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50 Things I Want To Do In My 50s

old-ageHi, Loves!

So as you all know I am turning 50 in about a week.  That’s a big one. It actually seems surreal.

You know how people often say, “Oh you don’t look like you’re 30, 40 or 50!” Like what exactly does any age look like? I am not sure what 50 should look or feel like.  I guess it feels exactly how I feel right now.

And I feel pretty awesome.  In a great place.  I love my job.  I have an amazing family.  A nice circle of friends.  I have health most importantly, but I feel like, and maybe some of you guy feel same- I feel like there are so many things I haven’t done. So I have compiled a list of things I want to do this year, experiences I want to have, places I want to go.

I’ve been really thinking about things I’ve always wanted to do and have not done yet. So in commemoration of my blogs one year anniversary – here is my list of  50 things I want to do in my 50s. (And these are not in any particular order of importance.)

  1. Do more yoga. Like aside from the physical I would like to know yoga with my yogaspirit.
  2. Go to Maine and eat lobster.
  3. Move to a nicer, bigger place. Maybe even become a homeowner.
  4. Skydive, though I don’t know if I’ll actually do it.
  5. Go to Europe, I’ve never been.
  6. Blog more.  At least once a week. Really grow my blog and hopefully do some influencing.
  7. Write. Start writing that book. About what? I’m not sure yet.
  8. Probably take some writing lessons in order to write that book.
  9. Run a marathon.
  10. Sell at least 5 homes this year.
  11. Go visit Graceland. I am a huge Elvis fan.
  12. Become debt free.
  13. Go on a family vacation with my girls and grandkids – something as simple as the shore.
  14. Volunteer more.
  15. Take a road trip cross country.
  16. Meditate more.
  17. Create a meditating space at home.
  18. Find a Buddhist temple near me and engage in some learning.
  19. Read more books- hard copies!
  20. Spend more time with my mom. Create some kind of a tradition/ritual with her.
  21. Journal EVERYDAY.
  22. Write a letter to Oprah. Don’t ask. Hopefully get a response.
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    Self-care is most important in my 50s.
  23. More self-care things like monthly massages and/or facials.
  24. Grow my hair and possibly let it gray naturally.
  25. Declutter. Really live minimally.
  26. See my dad more often.
  27. Learn some basic photography.
  28. Start a Vlog
  29. Send birthday cards to people instead of a social media post.
  30. Work out at least 5 times a week
  31. Move away from Facebook.
  32. Speak more Spanish to my grandbabies.
  33. Maybe learn another language – I love Portuguese, BUT I know some Italian, sooo maybe.
  34. Apply to be on a game show – I’ve done this several times (never made it) – the freaking application for Wheel of Fortune is insane.
  35. Play in the rain/mud.
  36. Spend more time down the shore
  37. Live a healthier lifestyle overall
  38. Learn how to swim finally!
  39. Quit drinking alcohol.
  40. Go parasailing.
  41. Take tango lessons.
  42. Create a daily practice of journaling, meditating, exercising, and eating healthy.
  43. Be kinder to people – smile more (guilty of RBF). LOL!
  44. Build my family tree (I did my DNA and it was sooo interesting).
  45. Go ziplining again – IT was amazing.
  46. Visit an ashram.
  47. Visit more bookstores.
  48. Celebrate NYE on an island somewhere.

Isn’t this list amazing?  Now listen, clearly I can’t do all of this in ONE year, but you best believe I am starting.

I will reflect on this list throughout this year and make sure I am making moves to check off these 50 items off my bucket list in my 50s.

What’s on your list of things to do?  You don’t have to wait until your 30, 40 or 50 to start your list and to start checking off those things that stir your soul.

Life is so short and in my almost 50 years, I’ve seen how quickly a life is snuffed out whether to disease or accident.  I have been blessed thus far and I’ve done a lot, but there is more I want to do and plan to do!

Someone I knew once said, “Don’t wait for another day or another hour or another time.  Go and Do It. Now” – Kyrzayda –

So just watch me guys!  Here’s to 50!

Happy birthday to me!

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Cheers to me!

Thanks for stopping by and reading.  Make sure to like, comment, share and follow!

LolaUncorked♥

 

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I can’t believe I have to blog about funeral etiquette…SMH!

