Saturday, February 28, 2009

Inspirational Sunday

Bill Witcher, co-founder of Computer School for Seniors will be sharing words of encouragement, inspiration and hope with you each Sunday.

Around Valentines Day I received an inspirtional email from My Daily Insights ( that I thought was very appropriate for our computer savvy students and I would like to share a portion of that email with you. It was based on an interesting concept. What if LOVE was a software program that you could install in your Heart? What would you have to do to get this very valuable program installed? Obviously, the first thing would be to call Tech Support and ask for help.


Tech Support:
Hello, how may I help you?
Customer: Well, after much thought, I've decided to install LOVE. Will you guide me though the process?
Tech Support: Yes. I would love to. Are you ready to proceed?
Customer: Well, I'm not very technical, but I think I'm ready. What do I do first?
Tech Support: The first step is to open your Heart. Have you located your Heart?
Customer: Yes, but there are several other programs running now. Is it okay to install LOVE while they are running?
Tech Support: What other programs are running?
Customer: Let's see, I have Past Hurt, Low Self-Esteem, Grudge, and Resentment running right now.
Tech Support: No problem, LOVE will gradually erase Past Hurt from your current operating system. It may remain in your permanent memory but it will no longer disrupt other programs. LOVE will eventually override Low Self-Esteem with a module of its own called High Self-Esteem. However, you have to completely turn off Grudge and Resentment. Those programs prevent LOVE from being properly installed. Can you turn those off?
Customer: I don't know how to turn them off. Can you tell me how?
Tech Support: With pleasure. Go to your start menu and turn on Forgiveness. Do this as many times as necessary until Grudge and Resentment have been completely erased.
Customer: Okay, done! Wow, LOVE has started installing itself. Is that normal?
Tech Support: Yes, but remember that you have only the base program. You need to begin sharing and connecting to other Hearts in order to get the upgrades.
Customer: Got it. Hey! My heart is filling up with new files. Smile is playing on my monitor and Peace and Contentment are copying themselves all over My Heart. Thank you for all your help.


This weeks message is a simple one. Install LOVE in your heart and start sharing it with everyone you meet. Have a blessed week. - Bill

Bill Witcher is co-founder of Computer School for Seniors (

Friday, February 27, 2009

Saturday Star Spotlight

Our students are doing a lot of exciting things and we're looking forward to featuring their impresssive accomplishments every Saturday in our Star Spotlight.

Today, we are proud to shine our “Star Spotlight” on Norma Howard Lane, one of our computer savvy students who is also an avid traveler and photographer.

Norma Lane is approaching her 80th birthday and would be the first to tell you, “I've been into computers and photography longer than the Internet itself.”

Norma emailed Dave Berry, our faculty adviser for the Photography Studio at Computer School for Seniors, and told him, “By all means feel free to share the photos from my website on your Blog. I am proud of the photos I’ve been able to take over the years. I started hiking in the Canadian Rockies after undergoing knee and hip replacement surgery and as a result have become a much happier and healthier person.”


Norma highly recommends the Canadian Rockies as a vacation destination “especially if you are a photographer.”


Norma has taken beautiful photos at Banff National Park, Yoho National Park, Jasper National Park and Glacier National Park to name just a few. Dave said, “Norma is an excellent photographer. Her landscape photos are fabulous. She sure caught my attention. I now have the Canadian Rockies on my vacation wish list.”


If you can’t wait to see the Rockies in person, visit her website at and look at her breathtaking photos. Thank you Norma for sharing and God bless.

Internet Magic Fridays

Jane Booras is the Editor of numerous newsletters including our Campus Times. She will be sharing how you can find whatever you need - photos, clipart, information, maps, phone numbers - on the Internet.

So one evening you’re watching the classic movie channel and enjoying one of your favorite old black and white movies. “Who is that actor?” you say to your wife (or husband). “Oh, I know who that is, but I can't think of his/her name!” Sound familiar? So we play a guessing game. We rack our brains and throw out a few names. My husband is apt to say, “Oh, yeah! That’s ‘what’s his name’.”

