Thursday, March 24, 2011

Another Class Presentation

It's been two years since we gathered to speak with the Graduate Therapy class. Every year the questions seem to be more introspective about our relationship and the 'how comes' of my trans experience. But this year the class was taped for our documentary, so he now has an additional 2 hours of taped material. Can't wait to see a copy of todays discussion.

Because last years class was postponed to today, we were in a larger classroom with 17 students, and although our presentation is getting better; our story keeps changing. The class was comprised of 14 females and 3 males and that's as far as I will break it down.

We think it's always important to tell our story in person so people will realize that we do normal things, we take care of our house, do our shopping, pay our bills and go out to eat. It's speaking with these groups and classes that will make a big difference in how others will perceive us.

And we always have fun doing them, and it keeps the conversation light and moving forward.

What lawmakers want to do is immoral | Concord Monitor

What lawmakers want to do is immoral | Concord Monitor

This is the testimony of Bishop Gene Robinson of NH before the State lawmakers about the morality of their proposed budget cuts.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Wanting to be Irish and Gay?

"Amidst the music, the corned beef and the beer dyed green, there is the story of the saint who gives us this holiday where we all declare ourselves Irish."

Lifted from a friends post, sorry Susan; so of course yesterday was the Feast of Saint, Paddy's Day, god bless, em. St. Paddy's Day, where everyone wants to be Irish so they can party and throw Shamrocks and drink green beer. Like the Mexican Celebration for the 5th of May, or St. Valentines Day, no beer is served but sweet little cards are given to the one you love. So maybe all these party-goers are on to something; if you throw a big party and serve drinks and beer people will want to be a part of your celebration.

Hey, that should work for the gay community, lets serve Red beer, for all the blood we have spilled as we lay dying, or lets color it blue, for all the bruising from being beating we have received. And if we serve this beer amid rousing songs and poetry proclaiming our Gayness where everyone is dress gaily anyway they want what a party we shall have. And for our symbol, lets use a torn heart that's weeping tears of sorrow, wrapped in anger colored red and curses that are blue, draped from the sword that is piercing our broken hearts.

Thursday, March 17, 2011


This is something I have needed to talk about since my last exam. I see a lot of suggestions on facebook to share and support the programs that provide mammograms for women which are good. It is advisable for women of a certain age to get hers done as a baseline mammogram.

As someone who has gone through breast cancer, reconstruction and bi-lateral implants, the procedure for mammograms if very different these days. Because I have had reconstruction and implants they will not do a mammogram on the side that had the breast cancer, so I have only my left side done. The first set of pictures is from four views which include the implants, so the pressure is not as tight as it had been before my breast cancer. My wife and I both agree, it would be a tragedy if by some slim chance our feet should slip out from under us while our breast are squeezed beyond pleasure. Not a pretty picture!

For the second set of pictures the technician must push the implant up and away from the remaining breast tissue to get the pictures. Much like one squeezes the bottom of her toothpaste tube to push the paste up to the top of the tube so it will flow on to the toothbrush more evenly. Get the picture! She did and I am happy to report that everything is clear, so until next year squeezing, don't let your feet slip while you are getting yours done.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Azaleas & PFLAG

Am so glad this weekend over, we never know just how we will be received being in such a large venue as the Valdosta Azalea Festival. It has been said that the attendance for the two day affair runs somewhere around 20,000 visitors, and so not knowing how people will react to our presence, it is always very stressful for me. Although I didn't really expect a public confrontation, I tend to expect them; but am always grateful when confrontation doesn't happen. We did sell a few buttons and gave away copies of our flyers, but the greatest moments were when people came up to us and thanked us for being in the community. People having moved into the area recently and had been looking for lgbt groups to become involved with.

Those who chose not to engage with us walked on by and others walked closer to actually see what we were about. The people who were involved making this happen like Joe, Sam, Kay all agree that being here at this local event was the best publicity for our bucks spent.

As it is the Azalea Festival, most of the bushes will be in full bloom by mid week.

