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FALL 2018

Time to Take Charge A Dementia Diagnosis Sparks Action

10 GIFTS

Wisdom for a Grandson

Raising Grandkids It’s on the Rise

TASTEFULLY YOURS Holiday Treats Made Easy

TRUSTWORTHY CHARITIES Tips on Making Smart Donations

PROSTATE CANCER Primed for a Fight


It’s your thing! Do what you want to do!

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MESSAGE from the publisher

Optimism, Joy, and Curiosity I don’t know about you, but I sure am tired of all the fear and loathing that’s been going around lately. Fear of the other, fear of loss, fear for our country, fear of irrelevance, fear about getting older. “This dim, despairing view of the world is not unrealistic; it is just unbalanced…The negatives are amplified, and the positives are ignored,” says brain-health educator Michael Patterson in his story Grandchildren He l p Ac c e nt u a t e t h e Positive. “We take the good stuff for granted and fail to appreciate the great good fortune we have to be alive and healthy in modernday America.” I have the great good fortune of being a grandparent. It’s a role many enjoy as we age: one where our experience is appreciated and valued, as is our

willingness and ability to lend a hand— or, increasingly due to loss or tragedy, to step in as a parent to our grandchildren. In this issue we celebrate the optimism, joy, and curiosity that grandchildren bring to our lives; we look at the world through their eyes, we explore the gifts and advice we can give them, and we reaffirm our importance and value as older family members. We also acknowledge the benefits grandparents and grandchildren receive from playing together, traveling together, or sharing a passion or hobby. Not a grandparent? We talk with childless and grandchildless adults, too, and discover that you don’t need grandchildren to age with joy and verve. As the holidays approach, I challenge you to rediscover your own child within, to remember that you have value, and to freely express your delight at the simple joys that surround us. Simple joys like climbing into the seat of a jungle-gym rocket ship all by yourself! Off to the moon you go, the world is your oyster—that is—with your Nana there showing you where to place your hands and feet. That’s what we do as grandparents. We show up and we show how. Isn’t it wonderful!

“In this issue we celebrate the optimism, joy, and curiosity that grandchildren bring to our lives”

OU R VI SI ON 3rd Act Magazine endeavors to inform, inspire, and entertain older adults. Our stories and articles challenge worn-out perceptions of aging and offer a dynamic new vision: Aging is good, let’s celebrate and embrace this stage of life, and let’s age together with confidence. PU B LI SH E RS Victoria Starr Marshall David Marshall EDITOR Victoria Starr Marshall COPY EDITOR Julie Fanselow ART DIRECTOR Philip Krayna WEBSITE Philip Krayna, Gayle Fox ADVERTISING Victoria Starr Marshall, Carolyn Hultz DISTRIBUTION & CIRCULATION David Marshall COVE R PH OTOG R APHY Teri Thomson Randall WRITE TO US 3rd Act Magazine wants to hear from you! Email your comments, ideas, and questions to info@3rdActMag.com or mail to 81 Canal Lane, Brinnon, WA 98320 3rd Act Magazine is published quarterly by Oshi Publishing, LLC. The opinions, advice or statements expressed by contributing writers do not reflect those of the editors, the publishers, or of 3rd Act Magazine. No part of this magazine may be reproduced without prior consent of the publisher. It is your responsibility to evaluate the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, opinion, advice, or other content contained herein. Oshi Publishing, LLC makes no representation and, to the fullest extent allowed by law, disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied. The content published herein may include inaccuracies or typographical errors. Copyright 2018 Oshi Publishing, LLC. All rights reserved. Oshi Publishing, LLC, 81 Canal Lane Brinnon, WA 98320 · 360-796-4837 Email: info@3rdActMag.com

My granddaughter, Poppy.

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3rd Act magazine | fall 2018

For subscriptions and additional information, see us online at www.3rdActMag.com.

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contents FEATURES 28 TIME TO TAKE CHARGE

Dementia diagnosis? Time to be proactive. PRISCILLA CHARLIE HINCKLEY

32 A DVICE TO EMERY

44

10 gifts of wisdom and love for a grandson. CHARLES JOHNSON

36 G RANDPARENTS RAISING

GRANDKIDS An unexpected role

is embraced with gratitude and joy. ANN HEDREEN

48

44 W ESTERN WASHINGTON BIRDING HOT SPOTS

The Seattle Audubon Society shares some insider tips. ANGELA MINOR

ARTFUL AGING 8 AGING WITH INTENTION How to plan for a passionate retirement. LINDA HENRY

10 HONOR YOUR LIFE

Who belongs in your family? You can choose. JENNIFER JAMES

10

28

12 HATITUDE

Let’s tip our caps to timeless style. ANNIE CULVER

16 THE GRANDMA EFFECT

Humans aren’t the only mammals with grandmas. JANE MEYERS-BOWEN

48 A WOMAN OF MANY

COLORS Prizewinning author

Toni Morrison lightens the heart. KAREN WHITE-WALKER

58 THE CONNECTING POWER

OF SAND A grandfather inspires

an unusual family hobby. GRIGGS IRVING

16 Aging with Confidence

fall 2018

| 3rd Act magazine

5


24

X

52 LIFESTYLE 14 MONEY How to prepare for an

WELLNESS 20 SIT LESS, STAND MORE

18 HOW TO FIND A

22 PROSTATE CANCER—

inevitable market fall. DON McDONALD

TRUSTWORTHY CHARITY

Make smart decisions about your donations. CORINNA UNDERWOOD

34 THROUGH THE EYES OF MY

GRANDSON A generation’s view

on the challenges ahead. ANDREA COHEN

40 SKIP-GEN TRAVEL IS ON

THE RISE Experience destinations

through different age perspectives. ANN RANDALL

42 NO GRANDCHILDREN?

NO PROBLEM! The positives

and challenges of being child- and grandchild-free. DORI GILLAM

50 MY THIRD ACT

Her restlessness finds a creative outlet in storytelling. SILVANA CLARK

FALL 2018

Time to Take Charge

24 PADDLING FOR FITNESS

A workout that gets you into the flow. JOHN NELSON

26 G RANDCHILDREN AND

BRAIN HEALTH Happiness is

worth a cross-country move. MICHAEL PATTERSON

52 TASTEFULLY YOURS

Easy, made-ahead holiday treats. REBECCA CRICHTON

56 THE POWERFUL PURPLE

GRAPE A delicious way to add

healthful color to your diet. NANCY J. SCHAAF

IN EVERY ISSUE 60 O N THE TOWN Nordic Museum in Ballard transports visitors to Scandinavia. MISHA BERSON

64 B RAIN GAMES

GIFTS

Challenge yourself with these word puzzles.

Raising Grandkids It’s on the Rise

6

Moving from shock to fierce determination. GEORGE SANTINO

The RGB Workout by Bryant Johnson Reviewed by Jo Shilling

10 Wisdom for a Grandson

TRUSTWORTHY CHARITIES Tips on Making Smart Donations

PRIMED FOR A FIGHT

63 BOOKS

A Dementia Diagnosis Sparks Action

TASTEFULLY YOURS Holiday Treats Made Easy

A simple way to boost your health. DR. ERIC B. LARSON

PROSTATE CANCER Primed for a Fight

3rd Act magazine | fall 2018

Cover: Myriam Marquez lives with progressive memory loss. Diagnosed with a rare genetic form of Alzheimer’s in her early 60s, at 72 she remains in charge of her disease and her life. Photo by Teri Thomson Randall

LETTERS Always Good Reading I can’t tell you how delighted I am to read your magazine! The magazine is so well designed, with well-written articles, and the quality of the paper is excellent! The article on brain health by Michael Patterson (Let’s Find the Political Will to End Alzheimer’s, 3rd Act, Summer 2018) reinforced so succinctly the importance of keeping our brains active and engaged with interacting with a wide variety of people! So critical to our growing old with grace and style. Thank you for continuing to discuss why the Village movement is vital to our overall health (Our Village—A Feast of People, 3rd Act, Spring 2018). In Issaquah we are just beginning the process of inviting others to gather and learn what might be possible if we band together to form a community. I’m 59 years old and taking care of my 84-year-old mom who is recovering from a stroke. I’m determined to create a village to help us grow old together as a tribe who cares for each other. We need this social change to go back to our roots of community living; of helping our neighbors. The research and science are saying it’s important for us to engage as we age for our health. Thank you, Beacon Hill Boston, for showing us the way! — Katharine Wismer, Issaquah

(Editor’s note: Thank you, Katharine! Our back issues are all available to read at 3rdActMag.com. Readers who want to be sure they never miss a story can subscribe at 3rdActMag.com—or look for the card in this issue—and have 3rd Act delivered to your home.)

talk to us! by mail: 3rd Act Magazine, 81 Canal Lane, Brinnon, WA 98320 by email: info@3rdActMag.com Please include your name, city, state, and phone number when possible. Letters may be edited for length and clarity. www.3rdActMag.com


SEATTLE

90 405

N

5 SeaTac Airport

169

167

DES MOINES Puget Sound 18

TACOMA


AGING WITH INTENTION

Who do you want to be when you grow up? BY LINDA HENRY

Linda Henry writes regularly on topics related to aging, health care, and communication and is the co-author of several books, including Transformational Eldercare from the Inside Out: StrengthsBased Strategies for Caring. She conducts workshops nationally on aging and creating caring work environments. Her volunteer emphasis is age-friendly communities.

8

THOSE OF US NEARING RETIREMENT, or who have retired, may ask, “What’s next?” For some, retirement can be a time to engage in activities that are more aligned with their passion. Others may decide to return to work, pursuing something familiar or finally doing what they always wanted to do. Ken Dychtwald tells us, “When you enjoy your work, be it paid or unpaid, you tend to feel needed and productive, which adds meaning to your life.” As many of us live longer and remain healthier, we have new opportunities to follow—or to find— our passion. It is up to each of us to decide how to use the gifts of this new longevity in satisfying ways. What is passionate calling? George Bernard Shaw described it as “…the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one.” Writer and theologian Frederick Buechner adds, “A vocation is the place where your deep gladness meets the world’s deep needs.” It’s not too late to find it. Look through the rearview window of your life. What subject do you love learning about? What are you doing when time seems to fly? What do you do that energizes you and rarely bores you? Describe a time when you felt that you were in your passion. Most importantly, complete the statement, “I love to (fill in the blank).” What is it that you cannot not do? Reflect on the sense of fulfillment you have found in work. Some careers may offer a high level of success or reward but provide a low degree of fulfillment. When we engage in activities that reflect our passion or calling, we are more likely to experience a high sense of fulfilment and a high level of success and reward. Ann felt called to help others. After retiring from satisfying jobs

3rd Act magazine | fall 2018

in social work and nursing, she developed a “care team” ministry within her church. Identify the strengths and skills that you use routinely, even if you never did them for pay. Driven by a by a desire to give back to his community, Doug remained an active community volunteer until his death at 92. His strong organizational ability was evident in all of his volunteer work.

Next, develop a plan. Here are four ways to start: • Take small steps. Maybe you love animals, but becoming a vet is not practical or desirable. You can follow your passion through volunteering at rescue shelters, fostering animals, or becoming an advocate. • Take moderate risks. Community engagement through political involvement may feel risky, but serving as a volunteer on a local commission or board can be less so. • Develop a choir of support. We all need cheerleaders who give us encouragement, wisdom, and perspective. • Slay those “you can’t do that because…” messages we may carry with us. Now ask the burning question, “How and where am I to use the talent I have been placed on earth to use?” Then, promise in advance to listen and live the answer.

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Aging with Confidence

fall 2018

| 3rd Act magazine

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HONOR YOUR LIFE

Our Many Families BY JENNIFER JAMES

WE EACH GET THREE FAMILIES: The one we are born into, the one including people who help us survive and thrive as we grow up, and the one we choose ourselves through our experience and values. If we are lucky we can include in our chosen family people from the first two, but birth families can be toxic and survival families sometimes wear out. My natal family was splintered by WWII and our immigration from London to a farm in Spokane. Neglect, abuse, alcohol, poverty, and finally exclusionary in-laws shredded what was left. (I had once counted on my only sibling, but in order to keep the peace in his new family, I needed to disappear.)

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3rd Act magazine | fall 2018

By age 6, I think I understood that I was alone. Not quite, because I have always shared my life with animals. I loved them all—my horse Lucky Lady, Goldie the dog, and Quackie the duck. Left alone, I was free to wander our rural neighborhood. I delivered the early morning paper on horseback when I was 10. Those morning rides gave me determination and independence. But it handicapped me, too: I developed a fear of dependence, a love of solitude, and a desire for a Norman Rockwell life. I was determined to go it alone but still believed in that family dream. I remember walking home after school at dusk, seeing “real” families through their lighted windows. My second family were the adults who stepped in—those wonderful volunteers for Girl Scouts, 4-H, the good teacher, the welcoming neighbor, the supportive coworker. They helped me get through school and be successful at work. I regret not keeping them closer. Even as an adult, I did not understand how valuable these friends were. The good thing is I had a son at 20. We stayed close and then my daughter-in-law invited me to the birth of Kaito, my first biological grandchild. When I saw that sweet face emerging, it was primal. He and his sister are everything I had ever wanted. We are now, 10 years later, a close, loving family. When I began to grow up in my 40s, I decided to move away from the competitive miasma of my career and political life. I was lonely and I realized that it was up to me, not happenstance, to build a chosen family. I invited some women I met casually to a sort of club, like a book club but more. We started out 25 years ago as a noguilt, irreverent, good-deed group. We developed trust, comfortable interdependence, and a desire to play together whenever possible. The partners of these strong women agreed to go along. What choice did they have? These women are so special that I do not have the words to describe the impact they have had on my life. I trust them completely. In all our years together, not one has hurt me in any way. They helped me through my grief when my husband died. They accepted my new partner. They formed a girl group and sang Love and Happiness at my www.3rdActMag.com


wedding. They are the kindest people I have ever known. If this sounds like a tribute, it is. My friends have given me what I never had before. Plus, they are all a few years younger than me. I have other younger friends, too: students I have mentored or who have worked with me plus the children of my friends. I have a “bestie” who I met when we were on a panel 15 years ago. I was so impressed with her perspective that I pursued her until I became her friend. We talk about the world and family and we take care of each other. OK, your turn. How is your family? By now you know the trade-offs between our need for friendship, work, and solitude. Do you have some friends from your natal family? Do you have friends from school or work, friends of long standing? Who have you added to your family and why? Did you figure out how to make and keep friends, whether chosen or accidental? Do you give this family priority? Every day we have chances to build family now that we know what we value. I have learned

to be available for friendship, to choose friends carefully, to never compete or criticize, and to make the effort to schedule time together. I hope you started your third family earlier than I did because time together creates a special love and intimacy. My third family started when I was 50. I wasted a lot of time figuring out the basics of family and I walked over too many hot coals to get here. I believe if you keep your mind and heart open to relationships, despite past pain, your family can grow. Remember Field of Dreams. If you build it ... As long as we can put our arms around some combination of children, grandchildren, partners, and friends we can hold it all together until the end. And of course, a furry companion is a necessary part of my family. Now I have Alfie, as in What’s it All About, Alfie, who insists on sitting on my lap and makes it hard to tap these keys. That’s my backup plan: If my lifetime efforts to build a family come to naught, I will always have an Alfie.

