Monday, September 28, 2009

L - Lucky...

I am so exhausted, so this is going to be a short post...

Today Associate Winnipeg Free Press Editor Steve Pona called me to tell me that I was the recipient of the Winnipeg Free Press John W. Dafoe Free Press Scholarship!

I am so excited!

The Scholarship includes $650, and a newsroom internship at the Winnipeg Free Press during Christmas Break:

"Our internships are known across Canada for being personally and professionally rewarding. Interns get invaluable experience in both our print and web operations, and come away with a portfolio of published material. You'll also connect with Free Press journalists who can mentor you through the remainder of your school year."

I feel extremely lucky!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

G - George Elliott Clarke

One of my school friends posted a poem on her blog by George Elliott Clarke, and I felt inclined to share the poem on my blog...It moved me.

Everything Is Free
George Elliott Clarke
Original text: Whylah Falls
Wipe away tears,
Set free your fears:
Everything is free.
Only the lonely
Need much money:
Everything is free.
Don't try to bind
The love you find:
Everyone is free.
Your lover's yours -
Surrender force:
Everyone is free.
The sun melts down,
Spreads gold around:
Everything is free.
The rain is spent
Lending flowers scent:
Everything is free.
The love you live,
The life you give:
Everything is free.

(George Elliott Clark is a writer who came to our school today to read from his book I&I. He was incredible, and I can't believe how profound his reading was...)

Friday, September 25, 2009

B is for BROKE!

It's official, I now live below the "Low Income Cut Off" (LICO) line. (I would say "poverty line", but Canada has never actually established a actual poverty line, so instead I will have to use the term LICO, since it's legit...)

Ahhh politics!

"Poverty Line" or "Low Income Cut Off"...Either way, the rhetoric doesn't make much of of difference; because the bottom line is that I am poor!

I haven't been in this boat for years! (Minus my poverty challenge of course...But that was a month long experiment meant to generate awareness, education and information for me, and everyone that was following my poverty challenge blog. It certainly wasn't "real life", even though I tried my best to emulate.)

I am lucky though, cause I do have options that other people who are living below this line with me don't have. -- I have an awesome and supportive family; I have good credit, and access to the ever-so-terrifying student line of credit; I have banked stat, vacation, and overtime hours; and I have a well-paying job (that I will hopefully be able to pick up shifts at during Christmas break), and a light at the end of my tunnel!

I know I will be okay; and I also know that I am fortunate enough to be able to say that.

Still, I will not lie and say that I am overly excited to change my overabundant way of life. -- I like eating fresh produce, and being able to spend money with little recourse. I like all of the small things that I take for granted, like my Tim Hortons coffee, and my ability to go out for dinner or drinks with my friends...I like trips to Wal-Mart, and cable TV...

After I checked my bank balance this afternoon, and realized that my rent would have to be covered by my student line of credit this month, I started to feel a little resentful towards my married friends, who automatically have a financial union with someone else.


Everything else...Not so much!

I dunno, I suppose that it is not tactful to discuss my financial situation on my blog, where the entire world has access, but I am okay with it...

There is no shame to being poor; especially if you're working hard, and trying to better yourself!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

C - Cre Com: "I'm not Smelly Shelley anymore!!'

So we are into week four, and I am starting to get the hang of this Cre Comm thing...I think!

Cre Comm is a very unique program; the courses, the people and the facility are nothing like university...

The program is strict and extremely intense (and I am saying this after only three weeks; I can only imagine that things are going to get a lot more hectic the farther into the program we go...)

And the people, they are all so young and exude so much personality and creativity! Plus, most of them dress well, and do their hair (and makeup) for school...Everyone looks like a million bucks!

The facility is gorgeous, and so clean! Compared to U of W, The RRC Princess Street campus is like a palace or something!!

I am truly enjoying my time at Red River, but I would be lying if I didn't say that I feel 'un-like my normal self' here...

