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Posts Tagged ‘scrapbook memories’

The Stratford (Retirement Home in High Point, NC) invited me to work with residents creating Valentine’s Day Cards. All materials were brought to the facility and just creativity was required.

Many beautiful cards were made for family members using colored papers, special cutting tools, ribbons, button, flowers and various stickers.

After leaving The Stratford, I learned a few craft making techniques from the residents. One of their staff members even made a card for her daughter.

The facility is just beautiful with its open atrium, bright light and many windows to view the geese meandering through their gardens.

The Stratford was a pleasure and we hope to craft again in the future making cards for the community, our soldiers and loved ones. It was even mentioned, the activity bus will bring residents to Just a Cloud Away, Inc. ™ Journals, Celebrate Mother Earth event April 16th for some outdoor fun.

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Memory Lane Portraits by Rhonda Lester is partnering with Just a Cloud Away, Inc.™ Journal, 50% of pet portrait session fees will be donated to the publication. The journal provides our community a platform to share stories of hope, healing, loss and memorials of a loved one, pregnancy or pet.

Memory Lane Portraits by Rhonda Lester creates beautiful artistic portraits of pets and their families. They welcome well-loved animals of all types and ages and love capturing the unique personality of each.

Rhonda is partnering with Just a Cloud Away, Inc. ™ Journal by donating 50% of all pet session fees booked through mentioning this ad. Rhonda has over 25 years experience in photography, and compassion for capturing the love between owner and companion.

Rhonda’s first pet session was for a dog with terminal cancer, named Chester. His owner, Sheila, wanted something special to remember her beautiful and beloved Chester, as he had been part of the family for so many years. When they arrived at the studio, Sheila wasn’t sure Chester would cooperate, as he usually disliked being photographed. Knowing this, and how important the portraits were, Rhonda was a little nervous about how the session was going to progress. She was used to being patient and playful with reluctant children to capture the best pictures, and decided to apply those same skills. Staying calm, Rhonda not only got Chester’s cooperation, but a variety of heart warming images­. The result was a priceless portrait of a very much-loved companion, Chester……

“End of Life Photography” was provided for the pet owners of Monty, adopted 15 years ago from a shelter. He is a very special part of the family, being the first of 7 dogs to enter the household.

It is said, 78% of owners consider pets a full-fledged part of the family and rightly so.

 View additional pictures

Consider having a professional portrait of your loyal 4-legged friends with Rhonda Lester (336.474.6867), she has a heart of gold and also a volunteer photographer for a national non-profit,  Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep, photographing deceased babies for bereaved parents. These photographs provide families with keepsakes to begin their healing journey.

Thank you for partnering with Just a Cloud Away, Inc. ™Journal and we appreciate all you do Rhonda.

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The Ted Williams story is ongoing and we hope he pulls through his personal challenges.  Most stories regarding the homeless are not  typical screenplay material, rather of a child or parent struggling with living life the best they know how.

 A local Greensboro, NC man was featured on the cover of Just a Cloud Away, Inc. Journal’s first issue in February 2010. Through this online link, Michele of Chosenfast website, who reports on our local homeless community, informed us of his accidental death. Larry’s obituary was sadly posted without a photograph.

GREENSBORO — A pedestrian crossing eastbound Interstate 40 on Tuesday night was struck by an SUV and later died at Moses Cone Hospital, according to a news release.

On Wednesday, police identified the man as Larry Wayne McCraw, 40, of Greensboro.

He was hit by a 2002 Ford Explorer just before 6 p.m. Tuesday. The car was driven by Gail Hill Roper, 58, of Whitsett. She was not injured.

Police are still investigating the crash.

The wreck stalled traffic on eastbound I-40 near the Martin Luther King Jr. Drive exit. All lanes have reopened.

