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SPRING | 2019

LIVING BETTER AFTER 55 IN NORTHERN MICHIGAN

LIVE YOUR BEST LIFE UP NORTH! WALK YOUR WAY TO HEALTH HEAL WITH MUSIC INVEST FOR THE KIDS...& THEIR KIDS START THE BEST BOOK CLUB EVER ADOPT THE RIGHT DOG FOR YOU VOLUNTEER LIKE A PRO

PLUS CAREGIVER CONFIDENTIAL REAL LIFE ADVICE FOR RIGHT NOW

A supplement to

WHAT’S IN YOUR BUCKET? A HANDY RETIREMENT CHECKLIST FROM THE EXPERTS PREDIABETES SILENT SIGNS AND SOLUTIONS


Clarity

There are times when the choice is crystal clear.

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Independent Living 231-995-9385 & Assisted Living 231-932-9757 3850 Scenic Ridge, off Silver Lake Road Traverse City MI 49684 TTY #800-649-3777 www.villageatbayridge.com


INSPIRED LIFE

WELCOME TO INSPIRED LIFE. At the heart of this magazine: the idea that at every age, we share a common love of this place we call home. Meet new neighbors embracing adventures—both big and small. Find real advice for taking good care of the assets and places we hold dear. Tap into a true joy for the outdoors that keeps our inner lives vibrant and our bodies well. Connect. Join in. Find smart and new ways to inspire your life Up North. —the Editors

ADVERTISER DIRECTORY Active Brace and Limb....................................................................................................16 Addiction Treatment Services......................................................................................28 Autumnwood of McBain................................................................................................28 Boardman Lake Glens.....................................................................................................20 BrightStar Care.................................................................................................................28 Covell Funeral Homes.....................................................................................................28 Culver Meadows.............................................................................................................. 24 Edward Jones.....................................................................................................................12

CONTENTS

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9

25

KEEPING YOU MOBILE

HAVE THE BEST BOOK CLUB ON THE BLOCK

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26

13

33

14

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SECOND CAREERS SPARK GROWTH

THE WISDOM OF BUYING & EATING LOCAL

FOR Investment Partners................................................................................................ 6 FYZICAL Therapy & Balance Centers..........................................................................16 Gauthier's Shoes and Repair ......................................................................................... 8 Great Lakes Orthopaedic Center.................................................................................20

BENZIE SENIOR RESOURCES WINS AWARD

MUSIC & ALZHEIMER’S

Grand Traverse Pavilions - Wellness Center..............................................................16 Grand Traverse Resort and Spa...................................................................................... 4 Greenleaf Trust.................................................................................... Inside Back Cover Harbor Care Associates, LLC.........................................................................................36 Hemming & Wealth Management..............................................................................30 Hospice of Michigan......................................................................................................... 8 Kalkaska Memorial Health Center...............................................................Back Cover Monarch Home Health Services..................................................................................20 Munson Healthcare ........................................................................................................18 NMC Extended Education............................................................................................... 8 Northern Michigan Diabetes Initiative......................................................................... 8 Perry Farm Village........................................................................................................... 24 Pineview Cottage............................................................................................................36 Reynolds Jonkhoff Funeral Home................................................................................ 24 Swensen Memorials........................................................................................................20 The Village At Bay Ridge..................................................................Inside Front Cover Traverse Vision................................................................................................................. 24

HOW TO VOLUNTEER LIKE A PRO

WHAT IS PREDIABETES?

COMPANION DOGS

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A PUBLIC GARDEN COMES ALIVE

CAREGIVER’S CONFIDENTIAL

HOW TO MAKE WALKING A HABIT

INVEST FOR THE KIDS ... AND THEIR KIDS

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5 EASY TO-DOS TO CHECK OFF YOUR RETIREMENT PLAN LIST

MyNorth Inspired Life is produced by MyNorthMedia. Advertising and editorial offices at: 125 Park St., Suite 155, Traverse City, MI 49684. 231.941.8174, MyNorth.com. All rights reserved. Copyright 2019, Prism Publications Inc. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.

MyNorth INSPIRED LIFE | SPRING 2019

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Second Careers Spark Growth Former high-level executives hang up their suit jackets and head to Northern Michigan in their retirement—only they don’t retire. Not quite yet anyway. BY COURTNEY JEROME

Armed with skills they’ve tailored in their 30+ years in the corporate world, Ted Gedra and Jeff White are now giving their new enterprises all they’ve got. And the perfect place to put their passions into business? Ludington. Find out how these two are bringing vibrant energy and big opportunities to this Northern town. TED GEDRA’S DNA

He was introduced to the Up North lifestyle by his grandfather in 1957. By the time Ted was a teen, his love for the Ludington area “permeated his DNA.” Throughout his over 30-year career at Grand Rapids-based shoe company, Wolverine Worldwide, he took his family North, too. So when he retired at 60 years old, and knew he needed to keep busy, it was a natural fit for Ted to take his skill set and start a business in Ludington. “During my travels, especially early on in my career, I’d travel to the west coast,” explains Ted, now owner of Ludington Bay Brewing Co. “That’s where the craft beer industry was starting to take hold. I found that one of my passions, one of the things I really enjoyed as I moved up the ladder, was spotting trends in the marketplace and conceptualizing products in those emerging markets.” Seeing a hole in microbrew distribution, Ted decided to take the plunge and jump in after he retired. He opened Ludington Bay Brewing Co. in 2017. “I went into another industry but I took my skill set that I learned in the shoe business and I feel like it applied. You need to have good branding instincts, good positioning instincts, spot trends,” Ted explains. “Most of all you need to have really good people. And that’s the other thing I really enjoyed—building a team and creating a culture behind that team that we were building. I've been very blessed by having a fantastic team in Ludington. “The beer industry I can’t say enough about—it’s so collaborative. I never had an awkward moment about the whole decision,” says Ted. “You can’t ever do anything in this world unless you have a passion for it. And I had a passion for craft beer and the

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industry,” he continues. “I had a lot of people who looked at me and said, ‘Are you crazy? You just got done traveling! Why?’ But to me it's just so much fun. I don’t see it as work at all,” he says. “I am having a blast!” JEFF & JEAN WHITE’S “RETIREMENT”

Why not a traditional retirement for the Whites? In their mid and late 50s, “It was time to do something on our own and not report to anyone but each other,” explains The Lake House waterfront event venue owner, Jeff White, of his and his wife Jean’s new venture. “We just felt it’d be fun and worthwhile to do something on our own and do something in the area we love, which is Ludington.” So that's what they did. They left Indiana—where they both had extensive marketing careers—and moved back to Jeff ’s hometown of Ludington. Before the big move back, they had continued to visit the area regularly as their careers continued, noticing one particular piece of Ludington land. “We’ve always looked at this land with great value because of its view,” says Jeff. “My wife was the one who said this would be a great event venue.” They purchased the land in late winter 2018, and by August ground was broken for an event venue site boasting beautiful harbor views and sunsets. “Growing up in the sales side of the business from account managers to running a TV station, researching customers’ needs is just as important,” explains Jeff. Their background of developing a brand and its message while marketing to the right platforms has been a beneficial skill in the White’s industry transition, he says. “I think people need to know they don’t need to be caught up in their current job if they don’t enjoy it,” advises Jeff. “It can be scary to take that jump but if you see an opportunity, take it. As you balance life and career and kids, you try to keep it as balanced as you can. Take the leap for your family’s well being,” he recommends. Then he adds with a laugh: “It probably takes a little bit of age to figure that out.”


INSPIRED LIFE

Ludington Bay Brewing Co. Fast Facts • Supporters of Michigan-made and locally sourced products • Canned beer distribution throughout West Michigan • Huge outdoor patio open all four seasons • Live entertainment on Fridays • Event room on second floor of brewery for private parties • Stop by for a beer tour!

