Friday, 30 January 2009

Big Black Boots Long Brown Hair

Friday Faff: Actually on Friday This Week! Edition

First things first, I managed to wear my dress today!

In other news, my kitchen is very messy. And my mirror needs a good wipe.

Kate asked if my outfit includes boots but sadly, it does not. My large calf muscles prevent me from wearing boots with dresses. I cannot find boots that zip all the way to the top so I only wear them under pants. Which kind of defeats the purpose of having nice boots. It is sad.

Thanks for the puppies' paws suggestions. I sincerely doubt that Stella will wear booties but she might let me put wax on her paws. She'll probably try to eat it off but it's worth a shot.

I think I might be breaking up with the PediPaws. I don't think I have the patience for Stella's Evade the PediPaws shenanigans. I'll give it another shot this weekend after tiring her out at the dog park but I'm not hopeful. She's too strong-willed. And by that I mean I'm too lazy to fight her.

Happy Friday, everyone!

Thursday, 29 January 2009

Not A Letter From An Occupant

Dear Boy I Had A Major Crush On In Highschool Who I Literally Ran Into On The Street Outside My Building This Morning:

I haven't seen you in, oh, eight years or so but you are still looking good. Your dimples are as cute as ever. I just wanted to let you know that usually I brush my hair before I leave the house in the morning but this morning I was a bit rushed. I wear makeup now too! (but not until I get to work because, you know, there's no point in wasting valuable sleeping time putting on mascara because really, who sees me before I get to work? Oh that's right, today you saw me.) Also, I don't normally wear wrinkled trousers to work - I do know how to work an iron, I just didn't have time this morning. Actually, I was planning on wearing my cute little wool dress today with adorable dark red tights, but then it was raining and it looked cold and I didn't have time to check the weather network so I just threw on the first thing I found in my closet. In the dark (because Shawn's not working this morning.) So Boy I Had A Major Crush On In Highschool, if you could maybe try to picture me wearing the cute wool dress with the adorable red tights, with brushed hair and makeup on, instead of all wrinkled and disheveled like I actually was, I'd much appreciate it.

The Wrinkly One

PS: I did not appreciate your tone when you asked "So are you living around here?" Yes, there is a lot of crack in my neighbourhood but there is no crack in my house and that is an important distinction to make. Besides, you're the one going to school there. What are you learning to be? A crack dealer? Oh snap!

PPS: It would have been nice if you could have worked your schedule into our conversation somehow so that I could, you know, take the other route to the train station on those days. Just sayin'.

Dear Lady On The Train Who Sat In The Middle Of The Floor And Read A Newspaper:

Was it necessary to sit on the floor? If you really couldn't stand for the thirty minutes it takes to get downtown, you could have asked for a courtesy seat. People are jerks but I've been riding the train for over a year now and I've never seen anyone outright refuse to give up a courtesy seat when asked. By sitting on the floor, you were taking up about the same amount of floor space of four standing passengers. Could you feel the rage of the 60 other train passengers directed toward you? Maybe you shouldn't take the train during rush hour. Just a suggestion.

A Disgruntled Passenger

Dear Shawn,

Hypothetically speaking, if your wife devotes a large portion of her evening (every evening, for a week!) painting the condo, acceptable comments for you to make would include:

"Wow! You are such a good painter!"
"Your painting talent amazes me!"
"This is the best paint job I have ever seen!"

Unacceptable comments include (but are not limited to):

"You didn't use painter's tape to make a crease?"
and "I'm not criticizing your work, I'm just saying that if you used painter's tape, it would look better!"

Your wife knows how painter's tape works, in theory. You wife also knows (FROM EXPERIENCE) that it doesn't really work that well and it's easier to just touch up the uneven crease later.

The One Who Makes Your Dinner And Will Spit In Said Dinner If You Make Any More Snotty Comments About The Quality Of The Paint Job

Dearest Wolfgang,

I know that my arrival home from work is the highlight of your day. I realize that it is a Very! Exciting! Thing! and sometimes you can't contain yourself. Was it really necessary to headbutt me in the mouth, though? My tooth is still throbbing. I don't have dental insurance and if I need to go to the dentist because of this, it's coming directly out of your college fund.

