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Low vision newsletter – August 2020


August 2020

The Hull Foundation’s

Low Vision Monthly News


Editor:  Julie Wright


Our Mission Statement:

The mission of the Oral Hull Foundation for the Blind is to provide programs, facilities and services including social, educational and recreational activities for people who are blind and visually impaired.

“Keeping Hope & Dreams Alive!”

*If you would prefer to receive this newsletter by email, or to unsubscribe, please call the Hull Foundation at 503.668.6195 or send an email to:

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The Harvest is Here!

Hello Friends,

     The weather is beautiful! Vegetables are starting to emerge from the garden – peas, green beans, kale, cucumbers, tomatoes, and zucchini. So much zucchini!  If you were to walk by a honeybee hive today, you would smell the deliciously sweet aroma of the warm honey stored in the bee’s hexagonal shaped beeswax, their version of Tupperware. If you were to pass your hands under the entrance of the hive at night, you would feel a large hanging beard of bees as thousands of them hang on each other to cool off in the evening’s break from heat. Now that the last nectar flow of blackberry blossoms has passed, your local beekeepers are surely busy harvesting this season’s honey. Want some?

     Going to stores that sell local produce and honey is a fine way to enjoy the bounty this season offers.  Yes, challenges getting it arise with the quarantine, but there are always ways.  You have the power to learn about your local resources. If you haven’t already, take the time to brainstorm some ideas on where and how you can get some of this summer’s bounty, think of where you want to go or what you want to get and work backwards to identify who you need to contact to make it happen.  It may take more than one connection, but it is possible.

     Along with the veggies comes the heat.  It has been hot and the quarantine continues.  How are you holding up?  Are you finding ways to stay entertained, engaged, and involved in the world around you?  Have you sat outside in the shade with your feet in a bucket of cool water and an iced tea in your hand as you listen to the sounds around you or the voice of a good book?  Have you called some friends and laughed as you’ve shared each other’s stories or the good jokes found in the final pages of this newsletter?  Have you discovered a way to lighten your spirits even with the hardships of sight loss and the heaviness of quarantines? 

     We, the staff at the Hull Foundation, hope you have been doing all of the above.  We also understand that it can be difficult to find ways to joyfully pass the time.  We want to help!

     If you need ideas, keep reading this newsletter because the Hull Foundation, as always, is dedicated to create ways to offer social and educational opportunities to those new or seasoned with vision loss.  And, although we have had to cancel our summer retreats and seminars, with great regret for the rest of the year, we are still here for you. 

     Please, consider joining us for some of our virtual events.  These events are free and the only barrier to joining them is the fear or belief that technology is not your thing.  If this sounds like you, we would like to help you overcome that barrier.  It begins with a phone call and a conversation with us.  So, after you have read this newsletter and found some things you would like to participate in, give us a call and we’ll help you find a way.  We are in this together!

For our upcoming educational meetings, review the following…

  1. To learn tips and resources in recurring “Living with Sight Loss” meetings, go to p. 16
  2. To learn where to find more publications for those with sight loss or blindness, go to p. 18
  3. To learn about braille classes, go to p.19

For our social events, review the following…

  1.  To join our activity “Walk Across America”, go to p. 7
  2. To join our “Hull Foundation presents…”, go to p. 10
  3. To join our Book Club, go to p. 11

We hope to have you at one or many of our events.  You are always welcome!

 (503) 668-6195

     Yours Truly,

           The staff at the Hull Foundation

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Think about this…

Posed Question:  Think about and explore appropriate ways to say “Hello” to people since social distancing keeps us from shaking hands.  As someone with sight loss or blindness, greetings can be challenging. What alternative ways can you think of that gives us a sense of connection?  Please let us know your thoughts.  We will share everyone’s ideas in our next newsletter.

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Walking Across America

     Our activity group has made it all the way to Cape Cod in a grand adventure and we aren’t done yet!  We went across the USA taking the northern route and we are now coming back on the southern route.  This group has grown from 5 to 20 members and has travelled over 4,000 virtual miles together.  If you haven’t joined us yet, please consider doing so.  It is a great way to stay motivated to move and you’ll enjoy some great stories as we travel. 

     The Hull Foundation continues to welcome sponsors for our walk.  In fact, current sponsors have raised $3,328!  This means a great deal to us!  As a non-profit during COVID-19, we have had greater than normal financial challenges.  We are so grateful to those who have sponsored and supported our walking group!  Not only are they helping us financially so we can continue providing services, but they are supporting our all-important friends with low vision and blindness who have decided to keep or begin an active lifestyle. 

     We want you to choose an active lifestyle, too.  Please join our walk and help us get back home to the west coast.  Do you want to know how to join us?  Read the next section.  We look forward to having you on our adventure!

How to Give us Miles:

 Any kind of exercise or hobby time works!  20 minutes of activity equals 1 mile. Just call the office between 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm and leave a message with the amount of time you clocked or the miles you walked.  We do the rest.

                Office Phone Number: 503-668-6195

     A huge “Thank You!” goes to our sponsors! They are Mr. & Mrs. Glen Willumson, Sherry Whitmore, Sharon Kassakian, Sharon Elder, Clark Hofmann, Anonymous, the Wright family, Patrick Whitmore, Joann Glass, Cynthia O’Daniel, and Susan Vernon.  We truly appreciate your support!

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 “Hull Foundation Presents….”  Meet Friends during our online/over-the-phone meetings.

First Wednesdays

When:  Wed., Aug. 5and Sept. 2

Where:  Zoom Meeting ID: 991 2762 5481

      Phone Number: (253) 215-8782 US (Tacoma)

 Or (669)900-6833 (San Jose)

Time:  1:00 p.m.

