Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Getting around town just got easier

I have been over looking around a site called PublicRoutes, and I'm loving it and wishing that I had found it before I went to Atlanta with my friends last September, or when we went to San Francisco a few years ago - might have saved us all that walking in the wrong direction to get where we had wanted to go. LOL Was a fun walk anyway, but I'm sure I speak for us all when I say that we really would have preferred to have not taken that wrong turn.

PublicRoutes has maps for all sorts of cities in addition to Atlanta and San Francisco, places like one that I have wanted to go see for years, Boston MA, and one I know first hand is hard to find your way around in, Seattle WA.

I've been looking at the Boston area map, but I have to know where things are before I look them up on the site so it makes things a little slow. Need a good way for someone like me, that is unfamiliar with the city but wants to visit it, to find great places to check out while I am there.

I like their direction though, I called up walking directions from the Knob Hill Hotel to Ghirardelli Square in San Francisco and got a nice map showing the route and information on walking distances, and details for shopping, dining, and attractions around both the start point and the destination point.

This would be great for anyone that lives in or near a city as well, since you can get not only directions for various methods of getting around (walking, driving, rail, transit, or bus), but also find information on local traffic conditions thanks to a traffic alert bar near the top of the screen for each individual city.

This site looks to me like an all around handy resource to check before you go, whether you are traveling or just going into the city for a few hours.

This has been a paid post for PublicRoutes

Poor Harry needed a little doctoring

I turned into a vet last night. My poor kitty, Harry Potter, who I believe I mentioned back when I was working on my taxes, has a new injury that was cause we think by a fight he got into with a tomcat someone dumped off in our yard. Rural area so that is not exactly an uncommon thing to have happen.

Anyway, the injured paw got an infection in it and last night I had to get Harry settled down on the bathroom counter and administer first aid. I have to say that the cat is the most amazingly trusting of felines I have ever encountered. It sounded like Pet Cemetery in there with all of the "Yoooooowwwwwwlllll"s and "rrrrrooowwwwwwwwwwwww"s, but Harry was very very patient and trusting of what I was doing to him and even though he had the chance three times to have my hand in his teeth, actually in the teeth and ready to be torn off, he did not so much as leave a scratch mark on the skin or anything and never once threatened to swipe at me with his claws (which had not been trimmed yet because of his hurt paw).

I got him all doctored up though, putting peroxide on the injury because that's what all the cat sites I have visited have said to do for a cat with a wound. Then I put a bandage on him to keep the wound clean. Then, to protect the bandage from him pulling it off and him from swallowing infection stuff or licking up any remaining peroxide, I took the top off a large plastic 5 quart ice cream container and cut a collar sized hole in the middle with a sheet rock knife. That slipped over his head and prevented him from licking at the injury.

This morning I removed the collar and bandaging and gave the kitty a bath to clean him up. He was not amused, but again he took it with as much decorum as a cat can when subjected to such things. I'm amazed at how fast cat hair can dry, it did not take very long for him to be all dry once again. The below picture was taken around 5 minutes after the bath.


Monday, May 28, 2007

All inclusive vacation

Getting out and relaxing is something that is not just nice, it is a job requirement for the full-time family caregiver. You need to get out and have some me time every once in a while to recharge yourself and be ready to get back into the swing of being a caregiver without taking a swing at something.

That is why I think it is a good idea to look into taking vacations that are out of the normal grind as much as possible. Something say like a dominican republic all inclusive vacation? All Inclusive is good because then someone else is worrying about the details like hotel and stuff. Caregivers worry about enough and especially if you are taking along your care recipient you want as few things for you to worry about as possible.

If you're planning a vacation, then take a peek at the all inclusive vacation packages available at They have great package deals to places like Crete in Greece, the Dominican Republic, Grand Cayman Island, Sandpiper FL and many, many more. You can get savings on these all inclusive packages too, savings of up to 50% off regular rates.

And don't forget to check out the virtual tours. They also have resort ratings by travelers that have been there so you know what others think about the place. You can also find out about the customs, culture, history and activities at their website.


The preceding has been a paid post for

This blog post was based on information provided by Blogitive. For more information, please visit

I'm making a story blog

I've been working on plans to make a blog that will be a story blog where I will write a story out and people can read through it as I post to it and offer suggestions on what it is that they think should be happening in the story. I've started putting it together now, decided to resurrect an old short story that I had wrote a long time ago and use it as the start of the story. It will, of course, be in a fantasy setting, but I already have plans for a couple of other stories in other settings. We'll see how people like the idea.

My shoulder has been sore all day

I woke up this morning with a really sore and stiff left shoulder, the stiffness and pain radiated up into my neck even. Right now, as I am getting ready to shut off the computer and go to sleep, my shoulder still hurts just as much as it did this morning when I got up. :-/

I'm not sure just what it was that I did to the poor thing, possibly it was cause by my helping dad walk and his weight being on it. I'm not sure. Whatever it was, I'm hoping a warm water bottle will help it out.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Gold Investments

Gold wraps around the finger of most married couples as a promise of love lasting forever. It is a metal that has held the hearts and desires of men since they first laid eyes on the beautiful metal. The cool weight of the metal in your hand is unlike anything else. The history of gold is entwined into man's quest for riches and few things that have inspired men's desire like gold.

If you desire investing in gold, then the Monex Deposit Company can help you. They have hard asset professionals ready to help you with your investment in gold and other precious metals. Whether you are seeking to diversify your investment portfolio, or to begin an investment in your future, they can help you in the purchase gold coins or ingots.

Coins, which are actually defined as ingots, have a currency value while the true ingot are generally gold ingots of pure bullion that is cast in a convenient size and shape.

In business for over 30 years, Monex is a name that you can trust when investing in precious metals. They are America's best dealer and have competitive precious metals prices.

The preceding has been a paid post for the Monex Deposit Company

This blog post was based on information provided by Blogitive. For more information, please visit

Hoping for clear skies this weekend

It is hard to tell right now if the day is going to clear off and be a nice day, or if it is going to be overcast and dreary like the rest of the week has been. Being Memorial Day Weekend I can imagine there are a lot of people out there hoping for clear skies for the weekend.

If you're on the road this weekend, please, drive carefully and have a safe weekend.

