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Local Shopping Made Easy

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When looking to support locally produced or sourced products it can be a bit of a daunting task.  I can almost guarantee that if asked each one of you would LOVE to support more local businesses but cost and convenience would be factors that may lead you astray. This is something I know all too well as I made a commitment at the beginning of this year to support as much locally produced food products as I could. 

With a constant eye for business opportunities and growth I decided to turn one of my rental properties into a Saskatchewan experience on the short term rental site - Airbnb. The rental market was taking a massive hit and I thought I would use this as an opportunity to change things up and test these new waters. I love marketing so I created a vision board - on that vision board I asked myself what would set me apart and tell a story.  My Airbnb story would be exposing my guests to as much local goodness as I could. From the art on the walls to the soaps in the shower. Recommendations to locally owned restaurants and directions to our local farmer's market - complete with my fav things to do. Now a plan was in place but how to source all of this? Common grocery stores have few selections of Saskatchewan products and the convenience of trying to get to the farmers market just wasn't happening with a busy schedule. I knew where I had to go.....Sask Made Marketplace.

Road Coffee Co . and  Rock Paper Coffee Roasting Company  are always ready for brewing.

Road Coffee Co. and Rock Paper Coffee Roasting Company are always ready for brewing.

Everything was all there in one spot. It was perfect - I was able to decorate the walls with framed post cards from local photographers and artists. The coffee beans and teas that I provide complimentary to my guests are all local entrepreneurs. Even a collection of local cooking oils, jams, and an assortment of other treats are left for the guests to try. 

Three Farmer's,   Over the Hill , and  M&M Garlic  are ready for guests to experience. #local

Three Farmer's, Over the Hill, and M&M Garlic are ready for guests to experience. #local

Not only does Sask Made Marketplace have all the items that complete my local experience they are very knowledgeable about each of the companies they support. With freezers filled with local meats, perogies, and pizzas it truly is a one stop shop. The stores hours make it convenient to shop at and there is always something new being sampled. I'm a few months into this new venture and the guests adore these little local touches and I adore the convenience of going to one place. Match made in local heaven ;)

We sat down with Amanda from Sask Made and wanted to learn more about the business, their goals for 2018, and what we can expect to see at their booth in a few weeks at the Modern Woman Show. I see big things for this company! These women are certainly making a #supportlocal difference in our city.

Tell us about your business?

The SaskMade Marketplace is a Saskatchewan company partnered with local farmers, processors, and artisans to provide a wide range of unique, locally produced gourmet ingredients, grocery items, giftware, souvenirs, and gift baskets.

How did you get started?

The business was started as a medium to educate people about farm to fork and what it really means to support local. We wanted to become the local authority on food, which I think we have.

What inspires you?

Challenge and Change. I always want to be challenging myself and learning. Life is an opportunity to continuously grow and experience new things - I love that! 

What is your idea of a Modern Woman?

A Modern Woman isn't afraid to be who she is or do what she loves, nor does she pass judgment on other women. We need to support each other and understand that we are all going to make different decisions and take different paths in life; none of them are wrong. If you want to be a career woman, be a career woman. If you want to be a stay at home mom, good for you. No judgement. "Whatever makes you happy" is my motto.

What tips can you give to aspiring women entrepreneurs?

Women are stronger when they support each other so get to know other women entrepreneurs in your area. Join local industry and women-in-business groups.  In these organizations you will always find good advice and guidance when you need it. There are many people who have gone before you, so learn from them!

Also, never be afraid to ask questions or make mistakes. Two little pieces of advice we often give our friends and family but can sometimes forget to do for ourselves.

What is one piece of advice you would give yourself looking back?

It would be to trust yourself and do not hold back. If you want do something, do it now!

What is in the future for your business?

This year we are hoping to bring in some unique kitchenware, cookware and entertaining items to compliment our vast selection of gourmet groceries.  But we are always on the lookout for new grocery products and gift ideas to change things up!

As for a 2-5 year goal, we'd like to have a second location or expand our current store and add a complimentary space, like a cafe or bistro.

Who is someone that you find is a role model for women in business?

A particular person doesn't come to mind, but I respect any women who are out there changing the world and breaking down barriers. For example women in science and technology or agriculture, which are largely male dominated industries. It's hard work and not everyone can do it.

Tell us about you – what makes you tick, what are your hobbies, where would we find you on a Wednesday night? A Friday night?

Well I have 2.5 year old twin girls, so Wednesday evenings would find me at home hanging out with my family or maybe squeezing in a quick workout once the kids have gone to bed.

Friday's are a bit more exciting; I'm usually cooking dinner with my husband with a glass of wine or having friends over for appetizers and drinks. I love cooking, eating and drinking so anything that involves those makes me a happy lady.

If you could have any super power what would it be?

I would have the same super power as Magneto from X-Men. The ability to control metal would be amazing!

What will you be showcasing at the Modern Woman Show?

We will be showcasing all the wonderful food items that our local farmers grow and produce for us. I want to focus on some of the great gourmet cooking ingredients like oils , vinegars, mustards and sauces that anyone can easily use to create an amazing meal at home.

We will also have two of our vendors sampling with us, one each day. So make sure you stop by for a few samples!

Sask Made Marketplace can be found online www.saskmade.ca and shopping made easy at 1621 8th Street East. Come visit their booth and start your local journey with Sask Made at the Modern Woman Show & Expo on April 14th & 15th at Prairieland Park. 

To check out the little local airbnb and all the lovely companies we support visit our Instagram Page @stay_at_cas_hill 

Chantal

Botox and Big Lips....de-bunking the myths.

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The Midwest Laser Centre has been on the forefront of non-invasive cosmetic procedures for over 30 years. We thought it would be great to de-bunk some of the greatest myths in the cosmetic industry and common misconceptions that we get asked on a regular basis.

The most popular misconception we hear at Midwest is “Botox is going to make my lips big”. The name Botox is very popular, it has been spotlighted as a go-to treatment of the Hollywood elite. Botox is simply a neuromodulator. What does that mean? Muscle relaxant. It is injected into a muscle to diminish the movement for an average period of 3-4 months. Areas that are most commonly treated are the forehead lines (horizontal and the little vertical frown lines), crow’s feet, bunny lines (scrunch your nose up), and can be put in the upper lip and chin to help correct those movement lines. Botox is often confused with dermal filler which is placed in the lip area to create fuller lips. Botox is not the only neuromodulator on the market. There are several brands that are Health Canada and FDA approved, at Midwest we also use Dysport.

Other key things to know about Botox & Dysport:

1)      You will not make your wrinkles worse by trying it once. Your body metabolizes in over the 4 months period and your muscle movement to the area will return.

2)      It starts to work around day 2-3 but can take up to 2 weeks to see the full effect in the area treated. First, you will notice it is harder to make the muscle move and then over time the lines will start to fade.

3)      You are not injecting botulism or food poisoning into your body. Yes, it is a purified protein from the botulism toxin but it is very well studied and its effects are temporary and controlled to the injection area.

4)      Cost of Botox or Dysport varies between clinics but is still considered to be an affordable cosmetic procedure. We suggest making sure your injections are done by a certified physician or RN. An average forehead treatment for a female at Midwest Laser runs at approximately $250-450 (we charge $10/unit plus GST).

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Dermal fillers are used in the very popular lip augmentation and have also seen their fair share of bad publicity. Usually this is due to too much product in an area. I like to call that the “cat” look. Filler is a gel like substance that is injected into an area that has a crease or loss of volume. Think of putty under the skin. Most commonly injected in the lip lines and around the mouth (marionette lines, and nasolabial lines), and used to restore the cheek volume to create an overall lift. Filler is made with absorbable materials and hyaluronic acid being one of the most popular. This is already found in our body which makes it rare to react to and it bonds and smooths into our skin better than some of the other material options.

Some tips and facts on dermal fillers:

1)      Not all fillers are born alike. Within each family or brand of fillers you will have different consistencies. Your certified and experienced injector will know what filler is best for what areas and will be able to tell you the average length it will last.

2)      Fillers are not super painful. There is an initial needle poke but most fillers come with built in lidocaine (freezing). The lip area has been known to be more sensitive due to the amount of nerves.

3)      Swelling is common. Depending where the injections are placed it is quite common to get some swelling to the area and there is always a chance of some bruising. We suggest not doing this treatment right before a big event – give yourself a few weeks to let everything settle if you want to keep it a secret. If you do get some bruising you can use concealer and foundation to cover it up as it heals.

4)      Filler can last between 3 months and 18 months or more. There are some great fillers on the market that move with your facial expressions making the look very natural. The newer fillers are so natural looking that most people will only look at you wondering what is different but won’t be able to pinpoint it. Filler is charged by the syringe at Midwest Laser Centre and can range from $500-650.

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The best thing to do if you have questions about these services is to come in for a consultation. Fillers and neuromodulators are great tools without being a permanent change. This is great when you’re unsure or new to this industry. Most clinics will also offer non-invasive skin tightening procedures that use heat to contract collagen and give a natural lift. Not everyone is comfortable with needles so it is good to know that there are other options out there and quite often a combination of both injectables and skin tightening procedures will give the most natural result.

People will ask me, if you had to pick one thing at your clinic to do what would it be…. I find this hard because over the last 10 years I have had different things to treat. When I started I was in my early 20s I treated the acne I had been struggling with as well as laser hair removal. A good skin care regime was started which is very important. Cleanse, exfoliate, hydrate, and protect with SPF.

As the years went by I started getting Botox/Dysport for my horizontal lines that were starting to appear – at first maybe once or twice a year and now into my mid-thirties I treat the lines every 4 months. I see the benefit in skin tightening treatments like Thermage or Fotona 3D to keep a youthful firmness to the skin. Fillers are great for those who have started the anti-aging treatments a bit later and want more of an instant improvement. Lip augmentation is very popular and I have been known to come home with the perfect pout. For those that have sun damage and redness to the skin my suggestion is a series of IPL treatments. If you have texture/scarring issues then laser peels are the best bang for your buck (don’t worry they aren’t as bad as they sound) and will work wonders to even skin tone and smooth the skin. There are many more options which is why it is always best to have an assessment. Get a feel for the clinic and don’t ever be afraid to ask lots of questions.

Midwest Laser is a Gold Sponsor of the Modern Woman Show & Exhibition. Come join us in April at Prairieland Park to learn more about our services and products. We have a fabulous new facility in Stonebridge and look forward to meeting you.

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A thank you to Realty Executives

The Modern Woman Show & Expo proudly presented by Realty Executives Saskatoon is a hub for the discerning palate - those with a hunger for food, travel, fashion & beauty. Together with our sponsors we have created a space for entrepreneurs to share their passions, and to be the breeding ground for ideas & excitement - - for an inspired lifestyle. On Saturday April 22nd & Sunday April 23rd join us at Prairieland Park for most anticipated women’s event of the year. 

This event is proud to be behind a mission that empowers women to make their voices stronger, their influence bolder, and their support of one another unsurpassable. Without the support of Realty Executives Saskatoon this event would not be possible. We thank all the agents, support staff, and broker - Wayne Zuk, for their support and encouragement over the last three years. Here is a look at a few of the many agents who work not only for your real estate needs but for our community. 

Myra Kirk

Realtor, Realty Executives Saskatoon

TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF? I am a real estate professional for Saskatoon and surrounding area and I am licensed in residential, acreages, and farmland.  I have purchased many homes and became interested in the industry to be able to help others make an informed decision. As an agent, I enjoy helping people, seeing them happy and being a part of their journey.  

