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Lebanon County Edition | November 2017 • Vol. 12 No. 11

The Diabetes Disconnect page 4

special feature: giving from the heart page 10

wartime vets, spouses may qualify for benefit page 14

Savvy Senior

Elder Mediation Can Help Families Resolve Caregiving Conflicts

Jim Miller

Family Elder Mediation disagreements over an ill or While elderly parent’s mediators have caregiving been used for years to help needs, living arrangements, divorcing couples financial sort out legal decisions, and and financial medical care disagreements are some of the and avoid court many issues that battles, elder care Dear Bickering, mediation is a an elder care It’s not unusual when adult mediator can children disagree with each other relatively new and help with. specialized service regarding the care of an elder parent. But don’t If your siblings are willing, a good designed to help confuse this families resolve possible solution is to hire an “elder disputes that are with family or care mediator” who can help you November is National group therapy. related to aging work through your disagreements Family Caregivers Month parents or other Mediation is only peacefully. Here’s what you should about decisionknow. elderly relatives. making, not feelings and emotions. The job of an elder mediator is to step in as a neutral third party to help ease family tensions, listen to everyone’s concerns, hash out disagreements and misunderstandings, and help your family make decisions that are acceptable to everyone. We believe the care a person receives makes a Good mediators can also assist difference in his or her quality of life. Homeland’s your family in identifying experts such as estate planners, geriatric expert team is dedicated to providing a continuum care managers, or healthcare or of At Home care services…from non-medical personal financial professionals who can supply assistance to skilled nursing and rehabilitation, to important information for family compassionate hospice and palliative care. Dear Savvy Senior, Are there any services that you know of that help families resolve caregiving conflicts? My mother—who just turned 82—recently had a stroke, and to make matters worse, my two siblings and I have been perpetually arguing about how to handle her caregiving needs and finances. – Bickering Siblings

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decision making. Your family also needs to know that the mediation process is completely confidential and voluntary, and it can take anywhere from a few hours to several meetings depending on the complexity of your issues. And if some family members live far away, a conference or video call can be used to bring everyone together. If you’re interested in hiring a private elder care mediator, you can expect to pay anywhere from $100 to more than $500 per hour depending on where you live and whom you choose. Or, you may be able to get help through a nonprofit community mediation service that charges little to nothing. Finding a Mediator To locate an elder mediator, start by contacting your area agency on aging—call (800) 677-1116 to get your local number—which may be able to refer you to local resources, or search online at Another good option is the National Association for Community Mediation website (, which can help you search for free or low-cost, community-based mediation programs in your area. Unfortunately, there is currently no formal licensing or national credentialing required for elder mediators, so make sure the person you choose has extensive experience with elder issues that are similar to what your family is dealing with. Also, be sure you ask for references and check them. Most elder mediators are attorneys, social workers, counselors, or other professionals who are trained in mediation and conflict resolution. Jim Miller is a regular contributor to the NBC Today show and author of The Savvy Senior Book.

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November 2017


Cover Story

The Diabetes Disconnect Corporate Office

3912 Abel Drive, Columbia, PA 17512 Phone 717.285.1350 • Fax 717.285.1360 Chester County: 610.675.6240 Cumberland County/Dauphin County: 717.770.0140 Berks County/Lancaster County/ Lebanon County/York County: 717.285.1350 E-mail address: Website address:



Vice President and Managing Editor Christianne Rupp Editor, 50plus Publications Megan Joyce

ART DEPARTMENT Project Coordinator Renee McWilliams Production Artist Lauren McNallen

BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT Account Representatives Matthew Chesson Janette McLaurin Tia Stauffer Angie Willis Gina Yocum Events Manager Kimberly Shaffer Marketing Coordinator Mariah Hammacher

ADMINISTRATION Business Manager Elizabeth Duvall

Member of


50plus LIFE is published by On-Line Publishers, Inc. and is distributed monthly among senior centers, retirement communities, banks, grocers, libraries and other outlets serving the senior community. On-Line Publishers, Inc. will not knowingly accept or publish advertising which may be fraudulent or misleading in nature. Views expressed in opinion stories, contributions, articles and letters are not necessarily the views of the publisher. The appearance of advertisements for products or services does not constitute an endorsement of the particular product or service. The publisher will not be responsible for mistakes in advertisements unless notified within five days of publication. On-Line Publishers, Inc. reserves the right to revise or reject any and all advertising. No part of this publication may be reproduced or reprinted without permission of On-Line Publishers, Inc. We will not knowingly publish any advertisement or information not in compliance with the Federal Fair Housing Act, Pennsylvania State laws or other local laws.


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By Sandra Gordon If you’ve been diagnosed with diabetes, keeping track of your blood sugar can feel like a full-time job. You might be more tired than usual too. Given all that’s going on, it’s easy to lose track of the fact that diabetes can be a catalyst for other major conditions, including heart disease, kidney failure, bone-weakening osteoporosis, arthritis, diabetic neuropathy (nerve damage), and vision problems. Being aware of the connection, though, is important because you can be an advocate for your own health and take charge of the situation. To reduce your risk of complications, these steps can help you derail the diabetes domino effect. Go on a fact-finding mission. Your HbA1C level is the best gauge of diabetes control because it’s an average of your blood sugar over the past two to three months. Generally, you’re shooting for a number below 7 percent. Anything above 7 signals your blood sugar isn’t as well controlled as it could be. “If your HbA1c is high, be your own detective and solve the mystery,” says Margaret Eckert-Norton, PhD, RN, a certified diabetes educator. In addition to daily fasting blood-sugar testing, “I ask my patients to do more random checking of their blood sugar instead of sticking with a set routine,” she says. Eckert-Norton suggests monitoring your blood sugar frequently during the day, such as an hour or two after breakfast and lunch and before bed, for a week or so. Then, show your data to your doctor to see if your medication needs adjusting. Blood sugar that’s not well managed can quickly damage the tiny capillary blood vessels in your eyes, kidneys, and in extremities, such as your feet, which can lead to diabetic retinopathy, joint damage, and limb amputation. These blood vessels are thinner than a hair. “There’s strong evidence that managing Type 2 diabetes reduces the risk of these complications considerably,” says endocrinologist Kevin Pantalone, DO. Chronic high blood sugar can also affect your risk of heart attack and stroke. Cardiovascular disease is the No. 1 killer of patients with Type 2 diabetes. That’s why you’ll also want to aggressively control your blood pressure and cholesterol by following your

diabetes eating plan and taking high blood pressure and/or cholesterol-lowering medication, such as a statin drug, if necessary. Don’t wait to lose weight. “When most patients are diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, they’ve already lost 50 percent of their body’s ability to make insulin,” Pantalone says. Still, shedding pounds (if you need to) as close to diagnosis as possible, when you still have 50 percent capacity, can make blood sugar easier to control over the long run and can help prevent diabetes complications, including heart disease, stroke, and osteoarthritis. There’s a strong link between diabetes and osteoarthritis. Researchers suspect that high blood sugar may damage cartilage in joints. But losing weight is a fix for both conditions. Shedding as little as 15 pounds can cut knee pain in half and reduce blood sugar, enabling some people to taper off insulin and other medications. Overall, “overweight is the master condition that drives the development of other major conditions,” Pantalone says. But losing weight tends to make everything better. Quit it! Smoking increases the risk of death from heart attack in people with diabetes by 52 percent, according to a study in BMJ Open. Kicking the habit is not only good for your heart and blood sugar control, it’s also important for bone health. People with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes have an increased risk of fractures. Researchers suspect it may be due to the interplay between insulin and osteocalcin, a hormone found in bone. Switch medication. Some medications to manage blood sugar can cause weight gain, but several newer ones are available that don’t have this side effect. If you start to put on pounds after you’ve been diagnosed, ask your doctor about changing your medication. Be sure to fill your prescriptions quickly and use injectable insulin exactly as it is prescribed. Don’t try to stretch insulin by skipping injections or taking smaller doses. If the cost of insulin is a problem, ask your doctor about different, less expensive types of insulin available.

See where you are. In addition to keeping your regular doctor’s appointments to monitor your blood sugar, see an ophthalmologist regularly. Diabetes can cause blood vessels in the eye to leak, which causes blurry vision and leads to vision loss. But in the early stages, you might not notice it. A yearly dilated eye exam can detect and treat the problem before it progresses. Exercise your options. “Physical activity acts like insulin. If you’re more physically active, the amount of injectable insulin you may need might go down,” says diabetes researcher William Herman, MD, MPH. Try to exercise 30 minutes per

day at least five days per week with moderately intense activities, such as brisk walking, jogging, swimming, or cycling. “Exercising five times per week really helped me,” says Ron Saul, 69, a former NFL offensive lineman for the Washington Redskins who was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes at age 50. “I do the elliptical machine 45 minutes each day and lift weights, and feel great.” Besides helping to manage blood sugar, being active can provide a feeling of well-being that can make you want to keep up the good work. Sandra Gordon is an award-winning writer who delivers expert advice and the latest developments in health, nutrition, parenting, and consumer issues.

