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Senior news: Get help with tackling those technology troubles

Technology is constantly changing and, as most of us would agree, much too fast. But the upside is that the technology is becoming more intuitive and responsive. If you have any “techie” questions, you can drop in at the Mid-Columbia Senior Center at 9 a.m. or 1 p.m. on the first Wednesday of each month. Or, if you have an iPad or iPhone, I will attempt to answer your questions. I can often help or at least give you some direction before you ask for professional help.

March 4, 2015 7:29 a.m. read more..


Senior News: The art of discovering your inner Van Gogh

Many of you may agree with Fran Lebowitz who said, “Very few people possess true artistic ability. It is therefore both unseemly and unproductive to irritate the situation by making an effort. If you have a burning, restless urge to write or paint, simply eat something sweet and the feeling will pass.”

February 19, 2015 2:18 p.m. read more..


Senior news: Steps you can take to limit telemarketer calls

Do you still receive unsolicited calls from telemarketers trying to sell you something you don’t want or need, such as security systems, satellite television or a new remedy for diabetes? They are often scams but can also be calls from telemarketers representing Fortune 500 companies. And there are steps you can take to limit them.

February 11, 2015 5:14 a.m. read more..
  

Senior news: Communication is key factor for better health outcomes

Do you remember when a visit to the doctor was for an easily diagnosed and treated ailment, such as measles, ear aches and sore throats? The visit was not for complex health issues, such as broken hips, knee replacements, urinary infections, fainting spells or heart problems? Life is so much more exciting these days!

January 15, 2015 9:27 a.m. read more..


Senior News: Ten tips for a healthier life

Last week I shared twenty tips I’ve learned over the last eight years about aging well. I hope you found them useful, but I imagine some of you might have thought they were just a bunch of hooey. (Does anyone use the word “hooey” anymore besides myself and Dick Cheney?)

January 8, 2015 5:57 a.m. read more..


Senior news: How to live the rest of your life to the fullest

This is the seventh year I have had the opportunity to wish all of you a Happy New Year. When I started writing this column, I had no idea what the next eight years would bring, but over those years attending state and national conferences, listening to the Mid-Columbia Senior Center’s Tuesday lectures, preparing for this column, and particularly listening to the amazing “elders” at the center, I have learned more than I ever could have imagined.

December 31, 2014 6:30 a.m. read more..


Senior news: Don’t take for granted the simple joys of everyday life

I’m not fond of these winter doldrums in The Dalles: grey overcast skies with a few days of sunshine, just to tease us that better days are ahead. And although I may not like them, I find these gloomy days are necessary, because without them I wouldn’t really appreciate the warm T-shirt days with blue skies. And isn’t that the way it is in our daily lives? All the challenges and difficulties, the missteps and losses, remind us not to take for granted the simple joys and comforts we can experience every precious day.

December 16, 2014 4:33 p.m. read more..
  

Senior news: Don’t fall for the Grandparent Scam

You receive a call from your grandson. He is in trouble in a foreign country and he needs your help, now! He sounds desperate and you want to help, so you send him a Western Union money order. And you never hear from him again or see your money.

November 4, 2014 6:11 p.m. read more..


Senior News: Lots of events at the senior center

I usually try to avoid being too focused on the Mid-Columbia Senior Center, but this week is going to be an exception because of these opportunities: Wednesday, Sept. 18: Passport to Happiness event from 1-2:30 p.m. Lauren Kraemer, OSU Extension Family and Community Health specialist, will demonstrate several healthy dishes.

September 16, 2014 1:45 p.m. read more..
  

Senior news: Even knowing the benefits of moving, it will be hard

Have you had to move from a place that was your home for many years? Rita and I are considering selling our house where we have lived 28 years. The children have moved away, and it is just too darn big. (My perfect size for a house is one small enough, I only needed to plug in the vacuum cleaner once.)

August 19, 2014 12:47 p.m. read more..


Senior news: It’s never too late

I was reading an online post from a young person asking if, at the age of 30, she still had time to make something of her life. When I read it I wanted to say to her, “WHAT ARE YOU THINKING! It is never too late. At the age of 60, 70, 80 or even 90!”

August 6, 2014 12:04 p.m. read more..
 

Senior news: Being realistic isn't giving up

Do we always have to act our age? Do we really have to stop dressing up for Halloween, or drawing with watercolors and crayons? Or telling corny jokes we have all heard several times before (but still find amusing)? If you are 92, should you really climb under the house when your wife is afraid she will have to call 911 to pull you out? (I don’t think you really want to be the opening segment on the Channel 6 news: “Stubborn Geezer in over his head.”)

July 22, 2014 1:08 p.m. read more..


Senior News: Enjoying the climb through your senior years

I came across this quote by Mitch Abom, journalist and writer best known for “Tuesdays with Morrie.” “It’s funny. I met a man once who did a lot of mountain climbing. I asked him which was harder, ascending or descending? He said without a doubt descending, because ascending you were so focused on reaching the top, you avoided mistakes. The backside of a mountain is a fight against human nature,” he said. “You have to care as much about yourself on the way down as you did on the way up.”

