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Complimentary issue

november 2012

Greater Longview United Way exec pushes success

Raising Gold

for Good Shepherd A show-stopping holiday meal Tax planning Flu shots and more www.infinitieplus.com

County Judge discusses

major

issues


Letter from the Publishers

T

he wellbeing of any society depends on the collective, responsive, as well as proper integration of all the elements for sustainability. These require clear definition of terms in terms of individual responsibilities and timely responses with balancing reinforcing loops of functioning organs in the system. For example, in a community, there is a head that has the responsibility of ensuring fairness in whatever is at stake. In a family, the head of a household has a significant role to play in nurturing the young ones to become responsible citizens. This requires the early understanding of being a good neighbor and keeper of others’ interest even when it calls for sacrifice from me to you and vice-versa. Let us look at our community and see what is happening now, and where we are going. Then, individuals need to ask if what he or she is doing is leading to a robust future and ecologically sustainable society. If it is in the affirmative, we need to keep the same direction, if not, we need changes. Bravo to Gregg County Judge Bill Stoudt and the Commissioners for keeping our great County budget in the green with surplus in case of emergency. Thanks for compassionately caring for our citizens especially those in dire need of mental health services. Furthermore, we use this forum and opportunity to welcome Aliceson Howell, executive director of Greater Longview United Way, one of the best non-profit organizations in our nation. She most recently married the man of her dreams, Corey Howell. We wish the couple married bliss. This month, there are book signings by local authors. Please go and support them. See details on page 21. IP also has brought you Thanksgiving feast recipes fit for kings and queens on page 28- enjoy. Have a Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Joycelyne and Robert

The Publisher welcomes input from the public. You may write or email your comments to comments@infinitieplus.com.


Volume 1 | Number 11

County Judge discusses major issues........................................... 4-6 WellnessPointe welcomes new practitioner.......................................7 Greater Longview United Way exec pushes success......................... 8-12 Congressional inaction will affect your tax planning.................14, 15 Raising Gold...................................... 16-19 Thanksgiving Graces..............................19 MKS makeover.................................20, 21 Flu shot: Recommended for just about everyone...................22, 23 It’s crunch time in America, so let’s play ball................................26, 27 A show-stopping holiday meal that won’t break the bank...................28 Army life looks good again.............30, 31 Just for chuckles.....................................31

The magazine for living life beyond...

PLUS ONE.

Publishers/Editors Robert Fadojutimi Joycelyne Fadojutimi Creative Director/Design Therese Shearer Office Manager Diane Perkins Photographer Jim King

november 2012

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Contributing Writers Kelly Bell Distribution Teddy Larose

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Advertising Information Joycelyne Fadojutimi at 903.236.0406 or jfadr@infinitieplus.com Diane Perkins at 903.236.0406 or diane@infinitieplus.com 517 Mobberly Avenue Longview, Texas 75602 903.236.0406 www.infinitieplus.com OUR MISSION

To enrich the localglobal community with the “just in time” knowledge to assure future life successes.

OUR VISION

To become an information oracle of functional and constructive reports that serve the needs of all people. The Publisher welcomes input from the public.

You may write or email your comments to comments@infinitieplus.com. infinitieplus magazine is not responsible for any discrepancies or changes since the publishing of this issue. At the time of publication, to the best of our knowledge, all information was accurate though not guaranteed. The entire contents of infinitieplus magazine are copyrighted 2012. Any reproduction or use in whole or part without written permission is prohibited. infinitieplus reserves the right to edit and make appropriate modifications. The opinions published by contributing writers do not necessarily reflect the views of infinitieplus or its advertisers.

Submission Deadline: The first of the month prior to month of issue.

16-19

28

14, 15

from the cover Judge Bill Stoudt discusses Gregg County issues and what makes the area such a great place to live on pages 4-6. Aliceson Howell and the Greater Longview United Way believes in the philosophy LIVE UNITED and in creating real and lasting change in the community. See pages 8-12 for the full story. Betty Horaney and other locals caught the Gold Rush to support Good Shepherd Medical Center. Read all about this event on pages 16-19.

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Infinitie Chronicles

regg County Judge Bill Stoudt forsakes diplomacy when it comes to financial matters. His recommendation for avoiding debt is clear and uncompromising: “Do not spend more than you take in.� Most who criticize the powers-that-be on matters of governmental debt are not taking one crucial fact into account--those who make up the government are only human. Anyone, inside or outside government, who borrows more than he can afford to repay is adding to the problem of governmental debt at the local, state and national levels. During the past three decades too many Americans, from the federal level on down, have spent more than they earned. Often, borrowers assume that they are safe because they took out their loans during times of economic prosperity. This has resulted in alarmingly high levels of debt. The period of 1950 through 1980 saw average U.S. households accumulate debt equivalent to approximately 60% of their disposable income. Then, during the 1980s and 1990s, debt levels skyrocketed to 81% of disposable personal income. Since the turn of the century, this level has jumped to 117%, meaning households owe more than they earn, after taxes. Because of easy access to credit, lax mortgage policies, gullible first-time homebuyers and increasing college costs, being in debt has become a typical aspect of American households. Total consumer debt in the U.S. soared sevenfold from 1980 to 2010, and now sits at $2.5 trillion and counting. Moreover, the average American credit card owner holds 3.5 cards, with more than one billion such cards currently in circulation. The real estate bubble and the rise of subprime mortgages during the period preceding the present financial crisis means many Americans, it turns out, could not afford the homes they purchased. To boot, consumers are going deeply in debt at increasingly early ages. Many students are already in debt when they graduate from college. According to the California-based Institute for College Access and Success two-thirds of the country’s college graduates in 2011 were still

