Movie Review: Land Ho!

url Movie Review: Land Ho!I’m jaded when it comes to movies.  Throughout an entire show, I’m waiting for something to go wrong, or a twist in the plot I never saw coming.  A movie can be rolling right along with a feel-good story line, everything is hunky-dory and then- BAM!  Someone cheats, dies suddenly or the aliens descend to take over the planet.  So, I don’t watch many movies, except for the 8-10 year old boy genre that my kids like.

So, I take great pleasure in sharing the movie review for “Land Ho!”, directed by Aaron Katz and Martha Stephens.  It is one of the best “grown-up” movies I have seen in quite a while.  Set in picturesque Iceland, former 60 year old brothers-in-law Mitch (Earl Lynn Nelson) and Colin (Paul Eenhoorn) set off on a journey to explore new frontiers and reconnect to their youth (and each other).  Mitch is a loud and unabashedly female-approving older man.  Colin is a reserved and soft spoken Australian gentleman who is more interested in a person’s intelligence than her assets.  The audience is privy to intimate conversations about aging, marriage, divorce, kids, and of course, women.  I felt like I was sitting at the kitchen table with my grandfathers, getting a fly-on-the-wall view of things they would say if I were not around.

I won’t tell you how it ends, but I’ll let you in on a secret, I was smiling the whole time. And giggling and laughing out loud. And sometimes embarrassed to be hearing such intimate thoughts from two older men I had come to love in a grand-daughterly sort of way.

The Icelandic setting is gorgeous- filled with ocean cliffs, geysers, and natural hot springs, I’m ready to purchase a plane ticket.  The film is able to relate to audiences from mid-20’s to the golden years with its honest insight and celebration of the two.  There is even a dance club scene with glow sticks for the truly young at heart.  The film is set to be released August 1, 2014 in major cities and I give it two “Senior List Thumbs” up.

Best Beach Towns In America For Retirement

Looking forward to retiring in the same community you slaved away in for 40+ years?  If not, you may be dreaming of life in a cozy beach community where the idea of fresh air, fresh fish, and fresh adventures await!  If that’s the case, here’s a list of the best beach towns in America for retirement.  Enjoy your golden active years near the many relaxing beach communities we have right here in our own backyard.

Best Beach Towns In America For Retirement

#1 Manzanita (Oregon)Manzanita1 Best Beach Towns In America For Retirement

This sleepy little community boasts a wonderful mix of full timers and part time residents.  With 7 miles of sandy beaches, Manzanita offers lots of room to run, walk, surf, or chill out.  The Oregon Coast Visitors Association maintains that “Manzanita possesses the third most photographed scenery in Oregon”.  Add in a local golf course, and a few nice restaurants/pubs and now you’ve got a full plate!  Located just West of Portland (and south of Cannon Beach) Manzanita has less than 1,000 full-time residence and at the time of the 2010 census just 315 households.  If you’re looking for a simple living this qualifies as one of the best beach towns in America for retirement.  Median age in the city is 59.9 years young.  –photos courtesy of jamesonf via Flickr

Manzanita Oregon Best Beach Towns In America For Retirement

 #2 Santa Cruz (California)

santa cruz boardwalk Best Beach Towns In America For Retirement

Santa Cruz is a throw back town.  Having just spent our spring break there this year, we loved every minute of this surfer’s paradise.  Looking for something a little laid back and dog friendly?  You just found it.  Add in a mix of fine dining, and local eateries (where the food is fresh and affordable), you won’t go home hungry.  2011 census pegged Santa Cruz at just over 60,000 residence with 32.1% of the population between the ages of 45 and older.  Median age in Santa Cruz is 29.9 (wikipedia).  Beach dwelling, wine tasting, museums, and a university add to the cultural appeal of Santa Cruz, and it’s a sure draw for those looking for an active retirement.  –photos courtesy of Thomas Hawk & Hudheer G via Flickr

santa cruz beach Best Beach Towns In America For Retirement

#3 Beaufort (South Carolina)

