Prime Celebrating Midlife and Beyond
June 2012 FREE
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INside Life Le$$ons n Planting Tips n A Fishing Dog 10 Tips for Summer Canning n Faster S.S. Medical Decisions n Your Life in Memory n DVDs: Ghost Protocol n
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Features 10 you
Auburn’s Extension System offers 10 tips for canning this summer. By Kristin Woods & Janet Johnson
18 flower ladies Friendship and flowers combine to form a unique fellowship of hearts & hands. By Brenda Robertson Dennis
26 a garden like no other
Beaches & butterflies earn Callaway Gardens a weekend or week-long visit. By Andrea Gross
7 A Gracious Plenty — Carron Morrow 8 Fight Investment Fraud — Joe Borg 9 In Every Life — Arlene Morris 13 Social Security — Kylle’ McKinney 14 Yard n’ Garden — Ethel Dozier Boykin 15 Moving Free — Mirabai Holland 17 Off The Beaten Path — Niko Corley 22 MoneyWi$e — Alan Wallace 27 Pet World — Steve Dale 28 Medicare Q&A 32 Prime Diversions — Mark Glass
June 2012 www.primemontgomery.com | June 2012
Editor’s Note Turning 40 was a blip on my life’s radar. While my 50th birthday gave me slight pause, I heaved a sigh and refused to be concerned. After all, I had a child in high school and one in college. But turning 60, somehow, in some fashion, seems vastly different. “It’s the new 40,” my younger friends offer, encouragingly. Maybe so, but aching knees, laugh lines (ha!), and age -- ahem, wisdom -- spots say otherwise. Older, more realistic friends, those who have skipped by this milestone with seeming nonchalance, suggest I dismiss the upcoming date with a shrug. “What can you do about it?” they quip. That’s true, but I’ve never been one to waste a good opportunity to worry. To realize I’ve been around for six decades is startling, and the reality of turning 60 feels very different from the image in my head. Emotionally I feel the same as I did on those earlier birthdays. It’s what my then 87-year-old father must have meant many years ago when he told me he still felt 17 in his head (particularly impressive, since that was the age he ventured, all alone, to America.) Throughout most of his 80’s Dad was youthful, active and engaged, regardless of the chronological reality. It’s how he saw himself, and as a result, how others viewed him. Most of you, like me, have stepped across at least a handful of these 10-year thresholds. From my dad’s example, I recognize that keeping active is a big piece of the staying-vibrant-after-60 puzzle. What’s more, I’ve observed that aging is a journey, best traveled with close family and longtime friends. It’s just such journey a pair of Montgomery women started more than two decades ago, a journey that keeps them engaged, and in touch, as you’ll read in Flower Ladies by Brenda Robertson Dennis (page 18). Through a mutual love of flower arranging, Beth Edwards and Patsy Porter have enriched their own lives and created a lifetime of unforgettable memories for themselves as well as the countless others with whom they’ve shared their special gift. Got more squash than you can shake a spoon at? More strawberries than you can stir into your smoothie? Shed your intimidation and start canning and freezing those summertime fruits and vegetables! Don’t miss this month’s You CAN Can (page 10) to preserve summer’s scrumptious legacy for delicious fall and winter meals. If you’re thinking of staying close to home this summer, Callaway Gardens, just 90 miles away, is a wonderful day-trip or weekend getaway. From the Butterfly Garden, to the Tree Top Adventure, to the Birds of Prey show, writer Andrea Gross (A Garden Like No Other, page 24) details a list of attractions that will have you hopping in your car to visit this Georgia jewel this summer. A correction to last month’s piece on downsizing: One of the subjects in our story, Dr. Roger Duggar, was incorrectly listed as a retired physician, which understandably took Dr. Duggar and many of his longtime patients by surprise. As his wife Judy (and his long hours) can attest, Dr. Duggar is still actively practicing obstetrics and gynecology! Happy Father’s Day to all our Dads!
Sandra Polizos Editor 4
June 2012 | www.primemontgomery.com
Celebrating Midlife and Beyond
If you’re 50+ and on Facebook, become a fan of PRIME Montgomery!
June 2012,Volume 3, Issue 3 PUBLISHER Bob Corley, email@example.com EDITOR Sandra Polizos, firstname.lastname@example.org ART DIRECTOR Callie Corley, email@example.com WRITERS Brenda Robertson Dennis, Andrea Gross, Janet Johnson, Kristin Woods CONTRIBUTORS Ethel Boykin, Tina Calligas, Niko Corley, Steve Dale, Mark Glass, Mirabai Holland, Kylle’ McKinney, Arlene Morris, Carron Morrow, Alan Wallace PHOTOGRAPHERS Bob Corley, Irv Green SALES Bob Corley, 334-202-0114, firstname.lastname@example.org Prime Montgomery 7956 Vaughn Road, #144 Montgomery, AL 36116 • 334-202-0114 www.primemontgomery.com ISSN 2152-9035 Prime Montgomery is a publication of The Polizos/Corley Group, LLC. Original content is copyright 2012 by The Polizos/Corley Group, LLC., all rights reserved, with replication of any portion prohibited without written permission. Opinions expressed are those of contributing writer(s) and not necessarily those of The Polizos/ Corley Group, LLC. Prime Montgomery is published monthly except for the combined issue of December/January. Information in articles, departments, columns, and other content areas, as well as advertisements, does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation by Prime Montgomery magazine. Items relating to health, finances, and legal issues are not offered as substitutes for the advice and consultation of health, financial, and legal professionals. Consult properly degreed and licensed professionals when dealing with financial, medical, emotional, or legal matters. We accept no liability for errors or omissions, and are not responsible for advertiser claims.
News you can use
Get Moving! Daily physical exercise may reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, even in people over the age of 80, according to a study published in the online issue of Neurology®. The study showed that not only exercise but also activities such as cooking and cleaning are associated with a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s disease. These results provide support for efforts to encourage physical activity in even very old people who might not be able to participate in formal exercise but can still benefit from a more active lifestyle. The research found that people in the bottom 10% of daily physical activity were more than twice as likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease as people in the top 10% of daily activity. The study also showed that those people in the bottom 10% of intensity of physical activity were almost three times as likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease as people in the top 10% of intensity of physical activity. Eat More Fish Women who eat at least 3 servings of fish per week have a 33% reduced risk of developing some types of colon polyps according to a study by Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center investigators. The VICC researchers believe that omega-3 fats in fish may reduce inflammation in the body and help protect against the development of colon polyps. While eating more fish appeared to be beneficial, not all types of fish contain high levels of the protective omega-3 fatty acids. Tuna, salmon and sardines are high in omega-3 acids, while tilapia and catfish have low levels.
Melanoma Drug Nearly Doubles Survival Investigators from Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center (VICC) and 12 other centers have found that a new drug for patients with metastatic melanoma nearly doubled median overall survival with manageable side effects. More than half of patients who were treated with the drug vemurafenib (Zelboraf) responded to treatment and experienced an impressive median overall survival of nearly 16 months – far longer than the typical survival of just 6 - 10 months for most patients whose melanoma has spread beyond the initial tumor site. While the trials for vemurafenib have been positive to date, the great majority of patients eventually experience disease progression. (New England Journal of Medicine) Lower Death Rate for Coffee Drinkers? Older adults who drank coffee — caffeinated or decaffeinated — had a lower risk of death overall than others who did not drink coffee, according a study by researchers from the National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institutes of Health, and AARP. Coffee drinkers were less likely to die from heart disease, respiratory disease, stroke, injuries and accidents, diabetes, and infections, although the association was not seen for cancer. These results from a large study of older adults were observed after adjustment for the effects of other risk factors on mortality, such as smoking and alcohol consumption. Researchers caution, however, that they can't be sure whether these associations mean that drinking coffee actually makes people live longer. The researchers found that the association between coffee and reduction in risk of death increased with the amount of coffee consumed.
Relative to men and women who did not drink coffee, those who consumed three or more cups of coffee per day had approximately a 10 percent lower risk of death. Coffee drinking was not associated with cancer mortality among women, but there was a slight and only
marginally statistically significant association of heavier coffee intake with increased risk of cancer death among men. (New England Journal of Medicine) News for Parkinson’s Patients Certain antidepressants appear to decrease depression in people with Parkinson’s disease without worsening motor problems, according to a study published in an online issue of Neurology®. These results are exciting because depression is common in Parkinson’s. Older antidepressants are effective but have a lot of side effects. The drugs paroxetine – an antidepressant in the class called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) – and venlafaxine extended release –which is in the serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) class – were generally well tolerated and did not lead to any worsening in motor functioning. Loss Linked to Three-Fold Risk of Falling Hearing loss has been linked with a variety of medical, social and cognitive ills, including dementia. However, a new study led by a Johns Hopkins researcher suggests that hearing loss may also be a risk factor for another huge public health problem: falls. The finding could help researchers develop new ways to prevent falls, especially in the elderly, and their resulting injuries that generate billions in health care costs in the United States each year, by some estimates. The study found that people with a www.primemontgomery.com | June 2012
25-decibel hearing loss, classified as mild, were nearly three times more likely to have a history of falling. Every additional 10-decibels of hearing loss increased the chances of falling by 1.4 fold. This finding still held true, even when researchers accounted for other factors linked with falling, including age, sex, race, cardiovascular disease and vestibular function. Even excluding participants with moderate to severe hearing loss from the analysis didn’t change the results. Researchers say among the possible explanations for the link is that people who can’t hear well might not have good awareness of their overall environment, making tripping and falling more likely. Another reason hearing loss might increase the risk of falls is cognitive load, in which the brain is overwhelmed with demands on its limited resources.
