Andy Trujillo: Calm in the COVID-19 Storm

Andy Trujillo

Massage therapist Andy Trujillo is a native Las Vegan, although he didn’t grow up here. He was born in one of the small buildings on the Plaza, but never thought he would return after his family moved to Albuquerque. His story is in his calming nature and you can hear it as Andy recounts how he grew into his profession.

“I feel like I have been doing massage most of my life. I have memories of massaging my father’s back and shoulders by walking on his back as a small child. I also remember doing the same for my uncles and somehow knowing where and how hard to press. As a pre-teen or a teenager, I remember my relatives bringing babies to me if they were fussy or crying a lot and I would know how to quiet them down very quickly and put them to sleep. Sometimes rubbing their tummies or just knowing why they were crying.

“My work was never truly satisfying until after I was injured in a car accident in 1990 and underwent regular massage therapy in my recovery. I knew in my heart that I could help people through massage and decided then to pursue my Massage Therapist education and license. I have been licensed as a massage therapist since 1992.”

Andy has owned his business for the entire 28 years of his career, and prides himself in providing a therapeutic, but gentle massage. He specializes in pain relief and practices on all ages.

“My youngest client was an infant and my oldest client was my 99 year-old grandmother. In my practice, I offer a combination of different types of massage to fit the client’s individual needs, including Swedish, Deep Tissue, Shiatsu, Polarity and Reflexology.”

Andy said COVID-19 down time was used to complete the the process of moving his office.

“When the health and safety restrictions were instituted, my wife and I decided to renovate a part of our home and create a new office during the time I was unable to work. The loss of income was worth it for me to allow me the time to rethink my business and how I would operate moving forward,” he said.

For Andy, the good that came out of temporary closure  was a renewed emphasis on continuing to provide a safe environment for customers.

“Massage therapy is truly an individual session, in close quarters to the client, so I now conduct my business with even closer attention to infection control practices,” Andy said.

His practice if fully reopened. He controls the number of clients he sees each week, which takes care of social distancing, but Andy also follows mandated restrictions set forth by health officials to protect his clients and himself.

“I have been cautious as I reopen by screening my clients and taking temperatures before we start.”

Andy will continue to maintain high-level precautions by limiting the number of people he sees.

“By spreading my appointments out, I have time to disinfect my entire office, including not only my table, but all the furniture, lamps, down to the pens I have for clients to use. I wear a mask and have my clients wear a mask during the session. I ask a short series of screening questions and take the individual’s temperature before we start. My wife and I have both been tested and are negative right now for the virus.”

Andy loves his profession and is committed to the safety of clients, himself and family members.

“I will not compromise on that,” he said. “I will probably keep most of the new precautions in place in my business even after we have a safe way to live in the world with COVID-19 because they make sense and provide a much healthier way to serve the community.”

Few are prepared when something as devastating as a pandemic hits. Andy said he was fortunate his professional organization provided the guidance he needed as he prepared to reopen with safety in mind.

Moving forward, Andy shared a concern many small businesses owners have, that they, or their clients might become infected despite all the precautions. He will continue to operate under the new guidelines, now and into the future. For Andy, it is simply the right thing to do.

Andy Trujillo Massage Therapist is located at 2910 8th Street. The entrance is on Williams Drive.

“I work mostly Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., but am available for weekends or later hours if needed.”

Contact information for the practice is 505 250-7928.

“Please leave a message if I do not answer. “I silence my phone and do not take calls when I am with my clients.”

NOTE: I am featuring local businesses, nonprofits, and organizations in this series of articles about how COVID-19 has affected our community . If you would like to participate, email for more information.

I am an indie author of six books and two chap books of poetry. Check the BOOKS tab to find out more. Follow me at,, Amazon Author Central. Please like, share, or comment – or all three!



Smile away the bluesCOVID-19 has become painfully personal. No, I don’t have it, and neither does my husband Bob, but he did fall and break his left femur and consequently ended up in Santa Fe at Presbyterian where he is – as I write this – in surgery. It is, a doctor friend tells me, a short and straightforward surgery, one he has had before on the other side. The personal part of this is that I cannot be with him or see him after surgery. Strict rules regarding patient safety in the age of COVID-19 prevents family members from seeing or being with their loved ones while they are hospitalized.

I’ve read about other people going through this, but you don’t “get it” until it happens to you.

The surgery is the first step. Following that he will have PT. The last time this happened three years ago, he was away from home for nearly six weeks, but I could be with him during the day and keep him supplied with newspapers for reading and Starbucks from Charlie’s to make him smile. Can’t do that this time!

Frustrating? Yes! There must be a better way. And yet, I know because of the precautions the local re-hab/nursing home has taken, it has had no cases of COVID-19. So, if Bob has to be in re-hab, I would hope he could do it in Las Vegas where I could at least wave at him through the window.

