A BOOK COVER – THE FIRST IMPRESSION

The cover of a book is your first contact with an author and his story.

If you have been to my website and read my blogs you will have seen the cover of my book Getting Over Growing Older with the header displaying a photo of me.

Since the reaction of the  buyers always was “Oh, that’s a nice picture of you” and since that was not the reaction I had expected or the message I wanted to convey, I decided to change the cover – and instead of smiling at you, I hope the new cover will tell you more clearly what the book is about, namely sharing my personal experience of growing older, and assuring women in their 40s or 50s plus that growing older is not only about going down hill. But it gives us a chance to enjoy life in many new and interesting ways.

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Now that you have seen the new cover I would mean a lot to me if you would tell me how you like it. Please leave a comment or email me at bbnnic@gmail.com

Thank you so much

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And never forget – A Smile Changes Everything

Brigitte

 

 

 

THE GOLDEN GIRLS

 

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  • We watched them
  • We laughed with them
  • We thought they were funny
  • We loved them

But today so many years later it looks like the writers of this TV show were ahead of their time. They addressed a need and gave a solution for something so many seniors  are facing today, namely living alone. And for most of these older people it is not their choice, but a reality which is hard to change, and which circumstances of life have imposed on them.

So here come the Golden Girls – not long ago I read an article – sorry I forgot the name of the publication – but since the article was so a propos I didn’t forget what I had read. It was about three women who have put this idea in motion, and they were grateful for

  • not to being alone anymore
  • knowing if they fell sick somebody would be there to help
  • sharing meals
  • sharing expenses – which allowed them to live in a nicer place
  • sharing their thought and feelings with another human being

Of course what to watch out for was also mentioned

  • never buy a house together with another person
  • there has to be just one owner – it leaves the door open for everyone to come and go if things don’t work out
  • have house rules re cleaning, cooking time, meals, etc.
  • take your time to make a commitment
  • look at many options before you do
  • and above all
  • make sure you like the person

Shortly after I had read this article there was a television show about three men living together, about 65 to 75 (my guess) and when they were asked how it felt sharing a house and their life, they said laughingly while pushing each other like school boys, “We haven’t had so much fun in years.” And they truly looked happy and alive.

Of course these are the pioneers. But every major change and movement started with a few who eventually convinced the rest of the world – and here we are speaking about the fast growing group of older people looking for solutions to their changing world.

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Most of the Golden Girls have left us, but we are lucky to still have Betty White. What a role model! Over 90 her enthusiasm for life is contagious. She looks nice, is well dressed, and always has a positive attitude. Is that why she is still round? Maybe? Whatever the answer staying positive is like sunshine making your days brighter and your life happier.

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Thank you Golden Girls for the years of laughter and sunshine  you gave us and for showing us a way of life that could just make the difference in our life now!                                  

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And never forget – A Smile Changes Everything

Brigitte

 

IS BEING MULTILINGUAL THE ANSWER?

This is the result of a study done in Luxembourg. A country where, through proximity of other countries, people speak at least 2 if not 3 languages – German, French, Luxembourgish.

The study was done by Magali Perquin of the Department of Health and it concluded that  compared with other countries the percentage of older people with dementia is lower in Luxembourg, 3.8 % against 6.4% in Europe, 7.1% in Latin America and 8% in Canada.  They believe there is a strong possibility that it is the result of people speaking several languages.

It has long been said that challenging the brain with mental exercises like Crossword Puzzles will help to keep individual brain cells alive. But maybe doing crossword puzzles is not your thing? Therefore, could learning French be an option?

No, it’s not too late. Quite the contrary. It might be the answer to the question many older or retired people ask – how can I find a new purpose or an activity to occupy my time? And if it is not French you want to learn but you wouldn’t mind speaking another language, think of your vacation or travel plans – going to Italy next? Wouldn’t it be nice to order your dinner in Italian?

