Not off to the cruise quite yet, but I’m just about to start packing that capsule wardrobe!  So, continuing with the theme of ageing, and I know I’ve written about this before, but, in my view ageing is hard work.  Not that I’m saying you don’t work hard when you’re younger, of course, you do, you’ve your work and career, your family and everything else that goes with that, it’s just the maintenance to keep going is harder as you age.

And it’s a constant, this maintenance.  But it’s not that it’s always the same old, same old – I’m finding you have to adjust and become aware of your body.  Yes, I believe in that.   Listen to your body and ask yourself what is it telling you?  And this is what it’s telling me – at the moment!

1.Exercise.  I simply have to do the exercises.  Why, because although I may look OK for my age, boy, you should see me in the morning when I am stiff and achy and have that slight slant to the right.  So, I have to do my daily stretching exercises, and not because ‘I’m good’ but because I’m in pain!  Btw, I’ve given up the senior’s gym because I got a shoulder injury as a direct result of exercising too enthusiastically (the irony) so according to my osteopath these daily exercises are a must.

Do you exercise your heart enough, though?  And don’t do anything rash as a result of reading this.  Consult your medical practitioner, first, please!   But at least twice a week, instead of going to the gym, I run up 100 steps (actually don’t exaggerate, I walk up these steps) but by the summer I’ll be running up them.  Or if not steps, I trot up the little streets in hilly Lewes called Twittens.  And also, on cruise forums (there are such things) there are always complaints about the lifts – we never, ever, use the lifts on cruise ships.

Must tell you – I got an early birthday pressie from Mr Frugalfashionshopper.  No, not flowers or jewellery, but a fitbit (and if you knew Mr F a technical thing is just what he would buy, bless him).  So this fitbit, which you put on your wrist and sync to your iPhone, amongst other things, measures your daily steps (which should amount to 10,000).  It’s kind of an incentive to exercise and is such fun.

2. Be well groomed. What, my body is telling me to be well-groomed? No, my magnifying glass is telling me that, a 10x one!  Urrrgh – the horror when I look in to it!  But even without it, with the naked eye, I can see the hairs growing on my chin.  I can see white hair growing through my hair colour.  I can see my finger nails crumbling to the quick, and the skin on my face blotching up with tiny red veins, and looking tired and washed out after our grey, dull winter.  So, it’s get those hairs removed – check.  Get that colour done – check.

Btw, never say never.  My colourist and I have been discussing this for ages, but I have gone one shade lighter, so the white hair growing in at the front doesn’t show as much.  Readers, I’m nearly white-haired, albeit a platinum blonde at the front with warmer streaks at the back – he’s such a great colourist.

And make-up.  I’m a fan as you know, of *LookFabulousForever products.  But what with this past winter and the effect it had on my skin, plus the lighter hair the base wasn’t working.  So what did I do? I bought another product from another company, which didn’t do it, at all.  So I went back to LFF and changed the base to a slighter different tone, and that, plus a LFF bronzer, has made such a difference.  Rather than the pasty face I’ve had these past few months, I’ve got more of a Scandi look now, and it has really boosted my confidence.

So, the message is, always look closely at what goes on, in and around your face.  And always adapt and be open to change including changing your makeup.

3. Keep that brain active and happy. Which brings me nicely to this constant adaptation to life, the universe and everything else. I’m going to talk more about this in another post, but are you up for a challenge?  Do you embrace new experiences?  Easier said than done, but it’s all about the synapses.

Have you been watching Angel Rippon lately?  (For those of you who don’t know her, she’s a British ex-TV-newsreader).  Recently she’s hosted two TV shows on ageing and Alzheimer’s.  And seriously, it’s not rocket science as learning a new language, or any new skill set, plus dancing, is the way to keep fit and healthy.  Apparently, learning a language is the best preventative against dementia (and no I haven’t checked that research), but that has to be about the synapses you’re creating as you learn.  Anyway, I haven’t found a local dance class yet, but give me a technical challenge and I’ll say how is this done, not ‘I can’t be doing with this’.  For example, I take the pics on this blog (apart from the side-on hat ones) then I send the pics on to Mr F to tidy up, who then sends them back to me and I put them in amongst the writing.  Actually, that’s going to stop.  I’m going to be doing the whole thing from start to finish in future.

There are many challenges we can set ourselves.  For me, I think it is important to keep up with trends in the arts and fashion.  But no worries if that’s not your thing.  The point is to always have a project on the go, and then another one just there over the horizon on the back burner bubbling away that you’re going to do shortly.  My back burner projects are converting a garden shed to a garden office, some garden re-structuring, and books I have in mind to write, which I will do at some point, for sure.

4. Go for the check-ups. I get my skin checked once a year because of my pale Scottish skin, and the little non-invasive cancers that keep popping up. Then only just recently I decided to have my blood sugar tested as I was losing weight without really trying.  Actually, all is fine and the loss of weight is partly down to stress (I go off my food when stressed, which I am, and would you credit it, it’s the holiday!!!!) plus it’s the fitbit and all the walking I’m doing.   At our surgery they told me how healthy I was, but nevertheless would I like to have a more thorough check-up, which I was entitled to because of my age?   Yes, I said, and gave silent thanks to our wonderful National Health Service.  If you live in the UK, and elsewhere, of course, take every opportunity to check your health as you age, I say.

I do hope all this doesn’t sound too sanctimonious.  We all cope with ageing differently and that’s great.  You might like to not think about it, or say age is just another number, which it is.  But me, I like to think about ageing and write about it.  And it’s not that I see ageing as a problem, it’s just another challenge that life throws at us all.  How do you cope with it?  Do let me know.

