Caregiver Articles

A Fun Friday?

Friday, February 28th, 2014

shutterstock_150383150Fun, Fun, FUN…girls just wanna have it. Okay! boys, too. Yeah, my kinda fun and your kinda fun…may need some defining, eh??

Usually fun is something very challenging and being pushed to my ultimate………………………………………………………………..

l-I-m-I-t-…say, for example, to finish a project and/or having a last second deadline…what a rush…epinephrine to be exact! Or fun IS hours of deep study, meditation–when I’m wrapping my brain around some topic of intrigue/puzzle/enigma.

May be, I’m reframing stress as FUN: May be ? that’s a good thing, huh?

The American Psychological Association has noted: “Stress is to the human condition what tension is to the violin string: too little and the music is dull and raspy; too much and the music is shrill or the string snaps. Stress can be the kiss of death or the spice of life. The issue, really, is how to manage it.”

Then, there also is dancing or goofing around/laughing with my kids is always FUN. Anyway…no need to discuss different forms of fun in depth. You know your fun! I know mine.

Oh, this weirdo blogger is not just totally work…okay, may be I am: most days, but I usually LOVE work. It’s been another exhausting/busy week for me. How about You?! GLAD the week-end IS here…YIPPEEE!! Hubby is out on a Daddy Adventure with the Kids…so, I have a:

moment to think uninterrupted thoughts–WOO HOO!! in between phone calls that is.;) I have a moment with my music of my choice.

BTW: off subject a tad…here in FL we have been so enjoying all the variety of birds…tons of birds! that have escaped the bitterly cold and have flown further south to our backyard. The bird song has been great!! Sorry to Everybody who has been slammed by Winter up North. I’m sorta spoiled now not having to shovel, etc. I miss playing in snow. Living in snow…different story.

UGH!…life of the “raw and the cooked” or the fried and the frozen…extreme living: bitterly cold or excruciatingly hot and learning to adapt and be flexible; takes patience and cultivating many positive traits (i.e. forgiveness/endurance).

Especially as Partners living with a loved one who suffers the …

What are You Engineering?

Saturday, February 22nd, 2014

Happy Saturday Readers!

Swirling subjects are twirling in my mind like a baton. What topic will stick and adhere…here on this post?

Or hit me off the head and hopefully knock some sense into me.

What do You think? Wellness sense: should it be SIMPLE to understand, common and easily accessible and facilitated?

Personally, I like simple organization/solution. Things often get overcomplicated unnecessarily. I “try” to live: simplify, simplify, simplify.

2013-11-22-115641I’m trying to simplify, organize, consolidate and collate my drafts. Perhaps, they will be published or deleted. Time to take out the trash and/or recycle. I’d rather recycle when/if possible/reasonable.

THANK YOU for recycling when possible…i.e. stuff and relationships, etc.!

What can you recycle? What can I recycle?

Recycle happy, positive thoughts! Throw the negative, toxic thoughts AWAY!!

I’m all smiles (in this recycled/old photo) taken, not too long ago, by my son on the day I received a useful tool from my local town…a BIG recycling bin!!…the size of a trash bin.

(FYI: Actually, my clothes and accessories pictured here are all recycled items.)

For the longest time, I had been complaining (mostly muttering to myself)… Yeah, this talker talks to herself too! Better I mutter to myself, eh?! ;)… about how ridiculously illogical our city provided HUGE trash bins and tiny recycle bins…which sorta encouraged more trash throwing than recycling. I sorta have the same problem with the way food is packaged, labeled, etc.
What are We Engineering?! What are We Encouraging?!
Am I a food engineer?! Are You a food engineer?!

As stated by Fung et al. in the revision to the classic engineering text, Foundations of Solid Mechanics:

“Engineering is quite different from science. Scientists try to understand nature. Engineers try to make things that do not exist in nature. Engineers stress invention. To embody an invention the engineer must put his idea in concrete terms, and design something that people can use. That something can be a device, a gadget, a material, a method, a computing program, an innovative experiment, a new solution to a problem, or an improvement on what is existing. Since a design has to be concrete, it must have its …

Bring “It” On and Bring “It” Out!

Monday, December 9th, 2013

shutterstock_145381219Are You feelin’ it?!

Oh yeah, I’m feelin’ it!!

And what is “it” …you’re wondering, huh?!