Beaufort dock Best Beach Towns In America For Retirement

Beaufort SC was named Coastal Living Magazine’s Happiest Seaside Town in 2013.  This alone should qualify it as one of the best beach towns in America for retirement!  Beaufort is located on Port Royal Island, in the heart of the Sea Islands.  Water, history and culture surround this area, and it’s about as friendly a town as you’ll ever come across.  “Chartered in 1711, it is the second-oldest city in South Carolina, behind Charleston. The city’s population was 12,361 in the 2010 census.  It is a primary city within the Hilton Head Island-Bluffton-Beaufort Metropolitan Statistical Area.” (Wikipedia)  As of the 2010 census there were just over 12,000 people residing in the city of Beaufort.  A full 30% of the people in Beaufort SC are over the age of 45.  –photos courtesy of scarter392 & Henry de Saussure Copeland via Flickr

beaufort city Best Beach Towns In America For Retirement

#4 Friday Harbor (San Juan Island WA)

Friday Harbor Best Beach Towns In America For Retirement

Friday Harbor is a gorgeous little island community available only by ferry service (or float plane).  With just over 2,000 residents, it’s not easy to get lost around Friday Harbor.  Census data notes that 44.8% of the city is 45 years old or older.  Lots of things to do on San Juan Island including hiking, biking, fishing, walking, kayaking and sampling the many local eateries and coffee shops around town.  Summertime brings in quite a number of tourists, but everyone is interested in fresh air and the active outdoor culture that abounds here.  –photos courtesy of Chase N. & Mike Kelley via Flickr

friday harbor ferry Best Beach Towns In America For Retirement

#5 Steilacoom (Washington)

Steilacoom sunset Best Beach Towns In America For Retirement

Located 45 miles SW of Seattle, Steilacoom (pronounced “still-a-come”)seems to move in slow motion and that’s just how the 6,000 or so full-time locals love it.  The 4th of July celebration brings in over 18,000 visitors, and all come for good eats, good conversation, and fireworks over Sunnyside Beach.  This Puget Sound community boasts a median age of 45.4 (as of the 2010 census) and 39.3% of folks are 45 years of age or older.  –photos courtesy of L-M-E & camknows via Flickr

Steilacoom festival Best Beach Towns In America For Retirement

Report: Prescription Drugs In Water Supply

Father at lake Report: Prescription Drugs In Water SupplyThe Huffington Post published an article today highlighting a study by the School of Freshwater Sciences (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee).  That study aptly titled “Pharmaceuticals and personal care products found in the Great Lakes above concentrations of environmental concern” reported that PPCP’s (pharmaceutical and personal care products) were evident in much higher concentrations than previously thought. Are reports of prescription drugs in water supply an overreach? Maybe… but maybe not.

In the Huff Post article the authors report that “The environmental risk of PPCPs in large lake systems, such as the Great Lakes, has been questioned due to high dilution; however, the concentrations found in this study, and their corresponding risk quotient, indicate a significant threat by PPCPs to the health of the Great Lakes, particularly near shore organisms.”

Interesting to note that the most commonly detected PPCPs in Lake Michigan were metformin, caffeine, sulfamethoxazole, and triclosan.  The list of other PPCP’s found in the Great Lakes contained many additional pharmaceutical type medications like Acetaminophen, Codeine and Ciprofloxacin.  What can you do today?  Learn how to properly dispose of expired medications in the home.  Think before you flush these drugs down the toilet.  The damage we’re doing is only going to get worse if we don’t take action today.

This study should cause concern AND create awareness for environmental issues that may result from exposure to these chemicals in our water and/or sediment.  It’s high time we start talking about measures to protect our planet folks, it’s the only one we have!

Photo: freedigitalphotos.net

Postcards From The Edge: September 30 1909

Today marks the first in a series we’re publishing called “Postcards From The Edge“.  These postcards are a from a collection which has been cared for by my in-laws up in Western Montana.  Rather than keep these hidden away in a box, we thought it would be fun to share some of these with our community members here on The Senior List.  The postcards are circa early 1900’s and are written by Francis Clark (1857-1950), my husband’s great grandfather. Frank was a railroad conductor and traveled around the country manning routes for The Northern Pacific Railroad.

Postcards were Frank’s primary means of communication back to his family back in Tekoa Washington, Kellogg Idaho, and Spokane Washington.  They are addressed to several members of his immediate (and extended) family including his children.  The postcards a turn-of-the-century “time machine”, and take us back to a time time in history when our country was changing ever so rapidly.

