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Women of 2021: Sue Vivanco

Women of 2021: Sue Vivanco

When the travel and tourism industry took a major hit due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Sue Vivanco dove into entrepreneurship and started her passion project, Gigi Baby Boutique, with her sister-in-law Floria Thirasack.

While developing Gigi Baby Boutique, Sue and Floria created GIGI & Co., a luxury baby clothing line that would fit the needs of their own children. The clothing line, launching in fall 2021, emphasizes eco-conscious, Canadian-made designs and will be both functional and fashionable.

Most recently, the duo found a way to connect new and experienced moms. Sue and Floria are co-creators of the Facebook group, Mom*ish, a space to support moms and mommies-to-be when they need advice or an answer to a question.

Like many others, Sue felt the lack of human interaction while social distancing and isolating with her family throughout the lockdowns. The Durham Women’s Network provided Sue a space for continuous support from a group of women supporting women in business and personal growth.

As an XWN member, Sue has had the opportunity to access further learning experiences for self-development through downloadable programs like MaximizingU, created by Celina Caesar-Chavannes.

This year gave Sue the opportunity to enjoy quality time with her family instead of always being on the go. Throughout this year, the most powerful lesson she has learned is to slow down, enjoy the moment, and look at life through a new lens.

Follow Gigi Baby Boutique on social media:



Women of 2021: Davina Dixon

Women of 2021: Davina Dixon

Over the last year, Davina Dixon has taken the time to slow down and take time for herself. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, she always had a full schedule, pressuring herself to get everything done in one day and accomplish tasks perfectly. Since the lockdown, she has learned what it means to have self-compassion and determine what she can and can’t control.

Davina has been a part of the Durham Women’s Network since its launch in 2019, knowing immediately that she wanted to get involved with the group of women. The network allowed her to stay connected to women within her community that shared similar values to her own. This is reflected in her career choice, as she currently works with the Durham Region Social Services Department, where she serves residents within her community and ensures that government policies align with their needs.

Whether it’s through formal education or a local yoga class, Davina is a true believer in continuous education. The XWN membership through DWN allows her to do just that. She enjoys that the membership will enable her to try things she wouldn’t normally do within the community. Recently she was able to take part in the Virtual Full Moon Dance put on by Carol Baxter of the newly launched The Wyld School. She values the powerful event for the impact it had on her and her well-being for days afterwards.

While she has enjoyed being able to slow down and take time for herself and her family this year. She can’t wait for the day that she can travel again. She is looking forward to a time to book her next vacation, hopefully somewhere on a beach.

We Are All On This Journey Together

We Are All On This Journey Together

Hello beautiful One,

As we find ourselves in yet another lockdown here in Canada, many of us are struggling with all the feelings, fears, and trepidations about what is to come. We have all been through so much over the past year – with so many ups and downs as we try to understand what is happening and what we can do about it to stay safe; and keep those around us safe and healthy.

The past month has been an emotional roller coaster for all of us. I don’t know about you, but I’ve been struggling to hold it all together, and have been reliant on family, friends, and self-care to keep me strong mentally and physically.

I have come to realize how important it is to access all the “tools” available to me to manage these ever-changing times.

One of the tools available to us is getting back to nature. To the simple life.

This past week I had the opportunity to live in a yurt and a treehouse a few miles away from my home as a guest of my dear friends Paula and Geordie Lishman. It was pure magic. 

Kerri King
Bed in a yurt
Cleo Wade What the Road Said Book
Treehouse view

Although we aren’t sure where the road is leading at the moment, it’s so important to remember that we are all in this journey together.

Last night Jennifer and I had a great discussion with our friend and yoga teacher Carol Baxter. It felt so good to re-connect witas oh each other even though it was only virtually.

Carol is hosting a very special virtual full moon dance next Tuesday, April 27. Will you join us? As a member of XWN, you are invited to participate in exclusive events like this.

