Wednesday, 24 May 2017

The Worst Thing About Being in a Lesbian Couple!

Wait! Maybe it's the worst thing about living in a long haired lesbian couple, rather than all lesbian couples - but it's the amount of hair, everywhere!

I have spent many years analysing this and my conclusion is based on many factors. It can be debated of course, but in my personal opinion the worst thing about being in a lesbian couple is the amount of hair.
So much hair!
If you are a woman, or have ever lived with a woman, you will know just how much hair gets everywhere. In a shower not only does it clog up the shower plug it sticks to the walls, your body, it follows you out of the shower and lands on every part of the floor- it just doesn't quit.

Then once your out of the shower more will fall out when you brush your hair, when you dry your hair in fact the only way for a brief respite is if you tie it up. Although when you take it down that will of course encourage more hair to flee from your head.

Not only does this happen at home frequently it happens anywhere and everywhere!

Am I the only one whose head decides it time to malt in hotter climes?! I mean my hair will happily leave me to remain on pillows, bedding, sinks, floors  and even more so on holiday- it's almost as if it can't wait.

In my office it's all over my desk and chair, oh and my clothes. it's like it's job is to slowly but surely malt and find a resting place.

The thing is when living with another woman the hair thing is doubled! I mean at any given point our carpet has a top layer of hair no matter how often I clean it. Walking up stairs you can spot hairs, laying on the couch you can spot hairs, hell even eating you can spot hairs.

Now don't get me wrong this is a whinge and I know that, I mean if it was REALLY that bad we could shave our heads but the thing is neither of us really see that look for ourselves. And we are GRATEFUL to have full heads of hair..... don't get me wrong! We just wish it would stay on our heads instead of everything around us.

To try and cope we have invested in devices - tangle teasers, soft brushes, better conditioner all to try and combat the attack of the hair. Sadly though nothing works. Is there anyone with any other suggestions?!

There is a benefit though, the exercise when cleaning. I mean you can hoover hair, well I mean you can try but even the powerful vacuum we invested in eventually decided 'nah leave the hair'. It means before vacuuming I  have to get on my hands and knees and rub the carpet - small circles seem best - to get the the hair up. Thank god the dog doesn't shed!

It takes ages - I occasionally get blisters on my fingers but it does feel like a great arm work out. Just not one I necessarily want.

As Laura's hair reaches new lengths she now ties it up to stop me suffocating on it at night but that only helps slightly. And I still need to de-hair her before she leaves for work as once the hair is released in the morning it starts to flee.....again.

Geez I've even seen our hair on Bisbee.

So there you have it, or should that be 'hair' you have it ;) the worst thing about being in a (long-haired) lesbian couple is the amount of HAIR!

The rest of it is amazing! I mean there's all these reasons for a start:

So on balance I think we'll cope - we might need to invest in a new vacuum! 

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

#westandtogether Manchester

Out of respect to those who lost their lives in the atrocity that took place in Manchester last night (22.05.17) I have postponed the post I planned to put up to share what may be vital information when it comes to uniting loved ones separated last night.

I appreciate this has already been shared a ton on social media but you never know who is looking when so please share what you can, when you can.

These are the missing people: - check the article and share it!

Watching the news unfold the one thing that is clear is that among the awful details being shared the narrative that is being spread is one of unity and strength. Terrorists, whether acting alone or in a group, do not define a religion and I am relieved to see that people are making that message clear. This is not a time to look for people to blame. Yes we have to be vigilant but terrorists are and always be an extremist minority.

Hug those that you love a little closer today, be a little kinder to a stranger. If this awful atrocity teaches us anything it is that our lives can be taken at any point. Live the life you have with love and kindness. You never know who needs it. 

Our thoughts are with Manchester and the families impacted. 

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Love Languages (update)

Almost 5 years ago Laura and I completed a free online test to identify our love languages. If you haven't taken the test you can do it for here:

Our original post can be found here.

Knowing your and your partners love languages helps you understand how your behaviour is perceived by your partner. For example unless your partner see acts of service as a form of love then you spending hours tidying the house or cooking a meal won't mean you are showing love in the way they need it.

Our love languages back in 2012 were:
Interestingly we did the test at the weekend when a couple of friends were trying it and our results have changed. Turns out 3 years of marriage and a lifestyle overhaul has had an impact.

So here's my uneducated read on the changes. As I have got busier at work the support I have needed has increased and therefore Laura helping out with tasks / act of service is really appreciated by me. So the Acts of Service 'love language' is high on my list.

My top three are joint in a very accurate summary of my life right now, I am either busy and need support or not at work and wanting to make the most of every moment in close proximity to Laura.

For Laura quality time relates to 'switching off', spending time together. Time together while we are driving somewhere doesn't count for Laura as she doesn't have my attention - it's not quality time. It's just time.

