September 2013

Quarterly newsletter of the National Federation of the Blind of New Mexico
(Published in March, June, September, and December)

Adelmo Vigil, President
E-mail: Avigil74@gmail.com
(575) 921-5422

James Babb, Editor
E-mail: jim.babb@samobile.net
(505) 792-9777

Tonia Trapp, Assistant Editor
E-mail: Tonialeigh513@earthlink.net
(505) 856-5346






The National Federation of the Blind of New Mexico (NFBNM) is a 501 (c) 3 consumer organization comprised of blind and sighted people committed to changing what it means to be blind. Though blindness is still all too often a tragedy to those who face it, we know from our own personal experience that with training and opportunity, it can be reduced to the level of a physical nuisance. We work to see that blind people receive services and training to which they are entitled and that parents of blind children receive the advice and support they need to help their youngsters grow up to be happy, productive adults. We believe that first-class citizenship means that people have both rights and responsibilities, and we are determined to see that blind people become first-class citizens of these United States, enjoying their rights and fulfilling their responsibilities. The most serious problems we face have less to do with our lack of vision than with discrimination based on the public’s ignorance and misinformation about blindness. Join us in educating New Mexicans about the abilities and aspirations of New Mexico’s blind citizens.
(Adapted from NFB of Ohio newsletter.)


By Jim Babb

This September issue of Que Pasa marks my 10th year as editor; I introduced myself in the September 1, 2003 issue. On August 5, 2003, NFB of NM President Arthur Schreiber appointed me as editor of the New Mexico NFB affiliate newsletter called Que Pasa. He mentioned that the newsletter had not been published for quite some time. Although I had never seen myself as an editor, I had published a newsletter called AEROGRAM which stands for Association of Education and Rehabilitation Ohio. I was also President of that organization for many years. While in Ohio I was a member of many blind organizations as well as a member of a counseling organization.

Well, 10 years and 40 Que Pasa issues later, here we are, a great organization doing things to change what it means to be blind. Thanks to all you great folks that have contributed to the success of this newsletter which is, by the way, one of about 20 that are still alive and being published by an affiliate.

One might ask the question, “Are organizational newsletters a dying breed like that of commercial newspapers? Are the tweeters and social networks taking the place of same?”

I also want to thank my wife Mary for assisting me with grammar and spelling and organizing things; she has now retired from those duties. Tonia Trapp has now taken over those chores, and she also reads this newsletter on New Mexico Newsline.

If anyone would like to become Que Pasa editor, please let me and Adelmo Vigil know. I can't do this forever, and I'm willing to assist, help, coach, etc.

Thanks so much,
Jim Babb


By Adelmo Vigil

Greetings Federation Family:

Those of us who attended the NFB national convention in Orlando this summer would agree that we had a great convention. As always, there were so many seminars that it was difficult to decide which ones to attend. The convention agenda was also very interesting and informative. We had 27 New Mexicans register for the convention this year. I want to thank Christine Hall for coordinating the schedule for coverage of the exhibit hall table. I also want to thank everyone that worked at the table and helped make it a success.

We continue to have our Chapter at Large meetings and have had great participation. I have had several calls about starting new chapters and reviving the Las Cruces chapter.

We successfully conducted our first BELL program in June. It was a great program, and I want to thank everyone who worked during those two weeks: it would not have been possible without your help.

The state affiliate sponsored a fundraiser on Saturday, August 3 where our own Art Schreiber spoke about his travels with the Beatles in 1964. We hope to bring this show to Las Cruces and Las Vegas in the near future.

The New Mexico State Fair Parade is coming up on Saturday, September 14. We are planning to have a float for those who cannot walk the full distance. We invite all NFB members from across the state to join us. We will send an email message with details as we get closer to the date of the parade. Also in the month of October, each chapter will be planning activities regarding the White Cane Law and Meet the Blind Month. The more visible we become to the public, the better we educate the public, family and friends about blindness.

We are looking at providing support to all NFB chapters and divisions by conducting conference call meetings at least every three months for all presidents and members of each board. We want to share what is working in your local chapter and how we can work together to make a stronger affiliate. I will email details regarding the first meeting in early September.

