Page 1



January 2017

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine


for Boomers and Beyond

January 2017

5 ways to cut back on added sugars


f you pay attention to dietary headlines, you’ve probably heard the fuss over foods with added sugars. And you might wonder: How could something so deliciously sweet be so potentially bad for your health? First, it’s important to remember that sugars occur naturally in many foods, from milk to fruit. But that’s not the issue here. Instead, we’re talking sugars, syrups and caloric sweeteners that are added to foods when they’re processed or prepared. And if their calories make up too much of your diet, you may not have enough room for other nutritious choices. Diets that limit added sugars are linked to a reduced risk of obesity and certain chronic diseases.

Where’s the extra sugar?

Everyone knows candy, cookies, cakes and regular sodas have added sugars. But added sugars are also listed on packaged food labels under dozens of different names. Among them: cane sugar, syrup, brown sugar and many words ending in ose (like fructose or dextrose).

Added sugars can be a part of a nutritious diet—you don’t have to shun them all. However, you should limit them to less than 10 percent of your daily calories. To help cut back: 1. Choose naturally sweet fruits for desserts or snacks. Add fruit (instead of sugar) to cereal. Make a peanut butter sandwich with bananas or berries instead of jelly or jam. 2. Shop for foods with less or no added sugar. For instance, choose plain (instead of flavored) yogurt and add your favorite fruit. Try unsweetened applesauce and fruit canned in water or natural juices rather than heavy syrup. 3. Swap your usual sweetened soda, punch or energy drink for water or milk. 4. When baking, try using only half the recommended sugar. Chances are, nobody will notice. 5. Make candy, cookies and other sweets an occasional treat. Limiting added sugars is just one of many smart things you can do to help ensure a healthy eating plan, but always talk with your doctor about what is right for you. Looking for a primary care provider? Call 334-293-888 or visit

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



It’s not just your joints that are suffering.

It’s your life.

Introducing the Joint Center of Alabama at Baptist South. Is joint pain making you miss out on life? It’s time to stop hurting and start living. The new Joint Center of Alabama at Baptist South offers joint replacement surgery, recovery and rehab all in one convenient

Joint Center of Alabama


location. And our specialized doctors and surgeons know how to get you back to living. So call us today to schedule a visit. (334) 273.4444

Bring the pain. 5

BOOM!, The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine


January 2017 Volume 7 Issue 6

You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” C.S. Lewis

Thought Relationships Taste Inspiration

Humor Advice Health Community

“Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending.”

Carl Bard

3 Jackson Hospital’s Health News 8 Publisher’s Letter 10 Dating Coach: 10 dating tips 50-plus, single women need to know 12 New Year Nutrition Leigh Anne Richards 13 Ask Nancy: Caring for Aging Relatives page 32page 32

Features 32 “Dreams Do Come True!”

34 Record Your Family Lore

Celebrates 60th Wedding Anniversary Record your relative’s histories

36 The BUTLER Does It

Your butler is reporting for duty.

Departments 18 This and That

Getting You “In the Know”

14 Does Your Portfolio? Brandt McDonald 17 Healthy Hearing Casey Gonzalez 18 Molly Ringwald, Silver Screen & Jazz Sensation 19 Shen Yun Performing Arts

44 {12} Things

Special Events for Boomers

40 Greg Budell

22 Winn-Dixie at the Alabama Shakespeare Festival


24 BOOM! Cover Profile



30 Holiday Burnout Ask an Elder Law Attorney

page 24

39 Gallery One presents Art & Fashion page 18

page 20

page 23

43 Eating Smart with Tracy Bhalla: History of Peppermint 44 Alan Rickman role is underappreciated and connected to Montgomery

page 40

page 45

46 Be a safety-savvy GRANDPARENT

BOOM! The River Regions 50+ Lifestage Magazine is published monthly by River Region Publications, 3966 Atlanta Hwy, Box 266, Montgomery, AL 36109. The phone number is 334.324.3472. Copyright 2017 by River Region Publications. No part of this publication can be reproduced without written permission from the publisher. Opinions expressed in BOOM! The River Regions 50+ Lifestage Magazine are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the view of the owners, nor do they constitute an endorsement of products and services herein.

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



Publisher’s Letter

Serve Others This Year Do you serve others? Many of you do. We serve in many ways. Some of you are caregivers for family members who couldn’t cope without your help. We also serve strangers that need a hot meal delivered each day. What about those without a home, or the people in our community who can’t read very well. There are many young people who need someone to help them with their schoolwork. The elderly who live in poverty with no support. There are just too many people who need our help.

The mission of BOOM! is to serve the folks of the River Region age 50 plus with information and ideas to inspire new experiences, better quality of life and new beginnings.


Jim Watson, 334.324.3472

Contributing Writers Sandi Aplin Tracy Bhalla Greg Budell

Lisa Copeland Casey Gonzalez Coke Ellington Brenda Hellums Treva Lind Brandt McDonald Leigh Anne Richards Nancy Stein Raley L. Wiggins Kathy Witt

Cover Photography Jeri Hines Total Image Portraits 334.261.2080


Jim Watson, 334.324.3472 Please Recycle This Magazine, Share with a Friend!

I want to give more of myself to others this year. I want to serve and encourage all of you to serve more in the coming year. To start, you can go to the Hands on Jim Watson, Publisher River Region website at and look up volunteering opportunities. There are many to choose from and if something doesn’t attract your attention give them a call at 334.264.3335 and ask for some ideas. I currently volunteer at Hospice of Montgomery and we are always in need for more volunteers. Chances are you’ll have to get out of your comfort zone to give away more of yourself to others but I’ve been told, it’s well worth the sacrifice! Our Cover Profile this month is a woman who knows a little something about serving others. Her name is Brenda Hellums, she is the Director of Daily Money Management Services at Warren Averett CPAs and Advisors, a financial services firm operating in the Southeast. In addition to these responsibilities, Brenda is the caregiver for her husband Ed who was diagnosed with Lewy Body Dementia in 2010. Brenda believes in serving…her community, her clients and most often, her husband. She was a joy to get to know and I hope you’ll enjoy getting to know her too. There are many other good reads in this month’s issue including a feature on some eightysomethings celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary at Disney World! And then there’s a feature about collecting and organizing some of your family’s lore before it’s too late. Your future generations will thank you. Greg Budell has got something to say this month…I TOLD YOU SO! When it comes to politics don’t doubt our man Greg. For you single ladies over 50 we have 10 dating tips that will give you the tools or insight to begin some new relationships and possibly love. There’s plenty more to check out this month, so enjoy the best reading experience for the 50+ community in the River Region. Please share BOOM! with your friends and your comments with me. I love to listen. Please sign up for the free subscription to the Digital & Interactive BOOM! online at Thanks for being part of our BOOM! Community. Have a Happy New Year Serving Others!

Jim 334.324.3472 cell/text

Digital & Interactive

When you read the Digital & Interactive version of BOOM! on your digital device you will be interactive with every website and email link in the magazine. You can click through to a writer’s source, an advertiser, send comments and suggestions, request more info and share your favorite reads on Facebook and Twitter. The Digital & Interactive version was built for the new you so go ahead and sign up for a free subscription at “BOOM!, the best reading experience for the 50+ community”


January 2017

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017




10 dating tips 50-plus, single women need to know Tip No. 1 - You want to put in writing both your short term and your longterm dating goals. My short-term goals were about meeting new and interesting men and I wanted to have fun dating. My long-term goal was about being in a committed relationship. Both worked out well for me and they can for you too when you start your journey with this exercise.

It’s far more important to look for someone who will make you laugh and open your heart than it is to find a man who is 6 feet tall. Tip No. 5 - Get out of your comfort zone and date men who are different than your usual type.

Tip No. 2 - Stop making excuses for not dating. I hear women say, “Now isn’t the right time (and I ask them if not now, when?); or they have to lose 10 pounds before they can even think about dating.” This type of thinking comes from fear. When you’re feeling this way, take a baby step and go on one dating site. Once you’ve taken one step and you’ve had some success, the next step will be a lot easier. The cool thing is ... you might find you’re having fun! Tip No. 3 - Not understanding the language men speak and hear may be keeping you from finding a great guy. (By the way, they are not women in men’s bodies!) Men don’t love talking about feelings although they are far more emotional than you think. They just don’t know how to express it thanks to feelings often being squelched by adults in their childhood. By learning the language men speak and hear, you’re going to find that you start getting your needs met more often without having to ask for what you want over and over again. Tip No. 4 - End the cycle of being overly perfectionistic about what men must have in order to date you.

10 BOOM!

January 2017

Your usual type hasn’t made you happy in the past so why will he start making you happy now? Tip No. 6 - Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right! Henry Ford said this about developing cars. Turns out it’s true for just about every aspect of your life, including finding good men and dating. Tip No. 7 - Stop dating from your mind and start dating from your heart. Your heart doesn’t necessarily want what your mind does when it comes to a man. Remember your mind is always trying to keep you safe and in your comfort zone. Your heart wants you to feel loved, cherished and adored which are qualities you want in a man if one of your goals is to be in a long-term relationship.

Tip No. 8 - Go from invisibility to ‘Rock Star Visibility’ with great pictures and a warm inviting profile online! Men are visual and they want to see you and your beautiful smile not pictures of your cat, the scenery from your last vacation or your favorite outfit without you in it. Here’s the difference a great profile and awesome pictures can make. Laurie of New Jersey writes, “It’s only been about 24 hours since I put my new profile and pictures online. Forty-nine men want to meet me, 14 have written to me including two of my ‘top 10 prospects’ as have two other men I really would be interested in talking to. And the notes are so flattering and sweet. This is more activity than I’ve had in a year. You are a genius Lisa!” Tip No. 9 - Dating can be both overwhelming and exhausting. It’s important to take a break whenever you need to. Get back in touch with what lights you up. Once you do, you’ll feel rejuvenated and ready to date again. Tip No. 10 - Have fun and enjoy yourself on a date meeting someone new and interesting. Everyone has a story ... your job is to find out what his is. Definitely makes a date a lot more fun! Lisa Copeland, “The Dating Coach Who Makes Dating Fun and Easier after 50!” Find out more at (c)2017, Lisa Copeland, Distributed by MCT Information Services The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



New Year Nutrition: Practical Nutrition Approaches for Health Optimization Happy New Year! As we embark on a New Year we all have those goals we set for our “diets.” There are so many books out there about how to lose weight, or eat this to stay healthy. What do we believe and who can we really trust? Remember the 80’s no fat craze and we just got fatter. What about eat for your blood type? I could go on and on just about the fads that have come and gone. I am not a nutritionist and I rely on somebody that is educated and board certified for my information. Therefore, I asked Mike Polis, a licensed nutritionist, to write the column about New Year Nutrition to give us sound advice on how we live a healthy lifestyle through eating, because THAT is what it’s about! NO quick fix but a lifestyle. Just scan your social media feed and you are bound to encounter a friend sharing a nutrition-related article on the latest and greatest dieting trend. At the gym, you will likely overhear a conversation about the best foods to eat to burn body fat. Seems like everyone has a story to tell. With the New Year comes an influx of short-term, gimmick-nutrition approaches guaranteed to bring you closer to your health and fitness goal in 2017. What ever happened to practical nutrition approaches? As a registered and licensed dietitian, my goal is to help people find the truth in nutrition. We live in a society bombarded with false advertising, marketing schemes, instant gratification, and nutrition fallacies.