Monkfish Recall - do not eat imported fish labeled as monkfish


The FDA has issued a warning to consumers not to eat imported fish labeled as monkfish.

It seems that there is a risk that it may actually be possibly improperly prepared puffer fish, and two people in the Chicago area became ill after consuming homemade soup containing the fish. One was hospitalized due to severe illness.

A total of 282 22-pound boxes labeled as monkfish were distributed to wholesalers in Illinois, California and Hawaii beginning in September 2006.

There are strict provisions in the importation of puffer fish into the U.S. to minimize the possibility of the presence of the deadly toxin tetrodotoxin, however, there have been mislabeled fish imported and distributed by Hong Chang Corp., Santa Fe Springs, Calif.

You can read more about the fish recall on my Diet Tracker blog.

Debt consolidation [paid ad]

Being a family caregiver and being in debt seems to go hand in hand. It starts out with a few bills that you can't keep up with, then slowly there are more and more. Credit cards and unpaid bills pile up around you.

Are you interested in ways that you might be able to consolidate your debit to help you in lowering your monthly bills?

Maybe you are looking for a home equity debt consolidation, or bad credit debt consolidation? If you own a home you can consolidate you debits quickly and easily using the equity that you have in your home, or find out how to raise your credit score by consolidating credit debt.

CircleDebt can help you lower your bills and consolidate debt, helping you to get out of debt as quickly as possible. Visit their website to read articles written by industry professionals and find tools to help you calculate your financial situation.

Don't let the bad debts add to your stress, find out how you can consolidate your debts and make your monthly bills easier to handle.

The preceding has been a paid post for CircleDebt

This blog post was based on information provided by Blogitive. For more information, please visit

Andy Griffith - There is a Time lyrics

I was in watching The Andy Griffith show for just a few minutes before turning off the front room television, the episode "The Darling Baby" was on with The Dillards. I love the song that the girl sang, "There is a Time". I decided to go find the lyrics for it and since I hunted them down I will share them here too.

There is a Time

There is a time for love and laughter
The days will pass like summer storms
The winter wind will follow after
But there is love and love is warm

There is a time for us to wander
When time is young and so are we
The woods are greener over yonder
The path is new the world is free

There is a time when leaves are fallin'
The woods are gray the paths are old
The snow will come when geese are callin'
You need a fire against the cold

So do your roaming in the springtime
And you'll find your love in the summer sun
The frost will come and bring the harvest
And you can sleep when day is done

Reminders program I've been trying out

I got a new bit of software that is little motivation pop-ups in the corner of my screen and I have been playing with creating various backdrops for it. I was playing around with some for remembering things pertaining to family caregiver stuff and these are two samples that I came up with... I like this little program and am still investigating if it has hidden flaws. It claims it has no spy or ad ware. If you'd like to check the program out for yourself I have written a review on it on my Diet Tracker blog, as well as putting up more samples of backdrop images I have made for the program.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Television and DVD converter for iPod

Being a caregiver means never having the time to get everything done. One of the first sacrifices that are made seems to be things that were once enjoyed as relaxing entertainment, such as having the time to watch favorite TV shows or movies.

Instead the time is taken over by sitting waiting at doctors offices and catching a few minutes of "me" time here and there throughout the day.

Imagine being able to convert your favorite TV shows and DVDs to play on your iPod, to be able to watch television shows and movies anywhere anytime.

You can get a free trial of the iPod software that allows you to convert television and DVDs to a high quality video format that makes it possible to watch on your iPod.

Take your favorite television series along with you to doctors appointments, lengthy tests and physical therapy sessions. Have a favorite movie ready to watch as you wait for prescription refills or sneak a few minutes to watch the news on your iPod while out on a fishing trip.

With an iPod and this software there will never again be a problem with not being able to keep up on the television shows and movies you love because you can take them along and catch up on it when and where you have the time.

The software offers free trial and if you decide to purchase it is only $39.95 to buy, then you can convert an unlimited number of DVDs and videos for transfer to your iPod.

This post is a paid ad for pqdvd



The stress of stuff is giving me a massive headache today, so I have decided to fight back by locking myself away in my bedroom to work and turning my radio on very low so that I can create a sort of white noise to drown out the sounds in the rest of the house. So far it's working okay, now if I can just get work to go semi smoothly I will maybe still have a shred of sanity when the day is over.

We'll see.

It's just one of them days where I wanna start screaming and see if the world will back off and leave me be for a few. You know the ones, the "STOP POKING ME!!!" days that you just want to kick back and drift off to sleep and let the day go on without you.

The Police CD and tour

I grew up in the 70's and 80's. A time when MTV was just barely finding its footing in the world of music and bands like the Police were dominating the airwaves. Songs such as Spirits in the Material World and Every Breath You Take were played over and over, the lyrics memorized and the songs sung along to.

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the band's release of Roxanne, the single that is responsible for their being picked up for a record deal with A&M Records. Released in April 1978, Roxanne was only the start.

Now, 30 years later, their music is still widely popular and the recent release of the police cd has brought together 28 of their songs into a CD collection that anyone that loves their music is going to want. I know I want it.

Songs on the 2 disk CD set are:

The Police
Track Listings

Disc: 1
1. Fallout
2. Can't Stand Losing You
3. Next to You
4. Roxanne
5. Truth Hits Everybody
6. Hole in My Life
7. So Lonely
8. Message in a Bottle
9. Reggatta de Blanc
10. Bring on the Night
11. Walking on the Moon
12. Don't Stand So Close to Me
13. Driven to Tears
14. Canary in a Coalmine

Disc: 2
1. Do Do Do de da da Da
2. Voices Inside My Head
3. Invisible Sun
4. Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic
5. Spirits in the Material World
6. Demolition Man
7. Every Breath You Take
8. Synchronicity I
9. Wrapped Around Your Finger
10. Walking in Your Footsteps
11. Synchronicity II
12. King of Pain
13. Murder by Numbers
14. Tea in the Sahara

One of the reasons that I would love to get a copy of the police cd is the complaint that I have about their tour. They're not coming to Alaska. ::pouts:: Why is it that none of the bands I love ever seem to think to make Anchorage Alaska a stopover on their tours? I can't afford to make the trip to where they are, I'd love to, but airfare is over $1,000.00 and then you have to add in things like hotel and food and transportation and concert tickets... being a full-time caregiver I just don't have that kind of money (or time). So I need a Police CD.