The Lake House’s Fast Facts TED GEDRA

PHOTO BY ALICIA MAGNUSON PHOTOGRAPHY

• Venue available for weddings, business meetings, community events, and for nonprofit organizations’ needs • First vows will be exchanged June 2019 • Views of lighthouse and lakeshore (yes, that means sunsets!) • 6200 square foot indoor space and 2000 square foot outdoor patio • Partnered with Ludington’s Table 14 as exclusive in-house caterers

MyNorth INSPIRED LIFE | SPRING 2019

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GRAND TRAVERSE RESORT AND SPA

TENNIS GOLF FITNESS SPA DINE SHOP SOCIAL

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GET UP AND GO WITH 7 WAYS TO PLAY AT THE CLUB

Enjoy seven ways to play as a member at Traverse City’s most inclusive health and fitness club. Several packages are available for a variety of budgets and interests, including our Bear Membership which provides VIP privileges and discounts throughout our property. Join as a new Bear Member and receive a Resort welcome package valued at over $200.

231-534-6586 | grandtraverseresort.com Owned and Operated by the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians


INSPIRED LIFE

THE WISDOM OF BUYING & EATING LOCAL Get insights from Tricia Phelps, local food ambassador and CEO of Taste the Local Difference, Michigan’s local food marketing agency. BY COURTNEY JEROME

TRICIA PHELPS

Tell us what brought you to Traverse City, and ultimately, to your role at Taste the Local Difference. Local food systems were just beginning to pique my interest when I graduated college so when I received a job offer from SEEDS to help manage the Sara Hardy Farmers Market in the summer of 2011, I jumped at the chance. Soon after, I accepted a full-time position at the Minervini Group helping with the Village at Grand Traverse Commons events and communications. I would weave in local food where I could by managing the year-round farmers market and writing content for my own food blog. In 2014, I was offered a full-time position at Taste the Local Difference, which quickly transformed from sales and coordination in Northwest Michigan to statewide operations management and finally CEO in October 2017. How do you incorporate the Taste the Local Difference mission into your lifestyle? I belong to a year-round CSA (Community Supported Agriculture), which means I pick up a box of fresh fruits and vegetables on a weekly basis from the farm down the road. At first, I was intimidated by CSAs because I wasn’t an experienced cook and would often waste some of the produce. But now I love it because I try new recipes all the time based on what’s in my box that week or what’s on its last leg. And the convenience of less shopping is a blessing for me. I try to incorporate as much local as possible outside of the CSA share and when we eat out, too; frequenting places like Raduno, Harvest and a new favorite: Fustini’s Fresh Take. Planning a few meals ahead each week is the best advice I can give. That can mean prepping on Sunday or just gathering quick recipes and ingredients to have on hand. This time of year, I use the slow cooker at least twice a week.

PHOTO BY JOSH HARTMAN

What are the health benefits of eating locally sourced foods? My favorite health benefit to eating locally is that produce is most nutrient dense when it’s ripe and harvested just before eating. The more hours it takes to get food from the farm to your plate, the more nutrients it loses in the process. Additionally, because our food usually travels so far to get to us (an average of 1,500 miles!) non-local produce is often picked before it’s actually ripe. Buying local produce means it travels fewer miles and is picked at its peak, which is better for our health and tastes a lot better, too. There are many economic benefits as well. Spending more of your money with local farms makes farming in this area a sustainable career choice for young people. Without that market for local food and more young people becoming farmers, the beautiful farmland that helps define our natural landscape will be lost and developed.

Shape Up North is a community collaboration dedicated to helping Northern Michigan residents benefit from healthy eating habits and an active lifestyle. shapeupnorth.com

MyNorth INSPIRED LIFE | SPRING 2019

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ASK AWAY! We want to know what’s on your mind. When formulating a financial plan, all questions are fair game.

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INSPIRED LIFE

LET’S MEET Traverse City-based Mecky Kessler-Howell and Kristi L. Avery of FOR Investment Partners are dedicated to developing lasting relationships with all of their clients. “Setting up a financial plan is really a partnership between us and the client. Our goal is to help investors be an advocate for themselves, and to show them how to be active in the process,” says Avery. “When considering life after work, I like clients to ask, ‘Where do I want to be? Who do I want to be?’ Once I have a clear idea of your values and goals, FOR Investment Partners will help you look at how to balance work and leisure, and how to make smart choices for the future.” FOR Investment Partners takes a modern, fresh, intentional approach to investing and retirement planning. It all starts with meaningful conversation.

It’s easy to reach out...

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MyNorth INSPIRED LIFE | SPRING 2019

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You Can Live With Diabetes • Know your risk. Take the test on nmdi.org. • Talk to your health care provider or diabetes educator. You can live life to the fullest. To learn how, call 231-935-9227 or visit nmdi.org.

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10850 E Traverse Hwy #1155 A member of the

Care Community


INSPIRED LIFE BRIAN PARK

KEEPING YOU MOBILE What to know if your feet need a little extra TLC.

PHOTO BY DAVE WEIDNER

BY COURTNEY JEROME

While Gauthier’s Shoes and Repair in Traverse City is well known for their shoe repair, it is also famous for fantastic footwear advice and helping people find the best shoe to fit their lifestyle. On the team at Gauthier’s: owner Tina Martin and shoe/orthopedic technician Brian Park. “We have a vast knowledge of what happens to the human body as a person ages and what we can do to make the pain more manageable or reverse the process altogether,” says Brian. “A few examples of the more common issues we run into with our aging customers are plantar fasciitis, swelling of the feet and/or ankles, bunions and arthritis,” he explains. And what type of footwear does the team tend to recommend as the easiest to get into as we age? “Velcro-closure

and slip-on shoes,” says Brian. “It is important to us to carry a large variety of shoes to accommodate the needs of all our customers and keep them mobile.” Another example: if you’re the type of person who prefers to be barefoot, and you’ve gone shoeless for most of your life, your feet will age differently than most. “A lot of times, people will tend to go barefoot on hard surfaces for years of their life and as a result will lose the thin layer of fat on the bottom of their feet that provides valuable cushion. With this, the customer will tend to need a softer shoe that will give them the proper cushion for their feet,” Brian says. “In a more opposite direction, a number of customers spend most of their lives wearing a shoe that was far too soft, which causes balance issues

and problems with their gait later on in life,” he continues. “And some customers are in need of more than just a pair of shoes. When dealing with plantar fasciitis, a pair of shoes isn't the only answer to alleviate the pain. Most of the time a supportive pair of insoles or orthotics can really make all the difference. We carry a great variety of tested and true insoles and orthotics that will take the stress off the plantar fascia areas of the foot so the foot can heal correctly. The combination of a great pair of shoes and an insert can quickly relieve the pain caused by a variety of foot problems.” For more from Brian and to see him in action (how do you repair a shoe, anyway?) at MyNorth.com/shoestore

MyNorth INSPIRED LIFE | SPRING 2019

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Volunteers are more than just inexpensive (eh-hem, free) help for organizations. They’re ambassadors. #1 fans. And coworkers with their sights on similar missions. That’s how Brad Kik of Crosshatch Center for Art & Ecology describes them. With their nonprofit mission to make our region stronger and more self-sustainable, they know a thing or two about the importance of volunteering. Volunteers are essential elements for many organizations’ survival. And perhaps you’re ready to dive on in and help. But what does it take to be the best volunteer you can be? How do you find the right fit for you in an organization—let alone the right organization to be part of ? Here are Brad Kik’s (and fellow Crosshatch staffer Daniel Marbury’s) top tips on how to make the most out of your gift of time. If someone has interest in volunteering, what do you recommend they consider before starting so they can find the perfect role? “As a potential volunteer, especially a first timer, first think about the work you want to do. It might be worth writing down some answers on paper to help sort out your vision for how to spend your time—and then save a lot of hassle for you and for the nonprofits you work with, which comes from a bad fit or a misunderstanding around expectations. “Here are some questions you want to ask yourself: How much time do I want to spend volunteering? Do I want to 10

