senior home care givers

The Baby Boomer Generation, caring for elderly parents, can enjoy this piece of good news. Via one of my favorite resources, Seniors For Living, I was very encouraged to read the headline that "this new 'CLASS Act' may relieve financial burdens for caregivers." Referring to the just signed Affordable Care Act, Joe LaGuardia explains that "the benefit, which is tucked in this rotund, controversial legislation, is called the CLASS Act.  The CLASS Act will establish a voluntary long-term insurance policy that pays cash stipends to people who become disabled or require long-term, in-home care." It's a very interesting and informative article and particularly useful for those caring for elderly parents. You can read the entire article at Caregiver Spirituality. Do check it out.

An interesting news video that came out earlier this year links Ibuprofen and Parkinson's Disease symptoms in a positive way. Early tests seem to indicate it can help ward it off. The video explains the details and the cautions about this intriguing possibility:

Watch CBS News Videos Online

Definitely some interesting and useful news and information for all of us in the Baby Boomers Generation caring for our beloved seniors! Until next time…

Ordering Huggies for grandkids using my Amazon Prime Discount Membership with free shipping is one of my favorite creative and practical ways to save moneyAre you Sandwich Generation senior home care givers and grandparents, involved in long distance grandparenting and/or caring for the elderly parents? I am right there with you on both counts! I spend quite a bit of time, energy and money each year sending boxes to several special people in my life. This includes books to encourage senior parents, diapers for baby grandchildren, clothes marked down to almost nothing that will fit my growing grandkids, etc. It definitely keeps me spending plenty of time at the post office!

Even with all the items I mail on my own, one of my best Sandwich Generation care giver tools is an Amazon Prime Discount Membership. With that, I get free 2-day shipping anywhere in the U.S. with the shipping box included! If it's a real rush, all I have to pay is $3.99 to get next-day mail. That is primarily Monday through Friday, though sometimes they do Saturday service – it seems to vary.

I can't tell you what a big stress reliever that was when I was dealing with far away elderly parents who got hit with a nasty flu bug. I was able to send some grocery items they needed but were unable to get because of being so sick. The box arrived at their front door, via UPS, the next day. It only cost me the $3.99 shipping and they were so comforted and encouraged by it! What a joy to be able to help them even though we live so far apart!

Vicks digital thermometers are a big help for the Sandwich Generation granny nanny both in caring for elderly parents AND babysitting grandchildrenThen there was the time my long distance grandkids were all sick with an especially bad strep throat going around. If that wasn't bad enough, they ended up giving it to their mom and dad who were equally miserable but working hard to be up and about taking care of the kids. I was able to send applesauce, a couple of videos to entertain the recouping grandkids, diapers and a book. It all got there in two days and the products didn't cost any more than if I'd bought them here locally. They helped to make everyone feel a bit better there and I didn't have to pay anything for shipping. Plus I didn't have to go out and shop, then come home and pack it all into a box I had to buy, THEN go back to stand in line at the post office AND pay for the shipping! Considering that my local grandkids, senior mom, and I were also battling a bug or two at that time, it was a tremendous help!

Those two examples, alone, would probably keep me using my Amazon Prime Discount membership for decades to come. But I get way more for my money than that! Some of the things I've done free this year include:

  • Sent birthday presents to grandkids, nieces, nephews, senior parents, and others
  • Ordered my favorite brand of bran several times this year. I haven't been able to find it since we moved, but thanks to Amazon and my Prime Discount Membership, I can still have it, right at my front door, for no extra cost!
  • Sent CDs full of encouraging praise and worship songs to cheer someone up
  • Got ink cartridges straight to my door and at a great price – perfect when I was too busy caregiving to make it to the store
  • Ordered Vitamin C for my senior mom and myself – we prefer the smaller tablets and haven't been able to find them locally. Amazon carries them for a great price and, of course, free shipping! 
  • Had fun spreading out a birthday for a special senior – I ordered books from four of her favorite authors. Two were already out, one was due out a month later, and the fourth was due out in March. I spent the time to order them all at once, Amazon sent them out as each book was published and, thanks to the Amazon Prime Membership, there are no shipping charges for any of the three shipments!  AND she gets these sweet treats of love throughout the year. 
  • Ordered wedding gifts for friends through Amazon. Because of Sandwich Generation juggling, I had misplaced the invitation and was really late with the gifts. Instead of ordering from the store they had registered at and then having my gift be REALLY late, I found the same item at Amazon, ordered it, and they got it in two days flat! Then I emailed their parents it was on the way so they could take it off their registry. I can't tell you how many times Amazon has saved me from being late! 🙂
  • Ordered my favorite lipstick when I couldn't find it at my local store. I'm still looking for it locally but it's so nice to know I can get it, and get it fast, from Amazon if I don't find it here. 