This post is sponsored by

MacGyvering the tire on my ATV trailer

I took off on my ATV yesterday to get diesel fuel for the heater, couple of cans tucked away in the trailer hooked onto the back of the bike. Got about three fourths of the way to the station and the tire came off the trailer.

Not good. I went back and retrieved the tire and lifted the trailer out of the dirt and examined the situation. The cotter pin that holds the tires on the trailer had come out and the washer was missing. Definitely not good. Thankfully I am not the sort to just toss up my hands and cry help. I dug out my tool box, used the rinky dink little soon to be replaced pliers that came with my ATV to unfasten a link from the section of dog chain I had been using to make sure my tool box don't walk away on it's own.

A few moments of bending and one side of the link was straightened out. I then got the dirt all wiped off the axle and outta the wheel and slipped the wheel in place, slipped the piece of dog chain into the hole for the cotter pin and bent the end of it with the pliers.

I took it slow, just a couple miles an hour, and even though I am a strong advocate of keeping ATVs and dirt bikes off the bicycle path I kept to the smooth paved path to the service station and then back home. There was a lot of rubbing wear on the fix, but it made it just fine.

Never insult someone because they watched MacGyver as they were growing up. ::snerk::

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Orlando Vacation [paid post]

Looking for a great place to take your care recipient on vacation? Orlando is not just a place for the kiddies, there is a lot to Orlando for adults too. Stuff like the Charles Hosmer Museum of American Art - which has the largest collection of Tiffany glasswork on display. Or how about Kennedy Space Center for the space enthusiast? Or you can go and pay a visit to a few of the area's top rated golf courses. Go out shopping and afterward enjoy one of the great dinner shows.

There is so much to see that want to be sure to take advantage of the travel guide that has to offer tips on entertainment, dining, nightlife and more. Check out the hotels in orlando that offers - They claim to have the most comprehensive travel and vacation arrangements in Orlando.

With all the shopping, theme parks, golf courses, and great places to eat there is no better vacation destination for adults as well as kids than Orlando Florida.

The preceding has been a paid post for

This blog post was based on information provided by Blogitive. For more information, please visit

I have to wake up early, so I get up before the alarm goes off

Finding the time to do things is not easy, but it can be done. Trying to get up an hour earlier than necessary so that you can work in the things you want to get done in the day is one of the hardest ways, but it has the best results of any other method I have found. The trick is that you have to get to bed as early as you can the night before, or you'll just be slapping the snooze button every time the alarm goes off. And if your clock is like mine, after the 5th slap the thing decides you mean it and don't goo off again. Which means that you sleep till noon instead of waking at 6am as planned.

This morning I set two alarms and then ended up waking up before either one went off. Still don't know how that works, woke up 10 minutes before the first was set to go off. ::shakes head::: Shame I can't do that every day.

Perfect day for an electric fireplace

The morning is a cold and foggy one, which makes it a perfect morning to turn on the electric fireplace and let it warm the place up. There's nothing like a little crackling fire, I just wish that the thing had been designed with sound effects of a crackling fire. Ah well, one of these days I'll get around to creating a CD of a crackling fire that can be played in a CD player at it. I wonder if them scent story things by Glade come in "Morning campfire" scent? LOL

Monday, May 21, 2007

Symark Software's PowerBroker and PowerPassword-User Management Edition [paid post]

I grew up around computers, my dad having been a programmer for as far back as I can recall. Because of that intimate knowledge with the simple truth that to err is human nd to really mess things up you need a computer, I am not surprised when I hear that there are inherent security gaps in over 30 versions of UNIX and Linux systems.

Gaps such as those can pose a significant threat to IT environments. Thankfully for so many that rely on these systems those security gaps were addressed by Symark Software's PowerBroker and PowerPassword-User Management Edition (UME) access control solutions. If you want to find out more about this Identity Management System and how they can help protect your IT environments, visit the Symark Software website.

These new HP Integrity servers combine best-of-breed functionality with ease-of-use to help you safeguard proprietary information and comply with federal and industry regulations. You are provided with Access Control capability. This means that you can keep your IT environment safe and secure despite the inherent security gaps that may exist in your version of UNIX or Linux.

If you run a business that may be at risk, don't delay, see what Symark Software can do for you.

This post was a paid advertisement for Symark Software

This blog post was based on information provided by Blogitive. For more information, please visit

Caregiver exercise

I know that it can be hard to find the time to exercise when you are a caregiver, believe me - I know. But you need to work in at least a few hours of "me" time each week to get in exercise because the wight will slowly build up unnoticed until you have no choice but to notice it and by then it can be very difficult to loose.


Relaxation Tip - Yoga

If you have never tried Yoga before, you might consider trying a few simple moves as part of a relaxation exercise to help you ease away stress. I'm not very well versed in Yoga, so I suggest watching a fitness program that incorporates it as part of the cool down session, or search online for basic Yoga exercises. This can be a great way to limber up and clear your mind in the mornings before you get to work on the day's duties.


Directory of Schools [paid post]

With all the things that you have to do in a day, and the national average for gas being over $3 a gallon, there is just not enough time or money to drive to a traditional college for classes. That is one of the reasons why people are turning more and more to the for continuing education courses.

One problem facing those wishing to learn online is the large number of schools to choose from. How do you pick the one that is right for you? The Directory of Schools can help you sort through the various schools that offer online education and pick the one that is best suited to your goals.

Whether you want to learn about fashion design or website design, the Directory of Schools can help you narrow your search. There are many programs to choose from when you are looking through their website at the online schools, so you will want to get a cup of coffee and a little free time and just browse around to see what looks good to you.

And you don't have to worry about the schools on The Directory of Schools website, the Directory of Schools is dedicated to ensuring the excellence of the schools they partner with and use in-house verification to review accreditation or vocational industry standards relevant to each school.

This post was a paid ad for the Directory of Schools

This blog post was based on information provided by Blogitive. For more information, please visit

From mean dogs to lovable cats

My cat Harry often sleeps at the foot of my bed, but tonight I have been pulling an all-nighter and he's not feeling good so without me to sleep with he went in and crawled up in the end of my dad's bed. I walked past and saw something looked outta place, stepped back and looked again and there is Harry, just one paw and his head showing under the blanket by my dad's feet. Such a cute and oh so adorable site. Makes me sad I pulled an all-nighter and he didn't have his normal sleeping spot at my feet.

