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Are you ready for a culinary treat? I’m going to share details about the delicacies of Old Québec City. For those who are foodies, you’ll be glad to know that in 2015 Condé Nast Traveler ranked Québec City among the top 20 world’s best food cities.

Luxury Dining At Fairmont Le Château Frontenac
If you haven’t read my previous post about my visit to Québec City you can find it here. I was in this charming Canadian province last month to attend the 2018 Women In Travel Summit, also known as WITS18.

The Champlain Restaurant has beautiful views of the St. Lawrence River.

The conference was held at the luxurious Fairmont Le Château Frontenac, the most iconic hotel in the world. Le Château Frontenac has its own collection of noteworthy restaurants, including the elegant Champlain Restaurant with its modern cuisine; The 1608 Wine and Cheese Bar with an incredible selection of cheeses; Bistro Le Sam for a casual lunch and dinner; and Place Dufferin featuring sumptuous breakfast buffets and a la carte menus with seasonal ingredients. All offer exceptional views of the St. Lawrence River –  one of the most prized features of Le Château. (Note: If you cannot view the video below click here.)

Dining at Champlain Restaurant at Fairmont Le Château Frontenac - YouTube

A Food Tour Of Old Québec City
I had a chance to discover the delicacies of Old Québec City during a  WITS18 excursion with Tours Voir Quebec Food Tour. The 2.5 hour walking tour took us to popular shops and restaurants where we sampled traditional and local specialties.

Tournebroche Restaurant is known for its honey.

Our guide Robert gave us a history lesson as we strolled. “Québec is a native word and means where the river gets narrow. Canada means small village,” said Robert.

Our tour guide Robert shared the history of Old Quebec City.

He recommended some favorite restaurants as we passed: Continental for dinner (which a Canadian friend also praised); Aux Anciens Canadiens for lunch; Le Clarendon Hotel for drinks and jazz music; Paillard Boulangerie for pastries and coffee; and Chez Boulay, a casual bistro.

Aux Anciens Canadiens Restaurant is good for lunch.

Our first stop on the tour was La Buche, where we drank shots of Kalibu, a legendary Québec alcoholic beverage, accompanied with cold smoked salmon topped with maple syrup. Kalibu is also consumed as a hot drink.

Imbibe at La Buche!

Second was Le Tournebroche, an organic farm to table bistro. Honey is one of their specialties. They use their own honey in many ways — on ice cream, in tea, and mixed with fruit. Their menu focuses on organic, local, gluten-free food. Supposedly they have a really good organic burger and vegan entrees. They also have an extensive wine list.

Tournebroche is known for its organic menus.

Our group of boomer bloggers enjoyed dinner at Tournebroche on Saturday night. I ordered the Poulet Bio De Charlevoix, one of their specialties. It was so good, so good, so good.

The roasted poulet at Tournebroche is served with a stack of baked potato slices.

Next was Le Moine Échanson, an organic wine bar & bistro. Daniel, the wine master explained how to pair wine and food. “It’s all about sharing and caring and enjoying food and people at the table,” said Daniel. “Have a sip of wine. Have a taste of the food. Then have another taste of the food and see how the wine tastes afterwards.” His wine bar focuses on the wine first. They try to use as much local food on their menus as available. We sampled Daniel’s favorite Abruzzi wine from Italy and paired it with cod fritters. Both were so good, so good, so good.

Daniel taught us about pairing wine and food.

At Maple Delights & Company, our host Sasha told us about the 2000 family producers of maple syrup and about how maple syrup is made from the maple trees in Canada. We tasted golden syrup and dark maple syrup, maple fudge, maple pearls and maple tea. It was so sweet, so sweet, so sweet.

Maple syrup is a tradition in Quebec and other parts of Canada.

At Le Snack Bar, I had my first bite of Québec poutine, a quintessential Canadian snack food. It’s fries, topped with cheese curds, topped with gravy. It wasn’t one of my favorites. I like my fries with ketchup – thank you very much.

Oh Canadian Poutine!

At our next stop, Crêperie le Billig, I devoured the French-style ham and cheese crepes made with buckwheat and a touch of apple cider.

Buckwheat crepes at Creperie Le Billig are so good.

Our finale was at Chocolaterie Érico, a chocolate museum and shop. We tasted chocolate with ginger, chocolate with onion, and chocolate caramels. I bought some dark chocolates to bring home to my boyfriend L.

Who can resist the handmade chocolates at Musee Du Chocolat?

During my walk the next day, I retraced the food tour and stopped in at J.A. Moisan, the oldest grocery store in North America. It is definitely worth a visit. It’s fun to peruse the shelves with likely thousands of gourmet products. You can also sit at tables for lunch or relax with a coffee and dessert. I also stopped at two well-known Canadian clothing stores – Simons and Roots.

J.A. Moisan is the oldest grocery store in North America.

All in all, it was a fun and satisfying time discovering the different culinary and cultural traditions of Québec. Did my post make you hungry for more? Hope you can plan a visit sometime to sample the delights and delicacies of Old Québec City.

Coming Up
There’s more to share about my wellness tour, yoga session, and lunch at Le Monastère Des Augustines. Ooh, ooh, ooh, I promise to tell you the story in an upcoming post.

Judi

The post Popular Places To Dine On The Delicacies of Old Québec City appeared first on A Boomers Life After 50.

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When I was in college I dreamed about having a career in fashion. I loved clothes, fabrics, sewing, and reading the fashion magazines. The September issue of Vogue was like my fashion bible each fall.

Like other young women in their 20s, I went to New York City after graduation in 1979, lived the single life in the city for several years, working as an editor during the day and going out with friends on weekend nights. While my fantasies of being a famous designer never materialized, I remained faithful to the world of beauty and style. In fact, I just renewed my Vogue subscription for the next two years. Once a fashionista, always a fashionista.

After college graduation I moved to NYC and dreamed of becoming a famous fashion designer. I designed a baby quilt for a fabric company.

A Legendary Fixture In The World of Fashion
That’s why, even though I’m a yoga instructor now and wear leggings most days, I so enjoyed previewing The Gospel According To André, the new documentary about the legendary and flamboyant fashion writer André Leon Talley. As the press release says: The Gospel According to André takes viewers on an emotional journey from André’s roots growing up in the segregated Jim Crow South to become one of the most influential tastemakers and fashion curators of our times.”

The Gospel According To Andre is an inspiring and uplifting documentary. (Image courtesy of Magnolia Pictures.)

The film showcases André’s childhood growing up with his grandmother and the influence that the Black Church had on his youth. From his upbringing in Durham, North Carolina, where he first found Vogue in his public library, the award-winning director Kim Novak takes you to Brown University in Rhode Island, where André got his masters in French literature, met artsy friends at the Rhode Island Institute of Design (RISD), and where he gained the freedom and liberation that propelled him into his eventual career.

Andre always had style even in his younger years. (Photo courtesy of Magnolia Pictures.)

It was in 1974 that he moved to NYC, a time when fashion designers like Halston and Yves St. Laurent were celebrities and Studio 54 was the place to be at night. He worked at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET), helping another fashion legend, Diana Vreeland, put together the early Costume Institute Exhibitions. She was a major mentor to André and helped him get his first writing job at Interview magazine, where he met well-known fashion designers and other artists.

