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Maldives

Our last trip of 2016 was to the Maldives. Last year was one full of excursions, We traveled to Cameroon, Paris, Bali, Hawaii, New Orleans, New York, Chicago, Lake Tahoe, Atlanta, Napa, San Francisco, Dubai, and I must say Read more

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Both of my kids are in New York, my son is in school in the Hudson Valley and my daughter is living in Brooklyn and working. So we are officially empty nesters, and have been so for a while Read more

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January is in the past! We so eagerly celebrated and welcomed the New Year and now it is just a memory. Some of us have already fallen off the new commitments we made and that is okay. Just start Read more

aging

Some days I feel “OLD”

Posted on by Gigi in Aging 2 Comments

GIGI

Some days I feel “OLD”. Maybe it is because I recommitted to writing my blog and I am missing out on sleep, staying up late. Or maybe time is just going by and along with that comes age.

Things I’ve observed that let me know I’m sorta old…

Retirement. I think about that now and wonder how will I maintain my lifestyle in “retirement” or will I ever be able to afford to retire.

I worry about my kids and their lives. How will they make it? Will they be able to take care of themselves when I am gone.

Wrinkles and grey hair. No explanation needed. I’m just not ready to embrace the silver grey hair trend, so off to the colorist I go. And thinning hair…it is a good thing I had a lot of hair back in the day, now it is manageable.

As much as I love high heels, all of a sudden flats are looking real cute lately.

The body, hmmm lets just say there is a shift, and I am fighting it in every way I can…

The reading glasses, what an annoyance, I feel like I can’t move without them.

Young people, the 20 something year olds, like to explain things to me, information about social media, like snap chat or artists that I am not familiar with. Often times they share with me that I am older than their parents and that they have noticed that their parents are slowing down.

The little aches here and there, that I did not have before, like waking up in the morning and I have to stretch, just so I can get moving properly.

Makeup- it really is not an option. It is a mandate, at least lipstick, mascara and concealer.

And what is up with lotion, I am constantly slathering it on all day, I don’t remember doing that when I was “young”.

And lastly…sometimes I am in denial about this one, but I forget stuff, sometimes important things, like names of people that I should know, or a note in my calendar that I wrote and I have no clue what it is. Just writing in a real calendar, instead of my phone is old, lol.

But with all these reminders of aging, I will say along with the years, comes a certain confidence. An attitude where not much bothers you, your tolerance for BS is low, you know how to eliminate it from years of experience. I’m living an authentic life, just being real and embracing my path, stopping off here and there to explore.

How are you navigating the aging process? I’d love to know…

Xoxo,

Gigi

Gigi

 

 


Timelessness

Posted on by Gigi in Aging Comments Off on Timelessness

Gigi

Timelessness is what I am striving for- age is becoming like a friend that I have a love/hate relationship with. The friend that you really love, the one that will “check” you when you are wrong and “call you out” we all have one. I can’t outsmart my age- it is what it is…I’ve never been interested in guarding it like a top secret pass word protected number (“56” soon to be “57”) shhhhh. I know some like to elude to being a younger age that has past many moons ago, and I get it, there is a lot of age discrimination going on out there especially in the work place.

Some of us grew up with moms that taught us to hide our age, and most of us have been told “never ask a lady her age” because it is not polite. Not polite because? I wonder when that phenomenon started- denying ones age? It is just an arbitrary number that rises once a year, a time that I look forward to celebrating being me and my existence.

Beauty does not have to be defined or constrained by a number- even if we live in a society that gives out expiration dates. Being a photographer I have captured numerous young gorgeous ingenues. I can photograph them at high noon, late night , early morning and they always look beautiful, I on the other hand have to be a little more particular about the light I’m photographed in and that is ok. The important thing is to do what gives you pleasure- explore, never stop learning and continue to be the best version of you.

Celebrate your “good” whether it is your career, fabulous body, personality, family, loving eyes, compassionate spirit, yoga moves, etc. just remember you are your number 1 fan.

Happy Tuesday,

Gigi


My new year…

Posted on by Gigi in Aging Comments Off on My new year…
Gigi in Bali

Gigi in Bali

So in a little over 3 months I will celebrate another birthday. Yes, I’m getting older but I am happy to be here to celebrate. For me, my birthday is a lot like New Year’s, I start preparing for it in advance, my own personal year end. Typically it begins with the intense recommitment to my workout program, which I have been slacking on lately, along with a revamp of my diet. Next I come up with an event, or gathering I want to do, and then the planning for that starts. Then, I come up with the lists of what I what do for the following year, career goals, things I want to learn, places I want to go etc.. And lastly, the appointments, I have this thing that I want to have all my personal maintenance done, such as fresh hair color and cut, maybe a facial, trip to the Korean spa, all of this the week leading up to my birthday, which is July 28.