Nephew's dog nearly took off my thumb

It seems that there are times when it just don't pay to be the nice guy that takes care of things. Just about dusk last night one of my nephew's dogs busted its chain. The dog was out there running around with about a 5 foot length of chain dragging behind it. So, like a good aunt, I went out to tie the dog back up before it got into trouble.

Unfortunately the cats decided that it was a good time to put a sneak attack on the dog's food into action. The dog, of course, did not approve of the cats' plan.

Cats went flying in assorted directions as the dog did what dogs do and jumped into a fast lunge to go after the cats. Of course the maneuver was timed to coincide with my trying to secure the chain on a snap deal, so when the chain jerked free of my hand it tried to take my right thumb with it. That thumb is now all skinned on the inner edge of the first knuckle, which leaves me typing one handed with my left hand.

What is truly bad is that I still have several hours of typing work to do and tomorrow I have to make some strawberry beds. When I was in town earlier I got some cement to use in making stone retaining walls around an electric pole set up on a hill in the yard. The stone walls will reinforce the slope so it don't erode away and the strawberries... well, they're for eating.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

LAP-BAND system for weight loss [sponsored post]

Working as a freelance writer, I find myself called to write about a wide range of things. One of my projects has been to write a series of articles for my weight loss blog on the various weight loss options and profiling diet plans. The first article that I have written in the series is on the LAP-BAND® System for laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding. This was a procedure that I had always thought of as being something that was highly risky or a fad, never really considering it to be an option that anyone should actually consider. That view changed during my research into just what the LAP-BAND® System is and what studies have been done on the system.

Studies by places such as the Monash University Medical School in Melbourne, Australia, and independent U.S. clinical trials by the FDA, that have shown that the LAP-BAND® System is more effective in treatment of significant obesity than nonsurgical alternatives such as very-low-calorie diets, pharmacotherapy, and lifestyle changes.

The Monash University Medical School study, conducted in 2006, showed that surgical treatment using laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding had significantly better results than nonsurgical alternatives in the level of weight loss, improvement in quality of life, and resolving the metabolic syndrome.

The study divided 80 subjects into two groups of 40 subjects each and showed that the surgical group had a weight loss of 21.6% of initial weight, 87.2% of excess weight. The nonsurgical group showed weight loss of 5.5% of initial weight and 21.8% of excess weight. Metabolic syndrome was initially present in 15 (38%) patients in each group, after 24 months it was present in 1 (3%) of the surgical subjects, 8 (24%) nonsurgical subjects. Quality of life was also significantly improves in the surgical (8 of 8 subscores) as opposed to the nonsurgical (3 of 8 subscores) group.

There are a number of facilities that specialize in surgical weight-loss, including the fast growing network of Journey Lite surgical facilities. Journey Lite has highly skilled and experienced bariatric surgeons and a team of healthcare professionals that are dedicated to providing lapband procedures, seen as the safest and least invasive surgical weight-loss solution, and providing the most comprehensive support programs available today.

The LAP-BAND® procedure is intended for severely obese patients with Body Mass Index (BMI) of at least 40, those with a BMI of at least 35 with one or more severe conditions in addition to the obesity, or those who are 100 lbs. or more over their estimated ideal weight. There are multiple reasons why a patient that meets the above criteria may otherwise be unsuited to the LAP-BAND® procedure, including the presence of severe cardiopulmonary diseases, inflammatory diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, or patients who have exhibited a pain intolerance to implanted devices.

If you are considering the use of laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding to assist you in significant weight loss you should research the procedure through sites such as the Journey Lite website ( and consult your doctor to find out if the LAP-BAND® procedure is right for you.

This post was sponsored by Journey Lite

This blog post was based on information provided by Blogitive. For more information, please visit

Governor Palin proclaims May to be Older Americans Month in Alaska

The following is a press release that was issued in mid April by Governor Sarah Palin. I find it curious that my inquiry, which preceded the gubernatorial elections, was completely ignored by someone that is now proclaiming May to be Older American's Month in Alaska. Perhaps I should send her another e-mail asking about her views on providing assistance to family caregivers?


Alaska is home to more than 71,500 citizens 60 years of age or older. The older citizens of Alaska are increasing each year, representing a dramatic trend in our nation’s demographic composition.

A growing number of baby boomers are rapidly becoming older citizens, and the number of individuals providing care to senior family members and friends is expanding significantly.

Older people are diverse, respected citizens who continue to contribute to our state’s social and economic well-being.

The opportunities and challenges that lie ahead require us to think differently about health and long-term care, and work together to rebalance and modernize our current systems so that we may adequately plan for and address the needs of current and future generations.

Older people are entitled to live lives of dignity and independence through:

Streamlined access to information and community services.

Information about cost-effective prevention practices and activities that will improve health and quality of life.

Innovative, affordable options for care and support that will provide an array of choices about how and where to live.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Sarah Palin, Governor of the State of Alaska, do hereby proclaim May 2007 as:

Older Americans Month in Alaska

in Alaska, and urge all citizens to honor older adults, and those who care for them, during May and throughout the year. We urge all to promote and participate in activities that contribute to helping older Americans make choices for a healthy and rewarding future.

Dated: April 20, 2007

Social Security Caregiver Credit Act of 2007

I went over to the Thomas search engine to check up on H.R. 1161, this is Social Security Caregiver Credit Act of 2007, which is seeking to amend title II of the Social Security Act to credit prospectively individuals serving as caregivers of dependent relatives with deemed wages for up to five years of such service. The Social Security Caregiver Credit Act of 2007 is still caught up inside the Committee on Ways and Means, where it has lain since February 16, 2007.

I fear for this poor bill as that is where H.R. 175, the Family Caregiver Security Act of 2005, found its demise.


Wednesday, May 16, 2007

It's not yet too late to send a Mother's Day Gift Basket

We all know that moms are very special people. We have a day set aside just to show them how special they are to us. Whether they are our biological mother or the woman that raised us without blood ties, we cherish her because she was always there. Mother, step-mother, grandmother... whatever her role in the family she was always the one that took care of us, believed in the power of our dreams and pushed us to be the best we could be.

