Friday, December 31, 2010

What a year!!

So this evening I'm sitting here, alone, and contemplating a hell of a year! First, when you're married to a musician, you get used to having the "big" nights on your own. This evening, my beloved Vincent is playing a gig in south Florida and I'm delighted. One of the incredible and unexpected benefits of our foray into swinging is a closeness and confidence that is out of this world. Whether he's here or not, I feel his love so deeply in my heart. Moreover, my "missing him" has continued it's evolution from a sense of loss at his absence, to a sense of joy at his adventure. Beautiful.

In January of last year, we had yet to "play" with anyone and it still wasn't clear if we ever would. But 2010 brought more amazing people into our lives, who taught us a few lessons, and who held our hands in a sense as we transitioned into being more open, and more together. Thank you all, from the bottom of my heart.

I lost a few friends and neighbors last year -- some to death and some to simply moving on. All of these losses continue to remind me that life is both short and precious. Every day that we limit ourselves, withhold our best, and deny experiences and joy to others, is one more "loss". A lost day. A missed connection. An opportunity to give and receive that is never, ever coming back.

Our "real life" -- the one of work and money and clients and efforts -- continued to grow and expand last year, even in a pretty tough economy. And it continues to be so incredibly satisfying. What we do isn't rocket science or brain surgery, but it is useful and in my opinion makes the world a better place. Who could ask for more from their "job?"

We have both expanded and deepened some of our friendships, and offered some measure of forgiveness for a few others that we thought were beyond salvaging. A success, as far as I'm concerned. In the coming year, I hope we continue to deepen those that are forming and add a few more to the mix. Don't want to get greedy though. I'm happy with a few good friends rather than a ton of acquaintances.

As noted in last week's HNT, this year has represented a sea-change in my happiness with my body, not only what it looks like, but what it can do. Vince and my sex life is smokin'! As I joke with him, If I go more than 36 hours without a rockin' rogering I'm a cranky-puss! The only solution is a headboard rippin', bend me over, pull my hair (or just stroke me slow, deep, and sweet) fucking.

I've enjoyed my foray into bi-curiosity and look forward to more, more, more! I just need to quit getting so caught up in the moment that I forget to make suggestions! More importantly, Vince has had a sea-change revelation of his own. While I don't presume to speak for him, we are looking forward not only to the ladies (for me AND for him) but also for me to enjoy and explore a few new men, a touch of "strange" so to speak.

But so much of this year has truly been about love. Love for Vincent above all. Love for friends and family. Learning to enjoy and express love and affection without fear or threat of loss. Not in a sappy, silly, or self-destructive way, but as a person who sees the world, as the great writer William Saroyan once said, "with a clear eye and a kindly heart."

The year 2010 has brought me, and ultimately Vincent, many steps closer to that ideal. So even with the bad days, the losses, the challenges, I cannot say that this was a "bad" year. It was wonderful! (Raises wine glass to the computer screen) Thank you all for sharing it with me.

With love,

Thursday, December 30, 2010

HNT -- Favorite (Easy-peasy)

Favorite HNT of 2010? Well that's a piece of cake folks....

This was the first HNT photo I ever took and ever posted, January of 2010. I like it because of the story, the look, the expression, the lighting, etc., etc. I LOVE it because it is... a first. It's fair to say that in real life there are NO photos of me in bathing suits or hell, rarely even shorts. I have spent decades ashamed of my body and horrified by how I look, naked or clothed. This photo (and HNT in overall) represents putting that behind me. I think the nervousness and anticipation on my face speaks volumes. Of course, at that time I had no idea I'd soon be taking photos like this....

Or with my delightful Vincent's help, ones like this....

HNT has been a fantastic journey. (Thanks Os!) It's fun, the compliments are real ego boosters -- both on the body and the work -- and it gives me yet another layer of confidence that I carry with me on a daily basis, knowing that lil' ol me, Ivey Lane, has some super-sexy pics floating around the internet.
Check out the rest of the favorites over at Osbasso's. It's been a heck of a Half-Nekkid Year!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

HNT -- Three Wishes (and an extra)

Happy HNT you lovely folks! I've got to admit, I'm really diggin' participating in these themes. This is surprising to me 'cause quite frankly, I've never really considered myself much of a joiner, but that's another thing that's changed during the course of 2010, and I'm sure I'll be posting about all that soon enough.

So Osbasso (don't forget to check out the rest of the Half-Nekkid-ness!) threw out the challenge, to sum it up, choose three HNTers/Bloggers to give a Christmas wish. It can be from the heart, humorous, or fantasy. Per the guidelines, it shouldn't be someone too close, but since I'm not too much of a rule follower I did choose folks I've exchanged an email or two with. Not surprisingly to me, my closest, or rather most personal friendships I've developed in the blogosphere are with men, so I'm giving three wishes/gifts to three ladies -- Minority Report, Another Suburban Mom, and Babe Lincoln.

To Minority Report -- I wish I could give you to my excess libido; Lord knows that I've recently discovered I have more than enough! ;) In truth though, I think your openness, honesty, and warmth is inspiring, as is the love between you and your hubby that comes through your words and your photos. I so wish I would have known about you when I was going through my interminable "dry spell." You help people, MR; I'm sure of it. And even though our circumstances were and are different, I'm equally sure that you will ultimately triumph.

To Veronica -- I wish I could give you my kitchen, or at least a meal in it! I would love to have you sitting at my bar (or heck, even manning the stove!), vino in hand, laughter and stories bouncing off the walls. I found your blog before I ever found Ivey Lane. I enjoy reading your stories and adventures, but your perspective is amazing. You're funny (that's no surprise) but only recently have I realized how deep and genuine your desire to help people really is. In a world full of busy-bodies and narcissistic twits, you are a true gem -- a courageous, compassionate, wise, humorous, sexy, sweet person. Perhaps if you do make it to Florida next year, I'll be able to give you this gift in person. That said, if you haven't noticed, I think this one would really be a gift for me!

To Babe Lincoln -- I wish I could give you a cup of coffee, or hot tea, whichever you prefer! Seriously, I know I'm going to be in Chicago at some point in the future or maybe you'll find yourself in Florida, but if and when we're in the same state, I'd love to just sit and chat... in person, an in-real-life, face-to-face conversation. I think we'd laugh our asses off. I love your writing. I love how you chronicle your thoughts and adventures... and mis-adventures. There's something about your journey that just feels familiar to me and though I may be mistaken, I think you and I could chit-chat for hours. And when the coffee is empty I think you could help me pick out a kick-ass corset!
So that's my three wishes for my three chosen bloggers. But as promised in the title of the post, I have an extra Christmas wish for you all. In honor of my most recent loss of a friend, I wish you all love. I wish that you have it with your husbands and wives and girlfriends and boyfriends and families and friends and children and most of all for yourself. I hope you take every opportunity that comes your way to choose love, joy, and laughter over limitation, fear, and doubt. And when you have the chance to let someone know they're appreciated, that they are valued, that they are loved, you take it.
Merry Christmas!


Monday, December 20, 2010


Last night, as I was waiting for Vince's plane to bring him home to me, after a day filled with Christmas shopping and chatting with friends, I find out an old and dear friend was found dead. Her name, her real name, was Kate and we'd been friends for 23 years.

Right now it's not clear how she died, but it was not expected. Natural causes, though unlikely, is not unheard of, but due to a few odd circumstances, suicide is also a possibility.

I am consumed with grief.

She and I weren't close in the way of women who call each other on the phone and go shopping. Instead, we were friends of youth and shared experience. We met through the theater and acting and more nights than I can recall we shared licquor fueled discussion of life, the universe, and everything. More than once or twice, or hell 10 or 20 or more times, she and a few others were still at my house still partying at 4:30 in the morning when I finally went to bed and told them to turn off the lights when they were ready to sleep. For the past 23 years, she and I spent every New Year's Day together, first 13 or so at my various houses and the past 10ish at our friend Claire's place. I was looking forward to seeing her there, or somewhere, this year too. Just like always.

She was one of the circle of friends I mentioned in my post about "spicy vanilla" friends, with Claire, an artist and wit. She too, wasn't your average woman. Sadly, she never married, rarely had dates. Last New Year's she was joking about becoming the remaining "cat lady" after Claire married for the second time. She loved her cats and that's part of the mystery. When her body was found in her home with the door unlocked by another mutual friend who went to check on her after she didn't show up for work and didn't answer repeated phone calls, her beloved cats were nowhere to be found.

