The Common Link

Since it’s Valentine’s Day, this week’s puzzle deals with common links. We’ve all heard of the six degrees of separation. Lucky for you, this puzzle isn’t that complicated. There are only two degrees of separation between the people/objects in this game. For example, the link between the words “marching” and “saw” is band. Click here to download the puzzle and see if you can identify the common link.

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The Benefits of Speech Therapy

I was diagnosed with a Stage 3 astrocytoma brain tumor three years ago. While many brain tumors can be surgically removed, my tumor is located in the cerebral cortext, which controls speech and reading comprehension, as well as short-term memory. My brain surgeon removed as little brain material as possible to confirm the diagnosis so that my brain would be the least compromised.

One thing that helped me recover from the effects of radiation is speech therapy. Speech therapy is about more than retrieving words. It includes strategies to retain information (secondary memory) and finding ways to communicate when you can’t remember words that make you stumble.  My speech therapist has challenged me to do at least one hour of mental exercises a day. I’m a nerd, so this is a great excuse to do crossword puzzles, wordsearches, and memory exercises. I’m such a word puzzle junky that I’ve decided to start writing my own puzzles and sharing them with others. I’ll be sharing puzzles on my blog. I you have as much fun as I do getting a neuro workout!

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