The First Year

Today marks the first anniversary of Doomsday’s death. An anniversary that I actually never thought would come. I figured she would live until I died and then we would enter the ether together. Like a wizard and their Patronus.

Instead she was handed to me by a heartbroken vet into my openly weeping embrace. I cry just thinking about that feeling. Even though ten minutes later the crying vet came back and was like “How are we doing in here?” and then we cracked a sad joke about never knowing when it’s time to hand back “the body” while we both bawled our faces off. I remember saying “I think 10 minutes is good, otherwise it’s starting to get weird that I’m just sitting here with a dead animal.”

Even though I was thinking it wasn’t THAT weird because we had spent years of ours lives together. What was a few moments of her death to say goodbye forever?

Several things have happened this year that were harder without her, but more odd.

It’s strange to lose a pet. She wasn’t a person, a living breathing human that I could hold conversations with, she never gave me advice, or teased me for being silly, or even laughed with me. But she held such a huge part of my heart and soul that it felt weird to not have her around anymore.

Things you would never think about were really hard without her.

Christmas, mainly. I’m usually the first person up on Christmas just because now I’m the first of three early risers awake in my house on a regular basis and I’m not one for sleeping in unless I’m sick or had a hard week. So when I wake up Christmas morning she was the first creature I would celebrate it with. I would take pictures and let her open her new present of a toy. (She was more concerned about the wrapping paper because she loved to chew, so I made sure to always wrap stuff.)

Filling the corner she lived in was hard. I thought (when she was alive) that decorating the room would be a good thing to move forward, something positive, I would have room for other things and a new space to organize and decorate. I put my writing desk there, it felt weird to sit there and still be able to see the marks that were left on the floor from her cage. I moved a bookshelf there, it hurt to put something there that I’m always looking at.

It felt rude to replace her. That was HER space.

Finally I decided that I would put a chair where I could read and sew. A productive corner where her little ghost could come and chew my patterns and perch on the top of the chair. (Something she liked to do when she was alive.) It still felt weird, but it was a positive weird.

The worst was moving her cage out. I had to empty that out, throw away her litter and anything that wouldn’t be helpful to a future pets life. I moved her cage into the garage so I wouldn’t have to look at it empty. For that first week I would go out into the garage and click her water bottle because I couldn’t sleep without that noise. Or I would try to imagine it as I fell asleep. Sometimes I would even think I really heard it. And then I would remember, and the wound was open once again.

Coming home at the end of the day was bizarre. I always kept my light on, especially in the winter months, so that she would have the light in the room and not always be in the dark. So when I would walk up to the house it was a harsh reminder because my brain would immediately think “Who the hell turned that off? She needs that on.” and I would get so mad. Then my heart would plummet with the realization that the light doesn’t need to be on because she’s no longer there.

My nightly schedule is thrown off. I used to do “lights out” between 8 and 9, which was essentially turning off my laptop and whatever I was watching so that I could read and she could come out and hop around the room for an hour and a half before bed. Now I have no schedule. I don’t even sleep on time anymore. I used to get 8 hours of sleep and now I’m lucky if it’s 6.

My insomniac friends/parent friends want to punch me when I say that.

Her birthday was hard too. I used to go out and get her a new toy in February and she would immediately destroy it. I just loved our little celebrations together of life and love because she was the only creature who was fully mine and I was fully hers and while that’s a little Stockholm syndrome-y, it was a beautiful and ridiculous love.

One of the hardest things is that now I have no idea what to do for my Christmas card this year. Which sounds stupid, but that was one of our traditions in the fall. I would figure out something silly or cute and get ready early for Christmas. I even knit her a little scarf one year for our picture. And last years was so sad to me that I made my piano teacher take it down from his cork board after a few months of staring at my “smiling” face. I knew that I had actually been bawling my face off because I knew this was the last of our pictures like that. I didn’t want to look at my sad face or her tired face anymore. (Thankfully, he complied, and now he has a sarcastically made birthday card from me in its place. Which I appreciate more and helps me not completely lose focus. Or cry.)

I miss her all the time.

Today I feel haunted by her ghost. And not just the ghost of her memory, like legitimately her ghost. Strange things have been happening all day that don’t normally go on.

I know that time heals all wounds, and while this wound doesn’t feel as raw and broken and heart wrenching as it was on this day a year ago, I still hurt from missing her.

And all because I fell in love with a bunny in 2009.

How absurd.

