The Warmest Slippers Ever!!

Anyone who owns a pair of Padraigs can attest to the ultimate comfort, coziness and warmth of these Canadian made slippers.  They are ideal for your special baby or  grandma/grandpa or gift to self.  Comprised of wool, sheepskin and leather, these slippers are made of all natural products and they are hand crocheted and hand dyed in small lots in North Vancouver.  “Wool is thermostatic, meaning it has a unique inbuilt climate control. It both breathes and insulates keeping your feet warm in winter and cool in summer.”  Wool and sheepskin does not retain odours. The hide on the bottoms helps to preventing slipping and sliding on slippery floors. They are machine washable under gentle and warm with other clothes but let them air dry. They also look adorable and they become a family tradition to wear Padraigs. Check them out at

The Ninety Ninth Monkey carries Padraig slippers all year long.

Blog brought to you by:  Barbara Spencer, The Ninety Ninth Monkey, 905-620-0399,, 51 Baldwin St. Unit #1, Downtown Brooklin.


Which protein supplement should I use?

Of all the questions I get asked by my clients, “Which protein supplement should I use?” is at the top!  I know it’s confusing to choose the best product when the store shelves are literally bulging with containers boasting the best results and quality.

How can you really tell which product is best?

Check out this eye opening video on protein supplements

The good people at BioTrust just put out this eye opening and informative video on protein powders.  If you workout or want to lose weight and tone up then protein

supplements do certainly help – BUT only if they are not junk.  This video tells you what to look out for – watch it now <<<=====


Blog brought to you by:  TM Training, 905-425-WELL,,

Peace of mind during the holidays

Whether leaving the Canadian winter to spend the holidays under the sun or simply driving a few hours to get together with family, these simple measures can help your customers keep their homes safe while they are away:

  • Friends or trusted neighbours should check on your home - An occasional car in the driveway and a mailbox that is not overflowing may signal to a potential burglar that someone is home
  • Social media? Sharing holiday plans on social media might lead to an empty house getting unwanted attention
  • The thermostat should be set at 60°F/15.5°C and there should be enough oil in the storage tank to ensure that your house stays heated during cold winter days
  • Open bathroom vanity and kitchen cabinet doors to allow more heat to get to the plumbing

When it’s time to put on snow tires, it also signals the time to turn off outdoor taps!

Article courtesy of CHUBB Canada.

Blog brought to you by:  Greg Kruk, BComm, CPIB, CIP, James W Kloepfer Insurance Broker Ltd, T-1.888.231.2011  F-705.277.1611 , Brooklin Office – 905.425.0729

Staying Fit During the Holidays

Bring it on…the high-calorie food and drinks, that is!

Is that how you’ve approached this magical time of year? You’re not alone.

Most people lose sight of their fitness and fat loss goals entirely this month, only to have a rude awakening when their clothes are snug come January.

It’s really no wonder most people gain weight during the holidays.

Want to sidestep those holiday pounds? I’m here to be your voice of reason and to make sure that you don’t forget your goal. Stay fit this holiday season with these 3 steps:

Step #1: Get Re-Focused

The focus in so many of our holiday traditions is on food. This holiday season try to re-focus your attention away from food and back on to what’s really important—friends, family, giving, and religious traditions. Stay focused on the reason for the season rather than the plate full of hors d’oeuvres in front of you.

It’s important that you don’t lose sight of your dieting goals. Remind yourself of all the progress that you’ve made. Keep your goals in the forefront of your mind. Be aware that the holidays can be a time of emotional eating. Sometimes stress, family conflict, or even depression can be triggered. If this happens to you, try to address the root of your problems with solutions other than food or drink.

Step #2: Use Strategy

It’s important to use strategy when approaching the many celebrations held this time of year. With night after night of parties and events, you’ll need to pace yourself in order to keep your diet on track.

