Monday, 24 April 2017

When Lucy met Megan

Megan is our 14 year old daughter. I have referred to her in previous posts as 'M'. As you will know we told her about Lucy just under a year ago and her reaction was brilliant. She can't wait to met some of our close friends, Jenny & Ethan and Paulette.

She has been very non plussed about it all and doesn't think that it is a big deal. She has seen many pictures of Lucy all made up and out and about and is on our Facebook accounts so has access to all our activities and pics - some where we are both a little worse for wear! At home she doesn't bat an eyelid when Lucy wanders round in her fluffy slippers or is wearing a dress for the evening and all Lucy's new clothes purchases are shown to both the girls for their opinion. She sees the washing on the line, the array of beauty products strewn around our bedroom and Lucy who used to be totally shy about being seen coming out the bathroom no longer hides away and everyone is just so comfortable.

Despite all this, Megan had never seen Lucy properly dressed up, with make up looking like she does in the many pictures. So we decided we were having a girls night in, me, Lucy, Megan and my other daughter B. We bought all sorts of nibbles and a couple bottles of prosecco and chose to watch the film Bridget Jones Baby.

Lucy went upstairs and got ready starting with a bath. B (who has been out with us in the past) finished off Lucy's make up and included a little tutorial on applying eye shadow too. Lucy takes an age to get ready but eventually she was finished. She hid in our bedroom and actually turned the light off as she was nervous. Megan came along and turned the light on and when she saw Lucy her face just lit up and she squealed and gave Lucy the biggest hug. It was just a totally amazing moment.

We all went downstairs for the food and the film. Lots of pictures were taken of both the girls and Lucy and Megan spent all night by Lucy's side (it is very rare to get Megan even out of her bedroom for dinner these days). The whole night just whizzed by. Lucy relaxed and Megan was just brilliant.

So as you will expect, we are planning another girls night in as we all had just such a brilliant time.

Thursday, 13 April 2017

Another marathon

Well done Lucy!!! On Sunday she ran the Brighton Marathon and raised lots of money for Great Ormond Street Hospital. She suffered quite a bit as both her achilles were hurting before she even started and nearly gave up after half a mile when she was running uphill around Preston Park however she is not one to give up and she persevered and made it. I am so proud of her and her achievement especially as I know she hates running.

I did post some pictures of her during the race on Facebook (as him sadly) and quite a few people commented on the length of her hair. It is getting quite long now and the baby fine hair that has replaced the thinning patch is getting long enough that the patch is disappearing - proof that Finasteride works. Even when she is dressed as 'him' I am loving the longer hair. It is still partially at the side sticking out stage but I think she looks really cute (and younger too!) and it does change her face although that could be the hormones too as her face shape does appear to be softening. I thought it was just me that could notice but Emma (our nail lady) commented on it too. She also mentioned that in one of the marathon pictures you could see her breast changes through the t-shirt even though she was wearing a tight sports bra and funnily enough I thought the same. I think we could see it as we knew the situation and I don't think anyone who doesn't know would notice. The hormones are definitely having the right affects as it seems to me every day her boobs are getting bigger and the shape is changing for the better and her body shape is changing as she is getting a waist. All good signs!

In other news.....
Lucy has has a call up for her to have a cervical smear test! That did make us both chuckle but at least it means that all her medical records have had the gender marker changed as well as her name. Just a shame that B our 21 year old daughter has got another 4 years before she gets called for hers!

Lucy went for a routine blood test this week. As she was in 'male mode*' when she went she took our daughter M with her for support. There was some confusion from the nurse who firstly thought she was taking blood from M but when Lucy said they were here for her the nurse then said that she had the wrong persons blood test request slip. Lucy told her she hadn't however the nurse was sure it was wrong and got up to go out the room when Lucy told her to please sit down and that it was the right slip and she was the right person and to have a look at what the blood test was for. The nurse slowly realised the situation and Lucy explained that she was 'work in progress'. The bloods were taken ok and now we just have to wait for the results to send off to Dr Webberley.
*male mode - this is very misleading as she is looking more and more feminine by the day. A more accurate description may be she is looking more and more non-binary when casually dressed in male type clothing because when she is wearing female gender specific clothing she looks more girlie because the clothes are matching her better. I know what I mean even if I have confused the hell out of you all!

