June 2020
Women in Transition Workshop
Saturday, September 26
This highly interactive workshop defines what it means to be in transition, and helps you explore your own transitions through small group discussion. Provocative questions stimulate conversation to expand your horizons and energize and support you on your journey.
This 4-hour signature TTN program has been presented to TTN chapters from coast to coast. It was offered in Minneapolis/St. Paul in October, 2018. Prior attendees have offered this about the workshop:
  • “Loved the action steps, applicable exercises. Much value in a short workshop.”
  • “It’s a great workshop to learn about yourself, to meet interesting women and to connect.”
Winter Quarterly Program
Active Aging: Discover What’s Next for You 
with Keynote Speaker, Joy Loverde
Rescheduled to Winter 2021

Due to the uncertainty of the Covid19 pandemic and since Joy must travel from Chicago, we have decided to postpone this program until early 2021.  Stay tuned for new date.   

Join to hear from best-selling author and national aging advocate Joy Loverde as she shares smart strategies for living your best life now and in the future. Participants will learn about the significance of the longevity revolution and aging well, along with key issues to consider, how to plan ahead, and more! Highlights of the discussion will include:

  • Obstacles to Aging in Place
  • Preparing for Solo Aging 
  • Essential Questions to Ask
  • Power of Self-Talk

Joy will reveal clear, practical, and relevant suggestions for you to build your own unique life plan for aging well.

If you have questions, please email Jill at:   j ill.goski@gmail.com

Register now to save your seat!  

Even without margaritas or salsa dancing, 12 women had fun celebrating Cinco de Mayo at our Virtual Get Connected on May 5, the actual date of that holiday! Of course, it was very different than meeting at a restaurant, but we were still able to feel connected as we shared information about our lives during Covid19. Lots of varied experiences were told as we identified things we have done during this stay at home quarantine that otherwise we wouldn’t have done. The experiences ranged from cleaning every nook and cranny to taking care of a loved one that temporarily moved to a sibling’s house, to buying new bedclothes to putting together a challenging (and not very satisfying) jigsaw puzzle. Some of us enjoy hunkering down and others are thinking about vacuuming their roofs! (just kidding)

Submitted by Jill Goski

Our MSP TTN Chapter continues to provide opportunities to connect until we are out and about more and can meet in person. Most of our Transition Peer Groups (TPGs), Special Interest Groups (SIGs) and our Caring Collaborative (CC) Committee are meeting via Zoom. As the summer and fall progress, members of each TPG, SIG and the CC will determine their group’s method of meeting based on the community health at the time and the preferences of members. A couple SIGs that are outdoor activity based are beginning to plan outdoor meetings with social distancing. For larger chapter-wide events, we are planning in-person programs and gatherings for late summer and fall so we are poised to resume our more traditional methods of connecting when health conditions permit and our members are comfortable doing so.  We will keep you advised as the local health conditions evolve and further impact our planning.  

Please note:
  • The Women Weaving Words Garden Party originally scheduled for June 27 has been rescheduled for Saturday, August 29, at 11:00 AM.  

  • Our Spring Quarterly Program, Active Aging with Joy Loverde, originally scheduled for April 30 and rescheduled to October 29 has been postponed again to early 2021. Joy is not local and there is some uncertainty about the pandemic and air travel in the Fall. 

  • Current registrations for both the Women Weaving Words and the Active Aging programs will be transferred to the new dates unless a registrant requests a refund.   

Remember, to check out the Virtual Programs and Events sponsored by National TTN and 13 other TTN Chapters that are open to all TTN members. Recent program topics include: Friendship, Finding Purpose, Mindfulness, Resilience, Reframing Aging, Science of Well-Being, How Seniors are Saving the World, How to Create Meaningful Connections and more. You can see these opportunities on our event page.

In May, we began additional forums for sharing and laughing together and connecting in new ways through our virtual Get Connected events and the Caring Collaborative Discussion Groups. Please know that we are here for you and there are still ways we can keep ourselves from feeling alone and confined. Look at our calendar and join us.  

Do you have something you want to share with TTN MSP members? If so, please forward to Jill and Cyndy for inclusion in future newsletter at  jill.goski@gmail.com  and  clnelson03@gmail.com .

Terri Evans recommends the following article:

See the article at the link below in the MAY 2020 AARP Bulletin. There is a side-bar that gives suggestions for how to video-conference well. SEE: “Be a Star On-screen: Tips for Your Video Chat.

Transition Peer Groups
Submitted by Barbara O’Sullivan
Currently the daytime peer groups in the east and west metro area and an evening east metro group continue to meet monthly using Zoom. We all seem to be improving our technology skills so we can focus more on our connections with each other and less on the technology. All three groups welcome new members.

If you are not a member of a peer group now may be a good time to join. Even though we are physically distancing, we can still be connected and not in social isolation. Peer groups offer an opportunity to share ideas and information. Peer groups focus on mutual support and encouragement in an environment of confidentiality, compassion and respect. Peer groups offer a fresh diversity of perspectives and discussions and conversations that can challenge us mentally. And we all have a chance to foster new relationships.

We continue to explore opportunities to add new peer groups either geographically or by topic. Examples of topics can range from work/life balance, accountability groups to get meaningful things done, health and well-being or any idea you may have.

If you are interested in joining an existing peer group or starting a new one, please contact me and I will get you connected. I can be reached via email and am happy to set up a time to talk. I look forward to hearing from you. Wishing you and your loved ones to be safe, healthy, and happy.

If you have questions, please contact Barbara O’Sullivan at  Barbara.osullivan@hotmail.com .
Submitted by Sylvia Mohn

The Life Animated TPG met on May 14 via Zoom to discuss the topic of coping. Discussion was led by Julie. This meeting was a check-in on how we're doing. Members of the group are doing a variety of things from cutting our own hair, cleaning, learning about new media options and podcasts, considering or making housing changes, walking, and taking online classes and webinars. We discussed how differently people and family members are coping with the virus changes and shutdown. Some are in funks and others are trying to establish new routines as we adjust to slow living. Some members are finding it difficult to focus with our “COVID brains”, but some are finding that is improving. One member is looking at the topic of fear and meditation; she recommended the book  A Year to Live  by Stephen Levine.

Our next meeting is  Thursday, June 11 , at 10:00 AM via Zoom. Pam will lead a discussion where we can share our feelings.

Please contact Eleni Skevas at   eskevs@yahoo.com  if you are interested in joining this group. 

Submitted by Barbara O’Sullivan

Our Living with Purpose Transition Peer Group met May 28 using Zoom. Technology is now added towards the top of our gratitude list keeping us connected and not completely socially isolated. We continue to have great participation as we are in the comfort of our homes. Although truthfully, we are all ready to break out, missing in-person contact. We support each other in this challenging time. The opportunity to be out in our gardens and taking walks where we connect with nature are a calming influence. The blooming flowers and trees and the song birds are amazing this time of year.

We plan to use Zoom meetings until we can gather in-person again. We realize the support, information and knowledge as well as some humor we share with each other is vital at times like this. Our lives are disrupted, but we are strong together to get through this crisis and use this time to see what we learn about ourselves and others.

Our June meeting is scheduled for  Thursday, June 25,  from 6:30-8:00 PM. Upcoming topics to focus our discussion include outer order and inner calm; wellness and well-being; "Awe" and where we find it. New members are always welcome. Stay well in all aspects of body, mind and spirit.

For more information or questions, contact Barbara at  Barbara.osullivan@hotmail.com .

Submitted by Ginny Jacobson

Seven of us met via Zoom on Monday, May 4 to discuss resilience and hope. Jean Forrey facilitated our meeting. Among the pieces that we shared were poems by Maya Angelou, Wendell Berry, and Stanley Kunitz; a video with birds and joyful birdsong; a YouTube reading of gratitude and blessing; a Ted Talk about three skills that resilient people have; and a newsletter with a perspective on the daily news. We talked about the various ways we are coping and agreed that getting out in nature is very life affirming. 

On  Monday, June 1 , at 1:00 PM, we will meet via Zoom to share something positive that we are learning, individually and/or globally, during this time of uncertainty and disruption. 

We are open to new members! 

For more information or questions, contact Barbara at  Barbara.osullivan@hotmail.com .

Special Interest Groups (SIGs)
New SIG looking for
interested participants
Submitted by Jean Forrey

Wednesday, May 13, found 5 ladies still hopeful about playing mini golf together. We shared some feelings about the just announced governor’s decision to end the stay at home order and I think the consensus was we will probably still be staying at home!  At the present time, mini golf centers are still closed. 
Since we are a creative and innovative bunch (and a little bit stir crazy) we decided to design our own mini golf holes at home! We might venture out to a member’s home who has a perfect set-up spot, or we might just share our creations via zoom or video. If we need inspiration there are lots of ideas online.
It was unanimous to name our group Par-Tee On! thanks to Pat Burgraff’s clever suggestion.
Our next meeting which we hope will be in person with social distancing and masks- but more probable another Zoom session- will be  Monday, June 22,   at 6:30 PM.

If you are interested in joining us, please contact Jan Weller at  janisweller@gmail.com  or Jean Forrey at  jean.4e@gmail.com
Submitted by Tracey Baker

B.C. (before Covid-19) the Art Appreciation interest group met to explore a variety of art shows and venues. In May, we were pleased to have our largest group of thirteen women gather on Zoom to discuss what we are creating at home, art we are discovering online, and other ways we can nurture our creativity and appreciation of art in our area. We had a lively discussion of what we’re doing at home (puzzles, various crafts, fused glass, painting, sewing, etc.). Terri Evans suggested taking selfies while visiting street art/murals around the Twin Cities. We also discussed sending photographs of our creations to create a virtual art exhibit or slide show. We will send out an email to the Art Appreciation contact list inviting submissions in early June. We'd love to show the variety of creative endeavors of our members. Let us know if you want to be on our contact list.

Our June meeting will again be on Zoom. We will meet on  Wednesday, June 10 , at 1:00 PM. You are welcome to join us! After you RSVP to Tracey, you will receive a Zoom invitation and instructions.

If you are interested in participating or want to be on our contact list, contact Tracey Baker at   tracey.baker@gmail.com  or JeNell Jacobson at   jenell@jacobson.org .
Submitted by Robin Getman
The CCCC ( Cards, Coins, Conversation, and Canapes)  SIG events are suspended until further notice. If you have proven experience with a safe, fun, user-friendly, online resource for playing cards with other people while sheltering-in-place, please contact Robin.

For more information, contact Robin at  RGetman220@aol.com
Submitted by Terri Evans

Members of the TTN Daytime Book Club met on Thursday, May 7, to discuss our May selection,  Washington Black  by Esi Edguyan.

We began by discussing the reading we have been doing during the Coronavirus19 quarantine. The following books, among others, were mentioned (in case you’re looking for a good book to read!):

  •  How Democracies Die by Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt - 2018
  • Ride of a Lifetime: Lessons Learned from 15 Years as CEO of the Walt Disney by Robert Iger - 2019
  • Blue Nights by Joan Didion - 2011
  • A Year to Live by Stephen Levine - 1997
  • Hitler’s Children: Sons and Daughters of Third Reich Leaders by Gerald Posner - 1993
  • American Dirt by Jeanine Cummins - 2020
  • The Splendid and the Vile by Erik Larson - 2020
  • The Great Believers by Rebecca Makkai - 2018
  • The Marriage of Opposites by Alice Hoffman - 2015
  • Stay Woke by Justin Michael Williams - 2020
  • Creating on Purpose: The Spiritual Technology of Manifesting Through the Chakras by Anodea Judith and Lion Goodman - 2012
  • The Dutch House by Ann Patchett - 2019
  • The Alice Network by Kate Quinn - 2017
  • The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank - 1947
  • Mrs. Kennedy and Me by Clint Hill - 2012
  • Rays of Hope in Times of Loss: Courage and Comfort for Grieving Hearts by Susan Zimmerman
  • Hidden Valley Road: Inside the Mind of an American Family by Robert Kolker
  • The Blue Zones Kitchen: 100 Recipes to Live to 100 by Dan Buettner
  • Magnolia Table: A Collection of Recipes for Gathering, Volumes ! and II by Joana Gaines - 2018 and 2020

In regards to  Washington Black , members had a great discussion of the magical realism aspects of the book, the relationship between the central characters of Wash and Titch, the concepts of motherhood and fatherhood, the disfigurement of the main character, the plot/character/setting/and language doors found in the novel, themes of race and injustice, elements of science versus faith, the book’s ending and more. Members rated the book an average of 3.5 of 5 stars.

