Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Valuable Camping Tips For Seniors

    I have always loved camping, but now that I'm getting older, I like my creature comforts and am more inclined to rent an RV for my next camping trip. Who doesn't love a soft bed and their own shower?

     My guest on the blog today is Will Bail, link-builder and web developer at LD SEO Sydney and he's here to share some valuable camping tips for seniors. Please welcome him to Meno Mama's site with lots of comment love!

Valuable Camping Tips For Seniors

Never let your age hold you back from anything, including camping. If you're a senior who is new to camping, consider these valuable camping tips before embarking on your big outdoor adventure.

Tips for Tent Camping

A big worry among many seniors is that tent camping may be too physically uncomfortable. They may also worry that setting up a tent will be a hard task. The good news is, modern-day tent camping is both easier and more comfortable than back in the old days. However, depending on how healthy and active you are, tent camping is something to definitely consider. It's inexpensive, and the grandchildren will love it!

  • Get a good air mattress, it will make sleeping on the ground much more comfortable. Remember to also get an air pump to inflate it. 

  • Modern tents are a lot easier to put up than the old fashioned tents you may remember. However, even modern tents require some dexterity, so if arthritis is an issue, you may need help. Also, get a tent bigger than you think you need, so you can also store your gear.

  • Consider what other gear you may need, such as a camp stove, water containers, camp chairs, etc.

Tips for Caravan and RV Camping

Camping with a caravan or a motorhome is a favorite among seniors; there is no need to struggle with putting up a tent, and there's a nice, comfortable bed inside. It's a great way to enjoy the outdoors, with all the comforts of home. Also, the grandchildren will love riding along in the “house on wheels!”

  • Many seniors won’t consider a caravan for camping because they don’t own one. However, caravans and campervans can be rented, so seniors can try it out. However, a caravan is more affordable than you may think. If you're curious about camping with a caravan, browse CampSmart for ideas.

  • Plan ahead; if you're going to a popular campground, it can fill up fast. Also, make sure to ask if there is a senior discount rate available. 

  • Driving a motorhome or towing a caravan is more challenging than simply driving a car. You need to focus solely on driving. Maneuvering a motorhome or caravan can also be a challenge; it pays to practice before you take off on your first adventure.

  • It’s also a good idea to choose a destination that's not too far away; you don't want to have a stressful drive or arrive at your destination extremely tired.

Camping, especially with an RV, is an inexpensive way for seniors to travel, have new experiences, and enjoy the outdoors. It's also a great activity to enjoy with the grandchildren; camping will create new bonds between you and the grandchildren while teaching the children valuable life skills.


Wilbert Bail is a link-builder and web developer at LD SEO Sydney. He has an adventurous mind but seldom travels as he would rather stay home and make the client's business website more visible on the internet. He likes techie stuff but won't buy any gadgets that are above $1000, hence no iPhone.

Friday, July 19, 2019

Fly On The Wall In The Old Folk's Home (Part 2)

     Welcome to another edition of Fly On The Wall group postings, hosted by Karen of Baking In A Tornado. Today, five bloggers are inviting you into their lives for a glimpse of what you might see if you were a fly on their wall.

     As my husband's 63rd birthday approaches, he has done nothing but complain about his various ailments. If it's not the carpal tunnel in his wrist, it's his sciatic nerve in the left leg that's bothering him. Some days it's his arthritic knee or his lower spine, which he is certain has a crushed vertebra from 1995 when our son caught him by surprise by launching off the bed onto his back. Recently, the doctor told him that his blood sugar was a bit high too and that he needed to consider a low carb diet. Bagels were once his BFF but now he gets mad at me when I serve lasagna or offer him a banana muffin. He is often cranky and tired---which I understand---but I'm starting to feel like I'm living in an old folk's home.

     In true fly-on-the-wall fashion, here are some typical conversations we have about his health:

"If your back hurts that much, why not sleep with the heating pad on all night?"
"Oh sure, that's not dangerous at all.....a heating pad left on all night, then in the morning it's ashes to ashes...."