She wasn't an easy woman, by any means. She had a razor sharp mind and fearless mouth and wasn't afraid to use either. She reserved most of her scorn for the stupid and slow but was a formidable advocate for animals and people she called "the too nice for their own good." More than once she shut up a bully or other idiot who was picking on someone who wouldn't or couldn't stand up for themselves. She did it once or twice for me. She had a reputation for being "not nice" but only to those whose stupidity or rudeness earned her wrath.

She had a huge heart. And she never got to share it with a partner. And that, I think, is the main cause of my grief and sadness. She deserved a loving partner as much as the next person. But for reasons I don't know and probably wouldn't understand, she never found the love of her life, her partner, her compliment, like I found in Vince and like so many of my friends have found in each other (D&M, D&T, T&E, P&A, and on and on and on.) Whether she took her own life or it was inexplicably cut short, she didn't have a snuggle-buddy, a life-partner, someone to share the burdens and double the fun of run-of-the-mill life. And that is indescribably sad to me.

She wasn't yet 50 years old. She was beautiful, funny, smart, kind, compassionate, brave, fierce, and a force to be reckoned with. And I was looking forward to our usual New Years Day shenanigans. It never occured to me that she wouldn't show up for the party this year.

Sayanara, sugar. I miss you already.

[UPDATE -- 12-21-10 The latest news is that the coroner report came in and Kate died of an aneurism (sp?). The cats were apparently hiding and finally came out last night. While still intensely tragic, I am very relieved to know it wasn't worse. Thanks for all the kind words.]

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Hey! I made the list!

So over there on my sidebar you'll find the link to a cat named Aaron, whose blog is RedRegionInferno. Now I've talked before about Ivey's rules for the blogroll so if someone's on the list, I think there's something worth reading there. So imagine my delight when I checked the blog and found out that Aaron included lil' ol' me on his list of the Sexiest Blogs of 2010.

Now that's all well and good for me (God knows I love a good ego stroke!) but more importantly I just found a whole bunch of folks who will be showing up on Ivey blogroll soon! Two in particular stand out for the moment, if only because I've haven't had time to read them all yet. Dick-n-Jane and Ginger and the Professor. There are also a few others that I didn't click with and that's okay; I don't feel bad because I don't feel a need to check out every book at the library either. But, from what I've read, these two will be on the blogroll pretty darn soon. I enjoy his/her perspectives but I also dig strong writing. These folks are pretty cool

There was also one that I used to read but had, oddly, dropped off my radar. Champagne and Benzedrine. I dig this chap. He's opinionated and a shoot from the hip kind of guy, but damn he writes some thought provoking stuff.

Aaron and his partner Miranda have another blog -- The Swinger's Attic -- an advice and information blog for the non-monogamists. It covers swinging, polyamory, and other interesting topics. Not only do I recommend checking it out but I've decided to steal a phrase Miranda used since it's so like Vince and I. She said "My husband and I always joke saying I’m the gas and he’s the brakes and together we’re able to travel safely." That may be why I dig them so much; Vince and I can totally relate to that statement!

Have a great weekend everyone!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

HNT -- Presents under the tree

Happy Half-Nekkid Thursday, one and all!

I don't know about all of you, but I'm a fan of wrapping presents. I love for things to match, to be part of an overall theme, but most importantly I love wrapping gifts in such a way that it shows the person that I care. Special papers and bows, neat corners, notes on the gift tags -- I dig it all.

This week's HNT theme was "Christmas tree" and Os, I hope you can see mine well enough for this one to count. I apologize for being in the way!

The rest of you, don't forget to stop by Osbasso's for the rest of the half-nekkid holiday spirit. :)
I'll see you all next week for the Three Wishes theme. I have no idea yet who'll be on my list!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

An Ivey Christmas Meme

I swiped this little list from my girl Minority Report. I usually don't do memes but I am totally in the Christmas spirit!

Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate? Why choose?! I'll put hot chocolate in eggnog, and eggnog in hot chocolate. However, that will increase the size of my ass faster than Santa slidin' down a chimney. Therefore, I usually only drink eggnog once or twice the entire Christmas season and I spice it up with a little rum. Hot chocolate is an all winter treat so I don't go out of my way to have it during the Holidays.

Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree? I assume this is actually a question for people with kids but since I don't have any, I'll use my own childhood. Santa pretty much wrapped any present that was wrappable. He didn't wrap the saddle or the pony. That would've been cruel.

Colored lights on tree/house or white? Once again, I'm a both kinda gal. In the formal areas of my house I'm all about the white lights with silver and gold decorations. (My guess is y'all will get a glimpse of that this coming HNT.) But I also do a tree in our den where we put all the ornaments we collect on our travels as well as the goofier ones (I've got the coolest red guitar ornament that reminds me of Vince!) and that tree gets colored lights.

Do you hang mistletoe? Good lord, no. I remember pretty much the most obnoxious Christmas behaviors always seem to involve booze and mistletoe so I try to manage risk by cutting the greenery (since the booze ain't goin' nowhere.)

When do you put your decorations up? As soon after Thanksgiving as I can, but usually the first or second weekend in December. I used to wait until mid-December. See, I was one of those sad little kids who didn't get to have birthday parties or birthday gifts because "we'll get ya somethin' extra nice for Christmas" so I insisted on waiting until after my birthday before moving on to celebrating the birth of the baby Jesus. Anywhoo, I finally realized this is a stupid thing to do. I love decorating, I love Christmas, I love trees and baking and lights and music and all of that. Putting it off just denied me the extra wonderfulness!

What is your favorite holiday dish? I don't think I have a favorite holiday dish because we don't have any special holiday foods.

Favorite Holiday memory as a child? It's really kind of a group memory. I grew up with a huge extended family of aunts, uncles, grandparents, great grandparents, great aunts and uncles, 1st, 2nd, and 3rd cousins, etc. etc. Every year we had our family Christmas party at someone's house (it changed every year) and we'd all get together for a huge dinner and to exchange presents. We didn't have any sense either. We didn't draw names or anything, you gave presents to everyone. Of course, no one had any money so we often made our presents. I romanticize it now, there were actually lots of things happening that weren't so magical or special, but as a child I didn't know about any of the not-so-good, so the memories are pure gold.

When and how did you learn the truth about Santa? On year my mother turned to me and said, you're too old to believe in Santa, right? I just nodded my head even though I found this a bit hard to believe. I know I was either 6 or 7 because we still lived in the trailer.

Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve? Again, going back to childhood, yes, the family presents but they wasn't necessarily on Christmas eve. Sometimes the party was a few days earlier. We always opened "regular" presents on Christmas day. Now, Vince and I exchange our own presents on Christmas morning and everyone else whenever we see them.

Snow! Love it or Dread it? You're talking to a Florida native here, folks. I didn't even SEE snow for the first time until I was 18. Personally, I'm torn. I love the look of fresh snow BUT I HATE to be cold and I'm not a fan of the trouble that snow brings like shoveling sidewalks and scraping ice off the windshield.

Can you ice skate? Again, see above. Not a lot of ice skating opportunities growing up here.

Do you remember your favorite gift? Boy do I ever! And yes, this is a walking talking cliche, but I got a pony when I was ten years old. I will never, ever forget waking up that morning, seeing the saddle under the tree and suddenly putting two and two together as I ran outside screaming. I had the most beautiful black pony with a white star any little girl could ever imagine. She and I went on to win a few dressage tournaments.

What’s the most important thing about the Holidays for you? The spirit of love, joy, and compassion. Ah, you're going to get me all misty here. Sadly, we don't get much of that around here.

What is your favorite Holiday Dessert? It's not really a dessert but I could seriously drink eggnog until I exploded. I just love the thick, sweet, creamy goodness of it, and it's really only available this time of year.

What is your favorite holiday tradition? Sigh. Vince and I don't have any. We both have pretty territorial families and most every year he and I spend it trying to keep every one else happy by running all over God's green acre trying to make sure they get to have all of THEIR traditions met. Maybe that is our tradition?

