Archive for the ‘03 “Associate Scoop”’ Category

Time to Get INTO The Monthly Organizer…Literally!

Posted on: November 19th, 2015 by Cathy Mendler No Comments

a-new-leaf-120x240.We usually feature an article by an associate here.

.For the months of November and December, however, we’re offering .our readers the option to place banner ads in our newsletter for all of .our 2016 issues.

.That’s at least 11 issues for the low price of $40 for the entire .year. We LOVE creating this newsletter for you, and we’re proud of .our high open rate.

.Send us an email before the end of December, and we’ll .send you the ad specifications and payment details.

October “Scoop”…What About Debt?

Posted on: October 20th, 2015 by Cathy Mendler No Comments

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We hear a lot about debt today: Personal debt is at all-time highs; government debt is out of control. What does it all mean? What’s the truth? Is all debt bad? Where do you stand?  

Understand Your Debt – It is most important to understand your debt. How did that debt occur? Was it a one-time event that was out of your control? For instance – were you out of work for a period of time? Is your debt increasing every month?  

Create a Cash Flow Statement – We could call this a budget; however, many people dislike the idea of a budget. Whatever we call it, it is imperative you know what is coming into your household on a monthly basis and what is going out. If your income does not equal your expenditure – it’s easy to see that your debt can increase every month. For instance, if you are $200 short every month – and that $200 ends up on your line of credit – you start one month with $200. The following month you add $200 and on and on – you get the idea. Not only is the debt increasing, but you have also added a bill payment that does not fit in the budget. Contrary to popular opinion – having a cash flow statement can be liberating because it creates knowledge and control. It means having a plan. Yes – plans create freedom.

Not all Debt is Created Equal – There is a big difference between debt that is creating an asset and consumer debt. When I speak about debt that is creating an asset, I’m talking about a mortgage on a home or a course you took that was needed for work or the vehicle you bought to drive to work. When I speak about consumer debt, I’m talking about the impulsive purchase of a big screen TV, a seventh pair of cute dress shoes or a new tool you think is really cool but that you might only use once. When your cash flow statement shows that you do not have enough flowing in each month to cover the expenses flowing out, there are two approaches you can take to fix this.

1. You may find there is a behaviour that needs to be addressed. I’m certainly not against big screen TV’s and shoes. What may need to be addressed is the impulse buying. Credit is readily available. This is a relatively recent phenomenon. Our grandparents had only one choice; save the money and then make the purchase. It’s so easy for us to see a great deal we can’t pass up and put it on a credit card. If there are a large number of impulse purchases in your history, you may have to look at these behaviours and put some limits in place. This is not to say that you can never do anything impulsive, but wouldn’t it be great if you had that worked into a budget, and you knew what discretionary funds you had?

2. You may find your purchases are all practical. You may find that you are actually doing great. You may also find out there is nothing in your cash flow you can give up. Perhaps there just is not enough money coming in to pay your bills. For instance, if you are always going to be $200 short every month, you have discovered you need to earn another $200 a month. This could be a second stream of income. This could be taking something you love to do and turning it into something to earn some extra money. Be creative.

Be Kind to Yourself – Be prepared to accept what you learn and take whatever steps are needed. Take control of your cash flow. Give yourself a pat on the back because you have examined the situation and are taking steps to correct it. Please do not berate yourself for your situation. It does no good to blame yourself. If you find your debt is unmanageable and you need help, there are organizations such as Consolidated Credit Counselling of Canada who offer counsellors that provide training to help you take control.

To test your knowledge regarding credit, follow this link.

If you need a financial plan to help you achieve your goals, send me an email. I’m here to help.


Lynn Whetham is a Certified Financial Planner and managing partner at Stepright Capital Planning Inc. in St. George, Ontario.


Our Next `Scoop` Could Be YOURS!

Posted on: September 22nd, 2015 by Cathy Mendler No Comments

..We publish articles written by our friends, clients and associates
..and YOURS could be next!
..If you have a great article to share from your newsletter, blog or
..ANYWHERE, send us an email with the article attached,
..and we’ll review it for publication in an upcoming newsletter.

We ALWAYS include your photo or logo AND a link back to your website or blog. AND we will feature your article in our blog and on our Facebook page as well.

We hope to see YOUR face in this section soon!

Submit your article here.

Associate Scoop: Eat Better, LIVE Better!