So you wait for the credits to roll. Then one of two things happens. One, since there were no commercials, you have to head for the restroom as soon as you see “The End” come up on the screen. (Ever notice that the new movies don’t say “The End” anymore?) Or, two, the credits run alright, but they are so teeny tiny that you can’t read them – even if you get up and put your nose right up to the screen. Well, darn. How will you ever know who that actor was?

GOOGLE! Just go to your computer and Google the name of the movie. Say, “State Fair” made in 1945. Try it and identify the picture below.


Or, “Slattery’s Hurricane” made in 1949. Same thing. Google it.


Last week, my sister and I flew to Cancun, Mexico for a 5-day vacation on the Yucatan Peninsula. It was wonderful. One day on the way to a snorkeling adventure, the van driver stopped suddenly on a back road. There along the road in the underbrush were several raccoons, along with another animal that looked like a raccoon, but had a long tail like a monkey. The van driver told us what it was, but with his accent, we couldn’t quite get the name. Then my sister remembered that she often googles answers to crossword puzzles when she gets “stuck.”

When we got back to our hotel, we went to the business center where free Internet service is offered and googled “Mexican raccoon-like animal.” Google took us to this web site: Click on the link and see the results for yourself.


Now mind you, my sister only googles answers after she has exhausted all other options – her brain and her precious crossword dictionary. But when things “niggle” at you for just so long, you have to know! That’s when you Google.

I wonder what ever happened to Encyclopedias. I suppose they are on the Internet now. Let’s google it and see what happens!

Jane Booras is Editor of the Campus Times Newsletter for Computer School for Seniors (

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Computer Tips Wednesday

Mimi Witcher, College Instructor, Teacher of the Year and co-founder of Computer School for Seniors will be sharing her user friendly computer tips on Wednesdays.

Jazzing things up

As I was putting this tip together on changing your cursor, I realized I needed to check out how Vista does it. I went into my Husband’s office changed his cursor into a blue dragon, wrote down the instructions, and the phone rang. It was actually my daughter, Holly, our blog master with a question about Computer Savvy Seniors. I forgot about the blue dragon, and went on about my business.

A little bit later I heard a voice saying, “Mimi, my cursor has turned into a blue dragon.” I could hear the smile in his voice, so I knew another senior moment had come and gone with no serious consequences!

Anyhoo, here’s another tip on how you can jazz up your computing:

#1. Left-click on the Start Button and choose Control Panel from the menu that pops up (these instructions are for XP-- Vista is below this section):


#2. This will open up a large dialog box with lots of choices. Find the one called Mouse (they are in alphabetical order) and double-click on it.


#3. Another dialog box will appear. Click the Pointers tab and then click on the Browse button:


#4. A long list of options appear in the next dialog box that opens. Double- click on the cursor you want. You will then be able to see the pointer in the Preview box (see example above) after you have made your choice. Try several of them.

#5. There are a lot of pointers available, some of them animated. Here are a few examples:


Note: You left-click with the new cursor just like with the arrow pointer. The dragon’s tail is the point of that one. When you are ready to go back to your regular pointer just repeat Steps 1, 2 and 3. There is a large pointer there if you would like one you can see better.

For Vista (Classic View):

Left-click the round Microsoft Office Button in the very bottom left corner of the screen. Choose Settings from the menu that appears. Another menu will appear where you choose Control Panel. The rest is the same as Step 2 and 3 above.



Monday, February 23, 2009

Tuesday's Treasures-Sayulita

On Tuesday's we are going to take a nostalgic trip down memory lane with some "remember when" photos and stories submitted by our students.

"Magical Sayulita"

This charming collage was created in Photoshop Elements by one of my talented students, Jack Murphy. He visits Sayulita, Nayarit, Mexico often and takes lots of pictures--what a great combination!

He grew up in the 50's in Southern California during a time when Californians were lucky…they had the weather, the immense growth, and a melting pot of people that made everything interesting.