Book Club members had originally chosen  Washington Black  as their May selection because it was to be the featured book for the Minneapolis Institute of Art’s May “Inspired by Books” program. Since this event had been cancelled, members discussed artwork related to the book that they felt might have been included. Their suggestions included  Santos Dumont - The Father of Aviation II  by Kehinde Wiley and  Temporary Storage: The Belongings of Juan Manuel Montes  by Camilo Ontiveros (see below).

Our June meeting will be on  Thursday, June 4 , 10:00 AM-12:00 PM via Zoom. We will be discussing the book  The Dutch House  by Ann Patchett.

On July 2, we will be discussing  American Dirt  by Jeanine Cummins.

We meet on the first Thursday of the month from 10:00 AM–Noon.

Question?  Contact Eleni Skevas at eskevs@yahoo.com
Submitted by Beth Stockinger

We had a great turn out on Tuesday, May 12, on Zoom. We enjoyed talking about and reading poetry from our May book choice,  The Sage’s Tao Te Ching: Ancient Advice for the Second Half of Life   by William Martin. This book was filled with meaningful and touching poetry.

The group members generated book suggestions for the upcoming months. We have so many wonderful titles to pick from! We did choose books for the next 3 months.

Our next meeting will be on  Tuesday, June 9,  at 6:30 PM via Zoom. We will be reading  Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead   by Brene Brown.

July 14  -  How Democracies Die  by Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt
August 11  -  Dutch House   by Ann Patchett

We are interested in having additional TTN members join our group. We meet the second Tuesday of the month from 6:30-8:30 PM.

To learn more about the group contact Beth Stockinger at  alberstock@aol.com  or Grace Bartholet at  gbartholet@gmail.com .
Submitted by Kathleen Peterson

On May 8, nine members of the Exploring Food SIG "Zoomed" in together to discuss all things food, pandemic, and 'Staying at Home'. We began by reviewing basic food safety and handling strategies, then moved on to our various shopping methods, how to enhance our diets with healthy snacks, more vegetable dishes, comfort foods, and easy meals that are 'assembly only'. There were some great ideas involving the versatility of corn tortillas, adding vegetables to Marinara sauce, how to bake no knead crusty white bread in a dutch oven, the delights of mango salsa on fish among others. 

Our June meeting will be held on  Friday, June 12,  from 1:00-2:30 PM via Zoom. We will continue with our connecting, our favorite summer and grilling recipes, more vegetarian eating strategies, and how Farmer's Markets may fit into our summer situations.

Please join us if you are available and interested in these topics, even if you don't normally attend this SIG. RSVP to Chris DiPietro at  cmdjp2@gmail.com . You will receive a Zoom meeting invitation from her via email about a week before the meeting date.

If you have any questions about this SIG, please contact Kathleen Peterson at  kathleenpeterson614@gmail.com
Submitted by Cyndy Nelson

Ten of us participated in a Zoom meeting on May 19. We did a touch base which focused on something financial you have done or are concerned about since the pandemic started. Actions included paying off mortgages, refinancing, worst case financial modeling, remodeling, studying finances/spending, adopting more aggressive approach in long term investments, support causes/organizations important to you, and double kids’ savings.

Our topic was Annuities led by Jan Weller. Jan shared that annuities have a bad reputation, have been around a long time, and can be a useful component in one's portfolio to provide a guaranteed income stream for life. Make sure you are working with somebody that is knowledgeable and trustworthy as annuities can be very complicated. Thanks to Jan for sharing her knowledge and providing resources so we could do a deeper dive on our own to understand the product.
Our June meeting is  Tuesday, June 16 , 6:30-8:00 PM via Zoom. Topic is Security Blankets/how to feel safer during these times/re-evaluating priorities for money.

