Simply Seniors Winter 2024

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SENIORS ProMedica Coldwater Regional Hospital

ProMedica Total Rehab

OH MY! 50th Christmas Together

MONEY 11 Money Tips For Seniors

RECIPES Easy One Dish Recipes!


Simply Seniors -WINTER 2024 | 1

For family peace of mind. 2 | WINTER 2024 - Simply Seniors

Primary Care Clinics Emergency Room Outpatient Services Specialty Surgeons & Physicians

from the publisher Boy has time flown by. By the time you read this we’ll be in the middle of the holiday season and quickly heading toward the new year. In this issue you’ll find safe travel tips, great money saving tips and let’s not forget the importance of fitness for seniors. Marlanea McGraw Owner/Publisher

You'll find easy one dish recipes to get you through the busy season. We also have our usual puzzles as well as a hidden object in this issue! Thank you for continuing to read the magazine and for the feedback you give. You’re why we do this! I know I say a lot about reading the ads and patronizing our advertisers, but that’s because we quite literally couldn’t continue to publish without their financial support. Small communities like ours only thrive when everyone pulls together and utilizing local resources is a big part of that. Until next time,

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SENIORS Simply Seniors is published by and is the property of



PHOTOGRAPHY Synergy In Motion Studios

For information on how to submit story ideas, concerns, or information on how to advertise, please contact Marlanea McGraw 517-320-9235 •

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Elyse Apel Lori Miller Laura Loveberry Willie Smith Shar Ann Smith Deb Petticrew

Simply Seniors Magazine makes every effort to provide accurate information in advertising and editorial content, however, does not make any claims as to accuracy of information provided by advertisers or editorial contributors and accepts no responsibility or liability for inaccurate information.

Simply Seniors - WINTER 2024 | 3

Table of

Contents 8 28 10 30 14 33 16 34 18 40 20 46 22 26

Cover Feature

ProMedica Total Rehab

Legal News

Power of Attorney Now or Guardian Later?

Perfect Pine Tree By Debbi Petticrew

Flip Flop Forward

By Laura Loveberry

Oh My!

Christmas Trees

Senior Moments

By Willie Smith

Vintage Christmas Safe Travel Tips

4 | WINTER 2024 - Simply Seniors

11 Money Tips BRONSON



Getting Started

Lenawee Senior Centers


’s O



Lasagna Shepards Pie Pumpkin Dump Cake JONESVILLE

Puzzle Fun!

Trivia Word Scramble Suduko Word Search

In 1953...

Find this issues hidden object...


Karim HealthCare Growing to serve our communities!

STURGIS • 269-832-8911 Affordability Availability Quality

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Medicare Annual Wellness Visits

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CEMENT CITY 517-547-4845




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Without their continued commitment & support, this publication would not be possible. AAA Insurance - 13 Belson Asphalt - 15 British Tea Garden - 32 Brown & Sons Roofing - 48 Cambrian Senior Living & Memory Care - 32 Cavonis - 47 Coldwell Banker Groves Real Estate James & Marlanea - 25 Drews Place - 45 Eagle Funeral Homes - 21 El Cerrito Mexican Restaurant - 13 Fackler Monument - 17 Frickers - 13 Gene's Auto Service, LLC - 32

Green Energy LP - 32 Hillsdale Hospital - 2 Hospice of Hillsdale - 21 Hospice of Lenawee - 13 Karim HealthCare - 5 Lenawee Dept on Aging - 33 Lenawee Medical Care Facility - 21 Lorrie Miller, Attorney at Law - 11 Martin’s Home Center -32 Perennial Park - 32 Professional Hearing - 24 Ryan & Bradshaw - 17 State Farm - 17 Tecumseh Place - 7 Veteran's Services - 12

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ProMedica Total Rehab By Elyse Apel

ProMedica Total Rehab, located in Coldwater, Michigan at ProMedica Coldwater Regional Hospital, offers comprehensive physical therapy and rehabilitation services for patients of all ages and conditions. Below are short features on different Total Rehab team members and their specialties. To learn more information about the services ProMedica offers or to set up an appointment, please call (517) 279-5457.

Linda White Clements Speech-Language Pathologist Linda graduated from Marshall University in 1978 with a master’s degree in speech pathology. “I hold a Certificate of Clinical Competence from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and am licensed in the state of Michigan to practice speech and language pathology,” she says. She hasn’t always lived in Michigan, but moved from Cincinnati, Ohio to Coldwater, Michigan in 2006. 8 | WINTER 2024 - Simply Seniors

Linda says that while speech pathologists have the option to work in many different environments, she has enjoyed the experience of working in a hospital. “I like the pace and challenge of working in the hospital setting,” Linda says. “I work with patients from birth to end of life.” Speech pathologists deal with many different medical issues from speech production, language understanding and expression, voice disorders, stuttering, and more. “Here at Promedica Coldwater, a large portion of my cases involve swallowing disorders resulting from stroke, brain injuries, Parkinson's disease, and cancers,” Linda says. For Linda, the patients always come first.

I love my patients! They teach me as much as I hope I teach them,” she explains. “I strive to provide the right treatment plan for each individual patient, because each patient brings their own experiences to therapy.”

Bridget Barle - Physical Therapist Bridget Barle attained her physical therapist degree from the Saxion University, Enschede, Netherlands. Bridget explains that she feels education is an ongoing process and she’s enjoyed that ProMedica Total Rehab allows for different specialties. “Total Rehab has many areas of expertise; this includes post-surgical rehab, sports rehab, lymphedema, balance and vestibular rehab, fall prevention, women’s health, urinary incontinence and general rehab,” Bridget says. “The team is dynamic and works to provide the best rehab environment and one-onone patient-centered care.” Bridget was motivated to become a physical therapist since she was in the 8th grade. She says that she is always excited to care for her patients and help them get back to their lives. “It is really about getting patients back to living,” she says.