Which do you prefer giving or receiving? Giving, giving, giving! But I have to admit I like giving things to either people who don't know I'm giving them something (I always find a family, preferably one with kids, that I buy gifts for) or people who appreciate gifts. See, I think you should give someone a gift that means something coming from you, that says something about the person or your relationship with them. If someone hands me a "gimme list" that just sucks the fuckin' joy out of it. If you just want money, fuckin' say so. I'll give you that pretty much any time of the year. But let me enjoy searching for the right thing, seeing that little item and having that "aha! so-and-so would love this" moment. Otherwise I'm just your money mule. As for receiving, same thing. I love getting something that really shows the person knows me. If they don't know me well enough to be willing or able to know what I'd like, the seriously, I don't want anything from that person.

What is your favorite Christmas Song? I have two: Little Drummer Boy and Oh Holy Night. Little Drummer Boy is probably the favorite Christmas song of every musician, actor, and artist I know. (I'm getting weepy just typing this.) It's about giving all that you have, your talents, gifts, and abilities, to honor someone. Oh Holy Night is just the prettiest song I've ever heard.

Candy Canes: Yuck or Yum? Yummy. Though I don't eat them very often.

Favorite Christmas Show? If you mean a movie, sorry MR, but "It's a Wonderful Life." I love Jimmy Stewart. And the hapless Clarence still makes me giggle. If you mean something else then it's the Christmas show at Epcot. Every year at Epcot, they have a symphony, a bunch of choirs, and a celebrity guest who reads the Christmas story. The show takes place on the lake, across from the American Pavilion. It is magical. Nobody does Christmas like Disney. Nobody.

Saddest Christmas Song? "I'll be home for Christmas." Most folks don't realize it, but it's a war song that's delivered from the point of view of a soldier who ISN'T going to be home for Christmas; the very last line of the song is "I'll be home for Christmas.... if only in my dreams." But it also makes me think of what I wish our Christmas experience was like -- filled with warmth and humor and joy and generosity -- as opposed to what it is really like -- an ongoing tug of war and battle of wills in which Vince and I are the constant losers. It's true, I love Christmas, but there really isn't a damn good reason to.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Vanilla with a touch of cinnamon on top

It seems that we've stumbled upon a theme this past week-- friendship! A week ago my sexy blogger friend Hubman came to town and hung out with me and Vince. That same week a couple of real-life crossover friends (Yikes!) joined the three of us for dinner. Two days after that, we enjoyed a few days hanging out with an FWB couple. And night before last, my uber-best real-life friend came over for an evening of chit chat, chuckles, and charm.

Let me tell you a bit about her as well as our larger circle of friends. First of all, I'll call her Claire since that's sooooo much more elegant than repeating "my friend" a gazillion times in a post. Claire is quite possibly the most intellectually and spiritually gifted person I've ever met. She is a college professor, writer, artist, actress, organizer, and overall good egg. When I'm with her I feel smarter, better, more generous, more witty, and pretty much better about the totality of the life and the universe. And none of that is my doing, by the way. It is merely reflected light.

When Vince and I had our struggles as we were starting down this path it was her I'd call, even though I couldn't tell her exactly what the problem was. She intuited it as relationship "growth" and as always, returned wise counsel along with a whopping dose of humor. But she doesn't pry. We don't "share", we just, well, talk to each other like people!

She and I have known each other for about 20 years and been friends for about 18, close friends for the last 10 or so. We have much in common; we're both Florida Crackers with similarly challenging family histories, both love the arts and literature though she can actually quote both Yeats and Plato in casual conversation and I have to plan in advance. She's also had quite the adventurous journey that's included lesbian lovers, "torrid" sexual adventures, passionate love affairs, one disastrous marriage and one that is the envy of all of see it. She's just totally awesome! If I ever needed anyone to help me bury a body, she's who I'd ask. (Thanks for the tip Emmy!)

If there was anyone, and I mean ANYONE, who I could talk to about our adventures it would be Claire. Not only would she not judge, she would be totally discreet, and offer sound advice.

But I don't, and I won't, tell her about Ivey Lane because the secret would be a burden (on her) and an unknown (for Vince). We share a pretty cool circle of friends of artists, musicians, actors, directors, etc. And within the close circle of about 5 or 6 of us I think they too would not judge or at least, not condemn Vince or I. But if it went beyond that little group (and artists can be a gossipy bunch!) it would become a delicious tidbit of salacious gossip and my private, quiet, fabulous Vincent would lose his peace of mind. I can't do that to him. In addition, Claire would now be sitting on a bit of information that she couldn't casually throw into another conversation; I can't do that to her.

So Claire is my "vanilla" friend with a spoonful of cinnamon on top. She's no clown; I'm sure she suspect something but as long as Vince and I are happy she will neither pry nor push. I hinted in a comment on Minority Report's blog one of the reasons I don't have many women friends. Claire is a perfect example of a non-traditional woman, like me. Love, love, love her!

And tonight, our friends who joined us for dinner with Hubman are coming over again. It's not a "date" but I have to tell you it is nice having people around with whom you can talk freely, laugh, and joke. But it's not enough for anyone -- vanilla or lifestyle -- to just be "sex-ay!" We realize it's a high bar to set, but our "friends" have to be like Claire, and our FWB couple, and our other spicy vanilla friends. What we've come to understand about ourselves is we're not in this just to fuck. You've got to bring SOMETHING ELSE to the table as well. You've got to truly be a friend.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

And now... friends WITH benefits

It's amazing the changes that can take place over a few days. When we last left the intrepid Ivey and Vince, Ivey was waxing sincerely sentimental about the delights of friendship. And it's true, there's nothing like it. But I was also boring myself (and probably my dear readers) silly with my constant whining. So move forward a few days -- to Sunday night to be precise -- and our friends from this post also came to town.

For a variety of reasons, I can't go into the details but we have a LOT in common with this couple. They stayed with us for a few days and we shared a lot of laughs, swapped some stories, had a few drinks, spent a few hours riding roller coasters, enjoyed an hour or so on a nature walk, and one evening of super sexy fun.

Did I mention this couple is SEXY?

The fact that they're young and attractive is actually the least of their virtues; they're also smart, involved, adventurous, sweet, generous, talented, and creative. And that, m'friends, is the key. The "benefits" of the last couple of days were awesome (I do have a jones now for boobies and I have to say, this gal RUINS me!) but if we'd just hung out, I swear I wouldn't have regretted a minute of our shared time together, just as I didn't regret a minute of time with Hubman and my other friends. That said, I think the shared experience just took a great thing and made it better. And it was good for all of us.

One of the conversations we had was that if the friendship is genuine, if the shared perspective is real and easy, then the sexual aspect doesn't threaten the relationship -- not the friendship, not the marriages. It's not like when you're single and dating and looking for some time of long-term romantic relationship; you already have that. The sexual play is just that -- play. And like kids on a playground the four of us had a fun-filled few days.

It looks like we may have an opportunity to see these folks again later in the Spring. But if we do or not, it's nice having people who we can share this part of ourselves with. It's relaxing, easy.

With or without benefits, good friends are just fuckin' awesome!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Friends.... with or without benefits

So the secret is out -- yours truly was at the wheel when my delightful friend snapped this photo. That's right, I've had the recent pleasure to finally meet the famous Hubman face to face. In addition, Hubman got to meet the mysterious and elusive Vincent Lane. The three of us had dinner together Sunday evening, then last night (Tuesday), Hubman and I had dinner alone while Vince decided to stay home. It was fun to finally get to hang with the guy who rocks Veronica's world; who, together with his partner, made a decision to live a more open, generous, and adventurous life.

I got to hang out with "teh Hub-ster" not once, not twice, but three times over the five days he was in town. The third time was a total surprise in more ways than one. On Sunday evening Vince and I met H and we all went to dinner. On Tuesday evening, it was just me and H. Then, on Thursday, things got nuts. I recently reconnected with a real-life childhood friend. To make a long story short, she and her husband have been considering swinging and it came up in conversation (don't ask) and I told her about me and Vince and (GASP!) about Ivey Lane. So through a strange and very fast series of phone calls we decided to host dinner at our house for the five of us, primarily so my friends to pick Hubman's brain, we could share stories and experiences, and generally have an open and frank discussion without worrying that the waiter was going into shock. And at one point we even had Veronica joining in via iPhone.

