New Year’s Resolutions

Starting a fresh new year always makes me want to look at my life, closet, and house to determine what is working well and what needs to go. Eliminating what no longer works is very liberating.

On New Year’s Eve, Mr. Mickey took me out to dinner at our favorite local restaurant, Gourmet & Company. The place was fully decorated for the festive events of the evening. Each table had fun party hats for each person. We didn’t hesitate to don them and proceed to have a fun night while laughing and talking to many of our friends who were also having dinner.

Being silly and laughing a lot is part of my daily exercise and beauty routine. I never take myself too seriously.

Trends from head to toe would make me look ridiculous at any age but certainly more so now that I am sixty. I will continue to observe what the current styles are, and I may add a few inexpensive “of the moment” items this year just for fun, but the bulk of my style dollars will go toward the best basics I can afford. Before I buy something, I think, would I wear this every day this week? Of course, I will not do that, but I should love it that much before buying anything new. It should go with most of the other items in my wardrobe. This helps me stop impulse buying. I hate having things in my closet that I wear only once, if ever.

Good examples of classics that serve me well are the pants I wore for the evening. I had them on the night I met Mr. Mickey at a neighborhood Christmas party eleven years ago. They are heavyweight tall Travelers pants from Chico’s. (The fabric they use now is very different.) I am so glad I have hung on to them all these years. They are too big for me now, but I can still wear them with some tops and jackets. I love how the hem falls over my short boots, which are also a couple of years old. That sweater with spangles and feathers was a hand me down from my dear friend, Mitzi.

My wardrobe goals for the new year include wearing classics with the occasional tiara or party hat.

My food goals are; Eat less but better foods. I am not very active in the winter, so I should reduce the calories and include more fresh, in-season fruits, especially citrus. Below is my weekend breakfast. That is a piece of toasted Rudis Ancient Grain Spelt bread, which is the only bread I ever buy. I topped it with Stonewall Kitchen Jelly, Hot Pepper, the only jelly I ever buy. On all the other days of the week, I eat this for breakfast.

Below is Mr. Mickey’s dinner. Mine was the same but without salmon. I always enjoy in-season root vegetables, unprocessed grains such as farro, and grilled Brussels sprouts very much. We did share a dessert, but I only have a couple of bites. I always tell myself the other bites taste the same, so one or two are plenty.

I have an occasional glass of champagne or wine, but I always drink a lot of water along with it.

Sharing my life with you and getting to know some of you through your comments and emails has given me a great deal of pleasure. I value our friendships very much. I hope that sharing what I learn and using myself as an example helps you determine what works well for your shape.

Happy New Year!

  1. The first thing I do every morning is to grab my tablet and check for your posts. This has been my routine for more than a year, after I stumbled on your blog. I have always loved fashion and dressing every day, but aging into my fifties has proven to be a sartorial challenge. Even though our shapes are very different, your posts have totally changed my clothing choices. Your life story, and clear-eyed sharing of it, has been inspirational. I admire your courage, hard work and determination as much as your eye for style! Living well truly is the best revenge. I wish you many happy adventures in 2017. Know that someone in NY will be following your trips, outfits and tips on living a full and tasteful life.

  2. I agree with Miss Debbie…you are awesome! As I approach seventy, I realize I need to pay close attention to what I eat. You are definitely a good inspiration regarding eating properly and still being satisfied. I would imagine you are able to keep your sugar levels just that, level. That is a real struggle for me right now and the pharmaceutical hamster wheel is not an option. Wishing you and Mr Mickey a fabulous 2017! I noticed one of your readers called him Mr Studmuffin. Gave me a chuckle…

  3. So glad to have found your blog, Susan! You look great and are an inspiration to me. I’m turning 60 in June and feel as if I should start my own blog about things I’ve learned and want to share. I’m so tired of the fashion trends saying women “of a certain age” can wear anything. No one can. The last thing I want to do is look as if I’m trying to look “younger.” I like being 59 but I’m not giving in to frump.

  4. So happy to see you back. I’ve missed checking out your outfits. I have purchased so many items you have worn.

  5. Happy New Year Susan! I turned 60 on Christmas Day and find we have a lot in common concerning our love of fashion and healthy eating. Thank you for all you do!

