Not our Average Sunday…

by Leanne Vogel (Healthful Pursuit) on March 19, 2012

Kevin and I headed into the city yesterday afternoon to attend the Calgary Health Show using a pair of tickets I won on Facebook.

We generally spend our Sundays hanging out in our pj’s, having pancakes for lunch, maybe indulging in a light nap in the afternoon, and if we’re feeling up to it, bath time for the little one in the evening.

But not this Sunday, no, no. We were off on a mission to check out new products, catch up with colleagues, and sample great food.

And let’s be honest… in the end, it’s all about the food.

There were a bit too many supplement focused booths for my taste, but I did manage to find some interesting things!

Ones that peaked my interested included:

  • mila miracle seed, a blend of chia seeds that are cold-proccessed and; due to the diversity of the seeds, allow for a higher nutrition content. Unfortunately they didn’t have any samples :(
  • green tea extract, which was a great concept… until I read the ingredients. The thought behind the product is – extract all of the antioxidants from green tea and drop them into a to-go packet. Problem was they had ingredients like artificial flavor and sucralose.
  • evestribe, a social networking site for women. The owner; Shelley, and her daughter, Jade were two lovely and amazing women that I instantly connected with.

The best product we came across were viabars, the tastiest organic oat bars we’ve ever had.

These bars are naturally gluten-free, raw, locally made (just a hop, skip and a jump from my front door) and the owner; Christiane, is absolutely lovely! She knows her product inside and out, has planned for growth, and prides herself in quality, even if that means she can’t grow as fast as suppliers and grocers would like her to.

And… her packaging is super colorful and fun. I know, that means little to some people, but I just feel good eating something that looks good.

She had the cutest booth set up with glass domes housing each bar flavor in bite sized portions. I stood there and tried each of the nut-free flavors while we chatted about her business.

To top it all off, she sent me home with 6 of her favorite bars to try out – coconut almond, berry coconut, almond-berry orange, coconut craving, black forest and cinnamon mochachino!

Based on the taste test I performed yesterday, I’ve planned to save berry coconut for last. It was the most delicious, by far and the ingredients blew me away: pure oats, brown rice syrup, sunflower seeds, unrefined cane sugar, cranberries, crisp brown rice, coconut, flax, coconut oil, chia seeds, hemp seeds, vanilla extract, Himalayan rock salt.

Himalayan rock salt in a store-bought, raw bar… a dream come true!

I’m certain that you guys would love these bars just as much as we did. They’re only available in Planet Organic and a couple other health food stores in Alberta and Ontario. With the rate her company is growing, I have no doubt that you’ll see them in at your local health food store in the near future.

Right before we left, I picked up the gift that came with my free tickets; a basket from my favorite gluten-free store in Calgary.

Seriously, could this day get any better?

The owners; Vicki and Pat, are hard working, passionate and just great people to be around. I’ve watched their company grow from a couple of products on the back shelf to a full-blown gluten-free grocer, complete with an online store.

All in all, it was a great day filled with smiles, sunshine… and a couple s’mores.

Gosh those graham crackers are to die for.

What did you do this weekend?

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I wanted to thank everyone that shared their stories and showed support on Saturday. Opening myself up to vulnerability was a challenging lesson to learn and even harder to put into words. Thank you for your comments, emails, and Facebook messages. Many of us have acknowledged that we have a hard time opening up to people, feeling that we’re worthy, and accepting our imperfections. But hey, at least we know we’re not alone for the ride :)

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{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

char eats greens

What an awesome gift to claim!!! I think I’d seriously like to go to something like this. I love food, but have never thought to go to an expo! I’d most definitely love to go to one this summer!

I spent the weekend studying…nothing fun about 2 midterms and an assignment due this week!

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Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat

What a fun event! I know what you mean about things like this being very supplement-focused. The Can Fit Pro Toronto tradeshow is often like that, but like you, I do manage to find some pretty cool things there too! The Viabars sound delicious! Do you know if they’re available in Ontario yet? I’d love to get my hands on some. Sounds like a very fun Sunday!! This weekend I enjoyed our gorgeous weather, went for my first long outdoor run of the year (it was AWESOME!) and did a lot of cooking – all fairly successful which doesn’t happen often!! :) Have a great day Leanne!

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Danielle

Those bars look delicious. Will be sure to try and find them in my local health food store… (I’m in Ontario) Sounds like a great weekend! :)

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Cheryl @ happy is the new healthy

That looks like a lot of fun! I love Trade Shows–but I don’t like feeling like I’m being dooped. I get that vibe sometimes at the CanFit Pro conference trade show when I go. Lots of supplements and big promises. I’m all for people passionate about their products, but I think they should sell themselves. Those bars seem to do that—if you picked it up, you’d know it was good!

I had a good weekend–we have summer like weather in Ontario so it’s hard not to smile!

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Averie @ Averie Cooks

I’ve heard those graham crackers are fabulous, too. I need to try them.

And what a FUN event. I havent been to something like that in ages but seeing new products, foods, vendors, whatever kind of trade show it is from food to running gear, they are always so energizing!

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Stephanie

Looks great!! I’ve never been to a Health food show, but it indeed sounds fun (especially the part you can have samples and such.) I’m really glad that many of unique health-food products are being available in Canada. I mean, even greek yogurt. Before there was like none. Now there’s Liberte, Oikos, PC, etc. !
Have a great week!