Keep in mind back then there were few telephones and very limited communication methods other than by post.  I hope you enjoy the series.  These postcards are very personal, and we’re happy to share them with you.  **Note the 1 cent stamps… The actual postmark itself… The addresses on the cards (just a name and city in some cases)… and of course the story that each postcard reveals.

mt hood postcard ft2 Postcards From The Edge: September 30 1909

mt hood postcard back2 Postcards From The Edge: September 30 1909

In this postcard featuring Mt. Hood (Oregon) Frank writes a personal note to his son Kenneth (my husbands grandfather):

Well Kenneth do you miss me? Very much wish you were here – We would have a fine time seeing the city and going to shows – 9 am enjoying myself very much but it will be nice to be home again.  Be a good boy – love to mama and sister – Love Daddy.” — Frank Clark to his son Kenneth — September 30th, 1909

Best List Of Senior Discounts 2013

money pan 300x239 Best List Of Senior Discounts 2013One of our friends on The Senior List Facebook Page was inquiring as to the best listing of senior discounts floating around out there, so we did a little research.  We did come across a nice list put together by Judy Calvaneso of Judy’s Pair-A-Dice Tours (Williamsville, NY).  Originally posted on the Pair-A-Dice Facebook page, we thought it was worthwhile passing along.  (Special thanks to Judy for putting this list together.)

Let us know if you have other favorite lists featuring senior discounts below in the comments area.  One thing that Judy notes on her list is that “you must ask for your discount”, so don’t be afraid to say “I understand you have a senior discount available, can we take advantage of that today?”  Hey why not… You earned it!

If you know of other discounts out there (or understand one listed to be discontinued below) please let us know in the comments section.

Here is Judy’s list with commentary:

Keep this list – – – and Send a copy to your senior friends and relatives.Facebook Button 150x150 Best List Of Senior Discounts 2013

“As I was waiting in line behind an older gentleman at Wendy’s recently, I heard him ask for his senior discount. The girl at the register apologized and charged him less. When I asked the man what the discount was, he told
me that seniors over age 55 gets 10% off everything on the menu, every day.

Being of ‘that’ age myself, I figured I might as well ask for the discount too.

This incident prompted me to do some research, and I came across a list of restaurants, supermarkets, department stores, travel deals and other types of offers giving various discounts with different age requirements. I was actually surprised to see how many there are and how some of them start at the young age of 50.

This list may not only be useful for you, but for your friends and family, too.  YOU must ASK for your discount!” — Judy Calvaneso

BEST RESTAURANT DISCOUNTS FOR SENIORS:

Applebee’s: 15% off with Golden Apple Card (60+)
Arby’s: 10% off (55+)
Ben & Jerry’s: 10% off (60+)
Bennigan’s: discount varies by location (60+)
Bob’s Big Boy: discount varies by location (60+)
Boston Market: 10% off (65+)
Burger King: 10% off (60+)
Chick-Fil-A: 10% off or free small drink or coffee (55+)
Chili’s: 10% off (55+)
CiCi’s Pizza: 10% off (60+)
Denny’s: 10% off, 20% off for AARP members (55+)
Dunkin’ Donuts: See updated information in “Comments” section
Einstein’s Bagels: 10% off baker’s dozen of bagels (60+)
Fuddrucker’s: 10% off any senior platter (55+)
Gatti’s Pizza: 10% off (60+)
Golden Corral: 10% off (60+)
Hardee’s: $0.33 beverages everyday (65+)
IHOP: 10% off (55+)
Jack in the Box: up to 20% off (55+)
KFC: free small drink with any meal (55+)
Krispy Kreme: 10% off (50+)
Long John Silver’s: various discounts at locations (55+)
McDonald’s: discounts on coffee everyday (55+)
Mrs. Fields: 10% off at participating locations (60+)
Shoney’s: 10% off Sonic: 10% off or free beverage (60+)
Steak ‘n Shake: 10% off every Monday & Tuesday (50+)
Subway: 10% off (60+)
Sweet Tomatoes: 10% off (62+)
Taco Bell: 5% off; free beverages for seniors (65+)
TCBY: 10% off (55+)
Tea Room Cafe: 10% off (50+)
Village Inn: 10% off (60+)
Waffle House: 10% off every Monday (60+)
Wendy’s: 10% off (55+)
White Castle: 10% off (62+)

