For 50+ living
Herbert Chilstrom’s new book weaves family memories through events surrounding the Great Depression
How history shaped a local family
BBB expert tells seniors how to protect their ID
New classes about researching family history begin soon
Get tips for keeping financial resolutions
CALENDAR OF EVENTS JANUARY
New Year’s open house Cokato Museum and Historical Society’s 17th annual New Year’s open house will be from 1 to 4 p.m. Jan. 8 in the centennial room at the library/museum building, use the library entrance. Usher in the New Year with a demonstration of the Finnish custom of melting tin.
FEBRUARY ‘Voice of the Prairie’ Dassel-Cokato Community Theater in February will present “The Voice of the Prairie,” produced by DasselCokato Community Education. More information to come.
MARCH ‘Singing for the Cows’ “Singing for the Cows: Homesteading a Dream,” is a dynamic one-woman show that takes the stage at 7 p.m. March 11 at Dassel History Center. The show is a reflec-
art scene at Hutchinson Center for the Arts. For information, call 320587-7278 or go online to www.HutchinsonArts.org.
tive musical scrapbook with various characters that are witty and poignant. Tickets are $10; seating is general admission.
McLeod County Historical Museum
GALLERIES & MUSEUMS
380 School Road NW, Hutchinson Learn about local history through the museum’s exhibits, research library, monthly programs and special events. For information, call 320587-2109.
Cokato Museum and Akerlund Studio 175 Fourth St.W., Cokato Learn about the history of Cokato and the surrounding townships in southwestern Wright County. For information, call 320-286-2427.
Meeker County Historical Society Museum, GAR Hall
Dassel History Center and Ergot Museum
380 Marshall Ave. N., Litchfield The G.A.R. Hall was the first Grand Army of the Republic meeting hall built in Minnesota. The museum was added to the rear of the historic hall in 1960. For information, call 320-693-8911.
901 First St. N., Dassel The history center and museum are housed in the Universal Laboratories building, which is on the National Register of Historic Places. For information, call 320-275-3077.
Hutchinson Center for the Arts 15 Franklin St. SW., Hutchinson Learn about the Hutchinson-area
To submit an event to be included in this free listing, email information to Juliana Thill at email@example.com or call 320-593-4808.
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ZEST | JANUARY 2017
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Zest For 50+ living
JANUARY 2017 Vol. 8 No. 11
Litchfield Independent Review P.O. Box 307, Litchfield, MN 55355 320-693-3266 Hutchinson Leader 170 Shady Ridge Road NW, Suite 100 Hutchinson, MN 55350 320-587-5000
Brent Schacherer • 320-234-4143 firstname.lastname@example.org
In the news: The second part of a three-part ‘Family 5 History Research Series’ of classes begins in February
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Learn how to protect yourself from scammers
The Rev. Herbert Chilstrom writes a new book about growing up during the Great Depression
In the news: It’s not too late to protect yourself from the flu
12 Money matters: Keep your financial New Year’s resolutions 13 Medicare: Health care proxy appoints someone to make health care decisions for you
14 Recipes: Caprese Salad Topped Smoked Sausage Sandwiches, Almond Snack Mix, Pumpkin Butterscotch Bread Pudding, Roasted Sonoma Chicken with Wild Rice and Carrot Butter
JANUARY 2017 | ZEST
A WARM WELCOME
appy New Year! Welcome to 2017. Thank you for joining us for another year as we continue to share stories and information for and about people 50 and older. Our cover story this month is about the Rev. Herbert Chilstrom, a Litchfield native, who served as bishop of the ELCA for eight years in the late 1980s and early 1990s. He’s retired now and living in Arizona, but he still returns to Minnesota and South Dakota to go fishing. His roots run deep, though, through the Litchfield area. He has shared some personal stories in the past with books he has written. However, in his latest book, he highlights events surrounding the Great Depression and tells about some of the hard times his family of 10 experienced during that difficult time in American history. For people too young to have lived through the Depression, it offers readers a firsthand look at how families fell on hard times, the sadness and heartbreak they experienced, and how they survived. The idea to write this book came as he was typing the entries his mother had written in her diary decades ago. His book is part history lesson, part memoir and, overall, an easy read. This month, we’ve also included information about the second part of a three-part series of classes that involve teaching people how to research their family history. The
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classes are offered in four communities throughout McLeod County. Also in the county, the Lutheran Social Services’ Caregiver Support Program is in need of volunteers to provide assistance. The work involves offering companionship, not medical care. We also have a story with some tips about protecting yourself and your money when it comes to scamJuliana Thill mers. A Better Business Bureau Editor expert spoke at the McLeod County Senior Expo and offered numerous helpful tips that we wanted to share with readers. When it comes to dealing with these con artists and scammers, remember, you don’t have to be Minnesota Nice. Hang up the phone on them, delete the email, close the door on solicitors. It’s not being rude, you’re protecting yourself. In the magazine, you’ll also find some advice on keeping your financial New Year’s resolutions or making some and sticking to them when it comes to managing your personal finances. Finally, don’t forget that our February Zest magazine will be our annual Silver Pages resource guide, full of useful information that you’ll want to keep on hand all year.
