The feminine mystique

A heart that whispers

I am ready to love

A body yearning

So fragile

delicate

but ready to touch

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Her spirit

Her essence

Her breath entwined

Thoughts that magic sprinkle

A mysterious mind

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A beauty alluring

Complex

unique

Compelling

Universal celebration

Looking within

The feminine mystique

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Photo by Sue Vincent

Menopause

Menopause is normal. The symptoms of menopause do not have to be a part of your life.

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Attempting to capture light hearted take on Menopause

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Please excuse me

I need to fan myself

I feel so goddam hot

But where is my fan, I need it now

it seems where i put it, I FORGOT

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Oh dear, I think my pants have shrunk in the wash

my goodness they feel so tight

a salad a day is all i eat

I am still so bloated despite

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My stress in high

my libido is low

my belly and chin hairs

continue to grow and grow

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i look in the mirror

Just as I feared

I resemble my 80 year old mother

I now own 3 chin hairs, it’s my very own a beard

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I no longer ovulate

My eggs have up and flown

My periods are heavy

I have low progesterone

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My estrogen is low

My lady bits are dry

Having sex is painful

I try to not to cry

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i get so weepy

I’m always sleepy

my family say I’m bitchy

My skin is itchy

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Who are these kids

Mine?

Ive forgotten their names

John

Joe, Jesse

Jimmy

oops I mean oh its James

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Why is this happening

what is the cause

My doctor says you are normal Dear

it is “ONLY” menopause

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YES it is normal. It is the natural advancement in a woman’s life.

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Do you have to experience and live with the symptoms of menopause

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No!

Weirdos walkabout


WE EXPERIENCED THE SPORT OF ROGAINING TODAY.

What’s that you ask?

That’s a great question!

The standard definition goes like this: –

Rogaining is the sport of long distance cross-country navigation in which teams of two to five members visit as many checkpoints as possible in the specified time. Here in Victoria, Australia, rogaines are typically run over periods of 6, 12 or 24 hours. In a bush rogaine teams travel entirely on foot, navigating by map and compass between checkpoints in terrain that varies from open farmland to hilly forest.

How the weirdo walkabout in Inverloch definition went is like this 

Our event was more of a community based, fun event, even though we had elite athletes enter, yes we had ironman team enter our event and consequently win.

Suggestions for things we needed to bring on our event day:

* mandatory: pen ✅

* recommended: rain jacket, hat, sunscreen, sunglasses, water bottle, $$ for coffees, suitable footwear ✅

* consider: card table for your map during route planning ❌ next time we will spend more time pre-planning. Well this was our first rogaine. 

A few of our rules

➢ all team members must remain within speaking distance of each other throughout the event –

The urge was there for the experienced runners to charge ahead. No we must stay together. Of course then we would experience the middle age bladder, the need for one to go to the toilet, the others have to wait. Of course, not everyone needs to go at the same time, so 15 minutes later, patiently waiting again as another MA (middle ager) goes. 

Missing an opportunity to gain further points we would watch dishearteningly as other teams would pass us… was that a smirk I just saw on that team leaders face? Come on hurry up hurry up. 

➢ go to checkpoints in any order; go to as many as you can & want to in allotted time.

We worked out about halfway through that we should’ve gone to the outermost destinations on the map. They were worth higher points. Focus more on getting our bonus points, such as eating and drinking in designated cafes and photo opportunities with the multitude of peculiar and well known stuffed toys around the region.

➢ you must go to the checkpoint to get the answer – no guessing or using Internet, or submitting answers you have prior knowledge of. 

I was tempted.

➢ Start event at or after 9am :- hooter to sound at 9am. 

No problems there! We arrived at 8:15 am we were ready to roll at 9 am.

➢ return completed clue sheet by 1pm :- 10 point penalty for every 1 minute late. 

We handed in our map and answered questions at 12:56 pm

➢ points are the checkpoint number rounded to 10s, eg for #83, 80 points, for #102, 100 points; wrong answer gets penalty of equivalent points.

Our last hour was spent on the outskirts of Inverloch, scoring ourselves hundreds of points.

➢ Bonus points: State names of soft toys when you locate them;  where photos required, tick box once photo taken, & show scorers photos at finish; bring receipts from designated cafes (1 receipt per team per cafe at which one or more team members ate or drank)

we did, we photographed, we laughed. 

➢ call Weirdo’s Walkabouts if needing clarification regarding any checkpoints or clues:- 3 calls per team allowed (mobile numbers will be on notice board at event entry station)

No calls were made by us! 