An added advantage to taking classes – no, not  on-line- will be that you meet other like minded people – and you never know who you might meet and who is ready to go to Italy too!

couple in luxembourg

And never forget – A Smile Changes Everything

Brigitte

 

 

BUCKET LIST – DO YOU HAVE ONE?

Before ending the book signing at The Bell Pub in England I did a little survey by asking who of the ladies had a Bucket List. Two hands went up. When I asked why others did not have one the answer was always something like this, “I never thought about it. I know there are things I still want to do before I die, but never made a plan.”

Well a bucket list is a plan.  Life coaches and therapists often suggest to write down what is in our heart to show us what we really want.

I handed out paper and pens and after 15 minutes collected the answers. Here are some of them:

  • A nice young man – ( this came from a pretty, vivacious blond)
  • Botox facial filler
  • Go up and down the High Line in New York
  • To walk the Inca Trail
  • To walk the full distance of the Great Wall of China
  • Learn to surf – well
  • To build and own a donkey sanctuary
  • Travel to Venice on the Orient Express
  • To visit all the wonders of the world
  • To write a children’s book
  • To run the London Marathon
  • Go to Iceland
  • Travel to Avignon and stay for a long time and paint
  • Take a train across Europe and stop at the places I really want to see
  • See more of South Africa
  • Take a river cruise down the Danube
  • Go to Koblenz in Germany to see a painting my grandmother did, which now hangs in a museum there.(I asked her if she had ever seen it and she said never)

Some of these dreams are a little more difficult to fulfill than others, but not unreachable if you allow yourself to make it a priority.

By the way the lady who had never seen her grandmother’s painting is on her way to Koblenz. She said, “I am glad I came today, this is really a wake-up call.”

Tell us what is on your bucket list!

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The following photos are an encouragement for the lady who wants go to Avignon in France and paint.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And never forget – A Smile Changes Everything

Brigitte

 

 

FEAR – DON’T LET IT SPOIL THE MOMENT

This week I attended a meeting of the TheRadicalAgeMovement held at the Ethical Culture Society of NY.

There were close to 100 men and women, anywhere from 60 to 80+++. and one of the topics was “What do you fear the most about getting old?”

The discussion went on for the next three hours, and here are some of the major concerns,

  • that I outlive my money
  • that I will be incapacitated
  • that I will be alone
  • that nobody will take care of me
  • that I am not part of the world any longer
  • that I can’t travel anymore
  • that my friends have all died
  • that I can’t take care of myself

These fears, all of them, or some of them, I think cross every older person’s mind at one time or another. But we must not allow it to take over our life. One woman said,

“I can hardly sleep when I think of my finances?”

“May I ask you if you are having financial difficulties now? I asked.

“No, my accountant says I will not outlive my money. But I can’t stop worrying because one never knows what might happen.”

No, one doesn’t. But let’s stop and think! Isn’t this is true for any situation in life, and at any age? – you never know what might happen?  And haven’t we all heard that worrying changes nothing? Realizing this we should not let an unknown future spoil our today!

I know from my experience that whatever happens in life, life goes on and solutions are found. So maybe now it’s time to smell the flowers (sorry for the cliché) instead of worrying about how they will look when they are wilted.IMG_4003 IMG_2007 IMG_3368

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And never forget – A Smile Changes Everything

Brigitte

 

 

 

TRAVELING – KEEP IT LIGHT

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It’s the time of the year when suitcases are coming out of the closet and we agonize of what to pack for our upcoming trip.

To make that decision the first thing we have to decide is that under no circumstances do we want to become a slave of our luggage, especially now when we are a little older. Our luggage should never be more than what we can easily move, without needing help. This translates into one medium size suitcase with wheels, and a medium size carry-on.

It’s really important that the  carry-on bag is not too big because if it is and it is packed, often with things that didn’t fit into the suitcase anymore, it becomes very heavy. And walking along the corridors from security to the gate a heavy bag, even if slung over the shoulder can be a drag, adding unnecessary stress. A carry-on bag should only hold things you can’t do without if your suitcase arrives after you – medicine, cosmetics, jewelry, personal papers or anything of sentimental value which would break your heart if you suitcase never arrived.