Our July meeting is  Tuesday, July 19 , 6:30-8:00 PM via Zoom. Topic is maintaining a lifestyle.

The purpose of this group is to increase our personal financial literacy. The knowledge of members about financial topics varies from beginner to more experienced. Our topics will be selected based on what individual members are interested in. We meet on the third Tuesday of the month at 6:30 PM. New members are welcome. Come and give it a try.

Please email Cyndy at  clnelson03@gmail.com if you are interested in joining us, have ideas for topics, or have questions.
Submitted by Robin Getman

Theater SIG events are suspended until local theaters begin to re-open. Most theaters have cancelled the remainder of the 2020 season and are waiting to determine whether they will plan and announce a 2021 season.
In the meantime, please join our private TTN Theater SIG Facebook group: 

  1. Search “TTN Theater MSP” on Facebook, or insert this link to access the private group page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/ttntheatermsp/
  2. Not a member of the private FB group yet? Simply request to join the group. The group administrator will receive notification of your request, accept your request, and, you’re in!

Got questions? Need help? Contact Robin Getman at  RGetman220@aol.com

Submitted by Marilynne Roberts
Road Scholar Ambassador Marilyn Doyle inspired Travel SIG members with her presentation about why travel is still important, methods to prepare for adventures, trip planning, traveling as a single woman, and the details of taking learning adventures with Road Scholar at our virtual meeting May 27. Her lively discussion and pictures from her many travels energized us to keep dreaming about travel in our futures, and motivated us to commit to continue to prepare thoughtfully, even in light of current uncertainties. Learn more at   https://www.roadscholar.org    

Please email Marilynne at  mkrobertsmn@gmail.com , Debra Dorgan at  debra.dorgan@gmail.com  or Julie Efta at  teacherjulie.efta@gmail.com  if you are interested in joining us, have ideas for events, or have questions.
Submitted by Chris DiPietro

This SIG gives us the opportunity to explore and/or introduce others to new locations in the metro area. Our hikes last about 60-90 minutes and we walk at a moderately brisk and steady pace. All are welcome to join us as we walk and talk. We sometimes end our hikes with a stop at a local establishment for a coffee/drink/ice cream.

First, please make note of a change in leadership for the group. Chris DiPietro is taking over coordination duties for the Urban Hiking SIG. This will allow Cyndy Nelson to focus on her family and TTN chapter duties. Thanks to Cyndy for coordinating the group for the past several years. You can contact Chris with any questions about the Urban Hiking SIG or its events at  cmdjp2@gmail.com .

Our last hike was at the Mall of America in February and due to COVID-19 we have had a bit of a break. We plan to get together in June for a hike while observing the guidelines for Stay Safe MN. The June hike is scheduled for  Thursday, June 18,  at 10:00-11:00 AM at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds. (Rain date is Tuesday, June 23, same time.) There’s a lot of room for social distancing at the fairgrounds, and it’s fun to see the sites you might miss when you are in the midst of the crowd at the fair. We’ll meet in front of the Hamline Church Dining Hall at 1667 Dan Patch Avenue. Free on street parking is available right in front of the dining hall. If needed, we’ll break up in groups of 2 or 3 to make it easier to social distance. If you are interested in attending, please let Chris know.

In the meantime, to aid in planning future events for the SIG, if you have discovered great locations in the metro area to hike and maintain social distance, please let Chris know.

Questions? Please contact Chris at  cmdjp2@gmail.com .
Submitted by Julie Efta

We are a small group that continues to meet Fridays at 10:00 AM via Zoom. If you are interested in joining us during our Zoom phase, please contact Julie.

We will plan a special Zoom meeting inviting new interested writers with introductions, interests, and a writing exercise. A desire to write is required. No experience needed!!

Questions? Please contact Julie Efta at teacherjulie.efta@gmail.com .