Jennifer Stempien - Occupational Therapy Assistant Before becoming an occupational therapist, Jennifer Stempien had a previous 30-year career in cosmetology and college in massage therapy. “It seems that every career opportunity I was given was a step up to prepare me for the next adventure,” Jennifer says. After suffering an injury and going through physical and occupational therapy, she decided to change careers. “It inspired me to make the changes in my career choices,” she says. “I’ve worked in multiple environments from skilled nursing rehab, school setting, hospital inpatient and outpatient rehab.” Two years ago, she teamed up with a co-worker to further her education and received a certificate in LSVT. “LSVT is a designed program for Parkinson’s disease and other neurological disorders. It’s a specialty program to increase brain and body neuroplasticity (exercise) to assist with coordinated body movements,” Jennifer says.

“We also offer a bi-monthly after-hours support group for anyone that has neurological disorders,” she says. “Occupational therapy is all about life skills and developing ways to make life tasks simpler, so you need to be creative and think out of the box. Assisting patients in their healing process and finding compensatory ways to help them complete life skills to be independent is rewarding for me.”

Jaycie Littley - Physical Therapist Jaycie Littley was drawn to physical therapy after seeing the positive impact it had on her own family. “My dad had a rotator cuff repair and seeing his experience made me interested in learning more. He talked so highly of the profession I decided as a senior in high school to become a physical therapist,” Jaycie explains. “I was always interested in anatomy and the human body is such a complex and fascinating area to study.” Jaycie works as an inpatient therapist. “The other half of my time I spend in outpatient, where I specialize in pelvic health physical therapy, vestibularrehabilitation, and the LSVT program for Parkinson’s disease,” she says. Jaycie works with Jennifer on the LSVT program. “We provide a fall prevention program for people before they fall or if they are at risk of falling again called the STEADI program,” Jaycie says. “This program addresses home modifications, medications that might cause increased risk of fall, the impact of Vitamin D on falls, the importance of exercise to decrease fall risk, and how to build strength and exercise to maintain strength and address impairments, and how vision and foot care is important to prevent falls.” She, like Jennifer, helps to run the neurological disorder support group. “Both the patients and their caregivers benefit from this group to learn more about Parkinson’s disease, as well as to have support as they navigate different obstacles,” she says. “I love getting to know what motivates individuals and finding a way to help them reach their goals.”

Since then, Jennifer has begun utilizing her specialty at ProMedica Total Rehab. Simply Seniors -WINTER 2024 | 9

Power of Attorney Now or Guardian Later?


Lorrie A.S. Miller Attorney at Law Lorrie Miller Law, PLC 517.278.2505

ften, when we think of a guardian, we think of children. Of course, guardianship for children is an important thing for parents to consider and it has many variables, but adults may need a guardian for many reasons, as well. Parents of minor children often consider estate planning with the main goal of naming a guardian for their minor children should the parents be incapacitated or even deceased. This decision can be paralyzing for some, on the other hand, and may delay the estate planning process as they do not know who to name. Mom and Dad need to consider several factors: the beliefs/parenting style of the potential guardians, the age/ability of the nominated guardians, location and schools/activities, ability to travel, willingness to include both extended families, the children’s relationship with the potential guardians and sometimes, the housing situation or guardian’s own family situation. These issues have numerous factors involved, including a successor guardian if the initial person(s) is not available, and warrant much thought. Another temporary expansion of

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authority parents might use is a power of attorney during brief periods of the parent’s absence/incapacity while the minor is with another adult. For example, if mom and dad go on an anniversary trip and leave Junior with Grandparents, it is important to leave a power of attorney for medical care so Grandparents can tend to any emergency (Or nonemergency if desired) medical issues for Junior. These powers of attorney can be valid for up to six months. Likewise, adults may find need of a guardianship. If no patient advocate (or medical power of attorney--MPOA) has been named in a valid, legal document, an incapacitated adult may find him/ herself in need of a court appointed guardian. For example, if dad is hospitalized with a serious but suddenly becomes delusional due to an infection/ fever, the hospital may need to consult his named patient advocate for authority to perform emergency surgery to remove the infection. If no patient advocate is named (in a MPOA/Appointment of Patient Advocate document), the hospital and family may need to petition the Court to appoint a Guardian for the purpose of making decisions regarding the surgery. If Dad recovers mentally following the surgery and removal of the

infection, the guardianship may terminate. However, if Dad never recovers mentally, he may need a guardian long-term. The disadvantages of a guardianship, as opposed to a power of attorney, are several. A guardian is appointed by the court, rather than chosen by the incapacitated adult. While some adults may give input as to their choice (depending on level of disability), the Court has the ultimate authority. Furthermore, the Court is bound by law to consider certain persons with priority to act as Guardian. And, the guardianship, though much more expensive than simply executing a MPOA document/patient advocate designation, does not permit the disabled adult to make clear his/her desires in certain medical situations, as a MPOA would permit. Adult guardianships also vary—it depends on the type of disability and when it was developed. It is wise to discuss these issues with an attorney in your state who deals with elder law issues and other estate planning issues to help you determine what would be best for you and for your family member. No two cases are exactly alike and each needs its own consideration to meet the family’s goals.

Attorney Lorrie Miller

Serving Hillsdale and Branch Counties

A Truly Personal Experience

Call us at 517.278.2505 or email Simply Seniors -WINTER 2024 | 11



Call the Office of Veterans Affairs (517) 437-3630 to speak with someone concerning the services that are available to you Call the Office Veterans Affairs in (517) 437-3630 to speak as a veteran. Weof can assist veterans filing for all Federal, State withCounty someone concerning the services are has available to you and Veterans benefits. Each VAthat benefit its own as a veteran. We can assist veterans in filing for all Federal, State eligibility requirements. and County Veterans benefits. Eachoffers VA benefit has its own Transportation— Hillsdale County transportation to Ann Arbor Monday through Thursday by appointment only and for eligibility requirements. VA Clinic or hospital only. Call (517) offers 437-3630 for availability. Transportation— Hillsdale County transportation to Ann

Arbor Monday through Thursday by appointment only and for

OTHER VETERANS MAY 437-3630 INCLUDE:for availability. VA Clinic or hospitalSERVICES only. Call (517) Disability Compensation — You may be compensated if you are at least 10% disabled SERVICES as a result of your military service. OTHER VETERANS MAY INCLUDE: Disability Pension — You may be paid a pension if you are a Disability Compensation — You may be compensated if you are wartime veteran with limited income and are no longer able to at least 10% disabled as a result of your military service. work or are age 65 or older. Disability Pension — You may be paid a pension if you are a Educational & Training Benefits — The VA pays benefits to wartime veterandependents, with limited income andand areservice no longer able to eligible veterans, reservists members work or are age 65 or older. while they are in approved training programs.

