Vermont Maturity July-August 2020 Issue

Page 1

July/August 2020 Issue


Maple Ridge Memory Care The Bike Trails of Northern Vermont Knowing Risk Tolerance at Different Stages of Life Is It Still Safe to Eat? Understanding Dates on Labels

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Table of Contents Vermont Maturity

For Vermonters Age 50 and Older

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CONTRIBUTING EDITORS Ben Durant Aaron Glosser Eric Hopper Clover Whitham Joshua Nichols


Cover Story: Maple Ridge Memory Care The Bike Trails of Northern Vermont by Clover Whitham


Char Grass

IT & WEB DESIGN Mark Chaney

ADVERTISING & EDITORIAL INQUIRIES Phone – 802.332.3254 Fax – 563.557.7641 Vermont Maturity is published times per year by RTN Publishing, Inc. and is distributed without charge to qualified subscribers in Vermont. Nonqualified reader subscription costs are $39 per year for United States residents. No international subscriptions are available. Subscription requests must include name, address, phone number and email address. The publisher makes no representation concerning any product or service advertised in this publication. Vermont Maturity and VermontMaturity. com serve only as a medium for sellers to reach potential buyers and does not warrant the accuracy of any advertisement. Vermont Maturity makes every effort to eliminate typographical errors and assumes no responsibility for misspelling names of people from handwritten copy. All editorial items submitted are subject to editing and alteration at the sole discretion of publisher. Design and format of this magazine is protected by the copyright laws of the United States of America. Reproduction of this publication in whole or in part is prohibited without express written consent of the publisher. POSTMASTER: Please send address changes to Vermont Maturity, 6170 Forest Hills Drive, Asbury, IA 52002-9349.

The Bike Trails of Northern Vermont by Clover Whitham

The Secret is Out and People are Moving to Vermont


Knowing Risk Tolerance at Different Stages of Life by Aaron Glosser

by Ben Durant


An Indoor Scavenger Hunt for Your Estate


Is It Still Safe to Eat? Understanding Dates on Labels

Why You Need an Advance Directive by Jim Miller

By Brigitte Harton, RD, CD, NBC-HWC




4  |  July/August 2020 |



rds. . . . . . . a C s s e in Bus

. 29



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Maple Ridge Memory Care


amilies with a loved one suffering from

Maple Ridge Memory Care is located in beautiful

memory impairment know the challenges

Essex Junction in the heart of northwestern Vermont.

faced when choosing a facility that can provide

Maple Ridge is a 50-room senior living community

adequate care. Finding the right care facility

that is exclusively dedicated to seniors with Alzheimer’s

is an important and difficult decision. Memory care

disease and other forms of dementia. Maple Ridge

is a distinct form of long-term care designed to meet

Memory Care consists of two neighborhoods; each is

the specific needs of a person with Alzheimer’s disease,

comprised of private and companion suites with private

dementia, or other types of memory issues. When it

bathrooms. There are cozy sunlit common areas, a town

comes to choosing the right memory care community

center for gatherings, and multiple secure courtyards

for a loved one, a careful examination of the services

for enjoying Vermont’s outdoor sights and sounds.

provided will help determine which facility is the best fit.

The property is adjacent to the Essex Resort and Spa

Memory care communities offer a wide range of services.

and residents and associates are invited to walk freely

At Maple Ridge Memory Care, residents not only receive


all the additional help they need, but also are allowed and encouraged to live as independently as possible. 6 | July/August 2020 |

The entire leadership team at Maple Ridge Memory Care is trained as Dementia Certified Practitioners. The

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team’s mission is simple: to provide a home-like setting

a mindful, non-pharmacological approach, which is

where residents truly thrive, despite the limitations of

based on research and best practice. This unique, holistic

their memory loss. This mission is accomplished with

program of nurturing care is offered to every resident. A

the implementation of a program called AspireCare.

custom designed rhythm for each resident’s day includes

AspireCare Maple Ridge Memory Care’s AspireCare is both a lifestyle and a therapy program. AspireCare embraces

