Tips to help prevent accidental phone calls to 911Have you ever called 911 accidentally? I have and feel so bad when it happened. False calls to 911 can mean delayed care to someone else who direly needs emergency services but is delayed getting through because of those false calls.

The first time it happened was with a Blackberry I bought as it was the only phone that would work in a ground floor apartment we were living in temporarily while selling our house.

I discovered that, while the Blackberry did work well in that apartment, it was too easy to call 911 accidentally when carrying it in my jeans pockets (my favorite spot for a cell phone) or in my purse. After 6 months, I had moved and no longer needed the keen reception of the Blackberry. I borrowed a loved one’s iPhone to test drive it, fell in love, and never looked back. But would you believe it, I do still have the Blackberry for dire cell phone emergencies or to loan friends and family.

This past week, I had a whole new iPhone 911 fiasco. I had actually called 911 on purpose to ask for help with a 9 volt battery that was overheating.  The fire department’s regular office was closed and their message directed me to call 911 which I did. They helped me and re-routed my call to the fire department who gave me the advice I needed. All was well…till the next day.

As many cell phone users know, calls we make stay in the recent call list. If you aren’t careful, you can accidentally click on and call one of those numbers without meaning to. That’s what I did – only this call was more than a nuisance. It was to 911. I apologized profusely and immediately after hanging up, I deleted that 911 phone number from my recents list.

As caregivers, many of us need to call 911 more than most. But with accidents a regular occurrence on the roads, and various other issues popping up, any or all of us can call 911 at times. So my suggestion is that anytime you may call 911 (or any other number you absolutely do not want to call back for whatever reason), be sure to go into your recents folder and delete that number so you can’t hit it accidentally.

For the iPhone, go to PHONE, RECENTS, EDIT, click the red circle with the minus sign on the left.  Then click DELETE. Then be sure to click DONE so you don’t accidentally erase calls you DO want to save.

how to delete a 911 call so you dont call it again by mistake

And if you’re wondering about the 9 volt battery issue that led to my 911 call…click here for the story – it’s a vital one for all of us and especially for grandparents and parents who deal with batteries for senior parents, grandkids, etc. 🙂

LIfe is full of twists, turns, and various crises. But making sure we don’t compound the issues with accidental phone calls to 911 can keep things a tiny bit more peaceful, don’t you think?

Fun for grandparents whether at home or out and about at the Grand Social

My senior moms plants are BLOOMING as these marigolds can attest to  FINALMy senior mom continues to enjoy her iPad. She's doing pretty well at looking at photos in the photo album and enjoying her books on tape. This past week, I really tried to encourage her to give her Kindle app a try but she was having a hard time with it and gave up fairly quickly. The siren call of her gardening activities was too strong to resist. 🙂

And since she is back to going great guns with her beloved plants, I went looking for some EASY garden blogs to read on the iPad. Ones that would show the whole article so I could just help her open it, click on the site, and voila! She could enjoy them. NOT SO EASY, I realized. I purposely keep my blog as simple as possible so hopefully it's easy for everyone to read. But so many blogs, nowadays, like the short synopsis style or the magazine style. They do look very nice. And for most of us, they are no problem to read. But for older seniors who are trying to learn new technology, they're not so great. (So if any of you have found any EASY garden blogs to read – do let us know in the comments.)

And this week, it wasn't just the Apple side of things I was working on. Another beloved senior bought an Android "Ice Cream Sandwich" cell phone and was struggling mightily to figure out how to use it. I suspect much of it is probably quite similar to the iPhone. But since she lives several hours away, I can't put that to the test right now. 

This stylus works great on my aging relatives LG cell phone with a capacitive screenAfter quite a bit of research though, we made a couple of great discoveries that have her smiling and learning away (and exercising her brain while she's at it 🙂 ). Her first frustration was the "virtual" keypad. She just didn't like it and asked, plaintively, "Why don't they have one of those fake pencils to use on it." Well, guess what! After a good-sized search, I discovered they DO have styluses (including cute pink ones) that work on her cell phone. (She uses an LG but these should apparently work on any cell phone or tablet that uses a capacitive touchscreen .) I ordered her a set, they arrived two days later, and she called me up with a HUGE smile in her voice to say they worked WONDERFULLY!

In the meantime, I had found two online magazine guides (including a handy handy "cheat sheet") to the Android as well as a great book with a TON of photos that should be a huge help to her.

With plenty of photos - this Android book should be a big help to any in our Sandwich Generation families using Androids - young or old - cell phone or tablets

She is very tech savvy for being in the mid-70s but this technology is definitely proving to be a steeper learning curve than in the past. I wish we lived closer so I could help her more. But I'm so glad she's excited about learning and having fun in the process. And that I could help her – and hopefully you as well – to learn it a bit easier. And YES – if you have any tips or suggestions for using the Android, we'd LOVE to hear those as well – just leave them in the comments too. 🙂 


Beverly's Got tons of cute pink things each Saturday to put a smile on the face of the Sandwich Generation dealing with the issues of caring for the elderly parents and babysitting grandchildren

Say it Saturday is a fun linkup for all of us boomers and seniors including grandparents writing about their grandkids

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


When traveling with elderly parents and or grandkids - stopping at Walmarts along the way is a safe way to exercise and enjoy healthy snacking 300Summertime isn't even here yet but don't say that in front of the weathermen! They'd totally disagree based on high temperatures and summer storms! Not to mention the fact that schools are out in most areas. And many families have hit the roads for vacation already. Including senior parents, grandparents, and grandkids. Sometimes all together. Sometimes to visit each other. Making this the perfect time to share some terrific travel tips we learned over the last year.