The One Who Can't Put Any Pressure On Her Front Tooth Without Pain

Dear Vancouver Canucks:

You had a 3-1 lead. How could you lose 5-3? To Nashville, the lowest scoring team in the Western Conference. Smarten up!

A Former Fan

Tuesday, 27 January 2009

Cause Andy You're A Star In Nobody's Eyes But Mine

I stayed up late to watch the tennis last night (damn you Andy Roddick and your adorable tennis player's bum) so my brain is fried today. Instead of a coherent post, I've got Tuesday Randomness. Enjoy!

It's snowing again in Vancouver and it is making me stabby. Wolfgang refuses to go outside when the temperature dips below zero and Stella is having a nasty foot issue because of the salt on the sidewalks. After each walk, I put her in an inch of warm water in the bathtub and try to soak the salt out from between her pads but she still licks and licks and licks until her feet are red and raw. The puppies and I would appreciate the arrival of Spring soon, mmmkay?

Speaking of puppies and foot issues, I recently bought a PediPaws nail trimmer. Stella loses her shit whenever I try to clip her nails and I am really anxious about clipping them too short and hurting her. So I've got the PediPaws and I've read the instruction booklet about how to introduce it to your puppy, and I've watched the online video demonstration, but Stella is having none of it. She will sniff the PediPaws and let me hold it near her while it's on (but only if I've got a treat I'm bribing her with) but as soon as I try to get near her paw, she's off and running. Does anyone have a PediPaws and/or expert advice on how to use it on a non-cooperative dog?

I won Angella's itunes contest a few weeks ago and just spent my itunes dollars. I bought David Usher's new EP Live From Montreal, Fleet Foxes' self-titled album, and Hideaway by The Weepies. If I was spending real money instead of free money, I probably wouldn't buy Live From Montreal. It's a bit of a luxury item because I already own all of David Usher's albums so I've already got the songs featured on the live EP. I'm glad I got it though because it is fabulous. He plays around with his songs when he plays them live, so although I've already got the songs, I now have different versions of them. The Weepies album is great, though there really isn't a stand out song for me yet. Fleet Foxes ... well ... I think I am just not cool enough to get Fleet Foxes. I had read a lot about the band and I think I may have hyped them up too much in my mind. I've only listened to the entire album once though, so maybe I just need a few more listen-throughs before I like it. Maybe Fleet Foxes are an acquired taste? What are you listening to and loving right now? I could also use some book recommendations too, if anyone's got any.

Monday, 26 January 2009

But I Woke Up To Real Life

Rachel at I'm a Mom in Real Life is hosting a giveaway and all you have to do is vote for her comic. So do it. Then blog about it to get extra entries because you're easy (like me!)

It's Never Too Late We've Still Got Time

I realize that having another Friday Faff: Monday Edition in the space of one month is a little lame but I can't help it. Work made me brain dead on Friday and whenever I went to pick up my laptop on the weekend I was distracted by either A: blue skies or B: the Australian Open. The weather has been bizarrely foggy lately so there was no end to the excitement over Blue! Skies! and sunshine. We spent hours outside with the pups, introducing Wolfgang to Stella's favourite dog park (and a feisty year-old Weimaraner, which he was none too pleased about) and trying to wear out Stella's puppy fervour. Obviously I had to balance all the fresh air and exercise out with a hefty dose of television watching, which was achieved by watching approximately 87 hours of the Australian Open. It's not my fault though - tennis is strangely hypnotic. I'd try to turn it off but I couldn't resist the urge to watch one more game, just one more I promise. And then it would be three hours later and Roger Federer would have just fought back to tie Tomas Berdych at two sets apiece, and how could I turn it off without knowing who would end up winning the match? (Federer)

Right, so, Friday Faff.

Your painting suggestions were all really helpful. I'd like to be able to say that I spent all weekend painting and have photographic proof of it, but that would be a giant lie. I did, however, decide what the colour scheme will be (but I can't tell you until I actually finish paining because if it looks like crap I'm totally redoing it.)

