Setting priorities

The September Erotic Journal prompt is about priorities and how we set them. Brigit has used a great quote from Stephen Covey, someone I’ve long admired in my leadership readings.

The key is not to prioritise what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.

September is traditionally a time to rethink priorities in life. It’s the time school restarts and people return from summer holidays. The seasons are changing and thoughts turn to autumn and eventually the festive season. Maybe too, it is a time when we reassess our relationships and think about the things we need to do to improve them.

As I said in my last post about our mornings, my life is a little different right now. In the main we are in the business of shutting out the outside world. Of ignoring the ongoing covid catastrophe. But as they say, all things must come to an end and sadly this idealic situation will too.

The season here in France is changing too, but thankfully the weather cools more slowly and the evenings are lighter later. When we return home we will be forced to immerse into full blown autumn. Our biggest challenge will be to retain this good feeling and to continue to enjoy our rejuvenated sex life. For me I feel this is going to be important. The doom and gloom of life at home in the UK, of newly imposed restrictions on life will be quite a mood depressant. We will need to focus on ourselves and structure our days so we don’t get caught up in the gloom.

I’ve lost my way when it comes to health and fitness and that will be one of my first priorities. I’ll need to find online programmes / videos to help with the fitness element because of quarantine. But once I can get back to swimming I know that will lift my spirits. Updating my Food, Fitness and Health website regularly will be a big priority.

Work is likely to continue and is getting busier, so hopefully that will keep me occupied. But one thing I know is that I won’t let it over take my other activities. We can work up to 48 hours a week, but my days of doing that are over. 16-20 are sufficient.

I am also getting ready to make big changes to my MPB site. I plan for these to be completed by the end of October. A big challenge but one I am keen to fulfil. In addition I want to start to write more again. Having no wifi and being really busy over recent weeks has made this challenging. But once I’m back in my little office and surrounded by my things again I’ll be making it a priority.

So there you have it a schedule of my priorities which also links to the plans I reaffirmed recently.

To see who else is joining in with the September EJC click below.

In the morning

I have always been delighted at the prospect of a new day, a fresh try, one more start, with perhaps a bit of magic waiting somewhere behind the morning. 

~ J. B. Priestley

Morning sex wasn’t a thing for me in my former life. For one thing there wasn’t time, plus there was always a child or teenager around. But since Master and I got together and particularly since I moved in with him. Now it really is a thing, and just lately it has been most mornings.

Master loves his bed, for sleep and for sex. He seems to need one almost as much as the other. Of course sleep wins in terms of time and volume. But one thing is for sure, if he gets a good night sleep he wakes up pretty randy. I’ve written a few times about the fact he has a higher sex drive than me. But I’ve discovered that the more sex we have the more I want it too. It’s kind of addictive.

For the past months, with the world having gone to hell in a handcart, our sex life was infrequent. Still usually in the morning, but just not often. He didn’t feel like it much more than I did and that meant a pretty lean period. For many reasons coming away to France was the best thing we could have done. Warm (and often hot) weather, relaxing and chilled out days were a great antidote to the problems of home. That’s not to say that things aren’t pretty bad here, they are. But everyone in this small French commune is pretty sensible. We are choosing where to go and staying clear of crowded places as much as we can. Plus we don’t feel compelled to follow the news here.

We’ve had things to do in the house, but have paced ourselves. Having to decamp to rental property was a pain, but it also provided opportunities for sexy photos and joyful sex. Now we are back in our own place we’ve settled into something of a routine. I tend to wake earlier and check stuff on my phone. Once Master wakes with his morning glory it’s usually only a matter of time. He calls me a good fuck, which is great to hear. It’s also something I never expected anyone to be saying to me at the age of 58! One thing is for sure, that kind of affirmation spurs you on even if you didn’t know you were turned on before.

We don’t tend to be afternoon or evening sex people, though you can never rule that out. But in the morning is our time and I am pretty happy with that arrangement, at least while I have no where else to be and not much else to do.