County Judge discusses

major issues By Joycelyne Fadojutimi

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www.infinitieplus.com

jfadr@infinitieplus.com


paying off student loans averaging $26,600 apiece. The Dallas Business Journal reports that in Texas the average is $22,140. The financial crisis of 2008 is ongoing as consumers apparently have not altered their handling of financial matters. The following financial statistics bear this out: 1. Revolving debt (such as credit cards) makes up 33% of this deficit. Loans (such as car and home loans, student loans and mortgages) account for the other 67%. 2. In 2006 Americans used credit cards to pay for $51 billion worth of fast food. The previous year the total was $33.2 billion. 3. The average credit card debt per cardholder is $5100. By year’s end this is projected to increase to $6500. 4. One in ten consumers has more than ten credit cards. 5. The average consumer carries four credit cards while the average household is $6500 in debt. 6. One in 50 households (totaling two million) carries more than $20,000 in credit card debt. 7. 4.5% of cardholders are 60 or more days late in making monthly payments. 8. Annually, approximately 2 to 2.5 million Americans seek credit counseling to avoid bankruptcy. 9. Those seeking credit counseling are an average of $43,000 in debt. About $20,000 of this typically is consumer debt, while another $8500 is revolving debt. 10. The states with the highest average credit card debt per consumer are Alaska ($7665,) Tennessee ($7054) and Nevada ($6517.) Late payments on credit cards are a major factor in the constantly accumulating American debt total. This is closely linked to unemployment levels, which have not recovered from the 2008 crisis. Medical expenses are another factor impacting 30% of middle income households. The Federal Reserve Bank reports that a full 40% of U.S. households simply habitually spend more than they earn. Judge Stoudt works hard to keep the county from this pitfall, but he relies on (and gives credit to) the county commissioners for making this possible. “We have good conscientious commissioners in our county. We have sufficient reserves to deal with any emergency,” he reports. He points out that during his tenure on the bench the county’s tax base has doubled. Positives include oil and gas revenues, medical healthcare, and the boost in the housing market because of the jump in the number of first-time home buyers. Furthermore, Gregg County has become a regional shopping destination. All this works for making the county a better home for its residents, which is one of Stoudt’s main aims. “Quality of life is important to me,” he said. He hopes for a new, state-of-the-art county animal shelter, but feels it unwise to get in too big a hurry. “You want to plan it well because expediency is not the path to excellence,” he said. “Slow and steady is the way to go and I believe that is want we have to do with this issue.” He also hopes to give mental patients a higher quality of life. Handling an average of ten mental cases weekly has motivated him to look for opportunities for increasing treatment options for those needing it--such as building a permanent regional mental treatment facility. “When I first came to office I had no idea of the mental health issues that were taking place in the county,” he said. There is a coalition of regional elected officials who are delving into the possibility of establishing a Northeast Texas psychiatric facility in spite of dwindling state resources for mental health issues. East Texas Council of Governments (ETCOG) Director David Cleveland is also enthusiastic about this issue. A steering committee is the aim of 14 county judges in the ETCOG service area. This would hopefully streamline the process of assisting those with mental issues. In many cases, those needing mental health treatment go to local hospital emergency rooms or are taken there by law enforcement officers who have answered calls about domestic disturbances. Good Shepherd and Longview Regional Medical Center screen these patients and stabilize them in prepawww.infinitieplus.com

Gregg County is a great place and will be a much greater place in the years to come.”

Bill Stoudt

Gregg County Judge ration for further treatment, but neither is a long-term mental facility. Ninety-nine percent of these patients are transferred to hospitals and institutions dealing with mental health. Currently, additional screeners, transportation and reservations for beds (often in short supply) in state facilities cost the county $750,000 annually. It remains a major unresolved issue. His term has seen marked improvement. There are now five licensed medical deputies as opposed to just one when Stoudt took office. “We are trying to get mental health care to people as fast as we can,” he said. “It involves many agencies, like the hospitals, courts and social services. It is not a simple issue, but we try to speed up the process so they can get the care they need.” Cultural changes in society sometimes cause unexpected family breakdowns. Then, there is the plague of drugs as persons sometimes use them to escape painful realities. This often adds to mental problems. Stoudt feels compassion for those tormented by seeing loved ones afflicted by mental illness.

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Infinitie Chronicles “All these things are happening when the federal and state grants are drying up for mental health treatments,” he said. “It is a social issue that will not go away. It is about a lot of money.” The National Institute of Mental Health reports mental disorders are a common problem nationally and worldwide. During any given year approximately 26.2% of 18-and-older Americans are afflicted with a diagnosable mental disorders. Mental illness is a major cause of disability in the U.S., and some patients suffer from multiple illnesses. In this country, mental problems are diagnosed according to guidelines laid out in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fourth edition (DSM-IV.) According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, mental illness is

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very prevalent in Texas, with 833,000 adults and 288,000 children suffering from mental disorders. With more than six million uninsured Texans this places a massive burden on public health services. Stoudt’s upbringing helped groom him for a career in justice. His parents were a wholesome example. “My mother and dad grew up together with 60 years of marriage, and died together,” he said. Nowadays this kind of stability is not the norm. Unfortunate events sometimes change lives permanently. Stoudt absorbed a crucial lesson one day when he ran home from a playmate’s house after having a disagreement with this friend, repeating, “I hate him! I hate him!” His mother told him never to hate anybody, saying, “You may not like their ways, but you do not hate anyone.” He has made this lesson a part of his career’s modus operandi. Stoudt is proud of the way Gregg County’s residents are willing to work hard to achieve their goals. He also loves his own career. “The great thing about this job is getting the opportunity to help others,” he said. His work with juveniles has enabled him to look on as those who have appeared before his bench have grown up, married, attended college and, in some cases, returned to thank him for his strict guidance. “I had great parents, and have a great wife and daughter,” he said. “This community has been good to us, so I wanted to give back by serving the people through the office of the county judge. Gregg County is a great place and will be a much greater place in the years to come.”

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Body, Mind and Soul

WellnessPointe

welcomes new practitioner

R

By Joycelyne Fadojutimi and Kelly Bell amon Villafria was only eight years old when he accompanied his family to this country from their native Philippines. Even at this tender age he already had a medical background. Both his parents were doctors, and when they told him his future lay in medicine he agreed readily. His father took little Ramon along on medical runs, instilling in the child his parents’ love of the medical arts. Both Ramon’s sisters also followed these footsteps, becoming nurses. The trend continues as one of Ramon’s three daughters is pursuing a pharmacy degree, and one is studying dentistry. His third daughter went into computer engineering. Dr. Ramon Villafria comes to East Texas bearing impressive credentials. He served as general surgery resident at Chicago’s Mount Sinai Hospital, staff physician at Hyde Park Community Hospital in Chicago, and as medical director at Greenbrier Senior Living Center. He also spent move than 20 years as owner/operator of a successful, Illinois-based family medical practice. His love of helping others led him into family-based medicine. “I love to see people all the time, from the time they are born to the time they depart this world,” he says. Generations of his patients, their children and grandchildren faithfully come to him for their needs, confident in his ability and compassion. He now brings his gentle, competent care to Gregg County. While working at Gilmer’s East Texas Medical Center he met Carl Waters, II, who is CEO of WellnessPointe. Both sensed it was a promising encounter. “I was impressed with his vision,” said Villafria. “He is very dynamic. It is good to see someone who is not so much interested in keeping the status quo, but wants to improve, grow and make a difference in the community.” Practicing what he preaches about maintaining good health, Villafria is an avid runner, participating in marathons and half-marathons. “It is hard to tell a patient to lose weight if I am overweight,” he said. “I want to be a living example to my patients, and be an inspiration to my children. It is all about the total well-being of an individual.” Besides running three miles daily he cycles, plays golf and maintains a healthy diet. “I have never called in sick for 23 years,” he said. He is a board-certified family medicine practitioner. His awards and organizations include: • Former president, hospital staff, Iroquois Memorial Hospital • Delegate, Illinois State Medical Society • Board certification, American Academy of Family Physicians • American College of Surgeons • American Medical Association • Chicago Medical Society • Iroquois County Medical Society www.infinitieplus.com

Ramon Villafria

I want to be a living example to my patients, and be an inspiration to my children. It is all about the total well-being of an individual.”

