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A Quarterly Supplement to

JULY 2014






Mapping Out the Generations

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A Quarterly Supplement to

5 Worth Noting

Ohio’s Steady U Program brings falls prevention awareness to the region.


July 2014

6 Simplify Life and Downsize By Sharon Schnall Sometimes it’s a team effort, but aging loved ones have choices on home options.

8 Grandparents Stay Active

By Donna Robinson Benefits to keep moving and ideas on how to participate in local activities.

10 Let the Power of Music Play By Mary Malik Caregivers can support their loved ones by providing a music playlist.

14 Calendar

July, August and September area events.


Mapping Out The Past By Angela Gartner Margaret Cheney, president of Ohio Genealogical Society, provides ways to discover your family’s history.

On the Cover: seated: Marylynn Seger and her father, Frank Mikolay, both of Sagamore Hills; standing, left to right are Frank’s great-grandchildren and grandchild: Deviana Lal, 13, Nicholas Pozsgay, 2, and Carrie Pozsgay of Akron. At left, Frank and Nicholas. Photo was taken at Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens, 714 N. Portage Path, Akron, Photo by LoveBug Photography.

10 12 Respite for the Caregiver By Karen Distelhorst Find ways to take a break from care through these helpful services.


July 2014 Aging Answers


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Publisher’s Perspective By Brad Mitchell Supplement to Northeast Ohio Parent

Welcome To the Second Issue of Aging Answers! As summer arrives, my thoughts turn back to playing golf on Saturday mornings with my brother, dad and grandfather. Papa, a tough Chicago Southsider, would never take a ride in the golf cart, but insisted on walking 18 holes several times a week until he was in his late 70s. This five-hour, four-mile journey was routinely filled with more than 100 golf swings, including a few dozen mulligans and, of course, various choice words in which my brother and I would smile at and shake our heads. The true fruit of Papa’s day was the two dozen balls he would find as the result of lazy golfers who didn’t bother to go off the beaten path in search of a stray shot. We came to understand that the true reason for him to be “on foot” was linked to his passion for the lost ball. This quarterly supplement within Northeast Ohio Parent serves as a resource to inspire and educate not only about care issues, but also how to keep our loved ones active and enjoying life. We focus on how staying healthy and informed can be keys to living an enriched life with limited health issues. As children, or even grandchildren, we can be the essential link to helping our aging loved ones get and stay on the right track, while still being respective to their feelings — whether to help them keep moving or ensuring they understand ways to prevent falls in their home. And, sometimes staying informed means making a change. We provide tips to those who wish to simplify life and downsize their current home. We also bring you a story about music therapy and how creating a playlist helps bring back fond memories. I respect my grandfather for the healthy, active lifestyle he chose to live out in his golden years. However, I neglected to mention that he normally started the golf day with White Castle burgers and coffee. We all need the “proper” fuel for the day.

Aging Answers is a property of Blue Bug Media, a division of Babcox Media, Inc. 3550 Embassy Parkway, Fairlawn, OH 44333 • 330-670-1234 24500 Chagrin Blvd., Suite 300, Cleveland, OH 44122 • 440-842-8600 Publisher Brad Mitchell Editorial Angela Gartner, Editor Jennifer Clements, Managing Editor Emma Kanagaki, Associate/Digital Editor Contributors: Mary Ellen Bramwell, Karen Distlehorst, Jesse Weinberger

Art & Production Tammy House, Art Director |

Advertising Services Amanda Wingerter, Ad Services | Advertising Sales Chris Geer, 330-670-1234 ext. 246 Janyse Heidy, 330-670-1234 ext. 250 Tarah King, 330-670-1234 ext. 245 Andie Martin, 330-670-1234 ext. 207 Subscription Services Hallie Brown, Subscription and Distribution Coordinator | Audience Development Brandi Gangel, Audience Development Manager | eMedia Jeff Philip, eMedia Development Manager | Cecilia Locke, eMedia Developer | Emily Bobb, Digital Ad Specialist | Corporate Bill Babcox, President Greg Cira, Vice President/Chief Financial Officer Jeff Stankard, Vice President/Group Publisher Beth Scheetz, Controller


Aging Answers July 2014

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Worth Noting

A Single Fall Can Change Someone’s Life Ohio’s Steady U program helps bring awareness to caregivers and aging adults. Did you know an older Ohioan falls every two minutes and sustains a fall-related injury every five minutes, resulting in two hospitalizations each hour, an emergency room visit every eight minutes and three deaths each day? Most falls in older adults can be prevented, and so the Ohio Department of Aging is focusing on a statewide collaborative falls prevention initiative called Steady U Ohio. This program helps the community become aware of how to prevent falls, which affect 30 percent of adults 65 and older. The following are some tips for caregivers to help ensure loved ones are safe, while respecting their independence. Talk about fall prevention. Assure your loved one that falling is not a normal part of aging. Bring the topic up, being persistent but

respectful. If he or she doesn’t want to talk about it, that’s OK, but bring the topic up again soon. Help loved ones remain active. Find out about local exercise programs for older adults by contacting your local senior center, community action agency or agency on aging. Be aware of medications and chronic illnesses. Individuals with severe chronic pain are up to 77 percent more likely to fall than those without pain. Pain can cause your loved one to resist activity and exercise. Likewise, some medications can make some people less stable on their feet. Use of assistive devices. There are many simple and inexpensive changes that can significantly reduce the risk of slipping, tripping and falling. Make loved ones aware of these, such as grab bars installed in restrooms, step stools instead of furniture to stand on,