Something To Think About James A Meunier, director

ENCOURAGEMENT FOR THE BEREAVED What can you do to help a grief-stricken and bereaved friend return to a fairly normal and happy life? First of all, you must respect your friend’s need to grieve. That’s right, the process of grief can be very important for healing, for coming to terms with one’s loss. Also, there is no set time-period for such feelings, though social customs may designate arbitrary periods of mourning. Eventually, tactfully, you might encourage your friend to get involved in

new activities and meet new people. He or she may be very reluctant at first, but developing new interests is crucial to recovery. Don’t be forceful, but do be persistent and make a real effort to find something your friend could truly enjoy. Be available but don’t be overbearing in your desire to help. Ultimately, it is up to your friend. He or she will accept as much help as possible without surrendering dignity or integrity.


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all of the research-proven components of good care for those with Alzheimer’s and related dementias. Each resident’s custom designed “rhythm of the day” includes all of the research-proven components of good care. The staff at Maple Ridge Memory Care is highly trainend in techniques specific to Alzheimer’s and related disorders and they also receive specific AspireCare training. The AspireCare training for Maple Ridge’s direct care staff far exceeds Vermont’s requirements and is the cornerstone of their care. Maple Ridge Memory Care also partners with community experts and specialists from various healthcare fields to maintain exceptional holistic care for the residents. AspireCare provides a wide range of professional services and amenities, such as a licensed dementia trained staff and Registered Nurse leadership. In addition, AspireCare provides specialty services, including individualized diets, podiatry services, transportation to appointments, pet therapy, community education, support groups, and a lively activities calendar. Maple Ridge Memory Care’s activities program takes advantage of what the residents can do, providing a balance of physical and cognitive engagement with an abundance of fun.



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Dining Service Maple Ridge Memory Care’s staff understands that, along with appropriate activity and good health care, diet is vital to maintaining health, particularly for those with memory loss. Maple Ridge’s compassionate dining program is a significant component of AspireCare. It

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stimulates the appetite with an appropriate dining room atmosphere and provides choices for those with limited dining ability. Most importantly, the food at Maple Ridge is homemade, not preprocessed, and has a combination of fresh, Vermont-sourced vegetables, whole grains, and proteins to provide a balance of enjoyment and health.

Communication Training A cornerstone for success at any memory care facility is communication. In the case of seniors who are losing their ability to process information, how something is said is very important. The communications training at Maple Ridge Memory Care is extensive, unique, and deeply meaningful to both the residents and staff. Myron Sopher, Managing Partner Brett Peltzer, CFA, Partner Matthew Johnson, CFA, Partner South Burlington & Norwich, Vt. Office: 802-658-0625 Toll-free: 888-394-0625

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What truly sets Maple Ridge Memory Care apart is the people. Associates, staff, residents, and the residents’ families are all on the same journey and are very much a family. Like any other family, they turn to each other for

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guidance, compassion, love, and laughter. Our families are essential to how we make decisions in our care, and our associates pull it all together with consistency and transparency. Maple Ridge’s residents feel warmth, compassion, love, and a sense of togetherness which helps bring a smile every day. Memory loss does not take a vacation, nor does it lessen during a pandemic. For people with loved ones suffering from a memory related illness, finding a memory care facility that not only provides the necessary medical care, but also a stimulating environment is of the utmost importance. Families must look beyond the websites and brochures and dive deep into how residents are cared for, families are treated, pricing is disclosed, and decisions are made. Maple Ridge Memory Care is transparent and straightforward; not only with pricing, but with programs, policies, and procedures. All in all, it is AspireCare’s allencompassing approach to providing top-notch care that allows Maple Ridge Memory Care’s residents to continue

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The Bike Trails of Northern Vermont


by Clover Whitham

rom country highways to winding paths in the

and slowly enough to enjoy your surroundings, and

woods, Vermont offers just about every type of

enough physical activity to keep you healthy, mentally

bicycling. Throw in a causeway trail that might

and physically healthy.

even remind you of biking along the ocean

and there’s little more you can ask for. This summer is a great time to hop back on two wheels and enjoy the

outdoors while keeping yourself and others healthy. Bicycling is also a great way to discover a new part of the state or experience familiar places in a new way. “It allows you to see things that you normally wouldn’t see from a car, and it also allows you to cover more ground than walking,” said Tom Clark, a cycling advocate. “It allows you to move through life efficiently

“It’s just a great combination of many things.” Here’s a quick look at some of the bicycling options in Vermont.

