Friday, October 23, 2009


Target has added this word to their advertising lexicon - Frugalistas - women who want fashion, but at a bargain price. I think that's me!

I occasionally buy clothes at Target, mostly t-shirts and shoes, but accessories are where they shine. I have bought several totes and purses that look much more expensive than they are. But Target is not where Frugalistas go. Oh, no. We, who are true bargain hunters, stalk a different prey in a much cheaper forest...

I have a friend on the west coast who taught me how to thrift store shop. Now, if you haven't gone to the chain thrift stores on the west coast, you haven't shopped. The reason they are so good? Everyone on the west coast recycles, providing some major finds. But brand name merchandise at rock bottom prices comes from the manufacturer or department stores liquidating their inventory. I kid you not, and it was the real deal, a Kate Spade bag for $8 in mint condition. I gave it as a Christmas gift and the recipient was blown away. My friend has a closet full of designer labels all bought for $10 or less. Some of her finds still have the original store tags on them. Yes, that is the definition of a Fashionista.

Well, I don't live on the west coast, so what other options are there? I have trolled in Goodwill, Salvation Army, etc. But those are really hit and miss. Veteran's of America stores rock. They have a mixture of give aways and liquidations. I've done well at these places, especially for men's dress wear.

But I have to say that when you find a good consignment store, your world opens up. I have a favorite place and I rarely share it because it is that good. I got 2 designer label, high end, high quality mens suits for $20 each. No joke. The trick with consignment is time on the shelf. And when they have end of season sales to move the merchandise, there are drastic markdowns. Score!

I like outlet malls (though not all are created equal) as well, but for the thrill of the hunt, there is nothing that beats west coast thrift store chains. As my friend shared with me the other night, she hit the jackpot on Monday - 99cent day! Target, sharget. Go pro!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

How We Conduct Ourselves

When I was in grade school, one of my classmates won a contest and got a free entry to charm school run by one of the local department stores. Most of the girls I grew up with were a bit rough around the edges. When our friend, Mary, came back from charm school - she had her shirt tucked in her skirt, her shoes shined, a barette in her hair, etc. It was the first time I ever realized that "tomboy" may not be a lifelong winning character strategy. Problem is, I have never to this day been graceful (not full of grace as Elaine famously said on Seinfeld). I'm clumsy and animated. I have difficulty being demure. My hair generally looks a bit scattered except when I leave the salon. At least this is how I see myself.

So maybe that is why I like Courtney Cox's new character. She is a lot of fire and not so much grace. I think it is a metaphor for her stumbling through her 40s as a single gal. Most of the time I feel like I'm stumbling too - metaphorically, because I have no idea how to do a social scene.

I recently hung out with old friends who have known me only as married to my ex. So they ask how he's doing (as if he just couldn't make the visit) and I feel like they all look at me as if I am missing a limb. Where I currently reside, no one associates my ex with me, because I came here as a single. Even in my last city, most people never met my ex because we separated nearly upon arrival in that city. It really threw me for a loop when I realized my friends were still seeing me in that "couple" frame and didn't see me as just me. I'm sure I am hypersensitive to it, but I just felt like an alien. I have told only one of my old college chums about my younger guy, shared pictures, and shared the grim future. She is my thrice married friend, currently single, so I knew she would get it. We stood up for each other at our respective first weddings. So, we've both been there, done that, and seen the light.

I talked to another old friend today who knew the charm school girl. She is one of those wonderful friends who never sits in judgment and is completely open to whatever I am doing (except she thinks I should get the swine flu shot). She always asks about my social life as much as she asks about my younger guy and cheers me on to feel good about myself. That's gold.

So maybe I don't have to fit the charm school mold. Maybe that is an outdated expectation of how we conduct ourselves. I believe it is more important to adhere to honesty, responsibility, and loyalty than whether I can carry a book on my head or shine my shoes :)

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Courtney Cox is my new hero!?

I'm not a big television fan, though readers know I do get sucked into the bachelor/ette stuff, ugh.

I just watched all the previews and clips from the new show, Cougartown! OMG I LMAO!!

