Benefits of Being A Woman of “The Perfect Age”

life after 50, over 50, retirement, baby boomer women, baby boomersGood Housekeeping and L’Oréal are hosting a “50 Over 50” luncheon with a celebrity panel at Hearst Tower in New York City and would love for you to attend” said the invitation earlier this month. The event was held to honor 50 accomplished women who were selected for being at the top of their game during their life after 50 and for their positive attitude about aging. It was fitting that this program happened the same day that a woman clinched the Democratic nomination for President of the United States. (Go Hillary! #IAmWithHer)

A Panel Of Post 50 Celebs
The star-studded panel included:

Marlo Thomas - I have always adored Marlo, ever since the 60s when she was an aspiring actress in That Girl. Do you remember how her character Annemarie moved from her hometown of Brewster, New York to NYC? I so wanted to be just like Annemarie. I also admire Marlo’s philanthropic and activist work.

Marlo Thomas; #theperfectage; Good Housekeeping; Loreal

My favorite “That Girl” Marlo Thomas.

Carole Radziwill, author and TV personality – “I love Carole,” said my daughter A, who is a fan of The Real Housewives of New York City. While Carole appears in this hit Bravo reality show, it is her previous career as a TV journalist and producer that interested me. I was equally moved by her story of widowhood at a young age. After losing her husband ABC News producer Anthony Radizwill to cancer, she wrote a memoir, What Remains, and a novel, The Widow’s Guide to Sex & Dating. I definitely want to read both.

Carole Radziwill; Good Housekeeping; Loreal; 50 Over 50; #theperfectage; post50

Carole Radziwill is a bestselling author and TV personality.

Ellen Levine, editorial director, Hearst Magazines Continue reading

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My Post 50 Yoga Journey: Time To Celebrate Accomplishments

life after 50, baby boomer women, boomer wellness“How do you feel?” asked my teacher B after I concluded my final one hour practice teach to become a yoga instructor. I was overwhelmed with gratitude for all that I had accomplished during the past 16 months of YTT200 training at Lourdes Institute of Wholistic Studies in Camden, NJ.

There was a bond among the five of us who went through the journey together. We were forever changed in mind, body, and spirit. During our closing ceremonies we surrounded each other in a circle with a special blessing and chant of “om”. We were encouraged to observe and give positive feedback after each practice teach. “Leave the teacher open to new possibilities, alternatives, and choices rather than the idea that there is a right or wrong way,” B said.

As new teachers, we each created an affirmation about ourselves and our teaching. “I, Judi, am grateful for having completed my YTT 200 teacher training and look forward to sharing the benefits of yoga with others,” I chanted the sentence three times and then my classmates and teachers repeated it in unison to reconfirm.

yoga; yoga teacher training, Lourdes Institute of Wholistic Studies, meditation

As new yoga teachers, we each created an affirmation.

Becoming A Teacher, But Always A Student
Gerald Marzorati, a former editor of The New York Times Magazine, wrote an essay last month called “Practicing for a Better Old Age.” In his writing Gerald recommends that during your life after 50 that you “Find something — something new, something difficult — to immerse yourself in and improve at.” He says that “What brings us to the the beauty of a disciplined effort at improvement and, I think, the only guaranteed benefit of finding something, as I found in tennis, to learn and commit to: You see time and make it yours. You counter the narrative of diminishment and loss with one of progress and bettering.” Continue reading

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A Fabulous Day of Fashion at the MET Costume Exhibit

life after 50, over 50, retirement, baby boomer women, baby boomersA few weeks ago I wrote a review of the new documentary, The First Monday in May, which is all about The Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET) Costume Institute’s 2015 exhibit “China: Through The Looking Glass,” and the star-studded fundraiser that celebrates the opening. After seeing the film I told myself that I was not going to miss this year’s Costume Institute exhibit.

I’m excited to tell you that my BFFs N and J and I went to see “Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology” at the MET in New York City last week. Simply put, IT WAS FABULOUS and YOU HAVE TO SEE IT! It’s definitely worth adding to your summer 2016 “to do” list, especially if you love fashion.

Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology
We spent almost two hours walking the exhibit halls “oohing” at all the dresses and gowns, one prettier than the next. The exhibition explores the dichotomy between the hand (manus) and the machine (machina) as it relates to haute couture (custom made clothes) versus designer prêt-à-porter (garments that are produced in multiples for the mass market). It is structured around mêtiers, or trades of dressmaking found in the Encyclopédie of the French Enlightenment (1751-72). The techniques include embroidery, leatherwork, artificial flowers, pleating, lacework, leather, even paper — some hand-sewn and others machine stitched — in certain instances it’s hard to tell which is which.

