Volume 22 | Number 4 | Winter 2009-2010 King County RSVP’s quarterly publication for people 55 & older
RSVP Knit-It-Alls: The gift
By Peter Langmaid
This year, the RSVP Knit- The group—all women, so they
It-Alls (KIA) program will can talk about the men—all live
distribute over 1,600 hand knit at Northhaven, a retirement
and crocheted hats, scarves, baby community “designed especially
blankets, afghans, sweaters and to meet the needs of people
mittens to needy men, women, older in age, but young in spirit.”
and children throughout King The first thing lifelong
County. crocheter Evelyn Leckron Caption: Northhaven Handcrafters: (L-R) Marine Galdon, Ingeborg
Though the KIA process showed me when I arrived to Bower, Nancy Evans, Evelyn Leckron, Margaret McGreevy, Betty Weed &
culminates in December, the sit in on one of their sessions Margery Olson (Photo by Peter Langmaid.)
knitting and crocheting work is was the wall where they proudly
Evans has seen people wearing courteous and helpful. And the
a year-round effort. One lively display their multiple RSVP
her work, and it makes her feel activities are endless. There are
and energetic group of volunteer Certificates of Appreciation.
wonderful. exercise classes every day, movies,
contributors is the Northhaven But the rewards they receive
Watching them work, I was special outings, food drives, foot
Handcrafters, who meet weekly go far beyond certificates. For
immediately impressed by how massage, acupuncture, birthday
to knit, crochet, chat, and gossip. Margaret McGreevy, the knitting
expert they all are at their craft. parties, game nights, educational
Together, they will produce over helps her overcome feelings of
No one seemed to be paying opportunities, and on and on.
300 pieces of brightly colored, worthlessness that sometimes
attention to their work, but the (The list was coming so fast I
imaginatively designed, and slip into her consciousness if
needles were clicking away like couldn’t write them all down.)
expertly crafted items this year. she doesn’t stay busy. Nancy
an old-fashioned typing pool. Nancy summarized Northhaven
Asked when they learned their by saying, “If you can’t find
Solid Ground Nonprofit Org. craft, Evelyn said she started something to do here, you don’t
RSVP (Retired & Senior Volunteer Program) U.S. Postage at age 3 or 4 by cutting up old want to do anything!”
1501 North 45th Street
PAID clothes and crocheting them into As the knitted and crocheted
Seattle, WA 98103-6708 Permit # 3057
rugs. Ingeborg Bower said her goods pile up, they are bagged
grandmother taught her, and and sent to the RSVP office
that they scavenged their yarn for volunteers Shirley White
by unraveling old sweaters and and Margaret Orazem to sort
knitting them into new ones. and tag. Shirley found her way
Nancy thought for a moment, to the KIA program in 1998
shrugged, and said, “since through a flyer at the Greenlake
forever.” Margaret also pointed library. She called the office
out that their work keeps their and said, “I can knit anything.”
fingers nimble and staves off Since joining the program she
arthritis. has knitted over 1,000 pairs of
For these women, the most mittens. Helping the homeless
important benefits of all are motivates her, and people who
the love of their craft and the are inspired by her work donate
Inside this Issue... feeling of ‘family’ that the group most of her yarn. Shirley knits
gives them. They find the work while watching TV and keeping
relaxing, creative, and intrinsically her hands busy helps ease
rewarding. Each member has her arthritis. Shirley recruited
Things we may not notice her own ideas about design and Margaret into the tagging and
color, but they all “put a lot of sorting, and Margaret’s reward is
l Warmth.......................................p. 1 love into what they’re making.” helping children. Margaret loves
Someone mentioned that they the positive atmosphere at RSVP
all get along and have fun, too. and enjoys seeing all the beautiful
This idea was punctuated by the items.
l Chickens?!....................................p. 2 statement, “If you can’t get along As the inventory builds and
[with the group], you can just the December distribution date
leave!” nears, RSVP work-study student
l Listening......................................p. 4 One recurring topic of Janae Detwiler contacts the 18
conversation was how lucky they agencies that receive the items
all feel to live at Northhaven. for their ‘wish’ lists. Janae then
l Beauty.........................................p. 6 They feel “treated with respect” matches requests to inventory.
by a staff that is always Continued on page 3
Page 2 King County RSVP’s Experience in Action!
really care about
Speaking Directly the mission of this
program and it
by Sonya Couch, RSVP Director shows. Olivia and
I are excited to get
back into the swing
Blessings of the season & of things and see
more of the RSVP
looking ahead staff and some of
you too! And since
I plan to bring
2009 has been a very eventful adoration of your child is what Olivia with me to
year, both professionally and gets you through the pain of work for the next
personally for me. The most childbirth and all the sleepless few months, her first Olivia Joy Couch (Photo by Caleb Couch)
exciting part of it however has nights that follow. So, I’ve been words just might be
the gloomy economic conditions.
been the arrival of our daughter, home enjoying this little bundle “RSVP”!
