Menopause

Grandma Update: Dressing for a Man

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“I like your zebras!” a guy called out as I strolled down the sidewalk a few weeks ago. Men don’t usually shout out compliments on my clothes, so this put some spring in my step, especially since I had just purchased my zebra top.

But actually, I don’t dress for men these days. Nope. I dress for one man, a small one, my grandson Mazen.

At age one, Maze was intrigued with chickens. “Buck, buck!” (for “cluck, cluck”) was one of his first words. He knew a chicken when he saw one, and one day spotted two of them on my Friend for the Ride t-shirt ( which features Cliff’s childhood egg cups).

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That spurred me on. I’ve added bumblebees, zebras,  lion, and giraffes to my wardrobe. I never knew dressing for a man could be this fun.

And since I have daughters (and because Cliff refuses to let me pick out his clothes), I never knew shopping for a man could be this fun! I look for animals and trucks/cars/trackers in 4 T. The shark shirt below was the hit of the summer.

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Speaking of dressing for men, my gut says I’ve mostly dressed for other women over the  years. Women seem to be the ones to notice clothes and compliment them. But I must say, when a man says something pleasant about my outfit, I take extra note. What about you? Do you dress for yourself? Other women?  Men?

Check out this article, which says that few women really dress for men, since to a man, the less clothes on a woman the better. Any men out there? Agree?

Menopause

The Ladies Room Door Art Series: Part Fourteen

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More doors!

Above, a faux chalk door at La Place, a restaurant not far from my house.

Below, a lovely silhouette in the lobby of The Queechee Inn in Queechee Vermont. We traveled to green and beautiful Vermont in June for the wedding of a family friend.

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And this sign at the Burlington Town Center in Vermont gets the prize for prettiest mall bathroom door.

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A carved wooden sign at the Queechee Gorge Village, a series of antique and other shops.

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The Circle K where we stopped for gas in Ossipee, New Hampshire.

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The Ice House in New Castle, New Hampshire.

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This gentle giant gazes at you when you sit on the pot at the Ice House.

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The very elegant door at Wentworth by the Sea in New Castle, New Hampshire.

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From my friend Justin, who teaches English in China. This unisex sign hangs outside the art museum in Ningbo.

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From reader Candace, who found this sign at a dive bar in Charlestown, South Carolina. Neither she nor her husband can remember the name of the bar. Sounds like they had a pretty good time!

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Candace snapped this a way cool fish made of liquor labels.

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And she found this door at Jalapenos in Annapolis, Maryland.

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Brand new friend and blog reader Greta poses outside a ladies room in Amsterdam.

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From Lilly, a photo snapped at The Strand in Galveston, Texas.

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And I found this one at Old Town, San Diego.

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As I stood in front of the ladies room at Maggiano’s at Southpoint Mall in Durham, North Carolina, a woman said, “You must being doing something arty.” I explained that I photograph interesting ladies room doors for my blog. “I like this bumpy glass,” I told her.

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On the way out she said, “Why don’t you take the back of the door too?” So I did!

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What an amazing world! Art abounds, even in bathrooms, if you keep your eyes open for it. May you find today the ladies room door of your dreams (and snap a photo for me). Thanks!

Giveaway Winners: Here’s the latest list:

Sue won Dr. Paul Lam’s Born Strong: From Surviving the Great Famine to Teaching Tai Chi to Millions.

Stephanie won Carol E. Wyer’s Grumpy Old Menopause.

Barbara won Uno, a celebration of games on George Schalter’s post.

Shirley, Beth, Vickie, and Sandy won a trio of Lubrigyn products.
Menopause

Happy Fourth Birthday to Friend for the Ride!

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Happy Fourth Birthday to Friend for the Ride! Thanks to readers old and new for your enthusiasm and your kind words!

Because he’s a lot cuter than I am, I present the celebratory photo above of my grandson Maze blowing out the candles on his third birthday cake (some candles are hidden in front of the flowers). The blog is one year older than Maze!

Here’s my very first post: The Roller Coaster Ride.

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Here’s one of my happiest posts: The Baby Is Here.

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And another: Final Update: The Wedding.

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A bittersweet post and perhaps some of my strongest writing: Losing Mom: a Life in the Details.