Hey lovies!  I have so many drafts of blogs to finish and post- BUT I had to come on here to address death and wake/funeral etiquette.  Because apparently in this day and age of technology and social media many have lost all common sense.

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We recently lost a very much loved member of our family.  It was one of those expected, unexpected things.  And at almost 50, dealing with death, wakes and funerals is no easier than it was in my teens, 20s or 30s.

What I have noticed however is that the way people grieve coupled with techonological access equates to such an unbelievable disrespect and disregard for the dead and their families that it compelled me to write this blog.

Listen, I think that technology has so many advantages and has opened endless possibilities for networking, entrepreneurial success, and solving crimes and just spreading information.  I mean, I myself can’t remember life before all this access can’t imagine life without it.  Though the idea of disconnecting for a month sounds heavenly.

But in the midst of all these technological gains, we have also suffered many losses – common sense and sensitivity.   We have become so desensitized to real live human interactions that we don’t even know how to act when someone passes.

I get that we all grieve and suffer the loss of a loved one differently.  Some people maydeath1 cry uncontrollably for days on end, others may not show any emotion and people may think they are insensitive and yet others may have a need to inundate themselves in work and mundane tasks in an effort to not deal.  Everyone grieves differently, but I am going to remind some of you of things NOT to do at a wake or funeral.

This list was compiled as a result of a conversation I had with my family about the things we observed over this past week while making arrangements.

And as you guys know I love lists – it just helps me organize myself.  So here goes – things NOT to do at a wake or funeral.

  1. When a family is grieving and planning for their loved ones services, do NOT impose your thoughts, practices, or opinions into the arrangements of the deceased UNLESS you’re planning on paying for the services. Like who else would know a father or mother better or more, than their own kids. You can’t force your ideals or practices from the past on today. Just, just, be still and offer comfort in silence.
  2. The wake, especially, is a time to sit in reverence, remember, cry, and support. The receiving line is your time to offer some words of comfort, a hug or a handshake and done. This is NOT the time to ask the family what happened. How did it happen? or to offer words like, “Oh but he was so young.” or “Maybe if he or she had done this or that.” Like really?
  3. This one is huge! The Biggest! The Most Important! DO NOT TAKE OUT YOUR
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    Like really, I googled cell phones and funerals and I can NOT believe what I found….

    PHONES.  If you  have to make a call, step out.  If you have to give someone information about the services.  Do NOT Snap or post IG Live videos, do NOT take selfies or group pictures next to the casket or anywhere for that matter.  Do NOT, please do NOT video tape people at the wake, who are crying and grieving. Do NOT video tape the funeral mass and please do NOT video tape the lowering of the casket!!! (Someone did at the funeral site and I kept wishing they would drop their phone in the grave. SMH!)

  4. Common sense folks!  I don’t care if you ask the family.  Actually don’t even ask the family. These people are in mourning, they are sad and upset, they are probably exhausted from the planning and visits and crying.  Just don’t do it.  It’s disrespectful to the people who are there honoring a life gone. Not to mention to the deceased.
  5. This is a funny one and actually happened.  LOL. But should be addressed.  Make sure if you go up to someone, a family member you haven’t seen in a while, that before you start sobbing on their shoulder they know who you are.  AWKWARD!
  6. And if you’re that person that someone goes up to sobbing uncontrollably and you don’t remember who they are because maybe you haven’t seen them in decades, don’t look around at the crowd with a stunned look on your face and hands out like “Who the hell is this?” Play it off, please and ask questions later.
  7. And lastly, but I am sure not least, after the services are done and the family has said their goodbyes remember they have been going through the process long before you heard about the person passing, especially if the person had suffered a long illness.  So when it’s over the family needs time to sit, pray, cry, remember and  be alone.  Don’t show up at their house unexpectedly.  Don’t get upset if your calls or texts go unreturned.  Just let them be.  Let them absorb it all.  Let them be quiet.  Let them be still. Let them mourn.

Watching some of the above, actually occur left me perturbed and kind of sad   We can’t even go to a wake and sit in reverence and pray for the deceased and that’s a shame.

Here are some websites on funeral etiquette if you’d like to do further reading: https://www.frazerconsultants.com/2017/11/funeral-etiquette-cell-phone-use-at-funerals/, and www.funeralwise.com/etiquette/. Apparently I am not the only person out there who feels people need a common sense refresher.