12 BOOM!

January 2017

We have gotten away from the “back to basics” approach when it comes to nutrition. Nutrition is a science. Fad diets and short-term diet strategies are forever

2) Practicing moderation 3) Not restricting himself entirely

This time of year, individuals will begin adhering to a meal plan that is overly restrictive and limited to just a few select foods. These meal plans often have designated “cheat days” where the individual is more than likely to by Leigh Anne Richards binge on high calorie foods after restricting intake for so long. Why not practice moderation and enjoy that small treat 20% fleeting, but evidence-based nutrition of the time on a daily basis? application is the backbone for longterm success. People often ask me, I like to call this the 80/20 rule. “what’s the best diet to be on?” and my response is usually something like, “one Using a nutrition tracking tool such as that you can stay on.” MyFitnessPal is a great way to hold yourself accountable as far as your We often point the finger at foods calorie and macronutrient intake goes. in isolation and label them as “good Using pen and paper to keep a food for you” or “bad for you.” Well, this record works just as well. Any time approach is missing the forest beyond you can monitor your dietary patterns the trees. You see, the food and and recognize trends, you are in better beverage we consume on a daily basis position to evaluate your progress. comprises our overall dietary pattern. We either have good dietary patterns Back to basics. Nothing fancy. Identify or bad dietary patterns. There are no those culprit foods and beverages that “good foods” or “bad foods,” but there you can moderate. We all have them. are “good diets” and there are “bad If you drink 4 sodas a day – make it a diets.” goal to decrease your intake to 3 sodas a day. Then eventually 2 sodas a day For example, let’s say 80% of the and so on. Small steps go a long way. time John selects nutrient-dense, It takes several small changes to effect wholesome foods such as fruits, one big change. vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein sources. However, John chooses Brick by brick, you’ll lay the foundation “junk food” 20% of the time such as a for a sustainable and enjoyable bowl of ice cream at night or a small lifestyle. candy bar. John is mindful of his caloric All the best in 2017, intake and finds time to incorporate Mike Polis MS, RD, LD physical activity most days of the week. Health Promotion & Performance Dietitian Overall, John has a good dietary pattern because he is: Leigh Anne Richards, MEd, Certified Personal 1) Opting for nutrient-dense foods most Trainer, Group Exercise Instructor, General ManagerMetroFitness. For any questions or comments, of the time

Fitness over Fifty

contact Leigh Anne at

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

Ask Nancy: Caring for Aging Relatives Mom is angry and stressed from caregiving

Q: My father, age 88 has periods of confusion, and when they occur my mother gets very angry and critical of him, which makes him all the more confused. While I realize she’s probably acting out of fear and frustration, it is extremely detrimental. How do I address this with her? _Amy V., Princeton, NJ. A: Your parent’s situation is not unusual, unfortunately. Many people express anger at their parent or spouse for behavior that is clearly not in their control. Your insight that your mother is reacting out of fear and frustration is likely correct and it demonstrates your own sensitivity to your mother’s issues as she tries to adjust to her new role as a caregiver to your father.

empathize and validate her own stress. It would be helpful to suggest some coping tools she could utilize such as relaxation

techniques or breathing slowly to calm down before responding.

I spoke with Debra Kimmel, LCSW, a psychologist in Boca Raton, who provided additional insights and suggestions for how to support her.

“If she wants to protect you from hearing her concerns, she might benefit too from expressing her feelings with a professional or a support group of other caretakers who share common issues.”

“Illness always affects an entire family and your mother may need for you to

If your father’s periods of confusion has been going on for a long time, your

mother’s impatience with your father may also be a sign of exhaustion or weariness as she takes on more tasks and decision-making. If you can, try spending more time with her to show your concern for her needs as well as those of your father. A regular lunch date would offer opportunities for heart-to-heart talks. Participating together in something she enjoys, say gardening, a book group or just shopping are other ways to have fun together. Alternatively, spending additional time with your father would give her more time to see friends so she would feel less isolated during this difficult time. If you have siblings, it’s important to include them in a plan that offers relief to your mother in any manner that is helpful to her. Nancy Stein, Ph.D., is the founder of Seniority Matters (, a caregiver advisory and referral service in South Florida for seniors and their families. You can contact her at (c) 2017, Seniority Matters, Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



Does Your Portfolio Reflect Your Risk Tolerance? There are many types of risk associated with investing. Understanding each type and the effect it may have on your portfolio returns is crucial to your long-term investing success.

bonds that pay higher interest rates. On the plus side, bonds historically have exhibited less short-term volatility that stocks, although past performance is no guarantee of future results.

Because all investments entail risk, you may want to review your mix of stocks, bonds, and cash investments with an eye toward creating a risk/return profile that is appropriate for your situation.

It’s also important to look at cash investments, such as 3-month Treasury bills, from a vantage point of risk and return.¹ Although Treasury bills typically experience a low level of volatility, they may be subject to inflation risk -- or the possibility that their returns may not keep pace with the rising cost of goods and services. For this reason, you may want to use cash investments for short-term situations when you expect to access your money within 12 months or less.

Smart investors understand all types of risk -- and use that knowledge to their advantage.

Financial Thoughts

When it comes to investing, many people with associate risk with losing money. But Brandt McDonald investing entails different types of risk. Understanding each type -- and the potential return associated with your retirement portfolio -- can help you determine whether your investments are appropriate for your situation. Examining Risk and Return Stocks historically have exhibited the highest level of market risk -- or the potential that an investment may lose money in the short term. Over long periods of time, however, stocks have outperformed both bonds and cash investments.¹ This risk/return tradeoff may influence how you allocate your investments. For instance, consider weighting assets that you intend to keep invested for 10 years or more toward stock investments. Bonds carry their own risks -- credit risk, or the possibility that a bond issuer could default on interest and principal payments; and interest rate risk -- the chance that rising interest rates could cause a bond’s price to fall. Ascending interest rates historically have influenced the prices of bonds more directly than the prices of stocks.¹ When short-term rates are on the rise, investors may sell older bonds that pay a lower rate of interest -- causing their prices to fall -- in favor of newly issued

Putting Risk in Perspective Because all investments entail risk, you may want to review your mix of stocks, bonds, and cash investments with an eye toward creating a risk/return profile that is appropriate for your situation. Owning different types of assets may increase your chances of experiencing the benefits associated with each, while mitigating the corresponding risk. Your retirement portfolio won’t be risk free, but you will have the confidence of knowing that you’ve done what you can to manage a potential downside. This article offers only an outline; it is not a definitive guide to all possible consequences and implications of any specific investment strategy. For this reason, be sure to seek advice from knowledgeable financial professionals. As I always say, until next time, remember to never run with the herd, always be thankful, and look to the future with anticipation of what’s yet to come. Brandt McDonald, Managing Partner McDonald & Hagen Wealth Management LPL Branch Manager Direct comments and questions to or 334.387.0094

Source/Disclaimer: 1 Source: Wealth Management Systems Inc. For the 30-year period ended December 31, 2013. Stocks are represented by the Standard & Poor’s Composite Index of 500 Stocks, an unmanaged index that is generally considered representative of the U.S. stock market. Investing in stocks involves risks, including loss of principal. Bonds are represented by the Barclays U.S. Aggregate Bond index. Bonds are subject to market and interest rate risk if sold prior to maturity. Bond values will decline as interest rates rise and are subject to availability and change in price. Cash is represented by the Barclays 3-Month Treasury Bills index. It is not possible to invest directly in an index. Government bonds and Treasury bills are guaranteed by the U.S. government as to the timely payment of principal and interest, and, if held to maturity, offer a fixed rate of return and fixed principal value. Past performance is not a guarantee of future performance. Because of the possibility of human or mechanical error by Wealth Management Systems Inc. or its sources, neither Wealth Management Systems Inc. nor its sources guarantees the accuracy, adequacy, completeness or availability of any information and is not responsible for any errors or omissions or for the results obtained from the use of such information. In no event shall Wealth Management Systems Inc. be liable for any indirect, special or consequential damages in connection with subscriber’s or others’ use of the content. © 2016 DST Systems, Inc. Reproduction in whole or in part prohibited, except by permission. All rights reserved. Not responsible for any errors or omissions. The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. All performance referenced is historical and is no guarantee of future results. All indices are unmanaged and may not be invested into directly. The economic forecasts set forth may not develop as predicted and there can be no guarantee that strategies promoted will be successful. Securities offered through LPL Financial. Member FINRA & SIPC. Investment advice offered through McDonald & Hagen Wealth Management, a Registered Investment Advisor, and separate entity from LPL Financial.

14 BOOM!

January 2017

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



16 BOOM!

January 2017

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

“What If …” - Steps to Better Hearing in 2017 Life can be filled with a multitude of “What if …” questions: “What if I fail?” “What if people notice?” “What if I’m afraid?” These questions and uncertainties may go through your mind when contemplating the purchase of hearing aids. It may seem like a significant life change, and you don’t know how it will impact you. However, have you ever asked yourself the question, “What if this could change my life for the better?” A roadblock stopping many from understanding hearing loss and taking the initial step toward purchasing hearing aids is that they don’t necessarily know what they are missing. Taking the first step and scheduling an appointment with Montgomery Hearing Services can help bring clarity to many of these questions.

Sometimes it is helpful to hear from others who have personally experienced a similar situation. Below are some testimonials of patients whose lives have been positively impacted because of the decision to improve their hearing with hearing aids.

“I’m thankful I got the help I needed as I enjoy hearing those happy birds sing.” – Elsie Shannon, Montgomery Hearing Services Patient

Healthy Hearing

You are not alone on this journey toward better hearing! Stop asking yourself “What if …” and start asking yourself “Why not?”

Casey Gonzalez received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication Disorders By Casey Gonzalez, Au.D., CCC-A, FAAA from Louisiana State University, and her Montgomery Hearing Services Doctorate of Audiology degree from Louisiana State University Health Science Center. Casey holds a Certificate of Clinical Competence from the American Speech “As a physician, clearly understanding and Hearing Association and is a Fellow of the American Academy of Audiology. patients was critical. Getting the right

hearing aids blocked out distracting noise and brought in clear speech.” – Neil Stronach, M.D., Retired Montgomery Otolaryngology Physician, hearing aid wearer

“The softest sounds that I had been missing for years, I could now hear!” –Ed Saliba, Montgomery Hearing Services Patient

Free Hearing Screenings

This month, Montgomery Hearing Services is offering FREE hearing screenings and technology demonstrations. Call us to schedule an appointment: (334) 651-0500

Make a Better HEARING Resolution! Don’t miss one laugh, conversation, or moment in 2017! Call Montgomery Hearing Services to schedule a FREE hearing screening during the month of January and learn how hearing aids can enhance your life.

