50 SHADES OF FAYE

My mum Faye is guest posting on the blog today - find out why it's titled "50 Shades of Faye"!

INTRO

My surprise guest poster this week is my Mum, Faye. She is a larger than life version of me - she's more social, more generous, more colourful, and wayyyyy sexier than I could imagine being when I'm in my 70's. She has a wide circle of friends, belongs to several chapters of the Red Hat Society, has travelled the world, and is currently enjoying having a Friend with Benefits who is much younger than her. 

I recommended she keep her post to a PG rating - I didn't think we wanted too much detail in regard to her regular coffee dates with her FWB that we refer to as "tea and crumpet" because it does my head in thinking about it (she shares wayyyy too much!) If you need any more details in regard to her life feel free to ask her in the comments! So let me introduce you to Faye....

FIFTY SHADES OF FAYE

Hi, I'm Leanne's Mum, Faye - she has asked me to write a guest blog post for her and suggested the above title. So here goes....

EARLY MARRIED LIFE

My early years of married life were spent doing the usual housewife things. Caring for my husband and children, cooking, shopping, gardening and an occasional bit of housework. My husband didn’t want me to get a job, not even selling cosmetics, as he wanted me to be dependent on him for all things. That is until he decided to throw in his job and buy a motor vehicle franchise and expected me to help him run it by being the office manager.

LOOKING BACK

In hindsight, my husband had all the say in our married life. He made any and all decisions as was the way of things back 50 years ago. I know he loved me and our three children, but we were never his priority. He never discussed big purchases such as a new car, neither did he consider thinking of letting me have the use of the car once a week to do the shopping. No, it was put the baby in the pram with Leanne on the seat on the front of said pram and pack the groceries around the baby and head up the hill back home.

Sister and little brother 1963
Leanne and her little brother 1963

HINDSIGHT

I now look back and wonder how compliant I was and how different things would be if I was a married woman in this day and age! Wow, I would tell him where to go and how to get there! But that's all now in the past. I did finally stand up for myself and held a job for 12 years as State Manager for a water filtration company, which I loved. I retired when I felt it was time to travel the world before age caught up with me.

AFTER MID LIFE

Mid life has been and gone, but as I am mentally 20 years younger than my actual age, then I really am still in mid life. About 11 years ago, I joined the Red Hat Society. I enjoyed it so much, that down the track I joined a further 4 groups. What's not to like? Lunching at different cafes and restaurants while all of us dressed in purple and wearing red hats. No dinner to cook in the evening, just crackers and cheese and a magnum icecream to top it off. What more could a girl do? 

My mum Faye is guest posting on the blog today - find out why it's titled "50 Shades of Faye"!

Being a member of 5 groups, I met a lot of lovely like minded ladies who, like me, were fed up with cooking meals all their married lives and now enjoyed eating out. In my case several times a week. I figured that while I was out most days it was keeping the house from getting dirty. Less dishes to wash, less food shopping and more time to browse the shops looking for purple clothes or more glamorous hats. One can never have too many hats, can one?! 

The Red Hat Society may not be everyone's cup of tea, but I have yet to find anyone who doesn’t think it is the best fun and friendship club to belong to. Some clubs go to the movies, some to art galleries or exhibitions, but for me, I am just happy to have somewhere to go for a lovely meal that I haven’t had to cook and the pleasure of some friendly chit chat.

NEVER SAY NEVER

For the past 5 years, I have been in a wonderful relationship with a man who is 13 years my junior and I am having the time of my life! He was a friend of my husband's who I met 10 years ago when he used to drop in for coffee and a chat with us in the years before my husband passed away. He is an army officer in the S.A.S., very virile, and I am now enjoying that which I never expected to be enjoying at this time in my life. Leanne says she isn’t the least bit envious of my good fortune! She obviously doesn’t know just what quality and quantity can do for a girl!!

My mum Faye is guest posting on the blog today - find out why it's titled "50 Shades of Faye"!


No, I am not interested in having him move in as that would mean cooking proper meals, sharing the remote, and so many things that I can’t be bothered with. Enjoying each other’s company over lunch and returning home for “dessert” once or twice a week is all I need to keep a great big smile plastered across my face. The children don’t have to worry if their inheritance is going to be shared either, he has his family and I have mine. It’s great and I hope things keep going like this until I get tired of it. Which I think is a long way off.

THAT'S ALL FOR NOW

I hope Leanne doesn’t regret asking me to contribute to her blog. She will probably think twice next time.

(Note from Leanne: I think Mum will definitely be back for an encore performance - she did an amazing job!)

My mum Faye is guest posting on the blog today - find out why it's titled "50 Shades of Faye"!

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50 comments

  1. Good for you Faye! I thoroughly enjoyed reading your guest post. I am so happy for you to finally be living life according to what you want. I totally agree about not moving FWB in - just have fun. :) Wishing you a wonderful day from Ontario, Canada.