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And one of my quirkiest (or grittiest) posts: The Museum of Menstruation, Oh My. Menopause springs surprises on you. Never in a zillion months of periods would I have thought I’d talk about them online, much less post such a distasteful picture!

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Thanks to all of you who have sent me guest posts over the years. Here’s the very first guest post, written by my good friend across the street, Susan Bellinger: Creative Procrastination: Try It. You’ll Like it.

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Thanks to my literary agent, Erzsi Deak, for encouraging me to create an online menopause presence. I love her advice: “Make everyone want to go through menopause so they will buy this book” (my book–yet to find a publisher).

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And thanks to my husband Cliff, Pickle Counting King, for snapping so many ladies room doors when I leave my phone at home.

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To finish this birthday post, I’m pretending I’m Miss Nancy on Romper Room.

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I’m peering through my magic glass at all of you and saying, “Thanks to Carol and Judy and Susan and Gail and Michele and Sue and Phyllis and Marylou and Vickie and Karoline and Cheryl and Stephanie and Shirley and Pam and Erzsi and Ann and Sirena and Miriam and Haralee and Amy and Vickie and Beth and Bernie and Ed and James and Cliff (yes, men!) and Kathy and Cathy and Suzanne and Judith and Patti and Lisa and Wanda and JoAnn and Linda and Kath and Laura and Candace and Janet and Nancy and Rebecca and Teresa and Barbara and Penny and Wendy and Adela and Carla and and Brenda and Greta and Theresa and Heartpeace and Diane and Silvia and Joan and Rena and Ruthie and Mo and Chris and Cindy and Claritza and Bonnie and Jama and Debbie and Becky and Cyn and Elaina and and Andrea and Bonnie and Meg and Sharon and Kimberly and Sandy and Ruth and Edna and Chickie and Crystal and Ellen and Paula.”

If I didn’t write your name, let me know, and I’ll add it! Love each and every one of you.

Romper Room: Here’s the history of my first favorite TV show, which originated in my hometown of Baltimore.

Menopause

Paid Focus Group Opportunity for Post-menopausal Women

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An announcement from Focus Pointe Global. I’m hoping some of my readers will be interested in participating!

Did you know that going through menopause can actually help you earn money?

Many marketing research companies, such as Focus Pointe Global, are looking for post-menopausal women for their opinions on medications, advertisements, and other products. Focus Pointe Global is a national marketing research company with 18 locations across the country that conducts focus groups, online surveys, product tests and more. They have an interactive website for their panel members at www.focusgroup.com, where you can register and fill out your personal profile. Participating in a focus group or product test is a fun and easy way to earn some extra spending money – from $75 to $300 for only a couple of hours of your time.

Currently, we are looking for women between the ages of 45 and 74 who are using Forteo for a Paid Focus Group. There are several discussion groups that are taking place during the week of September 28th in Chicago, IL and Bala Cynwyd, PA.

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This will take up just 1 hour of your time, and you will walk out with $100 in your pocket. If you are located in one of these areas and interested, we invite you to take a questionnaire to see if you are eligible by clicking one of the studies below:

Bala Cynwyd locationhttp://bit.ly/87204CC

Chicago Location- http://bit.ly/87205CF

If you have any further questions regarding this study please email fpg-intern@focuspointe.org

If you don’t qualify but know someone in Chicago or Philadelphia who might, please forward the link. Thanks!

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I received compensation from Focus Pointe Global for posting this announcement. I support research studies!

Menopause

More Menopause Cartoons!

Hot Flash Stripper

Last February, Healthline asked me to come up with concepts for menopause cartoons. What fun! Illustrator Julia Selutina drew the whimsical characters and brought my cartoon ideas to life.

The cartoon above is one of my favorites because my mom’s good friend Kathleen Taylor actually came up with the idea, not me. Thanks, Kathy! She based it on the story of a friend, who in the middle of a hot flash, tore off all of her clothes.

Tampon Tree

I really did have a hard time deciding what to do with my remaining tampons. I wrote one of my first blog posts, “Toot-a-loo Tampons!” about the dilemma. You can read it here. I remember how nervous and bold I felt posting a picture of tampons online. Ha! Little did I know what else I’d write about on this blog.

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Speaking of the winds of menopause, a new reader, Michele, contacted me after finding my article on the Hormone Health Network. The article helped her realize that her emotional (and physical) issues were related to hormones, not larger health issues. Michele is doing well now and has a guest post coming up for us soon.