  6. Happy New Year, Susan, to you and Mr. Mickey!

    I have enjoyed your blog so much this past year and have learned so much about dressing myself better!
    Many of my friends and acquaintances have noticed the difference and I get many compliments on my appearance now.

    It’s so much easier too, now, to get dressed and to feel appropriately dressed for the occasion, using your idea of the black or neutral base and adding jackets, vests and/or scarves.

    Like you and probably many more ladies, my closet will be edited down in the coming year with the goal of having only those items in it that I will wear many times and in many different combinations and I have you to thank for opening my eyes to all the possibilities !

    Best wishes for continued success! I’ll be following!
    Chris W.

  7. Your New Year’s Eve outfit is one of your best looks, boot cut pants with your boots make your legs look very long and your look taller, good look. Black is very sophisticated look for you, Happy, healthy new year to you and Mr. Mickey, have fun!

  8. Happy New Year Susan!

    My resolutions are the same as every other year: to stay healthy and keep active especially since I will be 63 this year. When I was younger, I always started the new year with a long run, now it’s an indoor workout, and a 5 km walk later in the day as the sidewalks are a bit icy still.

    Here’s to a happy, healthy and prosperous 2017!

  9. Your look is drop dead beautiful. While I absolutely love the sweater I have to say the smile on your face (and Mr. Mickey’s) is what makes the evening look so much fun. Happy New Year to both of you.

  10. First of all, Happy New Year! You looked truly happy in those photos with Mr. Mickey (Mr. Mickey is one lucky guy). Like others have said, your posts are part of my daily routine. A lot of the internet sites are blocked at my work and yours is one of them (no idea why); anyway, I always have to sneak my cell phone out so that I can read your blog (our little secret). Thanks for sharing your life with us…so much fun to read and lots of wonderful ideas.

  11. Love the tips you share. I just turned 60 in September and already many changes. You incite is and I’m sure will continue to be a great help and inspiration . Happy New Year 2017 to you , Susan !

  12. Love those pants! You look stunning as always. I have made a few New Year’s resolutions also. Simple one’s I was in a better habit of doing a while back and have now drifted away from them. Going back to healthier eating and getting more physical exercise. I know I will feel better. Did a Google search for that bread because I have never heard of it or seen it in my local grocery store. Google did turn up a coop that carries it about 45 minutes away from me. I will be heading over there soon. Keep your posts and advice coming!

  13. Thanks for sharing your goals. My main goal is to get myself into the kitchen and actually prepare/cook my own dinners. I mostly eat in a healthy way but I really wore out on cooking after my sons were raised and gone and I became single…..not worth the clean up for just one person. It’s becoming too expensive to buy healthy, already prepared food on a daily basis. I’m starting out small….one day a week and then go from there.

    I have a funny story (well it’s funny now) about the original Chico’s Traveler’s Pants. I have worn that collection since the day it was introduced and was on my second pair of pants, having worn the first pair out because I wore them almost every day to work with different tops. So, one day in 2006, while at work in my black Traveler’s pants , I rushed into the mail room to get some items posted before our daily pick up. The mail room was also the coffee room. I slipped or water or coffee and landed on one knee. The knee was fractured and I went to the hospital in an ambulance. Surgery was performed later that day….funny part was that, while my right patella cracked in half and some of it was shattered, the Chico’s pants looked as if nothing had happened!!! Yikes! I did wear them again after my long recuperation, because I also had a couple of jackets that matched but finally, about a year later, I just had to let them go…too many unpleasant memories. I replaced them in 2007 with a pretty chocolate brown pair, which are still in regular rotation. In fact I wore them to church today with the matching tank and jacket, accessorized by a scarf a la Susan!!! Now I have very little closet space and the Traveler’s pieces can be folded or rolled up in a drawer and look perfect when pulled out.

    Through the years I’ve purchased too many items I thought I needed or were advised that I needed, which were rarely worn. Long live Chico’s Traveler’s Collection and long live your blog! XXOO

  14. Hi Susan.
    Your blog helps me in so many ways. It inspires and guides me.
    This year I’m hoping all your lovely photos will truly inspire me to give up my sugar addiction. I’ve always fought it, but lately it’s been at its worst.
    So, this year I’m aiming to kick it into touch altogether. I can’t exercise because of a recent, permanent disability. BUT I can and must control what goes into my mouth. I’ve already started by having my own, very healthy version of your Power Porridge! 🙂
    Happy New Year!