Ramon Villafria

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Community Connections

Greater Longview United Way exec pushes

success By Joycelyne Fadojutimi jfadr@infinitieplus.com

Aliceson Howell Excecutive Director Greater Longview United Way 8

november 2012

The Greater Longview United Way believes in the philosophy LIVE UNITED. By combining the community’s caring power and working with every available resource the local Greater Longview United Way is creating real and lasting change. The most visible example of this collaborative spirit is the annual fund-raising campaign in which hundreds of volunteers are generous with their time, and multitudes of Gregg County businesses and assorted sponsors are generous with their pledges in pursuit of the 2012-2013 campaign goal of $1,340,000. Securing such a lordly sum is not easy even for the most worthy cause, but the Greater Longview United Way (GLUW), takes its stewardship very seriously. Thousands of generous, trusting donors provide the crucial dollars used to improve lives. These gifts are truly investments in Gregg County’s future, so the GLUW works year-round with the agencies that make its vital work possible. In addition, INFOline of Gregg County serves as a bridge builder, building connections between needs and resources. INFOline provides free, confidential information and referrals to 163 area helping organizations that support 526 programs. Since its inception 10 years ago, INFOline has provided i n finitie plus

www.infinitieplus.com


needed information to almost 43,000 callers, getting them connected to essential services. The Greater Longview United Way’s new Executive Director Aliceson Howell reports that United Way is always about building communities, and the Greater Longview chapter is no different. “I was born and raised in Longview,” she said. “I love Longview and will continue to work to make it greater and greater. Working at GLUW is a dream come true.” Her new position gives her the best possible opportunity to improve the lives of Longview’s residents. It has already been a successful, fulfilling year. She recalls one of her graduate classes at St. Edwards University in Austin, Texas where her class discussed the United Way- its vision and operations. “We talked about different non-profit agencies and what they do, and we studied United Way and its contributions to communities,” she said. Ms. Howell brings a wealth of skills, experience and executive leadership to her new job. She had proven herself as a results-driven, nonprofit-specializing executive well-seasoned in managing company reputations, program launches, community affairs, media relations and internal communications. Moreover, she is skilled in developing community-focused programs and messages, and has numerous, diverse contacts in multi-media communications. As a Native East Texan, she thinks the same way as those she deals with, easily navigating state and federal programs while also fostering and nurturing sincere local loyalties. From 2009 to 2012 she served as chief operating officer of Wellness Pointe, overseeing various fiscal and social service matters. She acquired needed funding and was a liaison between the clinic and numerous statewide agencies not only concerning funding, but public image, consumer advocacy and community advisory boards. From October of 2009 until July 2010 she also worked in Allen, Texas as program coordinator for WorkReady Texas, Inc., introducing the program to East Texas. As the first East Texan with this agency she dealt with a vast array of matters ranging from brand recognition to start-up communications and advocacy for disabled clients searching for jobs. From April 2007 until October 2009 she was interim executive director for Special Health Resources for Texas. She expertly fulfilled administration during one of the agency’s transition periods, seeing to staff supervision, program diversification and strategic planning. She also oversaw consumer and community groups on administrative, programmatic and legislative changes. But that is not all, from January 2004 through April 2007 she was executive director of the East Texas Administrative Resource Center and administered the Ryan White Title II Grant for the East Texas Region for the State of Texas.

And from 2000 to 2004, she was development director/college counselor at Trinity School of Texas. Howell’s other prior executive management positions include: executive director, Special Health Resources for Texas, Inc. She provided executive leadership for HIV/SIDS and substance abuse services; and crises counselor/ executive director of the Kilgore Community Crisis Center, overseeing agency management of various affairs. To boot, Howell is highly skilled at public relations and advocacy, community collaboration efforts, resource and project management, grant procurement, political awareness, research and training, information dissemination, managing crises, technical and creative writing, multi-media communications, team leadership and negotiations, and executive leadership. Her sense of community leads her to several volunteer positions: Treasurer, Children’s Advocacy Center of Gregg and Harrison counties Member, Good Shepherd Foundation Guild, Member, Grant Professionals Association Member, First Methodist Church According to Howell, she is joyfully excited about her new position at GLUW and thrilled beyond words about her personal life. Most recently, she married the man of her dreams, Corey Howell.

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“I am finally getting to live the life I have always dreamed about--happy family, good health, friends who support me, and I found the love of my life,” she said. “All these things help you to move on in life because stability and love is there for support at all times and in all things.” Most importantly, she is well aware of how stability and love in one’s life is central to professional accomplishments. Besides, her passion and devotion to Longview is unequivocal. “I want to enjoy this success and continue making Longview a great home for our citizens,” she said. “I want my children to be proud of Longview, and when they have traveled far and wide they will hopefully want to come back home to Longview, Texas.” Howell encourages local citizens to support Greater Longview United Way in which ever way they can. For more information on how to donate to or volunteer for GLUW, please visit www. longviewunitedway.org. For pictures from the wedding, see pages 10-12.

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Love, Family and Friends

s n o i t a l u t a r g n o C

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Corey and Aliceson Howell er 20, 2012

Saturday, Octob

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1. Newlyweds Corey and Aliceson Howell 2. Corey and Aliceson Howell with David and Patti Harwell 3. Austin, Aaron and Andrew Howell with John, Reed and Ali Pinkerton www.infinitieplus.com


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6 4. Corey and Aliceson Howell with Jack and Nelda Strong 5. Carolyn Ann Walgren and Jim Wallace 6. The Walgren Family: Mark, Ellen, Laura and Carolyn Ann 7. Todd Howell and Laura Williams www.infinitieplus.com

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Love, Family and Friends 9

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8. Timm Dolley, Zack Sharp, Clay Webster and Phillip Gurganus 9. Heath and Arlene Wharton 10. Thomas and Deronda Baughman 11. All the guests enjoyed the beautiful wedding and reception and wish the newlyweds a lifetime of happiness. i n finitie plus

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Getting to know s and friends,

Dear community familie

ss Pointe:

Did you know that Wellne

John Kirk, M.D. OB/GYN

Annette Okpeki, M.D. chief Medical Officer

ving East Texas? alified Health System ser Qu lly era Fed t ges lar 1. Is the munity? ple from the local com 2. Employs over 165 peo our local economy? to e enu rev ual n in ann 3. Brings over $13 millio hospital systems? al ips with both of our loc community families? 4. Has strong partnersh for over 15, 000 local me ho tal den and al dic me ry 5. Serves as the prima years? r community for over 20 6. Has been serving ou es? vic lk-in ser 7. Offers same day wa le physicians? rtified and/or Board-eligib -ce ard Bo ly on ys plo 8. Em vices? s) EKG and Spirometry ser nity vets and their familie 9. Will soon offer basic ing care of our commu tak e lov e (W ? tem sys health dicare as well as TRICARE, Me 10. Is a Veteran-friendly commercial insurances and e vat pri st mo ts cep 11. Ac e pay? ), Medicaid, and privat the whole family), (including Health Spring , Pediatrics, Dental (for ry) ive del th (wi N /GY dicine, OB astfeeding, 12. Provides Family Me seling, Urgent Care, Bre Substance Abuse Coun and e programs? vic alth ser He l ial nta soc Me er C, WI Visiting, and many oth me Ho s, sse vices with cla ser al ncy ffective medic Centering Pregna ing high-quality, cost-e vid pro for ted pec res 13. Is known and a personal touch? And… patients? . 14 Is accepting NEW

unity to become We would love the opport dental home. your family’s medical and best!