Andre broke barriers as an African-American male in the fashion industry. (Photo courtesy of Magnolia Pictures.)

He broke barriers as a black man in fashion at Interview and later at publications like Women’s Wear Daily, W and eventually Vogue.

The Gospel According To André
Quoting designer Marc Jacob’s words in the documentary, “André is larger than life. Just do it, Think it. Wear it…He makes people feel the fashion.” He literally is larger than life when he puts huge caftans over his 6 foot plus frame. It’s fun to view the archival footage  from the most glamorous moments in fashion history, follow him to New York, Paris and Milan shows, and listen to his commentary.

His gospel is inspiring. Here are a few of André’s quotes:

André says, “I don’t live for fashion, I live for beauty and style. Fashion is fleeting, style remains.
André says, “I think that beauty comes in many forms, it can be a flower, it can be a gesture. It can be so many things.”
André says, “Voltaire says one must cultivate one’s own garden. You must also create your own universe and share it with people you love.”
André says, “When you have two bracelets it means you’re wealthy.”

The Gospel According To Andre - Official Trailer - YouTube

(Note: If you cannot see the trailer above click here.)

André On Aging
At 68, André is still going strong. Although he says that some days he feels 108 and some days he feels 32. (Me too André. Me too!)

Andre at his grandmother’s house in Durham. (Photo courtesy of Magnolia Pictures.)

His philosophy on aging is simple: “I think the most important thing at a certain age is that you sit back and you think seriously of how you achieved a certain success in your life and you think back from where you came,” says André as you see him driving back to his hometown of Durham. He adds “I always think you need to keep cultivating your own garden.”

Two Thumbs Up For The Gospel According To André
My rating is two thumbs up for this lively documentary. It was produced by the same team that brought viewers The First Monday in May, about the annual MET Gala, and Page One: Inside the New York Times, two of my other favorite documentaries.

I encourage all my fellow fashionistas to go see this film. Yes, yes, yes. Go, go, go! Now!

Judi

The post Fashionistas Will Love “The Gospel According To André” appeared first on A Boomers Life After 50.

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In early May, I visited Québec City. It was my first visit to Canada’s very charming and mostly French-speaking Québec province. I was there to attend the 2018 Women In Travel Summit, also known as WITS18. WITS is one of the world’s top events for women travel influencers to connect and build sisterhood and network with others in the travel industry.

It was fun to be in the company of 400+ females of all ages who love to travel. It was great to meet and greet fellow boomer travel bloggers face-to-face, especially those I only previously met virtually in our Facebook Group. It was amazing to stay at Fairmont Le Château Frontenac, the most iconic hotel in the world, and to explore the history, culture, and food of the oldest city in North America.

It was fun to stay in a Québec landmark like the Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac.

A City With Many Accolades
With so much to see and do in Québec City, coupled with the French language and European ambiance, it was a perfect spot to grab a few days away without a long flight abroad. Plus the exchange rate with the Canadian dollar is really good right now, almost a 20 percent discount!

Samvel de Champlain founded Québec in 1608.

Québec City is a town with many accolades. In 2016, Leading Culture Destinations Traveller’s Awards honored Québec City with the Culture City of the Year Award which recognizes the most stimulating and imaginative cities for the cultural nomad to visit. The other nominees were Lyon (France) and Los Angeles (USA). Ooh, ooh, ooh, I’ll be heading to Lyon in a few weeks with my BFF L for our 60th celebration. Will tell you all about it when I return.

Quebec is the oldest city in North America.

Being a foodie, I was glad to read that in 2015 Condé Nast Traveler ranked Québec City among the top 20 world’s best food cities. I’ll be sharing more about our Québec City food tour in a future post.

Crepes are a popular menu item in Québec.

Staying In A True Life Castle
This year, Fairmont Le Château Frontenac is celebrating its 125th anniversary, so it felt extra special to stay there. It was almost like being in a fairy tale setting.

A view from my window at the Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac.

Maxime, the marketing manager, gave us a tour of the building with its 7.5 miles of corridors, 2,000 windows, many with extraordinary views of the St. Lawrence River or the dramatic architecture of Old Québec. Maxime pointed out the central tower which is almost 260 feet high, the copper roof, and the Château Frontenac brick – designed especially for the hotel.

Views from the hotel of the St. Lawrence River, the boardwalk, and winter slide.

He shared its history, from inception to highlights of the $75 million revitalization and modernization in 2014, including the renovation of guest rooms (one of which we were staying in), transformation of the main lobby, expansion of the banquet areas, introduction of three new restaurant concepts, and addition of an urban spa. There’s also a beehive on the roof.

The Rose Staircase at Le Chateau Frontenac has a magnificent chandelier.

Maxime told us about famous personalities who have graced the Fairmont Le Château Frontenac. He showed us the luxurious suite designated in honor of the official visit of Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh, and another suite occupied by Princess Grace of Monaco and Prince Rainier III during their presidency of the Queen’s Ball.

Princess Grace of Monaco stayed at Le Chateau Frontenac.

Maxime said that the hotel played a major role in significant political meetings. For example, in August of 1943 and again in September of 1944, Le Château Frontenac became the center of the Québec Conferences of World War II involving President Franklin D. Roosevelt, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Canadian Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King. The heads of the Allies held talks that proved decisive to prosecuting the war to a successful conclusion.

Important diplomatic meetings took place at Le Chateau Frontenac during WWII.

Since we were at a conference, we didn’t have a chance to partake in any restaurant meals, but all the restaurants looked divine. The romantic Champlain Restaurant with its modern cuisine and The 1608 with a beautiful bar overlooking the St. Lawrence River, were my two favorites. I think I may need to return in 2019. Maybe I’ll visit with my boyfriend L for our 10th anniversary.

The Champlain Dining Room was completely renovated.

It Was A WITS and Wanderful Weekend
From Friday evening to Sunday afternoon, my days were packed with WITS activities. There were panel discussions and breakout sessions focused on trends in travel, techniques for improving travel writing, ways to enhance social media presence, tips to become a better influencer, and more. There were travel industry representatives pitching their cities and vendors selling their travel-related products and services. Afternoons were reserved for mentoring and networking with other influencers and tourism boards.

The opening night of WITS18 was held at an Armoury.

Friday evening was the opening night party at the newly renovated historic Québec City Armoury. It was themed around Québec’s popular Winter Carnival, held each year in February. (Note: It’s going to be held February 8-17, 2019 if you want to book ahead.) Bonhomme Carnavale, the mascot of the Carnival made an appearance and catering was done by the Fairmont Le Château Frontenac. It was a lively event filled with dancing and good cheer.

Celebrating at WITS18 Opening Night Reception.

I was impressed with the Wanderful organization that hosts WITS. It is an international membership community of independent, adventurous, globally minded women who travel. Members gather in 22 chapters around the world, host one another abroad, and share their best tips to help more and more women travel. They also host WITx community summits in different cities throughout the year and Wanderfest, a smaller gathering for women travelers.

