Adults Returning to School

zrylw It’s never too late to start a new career, earn a degree, or simply gain more knowledge about a particular subject. The still struggling economy and poor job market have been enticing more adults than ever back into the classroom.

Returning to school isn’t easy, but neither is it impossible. Numerous systems are in place to assist adults who wish to further their education. A college degree may not be the ultimate goal for everyone, and sometimes just a few classes can help secure a new job or gain a promotion at work.

Not everyone can find the time or the money to return to college on a full-time basis, but other opportunities are available for adults who wish to further their education. Online study has become a very popular method. An online college class is flexible and convenient and can be taken from anywhere in the world with Internet access. However, it is imperative to research prospective schools to confirm they are accredited so that credits earned are recognized worldwide.

Community colleges are also a smart choice. They have much lower tuition fees than a four-year university. The first two years of college are dedicated to general education classes, so even if a four-year bachelor’s degree is the ultimate goal, completing the first two years at a community college makes good financial sense.

Colleges and the government offer loans, scholarships and grants to help students pay for higher education. A federal Pell Grant is based on income and is free money for qualifying students. Low-interest student loans are another option. Several private and state universities either waive or reduce tuition for senior citizens.

If learning is the primary objective instead of earning a degree, it’s possible to complete college classes online at no cost. Stanford, Harvard, MIT and other institutions offer free online classes to students around the world. These classes provide students with basic knowledge to form a foundation for learning. There is no admissions process, and certificates are available for a small fee to students who master the material. The classes are free but the courses don’t count toward a college degree.

Many people who would like to return to college but are concerned they will feel out of place among younger students should know that 37 percent of all college students are adults over the age of 25.

Adults going back to school should craft a realistic plan that balances work, family and class time. Juggling multiple responsibilities is a challenge, but with the right strategy and determination, all that’s left is honoring a commitment to achieving the objective: an education.

Rick Dover of Knoxville on How Building Rehabilitation Creates Jobs


Rick Dover of Knoxville has served as general manager of Family Pride Corporation since 1993. The company’s emphasis on rehabilitating historic properties has brought great benefits to each community, according to Rick Dover. Knoxville residents know that each project Family Pride Corporation undergoes helps property values and community morale, as Rick Dover of Knoxville has found.

According to Rick Dover, Knoxville has suffered from the recent recession and high unemployment rates. During this time, Rick Dover, a Knoxville businessman, is proud to have been able to help local residents by creating jobs for each area. Rick Dover of Knoxville notes that job creation has followed each of Family Pride Corporation’s projects.

While the nation is gradually recovering, Rick Dover of Knoxville notes that growth has been slow, with hiring gradually improving. At the same time, the number of seniors needing living facilities is growing, according to Rick Dover. Knoxville has a number of abandoned buildings, some historic, and through repurposing those buildings, Rick Dover and Knoxville team members can help communities in a variety of ways.

Each remodeling project requires a talented team of construction workers and contractors, notes Rick Dover, a Knoxville businessman. This team works hard during the process to refurbish buildings, many of which have long been abandoned, according to Rick Dover. Knoxville has a rich past rife with culture and history, Rick Dover of Knoxville tells us, which makes pinpointing the perfect location for the next assisted living community a natural for his team.

Once remodeling is complete, Rick Dover of Knoxville says it’s time for a new round of hiring. Everyone from the executive staff to maintenance workers must be hired to support the new facility, states Rick Dover, Knoxville general manager. Additionally, a full staff of nurses are required to ensure seniors have the care they need, according to Rick Dover. Knoxville has a large population of qualified nurses, eager to work at a community like those Family Pride Corporation provides.

Rick Dover of Knoxville points to recent research that reveals that aging baby boomers will bring a large demand for health care in coming years. To prepare for this, Rick Dover, a Knoxville resident, believes that businesses like Family Pride Corporation must put communities and workers in place.

