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INDEX Fall Thoughts By Bernadette Gentry................................................................ 3 Living in the Country - Happily after By Maria Jeffs........................... 4 Destination Local - Art & Apples By Christy Cox................................... 6 Remembering Back - 1949 By Clifton J. (Jerry) Noble Sr................. 10

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New England Superstition By Kathleen Mitchell.................................... 12


Country Cooking By Christy Cox....................................................................... 15


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Granvvill Harvest Fair ........................................................................................ 14 The Hole In One I almost Witnessed By Kris Sanders...................... 18 Retirement Doctor By Enrique J. Alvarez................................................... 20 Town Crier................................................................................................................ 21 Classifieds ................................................................................................................ 27

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month Publisher: Carole Caron Editor: Lyssa Peters Layout/Design Artists: Lyssa Peters, Christy Cox, Martin Lee, Rachel Allessio Advertising Manager : Christy Cox Advertising Consultant: Kris Sanders

Advertisers should check advertisements the first day. Southwoods Magazine shall not be liable for failure to publish an ad, for typographical errors or errors in publication except to the extent of the cost of the ad for the first month’s insertion. Adjustment for errors is limited to the cost of that portion of the ad wherein the error occurred. Our usual publication date is between the 3rd and the 7th of the month. To insure placement, ad copy should be submitted by the 20th of the month preceding insertion.

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Fall Thoughts By Bernadette Gentry

Standing amidst the fallen brown leaves so deep they cover the tops of my shoes, and feeling the strong wind blow through me, my mind drifts back to my childhood days... The crispness of the air, the warmth of the afternoon sun after the cooler morning requiring jackets or sweaters, Finding chestnuts--enthralled b their polished brown/red color, more beautiful to me than any colored gems in rings-Collecting hickory nuts, cracking them open and testing their sweet meat, Bringing some home to my Mother to decorate the top of my birthday cake, the beauty of the red leaves capturing the essence of life it seemed tome, Raking the yellow maple leaves with my Dad from the one tree we had in the back yard, Thoughts of Halloween, trick or treating, and what costume to make floating through my mind. Being older now, I am more aware of the difficulties and limitations winter will bring. Still, I give thanks to God for as each season changes, it affords new opportunities to grow and become a more caring and kinder person.




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5 43 Sp ringf i e l d S t . • P. O. Box 195 • A g awa m , MA Telep ho ne 413- 789- 6300 • Fa c s i m i l e 4 1 3 - 7 8 6 - 6 6 7 7 SOUTHWOODS MAGAZINE October 2013 PAGE 3

Living in the Country - happily ever after

By Maria Jeffs


elieve it or not, many people still enjoy the country life and country living. For some it is the simple feeling of connecting with their roots and their farming ancestors. Others are idealists and entrepreneurs in their own right, spearheading the move from city to country life all on their own and then there are some who just find the inexpensive lifestyle to enticing to pass up. The majority of people automatically associate country living with farmlands and the raising of cattle, sheep, chickens or some other variety of livestock; and while many people who

make their permanent residence in the country do own a horse or two, or maybe even several chickens, one can fully enjoy the country life without all of the chores and physical challenges of farming. Some may purchase a lot of vacant land, maybe an acre or two large and build a small cottage on the site. Others prefer

Country Life the nostalgia of a lived-in rustic ranch house or an elegant and beautiful log cabin. Yet still, some prefer making their residence in the old style farmhouse and pole barn - all our common establishments you can see while cruising down the country roads. Tractors and riding lawnmowers are almost a necessity for the sizable lawns and yards you can find in the country. Another very commonplace vehicle is a four-wheeler or ATV, used to access the dirt or gravel roads that make up the majority of old country style streets and roads.

Do You Love Country Living? Do you have a favorite country story, recipe, or family tradition? Do you have a skill or a tool, passed down from grandparents that you still use today?

Southwoods Magazine is looking for your input!

To share your experiences or memories: “Like� us on Facebook Email us at or send to us at Southwoods Magazine, P.O. Box 1106, Southwick, MA 01077








One of the best parts of living in such a remote location is the stunning views. Whether you are into bird-watching, star gazing, trail walking or just sitting in a chair on your patio, the country can really afford the keen eye some fantastic views that can be seen anywhere else. However, many people agree that the best part of country living is the serene and peaceful quietness that can only be found miles away from civilization out in the country. Here there are very few if any major avenues or streets that are congested with traffic, smog and noise. Of course most don't want to go completely into seclusion - a couple miles or so from the nearest store is usually fine for the majority of people who want to live the country lifestyle. This however comes with drawbacks too, as these stores usually keep a low inventory, thereby resulting in higher prices than one might pay at a popular chain of retail or grocery stores in the city. The effect this has on people is actually quite minimal, however, as most people have at least some sort of means to grow or raise some food on their own. Indeed it is certainly a different and much simpler way of life when you are out living in the country. Many refer to it as God's country, and that's exactly what it is. For the people that are brave enough to try it and even for those who are lucky enough to be able to enjoy it there is no better living than country living. This article is brought to you courtesy of Fantastic Photos, a website photo gallery filled with pictures of country life. For more information visit: Article Source:


