People of a “certain age” have already had to accept that there are many lifestyle changes that they must adapt to. Many have moved from fulltime employment to retirement, some have family members that have passed away, others have moved from the home that they lived in for years into a different setting.

There are also physical changes to get used to. Our senses still work, but not nearly as well as when we were younger.  Also, many other parts of our body and mind don’t work as well as before.  It would be nice if all of our new “normals” involved simply getting used to things like wearing glasses or hearing aids, but many involve such things as a walker or wheelchair, or dealing with serious medical conditions, or not being able to drive anymore, or any of a hundred other things that accompany getting older.

But along with the lifestyle and physical changes that we knew we would have to face, let’s also throw in a global pandemic! This is a curveball that no one expected. It’s been ages since we have been able to hug and spend time with family members and our social lives consist of virtual connections. Even more upsetting is the fact that we, or many people we know, have actually contracted the virus with varying outcomes.

I do think that the advantage that older adults have during these unusual times is that we are resilient. A definition that I found for resilience is “the ability to return to the original form after being bent, stretched or compressed.  It’s the ability to readily recover from ….adversity.” We have all been bent and stretched during the past 12 months. But our life experiences have taught us that we will get through the pandemic’s effects just like we have made it through many other of life’s challenges. We must try to accept whatever condition we find ourselves in. And this acceptance, along with a good attitude, will help us as we find our new normal.


Tips to Avoid Probate

Joining us at Buckham West on Tuesday, February 23 at 10:00 a.m. will be Thomas Kraus, an attorney from Southern MN Regional Legal Services (SMRLS), who will give a short talk on Tips to Avoid Probate. This will be a virtual presentation. If you are interested, we will be hosting a limited number of attendees to join us in our Anderson Conference Room for this interactive program. Safety protocol will be enforced; including masks, socially distanced seating and hand sanitation. We require pre-registration which can be done by calling 507-332-7357.


Additional Legal Help

Following the program, Mr. Kraus will also be available for one-on-one virtual meetings to discuss and begin the intake process on other legal situations that you might have. These individual appointments may be about various topics that affect the targeted audience of senior citizens, including:

  • Income Maintenance (Social Security and SSI, SNAP/Food Stamps);
  • Health Care (Medical Assistance and the like);
  • Long-Term Care (including Medical Assistance for Long-Term Care);
  • Housing (subsidized housing and landlord tenant).

In order to meet with a SMRLS staff member the following qualifications must be met.

  • You must be a low-income senior or person with disability.
  • Only civil legal matters will qualify, not criminal.
  • You must live in the southern MN SMRLS service area.

If you meet the criteria stated above, please call Buckham West at 507-332-7357 to make a private appointment.


About Southern MN Regional Legal Services:  SMRLS is non-profit organization which offers free legal help to low-income and senior citizen (60+) clients in a full range of civil matters. Their highly experienced and diverse staff is dedicated to helping people preserve and maintain life essentials—income, health, safety, and shelter. Serving 33 counties of southern Minnesota, they ensure equal access to justice, opportunity, and hope.


Coffee Shop’s Hours

We are happy to announce that along with our coffee shop being open five days a week, we have now expanded our hours as well.  This means that as of Monday, February 15th you can meet your friends Monday through Friday from 9-2pm. We will continue to monitor the safety and use of the occupants in our building and expand our offerings as we are able.


No Tax Prep this season

We have been informed by the AARP tax prep volunteers that Buckham West will not be hosting the free tax preparation service in 2021. Although this program has been available here for many years, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused AARP to discontinue their “in-person” tax preparation model. If you have questions, please check out their website For those looking for alternate tax preparation options we encourage people to ask their friends and family members for a referral.


Staying Warm

If you are still in need of a new sweater, scarf or gloves to help you get through this dreaded cold snap, why not make a stop at Fashions on Central during their Winter Clearance sale? Our store, located at 325 Central Ave, sells high quality, gently-used clothing for men and women at bargain prices with lots of inventory still available.

In compliance with our COVID safety plan, our store is now open on Saturdays and Tuesdays each week from 11am-5pm. Along with the opportunity to shop on those days, you are also welcome to bring in your donations during that time. We ask that you limit your donations to two bags at a time.

Remember that 100% of the proceeds from sales at Fashion on Central are used to support Buckham West. Stop in today and see what is new!



  • If you are a Rice County resident who is living independently and are looking for help with snow removal, you are encouraged to call Family Service Rochester at 507-287-2010. This is their main office line, with local services providers right here in Rice County. These services will be at a reduced cost and in some cases may even be free.
  • Curbside Pickup Meal- There is no noon meal served in Buckham West’s dining room until further notice. But you may order and pick up a meal instead. For more information please call the kitchen at 332-7680 or Buckham West at 332-7357. You can view the latest menu on the Buckham West website at and click the Senior Dining tab at the top.