Rail Trails and Bike Paths Vermont has several rail trails and dozens of recreation paths ideal for bicycling. The most famous is likely the Island Line trail, which runs 14 miles from Burlington to Colchester and out on a causeway into the middle of Lake Champlain. In the summer, a bike ferry takes riders and pedestrians across a gap in the causeway to a trail that then leads to the Champlain Islands. For a longer adventure riders can find a meal, ice cream or even visit a winery on the islands. Local Motion, a nonprofit that advocates for safe


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and accessible biking and walking throughout Vermont, operates the Island Line Bike Ferry. Local Motion also rents bicycles from its Trailside Center in Burlington. In a typical year, between 11,000 and 12,000 people visit Local Motion’s Trailside Center along the Burlington Bike Path, according to Tom Clark, director of Local Motion services and marketing. The Burlington Bike Path and Island Line Trail are a major part of the draw. There are many other car-free routes to take in the state. Other rail trails include the Missisquoi Valley Rail

Phone number: 802.355.6688

Trail, the Lamoille Valley Rail Trail, and the D&H Rail


as a train-themed playground and covered bridges, or


14 | July/August 2020 |

Trail. All of the rail trails have unique attractions, such provide easy access to local eateries, breweries and ice cream.

Yva & Jim Rose are the owners of Lamoille Valley Bike Tours

Many towns have recreation paths that also welcome

well. Brassard extolled the virtue of electric bicycles in

cyclists. South Burlington, for example, has a 21-mile

allowing riders of different abilities to ride the same

paved path. Stowe has a 5.3 mile paved path.

routes together.

Road Biking For those comfortable bicycling on roads, there are endless scenic loops. Tom Brassard, 64, has been an avid cyclist for about 40 years. He recommends a loop

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in Addison County in part because the valley near Lake Champlain offers less hilly terrain. One of his favorite rides is a loop from Vergennes to Middleburry and back. Both towns have great restaurants at which to enjoy a pit stop or celebrate your finish. For road biking with less traffic, seek out dirt roads, Brassard suggests. Almost every Vermont town has some. “I can’t think of a better way to experience a place

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than on a bike. You’re really immersed in where you are,” Brassard said.

E-biking, the Great Equalizer As Brassard put it, the two biggest hindrances

Offices in Burlington & Essex Junction Jeffrey J. Wick, Esq. CELL: 917.282.5256

to bicycling are often traffic and hills. Electric bikes can help with the latter, and have other benefits as Vermont Maturity | July/August 2020 | 15

Yva Rose and her husband, Jim Rose, operate Lamoille Valley Bike Tours. They rent and sell class I pedal assist e-bikes and give tours on and around the Lamoille Valley Rail Trail. Riders using that type of bicycle need to pedal to activate an electronic motor that gives the rider a boost. Other classes of e-bikes operate with a throttle that turns the wheels for the rider. “E-biking is revolutionizing bicycling, especially for seniors,” Brassard said. Electric bikes can be great fun for any rider, agreed

“E-bikes open up biking to many more people regardless of their fitness level and allows for people to bike farther faster and with less

Yva Rose. They’re perfect for anyone worried about

energy than a regular bicycle (great commuter vehicles!)”

cycling fitness or an existing injury. Advanced cyclists

said Yva Rose.

will find e-bikes allow them to enjoy longer routes.

E-bikes can be a great equalizer. “E-Biking brings friends and family together for an activity that everyone can participate in. We once had four generations take part in one of our tours together,” said Yva Rose.

Mountain Biking Just as there are many road biking opportunities, mountain biking options are plentiful in Vermont. Off-road options include narrow trails cut through the woods, wider trails used for snowmobiling or cross country skiing in the winter, downhill trails accessed from a ski lift, and even bike parks. According to the Vermont Mountain Bike Association, local chapters maintain more than 1,000 miles of trails. The association has tools on its website to plan trips and to check trail conditions. Many ski areas in Vermont turn into mountain biking meccas in the summer. Many Alpine and cross country ski areas around the state offer rentals, tours and host events.