But Rick Dover and Knoxville Family Pride Corporation know that providing healthcare communities is only part of the equation. Family Pride Corporation centers its focus on providing personalized care to each customer. The team at Family Pride Corporation has found that each family has individual expectations for the care they want for family members, notes Rick Dover. Knoxville residents in particular are independent and interested in finding a home away from home.

In providing the “extras” each customer needs to feel comfortable, Rick Dover of Knoxville knows Family Pride Corporation is doing something special. Dover and Family Pride Corporation staff members are committed to keeping this level of care for many generations to come.

Advice for Improving a Credit Rating


For people who suffer from a poor credit score, there is not always a simple way to correct the problem. However, a few simple tricks can help an individual repair bad credit in preparation for the loan application process.

The first step in addressing the issue is for the applicant to examine the credit report. If a score is too low to qualify, a computer program will run the numbers to define what action the applicant might be able to take. The detailed analysis also determines if there is any way the score can be boosted to snag a better interest rate.

After all these measures are exhausted and the credit score still has not reached an appropriate level, an individual should maintain appropriate credit behavior over a set period of time. If paying bills is a problem, a lending firm can set reminders for clients or enroll them in automatic bill pay.

As far as which debt to pay at first, a lender will likely suggest that a client gather all bills to figure out which ones carry the largest interest rates. The best bet is to pay these bills in full, and then pay a minimum due on the others. When a credit card balance hits zero, it is often recommended that the client cease usage of that card and center their attention on paying off other accounts.

In the past, lenders had recommended that customers close any credit cards that were paid off. Over time, they have begun to shy away from this strategy. These days a client who holds credit cards and controls them responsibly will be considered as less of a risk than a client who holds no credit cards. By owning a suitable payment history, clients can generally bump up their scores and increase possibility of score improvement as balances get reduced.

Late payments will have a major impact on a credit score. Accounts that are more than 30 days late are considered to be delinquent. Anything within the past year on a credit report will carry the most weight when a score is determined.

Integrity Spas: Swim Spa Shipping, Delivery and Installation


Integrity Spas is the nation’s premier online retailer of luxury, custom-built spas. Located in Leawood, Kansas, Integrity Spas provides a full line of luxurious portable spas. Integrity Spas answers questions about setting up a swim spa, one of the larger types of spas they sell.

Q. First of all, what’s the difference between a hot tub and a swim spa?

Integrity Spas: Swim spas are larger, rectangular hot tubs and feature a constant jet stream that

allows you the sensation of swimming against a current. Integrity Spas swim spas also feature seating and jets to enjoy the conventional hot tub experience.

Q. How does the process of buying a swim spa from Integrity Spas work?

Integrity Spas: The ease of purchasing a swim spa from Integrity Spas is second to none. The spa is custom built from the time we receive an order. Upon completion, we contact the buyer to ensure that he or she is ready for delivery. The price of the spa includes free shipping. The swim spas are loaded on a dedicated flatbed truck and shipped directly from the Integrity Spas facility to a buyer’s home. We recommend setting up a mobile crane service to unload the spa and place it in the desired location. Integrity Spas can assist with setting up the mobile crane service, which will typically run $400-600.

Q. Is it wired just like a regular hot tub?

Integrity Spas: Yes, it can be wired in one of two ways but should be done by a licensed electrician. The first and most common way is using a GFCI load center (ground fault circuit interrupt), which is a weatherproof subpanel mounted outdoors near the spa. The GFCI load center should be placed somewhere between the Integrity Spas unit and the electrical panel in the home, typically 6 feet from the spa. It prevents circuit overloads.

Q. What is the other way?

Integrity Spas: An alternate way of connecting the power to the spa is installing a GFCI breaker in the home panel and setting up a cutoff switch outdoors near the spa. The cutoff switch is designed as an emergency shutoff for the spa, not as a power switch. Either way, the Integrity Spas unit needs to be hard-wired with three-wire 220V wiring. The Integrity Spas “spa pack” electrical panel is located on the same side as the topside control and approximately directly below it.