Jack met Jeanette, his wife, at Macy's department store in the 60's and they were fortunate to be able to travel all over the United States and Europe due to his job and just curiosity.

Back in 1999 they found Sayulita, Nayarit, Mexico and because of its beauty, weather, natural art and simpatico people they decided to purchase something they never planned on, a second home.

Jack says, “All of our family and friends who have visited Sayulita love it. Sayulita is truly magical!”

Thanks to Jack for sharing this lovely spot with us in such a unique way!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Saturday Star Spotlight-Paul Yowell

Our students are doing a lot of exciting things and we're looking forward to featuring their impresssive accomplishments every Saturday in our Star Spotlight.

Our Saturday Star Spotlight shines on an 83 year old student from Longview, TX, Paul Yowell, who was very surprised to find himself in the Media Spotlight last April right after he enrolled in Computer School for Seniors.

Paul read about Computer School for Seniors early on Sunday morning, April 13th in the Dallas Morning News. He enrolled and was so happy, he fired off a letter to the paper which they published.


He thanked them for running the article and told them that “he had enrolled online and by 8:30 AM he was already studying a Beginners Lesson.” He said, “At 82, I have become 15% computer geek!”

Mechelle Jordan, news reporter for CBS TV 19 in Longview, TX read Paul’s letter and called him to set up a TV interview.

It wasn’t long before a TV Crew was shining their bright lights on Paul in his living room as reporter Mechelle Jordan asked him questions about being a “15% computer geek!”


Mechelle introduced her TV interview by saying, “Learning Computer Tricks Just Got Easier For Seniors. That’s Senior Citizens.” She went on to say, “A new virtual campus is up and running…just for them. Computers have been greek for many older adults. But now, navigating around them can be as simple as pie. 82 year-old Paul Yowell is enjoying every click of his mouse.”

With the TV camera rolling and the bright lights shining, Paul told his new TV fans that, “I now write letters so much better and I enjoy doing it.” He went on to say how he was overcoming his fear of that “17 inch screen and having fun doing it.”

Just last week, Bill Witcher received the following email from Paul...

“I continue to feel so blessed to have discovered your senior school for the capture and control of computers by intimidated seniors. Now at 83, without the help of
my computer, life would certainly be a boring situation. I finally had to give up golf and fishing. But I still have my computer to brighten everyday. Best wishes to you both.”

God Bless, Paul Yowell

Bill Witcher is co-founder of Computer School for Seniors (

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Photo Tips Tuesday-Naturescape

Dave Berry, Director of the Photography Department at Computer School for Seniors will be sharing his insightful Photo Tips with you on Tuesdays.

Simply Spectacular !!!!!!!!!

Just when you think you have seen it all in photography you realize there are pictures being taken by some very talented photographers.....I couldn't help but to share my joy with all of you.....

 has posted it's 2008 images of the year....and they are winners!!!!! 

There are some amazingly spectacular images in this collection that make you want to simply grab your camera and run out the door....Beautiful, Simply Beautiful !!!! 

What I enjoyed the most was photographers offering shooting information and comments under each image along with a short bio about the photograher....Hope you have found these photo's as inspirational as I have....Until next week -  thanks for dropping by....Meanwhile go out and HAVE FUN WITH YOUR CAMERA !!!!!!!!!!!


Sunday, February 15, 2009

Mac Monday

Holly Oelkers, Blog Editor and Enthusiastic Mac Convert will be sharing Mac news, tips and tutorials on Mondays.

Today all I am going to do is show you how to click on links and then get back! Do you want to learn more about your mac and what it can do? Click on the link below (notice it is a different color) and remember - when you click - you will go to a new screen.  Click back on your browser (the arrow pointing to your left at the top left of your screen).


A new window popped up. Did you make your way back to us? Good! Click on the next one....

Do you know more today about your Mac than you did yesterday? Good! 

Do you have a question? Good! 