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spread it around or focus it all on one organization or project? Do I want to go all in on one particular project, or give a set number of hours to the organization as a whole? (For example, do I want to put in a single 40 hour week to help build a new bike trail, or do I want to put in a half day every month to maintain a trail?) “Indoor work or outdoor? How physically strenuous? What skills can you offer? Often we get stuck thinking of volunteers in low-skill tasks like data entry, poster hanging, or physical labor, and forget about the many needs we have like marketing or fundraising support, graphic design, or a host of skills like construction, landscaping, etc. “Also, do you want to meet folks and work in groups? Do you want to travel to a site to volunteer, or do you want to offer solitary work from your home office? “It helps to be clear and honest about your hopes and expectations for volunteering. Are you hoping to learn something in particular? Hoping to get some quality time with someone who works for that organization? Hoping to leverage a future employment opportunity? Often folks just want to advance the mission of the organization and have time to offer, but sometimes there's a further piece that's worth exploring. “As a final thought, look for a good fit with the volunteer coordinator as much as with the mission of the organization. Look for someone who will take the time to communicate with you about your role and your future with the

PHOTOS BY MELISA MCKOLAY

BY COURTNEY JEROME


INSPIRED LIFE

PHOTOS BY MELISA MCKOLAY

Once you’ve started volunteering, how do you become amazing at it? “Stay engaged. Our different projects and events at Crosshatch require many aspects of working together and many different skill sets to succeed. “The best gift you give yourself and the organization you are supporting is to offer a consistent willingness to take on a variety of tasks—this is especially true as you are just starting to get involved. Remember that even by taking on a very simple-process task as part of a larger project, you will get a fuller sense of all of the parts that work together to make community change possible. “It’s really inspiring to me as volunteer coordinator and to our volunteers when someone finds their niche and really excels in a role. This kind of synergy really puts wind in the sails of Crosshatch's efforts to keep doing the work of our mission.” —Daniel Marbury Can you tell us about the relationships Crosshatch has with volunteers? “The relationship Crosshatch has with our volunteers is a partnership built on passions! Many of our volunteers come to our organization as participants in our programming for art, agriculture and ecology. After connecting at a learning workshop, networking event, performance or demonstration, people who are inspired to learn and engage to a greater extent often choose to follow up by volunteering for a future event. “Volunteering with Crosshatch often gives you a ‘backstage pass’ to experience a program or event in a fuller way, such as meeting our performing artists or farm instructors. We are believers that the best way to learn is by rolling your sleeves up and doing something, and Crosshatch volunteers truly engage in the essential parts of making our programs happen. “By staying engaged and continuing to share their joy and talent with us, some volunteers even become our educators and performers for future events and programs.” —Daniel Marbury

THE GIFT OF YOU...

organization, and not just slot you into a time and place as an afterthought. Know that really small or young organizations may not have a well developed program and so might require more initiative on your part, or might frustrate you with their inability to provide the structure you need. Really large organizations (especially local implementations of national nonprofits) will probably have very rigid structures that you might find a good home in but might not be the right fit for you, and they probably won't have a huge capacity to flex or tailor an experience. Spend the time to get to know your own needs and then make sure an organization is willing to have that conversation with you.” — ­ Brad Kik

Why reach out to volunteer? Often supporting local causes introduces you to the community you’ve always wanted to know. And when we put our collective effort into something, the ripple effects of good are endless. Here are just a few of the Northern Michigan nonprofits to which you might consider lending your skills and talents. CROSSHATCH CENTER FOR ARTS & ECOLOGY CROSSHATCH.ORG FATHER FRED FOUNDATION FATHERFRED.ORG FISHTOWN PRESERVATION FISHTOWNMI.ORG HEADWATERS LAND CONSERVANCY HEADWATERSCONSERVANCY.ORG GROW BENZIE GROWBENZIE.ORG NORTHWEST MICHIGAN HABITAT FOR HUMANITY NORTHWESTMIHABITAT.ORG SAVING BIRDS THRU HABITAT SAVINGBIRDS.ORG

MyNorth INSPIRED LIFE | SPRING 2019

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INSPIRED LIFE

WHAT IS PREDIABETES? We talk signs, solutions and strategies with Frankfort’s Melissa Krajnik, RDN MELISSA KRAJNIK, RDN

PHOTO BY JOSH HARTMAN

BY COURTNEY JEROME

More than one in three Americans have prediabetes. But the majority of these people don’t even know they have it. What’s even scarier is that many prediabetes symptoms are silent, and if they’re not treated within five years, can lead to type 2 diabetes and other serious health issues such as stroke and heart disease. But what exactly is prediabetes? “It’s a condition where blood sugars are higher than normal but not high enough to be considered diabetes,” explains Melissa Krajnik, RDN, at Paul Oliver Memorial Hospital in Frankfort. How do you know if you have it? Doctors will normally run a panel of labs at your annual checkup where you can see if your blood sugar ranges within 100-125, and A1C between 5.7-6.4%, says Melissa. You’ll also feel weaker and thirstier than normal as it’s progressing to diabetes. Some also notice changes in their vision, which tends to be self-misdiagnosed due to aging. While there are unchangeable risk factors involved in being diagnosed with prediabetes such as family history, ethnic backgrounds, and a personal history of gestational diabetes, there are changes people can make in their lifestyles to help prevent diabetes. “We want to make healthy food choices, increase our activity, maybe be put on diabetes medication, and have friends,

family and community support. With all those four things put together, we can improve their blood sugar,” shares Melissa. “We can change being overweight, having high blood pressure and an inactive lifestyle.” As for help making healthy food choices, Melissa recommends paying attention to portion sizes at our meals, and benefiting from sources such as choosemyplate.gov and diabetesandmindfuleating.com. Melissa explains, “Mindful eating is going to be a great way for people to look at overeating. Why are we eating? Are we hungry? Bored? Upset? People overeat because of that.” Another recommendation she has is losing weight to avoid needing medication, or to help get off it. “Losing 7% of your body weight, or 15 pounds if you weigh 200 pounds, should keep diabetes at bay,” she says for those who are overweight. At Paul Oliver Memorial Hospital, monthly Lunch and Learns are hosted about diabetes and nutrition, plus monthly pre diabetes community education classes on the fourth Tuesday of the month, which Melissa instructs. These classes are free and a prediabetes diagnosis isn’t required to join. Learn more by calling 231.352.2273 or visiting munsonhealthcare. org/pomh.

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Companion Dogs We’re not just talking an excuse to get out for a walk or a furry friend to sit next to. While great reasons for retirement age to be a great time to adopt, having a pet can also bring stress reduction and health benefits, too. BY COURTNEY JEROME

Something special happens when you’re greeted by a four-legged friend. Tail wagging. Tongue out. Pure joy as he awaits your pat on the head. Pure joy for him, and for you. Retirees are reminiscing about their childhood with canines and embracing that joy once again in their retirement years by adopting a dog. Cherryland Humane Society in Traverse City has seen a steady number of retirement adoptions over the past few years. Why? For the numerous benefits adopting a pet can bring. For example, Cherryland Humane Society Executive Director, Heidi Yates, shares that five to 15 minutes of animal therapy a day can help lower blood pressure. Whether it’s through adoption or bringing dogs to different assisted living locations across Northern Michigan such as MediLodge and Cherry Hill Haven, the Cherryland Humane team regularly sees the joy dogs give to retirees. “It’s a win-win. The dogs get the love they deserve and the residents get the benefit of having the dogs there.” For those looking to bring a dog back to their own homes, Cherryland Humane has a full-time behaviorist on staff who is specially trained to match the right dog for you, and keep your furry friend’s life enriched until you get there. “We really try to provide enrichment and behavior modification so when retirees come in we can try to match up with the appropriate animal. Sometimes people don’t know where to start,” Heidi says. “We have a behaviorist on staff who is here to match. Do you have an active lifestyle? Or sedentary? Do you like dog parks, etc.? We listen and try

