[NFB-NM] Que Pasa November 2021 newsletter

nfbnewmexicosecretary at gmail.com nfbnewmexicosecretary at gmail.com
Sun Nov 21 01:43:41 UTC 2021

November 2021
Newsletter of the National Federation of the Blind of New Mexico, published
on www.nfbnm.org, on New Mexico Newsline, and on NFB Newsline.
Adelmo Vigil
President, NFB of New Mexico
E-mail: nfbnewmexicopresident at gmail.com
(575) 921-5422
Tonia Trapp, Editor
E-mail: nfbnewmexicosecretary at gmail.com
(505) 856-5346
To submit an article or recipe for possible inclusion in this newsletter,
please email it to nfbnewmexicosecretary at gmail.com. By submitting your
article or other material, you are agreeing to the following:
*You assert that your article does not violate any confidentiality,
copyright, or other laws, and that it is not intended to slander, defame, or
*The NFB of New Mexico (NFBNM) has the discretion to publish and distribute
the article either in whole or in part.
*NFBNM is authorized to edit the article for formatting, length and content.

*NFBNM reserves the right to not publish submissions for any reason.


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.) 


WHEREAS, New Mexico enacted the White Cane Law in 1967, becoming the first
state in the nation to adopt the model white cane law; and 
WHEREAS, The White Cane Law, 28-7-1 NMSA (1978), declares that it is the
policy of the State to encourage and enable persons who are blind or
visually impaired to participate fully in the social and economic life of
the state, and to engage in remunerative employment; and 
WHEREAS, The White Cane Law gives persons who are blind or visually impaired
the same rights as all citizens to the full and free use of the streets,
highways, sidewalks, walkways, public buildings, public facilities and other
public places; and 
WHEREAS, The White Cane Law gives persons who are blind or visually impaired
full and equal accommodations, advantages, facilities, and privileges of all
common carriers, airplanes, motor vehicles, railroad trains, motor buses,
streetcars, boats, any other public conveyances or modes of transportation,
hotels, lodging places, places of public accommodation, amusement or resort,
and any other places to which the general public is invited; and 
WHEREAS, The White Cane Law requires that drivers shall take all necessary
precautions to avoid injury to pedestrians who are using a white cane or a
guide dog; and 
WHEREAS, it is important for all New Mexicans to be aware of The White Cane
Law; to be aware that persons who are blind or visually impaired use the
white cane to travel on public streets, roads, and at places of public
accommodation; to be aware that persons with disabilities have much to offer
and that their energy, creativity, and hard work greatly strengthens our
state and our economy; and to recognize that the white cane is an instrument
of safety and independence for persons who are blind or visually impaired 
NOW THEREFORE, I, Michelle Lujan Grisham, Governor of the State of New
Mexico, do hereby proclaim October 15, 2021 as: 
"White Cane Safety Day" 
throughout the state of New Mexico. 
Attest: Maggie Toulouse Oliver, Secretary of State 
Done at the Executive Office this 1st day of September 2021. Witness my hand
and the Great Seal of the State of New Mexico. 
Michelle Lujan Grisham 
Governor OCR in progress. Please wait for additional content.


By Nathalie Martin
The San Juan Chapter of the National Federation of the Blind of New Mexico
is having a fundraiser. Enter the raffle to win a traditional handwoven
Navajo rug! It can’t get more authentic than this!!!
The rug measures approximately 22” by 24” and is made of 100% wool. Value
estimated at $500!! Tickets are only $5 each! Get yours now to get a chance
to win this rug. The raffle will be on December 15, just in time to receive
it as a Christmas present.
You can use PayPal to send your money at: 
The name of our account is San Juan Chapter National Federation of the
Blind. Please choose the option “Friends and Family” within PayPal to send
your money to us.
You can also send checks or money to:         
Nathalie Martin
1305 Sycamore St.
Farmington, NM 87401
Make sure to give us your name, address, and phone number so we can reach
you to tell you that you’re a winner!
Please contact Nathalie Martin if you have any questions at
<mailto:NFBSanJuanpresident at gmail.com> NFBSanJuanpresident at gmail.com
Here is a picture of the rug. It is a Chinle style geometric design in a
bright multicolored zigzag in gold, dark blue, maroon, light pink, bright
pink and black.