When Mr. McCraw’s family posted his obituary, we signed his guest book in hopes of connecting with living family members. His cousin reached out to us in a matter of hours. She resides less than 2 miles from our office and was very appreciative of any pictures of her nephew. After meeting with her, we realized 3 generations of Larry’s family members graduated with ours. We had a connection far deeper than a weekly hand wave.

I saw Larry quite often and he was not camera-shy  and when presented with his photograph on the front cover, said, “Wow, I am famous”. Not to the extent of Ted Williams, but more humbly. The mere connection to Mr. Larry Wayne McCraw was his sweet and polite nature every time a care packet of food was given to him. These care packets are little acts of kindness when one is unsure of why they are there, what they are doing or will do with money given to them.

Rest in Peace Larry Wayne McCraw

Read how our local painter, William Mangum has helped the homeless community by utilizing his talents developing the  Honor Card Program.

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A Healthly Place has written a wonderful article regarding support for bereaved family members and friends.

Our local resource, Just a Cloud Away, Inc. ™ Journal believes strongly in the power of listening to those suffering great sadness after their losses. Stories are shared within the journal for our community to somewhat walk in their shoes while educating ourselves for similar experiences we may face in the future.

Just a Cloud Away, Inc. ™ Journal is funded by generous advertisers and those wanting to recognize a loved on within the journal, upon the  Quilt of Remembrance page. We are on our 12th month and have not profited and need your help, just to continue printing this resource.  We are more interested in reporting on those wanting to share their stories as part of their healing process, than solicit advertisers. Read past journals online.

How can I help an adult friend or family member deal with the death of a loved one?  Someone you know may be experiencing grief – perhaps the loss of a loved one, perhaps another type of loss – and you want to help. The fear of making things worse may encourage you to do nothing. Yet you do not wish to appear to be uncaring. Remember that it is better to try to do something, inadequate as you may feel, than to do nothing at all. Don’t attempt to sooth or stifle the emotions of the bereaved. Tears and anger are an important part of the healing process. Grief is not a sign of weakness. It is the result of a strong relationship and deserves the honor of strong emotion. When supporting someone in their grief the most important thing is to simply listen. Grief is a very confusing process, expressions of logic are lost on the griever. The question “tell me how you are feeling” followed by a patient and attentive ear will seem like a major blessing to the grief stricken. Be present, reveal your caring, listen. Your desire is to assist your friend down the path of healing. They will find their own way down that path, but they need a helping hand, an assurance that they are not entirely alone on their journey. It does not matter that you do not understand the details, your presence is enough. Risk a visit, it need not be long. The mourner may need time to be alone but will surely appreciate the effort you made to visit. Do some act of kindness. There are always ways to help. Run errands, answer the phone, prepare meals, mow the lawn, care for the children, shop for groceries, meet incoming planes or provide lodging for out of town relatives. The smallest good deed is better than the grandest good intention.
How can I deal with the death of a loved one?

Bereavement is a powerful, life-changing experience that most people find overwhelming the first time. Although grief is a natural process of human life, most of us are not inherently able to manage it alone. At the same time, others are often unable to provide aid or insight because of discomfort with the situation and the desire to avoid making things worse. The following passage explains how some of our “normal” assumptions about grief may make it more difficult to deal with.

Five Assumptions That May Complicate
  1. Life prepares us for loss.
  2. Family and friends will understand.
  3. The bereaved should be finished with their grief within one year or something is wrong.
  4. Along with the end of grief’s pain comes the end of the memories.
  5. The bereaved should grieve alone.Provided courtesy of Jack Redden, CCE, M.A., President; John Redden, M.S., Vice President, Cemetery-Mortuary Consultants Inc., Memphis, Tennessee  More is learned about loss through experience than through preparation. Living may not provide preparation for survival. Handling grief resulting from the death of a loved one is a process that takes hard work. The fortunate experience of a happy life may not have built a complete foundation for handling loss. Healing is built through perseverance, support and understanding. The bereaved need others: Find others who are empathetic. 
     
