Amazing Ashland Supporting Awesome Aging for BEES for a Healthy Ecosystem!

Lauren Trantham oversees honey tasting and voting

Grandma Boom tasting/voting/retasting: ya just have to be sure about the right vote :)

BEES! Ashland is Protecting them for a healthy ecosystem. Honey tasting/voting at Elks Lodge yesterday for the best in the valley. And, of course, a sweet woman was in charge of the sweet tasting/voting, Lauren Trantham, always ready to support good causes!

I sampled, voted and resampled! :) Thank you, City of Ashland, for supporting the BEES with your activism. Here’s a clip from Ashland’s BEE CITY website. So grateful Ashland is on top of the right priorities for a healthy environment!

“The City acknowledges the importance of pollinators to healthy ecosystems, as well as to agriculture and the local economy. Considering the dramatic declines in pollinator populations around the globe, Ashland commits to supporting bees and other pollinators on both public and private land. In order to enhance understanding among staff and the public about the vital role that pollinators play, and what each of us can do to sustain them, the City of Ashland agrees to establish and maintain a BEE CITY USA Subcommittee, comprised of one Parks & Recreation Commissioner, one Staff Liaison and at least three citizens.”

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Finger Labyrinth Good for All Ages

Labyrinths have always fascinated me. Walking a labyrinth brings a soothing sensation with deep contemplation. It serves to keep one’s mind focused on the present moment, also bringing a stronger conscious mind/body awareness alliance into focus.

Some theories say the centuries old technique harmonizes the hemispheres of the brain and brings mind and body into greater synchronization. Another thought is that by walking a labyrinth there is an unblocking of dynamics in order to reach clarity or find answers. Setting an intention in motion with body participation means there is a wholeness to the process of answer seeking and prayer focusing. The labyrinth brings an issue into the physical plane rather than staying in the mental plane’s thought forms.

In early August, when working with pre-K children, I provided them with a finger labyrinth. They used fingers as well as crayons and markers to follow the trail in the yellow sheet with a black labyrinth. In this case, the intention was to help young children focus their attention and create a sense of calm.

Students at the University of Oregon responded to my instructions to use the finger labyrinth to rest and refresh their minds by indicating it accomplished both of those in the middle of a busy day of studying.

Simple alternatives to being fully present and keeping the mind/body state more alert while relaxed are helpful keys to promoting a healthy and awesome aging process. Using a finger labyrinth in a group or with dyads exercise can prove to be a stimulus for an inspirational conversation.

Mind/body stimulants can be easily accessed within one’s internal home base. Finger labyrinths are but one way to delve inward and feel good.

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Reflections…A Tender Moment from Childhood with Lifelong Impact

It has become common to hear others talking about the negative impact of childhood. We’ve all had THOSE moments. And what we do with all of it fascinates me. The human mind is such an extraordinary landscape to explore.

In my reflections at 68, I chanced upon the photo with Mom holding my hand and that of my younger brother’s at Daytona Beach. It was 1952. I felt safe. It was fun to play with those waves. And the feeling lingered as our annual trek in the stationwagon, eventually, with four of us siblings, to Daytona was woven into my blood and my psyche. Playing in the waves was salvation. It was heaven. It was something I longed for all year while living in Kansas. It was always the highlight of my summer.

I am grateful for the connection with the ocean and for Mom insisting we go there every year. Enjoying seeing how I tapped that experience and kept it as a part of my life. It remains a part of my Awesome Aging journey. #lovinlifeisgreat@68

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REDTAIL INN “Eco-Boutique” Marries Historical Preservation and Environmental Care

The epitome of Awesome Aging rests in the heart of REDTAIL INN, now open to welcome visitors. This Ashland gem is the freshly restored historic home originally built by Jesse Applegate McCall in 1890 as an estate farm house. Today MaryAnn and Geoff Geness live their visionary passion to honor preservation of this historical landmark. With the most precious care to strengthen its presence in a noteworthy rebirthing, they have managed to captivate the spirit of the 1890′s while incorporating advanced leading edge enviornmental protection approaches.

Solar panels are coming soon; electric car charging awaits visitors; organic garden produce will delight guests; energy-saving, tank-less hot water heaters (endless hot showers!) and high efficiency heating/cooling systems and much more inhabit the property. The goal? To dramatically reduce the Inn’s consumption of fossil fuels…a big FIRST in southern Oregon.

