Friday, December 31, 2010

So Long, 2010! It's Been a Time!

As 2010 draws to a close and we prepare to welcome 2011, it's time for me to reflect on what's happened in my life during the past year. This time last year, I had decided that 2010 would be The Year of Elizabeth, and I have to say, I actually managed to live up to that in regards to a lot of things!

There were some ups, some downs, but I certainly wasn't out. After everything that's gone on, I still think it's been one of the best years yet. :)

Here are some of the highlights:

- Completing the craziest year of school of my LIFE and graduating from Humber College with my PR certificate

- Turning a quarter of a century and and having a fabulous 25th birthday weekend, complete with a surprise visit from my brother Dan who flew up from Newfoundland for the day

- Really making the move to Toronto and moving into my first apartment ever (While I did move to Toronto last year to go to school, I feel like I moved this time because I wanted to, not because I had to for school. So it's different!)

- Developing an addiction to the Food Network just in time to meet some of my favourite celebrity chefs during their stops in Toronto on their book tours

- Going home to Newfoundland for the summer and completing an internship with one of the best companies in Newfoundland and learning about the PR industry in my home province

- Starting another internship in Toronto with one of the best and most exciting companies in the country & being fortunate enough to work on an awesome digital team

It's been a year where I've learned a lot, not just about my new profession, but about myself and what I'm capable of when I put myself out there and just try; try new things, new foods, new books, new areas of the city, new whatever.

Mark Twain once said, "Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So sail away from the safe harbour. Explore. Dream. Discover." and I think Twain was right. I've learned that trying and failing is better than not trying at all. Though I've had some experiences this year that have been not great - in fact, they've been downright awful - they didn't kill me, and I managed to go away from them having learned a lot.

It was a year of growth for me, and I'm looking forward to seeing what 2011 has in store. Perhaps 2011 will be "The Year of Elizabeth...Again"?

Happy New Year, everyone! All the best for 2011!

Monday, December 20, 2010

The New Job: I'm Lovin' It.

I know it's been a month since I last blogged, but for good reason - I started my new job! From day one, it's been go, go, go, and I'm lovin' it.

As the newest intern on the Digital team at HRC, I'm a busy bee! Whether I'm checking spelling and grammar on a piece of writing for a colleague or doing research for someone else, or popping into a last minute brainer, I'm always kept on my toes.

Being new to any job, there's so much to learn and get used to. This job, however, is my first real "office" job, so learning the ins and outs of techie type stuff has been interesting as well. (working the printer was a big step for me. Don't even ask about sending a fax, that's too complicated right now.)

The people I work with are great - so much fun and always available to help a poor newbie like myself. No one hesitates to answer whenever I tentatively ask a question about something or other. We play while we work too, and can frequently be heard calling out random answers to riddles given by one of the Digital ladies. Our favourite answer these days? "Cars can't see dogs!"

I'm really looking forward to growing and learning more and more about the digital side of PR, and I know I'm at the best agency to do this. As always, wish me luck! I think I'm in for an excellent few months! :)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Job Hunt = Over! Hired!

Being on the job hunt is tough. I think most people know that.

I've been here since the end of September and had been looking for a job right from the start, without having much luck. And as much as I love the Food Network, when you start seeing repeats of certain shows, or have the daily schedule almost memorized, you know unemployment just ain' that great anymore. You're itching to be doing something.

Don't get me wrong, I loved expanding my recipe repertoire, and even went to a few book signings of my favourite chefs, (oh hey, Cake Boss!) but there's only so much one can take. It's been like Food Network overkill. Moderation is key, people.

(If you need a good stirfry recipe though, I'm your girl.)

Anyway, as I said, I wasn't having much luck at all, until a fellow Humber PR grad contacted me about a position that was opening up at the agency she was working. Interested, I applied, had a great interview, and two days ago, I was offered the position! So, I can finally say:

I'm hired!

I begin work at the agency next week, and I'm so excited. A big thanks to my pal Jenna for helping me out, because without her, I wouldn't be in this new position!

Wish me luck and have a happy week! :)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The job hunt = Not so much a time...

I've been back in Toronto for almost a month now, and after spending the first week trying to organize my life at the new apartment, I got serious about the job hunt.

I knew it would be hard, I really did. But when I had people telling me it would take two, sometimes four months to find a job, that was a bit of a blow.