16 | July/August 2020 |

Tours There are businesses that offer both guided and unguided bicycling tours throughout Vermont. Some are standalone tour companies; others are associated with bike rental operations or trail networks. In an unguided tour, riders are provided route and attraction information they can use to plan their trip. For someone new to or newly returning to bicycling, a guided tour could be a good introduction to both the sport and a location. “On any tour you may get people who are nervous for whatever reason. A good tour leader will allay that,” Brassard, who has guided tours before, said.

The Right Bike is Important Brassard cautions against saddling up on ill-fitting bicycles. “It’s really important to buy the right bike that fits. People can easily get hurt on a bike that doesn’t fit right,”

Suggested Vendor Lamoille Valley Bike Tours offers electric bike rentals, tours, and sales on the scenic car-free Lamoille Valley Rail Trail and beyond. The rail trail travels in and out of four quaint Vermont villages and spans miles of working farm landscape, sweeping fields of flowers, beautiful wild river plain, and breathtaking mountainous scenery. LVBT’s pedal-assist electric bikes make the ride smooth and easy enough to breeze down the trail with plenty of energy to explore the villages, shops, restaurants and breweries on and around the rail trail, take a dip or fish in a local swimming hole or picnic in any of the picturesque locations right on the trail. Their tours include an Ebike and Brew Tour, a Pedal Paddle Tour, a Teahouse Tour, and Summer Adventure and Foliage Adventure Tours for all ages. For those looking to celebrate they offer custom group tours and private events. Book your ebike adventure now!

Lamoille Valley Bike Tours Old Mill Park 661 Railroad Street Johnson VT 05656 P – 802-730-0161

Vermont Maturity | July/August 2020 | 17

Brassard warns. Besides fit, it’s important to use a bicycle

distancing while riding that include leaving two bike

that’s right for the terrain. The wrong tires could lead to

lengths between riders, observing trail directions, “ride

more falls, which could mean damage to both the bike

and go”- meaning no congregating in parking lots, and

and the rider.

riding terrain well within your ability. The association

A Word About COVID-19 and Social Distancing To keep yourself and others safe trail etiquette is more important than ever, according to the Vermont

also suggests packing a mask and gloves in case interaction or helping another biker is necessary. Bike rental and tour businesses are preparing for summer operations with new procedures that may include increased equipment cleaning and online payments. Local Motion, for example, will for the first

Mountain Biking Association. On its website the organization offers guidelines for maintaining social Family Owned and Operated Since 1951

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time be taking reservations for bicycles online and by telephone. Check with local trail and cycling associations before embarking for the most current guidelines and trail information. VM

Resources Local Motion trail finder, suggested routes, bike ferry and rental information:, 802-8612700 For an overview of popular routes and a downloadable Vermont bike path map visit: biking/paths-and-rail-trails Lamoille Valley Bike Tours, Lamoillevalleybiketours. com, 802-730-0161, Lamoille Valley Rail Trail: Missisquoi Valley Rail Trail: D&H Rail Trail:

Cross Vermont Trail: Vermont Mountain Bike Association: Tips for outdoor recreation to avoid Covid-19: Fpr. : Clover Whitham has been a journalist at Vermont newspapers for more than a dozen years and is now a freelance writer and editor near Burlington.

Photos provided by Lamoille Valley Bike Tours

Vermont Maturity | July/August 2020 | 19

Knowing Risk Tolerance at Different Stages of Life by Aaron Glosser

When You Are First Staring Out

As an investor, you’ll always need to deal with risk of some kind. But how can you manage the risk that’s been made clear by the recent volatility in the financial

If you’re early in your career, with perhaps four or

markets? The answer to this question may depend on

even five decades to go until you retire; you can likely

where you are in life.

afford to invest primarily for growth, which also means

Let’s look at some different life stages and how you might deal with risk at each of them:

you’ll be taking on a higher level of risk, as risk and reward are positively correlated. But, given your age, you have time to overcome the market downturns that are both inevitable and a normal part of investing. Consequently, your risk tolerance may be relatively high. Still, even at this stage, being over-aggressive can be costly.