L. Richard Lucas, M.D. OB/GYN

Damon Spencer, D.D.S. chief deNtal Officer

what we do your family’s health is Taking care of you and e of our three on at ay come visit us tod Call 903.758.2610 or Gilmer. Longview, Kilgore, and convenient locations in n and passion that ica with the same ded tio ily fam r you for e car Let us for more than 20 years. er community families we have provided to oth do. nity families is what we Caring for our commu

Sincerely,

Carl I. Walters II

chief executive Officer

Visit us online at www.wellnesspointe.org

Marcy Hall, FNPC

Donna Davis, M.D.

Sylyna Kennedy, WHCNP

Wendy Markowitz, M.D.

Rikki Sandvik, WHCNP

Kristi Saxon, CNM

Mitchell Lane, PA-C

Estela Torres, WHCNP

Terri Alexander, PNPC

Phillip Boaz, RN

Harold Campbell, M.D.

Ramon Villafria, M.D.

OB/GYN

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Pediatrics

Pediatrics

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Pediatrics www.infinitieplus.com Nurse MaNaGer

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november Pediatrics 2012

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Money Talk

Congressional Inaction Will Affect Your ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮

Tax Planning

✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ ✮ By Terry Savage Congress went home recently. They left their jobs undone. But they went back to persuade you to re-elect them to the same job. In fact, they went home to persuade you to contribute to their campaigns to get re-elected. And while they’re campaigning, you should do some tax planning. Each representative gets paid $174,000 a year. (The “leaders” — the majority and minority leaders — get $193,400.) Our congressional represen-

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Think of it this way: If you told your employer that you hadn’t finished your work- or, in fact, hadn’t really started your workand that you were “leaving early,” what do you think would happen?

tatives participate in a generous health-insurance plan. They also get free parking at the office and Washington, D.C., airports, child care, free meals at the legislative dining hall and cheap membership to the House gym. And, of course, there is all that time off: Out of 260 working days in a year, Congress works only 137 of them! Wouldn’t you want a job like that? Wouldn’t you get the job done if you had it? Wouldn’t you be embarrassed to ask for financial help (campaign contributions) to keep your job if you hadn’t done it? What Congress DIDN’T do: • Congress didn’t pass a budget. In fact, Congress hasn’t passed a budget for the federal government in the past three years. They did manage to pass a “continuing spending resolution” in the last minutes before they adjourned last week. But that spending increases our national debt by more than $1 trillion every year. • Congress didn’t deal with the debt ceiling. Well, that follows the budget issue. If you think you can keep overspending because you don’t have to create a budget, and if you can depend on the Fed to keep creating money and making it easier to borrow by keeping rates low, then you don’t have to worry about running out of credit. The only thing they could all agree upon was to postpone raising the national debt ceiling until after the election. • Congress didn’t deal with impending tax increases. It’s automatic. The “Bush tax cuts” will disappear at year-end. And taxes will go up across the board in January. It’s not the sensible way to deal with a still-foundering economy. But Congress didn’t deal with the tax issue either. • Congress didn’t deal with automatic spending cuts. These cuts into

✮✮✮✮✮✮✮ You’d be fired, for sure. 14

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military and domestic programs, totaling $109 billion, will go into effect at year-end — because Congress couldn’t agree on a rational deal before Thanksgiving last year — an important deadline, which they simply ignored. What do all these critical issues have in common? Congress didn’t do their job! No matter what side of the aisle you’re on, you’re paying the bill for this non-performance. Think of it this way: If you told your employer that you hadn’t finished your work — or, in fact, hadn’t really started your work — and that you were “leaving early,” what do you think would happen? You’d be fired, for sure. Well, you’re the boss. You have the vote. Yet according to the independent, nonprofit Center for Responsive Politics (www.OpenSecrets.org), more than 95 percent of those serving in the House of Representatives are re-elected each year. Exceptions occurred in 2010 and in 1992, when “only” around 85 percent of members were re-elected. Maybe if Congress had as much reason to fear unemployment as you do, they would at least do their jobs. But you’re the only ones who can fire them for nonperformance. Yes, it’s possible that there could be a last-minute deal in the “lame duck” session after the election in November and December. If some members of Congress are not re-elected, they might be more inclined to work together before the new Congress is sworn in come January 2013. Or they might be more likely to hold out, despite the consequences, if they know their party has gained seats to pass their version of legislation next year. More likely, just as they passed the continuing spending resolution before departing Washington last week, the will create a temporary fix to extend the decision out until next spring. They’re good a passing the buck. This Congress goes down in history as by far the least productive, in terms of passing bills, of any in history. In the meantime, the U.S. could have its credit rating downgraded. The stock market (and your retirement funds) would become increasingly volatile and vulnerable. And lack of any agreement by year-end would result in a leap over the fiscal cliff and into a more devastating economic slowdown. That is no recipe for a happy holiday season. So what should you be doing? Start your year-end planning now, despite the uncertainty. • Don’t overspend on holiday shopping if you haven’t planned for higher taxes and withholding next year. There will be less left over in your check to pay the bills. • If you own stocks (outside your retirement plan) with a long-term capital gain, consider selling now — before the year-end rush — to take advantage of the current low capital gains tax rates, scheduled to expire December 31. • Consider converting one or part of your IRAs to a Roth IRA, so you can pay taxes at the 2012 lower rate — and withdraw later on a tax-free basis. • Sad to say, but charitable deductions will be worth more to you next year, if rates rise. You might postpone your annual giving to the New Year. But beware that in 2013, reverting to pre-2010 rules, there will be a cap on itemized deductions for higher-income earners. • Very wealthy people must consult estate planners now, before the estate tax returns in January at the $1 million level. (Since that “estate” includes the value of your home and retirement plan, and maybe even your life insurance, the cliff on estate taxes will impact even the very middle class.) You can see how this uncertainty is already affecting financial decisions and slowing the economy. So there is one more thing you must do no matter what your political preference: Demand that the Congress do its job! You’re paying for it. You should at least get your money’s worth. And that’s The Savage Truth. Terry Savage is a registered investment adviser and is on the board of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. She appears weekly on WMAQ-Channel 5’s 4:30 p.m. newscast, and can be reached at www.terrysavage.com. She is the author of the new book, “The New Savage Number: How Much Money Do You Really Need to Retire?”