With Diabetes Looming, Area Grandmother Decides to ‘Make a Choice’ Q: What were your health status The Health Promotion Council and lifestyle like before you took recently announced the launch of steps to change them?, a new online Linda D’Ambrosia: I was carrying resource to help in the fight against a lot of extra weight, so I developed diabetes and obesity. high blood pressure. Part of a I couldn’t walk very collaboration with the Pennsylvania far without losing my breath, my joints Department hurt, and I was tired of Health, all of the time. is a I knew if I didn’t statewide initiative connecting make a change that a diabetes diagnosis Pennsylvanians was right around the to personal corner. success stories, diabetes education programs, and Q: How was Type 2 diabetes a free online affecting both you resource (www. Linda D’Ambrosia and your family? to LD: I have family help encourage and members with both Type 1 and inspire Pennsylvanians to prioritize their health and make a choice to live Type 2 diabetes. I saw firsthand how a healthier lifestyle. debilitating and cruel the disease can be. Seeing someone whose sugar is too Linda D’Ambrosia, of Harrisburg, low and not being able to wake them was recently named a healthy up is a frightening experience. champion for the Make A Choice Also, seeing them struggle with initiative. Read on to learn how high day-to-day issues that come with blood pressure and a frightening diabetes, like thinking clearly or fainting spell finally prompted keeping medications organized and D’Ambrosia to begin improving her health, energy, and longevity. please see DIABETES page 6

About Our Company For more than 20 years, On-Line Publishers, Inc. has celebrated serving the mind, heart, and spirit of the 50plus community of Central Pennsylvania. Our corporate office is located outside Columbia, Pa.


50plus LIFE is a monthly newspaper touching on issues and events relevant to the 50+ community. The Resource Directory for the Caregiver, Aging, and Disabled is published annually in distinct county editions with information from local businesses and organizations that meet the needs of these groups. 50plus Living, an annual publication, is a guide to residences and healthcare options for mature adults in the Susquehanna and Delaware valleys. BusinessWoman is a monthly magazine with a focus on business. It features profiles of local executive women who are an inspiration to other professionals. Lifestyle and wellness articles are also included to round out the publication and address the many facets of a woman’s life. All publications are available in print and digital formats.


OLP Events, our events division, produces six 50plus EXPOs annually in Chester, Cumberland, Dauphin, Lancaster (two), and York counties. Entrance to the event, health screenings, and seminars held throughout the day are free to visitors. The women’s expo is a oneday event featuring exhibitors and interactive fun that encompass many aspects of a woman’s life. In 2018, women’s expos will be held in Hershey in the spring and in Lebanon, Lancaster, and Carlisle in the fall. OLP Events presents the Veterans’ Expo & Job Fair, a free, two-part event that takes place in York and in Wyomissing in the spring, in the Capital Area in late summer, and in Lancaster in the fall. The Veterans’ Expo connects active and retired military members and their families with benefits, resources, and employers.

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DIABETES from page 5 on track, was eye-opening to me. Q: What finally led you to decide to work on your health? LD: One day while I was at work, I experienced a fainting spell that turned out to be a common symptom of high blood pressure. My physician put me on medication for high blood pressure, and I didn’t like how it made me feel. After about six months, I decided to make a change and finally take care of myself. That day, I made a choice to put myself first and take care of my body—and when you take care of your body, you are also taking care of your mind. I was tired of being tired and taking medication. I didn’t like myself and hated shopping for clothing. Q: What immediate steps did you take to improve your health? LD: I began educating myself about how I could change my eating habits. I started planning menus that included healthier choices. I joined

an organization to help me with my weight loss and learned healthier eating habits. It’s interesting because I was very strict about what I served my family; they had to eat vegetables and fruits at every meal. (Once again, I always put myself last.) On Sunday nights, I loaded my lunchbox up with foods that I knew were safe to snack on without feeling guilty. I shopped and prepared meals and snacks in advance so there was no excuse to choose other options. Once I had the support of the weight-loss organization and my family, the weight started coming off. I was then able to go off the medication and started adding exercise into my life. I began with slow, short walks and then became a member of a gym so the weather couldn’t be an excuse to not exercise. Soon, I was able to add more mileage to my walks, I walked faster, and I felt so much better. The fatigue disappeared too.





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Q: What achievements or changes are you most proud of? LD: I’m really happy that I am a role model for my daughters and granddaughter. If they don’t make a choice to take care of themselves, they could one day develop diabetes and other health issues. They all eat very healthy, exercise, and run races with me, which is a great way to spend time with my family. Keeping my weight down and staying as healthy as I can is the best feeling. I want to see my grandchildren grow up and keep doing the things that I couldn’t do 15 years ago. I also found that I can eat things that I want to and I don’t deprive myself of anything. Finding a balance is key to keeping the weight off, staying off high blood pressure meds, and preventing diabetes.

Q: How did you become involved with the Make A Choice initiative and what do you like about it? LD: I volunteered for a weightloss program and met others who were struggling to lose weight. I was contacted by one of the group members who remembered who I was and remembered my journey. I am excited to be a part of the Make A Choice initiative as it is intended to inspire and help all Pennsylvanians to get on track to live a healthier lifestyle. By doing so, they can prevent the onset of diabetes and other serious health conditions. Q: What advice do you offer someone who is facing a diabetes diagnosis and feeling overwhelmed? LD: You can make a change to be fit and live the life that you want and deserve no matter what your age. There are support groups as well as specific diabetes-prevention and diabetes self-management programs that will give you the support and guidance you need to get started. A list of these programs can be found at Put yourself first, and the feeling of being overwhelmed will lessen as you see and feel the changes in your body. You will have more energy, have more choices in your life, and become a stronger person inside and out. Get your family and neighbors on board too. Now, my neighbors and I walk together at least twice a week. I get to spend time with them and we motivate each other. It’s a great feeling. To learn more about diabetes prevention and management programs in the Capital Region, visit www.makeachoice. org. To see more about Linda D’Ambrosia’s journey to health and wellness, go to healthy-champions.



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Q: How has your fitness routine evolved over time? LD: With working full time, I realized that if I went home before my walks or going to the gym, I would not do anything. I would vacuum, clean, watch TV, and tell myself that I would do it tomorrow. That did not work. I now have an extra pair of sneakers and socks under my desk and walk at lunchtime. I also walk after work before I go home, so there is no excuse. It’s done and I feel great when I know that I put in time for me! I looked more closely at my health insurance and discovered that I could attend more than one gym. I have (jogged) a few half marathons. I walk the dogs, and I take my granddaughter for walks and enjoy spending time running after her! I also have a gym bag packed with an extra pair of sneakers and workout gear so wherever I am, I have a choice.

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These Herbs May Ease Diabetes Symptoms with water and when consumed as juice.

Type 2 diabetes afflicts millions of people around the world. Medication such as insulin can help keep your blood sugar levels stable, but according to the Medical News Today website, these herbs can also have a beneficial effect: Aloe vera. Known for its skincare benefits, aloe may also help increase the amount of insulin produced by the pancreas. It can be consumed as juiced pulp added to beverages or as extracts available as supplements. Cinnamon. This tasty spice offers many benefits for diabetes patients, including positive results in

Milk thistle. An extract called silymarin from this herb has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, which are beneficial for people with diabetes.



maintaining appropriate blood sugar and insulin levels as well as decreasing blood pressure. Consult with your doctor before using it as a supplement, though.

Bitter melon. Used for centuries as a traditional medicine in China and India, the seeds from this melon appear to lower blood sugar levels. It’s also effective when its pulp is mixed

Fenugreek. The seeds from this herb contain fibers that help slow the digestion of sugar and other carbohydrates. They may also help to lower cholesterol as well.     Always check with your physician before taking any herbs or supplements, of course.

At Your Fingertips Helpful numbers, hotlines, and local businesses and organizations eager to serve you—all just a phone call away. Office of Aging Lebanon County Area Agency on Aging (717) 273-9262 Pharmacies CVS/pharmacy Senior Centers Annville Senior Community Center (717) 867-1796

Emergency Numbers Poison Control Center (800) 222-1222 Food Resources Food Stamps (800) 692-7462

Bureau of Blindness and Visual Services (717) 787-7500

Medicaid (800) 692-7462

CONTACT Helpline (717) 652-4400

Medicare (800) 382-1274

Kidney Foundation (717) 652-8123

PennDOT (800) 932-4600

Lebanon County Area Agency on Aging Meals on Wheels (717) 273-9262

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (717) 652-6520

Pennsylvania Crime Stoppers (800) 472-8477

Lupus Foundation (888) 215-8787 Hearing Services Melnick, Moffitt & Mesaros ENT Associates 927 Russell Drive, Lebanon (717) 274-9775

Recycling (800) 346-4242

Pennsylvania Office for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (800) 233-3008 V/TTY Hospitals Medical Society of Lebanon County (717) 270-7500

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (800) 827-1000 Housing Assistance Housing Assistance & Resources Program (HARP) (717) 273-9328

WellSpan Good Samaritan Hospital 252 S. Fourth St., Lebanon (717) 270-7500 Hotlines Energy Assistance (800) 692-7462