When You Are in the Middle Stages At this time of your life, you’re well along in your Aaron Glosser, CFP®


Financial Advisor

336 Watertower Cir Ste 102 Colchester, VT 05446-5927 802-655-5512

20 | July/August 2020 |

career, and you’re probably

Member SIPC

working on at least a couple of financial goals, such as saving for retirement and possibly for

your children’s college education.

can further reduce the future risk of

So, you still need to be investing for

being overly dependent on selling

growth, which means you’ll likely

variable investments by devoting a

need to maintain a relatively high

certain percentage of your portfolio

risk tolerance. Nonetheless, it’s a

to cash and cash equivalents and

good idea to have some balance

designating this portion to be used

in your portfolio, so you’ll want to

for your daily expenses during

consider a mix of investments that

the years immediately preceding,

align with each of your goals.

and possibly spilling into, your



When You Are a Few Years From Retirement

When You Are Retired Once you’re retired, you might

Now, you might have already

think you should take no risks at

achieved some key goals – perhaps

all. But you could spend two or

your kids have finished college and

three decades in retirement, so you

you’ve paid off your mortgage. This

may need some growth potential

may mean you have more money

in your portfolio to stay ahead of

available to put away for retirement, but you’ll still have to think carefully about how much risk you’re willing

inflation. Establishing a withdrawal rate – the amount you take out each year from your investments – that’s

to take. Since you’re going to

appropriate for your lifestyle and

retire soon, you might consider rebalancing your portfolio to include

projected longevity can reduce the

some more conservative investments, risk of outliving your money. Of course, if there’s an extended market whose value is less susceptible to financial market fluctuations. The reason? In just a few years, when you’re retired, you will need to start taking withdrawals from your investment portfolio – essentially, you’ll be selling investments, so, as much as possible, you’ll want to avoid selling them when their price is down. Nonetheless, having a balanced and diversified portfolio doesn’t fully protect against a loss. However, you

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downturn during any time of your

retirement, you may want to lower your withdrawal rate temporarily.

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As you can see, your tolerance for risk, and your methods of dealing with it, can change over time. By being aware of this progression, you can make betterinformed investment decisions.VM Aaron Glosser is a certified financial planner for Edward Jones. He can be contacted at 802.655.5512 or Aaron.Glosser@edwardjones. com. His office is on Water Circle in Colchester.

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864-5951 Vermont Maturity | July/August 2020 | 21

Is It Still Safe to Eat? Understanding Dates on Labels By Brigitte Harton, RD, CD, NBC-HWC

If you were overtaken by the food-buying mania of the early days of COVID-19, you may have a pantry or refrigerator or freezer full of packaged food. If you look at the products’ date to guide whether you should use

That’s like throwing away every third bag of groceries purchased in the United States!


them for your next meal, you may have found yourself scratching your head.

Because product dating is not required by the Federal Government (except for infant formula), a multitude

If you’re confused about date labels, you’re not

of terms and dates were used by manufacturers to help

alone. With terms such as “best by,” “use before,” “sell

consumers and retailers decide when food was of the best

by,” “best if used by,” it’s no wonder American consumers

quality (i.e. the date to which they can expect the food

are throwing away perfectly good food! Consumer

to retain its desired quality and flavor). Hence comes the

confusion about the meaning of the dates that appear on

confusion: the dates were a quality indicator, not a safety

food packages is believed to contribute to about 20% of


food waste in the home. Between the food industry and consumers, Americans are throwing out about a third

Thankfully, the food industry has come up with a more standardized term to hopefully help clear up the

of their food which is about $161 billion worth each year.

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Check us out on

date labeling confusion. The term “Best if Used By” is now

dented (as long as the dent is not at the seam), it’s probably

accepted and has been shown to best convey to consumers

fine to eat.

that the products do not have to be thrown away after the

Mainly, trust your senses to determine if the food is safe to eat. If the products have changed noticeably in

date if they are stored properly. According to the USDA, here are some commonly

color, consistency, or texture, you may want to discard them. Also, check out these resources to help you keep

used wordings you may see on food packages: “Best if Used By/Before” date indicates when a product will be of best flavor or quality. It is not a purchase or

your food safe: The FoodKeeper App ( foodkeeperapp/index.html), designed to promote

safety date. “Sell-By” date tells the store how long to display the product for sale for inventory management. It is not a

understanding of food and beverage storage to maximize freshness and quality. The Refrigerator and Freezer Storage Chart on page 4

safety date. “Use-By” date is the last date recommended for the use

of the FDA’s Food Facts brochure (

of the product while at peak quality. It is not a safety date

download), providing more information about which

except for when used on infant formula.

products to refrigerate or freeze, and for how long.

