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Secret Heart


to a


A woman’s heart beats proud and true. The secret to keeping it that way? Living a heart-healthy life. So make sure to have a heart-to-heart with your physician and learn all the ways you can keep your heart healthy, proud, and true.

Heart-healthy tip # 4

Keep a healthy weight by controlling diet and exercising regularly.

Heart Center


for Boomers and Beyond

July 2012

Get Fit—10 Minutes at a Time

Getting in shape doesn’t require a big investment of time—not when activities are broken into 10-minute chunks spread throughout your day. For example, a series of short walks during the day, along with lifting hand weights a couple of days a week can add up. Before you know it, you’re on your way to feeling better, having more energy and maintaining your independence as you get older. And that’s a healthy investment in your retirement years.

Strength, stamina and more

Regular, moderately intense exercise can help offset some of the changes that occur with aging, such as loss of strength and stamina. When you stay strong and fit, it’s easier to keep doing what you enjoy and to keep handling everyday tasks on your own. Just as important, staying active helps control blood pressure and weight and helps to reduce risk for heart disease, stroke and the bone-thinning disease osteoporosis. Your energy, sleep and mood may improve too. If it has been a while since you’ve exercised or you have any health problems, ask your doctor what activities and amounts of exercise are safe for you.

About those 10 minutes:

To achieve and maintain all-around fitness, you will need to engage in four basic types of activities:

1. Aerobic or endurance. Brisk walking, cycling and swimming are good choices. You’ll need at least 150 minutes of moderately intense activities a week. Again, you can achieve that goal in 10-minute chunks—such as three times a day, five days a week. Or, if you prefer, you can get the same benefits from 75 minutes of vigorous activity, such as jogging and running, throughout the week. 2. Strengthening. Lifting weights or stretching resistance bands are two options. Aim to do at least one set (8 to 12 repetitions) of strengthening exercises on two or more days a week. Work all major muscle groups. 3. Balance. Standing from a seated position and walking backwards are two examples. Aim to do these activities at least three days a week. 4. Flexibility. Move through some stretches when your muscles are warmed up. Doing more than the minimum amounts can bring even more health benefits. However, start slowly and build gradually. One final tip for staying on the path to a healthier life: choose activities you enjoy. That way, you’ll be motivated to keep them up—and you might even look forward to your exercise breaks.

It’s hot outside. So hot that you’re considering skipping your typical outdoor exercise routine. That may be a wise choice. High temperatures can raise your risk for heat-related injuries, ranging from mild heat cramps to life-threatening heat stroke. Despite these risks, heat injuries can often be prevented. To exercise safely in the heat, you should: • Prepare your body. You need to be in good physical condition to exercise in the heat, and you need to give your body time to adjust to warmer temperatures. Gradually increase your activity in the heat over a period of 7 to 10 days. • Try to work out early in the morning or after sunset, when it is cooler. • Drink plenty of fluids before, during and after exercise. • Reduce the intensity of your workout. • Take frequent rest breaks. • Strongly consider postponing or canceling your workout when heat and humidity levels are extremely high. Sources: American Council on Exercise; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; National Institute on Aging; American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons; American Council on Exercise

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

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July 2012




July 2012

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

r i ve r reg i o n b o o m . co m

July 2012




July 2012

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

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


July 2012 Volume 2 Issue 12

“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

Thought Relationships Taste Inspiration

Humor Advice Health Community

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

3 Jackson Hospital’s Health News 8 Publisher’s Letter 12 Cover Profile 21 Healthy Hearing, Hearing Aid Accessories 27 Art & Soul: Sandi Aplin page 16

30 Male Call: Greg Budell Come to LA!

Features 16 Love Notes:

18 Sibling Strife

Departments 10 This and That

28 {12} Things

What Causes a Spark?

Have you heard about....

How to resolve the 3 senior care issues siblings fight about most.

Solutions for bored people.

22 Bucket List Adventure:

31 BOOM! Advertising

Steamboatin’ the Mark Twain Way

24 Sherry Debray A Wasted Taco



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BOOM! magazine is published monthly by River Region Publications, 8637 Harvest Ridge Dr., Montgomery, AL 36116. The phone number for voice and fax is 334.523.9510. Copyright 2012 by River Region Publications. No part of this publication can be reproduced without written permission from the publisher. Opinions expressed in BOOM! 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

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July 2012



publisher’s letter

Appreciation 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.

One of the most rewarding things I do as the publisher of BOOM! is create valuable relationships with my readers and customers (advertisers). I was invited recently to attend a Patient Appreciation Day to help Doctors Hearing Clinic celebrate their 5th Anniversary. I was included in the event because BOOM! is a Marketing Partner for Dr. Bettie Borton and Doctors Hearing Clinic. It was an honor to be included, to share BOOM! with her patients, suppliers and employees. They made me feel right at home, including ice cream and cookies!


Jim Watson, 334.523.9510

Associate Editor Kelly Watson

Contributing Writers Dr. Bettie Borton

Sandi Aplin Shaerry Debray Cindy Barganier Greg Budell Ellen Warren Kathy Witt Belinda Hulin

Cover Photography Lola Fine Art Photography


Jim Watson, 334.523.9510

Monette Mottenon, 334.523.9510

Design & Layout

Dr. Borton is one of those valuable relationships that began with our first issue of BOOM!, two years ago. I appreciate Dr. Borton, along with many others who have given me the opportunity to help them grow awareness for their services, thanks! I look forward to helping many businesses in the River Region discover Jim Watson, Publisher the value of the Boomer community and to providing more quality content to the thousands of Boomers who read BOOM! each month.

In this month’s BOOM! we have a lineup of stories and features that will keep you interested from page one. Our BOOM! Cover Profile is Cindy Barganier. Cindy has lived and worked in the River Region for 30 years, providing interior design services to many families throughout the years. But in the last few years, she and her husband Jeff have become empty nesters, business partners and creative entrepreneurs. Cindy is pursuing lifelong dreams and Jeff measures her progress along the way. They understand each other’s strengths and weaknesses, they have synergy. And they have a plan. Check out Cindy’s Q & A on page 12 for some inspiration! Many brothers and sisters are challenged with sick parent’s needs for care, whose responsible, and who pays. We have a feature called Sibling Strife that will help clarify the problems and solutions when caring for aging parents. We all have a bucket list of some kind. It’s usually an adventure or trip somewhere, maybe even a daring and heart pounding experience like sky diving. Well how about traveling through time…to the late 1800’s and taking a riverboat cruise with Mark Twain! How about a little taste of love? On page 16, we offer a little Love Note from an eightysomething couple who never could discover the spark of their love but have been enjoying its fire for more than 60 years!

Lake House Graphics


Network Delivery


Publications Press, Montgomery, AL 334.244.0436

Please Recycle This Magazine, Share with a Friend!

There is much more with Greg Budell’s column about one of the famous Killer B’s; and a unique take about a wasted taco from Sherry Debray; of course Sandi Aplin enlightens us with her usual glimpse into the mind of an artist. I’m sure you’ll find a few goodies for your reading pleasure.

Dr. Bettie Borton and me at “Patient Appreciation” event at Doctor’s Hearing Clinic

I want to wish all of you a Happy Independence Day. But as I think about our independence, I’m reminded that as Americans we are more depended on our government than we have ever been. How free are you feeling these days? Thanks to all of our readers. I appreciate your feedback and encouragement. Please continue sharing BOOM! with your friends, I know they’ll appreciate it! Remember, it’s a great time to be Booming!

Jim 334.324.3472 cell/text 334.523.9510 office


July 2012

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

Meet the doctor who’s all ears. Ask audiologist Dr. Bettie Borton how many ears she’s treated and she’ll say “thousands.” It’s the voice of experience. As a board-certified audiologist with more than 30 years of experience, Dr. Borton is recognized as an expert in hearing health care. The only AudigyCertifiedTM provider in Alabama, Dr. Borton has been helping your friends and neighbors get the most out of life for years. Call for a complimentary hearing screening. Then put yourself in the hands of someone who has done it a thousand times before.

Bettie B. Borton, Au.D., FAAA Board Certified Doctor of Audiology Former National Chair of the American Board of Audiology President-Elect of the American Academy of Audiology For your convenience,

call us toll-free at



7025 Halcyon Park Dr, Ste A


Doctors Hearing Clinic

2204-D Gateway Dr

Helping People Hear!

View our virtual seminar at The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

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July 2012




This & tHAT Pike Road Celebrates Independence Day at The Waters!

