Get Checked

“What would your jewelry collection look like, if you had to start all over?” The pieces I wear most often have the appearance of fine jewelry in timeless designs. A few years ago, I gave away all of my bold chunky necklaces and earrings because they felt dated and too much like part of a costume. So, I now avoid anything that includes colorful plastic elements or oversized tassels.

Since most of my clothing is relatively basic, accessories are essential when getting dressed each day. Shoes or a handbag can add color or texture, and jewelry adds a finishing touch that looks intentional and adds elegance. My nail color is Baby, Take a Vow by OPI here.

I wear these pieces countless times each summer. They are neutral but add the details necessary to complete my frequent white jeans and top combos.

My Nordgreen watch is comfortable even in the heat, and the small link bracelet adds a feminine touch. The small bracelet and bamboo-style hoops were gifts from Mr. Mickey long ago. The ring is a souvenir from one of our travels. The pearl bracelet is one of my all-time favorites! I bought it here. (Use the code SAS10 for $10 off any one item at Beauty in Stone Jewelry.)

The small straw clutch is here. The red sandals are from Dillard’s last year. They are comfortable even though they have a high block heel.

My blue eyes are very sensitive to bright light, so I never leave home without sunglasses. These are old from Nordstrom. Similar current ones are here.

You’ve seen that top and white jeans combo many times. I bought both from Talbots last year, but they have similar jeans here and a similar top here.

With a paternal family history of colorectal cancer, I have faithfully received colonoscopies for several years. Unfortunately, I’ve lost too many friends and family members to preventable cancers if the person had gotten regular checkups and paid attention to indicators. Read more about the reasons for getting a colonoscopy here.

We were on our way to enjoy a delightful lunch after my most recent screening when we snapped these photos. Since I turned forty, I have visited my dermatologist and family doctor yearly for lab tests and a complete checkup, including annual mammograms. I also see my optometrist annually and my dentist every six months. Of course, I wasn’t always so diligent, but after skin cancer and numerous precancerous polyps, I’ve made and kept my annual appointments. So please don’t wait until it is too late. Take care of your health!

  1. Susan: You are an inspiration to all of us in demonstrating prudence, both in beauty and health! For any who are NOT at above average risk for colon cancer (no family history, no history of polyps) and who dread/avoid colonoscopy, the Cologuard test offers an easy, effective alternative for screening. I am a former physician and got the prescribed colonoscopy in my mid 50’s (which I recommend doing). Since it was normal and I have no other risk factors, I chose to do the Cologuard test going forward. Very simple at home test with great instructions, easy to mail back, fast results. Colonoscopy is certainly still the “gold standard” but for those avoiding colonoscopy, this is the best and most sensitive/accurate option.

  2. Last month I finally went through my jewelry and had 2 of the gallon zip top bags full of jewelry I didnt want. Why I had all that Ill never know. Just never took the time to go through it. I gave it to Our Lady’s Inn which is a place where young women can go to have their babies. The ladies there repurpose the old jewelry and make new jewelry from the beads etc and sell it for Our Lady’s Inn. I only kept the costume jewelry I really liked and of course my good jewelry. I have so much room in my jewelry box now.

  3. Thank you for sharing this post. I try to accessorize but the costume jewelry I try on in the stores always seems to be too much for me. Your take on accessories will be very helpful going forward.

  4. Hi Susan. I’ve noticed that you haven’t worn your French Kande pieces for quite awhile. Any particular reason?

  5. Thank you Susan, once again for your straight forward message regarding your life style.
    I love that outfit. It looks comfy but stylish.
    You are blessed to have Mr. Mickey.

  6. Appreciate your tips on jewelry! Making me rethink some of those chunky pieces I have been hanging onto but don’t wear! I will go thru them and donate. I too tend towards simple jewelry. Also, thanks for the tips on the importance of colonoscopy tests which I just finished. Good for 10 years.

  7. I’m happy you mentioned colonoscopies specifically, as my 83-year-old mother-in-law was diagnosed with late-stage colon cancer in April. She had never had a colonoscopy. They were able to remove the tumor, but it had metastasized to her liver. She’s home and doing well, but now her future health is uncertain.

  8. Susan, I can’t believe you were able to go from a colonoscopy to a lunch date! When I had mine it was straight home and to bed! Maybe I misunderstood your post but if not you’re a trooper! And I second the recommendation for Cologuard. I do it every year since I had a terrible reaction to the nasty stuff they make you drink prior to your colonoscopy!

  9. Thanks Susan for todays post. I have a lot of costume necklaces that I used to wear to work before going remote. (and am now hybrid working, going into the office one day per week) and I need to pare them down to almost none. I have found I tend to always wear my silver jewellry. When you overshop as I have tended to do in the past, and then your lifestyle changes completely (twice) you end up with far too much of absolutely everything! (Lesson learnt and not going there again). Thanks for your great advice.