The most obvious, and effective strategy is to not arrive at the party hungry. Instead, eat a small low-calorie snack ahead of time to prevent overeating. When it’s time for extreme measures, wear tight-fitting clothes around your waist so there’s not much room for expansion!

Another idea is to chew gum before and after a meal, so you won’t be tempted to overindulge in appetizers and desserts. During the party, don’t stand right next to the food table, instead keep a safe distance. And before you get a plate of food, choose your selections wisely. Use a small plate instead of a large dinner plate and don’t go back for seconds!

Another important strategy is figuring out how to get in the gym between parties. Finding room in your busy holiday schedule for exercise will help you fight off the extra weight trying to attach itself to your midsection and rear.

Step #3: Moderation, Moderation

I’m not suggesting that you deprive yourself of all the foods you love, as this will likely lead to a spurge that ruins all your good intentions. Be smart about what you choose to eat. Enjoy the goodness of the season, but in moderation. Trim calories where you can by limiting your trimmings-cheeses, gravy, sauces, creams, and nuts.

Some of your favorite indulgences may only come around this time of year. This may cause you to want to overindulge before it’s too late. Instead of stuffing yourself, survey what foods are available and make your choices. Indulge in your favorites and leave the everyday dishes for another time. Only eat what you love, and don’t just eat something because it’s on the buffet.

Also, be sure to limit the amount of alcoholic beverages you drink. While you may not know it, they’re filled with calories, too. Try alternating an alcoholic drink with a non-alcoholic drink.

Follow these simple tips, and you will avoid holiday weight gain this season and start 2014 off right!

Blog brought to you by:  TM Training, 905-425-WELL,,

on being adaptable










its safe to say from day to day we live our life in three worlds:  yesterday, today and tomorrow. All three equally important, but only one of them we can change. Where we stand right now.

Being adaptable:  able to change or be changed in order to fit or work better in some situation or for some purpose (Merriam-Webster). Dance forces one to be adaptable-physically and mentally-to one’s abilities, movements, choreography, distractions…the list is endless. “Dancers, like all performing artists, like nothing better than to be challenged.” (Karen Kain)

Where we stand right now. Whether we wear pointe shoes or Converse runners, we have the ability to adapt. Find your change and make it happen.


Brought to you by: Petrina Bainard, Prima Dance Academy, Studio# 905.425.2828

Certified Financial Planner – CFP

Financial planners advise clients on how best to save, invest, and grow their money. They can help you tackle a specific financial goal—such as readying yourself to buy a house—or give you a macro view of your money and the interplay of your various assets. Some specialize in retirement or estate planning, while some others consult on a range of financial matters.

Don’t confuse planners with stockbrokers — the market mavens people call to trade stocks. Financial planners also differ from accountants who can help you lower your tax bill, insurance agents who might lure you in with complicated life insurance policies, or the person at your local bank urging you to buy their mutual funds.

Anyone can hang out a shingle as a financial planner, but that doesn’t make that person an expert. They may tack on an alphabet soup of letters after their names, but CFP (short for certified financial planner) is the most significant credential. A CFP has passed a rigorous test administered by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards about the specifics of personal finance. CFPs must also commit to continuing education on financial matters and ethics classes to maintain their designation. The CFP credential is a good sign that a prospective planner will give sound financial advice.

Blog brought to you by:  M2Financial, 20 Baldwin street Brooklin, 905.665.0999, 

Involved in an Accident?

Here’s what to do next.

Posted by MIS Blog (September 19, 2013) – Courtesy of IBAO

Accidents happen and vehicle collisions, whether large or small, can be very stressful and overwhelming. The first thing to do if you are involved in any sort of accident is to remain calm. Call 911 immediately if someone is hurt, if you believe the other driver is a dangerous offender or if there is significant damage to either vehicle.

Immediately move your car off the main roadway and turn on your hazard lights. Most importantly, NEVER admit fault of the accident, sign any documents regarding fault or promise to pay for the damages.