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ZEST | JANUARY 2017
Caregiver Support Program seeks volunteers in McLeod County Lutheran Social Services seeks volunteers for its Caregiver Support Program in McLeod County. LSS is enrolling volunteers, who: • Assist families who care for someone at home. • Provide reassurance and companionship to care receivers so family caregivers can take a break. • Serve veterans. Qualified volunteers will participate in a 20hour orientation session and attend monthly training. Volunteers work 10 to 12 hours a week; and schedules are flexible. Volunteers do not provide medical or personal care. Volunteers will receive a monthly stipend of $200 and qualify for a $1,500 education grant for college expenses. For more information and qualifications about becoming a volunteer with the Caregiver Support Program in McLeod County, contact Sarah Doering, LSS Caregiver Support and Respite coordinator, at 320-221-4513 or email her email@example.com.
IN THE NEWS
Classes offer help with researching family history
cLeod County Historical Museum has teamed up with Pioneerland Library System to provide a series of genealogy classes titled the “Family History Research
Series.” The series of classes are divided into beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. Beginner classes, which took place in the fall, walked people through how to begin a family history search, do family interviews and what local resources are available offline. Intermediate classes will take place in February and March, and advanced classes begin in September 2017. People can sign up for one or all the classes in the series. All programs are free. Pre-registration is preferred for planning purposes. Intermediate family history research classes are offered in several communities: ◆ Brownton — 7 p.m. Mondays, Feb. 6, 13, 27 at Brownton Public Library, 335 Third St. S. Call 320-328-5900 to RSVP. ◆ Hutchinson — 7 p.m. Thursdays, Feb. 2, 9, 16 at McLeod County Historical Museum, 380 School Road NW, Hutchinson. Call 320-587-2368 to RSVP. ◆ Winsted — 7 p.m. Mondays, March 6, 13, 20 at Winsted Arts Center, 141 Main Ave. W. Call 320-485-3909 to RSVP. ◆ Glencoe — 7 p.m. Thursdays, March 2, 9, 16, at Glencoe Public Library, 1107 11th St. E. Call 320-864-3919 to RSVP.
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JANUARY 2017 | ZEST
BBB advises seniors on how they can avoid being scammed Seniors must keep personal information from con artists By Juliana Thill EDITOR
t’s no secret that seniors are a target for scammers, and as a result, they need to be vigilant in protecting their personal information. “Like most of us growing up, we took people at their word, we respected authority and we trusted people. That has put a circle target on the back of seniors,” said Gary Johnson, senior program manager for the Better Business Bureau. “Another aspect where con artists are after us is, people over 60 control about 60 percent of the wealth and assets in the country. And, there are a lot of seniors who are on fixed income, where somebody offering an opportunity to add a little more gold to their golden years, they’re willing to listen,” he said. As a result of scammers taking advantage of senior citizens, Johnson travels throughout Minnesota and North Dakota to talk to seniors, listen to their concerns, and educate them on how to “spot, stop, and report fraud.” Johnson gave a presentation, “Be Wise, Be Informed, Be Empowered,” at the McLeod County Senior Expo in September. He talked to his standingroom only crowd about scam alerts, BBB business reviews, and how to recognize red flags and become a safer citizen in today’s marketplace. The mission of the Better Business Bureau is to advance marketplace trust. In its quest to fulfill this mission, the BBB reaches out to demographics that are targeted by scammers, like seniors, to provide information to them and empower them to fight fraud. He encouraged sharing the information he talked about with others to help prevent fraud. “The telephone is where these con artists have the most impact with sen-
ZEST | JANUARY 2017
PHOTO BY JULIANA THILL
Gary Johnson, senior program manager for the Better Business Bureau, advises seniors to be cautious to prevent being scammed. iors. We grew up Minnesota Nice, we answered the phone, we treat people with respect, and that’s what these con artists count on,” he said. Sometimes scammers can get a local police or sheriff’s department phone number to appear or even the own person’s name and number to appear. Scammers use a spoofing card, new technology to alter a phone number and even a voice so a man can sound like a senior’s granddaughter. These scammers get away with fraud every year, Johnson said, “and a lot of people are ashamed they fell for these things.” When it comes to charities, people often receive high-pressure, emotional calls from a charity that sound similar to a well-known charity. “Have a speech in your back pocket, that says, ‘our giving is done for this year. Send me your information; I’ll consider you for next year.’ Then hang up the phone. If they have your phone number, they have your address because it’s all public information, and 99.9 percent of the time you’ll never receive anything,” he said. These scammers watch the news and trends and prey on emotions, “so just be cautious,” Johnson said.