  10. I’m so glad you mentioned these necessary checks. Like you I have been diligent because of family history. But even so, a month ago, it was discovered I had an aggressive skin cancer on the edge of my ear. Since then, I have lost 30% of my ear and whilst it’s still painful (the reconstructive surgeon did an excellent job with 20 tiny stitches!!!!), I wore earrings for the first time in a month last Friday.
    Like you, I wear the same favourites – all simple, either brushed gold, silver or pearl and quite discrete. I look forward to my ear being healed enough to be able to wear them regularly. (my ears aren’t pierced…)
    I always love that top and especially with the white jeans. The vermilion sandals are an inspired choice with the colour scheme.

  11. Thank you, thank you Susan for reminding all your readers to get annual physicals and necessary tests. It is so easy to put these things off and then it becomes too late. Fortunately, I have thus far not had any issues for myself or my family.

    A reminder from you probably carries some clout. Thank you again and God bless you for caring about the ladies who follow you. ♥

  12. What a fantastic and beautiful post! Lovely accessories and even lovelier that you care so much about your readers that you encourage us to get our checkups!

  13. Susan i have followed you for several years now. I never skip a post!! I feel you have become a good friend to me. I share several figure issues with you as well as our age. I find it extremely helpful when you describe in detail, the reasons you purchased certain pieces such as the dress you recently showed from Tuckernuck. (for example, minimizing large breasts . fitted waist and making arms look longer) Love being able to click on the links to shop for the things you wear. I am the same age as you and I love your taste. I consider you my friend who helps me bring out the best in myself and makes my shopping so much more pleasant and FUN!! Its so great to have this friendship, where we can talk wardrobe and where to find great things. Thank You for all of the time and effort you put into your on-line presence. You are invaluable to me, Mabel from Goochland County, just West of Richmond, VA.

    1. Mabel, you make me feel as if I accomplished my goals! I want this blog to be a visiting with a friend or older sister moment where women of all ages can benefit from our shared experiences. So, thank you for your lovely comment.

  14. Have you moved?. Hopefully you are settled. Please continue sending your messages. All your blogs are fantastic. Each day is a learning experience. LOVE to Mr. Mickey.

  15. Funny…..I wear nothing like your fine jewelry, just started wearing dangly, fun earrings…my favorite bracelets are chunky, bright and usually an artist piece.
    But I do wear my fine gold watch daily, but it’s oversized. And love my pearls!
    I’m 75, and for whatever reason this looks good on me at this time in my life.

  16. I love the jewelry you showed and plan to pare down my own collection. I did not notice any necklaces ( maybe I missed it). What are your favorites?
    Also thanks for the encouragement on getting your various checkups regularly!

  17. Susan,
    Thank you for being an inspiration to so many older women like me who want to lose weight, improve our health and live our best lives! I’ve learned so much about fashion, styling, diet, etc. Please keep the posts coming!

  18. Thanks, Susan. Ladies, please pay attention to your bodies. I had mammograms ever year. Had one in April, 2019. In July,2019, on a trip to ER for totally unrelated issue, I was diagnosed with cancer. I had metastatic breast cancer that spread from breast to shoulder, thigh, pelvic, liver, bile duct, and the diagnostic mammogram showed nothing. Cancer was very small, and against chest wall. And did not show up. Dr had stuck my finger and it showed I was very anemic, so he sent me to ER. Blood test in Er showed no problem, His machine was calibrated wrong, but CT scan showed cancer. His machine being wrong saved my life. And Ibrance is working. Starting my 3rd year. Not a sob story, But just wanting to save even one life. I was very healthy and would cancer would not have been found, except, for an error in a machine.

  19. Thanks, Susan for all your timely advice on keeping up health care appointments ! It pays real dividends when one is older if one starts earlier in life paying attention to this.

  20. Bravo and thank you to you for promoting health screenings! It’s easy for us to think that we are “too busy“!

    I wish you continued good health and happiness

  21. Totally appreciate all of today’s information! I agree, and also do the same. One additional thought…I have photographed my important pieces of jewelry plus added necessary information about each piece, and included it with all my other valuable personal information. Thx again.

  22. Cologuard has a pretty high false positive rate as I found out last week. I wish i had just had a colonoscopy instead of the Cologuard and then worrying for the nine months it took to actually get a colonoscopy. Completed that last week, no issues. I am not sure why i was so hesitant to get a colonoscopy……it was not a big deal. So get screened when your Dr suggests it! Don’t put it off!