W s

o n T By Christy Cox

Art and Apples F

all in New England is a great time to enjoy some different outdoor activities. My daughter was home for the weekend recently and wanted to do something fall-ish with me. We decided to go apple picking and check out Art in the Orchard, a sculpture installation at Park Hill Orchard in Easthampton. I had heard of it at Art Walk Easthampton this August with my friend Phyllis. Using my mapquest printout, we were able to find the Orchard easily. Once we arrived, we could see some of the sculptures and people walking around or heading to the apple trees. As it happened, we were there on the first day of fall and the weather was perfect. The sun was warm and there were only a few clouds in the sky. We were only a little chilly when there was a breeze or the sun was hidden behind a cloud. We stopped at the information kiosk and the woman working there gave us a couple of tips about the walk. We also picked up a

trail guide that told us about the sculptures. My daughter and I were armed with our smart phones and our cameras, ready to take photos of our day. And luckily, as you begin the walk you come to a perfect photo op, a “Big Red Frame,” a bonus piece installed by a local frame shop. We asked a passer by to take a couple of pictures of us. Then we enjoyed watching a family spend about 20 minutes doing many different fun poses there. What great picture memories they are going to have. After finishing the first part of the trail we crossed the street to the farm stand where we were able to get something to drink before continuing along the rest of the trail. As our journey around the next part of the trail began, we had to stop and check out the roosters and chickens running around the area. Though normally I am not a big fan of roosters and chickens, there was one fellow who was very colorful.





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We couldn’t resist trying to get some good shots of him. Along that side of the orchard, many of the sculptures are in the trees, so you need to look carefully so as not to miss any. There are 22 in all. We really enjoyed seeing all the different sculptures. My ultimate favorite (and I think my daughter agrees) is the Shed. This piece is covered on three sides with mirrors, which, according to the guide, “allows the reflected environment to dictate its form.” In effect, the building almost disappears, very cool. Our second favorite piece was The Apple Pickers. It was fun to add ourselves into the picture pretending to pick apples. There we were also fortunate to have someone take a picture of us pretending to pick apples with the sculpted workers. My other favorite piece was the bronze sculpture of a young woman, Dryad, who is sitting on an oak tree stump. After we finished the sculpture trail, we headed to the trees for some apple picking. My daughter climbed the first tree that looked inviting. Of course, the first apple she picked she had to taste-test. It was yummy. As we went around to the different trees, we realized there were ladders available to reach the apples near the top. Art in the Orchard is a self-guided walk through the sculpture trail on the Park Hill Orchard property. The sculpture exhibition and festival is taking place between August 13 and Halloween on the grounds of a working apple orchard. The sculpture trail showcases 22 three dimensional outdoor works and installations created by local and regional artists. This event is free and open during daylight hours. There are also additional events that take place on the

Far left, Author and her daughter pick apples with the pickers in the sculpture, near left, author picking apples, above, one of the 22 sculptures at Art in The Orchard

weekends. You can check the events calendar on Park Hill Orchards website. On the day we were there we heard the Joe Blumenthal Ukulele players strumming and sing popular tunes. Park Hill Orchard is located at 82 Park Hill Rd., Easthampton, MA 01027, (413) 303-0335, To find out more visit


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Russell Station, 1949. Carrington Road goes up Mountainside on right. Old railroad location eft on far side of river.

Remembering Back - 1949 M

By Clifton (Jerry) Noble, Sr.

y journal keeping began the second day after graduating from Westfield High School at age 16 in June 1942. Early that morning I climbed down from my upper Pullman berth on the New York Central’s, steam-powered Lakeshore Limited to go to the men’s room/ Not wanting to disturb my (widowed) mother, Minnie Emerson Noble, still