I feel kind of insecure, like I am back in high school or something. (I hated high school though, I don't hate Cre Comm at all!!) I guess I just feel old, and a little out of touch, given that I lack style, and I am so much older than a lot of my classmates.

I feel like Josie Gellar actually...

Though none of the girls in my class are mean girls, and I am not in love with any of my teachers, I feel like that person who was the loser in high school, trying to fit in!!


Although, if the movie 'Never Been Kissed' is loosely based on me, and my adventures of going back to school, than the good news is that it is only a matter of time before I am the most popular girl in Cre comm! Hooray!! (hahaha again.)

Monday, September 21, 2009

V- Vancouver (Oh how I miss you!)

My little sister lives in (downtown) Vancouver.

She moved there a couple years ago, to go to UBC and obtain her law degree. -- I am so envious, but proud of her.

I have gone there twice (this year) to visit her, and both times I was captivated by this beautiful province...

I miss you Vancouver. (I also miss you CJ!)

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Quote of the day.

"Just because there isn't somebody out there for you Shelley, doesn't mean that you shouldn't believe in love for the rest of us..."

Corey Holly

V - Vlogging?!

Hmmm...I think our next PR assingment should be "Vlogging" -- Video Blogging!

My friend Corey introduced me to the notion of 'vlogging' this morning as a matter of fact...He told me about this guy; Ray William Johnson, who has a 'vlog' that is absolutely hilarious! -- It's called "Equals Three" and, according to youtube, his channel is ranked the 71st 'most subscribed of all time'.

Wow, that's pretty impressive Ray William Johnson! Pretty impressive indeed...

Dude is HILARIOUS, and very talented. (He must be a former Cre Commer...Right?! haha)

But seriously; "vlogging"...We should consider trying it.

(Before I try vlogging though, I think I need to work on my social skills and gain a personality outside the realm of my comfort zone. Most of my Cre Comm friends and instructors wouldn't know it, but I am actually quite hilarious and boisterous around my family and outside-Cre-Comm-friends...No really I am...Honest.)

Saturday, September 19, 2009

R - Rambling (about the fam...)

It's 9:23pm, Saturday night, and I am at my parents place "Condo/cat-sitting" while they are away in Grand Forks for the weekend.

Sarah, the almost completely blind 14-year-old cat, is off in her hiding place somewhere, traumatized that she has been left in my care. (Oh, and for the record; she is not traumatized because I am a bad "pet-sitter", or because I am mean to her or anything. She is traumatized because I work such long hours, and when I condo/cat-sit I tend to pop in-and-out of this place and my own place, so she is neglected for attention). Poor little Sari gets sad and kind of hateful every time my dad (her BFF) leaves her in my care...

That's okay though, because I overcompensate for my neglect by giving her lots and lots of food! -- Sarah may be starving for attention, but she is not starving for food!!

Speaking of food, I am also not starving over here at Mama and Papa Cook's place!

You see, Mama Cook has this thing where she pre-cooks piles of food, and then freezes it in individual "meal-sized" portions that have been measured and weighed. If you didn't know any better, you would think that she invented the "TV dinner"...

You want a homemade chicken dinner with all the fixin's in five minutes?!

Mama Cook will make you a homemade dinner with all the fixin's in five minutes! And if you don't want chicken, there's beef, fish, vegetarian options, and soup...

The woman is a time-management genius!

However, there is a downside to the food at Mama and Papa Cook's place.

See, Mama Cook; she's pretty economical. She doesn't like the idea of wasting anything, especially food. (And I support her in her fight on non-wasting! Hallelujah!) But there is a line (that she always crosses) that needs to be drawn, and enforced when it comes to throwing out food, cause Mama Cook is notorious for consuming dairy products after they have passed the expiry date!

That is not right; dairy producers put those expiry dates on their products for a reason.

Expiry dates are like the law for milk. THE LAW.

If my milk says that it is going to be bad on October 8th, than it is going to be BAD on October 8th. There should be no questions asked, expired dairy is just bad news; our trusted friends in the milk industry said so. And those people are experts...EXPERTS!!!