(334) 651-0500 1758 Park Place, Suite 101 • Montgomery, AL 36106 © 2016 SMPN. All Rights Reserved. 12/16 50014-16

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017




This & tHAT

Molly Ringwald, Silver Screen Icon & Jazz Sensation Well known for her roles on stage and screen, Ringwald earned a Golden Globe at age 13 and went on to star in numerous iconic films, including Sixteen Candles, The Breakfast Club and Pretty in Pink. On stage, she has starred in Broadway productions of the Pulitzer Prize-winning How I Learned to Drive, the revival of Cabaret, Tony-nominated Enchanted April and the West End production of When Harry Met Sally. However, little known about the star is her bona fide classical jazz background. The daughter of blind jazz pianist Bob Ringwald, Molly first began performing jazz at the tender age of six with the Fulton Street Jazz Band. Since her debut Jazz album, Except Sometimes, was released on Concord Records in April 2013, she and her band have performed 200 concerts in over seven countries, and with songs such as “Don’t You Forget About Me,” she continues to show off those sultry pipes to audiences around the world. “The spin she brings to the American Songbook is thoroughly contemporary.” ~ The New York Times. Molly will be appearing at the The Library Theatre in Hoover, AL. Show times are Thursday, January 12 and Friday, January 13, at 7:30 pm. For more info visit

Whiskey 101: Introduction to the Wonderful World of Whiskey The Porter Room, Montgomery’s premier whiskey venue, will be the setting for a “Whiskey 101” class for novices and aficionados alike. The event will help you and your palate discover the difference between different types of whiskeys. Please join us to find out the basics of whiskey and connect with others in the Montgomery area that like to talk about life, sip, think, and share. Discover the difference between Scotch Single Malts, Bourbons, Wheated Bourbons, Rye, and Irish Whiskey. You will be led through an intimate 30-45 minute scheduled tasting. The small group session will allow for questions and encourage discussion as your group enjoys each new whiskey. Patrons are seated at a table in groups of 5 and led through the tasting by one of our experts. Before or after your scheduled tasting, you are invited to adjourn to the Tavern Room and enjoy award-winning Dreamland BBQ, order cocktails, and impress others with your newfound knowledge. The event includes: 5 - .75 oz pours of: Scotch (single malt) - Balvenie Doublewood 12yr, Bourbon Whiskey Elmer T, Bourbon Whiskey (wheated) - WL Weller, Rye Whiskey - Sazerac Rye, Irish Whiskey - Tullamore Dew 12 year. Friday, January 20, 5-9 pm. For ticket info visit or

Get Your Affairs in Order, FREE Estate Planning and Asset Protection Workshop Wednesday, January 25: Hosted by Red Oak Legal, PC: 1:30 - 3:30 pm at the Archibald Senior Center (MACOA) in Montgomery. This educational workshop presented by local attorney Raley L. Wiggins covers wills, trusts, powers of attorney, advance directives, living wills, probate administration, protecting assets from creditors, bankruptcy, divorce and remarriage, nursing homes, long-term care and Medicaid qualification. Registration is required. Call 334.625.6774 today to reserve your seat or register online at

18 BOOM!

January 2017

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

BOOMERS, share your stuff with BOOM! We Love to Bring BOOMERS Together, send info and pics to

Shen Yun Performing Arts, Experience a Divine Culture IN ANCIENT TIMES, China was known as the Land of the Divine. Everyone, from emperors to the common people, believed that their culture was a gift from heaven. They lived in harmony with the universe and saw a connection among all things. Traditional Chinese culture carried these principles for thousands of years—until this world was lost. We now invite you to visit this lost civilization. To make this journey possible, we have pushed the boundaries of performing arts. We combine ancient legends with technological innovations, and historically authentic costumes with breathtaking animated backdrops. We let classical Chinese dance do the storytelling, and share with you beautifully diverse ethnic and folk traditions. Filled with an enchanting orchestral sound, this is a mesmerizing experience you won’t find anywhere else. Performance date is Thursday, February 2, 7:30 pm. at The Montgomery Performing Arts Center. For tickets visit and for more info visit

Something for Your Grandchild, Depot Days Youth Theatre Academy Area students are invited to participate in enriching theatre related workshops led by experienced theatre instructors. “Our programs will be diverse this winter session,” said Depot executive director, Kristy Meanor. “ We are offering Fancy Fridays with a curriculum based on the incredibly popular Fancy Nancy books as well the Boomer Train workshop that features designing with Legos and Minecraft. Creating programs based on these popular trends will assure students will have fun while learning.” Fancy Fridays will cover the basics of THEATRE 101 for children grades 2-5th grade! Classes will be 4-5pm beginning Friday January 13 and will end Friday February 17. Cost is $200 (Tuition may be made in two installments!) The Boomer Train program will accept students who enjoy Legos and Minecraft and will focus on building miniature models. Children 4th - 8th grade may enroll for our Boomer Train’s winter program that will run for six sessions, Tuesday and Thursday afternoons in January. January 10, 13, 17, 19, 24 and 26 from 5-6pm. Cost is $150.00 Tuition may be made in two installments. Parents may enroll their students in the Depot Days Youth Theatre Academy by emailing or calling 334.868.1440

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



This & tHAT



Capri Classics: American Graffiti This Academy Award-nominated classic, voted one of the American Film Institute’s Top 100 Films Of All Time, features the coming of age of four teenagers on their last summer night before college. Rediscover drag racing, Inspiration Point and drive-ins all over again in this nostalgic look back the summer of ‘62. The incredible soundtrack brings you over 40 of the most memorable rock and roll hits of the era. Directed by George Lucas (before Star Wars) and produced by Francis Ford Coppola (between Godfathers), this classic stars Richard Dreyfuss (before Jaws), Ron Howard (before Happy Days), Suzanne Somers (before Three’s Company), Cindy Williams (before Laverne and Shirley), Wolfman Jack (before The Midnight Special), Harrison Ford (before Han Solo) and Mackenzie Phillips (before drugs). Where were you in ‘62? Show time: Thursday, January 19, 7:30 pm. For more info call 334.262.4858 or visit

Child Protect, Children’s Advocacy Center, Kicks off Building Campaign Child Protect, Children’s Advocacy Center has kicked off a Building Campaign, led by co-chairs Anita Carter and Kate Vance, inviting the public to “Share Our Vision”. The campaign goal is $598,000. Child Protect was established to assist the Department of Human Resources and Law Enforcement in their investigation of child sexual abuse and child physical abuse. Child Protect provides an environment that is conducive to children, not only lessening the trauma to the child but making a stronger case for investigators and prosecutors. Child Protect provides a forensic interview, counseling and family advocacy to children where there has been a report of alleged abused after a referral from the Department of Human Resources and/or law enforcement. Child Protect’s proposed addition includes six offices for multidisciplinary team use, a high-tech conference room with a capacity to hold fifty people, a kitchen to service that conference room and host “kitchen counseling” sessions, a playground, and more storage area. Also included is an addition of a shower into the current occupied space. This building campaign seeks donors and advocates to partner with them in ensuring that the needs of child abuse victims and their families are met, as well as educating the community on warning signs to break the cycle of abuse in Montgomery. As of November 29, thanks to Jeanne Drummond and her commitment for the naming of our building, along with other pledges from individuals, 54% of the fundraising goal has been met. For more information on Child Protect’s Building Campaign you may visit their website at, Facebook page, or contact Executive Director, Jannah Bailey, at 334.262.1220.

January is National Blood Donor Month You don’t need a special reason to give blood. You just need your own reason. Some of us give blood because we were asked by a friend. Some know that a family member or a friend might need blood some day. Some believe it is the right thing to do. Whatever your reason, the need is constant and your donation is important for maintaining a healthy and reliable blood supply. You’ll feel good knowing you’ve helped change a life! To give blood visit these websites:,,

20 BOOM!

January 2017

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

Feast of Flavours 2017, ASF’s Armchair Auction Preview party

Get up close and personal with the items up for auction at the Alabama Shakespeare Festivals’ Armchair Auction Preview Party on Monday, January 23rd from 5:30 - 8:00 pm. Bidding will open the night of the event. The Feast of Flavours features restaurants competing for Chef of 2017, Pastry Chef of 2017 and Mixologist of 2017 and is the centerpiece of ASF’s Armchair Auction Preview Party. Five restaurants will be invited to compete for each award. Attendees will vote to determine the winners. For questions or to purchase tickets, please call 800.841.4273.

For Wine-Lovers: Vinebox

The problem with wine subscription services is that they tend to send you a lot of wine—and there’s only so much you can practically drink every month (unless you’re doing a lot of entertaining). That’s why we like Vinebox, which sends three or six glasses of wine a month, curated to the recipient’s tastes, whether they’re a wine newbie or full-fledged sommelier. The wines are sourced from vineyards worldwide—and including some you won’t find anywhere else. Price: Starts at $29/month with free shipping. Subscription duration: 1, 3 or 12 months. For more info take a look a

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



This & tHAT



Winn-Dixie at the Alabama Shakespeare Festival Because of Winn-Dixie based on the novel by Kate DiCamillo, will be presented January 27 through February 12. See it before it hits Broadway! Because of Winn-Dixie, the new musical by Tony-winning Spring Awakening songwriter Duncan Sheik and Tony-nominated Legally Blonde lyricist Nell Benjamin, is based on the (Newberry honor) children’s book of the same title. This charming story is all about a dog who brings new life and hope into a family as Opal Buloni and her preacher father settle in a new Southern town full of quirky characters. Recommended for ages nine and up. Ticket prices vary based on play, date, and availability of seating. For more information, call 334.271.5353. More information on Website: Alabama Shakespeare Festival, One Festival Drive, Montgomery, AL 36117

Volunteer This Year Whether an individual, group or corporation - HandsOn River Region is here to help you realize the benefit each and every person can be to their community. We coordinate and manage volunteer projects throughout the River Region for over 200 non-profits. And we’ve been doing this for over 40 years! Search for volunteer opportunities on our website or call us for assistance in locating the perfect volunteer opportunity for you! Get involved and Serve Today, visit or call 334.264.3335

22 BOOM!

January 2017

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

Optimism May Propel Women to a Longer Life Women who generally believe that good things will happen may live longer. That’s the suggestion of a new study that seems to affirm the power of positive thinking. “This study shows that optimism is associated with reduced risk of death from stroke, respiratory disease, infection and cancer,” said Eric Kim, co-lead author of the investigation. “Optimistic people tend to act in healthier ways. Studies show that optimistic people exercise more, eat healthier diets and have higher quality sleep,” said Kim, a research fellow in the department of social and behavioral sciences at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in Boston. Kim added that an upbeat outlook also may directly affect biological function. Research has demonstrated that higher optimism is linked with lower inflammation, healthier lipid levels (fats in the blood), and higher antioxidants (substances that protect cells from damage), Kim said. “Optimistic people also use healthier coping styles,” he said. “A summary of over 50 studies showed that when confronted with life challenges, optimists use healthier coping methods like acceptance of circumstances that cannot be changed, planning for further challenges, creating contingency plans, and seeking support from others when needed.” For this investigation, scientists reviewed records on 70,000 women who participated in a long-running health study that surveyed them every two years between 2004 and 2012. The study authors examined optimism levels and other factors that might affect the results, such as race, high blood pressure, diet and physical activity. Overall, the risk of dying from any disease analyzed in this study was almost 30 percent less among the most optimistic women compared to the least optimistic women.

from cancer was 16 percent lower; the risk of dying from heart disease, stroke or respiratory disease was almost 40 percent lower; and the risk of dying from infection was 52 percent lower, the study found. Levels of optimism were determined from responses to statements such as “In uncertain times, I usually expect the best,” according to Kim. While the study uncovered an association between optimism and life span, it did not prove cause and effect. Dr. Sarah Samaan, a cardiologist at the Heart Hospital at Baylor in Plano, Texas, said healthy behaviors may help fuel optimism. “It’s easier to feel optimistic when you feel healthy and energetic,” said Samaan, who was not involved in the research. “By choosing a healthy lifestyle, you may open yourself up to greater gratitude and create more energy for deeper relationships and professional satisfaction.” She added that for people with depression and anxiety, medication may help to improve mental outlook and thus overall health, although this study did not address that specific issue. The study authors noted that individual actions can promote optimism. The simple act of writing down best possible outcomes for careers, friendships and other areas of life could generate optimism and healthier futures, they suggested. Kim described a two-week exercise where people were asked to write acts of kindness they performed that day. Another activity involved writing down things they were grateful for every day. Both these exercises were shown to increase optimism, he said. The study was published online Dec. 7 in the American Journal of Epidemiology. Copyright © 2016 HealthDay. All rights reserved. SOURCES: Eric Kim, Ph.D., research fellow, department of social and behavioral sciences, department of epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health; Sarah Samaan, M.D., cardiologist and physician partner, Heart Hospital at Baylor in Plano, Texas; Dec. 7, 2016, American Journal of Epidemiology

For the most optimistic women, for instance, the risk of dying The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017




Brenda Hellums, Caring & Serving

This month’s BOOM! Cover Profile is Brenda Hellums. Brenda is a remarkable woman because she has a full plate to manage each day. She is the Director of Daily Money Management Services at Warren Averett CPAs and Advisors, a financial services firm operating in the Southeast. In addition to these responsibilities, Brenda is the caregiver for her husband Ed who was diagnosed with Lewy Body Dementia in 2010. She is on a unique journey serving many needs, a familiar journey some of you may understand. Brenda believes in serving...her community, her clients and most often, her husband. She says that’s the best way to find fulfillment and happiness. We recently spent some time with Brenda and enjoyed getting to know her. We think you’ll enjoy getting to know her too.

