Friday, November 30, 2012

A blast from the past...

Below are a couple of pictures from my archives.

The first one was taken as part of a professional makeover, and I'm estimating that it was taken in 2005.   It was done by Hor Shots,  a chain of shops with one in a fairly small town in Ohio.  Guess there wasn't enough business, because that one subsequently went out of business.

You can see that I had a lot fewer wrinkles back then, and my skin was a lot smoother!  Plus, trowels full of makeup!  But it was then, and still is today, my own hair.  It was fun having the girls at the studio put it in hot rollers, then comb it out.  I have the pictures buried, and other than the crossdresser who was with me the day they were taken, nobody knows they exist!

Haven't had the nerve, the money, or the time, to try a makeover again...  As I recall, the makeover itself wasn't too costly, but the pictures "ate my lunch."  Not sure what the future holds...however, if dresses become my everyday outfits next year, I'll probably need several repeats, to learn how to look as good as possible - i haven;t been able to re-create this nice an appearance by myself.

And I'll end up with some current professional pictures - which can then be showed to anyone. 

Having fun in a dress.

Following is a different kind of fun, and a picture that was taken with me in jeans.  Sitting in the engineer's seat of a steam locomotive would be tough to re-create, with me in a dress.  Actually, just sitting there wouldn't be a problem at all, but climbing up to the cab in a dress and heels would be the challenging part.  Bet a girl would have the attention of every male within eyeshot, waiting for her to return to terra firma.

No, before you ask, I don't run them, I was "just visiting" in the cab.  But, I really do like trains - a lot!

Having fun...but not in a dress...

Monday, November 26, 2012

An Eagle Celebrates a lonely Thanksgiving....

At this festive time of year, even our feathered friends get to celebrate Thanksgiving, though this fellow probably was probably extra happy since the feast was his alone!  It was one of the largest Eagles I've seen...and even cars whizzing by, or stopping 25 feet from him for pictures, did nothing to distract him from the job at hand!

Big Bird....and not the yellow kind!

The day after Thanksgiving was a sightseeing day for our little family...our son was home for the holiday...we took to the roads and ended up having dinner at a little seasonal waterside restaurant which was surprisingly enough, open at this time of year.  Couldn't pass up the chance for a photo.

This is a very short entry...nothing really new and exciting has happened since the last post, and there's no more info about a possible wardrobe change for me.  At this point, I don't plan to bring the topic up again...because I think I'd be comfortable either way.  And I'd rather the better half make the decision to put me in dresses, instead of my "forcing her hand" and later hearing about it.  If her decision is to leave well enough alone, I'll still be able to dress when I'm away from home.

Time will tell how it goes...meanwhile, things go on as usual.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

"Sheesh, you guys are all alike - wanting us in high heels and short dresses."

Finally it's my annual out-of-town weekend at an antique show, where I'm "recycling" (translation - unloading) a bunch of things we no longer need.  At these shows I usually am able to go to dinner en femme one night.  But with my most recent wardrobe adjustments, this time things worked out much better than I had expected.

It all began with my suitcase receiving some unknown and unseen packing assistance the day before I left. Then on departure day, the better half set out my "suggested" departure day's outfit while I was in the shower:  a pair of denim jeggings, pantyhose, and one of Mom's turtlenecks, with my clogs.  That was pretty much what I had planned to wear...    But as I was leaving the house, with my suitcase already irretrievably buried under an SUV-load of articles for the sale, she mentioned "You should be very careful about spilling anything on your clothes today.  What you're wearing is the least feminine outfit you're taking along, and that's your incentive to be more careful."

She confessed that she had repacked my suitcase yesterday, so "you'll look your best all weekend.  You'll be able to wear what you have on for Saturday and Sunday as well, if you're very careful.  You'll find two plastic bags, labeled "Dinner Friday" and "Dinner Saturday" in there and the stirrup outfits are for dinner each day.  If you choose to not wear them, you risk spilling on your daytime outfit...but that's your decision.  In case the inevitable happens, I've added two extra outfits for you, in plastic bags labeled "Day Wear Saturday" and "Day Wear Sunday." Each bag contains pantyhose and one of your Mom's color-coordinated stirrup outfits. The ladies you know at the show would find it very appropriate that you've chosen to honor her generosity by actually wearing her hand-me-downs."

