thinking about: reinvention

working from home

my new office

Yesterday I turned in my keys and my employee badge and said goodbye to my co-workers. This is the other big life change I’ve been hinting at; I’ve left my full-time job. About three months ago we were told that the company where I’ve worked for the last 23 years had decided to implement some cost-cutting and downsizing measures, and would be offering buyout packages to a broad swath of senior (as in tenure, not age) employees. I consider myself very, very lucky…they could have just done layoffs instead as so many companies have in the last few years.

I’ve been working full-time almost constantly since I was 21 years old, and every position was a Monday-through-Friday-8-to-5 desk job (though as part of management, I’ve often been expected to deal with issues on weekends and evenings). This company was a good one to work for, and I liked the work itself and the people, but have been feeling a bit burned out and ready to move on to something else. I’m looking forward to having my schedule be my own, and to finally be able to spend my days on what I love most and what gets me up out of bed in the morning: writing this blog.

There’s so much more I’ve been wanting to do and talk about, and would like to begin covering more topics. Now that I’m not chained to a desk, 😉 I intend to get out and explore and cover a bit more of the local culture and goings-on. We have some travel planned for over the next few months, and I’m excited about being able to share more of those journeys. I’m determined to improve my photography skills. I want to get back into a healthier routine (to try to counteract all of these decades of desk-sitting!) including cooking more and improving my fitness.

It’s an exciting time, but I’ve also been experiencing some anxiety…between this and jeune homme moving to the group home, that’s a lot of major changes happening within a very short period. (BTW, our visit with jeune homme over the weekend went very well. He seems to be very comfortable there, was happy to see us but after the initial few minutes, didn’t expect us to take him back home. He was engaged with a video when we left, so didn’t seem at all disturbed when we said goodbye.) Still, I’m not looking back. The Universe seems to have aligned in this direction, and who am I to argue with The Universe? 🙂

Reinvention is a word I’ve heard and read often in the last few months, and it feels particularly relevant now. It seems to be a time of life for many of us where perhaps kids are grown, grandkids have entered the picture, career changes (voluntary or not) or retirement are imminent, and rather than slowing down we’re looking ahead and asking “what’s next?” It’s an exciting (and a little bit scary) time, but the good news is that we have some experience under our belts, we’re lived through some ups and downs, and often have more confidence and inner resources to marshal now than when we were younger. We’ve come to realize what a precious gift Time is, and are determined not to squander it.

Looking ahead, my goal is to work up to posting more frequently and regularly. I’d love to know what topics you’d like to see more of, and whether you’d be interested in any additional formats (videos or Blabs). I’m very excited about this next phase, and about continuing to build and improve une femme d’un certain âge!

(A note for those reading via email subscription: I apologize if you are receiving posts formatted without paragraph breaks. I’m still troubleshooting this issue with the email service and hope to have resolution soon.)

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105 Comments

  1. Julie Murphy
    May 24, 2016 / 3:21 am

    The very best of luck Susan ! I’m sure there’s lots of new things in store for you. I’ll look forward to hearing more from you on your blog, and as a 57yr old who’s kids have flown the nest, but an elderly father living around the corner from us, I can identify wholeheartedly with those of us in ‘the sandwich generation) ! Julie ( Sydney Australia )

  2. May 24, 2016 / 3:22 am

    Good luck with your reinvention! I had a very hard time leaving my job. It was for a different reason, though still my choice and not a layoff (which probably would have been worse). Still, it took me years to get over it.

  3. Susan D.
    May 24, 2016 / 3:52 am

    I’m very excited for you and look forward to your future posts here. I love it that you mostly post about fashion, travel, packing, It would be fun if you posted about your effort to improve your fitness, your diet, etc.

  4. karen k…
    May 24, 2016 / 3:55 am

    i feel like a “you go girl” is in order here. i’m in awe of your decision….walking away from anything after 23 years is life changing, but walking into the unknown, and undefined, wow, that takes courage and tenacity. i, for one, am grateful that you have invited us to follow along on your journey.

  5. May 24, 2016 / 4:02 am

    I for one say go get your horse back.

    • Martina
      May 24, 2016 / 5:51 pm

      I agree! My sister’s twins will be off to college next year, and she very wisely got back to her first love…of the equine variety. Her horse (and every other animal in the barn that she’s taken under her wing) makes her very happy.

  6. Dee
    May 24, 2016 / 4:21 am

    Congratulations on such a big change. What a wonderful opportunity to reinvent yourself.
    I really enjoy your travel posts which you could expand to local points of interest, restaurants, etc.
    Since you asked, I don’t care for videos, so I skip “reading” blog entries that include them.
    I like the changes you made to the blog except for the way posts appear. I apologize for not knowing the technical term, but only the current full post appears. The previous days’ post you have to click to open rather than simply continuing to read by scrolling down. If for some reason I don’t get read for a few days, I then have to click, click, click, to read. I find this annoying so I tend to skip reading.

    • Susan D.
      May 24, 2016 / 4:39 am

      I agree with Dee about videos. I don’t watch videos posted on blogs either. I also miss being able to scroll down to watch posts I missed.

