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Catch Yourself - Fall Prevention to Maintain Your Independence
Sept 9, 12, 16, 19
11:00 am-12:30 pm 
This four-session series raises awareness about falls by practicing techniques in class. Learn how to improve your strength and balance, simplify your environment, and identify fall risks. Classes will cover home safety strategies, exercise techniques, medication management, and more.
Check the calendar for registration details.
Ruth McCahan shares her perspective on Chair Yoga
Barbara is a wonderful, attentive yoga instructor. She provides modifications to poses to allow everyone to feel comfortable in participating.

I thoroughly enjoy learning about yoga at each class.

July-August 2016
It's that wonderful time of year when summer is in full Anne Ornelas swing and there is a lot of activity going on in our communities. Both members and friends of Lamorinda Village have been attending our weekly Brain Enrichment courses held at Eldercare Services and they are loving it! David and Julia White, Village members from Moraga, [pictured below 2 nd and 3 rd from left in front row] have "enjoyed the challenging activities to keep our brains sharp."
Brain Enrichment Class
I'm excited to tell you about some wonderful collaborations we have been working on with John Muir Health and Lafayette Senior Services. As you know, Lamorinda Village has a community partnership with John Muir Health and we have been working with their Senior Services and Wellness teams to develop a new program for full members of the Village, called MedPal.
What is a MedPal? They are specially trained volunteers who support you at your doctor's appointment by:
  • Formulating questions with you before your appointment
  • Taking notes during your appointment

This program is in development and we will be looking for interested persons to join our MedPal Volunteer team. If you have an interest in helping members make the most out of their doctor or hospital visits, you can be a MedPal; it does not require formal medical or related training. Please contact us by email at if you are interested.
Our relationship with Lafayette Senior Services (LSS) is blooming! If you are a Village member and are not already taking advantage of the great programs and activities offered through LSS, let us know and we will make sure you're added to the LSS membership and receiving their quarterly activity guide. Also, we are working on several joint activities such as monthly lunch outings and an emergency preparedness program for this Fall.

Best regards
Congratulations to Village Members
Some of our Village volunteers helped out at last month's Annual Orinda Three-Quarter Century Club luncheon. Hosted by John Fazel and held at the Orinda Community Church annually for the last 17 years, it is a fun event to celebrate the longevity of our community.

Pictured below are Village members Lily and Raim Regelson who received the King and Queen recognition for their marriage of 62 years! We were so glad to see a great turnout and Village members Bea Heggie and Janet Pease, as well as Carole and Andy Amstutz.
three-quarter century award ceremony  
Volunteer Profile: Lynn Bosworth
Lynn Bosworth's passion for taking care of others led her to become a Lamorinda Village volunteer. As a volunteer she wants to be involved any way she can, whether it Lynn Bosworth is doing in-home visits to get to know members, or going to museums, lunch, or taking walks with them.
Lynn grew up in the greater Chicago area and has lived in Southern California, Houston, Washington, D.C., and Detroit. She treasures the memories of moving to each location because it took her out of her comfort zone and made her more adaptable to new situations.
One of her fondest memories was being at our nation's capital. "That was a special time for me," said Lynn. She was able to see all the historic monuments and locations, such as Lincoln Memorial, Mt. Vernon, and The White House.
She first visited Southern California on vacation, when she made the bold decision to quit her job and move there. "Staying there felt so right and California just felt like home," she said. "That was my favorite place to live and I have lived in many places." She loves the people, diversity, and everything else about the state.
For the past nine years she has maintained a job at UCSF Medical Center. She also volunteers for a nonprofit nursing facility in Berkeley. Lynn's hope for Lamorinda Village is to recruit more members and watch the Village thrive.
--Alex Lauderdale
Adults Love to Learn and OLLI is Here to Help
Are you interested in opera? Or maybe the 50-year history of country-rock? How about the birth of American literature or the role of the media in peacetime and war? Biomedical ethics?
OLLI logo

The Berkeley branch of the nationwide Osher Lifelong Learning Institute offers more than 90 courses a year on topics like these and many more, taught by university professors, subject matter experts, and local artists. OLLI is a non-credit educational program for lifelong learners age 50 and above, with classroom locations in Lafayette and Berkeley.
Lamorinda Village members have taken classes in dance in film, world history, music, and international political issues. Some programs feature travel to locations like France, Cuba, Italy, or Spain, in cooperation with Road Scholars (formerly known as Elderhostel) and Cal Adventures.

Village members Skip and Maureen Bradish have been OLLI enthusiasts since 2008.  "OLLI is l earning for learning's sake," says Skip. "There are no exams, grades, papers, or thesis. Yet it is stimulating, active, and participatory, and delivers a broad array of courses, topics, and exploration of new areas. You get to explore those topics you never had a chance to in undergraduate, graduate, or professional programs."