s arenes tion Aw n e v e r pt. 23 Falls P rved Se e s b o e lb d Day wil mote an t r, to pro a e ss abou e th is y n aware c li b u p e ce falls increas nd redu event a r p to how dults. g older a n Agin among ouncil o C l a n io Nat — The

railings on both sides of staircases and automatic turn-on and -off night lights for safe passage. Promote good nutrition and hydration. A balanced diet with a variety of vegetables and calciumrich foods promotes overall general health and minimizes the symptoms of some chronic illnesses. Staying properly hydrated prevents low blood pressure, dizziness, fatigue and confusion. Visit to find a workshop near you or take the online falls risk assessment. Information provided by the Ohio Department of Aging,

July 2014 Aging Answers


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Simplify Life Options to Make a Move

Susan Sulcs’s parents spent five years researching relocation options to move from their Geauga County home that they lived in for 22 years. When the time was right and a freestanding house became available in an independent living community in Cuyahoga County, they sold their home and relocated. “They knew that if you don’t make the choice while you still can, someone will make the choice for you,” Sulcs says. “They were of the opinion that it’s much better when you make the choice.” In August 2013, her mother and father, then ages 83 and 84, moved from a three-bedroom ranch with a basement to a two-bedroom ranch house with no basement. Sulcs estimates her parents gave up about 60 percent of usable space with this transition. In return, they gained a maintenance-free living arrangement. Now they enjoy new friendships, organized trips to area cultural events and the freedom to come and go when they travel to Florida. Independent living in a smaller home, such as in the case of Sulcs’s parents, within a retirement community, represents one downsizing option available to the senior population. Other choices include moving in with an adult child or other relative, renting an apartment, buying a condominium or pursuing an assisted-living arrangement.


Aging Answers July 2014

Asking Questions

While there isn’t a specific recommended age for relocation, there are questions to consider, says Lee-Ann Spacek, owner and founder of North Coast Residential Relocation, LLC, of Solon, and serving clientele throughout Northeast Ohio. She also speaks at area forums on “Discovering Why, When and How to Make a Move.” “We all have to look at our environments and ask, ‘Is my house safe?’ Is it convenient? Does it meet my lifestyle needs?’” Spacek says. “Relocation depends on what that person still wants to do and

By Sharon Schnall

what’s their anticipated longevity and their ability to maintain a place.” Consider the scenario of an older married couple living in 3,800square-foot home with children who moved away 20 years ago. That couple can begin the relocation process by asking, “Can we do the laundry? Can we manage the stairs? Can we conveniently leave the house and drive to stores to do errands?” “If the house is not supporting your lifestyle, why are you paying taxes, utilities, insurance and the costs associated with a large home?” Spacek says. “The whole idea is to consolidate your efforts, consolidate your finances and consolidate your bills, in addition to reducing your space.” A Team Effort

Sulcs’s parents worked with a team of experts to help with selling their home and downsizing to a retirement community. They began by using the services of a relocation consultant who created a timeline to implement their goals and recommended realtors. After careful screening, her parents hired a realtor, which provided listing advice and suggested repairs to ready their house for sale. The relocation consultant also referred the parents to a contractor — a


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and Downsize “jack-of-all trades, almost a general contractor for little jobs,” Sulcs says. The contractor made a list of repairs, renovations and spruce-up tasks. The family reviewed this list with their realtor and set priorities. They decided which tasks the contractor and family members would complete, along with the ones that were not essential. The experts worked together, helping make the four-month turnaround of moving and selling a reality, Sulcs says. And, when appropriate, respectfully encouraged the process along. Accessibility Outside and Inside

Other options available to downsizing homeowners include moving into a smaller home or moving into a parent suite at an adult child’s home. Sally Levine, founder and principal of Levine Architecture & Design, Ltd., of Shaker Heights, has provided architectural services, primarily to Northeast Ohio clients, related to making accessible that

future smaller home or readying an adult child’s home for a parent to take up residence. Often, when downsizing to another house, many elderly clients choose a ranch house, says Levine, whose work emphasizes humancentered design. A universal concern the prospective owner usually has is “about the ability to get in and out of the house.” That may involve making a door entrance wider. Other exterior concerns include having as few steps as possible or even none to the entrances, the latter made possible with a gradual grading of the paths to those entrances. In Northeast Ohio, slippery paths during the snowy season are a concern. The use of radiant electric coils embedded in selected stoops and pathways helps to melt away snow and ice. And inside the house? “Bathrooms are number one,” Levine says. “People want to make sure they can bathe; they want to

make sure they can reach the faucet.” Changes can include curbless showers, comfort height toilets and bathroom counters designed with knee space to allow for sitting. Before moving into an adult child’s home, existing plumbing lines are evaluated to determine if they are located in such a way to easily add a bathroom. The second concern is the kitchen. The area needs to be maneuverable, the cabinets reachable and “under-cabinet task lights (can) be installed to illuminate the counter work surfaces,” she says. Going into these new arrangements, clients often think that accessibility-promoting changes will be institutional in appearance and detract from property values. Not so. The property does not have to look like it has been adapted. “It’s not an add-on,” Levine says. “It doesn’t devalue the property. In the end, I’d like to think it adds to the value of our home. It’s a home like any other home. It’s just designed in a way that gives independence.” Sharon Schnall is a writer in Northeast Ohio. She has worked as a geriatric social worker and a geriatric researcher.