      • Jan Windmiller
        May 24, 2016 / 6:03 am

        I had trouble finding old posts, too, until I discovered the Archive’s drop-down menu at the bottom of the column of “other things” on the right.

    • May 24, 2016 / 7:39 am

      I prefer having to click on older entries. There is a lovely Amsterdam blog called Amsterdamming, and it is often very slow to load due to the many (splendid) photographs in older posts.

    • May 24, 2016 / 4:58 pm

      I also agree about videos on blogs. I never watch them.

  7. May 24, 2016 / 4:25 am

    I started the same journey 2 weeks ago after 35 years in education. Hurray for change!

  8. Pink Azalea
    May 24, 2016 / 4:52 am

    How wonderful for you. It will be neat to be along for the ride as you reinvent yourself and your life. My husband retired in December and has not looked back, despite loving his profession. I am a regular reader and like others, don’t usually watch videos. Wishing you the best.

  9. Katie
    May 24, 2016 / 5:00 am

    I was initially attracted to your blog because of your travel/packing notes and the fact that our fashion/style preferences are very similar. It would be fun to meet you if you ever found yourself in Seattle. Whatever you do, wherever you go, your post work adventures will be interesting to follow. Welcome to retirement bliss!

  10. rukshanaafia
    May 24, 2016 / 5:07 am

    I repeat some above comments :- good luck on this new stage , it will be interesting to read about your progress & I , too , tend to skip videos !

  11. May 24, 2016 / 5:08 am

    Best of luck in your new chapter of life It would be awesome if you could write a bit about ageism

  12. Barbra Waterman
    May 24, 2016 / 5:13 am

    All the very best for this new chapter in your life. I so enjoy reading your blog and thoughts about various things. My suggestion, just keep on keeping on.

  13. Lesley Goldberg
    May 24, 2016 / 5:21 am

    I retired last August from a career I enjoyed but I decided that work had taken up enough of my time and energy. I found your blog while trying to figure out what women my age were wearing when they didn’t need a corporate wardrobe. I’ve been doing the same things that you look forward to—traveling, trying to make up for years of poor eating and not enough physical movement. I am very happy and I wish you the same.

  14. Leigh
    May 24, 2016 / 5:27 am

    Very exciting. Happy for you. I”m also glad your son has adjusted to his new living arrangements. I’m sure that was a difficult decision for you. I just love your blog the way it is. It’s so lovely, I can’t really say anything but keep on keeping on. I have almost gotten burned out with so many blogs out there, but yours is one I still love and read every day. I love the travel outfits and advice as that always causes me a tremendous amount of anxiety. Enjoy your days of freedom!

  15. susanburpee
    May 24, 2016 / 5:42 am

    Congratulations Sue, from another retired Sue. It’s wonderful to be able to control your own agenda and make your own schedule. After so many years working full time give yourself time to settle in before you commit to too many new activities. The joy is you can do during the day those things you love and which before you had to squeeze into what was left of your busy week. Looking forward to reading your ongoing adventures!

  16. Anne
    May 24, 2016 / 5:44 am

    It is an exciting time for you. I’m also at the stage of reinventing myself. Looking forward to your future blog posts.

  17. May 24, 2016 / 5:45 am

    Congratulations and good luck in your retirement! It is wonderful that your son has found a home where he is comfortable. Retirement is like getting a fresh slate to write a new chapter of life. I’m looking forward to your blog future. I especially enjoy travel writing as travel is a large part of my life. As I am approaching the fifth anniversary of my retirement, I find that a basic lifestyle with a very simple wardrobe suits me best. Enjoy!

  18. Susan
    May 24, 2016 / 5:55 am

    I’m a long time reader but have never commented before. Congratulations on the big changes in your life! I too am facing job changes, possible retirement, maybe a move to a new city for my husband’s career. The whole idea of this next reinvention has me filled with a revitalized energy. Who knew this part of life would be so exciting?

    Your blog is a favorite. A year or so ago I drastically curated the lists of blogs I subscribed to or visited because I lost interest in them. Sadly too many spent way too much time copying each other and declaring this or that as “on trend” and everything else as “dated”. I love fashion and I admire your style as well as your writing on the topic. I look forward to more discussion about how others of a certain age are handling the challenges of life changes and discovering all the rewards of this next phase. And I agree with the others no videos!

  19. Jan
    May 24, 2016 / 6:02 am

    Congratulations Susan! I wish you well-you will love the feeling of freedom! I am in my 3rd year of retirement & enjoying all the new directions I’ve taken. I still keep structure to my days but the things I accomplish are of my choosing- big difference! Looking forward to your travel posts- have postponed our fall trip until spring so I will enjoy yours in the interim!
    Ps So glad you returned to original format- didn’t like the other!!

  20. anne de Paris
    May 24, 2016 / 6:07 am

    You are resilient and inspiring. Nothing can be a better combination for a happy future. We love your blog.

  21. anne de Paris
    May 24, 2016 / 6:08 am

    By the way as it happens I had written just this morning to VIBRANT nation saying they should hire you!!!