Now you see why I titled this Amazon Prime Discount Membership Reviews – not just review! I have put this great resource to the test so many times over the past three or so years I've had it and it is well worth the cost. It's worth it for anyone who uses Amazon and it's especially worth it for the ultra-busy Sandwich Generation senior home care giver and granny nanny. I'd much rather use my valuable time to be helping my sweet senior mom or an adorable grandkid, then standing in line at the post office – particularly when it's such creative and practical ways to save money! How about you? Had you ever wondered "What is Amazon Prime Discount Membership" when you saw it listed at their site? Have you ever tried it? We'd love to hear about it. 🙂

Book with wise words of encouragement and tips for those dealing with the Sandwich Generation issues of caring for the elderly parents - raising kids - or babysitting grandchildrenAs we well know, the Sandwich Generation is growing. Not only that! According to the Christian Broadcasting Network's interesting news video/article for boomers and seniors, Are You Caught in the 'Sandwich Generation," the Baby Boomer Generation is right in the heart of it all – something we had thought as well.

The video also includes an interview with Carol Abaya, one of the pioneer writers for the Sandwich Generation and its issues. She originally coined the phrase, Club Sandwich, which she describes in this video as, "more on a person's plate.  The adult children are caring not only for their aging parents, but also their grandparents, as well as their own kids." Or in my case, the generations go down instead of up – elderly parents and grandkids! 

I thought the advice to have all the legal paperwork completed was excellent. That will make everyone's life so much easier! I don't necessarily agree with the suggestion to never have the older parents move in with you, obviously, as that is exactly what I did. 🙂 I understand it can be challenging, but it can also be a blessing. And in this economy, it is definitely a money saver!

If your elderly parents do move in with you, or vice versa, you certainly need to make sure everyone has their "own space." That's been a big help to me.  Due to family needs in the last 10 years, my senior mom and I have lived in five different homes – from 2400 square feet houses down to 1100 square feet apartments. We've done ok in all the places, but the bigger houses were much easier for our Sandwich Generation issues – especially when the grandkids came over. In fact, when we were in the apartment, we set a limit of one grandkid per overnighter.  I just went to their house if I needed to watch more grandkids. I also work hard to make sure great-grandma gets plenty of visit time as well, but for shorter time periods, which works better for her needs. 

What about you? How are you dealing with the Sandwich Generation issuesAre you all in one house, long distance, or a combination, like me? How did you like the video? We'd love to hear from you! 🙂

Old-time TV. My senior parents grew up on it and my mom continues to enjoy the programs from back in the 40s and 50s. I still have fond memories of Our Miss Brooks and Father Knows Best. What I just learned was that apparently they. along with many other programs, started out on the the radio before eventually landing on TV where I discovered them. Even more interesting is that iTunes has a wide variety of these shows available for free! Perfect for a Sandwich Generation senior home care giver and grandparent.

While doing some research, I discovered Old Time Radio. Just go to iTunes, iTunes store, and in the top right search box, type in Old Time Radio. You should see a handful of the podcasts they offer along with the words "See All." Click "see all" and you will be delighted to see:

  • Old Time Radio Nostalgia
  • Old Time Radio Comedy
  • Old Time Radio Drama
  • Old Time Radio Mysteries
  • Old Time Radio Scifi
  • Old Time Radio Shows
  • Old Time Radio Thrillers
  • Old Time Dragnet
  • The Radio Adventures of Dr. Floyd
  • Boxcars711 Old Time Radio Pod
  • My senior dad's favorite genre – Westerns!
  • And so many others

Most are listed as Kids & Family, so I would assume they would, indeed, be fine for every age, but, of course, it's always wise to check them before letting the grandkids listen. All of the above have that listing except Dragnet, which is under Arts. There are several other options that are actually being developed as a current project, which may have more language and other issues than the "Old Time" shows, so we're sticking with the oldies. 🙂 

Just to give you a tiny flavor of what you will find:

  • Jack Benny
  • The Shadow
  • Superman
  • The Life of Riley
  • A Date with Judy
  • Maxwell House Coffee Time
  • Blondie
  • The Bob Hope Show
  • Fibber McGee and Molly
  • Family Theater
  • CBS Radio Mystery Theater
  • Dr. Kildare
  • Mister I.A. Moto
  • The Fat Man
  • The Falcon
  • Mystery Playhouse
  • Gangbusters
  • Inner Sanctum Mysteries
  • Hallmark Playhouse
  • And many, many more.

For a Sandwich Generation senior home care giver and grandmother, who is also a full-fledged member of the Baby Boomer Generation, these Old Time Radio Shows brought back so many fond memories, including times spent with my dad and mom when I was very young, laughing our heads off over Eve Arden and her co-stars in Our Miss Brooks. 

Best of all, they are all FREE (always one of my favorite ways to save money), and I've subscribed to most of them. Once a week, I go through and pick a few from each of the categories and copy them (burn them) to CDs for my senior mom to enjoy on her beloved CD player. She has throughly enjoyed them. They are bringing back terrific memories, giving her a nice alternative to TV re-re-reruns, and "exercising her brain" – always a good thing.

They are also handy for those times when I'm going to be away for longer periods. Making up several of these CDs gives my senior mom a special treat and the cost is low since a 50-pack of CDs runs me about $15, or less if I find them on sale. That's only about 30 cents per CD. iTunes is such a wonderful resource for all of us in the Sandwich Generation, from our oldest senior parents to our youngest little grandkids! I love that you can Download thousands of popular radio programs on iTunes. Not to mention great music, sermons, business podcasts, and so much more!  How about you? Have you found any other interesting  old-time radio or TV shows online? We'd love to hear about them.