Interestingly, at no time did anyone get naked, though if I'm honest I have no idea what Veronica was wearing while we were on the phone. That's right, no sex.

Let me back up a bit and give you a little backstory. Almost 2 years ago now, back when we started exploring the idea of swinging, I scoured the web for information, blogs, forums, ANYTHING for a little guidance. I discovered Hubman and Veronica's blogs through Figleaf and found something that seemed promising -- real people who seemed to have complete lives that happened to contain this other, more unusual, element. I had another (vanilla) blog at the time and commented, asked questions, and got thoughtful replies in return.

So when I started Ivey Lane, guess who was my first follower and commenter? You got it -- Hubman. From the beginning, he's known my real name as well as lots of daily life information. Over time our correspondence included emails, at first more Q&A but also took on a sexier, flirtier tone. As Vince and I became more comfortable with my cyber-flirtations, H & I exchanged a few naughty as well as nice pictures (I was also doing Proj365) and eventually we added phone calls as well. The conversations often included a little sexy/flirty but ALWAYS included a few laughs and general life chit chat.

We were evolving into friends.

Now it's no secret, certainly not to Vince or Hubman, that there's more than a little sexual tension between me and H. Oh yeah, the thought of doing naughty things with that boy definitely pumps my tires, so to speak. More importantly, the thought of sex with both Vince (the love of my life) and Hubman (my sexy, open-minded friend) at the same time can send me into fits of daydream ecstasy. Toss in a vision of Veronica in the mix and oh-holy-hell; my imagination just fuckin' soars!

So when I found out he was coming to town, I was thrilled.... and concerned. Because contrary to what the general population may think, an exploration of swinging isn't a sexual free-for-all and in fact, brings with it even greater obligations for self-control, communication, and restraint.

You see, Ivey doesn't always get what Ivey wants. What Vince wants -- or doesn't -- matters as well, and in some very important ways, it matters more. And this is both a very good, and sometimes a very challenging, thing.

It's more than the sex, by the way. If you've been reading for a while you know that we've swapped once with one other couple, been on numerous "dates", visited a swinger club, gone to meet-n-greets, and recently attended a swingin' swap-party fuck-fest. You also know that Vince had a serious meltdown a few months ago, one that we've recovered from but for a while our relationship was in serious jeopardy.

The crux of the conflict isn't merely sexual openness, though that is the catalyst -- it involves two radically different approaches to life and experience.

As we discussed Hubman's imminent arrival, the question naturally arose "well, is this going to get naked?" In my perfect world, I would've had a threesome experience with my Beloved and our trusted friend. In a less perfect but still sexually open world, I would have satisfied my curiosity about what it was like to have sex with this particular person and shared a fun activity, enjoying a "benefit" of a FWB. On the next level, I would be able to get to know spend face-to-face time with a friend, opening acknowledging the obvious attraction but stopping short of crossing from fantasy to reality -- in other words, tabling the benefit. The next, not so cool scenario would've been to miss the chance to meet, to hang out, to share laughter and exchange ideas, maybe learn somethin' new or debate something fun with a person I find interesting.

There's so much to tell here, way to much to be included in this little post. Things like how listening to Veronica as she shared her views on her husband having sex while traveling, the woman just exudes competence and confidence. Seeing and hearing the excitement from my friends as they navigate how to turn their fantasies into realities and have a little fun in the process. I sincerely hope they follow Hubman's advice ("It's fun!") and not get bogged down in too much "what if." I loved getting to see H's enthusiasm; he is definitely a guy who knows how to say YES to life. I appreciate how far Vince has come in the last 18 months and at the same time experience a growing sense of sadness with each experience that we choose to say "no" to.

A friend -- one without benefits -- told me that I have a tendency to "over think" things. That's not really true. I'm a pretty quick thinker, good evaluator, and have a significant amount of self-awareness and competence. I'm not wrestling with inner angst or indecision. I'm not limiting my interactions because I don't know what the course of action should be, what the best answer is. No -- it's sales, persuasion (pushiness?), coaxing, and convincing not myself, but others.

I hope you enjoyed your visit to Ivey Lane, Hubman, and your "behind the blinds peek" into what I'm REALLY like! With or without benefits, I enjoy being your friend.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

HNT -- Gratitude

Happy Thanksgiving and Happy Half-nekkid Thursday to boot! It's getting busy around here so I'm posting a bit early and keeping it brief.

I'm not a "grateful for" kinda gal; I'm a "grateful to" woman.

I'm grateful to Vincent for sharing this wacky journey with me, for rolling with the crazy and laughing with me (almost) the entire way. I'm grateful to him for seeing me for who I really am, and for loving me anyway.

I'm grateful to my clients for (mostly) trusting in us and letting us earn the money that supports our lifestyle. I'm grateful to the people who work for us and make us look even better in the process.

I'm grateful to my parents and in-laws for doing what they did to make us who we started out to be. I'm grateful to friends who make me laugh and think and who mostly think I'm a pretty cool chick.

I'm grateful to the folks who make shopping pleasurable by being helpful and polite; I (almost) always return the favor. I'm grateful to the politicians and city/state leaders who made our local bike trail a reality and who had the foresight to put a Nature Preserve on the same path. I'm grateful to our local pub, club, and restaurant owners for running good businesses that thrive so that we have a cool place to hang out on a Friday or Saturday night.

I'm grateful to my Weightwatchers leader for having a sense of humor and not being a sanctimonious asshole.

I'm grateful to the people who blog and who share their stories and pictures; whether you know it or not, many of you have made my life better by offering up different perspectives. I'm grateful to those of you read my little ol' efforts, regardless of whether you're a lurker or a commenter. I'm grateful to those of you who do comment -- some of you make me, smile, make me laugh, and others give me something to think about, an alternate point of view. And those of you who've crossed the real-life line, I'm grateful to you for the trust you've placed in me.

I'm grateful to all of the people who make my little corner of the world a better place. I sincerely hope I do the same for you.

Happy HNT one and all. With all that's going on at Osbasso's, I don't know how he'll get it done this week, but if anyone can, he will. And I'm grateful to him for that. If you are too, go stop by and let him know.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Wacky world and other observations

So we went to the Stewart/Colbert Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear. The rally itself was great, but not because it was crowded (which it was) or because it was funny (oh yes, it was damn funny) or even because I agree completely with Stewart's primary point that rampant hostility, meaningless fear-mongering, and divisive, dishonest, and manipulative posturing by politicians and pundits is damaging to our national character (which fuck yes, I do!) but it was because I felt surrounded by people who are, for the most part, kinda like me.

About 230k - 250k of them. Give or take. But everywhere you looked you saw people who laugh at the same things and share a point of view that I happen to agree with. Man, it was awesome! And strangely, our foray into swinging is kind of the same way -- I'm only interested in people who laugh at the same things we do and who share our point of view when it comes to how we want to structure our swing-life. Folks at are, in fact, like us. More on that in a moment.

But first, a little more about our time in DC. We spent a few extra days there before and after the rally: Friday at the Library of Congress, Sunday on the National Mall. One of the first things to understand about me is that I'm seriously the kind of gal that can stand in front of a monument or in a historical area or in front of an amazing artifact and weep with emotion. You can only imagine what I was like wandering around our nation's capital. I stared in wide-eyed wonder at Thomas Jefferson's original 6300+ volumes that were used to replace the first collection of books that were destroyed by the British. Arranged in his original filing system (before the Dewey decimal) many were held by his hands. (NOTE -- another fire destroyed about a 3rd of the collection but they've been painstaking replaced.)

Knowledge. Wonder. Joy. Hope. Love. Lust. History. Error. Grace. Courage. Symbolism of larger and more important things than mere books and paper or marble and granite. And that was just in the fuckin' library. We pressed on to the White House, Washington Monument, WWII Memorial, Lincoln Memorial, Korean War Memorial, FDR Memorial, Jefferson Memorial.

I was so grateful to have Vince with me, a man who gets it and who shares my passion for such intangible things. Ladies and gents, we're nerds. We get off on history and art and culture. We dig knowledge and yes, we think ignorance -- or rather willful ignorance -- is ugly. Wanna makes us think you're sexy as hell, tell us something interesting that we don't know. You don't have to be a scholar or anything -- we're not -- but we're curious and appreciative of what lies behind the immediate and the obvious.

