Friday, July 29, 2011

Whew! What a whirl

Hi y'all!

Sorry I've been gone so long, but things have kinda piled up on me.  I was running on around 2-4 hours a sleep each night during the build up to the three big nights and I think it just caught up to me.  Been under the weather, we are puppy sitting, whom I'm allergic to, and now! have a tooth abscess, sigh....

So, will attempt to do some sort of run down on the week. 

 The cooking was exhausting, but everything came out wonderful!  I ended up only making 2 types of cookies, and we bought a cake, that hadnt been cut by the end of the evening.  On the journey of preparing all of that food, I learned several things:
1. to Never trust food allotments one finds on the web.  I had acres to much food!  An impressively large amount of leftovers actually.  TH took them to work for his co-workers to enjoy.
2.  when making potato salad, never boil the potatoes, but STEAM them!  Not only do the potatoes come out tasting much better, but is ever so much easier.  No large vats of water to lug around, no pouring of boiling water, just fill up the bamboo steamer stick it on the pan of water and steam away, and in a short 14 minutes, your potatoes are perfectly done. They seem to cool quicker and to my mind at least, absorb the flavors better.
3. a food processor makes short work of the slicing and shredding and I was a FOOL for not having one before this.  a total and complete id1ot!

I didnt get a very good picture to share with y'all, sorry about that.  The rest of 'em all have people in them.  But those are SOME of the containers of food.  I had another one of slaw and one more of broccoli salad.

So, the morning of the bridal shower I wake up to realize that I have mucked about so long trying to decide what to wear, that I have nothing to wear!  eep!  I have already decided not to wear a dress.  My sister in law and I were the only two who didnt wear a dress, but it wasn't commented on, at least to our faces.  I rush into the sewing room, and pull out my meager stash of fabric.  Last summer I bought some printed knit material, its soft and lightweight, it would look nice with a pair of white pants.  I look thru all of my patterns...holy ants and cats!  Those would all take forever to make!  Ok, time for a Project Runway Moment, I re-purposed a chinese coat pattern front, and bam!, I had the top done in a little over 2 hours.  The top is very comfortable to wear, cool on our "hot" days.  I've already worn it three times!

I dithered around so long, I never could decide on what top to make so I ended up wearing the skirt I made, a white sweater, and a teal top. I looked ok, not great, way out of the league of most of the people who attended. However, my clothing was so simple and for the most part, comfortable enough for me to ignore it most of the time. Here's a picture of the skirt, which wasnt hemmed when I took the picture.

Without a doubt, this was the best wedding I've ever attended.  Why?  Because the bride and groom GLOWED with happiness throughout the entire ceremony, and into the reception.  The best man, youngest did a great job with his speech.  He brought tears to everyone's eyes with his story.  Bride looked beautiful in her dress, dancing with her dad.  I didnt recognize the song they danced to, it was a country song.  For the song 3rd son and I danced to, was one we fell in love with on a family vacation to Hawaii.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

What a week this will be!

Howdy all!

So this is the run up week to 3rd son's wedding, and what a week this should prove to be.  Yesterday in a moment of mental clarity I decided what i needed was a to-do list broken up into days.  After working on my schedule, and my list of things to buy, my mountain of responsibilities seems even larger.  Silly me, I thought the writing of the list, would reduce my trepidation about the coming week, but nope!  I had to keep coming back to add stuff to my list, sigh....

My skirt is finished, except for hemming.  Next up is the top.  And i still need something to wear for the bridal shower.  The invitation stated to come in a summer dress.  So, I guess I'll have to whip one of those up as well.  I have a half done t-shirt that I didnt like how it fit, and some fabric that after I got it home I didnt like.  Surprisingly the two go well together, and it shouldnt take long to morph the items into a quick dress.  Gah!  I cant believe I have to wear two different dresses, within the space of 3 days!!!