By Nancy Burns
The long café table seated approximately 15 family members. This was my
first introduction to many of Don’s relatives, as we were recently married.
The waitress began taking orders, and after each order she would ask “red or
green.” As a Californian, I had never heard this question asked while
ordering a meal. Fortunately, I was near the end of the table and had
observed that the majority of diners had responded green, so I followed the
trend. It turns out that green chili continues to be my favorite. 
Don and I had met during the convention of the National Federation of the
Blind (NFB) held in Dallas, Texas. At that time, I was working as a
vocational rehabilitation counselor in Southern California. Don was employed
by the Commission for the Blind in Alamogordo. He advised me of an opening
for an Independent Living Counselor position through the Commission, for
which I quickly applied and was accepted. 
After relocating to Alamogordo, I soon became quite comfortable wearing
western clothes and boots. Don’s family had told him that I would never stay
in New Mexico, as they believed me to be forever a California woman. At the
time of this writing, we are celebrating 28 years of marriage and I have
lived most of those years in New Mexico. It was easy to adapt to the
wonderful and tasty New Mexican food. I am able to handle a little heat, but
Don loves his food much hotter. 
I also love the Southwest culture, and it is reflected in my home
decorating. Interestingly enough, prior to meeting Don, my decorating taste
in my Burbank home was highlighted with bright Southwest colors. 
We have now lived in Albuquerque for nearly fifteen years. Together we have
explored Santa Fe, Taos, the Turquoise Trail, Old Town and many other
picturesque and fascinating locations around the state. All of these
locations were intriguing, but one of my favorite outings was two awesome
days spent in Pecos, located in Northern New Mexico in the Sangre De Cristo
Mountains. We shared a rustic cabin with three good friends. Don and I slept
in the upper level of the A-frame cabin where I continually forgot, and
bumped my head every morning as I stood up. The highlight for Don was a
fishing trip to Monastery Lake. All five of us pitched in with food
preparation. Don wrapped his fish in foil and cooked it over a barbecue.
Fortunately, he had caught five, as no one else experienced much fishing
luck. The rest of us provided side dishes, and we enjoyed a wonderful meal
along with amicable and fun conversation. 
During this same trip, our driver took us further up into the mountains.
Aspen trees had been described to me, but obviously, they are much too tall
for me to actually touch. Fortunately, there were tiny, baby Aspens, only a
foot or two tall, that I could touch. I now know the shape of those delicate
Aspen leaves.
Soon after moving to Albuquerque, we purchased a home on the northwest side.
One morning, as I stepped into the backyard, I heard the unmistakable sound
of a hot air balloon. I yelled to Don, and we both ran out to the front of
our house where the pilot was attempting to land. The pilot indicated that
he needed to land and could we grab the basket. Don and I, along with
several neighbors, helped the pilot to land in the middle of our street. I
told the pilot that I had always hoped for such an event, but he said that
had not been his intent. It was a fun and unforgettable experience to get up
close and personal with a hot air balloon. 
Even though Don grew up in New Mexico, he still enjoys exploring it with me.
There will more than likely be additional explorations in the Land of
Enchantment in our future.


By Pat Munson
The very first fundraiser in a year and a half was a car wash supporting the
Albuquerque Chapter. There were about twenty folks washing and drying cars
despite the heat. We passed out NFB literature and showed the sighted public
that the blind could greatly improve the appearance of their vehicles! 
A couple of weeks later the NFB of New Mexico hosted the same fundraiser. It
ran as smoothly as the first one and brought in more money in order to
forward our work. At this event, some kids were out there assisting with the
washing and drying. Great job everyone! 


By Nathalie Martin
The Senior Action Group Energy (SAGE) Division met this past August 25th for
their annual Convention Seminar. The seminar was divided into two parts.
In the first section, Veronica Smith, the president of the division, started
with welcoming the 33 people in attendance. She then introduced the Board of
Directors: Vice-President, Caroline Benavidez; Treasurer, Urja Lansing;
Secretary, Nathalie Martin; and Board Member, ShaRon Dandy. Urja Lansing
continued by presenting that evening’s topics and the presenters. The theme
for the evening was “How to do what we used to do and want to do with vision
Our first presenter was Peggy Hayes, who came to talk about how to continue
reading after blindness. She tells us all about the new HIMS Blaze ET she
just got: It is a device that resembles a Victor Stream with OCR reader and
can read audiobooks, play music, play the radio, store files, record,
identify colors, stand on a table to take pictures to do OCR, but does not
read canned goods or prescription bottles.
Our next presenter, Michael Hayes, who is a Certified Mobility Specialist,
came to talk to us about orientation and mobility. He gave us tips about how
to continue to travel even when blind. He talked about using the Structured
Discovery method in order to continue going places.
Caroline Benavidez might have been our last presenter, but she certainly was
not the least. Her subject was home and personal management, and she dove
into tips and tricks regarding accessible TV viewing at home. She talked
about the accessible equipment some companies offer; for example, Xfinity
has an accessible remote control with voice input and voice output. She also
told us which services have audio description, like Netflix, the Fire Stick,
and so on.
The last section of our meeting was focused on the business to be conducted.
Nathalie read the minutes from last year’s seminar. Then Urja read the
Treasurer’s Report. We then proceeded with the elections. It was announced
that everyone wants to stay in their positions except for ShaRon Dandy, who
is currently the board member. After conducting the elections, our new board
consisted of Veronica as the president, Caroline as the vice-president,
Nathalie as the secretary, and Urja for the position of treasurer. 
Veronica thanked ShaRon for her years of service on the SAGE board and went
on to perform the election for that position. Unlike the previous positions,
there were actually two nominations from the floor. Karen Carter and Sue
Garnanez were nominated. A vote was made and Sue was elected by acclamation.
At the very end of the seminar, Veronica reminded people that the SAGE
Division meets the 2nd Wednesday of every month. Come join us soon!