And this past Saturday night, we were ass deep in the the obvious but sure did learn a few new things. OUR FIRST SWINGER HOUSE-PARTY!

Let me start by saying we had a good time, met some cool people, and experienced a few new things -- I had my first massage that included a happy ending (wheeee) and that little orgasm was in full public view. (hehe) The hosts were great, especially the lady. Sexy, open, with -- IMHO -- the best body there though Vince has another gal in a tie for first.

We didn't decide on "no play" rules since we're not exactly unsure that we want to find couples to play with, but since we didn't know what to expect, essentially decided to take a watch and enjoy approach.

Every body-type was represented, and the people ranged from VERY physically and personally attractive to ohIdon'tthinksoyourekindacreepystayawayfromme kinda folks.

But it was far from what I'd expected -- a "normal" party just more amped-up with sex happening upstairs. From the moment we walked in I was felt up, groped, and grabbed. Strangely, not in an obnoxious way, but apparently that's just how you say hello. Like I said, learned a lot of new things.

"Ooooohh, Hi Ivey! Vince" I'm wrapped in an embrace and somehow three hands grab my ass, "We're soooo glad you're here!" And the hostess leans down to kiss my cleavage as her hands rub my nipples. Well helloooooo!

As we set down our beer and goodies in the kitchen I feel various squeezes and slides with every introduction. "Ivey, this is Bill." Pinch. "And his wife Sue." Grope. "Have you met Tim?" Lick.

Some folks are also HUGE on kissing. "Hi" as they came toward with a full tongue kiss. I quickly learn to move in for a full body-hug grope thus avoiding any unwelcome kisses.

And it's okay, we're rollin' with it, but it's pretty quickly becoming clear we're newbies and folks back off a bit. Then, in a very short amount of time, we're buck-nekkid in the pool and chatting with some lovely ladies. As other newbie couples arrived they'd get the same hello but would all, pretty much to a person, respond full on with a kiss and within moments be sucking, fingering, and generally fucking. At one point very early in the evening the hostess comes to the pool and we watch as she bends over, sucks one man to rock hardness, then as another starts playing with her pussy she lays down on the pool deck, raises her legs and has a wonderful, kitty-licked orgasm right there as someone stands up and says "who needs another drink?"

Wow. Just wow.

Later, Vince and I decide to take advantage of one of the upstairs rooms for ourselves and had a good time -- I had my first O of the evening -- though we learned later that locking the door just makes people more curious.

There wasn't really any pressure to "do anything" other than some good natured ribbing by the host -- who was a fucking machine! -- that we should "let up and live a little." The ladies we were sitting with us laughed and said don't worry about it.

As it turned out, our car was blocked in so we couldn't have left early unless we made a scene and since we were comfortable, if not actively participating really, we decided to just hang out and see how the night went.

And it went well -- no nerves, no real discomfort that wasn't easily dealt with, met some really great people and one or two couples we hope to see again, either on a date or simply at another event.

There were a few things though, that gave us pause:

We observed that, in the pool area at least, "safer" sex wasn't really anyone's concern. Fingers, mouths, and tongues seemed to go from one person to the next with no hesitation. That's not really our style as we would need to at least have a discussion with someone before anything went anywhere.

There were one or two guys that I found flat-out creepy. One fellow in particular decided to watch as another woman was getting her happy massage BUT he practically propped his elbows between her ankles, cupped his chin in his hands, with a vapid and slightly stupid look on his face as he stared straight up into her pussy while the masseuse was knuckles deep in and making her squirm in ecstasy. The guy wasn't her boyfriend, he was the boyfriend of another woman at the party, and that just seemed a bit intrusive to me. Then again, maybe I'm just a bit of a snob.

And for both Vince and I the idea of immediate sexual interaction with a complete stranger was a turnoff. Maybe it's just us, but we kinda need to know if we like you BEFORE we can even think about whether or not we want to fuck you. Seriously, we're just square like that.

One of the oddest things about the party was that the game was on and there was a group of (mostly) guys, wrapped in their towels, just hanging around the TV while there was literally available pussy everywhere. Maybe these guys had been in the lifestyle awhile or maybe they were all just taking a breather but seriously? A football game?! Are you serious?!?!

While we were waiting for my turn at the massage table, Vince struck up a conversation with the Mr. Massage, who took turns with his wife giving the massages. It was a pretty cool conversation as the guy's former job involved working closely dogs. My turn comes up, I jump up on the table, Vince and Mr. M keep chatting as my massage gets marvelously personal. And I loved it. On one level the surealness of it made me giggle at first but on another it was Vince being the Vince I know -- the guy who can find out the most interesting things about people with absolutely no effort.

As my massage got more personal, I'd vaguely hear him say to Mr. Massage, "See that smile? You're in the right spot." Or "See her bite her lip like that? That's a good sign." If I hadn't been on the edge of orgasm, I would've laughed out loud.

All in all, it was a fun night though I don't think it was how we're going to end up running our swinging adventure. If we decided to go to another party with these folks (and we probably will) we'll go with a couple where perhaps we've met before and maybe one of us has more chemistry than the other but we like the couple. Or maybe go with a couple we already know and play with and we play only with them but enjoy the sexual energy of the event. Who knows?

But the best thing about the night was that Vince and I enjoyed it together, because in the end, that's all that really matters.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

HNT -- A room with a view

Happy Half-Nekkid-Thursday, friends and neighbors!

Ahhhhh!!!! So Vince and I finally arrived back home from our road trip but we didn't forget about our HNT responsibilities. (Hehe.)

We took a couple of days after our trek to Washington, DC (I'll post about THAT on Friday) to head to the mountains and visit some friends who recently moved to that part of the world. So recently, in fact, they still don't have drapes on their windows.

While I was getting ready to take a shower, Vince was checking out the view from the deck.
But seriously though, the view WAS stunning. I'm a Florida girl, and to see the season's change in such a bold way is truly a rare treat. I've been giddy for a week!

Happy HNT everyone! Don't forget to check out the rest of the views over at Osbasso's.


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

HNT -- One for the ladies

Well ladies, as promised, here he is -- Vincent.

You're welcome.

Forty-six sexy years old and still rockin' my world every damn day! Lucky, lucky me. ;)

Happy Half-Nekkid-Thursday y'all, and don't forget to make the rest of the rounds at Osbasso's place!

Oh, and posting will continue to be sporadic for another week or so. Vince and I decided to head to DC to check out the Jon Stewart/Stephen Colbert Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear. Gonna be an adventure!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

A heck of an anniversary!

Once again, Ivey gets all "yeah, yeah, I been busy, traveling, happy, pissy, whiny (and damn I hate being whiny), sorry haven't posted in a while" blah, blah, blah. Truth is, I have in fact, been all of those things. I had actually planned to write a wonderful post yesterday about how much I love Vince. Sunday was our 12th anniversary and we've essentially been celebrating for a week! Whew! But alas, life got in the way in good and bad ways.

So in no particular order, here are a few highlights and lowlights of the last 6 or so days:

1) We had a hell of a celebratory anniversary dinner -- last Wednesday. It's a complicated story that involves screwed up dates, "forgotten" plans, a minor and well-deserved emotional break-down (not me or Vince), multiple restaurant reservations, and ultimately a great dinner with some fantastic friends at an awesome restaurant and at least 4 bottles of very, VERY good wine.

2) Part of the screwed up dinner plans involve Vince booking a two-night gig in Tampa. As part of the screw-up fix-up the band ended up springing for a hotel room for us. (FYI -- we took a few HNT photos at the hotel. I'm thinking this Thursday is going to be a treat for the ladies!) It was the usual sexy dancing, groupie, have (more than a few) glasses of wine and dance, dance, dance event.

On a little side note our "play-dar" was in overdrive. When this band plays out people are constantly buying drinks for the band. When this one couple realized it was our anniversary the asked Vince to bring me over so they could meet me and buy me a drink too. They were funny, hawt, and if they weren't swingers I'll eat my hat. She was hysterical and wonderfully sexy. From the stage Vince was watching her and her friend shimmy their boobs when the songs called for it and he was seriously hoping one or two would fall out. Later, as I was flirting with them both and giving them our email address I complimented her lovely globes and told them about Vince's view. At that point the Mr. reached over and took one out to show me and OMG it was lovely and it was a good thing I'd only had three glasses of wine or I would have .......... really, I think I would've.