Lebanon County Housing & Redevelopment Authorities (717) 274-1401

Lebanon County Christian Ministries (717) 272-4400 Salvation Army (717) 273-2655 Funeral & Cremation Services Cremation Society of Pennsylvania Serving Lebanon County (800) 720-8221 Health & Medical Services Alzheimer’s Association (717) 651-5020 American Cancer Society (717) 231-4582 American Diabetes Association (717) 657-4310 American Heart Association/ American Stroke Association (717) 207-4265 American Lung Association (717) 541-5864 Arthritis Foundation (717) 274-0754

Environmental Protection Agency Emergency Hotline (800) 541-2050 IRS Income Tax Assistance (800) 829-1040

Maple Street Senior Community Center (717) 273-1048

Social Security Information (800) 772-1213

Myerstown Senior Community Center (717) 866-6786

United Way of Lebanon County 2-1-1

Lebanon HOPES (717) 274-7528, ext. 3201 Insurance Medicare Hotline (800) 638-6833 Legal Services Pennsylvania Bar Association (717) 238-6715

Northern Lebanon County Senior Community Center (717) 865-0944 Palmyra Senior Community Center (717) 838-8237 Senior Center of Lebanon Valley (717) 274-3451 Veterans Services Governor’s Veterans Outreach (717) 234-1681 Lebanon VA Medical Center 1700 S. Lincoln Ave., Lebanon (717) 228-6000 or (800) 409-8771 Volunteer opportunitIes Compeer of Lebanon County 4 S. Fourth St., Lebanon (717) 272-8317 RSVP of the Capital Region (717) 454-8647

Not an all-inclusive list of advertisers in your area.

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November 2017


Nursing & Rehabilitation Centers The listings with a shaded background have additional information about their center in a display advertisement in this edition.

Bethany Village – The Oaks

325 Wesley Drive • Mechanicsburg, PA 17055 (717) 766-0279 • Number of Beds: 69 Rehabilitation Unit: Yes Alzheimer’s Unit: Yes Skilled Licensed Nursing: Yes Therapy: Speech, Occupational, Physical Long-Term Care: Yes Respite Care: Yes 24-Hour Medical Care: Yes Recreational Activities: Yes Scheduled Entertainment: Yes

Private Rooms Available: Yes Semi-Private Rooms Available: Yes Pet Visitation Allowed: Yes Beauty/Barber Shop: Yes Medicare: Yes Medicaid: Yes Accreditations/Affiliations: CARF/CCAC; Eagle, LeadingAge PA Comments: Maplewood Assisted Living also available.

Homeland Center

1901 North Fifth Street • Harrisburg, PA 17102-1598 (717) 221-7902 • Number of Beds: 95 Rehabilitation Unit: No Alzheimer’s Unit: Yes Skilled Licensed Nursing: Yes Therapy: Speech, Occupational, Physical Long-Term Care: Yes Respite Care: Yes 24-Hour Medical Care: Yes Recreational Activities: Yes Scheduled Entertainment: Yes

Private Rooms Available: Yes Semi-Private Rooms Available: Yes Pet Visitation Allowed: Yes Beauty/Barber Shop: Yes Medicare: Yes Medicaid: Yes Accreditations/Affiliations: AAHSA, LeadingAge PA (PANPHA), NHPCO, PHN, HPNA Comments: A beautiful, full-service continuing care retirement community with a 150-year history of exemplary care.

The Middletown Home

999 West Harrisburg Pike • Middletown, PA 17057 (717) 944-3351 • Number of Beds: 102 Rehabilitation Unit: No Alzheimer’s Unit: No Skilled Licensed Nursing: Yes Therapy: Speech, Occupational, Respiratory, Physical Long-Term Care: Yes Respite Care: Yes 24-Hour Medical Care: Yes Recreational Activities: Yes

Scheduled Entertainment: Yes Private Rooms Available: Yes Semi-Private Rooms Available: Yes Pet Visitation Allowed: Yes Beauty/Barber Shop: Yes Medicare: Yes Medicaid: Yes Comments: Our campus offers skilled nursing and rehabilitation services, personal care, and independent living residences.

StoneRidge Towne Centre

7 West Park Avenue • Myerstown, PA 17067 (717) 866-6541 • Number of Beds: 135 Rehabilitation Unit: Yes Alzheimer’s Unit: Yes Skilled Licensed Nursing: Yes Therapy: Speech, Physical, Occupational Long-Term Care: Yes Respite Care: Yes 24-Hour Medical Care: Yes Recreational Activities: Yes Scheduled Entertainment: Yes

Private Rooms Available: Yes Semi-Private Rooms Available: Yes Pet Visitation Allowed: Yes Beauty/Barber Shop: Yes Medicare: Yes Medicaid: Yes Comments: A devoted team providing care and compassion in the heart of Myerstown. Personal care available.

Claremont Nursing & Rehabilitation Center 1000 Claremont Road • Carlisle, PA 17013 (717) 243-2031 • Number of Beds: 282 Rehabilitation Unit: Yes Alzheimer’s Unit: Yes Skilled Licensed Nursing: Yes Therapy: Speech, Occupational, Physical Long-Term Care: Yes Respite Care: Yes 24-Hour Medical Care: Yes Recreational Activities: Yes Scheduled Entertainment: Yes

Private Rooms Available: No Semi-Private Rooms Available: Yes Pet Visitation Allowed: Yes Beauty/Barber Shop: Yes Medicare: Yes Medicaid: Yes Comments: Featuring Transitions at Claremont, a dedicated, 39-bed, shortterm rehab unit. Claremont provides quality skilled nursing and secured dementia care.

Mennonite Home Communities

1520 Harrisburg Pike • Lancaster, PA 17601 (717) 393-1301 • Number of Beds: 188 Rehabilitation Unit: Yes Alzheimer’s Unit: Yes Skilled Licensed Nursing: Yes Therapy: Speech, Occupational, Physical Long-Term Care: Yes Respite Care: Yes 24-Hour Medical Care: Yes Recreational Activities: Yes Scheduled Entertainment: Yes

Private Rooms Available: Yes Semi-Private Rooms Available: Yes Pet Visitation Allowed: Yes Beauty/Barber Shop: Yes Medicare: Yes Medicaid: Yes Accreditations/Affiliations: Equal Housing, LeadingAge PA Comments: Person-centered care with reputation for compassion and excellence. Established in 1903. Respite care available w/minimum stay.

Pleasant Acres Nursing & Rehabilitation Center 118 Pleasant Acres Road • York, PA 17402 (717) 840-7100 • Number of Beds: 375 Rehabilitation Unit: No Alzheimer’s Unit: Yes Skilled Licensed Nursing: Yes Therapy: Speech, Physical, Occupational Respiratory Long-Term Care: Yes Respite Care: Yes 24-Hour Medical Care: Yes Recreational Activities: Yes

Scheduled Entertainment: Yes Private Rooms Available: No Semi-Private Rooms Available: Yes Pet Visitation Allowed: Yes Beauty/Barber Shop: Yes Medicare: Yes Medicaid: Yes Comments: Elm Spring Residence Independent Living on campus.

Thornwald Home

442 Walnut Bottom Road • Carlisle, PA 17013 (717) 249-4118 • Number of Beds: 117 Rehabilitation Unit: No Alzheimer’s Unit: No Skilled Licensed Nursing: Yes Therapy: Speech, Occupational, Physical Long-Term Care: Yes Respite Care: Yes 24-Hour Medical Care: Yes Recreational Activities: Yes Scheduled Entertainment: Yes

UCC Homes

Private Rooms Available: Yes Semi-Private Rooms Available: Yes Pet Visitation Allowed: Yes Beauty/Barber Shop: Yes Medicare: Yes Medicaid: Yes Comments: A place to be yourself and celebrate your life.

This is not an all-inclusive list of agencies and providers. These advertisers are eager to provide additional information about their services.


November 2017

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Nursing & Rehabilitation Centers The listings with a shaded background have additional information about their center in a display advertisement in this edition.

Transitions Healthcare – Gettysburg

595 Biglerville Road • Gettysburg, PA 17325 (717) 334-6249 • Number of Beds: 135 Rehabilitation Unit: Yes Alzheimer’s Unit: Yes Skilled Licensed Nursing: Yes Therapy: Speech, Occupational, Respiratory, Physical Long-Term Care: Yes Respite Care: Yes 24-Hour Medical Care: Yes Recreational Activities: Yes

Scheduled Entertainment: Yes Private Rooms Available: Yes Semi-Private Rooms Available: Yes Pet Visitation Allowed: Yes Beauty/Barber Shop: Yes Medicare: Yes Medicaid: Yes Accreditations/Affiliations: PHCA, PACA Comments: Fully staffed Transitions Healthcare employees in skilled nursing and sub-acute rehab. Tours are encouraged!

If you would like to be featured on this important page, please contact your account representative or call (717) 285-1350.

This is not an all-inclusive list of agencies and providers. These advertisers are eager to provide additional information about their services.