However Laura is super capable and prefers to do things properly herself so me trying to 'help' is not a source of love for Laura (probably more frustration) but a hug to show my support will go a long way.

The experiment was as eyeopening now, 5 years later, as it was in 2012. Once again we got insight into how we could improve our relationship. We both clearly feel more secure in our relationship so the words of affirmation are less important. That is a big positive and something we have actively worked on.

If anything the love languages lesson is also an important lesson for life - I grew up treating others as I wanted to be treated, more and more I am finding that statement needs far more context. What is acceptable to me is often not as acceptable to other people. Therefore treating other how they would like to be treated is what I am working towards. it's hard. I like logic and people to think things through before calling me at work. I am trying to adapt to the fact that others like to use the call to talk things through. It can take a few deep breaths but I'm getting there.

The impact our communication style has is amazing, both positive and negative and it is worth taking 5 minutes to consider your communication style the next time you are about to interact with someone. See if it makes a difference.

Thursday, 11 May 2017

A Plea From A Wedding Guest!

As summer approaches and the 'Save The Dates' and wedding invites arrive it's a time for excitement. Who doesn't love the opportunity to share in a couple's joy as they share the amazing experience of getting married?!

We love a wedding!

This morning on checking my emails I received one from a PR agency asking if we wanted to share research carried out by a company called One4All, the Post Office gift card. Normally I scroll and delete through these types of studies but something caught my eye on this one. THE COSTS!

These figures are crazy! I mean times that by 3 or 4 weddings and the phrase 'prepared' to spend suddenly becomes 'fear they will have to spend'. 

Weddings got me like
The other factor they don't include is time off. The trend of having a wedding on a week day to save money is not something i'm a fan of. I don't wish to offend (and apologies if I do) but on top of the money being spent to attend, having to take a day or two annual leave is a bit of a kicker.  

I understand the reasons and cost savings for the people getting married but having 50 + people all having to take a day off means it will more likely cost their guest way more that being able to attend a weekend wedding. 

There are ways to lessen the blow when you're making people take time off. I am in the 31% that welcome a wedding abroad. If I am going to take a day or two annual leave then I want an experience. I don't want to pay for two nights hotel stay awkwardly far from home, find a dog-sitter and add a £100+ petrol bill to the costs to sit in a church or bland reception venue. It may just be me but I'd rather invest that money in spending time with the happy couple on a weekend away and not just pay out to become part of a crowd. 

In the past when a friend was getting married in San Fran we turned it into a California Road Trip with the wedding as part of it. Last year when a close friend got married in Idaho we stopped off at Toronto. Even way back in 2011 when our friend got married in Thailand we made a 10 day trip of it and added in island tours and a day in Egypt on the way out.

Wedding over looking Alcatraz
And when we got married we made it a trip to remember for everyone, not just us, by adding in a bachelorette party in Vegas before taking everyone to Idaho.

Just to clear I know we asked a lot of our wedding guests that traveled with us and on a side note we did keep it on a Saturday to make it easier for the locals attending.

Once in Idaho we had sourced group rates for the accommodation and offered a to-do list for those who wanted to explore. We paid for guests to spend two nights at the venue with us and on the day of the wedding we also organised mini buses for people to visit a gold-mining town. This was also because as our wedding wasn't till 5pm and we needed to get the house ready. We wanted to offer entertainment and something different. Something memorable. The same went for the reception, our menu was food from our travels around the world, we had a band, free bar and a DJ. We wanted everyone to have a  great time.  I like to think we gave people an experience they will never forget for the money they spent and time they took off. 

And we danced all night

That's not to say I recommend everyone getting married abroad, I am aware that there will always be restrictions but my request for anyone who can't is that they do something special on the day. If I am taking the day off I want to go to a beautiful venue, or somewhere a bit different, I want to ride on a double decker bus or play games in a castle court yard. I want something to make the day memorable.

One of my cousins got married on Loch Lomond, I happily took time off to stand on the banks with a beautiful view as it's not something I see every day. Another cousin got married in a conference centre with no outdoor space and I spent the whole day gutted that I was there- the sun shining outside gave me total FOMO.

With all that said I appreciate wedding days aren't about the guests but if the people you are invited are loved ones, close friends and your nearest and dearest then maybe give them a thought. If you were spending £800 + and taking a day off what would make it special for you?!

On that note, I hope you enjoy all the weddings you are attending and can make it an experience you'll never forget, for all the right reasons.

Ah and the One4All giftcard, - the people who did the research offer gift cards in case you are interested for a present idea. Itis a gift card that can be spent at 50,000 outlets and you can load with anywhere between £10 to £400. It can then be spent in outlets including:
Full list click here