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Keeping Grandma and Grandpa


By Donna Robinson

“Grandma, let’s go for a walk, okay?” This is such a simple request from a grandchild, and no doubt heard by many grandparents. Staying active is one of the best ways to keep up with those “little feet.” Staying Sharp

Beth Horvath, health and wellness director for the Lake County YMCA, Central Branch, said the benefits of a grandparent staying active have three components: — Socialization. Some older people live on their own and don’t have a lot of interaction with others. This keeps them happy and gives them a feeling of belonging. — Health. Exercise acts like medication in a lot of cases. It can lower blood pressure and

cholesterol levels and reduce risks for diabetes and heart disease. Strength exercises help build bone mass, which wards off osteoporosis. It also burns calories, so it can help keep weight in check. — Accomplishments and challenges. When we see that we’re getting stronger, we feel proud of ourselves, and it gives us a sense of overall well-being. “There are plenty of benefits for

grandparents staying active,” says Kerri Davidson, director of the Willowick Senior Center. “Their mental state of mind stays sharper and they have a more positive outlook on life by staying active in social settings. Having to remember appointments, classes or social engagements is also good for your memory. If they are participating in more active activities, such as line dancing or even Wii bowling, they are strengthening their muscles and increasing the time they can stay independent in their homes.” Ways To Keep Moving

Activities at senior centers in general have a vast appeal in the mindset of many aging adults. “I know there have been a handful of seniors who have told me how thankful they are to have the senior center to go to since their spouse has passed away,” says Davidson. “They say otherwise they would just be staring at the walls at home. Just going to a senior center and enjoying a cup of coffee and maybe engaging in a conversation with someone can mean the world.”


Aging Answers July 2014

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Not only do the senior community centers have ways to stay socially active, they (as well as local YMCAs) also have a variety of fitness activities for seniors to enjoy. They can also participate in a dance or art class at their city’s recreation center. “There are different types of exercise that are important for different things,” Horvath says. “For example, a water arthritis class for seniors will target range of motion in joints. They will work every joint in their bodies during that class. The water is warm, supportive and provides resistance for the gentle exercise they do.” “We make all kinds of modifications for people when it comes to exercise, because we’re all different,” Horvath notes. “Some people have issues from aging, but even young people can have issues. One thing we have learned at the Y is, older people don’t want to be ‘babied.’ Our seniors want to work hard. We are mindful that there may be some limitations, but there are always ways to work around them.” JoAnn Mason, director of the Donna Smallwood Activities Center and Office on Aging in Parma adds, “Our seniors love line dancing; we have a yoga stretch program and a chair exercise program and these are all twice a week. They also have their usual games to keep sharp like Bingo and cards; pinochle and bridge.” Most senior centers and seniorminded communities offer oneday bus trips for the on-the-go senior, like a trip to the casino, “Lolly the Trolley,” Island Cruising and viewing covered bridges in Northeast Ohio. Seniors can also schedule out-of-state fun overnight trips/tours to Toronto, Sugar Creek, Amish Country and even Boston.

“I feel we are quite mindful of those who have limitations,” Davidson says. “For example, we don’t discourage someone who uses a walker to not participate in one of our trips. There is always someone around who is willing and able to assist someone if they may need it. We also accept donations of walkers, wheelchairs, canes, etc. and we loan them out to anyone who may need it, free of charge.” Spending Family Time

There are many fun activities Grandma and Grandpa can partake in with their grandchildren. One is the cornhole toss, a game that has taken off in popularity. Grandparents can also take the grandchildren on a historical tour, teach them how to make crafts, take them to free concerts in the park or church festivals and help them pick out books at the library. Davidson says usually once or twice a year, during summer vacation or Christmas break, the senior center plans a grandparent/child activity. “This July, we will be showing the Disney movie ‘Frozen’ and having an ice cream social where they are encouraged to bring their grandchildren. In the past, we have had a hot dog luncheon and had a Willowick police officer bring his police dog to perform some demonstrations.” Horvath says, “Keeping fit and healthy is important to seniors so they can be active with their grandchildren. When we teach classes, we cue participants by talking about performing everyday activities, for example, lifting toddlers by using your legs, or taking your grocery bags out of your trunk. What we have heard from our seniors is that they notice they can play with their grandkids better now that they are exercising regularly. We encourage active family time in our adventure center and also at our Outdoor Family

Center in Perry. It’s a perfect place to swim, skate, climb and play for all generations.” “Grandparents should stay active to keep up with their grandkids if they are able to,” Davidson says. “This will aid in them having a closer relationship for a longer period of time. Being active in general does help your mental, emotional and physical well-being.” Whether Grandma or Grandpa is at the home of their grandchildren, or somewhere else, witnessing one’s grandchildren grow year by year, is what being a grandparent is all about — it gives them purpose, and drives them to care, but mostly to love, and there is nothing better than that.