Anyways, back to Mama Cook...

She has no qualms about eating (or letting me eat) expired dairy products.

She keeps insisting that the food is 'fine', and has gone as far as to mislead me into eating expired dairy products in the past. But I am onto her shenanigans now, and I will not eat anything that contains dairy in their house without first checking the expiration date myself.

Perhaps I am the sucker for believing that the dairy producers around the world are psychic, and know when my milk, and milk products are going to go bad. But I'm okay with that. Spoiled milk is the most disgusting thing in the world, and I'd rather just believe in everything that the dairy producers predict...

Ah well, I guess we all have our little disgusting habits...

I guess I better pay attention to the cat now, before I go to bed...

Goodnight blog-friends.

P.S. You should read this post with a Southern drawl, like Nancy Grace, cause that's how I wrote it. Yup.

W -- Working on Weekends...

Another Weekend, and thus begins my "work week"...

I haven't decided whether the week (while I am at school) is my "down time", or the weekend (when I go to work) is...

My job is not overly hard, but it's tiring. (10.5 hour work days...eek!)

Ah well, it's all for the greater good right!? -- I am going to school so that I can have a career (that will likely be equally as tiring, with the same kind of pay scale...I think) But, the point is, hopefully I will love my career!

I better go, I don't want to be late...

Update: Not sure if I should get a medal/gold star for this or not, but I'm the only one who showed up for my shift-time...There were three sick calls today!! Count 'em, THREE!!!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

W - Writers Block.

I am in PR class right now. Our instructor, the inventor of "Blog-mania 2009", said that we have to have a blog post (with a video and/or a picture) published by 1:50pm.

It is 1:34pm, and the creative part of my mind is unavailable at the moment. (Please leave a message, and it will return your call as soon as possible...Beeeeeeep...)


Usually I can muster up a bit of creativity, but today I am drawing an absolute blank!! -- I think this is due to the fact that I was up until 3:00am last night blogging (posting pictures on my new little art project blog...) thinking; "It's okay Shelley, two-hours of sleep is plenty!!"


What was I thinking?!?

I keep forgetting that I am not 20 anymore, and that in my "old age" I require at least six hours of sleep a night to function properly. (And that's just to function 'properly'!! -- Eight hours would be even better...)

Ah well, thank goodness for Tim Hortons and Full Throttle...

P.S. As an added bonus to anyone reading my blog; here is a video of Charlie the Unicorn!!

A is for Art...A little Art project as a matter of fact!!

I made another blog.

this one is all pictures of neat things that I have seen painted, drawn, or somehow etched on walls...

It's kinda neat, go look at it here.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

I means Idea...

I just had a light bulb idea (thanks to classmate Ashton) in regards to my blog...

I changed the name of the blog back to the original name, and will go with my "A to Z" format starting...


More to come later (I am in Creative Writing class right now, and it's just about to start...)

Location, Location, Location!

One of the best things about school is where it's located. I never get tired of looking at all of the buildings that surround the campus...
(I took these pictures with a cell phone, they are old and grainy, and do not do the area justice...But, I think they prove my point...)

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Jerk with a capital J...

I didn't watch the MTV Awards tonight, however after seeing about a thousand facebook status messages talking about what a jerk Kanye West was, my curiousity got the best of me, and I asked a friend what everybody was talking about.

My friend informed me that Pop/Country star Taylor Swift won an award over Beyonce (and Lady Gaga, and Katy Perry, and so on...) and Kanye West actually came one stage and crashed her acceptance speech -- he took the mic right out of her hands -- and informed her, and everybody else that was there, and the millions of people watching that he was "really happy for her, and he would let her finish. But Beyonce had one of the best videos of all time..."


I probably shouldn't be as shocked as I am, given that Kanye West is known for his blatant arrogance. But wow, this is a new all time low, even for him! -- Kanye's constant need for attention, and his god-complex are pathetic and got old real fast.


