It’s About Time

February 3rd, 2013

“Time is the coin of your life.  It is the only coin you have, and only you can determine how it will be spent.  Be careful lest you let other people spend it for you.”  …Carl Sandburg

I’ve been thinking a lot about time recently, as my 70th birthday approaches in March.  “Decade” birthdays have always brought new revelations and insights, related to the passages of life.  My thoughts about aging are much different now than those that I entertained 10, 20, 30 years ago.

I decided to break the coins down in numbers to give me a feel for the currency of 70.  If I were given 100,000 dollars at birth and the average life expectancy of a white woman in the United States, according to the Centers For Disease Control, is 80.6 years, I determined that I’m down to my last 14K. More or less.

However, it’s about the fears, not the years.  Since finding Ari Seth Cohen’s Advanced Style HERE, I have discovered women in their 80′s, 90′s, and 100′s who are living and embracing life to the fullest, having fun, vibrantly doing and wearing what they love.  Forget about the bell curve and averages.  I have role models who are leading the way for those of us who are following in their footsteps, decreasing fear and increasing possibilities that I would not have otherwise considered.  I believe this cultural movement of visibility and aging provides hope and the motivation to “dream big,” which affects my health and the quality of my life.

Time to spread my wings, or at least wear a cape, and consciously choose how I want to spend my precious time, with the awareness of how quickly life can turn on a dime (pun intended).  For The SC, thinking or talking with friends about mortality is not grim or negative. I don’t spend my coins obsessing about it, but if I want to do something, if not now, when?

This is the time for radiant and rich adventures that feel even more delicious than before.  Each hat that I choose delights me to the bone.  Every time I see my daughter I am amazed by her grace and beauty and how she reminds me of her father in so many ways.  He lives on in her and in me.  Though my grief muscle has received a workout, I love the life that I’m creating out of the ashes of loss.

Photos by Diana

In the spirit of choice and meaning, I’m wearing the electric blue “armlets” and cowl, upcycled from thrifted cashmere sweaters and gifted to moi by the talented and elegant Jean of Dross Into Gold HERE. These flashes of blue have been seen frequently around the city this week!

Accompanying the well loved cowl and “armlets,” The SC is wearing: vintage blue wool felt hat by Boutique Kates Canada – Manhattan Vintage Show, black bolero jacket with velvet trim and vintage leopard print earrings – estate sales, black ruched jeans – Gabriella, leopard print booties – consignment store, black turtleneck and black cape – retail.

Linking up to the festive weekly gathering over at Patti’s Visible Monday HERE at Not Dead Yet Style.

54 Responses to “It’s About Time”

  1. Pam@over50feeling40

    Just as the ladies of Advanced Style are encouragement for you, Judith, you are encouragement for me. I love it that at 70 you can still look forward and see a lot of living to be done! You are an electric blue inspiration!

  2. Veshoevius

    I love the accents of electric blue and leopard against the black! I love the cape too!
    What food for thought this post is, to think of time as currency and how you choose to spend it. Your reflective posts on the precious nature of life as a thing to be celebrated and enjoyed at all ages are always a source of inspiration to me xx

  3. Paula

    First of all,i t is truly difficult to believe that you will be 70! Love all that you have to seem so much younger!

    Love that color blue and love that hat! And I need a pair of leopard shoes…..

  4. That's Not My Age

    That quote is brilliant, I’m going to write it down & repeat when necessary. Another inspirational post: fabulous outfit and wise words. Thank you Judith.

  5. Jean

    Blue, black, and leopard=DIVINE! You look so elegant and funky/cool at the same time. I love the way you styled the cowl and armlets!! I should’ve known you’d have an amazing hat in the exact same shade of blue, too. Gorgeous.

    I’ve thought about your musings on life, and the finite amount of time that we have. I’m not particularly good with money or math, so I’ve come up with the idea that we have an infinite amount to spend before we die. The assignment then becomes to spend as lavishly as possible, every moment. Not money literally, but as an outpouring of love, creativity, pursuit of our joy, etc. Don’t hold back or hoard any of it. This works for me.

    Keep soaring. You’re beautiful!!!!!

  6. Jeannie@gracefully50

    It’s very difficult to believe you’ll be 70 in March! You are truly an inspiration!
    Love you in black & blue! Beautiful!

