4th Thursday Caregiver Support Group Meets This Week

Open to all caregivers. Meetings are held monthly at the Carver Center in Purcellville, VA

Address: 200 Willie Palmer Drive, Purcellville, VA

Time: 3:00 -4:00 PM

Sponsored by Alzheimer’s Organization.

Trained Facilitator

Caregiver Support Group: This group is designed to provide emotional, educational, and social support for caregivers in order to help participants develop coping methods and encourage caregivers to maintain their personal, physical and emotional health, as well as care for the person with dementia or other chronic illness. Serving teen to adult caregivers.

Please join us when you can.

For more information you may contact me directly via email. bcarducci@Comcast.net

 

Runny Eggs and Burnt Toast on Mother’s Day

 

burnt toast“Shhh! You’re going to wake her up. It’s supposed be a surprise,” the oldest of my four kids ordered her siblings in a supposed whisper that carried through the house and into my second floor bedroom. The aroma of burnt toast soon followed and I knew that I was about to be served breakfast in bed – again – by four very proud children. And again I was going to have to eat as much of it as I could while assuring them it was delicious.

Of course it wasn’t. The eggs were slimy and undercooked. Half the toast was nearly incinerated and the rest floated in orange juice that had slopped over the edge of the too full glass on the way from kitchen to Mom.  A homemade card teetered upright on the tray next to a small vase of dandelions and lilies of the valley harvested from the back yard.  The pride shining on their eager faces as I took each bite meant everything to me. Runny eggs seasoned with love become palatable if not tasty.

Now that my children are grown and they, or their wives, have experienced their own Mother’s Day feasts they realize how bad the food was and how precious those memories are.

If these thoughts are bittersweet for you on Sunday because your mother can no longer recall your fledgling efforts in the kitchen Mother’s Day you might be able to share some very special moments together anyway.

Show her a Mother’s Day card you received and spend some time going through pictures taken when you or your children were eager to cook for mom on her special day.

Seeing photos of her mother as a young woman may trigger happy memories of her childhood that you haven’t heard before.

If you have a special memory of something silly happened on a past Mother’s Day, share that with her for sure.

And if you can’t think of anything amusing because you are feeling too sad here is a link to a very cute Mother’s Day tribute posted on YouTube by Care.com

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nw6uwujZ0dA

 

 

 

 

 

 

Four of the Saddest Words Ever Spoken

She doesn’t remember me. I hope my children never have a reason to say them. But it could happen. If it does I hope they understand that even in my confused mind they are still a part of me. …

Source: Four of the Saddest Words Ever Spoken

Four of the Saddest Words Ever Spoken

She doesn’t remember me.

I hope my children never have a reason to say them. But it could happen. If it does I hope they understand that even in my confused mind they are still a part of me.

By the time I reach that point I will have lost much already.

My short term memory.

My rich vocabulary.

My love of long, hot showers.

My ability to cook.

My driver’s license or even how to find my way home if I did still have that privilege.

 

I pray I’ll still have the ability to read and understand the words my favorite authors have so painstakingly crafted. A world without books would be barren indeed for someone who loves to read as much as I do.

Alzheimer’s or some other form of dementia will have taken me somewhere back in time.

Perhaps I am reliving my days as a busy young mother and you, my darling daughter or son, are still in elementary school. You have not yet grown into the wonderful adult you will become.  I see you pink cheeked and out of breath after running up the steps, opening the screen door, and calling out, “Mom, I’m home. Guess what I got on my spelling test today!”

It may not seem like it in the moment but the memory of you is deeply implanted in my heart. The heart that beat so close to yours during the time I carried you. The heart that cried with you when you were hurt and rejoiced with you when you achieved a goal.

If the day comes when I look at you and ask, “Who are you?” I hope you will smile, give me your name, and tell me about your mother.

I love you. I pray you never forget that.

Dr. Phil: Please help support caregivers via the Dr. Phil Foundation. Caregivers are in desperate need of respite and you can help make it happen.

Caregiver Support Coming to Purcellville, VA

I’ve been away from the blog far longer than I planned. However, being a caregiver and all that entails is never far from my heart and mind.  One of the most important and meaningful things I’ve been doing while away from the keyboard is training to be a Caregiver Support Group Facilitator through Alz.org.

Here are the details of where and when this group will meet.