You kinda need to know what “it” is before answering my initial question, eh?! ;)

“It” is other than a big sneeze, though my allergies are acting up…among other things acting up…

the daily PRESS-URE IS ON!!! (pressure can also be subtle, seductive gradualism aka erosion)

And I’m resisting the squeezing, sneezing (and melting)!…a big bear hug is 1 thing and this is quite another and I will NOT conform!…I will e-x-p-a-n-d…I will f-l-e-x…I will meditate…I will pray…I will work…at throwing this anxiety/burden ? off my mind and shoulders…I will try or die…HOPEFULLY not!

I object borg: “resistance is NOT futile!”:)…It’s survival, it’s life!

And may be? You’re thinking: what else would you expect joanie: it’s Monday: start of a new work week, new stresses, new caring and giving-compassion challenges/responsibilities…aka learning new skill(s) opportunit(y)ies…

Please God: help make my life lessons easy today…

Over the week-end, kids and I went with some friends to an educational event Sunday. To my delight, I met this Very older-wise-gentleman…he gave this incredible lecture/motivational talk that I found encouraging (and was hoping the kids would learn something valuable, too).

Who couldn’t use a sweet-genuinely-caring-wise grandpa in your life?!

A “real” grandpa I would describe as:

A wise and protecting grandpa is not a fake character in disguise…uttering ho-ho-ho. This “real” grandpa whispers words of wisdom. A grandpa who doesn’t require you to sit on his lap and doesn’t care if you’re naughty or nice before passing out presents. A “real” wise grandpa plants trees and avoids centuries of cutting customs that endanger your breathing and/or the health of our planet. The kind of grandpa that is always in town to help and doesn’t just show up for a party or a cookie.

(Personally, I enJOY learning a lot from older folks/elders with years of  living wisdom/experience to help us younger folks..not sure ? how old he/the smart grandfatherly above-mentioned speaker is… 80’s+?) I took some hieroglyphics…trying to decipher my notes to share an interesting point or …

A Shoulder to Sleep On or To Cry On?

Saturday, November 9th, 2013

shutterstock_110568677(2)Empathy, we all need some!

Some to give and some to get: No Excuses – Empathy Needed

Empathy: What’s Your description?! Here’s an on-line dictionary’s description:

“The action of understanding, being aware of, being sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the feelings, thoughts, and experience of another of either the past or present without having the feelings, thoughts, and experience fully communicated in an objectively explicit manner.”

I like to think of empathy according to an ancient verse: “Rejoice with people who rejoice; Weep with those who weep.” (Romans 12:15)

Examples that produce empathy: 1 Headline from Cnn. Another from Huffington Post:

“Death Toll likely exceeds 1,000 after typhoon slams Philippines”

“Sleeping Stranger Subway Picture on Q Train Defines Empathy and Is a Lesson In Being Good”

(You can check out/read on-line those articles IF You choose for further details.)

All of us: Partners, Caregivers, Friends, Breathing-Fragile-Life have two shoulders.

How will we use our shoulders today?!

Can we be that shoulder to cry on? Can we be that shoulder to sleep on? Can we exercise empathy? Can we show unselfish loving-kindness to one another? Can we offer practical assistance to those in need?

(We are all in need of a shoulder!)

Love, Joy, Peace (and Strong Shoulders) to All!:)

photo-the-words-i-care-spoken-by-many-caring-people-who-are-supporters-friends-and-family-expressing available at Shutterstock

Dangerous Places: Movies, Malls & Classrooms?!

Wednesday, October 23rd, 2013

shutterstock_68629072(1)Danger and Horror have a way of deeply imprinting memories in our mind.

I remember exactly where I was and what I was doing when…

rocking and nursing my (1 month) brand-new baby boy L-P. Usually, when engaged in this activity of privilege: feeding and comforting our baby, the TV was off! (Talking, singing, reading, music was on!)

However, this was not a usual day and for whatever unusual reason, the TV was on…so,

I heard the horrific Columbine massacre news!:(

L-P was crying and needing comfort and me, new mommy was crying and needing comfort!

(I remember finding solace in the notion of never bringing him to school and keeping him close. Plus, he was years away from that reality i.e. elementary school enrollment.)

Why the TV was on that day–don’t know, don’t remember. (Because I had made a resolve to NOT expose my baby/child to TV for, at least, the first two years of his life.)

Pretty much we succeeded in that…TV was not a steady diet. We/partners/parents still “attempt” to limit TV, media…but, like any important parenting endeavor: it’s not an easy daily battle.

Every parent needs to battle corrupting forces that can rob a child of his/her childhood or his/her life. 