I need to finish up the sewing by Monday at the latest.  That way I can be clear for the big push towards the groom's supper.  Now where I grew up, if there were loads of people traveling for a wedding the rehearsal dinner was changed to a groom's supper and the out of town guests were invited.   What with the bridal party and out of town guests we are looking at close to 50 people.  The groom's family are in charge of the rehearsal dinner.  3rd son and wife to be want a barbeque which is fine fine by me.  But lordy lordy that's a load of food to have to prepare!  If you are wondering why I just dont buy the food ready made, its because silly me is allergic to fake food ingredients.  So all of those ingredients that read like a chemistry experiment is what makes me ill.  I would like to be able to eat more than just a burger and chips, ya know?

Here's the menu:
burgers, hot dogs, chicken breast fillets in teriyaki sauce, cole slaw, potato salad, broccoli salad, chips, and cookies for dessert.  I'm making chocolate chip, peanut butter cookies, and washboard cookies.

Last week I purchased my first food processor and took it out for a test spin.  Made cole slaw, and damn if it didnt take me longer to peel the carrots and core the cabbage!  Trying to decide on if i should just buy potato salad, or make it. I decided to experiment with the cooking of the potatoes, because honestly thats the time intensive part.  I filled my bamboo steamer with the cut potatoes and steamed them for 20 minutes.  The texture was perfect, and it was almost effortless.  No mucking about with large vats of water, filling waiting for it to heat, boiling, draining, refilling vat....etc etc etc.  All that will need to be done is to top off the water in the skillet between batches and toss the cooked potatoes out, and toss the raw ones in.

Wednesday is cookie day.  Also up is cooking all the bacon that goes into broccoli salad, which will ease up...
Thursday....ahh sweet sweet Thursday.  Cole slaw, broccoli salad, and potato salad.  And for an extra special kick, the bridal shower.  I'm trying to keep an open mind about the shower.  But I usually dont fit in well at these functions.  Hopefully after a bit I can ignore my dress and relax.  I'd like to enjoy this shower, so am trying to stay positive about it all.
 Friday will be a day of last minute darting about.  The rehearsal is at 4 pm.  Then on to the barbeque.
 Saturday afternoon is the wedding.
Sunday will find us used up, wore out and much much poorer.  The dinner at after the wedding was paid for by us, and for the prices per person I'm not sure why we arent eating larks tongues off of gold plates.  But whatever, its only money.

Ok, until next week

update:  a loyal reader wanted to know what washboard cookies are.  they are very simple to make, but have a complex flavor thing going on.  how that works im not sure, but they are tasty!

 Washboard Cookies
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1 egg  
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon hot water
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups flour

Milx butter, brown sugar and egg.  Stir together soda and water, add to egg mixture.  Add flour and mix well.  Shape into balls.  Place on greased cookie sheets, flatten with fork both ways (thats how the cookies got their name)  Bake at 325 for 15-20 minutes.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Links of Love by T

Hi y'all.

I dont know if any of you read Links of Love but if you don't, you should.  T is a wonderful person, whose outlook on life is filtered through the lens of love, acceptance and understanding.  After my post yesterday, T wrote a post for me on Links of Love.  T shone a light on my journey and how it is seen by others in a way I've never thought of before.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Life Should Fit to a T

One of the few things in life we all struggle with is finding who we are and then accepting ourselves. Its not always easy or glorious. It is what it is, a journey of many roads and destinations. One surety along the way is our life needs to fit us to a T, as the old saying goes. For those who are Trans, even more so.

I can't say I understand everything that it means to be Trans but I know it has to be a constant struggle. Being stuck in a body that does not match your sexual identity can be depressing and frustrating. Even more so to those around you who care.

As one begins to be more confident in themselves and sure in who they are it can cause those around us to question themselves. This is probably more so true for the Trans community. I can see a parent, a child, a spouse questioning not only their relationship but themselves. Its not an easy thing to deal with for anyone.

Just as a Trans person struggles to find their identity the ones around them struggle to find theirs. A mother might question how she raised her child. A child might question their relationship, since they see a new person emerging. A spouse may question their own sexuality or relationship.

