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News

Street crack-sealing project begins Monday, May 4

The City of Los Altos is beginning a city-wide street crack-sealing project on Monday (May 4).

City officials said the traffic impact for this project will be minimal. No streets will be closed and vehicles can resume normal traffic flow shortly aft...

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Schools

Homestead students use projects  to solve environmental problems

Homestead students use projects to solve environmental problems


Alisha Parikh/Special to the Town Crier
Homestead High School junior Maya Dhar, a Los Altos resident, left, and classmate Carolyn MacDonald support the school’s AP Environmental Science classes at the Arbor Day Festival April 23.

As summer app...

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Community

CHAC appoints new leader

CHAC appoints new leader

Naomi Nakano-Matsumoto, LCSW, has been named the new executive director of the Community Health Awareness Council (CHAC). A seasoned nonprofit leader, Nakano-Matsumoto is scheduled to assume duties July 1. She takes over for outgoing executive direct...

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Sports

St. Francis swimmers shine

St. Francis swimmers shine


Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
St. Francis High’s Benjamin Ho competes against Sacred Heart Cathedral Thursday. The junior swam on all three victorious relays at the home meet, which the Lancers won easily.

Flexing its power in the pool, host St....

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Comment

Halsey House deserves preservation: Other Voices

Halsey House deserves preservation: Other Voices


Many contributing supporters to the Friends of Historic Redwood Grove believe that the Halsey House, designated a historic landmark by the Los Altos City Council in 1981, deserves to be saved and renovated for adapted use by the community.

Set in ...

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Special Sections

Sneaky shots: A photographer’s guide to capturing the proposal

Sneaky shots: A photographer’s guide to capturing the proposal


Elliott Burr/Special to the Town Crier
A stealthy photographer scouts locations ahead of time to find not just a place to perch, but also the ideal position for the subjects.

It’s showtime.

You’re about to ask the person in front of...

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Business

Pharmaca celebrates grand opening over weekend

Pharmaca celebrates grand opening over weekend


Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Pharmaca is coming to 400 Main St. with a grand-opening celebration scheduled Saturday and Sunday.

If natural health and beauty products are your cup of tea, expect to find them – and hot tea – this weekend at the gran...

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Books

People

JANE BUTTERFIELD PRINGLE LYND

JANE BUTTERFIELD PRINGLE LYND

October 30, 1924 - April 8, 2015

Jane Butterfield Pringle Lynd, daughter to Liebert and Elise Butterfield of San Francisco, passed away quietly at her home in Palo Alto surrounded by her family, following a short illness. Jane was a proud third ge...

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Travel

Cuba libre: Local residents join mad rush of travelers

Cuba libre: Local residents join mad rush of travelers


Natalie Elefant/Special to the Town Crier
Los Altos resident Natalie Elefant noted the vibrant street performances as a traveler in Cuba.

The U.S. restored diplomatic relations with Cuba late last year, enabling Americans to import $100 worth of cig...

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Stepping Out

'Birds' landing in Mtn. View

'Birds' landing in Mtn. View


Ray Renati/Special to the Town Crier
The Pear Avenue Theatre production of Paul Braverman’s “Birds of a Feather” stars Troy Johnson as mafia boss Sean Kineen, left, and Diane Tasca as private eye Frankie Payne.

Pear Avenue Theatre’s world premi...

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Spiritual Life

Magazine

Practice prudent pruning: Maintaining manzanita, ceanothus and toyon

Practice prudent pruning: Maintaining manzanita, ceanothus and toyon


tanya kucak/Special to the Town Crier
Shrub manzanitas are known for their sinuous mahogany trunks and branches. If the foliage hides the bark, prune selectively to open the center so that the bark is visible year-round. This Montara manzanita is ...

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Inside Mountain View

Up to the challenge: Local leaders unite to help at-risk youth

Up to the challenge: Local leaders unite to help at-risk youth


Courtesy of Challenge Team
Jeanette Freiberg, bottom of pile, has fun with family members. The Challenge Team named Freiberg, a student at Mountain View High School, its 2015 Youth Champion.