I believe hospitals are doing the right thing to protect patients and the public, but that doesn’t make it easier. Please keep my dear one and me in your prayers. And to all our friends and neighbors who have been through – or are going through – similar circumstances, prayers lifted for you all! I no longer simply sympathize, I understand.

Oh, crap! An update. Bob’s surgery was supposed to be at 3 o’clock this afternoon; now postponed by a day because they couldn’t get him into the surgery schedule! This means at least another day added to the estimated 4-day hospital stay. AAAAARRRRGH!

One day at a time, Sweet Jesus, one day at a time.

I am an indie author of six books and two chap books of poetry. Check the BOOKS tab to find out more. Follow me at,, Amazon Author Central. I frequently write about my town, Las Vegas, N.M. Occasionally I use interesting and helpful content from other sources. I also invite guest posts. If you have a topic you would like to share, send to fsharon@msn. com.


Las Vegas NM Community Foundation

Note: This is the first in a series of articles about how businesses, nonprofits and event planners are navigating the future post-COVID 19. Partial reopening is a first step, and there is no predicting the future should there be a resurgence of corona virus. Responses to these questions are from Elmo Baca, president of the Las Vegas NM Community Foundation.

Community Foundation

The Foundation and Its Mission

The Las Vegas NM Community Foundation was founded in January 2017 by Bob Mishler along with founding board members Felix Alderete, Elmo Baca, Cindy Collins, Doyle Daves, Bill Hendrickson, Donna Rivas, Jennifer Sanchez and Max Trujillo. Founding volunteer Jean Hill assisted with non-profit by laws and designation. The Las Vegas Foundation is a 501©(3) charitable organization created to support philanthropic giving for non-profit organizations in Las Vegas and the immediate region, including Mora County. The Las Vegas Foundation is an affiliate and partner of the Santa Fe Community Foundation, where Las Vegas Community Foundation funds are currently invested, ensuring the highest fiscal and programmatic integrity to its work. The mission of the Las Vegas Foundation is simply “Help Las Vegas Thrive.”

How has COVID-19 had an impact on the Foundation?

The coronavirus pandemic has had an impact in a few critical ways. After the state effectively closed businesses and other public venues in late March, the Board of Directors decided to postpone the “Chili Challenge” annual fundraising reception which was scheduled for April 30. Last year the Chili Challenge (so called because a chili pepper icon is used as a measuring gauge for donations) was well-attended by community members and raised over $17,000 to benefit the community. At this date the Chili Challenge event has not been rescheduled due to the continuing restrictions on public gatherings in New Mexico. After the serious economic impacts of the pandemic have mounted, the Foundation created an Emergency Grant Fund to provide support to local humanitarian nonprofit organizations, such as soup kitchens, health and community centers, and family assistance groups. The Las Vegas Foundation has had two rounds of grant making since April funding a dozen local non-profit organizations in Las Vegas, Mora and Villanueva with $10,125 in grants. The Foundation is prepared to consider future rounds of emergency grants as the pandemic continues to impact the community.

Bob Mishler’s Legacy

Bob MishlerThe sudden passing of founder Bob Mishler on May 24 was a tragic event that has affected the entire community, as Bob was involved in many projects and organizations. Bob had a great interest in people, their histories and social fabric. He was involved in historic preservation projects for nearly 50 years after his family moved here from Colorado in the late 1970s. He served for many years as Chairman of the City’s Design Review Board, Citizens Committee for Historic Preservation and the Friends of the Las Vegas Museum. Bob saw the need for Las Vegas to have a community foundation that could create an endowment for Las Vegas to support the vital work of nonprofit organizations and also collaborate with city and county governments on essential community projects. Bob worked tirelessly to attract volunteers and board members to the Foundation, raise funds, and provide its guiding vision. He was active in a review of an Emergency grant application on the day of his passing.

Eligible Grantees

The Las Vegas NM Community Foundation provides modest grants to local nonprofit organizations in good standing (properly filed corporate reports and tax forms). Eligible nonprofit organizations must serve the people of San Miguel and Mora Counties, be nondiscriminatory in staffing and services, and be at least one year old. The Foundation can’t contribute to capital campaigns or endowments, individuals, private school tuition assistance, religious projects or scholarships. The funding categories include Arts and Culture, Community Development, Cultural and Historic Preservation, Education, Health Care and Natural Conservation.

Application Process

The Las Vegas NM Community Foundation has offered grants to nonprofits for the past two years and is expecting its third annual cycle beginning in September with a public announcement of grant availability. Grant applications are available by emailing . We also notify nonprofit organizations directly via email of our grants program. Grant applications are due in mid-October, with announcement of awards in December. Funds are provided in early January. Also, as noted above, the Foundation may create emergency or project grant cycles at its discretion. Interested groups may see our website at, contact a Board Member or contact our Administrative Coordinator Linda Anderle at Correspondence and donations may also be mailed to LVNMCF, P.O. Box 1002, Las Vegas NM 87701.