During hard times Americans
Olivia Joy. She was born on for the past three months and am As we look forward to the
really do step forward and help
September 17th with a full now transitioning back into work New Year there are many exciting
each other out. You are all proof
head of dark hair. I mention as we end the year. challenges ahead. Thank you
of this! We will need all of you
this because this seems to be Speaking of the past three to all of you who contributed
to continue your good work in
the feature that draws the most months, I’d like to take this financially to RSVP in 2009.
2010 as the need for your service
attention—strangers in the opportunity to thank Jen We will be putting your faith in
grows. And RSVP will be here
grocery store say, “My, look at Gahagan and Robin Knudson, the program to good use as we
to support you. Just call or write
all that hair!” And with all that our fabulous RSVP Program tackle the next year. I am happy
if you’d like some personalized
hair and her big eyes, I must say, Coordinators who covered for to say that we are ending the
service. Either myself, Robin,
she is the most beautiful child me while I was away on maternity year with more volunteers and
Jen, or Olivia will answer!
I’ve ever seen. Am I partial? leave. I’m continually amazed more hours than the previous
Happy Holidays from the
Absolutely. But that is the way at the quality and consistency year. This trend continues to be
staff at RSVP! l
that it goes, right? The complete of both of their work. They an encouragement to us despite
Happy New Year!
Alert: Wild chickens on the Burke-Gilman!
by Roger Urbaniak
During one of my hikes along the Burke Gilman Trail I heard These chickens are hearty breeds, surviving winters here outdoors.
a rumor from a passing jogger about wild chickens living and Two Guinea fowl recently joined Bothell’s panhandling chickens.
prospering along the trail. I found this tip to be intriguing and planned They, too, were aggressive feeders chasing away ducks from the
a late summer hike to begin near downtown Bothell where I was told breadcrumbs.
they resided. The sun was warm and inviting, so after satisfying my initial
After taking the SR-522 cutoff from I-405 to Bothell I found a curiosity, I continued my walk along this portion of the trail. I had
city-sponsored parking lot south of Bothell Landing near the Senior previously hiked or biked several sections of the Burke Gilman
Center on NE 180th. Next I followed a short path towards the Trail starting near Marymoor Park in Redmond. On my last trip I
Sammamish Slough where I spotted an old wooden had entertained myself by watching some college-
bridge and pedestrian walkway adjacent to the center. age athletes compete in an organized game of
After a quick stroll across the bridge and a left turn on Ultimate Frisbee at a playing field near the Chateau
the asphalt trail, I almost immediately began noticing Ste. Michelle Winery. Today I was looking for new
wild chickens. sights to join with my travels of yesterday. A few
Despite being armed with my rumor, I was still wild mallards effortlessly landed in the Sammamish
surprised by the scores of wild chickens feeding Slough near resident domestic water birds but quickly
openly along the trail. The bantam breed of chicken departed when hikers intruded into their comfort
closely resembled jungle fowl that I had seen in Kauai. zone. Later I spotted a mink frolicking, and then
My comparison was enforced when a few of the birds hunting, among some large boulders which had been
flew up to low tree branches as I had seen jungle fowl placed along the bank of the slough for erosion
do. control. This was exciting to me, as wild mink are rare
Each bird was also unique in its coloration as were in such an urban setting.
the jungle fowl. Some roosters were golden while Typical female bantam chickens Other features of this section of trail are the
others were stunningly colored similar to Chinese periodic exercise stations dotting the route. Each
ring-necked pheasants. Several hens were nearly all black, others little area has been designed with a different workout in mind.
were spotted and one a pure white. No two birds seemed to be the Informative instructive signs detail exercises to be performed here and
same as if an artist resided in the bushes, granting them personalized are usually accompanied by metal bars or wood structures to fit and
identification. Moments later, recently hatched chicks emerged from assist the workout. These exercise stations allow the hikers and joggers
blackberry bush hideouts to begin pecking away at a fresh trail of to work on achieving overall fitness while on their stroll.
breadcrumbs. Once I felt I had gone far enough, I turned around and returned to
Locals claim a few birds were dropped off here a few years ago the car. I had spotted a Baskin & Robbins ice cream shop on my walk
and they have rapidly increased their numbers. Numerous blackberry and it wasn’t all that far away. After all, I had been good by taking my
patches in the area help the birds elude coyotes or other predators. hike and deserved some type of reward, right? l
King County RSVP’s Experience in Action! Page 3
from pads in mattresses, pillows
Wit & Wisdom and insoles, apparently does
wonders in relieving pain where
by author Henry Wiener other attempts have failed.
There was much to-do about
HGH, the Human Growth
Hidden worlds Hormone, which presumably can
keep the body young and virile.
