When it comes to AGEING, what’s in it for ME?

Have you ever sat somewhere with a childhood friend & lamented about how the years seem to be just flying by & the mirror doesn’t seem to be as kind as it could be these days? Yep, I have. After a few deep sighs & a couple of good laughs, you actually realize that wrinkles, laughter lines & even that muffin top belly have been the consequences of a most remarkable & interesting journey… life.

What do we get from growing older? A tremendously beautiful sense of dignity. We can look back on markers & years, quite an astonishing thought, really, that, because of one single choice, our lives changed. Because we chose a certain path, in a certain year and met a certain person, in just that certain little place, our lives changed.

I went overseas at age 17, I left Australia. I was green around the gills, and when I returned, 3 months later, my life had changed in so many remarkable ways, I got a good bout of the travel bug & off I went back & forth between Europe & Australia, my eyes wide open & my mouth, too! Lot’s of wow! wow! wow! moments. Because of that rather scary decision, at that time, (I chose to go overseas on a random holiday with my dad, & celebrated my 18th birthday in Venice, whoohoo!) I am NOW a seasoned traveler.

 

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I’m 52 years old. I celebrated my 52nd birthday flying over the Indian ocean, 2 years earlier I was in Germany for my 50th birthday, & last year, I was in France. I don’t have that fresh-faced youthful 17-year-old face anymore, but I do have a face I’m happy with, a face that speaks of joy, & joy on a woman always looks truly beautiful & beats the best face lift!

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Ageing, what’s in it for me? Laughter lines, a much-loved & proudly prized cesarean scar from having my wonderful son at 35 years old, some varicose veins from that pregnancy, too, sad times from divorce & so, a furrowed brow, perhaps. What does it all mean? It means I lived. To age means to experience life, & I am still using all the colored crayons in the crayon box! To age means to go through unpleasant times, sometimes heartbreaking grief & then use those tears to help others through their ‘journey in the valley.’5238093.jpg

The most wonderful thing about ageing is all the love you get to GIVE &  GET, & all that love needs time to bloom & grow. Like good wine or cheese, the years bring maturity & stability, to our relationships, marriage & family.

Ageing, what’s in it for me? Well, next time you are sitting with an old childhood friend, think of all the memories you have made together, the good & bad times shared. The years give us so much more than wrinkles, they have given us a remarkably beautiful sense of dignity & that’s a good reason to smile. Cheers x

 

 

 

 

“She threw away all her masks, & put on her soul.”

Confidence doesn’t come from what you wear. It’s true, a nice glam outfit helps, but eventually, that outfit has to come off & you are left with YOU. Be happy about that! I have stood naked in front of my mirror & faced myself, I wanted to wish those extra pounds away, I wanted to take ten years off my face, & what I had to acknowledge & do acknowledge is that I am who I am, warts & all, I am me. I am not perfect. That’s the key, fall in love with being YOU. There is no one on this planet like you. You are special. You are worth it! Don’t wait for others to give you that pat on the back or that praise from their lips, it all starts with how you talk to you. Adorn your inner self with the beauty of kind, gentle & supportive words. Clothes can’t do that.

I was talking to a woman the other day who has breast cancer. She is facing herself. I looked at this woman & thought…wow! This woman is truly beautiful. We sat & had a cup of tea together & as she spoke, I listened to her soul. There was such a mixture of fear, courage, tears & beauty, too. Her naked soul was openly exposed to me & she was frightened like a scared child. Everything she exchanged to me was real. Have we forgotten to be real?  Have we forgotten to have meaningful exchanges with people? To touch & comfort their suffering rather than just admire their outer garments! A truly genuine person revealing real feelings is very rare to find in a world that constantly bombards us with “Gotta be more, do more…you are not enough unless…” Bah! Don’t buy into it or you’ll never escape the knife of the plastic surgeon! YOU ARE ENOUGH! I think that is where it all begins, with YOU, not accepting the ugly, useless labels that society tries to slap on you. If you are 60 plus, great! Wisdom speaks from the lips of those who have walked this earth a little longer & what a fine adornment is that pearl of prudence, insight & respect, there is no outfit that can ever compete with such valuable qualities of the heart.