Q. What about the foundation?

Integrity Spas: The spa needs to be on a level, hard surface with good drainage where it’s not susceptible to flooding. Integrity Spas recommends that a new swim spa be placed on a concrete or framed pea gravel surface or spa Handi-Pad (available at However, should a buyer decide to place the swim spa on a wood deck, raised deck, or a balcony, Integrity Spas recommends consulting a structural engineer to confirm that the surface will support the spa’s full weight.

Q. What else should consumers know about installation?

Integrity Spas: Water should always drain away from the spa, and the spa should be placed so all four sides are accessible. Buyers shouldn’t install the spa near any electrical appliances. Integrity Spas also recommend installing self-closing, self-locking gates in a fenced yard. Buyers should check with city codes for proper height requirement for the fence.


David Contarino: Investing in the Progressive Future of New Mexico

David Contarino David Contarino explains Rainbow Vision Santa Fe, where he has owned two units as investment properties and was an investor in the original development corporation.

Along with wife Linda, David Contarino owns several LLCs that rent properties in New Mexico to various tenants. The couple have owned multiple properties through the years and have profited by investing at the right time, reaping commercial rent payments to cover property

costs, and selling at the right time. Here, David Contarino offers information about Rainbow Vision Santa Fe—a retirement village tucked in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains and targeted to gay and lesbian seniors. The couple, aside from being the initial investors in the community, have owned two condos in the development.

Why the LGBT community?

David Contarino explains that as a growing percentage of American seniors spend their retirement years with a life partner, investing in a nontraditional retirement facility seemed logical. Understanding that the aging population was more and more open about their sexual orientation, Linda and David Contarino happily accepted the challenge. The couple believes that everyone should have a place where they feel accepted.

Service and amenities

Rainbow Vision Santa Fe, remarks David Contarino, has all of the amenities of a mainstream retirement living center, and plenty of perks, too. David Contarino reports that one of the first features visitors comment on is the view. Rainbow Vision is located with a full panorama of a seemingly never-ending row of peaks as diverse as the men and women who live there. After that, David Contarino says the campus’ luxury and elegance speaks for itself.

David Contarino notes that Rainbow Vision Santa Fe offers several models of one- and two- bedroom apartment homes, Garbos– a fine dining facility operated by an executive chef, Starlight Lounge—a full bar with happy hour,  the Billie Jean King Fitness Center & Spa, and the whimsically named Edward Scissorhands Salon. According to David Contarino, Rainbow Vision Santa Fe boasts a calendar full of activities that allow residents to mix and mingle.

Living options

David Contarino explains that Rainbow Vision Santa Fe is fully equipped to care for active seniors through independent, transitional and assisted living options.

The Chelsea Village Independent Community or Club Condo Living options offer residents full or limited membership to the center’s many facilities. A full membership includes access to Rainbow Vision’s clubhouse, takeout from Garbo’s, housekeeping and transportation. David Contarino explains that residents in this level of care are responsible only for phone and Internet connection. David Contarino also notes that basic cable is included. Independent living guests may purchase other services individually, says David Contarino.

David Contarino explains that the intermediate level of care is transitional living. This is for seniors who wish to remain active but don’t want to slow down to cook and clean up after meals. According to David Contarino, transitional living allows for full independence.

Fully licensed, Castro Assisted Living is located on the second level of the El Centro Clubhouse, says David Contarino. Castro residents enjoy 24/7 staffing and an exclusive dining room with three chef-prepared meals per day.

From its open-air courtyard to its deluxe décor, David Contarino truly believes there is no senior living facility better equipped to meet the needs of active seniors. And, as the needs of the LGBT population grow, David Contarino feels this investment serves to exemplify the progression of the American West.

David Contarino is a Democratic political consultant based out of Louisville, Kentucky. His love for New Mexico comes from his 17 years living in Santa Fe and Taos amid the high altitude desert and soaring peaks of the Sangre de Cristo mountains.