It nudges the aging pituitary glad
Note to readers: Our dear Henry segments was an author to increase production and turn
is now residing at the Kline Galland reporting on his contact with back to its previous youth and
home and would welcome any thoughts a Messiah-like Master working health-promoting level.
or good wishes. toward bringing all nations Another member of this
It wasn’t until I was well on together in cosmic harmony. cadre of health enhancers is bee
the road to becoming a senior In order to meet with him, the pollen, which, like the others The Retired & Senior Volunteer
that I became aware of the writer reportedly had to be advertised, was touted as an Program (RSVP) is a nonprofit
hidden worlds that come to life taken out of his body. It was ingredient guaranteed to keep
National Senior Corps program
in the evening and hang around great to learn that all of us can oldsters feeling young again.
sponsored locally by Solid
the whole night. Ground. RSVP encourages and
attain those spiritual heights, For those fighting the battle of supports volunteerism in King
When I was younger, all I live forever and accomplish the bulge, there was a substance County for people 55 and older.
needed to do was close my eyes miracles with the “energy of described as a “fat blaster” which
and think a few good thoughts life” component of such cosmic is designed to make the blubber
to fall fast asleep. That luxury is attainment. disappear without dieting,
gone and the output from the Another unusual story was convert glucose into energy and
late night radio has become the the experience of a group of curtail the fat-producing process.
sedative for reaching that old tourists busy taking pictures of One of the unexpected
dream state. the scenery. Suddenly one finds wonders was wild oregano, a
In the last two decades, a UFO in the camera’s sights. A favorite of the ancient Greeks Solid Ground is dedicated to
sleepily wandering through the Chaplinesque sequence ensues and Romans. This herb is
achieving a just and caring
Sandman’s domain, I have been in which the tourists pursue the considered an enthusiastic fighter
community free from poverty,
forced to traverse terrain set flying object, snapping away. prejudice and neglect. Our 30
of colds, flu and other infections. programs give nearly 33,000
with seductive thirty-minute Without warning the UFO plays Included in this healing families a year the services,
programmatic minefields. turnabout, changes its course community is HA, Hyaluronic resources and support they need
The cornucopia of subjects and follows the human voyeurs Acid, present in the traditional to overcome homelessness,
and hawked products that clutter home. Having satisfied their Japanese diet, a key factor in hunger, domestic violence and
the landscape, especially on curiosity about earthlings, the resisting life-threatening disease. other poverty-related traumas.
weekends, are bizarre, fanciful, aliens zoom away to their own My hidden world is filled
visionary and incredible. They world, much to the vacationers’ with a myriad of messages of
touch the whole gamut of relief. available counter-aging magic.
our basic needs and intimate But on Fridays and Saturdays Unfortunately, the stress of
yearnings. much of the night air is filled deciding which of these panaceas
During the week, from early with cleverly constructed to consider has accelerated the
evening to 3 a.m., you can find commercials in which a variety aging process. Experience in Action! (EIA) is
many startling appetizers to the of medications and treatments I now get up each day with published quarterly by King
main weekend fare. Appearing are offered, all with the my body feeling much older than County RSVP and distributed
before my ears are a host of guarantee, “your money back” the one I put to bed the night to 4,000 RSVP volunteers and
unusual beings: ghosts, witches, and enticing inducements for before. l friends. EIA is dedicated to
UFO denizens, mediums, quick response. Henry Wiener is author of the providing news and information
apparitions and a variety of One of these is the promise book ‘Wit and Wisdom.’ to RSVP volunteers. Articles
angels. of bio-magnetic therapy. The express writers’ opinions which
In one of the talk show power of magnetic fields flowing are not necessarily the views
of RSVP or EIA. We reserve the
right to refuse any material
deemed unsuitable. Articles
The gift of warmth the receiving agencies. and grateful for the chance to may be edited in accordance
Continued from page 1 Distribution day was more participate. with technical and editorial
of a celebration of all the To judge the impact of the policy guidelines.
Janae’s only lament is that yearlong work and organizing KIA program, I spoke with K.C.
“there’s a greater need than we EIA / RSVP STAff
than a chore. Tables around the Young, director of Sojourner
Robin Knudson, Editor
can supply.” “There’s a huge room at the RSVP office were Place, a home for women in Jennifer Gahagan, Asst. Editor
amount of talent out there, and stacked high with colorful hats, transition and an RSVP site
EIA NEWSlETTER CommITTEE
it’s always fun to unpack the mittens, sweaters, blankets, and partner. K.C. pointed out that Susan Baker, Mary Harvey, Sandy
boxes and see all the baby booties, all neatly there’s an emotional component Howard, Peter Langmaid, Sarah
beautiful, well-made sorted by category. Ten to the program that goes beyond Parkhurst & Linda Urbaniak
treasures.” When RSVP volunteers filled the obvious utility of the items. PHoNE TTY
206-957-4779 x116 7-1-1
the entire KIA cycle orders and marveled “[These items] are knitted in
is complete, Janae at the quality of the love. And it’s important for mAIlING ADDRESS
1501 N 45th St, Seattle, WA 98103-6708
coordinates the craftsmanship and women in our shelter to know
“thank yous” to all RSVP STREET ADDRESS
creativity. The weather that people care.” The hats, 464 12th Ave, Seattle, WA 98112
the 50 contributing outside was dreary, scarves, gloves, and blankets
knitters and but the mood of the warm the body and the heart. l solid-ground.org/
crocheters on behalf Janae Detwiler, RSVP volunteers inside was GetInvolved/Volunteer/RSVP
of both RSVP and Work Study Student cheerful, amazed,
Page 4 King County RSVP’s Experience in Action!
deeply, imagining yourself • Attend a silent retreat at a
Aging with Wisdom connected to that time and place.
