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About this blog

This blog is dedicated to telling those who read the entries about my journey in hopes that something can be learned. 

Entries in this blog

Confidence

By KarenPayne,

Prior to perusing my current path to transition I did many things correct except one thing which was to try and fit in better. The main reason was, I was sure surgery would not be an opinion as it seems the Benjamin standards were to strict for me in that I wanted to not fully come out yet still have surgery and then come out in the future. I was sure this would work for me but several therapists did not see it that way. With that, I decided surgery would not happen and did not worry about mannerism, as it would conflict with me teaching self-defense.

I still believe I was correct (not saying I am better than the therapists), no different than when I had liposuction, the surgeon said there was not much fat to remove and I thought he was incorrect but did not say anything. After wards the surgeon visited me to see how I was doing and said I was surprised that there was no fat then I thought. I had always been thin but a thyroid issue caused weight gain and never lost the fat no matter how hard I tried so I went for liposuction and was a good idea as it did increase my self-worth. My current therapist felt no different than me but was happy I decided to live as a female as required.

So my point, since last November an important lesson was learned, nuances came to light which I recently self-evaluated within me, all subtle but extremely important in the long run. They run the gambit from walking properly to clothing styles. I recently wrote about going to a Guitar Center and trying to be male but failed, it was because mannerism of me now did not allow it while last year it was the complete opposite.

With that said, I was wrong in thinking the trial period was not needed but was right that I needed to transition with surgery as part of the transition. If not for the trial period, I would still be perfectly happy but would not fit in fully.

So in closing out, at this time the trial has been a success, woohoo. For a while I thought it would never end (yes it never does end) but it has and I am fully confident that I can survive in this world as a female and will be accepted. Times have truly changed and thank goodness for people coming around to people like us.

11/10/2014 addition

Just back from the grocery store and while bringing the groceries in my neighbor stop to chat. As I was walking away, she said that my voice has noticeably changed. I thank her for the compliment as she knows about me transitioning and like true feedback. My evaluation is I have gotten better at voice control without even thinking about it. As anyone who has considered passing the voice is the most difficult part. You get the proper look but for many it fades away when they open their mouth. I am taking this seriously to the point of going to a voice coach after transitioning.

The following has no real train of thought (dang female hormones :D ) but this is what's up

Just received my packet from Doctor Bower, have started filling in forms and making appointments for EKG and HIV testing. Three weeks to go to formalization on name change. Going through the list of items I need to take with me to California and see that I need a ample supply of KY jelly. I decided to do NetFlix subscription, as being there for two weeks will need something to do when unable to get around. I know it’s getting real when just about every night I imagine myself being rolled into the room for surgery. Booked room for stay, normally $200 per night (yikes), discount rate is $155 which is $2000 total and I am use to places that charge (in my area) half that price, sure wish I had people in the area.

Photos for the hotel.

On the home front, I am picking up my final letter for surgery and document for name change/gender approval next Friday. Tomorrow I meet with my legal friend to get back money and Sunday off to purchase luggage as my current luggage is old and beatup or use UPS Luggage Shipping where they supply you with a cardboard suitcase then again I may not, will have to see.

Just returned from the post office and made my payments of $28,000 for surgery. The cashier at the bank said, can I help you mam? Gave her my driver licence which is still my male one and afterwards stayed with mam.

Every once in a while I get tired around lunch time at work and luck that I park my car in the underground garage in my building. So I went down to take a nap and as I am falling asleep I am thinking it's been four months since gender reassignment surgery and started going back in time thinking, self-evaluating how life has been treating me. My conclusion was that there is nothing negative at all about me changing gender and little to no complaints in other aspects of my life.

I believe one reason for me taking this journey back to January is because I made a commitment to my therapist that I would continue seeing her at least until my surgery anniversary date. This Friday will be my second visit with her since surgery, the first was right after returning home. Besides informing her that all is well I am going to indicate that I want to wait six months until another visit simply because how life is rolling along nicely now. I know full well that I can contact her in between visits so I always can reach out if for some odd reason things change.

Knowing what I know it's important no matter how well life is going to have a life line to a therapist as life can take a down turn in a blink of an eye and wanted to stress this to others as we all deal with what life tosses us differently. What you thought was truth before hormone treatment therapy will be different say 12 to 24 months later. Heck this weekend I cried my eye's out while watching a movie, heck before hormones I will not had any emotional response at all. For someone else this could very well throw them into a depressive state of mind which may be difficult to pull out of so please keep a life line open to a therapist along your journey.  