Two months is a long time, four months is brutally long. After one month, I'm already pulling my hair out in frustration, feeling disheartened and constantly trying to perfect a resume that I once thought was pretty darn good.

Part of my problem is that I'm a planner, always have been. And sometimes I laugh at myself for feeling this way, but sometimes I get ticked off that this lack of job situation is interfering in my ultimate life plan. Things aren't going as I'd planned and hoped.

I guess Lennon was right: Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.

Here's the thing, potential employers: I'm hard-working, I'm dedicated, I'm curious and my brain is always ticking when it comes to being creative. I'm going to work at something until I think it's as good as it can possibly get. I get excited about new projects and challenges, and I'm young and fresh-faced, ready to learn anything you're going to teach me. I love public relations, it's my passion, and all I want to do is contribute to your company as much as I can. Why not give me a chance to prove it to you? :)

I'm always open to suggestions/comments/being pointed in the right direction, so if you know of a job that might be of interest to me that I may have missed, please, don't hesitate to comment, or contact me on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, anyway you can. I'm all ears. :)

Wish me luck. :)

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Move = Complete. Apartment = Amazing.

I've been back in Toronto for about 2 weeks now, and after a stressful move I'm pretty much settled into the new apartment. It wasn't an easy journey, but we made it!

When Heather and I began our apartment hunt back in the summer, we both knew we wanted to live downtown, as neither of us is from Toronto and wanted to have that "downtown" experience. It took time, as these things usually do, but Heather came across a gem that we couldn't pass up.

The location of our new home is so amazing, it really couldn't be better. And not only is the location great, the house itself is absolutely gorgeous. Beautifully restored, the townhouse is much nicer than we expected!

The move itself was stressful, as there were lots of delays and mix-ups with the moving company, but a few days later, I finally had most of my things in my new home. As I'd never really moved before, when packing up my things from residence back in May, I didn't realize how difficult and time-consuming it actually is. I've always heard from friends or family who have moved around in the past that it can be draining, frustrating and annoying, but I didn't really realize HOW draining, frustrating and annoying it really is. After this move back to Toronto, I don't really want to move for a while!

Now that I'm settled in and slowly working into a new routine, the next thing on the "To Do" List? Find a job.

Wish me luck!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Moving Day is approaching

I finished the internship last week and am now in the process of trying to wrap my head around moving back to Toronto. I keep trying to tell myself I'm going back, but it's just not sinking in. I really do have mixed feelings about going back...

I'm going to miss family and friends here in Newfoundland, and really miss where I was interning...but at the same time, I know it's time for a change again. Time to move on and experience something else. Even though I have lots of people telling me to stay, and half of me wants to stay...I'm still making myself go, because I don't feel...settled.

It's like trying to put not even a square peg, but an oval peg in a round's almost right, but not quite. It's not enough. It's just...not. I go. :) Again.

The job hunt is on for Toronto, so if you hear of any openings, please, I'm all ears. :) And to my TO friends, you've been don't be surprised when I start texting to meet for coffee/drinks/whatever! :)

Have a happy weekend!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Internship = Done!

Today is the last day of my internship, and it's with a heavy heart that I'm leaving. I've really enjoyed my time here, and there are so many things I'm thankful for:

The people I've learned from, worked with, and received advice from. What an amazing group, I'm going to miss them!

The clients I've worked for and the projects I've worked on...I've been exposed to many different fields and a variety of clients, and I've really gotten a taste for the industry here in Newfoundland. I'm so glad to have worked here at home, even for a short period of time.

Thanks for an amazing couple of months, and who knows...I could be back sooner than I thought. :)

Thursday, September 2, 2010

I'm Back!

I realize I've neglected my blog for a few weeks, but it's for a good reason! Not only had I been doing my internship but I'd been working part time at the 3 or 4 days a week, I'd work 14 hour days. Let's just say...not fun.

But my time at the bookstore came to an end, and while I was sad to go, I missed having a life outside work. Since I'm moving back to Toronto at the end of the month, I wanted to have time to spend with my family and friends before I leave.

In my last post , I talked about how well my internship is going, and I have to say, it just keeps getting better. Even though I've only been there for a few weeks, I've been so lucky to be assigned lots of different tasks, like writing for company newsletters, helping coordinate events and even heading up my own client project.

Next week is my last week, and I'm really sad to be leaving. Everyone I work with is wonderful; always full of advice and available for a chat if I ever have questions or need someone to proof read something I've written. They'll certainly be missed! :(

However, it's time to make a move and try to break into a whole other type of industry. I have no doubt I'll be learning even more in Toronto, and I'm looking forward to seeing what it has to offer.