Educational & Training Benefits — The VA pays benefits to

eligible veterans, dependents, reservists and service members VETERANS TREATMENT COURT: while they are approved training programs. Home Loans —in The VA offers a number of home loan services to eligible veterans, some military personnel and certain spouses. We can assistTREATMENT you in obtaining a Certificate of Eligibility. VETERANS COURT: Burial Benefits — The VA offers certain benefits Home Loans — The VA offers a number of home and loanservices servicesto to honor our Nation’s deceased veterans. eligible veterans, some military personnel and certain spouses. Dependents’ Survivors’ Benefits — Dependency and We can assist&you in obtaining a Certificate of Eligibility. Indemnity Compensation is certain payablebenefits to survivors of Burial Benefits — The VA(DIC) offers and services to services members who died on active duty, veterans who honor our Nation’s deceased veterans. died from service-related disabilities, and certain Dependents’ & Survivors’ Benefits — Dependency and veterans who were being paid 100% VA disability Indemnity Compensation (DIC) is payable to survivors of compensation at the time of death. services members who died on active veterans who Health Care — VA Civilian Health and duty, Medical Program died from service-related disabilities, and certain (CHAMPAVA) shares the cost of medical services for veterans who were and being paid 100% VA disability eligible dependents survivors of certain veterans. compensation at the time of death. Health Care — VA Civilian Health and Medical Program (CHAMPAVA) shares the cost of medical services for eligible dependents and survivors of certain veterans.


LOCAL SERVICES FOR VETERANS: SERVICES FOR We can assist veterans LOCAL in filing for all Federal, StateVETERANS: and County Veteran’s benefits. We can assist veterans in filing for all Federal, State and County Veterans benefits. TRANSPORTATION: TRANSPORTATION: Hillsdale County offers transportation to Ann Arbor Monday through Thursday by appointment only and for to VAAnn Clinic or hospital only. Hillsdale County offers transportation Arbor Monday through Thursday

COUNTY OF HILLSDALE VETERANS SERVICES by appointment only and for VA Clinic or hospital only.

LOCAL SERVICES FOR VETERANS: We can assist veterans in filing for all Federal, State and County Veterans benefits. TRANSPORTATION: Hillsdale County offers transportation to Ann Arbor Monday through Thursday Director of Veteran Affairs Renae Shircliff — by McCollum appointment VA Clinic or hospital only. 33 St. only Suiteand 108,for Hillsdale • 517-437-3630 Director of Veterans Affairs Renae Shircliff — 33 McCollum St. Suite 108, Hillsdale • 517-437-3630 12 - Simply Seniors 2021 SIMPLY 2024 SENIORS — WINTER 18 ||WINTER





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The Perfect Little Pine Tree

By: Deb Petticrew

There are so many wonderful memories at this time of the year. They drift in and out of the mind like tiny little short movies as we think back to how things were. One of my favorite memories is from when I was about 10 years old and my brother Chuck was about 7. It was probably around 1964 and we, of course, were making lists of everything we wanted for Christmas. We spent hours going through the Sears catalog, circling this and highlighting that. We were still at an age filled with the wonder and excitement of the season. Our grandma lived in a trailer in our side yard at that time, and I remember asking her what she was hoping Santa would bring her. “Oh, honey,” she replied, “I have everything I need. Santa won’t be stopping here.” Well, that just made my little heart so sad!! How could Santa not stop and visit Grandma? So, Chuck and I had a planning session and decided we’d be “Santa” for her!! We spent days putting it all together. Mom took us to the 5 & 10 store in Morenci to spend the little bit of money that we had saved. I remember walking down the aisles and hearing the

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squeak of the old floorboards, while we looked for the perfect gifts. I don’t recall everything we got, but one gift I do remember was a little white ceramic cat, no bigger than 4” tall, that cost 25 cents. Everything else was homemade. We decorated a cigar box and I glued 2 paper plates together to make a little pocket that she could put mail in. We took our time wrapping each gift so it would be perfect. Then came the tree. It had to be small, because Grandma’s front room in her trailer was quite little. So, we went up and down our country road, looking for the perfect little pine tree. Finally, when we’d almost given up hope, we saw it! Just off the road a bit, nestled in with some small trees and surrounded by weeds, was a perfect pine tree, less than 3’ tall! We hurried and cut it down and put it in the little bucket we had prepared for it and took it to Grandma’s. She was tickled pink (she said) and watched as we strung one of our old string of lights. Of course, they were so heavy that they weighed it down terribly and yes, it did look like Charlie Brown’s tree (which actually came out the very next year!) But we thought it

was beautiful and added a few handmade ornaments to complete the look. We wanted the gifts to be from Santa, so on Christmas eve, when Grandma reminded me to lock her door, well, I didn’t do it. Instead, I left it unlocked and ready. We stayed up until just after midnight and, certain that she was sound asleep by then, we snuck over with our gifts. We opened her door and put all of the gifts under her tree, giggling and excited, and when we left, we made sure we locked her door. Of course, we were up at 4 and then 5 and then finally at 6, Mom and Dad said we could start Christmas. We had fun opening our gifts, but we couldn’t wait to hear what Grandma said! Finally, the phone rang and we heard Mom talking. After she hung up, she turned and said, “Hmmm. Grandma says that Santa showed up at her place last night! Do you two have any idea how that happened??” Of course, we were clueless and played our part like we were going for an Academy Award! But, seeing the smile on Grandma’s face later, as we went to see what she got was worth it all. I’m pretty sure she knew it was us, but she played along. She said it was probably the “magic tree” that we’d found and decorated and Santa probably saw it and decided to leave some wonderful gifts for her. And isn’t that one of the reasons we love Christmas? The magic, the wonder, the childlike faith that nobody would miss out on the joy that the season holds. All because of a little baby, born in a manger. Simply Seniors -WINTER 2024 | 15