WHAT IS A MODERN WOMAN TO YOU? A modern woman is someone that is confident in themselves and respectful of the abilities and contributions of others.

ADVICE FOR WOMEN IN BUSINESS? Trust your instincts and do research. Seek out the advice of others that have been down the same road. Get a feel for the venture you want to embark on before jumping in with both feet.

DO YOU THINK IT IS IMPORTANT TO HAVE A MENTOR? A mentor is absolutely valuable. At Realty Executives, there are some very helpful peers. It is always great to get advice and hear about other situations that have transpired. The learning never ends.  


Alisa Skalicky

Realty Executives Saskatoon

HOW DID YOU GET STARTED? My business has been derived from word of mouth and referrals. I have worked hard to network and put the needs of all my clients first and foremost. I also am keenly interested in the development of our real estate community and how women are perceived in our industry.  There is a vast opportunity for a strong leadership with women entrepreneurs in the industry.

TELL US ABOUT YOUR JOURNEY AS AN ENTREPRENEUR? A life event that put me in the position of being a young widow with young children forced me to reinvent myself and I saw an opportunity with real estate to be self employed and work from home. One thing is constant and that is change. We either embrace it or succumb to it and it can be a positive and reawakening decisive decision. For me it was the best thing I could have done for myself and my children and I have no regrets.

WHO IS A MODERN WOMAN IN YOUR EYES? My idea of a Modern Woman is an adaptable, courageous, accepting, driven female who is proactive in changing the landscape of global perception.

DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVICE FOR FUTURE WOMEN ENTREPRENEURS? My tips are don't second guess your intuition and don't be afraid to stand up for what you believe in. Strive forward with conviction!

DO YOU HAVE A MENTOR? The most important role model in my life is my Grandma, she exemplified a life of humbleness, love and forgiveness and was one of the most well respected hard working women in our province.

WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON WOMEN IN BUSINESS IN OUR COMMUNITY? I feel that the business community and female entrepreneurs in Saskatoon is a strong partnership that has blossomed immensely. I personally cannot wait to see what the beautiful and brilliant women of Saskatoon will deliver!


Nora Jacobs

Realtor, Realty Executives Saskatoon

TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF? I am a Realtor with Realty Executives Saskatoon.  Seven years ago I decided to leave my senior management position with Saskatchewan Housing Authority as an Area Manager and to begin a new career path in Real Estate.  In the late 1980’s I began working as a Property Manager in private industry and quickly rose through the ranks and became the General Manager/Broker of my firm.  I worked in this industry for 10 years, then due to corporate changes I accepted a position with Saskatchewan District Health managing a large staff for 3 years and then moved over to Saskatchewan Housing Corporation for 12 years.  During that time, I always had the desire to work for myself and Real Estate was a natural choice.  The hard decision was to leave a paid position with benefits and pension to pursue my dreams.  6 years ago, I took the plunge and have never looked back. Working on my own with a powerful brokerage behind me is exactly where I had hoped to be, and the move has been very positive and fulfilling.  Now, when I work long hours – I work for myself.  The goals & achievements are mine to make.

HOW DID YOU GET STARTED? Getting started was the most difficult journey I have ever taken.  Educated, all dressed up and nowhere to go.  It was humbling the first year, however it made me stronger & more determined to succeed.

HOW ARE YOU INSPIRED? My inspiration comes from achieving my goals and doing what makes me happy.  I found through the years that this is a very busy, often stressful and yet exciting industry, that if you let it, can consume you.  I soon found myself putting my work before everything else, not allowing myself to take part in the things I love.  My social interaction other than through work was becoming less and less.  Three years ago, I accepted an appointment as a Marriage Commissioner which was something I always wanted to do.  It is a position that forces you to dress up, take care of yourself and perform publicly.  It is a position that surrounds me with people, happy days & beauty.  This is just the mix I needed with my Real Estate Career.  The two go so well together and shape me into who I have become today.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE A MODERN WOMAN? To me, a Modern Woman is one who puts herself first.  Takes care of herself, works hard to achieve her goals and is driven & motivated.  If you can shape yourself into a person you respect & love, you will have so much more to give people.  Working hard is great as nothing comes without persistence & determination.  However never forgetting what is important – family, relationships, friends, home, & self.  You have to develop a full package or everything else fails.

WHAT ADVICE OR TIPS DO YOU HAVE FOR WOMEN IN BUSINESS? My advice to women considering working for themselves is to know what you’re good at, and develop those skills further.  Set a written business plan with goals and action plans.  Monitor your plan daily, weekly and monthly.  Don’t look at setbacks as failures.  Learn from each mistake and move forward.  Keep doing what you’re doing.  Always have various avenues to grow your business.  Don’t do the same thing all the time.  Do many things all of the time.  And lastly, give yourself time.  You can’t build success in a day.  It takes months, years and sometimes a lifetime.

WHAT IS IN YOUR FUTURE? Realty Executives Saskatoon is growing every year.   We have strong leadership, excellent training for new Executives and ongoing training and support for everyone in the brokerage.  It is the only Brokerage I would consider working in.  There is no doubt that we will continue to grow and achieve numbers we have not yet imagined.  I see Realty Executives as the #1 choice of the people of Saskatoon and Saskatchewan for years to come.

WHO INSPIRES YOU? I can’t name one particular woman.  I admire women who are successful while juggling family, small children, homes, jobs, and still seem to find time to be involved in community and events.  It takes incredible energy and determination to make it all work as a woman so I have nothing but admiration for successful women who are doing it all.


 

April Townsend

Realtor, Realty Executives Saskatoon

HOW DID YOU GET STARTED? I got started in this industry 17 years ago. I had been a business owner in Winnipeg for a number of years and decided that I needed a change both with work and my city. I relocated to Saskatoon in 1998 and decided that I would give it a shot here. I had researched all of my necessary requirements before heading to Saskatoon to take my exams for licensing. I became licensed in 1999 and never looked back.

WHAT IS YOUR IDEA OF A MODERN WOMAN? My idea of a Modern Woman is someone who is not afraid to take charge, doesn’t feel the need to back down to stand strong to make their voice heard, knows that with knowledge it does not matter what sex you are, you can do the job!

WHAT IS YOUR ADVICE FOR ASPIRING ENTREPRENEURS? My advice would be: be bold and assertive when needed, and taking chances leads to great things. Follow what is in your heart and things will all fall together.

WHO IS A ROLE MODEL FOR YOU? My role model for women in business is Venus Williams. This women stands strong each and every day. She has bounced back from major health issues, is still a force on the tennis circuit today and continues to own her own clothing business to which she designs all of the items as well.

DO YOU BELIEVE IN HAVING A MENTOR? Having a mentor in this industry is positive at any stage of the game. It is a necessary way to succeed in the beginning but it is also a positive reinforcement as time goes on. There are always ways that we can become better each and every day . Our broker Wayne is a huge part of many of our Realtors success stories.  

DO YOU THINK SASKATOON HAS A STRONG SENSE OF COMMUNITY WITHIN WOMEN IN BUSINESS? I definitely feel a strong sense of community with women and female entrepreneurs in Saskatoon and our province. It is nice to see the support that women have for one another and the amount of women that are there to showcase their trials and tribulations to show other women that , “yes it can be done, so don’t give up”.


Make sure to stop by the Realty Executives booth for a quick chat and a complimentary coffee all weekend long! 

Modern Woman Show & Expo

Saturday April 22nd 11:00 a.m. - 10:00 p.m.

Sunday April 23rd 11:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Prairieland Park 

 

The Fabulously Unfit Girl's Guide To Health & Wellness: don't you put it in your mouth

Hey homies! For this post I teamed up with my pal Kalli Youngstrom of KY Fitness & Nutrition to chat about bullsh*t marketing when it comes to "healthy" foods. This is something that really cheezes me off, and I'm thrilled to be able to colloborate with Kalli to bring some awareness to some of the crap that is lurking on your grocery store shelves. Kalli is a Certified Personal Trainer, Weight Management Specialist, Nutritionist, and IFBB Pro. I, on the other hand, have absolutely no business telling you about what to eat and what not to eat, but I'm going to anyway. So listen up. 

How many times have you been wandering through the aisles, reading labels (like you've been told to) and chosen things because you can immediately recall the ad telling you the product is a healthy choice, or because that product has a bunch of things on the package that say "Trans Fat Free!", "High In Fiber!", "A Good Source Of Vitamin C!", or my personal fav... "GLUTEN FREE!" Contrary to what these claims would have you believe, you shouldn't necessarily shove these products in your piehole.

Everyone is trying to make good choices for themselves and their families, but its super hard when companies create ad campaigns for products that primarily serve to increase the buckaroos in their bank account, rather the health of their customers. 

OK...we all know sugar is the devil incarnate. This is not news. Too much sugar can cause all kinds of greebly sh*t to shake down in your body, and things will likely be bad news bears in the long run. 

What people don't realize is how MUCH sugar is in all these processed foods, along with the equivalent of Santa's naughty list of other crap lurking within. Kalli and I set out to comb the aisles for some of the worst offenders for brainwashing consumers. 

Activia Yogurt 

Kalli's Info: The marketing behind this product is to “Take the Activia challenge.” which is Activia twice a day for 2 weeks. I would recommend a non-sweetened alternative, which will provide you with the same (if not more) benefits in relation to gut health and help you steer clear of the 2 teaspoons of added sugar that is in each single serving yogurt. 2 yogurts a day = 4 teaspoons of sugar, not far from the recommended 6 maximum teaspoons by the American Heart Association. Opt for 2% plain Greek yogurt for more protein to keep you fuller longer. If you’re worried about added fiber top with flax or chia for fiber + healthy fat.

My 2 Cents: Activia challenge? Let me get this straight... they are challenging me to purchase enough product to eat their yogurt twice a day for two weeks? Clever. As much as I love being challenged to an eating dual, I'm gonna pass on this one. 

#thanksbutnothanks ... however, I do challenge you to try the "prune" flavour and not gag. 

#thanksbutnothanks ... however, I do challenge you to try the "prune" flavour and not gag. 

Light/Fat-Free Cool Whip

Kalli's Info: Marketed as a healthier alternative to traditional Cool Whip and whipped cream, the lack of dairy in this “whipped topping” is concerning. Not to mention the lack of almost any natural ingredients that are recognizable to the general consumer. Stick with whole foods that you and your body recognize. Indulge in some homemade whipping cream from time to time by whipping 33% cream with stevia and vanilla,  you’ll save on the added sugars and your body will thank you for avoiding the preservatives that keep this product “fresh for two weeks in the refrigerator.”

My 2 Cents: WTF is this stuff? I guarantee your great-granny wouldn't even be able to pronounce the things in this, let alone would have ever used them in her delicious cooking. This product is an awesome option for anyone looking to incorporate a variety of jacked up ingredients in their diet. 

Beef Jerky

Kalli's Info: A “healthy” grab and go as a quick and easy protein source, but with more sugar than protein in the majority of store bought jerky, the consumer may not be getting what they’re paying for. Double check the serving size as often the serving size in comparison to the package can be misleading. If you’re reaching for an easy protein filled snack for the road opt for a jerky with no sugar added, make your own at home, or opt for an alternative like hardboiled eggs or sugar free protein bars. 

My 2 Cents: Dagnabbit, I am guilty of believing this was a good grab and go. Fake news. Might as well dump some syrup on your steak. Find a friend who shops at Cabela's. They likely think making jerky is fun and you can get it from them. 