    How can I help an adult friend or family member deal with the death of a loved one?
     

     

     
     
     

    Someone you know may be experiencing grief – perhaps the loss of a loved one, perhaps another type of loss – and you want to help. The fear of making things worse may encourage you to do nothing. Yet you do not wish to appear to be uncaring. Remember that it is better to try to do something, inadequate as you may feel, than to do nothing at all. Don’t attempt to sooth or stifle the emotions of the griever. Tears and anger are an important part of the healing process. Grief is not a sign of weakness. It is the result of a strong relationship and deserves the honor of strong emotion. When supporting someone in their grief the most important thing is to simply listen. Grief is a very confusing process, expressions of logic are lost on the griever. The question “tell me how you are feeling” followed by a patient and attentive ear will seem like a major blessing to the grief stricken. Be present, reveal your caring, listen. Your desire is to assist your friend down the path of healing. They will find their own way down that path, but they need a helping hand, an assurance that they are not entirely alone on their journey. It does not matter that you do not understand the details, your presence is enough. Risk a visit, it need not be long. The mourner may need time to be alone but will surely appreciate the effort you made to visit. Do some act of kindness. There are always ways to help. Run errands, answer the phone, prepare meals, mow the lawn, care for the children, shop for groceries, meet incoming planes or provide lodging for out of town relatives. The smallest good deed is better than the grandest good intention.

    How can I deal with the death of a loved one?

     

     
     
     
     

    Bereavement is a powerful, life-changing experience that most people find overwhelming the first time. Although grief is a natural process of human life, most of us are not inherently able to manage it alone. At the same time, others are often unable to provide aid or insight because of discomfort with the situation and the desire to avoid making things worse. The following passage explains how some of our “normal” assumptions about grief may make it more difficult to deal with.

    Five Assumptions That May Complicate

     

    Life prepares us for loss.
    After the funeral service is over the bereaved may find themselves alone. They may feel as though they are going crazy, painfully uncertain in their world of thoughts and emotions. The bereaved begin to feel normal again when the experience is shared with others who have lost a loved one. Then, in reaching out, the focus of life becomes forward. The bereaved need others: Find others who are experienced.
      

    Provided courtesy of Jack Redden, CCE, M.A., President; John Redden, M.S., Vice President, Cemetery-Mortuary Consultants Inc., Memphis, Tennessee

     

     
     
     
     

     

    More is learned about loss through experience than through preparation. Living may not provide preparation for survival. Handling grief resulting from the death of a loved one is a process that takes hard work. The fortunate experience of a happy life may not have built a complete foundation for handling loss. Healing is built through perseverance, support and understanding. The bereaved need others: Find others who are empathetic.

    Family and friends will understand.

     

    If a spouse dies children lose a parent, a sibling loses a sibling, a parent loses a child and a friend loses a friend. Only one loses a spouse. Each response is different according to the relationship. Family and friends may not be capable of understanding each other thoroughly. Consider the story of Job’s grief in the Bible. Job’s wife did not understand his grief. His friends did their best work the first week when they just sat and did not speak. It was when they began to share their judgements of Job and his life that they complicated Job’s grief. Allowance must be made so that grief may be experienced and processed over time. The bereaved need others: Find others who are accepting.
     
     

    The bereaved should be finished with their grief within one year or something is wrong.

     

    During the first year the bereaved will experience one of everything for the first time alone: anniversaries, birthdays, occasions, etc. Therefore grief will last for at least one year. The cliche, “the healing hands of time,” does not go far enough to explain what must take place. The key to handling grief is in what work is done over time. It takes time and work to decide what to do and where to go with the new and changed life that is left behind. The bereaved need others: Find others who are patient.
     
     

    Along with the end of grief’s pain comes the end of the memories.

     

    At times, the bereaved may embrace the pain of grief believing it is all they have left. The lingering close bond to the deceased is sometimes thought to maintain the memories while, in fact, just the opposite is true. In learning to let go and live a new and changed life memories tend to come back more clearly. Growth and healing comes in learning to enjoy memories. The bereaved need others: Find new friends and interests.
     
     

    The bereaved should grieve alone.

     

     

After the funeral service is over the bereaved may find themselves alone. They may feel as though they are going crazy, painfully uncertain in their world of thoughts and emotions. The bereaved begin to feel normal again when the experience is shared with others who have lost a loved one. Then, in reaching out, the focus of life becomes forward. The bereaved need others: Find others who are experienced. At times, the bereaved may embrace the pain of grief believing it is all they have left. The lingering close bond to the deceased is sometimes thought to maintain the memories while, in fact, just the opposite is true. In learning to let go and live a new and changed life memories tend to come back more clearly. Growth and healing comes in learning to enjoy memories. The bereaved need others: Find new friends and interests. During the first year the bereaved will experience one of everything for the first time alone: anniversaries, birthdays, angelveraries, occasions, etc. Therefore grief will last for at least one year. The cliche, “the healing hands of time,” does not go far enough to explain what must take place. The key to handling grief is in what work is done over time. It takes time and work to decide what to do and where to go with the new and changed life that is left behind. The bereaved need others: Find others who are patient. If a spouse dies children lose a parent, a sibling loses a sibling, a parent loses a child and a friend loses a friend. Only one loses a spouse. Each response is different according to the relationship. Family and friends may not be capable of understanding each other thoroughly. Consider the story of Job’s grief in the Bible. Job’s wife did not understand his grief. His friends did their best work the first week when they just sat and did not speak. It was when they began to share their judgements of Job and his life that they complicated Job’s grief. Allowance must be made so that grief may be experienced and processed over time. The bereaved need others: Find others who are accepting.

 

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Join us for a free papercrafting workshop.

Supplies, papers and tools are provided free of charge. Please RSVP, diana@justacloudaway.com by January 19th (Wednesday). The monthly workshops can accomodate groups by relocating to your church or organization. Please email in advance to book the thrid Friday of the month.

Food will be provided at a cost of $10.00

Emerald Event Center

2000 East Wendover Ave

January 21st 2011

Friday Night 5-11PM

Just bring  pictures/photographs, cards you received last year, 2 dimensional papers, for example, journal entries, poems, seed packets, and newspaper clippings. Fabrics sentimental in meaning can also be incorporated into your scrapbooks, remembering a loved one. Personalize awareness ribbons. Bring anything to help tell your story within your books.

Let’s share ideas on how to recycle what we have, into beautiful works of art.

 

  

Come and enjoy a mom’s night out! No need to be an avid papercrafter!

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The end of Alzheimer’s disease starts here. June 11th, 2011

Join the Alzheimer’s Association Walk to End Alzheimer’s™ and unite in a movement to reclaim the future for millions. With more than 5 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s, and nearly 11 million more serving as caregivers, the time to act is now!

When you register for Walk to End Alzheimer’s, you’re joining an unstoppable force of thousands of people who are standing up to this devastating disease.

Our journey starts now. It’s easy to join our team:

Register. It takes just a few minutes online.

Start a team. Participating in Walk to End Alzheimer’s is even more fun with a group. Ask your co-workers, family and friends to walk as a team. You’ll be amazed at how many people want to help.

Fundraise. Every Walk to End Alzheimer’s participant is asked to raise money for the fight against Alzheimer’s. Alzheimer’s Association staff are ready to support you every step of the way with tips, tools and advice.
 
Get Creative. Raise money with our online tools, hold a fundraising event or ask for a donation when you’re face-to-face.
 
Walk! Walk to End Alzheimer’s is a unique experience. See the difference you can make as we walk to change the course of Alzheimer’s together.