    • Beryl Meiron
      May 24, 2016 / 7:45 pm

      What a brilliant suggestion! Hear, hear.

  22. Ellen
    May 24, 2016 / 6:09 am

    I retired from my professional job at 54, for much the same reasons as you have. I had a lot of severence pay, and decided to take six months “off”. Some decompression was needed, and after a few months, I realized that I did not want to return to that sort of employmnet in any capacity. I took a part time job in retail, and did that for nearly 12 years. I didn’t make enough money to make any difference in our lives, but it supported my frivolities, and I enjoyed doing something completely different. When that stopped being fun, I quit, and have been fully retired no for almost 5 years. My husband, a physician, retired at 68; the transition was much harder for him, but he is quite happy in his retirement life now.

    This is my best advice: when you were 21, you were probably in no way equipped with the knowledge and experience to envision the career that you had for all these years. Retirement is much the same. It seems really important to me to leave oneself open to possibility; there is so much opportunity out there that you have probably never known or thought about, because you were busy with your job and your son. Because I retired in a gradual fashion, I had time for this; but my husband was totally at sea. Today, he has a busy schedule that involves volunteering as a medical educator which maintains his professional identity ( just enough), more travel, more time for the grandchildren, improving his photography, learning to kayak, enough time to go out on weeknights (something we were never able to do before)…the list goes on. For me, the important thing was to remain open to new friendship opportunities. Many of my friends were “work friends”, and those tend to fall away, or become less satisfying. I have built friensdships now around my interest in textile art, gardening, and my neighborhood (because I forgot to mention here that we moved to a more age appropriate home. Not far from our old neighborhood, but now in a house that we can live in for a long time, with no stairs, no hillside garden to care for, etc).

    But as for your questions: I never look at videos, and I don’t even know wat a blab is. But I look forward to your evolving blog, wherever it might take us.

  23. Jan
    May 24, 2016 / 6:10 am

    How exciting for you AND for all of us! We’ll look forward to hearing about your new adventures. If you’re looking for a workout that counteracts all the years of sitting at a desk, leaning over/forward, I would highly recommend finding someone who teaches Foundation training. This has made a big difference in my core strength and posture, which is a concern for me as I age. You can read more about it at http://www.foundationtraining.com, and search for a trainer in your area.

  24. Maggie Fieger
    May 24, 2016 / 6:14 am

    Congratulations to you. I will retire next year at 65 and can’t wait! Good luck to you!

  25. debbie J Calianno
    May 24, 2016 / 6:22 am

    Congratulations and best wishes on your journey ahead. I enjoy following your blog and you are one of the most stylish woman I follow. I look forward to seeing future posts about your life and passions.

  26. May 24, 2016 / 6:23 am

    How exciting, Sue! I suspect that despite some of the anxieties change can bring, you will thrive in your new freedom, and we will benefit from the enhanced creativity that a freer schedule will allow you here. Or, at least, the increased time to develop the creativity you’ve obviously always had, to indulge your most thoughtful writing, that which is so much harder to do on limited time and which has always underpinned the style and the travel advice posts. I’m really looking forward to seeing what you do now — the only advice I might offer, after my own first year of retirement, is not to load yourself up too quickly with commitments, even commitments to yourself. . . You’ve worked hard for so many years while balancing the demanding care for your son; don’t be too quick to replace those obligations with others. . .

  27. Suz
    May 24, 2016 / 6:31 am

    All the best to you on this new journey. And that is great news about jeune homme. I am sure that was a huge relief.
    I like your blog just the way it is so more of it would be perfect for me!

  28. Donna Nance
    May 24, 2016 / 6:37 am

    Very exciting news! Congratulations and best wishes on your next step in life. So glad your son is well-adjusted in his group home.

  29. Sharon
    May 24, 2016 / 6:41 am

    So happy for you! The thoughtful comment above that we started work more or less at 20 with no idea of who we were or what we wanted to do in life really resonated with me. Time seems to fly by as I get older and I’m afraid there won’t be enough of it to figure my second half of life out by the time I am able to retire. So I’m very encouraged and inspired when I read of others reaching this juncture. Congrats – and so glad to hear your son is doing well.

  30. Murphy
    May 24, 2016 / 6:49 am

    Congratulations! And I’m very happy for you that your son is adjusting so well to the group home.I really love your blog and always look forward to reading it – I’m so glad you’re not retiring from blogging!

  31. Nancy K
    May 24, 2016 / 6:57 am

    Good luck and congratulations!

  32. sybes1
    May 24, 2016 / 7:00 am

    Congratulations Susan!! I’m so happy for you! I’ve been retired for 3 years and feeling very lucky that I have the opportunity to be doing what I want to do after so many years of working. You have gone through major changes in the last few months–at least my son went away in ‘blocks’ of time–back and forth to college, etc. I imagine it’s a huge relief for you to have a good ‘home’ and caretakers for you son. I notice that many of us immediately started to focus on our health–with computers so much in our lives now we spend a great deal of time sitting!
    I’m delighted that you’ll continue to blog–I love reading about your travels and your thoughts on how to travel well and how to dress comfortably and beautifully. I love your posts about beauty products too. Oh heck I love everything you post!! Thank you for what you do. Happy Days!! Sally

  33. May 24, 2016 / 7:12 am

    Congratulations Sue – so happy for you, both about the reinvention of your work life, and about the easy adjustment of your son to a new living arrangement. But change, even good change is stressful, so take care of yourself. I’ll be curious to see how your wardrobe changes now that you’re not going into an office.