Ask Ask Ask :) 


Friday, February 13, 2009

Scrapbooking Saturday-Senior Bowling

Scrapbooking is a way to capture special events in a memorable way. I have a Scrapbook for each baby at the hospital (that would be three), each Summer Vacation and then big books for every day in between. We love being able to go back and look at each occasion and special event!

Well Computer School for Seniors just had a special event last Thursday that deserves to go in our scrapbook. We announced our First Computer Savvy Senior Award Recepient - Mary Lou Thomas of Kansas City, MO.

 Here's the story about Mary Lou that we ran in our Campus Times Newsletter and that I am going to put in my Computer Savvy Senior Blog scrapbook.

Congratulations Mary Lou Thomas, Kansas City, MO - Our Computer Savvy Senior*

The photo is of Mary Lou bowling on her 80th birthday with her kids and grand kids. "They're the ones who talked me into becoming more computer savvy," says Mary Lou.

"I have a granddaughter who lives in Singapore and a grandson who lives in Denver and I don't get to see them that often. But we are now email buddies. I even have my own page on Facebook."

Her kids gave her a computer and every time a family member visited they would show her all the great things she could do with her computer. "I didn't really get comfortable until I started fooling around with it by myself, sometimes late at night. Computer School for Seniors is perfect for me. I learned so much just leisurely touring around the campus and it's fun," said Mary Lou. "I love the Government Center. I'm a political junkie."

*For being selected to be our Computer Savvy Senior, Mary Lou Thomas will be receiving a framed certificate and a "I'm a Computer Savvy Senior" tee shirt. If you would like to be one of our Computer Savvy Seniors, email your computer story to our Campus Times Editor,

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Lifelong Learning Thursday-First Post

The Secret for Making the Most of Your After-50 Years.

…a Health Club for Our Minds, Bodies and Spirits!


Welcome! My name is Nancy Merz Nordstrom and this blog is all about the concept, benefits and opportunities of incorporating lifelong learning into our After-50 years. Once you open that door, you never know where it might lead. For instance, I became a new author for the first time at age 61, thanks to my passion for later-life learning.

So, over the coming months, not only will you discover the value of lifelong learning for those of us of a “certain age,” you will also get a behind-the-scenes peek at how my excitement for this subject came to fruition with the writing of Learning Later, Living Greater: The Secret for Making the Most of Your-After 50 Years.

My goal in writing the book was to spread the word about this incredibly value tool in our quest for life satisfaction. Making lifelong learning part of our later years enriches and enhances our lives. It keeps us connected, tuned in and productive, even after we are no longer working full-time.


In future blogs, we will discuss lifelong learning, and its connection with the health of our Minds, our Bodies and our Spirits. We will also look at four of the most popular ways to incorporate lifelong learning into our later years - in the classroom – on the Internet – through educational travel – and, by engaging in meaningful community service. We’ll look at future initiatives in this field as well, and also hear what lifelong learners have to say.

So, hang on! It’s going to be an exciting ride! Before you know it, you’ll be thinking of lifelong learning “After 50” as a kind of health club - a way to invigorate…



For more information on Learning Later, Living Greater visit
You can purchase Learning Later, Living Greater at

Till Next Time…

Being involved in lifelong learning can open doors you never knew existed.
It can change your life and take it in a completely new direction if you so desire.

Nancy Nordstrom is Director of the Lifelong Learning Department at Computer School for Seniors (

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Computer Tips Wednesdays-Change Your Desktop

Mimi Witcher, tech savvy College Instructor, Teacher of the Year and co-founder of Computer School for Seniors will be sharing her user friendly computer tips on Wednesdays.

A Change of Scenery
Feel like a change? Don’t rearrange your furniture; change your computer’s desktop picture! It is fun and easy and will give you a lift to see a new look on your computer’s face!

1. If you are using Windows XP, right-click on an area of the Desktop of your computer that does not have an icon on it. A menu will appear. Choose Properties. This will open the Display Properties dialog box.