This fabulous event took a group of 8 women who represent the middle age / peri menopausal group being 45 plus, to the beautiful beachside hamlet of Inverloch that saw us navigate in bush, beach, up and down hills, into cafes, checking letter boxes, climbing trees, locating soft toys found by utilising some part of the middle age brain that no longer functions in peri menopausal women. Somehow we deciphered the cryptic clues, went on to produce some classic photos taken with, Shrek, pooh bear, Spiderman, a dodo bird and many others. Basically we were running / walking all across and around this lovely town. Finding shade amongst the lush green surroundings, enjoying a quiet moment, well, as quiet as eight women giggling together can be and whilst appreciating the protection from the wind and rain in a small cavern set inside the beach mountain.

Locating weird and wonderful destinations to find yet another answer to another crazy question. We delighted in some local artwork and sculptures, for a brief moment the sun shone upon us, enjoying the beautiful scenery and surroundings that our non competitive competition took us on.

No no, this is not competition, we are not being competitive, we are raising money for a charity, enjoying the day and spending time with each other.

We laughed at and with each other over 4 hours. Stopping for a short respite at the nominated cafes, “a long black coffee please”, “a latte”, “I’ll have that pie” another of our crew yelled, “please can we have a receipt with that”. Each purchase at a designated cafe earned us another 50 points. Yesss, we would scream as we ticked yet another box to earn another 150 points.

Pre Rogaine

The morning started something like this

Alarms going from 7 am. Eight women in one apartment, however, very thankful for the two bathrooms and toilets.

“Are you having breakfast”? “No I’m not hungry”. “You better eat, it’s gonna be hours before we can eat again”. “Okay I’ll have a coffee and some toast”. “I’m going to have some muesli”, “do you want some muesli”? “No I’m gonna have scrambled eggs, who wants scrambled eggs”? “no I’m not hungry”, “oh okay I better have some scrambled eggs”. “I’ll have some avocado as well please, 2 pieces of toast”, (seriously & you are not hungry) “Oh it looks cold outside, it’s raining”. “Are you wearing a beanie”? “I’m gonna wear my crop top and my jacket, I get hot sweats, I don’t want to overheat”. It’s 9°, do you really think you are going to overheat”? “Ok I will I’ll put a T-shirt over my crop top”. “I’m wearing my thermals and my jacket, plus my waterproof jacket” “What if you get hot”? “I’ll tie it around my waist”. “Won’t that be annoying”? “I don’t think I’ll get too hot, I feel the cold”. “do you think maybe I should wear a warm jacket”? “Yes I do”. “Gloves, who is wearing gloves” ? Yes me, me , me, I’m taking gloves, “do you have a spare pair of gloves”? “yes I do, do you want me to bring them for you”? “No! I should be okay.” “I’ll take your spare pair of gloves”. “I’ve got two pair of socks on”? “I’m taking my beanie, have you got a backpack”? “Can I put my spare pair of gloves in your backpack”? “I’m gonna wear my thin jacket”, “I’m gonna wear my pink jacket”. The conversation was crazy, funny, factual, made sense, at the same time made no sense, if anyone had of been listening. Yikes!

I wish I had recorded that 15 minutes of conversation. This is this was how the whole 48 hours with this group of women went. Sound crazy? Perhaps, but this is a group of women all around the same age group who support each other, and care about each other, laugh at each other, laugh with each other, look after each other. This was a group of caring women. Caring about each other.

Piling into two cars, we head to the starting point. As we wait, the sun comes out, it begins again. Being the only backpack carrier, can I have my car key out of your bag? yes! I’m going to put my beanie and gloves back in the car.

Middle Ager arrives back to the group, the rain starts, can I have my car key back again? I’m going back to get my beanie and my gloves.

The day was rain, wind, sunshine, but, never warm.

The event ended with 8 girls exhausted & hungry.

I’m starving, if I don’t eat I’ll die, I’m dying of thirst. I need a cake and coffee, where can we go, I want vegetarian, Oh I need a hot pie, hot coffee please, I want eggs and bacon. So it went. 8 women scurried off in three different directions. Meeting back at a pop up clothes shop. Of course how can 8 girls go away for a weekend and not go shopping.

Drive back to our warm apartment and here it goes. “I’ve got a blister on the heel of my foot”, “I’ve got a blister on my toe”, “my knee is aching, look at it it’s three times its normal size” as everyone squeals in displeasure at the pockets of fluid protruding out of one knee. ” I need a massage”, “I’ll massage you” says another.

I sit back and laugh as I listen to these conversations.