Did you know that Mother's day style celebrations date as far back as ancient Greece? According to Gourmet Gift Baskets, the ancient Greeks would hold celebrations dedicated to Rhea, the Mother of the Gods, and offer up honey-cakes, fine drinks and flowers at dawn as a tribute.

Gifts of flowers or gift baskets have for years been one of the most popular gifts for Mother’s Day. An elegant thank you to the woman that gave so much. Do you want to give an extra special Mother's Day Gift? At Gourmet Gift Baskets you can customize your Mother’s Day basket with the foods that you know she loves. Is your mom a diabetic or have other dietary needs? Customized gift baskets are the perfect answer to those baskets that you buy in the supermarkets.

Gourmet Gift Baskets know that you care, and that’s why they’re searching for the perfect Mother’s Day gifts to help you show her how much she means, on Mother's Day and every day of the year. Hurry, because it's not yet too late to send your mom something truly special as a belated Mother's Day gift.

This post is sponsored by Gourmet Gift Baskets

This blog post was based on information provided by Blogitive. For more information, please visit

Kathrine Hepburn Syndrome

Something that you don't hear a lot about is a condition that is commonly mistaken for Parkinson's Disease and only known about because of the high celebrity status of it's namesake. Kathrine Hepburn Syndrome is marked by the shaking of the head and hands that the actress was so known for in later years.

I've looked for information on the condition and found little aside from an article in the Harvard Health website about "Essential tremor".

If anyone knows anything about Kathrine Hepburn Syndrome I would really like to find out more sources for information on this condition. Thank you!

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Lonnie Ali champions the "FIGHT FOR MORE" campaign

A little while ago I was looking around on the GoFish website for things on caregivers and I found this video where Lonnie Ali champions the "FIGHT FOR MORE" campaign.

Lonnie Ali is the wife of Muhammad Ali and is seeking to help raise awareness for those with Parkinson's and the family members that provide care for them.


Search engine marketing [paid post]

There is little argument that Google is the top ranking search engine. Surveys show that they hold well over 50% of the market for search engine traffic with Yahoo at a distant second followed by MSN. The remaining search engines fall into line behind MSN with varying percentages of the market share around and under 2% each.

In a recent survey, over 40% of those questioned said that they found the website they made a purchase at through a search engine, nearly half as many guessed at the URL with various other marketing sources (including television advertisements) falling well behind guesswork.

With that large of a market relying on search engines it only makes sense for your website to rely on search engines for visitors. When you are working on your search engine marketing for your website, you will first want to seek one-way links back to your website from quality websites that compliment your own site. This is known as link building and is one of the best ways to raise your website to the top of the natural listings on search engines.

Another way to gain the higher rankings and more site visitors is through pay-per-click listings. Something that many people don't realize when they are looking into pay-per-click advertising is that there is a difference in cost between key phrases. If you target only a small number of the most popular keywords, then you are probably paying more than you need to for keyword advertising. By changing the key phrase just slightly you can save on key phrase advertising expenses and target more of them. For example: target people searching for 'family caregiver group' instead of 'family caregiver support'.

You want for your site to rank well for various search terms describing your specific website's offerings and, if applicable, your geographic location. For example a senior healthcare provider in Denver Colorado would want to not only be listed for "Senior healthcare in Denver" but also terms such as "Denver seniors" or "Denver healthcare".

This post is sponsored by Customer Magnetism

This blog post was based on information provided by Blogitive. For more information, please visit

Social Security Caregiver Credit Act of 2007 ( H. R. 1161)

Well, H.R. 1161 is still trapped in the House Committee on Ways and Means and has no co-sponsors. This is frustrating, the government is highly grateful to have us family caregivers, but they have no reason to pay any attention to what we give up to provide the care we provide. We're not recognized as being true care providers to them and have none of the rights that care providers have - not even the right to have social security.

H.R.1161 - Social Security Caregiver Credit Act of 2007
Title: To amend title II of the Social Security Act to credit prospectively individuals serving as caregivers of dependent relatives with deemed wages for up to five years of such service.
Sponsor: Rep Lowey, Nita M. [NY-18] (introduced 2/16/2007) Cosponsors (None)
Latest Major Action: 2/16/2007 Referred to House committee. Status: Referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means.


PBS: “Follow That Bill” Legislation Watch

I was looking for more information on Family Caregiver bills and I found this site on the website: “Follow That Bill” Legislation Watch

The information on the page appears to be old, but I want to be able to find this page again to help me with plans I have for how to help get some awareness raised to the issues facing caregivers. If anyone knows of anything like this that is more recent please let me know. Thanks!


Tuesday, May 15, 2007

uTango Rewards Program [sponsored post]

As a full-time family caregiver, I am always looking for something that can help me out with my retirement. That is what drew my attention to the utango rewards program. I was skeptical at first, uncertain of just what it was they had to offer, but after looking at the site I am starting to think it is sounding more and more like something that I would be interested in looking into as a possible source of money for retirement.

Membership at uTango is free, and members can earn annual cash back bonuses of up to $200 and lifetime cash payouts of up to $1 million. That sounds to me like one heck of a deal. Particularly when I took a look at some of the merchants they have up for offer. Barnes and Noble (who I shop at already), Dell (who I plan to start shopping at) and eBay who I use a lot. In fact, there are nearly 300 popular online stores where purchases earn members TANGO Bucks (points) towards cash rewards.

I'll just need now to double check that purchases made with PayPal are okay and earn TANGO Bucks (points), but since they include eBay as one of the places you can earn I don't see that as being a problem. And lets face it, who can't use an extra million when they retire?

I'm still sorting through the rules and regulations, which are different for if you're single, engaged or newlywed (married less than 3 years - they're apparently working on something for people married longer than three years), so I'll let you read through their information on your own to decide of the utango rewards program is a good deal for you or not. I'm definitely looking into it though, since I plan to do a lot of shopping online this year and in years to come. Might as well get rewarded for it, huh?

