In case you were wondering when it IS appropriate to say, “You’re in such good shape…beautiful,”…
When our president looked at Brigitte Macron, the first lady of France, and said, “You’re in such good shape,” women of a certain age knew exactly what he meant. At 64 years old, she is 24 years older than her husband. Our first lady is 46 years old; our president is 70. Interesting mathematical coincidence, huh?!
I’m a glass half-full kind of gal; always have been, so I haven’t stopped looking for something good to come out of the results of our presidential election. Perhaps having the most openly chauvinistic president ever inhabiting the White House will force a light on the fact that we’ve got work to do. I hope so.
“Nature gives you the face you have at twenty. Life shapes the face you have at thirty. But at fifty you get the face you deserve.”
― Coco Chanel
I wish I could sit down over a glass of champagne and talk to Coco. How old was she when she spoke those words? What did she mean? What did she think of her own face at 20, 30 and 50?
I first encountered her words shortly before I turned 30 and they inspired a trip to the drug store where I purchased Oil of Olay Day Cream with a SPF 15 and I promised myself that each and every day, rain or shine, I’d slather my face in protection, wash before bed and slather again with night cream. I’ve done that, with the rare exception.
I didn’t really think much beyond my daily ritual again until I hit 40. I added facials once a month to the budget. Estheticians agreed that my routine was good, but inadequate, so I added a scrub at night every other day.
A decade later, I really wised up. This “getting older thing” was just going to continue, if I was lucky! I decided it was fine to try a product or minimally invasive procedure that was guaranteed to take 5-7 years off my face. However, after doing the math, I realized I’d still look 50! Then it struck me that no one really cared if I looked 50 or 57, including my husband.
I’m the only one who has to meet myself in the mirror each day.
I found myself reciting those words aloud when it hit me that the truth of them lies not in the literal interpretation but in the figurative one. My life is more than half lived. When I look back on my actions and choices, am I content with what I see reflected back? When I look at myself from this point of view, the mirror is crowded with the faces of others: husband, daughter, Nonnie, brother, friends. Turns out I did prepare to meet myself in the mirror, but the preparation did not come from a bottle purchased at the drugstore.
Let me introduce you to my friend, Franziska; I call her Franzi. She is energetic, adventurous, diligent, generous, amiable, considerate and sincere. Really! And, now you too can benefit from her thoughts about travel, beauty, lifestyle and well-being. She was born and raised in Europe and has travelled extensively. She holds a Master’s degree in hospitality and is employed as the Director of Spa Operations at a beautiful resort on California’s Central Coast.
When I want advice about:
shoemakers in Italy
sightseeing in Germany
anti-aging night cream
best spa treatments
I ask Franzi. Now, you can, too!
She’s also fun to talk to. She’s just as honest and accessible in her posts as she is in person. Franzi consistently informs, entertains and motivates me. I think you’ll like her, too!
While sitting in a popular, local bar enjoying a glass of wine with a friend, I overheard the gentleman at the next table say:
“Wow it must be hard to be one of those visiting dignitaries’ wives who are required to have their picture taken standing next to Melania!”
CNN was showing footage of the Japanese Prime Minister’s recent visit to the White House.
I laughed and whispered to my friend that I did not know how I managed to endure Sunday’s party as I was photographed many times posing with my young, tall, stunning friends who came to celebrate in my pink shed.
I returned home to google the photos from the prime minister’s visit. Although I could not locate the height of Akie Abe, I’d guess that she is at least six inches shorter than our first lady and I noted that she does not look like a supermodel. But, my research did not stop there.
I was fascinated to read about a very unconventional, opinionated and accomplished first lady. She holds a master’s degree in Social Design Studies and worked for the world’s largest advertising agency. She founded an organic izakaya (Japanese bar and casual eatery) and worked as a popular radio disc jockey (known by the handle Akky).
She has also managed to maintain her own views despite her husband’s position. She became popularly known as the “domestic opposition party” because her opinions were often in contradiction to those of her husband. She marched in the gay pride parade in Tokyo in 2014 and publicly supports the LGBTQ community.
She and her husband underwent unsuccessful fertility treatments and she has publicly stated that she has come to accept the blessings and disappointments in her life.
So, I don’t know her, but I’m guessing that she was unfazed by having a photo-op with a former model. I am however left wondering how our president feels having his picture taken alongside Justin Trudeau?!
What do you think?
This picture is a favorite of mine. It was taken a few years ago when I was 10 pounds heavier than today. The contrast of my “womanly” shape with my daughter’s young shape is beautiful to me.
My husband, who is one of my favorite things, bought me the Blu-Ray edition of my all-time favorite movie, “The Sound of Music,” and we enjoyed it in all its glory last night. I love a good sing along and I love “My Favorite Things” most among all of the wonderful songs in the film. The lyrics got me thinking about my own favorite things and wondering about yours too! You already know I love my hubby, daughter and doggies! Here’s a list of the stuff I like:
Raindrops on (pink) roses… Julie was right, they are lovely
Illy coffee…when we serve it, our guests consistently ask, “Wow, what is this coffee?”
Beckmann’s Three Seed Sourdough bread…you know how I love to cook;) If I have this in the house, I simply top it with an egg, cheese or veggies, and viola…it’s a meal
My new Kitchen Aid Mini Stand Mixer in pink…it fits in my very small kitchen
Cream…poured into my coffee, whipped to top my fruit and to spread between layers of cake
My two favorite destinations: Maui and London…one for relaxing, the other for exploring
Chanel No. 5 on my pulse points since I was 20 years old
I’m in my final phase of blog instruction…yippeee!
My technology specialist, Kristin, says I’ve “mastered” the basics (I’m proud!), and it’s time to implement Search Engine Optimization (SEO). This is just a fancy way of saying that I’m looking for readers who might enjoy my content. Basically, I’m learning how to leave a trail of breadcrumbs, in the form of keywords, that will lead new visitors to my site.
I had my first lesson yesterday. It began when I innocently searched the phrase “women over 50.” I would love to have readers of all ages and both sexes, but primarily I’m speaking to women in the baby boomer generation, so I wanted to see what results this search would yield.
There was good news and bad news.
The top ten articles involved advice on the perfect hairstyles for the mature woman and lists of the sexiest women over 50. A couple of articles combined both topics to give advice on how to look “hot” after 50. This was very good news for me, as this is not my niche. If I wanted to dispense beauty advice from my pink shed, I’d have a lot of competition.
But, really?! I love a good tutorial on how to make the dark circles under my eyes disappear or a pictorial of beautiful pink dresses. (See my post entitled The Pink Dress). I love perusing Vogue magazine, “playing” in my closet and trying the latest shade of lip color. This is one small piece of the whole that makes me who I am. This is the antidote to real life worries: fun. But if age brings wisdom, then we understand that holding onto our lost youth will not bring happiness or fulfillment. Sometimes, I feel pleased when I look in the mirror and sometimes I don’t. But I’m always happy when I’m reading or writing, dining with friends, hosting a party, volunteering my time or talent and thinking about my lovely daughter.
So, if you’d like advice on how to be hot, there’s plenty of it out there! You will not find it here! However, I do believe that I have the key to achieving the perfect hairstyle at any age: find a great hairdresser! Now you don’t have to read those articles!