Inhale … exhale at the Senior Citizens Center

By Staff
July 11, 2004
Breathing. Something we all do. Birds do it, bees do it, even pesky fleas do it! Plants breathe. It's the one thing all people have in common (if you ever
wondered).
Breath is life. Meditation is centered on breath. By watching yourself inhale (hold), exhale (hold), you can bring your entire focus to that one act. Naturally, your mind will try to wander to all the things you need to do that morning shopping, dental appointment, what to plan for supper. Any time you can focus your mind on one thing for a given length of time, you begin to relax.
People attend our yoga class at the Senior Citizen Center for many reasons. It is an excellent stretching program; good for strengthening joints, as well as bones. It is possible to take the class a step further. Sybil Belcher, instructor, tells the class between sets, "Inhale, exhale! Inhale, exhale." If when settling into a posture such as "The Warrior" you can inhale, hold and mentally check your body for any tension; and exhale, relieving tension in that place. It becomes a kind of meditation mind focused on one thing.
A lot of people tell me that gardening is a kind of therapy for them. I understand completely. Just the act of deadheading a bed of flowers can be relaxing. When you are relaxed, it is easier to put things into perspective.
What is really important in life to you? How can you make that happen? With cell phones, computers, fax machines, the constant following up on things happening in our world these days, it's great to have a community center to go to and get away for a few hours. Come find a class you can breathe easy in.
We are in the middle of our summer classes. It is a good time to come visit the center and see what people are doing. You might find a class you'd like to try. We are offering bingo once every week during the summer first and third Mondays and Thursdays between weeks at 2 p.m.
The July 15 bingo game will be hosted by Home Health and Hospice, which will offer a brief presentation about hospice care and bingo with prizes and snacks. Come join us.
Fall classes
Rather than take a long break between classes this summer, we will begin fall classes on Aug. 16. Registration is scheduled the first two weeks in August. Our quilting instructors will be taking a break at this time, but the decorative painting, one-stroke, gourd design and basket weaving classes will be offered.
Computer classes online
Our beginning classes will continue to be offered on a four-week, monthly basis. So many people are repeating the courses we are calling some of them "Part Deux" classes.
Our two newest instructors come to us from the Meridian Community College computer program; they seem to know what they are talking about. Granted a few of us were lost when Chris started talking about burning CDs. (Why would anyone want to burn a CD?)
Come by to sign up now for August classes taught on Monday night, and three classes each day on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. You'll learn some of the lingo at least!
Anyone who wants to donate a Mavis Beacon Typing Program to us is welcome. We have several students who need to learn to type.
The city has finally agreed to provide us Internet access via BellSouth DSL. Once all the systems are linked and ready, we will have Internet classes.
We hope to offer an "open studio" at a designated time for people needing Medicaid information online.
Upcoming workshops
July 20, 1 p.m.: The Alzheimer's Association will conduct an educational workshop for social workers, family members, day care staff anyone interested in learning more about this brain disorder. Contact Barbara Dobrowsky.
July 23, from 1 p.m.-4 p.m.: "Flowers Up Close," the first of two watercolor workshops taught by Pat Kent. "Flowers in Bunches" will be offered Aug. 11, from 1 p.m.-4 p.m. These classes will cost $20; the class is limited in size, so please send in your checks made payable to Pat Kent as soon as possible. Call 485-1812 for more information.
Aug. 3-4, from 5:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m.: For those of us who work, Carole Ewing will host another Mosaic Birdhouse Workshop. This is a two-evening event; you must plan to attend both nights. The cost is $25. You can call Carole directly in the ceramics building at 485-1810 to register.
Aug. 19 and 26, from 10:30 a.m.-1 p.m.: We are planning to offer cooking classes. The first class will be on Chinese cooking; we'll be making eggrolls and an entree. The Aug. 26 class will be Mexican. The cost for each class will be $25 to cover materials for the meal. We will all make the dishes together and then sit down to eat. It's a good chance to experiment with something new for your next dinner party.
The Senior Citizen Center is located on 29th Avenue and 36th Street. A sign is posted at the four-way stop. Head west two blocks, and turn left on 32nd Avenue. The center is at the end of the street.
Barbara Wells is director of Meridian's Senior Citizen Center.

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