asleep in the lower berth, I headed for the club car to start recording the trip in a 3 by 5-inch lined notebook. I found three men in business suits already settled there. Noise of the train’s wheels did not disturb the quiet of the car. I chose a chair at a distance but couldn’t help overhearing low voices discussing what Jay Gould (or some such person) would have done. In dim daylight I began my journal. My boyhood friend who took me on hikes had been Philip Cole. He was thirteen years old when I was nine and lived directly west across High Street. He had nicknamed his widowed mother, Nonny. Imitating Phil I nicknamed my mother Monny. Papa died a few weeks before my 10th birthday in March 1936. At first Monny tried clerking 44 hours a week at $10 for a bicycle factory. Then she took a few brief housekeeping jobs, and finally made appointments to sell dresses for the Ward Stilson Company. She was successful enough to pay rent, buy food and save for the $208+ train fare to Fresno, California. She kept in touch by letter with relatives, and her sister, Maude Kelly, suggested we come and stay with her and husband Walter. She even offered to pay for our train tickets. Not daring to expose money while traveling, Monny rolled up the bulk of her ($500) savings and put it in a cylindrical powder box with the powder on top. She was 55. As soon as she got on the train she relaxed and looked forward to four days traveling. She had made sandwiches so we didn’t go to a dining car until we got on the diesel-powered Scout from Chicago. Fortunately events recorded in that first little journal were fixed enough in mind so that when I needed to describe the trip for my 2007 book California Here We Come, maps were sufficient to jog memory. The journal had been lost. I began buying bigger notebooks (100 sheets, 200 pages), and wrote down events every few days before forgetting them. This was a big help especially with names. The habit continued until 1953 when survey work and other activities limited record keeping to job progress and daily expenses. In 1961 diary keeping became a necessity. I rely on memory for years without journals. In Russell town of 1949 some essential offices were in private houses. Half way down the south side of Main Street a side door on a wide driveway opened into the post office. Numbered boxes were stacked on the counter behind glass so postmistress Gertrude Laramie or her sister Mildred Belding had to


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ily lived upstairs. He gave us a kithand you your mail. Box rent was ten but we took it back. Our remod$1.20 a year. Their sister Beatrice eled schoolhouse with second floor (third of the Mortimer “girls”) was openings at the top of walls was too married to Dr. Jacob Arenstam and dangerous for kittens. lived directly across the street East of Harold’s grocery was In the house just west of the a house on the corner of dead-end church a side door opened into the Lincoln Street and beyond that little room where the telephone opfields and the Westfield River with erator managed her switchboard. its plank-decked iron bridge. In the People on “party lines” were alertfield south of the bridge approach ed to their calls by the type of ringwas a wide cut between large rocks -two or three short or one long and where the railroad used to come one short (for 11) and one long and through from its river trestle. As a two short (for 12). Parties in their Looking southeast to river bridge, 1949 child I had seen one of the little old homes had a generator in a wooden engines parked in Woronoco, and could imagine it pulling its box with crank under the telephone instrument. They could train into the red station on what is now Frog Hollow Road. “crank” calls to folks on their own line or “crank” one long for After the Boston and Albany moved its tracks exclusively to the operator. Telephone wires were grounded. During a thunthe east side of the river, the old station became a dwelling for a derstorm I stood on the schoolhouse doorstep when lightning poor family and eventually a barn for Charles Peckham. struck a pole up the road. The fireball zinged down the line, out From the end of the river bridge roads branched right to my access wire and down the side of the house to the ground the Westfield River Paper Company and left to the “new” Rusrod with a vicious snap. sell station (closed even in 1949). I was told local trains would Almost halfway down Main Street Old Westfield Road stop if you stood out by the track and signaled. Beyond the stabranches south. This was the route of the trolley car to Huntion Carrington Road had a tarred surface for the half mile up tington. The granite abutment of the trolley’s bridge can still be to the Montgomery town line but north of that was gravel and seen on the north shore of Stage Brook. All along the route are spring mud. Trees, killed by forest fires from engine sparks, visible retaining walls which made room for the tracks beside had not yet obscured the view downstream to the river bridge. existing roads. I believe the line stopped running in 1926. At the town line a vertical two-foot tile caught wonderful water At the far end of the corner house Leon Coash and his wife from a spring pipe (and still does). ran variety Bridge Store. Leon also had a band which played at Todd Morden Lodge in Plainfield. That was too far away for me, but I did play guitar and sing with him for a high school dance in Huntington. A little brook runs under Russell’s Main Street just east of the fire station. Then there was a long, two-story building. At street level Harold Landis had his grocery store. He and fam-