Lastly, keep in mind you are not alone, when there are feelings (dark feelings) of depression do not hold it within, find someone who will listen and by all means vent your feelings here in a blog entry. And don't watch depressing things on television and avoid drugs and drinking, they are temporary solutions that only cause less than great emotional and mental well-being. 

One of the woman I work with stopped me and asked if I would like to go out with the other woman in my section. There are six of them that every week they go out to dinner and have drinks.

She said that they all discussed should they ask me, all of them have known me for years in my former male life so they kind of know what I am like. Any ways they all agreed that I should be asked.

From the short chat with had it really sounds like it could very well be a good time and get in with these ladies. What is interesting is most of them are in their late to mid thirties which is much younger then me but that is not going to stop me from going out with them.

I am very grateful that they did think about me and accepted me.

On a side note I have noticed the difference in what woman talk to me about before and after transitioning in general, things I could only guess or even for that fact never guess. Like when I had my nails done in the past few months, the ladies there talk to me about those things that would never surface before I was Karen. So that is simply another aspect of a continuing journey and things to look forward too.

Seems Comcast has taken down all personal web sites without notifying me and this is were I stored pictures. The majority of these pictures are only stored there. So all pictures I have posted here will not show.

I called into Comcast and at this point they are clueless but I did a Google search and it appears that they discontinued the personal web sites yet the Comcast help desk person has no clue to this.

PISSED BIG TIME

Just got off the phone with Comcast and they said they would have a tech look into this. If I can get my images back I will purchase space on a provider's site that will allow me to create a home page along with having the ability to provide links to images so that they can be viewed on other sites such as this one. I am not holding my breath here, just wishful thinking that they can get me my images.  

Seems like in the past two weeks a lot has been happening, genital area is fairly clear, booked hotel room, doctor's packet arrived.

Last week I paid most of my surgery fee, the remaining amount is waiting for one office to receive my paper work for a $1,200 fee.

Friday I am going to UPS for UPS luggage. I decided to send my stuff done to arrive a day before I arrive. Everything will be tossed when going back home. So the contents are disposable, it pays to save some out dated clothing.

Next Monday I part one of my name change is done then two more weeks and it's official

Two more weeks for a phone appointment with anesthesiologist

I know I am missing something (oh that's right it must be from being mostly blonde now)

A co-worker pressured me today to learn about my surgery, long story short, he confirms my thoughts that the majority of co-workers will be fine with it. Matter of fact most people are guessing what is going on with me and are guessing I am transitioning. Such a great feeling

May do airfare on Friday.

Thought I would disclose my current plans for me in regards to making changes I thought about first then acted on. There were no rushed decisions, all well planned out beforehand.

Phase one was gender reassignment surgery and breast augmentation.

Phase II current to end of February

  • The Fraxel Experience: laser treatments not only improve the look of your skin, but it will improve the health of your skin and the strength of your skin by encouraging collagen turn over and proliferation. Your skin will become more like it was in your earlier years, and after about a month, it will feel better when touched. I had three sessions done as of yesterday. I don't see a huge difference but a handful of people (whom I did not tell them I had this done) said I looked younger or, there is something different about you. I will say that this is a painful procedure on the nose and upper lip but worth it since people do notice a difference. I plan on doing this once a year.
  • Fillers for cheeks, this was done last week. Did not notice a difference until a week later and this gave me a huge smile. This needs to be done every three months.
  • Botox for upper lip, done last week too. After the first week I am seeing changes everyday for the better.
  • Voice lessons begin end of January, have four sessions set.
  • Hypnosis to enforce what I learn with voice lesson. The practitioner said one session was enough after my consultation. I asked if having a session before and after would help, she said yes so my first session (two hours) is this Monday. 

On the Frazel, botox and fillers I received great discounts. I used them two years ago for my permanent cosmetics for eyebrows and got a discount then too which they do in December. 

Phase III (last one) is planned for March which is a brow lift. Same surgeon that did my breast.

After breast augmentation I said no more surgeries but after a discussion with the surgeon who did a follow up on my breast three weeks ago indicated I could benefit from a brow lift yet admitted I was fine without one but would improve my female appearance.

Admittedly I could easily not do any of the above in regards to phase 2 and 3 but I feel they will make me a tad better. I always stress when getting procedures done to not over do it, make me look natural, not fake. 

