Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

I've hung up my dress-for-success clothes, and pulled my domestic "genes" out of storage.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

How Old is "Sexy?"


How Old Is Sexy? --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes (Photo by Geoffrey Wade; artwork by Ms. Toody Goo Shoes)
Photo by Geoffrey Wade; Artwork by Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

Do you still feel sexy? 

I'm sitting here in my bathrobe shoving popcorn into my mouth at the moment, so um, no, sexy isn't quite the adjective I'd use to describe myself right now.

But sometimes... SOMETIMES...

"I'm sexy and I know it!
When I walk into that spot, yeah 
this is what I see, ok 
everybody stops and they starin' at me."

OK, maybe not that sexy. LMFAO! (get it?)

But every now and then...like once every four blue moons...I look in the mirror and say, "Hot Damn, girl, you still got it"...or something that is vaguely reminiscent of my former "it." 

I might even still turn a head or two...
in the "60 to Dead" demographic, but hey, heads are heads.

So when do we become "un-sexy?" Or don't we?

My friend, Jacky O'Shaughnessy, whom I've known for 30 years, seems to be getting sexier as she gets older...and, at age 62, has become a worldwide phenomenon...

...as a lingerie model!

"How Old Is Sexy?" This 62-year old sure is !  --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes (Photo by Marsh Brady, American Apparel)
Photo by Marsha Brady, courtesy of American Apparel

Now, THAT's what you call "I'm too sexy for my shirt!"

The tag line for the American Apparel lingerie ad is...

"Sexy Has No Expiration Date"

Don't you love that???

Jacky has been modeling for American Apparel for just about 2 years. Not just undies...in fact, most times, she is fully clothed. 

If ever there was a story to prove that dreams can come true an any age, this is it. 

"How Old Is Sexy?"  --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes (Photo by Marsh Brady, American Apparel)
Photo by Marsha Brady, courtesy of American Apparel

Jacky and I met back in 1983. I was working at a television network, and we hired a temp to do secretarial work. In walks this 6-foot tall woman, wearing a man's coat, men's galoshes, men's glasses, a baggy dress, no makeup, and her hair up in a kerchief. My co-worker and I exchanged concerned glances... WHO did the agency send us? Even Jacky says, "I looked like I just got off a boat on Ellis Island." 

Just before lunch, she excused herself to the Ladies' Room,saying something about going on an audition.  When she came back, our jaws dropped. It took us a minute to realize this was our temp. We had witnessed a Cinderella moment.

She had popped in her contacts, put on some makeup, done her hair and changed her clothes. Jacky was...

Stunning.


l"How Old Is Sexy?"  --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes (Photo courtesy of Jacalyn O'Shaughnessy)
Photo Courtesy of Jacalyn O'Shaughnessy

She ended up working for us for four years, and we were crushed when she decided to move to LA to actively pursue her acting career.  She did land some great roles (you can watch her 5-minute reel here) --Moonlighting, Night Court, Growing Pains, to name a few. Check out her professional website here. 

"How Old Is Sexy?"  --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes (Photo courtesy of Jacalyn O'Shaughnessy)
Photo Courtesy of Jacalyn O'Shaughnessy

Even after 24 years, LA never "clicked" for Jacky.  She missed her friends, family, and the change of seasons. So we weren't totally surprised (truth be told, we were secretly thrilled!) when she moved back to New York City in December 2011, just before her 60th birthday.  She just couldn't see starting a new decade in a city that never felt like home.

"How Old Is Sexy?"  --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes (Photo courtesy of Jacalyn O'Shaughnessy)
Jacky and her dog, Wolfie (2004); Photo Courtesy of Jacalyn O'Shaughnessy
As she was pondering a move back East, Jacky was also thinking about "next steps" in her career, and thought she'd like to try "mature modeling." Ironically, after all those years in LA, Jacky was back in NY for about 5 minutes a few weeks when she was "discovered" as a model.

"I was sitting on a stoop in the West Village late one night,  smoking a cigarette (I had one at night to help me fall asleep), when a woman, who was about to hail a cab, said, "You look very regal, sitting there smoking that cigarette."

Jacky's reply -- "I don't think many people would agree with you," meaning that most people wouldn't think smoking was "regal."  But as the woman got into the cab, she said, "YOU are beautiful." 


"How Old Is Sexy?"  --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes (Photo by Geoffrey Wade)
Photo by Geoffrey Wade
A few weeks later, Jacky was sitting at the bar in a restaurant in the West Village, when a woman who looked familiar walked in. It was the "taxi" woman.  She asked Jacky to join her for dinner and the two talked non-stop for hours. At one point she asked Jacky what she did. "I am an actress, and I'd like to try "mature modeling," having no idea that her dinner companion, Marsha Brady, was the Creative Director at American Apparel.