Fund Raising Campaigns

With Bob Mishler’s sudden passing on May 24, the Board of Directors has established two Bob Mishler Memorial Funds in his memory. The Bob Mishler Memorial Fund is a general donation fund with a primary purpose of building the endowment, as Bob had wished. The second fund is called the Bob Mishler Memorial Clock Fund. Bob rescued the historic Gordon’s Jewelers cast iron street clock, which stood on Douglas Avenue near the corner of Sixth Street for decades. After the passing of longtime owner Calvin Baker, the iconic street clock fell into disrepair. Bob bought the clock with the intention of restoring it. Bob had nearly finished the project when he passed. The Board of Directors have recognized the clock project as a fitting symbol for Bob’s community service and his philanthropy. The Clock Fund will provide the financial support to restore the clock and reinstall it. The Clock Fund will also create a “Pillars of the Community” Award program to honor deserving individuals who have made significant contributions to the community.

The Board of Directors is also considering Donor advised funds whereby generous individuals or families may support projects and programs of particular interest such as the arts or health care for example. Legacy gifts of property, financial equities, and other items of value to benefit the community are also encouraged. Donations may be made at and also through the Santa Fe Community Foundation by inquiring about the Greater Las Vegas Fund.

NOTE: I am featuring local businesses, nonprofits, and organizations in this series of articles about how COVID-19 has affected our community . If you would like to participate, email for more information.


Mr. C Returns

Quick Fact

Mr. C is back and has taken up residence in my bladder. I know, TMI, but I’m sharing this information because bladder cancer is one of the most common cancers in the U.S., affecting about 68,000 adults each year. According to the Mayo Clinic website, it occurs more often in men than women. I appear to be one of the lucky women who has it. Bladder cancer can happen at any age, but it is more common in older adults. I’m 75, prime time.

Early detection – as is often the case – means treatment is likely to be successful. Someone asked me what stage the cancer is. You’d think I would know, but I don’t. I start treatment next week, one a week for six weeks, followed by two years of treatment, one every three months. With bladder cancer, frequent monitoring is a must as it – as my doctor said – is unlikely to go away permanently. The best course of action is vigilance.

The first procedure, before the treatment plan was determined, took place on May 6, delayed because of COVID-19 and the need for critical care facilities. The procedure determined the presence of tumors and the likelihood they were malignant. Further testing revealed there are tumors, and yes, they are malignant.

The good news is, I won’t have chemo; I’ll undergo an immunotherapy regimen, which is less intrusive and arduous than chemo. It is not without risk as the drug I will be taking contains TB cells, which creates a hostile environment in the bladder that prevents the cancer cells from growing. (I hope I got that right.) I won’t go into detail about what one must do once the drug is eliminated. Suffice it to say one must be VERY careful.

So, prayer is appreciated. No worrying allowed. I’m a tough old nut and have survived Mr. C’s other visitations to my body.

Because it is fairly common, I’m including some of the symptoms you might want to talk to your doctor about if you have them.

Bladder cancer signs and symptoms may include:
• Blood in urine (hematuria)

• Painful urination
• Pelvic pain

If you have hematuria, your urine may appear bright red or cola colored. Sometimes, urine may not look any different, but blood in urine may be detected during a microscopic exam of the urine.

People with bladder cancer might also experience:
• Back pain

• Frequent urination

Be well; stay healthy. As we age, it is ever more important to be alert to symptoms and see the doctor about concerns you may have. It – whatever it is – won’t magically go away, just because you want it to. It’s your health; be proactive. See your health care professional regularly.

I am an indie author of six books and two chap books of poetry. Check the BOOKS tab to find out more. Follow me at,, Amazon Author Central




January 1, guilts many of us into making resolutions. I’m not much into assigning myself tasks I’m unlikely to fulfill, but it’s become part of our national tradition to think about all the things that are wrong with us and then figure out ways to fix those flaws in the next 12 months.

This is the way I see it, five ways times two, to a better you.

Five reasons not to feel guilty your resolutions have crashed and burned

Even if you don’t keep your resolutions, you benefit from having made them. Resolutions are practical decisions intended to make you a better you, which takes a positive mindset. Studies show that a positive attitude improves your outlook and your disposition, which does indeed, make you a better you.

It’s probably something that made you feel bad about yourself anyway. Resolutions to quit this bad habit or that bad habit throw you into a negative mode from the get-go. The day to start a healthier lifestyle isn’t Jan. 1; it’s any day you are empowered to make positive changes.