The MET Costume Institute; #ManusxMachina; fashion; Chanel Wedding Ensemble

The Chanel Wedding Ensemble

Costume Institute Curator Andrew Bolton did an amazing job displaying the fashions, including the dramatic rotunda entrance with a Chanel Wedding Ensemble featuring a magnificent long train magnified like a kaleidoscope on the ceiling. The main room is followed up with showcases on each mêtier including embroidery, leatherwork, artificial flowers, pleating, lacework, leather, and even paper. Some of the fashions have hand-sewn details and others machine stitching — in certain instances it’s hard to tell which is which.

House of Dior Is My Favorite
There were so many beautiful dresses. My favorites were mostly from House of Dior — some designed by Christian Dior and other more contemporary styles by their Belgian born designer Raf Simons. Since pictures tell a thousand words, take a look below. I think you’ll see why I chose dresses from this collection.

Dior Embroidery Dresses; MET Costume Institute; manusxmachina; #manusxmachina; fashion

My favorite dresses from Dior. Designed in the 1950s.

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It’s Like Magic! Entertainment and Home Security at My Fingertips

Wow! Xfinity has a lot more to offer families than I knew! A big thanks to them for partnering with me to bring you this post. Also enter the group Rafflecopter giveaway from Xfinity for a NEST Learning Thermostat (ASV $249). Entry at the end of this post. #XfinityMoms

life after 50, baby boomer women, boomer womenLast week, my boyfriend L was talking into the television remote asking it to find a show that he wanted to watch. “My remote doesn’t listen,” I said to L. “Well my new one does,” L replied. “You should get one.”

A few days later, I was invited to attend a blogger event in Lawrenceville, NJ, put on by Comcast to introduce their Xfinity stores. I was eager to learn more about the Xfinity services, especially since I am a long-time customer who is paying a lot for many of these services and not utilizing them to the fullest.

#XfinityMoms; Xfinity Voice Remote

The presentations left me in awe of the entertainment that is available at my fingertips. And it isn’t even a coming attraction – it’s already here, right now in my house. The technology was fascinating – almost like magic! For those of you who are Xfinity customers, I encourage you to read on. Continue reading

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“70Candles!” Shares Advice on Positive Aging

life after 50, over 50, retirement, baby boomer women, baby boomersLast month, The New York Times journalist Jane Brody wrote an article about “Thriving at Age 70 and Beyond.” I enjoy reading Jane’s weekly columns on Personal Health, but this one was especially appealing. Jane mentioned a blog called 70Candles!, with stories from women in their 70s, and a book by the same title written by bloggers (and now authors) Jane Giddan and Ellen Cole.

While I am fast approaching my 60s, I was intrigued by the advice that these two long-term friends had to share about how women are “thriving in their 8th decade.” I contacted Jane and Ellen to ask if they would participate in an interview for my blog. Their wisdom about positive aging is very inspiring for baby boomer women who are following in their footsteps. It’s great to know that there is much to look forward to into our 70s, 80s, 90s, and maybe 100s! (Note: if you cannot view the video below please click here.)

A Practical and Positive Guide
The book, 70Candles! Women Thriving in Their 8th Decade, is a compilation from the conversations that Jane and Ellen had during gatherings with women of this era and from many of the women who contributed to their blog. The authors do a great job pulling all the pieces together into as they say, “a practical and positive guide to have at your side as you traverse your seventies.” Included are lessons learned from their gatherings, a review of pertinent literature on this topic, and a look at the future. In the back section is a handy reference with relevant web sites and additional readings.

The Taos Institute, the publishers of the book, kindly provided a copy of 70Candles! for a giveaway. Be sure to enter the Rafflecopter below and leave a comment on how you intend to stay vibrant during your second act.

Now let’s hear more from Jane and Ellen: Continue reading

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Celebrate National Better Hearing Month With A Free Screening

life after 50, baby boomer women, boomer wellnessAs a blogger I get invited to a variety of press events. While I wasn’t able to attend the Duracell event in NYC last week, I wanted to share some of the news from their “Stay Connected” initiative in honor of National Better Hearing Month which takes place in May.