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Gwen @SimplyHealthyFamily

Sounds like a fun Sunday. It’s usually a contradiction in terms when health foods are packaged and made ‘convenient’. It usually means that nutrients have been lost and artificial ingredients have been added.

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Jenny (Fit Girl Foodie)

So many goodies!! Everything looks great :)

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Kathryn

Hey Leanne,
did you happen to ask if they offer those bars a the Airdrie Nutters? i think i saw her in there a couple of weeks ago but i was in a rush so it didnt stop to sample but ive been thinking about them since then but i couldnt remember what they looked like. next time im there ill keep your photos in mind so i can try to find them. thanks for the post, sounds fun and yesterday was so incredibly inspiring i really took your post to heart. Normally i’m not someone to post comments on sites but i just wanted to thank you for the inspiring fellings you shared yesterday. I hope you continue to explore the human experience as i am trying to do as best i can as well. Much love to all.

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Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

Hi Kathryn – I didn’t ask and wish I had! I sent them off an email today and will ask for a list of places we can find their products as I’ve been asked a couple of times for one. I’ll send you an email with my findings. Thanks for your comments about the post, I’m happy that you could find something in there for yourself :)

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Frugal Jen | Frugal, Freebies and Deals

the graham crackers are really good. and SO tiny…. ;)

jenetta

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Jessi@slotheatz

Lucky girl!! I wanted to hit this up sooooo bad – stupid work. My mom went though, and she brought home some pretty cool swag I have to say, but none of those bars! I’m gonna have to have a serious talk with her haha, those look amaaaazing.

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katie @KatieDid

Those graham crackers sound delicious! What a fu day and way to mix routine up.

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Andrea

That sounds like such a fun type of event! I’ll have to keep my eye out for something like that near me. Those bars sound awesome. I see she loaded you up with the coconut, yummmm!

The weather has been crazy nice here so some long hikes were had this past weekend. :) Hope you’re enjoying some great weather too!

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Mikelle

What a fun event! You look so happy in the pictures :) Yay for health shows (and food!!). Love the viabar display – will definitely check them out if they ever meander down to Arizona.

This weekend I played in the snow with my very joyful dog. We don’t get to see snow to often here in the desert! It was a blast.

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Kathy

That sounds like an awesome way to spend a Sunday! Mine was just pretty much a lazy day. I did teenager stuff, hehe~
The event sounded great; I wonder if my town has something like that anytime soon?

http://milk-and-tea.blogspot.com

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Lou

Those locally made bars sound AWESOME… love discovering new products, espcecially if you can meet the creator in person, perfect!

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Pam Woodall

Hi, just wanted to give you the list of places that carry Viabars (my store in Nanton, Because I Said So, is one of them.) Hope this isn’t too long for a comment., but I bet you can delete it if you prefer not to have it on here. This is a fabulous product, give them a try!
Amaranth Whole Foods Markets; Because I Said So, Nanton; Blush Lane Organic Market, Aspen Woods and Calgary Farmers Market; Colossi’s Coffee, High River; Community Natural Foods: Chinook, Downtown and Kingsland Farmers Market; Esquires Coffee House, Lethbridge; Extreme Bean on the Bow River, Calgary; Gluten-Free Marketplace, Calgary; Golden Sun Health Foods, Red Deer; Healthy Foods & More, Waterloo, Ont.; Higher Ground, Kensington, Calgary; Highwood Natural Foods, High River; Kawa Coffee & Wine Bar, Calgary; Market 17, Calgary; Naturistas, Lethbridge
Nutters, Airdrie; Nutters, Camrose; Nutters, Canmore; Nutters, Jasper; Nutters, Lloydminster
Nutters, Medicine Hat; Nutters, Olds; Nutters, Okotoks; Nutters, Red Deer; Nutters, Wetaskiwin
Okotoks Natural Foods, Okotoks; Oliver Health Foods, Lethbridge; Planet Organic, all Alberta stores
Rainbow Esso, High River; Save On Foods, Hampton Market, Edmonton; Save On Foods, Fort MacMurray; Save On Foods, Magrath, Edmonton; Save On Foods, Spruce Grove; Save On Foods, Grande Prairie; Save On Foods, West Lethbridge; Save On Foods, Baseline Rd, Sherwood Park
Sobeys, High River; Soul Hot Yoga, Calgary; Sunterra, Bankers Hall, Calgary; Sunterra, Brittania, Calgary; Sunterra, Gulf Canada Square, Calgary; Sunterra, Keynote, Downtown Calgary
Sunterra, Lendrum, Edmonton; Sunterra, WestJet, Calgary; Sunterra, West Market, Calgary
Sunterra, TransCanada Tower, Calgary; Tourism Red Deer, Q.E.II Highway N

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Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

Thank you, Pam! This is so fabulous!

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Jade

Thanks for mentioning us Leanne – it was a pleasure meeting you at the show! Love the blog – it is inspiring me to get going on another entry ;)

Jade aka Eve2 :)

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Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

Thanks for stopping by, Jade! I hear you’re going to be at the Women’s Show, too? I’ll be there and will be sure to stop by and say hello :)

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