We call on members of each local chapter and division to help us move forward and grow as an affiliate. We are changing what it means to be blind for children, youth and adults of all ages in New Mexico.


By Greg Trapp, J.D.

The NFB national convention is always the scene of memorable events. The 2013 Orlando convention was no exception. As is usually the case, the highlight of the convention was the banquet. This year’s banquet brought a special surprise for Art Schreiber and the New Mexico delegation. The surprise came when Dr. Maurer presented the 2013 TenBroek award to Art Schreiber. The TenBroek award is named after Jacobus TenBroek, the first President of the National Federation of the Blind, and is the Federation’s highest award.

Art has done many things to merit the award, including lending his considerable talent to the National Federation of the Blind whenever called upon by its national leadership. Art is currently President Emeritus of the National Federation of the Blind of New Mexico, Vice President of the Senior Division of the National Federation of the Blind, and Chairman of the New Mexico Commission for the Blind. Art is also a former President of the National Federation of the Blind of New Mexico, a former Executive Director of the Commission for the Blind, and the original Chairman of the Commission for the Blind.

Indeed, one of Art’s most enduring accomplishments is the New Mexico Commission for the Blind. Art was the spark that gave momentum to the 1986 creation of the Commission. After the Commission was created, the Governor called upon Art to be its first Chairman. One of Art’s first actions was to hire a young Fred Schroeder as the Commission’s new Director. Under his leadership, the Commission survived its early challenges, and went on to become a guiding example to other states. The Commission also helped to develop many leaders in the National Federation of the Blind, including people such as Fred Schroeder, Joe Cordova, Adelmo Vigil, Carlos Servan, Christine Boon, Dick Davis, and Eddie Bell.

The recognition given to Art is well-deserved, and we can count on Art to continue to make a difference for persons who are blind and visually impaired in the years to come.


By Pat Munson

Every now and then, the National Federation of the Blind honors one of its members with the distinguished TenBroek Award. The award is presented to someone who has demonstrated outstanding service to and for the blind. This award is given infrequently.

This year, the awards committee was unanimous in its choice to honor Art Schreiber with the TenBroek Award. When Art Schreiber’s name was announced, we were delighted, and not at all surprised. As we all know, when Art is a part of an organization, he does an outstanding job. Congratulations Art! You have forwarded our work in changing what it means to be blind.


By Pat Munson

A number of us journeyed to Orlando, FL with great anticipation of the 73rd annual NFB convention. The agenda was crammed with meetings and gatherings of many kinds.

The hotel lobby loomed vast as we entered the front door. On the ground floor were check-in areas, two restaurants, grab-and-go bars with food, and a deli and coffee bar. Also, the football-length convention meeting room was there. If NFB’ers do not care for walking, they were in the wrong place.

On the second level were most of the smaller meeting rooms and the Convention Center, a short walk of ten miles, where the exhibit hall was located. Since it rained most days, venturing across the outdoor covered walkway was quite a shock to us from New Mexico. Also, we were entertained by very loud claps of thunder.

Monday morning July 1, the meetings began. All day there were activities for parents and blind children. Throughout the day, techie groups met to discuss the latest and greatest of whatever.

Since I’m old, I attended a fantastic seminar for seniors. Some of our NFB long-time members bounced our philosophy around, which made for a very interesting event.

Tuesday started with registration and the opening of the exhibit hall. New Mexico had a table where we sold chili-flavored nuts and coffee. By the way, we did sell all the nuts. The hall was vast, giving us more space to walk around to all the tables, but all that took a lot of energy. No weight gain at this convention!

The evening included the New Mexico caucus. President Adelmo Vigil welcomed us all and gave out exhibit hall table assignments.

Wednesday morning many of us attended the NFB Board Meeting. The usual business was conducted, and all the scholarship winners were introduced.

The convention general sessions took place from Thursday to Saturday. This year there was much time devoted to technology, and fair wages for blind workers. There were some unusual presentations on new topics this year. We heard from one of our members who is a funeral director and embalmer; she is most likely the first blind person in that field. Also, we heard from a panel whose members discussed a number of physical activities for blind persons: this included everything from football to yoga, hiking, and dance.

