women in business

Don't Fear the Reefer

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Okay, okay, I know what you’re thinking. Why would one of the Modern Woman girls be blogging about weed?! The tragedy, the scandal, whatever is this world coming to?

 

Still with me? Fabulous.

 

We all know cannabis by many names, weed, reefer, dope, pot, marijuana, maryjane, ganja etc. As much as these were all the norm for the past several decades, we’re coming into a time here where cannabis is making it’s grand reappearance on the global stage. Not to get too history-ey but it is worth noting that cannabis has been used for hundreds, thousands, millions of years for dozens of different things.

 My favourite fun fact is that Queen Victoria did in fact use cannabis tincture to quell the pain of her period cramps, good ol’ Vicky and I have that in common. 150 odd years later, and here I am using that same cannabis tincture recipe to make gummy bears that replace the advil in my medicine cupboard. I don’t know about you guys, but I’ve dealt with chronic migraines most of my adult life and I’d rather eat a gummy bear once or twice a day than roll the dice with what pharmaceutical painkillers are going to do to my liver down the road. That’s not to say pharmaceuticals are bad! That mostly says that I’m extremely paranoid and live in fear.

 

And that doobie you smoked in college while you were experimenting? Definitely not the same plant we’re seeing these days. Cannabis prohibition caused so many growers to breed out so much of the good stuff and bump up the levels of the psychoactive stuff (which is still good, but that’s another rant for another day).

 

As it stands in Canada here, cannabis is currently only legal for medical purposes, so that means we’re seeing more and more information and research surfacing on how cannabis can help and hinder us. And the way I see it, that’s great! Give me the lab tests, show me your lack of pesticides! Immuno-compromised? Try an irradiated product! There’s so many options out there for people nowadays that there’s almost no reason not to at least open your mind to it a bit.

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 That THC molecule that makes you so giggly and paranoid? In a therapeutic amount it will alleviate your pain and calm depression.

 

 The munchies? Imagine how that feels to someone suffering from an eating disorder.

 

THC’s best friend and partner in medicinal crime, CBD, has no to little psychoactive effect but is quickly becoming one of the most popular oils and buds that producers sell because it lowers anxiety levels, helps with inflammation and some studies are solidifying their findings of CBD slowing the development of certain cancers.

 

This is all great news to a lot of people who suffer with a host of illness’. I know, as someone who works in the medical cannabis field, I’ve seen amazing things happen. I wouldn’t go so far as to say miracles because, well, that’s a bit much. However, if I can see a simple plant improve someone’s quality of life, then it’s all worth it.

 

 I started out working in this field long after I became a patient myself, battling breast cancer when you already don’t have the hardest working immune system presents a challenge. All of the pills I was dependent on to live were starting to wear me down, in more ways than one. As a long time nay-sayer to weed I was reluctant to use it, medicinal or otherwise.

That all changed when I started chemotherapy. I hadn’t eaten or slept in days, I just laid there and cried about the pain in between reruns of Say Yes To The Dress. On day 8 of not keeping food down, I broke. I smoked a bowl and low and behold, ate the toast. I also stopped crying, my anxiety and fear that had been operating at 110% for weeks finally started to dissipate. It was like clouds parting, I was sentient, I was alive.

 

 Years later, here I am, writing this article and spraying peppermint flavoured THC spray under my tongue to deal with the wild lower back pain my estrogen suppressants give me. I’m in remission, but that doesn’t mean I ever stopped using cannabis, I suffer from PTSD as well and as anyone who’s ever dealt with that knows, flashbacks and triggers are exactly ZERO fun. THC allows you to step outside of that VCR-esque rewind and replay you get stuck in, which I wouldn’t trade for any pill in the world.

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All of this being said, I’m a huge advocate for recreational cannabis use as well.

 

Contrary to the typical ‘stoner stereotype’ that exists, I own exactly 0 bob marley merchandise, I have never had dreadlocks, and I do not live in my mother’s basement playing video games all day. I simply am a part of a generation that is pushing forward a change in how we see alcohol, cannabis and other vice-like past times.

 

 I’m no stranger to a glass (bottle) of wine every once in awhile, but I’ve also seen alcohol do some pretty terrible things to families and individual’s lives. So, in the name of hereditary alcoholism and my sad, sad liver I choose to partake in cannabis instead. Most days. I’m weak, don’t judge me.

Smoking a joint has the desired effect of taking away the stress of the day, while alleviating my aches and pains. Hip-hip hooray for no hangovers and a full night's sleep!

