On caregivers, faith, family, and writing…

Archive for November, 2013

I Am Still Thankful – Thanksgiving Photos | by Linda Brendle

A beautiful place to relax and reflect.

A beautiful place to relax and reflect.

David and I spent Thanksgiving Day with his family at his younger sister’s home. She and her husband have a beautiful place outside of town, away from the noise and chaos of civilization – the perfect place to pause and reflect on our many blessings. I made a quick sweep with my camera while last minute preparations were being made for lunch. As we joined hands to offer thanks, I put down my camera and recorded the meal and the naps and the football and the love in my heart. (more…)

Kids Are Thankful, Too | by Linda Brendle

Thank You God 2Last week at AWANA we did something different during lesson time. Instead of hearing a Bible story, the kids were given a chance to express their gratitude in creative ways.

The older ones – 3rd through 6th grades – were given pens, paper, and scissors and told to finish this sentence: I am thankful for… Here are a few examples. Many are very serious; others, not so much. And you can tell by the last two that we’re in Texas. (more…)

If You’re a Caregiver – Thank You | by Linda Brendle

In addition to being the month in which we celebrate Thanksgiving, November is National Family Caregiver Month. Caregivers are the unsung heroes who work quietly in the background, seeing that Dad’s bank account is in order, making sure Mom’s house is cleaned, being sure a loved one has a hot meal on the table. This special month shines a spotlight on those who give up so much and receive so little in return. If you’re a caregiver, take a few minutes to visit aarp.org/caregiving to see what resources are available to make your job a little easier. If you know a caregiver, take minute to say thank you. (more…)

A Short but Serious Quiz: Are You a Caregiver | by Linda Brendle

I’ve done several posts about how to know if you’re a caregiver. Several are humorous top ten lists (here and here), and one is a video by Jeff Foxworthy. Today’s post is on the more serious side.

Last week I received an e-mail from Sacha Evans of The Advertising Council. The Council is involved in a Caregiver Assistance campaign with AARP. Here’s an excerpt from her e-mail explaining why such a campaign is needed: (more…)

Feeling the Holiday Spirit | by Linda Brendle

The Ghost of Christmas Present

The Ghost of Christmas Present

Thursday afternoon I posted a “Bah Humbug” Facebook comment about a local radio station that has changed its format to all Christmas music for the duration. To say that my brother loves Christmas would be a huge understatement. In fact, he makes the Ghost of Christmas Present look like Scrooge, and he took exception to my comment and those of some of my friends. This was his last entry: Can anybody explain to my simple mind the abject travesty of playing Christmas music and putting up lights in the first half of November? I’m really having a hard time with all this negativity!

I started to respond, but realized it was going to involve more typing than I wanted to do on my phone, so I shifted into blogger mode and started thinking in terms of a post. After mulling through a few thoughts that seemed familiar, I realized that I wrote how I feel about the holidays in 2011. It was well received, so I posted it again last year. Now, for what is becoming a Life After Caregiving tradition, here’s the 3rd annual posting of “Feeling the Holiday Spirit.”


Yesterday one of my Facebook friends posted this question: Am I the only one not feeling the holiday spirit? I left a witty, social network kind of reply, but I’ve been thinking about it since then. Am I feeing the holiday spirit? My first question is which holiday are we talking about? My next question is what does the holiday spirit feel like? (more…)

An Angel Brought Me an (Almost) New Pair of Shoes | by Linda Brendle

Dr. Graves gave me this hot, heavy boot.

Dr. Graves gave me this hot, heavy boot.

I know I’ve focused a lot on my feet the last few months, but that’s what happens when you break an ankle. But last Friday, after 3½ months, the doctor pronounced me healed and let me exchange that ugly boot for regular shoes with the caveat that all those shoes must have flat heels. Since I’m somewhat height challenged and David is almost a foot taller than I am, all my shoes except for tennies and sandals have heels, so I went shopping.

I wanted something that would look good with either jeans or dress pants (I can’t tell you the last time I wore a skirt). What I really wanted was a pair of loafers. It was not to be. (more…)

Be Creative but Wary when Planning Activities for Alzheimer’s Patients | by Linda Brendle

Mom and me.

Mom and me.

When trying to decide what to write about this morning, I pulled out my “Sources” file and looked for ideas. After 300+ blog posts, it’s sometimes a challenge to come up with something new and fresh. There’s a new game on Facebook involving a list of things your friends might not know about you. I considered writing something like that, but at this point, anything I haven’t already written about myself is probably something I don’t want to reveal, so I went back to the file.


One item that caught my eye was an article on the Alzheimer’s Association website called “101 Activities.” It offers simple suggestions of things to do with your Alzheimer’ patient like listening to music, coloring a picture, or tossing a ball. There is no further explanation and no warning of how these simple activities might backfire. However, as you might imagine, I have a couple of tales that might give a caregiver pause before engaging in some of the activities. (more…)

Veterans Are Treated with Dignity in Emory, Texas | by Linda Brendle

The Rains County Courthouse located in Emory, ...

The Rains County Courthouse located in Emory, Texas, United States. The building was added to the National Register of Historic Places on May 1, 2003. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

History runs in cycles and so do attitudes toward veterans. When I was a kid, soldiers were respected, and even idolized, often portrayed as bigger-than-life characters on the silver screen. Then came the 60s and 70s, and young men returning from Vietnam were met with disrespect and even hostility. Instead of being welcomed home as heroes, they were spit on and villainized as warmongers and baby killers. More recently, especially after 9-11, attitudes have shifted back toward a more positive view of our military personnel.


But one thing that still seems to be lacking in our treatment of our veterans is dignity. In recent years, restaurants have used Veteran’s Day as an advertising ploy, competing to see who can offer the best special. Charities vie with one another to offer the most compassion to those who have been wounded or those who have lost loved ones in the defense of our country. Sometimes veterans are used as political pawns in heated campaigns. But there are still places where members of the military, past and present, are treated with dignity. Emory, Texas, is one of those places. (more…)

Senior Humor – Edition 21 | by Linda Brendle

I have good news and bad news. First, the good news. My ankle is now healed to the point that I am now wearing two shoes. (To read why I wasn’t, click HERE.) The bad news is that I am still sans computer. (To read about that, click HERE.) I managed a little time at David’s keyboard, so I thought I’d share a cute grandparent story about creationism versus evolution and a short video about caregiving by Jeff Foxworthy of “You Might Be a Redneck If…” fame. (more…)

Riddles, Giraffes, and Jesus | by Linda Brendle

giraffeI’m still having computer problems (see Monday’s post). David is making progress, but it still freezes up frequently. I’m holding my breath that it will cooperate long enough for me to post this article I wrote for Red Letter Christians. How about you? Did you fall for the riddle? And how would you answer Jesus’s question?


Anyone who spends any time at all on Facebook has seen a proliferation of giraffes on the site recently. For a few days, I noticed but didn’t pay much attention, but when one of my good friends turned into the long-necked, spotted creature, I read her status to see what was going on. It was a game based on a riddle. If I knew the answer, I was supposed to send it to her in a private message. If I got it right, she would acknowledge my intelligence in a comment under her status. If I got it wrong, I agreed to change my profile photo to a giraffe for 3 days. I’ve always been pretty confident of my intelligence, so I sent her what I was sure was the correct answer. My confidence was misplaced, and I was soon searching for a picture of just the right giraffe. (more…)

%d bloggers like this: