Calling all Family Caregivers!
I help family caregivers like me escape the overwhelm and learn to smile again.
That means surviving and thriving because you’re living life smiling from the heart. And that can be really tough to do so me days because caregiving is just plain hard!
I started this page because the number of family caregivers (unpaid caregivers) is increasing. And I want to get this message out to as many family caregivers as possible
I am a 24/7 family caregiver to my sister, Michelle, who has Alzheimer’s Disease and Down Syndrome. I also share care of our mother, Sylvia, with my brother. Mom is 93 and still lives on her own. YAY!
Maybe you have a special needs child, elderly parent, relative, or even a neighbor. If not now it is quite likely that you will, at some point in your life, be a caregiver or need care yourself. So, this blog is for you.
Caregiver friend, if you are anything like me, you need all the encouragement you can get. But not only that, you need practical tips to make your life just a little bit easier, too. Can you relate?
Here, on the Tip of The Day page, I share helpful tips, resources, and maybe even a healthy dose of laughter 🤣 (I know we can all use some laughter right now). You can also click here to find these tips over @myconcretedove, on Instagram.
Just remember this, it is through Christ that you can do all things because He makes you strong.
I can all things through Him who strengthens me. –Philippians 4:13 (NASB 1995)
💪Caregiving is hard but you can do this!
Practical Tips to Make Your Life Just a Little Bit Easier
Address Eating/Swallowing Challenges
January 25, 2022
Be aware of your loved one’s ability to certain kinds of food. My sister, Michelle, doesn’t like texture and no longer tolerates solid food. So, we’re trying different kinds of pureed foods.
Did you know that people with Alzheimer’s will eventually experience issues with eating and swallowing? It’s a good idea to get speech therapy involved early to find the proper diet for your loved one. This will also make your life easier.
Click here to watch the video and see Michelle’s reaction.
Don’t Be Afraid to Try Something New
January 27, 2022
👉When same-old-same-old isn’t working, it’s time to make a change. And there are many things on the market, so don’t be afraid to try something new to get your loved one to EAT. It could make both of your lives easier.
Many people with Alzheimer’s have what I’m calling food/eating challenges. And it is the family caregiver’s job to ensure our loved ones get the nutrition they need to remain otherwise healthy.
👉There are ways to make it easier. We recently ordered a few of Mom’s Meals (not an affiliate) from their pureed food menu. So far so good!
👉How can this help you:
-Less meal prep
-Less decision making about what to eat
-Fewer doctor’s visits because they are getting needed nutrition
-Loved one is less irritable
-Better digestion (for both of you 🙂)
👉Change can be good.
18 “Remember not the former things,
nor consider the things of old.
19 Behold, I am doing a new thing;
now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
I will make a way in the wilderness
and rivers in the desert. –Isaiah 43:18-19 (ESV)
Making Mealtime Clean-up Easy
February 22, 2022
Take easy steps to protect your furniture and make clean-up a breeze. Because sometimes life gets messy.
Believe it or not, this is a stress reliever.
✋️That’s because, by containing the mess before it happens, you stop worry before it starts.
I purchase PVC tablecloths and cut them to fit my needs because sometimes a shorter drape over the side of your table is safer. The tablecloth and food are less likely to be pulled off the table, accidentally. They don’t have a felt backing so they’re easy to trim. And They come in many different colors, patterns, and sizes.
Putting this simple precaution in place will make your life just a little bit easier.
👉 BONUS–Don’t throw away your worn table cloth. Instead, cut it up into EXTRA-EXTRA-LARGE placemats you can use for OH❗️so many things. This tip works for moms, crafters, teachers, caregivers, and artists too. Lots of possibilties.
I purchased the Sancua 100% Waterproof Tablecloths on Amazon.com.
**I am not affiliated with Amazon in any way.
Use Adult Bibs to Protect Clothes
March 1, 2022
Oh yeah! We are using bibs not, but we’re keeping it pretty, too.
“Color is a power which directly influences the soul.” ~Wassily Kandinsky
We can take practical steps in caregiving, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be colorful, soft, or attractive too.
I recently purchased three beautiful adult bibs to protect my sister, Michelle’s, clothes. I got three to have one for the rooms where she eats and one in the laundry.
We could effectively protect Michelle’s clothes with a towel or a trash bag, for that matter.
❓️But should we? Of course, not.
People with Downs, Alzheimer’s, or other disabilities appreciate color and soft textures like anyone else would. One way to determine what to purchase (bibs, clothes, sheets, wall color etc.) is to put yourself in your loved one’s shoes.
☹️ Would you like gray, rough, boring bibs (or anything else)? Probably not.
So why not keep it pretty? Well, I can’t think of one good reason.
These bibs are working out so well, that I may purchase a few more. But next time, since Michelle is about the size of a second grader, I’ll have to ask the maker to customize the neck opening to fit her better. So be sure not to make the same mistake. Measure your loved one’s neck and communicate with the maker.
👉Here’s where I purchased the beautiful and colorful adult bibs: https://www.etsy.com/shop/CreativeQuiltsAndEtc
They are very well made and John and Sharon at CreateQuiltsAndEtc, on Etsy, offer many different fabrics. Be sure to check them out. BTW-I am not affiliated in any way with Etsy or the bib maker, and won’t benefit by this plug 🙂