Growing up I had a few birthday parties, one at 6, a slumber party when I turned 12, a little beach party at 18, a 25th birthday party given by a boyfriend, ten years would pass till the next party at 35. From 35 on I started celebrating every year making up for all the ones I felt I missed.

This year I won’t have a party, maybe a small dinner at home with a few friends over, something with my girlfriends, and perhaps a weekend away with Reggie somewhere local, like Santa Barbara.

How do you celebrate your birthday? Are you the party type or do you like to have quiet celebrations and not draw attention to another year gone by, and another number added to your age. Please share I’d love to know…

Gigi @ 25

This is a pic from my 25th birthday party- I remember being so happy that day- My boyfriend at the time hosted a party for me- I felt so grown up!

Gigi @ 40

This is from my 40th birthday- I remember feeling so old once my 30’s were over…now 40 seems so young!

This is from a 40 something Pole dancing party I had with my girlfriends-

This is from a 40 something birthday Pole dancing party I had with my girlfriends- and my long dark hair…

Gigi with flat ironed hair

My 50th Birthday party- was a blast! Now 50 even seems  “young”…

51

For my 51 birthday I had a pool party-

52

52 hmmmm I was is a real pink phase- dinner party 

Gigi breaking the speed limit-55

Gigi breaking the speed limit-55

Have a fabulous Monday- embrace today by recommitting to something- join me in bumping up your workout if you have been slacking off like me…

Xoxo,

Gigi

 


Women of a certain “age”…

Posted on by Gigi in Aging 4 Comments
Gigi

Gigi

Today I was cruising one of my many “private” photography group pages and there was a picture of a striking woman and the post read “still obsessing with this 57 yo ;)”. Various comments followed mostly stating how “good” she looked for her age etc. and then one person wanted to see the SOOC (straight out of camera version) implying that there must have been a lot of photoshop done to the image. The SOOC was posted it was obvious that not much had been done to the pic and this is just how this woman looked. More comments followed, most in amazement of how “good” she looked once again for her age.

Being the 56 year old that I am I was reminded that women of a “certain age” are considered the exception if they still are deemed attractive by the powers that be- the group of judges that determines when a woman’s attractive meter has stopped functioning and she has sadly “lost it”.

So many women are not bound by the constraint of numbers or someone else’s beauty standard. I look in the mirror and I see the reflection of a woman who has lived, spent some time in the sun before sunblock was the de rigueur. A face that has smiled for 50 plus years and has the imprint to prove it.

Most of us are juggling various ages- our biological age and the age of our heart and spirit, which has nothing to do with our years of the planet. The inner age that tells you that you can pull off skinny jeans, a bikini, or start a new career. Having a positive attitude and being kind all contribute to a timeless, ageless beauty that shines from within, the best anti-age serum.

To be 20, 30 or even 40 again would be a curse, because the woman I am the today is the product of all those years in the making.

Xoxo,

Gigi

Age has no reality except in the physical world-

Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Gigi @ 40

Gigi @ 40

 

 


56 WTF?

Posted on by Gigi in Aging Comments Off on 56 WTF?
gigi @ 56

gigi @ 56

Today is the first day of my new year. 56, a number that seems  is old middle age, mature, a woman of a “certain” age, that is what comes to my mind when I hear that number. This number that is closer yet to a “bigger” significant number the- big “60”.

Lately I have been photographing incredibly beautiful young models. Part of the process is the editing of these images, it is here that I am reminded that even the “best” of us will fall into the arms of father time. I am reminded that I used to have long thick hair, a tight body and a laissez faire attitude. These are faces that have not smiled as much as mine, or have seen as much sadness. Faces that giggle about new boyfriends, legs that peek out of short shorts, tousled messy hair that looks so right, random odd jobs that keep them busy, and that anticipation of the next audition, or the big break that will soon come.

pretty girls

pretty girls

I have embraced the physical changes ( not that I really have a choice) my kinky curly “do” gives the illusion of a lot of hair, trust me it has thinned out a lot. The body looks pretty good dressed and a little better than okay undressed. The eyes, well lets just say I have joined the ranks of those that have numerous glasses all over the house.

big hair don't care

big hair don’t care

Or how I really do have to take a moment to find my “good” side prior to the shutter snapping, holding my chin just so. I have to hydrate non-stop, especially if I indulge in a glass or 2 of wine. But even with all these changes, I’m at a good place with my self and who I am. There is a sense of comfort that comes with the 50’s, you realize “it is what it is…” You are not going to be transformed to your former 30 year-old self, and that is okay, nor become the next President, just saynin’. Mistakes I have made have contributed to the centered woman I am today. I’m more authentic which is good and bad, good for being who I really am, and bad for sharing my thoughts, thoughts that are at times not invited.