Fine, Go To Your Room! So your kid is armed with a shiny new college degree. Next step: moving back home? “Boomerang kids” are a growing trend. Returning home has lost its stigma in the recession: 78% of boomerang kids are happy with their arrangement, and 77% feel optimistic about their futures—and their finances. Nearly half of boomerang kids pay rent, and 90% help out with their parents’ daily expenses, according to a recent Pew survey. Setting a token rent payment and holding your kid responsible helps him/her develop a habit she’ll need when she moves out, says Dr. Carl Pickhardt, psychologist and author of “Boomerang Kids.” As for unemployed kids, Pickhardt recommends setting a rent anyway: once your boomeranger gets a job, she’ll owe back payments. Feel awkward? Take it as a good sign. “Yes, it puts a strain on the relationship— and it should,” says Pickhardt. “Otherwise, the kid will never move out.” Ideally, a returning grad should be grateful to have a home. Parents should be grateful that they are able to offer support—which will enable their children to become successful, independent adults.

Aging isn’t Always Pretty Jack Nicholson is one of America’s best actors and at 75, he still commands a big salary for his skills. We’re not sure if he’s preparing for a new movie or not but it appears he could use the help of a “Manzier,” the man’s bra invented by Seinfeld’s Kramer.

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“Make a Difference… One Step at a Time” Walk-a-Thon The Alabama Kidney Foundation will host its annual “Make a Difference…One Step at a Time” Walk-a-Thon on Saturday, August 18, 2012 at Baptist Health’s DeBoer Building, in Montgomery. The Alabama Kidney Foundation (AKF) is Alabama’s only statebased organization dedicated to serving kidney patients. The Foundation’s programs, which are provided free to Alabama’s kidney patients in need, provide tangible solutions to real and, oftentimes, crucial needs. One of the ways AKF is able to provide these services is through the money raised from their annual Walk-a-Thons. This family friendly event offers something for everyone; food, fun and fabulous prizes! If you are interested in leading a team at this year’s Walk-a-Thon and helping thousands of Alabamians suffering from kidney disease, please contact Amy at (334) 241-0003 or amy@alkidney. org to register a team today.

The Shoppes at EastChase Reward Local Classrooms The Shoppes at EastChase will contribute up to $1,000 to one area Montgomery Public School teacher through its Shoptimum Rewards program. Montgomery Public School teachers are asked to write an essay explaining why their classroom deserves $1,000. The lucky teacher who wins first place in the essay contest, as well as the second and third place winners, will be announced on Saturday, August 4, during the taxfree weekend. Second and third place winners will receive gift cards to The Shoppes at EastChase. During Shoptimum Rewards, happening July 30 – August 5, customers receive a free $25 gift card when they spend a total of $250 or more across five qualifying stores or restaurants at The Shoppes at EastChase. For each Shoptimum Rewards redemption, the selected teacher’s classroom will receive a $5 donation. For more information on the essay contest and how to submit an essay, go to The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

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

Summer Fashion Camps at The Shoppes at EastChase Offers Daytime Activity for Granddaughters Summer is a time when grandparents get to spend more time with their grandchildren—sometimes keeping them during the day while parents work or keeping them for extended periods of time. Fashion Camps are the perfect opportunity to provide granddaughters something fun to do while visiting grandma and grandpa. The Shoppes at EastChase will host the last phase of Fashion Camps for ages 6-12 in July. The one-day camps will be separated into two age groups: ages 6-8 and ages 9-12. The sessions will take place two weeks in July, and each fashion camp will run from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. with the cost of $65 per child. The dates for July include July 16, 17, 23 and 24 for ages 6-8 and July 18, 19, 25 and 26 for ages 9-12. Little fashionistas will learn about subjects such as Style 101, accessorizing, makeup, decorating and entertaining with the breakout sessions hosted by WilliamsSonoma, Claire’s, Earth Fare Organic Grocer, GAP, Anthony Vince Nail Spa, The Studio at EastChase and Dillards. The day also includes lunch, a $25 gift card to The Shoppes at EastChase, a special gift and an official graduation certificate. Space is limited. To register, go to www.theshoppesateastchase. com to register online, call the main office at 334-279-6046 or stop by Guest Services located next to Ware Jewelers.

Dr. Borton Presents at International Adult Hearing Screening Conference Dr. Bettie Borton, board certified Audiologist and owner of Doctors Hearing Clinic, in collaboration with Dr. Carole Johnson of Auburn University, recently presented a paper entitled Hearing Aid Satisfaction Outcomes for Adults with Mild Hearing Loss at the International Adult Hearing Screening Conference (AHS), held in June in Lake Como, Italy. The AHS conference is held in conjunction with the Newborn Hearing Screening (NHS) meeting, and the 2012 Conference was designed to provide state-of-the-art scientific and clinical information on the rapidly changing landscape of adult hearing healthcare. The conference is focused on a comprehensive spectrum of issues related to early identification, treatment of auditory dysfunctions and aural rehabilitation in adults and children. Dr. Borton, currently the CEO of Doctors Hearing Clinic, is also the President Elect of the American Academy of Audiology, the largest organization of, by, and for Audiologists in the world. The Academy represents more than 12,000 professionals in the United States and 13 foreign countries.

Do You Have an Actor in the Family? The Playhouse School Summer Sessions July 17th through 26th 1-7 pm. Location Cloverdale Playhouse. K-2nd Grade Session: Fundamentals & Fun 3rd-5th Grade Session: Movement & Dance: Getting the physical and emotional in tune and ready to play onstage. 6-8th Grade Session: Character Building Through exercises, monologue and scene work actors explore how character is developed. 7th -12th Grade: Make-up and Wig Session: 14yrs.-Adult Session: Commedia dell’Arte 10-12th Grade Session: “Landing The Program”

For more info email or or Call: (334) 262-1530 The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

r i ve r reg i o n b o o m . co m

July 2012




Cindy Barganier, Designer This month’s BOOM! profile is Cindy Barganier. Cindy is full of talent and knows how to connect with her many clients throughout the southeast. A blurb from her blog, Forever Design, says it well... “I am a wife, a mother, and a designer (oh yes, AND a Gigi!). As one who loves beauty in all forms; interiors, music, dance…I strive to add beauty wherever I can. As a professional I specialize in handling the 101,000 details of a building or renovation project in a way that allows the owners to say, “That was fun!” at the end.” Most of us know that making a building or renovation project fun is a very tall order and after sharing some time with Cindy and Jeff, her husband (and business manager), she’d be the perfect choice to make a renovation project fun! We sat down with both of them at their office/studio in the The Waters Business District. The first impression was the doorway, a set of antique Argentine doors from the early 1800’s. They are nearly 10 feet tall, ornate, and beautiful. We’re told they are the most photographed set of doors in the River Region, if not Alabama. Those doors open to a world of creativity both Cindy and Jeff are building their dreams on, a story many Boomers would be inspired by. Hope you enjoy the conversation with Cindy as much as we did and don’t forget to check out those doors!

BOOM!: Please give us a brief biography, i.e. where you’re from, education, what brought you to the Montgomery area, did you raise your family here, schools, married, family, etc? Cindy: I am from Greenville, Alabama and, as the only child of a small town mayor, pretty much grew up in a fishbowl but loved it. I finished high school at Fort Dale Academy and moved on to Auburn where I majored in Design and served as Vice President and President of The School of Home Economics (now called Human Sciences). While at Auburn the most meaningful group that I was a part of was the Auburn University Concert Choir. They kept me anchored. So important were the relationships developed with the leaders and members of Concert Choir and Univer-

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sity Singers that they sang for my and Jeff’s wedding. (Five years ago Jeff and I boarded a plane with about 25 alumni members from those two groups and we had the amazing experience of singing our way across Europe. I was in heaven.) Following graduation from Auburn, I married Jeff and moved to Montgomery where he was a student at Jones Law School. Five years later our sweet Megan was born and I became a part-time (read full-time) volunteer at Memorial Presbyterian Church and Trinity Presbyterian School. LOL. Megan is now grown and married to a wonderful, Godly man; and has blessed us with the addition of two precious grandchildren, a girl and a boy. We are thrilled! BOOM!: You’re the owner of Cindy Barganier Interiors; please tell us how you started the business? What was your inspiration? Cindy: I worked in a retail furniture store for a year following graduation and recommend that all new design graduates have some form of sales training in their background before launching their own companies. It forces you to hone your skills at greeting the public, listening to client desires and working with budgets. School projects were great fun but with no real life problems to work around and “the sky is the limit” budgets they weren’t very practical. As the daughter of an intrepid entrepreneur and marrying another one it was inevitable that I would have my own

company. Jeff and I decided that we would wait until I had two commercial jobs under contract before we launched because we knew that would provide the income needed to carry us the first year. That scenario materialized at the end of 1979; so we officially opened the doors of our new adventure in 1980. For the first few years I had a design partner which was great because she had more experience than I did and helped me over some rocky places, but after a few years, Jeff and I bought the company outright and have run it together since then except for a ten year hiatus that I took during Megan’s formative years. Raising her was my first priority. Jeff had a 20+ year career in the legal and investment fields before selling his company and joining me full-time as we re-launched Cindy Barganier Interiors. Neither of us was ever really happy working for someone else. We love the freedom that owning your own business affords even though it means you are never “off duty.” We look back now and laugh about me placing wallpaper and fabric orders from the maternity ward. But the show must go on. I have pictures of me jiggling Megan on my shoulder when she was an infant while talking with clients on the phone. She went on many appointments with me in the early years and most of my clients had a box of Megan toys that they kept handy—even the dentist and doctor’s offices that I was working on at the time. Probably the craziest story involved the years that Jeff and I both taught at AUM. He taught in the Business School and his classes would end at 6:00 p.m. I taught in Continuing Education and mine started at 7:00. We would meet at the AUM exit and transfer the baby seat from my car to his and keep rolling. I don’t think we even realized at the time how hard we were working. We just saw it as fulfilling a dream and we were willing to do whatever it took.