Marissa Sutera, left, is Conference Director, and Beth Santos, right, is the founder and CEO of Wanderful and the Women in Travel Summit.

I so enjoyed WITS18 that I bought an early bird ticket for WITS19 to be held in Portland, Maine, (another new city for me) on May 3 – 5, 2019. Check it out and maybe you’ll want to join me.

Bonding With Female Boomer Travelers
While the majority of attendees were millennials — they sure do travel — there were a smaller group of boomer influencers in the crowd. We tended to bond together and share our stories. I encourage you to visit the blogs, social channels, podcasts, and Twitter chats of my new friends from WITS18:

Getting to know my boomer blogger friends, Jan, center, and Suzanne, right.

Boomeresque, Baby Boomer Travel for the Body and Mind by Suzanne Fluhr
food travelist , ambassadors of world food tourism, and #foodtravelchat (on Twitter on Wednesdays at 8pm ET) by Sue Reddel
France Travel Tips – Unique Travel Experiences and Tips in France by Jan Chung
All The Write Places by Pamela Dittmer McKuen
Tripwellgal.com by Elaine J. Masters
A Passionate Dream Life with Linda Beach
Empty Nestopia, “rediscovering life through travel and adventure” with Donna Long
Osowired.com, “discovering great food, festivals and travel experiences, one bit at a time” with Allison R. Fraser

More To Come
There’s more to share about my wellness tour, yoga session, and lunch at Le Monastère Des Augustines, located in the historic wings of the Hôtel-Dieu de Québec monastery.  Following in the heritage of the Augustinian Sisters who devoted themselves to caring for the body and soul, its holistic retreats and programs promote healthy living. Once you hear about it you’ll want to book a stay. I loved the calm vibes and can’t wait to go back.

Doing yoga at Le Monastere Des Augustines was a highlight of my Quebec visit.

In addition, I’ll showcase some of the restaurants we sampled and tell you about my food tour, including some of Quebec’s cuisine specialities — crepes, maple syrup, and my first taste of Québec’s ever-popular poutine.

For now, it’s time to say adieu.

Judi

The post My First Visit To Canada’s Charming Québec City appeared first on A Boomers Life After 50.

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My Viking journey on the luxurious Viking Star ocean liner to the Cities of Antiquity & The Holy Land, was about to come to an end. My boyfriend L and I were traveling courtesy of Viking Cruises.* Our last stop was Civitavecchia, the port of Rome. We would spend our final day touring my favorite Italian city. L had never been to Rome. I was so excited to share the famous landmarks, piazzas, and most of all the pizza.

“I can’t wait for you to see the spectacular sites in Rome,” I told L as we prepared for our 10 hour excursion. “I know you will be exhausted after walking around town but you can rest on our plane ride home tomorrow.”

I was glad to show Rome to my boyfriend L, a first-time visitor.

The Large Port of Civitavecchia
“Ciao everyone,” said our guide Monica. “We are in Civitavecchia, a port built more than 1000 years ago. It takes about 90 minutes to get to Rome.” On our way, Monica provided a history lesson.

Arriving at our last port in Italy.

Civitavecchia is a large city for Italy. It means the ‘old city.’ During World War II it was bombed to ruins, ” said Monica. We approached the 255 miles long Tiber River, which divides Rome into two halves and flows out into the Mediterranean Sea. We drove by the countryside lush with olive trees and vineyards. Tuscany is only an hour from the port.

The countryside in Civitavecchia is lush.

Entering the Ancient City of Rome
The bus dropped us off inside the big Roman walls which surround the city. “Roma is 2770 years old,” said Monica. “The ancient city of Rome was built on seven hills. Rome was not bombed during WWII because it is the sacred home of the Pope,”

According to Monica, 2025 is the next holy year. It happens every 25 years. “They might have 30 million people visit for this special year.” If you want to visit during the next holy year, better start planning now!

A Visit To The Colosseum
We began our visit at the Colosseum, one of the most prominent amphitheaters in the Roman world. We climbed the steps and entered the arena where 80,000 spectators once sat to watch gladiator contests, executions, and imperial ceremonies.

The outside of the Colosseum was recently cleaned and restored for $25 million euro.

Monica explained the seating hierarchy: “The emperor sat near the cross. The lowest floor was for politicians. Second floor was for the aristocrats. Upper floors were for the towns people. Women had to sit up at the highest floors, separate from the men.”

Seating at the Colosseum was a hierarchy.

Walking Tour of The Famous Sites
Even though I’ve visited Rome many times, I never tire of the touristy sites. Plus, this time I was seeing it with L, and it was all new to him.

We walked up and down the 136 Spanish Steps. L sat on the Steps to rest while I did my fashionista window shopping nearby at the haute couture boutiques on Via Condotti.

The Spanish Steps were crowded with tourists.

We passed the Trevi Fountain, where tourists were throwing coins. “One coin is to come back to Rome. Two coins you want to fall in love. Hold the coin in your right hand, turn your back and and throw over your left shoulder,” said Monica. (Important tip from Monica: The Caffe Grecco pizza and gelato shop to the left of the Trevi has four women’s bathrooms. It’s good to know when walking around the city if you need to make a pit stop. The place looked like it has good pizza too.)

The Trevi Fountain was very crowded too.

It’s fun to go window shopping at the haute couture boutiques.

We went inside the Pantheon which is now a Christian church. “Look at the dome,” said Monica. “It is the first dome ever build in the world. The opening in the dome is called the oculus.” The tomb of Margherita is here. A pizza is named after her! The painter Raphael has his tomb here too.

Looking up at the Pantheon oculus.

An Afternoon in Piazza Navona
Our afternoon included free time to enjoy more of Rome. My knowledge of the city kicked in.  We spent time walking around Piazza Navona, with its beautiful fountain in the center of the square. We looked at the paintings for sale by local artists.

Piazza Navona is a great place to go to buy paintings by local artists.

I made L dine on authentic Italian pizza at Serafini alla Pace, a cafe right near the Piazza. “Isn’t it the best pizza you’ve ever had?” I asked. L smiled as he took a bite of the sausage and mushroom pie. It was so good, so good, so good!

There’s nothing better than eating authentic Italian pizza in Italy.

After lunch, we walked to Campo de’ Fiori, a market square where vendors sell fresh flowers, fruits, fish, and vegetables. I took L to my favorite bakery, Il Fornaio, to buy some biscotti. Weary from our walk, L and I wandered back to our meeting spot in the Piazza and sat outside at a cafe the rest of the afternoon. Sipping cappuccino and sharing gelato was a great way to finish off our day.

Il Fornaio is my favorite bakery in Rome.

Yummy Sfogliatella pastries.

Beautiful bouquets are sold at the Campo de’ Fiori market.

We left Rome via the North Western side of the city. On our return, we passed by St. Peter’s Basilica and The Vatican State. While we didn’t see all of Rome, nor could we in one day or two or three, I felt like L had gotten a good sampling of my favorite Italian city. “Did you like Rome?” I asked before L began to doze off. He shook his head and his lips formed a smile. “We’ll have to come back again. Maybe for our 10th anniversary next year,” I said, waving arrivederci as the coach pulled away.

