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Sight Loss Monthly June 2022

June 2022

The Hull Foundation’s

Sight Loss  Monthly News

Picture is of the yard sign at the entrance of our 23-acre park and learning center.  It says “Oral Hull Park. Serving people with blindness and low vision since 1962.”  Very tall, dark green fir trees and blue sky are in the background. Standing on each side of the two 7-foot-tall posts are two beautiful, smiling volunteer retreat staff with bright green STAFF t-shirts, looking at you!

Welcome Summer!


Celebrating 60 Years! 1962-2022 “The publishing of this newsletter is a service of The Hull Foundation and Learning Center Inc. It is not an endorsement of any of its contents.  All products, items and other information may be used at the sole discretion of the reader.”  
Editors, Hull Foundation Staff


Mission Statement …p. 3

A New Perspective on Recovery …p. 4

Living Lively with Sight & Hearing Loss…p. 7

Tech Tip: Get Rid of Spam & Robo Calls …p. 9
In the Kitchen with Kat – Silicone to the Rescue! …p. 15

Reading in the Dark Book Club …p. 18

Hull Foundation Zoom Meetings …p. 20

June Zoom Schedule…p. 21
Living with Sight Loss Introduction Seminar …p. 33

More Upcoming Events…p. 34
Jokes to Keep Us Laughing …p. 37
Contact Us…p. 38

Our Mission Statement:

The mission of the Hull Foundation and Learning Center is to provide programs, facilities and services including social, educational, and recreational activities for people with blindness and sight loss.

*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:

A New Perspective on Recovery and Energy by Marja Byers, Sight Loss Instructor

I hadn’t really given much thought to how much recovery, whether the recovery is from an injury, surgery or from emotional trauma, affects our precious energy, until I recently had two eye surgeries, two weeks apart. I’ve had this surgery before, but it has been three years since my last surgery, therefore, I am three years older than I was and am now in my mid-sixties. I did not anticipate how much more this surgery would affect me just a few years later! I had planned on staying with my brother and his family so I could take it easy and focus on recovery, for 10 days. It turned into three and a half weeks.

What I now know. As we age, recovery is slower and takes a lot of energy, I gave myself permission to go to bed when I was tired, some nights that meant 6:30-7:30, I was never up much past 8:30 and slept through most nights. I listened to a lot of books on BARD, using my one eye that was not surgical just took so much energy and made both eyes uncomfortable. Sometimes that mid-afternoon nap is a very necessary thing!

The other surprising effect was how much my appetite increased, I am not a very regular eater and often skip meals. I was reminded that rest and adequate nutrition are very important to the healing process. When I found out that I had to have the same surgery over again, two weeks after my first, I was very glad that I had been kind to myself. The surgery took more time than was expected, more anesthetic agents were used, so I felt foggier than I had with the first. Processing anesthetics seems to take longer and affect us more as we age.

 After the prolonged “visit” with my brother, I found out the benefit of having great support and getting rest as I went through this challenge. At my second one-week post-op visit the Casey Eye resident and my surgeon commented on how impressed they were with the growth of the new, healthy tissue in just a week. I honestly believe that it speaks to the care my family helped provide.

 Please, also remember that mental and emotional trauma are still trauma, don’t be deceived by the fact that you may not have any physical signs of trauma, it is still trauma.  Please, take care of yourselves, you matter!

Living Lively with Sight and Hearing Loss

By: J. Espinal, Sight Loss Instructor

Living with any form of sight loss can be quite the challenge and definitely an adventure but throw hearing loss into the mix and it makes life even more interesting. Fear not! As a member of both the sight loss and hearing loss club, I can tell, from personal experience, that although it can be scary, it’s also a series of hills and valleys worth conquering to independence.

The most important tool to have in your bag, to conquer the seemingly unconquerable, is having the right kind of hearing support. This usually comes in the form of hearing aids or other support devices. If you suspect that you are experiencing hearing loss, getting a hearing test is first priority. Most people go through their family doctor to get a referral to an audiologist. This is preferable as your doctor will refer you to someone that works with your insurance.