Jennifer James has a doctorate in cultural anthropology and master’s degrees in history and psychology. She was a professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Washington Medical School. Jennifer is the founding mother of the Committee for Children, an international organization devoted to the prevention of child abuse worldwide.

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fall 2018

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HATITUDE Thanks to Grandpa

B

by Annie Culver

uying a vintage hat with moth bites all over it sounds like a hair-brained idea. I’ve asked the seller on Etsy if she might lower her price and I’m hopeful

she will. This isn’t just any hat. It’s one crafted by D.B. Fisk and Company, described by the Made in Chicago Museum as “a sophisticated enterprise of the Victorian age.” Growing up in the Chicago area during the 1950s, I knew little of the history of D.B. Fisk or my Grandpa’s career in the millinery business. I only knew the fun of shopping for a hat at Grandpa’s factory. Delving into hat history, I discovered that only 18 years after David Brainerd Fisk founded his company, its stately building was destroyed in the vast Chicago fire of 1871. Less than two years later, Fisk—lauded for his leadership, taste, and merchandise sagacity—built a five-story factory, department store, and distribution center with offices of black walnut and ebony. More than one fashion magazine described D.B. Fisk as the largest and finest millinery establishment in the world. Fisk even launched its own magazine called Monitor of Fashion. By 1898, Fisk had 465 employees, more than 300 of them female. The hatmakers then moved into a 13-story edifice in 1913. Women typically washed their hair only once a month in those days, so hats were wardrobe essentials. Then along came the Depression, which didn’t go easy on men’s wallets or women’s pocketbooks for the likes of luxury hats. Shampoo was cheaper.

12

3rd Act magazine | fall 2018

Fisk gave up its sumptuous quarters by 1932 (today it’s a hotel), made what was described as a humbling reorganization, and moved to one floor in a building down the street. The vice president became Fisk’s president. And that would be my cigar-smoking Grandpa Joe. I long to have been born when D.B. Fisk was in its heyday. Still, I have rich memories of family pilgrimages to visit Gramps at his workplace in the Chicago Loop where I glimpsed the scaled-back hat factory in operation. From the time I was 6 or 8 years old, Grandpa would usher me in and leave me to chat with the women hatmakers who’d be giddy to have a young guest. “It’s the boss’s granddaughter,” they’d loudly whisper among themselves each time I visited. They would try hat after hat on me, mirror in hand, and offer their not-quite-unbiased opinions. I’d walk the aisle, stopping at pattern hats, tailored hats, straw hats, flowers to go on them and more. On each visit, I’d get to select just one—often a new Easter bonnet—to call mine. I remember all types of materials, especially straw, lace, ribbon, ornaments, and other novelties. Many women sat at sewing machines and appeared to bring all the hat elements together with confidence and joy. The creaky, hardwood floor and the scent of straw stuck with me over the years. As did Grandpa’s approval of my hat selection when I returned to the front office to model. “Lookin’ good, Annie,” he’d say. He never disapproved. Grandpa Joe had a playful side, particularly when he imitated TV and motion picture veteran Jimmy Durante. www.3rdActMag.com


He’d dance with his shoulders scrunched up around his ears, and sing goofy Durante favorites like Inka Dinka Doo. As he shuffled and dealt cards for family games of canasta, Gramps smoked imported cigars, which provoked me to frown until he carefully removed the paper ring from around a cigar, gently put it on my left-hand ring finger, chuckled out of the side of his mouth, and told me we were now engaged. I’d wear one of those rings until it fell apart. Grandpa’s sense of humor? It didn’t matter that the log cabin he built on a lake in northern Wisconsin had indoor plumbing. He insisted on adding a matching log outhouse with a view of the lake, its own magazine rack, and his hand-scrawled signs. My favorite: “Lady, move over. We’re workin’ under here.” Grandpa Joe retired and Fisk was out of business by the time I was a teenager. Yet when I scope out hat makers at art fairs or enter a shop like Byrnie Utz Hats, which closed in Seattle this fall after 84 years, my voice suddenly develops a kidlike squeak when I announce, “My Grandpa was a milliner.” I know they’ll comprehend the word milliner as I slip into reverie about Grandpa and the hat factory. And, yep, I scored that Fisk hat on Etsy for a little less. So when you see a woman sporting a moth-bitten, cornflower blue cloche from the 1950s, feel free to shout out, “Is that a Fisk?!” The mad hatter wearing it will be smiling bigheadedly. Annie Culver developed a knack for unearthing oddball characters and improbable events as a staff writer for various newspapers. In the early 1990s, she went to work for websites where she wrote sassy essays aimed at women. In recent years, she morphed into a writer for several universities in the Northwest. She retired in 2016, yet still enjoys freelancing.

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Credit goes to Chicagology.com and madeinchicagomuseum.com for the history lessons.

Aging with Confidence

206.546.7565

fall 2018

| 3rd Act magazine 13


MONE Y

The Market Will Fall (Here’s what you can do about it) BY DON MCDONALD

The host of the nationally syndicated Don McDonald Show for over 20 years, Don now co-hosts Talking Real Money with Tom Cock on Seattle’s KOMO radio Saturdays at noon (talkingrealmoney.com). Don also publishes the investing magazine, real investing journal (realinvestingjournal. com).

I AM ASKED ONE QUESTION more than any other: “What is the stock market going to do?” The only reasonably correct answer is: “It will fall.” The aggregate value of stocks will go lower at some point. That much is reasonably certain because that’s what has happened in the past. It’s a reality for which every investor must be prepared. A slightly less concrete, yet historically accurate response would add “…and very likely go up again.” But this isn’t the answer people seek. “What is the stock market going to do?” is only part of their query. Left unsaid is “…and when is it going to do it?” That question is totally unanswerable, because it requires an ability to defy physics and know the future, which is absolutely unknowable. Yet far too many perceived experts will gladly misrepresent a mere guess as an unequivocal certainty. The future cannot be known. Period. Anyone who states otherwise is either a fool or a liar. We can, however, make a reasonably sound guess about stock market behavior based on about a century of data. In aggregate, stock prices will rise, fall, and probably rise again. Of that, FIXED INCOME

I am pretty confident. When markets will fall and subsequently rise cannot be known or even estimated with any degree of accuracy. All we can know is what J.P. Morgan said many decades ago in response to the “what will the stock market do?” question. His answer was, “It will fluctuate.” So we must invest with that reality in mind. Once you understand that you can’t know when the stock market will rise or fall (and trading individual stocks is even more difficult), you need to invest based on you, not the market. Historically, an investment in a 100 percent globally diversified portfolio of stocks has suffered a loss of more than 50 percent in a single year. You should have all of your assets in equities (another word for stocks) only if you are absolutely certain that you would remain invested in a such a frightening scenario. Bear in mind that the worst historical case for owning just a few individual stocks is a 100 percent loss. The accompanying chart shows the average annual return and the worst one- and five-yearreturns for various stock-to-bond portfolio ratios along with that portfolio’s historic standard deviation (a measure of volatility—lower numbers mean less volatility). Your financial adviser should work with you to assess your risk tolerance before allocating your investments. There are also free online tools available to help you determine how much portfolio volatility you can stand. Check out RisQuiz at talkingrealmoney.com. With a better understanding of your risk tolerance, you will be able to create a portfolio for the one guarantee that stocks offer—they will fall.

10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% EQUITIES EQUITIES EQUITIES EQUITIES EQUITIES EQUITIES EQUITIES EQUITIES EQUITIES EQUITIES

S&P 500

ANNUAL RETURN

5.9%

6.8%

7.6%

8.4%

9.2%

9.7%

10.4% 11.1% 11.6% 12.1% 12.5% 10.5%

STANDARD DEVIATION

4.1%

4.0%

4.6%

5.5%

6.7%

7.9%

9.3%

10.7% 12.2% 13.7% 15.2% 15.1%

WORST YEAR

-3.2% -4.6% -9.1% -14.9% -20.1% -25.1% -30.3% -35.7% -40.9% -46.1% -51.3% -43.3%

WORST 5 YEARS

-0.2%

1.1%

1.9%

2.0%

1.6%

0.8%

-0.1% -0.7% -1.7% -2.9% -4.2% -6.6%

Equity portfolios assume 50% Diversified U.S. and 50% Diversified International and are net of a 0.9% management fee. Figures are from 1970 to 2017 and are based on both actual results and academic simulations from Dimensional Fund Advisors. Data is after fund expenses and includes reinvested dividends and capital gains.

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3rd Act magazine | fall 2018

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Aging with Confidence

fall 2018

| 3rd Act magazine 15


The Grandma Effect How Grandparents Help Children Survive and Thrive

W

hat do humans, elephants, and whales have in ever. Add in the high cost of quality daycare—a struggle for common? Grandmas! Granny, the oldest known many families across all income groups—and more than ever, orca on record, lived in the coastal waters of a grandparent’s presence is necessary to not only succeed Washington until she disappeared in 2016. She was estimated in the world but to survive. to be between 60 and 80 years old, but a paper published in If you don’t live close to your grandchildren, become 1987 suggested she was likely born in 1911, which would mean proficient at using FaceTime or Skype on your computer she lived to 105. As Howard Garrett of the Orca Network told or smart phone. It’s easy to use and will connect you faceNational Geographic, “She was the counselor, the guide, the to-face with your grandchildren no matter where they live. teacher of traditions.” Don’t have grandchildren? Grandparents are BY JANE Most mammals can reproduce until they die, often “adopted” by non-family members who MEYERS-BOWEN yet whales, elephants, and humans go through appreciate the benefits their children receive from menopause. Studies show that post-menopausal grandmas older adults who love the opportunity to nurture, mentor, help ensure the survival and longevity of their own grand- and support them. Elders from the retirement community offspring—and even offspring not related to them. Older where I work recently stepped forward to take on the role of female elephants and orca whales carry forward social grandparenting with high school-age youth. Students sat and knowledge and secrets on finding food sources. The grandma listened to wizened adults recall their lives during the Great elephant is clearly the family matriarch. (It’s one thing she Depression and war years. History came alive for them, and doesn’t forget!) the students walked away with greater understanding of The role of human grandmothers (and grandfathers) is themselves and courage about facing their own challenges evolving; we are living longer, our children are having children in life. later, and according to the Pew Research Center, 20 percent of Many older Americans say the best part of growing old is to U.S. households are multigenerational. Another interesting have more time with family. In fact, grandparents have taken find by Pew is that 22 percent of American grandparents to the political arena. Grandparents’ Rights of Washington regularly help with childcare, compared to 46 percent of State was formed 11 years ago to help grandparents get grandparents in Germany, and 39 percent of grandparents in legal visitation rights to see their grandchildren. Governor Italy. Older adults in America have less financial government Jay Inslee signed a bill on March 22, 2018, granting relatives support than in these European countries and often return (including but not limited to grandparents) the right to seek to work, which may contribute to some of this discrepancy. visitation with a child through the courts. This is just another Today’s youth face a high prevalence of bullying, example of how grandparents are taking ownership of their heightened levels of anxiety and depression, drug and alcohol role and value in a child’s life. epidemics, and gun violence at their schools. They need the Jane Meyers-Bowen is the Marketing Director at Garden Court Retirement experience and life wisdom grandparents can offer more than Community. For more information you can contact her at 425-438-9080.

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Don’t miss a single issue! (But you can still order back issues if you did.)

Time to Take Charge

What We Hold Dear

10 Wisdom for a Grandson

How Long Will You Work?

A City for Everyone

Seattle’s Quest to be Age-Friendly

Affirming Our Shared Common Values

A Dementia Diagnosis Sparks Action

GIFTS

Reimagining Home Vibrant Living Choices Abound

Small-Space Decorating

It’s on the Rise

TASTEFULLY YOURS Holiday Treats Made Easy

Art and Adventure A Recipe for Long Life fe

It’s Not Just About the Money

Raising Grandkids

SPRING 2018

SUMMER 2018

FALL 2018

That Will Make Your Heart Sing

TRUSTWORTHY CHARITIES Tips on Making Smart Donations

PROSTATE CANCER Primed for a Fight

TASTEFULLY YOURS Easy Summer Meals

INVESTING AND POLITICS Are They Connected?

TRIPPING HAZARD A Bad Day for a Good Dog

MEDICINAL MUSICALS Your Brain on Show Tunes

GET HEALTHIER By Digging in the Dirt

PEOPLE-FRIENDLY HOMES For Every Age and Ability

SUMMER 2017

Moment

in the Sun

Take Flight

Coming into Our Own

Everyday Heroes Are All Around Us

Bionic Bodies

Is it Time for a Few New Parts? FOR A HEALTHIER BRAIN Savor a Sunset

SPRING 2017

The Aging of

Aquarius Will Boomers Change Aging?

ROAD TRIP TIME Places to Go, Things to See

RETIRED! Now What?

FALL 2016

SUMMER 2016

LIVING A LEGACY

Laugh

Meet Dee Dickinson

Your Way to

STYLISH SENIOR LIVING

Better Health

Give

Time, Talent, and Treasure

The Pleasure Bond Sex & Dating After 50 MICROBUS TO MOTOR COACH Living an RV Retirement

NEVER GIVE UP Alene Moris’ Lifelong Activism

COHOUSING The New Communal Living

The Girls in the Boat

Reimagine

Masters Rowing on Green Lake

Home for the Holidays

Tita Begashaw coaches the Tee Hee Hee Laughter Group at Harborview Medical Center.

RETIREMENT COMMUNITY

MAMMA’S MANNA Old World love

CULTURAL CONVERGENCE The changing face of caregiving

OCEANS AND HUMANS The legacy of John Delaney

BRAIN FITNESS Take Your Brain for a Spin

SOME THINGS GET BETTER WITH AGE Winetasting in Woodinville

A CAREGIVER’S GIFT Letting Others Help

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fall 2018

| 3rd Act magazine 17


A Habitat for Humanity volunteer helps a man sign for his shelter repair kit outside the Humacao Arena three months after Hurricane Maria struck.