This post is linked to Kink of the week and Quote Quest. Click below to find out who else has linked up this week.

Blog changes

I’ve been thinking of making some changes to the blog for ages and ages. But somehow haven’t quite got around to it. As another month stretches ahead of me, with little to keep me occupied, I’ve bitten the bullet and started.

The name

At the start my blog was called world of Joolz. This was the name I went under on chat sites and the name S called me throughout our relationship. Since I was trying to get away from being Julie the bored housewife etc, Joolz stuck. For a while.

When I met Master he named me His pleasing bitch. So when I made changes to my blog in 2014 that became it’s name. When I became self hosted that was the url I bought.

Today, I’ve changed the blogs name to MPB and I’m undecided about whether to change it right back. I had thought Master’s pleasing bitch was a bit of a mouthful but maybe MPB is too short.

My About Me page

I’ve completely changed my about MPB page. I’m not really on a journey any more, so it is structured in a way that I think acknowledges that. Next I have to decide how to deal with the actual ‘journey pages’. I think they are an important reference to the past 8 years so should stay in some form. But I plan to tidy them up a bit.

Organising everything

Since that fateful day in February 2018 when I accidentally deleted my blog I’ve had to rebuild much of the behind the scenes structure. (The photo above was taken the morning after). I will forever be grateful to Michael for retrieving most of the posts for me. But I had to go back and re tag and categorise everything as well as to re do the SEO.

Now, the time feels right to review some of that structure so things can be found more easily. This is going to be a bit of a chore, but it’s always fun to look back and see what you said and did at a given time.

One of the things I’m most keen to do is to organise easier access to my photos. That will be my first job after tidying the pages.

Theme and artwork

I plan to move to a magazine type theme very soon and to hopefully reveal new artwork. I’ve loved the photos at the top of the blog, but it’s time for a change.

All in all I’m pretty excited about doing all of this and am hoping it inspires my writing!

Freedom to be me

“Raise a glass to freedom, Something they can never take away.”

~ Lin-Manuel Miranda (“The Story of Tonight” from “Hamilton”)

Freedom is a concept I‘ve taken for granted all my adult life. Even when I felt at my most constrained by marriage or parenthood I always knew deep down I had choices. I worked and had something of a disposable income, though there was a time when I had immense debt. But still I worked a way out of that and managed to pay every penny back. Trouble is you don’t always recognise you have those freedoms and you certainly don’t see the restraints others exist under.

Right now I am extremely lucky. After almost 40 years of work I was able to retire two years ago on a pension that I could just about live on. However, I live with a man who is also retired and has enough put away and so we can enjoy a pleasant lifestyle. We don’t have to worry about having enough food and can shop wherever we want. Our freedoms in other ways are somewhat curtailed right now, but more of that later. But food poverty, or indeed any poverty at all aren’t something we have to worry about.

Yesterday I read this blog post by Jack Monroe (she / they). If you don’t know who Jack is go and read about her here. Struggling to house, feed and clothe her son she accidentally became a food writer and campaigner. The gist of this article is the assumption that poor people could help themselves if they bought basic good and turned them into healthy meals rather than buying convenience products. But actually it is harder to do so than you imagine. Meat, fish and vegetables aren’t necessarily cheaper to buy than items with everything put together. What if you don’t have the electricity to cook or a kitchen to call your own. What if you can’t afford a bag of potatoes and the shop doesn’t sell them as single items.

I didn’t really intend to write about Jack Monroe in this post. But I was so struck by the forcefulness of her arguments that I felt I had to include how poverty prevents freedom. This is something I can identify with because if I hadn’t had a job when I got into debt my choices may have shrunk to where Jack was and to a certain extent still is. I haven’t however forgotten the fear of not having enough money to buy the contents of my food basket.

People are quick to offer advice to others about how they can solve whatever perceived problem they have. To cry that all lives matter and that only women have a cervix (or whatever bandwagon they have jumped on this week). Listening to the voices of those who feel un seen and unheard is much harder. Instead judging others and assuming they had a choice is the flavour of the day.