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needed from spells that could be cast before the witch was discovered. It was believed that witches could Do you avoid walknot enter a home ing under ladders, feel nerwhere apples were kept, vous if a black cat crosses where one door was hung your path, knock on wood, or upside down, where items such put some change in a wallet you as dried cloves of garlic or horsegive as a gift? shoes were hung over the entrance, New England is rich in superor where a bag of salt was kept under stition and Halloween’s arrival will find the bed in the main bedroom. If a witch did youngsters peering at the sky for witches on By Kathleen Mitchell manage to cast a spell on someone, the person brooms and conjuring up ideas of spooky hapcould rid himself of it by placing seven drops of penings. While most parents will insist, for vegetable oil in a dish of cold water with a small piece of iron in safety’s sake, on their children taking a flashlight when trickit, than rubbing his finger around the edge in a clockwise posior-treating, years ago people were told to carry a flashlight aftion for three minutes. Although this reduced the power of the ter midnight on Halloween as it was believed that spirits could spell, it had to be done seven times in one day with two hours only perform evil deeds in complete darkness. between each rubbing if the spell was to be completely broken. Belief in witchcraft was high for many years in New EngMedicine was primitive during the 1800’s and doctors land and during this time our ancestors blamed witches for were so scarce it was not uncommon for families to have to deeverything from sickness to turning their milk and ale sour. pend upon their own beliefs to cure illnesses. Many of these Although witchcraft was punishable by death, protection was beliefs had a medical base to them while others were purely superstition. It was believed that frogs cause rather than cure warts. Spices worn around the neck were believed to prevent many ailments. Those who wished to prevent sore throats wore cloves of garlic around the neck, while the wearing of a single pierced nutmeg was believed to prevent boils, body lice, croup and lung disorders. Rings were made of dried potatoes and worn on the middle finger of the right hand in the belief that this would prevent arthritis, while the wearing of a necklace made of corn kernels was said to prevent headaches. Blowing tobacco smoke into someone’s ear was a cure for the pain of an earache, while sleeping with the skin of a black cat on one’s chest was said to cure respiratory problems.

Are you Superstitious?



Food was an important part of the early settlers’ lives as much of their time and labor was spent in the growling harvesting and, for the wife, cooking from scratch all that they need to survive on. Thus many beliefs arose concerning food and its consumption. People believed that if you served your guest a piece of pie with the wedge pointing towards him he would be sure to receive an important call or letter in the near future. Spilling salt on the table meant bad luck, although this could be offset by tossing some of it over your shoulder with the thumb and forefinger of your right hand. It was believed that spilling salt on the table also meant that you would soon quarrel with your best friend. An unmarried man who ate the last bit of food at a meal without being asked to do so by his host would never find a wife while the man who ate the last bit of food at his host’s urging would marry a beautiful woman. Food was the mainstay of the body as well as the mind and it was believed that eating a serving of either eggs beans, oysters, or fish daily would result in a bigger and healthier brain. Early death was frequent due to hard work and lack of medicine and doctors, and many beliefs arose in an attempt to predict or prevent it. People never spoke negatively about someone who had died as it was believed this would cause a member of their own family to die within a year. When a death occurred in remote areas, the beehives were turned and bees were told the bad news. To do otherwise might result in the bees attacking and killing a member of the dead person’s family. Moving sick people from one room to another was believed to cause death, and chirping cricket in the house set the occupants to worrying as it meant someone in the family would die soon. The howling of a dog after midnight meant that someone in the neighborhood would die. There were many things that were believed to be signs of death and due to its frequency

these superstitions flourished. With farms located miles from each other settlers were often lonesome and the idea of having company was a welcome one. Housewives looked form signs that visitors would be arriving and many interesting beliefs arose to predict when and from where visitors might come. Itching eyebrows meant that company would soon arrive. If the right eyebrow itched, the visitor would be a man; if the left one itched, a woman. Accidentally rhyming your words meant company would be coming soon. Company was also expected if a cat was seen washing itself; the visitor would come from the direction in which the cat faced. If a pair of scissors was accidentally dropped and they stuck in the floor, guests could be expected. If one wished for female company a fork could be dropped on the floor-if it stuck up in the floor you would get your wish. A knife dropped in the same manner would bring a male visitor. Living without frequent contact from friends, neighbors and relatives meant a lonely life for many settlers, having neither newspapers, telephones or television to amuse them. Thus left to their own devises, superstitions flourished. Whole books have been written about early beliefs seem quite strange, the people who invent them were not so different from us. If a friend told them something new, or something that had worked for them, they would try it themselves and if it proved true, began to believe it. Although we are better educated today, many of these beliefs and superstitions still linger, passed on to us by our grandparents and their grandparents before them. In spite of all we do, much in life depends upon luck and sometimes that “knock on wood” makes us feel a little more in control! Reprinted from Southwoods October 1984 issue.

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HARVEST FAIR Columbus Day Weekend

Fall Foliage at its Finest! October 12, 13, & 14 The Town of Granville is nestled in the Berkshire Hills West of Southwick on Rt. 57, South of Westfield and North of Granby, Connecticut. Apples, our major crop, are for sale all around town. Warm apple pie with a slice of cheddar cheese is sold at the 1802 (Old) Meeting House on the hill in Granville Centre. Buses shuttle visitors from the Fair venues each day between and parking lots of the School, Town Hall, and the Meeting House. Wherever you stop you will partake of wonderful food, vendors, and displays of arts and crafts.

Special attractions at the Granville Harvest Fair this year: • The Library: the Giant Book Sale, a great Raffle and the best Hot Dogs in Town • The School: the most vendors, pony rides, and gumbo soup • The Town Green: alive with Food, craft Vendors and fun for all ages.