  34. Chris
    May 24, 2016 / 7:13 am

    As a recent retiree, I echo all comments above about this exciting new chapter. I do want to add how richer my marriage has become without two demanding careers. We have time for fun, just hanging out and for each other. How lucky we are!

  35. Shawn Brown
    May 24, 2016 / 7:27 am

    I found with parenting and career ended, I lost my sense of structure. Along with that, I spent a significant amount of time asking myself “If I am not a mother or a nurse, what am I?” I became completely unmoored. With time, I created a new life and sense of self. Now, along with many other things, I volunteer at a wildlife rehabilitation clinic and LOVE it. Many blessings on your new chapter in life!

  36. May 24, 2016 / 7:43 am

    I’m thrilled that your son is adapting so well to the group home.

    On a completely different subject, I stumbled upon a wealth of “Normandy holidays” posts in the Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/travel/normandy – naturally, it is just across the channel for readers in the UK.

  37. Joyce
    May 24, 2016 / 7:59 am

    MAZOL TOV ! L’CHAIM . ..*)

  38. Tara
    May 24, 2016 / 8:16 am

    Congratulations!! You’ve given me something to think about, reinvention, I hadn’t looked at it that way before. I keep putting off retiring, I have no idea what I’m going to do with all that time. Possibilities, oh the possibilities!

  39. Sharon
    May 24, 2016 / 8:35 am

    Congratulations! On May 30 I will have been retired for one year. I still miss working but…..I like being free for the first time in my life. I will be celebrating my one year of freedom with a bottle of Monet.

  40. Sandra
    May 24, 2016 / 9:03 am

    Best wishes for the next phase of your life. My husband retired 18 months ago and I have cut back to P/T. We relocated to the Midwest after living in NY our entire lives. Like you, we have been focusing on our health, travel and each other.

    I enjoy reading your blog with my morning coffee and I agree with previous posters who recommneded keeping videos to a minimum. You write so well, so I’m looking forward to the next chapter.

    Glad,too, to hear that le petit monsieur has adapted well to his new surroundings.

  41. Leslie K
    May 24, 2016 / 9:11 am

    I’m so happy to hear your son has adjusted so well. Congratulations on your retirement! I’m along for the virtual ride and looking forward to seeing where it takes us!

  42. Maryann
    May 24, 2016 / 9:19 am

    Congratulations. I recently accepted a package & am currently travelling. I also chose to move on, many at work were surprised but I know it was the right choice for me.

    Regarding the blog, I would like you to write about how you adjust your wardrobe now you don’t need to dress for work. Also I would like to see features on the wardrobe mistakes you made & what you decide to let go & why.

  43. May 24, 2016 / 9:20 am

    Congratulations! It is indeed an exciting time in your life and to think that you can be your own boss now and choose those things that bring you joy.
    Great news that your son is settling into his new home.
    Travel plans and new blog topics…packing your suitcase and more posts! I love the new view at your home office!

  44. MJ
    May 24, 2016 / 9:23 am

    Best wishes in this new phase of your life. I heard some wise words once in a sermon about how to live in our later years, along the lines of: continue to learn as though you will live forever, and deal with other people as though you will die tomorrow. Since my retirement three years ago, I have had tried to follow that advice and have had the great good fortune to have a little work and lots of leisure, much of which I have used to learn new skills. While I was anxious about stepping back from a demanding and successful career, I am thoroughly enjoying myself. I hope you will as well.

  45. Elizabeth
    May 24, 2016 / 9:26 am

    Congratulations, Susan! I retired almost two years ago; my husband retired about three years before me. 15 months after I retired we moved to a new state to be closer to family. Many changes! When I first retired I spent about two weeks doing very little, just catching up on sleep. Then I pushed myself to catch up on all sorts of home projects. I’m still searching for that “sweet spot” between too many commitments and not enough, but with time things are coming together. You are embarking on a wonderful adventure; good luck!

  46. Angie
    May 24, 2016 / 9:42 am

    Happy reinventing! I would love to see a post on packing for lite travelers. Following some travel misadventures largely related to way overpacking, I’m a new and committed convert to this method of travel. However, how on earth do you fit your mix of 12 (plus underpinnings) in so small a bag? I have a Lipault wheeled carry-on bag as well as their Weekender bag for my personal item. I find that packing lite, though worth the struggle, is no small challenge, and I have yet to pack a full 12 items + underpinnings + footwear that would be desirable for bigger trips. Please share how this is done. I would also love to hear more about your own travel adventures and misadventures.

