Neighbors Helping Neighbors Age in Place 
Newsletter of
Northeast Village PDX  
Northeast Village PDX is a group of neighbors in Northeast Portland, Oregon, who are creating a membership organization that will help seniors in the area stay in their own homes as they age - by providing volunteers to help with rides, simple home repairs,  friendly visits, and light yard work, as well as professional services (plumbing, electrical, care giving and others). This newsletter will keep you up to date on the steps the Village is taking to achieve its goals.
July/August -- In This Issue:

Introduction to NE Village 
The  July  Village Introduction is scheduled for  Saturday, July 21st from 1 to 2:30 at the Hollywood Library, 4040 NE 

Anyone interested in learning about the Village movement in general, and the Northeast Village PDX in particular is urged to attend.  No reservations are necessary.
New Northeast Village Circles Forming  
Would you like to get to know a few of your fellow Villagers better? Each Northeast Village Circle has 6 to 10 members who meet informally. Each Circle decides what they will do - e.g. share a meal, have coffee, watch a documentary, discuss an article - and how often they will meet.
One or two new Village Circles will be forming soon. If you are would like to participate, call the NEV office at 503-895-2750 or email: by July 10, and we will put you in touch with others who are interested.
Dining Out with NE Village
Dining out the first Thursday of each month is a great way to get to know fellow Villagers, as well as sampling the cuisine at several good restaurants on Portland's east side. Enjoy conversation over food and wine while trying out a variety of modestly priced ethnic foods. 
Past culinary adventures include Italian food at Casa Italiana on Division; authentic Northern Chinese cooking at Chin's Kitchen at NE 41st and Broadway; and fish, meat, salad, dessert and wine at  Petit Provence on NE Alberta. A visit to the Toji Korean Grill House on Hawthorne Boulevard offered delicious grilled meat but limited conversation with other members due to the elaborate cooking protocol.
To find out more about the next restaurant and make a reservation, contact Ann Anderson at .   
On the Town: Pizzeria Otto
This diminutive eatery opened not long ago about three blocks from where I live. One day when I was hungry after a walk, I stopped in for a $6 margherita, a whole pizza, their lunch special. It was good but I didn't return right away. Pizza isn't at the top of my list.
Then I brought a group of friends in for lunch. We had one of their specials and were awed by the paper-thin crust, crisped to glory in the woodburning oven and saturated with an artful palette of authentic ingredients, some in Italian. We enjoyed the side salad, which was a meal in itself, and the asparagus cooked al dente, drizzled with sauce that was beyond good.
No wonder the Oregonian named this place at the corner of NE 67 thand Sandy as one of the two best pizzerias in Portland. There isn't a lot of seating, and last time I was there it was a full house at 3 in the afternoon. Needless to say, I have returned more than once. Pizzeria Otto keeps getting better and busier as the owners refine their culinary offerings and the word gets out. Plus, it's only three blocks away. Uh-oh, this could be habit forming.
Pat Vivian
Programs & Events
Check our Calendar of Events for a complete listing of our Programs & Events.

The Following Programs are Open to ALL


Chamber Music Northwest will have an  open rehearsal of Nokuthula Ngwenyama's Primal Message for viola  quintet. 
Date and Time: Thursday July 5. Arrive by 10:40 am -   rehearsal runs from 11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Place: Kaul Auditorium, Reed College, 3203 SE Woodstock Blvd.
Reed's West parking lot is closest to the auditorium. Enter lot from SE
28th Avenue, between SE Woodstock Blvd. and Botsford Drive.

No reservation required.


On this month's walk, we will enjoy the breezes at the Willamette Falls  and take an easy stroll around historic Oregon City. The complete walk  is about 4 flat miles with an elevator down to the falls. For those who prefer a shorter walk, there are many places to stop and have coffee and later rejoin the walkers for lunch.