Thanks to everyone who came by and sign up.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

First day of Festival in the books

Well, I am resting on my couch from a full day. Spent most of the day attending the PFLAG table at the Azalea Festival, we had a lot of people talk and get information, some telling us how glad they are to know that PFLAG has a chapter in town. The grounds were packed with people for most of the day and we mostly smiled and waved at people. I had packed our small flip camera to take some pictures of the tent and the people sitting, but Kay had taken it out of the box of materials and forgot to tell me, so I have no pictures for today. But will take some video tomorrow.

Its alway interesting to see who is a supporter and friendly and then watch a mother take her child's hand and direct their attention away from us as they walk by. We always see some interesting looking people at these types of festivals. So while we aren't disappointed we didn't make the news I am sure we got people talking about us, if not to us.

One good thing that happened is that we found someone who was selling a fruit we have been looking for. Kind of a large, very sweet grapefruit.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

2011 Azalea Festival

KiwiThe Valdosta-Lowndes Azalea Festival continues to grow and grow!For the 2011 Azalea Festival, March 12 and 13, 2011 in Drexel Park we will offer fabulous entertainment and activities for the entire family. ALL WITH NO ADMISSION COST!! We will have over 150 vendors with arts and crafts from all over the world, a huge KidZone with inflatable attractions, pony rides and a petting zoo, international food options, a K9 Frisbee chasing act, cloggers, live bands and so much more.

The Azalea Festival is created each year by a dedicated group of local volunteers who meet monthly to organize the details of the event. If you would like to participate on the committee, please contact the Festival Chairman at

Be sure to join us for the 11th annual Valdosta-Lowndes Azalea Festival March 12 and 13 in Drexel Park for an exciting event sure to be bigger and better than ever!

This is the cities biggest draw of the year, some 20,000 to 24,000 people over a two day period cities authorities say. This year our chapter of PFLAG has decided we need to get our message out to the good people of this area and I believe this should put best face forward. It is also quite racking and intimidating for me at least for the group. As there are over 150 vendors present, that also means that there is a strong number of other churches and civic groups present. Our point of being there is to bring the problems of bulling and discrimination out of the shadows and make an effort to create discussion. I hope we can maintain the discussion within the framework of 'civil rights' and not spiral into religious name calling. As always I expect the worse reactions from some people, but I will encourage our group members and those who sit with us to maintain our self control. I will encourage our members to greet those who pass our tent but only engage them if they come into our space and tell them our goals of Education, Support and Advocacy for those who ask.

If you are in the area please stop by our table we could sure use the moral support.


Friday, March 4, 2011


I have written that Kay and I started WeightWatchers about a year ago, and we have had good success with the program. The program makes you really think about what drives you to eat, especially night time snacking. Well, I have cut out most of the salty snacks and hardly eat sweets anymore. My weight when I started was 233 lbs, I know we shouldn't tell our weight or age however. So, we have been on the program for about a year; this morning when I stepped on the scale I weighted 198.4 lbs. In the last 3 week I would say I lost 10 pounds.

Last December I finally finished my 5 yrs on Tamoxifen, so its been about 3 months now and I have seen a quick drop in weight. My doctor told me that it would be difficult to lose weight when you are taking that drug; but I am very happy with the results of changing my diet, eating habits and being off all hormones. Some one you might not realize that I developed breast cancer after using the weekly estrodal patch at .25 mg every week. With breast cancer I had to stop taking all form of hormones and block what my body was making.

Losing 35 lbs over a years time is quite safe and I should be able to keep it off. I usually don't push products but WeightWatchers it really works!! So, if you need to lose a few pounds go find a group today.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Weeks are never what you ordered

We have said several times that we never know where our week days will take us. We always try and have a basic plan but by midweek everything seems to be blown out of the water. This was to be the week that will free us from watching Miss Trinity as her mother is finishing up the quarter and will have 2 weeks free herself.

For reasons I will not go into, we need to watch Trinity and her younger brother for the day, unexpected change of plans. That's what family does for each other, we stand with you and hold you up when things get complicated. That's what love is. Family that choose us has a stronger bond than our biological family; sometimes.

We are always enriched when we watch our 'grandchildren' but we have concurred with the old adage, "God knows what he is doing when he gives the younger generation children."

At the end of the day, we will be tired, but very happy and have learned something that our grandchildren have taught us.