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to match that up. It takes a village. It’s not just taking in animals and turning them around. We want to make sure it’s a forever home.” Plus if you need a little help preparing for a new pet at home, Cherryland Humane Society and Traverse Outdoor Landscaping and Irrigation have teamed up for a scholarship program, so that every dog gets a five-week training course for free, providing tips, tricks, and socialization—both for the dogs and the retirees. Not ready to commit full time but want to share the love? Join Cherryland’s dog walking program. “You’ll go through our volunteer program (the 2nd Saturday of every month), and join retiree Sue Schwartz,” explains Heidi. “She’s done this for 10 years and is in charge of the dog walkers. First you shadow someone, as you take dogs off site, and then you’ll join a dedicated group of people. “If you can’t have a pet, you can come here and get your animal fix!” HEIDI’S TIPS FOR ADOPTING:

• Do your research. Discover what breed will fit your lifestyle. Recognize any size/weight restrictions for your residence. • Visit. Stop by the shelter to see some dogs looking for a home like yours. • Have a plan. If something happens to you, make sure you have a plan for the animal. If you’re looking for a puppy who’s going to live for 15 years, that’s great! Just make sure you have a plan for him. Learn more at cherrylandhumane.org.


INSPIRED INSPIRED LIFE LIFE

More Ways to Share the Love

SILVER MUZZLE COTTAGE RESCUE & HOSPICE Many canines late in their years find themselves area shelters. The Silver Muzzle Cottage Rescue & Hospice is a Michigan-based rescue and hospice on a mission to provide senior, disabled and hospice dogs the chance to live out their remaining lives with love and dignity. Volunteers are the heart and soul of this rescue. Their goal? Shed light on the value, beauty and grace of these dogs and the ways they enrich the lives of those who foster or adopt them. Here are two meaningful ways to get involved: COTTAGE FRIENDS PROGRAM Enrich the lives of these senior dog rescues by taking them for hikes in the woods, strolls on the beach and the occasional swim. Or for those dogs too limited to enjoy a more active lifestyle, quiet companionship is all that is needed. SENIORS FOR SENIORS PROGRAM SMC volunteers take senior dogs to visit area nursing care facilities. This meaningful activity brings joy not only to the facility residents but also to the dogs who participate. Go to silvermuzzlecottage.com to find out more about how you can get involved and help. MyNorth INSPIRED LIFE | SPRING 2019

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INSPIRED LIFE

A PUBLIC GARDEN COMES ALIVE The Botanic Garden on the grounds of Historic Barns Park Traverse City is bursting with growth and life. We checked in with The Garden’s Karen Schmidt about how planting and prep across the garden’s 25 acres is coming to fruition. BY EMILY TYRA

What should those craving color and life expect to see in bloom this spring? This spring will be a truly beautiful one at the Garden. We have over 50,000 bulbs in the various gardens, including 40,000 daffodils, hyacinths and Glory of the Snow bulbs in the long Sugar Maple Allee. There will be lots of tulips in the Koeze Stable Garden and the adjoining Secret Garden. Those are the only places where we can grow tulips because the deer are not able to get into these gated walled gardens. What’s new at The Botanic Garden? We begin work this spring on the Pollinator Garden, which will feature lots of bright flowers that attract butterflies, hummingbirds, bees and other pollinators. Work on the Judith Groleau Healing Gardens begins this spring, too. Tell us more about the Healing Gardens... The first project will be the installation of a 60-foot-wide stone labyrinth, which will be wheelchair accessible. It is a copy of the famous Chartres Cathedral labyrinth in France and will take 12 weeks to construct over the summer. But just as exciting is the arrival garden, which will feature a Native

American Medicine Wheel. We are working with members of the Ottawa and Chippewa Band of Grand Traverse for their assistance in the design. The Healing Gardens will also include a Medicinal Plant Garden and small pocket Meditation Gardens. And there is a close-knit team behind the scenes at the gardens, correct? Each team has a captain and once a week the captains walk their gardens with our horticulturist who advises them on what they need to do that week. We also have a team of trained docents who give free daily tours from April 1 through October 31. A third team of volunteers is our Grounds and Maintenance Team (we call them the Possums) who do the heavy lifting. In total we have 325 volunteers and are always looking for more. We are almost all volunteers, including our 20-member board.—Karen Schmidt is Botanic Garden Board Chair DIG IN! For more info on becoming a docent or volunteer caretaker at the Botanic Garden, thebotanicgarden.org/volunteer

MARCH EVENTS AT THE BOTANIC GARDEN FERNTASTIC! | Sunday, March 10th, 3-4:30 p.m. Angie Lucas, Senior Land Steward at the Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy, will present an overview of native fern species found in our region, identification tips to use while exploring the woods or wetland trails, and other fun fern facts.

PHOTO BY DAVE WEIDNER

LANDSCAPING FOR THE BIRDS, BEES AND BUTTERFLIES | Wednesday, March 13th, 7-9 p.m. Local experts Brian Zimmerman and Tom Ford will discuss how to create a garden landscape to attract bees, butterflies and birds, beginning with native plants. Guidance on plant selection, nesting boxes, mason bee houses, and providing water for wildlife will be shared. SQUARE FOOT GARDENING FOR ALL | Thursday, March 21st, 7-9 p.m. Sandi Clark, MSU Advanced Master Gardener, will discuss the history of square foot gardening and share her wisdom on building, utilizing and reaping the benefits of a square foot garden. Take home Sandi’s presentation and a copy of Mel Bartholomew’s book. $30 Register for all classes at thebotanicgarden.org/events. Proceeds from paid Botanic Garden events benefit the Garden. For free event registration, you’re able to make a donation online through MyNorth Tickets when you check out.

MyNorth INSPIRED LIFE | SPRING 2019

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D O RI S LO L L

BENZIE SENIOR RESOURCES WINS AWARD The Benzie County Chamber of Commerce awarded the organization its Community Impact Award. BY GREG TASKER

PHOTO COURTESY OF DEANNE LOLL

Every Monday Doris Loll plays cards at The Gathering Place, the senior center run by Benzie Senior Resources, in downtown Honor. On Wednesdays, she’s there stretching, bending and doing her best to maintain agility at age 90. Other days of the week, Loll receives home-delivered meals from Benzie Senior Resources, and also help in other areas, including lawn care, snow removal, window washing and house cleaning. “It’s a wonderful resource,” says Loll, a retired nurse who once led the Wednesday morning exercise class that still bears her name, Stretch with Doris. “You should see the amount of people who come in for meals. I’ll be there playing cards and they just pour in. There’s really something there for everyone.” Loll is one of hundreds of Benzie County seniors taking advantage of the services offered by Benzie Senior Resources. Nearly one-third of Benzie’s senior population—or 1,763 residents—tapped the organization for some sort of assistance in fiscal 2018. Thirty-three percent of the county’s population is 60 and older. “We’re serving people from 60 to 100 plus—that’s a 40year stretch. We’re trying to tailor to the needs of that large demographic,” says Doug Durand, the organization’s executive director. “We’re an aging society, and the needs in each age group (each decade of aging) are so different. People tend to need additional services as they get older.”