Exercise Slows Muscle Wasting from Age and Heart Failure Exercise can counteract muscle breakdown, increase strength and reduce inflammation caused by aging and heart failure, according to new research in Circulation, an American Heart Association journal. The benefits for heart failure patients are similar to those for anyone who exercises: there's less muscle-wasting, and their bodies become conditioned to handle more exercise. Age of the patients didn't matter, either, researchers found. These findings offer a possible treatment to the muscle breakdown and wasting associated with heart failure and suggest that exercise is therapeutic even in elderly heart failure patients. The findings also suggest an avenue for drug development to slow muscle breakdown in
heart failure patients. Celiac Disease is Linked to Osteoporosis People with celiac disease are at risk for osteoporosis, according to physicians at Loyola University Health System (LUHS). Researchers believe that people with celiac disease may develop osteoporosis because their body poorly absorbs calcium and vitamin D, which are necessary for bone health. Celiac disease is an inherited autoimmune disorder that damages the small intestine and does not allow nutrients to properly absorb when foods containing gluten are ingested. Gluten is found in grains such as wheat, rye, barley and triticale. Patients with celiac disease must eliminate foods containing this protein or risk further damage and should discuss taking calcium, magnesium and vitamin D supplements with their physicians.
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a gracious plenty
atering and event planning for over 40 years have allowed me to experience many changes in trends, fashion, and etiquette. Some things have not changed, Carron Morrow however, and I thought it would be an appropriate time to share ideas for An Afternoon Tea. From the standpoint of cost, and especially discussing a wedding or shower, the Afternoon Tea is ideal for trimming the budget. Etiquette states that following lunch in the early afternoon, the basic Tea includes beverages, a salty item such as toasted pecans or homemade cheese straws (a wonderful southern tradition), a sweet item such as wedding cake, cupcakes or petit fours, and perhaps fresh fruit for those who cannot indulge in sugar.
An Afternoon Tea
You can, however, provide your guests with something closer to an English Tea. The perfect crowd pleaser includes: – dip (spinach or otherwise); – savory or meaty tea sandwich (homemade ham, chicken and turkey salad); – fresh fruit; – zesty marinated Italian vegetables; – buttermilk fried chicken nuggets (for the Southern gentlemen in attendance).
Carron Morrow owns Personal Touch Events, a 35-year-old Montgomery-based company specializing in corporate and personal catering and event planning. Contact Carron at 334-279-6279 or by e-mail at email@example.com, or visit www.onlinepersonaltouch. com. www.primemontgomery.com | June 2012
Defending yourself against
very day our citizens are bombarded with negative news about a continuing national recession and debt problems. Also, interest rates on savings are at an historic low. Here are seven basic tips to help senior Alabamians make more informed investment decisions and protect themselves from securities fraud during turbulent economic times.
Joseph P. Borg
1. Check out the person touting the investment. Alabama law requires most securities and the people selling them to be registered. Do this BEFORE YOU INVEST. 2. Beware of high-pressure tactics. Say “no” to any person who presses you to make an immediate investment decision. Take time to do your own research and understand a financial product offer before you invest. 3. Don’t be a “courtesy victim.” Con artists will not hesitate to exploit the good manners of a potential victim. When a stranger asks for your money, you should proceed with the utmost caution.You are under no obligation to stay on the telephone with a stranger or allow them in your home. If you are lonely and in need of companionship, don’t make the mistake of seeking it from someone whose real interest may be to get their hands on your money.
6. Report suspected investment fraud or financial abuse immediately. Despite any embarrassment or fear you may feel, immediately call the Alabama Securities Commission, Enforcement Division (contact information below). 7. Beware of “reload” scams. To recoup their losses, victims sometimes invest in another scheme (a “reload”) in which the con artist promises to make good the original loss and may offer new, higher returns. Often, the result is only more losses. Joe Borg is Director of the Alabama Securities Commission, promoting financial literacy through presentations, free information and access to financial literacy and educational material. Call for a FREE “Safe & Wise Investing Kit”, call 1-800-222-1253, or visit the website http://www.asc.alabama.gov/.View personal finance and investor educational materials and read about those caught and punished for cheating Alabamians. If you have questions, concerns or complaints about financial products, contact the ASC at the website above, or call or e-mail Dan Lord, Education and Public Affairs Manager, 334-353-4858, firstname.lastname@example.org (or at the toll-free number above).The ASC is located at 401 Adams St., Montgomery. (This article is made possible by a generous grant from the Investor Protection Trust, www.investorprotection.org.)
I LOVE IT HERE. BUT THE KIDS DON’T NEED TO KNOW THAT.
4. Watch out for salespeople who prey on your fears. Recent news concerning long term recession and national debt can make you afraid of running out of money. Swindlers commonly pitch their schemes as a way to eliminate your financial fears for the future. 5. Monitor your investments. Insist on regular written reports/statements and look for signs of excessive or unauthorized trading of your accounts. 8
June 2012 | www.primemontgomery.com
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in every life
The Power of Memory Part 2
uilding on last month’s topic of reminiscence, this column will focus on how to encourage sharing of memories by those who have limited memory. First of all, memory changes can occur for many reasons, including n illness; n dehydration; n malnutrition; n adverse effects from medicine; Arlene Morris n alcohol or drugs; n sensory overload/deprivation; n response to stressful situations such as loss/grieving These memory changes may be mild, short-term (e.g. “Why did I come into this room?”), or changes can occur suddenly with more severe hyperactive or hypoactive delirium, during which the person’s reality is substantively altered. Delirium requires medical intervention. The goal is prompt recognition of changes, identification and elimination of any causative
factor(s) while providing support for body functions in order to promote return of ability to think and remember. However, vascular changes (cerebrovascular accident--“CVA” or “stroke”) or other factors that cause insufficient blood flow/ delivery of oxygen/functioning of the brain, may or may not be reversible. In contrast, changes in thinking and memory associated with dementia usually progress slowly. Alzheimer’s disease accounts for 50 to 70% of dementias, characterized by initial decrease in short term memory while long term memory remains intact (i.e., can’t recall breakfast. but can tell stories about early adulthood). Medications may slow disease progression, but currently there is no cure to reverse memory loss. Increasingly, caregivers must compensate for changes in the person’s ability to recall and make judgments to fulfill activities of daily living. Respect for and awareness of the abilities and life history of a person experiencing dementia can dramatically influence interactions with caregivers. Establishing a sense of security can promote calm; connecting with the person in such a way to acknowledge the person’s need to be known and accepted, make choices, and share meaningful memories can increase quality of life. Memories can be stimulated by sights, sounds, tastes, smells, or touch during the stage of dementia in which meaning of words is uncertain. For example, the person with various levels of decline in thinking may share a song or dance with a caregiver who is aware of past music preferences; or, music from the person’s past religious or cultural experiences can initiate powerful memories of spiritual or family connections. Food cooking, fragrant plants, perfume or aftershave can stimulate awareness and interactions by prompting recollection of past life events.Viewing pictures, videos, scrapbooks, or items from the past can foster recall of personal identity, work, or family connections. Touch, such as petting an animal or feeling the lacy texture of a wedding dress, or holding another’s hand, can help the person connect or interact. Engaging in purposeful activities such as folding socks or washcloths can prompt recall of familiar movements and a sense of accomplishment/dignity. Awareness of the person’s past life experiences and focusing on the individual’s response to different sensory stimuli can lead to sharing of memories that otherwise would not be possible. Arlene H. Morris is Professor of Nursing at Auburn Montgomery’s School of Nursing. She can be reached at email@example.com.
www.primemontgomery.com | June 2012
“What to do with 20 pounds of squash can be quite a challenge.”