Caregiver Support Group, Purcellville, VA, 20132

When: Thu, April 28, 3pm – 4pm
Where: The Carver Center, 200 Willie Palmer Drive, Purcellville, VA, 20132 (map)
Description: Alzheimer’s Association Support Groups Alzheimer’s Association support groups provide a place for people with Alzheimer’s, their caregivers, family members, and/or friends to share valuable information, caregiving tips and concerns throughout the Alzheimer’s journey. Groups are facilitated by trained leaders and are ongoing, free and open to the community. Please call our 24/7 Helpline (800-272-3900) or contact the facilitator directly for more information and to confirm date and time. The Carver Center | 200 Willie Palmer Drive, Purcellville, VA, 20132 | Bobbi Carducci, bcarducci@comcast.net

For information on where to fond a support group near you go to: http://www.alz.org/nca/in_my_community_support.asp

If you are a support group facilitator I’d like to hear from you. Perhaps you’d be willing to share resources or tips on what your group finds useful. If you attend a support group I’d love to hear about how your group has helped you.

A Prayer For Caregivers

Lord Jesus, today, we pray for the caregivers in our community who sometimes feel isolated and forgotten, overwhelmed and anxious. Bless them, encourage them, strengthen them, and give peace to them in the midst of their burdens and pressures. Keep them close to Your heart, and enable us to give care to them when they need it most and expect it the least. In Your holy name, we pray. Amen.

 

 

A Call for Help For Caregivers

Below is a link to an article in the November/December Issue of Virginia Woman Magazine (Loudoun) titled A Caregiver Near You Needs Help.

Feel free to share the link as you see fit. Who knows, it may make a difference for someone.

http://issuu.com/virginiawomanmagazine/docs/loudounnovdec2015highresnobleeds/17?e=17049404/31065692

5 Halloween Tips for Caregivers

While turning off the outside lights may keep the doorbell from ringing; the chatter of children passing by on the sidewalks and the sound of increased traffic on the street coming at sundown can create a great deal of stress in someone with dementia.

Here are a few suggestions to help ease your loved one into the holiday:

Color a Halloween picture each day leading up to Halloween. http://www.coloring.ws/halloween.html – click on the link for downloadable coloring pages.

Share old photos of his children in costume and ask him to tell you stories about their trick or treat adventures.

Together make simple Halloween mask for the children or grandchildren and one for each of you.

paperplate mask 2

Put together some simple and fun Halloween treats:witch hat cookies

The Witch Hat Cookies

What you will need:

  • Keebler Elf Striped Cookies
  • Hershey’s Kisses
  • Vanilla Frosting
  • Orange Food Coloring

Recipe:

  1. Mix Vanilla Frosting with orange food coloring, put the frosting in a zip lock bag, and cut off the corner to make a piping bag.
  2. Flip over the Keebler Elf Cookie and apply a nickel sized portion of frosting.
  3. Press the Hershey’s Kiss down onto the frosting and cookie.
  4. Let harden, and enjoy!

People with dementia enjoy music from their past. Listen to some playful Halloween music and share memories of sock hops and parties they attended.

Purple People Eater

Monster Mash

Witch Doctor (Ooh Eeh Ooh Ah AAh Ting Tang Walla Walla Bing Bang)

Addams Family Theme Song

If none of this is possible for you, that’s okay. Give yourself a treat and refuse to feel guilty. You are faced with plenty to deal with every day.   Blessed Be.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Caregivers Are Strong Enough

strength Caregivers are among the strongest people you will ever know.   Caregivers Are Heroes. Help me raise awareness of how many caregivers there are and how fast their numbers are growing. Request your FREE Caregivers Are Heroes Wristband and wear it with pride.  All you have to do is send your name and complete mailing address to bcarducci@comcast.net. (Available in the U.S. only) No shipping costs or hidden fees apply.

Caregiver Bracelet

A Fearsome Intimacy

Caregiving Fearsome Intimacy

When we hold our infants in our arms we are filled with awe and hope for the future. We envision a life of promises fulfilled. We never picture them feeding us, holding our hand to keep us from falling, or changing our underthings. I couldn’t type the word diapers. The thought of losing my dignity to such a degree is truly fearsome. In my mind I hear the words, “It’s enough to scare the pants off me.” The irony makes me shudder and chuckle at the same time.

The caregiver and the cared for locked in a fearsome intimacy. I don’t know where the quote above came from. If I did I would give credit here. What I do know is those five simple words speak a devastating truth.

Dr. Phil caregivers need your help. Please use your influence and the Dr. Phil Foundation to provide grants for respite care for caregivers.

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