Tenth Edition … !
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Viva Village LogoViva Village Voice ed. #9
Newsletter Contents
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The Viva Village Voice
is a bi-monthly
e-publication of Viva Village. 
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Do it yourself

I can still do it, but…

friends made
DIY Syndrome?
 Ross, editor
Not one—can you believe it?—not one Viva Village member asked for help during our recent record-breaking snow storm. Perhaps some of us assumed VV volunteers were as snowbound as we were. We may have assumed that the VV office would be closed—which it was—forgetting that even when the office is not open, every message gets a response. And, it turns out that out of the 57 VV Volunteers, some were actually able and available to shovel walks and driveways or deliver groceries or prescriptions, etc. Why did no one call?
We discussed this question at the January VV members meeting. One answer: VV members tend to be self-sufficient types. After all, we are persons who prefer living in our own homes rather than in facilities where others handle many of the usual household tasks: raking leaves, clearing gutters, pulling weeds, shoveling snow, updating WiFi systems, etc.

It’s not easy for such independent folk to accept help from others. Still, as we members pondered our openness to some assistance from others, we heard phrases like these:
  • “I can still do it, but it’s not as easy as it used to be. It’s harder. It takes longer.”
  • “I can still do it, but I’d rather not. It’s hard on my hands and knees.” 
  • “I can still do it and like to do it, but it’s much easier and more fun with some help.”
  • “I can still do it, I don’t mind doing it, but I’d rather spend my time in a different way.”
  • “I can’t do it anymore, it’s too risky (trim high branches, negotiate icy sidewalks, etc.).”
  • “I can’t do it. It’s so complicated (networks, passwords, settings, etc.).”
When we shared what has happened when we have called on volunteers (see, “It Takes a Village” below), we heard stories of money saved, problems solved, labor lightened, and, above all, new friends made.
The Editor
Ideas for Service Requests from
1/21/17 Members Meeting:
Organize garage • spray trees • treecheck under house issues • check tree health and safety • check furnace filters • design easier-care garden • improve irrigation system • deconstruct holiday lights • trees • boxes • move furnituremove furniture • install new faucet • wash windows • move and upgrade planters • shovel sidewalks and driveway • clear drains • clean floors and rugs • pick up mail • pick up mailremove/take out trash • check leaky roof • do errands • shopping • organizing help • set up equipment • technology help: computer/phone/TV/tablet/scanner/ DVD • tech helpstretching/ balancing help •
• walking/exercise buddy • clean shelves/cabinets/refrigerators • monitor vendor visits • chaining tires • change sheetschange sheets/flip mattresses • apply bark dust • plug vents • power wash • set up emergency supplies • dust ceiling lights • clean blinds • touch up paint • minor plumbing repair • hang mirrors/pictures • hanging picturesorganize closets • install smoke detectors  • install batteries • change light bulbs • install grab bars • evaluate driveway • light weeding • heighten veggie planters • pacify neighbors • tax return advice • organize garage window washing• solve quadratic equations • etc.
Also reported at the 1/21/17 Member’s Meeting:

A Growing List of Vendors ready to serve VV Members

(Each approved vendor has been recommended by a person connected with Viva Village, undergone a thorough screening process, and has been interviewed by a representative of Viva Village. It takes about six hours of volunteer time to complete the process for each vendor. Please make your vendor recommendations by calling the office: 503-746-5082.)
HOME MAINTENANCE—appliance repair • construction/remodel • home modifications for seniors and screened electriciandisabled • electricians • home heating and cooling • carpets/floor cleaning • grout/tile • gutters/windows/roof/moss removal • fire and water clean-up/restoration • rubbish/junk removal and recycles • general handyman • garage door repair and replacement • rug cleaning vendorgeneral housecleaning • painters • pest control • plumbing.
YARD MAINTENANCE—scheduled maintenance • pruning • small engine lawn equipment lawn care vendor• landscape design and building • arborists for tree removal and pruning • irrigation.

PERSONAL SERVICES—computer in-home support • personal assistant (bill paying, house sitting, organizing) • piano tuning.

HEALTH SERVICES—emergency/non emergency medical transport • health and fitness • home safety fitness
and accessibility evaluation.
Want to know more about Viva Village Membership?

Viva Village Members

Viva Village Members

Viva Village Members

Viva Village Members
1) Attend one of the monthly Village 101 Presentations (see below)

2) Call the Viva Village office (503-746-5082) between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., Mon. through Thurs.

3) Consult one-on-one with Viva Village reps about the costs and benefits of Viva Village membership at an Elsie Stuhr Center event, Thurs., Feb. 23, 11 a.m. to noon, in the Center’s Cedar Room, 5500 SW Hall Blvd.

Discover the difference between Full Service and Associate Memberships, payment options, and membership fee assistance. (Viva Village has funds from a City of Beaverton grant and other designated gifts to help a limited number of persons with membership fees.

(Get out your phone, touch the Calendar App, and/or bring down the scenic February calendar hanging over the breakfast nook, or whatever … )
First, this Month’s Specials:
Saturday, February 11, 10:30 a.m. – Noon
Organize and Simplify Your Possessions
and Time!

