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Summit Resilience Training

DRwJL – Memories in the Making- Art Through the Eyes of a Person with Alzheimer’s

May 20, 2019 My guests were Nancy Thompson and Lisa Steffen of the Colorado Alzheimer’s Association as we talked about the Memories in the Making Art Auction. We spoke about the benefits of the program and how it enhances the lives of those with memory impairment. The MIM Art Auction is held at the Denver Broncos Training Field House and the date of the auction is June 9th, 2018. Call the Alzheimer’s Association at 303-813-1669 or go to their website www.alz.org/co to learn more and purchase tickets.

DRwJL Strategy Show – Answering Listeners Questions

This week, May 6, is a strategy show about how to talk with a care community about issues regarding a resident. Also answering listeners questions! Letting someone else take over the care of your loved one when the scope of care has become too much is trying and difficult for many. I have some advice for you and I have a great show for all, about listeners pressing questions!

DRwJL – Suicide. Choice or Tragedy… A Truly Candid Conversation

This show today is an important one and personal to me. I am discussing suicide, prevention, awareness and all the facets that encompass this tragedy, and sometimes a choice thought of as death with dignity in chronic illness cases. I am not judge or jury. Recently I lost a friend to death by suicide and I am still rocked by it. I invited Dr. Stacey Freedenthal, Associate Professor, University of Denver Graduate School of Social Work, to guide us through this discussion. It is open, honest, emotional, and a show I am proud to produce.

DRwJL Normal Aging & Cognitive Loss & New Research P2

This week, I interviewed Dr. Brianne Bettcher, Assistant Professor of Neuropsychology at the University of Colorado Rocky Mountain Alzheimer’s Disease Center in Denver. In Part 2 Bri talked with me about the difference between normal aging and cognitive impairment. We talked about new advances in research and how she is working on determining when a person will get Alzheimer’s and when you will be at certain stages and at what age if you get AD.

DRwJL Normal Aging & Cognitive Impairment & New Advances in Research P1

This week, I interviewed Dr. Brianne Bettcher, Assistant Professor of Neuropsychology at the University of Colorado Rocky Mountain Alzheimer’s Disease Center in Denver. In Part 1 Bri talked with me about the difference between normal aging and cognitive impairment. We talked about new advances in research and how she is working on determining when a person will get Alzheimer’s and when you will be at certain stages and at what age if you get AD.

DRwJL Actor Charles “VAL” Valentino Chats about his Mom’s Memory Loss

I am so happy to welcome my friend Val, Charles Valentine to the show this week. We have been friends for many years after my cousin, Johnny Kris Johnson introduced us in LA. After knowing Val for about 5 years I received a call from him, requesting help when he learned his beloved Mom Margarita Promponas, was having memory issues and cognitive loss. Val returned to his native New York City to care for her, and has remained by her side for years. Today we had a lovely chat about Val’s childhood, Margarita’s career, and Val’s career and how it changed when he decided to put his work on hold and return to Manhattan. Val speaks with so much love about his mom and her Alzheimer’s. He has used many techniques to learn her new style of communication. He has figured out her many nuances of smiles, the look in her eyes , and things she says to help him understand her needs. Even as her Alzheimer’s has progressed, she still loves to sing and dance.

Margarita Promponas

Throughout her life, Margarita was a singer and dancer who toured the country in her younger years. She was also extremely proud of her Native American heritage. Her son soon followed in her footsteps. Charles Valentino attended classes at the New York School of Ballet and the American Ballet Theater while a student at the High School of Performing Arts and he danced with the Harkness Ballet, the work was choreographed by Geoffrey Holder. He made his acting debut in The Me Nobody Knows, – played HUD in the Australian production of HAIR, and returned to the states for the national tour of the show. He had a hit single “I was born this way,” on Gaiee Records, released by Motown. In Bill Turner’s version of the Ziegfeld Follies Valentino portrayed the legendary Bert Williams. He also appeared on Komedy Tonight, an NBC-TV special. He was the scarecrow in the national touring company of the WIZ as well as the 84 revival on Broadway with Stephanie Mills. Most recently he acted on CSI Vegas.

Val in the Theater production of THE WIZ

His more recent work was with his close friend Joni Mitchell. He is featured on her special Painting with Words and Music. He was also featured in her video Come in from the cold, He sang on Ladies Man, from the album Wild Things Run Fast, and Yvette in English from the album Turbulent Indigo.

Shell Burton, Johnny Kris Johnson, Val, & Joni Mitchell

We spoke about how Val stays healthy as a caregiver and what he does for fun. His LA family is still close to his heart. He shares information about his deep love for friends Joni Mitchell and Anjelica Huston with whom he has sang and danced with so many times over the years. Angelica Huston writes in her book, Watch Me: “He twirls me around as if I were a silk scarf. I never set down unless he was dancing with his other favorite girl Joni Mitchell.”

Val & Margarita today

His LA family includes my cousin Johnny Kris, who Val calls his brother by another mother and Shell Burton. They have had a deep friendship for over 40 years. Val credits his family and friends for keeping him motivated, while caring for his mom. No matter who you are or how bright the lights shine on you, Alzheimer’s can find you anywhere. I thank my friend for being on the show and lovingly sharing their story.

DRwJL – Big & Loud – An Awesome program for People with Parkinson’s p.2

This is part 2 of Big & Loud, a program designed to help people with Parkinson’s dementia speak in a more audible voice and exercise in a way which enhances fluid movement. A fantastic conversation with Angela Halpern, Bob Brown 7 Laura Guse from LSVT Global.

DRwJL – Big & Loud An Awesome Program for People with Parkinson’s p. 1

My guests in this 2 part segment beginning the first part of April, are Angela Halpern, Laura Guse, and Bob Brown as we spoke about a program from LSVT Global called Big and Loud! A fantastic program to help people with Parkinson’s to live resiliently and improve many aspects of their life including its quality on a daily basis.

DRwJL – Strategy Show – The Early Warning Signs of Alzheimer’s

My show today is a strategy show was about the 10 warning signs of Alzheimer’s and explain what are the nitty gritty clues we see in our homes when MCI and early stage are starting to show. I hope today’s show helps enlighten #caregivernation of what their friend with diagnosis is experiencing and help them display more compassion and understanding. This is the beginning of accepting the notion that our actions toward a person who has cognitive impairment and memory loss, will create a reaction in return. There are two sides to this coin and we all play a part in the success or failure of each interaction.