This year’s banquet was a very exciting one for those of us from New Mexico. Toward the end of the banquet, an announcement was made that the highest award the NFB gives, the TenBroek Award, would be presented this year. When the winner was asked to step forward, we received a wonderful surprise: Art Schreiber made his way to the stage when his name was called. He graciously thanked the Federation for the help it has given him since his blindness. But, he in turn has endlessly given back to the blind of this nation. Great job, Art!

This convention was busy for all of us, and I believe we all learned a great deal about blindness, what it is, and what it is not. We met old friends and made new ones.

Now we are back at home, ready to broaden our work as to what it means to be blind. We look forward to the next NFB convention in 2014.


By Pat Munson

The NFB Seniors Division (NFBSD) hosted a special seminar this year at the NFB national convention, which was separate from the regular meeting. At the seminar, a number of us suggested how valuable the free conference phone line is: we can connect with NFB senior division members throughout the country. We had a sign-up list for those interested.

We were informed that New Jersey hosted a possibilities fair as part of their state convention. Ruth Segar, NFBSD President, was the keynote speaker. The fair ran about three hours in the morning of the first day of the convention. All agreed that having the fair in the morning is the best time. One of the topics at the fair was a discussion about not letting family and friends buy techie items for the blind senior. Usually, these items just sit in a drawer because the senior never learns how to use them.

We also heard from Hadley School for the Blind, which has many courses for at-home study for seniors. A senior can work at their own pace and can complete the lessons without assistance.

We learned that BISM in Baltimore has a couple of videos describing how seniors manage aspects of their blindness. There seem to be similar videos available from other states; these can be very helpful for the newly blind senior and their family, and the videos are available without charge.

It was suggested that blind seniors might want to take on a project for Meet the Blind Month. One idea involved taking NFB literature to eye doctors’ offices, to other doctors’ offices and hospitals so more folks learn where to turn when someone goes blind.

All agreed that the special seminar was very helpful, and we would like to have another seminar at next year’s NFB convention. The format was informal, so many of us had a chance for input.

Two days later, NFBSD had its usual meeting which commenced with our auction. This year we had everything from Art’s fantastic wines to handmade blankets, fudge and brownies. There were too many items to name, but we did raise a pile of money with this fundraiser.

We started the meeting with a discussion about self defense for seniors and not carrying stealable items such as purses.

All methods of reading medicine bottles were discussed. Script Talk seems very popular; there are pharmacies that will mail meds to blind persons, but for emergency meds this does not work. Items like the Pen Friend, a device with which one can record and then play back the data, is a suggested substitute.

Art Schreiber was a panel member discussing older persons and exercise. He said at 85 he did a half marathon, and he daily uses exercise equipment at a gym. Other panel members also enjoy going to public gyms; they exercise and have made many new friends and enjoy chatting with others.

As you can see, NFB seniors are on the move and are most definitely changing what it means to be blind. We do our best to meet and teach others losing vision later in life.


By Greg Trapp, J.D.

Jim Babb Appointed to Commission Board
The New Mexico Commission for the Blind is governed by a board comprised of three members. Each member is appointed by the Governor, and confirmed by the state senate. Since its inception in 1986, there have only been 13 persons who have been appointed to serve on the Commission board. Jim Babb now joins that select group, having been just appointed by Governor Susana Martinez. He will be only the 14th person to be named to the position of Commissioner of the Commission for the Blind. Mr. Babb will join a board that includes Dallas Allen and Art Schreiber.