You Can Can By Kristin Woods and Janet Johnson Food Safety, Preparation and Preservation Regional Extension Agents, Alabama Cooperative Extension System
June 2012 | www.primemontgomery.com
“Blanching stops the enzymes from spoiling food in the freezer.”
hese days it seems everyone wants to buy fresh, locally grown produce, but that means an abundance of squash in June and peas in August. What to do with 20 pounds of squash can be quite a challenge. More and more people are trying food preservation as a way to enjoy high quality, nutritious produce year round. Don’t be afraid to try it – the taste of fresh, locally grown produce is always better than what you buy in the grocery store, even when canned, frozen, or dried. Here are some answers to questions we get in our office every year: 1. I’m afraid to use a pressure canner. Don’t they explode? Pressure canners are designed with an overpressure plug in the lid. If too much pressure builds up inside the canner, the plug will come out of the lid and relieve the pressure. 2. Why do vegetables need to be blanched before freezing them? Vegetables have enzymes that cause ripening and eventually spoilage. Blanching stops the enzymes from spoiling food in the freezer. Be careful to use the correct blanching time
- under blanching can actually accelerate the enzymatic process and make food spoil more quickly. Over blanching can make vegetables soft. 3. What is blanching? Heating or scalding the vegetables in boiling water or steam for a short period of time to deactivate spoilage-causing enzymes. 4. What is freezer burn? It is dehydration or drying that occurs on the surface of a frozen product if it is improperly wrapped. The food is safe to eat but may have an off flavor or texture. To prevent freezer burn, the package must be free of air and sealed airtight. 5. Can Splenda® (Sucralose) be used in preserving food? Granular Splenda® does not provide preservative properties like sugar. For jams and jellies, or fruit spreads, you could use Splenda® as the optional sweetener in a jam or jelly made with a no-sugar needed pectin, such as Mrs. Wages™ Lite Home Jell® Fruit Pectin, Ball® No-Sugar Needed Pectin or Sure-Jell® for Less or No-Sugar-Needed Recipes. With these low-methoxyl pectins, no sugar is required at all. Sugar substitutes can be added
“Salt is used for flavor only and is not necessary for safe processing.” www.primemontgomery.com | June 2012
as desired simply for flavor. The package inserts with these pectins give instructions on when to add the sugar substitutes (usually after all the cooking, right before filling the jars). Do not try to substitute Splenda® for the required sugar in recipes calling for “regular” liquid and powdered pectins. 6. Do I need to process my jars in a water bath or pressure canner? Many recipes passed down through the years or found in older cookbooks do not include instructions for processing. The foods are usually canned by the open kettle method, sealed and stored. Foods prepared this way can be deadly — particularly low acid foods. To minimize the risk of food spoilage and food-borne illness, all high acid foods should be processed in a water bath canner or pressure canner and all low acid foods in a pressure canner. 7. Is it safe to can without salt? Yes. Salt is used for flavor only and is not necessary for safe processing. 8. Can two layers of jars be processed in a canner at one time? Yes, two layers can be processed at one time, in either the boiling water bath or pressure canner. Place a small wire rack between the layers so water or steam will circulate around each jar. Make certain that the water covers 12 June 2012 | www.primemontgomery.com
the tops of all jars by 1 inch in a boiling water bath canner. The pressure canner should have 2 to 3 inches of water in the bottom. 9. What is the dark film on the underside of my lids? Natural compounds in some foods, particularly acids, corrode metal and make a dark deposit on the underside of jar lids. This deposit on lids of sealed, properly processed canned foods is harmless. 10. Do I need to get my pressure canner tested? If you have a dial gauge pressure canner, you should have the gauge tested once per year to ensure adequate processing. If you have a dial or jiggler-type pressure canner, you should inspect the gaskets, overpressure plug, petcock valve, and closures.Your pressure canner can be tested or inspected at any Extension office free of charge. Resources National Center for Home Food Preservation http://nchfp.uga.edu/ County Extension Office http://www.aces.edu/directory/
Faster Medical Decisions for the Disabled
n April, Social Security announced 52 new Compassionate Allowances conditions to the growing list of severe medical conditions that qualify for expedited medical decisions. The new conditions include many neurological disorders, cancers, and rare diseases. The Compassionate Allowances initiative is a way of quickly identifying diseases and other medical conditions that invariably qualify as “disabled” based on minimal medical information. Kylle’ McKinney Compassionate Allowances allow Social Security to quickly identify the most obviously disabled individuals for allowances based on objective medical information that we can obtain quickly. The announcement of 52 new conditions, effective in August, will increase the total number of Compassionate Allowances conditions to 165. That list continues to grow as Social Security, the National Institutes of Health, and a number of patient organizations help identify new conditions that clearly warrant quick approvals. “Social Security will continue to work with the medical community and patient organizations to add more conditions,” Commissioner Astrue said. “With our Compassionate
The topics at the public hearings on Compassionate Allowances were rare diseases, cancers, traumatic brain injury (TBI) and stroke, early-onset Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, schizophrenia, cardiovascular disease and multiple organ transplants, and autoimmune diseases. Allowances program, we quickly approved disability benefits for nearly 61,000 people with severe disabilities in the past fiscal year, and nearly 173,000 applications since the program began.” Social Security develops the list of Compassionate Allowances conditions from information received at public outreach hearings, comments received from the disability community, counsel of medical and scientific experts, and research with the National Institutes of Health. Also, we consider which conditions are most likely to meet our definition of disability. For more information on the Compassionate Allowances initiative, please visit www.socialsecurity.gov/compassionateallowances. Kylle’ McKinney, SSA Public Affairs Specialist, can be reached in Montgomery at 866-593-0914, ext. 26265, or by e-mail at kylle. firstname.lastname@example.org.
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yard ‘n garden
Simple Rules of Planting W
hen it’s time to plant you’ll need several supplies to do the job: n a soil mix that contains mushroom compost, or some organic material; n water polymers/crystals (they expand, hold moisture and last several years in the soil); n pine straw or mulch to protect the roots from sun and hold in moisEthel Dozier Boykin ture; n shovel with a sharp point to make the digging easier. A good rule of thumb is have a $5.00 hole for a $1.00 plant, which means what you don’t see (underground) makes a big difference in the performance of the plant. Start by making the hole twice the width of the pot the plant is in. The depth should be the same as the height of pot. Take half of the soil from the hole and mix it with your organic mixture. Turn the pot over, slide the plant out, and center it in the hole spreading the roots out evenly. If the root ball is tight and bound together you’ll need to pull it apart. Not doing so will cause the roots to go around in a circle and your plant will not grow properly.You may need a knife to cut the roots apart. If they are matted on the bottom cut off a half inch or so to allow new roots to form. Place a few shovels full of your soil mix on the plant and lightly water. Sprinkle water crystals in the hole, add more soil, water again, and continue to ground level. This layering keeps air pockets from forming. Mulch at least four inches around to hold in moisture and keep the sun from baking the roots. For the first two weeks new roots are forming, so water every day. Adding a a root stimulator will 14
June 2012 | www.primemontgomery.com
promote good root growth and provide additional nutrients. This is most often used when transplanting, but will benefit new plantings, too. Root stimulator is a liquid and can be watered in any time after planting. Always remove the tags from plants. They look awful blowing in the breeze, but more importantly, they will girdle stems, restrain growth of the limb they are attached to, and become imbedded. It’s enjoyable to watch what we plant grow over the years and add to our landscape pleasure. It is not enjoyable when you plant larger trees or shrubs and pull your back out. For anything you cannot pick up, let someone else plant it, such as a landscape installer. They have the equipment and manpower to handle large plants, and on Monday you will still be able to walk. With summer fast approaching, the heat is on the way. New plants need more water during their first summer. Take a bucket full of water or the hose to new plants and give them extra water during this establishment time. After the first month it will not hurt to water in some liquid plant food. Next spring, fertilize as you do any other plants, as your new plants will be established and on the way to years of enjoyment. For a fun exercise, photograph a yardstick and next to the plant when you first plant it, then repeat this a year later. Seeing growth is amazing. Give yourself a pat on the back for a job well done. Ethel Dozier Boykin, a Montgomery native, owns Art in the Garden, a landscape design and consulting company in the Capital City. Contact her at 334-3955949, or by email at email@example.com.
moving free ® with mirabai
Scary Obesity Study F Mirabai Holland
itness=Longevity. We all know that. But a scary new obesity study* proves we’re ignoring the wake-up call. Why will there be a 33% increase in obesity and a 130% increase in severe obesity in the next 20 years? There’s an atmosphere of over indulgence created by the people who want to sell us stuff. More is better. Bigger is a sign of your success. It’s UPSCALE and we’re taking it quite literally. Hey! I like stuff, but it’s gone too far. And it’s gotten
uncomfortable. Between the human cost in quality of life and the astronomical predictions for health care costs, a realistic approach to sustainable wellness has to be the next trend. It’s like global warming. If we don’t do something about it, we’re done for. The Institute of Medicine recognizes this cultural trend and has come up with some pretty stiff recommendations for government, corporations and individuals. They want to establish guidelines for healthy meals in schools, restaurants and public events. They want corporations to start marketing healthier food to children, and they
Can I Do Tai Chi If I Have: •Parkinson’s or MS? •Arthritis/Fibromyalgia? •Knee, hip, or back problems? •Diabetes/neuropathy? •Cardiovascular problems? •Poor balance, weak muscles?