July 2014 Aging Answers


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Let the Power of

The sound of music helps caregivers support aging loved ones in some surprising and even stimulating ways.


Aging Answers July 2014


You don’t have to be a musician or even a music lover to experience what it feels like when you hear a tune that immediately takes you back to a moment in time — in fact, this is the reaction eldercare experts count on when introducing music into the daily lives of the aging population. Music helps evoke a memory, but also restores certain skills that have been lost. Music also works to ease anxiety and other common issues that often come with aging and dementia.

Introducing Tunes to Loved Ones

“The key is finding the right music for the listener,” says Jean Wendland, director of rehabilitation at Century Oak Care Center in Cleveland. Experts advise home caregivers to introduce music every day for 20 minutes. Some people will have an immediate and positive reaction, while with others it may take some time. “We have seen how creating a personal playlist for a resident has made all the difference and reduced or even removed some medications and calmed anxiety and fear,” Wendland says and

adds once that person puts on the headphones, most people quickly have that positive reaction. “We ask for help from families to find the right music for the resident,” Wendland says. “(We ask) When did they grow up? Who were their favorite singers? And so on. One woman at Century Oak was refusing to eat, and once we played some Glenn Miller Orchestra music for her, she responded by sitting up and eating.”

Managing Stress With Music

Many caregivers have trouble easing anxiety and managing aggressive behaviors. Coro Health MusicFirst is a program that Maple Wood Care Center in Streetsboro uses to help with these issues. “The program wants to know what behaviors you need help with, such as relaxation, sleeping, more energy or ability to focus,” says Nicole Trucker, program coordinator at Maple Wood Care Center. “Then you move into your favorite music genre: country, classical, spiritual, and they set up a playlist for you. It’s that simple and you can even do it from your phone, so it’s portable for a home caregiver.”

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PlayOn She adds, “We use the music to support activities like playing games that need more concentration, in the hair salon for better cooperation and relaxation, at meal times to stimulate appetites and in the evening.” Supporting Activities

Mary Jo McGuire of Occupational Therapists in Private Practice in Akron has seen the power of music with aging clients firsthand. “We teach our therapists who go into the home to utilize whatever strategy is mean-

ingful to the individual,” McGuire says. “One client was exhibiting very aggressive behaviors. We discovered that music had been a large part of his life. He was a musician, served in the military and even met his wife at Carnegie Hall.” The therapist for this gentleman got some headphones, downloaded music from his era and included patriotic songs and he became calm and able to function much better, McGuire says. Over and over again, similar outcomes are described when music is introduced into the daily rou-

By Mary Malik

tines of aging adults. Music has been found to activate certain neurological pathways in the brain that have long been neglected. Once familiar music is re-introduced, those pathways are engaged, memories return and many people are able to function better and enjoy life more. If a little music can improve the quality of life for an aging loved one, then let the music play on.

July 2014 Aging Answers


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Take Time Away from Care w If you’re part of the sandwich generation, taking care of both children and parents, you know what it’s like to feel stretched a little thin. By Karen Distelhorst, MSN, RN, GCNS-BC | Clinical Nurse Specialist

We have all felt like we could use a few more hours in the day. Many of us play the role of Mom/Dad, daughter/son, employee, homemaker, friend, family member and more. Every role you play has responsibilities that go along with it. However, maintaining a breakneck pace is not healthy. Taking time away from caregiving responsibilities is called respite, and it’s important for a caregiver’s mental and physical health. According to the National Alliance for Caregivers, over half of all caregivers do not take time for themselves. However, using respite care, in any form, can reduce stress and improve family relationships. While taking this time does involve some planning, by identifying individuals or agencies that can take over your responsibilities for a short period of time, it will allow you a muchneeded break without feeling guilty.


Aging Answers July 2014

Finding A Respite Service

There are many different levels of respite within the community. These services can range from companionship for a few hours, to adult day care, to overnight stays in a facility. There are many agencies available that will provide nonmedical assistance in the home for an hourly rate. Services may include companionship, running errands, grocery shopping, meal preparation, housekeeping or laundry. The key is to shop around and find an agency that will match your needs in terms of the amount of hours needed and types of services needed. And, of course, make sure the agency is licensed, bonded and insured. Cynthia Buchanan, owner of Second Family Assistance Services in Wickliffe, says her agency “helps bridge the gap in care.” She adds for her agency, “If only one or two hours are needed for care, we can provide that.” Sometimes, in more complex situations, when a caregiver needs to go out of town or needs a more substantial break, overnight respite may be an option. More assistedliving facilities are offering shortterm, overnight respite care as a service. “Overnight respite can be planned in advance or occur in an emergency situation,” says Kimberly Varner, admissions director of Jackson Ridge Rehabilitation

