Thursday, 31 December 2009

Yes I Am Blind But I Do See

I can't actually see what I'm typing right now - the words are one big blur on my laptop screen. I'm hoping that my keyboard skills have kicked in and I'm typing real words and not a load of gibberish.

I haven't been able to read any blogs for days so I feel very removed from everything and everyone. It's a bit odd, actually. I go months without speaking to my little sister and that's normal but I go a few days without reading my favourite blogs and I feel discombobulated. I hope that everything is well and everyone has a fabulous, drama-free New Years Eve. I will be spending New Years Eve in bed with my rockstar husband (I cannot even tell you how good to me he has been since the surgery) and my crazy puppies and a large wheel of brie. Jealous? I would be. It's a really large wheel of cheese :)

Tuesday, 29 December 2009

You Got To Burn To Shine

So. The laser eye surgery. I did it. Well, I didn't perform the surgery but I did lie there without crying and/or screaming. It was ... successful? I guess? I don't know. I'm feeling very desperate today. My world is blurry and burny and all I want to do is itch my eyeballs but I can't. The nurse taught me more than I ever wanted to know about infection so I've been even more neurotic than usual about washing my hands and not touching my face.

I've been trying to read blogs but it's difficult to read my computer screen (it's taken me fifteen minutes to type this.) I attempted to finish my book (I'm 20 pages away from finishing a murder mystery and it is KILLING ME that I can't see the words on the page) but I failed. Daytime television is mind-numbingly dull. I'm very complainy. I'm sorry. I know that in a week I will be laughing at how wimpy I'm being right now.

Things aren't all bad. Shawn is being a giant sweetheart. I ate ice cream for breakfast. My puppies know something is wrong so they're being less jumpy and more cuddley. Things are okay. They will be better later but for now they're okay.

Monday, 28 December 2009

Jumping Music Swift D.J.s Smoke Machines And Laser Rays

I'm having laser eye surgery in two hours. I am feeling a bit ... jittery. I didn't sleep much last night so I'm relying on caffeine to keep me awake this morning. My coffee/stress diet is always a bad plan but I always resort to it when I'm in survival mode. It's silly but I am in survival mode right now. I feel like I can't tell anyone how scared I am for this surgery because it's something I've chosen to do. It's not necessary. I don't have to do it. Perfect vision is something that I want. I just ... don't want to have to have surgery to get it.

So I'm here. Watching the clock. Wishing away the minutes so that I can go get it over with. Trying not to cry when Shawn makes the "bzzzzz" noise and points at my eyes because he really does think that I'm stronger than I am and that I'm not scared. Which is ridiculous because I'm the lady who hasn't been to the dentist in over two years because of the anxiety attacks that hit as soon as the dentist chair reclines.

The good news it that I went Boxing Day shopping and splurged on new bed stuff. I got a pillow-top mattress pad and new king-sized pillows and a fluffy new duvet and duvet cover. Paired with the new Egyptian-cotton sheets and soft, flannel pyjamas that my mom gave me for Christmas, our bed is somewhere that I'm looking forward to spending the next few days in. Plus there are two kinds of ice cream in my freezer. And a nine-hour audiobook (The Sweetness At the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley) and thirty-five podcasts (You Look Nice Today) on my ipod. I'm as prepared as I can be, is what I'm saying.

Sunday, 27 December 2009

The Main Thing That We Do Is To Rock Your Socks Off

Dear Shawn,

Twenty nine pairs of socks. What did you expect when you told everyone that you wanted new socks for Christmas?

Love Hillary

Tuesday, 22 December 2009

Just Beat It Beat It Beat It Beat It No One Wants To Be Defeated - Take 12

Operation: Cook a Salmonella-Free Turkey Dinner was a huge success. I was overwhelmed (in a good way) by all of your suggestions; I didn't know which recipes to choose. I ended up using Nigella's method for cooking the turkey because Nigella can do no wrong. The turkey was delicious but to be honest, I'm more of a side dish kind of gal.

My dinner, in all of its gluttonous glory:

Clockwise from the top:
turkey with cranberry orange sauce, garlic smashed potatoes with gravy, Meg's brussel sprouts (steamed and then sautéed in butter, brown sugar, and pecans), maple balsamic roasted beets (ewww beets but also yay! December beets!), sweet potato mash with an unfortunate topping of burnt-ass (why yes, that is the technical term) marshmallows, and not-cooked-in-the-bird stuffing of my own recipe that featured bacon (heck yes), dried cranberries, apples, and caramelized onions (which is just a fancy way of saying that I burned the onions and was too lazy to chop more so I used the burnt ones.)

