Costco Commercial Fold-in-Half Table: Product Review

I usually write reviews of products I eat from Costco; I guess those are generally more appealing to me, but my circumstances have changed in the last few weeks, and I found myself in need of a temporary desk. I thought, why not try the commercial Fold-in-half table from Costco?

I’ve seen those tables everywhere, but I’ve never had the occasion to use one. Here’s my chance!

Costco Fold-in-half Table, 6 ft

First things first: the fold-in-half table costs $57.99, plus taxes, in Canadian dollars, and is unfortunately made in China, but what isn’t these days. The dimensions are 72 inches long, 30 inches wide and 29.25 inches high. In my case, the table is long enough for my computer, a desktop, my two monitors, and my mouse and keyboard. For reference, the Costco (Canada) item number is 277974.

For those that need to carry this around, for exhibitions, booths, presentations or whatever, the folding mechanism is easy to use and convenient, and the legs fold easily where they are supposed to. The legs come with a ring to secure them when they are deployed so that the table cannot collapse unannounced.

When it comes to actual load, I would not want to hazard a guess as to how much this folding table will hold, but loaded as it is, with a computer, monitor, et cetera, it’s not even breaking a sweat. I know that I could put much heavier things on it, no problem.

One thing that is a bit annoying is the weight; the table, folded, weighs in at 33 pounds. That is not crazy heavy, but it’s certainly not light. Despite the fact that is has a convenient carrying handle, I would not want to have to lug this around all day, it’s quite bulky and heavy.

Costco Fold-in-half Table, 6 ft, deployed
My living room is going to feel crowded.

All in all, I have to say that the table feels solid and well built, and for about $65, everything included, that is hard to beat. Buying the wood and metal legs separately would have cost at least this much, I would have needed to assemble it and the result would not have been half as nice.

Costco Fold-in-half Table, 6 ft used as temporary desk

As you can see, the commercial fold-in-half table from Costco will work just fine as a temporary desk. I look forward to moving to my office in the basement and using this table as a packing table, which will ultimately be its destiny. For reference, the exact same table is sold at Home Depot (Canada) for $149, plus taxes. If you decide that you need this table, it’s totally worth it to become a Costco member just for that; it’s cheaper than buying it elsewhere!

Siwin Asian Chicken Dumplings Potstickers at Costco: Product Review

As readers of this blog know, I’m a big sucker for things that come from Costco. You always get the best value, and that’s what I’m all about. Today I’m going to write about Siwin Asian Chicken and Vegetable Dumplings Potstickers, which I purchase at Costco in a suitably enormous bag.

Siwin Asian Chicken and Vegetable Dumplings
That’s a lot of dough.

Now, the basics. These Asian potstickers are available at Costco in 1.91 kilogram bags, about 4 pounds. Regular price was $12.99 Canadian dollars, and there was an instant savings of $3 per bag, so of course I got two. It drives my wife nuts, and Costco’s stock price ever higher. For those who are interested, the Costco item number is 5502859 (in Canada, anyways). There are roughly 84 potstickers in each bag, entirely cooked before being frozen. Possible allergens are sesame, soy and wheat. These are NOT gluten free.

Siwin Asian Chicken Dumplings Ingredients

One of the things I appreciate from many of these kind of things (from Costco, anyways) is that the ingredients are more or less wholesome. Nothing weird or unpronounceable, and these potstickers are no exceptions. Here we go, in order of appearance:

Filling:

  • Chicken, Cabbage, Water, Green Onion, Canola Oil, Sugar, Yeast Extract, Salt, Spices, Sesame Oil

Wrapper:

  • Wheat flour, Water, Canola Oil, Salt, Sugar

Sauce:

  • Soy Sauce, Sugar, Water, Vinegar, Sesame Oil
Siwin Asian Chicken and Vegetable Dumplings Ingredients

Siwin Asian Chicken Dumplings Nutrition Facts

As you can expect from this type of prepared food, it’s really the sodium that’s a kicker here. One portion of potstickers, with one portion of the supplied sauce, will give you a whopping 39% of your daily sodium, and I can guarantee you that you’ll still be hungry! I usually skip the sauce, the dumplings are tasty as is.

Siwin Asian Chicken and Vegetable Dumplings Nutrition Facts
Easy on the salt, there, cowboy.