I’m at a point where I don’t have time for the ridiculous anymore. There are places I want to go, experiences I want to have, things I want to see. A sort of urgency where you feel as if you have to focus, especially if you were a late bloomer, like moi. My inner circle is shrinking a bit, I’m satisfied  with those that are “easy” and accepting. I still enjoy spending time with my husband and now that our son is about to depart for college that is a good thing.

As I reflect on this past year I am happy to be present, there are so many that have departed, I am reminded often- the news of death, something I don’t recall hearing about when I was younger. Life is truly a gift.

So as this day comes to an end, take a moment for yourself and cherish wherever you are on your life journey-

Xoxo,

Gigi

 


55 ways to embrace being 50 plus…

Posted on by Gigi in 50 ways Comments Off on 55 ways to embrace being 50 plus…

A while back I made a 50 ways to age graceful list, but so many of my friends joining the 50 plus ranks, I wanted to do a revised list, now that I have 5 years post under my belt .Yes, 50 is certainly a milestone birthday, especially for women. Aging is not always embraced, but I can certainly tell you the alternative is not good, so no matter where you are in your life journey- celebrate your admission to this elite “golden” club.

Gigi breaking the speed limit-55

Gigi breaking the speed limit-55

So here is my new list:

1. At “50” things that you thought were important are not- let it go.

2. Keep up your appearance, this is not the time to stop your grooming.

3. Embrace your age- no one is going to believe you are still in your 20’s anyway.

4. Address your personal shit and handle it…

5. Forget about what is age appropriate and do what feels right.

6. Practice yoga, pilates, etc. you don’t want to get stiff- stay flexible and if you have not been practicing it is never to late to start.

6A. Mediate- just started this and let me tell you it is a game changer…

7. Appreciate the first 50 years and know that those 50 years made you the person  you are today.

8. Wear makeup, especially concealer and remember less is more.

9. Walk daily- park far away, whenever you can etc. just get it in…wear one of those tracking devices if you need accountability – I love fitbit.

10. Celebrate every birthday with friends and family and do something special and of course drink champagne-the good stuff.

11. Take a class in something, keep your brain active.

12. Remember “sitting” is the new “smoking” get up and move.

13. Take responsibility for “you”.

14. Learn a new language.

15. Do something different with your hair color, try a new style especially if you have been rocking the same “do” for the past 20 years.

16. Be modest with your face if you decide to go the botox/filler route, you don’t want to start looking odd.

17. Smile more…

18. Travel, even if you have to go solo.

19. Get your sleep- at least 8 hours.

20. Have a few younger friends – you can teach each other a few things.

21. Be charming and gracious.

22. Work at being your best weight.

23. Take care of your skin and continue to wear sunscreen.

24. Start a journal- or perhaps write a memoir.

25. hydrate- Drink a  lot of water daily.

26. Wear good lingerie.

27. Get dressed up just because.

28. Set goals for your 50’s and 60’s.

29. Splurge.

30. Be want you want to be, regardless of what others may think…

30A. See whoever you want to see regardless of what others think.

31. Accept the “you” of today, don’t wish for the 20 or 30 year old you- just concentrate on being the best “you” right now.

32. Laugh and find humor in everyday life.

33. Forgive yourself for the past.

34. Volunteer for something you are passionate about.

35. If you are a mother or a grandmother, don’t let that define you.

36. Take more baths.

37. Don’t focus on menopause.

38. Have a love affair with your partner-

39. Arrange flowers.

39A. Listen to music.

40. Use and wear the “good” stuff…nice jewelry , china etc..

41. Strength train.

41A. Dance.

42. Have good posture.

43. Believe that dreams can still come true.

44. Wear sexy pretty shoes, even if they are flat- Don’t give in to sensible shoes…

45. Flaunt your assets. If you have nice legs wear something short.

46. Get out of your comfort zone and do something different.

47. Make your surroundings beautiful.

48. Don’t drink to excess.

49. Get more massages.

50. Explore eastern medicine.

51. Prepare meals with all your heart and soul.

52. Have a spiritual base.

53. Be open to receive love.

54. Respect and spend time with your sister-friends.

55. Live each day to the fullest and don’t take life for granted.

55A. Stay interesting…read. Know what is going on in the world.

