The Saturday Weekly Review

Are basic mathematics skills are a must-have when dating? : The Saturday Weekend Review #112

The Saturday Weekend Review logo- mathNUMBERS DO MATTER!


I wonder if these online dating websites have “math” listed as a qualification one can check-off as a “must-have” for their desires in a partner.

It wouldn’t shock me because more and more people want partners that understand how to balance a budget and not send them to the poor house.

Times have changed and so have dating and relationships. With each new generation of lovers comes new problems that we all must face but one thing is for sure money will always be one of them.

Some may ask why understanding math is even a topic for discussion but it is a BIG problem for many couples who end up divorced or a relationship fails because they don’t “get it”, math that is.

I know you can all think of someone who spends money like it’s water but that water isn’t flowing in as fast as they are spending it. They simply don’t get the basics of math because if they did, they wouldn’t put themselves into such a terrible debt situation.

It was strange when my wife started to tell me about an article she read where a woman from New Delhi, India walked out of her wedding ceremony because her fiance could not answer a basic math question. I had read the same article and was going to tell her about it.

What is 15+6=? was the match question asked to the groom… he failed when he answered 17.

She went on to say she would not return to the ceremony because the groom had misled them about his education. Something tells me it was more about lack of trust for the bride but I’m sure future career and taking care of the family also came to mind.

Would it have been different if he was rich? Maybe…but not everyone is after what you have in your bank account.

I’m sure he’s not the first guy to lie about his education either. Why do men and women lie about their education level anyways? Because they want to seem smarter, more appealing to the opposite sex but then what happens when the truth comes out and it will?

It’s no different from people who lie on their resumes about their education level but rest assured that HR will find out. Some candidates might not get caught but when the time comes to show their stuff they’ll look like a right fool if they don’t know what they are doing.

The same goes with relationships… eventually you will need to put that education to work for you and if you can’t you’ll have some explaining to do.


My wife hated math


It ended up my wife and I read the same story as I was going to tell her about it because my wife was never good at math. She is the first to admit that math was NOT her strongest subject in high school.

She used to be quite upset that she didn’t understand math the way others did and at times considered herself stupid (such a harsh word but teens can be hard on themselves) because she ‘didn’t get it’.

“How come everyone else gets it but I don’t”, she would say to her parents. Mrs. CBB remembers growing up always struggling with math from a young age, even basic math in grades 1-8.

The help was not there for her nor did any of her teachers offer to help which seems odd that they would let someone slip through the system. Then again there are kids who have no idea how to read and managed to squeeze their way through.

Her parents tried to help but it was still a struggle for them because not everyone can teach the way someone needs to learn something.

It wasn’t until she was in high school and she narrowly passed 9th grade math and 10th grade math and then went on to fail 11th grade math twice that counsellors wanted to talk to her parents about getting a tutor for her.

You only needed 10th grade math to graduate back when she was in high school so all she wanted was to get in and get out. She had no motivation to learn math because by this point she was depressed and embarrassed that she needed help.

You have to understand my wife…. she never gives up so that was tough for her.

She sat with the counsellors to see what she wanted to do with her life after high school and why she was struggling with math. “If I knew I would have told them. I just didn’t get it“, she says as she remembers the time vividly.

By the time she was in grade 10 math she understood the basics but as it went a bit further into fractions, geometry and algebra she got further behind.

Not understanding math cut my wife off from plenty of potential career paths in her life. She never did get further with the counsellor so 10th grade math was as far as she made it with a 52% pass.

English was a VERY strong subject for my wife and she is far from shy plus she enjoyed drama, history and believe it or not science. My wife thought she was destined to work for minimum wage for life because she wasn’t smart enough to go on to University or College.

She did go on to college and she graduated and found work in her chosen career. That didn’t last long with cut-backs and a struggle to find a comparable role. Moving forward she worked her way up an organization where she was in a senior level role but that wasn’t good enough for her.

Remember, she never gives up and if she does she will go back and make it right especially if it’s something she is passionate about or close to her heart.


Tutoring high school math


When we were dating I found out about her hatred for math so being the math brain (joking) that I am I decided to teach her math. We enrolled her in part-time continuing education studies and picked up her homework for each level and completed it at home with me as her teacher.

I worked through the math with her but never gave her answers. I wanted her to do this on her own because giving her the answers solves nothing. She was very worried that she still wouldn’t get it.