  7. Desiree

    You know SC, before I even read that you’ll be celebrating your 70th soon I was having a right ol’ gander at you and thinking “damn she is such a HOT, HOT, HOTTIE”!!!! Figure to DIE for, face like a goddess, smile … oh that beautiful smile. Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful thoughts and WEARING A CAPE AND AWESOME HAT!!! xoxoxoxoxo

  8. Tess

    Judith you look amazing and the sentiments here are just beautiful. Thank you for sharing. Looking good! Love those boots!

  9. Val Sparkle

    It seems that all the “models” we have of aging are changing, and that is wonderful! I remember how older women used to wear dull house dresses in boring colors, but we’re not so restricted anymore. Life is more interesting without restrictions!

    That blue is stunning, and is a lovely color for you. Do I see blue nail polish, too? How cool!

  10. PinkCheetahVintage

    You look chic!!! I love Advanced Style, too :)

  11. Carolyn

    Fly girl!

  12. Vix

    You look incredible, Judith! I love that vibrant cobalt blue and those sassy leopard boots and of course, the hat! Thanks for those words of wisdom, too. x

  13. Rose

    As usual Judith, so WONDERFULLY, wonderfully said. Time is the one commodity that you cannot get back. I am always amused by the expression, “saving time,” as really, you cannot save it. If you could, you would be able to go to the Time Bank and withdraw those minutes you saved. Ha! Fat chance!!

    You really are an inspiration, in so many ways. The way you write, the way you dress, the way you have braved the heartbreak of widowhood, the way you look for the best way forward. One never knows how many of those hours are left in your life, no matter what your age. Although a birthday does remind you to “get a move on!” If you’re going to do something, do it. Or at least take a crack at it, as the best time to do it is NOW. There is only now, as the saying goes.

    You’re looking glamorous and vibrant, and like fine wine, getting better as time goes on.

    Much love from England,
    Rosemary from http://www.foreveronthecatwalkoflife.blogspot.com

  14. catherine

    I love your prose and style.

  15. Patti @ NotDeadYet Style

    Wise words, beautifully spoken. “If not now, when?” – that’s one of my favorite mantras in this second half of life. You look exquisite in these deep colors, against the neutrals of winter. Thanks so much for sharing with Visible Monday!

  16. Curtise

    I am so pleased that you can say that you love the life you are creating, Judith. That’s an amazing thing to be able to feel, especially after traumatic and heartbreaking loss.
    And you do look ready to fly forward in that beautifully flowing cape, and the striking blue accessories. And what outfit (and what time of life) isn’t made a little bit more glamorous and fun by leopard print boots?! xxxx

  17. josep-maria

    Beautiful outfit, blue is great in this look.

  18. Tamera

    I totally cannot believe you’ll be 70!!! I adore the bright cobalt pops in your outfit!!

    You are an inspiration to those of us coming up behind you!!

  19. SizzleandZoom

    This is a wonderful outfit from the blue accents to your wonderful
    animal print booties. I plan on wearing that color a lot this spring.
    I’ve put together a few outfits with it to brighten my wardrobe.

  20. SizzleandZoom

    You look lovely from the blue accents to your animal print booties. Great put together. I’ll be wearing a lot of this color in spring. I’ve put together some outfits to brighten my wardrobe.

  21. Debbi@SheAccessorizesWell

    Oh I love the cobalt blue and the leopard accents against the black. You have amazing style! It is hard to believe that you are going to be 70, but I think that says a lot about the perceptions we have had of what being 70 looks like. Things have changed so much in the past 20 years including how we perceive age. Vibrant people like Ari features on Advanced Style show us that we don’t have to be “old” any more. You are one of my style icons, dear SC, and if I look 1/10th as good as you do when I am 70 I will be a happy woman.

  22. Playing with Scarves

    Judith, you are truly amazing! I love the way you embrace life. Your constant joie de vivre is a model to all your blogger friends. You are more energizing than thousands cans of … blue-redbull……… You are the best! Keep spreading your wings to please us for many many more years!
    xoxo,
    Anne Touraine (Playing with Scarves)

  23. Anne-Marie Bruun

    Lovely words. If only I had half the wisdom when I am 70 I would be happy. I have 5 years to practice so maybe :)
    The good Ari done it more fun getting older.
    It is a lovely blue color so brilliant.
    You are a role model

  24. no fear of fashion

    Gosh woman, you have such a gorgeous body, it is amazing.
    This outfit is perfect. I like all components on their own, for their own merits, but the way you have put them together proves you know how to style.
    Absolutely lovely.

