monthly “You are not alone.”
A popular topic for elder law attorneys around the holidays is to have “the conversation” with aging family members. I get it. It can be alarming to come home for Thanksgiving to see Mom or Dad looking frail or perhaps unable to take care of themselves the way they used to. It’s tempting to want to “DO SOMETHING” right away. ENJOY EACH OTHER ON THANKSGIVING If you are traveling to be with family or if you have family coming home for Thanksgiving make being with your family the priority. Conversations can be stressful enough without the added burden of having to talk about taking care of mom or dad. Instead, use the time at home to focus on each other and appreciate the time you have together. Find opportunities to laugh and be helpful to each other. Use the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas to learn as much as you can about what you can do to best serve your aging family. FROM THE DESK OF Paul Stano It’s tempting, but not necessary.
Some people love Thanksgiving just the way it is, but others feel the annual traditions that come with it are stifling. If you’re dreading the inevitable conversation about whose house to go to, which side dishes to cook, and who to invite to the table, why not mix things up for 2019? Just because Thanksgiving falls on the same fourth Thursday each November doesn’t mean you’re locked into the same holiday routine. If you’re stuck in a Turkey Day rut, try one of these alternate celebrations and enjoy the spirit of gratitude in a new way. WELCOME THE UNCONVENTIONAL THANKSGIVING 3 Ideas for Mixing Up the Traditional Turkey Day TV shows love to draw up stories about devastated characters forced to spend Thanksgiving without their extended families, but really, what’s so bad about making Thanksgiving an intimate affair? Big, boisterous Thanksgivings with every uncle, cousin, and stepsister certainly have their downsides. Slaving over the stove is stressful, and bringing people from so many different walks of life together can cause heated arguments. Why not skip the drama this Thanksgiving and enjoy a romantic dinner with your significant other or a cozy meal with your spouse and kids? You can cook together at home or grab a table at a restaurant with a Turkey Day special to leave the stress of cooking behind entirely. In the end, you may be even more grateful for those you hold dear. ‘JUST US’ THANKSGIVING
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This gathering of friends rather than family has been a Thanksgiving option for decades, but in the last few years, rising popularity has given it a name: Friendsgiving. Some people think that the moniker dates back to a 2007 episode of the TV show “Friends,” while others credit Twitter users or a 2011 Bailey’s Irish Cream marketing campaign. Whatever its origins, The Atlantic says the informal, potluck-style meal gained real traction with 20- and 30-somethings in 2014 and has only gotten more popular since. Friendsgiving is a great option if you’re living far from home, don’t get along well with your family, or simply want to avoid the pressure holidays bring. For the best of both worlds, try adding a Friendsgiving to your Thanksgiving routine, either on the weekend before or the weekend after Turkey Day.
“Thanksgiving at the Beach.” Alternately, turning Thanksgiving into a family trip with your spouse and kids is a great way to completely avoid political discussions and best-pumpkin-pie debates. If anyone calls to ask where you are, just explain that you planned your trip months ago — then take another sip of your piña colada and show your kids how to make a turkey-shaped sandcastle.
altogether and jet off to a hotel room instead. The destination Thanksgiving is a great way to take advantage of days off work, and they can bring families together on neutral territory. If you’re bringing the full crew, rent an Airbnb for everyone and have fun experimenting with Thanksgiving recipes that fit your new surroundings. If you go tropical, for example, MyRecipes.com offers an entire menu for
Here’s a new way to solve the “Whose house should we eat at?” debate: Skip the houses
THE GREATEST AMERICANWAR HORSE The Legend of Sergeant Reckless
Sergeant Reckless’ greatest achievement occurred during the final stages of the Battle for Outpost Vegas. During the bloody five-day campaign, Reckless made 51 trips to resupply guns over the course of a single day. By the end of the battle, she had carried 386 rounds of ammunition by walking 35 miles through rice paddies and mountain trails. After dropping off the ammunition, Reckless would then bring wounded soldiers back to safety. Reckless was trained to lie down when under fire and avoid barbed wire, and her ability to do so without needing human command saved many lives during the battle. Reckless would close out her war career with two Purple Hearts and the rank of staff sergeant. She spent the rest of her years at Camp Pendleton in California. To learn more about this legendary mare, be sure to check out “Sgt. Reckless: America’s War Horse” by Robin Hutton.
Animals have acted as companions to humankind for thousands of years. They’re a near-constant source of companionship, comfort, and aid. Unfortunately, military animals don’t often get the recognition they deserve. One horse, in particular, was essential to the success of her regiment during the Korean War. Meet Sergeant Reckless. Bought for $250 in 1952 by a U.S. Marine Corps lieutenant at a Seoul racetrack, Sergeant Reckless was trained to carry ammunition for the 5th Marine Regiment. Her name was a play on the “recoilless” rifle ammunition she carried and a nod to the daredevil attitude of the soldiers who used them. Reckless was pivotal for her regiment in more ways than one. As Robin Hutton notes in her book “Sgt. Reckless: America’s War Horse,”“Because horses are ‘herd’ animals, the Marines became her herd. She bonded so deeply with them that Reckless would go anywhere and do anything to help her adopted family.”
