Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The blog is moved!

This blog is now part of a new website and can be found at:

The blog part can be read by clicking on the tab "blog" - but other topics are posted as well.

If you were subscribed to this blog - you will need to subscribe at the new site.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Still learnin after all these years :D

Almost ready to start placing posts on the new Word Press site for this blog.

I have spent a lot of time learning Word Press and the Thesis theme that I am using and the learning curve was very steep. In the midst of that my entire plumbing system is being re-done so that it is inside and not running directly under my floors and hovering over the Columbia River.

It's not been a very noisy process but it has needed my attention in terms of cosmetic planning - i.e. where do the pipes go? After they are all connected and tested - some kind of artistic cover will be built to hide them from view. My neighbors are full of good suggestions for that part of the project.

The pipes are actually plastic tubing that gets put together much like tinker toys and I now know much about this new kind of plumbing...

And early next year I will be offering local classes on parenting, aging and losing one's identity with retirement or job loss. These will happen through MindGlo, a new Portland business.

So it's been a month of teaching and learning - not how I imagined my older age to be at all - but I am very happy with the way my brain is still going full steam ahead...

Friday, August 28, 2009

More Twitter "Stuff"

Here are some photos from another evening with Twitter friends



Stewart [doesn't tweet much] @stewartraven


photos by @lynndorman

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Why I Love Twitter

Some people i know from Twitter arrived in Portland yesterday and we ate supper on my deck..

Here are some videos taken in an IPhone [I want one!!!]

[These were directed toward others on Twitter but they are still fun to see] [ click and watch]

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Abbot and Costello 2009

A friend sent this to me - although younger than I am - he's a luddite....we here know that you are never too old to understand computers ... but still - this is funny....


You have to be old enough to remember Abbott and Costello, and too old to REALLY understand computers, to fully appreciate this!!!!!!!!!

If Bud Abbott and Lou Costello were alive today, their infamous sketch, 'Who's on First?' might have turned out something like this:


ABBOTT: Super Duper computer store. Can I help you?

COSTELLO: Thanks I'm setting up an office in my den and I'm thinking about buying a computer.


COSTELLO: No, the name's Lou.

ABBOTT: Your computer?

COSTELLO: I don't own a computer. I want to buy one.


COSTELLO: I told you, my name's Lou.

ABBOTT: What about Windows?

COSTELLO: Why? Will it get stuffy in here?

ABBOTT: Do you want a computer with Windows?

COSTELLO: I don't know. What will I see when I look at the windows?

ABBOTT: Wallpaper.

COSTELLO: Never mind the windows. I need a computer and software.

ABBOTT: Software for Windows?

COSTELLO: No. On the computer! I need something I can use to write proposals, track expenses and run my business. What do you have?

ABBOTT: Office.

COSTELLO: Yeah, for my office. Can you recommend anything?

ABBOTT: I just did.

COSTELLO: You just did what?

ABBOTT: Recommend something.

COSTELLO: You recommended something?


COSTELLO: For my office?


COSTELLO: OK, what did you recommend for my office?

ABBOTT: Office.

COSTELLO: Yes, for my office!

ABBOTT: I recommend Office with Windows.

COSTELLO: I already have an office with windows! OK, let's just say I'm sitting at my computer and I want to type a
proposal. What do I need?


COSTELLO: What word?

ABBOTT: Word in Office.

COSTELLO: The only word in office is office.

ABBOTT: The Word in Office for Windows.

COSTELLO: Which word in office for windows?

ABBOTT: The Word you get when you click the blue 'W'.

COSTELLO: I'm going to click your blue 'w' if you don't start with some straight answers. What about financial bookkeeping? You have anything I can track my money with?

ABBOTT: Money.

COSTELLO: That's right. What do you have?

ABBOTT: Money.

COSTELLO: I need money to track my money?

ABBOTT: It comes bundled with your computer.

COSTELLO: What's bundled with my computer?

ABBOTT: Money.

COSTELLO: Money comes with my computer?

ABBOTT: Yes. No extra charge.

COSTELLO: I get a bundle of money with my computer? How much?

ABBOTT: One copy.

COSTELLO: Isn't it illegal to copy money?

ABBOTT: Microsoft gave us a license to copy Money.

COSTELLO: They can give you a license to copy money?


(A few days later)

ABBOTT: Super Duper computer store. Can I help you?

COSTELLO: How do I turn my computer off?

ABBOTT: Click on 'START'.............

Thursday, August 06, 2009

AARP Member? United Health Care Customer? Look where your money goes!

United Health Care - the CEO makes more in a day than most people make in years! But they are best known for denying coverage to clients AND for being the company that AARP sold/rented it's name to!

Yes - if you have AARP medicare coverage - you are supporting this person in the video ! think about that! I did and after issues with the seemingly forever increasing monthly costs I switched - and I had only had AARP plan for about 9 months! And after I canceled I got a nasty call form them! So I was more glad I had quit and I also quit AARP.... AARP does not have my or your best interests at heat - all they care about is the $$$ they can make from the name [and from members]

From BraveNew Films:

What does UnitedHealthcare CEO Stephen Hemsley have to lose if Congress passes real healthcare reform this year? Well, for starters, his nearly three quarters of a billion dollars in unexercised stock options might lose a few pennies on the dollar.

