Monday, May 25, 2009

10 Cooking Tips For Arthritis Sufferers shares 10 cooking tips for people with Arthritis:

1. Use ergonomic, lightweight cooking tools with easy grips and non-slip handles

2. Use pots or pans with two handles that distribute the weight more evenly between both your hands and wrists

3. Use a food processor to chop, cut and slice but be sure you are able to change the blades easily and remove the bowl and lid without strain.  Consider mini processors too.

4. Use better cooking tools like the 2-handled rocker knife.

5. Pull up a stool and give your arthritis a rest.

6. Think "crockpot."  In less time you can make one-pot nutritious meals.

7. Soup makes people feel better so have them available whenever you aren't up to making it fresh.

8. Make extra food and plan for leftovers.  Double your recipe and freeze for another day.

9. Get food storage containers that are both easy to open and easy to stack.

10. Make sure your kitchen shelves are easily accessible; pullout shelves are great.  Put the most used items lower.  Car-man added shelves in my kitchen (we store no more than a service for 6-8 on any one shelf--the rest goes on higher shelves).

For more of cooking, check out my website.  

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Rental Cars For Less $$$

1. Because higher fees and taxes are charged at airports, it is often cheaper to take a shuttle into a city and rent your car there.

2.Call the local rental agency directly.  You can negotiate the cost better with people who know their car inventory.

3. Use your digital camera or phone (with date and time activated, if possible) to show the dings and dents to the rental agent prior to your use (get his/her full name).

4. Know the refuel policy so you can decide which is cheaper--paying upfront or refueling it yourself.

5. Saturday is generally the cheapest day to rent for one day.

6. Watch rental prices (they can fluctuate many times during the same day!!).  Even though you may have a reservation, you may be able to get an even lower price. Check prices online and if they are lower, speak to the local rental agent.  

Find out if you are too old to rent a car and how to prepare for car trips at this website. 

Thursday, May 21, 2009

U.S. Government On View: Videos, Facebook & Twitter Hand Out Information

According to Director of New Media Macon Phillips, the U.S. Government has launched the official U.S. Government Channel on You Tube which features more than 200 videos from 25 agencies.  In addition, in its effort to be open and transparent the administration now has links also on Facebook and on Twitter so you can find out what the government is doing right now. 

On the first page of the Government's Twitter page, I can locate a safety guide on barbecuing this Memorial Day weekend or I can learn how to protect myself from identity theft.  I can visit a listed local farmers market, find a job, check on the status of a tax refund, view what astronaut Mike Massimino is tweeting from the space shuttle Atlantis, get a free annual credit report from the only government-authorized source or send a message to thank our troops.

Get a direct line to and view a behind-the-scenes administration on  Watch events as they happen!

Now you can use a variety of media devices to discover how you can volunteer, apply for benefits or find jobs.   Tap into videos about topics such as public safety, money and taxes, science and technology, and travel and recreation. 

Take advantage of this wealth of information. 

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

A Must-Have Respite Care Website

Get the help when you need it.

Respite is a service in which temporary care is provided for an adult with disabilities or with chronic or terminal illnesses.  It can occur in or out of the home for any length of time, depending on the needs of the family and available resources.  

Some states require licensing for respite providers so be vigilante about doing background and qualification checks.  Don't assume that companies or agencies, even, have done them.  Here is a quick checklist to use when considering a provider:

1. Telephone screening and interview
2. Ask for references and check them, especially criminal background
3. Conduct a personal interview
4. Evaluate costs and financing
5. Write a contract that provides specific details

Find and keep good respite providers because you need a break!

You can easily search the National Respite Locator Service simply by specifying your state or province, age of the person required care and the kind of care needed.  For instance, you may check up to 3 of the following conditions:  dementia, chronic illness or stroke, frailty, hearing or visual impairments, physical disabilities, etc.

Also, you may want to take advantage of the National Adult Day Service Association's Directory.