Third Wednesdays

When:  Wed., Aug. 19 and Sept. 16

Where:  Zoom Meeting ID: 931 9058 2632

      Phone Number: (253) 215-8782 US (Tacoma)

 Or (669)900-6833 (San Jose)

Time:  10:00 a.m.

     If you have a topic you would like to present, let us know!

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Book Club

We are just starting a Book Club on the first and third Thursday of the month from 10:00 A.M. – 11:30 A.M.  It is very important to RSVP at least 1 day before the event.  (503) 668-6195

When:  Thurs., Aug. 6 and Aug. 20

Where:  Zoom Meeting ID: 861 2638 9522

      Phone Number: (253) 215-8782 US (Tacoma)

 Or (346) 248-7799 (Houston)

Time:  10:00 a.m.

Our first virtual book club gathering will be August 6, at 10:00 A.M.  It will be an introduction on how and where to get audio or braille books. It will be easier if you already have the Zoom app downloaded onto your smartphone or computer.  Does this sound like a different language?  It’s okay, give us a call before that day and we can help you get started.  (503) 668-6195

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This Month’s Book suggestions   

The following book title starts with a DBC number.  This is a catalog number given when using the free Talking Book service through the National Library Service.  Don’t have Talking Books yet or need to sign up for BARD, their online book library?  Call them at 1-888-657-7323

      This book list was provided by our attendees of a Zoom meeting that was devoted to the topic of reading. Did you have a great read recently?  Share it with us and we’ll put it in the newsletter.

  • by Pete Davies. U.S. History.  1n 1919, a military convoy of 81 vehicles set out to travel the Lincoln Highway from Washington D.C. to San Francisco. The venture spurred massive road building and the creation of the Interstate Highway System.
  • Mary Stewart.  This is the first of 4 books. A fairy-tale quality permeates this story of Merlin, the 5th-century wizard-prince who guided King Arthur to his throne.
  • DB 06788 “The Hollow Hills” by Mary Stewart.  2nd of 4 books about King Arthur.
  • DB 13831 “The Last Enchantment” by Mary Stewart.  3rd of 4 books about King Arthur.
  • DB 20205 “The Wicked Day” by Mary Stewart.  4th of 4 books about King Arthur.
  • DB 11619 “When You Can’t Believe Your Eyes: vision loss and personal recovery” by Hannah Fairbairn.  With a special emphasis on the challenges faced by seniors with failing vision, this highly practical how-to focuses on practical, social, and personal recovery for adults who are losing their sight.

Want more?  Join our Book Club!

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 “Living with Sight Loss”: Tips and resources for those new to vision loss

     The Vision Loss Instructors at the Hull Foundation have been working hard to bring information from our previous 3-day seminars to your home.  We are planning to host them on the first and third Tuesdays of each month from 10:00 A.M. to 11:30 A.M.  They are free and designed to have a 1-hour presentation followed by 30 minutes of discussion on various topics.  We will send helpful supplies which complement the discussion to those who sign up early. 

     Don’t shy away due to technology! You can just use your touch phone.  Or, if you have access to other technology, we will help you become comfortable joining these meetings with “practice runs” before the meeting date.

     It all begins with a phone call to us!


     Our first “Living with Sight Loss” class will be held on Tuesday, August 18th at 10:00 A.M. with the topic, “Notetaking with Sight Loss”.  If you don’t already have an efficient notetaking system, this class is a “Must”! We will discuss various ways to keep notes that may work for you, calendars, check writing, labeling, and so much more.  Please call us as soon as possible to receive the supplies for this class.

     Our second “Living with Sight Loss” class will be held on Tuesday, Sept. 1st at 10:00 A.M. with the topic, “COVID-19 Best Practices”.  We will discuss cleaning tips to stay healthy while social distancing, tips on staying connected, obtaining supplies, games to play over the phone, getting around and more.

     Future topics include Magnification, Safety in Your Home, Home Orientation, Connecting with Others, Communications and Creating Your Sight Statement, Tools for Walking Safely, The Power of the Mobility Cane, Maintaining Hobbies, Games, Getting Ready for the Holidays, and Access to Braille.

     Keep reading our newsletters for more information. Feel free to share them with others!

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Publications for those with Sight Loss or Blindness

These newsletters are available through consumer groups of the blind.  Most are available in digital cartridge, large print, podcasts, email, braille and other versions. 

  1. “The Stylus” published by the American Council of the Blind of Oregon.  Find it at

or call them at (503) 871-6175 or email at

  • “The Monitor” published by the National Federation of the Blind.  Find it at

or call them at (410) 659-9314 ext. 2344

  • “The Braille Forum” published by the American Council of the Blind.  Find it at

or call them at (518) 906-1820

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Braille Lessons

      The Hull Foundation offers braille lessons.  If you want to be part of a beginner’s class, please let us know! We have an intermediate group that meets virtually on the 2nd and 4th Thursdays of the month from 10:00 A.M. to 11:30 A.M.  There is room to join that one, too!

      Call us at (503) 668-6195

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Jokes to Keep Us Laughing!

Here are some jokes to keep us laughing this month…

  1. Q: What’s a pirate’s favorite letter?

A: You think it’s R, but it be the C.

  • I can’t take my dog to the park because the ducks keep trying to bite him. 

That’s what I get for buying a pure “bread” dog!

  • Q: If you ever get cold, stand in a corner of a room for a while.  Why?

A: They are usually 90 degrees.

  • Q: What’s the difference between a poorly-dressed man on a unicycle and a well-dressed man on a bicycle?
The end. Thanks for Reading! 

A: Attire

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