 

 

My best female friend pointed out to me recently that even when I was male that she perceived me as female because to her, my body structure/shape was that of a female which she kept to herself for a long time. She went on to say that I did not need makeup because of this fact. Note, one does not have to be gorgeous to come off as female, heck I see myself as average no matter what I am told.

Over the past year we would go out clothes shopping, the first thing that stuck in my head was how she could look at a piece of clothing and comment how well it would look on me or how badly it would look on me.

With that said combining born body structure/shape (which encompasses the face too) I think many overlook the fact that not everyone can pull off say a strip top because if we are overweight it will draw attention to us. Another example, the majority of male to female have no hips so one might look for tops that accent the hips with a flared top but again use caution as your body structure may exasperate the waist and take away what was done with the flaring of the top. We all have seen cisgender females out of shape wearing Spanx leggings and know they look great on an average figure but not so much for slightly overweight or excessively overweight. I bet if you asked them they would deny this and in their mind wear them because they are easy and are comfortable.

Back in the day I purchased female clothing void of the above and pulled it off, and still do. The catalytic for this entry comes in two parts, first from talking with my friends and just today the following.

I work in a company of 1000 plus employees where some I know from an elevator ride or waiting in line for lunch and chatting while my team mates are close friends and acquaintances. Coming down from the fifth floor to the first floor one of the employees (known only from the elevator and cafeteria), a female turned to me and asked how I was doing? Then say that, you nailed it last week. I said what do you mean? She said that outfit you wore last Monday, well you nailed it. Heck I can’t remember what I wore so I asked her. She said a grey skirt in particular as it complimented my long legs. I don’t have long legs but I know for a fact because so many people told me so that I have great legs. What I see happened was I wore a skirt that complimented me for the age I am at. Interesting enough the skirt was kind of see through so I wore a while skirt beneath the grey skirt and let the white skirt be a tad lower than the grey skirt. In short it works for me because of my body structure. Now if I were to wear tight jeans and tight top it would work against me because of my age and also would show that I don’t have great hips so back to the flared top.

So in closing focused to two things, body shape and appropriate clothing to compliment or enhance said body structure but also keeping in mind how old you are.

This afternoon I was talking to a female friend showing off my Miata and this guy looks out the car window and says yells to me and says "nice butt", had to be me because my friend was facing the other direction.

Then the other day my neighbor tells me her husband saw me walking down the street but did not know it was me and said she has a nice butt then she goes, that's Karen.

Funny in that I never got this before and know full well that taking hormones has zero effect on how one's butt looks so not sure why all of the sudden I am having men yell to me about my butt. What I can say even thought I am not into men that it's feels great getting these complements and is a confidence builder if nothing else. 

On a side note my friend whom I was with today purchased a new BMW sports car, seems that I was the fire to ignite her to purchase the new car. I think for the money my car was a better bang for the buck but will never tell her that as she spent $50,000 and I spent $30,000. In these matters best to simply compliment and leave it at that.

While performing some research I came across a memorializing for 2015 for trans-people who were murdered because they were different and society perpetuates the core problem which truly needs to change in the home before we see a drop in murders.

Some of the deaths were horrendous, being run over by a vehicle multiple times, being stoned to death, burned to death, strangulation.  I was not surprised which countries the murders happened and kind of numb in regards to how these murders were done which in and of itself is scary. Not being numb comes from things I have been involved with not related to these tragedies so all I can do is try and guess at what goes through the minds and hearts of their love one’s.

This is the page for 2015 with statistics going back to 2007.

The general public needs to take note that the majority of trans people are transgender because of a chemical imbalance in their brain. Many times work in the sex trade because they have no choice or have no self esteem because family, friends and those whom they are in contact with see and treat them as trash because they are afraid of things they don’t understand and the big one is it’s how they were raised. 

The majority who are transgender that want to have surgery don't have funds to move forward. The best path is to be diligent and save money for surgery and not lost focus on the end goal. One day you might have nothing to contribute while other times a few dollars. No matter it adds up in time and the key is time.

There are no magic path other than saving money but if you have two dollars to spare then by all means get a Power ball ticket for tomorrow's lottery, 450 million dollars. I might play the lottery once every couple of years but think this one is worth playing even though there are low odds of me winning.