Posted on: February 19th, 2015 by Cathy Mendler No Comments

amysonnenberg (175 x 207).jpgLet me introduce myself. I’m Amy Sonnenberg–a mom, nutritionist and small business owner. When Cathy asked
me to contribute to her newsletter, I was thrilled to be able
to chat with you. I love any occasion when I’m able to talk about nutrition, and this is no exception!

Cathy is all about inspiring and empowering you to live your ideal life. In many ways our vision for our clients is exactly the same. We want to see YOU live your best life yet. For Cathy, that may mean helping you find order and a sense of calm in your surroundings. For me, it often means helping people eat healthier in a way that is enjoyable, delicious and easy to do. Nutrition advice can be confusing and sometimes conflicting. I believe that we are all individuals, and our nutrition needs are as unique as we are. My mission is to help you figure out what works best for you and your lifestyle right now.

What are some of my top tips for healthier eating?

  • Keep it simple. We aren’t all intended to be culinary celebrities with our own TV shows. There is beauty and freedom in simplicity. What are your favourite foods? Learn to cook them well in a way that is supportive to your overall long term health.
  • Plan your meals. I plan for 5 supper meals per week, so that I can still be spontaneous. I don’t usually plan breakfasts because I tend to keep those types of foods in stock. Lunches are often leftovers of some sort.
  • Make a grocery list. Check the cupboards before you leave home to make sure you actually have what you think you have. How many times have you gone to the cupboard to get an onion only to realize you are all out or they have spoiled?
  • Most of your grocery dollars should be spent on fresh foods such as local produce, meats and cheeses.
  • Avoid impulse purchases while at the store. Just because there is caramel sauce beside the apples doesn’t mean that it is a good idea to buy it.
  • Drink water! For many of us, most of our day is spent in a dehydrated state. Caffeine is dehydrating. For every one cup of coffee or tea, drink 2 cups of water.

With these tips in mind, you will be well on your way to eating better and making the most of your time in 2015!

Amy Sonnenberg is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist located in the Clock Tower Wellness Centre in Elmira, ON. Life can be complicated. Healthy eating shouldn’t be! Some of the services she provides are personalized nutrition assessments, grocery store tours, wellness seminars and home cooking lessons. You can contact Amy at DesignedForYouNutrition, or call 519-503-7926519-503-7926 for more information.


Yearly Self-Evaluation from Neworld

Posted on: February 3rd, 2015 by Cathy Mendler No Comments

compass_slantedOur associates at Neworld Coaching recommend a



Reflect on the past 12 months. It is NOT always enjoyable to look back and evaluate… But it is a necessary step towards growth and accountability.

Taking into account the five areas in the “Wheel of Life”… answer all of the following questions on a piece of paper.

  • Business
  • Financial
  • Personal Relationships
  • Health/Fitness
  • Self Mastery

What were your 3 biggest successes of the past year?

Did you  measure your successes in some manner (celebrations or other rewards)? If so… how?

What was your biggest failure?

What lessons did you learn from it?

What goals did you meet? (List up to the 5 biggest.)

What goals did you NOT work on?

Why did you choose not to work towards these goals?

Did you receive feedback from others (clients, associates, family) 
throughout the year? If so… what did you learn from it?

Did you save money toward Passive Income this year? If so… how did you invest it?

What progress have you made towards your Personal Relationships this year?

Are you more or less Healthy than you were a year ago? Explain why.

List 5 ways in which you improved your Self Mastery this year. (Self awareness… Self responsibility… )

What did you do to make YOU a better YOU?

List the 5 things that you are the most grateful for at this moment.


“Dream” about what life could BE like 3 years from today… After dreams are actually written down, they can be considered goals!

Using 5 pieces of paper… Title each with 1 of the areas of life.

Here are some guidelines:

  • Visualize and write your intentions in the present tense — as if you already have achieved what you want. “I earn x dollars” rather than “I will earn x dollars.”
  • Write down the first thing that comes into your mind without judging it. Follow your heart.
  • Use short, bullet points rather than narrative.
  • Start with blank pages and write all over them rather than using a linear format.
  • Use a variety of colors.
  • Write BIG and small.
  • Write on an angle, in an arc or even upside down.
  • Use plenty of drawings and graphics.
  • Do everything possible to engage your creative right brain in this process.
  • Be as clear and specific as possible.
  • The more specific your intentions, the easier it is for your unconscious mind to work towards creating them.
  • Rather than setting an intention to be “fit and trim”, set specific and measurable weight, cardio and fitness targets.
  • Intentions are like magnets… the bigger they are, the more they pull you forward.
  • Don’t worry if you are not clear… capture the thoughts you have even if they are vague.
  • These are intentions, not commitments.
  • You can go back and make changes anytime.