Guidance For Inner Peace li i





• Noble & Cooley Drum Museum: daily tours and their vendors have food and drink. • On Saturday the Lions Club presents: the Annual Antique and Special Interest Car Show in the Village • Inside at the Old Meeting House: an exhibit of Rug Hooking, craft vendors and enjoy a slice of Hot Apple Pie with cheese • On the lawn of the Old Meeting House: the Annual Scarecrow Convention and a display of old and new Tractors; • And opposite the Town Hall at the top of the hill in Granville Centre, there is a demonstration of cider making at the Harvest Hill Farm.

Hooked rug display to be held at the Old Meeting House

Over 20 years ago, a Granville artist, Kris Sullivan, taught a group of friends and neighbors the wonderful craft of hooking rugs. Rug Hooking is a craft brought to America by the first settlers. Early Weavers in Europe left strips of unused fabric accessible for workers to take and use at home. These strips were then pulled through a porous cloth (burlap/linen etc.) from the back. Today, we use a small rug hook to pull strips of fabric or yarn creating interesting designs on the front. The more colorful, the better! Hooked rugs are used today to cover almost any surface. The photo, above, is a chair cover on display.

: e


: t -

g d

t r

By Christy Cox

This is a recipe that I just tried and addapted to my likings. Apple season is a great time to try this.

1 cup all-purpose flour 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1/4 teaspoon salt 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature 2/3 cup sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 large egg 1/2 cup buttermilk 1 1/2 cups peeled, chopped apples tablespoon of raw sugar (demerara, turbinado or Sugar in the Raw) cinnamon for sprinkling

Preheat oven to 400 degrees, butter and flour an 8-inch round cake pan. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt; set aside. In a separate bowl, beat butter and sugar with an electric mixer until pale and fluffy, about two minutes (or you can beat by hand). Add vanilla and egg and beat well. With the mixer set to low speed (or beat by hand), beat in 1/3 of the flour mixture. Add half the buttermilk and continue beating on low speed until incorporated. Scraping down sides of bowl as necessary, beat in another 1/3 of flour mixture then remaining buttermilk. Finally beat in the



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last 1/3 of the flour mixture until just combined. Add in 1/2 cup of the chopped apples. Scrape batter into the cake pan, smoothing the top with a spatula. Scatter apple pieces evenly over the top of the cake batter then sprinkle evenly with raw sugar. Sprinkle lightly with cinnamon. Bake in a preheated 400-degree oven until cake is golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool in the pan for ten minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool until warm. Invert onto a plate. Serve plain, or with whipped cream and salted caramel sauce.

4 cups air popped popcorn 1 cup candy corn 3 cups cocoa puffs cereal 10 Halloween Oreos, 1 cup Autumn Colored chopped into bite sized pieces plain M&M’s or Reese’s Pieces 1 cup pretzels 1 cup salted peanuts Pour all ingredients into a large bowl and stir. yield: 12 servings

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By Kris Sanders

It started out as a typical Saturday in the spring of 1970. It had rained early that day but turned into a beautiful afternoon. I had stayed in the house because I had not been feeling well. That was all about to change for this 11 year old boy. My dad and our neighbor Mr. Burrell decided to go golfing that afternoon and my dad had a great idea that I should go along and be his caddy. You see, his take on this was, that getting outside and taking in the fresh air would do me some good. I had never caddied before, but I accepted the assignment none the less. My dad and I got into our car, a ‘67 Chrysler Station Wagon, with his golf clubs and proceeded to pick up Mr. Burrell

on our way to Edgewood Golf Course. We arrived at the golf course and before we reached the clubhouse my dad explained what my duties were as a caddy. He took out a giant golf bag with a pull cart attached to it. Although I did not have to carry the bag over my shoulder, it still required some strength to pull those clubs around. We headed for the clubhouse to check in. My dad and Mr. Burrell decided to play the back nine (holes 10 – 18). So we got started and as I watched them play, I observed that these men knew how to golf. I was taking it all in and really enjoying myself. I also admired how Photo by Steve beautiful the course was up close. The Brudzinski of B day would play a big part in my life. Photography We approached the 13th hole, a par 3, an elevated tee box looking over a pond to an elevated green surround by two sand traps. As my dad and Mr. Burrell got ready to tee off, I decided to head for the soda machine to get a coke. After all the hard work, I deserved a soda. As I approached the soda machine, I heard all this noise. My dad told me to go check out the green....he thought Mr. Burrell had just made a hole-inone. So I ran down towards the hole and as I got there I could see a golf ball resting in the cup submerged in water! It was an image I will never forget and a very special moment... my first time ever on a golf course and somebody got a hole-in-one! I went on to caddy for my dad on many Sunday mornings through the years and never again witnessed a hole-in-one. It is a rare feat. That day gave me my love for the game of golf and I started to play as well. I also went on to work at Edgewood Golf Course for Bill Arnold for the next nine years.