2020 will go down for me as one of immense learning. I have tried hard to listen and to learn. To understand that people don’t wake up one day and announce to the world ‘I think I’ll become transgender’. Instead such decisions come after years doubt, confusion and anxiety about personal identity. A lack of freedom to express who they really are. I don’t think I even thought about that much before this year and I know I have a lot to learn too. Nor did I really consider that my personal challenges will never be the same as those of someone who is discriminated against because of the colour of their skin or because their name sounds foreign.

Master and I have struggled these past few months because some of our personal freedom has been removed from us. He is particularly fed up that no concerts are taking place, that there is no theatre or cinema to visit and that art galleries have been closed for months. His personal fulfilment comes through those channels as well as the ability to travel. He loves to go to London, see a concert, have dinner and a drink and maybe stay in a hotel. But as frustrating as that is, we still know how lucky and privileged we are. We have a comfortable home filled with books, DVDs and CDs. Plus we have Netflix, YouTube and the internet. We have indulged in nice food and wine from our own home.

We are lucky because we start from a basis of privilege. Thought that doesn’t mean we can’t complain about the things we don’t like about our life right now. However it doesn’t mean that we can’t learn about the lives of others, nor speak up when assumptions are made about those lives. If you are told it is cheaper to buy potatoes in a tin than fresh believe them. If someone tells you that they are being misgendered, being hurt by the careless words of others or that they are more oppressed than you then listen and believe them. And don’t try to make it about you.

Master with a capital M

Photo by Sara Kurfeß on Unsplash

I’m really happy about the No True Way prompt for this week, because I’ve never written about this topic before.

Dominants tend to be the “Alpha Male”, and that is why “Dom” is always spelled with a capital, while “sub” is always lowercase.

First of all let me say I am incredibly inconsistent when it comes to the use of upper / lower case. There was a time when I always capitalised dominant, sir, master etc. There was also a time when I used a lower case I to refer to myself. I guess at the start of my submissive journey I followed what I saw others doing and what I saw written in books. But over time I decided that it would be better grammar and writing practice to capitalise properly. But to be honest it depends on my mood and what I’m writing about.

Being in a submissive mindset

Way back when I was busy discovering my submission my world view was a little romantic. I liked the idea of having my very own dominant and being his submissive. Writing about my experiences was fun and sometimes very arousing. Part of that was overplaying the dynamic a little. Referring to him as Sir or Master helped with what felt a bit like role play.

When I met my now master he wanted me to refer to myself in the third person (as I wrote here). So, it felt right to capitalise him as Sir / Master and to refer to myself as this girl (lower case). Submission felt tangible to me, I wrote about almost being able to touch it. Some days I still feel like that. But at that time we really only saw each other at weekends and during the week I’d write about it. That kept me in my space and I wrote in the third person.

Over time I wrote about other things

Not just our relationship. So gradually I wrote in the third person less and also capitalised the dominant role less. However if I wrote about us and the things we had done I often reverted. Sometimes I still do.

It occurred to me recently that though I always refer to G as Master (or master) here it’s not something I always do in real life. We live together and are partners in many ways. The power exchange is always there, an undercurrent. But isn’t always overt even to us. Calling him Master here is a habit, but also helps to protect our anonymity, even if there are photos of us both on this blog.

I’m not precious about whether I or others capitalise or not

I’m not part of the grammar police, though I prefer correct spellings. I am happy to read blogs and books where the words sir and master are capitalised, or not. I recognise my own inconsistencies and make no excuse for them. I’ll continue to do what I feel is right on any given day. After all, this is my blog and I’ll write what I want in whichever way I choose.

This post is linked to two memes. No True Way and The Blog Days of Summer. Click below to see who else is joining in.

Self doubt

needpix.com

“And by the way, everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self doubt.”