Benzie Senior Resources is the result of the marriage of the Benzie Council on Aging and Benzie Home Health Care in 2016. That merger created one umbrella group offering seniors a multitude of services under one roof. The services offered by Benzie Senior Resources run the gamut and fall under five main categories: home services, health and safety, meals and food, social connections, and support services. In a nutshell, the organization offers almost everything under the sun, from home-delivered meals and home health care to medication management and medical equipment loans to social activities. Since the merger, the organization has seen a spike in demand for services. In the last three years, most programs have experienced 50 to 75 percent growth, Durand says. “The publicity from the merger created more awareness in the community, even though we’ve been around one way or another for 40 years or more,” he says. Helping the center serve the senior community are 30 employees, 17 contractors (those hired to plow snow, mow, provide light home duties) and an army of 151 volunteers. “The volunteers are mainly seniors,” Durand notes. “The senior group brings phenomenal resources of their own to the community. They’re active and they want to stay active. They’re a very vibrant group that brings a lot of economic activity to the community.”

RESOURCES NEAR YOU Each county in Northwest Lower Michigan has either a Council or a Commission on Aging that provides services directly to seniors. Subsidized by local millage funds and/or state and federal dollars, these agencies help eligible seniors with yard work, house cleaning, personal care, transportation, and much more. Some services may have waiting lists or limitations on the number of hours provided. Payment is usually required, typically on a sliding scale. Services and terms vary widely from county to county—important to remember for seniors who plan to relocate. Most communities also have senior centers that provide recreational and social activities. To connect with senior services available in your area, contact the Area Agency on Aging at 800.442.171, AAANM.org

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Music & Alzheimer's BY COURTNEY JEROME

“Music felt like home for my father,” shares Mary Ellen Geist, award-winning journalist, author, filmmaker and singer who divides her time between Detroit and Walloon Lake. Mary Ellen left her 20­‑plus year journalism career and returned home to Michigan, helping her mother care for her father who suffered from Alzheimer’s. She reflected on her time spent at home by writing Measure of the Heart, and received local and national press for it. Since then, Mary Ellen has continued to share her first-hand perspective of caring for a loved one with Alzheimer's, and the power of healing through music. What led you to the transition from your book, Measure of the Heart, to giving lectures about Alzheimer's and the healing power of music? It was a natural progression that grew organically from the way caregivers suddenly find themselves part of a common tribe of what’s believed to be millions of spouses, children, relatives and friends all across the U.S. who are taking care of someone with Alzheimer’s or some form of dementia. And all of us need help. As I began to connect with the caregiving community when I came home to take care of my father, I was shocked by how many people did not use music in their caregiving routines and had never even thought of it until I introduced them to it. My father was a jazz singer and so am I. We communicated with our music and I incorporated it into our caregiving routine. After my book came out and I started giving lectures about it, the response was overwhelming. One woman wrote me a very emotional letter telling me about sitting sadly (and quietly) in a nursing home next to her mother who because of Alzheimer’s could hardly speak. Because of what I had shared 22

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with her about using music, she played her mother’s favorite CDs and they began to communicate again—singing together, or just holding each other’s hands as they looked into each other’s eyes listening to music. She told me it made the last few months of her mother’s life peaceful, and an event that she felt she could fully share with her mother. Can you tell us more about these lectures? I give several types of lectures about music and caregiving. I have given workshops at nursing homes and hospitals and the response has been amazing. I take caregivers through the exercise of using music as part of the caregiving routine and I explain how I work with Alzheimer’s patients. One facility in Northern Michigan started taking CD players with them to visits with Alzheimer’s patients in povertystricken rural areas. The response was so positive, they wrote and received a grant to purchase dozens of CD players and CDs which they now give out to caregivers and patients as part of their Alzheimer’s treatment. That’s what I so often want to emphasize: music is medicine. Music can heal, sometimes even better than a drug. What kind of emotional insights do you give others on how to encourage interaction with a loved one they’re caring for? And how about interaction via music specifically? One thing I preach: don’t try to make the Alzheimer’s patient come in to your world. Go in to THEIR world. It can become almost like a game. Let THEM take charge rather than you leading the way whenever possible. You don’t need to correct them. Listen as much as possible. When I work with people I don’t know, I hold their hands and look into their eyes while playing music. Sometimes, especially if they are having trouble speaking, this alone is a way


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of communicating that brings them back into the world. It creates a shared human experience that can bring them “back to life,” as some music therapists refer to it. I know it seems hard to believe, but I can give you countless examples where an Alzheimer’s patient who was thought to be unable to speak started speaking again with the addition of music into their caregiving routines. Can you share with us a time music helped you care for your father? When I came home to help my mother take care of my father, I asked her what the worst time of her entire day was with my father. She said it was in the morning, when he woke up, and he began to have a look of terror in his eyes. She says she was convinced he didn’t really know where he was, he didn’t know who SHE was, and she said she was afraid he didn’t know who HE was, either. She would hold him tight, and tell him: “You are Woody Geist. And I am your wife Rosemary. And you are in your home.” It broke my heart. I asked her if she would mind if I snuck into the bedroom before he woke up (he almost always woke up at about 10 a.m.) and played one of his favorite CDs as he started waking up. He loved Frank Sinatra’s “Wee Small Hours of the Morning.” I played that quietly as he stirred awake, sometimes singing along, and then he opened his eyes, actually smiling! He started singing along with the song. He looked at me and he knew exactly who I was. And he knew who my mother was, too. It actually started off my father’s—and our—day with a kind of joy instead of the sorrow and terror of not knowing where he was. (Sometimes we danced, too, in our pajamas. I tell all caregivers to dance whenever possible!) Eventually I incorporated music into almost all of our caregiving routines: Cole Porter’s “Night and Day” worked well in the shower. Anything by the jazz singer Diana Krall helped with sundowning (when people with Alzheimer’s get agitated in the late afternoon.) And if my father was very depressed, sometimes almost catatonic, if I played the University of Michigan fight song “Hail to the Victors” he almost always sprang back to life and started singing along! Do you have recommendations for people who would like to learn more about Alzheimers and the healing power of music? I created a list of resources on my website at maryellengeist.com and you can also find lots of resources at musicandmemory.org and aliveinsideus.org.

AN OLD MISSION MUSIC DUO Jerry Wares spent months studying how to make harps when his wife Marilyn developed an interest in playing 15 years ago. Nowadays, people travel from all over the country to purchase one of his handmade Gabrielle Harps that he makes from their home on Old Mission Peninsula. And Marilyn travels across Northern Michigan to play these harps for others, healing with her music. “Music is magical,” says Marilyn. “I have found that my harp music can make the difference between withdrawal and awareness, between isolation and interaction, between despair and comfort, and most of all between demoralization and dignity.” Marilyn plays music for both friends and strangers at different walks of life and in different situations. However every time she plays, she senses a healing connection. “It really speaks to their soul. It is therapy.” From playing at funerals and nursing homes, to homes of blind children and those on hospice care, Marilyn feels her music makes a difference. “Music brings dramatic results to patients who have Alzheimer's, dementia, and other memory disorders, too. Patients who sit slumped in their wheelchairs become animated and start moving,” she shares, smiling. “I feel blessed to carry my harp into these settings.”

MyNorth INSPIRED LIFE | SPRING 2019

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HAVE THE BEST BOOK CLUB ON THE BLOCK

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A Leland book club shares the secret to going strong for over two decades. BY COURTNEY JEROME

THE INVENTION OF NATURE, ANDREA WULF

Here are a handful of reads that recently sparked lively discussions.