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A Bag Full of Pills By Ellen A. Latour, RN, ANP-BC,NP-C, DNP

As people live longer and develop more chronic illnesses, more medications will be prescribed. Polypharmacy is the use of 5 or more prescribed medications. Research has shown that the average person over the age of 65 takes at least 4.5 prescription medications at a time plus 2 over the counter (OTC) medications. In addition, patients over the age of 65 constitute 13% of the population; consume 40% of OTC medications and 34% of prescribed drugs due to chronic illness, co-morbidities, over-prescribing, altered pharmacokinetics (what the body dose to the drug) and poor adherence. The problem of Polypharmacy is that many drugs are associated with a greater potential for adverse drug reactions. Medication-related problems are responsible for 106,000 deaths at a cost of $85 billion to our healthcare system. In addition, 30% of hospital admissions of elders are due to drug-related problems with 51% of all deaths caused by adverse reactions to medications occurring in patients over 60 years of age. How can Polypharmacy and/or adverse drug reactions be prevented? First; open communication between the patient and provider. Don’t’ be afraid or reluctant to ask questions. Second; health care professionals should be aware of the risks and fully evaluate all medications at each patient visit. One effective approach in taking a drug history is the “brown bag” method. The patient brings in to each visit with their provider all the medications they are taking, including OTC medications,topical preparations, herbal supplements and vitamins. This allows the provider and the patient to review medications, doses and frequencies against what is in the patient’s record. Medications Reconciliation will avoid omissions, duplications, dosage and/or frequency errors and drug interactions. Because people are living longer Polypharmacy is not always preventable. Patients need to play an active role in their health care by establishing a trusting relationship and partnering with their provider.

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By Enrique J. Alvarez, The Retirement Doctor®, Suffield, CT


My mother may need medical care and possibly she may need to go into a nursing home. Is there any way of protecting her assets? Art S.


It is a shame that many people work hard all of their lives only to have a great deal of what their savings on medical care. Regulations for qualification for Medicaid depend on the state that you reside in at the time you apply for Medicaid. For example, if you went to a nursing home in Florida, you would have to qualify based on Florida Medicaid rules. Many states don’t require you to live in their state for a very long period of time to qualify as a resident for Medicaid purposes. This is important to know because many individuals have second homes and they may prefer to get their care in another state. I did some research a few years ago and found that in Vermont if you signed a statement saying that you wanted to go back to your home, your home became a protected asset. In other

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states, a home can provide excellent asset protection if there is a surviving spouse and in some cases, siblings or children if they meet certain regulations. See the example below: Say your parents have a $300,000 home and $500,000 in investments. If an individual goes to nursing home, the surviving spouse would be allowed to keep a small fraction of the investments and the house. However, if they sold their home and purchased a home for $700,000, the $700,000 home would be protected as long as the surviving spouse did not predecease the spouse in the nursing home. The remaining $100,000 worth of investments would have been protected as well. If the spouse in the nursing home predeceases the stay-at-home spouse, the stayat-home surviving spouse could sell the $700,000 house which would have been a protected asset. The plan would not work if the stay-at-home spouse predeceased the nursing home spouse. You should always get legal counseling from an attorney in the state that you are going to go into a nursing home. Another option would be to purchase a qualified fixed annuity that would provide an income stream. When the individual in the nursing home passed away the income stream would continue to the beneficiary during their life for the term of the annuity. We do not have space in the column to provide you with all the details of the numerous strategies available. Should you require additional information, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Because each individual’s situation is unique, please speak with your financial advisor with any questions or concerns. Or, you may reach the Retirement Doctor at or 1-800-406-1595. Securities offered through Cambridge Investment Research, Inc., a Broker/Dealer, Member FINRA/SIPC. Investment Advisor Representative, Retirement Doctor, LLC, a Registered Investment Advisor. Cambridge and Retirement Doctor, LLC are not affiliated.

Non-profit news and events for area communities. Please send information by the 20th of the month in order to have it listed in this section. We will print as many listings as space allows. Our usual publication date is within the first week of the month. Send to: Town Crier, Southwoods Magazine, P.O. Box 1106, Southwick, MA 01077, Fax: (413) 569-5325 or email us at RIPPLES FROM CONGAMOND By Jerry Crane