• Find a recipe that you haven’t
spiritual retreat center. As you sit
in silence, notice what thoughts
by Carol Scott-Kassner tried before that sounds appealing and emotions are moving through
to you. Prepare the food, noticing you. Journal, reflecting on where
the smells, textures, and colors of you are at this time of your life.
Really noticing the ingredients. Set the table with
fresh flowers and lovely place
During some of your retreat,
spend time in nature, deeply
One of the joys of getting Attention.” Half angered, the settings. Sit at the table, saying noticing as in the earlier exercise.
older is that we can slow down. man demanded: “What does thanks for this abundance. Slowly During meals, truly savor your
In fact, our bodies sometimes the word ‘Attention’ mean eat what you have prepared, food. Listen to music that is
mandate that we stop moving so anyway?” Ikkyu gently responded, savoring each bite. Notice the calming for you, fully entering
quickly. We can give ourselves “Attention means attention.” tastes and textures. Chew each the sounds, letting them fill you.
permission to simply “be” rather This story can be frustrating bite slowly, enjoying what you eat. Move to the music with your
than “doing” all of the time. It until we enter it deeply and If you enjoy a good glass of wine, whole body or simply one hand.
is amazing what happens when realize what Ikkyu is trying to have it as an accompaniment to Feel the flow of your body in
we slow down. We really start transmit to the seeker. When dinner. As you drink it, enjoy the response to the music. At some
to notice things. The process of we pay attention, we need to flavors of the various grapes that point, see if you can simply be,
noticing can be to move inside of pay attention with our whole have contributed to this wine as free of thoughts and worries. Be
ourselves or to attend to things, selves—our eyes, our ears, and well as the barrels in which it was present to your breathing. Let any
people, and events around us. our senses of smell and touch aged. thoughts simply move through
Every major spiritual tradition as well as taste. We also need • Sit with a close friend or your mind and out. Return to
emphasizes the importance of to attend with our minds and family member who wants to your breathing.
slowing down, listening, and spirits. We need to fully enter the share something important with May you take the time to listen,
paying attention. People raised in moment that we are in and truly you. Simply listen to the story really listen to yourself, to nature,
the Christian tradition are familiar notice what we are experiencing. without interrupting, judging and to others. May the practice
with the short passage, “Be This spiritual practice can be them, or giving feedback. Try to of noticing bring you to a deeper
still and know that I am God,” particularly rewarding in listening remain still as you take in what is appreciation of your connection
from Psalm 46:10. You can use to the needs of people we love said, being fully present. When to all of life. May the practice of
that passage in meditation. Sit or in meeting a stranger. It can the story is finished, reflect back noticing bring you peace. l
comfortably, close your eyes and be helpful when we eat, really what you noticed about feelings, Carol Scott-Kassner is co-founder
say to yourself, “Be still and know savoring our food. It can enhance saying things such as, “That with Pat Lewis of ‘Aging with
that I am God. Be still and know our experience of being in nature, seemed painful to you,” or “I Wisdom.’ Pat and Carol are available
that I am. Be still and know. Be truly noticing the shape, color, heard you saying, . . .” Above all, to do workshops on various aspects of
still. Be.” scent, and texture of a tree or don’t give advice or tell a story of the spiritual journey of aging. They can
That series can be repeated flower. When we pay attention in a similar experience that you’ve be contacted at: www.agingwithwisdom.
as you move into centeredness this way, we are truly alive in all had. Simply be a container for the com or email@example.com.
with Divine energy—simply of our senses. To be fully alive is story. Listen, really listen.
being present to your breath and to be fully present. Surprisingly,
a sense of quiet. As we sit in we can often use this technique
quiet our body rhythms slow, our of deeply noticing when we are
breathing slows, and our blood in pain from a headache or injury.
pressure drops. We move to a Really notice the pain, entering
place of healthy equilibrium. We it fully. It will often go away.
can use this quiet time to offer Here are some techniques you fall EIA corrections
any challenges we are facing as can use to slow down and take
a prayer, releasing them into the the time to “really notice.” If We at RSVP do our best to be as accurate as possible in
universe, holding them lightly. you commit to practicing them our reporting, but we have found that in the Fall issue
Often during this process of over time, you should discover we made 2 mistakes that need addressing.