St. Peter’s from afar.

Saying Goodbye To The Viking Star
It was our last evening on the Viking Star. Despite some weather ups and downs, it had been a glorious two weeks on my first-ever luxury ocean cruise.

My boyfriend L and I had a very memorable trip on the Viking Star.

“At Viking, we want to exceed your expectations,” said the cruise director.  Yes, yes, yes, you surely did! To say adieu, team member Kyle sang “This Is The Moment” from Jekyll and Hyde. The words were a fitting send off:

This is the moment, forget all the odds
This day or never I’ll sit forever with the gods.
When I look back I will recall, moment for moment
This was the moment,
The greatest moment of them all.

Thank you Team Viking. I truly will remember and savor all the greatest moments from the Viking Star.

Judi

P.S. In case you missed my earlier posts about my Viking Ocean Cruise, check them out below:

My First-Ever Ocean Cruise On The Luxurious “Viking Star”
My Viking Journey: A World of Ancient Treasures in Athens ”
My Viking Journey: A Visit To The Beautiful Island of Mykonos
My Viking Journey: A Visit To Cyprus & The Goddess of Love
My Viking Journey: A Day To Remember in Old Jerusalem
My Viking Journey: Sightseeing In The Beautiful City Of Haifa
My Viking Journey: The Secrets of the Ancient City of Acre
My Viking Journey: Peaceful & Pleasant Days At Sea

*Disclosure of Material Connection: This is a “sponsored post.” Viking Cruises provided me with a complimentary press trip on the Cities of Antiquity and Holy Lands Ocean Cruise. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

The post My Viking Journey: A Grand Finale In My Favorite City of Rome appeared first on A Boomers Life After 50.

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May is Bladder Cancer Awareness Month. It’s time to share my personal story. Bladder cancer is the sixth most common cancer (and 11th most common for women) – a cancer I never knew existed until I was told six months ago that “you have bladder cancer.” Not something I wanted to hear on the eve of my 60th birthday.

You Have Bladder Cancer
I asked my urologist Dr. F three times if he really said the “C” word. Mind you, I had never seen  a urologist before.

“Did you say cancer?” I asked Dr. F after my surgery to remove a tumor from my bladder. “Yes, it looks like cancer,” said Dr. F.

Orange ribbons are the symbol of bladder cancer. Photo courtesy of BCAN.org.

Why me? Men are more likely to develop bladder cancer than women. I am not a smoker and during my full-time career I wasn’t in an environment where I was exposed to certain harmful substances — two of the risk factors. According to BladderCancer.net, people who are older are at a higher risk for developing bladder cancer—around 90% of people diagnosed with it are over the age of 55. I’m over 50, guess that’s me! “You live in New Jersey. It’s the chemical capital of the U.S,.” said my friend L. Ugh, that’s right!  

More men are diagnosed with bladder cancer than women. Stats from BCAN.org.

“You mean it’s cancer?” I asked Dr. F again. “Yes, we have to wait for the biopsy report to determine next steps.” Those were the longest two weeks ever, especially since one of the weeks I had a catheter attached to my bladder to facilitate healing. Ugh! I was scared. I was really scared. Not able to do yoga, I used all my mindfulness meditation tools and techniques to calm my thoughts.

“Are you sure it’s cancer?” I asked the third time. Dr. F shook his head up and down. Thankfully, my biopsy showed that my bladder cancer was stage T1a, non-invasive. The good news is my tumor had not penetrated the bladder wall or muscle. I didn’t need any additional treatment for now, just scopes every three months going forward for a year, every six months in year two, and then yearly for the rest of my life — as long as another tumor or tumors don’t return. The bad news is bladder cancer has a high rate of return — 50 – 80 percent. Ugh!

Finding It Challenging To Diagnose
Flashback to summer 2017. My diagnosis took months to confirm. First there were the frequent urinary tract infections (UTIs). Then there was the speck of blood in my urine. Then it went away. Then another UTI  Then it cleared.

“Blood can appear in the urine when you have a UTI,” said my general practitioner (GP) Dr. S.

Multiple antibiotics were prescribed to clear up my UTIs. But the frequency remained. At night, I was peeing almost every hour, my bladder never fully emptying.

Risk Factors for bladder cancer. (BCAN.org)

There was constant lower abdominal pain too. I attributed the pain to my irritable bowl (IBS) acting up from all the antibiotics. I had a colonoscopy to make sure my colon was okay. “All clear in the colon,” said my gastroenterologist Dr. S.

“I think we need to send you to a urologist,” said my GP Dr. S.

“Your urine is clear. You have an overactive bladder,” said the initial urologist Dr. C. “Take these pills and let me know if they help you.” I tried the pills but they gave me such headaches that I stopped taking them.

Seeing Red On The Aegean Sea
In October, I left for my Viking Ocean Cruise. Once out on the beautiful blue of the Aegean Sea and two days into my 15 day voyage, there in my urine sat three large red blood clots. I was scared. I was really scared. 

The signs and symptoms of bladder cancer. (BCAN.org)

Dr. Z and the nurses on board the Viking Star were amazing. Dr. Z calmed my anxiety and gave me antibiotics. He scheduled an appointment for me at the hospital in Rhodes, Greece. The incredible doctor Z was able to secure a spot on a Sunday!

The urologist in Rhodes suggested I get a cystoscopy (scope of my bladder) upon my return home. He said it might be a tumor.

“Do you want to go home early from the cruise?” asked Dr. Z. I decided to continue on with the cruise and adjusted my excursions appropriately. “If there’s bad news down the road, I want to see Israel,” I said to my boyfriend L. I was scared. I was really scared. But seeing the Holy Land brought spiritual comfort.

I also want to make a plug for Allianz Insurance. I bought the insurance prior to my trip and never thought I would need it. When you are traveling abroad it is very important to purchase insurance that provides healthcare. You never know when you are going to need it. The team at Allianz reimbursed almost all of my expenses when I submitted my claims upon returning to the States.

Looking Back and Looking Ahead
Once home from my cruise, after another UTI had cleared and a cystoscopy was performed it was confirmed: “I see the tumor,” said Dr. F.  Prior to surgery I had scans of my kidneys, my uterus and ovaries, and an X-ray of my lungs. Everything was clear. Yay!

The surgery was scheduled for December, two weeks before my 60th birthday. I feel lucky that my bladder cancer was noninvasive. I’m glad I listened to my body and when I noticed something not right, I persisted and went to the doctor until the culprit – the cancer – was found, and found early before it had spread. I’m glad it’s out of my body now and hope it never returns.

Bladder Cancer statistics. (BCAN.org)

Each morning, I take my cranberry supplements to hopefully help keep my bladder in good health. I drink plenty of water and always find a bathroom when I have to pee – which is still often being post-menopausal – but not as often as it used to be. (BTW, I don’t have an overactive bladder!)  I had my first three month scope in March – my bladder was clear. Yay!