BOOM!: Please give us a brief biography, i.e. where were you born, education, what brought you to the Montgomery area, etc.? Brenda: I was born in Rockford, Illinois, the baby of nine children. I moved to Jasper, Alabama after my father passed away when I was thirteen. I met and married my husband, Ed of forty years in Jasper. We moved to Montgomery shortly after we were married, we have four daughters, four sons-in-law’s and fourteen grandchildren. BOOM!: You’re the Director of

24 BOOM!

January 2017

Brenda preparing to meet clients at Warren Averett

Daily Money Management Services at Warren Averett and a certified Professional Daily Money Manager (PDMM). How did you became involved in this field of work and what kind of services do you provide your clients? Brenda: I spent 25 plus years in the financial and banking industry which I believe prepared me for my

current position. I was recruited at the inception of the Daily Money Management Services for business development and implementation. I have the opportunity to provide personalized services for each client as an appointed advisor. I focus on a client’s personal needs and goals as no two are alike. I am able to save my clients time and relieve them of the stress of routine or complex responsibilities. The Daily Money Management Services that we offer run the gamut from personal and lifestyle support. We’re a concierge service at its best. Some of the most common services that clients utilize include expense management such as household bill paying, record keeping help with all banking and financial transactions, reporting of monthly financial activities, organized tax ledger for year-end tax preparation and domestic/caregiver payroll. We also provide oversight and assistance in

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

care for Ed? What can you share reviewing credit that others can learn from your cards and checking experience with this disease? accounts for unusual activity, client Brenda: Ed and I always had the alerts for account marriage where you saw one, you activity fluctuations saw the other. We enjoyed life and and evaluation of enjoyed each other’s company. We insurance coverage. shared a lot of fun times and shared Clients have utilized responsibilities. Ed was always so us in assisting with thoughtful and his family was his the sale/purchases priority. So as you can imagine when of homes and he was diagnosed in August 2010 automobiles. It’s of Lewy Body Dementia, our world very fulfilling to shattered. Prior to his diagnosis, know at the end of Respite Side By Side Choir with daughter Heather and husband Ed we had never heard of this disease. each day that I was factors interact so I can be a trusted After the shock and much research, I able to help make advisor. The certification itself won’t looked at him someone’s life a little easier. make you an expert in and said, “We a different profession, can do this!” BOOM!: You have another interesting but it enables you to We have certification that our readers better apply your existing persevered will be interested in and that is a professional knowledge to with the help Certified Senior Advisor. What are seniors. With that in mind, of family, our the benefits of being a CSA? Would I would highly recommend church family, you recommend other professionals the CSA Certification to friends and pursue this certification and where other professionals if they the Respite would they go to receive it? work with seniors. The Ministry at certification is issued by First United Brenda: A CSA Certification teaches the Society of Certified Methodist professionals how to build effective Senior Advisors. If Church. I relationships someone is cannot with seniors interested, express the by having a they can importance broad-based find more of the role knowledge Cabo San Lucas with daughter Nikki information Respite plays of the online on in his day to day life. It gives me health, social and financial issues that are important to them. Having this knowledge helps me understand how all of these

Brenda and daughter Tammie

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

BOOM!: Your husband and longtime sweetheart Ed has a unique form of dementia; would you share your experience with managing and caring for your husband? How has the Respite Ministry at First United Methodist Church helped you

great comfort to know he is not home alone, that he receives a hot meal each day and that he is loved and cared for by the outstanding volunteers. Furthermore, due to the mental and physical stimulation he receives at the Respite Ministry, our active family and our grandchildren, he has exceeded the life expectancy for this disease. BOOM!: With your many business and personal responsibilities do you

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



still have time to participate in community organizations, what are some of these organizations and their purposes? Also, please share the importance of serving others?

Most recently I am serving on the development committee for the Montgomery Area Council on Aging (MACOA). MACOA assists senior citizens by providing services to promote independent living and by offering opportunities to enhance quality of life.

BOOM!: How do you like to relax and wind down? Brenda: With work, a sick husband and family obligations there are minimal hours for rest and relaxation. However, in my rare moments of free time, I enjoy exercise as my stress buster and curling up on the couch watching crazed Lifetime movies.

I have previously served on the board of the Montgomery BOOM!: What do your future Museum of Fine Arts, past challenges look like, retirement, Brenda with granddaughter Katlyn council administrator business for the Montgomery growth, Brenda: Let me begin by saying Estate Planning Council, past community our community depends on our member of the Alabama service? involvement and it is up to us to Council of Association make a contribution to give back. Executives and past member Brenda: I of the Medical Group have always I have been active for many years Management Association. enjoyed with the Montgomery Area Chamber my field of of Commerce Total Resource BOOM!: Do you have a work and Campaign. The Chamber relies on favorite vacation spot? Any community the revenue from this campaign to travel dreams planned for the involvement. bring diverse programs throughout future? Giving back the year to the city of Montgomery. is extremely Brenda: Over the years, I important I am a member of The Kiwanis Club have been blessed to travel and I Brenda with granddaughter Taylor of Montgomery who is dedicated to out of the country, to Europe certainly meeting the needs of the youth in and many other tropical want to the River Region. The Kiwanis Club destinations. At this time in continue began its annual my life, our trips these efforts for many more years. fundraiser will remain close by founding to home. With that being said, I look forward the Alabama to a retirement that includes a National Fair. BOOM!: What tropical destination where the sun is are you most warm and the coffee is strong. I am a graduate passionate about of Leadership in your life? BOOM!: You have seen a lot of Montgomery, changes in Montgomery, especially in Class XXVII (the Brenda: There the downtown area, how would you best class ever). is not much I’m rate the quality of life in the River Leadership not passionate Region? What do we need more of? Montgomery about, however develops my family takes Brenda: The changes in the Brenda’s granddaughters Pruitt, Allie, Wilson leadership precedence over downtown area have been amazing, potential by most. As you can bringing new life and growth to bringing individuals who represent imagine with fourteen grandchildren the area. I love walking around ethnic, age and gender diversity to I stay consumed with their extra downtown and seeing people our community. curricular activities. from all walks of life enjoying the

26 BOOM!

January 2017

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

faith, my family and my friends. BOOM!: Give us three words that describe you?

The Hellums Family

revitalization that has taken place. I appreciate our city leaders and their vision for all of Montgomery. I think everyone agrees we have a need to improve the public school system. Montgomery will always be home, this is where we raised our family and have so many precious memories. It is a great place to live and raise a family. BOOM!: As you’ve aged, how have your priorities changed? Brenda: With age comes wisdom and the understanding of what is most important becomes clear, my priorities remain unchanged; my

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

Brenda: Perfection, Faithful, Charismatic. I asked some of my children and grandchildren, their words were Loving, Caring, Compassionate, Dependable, Selfless, Fun, Spontaneous, Ambitious and Godly. I guess that’s more than three.

had our share of tailgating in the sea of motorhomes at Auburn, fun times for sure. We actually escaped from our motorhome and watched it burn to the ground in 10 minutes! BOOM!: Many people over 50 are experiencing a renewed sense of purpose, new goals, new careers… How would you describe this sense of renewal in your life? Any advice for the rest of us seeking renewal? Brenda: We must always have a purpose, it’s what wakes us up every morning and keeps us going.

BOOM!: Do you have any hobbies or other activities that grab your attention? Brenda: Hobbies? What is that? Not conducive for this lifestyle unless you call Auburn football a hobby? War Eagle! We

Brenda and Ed visiting San Diego

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



give to others. You will live a happier and more fulfilled life, guaranteed. BOOM!: Technology is rooted in almost every aspect of our lives and some of us are reluctant to embrace it. How is your relationship with technology? How has it made your life and work more effective?

With granddaughter Hayden

So many people are lost once they retire from their life long job because that has been their entire focus. My purpose will always be to serve others. I am doing this now in my field of work and in my home life. It brings me great joy to do for others what they may not be able to do for themselves. The old saying, “it is more blessed to give than to receive,” if you need renewal, find a way to

Brenda: Warren Averett is always on the cutting edge of technology. It promotes efficiency and provides the opportunity for organic growth within our society. We should always be open to learning new things for advance and prosperity. Grandson - Corbin

War Eagle Brenda!

We want to thank Brenda for sharing her time helping us put together this month’s BOOM! Cover Profile. Brenda is a caregiver, a business woman and a community servant. She represents many of us and provides inspiration to care for others. If you what to learn more about Brenda, you can visit www. or drop her an email at As always, thanks to Jeri Hines and Haley Kintner, from Total Image Portraits for the professional cover photo of Brenda. If you have questions, comments or suggestions about our cover profiles, including nominating someone, please send them to

The Side by Side Singers are dedicated to sharing music to keep our minds strong. Music can improve our mood and boost cognitive skills. We invite those living with Alzheimer’s or dementia and their care-partners to join us for 8-week sessions each Tuesday, 1:00-2:00 pm at First United Methodist Church in Montgomery. The music we sing ranges from Sinatra to Elvis. photo by Mickey Welsh/Montgomery Advertiser

SIDEbySIDE singers singers

Please contact Jack Horner at or Laura Selby at 834-8990 for more information. 28 BOOM!

January 2017



2416 W. Cloverdale Park Montgomery, AL 36106 334.834.8990

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



Ask an Elder Law Attorney

By: Raley L. Wiggins | Attorney at Law | Red Oak Legal, PC

Holiday Burnout

I am finally sitting down to write this installment of Ask an Elder Law Attorney the day before Boom! is due to go to the printer. Between the hustle and bustle of the holidays and wrapping up 2016, it seems like there is always one thing left to do. If your family is like mine, then every Christmas gathering is a picture-perfect string of joyful reunions with family, fit for a Norman Rockwell painting. ‘Tis the season for rest and relaxation, when nothing will ever go wrong—right?

his rounds in Montgomery. That famous red velvet suit is great for the dry freezing tundra of the North Pole, but isn’t the ideal outerwear for piloting an open-top sleigh through the torrential rain and heat we enjoyed this year.

But here we are, Christmas is behind us and 2017 starts anew. Most of us march into the new year confident (or at least hopeful) that the mistakes or unexpected developments of last year are safely behind us.

Well, not exactly. This year our family was lucky to get to visit with my parents and siblings, as well as my wife’s family. But we had a few bumps along the way, too. A nice little Christmas Virus spent the last couple of weeks working its way through When will we ever learn? the family. A Christmas Eve trip to the In my office, I typically help families in pediatrician was followed by a Christmas Day scramble Estate Planning and Asset Protection Workshop to refill our Wednesday, January 25: Hosted by Red Oak Legal, PC: 1:30-3:30 oldest child’s pm at the Archibald Senior Center (MACOA) in Montgomery. This asthma medicine. educational workshop presented by local attorney Raley L. Wiggins But at least it covers wills, trusts, powers of attorney, advance directives, living culminated in wills, probate administration, protecting assets from creditors, our own little bankruptcy, divorce and remarriage, nursing homes, long-term care “Christmas and Medicaid qualification. Registration is required. Miracle” when Call 334-625-6774 today to reserve your seat or register online at we found the one pharmacy in town that’s open on Christmas Day. (If you’re curious, it’s the two situations. The first is when we help Walgreens on Ann Street!) people plan ahead. The second group are what we call “crises” cases. Crises Medicine refilled and little lungs cleared, cases are when a family is faced with we all finally settled down to rest and an immediate or imminent need for our enjoy the rest of Christmas day. You assistance. A loved one has passed away know, snuggled in front of the fire with a and their estate must be settled; a parent warm cup of hot chocolate. Except that or grandparent is about to enter a nursing instead of the fire, we were cranking up home and needs to figure out how to pay the AC to fight the sticky eighty-degree for it; a loved one can no longer manage weather that made the holiday feel their own affairs and needs a guardian or more like Christmas in July. Frankly, I’m conservator to be appointed, just to list a surprised old Saint Nick managed to make few examples.