I tried to videotape the pups doing cute things this weekend but they were having none of it. As soon as I'd point the camera at them they'd sit and stare back at me. Meanwhile I'm shouting "Dance, monkey! Dance!" to no avail.

Vanessa, the pups do not stay in Time Out. There is no trick. When Stel is being completely horrible to Wolfgang, we put her on a chair and stand in front of it so she can't jump off. As soon as we move, she leaves. She does not acknowledge Time Out.

I didn't realize the ear chewing thing was a sign of affection or dominance, I just thought Stella was being an asshole. I do worry about infection because Wolfgang's ear does end up completely wet, inside and out. I've actually stuck a tissue in his ear and it's come out quite damp, like there was a pool of Stella drool in there. Wolfgang has actually started chewing Stella's ear now, so I'm hoping that it will break Stella of her habit (Wolfgang actually breaks the skin of Stel's ear with his pointy little puppy teeth.) Wolfgang gets his rabies vaccination in three weeks so I think I'll just ask the vet if he has any suggestions on how to get them to stop. Until then I'll just fret.

Oh! Oh! My bank has decided that I'm not a fraudster and I got my money back! Happy days.

There, that's it. I'm all faffed out.

Thursday, 22 January 2009

Why Don't You Scratch My Back And Chew The Tongue I Chew

Since we brought home Wolfgang, Stella has pretty much stopped chewing socks, shoes and towels. I would be really happy about this if it wasn't for the fact that she has stopped chewing household items because she has found a better chewing item - namely, Wolfgang's ears.

She pins him to the floor and goes to town on his poor ears. She's not trying to eat his ears - she has never broken the skin - she just likes to gnaw on them. Wolfgang is very zen about it; he lets her chew, only letting out a little yelp if she accidentally chews too hard.

I have no idea how to get her to stop. We've got a nasty-smelling spray that we use to keep Stella from chewing the furniture but I can't really coat Wolfgang in it, can I?

The reason I want her to stop is that it can't be good for Wolfgang to always be walking around with wet ears. Stella drools all over him when she chews and he ends up with sopping wet ears (inside and out.) I don't want him to end up with an ear infection.

this is my favourite picture of the pups because it looks like they're hugging

Nom nom nom ... that was a tasty ear

If you've got two dogs, have you ever had this problem? If so, how did you fix it?

Hello Hello I've Got What You're Searching For

Hello to my new reader / commenter LAB who is now one of my favourites due to the following:
1 - In her first comment, she told me she loves pictures of Stella and Wolfgang, and 2 - When I clicked over to her blog, her most recent post is about food. Puppies and food! What's not to love?

It's been ages since I last posted about the pups (and by ages I mean oohhh ... a week?) so here are some recent photos:

Anyone who has a puppy will recognize that my pups are not staring at me with intense love, they are willing me to drop the treat I'm holding. I tried to flip Stella's ear over properly to take another photo but the spell was broken.

Wolfgang acting like a tough guy. All five pounds of him.

A very frowny Stella having a Time Out.

That bone is the only reason Wolfgang still has a face. When he gets extra annoying, Stella will grab her bone and start gnawing away at it while staring intently at Wolfie. It's a little scary. And a lot funny.

Wednesday, 21 January 2009

The Paint's Peeling Off The Streets Again - UPDATED With Photos

Thank you for all your comments so far, I am finding them very helpful.

I took some photos last night to clarify my problem.

Let's start with my diagram.
I wanted to give you an idea of the layout of the rest of the condo. The fireplace area is our "living room" - this is where our couch, tv and coffee table are. The other half of the room is where our dining room table and chairs are. That area flows into the kitchen. The hallway highlighted in pink (painted light green) leads to our bathroom and bedroom. The den is off the kitchen and will remain unpainted as Shawn has told me, in no uncertain terms, not to mess with Manland.

Right. So. Moving on.