STEP # 3

Set a course for the New Year! Using your notes in the previous pages, begin to formulate a plan for the coming year.

We break it down into Quarters and plan 13 weeks of Goals for each.

Begin by choosing goals that you will accomplish in the first Quarter of the New Year.


P.S. If you need help formulating YOUR plan for the next year… actually DO the above exercise… I KNOW it will help you!

Busy, busy, BUSY!

Posted on: December 2nd, 2014 by Cathy Mendler No Comments

Omid_SafiDo you find yourself saying “I’m so busy”?

Many people can likely plead guilty to this question–including me.

My friend, Anne Day, shares her perspective on Treading water in this sea of busyness

Omad Safi shares his thoughts too in The Disease of Being Busy.

Think about what you can do differently in the next few months.

Summer Reading for Kids

Posted on: August 19th, 2014 by Cathy Mendler No Comments

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Have you heard about the Summer Slide? How about the Summer Brain Drain?

For the majority of students heading into the month of August, school is a distant memory and learning has taken a backseat to fun. Students deserve a break, of course, but two months (or more!) can be a long time to go without the academic stimulation that educational activities bring–even for the best of students.

Apart from planned group activities available and summer vacations geared to learning, most educators recommend that the best way to keep them academically engaged is to encourage our kids to read, read, READ!

Here’s an extensive Summer 2014 Reading List from that covers all age groups from toddlers to teens. Even you parents might find a few good reads on this list!

Happy summer and happy reading from the rewriter!

Deborah Plouffe is the founder and CEO of, a business dedicated to helping YOU find the words YOU need to say!

The Best Clean is Naturally Clean

Posted on: April 22nd, 2014 by Cathy Mendler No Comments


Today’s modern home is loaded with toxic and polluting substances designed to make domestic life easier. The cost of these commercial, chemical-based products can be high–causing long-term health concerns, poor inside air quality, and environmental pollution caused by their manufacture and disposal. As well, they can be very expensive. There are a growing number of safer commercial green products on the market. However, many of them still contain a number of toxic chemicals. Without knowing different types of chemicals and how the manufacturing process works, it is challenging to know what is safe and what is not. If you want to be completely “safe” in choosing products to clean your whole home, stick with the basics–vinegar, soap and water, and baking soda. Over time, these ingredients have proven to be completely safe and effective in cleaning your home.

Fresh Water

Nature’s purest cleaning product can work wonders in the home! In many cases, especially if the dirt or stain is fresh, flushing with lots of water will do the trick. Rinsing and/or soaking in water can lift off many types of dirt without the need for stronger chemicals.


Salt is a common household product that is not appreciated enough for its cleaning properties. Mixing salt with alcohol (one part salt to four parts rubbing alcohol) creates a great product for tackling grease.

Use salt when you have a redwine spill or find a bloodstain. “Salt is a fabulous stain remover, pour a generous amount over the stain and watch it absorb and lift the stain”.

Baking Soda

Baking soda (4 tbsp) and warm water (1 litre) is a good general cleaner. A damp sponge with baking soda will clean all kitchen and bathroom surfaces. Mixing baking soda with lemon juice, vinegar or even just some water and making it into a paste will create a great all-purpose cleaner and stain remover.

Baking soda is also an incredible deodoriser. It doesn’t just absorb odours, it also neutralises them as well–making it a great cleaner for the fridge. Sprinkling it onto carpets ten minutes before vacuuming will also help with any unpleasant lingering smells in the room–especially pet odours.


White vinegar is a great all-round stain remover, whether it is food stains in pots and pans, stains in toilet bowls, perspiration from clothes or scorch marks. Like baking soda, it is also a natural air freshener. If you have a room filled with smoke or paint fumes, place a small dish of vinegar in the room, or spray some into the air. This will help remove strong smells.

Lemon Juice

Like vinegar, lemon juice is mildly acidic and dissolves grease very effectively. It also has a bleaching and deodorising effect. Use lemon juice to remove smells and stains from cutting boards and clean many household items–from stainless steel cutlery to the kitchen sink! Combined with salt, it can shift a whole host of stains from fabrics. Rubbed directly into your hands will help you get rid of any stains from berry juices.