Walk to End Alzheimer’s is the nation’s largest event to raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer care, support and research. Since 1989, this all age, all-ability walk has mobilized millions to join the fight against Alzheimer’s disease, raising more than $347 million for the cause. Events are held annually in the fall in nearly 600 communities nationwide.

All Walk to End Alzheimer’s donations benefit the Alzheimer’s Association, the leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer care, support and research. The mission of the Alzheimer’s Association is to eliminate Alzheimer’s disease through the advancement of research; to provide and enhance care and support for all affected; and to reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health.

North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University has a two-year research study and needs your help, click here

Suggested foods may reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s Disease

Just a Cloud Away, Inc. ™Journal

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 Alzheimer’s Disease is on the rise with someone being diagnosed every 70 seconds. Families are choosing to keep loved ones at home, hiring in home care agencies to help or

choosing a reputable facility specializing in Alzheimer Care.

One of the top Alzheimer Care facilities in the Buffalo, NY area is Harris Hill Nursing Facility, not because of one of my family members resides here, but the various activities, parties and projects offered.

For Alzheimer patients who are aware of their surroundings and have the desire to feel needed, activities are crucial on a daily basis.

Activities range from tactile (papercrafting, repetitive projects), audio (singing, listening to story-telling or music), physical (gardening or house keeping). Depending on the patients level of function, there is an activity for them, even if for only a few minutes per day.

 

When I visit Harris Hill, one particular woman with Alzheimer’s Disease is always carrying her baby doll in her arms being so attentive with such love in her eyes.

 

The parties and events are long processes with staff moving very slow. It is not the destination it is the journey. High strung people like myself have to slow down and enjoy the talk, dance and smiles of the residents who think they have known you all of their lives.

 

Find out what kind of activities are offered when you are selecting your loved ones new home. The disease may bring out new personality traits and hidden talents, which are just a moment away of being revealed to you.

Alzheimer’s Disease facilities in the Piedmont Triad Area can schedule gardening activities with Diana Digs Dirt

of papercrafting projects with Just a Cloud Away, Inc. ™Journal

We are looking for a monthly papercrafting location in the Greensboro, NC for a workshop to meet on the 3rd Friday of the month from 5-11PM. This would be added exposure for your facility where workshops will be photographed and posted on Just a Cloud Away, Inc. ™ Journal’s Blog. The workshops will reach out to community members wanting to learn how to compose keepsakes of loved ones, pets or baby’s gone too soon in the form of journal books, scrapbooks, collages, cards and more.

Email- Diana (@) justacloudaway.com to schedule activities

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Crafting and Gardening are activities offered by

Just a Cloud Away, Inc.™ Journal and Diana Digs Dirt, engaging Alzheimer Patients in projects with minimal stress and optimal enjoyment for residents, caregivers and staff, including facilities and in private homes.

Often it’s hard to know just how to react and interact with Alzheimer’s patients. With a little knowledge, consistent practice, and lots of patience,  daily life for the patient and caregiver can improve. Just remember to keep activities simple, to provide a routine, and to individualize the activities according to the patient’s interest and abilities. You and the Alzheimer’s patient will be rewarded for your efforts.

Some of the recreational activities for Alzheimer’s patients are craft ideas, like scrapbooking, sorting out the photographs, making a collage, writing notes to relatives and posting notes. While trying out some craft ideas with dementia patients, make sure you choose an activity that is less complex. For instance, if you are making a collage, let a dementia patient only paste in a guided sequence. If you make them cut the paper pieces, draw and add more activities, as they are likely to get frustrated and express a long-lasting bout of anger. Thus, be very patient and avoid any complications, while working with such patients

Gardening is another simple, effective and meaningful activity.

Gardens can help patients feel connected to nature and to life, whether they can actively participate in the preparation and cultivation of the garden or simply be observers of the wonders of nature.  Exposure to nature’s sights, sounds, smells and physical sensations can be noticeably beneficial to a patient’s spiritual, psychological, social and physical health.  The idea is to engage the senses and provide a connection to the creation and growth of living things, mentioned by Sandra Webber.

Simple crafting in a Malaysia  Alzheimer facility creates an atmosphere with a greater sense of peace for residents, caregivers and staff.

Please contact Diana (@) justacloudaway.com for activity scheduling. All materials, supplies and tools are provided. Click, to view a past workshop.

We are happy to photograph the workshops at your facility, for inclusion on the blog of:

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Alzheimer’s Disease is the most common form of demetia in people 65 years and older and every 70 seconds, someone is diagnosed with the disease. 5.3 million American’s and their families are touched by Alzheimer’s Disease.

1. Dark Chocolate

  • Brain Food Facts:Studies carried out by Norwegian researchers found that the flavonoids in cocoa increase blood flow to the brain and may help to protect against conditions with reduced cerebral blood flow like dementia and stroke. To get the most benefits, buy chocolates with low sugar but high cocoa content (70% or more is the best like these 80% organic extra dark chocolates from Vital Choice).However, while cocoa is rich in beneficial compounds, it’s also high in saturated fats. Many times, it’s also paired with high-fat ingredients like full cream in desserts. So it’s best to keep dark chocolate to a small once-a-week treat.Alternative Foods for the Brain:Flavonoids can be found in practically all fruits, vegetables, herbs and spices. A good rule of thumb is that the more colorful a fruit or vegetable is, the higher the levels of flavonoids. Some flavonoid-rich foods that have been studied intensively include red wine, green tea and cherries which will be discussed in detail below.

2. Red Wine

  • Brain Food Facts:The same Norwegian study on dark chocolate also credited modest wine drinking for conferring protective effect on cognitive function and decreasing the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. This is due to the high levels of flavonoids and possibly other polyphenolics such as resveratrol that are presence in red wine.However, alcohol is a double-edged sword that should be used with caution. Because, ironically, many studies have also found that excessive alcohol intake can lead to dementia as well as a host of other serious health conditions such as cancer by triggering chronic inflammation. So if you do drink, limit yourself to no more than one glass a day.It’s also important to note that in the first few hours after drinking wine, alcohol may actually slow thinking and interfere with the memory temporarily. If you’re preparing for an important test or going to sit for an examination, drinking wine is probably not the way to boost your performance.Alternative Foods for the Brain:

    Green tea is rich in a type of flavonoid known as catechins which can reach as high as 1 gram in a single cup. Numerous studies have attest to the health beneficial properties of green tea including its ability to cut the risk of cancer as well as neurodegenerative diseases. Its ability to keep weight in check also makes green tea a popular choice in many health promoting diets.

3. Clam

  • Brain Food Facts:Researchers in the Oxford Project to Investigate Memory and Aging (OPTIMA) found that elderly adults with low vitamin B12 levels had more than four times the usual risk of Alzheimer’s. It’s thought that when vitamin B12 levels are low, blood levels of homocysteine will raise, significantly increasing the risk for dementia, heart attack ad other ailments. To get a healthy dose of vitamin B12, look no further than clams. This shellfish packs a whopping 98.9mcg of vitamin B12 in just 100g serving, or 1648% of the RDA.Alternative Foods for the Brain:Rich sources of vitamin B12 are found in seafood and animal sources including oysters, mussels, fish, shrimps, scallops, liver of most animals and beef. Lower levels of vitamin B12 can also be found in seaweeds, yeasts and fermented foods like miso and tempeh.

4. Asparagus

  • Brain Food Facts:A Korean study published in 2008 found that individuals who were folate deficient were 3.5 times more likely to develop dementia. What’s more surprising is that those who were not folate deficient but had low folate measures were also at significantly increased dementia risk. To make sure you get sufficient folate, make asparagus a frequent addition to your meals since one cup of these green spears will fulfill nearly 66% of your daily folate needs.Alternative Foods for the Brain:Other great sources of folate include citrus fruits, beans (be sure to sprout them to maximize their nutrients and enhance absorption by the body), broccoli, cauliflower, beets, lentils and leafy green vegetables such as spinach and turnip greens.