Kosher Supervision of America (KSA Kosher) on the Definition of Kosher

KSA Kosher Kosher Supervision of America (KSA Kosher), which specializes in Kashrus certification, is a not-for-profit agency located in the western United States. KSA Kosher has received recognition by rabbinical associations all across the world. Here, KSA Kosher explains the basic rules of being kosher.

ZRYLW: Thank you for taking the time to discuss Kosher foods with us today.

KSA Kosher: Thank you for having me.

ZRYLW: What does the term “kosher” mean?

KSA Kosher: “Kosher” typically refers to things that are “proper” or “fit.”

ZRYLW: In what ways is the term “kosher” used?

KSA Kosher: In most cases, the term “kosher” is utilized as a description of foods permitted to be eaten by those who are in observance of Jewish dietary law.

ZRYLW: What kinds of foods are considered non-kosher?

KSA Kosher: Food is considered non-kosher for a number of different reasons.

ZRYLW: Such as?

KSA Kosher: Reasons include the animal species, improper processing or slaughtering procedures and the usage of ingredients.

ZRYLW: Is eating meat allowed?

KSA Kosher: Some meats are kosher, but meat and dairy cannot be mixed.

ZRYLW: What about food preparation?

KSA Kosher: Food must be prepared with non-kosher equipment or utensils.

ZRYLW: I’ve heard the term “kashrus,” too. What does “kashrus” mean?

KSA Kosher: “Kashrus” is a term used to define the concept of these dairy laws. It pertains to the kinds of foods that are permitted for both consumption, as well as their preparation.

ZRYLW: Are rules standard across the board?

KSA Kosher: Each food category is subject to a certain set of laws.

ZRYLW: What meats are labeled as kosher?

KSA Kosher: The Torah regards kosher animals as ones who have split hooves and chew their own cud.

ZRYLW: And these are?

KSA Kosher: Veal, lamb and beef are kosher meats.

ZRYLW: Not pork?

KSA Kosher: Pork is not.Wild game is also not certified kosher.

ZRYLW: What seafood is not allowed?

KSA Kosher: Squid, shellfish and mollusks are not kosher. Eel isn’t either.

ZRYLW: How do food preparers learn to keep foods kosher?

KSA Kosher: Butchers require special training so that they are aware of which cuts of meat can be certified kosher and how to prepare them.

ZRYLW: How popular is being kosher?

KSA Kosher: Over 7 million Americans designate themselves as kosher.

ZRYLW: That’s quite a number.

KSA Kosher: Definitely. In fact, kosher products account for $150 billion in food sales each year.

To learn more about KSA Kosher, visit the company online at

Helping Advice for the Aspiring Actor

Q: What is an essential tip for acting success?

A: Stay on time. Films and television shows cost quite a lot of money to produce. If an actor is just a few minutes late for a paid gig, the director, producer and the entire crew will be extremely disappointed and could question their choice of actor. If an actor shows up after a scheduled audition time, the casting director will be concerned about an ongoing issue of tardiness.

On that note, show business runs on irregular hours and extended workdays. Without the endurance and positive energy necessary to withstand a long day on the set, an actor will find success impossible to attain.

Q: What kind of schedule can be expected?

A: For an actor in the television or movie business, a 9-to-5 schedule is just not feasible given the nature of the work. Most actors must rise before dawn to ensure they are fully prepared for the day and can arrive at the set on time. In theatre, the call time might be 10 a.m. because the actors work well into the night. The long, intense hours required mean that actors will spend roughly half their lives with co-workers.

Be cordial and respectful to all people involved with the production to maintain harmony on the set. Establishing a negative attitude in the beginning stages of a job will have a noted impact on the rest of the staff.

Q: How else can actors improve their routines?

A: Always be clean and well groomed. It should go without saying, but bathe regularly and have fresh breath. Anyone with poor hygiene will earn a bad reputation and miss out on future acting opportunities. Complaining regularly is also a sure way to cause tension on the set. Some actors in show business choose to complain about the realities of the job – the food, the director, fellow actors, costume assistants, dressing rooms, lack of work, long hours, the script and almost anything else. Being labeled a complainer can damage the career of even the most talented actor. Word does get around.



