Goodbye Period: Five Reasons I’m Happy and Five Reasons I’m Sad


Date of my most recent period?

2007, I think.

Nothing like filling out the form at your gynecologist’s office to make  you realize your period days really are over.

When you’re in the midst of periods, you think it’s going to be fabulous to be done.

But to my surprise, I found some bittersweet elements to being finished with periods.

And I’m delighted that Period! Magazine published my reflections. Read my article, “Goodbye Period! Five Reasons I’m Happy and Five Reasons I’m sad” right here.

Here’s the Dutch version. Very exciting to have my words translated.

What about you? If you’re finished, do you miss your period at all?

If not, can you even imagine missing your period?

And from our friends at Slumber Cloud, some herbal ideas and tea recipes for those in perimenopause and those in menopause.

The Ladies Room Doors of Italy: Part Three



Cliff and I planned three nights in Rome at the end of the trip since we were flying home from the Rome airport. We thought we might be worn out by the time we got there. We weren’t! We loved Rome!

And I found great doors at our first Roman cafe. We sipped wine as we faced the Pantheon.

The ladies room is at the top of the post. His below:

I wondered if we’d find red-checked tablecloths in Italy, and we did.

Loved our room. Red certainly seems to be the color of Rome.

We took an official tour of the Colosseum

Where I found this kitty pondering life in ancient times.

Loved the Forum. I had no idea it covered such a large area. Acres of old, old, old buildings.

Now for some more bathroom signs. I bumped into this lady at the Ristorante Il Mirragio

And this hand-painted sign pointing the way.


This photo is a bit hard to decipher, but this door leads to the ladies room at the Vatican.

I loved seeing the Vatican. Definitely a bucket list experience. The map room is gorgeous.

And I was mesmerized by St. Peter’s Basilica.

As a child in 1965, I saw the Pieta at the New York World’s Fair. What joy to see her again, in her own home.

Photography is forbidden in the Sistine Ceiling. We were given serious warnings, so I didn’t dare.

We don’t see many nuns in North Carolina, but you do at the Vatican. Loved this shot of a nun on her cell phone. The times they have changed. Sister Power!


Here’s the bathroom door at the Ristorante L’Arcano. I’m not exactly sure what the sign  below means.

And I’m not sure where I found this one:

Or this one:


This elegantly dressed lady lives on the door of the Trattoria Romano

Where we got delicious pizza. I never tired of the pasta. Cliff never tired of the pizza.


On our last night in Rome, we toasted the trip with bubbly.

From antipasto to dessert, we went overboard at that last supper.

Loved our table under the stars.


I snapped my final ladies room door of the trip at the airport. Not sure what the green spongy stuff is supposed to represent.

And these sinks were way cool. You just touched the symbol for water, soap, or air.

My Pinocchio now lives on my kitchen shelf, and reminds me of a wonderful vacation.

Mae and Cleo Moisturizers: Info and a Giveaway!



Here’s some info and a giveaway from the folks at Damiva:

Damiva was founded by Chia Chia Sun, a cancer geneticist and epidemiologist from Toronto. Several years ago, while doing a large cancer study, she was struck by how the women were experiencing all the  symptoms of menopause; further research taught her that there weren’t good products on the market that were safe and effective over the long term, so she and her partner developed their own.

Damiva products are made by women for women; they are all-natural, chemical- and hormone-free, and are safe for women to use for 30 or more years. They consist of Mae, a vaginal moisturizer suppository, and Cleo, a labial moisturizer cream; both are designed to relieve symptoms like dryness, painful or uncomfortable intercourse, recurring vaginal infections, etc. that, as you know, can come with menopause and perimenopause, or can be a result of cancer treatment or from taking certain medication regimens (like antidepressants, allergy medications & antihistamines, etc.).


The mission of Damiva is not only to give women the healthy and safe products they need as they age, but also to help overcome or put aside the taboos and stigmas that stop women from talking about, asking about, learning about, and taking charge of their health as they age. She writes: “We now spend half our lives after the age of 40 in peri-menopause and menopause. It’s time for women to start thinking about their pelvic health as early as in our 30s.”

We want the years over 40 to be the best years of a woman’s life.  And we want all women to have a happy and healthy vajayjay!  So Damiva uses cheeky humor to help women feel less shy talking about issues such as dryness, irritability, painful intercourse, etc.; the company slogan is “Enough beating around the bush – let’s talk about your vagina.”

The products are currently available in Target,, CVS, and, as well as on the Damiva website.

Giveaway: Damiva is offering a box of Mae and a box of Cleo to one Friend for the Ride reader. For a chance to win, please enter a comment by October 31. Thanks!

Menopause Tips for Fairy Godmothers


I was digging through some old computer files and found these tips I wrote for an on-line interview. I can’t remember who asked me to write them or if they were ever posted. but I like them. Here they are:

Tip Number One: Embrace the change! Menopause makes you bolder. Go for it. Try a new hobby, ditch a mean friend, paint your living room a happy color, change up your clothing style, and/or find engaging volunteer work or a brand new job.

Tip Number Two: Be prepared for funky moods. The roller coaster emotions can swoop you up and back down again in minutes. Let family and friends know you’re on a wild ride. They can help you best if they understand that menopause is the cause of your moodiness.

Tip Number Three: Watch the calories. Give into the cravings just enough to calm them, but don’t go overboard. Experiment to find an exercise plan you can stick to. If it’s more fun than work, it’s the right plan for you.

Tip Number Four: Don’t panic when your libido takes a nose dive. Spontaneity is overrated. Make a date for romantic sex and keep the commitment. You’ll be amazed at how your gusto comes back once you get going.

Tip Number Five: Refrain from being overly self-critical. Instead, spoil yourself. Treat yourself. Forgive yourself.  Honor yourself. Become your own fairy godmother!

When I reread these tips last week, I realized how much I love the expression “Be your own fairy godmother.” I was thinking I was oh-so-creative to come up with it. Then I googled and saw others use the expression too, so I suspect I read it somewhere, and it’s not original. No matter who came up with the concept, it’s a great one.

That’s me as my own fairy godmother in the painting above. Now it’s your turn. Draw or paint yourself as your OWN fairy godmother. Post it where you will see it every day. Wave that wand right in your own direction, reread Tip Number Five, and then sail into action.