We would love to have you join us, and greatly appreciate your support for the work that Jennifer and I do for Durham Women’s Network by joining our membership.

Learn more about our FULL MOON celebration and join XWN today.

Thank you for sharing this remarkable journey with us.

Sending love and light.


You’re Invited to a Full Moon Virtual Dance Party!

You’re Invited to a Full Moon Virtual Dance Party!


Have you ever been to a full moon dance party?

One of the most memorable ones for me was in Ko Pha Ngan, an island in south east Thailand that’s renowned for its monthly Full Moon Party. 

In my early thirties I was fortunate to take several trips to South Asia with my brothers and sister. We would spend 3 to 4 weeks exploring rice paddies, temples, and inevitably would find ourselves in some precarious places. A full moon party was definitely one of them.

My sister Lori and I wrapped up one of our family trips with a trip to the Ko Pha Ngan with a couple of friends from Canada. We attended one of the famous night-long celebrations tied into the lunar calendar. This party draws revelers from all over the world, and is one of the most memorable travel experiences of my life. I have a photo (which I wish I could find) which captures the sense of freedom that I experienced. I was dancing with a complete stranger – and it is one of the most beautiful photos that I have of myself. True Freedom. Geez I wish I could find it!!

Sadly, all of these types of parties are cancelled due to the pandemic.

But for those of you who, like me, have a deep yearning for the connection and joy that you feel when you are dancing with a group of people, and feel that deep connection to yourself and the music, you can have a very similar experience in your own home right here in Durham Region.


On April 27, during the next full moon, my dear friend and yoga teacher, Carol Baxter is offering a very special FULL MOON DANCE PARTY to XWN members only.  I have had the pleasure of participating in many of Carol’s incredible workshops, and they always take me on a powerful, healing journey. I’ll admit, this full moon dance party will be different  from the boisterous celebrations at the full moon party on Ko Pha Ngan, but I do promise you that it will take you on a wonderful journey with women in our DWN community.

If you would like to learn more, Jennifer and I will be chatting with Carol via Facebook Live on April 19. We’d love for you to join us! 

As many of you know, the FULL MOON is a powerful time for manifesting, and for letting go of that which no longer serves us.

You may wish to use this sacred full moon energy that is upon us for the next few days to release the past, and surrender.  What would you like to let go of?

To assist you, here is an excerpt from one of Carol’s recent IG posts via @carolbaxterglow: 

Full moons always give us the opportunity to let go – and since this is the first full moon since the Equinox, the energy is especially powerful. This is an easy ritual that will cleanse, release and empower your intentions.


–          Light some sage

–          Open a few windows

–          Move through your home or sacred space gently with the burning sage

–          Bring in your intention for this new moon cycle through the spoken word.

–          “I release my thoughts that keep me from reaching my highest potential. Instead, I now surrender to the flow of the Universe, trusting that all things are working for my highest good.

–          Intuitively, continue this process, repeating the mantra at least three more times.

Sending full moon Libra blessings.

Wonder Woman VS The Sabre Tooth Tiger

Wonder Woman VS The Sabre Tooth Tiger

Spring is here–and there is so much to celebrate….

I’m sure I’m not alone in feeling an overwhelming sense of joy that the weather is warming, the sun is shining, and we are all starting to come out of winter hibernation and months of lockdown seclusion.

I think there have been challenging moments for everyone this past year, and because of that this spring just feels extra special to me. A time for renewal, and leaving winter (and the past) behind as new bulbs start to peek out of the soil, and new life starts once again. Hallelujah!

I thought I would write a little post to capture some of the discussion with the XWN group this past Saturday morning. For those of you who are not aware, the Durham Women’s Network launched an exclusive membership for women (XWN) who are looking for a greater connection, learning/ mentorship opportunities, personal / business profile opportunities and access to inspirational speakers, authors, and exclusive events.

This Saturday marked the last segment of best-selling author and DWN member, Celina Caesar-Chavannes’ Maximizing U course. Special thanks to Celina for making time for us, inspiring us, and gifting all of us with your special edition journal for XWN members only.