Curtis Chong Hired by Commission
Curtis Chong has been hired as the Coordinator of Independent Living Technologies for the Commission for the Blind. Mr. Chong has been assigned to the Skills Center, where he will be working to help the Commission to better meet the assistive technology needs of independent living consumers, and especially blind seniors. This is a critical and growing area because technology is becoming an indispensable and ubiquitous part of our society. Mr. Chong is very well known to members of the National Federation of the Blind. He served as Director of Technology for the National Federation of the Blind from 1997 to 2002, and he has served as President of the National Federation of the Blind in Computer Science since 1984. Prior to joining the Commission, he was Program Administrator for Field Operations and Access Technology at the Iowa Commission for the Blind. Mr. Chong has served on many important advisory bodies, including the Electronic Information and Technology Access Advisory Committee of the U.S. Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board, the Microsoft Accessibility Advisory Council, the National File Format Panel, and America Online's Accessibility Advisory Committee. Mr. Chong is an outstanding addition to the Commission. Better still, he is a package deal, coming with his wife Peggy. We are very fortunate to have Peggy and Curtis in New Mexico.


By Curtis Chong

In early June of this year, my wife, Peggy, and I moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico so that I could accept a job with the New Mexico Commission for the Blind. Let me start out by saying that both of us are absolutely thrilled to be here.

Peggy and I are both long-time Federationists. We joined the Federation when we were teenagers; I joined the Federation in 1969 (I attended my first national convention in 1971), and Peggy joined the Federation in 1973 (she attended her first national convention in 1976). We spent more than two decades in Minnesota, first working with our Federation colleagues to try to reform the Minneapolis Society for the Blind and later helping to create and grow Blindness: Learning in New Dimensions (BLIND, Inc.), an NFB training center. When, during the 1980 national convention, we marched on the Minneapolis Society for the Blind, Peggy and I were there. When, in the mid 1980s, the National Federation of the Blind fought for the right of blind airline passengers to sit in the exit row, Peggy and I were there. We were proud at that time to be part of a group of blind people who created a video demonstrating conclusively that the blind were just as capable as anyone else of jumping out of an airplane using the emergency slides. When, in the early 1990s, blind Minnesotans won the right to be treated like everybody else at the ValleyFair amusement park, we were there. I was one of eight blind people who staged a protest at ValleyFair because the park did not want the blind to ride without someone sighted sitting next to them.

Over the years, Peggy and I have held a variety of leadership positions in the Federation--both locally and nationally. Peggy has served as a chapter president in both Minnesota and Iowa, and she has planned, organized, and implemented too many Federation activities to count. As for me, I have served in various capacities: state secretary, state treasurer, chapter president, and national division president. Today, I am fortunate to serve as the president of the National Federation of the Blind in Computer Science, a division devoted to the interests of blind computer programmers and other computer professionals.

In 1997, Peggy and I moved to Baltimore, Maryland where, for five years, I worked as Director of Technology for our national office. During that time, Peggy also worked at the National Center working to develop technology training programs for our Job Opportunities for the Blind (JOB) program and later serving as the national coordinator of America's Jobline and NFB-NEWSLINE®.

In 2002, Peggy and I moved to Iowa, where I accepted employment with the Iowa Department for the Blind, managing rehabilitation, independent living, and technology service delivery programs for that agency.

In her spare time, Peggy is an avid historian--particularly in the area of genealogical research. She wrote an article about Lillien Blanche Fearing, a woman who became a lawyer in the late 1800s. This was published in the Iowa Historical Journal.

In my spare time, I try to keep tabs on technological developments that are of importance to the blind. I frequently write articles for the Braille Monitor about technologies that I believe will be useful to the blind.

In moving to Albuquerque, Peggy and I were extremely fortunate to find a place that has very convenient public transportation. We can go just about anywhere on the bus, and for those places where bus service is not available or is inconvenient, we ride taxicabs. We are thrilled to be here, and we expect to continue our active involvement in the Federation.


By Nancy Burns

It has been written about the ancient poet Homer, that he was compensated for his blindness with the gift of poetry. Such reflections are made all too often about those of us who happen to be blind. Is it possible that Homer was a talented poet and just happened to be a blind guy?

Such attitudes and beliefs about blindness and vision loss have been handed down through the centuries. The disturbing factor is that even today too many of these misconceptions are still alive and well. For example, the sixth sense is an attribute often given to blind people. Much of society seems to believe that if a person is blind, this person's other senses are greatly improved. Of course, this is not the case. We simply learn to use our other senses more effectively.