  15. The picture of you and Mr. Mickey is great. You are beautiful, and he is handsome. You are a very special person to me, besides being my primary jewelry supply place. Because of your blogs, I am going to try harder to eat right and loose a few pounds. I don’t need to loose much, about 10 lbs, but you have given me the incentive to start. New Year, New You!!! Right.
    Happy New Year, Susan.
    Sincerely, Barb F.

  16. Happy New Year. I look forward to reading your thoughts all year. I love your style and find myself disciplining myself more with your techniques. Thank you

  17. Happy New Year and thanks so much for thinking of your fans as you celebrated the birth of 2017. Your tips have been so helpful during 2016 that I just can’t wait for what you share with us during this brand new year.

  18. I just recently discovered you and your blog on Facebook. And I am so happyI did! I love the way you dress and admire everything I have learned about you.
    By the way, I am 81, but feel I can still wear most clothes you do. However, I am only 4′ 11″ and weigh about 99 pounds. Because I am so short I look like I weigh much more I think …. maybe there is another reason. My body has changed over the years, thicker waist, etc.
    I need all the help I can get! Thank you for inspiring me to be better.


    Hilda Vest

  19. Happy New Year Susan. You have a sincerity and understanding that has helped and guided so many. Appreciate the positive works you are doing and wish you all good things.

  20. Keep on inspiring me with your eating and exercising. I need it. Happy New Year. I don’t often comment but I certainly do read.

  21. Your wisdom is showing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    TKS for taking us along on your beautiful life/ride….so very blessed and happy for you!!!! oh, yes, and happy Mr. Mickey found such a gem!!!!!

  22. Your outfit is perfect for a festive evening! You always look healthy and happy…thank you for sharing your life! I wish you and Mr. Mickey a joyful 2017!

  23. I am new to your blog and have been inspired to eat well. I have a question about the Power Porridge. Are the lentils dried? Do you soak them, then cook to add to the mixture? I am fascinated and motivated by your fashion style and healthy eating . You have done a lot of the work for us.

    I enjoyed seeing you on WCYB. Great segment! you came across as the perfect Southern lady that you are, very real and inspirational.

    1. Thank you, Phyllis. I never soak lentils, but I do cook them longer so they and the grains are the first things to go in the pot. The nuts and some of the other items can go in at the last minute just to get warmed.

  24. Happy New Year for 2017, may it be filled with joy, hope and peace. Making beautiful memories with love and exciting adventures. I so love your blog it is one of my favourites, hugs and love Janine from Whyalla, South Australia.

  25. Susan I have read your blog for several years. I like your new haircut and enjoy your advice on fashion.

  26. Happy New Year Susan. I love your blog and look for it every day. I have learnt so much about my own style and health through reading your blog where you encourage me to look for the best in myself and for myself. You also,whether you have meant to or not, have helped me be kinder to myself and work with my positive attributes. Have a wonderful year and and best wishes to both you and Mr Mickey for every success, health and happiness in 2017.

  27. Have enjoyed sharing your journey with you. You are a classy lady who doesn’t mind giving ! Keep up the good work.

  28. I am new to your blog, have read yours resolutions and this one liked the best – Eat less but better foods. This will be resolution of mine also. Happy and INSPIRED NEW YEAR :-).

  29. I love your blog Susan! Over the course of the last couple of years, since I found your blog, I find myself spending more time on my outfits for the weeks. On Sundays, I pick five outfits that I shall be wearing that week and match my jewelry, shoes and purses with the day’s respective outfits. I have found that I now wake feeling empowered and confident as my outfit will be a nice one and not just something thrown together as I run out the door.
    Although I am 50, I have learned so much from you, in terms of style, grace and overall good health!
    I am a fan!