Flip Flop Forward At a fancy pancy country club, I speak in front of an audience of elegant women. They’re reserved. How can I loosen them up a bit? These ladies sit tall, properly dressed in the best attire. By Laura Loveberry Elementary School Assembly Author/Speaker, Inspirational Speaker Women’s Retreats/ Conferences, Caricature Artist

Suddenly, I fidget to adjust my hidden situation. My panty hose decided to release their elasticity. . . every thread of it . . . in the middle of my message. My eyes widen to the size of quarters. Ut, Oh! Maybe stepping to the side will work the sagging hose back upward. Nope. Not a chance. I shuffle like a Walmart shopper testing shoes with a tag attaching the pair. Now, I stumble in stutter steps, because the crotch on my nylons drops down to my knees. It’s below my hemline. My eyes pop open wider. Sweat drips off my forehead. My mind spins. What’s plan B? Simpering, I announce, “Okay, everyone, turn to someone, telling them you’re glad they’re here. Tell them Jesus loves them. Give them a hug. I’ll be back.” I do my short-step shuffle to the bathroom. Faces crunch, glancing

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around. Eyes roll down, spotting my baggy ankles. I shake my head back and forth. More sweat rolls. Eyes twitching, I scurry out inch by inch. Snickers and giggles follow me. Stumbling into the restroom, I yank off the failed hosiery, looking for a trash can to pitch it. Catching my frazzled face in the mirror, I stop and smirk a grin, nodding my head. I shall jump to plan B—entertain them with a grand reentrance. Strutting full stride back into the ladies’ event, holding my hosiery high over my head, I announce, “I’m back, but my naughty nylon failed. Ladies, nothing will stop my message!” I twirl like a ribbon dancer—the hose circling in the air. The no-longer reserved audience, hoots and hollers. We broke the stuffiness. My applauding audience engages in the remaining message. We bond with silliness and laughter. “Though he fall, he shall not be cast headlong, for the LORD upholds his hand,” (Psalm 37:24 ESV). When we come close to flopping, we can flip it, twirl, and triumph.


Rely on RUUD.



1401 VERA DR. • HILLSDALE, MI 49242

Simply Seniors -WINTER 2024 | 17

Oh My


By Shar Ann Packard


his year will be John’s and my 50th year celebrating Christmas as a married couple. As I sit here, I think about all our Christmases together, and which ones I hold closer to my heart. When I close my eyes, I think about our Christmas trees…The one we have now is an artificial tree that looks like it has ice and pinecones, and is pre-lit. We only put antique ornaments on it that we have collected over the years, and it is lovely…not as lovely as Christmas trees in the past, but it is just what we want!

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Our first year we had a little tree, and it looked a lot like Charlie Brown's Christmas tree. I remember picking it out at the Jenkin’s corner gas station/bar/ restaurant/auto parts store in Adrian. They only had a few left, leaning against a wire strung by the side door of the establishment. And there in between the few to pick from, was this little “sad” tree and I just had to have it. We went in and talked to Bill about the price, and he said he would give us the tree for our wedding present (we were married December 8th, 1973). These newlyweds left smiling, to put our gift of our first tree into our trunk of the ‘67 Mustang; the trunk closed all the way…that is how little it was. I had a pan we filled up with water and sat the tree in that leaning against the wall of the house we rented. No lights, but we did get a few ornaments from my mom and placed them on the tree. It was just the most beautiful tree in the world! The “giving tree" has a special place in my heart. John and I spent the day together and picked out our tree, cut it, brought it home and decorated it. I placed all the presents I had hand made for everyone under it. By then we had acquired quite a lot of decorations and the house looked like a Good Housekeeping picture in my mind. I baked cookies all day and had a few extra plates made up for special families we knew. Monday came and John went to work so I decided to go out and deliver a few presents and cookies. One family so near and dear to my heart had a lot of children, so I made hats and mittens for all of them. When I got to their home, I noticed they did not have a tree. After watching the kids open their presents and we all sat and ate cookies, the mom thanked me and said this just made Christmas so special for her family. She said times were hard and they were blessed enough to pay their light bill and they had heat in the house, food from the church next door and now these beautiful, knitted hats and mittens. No tree but so blessed. I went home, undecorated our tree…loaded it up in the truck and delivered it to them. Many tears were shed, as well as lots of laughter and squealing from the children. What a perfect tree for the perfect family. After explaining to John where the tree went when he came home, he just hugged me and said it was just fine because he hated undecorating the tree anyway!

my gosh, we turned the corner and there she stood… fat and full and just perfect. I remember the owner helping Allen cut it down and putting it into our truck bed. I was standing there thinking, it did not look this big in the field. WOW it hung out the sides of the truck! All the way home I was wondering how the heck would we get this in the house. There was no way it would fit in the door. Also, on our way home the wind was blowing hard, and the tree blew out of the bed of the truck into a field. I stopped and it was all Allen and I could do, dragging it back to the truck. There was an old man who stopped and helped me get it back in the truck. As he left, he asked, “Why such a big tree?” and little Allen said, “Because my mom loves it!” Out of the mouth of babes…I loved it because of him even more! To make a long story short (kind of ), John came home from work and he cut and cut on that tree to get it into the house. One side had to be trimmed to the extent of almost no branches. But we had a beautiful open staircase and that tree nestled into the corner just perfectly. No one could tell that half the tree was removed to get into the door, and it had to be tied to the rails of the staircase so it would stand up. After setting it into a large pan (the trunk was too big for the tree stand) we decorated it with the popcorn and berries we strung and beautiful little ornaments a little boy and his momma made. It took us several days to get it just the way we wanted it; most decorations were about 3 feet off the floor where a little guy could reach. Again, JUST PERFECT! My heart is so full of Christmas memories we have made together, but aches for the Christmas “before us” the Christmas when my dad and mom would get all 5 kids to bed and rush around the small three bedroom home “unhiding” presents to place under the tree that had hands full of tinsel thrown onto it, bright shiny bulbs that were hot to touch and homemade ornaments made by a child's hand in school. Waking up with bare feet on cold cement floors and running to see Mom and Dad already up and drinking coffee at the table, waiting for the magical moment when the day would begin with presents ripped open, paper everywhere, squeals and joy of Christmas in the little house on Treat Road. Now gone but “OH MY”, forever in my heart!