The reasons may be countless but the struggle is the same. A great upheaval or change is occurring in peoples lives. When you change yourself in life you change how you deal with those around you. You may not realize it but you do. Others see it even if you don't. Maybe not always consciously but they feel it.

When we make changes in life we have to remember those around us. The bigger the change in us the bigger the change in those around us. It may take time for its ripple to impact but it will hit and it will ripple back. Hopefully those in our lives can absorb change and the ripple is love and accepting.

Regardless of outcome our journey does include those around us. So if one of us falters or questions along the way maybe we should stop and take the time to reassure or help them as best we can. If people matter to us then our struggle is their struggle and that is our relationship.

I don't want to say this is a magic answer for things but it is an important step if we want to try and keep special people in our lives. It may not work and the issues may be ultimately to large or personal for someone to accept. Not everyone is strong enough to accept core change in themselves or those around them. But we should know if we change who we are, we change our relationship with those around us.

We may be the same person to ourselves but simply expressing it more outward. The problem is our view of change and that of those around us is usually far different. What may be simple or logical to one may be unfathomable to another.

I wish I had a magic answer but there isn't one. People are people and they have to adjust. Some will bounce back freely and others will never absorb the hit of change. That is true of any relationship in life. But I do believe if we truly try and extend patience and love to those who matter to us we can at least maintain a level of connection if not make it stronger.

With all that I have said one must be ones self. Our journey in life may need camp sites to allow those around us to rest but it it should not stop the journey. Because life should fit you to a T.

Love is Never Wrong

Sunday, July 10, 2011


I've fallen into discrepancy as to my level of happiness.  Life has become a series of still and empty hours interrupted by activities that must be performed, like dinner and laundry, bills etc.  When people are around, I liven up only to fall silent when they evaporate.

 TH and I have fallen into  platonic roomies, and nothing more, and I miss the tight tight closeness we used to enjoy.  We had each had our own friends and had separate yet co-joined lives.  No matter what was going on, we met back at the end of each day in a joyous meeting of minds and souls.  Sex has been a struggle throughout our marriage, TH just cant get past feeling guilty.  Where as I am a free spirit when it comes to sex.  Sex is like water and air to me, and twice in 6 months is suffocation rations.

TH cant get past the whole "my wife is a guy".  He claims he is/has, but he really hasn't.  I've been advised by friends to give him more time, and I am.  But I'm worried these are our sunset days. 

If these are the last gasping days of our union, I'm afraid to look into the vista of tomorrow. 

In the dark, whispers echo through my mind.  Whispers of body modification, of removing my breasts, going on T. 

TH says I walk different, more confident.  Larger strides, more aggressively.  Not feminine.

Lies, dirty lies I'm telling myself that I can be happy living within a woman's body.  Because since that day I turned my back on living as my true self, depression has been my constant friend.

Nothing has changed at all for me.  Choosing to live as my true self, I lose TH, choosing TH I lose my inner happiness.  But really I feel as though I've lost him, lost us.

fucking no choice at all that works completely

Monday, July 4, 2011

Five on the Fifth

The theme this month is silver, which I'm interpreting into black and white, sorta kinda, you'll see.  And yeah, there are 6 pictures.  But after seeing one of my subjects in very close up-ness I thought maybe you'd like to see the entire thing!

A very weathered log on Fox Island.

 A drain grate at a historical house in downtown Anchorage.  I took many pictures of this, you might be seeing more of this grate in later posts.  I fell in Love with this grate.  Yes, I know, I'm well odd, but hey you already knew that about me.

 The water has a thick and viscous look to it.  Shooting water in black and white really changes how it feels.

A signpost at the pipeline viewing  station outside of Fairbanks.

An extreme close up of a grill.  To let you see what the rest of this gorgeous grill looks like.....

 A custom imperial serie CL convertible sedan built in 1932.  The CL model was built in limited numbers from 1932-1933 and is regarded by many as the greatest of all Chrysler's.  This was snapped at the wonderful auto museum in Fairbanks.  You can see the whole car if you visit the link.