Vitamin Water

Kalli's Info: With the second ingredient listed being sugar, it’s no surprise that one bottle of this “vitamin enhanced” beverage comes in at 32 g of sugar. For comparison, a can of Coke comes in at 39. With no fat, fiber, or protein in this drink, one bottle of this will likely cause a quick spike in blood sugar leaving the customer hungry and tired soon after. Get your vitamins through whole foods that will keep you satisfied longer, naturally include the fiber you need for beneficial digestion, and if you need to supplement use a multi-vitamin without added sugar in it. 

My 2 Cents: Some assh*ole came up with a way to sell sugar water to people and make them think they are doing a big healthy. Genius... and horrible. Don't touch this. 

Yessss... I've always wanted a way to justify chugging Kool-aid as an adult!!

Yessss... I've always wanted a way to justify chugging Kool-aid as an adult!!

Coconut Oil Cooking Spray

Kalli's Info: Most would be surprised to see the bottle with the label “100% coconut oil” also includes isobutane and propane on the label. Although these are “normal” additives in cooking sprays, avoid the propane and use 100% cooking oil out of the jar, or search for a label that has only 1 ingredient, coconut oil. 

My 2 Cents: Save the propane for your BBQ and buy a non-stick pan. Good news! You can also just put some regular coconut oil in the pan if you want to. 

Fruit + Veggies Juice

Kalli's Info: Although there is no added sugar in the fruit and veggie juice on the grocery store shelf, a small serving of this juice contains 25 grams of sugar and only 2 grams of fiber. It’s recommended that you opt for whole fruits and veggies instead. The natural fiber that is in fruits and vegetables add many health benefits, along with keeping your hunger at bay. A fruit and veggie juice with no fiber is likely to have the opposite effect, quickly spiking your blood sugar and leaving you hungry soon after. 

My 2 Cents: An evil genius devised a way to market "healthy" sugar water to, what I would bet, primarily moms trying to feed their kids their more fruits and veggies. The worst kind of assh*le marketing. Boourns. 

Apparently "plus veggies" means inserting a picture of a carrot on every bottle... *eyeroll emoji*

Apparently "plus veggies" means inserting a picture of a carrot on every bottle... *eyeroll emoji*

Protein Bars

Kalli's Info: With more carbohydrates than protein in almost all of the bars on the normal grocery store shelf, many of these bars include as much added sugar as a chocolate bar and are better to be swapped for a sugar-free version. There are many options on the market, such as Quest bars, that include sugar free options... some even being naturally sweetened if you prefer to avoid artificial sweeteners. Read the label and ensure that you’re getting more protein than carbohydrate and steer clear of added sugars. 

My 2 Cents: Might as well buy a Snickers. 

Special K Nourish

Kalli's Info:  Marketed as “Simply good, no artificial flavors or colors.” and “A high source of fiber.” High is a relative term, with most people needing around 25-30 grams of fiber today, 4 grams of fiber per serving is a long way from a daily recommended intake. With 43 grams of carbs and about 7 different types of sugar listed in the ingredient list I would recommend starting your day with a more natural carbohydrate source that will keep you fuller longer and keep your blood sugar down. Remember when reading cereal boxes that the listed serving size is likely not what goes in your bowl. Try weighing out a serving v.s. eye balling it and see if you’re eating more than you really know.

My 2 Cents: This sh*t is the worst. "Nourish" yourself with a big ol' bowl of all the sugar in town. Except don't.

Because... quinoa. 

Because... quinoa. 

Green Goddess Juice

Kalli's Info: With a title and visual emphasis on green, its surprising to note that the first 4 types of juices included in this green juice are actually fruit juices, some of the fruits most naturally rich in sugar out there, such as pineapples, banana, and mango. Although there are beneficial vitamins and nutrients in the juice and more “green” ingredients listed towards the very end of the label, 250 calories and 50 g of sugar would be much more satiating and appetite suppressing in the form of whole foods. Get your greens in a salad or make your own green juice with greens being the main ingredient. 

My 2 Cents: 50g of liquid sugar does not a Goddess make. Big no nos. 

Olive Oil Mayonnaise

Kalli's Info: Although there is olive oil in the mayo, its not the only oil included. Avoid the added inflammatory oils and make your own mayo using whole eggs, olive or avocado oil, and lemon. Did you know that most mayos have sugar added as well? The second ingredient in this mayo is sugar. 

My 2 Cents: There are lots of surprises in this mystery goop. Olive oil is a good time, but this is not. 

Fiber One Bars

Kalli's Info: With sugar as the first ingredient and sugar listed in a variety of forms at least 8 times on these fiber focused bars I recommend getting your fiber from a better source. The beauty of whole natural foods is that they naturally include the fiber your body needs! We shouldn’t have to add fiber to our foods. 100 calories from your favorite fruits and veggies can add the 5 g of fiber that these bars do while avoiding the laundry list of sugars and unrecognizable ingredients. 

My 2 Cents: Might as well eat some oreos wash them down with a tiny bit of your grandpa's metuamucil. Sorry folks. 

Now BIGGER chocolate chips!!! #healthy

Now BIGGER chocolate chips!!! #healthy

So there you have it. The sad thing is, we could have gone on all day with this!! There is so much garbage out there geared toward getting you to spend your money on things that are supposed to benefit your health. IT'S NOT YOUR FAULT!! We rely on companies to provide accurate information to us, but unfortunately its rarely the case. Business is business, and business doesn't always have the consumer's best interest at heart. We've all been duped by marketing time and again. (I had a Slap Chop, how 'bout you??)

When I shop, with a few exceptions, I try to stick to the perimeter of the store. I'm sure you've heard that a million times, but its still the best advice out there. With boxes and boxes of things that can live on the shelf well beyond the zombie apocalypse, it's best to stick to stuff you can pronounce, and that your old-timey granny would likely approve of. 

When in doubt, talk to a professional... and by professional, I don't mean consulting the Google Machine to read a plethora of god-knows-what articles written by various interweb "doctors". Find a real life doctor, nutritionist, naturopath, or health coach and make sure they have some edumacation. 

We are thrilled to have Kalli holding a sold-out workshop at The Modern Woman Show & Exhibition this year. There are gifts in the door-crasher AND fashion show swag bags from her so make sure to get there early and check it out. Also, did I mention you can see her strutting her stuff during The Runway fashion show as a model? Pick up your VIP tickets to the fashion show at www.modernwomansaskatoon.com! See all the spring styles at Prairieland Park on April 22 at 6:30pm. Hosted by Chantel Saunders and DJ Kush, its sure to be a great time! 

Until next time, my fellow Modern Women, don't let the marketing campaigns dupe you, and don't you put those icky products in your mouth!
Katie xoxo


 

The Power of a Modern Woman: Jess Tetu with Lia Reese Canada

Photo courtesy of deMo Photography

Photo courtesy of deMo Photography

What do you do when you come across a strong inspiring female who encompasses the qualities you see in a community leader? 

You have coffee with her then fast forward 3 years and consider her a friend, mentor, and very lucky to have her as a major sponsor of The Modern Woman Show & Expo.  

Meet our friend Jess Tetu, founder of Lia Reese Canada, the owner and operator of 3 award winning spas - Just For You Day Spa located in Regina, Saskatoon, and Lloydminster.  Jess is a entrepreneur educator, volunteer, a philanthropist, and chair for the annual SABEX Awards. She has been nominated and the recipient for countless awards including being nominated for the upcoming YWCA Women of Distinction Award for Entrepreneurship.  

Over the last few years I have had the pleasure of being a client at Just For You Day Spa in Saskatoon. The Saskatoon location is found conveniently just off 8th street and boasts a relaxing atmosphere, great technicians and staff, and a product area that competes with your high end department store. Jess worked with the industries best to create Lia Reese Cosmetics, Lia Reese Botanicals, Lia Reese Body, and Asher Ty for men. 

Lia Reese represents finding your inner & outer beauty, strengthening self-confidence, self-worth & encourages authenticity. At Lia Reese, we strongly disagree with animal testing and give our heartfelt 100% guarantee that absolutely no animal testing is performed in the development or creation of our products.
— Jess Tetu, Founder of Lia Reese Canada

If you're in the market to relax and treat yourself to a spa service I would highly recommend booking in at Just For You Day Spa. Just over a month ago I booked my best friend Leslie and myself for pedicures and the experience was nothing short of perfection. The pedicure room showcases a comfortable setting, soothing massage beds, and is great for accommodating large groups! The technicians were professional, knowledgeable, and made our time at the spa relaxing (Gisele was so great!). We were given countless options for polish, including the option to have a signature JFY pedicure with a take home REBEL polish. We both left there in a blissful state and even joked that we were not going to leave ;)

On your way out it is hard not to resist the urge to check out all the great displays of makeup, skincare, and body products. Just take a looks at a few of the items you can find within the Lia Reese Canada brand.

Photo courtesy of deMo Photography

Photo courtesy of deMo Photography

Lia Reese Cosmetic Lipstick & Extreme Lipstick

  • Extreme pigment
  • Full coverage
  • Long lasting
  • Packed with the antioxidant vitamin E
  • Contains natural vanillin extract 
Photo courtesy of deMo Photography

Photo courtesy of deMo Photography

Lia Reese Body

The body collection includes 9 botanically scented washes, butters, and souffles. With the power of shea butter, vitamin E, and sunflower oil you will be sure to find a favorite among one of these scents:

  • Cocomo
  • Sweet Lavender
  • Island Breeze
  • Orange Dreamsicle
  • Berry Lovely
  • Pineapple Mojito
  • Apple Pie
  • Canadian Maple
  • Citrus Meadows
Photo courtesy of deMo Photography

Photo courtesy of deMo Photography

Elly Mayday Collection by Lia Reese Canada

Limited Edition Elly Mayday Lipstick Collection for Lia Reese Canada

Collection includes 4 lip colours: Aylesberry / Canadian Girl / Hayloft / Sweet Pea

  • Extreme pigment
  • Full coverage
  • Long lasting
  • Packed with the antioxidant vitamin E
  • Contains natural vanillin extract 
  • Made in Canada

To learn more & shop Lia Reese Canada visit their booth at The Modern Woman Show & Expo this weekend - April 22nd and 23rd at Prairieland Park. Special guest and international model, Elly Mayday will be visiting fans, signing autographs, and speaking on the Lia Reese Stage at 1:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. Saturday April 22nd and 1:00 p.m. on Sunday April 23rd. You will be able to shop the Elly Mayday Collection and all of the Lia Reese Canada products at the event! 

The Fabulously Unfit Girl's Guide To Health & Wellness: pie & lattes

Mmmmm... pie and lattes. Just kidding, today I'm talking about Pilates!

Pilates was something I hadn't done before other than the "Day 4" workout in 21 Day Fix, and a random class at my gym 100 years ago... neither of which gave me a clear understanding of what it was or how to do it correctly. 

So here's the lowdown in a nutshell:
Developed by Joseph Pilates, Pilates is a balance of strength and flexibility training that improves posture, improves core strength and creates long, lean muscles created by movements that focus on quality over quantity. Pilates can be performed on a mat or of a series of specialized equipment. 

I was fortunate to spend a morning with owner, Jana Danielson, at Lead Pilates to learn more about this super popular activity and what makes it so universally respected. 

First of all, HOLY SH*T! That place is huge... 9000 square feet in fact. I think I was expecting to go to a little dance type studio and do stuff on mat and then write about it. Ummm, no. This place is like something out of the future. 