Siwin Asian Chicken Dumplings Cooking Instructions

Cooking these dumplings is really super easy. A steamer would be nice, but you can make do with a simple non-stick pan and a tablespoon of vegetable oil. Turn the heat up to medium-high, dump a bunch of dumplings in the pan, and add about 1/2 a cup of water.

Siwin Asian Chicken and Vegetable Dumplings Cooking
Takes only about 5-6 minutes, total.

Bring the water to a boil, and cover for 3 minutes. Afterwards, simply remove the cover, let the remaining water evaporate and fry them a little, until you get a light crust. Remove from the pan and eat up!

The Siwin Asian Chicken and Vegetable Dumplings Potstickers I purchase at Costco are always a hit with the kids. They only take a few minutes to cook, so they are ideal when you’re running out of time and need to make something RIGHT NOW because the kids are hungry and they will DIE OF HUNGER if they don’t eat RIGHT THIS SECOND. With lots of crying and whining.

Even when purchased at full price, this is a really good product that’s quick and easy to make, and for something that comes frozen in a bag, doesn’t contain horrible ingredients and that is not too bad for you, provided you don’t eat the whole bag in one sitting. Bon appétit!

Marinade Bay Teriyaki Sauce at Costco: Product Review

Besides saving money and decluttering my home, one of the things I most enjoy doing is writing product reviews for things I purchase. I’ve already spent the money, so everyone might as well share in the knowledge! Today I will be writing a review for the Marinade Bay Teriyaki Sauce I purchased at Costco a few weeks ago, before the Ice Storm. I just got around to finally using it, and as planned I make Teriyaki chicken.

Marinade Bay Teriyaki Sauce from Costco
Marinade Bay Teriyaki Sauce from Costco, 970 ml, $6.49

Marinade Bay Teriyaki Sauce: First Impression

First, the basics. This sauce is sold in a 970 ml bottle, so almost a full liter, for $6.49 Canadian dollars, at Costco. The sauce is made in the USA and I purchased it at a Costco in the Montreal, Canada area. At first glance, this is a really good price for a marinade sauce, because you don’t really need that much when you cook. For just a few dollars, I can enjoy Teriyaki Chicken all summer!

But will I, though? Here’s the kicker: I found the sauce to be a bit thick for a marinade. Probably good when you add it at the end of cooking, cooking a bunch of chicken soaked in the stuff made for a challenging experience, even though the result was satisfactory in terms of taste.

Turns out that the sauce thickened A LOT during cooking, and I didn’t want boiled chicken, so I had to drain the sauce several times. I almost certainly would have been better off grilling the chicken first, then adding a BIT of sauce at the end, for flavor. Marinading was not required, I think.

Marine Bay Teriyaki Sauce Ingredients

Marinade Bay Teriyaki Sauce Ingredients

Looking at the ingredients, we can tell that the Marinade Bay people take their products seriously. There is not a single unpronounceable ingredient in there, and while I’m pretty certain that the various vinegars act as conservation agents, there is nothing artificial in here. Moreover, several of the ingredients are organic, which is great. The product itself is not labelled as such, as all the ingredients are not organically sourced, but still, a long way in the right direction, and kudos to them.

Marinade Bay Teriyaki Sauce Nutrition Facts

Marinade Bay Teriyaki Sauce Nutrition Facts

Considering the ingredients list, I’m pretty surprised at how not unhealthy this sauce actually is. I mean, sugar is the third ingredient and concentrated pineapple juice is the fourth, and these are pretty sweet, so I would have expected much more calories per portion.

Granted, the portion size is a single tablespoon, but still.

An area of concern here would be the salt content, 220 mg or 9% of your daily allowance, but with this type of sauce, it is to be expected, both really sweet and really salty at the same time. The good news here is that there is no fat and no cholesterol, which is awesome.

In Conclusion: Marinade Bay Teriyaki Sauce at Costco

I look forward to trying out this sauce as a cooking sauce and not a marinade. I was fooled by the name of the company, Marinade Bay, and I was not too pleased at the result. Moreover, I’m used to the teriyaki sauce in restaurants having a different texture, so perhaps I was biased here.

A few things are certain: the price point of the Marinade Bay Teriyaki Sauce from Costco, at a mere $0.66 per 100 ml, is right on target. The natural, and sometimes organic ingredients are a plus, and all in all, the taste was very acceptable.

