Caregiver Monday: Questions To Ask Before Your Parents Move In

The time may come when you need to move a parent or loved one in with you.  Talk with your spouse and children about the situation.  You need to take the feelings of anyone living with you into consideration.  Do you have room in your house?parents

The lady I sit with is in a basement apartment of her daughter’s house.  That works because she has her own personal space.  When her daughter is off she can go upstairs for a break.

Will the loved one be right there all the time?  Where will you go when you need to get away?  Will the loved one have their own room or space?  Remember s/he will also want/need their own space.

Other questions to ask may include: what safety precautions need to be made? how will this change our lives?  how will this affect our routines?  What does my spouse and children feel?

This isn’t a lighthearted decision to make.  You will need to talk with everyone involved about all aspects of this situation.  Don’t forget to pray about the best solution for you and your family.

Transitional Friday: 7 Lessons When Moving to a New Area






I recently had a friend that moved across country.   Making such a move is a huge undertaking.

While, she and her family were excited about the move, there were also adjustments that had to be taken into account.

  1. Learning the cultural differences—even in the United States various areas have different cultures, depending on if you are in the southeast, Northeast, southwest, North west or California coasts.moving boxes
  2. Learning the new area—this includes the roads, restaurants, stores, etc.
  3. Developing a new routine takes time
  4. Appreciating the difference in scenery—whether you go from the mountains to the beach or the plains to the big city, the scenery is different.  Take the time to appreciate the new scenery that is around.
  5. Finding a house of worship—sometimes we may have to visit several churches before finding the right fit and where we feel at home.
  6. Searching for a new house—searching for a house is stressful enough, but when taking in the difference in living expenses and finances in different parts of the country, this increases the stress.  Don’t rush the decision, take time to make sure this is the best decision for you and your family.
  7. Making new friends—this takes time, but whether you meet them at church, on the playground, at work, or join various organizations or societies, you can make new friends.

What have you learned when moving to a new area?

Caregiving Monday: 10 Christmas Ideas for Senior Adults

Don't dread the holidays
Don’t dread the holidays




Often it is difficult to know what to buy for senior adults.  They seem to have everything they need or want.  With Christmas approaching, we find ourselves asking, what can I purchase for Grandma, Grandpa, etc.

Several suggestions are:

  1. Mints—GG* loves peppermints and goes through a handful a day.  Each Christmas my brother gives her a huge box that last for the next year.
  2. Kleenex—senior adults go through a number of Kleenex.  Every time I prepare to do laundry for GG I have to go through all of her sleeves and pockets.
  3. Bath Items—body wash and other items for bath are often big hits.  I had one lady today request body wash.
  4. Everyday items—whether it is denture tablets, eye glass cleaner, muscle rub, toilet paper, dish soap, or other standard items, these need to be replaced on a regular basis.  Prepare a basket of all of your senior adults favorite items.  One year my sister wrapped up a case of toilet paper and gave that to GG.  If you’d seen GG’s face when she opened her present, you would think she’d just won the lottery.

    Brighten it up and make it special for Grandma
    Brighten it up and make it special for Grandma
  5. Robes and Slippers—senior adults often stay cold and enjoy warmer items of clothing.  Robes and slippers are great.
  6. Blankets—blankets are great in the winter {and often even the summer} for staying warm.
  7. Clothing—clothing needs to be replaced, as favorite items are worn out.  Whether your senior adult dresses up every day, is in casual wear or in a nightgown, new pieces of clothing are needed throughout the year.
  8. Calendars—this is a great way to keep track of the day and season.  Add pictures of the grandchildren or great-grandchildren and you have a hit in your hands.
  9. Collectibles—often senior adults have lifelong collections they have built up.   GG collects lighthouses and we enjoy spoiling her and adding to her collection.  However, make sure your senior adult is not currently downsizing.
  10. Family Related—items that are family related are often a great hit, especially if they include the grandchildren or great-grandchildren.  The options are endless but could include blankets, pillows, calendars, ornaments, family histories, framed pictures, etc.