Top scams targeting seniors The following are popular scams and schemes that seniors should be aware of: ◆ Fake IRS calls — Scammers claim to be with the IRS and demand immediate payment. If you refuse, they threaten you with arrest. Hang up and call your telephone provider. ◆ Lottery and sweepstakes — You receive a check and letter announcing you have won a large sum of money and must pay a fee to collect the prize. Don’t cash the check and never pay fees to collect a prize. ◆ Grandparent scam — You receive a call from someone pretending to be your grandchild. The caller claims to be in trouble and asks you to secretly wire money, to post bail, or to pay for damages but not to tell Mom or Dad. Don’t wire money. Hang up and call your relatives to ensure your grandchild is safe. ◆ Tech support — Someone claiming to be a computer technician contacts you via phone or email claiming there are problems with your computer. Do not let them access your computer. They might install malware, which allows them access to everything on your computer. They might shut down your computer and charge you to restart it. ◆ Home repair or inspection fraud — A person comes to your door and claims to be an expert who can do repairs at a low price. Trust your instincts. If the “expert” uses high pressure sales tactics or you feel intimated, turn them away. Never pay the full cost of a job up front. Ask for IDs, and check out the company with the BBB before work starts. ◆ Imposter schemes — You receive calls or emails from individuals claiming to be with Medicare, a credit card company or a bank. These communications ask you to verify your personal information. These are usually fraudulent. Hang up or delete the email. If you’re concerned, call your bank or credit card company using the phone number on your statement or on the back of your credit card. Source: BBB Institute for Marketplace Ethics
Fight the flu, pneumonia by getting vaccinated
hile current U.S. flu activity is low overall, localized influenza outbreaks have been reported and activity is expected to increase during winter. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends a yearly flu vaccine for everyone 6 months and older. For best protection, flu vaccine usually should be given in early fall before flu season starts. But people can get a flu shot anytime during flu season, which typically is October through April. It takes about two weeks after vaccination for protection to set in. Flu vaccination can reduce flu illnesses and prevent flu-related hospitalizations. Flu vaccines have been updated for the 2016-2017 season. For the 2016-17 season, the CDC recommends use of the flu shot and the recombinant influenza vaccine. The nasal spray flu vaccine should not be used during 2016-17.
It has been recognized for many years that people 65 years and older are at greater risk of serious complications from the flu compared with young, healthy adults because human immune defenses become weaker with age. The CDC recommends actions to take this flu season: 1. Get a flu shot. 2. Practice good health habits, including covering coughs, washing hands often, and avoiding people who are sick. 3. Seek medical advice quickly if you develop flu symptoms to see whether you might need medical evaluation or treatment with antiviral drugs. Flu symptoms include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue. Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea. People may be infected with the flu and have respiratory symptoms without a fever.
IN THE NEWS
People can get a flu shot anytime during flu season, which typically runs from October through April.
4. Get pneumococcal vaccines. People 65 years and older should be up to date with pneumococcal vaccination to protect against pneumococcal disease, such as pneumonia, meningitis, and bloodstream infections. Talk to your doctor to find out which pneumococcal vaccines are recommended for you.
JANUARY 2017 | ZEST
At left, the Rev. Herbert Chilstrom. Below, the Chilstrom family in 1944 includes: front row,Wally, Martha, Janet and Ruth; and back row, Herbert, Lorraine,Adeline,Winnifred,Virginia and David. SUBMITTED PHOTOS
In his new book, ‘I almost Missed the Great Depression,’ Herbert Chilstrom weaves family memories into larger, historical events of the 1930s
A personal T look at the Great Depression
he entries Ruth Chilstrom penned in her diary were often short, yet poignant. “W. no work,” meaning her husband, Wally, had not found work in 1936. “W. no work. Snow. Roads closed.” The entries expressed the frustration, struggles and hardship the family endured in By Juliana Thill the 1930s during the Great EDITOR Depression. Worried his mother’s diary might one day be thrown away, the Rev. Herbert Chilstrom, a retired Lutheran bishop and native of Litchfield, sought to preserve his mother’s words by typing each entry into his computer. “My mother kept a simple diary. It was, who came to visit, how much they got for a dozen eggs, how much a loaf of bread cost,” he said. “I recorded every date. One day, she bought a pair of shoes for my brother and me
ZEST | JANUARY 2017
and indicated it cost $1.98. Then something would leap off the page, and when I put it into context of what I knew and heard from my sisters, the struggle and the Great Depression really came home to me.” When Chilstrom read one of his mother’s diary entries, he could feel the weight on her shoulders. At that time, his parents had lost their farm. With no home, his father had taken three of Chilstrom’s sisters to live with his father’s mother. And, Chilstrom and his brother and one sister went with their mother to live with her parents. With a family separated by poverty and living in cramped quarters with relatives through the brutal winter of 1935-36, Ruth had enough. “Must find place,” she wrote April 5, 1936. “Those three words — I could feel the desperation coming off the page of that diary, and that impelled me to want to write more about what the family was going through,” Chilstrom said. “Then, I thought, ‘this needs to be woven into the larger context of what was happening in the country.’”