stillness, things that have been a qualitative change in your life. The first, and
confusing or troubling to us come You should feel more alive and worst, is that in
into the light. We notice them in more connected. the article about
new ways. • Find a place in nature to sit. the Citywide
The Buddhist tradition invites Stay there for a minimum of 30 Concierge and
us to notice things by really minutes. Notice everything that Visitor Center we
paying attention. you can – the sounds, the sights, identified Charla
A wonderful Zen story goes the smells, the feeling of the air Sullivan as the
like this: and the sun on your skin. Record person in the
One day a man approached what you notice in your mind or photo and it isn’t
Ikkyu and asked: “Master, in a journal, describing sensations, her! Here is the
will you please write for me colors, textures and how they real, and very
some maxims of the highest impact you. If you want, draw delightful, Charla The real Charla Sullivan!
wisdom?” Ikkyu took his brush a picture of what you noticed. Sullivan. (Photo by Doug Howard)
and wrote, “Attention.” “Is that Over time, extend this practice to
all?” asked the man. Ikkyu then an hour or longer. Write a poem
wrote, “Attention, Attention.” using some of the words you’ve The second error was in the article about Communities
“Well,” said the man. “I really used to describe your experience in Schools. We misspelled the name of our volunteer
don’t see much depth in what of noticing. Read some of mary Ellen flanagan.
you have written.” Then Ikkyu the poetry of Mary Oliver to
wrote the same word three experience her deep connection We extend our apologies to both of these great
times: “Attention, Attention, with nature. Enter those images volunteers.
King County RSVP’s Experience in Action! Page 5
What is hidden away at the Puget Sound archives?
featured Site: Puget Sound Regional Archives by Linda Urbaniak
The records of a civilization add up, and they need to be stored, A volunteer at the Archives needs to have an interest in records,
recorded and available for research. Here in the Puget Sound area, and it also helps to have some office skills. Computer skills are
those records of local government are kept at the Puget Sound helpful now and will become even more so in the future. An
Regional Archives located on the Bellevue Community College ability that might not be thought of as useful is the ability to read
campus. It is one of five regional branches of the Washington State cursive writing. That skill is beginning to become obsolete. “Senior
Archives. volunteers show pride in their work. They will go the extra mile and
The regional archives were established about 40 years ago are dedicated to go beyond the surface. They bring to their job a
to spread the work of the Washington State Archives. They are love of history and important local knowledge,” said Okazaki.
located in Bellevue, for the Puget Coming across old marriage
Sound region, Bellingham for the records of famous people or
Northwest Region, Cheney for the finding pictures of houses they
East Region, Ellensburg for the lived in as a child that no longer
Central Region and Olympia for exist are some of the unexpected
the Southwest region and State rewards for volunteers. The
Government. records of King County contain
The mandate for the PSRA, the pictures of every house on
according to Midori Okazaki, the assessor’s records that existed
the Assistant Regional Archivist from 1937 through the present
Volunteer Coordinator is “to time. Until 1972 the records were
collect and maintain local updated with each change in
government records, those from structures. There is a reward also
cities, counties, school districts, in being able to dig and dig and
etc., below the state level in dig to find something needed for a
King, Snohomish and Pierce researcher.
counties.” She stressed “It is also Because of the risk of natural
an important aspect of open disasters, the age of some of the
government. The ability to read documents that may deteriorate,
the records of government, to Trudy Dasovick at work at the Puget Sound Regional Archives and the huge volumes of data,
guarantee that information is full, (Photo by Midori Okazaki) Washington State has implemented
accurate and timely in its disclosure a centralized digital repository for
and to be sure that those in power are accountable provide state and local information and
governmental transparency. This is important in a democracy.” records. By preserving marriage, death and other vital records,
Right now there are three RSVP volunteers working at the PSRA. digital records can be stored more easily and information recovered
Helen Lewis is the most senior volunteer in the archive system and more quickly than original documents. This massive project will
was recognized by the Secretary of State for her dedicated work. preserve documents that protect personal rights, ensure government
Martha Richardson and Trudy Dasovick also devote long hours to transparency and accountability and make available to everyone the
the Archives. Volunteers have opportunities to work with archival history of people and institutions.
research, to assist research clients, to develop outreach products and If you are interested in this fascinating work, call Jennifer
events and to process archival collections. Gahagan at RSVP: 206-957-4779 x 122. l
Howard Hanson Dam potential for significant flooding
in the Green River Valley so the
Zolle, Volunteer Manager of
American Red Cross Serving
American Red Cross Serving King & Kitsap Counties. “The
flood risk King & Kitsap Counties is
looking for individuals to train
Red Cross ReserveCorps is a
great way to help your neighbors
now as ReserveCorps shelter and really make a difference in
featured Site: Red Cross Reserve Corps volunteers, so they will be ready our community. Taking steps to
Red Cross Press Release to respond during flood season. be trained before flood season
“We are looking for volunteer will help our area be better
While almost all parts of flood water—including parts of shelter workers for larger scale prepared to respond.”