This is the reason I had not attempted to paint the wall. Don't ask me what all those plugs and wires are for. I don't know what they're for, I just know they're all necessary to run Shawn's System (which totally deserves to be capitalized and when said out loud, should be said in an awestruck tone of voice.)

I could not take an accurate picture of the shades of green because I had no natural light, so imagine these greens but less yellow.
These are walls A, B and C. Sorry for the poor picture quality. I have no excuses.

Honestly, I'm very hesitant to paint C (the white surrounding the fireplace.) That being said, I think it might look silly if I paint B (wall behind the fireplace) and leave the fireplace white. Also, I feel like A need to be painted the lighter colour to create division in the room ("dining room" would be olive green, "living room" would be light green.)

I have no idea what to do but I can't leave it the way it is. Right now it looks like we ran out of paint before finishing the job.

Tuesday, 20 January 2009

The Paint's Peeling Off The Streets Again

I started painting our condo back in November. I reached a point where I was happy to stop, so I did. Lately, though, I've been bothered by one wall. I had originally left it white because all of Shawn's toys plug into that wall, guaranteeing a massive headache for anyone who tries to unplug / unscrew / untangle them. I convinced myself that the white wall provided "contrast." I cannot continue to live the lie.

I have decided to paint the white wall.

This has presented a new problem. The wall in question (A) borders another white wall (B.) The wall has a protrusion (C,) which houses our electric fireplace. The problem is this:

Do I paint only wall A? Do I paint A + B? A + B + C? And then there is the question of colour. Currently, our living room / dining room / hallway (our condo is open concept) is painted both a light, neutral green and a dark, olive green. Which colour should I paint A? B? C? Or do we choose a new colour? This screams for a diagram:
Right, so in my diagram:

Blue = dark, olive green
Pink = light, neutral green
Red = glass wall

A, B, and C are currently painted white. C is pretty much a box with a wooden mantel and an electric fireplace housed in it.

I feel like A should be painted the light, neutral green. I have no idea what to do about B or C. I feel like if B is painted, C needs to also be painted but I'm not sure how a painted fireplace would look.

Shawn feels like we should paint A the dark, olive green because he likes it better than the light. He feels like B and C should be painted a "dark, reddish brown." I know, right? Where the eff did that come from?

Thoughts / ideas / opinions are welcome! Especially if yours thoughts / ideas / opinions are of the "reddish brown paint is stupid" persuasion.

(It should be noted that the furniture we have in the space (couch, recliner, coffee table, 2 shelving units, dining table and chairs) is all either black or very dark brown.)

Friday, 16 January 2009

Take The Beet From Your Ground Cut The Grapes From Your Vine

Friday Faff: Bandits, Blow-ups, and Beets Edition


I haven't heard anything from my bank yet but I'm not surprised. They have a two week period to complete their investigation so I'm guessing I won't hear from them until the 26th. I'm trying not to worry. I haven't written my strongly-worded letters yet because I still feel shouty. Shouty and annoyed. I had to change my PIN and it is really messing with me. Hi, my name is Hillary and I do not love change.


I refrained from eating my body weight in chocolate. Things are still a bit prickly at home but it's nothing a little homemade pizza, funny movies, and chocolate ice cream won't fix. Hi, my name is Hillary and I am old and boring and prefer to spend Friday night on my couch.


The reason I'm forcing myself to eat beets 12 times this year (1 down! 11 more to go) is because I feel like I am not as responsible as I should be when it comes to my fruit and vegetable consumption. Basically, I latch onto fruits and vegetables that I like and ignore the rest. I can pretend that I'm a healthy eater because I had vegetables for dinner but how healthy is it, really, to eat nothing but sweet potatoes for a week? And then after a week, I'm bored of sweet potatoes and move onto something else. It's ridiculous. My goal with the beets is to get my mind to accept that it's okay to eat food that you like but it's also okay to force yourself to eat food that you don't like. When I was a kid, my mom made me eat everything she served. It didn't matter that beets made me want to vomit - if she cooked beets, I was eating beets. I find myself being overly casual with my eating habits now, to make up for the rigid eating habits forced on me when I was a kid. If I want to drink nothing but coffee all morning, I call it breakfast. If I want to eat chocolate for lunch, I let myself. I'm not saying that I need to eat beets every day but I do feel like I need to be a bit stricter with how I view food. Hi, my name is Hillary and I have food issues.