The Fitness Studio alone has adjustable infrared heating to create intentionally warmer temperatures for certain classes, enough Bodhi trainers (think TRX, but newer and cooler) for an entire fitness class mounted into the ceilings, a ballet bar, a huge wall to wall mirror (#fml), and mats, blocks, balls, and props galore that are all provided for your classes. They even have a little light saber wand thing that kills the germs of the mat once you've sprayed and wiped it down. 

Bodhi trainers in the Fitness Studio

Bodhi trainers in the Fitness Studio

And that was just one room, then there is the equipment room full of different contraptions and apparatuses that look like something out of Fifty Shades of Grey ... minus the torture and poorly written novels. More specifically, this equipment includes pieces called Reformer, Trapeze Table and Spine Corrector - all the fine makings of an adult jungle gym. 

Group Equipment Studio

Group Equipment Studio

The Spin studio includes a screen that shows you a virtual peek at the class and where to expect your intervals in order to best pace your workout, and bikes that have the cool option to weeble wobble to give your core an extra good workout for those who are gluttons for punishment.

Last, but not least, I was shown a room with equipment used specifically to show the inner workings of your pelvic floor using infrared imaging. Say what??? This is something SO many women struggle with in some capacity, and here was a room dedicated to just that. Mind = blown.

I was also taken over to the other side of the facility, Lead Intergrated Wellness. This side of Lead houses RMTs, Chiropractors, Reiki, Reflexology, and a Naturopathic Doctor. (I've actualy been seeing their Naturopath, but that a whole other post for another day!) The best part? DIRECT BILLING!!! Seriously though, hoarding all of your massage and chiro receipts in a shoebox til there is enough to justify sending in, like some sort of loser-y savings account?  Not here, just show your insurance info and boom - done. 

When I hung out with Jana for the morning, it was super cool. I tried out some moves on the equipment, learned some ways to release my muscles, and was surprised by all the insight she had into the issues I was having with my own body's mobility and tension just by watching me breathe and use small, slow movements. This lady is a wealth of knowledge.

She emailed me a list of classes she thought would best benefit me particularly and was such a sweetheart to gift me a teaser pack to try them out. Ohhhh, but what a clever girl... cause now I'm hooked. #witchcraft

The types of classes are endless... in addition to traditional mat classes, there are classes in Essentrics, Booty Barre, Block Therapy, Spin, and so much more. You can visit www.leadpilates.com you can get the 411 on all the classes. There are over 100 classes a week, so there's something for everyone. 

My personal favourite is Jump... ok, how do I describe this? You work on a contraption called a Reformer, and use a big bouncy board to work your entire body. Its SO. MUCH. FUN. I especially like Desiree's classes; she is amazing at keeping a good pace while still giving easy to follow direction on the equipment. I loathe high paced fitness classes but at the end of this 30 minute class I was like a kid being told I had to get off the trampoline. #sadtrombone

I also really enjoyed Essentrics... it was harder for me to follow because I'm generally uncoordinated on my best days, but the instructor (Kelly) was awesome at guiding me through what was what. This was sort of bunch of fluid patterns that combines tai chi, yoga, and pilates that works your muscles while they are extended. I broke a good sweat and felt like I was genuinely doing something effective with every movement. 

Annnnnnd... I signed up for the summer series Beginner Mat. Twice a week from May to August. (My buddy Mel is teaching my Thursday class, so I'm pretty pumped for that!) Plus, I clearly need to keep going to Jump.  And while I'm at it, I might as well commit to getting to an Essentrics class once a week. Seriously, stop the insanity!! These classes are like my new crack!! Ok, I never did crack... but if I did...

My husband almost had a stroke when I told him what all this will cost... ok ok, it's a bit more pricey than your standard gym membership, but its a whole different ballgame. (To be fair, my husband hoards socks with holes in them and thinks driving all the way to Edmonton for a bottle of rum is "cost effective".) I feel like the classes offered here are not just your run of the mill fitness classes; they retrain your body to operate like it is intended to, in a state of the art facility, with instructors who are the best of the best. And quite frankly, in the end, paying to stay healthy is less expensive than paying to be sick later in life. So, while you may have to sell a kidney to pay for your Pilates addiction, you only need one anyway. Ha. That said, there are monthly memberships that are well worth it if you are taking 3-4 classes a week, and your first class is free - so get your butts in there! 

You should seriously go check this place out, and while you're at it, check out all the adorable studio-to-street spring fashions available in their boutique... ahem, the Alo faux-leather leggings are to die for! I finally got them and I can't wait to snag a pair of the moto leggings when they are back in stock. Also, I am a sports bra junkie and I can say without any doubt that the MPG sports bras I scored there are the BEST EVER. There are super cute tops, jackets, and even socks. Plus, there are lots of fitness accessories that you use at home to enhance your routine.

Catch Lead at the Modern Woman Show & Exibition both at their booth and at The Runway spring fashion show Saturday, April 22 at 6:30pm. (There just may be a gift from Lead in the VIP swag bags!) Tickets available at www.modernwomansaskatoon.com. This is an absolutely awesome ladies night out... tickets are $45 and include admission to the trade show all weekend, a private VIP lounge with appies before the show, preferred seating, and a super fabulous swag bag! Plus there is time to shop all the looks on the runway after the show, so you can leave with a fresh look for spring! 

Until then, keep enjoying your pie and lattes my fellow fabulously unfit modern women... but probably do some Pilates too. #balance

Katie xoxo


 

I AM A MODERN WOMAN: Ammy Murray with Glittersaurus Rex Jewels

Photos by deMo Photography

Photos by deMo Photography

Tell us about your business?

I primarily make handmade wire wrapped jewelry with semiprecious stones, but recently have expanded my offerings to include a line of crystal elixir oils.  These are oils you can use for massage, as bath oils, as diffuser oils, or just as perfume scented with essential oils.  Each bottle contains a number of crystals as well as a handmade resin pendant.

My Etsy shop intro says I am make jewelry for your inner forest gypsy, making her way hidden through the modern world.  It's made with the understanding that maybe you can't bring your crystal wand to the office, but you can sure adorn yourself with it!

How did you get started?

It all started with a love of crystals.

For as long as I can remember, I've been attracted to crystals. My mom talks about making me empty my pockets before I could come inside the house as a child, as my pockets would be filled with various rocks I had collected during the day. I liked the way they sparkled, or an unusual colour, or a unique shape, or just the way a particular rock felt.

As I grew up, my love of crystals morphed into a small obsession with healing crystals and jewelry. After a particularly rough couple of years where I went through a lot of personal changes, I started learning more and more about the healing and vibrational qualities of different crystals. I started a new rock collection, and found myself with bowls of crystals everywhere - on my desk, in my bathroom, in my kitchen, under my bed. At the same time, I became more and more interested in jewelry featuring crystals. I wanted to have some way of carrying my crystals with me all the time without destroying my pockets - turns out my mom was right to make me empty my pockets every day! Rocks can be rough on fabrics. Plus, I wanted to see my little sparkly beauties shine. I began dreaming about all of the different ways I wanted to wear my crystals. I always knew what I wanted, but finding it was another matter!

Finally, after years of seeing pieces that were almost, but not quite, what I wanted. I decided to start making the jewelry I wanted on my own.  I started reading blogs, and watching youtube, and practicing with craft wire. Then I started asking friends for feedback on what I was doing, and started giving away some of my excess as gifts. I kept experimenting, and as fast as I could make something, ideas for the next piece would start percolating. Very quickly, my house started to become overrun with supplies and finished pieces. That's when I decided to take the next step and open my Etsy shop!

But still, I was increasingly frustrated that I could carry or always access the particular crystal combinations I wanted in a practical and everyday way.  Although making my own jewelry was the solution for a while, I wanted more.

I have always believed in the power of dreams.  Every person is a dream interpreter for themselves – they just need to learn their own language.  If you can understand your own personal set of symbols your subconscious uses, then you can go a long way to solving your own problems.  You are your own best counsellor, if only you can learn to listen.  When someone close to me is going through change or is unhappy, I’ll usually ask them what they are dreaming about lately – because the answer and comfort they need is already there.

In September of 2016, I started dreaming about beautifully scented crystals, singing in harmony with nature, rising out of bathing pools where people would go to heal.  People would come to the pools and were told to enter into one, hurting and disfigured.  After some time in the warm healing waters, inhaling the scents from the crystals and relaxing, they would stand up, completely healed.  The crystals of the pool would then transform into a beautiful woman, who would hand the bather a small piece of herself to keep.

I knew this had to mean something.  I knew I had to make it.  I knew I had to offer it.  But how?  I started meditating on it.

Eventually it came to me.  I knew about making crystal elixirs using water – but what about oil?  I started doing research, and discovered that with some harder crystals, it was possible to infuse them into carrier oils, and the oil itself would begin to carry the vibration and power of the crystal.  But some crystals, especially copper based or bluish crystals, are not appropriate for elixirs as the chemicals in the stone can leach into the surrounding liquid and then be absorbed by the user.  And then I remembered orgone generators.  Essentially, these are crystals and metal shavings embedded into resin.  The embedding itself, or perhaps the organic matrix of the resin, seems to amplify the chi or energy flow of the crystals within.  I had already been experimenting with embedding crystals into resin in my jewelry making – why couldn’t I use the same process to make “wands” that would protect the user from chemical leaching, but at the same time amplify the power of the crystals embedded within?  And why couldn’t this wand eventually become a piece of jewelry for its user?

But that didn’t solve the problem of a scented crystal.  I started researching essential oils and aromatherapy, and found that many different oils have compatible uses with the crystal combinations I love using.  And indeed, one of the best ways to access aromatherapy is to use combinations of essential oils in a carrier oil.  Aha!

Once I struck on the how, the next step became what: What were the best ways to best combine these two powerful modalities?  I sent myself back into dreaming and meditation.  And sure enough, as I meditated, combinations of oils and crystals and purposes began to come to me.  And, the moment a combination was “right”, the name of an associated Goddess would arise alongside to claim this elixir as hers.

And that’s how the Glittersaurus Rex Crystal Oils were born.

My love of making jewelry still stands.  In fact, rather than leave the buyer with a “wand”, each bottle of 4 oz or larger oil contains some small crystals, some larger crystal points, and a series of resin-encased crystals that I’ve made into a pendant for your use long after the oil is gone.  The beauty of it is, the crystals are in a symbiotic relationship with the essential oils and the quartz points, meaning that as the pendant is in the oil, it “steeps”, like a tea, making the power of the crystal stronger and stronger over time.  So, by the time it is ready for you to wear, it has spent all that time growing and recharging its energy, preparing for you, getting to know you.

Each blend contains as a base a piece of obsidian and a quartz crystal point.  The quartz helps to purify intention and amplify power and continues to cleanse the other stones in the oil, and the obsidian provides a grounded base for action to occur.  Each stone used is carefully cleansed with sage, and programmed with the blend’s intention before it is placed in the bottle.  The oils are diluted in either 100% apricot kernel or sweet almond oil.  All essential oils used are 100% pure and organic essential oils.

What inspires you?

The stones.  For me, it all starts with the stones.  I listen to when the "rocks talk", and move from there.

I sort of waver between being very, very minimalist in my designs, and being very intricate.  I'm also very attracted to asymmetry.  I think everything about you should be interesting and unique, and so I'm also very attracted to asymmetry.  I very rarely, for example, make a pair of earrings where both are exactly the same.  They will match, but they will be slightly different in shape or arrangement or in the stones used.