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

BOOM!: Jeff, your husband, is also your business manager and you said he is the perfect complement to your artistic side. Could you share more about working with Jeff?

meeting incredibly creative people and tellI need a time of refreshing I start thinking ing their stories. Notably, artists like former about North Carolina, a fire in the fireplace Montgomery and a tall stack of books and magazines. Howrealtor Don ever, for work, nothing energizes me more Sawyer who than a trip to New York or Europe. These has sold over trips push me out of my box and make me Cindy: I don’t think 6,000 original see everything differently. Then I’ll begin to this would have paintings; the use fresh color combinations. I’ll view space worked if we had not renowned planning SO differently— especially after done it as a team. I am theatrical experiencing how efficiently small spaces are a very global thinker. I designer, used in large cities. New sources are discovsee the big, big picture Michael ered. It’s like going back to school and I can’t and love net-working Vaughn Sims, get enough of it. to get things done. and Tommy My friends and famMoorehead, BOOM!: As a busy entrepreneur, do you have ily shake their heads Curator of time to be involved in community, civic or when we go out Talledega’s other activities? together because I am Heritage Hall always working the Museum are Cindy: There are days past when all I did was crowd. Like my Daddy, Excellent Artwork for charities and civic groups. While Cindy’s dad, Mac Plummer, Cindy and Jeff I can’t stand not to ist clients. I’m still connected with Auburn University’s know everyone in the room. Jeff is the quiet School of Design, about the only other activione. He is the nuts and bolts man who takes BOOM!: What are you most passionate ties I have time for these days are church, care of the books and keeps me straight. God about? grandchildren, taking care of clients in and bless him…he has quite a job. This arrangeout of state; and my own very time-consumment is not for everyone. You have to have a Cindy: I have been able to ing design very strong relationship to be able to spend pursue a long held dream projects. every waking moment together. Our faith of designing furniture is the glue that holds us together. We have and fabrics and now have BOOM!: How learned to major on the majors and go for both on the market. The do you like long walks (separately!) when the little things fabrics are driving me to relax and start to bug us. Haha now. It is like birthing a wind down baby to see these new from a hard BOOM!: Many Boomers are experiencing a creations come to life, day’s work? renewed sense of purpose, new goals, new first on paper and then, careers, especially if they’ve experienced the almost miraculously, on Cindy: How empty nest syndrome of their kids moving fabric. Right now they do we wind on. How would you describe this sense of are only available through down after a renewal in your life? Any advice for the rest of Cindy Barganier Interiors, hard day at us seeking renewal? but Jamie Etheredge, Son-in-law, Megan, Cindy and Mac Plummer, her dad work? Now later that’s funny. Cindy: As empty nesters, we this year we have a Jeff seeks solitude in the form a long walk have been able to reassess “rep group” who will around the lake. I head straight for the peowhat WE want to do and we be selling both the ple. I want a short walk that involves stopping have had the freedom to exfabric collections and the at numerous porches to sit on a swing with plore new avenues and take furniture collection for friends, sip iced tea and talk about anything greater risks than we would us. Sometimes I have to BUT business or anything too heavy. Cheerful have if someone else was pinch myself. You know, people rejuvenate me. going to be affected by those it really is true, good decisions. Jeff, who published things do come to those BOOM!: If you weren’t creating beautiful his first novel, The Slash who wait and God really home interiors, what kind of work would you Brokers, in 1998 has explored does have plans for each be doing? his desire to be a professional of us if we will just be writer and has been pubstill long enough to hear Cindy: If I weren’t designing interiors I would lished in numerous national what He is saying. Life is like to be teaching design at the college level. and even international publigood. cations. He launched another BOOM!: What is it about living in the MontCindy and Jeff at Gov. Bentley’s Inauguration leg of our company called BOOM!: Favorite vacagomery/River Region area that you like? Excellent Artist ( tion spot? Any travel dreams planned for the where he mentors and serves as publicist for future? Cindy: I love living in the River Region just artists who wish to raise their platforms as because it is home. It’s where “everybody creative professionals. We travel far and wide Cindy: The mountains call my name. When knows my name.” I used to think that I would

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

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like to move told it’s not to some exotic your normal locale and do big game of tenimportant things nis. We talk but there is a lot in the middle to be said for beof points— ing content where mostly about you are and grandchildren doing the really and recipes. important things It drives that we are called our mixed to do every single doubles partday, like sharing ners crazy! a smile. It is now Cindy and Jeff in their office/studio at The Waters most important to BOOM!: me that my family and friends know that they What future challenges do you have? Would are loved and appreciated; that I pass on the you like to expand your business? Start new eternal truths and that I enjoy this life that I ones? have been given. Cindy: The challenge for the future when you BOOM!: Give us three words that describe have never worked for a large company is tryyou? ing to figure out how you will ever be able to STOP working. That is one reason we are deCindy: Three words that I think describe me veloping these other avenues. They will bring are: joyful, optimistic, spiritual in residual income that is not dependent on one of the two of us sitting at this desk every BOOM!: Do you have any hobbies or other single day. At least that is the plan. activities that grab your attention? BOOM!: On your blog, you mention coachCindy: I have always loved music and dance ing services for small businesses and public but since moving to The Waters I have acspeaking is this something you do often? quired a new love: tennis. We have a ball. I’m

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Cindy: I love public speaking and even built my business on it: programs on decorating for the general public. I am now on the Advisory Board for the Interior Design Program at Auburn which, by the way, is Number 1 in the nation. Part of my role there is to mentor the students and serve as guest lecturer or juror for their classes. There is nothing that excites Jeff and me more than helping others figure out how to launch new businesses. He used to teach a class called “How to Start and Succeed in Your Own Small Business.” We have thought about resurrecting that course and teaching it together. BOOM!: What’s a Gigi? Cindy: What’s a GIGI??? Are you serious? A Gigi is the most important person in the whole wide world: a Grandmama! I’m a Gigi!

If you have questions for Cindy or Jeff you can reach them at 334.356.3652 or visit or We want to thank Cindy and Jeff for sharing their time and stories with us for this month’s BOOM! Cover Profile. If you have questions, comments or suggestions, please send them to jim@

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine


Les and Leah Axelrod at their home. They’ve been married for 61 years and have six children. (Andrew A. Nelles/Chicago Tribune/MCT)

Love Notes: What Causes a Spark?

By Ellen Warren

“The truth is, I was totally indifferent,” said Les Axelrod.

favor to his fraternity brother. “It was an obligation,” he said. And, let it be said, Leah was equally indifferent to Les. “I’d have a different date every night for a week and Les was one of these guys,” she said. No big deal.

Once every year from 1945 to 1949 Leah Mandelker traveled from her home in Milwaukee to visit cousins Ann, Ruth and Jack in St. Louis.

Was there ever any little hint of romance on any of those annual dates? At almost the same moment, both of them, emphatically, said, “No!”

And for each of those years, Jack would fix Leah up with one of his Zeta Beta Tau fraternity brothers from Washington University in St. Louis.

Maybe it was a change of geography that made the difference, wiping out all that indifference. By Thanksgiving 1950, Les had joined the Navy and was stationed at the Great Lakes Naval Training Center in North Chicago, Ill., not too far from Milwaukee.

Les and Leah had one date a year for five years. In between those dates they didn’t talk, didn’t write and didn’t think about each other.