Lucy is now changing her passport details and sent an email to her GP. Unfortunately it turns out he is off on holiday at the moment along with the other GP in the practice who is aware of Lucy's situation so she will have to wait a little bit longer to see if they will write the necessary letter. We don't expect this to be an issue but you never know.

She is also an admin assistant for the Sparkle weekend event in July. She is not a Trustee but seeing the work she is doing behind the scenes (and what everyone else is doing) makes you realise how much work goes into this event. It is certainly shaping up to be a fantastic weekend but I'm now not sure how much of it we will spending enjoying as it looks like we both may be helping out. Watch this space!

Saturday, 25 March 2017

Trans widow - Q & A

If you follow my blog then you will probably know about Lucy and I and the journey we are on. I know that putting a blog into the public domain means it is available to one and all. I have seen other bloggers suffer real transphobic abuse from people who comment (some from within the trans community) and I suppose that in the 18 months I have been blogging I have been lucky..... well until the day after my last blog post was featured on T-Central.

A CIS woman calling herself a trans widow decided to comment on my blog and it was totally obvious from her comments that she had only read the recent post and had not read any of my previous posts and really knew nothing about Lucy and our situation. Everyone has a different journey and a different outcome and it is very sad that 'Penelope' has not moved on with her life and felt it appropriate to post the vitriolic comments on my blog. Life goes on and just because her relationship failed it doesn't mean they all do or that ours will.

I did make a couple of comments back to her and even Lucy who is usually very quiet decided to comment but I was not prepared to rise to the bait of a bitter woman who thinks everyone's experience must be the same as hers. I don't have to answer to anyone let alone a bitter stranger but thought I would answer her questions here:

Hasn't anyone told you about autogynephilia?
What on earth is that? I hate people who use words that are not commonly used. I had to google it "Autogynephilia is the "mental illness" described by the theory that transgender women who aren't exclusively attracted to men actually have a sexual fetish for viewing themselves as female. This covers lesbian, bisexual, and pansexual trans women. So my answer is no, I have not heard about it but fail to see the relevance to Lucy and our situation. This seems like a completely unproven theory and why does this relate to only to women and not gay or bisexual men too?

Are you seriously prepared to do this to your family and yourself for the sake of a narcissistic fetishist who is having a love affair with himself
Who is a narcissistic fetishist? What makes you believe this? Certainly not Lucy? And SHE doe not have a love affair with herself... far from it actually. Get your pronouns right!

What about your life and your own needs?
My life and my needs are perfectly fine thank you. Should you read my blog in it's entirety then you would know that my life and needs are sorted and not compromised.

What about your own identity and sexuality or that of your children?
My sexual identity is also fine thank you very much and I don't have to explain or justify this to anyone else especially someone this bitter and who I don't know.  I am very comfortable with it. Our children are fine too - thank you for asking.

Do you honestly think this is psychologically harmless to a child of any sex to watch their father being enabled by you to bereave and rob them of a parent figure?
Yes I do actually in the right circumstances and handled in a careful way. We are an extremely close and loving family. Lets face it, kids are very resilient.

Their only choice to go along with the lies and untruths of their own biology and origins?
What on earth is this all about? I presume you are talking about the kids. Their own biology and origins are not affected and don't ever change. When we talk about kids, they range in age from 31 to 14 so many are not children and most are adults.

Are you really going to demand other people suspend their disbelief and cater EVERMORE to this persons demands?
Who is demanding anything? Certainly not Lucy or I. Just because YOUR partner was demanding it doesn't mean that MY Lucy or myself are the same. People are different and have different personalities or hadn't you noticed? Don't get me wrong, we have both met trans people who put their welfare over and above everyone else but not Lucy.... the opposite in fact!