A "happy ending" did arise out of this situation when Beyonce called Taylor Swift back onto the stage to accept her (first ever) MTV Award. But still...Kanye is seriously a jerk.

My favorite Sunday Morning Tradition...

Post Secret.

Another marathon under my belt!

I finished the 10k in Treherne this morning. I didn't get the greatest time, and I hurt my knee again, but it was an incredible feeling crossing that finish line!!

After a trip to the sports clinic, I hope that I can start training for next year's Manitoba Marathon ASAP! -- I know it's a long way away, but it's never too early to start...

Saturday, September 12, 2009

10 kilometres of OH MY GOODNESS!!

A couple years ago, inspired a great deal by one of my good friends who ran both the full and the half Manitoba Marathon, I made a promise to myself (and to him) that I too would one day partake in the magic that is the Manitoba Marathon.

Fastforward to late last year, when my friend (with whom I will ad is quite the tyrant when it comes to marathon training) called me out on my previous whimsacle promise. -- It was late December, and my friend (the tyrant) told me that marathon training started in January, so I better get ready!

I initially scoffed at the notion of actually running in a real live marathon, but after a great deal of convincing (or, what I like to call "fantastic manipulation tactics"), I finally relented, and agreed that 2009 would be the year that I would run the half Manitoba Marathon.

I trained hard in the first month-and-a-half of 2009, going to the gym almost every night. My claves became rock-hard, and I developed quite the endurance!! However, I relapsed into my non-running ways after a week-long trip to Vancouver in February. (I had the greatest intentions to run while I was there...But dowtown Vancouver swallowed me whole, and I was far too enamoured to break free from it's spell.)

I didn't get back into a regular running routine until about a month (maybe a month-and-a-half) before the Marathon, and as a result my time and my knee paid the price.

(I still completed the marathon, and did a damn good job considering that I injured myself at mile four...But, my goal for the next Manitoba Marathon is to beat my 2009 time.)

Tomorrow, I am signed up to run a 10 kilometre in Treherne. -- I am not at all prepared for this run, and am scared out of my wits!! But, I booked the day off of work, and paid my entry fee (and the tyrant is driving me), so there is no backing down now.

I should have learned after this year, that I need to train better before I involve myself in these kind of events...

What the hell was I thinking?!?!

Oh yeah, now I remember...

I decided to tell all my friends (two of whom signed up for the Treherne Marathon) that I was going to run this thing, right after I crossed the finish line of my first ever half marathon in June!  (At that time I was drunk on endorphans, and had that "marathon feeling"...My state of mind was similar to that of someone who got into their parents liqour cabinet or something...) I wasn't being logical, planning to run a race during a time that I knew I wouldn't have time to train! Seriously, my decision making skills at that time
were compromised!


I guess I should go to bed now. the tyrant is picking me up early, and I have to wear spandex tomorrow...This isn't going to be pretty!

Good morning...What?!...Oh.

Brick walls are there for a reason. The brick walls are not there to keep us out. The brick walls are there to show how badly we want something. Because the brick walls are there to stop the people who don’t want something badly enough. They are there to keep out the othe people.
                                        Dr. Randy Pausch

I don't know exactly how it happened, but this morning the time on my alarm clock was ahead by an hour, so even after hitting the snooze button two times, I am still up far earlier than I need to be.


I work on the weekends; Saturday and Sunday, 9:00 am until 7:30 pm.

I am nervous about how my work and school lives are going to co-exist; I know that many Cre Commers have the advantage of not having to work while they are in the program, but that is not an option for me. I live alone in an already reasonably low-rent apartment. I am single, and have bills to contend with on my own, without the help of a spouse. I am also too old to move back in with my parents; their two-bedroom condo is far too small for all of us to live peacefully anyway...

I shouldn't complain though, I know that it is possible to work and go to school. (I watched my mom do it; she started out getting her degree in Education, and ended up getting her PhD! And she did this while working full time, raising three kids, and doing contract work for Red River and UofM...Oh, and she even had good marks throughout her school career...) She is definitely a tough act to follow, but her journey inspires me, and makes me realize that anything is possible, especially when you want something badly enough!