However, if you feel you need a quick test to ease your mind there are centers for hearing loss that offer hearing tests at low to no cost. You are not obligated to purchase their line of products. Simply state that you want a hearing test. I am not a medical professional, so consulting with your own nearest and trustworthy medical professional is ideal. Living with sight and hearing loss can be quite the challenge. Approaching life with an open mind, humor and positivity will go a long way and that is advice any doctor would endorse.

 TECH TIP: SPAM AND ROBO CALLS – GET RID OF THEM!  By, Marty Sobo – Sight Loss Instructor 

We know how much everyone hates Robo and Spam calls. Below are some tips and tricks to help combat all the Robo and Spam calls you’re getting.

Apple:  Caller ID and spam protection on your iPhone.

Go to “settings.”

Go to “phone.”

Scroll down to “silence unknown callers.” Turn this “on.”

Silence unknown callers will be off by default.  The only time a caller will get through is if the person calling is in your contacts. If the person calling is not in your contacts, it will go straight to voicemail. You may need to turn this off if you’re expecting a phone call from a doctor’s office or possibly a business. They usually have blocked phone numbers.

Android:  Caller ID and spam protection on your android phone.

Caller ID and spam protection is on by default. You can choose to turn it off.

If you want to turn it off, open the phone app.

Double tap on the “more options” button, then double tap on “settings.”

You then double tap on “Spam and Call Screen.”

You can then turn “on” or “off” the Spam and Call Screen option.

Note, an optional feature is to “filter” spam calls. you won’t get any missed call or voicemail notifications however the filtered calls will show in your call history and the voicemails will be in your voicemail in case something is filtered you didn’t expect.

You can mark a call as spam if the filters didn’t pick it up.

Open the phone, double tap “Recent”, and then double tap and hold on the call you want to mark as “spam.”

You then can choose the mark as spam choice.

Use caller ID & spam protection – Phone app Help,

Tip of the Month: New To Sight Loss?  What low-vision aids are available?

Low-vision aids and modified non-optical devices are very useful to those with some sight. Popular low vision aids include:

  • Telescopic glasses.
  • Lenses that filter light.
  • Magnifying glasses.
  • Hand magnifiers.
  • Closed-circuit television.
  • Reading prisms.

These devices are stronger than regular eyeglasses and can be handheld or stationary. Computer software is also available that can alter screen images or read typed text to make new technology and electronic information readily available.

Non-optical aids are also very helpful in daily activities. These aids can talk or come with enlarged print and Braille and have special features, like high contrast, that make them easier to see.

Some non-optical aids include:

  • Text-reading software: These computer programs enable users to understand the text on the screen through a speech synthesizer, Braille display or enhanced text.
  • Braille readers: These devices are typically connected to a computer, and they translate each line of text on the screen into Braille.
  • Check guides: This tool is used to help someone with low vision fill out a check. Like a template, it is placed over the check, and you can write in the blank spaces, filling out the check as you normally would.
  • High contrast clocks and watches: The numbers on the face of the clock or watch are distinctly set off from the background, making them easier to see.
  • Talking watches and clocks: A voice says the time out loud.
  • Large-print publications: The text in a publication uses a larger size, making it easier to read.
  • Clocks, phones, and watches with enlarged numbers: These devices have larger numbers to make reading them easier.
  • Labeling paint that swells as it dries: This paint puffs up when it dries, allowing you to run your finger over it and understand the label.
  • Need assistance finding these helpful aids? Please call our office at 503-668-6195 for more information.

IN THE KITCHEN WITH “KAT” – Sight Loss Instructor
Here are a few tips on items I like to use to make cleanup a breeze in my kitchen. Many of us with sight loss find cleaning up after dinner to be a daunting task. I use a lot of food-safe silicone to help with this task.