A very special team created nothing short of a pioneering attitude that leads the way for what is possible – bringing the past and the best of today’s world together in an ideal marriage. MaryAnn’s delightful, meticulous creativity brought an exquisite taste of decor in every element of this heartfelt welcoming home. Geoff’s skilled eye and hand artistic expressions in building and restoring give that touch of love and respect of something worthy. Renowned restorationist, Steve Asher, provided Chief Executive rehabilitation with the historical presence and modern comfort that can be felt as one enters this treasured Inn. Daniel Perry-Kesling, Innkeeper extraordinaire, brings an enveloping welcome to all who make reservations through his proficient and acclaimed AirHop company.

On July 21, Ashland’s Chamber of Commerce embraced the wonders of RedTail Inn while being hosted there and learning more about the noteworthy accomplishments in giving a renewed life to this historic landmark. The website is a ‘must visit’ for much more information. While RedTail Inn continues to become a prized presence in Ashland, we can all celebrate another landmark that will bring only praise from the community as well as from tourists.

Thank you, Geoff and MaryAnn. We appreciate your steadfast, heartfelt commitment to history, the environment and Ashland.

You will enjoy learning more at the website:

OPEN HOUSE July 24, 5-8 p.m.

Live Music, Wine (from Paschal Winery), and Food (from Chef Saudia Sharkey).

The address is 550 East Main Street, Ashland… between the Fire House and Cucinna Biazzi!

550 East Main Street
Ashland, Oregon 97520
MAIN: (877) 411-5545

July 21 Chamber of Commerce Meeting Hosted by REDTAIL INN


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“YOU Won a Ribbon, Grandma Boom?” Keeping Those Young Whippersnappers in Awe….

Every year my grandchildren are in awe that I win a ribbon in the July Fourth Ashland parade. This year it was First Place in the Adult Entries. The blue ribbon looks quite lovely as the sixth in a row on the chest of drawers in my bedroom.

My grandchildren are learning that being an older woman does not mean I have to stop having fun, winning awards and exerting myself even though I am bionic (total hip replacement surgery, rod from knee to ankle in same leg, screws in one foot). They pick up the ribbons, three second place and three first place, and literally stare at them, look at me, then put them down with continued staring. I smile heartily.

Not only do I feel like Awesome Aging is a great focus for my own ongoing evolution as a human being, but tapping more of my human potential sets a great example for my grandchildren. Of course, we all will take on aging in the ways that fit our personas best. Mine just happens to include loving being in a parade flying down the street in zig-zag fashion to wave my wings over the children on the curbs, creating magic for them.

I am tired, hot and thirsty at the end of the parade because I run the entire route. S t r e t c h e d to the max! And I am also very happy, content and excited that another year, another parade and another ribbon are under my aging belt. I love being a fun example of an elder in this human tribe! Those young whippersnappers are always observing us, learning what may or may not be possible in their own aging process…..which is going to arrive before they know it. Why not give ‘em a run for their own Awesome Aging processes!!!!! #lovinlifeisgreat@68

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When Stress Tried to Take Control…….Dancing on the Beach!

Stress: part of life for everyone. Antidote: Skills, tools, laughter and fun to counter balance and not be self-victimizing.

Stress hit in major amounts recently. My choice was to either succumb and buckle under trying to cope or be pro-active. Listening to my body signals, it’s easy to tell when I start to give in and let stress tension overwhelm me. Not my choice this past week.

Took the day off, went to the beach with a friend, had fun hiking in the redwoods and knew I had to dance on the beach. The endorphines created were so uplifting that just recalling that dance to Earth, Wind and Fire on the cell phone immediately uplifts me.

It pays in my aging process to continue to find ways to make it awesome. I’m sure there will be more tests and opportunities on this journey at 68. So being committed to having more fun and using my stress skills is exactly what the inner well being doctor ordered! #lovinlifeisgreat@68

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When Criminals Protected Me…..Deep Seated Memories

When Criminals Protected Me….. I was in my twenties, working on my Master’s Degree. Teaching relaxation techniques and imagery skills to criminals living in a halfway house was volunteer work I felt purpose in doing, as well as baking for them. I took a half-time Director position at that time with Teen Outreach. It was situated in a church basement with alley access that serviced youth who were high risk. No one ever stayed more than 2 weeks in that job. The teens had a reputation of getting rid of anyone in two weeks or less, leaving the Board of Directors at their wits end. I was offered the job and committed to stay for one year regardless of anything. That was met with raised eyebrows as though I was too naive to understand what I was getting into.