The Short Stack.

Good morning everyone!

I’m clearing house of the tiny reviews. So here’s four to take a gander at.

Summer of My Amazing Luck—Miriam Toews

Literally only picked this up because I knew it was set in the summer. (Book challenge #14-A Book Set in the Summer [26BooksWithBringingUpBurns 2015.])

What a treat it was though! I love this writer, she’s really in tune with empathy over sympathy. It’s very interesting to read her books because they are about real humans and their struggles.

All about people living on welfare and their troubles, stories, and how they rise or fall.

Definitely interesting to pick up. In this you follow Lucy through how she got to the Have-A-Life welfare housing, how she makes friends, and then ends up on a road trip with her friend Lish to find a fire eater that knocked her up awhile ago.

Very cool take, I can’t gush enough about this writer, but I’ll stop for your sake.

Truly great.


I Feel Bad About My Neck (And Other thoughts on being a woman)—Nora Efron

Okay. This also might seem like an odd choice for me to read but hear me out:

I was reading a lot of female authors and was like ‘Hey. This lady writes sweet movies and books and maybe she has some perspective as well on being a woman that would interest me like the last five!”

Well unless you are over 50, don’t bother with this.

I found it quite boring and useless. Which sounds awful since I do like her movies, but I didn’t gain anything from this or learn anything besides ‘I never want to get old’.

*Audience booing*

To be completely fair to her: I will read her other books in the future, I just happened to pick a dud for my age group. Her writing was good, I just didn’t connect to what she was going through and didn’t much care for her stories.



(#16 A Book You Learned About Because of this Challenge….this might be a stretch I think, I was just trying to fill in holes. But I did learn about this because of the other books I was looking through for this challenge, so that has to count.)

The Pilot’s Wife—Anita Shreve

Someone suggested this to me when I lived in Vancouver and it’s been sitting around on my shelves ever since.

That’s how backed up my reading list is. I’m hitting living at home for two years already.

Jesus Christ I need to get my shit together.


This book is about a woman (obviously) who’s husband was a pilot.

Shocker. Haha.

Her husbands plane goes down and she has to deal with all that comes with it. Including their teenage daughter and her grief.

I really loved this book actually, it was beautifully written, not overwhelming with emotions and drama, and enough mystery to hold my attention.

Thank you to the random lady in Vancouver who suggested that I read Anita Shreve’s books. I’m excited to read more of her stuff in the future.

(#18 A book with a blue cover.)


Spending the Holidays with People I Want to Punch in the Throat: Yuletide Yahoos, Ho-Ho-Humblebraggers, and Other Seasonal Scourges—Jen Mann

This book jumped the line because I was in the mood for a holiday laugh. (I read this around Christmas) My cousins family gave this to me. (I’m their nanny and I get all the good stuff from them. Including baby snuggles!)

It was hysterical. And accurate as all hell.

Start to finish had me laughing. And nodding like ‘I feel ya girl!”.

Definitely worth it for a present to someone with a sense of humour around the holidays. Or for a treat for yourself because it was awesome.

Short and sweet and to the point. Just like this review.


Bunnicula—Deborah and James Howe

Another present from a family member, my Auntie Jo (or as she calls herself Aunt Torage. Best word play of life.) I was presented with this for my birthday because I love bunnies, I love horror, and I love ridiculous novels written for children.

This was a good and spoooOOOoooky read.

Okay, it was all right. It IS for kids after all. But it was pretty cute and funny and I’m sure some kid somewhere is having nightmares about this rabbit.


Happy Monday everyone! Constant vigilance!



Happy Holidays!

Hello Puny Humans:

This will be our last post in 2015. Or not. I haven’t completely decided haha. But it WILL be our last post before Christmas. And I have something to say:

Be nice.

Bet you thought I was going to say something sassy. Nope. Plain and simple, from me to you this holiday season: Be nice.

Your parents driving you nuts and you are getting anxious? Be nice to them. They loved you even when you shit up the back of your diaper.

Family members making you want to drink until your liver cries for help?

Be nice. To your liver. If your family members are making you feel like shit because of who you are, what you do, or how you live your life? Be so Goddamn nice to them that they feel guilty. Hey, sometimes you can out-nice them with a super sweet backwards manipulative way of saying “You’re an asshole.” with a really good zinger that actually sounds like you are saying something sweet. I’ve learned that as long as your voice sounds perky you can say anything. (Retail was super fun with a “Go fuck yourself!” in the happiest tone people just waved back.)

