spotlight on: four all ice cream

Distinct and reliable signs of fall:

  • trees changing colours
  • people bringing out their long sleeves and sweaters
  • the insane lengths of the bookstore/Tims/Dollarama lines

After being gone from campus for yet another 8-month stint for my last two co-op terms, coming back to KW was a weird experience. Why is it so crowded on campus? Why is it impossible to find a cutlery tray? Why did I briefly think that I could survive 3 seminar courses? All excellent questions with no real answers.

In the two days it took me to finish writing and editing this post we have found a cutlery tray (a new unsullied Dollarama opened up on Erb) and I made the decision to save my sanity and switched out of one of the seminars.

What really helped me transition back to campus life was the fact that while I was gone, a new ice cream place opened up in Kitchener and I have been waiting months to try it out. Now I could go on and on about how “for someone who is lactose intolerant I shouldn’t love ice cream as much as I do” but that’s old and tired – unlike the products at Four All.

Continue reading “spotlight on: four all ice cream”

apps, extensions, and tools – oh my!

Hello and welcome to another edition of apps + chrome extensions + nifty sites with Vicky!  I honestly need to sit down and come up with a better name for these things, it’s getting to be kind of a mouthful. I know I normally do these separately but I haven’t been doing anything drastically different lately to warrant two posts.

tl;dr of this post – icon pack + calendar widget // photo editing // new tab page that swears at you // i miss jobmine // infographics

If any of the above even vaguely interest you keep on reading!

Continue reading “apps, extensions, and tools – oh my!”

spotlight on: just love pie

tumblr_kul5zq3sss1qzxpwao1_1280

The scene above might be in my top 10 Marshall moments from How I Met Your Mother because not only do I love charts, but I also really love pies. I don’t know why I ever bother telling people that I love pies because I’m pretty sure we all love pies so that’s just a given. Right?

I can’t imagine what you don’t love about a delicious baked pastry with fruit and things in the middle that you are encouraged to eat with a side of ice cream.

This whole preamble was to get you excited for the fact that Waterloo has a new pie cafe! Spoiler alert, a pie cafe is deliciously amazing.

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

Continue reading “spotlight on: just love pie”

essential app roundup: fall 2016

It’s been a while since I’ve done one of my app posts and in that time I’ve accumulated more apps that I use on a pretty regular basis that I think would be super handy for people (students particularly!) . This collection has everything from more calendar widgets to fun tools for social media!

Continue reading “essential app roundup: fall 2016”

spotlight on: waterloo public library (john m. harper branch)

I love finding new places to study in Kitchener-Waterloo because sometimes I just really need to get away from my bed so I can focus. As I write this I’m taking a break (one of many from today) from writing my papers. I don’t really deserve a break but I’m taking one anyways.

As a result of giving Mike really shitty directions the other day, we ended up north of campus in Siberia – which is to say in the Laurelwood neighbourhood of Waterloo. Unfamiliar name? That’s because there’s basically nothing out here and only one bus route actually services this road. But we passed by this really nice building that caught my eye. Turns out it’s one of the 3 branches of the Waterloo Public Library all tucked away in a corner where most university students would never venture.

Continue reading “spotlight on: waterloo public library (john m. harper branch)”

spotlight on: smile tiger coffee

How much do you love natural light and coffee shops that make you feel like you’re in the living room of your dreams? I’m going to go ahead and assume that you answered like any other human because who wouldn’t love that? You need to get your butt to Smile Tiger.

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

Continue reading “spotlight on: smile tiger coffee”

on the quest for motivation

It’s exam season and I’m sick. I thought at first my throat was just blown from going way too hard at The Killers’ set at Wayhome. But now it’s been more than a week and I’m still feeling under the weather (read: coughing fits, phantom smells??, headaches, sore throat) so I don’t think I can blame this one on Brandon Flowers.

Couple that with general dread at the thought of final exams and you have one very unmotivated human who never wants to leave her bed. I’ve taken so many naps in the last week I’ve slowly become quasi-nocturnal. But that’s not conducive to a good finals season so in case you’re anything like me, here are some things I do to help find that elusive motivation.

Continue reading “on the quest for motivation”

EXCEL-ing at organization [pt. 3 of HIOML]

Straight up, this title is a lie. I used Google Sheets instead of Excel but only because of *the cloud*. Sorry Excel, I still love you though.