and Care Center in Canal Fulton. She notes overnight respite can “offer peace of mind, knowing that even in an emergency, your family member is in a CMS five-star-rated facility. Overnight respite can provide short-term help for caregivers who are struggling, perhaps with their own health issues.” Medicare or private insurance, in some situations, may cover overnight respite. When dealing with the care needs of older adults, here are a few respite options to consider: • Friends and family — Don’t be ashamed to ask for help. When friends or other family members offer their assistance, take them up on it. Sometimes we don’t want to burden other people, but set aside your pride, and if no one has offered, ask for help. You may be surprised how readily people are willing to lend a hand. • Churches and synagogues — Many churches have volunteers who will provide visitation and/or help for older adults who are in need. You can contact your local church or synagogue directly or go online to to explore the resources of the Interfaith Caregivers Program in the Akron area. This agency is a part of a nationwide interfaith volunteer caregiving program that brings together people of many faiths to help people with long-term health needs. • The local Area Agency on Aging (AAoA) has the resources to help you determine what level of respite you and your family member may need, and will help you coordinate the referrals. The AAoA, a nonprofit agency, is a resource for programs, services and information for older adults and their families. There are 12 Area Agencies in Ohio

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with Respite and you can find your local AAoA by going to Take Care of Yourself

You are bound to experience stress at some point. The key is to recognize it and manage it. Here are some tips to help you: • Pace yourself. Being a caregiver in the sandwich generation is a marathon, not a sprint. Constant levels of stress have detrimental effects to your physical and emotional health. You cannot take care of others if you become ill yourself. • Set limits and have realistic expectations for yourself. You cannot be all things to everyone. It is OK to say “no” sometimes. It’s important to understand what you can and can’t do. • Take time for yourself. Everyone needs to recharge now and then. Some people may think it seems “selfish,” but taking care of yourself will help you be a better caregiver to others. Remember, being a caregiver can be a lot of work, but there is always help available. By accepting help and using respite care, you can make these years more meaningful for you and your family.

July 2014 Aging Answers


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Event Listings ONGOING MONDAYS Heartwise Education/ Support Group, free, 7-8:30 p.m. This group is a place to share thoughts and concerns with others who have heart conditions. Programs include information about diet, exercise and medications as well as occasional cooking demonstrations. Southwest General Health Center (call for specific room), 18697 Bagley Road, Middleburg Heights, 440-816-5772

TUESDAYS ParkFit, free, 9-10 a.m., third Tuesday of each month. Sponsored by Westfield Southpark Mall and Southwest General. Come for blood pressure screenings 9-10 a.m. and a

fied diabetes educators teaches how food, activity and medication affect blood sugar levels. Pre-registration and physicians orders are required. Call to schedule. West Medical Center, Conference Room B, 36000 Euclid Ave., Willoughby, 440-953-6272, The Genealogist Is In, 1-4 p.m. Drop by the Medina Library to get help from one of the genealogy and local history specialists. 210 S. Broadway St., Medina, 330-725-0588, Group for Caregivers, 6:30-8 p.m. A weekly support group for those who are caring for a friend or loved one with cancer. The Gathering Place East, 23300 Commerce Park, Beachwood, advance registration required by calling

July, August & practice communication, leadership and speaking skills. Fairlawn Kiwanis Community Center, 3486 S. Smith Road, 330-961-1757, Caregiver Support Group and Resource Center, free, third Tuesday of each month, 7-9 p.m. This group comes together for information and support for anyone taking care of an elderly or disabled family member, loved one or friend. Topics vary and include community services for caregivers; coping with the dynamics of caregiving; planning; open discussion; problem-solving and learning caregiving techniques. Southwest General Health Center (call for specific room), 18697 Bagley Road, Middleburg Heights, 440-816-5772

emotional health, benefits of good nutrition, respite caregiving options, etc. Everyone is welcome. Westbay Rehab and Care Center, 27601 Westchester Parkway, Westlake, 440930-0431

WEEKLY Meal Program, 4 p.m. Monday-Friday. The cost is $7 for ages 60 and younger. A voluntary donation of $4 is asked for ages 60 and older. Reservations must be made no later than 11 a.m. the day of the meal. Boyd Esler Senior/Community Center, 2491 Canfield Road, Akron, 330-733-2556, Midway Mall Walkers, 9 a.m. Sponsored by the EMH Healthcare, come in daily and walk for your health. Also, join on


Walk with a Doc – Cleveland Clinic’s Walk with a Doc is free to participate. Walkers meet at a designated location rain or shine (cancelled for storms) for a casual 1.5- to 3-mile walk with a brief informative talk by Cleveland Clinic specialists. Join this walk at your own pace at these following locations: ~ Beachwood chapter meets at Cleveland Metroparks Acacia Reservation during the warmer months. Meet in front of the main building at 8:30 a.m. ~ Lake County chapter meets at the entrance to the Penitentiary Glen, Wildlife Center at 8:30 a.m. 8668 Kirtland Chardon Road, Willoughby ~ Medina/Wooster chapter meets at the corner of Oak Hill Park, 3000 Oak Hill Dr., Wooster at 8:30 a.m. (first and third Saturdays). Meets at Kinney Building Walking Trail, Burbank Road, Wooster at 8:30 a.m. (second and fourth Saturdays). ~ Strongsville chapter meets at the Bonnie Park Picnic Area at 8:30 a.m. ~ Twinsburg chapter meets at the entrance to Dodge Intermediate School at 8:30 a.m. Visit to learn more about programs and locations near you.