Family memories in context From his home in Green Valley, Arizona, Chilstrom, has written his eighth book, “I Almost Missed the Great Depression,” in which he recalls historical moments and how they affected his family of 10 living in Litchfield. In the summer of 1930, Ruth and Wally worked side by side in the hay field. Ruth slipped and fell, precipitating a miscarriage, Chilstrom writes in his book. “Had this not happened, I would never have been conceived the following January 1931. Life hangs by a very thin thread. So, there’s my story line: I almost missed the Great Depression,” Chilstrom recalls in the third chapter of his book. Chilstrom was born into a poor Swedish family living on a rented Litchfield farm, two years after the start of the Great Depression. His father, being a staunch Republican, named his first son — and fifth child — after the then-president of the United States, Herbert Hoover. “From the turn of the 19th century to the 20th century, almost all farmers were Republican because the govern-
The Chilstrom family moved into a home on Ramsey Avenue North and Seventh Street in Litchfield, near the wooded edge of town, in October 1936. The photo shows the house and garden the family later grew. SUBMITTED PHOTO
ment was good to farmers. In the Beckville community, you would have had a hard time finding many people who were Democrats. So, even though Hoover was extremely unpopular, my father was so Republican, it was no problem to hang this moniker around his son’s neck,” Chilstrom said with a laugh. “My mother leaned pretty much the other way. So, they had some pretty strong disagreements over the dinner table, over whether Roosevelt was doing the right thing. My mother saw there were some benefits from it (the New Deal), but my father didn’t see it,” he said, recalling how after supper he would linger around the table to listen to his parents’ political discussions. In writing the book, Chilstrom relied on his mother’s diary, his memories, the recollections of his sisters who are still living, as well as historic books. During the Depression, banks failed, unemployment rose, and shanty towns, sprang up across America, including in Litchfield, Chilstrom said. “On the southwest edge of Litchfield, down Miller Avenue and to the west, that what’s we called ‘shanty town,’” he said, adding that most of those homes are gone now. “When people lost their home or farm, they would scramble for building materials, and the houses were tiny.” The struggles his family faced during the Great Depression are at the heart of his latest book. “I hadn’t even thought about writing a book like this until I started typing day by day, the pages of her diary. I got started about a year and a half ago,
tucking it into other things I was doing. Once I got the inspiration of writing a book, it began to come together rather rapidly.” However, at 85, Chilstrom has lost most of his sight, so researching historical facts was difficult. “I can’t read books, so I listen to books on tape. I scoured books for the blind and listened to them. From them, I was able to thread together what was going on (during the Great Depression),” he said. Chilstrom’s parents, Ruth Lindell and Walfred Chilstrom, were married May 10, 1922 at Beckville Lutheran Church in rural Litchfield. The Roaring ’20s had been good to the young family. And then Black Tuesday hit. “The earth trembled as the nation plunged into a deep economic crisis to be forever known as the Great Depression,” Chilstrom says in the book. “It became the yardstick by which every economic downturn since then would be measured.”
A growing family At the time, the Chilstroms had four daughters, Adeline, Lorraine, Winnifred and Virginia, before Herbert was born. Two years later, another boy, David, was born. As a result of complications at birth, David sustained brain damage and grew up developmentally challenged. Conditions on the farm turned dismal, worsening during the next two years for the Chilstrom family. Grain prices fell, dry weather limited the ability to grow crops, and during a rare
JANUARY 2017 | ZEST
thunderstorm, the family’s two work horses used to till the soil, sought shelter under a tree. The tree was struck by lightening, and the horses died instantly. With no insurance, it was another blow to the struggling farm family. “By 1935, the family was on life support,” he says in the book. The Chilstroms could no longer afford to live on their rented farm. The only option was to split up their family. On March 16, 1935, the family left their farm and headed in different directions — Ruth took Adeline, David and Herbert and moved in with her parents and their 20-year-old son on a farm one mile south. Wally took the three other girls, Lorraine, Winnie and Virginia, and moved to his widowed mother and single brother’s farm house one mile east. Ruth, who was six months pregnant, gave birth to their seventh child, Martha, in June.
