To the Stars on the Wings of a Pig

Hey friends! So I’ve finally got some news on the work front. I’m just gonna tell you right now because I’m a blabber mouth who sucks at telling secrets, and I’ve already been tweeting about it all day ;)

So first off, I got hired at Starbucks! Yayyyy! I’m going to be working as a full-time supervisor for the next few months, and start training this week. I’m happy there will be no void in my paychecks, and the Starbies job should actually pay just as much as the reporter gig :)

I’m not going to just be working at Starbucks though. You all know I realized a long time ago that I do not want to be a daily reporter, and I don’t want to be a PR person unless I find the perfect company. These are the only things my skills and background would allow me to do.

But why just do what my background allows? Especially if it would just make me miserable? (again) So I’ve decided to instead follow my heart, my gut and my passions. I’m throwing all sense and rationality to the wind and working toward a personal training specialist certification with CanFit Pro (Canada’s national standard).

I know, right? Me? A personal trainer? Why not!? Exercise and fitness isn’t just a phase or a hobby, it’s my life. What draws me to jobs like reporting and Starbucks are the people. I love meeting fabulous people, and even more I want to help the ones that are looking for it. My mom told me this wonderful thing along the lines of “the day you discover your passions is when you’ll never work another day in your life.”

Of course, I expect to work :P And I expect it to be hard at times. I don’t also plan on plugging away with people at the gym all day. I plan to continue my education with a future certification as a Nutrition & Wellness Consultant. Perhaps I’ll even want to be a class instructor – who knows! Basically, I see this as the first step in many steps to come. For the first time in a long time, I feel like I’m taking a step forward, and not just another step back.

I also plan to keep the journalism thing up. My new experience and titles will allow me to delve further into health and wellness writing. I’m lucky to have made a lot of contacts in journalism school, and I have a long list of Canadian publications I hope to freelance for.

I’m so excited!!!

And before we move on, I have something else I have to get off my chest – I’m back on the VitaMuffins.


I toasted my favourite deep chocolate flavour last night and put some marshmallow fluff on top. ohmysweetlord. It got crunchy on the outside, but soft and melty on the inside, then the fluff was all frosting-like on the top. Every single bite was worth every penny spent :D

Breakfast this morning was not very photogenic, which usually equals deliciousness.


Two Nature’s Path flax waffles smothered in 1/2 cup cottage cheese, 1 tbsp almond butter, 2 tbsp faux-syrup (mixed with a hand blender). And sprinkled with cinnamon of course. SO good! Freezer waffles are only filling when you throw protein + fat into the mix.

Then it was off to BodyStep, ie the funnest class ever (sorry spin, you hurt too much to be fun :P ). Step class is definitely not one of those workouts you can just phone in. You definitely get out of it what you put in, more so than some of the other classes. I think that’s why I always come out feeling so satisfied and accomplished :)

Afterward, I came home and drank some chocolate Amazing Meal blended with almond milk, half a banana, yogurt and ice.

I was a sweaty mess. But I had to look decent for my job interview this afternoon. Enter lots of showering, hair straightening, caking on make-up, ironing clothes (ugh) and digging out accessories and voila!


Hi!! I’m actually modelling my new necklace and earrings. For years I wore nothing but giant flashy earrings, but I’ve been on a chunky necklace kick lately. And I’m a sucker for girly flowers :P

And apparently the gussying up worked!

Oh, and there was a lunch, carefully eaten as not to spill anything on myself.


Smoked salmon on a bagel with laughing cow cheese, capers and spinach and an orange on the side. This salmon is local bbq flavoured stuff. SO good!! We Maritimers know how to do our smoked salmon ;)

After all my running around, I came home and tried out my other KIND bar. This time in Walnut & Date.

101_0394 101_0403
I had high hopes for this bar after Kath raved about it on her blog recently. Plus, dates are one of my favourite foods and I love them in just about anything. But, I wasn’t a huge fan! Maybe my expectations were just too high. I loved the walnuts, their texture reminded me a lot of sugar cookies. But I couldn’t really taste the dates. Honey is the third ingredient, and it was definitely the overpowering flavour in this bar.

Supper was (what else) chicken salad pita made with my leftover roast chicken from yesterday.


YUM!! You can see my running hat in the background. Meh. I’m a slob.