Sylvia Plaith

I never used to have anything in my draft folder. Suddenly though I do. The thing is, I have stuff to say, some of it quite profound but somehow I can’t get the words right. Or I fear I have the words wrong. Increasingly I feel silenced by self doubt.

I constantly think back to pre-lockdown times when, it seems the world was young, bright and non judgemental. Of course it was never like that, but this past few months have made it seem so.

Blogging and Twitter

The community of sex bloggers has changed, just as the world outside has changed. Rather than be kind, understanding and tolerant to difference people have become defensive and intolerant. I’ve been blocked by so many people on Twitter I can hardly keep up. People talk of a conspiracy but do so while whispering to each other in the dark. This is not a world I can inhabit. I have to speak my mind and have to stand up for people I feel and who say they have been mocked and hurt.

There are huge issues to write about. But it is difficult to do so when you have a limited amount of knowledge of the topics. All you can do is learn about the issues and support those with that knowledge. Though I’d like to write something. In particular I’d like to express that making the issue about you rather than them is no defence.

All the time though, I feel I am walking on egg shells. Will I say or write something that is misconstrued. Will I like something said by someone on a list of unsafe people? All of these things swirl in my head as I try to write.

Life

But it isn’t just twitter or the blog. The judging of others is everywhere, take the wearing of masks or going out for an evening. I have no problem wearing a mask in a shop, but do not wish to wear one while walking in the park. I see no point and I want to breath the fresh air and don’t however see I should be judged for this. We have been out for drinks and a meal at a local pub. We chose carefully, we know the staff and are happy with the way things are managed. It’s table service and no one is getting close to anyone, but please don’t judge me for choosing to go there.

Next week I am taking my mum away to a hotel for a couple of days. She has become housebound over the months because it was unsafe to go out and there was no where to take her. She has brittle bones and needs to get out in the sun light. But going to a hotel feels to many like a risk too far. She asked to go but is now filled with her own self doubts. Will she manage to navigate the hotel, what should she take to wear etc.

Health

We have been thinking about my breast cancer recently and what would have happened if I had discovered my lump during this pandemic. As it was I prioritised work and moving house over seeing the doctor. How would I have managed attending appointments and even having surgery without the support of Master? It doesn’t bear thinking about. But what is clear to me is that I have over come cancer and so refuse to give in to worry. I want to and have to live my life in the way I see fit. That doesn’t mean taking unnecessary risks but it doesn’t mean hiding away either.

The way forward through writing

At the beginning I just wrote what I wanted, about what I wanted. I need to get back to that again. Some of the self doubt I had about this is moving away. I recognise that I have written about many topics a lot. I don’t plan to keep doing that. Instead I’m going to signpost my existing writing more effectively. Time has been spent learning about topics I knew little about. But there are also things I know quite a bit about and I need to express them here. There is knowledge to impart and education to provide. Plus of course I have an opinion on many things.

I also see that much of the feelings I’ve been expressing are associated with it being summer. Also, though because I’ve been in mourning. For lost friends (not literally), for a life put on hold during these long months.

Unusually we are off on holiday in September. I fancy that even though we’ll be away there will be more to write about. Anyway I can write about anything I choose. Just because this is a sex blog doesn’t mean I have to write about sex. But then I might.

Back

Yes, this is a picture of my back, and bottom etc. I’m not sure when it was taken but I quite like the shape of my body in the image.

I’ve been reflecting this week on my blogging future and have found that just by writing about what is troubling me, I feel more positive. It’s weird, because that’s the advice I’d give to anyone when faced with an issue. Talk (or in this case write) about it.

I didn’t actually go anywhere and have no intention of doing so. But I do feel like the real me is back. I have some plans for the blog and that will involve a redesign and change of emphasis. It will also probably mean I’ll write less new stuff for a while. Because it is actually impossible to write, read, make changes and think all at the same time. I know because I’ve tried and it made me particularly unproductive!

I have no intention of changing one thing though: I plan to keep sharing my photos and participating in memes like Sinful Sunday. Click the lips to see who else is linked up this week.