the Greater Seattle area are Auburn, Kent, Renton, South disaster responses because we For more information about
susceptible to floods or flash Seattle and Tukwila - could flood. know that there is a higher risk ReserveCorps, please contact
floods, residents and businesses Your local American Red Cross for flooding in the Green River Jennifer Gahagan at 206-957-
below Howard Hanson Dam needs volunteers to help prepare Valley this year,” said Ivy Davis 4779 x 122. l
in the Green River Valley are at communities for floods and to
higher risk than previous years. provide disaster relief such as
Water is seeping more rapidly shelter, food and clean-up kits.
through an earthen bank next We also have volunteers that
to the dam. Until the U.S. Army give free community disaster
Corps of Engineers can make preparedness presentations to
repairs, it must limit the amount community groups, businesses,
of flood water it stores behind and schools around King
the dam. If heavy and prolonged County. Get trained now, so
rain occurs this winter, many you’re ready when the time
homes and businesses in the comes. All training is free.
valley that don’t typically see This year there is the
Page 6 King County RSVP’s Experience in Action!
a similar effect can be achieved smaller, shagbark hickory is also
The Garden Lady with a few paper birch trees.
These native, eastern US trees
available with smaller plates
by Linda Urbaniak have attractively peeling white For pure bark drama the
outer bark, that reveal, with sycamore, or plane tree has few
maturity, the orange-brown inner rivals. This large tree has flaking
Trees are rarely really seen bark. This was the bark once used bark with gray, charcoal, cream
for canoes by and brown,
eastern Native all showing at
Americans. the same time.
Trees are rarely really seen. shiny, cinnamon brown inner The color is
Mostly they are just part of the bark. There are several “snake- noticeable,
background. We notice trees bark” or “tiger-bark” maples that although not
leafing out in the spring; in the have whitish or greenish stripes very advanced,
can grow into
fall we notice the beautiful colors on darker green-brown bark that even on young
of their leaves; when they are in really stands out during winter trees. Although
bloom, but rarely do we notice months. Usually this striping usually thought
them in winter. This is, however, occurs only on the younger trees, of as a bush,
when we can best observe giving way to different bark with the crepe myrtle
their striking barks, in all their only tracings of the younger can develop
variations. coloration as the tree fully into a 40-
Some trees provide flowers matures. The coral-bark maple foot tree. The
in winter although they are has bright reddish-orange twigs peeling bark
usually, though not always, small. and branches that develop their reveals lovely
addition to their
During the dark months their color only after the leaves fall, and striation with
large blossoms Coral-bark maple
lovely scent, needed to attract only on the younger branches. contrasting
in white, pink (Photo by Jen Gahagan)
pollinators, fills the winter air. These trees can be pruned to brown and
and red, some are
Others provide interest through maintain the coloration. cream coloring.
beautifully scented, something
their reproductive forms, from Aspen will create large stands A walk through your
like jasmine tea. Witch hazel is
cones to dangling racemes. Tall of the tree (every trunk is from neighborhood, the Washington
another dramatically scented,
firs show off the same tree) Park Arboretum or the Bellevue
winter blooming tree. The tiny
their rugged bark that will show Botanical Garden will reveal
feather duster flowers, pale
and western red off their, trunks,
yellow to bright yellow through to these and many other dramatic
cedars reveal ghostly white,
russet orange, appear long before trees that show off their easily
their striated splotched with concealed treasures during winter.
bark that looks black. The trunks Take some time to really look at
Certainly one of the more
as if it has been become especially
dramatic native American trees is trees. You’ll be surprised by what
scratched by noticeable as you discover.l
the shellbark hickory. This large
enormous bears. the leaves turn
eastern native develops huge,
The maples bright sunshine Linda Urbaniak is a docent at
curving, peeling plates of bark up
give us the most yellow and then the Bellevue Botanic Garden and an
to three feet long. With a second
variety in their fall all at once to RSVP Ambassador. She will gladly
hickory for pollination nearby
bark as well as reveal the white take your gardening questions at
you also may benefit from a few
in their form trees, barren of firstname.lastname@example.org. l
edible nuts. The similar, slightly
The paper-bark their leaves. If
maple sloughs an increasing
off its rough,
curling outer Paperbark maple
stand of trees
is unwanted in
Post Office scoundrels?
bark to display (Photo by Robin Knudson) your small yard,
A little holiday humor...
I am an 87-year-old widow living on Social Security and while
at the grocery store, I lost my purse. I don’t have any ID, so I
know it won’t be returned, and it wasn’t turned in to the store. It
WHAT IS AN RSVP AmBASSADoR? had almost my last $100 in it. I had been planning on using it to
An RSVP Ambassador is an RSVP Volunteer who is fix a holiday dinner for my friends Harry and Alice. Now I can’t.
willing to help us spread the word about the benefits Can you help me?
of volunteering. Because of our small staff, we have Thank you, God. Elsie”
assembled a wonderful group of volunteers who help Joe was deeply touched and went around the Post Office telling the
us share the mission of RSVP with other seniors. If you story and most of the workers pitched a few dollars in. He sealed an
would be willing to represent RSVP at events around envelope with the money in it and sent it off to Elsie at the address on
King County, we would like to talk to you. her envelope.