Mallory Fleming Praises Monterosso, Italy for Its Stunning Scenery

Mallory Fleming recently visited Monterosso, a popular tourist location on the coast of Italy. After soaking up the wonderful atmosphere, Mallory Fleming suggests helpful tips for those who want to experience the beauty and serenity of Monterosso for themselves.

Q: Why is Monterosso such a wonderful destination?

Mallory Fleming: Monterosso is the best place for people who desire rest and relaxation with a dash of adventure. After arrival, a seaside boardwalk leads to a beautiful white sandy beach.

Q: What activities do you recommend?

Mallory Fleming: A boat tour of the Cinque Terre, a rugged section of coast along the Italian Riviera, helps visitors appreciate the five fishing villages in the area.

Q: What else is prominent about the Cirque Terre?

Mallory Fleming: The Cinque Terre is also a treasured spot for hikers and outdoors enthusiasts.

Q: What advice do you have for first-time visitors of Monterosso?

Mallory Fleming: The best way to travel to Monterosso is via local train from Genoa or La Spezia, or by taking an Intercity train originating from Turin, Tuscany, Milan or Rome. The expansive train network also reaches other villages along the Cinque Terre.

Q: Why trains instead of cars?

Mallory Fleming: Parking is expensive in Monterosso, so motor transportation is not recommended. Driving through public areas is often prohibited.

Q: What about Italian dining?

Mallory Fleming:  Needless to say, Italian food is a real treasure. The gelato in particular is a must.

Q: What’s different from American meals?

Mallory Fleming: At lunchtime, the Italians do not rush back to their routines. Diners are encouraged to bask in the local music and culture.

Q: What should visitors do after lunch?

Mallory Fleming: For some afternoon fun, a leisurely stroll through the village streets reveals a series of attractive houses with offbeat colors and distinct shapes.

Eat Healthy to Prevent Cancer and Disease, Says Kelley Hamilton of Bonaventure

Kelley Hamilton Bonaventure

Kelley Hamilton of Bonaventure Senior Living knows a thing or two about seniors. Kelley Hamilton of Bonaventure believes that seniors who want to feel better and live healthier should pay attention to what’s in their kitchen. As chief executive officer, Kelley Hamilton of Bonaventure Senior Living makes sure the company’s chefs prepare a variety of healthy meal options.

According to Kelley Hamilton of Bonaventure, about a third of all cancers could be prevented by maintaining a healthy weight through nutritious diet and regular

exercise, researchers have found. Emerging science also states what combination of foods appears to offer the most protection against cancer, says Kelley Hamilton of Bonaventure. Below, Kelley Hamilton of Bonaventure talks about the health benefits fruits, vegetables and whole grains.

ZRYLW:  We’re glad you could join us today, Kelley. Thank you for coming.

Kelley Hamilton, Bonaventure CEO: It’s my pleasure.

ZRYLW:  Healthy and delicious food is often listed as a reason people make their homes at Bonaventure Senior Living. Is it really that good?

Kelley Hamilton, Bonaventure CEO: Our food is exceptional. Our chefs prepare nutritious and delicious dishes every day. They only use the finest and freshest ingredients to keep our seniors healthy and strong.

ZRYLW:  Research shows that certain foods can help prevent diseases and some even offer protection against cancer. Does your menu reflect these studies?

Kelley Hamilton, Bonaventure CEO: Absolutely. Our menus consist of natural foods that offer functional benefits, and certain ingredients rise to the top of our menu.

ZRYLW:  Can you name some of the ingredients?

Kelley Hamilton, Bonaventure CEO: Salmon, for example, is a great source of healthy protein and fats. Our chefs prepare fabulous salmon.

ZRYLW:  Are vegetables and grains served with most meals?