free program at 10 a.m. Westfield Southpark Mall, upper food court, 500 SouthPark Center, Strongsville, 440-8164037 Basic Diabetes Class, Tuesdays, Sept. 9-30. 10 a.m.noon, designed for people with diabetes who want a healthy level of control. A team of certi-


Aging Answers July 2014



Fairlawn Toastmasters, free, 7-8:30 p.m. Join every first, third and fifth Tuesday. Toastmasters helps you build confidence and communicate better. Provides a supportive environment in which to

Caregiver Support Group, free. This gathering provides a time for caregivers of parents/grandparents/children to connect and talk about their experiences and chat. Caregiver topics include stress management, spiritual and

the third Tuesday of every month for an educational presentation on a variety of topics. The event is held in the food court. Midway Mall, 3343 Midway Mall, Elyria, 440-324-5749,

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September Anytime Volunteer Opportunities ~ Volunteers are an integral part of the Medina County Park District. Carpentry projects, puppeteers, photography, blue bird box monitors, butterfly surveys, program assistant and event host/greeter are just a few of the ways you can get involved. Visit medinacounty or call the volunteer coordinator at 330-239-4814.

July 1 Arthritis Foundation Exercise Program is joint-safe way to exercise, free, 10:30 a.m. Developed specifically for people with arthritis, this program is safe for all ages and is taught by Arthritis Foundation trained and certified leaders. The class can be done seated or standing. Registration is required. Elms Retirement Village, 136 S. Main St., Wellington, 440-647-2414,

July 3 Diabetes Educational Series, free, 2:30-4 p.m. Introduction to diabetes and the disease process. Join for a series of four 90-minute educational sessions designed to help you effectively manage your diabetes. A nurse, dietitian or pharmacist will lead the discussions. UH Bedford Medical Center, Conference Room 1, 44 Blaine Ave., 440735-4700,

July 10 Your Parks, Your Stories, Cleveland Metroparks Memories Project, 6-8 p.m. Cleveland Metroparks will be celebrating its Centennial in 2017. In 2014 and 2015, the park system will be sending out an Oral History team to collect personal and family stories of how Cleveland Metroparks has impacted lives

Send your event listings to:

through the decades or in recent days. The team will audiorecord community members’ memories and then preserve them in archives for posterity and as a source of stories for the celebration. They are seeking photos that document your activities in the park, as well as old maps, posters or memorabilia of Cleveland Metroparks past. Call Historical Interpreter Foster Brown at 440-786-8530 or by email: 24000 Valley Parkway, North Olmsted Fraud Against Seniors: Common Cons and Signs of Elder Abuse, 2-4 p.m. An elder law professional will share information on how to keep yourself protected against fraud. Registration is requested. Parma-Snow Library Branch, 2121 Snow Road, 216-6614240,

July 11-13 The 67th Annual Italian American Festival, 11 a.m. Presented by the Summit County Italian-American Societies, the festival has a homemade wine contest, bocce tournament, entertainment and drawing for a trip to Italy for two. Lock 3, 200 S. Main St., Akron,

July 12-13 Music in the Valley, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Hale Farm & Village continues its partnership with Folknet to present the 39th Annual Music in the Valley Folk Music & Wine Festival. Enjoy homegrown music by local musicians and Ohio-made wine and food. Bring a chair, bring your family and make a day of listening to music throughout the grounds at Hale Farm & Village. 2686 Oak Hill Road, Bath, 330-666-3711

July 17 Stroke Prevention, free, 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Health talk with Sheila Rubin, MD, presented by Cleveland Clinic’s Healthwise Connection. Join Dr. Rubin as she explores the causes, treatment and prevention of strokes. Reservations required. Mentor Senior Center, 8484 Munson Road, Mentor, 440-974-5725,

July 19 Living History Days, 11 a.m.4:30 p.m. Friends, business associates and staff members of the Seiberling family are eager to tell you about life in the 1920s on an American country estate. Played by Stan Hywet’s History First Hand Troupe, this interactive tour takes place on select Saturdays throughout the season and is appropriate for guests of all ages. All tours on Living History Days are included in a self-guided tour admission. Tour also takes place on Sept. 13. Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens, 714 N. Portage Path, Akron, 330-836-5533,

July 19 Grandparenting for the New Millenium, 9-11:30 a.m. Join a lively discussion for grandparents-to-be and new grandparents about the changes in birthing and infant care practices. Class topics include: importance of grandparenting, changes in childbirth practices, updates on baby care recommendations, communication with new parents, long-distance grandparenting, most current info on sleep safety and SIDS prevention, and infant nutrition recommendations. One-time class, $15 per grandparent. Wellness Center of Fairview Hospital, 2nd floor, 3035 Wooster Road, Rocky River, 440-3560346,

July 30 Through August 3 Bridgestone Invitational World Golf Championships at Firestone Country Club. Come to this televised event to see some of the biggest golf professionals play it out on the course. 452 E. Warner Road, Akron, 904-542-5222,

July 31 Dinner and a Movie, 3-5 p.m. Members of the Age Well Be Well club, which allows seniors to participate in regularly scheduled activities and events, will enjoy the movie “Father of the Bride” along with dinner and popcorn with other Age Well Be Well members. The program is held at UH Bedford Medical Center, 44 Blaine Ave., Learn more about how to be a member of the club at 440-735-4200,