For five straight years, Les got tapped as one of Leah’s dates. He did it as a

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Now it was Leah’s turn to host Les, who came to her family’s home for turkey and all the trimmings. After that, “I thought the least I could do was invite Leah back to Great Lakes for boot camp graduation, which was in December,” he said. “We graduated just before Christmas leave. I had the week between Christmas and New Year’s off. “The least she could do was invite me back to Milwaukee for that week.” Was there, finally, romance in the air? After all, they’d been dating, if sporadically, for six years. “Not yet, but you’re close,” Les said. On Dec. 24, 1950, in front of the fireplace in Leah’s parents’ living room,

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

“Leah kissed me, and sparks flew.”

youngest, a daughter, Nell. They range in age from 46 to 59. Incidentally, they’re not related to President Barack Obama’s top political strategist David Axelrod.

“I had kissed him previously on dates, but it didn’t mean anything,” she explains. And why, suddenly, was this kiss different from all the rest? In a terse summary of the mystery of love, Leah said, “Isn’t that strange? I don’t know.”

When the bustling family was growing up in Highland Park, Ill., they would eat dinners at the table with mom and dad at either end and the kids arrayed three on each side.

“We stayed up most of the night of Dec. 24 just talking,” Les said.

Nowadays, Les, 83, and Leah, 82, sit down for dinner together at that same table in that same Highland Park house. But now they sit close, side by side.

“After this long evening, Leah turns to me and says, ‘You realize you haven’t asked me to marry you.’ I said, ‘I don’t intend to live in sin with you.’”

Les does the shopping and the laundry. Leah cooks and runs a tour business out of their home. They celebrated their 61st anniversary in March.

Leah: “That was it.” She’d asked for a proposal. He had backed into one, and they were engaged.

A year earlier, their kids wanted to do something special for their parents’ 60th wedding anniversary. “Our son Craig asked us if we wanted to go on a cruise. Take a trip,” Les said.

After that Christmas Eve kiss, things moved quickly. They picked out an engagement ring. Les drove around the block while Leah ran into the store to pick it up. Back in the car, “Leah says, ‘Put the ring on me now.’ I say, ‘I can’t. The light is green.’ I’m very anal retentive. Finally we got a red light, and I said, ‘OK. Now!’ And I put it on.” Leah: “We didn’t have very romantic moments.”

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Les: “But it worked out, I guess.” And how. On that night in 1950 when they stayed up most of the night talking, one of the first things Les and Leah agreed on was that they would have six children. And they do. Five boys--David, Craig, Harry, Garrick and Bradley and the

“No, we want to be all together,” Leah said. The entire extended family, including, of course, those St. Louis relatives. Said Les: “We didn’t want to go anywhere. We want to be together. That’s what it’s all about.” Distributed by MCT Information Services

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July 2012



Sibling Strife How to resolve the 3 senior care issues siblings fight about most By Belinda Hulin,

Roxanne Greene’s beloved father was ill. Her mother, a critical, difficult woman who was in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease, needed help finding him treatment and end-of-life care. Greene researched, visited and priced-out numerous facilities, finally settling on a nursing home a short drive away from her home.

Can Survive Their Parents’ Aging Without Driving Each Other Crazy.” Her research on siblings and caregiving shows that in 90-percent of families, one sibling shoulders more, if not most, of the caregiving burden.

Green’s father died within a couple of months, and soon after, her mother’s behavior became more erratic, and more dangerous. Stove burners were left on, doors weren’t locked, meals went uneaten. Clearly, Mom was no longer capable of living alone. Amid alternating bouts of complacency and hurtful accusations, Roxanne moved her mother to a memory-care facility where she eventually, mercifully, suffered a stroke and died.

1. Roles and rivalries “Recognizing and taking responsibility is not always in a person’s psyche, says Russo.” “Each sibling was brought up with a different relationship to the family, to their parents and to their own responsibilities. Sometimes, the way people behave has a lot to do with the relationship they have with their parents.”

The entire ordeal lasted just over two years. During that time, Roxanne was chauffeur, business manager, caregiver, health advocate, insurance mediator, maid, errand-runner, legal surrogate and dutiful, loving daughter to her parents. She built relationships with everyone who came in contact with her caustic mother, trying to soften the verbal assaults with homemade cookies. She planned two funerals. She did everything an only child should do. But Roxanne isn’t an only child. Her sister, who could easily afford plane tickets, lives several states away and her brother is only a two-hour drive north. Yet, both were conspicuously absent. “My sister sent checks. My brother emailed excuses,” Roxanne says. “I was determined to do the right thing by my parents, because I didn’t want to have any regrets. But honestly, I never felt more alone in my life.” The Three Main Sibling Stressors Unfortunately, that’s not an unusual situation, says Francine Russo, author of “They’re Your Parents, Too!: How Siblings

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Russo and other experts say the child who felt most loved by the parents or the one who self-identifies as the “good” son or daughter might be more likely to take on the primary caregiver role. The child who took the most browbeating, or who feels like a disappointment, or who feels ignored would be less willing to extend themselves to a needy parent. Roxanne’s reward for being the “good” daughter? Her consulting business tanked, her friends stopped asking her to lunch, and her 20-year marriage fell apart while she focused on her parents. Oh, and she didn’t speak to either of her siblings for almost a year after her mother’s funeral. “They both had tried to convince themselves that I had everything under control, that I was the sister who ‘handled’ things. In reality, they just didn’t want to face my mother. The problem is, while they were avoiding Mom, they were also abandoning me.” 2. Sharing responsibilities elder law expert Harry Margolis says when it comes to dividing care-duties, there’s no cookie-cutter solution that will work for all families. “Every family is different, so every family has to work out

the best arrangement for them,” he says. “I think I’ve seen just about every arrangement. One sibling handles legal matters while another handles personal care and medical questions, while a third does the shopping and maintains the house. In many cases, the effort can’t be equalized, especially if some siblings live close to the parents while others live far away.” Margolis notes that any sibling who actually lives under the same roof as elder family members will, of necessity, provides more hands-on care. In the interest of fairness, that sibling might be compensated financially. “Or, the other siblings might contribute their vacations to move in with the parents and to permit the caretaker child some respite,” he says. “In large families, I’ve seen adult children get assigned different days of the week that they sleep over at their parents house to provide the necessary care.” Brette Sember, author of “The Complete Legal Guide to Senior Care,” agrees that “shared responsibility” can mean different things to different families. She says the best way to avoid major sibling discord is to communicate; to meet in person or on a conference call and put all cards on the table. “Acknowledge that everyone has different abilities, resources, and availability,” she says. “Try to break things up into zones if possible, medical, bill paying, cleaning, food, transportation, legal, assisted living search, laundry. Give everyone some kind of responsibility, even if it means writing a check or calling mom once a day to be her sounding board.” 3. Spending and needs assessments Sember says she’s seen plenty of otherwise-rational adults torn apart by end-of-

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life care for their parents, and often the accelerant for the arguments is money. Siblings may disagree about how the parents’ money should be spent for care, in-home aides vs. assisted living vs. nursing home care vs. allowing the parents to move into one sibling’s home. “Money is a big, big issue, particularly when there may be enough left for inheritance after the parent passes,” says Sember. “All the sibling resentment you dealt with as a kid comes roaring back at this time. This is the time when power struggles in families come to the forefront.” Sometimes, says Sember, the disagreements stem from a lack of understanding of the parents’ real needs. What one sibling witnesses may be different from what another hears when talking on the phone with the parent, or when they drop by for a casual visit. “If you can get an outside assessment of what the parent needs, you will have a third party senior care advisor recommendation of how money needs to be spent,” she advises. Russo agrees: “An outside social worker or a mediator can say ‘Here’s what your parent needs. Here’s what’s available. Now what are you each willing to contribute?’ Having that outside observer can really help siblings take an objective view of the situation.”

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

New Goal: Try to Make Your Parents Proud Both Sember and Russo say the healthiest and least-conflicted families are those where the parents’ wishes are known. “In the best circumstances, Mom and Dad lead the way. They set the model for how disagreements within the family are handled, and they let their children know what they want,” says Russo. “When caregiving issues come up, families need to get together early and they need to meet regularly, while Mom or Dad can still contribute and say what they would like and discuss the resources that are available.” When Jeanie Herbert’s(ASTERISK) father died, Jeanie and her two sisters and two brothers mourned. Then they came together to discuss a wide range of issues. Their father died without a will, and that meant his estate, primarily the family home, passed half to their mother and half to the siblings. “Our mother is still mentally sharp, but she can’t get around without her motorized scooter. She really can’t live alone,” explains Jeanie. “Fortunately, one of my sisters still lives with Mom. She’s on medical disability and can’t afford her own place. With her disability and my father’s retirement, my sister and my mother can maintain a household.” Once the siblings determined that the sister-in-residence was perfectly willing to remain in the home and help their mother negotiate her day-to-day life, there was no

real question about what should be done. “We all signed our share of the house over to my sister,” says Jeanie. “It was the least we could do. And, whenever she needs help with house repairs or an unexpected bill, we take turns helping out. When my mother realized what we were doing, she teared up. She said she was so proud of us. But she really shouldn’t have been surprised, she and my father taught us how family is supposed to behave.” Although Jeanie’s situation stands in stark contrast to Roxanne’s, and to many stricken families, the end result, namely family harmony, is achievable with a little advance planning and a lot of calm reflection. “Siblings should try to look at each other as the adults they are now,” says Russo. “Everybody has grown up. Everybody has a life. Don’t assume that you are all the same people you were as kids. You aren’t. The oldest is not necessarily going to be the lead caregiver and the youngest isn’t necessarily the one who can’t function without supervision. Look at what you each have to offer today.” Note: Roxanne Green and Jeanie Herbert are pseudonyms. We changed their names to protect family privacy. ___ is an online service that matches families with great caregivers for children, seniors, pets and more. (c) 2012, Visit them at Distributed by MCT Information Services

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July 2012



Healthy Hearing

By Dr. Bettie Borton Au.D.