Still, I would be lying if I said that I wasn't nervous about my hectic schedule. (On a good note however, I did manage to bank over 260 overtime hours this summer! -- I plan to use these hours to top up my pay cheques for the next couple of months, so that I am as comfortable as I can be while I am in school. Plus, it is nice to know that I have time in my time-banks, in case I need to book a day or two off!)

I just have to keep reminding myself of how rewarding it will be be to complete this program, and move on to a new chapter of my life. The work force is only going to become more challenging, and I should view my current situation as one that is priming me for what lies ahead...

On that note, it's time to get ready for my day at work! Until next time blog-friends!

Friday, September 11, 2009


I have writers block today.

Watching "Super Nanny" didn't help. Although it did make me think and be thankful for my life choices.

Time to study my grammar for a test a test I have on Monday..Hopefully that will inspire some creativity!

P.S. Is there one 'S' or two in "visitator"?!

(The sigh is one I saw in a parking lot in the Village. It made me smile...)

Cre Comm: The "What not to Wear" edition...

Well week two of Cre Comm is coming to a close, and I am already feeling the intensity of this program!! (The workload hasn't become abundant yet, but the strict deadlines and timelines have become something that many of my classmates and I have developed a great sense of paranoia about...I have gotten into the routine of setting all five alarms on my cell phone, and my actual alarm clock every morning, just so I can sleep at night!)

Perhaps one of my biggest worries thus far in the program however -- this worry is right up there with my paranoia of sleeping in and being late -- is my absolute lack of fashion sense! It never truly occurred to me that I am the epitome of a fashion victim. (Today for example, I wore pants that were far too short!! How did this happen to me?! I must have looked in the mirror about eight thousand times before I actually left my apartment this morning...) I know that school is not all about clothes and style, but when you lack as badly as I do in that department, it's hard not to take notice of how dire this kind of situation can be.

It has just dawned on me that I am a prime candidate for an episode of "What not to Wear"! I can actually visualize the horror on Stacy and Clinton's reactions if they were to watch clips of me walking down the hallway at school...

Stacy: "Oh honey, what are you doing?! Those pants need to be at least two-inches longer!"

Clinton: "Unless she's majoring in 'floodology 101', those pants are totally inappropriate for somebody embarking on their professional career!"

Stacy: "...And look at that shirt! Sheer animal print? Really?!"

Clinton: "This girl needs our help."


I used to pride myself on not caring about brands and logos, opting instead to create my own image. But over the years I think I have actually crossed the line from "logo conscious individual" to "slob" without even realizing it! And now that I am in this new environment, where it seems that everyone is wearing skinny jeans and scarves, my lack of style is really rather blatant!

I know that my emphasis should be on my assignments, and learning the vast and wonderful world of media, but rest assured faithful blog readers, I am going to be focusing on the tasks as hand with a brand new sense of consciousness and style...

I wonder what kind of outfit I can muster together for tomorrow?!


Thursday, September 10, 2009

My kinda class...

Well here I am, in PR class, blogging!

I never thought the day would come that I would be told to blog in class; this is unreal!

I have already been blogging for about a hundred years, so I know what I am doing...But since I am writing on this blog for a class -- a Cre Comm class at that -- I am nervous and already trying to hard to be clever and witty.

I am supposed to find a focus for my blog (This is a concept that I am new to, as all of my previous blogs have been all over the map!!) I am contemplating just writing about my life:

Single 30-year-old Cre Comm student who works part time (for a government corporation that I would rather not mention), and attempts to have somewhat of a social life...

Is that lame? Too personal? Not professional enough?...

Though the concept sounds kind of "boring" (who cares about my life?! Really...Who cares?!) But my life -- as a student, a part-time *** employee, single 30-year-old, and all around kooky kinda gal -- is rather ironic and sometimes hilarious.
Ah well, we shall see what comes out of this brain of mine...