At the end of each homework book there was a 3 hour in-class math exam that she had to do. I motivated her and told her she would do fine and to breathe her way through the exam. She tends to get upset when she forgets something she knows how to do.

To make an even longer story short she went on to graduate with grades in the high 90’s in grade 11 and 12 math which got her into University based program. She finished in a career that she would have done many years ago if she would have only understood math better.

If it weren’t for the one-on-one tutoring that she clearly needed from someone she connected with than she may not understand math the way she does today. She used to say to me…”I get it and it feels so good“.

It is a good feeling when you can solve a math problem but for someone who has struggled their entire life it was an amazing feeling to finally get it. Something just clicked… plus she was an adult and focused more than when she was in high school.

There was none of that peer pressure to be smart or with the “in-crowd” any longer because she was far gone from the cliques in high school. This time it was all about her and she succeeded.


Math, love and debt


When I married my wife although she was frugal her math skills were basic at best. Now she is further ahead and understands how to work through solving mathematics problems on her own.

Thankfully my wife wasn’t in any debt and when we started to budget we worked through the budget together. A budget really is all about basic math… addition, subtraction, division and multiplication. If you can get through the basics a budget should be a piece of cake for you.

When you are in love and are faced with dating someone who is knee-deep in debt you need to know about that up-front and decide whether you can live with taking on someone else’s debt.

One comment on the article about the bride in India who walked out on her wedding day because her groom couldn’t answer a basic math question was a comment that caught my attention.

If I had known how atrocious my ex-wife was with simple budgeting there is no way we would have married. After 5 years of blown budgets, credit card disasters and collectors for bills I had never heard of I said either she learns or she leaves.

This is what happens when you marry a princess who is too special to work but reminds you that there are more than 40 hours in a week, a hint that everything would be fine if only I would work harder.

This person would not have married his ex-wife had he of known that she was rubbish with a simple budget which I find interesting. Not all couples are willing to work together on things that they don’t excel in or don’t find the need to be part of like his ex-wife.

Then there are others who are married and supposedly in love and they just “give up” when the going gets tough like another comment read,

It is so true, when poverty knocks on the door, love flies through the window

It’s true when they say you need math to get you through life. You may not need everything you were taught depending on what you choose to do for a career but basic math will take you far in life.


Math makes sense


Now that math comes easier to my wife I’m happy to say that she loves budgeting and saving money and thanks me often for the effort I put in to teach her math. I was and still am in love with her and I would do it all over again if I had to.

In closing…

Mrs. CBB says, If you don’t have faith in your ability then no one else will either. If someone offers to help you to improve what would make you a happier person, don’t back away on the opportunity.

Was math an important subject for you spouse to know before you got married?


CBB Week At A Glance


We had a great week on CBB with traffic steadily going up which really makes me happy. I am still dealing with someone who has started a blog and stolen my content to use without my permission. Sounds idiotic but people do this stuff for a living. Time to get a real job!

At home I had a couple of well-deserved days off this week so the three of us went to a local pool to check it out. I’m hoping to start taking my son swimming in the next week or so. Prices were reasonable where I only pay for myself just under $4 per swim.

We also managed to get more photos of our son this week for Easter which we can’t wait to share with our friends and family. Other than that we made a quick trip into Value Village and The Goodwill to pick up a few goodies… A new CD for me and the wife found a mini muffin pan (brand new).

With the Spring-like weather coming in I can already see the amount of Spring cleaning I have to get done around the yard. That and garage sale season will be starting up again soon and I think we might just be holding one this year with all the baby stuff we have.

That’s my week… how was yours?


Published This Week


Just in case you’ve missed any of my blog posts this week I will link to them all below.

If you have a question that you would like to ask Mr.CBB fill out the Contact Mr.CBB form on the Home Page and send in your questions.

Mr.CBB (that’s me) will look in his mailbag weekly and pick a question to answer on the blog.

This week on Canadian Budget Binder:

A big thanks to Rob Carrick who writes for The Globe and Mail online for featuring a CBB post  “Peer Pressured Boy owes $30,000 in debt“, again this past week.


Popular This Week


I thought it would be fun to share the Top 5 pages and posts each week for those of you that are new reading Canadian Budget Binder.

These are in no particular order.