Heat waves are BAD for you!

Wow - a 10 day heat wave - each day we hit at least 90 and a few were over 100 and up to 107. With no AC - inside my house was about 8 degrees cooler! Yes it meant when out was 107 - in was 99! And for several nights it never cooled off like "normal" although I fear these current patterns are the new normal.

I get heat exhaustion and I know how to take care of me - but this kind of weather gets to me no matter how well prepared I am. I get light headed and nauseous and don't feel like eating. I literally ate meals when I did not want them as I knew that I had to eat...

No fun - sleep was bad even with fans going.

Anyway - IT"S OVER!!! and now I am catching up on what did not get done in that time frame....and trying to not overdo too much - already did that the other day and learned again that when you get older your body needs a little more time to recover from stress- no matter what caused the stress :D

2 things:

1- next summer an air conditioner will be bought

2- I will be moving this blog to a new hosting service when I figure it all out and an announcement will be posted

Friday, July 24, 2009

For Pacific North West people: heat wave coming!

Having lived on the hot and very humid East Coast with a personal history of heat exhaustion - I know the symptoms and what to do to take care - yet even then I have had problems in Portland.

Dealing with many days of hot in a row is something to be serious about. In fact, as a NET person we got warning that we may be put on stand-by...

Here are some precautions to take that we got from NET:

Check on family, friends and neighbors who do not have air conditioning, who spend much of their time alone or who are more likely to be affected by the heat.

Never leave anyone in an enclosed vehicle, even with the windows partially open.

Drink plenty of fluids, even if you don't feel thirsty. Start drinking fluids at least 30 minutes before going out.

Avoid beverages with caffeine, alcohol or large amounts of sugar because these can actually result in the loss of body fluid.

Eat smaller meals, more often, but be sure meals are well balanced, cool and light.

Take frequent breaks when working or recreating outside.

Wear sunscreen SPF 15 or higher, wide-brimmed hats and light-colored, loose-fitting clothes.

Dress infants and children in cool, loose clothing. Shade their heads and faces with hats or an umbrella. Use sunscreen as directed on small children!

Consult your health care provider about the added effects of sun and heat when taking prescription drugs, especially diuretics, antihistamines and antidepressants.

Check on your animals frequently to ensure they are not suffering from the heat, have water and shade.

and my own added warning - don't just drink water - you need electrolytes added to it - I use a product I market but there are others available - water alone can flush your system of needed resources. This many learn from experience - so learn from mine and take care this week.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Why I haven't written much lately

My long time best friend Freda, the one how had been ill since March - underwent surgery last week and died this week.

Her illness and death made it hard to write about aging - the "facts" of aging were all too clear and I was all too close.

I posted on Twitter and FaceBook that one of the bitches of aging is that all your friends start dying.

I'm feeling better today and will write more fact I will keep working on the e-book project she and I talked about before she got so ill... it will be about aging - including now more about having good friends die.

Monday, July 06, 2009

The Flu and You in Retrospect

I was asked by many why I did not write about the "swine flu" when everyone else was doing just that.

And my answer is - because everyone was writing about it and the information was getting confusing and making people so worried that they went out and paid lots of money for unknown and untested masks and other paraphernalia that were not going to help.

When I was asked what I personally was going to do - I said absolutely nothing and was told "good luck!"

It's not good luck - I take care of my immune system and it takes care of me. It's called good decision making as far as I am concerned.

This recent flu killed fewer people than usually die of flu every year. My cynical side tells me to follow the money and I'm guessing that a lot of people made a lot of money scaring everyone! Enterprising persons were selling masks in traffic to car drivers...c'mon when did we lose all common sense?

To protect yourself against the flu - you need to have a good defense and that's your immune system. You also need to eat properly and use supplements because our food is lacking the nutrients it used to have.

We are now far enough away form the media hysteria of the swine flu that we can look back and ask - what was all the fuss?

A new name? A new strain? I'm still not sure and I'm still just going to keep on ding what I have been doing most of my life - making sure my immune system is in the best shape it can be in.

If you want to read more about modern "foods" fill out the form on the upper right side of the blog.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

My friend the artist

I have known June since we were about 5 or 6 years old. She is an inspiring example of "it's never to late to follow your dream." Her dream was art and she is now an established artist with world wide showings!

If you are in or near New York City, Stockbridge, Mass or Newport, N.H. this Summer/Fall [see schedules] go see her work...

Curated by the Drawing Center.Joanna Kleinberg, and Rachael Liebowitz
Saturday May 30-October 4, 2009
Hours: Friday-Sunday 10-5
Ferry is free and runs hourly (7 minutes)
House 19 on Nolan Park

Work Included: No. 9 and D. D. 2

Opening Reception & Award Ceremony
July 3, 5 - 7 pm Open 10-5 daily
Curated by Denise Markonish, Curator at MASS MoCA

Work included: Our Shrinking World

Chesterwood Sculpture Park
4 Williamsville Road
Stockbridge, MA 01262


Curated by the Cynthia Reeves Gallery, New York, NY

Work included: Site dependent installation : In Depth 2009

August 8-November 7, 2009


The Newport Mill will feature 20 video pieces as well as a curated portion of the exhibition, including the work of several world-renowned visual artists. The multiple installation sites will encourage viewers to travel the Connecticut River Valley and further identify the region as one where art-making is alive, vital, and contemporary in scope.

