Monday, September 15, 2014

Get All Bent Into Shape! Don't Miss the Monthly Meeting Sept. 20th

​ Hello friends, I'm sure you woke this morning with a nagging curiosity about just what in the heck the Saturday meeting of the Grand High August and Exalted Anchorage Parkinson's Disease Support Group will be ​
​ about. Well, wait no longer! Let the clarions sound! Bring on the ruffles and flourishes! ​(Note to self: "Ruffles and Flourishes" is a terrific potential name for a high-calorie, low-nutrition breakfast cereal. Get on this quickly before some other sharp young thing beats you to the punch!) Now where was I? Where... Oh, of course... I'm happy to announce that this month's feature presentation will be from local yoga instructor Rocky Plotnick. Rocky has taken it upon herself to get trained in Yoga for people with PD. She couldn't have picked a better time as recent studies have found Yoga helpful for those of us who must cope with this affliction, especially in the troublesome and important area of maintaining balance. But what am I nattering on for? Get the straight scoop from Rocky herself this Saturday at the gracious Pioneer Home in bustling downtown Anchorage! Extra points if you show up in Yoga pants, and do be prepared to try a little gentle Yoga.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Please Call Stella, If She can't Understand You, Maybe This Will Help

I recently stumbled over the following paragraph:
Please call Stella. Ask her to bring these things with her from the store: Six spoons of fresh snow peas, five thick slabs of blue cheese, and maybe a snack for her brother Bob. We also need a small plastic snake and a big toy frog for the kids. She can scoop these things into three red bags, and we will go meet her Wednesday at the train station.
What is the point of this strange shopping list? According to Steven Weinberg of George Mason University's Speech accent archive, "The paragraph is written in English, and uses common English words, but contains a variety of difficult English sounds and sound sequences. The paragraph contains practically all of the sounds of English." It was composed to study people's accents (fun game based on this here). But it occurred to me that it might be useful to those of us with PD who have trouble enunciating.

If you are like me and have trouble in making any kind of speech clear, this could be the most efficient string of practice phrases ever devised. If you use it in combination with "Speak up for Parkinson's" a  free app from the Northwest Parkinson's Foundation, or as part of your LSVT drill, you should have the most difficult sounds covered, no matter what your accent.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

September Parkinson's Events in the Anchorage Area

Hello Friends, If anyone knows where August went, could you please notify me? And now, on to September before it gets away! This month's teleconference will be next Monday, September 8. Here is the lowdown, courtesy of the Spokane Parkinson's Resource Center: You are invited to attend the Parkinson’s Education TeleHealth Presentation Monday, September 8, 2014 at 1:00PM. To find the Alaska meeting, proceed with all deliberate speed to  Providence Hospital oncology wing on Piper St. Go to the second floor, walk down the lonnnnnnnng hall that stretches South from the cafe and look for room 2401 pretty much at the end of the hall on your right. Presentation Titled: It’s time to move. What do I do next? Speaker: Holli Korb, General manager Fairwinds Retirement Community Topic: Downsizing, steps and techniques to help reduce the stress of navigating those decisions and finding your new home. Speaker and panel. For more information contact : Parkinson’s Resource Center of Spokane at 509-473-2490 or by email at  Meetings are free of cost and are also received in several communities over TeleHealth. The Parkinson's TeleHealth Program broadcasts live, interactive educational talks to a network of rural communities in the Northwest. On the SECOND Monday of each month, a guest speaker presents a topic geared toward the interests of Parkinson's families. The information is designed to help participants to improve their knowledge of Parkinson's disease and in turn their quality of life.

​Our regular support group meeting will be on the 20th of September​
​ . Time is 3:30, Subject TBA. Looking down the road to October, remember we will have a speaker about Deep Brain Stimulation from Swedish Hospital in Seattle. That's all that I know about September Parkinson's news. If you know more, please drop me a line.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Please Pass the Placebo, A link to a new blog entry for the NWPF

Here is the latest entry in the blog posts that I am doing for the Northwest Parkinson's Disease Foundation. Sorry I can't print the entire entry here, but all you need to do is click the link above. Hope you enjoy it!