The beets I made were roasted. Everything I read said to leave the skins on while roasting, to preserve the nutrients, so I just gave them a good scrub and cut the tops off. I covered them with olive oil, salt, minced garlic and fresh rosemary. I roasted them in a foil packet for an hour until they were mushy and then peeled them.

I am intrigued by pickled beets. Can someone describe them to me? Are they pickled like pickles? I love pickles. Do they come in a jar? Do they taste like non-pickled beets or is the beet-flavour (aka dirt) masked?

I haven't decided how February's beets will be prepared but I'm leaning towards borscht. Does anyone have a recipe they want to share?

Thursday, 15 January 2009

Just Beat It Beat It Beat It Beat It No One Wants To Be Defeated

I ate beets.

I tried to like them, I really did.

I put a lot of effort into make them tasty.

It didn't work.

The rest of the dinner was amazing, though, and I did manage to eat every last thing on my plate (nasty beets included.)

I have amended my resolution. I will no longer force myself to like beets but I will attempt to eat beets once a month for one year.  Give me strength. 

Wednesday, 14 January 2009

I'm Not Angry But I've Never Been Above It

Shawn and I fought last night. Not a loud fight. There was no name-calling. No ultimatums. It was a quiet fight; voices were steady; True Things were said. I hate fights that involve True Things. Noisy fights are easier to ignore. They flare up and are intense and fast and then they end and you can move on. You don't need to analyse noisy fights. Fights where True Things are said are fights that need to be taken seriously. Action needs to be taken. Change must be implemented. To dismiss True Things is to dismiss your partner and I cannot think of a more hurtful thing to do to someone than to dismiss their feelings.

The adage "don't go to bed angry" is not practiced in our relationship. A resolution cannot be found until we have both had time to cool off and mull over the situation independently, which means that sometimes (like last night) we go to bed angry. We hug the edge of the bed and jerk our feet away when they inadvertently find each other under the covers.

This morning we awkwardly navigated through our morning routine without making eye contact. It feels silly - but necessary - to shut myself off from this person who I love the most, who has the capacity to hurt me the most. I know that we will be fine, that this is just another reminder that anything worth having takes effort. An effortless relationship is a myth. We will be fine; we will muddle through this like we've muddled through everything else and soon we'll be back to that easy place. It's just difficult to see the light at the end of the tunnel when my eyes feeling crackly from too many tears and my brain is tired from unsettled sleep.

Today feels like a 2 chocolate bar day, stupid eat more vegetables resolution be damned.

Tuesday, 13 January 2009

Fight Fight Fight Don't Howl Like A Dog

I don't want my cuss-filled rant to be the first thing people see when they come to my blog (though I am still feeling cussy) but I don't have much to say today. Instead of ranting some more, I'm going through my camera's memory card and posting photos of my pups. Because really, what cheers me up more than pictures of cute puppies? (Dear Jess, thank you for emailing me a picture of your new pup. It did cheer me up. Love Hillary)

Chicken is Stella's crack. This picture demonstrates how lucky we are that Stella stopped growing. If she had grown even one inch more, the contents of our countertops would not be safe.

Wolfgang is learning the 'sit' command. He hasn't quite grasped that he needs to be commanded to sit before getting a treat. His new trick is to walk in front of us, make eye contact, deliberately sit, and then look at us like "hey, where's my biscuit?" Stella is full of disdain.

I wish that I could say that this is a shot of the pups cuddling (Stella is the big spoon and Wolfgang is the little spoon!) but that would be a lie.

This is the sequence leading up to the above photo:

the staredown

the strike

the action

It resulted in both puppies being tuckered out, lying beside each other on the couch, half-heartedly chewing the other's face.

My puppies crack me up even when I'm in a foul mood.

Monday, 12 January 2009

He Ain't Messing With No Two-Bit Bandit

This post could also be called "I Am So Fucking Relieved That I Did Not Resolve To Stop Swearing This Year."

