Excerpt from Letters to Sam: A Grandfather's Lessons on Love, Loss, and the Gifts of Life: ”Being Productive”
In 2006, Dr. Daniel Gottlieb, Philadelphia psychotherapist, columnist, radio personality, and author, published Letters to Sam: A Grandfather’s Lessons of Love, Loss, and the Gifts of Life. Dr. Gottlieb and Sterling Publishing have graciously granted Empty Nestpermission to reprint a chapter from the book. In “Being ‘Productive,’” Dr. Dan shares the value of compassion, and how it should not be measured in dollars earned. Those who are giving and receiving compassion must always be recognized as living productive lives. Gottlieb (a quadriplegic due to a freak accident years ago) wrote the book for his autistic grandson—passing wisdom from one generation to the next—but the lessons he imparts can benefit readers of all ages . . .

Redefining Friendship
I used to put a lot of emphasis on the idea of a “best friend”—until, at the age of 45, I had a falling out with a long-time friend, resulting in irreparable damage to our relationship. I had always thought that our friendship was one thing in life that I would never need to question, and that nothing could tear us apart. We hit it off almost immediately when we met in junior high school—sharing secrets and talking about everything—and we laughed about things that we would reminisce about for many years to come . . .

10 Tips for Organizing Your Empty Nest
The term empty nester generally refers to parents whose children have gone off to feather their own nests. As many of us know, they don’t always take their stuff with them. Whether it’s your stuff or theirs, here are some ways to organize your empty nest: Ask the questions: “What motivates you? What is it you want to accomplish?” Have a goal, envision it, and write it down. Decide what your organized space will look like d . . .

Volunteering and Its Effects on Aging
This is the first edition of the column “Senior InSights”; I am so happy to be writing it for Empty Nest. The generations before me have provided me with insight, determination, and experiences that I would like to share with you. I hope this column will inspire you to share your thoughts and ideas as well. So, who am I? I was born on a farm in upstate NY. I earned degrees in both Fine Art and Fashion Design, and I have taught art and clothing design. I was also a caregiver for my late parents, which inspired me to become an advocate for seniors and the disabled . . .

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