By Veronica Smith
The Senior Action Group Energy (SAGE) Division and Member at Large group has
really been rocking and rolling and grooving over the last few months. In
July we had a chit chat meeting where we all talked about what we did the
week of the 4th of July. Some of us zoomed into the meeting at the National
Federation of the Blind convention while others stayed in and watched the
world go by. Some members had cook-outs with family members and still others
went on vacation to see family members that they had not seen for over a
In August, Sue Garnanez spoke at our monthly SAGE and Member at Large
meeting. I know from the questions asked by our members that she kept them
interested. I know for a fact that she kept my attention. She has led a very
interesting and exciting life.
In September, Art Schreiber was our speaker, another dynamic individual who
captured his audience. When I asked him to speak, he laughed and told me he
was going to need more than the thirty minutes I usually offer. He told me
he was 94 and needed enough time to fit all those years in. After all was
said and done, he spoke to us for an hour, and let me tell you, he has a
fantastic memory for all those things he has done in his life.
We invited Jessica Bachicha for October and Jeff Blair for our November
meeting. Make sure and join us the second Wednesday of each month at 7:00
P.M. MT via Zoom.
If you want to tell your story, contact me and let me know. If you know
someone in our organization who wants to present to us, have them contact
me. Or if you just want to come and listen, you are always welcome. The
Senior Division says it is 55 and older, but our division here in New Mexico
has no age limit. If you are under 55, you are welcome to join us each
month. If you are over 55, you are welcome to join us each month. We’d love
to see you!


The National Federation of the Blind of New Mexico (NFBNM) held its 2021 
state convention via Zoom from August 25-28, 2021. Two evenings before the
opening were the Senior Action Group Energy, followed by the NFBNM Board of
Directors meeting the next evening.
Friday morning the resolutions committee met, chaired by Sherry Shirek and
Urja Lansing. That was followed by the Diversity committee gathering. Their
topic was reading labels on cans and the benefits of eating nutritious
"whole foods.”
After some lunchtime chat, President Adelmo Vigil gaveled the convention to
order. After some announcements, fifth-grader Jessica Johnson recited the
Pledge of Allegiance. Then the National Anthem was sung, followed by the NFB
Pledge, which was recited by James Miyagishima, Mesilla Valley Chapter. 
We then heard from Lieutenant Governor Howie Morales. We thanked him for all
his work in improving websites so they are accessible to the blind. 
Joe Orozco, Operations Coordinator, NFB of Virginia presented on
“Confronting Everyday Monsters and a Few Ways to Beat Them.” He is employed
by the FBI, and he told of his duties at this very interesting job. 
Tara Chavez, Chairperson of the Pre-Authorized Contribution (PAC) Plan
Committee, got the folks to donate almost one-hundred dollars more.
Next was the president's report from Adelmo Vigil, President, NFBNM. He said
how pleased he is with the progress we have made this past year. He hopes we
can meet for the next convention in March in person.
Terri Rupp, National Representative and President, NFB of Nevada gave the
report from our national office. She reminded us how well the NFB national
convention ran and how well the Federation is doing.
In “My Blindness, Myself” Jesse Shirek, First Vice President of the West
Mesa Chapter, told his story of blindness and how the Federation has helped
him live the life he wants. This was followed by the public meeting on the
Combined State Plan of the New Mexico Commission for the Blind.
That evening a social gathering was held on Zoom. Jesse and Sherry Shirek,
Member and Secretary, West Mesa Chapter invited us into their Zoom home!
Saturday morning got under way with “Amazing Tricks to Get the Most Out of
Your Technology for Beginners and Experienced Users” presented by Jesse
Shirek, Assistive Technology Supervisor, and Eric Gonzales and Jess
Rickards, Assistive Technology Specialists.
“Membership Building and Bonding” was an informal, unstructured gathering
that provided a great time to catch up with old friends and acquaintances,
and a great time to make new ones. There were productive discussions
concerning bringing in more students, parents of blind children, and blind
parents of sighted students.
In “From Lights Out to Life is On” Art Schreiber, President Emeritus, told
how he awoke blind one morning and how he learned to function as a capable
blind person. This was followed by the status report on the New Mexico
School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (NMSBVI) from Patricia Beecher,
In “Gender Pronouns: What’s in a Name” Jedi Moerke, President, White Sands
Chapter, gave us an update on the modern usage of pronouns in the very
confusing English language where rules are rather vague at best. This was
followed by the Status Report on the New Mexico Commission for the Blind
from Executive Director Greg Trapp.
Keynote speaker Terri Rupp, National Representative and President, NFB of
Nevada talked about wearing the correct shoes to tackle the job at hand. She
has a lot of energy so is a great addition to the NFB national board and to
the rest of us slow pokes!
The business meeting commenced as usual with resolutions, minutes, and the
Treasurer’s Report. Elections were held, and the following board members
were re-elected to serve for the next two years: Nathalie Martin,
Farmington; Urja Lansing, Albuquerque; and Peggy Hayes, Alamogordo.
We hope that by attending our convention, your expectations of yourself were
raised, so that blindness is no longer the characteristic that defines you
or your future, and that low expectations no longer stand between you and
your dreams. We want you to become empowered to live the life you want.