"So, if you mess up your clothes like you did on vacation, your "reward" this time will be wearing stirrups and ballerinas all day at the show, as well as to dinner.  I consider it a reward because not only will you look pretty, you'll be introducing your new attire to many people, and preparing them for your dressing in even more feminine outfits next year. By the way, if you end up in reward mode, don't even think about wearing clogs with your stirrups, instead of ballerinas - that combination doesn't look good, and the girls will probably point it out to you."

Then came a big surprise,  totally out of the blue - and one which I would never have expected.  "Here's a heads-up on something in your future. Though I haven't made a final decision on it yet, and probably won't till next summer, I've been contemplating having you start wearing only dresses or skirts.  If I decide I'm ready for that to happen, we'll go shopping for you next July or August, for somewhere between 7 and 14 stylish women's outfits, and have them altered to fit properly.  Just so you know, I'm planning on using our clothing budget for the next couple years 'now' to make sure it will be at least 14.  That may also require a few visits to the thrift shop...   Since fall sales are usually under way by then, it'll keep costs down, and  you may actually find yourself the proud owner of as many as 21 different dress and skirt outfits.  Won't that be fabulous?"

My response was muted...."Yeah, I think so.."

"'If' the process actually begins (or maybe it's 'when,' I truly don't know yet), you'll be wearing your new wardrobe every day, starting the day before you leave for next November's show.  That's because you'll be assigned an important task that day, your very first day in dresses.  First thing after breakfast,  you and I will pack up a big plastic bag with all your remaining pants, shorts and capri's (yes, I know I earlier exempted them from disposal, but I changed my mind), except for your Mom's hand-me-down stirrups.  Together we'll take them to the charity shop, where you'll be the one to actually count the contents with the clerk.  I'll watch and you, in your pretty new dress and and new patent ballerinas, conversing with the clerk about your donation if she should ask questions about why you're voluntarily giving up your pants!  That'll definitely be a Kodak Moment...I'll be taking lots of pictures, so you'll always be able to remember how pretty you looked on your first errand on your first day in dresses!"

I blushed...beet red...while asking if I'd still be able to wear Mom's stirrup outfits.

"Good question, sweetie. Yes, you'll initially be wearing them, but only for her visits, and only for a few weeks.  Then I'll put you in dresses and skirts for three or four visits, or maybe a week.  We'll see how well she handles it.  If she likes your new appearance, and I'm sure she will, from then on, no more pants.  You'll make a second visit at the charity shop, to finish donating the last few pairs!  In addition to giving us a tax deduction, those donations will also guarantee that you'll never be able to "back pedal" into pants, since you won't own any, and mine won't fit you.  After spending a small fortune buying you a complete women's wardrobe of skirts and dresses, plus the accessories, you'll be wearing and enjoying them for a long time to come."

So I asked "Can't I hang on to a couple pairs, for times I need to look less feminine?"   "Why on earth would a girl need to look less feminine?  Most everyone can see your basic femininity - hair, nails, waxed eyebrows, hairless arms and legs - already.  Once you're in dresses, I'll want you to look more feminine, all the time. Period.  You'll dress, look, and act like a girl.  So, no, you won't be keeping any pants."

"By the way, I plan to appropriate several pairs of your newest, cutest capri's, and alter them to fit me.  Your "loss" can be my "gain" - it's less expensive than my buying new capri's.  They're pants, but they'll help me be a bit more feminine.  Whenever I wear them, you'll probably recognize them as formerly being yours.  You can always feel free to remind me that they used to be yours!  However, don't even think about trying to get them back, sweetie. They won't fit you any more!  These are a few of the minor details and "rules of the road" we'll review later, after you've had a chance to experience life in dresses for a few weeks."

"Don't look so shocked over all this...if it happens, I know you're going to love it." My response was, "But what if I don't?"  She replied, "Since you'll be wearing skirts or dresses every day, whether you like it or not, as time goes on you'll simply get used to being feminine.  And trust me, it's not so bad....half the population is female!"

"Once we've started buying your new dresses, you must realize that your wardrobe WILL be changing.  You'll permanently lose the privilege of wearing pants starting in November of 2013.  I just can't let you confuse our friends and neighbors by switching apparent genders willy-nilly.  And then there's the matter of the money we spend for your new girly things - once we've started buying them, you'll just have to wear them."