Time for prayer Ruth’s parents, Arvid and Hedda Lindell, had emigrated from Sweden in the spring of 1901. Arvid worked for farmers in the Litchfield area until he could rent his own farm land. Hedda, was a devout Christian and grew up attending church with her family in Sweden. Hedda’s father, Chilstrom’s great-grandfather, was a well-known lay leader in the evangelical community in southern Sweden. Chilstrom remembers his grandmother reading from her Swedish Bible and “Psalm Bok” after the evening meal while living with his grandparents. Even at 4 years old, Chilstrom knew that when his grandmother reached for her Bible, it was time for stillness and prayer. “We would gather around the table for Bible reading, and I wouldn’t understand what she was reading, it was in Swedish. But it was that moment of silence. I was such a rambunctious kid, but I knew it was time to stop and think about more important things. That memory surely is powerful in my recollection,” he said. That winter brought record-setting blizzards and frigid temperatures. And Ruth’s diary reflects, in brief, the hardship and frustration at the time.
ZEST | JANUARY 2017
‘I Almost Missed the Great Depression’ Written by: Herbert W. Chilstrom About: Chilstrom probes the difficult years of the 1930s. He writes about Presidents Hoover and Roosevelt, the cause and effects of the 1929 Crash, the first 100 days, the New Deal, the Works Progress Administration and more. He weaves into that larger historic fabric, the story of his own family, including his parents and seven siblings, and from living on the farm, to moving to the city of Litchfield. To order: The 67-page coffee table-sized book can be purchased online at www.bookmark.gustavus.edu. Click on “shop,” then click “general book and media,” then click “Chilstrom books.” Or, send a check for $19.95 to Chilstrom Books, 635 Park Centre Ave. S., #2121, Green Valley,AZ 85614-6280. Or stop at the Litchfield Independent Review, Litchfield Public Library or Meeker County Historical Society or an order form.The book also is available to check out at the Litchfield Public Library. Income from the sale of the book goes to the David E. Chilstrom Student Scholarship Fund at Luther Seminary, St. Paul, Minnesota.
Feb. 3: W. — no work. Feb. 4: Blocked roads and cold. W. no work. Feb. 5: 28 below zero. W. no work. Feb. 6: Very cold and snow. W. no work. Feb. 7: No work. 30 below zero. Feb. 8: W. no work. 22 b-zero. Snow and roads closed. Feb. 9: W. no work. Feb. 10: W. no work. Feb. 11: W. no work. 20 b-zero. Feb. 12: W. at work opening roads. Feb. 15: W. no work. Feb. 18: W. no work. Feb. 19: W. no work. Feb. 20: W. worked all day. Feb. 21: W. no work. Feb. 22: W. no work. Feb. 24: W. worked all day. Feb. 25: W. worked all day — shoveled drifts 8-10 ft high. Feb. 27: W. no work. Feb. 29: No work. Snow storm. March 1: Blocked roads. March 2: W. worked. The need for the Chilstrom family to have their own home again became more pressing that summer when Ruth’s parents decided to retire from farming and leave the farm.
Sense of community Wally began working with the Works Progress Administration and stayed with it through much of the late1930s. The WPA laid new sidewalk in Litchfield, created a park and swimming beach, transformed a swampy area into a golf course near the shore of Lake Ripley, upgraded a sanitation system, extended water and sewer lines, and planted hundreds of trees. So, even though he disliked the President Roosevelt’s Democratic policies, Wally had a steady job. “Out of the Depression came a sense that we are one community and you pull together. Roosevelt, despite his childhood and wealth, had a compassion for helping poor people and those disadvantaged. And it’s people like that who help us understand — you either pull together or sink together,” Chilstrom said. After searching for and visiting potential rental properties with no luck, the Chilstrom family found a small home on Ramsey Avenue North and Seventh Street, near the wooded edge of town, in October 1936.
After a year and a half of living apart, the Chilstrom family — Wally, Ruth and their seven children —were back to living under one roof, in a twobedroom house. Times were still hard, money was scarce, and the family relied on their large garden, part-time jobs that the older children were able to get, and the generosity of others to get by.
A book with purpose Chilstrom graduated from Litchfield High School and then went on to college and then the seminary. He was elected bishop of the Minnesota Synod of Lutheran Church in America in 1976. Later, he was a member of the inner circle who helped bring three branches of the Lutheran Church together to form the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. He became the first presiding bishop of the ELCA in 1987, and led the church for eight years, until 1995. He retired 20 years ago and he and his wife, Corinne, also a retired pastor, began writing books.
Throughout the book, Chilstrom said, “it becomes apparent that my father was a very kind and loving and tender person. His children would stand up to say we couldn’t ask for a better father. Our mother, with organizational skills and personal energy, she was the anchor that really kept the family going. She was very strong physically and bright mentally, and could converse in English and Swedish,” Chilstrom said. She managed the finances, the garden, and the children, while also bearing children and suffering miscarriages. To show his devotion to his mother, Chilstrom dedicated his book to her. In the forward of his book, Chilstrom said in writing the book, his hope is three-fold: ◆ That older readers who experienced all or part of the Great Depression will be motivated to write and tell their stories. “Even if it’s a page or two, they owe it to their descendant to share that part of their life,” he said.