"This low carb diet is making me nuts. It was my turn to set up the donuts in the breakroom today, and it killed me that I couldn't eat one. I just started gnawing on my arm."

"I have a bone density test today. At my age, I'm worried they'll tell me I've already been deboned."

"The doctor said I should take CBD oil for my sciatic nerve pain. Does this mean my left leg will get high?"

"Help me unload the groceries from the car."
"That's funny you ask because my arms have been cut off. I can't help."
"What's even funnier is that you're about to have your head cut off if you DON'T help."

"Sitting in the waiting room at the vet's office this morning, I overhead someone talking about a dog with a bad eye and only three teeth."
"Sounds like they were describing you in ten years."

"Wow, the news is full of depressing stories. A white water rafting accident, an airplane malfunction and a carnival ride that broke down, injuring several people."
"Well, there's three activities I can cross off my retirement wish list."

"You know you're getting old when you hear 80's music playing at the grocery store and you think, Hmmm...I need to add that song to my playlist."

"Have you tried that new Facebook face App that ages you by 50 years?"
"I'm turning 63. If I did that app, the only photo I'd see is a skeleton with big eyebrows."

     Well, I for one refuse to let my age stop me (but I'm almost four years younger than him, so it's easy for me to say that). Just ignore my limp when you see me hobbling out of Zumba class, and don't bother looking in my medicine drawer ( I swear, the sore muscle salve and plantar fasciitis pads are his, not mine!!). Age IS just a number, right??

     See that photo below of the secret smile? That was my expression when I recently learned that a personal essay I submitted to the NEW YORK TIMES is going to be published in November!! I've pretty much been hyperventilating ever since I received the news. This is HUGE for me since NYT has been on my bucket list since I first started blogging in 2011. The other site I've coveted for years is McSweeney's, and as you might know by now, they published my first humor piece two weeks ago, so YAY!! My mum knew how important these two sites were to me, and she told me never to give up. Her advice---persistence---paid off. Love you, Mum, and miss you. I just wish you were here to celebrate with me.

Buzz around, see what you think, then click on these links for a peek into some other homes:

Baking In A Tornado        
Never Ever Give Up Hope   
Menopausal Mother           
Spatulas on Parade           
Bookworm in the Kitchen   

Friday, July 12, 2019

12 Things You Should Never Do At Home If You've Been Drinking

     Most of us have done it at one time or another---tied one on while sitting at home on a Saturday night (and thankfully, not behind the wheel of a car---EVER). After experiencing a massive, head-splitting hangover the next day, we usually learn our lesson. But sometimes it takes more than a single night of praying to the porcelain god to get the message across that getting drunk is NOT FUN. Stuff happens when we drink too much....bad things.

     Next time you think you can handle that extra cocktail, think again....or else you might end up regretting your alcohol-infused decisions the next morning when you wake up to a shaved-off eyebrow or a wad of peppermint gum knotted in your hair (don't ask how I know). What else could possibly go wrong? Well, I wouldn't attempt any of the following if I was busy tying one on at home:

1. Google your hangover symptoms on WebMD and discover that you either have gout, IBS or leprosy.

2. Create a single's profile on with the user name, "Big Meat."

3. Cut your bangs with kitchen shears....but only if you dig the Friar Tuck look.

4. Impulse-shop on eBay and buy a Daenerys Targaryen wig for your cat, along with an inflatable Iron Throne.

5. Call your Mother-in-law to announce that you're tired of her dry rump roast recipe and that this year you'll be hosting an all-vegan Easter dinner complete with faux ham made from wheat gluten and yeast.

6. Drunk text your boss in Klingonese.

7. Mow the lawn at night, decapitating every sprinkler head in the yard.

8. Update your status on Facebook: "Does anyone recognize this weird rash on my groin?" (photo included).

9. Apply Dollar Store tanning lotion to your face and body. In the morning everyone will think you spent the weekend sunning at Mar-a-Lago.

10. Invite a friend who owns a home tattoo kit to come over and ink something on an unmentionable part of your body; something that will be seen by every gynecologist you visit from now until eternity.  