Do you know what the future holds?
No. Do you? Does anyone know what the future holds? It is the future and all to play for and the path can change on the spin of a coin. A ridiculous question as I am not a clairvoyant (even though I played a clairvoyant at the murder mystery dinner party so I can see the misunderstanding.... well actually not as you didn't read any other of my posts so you wouldn't have known!).

How do you imagine he might repay your love and devotion?
Who is this 'he' you speak of? Just because your love and devotion was betrayed it does not mean it is the same for everyone. I don't expect anyone to repay anything.... for me that is not what a relationship is about and this relates to any relationship whether it be my partner, family or friends. My actions are not taken with any ulterior motive. All you need to know is that we are both totally in love and devoted to each other.

How far is Lucy planning to go with this transition? All the way, part of the way?
If you had bothered to read any of my other posts you would know that Lucy is going for full transition with my full support. Not sure what your point is and the relevance?

How does that impact your identity?
It doesn't and why would it?

Are you not afraid Lucy might fully transition and start to prefer other men or worse, lie to you? it happens a lot.
No, this does not worry me. She has never lied to me and was very honest from very early in our relationship. We are open and honest and talk all the time and this is why is works for us. Lies may happen a lot (according to you) however it does not apply to us and I also know of many relationships where there are no lies. Lies can happen whether or not your partner is trans..... it is not exclusive to those relationships.

What care toward you has he shown so far now you have encouraged his transition?
SHE shows me lots of care in many, many ways and we have a very loving relationship. Had you bothered to read any of my other posts you would know this.

Is he happier or has he become more anxious and more difficult? could guilt be playing a part? why is that do you think? 
SHE is much happier, I am much happier and our family unit who live at home are very happy..... where does guilt come to play in this question?

Do you have to walk on eggshells round lucy?
Ha ha no of course not and never have! Why would you think this? Ah yes, you are trying to transfer your negative experience to our relationship. Have you gathered yet that there is no similarity?? (p.s. Lucy is spelt with a capital L).

Do you always have to do what Lucy wants or do you sometimes get it your way too?
Now you are getting to know me a little better what do you think? What are you referring to in what context? We are in a relationship and there is give and take on both sides..... that's what a relationship is about!

Could you live like this forever where 'its all about my lucy'?
Don't take the name of my blog literally and fit it to your negativity. It is MY title that I chose for my blog. It is a blog about Lucy's transition and our life together and if you read the posts they are not all about Lucy - there is a lot about me and other things. Our life is not 'all about Lucy'. I could quite and easily have named it 'It's all about Lucy and Avril'. Get real!

You are erased as a human to be perceived as handmaiden to patriarchal, binary notions of gender?
OMG.... what is this all about? I had to laugh when I read this. What on earth are you getting at? I'm no handmaiden to anything however you are a handmaiden to bitterness and anger (and it is time for you to move on with your life as it seems to be eating you away).

Have you not seen the private forums, chats and porn sites? dont they set your alarm bells ringing just a little bit?   
I'm thinking you obviously had a bad time with your partner. There are no alarm bells as there is nothing to worry about. Read previous comments about us being open and honest and talk all the time. There are no hidden secrets.

Was he always a cross dresser?
SHE has never been a CD. She has always been trans.

Was he a GNC child and adult?
No SHE was not GNC ever. She wore her mask well though. The details are none of your business however she has been trans since her earliest memories.

Myself and other 'trans widows' know that this does not come out of the blue. it takes a lot of lies and betrayals, a lot of gaslighting and violation and subtle forms of abuse for a man to get this far with transition while still 'happily' married and with family still in thrall to his narcissistic selfishness.
Hmmm.... again you are transferring YOUR negative experience and it doesn't fit our relationship. Our situation is not 'out of the blue'. I knew about Lucy within a couple of months into our relationship and I am externally grateful. I had the get out clause but wasn't interested in it. There have been no lies, betrayals or anything else you mention in OUR relationship. I have always known unlike yourself. Lucy was selfless and risked everything in telling me so early but it has meant that our whole relationship has been based on truths and not lies and deceit. I find it very sad that you have a labelled yourselves in such a negative way by using the terminology 'trans widow'. I am divorced from my first husband but never considered myself a 'marriage widow'.