NEWPORT MILL completed in 1906 on the bank of the Sugar River, The Newport Mill stands as the most architecturally significant industrial structure in this once thriving mill town. The four-story red brick building, accented by a six-story entrance tower, is comprised of over 60,000 square feet of interior space. A site for manufacturing and other business for decades, The Newport Mill is now completely renovated to allow for art exhibitions and other events of potentially unlimited parameters.

Web site:

Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day Thoughts

Some things change dramatically over time and I noticed that last night as I watched the Memorial Day concert from D.C. The story of the family whose son lost most of his brain got me and from that point to the end - I sobbed. When we lived in D.C., my son and I, along with friends, always went to the Memorial Day concert - ditto the 4th of July and Labor Day concerts. They were picnics on the lawn, kids climbing trees, music and good food.

We left D.C. in '96 and things have changed since then and last night's concert was certainly an example. It was more somber than any I have seen on TV since I left D.C. and also in that period of time I was a military mommy for 8 years.

I think all women and most men cry at the loss of a child - it happened in the 40's 50's 60's and 70's during WWII, Korea and Vietnam - and it still happens. I have been weeping for those lost in war since WWII [when my dad was in the military.] Both my dad and son were fine and were never in harms way - for which I was/am selfishly happy. But I had a stomach ache/ongoing worry for 8 years when my son was in and wondered on a daily basis if he'd be sent into war - especially after Sept 11, 2001. We, as parents, are not supposed to outlive our babies - it's not part of our psyches.

And so last night and still today - I weep for those mommies and daddies who have lost their children and for those children who have lost their mommies and daddies...and for those who lost husbands, wives and partners. It matters not how old we are - we hurt. To quote George McGovern: "I'm fed up to the ears with old men dreaming up wars for young men to die in."

Do not spend the day celebrating war or conflict - spend it in sober reflection about those who died and those who are wounded....and hug your kids - no matter how old they are.

Friday, May 15, 2009

FBI Scam letter - Update

There is a new twist on the FBI scam letter and it's this paragraph:



I post this again as some of you might know of persons who will be intimidated by the fear of being "charged" with something.

Again these emails are sent to "undisclosed recipients" meaning it went to a list of 100's if not tens of 1000's of email addresses.

If you have a friend, family or loved one who says anything about a letter from the FBI - please let them know it is a scam.

It's not really from
Robert S. Mueller, III - believe me he is not about to send you an email :D

Another warning signal is that every word starts with a capital letter - DUH - Who really writes like that except for scammers - it's their trademark!

Beware of these emails and just delete - do not worry - the FBI is not after you for this.....

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mother's Day - The original

This is my annual repost about the origin of mother's day.

We have gotten so far away from the original thoughts and made it into a shopping spree day - like all our holidays!

Take time today to think about what Julia Howe wrote.

Mother's Day Proclamation - 1870
by Julia Ward Howe

Arise then...women of this day!
Arise, all women who have hearts!
Whether your baptism be of water or of tears!
Say firmly:
"We will not have questions answered by irrelevant agencies,
Our husbands will not come to us, reeking with carnage,
For caresses and applause.
Our sons shall not be taken from us to unlearn
All that we have been able to teach them of charity, mercy and patience.
We, the women of one country,
Will be too tender of those of another country
To allow our sons to be trained to injure theirs."

From the voice of a devastated Earth a voice goes up with
Our own. It says: "Disarm! Disarm!
The sword of murder is not the balance of justice."
Blood does not wipe our dishonor,
Nor violence indicate possession.
As men have often forsaken the plough and the anvil
At the summons of war,
Let women now leave all that may be left of home
For a great and earnest day of counsel.
Let them meet first, as women, to bewail and commemorate the dead.
Let them solemnly take counsel with each other as to the means
Whereby the great human family can live in peace...
Each bearing after his own time the sacred impress, not of Caesar,
But of God -
In the name of womanhood and humanity, I earnestly ask
That a general congress of women without limit of nationality,
May be appointed and held at someplace deemed most convenient
And the earliest period consistent with its objects,
To promote the alliance of the different nationalities,
The amicable settlement of international questions,
The great and general interests of peace.


Thursday, May 07, 2009

Beware May Scams

I hate to keep posting about scams but I do keep hearing about older people getting taken in by them

If you collect Social Security you got a letter from them saying you will get your one time payment this month. That's good altho it's not a major amount. But the scammers know you got that letter as well and so they have reduced the amount they are asking when you get teh emails about the money they are holding for you.

My recent emails all ask for "only $99" to get that 1.5 gazillion :D some bank somewhere is holding for me.