June 10, 2014 1 p.m. read more..
   

Senior News: Healthy habits are for living better not just longer

How many times do you hear of new products or research findings that will help you live longer? Take this pill or that, eat less fat and more fiber, hit the gym, and lift those weights, etc. But many folks ignore these reports because they believe when their time is up, there ain’t nothing you can do about it. So why change old habits? Que Sera, Sera, whatever will be, will be.

April 8, 2014 3:33 p.m. read more..
   

Senior News: Spring brings new activities for seniors

Is it beginning to feel like spring? We are getting closer with the first day of spring, or the vernal equinox as they say in the more educated circles, arriving March 20. And just like flowers sprouting in the gardens, and ants climbing on the kitchen counters, the Mid-Columbia Senior Center is busy with activities.

March 11, 2014 9:21 p.m. read more..


Senior News: Now is the time to do what you always wanted

Life can be broadly defined by three stages: the years preparing for work and family, when you were told what you had to do; followed by years of working and raising a family, when you did what you thought you should do. And now, this third chapter when you are no longer working, or at least working less, and watching your grandchildren grow, a time to do what you have always wanted to do, no longer constrained by time or self-imposed limitations.

March 4, 2014 11:45 a.m. read more..


Senior News: Find your way through the legal world

Don’t you wish the American legal system was simple, understandable, and inexpensive? But doesn’t it seem like the laws are becoming even more complex, and in the name of clarity and fairness more ambiguous and contradictory, to the point where you just want to scream “I give up!”

February 25, 2014 1:29 p.m. read more..
 

Senior News: It’s important to be prepared for a winter emergency

I hope you have dug out of the snow by the time you read this. But as I was shoveling snow — for the third time — my mind wondered back to the days of childhood when snow was a gift from the heavens. It provided children with a chance to build snow caves, play Capture the Flag, and drink hot chocolate with marshmallows instead of going to school.

February 11, 2014 11:53 a.m. read more..
 

Senior News: Mid-Columbia offers many organizations for senior support

There are many organizations in the Mid-Columbia supporting older adults, but there are very few whose only mission is the health and wellbeing of older adults. One of those organizations is the Area Agency on Aging (AAA) operated under the Mid-Columbia Council of Governments serving a five county region: Wheeler, Gilliam, Sherman, Wasco and Hood River counties.

January 28, 2014 12:56 p.m. read more..
  

Senior News: Passport to happiness calendar now available

The free 2014 Passport to Happiness Calendar is now available and if you don’t receive one in the mail in the next week, you can stop by the Center or OSU Extension office at CGCC and pick one up. And thanks to the suggestions from many folks, the 2014 calendar has a few changes to make it even better than 2013.

January 7, 2014 1:25 p.m. read more..
  

Senior News: Stop focusing on what you don’t have and be grateful

Don’t you sometimes just wish things were different? There are days when it is a struggle just to keep moving and your head above water. And when that happens it is easy to focus on what we don’t have (and during this season we are bombarded with all the material things we don’t have) instead of what we do — and get stuck riding a downward spiral into the sticky goop of self-pity.

December 3, 2013 12:20 p.m. read more..
 

Senior News: The best is yet to come

I don’t want to run as fast as I once did, or even look as ruggedly handsome — when all the girls I asked were too intimidated by my good looks to go out with me. (Wasn’t it Mark Twain who said when you’re young, you remember anything, whether it happened or not, but when you’re older, you only remember the latter. But I do vividly remember the lack of dates.

November 19, 2013 12:59 p.m. read more..


Senior News: Volunteering is the backbone of a strong community

After retiring, many folks spend their extra time volunteering - which provides the flexibility to travel and engage in other personal pursuits, while making meaningful contributions such as mentoring young children, serving on church councils or delivering Meals-on-Wheels, the unselfish work of volunteers is the backbone of strong, healthy communities.

November 12, 2013 12:39 p.m. read more..


Senior News: Start exploring new forms of self-expression

Whether it is painting a sunset illuminating the Columbia Gorge, writing a poem expressing the indescribable joys of grandchildren, or creating a walking stick with a hand carved handle attached to a discarded monopod, these are all creative acts: fashioning something unique and personal out of the ordinary.

November 5, 2013 2:29 p.m. read more..


Senior News: November is more than falling leaves and cooler temperatures

November is a couple of steps away. And if you live in the Northern Wasco County Parks and Recreation District, you know November is more than falling leaves and cooler temperatures. It is your chance to vote on the proposed pool bond which will replace the current pool - first built in 1938 and substantially rebuilt in 1990-91.

October 29, 2013 11:53 a.m. read more..


Senior News: Social engagement is better for a healthy lifestyle

Loneliness has been described as “when one door is closed, but the ‘other one’ has yet to open.” Or “an ‘inner worm’ that gnaws at the heart.” It can visit at any time in our lives. But circumstances and events we encounter as we get older make it easier to be more withdrawn, alone and less likely to be involved in social activities and organizations: the loss of a life partner or difficulties with our hearing, seeing or walking.