The first evening on duty the teens threw glass coca cola bottles at my head as I rode my bicycle to work. The second night my bicycle got a surprise flat tire. Name calling was the very least of offenses. Threats decorated with extreme profanity became normal. Each time something occurred, I responded with one sentence. “I am staying for one year.” It threatened their 2 week record. They tried everything in the book to make me want to quit. One evening they were certain I would walk away.

Resources in the church basement were humble. There was one bathroom with a thick wooden door and a double lock on the interior side of the bathroom door. Getting close to the two week deadline, the desperate teens managed to crash open that double locked door when I was peeing. Their royal HEAVE HO included heavier boys and some girls. They literally caught me with my pants down! They were quite smitten with their efforts, feeling very confident they would never see me again. But I pulled up my pants, flushed, and walked out of the bathroom to see them all laughing, standing together in anticipation of my anger and withdrawal.

I scanned the crowd looking at each one of them with direct eye contact as I slowly and deliberately stated in a calm but firm voice, “I AM STAYING FOR ONE YEAR!!!” Oh my….you should have seen their faces drop from happy-go-lucky to shocking disappointment. What they had done to me in that bathroom was worse than any acts they had performed on any other directors in the past. And it didn’t work. It was after that night’s trauma when the criminals I was doing volunteer work with decided to start escorting me to work every night and returning to walk me home after work.
It was quite the scene when they began protecting me because they were all from that same geographic area and the teens knew who they were. What really struck my funny bone was that the at-risk youth were acting like wanna-be criminals but they were no match for the real deal…..the criminals who became my protectors!

I was not only committed, I really cared for those troubled youth. I knew they had deep seated problems as well as needs to feel cared for. It was a turning point that brought openness and communication on their part once they realized I really was staying for one year. And the majority of them quit messing with trying to harm me once my criminal protectors became my escorts. Such an ironic circumstance! And, yes, I did stay for one year and they begged me to stay longer when I had to quit because I received a graduate assistantship. I did not have enough time to continue with the Director position of Teen Outreach. I missed them a great deal. So much learning took place on my part and I remain grateful for that opportunity. And the fact that criminals protected me from wanna-be criminals still tickles me to no end. What irony! And what rich threads in the fabric of my life as I age and reflect on what has held the greatest meaning for me in seeing who I am and who I can continue to be. Weaving special memories into my awesome aging cloak satisfies and nourishes. #lovinlifeisgreat@68

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Focus Span Decreasing: Let’s Get It UP!


Goldfish are beating us with focus of attention. Research has shown they can hold a focus for 9 seconds and we humans are registering in at an average of 8 seconds. Satya Nadella, Chief Exec. Officer of Microsoft stated that “The true scarce commodity of the near future will be human attention.”

As our attention span shrinks primarily due to digital overstimulation and addiction, the same trend is having impact on the young minds in our country. In 2000 children were able to hold a focus on one thing for 12 seconds. In 2016, 8 seconds holds the average record.

6.4 million children in the U.S. right now suffer from ADHD. The cost of ADHD in the U.S. annually is $52 billion. I like imagining what we could do with that money if we helped children to learn how to focus on one thing at a time for longer periods of time.

I am taking some steps as Grandma Boom teaching Superkid Power Skills to children as young as 3. This week when working with a group of preschoolers dressed as a pirate, I used a toilet paper roll to show them how to focus on one thing at a time. For example, a pirate looking for land from his ship is only focusing on that one thing. Doing a variety of techniques with the holistic approach of being tactile, visual, experiential, the children were saturated with fun ways to FOCUS. Only a few seconds to begin with, but practice in fun ways means those seconds will stretch to be longer with attention span. As adults we can do simple things to focus our attention, one thing at a time….and time ourselves. Can we hold our own focus of attention long enough to beat out the goldfish? Let’s get it up!

One of the things that is awesome in my aging process is being continually creative as an elder of the human tribe to keep opening myself to new techniques to help children learn self-help skills. Funny thing is that as I help them develop SUPERKID POWER SKILLS, I seem to be growing quite a bit myself as a big SUPERKID.