  47. Liz in Paris
    May 24, 2016 / 9:44 am

    Congratulations Sue! I’ve been following you for ages now and like other posters above, I’ve cut back on the number of fashion/style blogs I follow. Not yours though – yours is the best! Perhaps you could do some freelancing/consulting work in your field for a while in order to wind down more gently; some newly-retired friends of mine found it a shock going from corporate management to 24/7 freedom! You seem very wise and grounded though, so I can’t imagine you’ll have a problem organizing your time and activities. Great news about jeune homme too! Good luck and keep up the good work – we’re all behind you!

  48. May 24, 2016 / 10:01 am

    Wow. Great choice. Welcome to the world of self employed. It is great once you get used to it. Wishing you the best of luck. I am sure that your blog will go from strength to strength.

  49. Sue Blaney
    May 24, 2016 / 10:15 am

    Wonderful news. You will feel reborn. I just turned 60 and left my mgmt position at design agency 5 1/2 years ago. Have finally become the “fashion illustrator” I went to college for…..very happy to read this.

    Enjoy your Summer!

  50. Donna
    May 24, 2016 / 10:51 am

    So much good advice from so many people! Having retired 2 years ago (also with an unexpected buyout), I have SO much less stress, some of which I didn’t realize existed (“I can’t watch that movie, since I have to get to sleep, since I have to beat tomorrow’s expected heavy traffic”. . .) All gone. Hoping you will find your retirement the same, and very happily.

    I continue to struggle, though, with ridding myself of good-quality clothes (or even just clothes in colors I like) that I no longer wear, since they were more for work. (What if I need it someday?) I, too, prefer no videos. Most importantly to me, I have always been a fan that appreciates how short and succinct your posts are. You get to the point, and I can get on to my stress-free life. 😉 Congratulations to you!

    • May 24, 2016 / 6:25 pm

      We should all do culls, whether rich or poor. Perhaps donating them to a charity that helps women job-seekers or women fleeing abusive situations can help. All my unwanted stuff goes to Le Chaînon in Montréal.

  51. May 24, 2016 / 11:26 am

    Best wishes! One of the gifts I gave myself when I retired was to get healthier. I learned new vegetarian and vegan recipes, I started sessions with a personal trainer, I slept in (I was severely sleep deprived). I thought I was getting old. I found out that most of it was because I was In worse shape than I thought I was!
    I started taking online lessons at the iPhone photography school. I was amazed at what my 6s can do! You may enjoy them too.

  52. LauraH
    May 24, 2016 / 11:31 am

    Hope you love ‘retirement’ as much as I do, it’s wonderful. It will be interesting to follow the changes in your life…and wardrobe:-)

  53. Bobbi
    May 24, 2016 / 11:33 am

    Susan congratulations on your retirement!! Having retired last year at age 66 (working since age 12 babysitting or the local church to pay for high school tuition to a private school, then worked full time through undergraduate and graduate school) found that I slept the first month for hours. Thought that I was ill, no just tired:)

    Enjoy your new life adventures!! BTW I was terrified to retire, you’ll get over it.

    No videos please. Enjoy your posts immensely. I live in West Hollywood—would love to meet you.

  54. Lynn
    May 24, 2016 / 11:34 am

    I have been reading your blog for a while but haven’t commented before however I wanted to extend my congratulations. You sure have had a lot of life changes recently! I look forward to hearing where your life takes you in the journey of retirement (18 months now for me).

  55. Cathy D.
    May 24, 2016 / 11:44 am

    Congratulations! I also took a package offered a few years before the usual retirement age. It was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I love your blog and look forward to whatever you may do with it. Unlike some others, I like videos. Nothing, however, can replace good writing.

  56. Melissa
    May 24, 2016 / 12:13 pm

    Oh, Susan, first of all congratulations! Your post hit me so hard this morning, tears in my eyes for this transition you are going through and the rest of us can relate to. So many things to look forward to but it is often hard not to look back. I am going through my own change – health issues that appeared from nowhere, son off to college, family pet passed away…. and it’s funny that through it all we still think about how we feel and how we look. For some reason, looking good makes a difference, and when other things seem to be a struggle, knowing that you can pull yourself together and present a better version of yourself to the world is a big deal (and not as superficial as I make it sound). So I hope you keep up the good work and help women over 50 to find ways to be comfortable, beautiful, and confident in a world that so values youth. We have to walk out of our house every day, not feeling invisible but feeling healthy, powerful, positive, wise, and grateful. I only ask that you can continue to provide us with this forum. Thank you.

  57. Kelly M
    May 24, 2016 / 12:26 pm

    Let me add my congratulations to all of the well-wishes that have already been posted! I’m in my early 50s, and my husband and I dream of retirement and all of the freedom and reduced stress that it will (hopefully) bring. I am so pleased that you will have more time to devote to your blog – you’re such a good writer that I hope you will continue to rely primarily on that method of communication. I hope you will continue to include regular fashion/outfit posts. I’ve been reading for a year or two and your influence has drastically changed my wardrobe and approach to fashion. You helped me make the transition to the 50s without looking frumpy or like I was trying too hard. I also hope you will write about how you adjust to this next phase of your life – the trials and tribulations of balancing new priorities, available time, less structure, etc. I have no doubt you will handle it with aplomb, but there isn’t much being written about it yet. It is also lovely that your son is in a good place so that you can enjoy this new chapter assured of his happiness and good care. Bonne chance!