I was doubly disappointed to miss the event because actor John Slattery, from Mad Men, Spotlight, and Veep, is their spokesperson. John was chosen to promote the campaign because his father suffers from hearing loss and wears hearing aids.

Take A Free National Hearing Test In May
According to the Center for Hearing and Communication, hearing impairment affects 48 million Americans and 80 percent of those affected by hearing loss over the age of 65 do not seek treatment. To help people take the first step towards staying connected, Duracell is offering 50,000 free hearing screenings throughout the month of May.

National Better Hearing Month

Actor John Slattery helped kick off Duracell’s “Stay Connected” initiative. (Photo by Diane Bondareff/Invision for Duracell/AP Images)

The National Hearing Test is a quick and convenient over-the-phone hearing screening developed with funding from the National Institutes of Health. It’s the only free screening test that is scientifically validated, not-for-profit and which the test results remain private to the user. It’s recommended that you use a landline (not a cell phone) to take the test.

Although I have several years to go before 65, I thought I would take the free screening. I’m so glad I did and I highly suggest you take the test too. You can find more information about the test at www.Duracell.com/StayConnected” or by calling 1-844-9-DURACELL.  Continue reading

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Remembering Mom With Her Sweet Poetry on Mother’s Day

life after 50, over 50, retirement, baby boomer women, baby boomersIt’s been three years since my mom passed away at 91 and not a week goes by that I don’t think about her. Oftentimes I wish I could pick up the phone and call to tell her about my day, or about my kids, or discuss my fears, so that she can tell me everything is going to be okay.

When my sister and I packed up my mom’s condo after she moved into an assisted living residence, I found 11 small pieces of paper all folded up neatly in an envelope in her desk drawer. The papers were brown around the edges and tattered from age. I opened each one very slowly, being careful not to tear the seams. Inside each folded paper was a sweet poem. Seems my mom was a poet and I didn’t even know it.

Mother's Day; caregiving, life after 50

I found 11 pieces of tattered paper with poems my mom had written in the 1940s.

Composed in the 1940s when my mom was in her 20s, her poems tell stories of men going off to World War II with hopes that they return. There are verses about young love and friendships, and about what family life was like in those days. There are tales of summer outings and frolics at the beach. From her words you can tell that mom was a keen observer of her surroundings and enjoyed having fun with rhyme.

There were no computers or mobile phones in the 1940s. Mom hand-typed each poem on a typewriter, sometimes crossing out words and replacing them with others. I don’t even think there was white-out back then.

Mom grew up in the Bronx and traveled by train to her job in Brooklyn. She would be very surprised to see what a hipster place Williamsburg and its nearby neighborhoods have become today.

I’ll be celebrating Mother’s Day with my daughter A and my son D in NYC this Sunday. We’re having brunch at a hot new restaurant in town. Maybe when we’re done, we’ll take a ride on the subway in honor of my mom, their late grandmom Pearl.

My mom wrote a poem called “Subway Rides” that I’d like to share with you. Go ahead and read it. Then close your eyes and see if you can picture what it was like to be young, single, and living in NYC more than 70 years ago. Continue reading

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An Easy Way To Shop For Stylish Eyewear

boomer beauty, life after 50, makeup for 50+ women, over 50“Mom, you can’t buy anymore frames,” said my daughter A during our travels to Paris a few years ago. I had never seen so many optical  shops in one city. We were in the Jewish Quarter where I purchased two tortoise-shell frames that I later filled with my progressive and computer lenses.

As a post 50 fashionista, I do believe that eyewear is an important accessory and sends a statement about your style. “Because people generally recognize you by your face, the eyeglasses you choose to wear are a very real part of your identity,” says Erinn Morgan, editor-in-chief of Eyecare Business.

online eyewear, life after 50, over 50, Felix+Iris eyewear

Stylish Eyewear: I’m sporting black frames from Felix + Iris and tortoise shell frames from my trip to Paris.

Today there are many online shops for stylish specs and readers. It’s good to know what styles look best for your shaped face (see my blog post about this tip). Many of the shops let you try on frames before you buy and provide measurements for each frame. You can use a ruler to determine the size of your current glasses and compare. Some shops require a faxed prescription from your doctor prior to ordering. I also recommend having your PD (pupillary distance) properly measured by an optometrist. This measurement is used to make eyeglasses, but not usually included in your prescription.