  23. Dear Susan, thank you for your post on cancer screenings, which are so very important. Please do not forget to be aware of the signs of gynecologic cancers. There is no screening test for ovarian cancer! When you have a Pap smear, it’s to check for cervical cancer. The poking and prodding and rectal checks your gynecologist does are to determine if there is an ovarian mass. Best way to detect ovarian cancer is to be aware of symptoms: bloating, pelvic pain, changes in urinary or bowel habits, feeling full quickly. Average age for diagnosis is 62, but all ages should be aware. Unfortunately, because there is no diagnostic test for ovarian cancer, many women are diagnosed at late stage and survival rate is low. I’m a 12 year survivor but went through numerous chemo therapies, recurrences, and surgeries, Take care, and thanks for your posts, really enjoy them. Susan (after 70, thankfully)

  24. Thank you so much for your comments about bowel checks. I work in the Screening Program in England and can only heartily agree with what you say. Bowel cancer signs and symptoms often do not show themselves until the cancer is fairly advanced but it is easy to treat and often completely curable if caught early which is what checks give to us.

    Other checks and screenings are equally valuable – if a check is offered all I can say is please take it

  25. Along with the testing you mentioned, may I suggest that you also have a bone density test. There are various treatment options available if need be. And, although osteoporosis and its precursor osteopenia are most often thought of as problems faced by women, men also suffer from them so the men our lives need testing too.

  26. I agree – screenings are important for health promotion and peace of mind. When you get the ” all clear “. go out and celebrate.

    I wear a chunky sterling bead bracelet or a sterling charm bracelet with a Shinola leather banded watch The bracelet gives it a more feminine look, like you said. My jewelry has gotten simpler as I have gotten older, I mix gold with silver. I have multiple ear piercings so Wear a mix of thin hoops with studs or huggie earrings. I dare you ladies to get an extra pierce or two, it adds a little more sparkle to the ears.
    I love the earrings and bracelets in the photo.

    Thank you again for the suggestions and inspiration.

  27. Wonderful post.
    Some great comments A reminder to all to keep up with our health care routines. Bravo to all who shared their personal stories, and a thank you Susan for initiating the conversation.

  28. Checkups are so important. I had a large mass in my colon in my early 40s. Part of my colon was removed and resectioned. Thankfully I did not have to have a colostomy bag everything is still normal. My daddy wasn’t so blessed. He was never one for going to the dr. After months of being really sick my brother made him go to the dr. A large part of his colon and rectum had to be removed due to cancer in 2 places. He woke up with a bag. But that was about 7 years ago and he is 89 now and still cancer free.

    I’m faithful about gynecology checkups and mammograms every year and colonoscopies when they are due. Even when I couldn’t afford them! My mother died from cancer when she was 47. I was 19. Now I’m still going at 63. Thankful to the good Lord and a bit of sense

  29. Dear Susan,

    it is very good to take care for health and you do the right. But don’t wear sunglasses on your eyes (you can wear it on your hair for a cool Look). The reason is as follows.:

    We all know that when sun is shining our body can produce Vitamin D by ourself. Our eyes give the message to our brain “Sun is shining”. So our brain gives the order to our body to produce Vitamin D. But if you wear sunglasses your eyes stay in darkness and the logic is: the eyes have no reason to give a message to your brain to produce Vitamin D and the result is that your brain has no reason to give the commando to your body to produce Vitamin D. So you can stay whole days in the sunshine with sunglasses on your eyes whitout producing Vitamin D.

    I am a German woman and my English is not perfect. So I hope you could understand my words. By the way, your blog is great and your looks are wonder ful and clean. I like it very well and I follow you about 2 years.

    God bless you.

    Kind regards of good meaning woman


  30. Thank you for reminding us all to make our health a top priority. Early detection is very important.
    I love the red sandals!! Have a great holiday weekend!

  31. Susan. I am commenting on the beautiful turquoise dress you are wearing. You look so lovely in that dress and I noticed a black streak in your hair. It is so upbeat.
    You give me such inspiration to try to dress well even tho I am almost 80.
    This is why I follow you for beautiful advice.

  32. I so look forward to your posts. And yes, I agree with the health checkups. I have a Wellness Doctor that goes beyond the conventional health checkups and I am doing quite well to be 75. They require a current list of all my medications and all my supplements. Something that my primary doctor said wasn’t necessary. Just a caution to your followers: over the counter supplements can have an adverse reaction to prescription medications.
    .I love they way you style your clothing and accessories. You always look sophisticated and put together. I have dropped some weight, that I really needed to do, but have also dropped clothing sizes. I am now back in my regular sizes and thanks to my taste being tailored and simple, I am now pulling out items in my closet that are older and they are looking great.
    Was just thinking of you this morning and wondering how the house search is going. Have a safe and wonderful Fourth of July.