What inspires me to write about sex?

Writing cat | Public domain vectors

By it’s very nature reading and writing about sex can be both liberating and exciting. That if the sex being written about is interesting and exciting. For many years there was no mileage in writing about my own sex life. It was dull, bordering on non existent. But as I wrote in my last post, starting a new sexual journey made me want to write about my experiences.

Writing about real life experiences

It took me a while to get into my stride. I was overwhelmed by the emotion of it all and so struggled to write down details. I still do to a certain extent. But at least with real life experiences you know what has and hasn’t been possible (see below). Plus, the emotion of a sexual experience is just as important as the physical and physiological effects in my opinion. Unless you are writing pure porn I guess. But I’m more of an erotica lover. Plus I prefer to ground myself in reality rather than fantasy.

Once I met Master things changed slightly. Unlike S, Master reads all my posts and will often go back to review what I said about a particular event. So, increasingly writing had him in mind. I couldn’t and can’t always get events in the right order, after all I’m not writing as I do it! But he often remarks at how hot what I’ve written is.

So, the next reason is to get the audience hot. After all, who doesn’t like to be told that what they have written is sexually arousing. If you are a sex blogger anyway.

Improving on some of the fiction that’s out there

There is some amazing erotic fiction to read. Plus all of the how to manuals. But there is also some absolute rubbish. Some people seem unable to work through questions such as is it physically possible before putting pen to paper. The use of odd euphemisms in erotic fiction is something that The Other Livvy has picked up on. There is little that turns me off more than being unable to describe people’s anatomy and actions without using completely unbelievable phraseology.

So, one of the inspirations for writing about sex, whether based on real life events or fiction is to do better. After language, plot and characters feels pretty important. Why are so many books based on the lives of super rich men seeking to find a young bimbo to be their sex toy? Why are there so many young girls out there who crave submission? Who moments later can be found kneeling naked for their boss or tied to a bench? Of course there is plenty of gay erotica, but I don’t doubt that these dynamics are replicated.

I’m nearly 58 years old and I want to read about people who are older. Who have been through some of life’s problems and who don’t think that money is the answer to everything. Many of my fellow bloggers write brilliant erotica as well as about their own true life events. Good printed / e-book erotica is out there but you can do far worse than some of that written by the sex bloggers and writers we know. People like Brigit Delaney, Cara Theron and Floss, to name but 3.

Education

Finally I write about sex to help educate others. As I’ve written above, real life isn’t always like in books and magazines. We aren’t all young and skinny with a crazy libido. Not all penis owners have huge cocks. People experience pain and discomfort, people fund themselves unable to come. Not everyone loves to suck cock or to have anal sex. What’s more, it’s possible for a well educated woman of 50 to have little in the way of sexual experience.

That means it’s important to write about real sex and relationships. To explore and celebrate the great experiences, but not to ignore the bad or difficult.

I guess following on from my post yesterday wondering where I am going on my blog. Maybe this post is another step to finding out who I am and what my purpose is. Writing about sex for me is about detailing my own experiences, thinking about the experiences of others and hopefully helping to educate.

Encouraging growth

This photo was taken a few weeks ago when my tomato plants were tiny. They are probably 5 times the size now and just about to flower. I know a lot of us are struggling with inspiration and purpose right now.

12 or more weeks into lock down we wonder what the point is. How can our little part of the universe matter when disease, prejudice and hate prevails. The world as we knew it has changed. The status quo is gone.

But maybe out of this mess and chaos we can rebuild. Like the tomato plants we can grow a new, a fresh.

The sex blogging community has changed beyond recognition. We have been angry and we have mourned. But I think now is time to move into a new period. One of growth.

I think this is what I need to concentrate on now. Helping us (and of course me) to remove and to grow. Join me to encourage growth in those around us. Start by clicking on the lips below and going to at least one other blogger’s Sinful Sunday post. Show them you care, promote their work and lets rise up again.