I will update this review once I have used the sauce again under different circumstances.

Now the question is, will this sauce become a staple of Costco, or is it destined to be one of those sauces they have a pallet of, sell and then is never seen again? Only time (and sales) will tell!

One-Month Clutter Challenge: Day One

As readers of this blog will know, I sell on eBay and Kijiji as well as other platforms items I already own, in order to clear the clutter and pay the mortgage, at the same time. Both are good for my wife and I’s sanity and peace of mind. We find the amount of stuff that we have accumulated throughout the years to weigh tremendously, not only physically cluttering our home but also mentally.

For the month of April, we are determined to kick it up a notch not only by selling unwanted goods, but also by pledging not to purchase anything that is not food or gas for the car, and that, for the entire month. This means we can do groceries, even in bulk at Costco, but we’re not buying anything we cannot eat. If I run out of body wash, I will finally have to use the small bars of soap I’ve pilfered from hotel rooms 10 years ago!

The goal here is start making a dent on the volume of our physical belongings, which can be overwhelming, and that’s not even counting the warehouse. With nothing coming in for a month and stuff going out, hopefully at an accelerated pace, we should be able to see a visible difference!

This will be tougher than it looks. We are conditioned and encouraged to purchase AT EVERY TURN.

We picked the month of April because no one in the immediate family has a birthday, so no gifts to buy and no parties to attend, and Christmas expenses from last year are all taken care of.

Every few days I’ll be posting an update here about how we are doing, how much money we spend and on what. There could be exceptions, of course. For example, we will buy medication if so required, as well as hygiene products if such are needed, but we shop at Costco, so we should be pretty set already.

Can you take the One-Month Clutter Challenge as well? Let me know in the comments below what you think of my project, and you’d be game to try. I’ll be sharing some exact numbers in the days ahead.

4 Easy Ways to Save Like Crazy at Costco

At The Lively Dollar, we LOVE Costco! There’s everything we need, and the value is always incredible. Here are a few tips to help you save a little bit more. These are techniques that we use every week, and there is nothing sneaky about them, Costco actually WANTS you to take advantage of these. You’ll be happy, because you save more, and so will Costco, because you’ll be in the store more often!

Use your Executive Coupons

One of the easiest ways to save at Costco without racking your brains is to use your Executive coupons! Unlike the coupons you receive at the door from the friendly people in red vests that greet you, Executive coupons are received at home, and must be presented to the cashier in order to receive the savings. They are only for Executive Members! If you do not have the Executive level membership, just upgrade – it costs more, but you can save tons just on the coupons, way more that the actual cost of the membership.

Some coupon booklets are sponsored by Procter & Gamble. These guys make everything we use, so it’s real easy to save – think toothpaste, deodorant, laundry detergent, et cetera. Others are sponsored by Kirkland Signature (Costco’s house brand) so you can get everything from frozen beef patties to coffee and more.

Buy Costco Gas

Buying gas at Costco is an easy to pay for your membership, and more, even without setting foot in the warehouse! Let’s say you buy 50 liters of gas a week, at an average savings of 5 cents a liter; you would save $130 a year. Doesn’t look like much, but you’ve just paid for your Executive membership at Costco! If you have the regular Gold Star membership, you’ve put $70 in your pocket! Try to time your gas fill-ups with your Costco runs so that you don’t waste time or fuel.

Buy Weekly Specials in Bulk

Except under very special circumstances, there are no buying limits at Costco. There is no “Limit per Customer’. Feel free to buy the whole pallet if you want! That’s why you should always stock up on regular specials – the ones that they hand at the door when you walk in. If you plan and purchase judiciously, you can make it so that items on special are the only ones you buy! You could cut 10% to 25% off of your bill every time, and that’s nothing to sneeze at!

Shop for Discounted and Clearance Items

Did you ever notice items that are priced ending in .97? Those are clearance items. Assuming that it’s something you would have bought anyways, you can safely stock up on these. Costco is clearing them out to make room for something else, and they are priced to move. We’ve seen savings of up to 90% on those, so know your stock, and your prices, and you can really save big!

In Conclusion

These are four ways to save on each and every one of your Costco runs. Do you have a favorite way to save at Costco? Tell us in the comments below!