Being a political science major means that I have stacks of readings to do. Really, we students all have readings to do I just whine about mine. Sometimes it’s straight forward, like ‘read this 60 page chapter’ and sometimes you take a block course (double the workload but half the run time) and you get thrown 10 readings per week. If you couldn’t tell with the previous instalments of the HIOML series, I really like making sure I stay organized during school. So last year I created a readings tracker.

Yeah, you read that right – I track all my readings because I’m not even going to try to hide that I’m a neurotic nerd. Nerd-rotic? Oh, that sounds kind of…inappropriate. Disregard.

Continue reading “EXCEL-ing at organization [pt. 3 of HIOML]”

spring course load [pt. 1 of HIOML]

Note: in May of 2016 I decided I was dorky enough to warrant more posts of this organizational nature so this title has been retroactively changed and now is the first part of a series called How I Organize My Life.

This isn’t the most fun topic that I’ll be writing about here, but I think it’s really important, especially as a university student.

This Spring 2015 term is my first term on campus during the summer and I don’t know why past!Vicky did this to future!Vicky, but I’m sure she was vindictively laughing as she signed up for 6 courses. Okay, I’m being melodramatic, I know exactly why I took 6 courses this term and it has a lot to do with poor planning in my first year. I basically didn’t figure out that I wanted to minor in anything until my 2A term and I didn’t get a good start on those minor requirements. What I did do was knock out all of my breadth requirements for my degree so I guess, win/lose situation for me?

So I plotted out the rest of my courses from now until I graduated and figured that I need to be taking either an online course during a work term to catch up, or slip in a 6th during this term. It helped that this term I already had an online English course so I wouldn’t be spending additional time on campus. It also might have something to do with the fact that taking a 6th course is free, whereas taking a course during a work term will cost me upwards of $600.

Continue reading “spring course load [pt. 1 of HIOML]”

five interview tips

So it’s that time of the term again, when all the co-op students are applying for their next placement and everyone on campus is nicely dressed. I’d like to think that I can impart a little bit of wisdom on you regarding interview preparation, or at least let you know how I handle these things.

  1. Really do your research. There’s nothing worse than showing up to an interview without researching the company, or the position even. My job was at a ministry that funds research and my boss told me about one applicant who walked in and started talking about doing research for the government. Whoops. This feels like a no brainer, if you’re interested in the job why wouldn’t you be looking into the company?
  2. Dress for the part. If anything, err on the side of over-dressed. One of my favourite parts about this whole interview season is that I get to people watch and see what others are wearing to their interviews. What this really means is that I scope out people wearing completely inappropriate outfits for interviews. Tech interviews are one thing, where casual wear is what you’d be wearing to the office anyways and they really just want to see your skills. Every other occasion? Dress to impress. Basically what I’m saying is if your shoes have glitter or are more than 3 inches tall, maybe we wear that to Phil’s and not to an interview. Boys! White socks don’t go with black shoes.
  3. Prepare anecdotes. My last supervisor was amazing and did an interview help session/critique with me before I left. He told me that I should be wrapping my experiences and skills into a handful of anecdotes to tell at the interview. It makes it easy for the interviewer to follow your resume and easy for you to talk about it. I tested this method out on this round of interviews and I have to say that it’s a much more organic way to describe yourself and your strengths and weaknesses.
  4. Have actual questions. There is always space left in the interviews for you to ask the interviewer questions that you have about the company or the job. The interviewer wants to know that you have a genuine interest in the company and this really shows them that you want the job. I always want to know how the team dynamic is at the office and whether or not I’d be working on my own or with others. Don’t be afraid to ask about the pay rate. In fact, you’re encouraged to ask because otherwise you’ll potentially be accepting the job blind.
  5. Don’t overthink things. Even if you want the job desperately, overthinking only leads to nerves which can really affect how you do at interviews. I’ll do my preparation and I’ll look over any notes I make for myself, but what I find to be the most effective way to do well at interviews is to pretend it’s not the job I want the most. It takes the pressure to perform off and I can be more myself.

That’s it, that’s all I’ve got for y’all! It gets easier with time and experience, but I hope this helps you land your next job!