And I expect you will start getting emails from those offering to "help" you get your $250 quicker! Or offering you a loan of $250 until you receive your money!

PLEASE do not contact these persons.....if you have your Social Security check automatically deposited - that's where this check will go! If you get your check mailed to you - this check will also be mailed to you. And I would guess that any loan you agree to will come with usurious high interest rates so that your $250 will not even make a dent in what you'll owe back in a few weeks.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

New Take on an Old Scam

As the economy stays pretty bad - the scammers are trying new tactics. This one purports to be from a U.S. citizen complete with name and address and we are to believe she went to Nigeria to get her money and saw "my" name, phone number and email....

The email itself is addressed to undisclosed-recipients so my name is only one of a long list of those to whom this was sent - and if she was being such a "good" citizen why did she not make a phone call?

And then there is this- where the scam makes an honest statement: You really have to stop your dealing with those contacting you through email communications.

Well yes - but - if we must stop communicating through email - why are you asking me to email this fake barrister?

BEWARE - people only want your money - if t were a real financial matter - you would be NOT be contacted by

Please do not respond to these....

Hello Friend,

I am Mrs. Jane W.Rowland, I am a U.S.A. citizen, 46 years Old. I reside here in West Texas. My residential address is as follows. 319 Runnels; Big Spring, Texas 79720, United States of America.

I am one of those that executed a contract in Nigeria years ago and they refused to pay me, I had paid over $70,000 trying to get my payment all to no avail. So I decided to travel down to Nigeria with all my contract documents.

And I was directed to meet Honourable Barrister Ben Mark ESQ, who is the Attorney General of CONTRACT AWARD COMMITTEE, and I contacted him and he explained everything to me. He said that those contacting us through emails are fake. Then he took me to the paying bank, which is THE CO-OPERATIVE BANK ONLINE OF NIGERIA PLC, and I am the happiest woman on this earth because I have received my contract funds of USD$5.6Million Moreover, Honourable Barrister Ben Mark showed me the full information of those that have not received their over due payment; and I saw your full name and email, your contract amount, your phone number as one of those that have not received their payment.

This is what you have to do right now. You have to contact him direct on this information below to release your payment.

Postiton: Head of Chambers.
Email Address:
Office Address: Plot 2961 Adeola Hopewell Street, Victoria Island, Lagos.

You really have to stop your dealing with those contacting you through email communications or telephone calls conversations, okay, because they will dry you up until you have nothing to eat. The only money I paid was just $1,200 for IRS permit fees, which you know. So you have to take note of that and act accordingly and I assure you that with the help of this reputable Attorney General (Honourable Barrister Ben Mark ESQ) your over due payment will be release and wire transferred to you.

Thank you very much as you read this message and God bless you and your family.

Mrs.Jane W.Rowland.

Voices in Our Heads: Mother's Day Memories

I am heavily invested in politics and even though election season is over politics is never ”over.” After a recent major fundraiser - which got me home very late - after a longer week of late nights – my body rebelled.

When I awoke, still tired, I heard my mother's voice "You know – you’re not 20 anymore."

There are other of her sayings that sometimes appear but “not 20 anymore” is the one that comes back with some regularity - especially when I am doing "things" that we ancient elders are not "supposed" to be doing.

My mom started on that mantra when I was in my 40's and began playing competitive softball, touch football and squash. All of these come with the possibility of injuries and I was not immune: broken finger, broken ankle, sore quads, and being hit by line drives!

Ouch - but I did not stop as my own mantra is “play when hurt.” I finished a softball double header with a broken finger and ended that season only after the orthopod said further injury could result in serious permanent impairment.

I would tell my mother of my latest games - injuries or not – and she would repeat her mantra. It became a regular laughing point of all our conversations and she admitted she wished she still could do what I was doing! This continued until she died at 95 and I was in my early 60's - still doing those sports and telling her about them.

So when I had my exhausting week - her words rang in my head and I wondered if she was somewhere shaking her head proudly saying aloud to all who listen "that daughter of mine" - then to me "You know – you’re not 20 anymore."

Friday, April 17, 2009

The Top 100 Best Wellness Blogs for Women

Masters in Health Care included this blog on their list of 100 Best Wellness Blogs for Women. It's #87 on this site and in the category of Fit and Healthy After a Certain Age.

Although I giggle at the concept of "after a certain age" I am grateful for this honor.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Credit Card Scammers

There is a company who keeps calling - they use a 506 area code but the number that shows up in your caller ID has too many digits - it is not a real number and you can not call it back and they never ever leave a message.

One day they called me 3-4 times in an hour then they went away for months- but they come back - like today.

I once answered to try to find out who they were. After asking a few times for the company name - I got words along the line of "card services." If you press on with your questions you get "we can help you with your credit card." If you ask which card; they say all of them [?] When someone calls me and I have to ask questions about why they are calling - I am suspicious.

And if you continue to question them - guess what happens? Yup - they hang up on you :D

They have to be a scam - so if you see area code 506 followed by 229 or 224 or 222 do not bother answering.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Aging and Homelessness

I was chatting with a neighbor the other day about wine - when she just blurted out that she had met with her financial advisor last week and was told in no uncertain terms that she could not retire next year as she had planned on.... Her retirement fund had taken that big a nosedive!