I cant help but notice that Lucy came out at the same time a close female family members was going through puberty and adolescence.
What makes you come to this conclusion? Lucy 'came out' to me long before our daughter was conceived and when my oldest daughter was 4, 16 years ago. No other female family members were going through puberty at the time however one of my sons was.... does that count? Her honesty to me was not based on family members as she didn't know them that well at the time. It was based wholly on OUR relationship (and I had been through puberty many, many years before!). She knew our relationship was serious and cared enough to tell me at the risk of losing me.

This is incredibly common among Agp males who misrepresent themselves as heteronormative and repeatedly enter 'beard' marriages due to their internalised homophobia and need to be seen as normal masculine males
Hmmm.... no idea what a 'beard' marriage is so well done google yet again....
Beard is a slang term describing a person who is used, knowingly or unknowingly, as a date, romantic partner (boyfriend or girlfriend), or spouse either to conceal infidelity or to conceal one's sexual orientation. The American slang term originally referred to anyone who acted on behalf of another, in any transaction, to conceal a person's true identity
Well, yet again if you had read my blog there was nothing 'beard' about our relationship or marriage (or even about Lucy as she has never had facial hair)! In fact we got married 9 years after meeting and 9 years after me knowing about Lucy so I am afraid yet again your assumption is very, very wrong. And just for the record, neither Lucy or any of our family are homophobic.

Its not a coincidence that so very many trans fathers come out during a daughters puberty as female puberty is heavily fetishised by such men - go see for yourself its all online if you know what to look for.
Well I am sure by now you realise that this does not apply to Lucy. I also really dislike your use of 'fetish'. You really and truly have no understanding of the make up of a trans person.

Well trans widow Penelope you will see I have taken the time out to reply to your biased comments. Had you bothered to read back on any of the very many posts I have written you would have seen that your assumptions about mine and Lucy's relationship and  our situation is completely different to your experience and I am certainly not the na├»ve and uninformed person that you believe me to be. It is sad that you are so bitter that you felt the need to comment and make statements based on your own relationship. Surely your internet research would tell you that no two trans relationships are the same and in some cases the differences are subtle and in some the differences are worlds apart. I am a member of plenty of forums and partner support groups and admin on a couple so see things in a very rounded context and am privy to lots of partners experiences and thoughts. I hear about the damage that is done to relationships but also hear of the success stories where couples have come through on the other side, with and without transition; ftm as well as mtf.

I know I am one of the lucky ones where I was told very early on in our relationship and I am eternally grateful to Lucy for this. Possibly if I had found out several years after being together and after having a family by which time everything has been built on lies I may have felt differently. To have the rug pulled out from under your feet and to find out the relationship you had invested in and built upon was based on a pack of lies must have been heart breaking and I get that. I do understand your pain but it is YOUR pain not mine.

I have known for 16 years so you can see this is not a new situation for me. In that time we have continued to be open and honest with each other and share so much. We go out and have fun together and take time for each other. We are closer than ever (which we never thought possible as we were always very close) and talk all the time. Lucy is my soulmate.

Can I advise that next time before you comment take the time to know the person you are commenting on. It is time for you to let go of your past and look forward to the future. The future is not written and anything is possible (see my answer to your question to me about the future). I hope you eventually find the peace you need.


Sunday, 19 March 2017

Wobble and more!!