Even the worst hot flash or the grumpiest day is a bit lighter if we sprinkle in some humor. I had a great time coming up with these cartoon ideas. Thanks, Healthline!

Check out Healthline’s menopause articles, including this one on symptoms of menopause.

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Check out the Hormone Health Network’s great resource, the Menopause Map that helps you explore your personal journey to menopause.

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Menopause

My Cancer Story: One Year Checkup!

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At my post-op visit following surgery for endometrial cancer in July, 2014, my oncologist explained that for the next few years, I would visit her at UNC Hospital and then six months later, my gynecologist. So at the one year mark, it was the gynecologist’s turn. Love Dr. Freid! I wrote here about his kindness when he called with my diagnosis last June.

Although it can manifest itself other ways, endometrial cancer tends to return as vaginal cancer. Yikes! Talk about a creepy thought…

As I sat in the waiting room of Chapel Hill OBGYN, my cancer visits and tests flashed into my mind, but I mostly thought happy thoughts. Surgery behind me and with a good prognosis, it’s fun to watch the pregnant women come and go. Been there, done that.

Dr. Freid’s nurse asked me a bundle of questions. Then she instructed me to put on the gown and walked out the door. The gown felt crisper than most and its styling a bit more chic. Fast photo op! In the shot above, note Dr. Freid’s framed ice hockey articles. In the photo below, see  the girl parts chart. An interesting contrast for a gynecologist’s examining room.

In came Dr. Freid with his nurse and a medical student in tow. Dr. Fried’s joke-telling took longer than the exam. “Looks good,” he said.

Five minutes later, back in my street clothes and seated in his office, we talked  about the roller coaster I’ve experienced since the surgery.

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“I hit you over the head when I called with the diagnosis,” Dr. Freid said. “I told you that you probably didn’t have cancer, and you did.”(An ultrasound had revealed fibroids, which he suspected were the cause of the spotting. The D and C was just a precaution). He leaned forward in his black leather chair. “I’d be shocked if you didn’t have some emotional moments.”

When I left, I thanked him, again, for saving my life, twice. (Dr. Freid nailed me on my blood pressure during my first visit, and that’s now under control.)

Then I did what I always do. I went to the mall across the street. I grabbed samples from Southern Season, a gourmet food store, and debated if I should get Chick-Fil-A for lunch or something a bit more nutritious.

As I made the decision, I walked with spring in my step. Happy One Year Cancer Anniversary to me!

P.S. If you’re scheduled for a hysterectomy, please don’t hesitate to contact me. I’d be glad to share my experience, which went well. My email is on the right.

Menopause

Pumpkin Seeds and Your Bladder! (and a Sample Giveaway)

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Nothing shouts fall like pumpkins! And nothing makes this blogger happier than iced cookies. Here’s an older post that boasts a cookie of cookies: A Celebration Cookie. 

My pumpkin cookie above, purchased at Panera the other day, was delish, and it didn’t have any seeds or squish. Imagine the seeds and squish in these real pumpkins that won prizes at the North Carolina State Fair last fall.

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Speaking of pumpkin seeds, The Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine, on the website of the U.S. National Library of Medicine, published this article on the efficacy of pumpkin seed for urinary issues.

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AZO Bladder Control has created a supplement from pumpkin seeds and soy. They tell us: ” The active ingredient in AZO Bladder Control contains clinically-studied Go-Less, a drug-free, naturally sourced supplement comprised of pumpkin seed extract and soybean isoflavones; ingredients that are proven to support healthy bladder activity and enforce bladder strength. Pumpkin seed extract supports bladder muscle integrity while the soy isoflavones help relax bladder muscles and sustain muscular strength in the pelvic floor.”

Samples: AZO is offering free samples to the first ten readers to respond. Simply enter a comment saying you’d like a sample. Be sure to leave your email address, and I will contact you for your snail mail address. Sample offer ends on October 5. Thanks!

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To learn more AZO Bladder Control, visit this page on their website. To learn more about other AZO products, click  here.  See their Facebook page here.

I can’t resist leaving you with one more pumpkin picture, a preschool pumpkin, created by daughter Kath many years ago.

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This post is sponsored by AZO Bladder Control.