The Bookworm Sez

The American Spirit Terri Schlichenmeyer

One nation, under God, indivisible. Those words deeply mean something to you. Maybe you’ve fought for them. Maybe you say them daily. You see the news and they leap to mind, whether you’re optimistic for the future or pessimistic about current events. And in the book The American Spirit by David McCullough, you’ll see how the former better describes our nation. For the past 50 years or so, author and historian McCullough has given many speeches. He’s been honored to talk to graduating classes, business organizations, and politicians throughout that time, and he says he often returns home knowing that “the American spirit [is] still at work.” Yes, we’ve always been divided— and united. We were united by people like John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and Manasseh Cutler, men about whom much has been written. And yet, says McCullough, there were other “giants” in history that we never hear much about: Henry Cabot Lodge Jr., Speaker Joe Martin,

Margaret Chase We are a Smith, Frank country that Church … the list is values education. endless. We mostly “want “How can we to belong to know who we something larger are and where we than ourselves.” We are headed,” asks are a nation made McCullough, “if of people born we don’t know here and around where we have come the world. We are from?” stewards of and Knowing why our teachers for historic cities grew, and why sites. they were important, And “When explains us in better bad news is riding detail; take the “Pitt high …” says from Pittsburgh The American Spirit: Who We Are McCullough, “… and the loss would and some keep and What We Stand For By David McCullough be devastating,” crying that the c. 2017, Simon & Schuster McCullough says, as country is going to 176 pages an example. the dogs, remember We also should it’s always been study the “energy” of the documents going to the dogs in the eyes of some, created by the Founding Fathers— and that 90 percent, or more, of the and about those fathers, we must people are good people … remember that they were “living men” “We all know that. Let’s all pitch and fallible humans. They wrote with in. And never lose heart.” their reputations in mind, “staking The news makes you want to their lives on what they believed …” scream? Come over here and join the

club—but bring your copy of The American Spirit. There’s a lot we can learn together. We can do that, says author David McCullough, by reading history to get a bigger picture of the arms-wideopen optimism shared by America’s brightest citizens. Here, in this anthology of speeches, McCullough displays unparalleled storytelling skills with tales of those preachers, politicians, visionaries, men, and women whose work meant everything to a growing nation. It’s hard not to get caught up in McCullough’s eagerness to know those tales, and it’s hard not to be stirred by them. This book is small, but its message is huge. So, if you’re a student of current events, give it the introspection and time it demands. Do that, and The American Spirit could pledge for you a new outlook. The Bookworm is Terri Schlichenmeyer. Terri has been reading since she was 3 years old and she never goes anywhere without a book. She lives on a hill in Wisconsin with two dogs and 14,000 books.

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November 2017


Giving From the Heart Donation Options for Nonprofit Giving Interested in making a donation to a nonprofit? The following are the four primary methods donors use to support causes they value while adding meaning and purpose to their own legacies. 1. The Outright Gift. If you write a check, give some clothing, or transfer some stock to a nonprofit, you are making an outright gift. This is by far the most popular way for donors to give to nonprofit organizations. Nonprofits love the outright gift because it provides resources they can put to use immediately, a critical need for most. In addition, this method typically has low overhead costs and few administrative complications,

financial liabilities, or requirements for specialized staff training. Donors tend to choose the outright gift because it is easy to understand and appropriate for gifts of any size to nonprofits of any size. The outright gift also brings donors the satisfaction of knowing that their dollars are going directly to work for a cause they believe in. They can see tangible results of their giving during

insurance policy beneficiary form. At the end of the donors’ lives, the designated nonprofits receive these gifts as specified. For many donors, the most important advantage of a bequest is that it allows them to retain their assets until the end of their lives— ensuring their funds’ availability should they need these assets to meet unexpected crises. Donors also like the bequest because it can be kept confidential. This is important for those who wish to remain anonymous and not become candidates for ongoing fundraising efforts. Many donors like the idea that they can easily change their bequests should their area of

their lifetimes. Outright gifts also provide most donors with the full measure of tax deduction and tax avoidance for which they qualify. 2. The Bequest (and beneficiary designations). Donors can create a bequest by putting a paragraph of instructions in their will. They can accomplish much the same result by adding the name of their nonprofit to their IRA or life

please see GIVING page 12

Do you or does someone you know have an interesting hobby or collection? A special passion or inspirational experience? A history of dedicated volunteer work? If so, tell us, and we’ll consider your suggestion for a future profile story! Just fill out the questionnaire below and return it to:  LIFE, 3912 Abel Drive, Columbia, PA 17512, or email your responses to Megan Joyce, editor, at Your name: ___________________________ Your phone number/email address: _____________________________________________________ Name of person nominated (if not you):__________________________________ Their town of residence: _______________________________ Please receive their permission to nominate them. Nominee’s age range: 50–59





Why would you/your nominee make a great profile? ____________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ 3912 Abel Drive, Columbia, PA 17512


November 2017

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(717) 285-1350 • (717) 770-0140 • (610) 675-6240

MAKING THE GREATEST IMPACT United Way of Lebanon County In the early 1930s, many Community Chests, the forerunners of United Way, adopted the red feather as a symbol of service to the community. For many years, the annual campaign here in Lebanon County was referred to as the “red feather campaign.” Donors were given small red feather lapel pins to show they had contributed to making our community a better place to live and work.

In honor of our past leaders, United Way of Lebanon County is proud to introduce the Red Feather Society. Donors who gift to United Way’s endowment fund through planned and estate giving are recognized as the members of this philanthropic group. Such gifts foundationally ensure that thousands of lives in Lebanon County are touched for the better, creating a legacy of generosity which is tangible in our community in perpetuity. Thank you to the individuals and families who have generously given to United Way, including trusts and planned gifts from: Henry J. & Erla L. Deck • Dr. Richard D. & Isabel G. Schreiber Family • Robert P. Hoffman • Russell Stine • Raymond T. Wentling • Robert J. Phillips

Your United Way of Lebanon County As a trusted community leader since 1931, United Way partners with businesses, donors, and service providers to identify community needs and facilitate collaboration. In order to directly improve lives, United Way focuses on programs that help members of our community: Achieve education and character success Access healthcare resources & lead a healthy lifestyle 7JFHM‫ܪ‬SFSHNFQXYFGNQNY^ NSIJUJSIJSHJ Access safety net resources such as food & shelter

Leave a legacy of philanthropy in our community, and support United Way with the ultimate gift. 100% of every dollar given goes directly to local impact programs, thanks to the generosity of our Building Block sponsors, who underwrite administrative costs for United Way of Lebanon County.

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To learn more about the Red Feather Society or to make your year-end gift, contact CEO Kenny Montijo or Director of Community Development Maddy Lynch at 717-273-8144

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GIVING from page 10 primary interest change. For the small percentage of donors whose estates may be subject to estate taxes, the bequest by will is an effective way to reduce such taxes. This option works for any amount of money. Because IRA funds that remain in a donor’s estate will likely be subject to a high income-tax rate, these funds also make tax-effective end-of-life gifts. Bequests tend to be quite large. This is logical since, with a bequest, donors are freed from the sense of constraint they might feel in making a large gift during their lifetime. Another advantage for both donors and nonprofits is that bequests typically entail no significant costs that might diminish the actual amount received by the nonprofit: If a donor bequests $25,000, the nonprofit will get $25,000.

Questions for Donors to Ask Themselves • W hat are my values and objectives? What causes do I feel strongly about? What do I want to accomplish with my giving? What giving methods can best help me achieve my charitable goals? • W hen do I want to give money— now or at the end of my life? • W hen do I want my nonprofit to be able to spend the money that I give—now or at the end of my life? • How engaged in the process do I want to be? Am I comfortable with more paperwork, more tax forms, and more consultations with my lawyer, accountant, and financial advisor? Or would I prefer to just give money to a cause that I believe in (now or at my death) as simply and economically as I can? • Do I seek to gain financial advantage by giving money away? Do I look to my nonprofit for advantageous financial products? • W hat true net advantage is there to me (or to my nonprofit) in giving away money through one of the more complex methods as compared with the outright gift and the bequest?