11. Investigate that strange sound outside from behind the trash cans. Decide that you missed your calling as a "rodent whisperer" and attempt hand-feeding that cute mother possum and her babies.

12. Spice up things in the bedroom with your partner by trying out the Kama Sutra g-force position. Call out of work tomorrow for a herniated disc.

***WANT MORE MENO MAMA?? I am SO THRILLED to share my debut piece on the coveted McSweeney's site! This has been on my bucket list for several years now, so you can imagine how HAPPY I AM!! You can check it out here:

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

How To Change Your Skincare Routine After Menopause

     Today on the blog I have guest writer Subhangini Prakash, who is the CEO and Founder of Feather & Bone, a successful skincare company. She is sharing some great advice on the best skincare routine for women who are at the end of menopause and its effects on the skin as we age. Please welcome her to Meno Mama's site today with lots of comment love!

How to change your skincare routine after menopause

As you are aware, menopause officially begins one year after your last period. During this shift, our body is going through hormonal changes and all the organs are changing too. One of them is the skin. I know it is easy to forget that the skin is an organ but it is! 
So what changes are exactly happening with the skin when you go through menopause? 
  1. The skin has a few different functions it performs, but a key one is protection from the outside world. The skin does this by producing a natural oil called sebum. Due to hormonal changes that occur as a result of menopause, as in higher levels of testosterone versus lower levels of estrogen, can result in your body producing thicker sebum. This sebum can be too thick for your pores and can cause a blockage and hence you could experience teen acne again. 

  1. This same shift in hormones can lead to excessive hair growth – particularly on your face. So you might start to notice hair growth on your face versus your hair! A peach fuzz or even dark hair.  

  1. Our body has the ability to keep itself moisturized known as the Natural Moisture Factor (NMF). As we go through menopause the NMF also starts to decrease. Also the number of days it takes our skin to shed shifts from every 28 days to every 45-60 days.  Hence during menopause, the skin’s ability to retain moisture is reduced, causing the skin to become dry and flaky, often red and irritated as well. 

  1. Another thing that changes is the amount of collagen produced. It starts to decrease. As a result, this can cause sagging, give you fine lines and wrinkles, lose fat under your skin; your overall skin elasticity drops.

  1. If in your younger days you were not proactive about using SPF, you might start to see some of the effects now such as age spots and larger areas of darker. Further, skin cancer and pre-cancerous skin growths also become more common. 

  1. Lastly, the pH of your skin changes too. Your skin becomes more sensitive and you are more likely to develop rashes and irritated skin. Further, if you have skin conditions, such as eczema or rosacea the change in the pH could make it worse. 
How to change your routine? 
Given all the changes above, which I can imagine can be overwhelming, how do you adjust your current routine for the best results: 
  1. Mental readjustment: So much of skincare and beauty is seen through the vanity and aesthetic lens. It is how we were brought up. But you must remember that, this is a normal process and that everyone goes through it. Holding on to looks for the sake of it might cause you to do procedures or use products that might end up causing more harm than good. There is beauty in aging gracefully. With that being said below are tips to also help on the physical side. 

  1. Applying SPF: If you haven’t started using SPF it is an absolute must. As you get older it becomes harder for the body to prevent the change in DNA that happens from sun exposure. You should opt for both sunblock and sunscreen as they protect you against different UV rays. Further, opt for the highest SPF you can get. The higher the better. Also, I must add, that even if you are just popping out for a few DON’T skip the SPF. Even just small exposure can affect the DNA in your skin cells. 

  1. Keep a healthy lifestyle: This is especially important for the dry skin. Of course, you want to apply a good moisturizer after you wash your face, but making sure you are eating well, stressing less, sleeping enough and drinking enough water will take your skin a long way. As I stated the skin is an organ, so you want the caring inside-out to be as strong as outside-in. And when it comes to stress, it is absolutely important to keep it at a bare minimum because it can trigger skin conditions such as eczema or rosacea to become worse. 