How to Find a Trustworthy Charity for Your Donation BY CORINNA UNDERWOOD

In September 2017 Hurricane Maria dealt the island of Puerto Rico a brutal blow. The storm destroyed many homes, left an unstable power grid, and wiped out over 80 percent of the island’s annual crops. People were struggling to survive as food supplies, clean water, and medicine ran perilously low. The U.S. territory had to fight for federal government funding for everything from construction materials to recovery efforts—and at the same time, relief programs suffered from “donor fatigue.” When multiple tragedies happen at the same time, it increases the strain on donors, one of many factors that shape if and how much people donate to charities. These decisions can have profound effects on communities that have suffered disasters. And sadly, sometimes your donations do not get spent on the cause you are donating to. According to the National Center for Charitable Statistics, there are currently more than 1.5 million nonprofit organizations in the United States. With so many options, how can you be sure your money is going where it is needed most? Like a GPS for giving Charity Navigator is a useful online tool to help you

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Here are some other charity watchdog sites to help you find a cause you can trust: Guidestar: This site provides records from more than 1.5 million non-profits which are registered with the IRS. Guidestar.org Charity Watch: This organization was founded 25 years ago as the American Institute of Philanthropy. The group does its own research into how efficiently charities use their donation funds. CharityWatch.org BBB Wise Giving Alliance: Although the Better Business Bureau Giving Alliance does not rank charities, it provides reports on around 1,300 national charities that meet all BBB standards. Give.org

make safe decisions about your donations. Since 2001, the website has helped benefactors in their search for intelligent giving. Charity Navigator has current information on charities organized into a broad range of categories including the most popular and the most followed charities as well as charities that are suffering from financial difficulties. The site also offers a host of resources and advice for first-time and regular donors. Verify a charity’s claims Before you donate your money to a specific charity, do your homework. Examine the charity’s financial records. Be sure that the cause is directing at least 7 5 percent of its budget to the services and programs it is set up to provide. Charity Navigator gives you several options for checking a charity’s background. You can look up a charity through the searchable alphabetical listings at charitynavigator.org, or you can browse specific categories, such as environment, animals, or human services. www.3rdActMag.com


Find the most reliable charities If you want to find out about charities with the best financial transparency and accountability, simply check the Charity Navigator’s four-star rated charities, which currently number about 3,250. Beyond that top tier, the site lists thousands more well-run and effective charities, so you can be sure your donation is reaching its destination. All you have to do is type the organization’s name to see complete details of each charity’s mission, policies, and annual income statements. Other useful information includes the charity’s compensation to leaders, financial performance metrics, and the latest news involving the charity. There’s even an option at the bottom of the page that allows you to check out similar or regional charities. Another useful tool is Charity Navigator’s Top Ten lists. Clicking here will take you to a range of lists from celebrity-run charities to “10 Charities Worth Watching,” highlyrated nonprofits operating on less than $2 million a year. The most-watched charity is Doctors Without Borders U.S.A., notable for the low pay of its CEO, who made just over $200,000 in fiscal year 2016. Their profile also notes that 89 percent of their finances go to their program and services, and that in 2016 their total revenue amounted to $374,399,344. By becoming a registered free personal user at Charity Navigator, you can flag specific charities that catch your interest and organize them in your personal charity portfolio so that you can compare them directly. You can share them with your friends or fellow fundraisers. In other words, Charity Navigator makes it easy to do a world of good—and feel confident about where your donations go.

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Corinna Underwood has published hundreds of nonfiction features, articles, and short fiction pieces. She is the author of Murder and Mystery in Atlanta, and The Darkside Chronicles.

Aging with Confidence

TIME TO STRUT OUR STUFF.

Serving Pierce, King and Kitsap counties

fall 2018

| 3rd Act magazine 19


WELLNESS

SIT LESS

STAND

TURN TV TIME INTO ACTIVE TIME Looking for a simple way to boost • Use commercials as a signal to take your heart health, build bone and a break from sitting. muscle strength, and improve your mood? Consider standing more and • Do standing chores like ironing or sitting less. folding clothes while viewing. Research shows that older • Limit your time to shows you really SMALL CHANGES people on average spend more than enjoy. Turn off the box when you find CAN BRING BIG nine waking hours a day sitting or it dull or annoying. Take a short walk reclining—habits that put us at risk HEALTH REWARDS instead. for poor health. Too much sedentary BY DR. ERIC B. LARSON time has been linked to obesity, LITTLE THINGS ADD UP heart disease, diabetes, and some • Take your dog for an extra stroll each cancers—even among those who are physically active other day. Do the same with your grandchild, spouse, or friend. times of day. • Park your car a block away when running errands. That’s why doctors and health scientists are encouraging • Walk an extra lap around the grocery store. people to spend more time on their feet. For example, my colleague Dori Rosenberg found that coaching people over • Take a walk around the block after each meal.

MORE

age 60 to stand more had positive results. Participants in her study spent 54 minutes less per day sitting. Their walking speed increased, they had less depression, and they felt more accomplished. Now Dr. Rosenberg is conducting a larger study where volunteers wear a small tracking device on their waist or thigh. Data from the devices, along with information from their health records, may soon tell us how standing more can improve various health conditions. In the meantime, you can do some experimenting of your own. See if following these tips help you feel stronger and more energetic: PRACTICE STANDING WHEN YOU USUALLY SIT • Stand at the counter to read the news, work on your computer, eat lunch, or play a game. • Stand and pace while talking on the phone. • Use a music stand to read a book or magazine.

• Climb stairs in your house—just for the exercise. • If you live in a large building, walk through the halls. • Write a letter each day and walk to the mailbox to send it. FOLLOW YOUR PROGRESS Tracking your success can be fun and motivating. Some people use mechanical pedometers to count their steps each day. Others use digital trackers such as a Fitbit, a smart watch, or a smart-phone app—any of which can monitor calories burned, floors climbed, and duration and intensity of exercise. But you don’t really need such gizmos, especially if you consistently follow some of the tips I’ve offered. The point is to cut your time sitting or reclining and boost time on your feet. Over time, you may have more energy and fewer health concerns. Dr. Eric B. Larson is vice president for research and health care innovation at Kaiser Permanente Washington and author of Enlightened Aging: Building Resilience for a Long, Active Life (Rowman & Littlefield, 2017).

• Practice stretching or strengthening exercises as you take breaks from sitting.

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1Free with no obligation. 2For our Key Plan. 3Other copays, cost sharing, or coinsurance may apply. 4Excludes Basic Plan. 5Access to select premium fitness clubs available on Vital, Essential, and Optimal plans. Gym initiation fees may apply for new fitness center members. 6Limitations may apply. Kaiser Permanente is an HMO plan with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in Kaiser Permanente depends on contract renewal. You must reside in the Kaiser Permanente Medicare health plan service area in which you enroll. This information is not a complete description of benefits. Call 1-888-901-4600 (TTY 711), seven days a week, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., for more information. For accommodations of persons with special needs at meetings, call 1-877-239-0806 (TTY 711). Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Washington, 1300 SW 27th St. Renton, WA 98057. H5050_MA0002063-50-18M_M


YOU HAVE PROSTATE CANCER.” THE PUNCH IN THE STOMACH.

PRIMED FOR A HHH

HHH

FIGHT

Faced With an Unexpected Diagnosis, He’s Not Ready to Back Down BY GEORGE SANTINO

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“What? What did you say?” The doctor asked if I had any questions and those were the only two I could come up with at that moment. For years at my annual physical, I’ve been screened for prostate specific antigen, the test that tells the doctor if you have a problem with your prostate such as cancer or benign prostatic hyperplasia. My PSA has been 2.5 for years, and my doctor always said that was a fine number for a man in his 50s. That’s not to say I didn’t have some problems with my prostate. Heck, most men do as they get older, but I was told it was just a slight enlargement problem. Nothing to really worry about. Once again it was time for my annual physical. I turned 61 this year, but I was sure I wasn’t going to hear any bad news. When the doctor called, he said all my numbers looked good. I thought the call was over, short and sweet, but then he said I might have a problem with my prostate—that after being 2.5 for years my PSA was now 4.8. He added that 4.8 for a 61-year-old man isn’t too high, but the jump from 2.5 to 4.8 in one year was cause for concern. He suggested I see a urologist just to be safe. I wasn’t too worried. I’ve had my share of health scares but they always turned out to be nothing. I was sure this would be, too. So, I found a local urology office and made an appointment. I was told the male doctors were booked out a couple of months but that a female physician could see me right away. Because I knew a bit about what the test was going to involve, I thought a female doctor—which typically means smaller hands— was a fine way to go. A few days later, I was in the doctor’s office. She agreed that a 4.8 PSA wasn’t very high but she also agreed that jumping from 2.5 to 4.8 in one year was indeed cause for concern. She asked if she could do a digital exam. Of course, I knew what that meant and it had nothing to do with digital technology, but referred to the digit she was going to use. I said yes, and she proceeded, narrating as she went: The left side of your prostate is soft as it should be but the right side is firm and, on the top, I feel a nodule the size of a frozen pea.

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After the exam, she told me that firmness is not what you want in a prostate and the nodule—she didn’t say tumor—was a cause for concern. She wanted to do a biopsy. She said, I’m not saying you have cancer but this test will tell us for sure. Cancer? Why did she even use the word? I was sure it was going to be fine. When the day for the next test arrived, I went into the office with more than a little hesitation. The doctor told me that I would be laying on my side facing a TV screen where I could see the entire procedure. The doctor told me I would feel two slight stings as a numbing shot of Lidocaine was injected into each side of my prostate. She then pointed out a white, circle-looking thing in the upper right corner of my prostate and said that this was the tumor. That was the first time she used that word. She then said that a needle would shoot out from the probe into my prostate and remove a small piece of material. This was done 12 times and though I could hear and see the needle fire into the prostate, I didn’t feel a thing. The whole procedure only lasted about 15 minutes. Before I left, I was told the results would be ready in a couple of weeks and we set an appointment for me to return to hear the news. I still wasn’t worried. The two weeks went by quickly and I returned to the doctor for the results. My wife went with me and while we sat in the doctor’s office, we joked around about where we would go to celebrate the good news we were about to get. We were talking about whether we should go out for pie or ice cream when the doctor came in. She saw we were all smiles and laughing and for some reason decided she would just cut to the chase. You have prostate cancer, she said. Are you serious? I felt like I’d just been punched in the stomach. My wife and I were sitting in chairs in the office. To our left was one of those little beds with the white paper on it. The doctor sat on a chair, rolled toward the bed, and starting drawing on the white paper. We pulled our chairs closer so we could see. She drew a picture of the prostate. She made circles where they’d taken biopsies. She drew a larger circle on the top right of the prostate and labeled it “tumor.” She drew a darker circle on the upper right and lower right and said that’s where they’d found the cancer. Then she began reciting some numbers. She said since you have a tumor I could feel we have a T, and because the

Aging with Confidence

cancer is on one side and at the top and the bottom you have a T2b, and based on how the cells looked you have a Gleason score of 6. She went on to say a Gleason score of 7–10 is bad and a score of 1–5 is not bad, but I’m a 6. So, there you have it. I have stage 2 prostate cancer, T2b with a Gleason score of 6. Now what?

MY ADVICE 1) Exercise and eat plenty of cruciferous vegetables, like broccoli and cauliflower. 2) Get a physical every year and have both a digital rectal exam and your PSA levels tested. 3) If your doctor finds anything out of the ordinary with these tests, go to a urologist right away. 4) The only way to know for sure if it’s cancer is with a biopsy of the prostate. If you need it, get it. 5) If you hear the dreaded C word, get educated. There are plenty of good books and reliable sources like the American Cancer Society (cancer.org) and the National Cancer Institute (cancer.gov) on the internet. 6) Get support. Don’t be afraid to tell family and friends.

The urologist told me I have three options. One is watchful waiting. Two is radiation. Number three is surgery. She stated that option one isn’t really an option; at that point, she didn’t think the cancer had spread, but if it does, I would likely die fairly soon. Now we’re getting serious. So that leaves radiation or surgery. She said radiation certainly isn’t guaranteed and it is usually reserved for people who can’t tolerate surgery, leaving me with option three, a radical prostatectomy. She said she would refer me to a radiation oncologist and a surgeon. They’ll tell me what they advise, and based on that, I’ll have a decision to make. I still feel like I was punched in the stomach. I’ll let you know what I decide to do and will continue to write about this new challenge in my life. But no matter what happens, as the title of my book says, I will Get Back Up. George A. Santino helps people who want to break down barriers, including self-imposed barriers, to success. Check out his book, Get Back Up: From the Streets to Microsoft Suites, which was an Amazon bestseller.

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| 3rd Act magazine 23


Say ‘Aloha’

to Paddling for Fitness BY JOHN NELSON

The world might be a better place if people simply followed what Hawaiians have done for centuries—paddled together. A six-person outrigger canoe is all about unity. With each paddle stroke, you feel the power of laulima, the Hawaiian word for “many hands working together.” “There’s an incredible healing aspect to being on the water,” says Mahe Keliipaakaua of Maui Paddle Sports, a company that offers guided outrigger canoe trips on West Maui. It’s also a great workout that anyone—from children to senior citizens—can do. During a spring visit to Hawaii, our crew hit the water in the Maui Paddle Sports canoe from the tourist center of Ka’anapali Beach. Along for the ride were a couple from Danville, CA—Joyce Fennessey, in her 70s, and her husband Jim, celebrating his 80th birthday. After grabbing paddles, we took our seats and learned the basics, following the lead of our guide Lyndsay Greenan. The number one concept is to keep your strokes synchronized— many hands working together—to most efficiently propel the canoe. With a little practice, we quickly got the hang of it. It was an amazingly smooth and stable ride despite the choppy, trade wind-whipped water, thanks to our outrigger, or ama, as it is called in Hawaiian. It’s easy to see how outrigger canoes have been used for centuries to travel amid the wild seas of the South Pacific. Our tour took us up and down the scenic West Maui coastline, and after a couple of hours, we returned to the beach. “It was a great workout,” Joyce said afterward. “And it was a challenge, but I got into the flow.” Something about paddling also struck Jim. “It’s a very meditative experience,” he said. “It felt kind of spiritual,” agreed Joyce. That’s an apt description. As you paddle an outrigger, you can’t help but stay in the moment, quieting your busy brain with each stroke—and because you’re working as a team, it feels like you’re sharing that meditation. In other words, you feel laulima.

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While paddling is certainly good for the soul, what about the body? “It’s a great core workout—you’re working your whole body, really,” Greenan says. It might look like paddling is all about arm strength, but you actually work your shoulders and latissimus dorsi, the muscles under your shoulder blades on your back. “The best paddlers have huge lats,” she adds. Greenan, like many transplants to Hawaii, has embraced the paddling culture by joining a club team. “It’s an amazing way to get linked in with your community,” she says. Paddling clubs are part of Hawaii much like rec league softball teams are common on the mainland. “Being a great paddler in Hawaii is like being a great hockey player in Canada. People here grow up paddling,” adds Keliipaakaua.

Outrigger Paddling Several easy options for paddling are available in the Seattle area: Seattle Outrigger Canoe Club: (Lake Union) Seattleoutrigger.com Hui Wa’a O Wakinikona: (Lake Union) Wakinikonaclub.com Sand Point Paddling Club: (Lake Washington) Sailsandpoint.org Kikaha O Ke Kai: (Commencement Bay) Kikaha.com

Stand-Up Paddling Many outfitters offer stand-up paddle boards in the Seattle area: Surf Ballard: (Shilshole Bay) Surfballard.com Thunderbird Stand Up Paddling: (Lake Union) Thunderbirdsup.com Alki Kayak Tours: (West Seattle) Kayakalki.com Dolan’s Board Sports: (Tacoma) Dolansboardsports. com

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COME

PLAY WITH US!

From front to back: John Nelson, Joyce Fennessey, and Jim Fennessey during a voyage with Maui Paddle Sports.

Lifelong Recreation Programs for ages 50+

Iokepa Naoele, 56, is one such Maui paddler who has been on the ocean his entire life. As manager of ocean activities at Ka’anapali Beach Hotel, Naoele now revels in introducing visitors to the outrigger canoeing tradition and says there’s no better way to experience the islands. “When I take people out in the canoe, I take them back in history,” says Naoele, who offers guided excursions in a brand new six-person canoe. “I want a family that comes to visit to be able to go home with this experience,” he adds. “It’s not just a ride—it’s rooted in our culture.” And once you try it, you might get hooked. “It’s a lifestyle here,” Naoele adds. “It’s more than just a club or a recreational activity.” Once you’ve experienced the outrigger canoe, you might want to try a much newer form of paddling. Stand-up paddle boards, commonly called SUPs, have exploded in popularity worldwide in recent years, and like outrigger canoes, they originated in the South Pacific. Today, stand-up paddling is one of the most popular activities in Hawaii. Naoele says novices will want to take a lesson since standing up on a tippy board requires some practice before you feel comfortable. But once you get the hang of it, you’ll get a great workout. “You feel it in your back, your legs and shoulders and abs,” says Naoele.