BEST RETAIL & APPAREL DISCOUNTS FOR SENIORS:

Banana Republic: 10% off (50+)
Bealls: 20% off first Tuesday of each month (50+)
Belk’s: 15% off first Tuesday of every month (55+)
Big Lots: 10% off Big Lots does not offer a senior discount
Bon-Ton Department Stores: 15% off on senior discount days (55+)
C.J. Banks: 10% off every Wednesday (60+)
Clarks: 10% off (62+)
Dress Barn: 10% off (55+)
Goodwill: 10% off one day a week (date varies by location)
Hallmark: 10% off one day a week (date varies by location)
Kmart: 20% off (50+) No longer Available (see below)
Kohl’s: 15% off (60+)
Modell’s Sporting Goods: 10% off
Rite Aid: 10% off on Tuesdays & 10% off prescriptions
Ross Stores: 10% off every Tuesday (55+)
The Salvation Army Thrift Stores: up to 50% off (55+)
Stein Mart: 20% off red dot/clearance items first Monday of every month (55+)

BEST TRAVEL DISCOUNTS FOR SENIORS:

Airline Discounts for Seniors:

American Airlines: various discounts for 65 and up (call before booking for discount)
Continental Airlines: no initiation fee for Continental Presidents Club & special fares for select destinations
Southwest Airlines: various discounts for ages 65 and up (call before booking for discount)
United Airlines: various discounts for ages 65 and up (call before booking for discount)
U.S. Airways: various discounts for ages 65 and up (call before booking for discount)

Car Rental Discounts for Seniors:

Alamo Car Rental: up to 25% off for AARP members
Avis: up to 25% off for AARP members Best Western: 10% off (55+)
Budget Rental Cars: 10% off; up to 20% off for AARP members (50+)
Dollar Rent-A-Car: 10% off (50+)
Enterprise Rent-A-Car: 5% off for AARP members
Hertz: up to 25% off for AARP members Holiday Inn: 10%-30% off depending on location (62+)
National Rent-A-Car: up to 30% off for AARP members

BEST ACTIVITIES & ENTERTAINMENT DISCOUNTS FOR SENIORS:

AMC Theaters: up to 30% off (55+)
Bally Total Fitness: up to $100 off memberships (62+)
U.S. National Parks: $10 lifetime pass; 50% off additional services including camping (62+)
Regal Cinemas: 30% off Ripley’s Believe it or Not: @ off one-day ticket (55+)
SeaWorld Orlando, FL: $3 off one-day tickets (50+)

BEST CELLPHONE DISCOUNTS FOR SENIORS:

AT&T: Special Senior Nation 200 Plan $29.99/month (65+)
Jitterbug: $10/month cell phone service (50+)
Verizon Wireless: Verizon Nationwide 65 Plus Plan $29.99/month (65+).

MISCELLANEOUS DISCOUNTS FOR SENIORS:

Great Clips: $3 off hair cuts (60+)
Super Cuts: $2 off haircuts (60+)

Photo: freedigitalphotos.net

Pre-Retirement: Where To Move Before You Retire

canstockphoto1606022 300x200 Pre Retirement: Where To Move Before You RetireBefore you retire, you might want to think about a strategy that many boomers are considering and implementing right now.  That strategy is called pre-retirement.  An interesting article in Forbes recently caught my eye.  It was entitled “The Best Cities For Boomers To Pre-Retire“.  Forbes’ notion was that “If retirement is closing in, you might want to move to an alluring metropolitan area where you can work full-time today and then switch to part-time down the road“.  Think of it as a test drive for permanent retirement…

My spellchecker doesn’t recognize the word pre-retirement, and maybe you don’t either.  Our definition of pre-retirement is a strategy of setting yourself up for your later years.  It involves planning and analyzing each of the variables that allow you to live (the life you want to live) in retirement.  Things like; What kind of car do you drive (or want to drive)?  How often can you afford to dine out?  And, where should you live when you retire?