Monday, August 16, 2010

One Week Down...and Loving it So Far!

Last week was my first week at my second agency. A little confused? Let's do a recap:

I started my internship a few weeks ago at Agency #1. Things were amazing. Then, Agency #1 shut down. A huge bummer. I was sad, I was stressed, I was frustrated and worried about what I'd do and about my immediate future.

Then, about a week and a half ago, I received word that Agency #2 agreed to take me on and let me finish my internship with them. I got to keep working with my boss from Agency #1 who is wonderful and I didn't want to have to part with, AND I'd finish my internship here in St. John's, so I can begin a job in Toronto when I return next month.

So how was the first week at Agency #2?


It's been busy, it's been eye-opening, and at times it's been a bit overwhelming, as I've been thrown right into huge projects and am trying to get my footing. I'm doing lots of different things, from writing bios to making phone calls on behalf of clients, to writing countless emails about this, that and the other thing.

To be honest, I was waiting for the internship to really judge how much I liked public relations, and so far, from the few weeks that I've been interning....I really love it. I was nervous that I wouldn't like it, and I'm sure there will be days when I don't, when I bang my head on my desk in frustration, and resort to upping my chocolate fix to 8am instead of 2pm, but for now...I love it.

I've begun week 2, and the days just seem to speed by at times. When 5pm comes, I'm actually disappointed sometimes, that I have to go home. That must be a sign that you love your job, right?

Until next week, have a happy week!

Saturday, August 7, 2010


The past couple of weeks have been pretty crazy.

I posted an entry almost two weeks ago, sharing my excitement over getting an internship here in St. John's. I was loving it; the people, the work I was was perfect.

Until I went in last Monday morning, and was told by my boss that the company was shutting down...immediately. As in: that same day.

Needless to say, I was shocked. And then nervous. And then a full-out wreck, because I had already turned down all my internship offers in Toronto, I'd already paid my first month's rent on my apartment in Toronto, and had already been looking for jobs...all in Toronto.

I kept going over and over in my mind what I'd do...I didn't want to have to go back to Toronto without having completed my internship because I want a job when I go back...a real one, not one "in a bookstore while I'm doing my internship" job. I need to be able to support myself while I'm up there, and not have to put everything on my credit card, or something like that.

So, after a week and a half of waiting...waiting...waiting....I finally got word yesterday morning: my boss at my old placement told me that I could come to the new company she's now working at and finish my internship there. To say I'm relieved is an understatement!!

Now, I can finally continue with my job hunt, my furniture hunt (anyone know where I can get a nice desk? Anyone?) and finally get on with my LIFE, now that I'm not stuck in limbo anymore.

Whew! I wonder if the famous Barrie Doyle would count this as a crisis....hmmmm....

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

When Life Gives You Lemons...

You're supposed to make lemonade.

Personally, I love lemonade...but only a specific kind.

There's a local creamery called Scotsburn Dairy Group, a company that's been around since 1900, that has since expanded to produce products other than just dairy. One of these products is their lemonade. It's basically the only lemonade I'll drink. I don't know why, it just hits the spot.

So when life gives you lemons....and you're supposed to make you?

What if you just. Don't. Want. To.

Ever have one of those days where something happens, and you tilt your head up to the sky, throw your hands up and say, "COME on!! Seriously?!?" I've been doing that over and over for the past week, trying to make sense of things. Why things happen. What's the point of them happening. What am I supposed to do now that they've happened, and caught me so off guard?

Lemons and lemonade. Make the best of it? I'm trying.

But playing the waiting game was never something I was really good at...but I'm still waiting...

...somewhat patiently.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

The unexpected (but excited) Intern!

Being home in Newfoundland for the summer, I had originally decided to wait to do my internship in September, instead of starting in May like most of the other people in my Humber PR class. And while being home with family and friends in St. John's is great, I have to say, I felt a bit....bored. I'm working part time at the bookstore again, but barely getting any hours, so I decided I wanted to do a bit of volunteer work.

To be honest, I wanted to get some PR volunteer experience before I started my internship because I thought that after four months of being out of the world of PR, I was afraid I'd have forgotten how to write a simple press release. (I know, that's unlikely, but I still feared it!)