Attend Free Workshop

30 BOOM!

January 2017

Even though we see crisis cases in our office every day, it’s difficult to convince people that this will ever happen to their families. That is, there will always be another day, a better time, a perfect time to get around to getting one’s affairs in order, or helping mom or dad to plan to care for themselves in their old age. Some people just aren’t in a hurry to plan ahead. Every year we think that Christmas will be just like that Norman Rockwell image in our mind—a reliving of all of our most precious childhood holiday memories. And every year we have to relearn the lessons of the year before, that despite our best planning there will never be a “perfect” holiday, a perfect Christmas party, a perfect Christmas card, a perfect photo to post on Facebook or Instagram. My wish for all of you this year is that you will be a little wiser than you were last year. I hope that the lessons learned in 2016 will not have to be relearned in 2017. I hope that you all stick to your resolutions for 2017, and finally achieve the perfect image of yourself that you see in your mind. But I also hope that you’ll learn the lesson that we see our clients learning over and over again—you can’t plan for everything, but having a plan sure beats the alternative. Raley L. Wiggins Attorney at Law, Red Oak Legal, PC 334-239-3625 | 445 Dexter Avenue, ste 9000, Mont, AL 36104

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine


“Dreams Do Come True!” Elder Couple Celebrates 60th Wedding Anniversary at Walt Disney World

Resort. We felt the Crisps deserved to see ‘The Most Magical Place On Earth.’”

– Imagine celebrating your diamond wedding anniversary with hundreds on Main Street U.S.A at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. For 84-year-old Donald Crisp, and his wife, 81-year-old Christine Crisp, both residents at Riverview Health Care in Prestonsburg, Ky., the fantasy recently became a reality. Following a surprise 60th wedding anniversary party planned by Riverview staff on Aug. 25, the facility gifted the Crisps with a fully paid trip to the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Fla., Nov. 7-10, courtesy of Signature HealthCARE’s Elder Vacation program. “For many people, an annual vacation is something they may take for granted. For our residents, a vacation is something they may not take at all,” said Angie McAllister, director of quality of life and culture change for Signature HealthCARE. “We want our Elder Vacation program to fulfill our residents’ dreams, giving them experiences of a lifetime and helping them not only exist but thrive. We are grateful for the fundraising at each facility, which makes the trips possible.” Prior to becoming Riverview residents, the Crisps traveled across the country. Donald Crisp preached at churches in more than 15 states. In mid-2016, Christine Crisp was admitted to Riverview following a broken hip, and then Donald Crisp joined her only

32 BOOM!

January 2017

two weeks later following a fall and an injury to his head. Now, they are roommates at the center. The couple is actively involved at Riverview. At mealtimes, they can be found together at the café, conversing among themselves and their fellow residents. Other times, they can be found singing with the choir or attending church services. Donald has even preached a few times at the center. “In addition to the Crisps celebrating a milestone anniversary, we chose the couple to participate in the Elder Vacation program because they inspire others,” said Phillip Ramey, director of spirituality at Riverview. “Plus, though they traveled to many places, they never visited the Walt Disney World


The Crisps joined a group of about 100 young-atheart elders from Kentucky and Tennessee Signature HealthCARE facilities at the Walt Disney World Resort for an action-packed and a memory-making

“I never dreamed in a million years we would live in a nursing home,” said Christine Crisp, “and I sure never dreamed that nursing home would take us to Walt Disney World!” Perhaps, the most memorable moment of the trip for the Crisps was when they exchanged a kiss in front of Cinderella Castle on Main Street, U.S.A. Donald Crisp sported Mickey Mouse groom ears and Christine Crisp donned Minnie Mouse bride ears. Hundreds of people stopped, gathered and cheered for them. “I witnessed the beauty of love in

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

its purest form as Mr. and Mrs. Crisp kissed in front of Cinderella Castle,” said McAllister. “I stood with other spectators in awe of their love and felt so many emotions as they shared a look that only years of understanding and persistence can bring. The Crisps rightfully deserved the spotlight as many stood captivated by the beauty of the moment.”

Digital & Interactive

The Digital & Interactive version was built for the new you so go ahead and sign up for a free subscription at

The Crisps also enjoyed a photo shoot inside Cinderella Castle – pictures they can treasure for the rest of their lives. In addition to the special anniversary activities, the Crisps delighted in the sights and scenes of the Walt Disney World Resort with their fellow elders. Excitement was in the air when the group arrived at their hotel – Disney’s Victorian-esque Grand Floridian Resort & Spa. The jubilation continued as the group was privileged to enjoy the first Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party of the year, a highlight for everyone who attended. The Crisp’s Signature HealthCARE group also attended the Epcot® International Food and Wine Festival. “It was a 60-year wedding anniversary people like us could only dream of,” said Donald Crisp. The Walt Disney World Resort trip was the latest in a string of 15 excursions in the Elder Vacation program, which began in 2011, and has experienced steady growth in the number of those participating since then. “Many of our residents are from rural communities and have not ever had the opportunity to walk the beach, view the mountains or take in the sights of a theme park,” McAllister said. “Through our resident vacation program, we make these dreams come true and open the door to adventure.”

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



Record Your Family Lore By Treva Lind

During the holidays or anytime families get together is always a good time to record your relative’s histories. That’s the advice of Beryl Pielli, who years ago, taped interviews with her mother, Alice Pruett Bell, about life in the farming town of Wilbur, Wash. “With family get togethers, it’s so important to gather information from elders and record it,” said Pielli, 73. “I met with my mother in Wilbur and recorded stories that all seven of us siblings grew up hearing. She had a sense of humor and was a great storyteller. “I was so afraid I wouldn’t get it written down before she died, and I could never remember all the stories she told.” Later transcribed into a written form, Bell’s stories led to gifts across generations more than once. Pielli and her husband, Leonard, worked with family to compile the oral history into a spiral-bound book given as an 85th birthday present to Bell, who teared up upon receiving it. Years later, Pielli again teamed up with family and computer-savvy friends on an expanded manuscript with even more family photos to create a book she had printed locally. At $7 a copy through Spokane’s Gray Dog Press, “Bell Family Memories” went to multiple relatives at a July 2012 family reunion. Pielli also gave one copy to a historical society. While a manuscript is one way to preserve family histories, smartphones and technology offer some fasttracked ways to capture memories that fit around busy lives, said Liberty Lake resident Stacy Julian, 51, who also gathers relatives’ stories to forge connections.

34 BOOM!

January 2017

Beryl and Leonard Pielli laugh while they look over the early drafts and final copies of the book they wrote about Beryl’s family, the Bells of Wilbur, Wash. It was a labor of love for the two, who used many sources to tell the family’s story. (Jesse Tinsley/The Spokesman-Review/TNS)

Julian, a mother of five, worked in the scrapbooking industry for 25-plus years and was founding editor of Simple Scrapbooks magazine. Today, she teaches about ancestry storytelling methods, including at the annual RootsTech convention on the convergence of technology and family history. “I’m trying to make family history simple,” said Julian, who has visual reminders of ancestors’ stories in her home. One of Julian’s favorite tools to get started: create a one-page questionnaire to give relatives by email or at family gatherings. Her family information sheet asks for basics of full name, birthplace and date, but also other tidbits. Relatives list favorites for a color, song, holiday, and place to visit. The form asks relatives to share the

name of someone they admire and why, a “life’s work,” notable accomplishment, and three words that best describe them. “The beauty of it is someone can fill the sheet out in about a minute,” Julian said. “Before I see family, I print out a bunch and make them do it. People love to write about themselves, if it’s simple.” In 1994, Julian asked her husband’s grandfather, Russell Julian, to fill out a family sheet and she later filed it away. After Russell Julian died, her husband was asked to eulogize his grandfather. The history form helped bridge memories, including a favorite song, she said. “Afterward, Russell’s daughters came up to my husband and said, ‘How did you know what his favorite hymn was?’ “We talk to each other, and love each other, but we maybe don’t have these things written down.”

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

Julian once heard a story that her great-great-grandfather Joseph Hall kept stick candy on a clock shelf to give to grandchildren. With research, she ordered old-fashioned candy in a tin, put his picture inside each lid, and gave them out at a family reunion. She also wrote a one-page story about him. Pielli suggests that if people are compiling family archives, they keep information and photos in one place. That way, they can add more details as time allows. In capturing stories, Pielli found details on her father, William Bell, being registered as a member of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of the Flathead Nation. He and her mother also ran several Wilbur businesses, some still in existence. “My parents had a restaurant, a bakery, a little motel, a drive-in hamburger place, trailer court and laundromat,” Pielli said. “It used to be the main route to Grand Coulee before the freeway went in.” Her friends who helped compile a formal manuscript used computer software to repair the images of old, damaged photos, Pielli said. Later, all photos were saved to a computer disc, with copies attached inside of the book’s back page. “Another thing that helps is your local historical society,” Pielli said. “If you’re going to do a book, give one to your local historical society.” Pielli’s adult children have enjoyed the family lore. “I think if you’re interested at all in family history, it trickles down. If someone doesn’t record it, they’ll lose it.” For old family photos, Julian suggests also using a smartphone camera to capture original images as time permits. She uploads the smartphone images to an ancestry website, such as, and later adds facts and history for each picture.

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

Other invited family members can see the information online, and it’s another way to preserve photos. “Once they’re uploaded, then once a week or once a month, I’ll add descriptions,” Julian said. Using a StoryCorps app is another way to record family oral histories, she said, with a built-in script and questions. People can save a recording on a smartphone, or it can go to the Library of Congress. Another quick tool Julian uses is a Chatbooks app, and the Chatbooks business creates monthly family story books with photos. For an $8-per-month subscription, Chatbooks mails Julian the book of photos and her accompanying written posts she puts on Instagram. The service can link to Facebook, and users receive an email with the option of editing items before each month’s book is published, Julian said. Extras can be printed to give as gifts. “The books are 60 pages,” she said. “I like Instagram because you’ve already taken time to put in some written information for each Instagram. Then I go in and hit edit, and I can take photos out, and I can add more details, before it’s printed. “I control it, but it’s in the background. You can just take pictures of your old pictures. You do have to pay attention to editing, like if you have a video in there, it will print it as a black square.” Julian sometimes posts a decadesold photo and writes a few details for “Throwback Thursdays” on Instagram. Family members see the images and comment, adding more connections, she said. “The No. 1 question I get is, ‘I’ve got all these old photos, what do I do?’ You pick up the smartphone; they have goodquality cameras anymore. You put the old photo on a floor in front of a window with nature light and take a picture of a picture. You’re not scanning; that’s overwhelming.”

A smartphone also is useful for its standard voice recorder to capture family dialogue when an aunt or grandparent shares a memory, she said. “I think the important reasons to do that are the family stories and connections. Once you realize you have a connection, and you feel it, then you’re motivated to learn about a person.” That was true when her own sons were very young, and Julian first heard details about a great-grandmother named Minnie, who raised 10 boys. “I started to dive in and learn about Minnie. I was 28 years old and I didn’t even know her. I later learned she’d bake cookies and put them in big five-gallon honey tin.” Julian found a smaller antique honey tin, and when she bakes cookies, they go into her tin that she sets out on the kitchen counter. Her kids know what the tin’s appearance means, and something about grandma Minnie, she said. “She’s the honey-tin grandma. Honestly, they’re not interested until they’re older, but they have enough interest now if you create connections. It’s like a seed’s been planted. Then they’ll discover connections.”

