As some of you may know, I go to Humber College (Lakeshore) in Toronto. This week I’m running for president of our PR Committee. I served as section representative this past year and really enjoyed the involvement. I would love the opportunity to help grow the committee into the type of community outside of school that can help our students grow, learn and succeed. Now, I know some of you may not know that much about me so I figured what better way to fill you in than post a blog! Some of my readers may enjoy this post also.
1. I love hockey – Honestly, there is nothing in the world that I enjoy more. Hockey has been my escape for as long as I remember. My family has season tickets for the Pittsburgh Penguins and I go to as many games as I can. I have been to 18 NHL arenas and my life goal is 30 by 30! My ultimate dream is to work in hockey someday. I love all kinds of hockey: NHL, AHL, ECHL, OHL, QMJHL, NCAA, USHL, and more! I have watched teams win the Stanley Cup, Calder Cup, Memorial Cup and Victoria Cup. I have also been to gold medal games for the Olympics, Men’s and World Junior championships. Not to mention Winter Classics, All Star Games and Drafts! I have attended games in the United States, Canada, Sweden and Switzerland. When it comes to hockey, I get really emotional. I just feel really blessed to be in the stands sometimes. I become so attached to the team that it’s like I win and lose right along with them. I’ve been lucky enough to see my team win the Stanley Cup and I must say, it was the best summer of my life. It brought my friends and family together like I had never even expected. I can’t wait to experience it again someday!
2. I’m a boy band groupie – Some people would probably be embarrassed to admit this, but I’m not. I absolutely love boy bands. Unlike some in the late 90s, I didn’t choose sides. I liked the Backstreet Boys, ‘N Sync and 98 Degrees. I still do! I might not have been around for all of New Kids On The Block’s career, but I love them now! One of the most exciting days of my life was hearing that they would team up with the Backstreet Boys for NKOTBSB. You don’t even want to know how many concerts I went to. I’m so happy that boy bands are coming back, so thank you One Direction. I’m a big Niall fan, something about blondes I tell ya! I recently became a fan of Big Time Rush and I must say, although they are marketed to teenagers their music is really good! They are some of the nicest boy band members I have met also. I’m that weirdo that goes to solo performances when boy bands break up too… hellooooo Nick Carter. You can find me at after parties, autograph signings and Waffle House waiting around for Donnie Wahlberg. Other than boy bands, I like all kinds of pop music along with rap, alternative, Glee and anything I can sing to (I’m looking at you Carrie Underwood).
3. I can’t live without reality TV – Really though, who can? There hasn’t been a Real Housewives series that I haven’t been obsessed with. My favourites are Atlanta, New Jersey, Beverly Hills and of course Vancouver. I’m totally obsessed with Nene Leakes and would just faint if I ever met her. I actually vacationed in Franklin Lakes to try to find Teresa Giudice. I went to restaurants, stores and salons that the RHONJ’s frequented. I found Chris Manzo at least. In Beverly Hills I went to Lisa Vanderpump’s Villa Blanca and Sur and was lucky enough to meet her and her cute little pooch Giggy. She’s a sweetheart. I have also met Betheny Frankel of RHONY in the Hamptons. Outside of the Real Housewives franchise I love Keeping Up with the Kardashians, Big Rich Atlanta/Texas, Four Weddings, Say Yes to the Dress, Gypsy Sisters, RuPaul’s Drag Race and I’m sure there’s more. Outside of reality TV I like Gossip Girl, Modern Family, Desperate Housewives, Criminal Minds, and Law & Order. Basically, if it’s trashy I will love it.
4. I’m a proud Sphynx mommy – Sure, he looks scary but he’s my baby! Sergei is a Sphynx, meaning he has “no” hair. Most people are skeptical until they meet him but I almost guarantee you will love him. No matter who you are! I would say he is part cat, part dog, part human and part monkey. He is very friendly and loves to cuddle. Sergei probably meows more than most cats and you can win him over with a laser pointer. Sadly, he was born with some intestinal issues and because of that he is half the size of a typical Sphynx. Taking care of him has been so rewarding and every day I am happy to be his mother. My little Sergei turns one soon and obviously he’s having a boy band themed tea party to celebrate.
5. I travel often – I probably vacation m0re than the average person. I have to get away at least once per month. That might seem extreme but I think there is so much to learn from travelling. Every place I go I try to learn something new. Did you know that 7 Yankee Stadiums could fit inside the Mall of America? Or that ravioli originated in the Piedmont region of Italy? How about that Cuckoo clock’s were invented in Germany and not Switzerland? These things might seem useless to you, but hey if I’m ever on Jeopardy I’m set! I love being a student of the world and that’s what travel has given to me. It’s also shown me what it’s like to really be at peace. I think one of the best days of my life was when my family rented a yacht and spent the day boating on the Amalfi coast. The water was so blue, so warm. Every moment was full of natural beauty and when living in North America it’s hard to remember what that’s like. If I can’t make it overseas, I check out what this lovely continent has to offer. I find that every trip can be rewarding when you travel for knowledge.