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YOUR MOOD Tea leaves contain the amino acid L-theanine, which stimulates several feel- good neurotransmitters, like serotonin and gamma-Aminobutyric acid (GABA). These neurotransmitters help boost your mood and alertness. According to a study by the Huazhong University of Science and Technology in China, tea even has the ability to ward off depression. The study took 22,817 participants with 4,743 cases of depression over 11 studies, and 13 reports found that individuals who drank three cups of tea a day decreased their depression risk by 37%. So, the next time you want a warm beverage that will do your mind and body good, reach for some tea and bask in all the health benefits as you sip. Tea Time WHAT’S SWIRLING AROUND IN YOUR CUP?
cholesterol. Studies also link tea consumption with improved vascular reactivity — how well your blood vessels respond to stress.
Tea has been consumed for thousands of years and is the second-most popular drink in the world, with water being the first. It is the national drink of several nations, including China and India, and is an integral component of religious ceremonies the world over. Drinking tea has been known to reduce stress, promote relaxation, and improve sleep. In addition to these instant benefits, tea can also help improve a person’s long-term health through regular consumption. According to Harvard Health Institute, several studies show that those who regularly drink black and green tea are at a lower risk of developing cardiovascular disease. These types of tea contain antioxidants and flavonoids, which are plant chemicals that help dilate arteries and reduce bad YOUR HEART
Flavonoids don’t only fight heart disease; these chemicals can also reduce any vascular damage to the brain. The National University of Singapore has conducted studies that link reduced risks of dementia in the elderly with regular tea consumption. The results speak for themselves: “The longitudinal study involving 957 Chinese seniors aged 55 years or older has found that regular consumption of tea lowers the risk of cognitive decline in the elderly by 50%, while APOE e4 gene carriers who are genetically at risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease may experience a reduction in cognitive impairment risk by as much as 86%.”
Take a Break!
LEFTOVER THANKSGIVING DOG TREATS
Inspired by TwoHealthyKitchens.com
If the leftovers are your favorite part of Thanksgiving, then this recipe is for you! Show your dog how thankful you are for themwith these post-feast dog treats.
2 cups cooked turkey, finely chopped 2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup cooked sweet potatoes, plain and mashed
3/4 cup water
1. Heat oven to 350 F. 2. In a medium bowl, combine sweet potatoes, water, and egg. Add turkey and flour and stir again until dough is thick and sticky. 3. Use a rubber spreader to spread dough evenly on parchment-lined baking sheet, about 1/2-inch thick. Cut dough into small rectangles using a knife or pizza cutter. 4. Bake for 30 minutes, until the dog treats are lightly golden brown. 5. Remove from oven and let treats cool completely. Break treats apart along score lines. 6. Serve fresh or store in refrigerator for up to two weeks.
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INSIDE THIS ISSUE From the Desk of Paul Stano PAGE 1 Thanksgiving 2.0 PAGE 1 The Legend of Sergeant Reckless PAGE 2 Spilling the Tea on Tea PAGE 3 Take a Break PAGE 3 Post-Feast Dog Treats PAGE 3 Simple Ways to Stay Active PAGE 4
5 Simple Ways to Stay Active TOO BUSY TO WORK OUT?
PUT A SPIN ON DATE NIGHT. Forget dinner and a movie. Instead, try taking your date out for a round of miniature golf, indoor rock climbing, an evening stroll, a bike ride, or dancing. You’ll have more fun while doing your body good. GRAB A LEASH. Having a dog gives you plenty of opportunities to stay active. If you don’t have a dog, try asking a neighbor or friend if they would like their dog walked, start a dog-walking service, or volunteer at a local animal shelter. There are plenty of ways to make staying active a part of your daily routine! With enough creativity and motivation, you can turn any activity into an active one.
Being active doesn’t have to mean going to the gym every single day. An active lifestyle can be as simple as going for a walk around the neighborhood for a few minutes a day. There are plenty of ways to exercise during daily activities like shopping, spending time with your kids, or hanging around the house. PARK FARTHER AWAY. A lot of people will spend several minutes trying to find a parking space as close as they can to the entrance of a store. However, parking a little farther away will help you score a better parking space and make sure you get your steps in for the day. DO SOME YOGA. You don’t have to push yourself to your absolute limit in order to stay active. There are other, gentler ways to exercise than running 5 miles a day. Tai chi or
yoga are excellent low-impact alternatives to keep your body fit and healthy.
REDUCE TV TIME. It can be tempting to plop down in front of the television after a long day at work or after dinner, but you can also use this time to be active. Get the family together for a walk around the neighborhood, take a few minutes to dance to some of your favorite tunes, or do some light cleaning around the house.
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