Family Story-Telling Resources: National Archives, “How to Preserve Family Papers and Photographs”: preservation/ family-archives/digitizing.html

StoryCorps: Chatbooks: Library of Congress, “Personal Archiving”: personalarchiving/ (c)2016 The Spokesman-Review (Spokane, Wash.) Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

Digital & Interactive free subscriptions

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



Travel Trending with Kathy Witt

The BUTLER Does It Need a favorite literary tome fetched? A cooling cloth spritzed with a custom fragrance for your sun-warmed brow? The in-room bar restocked with your preferred wines? This is your vacation, after all, your time to relax, recharge and focus on yourself. It’s only fitting that you have what you want, when you want to have it.

out assistance, arranging of airport transfers, even golf spike detailing. ‘An investment

in knowledge pays the best interest’

The Commons Hotel, www. commonshotel. com, located near downtown Minneapolis, Minn., lives what Benjamin Franklin Your butler is here At Falling Rock at Nemacolin Woodlands Resort, the butler is on 24 hours a day to ensure a perfect stay. wrote in 1758. and reporting for (Kimberly Reed Photography/Nemacolin Woodlands Resort) At this 304-room duty. property on the But back to the butler. While you sip campus of the University of Minnesota, coffee or tea, the butler will assess the Bed, bath and beyond lovers of literature can get lost in a daily weather forecast. He’ll review your beloved classic or a bestseller. The itinerary, perhaps lay out your attire No need to get up. Each morning, the hotel’s resident Book Butler delivers for the day. In the evening, you’ll have butler at tony 42-room Falling Rock the desired reading the Bath and Pillow arrives at your guestroom with the material right to your Menu and Cookie and requested coffee, juices and/or teas, room. Not only that, Milk Turndown to look all prepared to preference, draws he also leaves literary forward to, the latter of the blinds, then pours the wake-up quotes on guests’ which includes warm beverages and serves them while you pillows at turndown homemade Belgium lounge atop luxe sheets and hand-sewn and delivers Sudoku chocolate chip cookies chenille bedding. puzzles with each inand a chilled pint of room breakfast order. local milk from Turner’s A five-star boutique hotel at Nemacolin Dairy Farm, served at Woodlands Resort in Farmington, Pa., Taking its design the requested hour., Falling Rock, an cues from a geekhomage to the organic architectural chic aesthetic, think All of this is part of the style of Frank Lloyd Wright, has just smart, sophisticated resort’s 24-hour butler about everything you could conjure up step apart and service that includes for the perfect getaway, including fine plenty of art, the everything from farm-to-table and casual dining, golf, hotel’s public spaces unpacking and packing spa, casino, heated outdoor infinity feel more living of luggage, ironing and pool and a full roster of year-round room than lobby. steaming of garments, activities, arrayed on 2,000 acres in Everywhere there is shoe shining and the Laurel Highlands of the Allegheny chalk art, paintings and books. Lighting drawing a decadent bath in a 200-gallon Mountains. is via molecular-designed chandeliers soaking tub to 24-hour in-room beneath tin-press ceilings and against dining service, check-in and check-

36 BOOM!

January 2017

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

Diamond-level living

a brick wall backdrop. Seating vignettes anchored by a statement fireplace invite cozy conversation. Guestrooms coddle with a homey atmosphere, 500-thread count linens and a rain shower accented with brown leather, blue velvet and argyle.

With the Caribbean Sea before you and mangrove forests behind, it can feel delightfully remote at Mexico’s Royalton Riviera Cancun, www. Removing you even further from the hassles and hubbub of life is Hideaway, the super-indulgent resortwithin-the-resort that grants guests even more privacy.

The hotel also offers a state-of-theart fitness center, complimentary access to the university’s Recreation and Wellness Center and playful experiences centered on literature, art and science – including flights of local brew and alchemist mixology lessons at The Beacon Public House.

Poolside pampering How can a five-star Hawaiian beach resort experience improve on its laurels? The brand new Four Seasons Oahu at Ko Olina, www.fourseasons. com/oahu, has figured it out, and it’s called the Tanning Butler. The Tanning Butler visits each of the resort’s three pools and private lagoon on a regular basis, offering 30 SPF and 50 SPF hair conditioning spray and sunscreen, tanning oil and zinc for guests. In addition, the Tanning Butler calls on the adult pool each afternoon with custom-scented cool towels and Mai Tai, and it’s all complimentary. Presenting a beautiful balance of classic Hawaiian style, authentic Hawaiian tradition and oneof-a-kind luxury, this 371-room sanctuary is located on the island’s lush and wild western coast.

Yet another coddling step away from it all are exclusive Diamond Club services, including a personal butler, and one who knows what you need: The Tanning Butler visits poolside with all sorts of guest amenities, packing and unpacking of including cocktails. (Four Seasons Oahu at Ko Olina) your luggage; ironing a set Guests find their serenity in the ocean of clothing; stocking (and views, the ancient Hawaiian healing restocking daily) the mini-bar with your therapies of the Naupaka Spa and favorite wine and spirits; a beach area relaxation experiences that include reserved just for you; a pillow menu sunrise yoga overlooking the beach. and more. Indoor/outdoor dining venues specialize in sustainable, local foods and take their Onsite amusements are water sports, culinary inspiration from the islands and fitness programs and poolside mixology its people. And then there’s the Tanning classes; three adults-only swimming Butler and those deliciously cooling pools; a private lounge with breakfast, towels, fragranced with the scent he hors d’oeuvres and desserts; plus, a created. variety of shops, spa, night club and

casino. Dining choices include Mexican, Mediterranean, American steakhouse, Italian, Tex-Mex, seafood and more. Your butler will make reservations and escort you, bouncing you to the front of the queue to be seated immediately. Upgraded accommodations include luxury suites with a massive Jacuzzi-fortwo, rain shower and swim-out pool. (The butler will prepare the Jacuzzi for you.) Also, your room will be perfumed with the aroma therapy scent you selected at check-in. There really is no reason to leave the resort…ever.

World-class dining, incomparable entertainment and sunset champagne toasts add to the allure of Hideaway at the Royalton Riviera Cancun. (Royalton Riviera Cancun)

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

Author, travel and lifestyle writer, and travel goods expert Kathy Witt feels you should never get to the end of your bucket list; there’s just too much to see and do in the world. She can be reached at or (c)2016 Kathy Witt Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



January Featured Artists

Low Country Marshes 20x24 oil on canvas, Anne Hugghins

Study for Lamp Lit 17x22 watercolor, Clint Herring Cooking Up a Storm 30x30 oil on canvas, Anita Westerberg

Wild Heart 60x48 mixed media, Cecily Hulett

Aw Shucks, 30x24 oil on canvas Pamela Wesley Copeland Checkmate 40x30 oil on canvas, John Wagnon

Moon Series: Rampant 3x16 copper sculpture, Bradley Moon

A Seriously Cereus night 12x24 oil on canvas Trish Gober Idle wild III 36x36 mixed media, Carol Barksdale

Sylacauga Marble Bowl 2�x12� marble sculpture, Ken Lever

Visit Gallery One Fine Art 423 Cloverdale Road, Montgomery Gallery Director Sandi Aplin,

The Golden Hour 24x30 acrylic on canvas, Shirley Esco

By Sandi Aplin

Art & Soul

Gallery One presents Art & Fashion

Carlisle and Per Se Collections New York We are so excited about our 17TH Trunk Show with Carlisle Collection New York. The Spring Collection will arrive here at Gallery One Fine Art beginning January 27th and remain through February 5th. The collection is shown by appointment and we try to give our customers at least an hour to make their selections and process their orders. The beautiful pieces selected for our invitation are from Carlisle Collection and they are the Marrakesh blouse with the Pearl pants. Our Marrakesh 100% silk georgette blouse ties with circle bead tassels. This is a very feminine look it has semi-fitted lines, V-neck, long sleeves with pleating and a slit with one button at each cuff. A straight hemline with side slits, back yoke with shirring and Hidden White mother of pearl buttons made of troca shell featuring tassel tie in dyed to match Bone and topstitch detail. The Marrakesh blouse is shown with the Pearl 100% silk pant in the dyed to match Bone color. Wide leg pants in silk georgette with a smooth waist, the classic fit sits 1� below the natural waist, no crease, shaped with back darts. It has a side seam opening with invisible zipper and inner button closure. These pants are fully lined in Bone soft crepe de chine.

style still matters, we invite our customers to feel extraordinary with our handcrafted artisanal designs. Our casual to cocktail look is available in sizes 0 to 18. Carlisle Spring 2017 takes sophistication and style to a new level. Inspired by the glamour of confident women, this carefully curated collection features unique artisanal pieces for your wardrobe. The line offers imported Italian leather and laces, exquisite handcrafted embroideries, supple hand worked

feathers and luxurious woven materials. Each piece has been designed with care and consideration to satisfy our clients every desire. Make a private appointment to experience luxury styling. Remember we also have eight Carlisle Cashmere knit tops and nine Carlisle Silk Cashmere tops, they are in a variety of styles and wonderful colors! Make a private appointment to experience luxury styling with this beautiful designer collection. Sandi Aplin, Director of Gallery One Fine Art A freelance writer living in Montgomery, AL or

Carlisle New York celebrates the style, strength and cosmopolitan spirit of busy women everywhere. Women wearing Carlisle feel

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



The Mayor of BOOMTOWN


By Greg Budell

There is no safe space here. The Russians have NOT hacked this column.

Re-runs work on TV, but rarely in the magazine biz. However, one year ago, in this space I explained my intrigue with the candidacy of Donald Trump. A year later my words seem prescient. He will be our next President. I hope he builds TWO walls- one, to make sure we know who’s coming and going in America, and a second for the traumatized, infantilized snowflakes to pound on when they don’t get their way. He might want to build the second wall first. Happy New Year. I believe it’s going to be a good one! Greg Budell’s BOOM! Column from January 2016

On January 20, 1961 our 3rd grade teacher, Miss Martin, gathered us together and led us into the gymnasium at John Hancock Elementary school on Chicago’s southwest side. The school was newly built, each classroom packed with 30-35 little BOOMERS. Orderly little Boomers. Whispering to a classmate during a lesson could draw an admonition from Miss Martin, and if repeated, a visit with our Principal, Miss Castle (a real pickle puss if there ever was one!). All the classes had been called to the gymnasium (also known as a 1960 Media Center) because the teachers thought we should watch the Inauguration of President John F, Kennedy on our big screen TV (24 inches of black and white Zenith!) with the volume turned on full tilt. So there we sat, watching, but totally oblivious to the speech’s content or significant moments, in part because 60s gym acoustics made it darn near impossible to understand what was being said in the ceremony. It was all ambient noise echoing around the gym’s tiled walls. So, at the time, the significance of these words spoken by JFK was lost on us, “And so, my fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country. My fellow citizens of the world, ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of man.” Wow. Freedom. Love of country. Service. How quaint! JFK’s win was narrow, and frankly, assisted by voters from the same Chicago cemeteries who have carried other politicians to victory both locally and nationally. He had to overcome a significant prejudice to win, too. He was a Catholic (OMG) and many believed he would be taking direct orders from the Vatican. Seems silly now, doesn’t it? After the speech none of us really heard, we returned to our classrooms to resume what we were urged to achieve- good grades, so we could one day get good jobs and be rich! Just like that older Boomer, Donald Trump! Two things I don’t do well- predictions. And predictions. Let me stick my neck out here and say when 2016 comes to an end we could be anticipating the inauguration of President Donald Trump.