We will profoundly miss our Moises.  What an honor it has been knowing him and becoming family.  He leaves behind a legacy that we all hope to live up to.

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In loving memory of Moises Santos

Thanks for reading lovies! Remember to like, follow, comment and share! See you soon!

LolaUncorked♥

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You can’t buy happiness, but you can buy books…

There is something magical about finding a quaint little bookstore in the middle of the hustle and bustle of a city.  A place you can slip into and escape the outside noise.  That’s not exactly what happened to me, but close enough.  I found this treasure on a quiet side street in Montclair (NJ).

If any of you know Montclair, have visited, worked, or lived in Montclair (or still do) you know that Montclair is known for its chic little boutiques, bougie international eateries, yoga studios and cozy cafes.  It’s a mini NYC right in our very own backyard.   https://www.montclairnjusa.org/

We weren’t looking for a bookstore.  We meaning myself, my photographer, Geraldine and her assistant.  We were just looking for a location to shoot some photos for my blog when we happened upon the Watchung Booksellers, a cute bookstore near the train station.   https://www.watchungbooksellers.com/.   

I literally felt like Dorothy arriving in Oz or Cinderella at the ball.  Watchung Booksellers has got to be the cutest little gem I’ve come across in a long time.  It was like a three scoop sundae with all the toppings! Want to know what the cherry on top was? Well, even if you don’t I will tell you anyway.   

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Look at that smile….books stores feel like home to me…

As I walked in absorbing the wooden shelves, rows of books and cozy reading areas, I turned to my left and to my wandering eyes what should I see?

A little cafe – Da Pepo.  Complete with chalkboard announcing “Wait to be seated”, wine glasses for BYOB, farm-style grey washed tables where you could partake of paninis and things. 

I wanted to squeal like a kid on Christmas morning!  We immediately took over the cafe, after ordering three coffees and asking for permission to shoot some photos, of course.

We were having a ton of fun and just loved the space, but I couldn’t stop thinking about the bookstore next door.  I had peeped a wooden stepladder through the connecting doorway and I really, really, really wanted some photos on it!  I kept thinking Carrie Bradshaw with my cute french beret.

I finally asked an employee if we could take photos.  I explained that I am a blogger who blogs about a little bit of everything and I loved their space and really wanted pictures.  She referred me to a younger girl who I guess is in charge of social media.  She asked about my blog, agreed to the photos and asked that I tag her so they can follow me. Oh! She also asked for my blog site so they could follow it! Winning!  

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Books, books, and more books!

Look I know we have bookstores like Barnes and Noble and they serve their purpose, but it’s so big and bright and formal.  This book store was small and quaint and familiar.

Now let me back up a second.  I wasn’t planning on writing about this bookshop – it really was just a prop.  But something stirred in me as I walked around, posed, touched and smelled books.  A long hidden memory was tickling the edges of my mind.

And then I suddenly remembered a bookstore I used to frequent  (no let me rephrase that – nearly lived in ) back in Passaic where I grew up.  I can’t remember but I believe it was just called the Passaic Bookstore.  It was located at the end of Main street.  I remember spending hours a day several times a day after school in there as a depressed and angry teen.  LOL!

I would get lost picking up books, touching them, browsing, reading the first few pages trying to decide if it was worth the 75 cents it cost (clearance shelf).  And there was so much clutter!!!  Heavenly clutter! Every wall was lined with books, aisles had baskets filled with books and little tables piled high with more,  nooks and crannies where you could hide and get lost in.  

I remembered  that when I was no more than 15 or 16, I told myself I wanted to own a little bookstore when I grew up.  

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Cozy cafe attached to the bookstore…Da Pepo…Go check them out…they literally had a soft opening the day before the shoot..

I wanted something that felt like someone’s living room with dark wooden shelves, comfy plush seats, the smell of coffee brewing in the background mingled with the smell of old pages in a book. 

I haven’t held a book and read in a long time.  I used to read 3 or 4 books a month growing up.  Now I listen to 1 -2 books a year on Audible because I am always running around.  I have to say it’s not the same half-listening to a book while waiting to order coffee at the drive thru.

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Books are like heaven to me!!