“Freeze-By” date indicates when a product should be

If you have more questions about date labeling or food

frozen to maintain peak quality. It is not a purchase or

safety, please reach out to the Age Well’s Helpline at 800-

safety date.

642-5119 and request a consultation with the dietitian. Remember that at any time, food is too important to


waste and this is especially true now. VM

To ensure your food will stay at its best quality and safety, it’s important to properly store it. Make sure you put away your groceries shortly after you get home. If your perishable items are left on the counter for a while, they

Brigitte Harton is a consultant registered dietitian at the non-profit Age Well and a Board Certified Wellness Coach. You can reach her at . For more information about the services Age Well provide such as community meals and Meals on Wheel, call the Helpline at 800-642-5119 or visit

are exposed to higher temperatures that may degrade them and encourage harmful microorganism growth that can spoil them. Refrigeration or freezing is what keeps these microorganisms

Holly Lemieux Attorney at Law

dormant therefore proper storing is crucial to maintain food safety. As for non-perishable, most of them will stay perfectly safe to eat if stored in a dry, temperaturecontrolled pantry. Canned foods for example can stay good almost indefinitely as long as the integrity of the seam is not compromised and it’s not rusted or bulging. Even if it’s

Elder Law • Special Needs Planning Wills • Trusts • Estates • Probate Matters 21 Carmichael St., Suite 201 • Essex Junction, VT 05452 | | 802-871-5410 Vermont Maturity | July/August 2020 | 23

The Secret is Out and People are Moving to Vermont by Ben Durant

For generations, the migration pattern of humanity

mountains remained green, and Lake Champlain still

shows the flow of people from rural to urban areas.

lapped at its shaley shores. The cows barely noticed

People always left for opportunities; to get ahead, to

a change. Vermont didn’t grow like our northeast

make a life for themselves. First they left for easier

neighbors but we did evolve. With limited and slow

living by finding jobs in the factories of the industrial

growth, we preserved our rural and agrarian heritage.

revolution - an actual wage and just a 6 day work

We cleaned up and polished our industrial areas

week. No farms ever had a six day work week. After

such as the Burlington Waterfront. Vermont has

the industrial revolution, people left rural areas for

come of age with strong local food movement and an

corporate jobs in the big cities, and more recently

appreciation of local artists. We have a very high rate of

they left for jobs in the tech sectors. Cites grew into

entrepreneurship and we are known as a great place to

boomtowns and their densities exploded.

start and grow a business. We developed unparalleled

All the while Vermont stayed largely the same,

access to nature through trails and parks. More lately,

except for some barely noticeable high tech fiber

Vermont has done a good job in building a high tech

optic cable hanging on the old grey power poles. The

infrastructure, so even many of the most remote

farmer still plowed the fields, the rivers still flowed, the

towns have access to a high speed internet. All of these

Make Our Home, Your Home.

elements make our Vermont home a very good place to live. Beyond the tangible, Vermont seems to value what is authentic and truly good in an almost intangible way. It took some time for the secret to get out but somewhere along the way, people began to realize what they were missing and began to migrate back to Vermont. This inflow of people was evident in 2018, when CNBC reported that on balance, Vermont was the most popular state to move to and the data shows that the trend has continued through 2020. As we all now know, the first half of 2020 has been a

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calamity with the worst Pandemic since 1918. COVID 19 seemed to unfairly target densely populated urban areas and made living in large cities downright dangerous. This was followed by massive social unrest that has made Vermont an agrarian mecca and even more attractive to those stuck in the city. Moreover, the pandemic also forced most workers to leave their densely packed corporate offices to the new normal of working from