Nor did Marsha reveal herself as such, until a few weeks later, when she called Jacky for the first of several photo shoots...and the now "renowned" lingerie shots were taken. American Apparel, who is known for their provocative and artistic advertising campaigns, got tremendous response from this shot, as well as some critical comments...but Jacky says that during the photo shoot, she was told to "just relax," so she sat in the same position she's been comfortable in since she was two years old, with her legs...as we would say in Yiddish... "oysgeshprait" -- or spread apart.

"How Old Is Sexy?"  --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes (photo courtesy of Jacalyn O'Shaughnessy)
Photo Courtesy of Jacalyn O'Shaughnessy
Jacky and I had dinner a few weeks ago, along with some other friends. (I cannot believe that I am posting that old photo of me -- but I'm "taking one for the blog post").

Amy and Jacky...Then and Now
She was telling us (modestly, I might add) about the online attention she is getting... Elle Magazine, Fashionista, Huffington Post, NY Daily News, Perez Hilton, as well as coverage all around the world....Vogue Italy, The Guardian (UK), France, Vietnam, Chile, Norway...There are way too many to name. She's pretty popular on Pinterest and Instagram, too.  

Not only that...she's been contacted by several very popular TV talk shows...in fact, she's going to be on the Today Show in a couple of weeks!
  
Has it gone to her head? Nahhh! She's still the same down-to-earth person she was when she walked into our office all those years ago. Better dressed, yes, but still "our Jacky" with the incredible wit. I'll have you know that she is a very gifted writer, and we keep trying to convince her to start a blog, or write a book. DO IT, JACKY!

So what does it feel like to go viral? Jacky says that she's "surprised" when she's recognized...like when the guys in her local deli pulled up a photo of her on Instagram, and said, "Is this you?"  

Surprised? Uh, Jacky, I think your silver mane and 6-foot frame kind of make you uniquely noticeable, make-up or not.

"How Old Is Sexy?"  --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes (Photo by Marsh Brady, American Apparel)
Photo by Marsha Brady, courtesy of American Apparel

But her favorite "fame" story is when a waiter in a local restaurant told her he showed Jacky's lingerie photos to his wife, and said, "This is what I want in 38 years." What he meant was, he wanted them to age like Jacky has, and hoped that when they hit their 60's, they'd have Jacky's energy and vibrancy. 

I guess that definitively answers my question of...

 "How old is sexy?" 

"How Old Is Sexy?"  --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes (Photo by Geoffrey Wade)
Photo by Geoffrey Wade
It's as old as we damn please.






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83 comments:

  1. great post ~ love the dog too ~ Sexy is all in the 'mind' and within the soul ~ Beautiful ~ xoxo

    artmusedog and carol (a creative harbor)

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  2. What an amazing post!! Thank you for the reminder that there is no age limit on beauty. That sexiness is a life long goal. Not something that goes away when you turn 30. If you have a moment, I would LOVE for you to link this to my Monday Morning MakeUp Madness Party!! I think my readers (who are mostly moms) would love this reminder. Please and Thank You
    -Kat
    http://www.confessionsoftheperfectmom.com/2014/04/07/monday-morning-makeup-madness-party-9/

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    1. Thank you, Kat! I totally agree that ANY age can be sexy! I hopped on over and linked up.

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  3. Truly inspiring, beautiful at any age.

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    1. So true, Cynthia! We just need to keep it front of mind!

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  4. And you my friend, are beautiful in your "then" and "now!"

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    1. Awww. thank you so much! That was when I got one of the worst haircuts of my life, and I still cringe at that photo, lol!

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  5. That was fun to read. We are only as old as we feel, right? That's what I keep telling myself. Seriously though, it's awesome to see how many people really look great in their sixties!

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    1. It's true, Michelle, age is just a number. It's how we feel that counts. I think of how my grandparents looked in their 60's, and it's nothing like the 60 year olds I know now!

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  6. Great post and I turn 59 this year and feel rather good especially after a recent weight loss.

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    1. You and I are the same age, Kim! I'm glad you feel good about yourself!

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  7. Well, I just turned 70 and my guy is 82 and I can tell you sometimes it's like we were still both in our 20s! A few days after my birthday I started going back to the gym. Life continues to be fun.

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    1. I hope I can say the same thing as you when I turn 70, Teddee! Good for you for getting back to the gym. It's never too late. That's what I keep telling my hubs.

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  8. I rarely feel sexy... But weirdly enough, it happens as often now than when I was younger... And I do hope that in a few years, I'll be as sexy as your friend, who gives us such a nice example.

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    1. As long as it hasn't lessened, that's a good thing, Magali! I think we can look still look great as we get older!