40 BOOM!

January 2017

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

No? Eight years ago America fell in love with an outsider so full of himself he’d written 2 autobiographies before anyone knew his name. He had no experience at running so much as a lemonade stand. We put him in charge of the country because we liked him. Just like JFK, the current president is a Democrat but in reality, he’s a DINO, Democrat in Name Only. JFK launched his term with a huuuge tax cut. The man currently living at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, who we will refer to as “Resident”, has raised taxes on everything. I never watched a single episode of Celebrity Apprentice. Reality shows hold no appeal to me because I am my own reality show. I never liked Donald Trump much as a TV celebrity but always respected his accomplishments. He REALLY did what Miss Martin and all the other teachers at Hancock Elementary urged us to do- become successful. Our teachers at Hancock also taught us that “turnabout is fair play”. Every time the Resident President has screwed up- even forgetting the number of states in the US- his water carriers looked the other way while the rest of us tore our hair out. I must admit the Great Fun of 2015’s pre-pre-election run up, has been President Elect, Donald J. Trump watching Donald Trump’s popularity grow when we were told by The Media he’s “really done it this time!”. The Donald screwed up! Did you hear what he said? What he has done, repeatedly, is violate the unwritten laws of Political Correctness. He has given voice to what we’re constantly lectured not to think, but think anyway. You see, the lesson learned in 2015 is that almost everyone “representing” us in Washington DC, is not representing us at all. They are taking their orders from the donor$ who put them there. Congress wrapped up 2015 by fully funding the failures of the last 7 years and continuing to grow our enormous debt. Resident President once called Bush 2 “unpatriotic for adding 4 trillion dollars to the deficit all by his lonesome”. Resident has DOUBLED that so what does that make him? Worse- the people elected to reverse this course- TWICE- and had the Constitutional authority to reverse it- did NOTHING but rubber stamp it. One of the few who truly serves is our own Senator Jeff Sessions. He said, after the latest spending spree, “it’s no wonder the American people are in open rebellion!” He’s right. The Open Rebellion is upon us and as we launch the year, a man who owes nothing to nobody is out in front and scaring the beejeebers out of both parties, because he is one guy who could end their party. How nice, if one year from now, media centers in schools could echo these words, “Let us go forth to lead the land we love, asking His blessing and His help, but knowing that here on earth God’s work must truly be our own.” Those are the final words of JFK in ’61. I’ll settle for the 4 words on Trumps’ hat - MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN. That would be HUUUGE! Greg Budell lives in Montgomery with his wife, children and dogs. He’s a 30 year veteran of radio who hosts the Newstalk 93.1FM Morning Show with Rich Thomas, Jay Scott & LaDonna Brooks, 6-9AM Monday-Friday. He returns weekday afternoons from 3-6PM for Happy Hour with sidekick Joey Clark. Greg can be reached at Greg can be reached at Greg Budell's column is proudly sponsored by McDonald & Hagen Wealth Management

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



Eating Smart with Tracy Bhalla

History of Peppermint We could all use a little digestive help after the over-indulgences of the Holiday Season, and who would have expected it could be so simple? Peppermint extract and peppermint oil are used both in baking and in multiple household everyday items to flavor and fragrance a variety of things from cookies and hot chocolate to soap, toothpaste, and mouthwashes. Peppermint is a sterile, hybrid plant that’s made up of a blend of water mint and spearmint. First known to be cultivated in England during the seventeenth century, its popularity grew to the point where it’s now cultivated all over the world, though it remains indigenous to Europe. In the United States, Oregon is the leader in peppermint production, accumulating nearly 35 percent of the nation’s total supply. PEPPERMINT IN FOOD PRODUCTS Peppermint has a cool and refreshing menthol flavor, which is why it’s often found in gums, mints, and oral care products since it provides a super clean feeling. Peppermint leaves can also be used to make tea and other flavor extracts. In particular, it tastes great with chocolate and is often featured in many baked goods and hot beverages like mint hot chocolate and mochas. All by themselves, fresh peppermint leaves have just a few calories. It’s always best to source fresh peppermint for food purposes since the flavor will be more intense. When storing, simply wrap the leaves in a damp paper towel and place into a plastic bag. If there are any noticeable dark spots or yellowing, that’s your clue that it’s time to throw them out. Dried mint or peppermint extract can remain good for up to twelve months if kept in a cool dark place. The antimicrobial properties in peppermint have been seen to impact digestive issues, too. These compounds have been studied for their ability to activate an anti-pain channel in the colon that can reduce pain and spasms. This might be able to provide some relief for upset stomach, diarrhea,

42 BOOM!

January 2017

gas, cramps, nausea, vomiting, even morning sickness. One of the most effective ways to receive these benefits is by drinking peppermint tea, which steeps the leaves with water for a warming drink. While you can source the leaves yourself, you can also buy boxed tea bags to make it more convenient. OTHER USES FOR PEPPERMINT Peppermint may also be found in your medicine cabinet. Although not a medically-approved remedy, essential peppermint oil can be therapeutic in a number of ways. Peppermint oil is extracted using a distilling process, and this oil contains a significant amount of menthol and menthone, which together provide a calming and cooling effect on the body. The essential oil is very strong and I would not advise you to use it straight out of the bottle without diluting it in a carrier oil first – simple olive oil or coconut oil are just fine. As a general rule 2 to 3 drops of essential oil per tablespoon of carrier. Here are just some of the ways it’s been used by people as a natural remedy: _Tension headaches Rubbing some diluted peppermint oil at the temples may ease the throbbing pain of a tension headache in the frontal lobes. Keep it away from the eyes. _Muscle pain When applied topically to sore spots, the cooling sensation can help to soothe tired muscles, an achy back, and painful joints. You can also add a few drops of oil to hot water in the tub for a soothing bath. _Itchiness Mix peppermint oil with lavender oil (again, diluted) to help cool and calm

itchiness or redness caused by minor irritations. In the case of bug bites, peppermint has also been tried by some as a natural repellent. Try adding some drops of essential peppermint oil to a water bottle, dilute it, and then spray on your body as a way to turn away mosquitoes. You can also spray in corners of the home to try and ward off ants and other insects, too. _Sunburn The refreshing properties of mint help to provide a cooling sensation that can draw the heat away from sunburns and take away some of the sting after being exposed. _Respiratory ailments Peppermint has also been seen to act as a natural decongestant and expectorant (which is often why it’s used in vapor rubs to help clear up nasty coughs and colds). Add a few drops of the oil to a diffuser, and breathe in the mist to help open up airways and possibly alleviate sinus pain as well. _Oral care Wonder why peppermint is always added to toothpaste? It’s for more than just the flavor. Peppermint can help to freshen breath and possibly prevent cavities. Its antimicrobial properties help keep toxins away that could otherwise build up and contribute to dental issues. Peppermint mouthwash, floss, gum, and mints also do the same trick, as does just chewing on peppermint leaves. One of the most effective ways to receive these benefits is by drinking peppermint tea, which steeps the leaves with water for a warming drink. While you can source the leaves yourself, you can also buy boxed tea bags to make it more convenient. What an amazing oil! If you want to find out more, you can use this link. area/shop-online/category/essential-oils/ product/2172/peppermint-essential-oil-0-34-fl-oz/ Tracy Bhalla, Independent Consultant with NYR Organics, website: email: You can also visit Tracy’s blog at, Continuing my obsession with all things organic, I have been working with NYR for two years now, using their skincare products myself for over 25 years! Your skin is the body’s largest organ, it deserves to be well looked after. I am here to answer any questions you may have.

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

Alan Rickman role is underappreciated and connected to Montgomery by Coke Ellington

In all of the tributes to actor Alan Rickman after his death, I was surprised to see very little mention of my favorite among his movies.

by Katie McCabe. I would go so far as to say that without McCabe’s nearly 9,500-word 1989 Washingtonian article, the movie would never have been made.

He performed in the Harry Potter series, “Die Hard,” Love Actually” and “Truly, Madly, Deeply,” among many others.

I first discovered the magazine article printed in a textbook, “Feature Writing: The Pursuit of Excellence” by Edward Jay Friedlander and John Lee.

Mine might be a minority opinion, but I think his greatest role was as Dr. Alfred Blalock in “Something the Lord Made,” for which he earned an Emmy nomination. If you haven’t seen this 2004 HBO movie, I recommend it highly.

I accidentally happened upon the movie in a Tallahassee, Florida, video rental store when my wife and I were visiting our daughter. The one-word difference between the article and movie titles caught my eye and we enjoyed watching the video.

If you’re planning on seeing it, there might be spoilers below, but I prefer to think of them as enticements to watch him and his fellow actors perform. I’ve probably watched this movie more than any other I’ve ever seen, because I’ve let students watch it in a feature writing class every semester for about 20 years.

relationship between the two didn’t always run smoothly.

In the movie, as in real life, Blalock was a brilliant but irritable surgeon, whose life work involved treating maladies such as surgical shock and blue-baby syndrome. His “superb technician” was Vivien Thomas, whose dreams of going to college and medical school were dashed by the depression. Mos Def portrayed Thomas in the movie.

The title of article and movie is in the ending of the feature story. As described in the autobiography of Thomas, there was little evidence that an incision had been made in the heart: “Dr. Blalock finally broke the silence by asking, ‘Vivien, are you sure you did this?’ I answered in the affirmative, and then after a pause he said, ‘Well, this looks like something the Lord made.’”

Thomas perfected surgery on dogs before Blalock did similar surgery on humans, although the 34-year working

The DVD case says the movie is, “Based in part on the magazine article ‘Like Something the Lord Made’

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

Later on in feature writing class, I had some To Be Announced dates on the tentative class schedule. I asked for suggestions and one student suggested we watch a movie. At first, I thought that was ridiculous, but I soon realized the connection between the feature and the movie would make it worthwhile There’s even a Montgomery connection to the story. The feature story says Dr. Levi Watkins, the first black graduate of Vanderbilt University Medical School “is everything Vivien Thomas might have been, had he been born 40 years later.” Watkins father was president of Alabama State University, and the campus library is named after Levi Watkins Sr.

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



January 2017

{12 Things} for active boomers and beyond

MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA Denial at The Capri The Capri Theatre January 6-11

Deborah Lipstadt (Weisz), a Jewish historian at Emory University, is sued for libel after she writes a book about the Holocaust by David Irving (Spall), who proudly lists “holocaust denier” on his resume. Since he sues her in British court, the burden of proof is on Lipstadt to prove the Holocaust happened. It seems easy enough, but Irving is just as determined to prove his version of history as she is to prove its reality. What would seem to be an open and shut case turns in to a white-knuckle legal thriller as the attorneys are forced to “prove” history. For info call 334.262.4858 or visit

MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA Sneak Preview, PBS Victoria

Alabama Department of Archives and History

Tuesday, January 10, 5:30 pm

The Alabama Department of Archives and History will host a free, sneak preview screening of the highly anticipated, new PBS drama, Victoria. Archives Textile Curator Ryan Blocker will present Victorian Fashion: From the Skin Out followed immediately by the screening at 6:00 pm. Admission to both the presentation and the screening is free. No advance registration or tickets required. Victoria, a new series about the epic life of Queen Victoria, will air on MASTERPIECE on PBS in 2017 in the Sunday night time slot occupied for six years by Downton Abbey.