I can easily see how fast points could add up when shopping for birthdays and mother's day and father's day and Christmas and don't forget little gifts for special things like National Family Caregiver's Month. ;-) I like shopping online because it is a lot better than fighting through traffic and other shoppers at the store, you get what you want without having to settle for what's in stock and you can avoid the hassle of driving all over looking for the perfect gift.

This post is a paid advertisement for uTANGO

Focused yard work to make it easier to keep up with

Me and my mom were talking the other night about the planting in the yard. We're going to be focusing our efforts on getting just a few easy to access areas planted and not worry about the areas that are harder to get to or that we won't be able to enjoy at least every few days. By focusing our efforts on just the front yard area and putting lawn in the remaining parts of the yard we can enjoy a much nicer looking front yard than if we tried to stretch our efforts to the entire front, back and side yard areas.

I'll be prettying up out by the pond, but I'm not going to plant anything else out there. It will be going this year on the perennials that were planted out there in the past. Right now there are a bunch of iris out there, so that should be enough with the ferns and wild rose that are behind the older pond.

I need to get some lawn seed and repair patches in the back lawn and maybe run lawn around the end of the house this year. Otherwise all efforts will be focused on a area just off the porch and on planters along the porch.

J.G. Wentworth Life Settlements (DE), LLC now purchases life insurance policies

I'm sure that you've seen commercials for J.G. Wentworth on television. For over 15 years they have been purchasing annuities and structured settlements. In their commercials they offer lump sums of cash now to purchase annuities or Structured Settlements at J.G. Wentworth. Now, the nation's largest purchaser of future payments, also purchases life insurance policies.

Through their newest subsidiary, J.G. Wentworth Life Settlements (DE), LLC, they purchase life insurance policies from consumers. The owners of life insurance policies that were never used either allow them to lapse or surrender them to the insurance company for a cash surrender value. J.G. Wentworth Life Settlements (DE), LLC offer insurance owners the option to sell their policies in exchange for a lump sum of cash, that is typically more than the cash surrender value that may be offered by the insurance company.

If you are considering selling a life insurance policy you will want to do careful research into the process, as the transfer process for life insurance policies varies depending on individual situations and state laws. J.G. Wentworth Life Settlements (DE), LLC can help you sort through the options and laws and determine what is best for your individual situation.

Two frequently asked questions from their website are "What is a life settlement?" and "Do I lose my death benefit?". A life settlement enables you to sell life insurance policies that you currently own, but no longer want or need. Seniors are given the option to sell their insurance policy, including the death benefit, in exchange for a lump sum. This eliminates the responsibility on them to pay premiums on policies they no longer want.

If you want to find out more about how the sale of life insurance might be of interest to you or someone you provide care for, visit the J.G. Wentworth Life Settlements website to find out more or request a quote.

This post is sponsored by J.G. Wentworth Life Settlements (DE), LLC

Sleep is a luxury to caregivers

One of the things that you never really stop to think about when you enter into being a family caregiver is the fact that some nights you won't get any sleep. I had one of those nights the other night. My mom's heart was bothering her so I told her to go ahead and lay down and I'd stay up and keep an eye on her. Sunday morning I had woke up at around 7:30 or 8 in the morning, Finally went to bed around 8pm Saturday night after spending all night Sunday sitting up watching back episodes of Heroes on the NBC website to keep me awake (I like that series, but the darned thing stopped playing right after episode 15, I need to figure out why so I can finish getting caught up and start watching that series along with Without A Trace), anyway...

After being awake the entire night before I got to bed around 8 last night, then had to get back up at about eleven and made it back to bed a little past midnight. Needless to say I did not wake up until 11 am this morning. Still feel worn out and all I wanna do is crawl back into bed and sleep for another 8 or 12 hours. Too much to do though, and I really should have woke up about 3 or 4 hours ago.

Got ponds to work on and flowers to get planted in the yard.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Knee or hip replacement surgery [paid post]

I've had a problem with my hips and knees for years. At times it seems like the joint just gives out and even left me collapsing to the floor once. I had just enough time to shift and shove the things I was holding into my nephew's arms before I went down. That experience has left me wondering if I would one day require joint replacement in one of my hips or knees.

I've had a lot of questions over the years about just what is involved in knee replacement surgery and if it would be something that I may need to look into in the future. Dr. Gustafson is an orthopedic specialist that specializes in knee and hip replacement and has a website filled with information about both. If you have questions about knee or hip replacement surgery, or would like to watch or read testimonials about it from others that have undergone the surgery, then visit the Gustafson Orthopedics website at the link above.

This post is sponsored by Gustafson Orthopedics

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Pet Stroller

Have you seen these things? They're called the Pet Stroller. There are a lot of different styles and price ranges. I think the things would be perfect for any senior that has a small dog or cat that they hate to leave at home when they go for walks. Or anyone that owns a small dog that hates to be left alone.

Little dogs such as shi tzu and chihuahuas hate to be left home alone. They get highly depressed and worry so. The pet stroller allows you to go for your morning run and take your pet with you because there is no longer a problem with the poor short legged pup keeping up with you as you jog.

And it is safer to take a dog along, since the little dogs can alert you to the presence of dangers such as someone hiding just out of sight or if you live in a rural area like I do they can alert you to something such as a moose, bear or whatever sort of large wildlife you have in your area. is KEWL!

Ever since I posted that last post, the one about, I have been playing around at their website. I love it, they are less like a game show though and more like a place where the members can help out other members with getting things they need. I have my vote up for getting picked to be a finalist for a Palm Z22 handheld (something to replace that defunked non-working one I got from that guy on eBay, and an IPod Shuffle (Orange, but I don't care, I just lost $23 trying to buy a elcheapo knock-off one from eBay that the guy did not send me, I need an MP3 player.) I won't know if I have made it into being selected for winning either of them for a while yet, but I hope I am selected and get the chance to get one. I really really need the MP3 player.

Anyway, if you have not checked out, go check them out. They're kewl and a lot of fun to just browse around and read the people's reasons why they think they should win. And if you see FamilyCaregiver pop up on something vote for me please! :::Big Grin:::

Game shows - from Television to [paid post]

My mom and dad have always loved to watch the game shows. I remember watching them with my mom back when I was a kid and we used to sit around the TV and watch game shows in the evening. Seeing who could get the right answer to the questions first or solve a puzzle or whatever the game show called for.