I think these are all a function of being so inspired by nature.  I like to say that perfection is boring.  What I mean by that is, every thing in nature is both absolutely unique and slightly imperfect - which is what makes it unique! I want that echoed in the things I give to the world.

What is your idea of a Modern Woman?

A woman who knows what she wants, and is not afraid to do what she needs to chase it!

What tips can you give to aspiring women entrepreneurs?

Learn as much as you can.  Listen to podcasts, read books, talk to other entrepreneurs.  Apply the same creativity to you give to your business to marketing your business.  And remember - failures are always opportunities to learn.  The only difference between an expert and a beginner is practice.

What is one piece of advice you would give yourself looking back?

Trust yourself.  Listen to yourself.  Meditate more, listen to your body, and don't feel like you have to be perfect all at once.

What is in the future for Glittersaurus Rex Jewels?

I would really love to find some dedicated studio space where I could branch out even more!  I'd love to be in a few stores over the next year or two.  I'm also looking to launch a website as well as a few video series explaining a bit more about each of the oils I create, and the reasons/uses for each crystal.

What would we find you doing in your free time?

Those rare occasions are dedicated to my children.  We like to cook, go for walks, talk and joke.  It doesn't matter where we are or what we are doing - just time together is enough.

Who is someone that you find is a role model for women in business?

Is it trite to say Oprah?  I love that she has built an empire, but an empire with a heart for the Universe.  I love that she encourages and empowers other women to be present and be connected.

Do you think having a mentor is valuable both while you're starting out and even after you are more experienced?

Mentorship is always valuable, at any stage, in every part of your life.  No matter what you are going through, someone else has gone through it first.  I find that my biggest challenge is my own fear of reaching out and seeking mentorship.  However, I've been blessed with some really great role models so far.  And I've always found that when you ask for help or advice, people are always happy to do it.

Check out Ammy's designs HERE and make sure to come visit her booth at The Modern Woman Show on Saturday April 22nd.  She will be located in the Marketplace area and we are so excited to have her and all those healing crystals! 

Train the Mane: How to de-grease those lovely locks

Today I have started my challenge. It's the no washing my hair challenge....

I will fully admit it. I'm a shower junky. I love Love LOVE a warm soak and this includes sudsing up the hair every single day. When friends comment that they only wash their hair every 3-7 days I just don't understand how this could be possible?? My hair is blonde, fine, and thin. When the alarm clock goes off it's straight into the shower to tame what has become a greasy rats nest perched on the top of my head. I have never lasted more than 24 hours (unless trapped at the lake or in a tent) with a greasy mop. I asked the ladies at Visions Salon and Spa for some direction in hopes of training the mane.

Skye: When transitioning to washing less often, the first thing you will feel is that your hair looks oily/wet, and feels a bit grimey/dirty. You will miss the freshly washed feeling!! I always at this point grab my dry shampoo first.

This is exactly my problem...I look like I just got out of a hot yoga class every morning. Someone could sneeze and the moisture will flatten my do. I decided to try this on a weekend....no one needs to see day one and if I follow Skye's tips I will be bouncing into the next week with my grease free flow. 

Skye: Now, I know many of my brunette ladies may struggle with the powdery consistency and colour of many dry shampoos. This is why I always recommend a talc-free product such as the Surface Trinity Dry Shampoo ($27.30 at Visions Salon & Spa). It cleanses the hair with the disinfecting properties of lemon, and absorbs oil with an ingredient called Zeolite that actually comes from volcanic ash!!! It will not dry out your hair of its natural oils as talc-based dry shampoos will that actually cause you to produce even MORE oil!! It respects your body's natural production of oil, allowing you to ween yourself off of the daily wash, while also being COMPLETELY invisible in colour!!

I have purchased dry shampoo in the past with little knowledge about the ingredients or the how to's. Skye's advice makes total sense. If you keep drying your hair out your body will want to produce more oil which is why i'm on this hamster wheel in the first place. 

Skye's How to Dry Shampoo: It is best used by picking up small pieces around your part and front hairline, as well as the crown of your head, and using short spritzes of product holding the nozzle about 6-8 inches away from your scalp. This will allow the product to disperse evenly throughout your exposed oily areas, and you will get the best absorption of oil!! Then let it sit for a few minutes, maybe apply your makeup or something, incorporating it into your morning routine. Once it has sat for 3-5 minutes, it will have had the opportunity to absorb the oil. Use a hairbrush to brush the product through.

You will feel clean, freshened up, AND you'll have a beautiful boost of a NON-lingering, naturally derived fresh citrus scent, with no powdery residue.  

Skye's Style Tip: Another thing I love to do when my hair is feeling oily and dirty, is after I've freshened up with my dry shampoo, playing around with braids or different fun styles. At first, it can feel challenging and difficult, but with practice, you will be a master at braiding! Braids or twists are particularly wonderful for dirty hair because they are beautiful and look intricate, distracting the eye from your dirty hair. I like to add a few clip-in extensions to enhance my braids and make them look much thicker. Adding dry shampoo or the Surface Push Powder ($31.45) to your hair is an awesome way to gain a bit of texture to help you create that thick, messy look without it slipping apart throughout the day! If braiding is not your thing, pull your hair into a low messy bun with a few pieces framing the face, or do a classic top-knot!! Look through Pinterest or YouTube to find some fun styles to distract you from running your fingers through your hair throughout the day. Our hands produce a lot of oil and will cause your hair to feel more oily the more you touch it. It's always fun to add some hair accessories. Hats, clips, headbands and scarves.

On day two I reference some great braid tutorials from Lauren Conrad's blog. WOW!! this is the hair how-to gold mine. Step by step instructions on buns, messy top knots, easy braids, and everything in between to keep me looking like I have just been to the stylist. 

Skye knows: Play around and find something that makes YOU feel beautiful. Before you know it, you will have gorgeous healthy locks that can go 2-3 days or even LONGER without washing. Good luck everyone! Remember that investing in good products with good ingredients is the key to having healthy, happy hair!! Always feel free to pop into Visions Salon & Spa here in Saskatoon. All of our staff are highly trained in Surface hair care, an organic line filled with ingredients that respect both your health and the earth. They will always be able to answer any questions you have and give you a prescription of products tailored to your unique head of hair!!  

-Skye Ukrainetz, Hairstylist and Nail Technician at Visions Salon & Spa.

THANK YOU SKYE!!! I'm on day three and can't wait to brag to my friends how I haven't washed my hair in days and can show off all my new hair styles. Visions Salon and Spa will be showing off their work as a hair sponsor for the upcoming Runway Fashion Show on Saturday April 22nd at the Modern Woman Show & Expo. For more information on VIP tickets click HERE......we happen to know that there is a complimentary blow-out gift certificate from Visions is in those swag bags ;)

Women in BIZ - a Rock Star panel of local women entrepreneurs

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Behind every successful woman is her story. We have gathered a panel of brilliant trail blazers within our community of women entrepreneurs. On Sunday April 23rd at 1:00 p.m. join us as we chat about how they began their journey, what inspires them, and tip and tricks for those with the entrepreneurial spirit.  

  • We are storytellers.
  • We are inspiration.
  • We are knowledge.
  • We are powerful.

Who should run more of the world? Women. Until then, enjoy the guidance of some awesome women who lead fiercely and fearlessly.

Here are the power houses on our 2017 panel:

Jana Danielson

Owner of Lead Pilates

As the owner of Lead Pilates, Cycle & Fitness and Lead Integrated Health Therapies, Jana has worked to create unique business devoted to providing clients with the latest trends in health and fitness and therapies including Chiropractic, Physiotherapy, Naturopathic Medicine, Reflexology and Massage Therapy. Jana is dedicated to an all-around healthy lifestyle and shares this passion with her team and clients. Jana went from teaching Pilates out her basement studio to opening a studio in 2010 on Taylor Street to just this past summer, expanding her Pilates studio to launch a unique organization that integrates multiple movement therapies under one roof.

Jana completed her Bachelor of Commerce and Masters in Business Administration Degrees at the University of Saskatchewan. Jana worked as a Business Consultant before making a career change into the wonderful world of Pilates. She was certified thorough the Pilates Core Integration Program in 2008 and since then has completed certifications through Physical Mind, is PMA Certified and in 2013 joined Balanced Body as a Faculty Member. She is also a CoreAlign Master Instructor.

 

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Mackenzie Firby

Owner of Two Fifty Two Boutique

Mackenzie Firby was raised on a farm near Kenaston, Saskatchewan.  After the completion of High School, Mackenzie moved to Saskatoon where she obtained her Bachelors of Commerce at the University of Saskatchewan in 2003.  Mackenzie was then employed at SaskTel and Hershey as a Sales and Training Representative. She shone in her positions and was awarded various awards within both companies.

Mackenzie realized there was a need for a high-end women’s clothing store in Saskatoon. In 2014, after over a year of research and preparation, Mackenzie opened Two Fifty Two Boutique. Two Fifty Two Boutique carries world renowned brands including Eileen Fisher, DVF, Kate Spade and Vince among many more.

In 2016 and 2017 Mackenzie was honored to be a YWCA Women of Distinction Award nominee in Entrepreneurship. Two Fifty Two was the recipient of two 2016 SABEX Awards, Customer Service and New Business Venture.  They were again nominated in 2017 for Customer Service and Community Involvement. Mackenzie was also nominated for the 2016 ABEX Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award.

Community involvement and having a positive effect in our city and province are extremely important to Mackenzie. She believes in supporting local charities and events as a way of giving back to the community that has been so supportive to her and TFT. Mackenzie is involved and regularly attends charitable events, donates items for fundraising and has in store promotions that support local charities including: The Saskatchewan Cancer Agency, Ronald McDonald House, The Heart and Stroke Foundation, Dress for Success, Hope’s Home and numerous others. Mackenzie has also had speaking engagements at the University of Saskatchewan, on Global and CTV TV and various Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce events.

 

Mandi Newman

Manager of Operations at Vendasta Technologies

Mandi Newman is a typical Type A personality. She’s a lover of lists, calendars and organization — even her closet is color-coded. After graduating with a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Regina in 2010, she joined the sales and finance world with Scotiabank. She is now the Manager of Operations at Vendasta, and looks forward to building her career within the growing Saskatchewan Technology sector!

Vendasta’s platform empowers agencies and media companies to grow their sales of marketing solutions for small and medium-size businesses. Their system identifies hot leads who are interested in the products you offer and allows you to provide scalable tools at the right price and service model when businesses are ready-to-buy. Vendasta has won many awards including: 

SABEX Award - Business of the Year 2016

SABEX Award - Growth & Expansion 2016

Deliotte Tech Fast 50

PROFIT 500 ranking of Canada's Fastest-Growing Companies

Flow Magazine "Best Places to Work in Saskatoon" 2016

 

Candace Ippolito

CEO & Owner of SaskMade Marketplace

Candace Ippolito was raised on a cattle operation near Kisbey, Saskatchewan and remains active in the livestock industry.  An animal science graduate from the College of Agriculture, U of S, Candace is a committee member of Canadian Western Agribition, and an active 4-H alumnus.

SaskMade Marketplace is a specialty grocery store focused on the best in local ingredients. SaskMade connects consumers with farmers through transparency & education of food production. They have created meaningful conversation about where food comes from by offering farm fresh produce & meat, take home ready meals, uniquely Sask ingredients and many more pantry staples, snacks & treats. Join SaskMade today to taste the local difference. Buying local - Good for the community, Good for the soul.