You’re not alone. A 2019 U.S. News & World Report report indicated an 80 percent failure rate among those who made resolutions, with most respondents losing their resolve by mid-February, if not sooner. The trick, if you must make a resolution, is to keep it simple, doable and with a short shelf life. “I’m going to clean my dresser, one drawer at a time, over six days,” (six drawers, six days; get it?) is more doable than, “I’m going to walk five miles every day.” I’m exhausted just thinking about it.

Making a resolution gives you something to think about. So, you didn’t make or keep a resolution. So what? It made you think about changes you can make at any time to improve your health or some other aspect of your life. That is something to feel good about.

If you don’t make a resolution, you don’t have to feel bad when you don’t keep it. Guilt is a terrible motivator. It makes you cranky and resentful and dribbles salt into your wounded ego when you don’t achieve the often impossible goals you set.

Tackle self-improvement in a more holistic and creative way that avoids negativity and makes life better for you and those around you.

Five healthy habits to make your life better without the messy guilt of not keeping a resolution

If you smoke, quit. There has never been a scientific study that says smoking is in any way good for you. As a former smoker I can say categorically it is the worst thing you can do to your body. And vaping? Good grief. It is not a safe substitute.

Walk regularly, no excuses. Walking is good cardio, gets you out in the sunlight, creates opportunities for you to interact with other people, limbers you up, improves mood, boosts your energy, burns calories and contributes to creativity.

Call a friend and just chat. Friends are the family we create for ourselves. Good friends help bolster your sense of purpose and lift you up when you’re down. They listen without judgment and help you keep life in perspective. They are a shoulder to cry on and the ones who get it when you’re laughing about something that makes no sense to anyone but the two of you. These are inexplicable relationships you can’t do without.

Laugh every chance you get. Laughter truly is the best medicine. Align yourself with people who know what it means to bust loose with a guffaw, a giggle, a snort. People who laugh with babies and those who wipe tears from their eyes from laughing so hard at a well-told tale are among my favorite people. Know and respect the difference between laughing with others, not at them.

Become involved in a project or organization. Studies have shown that people who have a purpose are the happiest and most fulfilled. Every organization needs participants, members and volunteers. Lend your skills to a worthwhile cause and reap the benefits of better health and building relationships.

So, there you have it. Think about what you can do and have done, not necessarily to improve yourself, but to make the world around you a better place. That alone makes you better today than you were yesterday, and there is a ripple affect; it has a lasting impact.

Follow Sharon at:
Amazon Author Central

I have shingles. Ugh!

 What I have learned:

  • Sharon VSince I found out two days ago, nearly every third person I’ve mentioned it to has had shingles, hence the staggering national average that says 40 percent of Americans will experience the itchy painful illness at some point in their lives.
  • Shingles is not the first thing that pops into a medical provider’s head when you go in complaining of an ear ache or other pain, especially when you are otherwise in excellent health. I saw three providers before I happened across an article my husband was reading about shingles shots. In reading it, I found that I had five of the eight symptoms listed. When I went to the ER here, I mentioned the possibility and guess what? By golly, Mrs. Vander Meer, you do have shingles!” I’m on meds and they are working, but I suffered about seven days of outrageous pain before treatment began.
  • Shingles does not always reveal as a cluster of pulpy sores as seen in medical site photos. It is on my scalp and hidden by my hair, which may be why nobody spotted it, despite my saying “My head is on FIRE!” But I digress. I’m much better now.
  • Stress IS a contributing factor. We all have stress and it doesn’t always lead to shingles, but let this be a reminder that every day counts, every moment can make or break you, don’t let tension rule your life.

I want to thank my friend Em Krall. When I was feeling my worst, she worked her magic and helped me get rid of a lot of tension.

I want to thank by friend Kathy Allen, who called last night out of the blue and made me laugh and feel her long-distance hug.

I want to thank my friend Mary Schipper, whose encouragement and positive outlook let me see the bigger picture. It’s more than “this too will pass,” it’s more about appreciating what you have right here, right now.

I want to thank my nephew and great nephew, Seth and Carter, for bringing us food and mail and newspapers.

Shingles is by no means life-threatening and most of us get through it without too much angst, but it does get your attention. The pain is indeed, painful. The blisters can be unsightly. The healing may end but neurological reactions may continue. There’s no guarantee you won’t get it again. (This is supposed to be the upside!) It does make you stop and think about being joy-filled and a joy to be around. I confess when this all started I was a bit of a grumpy puss, which is not like me at all. So, to anyone I snapped at, forgive me.

My poor husband has suffered from this as much as I have, maybe more. The poor guy has been house bound because I didn’t feel much like getting out, and I’m the official driver! Can anyone say CABIN FEVER! I’m mostly kidding. His greatest concern is for me, so I thank him most of all for being patient and doing everything he could to take care of me. I am truly blessed.