When people ask why I call it ‘SUPERKID POWER’ I respond by sharing that I believe every single child deserves to FEEL like a SUPERKID and that happens not by the brand of clothes they wear, but by having skills to self-manage with their own inner resources of mental thoughts, emotional feelings and body tensions levels. Learning to act instead of react, develop emotional intelligence and manage stress from the inside out means a solid foundation for self-care and self-confidence leading to self-control is readily available to every child. Why not? WHY. NOT!
#lovinlifeisgreat@68 #passionisasuperfuel

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Thank You, Starseed Foundation, for a Grant to Empower Superkids

Teaching self-calming to preschoolers with deep breathing

It is a very happy Awesome Aging day when a new chapter can be written
in my life book. The Starseed Foundation has generously provided a
grant for funding The Conscious Living Foundation (non profit, tax exempt
501(c)3. the filming of seven themes educating children as young as
3 years about self-help skills. This work will soon be available online
in video form for children to view, learn and experience techniques,
jingles, songs and skills.

With the growing number of children and youth suffering from mental health issues, it is imperative to teach children at a young age how to be mentally and emotionally healthy. The Center for Disease Control and National Institute for Mental Health have declared 50% of all children and youth in the U.S. suffer from some form of mental health issues. There is a lag between onset and treatment of 8 to 10 years. And then 75% of the cases are not resolved. Time, energy, money are wasted, not to mention the unnecessary suffering in their lives and those who love them.

Downloads will be available for teachers and parents to
be informed about reinforcement methods for the skills. This
enables and empowers the family and classroom systems to
support the child’s integration of skills as well as providing ways
for the caring adults to experience new ways to interact that build
health and relationshps.

Learning self-calming at a young age establishes an awareness to be able
to develop self-management and self-control in switching gears
from tense to calm. It creates the foundation for actualizing inner
world resources leading to the ability to act rather than react, the
awareness to know when tension is mounting and reduce it rather
than become a victim of out-of-control tension/anxiety/anger/negative
emotions. Confidence and building integrity are natural results which
lead to a healthier life. Improved academic achievement and good
relationships are also benefits of learning stress coping skills.

When children have fun learning how they can make good choices
that improve mental/emotional health, they tend to
become more mindful of the empowerment that can be tapped
from inside them anytime, anywhere. They learn they have
a choice of how they handle themselves regardless of what
others are doing or what the circumstances can bring outside
them. It is a wonderful experience to know we always have a
choice even if we cannot control what is going on around us.
This simple accomplishment can mean the difference between
a life ilved in unnecessary suffering feeling victimized and blaming
others for what one feels or building a life that feels worthy, strong,
purposeful and happy from the inside-out. It is a life that is filled
being able to generate more love and compassion, kindness and

Time for a change. Children can help bring the change when we
help them know how to do it. And then they become an empowered part of
the positive change so direly needed/ EMPOWERING SUPERKIDS….every child deserves to have the right to feel like a SUPERKID. The way that happens is to
give children skills that strengthen their own inner worlds.

The Conscious Living Foundation is so deeply grateful for this grant
to film the beginning of the themed sessions with lessons that give
life building skills to children as young as three years old. Thank you,
Starseed Foundation. Your gift will keep on giving and giving.

Visit The Conscious Living Foundation Facebook page. Website is being developed.

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Trying New Things Essential for Awesome Aging….Like Whole Body Dipping into Snow Melt River

Courage. It took courage…to go from soaking in hot mineral waters to sauna into a snow melt river with whole body dipping….well, courage and telling my heart to keep beating is what was required. Sounds from my gasping mouth were part of the ritual. Refreshing….that’s an understatement! Great for the immune system! And I survived!

Stewart Mineral Springs is such a special destination….completely designed to enhance health and well being. Dr. Emoto’s research team scientifically tested the water crystals stating it is one of the most powerful healing water locations on the planet. In fact, there are only two locations on earth where the male and female spring come up out of the ground next to each other….considered sacred and balancing by many cultures. One is in Glastonbury and the other near Weed, Calif., at Stewart Mineral Springs. #lovinlifeisgreat@68 #tryingnewthingsessentialforawesomeaging

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