Literature, television, and movies have, unfortunately, played a role in perpetuating many of these negative stereotypes. These industries want stories that will sell and consequently, reality is often missing. Granted, we live in a visually oriented world. Generally when people close their eyes and try to imagine how they might function as a blind person, they conclude that they could not. This is in fact, true, because blindness-related training (such as the use of Braille and mobility skills) accompanied by a positive attitude are essential for a blind person to live a successful and independent life. But it takes something else: it takes an open-mindedness from others. It also takes realistic expectations. The role of the parent of a blind child is critical. If low expectations exist, it is doubtful that this child will become a highly functioning adult. These expectations, or lack thereof, play a significant role in the attitudes towards people who happen to be blind.

Society has opted to perpetuate these inaccurate and damaging stereotypes about any person with a disability. Myriad commercials are cranked out portraying the beautiful, perfect person who wears the trendy designer clothing and brushes with the most popular toothpaste. What has happened to reality? Is there no room for individuality in this world? Since societal attitudes have created this distorted picture of reality, it is now society's responsibility to correct these false images and to promote a more accurate definition of a person who happens to be "different.”

An ongoing goal of the NFB has been, and is, to bring these very important issues to the world around us. Each member of this organization is an ambassador of the truth as we take our message to the public. These stereotypes have existed for centuries, and the harsh reality is that change cannot happen overnight. All of us, as blind or visually impaired people, bear the responsibility of assisting in this process of changing what it means to be blind.


By Larry Lorenzo

After the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) was passed in 1990, the task of educating society about both the letter and spirit of the law was taken on by numerous advocates. Title III of the ADA, which addresses places of public accommodations, is a good example. "Reasonable accommodations" were required in order to assure that people with disabilities had access to goods and services. After many years of advocacy efforts, one would think that the objective of awareness and education had been met. However, the truth is that advocacy and increasing awareness is an ongoing process.

Recently, a legally blind individual asked for my help in a case of denied access. These are the basics of the situation: the individual went to a doctor’s office for an appointment that had been made well in advance. The receptionist asked that he update some paperwork. When he told her he was legally blind and needed assistance, she told him to take the form with him, fill it out, and reschedule the appointment. Aside from causing inconvenience, the receptionist’s unreasonable request put this person in a real bind because he required a refill of medication. Consequently, this delay had potential medical implications. Understandably, he was beyond frustrated when he contacted me.

I prepared a letter detailing the specifics of Title III of the ADA. I suggested that a "reasonable accommodation" would have been that the receptionist or other staff member take a few minutes to help the individual update his information so he could keep his appointment. This letter was hand-delivered to the doctor's office with a personal, confidential notice on the envelope. Within two days the individual was asked to come in for an appointment. The doctor expressed concern over the situation and agreed to be more accommodating.

What concerns me is the frequency with which such events seem to be occurring. A quick survey of advocacy organizations indicated that this was not an isolated case. It is not acceptable for people with disabilities to be denied services because of clerical barriers. In an effort to be reasonable and understanding, we acknowledge the time pressure of clerical staff. What other options can be considered? Providing electronic copies of required forms is possible. Also, if time permits, sending such materials via traditional mail may be considered. Offering assistance in the office should always remain a consideration. Of course, any option offered should be appropriate for the individual and the situation.

These cases are typically addressed on an individual basis. A more effective approach may be to address a professional organization and promote awareness and education as a systems issue. This strategy is being considered at the time of the writing of this article.

Much progress has been made in changing what it means to be blind and increasing awareness of all disabilities. But let's not forget that years of myths and misconceptions won't change without ongoing effort. The Americans With Disabilities ACT is not an entitlement program: it is Civil Rights legislation. There is more work to be done before we can claim equality and enjoy the opportunities of first-class citizens.


By Pat Munson

Editor’s Note: It would be difficult to name everyone involved in the BELL Program, but Alexia Switzer, parent of Faith, never missed a beat during the entire two weeks. She worked as an assistant, drove the van, shopped, and simply never missed an opportunity to keep everything on the move. A million thanks, Alexia.