– Sharon on the mend

Follow Sharon at:
Amazon Author Central


Key Questions to Help You Choose a Medicare Plan

Decision time for Medicare(NewsUSA) – If you’re one of 56 million Americans eligible for Medicare, it’s important to understand coverage options when selecting your health plan for 2020.

Research can take time, and many people find working with a licensed health insurance agent helpful when deciding between Original Medicare, Medicare Advantage plans, Prescription Drug Plans and Medicare Supplement plans. Answering these three questions can help you make an informed choice during the Medicare Annual Election Period, October 15 to December 7:

  • Are my doctors, hospitals and specialists in network? Most Medicare Advantage plans offer online tools to help you find doctors and hospitals that are in a plan’s network. A licensed agent can also help you look up hospitals and doctors to see if they’re in a plan’s network and taking new patients, and confirm what’s in network if you’re a seasonal resident
  • Which plans will cover my prescription drugs? Original Medicare does not cover most prescription drugs. Many Medicare Advantage plans include prescription drug coverage, or you can sign up for a Part D Prescription Drug Plan separately. A licensed agent can look up the medications you would like covered and help you estimate what the cost of each drug would be on a plan.
  • Are there new, innovative benefits I should consider? Beyond vision, hearing and dental coverage, if you aim to become healthier, look for fitness program benefits as many Medicare Advantage plans offer a gym membership. If you travel or appreciate technology, virtual doctors are helpful services when you can’t see a doctor right away. Most Medicare Advantage plans now offer transportation to doctor appointments and the gym.

Resources are available to help you in this process, including licensed sales agents, local seminars, and websites such as and You can also call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227) (or TTY: 1-877-486-2048) 24 hours a day, seven days a week, or call Humana at 1-800-213-5286 (TTY: 711) 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. local time seven days a week.

Humana is a Medicare Advantage HMO, PPO, and PFFS organization, and stand-alone prescription drug plan, with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in any Humana plan depends on plan renewal.

Follow Sharon at:
Amazon Author Central

It’s all about health

Drs. Carlos and Elena SandovalAs health care providers, Las Vegan Drs. Carlos Sandoval and Elena Sanchez Sandoval want to take their patients’ health to the next level. They believe you can unleash your body’s innate ability to heal, and are trained to help you get there. Their chiropractic office, Infinite Health Care in Santa Fe, NM, provides a range of services with that in mind. The couple earned their doctorates in chiropractic medicine at Life Chiropractic College West in San Jose, Calif. Below they respond to questions about their health philosophy.

Q: You had different experiences that influenced your decision to become chiropractors. Would each of you talk briefly about those experiences?
Carlos: We both discovered chiropractic the same way the majority of people discover chiropractic, a low back injury. I was 21, and at that time had no idea what a chiropractor was or did. I was working out one day. When I went to rack the weight after a set of squats, I missed the rack and dropped 350 pounds on my back. It was the worst injury and pain I had ever experienced in my entire life. The low back pain was excruciating. I went home and took painkillers, and iced it, thinking it would go away in a day or so. I was wrong. I woke up the next morning not able to stand up, and the pain was worse. This continued for the next five days. I finally went to my medical doctor and he did the only thing he knew to do to get me out of pain, which was to prescribe opioids. Little did I know a person is not supposed to take opioids for more than four days. My prescription was good for two months; it got me out of pain, but didn’t fix the problem. I took the pills but was not back to living my normal active life. I was on opioids for a month a half before I ran into a friend who was a nurse. She explained to me the dangers of opioids and suggested I go see her chiropractor. I immediately made an appointment with Dr. Powers, the local chiropractor at the time, to see if he could help me out. After a consultation and a couple of x-rays he sat me down and explained exactly what was wrong with me, and laid out his recommendations to fix it. I followed his recommendations and just after a few visits I was completely out of pain and no longer in need of the opioids. I thought it was the coolest thing ever. The longer I stayed under care, the more I noticed how other health issues such as digestive problems and chronic sinusitis, started to improve or diminish. At the time I was going to school at NMHU to become a physical therapist, but after my time in Dr. Powers office, it inspired me to become a chiropractor. I applied to schools and that’s where my journey to become a chiropractor started.

A: Elena: When Dr. Carlos started chiropractic college I was trying to figure out what I wanted. I knew I wanted to be in the health field, I wanted to have opportunities to teach others about health through nutrition and exercise, and was also fascinated by the field of radiography. The college we went to offers something called “Champions Weekend.” They host you at the college for a weekend to learn what chiropractic actually is. I went into the weekend thinking it was all about pain relief. My world was completely turned upside down. Not only did I learn that chiropractic is about health and how our bodies heal and function, but I also realized how my own body had changed while under chiropractic care myself. When Dr. Carlos was under care with Dr. Powers in Las Vegas, I got under care as well, not really knowing what it was for or about, I did it because Carlos said it would be good for me and that it would help with my workouts. After about three months I noticed that I no longer needed my inhaler to be active; I could breathe and recover completely on my own. My menstrual cycle was for the first time since it started completely normal and regular; it used to come and go and last for weeks to a month at a time and the cramps were unbearable. Seasonal allergies I had every spring no longer existed. Chiropractic has given me my life and potential back.

