Hilltowns Senior News for Thursday, July 7, 2016

Since this is the graduation issue, I thought I’d take this opportunity to give a commencement address.

Seniors, as you embark upon this new phase of your life, there will be great opportunities, but there will also be challenges. This is the time when you can test your mettle, and pursue your dreams.

Try new things, try out careers, do what you love, but know that only your efforts are a sure thing; the outcome depends on a universe of factors, most of which are beyond your control.  

This is a time to find out your own individual strengths and limitations. You have strengths you didn’t know you had, and weaknesses that will become all too apparent. Limitations are frustrating, but the truly wise and brave persevere.

Think of the incredible scientist Stephen Hawking, who continues his genius-level work in the face of a paralysis that would defeat many others. Limitations are not barriers, they are speed bumps; most can be worked around. They require us to use creative thinking, and look for new ways to accomplish our goals.

You will make new friends, and some of the old ones will fade away. Regret their loss, but look upon the new as unread books, filled with adventure and wisdom. Practice team-building; two (or three, or 17) heads can be better than one.

Work hard, but please, remember to take time out for yourself: This is the only life you have, and it would be a shame to waste it on trivial tasks that have no payback. Weigh your choices and choose your battles; unless your goal is chaos, a little daily triage will make things much easier.

Learn as soon as possible to be self-reliant, but know when to ask for help as well. There is a fine line between independence and pig-headedness. No one among us is Superman or Wonder Woman, and falling on our face because we wouldn’t accept a helping hand only makes us look foolish.

This is a time to explore, to try new ideas and meet new challenges. Time is valuable; savor every moment, whether you are digging a garden or looking at clouds. Although it may not seem like it, every moment counts.

Plan for the future. If nothing else, the planning process will help to define what you value most. Plan for misfortune, too, so, when it comes, as it inevitably will, you will be ready to deal with it and then move forward.

Yes, money is important, but not the most important thing. As they say, nobody ever lay on their deathbed saying, “Gee; I wish I’d spent more time working.” Sometimes ice cream is as nourishing as oatmeal.

Ask for advice, and listen when it is given, but make your own choices; what is right for one person under one set of circumstance may not be right for you. Pay attention to experts: They have studied extensively in their particular field, but this is your life, your priorities, and your future. You set the goals, not the rest of the world.

Persevere, follow your dreams, and each day, try to do something to bring joy into the world and make it a better place. Good luck!

(Oh, and you high school and college grads, we wish you the best, too!)

Coming up

The month of July is National Blueberries Month, and National Doghouse Repairs Month

July 3 to 10 is Be Nice to New Jersey Week, Freedom Week, and Nude Recreation Week.

July 1 is United States Postage Stamp Day; the second is International Cherry Pit Spitting Day, Made In The USA Day, and World UFO Day. Bikini Day is July 5, and July 6 is Eid-Al-Fitr, the celebration at the end of Ramadan.  Collector Car Appreciation Day is the eighth, and Bald Is In Day is July 9.

The Lunch Program at the Hilltown Senior Center will begin chair yoga classes with Laurel on Friday, July 8. They will continue through July on the 15th, 22nd, and July 29th.

July 12, the presentation will be All About SNAP (Senior Nutrition Assistance Program).

On Wednesday, July 13, the Guardian Society presents a community forum titled “Aging and the Meaningful Life,” held at St. Sophia’s Church at 440 Whitehall Road in Albany. The forum will be from 8:30 a.m. to noon, and a continental breakfast precedes the forum.


Next week’s lunch menu for the Hilltown Senior Center is here, and, remember, we will be closed on Monday, the Fourth of July. With summer in full swing, if you could give us a hand for a couple of hours (especially on Friday), it would make a big difference!

The first Tuesday is our monthly birthday celebration, complete with cake! Come celebrate with us, and enjoy a lunch that you don’t have to cook.  Doors open at 11 a.m., and lunch is served promptly at noon.

— Monday, July 11: Lasagna roll-up with Marinara sauce, cauliflower, wheat bread, tropical fruit, and milk:

— Tuesday, July 12: Orange glazed chicken with Orzo pasta, roasted zucchini and tomato, apple juice, rye bread, tapioca pudding with whipped cream, and milk;

— Friday, July 14: Lemon pepper chicken, sautéed kale with tomatoes, garlic rosemary roasted potatoes, wheat bread, fresh pear, oatmeal cookie, and milk.

Please call Linda Hodges 24 hours in advance at (518) 872-0940 to reserve lunch, or email her at: , or sign up when you come in. Tell us how many are coming, your name, and your telephone number.  If you’d  like to come and help out, give Mary Moller a call at (518) 861-6253, or email her at , and put “volunteer” in the subject line.

Lunches are provided by Helderberg Senior Services, the Albany County Department of Aging, and Senior Services of Albany. The Hilltown Senior Center is located at 1360 Helderberg Trail (Route 443) in Berne.


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