It’s part of the parental job description: Preserving Your Child’s Innocence and Protecting their Fleeting Childhood! No one else will do it quite like you!

There are many: so-called fathers-priests/coaches, drug-dealers, big business targeting youth, the porn industry, on-line and off-line threats, and countless non-compassionate/violent elements ever ready to pounce…thereby taking/stealing your kid’s precious innocence and/or precious childhood away in a split second of inattentiveness or neglect.

WAKE UP PARENTS!…this is not the world you and I grew up in! Back in the day: there was at least facade of “safety”…now everything is hanging out in the open for all to see regardless of age. All the (global) dirty laundry isn’t hidden anymore.

Idiot parents are losing their beautiful babies to non-compassionate daycare operators who drug and OD babies on benadryl. SADLY, Puppy mills and baby mills exist.:(

(You can research the numbers of baby benadryl deaths on-line to see for yourself.) …

Confessions Of A Caregiver

Sunday, October 13th, 2013

shutterstock_83780134Confessions. An attracting or repulsing concept.

Blog description: A potentially playful truth or dare post IF you will.

Who hasn’t made a confession?? Who hasn’t played truth or dare??

What are you playing??

Doesn’t everybody/somebody have “something” to confess or own up to or admit to or hide??

Some of us carry around weighty or light secrets (benign or malignant) we believe only we know. You must be carrying a secret, right??

Yes, certain professions require discretion, confidentiality, secrecy and/or responsibility to keep things on the q.t. (quiet).

At times: prudence, safety, honesty and compassion calls for tight lips. Is it true: loose lips sink ships?

When someone takes you in their confidence and shares something “important” to them–do You honor their trust?? Would you betray a trust? When and why? Are you honest in your communication(s)? Are you trustworthy?

Here’s an interesting Proverb on the topic of confidentiality:

“A slanderer goes about revealing confidential talk, Do not associate with one who loves to gossip or who entices with his lips.” Proverb 20:19


Have You read or heard a well-known Jewish tale about the consequences of spreading hurtful gossip? I’ve read it in different places. Here’s one succinct version: Scattering Feathers in the Wind

 A man went about town slandering the town’s wise man. Later, the malicious gossiper realized his wrong and went to the wise man to ask for forgiveness, offering to do whatever was necessary to make amends. The wise man had one request: The gossiper was told to go and take a feather pillow and cut it open, scattering the feathers to the wind. Though puzzled by the request, the gossiper did as he was instructed and then returned to the wise man.

 “Am I now forgiven?” he asked. “First, go and gather all the feathers,” the wise man responded.

“But how can I? The wind has already scattered them.”

It is as difficult to repair the damage done by your words as it is to recover the feathers.”

That Jewish tale teaches the importance of thinking before speaking or …

Rhyme Time: Memory Aid

Tuesday, October 1st, 2013

shutterstock_124477423Poetry and rhyme are helpful positive tools…for most schools.

Rhyme and poetry can serve as positive fuel…for any blog. Especially, when Your brain’s in a fog or your thoughts are distracted by a barking dog -lol or any favorite frog or fish…

I try to employ coy;)…concise combinations of words when I wish

to express various

learning lessons


just gibberish…

for example,

this post is giving me ample…

space to embrace…at my own pace

to day

to say…

and with out delay:


Succinctly and symbolicall-y!- “oui!” lol:) (“oui” may sound like “wee” to the newbie…however, to the clever it’s w-ay…

over Your head?! non(?) (.)

(Stop! being goofy- joanie!)…aka as me trying to have some fun with this jokingly poetic post. What do You expect…most?? Fall is a (fun) favorite season for me: an aspiring poet wannabe…

Seriously, check out this: Great article I read in:

Time Ideas on-line: need-to-remember-something-make-it-rhyme

Songs and rhymes can be used to remember all kinds of information. A study just published in the journal Memory and Cognition finds that adults learned a new language more effectively when they sang the words instead of spoke them. Even great literature is susceptible to this treatment. Book Tunes, a collaboration between educational entrepreneur Jonathan Sauer and hip-hop artist Andy Bernstein (he performs under the name Abdominal), turns long, wordy books into compact, catchy raps, spoken over an insistent beat. ~Annie Murphy Paul

As partners, parents, caregivers, fragile life: we have lots of vital information we need to remember. As fellow members of the human race, when it comes to managing our lives, our love(s), our pain(s), our medication(s), our compassion(s) or our time(s): what we may need? more…rhyme(s)!:)

Poetry is not just an emotional coping tool of mine. It’s a memory aid as well…

“For everything there is an appointed time, even a time for every affair under the heavens: a time for birth and a time to die; […]a time to weep and a time to laugh; a time to wail and a time to skip about;” Eccl. 3:1-4

Working hard as a partner, parent and caregiver…we may forget how to have FUN!