What would I do if I won? Put my lottery ticket in my safe deposit box, tell absolutely nobody I had a winning ticket. Go about my daily life while seeking out someone to manage my money without disclosing I won the lottery. Once you are known as a winner everyone becomes your friend so I would immediately move, don't know where but would be someplace I was not known for winning the lottery. After that I would plan out my next moves. I would plan out my future very carefully by all means.

Any ways, got two dollars, take a chance.  

Several entries back I wrote about helping a male to female, surgery went wrong and ended up being hospitalized for many weeks because of rectovaginal fistula. Last week I saw her, she had a colostomy bag and indicated they would revisit what can be done in February.

This week she said there is a possibility of using a colostomy bag either internal or external for the rest of her life.

I can't even begin to imagine having the wear a colostomy bag forever because of a botched surgery.

My advice for anyone having surgery not out of pocket is to research the surgeons carefully. Her surgeon did 12 assist and four solo, Personally that is not enough for me to undergo the knife and you should think about this too.

How often?

The main risk of SRS is rectal wall tear resulting in rectovaginal fistula, which is estimated to occur in 1 of 400 vaginoplasties. Taken from  

 

Unfortunately at the time of my transition was when my sister developed a fatal cancer and could not bring myself to fly east to see her one last time. My impression was we have a decent brother sister relationship but after her passing my mother told me I was more to her than what I had imagined. I so regret not being stronger and just gone to see her. Please don't let something like this ever happen to you.

Since then I have been thinking of getting a tattoo of an owl which was something she was into but for a multitude of reasons never did get a tattoo of an owl.

Today I was walking in one of the more popular malls and spotted a Pandora store which I later learned was the only one in the greater Portland area. I asked if they had a owl charm and they did so I had them set me up with a bracelet and charm. So now as I see it I wear a token to remember my sister by on my wrist.

I miss you Suzy

Pandora.JPG

Indelible

By KarenPayne,

Two years ago, I decided that I was going to transform so one of my first real steps was with tattoos. Any tattoo I had done was well thought out and no thought of any being even remotely male centric. The image below shows several on my shoulder and several on my neck. Besides those, I have several below the waist in front and (horrors) a tramp-stamp on my backside although I deplore it being called a tramp-stamp. These tattoos not only provide strength and comfort but also mark a time of never going back to being a male. As a side note I had my eyebrows and eyelids done by a specialist with this type of work and brows were shaped no different than a female with my facial structure. After SRS I am getting my final tattoo, the design is still a work in progress but know it will be one a marker for remembering who I really am.

I know there are many who consider marking one’s body with ink is bad but for me it means so much more than some ink making an indelible mark on me.

Tats.jpg

I was watching a television show called "American Odyssey" where men in the show (in North Africa) are walking around in robes. I stopped and thought, wow, I have completely forgotten what it's like to have male parts swaying around between my legs and it has been just over four months since those parts went away. Now I can't fathom this at all, what was it like, nope, no memories. I think part of it was that after 2013 I was tucked 98 percent of the time as I could not bear to things moving around between my legs. I honestly thought about the above for a good 30 minutes and zilch.

Thinking of my new breast, I am guessing in time the same will happen, can't remember what it was like to be flat chested.  

In the end not remembering things from the past is yet more closure :) 

Over time it is hard to not recognize that not just with gender issues but every aspect of life we encounter a fear and doubt our abilities to cope. This is normal behavior until we key in on gender dysphoria because if nothing else we are living in a world that is gender centric, male or female.

Fear of being late with a car payment is vastly different than stepping out one’s front door dressed in the opposite gender. We can call the bank, chat with them and make special arrangements if your payment will be a few days overdue. Now when walking out the front door as a female or male those who see us and identify with us as the opposite gender quickly form an opinion be it good or bad unlike the bank who looks at your history with them over a period of time.

Once you walk out that door fear takes over similarly to standing in front of a group to give a speech, mouth is dry, we sweat all over the place but over time with repetition we become less sweaty and the mouth is not so dry until if we do it enough now the door is open to familiarity with little to no stress. Heck I know, if you caught me in 2000 standing in front of 10 students you would think I was a complete amateur but several years later stood in front of 375 people and was right a home.

I say it and hear others say it, it gets easier each time you walk out the front door dressed in the opposite gender. How many times does it take? That is going to be different for everyone.