I didn’t buy any books that day as much as I wanted to, but something about that bookstore stirred a long dormant love of books.  I don’t know if I will ever own my own bookstore, but I will definitely be going back to the little community bookstore in Montclair because if I can walk into a space that brings me as much joy as it did that’s a place I need to frequent more often.

Thanks for stopping by lovies! PC|geri_1221   http://www.geritorres.com/

P.S. Here a list of some of my favorite books EVERRRR! (I hope you share yours with me too!)

  1. Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert
  2. The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
  3. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  4. Pillars of the Earth . by Ken Follet
  5. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (of Course!)
  6. Passing by Nella Larsen (A MUST READ!)
  7. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Marquez
  8. Counte of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
  9. Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf
  10. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

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♥LolaUncorked

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One Love…One Jamaica…

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About to take off!!! Jamaica here I come…

Hey loves!! It has been some time since I’ve been on here, but #1 I just don’t have pics and it’s really annoying. #2 Been doing stuff in order to build blog material. #3 it’s summa-time!!! So here goes! So I just got back from Jamaica! 

Oh what an AMAZING TIME!

Most of you know I am from the Dominican Republic.  If you didn’t, you know now.  LOL. 

I love the Dominican Republic and contrary to when I was younger when I used to go every summer to the same two places – the Capital and el campo, in the last ten years, I’ve tried to expand my Dominican travel palate. 

I branched out and visited places like Samana, Macao, actually stayed in Boca Chica and Santiago.  And I love everything about DR, Well, almost everything. That’s another blog.

Jamaica was E V E R Y T H I N G!  I flew into Montego Bay and drove to Negril where I was staying. Reunited with that high school friend and went with probably one of the best, easiest and low maintenance travel partner ever!!!  (Check out my blog about traveling solo.)jamaican flag

The people were hospitable! Actually that’s an understatement !! Every single Jamaican I encountered on and off resort was really great. So friendly and well mannered. Not that I expected anything other right??

Because I mean I don’t know about you but when I’ve worked all year and use my hard earned money to go away I want- no, I DEMAND exceptional service. Hence one of my peeves with my peeps in DR. Again another blog.

It just seemed to come easily to the people in Jamaica. From the grounds workers, my favorite bartender Paulette who I made sure to see everyday, to the poor pasta station worker who worked in 200 degree weather making the most delicious pasta ever!!!. I mean they were just downright pleasant I’ve experienced on vacation.  I’m just saying.

I didn’t do much of anything but hang poolside or beach, at bar, and/or eat! I was not trying to hang glide, go horseback riding or jump off cliffs. And it was just perfect. I wanted to rest and relax under the hot Caribbean sun!

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Hanging at the beach! Feeling myself.

Only time we ventured out was to Rick’s Cafe which until I got there didn’t realize was THE spot for spotting sunsets. And I was a part of the most significant sunset.  

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the sunset at Rick’s Cafe.

Good times. Good times. I will definitely go back and visit some other places. Like actually stay in Montego Bay and eventually go visit Kingston! Negril was fantastic. The water was so clear and clean and calm.  

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Everything is better at the beach!

Oh and the food was awesome. Omg. That Jamaican jerk chicken?!?? Gasp. Had it every day. Delish! One of the problems when I went to Belize was that I didn’t find the Belize had a broad Belizean palate. 

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May I have a Red Stripe, please?!?!

Most of what I ate was American food, except for the lobster that was literally picked out of ocean for me. 

Not Jamaica ! Jamaica’s jerk chicken, roasted chicken, seafood salad, rice, and white rum were yummmmm!

Jamaica is definitely one of those places I will visit again. Left me yearning to see more and mingle more with the locals.  

 

 

 

Look at my little gallery I posted for ya’ll! Look at that sunset, tho?!?!

So if you haven’t been – please add to your bucket list and make it a point. After all, mon, Jamaica is all about one love, Jamaican-me-crazy, and some good ole healthy ganja. If that’s you’re thing!!

One love my loves!  

♥LolaUncorked

 

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Live your best life….now…and let others live theirs!

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Hi my loves!  I am back!  My quick little trip to Miami was fantastic!  I can’t say enough about South Beach.  There’s just something about that town. I know people are like “Oh God, bitches go to Miami and this is all they talk about for months!” Well for good reason I think!  