The premise is that our heroine, Courtney Cox is a 40+ divorcee who is back in the dating pool. She quickly finds out that many men her age are married, want a younger woman, are gay, or other. Not sure what the other is, but her view of the pool is that it is basically wading size. CC is a really good comedienne (Friends) and great with physical comedy. I look forward to watching the episodes on

The funniest quips from the previews were focused on how her body had changed as she aged - why is skin in new places?, whether she can attract a man and the wonders of an encounter with a new man who is not her old husband - woot!, and how to handle a younger man - double woot!

Since Demi Moore did the modern groundbreaking for this phenomenon, many women have fantasized, sought, and found happiness with a younger man. In the case of Cougertown, CC comes with a teenage son, thereby relieving the tension - what if he wants kids - at least temporarily. Of course, our heroine only has a few years window in which this position is available. When said child has kids of his own, her granny status will not be quite as attractive to the younger man - or will it?

I am a great fan of the younger man option. Can't be helped, it's what I prefer. Always have. So what do the Ashton Kutcher's of the dating world expect when it comes to kids? My younger man was quite clear about wanting kids and a family, hence, putting me out of the long-term picture. Are other women finding more enlightened men? less family-interested men? or is this just the ultimate, selfish, narcissistic position a woman can take? I go back and forth on that one.

Older men who date younger women often start second families - Michael Douglas and Katherine Zeta Jones for example. But what happens when biology is reversed. Women over 45 are generally not giving birth. I know it happens, but it is not easy, nor recommended. For men, they just need the blue pill and making through better chemistry.

Is it fair for older women with younger men to deny them the opportunity to have a biological child? I have given this a lot of thought over time and can't come to any particular conclusion. I can rail against nature and say it isn't fair that once I miss my biological window, I am toast and men can have 2nd and 3rd families if they want (Pablo Picasso comes to mind). But it is what it is. And yes, I know there is adoption and fostering, but some men want their own biological child. I guess that is not the man for me.

What will our heroine do when the time comes for "the talk" with her younger man? Will she be able to ask him - do you want kids? Will he be ready to answer or will he just want more of that cougar, lol? Stay tuned this fall as we see how it unravels. Meanwhile, I would love to see more tales of romance in the REAL world. What do you have for me, dear readers?

Sunday, August 16, 2009

What life is mine?

I have been a busy bee this summer and have neglected this blog. I never set out to be a blogger on a daily or weekly basis. I blog when the mood strikes me, when I have something that interests me enough to write about, and don't want to just fill the space with the same stuff over and over. I did see Julie and Julia (the movie) and do not want to be that type of blogger! Though, I guess if I did, I would get a movie or book deal. Hell, Erma Bombeck did it back in my mom's day!

But let me get an update out of the way.
I have become a devoted follower of Burts Bees natural products. Radiance Exfoliating Body Wash (no bad chems, so no suds), Orange Essence facial cleanser (smells so yummy), Milk & Honey body lotion (which I think I will use more in the winter), Honey and Bilberry foot creme - which is the best thing I have EVER found for my heels which get so cracked and yucky in the summer. This stuff is amazing. And the bonus is that you can rub any excess into your finger cuticles (mine dry and crack horribly) and now they are marvelous!!! And the grand finale --- Ageless Line Diminishing day lotion with Pomegranate and Para Cress. You know those big "bad boy" wrinkles in your forehead - that won't go away? They will now. Amazing stuff!!!

Just wanted you to know that I have found a product line that is wonderful!

Ok, so tonight I am a bit introspective and not sure I can be funny or entertaining. But a blog is for the writer and I need some reflection.

My real self is on Facebook and I enjoy keeping up with lots of friends, family, colleagues, around the country. I find it useful for engaging in causes, reading interesting news articles that other people post, keeping up with the latest trends, and so on. But tonight I really got hit square in the jaw by all the summer fanfare that people are engaged in. One friend went clamming with her family in the Northeast. Another, posted summer pictures from Florida. Others, showed pictures of boating and lakes, family outings and reunions, kids being summer kids, and so on.

I have no such posts. I have had no such experiences. I have had some fun times this summer - a road trip, a quick weekend with my sibling and nieces, a few days with an dear friend in a city where I grew up, a fundraiser for an organization that I planned and came off very well, and assorted other bits and pieces of time with various friends and, of course, time spent with my best friend. It works for me, but it is so very nontraditional. I feel like others are living a Kodak life and I am living a version of modern art - you see it, but you don't really get it.