  25. no fear of fashion

    Forgot to say that I never think of your age. I just see you.

  26. Emalina

    Wow, you’re one of the most beautiful, stylish and happy woman pushing 70 I’ve ever known! Such a wonderful physique and a wise meditative disposition that we can all aspire to. I love the blue touches to your outfit, and that cape is so marvellous! Stunning.

  27. ariane

    first thing i saw is those fabulous leopard skin booties!
    You are indeed most beautiful 70 year old i ever saw apart from my Mom of course!
    Many years of joy and happiness to you!

    Arianexxx

  28. Trina Grandinetti

    A simply lovely and inspirational post, but then again, it was written by a very inspiriational, talented and beautiful woman. I believe we, as women, are very fortunate to have you as a blogger. As for the outfit, it is stunning! The royal (saphire) sets the tone and gives the perfect statement piece.

  29. anne the SpyGirl

    I saw your flashes of sapphire over at Patti’s.
    And now, reading your pearls of wisdom, I am inspired and energized!
    I am so glad to have cyber met you and hope one day we will meet face to face.

  30. I'm No Lady Misfit

    You are grace and beauty and wisdom and magnificence. I love the beautiful cobalt blue – THE HAT IS STUNNING – and you are an inspiration. Sarah xxx

  31. Mary

    I love the color combination and the pop of leopard! :)

    -Mary @ Style That Moves

  32. Maureen

    I am seven years behind you and it is wonderful to have such an inspiration. I also find Ari’s blog an indication that all is not lost when the years roll by.

    It’s not just clothes and beauty either, it is dealing with what life can throw at us as we age as well.

    Thank youx

  33. SACRAMENTO

    You are glorious ant 70 and waving the blue flag of hope for all of us.
    Much love and admiration always.
    You are pure style, and that has nothing to do with age.
    XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

  34. Sylvia @ 40PlusStyle

    I’m always in awe, both of your writing as your outfits. Today is no exception. Absolutely adore this outfit and especially the blue accents and the hat! Oh and the shoes. The shoes!

  35. Marla

    Wow, you don’t even look close to 70. You are so lovely and hip. I love that beautiful shade of blue against the black. Awesome leopard shoes.

  36. Amber of Butane Anvil

    It tends to take me ages to comment on your marvellous posts because I think and think about them and return again. Not that this process always helps distill a response, sometimes just a small offering. These words: electric, wild, pulsing, and flight. Elegant curving lines tracing big dreams.

  37. Joni

    This is wonderfully expressed and I feel the same way after viewing Ari’s blog. I remember the very first day I stumbled upon it. After browsing the posts for about an hour I remember how it suddenly dawned on me that aging doesn’t have to be boring or downhill. I was actually feeling excited about it because my thinking was totally turned around at that moment. From there I went on to read Jane Fonda’s most recent book and found that her philosophy on aging to be incredibly inspiring as well.

    Now I am volunteering at my local senior center thrift shop one morning a week and thoroughly enjoying working side by side with women in their 80′s and 90′s! As I am turning 53 this year I find that the women ahead of me to be incredibly inspiring.

    You look lovely, fit, and youthful here Judith. Sure do love those boots!

  38. Slimming Style Secrets

    Your blue hat is intensely fabulous and you have such style, grace and poise…I’m hoping that if I keep reading your blog some of the grace will rub off on me!

  39. Sue @ A Colourful Canvas

    I love that…decreasing fears and increasing the possibilities. Each time I read your lovely blog, I feel a wave of possibility, and I thank you deeply for that.

    You look a vision in your black and {cobalt} blue. How serendipitous to have a hat so perfect for your thoughtful gift from Jean.

    Sue xo

  40. Kaffesoester

    What a fantastic outfit! Jean is so talented, and as she says, of course you have a matching hat The blue combined with leopard and black is such a vibrant mix – lovely!