Paula Collins

CEO and Owner of Masala Model & Talent

Established in 2000, MASALA Model & Talent is a Saskatchewan based full service agency providing representation for models, actors, singers & dancers for local & international placement. Masala provides professional services for to clients across Canada & The U.S. from fundraisers to major productions.

The MASALA School of Professional & Personal Development courses enhances confidence/self-esteem in modeling & acting to healthy body image, peer pressure, posture/poise, personal hygiene, etiquette, public speaking, job preparation & professionalism. Paula holds weekly classes to promote confidence, poise, along with a focus on workplace and social etiquette. You can find Paula engaged within the community and supporting other local women entrepreneurs.

We hope to see you on Sunday April 23rd at 1:00 p.m. for an informative and interactive seminar with these ladies!

I AM A MODERN WOMAN: KY Fitness & Nutrition Consulting

Meet Kalli Youngstrom of KY Fitness & Nutrition Consulting

TELL US ABOUT YOUR BUSINESS?

I am the owner operator of KY Fitness and Nutrition Consulting and work as an online health, fitness, and lifestyle coach!

I work with clients to develop customized nutrition and training programs that are designed to suit their lifestyles while helping them achieve their health and fitness goals. All of my programming is done online so that I can offer my services to anyone in the world and work around any schedule. Although I am personally in Saskatoon I have clients all over the world, from Canada, to Australia, to Sweden! With the majority of my business being online a large part of my day is dedicated to creating content for my various social media platforms along with my client programming. I work to provide insightful content on all things health, nutrition, and training on myYouTube page, Facebook, and Instagram in order to provide people with the tools and information to make the choices that are best for their mind and body.

HOW DID YOU GET STARTED?

I have always been an athlete, but after 9 years of wresting competitively and making it to the national level it was time for a change. I became interested in bodybuilding while I was in University completing degrees in psychology and marketing and as I prepared myself for my first bodybuilding competition friends and family began to ask for help with their fitness goals.

I began getting certifications in nutrition and exercise while I was completing my University degrees and started to help others with their fitness by creating customized nutrition and training plans for them. From there my clientele continued to grow and by the time I was done university I had a client base that allowed me to continue with my business full time and pursue coaching as an entrepreneur.

WHAT INSPIRES YOU?

I am inspired by my clients every single day. To have the opportunity to work with clients not only in Saskatoon, but all over the world, and from all walks of life, is truly an eye-opening experience every day. I am continuously motivated to be a better coach and better human through the 1 on 1 interactions I have with my clients on a regular basis. Knowing that I have the opportunity to positively influence the lives of others inspires me to do what I do to the best of my ability every day and continuously grow in all facets of life.

I am also extremely inspired by the opportunity I have to impact women within the community as well as within my social media platforms. I am driven to be a positive role model for women of all ages and encourage them to pursue the path that is right for them, even if it is the less traditional one. Whether it is in fitness, business, or just life, I strive to be a strong role model for all women.

WHAT IS YOUR IDEA OF A MODERN WOMAN?

To me a modern woman is one that pursues her dreams fearlessly, no matter what those dreams may be. I feel grateful that I live in a time where women are encouraged to be trail blazers, crush gender barriers, and break glass ceilings- but I also realize that is not necessarily a path that everyone wants to take. I think a modern woman is one who honors her passion in life, embraces the path that is right for her no matter what others say, and uplifts other women along the way.

WHAT TIPS CAN YOU GIVE TO ASPIRING WOMEN ENTREPRENEURS?

I truly want everyone to live a life of no regrets. If you have a business idea or think that entrepreneurship might be for you, question whether you will always think “what if,” if you were to not pursue it. If you know you will look back and regret not having started that business, developed that product, offered that service… maybe it’s time for a change. I don’t think of anything as concrete, you can always change paths, try new things, and adjust. I think that it can be scary to consider entrepreneurship because of the risks attached and viewing it as a cemented decision, but I think regret is even scarier. What’s the worst that could happen?

DO YOU THINK HAVING A MENTOR IS VALUABLE BOTH WHILE YOU'RE STARTING OUT AND EVEN AFTER YOU ARE MORE EXPERIENCED?

Absolutely. Although… do as I say, not as I do. I have never had a true business mentor, but I like to think that I have many mentors in life who I look up to for guidance, inspiration, education, and encouragement. My business is unique in that I “am” my business and it developed very organically. There was no start up cost, no business plan, so the need for a mentor in that sense was less important than it would be to other businesses. I look to role models and mentors within all industries for guidance in making decisions in business and in life and believe an extremely valuable education can be achieved this way. You can avoid many missteps in business by listening to stories of others experiences. Whether from 1 or 100, learning from others is key to success.

DO YOU FEEL A STRONG SENSE OF COMMUNITY AMONG BUSINESS WOMAN AND FEMALE ENTREPRENEURS IN SASKATOON AND IN SASKATCHEWAN?

I love the feeling of community that I experience locally within the group of female entrepreneurs. Being so involved in many social media platforms enables me to interact with female businesswomen and entrepreneurs throughout Saskatoon and Saskatchewan, some who I have yet to have the chance to meet in person, but am able to connect with via social media. Some have even turned into great friends after having had the chance to meet in person and its amazing being able to feel connected to other boss babes despite being an online business! I think this sense of community just goes to show the movement of women empowering each other instead of competing with each other. Hell hath no furry like a team off boss babes supporting one another 😉

Want a chance to meet with Kalli and learn about your food and diet choices? She is hosting a workshop at Modern Woman Show at 3pm on Saturday April 22nd at Prairieland Park. Click HERE to learn more and reserve your spot!

Vendor Spotlight: Kassidy Marschal from Paint Nite Saskatoon

Tell us about your business?

While we don’t like to use the word “class” due to its stuffy connotation, the easiest way most people describe our business is a “paint class in a bar!” Our main goal is for our guests to relax and have a ton of FUN: they socialize with friends and loved ones, they indulge in a drink or two, they might dance a little and sing along with our party playlist, and finally, they get a little creative! We sell all our tickets on our website (PaintNite.com) in advance, so our guests can choose which painting we’ll take them through step by step, which local venue they would like to attend, and of course, the date and time that works best for them!

We currently hold more than 15 public events each week in Saskatoon, North Battleford, Prince Albert and Lloydminster, as well as various charity fundraisers and private parties around north-central Saskatchewan each week.

How did you get started?

I was actually on maternity leave in 2015 when my cousin and aunt went to a Paint Nite in Calgary. I saw their paintings and was floored by how different yet beautiful they both were! And they did this in a BAR of all places? Talk about a perfect combination for a relaxing evening: alcohol and paint!

I’ve always had a passion for creating art, and I like to think I have a bit of an entrepreneurial spirit. So I immediately inquired about bringing the company to Saskatchewan; I was sure it would be hit here! What I liked most about the business concept was that – contrary to popular belief – Paint Nite is not a franchise. Their licensing model offers more freedom to run the business as I choose, and avoid outrageous franchising fees. Basically, our license allows us to use the respectable Paint Nite brand, sell tickets through a secure website, and have access to thousands of beautiful copyrighted paintings. Meanwhile, we get to enjoy being a “local” company: local artists partnering with local venues, bringing the joy of Drinking Creatively to Saskatchewan!

We started with three events in January of 2016, and life kind of went nuts from there! It’s been an amazing journey so far.

What inspires you?

My amazing team of artists inspire me every day. The energy they bring to each event and their passion for art is contagious. They truly make days brighter and bring happiness to everyone around them, keeping our guests coming back again and again. I can’t imagine where we’d be without each of them!

What is your idea of a Modern Woman?

I don’t think there’s any one particular way to be a Modern Woman; to me, the term encourages inclusivity and diversity. Anyone who feels empowered in their femininity, and confident to be whomever she wants to be – whatever that may look like. I love that in this day and age there’s a conversation about supporting one another, despite our differences. Whether you’re a stay-at-home mom, a stiletto-ed CEO, or striving to find a balance between all the different roles a woman can have in her life, I like to think there’s a sense of comraderie in being female. We’re all just trying our best!

What tips can you give to aspiring women entrepreneurs?

Figure out what your strengths and your weaknesses are. Literally make a list! Do what you’re best at, and either improve your skills where they’re lacking or delegate out the tasks you’re not so great at. You can always hire an accountant if you’re a horrible bookkeeper, take a social media workshop if you find online advertising intimidating, or read a book to become a better boss. You’re likely not Wonder Woman, and that’s okay!

Finally, don’t let your drive and your passion waiver in the face of self-doubt. I read an interview with Emma Watson a long time ago, where she spoke about feeling like a fraud sometimes; like she had somehow tricked people into she was talented and had falsely fallen upon success. Surely if Em Wats can fall victim to this sensation occasionally, we all can. But it’s not true! No one is more passionate about your business than you, and you are entirely capable of being successful.

What is one piece of advice you would give yourself looking back?

You can’t do it all, Girl. Hire help and delegate sooner, rather than later. And put that baby in daycare, already. (Shockingly, trying to work 60 hour weeks from home with a toddler doesn’t mix well.) She’ll even enjoy going, I promise. She’ll still love you the most.

What is in the future for Paint Nite in Saskatoon?

We’re always booking fresh paintings, partnering with great venues, and hiring new talent! We vow to keep the party going and the creativity flowing.

A big goal for this year is to do as many fundraisers as we possibly can; we want to support our local community as much as possible. Our dream is to hit the six figures mark. How amazing would it be if we raised over $100,000 for local charities?!

What would we find you doing in your free time?

Oh gosh, this is where you discover how truly boring I am! (I’ve actually convinced myself that working in front of the TV constitutes as R&R some days.) But spending time with my hubby and little girl definitely top the list. We’re also busy preparing for Baby 2, which is currently consuming a lot of time and thought! I recently joined a yoga class. I like decorating (and redecorating) my house. I enjoy photography. Obscure Netflix dramas and documentaries are my fave. If I weren’t pregnant, I’d like to be being skiing and travelling lots right now. Am I super basic? …Probably.

Who is someone that you find is a role model for women in business (personal or celebrity)?

What kind of Saskatchewan girl would I be if I didn’t give a shout-out to Rachel Mielke! She turned her hobby of making jewelry into a hugely successful company: Hillberg & Berk. I’m a bit of a marketing geek, so I admire the way she was able to create such a luxurious brand from homemade jewelry. Branding is everything!

Do you think having a mentor is valuable both while you're starting out and even after you are more experienced?

Absolutely! While starting a business can be extremely rewarding, it can also be overwhelming, isolating, and downright scary. Having someone to talk to who has experienced the same ups and downs that you’re going through is invaluable.

Do you feel a strong sense of community among business woman and female entrepreneurs in Saskatoon and in Saskatchewan?

I do, and I feel like this community is strengthening all the time. We have to thank organizations such as the Modern Woman Show for that; it’s so important to celebrate and support our local female-driven businesses! I think the majority of our community understands that celebrating another’s success doesn’t minimize your own.

You can hang out with Kassidy on Saturday April 22nd & get creative with TWO OPTIONS of Paint Nite classes (2pm & 7pm). Enjoy the Modern Woman Show, a cocktail or two, take in the shopping, tutorials,  and bring home a painting!

 

Click Here to join the Saturday April 22nd Class at 2:00 p.m.

Click Here to join the Saturday April 22nd Class at 7:00 p.m.

*classes include your admission into the Modern Woman Show & Expo

 

The Fabulously Unfit Girl's Guide To Health & Wellness: step up

Fitness trackers. They are everywhere. Fitbit, Garmin, Apple ... you name it, they make it. So why are they so popular?