  1. Use a good, pure cleanser: This was true before menopause and it is just as true now. You want to use cleansers that have pure and honest ingredients. Because the skin is thinner and more sensitive now you want to avoid any reactions. Also, this is helpful if you are suffering from acne. Cleansers that are too harsh or drying can actually make your skin worse than helping it. Read the ingredients. I understand if the habit wasn’t there before it might be an adjustment but it is critical. I always say if you can’t pronounce, can’t understand it is or why it is there don’t buy it. 

Going through menopause requires not just a mental change but also a change in your habits to have the best skin you can. 


Shubhangini is the CEO & Founder of a skincare company called Feather & Bone. She launched the company after having a poor reaction to a face wash product when she was young.
She felt that as a consumer not only was her voice not getting heard but also consumers only got half of the story when it comes to caring for their skin.
She is on a mission to help women and men build successful skincare routines. And also for all of us to be #skinconfident. Be comfortable in your own skin.
Feather & Bone is the first company to sell 100% waterless and natural beauty products.
Try our waterless award-winning products: Homepage - Feather and Bone

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Are You Emotionally Intelligent? Here's How To Tell

Today on the blog I have guest Will Bail here to share some interesting facts on EI and EQ and how they are every bit as important as an IQ when it comes to success in life. Please welcome Will to Meno mama's site with lots of comment love!

Are You Emotionally Intelligent? Here's How To Tell

While there is always a great deal of talk about IQ or Intelligence Quotient, not as many people speak about a vital marker for human capability known as the EI-Emotional Intelligence or EQ-Emotional Quotient. Emotional intelligence and Emotional Quotients are not the same as brain IQ. While both significantly affect how a human is best able to handle life’s challenges, EI and EQ have a direct correlation on how well a person handles emotions and their ability to properly process emotions and utilize them to take proper actions during life’s most challenging circumstances.

While a new term in mental and behavioral studies, Emotional Intelligence and EQ have begun to garner a great deal of attention. First recognized in 1964, the term was not widely embraced until the late 1990s. However, since then, there have been several high-profile studies that have shown that EI and EQ can rank as high in importance with people as IQ when it comes to success in life. 

Recent studies have shown that people who test high on emotional intelligence tests such as those developed for EQ overall show a stronger resilience to emotional stressors and have better mental health and leadership skills. Author and science journalist Daniel Goleman who reintroduced the term into the mainstream in 1995 with a book on the subject, found that strong EI skills accounted for two-thirds of the skills necessary to be deemed a superior leader. This statistic surpassed even technical training and IQ as the single most significant trait characteristic needed to be an excellent leader.

Emotional Intelligence and Leadership

People with high emotional intelligence factors have a stronger capacity for stress and do well managing their emotions and adapting them to environments as they work to achieve their goals. Additionally, people with high emotional intelligence have a stronger capability to recognize not only their emotions and guide them appropriately but are also able to do the same for others. This, in part, is why it can affect leadership people so significantly.

Today, there are a wide variety of tests people can take to help them test their EQ and EI levels. There is also a myriad of training programs that can help people improve their emotional resilience and their emotional intelligence capacities. Centers like Genos International have become a hub for training people for improved managerial skills to enhance workplace environments.

While widely used by companies, these emotional intelligence training programs are also prized among other professionals who are striving to improve their marketability and capabilities. People who test well on EQ and EI tests generally show more empathetic mindful behavior as well as resiliency under pressure. People who work on enhancing these skills are often more interactive and proactive in their careers and in their personal lives.


Wilbert Bail is a link-builder and web developer at LD SEO Sydney. He has an adventurous mind but seldom travels as he would rather stay home and make the client's business website more visible on the internet. He likes techie stuff but won't buy any gadgets that are above $1000, hence no iPhone.

Monday, July 1, 2019

Diabetes and Menopause: Is it a hot flash or a low blood sugar? Or both?

     On the blog today I have LaurieAnn Scher, a Diabetes Educator who is here to spread awareness on diabetes and its relationship to menopause, and how to manage both. Please welcome her to Meno Mama's site with lots of comment love!