And finally, someone commented that I seem to wear black a lot.  And, yes, it might appear so from the blog, but actually I love the colour green and wear it a lot. Remember this dress?


It was bought last spring and cost all of £3 and it had a recent outing at a friend’s 70th.

That’s all for now, as I’m starting to pack this morning!

With love

Penny, the frugalfashionshopper

 P.S. As per usual I’m sharing with Catherine Summers and her #iwillwearwhatilike session


* Just want to say I don’t get paid by LFF for my positive comments, because I genuinely love the products for their quality, and also the videos, which are outstanding.  But if you click through to LFF via the logo, on the blog side-bar, and then buy stuff I do get a small percentage of sales 🙂


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18 thoughts on “Reflections on Ageing Part 2 – Maintenance

  • 24th May 2016 at 8:58 am

    Brilliant blog, thank you.
    It’s all about getting it right for you…..weight, height face shape etc……and loving every minute of it!?

    • 25th May 2016 at 7:09 am

      Hi there Jan and thank you so much for your comment x

  • 24th May 2016 at 8:59 am

    Oops nearly forgot, enjoy the cruise.

    • 25th May 2016 at 7:11 am

      I will definitely, although tbh, I’ll be glad when I’m actually on board – 4 days to go now!

  • 24th May 2016 at 9:17 am

    Bon voyage Penny ! ? Hope you’re going to take pics of your clothes aboard ship for your blog . Will miss your posts , fun and helpful too .

    • 25th May 2016 at 7:13 am

      I will take plenty of pics and notes so I can describe things, but probably won’t be able to post until I’m back because of the lack of wifi on board ship (unless you pay their huge charges, which I won’t be!).

      Thanks so much for saying you’ll miss the posts – it’s great to get the feedback!

  • 24th May 2016 at 10:06 am

    I do remember that dress, it’s your yoga dress! (Because everything’s the right way up if you’re upside down) 🙂

    • 25th May 2016 at 7:11 am

      Yes, can’t wait to go charity shopping with you again!!!

  • 24th May 2016 at 2:02 pm

    I love your tips on the maintenance. I don’t excercise and I know it’s bad but I’m just not in that place right now. When I lived in NYC, I was in the best shape of my life because I walked EVERYWHERE. Now I’m just lazy and it isn’t an excuse.

    As a hypochondriac, I always make sure to get my checkups! But I have to say, that green dress looks incredible on you! Wow! green is your color. I love it!!!

    • 25th May 2016 at 7:18 am

      Yes, green, I love that colour. Re: the exercise thing – it’s very hit and miss with me and I’m now not doing any classes, just what I can by myself which is a lot harder, so I do a bit of stretching and a lot of walking. Because we can do that (do the walking) in the UK, as certainly where I live we can get public transport and walk all over our small towns and even the big cities are good for walkers. What I don’t do is walk a lot in the countryside, tbh, I find that boring – takes all sorts xxxxxx

      P.S. Enjoy your trip 🙂

  • 24th May 2016 at 6:25 pm

    You are right, Penny, that we must all tread our own path regarding ageing but I do largely share your philosophy which makes your blog extra special for me.
    Like Catherine, I wasn’t in exercise mode until recently when I went back to Pilates after a gap of some years. I find it makes such a difference so am being much more disciplined about doing a regular session.
    Enjoy the cruise. I am looking forward to the photos!
    Thanks for a great blog.

    • 25th May 2016 at 7:22 am

      I’d really like to get back to going to a class. I did yoga gold for quite a while, but it folded I’m sorry to say. There is a Tai Chi class I might get to, and will check that out once I get back from the cruise. We do tread our own path – I completely agree with that. We can’t all exercise – and there are many reasons why, but it’s right for me and right for you. Thank you for your comment x

  • 24th May 2016 at 10:03 pm

    I am so with you on this maintenance thing as we age. It’s hard work sometimes but beneficial if we want to stay active. Enjoy your cruise and look forward to the ‘what I wore pics’!

    • 25th May 2016 at 7:25 am

      Yes, I will take lots of pics! And yes, there’s the maintenance plus it’s about being actively engaged with the life that is going on all around us. I absolutely believe in that – thank you for your comment!

  • 25th May 2016 at 7:18 am

    You are very elegant…..the green dress looks lovely. My life is so different from yours, mine is about walking, cycling, yoga, and my clothes fit the lifestyle, casual, active, natural. I’ve never been on a cruise and not likely to. Not that I wouldn’t want to! I wear a little makeup and have bought LFF so will buy through your blog in future. Wishing you a lovely holiday and looking forward to hearing all about it on your next piece xx

    • 25th May 2016 at 7:33 am

      Janet, hi and thank you! I think the elegance is just about my shape which I thank my genes for more than anything else. And the clothes I buy are elegant up to a point but they’re also second-hand which is what gives me such a thrill! And we all walk our different paths, which is great. Mind you, ten years ago I would have said – a cruise? Never! The thing to do is choose your cruise and cruise line very carefully. A short cruise to Norway is a good way to start. We went slightly off season and it was a small ship and a small cruise line, as well, so that was a good start. This is the first time I’ve been on a bigger ship and an American cruise line, and I’m a little bit apprehensive about that, yet, at the same time looking forward to meeting a lot of Americans. Will be like being on a foreign holiday twice, in the same experience, if you see what I mean!

  • 22nd June 2016 at 10:47 am

    Oh I LOVE this dress!

  • 12th July 2016 at 1:28 pm

    Practical advice delivered in a warm, friendly manner. I feel as though you are sitting across from me in my living room.
    Charming blog!

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