Hi, my friends. I’m guessing that we have a nice range of ages gathering here today.

I’m, definitely, on the high end of our age range, but I’m very competitive, and chose to do whatever it takes to” keep on keeping on” as my friend Don Frazer says.

My plan, and I’ll bet it’s yours too, I hope to remain in my home for as long as I’m able, and, being the stubborn person that I can be, I’m expecting to enjoy my own home for many years to come.

In order to do that, to remain independent and not call for help in being able to stay in my home, I know that I’ve got to exercise, and exercise hard, and to be consistent. Maybe you will remember that early this year, I had surgery that would allow me to continue exercising, because I know how very important that is — the more we move, the better our life gets.

I was reading something recently that stated that our bodies are designed to move and that as we get older, making regular exercise a habit helps us maintain our balance and our independence. It not only helps us stay healthy and reduces our risk of falls, exercise can also:

— increase our energy level

— help with sleeping problems

— improve muscle strength and flexibility

— keep bones strong

— help normalize blood pressure, blood sugar levels and weight and helps us feel good about life.

I’m sure that you are as eager as I am to lead a full, happy life. But, if you don’t use it, you lose it, is a true saying. You know how up-beat you feel when you’re doing something that you love doing, and most everything that we love doing entails being able to move well. So, walk out that front door, take some of your favorite tunes to listen to with you, walk a comfortable distance first day, a little longer the following day, and continue until you are very comfortable with longer walks, always push yourselves a little. Make if fun, enjoy the view.

Or join a gym or an exercise class, like I have. It keeps me on my toes. I don’t want to be a no-show. I want to do my hour on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

Set goals for yourselves. If you can put in six months of good exercise, you are probably on your way. You’re developing a habit, a very good habit.

The instructor who made a believer out of me is Julie Webster, CMT, CHC and Level 4 Essentrics instructor, phone 303-786-8715. Email: Julie@julie-webster.com For more information: www.julie-webster.com

One of my classmates loved and believed in Essentrics so much that she has taken lessons, graduated and now teaches through our Napa Senior Center from 6 – 7 p.m. Her name is Janelle Mason. Please call Senior Center at 255-1800 for further information. Speaking of the Napa Senior Center, tomorrow, July 15, is the re-opening of the newly renovated Napa Senior Center. You will want to make a point of dropping by for a real treat. It is so good looking, and Linda and Kelly are looking forward to showing you all the new improvements.

Some of the fun activities coming up on the Calendar this month includes an Ice Cream Social on Friday, July 19, noon to 1 p.m. Ice cream will be served “on the staff” in the Senior Center’s Manzanita room, formerly, the Social Hall. You will need to register by noon on July 15. Code# 12992. www.cityofnapa.org/parksandrec.

Sing Along Songfest is coming up on Tuesday, July 23, 12:30 – 1:30 p.m. starting on July 23 and going through the end of August, every Tuesday they will be having a sing-along song session, featuring a local musical trio leading with vocals, guitar, and upright bass. Their songs are from an extensive collection of old time favorites.

What fun — a sing along. No stress, no fee, just a joy of singing and sharing music together. Code 13537.

Napa Senior Center’s ‘Trips and Tours’ for July 25 sounds like great fun Destination is the Broadway Theater in Sacramento for the musical comedy classic, “Guys & Dolls.” The cost is $120, time: 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Code# 13065

The Senior Center presents Great programs and trips presented. Be sure to drop by for a tour of the beautiful improvements that have been made.

Before we say goodbye, please do me a favor and think about the following questions: “Are you happy with your life? Do you wish that you felt better about yourself? Do you wish you had more energy, more fun in your life?”

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, please re-read my suggestions. These ideas work for me, and I believe they will work for you, as well. Life is too short to waste any part of it. I’d love to hear from you, and the steps that you are taking to lead a healthier, happier life.

In closing, I would like to echo the ‘Be Kind’ pin that Supervisor Wagenknecht wears.

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Love hearing from you at bettyrrhodes@sbcglobal.net