Call today to receive our new FREE catalogue Seattle Parks & Recreation 206-615-0619

John Nelson is a freelance outdoors writer based in Seattle.

Aging with Confidence

fall 2018

| 3rd Act magazine 25


Grandchildren Help Us Accentuate the Positive BY MICHAEL C. PATTERSON

Michael C. Patterson, founder and CEO of MINDRAMP Consulting, writes extensively on the art and science of brain health and mental flourishing. He is an educator and consultant who previously managed AARP’s Staying Sharp brain health program and helped develop the field of creative aging.

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The evil monster hunched his shoulders and growled menacingly through clenched teeth. His clawlike hands rasped the air. His beady eyes scanned left and right searching for his prey. He froze when a burst of giggles exploded behind him, then turned menacingly in the direction of the gleeful sounds. There they were! Three delicious-looking little boys cowered behind an armchair. With a ferocious growl, the monster lunged at the boys, setting off a new explosion of shrieks and screams. The children were doomed! Yet somehow, they managed to escape unharmed and buried the monster under a pile of pillows. In the summer of 2013, my wife and I sold many of our belongings and loaded what was left into a 26-foot Penske rental truck. We carefully maneuvered our Toyota Matrix onto a trailer attached to the back of the truck. Then we set off on a 2,700-mile drive from the suburbs of Washington, DC, to Los Angeles. My wife had just retired. I worked from home studying brain health and developing programs to promote mental flourishing. Both of our daughters lived in Southern California and were beginning to make babies.

3rd Act magazine | fall 2018

We had been at the birth of our first grandson and fell in love with him (and with our new role as grandparents). But we lived on the East Coast and could only spend the first month of our grandson’s life with him. We wanted to be fulltime grandparents. Our daughters were not going to move back east, so our only choice was to relocate across the country. Since our move, our oldest daughter in L.A. has had a second son. Our younger daughter, who lives in San Diego, has kept pace and now has a son and a daughter. We now live within driving distance of four grandchildren. The oldest is seven; our youngest is a four-monthold granddaughter. The move was the right thing for us to do for many reasons, not the least of which is that grandparenting is good for our brain health. At the top of the list of benefits is a simple fact that our grandchildren make us happy. No, that understates their effect. We now experience joy, delight, and awe on a near-daily basis. www.3rdActMag.com


One of the problems with advanced age is that life can lose a bit of its luster. I must admit that I get a bit world-weary at times. Intellectually, I know that we are much better off than any other group of people in the history of the world. But emotionally, I grieve that so much of our progress is being threatened and that so many still suffer. This dim, despairing view of the world is not unrealistic; it is just unbalanced. Our brains have evolved to latch onto the negatives. It’s a survival mechanism. We need to pay attention to threats to protect ourselves. But this evolved focus on dangers gives us a skewed vision of reality. The negatives are amplified and the positives are ignored. We take the good stuff for granted and fail to appreciate the great good fortune we have to be alive and healthy in modern-day America. My grandchildren bring my life back into balance. My brain and mind are healthier because my grandchildren remind me of all that is beautiful and hopeful. The great Harold Arlen and Johnny Mercer tune Ac-cent-tchu-ate the Positive succinctly describes why our decision to relocate to be close to our grandchildren was a good decision.

You’ve got to ac-cent-tchu-ate the positive, Elim-inate the negative, Latch on to the affirmative, Don’t mess with Mister In-Between. Why do my wife and I strive to remain physically fit? Why do we eat well and try to get enough sleep? Why do we continue to challenge our minds with novel—and positive—activities?

Grandparenting is good for our brain health. At the top of the list of benefits is a simple fact that our grandchildren make us happy. No, that understates their effect. We now experience joy, delight, and awe on a near-daily basis. We love being role models for positive, creative aging. We do all of this so that we have more happy years to spend with our family. We do it so that we can run around and play tag, splash in the surf, and roll on the floor being monsters enjoying our giggling grandchildren. We do it to be happy.

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Aging with Confidence

fall 2018

| 3rd Act magazine 27


Time to Take Charge People with early memory loss can plan their own futures

BY PRISCILLA CHARLIE HINCKLEY PHOTO BY TERI THOMSON R ANDALL

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Myriam Marquez has always lived an interesting life. An attorney, she worked for the Maryland General Assembly, as a law professor at Georgetown University, and in private practice in Annapolis before moving to the Pacific Northwest to work for AARP. She has traveled the world, spent a month in India studying with a guru, and raised four daughters. In her 50s, she became a public defender in Washington’s Skagit County. And that’s where her story took a turn. “I came to a four-way stop near my house, and suddenly I didn’t know where I was,” she recalls. Although she was fine within seconds, that was the moment Myriam knew she had Alzheimer’s. She was 62 years old. Myriam has a rare genetic form of the disease, passed through her father’s family; DNA testing confirmed that she carries the gene. Not knowing how many good years she’d have left, Myriam chose to leave her career and focus on advocacy, working with the Alzheimer’s Association and the State of Washington. Now 71, Myriam’s life continues to be interesting. She lives in a SHAG (Senior Housing Assistance Group) apartment complex in Seattle, with her spaniel Joe Cocker. It’s a good fit financially and she has a lot of activities available. She goes out with friends to dinner, movies, and plays. She takes advantage of community activities for people with memory loss. And she relies on technology to help cover gaps in her memory. “I went out and bought GPS right after the four-way stop,” she says. “I use all the tools—cell phone, laptop, GPS. I don’t take any chances.” Anyone with progressive memory loss will need to eventually make a choice about housing—or their family members will. The first thing to think about is quality of life, which is more than simply meeting physical needs. Emotional fulfillment through social contact and stimulating experiences is essential to wellbeing, explains Genevieve Wanucha of UW Medicine’s Memory and Brain Wellness Center. People in early stages of memory loss may choose to continue living independently. Community senior centers and the Alzheimer’s Association are good sources of ideas to stay engaged and involved, as are these Seattle examples: • The Frye Art Museum’s Creative Aging Programs offer a monthly Alzheimer’s Café, with music and food; creative arts projects for people in their homes; discussion tours of the galleries; and art-making classes. • Seattle Parks and Recreation teams with UW Medicine’s Memory and Brain Wellness Center to create monthly tours of various public gardens. • Momentia is a grassroots movement empowering people with

Aging with Confidence

memory loss to stay active. Its website is a source for all kinds of activities.

Adult day programs offer physical, social, and cognitive activities. Rosewood Courte, a secure memory care community, also offers a day program at its Edmonds location. Its Senior Day Stay takes this type of service to a new level of convenience. “We’re available 365 days a year, 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.” says administrator Patrick Shepard. “People can come for 30 minutes or the whole day; you don’t have to maintain a schedule or use a minimum amount of time.” There’s an initial admission process, including medical information and personal history. After that, participants in Day Stay can attend whenever they want. There are activities every day, all day, including field trips. There are meals and snacks; there are showers; there are places to take naps. Some participants come several days a week. As memory loss becomes significant, it’s time to consider moving into a place with more services, especially if there are safety concerns. Memory care is typically a secure residence. “You’ll definitely want to do a tour,” says Karen Clay, a social worker with the UW Memory and Brain Wellness Center. “Look around. Do people who live there seem happy? Is staff happy? Do classes sound interesting? Do you like the food, and are there choices?” For family members, Clay also recommends talking about a potential resident’s personality traits and asking what approach would be taken to manage those. For example: “My father is shy, but likes to be around people. How can you help him be more engaged?” Check out common spaces and bedrooms, staffing levels, and amenities. At Quail Park Memory Care in West Seattle, executive vice president David Haack gave me a tour just before the center opened to residents. There were bright red plates in the dining room and tiny indoor gardens with interesting plants. Residential hallways had themes to help people orient themselves: a park bench and chirping bird sounds in one, a marketplace in another. Interesting hats hung on a wall to stimulate conversation. The center is using IN2L (“It’s never too late”) technology. With it, residents’ life stories, interests, and other information can be gathered so staff get to know and understand residents and engage with them through interactive programs. Pets are encouraged, Haack says, and staffing is based on the individual needs of the people who live here. Activities sounded interesting and varied. It all felt appealing and comfortable.

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Left: Residential hallways have themes to help people orient themselves at Quail Park Memory Care communities in West Seattle and Lynnwood. Photo courtesy of Living Care Lifestyles. Right: Myriam Marquez advises people to look for the right place to live before they are ready to move. Photo by Teri Thomson Randall.

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When you tour a place, advises Haack, trust your instinct. Are residents being treated with dignity and respect? A key point is how a potential resident is recognized when accompanied by a family member. Staff should communicate in the same manner with both people; always take note how they address a potential resident. Myriam is starting to consider her next move. She plans to ask one of her daughters to help manage her finances, and she’s researching senior communities that offer both assisted living and memory care. She advises people to look for the right place before they’re ready to move, to be sure there’s an opening when they need it. Many senior living communities provide multiple levels of care, including secure memory care. In the Seattle suburb of Shoreline, the Courtyard at Cristwood includes three sections called neighborhoods: general assisted living, light memory care, and secure care. Residents in all levels interact daily, sharing common spaces, activities, and events. “We make a conscious effort not to segregate populations,” says administrator Debra Hawkins. “They do activities together, and friendships are formed.” Those friendships help smooth the stress of moving between levels of care. Residents in t he lighter memor y care neighborhood come and go as they please, while secure care has its own outdoor space so residents

3rd Act magazine | fall 2018

“Anyone with progressive memory loss will need to eventually make a choice about housing—or their family members will.” can use it without wandering away. In both areas, the focus is on individual needs. “We believe people still have their purpose when they come here,” says Hawkins. “Our personfocused programs honor a person’s past and what they want to continue to do.” Expense is an important factor when choosing your next home. Rates vary depending on things like location, amenities, and staffing. It’s best to determine what you can afford before you start your search, then ask about costs upfront when you call to arrange a tour. There are many options, many questions to ask, and the search might feel overwhelming at first. But here’s the thing: Our generation is getting older with technology. We have the Internet to help us search. And we have people like Myriam leading the way. “I am planning for the future,” she says. “I’ve been in charge of my disease since I came to that fourway stop.” And that’s the way to do it. Priscilla Charlie Hinckley has been a writer and producer in Seattle television and video for 35 years, with a primary interest in stories covering health and medicine, women’s and children’s issues, social justice, and education. She enjoys taking a light-hearted approach to serious topics.

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Aging with Confidence

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ADVICE TO EMERY

A grandfather distills decades of wisdom and love by Charles Johnson

One of my greatest pleasures, as a grandfather, is watching my 6-year-old grandson Emery discover the world around him. He’s a beautiful, brilliant boy, who says that the cluttered study where I co-author with his mother Elisheba stories for a children’s book series, The Adventures of Emery Jones, Boy Science Wonder—yes, the protagonist bears his name—is really his study. There, he plays video games on my PC, writes and draws his own books at my drawing table, does his French lessons, plays his guitar, and regales me with stories about himself and his friends. He’s confident and curious, as comfortable as any kid could be with creativity, and he loves learning. A friend of mine calls him my “mini-me.” So it’s true, then, that I see so much of myself in my grandson. And that, of course, makes me wonder: What will his world be like as he grows into adolescence, then young manhood? Do I have any “wisdom,” based on my 70 years of experience, worth sharing with him? Are there any perennial truths that I—as a trained philosopher, a Buddhist practitioner, and an artist—can impart to Emery that might make his journey through life easier or more rewarding?

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Looking at the problems I see in the world around me, I realize that there are so many things I want to say to him about the goodness, truth, and beauty that life offers. And I want to warn him about the dangers, too, all the minefields I feel he should stay away from in order to know happiness and avoid unnecessary suffering. The problem is that grandfatherly “wisdom” is probably as plentiful as blackberries—I have too much to tell him. And yet, as I think about all I might say, I suspect that the highlights I’ve learned from circling the sun 70 times can be reduced to 10 simple ideas:

1

The first kernel of advice I’d share with my grandson is a challenge that comes down to us from the ancient Greeks: Know thyself. It’s a challenge closely related to another Greek idea: The unexamined life is not worth living. I want Emery to revisit those statements and wrestle with them during every season and stage of his life.

2

As a Buddhist, I want my grandson to glimpse the truth behind what spiritual teacher Ruth King means in her book Mindful of Race: Transforming Racism from the Inside Out when she says “Life is not personal, permanent, or perfect.” Life is not personal because we have no enduring, unchanging self. We are verbs, not nouns. Therefore, we can always change

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our lives to fit new circumstances and reinvent ourselves. Put another way, we are always free. As King says, “We are a series of ever-changing elemental processes, all arising and passing away. Who we are emerges out of interrelating causes and conditions.” What happens in life is not permanent because all phenomenon are ever changing. Finally, life is not perfect. “Shit happens,” writes King, “and we are not in control of having things go our way.”

3

I want my grandson to see that “whatever it is, it’s you.” What do I mean by that? Simply this: Whatever you are experiencing, whether it be a person, place, or thing, you are in one way or another meaningfully connected to it.

4

I would ask Emery to read Dr. Martin Luther King’s favorite sermon, “The Three Dimensions of a Complete Life.” This is the speech that earned King his first job as a pastor at Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery, AL, and he also delivered it in London at St. Paul’s Cathedral when on his way to receive the Nobel Peace Prize. In this speech, he reminded his audience that the first dimension of a complete life was self-acceptance, development of one’s personal resources, and doing life’s work “so well that the living, the dead, or the unborn couldn’t do it any better.” The second dimension was learning “that there is nothing greater than to do something for others.” And the third dimension for King, a theologian and this nation’s most prominent preacher and moral voice in the 1960s, was the quest for the divine, because “We were made for God, and we will be restless until we find rest in him.” Like King, we should never forget or ignore the spiritual register in our lives.

5

I want my grandson to understand that pain is something that comes in life, but suffering is voluntary or optional. In other words, life will bring as much pain as it does pleasure, but pain need not become suffering if we (or our egos) do not dwell upon or nourish the pain (or the pleasures) by becoming attached to them, because pleasure and pain, like everything in this universe, is impermanent.

6

I would advise him to learn the practice of meditation, especially mindfulness training during his adolescent years, and to include

Aging with Confidence

in his life every day the experience of beauty, whether that be in music, nature, a painting, literature, or anywhere he can find it in a world that offers too much in the way of ugliness, falsity, confusion, delusion, and evil.

7

He should also understand the Buddhist wisdom in the phrase “open mouth, already big mistake.” What this means is identical to the Muslim wisdom that tells us that before we speak we should pass whatever we say through three gatekeepers. The three gatekeepers are questions: Is it true? Is it necessary? Will it do no harm? If our speech can pass these three gates, then it is worthy of sharing with others.

8

I would urge him to be a lifelong learner. But also to understand the importance of epistemological humility, that is, to see in a universe as vast and mysterious as ours that our knowledge is always incomplete, and that our views and opinions are merely that—just limited views and opinions shaped by our conditioning in the social world.

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He should also understand that he is already perfect and whole, that nothing needs to be added to his being for him to experience happiness. After all, it takes an entire planet, indeed an entire universe, to support and nourish his being.