I hate Mondays. I hate waking up early, I hate having to actually stay awake after waking up early, I hate going to work instead of staying at home and playing with the puppies.

This Monday was no exception. I woke up grumpy. I didn't get a seat on the train. I got a really fucking obnoxious email from a vendor that concluded with "Good luck - they say learning something new keeps you young!"

Monday was kicking my ass.

Things started to look up after Angella informed me that I won her itunes contest. Instead of Monday kicking my ass, I was kicking Monday's ass. I even posted about it on Twitter.

Within twenty minutes of posting, my bank called me to tell me that my account has been suspended due to "suspicious activity" and could I please come in to resolve the matter. Lesson learned: do not taunt Monday.

I went to my bank and learned that my chequing account was emptied this morning. Completely emptied. Like, there is zero dollars and zero cents left in my chequing account. Not only that, but I had just transferred my fucking car payment into my chequing account. On top of that, the fucking bandit who did this used an abm at the branch I normally frequent (the one that is six fucking blocks from where I live) to empty my account so instead of just reimbursing me immediately (like they did the one other time this happened to me) the bank has to launch a full investigation. I can expect to hear from them in ten business days as to whether or not I can expect to see my money again.

The other time this happened to me, I had used a free-standing atm in a convenience store. It was obviously sketchy but I used it anyway. I was lucky because my account was drained from an atm in Alberta on the same day that I tried to withdraw money in Vancouver. I learned my lesson and started only using abms connected to my bank. I also rarely use my debit card. The woman who helped my file my fraud complaint today said that the only way my information could have been stolen (which is the only way my account could have been drained seeing as my actual debit card was not stolen) is through an altered debit machine. I have used my debit card twice in the last few weeks, both at businesses directly across the street from my building. Those businesses can expect a strongly-worded letter from me, which will be copied to the police and my bank. I will wait to write those letters until I'm less shouty. To say that I am fucking livid would be putting it mildly.

The situation is not as grim as it could have been. My savings account is only accessible online, so even though my chequing account was drained, my savings remained untouched and I have enough in my savings to cover my car payment. The bank lady said she is almost certain I will get my money back as soon as the investigators pull the images from the abm camera and match it to the time my account was emptied. Unless the person who accessed my account looks like me, I should be fine. But you know what? I don't want to fucking acknowledge that I'm lucky right now. I'm just so fucking annoyed. Right now I want to swear a lot and pout and rant about the douchemonkey who stole my money.

Mascara Bleeds A Blackened Tear

Friday Faff: Monday Edition (I may have just cringed as I typed that)

I loved your comments regarding my New Year's Inevitable Events. I'd just like to clarify something though: I am not resolving to drink less alcohol, I am resolving to buy less alcohol. God gave me boobies for a reason and if procuring free alcohol isn't the reason, I don't know what is. Ha, I love the word boobies. Sorry.

Anyway. Thank you for your suggestions on how to make beets palatable. I'm not sure that I believe you, but I'll try. I hadn't thought of roasting them. When I was a kid, my mom would steam them (with the greens) and they'd be all soggy and limp and I have to stop thinking about it now because I just threw up in my mouth a little.

The reason I want to wear mascara to work every day is because I look like death without it. I have pale skin and pale eyes and pale eyelashes. Mascara makes me look human. (Elle Bee: I'm not naturally beautiful. I'm lazy. But thanks!) The Over-Thinker suggested that I wait until I get to work before applying my mascara. The Over-Thinker is a genius.

Thank you for your thoughts on my male/female doctor dilemma. (Especially thanks to Meg, who emailed me her doctor's contact info.) I'm still not sure where I stand. I think the main reason I'm hesitant to see a male doctor is that I'm someone who learns by doing. I know that some people learn by reading or by observing but I need to do something, actually experience something, before I can grasp it. I guess I find it difficult to accept that a male doctor could know as much as a female doctor about lady bits without actually owning said lady bits. Clearly I need to stop thinking so much and just find a damn doctor.