My life feels forever changed since that December day when I was told I have bladder cancer. I don’t take any part of my body for granted anymore. Yes, I do look in the toilet bowl each time after I pee. This will likely ease up as time goes by. Yes, I do get anxious when the date draws near for my next scope, as it does now with my next scope scheduled for early June. This will likely ease up too as time goes by.

Resources For Those With Bladder Cancer
Being the type-A person that I am, I read up on bladder cancer, both before and after my surgery. American Cancer Society and bladdercancer.net provide good information about bladder cancer. I also found the Bladder Cancer Advocacy Network at BCAN.org, which offers local support networks, research and clinical trials to those diagnosed with bladder cancer. I researched urologists in the Southern New Jersey and Philadelphia area and went for a second opinion with Dr. M at the University of Pennsylvania Hospital. He confirmed that my care was appropriate. Dr. M’s words eased my worries.

The Bladder Cancer Advocacy Network is an excellent resource for those with bladder cancer or caregivers.

Taking Time To Stop, Breathe, And Be
I noticed I’m speeding up again now that I’ve recovered from my surgery. Slow down, Judi! Slow down and smell the roses, I told myself the other day. I’m still learning to stop, breathe and be. It’s a part of my mindfulness practice that is front and center these days. I feel blessed to have such supportive family and friends during the past six months.

And to you dear readers. I share my story with you in the hopes that it will help other women who may be going through a similar health journey, now or in the future — so they know they are not alone. Any kind of cancer diagnosis is scary. I thank you for always being there during my ups and my downs. Your virtual friendship means the world to me.

Thanks for listening.

Judi

The post It’s Bladder Cancer Awareness Month: Time To Share My Story appeared first on A Boomers Life After 50.

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Give me an R!

Give me a B!

Give me a G!

What does that spell?

“RBG,” the title of the new documentary about Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

This documentary is a must see for every woman. I feel honored to have gone to the same alma mater, Cornell University, as Justice Ginsburg. She is truly “Notorious RBG” as the younger feminists call her.

At 84 years old, having survived two bouts of cancer (colon and pancreatic), she is still sharp and strong. She even has a personal trainer. If you want to practice her workout routine, there’s a book about it.

Justice Ginsburg mid workout routine in RBG, a Magnolia Pictures release. Courtesy of Magnolia Pictures.

I had an opportunity to screen the new “RBG” documentary this week. I was captured from the first five minutes and stayed up past midnight to watch the entire film. (Note if you cannot see the trailer below click on this link.)

RBG - Official Trailer - YouTube

It’s amazing how much we take for granted regarding today’s women’s rights. It wasn’t always that way – from getting a credit card to getting a loan – a man’s signature was required in the early 70s. As A.O. Scott wrote in his The New York Times review, “The idea that women are equal citizens – that barring them from certain jobs and educational opportunities and treating them as the social inferiors of men are unfair – may not seem especially controversial now. “RBG” uses Justice Ginsburg’s own experiences to emphasize how different things weren’t so long ago.”

A Smart Student
“My mother told me to be a lady and be independent,” Justice Ginsburg said. Sadly her mother died when she was only 17. But it’s clear that she followed through on her advice, going to Cornell University for an undergraduate degree, then Harvard Law School, and eventually graduating from Columbia Law School. She said that women suppressed how smart they were in the 1950s.

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in RBG, directed by Betsy West and Julie Cohen. Courtesy of CNN Films.

When she went to Cornell there were four men to every woman. (It was up to three to one when I attended in the 70s.) “It was considered an ideal place to send daughters,” said Justice Ginsburg. She did indeed meet her husband Marty Ginsburg, who she was married to for 63 years.

She followed Marty to Harvard Law and then after his graduation to NYC, where he got a job. When she went to Harvard Law in 1957 she was one of nine women in a class of 500 students. Plus, she came to Harvard Law as a mother of a 14 month old daughter. Wow-o-wow! Her granddaughter, who graduated last year, said women make up 50 percent of the population at Harvard Law now. How times have changed!

Justice Ginsburg with her granddaughter in RBG, a Magnolia Pictures release. Courtesy of Magnolia Pictures.

When she eventually transferred to Columbia Law School and graduated, she said no one would hire her. “Being a woman was an impediment,” said Justice Ginsburg.

Change Happens One Step At A Time
In the 1960s she taught at Rutgers University and in the 1970s went on to fight for equal rights for women. She won five out of the six cases on gender equality in front of the Supreme Court.

Her husband Marty was very supportive of her career and played a major parenting role with their two children, often times doing the cooking when she was in court. In 1980, she became a circuit court judge in D.C. In 1993, President Clinton nominated her to become the 107th judge of the Supreme Court.

Photo of the Supreme Court Justices, c. 1993, in RBG, a Magnolia Pictures release. Courtesy of Magnolia Pictures.

The rest is history, as they say. She is truly a remarkable woman.

Give me an R! Give me a B! Give me a G! What does that spell? “RBG,” the title of the new documentary about Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Go see it!

Judi

The post In Praise of The New “RBG” Documentary appeared first on A Boomers Life After 50.

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While I’m not a grandmother yet, when the team at Bluestreak Books (an imprint of Weldon Owen) asked me to partner with them to talk about grandparenting and offer a special giveaway for their new Grandmother’s Journal and Grandfather’s Journal, (plus a webcam) I agreed. It’s a timely gift for Mother’s Day and Father’s Day.*

Enter the giveaway for Grandmother’s and Grandfather’s Journals

Enter the #giveaway for a set of #GrandparentJournals thanks to my partner @WeldonOwen #AD
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Memories of My Grandmothers
I’m fond of talking about my grandmothers. I was lucky to know the two through my teens. Both my grandfathers died before I was born. In fact, my mother never really knew her father. He passed away when she was a toddler.

We called my maternal grandmother Nana. I think I was one of her favorites because I was the youngest grandchild. She lived nearby our apartment in The Bronx, NY and spent summers with us in Long Beach, NY. I so enjoyed visiting her after school. She would make brownies and store the brownies in an empty Maxwell House coffee can. They were as hard as rocks. We would have tea time and dunk our crusty brownies in the tea. Sometimes my Nana would read my tea leaves at the bottom of the cup. My fortune was always a good one.

My maternal Nana lived nearby.

Growing up, many Sunday afternoons were spent at my paternal Grandma’s home, also in The Bronx. She only spoke Yiddish. All the aunts chatted while the uncles played cards. I had many cousins so it was quite lively. Grandma would make homemade honey cake, knishes, and kugel. She was a good cook until her hearing and eyesight declined.

Thankfully, they both lived into their late 80s and early 90s, respectfully.

It’s Great To Be A Grandmother
Although I’m not a grandmother, I wanted to know more about grandparenting. So I asked some of my friends and blogging buddies. The answers were pretty consistent — it’s great to be a grandmother!

There are pages to share your wisdom.

S spoke about the differences between her four grandchildren: “The random mix of genes in their biology continues to amaze me. The youngest has my curly hair but his mom’s fair skin and freckles. His older brother has the serious demeanor and scientific curiosity of my late husband and has inherited his straight light brown hair.  Two of my grandchildren have my husband’s high forehead and one has a nubbin of hair growing at the nape of his neck, precisely where his father and his grandfather had theirs.  And yet they have gifts from others that did not come from me – my grandson’s musical ability, my granddaughter’s visual and artistic leanings. All mixed up and a new unique person emerges.”

