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Posts Tagged ‘scrapbook memories’

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.

Jewish twist on parenting

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Homeless Receive Care Packet from Stillborn Angel

A plastic bag full of crackers, juice and cookies lay on the back seat of my mother-in-law’s car. My 10 year old vehicle breaks down quite often, so my husband’s mother loaned me her zippy little car for a few days. I thought what a great idea, snacks and a beverage for when she’s stuck in traffic.

I forgot to inquire about the snacks; however, the subject came up in her bible study class days later. My mother-in-law’s friend stated that she was rather uncomfortable giving money to the homeless. Whatever the case, the vote was unanimous that we all had similar thoughts of uneasiness by giving just cash.

My mother-in-law packs up goodies for the homeless people standing at the intersection we pass daily, going into Greensboro. Juice boxes, granola bars, crackers, cookies and chips are placed into a see through plastic bag. Nothing in them will melt from our intense North Carolina heat.

I love the idea of helping out the less fortunate in this “out-of-the-box” manner. I decided to participate. It makes me feel good and I hope to add a little nourishment for someone less fortunate than myself. Giving back to the community in this fashion may touch the heart of a homeless person in a positive way. One never knows when they are making a memory, but it’s worth trying. I insert a little piece of paper with Tanner’s name in between the snacks. This act of kindness gives me the opportunity to write my stillborn angel’s name many, many times. Bereaved parents never forget their children. Larry Wayne McCraw was the recipient of the snack bag one rainy day.

Larry recently passed in a vehicular accident. Rest in Peace dear Larry.

Read our local blog regarding Greensboro’s homeless community, http://chosenfast.com

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I had the pleasure of meeting Anna and William Heroy of Old Photo Specialists while delivering Just a Cloud Away, Inc.™ Journals in Downtown Greensboro, North Carolina. The shop is absolutely beautiful and nostalgic with photos, each with a story gracing their walls.

 As a surprise, William offered to create a forever photograph of our stillborn son. My husband and I often replace Tanner’s photograph in his memory garden due to fading from the sun.

Many people are unaware of the product William offers in his studio. The photographs are reproduced on archival material resistant to fading and water. The photos can even be displayed without inserting into a glass frame. They would make a wonderful sympathy gift.

One of the 12 photographs we have of our little angel is so precious, I choose this one for William to work with. He did not re-touch Tanner’s picture, but now we will always have this picture and never have to reproduce it again.

William also printed a short poem found in Tanner’s scrapbook pages.

Pictures like this are priceless, thank you William.

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The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Fresher than ever.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 4,800 times in 2010. That’s about 12 full 747s.

In 2010, there were 51 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 71 posts. There were 377 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 105mb. That’s about 1 pictures per day.

The busiest day of the year was November 8th with 90 views. The most popular post that day was My Grandmother Didn’t Remember Me.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were facebook.com, shivere.wordpress.com, en.wordpress.com, mail.yahoo.com, and justacloudaway.com.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for angelversary poems, funeral photography, infant loss photography, infant death photography, and funeral flowers.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

My Grandmother Didn’t Remember Me November 2010
5 comments

2

Funeral or Memorial Service for a Baby January 2010

3

Pregnancy & Infant Loss Photography January 2010
1 comment

4

Funeral Flowers February 2010

5

Helleborus Memory Garden Plant December 2009
1 comment

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The home had the typical and comforting scent of any Grandparents house, cottage-like. The room was warm and cozy with Joe reclined in the corner chair wearing a flannel and covered with a fuzzy fleece blanket. He was awake, talkative and in a jovial mood.

 Joe and Evelyn

Joe and Margaret Davis just celebrated their 59th wedding anniversary with her knowing the past 5 years her husband had Alzheimer’s disease. Margaret noticed signs of the disease more than 8 years ago and decided to keep her husband at home. Margaret is still in good health and with the assistance of an in-home care agency to help with cooking (for both), cleaning, companionship and looking after Joe, they can live together. The agency reminds Margaret that hurtful words Joe would occasionally speak is the disease talking and being in the military (long-term memory) may contribute to other comments.

 

Joe was also emotional this day and held Margaret’s hand saying,” When I was 18, I loved this woman and I can’t remember her name.” Margaret stated her and Joe always held hands and still pray together, with Joe remembering most of the Lord’s Prayer. While Joe was still awake and in good spirits, Margaret decided to play a song on the piano while the rest of us tried to sing. Amazing Grace was the selection and Joe was very moved by the music by letting go of a few tears and squeezing Evelyn’s hand.

 Joe and Margaret

Margaret is able to treasure lasting memory’s within the walls of their home, especially with the love and support of their daughter Millie. Millie checks on them regularly and communicates directly with the in-home care agency regarding concerns or issues needing to be addressed, including the 90 day assessments.

 Margaret plays Amazing Grace

As we left, Margaret was sure to show us all the photographs of them together through the years, with every picture having a detailed story. Joe said good-bye to us and that Margaret knew everything and is a beautiful woman he would never forget.

Evelyn Yalung of Options for Senior America takes on new clients, however, considers them an extended part of her family with frequent visits, phone calls and gift giving. Most of her clients are spouses wanting to keep loved ones at home. For those with advanced Alzheimer’s Disease, Options for Senior America provides 24 hour in-home care. This is due to the patient needing constant care. Those with the disease may wander and put themselves in danger. Evelyn knows that families with loved ones diagnosed with the disease are overwhelmed. She offers a listening ear and literature to walk families through the transitions forthcoming. In-home care provides Margaret with a peace of mind and someone to talk to when matters are too much to handle by herself.

Read a daughter’s perspective

Read a granddaughter’s perspective 

Free Supplies, tools and materials for monthly papercrafting workshop to honor loved ones and remember those who have passed.

Emerald Event Center

2000 East Wendover

January 21st Friday Night

from 5-11pm

RSVP Diana@justacloudaway.com

 

Sponsored by

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