August 1-2 Vintage Ohio, 1-10 p.m. More than 20 wineries offer samples at this festival of wine. Event also features arts and crafts, demonstrations, music, food, children’s entertainment/play area and a carryout store. Lake Metropark Farmpark, 8800 Euclid Chardon Road, Kirtland, 800-227-6972,

August 9 Super Star Party, 8 p.m.-midnight. Have fun with astronomy while looking up into the sky. Catch a good view of the Perseid Meteor Shower. Also, see the moon, planets, stars and solar system with telescopes and expert guidance provided by the Chagrin Valley Astronomical Society. Penitentiary Glen Reservation, 8668 Kirtland-Chardon Road, Kirtland, 440-358-7275 or 800-669-9226, July 2014 Aging Answers


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Event Listings August 18 American Red Cross Blood Drive, 12:30-6:30 p.m. Bloodmobile located at the Main Library, serving all Lake County hospitals. Donors may call 1-800-give-life for an appointment, but not necessary. Mentor Public Library, James R. Garfield Room (Main - Lower Level), 8215 Mentor Ave., Mentor, 440-255-8811,

September 1 Dementia Series: Normal Behaviors, 1-2:30 p.m. Lynn Hermensky, a registered nurse from Kemper House presents this series on dementia. Learn to assist caregivers in identifying and dealing with “normal” behaviors associated with dementia. Identify what triggers these behaviors and what these behaviors are trying to communicate. Mentor Public Library, James R. Garfield Room (Main Lower Level), 8215 Mentor Ave., Mentor, 440-255-8811,

sixth-leading cause of death, we all have a reason to fight this mind-robbing and fatal disease. Area Chapters’ Walks: Sept. 14, Holden Arboretum, Kirtland; Sept. 21, Cleveland Zoo; Sept. 28, All Pro Freight Stadium, Avon. Register at or call 216-634-5566.

September 14 Cedar Valley Settlers Celebration and Music Festival, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Today’s Ohio is shaped from the past. Learn from days gone-by. There will be hands-on activities like candle dipping, pioneer toys, hoop rolling and other pioneer activities. Live music at Frostville stage with Mike Gorrell and Border Ride. Dale Ann Bradley will be headlining at 3 p.m. Frostville Museum is located off Cedar Point Road in Rocky River Reservation in North Olmsted. Free parking is available at Rocky River Nature Center and Lagoon Picnic area with

July, August & September regular shuttles.

September 16 IDEAS Support Group, 2:30-4 p.m. IDEAS support group invites any adult with diabetes. The group provides a place to share experience, concerns, IDEAS and feelings. This is a group for both new and longtimers. Many persons using an insulin pump attend. You are welcome to bring supportive family or friends. Medical Center, Conference Room B, 36000 Euclid Ave., Willoughby. For more information, call The Diabetes Care Center, 440-953-6272, Health Heart Lecture, 6-7 p.m. Lectures will update on hypertension medications. Summa Barberton Hospital, 155 Fifth St. NE, Barberton, 800-23SUMMA (1-800-237-8662), classenrollment.

Walk to End Alzheimer’s, 8:30 a.m. Nearly everyone has been touched by Alzheimer’s. Whether you are walking for friends or family or to fight the nation’s


Aging Answers July 2014

Frank Krupa and Center Stage Mentor present Pre-Medicated Mystery Dinner Theatre, 7-9 p.m. What a fun way to spend a Friday night. Live entertainment with a local flare. Advanced registration is required. Mentor Senior Center, 8484 Munson Road, 440-974-5725,

September 29 Welcome to Medicare, 2-3 p.m. Come to the Ohio Senior Health Information Program and learn about Medicare benefits, supplemental insurance policies, Medicare Advantage plans and prescription drug coverage. OSHIIP is a free service through the Ohio Department of Insurance. Middleburg Heights Branch Library, 15600 E. Bagley Road, 440-234-3600,

October 1 Senior Network Wellness Expo, 9-11:30 a.m. Come to this free health fair and vendor expo at the Solon Senior Community Center, 35000 Portz Parkway, Solon, 440-349-6363,

September 9 Diabetes Care, 6:30-7:30 p.m. The outpatient diabetes education and self management program at Summa Barberton and Wadsworth-Rittman Hospitals focus on seven self-care behaviors that are essential for improved health status and greater quality of life. Attend the Diabetes Support Group for additional support and continued health. Summa Barberton Hospital, 155 Fifth St. NE, Barberton, 800-23SUMMA (1-800-237-8662), classenrollment.summa

September 19

September 10 Lake Metroparks Senior Day, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. free for ages 55 and older. Lake Health will offer free health screenings including blood pressure, body mass index, osteoporosis and cholesterol testing. Screenings available by registration only. To register, call Lake Health at 440-953-6000 or 800-454-9800. Event also features Lake County Probate Court presentations and a vendor showcase featuring products and services important to today’s seniors. Out-of-county residents, Farmpark admission applies. Lake Metropark Farmpark, 8800 Euclid Chardon Road, Kirtland, 800-227-6972,

Send your event listings to:

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Help Aging Loved Ones with Pets By Dr. Anna M. van Heeckeren, MS, DVM

