Aging Well in the Gorge January 1st 2020

The new year is knocking at our doors, which like a toddler trying to walk will have many ups and downs – and will eventually knock over everything in the house! And yet we survive, looking forward to another year.  
At the beginning of a new year it is the traditional time to make your New Year’s resolutions. But for us more experienced folks, we may ask “Why do we need New Year’s resolutions? Why would we want to change? I’m happy with my situation, and besides as Doris Day sang, “Que Sera, Sera, Whatever Will Be Will Be”, right?
But consider all the possibilities for this new year. There might be some new habits you want to make or some old ones you want to change. What was the doctor telling you? Enroll in an exercise class – that yoga or Tai Chi class that can improve your balance? Eat better – by preparing healthy recipes found at OSU’s “Food Hero” website? Or get out of the house more – spending time with old friends and making new ones?
There might also be new activities you want to experience: walking unfamiliar trails in the Gorge, taking trips into Portland to watch a NW Senior Theater musical, or building Lego structures with your grandkids.
Yet you may still feel New Year’s resolutions are a great waste of time; and you just want to keep doing the same old same old – and there’s nothing wrong with that. It is familiar and in a world that seems to be constantly changing, the same old same old feels reassuring.
But if you do decide New Year’s resolutions might not be such a bad idea, here are nine simple tips from the Happiness Project’s website,, that could help.
 1. Write your resolution down and be specific. Instead of “make new friends” describe how – such as “start a movie group” or “join an exercise class”.
 2. Review your resolution constantly so you won’t forget.
 3. Hold yourself accountable. Don’t make excuses.
 4. Think big. Make your resolution inspiring and exciting.
 5. Or think small. Something simple and doable.
 6. Separate your resolution, no matter how small, into manageable tasks.
 7. Work on your resolution every day. It is easier to do something consistently than to skip days
8. Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good. The best exercise it the one you will actually do.
 9. As mentioned before, don’t make excuses, but if you keep breaking your resolution, no use constantly beating yourself up. Try a different approach that will get you to the same goal.
New Year’s resolutions are an opportunity to branch out and experience life in ways you may never had considered before. These nine simple tips can help you set and achieve your goals for a new year, whether seeking new experiences or creating new habits, that just might improve your health and help you live a little better and longer. As Carl Bard once said, “Although no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new beginning.”
The name of the 1972 film in which an aged luxury liner on her final voyage is capsized by a giant wave on New Year’s Eve was the Poseidon Adventure. And since last week I was at my niece’s wedding in Chicago (where contrary to what you would think the weather was expected to be warmer than The Dalles), I will announce the quilt raffle ticket winner next week.
Once a month for the next several months I will be focusing on local businesses that have gone and been replaced by a different but similar type of business at the same location. (My apologies to the newcomers who have arrived in The Dalles in the last twenty years.) For this week’s “Remember When” questions, what was the previous name for The Dalles Health and Rehabilitation Center (even before it was called Evergreen); and what was the name of business that was located where Holsteins is today? Email your answer to, leave a message at 541-296-4788 or drop it off with a 1979 map of The Dalles.
Well, it’s been another week, trying to be optimistic in a world of cynicism. Until we meet again, some good advice I saw on a poster at The Springs, “Believe something wonderful is going to happen.”

“One resolution I have made, and try always to keep, is this: To rise above the little things.” John Burroughs

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