2. You can use any of the styles provided by Windows, or you can click the Browse button and add your own picture to your Desktop. When you tire of the image, just repeat this process and add a new one!

3. If you are using Vista, right-click on the Desktop and choose Personalize. When the dialog box appears click on Desktop Background. Another dialog box will come into view showing you “Windows Wallpapers” where you can choose an image. Or click the Browse button and go and get your own picture from a folder on your computer.

Put a picture of someone in your family there and they’ll get a kick out of seeing it!

Mimi Witcher is co-founder of Computer School for Seniors (

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Mac Monday - but really - how to comment on Blogspot

Greetings my friends! My name is Holly and I am the Computer Savvy Seniors Blog Creator and the Mac Director at Computer School For Seniors .  Remember - you can click on text that has a different color and it is a link that will take you to a different site - in this case - if you click on the words Computer School For Seniors above (see how the two Computer School For Seniors text is different? One is a link) - anyway - if you click on the words Computer School For Seniors - it will take you to the cs4seniors campus. 

Well - I already got off track!!!!!!! 

You will learn that about me - I tend to ramble! 

What I wanted to do today for this Mac Monday is not really a Mac lesson at all. It is a lesson on how to leave a comment on blogger. Now - why would you want to leave a comment? Well - there are a lot of reasons - all of them good ones. You can ask a question, get in touch with a faculty member, just say good job, or even that you don't agree. We welcome all comments and try to respond to them all. I will warn you that unkind comments can be deleted although I know that there is no reason for that - you guys are so great. 

Sigh - I have digressed again......

On to the lesson. 

At the bottom of each post in Blogger - you will see our sign off and posting information. If you click on 2 Comments (this number will change depending on how many comments are there) - it will show you the comments and give you an opportunity to comment. 


You can enter your thoughts and questions in the box under Post A Comment 

Now click Select Profile 


If you have a Wordpress or Typepad account - go ahead and enter your information. If you don't - let's get you signed up with a Google Account. It is quick and easy and will allow you to comment and move easily throughout the blogspot world.


At some point during this process, you will probably be asked to enter Word Verification. This is to prevent spamming and is no big deal. Simply enter the letters that have been provided. If you mess up - they will give you new letters.

If you have a Google Account - enter your information and comment away. If you do not - simple click on the bottom blue line - Create an account


Enter your information, pick a password - and WOW - you can leave a comment!!!! Do you see below how I left my comment and used my user name - Holly :)


Holly Oelkers is Director of The Mac Place at Computer School for Seniors (

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Scrapbooking Saturday

Because our blog is just getting started - I thought that I would start off our first Scrapbooking Saturday post with an amazing quote!!!! 

I want to encourage "baby boomers" and senior citizens to use digital storytelling to preserve their memories and life stories for future generations. Here is the mission: using today's technology to tell yesterday's stories to tomorrow's generations. The current popularity of scrapbooking and genealogy all indicate that there is an interest to preserve these memories. But those who study genealogy know that we can find the dates and facts about a life, but stories that are not preserved are lost forever. Everyone has a story to tell. Digital storytelling is one way to preserve and share our family legacies. Perhaps I can also work into the process a "retirement transition" focus, using digital stories as a way of finding a new purpose in retirement after a very busy working life. Learning to share digital stories could become a powerful transition activity. And in the process, new retirees could learn technology skills that they might have missed in their professional careers.Here is also an opportunity for schools, as well, to bring this digital storytelling process to their communities, to match young people who have the technology skills with older people who have the stories to be preserved. Then, we can truly become a community of lifelong learners who share our knowledge and wisdom with each other.

(Bloggy tip - the name above is highlighted because it is "linked". You can click on it and it will take you to site that has been referenced. You will see a lot of this as you continue checking in with us at our blog!)

Holly Oelkers is Director of The Mac Place at Computer School for Seniors (

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


Welcome to Computer Savvy Seniors 

We are the blogging friends from Computer School For Seniors and we are so excited to get our blog going!!!!! 

Check back as we add new things every day.