    1. Thank you for sharing that info about supplements. One of my friends took seventeen supplements daily until she started having severe stomach issues and pain. (Not even her daughter knew how many she was taking!) Many of those medications and supplements advertised on TV target older people who may live alone. It may become a problem if your doctor or pharmacist doesn’t know what you are taking. It is wise to be cautious about advertised “snake oil cures.”
      I don’t plan to purchase another house. I am content and happy to share a home with Mr. Mickey for now.

  33. Susan, can you touch on how to wear a shirt with collar with a jean jacket with collar. Tees don’t ok great on me and I am not sure what to do with collars. I tend to lean toward sleeveless shirts such as Talbots perfect shirts. How about a couple of pictures? Thanks

  34. From an oncology nurse I know: You can either take the time to schedule yearly, short, easy & pre-emptive health screenings or ignore your health and face the possibilities of scheduling weekly dialysis or chemo/radiation appointments for the rest of your life and negatively affecting you & those that love you.

    You CAN easily make lifestyle changes that are free and will change your life for the better, rather than the attitude of “I need to…” or “I am planning to…” or “I don’t have time for…” and never actually following through.

    YOU need to take care of you!

    At age 57, I was told by my doctor that my annual bloodwork revealed I was pre-diabetic. She suggested I look into a low-carb diet.

    I went straight home, googled pre-diabetes & low carb diets. Spent that same day tossing ALL the carb-heavy foods we had into the garbage, ordered several Keto cookbooks and added a couple of Keto cooking websites to my home screen.
    No “I should,” “I’m planning” or “I think” thoughts. I simply changed that very same day. There were zero reasons or excuses to wait. It wasn’t difficult.

    Within 4 months, I returned to normal a1c levels (no longer pre-diabetic), dropped 45 pounds, increased my energy & mood and felt the best I’d felt in years.

    I had to buy new clothes (went from size 12 pants to size 4) and, because of finding this blog (thank you, dear Susan!), simplified my fashion style, with timeless classics that compliment rather than cover!

    6 years later, we are continue living low-carb and feeling fabulous and don’t miss ANY foods!

    So, Susan, thank you for sharing your thoughts and images on lifestyle, fashion and all things wonderful about truly living a life, at any age!

  35. I had a clean colonoscopy when I was 50, and with no family history my NP advised I can go with the Colonguard/or FIT tests. I like to think that I leave capacity in the system for those who have higher risks to be seen. I think a low-meat/vegetable based diet is good for the gut, plenty of fiber to keep things moving 🙂

    Even though you’ve eliminated large/colorful jewelry from your wardrobe I’d say you still have fairly chunky jewelry accents. I do think the metal-only approach helps keep the costume element in control. I find that there is an architype older-woman style that is bold/colorful/soto-artsy, and that it’s not hard for that to veer off into costumey sterotype. I don’t want to be an ‘artsy’ sterotype, I want to be me. So, I have few artisian elements, but try to keep my accessories low-key. I’m more likely to carry a textile bag than wear tassled or bulky earrings/necklaces.

    I will admit with my newly grown-out salt and pepper hair it’s been hard to resist decorative hair clips. After so many years of styling my hair to avoid showing any root line it’s fun to be able to pull it up or back.

  36. You have inspired me to go thru my jewelry! I love your style – what type of necklaces did you keep to wear?
    Love following you and enjoy all of your blogs.
    Thank you!

  37. I’m looking at purchasing the pearl bracelet. Thanks for the discount! I have a 6” wrist. Do you have a 7” or an 8” bracelet? The site says a 7” would be snug—-?

  38. Hi. I love your website.
    I am a 76 old, 5 foot person, in a UK size 12.

    I love buying clothes, and spend a day or so co ordinating. I find your capsule wardrobe amazing, and am now trying to emulate the idea.
    I have too many clothes, I like them all, but do not get the wear out most of them. Our social calendar is not huge. Apart from meeting up for coffee or lunch with friends. Holidays of course – clothes for hot countries, clothes for cooler countries. Clothes for a cruise with city stopovers. Maybe the odd beach under a sun umbrella. The list goes on doesn’t it.

    And it takes me time to work out what goes with what, and what shoes, and what handbag (purse).

    In the UK we do not have a lot of choice when it comes to petites. I spend a fortune having trousers, sleeves, hems turned up.

    So thank you for showing how to put clothes together, for the “older” person.

  39. Hello, I’m Susan from San Antonio and it’s the first time I’ve seen your site. Your posts are delightful and I enjoy seeing what you do to have over 60 style. I turned 60 a few months ago and consider myself a classic style woman so I appreciate your tasteful classic style!

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I share tips and inspiration for using what you already have in contemporary ways. Defining words include effortless, classic, refined, discreet, and elegant. My style is chic, minimal, and timeless with a bit of edge.