Q. After practicing in California following graduation, what brought you back to New Mexico and why Santa Fe?
After California, we initially moved to Colorado Springs, Colo., thinking that was going to be the place we called home. However, after living there for three months we realized that it wasn’t the place for us. New Mexico is our home and we felt called to come back to our home state to serve the people here. There are not that many chiropractors in the area and we felt that our friends and family were not getting the care they deserve. So we packed up, left Colorado and settled down in Santa Fe. The moment we got back to New Mexico, we knew we made the right decision. It’s been amazing to help our friends and families who have come into the office, as well as all the other amazing people we have come across.

Q: In life, we look at obstacles as challenges or opportunities. What are the opportunities you face in building your patient base in the City Different?
Two things come to mind and both have to do with educating our community. First, there is a major misconception about chiropractic. People think it is only about neck pain and back pain. There is so much more to chiropractic than that. Chiropractic has the ability to influence a person’s overall health because of the intimate relationship between the spine and the nervous system. Your nervous system is made up of the brain, spinal cord and individual nerves. This system is what controls every function in the body. The main point of the spine is to support and keep us upright, but also – and more important – to protect the spinal cord. A healthy spinal cord is essential to our overall health. If the spine is not in its normal position, this could affect the function of your overall health.

Second, people don’t value their health enough to be proactive about it. Health is our greatest asset and if we lose our health, we lose everything. The majority of people wait until they get a symptom or get sick, then want to cover it with a pill, lotion or potion. They think that if they look good or feel good then that must mean they are healthy. The unfortunate problem with that is, by the time someone is experiencing a symptom it can be a lot harder to get back to health, or too late for successful treatment.

Q: Talk about some of the ways you are getting your name before the public?
One is utilizing social media such was Facebook and Instagram. We do our best to put out tons of valuable information to the public on chiropractic and health. Another way, and one of our favorites, is doing corporate health talks and lunch and learns. We partner with local businesses to arrange a day we can take them to lunch and do a health talk for them. They are always fun and a great way to get our name out and educate the community as well.

Q: What services do you provide that address your patients’ overall health?
What sets us apart is that our office is a “health center” not just a chiropractic center. Chiropractic is the foundation to getting our patients back to 100 percent health. We know there is a normal position for the spine, which is perfectly straight from the front, and from the side there should be 3 perfect 45-degree curves. When our spine is in that position, there is no stress on the nervous system, the brain is communicating with the body the way it should at 100 percent, and the body is functioning and healing the way it is intended to do.

Most people we see don’t have spines in that position. This is where we implement our spinal corrective technique to get the spine back to its normal position, which allows for better overall health, functioning and healing. We also work with our patients on nutrition, exercise, developing a positive mindset and becoming more aware of the toxins around them. We do one-on-one consultations, but the big thing we do is our monthly educational workshops on specific health topics. This is to help our patients become more health conscious and to make better-informed decisions about their health.

Q: What do you most want potential patients to know about you as providers of health care?
Health is a journey, and we are with our patients the entire journey. We truly care about people, want to see them well. Our goal is that people are THRIVING and not simply surviving, we want our patients to enjoy their lives with their loved ones doing what they love doing. We offer our help and guidance to everyone.

Q: What can a patient expect when he or she comes to your office?
Our office is unique compared to most other chiropractic offices. It takes a little more to become a patient because of the specific spinal corrective process we implement. It is a 3-day/step process. Day 1 is data-gathering day. This is the visit during which we gather all the information we need to determine if we can help that patient. This includes a comprehensive consultation, examination and necessary x-rays. The second visit, we bring the patient back the next day to let them know if they are a good candidate for our office, spinal correction and chiropractic. If they are, they will receive their first chiropractic adjustment and a follow-up stress x-ray to see how they responded to the chiropractic adjustment. At this time, we have all the information we need to determine how many visits and how long it will take to correct the patient’s spine back to its normal position. That brings us to the third visit, our required new patient workshop. In the workshop we teach them what normal x-rays should look like, how it affects their health and why it is important to get adjusted. We teach them and give them all the information they need to be the doctor so that it is a doctor-doctor relationship not a doctor-patient relationship. This helps our patients understand their problem in more depth and detail, which helps them get better, quicker results. After the workshop, which is about 20-30 minutes, we go into private rooms, go over the patient’s x-rays, the care plan on what it’s going to take to correct the problem, and the financial investment.