Finally, you may be wondering what “To the stars on the wings of a pig” means. Technically, it’s “Ad astra per alia porci.” It was the motto and personal stamp of John Steinbeck and appeared on the insert of all his books. It was a jab at an old teacher who once told him he’d only be a successful writer when “pigs flew.” I studied Latin and have a soft spot for Latin phrases. I’ve adopted it as my personal motto, to remind me that anything is possible :)


P.S. I’ve updated my About page so feel free to go check it out!

Till next time!

Posted on November 23, 2009, in Workouts and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 47 Comments.

  1. WooHoo!! Congrats on the new job! Don’t have too much espresso (although I doubt there is such a thing as too much espresso ;) )

    I think being a trainer is a great fit for you. You certainly have done work on yourself and come from a great place to inspire others to do the same.

  2. Congrats!!! Hopefully this will make your last weeks of work more bareable.

  3. So great to follow your dreams. Love the latin phrase- very cool. With such zest, you’ll be a fab PT.

    And it’s funny- you say you’re “back on the vita muffins” as if you’ve fallen off the wagon and you’re smokin’ the crack pipe again!! :-D There are worse things to be “hooked” on right!!??

  4. Congrats on the new job… I knew they’d hire you, how could they not?

    Best of luck following your dreams, it sounds like you have a good plan in place. Your mom is a very smart lady :)

  5. Yay! Congratulations on the new job!
    And your eats looks FAB today! Lot’s of veggies – yum!

  6. congratulations on the job! =D
    as if you wouldn’t get it PSH!

    you had it IN THE BAG!

    i hope you do get to be a pt. it’s such a rewarding job. =D

  7. Hooray for you! Let me know how the Caramel Brulee Latte is!

    Tim wants to engrave “ad astra per aspera” on his wedding band. It’s the state motto of Kansas and means “to the stars through difficulties.” He is weird, and difficult, sometimes. Sigh.

  8. Congrats on the supervisor position! Yay :D I just took a course in personal training and am taking the exam next month!! Hooray for you for following your dreams, girlie!

  9. Congrats on the job! :) I figured you might stand a good chance. And I’m excited to hear about your journey toward certification for personal training. Its something that interests me, but I haven’t made that step yet.

  10. Good for you for taking your happiness into your own hands!!!!!

    That takes guts and I’m proud of you!

  11. That is so exciting about the job and the personal training certification! I always believe in following your dreams.. yay!!

    Could you taste the almond butter in the cottage cheese? That sounds delicious!

    • The almond butter is surprisingly delicious with the cottage cheese! Aaaaalmost like peanut butter pie filling ;) I originally got into it by mixing cashew butter with ricotta. Yum :)

  12. yayyyyyyyy susan! i am so happy for you that you are pursuing things that make your life light up – that’s what its all about! you are going to make a wonderful supervisor and personal trainer – i would take a cuppa coffee or workout from you anyday!

    love you!!!!

  13. p.s. i am sad you didn’t like the bar (its one of my faves) and let’s gchat again soon!!!!

  14. Wow! Congratulations on the new job and on following your heart.

  15. Congratulations on the new job! I also think you will be an awesome trainer :)

  16. Hey. Congrats on everything!
    I stumbled on your blog, and have been following it for a few months! I’m from Halifax, and I’m dying to know where you found VitaMuffins? I’ve only seen one flavour once, in the superstore.

    • Hey Kathleen! I get the deep chocolate vitamuffins from the freezer in the health food/organic section at the Superstore. But I’ve also found the cranberry bran and blueberry bran flavours in the health food freezer at Sobeys as well. Definitely try there! :)

  17. congrats! this is all very exciting….

  18. I’m proud of you! Congrats for having the courage to follow your dreams :) I changed my major to kinesiology this year and I’m seriously SO happy I did it! Like you, I feel like I’m FINALLY on the right path! Great job girl, and congrats on the starbucks job, too!

    Ok that vitamuffin + mallow looks ah-mazing! Best combo ever!

  19. I LOVE amazing grass. Mix it with almond milk and it is MY FAVORITE combo!! I have the chocolate and berry at home right now! I started drinking about 3-4 scops a day!

  20. I said in my review that I wasn’t going to buy Vitatops…but I’m out and I might be addicted. I was looking up “healthy dessert” recipes but then I was like, screw it, I can just buy a 100-cal, 6g fiber dessert and have it ready and waiting.