ALL THE LIGHT WE CANNOT SEE, ANTHONY DOERR A GENTLEMAN IN MOSCOW, AMOR TOWLES THE DEATH AND LIFE OF THE GREAT LAKES, DAN EGAN MOZART'S STARLING LYANDA LYNN HAUPT UNNECESSARY WOMAN, RABIH ALAMEDDINE

Since 1996, Leelanau Books has hosted a local book club. The format has evolved over the years, but members now meet monthly from September through June in Leland to discuss both fiction and non-fiction stories. “There is something quite energizing to have a really good discussion—we come away with a refreshed mind,” says Leelanau Books owner, Paula Alflen. “Reading and reflecting about a book is a kind of therapy, and this group has melded in such a way that we all feel a positive energy when we finish reading and then discussing, and sharing, a stimulating book.” Here, Paula and her book club share their top five reasons why having a book club is the “best thing in the world” and why theirs works so well in their Northern Michigan community. 1. THEY’RE AN OPEN CLUB “Anyone is welcome, which means we get a wonderful diversity of people and opinions,” says Paula. Leelanau Books’ club members are welcomed from not only locally in Leland, but from surrounding towns such as Northport, Glen Arbor, Cedar, Maple City, and Suttons Bay, too. 2. THEY MEET IN THE MORNINGS “We meet in the late morning, finishing around noon, a time that seems to be workable for our members. We prefer to not be going out at night. We do however often meet for lunch after the discussion session at a local restaurant, which is great for getting to know each other personally,” explains Paula. Plus, at the end of the season they host a social celebration, where they brown-bag lunch at a member’s house in Leland.

3. THE BOOKSTORE HOSTS AND MODERATES “Because we have the fortunate venue of the book store, no one has to prepare their home,” says Paula. Leelanau Books provides hot beverages for attendees and a moderator who steers conversations away from politics and religion. “We have a very respectful and tolerant membership, so members feel safe expressing their opinions—it’s an easily flowing conversation.” 4. ATTENDANCE IS FLEXIBLE “If you’re out of town, no problem,” Paula says. “We don’t meet in July or August which is typically too busy for everyone (including the bookstore!).” While some members join only in the spring, others join in the fall, allowing for flexible attendance. Plus, Leelanau Books encourages members to attend even if they haven’t read that month’s book. “They often find themselves adding to the discussion, and actually appreciating the book—which they now want to read for sure—in a different way, but doing it sort of backward,” says Paula. 5. ANONYMOUS BOOK SUGGESTIONS & VOTING SELECTION “We select our books by submitting suggestions at the end of the season, and then we vote for ten (the number of months we meet),” explains Paula. “We do not know who has suggested any of the books, so we can feel more open about expressing our opinions and not causing offense.”

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PHOTO BY JOSH HARTMAN

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MARY (MIMI) TURAK AND ELIZABETH (LISSA) EDWARDS


INSPIRED INSPIRED LIFE LIFE

Caregiver’s Confidential It’s one of the most important roles we can play in another’s life. Here’s some candid, first-hand advice for new caregivers. BY ELIZABETH EDWARDS

So, yep, it’s me. Daughter-turned-caregiver for her mom. You hear stories about people like me. But until you’ve taken care of an aging parent, you really don’t get the hugeness of this responsibility. Some days I feel so blessed to get to spend time with my mom in this intimate way—as if I am the one honored to walk this wonderful woman to the door after a fabulous party ... Other days? Well, yes, I have them. Every person ages differently and has varied physical, financial and emotional needs. My mom seems pretty typical. At 87 years old she is darling, beautiful, has some short-term memory loss, macular degeneration, hearing problems and has lost a lot of strength and balance. So, the right solution for us is for her to live with me. And between my full-time career as managing editor of Traverse Magazine (and its sibling publications including this one), a small side-business and finishing raising my last child-just-turned-adult, I make sure that she is safe, warm, comfortable and has as much intellectual and social stimulus as possible. Sandwich generation you say? Make that a panini! By trial and error I’ve found some things to make my caregiving work a little easier. Here are my Top Ten Tips for Caregivers: 1. HAYSTACKS CLOTHING

A morning doesn’t go by that my mom and I don’t thank Northern Michigan’s Lizzy Lambert for founding Haystacks, her line of colorful, stylish, comfortable, easy-to-put-on (no zippers or buttons), easy-care clothes. I’ve bought Mom at least a dozen interchangeable Haystacks outfits over the past two years. She looks fabulous in them (there’s never an age a girl stops wanting to look pretty, right?) and gets compliments everywhere she goes. Bonus: Lizzy and her team hand-cut and sew the clothing here in Northern Michigan. Check out haystacks.net.

Finding a warm coat my mom could fasten herself has been another huge problem I solved recently with the purchase of a wool toggle-fastening coat. 2. GET TO KNOW YOUR LOCAL SENIOR SERVICES CENTER

These local governmental organizations go by various names but if you Google the words “senior services” and the name of your city or county you will find the one closest to you. Mine is Leelanau County Senior Services—and the folks who run it are very helpful. While my mom’s financial status disqualifies her for many of their services, there are plenty that she does qualify for, including the loan of a free wheelchair for as long as she needed it. They’ve also arranged a ride to an eye doctor appointment I couldn’t make, and put me in touch with the Michigan Bureau of Services for Blind Persons based in Lansing. The organization does home visits to assess the needs of people with sight disabilities, macular degeneration included. 3. MEALS ON WHEELS

I can’t say enough about this federally subsidized program. Being half Ukrainian, my DNA believes I should be able to cook for at least half the world. But the reality is, I am often late getting home from work and running late in the morning—and then there’s lunch. Mom, who once was a stupendous cook herself, mostly just makes toast now. After she took a bad fall last spring and I was really scrambling, my daughter talked me into signing her up for Meals on Wheels. At first Mom wasn’t sure at all about this service, and I envisioned mounds of wasted food. But who can resist a piping hot meal delivered by a small fleet of men (most of them seem to be in her case, at least) who are maybe just 10 years or so younger than one’s self ? She loves it. I love it.

Continued on page 29

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Continued from page 27 4. GATHER TIPS FROM A PROFESSIONAL CAREGIVER

8. EMERGENCY CALL/MEDICAL ALERTS

I didn’t do this but wish I had thought to hire a professional even for just for a few days to train me in the easiest way to help mom get showered and dressed. Eventually I’ve figured out where the grab bars should go, how to arrange her towels, what products work best for the best price and gizmos like that little thing that helps you put your socks on. But I would have saved time and trouble if I’d asked a pro in the first place.

The new era of these use GPS (so that your charge is covered wherever he or she goes), fall detection systems and operators that stay on the line until help arrives. Your local senior services office and online research can help determine the right features and monthly price for your loved one. Of course, the variable is whether your charge will actually wear it or remember—or is even able—to use it if they need it. If you do get one, I suggest reminding your charge about it and how to use it every morning.

5. HEARING AIDS

Say what?! Say, yes! Your loved needs to wear these if they have hearing loss. Insist on it. It might take a bit of holding your ground but after awhile the person in your care won’t want to be without them. It actually took my mom an entire year for her to realize how much better life was with her hearing aids in. The science behind the relationship to hearing loss and cognitive deterioration and emotional isolation is very real. My mom’s cost plenty, and need the cursed pea-sized batteries and flea-sized filters—that obviously she can’t do herself. But more affordable, chargeable hearing aids are finally available and it would be well worth the extra research to find the best type for your loved one. 6. ALEXA!

The hilarious video of seniors trying to use Alexa on Facebook is pretty real. But once they get the hang of how easy Alexa actually is, she is the best thing ever to happen to our aging demographic. After my mom learned that shouting at Alexa doesn’t compensate for calling her the wrong name, she got the hang of it. That opened up the whole world of audio books to her—since she can no longer read print. After she could no longer operate our microwave I purchased the new AmazonBasics Microwave that connects to Amazon’s Echo Dot. A re-heated Meal on Wheels goes a long way on a cold winter’s day. 7. PHYSICAL THERAPY

With all of the other medical appointments seniors need to get to, it’s easy to overlook physical therapy. But even a day or two a week can maintain your charge’s ability to handle steps and dress themselves. The good news is that they don’t need to fall or suffer some other accident to qualify for Medicare coverage. Doctors can prescribe physical therapy on the basis of balance and strength issues.