Skip and Maureen have delved into topics that include aging, climate change, the role of the Supreme Court, and Paris Through the Ages. They like the ease of access to classrooms in both Lafayette and Berkeley and they plan to continue as students, members, and active volunteers in the OLLI community.

Summer classes are already underway, but you can find out more about this creative learning opportunity at , and look for the OLLI at the Senior Symposium on August 6. Fall course registration begins on July 11; the fall courses will be highlighted on September 8 at an Information Session at the Lafayette Library and Learning Center.
Questions and Answers About the Village
Q: Where is your office? Is someone there at all times?
A: The Lamorinda Village office is located at 49 Knox Drive, Lafayette. Our executive director, Anne Ornelas, and a team of volunteers staff the office, with drop-ins welcome on Monday-Friday from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm. You can also phone the office any time between 9:00 am and 5:00 pm Monday-Friday, or email us at If you contact us by phone or email outside of office hours, we will respond as soon as possible.
Q: What if I want to stay in Lamorinda but not in my current home? Does the Village have someone who can help?
A: Moving out of the home where you have lived for many years is a daunting challenge. Fortunately, there are professionals and volunteers who can help. We have referrals to professional downsizing and moving consultants as well as local real estate agents, and for full Village members, volunteers can help with decluttering and organizing your household when you are ready to move.
Health and Fitness: On Your Way to the Doctor's Office?
PBS's NextAvenue program has published a terrific list of 10 things you should ALWAYS take with you to every medical appointment. Experts believe it can make a critical difference in the care you receive.

Here's a brief summary of the list from NextAvenue; for details, check the website at
  • Your medical history card, even if you are sure the doctor has this information.
  • Any recent changes to your medical history, such as new test results or information on visits with other specialists.
  • Your prescription drugs, so you can discuss any changes.
  • A list of any non-prescription supplements you take and non-medical therapies you are following.
  • A journal of any symptoms you are experiencing.
  • A written list of questions for the doctor.
  • A friend or family member to help you prepare for the visit, listen and take notes during the visit, and help ensure you are clear about any information or instructions you receive.*
  • Your smartphone, if you have one, for waiting times, scheduling appointments, and researching medical issues.
  • Snacks -- if allowed -- because you may get hungry while you are waiting!
 *Look for more news soon about our collaboration with John Muir Health to provide a MedPal to accompany you to medical appointments, described by Anne in her greeting at the top of this newsletter.


Bridges Over Troubled Waters
Over 12,000 congregations from 170 different Christian denominations in 26 countries recently celebrated 40 years of Stephen Ministry care for individuals within their communities, and several churches within Contra Costa County were among them, including Lafayette-Orinda Presbyterian Church.
Stephen Ministers are supervised lay persons, trained in one-on-one emotional and spiritual crisis-care, which is provided at no cost and on a strictly confidential basis. They are skilled and committed caregivers who meet weekly with their care receivers. "They listen, care, pray, support, and encourage those who are hurting, and for as long as there is a need," says Kathleen Hallock at the Lafayette-Orinda Presbyterian Church.
Care receivers can be from inside or outside a Stephen Minister's congregation and a Christian or not. Many are struggling with the death of a loved one, separation or divorce, domestic conflict or alienation, financial setbacks and job loss, aging, terminal illness, disability concerns, faith issues, pregnancy and adoption, anxiety, and loneliness.
We all have challenges in our lives which are difficult to transition. Often it is helpful to speak confidentially with an objective person who will walk with us during those times. If you know of someone who would benefit from a Stephen Minister's care, you are welcome to contact the Lafayette-Orinda Presbyterian Church at 925-283-8722 or to obtain a caregiver there or a referral to another participating church.

--Elizabeth Masten

Tips on Designing an Exercise Routine -- and Sticking To It
We know plenty about the health benefits of exercise. For example, exercise can help you to:
  • Maintain or improve physical strength and fitness.
  • Keep doing everyday activities that are important to you, like driving, carrying groceries, and playing with grandchildren.
  • Have better balance and prevent falls and fractures.
  • Manage and improve diseases like diabetes, heart disease, and osteoporosis.
Stick figures exercising

Exercise can also support emotional health by helping to reduce feelings of depression and stress as well as lift your mood and overall well-being.  But if you aren't already exercising regularly, how do you know where to start?  And how do you get past "I don't feel like it today"?

The National Institutes of Health has some ideas. You can find information about the benefits of exercise, staying safe, and making a plan, on the website at
Lamorinda Village | |
P.O. Box 57
Lafayette, CA 94549