For dessert (because we weren't already bursting at the seams) we had pecan bourbon pie with bourbon caramel sauce and pumpkin chiffon pie. It was ridiculous.

The pups were being irresistibly cute so more than one person slipped them a few morsels of turkey, resulting in what may be the cutest thing I've ever seen, the Puppy Turkey Coma:

Tryptophan Overdose

I'm glad that I attempted the full turkey dinner but I seriously doubt I'll do it again. It took two full days of cooking to finish everything and I still ended up an hour behind schedule, forcing my dad to make the gravy and carve the turkey while I drank bubbly wine and set the fire alarm off with my unfortunate marshmallow / broiler incident. It was a tad stressful. I had leftover pumpkin pie for dinner last night though, so I'm not complaining.

Monday, 21 December 2009

The Licence Plate Said Fresh And It Had Dice In The Mirror

I had a follow-up appointment with my neurologist today. He's fairly confident that I've got a sleep disorder so he's put me on a waiting list for a sleep study. He also reinstated my driving privileges, which is a huge relief. I don't need to drive because we live (and I work) on a transit line but not having my driver's licence was very inconvenient at times. To be honest, I ended up driving whenever I really needed to go somewhere but I spent a lot of time and energy fretting that I'd be pulled over and penalized. It wasn't worth it. Now I don't have to worry; I can drive whenever and wherever I want. It's like I'm the 16-year old, newly-licenced Hillary all over again. I feel like I should go celebrate with some wine coolers in my parents' basement or something.

Thursday, 17 December 2009

I Can See So Far With My Poison Eye

I didn't expect the air freshener debate to be so divided (team Vanilla Tiger!) The only solution, obviously, is to buy both.

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I broke a board last night. With my force. First, though, I punched it and it did not break. Then I cried because, holy fuck do you know how much it hurts to punch a board as hard as you can? A lot. I ended up breaking it with an axe kick. Yeah, I do stuff like axe kicks. I'm pretty much the badassest (totally a word - don't question me, I will axe kick you) blogger around.

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I bought my turkey a few nights ago. I couldn't find a fresh turkey so I had to buy a frozen one. I suspect that I couldn't find a fresh one because I refused to go to the butcher shop (so expensive! so ... meaty!) I moved the turkey from the freezer to the fridge today to start defrosting but I ran into a bit of a dilemma ... do you unwrap the turkey to defrost it? It's in some sort of turkey condom right now, which I like because it's keeping all the scary turkey germs from flying around the inside of my fridge, but I'm afraid that if I don't unwrap it I will end up with a still-frozen turkey on Sunday morning when I go to cook it. Suggestions? Advice? Offers to come cook my turkey? All welcome!

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I am having laser eye surgery in 11 days. I booked it months ago but I didn't blog about it because I was fairly certain that I would back out like the giant scaredy pants that I am. I'm past the point of being able to get my $400 deposit back, though, so I need to tell as many people about the surgery as possible so I will feel like a wiener if I back out. Dudes, if I do not blog about my successful laser eye surgery on December 29th, I fully expect you all to call me names and put me in the shame corner.

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Georgia is a fucking rockstar. Head over to her blog today and give her a high five, please and thanks!

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Don't You Think I'm So Sexy I'm Dressed So Fresh So Clean

I saw these Ed Hardy car air fresheners in the drugstore and couldn't resist snapping a photo. (I apologize for the poor picture quality; my blackberry has a horrible camera.)

I'm pretty sure you're only allowed to buy these if you drive a Hummer. It won't stop me from trying though. So my question is: do I buy Shawn a vanilla Ed Hardy car air freshener for Christmas or a peach Ed Hardy car air freshener?

Monday, 14 December 2009

Dinner At Eight Was Okay Before The Toast Full Of Gleams

Last week in a fit of "I hate family drama, we're getting the fuck out of here for Christmas"-induced rage, I went online and looked up plane tickets. I didn't know where we were going to go, I just knew that I couldn't stay here (and yes, I do realize that I am a bit of a hypocrite for hating my family's drama when I so clearly embrace drama as a way of life.)

It didn't take long for me to realize that Shawn's work schedule plus two rambunctious puppies means that we have to stay in town. My furious searching did lead me to a cheap flight from Montreal to Vancouver, though, proving that rage isn't always unproductive. Shawn called his dad and a few clicks later, his flight was booked. Shawn's dad will be here from December 19th to the 28th.