  58. Anne
    May 24, 2016 / 12:34 pm

    Congratulations! All the best to you in this new chapter.

  59. May 24, 2016 / 12:40 pm

    I’m so happy to hear that the stars aligned for you in this way. Retirement is the “third third,” as my DH always says. Best of luck with everything! I also wanted to mention that your post came in with paragraphs in my email today. I also would say no to videos. Those of us who live in remote areas with ancient DSL internet know how much video slows everything down. Someday, cable will arrive, but it seems to be coming by Pony Express.

  60. Buffalogal
    May 24, 2016 / 1:22 pm

    Congratulations! I hope that you will find the change all that you hope it will be.

  61. Jennifer
    May 24, 2016 / 2:16 pm

    I wish you all the best for this phase of your life. I have cut down my blog reading these days and yours is the only one I still follow. Thank you for all the helpful content – in a negative world you are such a strong positive voice.

  62. Ann
    May 24, 2016 / 2:55 pm

    Congratulations, I am a regular reader who never comments, but this time I feel good wishes are necessary…looking forward to following along with your new ventures.

  63. Robin G
    May 24, 2016 / 4:14 pm

    Congratulations on retirement. it is a jolt to one’s psyche. I am not sure I’ve made the transition because I moved into part time care for my mom, and now that she is gone, research into her missing family. But I still feel the loss of identity.

  64. SusanG
    May 24, 2016 / 4:52 pm

    Oh wow, Susan, what a gift. I relate to the idea of reinvention, I retire next week and I’ve moved to a new town.
    I hope you will share your thoughts and experiences with us about the changes in your wardrobe choices. I’ve sold and bought so many clothes this year in preparation for my new life! It reminds of going away to college.
    Congrats and what a wonderful way to start a vacation.

  65. May 24, 2016 / 5:01 pm

    Congratulations on the move to a new lifestyle. Change means both loss and gain and as you navigate the change in your life, I look forward to reading and following along with you.

  66. May 24, 2016 / 5:06 pm

    Yay!!! Congrats and Good for you! Hope you enjoy yourself. I just left my job at the end of April (by choice as I am 66) but I am so happy to be free after over 45 years of working in the corporate world. Can now say what I want on my blog without fear of reprisal LOL Plus I am leaving the country to become a global citizen. Only good things on the horizon!!! Life is good!

  67. Dulce
    May 24, 2016 / 5:08 pm

    Hi Susan, Congratulations! I have been an avid reader for years but have been quite silent. I am 52 but already feeling the weight of a work environment since i joined it 31 years ago! Anyhow, i enjoy your style, travel and packing post. I will enjoy more of whatever new activities you might want to share, especially where you have been, whats keeping you busy now with this change. It’s a breathe of fresh air every time i read your post!

  68. May 24, 2016 / 5:36 pm

    Congrats! At the age of 48 and being with my former employer for 12 years – I walked away from an extremely stressful but high paying job. It took a little time but I have landed in a position where I can work from home, spend more time with my honey and can say I am the happiest I’ve ever been. I make considerably less but don’t regret it for a moment.

    As they say, when one door closes, another one opens….I hope the opportunities that are ahead for you, bring you much happiness.

  69. May 24, 2016 / 5:48 pm

    Congratulations on this next chapter! I agree with a previous commenter…go get your horse! Also, I love seeing and hearing about what is happening around L.A.

  70. May 24, 2016 / 7:55 pm

    My goodness, so many have commented that I am not going to take time to read them all before adding my 2 cents, so probably am repeating what others have said. I admire your courage in meeting a lot of big change all at once–and, I am a wee jealous. But I plan to get vicarious satisfaction out of your new adventures, and I know they will guide me when I get to step away from the work that has consumed me for so long. . . .Let’s see, topics? I think if you share about all the new things you get to explore in LA, on your travels, just hanging out at home–whatever sparks your creativity will be of interest to your readers.

  71. Gwynne
    May 24, 2016 / 9:19 pm

    I wish you well in the new phase of your life! Thanks for your delightful blog–I enjoy your writing and the glimpses of life in sunny CA.

  72. Wendy
    May 24, 2016 / 11:09 pm

    Very good luck for the next phase of your life Susan! I sold my business at the end of last year and have been spending the first part of this year reinventing myself after working for 40 years I started following your blog last year when I realized I’d have more time to travel. I live in Cape Town South Africa and love sharing your life in CA xx Wendy

  73. Cat
    May 25, 2016 / 1:21 am

    I have been reading your blog for a while but I’ve never commented before, and thought now is the time to comment. I want to wish you the very best of luck for this new phrase of your life.

    In answer to your question, I enjoy your blog, like the photos but rarely watch videos in blog posts.