5. Wild Salmon

  • Brain Food Facts:According to a study conducted by Tufts University in Boston, subjects who consumed an average of three servings of oily fish a week had almost 50 percent lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. These individuals had significantly higher levels of omega-3 fatty acid docosahexaenoic acid in the blood than those who took less fish in their diets. And salmon is an excellent source of omega-3 essential fatty acids as well as other important nutrients such as vitamin D and B12 that can help to prevent neurodegenerative disorders.But, as wild caught salmons, frozen or canned, generally contain more omega-3, less omega-6 and fewer toxins, you’re better off buying the wild version whenever possible. Aim to eat at least two to three servings of oily fish each week to supply your body with inflammation-fighting compounds. If you’re concerned about environmental toxins such as PCB in seafood, you can also consider taking whole fish oil supplement derived from wild salmon.Alternative Foods for the Brain:Anchovies and sardines are also very good sources of omega-3 fats. For people who don’t eat fish, walnuts, flaxseeds and dark green leafy vegetables are rich in plant-based omega-3 precursor, alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). But they lack eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), the two primary omega-3’s. Although technically ALA is converted by the body to EPA and DHA, in reality, the conversion rate is very low (only about one to two percent) and is further reduced if your omega-6 intake is high. So relying solely on walnuts, flaxseeds and dark green leafy vegetables may not provide your body with adequate omega-3 fats. In this case, you can boost your omega-3 intake either by selecting more EPA and DHA-fortified foods, take vegan omega-3 supplements, or both.

6. Walnut

  • Brain Food Facts:Research by the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging suggested that a moderate, but not high, diet of walnuts helped improve motor and cognitive skills in older rodents. The experts believed that a combination of polyphenols, omega-3 fats and other bioactive substances in walnut is responsible for this beneficial effect.But more is not necessarily good. The study discovered that mice fed on a walnut diet equivalent to a human eating more than 1 ounce of walnuts, or about seven to nine walnuts, a day actually displayed lower long-term memory skills.This may be due to the high omega-6 content of walnut. Although this brain-like nut is high in alpha-linolenic acid, it’s even richer in linoleic acid, an omega-6 essential fatty acid. Linoleic acid could lead to more inflammatory compounds being created and less anti-inflammatory omega-3 fats in the body when the omega-6 to omega-3 ratio is out of balanced.Alternative Foods for the Brain:

    Though the exact mechanism of how walnut improves cognitive function is unclear, most doctors and nutritionists recommend eating a wide range of food, including nuts. So don’t stop at walnuts. Each day, grab and enjoy a handful of mixed nuts, dried fruits and seeds — like hazelnuts, pecans, pistachios, raisins, dried cranberries and blueberries — to get a spectrum of health-boosting nutrients each day.

7. Cherry

  • Brain Food Facts:Scientists found that the antioxidant compounds, anthocyanins, which give cherries their bright red color possess anti-inflammatory properties that could work like pain medications such as Vioxx and Celebrex, but without the nasty side effects. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or NSAIDs can cause adverse effects, some of which are severe like stomach bleeding and heart attack, especially among the elderly. But cherries do not irritate the stomach the way manufactured drugs do and they also contain compounds that keep platelets in the blood from clumping together.Alternative Foods for the Brain:Berries like blueberries, raspberries and strawberries are jam-packed with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory phytochemicals that help to reduce brain inflammation and brain oxidative stress, both of which have been associated with dementia and Alzheimer’s.

