It gets easier

Now trust me when I say, I know this job isn’t always easy as a women. When we wake up, we don’t get to put on our new favorite outfit, doing our hair is useless, we don’t get home smelling like flowers, our nails usually stay short and dirty with nail polish lasting about 15 minutes in to the day and we’re usually cooking dinner in our dirty work clothes. The list goes on.

But please believe me when I say, the longer your in the industry for, the more you will get comfortable with all of it. I promise

Clearing out trees, making space for the foundation.

More comfortable with tools, more comfortable on the job sites, with others, yourself and generally everything.

When I started, I felt uncomfortable asking for a raise or a salary I thought I was worth. I would of never dared to complain about anything, from outhouses that we’re just to nasty to even open the door , to sexual harassment, to unfair pay.

House we finished up in Ukee. First siding job.

I was questioned on why I made a big deal at the Christmas staff party, when my butt got grabbed twice. I was questioned on why I was angry when I was rushed to the hospital with a kidney infection during the Covid 19 outbreak in March due to not having access at I all to a bathroom. I honestly often felt like my job was always at risk because I was a minority.

But every time something out of the sort would happen, I had Derick by my side, reminding what I was worth and reminding that I have every right to demand to be treated like any other worker, with respect and dignity.

Exhaustion at its finest.
Coffee is essential to the trade

Today, I feel comfortable using/trying any tool handed to me. I feel comfortable being smelly and dirty and I feel comfortable not being dolled up.

Biggest floor I’ve ever sheeted mostly alone.
Now the other half tomorrow …

I feel comfortable looking at a man dead in the eyes and telling him what salary I want and what I need to make my job possible. I feel more than comfortable telling someone off for staring for to long or saying/doing something inappropriate about me or any other women. Today I know that I have a place in the industry

I know that I’m just as important as any other carpenter, I know that I have a voice, I have the right to speak up, to learn and to grow in the industry just like anyone else does .

Today I know that when I walk on to the job site, I’m gonna rock any task that’s given to me.

Find a job that makes you happy

A summer in Canada’s surf town.

This pass summer, Derick and I had the opportunity to live in Uclulet, Bc. It was honestly a dream come true to have found this job in may, when everything was shutting down on Vancouver Island because of COVID 19. As soon as we arrived, we were lucky enough that Relic Surf shop was selling retail by appointment and the owner was kind enough to let us in and hook us up with some sweet surf gear. This made our summer much more exciting.

I won’t lie, to have had the opportunity to live in Uclulet while traveling was not aloud and everything was shut down was amazing. The deer wondered all over town, the beaches were empty with plenty of space to surf and everywhere was peaceful and quiet.

Mike, the kind owner of Relic surf shop.
That day at the beach I was far too proud of my new gear.

Now I’m gonna tell you about of a specific night when we decided to host a 90s bbq at our Rv with the people we work with. Everyone had amazing costumes, I had track pants, a turtle neck, a fanny pack with bright pink lipstick and the side ponytail. Once the sun went down and everyone had enough drinks in them, we decided it wouldn’t be a true 90s night if we didn’t all go skateboarding in the empty streets. Sure enough we grab our skate boards, grab a Bluetooth speaker, pop on the best old school hip-hop playlist we could find and hit the road.

Walk at the crack of dawn watching a sea lion feast.

Now i will tell you right now, I can get places on my board and hit small hills, but I am very far from being a pro. Buuutt…. I thought I was the next tony hawk that night. Derick and the others being much more experienced then me decided to bomb this hill, at the moment I thought it was one I had previously done. So I decided to bomb it to. After getting through two speed wabbles, I thought I was good, then a third one hit me along with a few rocks.

After math of road slide

I flew off my board and slid far enough to melt the top of my shoes and skin my palm.Turns out, I have never bombed that hill before. Turns out it I shouldn’t of skateboarded back home.

Two fractures in the kneecap

Yes. After waiting three weeks to see a doctor, i found out I fractured my kneecap in two different places. That made the next 6 weeks of my life a living hell. You don’t realize how important you knee is until you can’t use it. But honestly, I don’t regret it, it was a great night and I had an amazing time. As soon as I hit my 6 week mark, derick and I got back in the water and started surfing again. I won’t lie I almost cried I few times when Id fall knees on the board or when the rip was to strong but it would pass we made the best of time we had there.

Once most of the scabbing was healed

I won’t tell you the names of the places we went and explored but will share a few photos. I strongly believe that you should go out and explore and try to keep places as secluded as possible to keep in clean and peaceful. Unfortunately there is a big problem in Tofino and Uclulet with littering. There is a place called Rainbow beach that has become absolutely disgusting. We have picked up 6 bags of trash in one day and the next weekend it was like it had never been cleaned.

Abandoned vehicle in the logging roads

So please for those who decide to visit these beautiful town, be respectful. Be respectful to the locals, the the town, the wildlife and the forest.

“Take nothing but pictures, leave nothing but footsteps.”

Snorkeling is magical places
Finding something we weren’t looking for.
Camping at it’s finest.
Beautiful swimming pools in a river.

A challenging career

So I finally decided that I would take the time to go in to detail on what exactly do I do for a living. In this blog ill write about how and why I became a carpenter and a bit about what it’s like to be a female in the industry.

Now I won’t say it that it wasn’t a little bit of a chock when I decided to go from working in a cozy office in Gatineau, Quebec to working in the blistering cold of Edmonton, Alberta 5 years ago. I was just about to turn 20 years old when I decided to join my older brother out west, he was kind enough to give me a job doing roof trusses. I won’t lie, back then I didn’t think I would be where I am today.

I won’t sugar coat it. My days on a construction site have often been hard. Between the amount of sexist people who still exist in the industry and just the basic conditions of a construction worker, I’ve thought of leaving the industry so many times. I’ve been under paid, gotten my butt grabbed, I’ve been harassed, yelled at, I’ve hurt my self, gotten heatstrokes, been flooded to my underwear and cold to the point where I thought my fingers we’re breaking ,the list goes on. It would be a lie to say this career hasn’t made me cry. But I love it.

Yes I know, that sounds insane, but I really do I love my job.

I love working outdoors. I love building houses. I love working with my hands and learning everyday. As much as I hate it, I love the rain falling on my face on a hot summer day , or the beautiful snowflakes, insulting the sound on a job site during a snowstorm when most have stayed home. I love that I can work with Derick and have him by my side through all of my challenges.I started off as a labour who barely knew how to hammer in a nail to becoming part of the 1% of female carpenters in Canada.

Today I work for Vineuve construction, a wonderful company that makes me feel safe and respected as women and gives Derick and I the opportunity to work in different towns and Islands. I can’t express how important yet hard that is to find.

Funky Friday’s

My word to you, if you want to enter the industry, do it. Keep you head high and don’t let anyone talk you down. It might be the best decision you’ve ever made.