ADVICE FOR YOUR BUCKET LIST

Do you know what a bucket list is? Most people think it is a list of things you want to do before you die. A typical guess is people want to visit a particular place before dying. Based on an unscientific poll about bucket lists, that is not a bad guess. Travel appears to be a frequent bucket list ambition.  Anne is an American who is proud her ancestors lived for centuries on the group of small islands in the English Channel between the southern coast of England and mainland Europe.

REDUCE STRESS, INCREASE ENJOYMENT FOR A HAPPY 2018

Family caregivers provide practical assistance and enhance the quality of life for frail seniors who might otherwise require placement in a long-term-care facility. Typically, caregivers are spouses or adult children, many of whom are seniors themselves. Their role involves physical, psychological, emotional and financial demands. It can be a heavy load.  If you are a caregiver, consider the following strategies for not only surviving but thriving in the year ahead.

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DISCOVER A LOVE OF LIFELONG LEARNING

Curiosity, exploring interests and engagement are a few crucial ingredients to healthy and happy longevity. Enrolling in a class just for the love of learning is a great way to do this. The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at the University of Kentucky offers educational and enrichment courses, forums, shared interest groups, trips and more for adults age 50 years and older. Membership for the full year is $25; summer programs are at a prorated fee.

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As recent visitors to Keukenhof, my wife and I found the “Historical Garden” a botanical treasure. Here the delicate, beautiful multicolored tulips share the story of the development of 400 years of tulip growth and cultivation in the Netherlands. We learned about the origin of the tulip and found a reproduction of the Clusius garden, planted with tulip varieties that have been cultivated for four centuries. It was thanks to Carolus Clusius that the tulip became such an icon of the Netherlands. Any botanist or flower lover should include the Keukenhof Gardens on their bucket list.

Perhaps one of the most special gardens on earth is in Amsterdam in the Netherlands. Keukenhof Gardens is the international independent showcase for the Dutch floricultural sector, with a special emphasis on flower bulbs. Keukenhof is considered the royal supplier of flowers. It has almost 100 exhibitors who give their very best range of flower-ing bulbs for display in the park. With these bulbs, the garden designer creates a special design for each exhibitor. In the space of eight weeks, Keukenhof showcases what the Dutch floricultural market has to offer. The focus in the park is on the 7 million spring- flowering bulbs, which is a chance for the participating companies to display their living catalogue. In more than 20 flower shows, 500 growers present an enormous variety of cut flowers and potted plants.


The history of Keukenhof goes back to the 15th century. The name means “kitchen garden.” Countess Jacqueline of Bavaria, Jacoba van Beieren (1401-1436) gathered fruit and vegetables from the woods and dunes for the kitchen at Teylingen Castle. Keu- kenhof Castle was built in 1641, and the estate grew to include over 200 hectares. In 1949, a group of 20 flower-bulb exporters came up with a plan to use the estate for a permanent exhibition of spring- flowering bulbs. That signaled the birth of Keukenhof Gardens Park. The park opened its gates to the public in 1950 and was an instant success, with 236,000 visitors in the first year. During the past 66 years, Keukenhof has become a world-famous attraction.

THE FLORAL BEAUTY OF KEUKENHOF GARDENS

 In 2016, the 67th edition of Keukenhof took place with “The Golden Age” as its theme.


The variety of gardens featured at Keukenhof make it a park to enjoy. The inspirational gardens provide a link to present-day floral trends. Visitors will discover a tasteful garden with bulb flowers in lovely shades of pink and red varieties of tulips devoted to romance and love.


The “sensory garden” is a new inspirational garden designed by the most famous of Dutch gardeners, Rob Verlinden. In the sensory garden, feeling, smell and sight are the points of focus.


Among the most unique of the gardens is the Delfts Blauw garden. Midway through the 17th century, the potters in Delft managed to copy the Chinese blue-white porcelain earthenware. Delft Blue became extremely popular. To this day, the blue-white combination is used widely, and in this garden there is a wonderful assortment of blue and white flowers.  

DR. THOMAS W. MILLER, PH.D, ABPP

Thomas W. Miller, Ph.D., ABPP, is a professor emeritus and senior research scientist, Center for Health, Intervention and Prevention, University of Connecticut; retired service chief from the VA Medical Center; and tenured professor in the Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, University of Kentucky.

more articles by dr thomas W. Miller