This week Lucy had another wobble and had doubts if she is doing the right thing. These seem to come in cycles. This was caused by a post-op friend of ours saying how difficult and lonely life was for her. This started Lucy off.... The world these days is far more accepting than it used to be and together we can face anything. We have already faced so much and come through the other side stronger. Lots of people who post about unhappiness generally seem to be those without partners or family supporting them and yes, it must be bloody hard. I keep reminding Lucy that I am here for her, FOREVER. We also have friends already that are accepting as well as a whole load of really good community friends. This is our journey and not just hers. We can't go back now as I really believe it would kill both of us and I hate living in this twilight world full of secrets and not being able be truly be who we both are. The road ahead will be full of uncertainty and no doubt will be difficult at times but we are a team and will get through this together. Luckily due to the partner groups I am on I hear lots of stories about couples who have come out the other side and are still happy and not just the negative stories. We will be one of those happy couples and I am 100% certain she is doing the right thing. Why should she live the rest of her life as a complete compromise? She could have almost as many years as she has already lived living in the right body and living the right life. F**k everyone else!

Last week we had Pandora gate..... Lucy had wanted a Pandora bracelet for some time and every time she mentioned it I told her to wait until her birthday in September as I wanted to buy it. Recently my daughter got one for her 21st and one of my sons girlfriends got one for her 30th. Lucy is very impatient and just went out and bought one.... not just the bracelet but safety chain and some charms. She was so pleased with herself and I was so peed off. She thought I would be happy buying charms for the bracelet but I'm not. I wanted to buy her the bracelet itself. It was the only thing I knew she really wanted that I could have given that would have been a 'keeper' present that anyone could add charms to. Generally if she wants something she will buy it. She bought different 'wedding' and 'engagement' rings for when we go out. Although they were cheap, they are genuine jewellery and not costume jewellery. I had no input and she just came back with them hence the importance to me of the Pandora bracelet. We ended up having a massive row about it however she does now appreciate the significance. She said I could pay her for the bracelet but I didn't want to as that is not me going and choosing and buying it for her. She then volunteered to take it back but there was no point. It was already bought. I did say in anger that I would never buy any charms for her but no doubt I will. It still won't have the same significance to me as I won't be adding to something I chose and bought..... Now I have no idea of any sort of present to buy her!

This week I also lost the diamond out of my wedding/engagement ring. It was 2 rings that slotted together however I had them welded together as they kept twiddling round. As you can imagine I am gutted however I would be more gutted if I had lost the ring. We searched everywhere but couldn't find the diamond. Luckily it is insured, we have to pay a £100 excess, so it is now in the jewellers waiting for a quote along with a copy of the valuation which gives exact detail of the diamond.

While I was in the jewellery shop I spoke to them about 'his' wedding ring as that was also on the same valuation sheet. As you may recall, we are planning on getting 'married' again once all the surgery is done and want 'his' ring made into 2 separate rings, one for Lucy and one for me. If we take the same ring and just cut it in half (it is a big ring) then it was be approx. £200 per ring and if we have it melted down and 2 completely new rings then will be a bit more. At least we now have a rough idea of the cost.

In the middle of Pandora gate (which happened on a day we were planning on going to Pinks) Lucy got a call from the GIC cancelling her 2nd appointment in September. They didn't say why but she had to ring back. As you can imagine we were gutted however they offered her a replacement appointment in November or July. Well she jumped at the July appointment so it turns out to be beneficial as it is now sooner. We have booked a hotel nearby but not the same one as last time.

Last Friday we went to Pinks. It was a BNO however there were not as many as the regulars there as usual however we did get to see one girl we hadn't seen for ages (in fact we were talking about her in the car on the drive there and about how long it had been since we last saw her) and a lovely friend who we have not seen for at least 6 months since she had her op. As usual we ended up making some new friends too. When we posted some of the pics on Facebook (as usual) one of our friends commented on how Lucy's face was changing due to the hormones. We hadn't noticed, but this was someone who hasn't seen her or any pics for a while so it was reassuring that there are other changes other than the obvious ones. Her hair is also getting longer but still at the annoying in between stage. Quite a few people are commenting on it now and apart from a drunken neighbour who just wouldn't stop going on about it and how 'he' should cut it, the general consensus is that it makes 'him' look younger. 