We’re here for one reason.
◆ That descendants of families who lived through the Great Depression will discover reasons to give thanks for their parents, grandparents and others who survived and conquered those stressful years. ◆ That everyone gain a new appreciation for public leaders at the local, state and national level who acted unselfishly and responsibly to bring hope and resilience to the country. “My primary hope in writing the book was to share stories with my family. You never know which descendant will find it interesting because this is ancient history to them. Maybe others will say, ‘I love history, and I love to know how my family fits into history,’” Chilstrom said. “On a broader scale, I hope it helps people be informed about what happened in history. Most people have heard about the Great Depression second-hand. A few people 80 and above have tasted a little of the Depression. I want to help people understand how difficult that era was in American history.” ■
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JANUARY 2017 | ZEST
Keep your New Year’s financial resolutions Get organized so you can manage the money you have, save more and spend less
hether you’re talking about diet, exercise or money, keeping New Year’s resolutions is challenging. A University of Scranton researcher noted that “weight loss” is the current reigning resolution, followed by “improve finances” at No. 2. And while the study showed that roughly 40-46 percent were successful in their specific goal at the six-month mark, more than half gave up. Your personal finances need more dedication than that. If you want to add some fairly easy money resolutions that can help your finances overall, consider the following: ◆ Make your first budget or do a better job of reviewing the one you have. A 2013 Gallup survey reported that only one-third of Americans actually prepare a detailed household budget. Make your first resolution to create or review your household budget (www.practicalmoneyskills.com/budgeting) so you know where your finances stand at all times. Budgeting involves day-to-day tracking of finances, but having a quick way to determine your net worth (www.practicalmoney skills.com/worth) — your assets minus your liabilities — offers the biggest picture of how you’re doing and what next steps you might take to improve your circumstances. Make this calculation an annual kickoff to the New Year. ◆ Having an emergency fund means you’re always ready for the unexpected. The average emergency fund generally covers three-tosix months of daily expenses — yours could be more or less. Keep in mind that the primary purpose of an emergency fund is to keep you away from savings when unexpected expenses happen.
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Nathaniel Sillin Director of Visa’s financial education program
◆ Get organized. Depending on your comfort level with all things digital, virtually every aspect of your financial life can be managed online or with computer-based software. From setting up a basic paper or online calendar to track pay dates, bill due dates and deposit dates for savings and investments, a daily series of reminders and action items will keep your money issues on time and on track. ◆ Recommit to retirement. If you’re employed or self-employed, here’s how to make a retirement savings resolution stick. First, make sure you’re signed up for a 401(k), 403(b) or 457 plan at work or a corresponding SEP-IRA, self-directed 401(k) or other self-employment retirement plan that fits your tax and financial situation. Then check what your 2016 maximum contribution (www.irs.gov) is for your respective plan. Finally, through budgeting or a plan to bring in more income, determine how you can come as close to your maximum contribution as possible for the coming year. And of course, don’t forget about Traditional or Roth IRAs (https://www.irs.gov/RetirementPlans/Traditional-and-Roth-IRAs) that you can contribute to independently of work-based plans. All of these options can improve your retirement prospects while saving you considerable money on taxes. ◆ Review your non-retirement benefits and insurance. For most employed and self-employed people, open enrollment for health and other company benefits wrapped up before year-end. But that doesn’t mean you can’t make notes at any point in the
Keeping New Year’s resolutions requires determination, study and focus. This year, build the kind of money habits that position you for success.
year for possible changes and improvements to your health insurance and related tax-advantaged accounts. The same goes for reviewing your personal home, auto, life and disability coverage for potential savings and/or better coverage. Qualified advisors can help you review these choices. ◆ Find more money to save. Whether it’s adjusting what you spend, paying off expenses or finding ways to bring in more income, saving more is one of the best financial objectives there is. The first step is to track and set spending limits – those limits will help you reset or eliminate expenses that are standing in the way of your goals. Bottom line: Making New Year’s resolutions always sounds like a good idea at the time, but keeping them requires determination, study and focus. This year, build the kind of money habits that position you for success.
