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Jo’s Jotting: Good week for food, talks on riding therapy, hospice care

By Jo Ellen Dale

At the regular meeting of the Richmond Kiwanis Club April 16, a very interesting program was given by Lisa Keys, who represents the Northland Therapeutic Riding Center located in Kearney.  This non-profit organization is a special program aimed at children and adults with special needs.  She pointed out that this unique therapy uses the movements of a horse to encourage similar movement responses in humans.  In the question-and- answer section following her talk, she further stated that one of the benefits even for hearing impaired people is that it instills self-confidence and encourages them to take part in life.  There is a need for volunteers as side walkers, horse leaders, horse handlers and for barn projects. With my own hearing disability, I first thought she said that she would talk about writing therapy which is actually another valuable tool for the group.
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Thursday evening I attended the performance of the Tommy Dorsey  Band at the Farris Theatre.  It was a walk down memory lane for me as I listened to the old, familiar songs and I relived “the way we were.”  The excellent musicians played the songs exactly as the original band had and the riffs by soloists rivaled anything I have heard.  The leader gave us a few historical notes as well as playing and singing himself.  He mentioned that the youngest member, 22, slapped the bass fiddle in 1940s style.  All the players were great but I especially liked the drummer and the pianist.  Got plenty of exercise too as it was impossible to sit still and listen the beat.
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Friday I was invited to attend Rotary Club again and the program was very interesting. Rev. Bill Purcell, chaplain at Shirkey, spoke of the non-profit organization, Shirkey Hospice & Palliative Care.  He began by explaining that hospice care is not designed to help someone die but to help them live fully the life they have left.  This means providing comfort to address pain management, compassion bringing healing to the mind and soul, dignity honoring the patient’s desires and those of the family.  The mission of Shirkey Hospice & Palliative Care he says is to provide comprehensive care to those with life-limiting illness and the philosophy is that everyone has the right to experience a dignified and peaceful passing in a  homelike setting. Many of us there had family members who had been helped enormously by the group.  Rev. Purcell passed out other brochures to help us understand.
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Friday evening I attended the Mason’s fish fry and enjoyed the fish and sweet potato fries as always.  Again the servings were so large that I took some home to enjoy the  next day and because I was not very hungry having had a good lunch at the 19th Hole at noon.
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This was definitely another week with many good opportunities for eating out. Saturday I went to the biscuits and gravy breakfast put on by the patrons of Gabriela’s Garden as a fundraiser. Although I am not a fan of gravy as I have said before, on request the server dipped out large chunks of sausage for me which was very good. Some day soon I may be forced to eat in.
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Later I took part in the Drive 4 Ur School put on by Swafford Ford and really liked the Focus.  This is a great fundraiser for our school system and I, for one, applaud Swafford’s for it.  I have driven my Taurus for many years and find it to be an excellent car for me.
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On Sunday I went out to the 19th Hole for lunch and a wonderful surprise was waiting for me.  My son Chuck and two of my grandsons, Chris and Jeff, appeared and I could hardly believe my eyes.  They were there to have a game of golf as well as visit with me. After their game, we had a tasty meal at the Tequila-Jalisco restaurant.  My grandson, Jeff especially enjoyed it as he speaks fluent Spanish.  He is working on a Ph.D at MU in microbiology and spent 8 weeks in Costa Rica in the jungle studying microbes.  He stayed with a family and learned the language.  Grandson Chris spent the night with me before returning to Arkansas.  It was definitely my lucky day.
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I’d like to remind you all that my church, United Christian Presbyterian Church, still has a number of prom dresses available at either very low or no cost. It’s a wonderful program that passes on lightly worn dresses to girls who might not otherwise be able to afford a new one. Ask for Jill Pence at the church and she can help out.

Please keep sending your news, DaleDbdale@aol.com

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