Let’s HEAR it for hearing aid accessories… What do I need to get the most from my hearing devices?

Wow! Today’s hearing technology array is pretty vast. Blue tooth, FM systems, and all kinds of performance related gizmos. Hearing aid accessories Dr. Bettie Borton Au. D. needed for use with your hearing aids depends on the type or model of hearing aid you purchase as well as how you will be using your hearing aids. The most basic hearing aid accessories required to use your hearing aids are hearing aid batteries. Although a few rechargeable hearing aids are available on the market, most hearing aids are powered by disposable hearing aid batteries. The size of battery will be one of the following, depending upon the size of your hearing aids: 10 (yellow), 13 (orange), 312 (brown) or 675 (blue). The life of hearing aid batteries depends on the size as well as how long the hearing aid is worn each day. On average, most hearing aid batteries last between 5 -14 days, based on usage of 16 hours per day. Hearing aid batteries will be an ongoing expense for you in order to use your hearing aids, so consider seeking audiologists who provide them as part of the maintenance package that comes with your hearing devices. Other basic hearing aid accessories will be provided by your hearing professional with purchase, such as wax prevention tools, cleaning tools and hearing aid storage cases. There are many other hearing aid The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

accessories available to enhance the use and care of your hearing aids. The following are a few of the most commonly used and are by no means “required” to use your hearing aids:

• Hearing Aid Battery Testing Device & Battery Carriers Many advanced hearing aids on the market today provide a low battery warning (a beep tone) to the user when the battery is near exhausting, so they know when to change the battery. However, for persons who do not have this feature or want to ensure their hearing aid batteries still have plenty of juice before leaving home, hearing aid battery testing devices are a handy accessory. These devices measure the remaining voltage in a hearing aid battery. They can be purchased through your hearing healthcare provider, or at commercial electronics stores. Specially designed cases that serve as battery carriers are also a handy accessory to ensure you always have a fresh battery on hand in the event your hearing aid batteries quit on you while out and about. • Hearing Aid Dehumidifier Over time, moisture can cause damage to the internal parts of hearing aids. Dehumidifiers that are specifically for hearing devices assist in removing moisture from your hearing aids. Hearing aids are placed in these devices at night with the batteries removed. The use of hearing aid dehumidifiers is recommended for persons living

in high humidity or who expose their hearing aids to excessive moisture. Hearing aid dehumidifiers are not required but can assist in the care and longevity of your hearing aids.

• Bluetooth Streaming Devices Many of today’s advanced digital hearing devices are Blue Tooth compatible – they are able to connect wirelessly to various electronic devices such as cell phones, mp3 players, and televisions. Each hearing aid manufacturer offers different wireless solutions, which can enhance the wearer’s enjoyment of television and improve communication on the telephone.

These devices are just the tip of the iceberg - there are many useful hearing aid accessories available to improve the quality of your life, and to enhance communication in a variety of listening situations. For more information on the accessories listed or to learn about other accessories compatible with your hearing aids, visit our website at and get the most from your hearing devices!. Content adapted from “Healthy Hearing” (Oticon) To learn more, visit or call for an evaluation at (334) 396-1635.

Dr. Bettie B. Borton is a licensed audiologist in Alabama, was the first board certified audiologist in Montgomery, and recently served as National Chair of the American Board of Audiology. She and her husband, Dr. Tom Borton, are the only audiologists with ABA certification in the Montgomery area.

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July 2012



Bucket List Adventure:

By Kathy Witt

Walking across the gangplank of the American Queen, with her bright red paddlewheel poised aft and her fluted smokestacks rising nobly above the bow, is like slipping back in time to that “new and marvelous world” of steamboats, bustling ports and small-town Americana that so enamored Mark Twain, and made it onto his bucket list. “S-t-e-a-m-boat a-comin’!” Twain penned in his 1883 memoir, “Life on the Mississippi,” describing the arrival of a riverboat as both a “bewildering and soul-satisfying spectacle.”

Steamboatin’ the Mark Twain Way

“She looks like she is made of lace,” inveterate steamboater Barbara Hameister said of the American Queen. The Blanchester, Ohio, resident has been on 56 overnight riverboat adventures, four of them aboard the AQ. “When I first saw the sweep of her Grand Staircase, the two-deck entrance, it’s just like the J.M. White boats,” she added, referencing the pre-eminent steamboats of the 1800s. With her re-launch in late May, the American Queen, the only authentic overnight paddlewheel steamboat in the world and its largest, is writing a new chapter in this uniquely American story, and giving a new generation of steamboaters a chance to see what Twain thought all the fuss was about. BACK WHERE SHE BELONGS “We are totally smitten with her,” said Gordon Greene, the grandson of Gordon C. Greene, founder of The Greene Line, a line of steamboats whose name was later changed to the Delta Queen Steamboat Company and from whom American Queen is descended. Greene was aboard the inaugural voyage of the legendary steamboat trio’s youngest sibling, among the Delta Queen and the Mississippi Queen. Priscilla Presley christened the youngest “Queen” and the boat glided away from her Memphis, Tenn., home port.

She had been absent from the inland waterways for four years, having laid down her smokestacks in 2008 when all overnight river vessels ceased operations due in part to the recession. With her re-launch, the American Queen and her new owner, the Great American Steamboat Company, restore America’s 200-year tradition of

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traversing the nation’s rivers and hallooing through the heartland, calling at storied river towns such as New Orleans, Natchez, Miss., Cincinnati, St. Louis and Twain’s own Hannibal, Mo. And boy is she ready for her close-up. HAIL TO THE QUEEN With her smokestacks, rails and gingerbread trim freshly painted, her stained glass windows and calliope polished, beds plumped with luxurious linens, chairs and sofas reupholstered, floors swathed in new carpets and decks swabbed (all to the tune of about $6 million), the American Queen is the very embodiment of Twain’s eloquent description. In fact, words he wrote 129 years ago aptly catalog her charms: She is “garnished with white wooden filigree work of fanciful patterns ... big chandeliers every little way, each an April shower of glittering glassdrops; lovely rainbow-light falling everywhere from the colored glazing of the skylights.” Life unfolds at a languid seven knots an hour, with passengers playing cards and dominoes in the handsome Mark Twain Gallery, overlooking the gilded dining room, tracking the boat’s progress in the chart room, rocking into a snooze on the front porch, and taking tea in the captain’s bar to piano accompaniment. Guests can tour the pilot house and engine room, play trivia, bingo classic TV show games, catch cooking demos, watch movies and whip up their own lattes and ice cream sundaes. A small pool beckons sunbathers to the Sun Deck and the spa offers an array

of treatments. They may even bump into Mark Twain himself, strolling the decks and spouting “Twainisms.” “It’s always an adventure,” said Carol Roth of Cincinnati, who has traveled with the American Queen four times. “I love to watch the paddlewheel churn up the river and watch the wake. You can’t beat sunsets on the river.” Dining is gracious and inspired, an adventure to the palette. Under the guidance of chef Regina Charboneau, an award-winning cookbook author, American Queen menus showcase regional dishes and food traditions. On visits to Cincinnati, the kitchen plates up the Queen City’s beloved chili, characterized by seasonings including cinnamon and chocolate and served over spaghetti. In Chattanooga, Tenn., it’s moon pie sundaes, a tribute to the graham cracker, marshmallow and chocolate snack that originated in the river town in 1917. “Everything I cook has a story,” Charboneau said. “Each theme menu will have something that validates it and makes it interesting with recipes that serve it well.” Evening entertainment runs the musical gamut: Big band, bluegrass, Broadway hits, Dixieland jazz, ragtime and rock and roll play in the two-story Grand Saloon, a replica of Ford’s Theatre. Top entertainers, including the “Glenn Miller Orchestra,” “The Platters” and the “Juggernaut Jug Band,” headline select voyages. OLD MAN RIVER The scenery changes at each bend in the river, from New Orleans on the lower Mississippi to St. Paul, Minn., on the upper The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