Health care proxy appoints person to make health care decisions for you Dear Marci, What is a health care proxy? — Antoine Dear Antoine, A health care proxy is a document that appoints another person to make health care decisions for you, if you are unable to do so. This person is called a proxy or an agent. Naming a health care agent is one of the most important things you can do to ensure that you always receive the health care you prefer. Typically, you do not have to be terminally ill for a health care proxy to go into effect. If you do not appoint a health care proxy and cannot make health care decisions, state law determines who can make decisions on your behalf. Most states have laws that let close family members and others (surrogates) act on your behalf, if you haven’t appointed a health care agent. As long as you give your agent permission, he/she will usually have the flexibility to make most treatment decisions for you and access your medical records. When choosing a health care agent, appoint someone: ◆ Whom you trust. ◆ Who knows you well and understands your medical preferences. ◆ Who will be assertive in making decisions. ◆ Who will honor your wishes. Things you should discuss with your health care agent: ◆ Your attitude toward health, illness, dying, and death. ◆ Religious beliefs. ◆ Feelings about doctors and other caregivers. ◆ Feelings about palliative care versus life-sustaining treatments like artificial nutrition and hydration. ◆ Treatment preference if you are unconscious for a long time and not expected to recover. You don’t have to name anyone as your agent. Instead, you can create a living will to advise your doctors about your preferences. You don’t need a lawyer to write a health care proxy. You can use a standardized form and tailor it to your needs, but make sure it meets all of your state’s legal requirements. Discuss the document with your health care agent and your loved ones. Give a copy of the document to your health care agent and to your providers. These conversations can be difficult, but creating a health care proxy can help people be prepared for different health care situations. — Marci
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JANUARY 2017 | ZEST
FOOD & FUN Caprese Salad Topped Smoked Sausage Sandwiches
1 package Hillshire Farm Polska Kielbasa Smoked Sausage Links 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar 1 tablespoon olive oil 2 cups grape tomatoes, halved 1 package (8 ounces) fresh, small mozzarella balls, quartered 1 tablespoon chopped red onion 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil 1/4 teaspoon salt WWW.CULINARY.NET/ 6 French bread rolls, split Brush sausages with balsamic vinegar; set aside. Heat olive oil over medium heat in small skillet. Add tomatoes and cook until soft, about 3 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. In small bowl, combine tomatoes, mozzarella, red onion, basil and salt. Grill sausages according to package directions, turning frequently and brushing with balsamic vinegar. Place grilled sausage in each roll, top with tomato-mozzarella mixture. Serves 6.
Almond Snack Mix 1/3 cup whole unsalted almonds 2/3 cup multibran or wholegrain cereal squares 1/2 cup low-fat granola cereal without raisins 1/4 cup dried apricot halves, cut into strips, or golden raisins 1/4 cup sweetened dried cranberries WWW.CULINARY.NET Preheat oven to 350. Spread almonds in single layer on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake 5 to 10 minutes or until lightly toasted; stir once or twice to ensure even baking. Transfer to a plate to cool completely. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, stir together remaining ingredients. Stir in cooled almonds. Makes four 1/2-cup servings. Cook’s tip: If snack mix isn’t eaten the day you make it, use golden raisins. Moisture of dried apricots can cause the cereal to lose its crispness over time. Be sure almonds are completely cooled when you add them to the mix; otherwise, they will make it soggy.
Crossword puzzle Across 1. Go for 5.Accomplishments 10. Be a monarch 14. Bow 15. Move, as a plant 16. Cuckoos 17.To shift things around 19. Mouth, in slang 20.Add up 21. Graveyard 23. Brews 25. Bohemian, e.g. 26. Bluish gray 29. ___ de deux 32.Appropriate 35.To make something required 38. Fla. neighbor 39. Black cat, maybe 40.“Reversal of Fortune” star 41. Connive 42.Away 43.Your parent’s parent 45. Choice 47.“Malcolm X” director 48. Become stuck in a position 49. Chicken ____ 51. Small amounts, as of cream 53.Tool for cutting down trees/branches 57. Students 61. Shoestring
Crossword puzzle answer on Page 15 62. Math 64. Condo, e.g. 65. Chinese fruit 66.Ashcroft’s predecessor 67. Christian Science founder 68. Creates 69. Old World duck
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Down 1. Links rental 2. Sundae topper, perhaps 3. Sean Connery, for one 4. Loom 5. Cover, in a way 6. Dusk, to Donne
7.“Beowulf,” e.g. 8. Catch some Z’s 9.Arises 10. Sharp taps 11. Not yet shown 12. Pinocchio, at times 13. Catch a glimpse of 18. Heraldic color red 22.“... or ___!” 24. ______ notebooks 26. Be a busybody 27. King Julien in “Madagascar” films 28. Chief acid of vinegar 30.Agreeing (with) 31. Smoothed a wood surface 33. Beside 34. Coffee order 36.“Dear” one 37. Cooking meas. 41. Succeeds 43. Continue 44.Vinyl collectible 46. One of two equal parts 50. Church song 52.Any of the Aphid genus 53. Hint 54. Full house, e.g. 55.“Mi chiamano Mimi,” e.g. 56. Candle string 58.Any thing 59.Ancestry 60. Boat with an open hold 63. Not just “a”
FOOD & FUN ▲
Enjoying warm comfort foods during winter can serve as an exceptional way to defeat the icy chill. As the frost sets in and winds howl, nothing beats a warm bite of delicious food.