    Diabetes and Menopause: Is it a hot flash or a low blood sugar? Or both???

If menopause was not fun enough on its own, when you have diabetes, pre-diabetes or are at risk of developing diabetes, you enter an entirely new definition of fun. Menopause and the peri-menopausal years leading up to it are a time in the lives of women with diabetes that can be challenging because they feel more unpredictable. Women with larger amounts of body fat may go through menopause later (and/or more gradually (yippee!)) because fat makes estrogen levels drop more slowly.

Many of the menopausal symptoms that occur like night sweats, irritability, hot flashes, and dizziness are also symptoms of high or low blood sugar levels. It is very important for women with diabetes to check blood sugars and to speak with healthcare providers about these symptoms. Ignoring them as “just due to the change” can be unsafe and even life-threatening to someone with diabetes especially if they struggle with hypoglycemia unawareness (the condition where a person does not recognize the symptoms of low blood sugar).

During menopause and peri-menopause, body changes occur that may be mistaken for, or exacerbated by, diabetes. These include weight gain, difficulties with sexual arousal, sleep issues, moodiness, yeast infections and urinary tract infections (UTI’s). Changes in hormone levels, insulin sensitivity, and blood sugar fluctuations may cause weight gain, changes in mood and issues with sleep (independent of those lovely night sweats). The decrease in hormones may cause changes in vaginal tissue and if there is diabetic neuropathy in the nerves that innervate the vagina due to damage from years of elevated blood sugars, sexual arousal and satisfaction may be compromised. Medications in the SGLT2 class (canagliflozin, dapagliflozin, and empagliflozin) lead to higher sugar levels in excreted urine. This puts women on these medications at an even greater risk of developing yeast infections and UTI’s adding to the already elevated risk during menopause.

So what’s a girl with diabetes to do you ask? Get adequate rest, drink your water and be kind to your body! Watch your weight by eating well (cutting down on your carbohydrate intake helps - and I mean cut down, not out) and moving your body (we have an app for that). Remember that worrying about what is going on is not helpful. Stress negatively affects your blood sugars. Rest assured that once you are post-menopausal, you will likely have fewer blood fluctuations from hormones.

Moving your body during this period is important for many reasons. Exercise improves your insulin sensitivity which allows your body to use less insulin to get the job done (the job of moving glucose into the cells for energy). This means that less insulin is in your bloodstream and this allows your body to use fat for energy, not store it. High insulin levels lead to weight gain (especially around the middle) in menopausal women and people with pre-diabetes and diabetes. Exercise improves insulin sensitivity which allows your energy pathways to work better during and after exercise so less body fat is stored.

So find things that you like to do for physical activity and do them. Enjoy moving because it feels good and will help you manage through menopause more easily. And as I said above, we have an app for that with more educational information, a variety of trainers and fun exercises that you can do by yourself or with a friend on your computer or phone. As someone with diabetes, it will help keep you safe and will ensure that the physical activity that you perform will be effective and help you manage your diabetes. Visit us at

About LaurieAnn Scher, MS, RD, CDE

With over 30 years in practice, LaurieAnn has been drawn to new innovations. With a focus on helping people with diabetes challenge the status quo for their best outcomes, LaurieAnn allows person-centric solutions to guide how she functions as a Diabetes Educator. She currently serves as the President of the Connecticut Coordinating Body of the American Association of Diabetes Educators (AADE), on the DANA Editorial Board of the AADE, as the Leader of the Technology COI and on the leadership team for the Exercise Physiology Special Interest Group of the American Diabetes Association. LaurieAnn is the Chief Strategy Officer and Certified Diabetes Educator for Fitscript, creator of the GlucoseZone digital exercise therapeutic that provides exercise guidance for people with diabetes. LaurieAnn was awarded the 2019 Diabetes Educator of the year for the American Association of Diabetes Educators Connecticut Chapter. She holds an undergraduate degree in Clinical Nutrition from Cornell University and a Master’s Degree in Applied Physiology and Nutrition from Columbia University, Teachers College. She can be reached at


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