  30. M. Mickey and you are really smart !
    Smart for clothes (what a perfet top for you, Susan !), and smart for well-being : your both smiles are wonderful !
    I also read your new year resolutions with interest : very clever !
    Happy New Year to you both !
    An congratulations for your daily work for this blog, so qualitative.
    Hélène, from France

  31. Happy New Year Susan! I loved your new years resolutions post! I too believe new years is a great time to reevaluate one’s priorities. This year I plan on creating a capsule wardrobe based on only the pieces I love to wear. I read a previous post when you stated you no longer were going to accept or buy anything that didn’t fit into your current style and realised I had so many articles of clothes that I didn’t wear and didn’t even particularly suit me, or reflect my true style. Thank you for all your sensible advice! I so look forward to reading your blog every morning, I feel like we have been friends for a long time! Best Wishes to you!

  32. Happy 2017, Susan. How blessed I feel to be part of the community of women who have been inspired by your blog. Instead of giving up as I head toward 70, I am enjoying a metamorphosis and loving life. It is a joy to read your advice, see your pictures and interact with the many women who tune in daily. I hope you remain inspired and blog for a very long time.

    My hope for 2017 is to bring peace into my life, to forgive myself for mistakes of the past and develop a positive outlook on going forward. On the practical side I vow to eschew diets and plan to eat less, but better, and move more. I worked on my wardrobe in 2016 and now have an enjoyable, workable closet thanks to you.

    Also, I thoroughly love the pictures you post of the area in which you live and visit. It inspired me last April to postpone a trip to England and do a ten day trip through the South. It was wonderful and we will be returning to visit some of the cities we loved again this year. So, Happy New Year to you and Mr. Mickey. May all be well, blessed and peaceful.

  33. HAPPY NEW YEAR, Susan, from Suzanne As always. I enjoy all your posts…I have several pants from Chico’s from over the years…think I have same ones you have on!! Also, have a very similar sweater…with the fur, but not the glitz…have had for years and always pull out this time of the year. It’s “scary” (NOT!!! …) to see some of your postings…we both have some of the same “trains of thought”.. One question, though…what do you use for filling in your eyebrows? We are about the same coloring. I found a “grey kakhi” color I use, but probably should go lighter, as I notice you have…if you could share that sometime, I would really appreciate it….probably have in some of your posts…but missed it…Thanks, Suzanne…

  34. I’ve so enjoyed following your blog(s) over the years. Cheers to you and Mr. Mickey for a wonderful 2017!!

  35. I’ve been on holiday Susan so this is a bit late but I did want to say
    Happy New Year – I look forward to following you in 2017

    1. Mr. Mickey is my adventure partner and an integral part of my life and thus my blogging experience. We have been dating for more than eleven years. He is my photographer and my inspiration for living a full and elegant life. He usually plans our outings and wants to take pictures of everything we do to share with you. He is very proud of this project and enjoys sharing every date with you here on the blog.

  36. I noticed that you look slimmer now then in your 50’s,so this is how you stay in great shape after losing weight. Food used to be boredom habit,then clothes shopping, but not smart shopping. I’ve always read so I turn to that or my trusty tablet that changes words for me while I’m not looking. That’s how I came across you and instantly was hooked. I do believe that the number on the tag is not important classic styles spands across the board. So I thank you. Hey mister Mickey looks like neurologist.

  37. You and Mr. Mickey look like such a cuddley gorgeous couple. Your breakfast looks healthy, I think I will make this my New Year’s resolution starting now. Why wait till January when nutritionious can begin now! Again, I love you’re outfit. Simple, chic and yet attractive all at the same time.

  38. I am enjoying your comments on style and eating. I love to dress similar and sometimes feel bad that others don’t put the effort into how they look. Thank you for your posting.

  39. I found myself with some free time and since I really enjoy your emails, I decided to start reading your blog from 2017 forward. And it is so interesting to see how your style, weight, hair, etc. has changed over the years. Wish I had documented my own changes like that. Thank you for sharing with us. Your eating habits and healthy living are truly an inspiration to me. Would you be willing to share any recipes on your blog?

    1. I rarely cook for anyone but myself, so there isn’t much need for recipes. I eat mostly vegetables, leafy greens, nuts, seeds, and occasionally fruit. If you also visited my first blog here, you likely saw all the recipes I have shared.

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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.