Pumpkin Butterscotch Bread Pudding 1 loaf (14 ounces) cinnamon challah bread or cinnamon brioche, cut into 3/4-inch cubes 4 large eggs 2 cans (12 ounces each) Nestlé Carnation Evaporated Lowfat 2 percent Milk 1 can (15 ounces) Libby’s 100 percent Pure Pumpkin 1 cup granulated sugar, plus 1 tablespoon 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon, divided 1/2 teaspoon salt 2 tablespoons packed brown sugar 1 cup Nestlé Toll House butterscotch flavored morsels Vanilla Dreyer’s or Edy’s Slow Churned Light Ice Cream Heat oven to 350. Grease 13-by-9-inch baking dish. On rimmed baking sheets, spread bread cubes in single layer. Bake, tossing occasionally, 10 minutes, or until dry. CULINARY.NET/NESTLE In large bowl, beat eggs; stir in evaporated milk, pumpkin, 1 cup granulated sugar, vanilla extract, 1 teaspoon cinnamon and salt. Add bread; toss gently to coat. Transfer mixture into prepared baking dish; let stand 30 minutes, or until bread is thoroughly saturated. Combine brown sugar with remaining granulated sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle morsels over bread mixture; top with brown sugar mixture. Bake 45-55 minutes, or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack 30 minutes to set. Serve warm with ice cream. Servings: 12.
Answer to Crossword Puzzle published on Page 14
Roasted Sonoma Chicken with Wild Rice and Carrot Butter 4 bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts 3/4 cup kosher salt, plus additional for seasoning 1/3 cup sugar 1 gallon water 1 cup carrot juice 4 tablespoons butter, diced 1 1/2 cups wild rice 3 1/3 cups chicken stock 2 large onions, diced 3-4 tablespoons olive oil 2 teaspoons curry spice 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar 4 tablespoons sun-dried tomato, chopped finely canola oil or olive oil 1/4 cup parsley, chopped Brine chicken in 3/4 cup salt, sugar and water. Refrigerate 1 hour; pat dry and store overnight, uncovered, in fridge. Add carrot juice to saucepan and reduce to thick consistency on high heat, 10-15 minutes. Whisk vigorously if juice separates. Whisk in butter. Set aside to cool. In pot, cover wild rice with chicken stock. Bring to simmer and cook 45 minutes to 1 hour. Season with salt. Heat oven to 400. In frying pan on medium-high heat, sweat onions in olive oil until soft. Add curry spice and toast until aromatic, 1-2 minutes. Add vinegar and salt; stir well. Fold through sun-dried tomatoes. Place chicken skin-side up on roasting pan fitted with rack. Brush chicken with canola or olive oil and season with salt. Roast about 25-35 minutes until golden brown; internal temperature should be 165° F. Drizzle with roasting juices; add salt and chopped parsley before plating. Serves: 4. To plate, add carrot butter to wild rice; scoop 1/2 cup onto each dish. Place chicken skin-side up on top of rice. Dollop with onion, curry and tomato mixture.
JANUARY 2017 | ZEST
Regional Eye Center
A Tradition in Eye Care Excellence Serving Hutchinson, Litchﬁeld, Glencoe, Cokato and the surrounding areas
Our “Tradition of Eye Care Excellence” spans for more than n 25 years. Today our dedication and focus on leading edge e technology and advanced diagnostic & surgical techniques has s been surpassed only by our commitment to quality patient care.. From the latest breakthroughs in laser and cataract care to 24 hour emergency eye care services, contact lenses and d Prescription Eyewear - look to Regional Eye Center for a lifetime e of better vision. Left to Right: Amy Nyquist, O.D., Allan D. Wortz, O.D., Christopher R. Wallyn, D.O., Michael P. Merck, M.D.
At Woodstone, we offer a smaller, more intimate, and more personal setting for our residents to call home. Being at home is such an important part of achieving a higher level of care. When a resident moves in to our community, they become a part of our family. Residents have the opportunity to be active through resident outings, community events and volunteering with different local organizations. By getting to know each resident and their family individually, we can better tailor the experience, and care, that our residents receive. Featuring: Care Suites and Memory Care • Private
• Health Related Services Apartments • Social, Recreational & Wellness • 24 Hour Staffing Activities • Emergency Response System • RN on staff • Personal Related Services • Home-Cooked Meals
• Salon/Barber Shop • Chapel • Weekly Housekeeping • Weekly Laundry
The more we care, the more beautiful life becomes. 1025 Dale Street SW, Hutchinson, Minnesota • 320-234-8917