This group of amazing women are a contrast of various orientated business women. Meet Gaye an online entrepreneur/sales/fitness fanatic/marathon runner, Julie a doctor/yoga instructor/cyclist, a multi talented woman she is, Janette a plant based eater/pilates instructor/functional fitness trainer dabbling in menopause coaching/writer/dog rescuer, Karen a extraordinary hairdresser/interior designer/ski bunny/fashionista, Kathy a developer and real estate guru/animal sanctuary volunteer, extreme sports and risk taker, Mandy a personal assistant/saving the environment/a highly intelligent exercise enthusiast, Andrea a level headed, smart medical secretary/museum and history lover/can do anything she sets her mind too/ does not love exercise and finally Shelle another interior designer/vegan/entrepeneur/teaching and inspiring women to be all they can and makes fabulous funky outfits, headbands & bags.

All contributing to making our world a little bit of a better place to live in.

The afternoon witness beautiful insightful chats, healthy and unhealthy nibbles, whinges about painful body parts,forgetfulness and hot flushes.

The phone call came, our teams came first and second respectively in the veteran females. Third overall. Not bad for a bunch of middle-aged menopausal women attempting their first Rogaine. Of course you could go to one, the elite on man team, who happened also to be veterans. Go the veterans first, second and third, the youngish fabulous oldies. Veterans were in the age bracket of 40plus, hardly what I would call a veteran but ill go with it.

Time for a cocktail at the RACV beachside resort, to celebrate a our placing in the event. Seriously did we need an excuse? Karen and Andrea may have started celebrating already. Champers in hand. Shhh what happens in Inverloch stays in…. Inverloch

Dinner at the local Japanese Tomo saw us 8 hungry women over order & over eat. The food was divine. They catered to Shelle and Janette’s plant based dietary requirements perfectly.

8 Women arrived back to their Apartment before 8 PM.

Seriously what happened to the days of arriving home at 3 AM, staggering to bed? Reliving the events of the night before, the next morning.

By 8:30 PM we had cups of tea, chocolate, cake, and we were playing a game of Scattergories. This led to many more laughs due to our forgetfulness and inability to remember a certain word. “It’s on the tip of my tongue” “what’s that word again”?. “Why won’t my brain work anymore”?

Menopause darling, menopausal brain fog.

I used to be a highly intelligent woman.

Our final morning was not without drama. Karen and Andrea decided to head out for a bike ride around town to make plans for our last day. Mandy and Janette were heading to the gym. On arrival at the gym, a frantic phone call advised us Karen has had an accident, you need to get back.

Our dear friend Karen, the pillar of our group, larger than life, she, who laughs at everything, had come off her bike due to the wet and slippery road conditions. She was in tears with a suspected a broken ankle. Julie our resident doctor rang ahead to the closest hospital and two of the girls accompanied her, where it was confirmed she had indeed, a broken ankle, possibly and most probably requiring surgery. This beautiful positive woman was still smiling as she lay in hospital.

48 hours of fun, laugh, hot flushes, forgetful moments and friendship.

Next one in June. Now this is a serious one how do you think we will go?

Thanks girls for the laughs ❤️

#repost

http://janettebendle.com/2019/04/29/weirdos-walkabout/

#writephoto

#fowc

#rdl

2017 friends turning fifty, middle age, Travel and kids

Whilst less extravagant than 2016, nonetheless it was a year of travel. Smaller trips encompassed a weekend to Lorne. One of my favorite places on earth. Next  a 5 day cruise with mums in tow to Tasmania, followed by a week on the Land of the long white cloud, South Island New Zealand. Wow. It’s beauty unsurpassed. Lake Wanake, it’s magnificence leaves me speechless. Tasmania again, with my mum again. Tassie is an Aussie asset, without a doubt.

Catch ups. Everyone is turning 50. Rescuing animals, loving animals, acrobalance workshops, doing handstands, acro-flying, you name it, we did it. Yoga, birthdays, my dogs, my boys, work, classes, training, vegans, rescue sanctuary. Kids flying the coup! Overseas travel, Just loving life.

Written on 31/12/17

Here I go again, apologies upfront
Yes it’s another long one
You can bow out now or take the punt

Another New year is upon us once again
I’m still happy, healthy and fit, AMEN

We partied at my friends, dressed up, yes there was sparkles & glitz
We had a band, there was champers & beer
I had too much aperol spritz

Many events, this year, have taken place
The year has flown
Life sets a very fast pace

Last year ended and began again in the city
A weekend with the best of friends,
Does it need to end, what a pity

15 Mums and daughters took to the high sea
We sailed from Melbourne and around Tasmania
We made new memories, my Mum and me

Catch up dinners, regularly, this group of Mums and kids
I bet these Mums would not give up their daughters
No way, these girls are awesome, not for a million quids

4 days in New Zealand, I did go
A stunningly beautiful destination
In the top 10 of happiest countries, did you know?

