Well hello world – oh I do like saying that. Welcome to my new followers, emailers and commenters this week from Holland, Germany, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and yes, finally, the USA. It’s been really lovely to hear from you and I’m amazed by how many of you already shop at Clarks – there was me thinking it was a little British brand when it’s obviously already global. For those of you who have asked for a facility to subscribe by email, we’re on the case and just trying to activate the best plug in. I’ll let you know as soon as it’s live. So, what’s been happening at Midlifechic over the last few days? Well I’ve been hanging on to Summer’s last gasps, both literally and metaphorically speaking.

Saturday chic

On Saturday, as you know, I had the last of my university city visits with our eldest son. Does anybody else find that the intimacy of a long car journey encourages their teenagers to unburden themselves in a way that they just wouldn’t in any other situation? In the space of an hour and forty minutes I caught up with all of his news, horrors, hopes and dreams and I arrived in Leeds on a bit of a high, feeling like the omniscient mum that I used to be when he was 8 years old and I knew him inside out.

It was one of those glorious, golden Autumn days and I couldn’t help feeling a little nostalgic that these weekends with him were coming to an end. I know I’ve been complaining about them but as we were listening to a presentation on halls of residence it really struck me that he will be leaving me. How can that be? I’m sure those of you who are mums will understand the marvel that is your first born child. Like me you will have wondered at their every move, their every tiny achievement. But suddenly all those small achievements add up to one big one and that will be in 12 months’ time when he packs up everything that he has become and heads off into a world of his own.

I am so very proud of my incredible young man but I can still see the vulnerability of the child I know so well. There was a strange moment when they showed us into the empty student nightclub which still stank of beer and pheromones from the night before and I could feel that he was excited and terrified in equal measure. Him and me both. So, having accompanied me through the trauma of my youngest leaving primary school last year you can see what this next, much bigger journey is going to be!

Anyway, enough of that for now and on to maintaining midlife chic against all odds. Because Mr MC wasn’t with us I had to break the news to the dear boy that he would have to take a photo for the blog before we left Leeds. He eventually found a back street on the other side of the city where no-one could see us and reluctantly fired off a few shots. I’ve been deliberating over these boots for a while now, it’s taken me a while to get my eye around this season’s oxblood colour but then I saw this bag when I was buying my biker boots in Clarks and it sealed the deal:

Casual chic women over 40

Casual chic women over 40

I love the boots, they have the usual M&S Insolia cushioning and so were comfortable for walking in all afternoon. The pointed toe feels very on trend, as does the colour. I love the bag too. It has a detachable zip up lining and has room for everything. It doesn’t have a phone pocket but because of the colour it wasn’t a problem, I could easily find my purse and phone inside. I’m giving you extra shots per outfit today because some of you have asked for them.

Sunday chic

Back in God’s own county (Lancashire that is, not Yorkshire) on Sunday we went out for a family lunch to a new place that has opened in an ancient hostelry nearby. When the weather is like this, there is nowhere on earth that I’d rather live. There’s something about the golden glow of the old limestone buildings that is especially beautiful. It was warm but the sun is losing its strength so it was the perfect opportunity for me to wear my new RachelWears cardigan for the first time. Being very much a blazer girl this is a new look for me but I really liked the contrast between the coated black skinny jeans with biker boots and the carefully thought through design of the cardigan. I love the fact that the loose batwing structure goes into a ribbed sleeve which gives some definition to the otherwise flowing shape.

casual chic women over 40

casual chic women over 40

Lunch was followed by a stop on the way home for coffee and cake

casual chic women over 40

and then a bit of a walk to burn off the cake!

casual chic women over 40

I may look as though I’m gazing thoughtfully out to sea here but I’m laughing at these two crazy boys who were taking the mickey out of me:


casual chic women over 40 casual chic women over 40

And that was my weekend, the bittersweet joys of family life. If you’re waiting with bated breath to hear which uni my son has chosen…so am I! In the meantime it’s been lovely hearing from those of you who are on the same path, those of you who have been there before and those who have it looming. To borrow a favourite phrase from the Harry Potter movies “hold on tight…it’s going to be a bumpy ride.”

Oh and you know when I said I could still see the boy inside the man my son has become earlier – this was him with his brothers last night when I unwrapped the new coffee table that had arrived from John Lewis. I’ve always said that all you have to do to make boys happy is give them a stick, a ball or a box…one of the very many things I love about them! Keep in touch!

boys in a boat