Has it changed over the course of my years visiting? Absolutely! But, I still love it.  I love that everything and anything goes in Miami. I was there for two nights and I have to say I made sure to enjoy every second of it. 

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Welcome to Miami….

I remember about 15 years ago, (Yes I am aging myself, but who gives a shit? Not I!!!), Miami was a lot more BOU-gee than today!  85% of the people down there were fit and beautiful and took lots of care in their appearance. 

Many locals got to mingle with international tourists and if you didn’t go with some kind of bank you weren’t going to have the same experience! (of course, guys this was MY experience, but I would love to hear about yours)

People were so put together and beautiful that people watching was a sort of soft porn.  Like really!  From the bartenders to the servers to the hosts at the restaurants to the random guy riding on a bike down Ocean Drive – they were all fit! 

Even the 77 year old I met like 15 years ago was dashing and debonair with his white hair and white suits!  Oh! and let’s not forget the COPS!  I think it must be a requirement that you’re fit and good looking to become a cop in South Beach.

Anyway, I am a people watcher so I loved watching all these beautiful people waking by – back and forth, back and forth.  They reminded me of the stingrays swimming back and forth, back and forth in Belize.  No lie!

Even though all the eye candy was fun back then, I love SOBE more now.  Why?  I love it because NOBODY!, I mean N O B O D Y seems to feel self conscious in Miami.  Nobody seems to have any hangups about their bodies or clothing or who they are with or going solo.   

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People watching…. Not really but I like this pic….LOL

It feels to me as if people of all genders, ages, races, and sizes go to SOBE and transform themselves.

Women and men strut around with such confidence in their wigs and heels, coverups and bright ass speedos,  young and old as if they didn’t have a care in the world.

Even better is the fact that nobody seems to judge.  I can sit in front of Mangos (MY FAVORITE PLACE!!!)  www.mangos.com/miami/ and just watch as the crowds walk by for hours.

SOBE is the place to go if you want to get lost for a few days.  If you want to disappear and just breathe.  Pretend to be someone else or just be yourself.  It doesn’t matter.  

I stayed at the Whitelaw Hotel www.whitelawhotel.com/‎.  It was my second time there.  Located on Collins and 8th.  A block from Wet Willies  (not a fan but Hey! Call A CAB!)  and the News Cafe – Gianni Versace’s breakfast spot and a couple blocks from Mangos (. whitelaw3

The hotel is cute and swanky.  They belong to the South Beach Group https://www.southbeachgroup.com/en/home/ and sponsor a free happy hour from 6-7pm everyday in all their hotels. I would definitely stay there again.

But anyway, Ocean Drive is not the only place to people watch.  You can do it all over SOBE, even on Collins Avenue where you can find any number of cute bars and restaurants with outdoor seating like the Bacon Bitch   https://www.baconbitch.com/   which sponsors a fine menu of bacon inspired dishes and asks you if you’re the Main Bitch? Side Bitch? Naked Bitch? Extra Bitch? and several other bitches?  

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Which bitch are you?

I’m Extraaaaaa…lol…Hey! Extra is what got us into the Fountainbleau pool party on Saturday.  As I dressed my daughter asked, “Mom, You’re wearing that to a pool?”  

I was like, “We are not going to a pool, we are going to the Fountainbleau!” and so I rolled up in there like the bou-gee chick I totally am NOT! but it got us a bed and some drinks and MORE importantly we met some pretty awesome guys who shared their bed and their bottles with us.  

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#bathrooomselfi @thefountainbleau

A smorgasbord of people from all walks of life intertwined with local SOBE-ers and Floridians just soaking up the sun, eating good food, and living their best life.

It’s a skip, hop and $250 (approx.) airplane ride away from the cold, dirty streets of NJ and it literally is like stepping into another world.

So if you haven’t been, please go check it out! And if you have let me know when you want to go back!  I’m in there.  

Because living your best life doesn’t require a lot.  Only requires the thing that you love or moves you or gives you joy -anything from sleeping a weekend away watching Netflix and drinking wine, or doing having a self care day, or reading a favorite book for hours. Or visiting distant places.

Living your best life is one in which you get joy from the little and big things and you take care to not deprive others from living theirs. So tell me how are you living your best life?

liveyourbestlife

 

LolaUncorked♥