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I could go on and on, sharing with Emery his Grandpa’s experience with blue-collar jobs, earning academic degrees, supporting a family, my encounters with workplace bullies, supportive coworkers and friends, with romance, and martial arts training. But I think what is most important is the spirit or intention he brings to whatever he does. And so the final thought I would share with him is that there is no greater experience that we can have than love. Unselfish love for and service to someone or something in this world. For that is the wellspring from which all good things flow. Charles Johnson is a MacArthur Fellow and professor emeritus at the University of Washington. His fiction includes Dr. King’s Refrigerator, Dreamer, Faith and the Good Thing, and Middle Passage, for which he won the National Book Award. His new collection of short stories Night Hawks, was released this spring. He lives in Seattle. ©Charles Johnson all rights reserved

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Hope for our Hurting World

Through the Eyes of My Grandson BY ANDREA COHEN

W

hen I first began this essay about grandchildren, I couldn’t lay to rest my deep anguish about the conflict-ridden and vulnerable planet we are leaving to our younger generation. So I decided to talk with some of my own grandchildren about their perspectives on the state of our world and their hopes for the future. Most important, is there a way we might help each other through these challenging times? Distrust, name-calling, and narrow self-interests are infecting the very fabric of our national discourse. This meanspiritedness is playing out in our families and our schools as well as the political arena. We seem to be at war with each other, and increasingly with the rest of the world. What can we do to heal these rifts? I asked my 19-year-old grandson Vidal about the messy world he is inheriting. “I don’t look at my generation as being ’screwed’ but more that we’re going to be presented with new challenges that the previous generation hasn’t had to deal with,” he said. “We’re just going to have to figure out how to navigate this environment and this country that’s always changing.” As a product of the 1960s college

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scene, I remember the “can-do” mentality that kindled our faith and energized our activism. Vidal, who had just finished his first year in college, reminded me, “This isn’t the first time we’ve had a super-divided country. And it’s not the first time we’ve dealt with a wild, erratic president. It’s not the first time we’ve had costly wars. This is just what happens when you have a country with 300 million people in it. And global responsibilities. There are always going to be problems. And the pendulum always swings.” That last thought of his was what I most needed to balance my own doomsday fears. My thoughts continue circling back to the inspiring March for our Lives rallies that began last spring following the Parkland, FL, shootings. The students’ activism continues to ignite individuals into collective actions. We know that gunning down our nation’s children is an intolerable reality— and something we must all be involved in stopping. These public events are a beautiful example of older people showing up and supporting the activism of the younger generation. Our support can help end the gun violence that has wreaked fear, havoc, and death on the streets of our nation’s cities and in so many sanctuaries of education. But what inspired me the most from

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the March event in Washington, DC, was something that went viral through social media: A lone student courageously led hundreds of thousands of people through more than six minutes of silence—respectfully, tearfully, and meaningfully. As I witnessed that space of sacred remembering, my heart broke open with compassion and love. Perhaps silence and space to feel are among the necessary antidotes to the many disheartening concerns peppering our media and fueling our sense of being overwhelmed. What a lesson for us all—to take the space we need to sense not only the pain of sadness and loss, but also the truth of our interconnectedness. In these experiences, we manage to bridge the differences in age, race, gender, ethnicity, education, privilege, and culture that mark who we are as Americans. Together, we are a mass of humanity who care, led by the youth whose futures hang in the balance. They have so much to teach us and we have so much to share with them. It’s that very intersection of our interests, while acknowledging and embracing our differences, that has the power to change our world. In fact, Vidal told me about the “intersectionality” group that he participates in at college, where people across many divides come together regularly to talk about hot

topics relevant on campus. Even there, he’s witnessed some intolerance and dismissal of perspectives that diverge from the majority opinion. Although he said he has a liberal leaning on most things, he thinks it’s important to listen to people from across all viewpoints. “I may not agree with them,” he said, “but I see where they’re coming from.” To me, that is wisdom for the ages. In the words of Gene Knudsen Hoffman, a Quaker peace worker who pioneered Compassionate Listening as a tool for reconciliation in the 1980s, “no one side is the sole repository of truth. But each of us has a spark of it within. Perhaps, with compassion as our guide, that spark in each of us can become a glow, and then perhaps a light, and we will watch one another in awe as we become illuminated. And then, perhaps, this spark, this glow, this light will become the enlightening energy of love that will save all of us.” When I asked my grandson if he felt at all hopeful about the future, he responded, “It’s the only way I can feel.” After talking with him, I feel that it is more true for me as well. Andrea Cohen facilitates Compassionate Listening workshops locally and internationally, and integrates Compassionate Listening fundamentals into dialogue events, the workplace, and communities in conflict. Andrea is the author of Practicing the Art of Compassionate Listening, a practical guidebook that helps people utilize compassionate listening skills in the heat of daily life challenges.

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GRANDPARENTS

When Mary Mitchell’s two granddaughters moved in with her, she began to feel invisible. Friends stopped calling. Maybe they figured she was too busy to get out. Maybe they were right. And never mind trying to find a babysitter: something she hadn’t had to do in nearly 30 years. One of the girls arrived with a bad toothache, but Mary’s dentist said he couldn’t see her without the child’s parents’ permission. The local elementary school told her the same thing: Sorry, we can’t enroll your granddaughters without their parents’ permission. But their parents—Mary’s son and daughter-in-law—were 3,000 miles away. And they were in jail. BY ANN HEDREEN It had all happened so fast. One PHOTOS BY day, Mary, then 62, was a newly TERRI THOMSON RANDALL retired postal employee with plans to travel. The next, she was the invisible caregiver to Mauricia and Jestina, 7 and 8 years old, who had been suddenly separated from their parents.

YOU DON’T HAVE TO DO IT ALL ON YOUR OWN

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“I got a phone call saying my son and daughterin-law had been arrested in North Carolina,” Mary recalls. “So the next day we had the kids flown back here.” Mary’s son and daughter-in-law were accused of selling drugs via the U.S. mail. Her son was facing up to 40 years in federal prison. (After a year in jail, he was sentenced to six years, her daughterin-law to two.) Mary spent $25,000—money she’d saved to travel—on his legal fees. She set up a legal guardianship so that she could take Mauricia and Jestina to the dentist and doctor, and enroll them in school. They also needed beds, clothes, and school supplies. And they missed their parents. They missed their dad’s cooking. One of the girls started faking illnesses. It was overwhelming. And Mary’s pension was stretched to the breaking point. There are an estimated 43,000 kinship caregivers in the state of Washington, although that number is likely undercounted, according to Barb Taylor of Catholic Community Services, who coordinates

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the King County Kinship Collaboration. Kinship caregivers are caring for their grandkids (or nieces, nephews, or other relatives) because those children’s own parents are unable to do so. In every case, that means a story of heartbreak: death, mental or physical illness, incarceration, drug addiction. Nationwide, 2.6 million children are being raised by grandparents or other relatives. That number has been steadily climbing. Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) says that between 2010 and 2015, the number of children in kinship care rose 24 percent in her state, which has been hard hit by the opioid epidemic. With Sen. Bob Casey (D-Pennsylvania), Collins co-sponsored the Supporting Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Act, which President Donald Trump signed into law July 9. The law intends to create a one-stop shop of resources to support grandparents raising grandchildren. Research shows that “there are better outcomes

for the girls. She also saw a flyer about a support group for kinship caregivers. At first, she wasn’t sure that was where she belonged, but the group quickly became an important part of her life, and it continued to be a mainstay for the two years that her granddaughters lived in her home. Now, she runs a similar group with more than two dozen members for the Atlantic Street Center. Five years ago, Mark and Teru Lundsten were on their way to visit friends in California when they got the call. Mark, then 62 and retired after 27 years of commercial fishing, had just produced and directed his second short film, The Bath. Teru, then 60, was a memoir writer and teacher. They had 24 hours to pick up their 4-year-old granddaughter Jordan, or she would be placed in foster care. The Lundstens canceled their plans and drove home to Anacortes. Mark and Teru had already once been granted custody, after Jordan told them about some of

RAISING GRANDKIDS when a child is placed with relatives instead of strangers,” Taylor explains. When children can’t live with their parents, “staying connected to family is an important part of the healing process.” But the stress—physical, emotional, financial— on grandparents and other kinship caregivers can be enormous, which is why support groups, along with resource “navigators” like Shannon Jones at Catholic Community Services, are so vital. Jones’ job is to listen, and to help caregivers access the support they need, such as Temporary Assistance to Needy Families. “I know these grandparents didn’t ask for it, and neither did the kids,” says Jones. Two decades ago, she was a parent with a drug problem, and her own mom had to step in to raise her daughter Enjunay. Jones’ office wall is papered with photos of Enjunay’s sports career: now 24, she plays football for the Seattle Majestics. Mary Mitchell turned to a south Seattle nonprofit called the Atlantic Street Center for advice and help. There, she found “Miss Paula, the perfect counselor,”

Aging with Confidence

Grandmothers parenting grandchildren support each other at Atlantic Street Center in Seattle. From left: Pat Morris, Theresa Johnson, Mary Mitchell, Linda Johnson, Lisa Moore with granddaughter Taneah, Reshell Wilson, Yasna Osses, and Roe Brumley. Left: Mary Mitchell

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a four-day, grandpas-and-grandkids camping trip with an old friend. On the trip, Jordan regaled the campers with stories from Mark’s childhood, including one involving a cherry-bomb and the window of his mother’s station wagon. But Mark didn’t mind. What could be sweeter than a granddaughter who remembers your stories and constantly cajoles you for more? Meanwhile, Mary Mitchell had her own summer adventure: She took her granddaughters to the K-Con Korean pop music festival in Los Angeles. Mauricia, 14, loves K-pop so much she’s studying Korean. It’s all new to Mary, but she was more than willing to turn it into a grandmaand-grandkids vacation. Like Mark and Jordan’s camping trip, it was a planned adventure. And she really enjoyed that part. Ann Hedreen is a writer, filmmaker, and the author of Her Beautiful Brain, winner of a 2016 Next Generation Indie book award. Ann and her husband, Rustin Thompson, own White Noise Productions and have made more than 150 short films and five feature documentaries together, including Quick Brown Fox: an Alzheimer’s Story. Their newest film, set in Peru and inspired by Ann’s great-uncle, is Zona Intangible.

RESOURCES FOR GRANDPARENTS

Generations United (gu.org) is a national nonprofit dedicated to intergenerational collaboration, including support and advocacy for grandfamily caregivers. Mark and Teru Lundsten with granddaughters Jordan, now 9, and Jacy, who is 15 months.

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the “scary places” her mother, then addicted to methamphetamines, had taken her. When Jordan’s mom, Nina, completed treatment, Jordan was returned to her. But months later, Nina relapsed, and Mark and Teru were again asked to step in. “As a parent, as a mother, Nina would have lost everything, had we not been around to take care of Jordan,” Mark says. “Jordan would have gone into the system had we not been there.” Jordan is now 9 and has a baby sister, Jacy, who is 15 months old. They live with their mom—Nina has been sober for two years. Mark and Teru see Jordan and Jacy every week. “We don’t hold back. We just flat-out adore them,” says Mark. He and Jordan recently returned from

3rd Act magazine | fall 2018

The state of Washington’s Kinship Care website (dshs.wa.gov/kinshipcare) features many useful publications, including Grandparents and Relatives: Do you know about the services and supports for you and the children in your care? This pamphlet— available in several languages—provides a comprehensive list of various resources, benefits, and support services available to relatives raising children. In the Seattle area, the Catholic Community Services’ King County Kinship Collaboration (ccsww.org) offers links to resources, oneon-one advice, support groups and other networking opportunities. Click on “Child, Youth, and Family Services,” then “Kinship.”

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WORLD THROUGH NEW EYES

THE

Skip-Gen Travel is on the Rise by Ann Randall “Your Auntie Mame is going to open doors for you, Patrick. Doors you never even dreamed existed. Oh, what times we’re going to have! What vistas we’re going to explore together!” Worldly Auntie Mame and her sensible nephew, Patrick, may be fictitious characters of books, stage, and screen but they embody an increasingly popular form of travel. Whether “skip-generation” travel means grandparents traveling with grandchildren, aunts and uncles on tour with nieces and nephews, or godparents who take a promised milestone trip with godchildren, skip-gen travel benefits both age groups. It’s a bonding experience without the distraction of parental intervention, friends, sports, or jobs. Done right, skip-gen trips help everyone experience the destination via another age perspective, and it can create a travel memory to outlast any material gift. A skip-gen trip needs to fit the interests, energy, and

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3rd Act magazine | fall 2018

abilities of both age groups. Those who don’t want to organize the journey can call on a growing number of travel companies who take generational differences into account. Road Scholar, the travel university for lifelong learners ages 50+, also specializes in intergenerational travel. Their current catalogue offers 28 vacations designed for skip-gen experiences ranging from rafting Idaho’s Salmon River and jewelry making in Massachusetts to exploring Lyon and Provence in France. Each trip has a recommended age for the younger generation and a full range of activities for both age groups. Smithstonian Journeys , the travel program affiliated with the venerable Smithsonian Institution, offers a range of all-inclusive, educational, intergenerational travel experiences. Their Yellowstone and Tetons trip features a stay at a working ranch with optional activities. One generation can learn to fly fish while the other takes off on a trail ride tailored to their ability. Tauck Bridges also tailors trips to multiage interests. Its Castles and Kings: London and Paris trip includes opportunities to see the iconic Tower of London and Eiffel Tower, along with the chance to ride bikes through the Royal Parks of London, play a spy game in a London hotel formerly frequented by the British Secret Service, travel by speedboat along the Thames, and take the high-speed Eurostar train through the Channel Tunnel. Owned by a family who grew up traveling together, Journeys International advertises their

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multigenerational trips as “not simplified or watereddown versions of our general trips. They are very full, very active, and very flexible.” Senior and junior travelers looking for immersion travel can expect to meet local families, visit schools, and try out cultural crafts and games. Cruise lines offering children’s programs, teen activities, and varied choices for local tours are another option for a packaged travel experience that caters to two generations. Prefer independent travel? Make sure both age groups are involved in planning the itinerary. This provides an opportunity for you to bond before the trip, and jointly brainstorming and researching what to see, where to stay, and how to travel within a budget can be as valuable a learning experience as the trip itself. Exploring new vistas Auntie Mame-style doesn’t have to be an expensive once-in-a-lifetime trip abroad. Seasoned travelers offer a variety of lower-cost suggestions that focus on bridging the generations and building memories: • Choose a state or large city neither generation has visited. Research together what to see, where to stay, and how to include the preferences of both age groups during your stay. • Plan a nearby themed trip based on a common interest of both generations. Are you both interested in fashion? Music? History of the wild west? Flamenco dancing? Baseball? Train travel? Dinosaur fossils? • Include joint adventure experiences in your

Aging with Confidence

joint trip. Here’s an opportunity to show your 16-

year old nephew that you’re an enthuisiastic lifelong learner who’s willing to zipline, whitewater raft, ride the extreme rollercoaster, or swim with the dolphins. • Form your own mini book club to read and discuss age-appropriate books and travel guides about your destination before leaving. Once you’re there, take turns being the tour guide. • Include shared activities that aren’t joint interests to expand each other’s horizons. You may be surprised at how much you learn about your granddaughter by listening to her roadtrip music playlist, and she may find that she shares your taste in ethnic foods.