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Bankruptcies Asset Protection Mergers & Acquisitions Accounting Services Audits, Reviews & Compilations Bookkeeping/Write-up c e rt i f i e d p u b l i c a c c o u n ta n t s Forensic Accounting a p r o f e s s i o n a l c o r p o r at i o n Financial Statements “Professionalism in the accounting profession Financial Forecasts & Projections Cash Flow & Budget Analysis means integrity, objectivity, independence, Tax Planning & Preparation adherence to professional standards, and a IRS Representation demonstrated will to maintain and improve Payroll Services the quality of professional services.” Sales Tax Services Estate & Trust Tax Preparation Consulting Services Accounting Software Selectio n & Implementation Business Succession Planning Business Valuations Buying & Selling a Business Estate Planning Financial Planning Retirement Planning Management Advisory Services Business Consulting Pension & Profit Sharing Plan s Investment Review Debt & Financing Services 1223 Judson Road | Longview Business Entity Selection Employee Benefit Plans Expert Witness Services

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903.757.4071

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Community Connections

Raising

Gold Lacy Maxey

By Joycelyne Fadojutimi jfadr@infinitieplus.com ood Shepherd Medical Center titled its 39th annual Gold Rush fundraiser “Pistols and Pearls.” Co-chairs Christy O’Rear and Phyllis Jolley described preparing for the function as a lot of hard work, but enjoyably fulfilling. District 7 State Representative David Simpson was delighted with the event’s large turnout. “It is good to see so many people supporting our loved ones, children, the aged and the weak,” he said. Buckner Westminister Place Executive Director Wes Wells and his colleagues were also delighted with the evening’s success. The funds raised by the Gold Rush finance medical facility expansion and Good Shepherd’s new graduate medical education program.

G

Missie Pirtle 16

Eleanor and Dr. John Kirk november 2012

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Betty Kindle, Betty Horaney and Jeanette Barkett

Bo and Amy Davis

Debra Pruitt

Dr. Randy Morton and Dr. Kim Vannest

Paul and Alay Hancock

Sam and Jill Snead

Austyn Pilgrim, Donna Pilgrim and Lauren Lee

Cindy Bell

Jim and Paula Brandon

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Community Connections

Wes and Kristy Wells and Michelle and Blake Lambert

Tim and Leighanne Watson

Debra Stewart and Rosalind Cantue

Kilgore Rangerettes Hannah Price, Caitlyn Giorioso and Carly Marston 18

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Dot Maxwell

Brett and Kelly Hall

Judge Bill and Suzanne Stoudt

Christy Orear and Phyllis Jolley

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Well Read

“Thanksgiving Graces” shows when you give, you get Written by Mark Kimball Moulton | Illustrated by David Wenzel c.2011 | Ideals Children’s Books | $14.99 / $15.99 Canada | 26 pages

Rep. David and Sue Simpson

Margaret Harris

Richard Pirtle

Brittany Trich

Georgia Grant

Patricia Hawkins

Alisa Beck www.infinitieplus.com

For as far back as you can remember, your parents have taught you that sharing is the right thing to do. You’ve always been told to let others play nicely with your toys and look gently at your books. If you have candy, you’re encouraged to give someone else a bite. You might share your day, a silly story, a snuggly blanket, a seat, or a box of colors. When you have abundance, it’s always nice to share. And as you’ll see in the book “Thanksgiving Graces” by Mark Kimball Moulton, illustrated by David Wenzel, when you give, you also get back. It’s Thanksgiving Day, and everyone’s getting ready. The turkey smells soooo good in the oven and the whole family is helping set the table. Grandma’s making pies when there’s a knock on the door. It’s the neighbor, Charlie, and she asks him to stay for dinner. There’s plenty of food and plenty of room at the table for him. Charlie says he’d be glad to stay, but only if Grandma and Mom would let him pitch in and help. He rolls up his sleeves and plunges his arms into hot soapy water. Having someone to wash dishes is always a big help. When the door opens a minute later, it’s big brother Jim, home from college and he’s not alone. He brought a friend, but that’s okay. There’s plenty to eat and lots of room for two more. Jim sneaks a taste of what’s on the stove, and Mom laughs. Jim has done this before. Then everyone hears the sound of a horn honking. Two more people arrive and Grandpa adds another table at the end. Another guest calls to see if she can bring her cousin and her mother. Every time someone asks if there’s room for an extra, the answer is always “Yes! Of course!” But as the table gets longer and the room seems smaller, one young host gets a little worried. Grandma didn’t make a lot of pies. There weren’t many potatoes boiling on the stove, and the turkey wasn’t very big – was it? Would there be enough food at this Thanksgiving table? Sometimes, particularly when you’re a kid, it’s hard to separate the “thanks” of Thanksgiving from the legends, the parades, and the fun. But this sweetly gentle little story, told in rhyme, explains the real meaning behind why we gather. In author Mark Kimball Moulton’s holiday house, there’s love, warmth, and welcome as the table slowly expands to make room for every new arrival. I loved the quiet worry in the words of Moulton’s young narrator and I loved the simplicity of Moulton’s story-poem, but neither would be the same without artist David Wenzel. One look at Wenzel’s illustrations, and you can almost hear the laughter in this perfectly thankful book. Two-to-8-year-olds will love “Thanksgiving Graces,” but I don’t think anyone of any age would mind a read-aloud this holiday. Whether yours is a feast for two or a fete for two thousand, this is a book to share. infinitie plus

november 2012

19


Auto Scène

MKS Makeover

Lincoln’s Big Sedan Debuts New Styling, More Power and Drivability By Mark Maynard The Lincoln MKS is an understated sedan ... until you rip lose its knotted necktie and pull the shifter into Sport mode. That simple, pleasure-inducing action sends a jolt to the 365-horsepower, Ecoboost V-6 and this luxo-cruiser swings like a businessman’s battle-ax. I tested a top-line Mark S (MKS) with all-wheel drive and the 3.5-liter, direct-injection V-6, which has a healthy 350 foot-pounds of torque that runs steady from 1,500 to 5,000 rpm. Pricing for this model, standard with AWD, starts at $50,675, including the $875 freight charge from Chicago. In standard trim, the front-drive model has a 300-hp, 3.7-liter V-6 and starts at $46,685 or $45,680 with AWD. All models have a six-speed SelectShift automatic with steering wheel shifters, but the Ecoboost (turbocharged) model gets a heavy-duty transmission. All models come with four-years or 50,000-miles of free, scheduled maintenance, including oil and filter changes and tire rotations. MKS is a large sedan, competing with such cars as the Acura RL, Cadillac XTS and Chrysler 300. For 2013, MKS has been redesigned with the new styling direction of Lincoln. The vertical bars in the grille are thinner and more elegant, framed by HID headlights. The lower fascia was cleaned up to create an impression of low, wide and planted. There were redesigns to the trunk and rear fascia (now with LED tail lamps). Inside, there is a new instrument panel, new color schemes and new premium materials and more of the Scottish Bridge of Weir leather with attractive stitching. Ride quality has been refined with the electronic Lincoln Drive Control, 20