YES! YO U C A N ! 832-1907
www.taoist.org Taoist Tai Chi Society of the USA, Alabama Branch
Some things never change, we just continue to ignore them, such as diet and exercise.These remain the key to good health and longevity.
want us all to exercise daily. Exercise more, sure. Eat healthier, a no brainer. But to actually find the sustainable way to keep doing it and then to instill the people you love to do it too, goes much deeper. Here are a couple of things you can start with. Fresh produce, organic if you can afford it. It can get pricey. Read labels. I remember going to the grocery store with my mom a few years before she died. She thought of herself as a gourmet, but in the store, I realized she never read labels. She ate stuff that had high sugar, fat and preservatives in it. I said “Hey, Ma, take a look at this tomato sauce you just put in your cart. It’s got a lot of sugar in it. Empty calories for what? Haven’t you noticed that when you eat stuff with sugar you just want more and more of it?” Break the chain of craving. To her credit, she listened and changed about half the things she was eating. Better late than never! Then there’s exercise. If you are going to exercise, be active in a way that brings some joy into your life. Find a few physical activities that you can do consistently. Just mix it up, walk with a friend and gossip, play a game, dance to music you like, and keep on doing it for the rest of your life. Mirabai Holland M.F.A. is a leading authority in the Health & Fitness industry and a public health activist specializing in preventive and rehabilitative exercise. Her Moving Free® approach to exercise is designed to provide a movement experience so pleasant it doesn't feel like work (www.mirabaiholland.com). *http://www.ajpmonline.org/webfiles/images/journals/amepre/ AMEPRE_33853-stamped2.pdf www.primemontgomery.com | June 2012 15
June 2012 | www.primemontgomery.com
off the beaten path
The Shad Wrangler L
abs were bred with an incredible retrieving instinct. Ask most any outdoorsman or dog owner what Labs retrieve and they’ll likely tell you birds. “Ducks, actually,” they’ll quip, and one in four, the real know-it-alls, will reply “waterfowl” with a smirk. Both are reasonable answers but neither is correct. Labs, or Labrador Retrievers, named for the Isle of Labrador where the breed was begun, were originally bred to retrieve NIko Corley floundering fish from fishermen’s nets. Their hardiness, intelligence, hunting instinct and strong desire to please only later led their owners to train them to retrieve birds. The Labrador Retriever’s early breeders knew they had something special, but they never could have guessed the breed would grow to become the most popular dog breed in the U.S. We recently embarked on our own breeding program with our female Chocolate Lab, using a highly scientific method of sire selection dubbed “the fence was too high to keep any other dog out.” Other dog owners nationwide have also accidentally utilized this method of animal husbandry with incredibly high rates of success. Fast forward nine weeks and our Bella became the mother of a dozen pups, “German Chocolates” we called them for the sire, a German Shorthaired Pointer, and the dam, our Chocolate Lab. All 12 pups survived puppyhood and all but one left our home by the eighth week. Enter Coco, our first German Chocolate. At six months Coco had the lean, lanky body of her sire and his long, floppy ears. Her dark brown coat was darker than her mother’s and highlighted by a large white liver-flecked starburst on her chest. If she had inherited her father’s body, she got her mother’s personality. Energetic, enthusiastic, born to retrieve and a natural swimmer, Coco was a good student who took to training easily and was able to shake off correction and discipline in stride just like her Lab mother. My wife and I often took the girls out to the river, pulling our boat up on sandbars to swim and sun. One trip I decided to blend our casual boating with a fishing trip, and so loaded up dogs and rods and off we went. Once the boat was in the water we stopped before heading out onto the main river channel for me to catch a few shad for bait. Throwing a cast net off the bow of a boat with two 60-pound dogs running around is no easy task. With eight paws and two feet on the front deck,
there is always a foot or a paw tangled in the net or wrapped around the main line. It quickly became clear that casting a net, much less catching any shad, would take patience and finesse. It was easy to spot the shad by the ripples they made across the water’s surface, and I planned my throws carefully, tracking their movement and throwing the net where I expected them to be. However, I wasn’t the only one planning my attack on the shad. I rotated back with the net and then swung forward, the net rolling off my right shoulder and through my fingers smoothly, forming a perfect circle before entering the water above a dozen unsuspecting shad. As soon as the net hit the water Coco sprung forward off the bow, feet tucked tight to her body to reduce drag, landing just a few feet to the right of the net. I nearly lost my balance between handling the net and doubling over with laughter. Coco followed the net intently as I pulled it toward the boat. I retrieved the net and my dog, but not before she swam a couple laps around the boat. I emptied the net into the live well, spotted another school of shad, and surprisingly caught Coco intently eying the same school from my side. I tossed the net toward the school, immediately regretting it. As before, Coco took off like a rocket for the net. My wife and I laughed hysterically as Coco swam intently for the net and the school of shad. She did another lap around the boat and we pulled her back in. We had almost enough shad to fish for the afternoon but I wanted another dozen or so to fill the live well. I scanned the slough for any top ripples indicating shad were just beneath the surface and spotted a group off the port bow. Coco too, was eying the school. I tossed the net and she sprang off the bow again, but my aim was off this time. I retrieved the empty net as I watched Coco cutting a wake behind a school of startled shad, moving them closer and closer toward the boat. She herded them close enough off the starboard bow for me to toss the net once more, and I pulled in at least two dozen big gizzard shad with that throw. Had she not repeated the feat I would have thought it pure chance. I retrieved my retriever and Sally and I each had a good laugh at our “shad wrangler.” I smiled, patted Coco on the head, and told her that her ancestors would be proud. Niko Corley spends his free time hunting, fishing and enjoying other outdoor activities. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @ cootfootoutfitters.
www.primemontgomery.com | June 2012
June 2012 | www.primemontgomery.com
A Journey in Friendship
By Brenda Robertson Dennis Photos by Bob Corley
any people find ways to use their talents to give back to others. One group of very special ladies in the River Region has made giving back not only an art form, but a source of unexpected fellowship. Beth Edwards and Patsy Smith have, for many years, been part of an unofficial group of women who share their talent for flower arranging with others. They don’t do it for money, but to share their love with those they love on their special days. It started about two decades ago, with the core group having how grown to more than 20 women - the Flower Ladies - who come when they are called. For Beth Edwards, it was her mother who first gave her an appreciation for church altar flowers. “When I was real young growing up in Selma,” she says, “there were two ladies in our church that did it every Sunday from their yard, and mother would just go on and on about how beautiful they were. I got to where I would appreciate and notice them every Sunday. One time they had cotton boles, because sometimes in the year there were no flowers, so they’d used greenery or whatever they could come across.” Patsy Smith, who moved from Montgomery to Birmingham with her husband several years ago, remembers always loving the art of flower arranging. “As is typical of a southern woman, I have loved gardening and flowers for as long as I can remember,” she says. “I love pulling blooms from the yard into my house.Yard flowers are my favorites for arrangements even now.” Smith first helped arrange flowers as part
of the flower committee at Morningview Baptist Church. She and Edwards where in the same Sunday school class, and their friendship clicked from the start. One day they were walking and discussing flowers. Their girls were young, and in the course of their walk they promised each other they would do the flowers for their childrens’ weddings. Friends liked the idea, and wanted to join in the effort. “I think the first big wedding we all did was for Rebecca Treadwell, daughter of Cheryl and Terry Treadwell,” says Smith. “It grew from there; from church ladies doing flowers for each other’s children.” Smith had the opportunity to keep her promise when she served as a flower lady when Edwards’ daughters were married. Edwards returned the favor when Smith’s son was married in Birmingham. For both women, the pleasure of working with flowers, and the Flower Ladies, is obvious. “Getting to enjoy and appreciate God’s artistry in the lovely blooms brings joy,” says Smith, “as well as spending the day with friends giving this labor of love to another special friend on a day that is very important to them.” Having been the recipient of those efforts, Smith knows its value, and the special feeling it brings. “I can tell you it is overwhelming to know that you are being loved and cared for in that way,” she said. “While you are about other business of the wedding day, and when you finally get to see the finished work, it truly takes you to your knees in thanksgiving. The Flower Ladies are talented women who know how to get the job done.”
www.primemontgomery.com | June 2012
(Top) For this bridal shower, each room received a distinctive arrangement. (Below) Beth Edwards unloading the tools of the Flower Ladies’ trade.