A Partner In Pain: How To Help Two

Monday, September 23rd, 2013

shutterstock_135280343Greetings Psych Central and Beyond! I wish You PEACE.

Peace of Mind and Peace of Heart; that’s a wellness start!:)

On the 18th of this month, I said “goodbye” to the 17th tooth in my mouth. A wisdom tooth that has been bothering me for a while.  (What’s been bothering You?? and for a while??) Hope You get relief.

For context IF You wish, You can check out: A Partner in Pain: How to Help!

Though what’s a wisdom tooth problem, when so many are suffering needlessly with bigger bothers/problems in other places like: US, Syria or Kenya, etc!:( All are in my thoughts and prayers!

Everyone needs peace, compassion and healing of one kind or another. We all need Doctors, Dentists, Leaders that truly care and are willing to help us: All Beautiful-Breathing-Fragile-Life. It’s sad that in many places people are not getting the medical care, mental care or pain management they desperately need.

Truly hope YOU get what You need. Need a laugh?!:)

At least, I was able to find (with help/empathy from: Hubby Chato Stewart and Friends) a reputable oral surgeon (close by) who cares more about my well-being than my money.  She extracted my tooth for 1/4th of what another surgeon wanted. Her and her Staff were Kind. I thanked her for her work of compassion and she hugged me as I left her office.

Naively, I was hoping that goodbye would mean “Hello!” to No more immediate bothers/concerns/pains associated with #17 and that I would be feeling pretty good right away! Guess, I still have LOTS to learn -lol especially about recovery

Time has been a topic of intrigue for me for years…always learning timing and patience. (That’s probably 1 reason why I value the written word/poetry/books…because they transcend time. This blog …

32 Reasons For Happiness

Sunday, September 1st, 2013

shutterstock_99979721HOORAY! Today, September 1st, (2013) quadruple eight (32) Reasons for HAPPINESS to Ruminate:

*Please Note: This on-going list is a Coping Tool for Partners, Caregivers and Others. Positive Reflection adds to Our Wellness!

32. Loyalty. Having at least 1 Loyal Friend is (really) all You need. Having/finding more than 1: a blessing!:)

31. Forgiveness. Having at least 1 Forgiving Friend is (really) all You need. Having/finding more than 1: a blessing!

30. Honesty. Having at least 1 Honest Friend is (really) all You need. Having/Finding more than 1: a blessing!

29. Humor. Having at least 1 Humorous Friend is (really) all You need. Having/Finding more than 1: a blessing!

28. Wisdom. Having at least 1 Wise Friend is (really) all You need. Having/Finding more than 1: a blessing!

27. Generosity. Having at least 1 Generous Friend is all You need. Having/Finding more than 1: a blessing!

26. Musical. Having at least 1 Musical Friend is all You need. Having/Finding more than 1: a blessing!

25. Peaceful. Having at least 1 Peaceful Friend is (really) all You need. Having/Finding more than 1: a blessing!

“For You have proved to be a refuge for me, A strong tower in the face of the enemy.” (Song/Psalm 61:3)


24-17 see post: 24 Reasons For Happiness!

16-9 see post: 16 Reasons for Happiness!

8-1 see post: 8 Reasons For Happiness


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LOVE: a 4 Letter Word Mothers (Should) Use!

Tuesday, August 27th, 2013

shutterstock_150097520Oh, it’s okay baby, don’t cry! (Mother, Mom, Mommy), Mama IS here for You because I LOVE You!

This beautiful word is expressed not only on our lips throughout the day to our kids, but in our daily deeds as we assist our young ones growing to maturity. Maturity doesn’t involve just physical growth, but emotional, mental and spiritual growth as well. As mothers, our choices affect our kids in complicated ways. (Ways we may not fully comprehend at this moment in time due to our own limitations or limitations of science and research.)

Of course, every Mother wants the best for her child. Our choices (especially compassionate ones) hopefully: will have a VERY positive impact on our child’s wellness: mental, emotional, physical, spiritual health!

Partners and Parents need to carefully consider:

  • What we eat and why?
  • What we feed our mind and why?
  • What we listen to and when?
  • How we spend our time?


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