My favorite tree was HUGE! Allen (then 6 years old) and I went to pick it out because John was working overtime and didn’t have time to go with us. It was cold as we walked and walked through the tree farm. Oh Simply Seniors -WINTER 2024 | 19

Senior Moments


By Willie Smith

enior Moments - we all have them,

real bad. I’d walk into a store and I felt like I

some of us more than others. I

was in a fog. Things weren’t clear at all. My

believe I’ve had more than my share

husband would ask me to help him look for

of senior moments and I’m about ready to

road signs, but I had to be within five feet of

hire a personal manager to take care of all

the sign before I could read it. By then he’d

my issues. Let me tell you about my latest

passed the road and got all grumpy with


me because I didn’t tell him in time to slow

I hate spending money on things I find unnecessary, like the eye doctor. I had my eyes checked in 2019 and bought brand

down and turn. The man is grumpy enough without me giving him extra ammunition for his bad attitude.

new glasses so I should be good for anoth-

I decided I’d better get to the eye doctor

er couple of years, right? Believe it or not,

and “see” what the problem was. Well, lo

that’s not the case. Okay, I’m kidding, I know

and behold I had cataracts in both eyes. No

I need my eyes checked yearly, but the

wonder I couldn’t see diddly. The doctor

money you have to spend not only on the

said I needed surgery right away so I could

office visit but then the glasses to boot is

see again. Well dang! There goes the cash

outrageous. They say aging is not for sissies,

I’d planned on spending for my monthly

but it’s not for the cheap either!

massage and spa treatments for the next

I was all set to wait that couple of years for my eye exam, but suddenly I started having problems with my vision. The fact that I never wore those glasses I bought and paid big bucks for back in ‘19 I’m sure had something to do with it, but my vision was bad, 20 | WINTER 2024 - Simply Seniors

year. That is a necessity as far as I’m concerned. I mean it takes a lot to keep this old girl in tip top shape, but if I can’t see I can’t drive to the appointment and therein lies my very big problem. I swear, the older I get the more problems I have, but not having

my spa moments is at the top of the problem pile! As my husband will tell you, I tend to get a little cranky when I’m denied my spa time. For the sake of all those I love and those who have to deal with me on the road, I had the cataract surgery in September. It wasn’t as bad as I anticipated and I have to tell you the nurse who took care of me after the surgery was so sweet and so very cute I wanted to have the surgery all over again just so he could take care of me again. He pampered me enough that I didn’t need my spa treatment that month. Coffee, juice, water, an extra blanket, all I had to do was ask and he provided. Gotta love that! I would have asked that young man to come home with me, but I just couldn’t see my husband going along with that idea. I just might hire that personal manager I mentioned and the first thing I’d have done is to schedule more body parts to be fixed so I could see that nurse again. Ya got-

ta love some of these Senior Moments. 40 S. Manning St., Hillsdale | 517-437-3160

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Your memories, keep them well. What you forget, you can never retell. -LOUISA MAY ALCOTT- Simply Seniors -WINTER 2024 | 21

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Simply Seniors -WINTER 2024 | 23


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Many of us put our travel plans on hold at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. And the thought of travel can still cause worry, whether that's related to the fear of catching COVID-19 or the unease stemming from a lack of practice. But being prepared and taking precautions can help ensure you enjoy a much-needed trip. In general, traveling, going to new places and meeting up with family and old and new friends is really vital for our mental health,” said Kathleen Cameron, senior director of NCOA's Center for Healthy Aging. When planning a trip, and while you're on the road to adventure, follow these tips to help everything go as smoothly as possible. Choose a hotel that meets your needs While most hotels can accommodate a guest’s mobility, some places that are off the beaten path or historical haven’t been updated. This can mean falls hazards on stairs or uneven floors, or accessibility issues at the entrance to the hotel and to the rooms. Before booking a hotel, call ahead to make sure the hotel has elevators, and ask if the elevator is 26 | WINTER 2024 - Simply Seniors


wheelchair accessible if you need it. If not, ask if they can accommodate a first-floor request. Even if you’re traveling with a tour company, don’t hesitate to call a hotel directly if you have concerns about accessibility.

Don’t publicize your trip on social media It’s natural to want to share your excitement about an upcoming trip, but think twice before posting it on social media. There are many reported cases of thieves using social media to target homes when the owner announces they’re going on a long trip. Facebook’s default privacy setting isn’t particularly private. You may think only your closest friends can see your post, but unless you have strict privacy settings enabled, anyone who is friends with your friends, and even some people who aren’t acquainted with you at all, can see your post. You also might want to consider asking a trusted friend or family member to house sit while you’re away.

Know the TSA rules While you’re trying to figure out where to pack your sunhat and flip flops, don’t forget about your prescriptions. If you are one of the nearly 9 in 10 older adults who takes at least one medication, always pack it in your carryon where you can access it easily, and it can’t be lost by an airline. “Carry your medications with you on your person and not in your luggage,” Cameron advises. If your medication is a liquid and requires that you also have syringes,

pumps, freezer packs, or IV bags, the TSA will allow you to carry it all on the plane. Before you pack, check the TSA’s rules, so you know how to pack them. It’s also a good idea to have a backup plan in case something goes wrong. Make sure to take a list of your medications, doctors, and the location of a pharmacy covered by your insurance (or Medicare) at your destination. Bonus: If you’re 75 or older, TSA usually allows you to go through the security pre-check line, which means you don’t have to remove your shoes or separate laptops or liquids from your carry-on. For those younger than 75 who can’t—or don’t want to—stand in long security lines, the TSA Precheck or Global Entry program are options. TSA Precheck is for flights between U.S. airports, and Global Entry is for international flights. Each program has a non-refundable application fee, and you have to apply for the program well in advance of your travel. But if approved, your status lasts for five years.