Our blind children are the future leaders of the National Federation of the Blind (NFB). Therefore, it is imperative that they learn what we have already achieved as an organization of blind people. One way we have of forwarding our plans is with the two-week program NFB has developed called the Braille Enrichment for Literacy and Learning (BELL) program. This program has been developed and run by blind teachers and assistants. Those involved teach Braille, cane travel and the positive philosophy of blindness. This means the blind can do what sighted folks do but use different methods and techniques.

The BELL program has been running in a number of states, but this was the first time it was implemented in New Mexico. Back in September of 2012, at a seminar, Daphne Mitchell volunteered to chair the committee to bring the program to life. I was a part of the committee and quickly realized we were taking on a daunting task. When I was a teacher, I showed up, taught, and went home.

This BELL program needed money to function, a place to house it, willing parents of blind children, and a teacher and assistants. Daphne Mitchell sent out grant applications, sought a classroom, found a certified teacher of blind children, mailed out fliers about the program, and took calls from willing parents with blind children. As the months passed and we got closer to the chosen date for the first day, Daphne never relented. She is well-schooled in NFB philosophy: she never faltered. She kept everything on track.

On June 10, 2013 the school doors opened, and the teacher ShaRon Dandy and her helpers were at the door to welcome the three wonderful students, Aleah, Faith and Stephen ages 4-6.

Braille, white cane use and NFB philosophy were a major part of the ten-day program. There was writing and Braille reading, instruction on cane use, and talk about blind folks and how we react to sighted persons with their many questions and comments.

The group took field trips to a children’s museum and a ride park. An employee from the zoo brought skins, animal teeth, bones, animal sounds and a live ferret to the classroom for the children to touch.

The students helped make lunch, and they prepared and baked cookies. I arrived too late one day to enjoy the baked goods. Even the crumbs were gone, my loss!

So, what did we all learn from this program? All of us—the blind children, parents, teachers and others--learned that working together, we are changing what it means to be blind. These blind children have the role models many of us lacked when we were blind children; this is proof that our positive work in the NFB is continuing to make a great difference for the young blind people who will one day be the movers and shakers in the NFB.


By Veronica Smith

Absolutely, positively, without a doubt, this was one of the best swimming parties the NFB has had in a long time! The Albuquerque area presidents, Alexia Switzer, Daphne Mitchell and Veronica Smith, were all present to watch the crowd pile into the Valley Pool. They came in 2 by 2 and 3 by 3, all carrying towels, floaters, goggles, and swimsuits of many colors! They came in wearing flip flops and sandals, with their hair in pony tails. Some came with snacks, some with drinks--and all came with the idea of having a good time!

Over 30 children found something to do with all that water. Some floated on their back, others swam laps, and still others jumped off the diving board! Faith Switzer was one of many who found a friend and played chase, jumped up and down, and squealed with delight just having a great time.

Some of the adults also jumped right in to enjoy themselves. Gary Stansbury didn’t hesitate and took full advantage of an open lane while his grandchildren swam here and there. Dona Orgeron also dove right in, as did Frances DeDios. Several adults sat in the patio area and enjoyed the activities from a safe distance, no splashing here. The patio was safe from the sun as big puffy clouds blocked it, but thankfully no rain or lightning ruined our fun!

Alltogether, over 60 people, including NFB members, their family members and their friends, had a great day!


By Veronica Smith

Since the founding of the West Mesa Chapter, we have been hosting a summer social fundraiser of some kind. This year, we decided to have a Bar-be-cue at ShaRon Dandy’s home.

We served hamburgers, hot dogs (both beef and turkey), macaroni salad, potato salad, baked beans and watermelon! The burgers and dogs were dressed in lettuce, tomatoes, onions, mustard, catsup, relish, mayonnaise or green chile. To quench their thirst, lemonade and iced tea were served.

For dessert, people could choose from chocolate cake, lemon cake, cupcakes or Skinny Cow ice cream sandwiches.

And let me tell you, we had a super fantastic time! Forty-four people called to say they were coming, and we served 52. All our friends were there: some came just to eat, others came to lend a helping hand. We all came together to have a great time.