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  9. LOVED reading all about your friend! She's fabulous and so are you: I like your recent portraits even better than the older, i.e. younger ones. Thank you for sharing this uplifting life story!
    Cheers,
    Merisi

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    1. Thank you, Merisi, you made my day! That older photo of me is right after I got the worst haircut of my life - I can't believe I even posted it! It is uplifting, isn't it?

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  10. This was so inspirational!! Oh, my goodness - loved reading it. I have always thought that being sexy was an attitude not a look. However, I have always seen myself as the "girl-next-door" type. Obviously, Jackie is not the "girl-next-door" type!! Thank you for sharing her story - what fun!! Let us know, if she starts that blog...

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    1. I'm so glad you enjoyed it, Diane! I totally agree that sexy is an attitude...I've seen some very sexy people who weren't necessarily good looking, but there was just something about them. I really want Jacky to start a blog!

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  11. Hi Amy,

    Your post is quite timely! It seems, lately, my FEMALE friends and I have been asking each other this very question. I stress, 'female' because I'm almost certain that the male population would have a completely different answer! Anyway, wonderful post! Jacky and HER red headed friend, are both ageless beauties, inside and out!

    Have a great week!

    Poppy

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    1. Thanks, Poppy, I'm blushing! I think you are right about the men. Most of my friends look awesome, even as they are aging. 60 is the new 30!

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  12. She is beautiful indeed! I love it and I think 60 is pretty darned good (spoken from personal experience) I didn't realize you worked for TV...So did I -back in the 70's . I worked for NBC and went to NBC's school of advertising which was , at that time, at Rockefeller Center.

    LOVE ALL the photos and I went over and read the article on her. She is sumthin'! xo Diana

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    1. And I had no idea that you worked at NBC! 60 is so much younger than it was when my grandparents turned sixty! For one thing, no one colored their hair, lol! Glad you enjoyed, and yes, she is sumthin!

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  13. I often think, in this country, that the opposite sex doesn't look at anyone over 30, but I am so glad that may be changing. She so proves that you can be beautiful at all ages.
    Sherry

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    1. I think as the boomers are hitting 60's, there's a different vibe. I do thing it's changing...at least I hope so, Sherry!

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  14. What a great post and read, very inspiring! True beauty always comes from within and works its way outward, as is obvious here since beauty has no age.

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    1. I'm with you on that one...Inner beauty really can make anyone shine!

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  15. Great story! Your friend Jacky is quite beautiful. It's nice to know that not all models are so young.

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    1. Thanks, Kelly! I think that older models are becoming more prevalent, as the baby boomers age. I hope so, anyway!

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  16. Oh I just loved this post !!!
    Your girlfriend's gorgeous - AND sexy - we North Americans are late to the game with this type of stuff - it's about time we start embracing it.
    LOVE American Apparel too ( created by a Canadian - have to get my plugs in whenever I can don't you know - and actually from right here - Montreal ! )
    So.................when do we get to see the beautiful Amy in lingerie on the blog?
    xxx

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    1. Thanks, Suzan! And yes, we need to embrace beauty in older people! You wanna see me in lingerie? Hahahahahahaha! OMG, that's a good one!

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  17. I love this post. Your friend is gorgeous. I am going to hop on over to Pinterest to look at some of her pins. How wonderful that she feels back at home in NY and has found a new career. What an inspiration.

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    1. She is so happy to be back in NY, and we are happy she's here, too. I wish some agency would snap her up!

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  18. Thanks for sharing Jacky's story. It sounds like she's become an "overnight sensation" in an industry that she's been working in for years. How old is sexy is a good question. I've been taking Zumba classes and am one of the older gals in the room usually. I've been married for 4 years longer than the instructor has been alive. Sometimes, I don't feel so sexy when my aging knees don't let me do the pole-dancing type deep squats that the other gals pull off, but I remind myself that my man still finds me sexy.

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    1. If your man finds you sexy, that's all that matters, Michele!

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  19. How inspiring. Jacky is gorgeous and I am so happy she pursued her dreams. Me, feeling sexy, ummm no, menopause is making me fat and cranky lol. I will get past it though.

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    1. You'll get past it, and you will feel SEXY, Debbie! You may not feel sexy, but I but other people think you are!

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  20. Great post!! Never too old to look reeeeally good!
    Mary Alice

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    1. It's very true, Mary Alice! We should all be inspired to know that we can look great no matter what our age!

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  21. Great post -- as I get older, I realize that beauty is indeed in the eye of the beholder. xo

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    1. I agree, Nancy. And hopefully, we are the "beholder" and can see ourselves as beautiful!

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  22. I remember seeing these ads from American Apparel and thinking it's about time someone tapped into this market! My mom is in her early 60s and has never looked better. She has a confidence about the way she looks that never did before. It shows in the way she dresses and carries herself. I think that is the key to looking and feeling sexy!