June 2012 | www.primemontgomery.com
Arranging flowers for a special occasion involves a lot of work long long before the actual event -- planning, picking, cutting, buying and flower conditioning. On the day of the event they bring food and drinks, or the honoree supplies the food and it becomes a working party. “I remember that once Teresa Stanley brought up a crock pot of soup to Wynlakes and it was just absolutely perfect for that winter day,” recalls Smith. “It’s just fun being with other creative, Godly women that you love working with to take care of your friend being honored that day.” Depending on where an event is located, as many as 20 flower ladies can be present, ranging in age from mid-forties to upper sixties. When they come together, however, these is no age gap. “Most of us have all done flowers within our churches,” Smith says. “A lot of times we don’t see each other during the year except when we do flowers. We have this little camaraderie. I’ve met several ladies I would not know unless I was doing flowers.” The group especially enjoys traveling out of town together, the overnight trip providing more fellowship time as well as special memories. “Once we traveled to Selma to help with another friend’s wedding reception for her daughter,” Smith recalled. “Beth (Edwards) had used candle lighted topiary trees in cement buckets at her own daughter Mallory’s reception, and Gladys Elliott had admired them. So Beth loaded them up and we drove them to Selma for the big event. The Flower Ladies aim to please!” Edwards recalls another out-oftown trip. “When we traveled to Atlanta to do a rehearsal dinner for the son of one of the flower ladies, we arrived at the Ritz Carlton in a caravan loaded down with buckets of flowers, mechanics for arranging the flowers, and huge containers. The bellmen loaded them onto the brass luggage carts and took them to an empty room near the banquet room for the evening. I'm sure,” she recalls, laughing, “most floral designers coming to the Ritz arrive with flowers already designed and ready to be placed.”
(Top) Edwards puts the finishing touches on the bridal shower centerpiece. (Below) With a lot of work and an eye for detail, floral art will eventually emerge from this collection of water-filled buckets overflowing with flowers and greenery.
On another occasion they drove a commercial van to Jackson, Mississippi. “Many friends arrived days early to help with the rehearsal dinner,” says Edwards. “They sat in the lobby with church friends and folded napkins, cut greenery around the property and enjoyed the fellowship for four days.” Perhaps the best thing about having developed this group of ladies that perform such a labor of love, is being able to pass it on to the next generation. “My daughters have gotten involved now too,” says Edwards, who admits the work is very physical and taxing, but that training the next generation of daughters and daughters-in-law is equally rewarding. Being a Flower Lady, says Smith, has been a journey in friendship. One thing is certain. This powerful network of women, and the fellowship they have shared, will serve as an amazing legacy to the generations that joyfully walk in their footsteps. www.primemontgomery.com | June 2012
Co$tly Le$$on$ L
ike everybody, I have made my share of financial mistakes, and I’ve also taken note on occasion when others make them. While errors are almost always painful to some degree, the experience is not completely wasted if we learn a lesson (or two) from what went wrong. This month I will tell you about some mistakes with financial consequences and the lessons they taught, all from Alan Wallace my personal experience (although I was not always at fault). However, this month’s list is not comprehensive, because there isn’t enough space in the entire issue to cover all of the financial errors I have made or observed first hand. Often a do-it-yourself solution is a pretty good way to save money. When I was a teenage driver, my brother (three years older than me) was working temporarily in an auto parts shop where he had learned a thing or two about auto repair. I was driving a VW Beetle at the time and for Christmas he had bought the parts to tune it up for me (plugs, points, and condenser) and was going to provide the labor, with minimal assistance from me. In the process, I would learn a thing or two about cars that would be helpful. Working in the yard at my parents home in rural Henry County, we started by removing the spark plugs. Regrettably, one of them would not come out. The base of the plug broke off in the cylinder head when my brother tried to turn it with his socket wrench. An experienced friend suggested that we try a tool he called an “easy out,” technically known as a bolt extractor. We bought one (or a set) and success eluded us. Ultimately, my Dad wound up paying to have the car towed to a mechanic, paid to have the broken spark plug replaced, and paid them to install my brother’s new parts. The lesson: Do-it-yourself only saves money if you know what you are doing well enough to stay out of trouble. A similar case that I read about involved a guy changing his own oil and filter. A couple of days later his transmission seized up because he had really drained his transmission fluid, thinking that it was his crankcase. His lesson was no doubt even more expensive than my family’s. The second experience involved noone but me. I was shopping for some clothes, probably not much later than the “free tune up” experience above, at a men’s store that I had been to once or twice before. The owner passed by and asked the salesman helping me what size I was. When he found out he said, “Have I got a deal for you.” The deal was a suit in my size that had been on his rack for longer than it should have been. There was nothing wrong with the suit. It was from good fabric and well-made. He of22
June 2012 | www.primemontgomery.com
fered to sell it to me for a price that was so low, that, well, I just could not refuse. The problem was, even though it was a good deal, I did not really like the color or the style. Before I finally got rid of that suit, I think that I forced myself to wear it in public one time. Such a bargain! The lesson: No price is a bargain for something that you do not need, do not want, and will not use. The third and final mistake is one that, to my horror, I have made a number of times. Sometimes the mistake had to do with paying a bill, sometimes with buying an item that I needed or wanted, and sometimes simply with running an errand. The common thread was that I missed a deadline. I experienced a failure in clock or calendar management. The consequences over my lifetime probably run to a few hundred dollars because I missed a deadline and paid a late fee or lost the benefit of a coupon, sale price or gift certificate.Very little in life makes me want to kick myself more than throwing money away or leaving money on the table like that, and you may feel the same. The lesson: Put a system in place to remind you of when things have to be done. The best time to set reminders is when you first learn of the deadline. The next best time is every time you think of it after that, unless you have already set the reminder. Thank heaven for smart phones and their alarms! So, if you have never had any experience like the ones I mentioned above, be grateful. But I bet you have some others that have taught you a lesson or two. My advice is to try to avoid such mistakes, always learn from your errors when you recognize them, and try to learn from others’ failures so that you do not have to make those same mistakes to learn the lessons they teach. Alan Wallace, CFA, ChFC, CLU is a Senior Financial Advisor for Ronald Blue & Co.’s Montgomery office, 334-270-5960, alan. email@example.com
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(334) 239-0655 www.boucou.net
Farmers Markets: Open For Business
inter is a distant memory (even though mild, it was still winter). Then Spring crept in without fanfare and with little notice but for rampant allergies and yellow, pollen-coated vehicles. Now, Summer is upon us, and itâ€™s time to head to a local farmers market and reap the bounty our area farmers have been cultivating.
Eastchase Farmers Market, 7274 Fairview Farmers Market, 60 W. Eastchase Parkway. Saturday 7 am - noon Fairview Ave. All week, 8 am - 5 pm Prattville Farmers Market, 151 N. Memorial Dr., Tuesday 3 - 6 pm, Saturday 7 - 11 am. (begins June 2)
Montgomery Farmers Market, 655 Federal Dr., All week. 7 am - 5 pm.