The 30A Songwriters Festival Along Highway 30a, Florida Gulf Coast Friday-Sunday, January 13-16th, various times and venues The 8th annual festival, held in venues along scenic Highway 30A in Florida’s South Walton County, will feature headline performances from esteemed artists JOHN PRINE, CHEAP TRICK, DR. JOHN & THE NITE TRIPPERS, AND SHAWN COLVIN. Also confirmed on the main stage are Parker Millsap, Drivin N Cryin, and Amy LaVere. Featured artists in

44 BOOM!

January 2017

venues at night on 30A include John Fullbright, Over the Rhine, JoJo Hermann (Widespread Panic), Chely Wright, Murray Attaway (Guadalcanal Diary), Sarah Lee Guthrie, Matthew Sweet, Tom Gray (The Brains), Shawn Mullins, Peter Case, John Gorka, Nicole Witt, and Farewell Angelina. There will be 150 artists and 25 venues. For more info visit


Montgomery’s Capitol Sounds Concert Band Presents “Young People’s Concert” Sidney Lanier High School Auditorium Saturday, January 14th, 3 pm The Capitol Sounds Concert Band will highlight this performance with “Peter and the Wolf” composed by Sergei Prokofiev, and narrated by Josh Ninke. Also, Marie Robertson from the music department at Huntingdon College will be featured on Euphonium in the classic solo “Napoli”, In addition the Capitol Sounds will perform “African Celebration”, composed by Justin Harden, who is a native of Tallassee and plays flute in the band. There will also be a music instrument “petting zoo” display in the lobby of the auditorium before the concert. For more info visit


Jim Glaser and Bobby Tomberlin in Concert Hank Williams Museum Music Theater Saturday, January 14, 7-9 pm Tickets can be purchased by mailing your check or money order to Hank Williams Museum, 118 Commerce Street, Montgomery, AL 36104. Advanced tickets are $20 each. Tickets are $25 each at the door. Show time 7 pm. Concessions available. Tour of the Hank Williams Museum included in price of admission. Jim Glaser wrote and performed the hits “If I Could Only Dance with You,” “The Man in the Mirror,” “When You’re Not a Lady,” and “You’re Gettin’ to Me Again.” His songs have also been recorded by Marty Robbins, Johnny Cash, Hank Snow, Skeeter Davis, and Bill Anderson. Bobby Tomberlin wrote “A Good Day to Run” (Darryl Worley); “Angel’s Hands” (Rodney Atkins); “I Want You” (Faith Hill); “If Only” (Eddy Arnold); and “One More Day” and “She Misses Him on Sunday the Most” (Diamond Rio). For more information, call 334.262.3600 or visit events/607750796082557/

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine


The Original Harlem Globetrotters Garrett Coliseum Wednesday, January 18, 7-10 pm The Original Harlem Globetrotters are preparing for their action packed 2017 World Tour! A star-studded roster will have fans on the edge of their seats to witness the ball handling wizardry, basketball artistry and one-of-a-kind family entertainment that thrills fans of all ages. New this season, the Globetrotters will debut basketball’s first 4-point line. The 4-point line will be located 30 feet from the basket – 6 feet, 3 inches beyond the top of the NBA’s current 3-point line. You won’t want your family to miss it! For more info visit Tickets available at or call 334.356.6866.

MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA Aaron Lewis, Sinner, Concert MPAC-Downtown Montgomery Sunday, January 22, 7:30-10 pm

Known for genuinely gritty lyrics and hard rock anthems, Aaron Lewis is getting back to his Country roots September 16 with his first album on Dot Records entitled SINNER . Lewis comes out of the gate “with both fists flying” on the lead single “That Ain’t Country,” where he laments the current state of “Country, if you call it that,” and pines for the sound of his honky-tonk heroes. The Bocephus-styled musicality and Lewis’ accessible vocals showcase the “pain, heartache and desperation,” a bedrock of traditional Country that is often missing from the airwaves today. For more info and tickets visit


Pike Piddlers Storytelling Festival We Piddle Around Theater & Trojan Center Theater Brundidge & Troy, AL Friday-Saturday, January 27-28, various times Storytellers weave the magic of the spoken word When the weather turns cold and dreary and the wind whips around every corner, then it’s storytelling time. And there’s no better story place than the Pike Piddlers Storytelling Festival held annually the last weekend in January in Pike County, Alabama. The Pike Piddlers Storytelling Festival features pre-show music by traditional musicians prior to each storytelling concert. So everyone is invited to come early and enjoy some of the best bluegrass, country and Southern gospel music your ears will ever hear. The Pike Piddlers Storytelling Festival opens on Friday night with supper and stories at the We Piddle Around Theater in Brundidge and moves eight miles up the road to the Trojan Center Theater on the campus of Troy University for three storytelling concerts on Saturday. For more info call 334.372.1001 or visit website

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine


2017 Southern Bridal Faire Renaissance Montgomery Convention Center Sunday, January 29th, 1 - 5 pm

The Southern Bridal Faire is a great tool for all blushing brides-to-be! Find photographers, caterers, DJs, wedding planners, venues, florists and much more. Of course the day wouldn’t be complete without a fashion show featuring the most stunning gowns of 2017. Admission is $10 at the door. For more details, visit or call 334.491.0425.

MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA Theatre in the Mind at ASF ASF-Because of Winn-Dixie Saturday, February 4, 12- 1pm

Theatre in the Mind at ASF. Spend your Saturday gaining new insights into ASF productions through the acclaimed Theatre in the Mind and Bard Talk lecture discussions! Designed around the plays presented each season, you can participate in free pre-show discussions, author, cast, designer and director talks at ASF, most Saturdays at noon. Hosted by Dr. Susan Willis, ASF’s resident dramaturg, these entertaining and thoughtprovoking lectures by noted theatre scholars complement a perfect Saturday afternoon at the theatre! Theatre in the Mind is free and open to the public. Reservations are not required; you may pick up your ticket at the box office counter just before each lecture. You do not need to be a ticket holder to that day’s performance to attend the lecture.

BIRMINGHAM, ALABAMA Birmingham Winter Beer Fest BJCC Saturday, February 4, 3-7pm

Shake off your winter blues and enjoy some craft brews! The inaugural Birmingham Winter Beer Fest comes to the TheBJCC on Saturday, Feb 4th. Enjoy over 150 world-class craft beers, a cask garden, Educational beer sessions, cooking with beer demos, a Jack Brown’s VIP area, photo booth, silent disco, and much much more! Tickets now on sale this Friday at or at Birmingham area Piggly Wiggly Stores.

MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA Rockin’ Road To Dublin MPAC-Downtown Montgomery Wednesday, February 22, 7:30pm

Following sell-out shows in the Northeast, Rockin’ Road to Dublin is coming to Montgomery Performing Arts Centre on their first national tour! Come see the show that Irish Dancing Magazine calls “WORLD CLASS ... a one-two punch of style and mastery ... they made some magic here”. Rockin’ Road to Dublin is the new sensation that combines the art of an Irish dance show, the power of a Rock-N-Roll concert, all with the finish of a Broadway theatrical production. Starring World Champion Irish dancers Scott Doherty and Ashley Smith, the cast includes 14 dancers, 8 musicians and two vocalists. For tickets and more visit

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



Be a safety-savvy

the seats properly. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration website provides safety seat ratings, usage guides and handy information.

When you’re a grandparent, the perks are precious. You get to indulge your grandkids and lavish them with love. You get to share their magic moments and go gaga over their goo-goos.

Keep children in the backseat. It’s the safest place to be if there’s a crash. And front seats may have air bags, which can hurt youngsters.


For these reasons and more, grandparents are invaluable caregivers. But there’s one more important thing that all grandparents need to do for grandchildren—make sure the kids have a safe home to come and visit. Practicing “safety first” might sound like a cinch. After all, if you’re a grandparent, you know a thing or 2 about child rearing. But safety rules today are different and stricter than they used to be. And the dangers of unsafe child care are too grave to ignore. Accidental injuries: A major problem Preventable injury is the leading cause of death for children in the U.S., according to Safe Kids Worldwide.

Use child-resistant containers for medications and vitamins. If old-style childproof packaging requires too much pushing and turning, ask pharmacists for newer models. These rely on know-how rather than strength. Never leave grandchildren alone near water, whether it’s in buckets, bathtubs or even toilets. Young children can drown in as little as 1 inch of water, according to Safe Kids. Children of all ages need supervision at swimming pools, lakes and all open water. Post poison control center and emergency numbers near the telephone. The national toll-free number for poison centers is 800.222.1222.

But what precautions should you take? Safety groups offer these basic rules:

Install and maintain carbon monoxide (CO) and smoke alarms. Put smoke alarms on every level of your home and in every bedroom. Install a CO alarm in hallways near every sleeping area.

Buckle up grandkids every time they’re in the car. Put children in age-appropriate car seats or booster seats. Install and use

Set your water heater temperature to 120 degrees or lower to avoid tap water scalding.

Make sure your home is free of lead, a serious childhood health threat. Visit the National Lead Information Center website for comprehensive information about lead poisoning prevention. Don’t smoke. Children who breathe secondhand smoke from cigarettes, cigars and pipes are more likely to develop asthma, pneumonia and other lung diseases, according to the American Lung Association. Have children wear safety gear, such as helmets, when they play sports or ride bikes or scooters. Lock up dangerous items. Children love to explore and experiment. So it’s important to keep the following items locked up, out of reach and out of sight: I Medications, vitamins, chemicals, household products and sharp tools or objects. I Matches, lighters and flammable items. I Firearms (store them unloaded). I Ammunition (store it separately from firearms). It’s also wise to avoid antiques or old products, such as cribs, that might be unsafe. Many old toys and items predate federal safety standards and do not pass muster. For information on these and other issues, call the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission toll-free hotline at 800.638.2772.

Digital & Interactive When you read the Digital & Interactive version of BOOM! on your digital device you will be interactive with every website and email link in the magazine. You can click through to a writer’s source, an advertiser, send comments and suggestions, request more info and share your favorite reads on Facebook and Twitter. The Digital & Interactive version was built for the new you so go ahead and sign up for a free subscription at “BOOM!, the best reading experience for the 50+ community”

46 BOOM!

January 2017

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

R ive r Re gio n Bo o m . co m

January 2017



Provides caring, quality services that affect all communities and every person in the state — not just those who walk through health department doors.

Increases access to health care for eligible, uninsured children ages birth through 18 with the ALL Kids Children’s Health Insurance Program. In 2013, ALL Kids served nearly 85,000 Alabama children.

Provides nutrition assessment, education, and nutritious foods at no cost to a monthly average of 139,000 limitedincome pregnant, breastfeeding, and postpartum women, infants, and children up to age 5 at nutritional risk through WIC.

Investigates disease outbreaks, maintains surveillance of notifiable diseases, and answers queries about disease control and other health-related events including communicable disease outbreaks and rabies case investigations.

Protects patients/ residents of health care facilities from abuse and neglect. Works to ensure facilities provide a level of care that complies with state and federal standards. Requires corrective action when surveys find facilities are noncompliant.

Protects the public from foodborne illnesses and the spread of disease by ensuring standards in environmental health, regulates onsite sewage disposal systems, and oversees treatment and disposal of septage and other permitted wastes.

Offers home care services that include skilled nursing, physical therapy, medical social work, and personal care services through Medicare-certified home health agencies.

Provides health education to modify behavior to prevent and manage chronic diseases such as arthritis, asthma, cancer, heart disease, and overweight/obesity.

Offers a tobacco Quitline.Thirty-nine percent of tobacco users who complete the telephone or online program stop using tobacco.

Issues certified copies of all Alabama birth, death, marriage, and divorce certificates in every county health department on a while-you-wait basis regardless of where in the state the event occurred.

Provides a wide range of confidential and professional family planning services, regardless of income, to prevent unintended pregnancies and abortion through education and contraceptive services.

Administers the Alabama Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program to provide screening to uninsured and underinsured women age 40-64, and ensures treatment is provided.

Screens newborns for genetic or metabolic conditions, thereby reducing morbidity, premature death, intellectual and other developmental disabilities through early detection and follow-up.

Provides clinical nursing services such as immunizations, and STD and TB screening and treatment. Administers the Alabama Drug Assistance Program for HIV medication assistance.

Assists rural and medically underserved areas by working with health care providers and organizations to prepare grants and provide workforce development.

Assures that emergency medical services meet or exceed established standards. 1-800-252-1818

BOOM! January 2017  

The River Region's 50+ Lifestage Magazine

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you