Friday, April 8, 2016

Share Your Story, Create Your Legacy

Record personal stories for future generations...record the story of your life.

Share your legacy

Email or mail your story and photos to Sheila at 

or set up an interview and bring your scrapbook!


Life Is a Story What Does Yours Say?

Learn how to preserve valuable memories, life stories and history before it's too late.

To get started you may use these life interview questions from © SV Bosak, Legacy Project,
  • What’s your most cherished family tradition? Why is it important?
  • What have you liked best about your life so far? What’s your happiest or proudest moment?
  • What do you feel have been the important successes in your life? The frustrations?
  • What’s the most difficult thing that ever happened to you? How did you deal with it?
  • What do you think the turning points have been in your life? What were you like then?
  • Are there times of your life that you remember more vividly than others? Why?
  • What have been the most influential experiences in your life?
  • Describe a person or situation from your childhood that had a profound effect on the way you look at life.
  • If you were writing the story of your life, how would you divide it into chapters?
  • What, if anything, would you have done differently in your life?
  • What do you know now that you wish you’d known when you were young?
  • What have you thrown away in your life that you wish you hadn’t? What have you held on to that’s
  • important and why is it important? What “junk” have you held on to and why?
  • Over time, how have you changed the way you look at life/people?
  • What advice did your grandparents or parents give you that you remember best?
  • Do you have a philosophy of life? What’s your best piece of advice for living? If a young person came to you
  • asking what’s the most important thing for living a good life, what would you say?
  • How do you define a “good life” or a “successful life”?
  • Do you think a person needs to first overcome serious setbacks or challenges to be truly successful?
  • In what way is it important to know your limitations in your life or career?
  • If you had the power to solve one and only one problem in the world, what would it be and why?
  • What do you see as your place or purpose in life? How did you come to that conclusion?
  • What would you like your children and grandchildren to remember about you?
  • If you could write a message to each of your children and grandchildren and put it in a time capsule for
  • them to read 20 years from now, what would you write to each?

Why Should I Share My Story?

The process of “life review,” or compiling and sharing life stories, can be a powerful experience for both storytellers and their loved ones. It is an opportunity to preserve memories, bring generations together, and create a lasting legacy.

In addition, studies have shown that telling your story can enhance mental and emotional well-being by enabling you to:

• Derive a sense of accomplishment from past achievements • Resolve old conflicts and feelings of ambivalence
• Reaffirm past and present values
• Create fulfilling future goals

Email or mail your story and photos to Sheila at 

or set up an interview and bring your scrapbook!

Louis Marques

Louis Marques a man from Fulton Street...he claimed not fame or glory; he sought not high office or chairmanship of the board. The only son of a hard working Portuguese family, it is here he shall live in remembrance with his one devotion in life, his mother Mary and father Manuel. In passing he preferred the needs of the seniors of Peabody and he left his fortunes for their benefit, at the Torigian Senior Center.

The greatness and generousness of this man from the East End of our great City for his donations to those institutions of health and wellness as a gift to those most deserving. Let it be known that Louis Marques is not forgotten by his acts of kindness to the Seniors of Peabody known and is here that he will always be remembered, we Thank you and God bless you Louis Marques.

Topsfield Fairgrounds Show features Peabody textile crafter Barbara Legere - Low Vision Success Story

Barbara Legere of Peabody is among the crafters featured in the textile painting, crafts division exhibit at the Topsfield Fairgrounds, off Route 1 in Topsfield, this past year.

Barbara shares her Blue Ribbon success story as a member of the low vision group at the Peabody Council on Aging.  Her story tells what she gained through her connections with mentors and how the low vision group helped her learn new activities they she never thought possible.

- Barbara Legere, 86 year old member of the low vision group at the Peabody Council on Aging
I am telling this story with great humility, not to seek accolades, but rather to acknowledge a community of wonderful men and women who made this happen & to encourage others with low vision or handicaps that may think they can't, to try.

My top 10 women who inspire me here at Torigian Community Life Center, managed by the Peabody Council On Aging are:

  1. Kay Morrocco - want to be just like her when I grow up! (she told me the other day I inspire her, perhaps I have begun to grow with your help Kay)
  2. Carolyn Wynn, Director - Nobody does it better! Who leads us with grace and takes time to visit & observe each activity and see how everyone is doing. Great dancer as well!
  3. April Lussier, Volunteer Coordinator - seeks upbeat people like herself to fit the bill and cheerfully keeps us rolling (such energy) wow!
  4. Sheila Dzengelewski, Social Services - who helps me patiently with mounds of paperwork and is teaching me to Blog. Super Job!
  5. Jen Buchanan, Brilliant Director of the Low Vision Group - who advocates, uplifts, educates, encourages and comforts us while informing us of resources and help available. Jen works untiringly, spearheading fundraisers to purchase items for low vision members. Truly amazing gal!
  6.  Judy Walker, Activities Director - awesome job planning dances, our trip to Rockport, flower show trips and, luckily for me, obtained Stacey Valletti, Peabody Glen Market Specialist.  Stacey put on the "Paint & Sip" program where my prize winning scarf was created, here at the Torigian Center. Thank you Judy and Stacey, never did I dream I could do it. My grandchildren think I'm a "rock star"!
  7. Betty Brennan - teaches us to serve with heart! (she has the biggest!) Ties a mean scarf! And is always ready to help :)
  8. Pat Jenkins, Tips & Topics volunteer - and dear friend who enlisted daughter, Donna Chigas of Salem (best mentor ever). Donna has won 40+ blue ribbons at the Topsfield Fairgrounds and is known for her coleus living wreaths. The wreaths which start with seeds, grow and change with the seasons; a tradition started by her grandmother in England. Donna helped me complete the entry application for the Topsfield Fairgrounds exhibition.  She and mom stood in line to ensure that it was entered into the proper division and class.  Their whole family whooped and hollered with joy when I got blue ribbon - thank you friends.
  9. Toni Dunn, Fitness Director, who keeps us fit, healthy and on our toes. Love her wit & humor.
  10. Dottie, in transportation, who gets us where we need to go on time and gives warm hugs when we lose a family member, great gal!
Such inspiration is hard to come by and I am so grateful to not only the above mentioned women but to ALL the fantastic men & women who volunteer and keep things humming at the PCOA.

I certainly must thank our competent photographers who capture "The Forever Young Spirit" of the seniors at work and play. Outstanding job gentlemen, you are the best!!

Kudos also to Tom Bennett, a neighbor, who took my photo for the blog. He is a professional and terrific!

Forgive me if I do not respond to comments, no internet yet, but hopefully soon.