Today Lucy ran the Hampton Court Palace half marathon. It was an early start for a Sunday and she had been out in the taxi last night so only had a few hours sleep. She hadn't trained and was relying on the football refereeing she does. Cardio was not an issue but she really felt it in her legs. I was able to get to a couple of points along the route to cheer her along and she finished in less than 3 hours. The medal is lovely and I'm am so proud of her. She is running the Brighton marathon in 3 weeks time but she will have to do some more training for that! I will be there supporting her all the way.

Thursday, 9 March 2017

My tattoo and other stuff

At last!!! I have had my tattoo done.

I love it so much. The only downside is that I can't really see it that well but I know everyone else can  which is good. I wear a lot of vest tops in the summer and it sits right inside the straps perfectly. A thigh tattoo is next for me. The lady tattooist is designing something but I also have an artist friend who lives in Thailand and he has volunteered to draw something too. Hopefully I will have some choice.

Lucy has also had her thigh tattoo done. I think it is absolutely beautiful and she is chuffed to bits with it!

She is now planning extending the peony pattern on her arm to her shoulder and wants one on her foot. I'm not keen on her having too many more as I think that will be enough but it is up to her.

This week we knew for sure that the GP had properly changed Lucy's record..... she got a letter from the local health authority inviting her in for a cervical smear test! We did have a little smile.

She is still buying lots of make up and all lovely expensive stuff. Seems her and my daughter have similar tastes. She does spend quite a bit but needs to learn more how to apply it herself. The last couple of times I have ended up having to applying her eyeshadow and sort out her eyebrows for her. It is not she can't do it, I just think she is taking the easy option because I'm not there when she could do it herself. She also needs to practice more at home and take the opportunity of both our daughters being around to advise which she can do more now that she has her new job.

Lucy is still growing her hair but it is slow progress which I knows she finds frustrating.  It is at a real in between stage which is always awkward. It is quite long but still going out more than down. For work she is wearing a baseball cap to try to hide it a bit. Considering she is not full time at the moment I am surprised that no one has commented on her hair as 'he' has never had hair this long in the 16 years I have known her. Hopefully the longer it gets the extra weight will start to pull it down more. I think she is expecting her natural hair to look like some of the wigs she has but I doubt it every will, though when it is long enough she can consider having extensions. She also has hair growing in her small patch that was thinning which means the Finasteride must be working. At the moment it is fine baby-like hair but hopefully in time it will thicken up.

Facially I don't think there have been any noticeable changes but I swear her bum is getting bigger. She says that she doesn't sweat as much these days not that she was a very sweaty person anyway. All good signs that the patches are working.

Little steps......

Monday, 27 February 2017

Pinks and a murder mystery

Well this weekend was amazing and full of interesting things.

We had arranged to go and see a lovely couple we met (through one of the partner support groups I belong to and who we met face to face at Sparkle last year), Jenny and Ethan. They live in Cheshire which is about 200 miles away from us and as we would have to drive up past Pinks we thought that we would take advantage and go to Pinks on Friday evening and then continue the journey to theirs on the Saturday as arranged.

It wasn’t a BNO night and the cheapest hotel we could get was the Campanile opposite which we have not stayed in for some time after we discovered the Hilton Double Tree and 2 nice Premier Inn hotels nearby. We had forgotten how skanky and small this hotel was. It does take advantage of the fact it is dead opposite Pinks and they do increase the room price when BNO is on. The pillows were flat and the duvet was like a sheet as it had no stuffing and the cleanliness of the bathroom could definitely be questioned but I suppose it was only a place to get ready and sleep. We didn’t rush getting over to Pinks as knew we shouldn’t drink too much and also we did need to leave earlier than normal as we didn’t want to be too tired for Saturday night at Jenny and Ethan’s and the murder mystery party they had planned (our first time).