Although bequests are not tax deductible during the donor’s lifetime, for many donors, the advantages often override this tax-deduction disadvantage. 3. Life Income Gifts. The two most common options for life income gifts are the charitable gift annuity and the charitable remainder trust. Life income gifts are simple in concept. The donor gives money or another asset to the nonprofit today, and the nonprofit owns and manages this money until the donor’s death, while paying out an annual fixed payment (typically) to the donor or a designated beneficiary. With CGAs and CRTs, the nonprofit gets the funds that remain after the donor’s death. As logic would suggest, the more financial benefit the donor gets, the less benefit the nonprofit gets. Life income gifts are typically deferred gifts. With some exceptions, the nonprofit gets to spend the money only after the donor’s death. With very few exceptions, the donor cannot change the arrangement once it has been made. The CGA is relatively straightforward; it is more complicated than a bequest, but simpler than a gift trust. The arrangement is bound by a simple contract. The payout is guaranteed by the assets of the nonprofit. The donor gets a tax deduction at the time the gift is made, based on the true gift amount of the asset—but not on the portion that is slated to be returned to the donor as part of the lifetime payout. Many donors like the CGA. They are pleased that their cash flow will increase and that they will have guaranteed income for life. They will typically enjoy an immediate (although partial) tax deduction, and their nonprofit will get whatever money is left over when they die. Gift trusts (CRTs and their many variations) and other split-interest instruments are not simple. Because these trusts represent a world of technical complexity, with many variations and exceptions, a detailed exploration of them is best left to those who might feel these options are appropriate for their situations. The adviser community can provide a wealth of information on these arrangements and on the full range of split-interest gift techniques. A gift trust may be the right method when a potential donor has a strong charitable intent, is without heirs who need an inheritance, and has significant assets tied up in an illiquid property that does not generate enough (or any) income. A gift trust might provide the donors with a significant increase in income while providing the charity of their choice with a greatly enhanced gift, given that capital gains and estate tax “savings” would go to the nonprofit in the form of a larger gift, rather than to the IRS as a tax payment. Gift trusts are often proposed at minimum levels of $100,000 or even lower. The minimums at many commercial-trust companies, however, are in the $250,000–$400,000 range. 4. The Family Foundation. A family foundation is a separate financial entity established to hold, manage, and distribute gifted assets. It is the most complex means of giving, somewhat akin to managing a small business. It lets the donor establish a legacy that will remain in perpetuity. People also set up foundations to provide a learning and relationshipbuilding experience for family members. Some donors like that the family foundation lets them retain a high degree of administrative control, but others may not enjoy that level of involvement. The family foundation carries with it the responsibility to adhere to a large body of government regulations. With a family foundation, the donated assets remain intact and generally grow over time. Annual distributions are made over time, generally at a minimum level of 5 percent of trust assets per year. Source: Robert Livingston, Colorado Planned Giving Roundtable


November 2017

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Is This Thing On?

Is This Thing On? 10 Great Apps Abby Stokes

There are more than a million apps (programs for your smartphone and tablet) out there for fun, guidance, distraction, and information. Here are 10 apps handpicked just for you to enjoy: TED – TED is food for the brain (without the calories). The app offers access to truly brilliant, inspirational, and educational talks. Each talk is less than 20 minutes. Find Friends – If you’re meeting up with someone and you want to know where they are, or if you want to check where your family member or friend is on the road without calling or texting, you can see their progress on a map. Everyone you track or who tracks you must optin, so you won’t be able to track your friends or be tracked without explicit consent. Skype – Skype allows you to video conference, text, or call for free or at a fraction of the price all over the globe. If you’re in a Wi-Fi area, you can connect free of charge or bank money in your Skype account to make calls. Productive – Productive has a higher goal than other “to-do” apps. You don’t simply tick items off of a list; it encourages you to change routines and habits. Lists are simple to browse, and the calendar pages make tracking progress a breeze. Pixify – Pixify transforms photos into tiny works of painted art. Simply select which artwork you’d like your photo to imitate, or use the custom tab to change brush size, style, and image resolution. Triposo – Triposo elevates itself above most travel guide apps with 50,000 destinations worldwide complete with information on bars, restaurants, hotels, tours, and attractions. It works offline, which is perfect for when you’re ambling about somewhere new without a data connection. Citymapper – If you live in or visit one of the cities listed (which include London, Paris, Berlin, and New York), Citymapper is a great tool to easily find your way around. It zeros in on your location and then provides travel options, routing, and, where possible, live times for transit. Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock – Sleep Cycle analyzes your sleep and provides detailed statistics when you wake. It constantly checks out what phase of sleep you’re in and tries to wake you at the best possible time, in a gentle way. It helps you feel refreshed and relaxed on waking up. Pocket – Save for later what you can’t read or watch now. you store articles,

videos, or pretty much anything into Pocket. It works directly with your browser or with apps like Twitter and Flipboard. Mint – Track, budget, and manage your finances all in one place so you can see where you’re spending and where you can save. Keep a record of your savings, checking accounts, and credit or debit cards; input transactions; and set reminders for dates, such as bill payments, to avoid late fees. Ask your friends to recommend apps to add to your smartphone, and be sure to check out the list of 100 free recommended apps under Helpful Guides on Happy apping! Abby Stokes, author of “Is This Thing On?” A Friendly Guide to Everything Digital for Newbies, Technophobes, and the Kicking & Screaming and its companion website,, is the Johnny Appleseed of Technology, singlehandedly helping more than 300,000 people cross the digital divide.

Give someone you love the gift that entertains, informs, and inspires, month after month! Or renew an existing subscription! Get a 12-month subscription to 50plus LIFE for just $10. Mail form to: 50plus LIFE, 3912 Abel Drive, Columbia, PA 17512 Please start a gift subscription for: Beginning (month) _ ___________________________ Name_ _____________________________________ Street_ _____________________________________ Apt._ ______________________________________ City/State_ __________________________________ Zip_ _______________________________________ Sign card from: Your name___________________________________ Street_ _____________________________________ Apt._ ______________________________________ City/State_ __________________________________ Zip_ _______________________________________ Your phone number____________________________ Paper (or papers/$10 per edition): Expires 12/31/17 qChester qCumberland qDauphin qLancaster qLebanon qYork

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November 2017


Aid & Attendance Veterans’ Benefit

Nov. 2, 2017 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.


Spooky Nook Sports

2913 Spooky Nook Rd., Manheim

Please, join us! This combined event is FREE for veterans of all ages, active military, and their families.

At the Expo

Veterans Benefits Community Services Products and Services Available Support/Assistance Programs Education/Training Services

At the Job Fair

Employers Job Counseling Workshops/Seminars Resume Writing Assistance Principal Sponsor:


Sponsored by: AT&T • Blue Ridge Communications • Cigna / Cigna’s Health Improvement Tour Disabled American Veterans • ESPN 92.5 / 92.7 • Fulton Financial Corporation • LCTV Pennsylvania American Legion • Pennsylvania National Guard Outreach Office Pennsylvania State Headquarters VFW • WFYL • WHTM abc27 • Worley & Obetz, Inc.

Sponsor & Exhibitor Opportunities Available (717) 285-1350


November 2017

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Brought to you by:

Wartime Vets, Surviving Spouses May Qualify for A&A Benefit For many aging or disabled veterans who need help with activities of daily living, finding the funds to pay for the care they need is a common concern. Many veterans aren’t aware of the Aid & Attendance pension they have earned for themselves and their surviving spouses through their service to their country. The Aid and Attendance pension provides benefits that reduce the cost of care for wartime veterans and surviving spouses who require assisted living/ personal care. Veterans and surviving spouses who are eligible for a VA pension and require the aid and attendance of another person, or are housebound, may be eligible for additional monetary payment. “Aid & Attendance is most often used [to pay] for a personal care home and/or home care,” Daniel Tooth, director of the Lancaster County Department of Veterans Affairs, said. Tooth added that a common misconception about the benefit is “that all veterans can receive this benefit. Only wartime veterans and their surviving spouses are eligible.” When a veteran turns 65, the VA automatically classifies them as disabled, and if they meet income and asset criteria, they are eligible for a basic pension. Because Aid and Attendance and Housebound allowances increase the pension amount, people who are not eligible for a basic pension due to excessive income may be eligible for pension at these increased rates.

A&A and Housebound benefits are non-service-connected benefits (disability need not be a result of service). A veteran or surviving spouse may not receive Aid and Attendance benefits and Housebound benefits at the same time, nor may they receive non-service and service-connected compensation at the same time. If a veteran is currently receiving disability compensation from the VA, they cannot receive both the disability compensation and the A&A pension, but they can file for the increased pension based on non-service-connected health issues. If the application is approved, the VA will pay whichever benefit has the highest dollar amount. If the veteran is receiving compensation for a serviceconnected injury, that compensation would not be counted as income. Aid & Attendance (A&A) The Aid & Attendance increased monthly pension amount may be added to your monthly pension amount if you meet one of the following conditions: • You require the aid of another person in order to perform personal functions required in everyday living, such as bathing, feeding, dressing, toileting, adjusting prosthetic devices, or protecting yourself from the hazards of your daily environment (e.g., using a stove or other household appliances).

• You are bedridden, in that your disability or disabilities require that you remain in bed apart from any prescribed course of convalescence or treatment. • You are a patient in an assisted living or personal care facility due to mental or physical incapacity. • Your eyesight is limited to a corrected 5/200 visual acuity or less in both eyes or concentric contraction of the visual field to 5 degrees or less. Housebound This increased monthly pension amount may be added to your monthly pension amount when you are substantially confined to your immediate premises because of permanent disability. How to Apply In eastern Pennsylvania, you may apply for Aid and Attendance or Housebound benefits by writing to the Philadelphia VA Regional Office, P.O. Box 8079, Philadelphia, PA 19101. Call the office tollfree at (800) 827-1000 for more information. When considering a move to a personal care home or nursing facility, the community’s administration will often assist in making sure you have the necessary information collected and that it is complete prior to submission. What You Need You must have military discharge or DD 214. You should include copies of the Aid & Attendance Form 10 or VA 21, signed by a doctor, M.D., or D.O., validating the need for Aid and Attendance or Houseboundtype care. The VA does not accept physician assistant, nurse, or social worker signatures. Eligibility requirements include (canceled checks or statements are required for documentation of expenses): 1. Ninety continuous days of service in the U.S. military with at least one day during a wartime period as established by the U.S. Congress, e.g., World War II, Korea, Vietnam.