So there you go, I am all faffed out. Time for me to go apply some mascara.

Saturday, 10 January 2009

We Didn't Start The Fire It Was Always Burning

Shawn and I used to live in an older building with a fire alarm system that consisted of a single bell in the hallway of each floor. Our unit was at the end of the hallway so it was easy to sleep through the false alarms that seemed to happen monthly (our building was a bit sketchy - people were constantly trying to get into the building because there was unlimited floor access once you got in the front door.) Shawn would always wake up when the alarm went off and try to shake me awake. He swears that once when he was trying to wake me, I punched him in the arm and yelled, "I don't smell burning!" before rolling over and falling back asleep. I have no memory of this. 

Last night we were woken by a fire alarm. We've lived in our condo for over a year and hadn't experienced a fire alarm yet. We also hadn't figured out what the speaker in our bedroom ceiling was. There is one in the kitchen ceiling as well so we thought it had something to do with the front door intercom system. It turns out the speakers are the fire alarm and the alarm? Is freaking loud. It felt like someone was holding an air horn by my head. 

We bundled up, grabbed the pups and headed out into the rain. The highlight of the night came when I turned to Shawn and said, "I do smell burning!" and he just sighed and told me we were standing next to a group of people who were smoking. In my defense, it was half past three in the morning and I have a cold. That's my story and I'm sticking to it. 

After half an hour of standing in the rain, we were allowed back in the building. We got in the door and both pups immediately peed on the kitchen floor to voice their displeasure at being woken up so rudely. Shawn and I made a pot of tea to try to warm ourselves up and got back into bed. We finished the tea, turned out the light, and with perfect comic timing, the fire alarm went off again.  We debated getting dressed and heading back outside but Shawn vetoed that idea because he couldn't smell burning. How could I argue with his logic? Fortunately the alarm stopped within a few minutes.

You would think that the pups - after being awake from half past three until four in the morning, after having a pee at four in the morning, and after having a few biscuits to tide them over until a more respectable hour - would have slept in past six. You would be wrong. 

Today has not been a fun day and to top it off, it started snowing again this afternoon. I am shaking my fist at the universe right now. 

Thursday, 8 January 2009

Trust Your Mechanic To Mend Your Car Bring It In To His Garage He Tightens And Loosens A Few Spare Parts One Thing's Fixed Another Falls Apart

Back in October I wrote about why I need to find a new doctor. Receiving your supportive comments lifted a huge weight off my shoulders. Unfortunately, it also quelled the urgency of my search. I did attempt to find a new doctor but my efforts were both fruitless and halfhearted. I wasn't worrying about the situation anymore so it was very easy to push it to the back of my mind and forget about it.

I went to a walk-in clinic a few months ago when I was having the skin issues and the doctor who treated me was fabulous. She is not, unfortunately, accepting new patients but she did give me a refill prescription for my birth control. I have two months left until I enter the danger zone. Unless I want to end up with a baby (words can not express how deeply I DO NOT WANT a baby right now,) I need to find a new doctor.

My friends have been little help as they either a: hate their doctor but don't want to bother with finding a new one, b: don't have a doctor and only frequent walk-in clinics or c: have a doctor whose office is not easily accessible to me. I'm operating under the assumption that I should be able to find a doctor within easy travel distance of either my home or office. Silly me.

British Columbia has a website that lists physicians who are currently accepting new patients. You enter your search parameters (city, preferred gender, languages spoken, etc) and you are given the contact information of all the physicians that match your criteria and are accepting new patients. It's an extremely helpful tool but it's also really disheartening when you find out that there are six female doctors currently accepting patients and none of the six are in the city where you live or close to your office (note to website: users should be able to specify that they are searching for doctors in downtown Vancouver, not just Vancouver.)

So now I'm wondering if I'm pushing the "my doctor must be female!" thing too far. Do you require that your doctor be the same gender as you are? Are you comfortable with a doctor who isn't? My issue isn't with trust, it's with comfort. Somehow I can't see myself being as comfortable talking about lady bits with someone who does not possess them. It's like taking your car to a mechanic who doesn't own a car. Sure he's studied cars, he's looked at pictures of cars, he's seen cars in real life, he's driven cars - the thing is, he doesn't own a car. He never will own a car. He doesn't know what owning a car feels like. Do you trust your car to this mechanic?