Special thanks goes to Bryce and Frances who cooked our burgers and dogs, and to all of ShaRon’s friends who helped by bringing tables, chairs, macaroni salad, baked beans, and that wonderful salsa. We also want to give a great big thanks to the kitchen and wait-staff, because without them, our plates would have remained empty. Most of all, a huge thanks goes to ShaRon, who lent her home! We just couldn’t have had such a great fundraiser without all of you!


By Peggy Chong

I have been involved with the NFB-NEWSLINE program for many years now. At first, I thought it was a nice service, but not for me. Now, it is a regular part of my daily life. It gives me access to newspapers, such as the Albuquerque Journal that has helped me to learn a lot about our new home, as well as keeping up on the news in general. And one cannot forget the AP feed that tells me I have lost the lottery again. I am not a technical person; I use my basic home phone to read and use the NFB-NEWSLINE service. NFB-NEWSLINE changes over time as it is upgraded and new features are added, but these improvements never eliminate the access options that we have all grown accustomed to.

The Weather is the latest in our advances to the NFB-Newsline service—which is so much more than just access to newspapers. Later, I will touch on a few more great features of Newsline. But for today, I wish to highlight our new weather option, much more than just another app.

In July, we added the Weather app that can now tell me the flood warnings, storm alerts and the hourly temperature. I can get this weather information just using my basic home phone, as well as by using all of the other high-tech options.

For the first time, all NFB-Newsline subscribers have access to up-to-the-minute weather forecasts right from NFB-Newsline, both on the phone and through the NFB-Newsline Mobile App. We can access daily and full weekly weather forecasts from NFB-Newsline.

Just like the emergency weather alerts, the weather forecasts are provided to each subscriber based on their home zip code. Your address and zip code on your NFB-Newsline account must be up-to-date and current in order for you to receive the right weather forecasts and emergency weather alerts for your area.

In order to access the weather forecasts from the NFB-Newsline telephone service, select option 2 off the main menu, followed by option 1. To access the weather forecasts from the NFB-Newsline Mobile App, double tap publications at the top of your home screen from the NFB-Newsline app, and then double tap the publications options button at the bottom left corner of the next screen. From the dialogue box, select the New Mexico information channel, and then select the weather forecasts.

The weather forecast section will contain 11 articles, with each article containing different types of information. The first article has the information on current conditions, including temperature, wind-speed, real temperature feel, air quality and pollen indexes. The second article carries that day's full weather forecast, including time of sunrise and sunset, temperature fluctuations, humidity changes and rain fall throughout the day. The third article gives you the hourly forecast for that particular hour of the day with the conditions at that time. Articles four through nine carry weather forecasts for days two through seven.

Article ten contains information on weather indexes. These include the grass-growing, arthritis daytime and nighttime, asthma, beach-going, bike-riding, kite-flying and concert-going indexes, among others. The final article carries the astronomical forecasts on such things as sunrise and sunset, moonrise and moonset, the rising and setting of all the other visible planets, and the information on the waning and waxing phases of the moon.

All of this is available, and not just on the iPhone. I do not have a smart phone, and I do not need an app, just my NFB-NEWSLINE account. And it is all free.

If you have lost your ID number, have not signed up for NFB-NEWSLINE yet, or do not know how to get started, you can call the local NFB-NEWSLINE number, 505-841-8844.

If you have not been on NFB-NEWSLINE for a long time, you will be surprised with all of the additions to the service. Besides the daily weather, there is the Weather alert service that tells you right away, when calling in to NFB-NEWSLINE, that an alert has been issued for your area. Other features that are available include Target store ads, TV listings, Job listings and so much more. Did you know there are about 350 newspapers and about 40 magazines!!

At our national convention this past July, we also used NFB-NEWSLINE for our convention agenda. The menus and the prices were even on NFB-NEWSLINE. I knew what I wanted to order before I even got to the café. For those who are not braille readers, this was a great option for quickly accessing information at convention.

There is no telling what new options we will have in the next year or two, or what we will add to the service.