Getting organizedtechniques to bring order to your home
and peace of mind into your life
a workshop led by Beth Giles,
Professional Organizer and Move Manager
(NW Organizing Solutions, 503-709-0791

Cedar Mill Bible Church
12208 NW Cornell Road, Room 101
Portland, OR 97229

(Even those of us who don’t need a clutter consultant have friends who do.
Be sure to invite them. It’s free!)

Please RSVP: 503-746-5082 or 
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Monday, February 13, 1:45-3:30 p.m.
Celebrating 15 years of the Village Movement
Beacon Hill Village (where the Village Idea began) presents
Atul Gawande MD. MPH in a live video broadcast:
The Value of Community and
Choice as We Grow Older
Dr. Atul Gawande
Beaverton Library Auditorium
12375 SW 5th Street

Dr. Gawande is a renowned surgeon, public health researcher and writer, and author of the influential book, Being Mortal.

The webinar presentation is facilitated by three Portland area Villages: River West, Village without Walls, and Viva Village.

RSVP: 503-746-5082 or
And don’t forget other Viva Village events:
– Information for perspective members and/or volunteers

Thursday, February 9
7:00–8:30 p.m.

Private home in Vista Hills neighborhood
(Near to Highways 217 and 26)
RSVP: or 503-746-5082
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(Those providing direct service to members, office staff, Village support, member Interviewers come together to share experiences, ideas, satisfactions, frustrations, and questions.)

Wednesday, February 15volunteer
1:30-3:30 p.m.

Beaverton Community Center
12350 SW 5th (across from Beaverton Library)

RSVP:, or 503-746-5082

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February 16, 6:00–8:00 p.m.
(Friends of Viva Village—members, volunteers and others—gather
to eat and enjoy one another’s company.)

Thai Aspara Restaurant
On Trader Joe’s side of the Beaverton Town Square
11793 SW Beaverton-Hillsdale Hwy.
green papaya salad(And yes, they do have Green Papaya Salad)

RSVP: or 503-746-5082
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(A doctor, a navy veteran, a minister, a scientist, and a high tech guy walk into a coffee shop … and discover there are 3 chocolate options for coffee cupmocha: dark, white, and milk.)

Not all the attention centers around coffee, though. Come join us and contribute to the conversation….

February 28, 9:30-10:30 a.m.

Java Lounge, Cedar Mill
Corner of NW Cornell and Dale Ave.

Info: Call 503-713-3563

NATURE WALK — Lowami Hart Woods, Johnson Creek Trail
(Each month Viva Villagers explore a nearby natural area.)

Saturday, March 4, 10:00 a.m.

14895 SW Hart Road, just west of MurrayOn the Lowami Hart Woods trail

Meet in the parking lot at 10:00 and enjoy a walk with friends along a lovely forested trail accompanied by the sound of a rushing brook.

Information:, click on Calendar or 503-841-2358


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(Once a month Viva Villagers and friends check out nearby venues.)
Wednesday, March 8, 12:30 p.m.
lunching at Seasons and Regions
Seasons and Regions

6660 SW Capitol Highway
Portland, 97219
Please RSVP: to Frieda at or 510-693-2955

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(A cadre of bold, literate folks continually expand parameters of knowledge and understanding, one volume at a time.)
March 28, 6:30-8:30 p.m.Hotel at the Corner of Bitter and Sweet
Somewhere safe, secure, and near
Selected book:
Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, by Jamie Ford

A story of “deep-heart love” in the Japanese-American community of Seattle during WW II
(2009 NY Times bestseller)
Contact: or call 503-644-7417)



When  Wally Met Sandy

Wally and Sandy
It is a truth universally acknowledged…

...that a single man in possession of an Unfinished Knitting Project must be in in want…

...of a knitting teacher of course!

And that, dear reader, is how it all began. Wally Carey: a widower who found an orphan "toe sock" in the knitting basket of his late wife, whose specialty was toe-covering socks for the lucky recipients of toe-cast-wearing patients at St. Vincent’s Hospital. Sadly, her last generous sock languished, unfinished, in the basket. Knitting looked like fun to Wally, and a bit of online information got him started. Until the moment of truth—getting the knitting on the needles, known as “casting on."

Enter Sandy Ruff: the big knitting maven, widowed also, and, ta da—a 10-year-member of an RV group with her late husband and Wally and his wife.  Hardly rocket science for Wally's daughter to suggest Sandy when he was scouring his brain for a knitting guru. The stage was set for a meeting. Yarn, needles, and happy hour at McCormick & Schmick’s launched a happy re-meeting. One sock led to another and 1.5 years later they were married. (Match dot com didn’t even have to enter the picture). Prenuptial requirements, however: Knitting For Dummies for Wally before the knot was tied. (Sandy strikes a hard bargain.)

Now Wally and Sandy, generous Viva Village volunteers, have purchased together a one-story home Sandy and Wallythat practices what Viva Village preaches: ADA equipped—doorways wide enough for a brace of oxen to pass through, all the right apparatus in the bathrooms, kitchen counters the proper height for any future wheel chairs—a wonderful springboard from which to parlay their volunteer magic.