I like my life (save for being separated by distance from my closest friends) and the non-traditional family I have created. I have my best friend who is what passes for my significant other. Even though we don't live in the same city any more, I see him frequently and talk to him every day on the phone or via a computer medium. I have my close girlfriends who are my siblings. I keep up with their comings and goings, boyfriends and girlfriends, financial predicaments, etc. I have crazy aunts and uncles in my extended family who are the friends and family of my "sibilings" This is how I know I am glad I don't have a real family. One real sibiling is enough, thank you. I have my children who are the kids I mentor, big sister, volunteer my time with, take to events, and enjoy watching grow up.

I have some very nontraditional friends on FB - I don't really hang out with the Donna Reed crowd. But kids and family - the kind that are with you every day - is missing from my life at the moment. And I guess all the pictures and tales of summer stuff just kind of crept up on me today. I am grateful I no longer live with my ex-husband. And I just am not into the dating scene (a whole other story). Which leaves me with me. I wish I were more entertaining and fun to be with, so I could amuse - well, me! Let's face it, I get bored! I long for a dinner party, a movie night, shakespear in the park, a museum - with people I know. It's why I keep one foot in my old city, while I try on shoes on the other foot in this new city. Moving is easy. Living there is a lot tougher.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Dance, Dance, Dance

Hopefully you have seen this video!!!!
It is infectuous and FUN :)

How fabulous is it that these two could have the wedding the way they wanted it! It says so much about who they are, their confidence in themselves and each other, and their dare to be a different spirit!

Weddings are often such staid affairs. Sometimes bordering on somber as everyone slowly walks down the aisle seriously with chamber music playing. Hello???
Bad enough that everyone is in formal wear (which makes no sense since no one actually wears those clothes anymore), but the hyperbole of the ceremony with lighting a candle, filling a tube with colored sand, throwing rose petals, birdseed, and rice...where does this come from? I know, people still jump over brooms too.

I guess the ceremony is just lost on me anymore. I love weddings and the joyous, ebulent aura of them. I just don't like the staginess of it. Rather like a play. I know that's how I felt in my own wedding - like I was on a stage giving a performance (and not a very good one). Should have just hightailed it out of there.

I love the idea of dancing down the aisle!! Love is grand and requires a grand gesture. For this couple, they executed it perfectly and it seemed genuine. I hope it was. I wonder if they boogied out of the church la,la,la,la,la, :)

I can't stop watching this video (I love the song anyway), and hope I find someone with whom I can boogie to the justice of the peace/city hall/ or wherever we end up!

Sunday, July 5, 2009


I want to rumminate on one of my favorite things in life - SEX. Oh, to revel between the sheets and enjoy the pleasure that my body can produce for me. We are miraculous beings, but sometimes work against ourselves. I have 2 friends that are currently doing without, another who has a line formed at her door, and me - who is currently without partner - for whom sex is a significant topic in our lives. I'm sure sex is important to other friends too. We just don't talk about it.

As Diane Keaton so marvelously put it in the great movie, Something's Gotta Give, "Oh, I do love sex." Well put. I may not look like it, but I am a sex kitten - love it, everyday, twice a day, all ways, woot. Unfortunately I don't have a partner at the moment. A friend said, oh - I can't believe you can't go out and get laid! To which I said, uh - I don't know. I haven't tried. While I am an avid fan of sex - I am also built with the psyche of a straight-laced woman who is not mentally prepared for one night stands. I wasn't up for that in college (and wondered why I didn't have any offers, duh), I wasn't up for that while I was married (to an a-sexual spouse - let's leave that story for the professionals), and I am not up for it now. I'm not a prude, but I just can't take my clothes off, get below or on top of, someone I just met. Call me crazy.

Now I have another friend who recently has been dating a man with whom she gets along well, has fun, likes to be around, but decided he just wasn't going to be a long term prospect. She said she broke up with him, which actually meant, took him out of her potential long term relationship pool. So I asked the obvious question for a fellow traveler in the sexual desert - Did you at least get some sex? Her response was devestating to me. I was ready to live vicariously through her thrill ride. "No," she said, "I could have, but didn't think I should because..." Her voice trailed off for me. How could she pass up an opportunity like this? She knows the guy, likes him, is comfortable with him, and he is not looking for a long term partnership. I get that she is looking for love, but this is a golden opportunity. Well, she didn't see it that way, something about getting stuck if she slept with the guy. Hmmmm.