Today, I want to focus on seniors who may be traveling. Be sure to check back tomorrow for part 2, when its the grandkids on the move – often with grandparents. 🙂

I have to say, all of these ideas are wise for ALL ages, but we learned them during a couple of family reunions when seniors were on the way. 

Grandkid Joy license plate - available in Kentucky for any grandparent living there who wants it

  1. Send your itinerary and make/model of your vehicle along with the license number. Then, if you should have any kind of travel difficulties and can't get ahold of anyone, hopefully they can track you down. One of my beloveds was so smart – she just took photos of cars and license plates. Heaven forbid they ever have a dire emergency, those will be invaluable. (And isn't that a cute pink one from Kentucky – short for Grandkid Joy – And yes, it's currently available 🙂 )
  2. Whether flying, training, bussing, or driving, make sure you get up and walk around periodically. You'll be more comfy and your body will thank you! I go to the restroom so often, it's never an issue for me – on planes or driving. But both my senior moms have to remind themselves to do this. When my senior mom and I made our last long trip a few years ago, we discovered there are Walmarts EVERYWHERE. They are a wonderful stopping point every couple of hours because they have clean restrooms; usually have an eating place or you can buy fruit, cheese, crackers, bread, and drinks; they are big enough to give our legs a good walking in air-conditioned comfort; they have plenty of parking, all of which makes for a safe and comfortable place to get out and about. We had a grandchild with us, so they were doubly helpful to keep her stocked with something to read or more beads for the bead project she was working on.
  3. TRIPLE CHECK doors before you leave along with lights (we like the automatic on/off ones unless a neighbor is watching the house and will do that), refrigerator closed, water faucets and toilets all totally not running, etc. 
  4. FOURPLE CHECK to be sure you have your purse/wallet and cell phone with you. Without these, your trip will be a lot more difficult as one beloved uncle recently discovered.
  5. Call or text periodically to update at least one person who has your itinerary and let them know how you are doing and where you are. And again, without that cell phone – public phones are getting harder and harder to find! I'm not even sure Walmart has them anymore (do you know? If so, leave a comment to let us know 🙂 ). 
  6. Take plenty of water and snacks in your car along with a flashlight and other necessities for the road. 

Well, that's it for today. But if you have more suggestions, we'd love to hear them. And see you tomorrow with a REALLY cool suggestion for traveling with kids/grandkids – THEY will love you for it! 🙂 

Beverly's Got tons of cute pink things each Saturday to put a smile on the face of the Sandwich Generation dealing with the issues of caring for the elderly parents and babysitting grandchildren

Say it Saturday is a fun linkup for all of us boomers and seniors including grandparents writing about their grandkids

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


My grandkids and I think Minecraft is definitely fun but some simple how to help is always greatFor many grandparents, nowadays, Minecraft is a common word – though it may not be totally understood. For those who are unsure what it is or have never heard of it, don't feel bad. I hadn't either up until about four months ago. Then my grandsons discovered it and it often seems as though that's all I've heard about lately. 

Basically, it's a ginormous world(s) that they can build OR destroy which looks pretty much like LEGOs. When they play alone, they usually build and really enjoy it, peacefully. Here's a TALLLLL tower my grandson showed me how to build:

The fun Minecraft tower my grandchild created for me

When they play together, they often destroy – each others, as well as their own – and then seem to play less peacefully.

And when they play on one of the zillions (or so it seems) of online versions, they can run into anything from a group of Christians with positive rules, to a group of Minecraft zealots – often with positive rules  as well – mostly, to a group of, shall we say, not-so-nice zealots who may use bad language, horrific terror scenes and possibly even R or X rated material. In other words, like anything else on the Internet, careful supervision of our kids and grandkids is absolutely necessary. And that includes the zillions of YouTube videos they've found to help them learn how to do various things on this intriguing "game." 

Overall, I think it's Minecraft is a fun activity which requires cautious supervision, time limits, and definite rules about what they can watch, how they can play, and what they are allowed to do – just like anything else in life. 🙂 It is NOT, however, the kind of activity we busy parents and grandparents would love – you know, one we can just turn them over to so they can enjoy it for hours on end alone AND we can get a ton of work done. Sigh….Is there ever, really anything like that? 🙂

Because they were dying to play with each other but the easiest option for that was to play on other people's sites which required too much supervision, I decided to…GASP….figure out how to make my own server (hosted at at company that specializes in Minecraft servers), with our own personal Minecraft worlds. These multiplayer Minecraft worlds are just for them to use. And eventually, once the bugs are all out, maybe we'll be also be able to invite a few friends to join in our MInecraft fun. 

I did a ton of research, found some helpful articles from fellow parents and grandparents, as well as grand educational resources and suggestions from teachers using this in the classroom, like the Minecraft teacher and MinecraftEdu.

Since building a server of your own is primarily  geared for fellow geek-lovers, I'm not going to go into details here, but I will share some, bit by bit, at my Squidoo site – here.  However, for all of us grandparents there are some fun and easy ways to share our grandchildren's love of Minecraft and I'll be sharing some of those soon and periodically as we discover more fun and educational things of interest.

In the meantime, I'm curious. How many of your grandkids play Minecraft? What do you think about it? What do you like? Dislike? Have you never heard about it? I'd love to know…

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

Hip Homeschool Hop has great resources for grandparents and grandchildren - especially if you help with their homeschooling