On site, remember to take down the following information:

  • - Date, time, location and road/weather conditions
  • - A brief description of what you believe happened
  • - The driver’s name, driver’s license number, address and telephone number
  • - The owner’s name, driver’s license number, address and telephone number
  • - The vehicle make, model, year and license plate number
  • - A brief description of the damage on each vehicle
  • - The driver’s insurance company name, policy number, broker name and policy expiration

IBC has made it easy with this convenient form which you can fill out following your accident and send to your broker so they have all the information on file.

Remember, brokers are easier and faster to reach now more than ever. Many now have mobile apps which you can use if you are involved in an accident. You can contact your broker directly from the app; you can report an accident, take photos, report claims and more. Contact your broker for assistance in downloading the app today.

Blog brought to you by:  Greg Kruk, BComm, CPIB, CIP, T-1.888.231.2011  F-705.277.1611 , Brooklin Office – 905.425.0729

seize the silence

The times when one is not dancing, seems to be the time a dancer thinks the most about dancing. As you sit in the studio with our students they always want to talk about dance, watch a ballet video or practise their choreography in the lobby. Like a photographer who always sees the photo opt, an actor rehearsing their lines or a pianist air playing a set of notes–their passion consumes them.

Often Mrs. K has used the term “screensaver” when the students seem to have a blank look on their face mid-instruction. It can mean a great deal of things to all of us who use that one direction stare. It seems like the lights are turned off inside and no one is home. But what if it is a break for our mind. A time to reflect and turn off the all the sensory stimulation by not making our eyes or ears work. A moment to be silent.








Ballerinas on Window Sill in Rehearsal Room at George Balanchine’s School of American Ballet

After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.”
Aldous  Huxley

One of the most beautiful things about dance is the absence of words. The language that is silent, but translated through movement. Think for one moment, what it would be like to hear mostly silence? Music is what your heart hears and your body transforms into dance:

Brought to you by: Petrina Bainard, Prima Dance Academy, Studio# 905.425.2828

Long term mortgage rate reduction possible

Bank of Canada signalled Wednesday it won’t be raising rates — its neutral stance could even mean  lower rates.

The possibility of long-term rate reductions has people worried the market may be recovering too fast for the taste of Ottawa, leaving Finance Minister Jim Flaherty with no choice but to tighten lending rules again.

Experts in the industry say it’s possible interest rates will go down, adding there’s a huge amount of mortgage debt already in the pipeline that was created when people took advantage of rates they were pre-approved in the summer.

With no panic to buy now that there is no pressure to raise interest rates, the question is whether people will be encouraged to continue to take on more debt or slow down their spending if the economy slows?

It is believed that Ottawa is already talking about more restrictions to the mortgage industry if there isn’t the expected softening in the housing market .  It would be their only option to slow things down if the Bank of Canada remains reluctant to raise rates.

Brought to you by Allyson McConnell, The Mortgage Centre, Toll Free: 1-888-425-1580,

Renting a Car?

Renting a car? Buying the over-the-counter insurance that rental car companies sell could be the dumbest move you’ve made all day. That is, unless it’s the smartest.

The question is, are you covered? Too many travelers have no idea, and it’s in that cone of uncertainty that the rental car companies are able to pounce and profit.

If you don’t know, for example, what liability coverage your own auto insurance policy provides, or whether your credit card is any use in times of rental car trouble, then why, the agent will be asking you, would you want to drive off the lot without peace of mind? Why indeed.

Trouble is, peace of mind doesn’t come cheap. Think hundreds of dollars added to your weekly rental costs, which are already skyrocketing, as competition goes all but extinct in the more-consolidated-than-ever rental car industry.

Here’s what you need to know about insurance:

Are you the owner of a car?

Yes? Great. Then you probably have an insurance policy. You’ll say this to the guy behind the counter. He’ll counter with: Do you know if your coverage is adequate? Are you going to be stuck with a huge deductible? They’ll throw it all at you. And if you can’t answer the questions confidently, suddenly you’ll be thinking maybe I should be buying the insurance here, because, really, what if something happens and I’m not covered?