Stay healthy on route to, and on, the plane Busy airports and tight spaces while getting on an airplane can be a fall risk. The airline will help if you call ahead and ask about priority boarding. You’ll also want to talk with the airline if you have a chronic condition that has dietary restrictions, such as diabetes, high cholesterol, or hypertension, and you’re taking a long flight that overlaps when you know you should eat. A representative can tell you if they can accommodate your dietary needs. If they can’t, pack food for yourself. Airplane air can pose challenges. A plane cabin at high altitudes typically has much less humidity than a normal environment, which can put you at higher risk of dehydration and respiratory diseases. Be sure to drink lots of water on the plane. "On really long airplane trips, be sure you walk in the aisle to prevent blood clots, particularly for those at high risk," Cameron said. That includes people who've had surgeries or recent hospitalizations, cancer, or have a family history of blood clots. It’s also good to take steps to protect your immune system, which naturally weakens with age. Pack anti-bacterial wipes in your carryon so you can disinfect your seat, seatbelt, tray, and armrest. Before your trip, talk to your doctor to make sure you’re up-to-date on all of your immunizations, including the flu shot and COVID-19 boosters. "Many older adults, they’re still unaware of the booster or, frankly, its importance—that it’s an extra layer of protection different than those initial dosages," said NCOA President and CEO Ramsey Alwin.

Don’t be a target for theft Older adults are targets for theft and fraud. Whether you’re traveling alone or with a group, take precautions to protect yourself both inside and outside of your hotel room.

If you’re traveling internationally, consider using cash for most purchases. Credit card fraud is prevalent in tourist destinations. Unless you plan to monitor your transaction history via a mobile app, cash will reduce your risk. Getting foreign currency is easier than ever. Check with your home bank to see if you can use your debit card to withdraw cash from ATMs at your destination. Some banks will even let you withdraw without additional fees. Plus, you may get a better conversion rate doing it this way. If you opt for the credit card route, call the credit card issuer before your trip to let them know where and when you’re traveling. They can tell you if there is a foreign transaction fee for using your card abroad and how the conversion rate is applied to charges. Alerting the company allows it to more easily track potential fraudulent activity and issue a refund quickly if you get hit. However, most credit card companies will deactivate your card in the case of fraud and will only mail a replacement to your account address. So take a backup card just in case.

Keep important documents on hand Before leaving home, make copies of your important documents, like your passport, driver’s license, Medicare card, and itinerary. Pack an extra set with you, and make sure to leave copies with people you trust at home (or have access to scanned versions). If you lose your ID or it’s stolen, this will make it easier to get replacements. Also, always make sure to carry emergency contact information and identification on you while out and about. If a medical emergency happens, the people providing assistance will need to know your emergency contact and a health care provider at home. Now that you’re equipped with these smart travel tips, enjoy your trip and make wonderful new memories! Happy travels!

Check with your hotel to see if it has a safe in your room for your passport, jewelry, or excess cash. And always double-check to make sure the code works before placing your belongings inside. Keep anything you consider valuable inside the safe. Consider also investing in pick-pocket proof travel clothes. Many companies design fashionable pants and jackets that come with deep inside zipper and magnetically sealed pockets that help keep your valuables safe from pick pocketers.

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As we age, we must be even smarter about our financial choices.

When money matures Getting older isn’t all bad. If you’ve accumulated wealth over your working years, it can be the time to enjoy all of that hard work. But financial stresses often arise, including budgeting concerns, income limitations and even fraud. These tips will help older adults ensure their cash lasts as long as they do. Budget carefully. During retirement, income tends to be lower than it was in the prime earning years, and that means older adults need to look for ways to limit expenses to make their nest eggs last. Eric Meermann, a certified financial planner with Palisades Hudson Financial Group and contributor to the new book, “Looking Ahead: Life, Family, Wealth and Business After 55,” says one key is to track living expenses to make sure you don’t burn through savings too fast. Don’t be too generous. When grown children are struggling with their own financial lives, it can be tempting to open up your bank account to them. The problem with this approach is that it can stress your finances and lead to family tension. That’s why Bart Astor, author of “AARP Roadmap for the Rest of Your Life,” says it’s important to 28 | Winter 2024 - Simply Seniors

make protecting your money a priority, even while trying to help your children. Plan with your partner. Even if you’ve been married to your spouse for years, it’s possible that you have different visions of how to spend your retirement years. That’s what Ellen Rogin, a financial services professional and co-author of “Picture Your Prosperity,” discovered when she learned her husband wanted to spend time on a sailboat in the Caribbean. Once she knew about his dream, they could start planning for it. Make sure your bank is on your side. Some banks cater to older clients more than others, with perks such as using larger print in communication, meeting outside of the bank and speaking clearly without being condescending. Asking about your bank’s age-friendly policies before you need them can help ensure you don’t get frustrated with its policies later.

Put fraud safeguards in place. Older adults are at a greater risk for financial fraud, but there are ways to reduce that risk. Family members can be alerted to large withdrawals from accounts, debit cards can be programmed to only work in certain locations and names and numbers can be placed on “do not call” lists. Prepare for cognitive decline. When it comes to managing money, signs of cognitive decline tend to show up in one’s 60s and 70s. It can become harder to manage bills, calculate tips and make change. Sometimes adult children or others can help prevent bigger problems, like falling behind on bills, by noticing those red flags and stepping in to help. Keep learning. While cognitive decline is real, other research suggests that older adults with higher levels of financial literacy are more likely to have higher wealth levels. Understanding concepts of investment risk and the stock market is associated with the ability to build and preserve wealth, according to the research of Joosuk Sebastian Chae of the University of Massachusetts. Protect your digital assets. If you’re active on social media or have an extensive digital library or music or books, you’ll want to consider how to pass on those digital assets when you die. You can include your wishes in your will, pick someone to share account information with and restrict your privacy settings now so you’re not oversharing personal details with strangers.