Now let’s look how you can reduce the weight and make your trip more enjoyable:

  •  wear the same garments a few times – after all  you don’t see the same people during your travels, and even if you did, they don’t care
  • use the laundry services available in most hotels
  • choose easy-care fabrics for your travel wardrobe so  you can wash them in your  bathroom sink at night
  • make sure an item is multi-purpose – if you can only wear it once, don’t take it
  • if you doubt you’ll wear it – don’t take it
  • stick to basics which will go from morning to-night
  • build your wardrobe around one basic color
  • use scarves and custom jewelry to change your look
  • and NEVER take new shoes on a trip  — only the tried-and-true

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When it comes to traveling I am quite envious of the back-pack generation. You know the young people with just a canvas bag on their back? who upon arrival don’t have to wait until half an hour later the conveyor belt finally starts churning, but instead are on their way the minute they leave the airplane.

 Of course at my age I need more than a few t-shirts, underwear, and toiletries (I think that’s all that’s  in those back-packs) but making travel gear as light and functional as possible will make for better traveling at any age.

And never forget – A Smile Changes Everything!

Brigitte

P.S. Before I learned to travel light I was lucky to have a friend help me with my bags – but  that’s the past!

 

 

 

BRA STRAPS ARE USEFUL BUT NOT PRETTY

Since for the last few days the sun is shining brightly it has, to my chagrin, brought out the bra straps again.

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  • Problem: They are not pretty and never add anything to make a woman look well dressed. Maybe she doesn’t look in the mirror? – or doesn’t realize how unattractive they are?
  • Solution: – 1  if you want to wear a camisole and are not as lucky as some young girls who don’t need a bra – buy one with a bra build in. They come in many fabrics, colors and are sold everywhere

– 2  if you wear a sleeveless dress which doesn’t hide the bra straps  buy a T-Back Convertible made by most underwear manufacturers today.

Below an example of it. Made my Wacoal style 851205 (no I don’t get paid for this) but wearing one I can say it to works well under revealing styles of clothing. By the way they agree about exposed bras straps not being a plus. Their sales pitch is:

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SHOW OFF YOUR FIGURE NOT YOUR BRA STRAPS

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And never forget – A Smile Changes Everything!

Brigitte

 

CHOICES – PICTURE OF THE WEEK

IF YOU HAD THE CHOICE WHAT WOULD YOU PICK FOR YOUR DESSERT?

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THE PINK BRA OR THE BAGS FILLED WITH LINDT CHOCOLATE????

And never forget – A Smile changes everything.

Brigitte

 

DEAR ABBY

I started writing early in life and everything I have written were always Self Help or How To books. So when I came to the United States many years ago I fell in love with a column which appeared in over 1000 newspapers at the time called DEAR ABBY. She  gave advice and solved reader’s problems.

I never missed her column and reading it I always wished that one day I could be a DEAR ABBY. When recently I published my latest book  a review from a reader made my day. She said and I quote:

Getting Over Growing Older: How to Change Your Life by Staying Positive by Brigitte Nioche is full of advice and helpful hints. I was looking forward to reading this book. I will say that the book is easy to read, laced with bits of humor throughout . Perhaps it was because from the reviews I was expecting the book to be more of a mental positive encouragement on growing older gracefully more of a Katie Byron style. Instead I felt  it was more like a physical makeover through a monologue from a Dear Abby perspective.

Dear Abby – really? So maybe there still is time to make my dream come true? Can I start with you? Don’t you have any questions? Don’t you need advice? Aren’t you in doubt about your relationship? Your Job? Or maybe you don’t know how to handle the annoying neighbor who just moved in.? Just ask me anything you want! Leave your question right here and my answer will be on the way. Looking forward to hearing from you!

And never forget – A Smile Changes Everything
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Dear Abby/Brigitte