While I was there I caught up with my old school friend Kate
Gorgeous to see her
we had scrumptious brunch date

Europe beckoned for kade my son
Elliot his mate joined in the Fun
You returned my memories of 30 years ago
When I spent my first Christmas in the snow
I gave you one more hug & stared into your face
I was sad, happy, excited , I held on, for one more second
That mother son embrace

I watched you walk through the big sliding door
So proud, but please turn around
So I can see your beautiful face, once more

Kyle my grown up younger son
Brings Fun and uncontrollable laughter to everyone
Can skull a beer in less than 5 seconds
It’s Bendle’s on a bender trick, when the party beckons

The BAD bits

Cancer is such ugly disease
It has attacked one of our own with heinous ease

It chooses its victims with no apparent care
Its chooses the good ones, life is sometimes unfair

We have watched from afar, your body, so very tired
But you hold your head high, inspirational to say the least
I speak for one & all, we are so very inspired.

GOOD stuff this year, wow, 50ths galore
Next year we can expect a few more

Craigs Big night in June, was just was the beginning
Julies in October, lefts us all grinning
Karens in November, had all in a trance
As all the girls performed their flash mob dance

A photo booth that sparked many a laugh
Too much booze, caused many to barf
Police were called to one noisy do
But the party continued on without further ado
Next there was the Beatles, ABBA & Kiss
Madonna, Suzie & Amy didn’t go amiss
But the hit of the night, the ultimate pop star
Was none other than Karen Wescott aka Lady Gaga

Reunions of any sort, such a buzz
I was reunited on Facebook
With my long lost Irish cuz

A school reunion at the nightclub chasers
So so many,
familiar faces

Some unchanged
A few estranged
Lives explained
Figures retained
New friendships gained
But best of all, we were all entertained

Movie dates with my mum,
My confidante, my mentor & my best chum

Catch ups often with good friends
Does this socialising never end
Is there a health retreat you’d recommend
So my worn out old body can please mend

Sydney, port Douglas & palm cove
In August we hired a car, we drove & drove
From Sydney and espresso martini’s
to Port Douglas and teeny-weeny bikinis

Now at the studio, I am joined by Anna
Yoga, pilates, workshops
Look out for our banner

Our timetable updated on a regular basis
We look forward to greeting many new faces

Grand final day, always at the Walkers
Great food, great company, boisterous loud talkers
Tigers were the grand final winners this year
From all at the party, an almighty cheer

10 girls, on the day before, took a limo ride
Raising money for ovarian cancer we sat side by side
A wine, some lunch, a dance or three
End of the day, shoes off, what will be will be

November saw a trip away
Craig & I, with 2 mums at play
Hobart so pretty was the place to stay
Hot chips & red wine, freezing down at Sandy bay

Facebook to date

70 new friends have been made
The ban of puppy mills, new laws were laid
Phyllis Smith is my dark head twin
Apparently I was born to stand out, so why fit in
Facebook told me, so it must be so
Jokes every Wednesday from Patrick Tranter
Make us go ho ho ho
I topped the naughty side on Santas naughty & nice list
Regular events, not to be missed
Ads for this, and ads for that
Celebrity trainers telling us how not to get fat
But mouth watering recipes regularly adorn my page
Tips on how to live to 100 and anti age
I’m 369% asshole, this cannot be so
But I am still laughing at Amber when she fell flat on her face
6 months ago 🤪

Phew!

I went to Rebeccas red hill farm
Don’t worry, I was done no harm
As 100s of hens set upon me
They hen pecked my ankles as I chuckled with glee
The joy of being with these girls
Outshone any diamonds or pearls
I played with her divine rescue lambs
I was putty in there little hoof hands
Charlie and Charlotte gave me the best day ever
I’m free for our next play date, anytime, whenever

All the sad losses in 2017, MAY THEY REST IN PEACE
From this earth, to a world above, to the angels, we release

Jerry Lewis made us laugh so hard
Legend Malcolm young, we held in high rockstar regard
David Cassidy he was so damn cute
Roger Moore so debonair always dressed in a suit
Tom petty, we loved him, HE was a heartbreaker
Hugh Hefner, was the playboy bunny maker

So many more, gone, not mentioned
may they Rest In Peace, our admiration for them
Only strengthened

So happy for Turia Pitt
My hero, an icon
I have to admit

A baby for them now makes three
A brand new life
This amazing woman, deserves everything happy

Christmas was here and gone already
New year upon us, you better get ready

Our final night of the year is once more here
I wish my family, friends, the world much happy cheer

Thank you for touching my life this & past years
Maybe our words & support for each other have
helped brave fears

To those who I have mentioned now, right here
Come close and lend me your ear

And I whisper, “Please don’t live a life of ALMOST” Live with passion”

Now get off your arses
And charge your glasses

Here’s to happiness, health & living passionately in 2018

My wish for you all is to continue.
Continue to be who you are, to astonish, in a mean world with your acts of kindness. (Maya Angelou)L

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