baby boomers

GreatCall Jitterbug Cell Phones for Senior Citizens

Jitterbug!  A fave dance of my parents’ youth. A fave cell phone for seniors that my parents love, aging in place, from GreatCall.

Jitterbug cell phones for elderly seniors Kaye Swain senior mom favorite
GreatCall gave my senior mom the biggest blessing many years ago. As long-time readers may remember, we got the Jitterbug cell phone for her several years ago. At the time, it was the primary cell phone for seniors that was available. And, as I recall, the only one that was a flip phone, which is why I bought it. You handled it much like a regular land-line phone and when you shut it, it automatically turned off. With the bar phones that were popular at the time, you had to take an extra step and push a button to turn it off. For a senior citizen who had very little techy experience, I knew that would be hard for her.

There was a bit of a learning curve with her Jitterbug but not much. Back then they were large and uber simple cell phones and that’s exactly what she needed and wanted. The O was very central at the bottom, big and easy to push. If she couldn’t figure things out, she knew she could push O, get the operator and ask for help. That was perfect as she had grown up in the era when you could call the operator directly and get a wide variety of help including getting phone numbers, being directed to the police emergency line, and even being able to request an emergency cut-in if someone was on the phone and you needed to talk to them due to an emergency. Good grief, do you realize we can rarely do that anymore! And rarely need to! I just tried on my own iPhone and merely got a message from my carrier to dial my number. Then I tried on my home line and got a message that if it was an emergency, call 9-1-1. BUT if I couldn’t get 9-1-1 AND it was a true emergency, dial O again. I didn’t, but that did give me a measure of “comfort” to know I COULD have. WOW! The times, they are a’changing!

And that’s true for GreatCall’s Jitterbug as well. As great as it worked and as much as we loved that simple Jitterbug, they updated it. In many ways, they made it much better. In a couple ways, they made it a bit harder – at least for my senior mom. They added a camera, texting, and a red button called 5 Star. This enables seniors who need emergency assistance to get it much quicker by pushing just the button. Overall, I really appreciate it. I went to their website and updated both my senior mom AND another sweet senior in my life with emergency contact information, medical and medication information, etc. Now, if they are home alone and push that button but can’t talk, GreatCall can get in touch with me or another family member to get them the help they will need. And if they can’t get any of us, GreatCall operators can call the emergency services in our area and have info to give the medical team that will help our loved ones in a time of crisis. AWESOME. One downside to it, which is more a headache for Great Call than us, is that my sweet mom occasionally hits the 5Star button accidentally. On her current phone, it’s right next to the YES button and very easy to do. Of course, we just explain what happened and they are always awesome and patient about it.

Three Jitterbug Cell Phones for Elderly Seniors Baby Boomers More

Bigger Flip Phone and Smart Phone for Seniors

GreatCall has come out with two more new senior-friendly phones with even more interesting options. I was quite excited when they offered to let me use them for a few weeks and share the information with y’all. So, of course, I said YES. When I got them, I realized that they were customizing their cell phones for a more tech-savvy group of senior citizens.

The first is quite similar to my senior mom’s but a bit bigger and with the keys in different spots. I was a bit concerned when I opened it to a menu that requires the user to have to make choices, scroll, etc. No problem for me, of course. But a MEGA stumbling block for my senior mom. No worries, though. I checked the owner’s manual and discovered that all I had to do was – you guessed it – DIAL O. Sure enough, a very cheery voice answered, transferred me to tech, and in less than 5 minutes, she had made the adjustment I needed. Then I just had to close it and wait. In less than an hour, VOILA, back to the normal screen of seeing phone numbers. I always make sure it’s in order of what she uses most. My number is first followed by her sweet sisters, etc. (Since this is a review phone, I didn’t change the order 😉 ).

Kaye Swain Roseville REALTOR shares Greatcall elderly cellphone Jitterbug Flip

While chatting with the operator, I asked about the simpler Flip cell phone my senior mom has. I was concerned they would phase it out. (As nice as the new phones are, she does very well on the phone she has and might have a hard time if she had to change.) I was thrilled to hear it should be around for a very long time. It’s the least expensive, easiest, and smallest phone which is perfect for her.