We got to Pinks at about 12am and it wasn’t very busy. An hour or so later that all changed. We had a great night dancing away and as usual ended up making new friends as we always do. Later when Lucy went to leave I was busy chatting to a lovely couple so she went without me and I came back 5 mins later. I suppose that is the benefit of the hotel being over the road and not having to get a taxi.

Saturday we made the drive to Cheshire which was a smooth run and not much traffic. Marred slightly by the fact that we couldn’t get hold of our daughter Megan who was at home alone to check she was ok and after 3 hours of ringing her and getting our neighbour to knock 4 times we ended up having to get one of my sons to drive 20 mins round to our house to check she was ok. Of course she was fine and had been sleeping in taking advantage of a later night and a longer lay in with us both away. Once we had spoken to her we could relax and enjoy the rest of the weekend and set some additional rules about her phone not being on silent.

When we arrived we popped in to see Jenny and Ethan and stayed for a cuppa before we headed off to the local B&B we were booked into. After the previous night we were a little nervous but we didn’t need to be. The room was lovely and quirky as was the fab pub it was part of. The pillows were bouncy and so huge we had to take one set off the bed and the duvet was thick and snuggly. This was a great choice. The bathroom was lovely too, no bath only a shower which was fine. Jenny was relieved as she had told us about it but didn’t actually know what it was like. It was very cosy.

While we were getting ready I was looking at Lucy and thought that it looked like there had been a growth spurt in a certain area and funnily enough about 10 mins later Lucy mentioned it too. Now that was a bit of good news. Unfortunately though, she is still putting on weight as she is snacking because of the hormones and is not being very disciplined.... if I say anything she gets all stressy but it is hard as I do want her to lose the weight she is putting on and she is not helping herself :(

We got changed into our characters, I was Claire Voyant (a psychic) and Lucy was lady Shippe (the bereaved widow) and then made our way back to Jenny and Ethan's house. We didn’t know what to expect and there was another couple coming over too that we had not met before. They turned out to be totally lovely and were the cook and the gamekeeper and Jenny and Ethan were the major and the vicar (rather appropriate for Ethan who is studying to be a vicar). The evening was great with acting and speaking as our characters in between the meal courses (a very delicious moussaka and fab cheese and biscuits my favourite) and listening to extra information on a CD. As it turns out lady Shippe and the gamekeeper were the killers…. It was a fantastic evening and we are now making plans to host our own murder mystery party but of course go back for another at Jenny and Ethan’s.

They mentioned that they had just come back from a regular adult only 5 days at Butlins that they do together. They make this trip every February and have already booked next year at Minehead and invited us to come with them. Lucy looked it up and we are now all booked in. How exciting. I have never been to Butlins and I’m sure it will be great fun. Lucy will also be full time by then.

In the morning as we were getting ready and I was putting my earring in over the wash basin. The plug hole had very big holes in it and usually I would have put the plug in but didn’t this time. Shock horror, I dropped one (and these are my favourite and expensive earrings from Turkey) and I heard a ‘plop’ as it went down the hole….. I was gutted and was thinking that there would be no way of retrieving it back. However I looked at the back of the basin and could just about access the U bend pipe as that is where I knew the earring would be. Luckily the pipes were relatively new and unscrewed easily by hand (which made me think someone else had done the same thing) and I was able to dismantle the piping to get my earring back which indeed was sat at the bottom of the U bend. It all screwed back together easily and I was extremely relieved I had my earring back! Always some sort of drama!!

We met up with Jenny and Ethan for a cuppa and then went down the local antique and collectables barn and were amazed at some of the stuff that was there. There was a nice little restaurant there so we had a cream tea which turned out to be warm home made scones and was very delicious. Lucy went to the ladies and was gone so long I though she had fallen in!! A queue had formed outside waiting for her made up of some little old ladies. Turns out she was oblivious and touching up her make up. Not a good idea when there is only one toilet! After we went for another wander around and then went back to theirs to chill for a bit. I hadn’t seen anyone give Lucy any dodgy looks however she said she had seen a couple but nothing outright obvious or rude. This was a big confidence boost for her as she had never done this before.

