Archive for the ‘Events’ Category

4 WordsworthBooks

My little mouse poet Wordsworth and I will be at Barnes & Noble at Arden Fair, Sacramento on December 9th, at 11 a.m. Come meet Wordsworth and bring  your children ages  1 to 90.

Wordsworth the Poet: Poor Wordsworth, everyone worries or makes fun of him because he is different by being a poet. One day his poetry saves his whole village.

Wordsworth Dances the Waltz: Wordsworth teaches the adults that his Grandma is still a Grandma even if she is losing her memory.

Wordsworth! Stop the Bulldozer:  The trees are being destroyed. Can Wordsworth and his friends use their poetry to save these trees? See how a group of children become empowered through writing, to make a difference.

Wordsworth, It’s in Your Pocket: Poor Wordsworth, all his friends are addicted to electronic games. Can he bring them back again to ocean waves and human conversations and true human friendship? An old mouse tells him the answer is in his pocket.



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brookdale2016_booksIt was an honor to have been invited to present two sessions at this conference attended by inspiring people from across the United States who are making a difference in our 50 states, working with caregivers and family members who are raising children without their parents.

Whenever I’m on the road, the magic word becomes “Hawai‘i.” What joy to meet three very special people with Hawai‘i connections in Denver this past weekend.

So here we are, the Hawai‘i Foursome: Dr. Matthew Kaplan of Pennsylvania State University, PA; Terri Byers, Director, and Lani Sakamoto, Supervisor, at the Executive Office of Aging, Honolulu; and me.


Dr. Kaplan spent many years at Hawaii Pacific University and now works with Space and Places to build meaningful inter-generational relationships.

Thank you, Mary Asenjo, Carmen Mendieta, and Melinda Perez-Porter of Brookdale Foundation Group for your continuous interest in my work.

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essence-of-care-flyerMark your calendars! I have been invited to present at the Del Oro Caregiver Resource Center event The Essence of Care – a retreat designed to provide family caregivers with respite, rejuvenation and renewal.

Please join us on Saturday, November 5, 2016, at Town and Country Lutheran Church, 4049 Marconi Avenue in Sacramento from 10:00am to 3:00pm.

Registration begins at 9:30am | Retreat 10am – 3pm
COST: $40 (snacks, lunch and materials included) NOTE: If cost is a concern, limited scholarships are available.
RESPITE: If you need someone to care for your loved one in order to attend this retreat, free in-home respite care is available to qualified caregivers.

REGISTER/QUESTIONS: Please contact Del Oro Caregiver Resource Center (916) 728-9333. Space is limited – Register today! Deadline to register – October 28th

More information is here: http://www.deloro.org/upcoming-events/2016/11/5/the-essence-of-care and you can also download their registration form there.

SPONSORS: Del Oro Caregiver Resource Center, Elder Care Management of Northern California, Senior Care Solutions, Triple-R Adult Day Program, Colleen Watters Attorney at Law, and LPL Financial


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A big “Thank you!” to Roberta Murray and the Hawaii Community Caregiver Network for inviting me to deliver the keynote address at their annual caregiver conference. It was a nostalgic return to Kona where my teaching career began.

Some photos for now, more stories to come.

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ErikaSandiNativeBooksIt takes Wordsworth to bring the past and present together. I had two special guests at my Wordsworth reading at Native Books this weekend. Months ago, young Erika wrote a poem for Wordsworth and sent it to Wordsworth, and they are now active pen pals. They both take karate. Sandi (far right) was a former kindergartner and first grader when I was a 24-year-old teacher. And here she is, after all these years. She showed me a class photo and I recognized each by name. My heart almost blew up.

AshleeNativeBooksAshlee Affonso and Native Books, thank you for hosting the reading/signing of Wordsworth, It’s In Your Pocket. What stories gathered around that table. I’ll see you next week for the lecture/signing of I Am Somebody:Bringing Dignity and Compassion to Alzheimer’s Caregiving. You make it possible for a visit home with my books. (The lecture will be Saturday, September 3 at 11 a.m. Native Books is at Ward Warehouse.)

After Native Books, I went to Barnes & Noble at Ala Moana. (Thank you, Ipo Roney, for your care there.) There I had a visit from Alia.

AliaWordworthAlia was 4 years old when she first met Wordsworth the Poet. A few days after hearing Wordsworth, her grandma found her in the yard in early morning. Her grandma asked her, “Why are you out in the yard?” and Alia answered, “I’m Wordsworth, I want to catch some dewdrops.”

Since then, Alia has attended each of Wordsworth’s four books signing. She was there on Saturday for the fourth book: Wordsworth, It’s in your Pocket. Alia is now a senior in high school.