BUT baby boomers are entering senior citizen status each day. Many  are used to tech or even tech-savvy (like me). For them, these new Great Call cell phones do offer some terrific options in a senior-friendly way.

Kaye Swain Roseville Real Estate Agent shares GreatCall Jitterbug cell phone for elderly seniors

The updated Flip Phone has large buttons, large screens and text, a simple menu, voice dial, a powerful speaker, a magnifier with LED flashlight (I have apps for those and LOVE them!!!!) and the 5Star emergency button. All great for aging boomers and seniors. For the safety-conscious, there is a medication and refill reminder coach, a daily automated check-in call option, daily health tips, and more. And don’t forget the fun – like the built-in camera with flash, texting options (many of our grandkids prefer to text rather than call so this can mean more grandkid communication), and two brain games.

Kaye Swain shares GreatCall Jitterbug smart phones for seniors

The biggest of these sweet cell phones for seniors is the Jitterbug Smart – and as you may guess, it is indeed a smart phone for seniors! It features big print and big buttons which is nice. I’m not at that point where it’s dire, but it sure would come in handy. (I can make my buttons bigger on my iPhone but it does tend to make things look messier so for now, I’m staying smaller. 🙂 ).

Like it’s smaller brother the Flip, it offers phone, text, and camera. It has a button labeled Photo Album (the Flip just calls it My Photos). And the brain games (which includes a brain fitness newsletter).

Jitterbug Adds Brain Games to Cell Phones for Seniors

I tried to set up the Brain games but must have mistyped my password. In the process of figuring it out, I switched to my Mac which made it much easier to work with. While doing that I learned that Brainquest has 4 free games, along with more if you subscribe for a small amount per month. That might be something you want to consider and if not, you might not want to sign up at all. I would check it out with your senior parent.

GreatCall Jitterbug Smart phone for senior citizens via Kaye Swain REALTOR Roseville Sacramento CA

Here are the games for each phone:

The Jitterbug Flip cell phone includes:

  • Quick Match – improve focus by retraining your brain to focus its attention
  • Make a Pair – sharpen your memory by improving your brain’s ability to record what it sees

The Jitterbug Smart cell phone includes:

  • Divided Attention – challenge your brain to focus in on and react to particular details
  • Target Tracker – help build divided attention by tracking several moving objects
  • Hawk Eye – train your visual precision and exercise your field of view
  • Visual Sweeps – speed up visual processing to notice more of what’s around, react to it more quickly, and remember it better

According to BrainHQ’s website:
“BrainHQ is a brain-​training system built and tested by an international team of top neuroscientists and other brain experts. Unlike other brain-training programs, BrainHQ is proven to work—dozens of published papers (and counting) show real benefits from using exercises in BrainHQ. This research shows cognitive benefits (such as better memory and faster processing) as well as real-life benefits (such as safer driving and better hearing in noisy places). ​No other program has this level of proof.”

That does sound like a useful tool for many. I tried one of the games and it was interesting. But got faster and faster. I have to admit, I prefer to keep my brain active with writing, blogging, and playing with grandkids and granddogs. But my husband would have enjoyed it. He always liked beating his last score at computer games, so this would have been right up his alley. 😉

More items of interest about the Jitterbug Smart:

  • The screen on the Jitterbug Smart cell phone for seniors got dark half way through signing up for brain games. You might check that setting right from the get-go. I went to settings (not to be mistaken for Google Settings, scrolled down to display, and turned off adaptive brightness. I don’t want my phone to decide how much light I need (and I do need bright light). You’ll have to decide which you or your senior parent prefers.
  • While scrolling around in settings I spotted an option to turn on a One-Touch option. I gave it a try and what do you know. Icons like I see on my own iPhone. I prefer those, and my senior mom has gotten used to them thanks to her iPad with all her great-grandkid photos. But I think this option could be a great one for many seniors who aren’t used to the icons.
  • As you type, you’ll feel a slight vibration. Overall, I think that will be a big help for many seniors to assure them they actually did type. But for the first few touches, it made me feel like, “yikes, what did I do.” 😉
  • Make sure you keep the owner’s manual handy for the first few days. I am very tech-savvy and used to working with a variety of cell phones. I did use the manual a few times. (I give that advice with all cell phones – even my iPhone 🙂 ).
  • My Jitterbug smart phone for seniors came set up with SETTINGS – GESTURES —> Turn over to mute incoming calls AND turn over to snooze alarm clocks. That could be confusing for some senior citizens, so you might want to adjust that from the beginning.
  • This is an Android smart phone for senior citizens. If you’ve used Android successfully in the past, I’m guessing you will love this even more. I’m definitely going to tell my sweet mother-in-law about it. I think it will be much easier for her than the Android she currently has.
  • It already comes with large print and easy accessibility. BUT there is an accessibility menu under settings with even more choices for special needs.
  • Like the normal Androids, you can add services, apps, etc, including the ability to print directly from this via wifi. Very handy!
  • Be careful, and warn your senior parents – the 5Star button at the bottom does call their emergency operator. If you hit it accidentally (and where it’s located, I think that might be an easy thing to do) don’t be startled when a voice asks if you are having an emergency. As I said before, my senior mom has done that several times and we’re quite used to it (well, I am anyway 😉 ). They are ALWAYS great, patient, and helpful. And honestly, that 5Star emergency button, along with the operator O are my two favorite things about this phone, along with the GPS that it now offers. That gives me some peace of mind that, if either of my moms has an emergency, they have good resources (my m-i-l has the Splash emergency pendant). And so do I. If I am trying to call one of them and can’t get them, I can call GreatCall directly and ask THEM to contact my parent through their device. And they can! IF you set up the emergency information ahead of time AND confirm that it is all spelled correctly. That’s a lesson we learned the hard way a while back. But all worked out fine and now they’re both set up completely.

GreatCall is a GREAT CALL for Cell Phones for Seniors

So what’s the bottom line? Buying a GreatCall cell phone for elderly parents, as well as boomers and seniors, can definitely be a great call on your part! I very much appreciate both my moms having their equipment. My senior mom does still have her Philips Lifeline Fall Alert Pendant and I’m glad! I want her to have both. She never takes that pendant off. If she falls unconscious, she’ll have help. Eventually both moms will probably have that. But it only works around the house. Thanks to the GPS in the GreatCall Jitterbug smart phones for seniors as well as the Splash emergency pendant, they have extra protection if they are out and about. Or if they get lost on a walk accidentally. I highly recommend these easy to use cell phones for seniors! They’re great for our senior parents with a good variety of options to match varying technical skills. 🙂

Beverlys Pink Saturday is full of fun things for SandwichINK Real Estate Info - including the occasional pink house

Kaye Swain REALTOR in Roseville CA has Fun and so will other boomers and seniors and grandparents whether at home or out and about working at their real estate business at the Grand Social

Great Aging in Place Resources for Boomers and Seniors

Kaye Swain Roseville real estate agent blogger shares aging in place healthy eating tips

Lots going on around my neck of the woods. How about yours? 🙂 I’m staying busy working  hard at eating healthy as I plug away on real estate projects including searching for the just perfect 55+ retirement home for a house-hunting client, a fellow baby boomer helping senior parents. And oh my, there are some lovely ones in our Roseville Rocklin Lincoln Sacramento area, I have to say. Three by Del Webb, as well as some other great options.

There are even some delightful “patio homes” by Silverado. They have no real yard, just a little patio for plants. But the houses are gorgeous and range from small to large. There’s even a two-story model with the upstairs area most likely used by caregivers who spend the night or family caregivers who live with the senior. Plus it offers an emergency alert pendant similar to my senior mom’s Lifeline Alert Pendant by Philips. Only this pendant works all through the property area and it signals emergency care personnel who are on an adjoining care facility’s premises 24/7. A very nice option for older boomers and seniors or those with health issues that allow them to be at home with careful care and monitoring. We considered that as it would give my mom an extra cushion of care when I’m out and about. But the patio option that was available at the time was too small and too dark to allow my mom to grow her beloved tomatoes so we went a different direction that is working well for us.