Here is a shortlist of the things that I enjoy using. Many of you may have used silicone products previously and found them to be very useful. First, I always use a cafeteria type tray because the raised sides prevent items from sliding off. I have contrasting and different colored cutting boards to help with my limited sight when cutting or chopping. You can find easy-to-clean silicone sheets that can be used as well but remember not to mix them with those you plan to cook with.  The silicone sheets are a favorite to use on my cookie sheets, regardless of what I am making. Some of them even come marked where you would place your cookies. Next there are silicone sheets that fit on the bottom of your oven to catch spills from pies or any pans that run over.  No more wondering if there’s a mess on your oven floor.  I also have a lot of silicone bakeware. If you don’t do a lot of baking, I suggest you buy just the pans that you use. Casserole dishes are available in silicone also, and they do not weigh anywhere near as much as a glass casseroles.  Again, silicone is a big help with cleanup. I use a silicone pie plate for baking pies, and you can find pie rings for the top of the pie so the crust around the edge does not burn while baking. No more having to make my own protective rings out of cutting tin foil into pieces.  Other excellent kitchen items from silicone include utensils. You can get spatulas, mixing spoons, and basting items that come in many contrasting colors and are easy to clean up.  For those of you who like their Air Fryer or Insta-Pot you can find liners made of silicone too. All products you’ve just read about can be found by going to:

By purchasing from “Smile Amazon” not only will you be able to find all your kitchen silicone, but if you sign up, and list Oral Hull Foundation as your favorite charity; we will benefit from your purchase. It does not cost you anything and it is a unique program that Amazon offers to nonprofits. This is another small way that you can help to support the Hull Foundation and Learning Center.  Have a happy and safe time in your kitchen

Great cooking!  “KAT”

Hull Foundation and Learning Center Book Club

When:  Tuesday June 7th and 21st, 2022 at 10:00am.

In May we read “Never Cry Wolf” by Farley Mowat DB21586

Never Cry Wolf is a 1963 memoir by Canadian author and environmentalist Farley Mowat. Known as one of the foremost early works on the field biology of wolf ecosystems, Mowat investigates the predator-prey relationships that take place between wolves and caribou in North America. Mowat relates his experience as a young man navigating, for the first time, the Canadian wilderness and crossing paths with Ottawan forest officials.

Our next books look to be very interesting.

“All Girl Filling Stations Last Reunion” by Fannie Flagg DB77825

“Einstein’s Dreams” by Alan Lightman DB36166

E.R. nurses: true stories from America’s greatest unsung heroes” by James Patterson and Matt Eversmann DB105256

“Vision Loss: Strategies for living with hope and independence” by Peggy R. Wolfe” DBC24679

We are always looking for new friends to join the book club. If the books we are reading don’t pique your interest, come to the next book club meeting, and share your favorite books.

Join us for a fun hour of discussion and comradery!  Come prepared with ideas for our next books!

Hull Foundation Presents Zoom Meetings

Our June virtual Zoom meetings have something for everyone and are full of interesting topics that can assist you in your everyday life. We are doing a series the next three months featuring a variety of Guide Dog organizations throughout the U.S., to better inform you of the available dogs…just in case you are interested. Bring a friend or spouse! Sighted or not!! If you would like to sign up to receive a weekly email with the Zoom schedule for the week and the links to the meetings, please email the office at or call us at 503-668-6195. If you are not an email user, then you can call us on Mondays to receive the call-in number and Meeting ID number for meetings you are interested in attending via phone.


May 31st Tuesday, 10-11am PST

Guide Dogs of the Desert.

Considering GDD as your first guide dog school or considering a different school? Then I invite you to join us as we learn what they can offer a perspective student.
(Class provided by the Hull Foundation and Hosted by ACB of Oregon)

June 2nd Thursday, 10-11am PDT

Dialogue with a Symptom: Understanding your body and habits with Deb Marinos.

Do you have a self-care habit that fails to happen or a new body ailment that you find frustrating? Come gain understanding why or what to do with a unique writing exercise called Dialogue with a symptom. Another mind body skill from the center of mind body medicine.

June 2nd Thursday, 1-2pm PDT

Sight Loss and Hearing Loss, a group Chat with Jael, Sight Loss Instructor. 

An opportunity to connect with other individuals who are hard of hearing as well as living with sight loss. Information and support are provided. Please invite your family and friends. (Class provided by the Hull Foundation and Hosted by ACB)

June 3rd Friday, 7-8pm PDT

First Friday with Friends and Family with Marja and Carrie.