Skip-generation travel can mean grandparents traveling with grandchildren, aunts and uncles on tour with nieces and nephews, or godparents who take a promised milestone trip with godchildren. Successful skip-generation trips require flexibility and open-mindedness, and they can generate excitement that you, too, will be experiencing something new. Be Auntie Mame-like in attitude. “Paris mon coeur!” she exclaimed to her nephew on his first day in Paris. “To see this fabulous, civilized city again through your young, blue eyes. Heaven!” Ann Randall is an independent traveler and writer who loves venturing to out-of-the-way locales from Azerbaijan to Zimbabwe. A former educator, she now observes international elections and does volunteer work in India. Her articles have appeared in online and print publications and she maintains a blog, PeregrineWoman.com.

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No Grandkids? No Problem! BY DORI GILLAM

When I became a mother, I assumed one day I would be a grandma. But when my daughter was still dating and unmarried at 33, I settled into thinking that being a grandma would not be in the cards for me. What is it like to be childless or grand-childless in our family-obsessed culture, when it seems everyone is constantly posting grandkid photos to Facebook and planning kindergarten graduation parties replete with caps and gowns? And is it ever possible to see just one photo of your friend’s newest grandchild? To find out, I asked 25 people from all walks of life if they regretted not having kids or grandkids. I learned a lot. Only one of the 25 wondered what life might have been like with children. The rest talked about the positives they enjoy by not having kids or

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grandkids: These include more financial freedom, less stress, and more mobility for travel or job changes. “I’m at a place where I think of grandkids the way some people feel about pets,” says Mike D. “I love them, but I don’t want one.” In fact, rather than using the term grandchild-less, they say “grandchildfree.” Still, being child-free or grandchildfree can open you up to a level of vulnerability and judgment, simply because it is not mainstream—and sometimes you feel left out. “Sports events and family get-togethers meant that our friends went off to ’Planet Parenthood,’ as we called it,” says Wendy. As children grew and left home, some of these friendships rekindled. Now the second tiny shoe has dropped—as friends become grandparents, it’s bye-bye friendships

again. “It might be nice to be invited (to join), occasionally, when a friend is babysitting grandkids or taking them to the park,” she laments. One perceived downside of not having offspring is not having a natural medical advocate or caregiver. A few people I spoke with have no family they can count on, nor can they afford to hire caregiving help. Mike and Brad hope their nieces and nephews will step up in some ways. Carolyn has lots of family and knows they will take care of her. Some older people are financially secure enough to arrange and pay for their own care. One person’s wise observation: “Having kids and grandkids is not a free pass to getting cared for in old age.” That’s why it’s important for all of us to build strong social support systems as we age and plan ahead for our care. What about leaving a legacy? Sally gives “legacy envelopes” to nieces and nephews that include photos and letters from previous generations. Carolyn has compiled photobooks, statistics, and stories about ancestors. Vicki and Gerry help nieces and nephews with costs on school projects and sports equipment,

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and even pay airfare for them to come visit. These “family grants” require nothing but a thank-you note. Not everyone feels the need to have something of themselves live on. When Rebecca’s daughter decided not to have children, her daughter asked, “If I don’t have children, you are not going to be a grandmother. Are you OK with that?” Rebecca replied that if her daughter was OK not having children, then she was OK not being a grandmother. Do these child-free and grandchildfree adults engage with younger generations when they don’t have a built-in supply? Many do. Some spend entire vacations with their godchildren, nieces and nephews, or grandnieces and nephews. Others host exchange students. Barb enjoys “adopted” families who invite her to their family

Not every older adult wants to spend time with young children. For those who do, here are some resources: • Silverkite.us • ReadingPartners.org • AARP.org • Volunteer at your local elementary school • Learn about mentoring at GenerationtoGeneration.org • Be a Foster Grandparent. See NationalService.gov, then click on programs. gatherings. Lee says he and his wife get their “grandchild fix” through their neighbor’s kids, who treat them like grandparents. He says, “Being family gets you family.”

Making opportunities to engage with younger generations at your own pace is helpful. Ron S. had a cashier job on Capitol Hill that kept him in touch with young adults because of its proximity to Seattle Central College and Cornish College for the Arts. Now he tutors ESL. Full disclosure: Since I volunteered to write this article, I’ve learned I will become a grandma in November. I hope I’ll remember to invite my friends without grandchildren to join some of our activities, but I won’t be offended if they’re not interested. And I promise I’ll show them just one photo of my new grandchild. Dori Gillam is a speaker and writer on positive aging. She’s worked for Sound Generations (a local non-profit serving older adults) and AARP. She is a speaker for Washington Humanities, facilitates Wisdom Cafes throughout King County, WA, and is a member of the Seattle Age Friendly Task Force.

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Aging with Confidence

8/16/18 11:52 AM

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WESTERN WASHINGTON

BIRDING HOTSPOTS

See Our Region Through This Fun Year-Round Hobby BY ANGELA MINOR PHOTOS BY ROBIN EDWARDS

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One of our most profound U.S. wildlife protection laws, the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, turned 100 this year. This 1918 law has saved several species from extinction and protects hundreds of millions of birds from harmful human activities. Six million of us age 55 and up take birding trips away from home each year. So to celebrate the Bird Treaty Act’s centennial in Western Washington, I reached out to Wendy Walker, community engagement manager of Seattle Audubon, who gathered and generously shared insider tips from experienced local birders. “We have a fantastic variety of habitats and hundreds of avian species from the long coastlines of Puget Sound and the Pacific Ocean to expansive wildlife refuges on the Olympic coast to the southwest corner of the state,” she

3rd Act magazine | fall 2018

BLACK OYSTERCATCHER

says. “You can spot seabirds on a ferry ride to an historic lighthouse; explore some of the best areas in North America for wintering raptors; or find high species diversity in our city parks. With 25 Audubon chapters across the state, visitors have prime access to local suggestions wherever you go.” The Seattle Audubon’s service to avian and habitat conservation also began over a century ago, in 1916. Walking in tandem over the past century, this organization and protective measures like the Migratory Bird Treaty Act ensure that we can keep our binoculars focused and field guides at the ready! Below, Walker gives us some terrific birding notes for the three ecoregions in our backyard. Northwest Coast Ecoregion Ocean Shores, a six-mile peninsula with multiple habitats, is a shorebird haven particularly during the fall migration. The Ocean City State Park is perfect for camping. Pick a spot

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3 OSPREY 1 2

BIRDING HOTSPOTS 1 - Ocean Shores; 2 - Bottle Beach State Park; 3 - Billy Frank Jr. Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge; 4 - Samish Flats; 5 - Point No Point; 6 - Snoqualmie Wildlife Area trail at Stillwater

MARBLED GODWIT

on the west side loops, fall asleep to the sound of the surf, and awaken to an intricate dawn chorus. Bottle Beach State Park is an Audubon IBA (Important Bird Area). You’ll find thousands of birds including western sandpiper, dunlin, semipalmated sandpiper, ruddy turnstone, red knot, greater yellowlegs, and black-bellied plover. East of the park, explore the willow thickets for migrant passerines and the marshes for Virginia rails. Puget Trough Ecoregion The Billy Frank Jr. Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge is a 762-acre protected river delta between Olympia and Tacoma. There are easily accessible trails along a freshwater pond and a raised boardwalk right out into the estuary. For the height of species diversity, come during spring and fall migration. My favorite sightings there include peregrine falcons and northern harriers hunting the marshes; a nesting greathorned owl; and hundreds of ducks and geese.

Aging with Confidence

WESTERN WASHINGTON BIRD LIST HIGHLIGHTS Osprey Black Turnstone Snowy Plover Northern Shoveler Black Oystercatcher Calliope Hummingbird Short-eared Owl Wandering Tattler Ruffed Grouse Marbled Murrelet Wood Duck American Dipper Red Knot Bald Eagle Pygmy Nuthatch Snow Goose Dunlin Pileated Woodpecker Sanderling Pacific Wren

Western Sandpiper Trumpeter and Tundra Swans Anna’s Hummingbird Marbled Godwit Chestnut-backed Chickadee Greater Yellowlegs Pigeon Guillemot Black-bellied Plover Ruby–crowned Kinglet Short-billed Dowitcher Steller’s Jay Black-headed Grosbeak Whimbrel Swainson’s Thrush Tufted Puffin Wilson’s Snipe Marsh Wren Warbling Vireo Black-throated, Gray, and Orange-crowned Warblers Black-capped Chickadee

Join local birders each Wednesday morning at 8 a.m. for guided exploration. While you’re there, check out Junior Duck Stamp winning artwork in the visitor center. Between Bellingham and Seattle, Samish Flats is the winter migrating raptor hotspot, along

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WHIMBREL

STELLER’S JAY

BALD EAGLE

TRUMPETER SWAN

TUFTED PUFFIN

with a destination for massive flocks of snow geese and ducks. Visit from late October to late March for high drama. Local birders go for a “five-falcon day” in one trip to see if they can spy American kestrel, merlin, peregrine, and the less common prairie falcon and gyrfalcon. Take a Washington State Ferry ride to Kitsap Peninsula and explore Point No Point, where you can see the oldest Puget Sound lighthouse in continuous operation. Arrive early at the Edmonds Ferry dock to find excellent birding at the southern boardwalk. Once on

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the spit, look for ancient and marbled murrelet, and watch the marshes for passerines. The area is known for adding rarities to your life list. You might even see resident or migrating whales along the way. North Cascades Ecoregion From the community of Duvall all the way to North Bend, you’ll enjoy a well-maintained gravel trail along the Snoqualmie River. We recently accessed the Snoqualmie Wildlife Area trail at Stillwater and found 50 species within six miles. In the marsh and wooded habitat, we saw osprey hunting the

CHESTNUT-BACKED CHICKADEE

ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER

river, Wilson’s and orange-crowned warblers, American bitterns in the marsh, multiple pairs of wood ducks, several red-headed sapsuckers, and a nesting hairy woodpecker. “No matter where you stay in Washington, you’ll experience rich habitats and impressive species diversity. Come birding with us,” says Walker. Angela Minor has lived, traveled, (and birded) in the U.S. , the Caribbean, and seven European countries. Freelance travel writer is her third career, following teacher and small business owner. She serves as field editor with Birds & Blooms and “Park Watch” writer for 10,000 Birds; and authors the Bird Watcher’s Digest state park birding series.

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VIETNAM Join 3rd Act publishers David and Victoria Marshall on a 20-day trip to Vietnam! Our small group (16 people or less) Overseas Adventure Travel tour will visit Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), tour the Vietnam countryside, and cruise spectacular Halong Bay. We’ll take a cooking class, enjoy a home-hosted dinner, explore UNESCO World Heritage sites, and take a boat tour through a traditional fishing village. We will visit local markets, temples, the Mekong Delta, and so much more.

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A Woman of Many

CC BY KAREN WHITE-WALKER

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Exactly 50 years to the day that Dr. Luther King spoke at Kleinhan’s Music Hall in Buffalo, NY, a world-renowned author was wheeled onto the stage. Almost 90 minutes later, the audience of over 2,400 had witnessed greatness and an evening of laughter. Laughter? Impossible. Unbelievable. I mean, the greatness was understood, but the soft laughter that resonated throughout the crowd from someone whose incredibly powerful books are heavy, dark, raw, and depressing? “I write the best sex scenes,” she chuckled and added, “but not too graphic.” Of course, I’m only paraphrasing, because there are so many things that her audience wanted to remember and walk away with. Walk away. I hadn’t realized that Toni Morrison, now 87, is confined to a wheelchair. How did she appear so tall, stately, and powerful, yet so humble? It was obvious that she commanded the stage, for there were no bored deep sighs, squirming in one’s seat, or checking the time.

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The countless awards and accolades bestowed upon her could turn others of her caliber haughty, but not Morrison. I mean, how many of us have ever even been in the presence of a recipient of both the Nobel and Pulitzer Prizes? I’ve attended many a lecture by other worldfamous figures, but if I name them, that’s comparing and is that fair? “I will speak ill of no man and all the good I know of everybody,” Benjamin Franklin once said. (No, I wasn’t around to hear him speak.) Morrison said that she started writing rather late in life—at the age of 39. “Although now at my age, that sounds pretty young,” she quipped. She was a ferocious reader as a child, thanks to her family’s encouragement and example. I wasn’t surprised. Isn’t that a prerequisite of truly remarkable writers? Especially poignant was her account of when she was 10 years old and strolling home with her little friend and, even at that tender age, they both took on that formidable task of discussing if there www.3rdActMag.com


My Grandfather Said really was a God. “Chloe, do you believe in God?” the little black girl asked, using Toni’s birth name. “Yes, I do,” she answered with real conviction. “I don’t. Do you have proof that there’s a God?” “No—no, I don’t.” “I have proof that there isn’t a God.” Here is where Morrison, in a light tone announces to the audience, “You might know that she would have proof and I didn’t!” Toni—I mean Chloe—asked, “What’s your proof?” "For two years now I’ve been praying to God for blue eyes and ... and it never happened.” Thus the inspiration for The Bluest Eye, her first published novel. We all sensed that the lecture was coming to an end. Morrison concluded by saying that when she returned home, she would be working on a speech that she would be presenting at Princeton. “Just before I left, I received a call that they were going to dedicate a wing to me and call it Morrison Hall. And what did I do?” she confessed. “I gasped and told that gentleman that he couldn’t call it by that horrible name, because that was my ex’s name and I hated him!” I saw the color of truth and the spunk to speak it. My daughter and I stood in line for over an hour for her to autograph each of our books. Afterward, as I braved the cold blustery winds outside, my tired brain—so tired a few hours before—was suddenly stimulated, my body now rejuvenated and my heart brimming. One woman, one lecture, and a profound feeling of well-being, and I saw the color of shared peace. Could it be that maybe Dr. Martin Luther King’s spirit was there, too? And a little part of his dream was being realized? Yes, it was a very memorable evening—a catharsis for the negative emotions that we sometimes feel from all the upheaval in today’s weary world. But on that night, our hearts felt light.

BY NAN TOBY TYRRELL

My grandfather said to eat an onion every morning and take a shot of whiskey at night. It worked for him. He was strong as the Russian songs he sang to me.

Mine Kleine Madala Schloven, schloven

Early in winter my grandfather walked slowly around our neighborhood. He paused to speak; he, a prince of stories, weaving tales of pogroms, beatings, and village fires. He’d look at me with a mischievous grin and toss a last minute joke with a wink. In his third floor walk-up he sat on his worn chair, hunched over. His fingers cradled the needle as it crept through peacock blue lapels. Each summer his body was the first to taste the ocean in June, even though he couldn’t swim. He clung to the rope, dunked his brawny body up and down as I watched from the shore to spot his white mane sparkling. I still see him, dressed in his Sabbath best, his fedora tipped at a roguish angle, holding his head a little nearer to God. Nan Toby Tyrrell earned her Master of Arts at the University of Arizona and has spent most of her life teaching. Her passion is playing piano for people with Alzheimer’s, and others, in Port Townsend.

Karen White-Walker is a published writer and playwright. Her stories have appeared in numerous newspapers and magazines across the country and eight of her plays have been produced.

Aging with Confidence

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MY THIRD ACT

Why We’re All Yearning for Yarns Novice Storyteller Learns that People are Drawn to True Tales Like Moths to a Flame BY SILVANA CLARK

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fter an exhilarating year of full-time travel, I found myself restless for a creative outlet once my husband and I returned home. Against my better judgment, I started looking at Pinterest, hopping from topics such as how to make homemade balm for cracked heels to ideas on cooking 31 meals in one afternoon. One day I got an alert saying, “Here’s a topic you might like.” And like it I did: Pinterest captured my attention with pages of ideas titled “Bold Decorating.”