She likes her job so she was not all that unhappy – but she been looking forward to spending more time with her grandchildren – and now her retirement is being put off until who-knows-when...

But as least she has a job and a retirement fund that may eventually creep back up into something akin to an amount to retire on.

Unfortunately for others the unemployment rate is at a record high, more stores are shuttering, more homeless are on the streets or in their old cars [including many more of the older generations – people like you and me.]

We used to respect our elders and take care of them. When did we lose that focus?

At some point in the last 30 or so years we became a me-first and a me-only culture and it’s now become apparent that the me-first/only greedy persons have devastated the world’s economy – of course while saving themselves.

It’s sad to see and read about people in their 70’s and 80’s living in cars. I love camping out – but that’s because I know I can get home and take a warm shower and eat warm food at the end of some stretch of time. I even lived in my VW van while driving to Alaska and back from the East coast – but again - I knew I had someplace to return to after 4 or more months of living in that vehicle --- and --- I was in my 30’s!

I can’t imagine doing that now for any long stretch of time – my body would be very unhappy -- and I expect those who are doing this hurt. Cars are not comfortable beds.

We again need to respect our elders and care for them – not leave then out in the streets.

Soon I will post about how our obsession with youthful looks and youthful people may be harmful.


Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Family Folktales- a book review

Family Folktales: What Are Yours? by Karen Pierce Gonzalez

This is not only a fun book to read, it’s super helpful for those wanting to document family history and be at a loss as to where or how to start that process.

Karen likens the family history process to writing folktales – you know - those stories you loved as a child and may still love. They have heroes and heroines; great feats of daring, wild hairstyles and clothing, silly but catchy anecdotes, tunes and lyrics, etc.

Well - doesn’t your family have tales that have things just like those? Mine certainly does.

In fact, not that long ago, my now 30-year-old son and I had this conversation:
“Mom you ought to write about your life.”
“Why?” said I
“Because it’s unique,” said he
“Eh” said I

Maybe that’s part of growing up in Cambria Heights,
[Queens, New York City] in the 40’s and 50’s.

But - thus began the writing
and this display
That exchange started me writing about my own life and the words above were the opening description of a photomontage for a museum exhibit – and that montage is now expanding into an e-book.

It has grown as I write about things I remember thru phone calls with friends, family and even newer neighbors – you never know what will start the flow of thoughts and words. [I never thought that that conversation with my son would lead to where it is now going.]

So it’s great that Karen provides her readers with all sorts of useful tools and hints to get that writing brain in gear. She lists different folk “characters,” places and events that might joggle the memory, and things or items that might do likewise.

What I liked best, though, was she offers a process for actually getting the writing done and this is a good process for the doing of folktales or for whatever you might be writing.

In short: Warm up, find a “spot,” don’t try to be perfect, don’t worry about the format, don’t edit as you write and more.

She even has starting sentence stubs and blank pages in the book to get you going!

And great suggestions on how to enhance and share what you do and concludes with some sample family folktales.

It got me going just in doing this review – I’m on a writing roll again.

Thank you Karen ☺

Monday, March 30, 2009

My Friend is Still Ill

It's been a week of ups and downs for her - they removed the breathing tube only to have to put it back in and sedate her again.

Her son is good at sending daily updates but when we heard she was worse and then did not hear from him - two of us were very worried. One conversation last night between another friend and I really showed me how we all have a different way to cope with a possible impending death.

I kept saying "I won't go there - I won't talk about her dying at all" - "I am sending her healing prayers" and the other person was more into talk of her not having to redo her life as she was so totally complete in this one. To me that sounded a bit too pessimistic so I stuck to my "I won't go there" like a broken record.

Later a message from her son came - but it was after 11:30PM on the East Coast. I called my friend back as I knew she would not mind being awakened for good or even bad news. I read it to her - we were so happy and clearly relieved that there was improvement. Then we chatted for an hour or more with tales of the sick pal. She is a character - an individual - and there are many such tales - all of which we need now to get into written form and gather these kinds of tales from other mutual friends as well.

I do not believe in coincidences - for me all has a purpose. So when I had also been asked last week to review an ebook on writing family folk tales - I saw there was a reason I got that task the same week my friend got so ill.

I'll post my book review tomorrow - but for now just keep in mind when you think thoughts about your family or people you love - be they funny or sad or quirky - write them down..

Monday, March 23, 2009

When A Good Friend Is Critically Ill

I have a very good friend whom I have known for over 45 years. She was hospitalized yesterday and was in critical condition with pneumonia. As she has only one sort-of-good lung this is bad for her.

I spent time trying to figure out if I could get to when she is - but with it being Spring break - there were few flights available and they were almost $2,000 RT [for a flight that normally costs max $400 RT].

But her family asked that no one come while she is in the hospital as she is being cared for - so some will go after she is home...but the whole day left me wiped out from the idea of the potential loss of a good friend who is more like family than my actual family [except my son]

We all die - that is a given once we are born - but few of us like to face the reality when it's close to home. I teach and write about aging and always talk about dying as a part of the process. I will now have to re-assess my feelings about what I write and what I say on the topic.