By Pat Munson
On Saturday evening, September 18, Sarah Villavicencio and company hosted a
shower for Tara and Chris Chavez’s second, still to arrive son. Do not
worry, the elder brother, six, was the highlight of the evening! He provided
the entertainment with his sticks and rocks while the adults ate dinner. It
was exciting for me to see a child playing with real, natural items instead
of store-bought toys. He also did not have an iPhone!
After a tasty dinner, folks enjoyed home-made cupcakes. Then Tara opened all
the gifts. Baby clothes are so cute these days. I remember when my sisters
were babies, all the clothing and blankets were white, and that was it.
The weather cooperated: with a big tree that provided shade until the hot
sun set, and a nice breeze, we were all very comfortable. It was nice to see
our NFB family having such an enjoyable event. We hope for many more in the




Serves: 5
Submitted by Veronica Smith
1 large boneless, skinless chicken breast
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 oz cream cheese or 1/4 cup
1 cup heavy cream (we use 1/2 cup, because we don’t like it too rich)
1 cup chicken broth
2 large carrots, peeled and sliced
1 garlic clove, minced
3 or more large handfuls fresh baby spinach 
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
Slice the chicken into strips. In a large skillet, cook chicken in 1
tablespoon canola oil on medium to high heat until done, about five minutes,
stirring constantly. Remove from pan. Reduce heat and add butter, crushed
red pepper, garlic and carrots. Stir constantly until carrots start to
soften, about five minutes. Add cream cheese and stir until it melts. Then
add the chicken broth and heavy cream. Continue stirring until liquid begins
to thicken. Add chicken back into pot and stir until all chicken is covered
with sauce. Add in spinach. Sprinkle parmesan over spinach. Cover pan and
let spinach wilt.
We always serve this dish over rice, but I’m sure it would be good over


Submitted by Nancy Burns
1 cup butter
1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup pumpkin
3 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon cloves
2 cups chocolate chips
Preheat oven to350 degrees. Beat butter and sugar until smooth. Add eggs and
vanilla. Add pumpkin and continue mixing.
In separate bowl, mix dry ingredients. Add to pumpkin mixture and mix
thoroughly. Blend in chocolate chips. Spoon mixture onto cookie sheet and
bake 15 to 20 minutes. Leave cookies on cookie sheet 2-3 minutes before
placing on rack.
Pour a cup of coffee and enjoy.


December 1, 2021: NFB national scholarship application period opens
December 1, 2021: Braille Readers Are Leaders contest begins
December 2, 2021: Presidential Release, 8:00 p.m. Eastern, CC and Spanish
translation available
February 7-10, 2022: Washington Seminar, Washington, DC
March 24-25, 2022: Jacobus tenBroek Disability Law Symposium, Baltimore, MD
July 5-10, 2022: National Convention, New Orleans, LA
Best wishes,
Tonia Trapp, secretary
National Federation of the Blind of New Mexico
nfbnewmexicosecretary at gmail.com
Live the life you want.
The National Federation of the Blind is a community of members and friends
who believe in the hopes and dreams of the nation’s blind. Every day we work
together to help blind people live the lives they want.
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