 

Smoking a joint? That’s so unhealthy! Correct, but we all have our crosses to bear and mine is the love of looking like a badass James Dean smoking in a leather jacket. Quote this article when I develop the black lung. Alas, smoking isn’t even the most popular way to ingest cannabis now! My absolute favourite part about using cannabis is that the world is your metaphorical oyster. Sublingual oils, concentrates, and edibles, oh my! Currently under health canada’s laws, approved companies can only sell dried bud and sublingual oils, but you can also tweak these two things to make your cannabis work for you. Use a hair straightener to make rosin, use your slow cooker to infuse coconut oil, whatever you like. Girl’s just want to have fun, after all.

 

Julie Vickaryous XOXO

Blogging with purpose...We are MWSE.

Photo by deMo Photography

Photo by deMo Photography

Where did September go? It whipped past us like a quick breeze, and just like that the fall air has become ever so present. The leaves changing are sure signs that the summer is in the rear view mirror, and for many of us this equals more daily structure.  My favorite time of the year - I feel so at home with routine. This is particularly true when it comes to school, family activities, and work. We as a women fill our calendars with to-do lists and start to close up our yards and summer wardrobe for the imminent snow (i feel it wont be long...) It is also a new season for the Modern Woman Show and - the MWSE Blog. 

With great excitement and anticipation the show also welcomes a new leader. Kaila King from King's Court Events has taken the wheel and will steer the show into its fifth year and beyond.  Kaila is a dedicated wife and a full time mompreneur.  She is no stranger to hard work and has established and produces six other events yearly under the King's Court name.  She thrives on planning, schedules, and is a lover of lists. Some would call her a one woman show because she does it all - bookkeeper, office manager, and also helps run her husband's company. In her free time she can be found playing with her children - Kali & Owen, volunteering for her son's preschool board, and is currently training to be a doula. Kaila is proud to support numerous charities but has especially focused on donating funds from the Modern Woman Show to the Family Fertility Fund of Sask. We are so excited for her to add her knowledge and experience to the Modern Woman family and know that her interest in supporting local businesses and entrepreneurs of all ages is the perfect addition to the Modern Woman Show.

Photo Courtesy of  Lovestruck Portraits

Photo Courtesy of Lovestruck Portraits

It's full steam ahead with the 2018 event planning and this means some new topics to discuss on the blog. We have some new voices that are sure to connect with our ever growing readership. Without any further adieu I would like to introduce you to our team of fabulous collaborators. These women are all unique with a story to tell. It has always been my advice to our blog team to write with passion and to always blog with purpose.  The team and myself are looking forward to doing just that.

 
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Kelsey Connell

Kelsey is a former journalist turned stay at home mompreneur. She makes all natural skin care products but in February 2017 recommitted herself to her true passion: writing. Her blog, What We Don't Do, went viral in March 2017 after writing about her miscarriages. She focuses on the raw, vulnerable side of infertility, motherhood and trying to find her place in the world as her passionate, authentic self.

 
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Julie Vickaryous

Julie is a new addition to the Modern Woman team this year. Julie specializes in advancing the medical cannabis field right here in Saskatchewan as a senior cannabinoid therapist with National Access Cannabis. When she's not teaching cannabis cooking classes or information seminars, she's writing, ranting and raving about feminism and women's rights. At only 24 years old she is one of Canada's youngest breast cancer survivors, and is constantly doing her part to spread awareness about the disease.

 
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Mandy Gourlay

Proud mama and blogger for Before the Blonde, Mandy has an eye for all things fashion & beauty. She's also been walking the catwalk for the Runway Show since 2015. This year she's joining the MWSE blog to bring you fashion-focused features and a sneak peek of the vendors you'll see at the show!

 
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Katie Martin

Katie is the Fashion Show Co-ordinator for the Modern Woman Show & Expo and has a passion for the job as it allows her to work closely with hardworking local vendors, sponsors, models, and volunteers, providing positive team leadership and a sense of friendship among the woman involved in the event. She is a full-time Esthetician & Makeup Artist, part-time Photographer, dog lover, wine drinker extraordinaire, and self-proclaimed Comedian. Follow along with her often humorous "tell it like it is" style of blog posts this season as she partakes in new and exciting activities focusing primarily on the importance of self care.

 
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Jocelyn deMoissac

meet jocelyn. A professional wedding and documentary lifestyle photographer and mentor. Specializing in the real and raw moments of life. She’s a passionate dreamer and get shit done’er. No stranger to the red wine and always surprised everyday at 4:30pm that dinner has to be made. A proud wife to Steven, blessed momma to Sloan, Harlow and Enver. You can catch this crew having daily dance kitchen dance parties and soaking up all the outside time possible at the lake, on the trails or in the backyard. When the camera batteries are charging you can find Joc making the most of the long days and short years. She is truly honored to document some of life's most incredible and huge moments and is always looking forward to meeting new smiling faces.