"So for the time being, be patient, enjoy wearing those stirrups and capri's while you still can, and please don't bug me about my decision on this.  Asking -  even once - between now and the time I discuss it with you again next summer, will assure your future in dresses.  Instead, think about all the positive benefits a pretty new wardrobe would have for you, how many new female friends you'll gain, and realize that once it happens,  you may need several months of practice to feel totally at ease socially, as a woman. But in any case,  'the new you' WILL look fabulous while you learn!"

"Think about what you see girls wearing.  Skirts are perfect all year around.  Just-above-the-knee skirts of various fabrics are modest, and appropriate for everywhere you go, particularly in Fall, Winter or Spring.  During the summer, girls look much cuter showing off their legs in casual denim mini-skirts than shorts and capri's...and so will you, come the summer of 2014. You'll have so much more fun at car shows, sporting a mini skirt and flip flops, like other girls.   I know how much you love wearing house dresses around the house and yard.   So, you're part way to your goal already.  Meeting new people, selling things at shows, vacationing, touring, and socializing with your (and our) friends, all while wearing skirts and dresses, heels, nail color and full war paint, should be a complete non-issue.  And in the event any consulting jobs come your way, your knowledge is the same, whatever your presentation.  Dresses and heels will be professional enough that you'll look just like any other working woman."

"I'm really looking forward to seeing you all dolled up for your first party, wearing a short-but-classy evening dress and sexy stiletto high heel sandals, with beautiful red nails all around, matching lipstick, and your long hair fresh from a morning with Jessie at the salon, sprayed and pinned into a glamorous, girly up-do!  Another big step forward and another Kodak Moment, so we can both remember how nice you looked!"

"You'll soon come to realize that losing your pants is not actually a loss.  Instead, it's a big gain - you'll develop a much more attractive, feminine appearance and personality.  You'll eventually get used to dealing with your daily makeup routine, and showing off those legs 7 days a week, all year around - whether they're bare, with rubber flip-flops and painted toes under your mini-skirts, in sheer nylons and ballerinas or heels any time of year, or in opaque tights and booties under your dresses for additional warmth when you're shoveling snow or otherwise must be out in wintry weather.  And you're absolutely going to love the freedom skirts and dresses give you - the only way to describe it is that it feels like you're almost naked in public, but in reality, you're appropriately clothed!"

I blushed again...even redder this time.  "Sweetie, if your cheeks always flush that much, and stay that way once you're in dresses, it'll mean less time applying your makeup!"  And, my blushing continued even after she reminded me that it's the last we'll talk about this till she decides next summer, and promptly changed the subject...
So, I won't even begin to contemplate next November...since wearing dresses may, or may not, happen.  And I'm not going to inquire at all - that way she can make the decision.   In the past, things have often "heated up" like this, then melted away just as suddenly.  But if not, November 2013 could be my time to transition...I'll find out next summer.  If it happens, she becomes the one "wearing the pants in our family."  Time will tell.       
Right now I 'm just concentrating on "not" spilling anything on my clothes any time or place...  In years past at the show,  I've already been reminded by men that I should be using the women's room.  Wearing outfits like these would probably mean I'd have to use the women's room - and since some of the folks know me, that might be a problem unless I'm fully dressed.  Like next year?


 Here's how I looked for dinner Friday night...yes, I love wearing this outfit!

A self-portrait - the rich colors in this blouse are gorgeous!  No wonder the better half included it.  And "blue is for boys" certainly doesn't apply in this case.  My eyebrows got waxed recently, and my tech told me afterward that she shaped them to look good with the stirrups and ballerinas I was wearing at the shop that day.   Translation - nice and thin, just like a girl's!

Ready for dinner Friday evening.  No way these legs belong to a guy...

Saturday morning at breakfast I managed to spill some scrambled eggs on my turtleneck and denims...but cleaned them up quickly, with no major stains.  That was a close call!!  At the restaurant, there was also some confusion over the signature on my bill for breakfast, and the clerk ended up calling my room for "the lady who just ate breakfast there. " I gave my name, and said I'd be right down to straighten it out...  Another Miss-identification!

As Saturday wound down at the show, a couple of the guys I know invited me out to dinner, as usual.  We always have a nice evening, and agreed to meet in front of the hotel, after showering and changing clothes, to go find a restaurant nearby. Shortly after getting back to my room, I remembered I'll be wearing stirrups and a blouse for dinner...there's no way I'm going to risk staining my clothes tonight and ending up in one of Mom's outfits all day tomorrow. Since I don''t have any choice but to look girlie tonight, I figured I might as well do my makeup, too, and make myself look as pretty and feminine as possible for the guys.  But they probably won't even notice, since it'll be dark when we meet!