So at a family gathering, I cornered a cousin of mine who works in the marketing industry here in St. John's, and his wife works in PR. (I know, lucky me, family members who understand my line of work!) I told them about my wanting to volunteer, and they said they'd see if they could help set me up with something. The next day, I got an email from my cousin, saying he'd gotten in contact with a friend of his at an agency here in St. John's, and to forward some writing samples to her.

I've been at this agency for a few weeks now and I'm loving it. The things I've been able to work on are even better than I thought they would be, and I'm so grateful to have such a wonderful mentor! And since I haven't had much luck securing an internship up in Toronto for the fall, my time at the agency here is actually going to be my internship now, which I'm so pleased about! Agency work here in Newfoundland is not as fast-paced as it is up in Toronto, but this is suiting me just fine for now!

I'm still returning to Toronto this fall, but instead of looking for an internship, now I'm looking for a job. If anyone has any recommendations, or knows of any openings for entry-level public relations practitioners, I'm all ears!

Have a happy week!

Monday, July 12, 2010

hot, Hot, HOT! This weather is (what else?) HOT!

On blistering days like today, I find it pretty fun to people-watch in St. John's.


Because in a place that rarely has the sweltering weather we've been enjoying the past few days, it's always funny to see the reactions of folks trying to cope with being so warm.

While at work today at the bookstore, a gentleman came in and immediately started in on how hot it was outside. "I know, I hate having to be in here all day, I love the heat!" I said. "Nope, no, no, no, I'd rather we have rain and fog right now." he replied, almost bitterly.

Guess we can't all take the heat!

I know Toronto's been "enjoying" a heat wave these past few weeks, I'm just hoping some of it will still be there when I return for September!

Have a (hot) happy week!


Sunday, July 11, 2010

I'm huntin' me an apartment...wish me luck!

For the past few months, I've been frequenting websites like craigslist, kijiji and in search of an apartment for myself and my friend Heather. (Heather's not been lazy, she's been looking too!) Coming from St. John's, and having lived at home my whole life, (except for a term in England) I never had to deal with renting an apartment. To be completely honest, I really don't know much about it; I barely knew where to begin looking!

So, I did what I always do when I want to know something: I Googled it. (What we did before Google, I just don't know.) I found a number of different websites that would let me search for apartments, including those listed above. I thought this was a great first step, but I soon learned that my search would be more difficult than expected.

For example: it's very convenient that the websites list the nearest intersection that an apartment is located, but for someone new to the city (aka: Me) those intersections mean squat. A lot of the streets I have never heard of, so everything was checked out on Google maps.

Another factor to consider when trying to find a place to live in a city you know so little about is the neighbourhood. I know so little about where a good area to live in Toronto is, so I'm always looking on my trusty Google Maps to see where places like "The Annex" or "Yorkville" are. While in Toronto a few weeks ago, Heather and I, along with our future roommate Brittany, checked out an apartment just east of Yonge and Dundas, but it wasn't for us. Thankfully, the apartment wasn't for us, as apparently the area is not so nice, as I later found out.

Our needs for an apartment are not that unreasonable (I think): It has to be close to the subway line, we'd prefer a building, and we want to live downtown. For me, personally, I've always wanted to live downtown in a big city, and as I'm not sure how long I'll be living in Toronto, I want to really get the experience of living downtown.

As I'm in Newfoundland for the summer, I've been doing my hunting on craigslist and then emailing my finds to Heather so she can potentially visit them in person. We're still looking, so wish us luck, and if you know of any great locations where I should be looking, or you know of an apartment, please, don't hesitate to tell me! I'm welcome to anything at this point!

Have a happy week!


Sunday, July 4, 2010


I know when people decide to begin blogging, they usually have a purpose to do so, and I have a number of friends from my PR world who are regular or semi-regular bloggers, each with their own unique reason for posting their thoughts online. When I signed up for this blog for school last year, I was really gung-ho on starting a blog, writing fantastic posts and having people comment and fawn over my amazing observations or what not, and updating it regularly.

That didn't really happen.

As I soon realized, you really DO need a reason to blog, and I just hadn't found my reason yet. Every blue moon, I might write a post about something that's struck a chord with me. But my first thought doesn't turn to, "I've gotta blog about that. That would make the PERFECT blog post." Usually I don't think about blogging at all, except to think, "Jeez, I wish I could keep a regular blog like my friends Alanna at the A List, or Amanda at Not a Model". I do realize however, while I'm now in the process of applying for internships and forced to take a hard look at the person I'm portraying through my online presence, that if I'm going to advertise that I have a blog, then I better actually keep it active.