Stop. Stop it right now. Before you leave home, examine your policy documents or call your insurance provider and ask questions like: Am I covered for damage, theft and loss of use? Liability for injury to others (personal and property) while in the rental car? Personal effects if stolen or damaged? How screwed am I, as regards deductibles and such, if I find myself in any trouble related to the above? You should know the answers to all of these questions.

Coverage through your credit card? Maybe. Probably not.

Too many people think that their auto insurance policy plus their credit card coverage benefits equals all set. Again — maybe you are, maybe you’re not.

Have you read the documents? Too many renters learn the hard way that what most credit cards provide is “secondary” coverage, meant only to bulk up your auto insurance policy, paying out after that has been exhausted. Your Visa card, for example, can be a great asset, but if you don’t follow all their rules, the very thing you think is going to keep you out of trouble might end up leaving you in a world of hurt.

Across the board, it’s wrong (really, really wrong) to assume that one size of coverage fits all card brands. Some higher-end MasterCards might be great. Other card levels may offer little protection. Examine each card document carefully. Finally, note that credit cards tend to mostly offer collision, damage and theft coverage, if they offer anything at all. Personal liability (hitting a pedestrian, crashing into a store front, or injuring drivers in another car) and personal effects are generally your problem. Again: Read.

So you’ve got nothing.

Say you go over both your auto insurance policy and your credit-card documents. Say you now fully accept that rental car-wise, you’re less than protected. Don’t just wing it — winging it can lead to all kinds of trouble, such as you being stuck with a bill for thousands of dollars or a huge jury award.

Besides upgrading your credit card to something more useful and bulking up on your auto insurance you can also sign up for primary coverage with a third party (but again, this will only be coverage for damage to the rental car, it’s not personal liability coverage).

What is this “primary coverage with a third party”?

It’s a separate policy that protects you when you rent cars. Maybe you are protected with your credit card and your auto insurance policy, but if you get into an accident and have primary coverage elsewhere, you can leave your insurer out of the loop entirely, avoiding any potential rate increases.

American Express cardholders can purchase a Premium Rental Car Protection policy for less than the cost of one day’s damage waiver in many destinations. For $24.95 per rental period of up to 42 days — $17.95 if you live in California — you’ve got $100,000 in coverage for damage and theft, plus $100,000 of Accidental Death or Dismemberment coverage, $15,000 for excess medical expenses and up to $5,000 for personal property loss. The real deal here? No deductible. Nada. It’s a good policy. Best of all, it kicks in automatically when you begin your rental using that card. When you do, you’ll be surprised at how easy it is to stop agents in their tracks — most know about the policy. Tell them you’ve got it and they’ll generally understand that they’re dealing with someone who has come prepared.

But what about liability?

As long as any accidents involve just you and, say, a lamppost, you’re now well and truly protected. Bump into a billionaire in a supermarket parking lot, however, and you may not be adequately protected, liability-wise. Many drivers lack the proper liability protection, often assuming that they’re safe, hiding behind their homeowners or renters policies. More than once, after hearing about all the coverage we’ve got, the rental car agent has asked the question, “What about liability?”

While rental car companies are required to build basic liability protection into their rates, they won’t tell you this. Generally, you’re going to be fine in a fender bender situation, but if you find yourself in some horrible scenario where you can be sued for lots of money, then make sure you are covered (if you’re a high net-worth individual, you probably have an umbrella liability policy, which should be enough, but check with your agent).

For those who are not covered, the agent will be happy to sell you Supplemental Liability Protection, often quite reasonably priced at about $10 per day. Then again, liability protection isn’t something you should be sorting out on the fly with some kid at the Enterprise counter — this is a matter for your insurance broker.

Original Article in Seattle Times

Blog brought to you by:  Greg Kruk, BComm, CPIB, CIP, T-1.888.231.2011  F-705.277.1611 , Brooklin Office – 905.425.0729