Here I am, ready to go for dinner with the guys Saturday night.  How do I look? 

As I was putting on my makeup and lipstick, I wondered why I was given two pairs of tan stirrups.  I'll have to ask when I get home!  (The better half's response was: "Because you look attractive in them.  Don't worry, you'll get to spend lots of time in those outfits this winter.")   Before going downstairs, I snapped the above picture for this blog... and then went to the elevator.  Much to my shock, the guys were waiting for me right at the elevator door,  instead of out front in the dark.  And, with plenty of light in the hallway, even these two typically-oblivious males did a double-take.  There was no way they could avoid noticing my apparent new gender.

Both smiled broadly.  One told me that I make a very attractive girl, looking probably 10 years younger than I did at the show.  And the other said "I didn't realize we were going out to dinner with a lady...but you look pretty, so it's fine.  You really should dress this way every day - it makes a major improvement in your appearance!" Gee, thanks guys - I think!

Then off we went - the driver took me by the arm, escorted me to the car, and helped me into the back seat.  They took the front seat. One of them noticed my engagement ring, pronounced it beautiful, and asked if wearing it helps to fend off the guys... My answer was "Yes it does.  In my younger days, I never approached a girl wearing an engagement ring." They agreed that they didn't either.   There was no more discussion about my attire, except I noticed that the guys arranged for me to sit between them at the table, and they cleaned up their language a lot.  Was it my appearance?  Or maybe the engagement ring?  (You can see it in the photo.)

Our female server Miss-identified me for the entire visit, but that wasn't a real surprise - it happens all the time.  I think the guys enjoyed having dinner with what-appeared-to-be-a-girl, and we talked about the same things we would have if we were three guys, not two guys and a gal!  Unfortunately, they were "cheap dates", and didn't buy my dinner...the server was even surprised that the guys made their girlfriend buy her own dinner!  But in any event, it was an exciting evening, even with me unavoidably stuck in girl mode.

The guys' parting comment was: "Next year, will you be wearing dresses and heels to the show, instead of pants? You'd look very pretty in them..." I responded "Thanks for the encouragement! Yes,  I'll be here next year, so come see me, then we'll both know. And if I am, you guys better plan on buying my dinner both Friday and Saturday nights!" "OK, It's a date, then! Just make sure you're wearing high heels, with your dress above your knees!" I laughed, and replied "Sheesh, you guys are all alike - wanting us in high heels and short dresses.  How on earth do you expect me to know what dresses I'll wear?  Maybe I haven't bought them!  So, we'll all have to wait and see, OK?" As we got on the elevator to go upstairs, I blushed deep red at what I had just said - my answer would have been  perfect, coming from a girl!  And as the guys got off on their respective floors, each gave me a good-night hug, putting that bright red back on my cheeks again... Thankfully we were alone on the elevator.

When I got back to the room, my blushing had subsided, so I tried another self-portrait.  Unfortunately, this one didn't turn out nearly as well as the last one!

So as of Saturday night, it looks like I've made it through the weekend without messing up my original outfit...or either of my stirrup outfits...and that's a good thing!  I'm not going to eat anything sloppy for lunch on the last day, so I shouldn't have to change in the men's room and spend the rest of the day at my table, looking like a girl without makeup.  Trying to apply makeup in the men's room would be way too embarrassing....

Sunday morning went well, and when I got dressed, I took the initiative to pack my clogs and wear my ballerinas...which was a noticeable clue to the ladies that I was wearing feminine clothes.  In fact, a couple of girls wanted to know what brand of shoes I was wearing!  And when I got home, the better half was so pleased to find me wearing them on my own, that she handed me a package containing another pair, for me to break in and then wear for dressy occasions.  I suspect I made a few brownie points....

Friday, November 2, 2012

"Down the hall, then turn at the first hallway and it's the second door on the righrt"

There are a number of errands on tomorrow's agenda, for me to run - to the Primary Care Physician's office and then the Dermatologist, the shoe store (to look for peep-toe ballerinas) and the air pollution inspection station.  And the better half has already picked out my outfit...a pair of gray stirrups and a turtleneck, one of several outfits which come to me "with a history."  Or maybe more appropriately, a "her-story."  They formerly were my mother's, but no longer fit her when she went into the nursing home.