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    1. Hi Catsrgr8, yes I am certainly enjoying my life atm. Although I had 50 plus years of a happy marriage, looking back with modern eyes, wives of the 60’s were definitely chattels.
      Anyhow, the past is the past and I am making up for it nowadays. I do what I like, when I like. My FWB relationship has now lasted 5 years, so I must be doing something right!

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    2. Hi Catz - isn't her life great? I think Mum's managed to tick every box on her bucket list (that she didn't know she had!) She has great friends, travels, a FWB, a family who love her and a cute little dog. It doesn't get much better than that :)

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    3. Faye, you must definitely be doing something right if you FWB has lasted 5 years! Wow, good for you; enjoy, enjoy!!

      Leanne, your Mum is a pip! I love it that she is grabbing life by the horns and having a blast doing it. You are certainly right, it doesn't get much better than that. Thanks for sharing her with us through your blog...what an inspiration on how to do life on your own terms.

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  2. I love your style! Your beautiful smile says it all - good friends, good fun, and good FWB. Smart not to give up your freedom, much better to enjoy your tea and crumpet and not have to worry about doing the dishes. (And yes, Leanne, I finally gave in and signed up with Google, darn it :) .)

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    2. Hi Janis - if it's any consolation I had to sign up with Wordpress to be able to comment on all the WP blogs - it's a pain that there isn't a common commenting platform isn't it? And yes, my Mum is certainly rocking the latter part of Midlife :)

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    3. Hi Janis, thank you for your compliment about my smile. I definitely do have a lot to smile about these days.

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  3. Man, I hope I have it figured out the way you have one day. Love your attitude, love your style.

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    1. Hi Jo, Yes I am a bit out there at times (most times, Leanne would say). I certainly am a much happier person these days, as I can go where I want, see who I want, eat what and where I want. Life is great without any restrictions of the past.

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    2. Mum's definitely rocking her age and stage isn't she Jo? I doubt I'll be half as exciting as she is in 20 years, but it's great to see what the possibilities are :)

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  4. Rock on Faye!Enjoy your life your way -- with 'dessert' whenever you please!

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    1. She is certainly reaping the benefits of her weekly cups of tea Janet - when she says she's going out for lunch I remember not to ask what she had for dessert - or she's likely to tell me!

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  5. The best thing about having dessert at my age Janet, is that it is non fattening!

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  6. Hi Faye and Leanne! Such a fun read, full of honesty, wisdom, the colour purple and red hats. Loved it 😊

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    1. Hi Debbie, I must admit that lunching with a dozen or more red hat ladies is always good fun. It is nice to be with a group of ladies of a similar age and interests. Although saying that, some love craft (I can’t stand it as I have no patience), some still play badminton and tennis (those days are over for me, I now prefer other less energetic pastimes.....such as walking my dog!!) What were you thinking? Shame on you!

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    2. My mum owns more purple and more red hats than anyone I know Deb - she can't resist a bit of bling either - it makes for some great photos at times :)

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  7. Whoa, Faye! Glad to "meet" you! Your love of life comes blazing through in your post. Way to go, and way to be an inspiration to other women! You keep on being you and keep on enjoying dessert with your "boy toy." ;-)

    I love to see women coming into their own after they have given their all as wives, mothers, and daughters. We deserve this time.

    Stay vibrant, and rock on,

    Deb

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    1. You sound like a woman after my own heart, Widow Badass. Yes my life is great and I hope it stays that way and I hope you are enjoying yours as well.

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    2. I think my mum would be a bit jealous that you grabbed the "Widow Badass" title first Deb - she'd probably want it for herself if she took up blogging :)

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  8. You're an inspiration, Faye. If you hadn't written a single word, I would still know who you are from your huge smile and the twinkle in your eye.
    Leanne, what a great mom you have! A wonderful role model for your third act, minus the friend with benefits of course - Ross might have something to say about that!

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    1. Hi Karen, thanks for your kind words. Yes, it is difficult to stop smiling when I think about my life these days. It is nice to be happy doing just what I want to do without having to confer with anyone.

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    2. Hi Karen - I joke with Mum that she can leave the FWB to me in her will - but I don't think Ross would be overly impressed with him turning up looking for "dessert" at our house! I'll just settle for a slightly more staid Midlife and leave the romping to Mum!

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    3. I don’t know if Ross would say I was a great role model for his wife, Leanne. I rather think that he is of the opinion that I am a bad influence on her. Nevertheless I still keep on doing whatever makes me happy. She is a grown woman and can make up her own mind in all things.

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  9. What an 'alive' life you lead, Faye!
    Brings a whole new meaning to 'Joie de Vivre'. :)
    Here'e to more of that Joie!

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    1. She certainly isn't wasting a moment of the time she has left Diane - she inspires me to see that there is still so much living yet to be done!

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  10. wow...what a fantastic lady! An inspiration for sure.

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    1. Hi Michele, I hope I haven’t led any or all of Leanne’s blog followers astray. I am a great believer that life is what you make of it and that life is to be lived to the best and fullest of our abilities. Getting out with a group of brightly dressed ladies rather than sitting at home bored spitless is definitely the way to go.