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which responds to inputs from the driver and road. Sport mode sharpens shift points but also ride firmness, throttle response and steering feel. The handling becomes flat and predictable, particularly with all-wheel drive. The heart of the suspension is Continuously Controlled Damping, which monitors shock-absorber settings up to 500 times a second and can adjust the ride quality 20 times a second. The 3.7-liter V-6 has estimated fuel economy of 18 mpg city and 27 mpg highway, a 3-mpg highway improvement from 2012. Active grille shutters open and close depending on engine cooling needs. When fully closed, the shutters help reduce aerodynamic drag by 6 percent, which improves highway fuel economy. The EcoBoost V-6 - more responsive than some V-8s I’ve tested - has fuel economy of 17/25 mpg. The engine can run on 87 octane fuel, but premium is required for that V-8 lunge. There is a hands-on directness to driving the MKS. It feels protective and proactive. The electric steering was retuned for quicker, more fluid action; there is no bogging in response when sawing the wheel through a series of S-turns. The four-wheel discs are larger and vented, now at 13.85 inches front and 13.58 rear. The cabin is quiet but not numb to inputs from the road. The test car’s cabin was masculine with black leather, black fabric headliner, subtle chrome and dark wood. Sightlines are open and there is simplicity to the driver controls, even with the MyLincoln Touch controls. There has been much grumbling about these smartphone-like touch and sliding controls, but it only takes a few minutes of tutorial to master the actions. And there are several redundant steering wheel controls. www.infinitieplus.com


2013 Lincoln MKS AWD Body style

large, 5-passenger, front-wheel-drive sedan

Engine

parking sensors, adaptive suspension, adaptive headlights, fog lights, LED taillights, 20-inch polished wheels and V-rated all-season tires, tilt-telescopic steering column, leather-wood steering wheel,

aluminum, 365-horsepower, direct-injection 3.5-liter V-6; 350 foot-pound torque from 1,500 to 5,000 rpm

Safety features include

6-speed SelectShift automatic

$50,675, including $875 freight charge; price as tested $58,265

17/25 mpg city/hwy; premium fuel recommended for peak power 19 gallons

Premium package, $4,600, includes blind-spot monitoring, single CD-HD audio, heated steering wheel, adjustable pedals, power rear sunshade, rearview camera, navigation system, multicontour seats, heated rear seats, lane-keeping assist, premium wood; dual-pane moonroof $1,695; adaptive cruise with collision warning $1,295

19.2 cubic feet

Chicago

39.7/41.9/58.6 inches

4-years/50,000-miles bumper-to-bumper with free scheduled maintenance; 6-years/70,000-miles powertrain

6 air bags, ABS, traction and stability controls

Transmission

Base price

Fuel economy

Options on test vehicle

Fuel tank

Trunk space

Where assembled

Front head/leg/shoulder room

Warranty

Rear head/leg/shoulder room 38.5/38.6/57.4 inches

Length/wheelbase 205.6/112.9 inches

Curb weight 4,436 pounds

Turning circle 39.4 feet

Standard equipment includes

keyless access with push-button ignition, forward and reverse

With a 12-way power adjustable driver seat, tilt and telescopic steering wheel and optional pedal adjustment, the MKS can fit just about anybody. Also standard is a 12-way power front passenger seat and heated and cooled front seats. It is time, however, to add an electric parking brake and the front doors need a second grab area on the armrest for better leverage when opening and closing. The back seats are raised with a generous 38.6 inches of legroom, good footroom under the front seats and comfortable seatback angle. A fold-down armrest has storage, cup holders and access to the ski pass-through. Trunk space is expansive and tall at 19.2 cubic feet. The Premium package, $4,600, includes desirable features, including Active Park Assist, which will park the MKS faster than most humans can. Also in the package are blind-spot monitoring and lane-departure warning, navigation system, rearview camera, multi-contour seats, heated steering wheel and heated rear seats. Adjustable cruise control with collision warning, $1,295, should be considered by all who have long commutes in heavy traffic. It’s another set of eyes on the road that combined with lane-departure and blind-spot monitoring add layers of protection. You will like the MKS if you are seeking a robust Americanmade car. You’ll love this car after a Sport-charged run with the Ecoboost V-6..

Mark Maynard is driving in cyberspace at mark.maynard@utsandiego.com. Find photo galleries and more news at Facebook.com/MaynardsGarage.

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november 2012

21


Body, Mind and Soul

Flu Shot

Recommended for Just About Everyone

By Dr. David Lipschitz

A

s fall continues, I hope that everyone will remember the importance of receiving the influenza vaccination. These days, it could not be easier since the vaccine is now routinely given at your neighborhood pharmacy. Who knows whether this flu season will be mild or severe? There is always the possibility that a rapid outbreak of an unusual strain of the influenza virus can lead to millions of cases of infection, a great deal of suffering and many deaths. This year, there appears to be an outbreak of influenza that can rapidly spread from pigs to man. Since July, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports a rather large number of infections with an influenza A virus (H3N2) that predominantly affects pigs but can readily spread to people. For this reason, the CDC urges that anyone planning to attend a state or county fair be vaccinated as soon as possible. To date, most infections have occurred in young children with little immunity against the influenza virus. However, serious disease may occur in anyone at high risk, including young children, pregnant women, anyone with a reduced ability to fight infections, people with heart disease or diabetes and people over the age of 65. A vaccination is required annually, as each year the influenza viruses included in the vaccination change. 22

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Every February, a committee of the World Health Organization determines which of the numerous strains of the virus are likely to cause the most infections. As the flu is predominantly an illness that occurs during the winter, epidemiologists track which viruses are causing the most havoc in the Southern Hemisphere. As winter approaches the viruses march northward. They can always lead to serious illness, particularly in those who have not been vaccinated. Currently each vaccine provides protection against three strains of virus (trivalent vaccine), but soon, a new vaccine that protects against four different strains should become available. So should we all be vaccinated? The CDC recommends that everyone 6 months and older receive yearly vaccinations. If supplies are limited, it is critical that the vaccine be given to those at the highest risk, including children age 6 months to 4 years, pregnant women, anyone over age 50, and those with severe lung disease, a suppressed immune system, morbid obesity or diabetes. Anyone under the age of 18 taking aspirin must be vaccinated, as they are more prone to develop a serious complication from influenza called Reye’s syndrome. Every nursing home patient should be vaccinated, as should all health-care providers, caregivers or workers who come in frequent contact with young children or older people. For the very old and those with the greatest difficulty fighting infections, a high-dose flu shot i n finitie plus

should be considered. Called Fluzone HD, this vaccine contains four times as much antigen (a protein in the virus that stimulates the immune system to produce antibodies). Research has shown that the high-dose vaccine is as safe as the regular kind, and leads to a much more robust immune response in those over the age of 65. The experience with this vaccine is still insufficient to determine if the higher dose provides a greater protection against developing a severe infection. The CDC emphasizes that the high-dose vaccine should not be used in anyone under the age of 65. Some elect to receive the influenza vaccination as a nasal spray. This form should not be used in children between the age of 6 and 23 months or in adults over the age of 50. A doctor’s prescription is not needed for a flu shot. Whether receiving the vaccination from a pharmacist or another health care provider, ask whether other vaccines should be given. The evidence is compelling that vaccination is the most critical way to prevent serious complications from influenza. Remember that if you are young and healthy and become infected, not only will your symptoms be significant, but spreading the virus to everyone around you may lead to a life-threatening infection in someone much more susceptible than you.

Dr. David Lipschitz is the author of the book “Breaking the Rules of Aging.” More information is available at www.drdavidhealth.com.

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fast Flu s t c fa What is influenza (also called flu)? The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses that infect the nose, throat, and lungs. It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. The best way to prevent the flu is by getting a flu vaccine each year.