Wally can be found fixing a skylight, with Sandy holding the ladder. Together they've already swept a garden free of leaves, in record time, and cleaned gutters. And when some heavy furniture had fallen out of favor with a member, the trusty Carey pickup truck whisked the behemoths to Goodwill. Less athletic volunteering for Wally includes training prospective Viva Village drivers, he already having been trained by Ride Connection.
Wally and Sandy providing volunteer service

Further, they both have begun interviewing would-be members for the Village. Although Sandy works part-time still at Legacy, speaking fondly of many years in the operating room, she looks ahead to being a health care buddy, a natural for someone with 50 years as a nurse. Wally claims to have retired three times from work in forestry products, then continuing as a CEO of a major nursery system, finally moving into the world of finance, before opting for a somewhat improbable career finale as a school bus driver. Extra-Viva Village volunteer work takes him to St. Vincent's to help with patient discharge activity.

Back at their Bethany-area house, Sandy proudly shows off a lovingly restored 1945 Army jeep, a giddy neighborhood fixture. A Christmas visit with the not-quite-so-newlyweds offered a winning view of holiday decorations, on and off the famous knitting needles. Wally’s now legendary Christmas socks, many for the myriad grandchildren and great-grandchildren, festooned the mantle, and a parade of vintage Yule figures from years past competed with fat bearded Santas. Truly a season to be jolly in the welcoming home of two valued and talented Viva Village volunteers.

Ellin Johnson
Interviewer and writer: Ellin Johnson
Graphic artist: Judith Feinstein
Photos provided by Wally and Sandy

For 2016:
52 volunteers logged 9,928 hours of service!

For December 2016:
28 volunteers provided 667 hours of service.

In future issues of the Viva Village Voice we will record two areas of service:
  1. volunteers providing services to members, and
  2. volunteers working to keep Viva Village a viable organization—office staff, action team members, et al.
Please remember that Viva Village has no paid staff.
We are a 100% volunteer organization.

In the first nine issues of the Viva Village Voice, we read tales of Viva Villagers saved from dilemmas by the actions of VVVVs—Viva Village Vetted Volunteers or Viva Village Vetted Vendors. These accounts were, strictly speaking, fictional, though often based on true stories from other Villages around the country.

But now that Viva Village is fully operational, we will use testimony from Viva Village, though names will be withheld to protect the shy.

One December Tuesday morning I woke up to telephone calls from friends asking if they could help.Tech Help 1

Unbeknownst to me they had received an email that I was traveling and needed money quickly.

Two other emails followed this, mentioning other situations for which I needed help.

I had been hacked; later learned this was called a phishing hack.

Tech Help 2I tried to respond to everyone by email and found that my account was frozen; I could not receive or send emails.

For two days in between meetings and other responsibilities I tried to figure out what to do.
Tech Help 3
I actually called a computer repairperson I had used before, got help from other friends who tried to solve the problem, still was unable to use my computer.

— I was totally frustrated. —

Finally, it dawned on me that as a Viva Village associate member I had two service appointments available.

Immediately I called the office and signed up for a technology support service; within hours heard back from one of the Viva Village volunteers who came to my home that evening.

It didn’t take this master technician much time to find out that someone had been able to access my computer and turn off my computer’s functioning, including wiping out my contact list.

Then he spent another two hours looking through my computer trying to find out where the hack had come Tech Help 4from.

We never did find out the exact source of the hack but the thoroughness of his investigation made me confident that my computer was safe to use and I wouldn’t be spreading a virus to others.

The response to my service request was so outstanding I began to think I should up my membership to full service instead of associate membership.

I felt so well taken care of and secure that Viva Village was looking out for my well-being.

It was a completely satisfying experience.
(Note: Associate Members receive two volunteer service calls per year.
In case of an emergency, such as serious surgery, they can also
receive full services for one month. Full members are eligible to receive approximately eight service calls each month.)
Back issues of The Viva Village Voice (August, October, and December 2015, February, April, June, August, October. and December 2016) may be viewed on the website, Viva Village is a member of the Villages NW nonprofit Hub and Spoke Network. We are one of seven Villages in the Portland metro area. Four Villages—Eastside Village, Viva Village, Village Without Walls, and Northeast Portland-PDX Village are open and providing services to members. Three other Villages are making good progress towards opening next year or soon after.
To learn more about the Village Movement locally, nationally, and internationally, please visit Villages NW online at or email Contact The Viva Village Voice at
Viva Village
4905 SW Griffith Dr., Suite 108
Beaverton OR 97008

Office Hours:
Monday – Thursday
10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.


Newsletter Staff:
Editor, Ross Miller Roving Reporter, Ellin Johnson
Graphic Artist, Judith Feinstein Hard Copy Distributor, Darleene Meyer
Layout, Kathy Brown  
Share with a friend.
VIva Village is a member of the Villages NW nonprofit Hub & Spoke Network.
Copyright © 2017 Viva Village, All rights reserved.

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