McQueen Smith Road Farmers Market, Prattville, Thursday 3 - 6 pm (begins June 7)
Montgomery Curb Market, 1004 Madison Ave. Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, 4 am - 2 pm Millbrook Farmers Market, Main St. Millbrook. All week. 3 - 6 pm. www.primemontgomery.com | June 2012
A Garden Like No Other By Andrea Gross Photos by Irv Green unless otherwise noted
take one look at the Tree Top Adventure—an activity that will have me walking across swinging bridges and soaring along a zip-line—and almost wimp out. But there's a boy who looks to be about 8 in front of me and a woman who says she's 80 behind me. Trapped between 8 and 80, I decide to go forward. Soon I’m flying through the air, 30 feet above the forest floor. Below me are the 13,000 acres that comprise Georgia’s Callaway Gardens, an oasis with resort amenities and a mission that speaks to my heart. We were at Callaway Gardens for two days before we 24
June 2012 | www.primemontgomery.com
slowed down enough to learn its story. First we had to explore its other attractions: • Robin Lake, which is surrounded by the world’s largest manmade beach; • the Butterfly Center, where hundreds of winged creatures flutter soundlessly in one of the nation’s largest glass-enclosed tropical butterfly conservatories; • the vegetable garden that serves as the southern setting for the PBS television show, The Victory Garden; • the Azalea Bowl, which in the spring blazes with 40 acres of brilliantly colored foliage;
• the Horticultural Center, a five-acre octagonal greenhouse filled with native and exotic plants; • the Birds of Prey Show, held in an outdoor amphitheater where huge raptors soar above the spectators. On the third day, we had a true Southern breakfast of grits, spicy sausage, eggs and melt-in-your-mouth cathead biscuits (so named because they’re the size of a cat’s head) smothered with Muscadine jam. Then we debated our options. Golf? Tennis? Or maybe we should work off the calories by renting a bike. Callaway Gardens has nearly 20 miles of trails, ranging from a half-mile creek-side trail through the woods to a 10-mile paved path that leads to most of the attractions. We chose the latter. Finally, we went over to the aptly named Discovery Center. That’s when we learned that we weren’t at an ordinary resort, but at a place where the main goal is conservation. Tourists were welcomed to the gardens almost as an afterthought. Back in the late 1930s newly-retired mill owner Cason Callaway realized he needed a hobby. He bought some depleted cotton fields and set about nursing them back to productivity. Over the years, with the help of his wife,Virginia, the old fields blossomed into wonderful woodland gardens that Virginia wanted to share with family, friends and eventually the public. Cason agreed on one condition. All resort facilities would have to be built in a way that respected and conserved the natural environment. It hasn’t been easy, or cheap. For example, when it became necessary to build a parking lot near the Discovery Center, Cason insisted that they do so without harming the trees. To that end, he first ran tests to see if the asphalt would harm the tree roots. Then he had a landscape architect design a serpentine space that would weave through the trees so that (1) he wouldn’t have to cut them down and (2) they would provide shade for the parked cars. The same principle has been applied to the newest venture, building homes suitable for seasonal rentals or year-round living. All homes must meet stringent environmental guidelines, a requirement that sometimes results in higher costs as well as more time spent educating potential buyers. But much to the pride of the Foundation that runs Callaway Gardens, their builder was awarded the Southface www.primemontgomery.com | June 2012
Franklin D. Roosevelt’s “Little White House”
Energy Institute’s highest award for environmental stewardship. Thus, Calloway Gardens has become a place dedicated to connecting man and nature in a way that's beneficial to both. Its main mission—conserving the land—helps it achieve its second and connected goal, which is to help people escape the ordinary and have a rip-roaring good time. I look around and silently thank Virginia Callaway for her generosity in allowing me to share her magnificent home. For more information, including news about seasonal events, see www.callawaygardens.com 26
June 2012 | www.primemontgomery.com
Despite differing political philosophies, Cason Callaway and Franklin D. Roosevelt, who had a vacation home in nearby Warm Springs, Georgia, were good friends. Although the naturally heated waters didn’t cure Roosevelt’s polio, they brought him some relief, and he spent so much time there that his home became known as the “Little White House.” The home, servant and guest quarters, pool complex and adjacent museum are all available for tours. As an added bonus, the drive from Callaway Gardens to Warm Springs goes through Georgia’s largest state park, which, not surprisingly, is named F.D. Roosevelt State Park. www.gastateparks.org/LittleWhiteHouse
Odd behavior could indicate health problems
Q: I just got my dog from a rescue shelter, and he needs some help. He's somewhere between 3 and 5 years old, and was at a puppy mill before landing in the shelter. He freezes whenever someone picks him up, and he runs around in circles a lot. Any suggestions? — A.S. A: Begin by capturing both behaviors on video (use a smart phone or a camera). It's unlikely your dog would re-enact the behaviors you describe at a veterinary clinic, so recording them let’s your veterinarian see what's going on. Dr. Sophia Yin, based in San Francisco and an applied animal behaviorist and author, says to have your veterinarian rule out possible medical explanations, including ear infection or vestibular syndrome. The video may help your vet rule out seizures to explain either or both behaviors. Freezing in place might be a result of pain. Pain, parasites, or anal gland issues might explain the spinning. Assuming your dog checks out physically,Yin says freezing in place is likely related to fear. Instead of reaching over your dog to pick him up, reach over him simply to drop treats. He'll quickly realize someone leaning over him is nothing to
worry about, but instead, a reason to celebrate. As for those bursts of energy,Yin says the potential explanations are varied. "It might be that your dog is excited and receives attention (or at least once did) for running in circles because family members thought it was funny, or that your dog is truly not receiving enough exercise and has developed that pattern as an outlet for pent-up energy." If the running in circles might be described as tail chasing, there's no medical explanation and the behavior can't easily be interrupted. The problem may be a true compulsive behavior, which calls for a visit to your veterinarian. Q:When people visit our home, the dog nibbles at their ankles. How can we stop this? — S.H.
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A: "Dogs may do this for many reasons," says dog trainer, author and certified dog behavior consultant Brenda Aloff, of Midland, MI. "Does this feel like play? If you are comfortable that it's play, then attempt to redirect the behavior. The second the dog looks like it will go for someone's ankles (or even better, before this happens), toss treats or a toy in the other direction. If you do this consistently, the dog will learn to go the other way when people walk by. For better control, you might even leash your dog when people visit." Aloff points to a lesson which applies to many behaviors: "To modify behavior, you must prevent rehearsal of the undesired behavior. The more the new desired behavior is practiced, the more quickly it will create a new neural pathway in the brain." If your dog isn't playing but demonstrating aggression, for now, leash the pet when you have company, or even put the dog in another room so everyone stays safe. Seek hands-on help from a dog trainer or certified dog behavior consultant. Steve Dale is certified as a Behavior Consultant by the International Assoc. of Animal Behavior Consultants. Contact him at Tribune Media Services, 2225 Kenmore Ave., Suite 114, Buffalo, NY. 14207, or by e-mail, email@example.com. Include name, city, state. (c) 2012 Tribune Media Services, Inc. Books by quoted authors n Yin - “Perfect Puppy in 7 Days” (CattleDog Publishing) n Aloff - “Puppy Problems? No Problem! A Survival Guide for Finding and Training Your New Dog” (Dogwise Pub) www.primemontgomery.com | June 2012
Marci’s Medicare Answer June 2012 Dear Marci, I have Medicaid and someone said I should consider enrolling in a Special Needs Plan. Could you please tell me more about these plans? — Beatrice Dear Beatrice, A Special Needs Plan (SNP) is a Medicare Advantage plan (a Medicare private health plan) that exclusively serves at least one of the following groups: n People who live in a nursing home or Intermediate Care Facility for the Mentally Retarded (either specific nursing homes or those in a certain area) and people who live in the community but require an institutional level of care; n People who have both Medicare and Medicaid (dual eligibles); n People who have a specific chronic, severe or disabling condition, as defined by the plan (such as HIV/AIDS, diabetes or heart disease). SNPs should be designed to provide Medicare-covered health care and services that meet the special needs of people in the groups they serve. SNPs must include drug coverage (Medicare Part D) as part of their benefits packages. Dear Marci, I am about to turn 65 but I do not wish to enroll in a Part D plan at this time. Will I face a penalty if I delay enrollment? — Alfred Dear Alfred, If you do not enroll in the Medicare prescription drug benefit (Part D) when you first become eligible, and you choose to enroll at a later date, you may have to pay a premium penalty. The premium penalty will be 1 percent for every month you delay enrollment (1 percent of the national base beneficiary premium). For example, the national base beneficiary premium in 2012 is $31.08 a month. If you delayed enrollment for seven months, your monthly premium penalty would be $2.18 ($31.08 x 1% = $0.3108 x 7 = $2.18), which will be added to your plan’s monthly premium. If you have to pay the premium penalty, and you do not qualify for Extra Help, you will have to do so for as long as you are enrolled in the Medicare prescription drug benefit. This penalty will increase every year, as the national base beneficiary premium increases. In some specific circumstances you will not have to pay the premium penalty.You will not have to pay a premium penalty for late enrollment if: n You already have prescription drug coverage at least as good as Medicare's ("creditable coverage"). In order to avoid a premium penalty, you cannot have been without creditable drug coverage for more than 63 days. Speak with your insurer or your company's human resources department to find out if your current drug coverage is as good as Medicare's or better. 28
June 2012 | www.primemontgomery.com
n You qualify for Extra Help and enroll in a Medicare private drug plan. n You show that you received inadequate information about whether your drug coverage was creditable.
Dear Marci, My Extra Help application was denied. I am struggling to afford my drugs. What should I do? — Nigel Dear Nigel, If your Extra Help application is going to be denied, you will receive a Pre-Decisional Notice telling you this in advance. This notice will tell you that you may not be eligible for Extra Help and show which information from your application will cause you to be rejected (for example, your income is too high). If you receive this notice and the information is wrong, you can use this opportunity to correct your application.You have 10 days from the date on the notice to correct the information. Once the Social Security Administration (SSA) has reviewed your application, you may receive a Notice of Denial that says you do not qualify or a “Notice of Award” that says you qualify only for partial Extra Help. If you disagree with the SSA’s decision, you can appeal. It is best not to reapply for Extra Help in either case. It is important to appeal, because if you win, your Extra Help will be effective from the first day of the month that you originally submitted an application. In order to appeal, you should: Request a review of your case (a hearing) within 60 days of receiving notice of SSA's decision on your application. Set a date for a hearing. Call your local SSA office or the national hotline (800-772-1213).You can also download an online form and mail it in to request a hearing. Hearings are held by phone.You will get a notice in the mail that confirms your hearing date and tells you what number to call (the number will be toll-free). This notice will also explain how to send in evidence supporting your case (for example, bank statements that show your assets). If you have a scheduling conflict, you can reschedule once or twice if you have good cause (for example, if you were in the hospital). If you do not want a hearing, you can ask for a case review, where an SSA agent will review your application and any additional information you send in. Marci’s Medicare Answers is a service of the Medicare Rights Center (www.medicarerights.org), the nation’s largest independent source of information and assistance for people with Medicare. To speak with a counselor, call (800) 333-4114. To subscribe to “Dear Marci,” the Medicare Rights Center’s free educational e-newsletter, simply e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn more about the services that Medicare will cover and how to change plans, log on to Medicare Interactive Counselor at the Medicare Rights Center’s website at www.medicareinteractive. org.