Since they were still in great condition, the better half put them in my closet, along with some of Mother's turtleneck blouses, rather than the charity box we had from our time cleaning out and selling her house, though I didn't know at the time.  And if I had, probably I wouldn't have agreed to it.  But recently she's begun to improve my appearance by integrating Mom's outfits into my everyday wardrobe.

I cheerfully admit that they're comfortable, fit well and look very feminine. Mom is thrilled to see that I'm now wearing her old clothes on a regular basis - she enjoys seeing them again, even though they don't fit her any longer.  And she thinks it's a shame that none of the dresses she owned which would have fit me, survived the house cleaning when we sold her place,  She'd have loved for me to be wearing them...    But the better half hinted that, if they'd actually survived,  by now I'd be wearing them three or four days a week!

It's an unusual feeling to recognize that my newest pants outfits, ones that the better half not only approves of but insists I wear two or three days a week, are all hand-me-downs from Mom. Back in the day, I envied her for wearing her cute stirrup outfits (yes, including ballerinas) for her daily activities.   Now, I just have to look in the mirror, to see myself wearing them (with my new ballerinas, since hers were too small).  Every time I notice my reflection in shop windows and glass doors,  I'm reminded that I now wear those very same outfits that I once envied Mom for wearing!

It's easy to predict what I'll be wearing for my doctor appointments tomorrow, since "You'll need to look like Ms. Sherman at both Doctor's offices.  And besides, Mom's outfits really help you display those cute ballerinas you've started wearing every day."

My day out began with a stop at the pharmacy for a purse-size bottle of perfume.  Then it was on to the shopping center for a visit to Radio Shack.  From there I walked down the street to Payless for some shoes.  I tried on some of their flats, but the fit wasn't quite right, and there weren't any with peep toes.  They had a pair of cute white pumps with 2" heels (but no peep toes) that fit reasonably well and which I actually considered.  But I doubted that they'd go over well because the heel was higher than 1-1/2" and the better half definitely wants me showing off at least a couple prettily painted toes on each foot.  And worse yet, they were white.  If they had stocked black, I'd have bought them on general principles and held them for later.  So I'll have to try another Payless in the area.

Then it was off to the Primary Care office to pick up my referral.

How I looked at the Dermatologist's office...

With referral in hand, I proceeded to the dermatologist's office for my appointment. When I got there, first things first. I had to use the restroom, so I asked where it was.  The lady at the desk looked up at me, with my purse on the counter and French manicure in view,  grabbed the restroom key and slid it over the counter, while reciting "It''s down the hall.  Go out this door, go straight, then turn right at the hallway and it's the second door on the right, Ma'am."

I followed her directions precisely, thinking only about the traffic I'd hit on the way home, and not even contemplating what was about to happen.  When I got to the second door on the right, I was surprised with the "Women" sign on it.  I tried the key in the men's room door on the other side of the hall, but it didn't work.   Miss-identified again, by a woman, and this time it seems to have resulted in my having to use the women's room.  The staff-approved invitation was in my hand.

I was well past the point of walking back to "right" the situation - guess I shouldn't have had the extra glass of tomato juice at breakfast!  Figuring it was a one-person restroom, I put the key in the door and pressed on.  Was I ever wrong - four stalls and a really comfortable looking couch, in a very clean looking-and-smelling restroom!  Fortunately I was I took care of business (yes, I sat) and quickly washed my hands, so I could leave before another lady got there.

No sooner had the door closed behind me as I left, when a clerk I recognized from the doctor's office came around the corner.  She smiled and said hi as we passed in the hall, and she let herself in using her employee key.  She could tell I came out of the women's room by where I was as she came around the corner, and when the door slammed behind me.  But, she didn't say anything, and my timing really was excellent!

Once back in the office, I noticed that the waiting room was full of women.  Not a man in sight, and all the clerks were female.  They eventually pulled my file, but never let on that they had Miss-identified me.  No gender-specific pronouns or comments were made by the girls - well, other than the doctor and her assistant (for some reason, my female Primary Care doctor always refers me to female specialists when possible) complimenting my French acrylic nails, which they thought were nicer than their own...even though I was somewhat in need of a fill.  And they both told me how nice my hands will look with pretty red nails instead of the French...has my better half tipped them off?

From there it was a smooth return prepare for a solo weekend out of town.  More on this to follow...