Moth events are usually held twice monthly in Seattle at the Fremont Abbey Arts Center and St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral. Ten winners of the monthly Seattle Moth will be participating in Moth’s GrandSlam on October 21 at the Moore Theatre in Seattle. It will be Clark’s first GrandSlam. For dates and upcoming topics (which include “Rivals,” “Disguises,” and “Joy”), search for Seattle at themoth.org/events.

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One post suggested painting rooms in your house bright red. I quickly became a “bold” decorator, purchasing red paint at Lowe’s— bright, shiny, fire-engine red. I must admit, that color certainly perked up our entry way and dining room! My husband encouraged me to try other endeavors before I continued the blazing red theme throughout the rest of the house. I tried a jogging class, but I felt like a tired, plodding Clydesdale. A crochet class to make hats for a “Don’t Shake Your Baby” campaign produced a knotted mass of yarn. I helped with a few volunteer projects, but nothing gave me that adrenalin rush feeling of “I love this!” That all changed when my daughter told me about a storytelling program she attended called Moth StorySlam. George Dawes Green, the man who started the program 20 years ago, had friends over for a storytelling night. As people shared stories, they were joined by numerous moths coming in through a hole in the screen door. And thus began The Moth story hour. You probably won’t find too many moths at Moth

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events now, but you will find a group of likeminded, enthusiastic storytellers. (Or “story listeners,” for those who enjoy sitting in the audience.) Each program has a general theme such as “Ego” or “Caught.” Participants know the theme in advance so they can plan what to say. Want to tell a story? Simply put your name in a hat. If your name is called, you are one of the 10 lucky storytellers. To me, that sounded fun, so I naively prepared a story before actually attending a program in Seattle. I’ve written a dozen books but never spent so much time crafting a few paragraphs as I did to perfect that true, 5-minute story with the theme “Do Over.” The energy in the room of 250 people increased my excitement as I put my name in as a potential storyteller. The f irst person told a hilarious story about failing dismally in a school talent show. I quickly noticed the audience’s enthusiasm in supporting the storytellers. T h e s e c o n d s p e a ke r apologized for forgetting his lines, and people yelled encouragingly, “It’s OK! You can do it.” When he continued, the audience applauded. It didn’t matter if you were a retired engineer or recent high school graduate. The story is what counted. I’m almost embarrassed to admit how excited I was when my name was called. I practically skipped on stage. My opening lines were, “I was fired from my first job when I was 11. My mother fired me. My job was to be her accomplice and decoy as she shoplifted clothes, TVs, bikes, and one car.” I went on to tell how my mother was upset at my refusal to help shoplift on a regular basis. So she did what any mother would do: She sent me to live with relatives in Germany, where they had me selling American cigarettes on the black market.

Aging with Confidence

(So much for a do-over.) The audience loved my story and afterward, a Moth producer asked me to participate in a comedy show. The next day another producer invited me to participate in his event. At 64 years old, I had gigs! I’ve now participated in many storytelling events. The Moth is my favorite platform because of the structured yet free-wheeling atmosphere. The winner of each StorySLAM competes in the GrandSLAM against other winners. And I am a three-time StorySLAM winner! Storytelling at The Moth provides an outlet to be creative in writing and to deliver a story specific

George Dawes Green, the man who started the program 20 years ago, had friends over for a storytelling night. As people shared stories, they were joined by numerous moths coming in through a hole in the screen door. And thus began The Moth story hour. to your personality. Some riveting storytellers have a smooth, calm delivery. Others, like me, get a bit rambunctious. In one story I incorporated the famous “Elaine Dance” from Seinfeld. With Moth programs in 400 cities around the world, anyone has the opportunity to experience storytellers sharing humor, sorrow, and vulnerability. It may even keep you from painting your dining room bright red! Silvana Clark presents keynotes and workshops on “Creativity Concepts” around the world. She has written 12 books, had her dog star in TV commercials, and appeared on the FOX reality show, Trading Spouses”. Recently, she and her husband started doing emergency foster care for children in their home in Bellingham.

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TASTEFULLY YOURS

’Tis the Season for

Comfort Foods

BY REBECCA CRICHTON

In the beginning, there was food! Before Rebecca Crichton worked for Boeing, taught leadership development, or became executive director of the Northwest Center for Creative Aging, she was a caterer, recipe developer, and food journalist. She has taught cooking to seniors and others, and she can reel off food ideas and recipes for any part of a meal or event. She believes in easily prepared, healthy, and taste-filled food that delights and satisfies.

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I love the tastes of fall. The season delivers the bounty of the fall harvest, the return of warm spices, and the satisfaction of richly flavored comfort foods. Starting with Halloween and continuing until the New Year rings in, ’tis the season to be prepared for festive gatherings. Whether you are invited to intimate dinner parties or lavish family spreads, you can be ready to contribute to all of them with a cluster of easily made-ahead

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or quickly assembled additions that fall into my newly-coined category of KISSSS… Keep it Sweet, Spicy, Salty, and Savory. You don’t have to give up your annual holiday cookie baking or candy making. Those are delightful activities to share with friends, families, and children throughout the season. But assembling a cluster of special holiday treats to grace an appetizer table for either impromptu or planned events can be easy to do by yourself without a lot of fuss. Try these recipes for Spiced Nuts, Brandied Fruit, Pickled Grapes, and Candied Cranberries and share these “holiday KISSSS-es” with everybody you love!

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Brandied Fruit This is Amanda Hesser’s take on her mother’s alcohol-soaked fruit. Her mother used gin, but Hesser suggests brandy or other spirit of your choosing. She comments: “The recipe is mindlessly simple—layer your favorite dried fruits with some spices, cover with booze.” She points out that you may need to replenish the gin or brandy after a day or two, as the fruit soaks up the alcohol. And the fruit is best consumed within a few weeks, before the fruit’s sugars begin turning the booze to syrup. She suggests passing it alongside a cheese course, or spooning it over ice cream or cake (with some of the macerating liquid!). Ingredients:

1 cup dried figs 1 cup plump prunes 1 cup dried apricots 1/2 cup dried cherries 1/2 cup raisins 2 tsp. raw sugar 4 star anise pods 8 thin slices ginger 8 long strips clementine or other orange peel 2 cups brandy or gin Instructions:

• In a large bowl, combine the dried fruit. • To a lidded 1-quart glass jar, add 1/4 of the fruit. Add 1/4 of the sugar, star anise, ginger, and clementine peel. Repeat three more times. Pour over enough brandy to just cover the fruit. Seal the jar with a lid. Let sit for a week before eating. • For gifting, divide the fruit into small jars. Remember to label them and include your name! Makes about 1 quart

Aging with Confidence

Sugared Cranberries

Tarragon Pickled Grapes One of my treasured cookbooks is Fancy Pantry by Helen Witty. Published in 1986, it is still one of the best resources for unusual and delicious preserved foods. It remains available from a variety of online sources. If you like using a “real” cookbook, this is one to have. Ingredients:

3 ½ cups firm seedless grapes— red, black, green—choose which you like best 8 sprigs fresh tarragon 1 ½ cups white vinegar 2 Tbs. sugar 1 ½ tsp. fine salt Instructions:

• Rinse grapes well, dry with a clean towel, and destem. • Jars and lids should be very clean and dry. • In a small saucepan, combine vinegar, sugar, and salt; bring to a boil over medium high heat. • Place one tarragon sprig into bottom of jar and add half of grapes. Tuck in the second tarragon sprig and fill with grapes 1/2" to 3/4" from top of jar. • Fill with hot pickling solution to cover grapes plus a little more; grapes should be floating in the solution. • Grapes are ready in two days and can be refrigerated for two weeks.

It wouldn’t be the holiday season without cranberries. These are so easy and so pretty you will want to make them often and use them countless ways, from garnishes to snacks. Ingredients:

1/2 cup water 3/4 cup cane sugar, divided 1 cup fresh cranberries Instructions:

• In a small sauce-pot, whisk water and 1/2 cup sugar to combine. Bring just to a simmer and whisk until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and stir in the cranberries so that they are coated evenly with the sugar syrup. Cover and let steep for 10 minutes. • Strain, reserving the syrup*. Separate the cranberries and place on a piece of parchment paper on a wire cooling rack. Allow to dry for one hour. • Place the remaining sugar on a plate and transfer the cranberries to the plate, rolling the cranberries in the sugar to coat. They will be less sticky as they get coated. • Place the cranberries in a lidded container with a little bowl of rice. The rice helps keep the cranberries fresh by absorbing any moisture in the air. They should stay fresh for two days, if they last that long! If you notice the cranberries “weeping,” freshen them up by tossing them with sugar again. Double or triple the recipe as needed. *Reserve the sugar syrup for cocktails or other uses.

Makes one quart. Divide into smaller batches and give as gifts.

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Spiced Nuts Learn this basic approach to quickly prepared spiced nuts, then experiment with different spice mixes. Ingredients:

1 lb. unsalted mixed nuts (such as pecans, macadamias, walnuts, unblanched almonds, and cashews) ¼ cup shortening—melted butter, melted coconut oil, or olive oil ¼ cup sweetener—brown sugar, white sugar, maple syrup, or honey Instructions:

• Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees and have a baking pan ready to use. (Line it with parchment or aluminum foil for easy clean-up.) • In a large bowl, whisk together the shortening of your choice (melted coconut oil, butter, or olive oil) with the sweetener (brown sugar, sugar, honey, or maple syrup) and whichever spice mixture you are using. (See below for suggested partnering.) • Add nuts to the bowl and toss well to coat. • Lay spice-coated nuts in an even layer on baking pan and bake for 20-25 minutes, tossing once halfway

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through the cooking process. • Serve warm or store in an air-tight container for up to seven days. • For gifting, pack in small jars or plastic bags tied with colorful ribbon or yarn. 1 lb. of nuts should give you four 4-oz. servings—a good size for gifting. Spice Mix Suggestions:

Traditional: 1 tsp. cinnamon, ¼ tsp. allspice, ⅛ tsp. nutmeg, 1/8 tsp. ground cloves. ½ tsp. salt (butter and brown sugar) Orange and spice: ¼ cup fresh orange juice, 1 ½ tsp. salt, 1 ¼ tsp. cinnamon, ¼ tsp. ground red pepper, ¼ tsp. mace (butter or coconut oil and white sugar) Rosemary: 3 Tbs. chopped fresh rosemary, 1 ½ tsp. ground cumin, 1 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. fresh black pepper, ¼ tsp. cayenne pepper (olive oil and dark brown or white sugar) Indian: 1 Tbs. garam masala, 1 tsp. cinnamon, 1 tsp. ground cardamom, 1 tsp. salt, 1/2 tsp. cayenne (coconut oil and brown sugar) Moroccan: 2 tsp. Moroccan spice mix, 2 tsp. cumin, 2 tsp. cinnamon, 1 tsp. coriander, ½ tsp. smoked paprika (butter or coconut oil, brown sugar or honey)

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The Powerful

Purple Grape

Fragrant fall fruit has many health benefits BY NANCY J. SCHAAF

What does autumn smell like? For people like me who live near Concord grape vineyards, fall officially begins when these classic purple grapes release their sweet fragrance. Many Washingtonians are surprised to learn that our state is the nation’s leading producer of Concord grape juice with over 21,000 acres of Concord grape vineyards. Trent Ball, an agriculture instructor at Yakima Valley College, says that in 2016, Washington produced over 194,000 tons of Concord grapes, of which about 11,200 tons were organic. These deep purple grapes have thick, sour “slip skins” which separate from the pulp and a juicy, sweet interior. The aromatic grapes, harvested September through late October, contain a high number of polyphenols providing many health benefits. Adding purple to your diet is a delicious way to improve heart health. Concord grapes found primarily

in grape juice and grape jellies and jams make these products rich in nutrients and antioxidants. A recent study published in Nutrients indicates a “clear relationship between consumption of even modest serving sizes of Concord grape juice, flavonoid intake, and effects on risk factors for cardiovascular disease.” Other benefits abound: Research suggests that Concord grapes promote healthy circulation and contain various health-protecting antioxidants including resveratrol and flavonoids. These contribute to heart health in reducing the risk of blood clots and low-density lipoprotein or “bad” cholesterol, as well as maintaining healthy blood pressure. Not only are grapes heart-healthy, but research indicates Concord grapes influence cognitive health since the polyphenols in Concord grapes help support flexible arteries, which may promote healthy blood flow to the brain. Additional studies indicate that a diet rich in antioxidants, such as those found in fruits and their juices, can slow and possibly reverse agerelated cognitive decline. It’s easy to add some purple to your diet. Concord grape juice—100 percent juice, with no added sugar— is available in grocery stores. It’s yummy by itself or when added to various recipes. Make a smoothie by combining Concord grape juice with yogurt and a banana. Or freeze the juice in ice-cube trays and add it to a glass of water for sweetness and flavor. Concord jelly and preserves are scrumptious paired with peanut butter on toast or topping pancakes. Eating a handful of the sweet fruit provides the same health benefits as juice but with added dietary fiber. Look for Concord grape pies at local farmers markets. Concord grapes promote healthy circulation and improve your cognition and mood. If you are in a region where these powerful purple grapes grow, try to get a taste of them while they’re fresh this fall. If you miss the harvest, you’ll find plenty of products like grape juice and jelly so you can enjoy the delicious flavor and reap the benefits of Concord grapes all year. Nancy J. Schaaf is a retired registered nurse and educator. Her articles have been published in numerous national magazines. Nancy enjoys writing, traveling, riding motorcycles, and exercise classes.

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Concord Grape Pie from Home in the Finger Lakes by Jennifer Morrisey Prep Time: 1 hour 30 minutes Cook Time: 1 hour Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes Yield: 8 servings Ingredients:

1 recipe or your favorite double crust pie dough prepared 1 ½ lbs. of Concord grapes (after removing from stems) ¾ cup + 2 tbsp (6.0 oz) sugar 2 ½ tbsp cornstarch 1 ½ tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice 1 tbsp unsalted butter, softened Instructions:

• On a lightly floured work surface, roll one half of a double crust pie dough into a 15-inch round. Fit dough into a 9-inch pie plate, pressing it into the edges. Trim to a 1-inch overhang all around. Cover with plastic wrap; chill pie shell until firm, about 30 minutes. Repeat process for rolling out dough for the top crust. Transfer to a baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until you are ready to assemble the pie. • Wash grapes and discard any that are under-ripe, damaged, and blemished. • Remove the skins from the grapes by pressing them between your thumb and forefinger. Put the skinless grapes in a medium saucepan. Reserve the skins in a small bowl. • Gently mash the grape pulp in the medium saucepan to release their juice. Cook over medium low heat until grapes come to a full boil, and simmer, covered, for 5 minutes. • Remove from heat and allow to cool completely. Press the grapes through a fine sieve and discard the pits. • In a heavy bottomed pot: Combine the grape pulp, grape peels, and all the remaining ingredients. (You’ll have about 1 ⅓ cups of pulp—add everything else and you’ll have about 2 cups.) Bring to a simmer over low heat, stirring continually until the filling is slightly thickened and bubbly. Remove from heat and allow to cool completely. • Preheat the oven to 400°F with a rack in the bottom third of the oven with a pizza stone or baking sheet on it.

