Category: RESOURCES

Looking for a Good Book to Read?

Looking for a Good Book to Read?

Aging Abundantly book clubAging Abundantly Book Club Update

The Aging Abundantly Book Club on Facebook is going strong.  We currently have 221 members and always welcome more! It’s a closed group and I monitor it to make sure that there are no unsavory characters lurking about, or spammers.  In the past we have selected a group book and collectively read and discussed it. This month we are enjoying choosing a book individually and sharing it with the group. Mini-groups are forming around multiple books and it seems to be working really well . Some people read faster than others, and tastes vary so there’s more involvement. Thank you all who participate it and keep it a lively and interesting place to visit!

Here are a few of the books we’ve read and have been reading. Join our Facebook book club group and read what members are saying about them. (To join: Follow the link above and request membership. I will add you in!)

Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, death, and hope in a Mumbai undercity by Katherine Boo

You’ll Enjoy It When You Get There: The Stories of Elizabeth Taylor (New York Review Books Classics)

I Will Not Live An Unlived Life: Reclaiming Passion and Purpose by Dawna Markova


Still Alice by Lisa Genova

The Invention of Wings: With Notes (Oprah’s Book Club 2.0 3) by Sue Monk Kidd


The Goldfinch: A Novel (Pulitzer Prize for Fiction) by Donna Tartt

The Girl on the Train: A Novel by Paula Hawkins

Where’d You Go, Bernadette: A Novel by Maria Semple

My New Favorite Blogs

My New Favorite Blogs

This painting is by my new favorite artist Z. L. Feng Click on picture for more.
This painting is by my new favorite artist Z. L. Feng Click on picture for more.

“ When it’s time to suffer, you should suffer; when it’s time to cry, you should cry. Cry completely. Cry until there are no more tears and then recognize in your exhaustion that you’re alive. The sun still rises and sets.  The seasons come and go. Absolutely nothing remains the same and that includes suffering. When the suffering ends wisdom begins to raise the right questions.”

Seido Ray RonciThe Examined Life

 I found this quote on my new favorite blog: One Rich Life by JZR, a sixty-something woman whose writing resonates with me. She’s a published author, poet and artist who offers a deep and rich look into her life and life in general.

AskJillDavis recently launched her blog. Jill is a dear friend and a one-of-a-kind Life Coach. Her specialty is “personalities”  and if you are looking for some help with relationships, boss, children, co-workers, etc., she’s the go-to person in my book. She offers great tools and training and is a very inspiring speaker.

Speaking from the Heart, Laurie Buchanan’s blog, always gives me something to think about!

Laurie Buchanan is a Holistic Health Practitioner—Board Certified with the American Association of Drugless Practitioners (AADP)—and a Transformational Life Coach. Her areas of interest include energy medicine, inner alchemy, spiritual awareness, writing, and laughter. Definitely laughter!
Fifty, not Frumpy

Fifty, not Frumpy

(A Note from Dorothy: Every once in a while during my online travels and ongoing conversations with women over fifty, I run across an exciting new voice. This was my experience when I stumbled upon Susan Street’s page on Facebook, FiftyNotFrumpy. She provides a breath of fresh air for women who are tired of trying to find their way around the fashion world and what it seems to offer the older woman.  If you want to be able to reach into our closet and pull out something you like and feel comfortable wearing, visit her website and fan her Facebook page. Let her help you begin the process of midlife fashion self-discovery. She is a valuable guide and provides a relaxed, comfortable and open minded venue for dialogue, examining options, and considering guidelines that may work for you. I did!)

 

FIFTY, NOT FRUMPY

by Susan Street

As I emerged from a more than ten year total immersion into starting and building my company, I realized that my sense of style had all but vanished… not to mention I Fashion for the woman over fiftyhad gained more than forty pounds. After I lost the weight I was forced to start shopping for a new wardrobe but I quickly realized I had no idea what was appropriate for me at fifty-five. The amazing thing was that I had worked in the fashion industry for most of my adult life but I was no longer comfortable with anything I saw in stores or in fashion magazines. When I tried clothes on, I often laughed out loud but many times I became so frustrated, I left very depressed and of course without buying anything.

You may think that shopping for a whole new wardrobe would be fun, but I can tell you it is expensive, frustrating and traumatic. As the President of a successful company which contributes to the community, I interact with other professionals and city leaders often. I have a large circle of friends and I attend many fund raisers, Symphonies, and dinner parties. I get dressed to go to my office at my warehouse every day. I don’t have an unlimited budget so I wanted to invest in pieces that would work well in many of these situations. Projecting confidence, easy elegance and sophistication is a tall order for a woman who spent the last ten years in jeans alone in her home office.

I began studying the women whose style I respect. I developed a formula for shopping and dressing which allowed me to get the most for my wardrobe investment. This formula included an honest evaluation of my new postmenopausal body and the styles that are flattering and comfortable for me to wear now. My look often includes a jacket or cardigan left mostly open with an interesting scarf or necklace to draw the eye upward and away from my thick waistline. I wear slim pants or a straight fitted skirt with heels in a nude color to make my short thick calves look longer.  If I wear a dress it has wrap effect at the waist and a flattering neckline. After doing quite a bit of research, shopping and self evaluation, I can now get dressed quickly for any event. I feel confident and happy going out to dinner with friends and can fully enjoy being there.

