Monday, August 18, 2014

Six + One: Things Modern Church Leaders Should Know About Senior Citizens

  1.  A “wall of sound” during congregational singing renders a person with significant hearing loss unable to find the appropriate pitch so he/she can be involved in singing.
  2. Things projected on screens sometimes cause problems for those with vision loss. If print is too small, contrast is poor, or videos are of poor quality, seniors, by default, become non-participants.
  3. When instrumentalists play loudly, older congregants can’t understand the words of choir numbers.
  4. Though aging, seniors still have the awareness to recognize when the time signatures of their favorite hymns are changed so they can be sung at a “snail’s pace.”
  5. Negative effects on seniors when standing for long periods of time include aching joints, feeling faint or weak, and swollen feet. 
  6. Older congregants feel conspicuous if they are sitting while others stand.
+ 1. Senior church members need assurance that there is no substance to the rumor that our time has come to be set adrift on ice floes.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Once I Wondered . . .

“I wandered lonely as a cloud …” Oops, wrong poem.

When I was younger, I wondered about a lot of things. Now I know some of the answers.


Older women put lots of blush on their cheeks because they can no longer see how much they’ve applied.

Older women don’t pluck out most of their eyebrows so they can draw them on with eyebrow pencils. Their eyebrows disappear as they age.

Older women add weight because cutting calories by 20% and totally eliminating empty calories is close to impossible.

Older people squint at pages of print because they think that doing so will make the print larger.

Older people cup their hands behind their ears because this action redirects sounds into their ears (and also blocks out surrounding noises).

And I Still Learn

I'm learning that most women, including those in my age group, desire to: 1) appear younger (around $60 billion spent world-wide each year for anti-aging and skin care products) 2) be thinner (about $40 billion spent in America each year on diet products and weight loss programs), and 3) have healthier bodies (approximately $1.5 billion dollars spent on supplements and vitamins each year in America and several billion on fitness centers and exercise equipment).

And I Try

Okay, I’m guilty of #1 and #3. I purchase beauty products, vitamins, and supplements (but not equipment). As for #2, my success with controlling portion sizes and limiting empty calories is situation dependent. I estimate a 70% (maybe less) success rate.

So, since I can’t make myself younger, I wrote some reminders that are based on years of people-watching, mostly in airports and shopping centers.

Notes to Old Self

  • Remember Edith Head's advice: "If it's not pretty, don't show it."
  • Keep hair cut above shoulders
  • Use hair-removal cream on face

  • Color hair inky-black
  • Use bright right red lipstick
  • Apply excessive or greasy foundation
  • Use glitter eye make-up
  • Wear wide belts (with the exception of a seat belt)
  • Wear “plastered-on” pants or short skirts
  • Show cleavage
  • Use cologne in excess 

Remember When Shopping
  • Current fashions are created for the young
  • Older arms do flap
  • Older thighs are fat
  • Spider veins are visible

Now maybe I can find a supplement that will help me remember my notes.

From The Lady Ingenue - Labeled, "Vampire Inspired"

Monday, August 4, 2014

Making Memories

Grandson, Jacob Walker, and his wife Nicole came to visit us July 20 - 22. The same day they left, we traveled to Michigan to visit our daughter and son-in-law, Joanne and Michael Mruzek. While in Michigan we enjoyed:
  • a great day at Greenfield Village.
  • a tour of Jo and Michael’s “home-in-progress.”
  • gourmet meals cooked by Jo and Michael.
  • time with Grandson, Kyle Donovan, and his wife Kristi.
  • time with Granddaughter, Megan Fuller.
  • holding and playing with Great-Grandchildren, Sophia & Greyson Fuller and Mackenzie Donovan.
  • shopping in historic Tecumseh, MI.
  • a craft fair in Ann Arbor, MI.
  • Sunday worship at St. Andrew Church in Saline, MI.

On July 28, we motored to Chicago where we visited with Daughter-in-Law, Nancy Powers, and Granddaughter, Katy Powers. While in Chicago we:
  • had a delicious lunch at the Salvation Army Harbor Light Center.
  • went to the site of the new Salvation Army Freedom Center.
  • enjoyed delicious cherry pie cupcakes at a downtown bakery.
  • got a new recipe for “Hoosier Pie.” 

Late that afternoon we traveled to Bourbonnais, IL, to see our son, Merrill Powers, who was teaching a one-week class at ONU. While in Bourbonnais we:
  • toured the ONU Campus.
  • talked with a young man who is on the Chicago Bears staff.
  • saw where the Bears train (no Bear sightings, though).
  • enjoyed dinner at a restaurant of Merrill’s choice.

On July 29th we arrived home. Tired, but happy!

Sunday, July 27, 2014

The Price of Tea

My writing was done and I was ready to post it to my blog. Then I reread what I had written and a question my dad asked often while I was growing up popped into my head. “What does that have to do with the price of tea in China?”

Dad asked this question when he felt something I had said was of no significance with relationship to a conversation or situation. In other words, “That’s stupid!” (But he never would have said that.)

This experience set me to thinking about the many things I learned from Dad, some of which he taught using sayings and proverbs.

Just a few of the sayings I heard over the years:
“People who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.”
“Easy come, easy go.”
“Nothing ventured, nothing gained.”
“If you make your bed, you must lie in it.”
“Actions speak louder than words.”
“Birds of a feather flock together.”
“Don’t cry over spilled milk.”
“Haste makes waste.”
“Money doesn’t grow on trees.”
“There’s more than one way to skin a cat.”
“You reap what you sow.”

So that’s it for this week. I’ll edit the other writing and post it later.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Traveling Again

For nine years I was privileged to live in the beautiful state of Michigan. This week I will return there again to visit our daughter, Joanne, and son-in-law, Michael.

I sometimes wonder why we moved away from Michigan. I can't be sure, but it might have happened during a brain vacation. If there had been Internet back then, we would no doubt have used Google to locate Missouri information. As it happened, we engaged in discovery learning.

Subsequent to our move, we discovered that Missouri has a humid continental climate with cold winters and long, hot summers. According to legend, the Sioux Indians, because of the size of the Mighty Missouri River, called the area, land of the big canoe. Upon arrival, I named it, land of the no neighbors. In this climate, UFO sightings may be of about the same frequency as are neighbor sightings.

Cold weather usually arrives in Missouri in October, after which people stay inside to keep warm. Then, following a limited number of lovely spring days (maybe three or four), air conditioners come on and people hole up inside to keep coolSometimes, a neighbor’s head can be seen through the window of a beautiful vehicle and, occasionally, a complete neighbor is seen as he or she runs out a door to toss something on a grill.

It was also hot and cold in our Southern Michigan space. However, people participated in outdoor activities, both summer and winter. There, we saw neighbors. I jogged, walked to the library, read books on the patio, cooked on the grill, entertained guests for outdoor meals and parties, talked to neighbors over the back fence, worked in my flower garden, went on picnics, and spent days at the zoo. All of these things were done without experiencing heat exhaustion or feeling numb from cold.

Now we live just over the Missouri line in Kansas. Different address. Missouri climate.

Get ready, Southern Michigan, here I come!

~ Sign picture from Wikipedia