So what do y'all think? Swingers? Anyway, I hope they contact us.

3) During the day on Saturday we decided to get our nerd on and headed over to a museum. We discovered a terrific car show happening so strolled around there before checking out the exhibits. This place also had an IMAX theatre and let me tell ya something people, if you have the chance to see the Hubble Telescope IMAX movie do yourself a favor and go. Billions of stars in billions of galaxies and we are just one tiny planet circling one minor star. I love the sensation of being awestruck and I was. I think at one point I got teary with the beauty of it all!

Part of the story was about finally being able to see how stars are born and it was amazing; a cosmic nursery for energy, light, and power and within all of it are the fundamental building blocks of life.

A few hours later we get a text from a close friend of mine whose son was born at 4:01 that afternoon. My nickname for his girlfriend is "the Sun" because she truly personifies life-giving warmth and goodness.

4) We spent Sunday, our actual anniversary, at the appropriately named "Honeymoon Beach." As we walked to the beach we noticed they were setting up for a wedding on the beach later that day. I sincerely hope that bride and groom are as happy as we are twelve years later. We laugh every day. We are almost constantly in one another's presence. We have fun, funny, and wild sex an average of 5 or 6 times a week. We work together, we play together, we are in it to win it together. I've started referring to us as "mostly monogamous" since we are ready and willing to have sex with other people as soon as we can find some suitably sexy-to-us partners. LOL

5) We finally got home and yesterday morning resumed our normal routine which includes our morning bike ride. As we pedaled past my neighbor's house I mentioned that I needed to call and see about going over for a visit. This neighbor has cancer and is currently under hospice care at home. He tried chemo (twice) and it didn't work. I liked to go and hang out with him as much as I could and as much as he was up for. During the chemo months he didn't want to eat much so I made him my best, richest, and highest calorie deserts to take to his house; a bold choice as his beautiful wife of thirty-three years is largely considered the best cook in the neighborhood. We'd just hang out and I'd be as completely inappropriate as possible -- wicked! He loved it! I always wore shorts and a tank top, made sure my make-up was on, and that I looked good. Considering our considerable age difference, religious difference (he is and I'm not), and his poor health, many folks would have frowned on our boob jokes and the stories I'd tell him of our motorcycle treks, business trips, Vince's band adventures and my delighted approval. But he laughed and laughed.

On our bike ride back, when I was planning to call and find out when I could come over, we both got texts telling us that he'd died the previous day, on our anniversary. While we were celebrating our twelve years together and watching another couple launch theirs, his and his beloved wife's thirty-three had come to an end.

So over the past few days a new baby boy joined this life while and old, sick, and very tired man left it. Vince and I celebrated -- with a few good friends -- what we have together, with our minds open to possibilities with new friends and bolder adventures on the horizon. I hope some of those adventures will include some nekkid sexy fun, but all of them I'm sure will be together, and filled with laughter.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

HNT -- Hot legs

Greetings Happy HNT-ers! Before the goodies, a few Ivey facts:
  1. Everyone should have some aspect of their body that they're happy with; in my case, it's my legs. My weight can fluctuate like nobody's business but these gams never let me down.
  2. Vince and I are lucky enough to live in an old house with a fireplace in our bedroom. I mentioned a few posts back that after eleven years we finally installed gas logs.
  3. I needed boots for a halloween costume and found this delicious pair for $42! I'm going to call them "The Boots of Naughtiness!" (FYI -- credit for the awesome term goes to Another Suburban Mom.)

I think this should heat things up in the bedroom.

Don't forget to check out Os for the rest of the Half-Nekkid fun!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Fucking frustration

God, this is fucking frustrating. Seriously. How freakin' hard can it be to be a fuckin' swinger, I swear to god I want to throw in the mutha-fuckin' towel!!

I was just IMing with Rick, the husband of the first couple we ever met in swingdom. (I wrote about that experience in my first two blog posts.) A few months ago we reconnected, Vince thought Leah was cute and funny, we all seemed to have a good time, and since then..... nothing, nada, niente. We've invited them out but they're never available. I even asked if they weren't interested and just wanted us (me) to leave them alone and Rick said no, they'd love to get together just "been busy." He IM'd Vince once and it was when Vince was literally walking out the door to band practice. But on this IM there was no flirting, no funny banter, nothing. Even after I did everything up to and including say "hey, I'm trying to flirt here". His response? "Gotta go. House projects. I'll let you know when we're out your way."

Okay, it doesn't take a brick wall to fall on my head. Apparently any heavy wall will do. No more invites, emails, or IMs to Rick and Leah.

And we'd finally written off A&J. After a flurry of texts from J (the husband) asking for nothing but pics, and a few benign emails between Vince and A, we didn't hear from them for weeks. Then Saturday, while I'm at my parents house, a text from J out of the blue. I tell him I can't text right then but will catch up with him Sunday.

Sunday comes, I text him. More nothingness. "Hey. Been busy. What'cha doin'?" I get a little more specific and he tells me they haven't been meeting any lifestyle folks because, well, A's "more reserved." I ask what that means and he says "she's picky.... and that's just fine." Well yeah, asshole, it's fucking fine but don't string people along! Do they want to get together or not?! Apparently not. Fine. No more invites to A&J.

The red flags from the A&K finally flamed out and they are out of the picture.

I think if we sent B&J a text saying we'd meet them at the Motel 6 they'd be in but Vince only got to meet J for about 5 minutes and seriously, why is it unreasonable for him to want to get to know a woman just A LITTLE FUCKIN' BETTER before he decides if we wants to fuck her?!

So B&J, off the list.

We've sent out more emails but very few responses. We've gone to parties and meet and greets where we meet no one and sure as hell don't party. Just about the time I'm sure we're socially inept douchebags someone from our vanilla world will tell us how we throw the best parties, they love us, we are fun, funny, "out there", great to hang out with, always awesome, or some such wonderful praise to make me think that truly, maybe it really isn't us. Maybe, it really is "them."


Maybe we just don't fit with these people. Maybe we really are that fuckin' unique in all the fuckin' world. Maybe are standards are too high. Or too weird. Or too obnoxious.

Maybe we truly only can be friends/lovers/adventurers with each other.

Maybe I am too fat to be attractive to the men and women we meet. Maybe Vince is too reserved or too picky.

Maybe we both have Asperger's Syndrome and can't pick up on social signals.

Maybe we're just not cut out for this.


Okay, rant over. I'm going to go check a few more profiles and see what does -- or doesn't -- happen next. Honestly people, I didn't start pursing this to add to the sense of constant frustration and rejection I seem to live with.

I really didn't.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

HNT -- Stark, dirty, pretty

Happy HNT one and all!

Sometimes, you just got to let the other guy make the call. In this case, I give you a Vince's vision HNT!

Coming up with new ideas, working together as a team, can sometimes be.... well.... let's just say, less than conducive to domestic harmony. Especially when one member of the team has body image issues ("Delete that. Too much fat.") and the other is having technical issues ("How the fuck do you change the exposure on this fuckin' thing?!") That's when you just give in and let one person have the creative edge; do as your told, trust, and see what happens.

Personally, I think it came out pretty darn cool. Vince says "It's stark, dirty, and pretty all at once." I agree.

Don't forget to check out the rest of the HNT coolness over at Osbasso's place.

See ya!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Weekend wrap up (starting with Thursday!)

Wayyyyyy too much going on these days, both in my head and in my (work/blog/lifestyle/regular) life. For the most part, it's been great, but also funny, sad, irritating, surreal, and everything in between. Here's a few highlights, starting with Thursday.
THURSDAY -- After 15 years together, Vince and I finally got around to buying some bedroom furniture. Now it's not like we've been living out of boxes all this time, but it's been a collection of scavenged hand-me-downs and college dorm leftovers that did the trick but had no "style." And I'm a style kinda gal! I may have mentioned in a meme before that my other dream career would be interior decorator.