October 22, 2013 1:36 p.m. read more..
 

Senior News: Reverse mortgages can be a useful tool for some

If you are struggling to pay your bills as the cost of living constantly increases — and yet you have paid off your house, which you purchased 40 years ago for $35,000 and is now worth four times that much, you are one of thousands of American older adults who are income poor but “house” rich.

October 8, 2013 12:25 p.m. read more..


Senior News: Medicare open enrollment between Oct. 15-Dec. 7

This Friday night from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m., Meals-on-Wheels and the Mid-Columbia Senor Center invite you to their 3rd Annual Baby Back Rib Dinner sponsored by The Springs at Mill Creek. With the financial support of the Springs and with several other small and large donations, all the expenses for the dinner are covered, so every penny from every ticket sold goes directly to Meals-on-Wheels and Senior Center — split evenly.

October 1, 2013 2:19 p.m. read more..


Senior News: There are steps you can take to prevent falls

Falls can be more than an inconvenience. Among older adults, falls are the leading cause of both fatal and nonfatal injuries. And according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) one out of three adults aged 65 or older falls each

September 24, 2013 2:48 p.m. read more..
 

Senior News: Sharing the ‘Prayer of an Anonymous Abbess’

Because of the Labor Day Weekend, I had fewer days to collect my thoughts for this column, so I decided to kick the ball down the field until next week and instead share with you some sagely advise I found called the “Prayer of an Anonymous Abbess.” (But I do it with some reservation. I have this notion in the back of my head that I have shared it before. But then I shouldn’t be too overly concerned — there’s a lot of stuff I’ve discovered in the back of my head that should be ignored!)

September 3, 2013 11:40 a.m. read more..


Senior News: Pledge encourages us to stay strong and confident

Because we live in a society that reflects the cultural values of independence, youthfulness, and productivity, often the elderly are either negatively portrayed as frail, decrepit and burdensome “old” folks — ignored, stored away and forgotten. Or on the opposite extreme “super seniors” accomplishing age defying feats of strength and daring.

August 6, 2013 1:23 p.m. read more..
 

Senior News: Surviving the highs and lows of summer

As I am trying to stay cool in my air conditioned bedroom like a kangaroo rat in its desert burrow; with my laptop computer sitting appropriately on my lap, I am wondering what to write about this week. And then, like a sweaty palm slapping me across my face, it hits me: the dangers of overexposure to summer heat!

July 2, 2013 12:42 p.m. read more..
 

Senior News: Driving and technology set a different reaction time

Automobiles have changed over the years, from push button transmissions, metal dash boards, and cigarette lighters to computerized engines, backup cameras and remote car keys (so you can lock your car from your living room and accidently set off the car alarm as you fumble with your car keys!) And so have traffic rules, driving conditions, and, although I hate to admit it, so have we.

June 19, 2013 8:54 a.m. read more..
 

Grandparents play important role in lives of their grandchildren

Ah, grandchildren. For many, grandchildren have been the joy of their lives. For my parents, who retired between Florida and the mountains of North Carolina, they never visited me after my wife and I moved to Oregon. (I guess 18-plus years raising me was enough!) But once my son Andrew was born, it didn’t take them long to say goodbye Ashville, N.C., and hello The Dalles — living in our small basement apartment and inviting Andrew downstairs every afternoon for Sesame Street. You could tell who they were interest in seeing!

May 28, 2013 11:46 a.m. read more..
 

Medicare unavailable for long term patients

How do you travel to the store, your church or to visit friends? Do you ride a bike or a four wheel electric scooter? Or do you careen around town on a Vespa like Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn in the movie “Roman Holiday?”

May 7, 2013 2:10 p.m. read more..
 

I’m no longer the young whipper-snapper I use to be

I’m trying to hold back the slow, methodical footsteps of time. I do all the right things: I wear a pedometer so I know when I reach my 10,000 steps a day; I keep mentally stimulated playing brain games and learning new languages; I now eat whole grains and a variety of fruits and vegetables; and I try to stay socially active by dating numerous women. (No Rita, I am just kidding!).

April 23, 2013 12:46 p.m. read more..


Senior News: Thank you to all for a successful membership drive

Now that the Mid-Columbia Senior Center has completed its Spring Membership Drive, I would like to thank everyone who either renewed their membership or became a member for the first time. We surpassed 300 members, the largest number in the last several years, and it is all because of you! The 2013 Membership Campaign will conclude in July, before the center’s annual membership meeting, and the goal is still four hundred members.

April 16, 2013 1:01 p.m. read more..
   

Spring is just around the corner: what are your plans?

As we age, our natural social support system diminishes: friends and loved ones move or pass away and there are fewer opportunities to make new friends. And without this web of caring friends and family, when there is an emergency or crisis, there are fewer places to turn to for assistance.

March 19, 2013 12:18 p.m. read more..

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