Please join us as we focus on our loved ones who are taking their sight loss journey one step at time and with you by their side. Audio Description.


June 7th Tuesday, 10-11am PDT

Reading in the Dark Book Club with Monica – Hull Foundation Staff.

Come share with a group of diverse people what you are currently reading and find your next good read! 

June 8th Wednesday, 1-2pm PDT

How are you doing and how are you dealing Marja – Sight Loss Instructor

Going through sight loss has a huge learning curve, you’re not alone. Join Marja and the gang to chat about the ups and downs and ways around.

June 9th Thursday, 10-11am PDT

Shades of Grey: legal blindness with Deb Marinos – Sight Loss Instructor.

What is legal blindness?  Learn why folks with vision loss face animosity and bias from others or are able to hide their vision loss. We will attempt to settle the “am I blind enough?” question and learn it’s not about the level of vision loss. 

June 9th Thursday, 1-2pm PDT

Seek your own Autonomy with Jael and Michael – Sight Loss Instructors

Losing one’s sight can be difficult, especially when we feel like a lot of our autonomy has been diminished. Let’s talk about solutions and suggestions on how to regain your autonomy and open the way for confidence.


June 13th Monday, 7-8pm PDT

The Chat Cafe with Teresa and Carrie – Sight Loss Instructor

Pull up a chair; grab a mug; and sit by the fire. Chat about anything and everything. (Sponsored by the Hull Foundation and ACB of Oregon)

June 14th Tuesday, 10-11am PDT

Leader Dogs with Leslie Hoskins and Jael – Sight Loss Instructors

Is Leader Dogs the right school for you? They are one of the schools that match a person with a hearing loss and vision loss. We invite you to come see what else is different about them. (Class provided by the Hull Foundation and Hosted by ACB of Oregon)

June 16th Thursday, 10-11am PDT

Explaining MD and RP to others: How to do it with Deb Marinos.

Have you wondered? What’s it like to have AMD, which the central part of the eye is obscured or RP /glaucoma in which the peripheral or side vision is affected? Come learn with interactive exercises. You will need your paper simulator glasses.

June 16th Thursday 1-2pm PDT

Sight Loss and Hearing Loss, a group chat with Jael – Sight Loss Instructor

An opportunity to connect with other individuals who are hard of hearing as well as living with sight loss. Information and support are provided. Please invite your family and friends. (Class provided by the Hull Foundation and Hosted by ACB of Oregon)

June 16th Thursday 6-7pm PDT

Navigating Social Situations: Visually Impaired Vs Sighted

Social situations are hard anxiety filled situations. Marja invites you to join our first in an ongoing series about navigating social situations while experiencing sight loss. (Class provided by the Hull Foundation and Hosted by ACB of Oregon)


June 21st Tuesday, 10-11am PDT

Reading in the Dark Book Club with Monica.

Come share with a diverse group of people what you are currently reading and find your next good read!

June 22nd Wednesday, 6:30-8pm PDT

How are you doing how are you dealing? With Marja and Teresa – Sight Loss Instructors.

Going through sight loss has a huge learning curve, you’re not alone. Join Marja and the gang to chat about the ups and downs and ways around.

June 23rd Thursday, 10-11am PDT

Vision Transition: Tips tools and tricks to apply to your life or work. With Deb Marinos – Sight Loss Instructor.

So, what about solutions to vision loss? Learn about guiding, using a cane, other solutions including apps, tools, and strategies to many of the tasks of daily living and workplace solutions. 


June 23rd Thursday, 1-2pm PDT

Read More Books: favorite Apps with Jael and Michael– Sight Loss Instructors.

Over the last few months, Jael has covered a large variety of apps and book services. Let’s turn it over to you, what are your favorite reading apps? (Class provided by the Hull Foundation and Hosted by ACB of Oregon)



June 27th Monday, 7-8pm PDT

The Chat Cafe with Teresa and Carrie – Sight Loss Instructors

Pull up a chair; grab a mug; and sit by the fire. Chat about anything and everything. (Class provided by the Hull Foundation and Hosted by ACB)

June 28th Tuesday, 1-2pm PDT

Summer Crafting: A Personal Touch with Kat and Carrie – Sight Loss Instructors.