    Oh and I would SO hire you as my trainer. You’re going to do great! I’ve flirted with the same idea but it’s just that, a flirtation. Good for you for making you dream a reality. I know you’ll suceed, and the nice thing about a background in writing/PR is that you can apply it to many other fields (am I trying to convince you there…or me LOL)

  21. Congratulations. Now I will know to look out for you there on future visits home!!

    I was thinking that you would be SO suited for personal training. I think that’s a wonderful thing to pursue. Good luck with it. I think I told you, my brother (also STU alum) got a social work degree but then just didn’t have the passion for a career in it. He decided to become a personal trainer. He took the CanFit Pro course and has never been happier with his “life change”.

    • I do remember you telling me about your bro! Reassuring to hear his life change worked out for the better :) Come find me if you come home this Christmas! I’ll be the one in the green apron ;)

  22. So you clean up really well :)
    Love your new jewels.

    The kind bar
    “Maybe my expectations were just too high. ”
    Girl. This is why I make 95% of the food I eat. If you see something packaged photo’ed, it likely went into Skylar’s mouth, not mine. At 2, she can’t really tell the total difference. I can. I get disappointed easily and would rather eat and truly savor than eat just to eat something meh.

    I hear ya!

  23. rediscoveringlauren

    wow congrats on the job :) i think its so inspiring and fantastic that your going after what you want and listening to your heart and allowing that to guide you in the future! Im still in college and so unsure of what i want to do, but this post definetly had more of an impact for me than im sure you thought it would :)

  24. congrats!!!

    and we love your tweets.

    (may I speak for all of twitter? :))

  25. I’ve never noticed before what pretty blue eyes you have!
    Congrats on the new “Starbies” gig! That is awesome. I’ve heard the benefits are great there, too?! :)

    • Yeah, I get a whole benefits package with Starbucks now. Funny, everyone thought the reporting job was such a sweet deal for me – but financially it’s identical to Starbucks! :P As a Can-Fit member now I get discounts on certain coverages as well.

  26. Oh and the trainer thing is great! I can definitely see you doing that, Susan. Congrats on making some great decisions this year toward making yourself happier!

  27. I am so excited for you- I KNEW this was going to work out :D :D :D Aaaaah…time to bust out the green apron and cap?! I can totally see you as a trainer/class instructor. Maybe one day you’ll do some DVD’s and I’ll get to take a class. Yeah!

    Leftovers are the best part of roast chicken- yum!

  28. Yay!!!!!!!!!! I’m so happy and excited for you about the jobs! Way to go babe!

    I think your salmon sammie looks delish, too. I love the combo of bbq flavor and salmon–I think it makes the fish less fishy. Anyway, looks so good!

    I also agree about the kind bars. They are yummy, but very sweet, and pretty high in calories. Hope you have a GREAT day! xoxo

  29. Congratulations! I think it’s fantastic you’re following your heart and I have no doubt you’ll be successful!

  30. Yay! Congrats! I’m so happy for you! Wheeeee! Is this Starbucks back in your hometown or where you are now?

    • Thanks Leah :) It’s where I’m living now. My original plan was to move back home for Dec/Jan, but I’d still have to pay rent on my place. So I figure I can stick it out a little longer here working full-time, paying my bills, and hopefully move cities when I can work as a trainer. It may be difficult getting out of my lease, we’ll see! (SO not looking forward to moving again)

  31. Congrats on the new gig! And the decision to start on your PT certificate! Two huge announcements in one post – love it! The Vita muffins look delish!!!

  32. At least you get to start at supervisor at SB that’s AWESOME. :)

    And that is such a great thing you’re going to get your personal training certification. Food and fitness are my two loves, and I’m going to school for the food part, but I think personal training would be my next choice, (maybe a second career?!) soo, I’ll be looking forward to your future PT posts.

    • I used to manage a Starbucks, so I kinda prefer calling the shots when I work there! :P And yeah, some day I’d like to do the food thing too… maybe sports nutrition? Who knows! I’ll definitely keep y’all updated on the PT thing every step of the way :)

  33. CONGRATS on the job. wow a supervisor! that is awesome susan. so happy for you :) and the personal training goal is spectacular.. something you will shine at. your workouts are action packed and you are so motivating. good things are coming your way!!

    oh and the photo of you all ready for your interview is STUNNING!

    off to check your about page! mwah!

  34. I know I’m late but who cares! CONGRATULATIONS!!!! You are going to be an awesome personal trainer (if you we’re in Detroit, I’d hire you!)! Yay for the ‘Bucks job too! I’m so happy for you :)

    Aw you look so pretty! I love your necklace and earrings!!

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