Forbes cited a recent posting from Nerdwallet.com that lists their top 10 “Best Places For Baby Boomers“.  It was based on some pretty smart criteria.  Things like affordability (based on cost of living index), healthcare accessibility, the ability to lead an active social life, and public transportation services.  Here are their top 10 places for baby boomers:

  1. Pittsburgh, PA
  2. Cleveland-Elyria-Mentor, Ohio
  3. Buffalo-Niagara Falls, N.Y.
  4. Baltimore-Towson, MD
  5. Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach, FL
  6. Louisville/Jefferson County, KY
  7. Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA
  8. St. Louis, MO
  9. Milwaukee-Waukesha-West Allis, WI
  10. Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA

Make sure to visit Nerdwallet to understand their criteria, and for further information on their top destination cities for boomers.

Safety Tips For Your Cruise

Costa Concordia Safety Tips For Your CruiseBeau Prichard (from USA Today.com) published a list of safety tips for beginners that are preparing for an upcoming cruise.  In the wake of the overturned Costa Concordia, and the crap-covered Carnival Triumph it’s important to pay closer attention to emergency measures AND general safety precautions when getting ready for your “vacation aboard”.  Remember these safety tips for your cruise and have smoother sailing on your next vacation!

Here are Beau’s 7 safety steps for cruising:

  1. Pay close attention to your safety briefing” – We’ve reached a point when you can’t take anything for granted anymore.  You are responsible for you (and your family)… Pay close attention!
  2. Take care of your health” – Beau warns against using public restrooms, but if you wash your hands and practice good hygiene protocols this shouldn’t be a problem.  We recommend that you try to get some exercise in during your cruise.  At least an hour per day should keep you feeling more alert, help with your sleep, and allow you guilt-free indulging.
  3. Wear appropriate shoes” – This one is obvious, but worth noting.  Ladies don’t need to haul around 4 pairs of high-heals.  Get comfortable, and find yourself a quality pair of sandals, and be sure to bring some tennis shoes (or some quality walking/running shoes).
  4. Leave valuables at home” – Love this one… and frankly, it’s a good rule-of-thumb for any travel (abroad or otherwise).  Unless you feel the need to show off (and it’s OK if you do) leave the jewels at home in the safe.  Thieves and schemers love to prey on the naive and on the wealthy.  When they spot both (in one person) they know they’ve hit the mother-load!  IF you can afford to lose it, no big deal… but if you can’t, better safe than sorry.  Just leave it at home.
  5. Keep your money out of sight” – See above (same applies).
  6. Do not travel alone” – There is safety in numbers.  Enough said.
  7. Drink in moderation” – This is a tough one, because some folks want to cut loose when on a cruise.  Once you’ve reached the point where you can’t drink responsibly you’re at your limit, and it’s best to back off.

There are so many more to mention that we’ll be doing more of these lists in the future.  (Here’s a preview… “Make sure you use that sunscreen!”)  If you have tips you’d like to share, please do so in the comments below.

Happy cruising-

Tim

Top 10 Pet Peeves On Airplanes

Boeing1 Top 10 Pet Peeves On AirplanesOne of our co-founders travels a great deal for work.  In any given week he can be on the East Coast, West Coast, north or south… Some weeks his schedule is plain hard to keep track of!  One thing we get a kick-out-of are his stories of fellow passengers, and the things that frequent travelers deal with on a regular basis.  We asked Chris to give us his top 10 list of things NOT to do while traveling by air.  *Note- Some of these suggestions are from fellow passengers that Chris interacts with while he hops across the country… We hope you enjoy!

Top 10 Pet Peeves on Airplanes:

  1. Don’t take your shoes off-  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been on a plane and had a passenger beside me slide their shoes off because “ohhhh these dogs are barking”.  First, if “those” dogs are barking, I sure has heck don’t want see or hear them (let alone smell them).  This one is just plain disgusting (fellow travelers will back me up here) and it happens more often than you think.
  2. Don’t have more than 2 (alcoholic) drinks-  OK 1 drink I get… 2 if you’ve had a stressful day… Fine… But anything over 2 is a head-scratch-er for most of us sitting around you.  Also, after a few drinks you get too chatty and frankly, we could care less what your batting average was in high school, or how many pounds you gained after your first-born.
  3. If you’re going to chew gum, chew with your mouth closed-  Didn’t your mother teach you any manners?  This isn’t just younger kids mind you, but it can be full fledged corporate types.  Maybe it’s lower oxygen levels or the altitude, but for some reason passengers lose their mind  the minute they pass 10,000 feet.  None of us want to hear your gum snapping while you type on your overly-priced MacBook… (PS: You sound like a 16 year old girl.)
  4. Don’t Be A Loud-Talker-  OK, this one is a little less offensive depending on the nature of the conversation.  Frankly, it can be quite entertaining.  IF you don’t know if you’re a loud-talker (or not)… you might be one.  Most frequent travelers keep their voices down as a courtesy to those around them, but some folks just have a loud voices in general (even when they whisper).  Just make sure you know that you’re sharing your son’s sexual escapades with 6-10 of your closest seat mates when discussing “Nicky”…
  5. If you snore… Try not to fall asleep-  This one is a funny one for about 2 minutes, then it gets old real quick.  The last thing any of us wants to do is give mouth-to-mouth to the guy with sleep apnea in row 22… Once this nuisance starts, it’s tough to get it to stop.  A few loud coughs is what we try (maybe even a shoulder nudge) but after that it’s up to the (noise cancelling) headphones to do their job.  Yes that $300 I spent on those Bose headphones was worth it!
  6. Don’t blast your music-  Clearly some folks don’t care that they are causing themselves permanent hearing loss by blasting their iPods directly into their tympanic membrane.  I know you’re a big fan of Rick Astley… but trust me when I tell you, it sounds awful to the rest of us.  Please turn down the volume…
  7. If your carry-on is too big to fit in the overhead bin… Check it!  This one kills us frequent travelers.  I don’t know how some folks get past the first 2 gate keepers (security and the gate crew) but it happens all the time.  Someone gets to their seat only to find out their “carry-on” is stuffed so full it won’t fit in the overhead bin.  When this issue occurs it’s painful because the guilty party will try smashing it in there for at least 2 minutes while everyone waits in the aisle.  Finally, if they haven’t torn their bag, or broken the overhead latch, the bag has to make it’s way back to the front of the plane to be checked.  Ever driven the wrong way on a one way street?
  8. Don’t emphatically recline your seat without checking behind you- This is another one that happens too often.  If someone behind you has a laptop open and your seat suddenly lurches back, that laptop is at grave risk!  Not to mention when you recline, you’re almost laying in the other person’s lap.  If you must… look behind you and let the person know you’re coming back.  Then do it slowly.
  9. Don’t lather on the perfume (or cologne) we don’t care- You’re traveling on a plane with a hundred strangers that don’t care that you’re wearing Sex Panther cologne.  Leave it at home or in the bag… We really don’t want to taste it.
  10. Your kid isn’t Pele, don’t let him kick the seats-  For the record we love kids, and travel with them a lot.  One thing we don’t allow is kicking the back of the seats.  It’s so annoying for others, and we’ve seen folks come unglued because of it.  If you can’t keep your kids from leaving boot marks on the tray-table, request a bulkhead.
  11. (BONUS Pet Peeve) Lighten up… You were a kid once too!  One of our biggest pet peeves is the uptight traveler that immediately gives the traveling mom (with toddler) a dirty look, and then sighs deeply at every chance they get… Lighten up Francis!  Or better yet, lend a helping hand!

Well that’s it for now folks!  What are your top pet peeves while traveling?

MEMOIRE By Kate M. Gehrke

Arriving Ellis Island 400x270 300x202 MEMOIRE By Kate M. GehrkeKathe (Kate) Gehrke was my husband’s great grandmother.  In 1923 she left Northern Germany and came to America by boat with her husband Franz and 3 year old daughter (Magdalene).  Kate was only 23 at the time.  Like so many before her (and so many after) they arrived at Ellis Island in search of a better life.  At the time, inflation was rocking Germany following WWI.  After boarding the Mount Carroll she would wave goodbye to her parents and a sister… Never to see them again.  By the time Kate was able to return to Germany 50 years later, all had died.

Kate Gehrke loved The United States, and following WWII she wrote this heartfelt Ode To America titled: MEMOIRE.  We were told this tribute was framed and hung on a courthouse wall in Spokane Washington following her naturalization (to US citizenship) .  We’re not sure if it still hangs there today… In case it doesn’t, we’ll hang it here for you.