If you’re anything like me (I have two children, an aging parent, pets, and my husband and I work), then I can understand some of the struggles you face. On top of that, my dad lives alone in a big house and has pets that he and my Mom had acquired before my Mom’s untimely death in 2012. While the details are likely different in your family situation, I’m sure you worry about how to care for your aging parent and their pets. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, approximately 60 precent of households in the U.S. own at least one pet (usually a dog or cat). People can form tight bonds with their pets, which is called the Human-Animal Bond. So whether your parent owns a dog, cat, fish, birds, or another kind of pet, it’s possible that they have a very strong bond with their pet. If so, it’s important that you fully appreciate that. For those older adults who live with pets, animals can be of great benefit to their health in many ways. A pet can lower blood pressure; keep them engaged in the community; give them a reason to get out of bed; keep them mobile; allow them access to touch; keep the connection to a lost loved one; give them unconditional love; and provide assistance. If your aging loved one wants to continue living with a pet or is having trouble taking care the animal, there are options to meet everyone’s needs, (including the beloved pet) without stressing family members in the process. When there are plans to move to

a residential facility, there are questions that should be asked beforehand, such as: Do you allow pets? What kinds of pets are allowed? How many pets are allowed? Is there a size restriction on having a pet? Is there a non-refundable deposit for having a pet? How much is it? Is there a monthly fee for having a pet? How much is it? Do you provide assistance with pet care, or is that arranged by the pet owner? All residential facilities should have policies in place for annual veterinary care of pets that live with residents or even visit the facility, since a pet’s health can impact a person’s health. At a minimum, pets need to receive a physical examination, be current on essential vaccinations, and be free from parasites. Of course, there are options other than pet ownership. Some people are trained to come into a home, residential facility, or even hospital with a trained therapy pet. My dad has chosen to live at home and keep his pets. He has lots of support to help him around the house for him and his pets. I hope your aging parents do, too. Dr. Anna at One Health Organization, if you or your loved one needs more guidance than is given here, please see our accompanying ad for details. July 2014 Aging Answers 17

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Mapping Out The Past Explore your family tree with a genealogical adventure. By Angela Gartner

you know and work backwards, to When Margaret Cheney of Elyria get a clearer of idea began her genealogical on where you start journey, she said it took her looking.” to amazing places. This can be accom“I learned that my father’s plished by simply ancestors, from both his talking to your loved father and mother, had setones. tled in Jefferson County, “We all like to hear Ohio, as early as 1795,” she stories, and stories of says.“One side came our own families are from New Jersey always important,” with 12 children, and Cheney says. “In the other side came today’s society, we from the Philadelphia also have the area with 12 children. Top, Margaret Cheney’s means to record The children of these grandparents Vernon and Flossie Wallington; our stories in many two families soon Below, George and Kezia Halliwill with their family. Cheney’s great-grandmother, Kezia B. different formats.” started marrying each Halliwill, is seated on the right-hand side of Armed with the other. My grandparents the photo. stories or photos from the past, you always said they were fifth or sixth can start to fill in the blanks. There cousins, but it turned out they were third cousins. It became an interest- might be a question you found that needs an answer or there’s a family ing puzzle to put together.” member you want to get to know, or Cheney, who is now the president you could be interested in the overof the Ohio Genealogical Society, is all family history. not alone mapping out her family’s “To understand the past, is to unhistory. More people around the region and the U.S. are exploring their derstand the future, “ Cheney says. “If we know where we came from, it heritage — for a variety of reasons. helps us know where we are going.” “Yes, I do think there’s more of an There are different ways to begin interest in the past,” Cheney says, looking into the past, such as at adding television shows such as your local libraries. “Who Do You Think You Are?” on “Libraries may hold written family The Learning Channel and PBS’s histories or other information that “Genealogy Roadshow” may have relates to your family,” Cheney says. an influence. “Some of the smaller historical muWhile it can seem like a daunting seums hold a wealth of information task to dig into records during a and artifacts.” time where technology wasn’t as She notes old newspapers also abundant as today — it can be done. may hold keys to family history as “A journey to the past always the community columns provide instarts with yourself,” Cheney says. “You gather as much information as formation from who had the you can on your ancestors and rela- mumps to first-car purchases. It may be easier to search the tives. You have to start with what


Aging Answers July 2014

past using the Internet, as many websites, along with phone apps, are dedicated to genealogy research — from creating a family tree to finding a grave site. Cheney suggests sites such as, a free site that finds groups by surnames and locations. Look to for old newspapers. She also notes the U.S. Census Bureau’s records provide a wealth of information for researchers. The only census missing is from 1890, due to a fire that destroyed much of the data. The Ohio Genealogical Society, is a resource that has chapters across the state. There are also many different genealogy events held in the area. Many can be found through the Cleveland District Round Table, which is a discussion group of the leadership of the genealogical societies in a five-county district that includes Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, Lorain and Medina. “The search for our ancestors is a fascinating journey to the past,” Cheney says. “We may not have all had famous ancestors, but they all contributed in some way to society and their communities. Once you start the journey, it is always full of adventure.” Here are some helpful sites to help with a genealogy search:

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Aging Answers, July 2014  
Aging Answers, July 2014  

A Quarterly Supplement to Northeast Ohio Parent