When we had seen how nice the pub that was attached to the B&B was we offered to take Jenny and Ethan there for an evening dinner which we did. The place is very unusual and quaint and had a great atmosphere. Even the ladies toilet was amazing as it had an anti-room with a large bay window and a piano in! The food was amazing and the staff were really friendly. I commented to Lucy how all the different staff we had seen had been friendly and nice and she said that we had seen so many different staff as they were probably all coming to take a peek at her…… I hadn’t thought of that and wasn’t sure whether this was the case or not but one person did the drinks, another took our order, another checked we had ordered and another served the meals. I suppose that is a lot of staff however at this time the pub was not busy. In any case none pulled any funny faces or was anything other than polite and friendly.

We dropped Jenny and Ethan off and made the journey home. Luckily it was a clear run and we made good time and the journey always allows us to chat. Lucy went through a bit of a wobble about the impact of being full time on those around us despite how great everything had been with strangers over the weekend but yet again I told her the impact on her not doing this would be greater for us both. Todays gossip is tomorrows chip paper and it really does not impact directly the lives of anyone other than hers, mine and Megan's and we are all fine with it. I have absolutely no doubt that going full time is the right thing to do. I have a lovely friend in the US (yes you Beth!) who was worried about telling friends and colleague and she has found to her surprise that people have been very accepting. I’m pretty sure that it will be the same for Lucy.

It had been a great weekend and we cannot wait to spend time with them again. We are planning on going to the Richmond Tea Rooms in Manchester with them for afternoon tea when we go to Sparkle but are also planning going to one of the Mad Hatter Tea Parties later in the year on a Friday, followed by another murder mystery evening on the Saturday at Jenny and Ethan’s. We are also planning our own murder mystery dinner party and Lucy is researching which one to get with the best characters. What with Butlins planned for next February it is nice to have things to look forward to.

Saturday, 18 February 2017

2017 is getting better

I know it has been a little while since I last posted but so much was going on. I lost my job, was registering on lots of job websites with my details, scrolling through lots of jobs, 2 interviews and new job was started unexpectedly the next day after one interview. Started on a Wednesday, was flown to Amsterdam by the company on Thursday with an overnight stay and flew back late Friday afternoon. It is a contract job but looking good already.

Lucy started her new job on Monday the same week. Long story short she was going to be a bus driver but got an offer to be an Environmental Officer (both of which she used to do) but the bus driving would have got in the way of her djing which she does at the weekend. So far so good however she is suffering with the change of hours from working nights to days which has been hard as she has worked nights for 25 years although she is settling into it.

It has been lovely having her at home the same time as me and we have managed to watch some tv programmes snuggled together on the sofa which is just so great. I just love been able to spend more quality time with her.

The increase in her hormone patch dosage has definitely helped and she is certainly more busty now accompanied by tenderness. All positive news. She still needs to lose the weight that she has put on due to giving up smoking and side effects of the hormones but all the junk eating is not helping. If I mention it I get moaned at but I'm only trying to help. Her hair is getting longer but seems to be growing more out than down but this is because it is so curly. I know it is driving her mad and as it is at that in between stage for work she has started wearing a baseball hat which is weird as that is just not something she would wear. The thinning patch she had has hair growing but it is like fine baby hair but hopefully it will thicken out in time. She is lucky that she only has this small patch to worry about. She is not yet suffering with the anticipated mood swings. I don't know if they are to come or if she is just lucky. Only time will tell.

Plans are still on for her to go full time this year. We have not spoken about it much recently but she still has her sons to tell before we get to that stage. It is going to have to be sooner rather than later though.

I've booked to have my tattoo done at last. 2 weeks today and I'm so excited. It is going to be at the top of my back and is likely to hurt quite a bit.... yikes!!

So after a rocky start 2017 is feeling quite positive......