 
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Megan Hammond

Megan is the creative force (and hands) behind Elizabeth.lyn jewelry. A self taught jewelry designer with entrepreneurial blood, she has both owned and managed several retail businesses before turning eL from a part time hobby into a full time career. She is currently learning how to balance working from home and momming full time to one year old son Asher... #staytuned. 

 
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and myself, Chantal Schulte

Chantal works as the marketing director and cosmetic laser technician at Midwest Laser Centre. She also spends her extra-curricular time pulling shoes away from her dog Wrigley, hosting dinner parties for her family and friends, and sampling the latest fare at Saskatoon’s up-and-coming restaurants; as the founder of the Modern Woman Show she is INSPIRED daily of every vendor’s road to success and greatly appreciates being apart, in any capacity, of their journey.

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 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! 

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! 

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!

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

You CAN sit with us.

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Uh. That sinking feeling. A bit of anxiety. Knots in your stomach. The feeling of a little (sometimes a lot of) DEFLATION. And the innate desire to "squash them". 

What is it that I'm referring to? A new store has opened. A new product has launched. A direct competition. Your competition. Dang it. What does this mean for you? What will you need to change or improve to win the consumer's business. How do you keep your edge???? 

Being an entrepreneur is hard. Holy H E double hockey sticks. Competition is frightening but it is truly necessary and I want to share with you why -

"Competition is a good thing, It forces us to do our best.

-Nancy Pearcey

Change the way you think about your competition. The reason why you're in business is because you are offering a product or service that people want.  I call these people your tribe. Your tribe isn't just looking at the necklace you're selling but probably has similar values to your company. Maybe your tribe is environmentally conscious and the necklaces you make out of recycled materials hits them in the sweet spot. It is no longer just about a necklace. Boom you have built a relationship. Your relationship with your tribe is more important than anything else. Your competition most likely has their own values and it's not that often that they lineup exactly

I have a few examples of this in my world of business. I wear a lot of hats - from the world of managing cosmetic laser clinics to tradeshow producer to hotel owner. They are very different but one thing remains the same - I know my tribes and I value my relationships with clientele in each of them. I provide the best service I can in each industry and never trade my reputation for money

So what happens when your competition starts "biting your shit"? Imitation is flattery. It also pushes you to continue to be innovative. This is why you're an entrepreneur!! You are most likely a go-getter. A stagnant business is a closed business. Find your niche. Grow it like only you can. Recently I received a colorful review from a competitor. It was broadcast for all to see that they felt I had "copied" their business model. The truth was that I might sell a similar service but my values, integrity, ability to be innovative is what sets me apart. Also....to anyone who thinks writing poor reviews on your competitions social media site is valuable you should just stop reading this and basically take a hike. 

Understand that some competition isn't actually competition at all. You may be able to form some pretty sweet partnerships. A key example of this is my relationship with Michelle Strawford from Regina's What Women Want Tradeshow. She produces a successful tradeshow for women, she is well respected (this chick has INTEGRITY), and is always innovative. When asked by businesses what other shows I think they should be apart of I will always suggest hers because I value our relationship more than money. We have created a partnership through this and we are actually vendors in each others show's. Look for those opportunities. 

One upping is a waste of your time. March to the beat of your own drum. It is good to know what your competition is doing but you don't have to obsess over it. We get phone calls at our clinics inquiring all the time about our pricing, asking questions that only very very knowledgeable (within our field) people would ask and with the power of call display shows that they are coming from the phones of our competitors. Again FLATTERY.... but stop yourself from feeling like you have to play a game. Price wars are also a race to the bottom not the top. You may lose a few customers but in the long run you gain the business by educating your tribe. Creating the trust. Building the relationship.

Now, when you see another coffee shop open down the street - don't devise ways to burn it down. Grab a few slices of your grandma's famous lemon cake (don't give them the recipe but maybe see if you can become their supplier) and welcome them to the block. 

Chantal 

For those of you that want to join our Modern Woman "Tribe" we would love to have you! Our tradeshow takes place April 22nd & 23rd at Prairieland Park in Saskatoon, SK. We focus on promoting women in business throughout the year, we offer mentor-ship opportunities with experienced #GIRLBOSSES, complimentary social media reputation seminars, and a plethora of add-ons to capture the essence of your business and make you stand out to your target audience. Click Here to learn more about being a vendor and HERE to apply for Our Modern Hustle Mentorship Opportunity. See you all very soon ;)

 

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