So Thursday we head out to the stores and buy a chest of drawers and table AND since I found what I wanted at IKEA, we had enough money left in the budget to add something I've wanted for years -- gas fireplace logs! Wheeeeee!!!!! We're waiting for the burner to come in but as soon as it is I'll post a photo.

The funny thing is though, while we were in IKEA debating the merits of this chest over that one, Vince gets a text from K, the Mrs. of K&A, the red flag couple I mentioned in my last post that told Vince she could send him sexy photos but only if they kept it from her husband, A. Well, guess what folks? The text she sent essentially said "Vince, don't text me anymore. A and I are splitting up and I'm moving out of the area." BIG surprise, right?! Sheesh!

Then came the sad news, my best friend's father passed away. It wasn't unexpected, in fact it was welcomed, but never-the-less. When one loses a parent, no matter how difficult they are/were, no matter how old you are, no matter if the relationship was difficult or smooth, the world is different. She's also a southern gal like me and we can not image a world without Daddy in it.

FRIDAY -- We spent Friday assembling the furniture (the price you pay for inexpensive!) and moving furniture around. One thing to know about my house is that it's two story and the stairwell is kinda odd -- it twists and turns -- so carrying the old stuff down and the new stuff up takes more time than you think it should.

That was also the day my parents returned to pick up their delightful dog, Harley, and I'm pleased to say we got her back home in the same shape she got her in -- spoiled rotten. But the sad part of the evening was my parents. I love them madly, but my mother can see the cloud on any silver lining. Asking something like "how was your trip?" turns into an hours long litany of every idiot they encountered, inconvenience they endured, stupidity foisted upon them, and since it rained the entire trip, a Weather Channel wrap up of rain totals. It's exhausting.

That evening was the kick off to our little town's annual Music Festival. So we went downtown (a couple of blocks away) on the motorcycle, drank a little wine, heard a few great bands, ran into a few friends, then came home to a sweet slumber.

SATURDAY -- My redecorating quest continued! In addition to the furniture the room needed some new art and a few "finishing" touches so I took off that morning for a nice solo shopping trip. We'd found a cool painting of a nude at IKEA to hang over the fireplace and I'd had this little art project in mind for a while. If you look at the photo, you'll notice the black and white pictures framed on the wall. Look familiar? Yep! That's yours truly in some of our favorite HNT shots! We've decided that we want our bedroom to be our little love nest and if the cleaning lady is shocked well, fuck her. (Not really. She's a hard core conservative Christian but she's a nice gal.)

I think it turned out pretty cool!

Also, while I was out shopping, I stopped in at my favorite adult store to look for a new top. That night we were planning to go to a White Lace Swinger Party and well, I had nothing to wear. Since seeing Babe Lincoln and Vixen's awesome corsets I thought that's what I'd get. The thing is, I have told myself that's going to be my reward for losing 20ish pounds so I had a hard time pulling the trigger. In addition, I don't want a white one, I can't be trusted not to spill anything on it. Sad. But true. Vince always rolls his eyes when I come home from a shopping spree with white or pastel shirts.

But while in the store's dressing room, trying to get the damn thing laced, I get a text from a sexy blogger friend. Nothing sexy this time, just a little update on his and his wife's day, but it made me giggle in the store. ;) I didn't get the corset but did find a cute little lingerie number. In white. Let's hope I don't spill anything on it. Wheeee!!!!!

That evening we were back to the Music Fest, saw an AWESOME acapella group, had a nice dinner at our favorite Thai restaurant then took off to the party. We had fun but seriously folks, for any vanilla readers out there, if you think these are places of totally abandoned debauchery, sorry to disappoint. First, it was held in a vacant building. It was actually supposed to be in a nice club but got moved at the last minute. The new venue was clean but definitely a bit on the seedy side. There were stripper poles and good looking women enjoying them but for the most part the place had the vibe of a Jr. High dance. Lots of folks (couples, husbands, and single guys) hanging out on the edge of the dance floor watching scantily clad women do the Electric Slide.

We had a good time, talked to a few people but didn't run into anyone we knew, and neither of us are the "pick up someone in a bar" types. We weren't like that twenty years ago and we aren't like that now. In the future we'll still go, but probably only if there's someone else going that we've been chatting with on-line or if we see someone on the guest list and make an arrangement to meet them. Live and learn folks, live and learn!

SUNDAY -- One of Vince's bands played at the Music Fest as a last minute fill in after someone else dropped out. It was great! I walked down to the festival with my camera in hand and took a bunch of photos. After his set we hung out and drank beer with friends and we pretty much did that all afternoon. At one point, the band member who had Vince's guitars in his truck was taking off so we got a ride back to our house and then turned right around, hopped on our bicycles and rode back to town to continue our beer drinking and people watching at our favorite outdoor bar.

And while we were there, Vince starts chatting up the two lovely and hot sisters sitting at the table next to us. They were great! Vince had them laughing, the conversation was sexy and flirty, and I got to watch my baby does what he does best -- make people feel good. He's not a flashy guy however I swear I think we could have picked those two up! (But that may be just the fourth beer talking.) They invited me to join them next weekend at a Chippendale show!

We ended the day snuggled up in bed, in our sexy little bedroom, with a little sexy talk about what all we're going to do to each other as soon as my monthly friend gets the hell out of dodge. (Yeah, that's why there's been no talk about wild, wanton sex!) But this was the kind of weekend that makes up a great life and great memories. The weather was awesome, we got some things done, we had a little clean fun, a little naughty fun, saw a few friends, met some new people, listened to great music, performed some music, and on and on and on.

And tonight it keeps on going --- we have a few people coming over for a dinner party so I've got to get to the grocery store and get to cooking. The menu (and this is for Veronica LOL) Peach Balsamic grilled pork chops, wild rice, roasted vegetables and for dessert homemade apple pound cake (my grandmother's recipe) with cinnamon ice cream! Gotta run folks! Lots of memories to make!

Saturday, September 25, 2010


Before I get into the post proper I have to introduce you to my favorite distraction this week -- Harley!! This pampered, persistent, preening pooch is my parents dog and we're puppy-sitting this week while they are on vacation. She's a great dog and we -- being dog people without a dog right now -- love having her around. That said, my parents are beyond insane when it comes to how she's taken care of. We are the only people on the planet they'll entrust her to and even then it's with the caveat that we are barely acceptable and that they are sincerely hoping we'll rise above our usual level of incompetence to adequately carry out their detailed (and in some cases absurd) instructions. Seriously, my mother demonstrated how to cut up her hot dog treats before she left. Last time she left a diagram demonstrating how to hide a pill in the hot dog.

Anywhoo, demanding as she is, we like having Her Highness around.

But to the title: Disengaged. I've been feeling a bit disengaged from the blogosphere for a few weeks. Every day I cruise my favorite blogs and read your stories but I find that I have nothing of value to contribute; and since I'm one of those who tries to say nothing when I have nothing to say, there haven't been any comments on your posts. I've regressed into lurker. That sucks. Seriously. And I also noticed that I've started skipping a few blogs that held my interest before.

So being the over-analytical type that I am I've been pondering this phenomenon. The first thing I asked myself is "Is it just the blogs or is this a trend across interactions e.g. other 'vanilla' blogs, Facebook, swinger sites, email, real life?"

The first thing that was very clear was that it applied to my vanilla blogs as well -- mainly news and political sites. I just don't want to read them right now. And if I really want to lose faith in my fellow man in general I read the comments after pretty much ANY political article. I really feel as is I'm living in the land of Dumbfuckistan. And it's not just the vitriolic content of what people are saying -- I'm cool with disagreement and differing points of view -- but the complete and utter contempt people have for correct communication is killing me. I've said before, I'm a word nerd -- punctuation matters, spelling matters, capitalization matters. And that's just the bare minimum. Tenses matter, verb-noun agreement matters. Shit! I'm no grammar Nazi (though my editor for my pro-work definitely falls in that category and I'm grateful for her anal-retentive nature) but I just don't want to engage people who can't fuckin' string a fuckin' sentence together!