What a wonderful weekend!

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To friends on Oahu, would love to see you during my coming visit. I’ll be at Ward Warehouse:Native books on August 17 and Sept 3rd:

11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Will be reading Wordsworth, It’s in Your Pocket on Aug 17th and I Am Somebody: Bringing Dignity and Compassion to Alzheimer’s Caregiving on Sept 3rd. Will be signing books on both days.

To my Hilo friends, I’ll be reading Wordsworth, It’s in Your Pocket at Basically Books at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Sept 10th. Am looking forward to seeing some of my former students who plan to be there. Book signing, too.

Now, to my Kona friends and former students, I’ll be giving the keynote address at the Hawai’i Community Caregivers Network conference at the Sheraton Keauhou on Sept 9th.

My first teaching job was at Konawaena High and Elem School. I taught Kindergarten.

During the first week, a child brought in one of those Life Science books and knowing it was too difficult for five year olds, I showed the illustrations and ad-libbed the text. Arnold ( I still remember you, Arnold) turned to look at his classmates and explained why I was not reading the book,”Her young yet, she don’t know how to read.” Being young, I had to prove I could read so I began to read the text and soon lost all their attention. Having proven my reading abilities, I went on and had a wonderful time. I still remember their names, as I do all the students I’ve taught. Hope some of my students still live in Kona, would love to see them.


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Hawaii Fall 2016 Schedule

Wordsworth_Native Books posterI will be appearing at the following events on Oahu and the Big Island in August and September. (My events schedule is also posted here, but the times all show up in California time, so this is more friendly for Hawaii folks to look at.) I hope to see some of you at one of these events.

Saturday, August 27
11:00am – 12:30pm | Native Books / Na Mea Hawaii
Ward Warehouse
reading from Wordsworth, It’s in Your Pocket!, which addresses the topic of too much screen time for children, followed by book signing
2:30pm – 3:30pm | Barnes & Noble Ala Moana
book signing
sales at this event help benefit Read to Me International

IAS_Native Books posterSaturday, September 3
11:00am – 12:30pm | Native Books / Na Mea Hawaii
Ward Warehouse
presentation on how to bring dignity to the caregiving experience and use writing as a tool to manage the complex emotions and stress that come with the role of caregiver, followed by book signing

Friday, September 9 | 7:30am – 3pm
Hawaii Community Caregiver Network
“Carousel of Care” Caregiver’s Conference
Sheraton Kona Resort and Spa at Keauhou Bay
keynote speaker and workshop session
Cost to attend is $25. Visit www.hawaiicaregivers.org or call 808-322-5157 for more details and registration.

Saturday, September 10
1pm – 2pm | Basically Books | 160 Kamehameha Ave, Hilo
reading from Wordsworth, It’s in Your Pocket!, which addresses the topic of too much screen time for children, followed by book signing

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I spoke at Isabella Geriatric Center in New York City this weekend. I called the presentation “Gratitude. Trust. Dignity.” After my session, the residents surrounded me, asking me to return so every staff member, social workers and families could hear me. They asked, “Can you help us start book clubs and writing groups?”


They welcomed the homework I gave—to begin a daily Journal of Joy.

Coming next: a heart-warming observation in the elevator and more valuable lessons learned from the elders and the young.

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IMG_3428This past weekend, I spoke at the Honpa Hongwanji Betsuin, Honolulu.

Bishop Eric Matsumoto and Alan Goto of Honpa Hongwanji, thank you for welcoming me home once again with orchid and white ginger flower leis. Rose Nakamura of the Dana program, thank you for your continued support of my work.

It was another homecoming seeing a former first grader and her family. I had taught Renee Tanaka when I was 24 years old, 51 years ago. To former colleagues from my teaching years, to former Kapoho and Pahoa residents, to those who came to hear me for the second time in two weeks, and to all who filled the temple, my gratitude.

I hope my presentation, “The Gift, Joy, and Legacy of Caregiving” and the many copies of I Am Somebody you purchased will be of help.

Rose, I’m so pleased the support group I had suggested almost 15 years ago is still going strong.


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In addition to the Sunrise Ministry Foundation Wellness Conference in October, I will be at two other Hawaii events in November:

November 8 at the Honpa Hongwanji Hawaii Betsuin, Temple Annex
11:30am – 1pm
“Dignity, Joy and Compassion in Giving Care” presentation

November 20 at Mākena Beach & Golf Resort
8:30am – 3:30pm
Maui County’s 14th Annual Family Caregivers Conference
The conference is $15 for seniors, caregivers and students and $25 for professionals; registration includes continental breakfast and a buffet lunch.
To register see this article for details.

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