Welcome to Cowtown

What a whirlwind few weeks it’s been. I’m exhausted already! For those of you just tuning in…I uprooted my life in Ontario for a new job in Alberta.

I started out my journey to Calgary by dipping across the upper U.S. States and zipping across through Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota and Montana.

What an adventure that was. I ate Chicago style pizza, visited Mall Of America and stopped in a bar that had swimming mermaids as entertainment. The trp was slightly boring, but I made the best of it by singing at the top of my lungs and spending a lot of time thinking about stuff.

I arrived in Calgary and of course the first thing Courtney does is pop open a few bottles of wine and put on Showgirls. Just like old times.

I had a few days to organize myself, although most of my paperwork for my car and license is still waiting to be filled out. I have no proof of residency yet, making it impossible to get any of my official documents. Work started Thursday and here we are at Monday. I can’t believe how fast time is going by.

Today I was taken by surprise when my boss told me the team is headed out to Vancouver for a Canon launch event, myself included! My fourth day and I’m jetting off to Vancouver, how glamorous! So far the job is great, lots to take in and it’s a bit overwhelming, but everything I’ve learned over the past few years is definitely going to be useful. Sometimes I forget how much I know about social media, marketing and advertising.

That’s it for now…time for dinner and some relaxation until I set off to Vancouver. See you on the West Coast!

New Year, New Adventures

As I sit down to write my very first blog for 2012, there is so much happening behind the scenes in my life. At this point, I cannot discuss in detail. But give me a week or so and you’ll know exactly to what I’m referring to. I’ve been attempting to stay sane after being home for just over a year now. The urge to pack up my life and take another grand adventure seeps out of my pores 24/7. I’m happy to FINALLY be working in advertising and getting experience with social media. A few years ago if you told me I’d be getting paid to be on Facebook and Twitter all day I would have laughed in your face. At times, I truly feel there is an unseen force guiding me in the direction I’m meant to be. Two years ago the job I’m doing right now didn’t even exist, and 2012 is going to be a year of massive change for companies and the way they use social media. It’s a good career to be working in, with lots of prospects down the road. Other than finally getting a job, 2011 was a tough year for me. But for every part of 2011 I didn’t enjoy, I did learn and grow a lot because of my experiences, so it wasn’t a total write off. And I do remind myself that at the end of the day, I’m better off than 99% of the world, so I’m very thankful for that. Here’s a very quick recap of  my 2011.

I was unemployed for a bit and applying like mad to advertising agencies, I got a few calls and interviews. Interview A was for an internship at a really shady web marketing firm. I told them thanks but no thanks. Interview B was for another internship that I bombed in the interview mainly because the person interviewing me didn’t really click with my personality. Odd considering I can get along with almost anyone. I then had two interviews for real jobs at BIG, MASSIVE, advertising agencies in downtown Toronto. The first was for a media assistant position, which I knew was totally unqualified for, and went to the group interview for that. Had to talk about myself to the group and write a geography and math test. Ended up not getting that to no surprise.

I had forgotten I applied at Apple Retail while still in Florida, and they gave me a call in February. I went on a group interview (very similar to Disney), followed by an interview with the store manager. I got hired, went through 4 days of Apple Brainwashing and started at Apple Square One shortly after. I only lasted 2 months until I decided it wasn’t for me. Needless to say, I didn’t enjoy getting screamed at in person and over the phone because people’s products didn’t work. this was 85% of the job. This coming from someone who has worked at Disney and Shoppers Drug Mart and has been in almost every possible crazy customer situation. I met with the store manager and told her why I wanted to leave and she was great and fully understood.

During the time at Apple, I got an interview for an account management position. I had 5 different interviews: Human Resources, 2 Account Managers (separate), another Account Manager who flew from NEW YORK CITY to meet me! And finally the Account Director on the phone from NYC. After the excruciating wait to find out my future, they went with the other person. Mainly over a bit more experience. To say I was crushed is an understatement, but I got over it.

I decided to head out to Calgary for the summer and try working out there. I packed my car, drove across the U.S. and Canada and arrived at Craig’s house. The living room became my bedroom, and we spent a great deal of time drinking, laughing and having a great time. Sadly, I couldn’t find work out there, but did apply for an advertising agency here in Ontario and ended up getting hired there. After 6 weeks in Alberta, I packed up again and drove home. I’ve been here ever since and am glad to be working in the advertising industry. My life isn’t that exciting at the moment, but I know it’s just a lull. Everything goes in cycles, and I’m in the part where it’s just about to reset.

I’m headed to Florida in a week to see some of my best friends and have 9 days of adventures. I also started a blog, Theme Park Canuck, to showcase my blogging skills and passion for theme parks. It helps keep me busy, creative and inspired.

I’m not sure what’s in store for me in 2012, but signs point to awesome.

P.S. Something I want to start doing is a recap of the notable events each week. Mainly because I’m lazy and bullet points are faster 🙂

Highlights of my week:

  • The return of my favourite blog ever, The World According to C-Mac. A great friend of mine took a tiny break (a year and a half to be specific) from writing her fantastic, hilarious and inspirational blog. Even if you don’t know her personally, it’s a great read.
  • Planning my Florida adventures. I leave on Saturday and couldn’t be more excited to visit great friends, have some awesome adventures and be in my happy place.
  • Discovering the television show Shameless when I was sick this week. So good I watched 13 episodes in 3 days. It’s about a totally F-ed family that shocks after every turn. Starring William H. Macy as the screwed up dad.
  • Secret project in the works. Please stand by.


Hello Employment!

Today was my very first day at my brand new job as the Social Media Coordinator/ Writer at a great communications company right near where I live. It was a pretty packed day, with a couple of meetings scattered here and there. It’s a lot of information to take it, but this is the exact type of place I have been trying to get my foot in the door with for about 2 years. The highlight of my day was sitting with the team and going over what companies that had sent us RFP’s (request for proposals) to gain their business. We were discussing strategy, concepts, ideas, campaigns, research etc. I was in complete heaven! So far so good. There are many factors involved in why I can tell this job is going to be perfect fit, including the following:

  • 15 Minute drive from home (suck it 401 and GO Train!)
  • Small company, meaning lots of opportunity to work on many projects
  • Passionate, driven and focused team
  • Learning new things everyday
  • The best part is that this job is so new the opportunities for advancement are endless

The best part is that we are gearing up for the busy season, meaning I doubt there will ever be a dull moment. (Flash forward to me pulling out my hair in a months time!)