SPIRIT CareOregon Newsletter Fall/Winter 2011
Legislative Update

It is fascinating observing and participating in how the health care reform law, commonly referred to as the Affordable Care Act (ACA), is taking shape.  In stark contrast to 2009, much of the real implementation work is now being done at the federal agency and state level, and Oregon has been especially busy.  Oregon has been making national
Our Providers Rock!
Suzanne Cleland-Zamudio, MD Steven Vander Waal, MD Kenneth Rhee, MD

"Im in medicine to take care of my community. But my work at Sycamore Lane fills my soul."

The Giving Garden

Did you know that there are approximately 1,500 school age children in Washington County who are homeless?  It is hard to imagine that this could be happening in our own neighborhoods.

I began volunteering one Thanksgiving almost 10 years ago, and I will never forget how fulfilling it felt to make someone else’s Thanksgiving a little less lonely and a little less hungry for a few hours.

The whole experience was overwhelming. It was amazing that the people we served were so thankful and showed their appreciation regardless of their circumstances.  At the time, I felt like I couldn’t do enough and wished that I could do more. It was life changing for me. From that point on, I volunteered to serve meals whenever I could at the local men’s homeless shelter.
Read more ...

Rebecca's Salsa - First Prize!
Rebecca won the high honors last summer in our salsa fund raising contest for the National Brain Tumor Society in memory of Becky Crain.

I've never made it from a recipe - it’s based on my memory and the taste.

I use a small manual food processor.  I cut the onions and tomatoes into quarters and chop everything up in batches.  I remove the stems from the cilantro as well.  The amounts are all approximates and I make adjustments as needed.  I put the garlic through a garlic press instead of just dropping it in.  I find it helps the garlic flavor come through better.  The salt is the last thing to be added.
Read the recipe ...

What's it like running a farm?

Someone asked what it means to work full-time and still farm. It means two farm kids, two seasoned souls, happily married, both with a visceral response to and love of the land, animals, the people we serve. My Honey, who is "retired" does the farming full-time. I work things in and around as time and energy allows.

There’s a lot of harvesting in the evening, planting on the weekends, and seed starting in the mornings before work during the winter. It means the most devious thing my Honey and I do to each other is hide a new seed catalog until we’ve had the chance to read it first. It means taking plates, knife and forks to the tomato patch for a breakfast of tasting a new tomato variety. It meant that the first season we tolerated a living room with racks of shelves filled with plant starts until we’d sold enough to build something better.
Read more ...

In This Issue
Calendar of Events
Featured Articles
FYI For Your Information
Healthy Living
Service Anniversaries - We give our thanks ...
Volunteer Opportunities - Lend a hand ...
What's Cookin'?  Our staff share their favorite recipes.
S P I R I T  Archive - Read Past Issues

CareOregon MAC Celebrates One Year of Service

In July the CareOregon Member Advisory Council (MAC) celebrated its one year anniversary!  The celebration included a fun, team-building scavenger hunt around downtown Portland and a picnic on the waterfront.  

The MAC has many reasons to celebrate; in just one year they have accomplished a significant amount of work and generated great ideas for how CareOregon can improve our service to members. 

9th Floor Training Room
Gets a Facelift

Two years in the making, the training room is finally complete with new computers and new furniture.  A few years ago the trainers requested their teaching environment be the equivalent of what the end user experiences at their desks.

We thought, sure just add another monitor right?  Not so fast.

"We can barely see the screen now", management said. "We have to crane our necks around the desktop monitor.  If we add another monitor that just won’t work."

We looked at a lot of different furniture options because the wall and screen area in that room could not be changed without a build out.  What we came up with was new furniture that mimics the "Transformers".  Yes, the furniture actually transforms from a regular working surface to dual monitors with a flip of a switch. It's pretty cool.

A Friday Friendship Lunch

Last year Lorinda Koller and Sherri Hanni began a tradition of treating themselves to lunch each Friday to get better acquainted. Their Friday lunch dates turned in a cuilinary journey they did not expect. Sherri and Lorinda like to sample different downtown restaurants for Friday lunches. Please read their review of our local restaurant Le Cordon Bleu.

Le Cordon Bleu
600 SW 10th Ave
Lunch from 11-1 Tue-Thurs
Phone:  294-9770 - call ahead for reservation; small groups are best

“I was 32 when I started cooking; up until then, I just ate.”  Julia Child

is a newsletter for and by the employees of CareOregon.
The opinions expressed here are those of the individual contributors and not necessarily those of the company.