It’s been a l-o-n-g, l-o-n-g time since I’ve had to get to an office, dress in office attire, and, obviously, work in an office, amongst other colleagues. I’m only two weeks in, but from my perspective, I find it all so intriguing, especially working in an office space, dedicated to all-things parenting.
In this new weekly column, The Savvy Scene, you’ll get to know what it’s like to work in an office dedicated to our parenting websites, including savvymom.ca, urbanmoms.ca, and babypost.ca. And you’ll get to meet the people who work here too (And they’re fabulous so I can’t wait for you to get to know them!)
You’ll also get the inside scoop on what we talk about, gossip about, laugh about, and, basically, the Savvy scene over here, even our Savvy Snafus. (Yeah, I did walk into the wrong office on my first day. Nice people!)
One of the most hilarious things I learned on my first day, after I noticed a pregnancy test on the ‘swag’ shelf, is that no one who works at a parenting website, or magazine for that matter, will ever need to buy their own pregnancy test. In fact, as I’m writing this, I’m staring at a box of them, sent by a P.R. agency. (If I ever notice missing pregnancy tests, I’m not going to ask any questions! Who am I kidding? Of course I will!)
Even though I have worked in office environments before, usually quite conservative ones, like the CBC and The National Post, this is probably my favourite office to be in.
How could you not like a fifth floor office, with wooden floors? I’m getting so much exercise walking up and down the stairs. Ok, I’m lying. I take the elevator, with a sign posting a phone number, alongside, ‘Call Ghostbusters!’ if you get stuck. (I giggle every time I see it, while NOT taking the stairs.)
And, in one area of the office, I’ve been warned, I need to unplug the air-conditioning before using the microwave. (It’s more of a joke than a problem!) It takes me back to my ‘younger days’, when I lived with roommates and we needed a shower/washing machine schedule.
That’s the vibe here too. Everyone is friendly, funny, helpful, dedicated to their jobs, and in fact, kind of feel like roommates.
In the area I work in, I’m surrounded by five women, which brings me back to my days working as a producer at Pamela Wallin Live, where I also worked alongside only women. As Senator Wallin once said, “I don’t hire only women. I hire only the best and brightest.’ It’s still one of my favourite lines ever uttered by any boss. And the boss here seems to feel the same.
Not everyone who works here are mothers! Yet they dedicate their days to all things parenting and probably know more about what’s happening in the parenting world than most parents.
Some are still in their twenties. Two of my colleagues are celebrating birthdays this month. Happy Birthday Katie and Michelle! (I find it super hilarious when they moan, ‘I’m getting old.’ May I gently remind you that you two were not even born when the original Ghostbusters came out! Anyway…)
I couldn’t help but wonder, because I’m a journalist and super curious about people, if these non-mother colleagues, immersed in all-things-parenting all-day long, look at this job and think, ‘I can’t wait to be a parent’, or if learning and hearing about so many parenting related issues, was, you know, a form of birth control for them? (Yes, this is how my brain works.)
This week, let me introduce you to Michelle Reddick, Managing Editor of savvymom.ca (who, also, has become my go-to-person for all things technology-related.)
She has worked here for three years now, and when I asked her if working here made her want babies, or remain child-free, told me, ‘I’ll admit it. Sometimes it’s a bit of both. But it’s definitely more the former. It has brought me a new level of appreciation for things like long baths and going to movies alone, though!’ Nah, I’m not jealous AT ALL. I love my children. I’m not jealous of Michelle. I love my children. Okay, I’m a little bit jealous.
Before Michelle started at Savvy, she had no idea about the ‘huge, wonderful online mom communities out there,’ as she puts it.
Also, she has learned that, ‘If you’re a mom with an internet connection, you’re never alone. There’s always someone who’s going through the same thing or someone you can turn to for advice.’ Amen!
On a more personal note, Michelle’s signature dinner party dish is Beef Bourguignon. (Seriously, how could I not invite her over?)
Speaking about food, on Monday, two of my colleagues came in and plopped down nearly two dozen cupcakes on the ‘communal table’, located in the middle of the office, leftovers from weekend birthday parties. You don’t get that kind of service working alone, at home, that’s for sure.
So, as I get to know my colleagues, and as they get to know what I refer to as, ‘The Office Me’, (Meaning, I’m arriving in dresses, after many years of writing books in men’s boxer shorts and T-shirts from American colleges I’ve never attended) we love to invite you behind the Savvy Scene, here at the office. Next week, I’m going to tell you about our Savvy Washrooms. I know, you can’t wait!
In the meantime, feel free to e-mail me at email@example.com and ask me about anything you want about the scene here at Savvy. I’m pretty much an open book. We want you to feel like you’re part of our little family, from the silly to the serious, we are opening our (virtual) doors to you. Welcome!