I next observed my ennui applied to Facebook. With the exception of Vince, I pretty much work alone so Facebook provides the "office chatter" that most people take for granted. The perky exchange of views, the joke shared in the hall, the idle chit-chat that forms a community or culture. And I keep a pretty clean Facebook presence and by that I mean that I don't "friend" or accept requests from every Tom, Dick, or Harriette that crosses my path. But lately it seems there's more inane crap than I can stand. Honestly, do you have to let the world know when you're going to the grocery store?

But I have been enjoying a few IM chats with some old friends who live farther away and with whom I've recently reconnected. No surprise, they are pretty much all men. But it's fun and flirty and delightful and they make me laugh. There are a few ladies -- very few -- but I've discovered they are more like me; almost masculine in our communication and debate/discussion styles. You rarely see "OMG this is just awful!" comments and instead have a list of observations and verifiable, or at least debatable, facts followed by a conclusion.

So yeah, I've been kind of stepping out of the FB world too.

The swinger sites are also boring me a bit these days. When we first started this journey I read forums, profiles, and enjoyed looking at the photos and info found there. These days I might check them every few days but only to check for mail. I've tired of the tire kickers. Of sending out emails without even the courtesy of a response. Of finally meeting people and having everything go great ("Hey you guys are awesome/just our type/let's get together soon/etc.) only to have the couple flake out or worse, get weird.

A&J have become beyond a disappointment. They're the ones we'd given up on because they would send "let's get together sometime" emails then every time we invited them somewhere were unavailable. Then we didn't hear from them. Then we did but it was J (the husband) sending me texts asking for pics. Constantly. Now Vince would like to have someone send him pics too but he's a little more reticent to just ask but has recently gotten over that. So he sent A an text and she responded but only with very plain texts. Still no invites or indication that they want to get together OTHER than J saying we should do it "sometime."

Then we met a couple that seemed pretty cool, K&A, but they had a few red flags. Now they were both sexy, funny and friendly but they aren't married and have only been together two years. Okay, we can deal with that and our date night with them was a ton of fun. No play, but we all had a great time. This time, Vince sent an email through the site telling them we had a great time, would like to get to know them better, and invited them to text us if they wanted. He also added that if she (K) was interested, he loved seeing sexy photos. She sent back a very nicely worded email that she and A had decided they didn't want to text or email with only one half of the couple and she was sure he'd understand because he's "cool like that."

No problem, we get that and it seemed to make good sense for a new couple who were finding their way.

The next fucking day he gets a text from her with a very sexy pussy shot and a note that basically says she'd love to share pics but they'd have to do it on the hush-hush. In other words, she was doing it behind A's back. Fuck. Vince let her know that as much as it pained him to turn her down, if A wasn't cool with it then he'd have to wait until A was. That's too big of a red flag for us, the idea that she's willing to deceive her partner and draw Vince into being a co-conspirator in her deception. So K&A are off the list too.

We went to great meet and greet but being the dumb (and in my case slightly drunk) asses that we are, we didn't get the contact info for the one couple we hit it off with. We sent a note to the hosts who said they passed on our info but haven't heard back and probably won't.

We had a great date this past week with an awesome couple -- K&M! Funny, sexy, smart! She's is a model (I kid you not) and he is photographer. Furthermore, she's a country girl (like me) and he's a city boy (like Vince.) And it gets better, he's from Long Island and has the personality to match! He and Vince got along like peas in a pod. On the downside -- they live about four hours away. The only reason we got to meet was because we were in their area on business. So we left it with "let us know when you're in town" and maybe, just maybe, we'll see them again.

Sigh. Vince and I sucked at dating when we were single and it appears we haven't improved with age. So yeah, true to long ago form, I find myself disengaging from the "dating scene" because I can't seem to make it work. Sigh again.

In vanilla life we're losing friends left and right. The neighbors we hung out with moved away; the couple that used to host our regular card game did the same. My best friend moved an hour away but even though we have no trouble driving that far she now finds herself in the miasma that is taking care of an aging and unwell parent. Another friend is preparing for the arrival of his first child and will soon, at the age of 45, find his lifestyle has changed forever. The last two are the ones who I've known for 18 or so years; the people with whom the conversations can go from deep to absurd to inappropriate to silly to supportive in a matter of seconds. I need them. Or rather, I want people like them in my life.

So for mostly positive reasons, our current social circle is disengaging from us.

The bright spot, at least for me, has been the personal phone calls and emails with my new and old friends, vanillas and swingers/bloggers. I think what I want now is more depth and less breadth. I want to know some of you better and that takes the sort of time and removal of barriers that reveals more of the inner being. I want to explore with a few people what lies beyond "friendly acquaintance" or sexual attraction or even simply shared interest to genuine connection. I want to know if what appears to be budding friendship can survive getting to know one another or if we are no more than a mutual audience for each other's somewhat narcissistic ramblings.

Maybe that is asking a bit too much of others? Perhaps it is beyond my capabilities? But either way I think that is the essence of my disengagement -- wanting less of the surface and more of the substance.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

HNT -- Behind Bars

FYI -- When I titled this post I was referring only to the effect in the photo. But now, after spending freakin' HOURS trying to get online an a high-end hotel where I'm currently staying for business I have to say I feel like I'm behind bars here too. All I have to say is any hotel that doesn't freakin' offer FREE wireless in the year 2010 does NOT get my money willingly! 'Nuf!!

Anyway, happy HNT my lovelies! I'm hours late but I hope you enjoy this fresh out of the shower view. ;)

And do make the rounds at Osbasso's for more half-nekkid loveliness!


Monday, September 13, 2010

Monday musings

I may have mentioned that the reason I haven't been writing a lot isn't because I have nothing to say. In fact, it's more like there is just too much. Observations, mental meanderings, wandering and random thoughts have been rolling around my noodle so I'm going to off-load a few.

Blogroll. You'll notice I added a few new folks to the blogroll so welcome GoodWill, Blue-eyed Bader, and Hands in My Pants! I've been reading you guys for a while but keep clicking through from other folks blogrolls and that can get to be a bit much. I'm pretty slow about adding new people and usually only do so after I've been reading someone for a while. Really, it's just a place for me to have easy access to their links. I'm not much of a "reciprocal" blogroller type.

Swinging. On the swinger front, Vince and I are back in the game, or at least we're trying to be. LOL We finally gave up on the most promising prospects (A&J) because they just keep flaking out on us and that gets tedious. But it's interesting that since our little dust up, Vince has turned a corner, an enjoyment/relaxation corner. There have also been a few very good blog posts recently by some of you guys that have been most helpful -- especially Sadie's recent post by her hubby. We're emailing with a few folks and have some we're trying to get together with so we'll see how it all goes.

Sex. OMG the sex has been just awesome around here. We're back to our daily grind (hehe) of once a day or so fuck-fest. That's the way I like it too. I'm not a girl who does well anymore without a regular rogering. But it is taking a toll on the furnishings. I was hanging some art over our bed and had to move it out. The picture is of the baseboard. It seems that our ahem, enthusiastic playtime is slamming the bed frame into the wall.... ah.... vigorously. I think I may need to do something about that.

Food. I love to cook! And I enjoy eating but as I mentioned last week I've rejoined WeightWatchers. Now talk of weight, especially my own, bores me stupid but I am having a ball with the recipes. One of my favorite desserts is Carrot Cake and this is their version and let me say people, it fucking rocks! I made this one from scratch and took part of it to a neighbor and the rest we took to dinner with some friends. Delish!

Distances. I really hate that some of you are so freakin' far away. Seriously. I'm so jealous of Hubman right now I can't stand it. California, Illinois, Massachusetts, Tennessee, Oregon, Texas and some of you I'm not sure where you are but I know it ain't Florida. Grrrrr!! I'd love to have lunch or grab a drink with a lot of you. Sure, the internet makes the world smaller in one way, but it's still a big, big world.

Blog life. Most of you don't know this but I had another vanilla blog before I started Ivey Lane and I haven't written a word in it since April. Some of those readers are now writing to me on FB and wanting me to start it again. The thing is my other blog isn't anonymous; and my family started reading it and taking it wayyyyyyy too seriously. Worse, they started chiming in with their opinions on my take on things -- which kinda sucks. I liked writing that blog but the freedom of writing for "strangers" is part of what I enjoy here.

I think we'll have something pulled together for HNT this week but in the meantime, I'll leave you with this shot. Every morning I bike by this place, sometimes I just hang out here for a little while too.