It took some time for the secret to get out but somewhere along the way, people began to realize what they were missing

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home. Many companies declared that employees would be not only allowed to work from home, but expected to work from home, indefinitely. That has many asking, if I could live anywhere in the world… where would that be? Clearly for many that answer is Vermont. As I write this, there are many, silently, packing up their stuff, and they are coming to make a better life here. My office has been inundated with calls as to how to help people find a home here in Vermont. My answer has always been, after two weeks of quarantine, I’m happy to help them find their slice of heaven or they can buy sight unseen in the meantime. To my shock, I have sold properties, sight unseen, this year which I admit was an unfathomable concept until now. So is all of this good for our Vermont? I believe it is. As mentioned above, Vermont is very good at maintaining our state, our built & natural environment, and our core values. Adding people to our mix won’t change who we are. It’s also very good that the people are moving here by choice, because they consider our state to be their ideal home too. We have shared values with the newcomers who will make us even more vibrant and enhance our culture through diversity of people and ideas. So if you see a flatlander move into the neighborhood, be sure to welcome them home. And overall, be thankful, because your property value likely

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just went up. VM Ben Durant is a Senior Real Estate Specialist® and Owner of Transitions Real Estate. He is dedicated to helping Vermont Seniors and Boomers find their best housing solutions. Ben lives with his wife and three children in Williston. He can be contacted by visiting Transitionsvt. com or by calling 802-355-6688.

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Vermont Maturity | July/August 2020 | 25

An Indoor Scavenger Hunt for Your Estate expected or what some of us think we can tolerate. The

There’s no debating that we are living through unprecedented and challenging times right now. While

binge-watching, the banana bread baking, the macaroni

many are combating this pandemic on the front lines,

necklace crafting, the mask-sewing, the spring cleaning,

many more of us are following the “stay home, stay

closet organizing, and the list goes on. Have you run out

safer” model prescribed by our leaders. And staying

of ways to spend your time at home?

home may be on our agenda for longer than originally

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Here’s another suggestion: indoor scavenger hunt— estate edition. How quickly can you locate your estate

Maybe you have plenty of ways to spend your extra “at-home” time during this crisis. But if you need another

plan and related documents? Your search list may include

activity, this “estate” scavenger hunt will not only provide

a trust, will, durable power of attorney, medical directive,

you some peace of mind but your loved ones as well. VM

deeds, and life insurance policies. Extra credit items include an asset inventory and password list. Ready, set, go! If it took you a while to locate these items, perhaps

This article was provided by Jarrett & Luitjens Estate & Elder Law. For more information

you need to improve your storage systems. A fire-proof safe at home is a great option, but the key to storage is notifying a trusted individual as to the whereabouts of those documents. To pass a bit more time, before you re-file and properly store these documents, you could take a peek at them. While documents that you signed years ago do not become invalid or stale merely due to the passage of time, they can become inconsistent with current wishes. Confirm that the provisions still reflect your goals about the distribution of your assets and who is in charge of

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certain decisions. For example, the brother you named as Executor fifteen years ago may no longer be appropriate now that your children are responsible adults. You should also review your deeds, bank accounts, investment accounts, and other assets to confirm ownership (individual, joint, with beneficiaries, in trust, etc.) to ensure consistency with your overall plan. Maybe you purchased a life insurance policy in 1965, naming


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Why You Need an Advance Directive by Jim Miller

Creating a living will (also known as an advance

It isn’t necessary to hire a lawyer to prepare an

directive) is one of those things most people plan to do,

advance directive. There are free or low-cost resources

but rarely get around to actually doing. Only about one-

available today to help you create one, and it takes only a

third of Americans currently have one. Here’s what you

few minutes from start to finish.

should know along with some resources to help you create an advance directive.

Advance Directives To adequately spell out your wishes regarding your end-of-life medical treatment are two key documents: A “living will” which tells your doctor what kind of care you want to receive if you become incapacitated, and a “health care power of attorney” (or health care proxy), which names a person you authorize to make medical decisions on your behalf if you become unable to. These two documents are known as an “advance directive,” and will only be utilized if you are too ill to make medical decisions yourself. You can also change or update it whenever you please.