Kelley Hamilton, Bonaventure CEO: Yes, we serve a lot of broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, Swiss chard, Brussels sprouts and kale. They are known to release enzymes into the body, which break down chemicals that cause cancer and may slow tumor growth. Tomatoes are great, too. They contain an antioxidant that helps prevent breast, bladder, cervical, lung, colorectal, prostate and skin cancer. Whole wheat pasta and brown rice are filling and healthy.

ZRYLW:  What are some good cancer fighting fruits?

Kelley Hamilton, Bonaventure CEO: Blueberries, cherries, plums, red and purple grapes contain anthocyanins and antioxidants that help neutralize cancer-causing substances and may prevent stomach cancer. Our seniors like to add them to cereal, yogurt or pudding.

ZRYLW:  So anything with natural bright color is a good choice?

Kelley Hamilton, Bonaventure CEO: The easiest way to eat healthy is to think colors. The more colors on your plate, the more nutrients in your body.

ZRYLW:  What do seniors at Bonaventure eat for breakfast?

Kelley Hamilton, Bonaventure CEO: Whole grains are healthy, so we encourage our residents to start their day with at least two servings of whole grains, such as a full bowl of oatmeal, bran cereal, or two slices of whole wheat toast.

ZRYLW:  Any healthy drinks you can recommend?

Kelley Hamilton, Bonaventure CEO: Green tea is wonderful because it contains antioxidants that can help protect against colon, skin and stomach cancer. Iced or hot tea is a healthy addition to any menu.


Kelley Hamilton, Bonaventure CEO, manages an assisted living community where seniors live life on their own terms. Kelley Hamilton of Bonaventure joined the company in 2001. Kelley Hamilton of Bonaventure oversees the company’s 4,500 units across the country. Kelley Hamilton of Bonaventure lives in Oregon.

Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO, on Genetic Testing

PamGrayBonaventureSeniorLivingGenetic Testing

Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO, has noticed a distinct shift in how individuals go about tracing their family histories. For seniors interested in understanding their own unique legacies, Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO, presents the important elements of genetic testing.

ZRYLW: How has genetic testing changed in the last decade?

Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: In the early stages of genetic DNA testing, individuals were forced to build their own studies. This is still a viable option, though more tools are now available.

ZRYLW: Is there a better way to go about it?

Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: Joining an existing project is more beneficial these days. Newcomers can be inundated with information, and this allows the first-time user to have assistance in their search.

ZRYLW: How does an existing process ease stress?

Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: By taking part in a project that’s already started, seniors have the ability to focus on names that appear throughout their family trees.

ZRYLW: Where does one begin?

Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: Several options exist, but most of those involve the Internet. If a computer is not available at home, the local library will offer Internet services to visitors.

ZRYLW: What is a common website for these purposes?

Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: There are several options available online; one of these can be found at

ZRYLW: What are some other alternatives?

Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: Public access databases are often searchable by surname and offer contact information for submitters. These databases include and

ZRYLW: Can an individual just use Google?

Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: Many surname projects own websites, so a “surname DNA” query on the chosen search engine will display the desired result within the first few listings.

ZRYLW: What information is required to begin?

Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: Information about the earliest known ancestor and the individual’s connection to this person through generations is necessary. Additional relations will increase the likelihood of success.

ZRYLW: Is genetic testing convenient?

Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: Most websites feature a link for ordering a genetic testing kit right from the testing company. The administration will automatically be notified of the individual’s participation.

ZRYLW: What stipulations are in place?

Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: The individual must sign a consent form to release the testing company of any responsibility.

ZRYLW: How is one notified of a match?

Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: Immediately after a match has been found, administration posts information directly on their websites for perusal by participants.

ZRYLW: What are the odds of a match?

Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO: Results vary depending on the individual, but participants in genetic testing can discover nieces, nephews, cousins and other close relatives.


Pam Gray, Bonaventure Senior Living COO, started in her position in 2007. She has more than 20 years of experience working in the field of retirement living.