Did I miss anything? Let me know any that you have on your list.

Happy Wednesday!

Xoxo,

Gigi

self portrait #10

self portrait #10

 


5 Things I No Longer believe About Aging.

Posted on by Gigi in Aging Comments Off on 5 Things I No Longer believe About Aging.

5 Things I no longer believe about aging.

1. Menopause is this horrific situation.

I’m fortunate in that I am still waiting for that hot flash, but if or when I get one I ‘ll just have a collection of fabulous little fans. Yes, menopause is the official marker that there are no more babies coming out of this body and that too is okay. Middle age is whatever you want it to be, I know some 50 plus ladies that could give the 20 plus girls a run for the money. It is all a mind set and how you take care of your self physically and mentally. I don’t know what I was expecting, I come from a family where no one talks about the “change” so I did not know what was going to happen if anything.

2. Don’t wear your hair to long.

Well after my Fresh & Fabulous event…I’m a believer in whatever makes you feel good. No, I’m not going to get a waist length weave or anything but if I’m wanting a “look” for an event or something, why not? Life is short.

Gigi

Gigi

 

3. Accept a “middle age” body.

Hell no!!! Yes it is a lot more work to keep things from shifting, but I am going out fighting. I enjoy having a waist line and want to keep one even if it means a little more time or a lot more time in the gym. Watching my diet and eating “clean” are a way of life. This does not mean never indulging, for me it is choices, skipping desert for a nice glass of champagne etc.. My body may not be what it was when I was in my 20’s, but I’m constantly working on being the best 50 plus body.

24 year old GIGI

24 year old GIGI

4. Fillers and Botox are for “Beverly Hills Housewives”.

As I continue to mature, I’m doing my homework and staying on top on the latest in skin care and anti aging solutions. No, I don’t want to look ridiculous or anything, but I know there will be a time sooner than later where I’m going to explore some options. Some days I look in the mirror and give myself a nod of approval, and other days I look and I see an older lady who looks like me. Yes I drink gallons of water, use lots of lotions and potions, but the aging process skips no one and for me it is not wanting to look “younger” I just want to look good for my age.

5. Don’t wear bikinis, minis or shorts if you are over 50.

I used to read this a lot in those articles about dressing for your age, but there are exceptions. If your legs are fabulous why not? It is that simple, wear what makes you happy and feel good about yourself. If you can walk in 4 inch heels rock those too, I do. Why should women of a certain age be banished to one piece bathing suits? Break the rules.

legs

legs

What is your philosophy on aging? I loved to hear…

Happy Thursday,

Gigi

Logo_1698


What’s your take on aging?

Posted on by Gigi in Aging Comments Off on What’s your take on aging?

Came across this article in the New Yorker 25 quotes from famous women on aging.  Love this one from Dolly Parton:

“I will never retire unless I have to. As long as I’m able to get up in the morning, get that makeup on and my high heels on, and even if I can’t wear high heels, I’m going to do like Mae West, I’m going to sit in a wheelchair with my high heels on.”

Gigi’s take on aging:

Aging is a part of life, I have loved each decade for different reasons. Childhood- no matter what was going on with the adults I still had many happy moments, teen years were the discovery years of exploring and sampling the good and lots of bad, 20’s the rebel years, against all odds, just out there in the world, 30’s motherhood, wife-hood, figuring out who am I and what is my purpose, 40’s I’m a full fledge confidant woman working on me and doing whatever I want to do, 50’s living the la vida loca, yes I can be a photographer, yes I can say “no” when I need to and if something is not working I know it is okay to quit.

As time goes by and you experience loss, heartbreak and sadness you realize that each day is a gift and you have to exhale, stretch your body and conquer each day, look for the joy and squash the negativity and always find a reason to celebrate.

Another thing, came across this article about how “skinny jeans” are out– (btw after I finally figured out what brand fit my big butt and thighs) and  flare leg jeans are back. The good thing about being 50 something is that you have seen all the trends over and over. I chuckle to myself when I think about my mom telling me about when something was in “style” a long time ago, well guess what- I’m doing the same thing. The good news is I still have my flare jeans, something told me to hold on to them.

And lastly, with everything that is going in the world, why is Bey’s new bangs making all the headlines? Or last weeks reference to her “mom” do…hehehe as India Arie says ” I am not my hair”…

Bey's mommie do and her new bangs...