Fan Budget Brags


Submit your Deal or Brag:

Saving money while grocery shopping is essential in the CBB family and that’s why we share our grocery shops every week in The Grocery Game Challenge 2015.

What I love the most is when my fans share their amazing shops with me whether it be groceries or other deals they find at a garage sale, online or freebies!!!

If you have a brag that you want me to share email me at canadianbudgetbinder (@) [yahoo] [.ca] or fill out my contact form by Friday each week to have your brag considered for the Saturday post.

This week CBB fan DEE shares her super-charged price matching skills with all of us.

Hello Mr. CBB

I so love price matching, I love to see what I can get for how low I can get it.  I purchased the following:

  • Simply OJ (2.63 L) – RCSS = $ 6.99; Food Basics = $3.97; Savings = $3.02
  • 2 NN Cheese (450 g) – RCSS = $5.78; Zehrs = $3.99; Savings = $3.58
  • GayLea Sour Cream (500 mL) – RCSS = $2.69; Zehrs = $1.44; Savings = $1.25
  • 2 High Liner Fish Sticks (700 g) – RCSS = $6.98; No Frills = $3.97; Savings = $6.02 plus I had a $3.00 Coupon (WUB2) for a total savings of $9.02
  • Hellman’s Mayo (890 mL) – RCSS = $4.49; Zehrs = $2.99; Savings = $1.50
  • Kraft Peanut Butter (500 mL) – RCSS = $5.98 (Regular price) RCSS has it on sale for $3.98; Zehrs = $2.88; Savings = $3.10, so even with RCSS sale price, I still saved money.


Canadian Grocery Savings

If I bought those items at RCSS, it would have cost $32.91 but I only spent $19.24 for a total savings of $18.47 (without the coupon).


Making A Difference (MAD)


Note: If you are a personal finance blogger (anywhere around the world) and would like your blog to be MAD featured simply drop me an email and I’ll explain the process to you.

This is my way of giving back to the personal finance community through networking and sharing knowledge with my fans. Today I’d like to welcome Jeff !


Million Endeavour

Hello Mr. CBB and Readers!

My name is Jeff. I am the author at Million Endeavour and I have created this blog as a means of documenting my 7 year plan to become a Millionaire.

I started off my financial journey as someone who was stuck in a dead-end job with a salary of close to minimum wage and nothing to look forward to.

That was the moment when I realized that this was not what I wanted for the rest of my life. I knew I had to do something about it and I started to take an interest in personal finance.

The ultimate goal that I have set for myself is to quit my job and to start living off passive income. I want to have the freedom to pursue my dream of travelling the world without any financial constraints.

Over at ME, I share my experience (both good& bad) in portfolio, real estate and business investing. These are the 3 areas in investing that I believe will be crucial to my journey.

Currently, I am not longer in negative net worth and I am well on my way to maxing out my TFSA and RRSP. I am also in the process of investing in my first property and start-up business.

If you would like to follow along on my path to financial freedom or would like some inspiration for your own journey, I welcome you to check out my blog. Who knows, maybe you’ll learn a thing or two on the way. After all, I’d like to think that Million Endeavour has some value to offer!


Top recipe


homemade ferrero rocherFood  and grocery shopping is a BIG part of CBB because food is a large part of the budget that most people struggle the most with.

If you are someone who would rather buy convenience meals or products consider cooking homemade meals or baking from scratch.

Not only will you save money but you will be proud of what you accomplished and you’ll see that from the smiles on those you feed.

If you don’t already know I have a second Facebook page called The Free Recipe Depot where I share recipes from other Food Bloggers from around the world.

I created this second Facebook page because I love food so much and I wanted to showcase only food 24/7 and this is where I do it. I also share recipes on CBB once a week on Sundays either made by me or my in-house home blog cook Nicola Don!

With St. Patrick’s Day and Easter just around the corner I thought these lovely Homemade Ferrero Rocher Chocolates from Linda at With A Blast would be a lovely treat for someone special.


Editor’s Pick


Every week I will pick a blog post of the week from around the web that I found interesting and want to share with you and an Editor’s top blog post pick.

Editor’s blog post pick of the week goes to my friends over at Pretend to Be Poor with an interesting post “Life is Not About Your Preferences” which I think you should all read.

It’s amazing how many people are in debt because they CHOOSE to live a certain way even when they shouldn’t be.