What is critical is believing in yourself because if you don’t believe in yourself how do you expect others to believe in you? To believe in yourself it takes time in the comfort of your own home first watching various shows on television, study female mannerism then get up of the chair and practice what you just saw. A physical therapist once told me to suck in my abdomen several times a day and would find her in my head at the strangest times so I suck it in. Same applies to learning mannerism of the opposite gender. Example, you are driving in your car, look down at your legs, how are they positioned, legs spread apart or comfortably close together, are both hands on the steering wheel or just one? Correct as needed. Sticking with driving, this is the perfect time to practice your opposite gender voice where absolutely nobody can hear you, just keep the windows up at red lights.

The more you practice these and similar traits of the opposite gender the better prepared you are for stepping out the front door. So what if Mr. Jones sees you, wave and smile and don’t hasten your pace, take a deep breath and continue on. Hopefully Mr. Jones will become accustom to you being seen as a female yet there is one fallacy to this which is during the week you are male and weekends female. The fix for this is to be female more often during the week.

The key is to want it then prepare so you are as natural as you can be and remember it does get easier over time, I know because I have done many of the suggestions and more. 

In closing, I invite others to chime in with there suggestions as I DON'T know it all and there is a vast wealth of wisdom within this community that can be drawn upon.

Last year was my first interview, today was my second. 

Last year they did the interview in Microsoft Studio were nobody sees this until pushed to the web. Big difference this year, they brought all their equipment to the main Microsoft building where there are thousands of people walking by and the camera is hotter without the AC of the studio. During the prior video you heard a question being asked then I would answer. This year they ask a question which is masked out, I repeat the question coming from me then answer the question (yeah, spooky). 

Any ways I talked only about transgender when it came to non-personal but a passion I have  for the community. I will provide a link here when the video is done.

Had problems sleeping last night but got around three hours then awake for one then slept for about four hours. The pain during those hours was fairly intense until my friend woke up and gave me my meds. After the medication was taken I almost feel like I am back to myself unlike yesterday after medication was taken I was still in pain. Right now the pain is almost non-existing. It's just before 5 AM which means five hours to go for my post-operation checkup.

I can easily see myself back to work next Tuesday if recovery stays on the path it has been so far.

My recommendation for post surgery is to sleep in bed with your upper body elevated about 30 degrees or as I did, been living in a recliner which I did for operations in the past, works great.

Mornings

By KarenPayne,

For 99% of the days since surgery I have bad mornings. Most of them I wake up way too early. Many of them I feel nausea to some extent and just down right crappy. Usually take a two hour nap within two hours of waking up.

I have noticed the past few days that I am starting to feel better.

What really makes me feel normal is right after morning dilation and a nice hot shower.

Anyways thought others going down this path might be alerted to you too may experience this too.

When I hit the age of 30 years old I went from a night person who was totally into playing in a rock band playing in clubs or jamming with various musicians and getting up late to going to bed early and getting up when others were falling asleep. 

I then get up and be on the computer figuring out complex problems or putting on headphones  creating music. The family sleeping soundly and me doing this dressed gave me the little peace of mind I needed to keep sanity in the male body. I was afforded this luxury because I created a (hate to say it) man cave or should I say woman cave??? The majority of people in my position at that time in my life most likely did not have the luxury to dress and be free of worries of being caught so I am grateful for that.

This morning I got up at my usual time, 2AM (yeah that's right), go pee, get on the computer, check out what is transpiring on the developer's forums at Microsoft where I am a moderator. After scanning a few of the forums make coffee, sat back down in my boyshorts and tank top, check out Facebook and today note who is going to a pride event that I am going too. All the while the television is on with Led Zeppelin's Song remains the same. I then check out what's going on here then will shortly visit an exclusive web site cult (in a good way) devoted to like minded people that centers around edge weapons. I could take volumes about this place but will refrain but if you love all things shape it's a haven.  

By 3:30AM I will be ready to dilate, this morning watch a show recorded called "Edge of Alaska" which I really like, by 5AM more coffee and breakfast then take a drive to see about parking at the pride event, back home by 6:30AM, take a morning walk, take a nap, heck look what I have done and the sun has barely risen.

Oh, I forgot to mention answering email messages from friends or Skype with one or two friends that are kind of similar to me or are in totally different time zones.

You don't need to get up like me but do challenge those reading this to get up and do stuff in the morning.

 

Background, I was fortunate to have a lot of support with my transition, friends and acquaintance where there for me. As many here know not everyone is lucky enough to have support before and after gender reassignment surgery and believe that if possible nobody should go through this alone.

