The Bigger Picture, Issue 5

Like sands through the hourglass, so are the days of our…blog posts? It’s Blog Wednesday! Welcome to the fifth issue of The Bigger Picture!

Imagination & Delight

Being non-verbal does not equate to being non-communicative. This is a concept that seems to be misunderstood (or even unknown) to so many in our world today. But adorable little Giselle Bewley of Florida is showing us that it is so very alive and so very true, through her pictures of visits to Disney parks in her excellent costumes sewn by her mother, Kristina. Giselle has Down Syndrome and her mother describes her as “non-verbal”, but that doesn’t stop her from showing exactly how she feels.  Take a look at these pictures and you can feel the delight Giselle is communicating to us through her face and body language.


Exercise for People With Disabilities

All of us have challenges in our daily life, regardless of our physicality or our mental make-up. Something that seems to be challenging for both individuals with disabilities as well as those without disabilities is the dreaded e-word…exercise! US News take a closer look at this topic and offers some tips and insights.


Mobile App Spotlight: MediSafe

Have you ever had difficulty remembering whether or not you took a dose of your daily medicine? Do you have trouble remember a medication schedule for a relative or friend? Do you need your caregiver to know more about your medicines, in an interactive way? Then MediSafe is the mobile application for you! MediSafe helps people track their medicine schedule, determine when their last dosage of a medication was, track doctor’s appointments and share your medication data with others who use the app! Head over to their website, where you’ll find links to your app store for download.



Staff Spotlight – Christina Holtzclaw

Each week on The Bigger Picture we’ll be bringing you a closer look at one of our wonderful staff members. Do you know who the Number 2 lady is here at NWGACIL? Who is Maia’s Commander Riker? (Star Trek references are always great.) Even more importantly, do you know who Felicia’s human is?? It’s none other than Christina Holtzclaw, our Assistant Director! Keep reading below to learn more about her!

Christina Holtzclaw

Christina Holtzclaw

What do you do at NWGACIL? Assistant Director, I work with all programs and services, help with projects/events, and social media for the center.

How long have you worked with NWGACIL? I’ve worked here for 11 years.

Do you have a disability? Yes, I’ve been blind all my life.  I was born prematurely and it caused complications that caused blindness and later glaucoma.

What topic of independent living do you find most important? Socialization is a part of independent living that I feel is often overlooked.  So, NWGACIL’s Peer Mentoring is, in my opinion, the most unique service offered at the center.  Often people with disabilities are viewed as “just their disability.”  Often it does not occur to people that people with disabilities want friends, to go on dates, and to be in the community like everyone else.

What’s the best part of working at NWGACIL? There is so much I love about working at NWGA CIL, it’s hard to choose.  But, the family atmosphere that staff have amongst each other is what I enjoy most.  Everyone at the center is ready to help each other, no matter what.  NWGA CIL is the most nurturing atmosphere I’ve ever seen.

What do you do for fun? For fun, I love to run, do yoga, and exercise in my home gym.  Often I take my guide dog, Felicia, with me for long walks (or runs, whichever she prefers at the time.)  I also love must, movies, and playing with my kids.

If you could vacation anywhere in the world, where would you go? I’ve always wanted to visit London. But, there is a place that our family goes in Florida with a secluded beach. I love to go there and just sit on the beach and listen to the waves.

If you could have a superpower, what would you choose? A superpower?  That’s tough one.  As a mom, I need probably all the superpowers!  I guess I would chose flying.  It could be cool to be able to just go where I want, when I want.  Mindreading would be a close second.

What one food do you wish had zero calories? Cheesecake, especially a chocolate cheesecake.

What would you most like to tell yourself at age 13? I would tell myself to relax and enjoy.  Stop worrying so much and sweating the little things.

What’s the best advice you ever received? To wait 24 hours to think about what to say or how to respond to something upsetting.


Recent Updates from NWGACIL… 

Last week, Kathy and Jill made an assistive technology presentation to the residents of Etowah Terrace. The crowd was very receptive, and many were connected with devices to assist them in their daily lives. The Dynamic Duo will return to Etowah Terrace this week to install five weather radios fitted with strobe lights and vibrating devices to help keep residents with sensory disabilities safe as we enter the time of year where weather becomes very unpredictable and dangerous.

Maia and David presented at the Parkinson’s Group meeting last night at Brookdale Assisted Living here in Rome.

NWGA CIL will be represented at the hand-cycling event in downtown Rome this Saturday, April 25th. Come by and see these amazing athletes, and stop in to say hi!

That’s a wrap for this week’s issue of The Bigger Picture! Join us again next week to see what else is happening in the world of independent living and NWGA CIL!


3 thoughts on “The Bigger Picture, Issue 5

  1. Great article about exercise. One stress management tip I have learned is to “inhabit my time”, just as one learns to inhabit one’s space. As someone who is blind, I know some tasks take me longer than most people, but I don’t rush stem and stress myself as much as I used to. I plan ahead to allow for the extra time needed. What health tips would you like to share?

  2. Pingback: The Bigger Picture, Issue 11 | NWGA Center for Independent Living

  3. Pingback: The Bigger Picture, Issue 12 | NWGA Center for Independent Living

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