A Range Of Readers
Being a boomer blogger, I frequently receive emails from online shops that sell readers. Readers are a trend I noticed at the Winter 2016 NY NOW Gift and Lifestyle Show. It’s no surprise that there are more reader options available to midlife women, with Eyecessorize reporting that there are now 30.9 million Americans wearing over-the-counter readers.

Although I don’t personally wear readers, I know many of my blog readers do. If you’re one who likes to have a pair to match every outfit, here are some sites to check out:

Readers.com offers hundreds of inexpensive bifocal reading glasses including no-line bifocals, fashion styles, and sun readers. My friends at readers.com provided a 35 percent discount  if you want to order a pair. The code is ENJOY35OFF and is valid until May 31st. In addition, they are offering one lucky blog reader a free pair of their Bouquet glasses – so be sure to enter the giveaway below. (Note: Also check out my blog post about their online sister company Felix + Iris, where I was treated to a pair of frames that I wear all the time.)

Bouquet readers; reading glasses; midlife eyes; far-sighted eyes

You can win a pair of Bouquet readers from readers.com

Peepers.com readers were an Oprah “O” List favorite for 2016. These colorful specs come in all shapes and sizes. Continue reading

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A Behind The Scenes Look At The MET Costume Exhibit And Gala

life after 50, baby boomer women, boomer womenDespite the fact that Vogue editor Anna Wintour did not invite me to the Tribeca Film Festival’s kickoff, or that she declined to send an invite for the 2016 MET (aka. The Metropolitan Museum of Art) Costume Institute Gala which is happening on May 2 (mind you there is still time for an invitation to arrive), I could not wait to watch the new documentary, The First Monday in May. The film is a mesmerizing look at the creation of the MET Costume Institute’s 2015 exhibit “China: Through The Looking Glass,” and the star-studded fundraiser that celebrates the opening.

The First Monday in May

A Preview of The First Monday In May
Thanks to the nice people at Magnolia Pictures, I was able to preview the film on my iPad last week. And I’m here to say that If you’re a fashionista like me, and you missed last year’s exhibit, sadly like me, I encourage you to see The First Monday in May, which opened in select theaters on April 15. While watching the film, I felt like I was an insider on what the former Vogue editor-at-large Andre Leon Talley says, “has become the SuperBowl of…fashion events.” Continue reading

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Gluten-Free Snacks That Are Great For Spring Munchies

life after 50, baby boomer women, boomer womenFinally the weather is warming up. I am so ready to get back outdoors after a long winter. According to my ayurvedic studies, it’s good to put your feet on the earth every day. This is a challenging task when it’s 30 degrees and there’s snow on the ground.

Melissa Carver, PhD  from the Chopra Center says that “Spring is a beautiful reminder for us humans to transform ourselves as well as our home. You may feel energized and more alive than you have in months. This is because our sacred sun has returned to bring new beginnings and balance.”

Gluten-Free Spring Snacking
“We have some new Gold Emblem snacks for spring, many of them are gluten-free” said the PR team at CVS. “Would you like to participate in our CVS Spring Snacking sponsored campaign?”*

“Count me in,” I chimed, as I’m always looking for tasty gluten-free snacks.

Since going on the FODMAP diet, also known as the tummy diet, I’ve tried to stay gluten-free when it comes to my snacks and most of my menu planning. It’s quieted my IBS (irritable bowel syndrome).

A big box of CVS Gold Emblem gluten-free products arrived on my doorstep last week. I asked my BFF L, who is a registered dietitian, to join me in the taste test. We sampled all the snacks, except for the Beef Jerky. I told my boyfriend L that I’m saving the jerky for him since he likes snacks that are high in protein.

For Those Who Like Savory Snacks
First, we evaluated the gluten-free savory snacks:

Veggie Chips are light and airy, with 30 percent less fat than leading national brand potato chips, and a good crunch. The flavor is very mild.
Jalapeno Cheddar Flavored Quinoa Puffs are more spicy, with adequate burn.

gluten-free salty snacks; gluten-free snacking; CVS Gold Emblem snacks, boomer wellness

CVS Gold Emblem Veggie Chips and Jalapeno Cheddar Flavored Quinoa Puffs are gluten-free snacks.

Heavenly Light Popcorn comes in a single-serve bag. If you’re watching your carbs, it’s only 1/2 a carb for the entire bag and not too high in sodium. We thought the popcorn had a nice texture.
Pistachio & Almond Blend was my favorite – since I’m a big snacker of protein-rich nuts. These nuts are unsalted. Continue reading

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