9. WHAT HELP CAN YOU AFFORD?

While we can’t afford a constant companion for my mom, or even someone to come in and help her get dressed, I have budgeted for house cleaning help and that feels huge. I use shipt.com so I can shop Meijer online and have the groceries delivered. I never turn down help either, even if it is someone who offers to help her in from the car for me. I appreciate every saved chore and helping hand. 10. CARING FOR THE CAREGIVER

One of the toughest things is take time for you, and trusting it is the right thing to do. Personally, watching my mother’s struggle with strength and balance I have doubled my Pilates schedule (thanks, Jen at Pure Pilates!). After a year of trying to control my blood pressure/hypertension naturally I gave in to my doctor and went on meds. Should have done it a couple of years ago! And sometimes the caregiver just needs a break. This New Year’s Eve I took a mini vacay for the night, 20 miles away. It was the first time in several years I had left my mom with anyone but my brother (who travels from the East Coast to spell me) or my aunt who is 12 years younger than my mom and lives downstate. I was confident my mom could put herself to bed and dress herself in the morning (thanks to physical therapy)—as long as everything was organized to a T. Nevertheless, she needed to be checked on. My wonderful son was home from college and he and his equally wonderful friends promised they would poke their heads into her room in the evening and morning. In the end, they wound up staying in, to be close to her. When my mom woke up in the morning she was greeted by eight sleeping 20-somethings sprawled all over the living room. She felt like a queen. Sometimes that panini brims over with unexpected blessings, doesn’t it?

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THE LIFE YOU WANT Here at Hemming& we live by three principles that make us a cut above. Every day starts with new opportunities; together we will embrace each one of them. Everyone in our offices takes great care to educate each of our clients and truly meet them where they are. It is an honor and a privilege to empower every individual and family we work with. EMBRACE

EDUCATE

EMPOWER

Every plan begins with the discovery of what has brought you here and where you want to go. We take the time to evaluate your financial picture and understand your values.

We understand the value of explaining your options in a way that is clear to you. We help you gain a better understanding of the financial concepts of investing, retirement, and wealth preservation.

Our mission is to guide you to implement smart solutions and unique opportunities.

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ADVERTORIAL


INSPIRED LIFE

DO YOU PLAN TO WORK IN RETIREMENT? The 2018 Retirement Confidence Survey found that more than two-thirds of all workers surveyed expect that paid work will play a role as a source of retirement income. If you believe that working for pay will supplement at least some of your retirement income, consider the following facts.

MORE PEOPLE ARE WORKING BEYOND AGE 65 According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 37% of men and 28% of women between the ages of 65 and 69 were still in the workforce in 2017. In addition, 17% of men and 10% of women age 70 and older were still working.

SOCIAL SECURITY IMPOSES AN "EARNINGS LIMIT" If you plan to work and claim Social Security benefits before reaching your full retirement age (66 to 67, depending on year and month of birth), you will be subject to an earnings limit ($17,640 in 2019). Above that limit, $1 will be withheld from your benefit for every $2 earned. In the year you reach full retirement age, you will lose $1 for every $3 earned above a higher limit ($46,920 in 2019). Once you reach full retirement age, there is no reduction in benefits.

INCOME FOR OLDER WORKERS IS ON THE RISE According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the average earnings for workers age 65 and older increased by 47.6% between 2000 and 2015, a far greater increase than that of any other age group.

Let's continue the conversation.

600 E. Front St. Traverse City, MI 49686 231.922.2900 | info@hemmingwm.com

DAWN HEMMING, MBA & AUTUMN C. SOLTYSIAK, CFP®

Securities and advisory services offered through SagePoint Financial Inc., member FINRA / SIPC. Insurance services offered through Hemming& which is not affiliated with SagePoint Financial.

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Korner Gem


INSPIRED LIFE

HOW TO MAKE WALKING A HABIT Walking is a fantastic way to stay fit, healthy and active. But staying accountable to a constantly moving lifestyle can be tricky. Here are 10 tips to help make walking a habit, rain or shine. BY COURTNEY JEROME

1. GET INVOLVED IN A COMMUNITY GROUP “There is always strength in numbers and having your friends or the community group hold you accountable will keep pushing you,” says Stephanie Carpenter, Wellness Director at Grand Traverse Bay YMCA. 2. TACKLE YOUR VISTA-AND-VIEWS BUCKET LIST You’ve seen pictures of Northern Michigan sights and have been hoping to see them in person. And most are probably accessible only via trail. Jot down these picture-perfect places, grab a friend, and start crossing them off the list. 3. ADOPT A FOUR-LEGGED FRIEND Join your pooch on daily walks outdoors.

5. GET HOOKED ON A NEW PODCAST

9. NETWORK WHILE MOVING

You’d be surprised how a couple of earbuds and an inspiring audio series can take you to a whole new world. Who knows, the topics may inspire you to start your own fitness podcast, or make you forget you’re even exercising.

Skip having business over coffee, and invite your colleagues to accompany you on a walk instead. Since exercise increases your heart rate, which pumps more oxygen to the brain, you’re more likely to have good ideas and clear vision. “Exercise will also release many hormones, all of which help provide nourishment to the brain cells,” Carpenter says.

6. REGISTER FOR A HEALTHY EVENT AND AREA 3K OR 5K RACE AND TRAIN WITH A BUDDY “Meeting others who have the same passion as you will motivate you to keep going or pushing yourself harder,” Stephanie Carpenter says. 7. SPICE UP YOUR SHOES Neon laces. Motivational buttons. Or a new pair of kicks. Whatever it takes to put a smile on your face while strolling—do it!

10. LEARN TO RACE WALK Ready to take walking to the next level? The Traverse City Track Club (+tctrackclub.com+) hosts race walking clinics to fulfill your competitive urges! All levels of walkers are welcome.

PHOTO BY DAVE WEIDNER

4. TRACK YOUR PROGRESS Using a pedometer or Fitbit is a great way to set goals, track your steps, and keep yourself accountable. Bonus: Reward yourself when you accomplish your target!

8. DOWNLOAD AN APP Several applications for your smartphone are available to help you make walking a habit: with built-in GPS to review your route, social networking sites to share your successes, and encouraging audio pep talks.

Shape Up North is a community collaboration dedicated to helping Northern Michigan residents benefit from healthy eating habits and an active lifestyle. shapeupnorth.com

MyNorth INSPIRED LIFE | SPRING 2019

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JILL AND DENNIS PROUT WITH THEIR GRANDCHILDREN

INVEST FOR THE KIDS...AND THEIR KIDS Sit down with Dennis Prout of Traverse City’s Prout Financial Design to find out how to pass along funds—and financial wisdom—to the next generation. BY SHEA PETAJA

How many grandkids do you have? Four. What do they call you? Papa. Are the rumors true? Is grandparenting really better than parenting? It’s categorically insane because we don’t have the responsibility of parenting and this gives both of us more freedom to express ourselves. Also, we don’t have to discipline them which frees up the relationship. What did you teach your own children about money? Not nearly enough. I tried to teach them the importance of earning a dollar and saving. When they got older it was about mutual funds and saving for their own educational uses. Lindsay, my daughter, called it the “Washington thing” referring to the name of a mutual fund (ha!). Again, we tried. Now, we have more influence because they are in their working years and our advice means more. What has changed in the financial industry since you started saving for your own kids? It used to be about the educational IRA and UGMA (Uniform Gift to Minors Act) accounts but now it’s about the 529 Plans and the Roth IRA. The Roth IRA has been a huge boon for 34

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saving for grandkids because it’s not counted against them in the FASFA. Even the 529 Plan has loosened up to be more inclusive of different learning opportunities (not just college). Are there new strategies parents and grandparents should think about? Several, but here are a few … • You can convert your IRA to a Roth IRA (which grows tax free) so that they can use it for college funding. You will be able to draw money out in 18 years to help that grandchild. At the same time, you can put limitations on that through a trust such as, “They must maintain a B average to receive funds.” • If a child has earned income, you can set up a Roth IRA in their name. • Within certain limitations, a grandparent could liquidate a savings bond, use the proceeds for higher education and not pay any tax on the gain. Is it wise to leave a grandchild as a beneficiary? My first question would be, “How old are they?” and second, “Are they good with money?” It also depends on what kind of account. You must determine if they have full access or if the court will have to oversee transactions. If the account is sizeable then you’ll want to consider a trust to control the disbursement. Consider that most beneficiary IRA’s are spent in a year. Think in terms of family relationships and how

to foster family unity. Relationships are more important than money and I think we’ve all witnessed that. Besides money, what values do you plan to pass on to your grandkids? I want them to understand the importance of faith and how to gift money. For example, we have already chosen nonprofits as contingent beneficiaries after we pass away. We are leading by example. Last words? The biggest thing any grandparent can do is to nurture their grandchild with love and acceptance. The dream for me is to encourage them in their talents. Also, giving to their parents both emotionally and financially, that’s important to us.