I’ve talked to countless people who explain that they can’t save money because they don’t prefer to bag their own groceries, or don’t want to work with bone-in chicken, or don’t like driving an older car that might require inconvenient repairs. They prefer to wear clothes that are in style. They don’t prefer eating beans over steak.

A great read… check it out!


Google search terms


Every week I get thousands of people visit Canadian Budget Binder because they did a search online and found my blog. Keep in mind any spelling errors below are because I share with you the exact way they typed their search engine query to land on my blog.

  • I hate renovating my home– Then pay someone to do it or sell it and buy one that it is move-in ready.
  • Hot women only like big bank accounts– Haha, it’s not just women!
  • What time to look for stuff at a drugstore dumpster- Please don’t tell me you think they are throwing medication or drugs in the bin, haha! Not!
  • How to get Value Village perfumy smell off of clothes- I’ll be honest and say that I have never smelled perfume on anything at VV. It’s more like a musty smell. I’d say a good wash or two should sort it out. Lots of fabric softener too!

Thanks for reading The Saturday Weekend Review and Welcome to 2015 on Canadian Budget Binder!!


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  1. If you were substitute English for Math in this blog, that’s me. I stink at English but do fairly well with math. I could get by with my English Literature or any other English course I took thru high school so there was discussion about a tutor for me and I don’t think my dad could have afforded a tutor. English as a whole is okay but it’s the grammar that I stink at and still do, no matter how much I try to improve it.

    1. You and half the planet, myself included. We rely on autocorrect and the computer to find our errors. It’s horrible but we don’t take the time or have the time like we used to when we simply used a pen and paper.

      1. Actually it was worse when I used a pen and paper. About 20 years ago when I was in one of the colleges that I attended, I had to write a paragraph and it took me an entire week to write that paragraph. I had had to have certain types of sentences and not all simple sentence structures. At least with the computer and the grammar settings in the word document, I have a fighting chance of getting a sentence that makes sense and has correct grammar structure.

  2. The way they teach maths in English schools today bears no resemblance to the way it was taught thirty years ago. The three R’s, reading writing and arithmetic were taught almost by rote. Malaysia now teaches their children in this way and are having huge success in the numbers of children who get into Oxford and Cambridge. Food for thought.

  3. I had issues with math in high school, mostly grade 9 as the teacher was very good at math and had trouble understanding anyone that couldn’t understand it. He had a habit of teaching how to do something one way and then the next day showing an easier, more complicated way to do it….If that confuses you think how I felt!! If you don’t understand something and ask him to explain it again he would just look at you like you were stupid. I just barely passed the course that year.. I was not impressed to get the same teacher in grade 11 again. This time I ignored him and worked it out from the book by myself and had marks in the low 80’s. Hubby had trouble with the higher grades math in high school and took the courses later through correspondence and did very well on his own, getting marks in the 90’s.
    Teachers are human as we all are. It’s easier than you think to fall between those cracks. It used to be that if you didn’t do well enough in a grade or a class you failed….and repeated the same. Now they won’t fail a kid as it might affect the child’s self esteem…heaven forbid!! Thank you Outcome Based Education…. That was what was in the NDP’s Common Curriculum back a good number of years ago. I read those documents and I wasn’t impressed with them. I looked into a lot of this stuff back when things were in an uproar over the Harris government and such. I came very close to pulling my kids to teach them at home but things settled down and I let it go but I made it my business to know what was going on in the class rooms..
    I’m sure your little boy will love playing in the pool!!! My kids did as did the grandson!!!
    Had a look at the blog post and found it interesting!! Dee got some sweet deals!!!
    Have a good weekend!!

    1. My wife thinks you both had the same high school math teacher because that’s what happen to her and how she felt as well. What would you have liked to have seen done differently back when you were in school to help you understand math better? Did you get tutoring?

      1. I don’t think there was tutoring to be had back then… I wish I had figured out to work it out on my own in grade 9 as it helped so much in grade 11. Some teaching styles just don’t work for some kids unless you learn the way it’s taught. There is a lot better understanding of learning styles now than there used to be. Doesn’t mean you will be taught in a way that helps the student but that’s the way it goes.

  4. I feel lucky that my wife is an accountant and she knows how math works especially in budgeting. The down side of this is that she tends to do overdo it sometimes. But at least we have less problems and feel safe that we’re on the right track.

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