Monday, March 16, 2009

My cat is angry :D

Cats are funny. My cat had a best friend who moved away a few weeks ago and she has no one to play with. Yes there are many other cats in the area but that was her best "bud."

So who gets blamed for Frodo not being here? Me! It's also my fault that it's gone into the 20's at night and that we've had hail, wind and monsoons during the day. Or at least it feels like I'm to blame.

Sheba, my cat, comes in and jumps all over the things in my office - my desk, window sill, and printer - then she sits and plays with the monitor. She never did this before Frodo left and I am trying very hard to convince her that she needs to learn to play nice with Angel - another cat her age. [It's like tying to get your child to play with a kid he or she does not like very much.]

Angel's dad and I laugh that since Frodo left, the two female cats have lessened the hissing distance between them - now they hiss from 3 feet away as opposed to 10 or more feet. I guess that's progress.

I'll be happy when she finds a new best bud to play with - outdoors - I do not make a good play partner for a cat - neither does my dog who tends to ignore her...[But then he is not at a desk with a computer and monitor - so ignoring is easy for him :D]

Any ideas? Please leave comments...thanks

Saturday, March 07, 2009

The Latest Scams

The scammers stay many steps ahead of those trying to catch them

We have been warned in Oregon by our Attorney General - and I'm sure it is elsewhere as well [in the USA] :

The scams about the stimulus money are here!

Please be careful if you get calls, emails or snail mail asking for personal information "necessary" for you to get your share of the stimulus package money....

If you are due any money - you will get it -

The scammers are out to get to your bank accounts and credit/debit cards to take your moey AWAY from you...

Also be very aware in this bad economy to not fall into the get rich quick schemes that are abounding. My email has been getting hit hard every day with more of those "we have your money waiting for you" and the otehr ones I have written about over time - only now they are coming at a faster pace due to the bad world wide economy.

Stay safe and if in doubt - call your Attorney General's Office to ask. There is no such thing as a silly question about money these days.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

More About That Running

I have been running several times a week since I got my new shoes...I love them that much...they make me feel like dancing - oh yes like running :D

Gave them a work out the other day - mud, wet sidewalks, wet grass and city streets....That day was more of a fast walking pace than running and I realized that my walking is now easily faster. The running has improved my walking and has made my dog happier as well as he is getting much more exercise.

Here are some photos of me and dog after one such run and a close up of the shoes which can be bought online at:
[I liked the shoes so much I told them I'd give their site a mention here :D]

When you take a picture of yourself with a remote - the remote is visible [in my right hand]

Sam the dog is happily chewing his rawhide bone while lying on his soft bed.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Friends: What a Wonderful World

A Twitter friend just sent this to me - I had to post it - it's such a gift!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Running – again - again?

I posted about running again last summer...did start then and went for many runs – some with a neighbor. Then it got cold, wet, snowy, slushy and well - all those things I use as excuses. Tried some treadmill running but that was short -lived as well.

So here we are in February and I’ve gotten back to running. The reason? I got a brand new pair of really neat running shoes to test.

Have you ever read Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury? I felt like that 12-year-old with his new sneakers. I remembered when I was a kid and got new sneakers. That feeling of I can do, jump, play any kind of ball...I was invincible!

Well these new shoes made me feel that way again and made me remember the book – [lost many moves ago as it’s no longer in my possession]

The first day I took dog with me and we did a slow run/jog/walk and I felt like I could go on forever...the shoes had me feel like I was capable of flying. Over the next few days, we [dog and I] added distances and speeds to our morning routine and then one day there was ice on the road.. Yup we are still having grrr winter at times :D

So what did we do? I ran faster on the icy road to see how good the traction was and it was better than other shoes I had worn this year...even though they are all the same brand.

Then yesterday we ran a long distance and we did a lot of it at a fast clip – fast for me is not as fast as for a real runner – but it was or felt like it was faster than I had ever run. In the same afternoon dog and I took a long walk – neither of us was tired..and that was a big wow – running really is a good thing to do...

An aside – on one of our first runs with these new shoes I realized that my dog and I are the same age :D – I’ve had dogs get this old but as I said in my last few posts – this is new for me....

Next I will go for a run without the dog – if I tell you it’s a male dog you might understand why it’s hard to keep up a running pace.

To be continued

Thursday, February 12, 2009

More thoughts on: 69 going on 70.....

I had a birthday almost 3 weeks ago and am still contemplating what this particular age means and why it feels so funny.

Just turned 69 and the day itself was a non-event - except that now, in a 3 week retrospective, it’s made me moody and I have not been particularly sociable since the birthday.

Being introspective – a bit too much at times – I finally figured it was the “being-close-to-70” that was getting to me. I never thought of myself at 70 and what it would be like and now here I almost am THAT! youch!

One of my best friends said she did not feel old til she was 75 so I still had 6 years to go on that but I told her I already felt the oncoming of “old.” There is some oddness to 70 that I still need to think about because it is interfering with my being and enjoying 69.