Medical Edge/mayo clinic
Ouch! My Aching Heel! Q A
: Are there any tried-and-true treatments for plantar fasciitis?
: Plantar fasciitis is a common foot problem that involves tiny tears in the thick band of tissue (plantar fascia) that connects the heel bone to the toes. Although there’s no one-size-fits-all approach, the heel pain that results from plantar fasciitis usually can be successfully treated with physical therapy and special equipment that gives the foot extra support. The purpose of the plantar fascia is to support the arch of the foot and to act as a shock absorber when you’re walking, running, jumping, or otherwise using your feet. If the strain on the plantar fascia becomes too great, small tears can develop in the tissue. Those tears can lead to inflammation and pain. Plantar fasciitis has many possible causes. Certain types of exercise that put a lot of stress on the feet can lead to this disorder. For example, it’s often seen in longdistance runners or ballet dancers. Excess weight can be a factor, particularly in overweight people who’ve been sedentary and then begin an exercise program. Shoes can be part of the problem, too. Loose, thin-soled shoes, and shoes without enough arch support or flexible padding to absorb shock can increase strain on the plantar fascia. Regularly wearing shoes with high heels can also cause strain on the tissue around the heel and lead to plantar fasciitis. To effectively treat plantar fasciitis, the extra stress on the plantar fascia must be relieved so the tears can heel. That can be accomplished in several ways. First, and probably most important, is to meet with a physical therapist who can show you a series of exercises to stretch the plantar fascia and strengthen your lower leg muscles, which stabilize your ankle and heel. Doing these stretching exercises regularly and consistently is critical to successful long-term treatment of plantar fasciitis. Second, a variety of equipment is available that can help provide extra support the foot needs as it heals. In some cases, wearing athletic tape to support the bottom of your foot during the day may be useful. At night while sleeping, you may need to wear a splint that stretches your calf and the arch of your foot. Regularly using arch supports that fit into your shoes or wearing shoes with built-in extra support may also be helpful.
Although it may take several months or more, in many cases these approaches are enough to relieve the symptoms of plantar fasciitis. Depending upon what caused your plantar fasciitis, you may need to continue wearing arch supports or special footwear long term to help ensure that the condition doesn’t return. A cortisone injection may also be considered in chronic or acute cases with associated bursitis. An ultrasound guided technique can be considered to ensure accurate placement of the medicine in the area of the tear. Rarely, in severe cases of plantar fasciitis or in chronic cases that aren’t helped with more conservative treatment, surgery may be an option. One procedure involves detaching the plantar fascia from the heel bone. But surgery is typically only used when the pain is severe and all other treatments have failed. Extracorporeal shock wave therapy, which uses sound waves directed at the area of heel pain to stimulate healing, may also be used to treat chronic plantar fasciitis. But research clinical trials have not found this procedure to be consistently effective. Once plantar fasciitis has been effectively treated, follow a few self-care tips to help keep it from coming back. Consistently wear shoes that have good arch supports. Avoid high heels and don’t go barefoot, especially on hard surfaces. Replace athletic shoes regularly; don’t wait until they lose their foot support and cushioning. Finally, maintain a healthy weight. All of these steps will minimize the stress and strain on your plantar fascia and help keep it healthy. Steven Kavros is a D. P. M. in the Dept. of Orthopedic Surgery at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. Medical Edge from Mayo Clinic is an educational resource and doesn't replace regular medical care. E-mail a question to email@example.com , or write: Medical Edge from Mayo Clinic, c/o TMS, 2225 Kenmore Ave., Suite 114, Buffalo, N.Y., 14207. For more information, visit www.mayoclinic.org. (c) 2012 Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. Distributed by Tribune Media Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved. www.primemontgomery.com | June 2012
JUNE CALENDAR RECURRING EVENTS Exercise Class, Bible Study, Bingo.Various days, times, locales. Mtgy. Area Council on Aging, www.macoa.org, 334-263- 0532. Zumba. Tues. 5-6 pm, Jackson Hospital, www.jackson.org, 334293-8978.
invited. 334-271-2280. Fibromyalgia -- 3rd Tues., 6-8 pm, Frazer Church. For info, 334272-8622.
Bluegrass Jam. 1st. Sat. 9 am-Noon. AL River Region Arts Center, Wetumpka. All levels welcome. 334-578-8594. FREE
Gluten Intolerance -- 4th Thurs., 6-7 pm, Taylor Rd. Baptist Church. Speaker, research, symptoms, etc. Sample gluten-free food. For info 334-328-5942, http://gfmontgomery.blogspot. com.
Jam Sessions. 2nd & 4th Sat., 9 am-noon, Old Alabama Town, www.oldalabamatown.com. 334-240-4500. FREE
Parkinson -- 4th Sun., 2 pm, Cloverdale School, Fairview Ave. For info 334-328-8702 or 334-322-6301.
THEATRE/MUSIC/DANCE/ART May 31-June 9. Wiley and the Hairy Man. Wetumpka Depot Players. Alabama Senior Citizens Hall of Fame 334-868-1440, www.wetumpNominations accepted through June 15 for Hall of kadepot.com. $ Fame induction or a Special/Honorary Award based on contributions to the welfare of/service to senior May 29-June 15. Three-week Faiadults. Categories include couples married 65 years rytale Ballet Camp, Montgomery or longer and those 100 years old or older. Forms Ballet. For children 4-8 years old. online — www.alabamaageline.gov/hallFame1.cfm. One and two-week sessions availFor info. call AL Dept. of Sr. Services, 334-242-5743. able. Daily snacks. 334-409-0522, www.montgomeryballet.org. $
Bluegrass Jam. 3rd Sat. (Mar.-Sept.), 9 am-noon. Perry Hill UMC. 334-272-3174. FREE “Not Just Art”. Tues. 10 am, Perry Hill United Methodist Church, www.perryhillumc.org, 334-2723174. FREE Montgomery Bridge Club. Lessons, games, tournaments. Mulberry St. www.montgomerybridgeclub.org, 334-265-2143. Docent lead tours. Sun., 1-2 pm. Mtgy Museum of Fine Arts. FREE
Capital City Club Book Group, Martinis and Manuscripts, 2nd Thurs., 6 pm, Jan-Nov. 334-834-8920.
June 3-4, 7pm. Auditions. Prattville’s Way Off Broadway Theatre production of Patio/Porch. Cultural Arts Center, 203 W. 4th St. For info. 334-358-0297. June 17, 7-9pm. 3rd Tues. each month. Songwriter’s Night, Cloverdale Playhouse. 334-262-1530, www.cloverdaleplayhouse. org. $
SUPPORT GROUPS Cancer -- Tues., 10-11 am, June 19-22. Summer Camp Mtgy Cancer Center. For Protecting Alabama’s Elderly ages 8-18. Millbrook info 334-279-6677. - Town Hall & Luncheon Community Players. For June 15, 10 a.m.-noon, AL Public Library Service, 6030 Monteinfo. 334-782-7317, www. Alzheimer’s/Dementia -cello Dr. Lunch provided to first 100 registrants. Open forum millbrooktheatre.com. $ 1st Thurs., 11 am, Frazer with experts from AL Dept. of Sr. Services, DHR Adult ProtecChurch. For info 334-272tive Services, AG’s Office, AL Securities Commission. Similar June 21, 7 pm, Mtgy Mu8622. events also taking place in Hunstville (June 13) and Mobile seum of Fine Arts, Wilson (June 19). All are free. RSVP by June 6 at 334-240-4666. Auditorium. Lecture by Dr. Visually impaired -- 2nd William P. Hood Jr., The Tues., 1-2:30 pm, Aldersgate Evolution of Flatware from United Methodist Church. the Traditional to the UnexFor info 334-272-6152. pected, 1885-2012. New insight into a seldom-considered but rich art form. Hearing Loss -- 2nd Thurs., 4 pm, First United Methodist Church. Speakers, hearing screenings, refreshments. FREE June 21, 7:30 & 9:30 pm. Starting Here, Starting Now. Cloverdale caption-enabled telephones are available until June 30. 334Playhouse. 334-262-1530, www.cloverdaleplayhouse.org. $ 262-3650. May 14, 6-8 pm. National Alliance on Mental Illness program. Church Annex, Dalraida UMC, 3817 Atlanta Hwy. Two mental health consumers discuss their journey to recovery. Public 30
June 2012 | www.primemontgomery.com
June 23, Mtgy Museum of Fine Arts opening: – Anderson Family Ceramics:The Legacy of Shearwater Pottery. Examples of Walter Anderson’s designs created at Shearwater
JUNE CALENDAR Pottery, Ocean Springs, MS. – Along the Shore:The Mississippi Gulf Coast in the Photography of Lyle Peterzell. Born and raised on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, Lyle Peterzell has been a professional photographer for more than 25 years in Los Angeles, Nashville and Washington, D.C. before returning to the Gulf Coast.