We do not ask for a specific time commitment, only that A couple of days later another letter appeared addressed to “God”.
you occasionally share your enthusiasm for volunteering Again Joe opened the letter and was warmed by the first sentence.
and help us encourage others by relating your own “Dear God,
experiences and telling about RSVP We provide a fun, Thank you for hearing my prayer. Harry and Alice and I had
interactive training and give you the opportunity to a wonderful dinner and it was so nice to sit with friends. But
meet another group of active, enthusiastic people. God, I have to tell you something. There was only $96 dollars in
To sign up or ask more questions: Contact Robin the envelope. I think those scoundrels at the Post Office stole the
Knudson, 206-957-4779 x116 or email@example.com. other $4.
Thank you, God. Elsie” l
King County RSVP’s Experience in Action! Page 7
Exercise better than
Senior on the Street
angioplasty? by Peter Langmaid
by Jim Evans, Senior Fitness Examiner
What is your favorite
DEAR JIM: My doctor says the arteries to my heart are all
clogged up and that I need an angioplasty. I’ve been really been
dragging for the past couple of years with absolutely no energy, so
I’m thinking maybe this is the best way to go. I’m not very active,
and I’m a bit overweight at 70, but my wife says she likes my “love
handles” – otherwise I have no major medical issues. What do you
think? CONSIDERING SURGERY IN COLUMBUS
DEAR CONSIDERING: What do I think? I think you should
get off your butt, start exercising, and lose those so-called “love
handles” whether your wife likes them or not. What do I think about
“Working booths at senior
an angioplasty? I will leave that choice to you and your physician, but fairs, because I meet so many
there may be a better choice. nice people.”
With an angioplasty the doctor typically inserts a balloon-tipped ~Loretta Pearson
catheter (sometimes they use a laser instead) into one of your blood
vessels and maneuvers it around to one of your clogged arteries
where it is inflated to compress the plaque against the arterial walls.
A stainless steel mesh or “stent” is then inserted in the now-open
artery to hold the plaque in place and keep things clear so that the
blood can circulate through it again (a laser would vaporize the
Angioplasties are the most common treatment for your condition,
but a recent study showed that 90 percent of patients had no further “Helping people with their
heart problems just one year after riding a bike regularly while food trays during lunch at
the Kent Senior Center’s Mill
corresponding patients who had an angioplasty instead were just 70
percent problem -free. In other words, exercise may work better for ~Cheryl Larson
you than an angioplasty.
At a recent meeting of the European Society of Cardiology in
escardio.org/Pages/index.aspx) reported by Maria Cheng of the
Associated Press, several experts said doctors should focus more
on persuading their patients to exercise rather than simply doing
angioplasties. Now, whether or not your doctor would go along with
this thinking is another story. More to the point, however, is whether
or not you would be willing to start exercising to alleviate your
“It’s difficult to convince people to exercise instead of having ~Robert McMurry
an angioplasty, but it works,” said Rainer Hambrecht of Klinikum
Links der Weser in Bremen, Germany. Moreover, according to Dr.
Christopher Cannon, associate professor of medicine at Harvard
University and spokesman for the American College of Cardiology,
an angioplasty “only opens up one vessel blockage. Exercise does a
lot more than fixing one little problem.”
Other benefits of exercise that we have talked about frequently in
• Exercise lowers bad cholesterol while raising good cholesterol
• Exercise helps the body process sugar better
• Exercise improves the lining of the blood vessels and gets rid of “Teaching seniors arts and
waste material faster crafts.”
• Exercise lowers blood pressure and prevents plaque buildup in ~Jacquie Myers
Previous research has estimated one third of heart disease and
stroke could be prevented if patients did two-and-a-half hours of
brisk walking every week. In the U.S., that would mean 280,000
fewer heart-related deaths every year. That could also be you.
Joep Perk, a professor of health sciences at Sweden’s Kalmar
University and spokesman for the European Society of Cardiology,
said two thirds of heart patients in line for an angioplasty could
probably get better benefits by regularly working up a sweat. Further,
“RSVP. I ran the Federal Way
he said doctors who performed angioplasties on their patients
Senior Center as a volunteer
without asking them to change their lifestyles were ignoring the for 11 years.”
fundamental problem. ~Harry Schreiber
There may be other underlying medical factors that you or your
doctor have not revealed about your condition that would mandate
an angioplasty in your circumstances, but I urge you to at least
consider this information as a possible alternative. Otherwise, I think
you already know where I stand. l
Page 8 King County RSVP’s Experience in Action!