Personally, fashion does not dictate to me what I must wear year in & year out. I wear clothes that I like, I don’t follow the crowd & I prefer the truly timeless classics, a style that doesn’t date.

Just be your lovely self & KNOW you are lovely BEFORE you dress up glam! & when that outfit comes off, you will be left with you, someone uniquely special, someone who is real, who can be frightened, scared & courageous all at the same time. Collect real people, fake ones are a dime a dozen! In this life, when very scary things happen, you don’t need a glamour queen sitting across from you at the table, you do need someone who has got their real on way before they’ve ever got their fashion style on. Make up your inner wardrobe first, it is way more important than your clothes closet.  You can’t buy confidence, it can’t be found in a clothes store. Confidence is found within you, as you enjoy & appreciate the truly unique & beautiful person that you are.girl-2178157_960_720

French Women don’t Compare, They Admire. -Renata Huster-

I like that about French women. I like it a lot. It doesn’t matter what age, shape or size they are, if a drop dead gorgeous model is standing right in front of them, they won’t reach for their jacket to hide their muffin top, they will simply ADMIRE the other woman, her outfit & her shoes without comparing themselves to her. They won’t even ask where she bought her shoes because they know that style is a very individual thing, so those shoes look great on the model, she, however, has a very different style of shoe, SHE likes. The model rocks! & so does she! Remember too, comparing often leads to competing, that’s exhausting & a death knell to friendship. Admiring is always win=win!

A French woman likes her body. Her body is never fat! It’s voluptuously shaped,  curved…rounded. A French woman wears her sensuality well & effortlessly because she knows she doesn’t need to try, the mere fact that she was born a woman & all the deliciousness that comes with that, makes her feel highly desirable.

Bibi’ Macron (the current French president’s wife, her real name is Brigitte, but, really…there can only be one Brigitte. B.B.) is an older woman who is extremely comfortable in her own skin. I don’t hear anyone here, in France, mention the age difference between Monsieur Macron & her lovely self, (at 64, she is 24 years his senior ) Bibi is a woman & that alone makes her beautiful. It’s not about fat, thin, OLD, ugly or pretty! It’s simply about being a woman & everything gorgeously amazing that embodies, femininity, strength & gentleness.brigitte-bardot-396155_960_720

So, NEVER compare yourself to other women. Always ADMIRE.

 

 

 

 

Inside a French Woman’s Armoire (wardrobe)

A French woman’s wardrobe is NOT a mess. It’s not full of clothes. It’s quite the opposite, so those classic, timeless & oh, so chic pieces can hang nicely, instead of being all bunched together or left to lie, as a discarded pile, on the wardrobe floor. French women are not impulse buyers. They buy timeless, classic & elegant pieces & because they do this, their clothes mix & match ‘parfait,’ perfectly. Less is more, that is the French woman’s clothing motto. If they are buying a trench coat, then they will buy a trench coat &, not be found in a shoe store, impulsively buying something they don’t need. French women shop with purpose. The type of classic pieces that French women wear is something I’m going to focus on in this blog. I’ve had a big messy, ‘can’t find anything I’m looking for in it wardrobe,’ & I’ve come to admire & appreciate the simplicity & style of a French woman’s armoire.

 

Its purpose; to look & feel great at the ready! I believe this answers that much-asked question, what is IT about French women? Well, that certain ‘je ne sais quoi,’ is, in actual fact, confidence. Clothes make a woman feel confident. A French woman’s wardrobe is a confident one & she knows it. She doesn’t spend a whole week lamenting that she can’t find anything to wear to that up & coming dinner party! For one thing, her wardrobe is not a messy, bulging, everything shoved & crammed ‘somewhere’ in ‘there,’ disaster zone. Oh, non! non! non! Whether it’s a dressy occasion or a casual affair, she knows she has just the right little ensemble, not ‘tucked away,’ or bunched together, but hanging nicely in her armoire & that makes all the difference.