2. A medical diagnosis or condition that required the assistance of another person to meet the daily necessities of life, such as hygiene, eating, bathing, etc. Example: Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia, stroke, blindness, etc. 3. Household income that is below the established limits. Authorized out-of-pocket household medical expenses can be deducted from income. These expenses can include:

November 22 thru December 31 Wednesday–Sunday • 6–10 p.m.

• Medicare and health insurance premiums • Prescription drugs • Co-payments for doctors and prescriptions • Skilled nursing care or home care • A ssisted living (personal care in Pennsylvania) and nursing care expenses when required by medical conditions • Funeral expenses • Incontinence supplies

Coleman’s Memorial Park 1400 Maple Street, Lebanon, PA

15 per car*


* suggested donation

Household income and medical expenses include both veteran and spouse. The household asset limit is $80,000, not including the home and/or auto. The objective is to use medical expenses to reduce income. Income can be verified through SS 1099, tax returns, bank statements, etc. Although there is not currently a look-back period and penalty on asset transfers to reduce wealth, as is the case with Medicaid applications, Tooth warned changes are on the horizon for 2018. “There is a two-year look-back on asset transfers coming next year,” Tooth said. Even if you don’t qualify for the Aid & Attendance benefit, you may still qualify for the Basic Pension based on age and income or Pension with Housebound Benefits if you are housebound. For more information, check out the Aid and Attendance page on the Department of Veterans Affairs’ website (www.benefits. housebound.asp),, or call the Philadelphia VA Regional Office toll-free at (800) 827-1000.

Melnick, Moffitt & Mesaros ENT Associates • Full-Service Hearing Aid Center • Digital Rechargeable Aids at Very Affordable Prices (less than most retail stores)

• FREE 30-Day Trial • Payment Plans Available Thanks for voting us #1 in the Best of Lebanon Valley for the 5th consecutive year!

Howard B. Melnick, MD • John J. Moffitt, MD Glen J. Mesaros, MD • Donald Short, M.A., FAAA Sharon K. Hughes, M.S., FAAA

Please call for an appointment: (717) 274-9775 927 Russell Drive, Lebanon, PA 17042 50plus LIFE p

November 2017


Dear Pharmacist

Nootropes Help You Think with Clarity Suzy Cohen

In recognition of Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month, this month’s column will focus on natural remedies that support brain health and memory. Keep in mind that if there is anything you want to try, first ask your physician if it’s right for you. I am not a doctor, and besides, individual response varies. Now, for some intelligent, brainloving options, all available at health food stores nationwide (and possibly in your garden!): Lion’s Mane This is a medicinal mushroom, not an animal-derived furry ingredient. It is classified as a nootrope. Have you ever heard of that word before? Nootropics (“noah-trope-icks”) are defined as substances that

particular memory compound called acetylcholine. Bacopa blocks acetylcholinesterase (which breaks down acetylcholine), and acetylcholine is a highly desired neurotransmitter!

Photo by J.M. Garg

Bacopa Monnieri

Photo by Shashidhara Halady

Centella Asiatica

November is National Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month can improve cognitive function. Nootropic substances, whether they are medications or supplements, simply contain supportive nutrients that will help you maintain optimal

Account Representative On-Line Publishers, Inc., a 22-year-old publisher and event-production company, is seeking an account representative to sell our award-winning 50plus LIFE, Resource Directories, events, and websites.

brain function. Lion’s mane is known botanically as Hericium erinaceus, and it possesses well-known regenerative effects. There’s an active ingredient in lion’s mane mushroom that promotes the growth of nerve cells in the brain. When you grow new nerve cells, it’s helpful, right? Nootropes are the way of the world, and even kids know about them because on the street, they are termed “smart pills.” Some college kids like nootropic supplements to help them get through finals and exams. Bacopa Monnieri There is a gorgeous white flower that is a nootropic herb. It helps you maintain optimal brain function due to its strong, protective effect on one

Gotu Kola (Centella asiatica) Gotu kola, commonly called pennywort, contains compounds that support neurotrophin secretion. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor, or BDNF, is the most well studied of the neurotrophins. It helps maintain brain integrity and signals nerve cells to survive and differentiate. Gotu kola seems to help with mental fatigue. If your practitioner approves of these gentle remedies, you could certainly try them independently, or you can find multitasking formulas that contain these as well as other key nutrients and amino acids. Just be careful because some nootropic supplements are dangerous and, in fact, some are not supposed to be on the market anymore. Buy from trusted brands and companies. It’s completely within your rights to ask for a company’s “certificate of analysis” for purity and heavy-metal testing. If they don’t provide that document to you, run. This information is not intended to diagnose, prevent, or treat your disease. For more information about the author, visit

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Convenient print edition plus extensive online access. Discover support and services available to meet challenges you may encounter as a senior, as someone who is caring for an older loved one, or a person with a disability.


November 2017

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Social Security News

‘Wounded Warriors’ Site Supports Veterans By John Johnston

Supporting veterans and activeprocess is available to military duty members of the military is a service members who become key part of Social Security’s mission. disabled while on active military Our disability program has helped service on or after Oct. 1, 2001, countless wounded warriors and regardless of where the disability their loved ones. occurs. Every Even activeVeterans Day, duty military the nation who continue collectively to receive honors the pay while in brave people a hospital or who risk their on medical lives to protect leave should our country. consider For those applying for who return disability home with benefits if Veterans Day is Nov. 11 injuries, Social they’re unable Security is to work due to a resource they can turn to for a disabling condition. Active-duty disability benefits. Social Security’s status and receipt of military pay Wounded Warriors website is www. doesn’t necessarily prevent payment of Social Security disability benefits. The Wounded Warriors website Although a person can’t receive has answers to many commonly Social Security disability benefits asked questions and provides other while engaging in substantial useful information about disability work for pay or profit, receipt of benefits, including how veterans military payments should never stop can receive expedited processing of someone from applying for disability disability claims. benefits from Social Security. Benefits available through Social You can learn more by visiting Security are different from those our veterans page at www. available from the Department of Veterans Affairs; they require a John Johnston is a Social Security public separate application. affairs specialist. Social Security’s expedited

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Local Liaisons We want to include your neighborhood news in 50plus LIFE— but we need your help! We’re looking for volunteers to serve as our designated Local Liaisons in Central Pennsylvania. If you seem to always know what’s happening in your community and would be willing to send us brief stories, event info, and photos, email for more information.

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November 2017


Calendar of Events

Lebanon County

Community Programs/Support Groups Free and open to the public

Senior Center Activities

Nov. 4, 2 p.m. Concert: Parade of American Music Stone Ridge Poplar Run 440 E. Lincoln Ave., Myerstown (717) 273-0915

Annville Senior Activity Center – (717) 867-1796 200 S. White Oak St., Annville Nov. 1, 3, 8, 9, 17, 24, 9 a.m. – Help Your Neighbor Nov. 14, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. – Fabric Wealth Project Nov. 21, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. – Thanksgiving Gala at Cedar Grill

Nov. 22, 6-7 p.m. Alzheimer’s and Dementia Family Support Group Linden Village 100 Tuck Court, Lebanon (717) 274-7400

If you have an event you would like to include, please email information to for consideration.

Library Programs Annville Free Library, 216 E. Main St., Annville, (717) 867-1802 Tuesdays, 6:15 p.m. – AFL Knitters Nov. 7, 6:30 p.m. – Adult Coloring Club Lebanon Community Library, 125 N. Seventh St., (717) 273-7624 Matthews Public Library, 102 W. Main St., Fredericksburg, (717) 865-5523 Myerstown Community Library, 199 N. College St., Myerstown, (717) 866-2800 Palmyra Public Library, 325 S. Railroad St., (717) 838-1347 Richland Community Library, 111 E. Main St., Richland, (717) 866-4939

parks and recreation All events held at the Park at Governor Dick unless noted. Nov. 5, 9 a.m. – Fitness Hike Nov. 5, 1-4 p.m. – Music on the Porch: Bluegrass Nov. 18, 8 a.m. – Seventh Annual Bouldering Competition

Traditional Books are Alive and Well Publishers and traditional readers alike have long been worried about the rise of electronic books as sales of Amazon’s Kindle and other devices have grown, but their concerns may have been at least somewhat overblown. New studies suggest that the growth of e-book sales is leveling out—and possibly declining. According to the Chicago Tribune website, during the first nine months of 2016, e-book sales dropped by 18.7 percent compared with


November 2017

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the same period a year earlier. On the other hand, hardcovers, paperbacks, and audiobooks did not suffer a similar decline. In the same timeframe, e-books’ share of the total market fell to 17.6 percent from 21.7 percent. In addition, sales of hardcover books in 2016 outpaced e-books for the first time in five years. Don’t panic—books don’t look like they’re being replaced any time soon.