One especially nice thing about all the Del Webb retirement homes and others in the area is that they offer heated swimming pools that allow boomers and seniors to exercise more easily. A great way of staying healthier and active longer! That’s a vital component to successful aging in place.

How about y’all? Do you have these aging in place options in your neck of the woods? I’d love to hear in the comments or at the Facebook page. 🙂

Eating Healthy Tips to Lose Weight

Kaye-Swain-Roseville-real-estate-agent-shares-healthy-eating-breakfast-food-choices--768x600 (1)

You may remember I wrote in past posts about trying different options in my quest for eating healthy to lose some weight. I spent decades being underweight. Then my metabolism changed and now I’ve joined the ranks of watching my weight – not very successfully the last few years, I’m afraid. I once did the Southbeach Diet and lost about 20-30 pounds and loved it. But I went back to normal eating (and cheating) and gained it all back plus 10. Then I tried the Fat Belly Diet and really liked that. Too much. Especially when I discovered it allowed dark chocolate and cashews. Sadly, those are such favorites I ate a few too many and that failed for me too, though I still think it’s got some good points – just avoid the chocolate and cashews.

Now I’m on a just plain healthy eating diet – low fat and healthy fats, low calorie but tasty calories – and doing much better. I’ve gone two months with no sodas – hooray! And two months with no chocolate – hooray. And I’m half way to my goal. And I have to admit I’m doing fine. I do miss the extra energy from my Cherry Cokes! But I’m walking daily – 2 – 4 miles most days, sometimes more. And the kudos I got from my granddaughter today made it doubly worthwhile. Plus I’m immersing myself in healthy eating cookbooks including the Taste of Home Comfort Foods Diet Book (I have one and there appear to be several others – yummmm) and the very cool Eat This Not That! magazine I purchased in the grocery store. That has a ton of great recipes, tips, and resources.

I’m keeping a daily check on what I eat using the iPhone app CalorieKing (they don’t seem to have it for the Android yet but they do have a great website for all) and on how much I walk with my fave Pedometer. Though I also added the Walker app as it shows me how many calories I’ve burned. (Again, both of these seem to be only for the iPhone but they do have several similar apps for the Android to check out.)  One tip though. Walker shows you how many calories your walk burned and CalorieKing lets you type in that amount and subtracts it from the total calories you’ve eaten for the day, which in theory gives you more calories to eat. In reality, I put on another pound when I did that. So now I just look at how much energy I’ve burned but I’m sticking with my daily goal of 1350-1400 calories. And putting to good use the various healthy eating ideas I’ve found online as well as in my books. I’ve created a new Pinterest board – Low Carb and Fat and added tons of great tips and recipes. You can find it at  🙂

Bible Verse Coloring Pages for Grandkids

Speaking of grandkids, it’s almost time for Vacation Bible School and I’m looking forward to it. How about you? Are you helping with one? I’m leading a group again this year. They’ve chosen some great Bible verses for it from 2 Timothy 3:16-17:

God has breathed life into all Scripture. It is useful for teaching us what is true.

It is useful for correcting our mistakes. It is useful for making our lives whole again.

It is useful for training us to do what is right.

By using Scripture, the servant of God can be completely prepared to do every good thing.

Isn’t that terrific for sharing with our grandkids? And they are coupling the Bible verses with the Armor of God. So, of course, I’m working on Bible verse coloring pages for the class as well as sharing them with my grandkids. 🙂

I want to say a big THANK YOU to Christianity Cove for sharing freely 5 Bible story pictures including the Armor of Faith. They are making a cute combo with the verses, which I’ll be sharing with you over the next few weeks.