With that said, this week cumulates several months of assisting a male to female person to their surgery this Thursday. When I first started off with them they had a good deal of dysphoria and not happy about going through the past few months and surgery itself by themselves. They would stay home a lot which I felt was not good for their mental health and got her to get out and do things. Over the past few weeks purchased needed items for them needed for post-op life the week after returning home e.g. K-Y products and many misc. items that some people don't think about or might be told they will need (Marci Bowers was my surgeon and had pretty much everything laid out for what I would need in detail).

So at 4:30 AM on Thursday I am driving her up from Salem Oregon to Portland Oregon for surgery which is estimated to be roughly four hours and be there for her afterwards along with stopping by on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

During preparations for her surgery I also had her prepare for aftercare once leaving the hospital which lead to her talking to the few friends she has to bring her meals and check up on her from time to time (I will be checking in on her often as I work ten minutes away).

This will be my third time assisting someone and know that it makes a difference when I walk into their room to find them without anyone to be with them their eyes light up when I walk in the room.

Had one of those elevator discussions today, was waiting for the elevator and two female co-workers asked me what I thought about C Jenner, got that over with and then spilled over to “it’s a man’s world” which slid into my story of how after over ten years teaching firearm, impact and edge weapon self-defense that the main source of teaching dried up because of my transitioning. I also told them that perhaps in the back of my mind (and they agreed) I needed to teach and continually train because after transitioning it might take a down turn, which as I just mentioned it has.

That is no different than many trans people who give up so much more and I feel fortunate that this is the only thing in my transitioned that suffered. With that, giving up teaching self-defense over more than a decade has left a huge hole in my world so I did indeed gave up a good deal.

I have been thinking over the past few months once I am fully recovered it will be time to look at putting together a DVD teaching the basics of self-defense targeting the softer gender against the more powerful gender. Many instructors teach to the mass, meaning more to male vs male and only partly for females being attacked by males. My bet this has not been widely done but do know of three or four female instructors that teach this yet you need to be in training at their dojo and pay big bucks. My strategy is to look into a no frills approach which shows several common attacks and how to defend against them that does not rely on strength but instead body mechanics. Show the attack, dissect the attack and show in slow motion several times then at close to full speed how to counter the attack.

Another idea I have is to take this on the road, perhaps get people in different states to ask their support groups if they would sponsor an eight hour class which would be low cost if I can get someone to host me for my stay and feed me. This way everyone benefits.

The majority of techniques taught will be empty hand and will introduce people to the use of small flashlights and tactical pens to supplement their defense. For those who use a cane I am well versed in teaching self-defense with a cane.

Note, besides the elevator chit-chat I received a new tactical pen manufactured by a fellow instructor I met back around 2004 in Florida during a master instructor week long class. Tactical pens are great tools for self-defense. One can pick up one on the low-end for about twenty-five dollars while mine generally are range from just under one-hundred to close to two-hundred dollars but the average person need not spend that kind of money for a good tactical pen. Also, tactical flashlights are great too for self-defense and in my honest opinion one should never leave home without a flashlight after dark which is something I discuss when teaching. Bottom line, scumbags despise the light, they enjoy preying on the weak and the innocent from the dark, they don’t want to be seen so I say “light them up”.  

Note, I can not stress enough that having a tool with little training doubles your chances of escaping an attack. For me (and I have done this) I use them for defense, compliance and restraint. Once you see me with a simple pen against a large attacker and what can be done it generally inspires students with greater confidence.

Some of my tactical pens and flashlights. Top pen is one I show for what not to carry as it has a point that can stab and we want not to stab but to hit places were skin is close to bone. Next two are my favorite, the second from top runs about $80 while the third from top is about $300. Fourth one down is about $25 and works great. Fifth down from the top I just got in the mail today runs $125. Last item is a flashlight which I carry 24/7 for both illumination and defense. On the right is a flashlight I carry when wearing a jacket and have a second one next to my bed. 

Pens.JPG

RedRobin.jpg

This weekend, for those who are celebrating the Fourth of July please be safe if you have to drive consider that others will not. Yesterday I went to visit a friend for the day and on the way home so a horrific accident on one of the major highways which actually is not that uncommon but have to wonder on weekends such as this one if poor judgement was used and or any of them drinking.

If you plan on drinking make sure you keep it moderate if you must drive afterwards.

Happy Fourth!!!