Get money help from your adult children. Adult children can often play a useful role in helping their parents manage money as they age. It’s important to enlist the support of children before experiencing a crisis or cognitive decline, so they know the basics of where to find account information if they need to. Talking through plans and wishes, and even writing out an overview of how you want to manage money as you age, can also help. Consider launching a business. Starting a business in midlife or later can add to your income in retirement as well as bring a measure of professional and creative satisfaction even after you leave your day job. Author Lynne Strang, who opted for self-employment at midlife herself, found a huge growth in the amount of support available to older entrepreneurs, including at AARP and the Small Business Administration. Teach your grandchildren about money. Grandparents can play a significant role in teaching grandchildren about the value of a dollar. A 2014 survey from TIAA-CREF found that many young people say they are open to talking about finances with their grandparents, but only a small percentage actually have those conversations. Still, most grandchildren say their grandparents do influence their financial habits.

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Deciding to become physically active can be one of the best things you can do for your health. Exercise and physical activity are not only great for your mental and physical health, but they can help keep you independent as you age. Now, let’s talk about getting started. How much activity do older adults need? According to the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans you should do at least 150 minutes (2½ hours) a week of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise, like brisk walking or fast dancing. Being active at least three days a week is best, but doing anything is better than doing nothing at all. You should also do muscle-strengthening activities, like lifting weights or doing situps, at least two days a week. The Physical Activity Guidelines also recommend that as part of your weekly physical activity, you combine multiple components of exercises. For example, try balance training as well as aerobic and muscle-strengthening activities. If you prefer vigorous-intensity aerobic activity (like running), aim for at least 75 minutes a week.

How older adults can get started with exercise Exercise and physical activity are great for your mental and physical health and help keep you independent as you age. Here are a few things you may want to keep in mind when beginning to exercise.

Start slowly when beginning exercise The key to being successful and safe when beginning a physical activity routine is to build slowly from your current fitness level. Overexercising can cause injury, which may lead to quitting. A steady rate of progress is the best approach.

To play it safe and reduce your risk of injury: Begin your exercise program slowly with lowintensity exercises. Warm up before exercising and cool down afterward. Pay attention to your surroundings when exercising outdoors. Drink water before, during, and after your workout session, even if you don’t feel thirsty. Play catch, kickball, basketball, or soccer. 30 | WINTER 2024 - Simply Seniors

Wear appropriate fitness clothes and shoes for your activity.

If you have specific health conditions, discuss your exercise and physical activity plan with your health care provider. Don’t forget to test your current fitness level for all four types of exercise — endurance, balance, flexibility, and strength. You may be in shape for running, but if you’re not stretching, you’re not getting the maximum benefit from your exercise. Write down your results so you can track your progress as you continue to exercise. Make notes about how these test exercises feel. If the exercises were hard, do what’s comfortable and slowly build up. If they were easy, you know your level of fitness is higher. You can be more ambitious and challenge yourself.

you may need to buy walking shoes or fill out an Activity Log so you can figure out how to fit physical activity into your busy day. Make sure your short-term goals will really help you be active. Here are a few examples of short-term goals: Today, I will decide to be more active. Tomorrow, I will find out about exercise classes in my area. By the end of this week, I will talk with my friend about exercising with me a couple of times a week. In the next two weeks, I will make sure I have the shoes and comfortable clothes I need to start walking for exercise.

Four questions to ask your doctor about exercise

Write down your long-term goals

Are you considering adding exercise to your daily routine or significantly increasing your level of activity? Talk with your doctor about the exercises and physical activities that are best for you. During your appointment, you can ask:

After you write down your short-term goals, you can go on to identify your long-term goals. Focus on where you want to be in six months, a year, or two years from now. Long-term goals also should be realistic, personal, and important to you. Here are a few examples:

What types of exercise would work for me? Your medical history and current activity level will help your doctor recommend exercises that are doable and safe. Your doctor can also help you come up with a plan to gradually increase the intensity or duration of your physical activity. This information might be part of an exercise prescription, which indicates how you should exercise and for how long. You can “fill” this prescription by yourself or coordinate with a personal trainer or exercise medicine specialist. Are there any exercises or activities I should avoid? Your doctor can make recommendations based on your health history, keeping in mind any recent surgeries or ongoing health conditions such as arthritis, diabetes, or heart disease. This would be a great time to check with your doctor about any unexplained symptoms you’ve been experiencing, such as chest pain or pressure, joint pain, dizziness, or shortness of breath. Your doctor may recommend postponing exercise until the problem is diagnosed and treated. How does my health condition affect my ability to exercise? Some health conditions can affect your exercise routine. For example, people with arthritis may need to avoid some types of activity, especially when joints are swollen or inflamed. Those with diabetes may need to adjust their daily schedule, meal plan, or medications when planning their activities. Your doctor can talk with you about any adjustments you need to make to ensure that you get the most out of your new exercise routine. Is my preventive care up to date? Your doctor can tell you if there are any tests you might need. For example, women over age 65 should be checked regularly for osteoporosis.

How to set fitness goals Many people find that having a firm goal in mind motivates them to move ahead on a project. Goals are most useful when they are specific, realistic, and important to you. Be sure to review your goals regularly as you make progress or your priorities change.

By this time next year, I will swim one mile three times a week. Next summer, I will be able to play pitch and catch with my grandchildren. In six months, I will have my blood pressure under control by increasing my physical activity and following my doctor’s advice.

Write a plan to add exercise and physical activity to your life Some people find that writing an exercise and physical activity plan helps them keep their promise to be active, while some people can plunge into a new project without planning ahead. If you choose to make a plan, be sure the plan is realistic for you to do, especially as you gain experience in how to be active. You might even make a contract with a friend or family member to carry out your plan. Involving another person can help you keep your commitment. Check out the interactive Activity Planner from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Move Your Way campaign. It lets you build a weekly physical activity plan and then print it out. You can choose from a variety of fun and exciting endurance (aerobic) and strength exercises, personalize your activities by location and purpose, and indicate how much of each exercise you will do. Once you create your plan, don’t forget to add in balance and flexibility exercises.