Signs and symptoms of flu People who have the flu often feel some or all of these signs and symptoms: • Fever* or feeling feverish/chills

• Cough • Sore throat • Runny or stuffy nose • Muscle or body aches • Headaches • Fatigue (very tired) Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults. *It’s important to note that not everyone with flu will have a fever.

How flu spreads

Most experts believe that flu viruses spread mainly by droplets made when people with flu cough, sneeze or talk. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby. Less often, a person might also get flu by touching a surface or object that has flu virus on it and then touching their own mouth, eyes or possibly their nose.

Period of contagiousness

You may be able to pass on the flu to someone else before you know you are sick, as well as while you are sick. Most healthy adults may be able to infect others beginning 1 day before symptoms develop and up to 5 to 7 days after becoming sick. Some people, especially young children and people with weakened immune systems, might be able to infect others for an even longer time.

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How serious is the flu? Flu is unpredictable and how severe it is can vary widely from one season to the next depending on many things, including: • What flu viruses are spreading, • How much flu vaccine is available • When vaccine is available • How many people get vaccinated, and • How well the flu vaccine is matched to flu viruses that are causing illness. Certain people are at greater risk for serious complications if they get the flu. This includes older people, young children, pregnant women and people with certain health conditions (such as asthma, diabetes, or heart disease), and persons who live in facilities like nursing homes. Flu seasons are unpredictable and can be severe. Over a period of 30 years, between 1976 and 2006, estimates of flu-associated deaths in the United States range from a low of about 3,000 to a high of about 49,000 people.

Complications of flu Complications of flu can include bacterial pneumonia, ear infections, sinus infections, dehydration, and worsening of chronic medical conditions, such as congestive heart failure, asthma, or diabetes.

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25


Body, Mind, and Soul By Marilynn Preston ll of this 2012 election talk of small ball-big ball issues has really got me focused on the best ball you can have to strengthen and stabilize your core. Yes, I’m talking about the exercise ball, a low-cost and highly effective way to tighten your torso, boost your flexibility and prevent a variety of aches and pains, all while watching “Dancing with the Stars” in the comfort of your own living room. An exercise ball, a.k.a. stability ball, looks like a rubber beach ball on steroids. It comes in different sizes because people come in different sizes, and you can use it in a variety of wayssitting, rolling, bouncing- to develop the 29 muscles

It’s

around your hip, spine and midsection. Why is it important to keep your core strong? I’m so glad you asked. Your core muscles support your spine, maintain good posture and help you keep your balance. If your core is weak, over time, you’re a doctor’s visit waiting to happen. You wake up in the morning with twinges of back pain. You slouch, your tummy sags, you don’t look as good as you would if your core muscles were trim, taut and ready for action. The main action of the exercise ball is to engage your core muscles, and one of the best ways to do that is the well-executed crunch. Ab crunches will not get rid of your belly fat; you cannot spot reduce! But crunches on a stability ball definitely contribute to a stronger core. Here’s how to do the basic version: Position yourself on the exercise ball so that your knees are bent, your feet are flat on the floor, and you’re lying on it with your lower back fully supported. Balls live to roll, so take your time and don’t begin the crunch until you feel stable and relaxed. Then take a few deep breaths, focusing attention on your abdominal muscles. Cradle your head lightly in your hands, or keep your fingertips barely touching your forehead. If that throws you off, just relax your arms or fold them across your chest, and wait for your confidence- and muscles- to build. Now engage your abs, and slowly roll up, raising your shoulders to no more than a 45-degree angle. Do not sit upright, or you’ll lose all the tension in your core. Here’s the action that makes all the difference: In the lifted position, hold and s-q-u-e-e-z-e

Crunch Time in America, So Let’s

Play Ball

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your belly button back toward your spine. Then slowly lower back down to the starting position. There are many variations on the basic move. You can push the ball away from your feet as you roll up, and then draw your knees back toward your feet as you lower. You can also do a variety of upper body twists on the ball once you’re in the semiupright position. To increase resistance and build more muscle, twist while holding a medicine ball. The wider you spread your legs the easier it will be to balance. As your balance improves, you’ll want to challenge yourself more by moving your feet closer together. Do as many crunches as you can, and then squeeze out one or two more. Remember: Quality always beats quantity. Keep your form, keep your focus, and keep breathing. Your exercise ball can also give you a great spinal stretch, front and back. First lie down on it, face up, and when you’re stable, slowly lower your head toward the floor, leaning back as far as you can. Then flip over, in control, allowing your front body to drape over the ball, and let go of all

your tension. Say “ahhhh...” Be sure to use the right size ball for your height. A basic rule is that your hips should not be lower than your knees when you sit on the ball. If you’re shorter than 5-foot-9, use a 55-centimeter ball. If you’re taller, use a 65-centimeter ball. Over 6 feet, and you’ll need a 75-centimeter ball. Exercise balls are sold everywhere, including online at www.resistaball.com, and you can find a zillion free workout videos on YouTube. You can also replace your traditional desk chair with one that incorporates an exercise ball. And finally, if you do get one, give it a name. I call mine Gov. Christie.

Our growing softness, our increasing lack of physical fitness, is a menace to our security.” John F. Kennedy

Marilynn Preston’s website, is marilynnpreston.com. She always welcomes reader’s questions at MyEnergyExpress@aol.com.

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november 2012

27


Grubs Up

Sweet Potato and Parsnip Purée

Roast Turkey with Mushroom Stuffing

Green Bean Casserole

A Show-Stopping

holiday meal That Won’t Break the Bank All hosts want to delight guests with delicious meals, especially during the holidays. The pressure often leads them to spend a fortune on ingredients or cater their gatherings. The experts at Campbell’s Kitchen have created this traditional holiday menu, proving that it’s possible to prepare a memorable, gourmet feast by combining affordable, quality ingredients. For more affordable holiday tips and recipes, visit www.CampbellsKitchen.com. Roast Turkey with Mushroom Stuffing Prep: 25 minutes Roast: 3 hours 30 minutes Stand: 10 minutes Makes: 12 servings 3 1/2 cups Swanson Chicken Stock (Regular or Unsalted) 3 tablespoons lemon juice 1 teaspoon dried basil leaves, crushed 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves, crushed 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper 1 stalk celery, coarsely chopped (about 1/2 cup) 1 small onion, coarsely chopped (about 1/4 cup) 1/2 cup sliced mushrooms (about 1 1/2 ounces) 4 cups Pepperidge Farm Herb Seasoned Stuffing 1 turkey (12 to 14 pounds) Vegetable cooking spray 1. Stir 1 3/4 cups stock, lemon juice, basil, thyme and 1/8 teaspoon black pepper in a medium bowl. 2. Heat remaining stock, remaining black pepper, celery, onion and mushrooms in a 4-quart saucepan over medium-high heat to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover and cook for 5 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Remove saucepan from heat. Add stuffing to saucepan and mix lightly. 3. Remove package of giblets and neck from turkey cavity. Rinse turkey with cold water and pat dry with paper towel. Spoon stuffing lightly into neck and body cavities. Fold any loose skin over stuffing. Tie ends of drumsticks together. 4. Place turkey, breast side up, on a rack in shallow roasting pan. Spray turkey with cooking spray. Brush with stock mixture. Insert meat thermometer into thickest part of meat, not touching bone. 28

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5. Roast at 325°F for 3 1/2 to 4 hours or until thermometer reads 180°F. Baste occasionally with stock mixture. Begin checking for doneness after 3 hours of roasting time. Let turkey stand for 10 minutes before slicing. Notes: • Bake any remaining stuffing in a covered casserole with the turkey for 30 minutes or until the stuffing is hot. • Stuffing in the turkey should reach 165°F.

vegetables well in colander. 2. Place vegetables, broth and butter into food processor. Cover and process until mixture is smooth. Add brown sugar, black pepper and chopped chives. Cover and process until mixture is just combined. Garnish with additional chives.