Citizens Restoring Congamond held a very successful golf tournament on Sept 8th at Edgewood Golf Course with an after game party and dinner at Louie B’s Restaurant. Over $1400 was raised for the Congamond Lake Invasive Weed Eradication Fund. Thanks to Jen at Nora’s Restaurant and her crew for sponsoring for this great event. Our lake monitoring program is really taking shape. North Pond resident Mikayla Mucha, a student at Westfield State College, and South Pond resident Jeff Duquette are taking more samples than ever and having these analyzed at Westfield State. The sampling results are being logged into a database and will be very important in determining ongoing water condition and courses of action needed to insure the water quality is maintained at proper levels. If you would like to get involved with this very important program, please contact us. Our Christmas party will take place on Saturday, December 7th at Steve & Betty’s Ayotte’s Badda Bing Club. More info and

tickets will be available at the October meeting. We are looking into having some winter events over the season. Also looking at starting a water ski club next year. These will be discussed at the October meeting. If you have any thoughts please bring them to our attention. The annual winter vacation is now all set. We will be going to the Dominican Republic the first week of March, 2014. It’s an all-inclusive vacation on Bavaro Beach for around $1700 per person. This includes direct air fare from Bradley to the island with all transportation and transfers included and all meals and drinks while there. This one will book up fast…. If interested contact us. And…. The seeds of thought have been planted to make to attempt breaking the Guinness Book of World Records for the longest pontoon boat bridge connecting two states (which we currently own) in 2015. This will mark the 15th anniversary of our winning the title. We will be looking to connect over 100 pontoon boats across middle pond from West Suffield, CT to Southwick MA. It’s going to take a year of preparation and lots of work to pull this off and we will be in need of a strong and active committee beginning next year. Interested??? Citizens Restoring Congamond is a duly recognized 501(c)3 non-profit volunteer organization whose mission is the protection and betterment of the Congamond Lakes. We can be reached at




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annual harvest supper

The Southwick Congregational Church, 488 College Highway is sponsoring their Annual Harvest Supper on Saturday, October 19, 2013 at 6:00 PM. The menu is chicken and gravy, biscuits, mashed potatoes, butternut squash, peas with pearl onions, cranberry sauce and apple crisp. The cost is $11.00 for adults and $5.00 for children 12 and under. For reservations please call the church office 569-6362.

Henrietta’s Thrift Shop

spaghetti supper fundraiser

There will be a Spaghetti Supper Fundraiser for Southwick K-9 Jax on Saturday, October 19, 2013, from 4-7 pm at the Soutwick VFW, 151 Grove Road, Southwick. Donation: Adults $8.00, Children Under 10 years $3.00. There will be a 50/50 raffle. Come meet Southwic K-9 Jax and handler Officer Thomas Krutka at the dinner! *Appearance could be cancelled if there is a police emergency. Donations will help defray additional dayto-day expenses.


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The Southwick Congregational Church, 488 College Highway invites you to visit Henrietta’s Thrift Shop which is open on Wednesdays from 9-1:00 PM, Fridays 9-1:00 PM and Saturdays 9-1:00 PM. The shop has gently used household items for sale at very reasonable prices. They have also added a Craft Corner which has handmade scarves, hats and quilts.

international bazaar

West Suffield Congregational Church will be having their International Bazaar - November 2, 2013 – 9 am until 3 pm Homemade pies, homemade soup and bread, bake sale, white elephant sale, crafts and Servv items for sale! Join us for lunch! West Suffield Congregational Church 1408 Mountain Road PO Box 26 West Suffield, CT 06093 860-668-2271

Esoteric-Sherwood lodge hosts blood drive/open house

On Saturday October 19th, Esoteric-Sherwood Lodge of Ancient Free and Accepted Masons will hold a Mercy Hospital blood drive event in conjunction with an Open House. It will be held at the Feeding Hills Masonic building, 475 Pine Street, Feeding Hills, MA. The public is warmly invited to visit between 9 am and 3 pm. Please contact Frank Larson at 413-205-7290 to schedule a donation appointment.


There will be benefit for Jake Wrenn on Saturday, November 16, 6 - 10 pm at Tekoa Country Club, 459 Russell Rd., Westfield, MA, Casual Dress, Silent Auction, DJ and Fun. Donation $30 per person. Jake Wrenn was riding his bicycle on May 15, 2013 when he went over his handlebars breaking his neck, leaving him a quadriplegic. All monies raised from this event will go towards the purchase of an Action TrackChair for Jake. Event registration options: Online: Enter Jake Wrenn in the “Find a Patient” section on the home page and follow the directions. Credit Cards and e-check accepted. By Mail: Make check payable to the Jake Wrenn Fund. Include the number of people attending and their names. Mail to Marcy Geschwind P.O. Box 7 Granville, MA 01034 Event Organizers Marcy Geschwind 413-530-4259, Pam Koretz 413-563-3774, Hebe Kudisch 860-913-3859

Southwick Cultural Council seeks local grant applications for 2014 The Southwick Cultural Council (SCC) for arts, humanities, and interpretive science, is now accepting grant applications for year 2014. The Council will accept applications from individuals, organizations and schools – deadline for applications is October 15th. The application form can be downloaded from www. or a form can be picked up at the Southwick town Hall (Clerk’s Office) or the Southwick Public Library. According to Chair Susan Kochanski, the grants can support a variety of artistic projects and activities in Southwick including exhibits, festivals, short-term residences or performances in schools, the public library, workshops and lectures. For more information, please contact Susan Kochanski at 413 569 0946.