to intersections with the Tennessee, Cumberland and Ohio rivers: sweeping green vistas seen from the pilot house; the engineering marvel of canal locks; small-town slices of Americana steps from shore, the Thomas Family Winery in Madison, Ind., Yesterday’s Children: Vicksburg’s Doll and Toy Museum in Vicksburg, Miss., Louisiana’s gracious Houmas House Plantation and Gardens, where costumed guide Susan Harris gives, hands down, one of the most engaging tours you’ll ever experience. New with American Queen’s re-launch include “Explore America Passport” shore tours and a fleet of buses. immediately recognizable by their paddlewheel “wraps”, which follows the boat’s route to provide hop-on/hop-off service for seeing the sights. For instance, in Henderson, Ky., passengers board the bus and hop off to browse the Midwest’s largest selection of shoes at Simon’s Shoes downtown and, further out, to explore the John James Audubon State Park Museum and Nature Center. Additionally, an array of premium shore tours may be purchased. One of the most personal and charming of these is to Twin Oaks, Charboneau’s 1830s Natchez home. Here, guests enjoy jewelcolored cocktails and a spread of sweet and savory edibles while Chef Regina divulges secrets, tips and recipes for entertaining that is both effortless and creative. “You see things from the river you can’t see from the highway,” said Pat Carr, a retired band director from Macon, Ga., who has been aboard the American Queen six times. “You can’t duplicate the experience. “And when your trip is over, you can’t wait until you get back on.” ABOUT THE AMERICAN QUEEN

The 436-guest American Queen, built in 1995 by the legendary Delta Queen Steamboat Company, was given a multimillion dollar spit shine by her new owners, the Great American Steamboat Company, in 2011. She is the only authentic paddlewheel steamboat offering overnight voyages in America’s heartland. Calling Memphis, her home port, the American Queen offers three- to 10-night excursions to New Orleans, St. Louis, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Louisville, Ky., and Chattanooga with stops at historic towns along the way, such as Vicksburg, Paducah, Ky., and Madison. Theme cruises include “Lincoln’s Legacy: Vicksburg, Miss., to Louisville, Ky.,” Aug. 30-Sept. 7; “PBS ‘Washington Week’ Election 2012” with moderator and Managing Editor Gwen Ifill and a panel of political analysts, Sept. 28-Oct 5; Fall Foliage voyages, Sept. 13-Sept. 21, Sept. 27-Oct. 5, Oct. 11-Oct. 19 and Oct. 28-Nov. 5; Thanksgiving, Nov. 18-25; and “Walk in Elvis’ Steps,” Nov. 25-Dec. 2. State rooms are elegantly appointed and updated with flat-screen TVs; public rooms are laden with antiques and offer Internet. Other contemporary touches include fitness and wellness programs and, beginning June 28, cruiser bicycles onboard for use in port. Twenty-first century influences aside, the American Queen retains the sense of 19th-century riverboat life that so entranced Twain. Fares start at $995 a person and include a pre- or post-cruise luxury hotel stay, all bottled water and soft drinks, wine and beer at dinner and complimentary shore adventures in each port of call. Kathy Witt is a freelance writer and the author of Atlanta, Georgia: A Photographic Portrait and The Secret of the Belles. Visit Kathy’s blog at or email at (c) 2012, McClatchy-Tribune Information Services. The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

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July 2012



A Christian Perspective

By Sherry DeBray

A Wasted Taco A few weeks ago my husband and I traveled on business to San Antonio, Texas. While we were there, we visited The River Walk. Along its banks are quaint little shops and restaurants eagerly inviting you to stop and sit awhile. So we did. We chose a Mexican restaurant with riverside tables. This day it was quite crowded with people strolling up and down the river walk. Having to wait for a table, we were hungry by the time we sat down next to the river for lunch. I love Mexican food and couldn’t wait to taste the authentic cuisine. It was shortly served and what we had hoped to be delicious lived up to our anticipation. I had ordered two tacos; one was chicken and the other beef. The first bite into the chicken taco was like none I had ever had before. My pallet was in heaven.

Basking in the company of my husband, over the best taco on the face of the earth, something caught my eye. I turned to my left where people were passing between us and the restaurant and to my surprise there sat a man on the ledge next to the building. Less than four feet from my table, he had sat down and was watching as we ate. You could tell by his clothes that he was most likely homeless, or at best, in need. His hair was long and his face wrinkled and dark - a white man tanned or maybe just dirty. I looked at him with one leg crossed over the top of the other and noticed his shoes were old. But, it was the wedding ring on his finger that I remember most. I turned back to my husband and asked, “Do you see the man sitting across from us?”

As I sat eating, the man sat watching. I glanced over between the people walking by and noticed his calm presence. The patiently waiting man didn’t make me feel uncomfortable. It could have been the wedding ring on his finger. Everything else about him was dirty and worn out, except for the shinny silver band. Whatever, this man was differ-

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ent. He just sat and waited. He didn’t beg like the others we had seen earlier. He just waited.

I finished my world’s best chicken taco and left the beef one intact. Inside of me, I had a longing to pick up the beef taco bare handed and reach across, handing him what might have been the only meal he would have that day. But, I waited. My husband looked at me and said, “I know what you’re doing. You’re waiting to get a to-go box to give that man your taco.” I smiled, while the whole time I kept thinking, “Just pick up the taco and hand it to him,” but I waited.

Thoughts like, “He won’t want you to just hand him food without it being in a container,” ran wildly about my mind. So, I waited until the waiter returned to our table. “Could I have a to-go box?” I asked. The waiter was now standing between me and the man. When the waiter left to get the box, I saw the man was gone. I couldn’t believe it! I was waiting for the box. Why couldn’t he have waited a little longer? Why did I wait? Too late…

We are back home and a taco went to waste. I could have fed someone that day, but I waited too long. I missed the opportunity to feed Jesus. “Wait, Sherry, are you saying that was Jesus, homeless, watching you eat a taco?” Yes, I am.

Let me explain. In Matthew 25:31-46 Jesus tells us about the final judgment. To those that he will have enter His Kingdom he will say, “Come, you who are blessed by my Father, and inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world. For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home. I was naked,

and you gave me clothing. I was sick, and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me.” Then they will ask, “Lord, when did we ever see you hungry and feed you? Or thirsty and give you something to drink? Or a stranger and show you hospitality? Or naked and give you clothing? When did we ever see you sick or in prison and visit you? “ And the King will say, “I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these, my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!” NLT What was Jesus’ message?

The message is for us to have love and mercy for others. You don’t have to be rich to help someone. You just have to care and seize the moment. Jesus teaches us that giving of ourselves is important. So important, that he tells us it’s just as if He were the one sitting on the ledge waiting for food. What are we waiting for?

Is it for a Church committee or maybe a Government program? Don’t wait to help someone for any reason, like this writer did, putting the taco neatly in a “To Go” box. A hungry person doesn’t care about the box… just the food.

My husband and I gathered our things and with the taco in its box, headed out to try to find the man. To our dismay we were unable to locate him. After about forty minutes we gave up. It was if he had just disappeared. I don’t know if he was an angel or just a homeless man on the River Walk. Either way, I waited too long before I acted. I will never forget the spirit of that man who sat without a word waiting for me to respond. Next time, I won’t wait. I’ll pick up the taco bare handed and hand it over with a smile. Who knows, it just might be an angel of the Lord. I do know one thing for sure… it will be as if I have fed our Lord. (Matthew 25:31-46) Sherry DeBray Author/Columnist and owner of It’Za Gift in the Pepper Tree Shopping Center You can write Sherry at sherry.debray@