Volunteer & Community opportunities through RSVP
The following are just a few of the volunteer and community opportunities RSVP has to offer. To talk to a real
person about opportunities that are just right for you, call Jennifer Gahagan at 206-957-4779 x122 — or visit our
website at www.solid-ground.org/GetInvolved/Volunteer/RSVP for regional volunteer opportunity listings.
Volunteering In Our Community
AARP fraud fighter Call Center: Con artists bilk American All City Tutor Training:
consumers out of more than $40 billion dollars every year. Saturday, February 6, 2010
According to AARP research, people over age 50 account for over 9:00am-1:05pm
half of all victims. AARP has teamed up with the Washington State Feel free to come 15 minutes early to sign up for workshops and get
Attorney General’s Office to create a program whose mission is to refreshments.
provide consumers with information about the latest in consumer Aki Kurose Middle School
scams and schemes. If you would like to help keep our community 3928 S. Graham St.
safe, come join our great team of volunteers. Seattle 98118
This free training is open to tutors, parents, grandparents or anyone
........................................................... with an interest in helping students academically.
The Power of one: Our senior volunteer program is recruiting The variety of workshops cover everything from basic orientation
people 55 and older to volunteer in Shoreline public schools. for new tutors and elementary reading to math games and student
Reading and math tutors, mentors, and classroom and library helpers motivation
are some of the needs. Ages range from preschool to high school. For more information or to sign up call 253-815-3066 or email
Apple Corps: A program of Solid Ground. Volunteers present
or assist with nutrition and cooking lessons for groups of children fIUTS - foundation for International Understanding
at Seattle elementary schools and community centers during the through Students:
school day and at after-school programs. Volunteers support staff Take the World to Work program is a unique opportunity for
with hands-on education as well as set-up, food preparation, and international students and returned study abroad students to
clean-up. Volunteers may also assist with developing lesson plans or explore their future careers from a global perspective. Local hosts,
resource development. representing fields ranging from science and engineering to business,
design, and management, invite students to spend the day in their
workplaces or welcome them on tours or group visits. This year’s
United Way of King County: United Way is recruiting 100 Take the World to Work program will be held from February 16-22,
volunteers to read aloud to pre-school aged children (ages 3 to 5), 2010.
one-on-one or in very small groups, in 20 select child care programs Learn more about Take the World to Work at a special reception on
throughout King County. You can choose the time and facility. Thursday, January 14, from 5:30-7:30 PM at the UW Tower (4333
........................................................... Brookly Avenue N.) The Take the World to Work Reception is a
Brighton Elementary School: Volunteer positions include one- networking opportunity for local professionals and graduate and
on-one tutors, math coaches, classroom assistants, library aides and undergraduate students and scholars from around the world.
more. The HOSTS reading intervention program seeks volunteers Call (206)685-1548 for more information.
for Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, or Friday afternoons between 12:30 ...........................................................
and 3 pm who are willing to make a commitment of at least 1 hour/
Garfield Community Center RecTech Program:
week for 3 months. Students and volunteers will be paired 1 to 1.
We offer free technology classes for adults and seniors. The
The ARC before- and after-school program also needs volunteers
following are course offerings for the 2010 Winter Quarter (Jan.-
for the rest of the school year and in the summer.
Mar.): MicroSoft word; Internet, email and websites; Digital
........................................................... photogatraphy. Space is limited and preregistration is required. For
Humane Society for Seattle/King County: (Bellevue). We more information call Brooke Kempner at 206-684-4788 or email
need volunteers we can count on to help us in the event of a local firstname.lastname@example.org.
disaster (such as last year’s snow storm) – volunteers who can come ...........................................................
to our campus to help us care for our animals and any community Senior Citizens lobby Day:
animals that are brought to us for refuge. You can also help out by Tuesday, February 18, 2010.
assisting our Operations Dept. to prep and handle animals for the United Churches, 110 11th Ave. SE, Olympia, WA
filming of our Comcast On Demand Adopt-A-Pet program, every Call (360)754-0207, email email@example.com or go to
other Thursday from 9:00 to 1:00. waseniorlobby.org on the Web.
Partners in Caring: A program of Solid Ground. We are in need
of people to help deliver groceries to our elderly and low-income * Please call to help me find a volunteer opportunity suited
housing community. Volunteers will meet at Solid Ground in the just for me.
Wallingford area to load groceries and then go out in teams to * Please send information about RSVP.
deliver to Seattle Housing Authority buildings.
* Please note my new address.
Southeast Seattle Senior Center: Volunteers are needed to Name:
help teach classes or work in reception, the kitchen, or the computer Phone: Email:
lab. Visit our senior center to experience the rich diversity of the
Rainier Valley. We welcome you at the Southeast Seattle Senior Address:
Center where active older adults gather for Fun, Fitness, Friendship,
Please mail this form to: RSVP, 464 12th Avenue, Seattle, WA 98112