Well. Let me tell you why I love mine. I have a Fitbit One. It's a little bitty thingy that I clip on my bra that tells me what's what. Am I a sloth? Am I less of a sloth? If indeed I am a sloth that day, it is a techy reminder to get up and run around the block or whatever fit people do. 

These things also monitor heart rate, calories burned, stairs climbed, and even sleep patterns. It's pretty cool really. Many designers such as Michael Kors and Tory Burch have even jumped on board creating more fashionable ways to wear your tracker because, let's face it, they're ugly. (Hence why I chose the hidden clip model.)

There are two things I personally like about Fitbit. One is their customer service, it's awesome and you talk to real people when you have a problem. They understand the panic when you have an issue tracking your steps ... after all, if your Fitbit didn't track those steps, did they even really happen? Answer: No. 

The other thing I love is the challenges. I am a super competitive person so the fact that I can add a network of friends to my Fitbit world and have weekly races to get the most steps is motivation at its finest. Just ask my family and friends about the times I've been walking circles around the house or running on the spot to get ahead of so-and-so. True story. "Circle walking" has become a coined term when referring to my Fitbit antics. I have a group of people that routinely do challenges together, and although I know them all in one way or another - many don't know each other. All they know is that they are step competition and they must be destroyed. If you think I'm exaggerating, you've never been part of The Workweek Hustle or The Weekend Warrior.

My peeps... they vary week to week, but most of us are regulars!

My peeps... they vary week to week, but most of us are regulars!

They say you're supposed to get 10,000 steps a day. Ok, reality check. You might think that's easy, but for those of us who work at a desk all day it's not happening without some effort. 

On an average day if I did nothing but work, I would get only about 2000 steps. Status: Sloth.(In fact, yesterday I binge watched Scandal and got a corspe-like 884 steps. #sorrynotsorry) 

On a day when I did errands and worked I would get about 4000-5000. 

If I worked, ran a couple errands, and spent an hour on the treadmill I would get around 8000-9000. 

If I worked, ran errands, took my dogs to the dog park, and spent an hour on the treadmill - bingo. 10,000-11,000. But that's what it takes for me to reach non-sloth status in my real life... and for the record, I don't have time for all this shit. 

We just returned from a trip to Florida.  When I went to hop the plane I realized I forgot my Fitbit... Oh heeeelllll no, going without it just wasn't an option. Holidays are when I do my best Fitbitting! Believe it or not - I could buy one right in the airport, out of a Best Buy vending machine. I didn't, because they didn't have a model I was interested in - but my first stop after checking into my hotel was Walmart, where I purchased a Flex 2. Although it was a wristband (which I poo poo because they cramp my style...), it was water resistant and that worked well with my plans to drink several gallons of wine in the pool. The cool thing was comparing the two when I got home, and while the clip is most discreet - it was also more accurate step for step. Fun fact. 

I wore my band every day that were out hitting the theme parks, malls, stadiums, and night spots. Those days I was getting roughly 20,000 - 25,000 steps a day without even thinking about it. 

Moral of the story: Spend thousands of dollars on a vacation and you will meet and exceed your step goals. Ha. #fitspo

Seriously though, these little things are great ways to stay accountable to get up and get moving! If you have a Fitbit feel free to add me to your network! Just beware of my "circle walking". 

Keep calm and step on my fellow modern women!

Katie 

Xoxo

and the Modern Hustle recipient is.....

Freedom Bound Books

We are thrilled to announce the winner of Our Modern Hustle presented by The Creative Hustle - the four week mentorship program by deMo Photography, Modern Woman Show & Expo, and Our Collective Muse is Leah Robinson of Freedom Bound Books

Photo by Freedom Bound Books via Facebook

Photo by Freedom Bound Books via Facebook

Leah designs, prints, cuts, and binds year planners and journals. This journey started with an idea and need for a daily planner to fit the needs of her busy schedule. Leah is a super mom of three with a wickedly supportive husband to help give her guidance along the way. She is ready to help out those busy households with her intricate book designs. There is nothing on the market like her creations and she is ready to expand her passion. We are so excited to be a part of her entrepreneur journey. 

Leah will be featured on an upcoming post for Our Collective Muse, she will be participating in a four week mentorship program with deMo Photography - The Creative Hustle. You will also be able to visit her booth at the 2017 Modern Woman Show & Expo at Prairieland Park on April 22nd & 23rd.  We can NOT WAIT to see how Freedom Bound Books and Leah grow through this experience. 

Let's give her some love by visiting her page and showing her a LIKE  - Freedom Bound Books. 

 

Increase Productivity: 8 Tips from a Happy Driver

About six months ago I walked into the office at 7:45 am as usual, set my things down, unpacked my full lunch kit into the mini fridge and settled down at my desk ready, alert and excited to start my day. This is my best time: between the hours of 7:45 am and about 3:45 pm I am the most alert, productive and efficient in my workday. This is my normal.

A co-worker approaches me and says “Mandi, I always notice you are full of energy from the start of your day to the end!” I feel it too, though truth be told, from 3:45 pm until 5:30 pm when I leave, I am putting in more effort to be “energetic” to say the least. Due to my 4:45 am wakeup call, by late in the afternoon, I am losing steam. At least I am faking it well.

Said co-worker then proceeded to ask for my advice on staying energetic, how to increase productivity and stay organized during my fairly hectic workday. Those who work in the technology space can relate. Especially those in the start-up/fairly new environment—think 50-200 employees. My role can have me working with several different teams and departments all within one workday, and it involves a lot of time management, quick thinking and the ability to be a chameleon depending on the role I am filling at any given moment. He proceeded to explain that he wanted some advice on how I stay focused, patient and fairly low stress while maintaining a full workload and then some.

8 Tips to Increase Productivity

His question made me step back and really think. He wanted my advice? What kind of wisdom could I bestow that would be anything new or life changing? Well, to start with, I guess I could review what a typical “day in my life” looked like and pull some key habits/consistencies in my days. Here is what I found:

1. Sweat everyday

Or at least most days, before the work day begins. A bootcamp, bike ride, run, yoga, traditional weights, etc. I take in whatever fits my week, and most importantly, what I enjoy. If I am bored, I change it up. I rarely do the same thing for weeks on end, or even day-to-day for that matter. This keeps my morning sweat session something I look forward to, even when the sleep fairies tell me it’s far too early to get up.

2. Take the thought of what to eat out of the equation

I buy lots of groceries Sunday, and plan/prep for the busy week. Filling my fridge with lots of variety of both healthy and more fun foods allows for me to be hassle free when it comes to food during the week. Each evening I pack my food for the entire next day, and bring it with me when I am rushing out at 5:30 am. Eating fresh variations of foods keeps me feeling alert, awake, energized and ready to tackle the hectic meeting-filled, task-filled days that working somewhere as fast growing as Vendasta.

3. Shutdown and read 

Each night I shut down all technology approximately one hour before I would ideally like to be asleep. This includes TV, laptop, cell phone, iPad—any screen that has a back light. I pick up a book every evening. And no, this isn’t always a professional development book—sometimes this is something embarrassing like Harry Potter, or another easy read. The point is that I read from something that requires a lamp and turning pages, not touching a screen. This ensures I am alert and ready to be fully connected each day at work, which in the software as a service space is crucial. Laptop, headset, smart phone all in hand for the entire day can be exhausting if you do the same when you arrive home each night. Expand your knowledge and borrow a book from someone you look up to, or that is your mentor, and you can mix-up your nightly reading to ensure that you are having fun but also maybe improving your productivity at the same time!

4. Sleep

This one ties nicely into number three. Reading will ensure you actually fall asleep quicker and remain asleep (i.e. you didn’t leave Jimmy Fallon on in the background to jolt you awake mid dream). Adequate sleep is something I neglected in my early twenties, though I realized its importance a few years ago. It’s surprising how much of an effect an inadequate amount of sleep can have on my ability to juggle a fast paced, partner-centric day; just the kind of day that is certainly waiting for me when I arrive at Vendasta HQ. Our partners are in various different time zones, so when you are groggy at 8 am and yawn as I pick up my headset, they will hear it and likely not have the world class service Vendasta is known to provide. My goal is to get a minimum of seven hours of sleep per night with no background noise, other than my sleeping dachshund puppy snoring alongside me.

5. Cutback on the digital communication

At one point I was using Trello, Evernote, Google Calendar, email, Slack and Pivotal Tracker. While trying to stay “organized” I was overwhelmed and scattered with overuse of technology. Gasp! She works in a SaaS based company and wants to avoid technology?! False: I want to utilize it effectively. Find a few apps that will work best for you to stay organized. Further, keep it simple and try and use something that the majority of your co-workers use to streamline your correspondence. The best perk of using the same tools as your coworkers is that you can get great tips on how to best use them. Be consistent with these select apps. Find what’s going to work best for you and stick with it. At least until the “next best” app is released, and then of course test it, try it, critique it. We are in this agile space for a reason!

6. Win list

Daily in my preferred app/calendar, I create a quick daily “wins” list—a few items that I know I can complete that day and feel like I am winning. This is a big one. Often times, depending on your role, in the software space you are tasked with things that will take time, several iterations, collaborations and, frankly, fail more times than they are successful. Process changes, busy customers, feature requests, software bugs and the list continues. These hiccups can throw curve balls into getting things fully accomplished in any given workday. Having a quick wins list allows you to feel like you are being productive and getting ahead. Often this list flows into your “slower wins” list, and makes you a better contributing member of the workplace.

7. Take a tech timeout

In a perfect world we would all get our lunch break and leave work at a decent time to have a “balanced” work-life pendulum. Sorry in advance for bursting this oh-so-nice dream that is pushed in every health magazine on the stands. Here is a reality check: if you ask most successful, career-centric individuals at all levels, they will admit that they are not always “balanced.” When their career is thriving their personal life may suffer (if even slightly) and vice versa.

In order to make the best of this reality instead of looking at this in a pessimistic frame of mind, I choose to both love my job and take a hot second (sometimes literally I need some summer air/heat) to reset, refresh and get back at it! So, yes you may miss lunch trying to stay ahead of your growing list of to-dos, and yes you may work past 5 pm sometimes, but that doesn’t mean you can’t take a time out. The wonderful world of most SaaS based companies, or at least ours, provides a culture and environment conducive to work hard, play hard environment. Take a break at a non traditional time, maybe in your day it’s slower at 9 am and super busy at 5 pm. Take a 15 min break at 9 am and go for a short walk around the block, play a game of ping pong, find a quiet corner and read something interesting or just sit quietly with some music and a cup of joe.

8. Bus driver mindset

No, I am not going to give you advice on meditating or some life changing never heard before tidbit on how to be positive but here are the facts. You drive your own metaphorical life bus. You choose your direction each and every day. You can choose to view every hiccup, bug, change in process, upset partner and empty coffee pot as a massive traffic accident, or you can choose to thrive and appreciate all the things working in this unique, culturally charged environment provides. Take each growing pain as an opportunity to never feel stagnant or bored. You get to come to work each day and learn something new, improve a customer’s experience, improve workflow and, gasp, maybe even contribute to a future BIG thing. Do you want to just drive the same route with zero change, zero obstacles every day for ever? If your destiny includes driving several different models and all different speeds, then get your seat belt on and navigate your way holding onto an (almost) always positive mindset!