What gifts do your  senior adult enjoy receiving  for Christmas?  Why?

*Name altered

Transitional Friday: Ways to Develop New Routines

Life is all about changes.  With change comes new routines.routines

When making new routines, the important thing is to discover what is the most important things that HAVE to be done in a day.  Some things that must be done are work, care for children, eat, exercise, etc.

In what ways is your spouse, children and important people in your life being put first?

Next, look at the parts of your life that can be cut or toned down. What things do you not enjoy doing any longer or has become a hassle? Are the children constantly being run to various lessons?   Can these lessons be cut in half?  Which volunteering options can be given up or put on hold?  Who can help you meet your needs? {This can include transportation, cooking, cleaning, etc.}

Next, what is left?  What do you enjoy doing? Is there a hobby you love?  Can you find an hour a week for that golf game, crafting project, etc.?

Developing new routines is all about setting priorities and pairing down!

How do you set new routines?

Caregiver Monday: 13 Ways to Assist a Caregiver

Do you have a friend, co-worker, neighbor, church member or acquaintance that is a caregiver?  Have you wondered how you can help?

  • Pray daily for home bound person and caregiver

    Prayer changes things
    Prayer changes things
  • Offer transportation to doctor appointments
  • Offer to pick up and take home for church
  • Make weekly phone calls
  • Send cards to say “thinking of you”
  • Visit regularly with treats {fruit basket, coffee, sweets, news, etc}
  • Read to the person or offer audiobooks {many libraries have these}
  • Offer to assist with letters or cards need to write
  • Prepare weekly meals
  • Offer to visit/sit and relieve caregiver
  • Volunteer to help with housework, handyman services, lawn care, etc.
  • Make sure there is a working telephone system in place
  • Take a copy of the bulletin and DVD of the service

Transitional Friday: 7 More Workplace Lessons

Last week, I discussed lessons from starting a new job.  A few more lessons, whether the position is new or you’ve been there for thirty years:give thanks2

  1. Be Thankful
  2. Remember no job is perfect
  3. Don’t be pulled into office gossip
  4. Do the very best job possible
  5. Keep unhappiness to yourself
  6. If it’s time to leave, search for another position before resigning
  7. Count your blessings

What lessons have you learned in the workplace?

Caregiver Monday: How to Help Deal with The Loss of Independence for Senior Adults

Giving up your independence is very difficult.  The person is finding that they are unable to do things they’ve been doing on losstheir own for most of their life.

  • Put yourself in their position and imagine how you would feel.
  • Try to be understanding
  • Do whatever possible to make the transition smooth
  • Show respect

Transitional Friday: 7 Ways Starting a New Job Affects Life

Recently I started a new job.  Starting a new job is a huge job

Some aspects that need to be taken into consideration:

  1. Learning the duties and responsibilities of a new position
  2. Learning the daily routine and duties
  3. Discovering the new environment of the workplace
  4. Meeting co-workers and making friends
  5. Discovering the co-workers that are toxic {ie. Gossip, etc.} and keeping a cordial space
  6. Discovering how the new routine fits into family and private life
  7. Budgeting finances

How has starting a new job affected your life?

Caregiving Monday: 5 Tips for the Professional Caregiver

compassion 2


Caregiving is challenging on its own, but even more so when the person is not your family.  You do not have the bond, connection and memories of the individual when they were younger and in the prime of their health.  However, you can develop a bond with the person and family over time.

When caregiving for a family there are so many things to be taken into consideration.  These factors usually boil down to the personality of each person involved.  This includes various family members, the caregiver and the person being cared for.

Caregivers can easily become frustrated when they do not agree with the family or feel their expertise is ignored by the family.  Some things to remember are:compassion

  • Be compassionate
  • Show respect
  • If your opinion is asked, share in a non-confrontational manner but remember the final decision is not yours
  • Honor decisions made, even if you don’t agree

Don’t tell family members they need to do such and such for their loved one