Once the patient signs up, every time they come in for a visit they follow a three-step process. Step 1 is to warm up the spine. We teach our patients specific spinal corrective exercises to help warm up their spines for the adjustment, build strength and mobility in the spine and help hydrate the discs. Step 2 is the adjustment. We meet with the patient at the table to deliver the specific chiropractic adjustment. At the table we have the x-rays pulled up along with the listings of subluxations (misalignments in the spine) that we found, and we use a variety of techniques and tools to adjust. After the patient gets adjusted, they go to our spine and posture rehab area. This is step 3. We use complete body weighting systems and high frequency vibration platforms to reconstruct the spine and posture back to the normal position that it is supposed to be in. This 3-step process is repeated every time they come into our office for the number of recommended visits. We also give our patients a homecare kit and teach them specific exercises to do at home. This a way they can support what we are doing in the office.

Q: Do you treat children and teens as well as adults? How are treatments methods different based on age, or are they?
As chiropractors we do not treat anything. We practice a salutogenic model, which gives birth to health, not the treatment of a specific condition. What we know and do is improve the function of the nervous system, which allows the body to heal and improves overall health. We do have specific CARE for infants, children and teens. We are a family-based office and aim to help our patients from womb to tomb. Dr. Elena is the pregnancy and pediatric specialist and one of the very few in the state. Adjusting and caring for children is different from adults. Infants, children and teens have different spines. Adjustments for children are very gentle, safe and effective. The amount of pressure used to correct the spine of a child is about the same amount of pressure you would use to test a tomato. Since children have not lived and accumulated the stressors that adults have, their care and frequency is much less than that of an adult, and they respond quickly to care, in some cases instantly. Parents have reported that through chiropractic care their children have improved immune systems (get sick less often and recover from colds quickly), improved sleep (especially with infants, they sleep through the night) and improved disposition.

Q: What do you most enjoy about the work you do?
The thing we enjoy most is seeing the health transformations people go through, which allows them to get their lives back. We have truly seen some amazing things happen while people are under chiropractic care.

Infinite Health Center is located at 2860 Cerrillos Rd., Suite C-2, Santa Fe, NM. For appointments contact their office at 505-772-0114. For more information e-mail and check out their website at,


Getting healthy

I hope…

Weight Loss

When I was young, I weighed 100 pounds soaking wet. And then I got married and rocketed up to 153. I took control of my weight and successfully used the Atkins diet, now referred to more commonly at the ketogenic diet. This high protein/low carb eating plan worked. Lots of meat, no potatoes.

Back in the day, Atkins was THE THING for serious dieters. I went from 153 to 120 over a three-month period, and kept the weight off for several years. It slowly crept back and nothing I did seemed to make a difference. I hovered around 140. Not the best weight for someone who is 5’1” (now 4’11”). Yes, I am shrinking vertically; horizontally, not so much.

I did try Weight Watchers, and I must say, it was helpful, but I hated going to all those meetings! Yeah, I know, you can do it online now, but there’s too much of a disconnect when it comes to accountability. What worked with the going-to-meetings thing was an element of competition. Every week I wanted to be the one who lost the most weight.

Anyway, my next major weight loss was the divorce diet. I don’t recommend it. Months of stress, not eating and generally feeling like shit. I went from 140 to 104 in four weeks. No lie. That weight I kept off for quite a while.

Life took a happy turn when I married a wonderful man. I sort of managed my weight without really trying until I quit working full time. And then it packed on. I have no interest in being svelte; I just want to be healthy. So, I thought I’d once again try the Atkins (ketogenic) approach. Turns out, I don’t really like meat all that much, no matter what form or what animal it comes from. I am now embarking on a mission to reduce carbs, eat healthy and avoid meat, especially red meat. Aging doesn’t help, of course. Losing weight in my mid-70s is proving to be more of a challenge than I anticipated.

I would like some helpful feedback from readers, and tasty recipes (which I will be happy to share with permission), on this blog. You can e-mail recipes directly to me at, or post in the comments below.

Here’s a favorite frittata recipe you might enjoy. Serves two.

Egg and Broccoli Frittata

Flash boil 1 cup of broccoli for 60 to 90 seconds. Drain and set aside
Beat four large eggs with a tablespoon of milk. Salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

¼ cup each, chopped red and green bell peppers, sautéed
Chop cooled broccoli and add to bell peppers and continue to sauté.
½ cup feta cheese
½ cup +/- cheddar cheese

Spray pie plate with salad oil. Sprinkle feta cheese over the bottom. Layer the broccoli/pepper mix evenly. Pour egg mixture over everything. Bake in 375-degree oven for 18 to 20 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle cheddar cheese on top. Cut like a pizza and serve. Note: you can substitute or add green chile. As a side, I marinate chopped tomatoes and avocado in a mixture of olive oil and lemon juice. Very tasty and it all fits into the ketogenic diet!