Bey’s mommie do and her new bangs…

photo-150

Happy Wednesday

Xoxo,

Gigi

fresh highlights

fresh highlights

 


Who Are You?

Posted on by Gigi in Aging, Well-Being 8 Comments

Browsing the net I came across this article about “Describe yourself in 5 words.” I thought long and hard and these are the words I came up with: WRITER, PHOTOGRAPHER, WIFE, MAMA & EVOLVING .

Gigi

Gigi

It was difficult to narrow my list down to only 5 words, I like to think of myself as this complex individual, and it would certainly take more than 5 words to describe moi. I realized that throughout my life these words would have changed numerous times. Growth and change are a part of life, it is what keeps us interesting. I thought about what others see me as compared to who I see…the public image versus the private one- or are they the same…well I think you all know I am an open book, I share everything, I’m very transparent almost to a fault.

In my 20’s it was SINGLE, EXPLORER, BOHO, DREAMER, ENTREPRENEUR. Moving on to my 30’s it was MARRIED, MOTHER, VOLUNTEER, CONFORMIST, QUESTIONING.

Gigi @ 25

Gigi @ 25

Nov 18 1996

Nov 18 1996

Late 30’s early 40’s PHYSICAL, KINKY-CURLY, DESIGNER, TRAVELER, STUDENT Mid-40’s another shift, FOLLOWER, VEGAN, FOCUSED, WIFE, MOTHER.

Reinvent

Reinvent

Gigi's Graduation 2006

Gigi’s Graduation 2006

Gigi & Ele

Gigi & Ele

Late 40’s PERI-MENOPAUSE, SKIER, WIFE, MOTHER, DISCOVERER.

How would you describe yourself in 5 words? I’d love to know…

Happy Wednesday,

XOXO,

GIGI


50 WAYS TO AGE EFFORTLESSLY, WITH STYLE AND FINESSE

Posted on by Gigi in 50 ways 2 Comments
Gigi @ 54

Gigi @ 54

50 WAYS TO AGE EFFORTLESSLY, WITH STYLE AND FINESSE

1. Celebrate every birthday as if it were a milestone

2. Practice yoga or pilates or both- a flexible spine is a young spine

3. Challenge yourself–never stop learning

4. Stay engaged with LIFE

5. Stop being angry- it’s not worth it in the long run

6. Strength Train ie. weight training-your bones will “thank you”

7. Love and admire your children/grandchildren/nieces/ nephews

8. Have fresh flowers all the time

9. Walk daily

10. Use your “good” stuff ie. crystal, china, silver etc.

11. Be present in the moment- enjoy the duration of the day

12. Be a role model

13. Wear lipstick

14. Be your best “you” today and stop trying to be the “you” of the past

15. Celebrate the good in your life- forget the negative

16. keep the passion with your partner and/ or if solo don’t be afraid of LOVE

17. Menopause- embrace the change

18. Take long baths with fragrant oils

19. Drink good champagne–just because

20. Change your hair if you have been wearing the same “do” for 20 plus years

21. Keep dreaming

22. Continue to shop- but know what works for you- be picky only buy things you LOVE

23. Volunteer- make a difference

24. Have a spiritual base

25. Forgive and Forget

26. Watch your posture

27. Eat clean- preferably a plant based diet with lots of raw organic farm to table produce

28. Invest in a good bed and make your bedroom a retreat

29. Be a creature like no other

30. laugh aloud and find humor in everything

31. Dance

32. Pay attention to your appearance- don’t give into middle age frumpy

33. Watch your weight

34. Don’t fear love- never stop dabbling in it…

35. Make time for friends

36. Wear pretty, sexy non sensible shoes

37. Accept that it is OK that you don’t look 22- embrace whatever age you are and “work it”

38. Sleep get your rest.

39. Don’t be a fool for fashion- have your own style

40. Wear lovely lingerie

41. Douse yourself with perfume

42. Travel

43. Smile

44. Don’t do things to contort your face- you won’t look younger

45. Unleash your blocks, whatever they may be

46. Break the rules on what “blank” age is supposed to be

47. Indulge in whatever your heart desires

48. don’t drink excessively- it never looks good

49. Continue to create and discover new interests

50. FALL IN LOVE WITH YOU!

My weekend is starting early Friday, I will be in New Orleans via a red eye flight tonight.

New Orleans

New Orleans

 

Happy Thursday

Xoxo,

Gigi

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