Review and update your exercise plan regularly Regularly review and update your plan and long-term goals so that you can build on your success. Adjust your plan as you progress or if your schedule changes. You may find that things like vacations or illness can interrupt your physical activity routine. Don’t get discouraged! You can start exercising again and be successful.

Write down your short-term fitness goals Short-term goals will help you make physical activity a regular part of your daily life. For these goals, think about the things you’ll need to get or do in order to be physically active. For example,

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tertime WinTrivia

Circle the correct answer for each trivia question. Take your best guess!

1.Which phobia is known as an extreme fear of snow? a. Agoraphobia

b. Ecophobia

2. In which world city is the Winter Palace located? a. St. Petersburg, Russia b. Osaka, Japan

c. Chionophobia

c. Helsinki, Finland

3. Which country has won the most medals in the Winter Olympics? a. Germany

b. Norway

c. United States

4. What is the average temperature at the North Pole during the winter season? a. -20 degrees F b. -40 degrees F c. -60 degrees F 5. On which other planet in the solar system has snow been observed? a. Mars b. Jupiter c. Neptune 6. What country hosts the International Hair Freezing Contest? a. Iceland b. United States c. Canada 7. How big was the largest snowflake ever spotted and recorded? a. 8 inches b. 10 inches c. 15 inches 8. At which world landmark is the winter solstice celebrated? a. Great Wall of China b. Stonehenge c. Leaning Tower of Pisa 9. How many players does an ice hockey team have on the ice during a game? a. 6 b.7 c. 8 10. Which one of these is NOT the name of a figure skating jump? a. toe loop b. salchow c. flutz

Number correct ________ 40 | WINTER 2024 - Simply Seniors

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Word Scramble Unscramble the letters to reveal the winter-themed words!


1. _______________________


2. _______________________


3. _______________________


4. _______________________


5. _______________________


6. _______________________


7. _______________________


8. _______________________


9. _______________________

BZRDLZIA 10. _______________________ ALRPO RBAE 11. _______________________ ECI TIKANGS 12. _______________________ GLIMNET 13. _______________________ ISK NIPMGUJ 14. _______________________ SOFAENWLK 15. _______________________ NAGTOBGO 16. _______________________ Number correct ________

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Word Scramble scramble trivia Winter Trivia



1. C 2. A 3. B 4. B 5. A 6. C 7. C 8. B 9. A 10. C


word search

Winter Trivia Riddle Me This 1. C 2. A 3. B 4. B 5. A 6. C 7. C 8. B 9. A 10. C

Fact or Fiction


1. fact 2. fiction - it's France 3. fact 4. fact

pg 43

Riddle Me This

1. fact

pg 42

1. D 2. I 3. G 4. K 5. A 6. J 7. B 8. L 9. E 10. H 11. C 12. F

1. D 2. I 3. G 4. K 5. A 6. J 7. B 8. L 9. E 10. H 11. C 12. F


Fact or Fiction

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Puzzle Key

All About Snow 1. SNOWBLOWER

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The 1950s... ...were a decade marked by the post-World War II boom, the dawn of the Cold War and the civil rights movement in the United States. “America at this moment,” said the former British Prime Minister Winston Churchill in 1945, “stands at the summit of the world.” During the 1950s, it was easy to see what Churchill meant. The United States was the world’s strongest military power. Its economy was booming, and the fruits of this prosperity–new cars, suburban houses and other consumer goods–were available to more people than ever before. However, the 1950s were also an era of great conflict. For example, the nascent civil rights movement and the crusade against communism at home and abroad in the Korean War exposed underlying divisions in American society.

The Postwar Booms Historians use the word “boom” to describe a lot of things about the 1950s: the booming economy, the booming suburbs and most of all the so-called “baby boom.” This boom began in 1946, when a record number of babies–3.4 million–were born in the United States. About 4 million babies were born each year during the 1950s. In all, by the time the boom finally tapered off in 1964, there were almost 77 million “baby boomers.” After World War II ended, many Americans were eager to have children because they were confident that the future promised peace and prosperity. In many ways, they were right. Between 1945 and 1960, the gross national product more than doubled, growing from $200 billion to more than $500 billion, kicking off “the Golden Age of American Capitalism.” Much of this increase came from government spending: The construction of interstate highways and schools, the distribution of veterans’ benefits and most of all the increase in military spending–on goods like airplanes and new technologies like computers–all contributed to the decade’s economic growth. Rates of unemployment and inflation were low, and wages were high. Middle-class people had more money to spend than ever–and, because the variety and availability of consumer goods expanded along with the economy, they also had more things to buy.

Moving to the Suburbs The baby boom and the suburban boom went hand in hand. Almost as soon as World War II ended, developers such as William Levitt (whose “Levittowns” in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania would become the most famous symbols of suburban life in the 1950s) began to

buy land on the outskirts of cities and use mass production techniques to build modest, inexpensive tract houses there. The G.I. Bill subsidized low-cost mortgages for many returning soldiers, which meant that it was often cheaper to buy one of these suburban houses than it was to rent an apartment in the city. These houses were perfect for young families–they had informal “family rooms,” open floor plans and backyards– and so suburban developments earned nicknames like “Fertility Valley” and “The Rabbit Hutch.” Though the G.I. Bill helped white Americans prosper and accumulate wealth in the postwar years, it didn’t deliver on that promise for veterans of color. In fact, the wide disparity in the bill’s implementation ended up driving growing gaps in wealth, education and civil rights between white and Black Americans. Suburban homes, meanwhile, weren't always so perfect for the (mostly white) women who lived in them. In fact, the booms of the 1950s had a particularly confining effect on many American women. Advice books and magazine articles (“Don’t Be Afraid to Marry Young,” “Cooking to Me Is Poetry,” “Femininity Begins At Home”) urged women to leave the workforce and embrace their roles as wives and mothers. The idea that a woman’s most important job was to bear and rear children was hardly a new one, but it began to generate a great deal of dissatisfaction among women who yearned for a more fulfilling life. (In her 1963 book The Feminine Mystique, women’s rights advocate Betty Friedan argued that the suburbs were “burying women alive.”) This dissatisfaction, in turn, contributed to the rebirth of the feminist movement in the 1960s.

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