Look, there is nothing anyone can do to you as long as you are nice to them. All their meanness or even just rude questions at the dinner table can all be pushed aside as long as YOU choose to be a decent human being.

So be nice even if it physically hurts because it’ll be over soon. And you can go back to your life where you basically ignore everyone and can relax by yourself. (Or so I’m telling myself.)

And if you can’t do that? Then at least go down in a blaze of glory so no one messes with you for years. Kudos to you for sticking up for yourself!

Just know, that I think you are great and cool and funny and that the way you are living your life is super awesome as long as you are happy! Which is what all humans should strive for.

Happy ___________ to you and your loved ones! (Fill in space with whatever you celebrate! You could just be celebrating that the new Star Wars came out or that Jennifer Lawrence is awesome. Happy Jennifer Lawrence Day everyone!)

Constant vigilance! Keep moving forward!


Hallo Everabody!

It’s been awhile, but here’s what’s new on the site:

(Please note, we’re not done making changes, but I missed writing to you so I came back early.)

Obviously the look of the site is new(ish), my friend and collaborator is making us a fresh design for the future but for now we’ll stick with something more colourful!

Now, the big news is that all the pages up at the top where it tells you which genres to look in? And how they have lists of books that I’ve read and/or loved? Now you can click on them to read the past post! Whoohoo! Thank God for Irene, she’s making all sorts of fun changes to the site and hopefully I won’t have to think too hard about much anymore! Haha

Having a minion is great. I feel like Gru. (Hence the accented ‘hello’.)

Story time? Since we haven’t talked in awhile here are the highlights from the last few weeks:

1)Christmas was great, it was nerd Heaven. David Duchovny got a girlfriend. And I have Doctor Who paraphernalia coming out the yin yang.

2)New Years was wonderfully dipped in alcohol and friendship. And poutine. Which is my only real true friend. It was my first New Years since I was a kid that I really participated in. Last year I played Cards Against Humanity with my family and watched my sister cry over her break up. It was just leaking out randomly, it was scary. Very Dr. Jekyll and Mr Hyde. I also had my first New Years kiss, which was also alcohol dipped and a peck on the cheek that wasn’t from my dad, although there were whiskers involved. But sweet none the less.

3)I woke up on New Years day with barf down my front and still in my party dress.

4)Fireball is my enemy and I realized yesterday an anagram for Alli Barf. Well, almost, but you get the idea. We’re not friends anymore. Again.

5)I finished writing my own book at 8 pm on New Years Eve! It’s ready to go and be published already after 10 years of an off/on again love affair that usually ends up with me wanting to set it on fire.

6)I finished reading Trainspotting!!!! WAAHOOOOOOOOOOOOO. I’m not sure what to think of it.

7)I was told that I’m pretty, nice, and have beautiful eyes from a Mexican man that comes into my work and told that he has a son around my age and he’ll bring him back to Vancouver so we can get married. He made me swear that in the next month I won’t marry someone else.

Yeah. Because that’s really going to happen. Unless Rupert shows up. Or Norman Reedus. Or The Rock.

8)Someone donated a mannequin head and told me her name was Daphne.

9)I found a box that contained a baggie of packets of sugar. And condoms. I don’t even want to know where that was going.

10)A German man told me he loves me in Tagalog. (Which is what his Filipino girlfriend speaks. He’s 83.) His girlfriend also slipped me packages of M and Ms like it was a drug deal.

11)I was walking home and walked past a girl wearing an obviously fake moustache like it was nothing. I love her.

12)I was cleaning the store for opening and I heard a clock ticking near my head. Which seemed reasonable because there WAS one by my head…and then I really looked at it and the hands weren’t moving and there were no batteries in it. I’m Captain Hook.

13)I got into a fight with another mirror. This makes the third mirror I’ve broken/killed/lost a fight with. The first when I was playing with a baby and showing him his face and it broke in my hand. The second I kept knocking over and didn’t fully break, but cut my leg on. And now the third which my sister keeps on the counter for plucking her eyebrows and I knocked it over when I got off toilet. Seriously. When you start saying ‘Typical’ when you break a mirror, it’s time to call it quits on being near them.

Okay, I think that’s all the weird and wonderful things. Now I’m going to go bra shopping because Doomsdays chewed all the straps to most of my bras like a goddamn weirdo.

Happy New Year!