Which leads me to my next bit of crazy: I decided that I would have my parents over for dinner so they could spend time with Shawn's dad (well, my dad wants to spend time with Shawn's dad, my mom wants to spend time with the puppies.) Due to family drama, my parents aren't having a turkey dinner this year and because Shawn's dad is in Vancouver instead of Montreal, he isn't having a turkey dinner. You can see where this is headed, right? I decided (because I am insane) that I would make a turkey dinner. On Sunday. Six days from now. I have never cooked a turkey before. I need help, peeps, and I'm hoping you will all share your wisdom.

How big should my turkey be? There will be 6 adults eating it.

I don't have a roasting pan so I was just going to buy a disposable aluminum pan. Is this a bad idea?

How long and at what temperature does the turkey need to cook? I have a meat thermometer but I never know where to stick it so I'm not sure that it's completely accurate.

Does anyone have a good stuffing recipe? I've never really eaten stuffing before because it creeps me out that it's cooked inside the turkey but it has recently come to my attention that you can make stuffing outside of the turkey. So I need a recipe for cooked-outside-the-bird stuffing. Also, what is the difference between stuffing and dressing?

I am making garlic smashed potatoes but I need a few more side dishes - what is your favourite Christmas dinner side dish? (Shawn is allergic to carrots and I hate mushrooms. Bonus points if it's a beet recipe!) I was thinking of doing sweet potato mash smothered in mini marshmallows and a green salad but I'm not sure. Is it okay to serve sweet potatoes and regular potatoes? Is green salad lame? I feel like I need a green vegetable and I'm kind of bored of broccoli. Does anyone have a kickass brussel sprout recipe?

For dessert I'm planning to do a bourbon pecan pie and my grandma's pumpkin chiffon pie. I don't have any questions about dessert, I'm just bragging.

Saturday, 12 December 2009

I Say Love It Is A Flower And You Its Only Seed

Last night was my company Christmas party.

I think my favourite part of the night was when the wife of one of my coworkers asked Shawn when we were going to have babies (because, you know, we've been married for a year and that's why people get married ... to have the babies.) He told her (and our entire table of twelve people) that I looked so good in my party dress that he was planning to go straight home to plant his seed.

That wasn't awkward at all.

Thursday, 10 December 2009

And I Get What I Want My Name Is My Credit Card Don't Try To Hate Me Because I Am So Popular

I was not one of the sparkly popular kids in school. My family didn't have a lot of money; I wore my sister's hand-me-down clothes; my parents drove a 15-year-old station wagon (with imitation wood panelling!); we lived in a neighbourhood of families who took annual vacations to places like Palm Springs and Hawaii. It wasn't just my family's financial situation that made me an easy target, though. I was quiet; I got good grades in school; teachers liked me because I did my homework and didn't create any problems. I was a nerd, is what I'm saying. I was a nerd without trendy clothes or exotic vacation stories. I was a nerd before being a nerd was cool. Most of the time I was able to stay under the radar of the beautiful people but occasionally one of the Wretched would take notice of me and make my life miserable. It made me a little mistrustful of the beautiful people. The anxiety doesn't help, of course, but I'm fairly certain that the root of my social awkwardness can be traced back to my angst-ridden days in elementary school. I live my life stumbling from one awkward encounter to the next, relying on my core group of people to provide my comfort zone.

And then a night like tonight happens. Kyla Roma came to Vancouver and asked if I wanted to meet. Kyla Roma is one of the sparkly popular kids of my bloggy world. Her writing is honest and beautiful. Her soul shines through her words. She ... scares me. Seriously. I was excited to meet her but also anxious. Tummy-clenching, speak-too-quickly, forget-to-breathe anxious. Which is silly because obviously she was lovely and sweet and I had a fabulous time. We drank winter ale and ate yam fries and talked about blogging and this may just be the 9% beer talking but I feel like tonight I managed to be kinda sorta un-awkward (Kyla, if you don't agree, please be a darling and pretend that you do!) Nights like tonight make me feel like maybe I can do blogger meet-ups without dying inside. Not anytime soon, mind you, but I'm getting there. Baby steps, people. Baby steps.

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

His Smile's Your Rope So Wrap It Tight Around Your Throat

I had a fabulous weekend, running from one thing to the next; baby kisses here, tequila shots there, with no rest in between. Instead of paring down my weekend's festivities when I started to feel overwhelmed, I added to the craziness whenever a new opportunity arose. When Shawn called at 6 on Saturday evening and said he'd been invited to play a show, I didn't tell him that I was hungover and in my pyjamas and attempting to motivate myself to do my accounting homework. I got dressed and went to the shady bar and held the video camera while simultaneously keeping a death grip on my bag because it seemed like the sort of place where muggings are not uncommon.

(The audio will not sync with the video and I cannot be arsed to sort it out. Sorry.)
(Shawn's playing the bass.)