Celina kicked off our session by delving into the topic of FEAR, which one of my earliest mentors informed me stands for FALSE EVIDENCE APPEARING REAL. As a group. we deconstructed the notion of fear and Celina made reference to FEAR with a sabre tooth tiger metaphor. We talked about how fear can either push us to fight for what we want in life or it can can drive us to run the other way. (FIGHT OR FLIGHT). Then, Celina asked us to consider this question: “where do you put your energy?”

I shared that I have been doing some powerful self-inquiry work wherein I am taking a deep dive into a fear or darkness that I have likely been running away from (or burying) since I was a little girl. As painful as this process has been, the process of facing my fear has brought me a greater sense of clarity, understanding and freedom. It’s like I’ve just faced the sabre tooth tiger, and wrestled her to the ground instead of heading for this hills. This whole process has left me feeling rather like Wonder Woman!!!  

What sabre tooth tiger are you confronting in your life? Are you ready to look her in the eye?

Now in as much as it is important to do the self work, without the women in my life, I really don’t know where I would be. I am sure that I am not alone in feeling that the supportive conversations and learnings shared by the women in the first XWN cohort over the past couple of months has created a sense of connectivity, unity and strength that we all needed. Thank you to all of the wonderful women who I now feel such a genuine, close connection with. YOU ARE AWESOME!

There is something incredibly powerful about being in community with a tribe of women who’s sole purpose is to support one another – and to be able to give AND receive.

Moving forward, Celina has graciously agreed to join us for a monthly XWN group mentorship call. We plan to meet the third Saturday of the month at 11 a.m. for an hour with different topics of discussion.


If you are considering joining XWN and have any questions, and would like to discuss how we can support you, please reach out to us for a chat.  My commitment to the XWN community is to offer every woman a one-hour mentorship consultation either early morning or on the week-ends. It’s my way of giving back.  I have had the honour of quietly supporting leagues of women personally and professionally providing care and support for decades now. And it brings me great joy!

If I can be of service to you, please email me or text me at 289-356-6077 and we can set a time to connect.

Learn more about the XWN membership.

Learning and Growing Through the Pandemic

Learning and Growing Through the Pandemic

When you look back at 2020 what will you remember most? 

The past year has been a completely different experience for women across the world. For some, it has been challenging; for others, devastating. For me, it was an opportunity to reflect on my life and make some serious decisions. I almost feel guilty to say that I appreciate the year 2020 for all it has brought me. It wasn’t all easy—far from it—I just haven’t talked about it much. This year I looked inward and learned how to learn again, which has benefitted me in many ways. The constant hustle of pre-2020 had me spinning in different directions—not only me, but my kids. Understanding how important it is to be still and listen has evolved me to the place where I am today.

Today, I guard my time fiercely. I feel gifted with the amount of time that has come back to me as a result of the pandemic. As an introvert, this is something that I just can’t get enough of. Growing my business in the midst of a pandemic has meant more time to focus—and I do. I know what I need to be on top of my game. This includes the right amount of sleep, working with my support network and taking good care of myself. Of course, I miss people, but I don’t miss having mandatory plans each and every weekend. I feel the true pleasure of seeing a friend for an outdoor, socially distanced walk and no longer take it for granted.

Socially I have come into a fabulous group of women within Durham Women’s Network new XWN group. This intimate group is made up of women who are committed to personal and professional development, but most of all it has been the camaraderie of regularly scheduled Zoom calls that has been a highlight for me. I can’t wait until we can meet in person. Kerri King and I are planning some truly exclusive opportunities for this group moving forward. I can’t wait to share the details with the broader DWN network. If you’re considering joining this team of incredible women, I encourage you to do so now.

In the coming months, we are going to start highlighting members through full feature profiles so you can learn more about them, and their journey. Because, after all, DWN is a platform where we can elevate each other and celebrate our achievements collectively.