Genworth's 2009 Cost of (Long-Term) Care lets you compare costs in your state or region with other areas.

Should you want even more information,  see  

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Be Aware of Arthritis Treatment Options

May is also National Arthritis Awareness Month.  

Most forms of rheumatic diseases cannot be cured.  However, many treatments can reduce pain and stiffness and improve ability to function.  

Brigham and Women's Hospital, a teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School, has provided a guide to making good decisions about arthritis treatment.  

The guide gives concrete suggestions on how to ask good questions and explains why most people find it difficult to ask questions.  In addition, a worksheet is provided that allows patients and their families to evaluate treatment options.  

Brigham and Women's Hospital is a comprehensive center, combining activities in rheumatic disease clinical care, education, training and research as an "integrated series of successful cutting-edge programs."  The professionals in comprehensive arthritis care work closely with colleagues in orthopedics, radiology, physical therapy, neurology, podiatry, dermatology, and pain management.  

It's a great resource whether or not you live in the Boston area.  

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Older Americans Month: Facts and Figures Just Released

May is Older (65+) Americans Month and the Census Bureau has provided us with statistics about this significant group:

As of July 1, 2007, this age group accounted for 13% of the total population (37.9 million).

By 2050 it will make up 20% of the total population.

The 2007 median income level for 65+ was $28,305.  9.7% are poor.  

5.8 million (15%) people 65 and older were still working. 

65% of people 65 and older lived with relatives.

80% of  those 65+ owned their homes compared to 42% of those younger than 35.

For every 100 women over 65, there were 73 men.  

There were more people over 65 living in California than any other state but Florida's percentage of population over 65 was 17% followed by West Virginia at 15.5% and Pennsylvania at 15.2%. 

Senior Heroes: Valle Verde Houses Evacuees From Jesusita Fire

According to Santa Barbara News Press staff writer, Bill McMorris, the senior retirement community of Wood Glen Hall on Foothill Road experienced one of the most urgent, yet collected evacuation efforts of Tuesday's exodus from the area.    Santa Barbara's Jesusita Fire put them in jeopardy and another local retirement community Valle Verde sprung into action.  

Within 3 hours the more than 50 retired individuals, some with serious medical conditions, were safely transported and housed.  

Bravo, residents and staff at Valle Verde, for readily extending a helping hand. You're a retirement community with precision, courage and heart!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Why Some People Move to Retirement Communities In Warmer Climates

You, too, can be eligible for retirement communities--providing you are at least 55.  Carol Fena suggests why you should consider moving into one:

1. Your neighbors:  Retirement communities have rules and restrictions that protect you from barking dogs, loud music, and unkempt property.

2. Home maintenance: In a retirement community you may not have to be concerned with the constant upkeep of your home nor do you need to worry if you leave it unattended for lengthy periods of time.

3. Climate:  Older people find colder weather a deterrent to going out.  Warmer climates make exercise and fitness easier.

4. Health: Not having to cope with traffic, getting cleaner air and water, and being closer to medical facilities increase the likelihood of more pleasant later years.

5. Family: Children worry less when parents are able to easily elicit help and assistance.  

6. Social life: The activities that they never had the time for are now abundant and welcoming. 

Friday, May 1, 2009

Clothes for Mature Women: How Boomer Women Are Adjusting to the Recession

Carol Orsborn at wrote about the ways upscale boomer women have reacted in the marketplace to the economic meltdown.

She reported that even though these women have "always been discerning and demanding value shoppers even in the best of times," they are exhibiting even more creativity and resourcefulness.  

Mix and match is in.  So is spending less on something like a t-shirt but indulging in something likely to last more than one season--like jeans.   Many are shopping online not only for the convenience but also for price-comparisons.

Out-of-work boomer women have figured out ways to get exactly what they want at a price they can afford.  They're convinced that they need to keep their career wardrobe fresh for when they re-enter the workforce.  But their time off has enabled them to go from store to store or search online or hit the resale, thrift shops and garage sales.