I remember reading somewhere that the more active your blog is, the more readers you'll gain. And I can understand this...I check my friends blogs every few days for new posts, because they're faithful with updating. I haven't been faithful, so really, probably NO one reads my blog! (If you do, thanks!) Why would anyone think to keep checking a blog that hasn't been updated in a few weeks or months? I wouldn't.

So I got to thinking...what's my reason to blog? What in my life would be important enough, special enough, engaging enough (at least for me) to take the time to write about? And then it hit me, and admittedly I feel slightly dumb when I realized it....the header on my main page "We're Not In Newfoundland Anymore", talking about my transition from small town Newfoundland to big city Toronto. That's unique to everyone else in my blogosphere.

And so, from now on, I'll be updating my blog with posts about my quest to find an apartment in a city that I really still am new to; my hunt for an internship at a company that I'm hoping I'll love; trying to build a social circle in a place where I have little family and even fewer friends, and; attempting to really make a home for myself in a brand new place, all on my own.

It's a little (or really, a whole lot) daunting....but I think I'm up to the challenge. Happy reading! :)

Sunday, May 16, 2010

What Do You Believe Today?

In my travels through the internet, I came across a fabulous blog that makes me happy in so many ridiculous ways. The blogger is a young woman who, judging from her posts, I like to think of as a kindred spirit. Every few posts she has a series titled, "today I believe", and below are some of my favourite things that she, (and I) believe:*

... that rainy days exist to refresh the imagination.

... that the world outside your comfort zone can be scary, but it's also a whole lot more exciting.

... that ingrid michaelson lyrics always manage tospeak directly to my soul.

... that opening yourself up to new people can be nothing but rewarding.

... that it's important to be patient - especially with yourself.
... and that we should fill our days with ideas and people and pursuits that empower us.

... that discovering a book you love is one of the best things you can experience - and sometimes, rereading that book years later and re-falling in love with it can be even better.

... that concerts are one of the best, most perfect ways to feed the soul.

... that you should welcome as many people into your life as you can--and the more different they are, from one another and from yourself, the better.

... that sometimes, daydreams are the best way to pass the time.

... that although we have a tendency to put others up on a pedestal - sometimes, we deserve to put ourselves up there, too

Her blog is called a diary of little things and curiosities and is one you should definitely check out. What do you believe today? :)

*Please note the "today I believe" are from Laura Marie and not Elizabeth Marie. ;) Elizabeth Marie is simply an admirer of Laura Marie's writing!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Where to live...not just a question about apartments anymore.

I've been doing a lot of thinking lately about living in Toronto versus living in St. John's. Obviously the two cities are massively different, there's no question about that. But lately, I've been doing some hard thinking about which place I want to make my home, for the next few years at least.

When I first moved to Toronto last summer, there was no doubt I was nervous about living here, not just because I would be away from family and friends, but also for the little things, like not having a car. I can honestly say that after my friends and family, I miss my CAR the most. Public transport sucks. Completely. It had been my plan, however, to stick it out and do my study here, and then my internship, and then if I were lucky, to get a job here. Now, I'm not so sure.

Obviously I'm going to finish up school here, but I'm on the fence about my internship. When I went home to St. John's for midterm break, I met up with Colleen, my cousin's wife, who is a PR practitioner in St. John's. We had a long talk, and she told me that if I wanted an internship in St. John's, that'd be no problem, she'd hook me up with something no problem. But, she said, if I wanted real experience and to really get to know PR, I should stay in Toronto. So, that was my plan. And that's still my plan. However, due to recent events and my health not being the greatest, I've decided to make a few changes in my career path. And ultimately, it'll be better for me in the long run. I've talked with the most important people in my life about my decision, and they're respecting it, so I'm glad.

I've been saying since January that 2010 is the year of me. I'm doing things that are best for me, and things I want to do for ME. I can't make everyone happy, and I shouldn't have to bend over backwards trying to do so. Certain people in my life right now are not exactly positive influences, so my relationships with them are changing, for the better, for me at least. If they have a problem with me finally looking out for number one, then that's just too bad. I can't care anymore.

So....May will bring a new change to my life, one that I'm okay with. And then, a few months from May, it'll change again. But here's hoping it all goes well. :)