OTHER June 2, 10 am-2 pm. Annual Daylily Plant Sale. Eastdale Mall. Hosted by Mtgy Area Daylily Society. All plants freshly dug from member gardens. For info, Terese Goodson, 334-2886024, 334-354-2854, firstname.lastname@example.org.
June 14, noon. “Storming the State House”. Talk, book signing. Speaker of the AL House Mike Hubbard talks about the first – Fabulous Flatware: Non-traditional Tools for the Table. Innovarepublican-dominated legislature tive flatware designs from 1898 to in modern history. AL Dept. of 2011. Highlighting the imagination Archives/History. For info., 334-353International Ballet Workshops and creativity of designers and pro4726, www.archives.alabama.gov. From June 18 to July 15 the Montgomery Balducers of flatware, the exhibition FREE let hosts four weeks of workshops. All skill levels. takes a new look at these everyday Guest artists, master classes, speciality classes in tools. June 14, 3 pm. Celebrate Flag Day, nutrition, career management, media relations. For History of the American Flag, Eastdale June 23, 7 pm. Line Dance Workinfo. 334-409-0522, www.montgomeryballet.org. $ Estates, 5801 Eastdale Dr. Presentshop. Mtgy Area Square Dance ed by 187th Fighter Wing, Maxwell Assn., 2201 Chestnut St. All skill AFB. For info. 334-260-8911. FREE. levels taught. For info, Sylvia Hancock, 334-285-8386, Mary Wolfe 334-531-0054. June 21, noon. History of License Plates in Alabama. Collectorauthor Ross Sloan. AL Dept. of Archives/History. For info., FLEA MARKETS/FESTIVALS/FUNDRAISERS/ 334-353-4726, www.archives.alabama.gov. FREE CELEBRATIONS June 9, 6:30 am-1 pm. Indoor/outdoor yard sale. Millbrook June 29, 6-10 pm, Robert E. Lee Class of 1976 Reunion. ArCommunity Players. For info./reserve space, 334-782-7317. rowhead CC. For info. visit class website, www.lee76.myevent. com.
www.primemontgomery.com | June 2012
Recent dvd releases Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, Albert Nobbs & Coriolanus
Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol (PG-13) Tom Cruise heads up his supersecret spy team for the fourth big-screen adventure based on the cherished TV series of yore. Once again, the action is cranked up to high octane levels, as Cruise & Co. dash around the globe trying to thwart a Doomsday villain of Bondian proportions. The story takes them to the Kremlin, Dubai and Mumbai, among other exotic locations, among rich backdrops for some stunning visual effects. Simon Pegg returns as tech nerd Benji for some welcome comic relief. Paula Patton contributes eye candy and other skills as a new member of the IMF (not the International Monetary Fund). The plot details matter little. They’re merely an excuse for the adrenaline rushes of the action sequences. The film may actually peak a little early, since the segment in and around a 130-story hotel in Dubai occurs before the climactic confrontations elsewhere. Nitpickers might also find Cruise’s propensity for long stretches of his running after baddies or from explosions is growing a bit tiresome. But if you liked the other MI flicks, you should be pleased by this sequel, including the dangled prospect of a Round Five.
Albert Nobbs (R) Following Meryl Streep’s Margaret Thatcher impression in Iron Lady, and Leo DiCaprio’s take on Mr. Hoover in J. Edgar, here’s the third vanity project of the season, with Glenn Close playing a Victorian woman passing as a primly obsequious male valet in a small Irish hotel. It's a dramatic variation on Victor,Victoria, without any of its humor or charm. Her Mr. Nobbs is not an actual figure from history, but apparently the role embodies a phenomenon of the times, in which a number of women had to pose as men to find employment. Mr. Nobbs leads a quiet, lonely life, guarding his/her gender secret and surprisingly large savings, hoping to open a shop some day for true independence. When (s)he learns that other women have not only employed similar ruses, but actually formed “marriages” for better cover and other benefits, Nobbs aspires to something of that nature. One senses all along that nothing good will come of this, though there’s some suspense in what the source of 32 June 2012 | www.primemontgomery.com
Nobbs’ undoing may be. Even though there’s a certain value in understanding just how much women Mark Glass have had to overcome in the past century, the story is slow, uncomfortable and ultimately unsatisfying, other than the chance to marvel at Close’s versatile artistry.
Coriolanus (R) Shakespearean films - especially treatments of his tragedies - can be daunting. The language is alien to contemporary ears; the usual dominance of British accents helps little; the wordsper-minute flow adds to the auditory burden, since there’s generally pressure to cram in all the original dialogue they can while shortening the running time of staged versions. But sometimes a creative twist can make the effort worthwhile. Coriolanus (Ralph Fiennes) was a lionized Roman war hero until he became an inconvenient civilian in the very peacetime he’d created. Banished from Rome on a bum rap, he offered his services to a defeated, yet determined, foe. His new troops start kicking Legion ass. That led to negotiations for another truce, dividing his loyalties among his new army, his old empire, and the family he left there during his forced exile. Meanwhile, the starving citizens respond with shifting loyalties and their own, decidedly more extreme, version of the Occupy Movement. Bad stuff happens all around. It is, after all, a tragedy. Now for the cool part. The language is old, but the setting is modern. That means high-tech battles with tanks, automatic weapons, grenades and other stuff that “blows up real good.” As director, Fiennes gets to play with more toys and action figures than anyone has ever deployed while filming one of The Bard’s products. As the eponymous star, he’s G.I. Joe with a phalanx of conflicting personal and political issues weighing heavily upon his fatigue-clad shoulders. He also sports more fake blood than when he starred in The English Patient.Vanessa Redgrave, Brian Cox, Jessica Chastain and Gerard Butler headline a strong supporting cast. If you prefer your Shakespeare on the bloody side, this one’s not only for you, but more adrenaline-laden than reading the Cliff Notes.
Mark Glass is an officer and director of the St. Louis Film Critics Association.
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GAMES & PUZZLES Across 1 Programmer's banes 5 Hollywood tree 9 Soup base 14 Subj. to bone up on? 15 Airline with blue-striped jets 16 Washer cycle 17 Poor boy seller 18 *Delayed reaction 20 *Radioactive decay measure 22 Baa nana? 23 "__ Mio": classic Italian song 24 Treasure-__ 26 Question of identity 29 Pre-euro Spanish coin 31 *Aviation display 33 Reykjavik-born onenamed singer 36 Iron-rich green veggie 37 Repeatedly ... and a hint to the answers to starred clues 42 Beret perch 43 Choir part 44 *Military hobbyist's pastime 47 It makes Tom frisky 52 "Little Women" sister
53 Alimentary route 56 "Seinfeld" specialty 57 __-fi 58 *Prom time, to promgoers 60 *Modern 64 Fireworks reaction 65 Knocks for a loop 66 1804 duelist 67 "__ arigato": Japanese "thank you very much" 68 Provolone alternative 69 Part of a.k.a. 70 Paradise Down 1 Tough play for Derek Jeter 2 The heebie-jeebies 3 Winemakers Ernest and Julio 4 Put the kibosh on 5 Salon foot treatment, briefly 6 High, as a kite 7 "Today" co-host 8 Diamond org. 9 Stout maker 10 Bat mitzvah, e.g. 11 "Come __ My House": Rosemary Clooney hit 12 "Have you no shame?"
13 Laugh syllable 19 First name in jeans 21 Leave alone 25 Like bourbon barrels 26 "Kapow!" cousin 27 Links target 28 Run a tab, say 30 Double-platinum Steely Dan album 32 Deal with moguls? 34 Quite a lot 35 66, notably: Abbr. 37 Nine of diamonds? 38 "Just doing my job" 39 "Little Women" sister 40 Mythical big bird 41 Get fit 42 "Up, up and away" carrier 45 The "A" in RAM 46 Principal 48 Vacuum tube type 49 Call after a missed field goal 50 Like some health care 51 Slithering squeezer 54 Kareem __-Jabbar 55 Perjurers 57 Grounded fleet: Abbr. 59 Pita sandwich 60 Jammies 61 Obey the coxswain 62 Actor Wallach 63 Sched. question mark (c)2012 TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.
Sukoku and Crossword answers on page 31. 34
June 2012 | www.primemontgomery.com
www.primemontgomery.com | June 2012
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Call us today (334) 281-8400 “The doctor to see is an ENT.”
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Find us on the web at www.allearscenters.com
Director of Hearing Instruments