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

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July 2012



Fe at u re d A r t i st T h i s Month, Anne Grantham Hugghins five years ago. I tried decoAnne Grantham Hugrative painting and this set ghins was born in Red me on the path to paint on Level, Alabama out in canvas. I painted in acrylics the country on land for a long time and then in that was her grandfawatercolors for a few years. ther’s homestead in Finally, I discovered how the late 1800’s. The much I loved painting in oil. ownership of the home place is still in My paintings include a her family and she maintains a home wide range of on this property. Anne subject matgraduated from Red Team Work ter, figurative, Level High School, was landscape, floral/still life and a member of the Beta seascape. Light and shadow Club, the yearbook staff are my main focus when and a cheerleader. She painting, in my opinion, met her future husband, without these two elements, Tom, while she was in there is no painting. I look high school. Tom was also for the play of sunlight on from Red Level, he had joined the Navy and they Sugar Daddy 20x16 oil on canvas objects and the way the light bounces off the subject met while he was home which casts shadows and reflections. I on leave. After serving five years in use both brush and palette knife in my the Navy, he went to Auburn where paintings. I like the texture achieved he was in pre-med. Soon after Anne with the palette knife and the variation enrolled in Auburn, they married. They of textures when using both brush and were both students, no money and knife. very much in love. While a student at Auburn, Anne worked for Professor I feel very Appleby, the fortunate head of the to have Art Departteachers ment. After who have Tom graduated encourfrom dental aged school, they me and moved to shared Opp, Alabama, Bayou 12x24 oil on canvas their where he knowlpracticed for edge. Some of these artists are Guido thirty-seven years. This is where they Frick, a German artist and student of lived and raised their family of two girls the late Russian master, Sergei Bonand two boys. gart, Ted Goerschner, Kevin MacPherson, Charles Sovek, Ann Templeton, Anne’s Artist Statement: “My first exCamille Przewodek and I have recently perience in painting was about twenty-

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painted with Barbara Flowers. Many of the art lessons were during my travels to France, Switzerland, England, Scotland, Italy and New Zealand. My favorite is the Tuscan and Italian Lakes region. (photoof Anne painting in her studio) There is nothing like the light in the 14x11 oil on canvas Umbrian/Tuscan area. It seems to have a glow that I haven’t seen in any other place.” Anne says “I start each day standing at my easel with brush in hand, ready to greet the day. I am so blessed to have my love of painting. It has shown me the beauty of nature in a way I never thought possible. Every day is a precious gift.” Anne and Tom (now deceased) have four children, nine grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. She lives in the Bay Point area of Panama City, Florida and still enjoys her time with family in Red Level, Alabama. Visit Gallery One Fine Art 423 Cloverdale Road, Montgomery, AL Gallery Director Sandi Aplin 334.269.1114

Low Country Coastline 16x20 oil on canvas

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

By Sandi Aplin

Art & Soul DAVID CROWN Reality is an Illusion and that Illusion is Art.

David Crown, Founder and Director of the International Mezzotint Society, was born in London, England and educated at Cambridge University, The University of London and the London Hospital Medical School. He became a physician in 1947 and moved to Rochester, NY in 1948. He practiced internal medicine until 1982 when he retired. This has given him the opportunity to pursue full-time his other career as an artist. In 1983 he moved to Gainesville, Florida What is a Mezzotint? Wikipedia explains, Mezzotint is a printmaking process of the intaglio family, technically a drypoint method. It was the first tonal method to be used, enabling half-tones to be produced without using line or dot-based techniques like hatching, cross-hatching or stipple. Mezzotint achieves tonality by roughening the plate with thousands of little dots made by a metal tool with small teeth, called a “rocker.” In printing, the tiny pits in the plate hold the ink when the face of the plate is wiped clean. A high level of quality and richness in the print can be achieved. The Mezzotint printmaking method was invented by the German amateur artist Ludwig von Siegen (1609-1680).

Now,” for Santa Fe College, Gainesville, Florida. He says, “Many artists evolve over the years towards a particular kind of expression and technique easily recognized as their characteristic personal style to which, with minor variations, they adhere for the remainder of their artistic careers.

no acid or other chemicals. It is both additive and subtractive and responsive…you get back what you give, it is very versatile.”

Crown says, “This ancient type of printing was developed in the 1600’s and became very popular until the early 1800’s. The name comes from the Italian mezzo tinto, However, I always liked so many meaning middle tone. kinds of art that one could say I have been influenced by everyThe outstanding feature 13/16 Shadows one I have admired. This is why, of mezzotint is its ability to create rich, velvety blacks.” although many I had the pleasure of attending the themes are recurring, my opening reception of David Crown’s solo show “The Past is Now” at Santa images and my Fe College in Gainesville, Florida in iconography can September of 2010. The appropriately be very diverse and, moreover, named exhibition included more than 135 pieces, some dating back more can vary from than 20 years. For more information whimsical to serigo to: www.ARTBYDAVIDCROWN. ous. To do the same thing over COM and/or for the International 6/20 Strangers Mezzotint Society www.math.ufl. and over, only one kind of art, would bore me.” edu/~glover/mezzotint.html The majority of my prints are my favorite classic mezzotint black and white; They have a rich velvety surface which I find so attractive. I can recall the late Professor Ken Kerslake calling mezzotints The Cadillac of Prints. It requires

Sandi Aplin, Director of Gallery One Fine Art A free lance writer living in Montgomery, Alabama

Crown shared his Artist Statement with me on June 17th when I visited him and his wife debOrah, also an artist, in Gainesville, Florida. He was asked to write his statement for his Mezzotint Retrospective show “The Past is

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July 2012



July 2012

{12 Things} for active boomers and beyond


Summer Fest at The Waters Annual July 4th Celebration Wednesday, July 4th, 5:30 pm

The Town of Pike Road will host Summer Fest, its annual Fourth of July celebration, on Wednesday, July 4, 2012, at The Waters on Marler Road. Gates will open at 5:30 p.m., and admission is $10 per vehicle. Proceeds from this year’s celebration will benefit the building of a veterans’ memorial at the Old Town Hall site. This year’s Summer Fest will feature food, fun and fireworks. Attendees are encouraged to bring a picnic and blanket or lawn chairs to enjoy the musical offerings of Blue Denim, a group known for their performances of the oldies, classic rock and country music. The Lions Club of Pike Road will also be on-hand selling barbeque plates. The night’s fireworks extravaganza will begin at nightfall. For more information, contact Gordon Stone or Charlene Rabren at 272-9883.

MONTGOMERY DOWNTOWN Blackberry Smoke Wednesday, July 4th at 7:00pm Riverfront Amphitheatre

You can call Blackberry Smoke’s music southern rock and you wouldn’t be wrong. Or you could call it country and you wouldn’t be wrong, either. But you would be selling both the band and its legion of fans short by trying to fit them solely into

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one genre. With influences that run the gamut from country to bluegrass to metal to gospel and yes, southern rock, Blackberry Smoke is more than the sum of its diverse parts. Tickets are $10 advance, $15 day of the show.


Independence Day Celebration Wednesday, July 4

This year’s parade will start at 9 a.m. at the Autauga County Courthouse and will end at Stanley-Jensen Stadium. The theme of the parade will be “Salute to Honored Veterans, Heroes in our Hearts.” Veterans who served in the Korean War from 1950-1953 will be the parade’s Grand Marshals. After the parade, the Lion’s Club Barbecue and Camp Stew Sale will take place at Pratt Park at 10 a.m. Attendees will be able to enjoy live music, crafts and a patriotic program. In addition, there will be a children’s fun area with inflatable water slides. The annual Cardboard Boat Races will also start at 10 a.m. Teams will create boats made solely of cardboard and duct tape. Prizes will be distributed for the longest floating boat, the most dramatic sink, most creative and more. That night, a fireworks presentation will be held at Stanley Jensen stadium at 6 p.m. The Prattville Pops and the Prattville Community Chorus will perform at the event.

Web Design, LLC says: “Information provided by this seminar will allow non profit organizations, many of whom operate without an IT staff, the ability to make good decisions when planning or redesigning a website.” ARRAC, 300 W. Tallassee St. Wetumpka, AL 36092. Reservations Are Required - call Marilyn Winborn 334.478.4862


Fables Here & Then Inaugural Production, Children’s Theatre of The Cloverdale Playhouse Thurs-Sat, July 12-14, various times Stories & legends from around the world presented with music and magic by young actors from our Cloverdale Playhouse Troupe. Will delight audiences of all ages. ADULTS $10, CHILDREN $5. (334) 262-1530

MONTGOMERY DOWNTOWN Second Saturdays Riverfront Festivals Riverfront Amphitheater Saturday, July 14th, 5-8 pm


Join us for our next Second Saturday Riverfront Festival on June 9th as Montgomery’s

ARRAC announced that it will host a free ‘Do it Yourself Website” overview for area non-profit organizations. Attendees will learn industry best practices for: Identifying website requirements, developing good content, getting a website online, getting the word out, website maintenance, free and low cost options. Marilyn Winborn, owner of Winborn

Riverfront comes alive from 5 p.m. until. Free concert and interactive activities for all ages include more inflatables, arts and crafts, a magician and balloon artist, courtesy of Dynamite Magic and Balloons! More food concessions will be offered courtesy of Cantina, Dreamland BBQ, Peppertree Steaks

The Alabama River Region Arts Center “D.I.Y. Website Solutions for Non-Profit Organizations” Thursday, July 12, 4-5:30 pm

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and Wine, Cheezies Pizza, Nancy’s Italian Ice, Bruster’s Ice Cream, Catfish One, Mama’s Sack Lunch and The Great American Cookie Company. Don’t forget to visit the new addition to Riverfront Park! The SandBAR at the Silos is located high atop Riverfront Park, overlooking the Alabama River.


Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo Friday-Sunday, Jul 20-22 The Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo, a Project of the Mobile Jaycees, is the oldest and largest multi-species saltwater tournament in the country. Founded in 1929, the fishing rodeo now attracts Over 3,000 anglers and 75,000 spectators. The rodeo is a Southern Kingfish Association sanctioned event. There are 30 categories with prizes awarded for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place in all categories. One Master Angler is also awarded along with cash prizes for King Mackerel (Open and Recreational), Speckled Trout and Big Game Jackpots. See website for more details.


Coosa River Music & Arts Festival “Cookin’ on the Coosa” BBQ Cook-Off Wetumpka Gold Star Park Saturday, July 21. 2-10 pm A little slice of New Orleans and its music in Wetumpka, Alabama. Come and join in the

fun and bring the whole family. There will be vendors, food, activities for kids, and, of course, lots of music! From zydeco to blues to jazz and best of all, IT’S FREE!!! You’re sure to find something to dance to! Mark your calendar for July 21st, the fun begins at 2pm and lasts until 10pm!


WHITNEY: One Moment in Time The Cloverdale Playhouse Fri, July 27, 7 pm, Sat., July 28, 2 & 7 p.m.

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The Playhouse hosts ASU’s Alpha Psi Omega National Theatre Honor Society for this musical tribute to the much-loved and muchmissed Whitney Houston. The piece is conceived and directed by ASU faculty member Anthony Stockard and proceeds from these performances will benefit the honor society’s Seek a Life Useful scholarship. Tickets are $10. Tickets will be available at the door one hour before each show. For more information, please call (334) 229-5800.

‘Mean and Surly’ on the tombstone.” (Dramatists Play Service) This production will be presented in the historic Red Door Theatre. Evening performances on August 2, 3, and 4, are preceded by a seated dinner (reservations required). The Sunday, August 5, performance is a 2:30 p.m. matinee. Contact (334) 7388687 or for info. Visit to learn more about the event and the theatre.


Helen Suzman: Fighter for Human Rights Troy University Rosa Parks Museum Through August 27

This year, Aquapalooza becomes AMPalooza on beautiful Lake Martin. Headlining this annual concert is the Charlie Daniels Band along with performances by The Vegabonds, Rexton Lee and Brent Cobb. Gates open 4:15pm Show time 5:15-11pm. Advance tickets $20. $30 day of show. Children 6 and under free.

A new exhibit will explore the life and legacy of South African human rights activist Helen Suzman. Suzman was a member of the South African Parliament from 1953-1989 and was the sole opposition voice condemning apartheid during the 13-year period (19611974) when she was the governing body’s only member of the Progressive Party. The exhibit explores nearly four decades of Suzman’s life and vision through photographs, personal letters, quotations from speeches and news articles. For more information please contact Viola Moten at 334-241-8701 or



“Not since STEEL MAGNOLIAS has a more colorful and dysfunctional group of Southern eccentrics gathered below the Mason-Dixon line. When the patriarch of the Turpin family keels over dead in the first scene, the struggle to get him buried involves the whole clan, including the not-so-grieving widow who wants to put

Turn your lazy Sunday into fun and relaxation by bringing the family to the Museum for a free Docentled tour from 1 to 2 P.M. You will explore our galleries while learning a bit of history behind each piece. For more information please contact the Museum at 334.240.4365.


AMPalooza presented by Russell Marine Lake Martin Amphitheater Saturday, July 28

Dearly Departed at the Red Door Theatre Thursday-Sunday, August 2-5

Sundays at One Montgomery Museum of Fine Art Every Sunday in July

It ’s a Great Time to Be Booming! Please submit any events/pictures to

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July 2012



By Greg Budell


COME TO LA! Has anyone seen the Miami Dolphins?

Tide and Miami Dolphins. But mounted on the wall behind the reception desk is a non-football, framed poster that many of my listeners have made it a point to see.

They used to be the most reliable team in the NFL. Forever it seemed, Joe Robbie owned them and Don Shula coached them. The Dolphins were in the playoffs every year and Dan Marino led them there.

Bob is still a regular guest on my shows here. We have talked about the old days, when Number 73 was a regular on my WAXY (now “Big”) 106 morning show.

They may not have won a Super Bowl during that era but they won a lot more often than they lost.

I was on the air when the news broke that Coach Shula was out and St. Jimmy Johnson was in to take the team to “the next level”. WOW! Someone must have pressed the “Basement” button because that’s the level where they’ve settled after a decade and a half of decline. Granted, I live in Alabama now, but I have no idea who owns them. I don’t know who the coach is, or the quarterback- or the name of the stadium they have all to themselves now that the only champion team that ever played in it- the Marlins, have stupidly moved south to Miami. To happier times …

For seven straight years in the 80s, every Monday during the NFL season, my radio studio door would fling open around 7 AM and a big man with a big heart would walk through- Bob Baumhower. Bob was the heart of the “Killer B” Bee-fense. They were a ferocious group of tough guys on the field- but gentlemen off the field. Baumhower-Bokamper-Brudzinski, Blackwood et all- that was a helluva combination.

Bob stopped by to talk about the Fish and the game the previous day. We’d hit a few game details but didn’t get bogged down in jock-talk. Over time, Bob became a real part of our team and joined the fun. One day he let on that he was a pre-med student for a year, so we did a show called “Ask Almost Dr. Baumhower”. Listeners called with medical questions and Almost Doctor Bob advised everyone to get a second opinion. He’d played for just 2 coaches between college and the NFL-Bear Bryant at Alabama and Shula. It explains why he’s such a characterwhile being a character guy. Late in his Dolphin days, Bob opened a restaurant back home in Alabama. After he retired

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In this poster, Bob is seated wearing his Dolphin jersey, and is surrounded by my on-air team. The feature is big Bob holding my sidekick from those days- Don Agony- in a headlock.

and moved back to “Sweet Home”, he soon had a chain of them around the state, including one in Montgomery. The first week I lived here, I stopped by Bob’s Montgomery restaurant and asked if he ever came by. It turned out the location was hosting a big Red Cross fundraiser the following Wednesday and Bob would be there.

We hadn’t seen each other in 16 years. I showed up and it didn’t take long to spot the gentle giant working the big crowd. I positioned myself at the end of a meet-n-greet line waiting my turn. There are takes and double takes, but nothing quite like a Baumhower double take. “Sapsucker!” he yelled. “What are you doing here, driving through town?” He hugged me so hard I thought my liver would fly out of my nostrils. “Uh, no. I live here now, believe it or not!” I stepped back and let my organs settle into their normal position.

It was the best reunion of my life not involving a woman. Now that moment seems so long ago. I am in my 8th year in Montgomery and am happy to report things are going incredibly well for me. And Bob.

His restaurant, “Baumhower’s,” is the most popular place in town. When you walk in, you’re in a sports museum, filled with memorabilia from his playing days with the Crimson

This photo was made 25 years ago when Miami Vice was still popular on TV, and the Miami Vice look- hot pastels and unstructured jackets- was popular in the men’s department at Burdine’s (now Macy’s). That explains why I’m wearing a pink jacket, yellow shirt and aqua tie. Hideous- but then, it was hip. I never dreamed that poster would become a tourist attraction in Montgomery. Speaking of tourism, Bob and I have a suggestion for you if you haven’t planned your summer vacation yet.

Why not check out Orange Beach, Alabama? “LA” is the best kept secret on the planet-a beautiful spot for a vacation. The Wharf at Orange Beach is phenomenal, with first class waterside condos for rent, and a Baumhower’s restaurant in each of two buildings nestled next to the Intracoastal Waterway. His fishing themed “Compleat Angler” is extraordinary. Wharf guests have free access to an incredible water park next door and everything is a walk away. Ringo Starr will be playing The Wharf Amphitheater on the 4th! Fun for the whole family! I finally got out of town for a couple days with the gang and we loved it. You can Google “The Wharf at Orange Beach” to get the info.

Meanwhile, I’m happy to report that one of the all-time great Dolphins is still winning, and our friendship is still going strong after 30 years. Even if the Dolphins aren’t.

Greg Budell lives in Montgomery with his dog Hershey. He’s a 25 year veteran of radio who hosts the Greg & Susan morning show 6-9 am and Happy Hour 3-6 pm on Newstalk 107.9, Greg can be reached at The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

The River Region’s 50+ Lifestage Magazine

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July 2012



BOOM! July 2012  
BOOM! July 2012  

The River Region's 50+ Lifestage Magazine