain Tee’s that are sure to make you giggle.  I love them all!

Squirelly Christmas @Themountaintees

With all shirts starting at $20, nothing says “Happy Holidays” quite like an orangoutang sipping hot chocolate, a scowl from holiday grumpy catGrumpenezer Scrooge‘s ugly mug or a prancing unicorn.