Dennis Prout is a Certified Financial Planner® and Master Elite Advisor  with Ed Slott’s IRA Advisor Group. He has been leading the retirement planning conversation for over 25 years in Northern Michigan. He is also the host of NEW Retirement Radio on NewsTalk 580 am.  Investment Advisory Services offered through Capital Asset Advisory Services, LLC, a Registered Investment Advisor. Capital Asset Advisory Services, LLC, does not offer tax or legal advice.


INSPIRED LIFE

5 EASY TO-DOS TO CHECK OFF YOUR RETIREMENT PLAN LIST Everyone loves a simple checklist to feel like they’ve accomplished something meaningful! Here is an easy-to-follow checklist for you on your way toward a sustainable retirement. BY JASON P. TANK, CFA

JUST DO IT; COMMIT TO AT LEAST A 10% SAVINGS RATE. If you are enrolled in a company-sponsored retirement plan, like a 401(k), be sure to voluntarily save at least as much as your employer has agreed to match. That’s just free money. Counting any matching funds, work to set aside enough to at least squirrel away 10% to 15% of your income. While you might need to tweak this, based on your particular needs and goals, a minimum target of 10% is a nice, round figure. The longer you wait, the more sacrifice that’ll be required later. It’s really as simple as that. LIKE YOU, YOUR PORTFOLIO SHOULD PROBABLY LOOK ITS AGE. The highest level review you can do focuses on what’s known as your asset allocation. Studies have shown that about 90% of your portfolio risk is defined simply by your chosen asset allocation. Naturally, the proper mix of stocks and bonds depends directly on how much time you have left until retirement. Setting a glidepath to an increasingly balanced portfolio is just plain prudent. And, no glidepath can be created, let alone followed, if you don’t know where you are today. Here’s an overly simplistic rule-of-thumb for you. Your portfolio’s allocation to stocks should be no higher than your current age subtracted from 100. It’s really not a silly place for you to start the conversation. PAYING HIGH INVESTMENT COSTS IS LIKE TRYING TO WALK THE WRONG WAY ON THE ESCALATOR. Outside of your asset allocation, the second most important thing to consider are your investment costs. The sad fact is most investors have little idea how much their chosen investments and investment advice costs. Here’s another rule of thumb. Make sure the average “mutual fund expense ratio” in your portfolio is no more than 0.5% per year. And, if you

enlist an advisor, don’t pay them much more than 1% per year. Clearly, a combined total investment cost of 1.5% per year is a lot. Now, I’ve seen worse, so I’ve created an easy box for you to check off! (Tip: You can get sound investments and strong advice for lower.) IMAGINE AND RE-IMAGINE YOUR FUTURE RETIREMENT. When it comes to hitting your retirement goal, you really need to get a rough handle on how much your retirement lifestyle will actually cost. Think of this as figuring out your “cash flow hurdle.” Let’s be honest, nobody likes the word, budget! Within your rough guess, be sure to keep in mind that your mortgage, other debt costs and all those expenses for the kids that currently occupy a portion of your life costs will likely disappear in retirement. THE BEST LAID PLANS OFTEN GO AWRY. It’s always important to recognize that things are bound to change. It’s a rarity that a plan will unfold as planned. For this reason, it is my firm belief that no retirement plan should ever be viewed as chiseled in stone. It’s much more like you’re thoughtfully doodling on a whiteboard. Embrace flexibility by setting your goal and don’t be afraid to erase as needed.

Jason P. Tank, CFA is the owner of Front Street Wealth Management, a purely fee-only advisory firm in Traverse City, and the founder of the Money Series, a program committed to providing open-access to financial education, for all. Find him at Jason@FrontStreet.com, 231-947-3775 and www.FrontStreet.com Front Street Wealth Management is the independent, fee-only, fully-discretionary wealth advisory firm for individuals, families and trusts who value proactive management of their investments and a deeper confidence in their wealth.

MyNorth INSPIRED LIFE | SPRING 2019

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SPRING | 2019

LIVING WELL AFTER 55 IN NORTHERN MICHIGAN

ACTIVE BRACE AND LIMB Cadillac: 231-775-3577 | Petoskey: 231-487-0998 Traverse City: 231-932-8702 activebraceandlimb.com | See our ad on page 16

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CULVER MEADOWS Adult Foster Care 231-943-9421 Senior Living 231-943-9430 culvermeadows.com | See our ad on page 24

FYZICAL THERAPY & BALANCE CENTERS 4000 Eastern Sky Dr. Ste. 6 | Traverse City, MI 49684 231-932-9014 | Fyzical.com/TC See our ad on page 16

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GRAND TRAVERSE PAVILIONS 1000 Pavilions Circle | Traverse City, MI 49684 231-932-3000 | gtpavilions.org See our ad on page 16

MONARCH HOME HEALTH SERVICES 821 S Elmwood Avenue, Suite D l Traverse City, MI 49684 231-932-0708 l monarchhomehealth.com See our ad on page 20

REYNOLDS JONKHOFF FUNERAL HOME 305 Sixth Street | Traverse City, MI 49684 231-947-6347 | reynolds-jonkhoff.com See our ad on page 24

SWENSEN MEMORIALS 806 Hastings Street | Traverse City, MI 49686 231-943-8777 | 888-470-6591 | swensenmemorials.com See our ad on page 20

TRAVERSE VISION

A LZH EIMER S/ D EMEN T IA C A R E • BAT H IN G C A RE MEA L PR EP • SH O PPIN G • 2 4 H R C O V ER A GE • C O M PAN I O N C A R E • MED IC AT IO N MA N A GEMEN T • N UR SIN G SERV I CE S I N T H E C O MFO R T O F Y O UR O W N H O ME

336 W. Front St. l Traverse City, MI 49684 231-941-5440 l traversevision.com See our ad on page 24

Harbor Care Associates is a full service home health care agency offering a complete network of home care & related services to meet a variety of needs.

VILLA AT TRAVERSE POINT

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Now that you’re financially secure, your worries are over. If only. But life’s curve balls don’t give a hoot about net worth. That’s why clients of Greenleaf Trust (with over $12 billion in assets under advisement) rely on us for mindful management of wealth that holistically integrates investment performance with tax planning, trusts, risk management, cash flow, retirement, estate planning, charitable giving, assistance to loved ones, and so on. The long-proven success of this approach has little to do with things beyond one’s control, and everything to do with everything else. Peace of mind is closer than you think. Call us.

Client relationships begin at $2 million.

Traverse City 231.778.0050 | Bay Harbor 231.439.5016 | greenleaftrust.com


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MyNorth Inspired Life Spring 2019  

Live Your Best Life Up North! / Walk your way to health / Heal with music / Invest for the kids... & their kids / Start the best book club e...

MyNorth Inspired Life Spring 2019  

Live Your Best Life Up North! / Walk your way to health / Heal with music / Invest for the kids... & their kids / Start the best book club e...

Profile for mynorth