Aging with Confidence

• Transfer the cooked filling to the prepared pie shell. Moisten the edges of the pie crust with water and attach the top crust, crimping the edges to seal the crust. • Cut six small slits in the crust to act as vents. Place pie on the pizza stone, protect the edges with a pie ring, and bake for 30 minutes at 400° F and then reduce heat to 375° F and bake an additional 25-30 minutes until the filling is bubbling. Cool on a wire rack for at least 3 hours before cutting. For additional recipes and ideas on using grapes, click the “more” tab at grapesociety.org. Find more of Jennifer’s recipes at Homeinthefingerlakes.com

Concord grape juice nutrition

One 8 oz glass of Concord grape juice contains: • 250 mg of polyphenols • 100% RDA of Vitamin C • 2 servings of fruit • 40 or more Concord grapes

fall 2018

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THE CONNECTING POWER OF I was delighted with Elliot, 13, helped me the first sock, half full of get sand from under sand, that my 11-yeart h e Po nt d u G a rd , old granddaughter, the ancient Roman Jen, brought me from aqueduct in southern her vacation in Mexico. Ten years later, she took time from France. Later we tested the sand with 5 percent acid vinegar. windsurfing to collect sand from Cuba’s remote Cayo The bubbling sand verified the limestone, typical of that Guillermo. area’s bedrock. Elliot’s vial of sand from the shore of the The grandkids laughed when I started collecting sand Gardon River is now a poignant, personal, and inexpensive samples, but it piqued their curiosity enough that now most reminder—a lifetime memory of our visit to that UNESCO are active participants in my obsession. As they grow, they World Heritage structure. continually bring me samples. Several have While grandson Alex was kite boarding at La BY GRIGGS IRVING started collections of their own. Ventana, Baja, I discovered a 100-yard patch John, in his early 20s, took time while of 50 percent black sand that looked like soot. vacationing with his sweetie on the Turks & Caicos Islands to Under close inspection, verified with a magnet, we proved collect an envelope of Caribbean sand. “Look what I brought the “soot” to be grains of magnetite, a magnetic ore of you, Grandpa!” Note he said, “brought,” not bought. iron. Our research discovered a vein of magnetite running Lucas, 21, spent a month in Iceland and collected three through parts of the Baja Peninsula. The black magnetite small, thoughtfully labeled bags of sand, carrying them in grains separate from the generic tan quartz presented a the bottom of his backpack. most unusual pattern due to difference in specific gravity Back home, we pored over maps of Iceland to find (density) between quartz (2.6) and magnetite (5.2). Rauðasandur’s famous red sand beach, which gets its color Did I mention science? Geography? Geology? History? from pulverized scallop shells; Dyrhólaey’s black sand beach Did I mention close inspection of the earth under our feet? (eroded lava); and the remote Thjorsardalur Valley River Cindy, 30, emailed, “Grandpa, I’m bringing you sand from (mixed glacial sand). my two favorite beaches in New Zealand.”

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Collecting sand is so odd that the grandkids had to find out what kind of eccentricity had possessed their grandpa. Once they began to see that sand had so many interesting aspects, they morphed from skeptics to believers to practitioners. After inspecting and researching each grandchild’s sand gift, I fill two 20 x 150 mm test tubes, cork the top and tape on a source label. I keep one test tube to proudly add to my collection. The second one I send to the gifter along with another tube of some interesting sand sample I have on hand. A simple tube display rack is included along with two empty test tubes which imply “Fill me.” This is a virtually no-cost, high-reward incidental activity. Old jars work just fine for a few samples. Anything will do. There are no rules. From collecting, we can move on to looking at sand under a microscope. I confess to having purchased a $250 stereooptic microscope which provides endless fascination to

me, my grandchildren, and friends of all ages. (How much does a new golf driver cost?) Sand under a microscope is extraordinarily interesting and frequently beautiful. Who knew? My digital microscope camera lets me photograph and share the interesting aspects and beauty of their sands. The International Sand Collectors Society (sandcollectors.com) offers annual Sand Calendars which I gift to my grandchildren. Sand collection has shown my grandchildren that sand is not just sand. It is often dramatically different from beach to beach. It memorializes special places and times. Sand brings us to look closely, to inspect the earth; to see that not all is what it appears to be; that there is richness underfoot. Sand is now our special connection, a special interest we share. Who would think? Sand! Griggs Irving split his working years between being an educator and an entrepreneur. He delights in associating with his five adult children and 11 grandkids and reveling in Seattle’s cultural bounty.

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GAMES FOR YOUR BRAIN ANSWERS

(Puzzles on page 64)

Aging with Confidence

Portmanteaus 1. Alpha and Beta (the first two letters of the Greek alphabet) 2. Motor and town (a nickname for Detroit) 3. Breakfast and lunch 4. Glamour and ritz 5. International and police 6. Partner and alimony

7. Beef and buffalo (a cross-breed of domestic cattle and the American bison) 7. Biography and picture (as in motion picture) 9. Spanish and English 10. Bombay and Hollywood 11. Motor and hotel 12. Chuckle and snort

Color Coded 1. Pink 2. Green 3. Blue 4. Red 5. Brown 6. Purple 7. Silver

8. Rose 9. Orange Cheque this out! 1. Boutique 2. Mosque 3. Opaque 4. Pique 5. Plaque

fall 2018

6. Discotheques 7. Risqué 8. Brusque 9. Statuesque 10. Grotesque

| 3rd Act magazine 59


ON THE TOWN

New Museum Helps Visitors Warm Up to Nordic Culture BY MISHA BERSON

W

hat Seattle cultural facility has a fjord, two bridges, colorful seabirds soaring high, a fireplace, and a café serving such delicacies as pepperkakor (ginger cookies) and toscakaka (almond caramel cake)? That would be the Nordic Museum, an impressive new facility near the famed Ballard Locks. Other museums in the Puget Sound Area—including the long-established Seattle Art Museum, Museum of History and Industry, and the Museum of Flight— may be better known to locals and tourists. But the Seattle region is home to numerous other attractive, informative institutions with special missions that also merit a visit. The Nordic Museum is a terrific place to start. Designed by the Seattle architecture firm Mithun, this spacious modernist

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structure features an elegant interplay of dark metal, gleaming glass, and warm wood accents showing fidelity to Swedish and Danish design aesthetics. The building opened with fanfare in May 2018 with the president of Iceland, the crown princess of Denmark, and other dignitaries attending the celebration. Though Ballard is increasingly culturally diverse as its population expands, the Seattle neighborhood (which was its own city until 1907) retains strong ties to—and is justly proud of—its Scandinavian heritage. In the late 19th century, many immigrants from Sweden, Norway, Denmark, and elsewhere in the Nordic realm settled in the area. They were especially active in Western Washington’s burgeoning maritime and logging industries. In the 1980s, some of their descendants

Photos courtesy of the Nordic Museum

founded the Nordic Heritage Museum, housed in a Ballard schoolhouse. Over several decades the museum amassed a large collection of books, artifacts, and other material related to ScandinavianAmerican life, and served the community with exhibits, performances, and educational events. But the new Nordic Museum (which dropped the “heritage” from its name) is expanding on that mission. And the www.3rdActMag.com


building itself, which cost about $50 1100), including intricately wrought million in donated funds, is a real dazzler. armor and weaponry, glass objects and A tall, gleaming structure measuring jewelry, with some pieces dating back some 57,000 square feet, it welcomes you 1,200 years. The exhibit comes here from into its airy environs via a sweeping, Sweden’s Uppsala University. two-story walkway dubbed Fjord Hall. The Nordic Museum also hosts a A dramatic 34-foot, floorrange of film screenings One goal to-ceiling bas-relief map and lectures as well as near the entrance depicts of the museum performing arts events the entire Scandinavian is to show how (Scandinavian music, folk region, from Denmark dancing, and even Nordic the values of and Norway to Finland, punk rock) in a wood-lined Nordic culture Sweden, and Iceland. performance space. (One “O u r old faci l it y popular holdover from resonate and focused on the the old facility: the Soup influence immigration experience and Cinema series, which this region’s from Scandinavia to serve up hearty soups and contemporary films from Scandinavian America,” says Nordic values. Mu seu m exec ut ive countries, with English director Eric Nelson. “We subtitles.) Other resources decided in the new museum to take a include a museum shop, a library, an slightly larger look at the topic. We really expanding oral history collection, and wanted to expand the idea of looking at the pleasant lobby café. Nordic history and culture in both the One goal of the museum is to show American and the European contexts.” how the values of Nordic culture resonate One of two clean-lined, spacious and influence this region’s contemporary upstairs galleries encapsulates Nordic values. “We’ve tried to really focus on history through film, artifacts, touch- themes that are universal—core values screen interactive tools, and narrative like innovation, connection to nature, displays, tracing this part of the world social justice,” Nelson explains. from its geologic origins through the It is the exploration of those values— Viking period and into the present. Cross in the Nordic world and our own area— either of two upstairs bridges that link to that make the Nordic Museum not only a another long gallery, and you’ll discover blast from the past, but a place of modern the fascinating story of Scandinavians in relevance as well. the Pacific Northwest through archival The Nordic Museum is open Tuesdays photographs and colorful, informative through Sundays. Admission is $15/adults exhibit material. and $12/seniors (65 and up), with free Downstairs there are more exhibits admission to all on first Thursdays of each along the “fjord.” And if you look up, you’ll month. Low-cost parking is available. The see the dazzling stained glass seabird museum is located at 2655 N.W. Market sculptures created for the museum by St., Seattle. Phone: 206-789-5707. Website: Nordic artist Tróndur Patursson from www.nordicmuseum.org the Faroe Islands. Nearby are galleries Misha Berson writes about the arts for The for temporary shows. Eagerly anticipated Seattle Times and many other publications, and is the author of four books, including this fall is “The Vikings Begin”—a Something’s Coming, Something Good: West major show of ancient artifacts from Side Story and the American Imagination (Applause/Hal Leonard). Scandinavia’s Viking Era (700 AD to Aging with Confidence

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BOOKS REVIEWED BY JO SHILLING

Horizon House

The RBG Workout BY BRYANT JOHNSON I might as well confess upfront—I love Ruth Bader Ginsburg. No matter where you stand on her decisions as a Supreme Court Justice of the United States, you have to admire her stamina, intelligence, and overall joie de vivre. And now we know the source: RBG, as she is fondly referred to in this little exercise book, has twice-weekly workouts with f itness trainer Bryant Johnson. (You may have seen them at work together in RBG, the recent documentary film, too.) In t he prolog ue, Gi nsbu rg descr ibes her health issues prior to beginning a training regimen. She survived two bouts of cancer a decade apart, each potentially deadly and devasting to her health. After Ginsburg completed chemo and radiation for the first cancer, her husband suggested she hire a personal trainer to regain her strength and well-being, because, in his words, she looked like an Auschwitz survivor. That not-so-little shove began her journey for the next decade until pancreatic cancer struck and she went through it all again. This tiny book takes the reader completely through RBG’s workout, with illustrations and alternatives for those of us who are not in such good condition. As Johnson says, “In this book, I present the workout exactly as I do it with Justice

Aging with Confidence

Ginsburg, along with some variations for your skill level, personal preferences, and the equipment you’ve got at hand. If you belong to a gym, do this workout there. If you don’t…,” her trainer lists everything you’ll need to do it at home. After several years of twice-weekly workouts, not only did the justice increase her stamina, but RBG’s bone density began to increase. This is remarkable news for an octogenarian and equally important for all of us post-menopausal women and many men. With the horrible side effects of most bone-loss drugs, it is heartening to think that we may be able to skip medication altogether and just head to the gym. The other thing I love about this little book are the sidebars scattered throughout. One of my favorites addresses her friendship with the late Justice Antonin Scalia, her polar opposite on most court decisions. Johnson writes: “During one workout, we caught a special on NewsHour on Justice Ginsburg and Antonin Scalia. No one could understand why they were the best of friends. She looked over at me and said, ’He makes me laugh.’ Isn’t it just as simple as that? To have opposing ideas and still be best of friends is what life is really about.” Hear, hear.

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fall 2018

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GAMES for your brain Exercise your brain and have some fun with these puzzles designed to stimulate different cognitive functions.

Portmanteaus (easier)

The word portmanteau, meaning suitcase, was given a new definition by Lewis Carroll (of Alice in Wonderland fame) to mean words that are made up of elements of two or more other words. Carroll was a prodigious coiner of portmanteaus, including slithy (from slimy and lithe) and mimsy (from miserable and flimsy). Can you guess the two (or more) word origins of the following portmanteaus? 1. Alphabet___________________________________________ 2. Motown____________________________________________ 3. Brunch_____________________________________________ 4. Glitz_______________________________________________ 5. Interpol____________________________________________ 6. Palimony___________________________________________

7. Beefalo____________________________________________ 8. Biopic______________________________________________ 9. Spanglish__________________________________________ 10. Bollywood__________________________________________ 11. Motel______________________________________________ 12. Chortle____________________________________________

Color Coded (harder)

Many things are associated with colors—the Red Sox or the White House, for example. In this quiz we give the associations, and you must provide the colors. 1. Breast cancer awareness and a famous panther?____________________________________________________________________ 2. A healthy tea and the end of a golf fairway?_________________________________________________________________________ 3. The Democratic Party and IBM?___________________________________________________________________________________ 4. Mars and China?__________________________________________________________________________________________________ 5. A delivery company and a university in Providence, Rhode Island?____________________________________________________ 6. Royalty and “The People Eater”?___________________________________________________________________________________ 7. The interior of a cloud and the tongue of a convincing orator?________________________________________________________ 8. An annual California parade and an optimist’s glasses?______________________________________________________________ 9. The protestants of Northern Ireland and autumn?__________________________________________________________________

Cheque this out! (hardest)

All of the answers in this word definition game end with the letters QUE.

1. A small, usually upscale shop that caters to a select clientele.___________________________________________________ 2. An Islamic house of worship.__________________________________________________________________________________ 3. Non-transparent, unable to be seen through.__________________________________________________________________ 4. A feeling of irritation or resentment.__________________________________________________________________________ 5. A sticky deposit on your teeth or in your arteries._______________________________________________________________ 6. This type of dance club became very popular in the 1970s.______________________________________________________ 7. Slightly shocking or sexually suggestive._______________________________________________________________________ 8. Abrupt or offhand in manner and/or speech.___________________________________________________________________ 9. This describes a woman who is quite tall and dignified.__________________________________________________________ 10. Ugly, gross, monstrous.______________________________________________________________________________________ Reprinted with permission from Nancy Linde, author of the best-selling book 399 Puzzles, Games, and Trivia Challenges Specially Designed to Keep Your Brain Young and her newest book, 417 More Games, Puzzles, and Trivia Challenges Specially Designed to Keep Your Brain Young. She is also the creator of the website Never2Old4Games.com, which is used by many senior-serving organizations in the U.S. and Canada.

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ANSWERS ON PAGE 59

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Profile for 3rd Act Magazine

3rd Act Magazine - Fall 2018  

3rd Act Magazine is a bold, fresh voice for older adults. Grandchildren are one of life’s greatest gifts. In this issue, we will explore ho...

3rd Act Magazine - Fall 2018  

3rd Act Magazine is a bold, fresh voice for older adults. Grandchildren are one of life’s greatest gifts. In this issue, we will explore ho...