Revising my goals for 2020

Well this year has turned out a little different than expected. When I posted my goals for the year on 31st December and 1st January none of us knew what was in store for us. But since the only certainty right now is not knowing how long things will be different it’s time to review and revise those goals.

Goal 1 was about planning

For the first 3 months of the year I was really diligent about planning, reviewing and keeping up with my achievements. I love my planner and am now glad I didn’t buy one with pre-printed dates. When gradually your appointments and plans disappear from sight, it is difficult to see the point of planning every day. At the beginning of the year I was writing for several memes each week. Now I feel unable to write for many of them and sadly Masturbation Monday has gone on hiatus.

So. It’s time to stop using the memes as my planning tool and instead think about what topics I want to write about. Then if they fit somewhere and I want to join I’ll do so. It’s a shame as the memes are great drivers of traffic.

Goal 2 was about getting fit and healthy

I was massively focused on this goal because I assumed I was going to have reconstruction surgery by the autumn. My new blog and it’s own meme was to be one of my tools. But as lockdown began I struggled to find purpose in either losing weight or in writing on the blog. For many weeks my weight plateaued. I had just received my 1 stone award – the last slimming world group before lockdown. Now though my weight is creeping up. The main culprit I know is wine. We’ve slipped back into old ways and I’ve got very bad at saying no. Our slimming groups continue, but via zoom. We all weigh ourselves at home and then send the weight to the consultant.

But there has been little incentive to make progress. Often I don’t hold myself accountable and it’s difficult for the consultant and group from afar. Plus, of course everyone is dealing with lockdown issues that are thrown at them. whether it is the loss of a job, home schooling or health worries.

This is one goal that has to stand. I want to be fit and healthy whether I have surgery or not. So, I plan to focus on putting the right things in my mouth and to losing weight. Even though I can’t go swimming I can walk and I will try to double down on better diet and exercise choices.

Goal 3 was about my new blog

Who starts a new meme and chooses a prompt about eating out just as the world’s restaurants close? Me that’s who.

I was really starting to get into my new Food, Fitness and Health blog by mid March and was writing regularly. But I can’t deny it’s been a struggle. I am now planning to devote more time to it. I have made the For the Health of it Meme monthly and hope that with some more promotion I can get things going. This month’s For the Health of it prompt is – Hopes and Fears for the future. Head over and take a look.

Goal 4 was about making improvements to the blog

This will be my main project for the coming months. I want to think about the style, to create a gallery of my photos and to improve elements such as ‘all about me’. I was thinking about trying to monetise the blog and haven’t ruled that out. But I know I am less driven than many of my smutlancer colleagues. I’m not looking for a job as such and like to write for fun.

I am however really enjoying being a smutlancer, even though I’m not doing the ‘lancing’ bit. We have a great and very supportive group of people who support, critique and make suggestions about each other’s work. Kayla and Molly are there to oversee and provide advice and guidance. But it isn’t about them telling us what we should do, instead it’s much much more of a team approach. I know that if I want to start pitching for work I have the support network around me. There’s also help with the more technical issues and our Slack channel is great for bouncing ideas off each other. It’s fabulous value for $5-50 per month. I highly recommend it.

Goal 5 was about writing more fiction

This is something I have actually achieved. Indeed at times I’ve found it easier to write fiction than about my dull life. I plan to do much more.

Goal 6 was about getting divorced

My Decree Absolute came through in April and so I have achieved that. 🙂

Goal 7 was about earning some money

I started a project for my ex employers at the beginning of the year. Sadly I’m not sure the recommendations will ever get implemented due to Covid. Plus, I’m still waiting to get paid which is a bit irritating. I’ve also discovered that the person who took my job and who I thought was a friend is great at gas lighting people. Still, you live and learn.

I have earned some money from working during the pandemic though and though it’s not much it is welcome. On balance I don’t think I’m going to worry about looking for a job or anything. Though I may change my mind when I start spending more money.