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Martina Schumann is the owner of Naturally Clean. At Naturally Clean, we believe that the way your home is cleaned can affect your well-being, as well as the health of our planet. Working with 90 clients a year over the past 6 years, we have perfected a unique 100% guaranteed green cleaning system that is more effective, healthier, and safer than traditional methods.

Warm Embrace Elder Care

Posted on: March 18th, 2014 by Cathy Mendler No Comments


Reflection and gratefulness are skills that we regularly see demonstrated by our wonderful clients at Warm Embrace Elder Care. We are often reminded to be thankful for all that we have, and to be appreciative for all of the small blessings that we unknowingly take for granted.

Our elderly clients, many of whom lived through very difficult times, know all too well how lean years feel. Many lived through the depression era when even basic necessities were in scarce supply. They lived in Europe during wartime and experienced shortages, rations and were in constant danger. When they immigrated to Canada, they had to start over building new lives. They learned how to savour every blessing, to be grateful for each miracle, and to never take anything for granted. Compared to the hardship that our elderly clients once faced, our current challenges seem very mild!

When our clients tell us stories from their youth–stories of courage, determination and gratitude–there is always a common thread. The stories are never focused around possessions or money or things. The stories are centred around the people who mattered most–family, friends and loved ones. The blessings that are most memorable, even decades later, are the blessings of the most beloved people in their lives. Honouring a friendship, caring for family, falling in love, raising a family, helping a sibling, being loyal above all else–these are the elements that truly matter. These are the blessings to focus upon; these are the blessings for which we should be most grateful.

Our clients teach us many important lessons, but gratitude and the importance of relationships would be at the top of the list. Take the time to reflect upon the relationships that are important in your life, and express gratitude to those people.

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Warm Embrace Elder Care is owned and operated by Brenda Hamilton and her daughters, Chloe and Avery. They assist seniors to remain independent for as long as possible through offering various services such as homecare, memory therapy, and one-on-one home exercise for seniors. Inspired by personal experience with family caregiving for Brenda’s mother, this mother-daughter team understands firsthand the benefits of enlisting help while caring for a loved one. Warm Embrace believes that independence does not mean that you can do everything by yourself, but rather that you get to choose how everything is done. We grant our seniors the respect and dignity they deserve by helping them to live as they desire.

Here’s how you can reach Warm Embrace Elder Care:

Phone: (519) 954-2480



Twitter: @WarmEmbraceEC


Action Habits for Entrepreneurs

Posted on: February 18th, 2014 by Cathy Mendler No Comments


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“Get going. Move forward. Aim High. Plan a takeoff. Don’t just sit on the runwayand hope someone will come along and push theairplane. It simply won’t happen. Change your attitude and gain some altitude. Believe me, you’ll love it up here.” – Donald Trump


How was YOUR year in 2013? Are you looking forward to 2014, or bogged down by dwelling on all the things left undone? Being in business for yourself can be a long, tough haul–especially in the early stages of entrepreneurship.

Keep in mind that your most powerful resource as an entrepreneur is your OWN mind. You alone will decide whether you will allow yourself to be torn down by fear and doubt OR allow yourself to surge forward with new ideas and create something wonderful! The best cure for the unmotivated mind is almost always action. Whenever you feel unmotivated, the very best remedy is to do something every day to move forward and to build your business.

Here are a few of the most important action habits that we can adopt to move ourselves and our business forward to the next level.

Be a doer, not a “do not-er.” Take a step–any step that will propel you forward. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a giant step or a baby step, as long as it is taken in the right direction.

Don’t wait for conditions to be ideal. There will always be barriers and obstacles in the way. Face them as they come up, but don’t let them stop you from getting started.

Do what you fear. There’s a better place on the other side of your fears, and the only way to get there is going through the action that you fear.

Celebrate your successes. Set small and achieveable goals that will keep you motivated to move forward, and make it a point to reward your accomplishments. Don’t forget about those huge, dreamy goals, though.

Slow and steady wins the race. Study the masters and make notes of what motivated them, as well as what characteristics led them to achieve greatness. Do your best to emulate and adopt these qualities, which probably include things like passion, self-discipline, integrity and hard work.

Remember that motivation is the often the result of action (NOT the other way around). The very best way to get yourself moving toward accomplishing your goals is…to get yourself moving!

Deborah Plouffe is the founder and CEO of, a business dedicated to helping YOU to find the words YOU need to say!