A Cool Course To Help Inspire The Course Of Your Life

Once many of us enter our mid-40s and 50s, we’re finally–and hopefully–starting to feel more secure about ourselves and our abilities than we did when we were in our 20s and 30s.


The Greatest Stocking Stuffers For Little Kids (And Their Parents, Too!)

When Michele Welsh and her husband were driving their three young children to a kiddie amusement park in 2008, they missed the exit and wound up close to the famous Hershey Park in Pennsylvania, so they decided to go there instead.

After they paid the “hefty admission fees,” and entered the park, Michele became nervous by the overwhelming size of the crowd, and suggested they leave. “Keeping track of three children at a large amusement park can be intimidating, even for the most diligent parents,” she said. They decided to stay, however, and that’s when Michele had an “aha” moment. (more…)

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Fame After 50: Loved It, Left It, Longs For It

This is the story of three real women—one in her late 70s, one in her early 60s, and one in her late 50s—who have either achieved fame, given up fame
or are on an endless quest for it.

Searching for
New-Found Fame

I recently met the woman in her late 70s, whose name is known to most of us over fifty. I’m not going to reveal her identity, however, because what I’m going to say probably wouldn’t delight her. Besides, her identity is less important than what she symbolizes.

This woman has enjoyed a great deal of professional and personal success throughout much of her adult life. I guess you could have even called her a “celebrity” from the 70s through the 90s. But while she has continued to do her craft, and has a great deal to offer others, her “star” doesn’t shine nearly as brightly as it once did. This is not because she’s any less talented now, but simply because the “world” in which she once circulated no longer exists. For one, the media that helped her attain fame—namely newspapers and magazines—don’t have the clout they once did. So even if she’s quoted and her photo appears in the New York Times this morning, no one much cares or thinks about it by noon. Second, she hasn’t created a powerful presence for herself on the Internet. She’s trying, but she lacks the digital marketing savvy she needs. No matter how successful she is at attracting real live audiences when she lectures, in person, that doesn’t translate to a great number of fans on her website or Facebook page.

Now, here’s the rub: This woman yearns for the good old days, when she would draw a crowd around her by just walking into a party, and the next morning her name would appear in all the papers, which only fueled her celebrity status. While chatting about the present, I sensed that her mind was focused far away from our conversation. Oh, she’s darn astute, I assure you, but seemed most “present” when she talked about the past. Part of the reason, I suppose, is that she lost her husband a number of years ago, a man with whom she enjoyed great happiness, both personally and professionally.


“Yay! Aren’t I An Accomplished, Smart, Successful and Lovely Person?”

When nice things happened to us, back in the day, we couldn’t wait to share the news with someone we loved. Found a new apartment? We rushed to the phone to call our best friend. Landed a dream job? Dad will be thrilled, we thought. Met a new guy? Mom will be tickled pink.

Now many of us “share” our good fortune with our world of “friends” on the internet. But we’re
doing more than sharing.

Shameless self-promotion is running rampant. One old-time PR person literally congratulates herself on Facebook every time she gets publicity for one of her accounts. For goodness sakes, that’s what these accounts are paying her to do!!!!! She sounds as if Steven Spielberg is going to make a major motion picture about the hair dryer account she represents, and we’d all better know about it.

Someone else devoted an entire blog to the news that a self-help book she wrote won a bronze award of some kind, and although she was going to keep it to herself, a friend told her she should, “by all means,” share the good word.

Have we taken to this audacious self-promotion to A) convince ourselves we’re stars in a world where everyone wants to be a star, B) simply brag, or C) enhance the lives of the 50 or 500 people we’re telling? The book award winner said that although she’s traditionally been reserved about telling anyone other than a couple of people about her accomplishments, she actually “admires people who state and share their success.”

I couldn’t disagree more. The classiest, really successful people do not state and share their success by blogging, tweeting, or instagramming about it. They let others share the news about them. An acquaintance, who happens to be one of the most brilliant, wealthiest men on the planet, never brags about his endless successes. Instead, The New York Times did devote two entire pages last week to an article about him.