There’s an ongoing joke among members of the Challenge...

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Mild Cognitive Dementia: Boosting brain health, reducing risk


Many of us have experienced a “senior moment” – you forget where you parked the car or you can’t quite find the word you want to say. As we age, we notice changes in our ability to remember and worry if it is a sign of normal aging or something more serious, such as dementia. When is it time to be concerned?

There is a gradual continuum of symptoms associated with the development of dementia, starting with the cognitive changes associated with normal aging. In between the two ends of the spectrum is a clinical diagnosis of Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI). The Alzheimer’s Association reports that between 10 and 20 percent of Americans over age 65 suffer from MCI.

In 2011, the National Institute on Aging and the Alzheimer’s Association collaborated to establish criteria used to diagnose the condition, defined as “cognitive changes serious enough to be noticed by the individuals experiencing them or other people, but not severe enough to interfere with daily life or independent function.” Because is it often difficult to differentiate the symptoms of MCI from those that would be considered “normal,” patients with suspected MCI can undergo a series of neuropsychological memory tests.

A diagnosis of MCI is considered a risk factor for developing Alzheimer’s disease, but that is a far from a certain outcome. Some people with MCI never get worse, and a few actually get better.

Life with MCI can be challenging. Patients and caregivers need to find ways to adapt to varying symptoms and learn new skills for managing the condition. Finding help for this poorly understood condition can be difficult.

Resources for MCI sufferers

A new book, “Living with Mild Cognitive Impairment: A Guide to Maximizing Brain Health and Reducing Risk of Dementia” (Oxford University Press, 2013), is the first written specifically for individuals diagnosed with MCI and their caregivers. It is an invaluable resource filled with practical information that can help the many people impacted by the condition.

Authors Nicole D. Anderson, Kelly J. Murphy and Angela K. Troyer are neuropsychologists who work with MCI patients. Their experience and knowledge shine throughout the book. “Living with Mild Cognitive Impairment” provides an in-depth yet understandable portrait of MCI, including how it differs from dementia, how it is diagnosed and how it is treated.

The final section of the book – “What Can Be Done to Improve Prognosis?” – is perhaps the most valuable. It includes scientifically based strategies for coping with and combating cognitive decline. Diet, exercise, cognitive and social engagement are addressed.

The final chapter, “Memory Strategies,” is full of exercises and tips for improving day-to-day functioning. Case studies throughout the book illustrate concepts, and each chapter offers suggestions for questions to ask the doctor.

Ever wonder what it feels like to experience dementia? Psychologist Richard Taylor compiled a fascinating collection of essays in his book “Alzheimer’s from the Inside Out” (Health Professions Press, 2007). Taylor, diagnosed with Alzheimer’s at age 58, eloquently and candidly chronicles his decline.

Taylor reminds us that those living with dementia are complete human beings with the same desires and needs as anyone else. Diagnosed with probable Alzheimer’s 10 years ago, he has dedicated his life to what he calls “humanizing dementia care.” In addition to his book, he has a website and blog, richardtaylorphd.com, where he invites anyone to contact him. This insightful book is highly recommended for caregivers, both personal and professional, and may even be appropriate for some Alzheimer’s patients.

Both “Living with Mild Cognitive Impairment” and “Alzheimer’s from the Inside Out” can be found on the shelves of Stanford Health Library. To learn more about Mild Cognitive Impairment and dementia prevention, diagnosis and treatment, call, email or stop by a branch. Librarians and trained volunteers will help with research, free of charge.

The main branch of Stanford Health Library is located at Hoover Pavilion, 211 Quarry Road, Suite 201. Other branches are located on the first floor of Stanford Hospital and the main level of Stanford’s Cancer Center.

Nancy Dickenson is head librarian at Stanford Health Library. For more information, call 725-8400 or visit healthlibrary.stanford.edu.

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