6. I’m into bling – A lot of my friends joke that I must have been a drag queen in my past life. Hey, I hope I was! I love anything shiny. You will usually find me wearing ridiculous over-sized jewelry but that’s what I like. I blame it on growing up the that United States. We learn “the bigger, the better.” It has sort of become my own unique personal style and I’m pleased with that. Huge bows, sequins, glitter nail polish, I love it all. I even extend the bling onto my face, where you might find glitter eyeshadow or mascara. I bring my love of shiny things into my home with chandeliers, acrylic chairs and mirrored tables. The light reflects off of things and looks fabulous darling!!!
7. I love PR – Obviously, I’m a public relations student! Seriously though, I love PR. I feel blessed every day because I’m doing something I love and so many people can’t say that. I loved PR before I even knew what it was. When I was around 12, I didn’t have many friends but I did have a big heart. I spent most of my time volunteering for places like the American Cancer Society and the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. I would help plan parties, raise money and just overall awareness to any cause I worked for. I never expected that my love for event planning, writing, social media and more would turn into my career! While working at a hockey tournament I met someone who was in Humber’s PR post-grad program. At the time, I was struggling at York University as a political science major. I didn’t find joy in what I was doing and it was taking a toll on me. She talked to me about what she did, what she learned and how much fun she had every day. I couldn’t believe it, I immediately knew this was my calling! So here I am, getting my bachelor’s degree in public relations at Humber College and I couldn’t be happier. I love my school, I love my program and most importantly I love my peers.
8. I’m usually sick – Unfortunately, I am sick a lot of the time. I have Rheumatoid Arthritis and Fibromyalgia. For those of you that don’t know, Rheumatoid Arthritis isn’t what it sounds like. It’s not that arthritis in your knee that you have after an injury or those aching joints that your grandmother has. RA is an autoimmune disease that results in a chronic, inflammatory disorder that affects tissues, organs and joints. It can be disabling, painful and isn’t curable. I had undiagnosed juvenile RA that is now in an advanced stage since they caught it so late. Some mornings, I can’t get out of bed. Every single day I’m in pain, but I work through it. I have times that are worse than others, which is called a flare. I also have Fibromyalgia, which is chronic widespread pain usually found in my muscles. When one flares up, the other usually follows. Since my immune system is weakened, I get sick in other ways very easily also. If I have to come to class in a wheelchair, I will. If I have to avoid drinking at a pub night because of pain medication, I will. I will do anything to overcome my disease.
9. I wouldn’t be here without my Meme – If you follow me on Twitter, I’m sure you’ve seen me talk about my Meme. She is my father’s mother, therefore my grandmother. She has raised me since I was 12 years old and I couldn’t be more thankful. There has not been one day in my life that Meme hasn’t been there for me. She is more than my grandmother and my care-taker, she’s my best friend. I would choose a night with her over anyone, any day. She shops with me, she travels with me, she goes to hockey games with me, we do everything together! She has the best sense of humour and I can talk to her about anything. Every chance she gets she reminds me how proud of me she is and that’s what keeps me going. Everything I do, I do for her.
10. I “started from the bottom” – You probably just rolled your eyes, but I’m serious. I was born to two teenagers. I spent my early years in project-housing and trailer parks. My mother was a drug addict, a prostitute and a convicted criminal. I missed school to take care of my two younger half-brothers and learned how to cook before I knew how to read. I wouldn’t say I had much of a childhood, but I learned a lot. When I was in middle school I was taken from my brothers because my mother abandoned us. They went to their dad and I went to mine. I didn’t last long at my father’s house, he had a new wife that wasn’t exactly kid friendly. Luckily, my Meme soon took me in and showed me what it was like to be loved. With her entrepreneurial success, I went from not even having food on my table to having designer bags in my closet. She has given me everything I could have ever dreamed of. I always say, I might be blessed but I’m far from lucky. I still face family problems; my mother still struggles with addiction and my brother lives in a psychiatric hospital but I have pulled through. I’m the only person in my family to even attempt a bachelor’s degree. I’m the only one to move away from Pennsylvania. I’m the only one to try to find a better life for myself and I’m succeeding. I know how to face adversity and more importantly, I know how to thrive through it.