These were just a few things I shared with my fellow Vendastian. I quickly realized that while these things all seem simple and obvious to me, they are not so obvious for others, and it’s valuable to share productivity hacks with others. Vendasta is big on promoting a healthy workplace culture, and the daily habits of our executive feed into that, as well as the habits of all Vendastians. I hope that some of my daily habits can help any of you out there feeling stressed, overwhelmed, tired and unproductive in your bustling agency, software company or any demanding workplace you may be a part of.

Mandi

*Amazing things are happening at Modern Woman Show & Expo in 2017. Stay tuned for more information on new features at the event, including two workshops facilitated by Steve Kushman. We will be focusing on the development of Goal Setting for young females and an mentor-ship program for inspiring women in business. #atradeshowwithpurpose

Here We Go! Welcome to the 2017 Modern Woman Show

Oh, how i love the holidays! It's a time where we feel the delight in giving - offering love and togetherness and of course, a few beautifully wrapped gifts under the tree.  Some of the most recurring themes of the holidays include family gatherings, overloading on food & beverages, and certainly feeling the fury of crowded malls. It is also a theme among us at Modern Woman that a New Year and SHOW is upon us.

When the team at Modern Woman started to plan the 2017 'season' (back in July....)we wanted to focus on the continued development of the show encompassing our forever motto -"inspire strong, confident women with an appetite for adventure and a passion for life." We have brought back the anticipated spring fashion show, with increased seating for those that were not able to snag a ticket. Our partnerships with local businesses has flourished to include a mentorship opportunity for one lucky winner - Click here for details on Our Modern Hustle.

In keeping with our values as supportive women entrepreneurs, we added new areas to the event including The Marketplace & Learn n' Shop. Local crafters and artisans have a farmer's market style area in the middle of our busy trade-show to showcase the intricate items that they are so passionate to share with us. The Learn n' Shop has already become such a success with interactive class options within the event. *SPOILER ALERT* We are tickled pink about having Paint Nite, Lead Pilates, and Ryde YXE among just a few of the classes that will be offered. New and exciting opportunities for businesses and attendees will continue rolling out over the course of the next couple months. 

As you may have noticed our website and blog has also seen a makeover in the last week.  I'm so excited to have our bloggers write some more 'hot topic' posts, focusing on issues that not only effect each of our personal lives, but often hit the hearts and homes of people in our community.  We will be featuring themed posts in series including The Fabulously Unfit Girl's Guide To Health & Wellness, I'm a Modern Woman - a look at local women entrepreneurs, and we will be sure to keep you updated on all thing Modern Woman.

From all of us at The Modern Woman - may the season find you among those you love, sharing in generosity and gratitude. We hope to see you in April!

Chantal xoxo

OUR MODERN HUSTLE...calling all #GIRLBOSSES!!!

OUR MODERN HUSTLE – this amazing opportunity is brought to you by Our Collective Muse, Modern Woman Show & Expo, and The Creative Hustle by deMo Photography.

What is Our Modern Hustle?

Who has started a business and is needing a little help? Do you or someone you know have a great idea, awesome product or service that just needs to be seen? We have created an opportunity to expand your reach, learn from some seasoned #girlbosses, and get some free sh$*! to expand your business in 2017 and beyond!

What do you get?

1. Get featured on Our Collective Muse – the popular blog featuring 12 women with 12 different views on everything from fashion, food, crafts, how-to guides, and everything in between. Receive an exclusive blog post featuring your business.

2. A complimentary standard booth package at The Modern Woman Show & Expo on April 22nd & 23rd at Prairieland Park. This event sees over 3500 attendees- in your demographic. Whether you sell a product or service, your business NEEDS to be at the show. You will also receive an invitation to the Social Media Reputation seminar by Vendasta Technologies- we talk all things internet & social media marketing.

3. And to top it off – receive a spot in The Creative Hustle by deMo Photography. A 4 week mentor-ship program with a primary focus is YOU and your goals. This hands on teaching touches on everything from branding, marketing and social media. The intimate classes (of only 4 women entrepreneurs) encourages you to dig down deep within yourself to best represent your business.

Who can apply?

                  -you are a female entrepreneur

                  -your business is based in Saskatchewan

                  -you have never had a booth or have been involved in The Modern Woman Show & Expo or The Creative Hustle

                  -you have the drive to want to succeed as a women entrepreneur!

That sounds amazing! Where do I apply?

                  Click here to nominate yourself or someone you think deserves this great opportunity!

Nominations are open until February 15th 2017 . Recipient to be announced March 1st 2017

Meet our Partner: Realty Executives Saskatoon

 

 

With a new season approaching it always feels like the right time to think about home renovations, spring cleaning, planning out what you will do with your yard this year...or in fact look for a new or existing home to purchase.  In preparation for the big event we caught up with Broker/Owner of Realty Executives Saskatoon, Wayne Zuk, to talk about the brokerage, what inspires him, and what tips he has for female entrepreneurs.  Realty Executives Saskatoon is the Presenting Sponsor of The Modern Woman Show and the agents are truly - Where the experts are.

Tell us about your business?

Our business is a full service real estate brokerage offering Residential, Commercial, and Farm real estate services. We have 115 licensed real estate Executives, plus an admin staff of 10. In 2015 we were involved in 2200 real estate transactions with a volume of just over 780 million dollars.

 How did you get started?

We started out in 1976 under the brand name Ashford Realty. Ashford was a subsidiary of the Alberta based Nu-West Development Corporation, and a sister company to a prominent home builder called Cairns Homes.

 What inspires you?

I'm inspired by watching adults help children. I'm inspired by health care workers who work with our seniors. I'm inspired by watching young people achieve personal and professional goals beyond their wildest dreams.

 What is your idea of a Modern Woman?

My mother was born in 1921. Her focus was to get married, and have a family, and look after that household - which at the time was a Time and a Half job. Then, once her 5 children were old enough, she thought about work outside the family home. Very little thought or time was dedicated to herself. The idea of a Modern Woman, in my opinion, is different. The first focus, in most cases, is to get an education, travel the world, build a career, and then think about a family, which also amounts to a Job and a Half.  I think the Modern Woman is more in tune with looking after herself, and dealing with the stress of the Life/Work/Family Balance in a more effective way. In the end....it still amounts to ALOT of HARD, HARD, work.

 What piece of advice would you give to an aspiring female entrepreneur?

Take More Risk--what would you do...if you knew you couldn't fail--Do IT!   Learn how to maximize the opportunities that present themselves.----Learn to listen to your intuition.

 Do you have a female entrepreneur mentor?

I really admire the business acumen of Arlene Dickinson, and recently had the opportunity to listen to Christine Magee, co-founder of Sleep Country--both have compelling success stories. Women in business should be inspired by these ladies.

Do you think there is a supportive network for women entrepreneurs in Saskatoon and Saskatchewan?

I think there is room to grow in this area--and the efforts of events like Modern Woman can go a long way to ensuring that future female entrepreneurs have the plan, have the support, and have the mentoring necessary. Continued SUCCESS!

 

Visit the Realty Executive Saskatoon booth at the Modern Woman Show on April 16th & 17th at Prairieland Park. Learn what a REX agent can do for your buying and selling needs. You can also see a few of the agents on the Runway with FIVEAM clothing at 7:00 p.m. on Saturday April 16th. Don't miss it!

LEADING the way in Saskatoon: Our introduction into Pilates

 

What is Pilates?

The art of controlled movement to improve flexibility, build strength, and develop endurance in the entire body. It places emphasis on alignment, breathing, and developing a strong core, improving coordination and balance.

Now what is Lead Pilates?

Take all the fundamentals of Pilates and then place them in a facility with amazing instructors, advanced technology and equipment. Now add a wide range of services that include innovative classes to the ability of having Integrated Health Therapies such as Massage, Chiropractic, and Sports Medicine Services- ALL UNDER ONE ROOF. Oh, and don't forget the amazing exclusive clothing line Alo Clothing.

 

Our Experience

When I had the chance to check out the new Lead Pilates studio, I knew it was something I couldn’t say no to. Having never tried Pilates I was confident that Jocelyn and myself would have the best experience with owner, Jana Danielson guiding us.  Jana had suggested we start our afternoon off in a BURN class… being a lover of hot yoga I felt this was going to be right up my alley.

 

The class was taught by the amazing Desiree, an experienced instructor that teaches a range of classes at the facility.  The room was a perfect summer hot day– not hot like make you drip sweat and wonder how the heck you will get through the next 50 minutes.  They achieve this perfect temperature with infrared heating from the ceiling.

 

Jocelyn and I were supplied with beautiful mats, and when I say beautiful, it was literally the best mat I have ever used.  Desiree was a great instructor, she had a perfect location on the side of the room so we could see her movements and the room was filled with mirrors so we could always make sure our posture was correct in each exercise.

 

The work-out was dynamic and had a great focus on pelvic floor strengthening. From our toes to the top of our heads, the exercises were challenging and fun. When we finished they provided us with wet cloths in the cool down to wipe our brows.

 

After class it was time for a tour of the entire studio. What a wonder! I was in awe at the vision and execution Jana has made. Lead Pilates is not just the large Pilates machines (called Reformers), it has grown into several areas and as Jana says, “With each class we offer there is one foot firmly grounded in the world of Pilates, and one foot in another aspect of fitness.”  This is so true, Lead now offers classes like the one we took - BURN, as well as, Essentrics, and Bodhi Suspension Training – which gives the ability to be suspended from all fours to improve flexibility, balance, and strength.

 

They have great mat classes for all levels and yes, you can learn the Reformer and other Pilates equipment too. The list goes on to include Booty Barre classes, Prenatal, and Mommy & Baby classes.  One class that definitely stood out in my mind was their addition of cycling. This isn’t your regular spin class – everything about your ride is projected onto the screen in front of you, feeling the impact of different terrains, and creating a feeling of being outdoors with their advanced bikes.

 

Leaving the building I felt like I was leaving a new home. Everything about the facility and staff make you want to return sooner than later. I highly recommend trying out a class or two (your first class is always free!). In the words of Lead Pilates - Love the Life you Lead.

Thank you Jana, Des, and all the fabulous Lead Staff for making my experience so great! Can't wait to come back :)

Chantal

 

 

When I was asked to join Chan in a Pilates class I was super excited as I’ve been wanting to try it for quite some time now. I have a few friends that do it religiously and are always chatting it up.  So thanks to a lovely friend for some child care I was able to attend their Friday afternoon BURN class.

 

At first the thought of “hot” roomed anything made me a bit queasy, still having some baby hormones raging. It was amazing! The infrared heat was so cozy and nice.  I was so impressed with the class and the trainer Des was incredible. So knowledgeable and spunky.  This facility exceeded my expectations big time. In my head, I had only pictured mat classes and the reformer boards… It’s SO MUCH MORE!! The cycle classes, the massage and chiro, and a clothing line in the front lobby. This place has it all.  A huge thank you to Jana for having us. What a great experience!

Joc XX

 

Lead Pilates can be found at their new location just off of College Drive & McKercher Drive on the corner of Packham Avenue & 105th St. in Sutherland. Make sure to visit their website for detailed descriptions of all the classes and amenities they offer. Don't miss the complimentary mat class at The Modern Woman Show & Expo at 9:30 a.m. on both Saturday April 16th & Sunday April 17th at Prairieland Park (just bring your own mat!). Lead will be on location all weekend to show you all the services they provide, as well as, they can be seen on the runway at 7:00 p.m. on Saturday April 16th with their amazing multi functional athletic wear.

 

All photos courtesy of deMo Photography