Game shows have been around for almost as long as television has, so I suppose it makes sense that after the Internet got to going it began finding it's own variations on the game show. Now there is a site called that has an online game show that lets you enter to compete for prizes, seven entrants are randomly selected for the final round.

Each of the seven finalists will have the opportunity to make a statement, up to 100 words long, explaining why they want or need the displayed product. This statement can be anything they want to say, even left blank if they desire.

Over the next one to two weeks the membership of will vote for who they feel should win the prize. The contestant with the highest number of votes is the winner.

The contest prize values range from $10 to $600, contests are open exclusively to members of It is free to join and they promise that "there is nothing to buy and no offers to complete. You will never receive spam e-mails."

This post is a paid post for

Flowers for the yard

My mom and I went to town last night and bought some flowers that we can plant out in the yard. Mostly Pansies although I did grab the last three snapdragons that Wal Mart had. We found some lovely fuschias for the hanging planters that go on the porch and a bit of lobelia to plant in them as well. Got a few nasturtium plants (nasty urchins) to go along the planter that fronts the log surround on the back lawn.

Should look really nice in a few weeks and we hope that we can get more plants in a few weeks to add to the few we got now and go on around toward the pond area with them.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Hayfield Dental Care clinic [Paid advertisement]

Trying to find a good dentist is not easy, and when it is an emergency you don't want to have to dash all over looking for one that does the type of procedure that you need. The Hayfield Dental Care clinic knows that, which is why they have dentists that have all received advanced or specialty training to perform almost any procedure in their clinic, without the need to refer their customer to another office.

Among the dentists at the Hayfield Dental Care clinic is charles brown dds pc. Ranked first in his class for the 1996 academic year, he received the Academic Achievement Award, the Quality Care Award and Resident of the Year award from UMMC in 1997.

Don't go everywhere looking for a dentist, in the Washington area visit the The Hayfield Dental Care clinic.

This post is a paid ad for

This blog post was based on information provided by Blogitive. For more information, please visit

Tree shopping for lilacs for mom

I was hoping to have a lilac for mom for mother's day, now I am thinking I may need to hold off on that. I priced the trees at Wal Mart (they did not have any lilacs) and they were between $50 and $80 each for common stuff like white birch. We have lots of birch in the yard, tyvm.

So, I need to check out Lowes and Home Depot and see what they have for what price range,. Fred Meyer too, they are usually the most expensive though.

Flower planting time

I've been out working in the yard getting it ready for summer. Mom and me got some pansies and a flowering trailing plant that I have no idea what it is but it's sort of like lobellia and has small purple flowers on it.

We're going to plant these in the planters by the porch, then get more flowers and move around toward the pond system planting flower beds as we go. Things should be looking really good here in another week or two.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

BEGOTH Fashion Dolls from Bleeding Edge - not your normal fashion doll

When you were a little girl you probably had fashion dolls. Beautiful dolls with petite waists and feet made for high heeled shoes. Your mom or grandmother probably made you pretty outfits for them. You likely collected all of the fashion doll's friends and the male dolls that went with them. Dreams of weddings were built into your play, your doll most likely dressed in the most beautiful wedding gown your mother or grandmother could sew up for her.

This pretty little Goth bride is most likely nothing like what your lovely bride looked like. Divinity is one of the BEGOTHStm that you can find at the Bleeding Edgetm website. These collectible dolls are not the dolls your mother bought you, these are "Toys That Refuse To Conform". These dolls are extremely detailed and twelve inches tall. Each has a distinct personality and include meticulously sewn outfits.

Visit the Bleeding Edge website to find out more about these highly collectible Gothic fashion dolls. But hurry, when I was there this bride in black was tagged as being almost sold out.

The preceding has been a paid post for Bleeding Edge

This blog post was based on information provided by Blogitive. For more information, please visit

Golf course in the yard? Why not?

I've been talking to my mom about an idea that I have been pondering about creating a golf course around the property. As she put it, "not a mini golf, but not a full sized course either." She wants me to lay out a plan for the course when I have a little free time to work on it.

She's the one that got me thinking golf. She bought a golf club at a second hand store a couple of years ago and we have been talking off and on over the winter about going to one of the local courses this summer. I got to thinking that there is no reason we can't build a few mini courses here in the yard and we even have a nice long drive that can be used as a driving range.

I think it would be great exercise and a good way to get outside and enjoy the summer.

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Walking tour videos for treadmill workouts

As a full time caregiver I find it hard to get out and go for long walks to enjoy the scenery, so I went on a mission to find myself something I can use with my treadmill to give the effect of a walk while not leaving the house.

YouTube was useless. I wasted a lot of time there looking for something I could watch and never did find even a halfway promising looking video. It did make me determined to make my own videos and share excerpts of them through YouTube. Then I found what I was looking for, not on YouTube, on Starling Fitness.

Check out the walking videos that Starling Fitness has for sale (only $5 each too, very affordable for family caregivers). These are videos from the point of view of the walker that have no annoying tour narration, just the natural sounds of the area you are walking through so that you can feel like you are there walking around. I'll be ordering one of them, just need to wait a few days to get the money in my PayPal account and decide what one to start with. LOL After I get it I'll let you know what I think of it and if I'm ordering the rest of them or not.

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Sunday, May 06, 2007

Universal Studios Tickets [paid ad]

Years ago my parents and I went to the lower 48 on vacation years ago and ended up down in California, I of course being the "how to make movies" nut that I am had to go and take the Universal Studios tour. It was amazing and ever since I have wanted to get the chance to visit the Universal Studios theme park in Florida as well.

Because of this desire, and my past experience talking about them, I have been keeping an eye on as a place to look for discount Universal Studios Tickets when I am ready to go. And you can be sure that I'll be getting tickets to Disney World and Kennedy Space Center too. In fact they have tickets for all Orlando theme parks, dinner shows and attractions and they say that they have will guarantee you the lowest ticket prices.

The preceding has been a paid post for

This blog post was based on information provided by Blogitive. For more information, please visit

Night at the Museum

Have you been looking for a good movie to watch on movie night? My brother rented Night at the Museum and me and my dad watched it last night. Good movie. I was not sure that I would have rented it or not myself, because I am not a big fan of Ben Stiller, but I really enjoyed the movie and am glad that my brother picked it up. This is one of them movies you can watch again and again and I'll be adding it to the movie collection when I get the chance.