19, 29, 39, 49, 59 did not have the same “feel” to them – 29 was sort of odd as it was the heyday of “don’t trust anyone over 30” and there I was – turning 30 – and in Berkeley California to boot. At 39 I had a baby to take care of; at 49, I was in law school; and at 59 I was happy to be turning 60 at the same time as the new millennium! [By the way – do you remember all those Y2K fears?]

So here I am at 69 – an age with nothing really special about it for me as with the other “end-in-9-ages” – except that I am still alive, healthy and enjoying what I am doing – that’s special - but there is still that nag...

I look in a mirror and alternate between laughing and getting depressed. Me? Going on 70? How did that ever happen? How did I manage to get so old when I do not feel like I am 70. How did the years go by so fast without my doing all those things I always wanted to do? I stare at the mirror and see “old.” I am old in a chronological sense yet I also feel as if I have many more years to go before I really slow down.

My son laughs with or at me – reminds me that yes 69 years have passed since I was born – just like he reminded me on his last birthday that yes 30 years had had passed since he was born..

He must be lying - I still recall that newborn baby as if it were yesterday and I also recall times in my 20’s and 30’s as if they were yesterday – so maybe it is all a fantasy – I am not really 69 – because I can not really be going on 70 :D

Sunday, February 08, 2009

69 going on 70

I've been mulling over the meaning of being 69 and I will post my thoughts as soon as I have finished thinking them.

In the interim - post comments or pose some questions about what it means to be some particular age[s]...

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Birthdays and Water

Birthdays come once a year for each of us. Mine came and went and was a non-event. Last year I promised to have a party every year - that was after 2 good friends had died and I thought I should celebrate each birthday. Good idea - but bad timing :D

I have the good fortune of being an Aquarius - but in North America - in the places I have lived - that is more generally cold/rain/snow or yuk weather for parties.

And this year, like every 4 years, it is right after Inauguration Day. For the last few Inaugurations, that did not matter, but this one did - and I helped organize an Inauguration Watch breakfast on the 20th and went to a big bash that night.

But the final reasons for not having a party, not counting that I was already partied out - were 1] I had an all day meeting on my birthday so having a party the night before or night of was not a good idea BUT the real kicker ? 2] when I tried figuring out how to cook and clean with no running water in the kitchen!

Amazing how spoiled we have become. There are people without running water in the house and I complain about lack of same in the kitchen...It's made me think about getting more involved with organizations that work around the word to help others get clean running water.

Water is so necessary for our health and so easy to come by [except in my kitchen :D] that we who are so lucky to live with running water ought to help those who live without. It would make the world a better place for all of us.

On February 12th the world-wide Twitter community is hosting Twestivals which bring together Twitter communities for an evening of fun and to raise money and awareness for charity: water

So go Twitter , meet great people and do good....

Friday, January 23, 2009

Losing Fat in 2009

Months after starting on the product I use, I am again losing inches. My body is odd - it does things in bunches and then plateaus... So I lost inches at first, then plateaued, and now again lost inches.

I do not weigh myself that regularly or measure the inches but for Inaugural evening here I tried putting on a few dresses I had not worn in a while because they had made me "look fat" [you all know that feeling :D] - but on Tuesday evening they hung on me like the old potato sacks ! Ouch I had nothing fancy to wear to a "ball" - but this being Portland, a pair of semi-dressy pants and a jacket passes as "dressed-up" even among the evening gowns... [I hear opera goers can range from gowns to cut offs or tattered jeans.

And I had fun telling everyone why I was not more decked out - while eating the yummy desserts they served ..... mmmm....caramel and chocolate fondues :D

I do not want to do too many of my own heavy hitting ads here so if you do want more info on the fat loss product you can email me lynn_dorman at yahoo dot com or call me at 503.477.5550.

The company is embarking on its own Economic Stimulus Plan. Yes - even in these dire economic times, we call still all make money if we work if the thought of fat loss and/or making money appeals to you - please get in touch with me...I don't do hype..

Monday, January 19, 2009

Tainted Weight Loss Pills - Consumer Alert

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration [FDA] has updated an alert on tainted weight loss pills.
An FDA analysis found that the undeclared active pharmaceutical ingredients in some of these products include sibutramine (a controlled substance), rimonabant (a drug not approved for marketing in the United States), phenytoin (an anti-seizure medication), phenolphthalein (a solution used in chemical experiments and a suspected cancer causing agent) and bumetanide (a diuretic). Some of the amounts of active pharmaceutical ingredients far exceeded the FDA-recommended levels, putting consumers' health at risk...
The health risks posed by these products can be serious; for example, sibutramine, which was found in many of the products, can cause high blood pressure, seizures, tachycardia (rapid heart beat), palpitations, heart attack or stroke. This drug can also interact with other medications that patients may be taking and increase their risk of adverse drug events. The safety of sibutramine has also not been established in pregnant and lactating women, or in children younger than 16 years of age.

FDA page here:

I write much about our obesity problem but I also let you know about the safe products I take. Please be most careful if you are buying something - read the label has no words on it that sound like chemicals - mine sound like foods - because they are!