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P Driveways Plowed P Clean-Outs P Scrap Metal P Junk Car Removal P Rubbish Removal P Odd Jobs CELL: 413-237-7148 October 2013 Since April, unemployment in the Commonwealth has been on the rise. As a result, people have experienced the pitfalls and problems of trying to collect unemployment benefits. I’ve received a number of calls from citizens, who are frustrated with the Commonwealth’s recently revamped benefit system. I want to share a few excerpts of a recent State By State Representative House News story on the subject. Nicholas Boldyga STATE HOUSE, BOSTON, OCT. 2, 2013….An updated computer system at the Department of Unemployment Assistance has caused problems for residents applying for unemployment benefits. While the department has brought on new staff to handle the transition, somewhere between 100 and 300 individuals a week have raised issues that may have been caused by “data conversion,” Secretary of Workforce and Labor Development Joanne Goldstein told the News Service Monday. “Once the system is a little more mature all of these issues will have been addressed,” Goldstein said. She said, “We never stop benefits without telling individuals they’re stopping.” “One claimant with unresolved issues is one too many, which is precisely why we have increased our staff, augmented their training and make every effort to expeditiously and effectively resolve all claims,” Goldstein wrote in a Sept. 26 letter to legislators. The Boston Globe reported contractor Deloitte missed deadlines, charged the state $6 million more than was planned, and the state considered firing the computer contractor. A state official told the News Service the Office of Labor and Workforce Development is holding Deloitte accountable and disputed the Globe’s “published reports” that hundreds of claimants were “cut off” from benefits because of the new computer program. The 100 to 300 experiencing problems per week represent 0.2 percent of the more than 100,000 weekly claims, the official said. “Under our prior system, which was really on its last legs and desperately needed upgrades and replacement, we had issues as well,” Goldstein told the News Service in early September, attributing the problems generally to people “waiting too long on the telephone,” and waiting to receive benefits while their claim is processed. Call wait times increased after the launch, from 35 minutes on average to 45 minutes on average. The Office of Labor and Workforce Development has reported rising unemployment since April when the state’s unemployment rate was 6.4 percent through August when the unemployment rate reached 7.2 percent, just below the national average. Goldstein said the problems have generally cropped up among new applicants, and said conversion troubles impact on the unemployment statistics have been “negligible if at all.” If you have experienced similar issues with the newly revamped unemployment benefit system please contact me. Sincerely,

Nicholas A. Boldyga Representative Please visit my website for more information

Nicholas A. Boldyga is completing his second term as Representative, serving Agawam, Granville and Southwick. He is the Ranking Member on the Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee. PAGE 26




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CLEANING SERVICE AVAILABLE - For every week, every other week or once a month. Serving Southwick and surrounding area for 20 years. References Call Diane DeWinkeleer 413-5693016. traprock driveways built & repaired. Gravel, loam, fill deliveries. Tractor services, equipment moved, York Rake. Bill Armstrong Trucking. 413357-6407. shaw logging & firewood For all your Firewood needs, cutsplit & delivered or Log Truck Loads & 1/2 Log Truck Loads (4cd +) 413-357-8738 baseball cards - Old, Mint Condition. Great gift for kids & grandkids for collecting. 1000 cards $20.00 Call 413-998-3248. KEENKUT LANDSCAPING SPRING CLEANUPS, Landscape Design, Mulch Beds, Plantings, New Lawn Installs, Weekly and Bi-weekly mowing, Bobcat service call 413-896-9240 DELREO HOME IMPROVEMENT for all your exterior home improvement needs ROOFING, SIDING, WINDOWS, DOORS, DECKS & GUTTERS extensive references, fully licensed & insured in MA & CT. Call Gary Delcamp 413-569-3733 CREATIVE CRITTER CUTS: Southwick, MA. Certified by the National Dog Groomers Association of America. Call for appointment 413-569-0391.

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A PRAYER TO THE HOLY SPIRIT Holy Spirit, You who made me see everything and showed me the way to reach my ideal. You, who gave me the divine gift to forgive and forget the wrong that is done to me and you, who are in all instances of my life with me. I, in this short dialogue wan to thank you for everything and confirm once more that I never want to be separated from you no matter how great the material desire may be. I want to be with you and my loved ones in your perpetual glory. Amen. Thank you for your love towards me and my loved ones. Persons must pray the prayer three consecutive days with out asking your wish. After third day wish will be granted no matter how difficult it may be. Then promise to publish this dialogue as soon as this favor is granted. I will never stop trusting in God and His power. F.R.

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Southwoods Magazine A Journal for Country Living  
Southwoods Magazine A Journal for Country Living  

October 2013