One that I highly recommend that’s completely free to use is My Directives ( This is an online tool and mobile app that will help you create, store and share a detailed, customized digital advance directive. Their easy-to-use platform combines eight thoughtful questions to guide you through the process. If you’re not computer savvy, ask a family member or trusted friend to help you. The advantage of having a digital advance directive versus a paper document is being able to access it quickly and easily via smartphone, which is crucial in emergency situations when they’re most often needed. If, however, you’d rather have a paper document, one of the best do-it-yourself options is the Five Wishes advance directive (they offer online forms too). Created by Aging with Dignity, a nonprofit advocacy organization, Five Wishes costs $5, and is available in many languages. To learn more or to receive a copy, visit or call 850-681-2010. Another tool you should know about that will compliment your advance directive is the Physician

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Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment, or POLST (sometimes called Medical Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment, or MOLST). A POLST form translates your end-of-life wishes into medical orders to be honored by your doctors. To learn more about your state’s program or set one up, see

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If you’ve already prepared an advanced directive

them electronically to everyone involved. Or, if you

paper document, a POLST form or the VA advance

make a paper advance directive that isn’t uploaded, you

directive form 10-0137, you can upload, store and share

should provide everyone copies to help prevent stress and

these documents too at

arguments later. VM

And finally, to ensure your final wishes are followed, make sure to tell your family members, health care proxy and doctors. If you make a digital advance directive or

Jim Miller publishes the Savvy Senior, a nationally syndicated column that offers advice for Boomers and Seniors.

have uploaded your existing forms, you can easily share Vermont Maturity | July/August 2020 | 29

Free Subscription to Vermont Maturity Vermont Maturity is mailed free of charge to qualified recipients age 50 and older in the Chittenden County area. Vermont Maturity offers a wide range of local and regional coverage on topics important to boomers and seniors, including local stories and news plus articles on finance, travel, fashion & beauty, business, caring for aging parents, grandparenting, careers, health & fitness, food, and things to do.

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Standing! By Gary Richter


here it is, I’ve said it, “The S-Word.’ Standing. As benign and innocent as we may think this (in)activity is; it’s a killer. Well, overstating it a bit, but there are those who tell us they wished they died, rather than tolerate lower back pain, leg fatigue and other maladies, ultimately due

to standing. Just ask your friend or neighbor working in manufacturing at GlobalFoundaries, an operating room nurse, anyone working retail, your mechanic, or your child’s teacher. They’ll tell you what podiatrists, physiotherapists, anatomy and physiology textbooks have known forever – humans were not designed to stand. The root of this evil, from an engineering perspective, is that our primary support structure (spine) is not centered up the middle of ie gg ved! u A pro Ap

our bodies. Combine that, with the disproportionately dense weight up high on top of our necks (head), also not centered. Our back, backside, shoulders, hamstrings (back upper legs) are all constantly under tension, are tense, working to keep us from falling forward. What happens if we totally give in to Newton? That is, let gravity take affect? We fall forward. If we’re smart enough to throw our leg out, it’s called walking. Ah, now we’re talking. During that activity, reasonably healthy human feet have built in mechanisms that help us maintain our valuable arches within our feet, balance, absorb shock and propel this off kilter organism. But we must be walking or running to activate these mechanisms. When we stand, they are totally ineffective. So what’s the solution? Unquestionably, the most important defense is muscle balance and stretching. Complimenting this, and something many of us find easier to be disciplined about, is wearing solid footwear, with upgraded footbeds to take over when

our intrinsic mechanisms are inactive. Upgrade footbeds take the form of 100% custom orthotics for $250-$800, worth every penny, or semi-custom solid over the counter ones for $40-$120. All must be firm and robust enough to support a human in gravity. The short list of reputable brands are available from your podiatrist or a quality, specialty footwear retailer.

Gary Richter is a manager of New Balance Williston in Maple Tree Place. Gary has a B.Sc. in Kinesiology. His colleague Sara LaBarre is a board certified pedorthist, practicing locally for 12 years. Sara works with local health professionals, transforming their footwear and orthotics to maximize their mobility. Between the two, they have 55 years of experience at all levels of the industry.

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