By Dona Orgeron, R.N., Diabetes Educator

Do you know your numbers?

The numbers you should know are: your Cholesterol, Triglycerides, HDL, LDL and A1c%.

Do not accept “your numbers are normal,” or “your tests came out OK,” or “your numbers look good.”

Ask for your numbers: after all, they ARE your numbers.

Keep the results, and the next time your blood is taken to check any of these numbers, you can begin to trend whether they are better or worse. You can address this with your Diabetes Educator who can explain each of these.


Healthy eating, exercise, and medications are the three parts to the triangle for a healthy diabetic. All three are necessary, not just one or two of these, or else the triangle is not complete.

Here’s to your health!



Better-Than-Fried Chicken Drumsticks
Submitted By Veronica Smith

Makeover Favorite: Crunch Time! Simply prep and marinate the chicken and forget about it for eight hours or so, until dinner time. This succulent chicken is just as quick as anything The Colonel fries up, and much better for you. -Robyn Webb, MS, LN

Ingredients: 8 skinless chicken drumsticks
1 ½ cups low-fat buttermilk
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. hot sauce
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups Panko bread crumbs (whole wheat, if available)

1. Place the drumsticks in a large resealable plastic bag or large bowl. Add the buttermilk, garlic, paprika, hot sauce, salt, and black pepper and seal the bag. Turn the bag to coat the drumsticks in the buttermilk mixture. Place the sealed bag or covered bowl in the refrigerator to marinate for at least 8 hours or overnight.

2. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil. Set a wire rack on top of the baking sheet. Coat the rack with nonstick cooking spray. (I use a Broiler pan.) Remove the drumsticks from the marinade and allow the excess liquid to drip off. Discard the marinade.

3. Roll the drumsticks in the Panko crumbs. Discard any unused crumbs. Set the drumsticks on the prepared rack. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through and the crumbs are golden brown.

Smart Swaps Shed the Skin: Removing the skin from drumsticks helps you trim unhealthy saturated fat and significant calories. Panko bread crumbs lend crunch.

Love It Tender: Buttermilk is my secret marinade ingredient. It helps you bake chicken that's moist, plump, and not stringy.

Savory Flavor: Instead of salty poultry seasoning, spice the chicken with paprika, garlic, black pepper, and just a hint of salt.

Per Serving Better-Than-Fried Chicken Drumsticks

Calories 240; Fat 5 g (Sat. Fat 1.4 g); Carbohydrate 17 g (Fiber 2 g, Sugars 2 g); Cholesterol 85 mg; Sodium 200 mg; Potassium 315 mg; Protein 29 g; Phosphorus 235 mg;

Exchanges: Starch 1, Lean Meat 4

Peanut Butter Parfait
Submitted by Veronica Smith

Entire recipe: 203 calories, 0.5g fat, 114mg sodium, 31g carbs, 2.5g fiber, 18g sugars, 19g protein -- PointsPlusR value 5*

Peanut butter with banana is a classic combo, and this is a new way to get a fix. Creamy, crunchy, peanut-buttery deliciousness!


Stir vanilla extract and sweetener into yogurt.

In a mid-sized glass, layer half of each ingredient: banana coins, yogurt, and cereal.

Repeat layering with remaining ingredients. Enjoy!


Note: I have also used regular plain fat-free yogurt for this recipe. The only thing is, you lose out on all that protein.



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September 14, 2013: State Fair Parade.
Please get to the assembly point before 7:00 AM. The assembly point is in the parking lot at Kohl's at the south end of Coronado Mall. The bus will leave this point at 7:00 AM and take us to the Fairgrounds to start the parade. At the end of the two-mile walk, the bus will return us to the Coronado Mall. Let's all go and show the crowd what blind folks can do.

October 12, 2013: West Mesa Chapter Meeting
10:00 AM to noon at 4700 Paradise Blvd. Come and have a great time with an up-and-coming NFB chapter.

October 19, 2013:
Albuquerque/West Mesa Chapters White Cane Banquet to be held at Garcia's Mexican Kitchen at 4917 4th St. NW from 6:00-9:00 PM.