Date and Time: Monday July 9, 10:00 am - 1:00 pm (approx.)
Meet at the McLoughlin House, 713 Center St. in Oregon City,
after parking on nearby streets.

Reservation required: Please reply to the NEV office at 503-895-2750  or if you plan to attend. 


Celebrate the summer with a cool beverage - and do good at the same  time. Profits from the Oregon Public House are used to support local  charities. 

Date and Time: Thursday July 19, 4:00-6:00 pm
Oregon Public House, 700 NE Dekum

No reservation required.
Volunteers Hold Spring Yard Cleanup Parties

 Can you spot the Possum?

Are you enjoying the Portland blossom season this year? Eight member households can appreciate the beauty of their yards more after a team of Village volunteers did spring cleanup.
The first yard work party took place under rainy skies in April. An intrepid group of volunteers got the job done anyway. In another yard, a volunteer leaned in to prune some branches and found a shy possum (see above).
Several members enthusiastically joined the volunteers to participate in the cleanup, working alongside volunteers as they weeded, raked, pruned and filled the yard debris can. The Village extends a hearty thanks to all volunteers who participated in the yard work parties - some worked in several yards. In addition, Bill Roberts and Michelle Ferroggiaro helped make the parties a success by meeting with each member beforehand to determine the tasks volunteers would do.
Spring cleanup parties are over for now, but they will be back. We are evaluating the things we learned this spring so we can improve the process next time. Stay tuned for information about yard work parties as soon as next fall.
Thanks to these volunteers for rolling up their sleeves:
Louesa Isett   
Pete Carr
Susan Terry
Betsy Radigan
Sue Carr
Kimberly Williams
Bill Roberts
Susan Gilson
April Kayser
David Kuch
Silvia Larco
Craig Lindsay
Michelle Ferroggiaro
Anne Lindsay

Yard Party at Robinson's
Want to Write a Memoir?
Have you been thinking about documenting your life story while you still can, but you're not sure how to do it? Would you like to create a memoir for people to know you better by, but you don't consider yourself a writer?
Glennis McNeal, 80, a professional writer with a lifetime of storytelling experience, recently gave Northeast and North Star Village members an array of choices, ideas and inspiration to get started on a "mini-memoir."
"Think of ways to tell your story in such a brief, simple form that even people who don't like to read will read it," McNeal advised. There are many ways to convey your experience. Something as simple as putting Christmas letters in a binder will create a personal chronology, or you could collect favorite quotes.
What do you most want people to know about you? If you plan to write your story, McNeal suggests starting small. Forget thinking the end product will be a thick, dry tome beginning with Day 1. Short episodes that elicit feeling are more likely to hold a reader's attention. Think in terms of individual topics or chapters that get your storytelling juices going - your best or worst job, most memorable time in school, places you've lived, unique experiences that stand out in your memory.
Once you've chosen a topic, jot down at least five facts about it. A librarian can help you research the historical context, such as the cost of a gallon of gas. Sites like are useful sources of census records.
You'll learn about yourself as you write, McNeal emphasized. A series of mini-memoirs could be combined into a book. If the memoir is intended for family and friends, it's fine to pull things off the internet with a written caveat that the book is not to be sold or copied. However, if you're going to sell the finished product, you must get permission to use any copyrighted material such as song lyrics, which can be difficult to obtain.
NE Village does not have a plan at present to support members in writing their memoirs - but you could change that. Any member or volunteer who wants to organize a memoir writers' group should contact the NE Village office. Members could read each other's draft memoirs and exchange inspiration. If you're interested in taking the lead on this, let us know and we'll publicize it in an upcoming newsletter.

  The Nuts and Bolts of Vetting a Construction Contractor

It's summer, hammers are pounding, and home improvement season is on. If you're taking bids to have construction work done on your home, an important step is making sure the contractor you hire is licensed, bonded and insured before you sign a contract.

