Dear Diary

Just before Easter Weekend, I got a financial kick in the $$$. I was invited to an event hosted by stnce, to promote confidence and women’s financial literacy. Although I was a bit intimidated, I was excited to put my money-making, saving and spending knowledge to the test.”

My journey with money has really taken off over the past couple years. I’m someone who always struggled with math and got a headache just from looking at a page of numbers (I tend to read price tags backwards which really negatively impacts my budgeting…) and though my dad always instilled the rule “never ever spend what you don’t have,” I found myself starting RAOP with no real income and a debt that would grow to over $7,000.

I ended up taking out a low-interest loan to pay off my credit cards, and everything just kept piling up until I finally started making money from my risky business venture. It was a scary time. But, when I started making bank I had a new-found interest in budgeting and keeping track of my finances. For me it took making a lot of mistakes to get my spending under control and expand my financial knowledge. With resources like stnce, you skip ahead to lessons learned, without the big losses.


STNCE is a new initiative by EQ bank designed to educate and build up women’s financial confidence. Through research they found that although the knowledge gap between men and women related to financial literacy wasn’t massive, the gap in confidence was – in fact only 30% of women felt confident in their knowledge. “That’s just not good enough, we can do better!”, Vice President Kim Kukulowicz stated in her opening presentation at the event last week. Clearly the audience agreed – the event sold out in a matter of days and the massive room at The Broadview Hotel was packed from wall to wall with women and their allies! “Women need to support women” she added before inviting the knowledgable panel of ambassadors to the stage.


I cannot sing my praises for this company enough. Seriously, I’ve been nothing short of amazed by every new tidbit I’ve learned (and there has been a LOT of learning!) Their website is designed so well and loaded with extremely helpful information (super into this “30 Day Track Everything Challenge“), their book suggestions are great (I sat beside Shannon Lee Simmons and her book “Worry Free Money” was a definite crowd favourite). Above all, I really admired their choice of ambassadors, a mix of female financial writers, money bloggers and entrepreneurs. The event included a panel discussion and a keynote of sorts given by Dragon’s Den star Michele Romanow, a woman who launched three businesses before age 30. Everything that came out of her mind was gold (literally $$$) but here are some of my favourite take-aways:

“Never be scared to ask the dumb questions. I always say I could ask the questions now and feel dumb, or wait a week and feel even worse.”

“Try not to take advice from people you don’t want to be”

“If you understand your finances you should never feel guilty about spending.”

“Spend on experiences vs stuff. Stuff doesn’t make people happy.”


Though I went in feeling fairly confident in my financial know-how, I walked away with a list of investment and mortgage questions to investigate, and a new found drive to take even more control of my business’ money. Last year I hired a kick a$$ all-female accounting team for RAOP, figured out an HST issue that my old bookkeeper kept neglecting all on my own and I’m still in the process of learning Quickbooks but I’m getting there. This year I’m thinking incorporation and smart investment!

For more information, visit!