There are lots of resources online and I’m checking them out. My arbitrary restrictions are tofu, eggplant and Portobello mushrooms. Sorry, but the texture of those foods makes me want to retch up every cookie I ever ate.

I wish I was one of those people who post photos of themselves to show the “before” and “after” of a weight loss plan, but I’m not. So, I’ll simply say I am beginning today – Thursday, August 30, 2018, at 153.4 pounds – on a mostly vegetarian quest to lose sensibly with the intent of being healthy, not skinny. I left skinny in the dust decades ago.

Here are five healthy body affirmations to keep me motivated. If you have some you would like to share, send them to me!

  • Nothing tastes as good and being healthy feels.
  • Healthy body, healthy spirit.
  • Saying no to carbs means saying yes to the dress.
  • I will eat to live, not live to eat.
  • Being active strengthens body, soul, mind and spirit.

Why am I doing this and sharing it with readers? Health, pure and simple. I can’t walk a block without breathing hard. I can’t climb stairs easily. There’s more, but you have better things to do than listen to me whine. I’m making a personal contract to make this work. Goal? Good health!

Lift a little prayer for me to stick with it. If you feel like joining me on this quest, please let me know about your progress and your struggles. Perhaps we can encourage each other.

Please like, comment and share.


5 Awesome Reasons to try

belly-body-clothes-diet-53528.jpegWhat is It’s not just another weight loss program; it’s a FREE weight loss program that emphasizes healthy lifestyle, above all else. It has fitness tools, nutrition and fitness tracking, support through online resources, and a broad array of fitness videos with instructions on how to safely do the exercises in your home.

The site’s promo copy points out countless activities you can do to get healthy and reach your goals. Among those activities are:

  • Lose weight
  • Live a healthy lifestyle even if you don’t want to lose weight
  • Guides to nutrition, fitness, and motivation
  • Health and wellness information about conditions, treatments, and health news
  • SparkPeople experts
  • Recipes

Awesome Reason #1: It’s FREE: This is not a hook to get you started on a 10-day free trial with a fee kicking in after that. It is 100 percent FREE. Every resource is available to anyone who signs up. That isn’t to say there aren’t items available for sale, including a fee for direct coaching if you think you need it. You aren’t required to buy anything, however. Sign on and have immediate access to tools you can use.

Awesome Reason #2: You have access to SparkPeople newsletters with links to helpful articles. Do you want to know more about living a healthy lifestyle, weight loss, exercise, diabetes, high blood pressure, allergies, and other wellness concerns? SparkPeople will have articles to answer your questions.

Awesome Reason #3: Goal setting. You can’t know where you’ve been until you know where you are going. How many times have you said, “I’m going to lose 25 pounds by my cousin’s wedding, or my class reunion (or whatever special date or time is out there).” That kind of thinking leads to yo-yo dieting. SparkPeople’s strategy is to spark participants to embed lifelong changes designed to ensure good health. By setting realistic goals. Set yourself up for success.

Awesome Reason #4: How many times have you read that keeping a “food journal” or an “exercise journal” is crucial to weight loss success? Have you tried that? Writing down every single thing you eat throughout the day? Writing down your physical activity? I’ve tried. I just can’t do it. SparkPeople has trackers. All you need do is search for a food or activity, select the measure and add it to your tracker. Not everything is there, so you may need to add something now and then, but it is, for the most part, easy to do. (I say “for the most part,” because there is a learning curve, but you can do it.)

Awesome Reason #5: This site has terrific articles and videos about health related subjects. And I cannot overstate this – it is all FREE. Select from nutrition, fitness, motivation, health and wellness, weight loss, instant motivation, Spark recipes, and more. You will find multiple articles on the subjects of interest to you.

There is more to the site. Explore. See if it will work for you.

One thing I don’t like about the site is the very reason it is free; it is loaded with ads, and the pop-ups are annoying. But I reiterate the site is free to you. SparkPeople developers learned early on that if you have a good idea you can make “passive” money by offering something everyone wants, and then charging advertisers to offset the cost of delivering that content to readers.

SparkPeople hit the mother lode. It gets more than 100 million page views a month and has more than 15 million registered users. That’s a lot of potential buyers for advertisers. The ads are sometimes annoying, but not to the point of detracting from the mission of to provide tools for a healthy lifestyle, a service people want and are in need of… and it is FREE to the consumer. You can’t beat that.

You have the option of upgrading to premium ($4.99 a month), to avoid ads and receive additional benefits.

Note: I am not compensated in any way by SparkPeople.