There’s a place to capture your family tree.

She recalled a special memory: “One of the high points of my grandmotherhood was driving my two year old grandson to day care in Vermont when we were babysitting several years ago.  He had been driven that way many times by his parents. Usually they had him attached to a video but Gramma’s car did not have one. As we rounded a curve and the Adirondacks stretched ahead. I heard a voice from the back seat saying ‘wow’ in response to the beauty. It was a ‘wow’ moment for me too. Had he said ‘wow’ before or had he never really seen that, given the omnipresent videos in the back seat?  It reminded me of when his father, age 11 months, first saw the full moon in the night sky.”

S also mentioned the joys of being a step grandparent: “My partner has seven grandchildren, some of them geographically close to me.  These children allow me a pure form of grandmotherhood.  I have no expectations for them and they have none for me. I can give to them out of love and share experiences with me as an extra adult in their lives.  They have given me joys that surprised me – getting my nails done with the11 year old girl and shopping, opening them up to new experiences such as showing college campuses to the 14 year old.”

E commented on her own children, saying: “It’s rewarding to see my adult children become such loving parents. Their children, my grandchildren, are being raised with affection.”

You can share information about your grandparents.

L remarked how it’s better the second time around: “When I first was a parent, I was overwhelmed by the awesome responsibility and maybe I didn’t fully appreciate the little human being in my care who was growing and developing each day. It passed all too quickly. Looking back, I feel I may have missed out. But now as a grandparent it feels like a gift. The second time around…getting to love a little one, nurture and develop a relationship but this time free from the worries of balancing family, home and career,”

N spoke about the miracle of life and the beauty of generations: “My oldest child, a girl delivered her oldest child, also a girl on HER birthday! It was the most amazing feeling to hold this perfect little human 34 years after I held my own!! Karma…and now we have a perfect little boy as well. Being a grandmother (Nana) lets us know humanity. We never stop loving.”

Share a story about your child who is now a parent.

H mentioned the bonds that happen with grandparenting: “Being a grandmother is everything I was told it would be and more. The deep love is instantaneous! It grows stronger each time we are together. I am besotted with my granddaughter and my husband is over the moon.”

Grandparent Journals Make A Nice Keepsake
Now that you know how great it is to be a grandparent, when you become one, or if you already are one, or if you have a grandparent in your life, you’ll want to get or give a Grandmother’s Journal or Grandfather’s Journal. They make thoughtful gifts for grandparents for Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. The keepsake memory books are designed to capture and preserve grandparents’ unique memories, from the days of their own childhood through the precious moments they spend with their grandchild.

There’s plenty of room to store old photos.

The books are beautifully designed and offer plenty of space for grandparents to tell their own life story, keep a living record of their experiences, and share their hopes and dreams for their grandchild. Plus there’s a family tree and plenty of space for memorabilia and photographs. (Remember when we used to print photos?)

Enter the Giveaway For A Set of Journals and A Webcam

Enter the giveaway!

Thanks to publisher Bluestreak Books, one lucky reader will not only receive a set of Journals but the giveaway also includes a webcam! Be sure to leave a comment about your grandparents or what you love about being a grandmother or grandfather (for any guys who read my blog). You can also enter via the Rafflecopter entry below.

To all those who are mothers, I wish you a “Happy Mother’s Day.”

Judi

*Disclosure of Material Connection: Bluestreak Books (an imprint of Weldon Owen) is partnering with me for a giveaway. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

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The post Capture the Memories: It’s Great To Be A Grandmother appeared first on A Boomers Life After 50.

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If you’ve read my previous posts about my Viking journey on the luxurious Viking Star ocean liner to the Cities of Antiquity & The Holy Land, exploring ports in Greece, Cyprus and Israel, it’s now time to take a break for our days at sea. My boyfriend L and I were traveling courtesy of Viking Cruises.* 

There’s much to do on the Viking Star during days at sea and I (with L by my side some of the time) was eager to discover all that the ship had to offer. From morning workouts at the gym to walks around the upper and middle decks, from visits to the spa to lazy lounging by the pool, from afternoon tea to a behind the scenes look at the galley below, I was on a mission to completely consume these peaceful and pleasant hours.

Are you ready for days at sea and the beautiful Aegean waters?

Wellness at the the LiV Nordic Spa
The team at Viking didn’t have to twist my arm to get me to book a massage and facial at the LiV Nordic Spa. LiV has a full service spa menu including massages, body scrubs, facials, skin analysis, and hair and nail salon. There’s also royal Nordic grooming available for men.

My first treatment was a Swedish mindful massage. Ewa, my therapist was from Poland. “You have a PRC,” said Ewa. She was referring to my “personal rock collection” in my back with tight muscles and trigger points. I had never heard such a phrase, but it made me laugh. She got out all my knots. Ewa suggested I use Epsom salts and baking soda with lavender oil in my baths at home.

Ewa said I had a PRC, personal rock collection of tight muscles.

On my second day at sea, I selected a Nordic Classic facial. It was organic, anti-aging, and tailor-made. Shayle was my esthetician and brought me into full serenity, exfoliating with a papaya and vitamin C mixture and then applying a jasmine and honey mask. She  ended with cupping on my face to help with lymphatic drainage, plump the skin, and stimulate my circulation system. She said it is very detoxifying and soothes the skin.

Shayle said my skin was extremely dehydrated, which it always is thanks to my post-menopausal body! She recommended I exfoliate twice a week to take off dead skin so the moisturizer can penetrate my face better. (Shayle, I listened to you and now exfoliate several times a week.)

Ready to relax with an organic facial.

I saved skin care analysis for my last full day at sea. It was a shocker when my face went under the screen.

“Your skin’s age is like you’re 69 years old underneath the pigmentation,” said Hanna, the esthetician. “The pigmentation is 66 years old. You have darker pigmentation coming through so you need to continue to protect the skin. Your hydration level is like a 70 year old.” (OMG! OMG! My face is 10 years older than I am. That’s scary!)

Help, my skin is aging!

“Drink more water and eat enough oils. Olive oil and fish oil is good,” said Hanna. “Try different moisturizers, exfoliate and hydrate, hydrate, hydrate your skin.” At least my skin tone came out at 63, closer to my age. I continue to always use SPF 50 sunscreen on my face every day.

A Peek Behind the Menu 
It was fun to go down under to tour the galley with Executive Chef Donald. It’s where all the food is prepared for the entire two weeks. Chef Donald has been working at sea for 22 years. That’s a long time to be cooking on an ocean liner!

Executive Chef Donald gave us a tour of the galley.

He told us that there are 99 cooks on board. Wow-o-wow! “We keep track of everything we serve so we have history to know what quantities to prepare. We know a majority will go for the veal tonight. Not that many for the vegetarian,” said Chef Donald.

The team of 99 prepare all the meals on board.