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    1. So true, Jen...I think this market is a gold mine, with all of the aging baby boomers. I think sexy is an attitude, and we can maintain that no matter how old we get!

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  23. Wow, she is amazing! I always tell myself that I will kick myself in 10 years if I beat myself for how I look now. Sexy is not just in the body, it's in the mind :-)

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    1. Sometimes I think the older I get, the better I look. OK, minus a few pounds and wrinkles, but as long as in our minds we believe we are still attractive, then we are.

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  24. Dear Amy, I beautiful and very inspiring story. Thank you for sharing it. Blessings, Catherine xo

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  25. Hi Amy, this is my first visit to your lovely blog and I want to say I am so happy that you are celebrating the fact that you can still be sexy at any age! Your beautiful and inspiring friend is the perfect example. I am very close to her age - 58 now, and I can honestly say that I still feel that I can pull off 'sexy' every now and again and I certainly feel much younger than my age. I think that it is wonderful that society is recognizing that there are no limits to being youthful and young at heart. I am still married to my high school sweetheart and he still thinks I am 'sexy'. Yes, I am a lucky woman....Thank you for sharing your beautiful friend's story. New follower. :) xo Karen

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    1. Thanks so much for visiting, Karen, and for following! I really appreciate that. Yes, I am your age, and I do feel like I can still feel good about how I look. You are a lucky woman, yes!

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  26. Wow, really wonderful writing. I really enjoyed getting to read this.

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  27. Just when you think nothing significant is going to happen... It happens. So happy for your friend. Wishing her better things be in her future.

    Madonna
    MakeMineLemon

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    1. It's true...never say never. I always say that who knows what wonderful thing can happen tomorrow!

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  28. What an utterly fabulous post. Your friend is a stunner, and just goes to show that beauty has no age barriers but the ones we impose. Love it!

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    1. We all need to learn to not be so hard on ourselves. Glad you enjoyed the post!

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  29. I can't say that I've ever felt sexy....cute but not sexy. There are a lot of older people who still look sexy! Sexy doesn't age...it's your perception of what is sexy that does.

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  30. That was the best "shot in the arm" this soon to be 59 year old could have gotten!! I still feel sexy. I received a compliment in the grocery store last week from the gentleman behind me in line. He said I don't mean to be forward but you dress very nicely...made me feel like I can still be noticed :) You wrote about Jacky so beautifully.... Thank you for sharing your friend her with us. And I would agree you still "have it"!

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    1. Oh, that would make my day, June! It still feels good to be noticed! I'm your age, and believe me, I needed a shot in the arm, myself!

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  31. Saw this post at Common Ground Inspiration party, and I'm so glad I did! Thanks for sharing the inspirational story.

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    1. So glad you found it! Thank you for stopping by, and for leaving a comment. I'm glad you enjoyed the post!

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  32. Wow! Great post...very inspirational! Love this story..

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    1. It's a good life lesson, isn't it, Corinne? It's never too late for something fabulous to happen!

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  33. Sorry I am very behind on my email, what an awesome and inspiring story. Yippee for Jackie and what a beauty. I couldn't imagine just sitting there having a cig and someone walking up and this just happening. How fantastic is that and makes me embrace turning 49 in a few weeks.

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    1. Happy 49th, Cynthia! Glad you were inspired. Jacky inspires me, too! We need to remember that age is just a number, but if we still feel young inside, that's a wonderful thing.

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  34. Hi there, I am coming over from the link party at confessions of the perfect mom and congrats on the feature! I love this post that you did and I think that it's true that it's how you feel on the inside and you can still look and feel beautiful at any age! Have a great day and week and Happy Easter.
    Julie at Julie's Lifestyle

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    1. Thank you so much, Julie! I was thrilled to have this featured! I agree - beauty is ageless! Thanks for stopping by.

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  35. I loved this post! Very enjoyable and inspiring! Thank you!

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  36. Absolutely fabulous! I have tears in my eyes, and I am NOT an emotional person. Jacky is exceptionally beautiful, but I believe every woman can maintain her "sexy" throughout her life. Thanks so much for sharing this with the Let's Get Real party. I am pinning it to our group board and tweeting it.

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    1. Also, this is going to be my featured post on this week's Let's Get Real party.

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    2. Thank you so much, Gaye, for your lovely comment, the tweet and the feature! I really appreciate it!

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  37. Thanks. As someone who's about to enter her 6th decade, I needed this. Every enjoyable read.

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    1. Glad to help out, Renee! You will still be fabulous in decade # 6!

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  38. Fascinating post - she is quite beautiful -I do appreciate you sharing with Home and Garden Thursday,
    Kathy

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  39. I missed this before - this is fantastic, Amy! (and yes, "LMFAO" - hahaaaa. Priceless). Jacky is gorgeous. I hope I look that sexy when I am 60!!

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