Wednesday, 7 January 2009

You'll Still Be The Same To Me A Comfort And A Mystery

Today my dad's mom, my last remaining grandparent, turns 93 years old. Happy Birthday, Gram!

Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Stuck To The Goal To Rescue My Skin

I'm not very good at keeping New Year's resolutions.

Last year I resolved to wear mascara to work every day, lose 10 pounds, conquer my sweet tooth and to be more patient, less moody, and be more of an optimist.

I failed at every one.

Though I did lose a bit of weight, I doubt it was 10 pounds. My sweet tooth continues unabated. I am not patient. I am very moody. I am not an optimist. And every morning, when I had to choose between an extra minute of sleep or mascara? Sleep won. Every time. Wearing mascara is the easiest resolution. It takes 20 seconds to apply. I have mascara. I know how to use mascara. I just don't.

2009 will be different. 2009 is my year. 2009 is the year when I start wearing makeup to work, every day (uh, starting tomorrow.) 2009 is the year when I will become less "I don't care if the glass is half-empty, it's a stupid glass anyway and I never wanted it" and more glass half-full of wonderfulness. I will become toned; 2009 will be the year of visible abs. I will get insurance so that I can't use the expense as an excuse to avoid the dentist. I will be rid of my pityriasis rosea (soon! I would like to be rid of it soon!) I will continue to use "Let. Go." as my mantra in the hopes that it will make me more patient and less crazy (hey, you've got to dream big, right?) I will train Wolfgang to not pee in the house. I will train Stella to stop jumping up on people. I will save more money. I will buy less clothes, cds, books, alcohol, and brand-name ice cream. I will eat more vegetables. I will attempt to like beets. I will try to stop taking Shawn for granted. I will try to be more supportive of his stupid hobbies (which include washing his car, talking about his car, reading about cars on the internet, watching car videos on the internet and ordering random (expensive!) parts for his car.)

These are not resolutions; they are inevitable events.

Or maybe they're just blog fodder for next year's New Year's post.

Monday, 5 January 2009

Carbon's Anniversary The Parting Of The Sensory - 5

Dear Shawn,

Our 5 Monthiversary was yesterday but I missed it. I blame it on the fact that we were both in bed all day yesterday (and not for fun reasons either - for sick, cough-y, headache-y, snotty reasons.)

This past month was a bit rough. We both had various family situations to deal with and we (I) may have taken it out on each other (you.) Sorry about that. Christmas has always been a difficult time of year for me but I am resolving to change that. I want to break the cycle and have wonderful Christmas memories with you instead of weepy ones. Next year = Operation Christmas Fabulousness. You've been warned.

Family drama aside, it wasn't a bad month. We had a lot of fun adjusting to our new family of four. Wolfgang has turned out to be the suckiest puppy - always trying to climb into a lap for a cuddle. It's been interesting to watch you with the pups; sometimes I see a glimmer of the dad you might-hypothetically-no-pressure-someday be.

Love you, dude.


Sunday, 4 January 2009

Fall Dog Bombs The Moon

I'm over at Who's Your Dachshund today, spreading the crazy. 

Friday, 2 January 2009

Death By Chocolate Is Myth

There were 23 items in your list. Here they are in random order:

  1. JulyBug
  2. Meghan
  3. Bridge
  4. Maxie
  5. Nilsa
  6. Jamie Lovely
  7. Alice
  8. Melanie
  9. Sharon
  10. Marie
  11. Mermanda
  12. Georgia
  13. Katelin
  14. Angella
  15. Sarah
  16. Meg
  17. Aine
  18. 3carnations
  19. Jess
  20. Nate Ring
  21. doahleigh
  22. Over-Thinker
  23. Green
JulyBug, email me your address (ninjahills at gmail dot com) and I will send you some yummy chocolate.