News and information from our partners

Senior News: Holiday visits can be stressful

There is nothing quite like seeing snow on Christmas morning. For me, it is the one day when snow has a magical quality and I can feel like a child once again. But my wife and I won’t have that chance this year—we will be visiting our children over the holidays in California, where fifty degrees is the definition of freezing.

Ever since our children left the roost, we have always looked forward to visiting them: Learning how they are getting along (just fine without mom and dad!); checking out the coffee shops in their neighborhoods; and asking again “Exactly what do you do at work?“

But it can be a little stressful making sure I don’t spontaneously say something I’ll regret in front of their friends—or worse their “significant other”. Or worrying that the gifts we bought might not be something they will actually use.

And now there is one more thing I have to fret about: I have to pretend to be what I’m not, a spry 45-year-old.

I’m trying to prepare. I’ve been working on getting off the couch without groaning, eliminating anything from my conversations related to recent medical conditions, and making sure I know when my nose is dripping. Also, I have been concentrating on putting on my underwear without tipping over, keeping scary noises from emanating from my mouth while eating, and thinking of how to sneak in covert naps so I can stay up past my normal 9 p.m. bedtime and still avoid yawning at 10 in the morning or falling asleep in the early afternoon.

It’s not easy, but the charade is essential. The more my children think I am getting old, the more they will feel the need to “help” us old folks, deciding what my wife and I should be doing with the rest of our lives. (We’ll do just fine, thank you!)

Nonetheless, it will be a great visit because I know I can pretend for at least one week that I’m twenty-five years younger—I hope!

With the end of 2018 approaching, it’s your last chance to donate to your favorite nonprofits if you want to lessen your tax burden while supporting important community organizations. And this year, consider contributing to the Oregon Cultural Trust as well.

The Oregon Cultural Trust is an innovative public-private fundraising and grant-making program that funds local coalitions—including the Wasco County Cultural Trust Coalition, which annually distributes $500–$1,000 grants to area schools and non-profits. The Mid-Columbia Senior Center has been a recipient in the past.

If you make a donation to any of Oregon’s arts, heritage and humanities non-profits, including twenty-two in Wasco and Sherman Counties, and make a matching gift to the Cultural Trust, you can then claim your contribution to the Cultural Trust as a tax credit. The full list of eligible nonprofits is at

The Mid-Columbia Senior Center and Meals-on-Wheels will be closed on both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Also, several Center classes will not be meeting over the holidays, so call if you are not sure about your class.

The landmark film portraying two criminals who moved from small-time heists to robbing banks in the middle of the great depression was “Bonnie and Clyde,” starring Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway. I received correct answers from Diane Weston, Sue Ortega, Sandy Haechrel, Lana Tepfer, Kim Birge, Jeanne Pesicka, Cheri Brent and this week’s winner of a quilt raffle ticket, Rhonda Auskin. And last week, I missed Ruth Radcliff, Diana Weston, and Carol Earl, who back in the day had three different dates who all took her to see “Dr. Zhivago”!

The holiday season is an ideal time to watch some classic Christmas movies. Two of my favorites are the 1942 movie “Holiday Inn,” which introduced the classic Christmas song White Christmas (the best-selling single of all time), and the 1954 movie “White Christmas.” Both starred Bing Crosby with music by Irving Berlin.

Although it was not initially intended, Crosby had two different male costars in each of the two movies. For this week’s “Remember When” question, who were they? Email your answer to, leave a message at 541-296-4788 or write your answer on the back of a 1942 78 single release of “White Christmas” by Bing Crosby on Decca Records.

Well, it’s been another week trying to keep it simple. Until we meet again, have a very Merry Christmas!

“Gifts of time and love are surely the basic ingredients of a truly merry Christmas.”

—Peg Bracken


Thursday (20): Chicken Pot Pie (Music by Tom Graff)

Friday (21): Philly Beef with Sauté Onions and Mushrooms

Monday (24): Closed

Tuesday (25): Closed (MERRY CHRISTMAS!)

Wednesday (26): Hamburgers (Homemade Soup and Salad Bar)


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment


Information from The Chronicle and our advertisers (Want to add your business to this to this feed?)