A woman I know well was so publicly low-key about her successes, you’d never have guessed she was one of the most successful women on Wall Street. I still believe “actions speak louder than words.”

What we do and how we do it say
far more about us than flagrant self-aggrandizement. Just think
about Superman.

Do you tout your accomplishments?

How I Changed My Life At 51

This blog post is sponsored by MSD Consumer Care, Inc., the makers of Oxytrol® For Women.

I had risen through the ranks during my 23-year-career at a publishing company, to become an Executive Editor and Publisher. I had a six-figure salary, a great family health plan and I had been pretty much free to cultivate my own ideas for the publications I ran. I was pretty certain I’d still be an employee there when I died. Why not?

When I turned 51, in 1998, I suddenly thought I had to get out. I had given the company immeasurable passion, talent and time over two decades and continuously helped boost its “bottom line.” Why couldn’t I do the same things, but for my own business? Not only could I benefit financially; I could explore new avenues for my creativity, such as custom magazine publishing.


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A Dry Run

Alex and I took the train to Boston last week, where I was invited to participate in a panel called “Booming Tech,” presented by Washington Post Live, as part of its continuing event series covering pressing issues involving Washington and the world.

I’ve always enjoyed taking moderately long train rides, because I can pull out my laptop and work, but I wasn’t looking forward to this almost four-hour trip, because I’m not fond of restrooms on public transportation. Although I try to avoid using them, I now worry that I might have ‘little leaks,’ which can be induced by doing something as harmless as laughing hard. Making frequent visits to the bathroom usually can keep these occurrences to a minimum, but I preferred not to do that.

Alex and I love working together, and we also enjoy laughing, so I figured I’d have to make a four-hour, no-laugh vow. And if, heaven forbid, I was going to sneeze, I’d have to do my best to suppress it since that also can bring on those pesky little leaks. (By the way, I’ve learned this is a pretty common condition, affecting about 33 percent of women, and is officially called LBL, for light bladder leakage.)

Visiting the drugstore a couple of days before our trip, I spotted a Poise product called Microliners. The package says the “surprisingly absorbent and incredibly thin liners provide discreet protection and quickly lock away wetness and odor.” The package of 54 individually wrapped liners cost $5.99, which would last me months, so I decided to buy them.

The small and thin liner easily and firmly adhered to the crotch of my panties. I tried it. I liked it. And Alex and I had a few good laughs, to and from Boston.

By the way, I greatly enjoyed the “Booming Tech” event, which, as you can surmise, addressed how our generation is shaping the future of technology. I invite you to have a look, especially at P.J. O’Rourke and Bill Aulet. And, of course, yours truly.

Staness and I Ate Like Women


What do you serve to a friend whose revolutionary new book, Eat Like A Woman, is going to be featured on one of the two big morning shows next month?


You serve her one of the dishes from her book, of course!!!

My beautiful, talented and all-around wonderful pal, Staness Jonekos, flew in from LA this week for a media tour, so I decided to cook a Honey-Glazed Spiced Pork Tenderloin for her, from a recipe in Eat Like A Woman.

The elegant recipe was simple to follow and took under 20 minutes to put together. The two-pound pork tenderloin cooked in about 25 minutes.

The dish was light and scrumptious. Slightly spicy and sweet at the same time (it’s made with a dash of cayenne pepper, as well as honey), I served it with broccoli and garlic. Pork tenderloin is super lean, extremely low in fat, sodium and cholesterol, and full of protein.

I’m not going to give you the recipe here because I want you to buy the book, but here are the nutrition facts for 3 ounces of pork tenderloin: 122 calories, 3 grams of fat, 0 carbs, 0 sugar and 22 grams of protein. As Staness would say: “Yummers!”

Eat Like A Woman is not a cookbook. It’s worlds better because it tells us what we should eat, why we should eat it, and when we should eat it. The recipes in the back are bonuses.

I’m tempted to next make the Dolly Parton’s Hello Dolly Bars. Staness is crazy about them. They’re not dietetic but, as my friend says: “Practice portion control and you don’t need to diet.”