Moist & Savory Stuffing

Green Bean Casserole

Cornbread Turkey Pot Pie

Prep: 10 minutes Cook: 10 minutes Bake: 30 minutes Makes: 10 servings (about 3/4 cup each) 2 1/2 cups Swanson Natural Goodness Chicken Broth Generous dash ground black pepper 2 stalks celery, coarsely chopped (about 1 cup) 1 large onion, coarsely chopped (about 1 cup) 1 package (14 ounces) Pepperidge Farm Herb Seasoned Stuffing 1. Heat broth, black pepper, celery and onion in a 3-quart saucepan over medium-high heat to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover and cook for 5 minutes or until vegetables are tender, stirring often. Remove saucepan from heat. Add stuffing and mix lightly. 2. Spoon stuffing mixture into greased 3-quart shallow baking dish. Cover baking dish. 3. Bake at 350°F for 30 minutes or until stuffing mixture is hot.

Prep: 10 minutes Bake: 30 minutes Makes: 12 servings (about 3/4 cup each) 2 cans (10 3/4 ounces each) Campbell’s Condensed Cream of Mushroom Soup (Regular, 98% Fat Free or Healthy Request) 1 cup milk 2 teaspoons soy sauce 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper 8 cups cooked cut green beans 2 2/3 cups French’s French Fried Onions, divided 1. Stir soup, milk, soy sauce, black pepper, beans and 1 1/3 cups onions in 3-quart casserole. 2. Bake at 350°F for 25 minutes or until bean mixture is hot and bubbling. Stir bean mixture. Sprinkle with remaining onions. 3. Bake for 5 minutes or until onions are golden brown.

Sweet Potato and Parsnip Purée

Prep: 15 minutes Bake: 30 minutes Makes: 4 servings (about 1 1/2 cups each) 1 can (10 3/4 ounces) Campbell’s Condensed Cream of Chicken Soup (Regular or 98% Fat Free) 1 can (about 8 ounces) whole kernel corn, drained 2 cups cubed cooked turkey 1 package (about 8 ounces) corn muffin mix 3/4 cup milk 1 egg 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese 1. Heat oven to 400°F. Stir soup, corn and turkey in a 9-inch pie plate. 2. Stir muffin mix, milk and egg in medium bowl just until combined. Spread batter over chicken mixture. 3. Bake for 30 minutes or until topping is golden brown. Sprinkle with cheese.

Prep: 15 minutes Cook: 15 minutes Makes: 4 servings (about 3/4 cup each) 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 3 cups) 4 medium parsnips, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch slices (about 2 cups) 1/4 cup Swanson Natural Goodness Chicken Broth, heated 2 tablespoons butter 2 tablespoons packed brown sugar 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives Additional fresh chives for garnish 1. Place potatoes and parsnips in 4-quart saucepan. Add water to cover. Heat over medium-high heat to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover and cook for 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Drain

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Cornbread Turkey Pot Pie

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november 2012

29


Opinion

e f i L y Arm Good s k o Lo n i Aga

By Joe Volz ack in the 1930s, Army life looked pretty good to a lot of young Americans mired in a Depression with unemployment at 25 percent. They used to have the saying: At least you got “three hots and a cot.” Now, with unemployment heading toward 10 percent, the economic advantages of Army life are looking beneficial. It is definitely not the Army this GI Joe remembers. Forty-five years ago, I was a $110-a-month intelligence analyst assigned to Cold War Germany. Now that the Army has advanced so far from the days when pay was low, it might be time for all the veterans in the audience to remember fondly, or not so fondly, those good old days. I was a member of the “brown boot” Army in the years after World War II, but before Vietnam. We were just “transitioning” from olive drab Ike jackets

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and brown shoes into fancy dull green uniforms and black shoes. Awhile back, I returned to Fort Dix, N.J., the huge Army base in the south New Jersey pinelands, to see just how the modern Army had advanced. The base — named after Maj. Gen. John Adams Dix, a Civil War hero and later a New York governor — introduced thousands of young man, and women in recent years, to the rigors of Army life. We learned how to fire now-obsolete M-1 rifles, throw hand grenades and pick up cigarette butts (they called that exercise, “policing the area”). Today’s all-volunteer Army is much more civilized than the Army of the past, which was filled with disgruntled draftees. They regularly went AWOL “absent without leave,” and the stockade next to my barracks was always full of customers. However, they tell me that today’s soldiers actually want to be in the Army. So, perhaps, some of the lessons I learned in this man’s Army almost half a century ago may no longer apply in today’s Army, which promises to help you “be all that you can be.” For one thing, I learned that “goldbricking” was a common way of life. For those born in recent decades, the word meant that you did your best to avoid work. You went into hiding when they were looking for someone to clean the mess hall, for example. I was sent off to Germany after going through a nine-week “intelligence analyst” course at Fort Holabird in Maryland, which consisted mainly of typing classes. When it came time to deploy, I suggested that maybe I should be sent to France, since I had studied French for a number of years. When I arrived in Germany, the headquarters of the 66th Counter Intelligence Corps in Stuttgart did not need any analysts; instead a file clerk was needed. I became a file clerk and never did any intelligence analyzing at all. I was a librarian in fatigues. I understand in the modern computerized and soldier-friendly Army that type of misuse of the troops rarely happens anymore, or so they say. Yet there was plenty to do at headquarters. I went out for the base football team that required a few practices a week, and I discovered that I could get a free week in the Bavarian Alps if I wanted to attend a religious retreat. I did. Today, the Army offers all sorts of education benefits if you want to sign up. But we were not completely without education opportunities in the old days. As a matter of fact, the Army had an “early out” program. We could leave as early as three months if we wanted to head off to college and the semester was about to start. I found that the University of Munich was offering German courses, so I www.infinitieplus.com


Just for Chuckles

applied and went to Munich for a few months. It was an enjoyable time attending class and eating Wiener schnitzel. All these years I thought that I had gotten a good deal in the Army. It wasn’t until I learned that today’s analysts are getting $20,000 bonuses that I realized how much Uncle Sam undervalued us old brown-boot troopers. But, then again, maybe we were just a bunch of patriots. We certainly weren’t in it for the money. E-mail Joe Volz at volzjoe2003@yahoo.com or write to 2528 Five Shillings Rd., Frederick, MD 21701.

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