  74. Susan
    May 25, 2016 / 1:31 am

    Congratulations Susan. You will love retirement. I stopped work 4 years ago (aged 55) and have never looked back. It is most liberating knowing you don’t have to get up by a certain time and are young enough that you can still travel and enjoy life.

  75. anne de Paris
    May 25, 2016 / 2:47 am

    May I offer 10 development ideas for your blog
    – ADD a meetup / like designers did with their Blog tours – I can give a contact to see how they did it
    – Develop it in partnership with a Café chain as loneliness is a big issue for older women. If Nordrtome has a cafe, they would be a good match !
    – Develop fashion workshops with insurance companies who increasingly offer services to seniors
    – Become a consultant for designer companies: last week AAARP and other tweets featured images representing the over 55s/ and you would not beleive the image they chose for the age group: a person walking hunched over with a cane:!!! Then they did an image of a 65 yrs old woman: she looked like 100 and even an old fashioned 100 year old. The problem is these graphics are designed by people who are 20
    – Develop a column for HIGH50/ but why not also ELLE or Marie Claire and show off your edge!
    – Make the name a trade mark
    – Offer Nordstrom a capsule collection for fashion
    – Offer Nordsrtom a capsule collection for footwear
    – Create a line of multi purpose scarve

  76. May 25, 2016 / 4:41 am

    Wonderful, Susan! And so exciting, and yes I understand the anxiety as well. But you are creative and energetic and the world is opening up for you! I will be following you carefully (without a stalking vibe : > )

    xo

    -Patti
    http://notdeadyetstyle.com

  77. plutrell
    May 25, 2016 / 5:21 am

    Welcome to my world, Susan…though I am not retired completely, I am completely reinvented! It is fun and exciting and I know you will love it! Give yourself some time to reflect and renew and then dive into the fun. If I can be of any encouragement or help, please let me know. I just take it one day at a time!

  78. Sandy
    May 25, 2016 / 8:00 am

    I have enjoyed your blog and never commented. Congratulations on your next life adventure. I agree with another viewer on seeing more fashion styles , now that you’re retired.

    Also, I like watching videos on youtube, but don’t like to look at individual videos embedded into a blog post, because they hog a lot of space on cell phones and computers. But don’t rule you tube out.

    Many people watch lifestyle videos on the you tube platform. Unfortunately, there’s hardly any good lifestyle videos from boomers. I do watch Stylelikeu and some advanced style videos on you tube.

    I do believe that over time, since youtube is the number 2 search engine, that google will show videos on TV. And it would be a shame for you to miss out on that opportunity. You can always put a link from your blog to your tube channel.

    Thanks so much for all the time and talent you’ve given to this blog and I look forward to your new plans.

  79. May 25, 2016 / 8:09 am

    I’m just so excited for you. And for us.

  80. tish868
    May 25, 2016 / 8:17 am

    This will mean, I’m hoping, more trips to Paris so we can play together. I am soooo looking forward to July.
    And, as everyone has said, I too am extremely happy for you. It will be fun for all of us to see how you define reinvention. xoxo

  81. May 25, 2016 / 9:08 am

    Susan, I have just read your blog post (as I do regularly, and enjoy so much), and I’ve read all the comments — what impresses me is this amazing, intelligent, supportive community you’ve nurtured through your blog! Look what you’ve created — you’ve clearly voiced, in your wonderful, warm and open way, something that resonates for so many. And you’ve done it while juggling your demanding job, your son, your husband and your travels. Savour this!

    At 61 now, I retired almost a year ago from a long and varied but demanding career in education, and not quite ready to give up the pleasure of professional involvement, I’ve been working part time at the university, travelling (actually writing this while in Paris!) and gardening more – and rediscovering the guy I’ve been married to all these years. It’s been fun, and I’m getting ready for another step away from the schedules as I ease into retirement by increments.

    As for your blog – I love it! (Chose my shoes first when packing for this trip, in fact, based on your sage advice.)

    Personally, I’m wondering about “powering down” from a professional wardrobe into a style that is relaxed, creative, fun, and reflective of who I think I am, and that looks good on my middle-aged self.

    Looking forward to following your transition — which I suggest starts with a year of celebration!

  82. May 25, 2016 / 10:22 am

    Congratulations!! I’m so happy to hear your son is happily settled. I’m sure that was a big worry. I’m excited to follow your adventures, wherever they take you!

  83. Northmoon
    May 25, 2016 / 10:45 am

    Congratulations on your new life! Looking forward to more of the same topics that I’ve enjoyed so far – fashion, travel, and culture.

    I opened this post on the day when I had finally decided to take the big step and give notice that I was retiring at the end of June. I’ve spent months thinking about it, debating when the time would be right, worrying about how much money I will have. At the end it seemed pointless to spend another summer working when I could be gardening or doing some other enjoyable activity yet to be determined.

    Your post was like a confirmation that I was making the right step. Thank you and all the wonderful commenters for sharing your journey into this new phase of life. It’s wonderful to have so much great advice available at my fingertips.