Kaye Swain Roseville CA shares Bible verse coloring pages Scripture Truth

(Please note, this is the corrected version – saying Belt of Truth 😉 )


Have a great week!

Well, that’s it for now. Have a lovely week full delicious and healthy eating and exercise, not to mention plenty of sweet hugs!  🙂






Aren’t these fall leaves delightful! Especially for Northern California! They are all around my church. I do love to go to church weekly. But I especially LOVE it in the autumn with these glorious leaves getting prettier and prettier throughout the season.

Christian Words of Encouragement from Kaye Swain real estate agent in Roseville CA

This is another of my favorite Bible verses that are especially comforting during a crisis.


This Scripture goes wonderfully with a favorite old praise hymn we used to sing when my children were little and my grandchildren were just a twinkle in my eyes. It was a delight to listen to it again. I hope you will be blessed as well.  🙂


Here’s the next study in the Verse-by-Verse Bible study series by David Guzik in the Book of John – #5. You can find all of them that I’ve already shared at my YouTube playlist by clicking here.

Have a blessed and beautiful week. And enjoy these coloring pages for you and your grandkids and perhaps your Trick or Treaters. 🙂

God loves you on Halloween and through the whole year via Kaye Swain SandwichINK


Roseville CA real estate agent Kaye Swain loves sharing coloring pages for adults on her blog


P.S. Be sure to check back soon as I have another post coming out this week. Or even easier – for email updates to SandwichINK for boomers & seniors, caregivers & grandparents, just…

Christian real estate agent blogger Kaye Swain visiting Faith Filled Friday at the Missional Women

Kaye Swain Placer County social media blogger visits Spiritual Sunday

Kaye Swain Roseville CA REALTOR caregiver and social media blogger loves to visit a home decorating blog or other linky party like Oh-My-Heartsie-Girls-Wordless Wednesday

Christian REALTOR and blogger Kaye Swain visiting Create With Joy for Wordless-Wednesday-on Tuesday

My grandkids are learning to roller skate in my garage while it is too cold outside

Well, we still haven't had a huge amount of snow but it's definitely been cold outside. And rainy. And a bit slushy. Fortunately, I have a wonderful garage. And for the first time in my life, we've kept it fairly empty so that I can actually park my car in it! Which turned out to be an awesome gift the last few years when there WAS a lot of snow. It's so nice to walk out to the garage, get in the car, and not be freezing when I start it. 

Not only that! All I have to do is back my car out into the driveway and it becomes an wonderful scooter / roller skating rink for the grandkids on those days when it's too cold, too snowy, too wet – or for that matter, too hot, too smoggy…. It's WONDERFUL!

They get great exercise, my senior mom and I have fun watching, and they get to be involved in a fun and physical activity away from computers. As much as I love computers and iPhones, I still love that as well! 

We've been haunting our local Goodwill to find roller skates for the boys. At $3 a pop, I can easily afford them there and not have to worry about them outgrowing them. We have both regular roller skates and in-line roller skates, along with their scooters. My oldest grandson can use both types and does great. The younger two have had a bit harder time with the in-lines. That's where being in the Sandwich Generation can be a big help. We got out the walker my senior mom had to use last year and they have been using that to help keep their balance, the way my long distance grandkids use the sleds their ice skating rink provides. It's grand!

One of the advantages of being in the Sandwich Generation is having extra tools that can help grandkids as well as elderly senior parents

Have you tried scooters or roller skates in your garage with your grandkids? How do you like it? We'd love to hear. 🙂 In the meantime, I'm off to scout out more roller skates at a friend's Goodwill! 

Such fun for grandparents - in AND out of the Sandwich Generation - at Grandparents Say It Saturday Linky Party - Do Join in the fun

Fun for grandparents - in AND out of the Sandwich Generation - at Grand Social

Grand Social at Grandma's Briefs – Which is featuring one of my favorite fun holiday songs – What are you doing New Year's Eve – just as fun on New Year's morning! HAPPY NEW YEAR to y'all! 🙂