Make a healthy choice..


No matter where you live, your age, your political persuasion or who you voted for - tomorrow is a world changing Inauguration..

I used to live in Washington, D.C. and it's nice to see it shine in anticipation of tomorrow's major changing event...It's also nice to see ow the rest of the world is also anticipating the political shine of Washington, D.C. to come back.

As a community organizer Obama "gets it." He has dealt with elderly, poor, young and middle aged people and understands what is needed for and from all of us.

What changes can we who are older expect? For starters - some respect. We won't be seen as a group feeding at the public trough of social security; we will be seen as caring people who have a lot of wisdom to share; a lot of organizational know-how; a willingness to work/help and a lot of experience to pass along - after all most readers here are older than Barack Obama :D

So here's to a brighter future for the world!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Hormone Replacement Therapy: Does it Shrink Your Brain?

In short the answer is: if you are older it quite probably does shrinks the frontal lobes.

About those frontal lobes from Wikipedia:
The executive functions of the frontal lobes involve the ability to recognize future consequences resulting from current actions, to choose between good and bad actions (or better and best), override and suppress unacceptable social responses, and determine similarities and differences between things or events.

The frontal lobes also play an important part in retaining longer term memories which are not task-based. These are often memories associated with emotions derived from input from the brain's limbic system. The frontal lobe modifies those emotions to generally fit socially acceptable norms.

And from the study:
The National Institutes of Health study looked at women from the Women's Health Initiative Memory Study, which is a subset of the largest study of hormone replacement therapy. The study found that, overall, women taking the hormones had smaller frontal brain lobes than women who did not follow the treatment.

"Older women who took these [hormones] ... they had greater brain atrophy in these brain regions that are critical for the maintenance of memories," said Susan Resnick, a senior investigator at the National Institute on Aging, Laboratory of Personality and Cognition, and the study's primary author.

Full article

It may be that HRT accelerates what brain decline had already started and clearly more research is needed - BUT - this study, added to other not-so-good-stuff about the effects of HRT would make me think hard and long about HRT as an option.

I like using all of my frontal lobes and want them to stay as they are - [or even grow if that's possible]

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Obesity: The Latest Statistics [hint - they are bad]

This information is from 2005-2006. It takes a while to gather and analyze info so we can probably safely assume it's worse now in 2009!
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The number of obese American adults outweighs the number of those who are merely overweight, according to the latest statistics from the federal government.

Numbers posted by the National Center for Health Statistics show that more than 34 percent of Americans are obese, compared to 32.7 percent who are overweight. It said just under 6 percent are "extremely" obese.

"More than one-third of adults, or over 72 million people, were obese in 2005-2006, the NCHS said in its report.
In May, the CDC reported that 32 percent of U.S. children fit the definition of being overweight, 16 percent were obese and 11 percent were extremely obese.
Complete article

Please, for your own health sake, and that of your loved ones, if you are overweight or something about it NOW!

I market a product that works!
Go here and order it:

Browse all products and look for Optimal Weight and Fitness...then OsoLean[TM]

[Save money on your purchase by becoming a member or an associate]

Monday, January 05, 2009

Still Figuring Out What is and What is NOT Age Related

The last few weeks have been stressful. Major bad weather in the form of snow followed by a day where we got over 3.5 inches of rain! My friends back East have emailed and called as Portland OR has made the news back there. I assured them that as long as the Columbia River does not breach the levee - I am safe. But I do mention the stress levels.

Then late yesterday afternoon as I walked my dog, I saw snow sticking to his fur! I won't repeat here what I said :D. The snow kept coming and coming and sticking. I was ready to pack up and leave - me the New Englander...

It stopped snowing at some point during the night and the temperatures rose - but this morning I was still in a state of some sort of stress wondering what the weather would throw at me next and decided my stress was age related - that I am just getting too old to keep dealing with too much snow, too much rain and too much mud.

Then late this afternoon I ran into some neighbors - "What did you think when it snowed last night?" I said my comment was not fit for polite company and they laughed. "Ditto" they agreed. Then they added that this been a stressful period for them...Hmm.. Not much later I ran into another neighbor who said much the same things..

My poor brain had to reassess the age factor as all those people are at least 20 years younger than I am. It was an awakening that even I, who teaches and writes about aging, fell into an easy thought pattern that my stress level in dealing with this weather was age related. It was not...Not if people much younger than I were experiencing the same emotions and using the same foul language!

We live in a society where we read and hear so much about the perils of aging and we live with so many age related biases that we often forget to do our own reality checking.

So - for 2009 I now resolve to put "it's aged related" way way back in the schema that my mind wanders to when thinking about my own thoughts and feelings.

Just because we are older does not mean that everything we do or feel is related to a number!

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Osteoporosis medication warning and a happy 2009

Hope everyone here has a super duper life - in 2009 and beyond.

Hate starting the year with a warning - but as many readers are women who might be taking pills for osteoporosis you need to read this because
esophageal cancer has been linked to osteoporosis drugs.

Please check into safer solutions for maintaining bone density...