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    2. She certainly is Michele - I think there are a lot of women in their 70's who are sitting around waiting to die - I love that Mum is doing exactly the opposite and living life to the full :)

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  11. Hi Faye, My mom belongs to a red-hat group and always has a wonderful time, too. Keeping up with 5 of them is pretty amazing! I will definitely be keeping it on my possibilities list for the future...sounds like my kind of group - good food and good conversation. Thanks for letting us get to know you a bit - you're an inspiration for staying young at heart!

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    1. Hi Patricia, I have recently resigned from two of the Red Hat groups as they are too far from home and another mainly went for walks and coffee. Boring!! I walk my dog twice a day, so why would I want to do more of the same? Two clubs are enough at present particularly with the extra lunches each week, it all takes time.

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    2. Patricia, if my Mum can only manage two clubs these days, we'll have to settle for one each I think - all that socializing would wear me out for a month! Still, you're right about good food and good conversation - two of life's best investments :)

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  12. you had me at the title, Faye, the epitomy of bon vivant

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    1. Hi PJ Colando, The title of my post was Leanne’s idea. She shakes her head and rolls her eyes when I discuss my extra curricular activities. I tell her that jealousy is a curse, but she says “ no way!” Her only other comments are “too much information” and “better you than me”.

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    2. The blog title was a no-brainer PJ - my mum leaves that book for dead! I'm assuming there's no bondage going on - but I'm too scared to ask! :D

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  13. Hi, Faye - I had previously read your comments on some of Leanne's posts and knew right away that I liked you. This post 100% confirms that thought. I'm glad to see you enjoying life on your own terms. Very inspirational!

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    1. Hi Retirementreflections. I retired 15 years ago. I have done a lot of overseas travelling and more than my fair share of dining out. Life is what you make of it and as they say “old age ain’t for sissies.” So it is up to each of us to get the most out of the life that is left to us.

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    2. Hi Donna - she certainly lives a very full life and there is lots of variety - which I think is the secret to having a great life. A little bit of travel, a little bit of eating out, a little bit of hanky panky, and a little bit of laziness - sounds like she has the winning formula!

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  14. Leanne your mother is awesome. Great job Faye. I so agree about back in the day men ran the world that is how my first marriage was.

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    1. Hi Mother and Daughter, I do so hope that your second time around is an improvement on Your first marriage. Confucius say “fools rush in where angels fear to tread.” I definitely will not be going down that path again. I only look silly!

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    2. Victoria I remember Mum being amazed at how "useful" my husband was around the house and how he was a partner in things rather than the one calling all the shots. I'm so glad I found the right balance and married at a time when men had started to lift their game. And I know you chose much more wisely the second time around :)

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  15. LOL Leanne your mum is a character!!! Lovely to meet you Faye :-)

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    1. Hi Janet, nice to meet you too. I may be a bit of a character, but definitely not one out of Fifty Shades of Grey. No whips or handcuffs involved in my life. Sorry to disappoint you Leanne. Now you know!

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    2. Hi Janet - yes Mum is certainly living large - and putting my dull life to shame - Maybe I'll burst into flower in my 70's too - something to look forward to (although my poor husband would probably faint at the thought!)

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  16. Hello Faye! It is so lovely to meet you and I'm Sue, Leanne's sister from another life. I wish I still had my Mum because I know she would be as active and vital as you. I think you are inspiring and a wonderful role model. You are getting on with living your life, your way and enjoying every moment. Bravo!!!

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    1. There's enough of Mum to share around Sue - and I'm sure she'd like another daughter - so be careful she doesn't adopt you. At least Mike is safe from her charms - he's too old!

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    2. Hi Sue, sorry I cannot adopt you, as my three children would have to share their inheritance four ways instead of three and that would not make them happy chappies.
      Thank you for your kind words. It is nice to meet you, as I have read so many of your comments on Leanne’s blog that I feel I know you.

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  17. Hello Faye! What a FUN post!! Somehow in the confusion of my last weekend, I missed this. Since you'd just commented on my guest post, when the '50 Shades of Faye' popped up as a recommended post, I just had to run over here and read.
    I'm SOOO glad I did! (And no - you didn't share too much. Just the "dessert" and the smile on your face is enough to tell the tale. And I think you're right, FWB status would definitely change if he moved in. My mom was dating a guy for a year or so, up until a few months ago. (I think she got bored.) But she was the same way - he's great to date, but we're each keeping our own homes. No more 24/7 for her.
    Have a wonderful weekend!

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  18. What a fun read learning about your mom! Thanks for sharing with us at The Blogger's Pit Stop! Roseann from This Autoimmune Life

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  19. Nice to learn more about you Faye. What a wonderful smile you share with Leanne. I just wrote a post on the power of a smile. You two have the power.
    I am with you on feeling 20 years younger. I probably don't fit Midlife either but I feel as though I do.
    All the best,
    Kathleen

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