At some point in this journey of rediscovery I thought about all the other women in my age group who have given their all to their children, aging parents or like me, to building a business. You may finally be ready to start living your life and doing the things you enjoy but then you realize you don’t know what to wear anymore. I thought perhaps sharing my journey might help others gain confidence so I started a Facebook page and named it “Fifty, not Frumpy”. I was quickly overwhelmed with the popularity of the page and with the emotional emails I received from my readers. Both men and women wrote to say how much they looked forward to my tips, the outfits I create on Polyvore.com and pictures of my own outfits. I added a web site and linked it to a blog with the same name in 2012. (FiftynotFrumpy.com)

My perspective is to share what I have learned about current fashion as it applies to women over fifty and to be receptive to the comments of my readers. It isn’t only the best outfits I share with them. I still make some goofs but I post those pictures as well so that we can discuss why it isn’t such a good look for me. I respect my readers immensely. They are honest with me and mostly positive. When my readers disagree with me it becomes a learning experience for all of us. We discuss everything from the pros and cons of trends to foundation garments to lip stick and shoe heel heights. Many of my outfits and blog posts are a result of letters from my readers. I love hearing that a reader used some of the tips we’ve discussed to choose an outfit for a special occasion which made them feel confident and happy.

 

 

Susan Street is the editor of Fiftynotfrumpy.com and the President of the Vintage Jewelry Supplies Company, Inc. (VintageJewelrySupplies.com)

Visit her website and follow her on Facebook for great fashion tips.

Create a Support Network in Your Hour of Need

Create a Support Network in Your Hour of Need

Online SupportPlanner from Caring Bridge
Interactive online calendar allows easy scheduling

Are you , or someone you know, facing or dealing with a health crisis? Are you desperate for a little extra help and support but don’t know where to turn?  Now, you don’t have to go it alone.

Ten years ago my husband had a heart attack. We had two high school age children who were knee deep in extracurricular activities, part time jobs, and college searches. My husband and I supported our family with our home based business, that on the best days required 24/7 attention from both of us. There was not time or energy in our days for what we were already doing let alone to deal with the extra demands of a sudden health crisis.  I didn’t know where to turn.

We called on a few family members to help out, who graciously availed themselves to us, but it was not an orderly, easy coordination of efforts and at times seemed more effort than help. Who can think, plan and organize at a time like that? I couldn’t.  CaringBridge.com did not exist at that time, at least in my world. It would have made all the difference.

CaringBridge.com is a non-profit organization that understands the difficulties inherent in coping with a life crisis. Its mission is to “amplify the love, hope and compassion in the world, making each health journey easier”.  The evidence is clear that it is fulfilling its mission.

The SupportPlanner is CaringBridge’s primary tool to assist people facing a health crisis such as the one my husband and I faced.  It is an online tool that makes coordination of support efforts thorough, easy  and efficient. It provides a centralized, virtual location to organize helpful tasks, such as the delivering of a meal, transportation, taking care of pets, etc. Only people who are invited by the user to view the planner can access the calendar and sign up for a task, ensuring privacy for the parties involved.

Several months ago, my friend Sandy was facing major surgery. She lived alone and was uneasy about the six week recovery period she was facing, when she would be unable to drive. Her sister had heard about CaringBridge.com and before Sandy even entered the hospital she had signed coordinated a full spectrum of support volunteers using The SupportPlanner and she did it all through email.  She coordinated meals, visits, errands, and drivers and Sandy received the support of a dozen well wishers throughout recovery. The support was a tremendous gift to Sandy and, I believe, resulted in a quicker, less painful recovery.

In honor of National Cargiver’s Month, I encourage you to visit CaringBridge.com and learn a little about what they have to offer.  You never know when you, or someone you care about might need support.

 

November is National Caregiver’s Month

November is National Caregiver’s Month

Support for the caregiver has grown by leaps and bounds since I cared for my aging parents ten plus years ago. It was a frustrating and lonely road at that and my siblings and I spent many hours trying to figure out what to do and how to do it. Now, information and advice lies around every corner and its unfolding has been thrilling to watch.

Caregivers, both paid and unpaid, provide an incredibly valuable service to our loved ones and deserve the extra attention they are now receiving. My heart goes out especially to family members who, by choice or circumstance, have taken on the role of caregiver to a loved one and who with little, if any, experience or training are carried through by sheer act of will, love and commitment. They deserve all the support and appreciate we can offer them.

Taking advantage of the support options available online and off can make an enormous difference to the individual caregiver. Without the support now available, these individuals would likely arrive on the other side of the caregiving experience in a battered and wounded state, suffering from burnout, compassion fatigue and perhaps more seriously long term illnesses.  I know I did. We are fortunately much more aware of the pitfalls and fallout of caregiving and while this awareness may not erase the hardship, it certainly can ease it.

If you are a caregiver or know someone who is, I would encourage you to read through the following list of caregiver support services and share them with other caregivers. You don’t have to go it alone. You can benefit from other’s experiences and expertise and make your job a little bit easier.

Throughout November, I will continue to highlight various caregiving organizations that I have come in contact with and will appreciate any feedback you have to offer.

CAREGIVING BLOGS AND WEBSITES