Maple Street Senior Community Center (717) 273-1048 710 Maple St., Lebanon Nov. 15, 11 a.m. – C  arpool to Country Fare for Holiday Luncheon Nov. 17, 11 a.m. – Women’s Awareness Luncheon (Preregister) Nov. 8, 15, 22, 29, 10:15 a.m. – Senior Yoga at Library Myerstown Senior Community Center (717) 866-6786 Myerstown Baptist Church, 59 Ramona Road, Myerstown Nov. 8, 7:45 a.m. – Breakfast Club at Country Fare Restaurant Nov. 16, noon – Th  anksgiving Luncheon at Light’s Victorian House Nov. 29, 7:45 a.m. – Breakfast Club at Heidelberg Restaurant Northern Lebanon Senior Community Center (717) 865-0944 335 N. Lancaster St., Jonestown Nov. 1 and 15, 10 a.m. – Walk around Park (Meet at Center) Nov. 16, 8:30 a.m. – Breakfast at Cedar Grill Nov. 24, 9:30 a.m. – C  arpool to Craft Show at Lebanon Expo Center Palmyra Senior Community Center (717) 838-8237 101 S. Railroad St., Palmyra Nov. 15, 10:30 a.m. – Legal Presentation: Planning Your Estate and Protecting Your Assets Nov. 22, 10:30 a.m. – Thanksgiving Special Meal and Entertainment Nov. 29, 10:30 a.m. – MindMatters Video Lecture: Be a Spring Chicken – Stay Young Forever Privately Owned Centers Senior Center of Lebanon Valley, Inc. (717) 274-3451 710 Maple St., Lebanon Washington Arms – (717) 274-1401 303 Chestnut St., Lebanon

Puzzle Page


Solutions for all puzzles can be found on page 20


1. Stinging insect 5. Role play 10. Equal 14. Toward shelter 15. Morning prayers 16. ____ Godiva 17. Bellow 18. Zodiac sign 19. Exhort 20. Aerie 21. Common contraction 22. Kinsman 24. Grotesque 26. Scare word 27. Explosive

30. Gr. letter 33. Looney Tunes coyote 37. Food, e.g. 39. Veneration 41. Actress Jillian 42. Succeed 43. Curtain 46. Genetic material 47. Raiment 48. Adder 49. Young bird 51. Footfalls 54. Yes 56. In what place 57. Water (Fr.)

59. Ancestry 61. Defects 63. Newspaper workers (abbr.) 64. Chafes 68. Lager 69. Inn 71. Foresaw 72. And others (Lat.) 73. Delete 74. Thought 75. Sunburns 76. Catches oneâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s breath 77. Curious

25. Precious metal 27. Salamanders 28. Moron 29. Shade 31. Euphoric 32. Be obliged 34. Scoop 35. Central 36. Maternal 38. Geological period 40. Before (poet.) 44. King of Judah 45. Gape 50. Pickle

52. Gems 53. Adage 55. Firstborn 58. Guide 60. Man and Wight 61. Gr. cheese 62. Skinny 63. Gr. letters 65. Change 66. Social affairs 67. Rock 68. Wager 70. Mineral

Down 1. Alert 2. Burn balm 3. Oceans 4. Vex 5. Spam medium 6. Thomas a Becket, e.g. 7. Elevator man 8. Dead heat 9. Result 10. Feisty 11. Above a viscount 12. Boundary 13. Cereal grass 23. Current

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November 2017


Deal Me In

The Best Bet without Using Brainpower is … By Mark Pilarski

Dear Mark: When it comes to making the best bet in a casino, your advice has been playing perfect strategy at either blackjack or video poker. Here’s my issue with that. I am not interested in learning a new skill in any game that I will probably play once a month, for only four hours at best. But I also don’t want to make stupid bets that have a high house edge. So, what is your recommendation for either a game or wager where I don’t have to use my wits and still get a fair shake against the house? – Cliff W. Fortunately, Cliff, the good news is there are alternative wagers so that you are not just limited to perfect play at blackjack or video poker when it comes to getting a “fair shake against the house.” The best bet in the entire casino where you don’t have to use your noggin is to walk up to a crap table and make a bet on the pass line, and double odds underneath. It gets even

better if you can get even higher multiple odds. For instance, if you have a $5 pass line bet and the point is 4, if you win, your pass line bet is paid at even money (1:1), bringing you $5 in winnings. Your pass line bet alone has a house edge of 1.4 percent. The pass line wager itself is somewhat competitive against perfect play at video poker or blackjack, but not equal to or better than. So, Cliff, let’s enhance the wager to give it equal footing. By taking double odds ($10), you are paid at true odds (2:1) on that portion of the bet, bringing you $20 on the win. The house edge is tied to the odds of the bet. At double odds the house edge drops to 0.6 percent, 10x odds to 0.2 percent, and 100x odds, all the way down to 0.02 percent.  Bellying up to a crap table and joining the euphoria of this fast-paced

game need not be intimidating, as long as you stick to a simplified strategy of betting the pass line and taking odds. Also, Cliff, there are two bets on a Baccarat game that offer a somewhat higher edge, and again, with no need to use your gray matter—especially because you don’t even have to know the rules as the hitting sequence is predetermined. The house advantage is either 1.17 percent when betting the bank hand or 1.36 percent with a player hand wager. Dear Mark: Are dealers allowed to give you advice with your hand while you’re playing blackjack? – Jack K. It pretty much depends, Jack, on where you are playing. All casinos have their own internal

rules and regulations. At the casinos where I either pitched cards or managed, giving advice was either forbidden, frowned upon, ignored, or they didn’t care, just as long as, when you peeked under your ace, you didn’t advance advice to the player. As to where you play, Jack, all you can do is ask to see if it is allowed. And as for trusting any advice you get from the dealer, well, that’s another story. Gambling Wisdom of the Month: “I have seen a pregnant woman stand at a 21 game, oblivious to labor pains, until we thought we were going to become midwives, and leave only when we summoned an ambulance.” – Harold S. Smith Sr., I Want to Quit Winners (1961) Mark Pilarski is a recognized authority on casino gambling, having survived 18 years in the casino trenches. Pilarski is the creator of the bestselling, awardwinning audio book series on casino gambling, Hooked on Winning. www.

You Think Your Meds Are Expensive? Sovaldi – This treatment for hepatitis C costs $75,600 for a 30-day supply. Harvoni – Another hepatitis C drug from the same manufacturer is $74,000 for 30 days.

Cinryze – This injectable medication is used to prevent swelling and pain caused by hereditary angioedema. It goes for $72,100 for a 30-day supply. H.P. Acthar – At $51,600 for a 30day supply, this medication is the

most expensive drug on a per-patient basis for Medicare. Daklinza – Another hepatitis C medication, this one goes for $50,700 for 30 days.

Puzzles shown on page 19

Puzzle Solutions

Medication can be expensive. If you’re annoyed at the cost of the prescription drugs you take, check out this list of the world’s most expensive medications (from the GoodRx website):


November 2017

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Such is Life

For All of Us Worriers

50plus LIFE’s editorial content just earned 4 awards!

Saralee Perel

My eyes are bleeding. I was at my yearly, routine eye exam when my doctor said, “There’s bleeding around your retina in your left eye.” I panicked and cried, “What causes that?” She didn’t know and referred me to a retina specialist. I had to have a complete physical, a ton of bloodwork, a heart ultrasound, an EKG, and an ultrasound of my carotid arteries. The first thing that was ruled out was hypertension. In constant worry, I thought, “What if it’s my heart? What if I need eye surgery?” Then I reached the bottom line: “What if I’m going to die?” At my next appointment, the bleeding had gotten worse in my left eye and had spread to my right eye as well. Times between visits took months. I spent a chunk of my life lost in darkness. I’ve spent so many chunks of my life uselessly ruminating that sometimes I think I’ve lived most of my life that way. I make up scenarios, even when nothing is wrong. I vividly envision my husband, Bob, in a car crash. I “see” him in the emergency room. I wonder who I’d call first. My friend is a “think positively” person. When I told her about my eye, she said, “Everything will be fine.” I said, “You don’t know that.” You see, that’s never a given. But blindness isn’t a given either. So, what is the answer when I don’t know what will happen? Hope. My bottom-line cure to

Bronze Award preoccupied thoughts is not thinking positively or negatively in the first place. I developed a new motto: “Just for today, no negative thoughts.” I must say that to myself 100 times a day. The negative thoughts still almost constantly come, but each time they do, I catch myself and say the motto. I say it not just about the big things, like fires, accidents, or bleeding eyes, but for all those streaming, pestering thoughts like, “My pants are a little tight.” And so, instead of picturing myself blind, I think, “I’m grateful for, right now, having such a loving husband who’s my best friend. I’m grateful for, right now, my beloved pets, a computer that is working, my home, the honor of communicating with my readers each month.” I may not have these things tomorrow, but I do now. And “now” is the only thing I truly know. As I write this column, I still don’t know why my eyes are bleeding. Yet, I’m choosing not to spend every day filled with “what if” thoughts. The time will go by between now and my next appointment, no matter how I think. If I get dreadful news, I’ll be devastated. But at least I won’t have lost yet another big chunk of my life. With my new motto, each day has been sparkling. Nationally syndicated, award-winning columnist Saralee Perel can be reached at or via her website:

“Pinups Honor 21st-Century Patriots” by Lori Van Ingen

Bronze Award “Still in the Game’” by Megan Joyce

Merit Award “Celebrating Central PA’s Many Cultures’” by Lori Van Ingen

Bronze Award “Suspense Author Rewrites Retirement” by Megan Joyce

Stories of ordinary men and women called to perform extraordinary military service. From 1999–2016, writer and World War II veteran Col. Robert D. Wilcox preserved the firsthand wartime experiences of more than 200 veterans through Salute to a Veteran, his monthly column featured in 50plus LIFE. Now, for the first time, 50 of those stories— selected by Wilcox himself—are available to own in this soft-cover book.