MEMOIRE
By: Kate M. Gehrke

I stood on the shore of the Baltic Sea
Watching its mighty waves,
And visited St. Petersburg
In its Imperial Days.

From the Rhein River steamboat I had a look
At the Lorelei and the Tower at Bingen.
The Bohemian Forest, I remember so well
With its gypsies melodiously singing.

But most of all I think about the crossing of the ocean
To a new world – I had always known -
But only by its name.
A world so different from the old,
And still so much the same.

 For here I met the people from Russia
And the Baltic Sea,
From Bohemia, the Rheinland
And from Saxony.

They talk about the good old days,
And sing their happy songs.
They disagree on many things,
And argue rights and wrongs.

But, let an enemy attack this country
Land or sea -
They proudly rise to its defense,
Regardless of nationality.

Shoulder to shoulder and man to man
Ready to give their all
To fight, to die, if it must be
As true Americans.

For those who died for you, for me,
To keep this country safe and free,
Wherever their eternal sleep,
We pray, the Lord
Their soul to keep.

us flag small MEMOIRE By Kate M. Gehrke

Kate Gehrke (born Kathe Marta Helene Dittmann)

1899 – 1971

Online Computer School for Seniors

computer1 Online Computer School for SeniorsA Computer School For Seniors

We have written about cell phones for seniors, and the best apps for seniors, but we may have gotten a little ahead of ourselves.  As hard as it is to imagine, there are still plenty of folks who are not yet comfortable with computers.  We are thrilled to help introduce to our readers a company that has been working  to help seniors become more computer savvy.

Online Computer School for Seniors

Computer School for Boomers & Seniors (CS4Seniors.com) is on a mission to help Grandma and Grandpa become more computer literate. “I have a grandson who knows more about computers at six than I did when I was fifty,” said Mimi Witcher, Founder of CS4Seniors. “My grandchildren are growing up with technology. They have computers, iPads, Smartphones and iPods. They text, surf and click all day long. We missed out on all that,” said Mimi. “But our generation needs to get with the program. We need to become computer savvy.” Computer School for Boomers & Seniors is a virtual campus with a mission to empower their students by providing encouragement, lifelong learning opportunities and new worlds to explore via the Internet. “I’m very serious when I say there is a need.  Just look at what is happening all around us,” said Mimi.

  • Perhaps no group of people was hurt more during the global economic “downturn” in 2009 than Boomers and Seniors.  Many can’t afford to retire and many were laid off and can’t find another job. According to the GAO, as of July nearly two million older workers, 6.2 %, were seeking a job.
  • When the GAO looked into senior unemployment, it found that employers assumed older workers would demand higher salaries, they would be uncomfortable reporting to younger bosses and they would lack computer skills.
  • AARP reports that older workers need to become more computer savvy just to apply for a job since more companies are requiring applicants to apply online.
  • South Carolina’s unemployment agency is yanking benefits from thousands of people who are not searching for work through the agency’s website as a way to verify they are looking for work as required. This is a double whammy for seniors without computer skills. They can’t apply for a job online and they can’t collect unemployment because they don’t know how to get online.
  • By March 2, 2013 all Social Security checks will be deposited electronically.
  • Recipients are encouraged to check on their benefits online. Michael J. Astrue, Commissioner of Social Security, announced last June that in less than two months’ time, one million people had gone online, created a My Social Security account and viewed their Social Security Statement.

Mimi taught seniors for eight years in the classroom in the Emeritus Program at Richland College in Dallas, TX. She went from taking classes…to teaching classes…to Teacher of the Year. Now she’s teaching Boomers and Seniors online from all over the world. “Why? Because having computer skills can connect you to your friends, family and the world while not having computer skills can disconnect you,”  encouraged Mimi. Computer School for Boomers & Seniors has the largest selection of online computer Lesson Plans created specifically for Boomers and Seniors.

A sample of topics and lessons plans include; Travel, Google Earth, Publisher, Excel, ClipArt, and even Pinterest!  The tuition is very reasonable at $79 per year or $39 for one semester (three months).  Find out more at http://www.cs4seniors.com.

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