It was great to Dick Van Dyke, Mickey Rooney and Bill Cobbs. They were great as the original museum night watchmen. I had not even realized they were going to be in the movie until after they showed up in it.

Someone else I had not known was in it was Robin Williams. I studied Teddy Roosevelt for a few minutes before I asked my dad, "Is that Robin Williams?" We kept watching then a couple minutes later he agreed, it was. He did a great job in the part, but then, Robin Williams always does a great job in any role I have seen him in. I'd have had no qualms renting the movie if I had known before hand that men like Dick Van Dyke, Mikey Rooney and Robin Williams were in the cast.

And Owen Wilson, oh man, he did a great job as the cowboy. I found out from IMDB that he's apparently uncredited in the movie. That's not nice, he did a great job and had a wonderful part in it. They should redo the credits and put him in them for future releases of the movie. There's been some roles of his that I didn't like, but all in all he's a great actor and definitely should have got crediting in this movie.

IMDB has it as 6.3 out of 10 stars
Amazon has it at 4 out of 5 stars
I'd definitely give it 4 out of 5, probably a 7.5 or 8 out of ten.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Happy May Day!

Just a quick note to say Happy May Day!

Follow this link to find instructions for how to make Mayday Baskets at Parents Talk.

Below is a video from YouTube of the Raising of the May Pole in the Bavarian town of Feldafing, Germany on May 1, 2006. This is a long drawn out video to watch, but it is interesting for anyone that wants to see just how they used to get them massive maypoles up. And it has really nice music by a live band accompanying it.


Relaxation Tip - Gardening

It has been too long since I have had a chance to just get out into the yard and do some gardening, but that was always a good way to relax and de-stress after a long hard day. Even if you can only make it into the garden for a few minutes a week it can be a good way to relax. This year I want to get our garden back up and going with peas and carrots and all that in it so that it can be used as a way to relax and enjoy the yard.


Online Payday Loan Company [paid post]

Payday advance loans are a vital source of short term loans for caregivers and is pleased to announce that their payday loans have recently made available in California and Alaska.

Licensed by each state in which it offers paycheck loans, can assure consumers that each payday advance loan received is legal and conducted under the laws of the individual customer’s state.

Customer service and satisfaction are the number one priority for, making them one of the fastest growing Payday Loan Online services in the nation.

Secure website, no hassle sign up process, and competitive prices give customers confidence in getting a deferred deposit loan from For more information visit:

This post is a paid advertisement for

This blog post was based on information provided by Blogitive. For more information, please visit

Minding Our Elders - Carol Bradley Bursack

I got a comment a little while ago from a regular reader, Carol Bradley Bursack, who pointed me in the direction of her website - Minding Our Elders, and her blog - Minding Our Elders Blog.

I'd like to encourage everyone to visit her site and blog. The website focuses on her book, which is also titled Minding Our Elders, "Minding our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories", but has much more to offer than just information on the book.

I looked the book over at Amazon, where I did a "surprise me" search of the inside and was taken directly to a heartwarming story about a gentleman named Brad who wanted to be sure that the city of Fargo got their elephants. That story hit a place in my heart because my dad is also a WWII veteran and I have felt the impulse to write a letter to him from the Army myself.

The book is filled with self contained stories and if even half of them are as touching and clearly conveying of what it is like to be a caregiver as that one, then I encourage you to pick up a copy of this book. Whether you are looking for comfort in knowing that someone else knows what you're going through, want to share with family what you are facing, or looking for insight into what the days ahead will be like when you become a caregiver to someone that you love, I think that this looks like a good resource to turn to.

Thank you so much to Carol Bradley Bursack for nudging me in the direction of your website and blog.

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Would you drink that milk?

I was eating some yogurt and reading the side of it a while ago, and there on the front of the container it says:

From Cows Not Treated with the Growth Hormone rbST*

Now... Is it just me? Or is there something a wee bit unsettling in the fact that they have to specify (in big lettering) that the cows they got their milk from were *not* treated with growth hormone?

The little asterisk leads you to the following disclaimer on the back of the carton...
* According to the FDA, no significant difference has been shown between milk derived from rbST treated and non-rbST treated cows.
Umm... yeah... excuse me? What exactly is no 'significant' difference? Or better question, what exactly is an insignificant difference? This all brings to mind that old cartoon for the cow pox vaccines, you remember that one? People with cows growing out of them all over the place... this one...

So, could someone please define again, if you would, what they consider 'significant' differences in the milk to be? I mean, really, what sort of warning signs should we be looking for when we're drinking milk?

Risk management recruiting [paid post]

When you have put years of your life into building up a company, or perhaps have a company that your father or grandfather put their lives into building from scratch, risk management is not something that you want to leave up to just any employee. Let A.E. Feldman Associates, Inc. help you fill the positions in your company with the right person for the job.

The recruiters at A.E. Feldman Associates have all had successful careers in the industries they represent, bringing invaluable experience, skill and insight to their job of making the best matches for each job.

Practice areas for A.E. Feldman Associates include: financial and risk management services, legal and legal support services, communications and technology, human resources consulting, and luxury products.

This post is a paid advertisement for A.E. Feldman Associates, Inc.

This blog post was based on information provided by Blogitive. For more information, please visit

AARP 2006 press release: Who's Caring for the Caregivers?

This is a link to an AARP press release on 'Who's Caring for the Caregivers?' that I want to be able to find my way back to later. Published a little over a year ago (March 16, 2006) I want to take a closer look at the programs that they discuss and see what the current situation for those programs are and if anything has possibly been added to the list since the press release was issued.


Caregiver articles from the February 1997 issue of Awake!

I was meandering the Internet again (I do that a lot) looking for information that might be of interest to caregivers, and I came across a series of articles on caregiving on the Watchtower website for Jehovah's Witnesses. The series of articles appeared in the February 8, 1997 issue of Awake! and are:

The Challenge of Caregiving
How to Deal With Feelings
Caring for the Caregiver—How Others Can Help

Even if you are not a Jehovah's Witness, the articles are worth reading over for insight into what being a caregiver is like and maybe learning how you can help a caregiver you know.


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