Simply complete and mail this form with your payment to the address below to order Salute to Our Veterans. On-Line Publishers • 3912 Abel Drive, Columbia, PA 17512 Name_ _______________________________________________________ Address_ ______________________________________________________ City_______________________________ State_ ____ Zip_ ______________ Phone_ _____________________ Email______________________________ Number of copies_ ______ (Please include $20.80 for each copy) Credit card #______________________________________ Exp. date________ Signature of cardholder_________________________________CVV #________

Or send a check made payable to On-Line Publishers, Inc. You can also order online at! 50plus LIFE p

November 2017


The Beauty in Nature

Sweet Gums and Bradford Pears Clyde McMillan-Gamber

Sweet gum and Bradford pear trees are planted on lawns and along streets in southeastern Pennsylvania, as elsewhere, for their attractive shapes, summer shade, colored leaves, and multitudes of white flowers on the pear trees in April. But autumn foliage is the greatest beauty on these trees. Sweet gum and Bradford pear leaves don’t start turning colors until late in October but continue well into November. Their brightly colored, glossy fall foliage glows in the lowslanting fall sunlight after most other autumn leaves have fallen from their twig moorings. And the strikingly colorful foliage of sweet gums and Bradford pears is beautiful against the green of coniferous needles and the gray of deciduous limbs and trunks. Sweet gums are Southern trees, sparingly established in scattered little thickets and woodland edges in the wild in southeastern Pennsylvania. Most sweet gums we see here were

Photo by Famartin

Photo by Bruce Marlin

Bradford pear

planted. But all trees of this species bear beautiful yellow, red, and maroon leaves, all colors on the same tree, during the latter part of October and into November. And they produce brown, pingpong-ball-sized, bristly seed balls that have several openings in each one that release many small, dark seeds that are eaten by seed-eating birds during fall and winter. Those birds include two kinds of

Sweet gum

chickadees and a variety of sparrows and finches, which add much more beauty and intrigue to the sweet gums. Bradford pears are domestic trees that are not native to North America. But this ornamental species is becoming ever more feral in this area. And by late October and well into November, their shiny leaves turn to maroon and bright red and are quite attractive clinging to their twigs. This type of pear also grows olive-

brown, berrylike fruits that are mature by autumn. Squirrels and mice eat many of those small fruits. And a variety of berry-eating birds—including American robins, eastern bluebirds, cedar waxwings, blue jays, and starlings—feast heartily on them as well. These animals add to the appeal of Bradford pears in autumn and winter. And the birds that digest the pulp of those fruits pass the seeds from them in their droppings as they fly here and there across the countryside. Baby trees sprout from some of those seeds in many scattered pastures, abandoned fields, and roadsides, even creating pure stands of feral Bradford pear trees that are especially lovely in November. This November, watch for these two species of trees on lawns, meadows, and roadsides. Their attractive autumn leaves—and the pretty, interesting critters on them to consume their fruits—brighten many a gray November day.

Volunteer Spotlight Retiree Supports Children’s Meal Program breakfast and lunch programs are unavailable to them. Packs are David Leh grew up in Sanatoga, Pennsylvania, outside of Pottstown. Leh worked 32 years in a supervisory position at a distributed to students on Thursday afternoons. plant making various PVC resins. While living in Douglassville, David Leh was an active member of the Daniel Boone Optimist Club, which served the After the plant closed in 2005, Leh worked at Cabot Supermetals in Boyertown and eventually at Arkema chemical youth and community of Douglassville. Leh served as president for a year and club secretary for many years. For 10 years, he was plant in Birdsboro, where he retired in 2015. chairman of their Community Days project. He and his wife, Mary, lived in Douglassville, Pennsylvania, for many years. In 2013 they moved to Arbor Gate Retirement Leh said the best part about volunteering is the good feeling he Community in Myerstown. gets from knowing that he is helping to make someone else’s life The Lehs became aware of RSVP at a 50plus EXPO and a little better with the hope they may, in turn, do something to decided to fill out an application. They were assigned to work help someone else. with the Power Packs Project. In October they began their third The Lehs have two children and four grandchildren, who live David Leh in the Pottstown and Reading areas. year with Power Packs. For further information about volunteer opportunities with The Power Packs Project is a nonprofit that aims to improve the mental and physical health of the children in the program by RSVP, please contact Margie Groy, development coordinator, at helping their parents provide nutritious meals over weekends when the school (717) 454-8647 or Do you know a 50+ volunteer who gives selflessly to others? Tell us what makes him or her so special and we will consider them for 50plus LIFE’s Volunteer Spotlight! Submissions should be 200 words or fewer and photos are encouraged. Email preferred to or mail nominations to 50plus LIFE, Volunteer Spotlight, 3912 Abel Drive, Columbia, PA 17512.


November 2017

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â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;The Day I Diedâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;: The One-Year Career of Vaughn Meader By Randal C. Hill On Nov. 22, 1963, when a Milwaukee cabbie picked up his passenger, the driver recognized 27year-old Vaughn Meader of the wildly successful comedy album The First Family. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Did you hear about Kennedy in Dallas?â&#x20AC;? asked the driver. Meader, figuring it was a joke setup, answered, â&#x20AC;&#x153;No, how does it go?â&#x20AC;? Then he heard the world-changing news on the taxiâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s radio. Born in Maine in 1936, Meader moved around often before settling in Brookline, Massachusetts. He finished Brookline High Scool in 1953 and joined the Army shortly afterward. While stationed in Germany, Meader found an interest in music and, with some fellow soldiers, formed a country-music band called the Rhine Rangers. Back in the States, he became a piano-playing nightclub performer in Greenwich Village. When John F. Kennedy became presidentâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;and a national presenceâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;Meader discovered his facility for crowd-pleasing JFK impersonations when he tossed out a few Kennedyesque lines onstage one night. Meader, who bore a passing resemblance to the young president, quickly mastered Kennedyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s gestures and facial expressions and moved onto the standup circuit with an amusing Kennedy-based shtick. On Oct. 22, 1962 (the same night as JFKâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s historic Cuban Missile Crisis speech), and before a live audience, Meader, three writer friends, and a small ensemble recorded The First Family. In the course of 17 skits, Meader offered spot-on send-ups of both John and Robert Kennedy while Naomi Brossart provided the voice of Jackie. The Cadence Records disc poked good-natured fun at JFKâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s PT-109

history, Kennedy athletics, White House kids, and even Jackieâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s breathy description of her White House redecoration. Released in November, in its first six weeks The First Family racked up sales of 6.5 million discsâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;the fastest-selling LP in history at that timeâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;and won the Grammy Album of the Year award for 1963. Meader became an overnight celebrity. While Jackie Kennedy disliked her portrayal, JFK enjoyed much of the album and gave several copies as Christmas gifts that year. He even opened a Democratic National Convention dinner with the line, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Vaughn Meader was busy tonight, so I came myself.â&#x20AC;? After the assassination, Cadence Records destroyed all unsold copies of The First Family to avoid being accused of â&#x20AC;&#x153;cashing inâ&#x20AC;? on the presidentâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s death. Meader never did another JFK impression and would sometimes refer to the Dallas tragedy as â&#x20AC;&#x153;the day I died.â&#x20AC;? He drifted around the country, unsuccessfully trying new routines before descending into depression and embracing a hazy world of booze and drugs. He found God in the late 1960s and returned to Maine, where he managed a pub in the small town of Hallowell. To further distance himself from his once-famous past, he reclaimed his given first name of Abbott (Vaughn was his middle name). Near the end of his life, Meader, a lifelong smoker, sold the movie rights to his story to pay his medical expenses for ongoing COPD treatments, though the movie was never made. On Oct. 29, 2004, Vaughn Meader died in obscurity at age 68, a mere footnote in 1960s entertainment history. Randal C. Hill is a rock â&#x20AC;&#x2122;nâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; roll historian who lives at the Oregon coast. He may be reached at

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November 2017


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50plus LIFE Lebanon County November 2017  
50plus LIFE Lebanon County November 2017  

50plus LIFE — formerly 50plus Senior News — is a monthly publication for and about Central Pennsylvania’s baby boomers and seniors, offering...