11 Things We Didn’t Know Last Week

News, discoveries and fun … 1. Cockroaches that survive harsh winters have invaded New York. (Learn more at U.S. News) 2. Saturn’s six-sided jet stream creates a stunning GIF. (Learn more at Engadget.com) 3. Singer Susan Boyle has Asperger’s Syndrome. (Learn more at AARP) 4. Kitty, the most popular name for female kittens from 2000 to 2006, has dropped behind Bella and Lucy. (Learn more at Vetstreet) 5. Not all species decline with age, a new survey finds. (Learn more at …

Density: The Scary Word

Americans love traveling to cities where there’s excitement on the streets and people-watching is rewarding and fun; places where it’s easy to take care of the needs of daily life, yet these same routines often bring pleasant surprises. We take photos and put them on the mantelpiece to preserve fond memories. These cities – as small as Winter Park, Fla.; Carmel-by-the-Sea, Calif.; Princeton, N.J.; Burlington, Vt.; Sitka, Alaska; and Charleston, S.C. – have much in common, but the glue that …

Is Marriage More Loving, or Boring, in Retirement?

Is marriage more boring or more fulfilling in retirement? (Hint: It’s better than you think.) Do spouses in blended families have different financial priorities for their own children than for their stepchildren? These were some of the questions that 5,415 people were asked in a study called “Family & Retirement: The Elephant in the Room.” Folks weighed in about their hopes and fears when they retire, whether they’d sacrifice their own financial security to help their adult children now, and …

Inevitable Loss: The Passage of Time

Who do you think is lonelier – adults in their mid to late 40s or adults age 70 and older? One might surmise that the older folks have experienced more loss of loved ones, diminished physical or mental abilities and/or are less active, which could lead to increased loneliness. Counter to what many people think, folks ages 45-49 are lonelier than those 70 years and older according to our research (43% vs. 25%, respectively). In fact, older people are happier …

Planning for Your Home’s Future

Marine Sgt. Adam Kisielewski has his pilot’s license, takes classes at a nearby college and loves to grill. Like most of us, Kisielewski considered his home his haven for safety and independence. When Kisielewksi lost his left arm (at the shoulder) and his right leg (below the knee) while deployed near Fallujah, Iraq, his desire for safety and independence intensified. But finding a path to meet those goals had become more challenging. Unlike Sgt. Kisielewski, most of us have the …

Are Your Streets Working for You?

America is changing politically, socially, demographically and economically – in ways that bode well for active transportation. Increasingly, we’re getting back to a nostalgic view of the street as providing the lifeblood and pulse of a neighborhood. It’s the place where shops and restaurants thrive on customer loyalty; where neighbors catch up and friends interact; where parents walk their kids to school. In essence, streets are reemerging as the fundamental context for placemaking, and it’s a change that comes just …