    I clearly remember my first visit to the Advanced Style blog, it was indeed a revelation. Now I often take out the book from the shelf, and look at the incredible photos. It has totally changed the way I look at old age, and at myself as aging (if you can say that at 50!).

    It’s my wish that it gets translated into other languages so that even more women get the opportunity to enjoy this wonderful book!

  41. Willa

    Accounting for how I “spend” my time is often something I think of because I am always trying to pack more in to my days. But I am also thinking more these days about how life can be cut short so I want to live vibrantly and not waste time with things that don’t really matter to me in the long run. So when you say, “thinking or talking with friends about mortality is not grim or negative,” I have to agree. In fact, I just signed up for a trending activity in our city, a “Death Cafe.” A local artist is hosting gatherings where folks gather, engage in a guided conversation about death, and eat cake. I think of it as high tea with a purposeful chat. The events are drawing paratipants of all ages and from all walks of life. I’m not sure what to expect, but I know it will be memorable. — As someone with a large collection of wraps and capes, I adore seeing you in one!

  42. pao

    You always are so striking, visually and verbally. Leaving me full of images and thoughts, uplifted. Feeling blessed, really. I remember when I first stumbled across Advanced Style blog and my whole world changed, literally. From the inside, out. I’m 60 now and I can accept that, even embrace it, and you remind me to enjoy it and what’s coming next. Thank you.

  43. sara

    Lovely outfit! very elegant and chic.. Sara
    lifestyleover40.com

  44. Practical Paralegalism

    Jean is amazing with her beautifully upcycled clothing, and you look so beautiful wearing the bright blue accents with your exquisitely tailored black clothing and exciting animal print shoes.

    I’ve never thought about time in terms of coin, but you can bet I’ll be exploring that concept, having just hit the big 5-0. I love to hear you talk about terms of adventures and hope. This year will be a tough year for our family, but I do hope that everything that might happen to us, including bone marrow transplant for the Teen might lead to a better quality of life for her, and more hope and adventures.

    Much love to you,
    Lynne

  45. RobinD

    Your posts always perk me up. And that’s a little unusual, considering that you have written extensively about grief. But there you have it – your posts are uplifting!

    I love your wings in this outfit, the colorful cloche in the last post and the fantastic structured jacket in the post before.
    You certainly do use your appearance as a canvas for artful expression!
    And that lifts me up, too!!

  46. lucy

    thank you for you lovely comment. I love your style. thanks lucy

  47. ODYSSEY

    I just can’t believe your age but if you insist…! ;)
    You are a real inspiration and a true beauty.

  48. Shelley

    Ever since I discovered your blog, you have been a source of inspiration for me about what is possible for now, and in the years to come. I was apprehensive about turning 50, but after having found you and the other women from Ari’s blog, I have been able to embrace the positive side to ageing, and while not ignoring the negatives, have certainly been able to put them in better perspective. Thank you for sharing your strength, sorrows and joys with all of us.

  49. Sara D.

    I love love love this outfit! I really like everything about it, but particularly the hat. You have the best hat collection ever!

  50. Gabriala Brown

    I love your words Judith. So beautiful to read. And those boots and upcycled action from Jean, love it! And your birthday is coming up? So is mine. I am March 4th. xo

  51. Tamera Beardsley

    Fabulous post my dear! First off…you ensemble is simply amazing! Stylish, chic, elegant and eclectic…all adjectives I would use to describe yourself also.

    Ari’s blog also changed my life ( and congrats agin to you dear Judith for holding not just one, but TWO spots on Ari’s top 10 looks of 2012!), giving me hope and excitement about my own future. I also still remember the first time I read about Iris Arpel…she truly changed my life. I realized in that moment that I wasn’t too old for fashion….that style was not something to be owned only by the young….that true style transcends age.

    As I have gotten older, I too have realized the necessity of being more intentional with my use of time… if not now, when… is my motto now as I realize I have limited time to accomplish what I am looking too.

    Last, but not least, I want to thank you again Judith for all of the inspiration you have given me.

  52. Kari

    You are stunning! as are all the women in these wonderful blogs. just wondering – what is Ari’s blog? xoxo to all ~ Kari

  53. Judith Boyd

    advancedstyle.blogspot.com

  54. Megan Mae

    Those shoes really make the outfit!

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