My body protested when I forced it out into the cold on Sunday, almost as loudly as Robin protested when I forced her to attend the BlogHer Holiday party with me. I can't meet lovely, sparkly people on my own though (especially when I am hungover and so far from sparkly that I cannot even muster a single twinkle,) so she agreed to be my wingwoman. The party was lovely and everyone I spoke to was wonderful and I will definitely be returning to Tempest.

I'm paying for my fantastic weekend now, as I lie in bed dying of the Throat of Doom. I don't want to be home from work; I'm actually feeling quite twitchy as I picture the mounds of paperwork piling up. I'm determined to be better by tomorrow so I can get caught up. I'm meeting Kyla on Thursday and I'll be anxious enough about that without worrying about invoices and germs too.

Sunday, 6 December 2009

A Coffee Shop With A Cause Then I'll Freak You Out

It took me much longer than it should have for me to figure out how to set up my etsy shop but I think I'm finally there. If you love moose-tashes, check it out!

Friday, 4 December 2009

Twisted Diamond Heart I'm The Weekend Warrior

This weekend I will:

nibble on tiny little baby fingers when a good friend visits with her 7-month old bundle of love.

quell my ovaries' treacherous longing by spending time with her almost-3-year old bundle of piss and vinegar.

bake Angella's whipped shortbread (and hopefully whip up some Christmas spirit while I'm at it.)

finish the Christmas stockings I'm making for Shawn's and my stocking stuffer gift exchange.

set up an etsy shop so I can sell my moose-tash keychains.

party like a rockstar to celebrate a lovely lady's birthday.

recuperate from said partying with a Special Ladies' Christmas Brunch and Book Exchange (which is being held at my place. Tomorrow morning. Even though I have not yet cleaned my messy kitchen or bought any food. Eh, details.)

try not to spill anything on myself or swear too much at the Vancouver BlogHer Christmas party. If you're planning to be there, say hi! I will be the socially awkward one with bad hair.

What's on the agenda for your weekend?

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

If We Were Children I Would Bake You A Mud Pie

Things currently making my heart sing:

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All of the sweet comments and emails you guys have sent regarding my last post. You are all rockstars. I hadn't written about the seizures because there wasn't much to say about it. It sucks. It's kind of scary. It's extremely inconvenient (my driver's licence has been suspended until I have a clear brain scan.) And it feels slightly less scary today after writing about it. Thank you for reminding me why I love blogging.

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Fantastic Mr. Fox. I rarely go to the movies but last night Shawn convinced me to go see Fantastic Mr. Fox with him and a few friends. It blew my mind. I spent half the movie grinning like a fool, not because the movie was particularly funny but because it made me so happy.

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One of my favourite feelings in the world: the clean sheets, clean pyjamas, clean Hillary amalgam. I am currently in bed after a brutal workout. I came home and put clean linens on the bed, took a hot shower, and put on my comfiest pyjamas. I am a happy bunny.

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The Them Crooked Vultures album. Dudes. It rocks my effing world.

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What's putting a spring in your step and a smile on your face today?

If Your Head Is High You'll Never Fear At All

The week before I saw my horrid doctor I punched Stella. It was accidental and was actually what prompted me to get over myself and make the damn appointment.

I am not a good sleeper. I talk in my sleep, I wake up multiple times a night, sometimes I sit up in my sleep, sometimes I walk in my sleep, and a few weeks ago I punched my puppy.

For the last few years, I've had seizures while I sleep. My doctor said it was either a sleep disorder or a stress disorder but since it only happened a few times a month on average, it didn't affect me any more than my other sleep issues did.

Until it started happening more regularly. I had ten seizures in the two weeks before I worked up the courage to see my wretched doctor. Then I punched my poor pup and that sealed the deal for me. I made the appointment and saw my doctor.

The good thing about my meany-pants doctor is that she's a well-connected meany-pants doctor. Within a week of seeing her she got me in to see a neurologist.

So that was pretty much the longest introduction to this, the shortest story:
I had the appointment with the neurologist. Not just any neurologist, mind you. A prominent neurologist who runs impressive neurology programs at the university and who has a fancy office in a state-of-the-art medical building. So I go to the exam thinking it will be a quick little head exam (side note: for some reason I thought neurology was about the head not the nervous system) except that when I show up, the neurologist tells me to put on a hospital gown. This would not have been an issue, had I been wearing underpants instead of a tiny little lacy thong (what? I hadn't done laundry in a while.) So I put on the hospital gown and we start the exam and things are going fine. Until I have to walk in a straight line away from the neurologist and do this balancing thing and my gown flaps open and I show my bare ass to the fancy neurologist.

So basically I'm all about showing my bum now. It's kind of my thing.