8. Turmeric

  • Brain Food Facts:Plaques in the brain are thought to contribute to the degradation of brain cells and lead to Alzheimer’s disease. A study found that curcumin in turmeric is an effective substance that removes plagues from the brain. Turmeric, a top anti-inflammatory food used since ancient times, is commonly used as a spice in curry dishes. Countries with populations that eat curry regularly, such as India, have been observed to report lower rates of dementia. Add this inexpensive, versatile spice into your meals at least once a week to cool inflammation and ward off dementia.Alternative Foods for the Brain:Ginger is a close cousin of turmeric with similar anti-inflammatory properties. Though study on its effect on the brain is limited, ginger’s ability to reduce inflammation may also confer some inhibitory effect on dementia indirectly.

9. Apple

  • Brain Food Facts:There are now even more reasons to take an apple a day. Quercetin, found in abundance in the skins of apples, has been found to protect the brain from damages associated with Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders in studies conducted by Cornell University. Other studies have also suggested that eating apples may also help reduce the risk of cancer.Alternative Foods for the Brain:Capers, a common ingredient in Mediterranean cuisine, lovage and red onion are also excellent sources of quercetin. Berries like cherries, raspberries and cranberries also contain some but lower amounts of this flavonoid. Article by The Conscious Life

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Rabbi Dickstein has led the Conservative movement to establish new legal responses that carry with them the full authority of Jewish law. Here are the major points of this new practice:

1. In the case of a full-term pregnancy, when an infant dies for any reason, at any time after birth, its parents and other family members should be obligated for full bereavement practices, just as for any other child. The parents should recite Kaddish for 30 days and should observe yahrzeit. Young siblings have no oblig­ation to say Kaddish, and post-bar/bat mitzvah siblings should be encouraged to use the traditional rituals to work through the many feelings they have.

2. The body should be buried in accordance with Jewish practice. The funeral should follow standard practice with appropriate readings of comfort in place of a eulogy. Parents should be encouraged to attend the funeral, as should family and close friends. The funeral should be held as soon as possible, although if the mother wants to attend, burial may be delayed until she recovers enough physical strength following the delivery to attend.

3. If the infant was not named prior to death, it is usually given a name at the grave. The name may be the one the parents intended to use for their child (although this might be difficult for the surviving grandparents whose own parents may have been remembered with this name), or they might choose a name like Menahem or Nehamah, names that indicate a desire for “comfort.” There are two reasons for the naming: a) according to Jewish folk tradition, giving a name will enable parents to “find” their child in the world to come; and b) psychologists consider the prac­tice of naming to be an important help in healing the parents’ grief.

4.  If the information gathered from an autopsy can help determine the advisability of future pregnancies for the couple or of treatment of diseases to which other chil­dren of the couple might be susceptible, it should be allowed, even encouraged.

5. A complete shiva should be observed, beginning with the meal of consolation and including daily prayer services for the mourners. Communal participation in the shiva makes real this loss and overcomes the tremendous isolation the parents feel. If things had turned out differently, the community would have been there for visit­ing the baby and welcoming it with Jewish birth rituals. The family whose newborn dies should not be denied its community. It is also extremely important, especially for the father, to allow permission to do nothing else but mourn during the shiva period.

6. The father and the mother should be treated equally as mourners. Both parents will react differently to the loss, [but] it is partic­ularly important for the father to recognize his loss, for it is no less real than the mother’s. When the father is treated as a mourner, he is relieved of the burden of “being strong” for his wife. He has a specific set of ritual tasks to do that encourage him to confront the magnitude of his loss in all its dimensions.

7. In the case of infants born prematurely, there is still debate within the Law Committee on how to define “viability.” Some, including Rabbi Dickstein, argue that between five months and thirty weeks the decision concerning mourning might be made by the local rabbi and the parents.

Certainly, there may be those who feel the centuries-old practice of not mourning a neonatal death could be more comforting than engaging in the whole ritual of Jewish bereavement. But for those who desperately need a vehicle for grief, this recent ruling allowing for the mourning of newborns is indeed a welcome development.

Dr. Ron Wolfson is the Fingerhut Professor of Education at American Jewish University and the president of Synagogue 3000.

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