  84. Beryl Meiron
    May 25, 2016 / 11:23 am

    A new, clean page in the next chapter, Sue. I have no doubt you will transition to new and wonderful endeavors that will enrich us all. I’m so glad I’m a devoted reader of your blog–one of the very few read and thoroughly enjoy.–you’ve given me so many wonderful ideas and thoughtful messages. You have so much to give, and I’m happy you have some time to breathe and think what will bring you happiness and gratification. Big, life-changing experiences this year for you. Your son sounds like he adjusted well to his new environment, and you and your dear Monsieur have adjusted, too. I’ve been there with a special needs child, and an “early” retirement at 62, five years ago. It’s been a struggle for me, as others have mentioned, and still do consulting. Now, I’m excited for you and your opportunities, and can’t wait to read your next chapter! All the very best–and know there is a whole community of women cheering for you.

  85. Wendy
    May 25, 2016 / 12:28 pm

    Congrats on being able to devote more time to the things you love to do. While I initially stumbled upon your blog in search of travel wardrobe tips, and stayed for your sense of style, what I’ve come to appreciate is your point of view. You’re a thoughtful, graceful writer in your thought pieces, with a talent for zeroing in on what’s important. You also have a great visual sensibility and economy of style. It’s a way of thinking about style, interest, beauty, and even priorities in general that I admire. Can’t wait to engage with what’s to come.

  86. Susan B
    May 25, 2016 / 3:06 pm

    Thanks so much everyone for your supportive and encouraging comments! And thank you for all of the ideas and feedback too.

  87. Lisa Laree
    May 25, 2016 / 5:12 pm

    Congratulations, Susan!

  88. May 26, 2016 / 3:05 am

    Congratulations on this new chapter of your life! Can’t wait to hear all about the changes. Perhaps we can enjoy some time together while I am in L.A. next month? I would love to have an adventure partner! Please call me or email me if you are free at the end of June and first week of July.

  89. Denise-Mylene
    May 26, 2016 / 8:52 am

    I only recently discovered your blog and love it. – really exciting news for you and your readers that you will be having more time to devote to your blog (-: one thing I would love for you to write about is what you wear when walking the dogs, in particular now that you are walking them twice a day. It is not very practical to change outfits five times a day.

    • Dressing and dating over 50 Hmm Hmm Hmmm
      May 26, 2016 / 9:23 am

      Great idea and so true. Wondering if you could also venture into the delicate area of dressing for oneself and dressing to please the men in our life – in a nice way. When we are younger magazines go on about the difference between dressing for oneself and for fashion versus to please other halves… T

  90. SoSuSam
    May 26, 2016 / 9:53 am

    Cheers to you for embracing this next phase of your journey! As a long-time reader, I’m quite happy to know that your blog figures prominently in your plans for the future. But whatever you do, blog or otherwise, I hope it brings you satisfaction and joy. All the best to you–and many thanks for the joy you bring your readers!

  91. Duchesse
    May 30, 2016 / 10:22 am

    You got a great, and all too rare offer, and good for you! Because you already have so many interests, I am eager to read your new adventures. However, I will not watch videos- maybe others will. Enjoy the release from job-induced stress!

  92. Jane
    June 1, 2016 / 4:05 am

    Congratulations! I hope you will enjoy this new phase of life tremendously! I love reading your wonderful blog, and unlike many who have commented, I also love videos so I hope you will continue to include them. I would love to follow your journey to improved fitness. I think this is an area many of us ‘of a certain age’ struggle with. Maybe another topic could be how to develop a chic wardrobe on a budget, or beauty and skin care on a budget. Enjoy your new freedom and I look forward to your new adventures.

  93. June 1, 2016 / 4:16 am

    I would like to see you style some Chico’s outifts if possible. Thank you for all you do for our community, please know it’s greatly appreciated!!!

  94. Maureen
    June 1, 2016 / 6:27 am

    Just wishing you a world of joy!!! Congrats!!!

  95. Cathy Bonnett
    June 5, 2016 / 5:53 am

    Congratulations on the next phase of your life! I started reading your blog for the fashion information, but have enjoyed the most your personal meditations. Like many here, I am experiencing life changes. I will retire in 2 years, my kids are grown, my mother just passed away, (reducing an enormous amount of stress and grief on my part but I miss her horribly) and I have a little more money than I used to.

    As for ideas, I am more interested in what you have to say and pictures of you or that your took than in links. Videos are not my favorite since I read blogs late at night or early in the morning.

  96. Sara
    June 8, 2016 / 6:40 am

    Congratulations on your career change.

  97. June 13, 2016 / 7:21 am

    Oh Susan, how exciting!!! The Universe is smiling down on you. What a splendid thing that there is this solution for jeunne homme. One that is good for all of you. What a relief to know he enjoys it and is taken well care of.
    The fact your company has paid you money to leave is fantastic. I am feeling rather as you felt and would love this solution. I would do exactly the same as you described (minus the cooking… not a good idea for me haha).
    Enjoy dear, enjoy. I hope I may step in your footsteps soon. Who knows. Only three years to go (or a nice settlement at the next reorganization).
    Greete
    PS I spoke to Sylvia.. She told me I missed this post.

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