According to Chef Donald, 120 tons of food are brought on board at the first port for each 14 day cruise. There are segregated refrigerators to keep the food fresh. In addition, they buy local fish at ports where they can. They make all their own gelato. L and I can confirm that the gelato is so good, so good, so good.

Homemade gelato was so good.

Fresh fish is served at Manfredi’s Italian Restaurant on the Viking Star.

It’s an amazing operation. “The baker gets up at 4:00 a.m. to bake bread for breakfast each morning,” said Chef Donald. “Nothing is prepared in advance.” I can absolutely confirm that the croissants are so good, so good, so good.

Breakfast pastries are baked fresh every morning.

I had a new appreciation for the food as L and I dined that evening and every meal afterwards.

The food selections at World Cafe were plentiful.

Afternoon Delights Are There For The Taking
Afternoons are very restful during days at sea. L liked reading and taking naps after lunch and after our walks around the deck. For me, I found it meditative to simply sit and watch the Aegean blue waters make waves as the ship picked up speed.

L and I enjoyed walking around the deck during days at sea.

From 4:00 – 5:00 p.m. was especially nice with Afternoon Tea in the Wintergarden Cafe accompanied by Resident Guitarist Luis. It was a classic tradition with freshly brewed tea, warm scones and butter and jam. The scones were so good, so good, so good.

It’s tea time!

Dance classes, lectures, movies and even cooking classes were on the agenda during days at sea.

Almost to Italy
It was our last day at sea and we were approaching Italy. Naples and Rome would be our final ports before going home.

Approaching Italy with Sicily on the side.

L had never been to Italy before. I couldn’t wait to share Rome with him. The Colosseum, the Spanish Steps, the Trevi Fountain, Piazza Navona, Campo de Fiori, and the best ever pizza. The grand finale awaits.

Judi

P.S. In case you missed my earlier posts about my Viking Ocean Cruise, check them out below:

My First-Ever Ocean Cruise On The Luxurious “Viking Star”
My Viking Journey: A World of Ancient Treasures in Athens ”
My Viking Journey: A Visit To The Beautiful Island of Mykonos
My Viking Journey: A Visit To Cyprus & The Goddess of Love
My Viking Journey: A Day To Remember in Old Jerusalem
My Viking Journey: Sightseeing In The Beautiful City Of Haifa
My Viking Journey: The Secrets of the Ancient City of Acre

*Disclosure of Material Connection: This is a “sponsored post.” Viking Cruises provided me with a complimentary press trip on the Cities of Antiquity and Holy Lands Ocean Cruise. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

The post My Viking Journey: Peaceful & Pleasant Days At Sea appeared first on A Boomers Life After 50.

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If you knew you were going to live to 100, what would you do differently today?

In my last blog post, I introduced this question and provided some reflections from the 2018 AARP Disrupt Aging: The Implications of Living 100 Forum. As promised, this week I’m going to share tips from some of the experts who spoke about changing the way we earn and learn.

Enter the #giveaway for a copy of “Disrupt Aging” by @JoAnn_Jenkins CEO of @AARP #disruptaging
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Changing the Way We Earn
“The only time I hear people talk about God and money is when they say ‘God, I wish I had more money’,” said Suze Orman, The World’s Personal Finance Expert.

Wealth expert Suze Orman focused on managing finances to live to 100.

According to Employee Benefit Research Institute 2016 stats, 41% of American households headed by people 55-64 have no retirement assets.

Maybe that’s why Suze hit hard on the importance of saving for old age: “At 25, if you put away $100 a month until 65, you can have $1 million at 65. If you start at 35 versus 25, you will net only $300,000 at 65.” At the same time she was adamant about paying down debt, especially credit card debt which has high interest rates.

“Money alone will never make you happy. But lack of money will make you miserable,” said Suze. Seeing her parents struggle financially made her want to become monetarily successful and help others become fiscally fit too. After working really hard and making lots of money, she retired two years ago at 65 and moved to a private island in the Bahamas. Sounds pretty successful to me?

“These shoes are the same shoes I’ve been wearing for 20 years. Same jacket. Same earrings. I only have one pair of earrings,” said Suze while discussing ‘needs’ versus ‘wants.’

Ooh, Suze, I have so many pairs of earrings. I likely have too many pairs. You’re right, I don’t need any more earrings. Now as for shoes, the latest AARP Magazine just said that you are allowed to buy shoes during your 60s because your feet flatten and get bigger! I just bought Vionic shoes because they have high arches.

Suze shared that she wears the same pair of earrings whenever she is a speaker.

Besides curbing spending, Suze recommended being wise about managing risk, especially if you know you might live to 100. “Time is the most important ingredient in saving. The mistake you make is to get out of the market. Invest in good quality stocks, S&P 500 Index Funds in the USA, ETFs, Mutual Funds and one in Europe or overseas.” Note: Of course you should do what is best for your circumstances working with a financial advisor.

Suze didn’t stay in retirement long. She’s back at it again with a Woman & Money podcast.

Changing the Way We Learn
“How many lives are you? Which one is better – your first career self, your second career self, your parent or grandparent self?” asked Dave Evans, Co-Founder, Stanford Life Design Lab and Co-Author, Designing Your Life. “Imagine you can have as many of yourselves that you like. There’s more aliveness in all of us than we get to live, it’s just dysfunctional beliefs are getting in the way.” said Dave.

Dave Evans is from Stanford University’s Life Design Lab.

Dave described how people get stuck because of different dysfunctional beliefs such as discovering their passion. Sometimes people haven’t discovered their passion or have so many passions. (Which are you? I’m the later.)

Do you suffer from dysfunctional beliefs?

Dave introduced the concept of design thinking. “Get curious. Talk to people. Try some stuff. Share what you learn,” said Dave. It was clear that there was no one way to learn a new skill.

d.life lab is about lifelong learning.

“Do you need a degree?” asked Dave. “It depends on why you want to learn something.” If it’s about changing careers, Dave suggested looking backwards from the future to the present and examining your expertise, your network and whether or not you need a certificate or degree to make a pivot into a new position.

Not all learning requires a degree.

The good news is that Dialogues in Clinical Neuroscience (2013) reports that “Even as we age, the brain maintains its ability to change and rewire itself as we learn new things.”

Changing the Way We Connect
I wanted to hug Cheryl Strayed, author of WILD and Co-host of Dear Sugar Radio podcast. Having read WILD and heard Cheryl speak before, she has a special way of connecting with the audience and drawing you in without any slides — likely why she was there to make the case for a new way of connecting and the need for interpersonal relationships.

Cheryl Strayed spoke about the importance of connecting.

“The most powerful thing I say as Dear Sugar is you’re not alone. In your deepest, darkest suffering, you’re not alone,” said Cheryl. Cheryl can say this because as Dear Sugar, she receives thousands of letters from people and hears similar stories.

“Literature shows us that this is true. If I locked the doors and everyone shared a heart break, a triumph, or a loss, you would feel a deep connection to the people around you,” said Cheryl. She gave an example from end of The Wizard of Oz: “Glinda, the good witch, tells Dorothy to just click her shoes together and she’ll get home. She always had that power. She just had to go through all the journey to believe it.”

