Aging Well in the Gorge March 17th 2021

I’ve been around the block enough that each time it seems to get longer and I think back to when I would ask my mother “Do I have to?” But now there is no one to tell me, “You better before your father gets home!”

So how do you stay motivated instead of sitting on the couch in front of the 40’ flat-screen TV enjoying an episode of Midsomer Murders for the third time? (Ah, the benefit of a poor memory!)

In her web post, “The 5 Things I Want to Learn in My 60s”, Melissa T. Shultz describes the way she stays motivated, challenging herself to discover new experiences. 

How? By creating her own What’s Next? list: a positive, purposeful, ongoing set of goals that keeps her pointed in the right direction and always looking forward. 

So this week how about finding some time to create your own What’s Next? list. And to spur your imagination, below are Melissa’s five goals on her What’s Next? list – and I’ve added a few suggestions of my own.

1.) “How to Find My Voice Without Words” – learning to express herself through painting. Or you could add understanding modern art to your list, so the next time you go to an art museum, you’re not asking yourself “What was he thinking of?” 

2.) “How to Make and Drink a Martini”. Or maybe something more appealing: researching and tasting local wines starting by taking the OSU course “The Sensory Evaluation of Wine” in Portland.

3.) “How to Mentor Better”- by speaking “with” instead of “to” someone. You could volunteer mentoring students at your neighborhood school where you’ll find yourself invigorated by their youthful energy or really, really tired!

4.) “How to Plank for More Than 3 Minutes” – by understanding what is required to build muscle. Or you could study and take up Tai Chi: a low-impact, slow-motion exercise that can improve muscle strength, flexibility, and balance. And can help prevent falls!

5.) “How to Make My Grandmother’s Chicken Soup.” Or how about learning to bake, such as a delicate loaf of baklava you saw on The Great British Baking Show?

These are some ideas to start you thinking about what would be on your What’s Next? list. By setting goals, it can help you find your motivation, rekindle memories, tap your creativity, and seek and fulfill your Big little dreams. 

I often must be reminded about what I need to do otherwise it will slip off my radar – and let’s face it, my radar is getting smaller every day. So, as a reminder, you have until March 19th to complete the Community Survey for Older Adults online at or you can call 541-705-5434.

A random view on aging: “We never really grow up; we only learn how to act in public.”

The singer who first performed “Me and Bobby McGee” written by Kristofferson was Janis Joplin. I received correct answers from Susan Ellis, Steven Wollfest, Barbara Cadwell, Patty Burnet, Rhonda Spies, Julie Carter, Ricki Duckwall, Sandy Haechrel, Kim Birge, Margo Dameier, Gene Uczen, Pat Evenson-Brady, and Dave Hanson this week’s winner of a quilt raffle ticket.

Remember in high school or college when you were stressing out trying to finish reading the novel in a week – and then in the bookstore, you found your salvation? For this week’s “Remember When” question, what was the name of the popular student study guides with the yellow and black covers first published in 1958? Email your answer to, leave a message at 541-296-4788 or send it with the Classic Illustrated comic book Robinson Crusoe.

Well, it has been another week, enjoying my memories while not always trusting them. Until we meet again, it’s the wonderful time of the year when flower buds once again poke their sleepy heads out to see if it’s time to get out of bed.

“Why can’t we get all the people together in the world that we really like and then just stay together? I guess that wouldn’t work. Someone would leave. Someone always leaves and then we have to say good-bye. I hate good-byes. I know what I need. I need more hellos.” Snoopy

Nutritious Home delivered meals and pick-ups for anyone over 60. 

Hood River Valley Adult Center – Call 541-386-2060. 

The Dalles Meals-on-Wheels – Call 541-298-8333. 

The Sherman County Senior and Community Center – Call 541-565-3191 by 10:30 AM and leave a message with the number of meals needed and names of each person.

Klickitat County Senior Services – Goldendale office call the 509-773-3757 or the White Salmon office call 509-493-306.

Skamania County Senior Services – Call 509-427-3990.

Seniors of Mosier Valley – Call 541-503-5660 or 541-980-1157 at least one day in advance to order a Grab-N-Go meal. Monday and Wednesdays from 11-11:30.

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