Someone special have a summer birthday coming up? Too hot to play outside? Need a little extra entertainment for the kiddos while you are camping? Get a little help from our resident crafter Kat! 

June 29th Wednesday, 10-11am PDT Decluttering with Teresa and Carrie – Sight Loss Instructors.

Meet Teresa, join her as she shares her decluttering journey over the last 20 years, just like you, she’s not perfect at it. Learn tips, tricks, and how to just keep at it. (Class provided by the Hull Foundation and Hosted by ACB of Oregon)

June 30th Thursday, 10-11am PDT

Vision Loss: Overcoming struggles with job loss and relationships with Deb Marinos – Sight Loss Instructor. Living with vision loss? Learn what causes job loss and relationship struggles. We will look at realities, psychological considerations, and strategies to make interactions easier – kinder and less stressful for both healthcare provider and person with vision loss. 

Living with Sight Loss Introduction Seminar
July 19–21, 2022, we are hosting an Introduction to Living with Sight Loss Seminar at Hull Park. The 2-night and 3-day schedule will contain immersive, hands-on workshops covering information to maintain independence, build self-confidence and converse with people who share sight loss. Topics include daily living skills, orientation and mobility functional information, vision assessments, sight aids, home organization tips, and more! Please contact the office at 503-668-6195 to request more information and a registration form.

More Upcoming Events
2022 will be an exciting and fun-filled year! If you are interested in any of our recreational Getaway events, one day events and Retreats, please contact our office and get signed up! The spots can fill up very quickly, so jump in with both feet and save your spot and come out to Hull Park in 2022!

One Day Fun Day – Why not spend a day with us either at our 23-acre park or out and about to see the locale attractions?  We have scheduled a day each month to hang out with those that share sight loss. We’ll pick you up at two locations and drop you back off at the end of the day!  Our next One Day Fun-Day”, is scheduled for July 6, 2022. The activities will be from 10:30 AM to 4:30 PM, with a break for lunch. The activities will include many different crafting skills. Choose from painting ornaments, knitting projects, Paper Mache, Modge Podge, and beading.  To find out more and to register, call our office at 503-668-6195. Come hang out with folks who share your sight loss!

Moderate Adventure Retreat- Aug. 10-16, 2022.  During this highly popular retreat, activities may include white water rafting, kayaking, hiking, winery tours, visiting local tourist sights, live action plays, and more!

High Adventure Retreat- Aug. 24-30, 2022

This retreat is designed to give guests opportunities to stretch their own physical limits!  Activities may include white water rafting, hiking in the Mt. Hood National Forest, various water sports, challenge courses, horseback riding, and much more!

Monster Mash Getaway- October 24-27, 2022

    Come get spooky with us for a seasonal favorite “Getaway!” We will have theme-based games, movie night, a trip to a local farm for hayrides, corn maze and pumpkin patch, a costume contest, and do the monster mash at the dance!

Winter Holiday Getaway- December 13-16, 2022

Come Deck the Halls with your friends and the Hull Park staff for this festive event! We will have holiday-themed games, treats, crafts, and on the final night a holiday banquet and live music which is open to friends and family.

Registrations are now available for these events! It is never too early to sign up as spots fill up very quickly. Please email the office at or call at 503-668-6195 for more information and to request a registration form.

 Jokes to Keep you Laughing…or Groaning!

Q. What do you call a snowman in June?
A. A puddle

Q. If April showers bring May flowers, what
    do May flowers bring?

A. June bugs

Q. How can you tell spring flowers are friendly?

A. They always have new buds.

Did you know that June 15th is National Lobster Day? 

Q.  Why don’t lobsters share?

A.  Because they are “shellfish!”

Did you know June 8th is World Ocean Day?

Q.  What did the Pacific Ocean say to the Atlantic Ocean?

A.  Nothing, it just “waved!”

Stay well, stay safe, and stay happy!

        The Hull Foundation Family
Phone:  503-668-6195  



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