Cheryl challenged us to harness the power when we are vulnerable and begin to connect. “You always have to exercise the things that make you emotionally well. There’s never a better moment than now,” said Cheryl.

But how do you do that? Here’s what Cheryl advised:

Revise the narrative of what you think is okay to express emotionally. Try to reveal your truest self. Rewrite the stories that don’t serve you in emotional well-being. Ask yourself – what do I believe?

Be brave enough to show who you really are. Being vulnerable is scary because people can reject us. Cheryl believes more will connect than reject. Tell a story that you’ve never told. “Every time I’ve taken a risk of emotional vulnerability or intimacy it changes relationships,” said Cheryl.

Cultivate empathy. Listen with openness and without judgement — to a colleague, friend, family member, stranger. You end up having more empathy for yourself when you have empathy for others.

In closing, Cheryl encouraged participants to “Speak a sentence to someone you haven’t before. Tell a story you haven’t shared. Write an email to someone you’ve been meaning to connect with. It’s a way to grow closer. All of those ways are ways of connecting to live to 100.”

Don’t you love Cheryl Strayed? I knew you would!

Enter the Giveaway For A Copy of Disrupt Aging
Leave a comment and let me know what parts of this post resonated with you. Be sure to enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway below for a copy of AARP CEO Jo Ann Jenkins’ bestseller, Disrupt Aging.

Judi

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The post Disrupt Aging: Expert Tips To Stay Wealthy, Wise and Connected appeared first on A Boomers Life After 50.

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“Current 10 year olds may age to be 104,” said Jo Anne Jenkins, CEO of AARP, as she kicked off a conversation about longevity at the 2018 AARP Disrupt Aging: The Implications of Living 100 Forum, powered by Forbes and held at the Newseum in Washington, D.C. last week. The event featured presentations with leading experts in health, tech, work and personal finance, education and policy to discuss one simple question:

If you knew you were going to live to 100,
what would you do differently today?

Disrupt Aging: Implications of Living 100 Forum was held at the Newseum in D.C.

(Note: Be sure to read to the end of the post and enter the giveaway for a copy Jo Anne’s bestseller, Disrupt Aging.)

Enter the #giveaway for a copy of “Disrupt Aging” by @JoAnn_Jenkins CEO of @AARP #disruptaging
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Implications of Living 100
With this overriding question, each speaker challenged us to shift how we think about our own aging and rethink how we earn, learn, connect, and live in the present. The facts and figures were staggering. Here goes:

In 1960, 9 percent of the U.S. population was over age 65. In 2060, that number will grow to 24 percent. “You’re either going to be a caregiver or need caregiving,” said Jo Anne. Ooh, ooh, ooh, I’ll be in the ‘need caregiving’ if I live that long and will be over 100! How about you?

By 2030, the first Boomers will turn 85, the first Gen Xers will turn 65, and the first Millennials will turn 50. Ooh, ooh, ooh, I’ll be in my early 70s and my kids will be in their 40s. How old will you be? 

How old will you be in 2030?

The 50 and over category is worth $15 trillion and $7.6 trillion of annual activity is done by post 50 people in the U.S. Wow-o-wow, we’re worth a lot and we’re sure active individuals!

75 percent of Boomers in the U.S. plan to work past 65, and many will have two, three and four different careers in their lifetime. Hmm, I started out as a magazine editor, then I went into public relations, then corporate communications. Now I’m a blogger and yoga instructor. Where are you on your career spectrum?

Jo Anne Jenkins is the CEO of AARP.

“How does the perspective of a longer life make you feel?” Jo Anne asked. “We need to challenge the negative attitudes around aging, including behaviors, social norms, culture, and more. We need to disrupt aging, giving people the opportunity to look forward to it, not fear it,” she said. “It’s about – how we live – not how long we live. What if we didn’t have the word retirement?”  Ooh, ooh, ooh, Jo Anne, can you think of another word to call retirement? I agree, I don’t like that word either! I retired from my full-time job five years ago but I don’t consider myself retired. I have so many passions I’m pursuing.

Are you ready to disrupt aging?

Jo Anne noted that the average age of graduation from college is 23. “What if colleges offered lifetime subscriptions?” she said. Ooh, ooh, ooh, I wish I could go back to Cornell and not have to pay so much money for a course, especially since I paid off my student loan.

“Think of the concept of having more time as lifespace,” said Jo Anne. It was time to open our workbook and do some reflecting. I’ll share the question so you can reflect too.

Reflection:
What’s one dream you have for yourself in your later years? Write out that dream in as much detail as possible.

How are you going to make the most of your lifespace?

Evolution of Longevity
With the audience fully engaged and ready and wanting to disrupt aging, Jonathan Stevens, Senior Vice President, Thought Leadership, AARP, took the stage to share powerful data and trends in longevity over the past century.

AARP’s Jonathan Stevens shared longevity trends.

“What’s past is prologue,” Jonathan said quoting Shakespeare, “The past sets the context for the present.” He spoke about how over the last century, life expectancy has practically doubled, citing such changes as environmental improvements with cleaner water and cleaner air, penicillin and vaccines to treat disease, increased education with more access to universities, seat belts to reduce car deaths, and “smoke-free zones” to reduce exposure to second-hand smoke, as contributors to longer life.

Referencing The Industrial Revolution from 1850 to 1950, Jonathan said, “Over the 100 years, life expectancy saw a 2.5 year increase every decade.” For example, according to CDC records life expectancy at birth in the U.S. between 1850 and 1880—ranged between 38.3 and 44.0 years (for both sexes combined) and increased to 68 in 1950. “Despite occasional setbacks we have continued on a path to longer life,” said Jonathan.

Children today could live to 100 and beyond.

“We can project from the past into the future,” said Jonathan, as he speculated that by 2070 that number could reach 100 as long as we continue to invest in health, education and medical research.

After all those stunning statistics, we were asked to reflect. Do you want to join me?

Reflection:
If you knew you’d live to 100, what changes would you make to your life now? To what degree would you change your approach to your career and how you earn, your education and how you learn, and your social life and how you connect with others? Would you not change your approach? Would you slightly tweak it? Would you do a radical change? Or, do you not know?

Ike is 107 and is still active. His daughter is 82!

Ooh, ooh, ooh, that was deep and heavy stuff.

That’s enough pondering and prodding about living to 100 for now. In future posts, I’ll share more fun facts and figures and tips and tricks about how to disrupt aging including:

Changing the way we earn from Suzy Orman, The World’s Personal Finance Expert;
Changing the way we learn from Dale Evans, Co-Founder, Stanford Life Design Lab and author of Designing Your Life;
Changing the way we connect from Cheryl Strayed, author of the bestselling memoir WILD and Co-Host of Dear Sugar Radio podcast;
Changing our approach to health from Vivek H. Murthy, MD, 19th Surgeon General of the United States and Cheryl E. Woodson, MD, Geriatrician.

Meantime, leave a comment and let me know how those reflections are going. Also enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway below for a copy of Jo Ann Jenkins bestseller, Disrupt Aging.

Judi

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The post Living 100: How To Make The Most of Living A Longer Life appeared first on A Boomers Life After 50.

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