Early on, NE Village decided against officially vetting contractors because it's challenging to keep track of when individual licenses and insurance policies expire. But you can check this easily yourself by Googling the Oregon Construction Contractors Board website (or calling the CCB at 503-378-4621).

If you use Angie's List, or a NE Village referral (which means only that a Village member recommended the contractor), you should also check the CCB website for current licensing information. The easiest way to look up a contractor's record is by entering the license number (usually on the business card or bid) in the search box. You can also search by name or phone number.

Once you locate the company's CCB record, click "Learn more about this business" to see whether they have current insurance and are bonded. Check expiration dates. Workers' compensation insurance protects you if a worker is injured, liability insurance protects you if the contractor does damage, and the bond protects you if the company fails to fulfill its financial obligations (such as not finishing the job). If you end up filing a claim against the company and the CCB rules in your favor, the bond could be used to pay your claim.

The CCB website will also tell you whether the contractor has any unpaid claims, civil penalties, or complaints filed against them. It lists other licenses the contractor holds, such as lead-based paint remediation (required for homes built before 1978), plumbing and electrical work.

Prior CCB suspensions for lack of insurance are common and shouldn't be a deal-breaker as long as the contractor will be fully licensed, bonded and insured at the time your job is performed.

On the Nightstand: Books About Aging 

What things change as we "age in place"? The body, the mind, relationships, income, socialization, health, ultimately our hold on life.
These authors have contemplated aging deeply, mainly in the Anglo-American world. The author's age when the book was published is listed after the name.
This is the first installment of a series of mini-reviews of books that address aging. If you have books to add to this list, email Nona Glazer at for inclusion in a future newsletter.
Simone de Beauvoir (62), The Coming of Age, 1970. De Beauvoir initiated widespread (but often ignored) attention to old age in the 20 th century. This landmark book by the French philosopher surveys anthropological and historical materials. It portrays the vicissitudes of old age in 20th century capitalist countries.

Diana Athill (91), Somewhere Towards the End, 2008. A book editor (for Updike, de Beauvoir, Mailer and more) reflects on her independent, adventurous life. She violated conventional rules and roles with great pleasure and satisfaction, and dealt with sorrows, too.

Lillian Rubin (85), 60 on Up: The Truth about Aging in the 21st Century, 2007. A psychotherapist and sociologist mixes her life experiences with observations of our youth cult, the American horror of death, the common disdain for the old in everyday life and in the media, and neglectful government policies. Despite the seriousness of the issues, it's an easy read.
Daniel Klein (73), Travels with Epicurus, 2012. A widely published American visits a fondly remembered Greek island to contemplate with delight, Epicurus, his own late years and watches old Greek men enjoy life.   A delightful short book.
Margaret Morganroth Gullette (69), Agewise - Fighting the New Ageism in America, 2011. Wide ranging essays on America's aging population - suicide, Katrina, sex and hormone nostalgia, the "decline ideology," cosmetic surgery, economic neglect, and other facets of contemporary aging.
Carolyn Heilbrun (70), The Last Gift of Time, 1997. A literature professor, biographer, essayist (and as Amanda Cross, a mystery novelist) tells us how her aging brings a need for solitude, as she reflects on her difficulties in life as a woman academic. She also recalls her friendships, regrets, and many satisfactions.
Amanda Cross (various ages), a series of mystery novels. Carol Heilbrun, professor of literature and widely published scholar, wrote many mystery novels under the pseudonym Amanda Cross, imbued with critical views of growing older in America. Heilbrun intended to take her life at age 70 to avoid old age in what she viewed as a difficult world. She finally did so at age 77.
- Nona Glazer
PLEASE NOTE: The opinions expressed in this review column are those of the author, not NE Village PDX.
CALL FOR REVIEWS: Have you read a book you'd like to share with fellow villagers? Visited a restaurant that's become your current favorite? Write up your thoughts (200-450 words is plenty) and send them to .
Village Boundaries
Northeast Village PDX is a member of the Villages NW tax-exempt network.

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