I have a third friend, a guy, who is taking a break from sexual liaisons at the moment. He has always been a go slow guy, but not so slow that he doesn't have a regular sex partner on call or in his life. He also has a bevy of volunteers, to whom he always says no. He's not looking to be a player, just a regular. Anyway, he is taking a break that is reminiscent of George Costanza - Seinfeld - where he becomes brilliant when he abstains from sex. Of course his condition completely reverses itself the minute he gives in and has sex with some woman. My friend is looking for clarity, focus, and wants to be without the distraction that comes with regular sex - that would be the woman who expects to be part of your life sometimes. So I asked him if this abstinence included the m-word and if he was king of his castle. No, no - daily self-love is not restricted. Well, there you have it, I said. Guys have it easy. Of course you can do without the complications of a woman when you are gratifying yourself daily, creating those endorfins, and feeling at least marginally satisfied. His retort to me was, "well, men are not the only ones who can self-gratify." Oh - wicked comeback. Not. It isn't the same for women, I protested.

In fact, I have great ambivalence in that area. I resort to self-gratification on occassion, but what I want is the entire thrill ride. Sex is more than just bodily response - it is also knowing that you are with another human being who has some interest in being there and with whom you are engaging in the most primitive ritual on the planet. To be in sync with another body, simultaneously breathing and heaving, hearing their voice in your ear, feeling their skin touch yours...Yeah. Where is my ac remote. Hot in here.

So the quest goes on. I do love sex, but as I define it.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Glutton for Punishment

I swore I would not do this again. I thought I had learned my lesson. I guess I didn't. I'm doing it again.

Yep, I'm hooked on The Bachelor-ette :o

I know I said after The Bachelor and the horrible ending and all that, I would not be manipulated by this TV show again. But Jillian is so cute and open and we want her to win! And she picked some great guys, but OMG, this IS the most manipulative TV show in the world. But I can't look away. I watch the episodes on the internet, so Tuesday night is my TV night. I get so swept up in this ridiculousness. Why?

Maybe we all secretly desire the fairy tale - romance, a connection, picking or getting picked to be "the one." Maybe we all secretly wish we could just find the guy allready - and if it has to be done in 13 weeks in a contrived situation globetrotting in front of a camera with 500 men we didn't pick ourselves - well, whatever - just so I get a guy who is hunky, loyal, romantic, dreamy, and a good kisser, right?

So how is it that Jillian can fall for 4 or 5 guys at once and can't choose? Women are not built lilke that. We expect guys to be that way, but gals fall hard for one guy at a time. But is that really the case? I know this show plays to all our stereotypes - Wes the musician bad boy, Reid the straight laced and cautious businessman, Mike the goofy youngest guy, etc. etc. etc. And poor Jillie, having to decide who is being straight with her, who is genuine, who loves her, and oh yeah, who does she love? This show is the modern version of The Dating Game. How far we've come in just 40 years. On that show you picked someone for a single date - not a romp, not an engagement, not a move-in, just a date. And the date was chaparoned. No funny stuff, no impropriety - even though this was the '60s and everyone was about free love and sleeping with everyone. Not on The Dating Game! LOL

So, now we accept the propriety and expect the impossible - that 2 people will fall in love on a dating marathon where potentials are winnowed like so much bad fruit each week. Well, guess he is past his expiration date - next! And if you are not sure, well, squeeze the fruit and maybe even take a taste - except everyone IS looking. Jillian has yet to go on the secret suite date where the potential mate spends the night - but it is bound to happen sometime. After all, she did sleep with Jason last season. Does that mean she is damaged goods? No, not our fair Jillian, Canada's sweetheart <3.

Will I keep watching? You bet'cha! I have to see how it ends. It's the ultimate chick flick and I am a sucker for romance. Hey - did you really think that Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan fell in love in all the movies they've been in together? No, but it sure is fun to pretend. So next Tuesday I will continue with my entertainment and realize though it claims to be reality TV, it is just pretend. I think I'm rooting for Reid...