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Silver Connections Fall 2016 Issue

DEBORAH’S DIGEST WHEW! What a busy and exciting couple of months we have had! In September, I received the news that Stay at Home won the Best of the Best Award in the Home Health Service category for the SIXTH year in a row! This achievement would not be possible without each vote from our clients, caregivers, and friends. I am so grateful to ALL of you! I had a chance to celebrate this award with many of our caregivers at a meeting held earlier this month. It was wonderful to see all of their smiling faces for this afternoon of education, catching up, and laughter! Our own Kim Dingus lit up the room with her Stay At Home cheer set to the Mickey Mouse Club tune. Priceless! One of our long-time and amazing caregivers, Joann Hartsfield, is featured below in our Caregiver Spotlight. We have been blessed to have Joann serving our seniors for eight years. Thank you, Joann, for all the joy you bring to our clients and your coworkers! You are truly an inspiration. In our last newsletter issue, I shared details about the Dementia Awareness Series offered by the Alzheimer's Association. Each session was wellattended and appreciated by community members. The last workshop of this three-part series took place in September. SING-WF and the Town of Wake Forest are already planning to host additional programs at the Renaissance Centre to promote dementia awareness. Fast forward a couple months . . . as you will read in the article on page three, SING-WF has become a leader in the Dementia Friendly America network. I am so proud to be a founding board member of this organization and how it is affecting change in Wake Forest. We are well on our way to making Wake Forest a dementia friendly community.. Visit for more information about this exciting effort. Last, but not least, I have included details below about our upcoming Holiday open house. Mark your calendars for this special gathering for our clients, caregivers and referral partners! To help with your Holiday planning, you'll also find an article which provides some unique gift ideas for your loved ones. Thank you for your friendship, your business, and the opportunity to serve you and your family. We treat every contact as a friend, every client as family, and complete every task with honor. Best wishes,

Deborah Bordeaux - President, Certified Senior Advisor

KUDOS FROM KIM CAREGIVER SPOTLIGHT: JOANN HARTSFIELD, CNA I A natural caregiver, Joann's interest in medicine and helping people dates back to her high school days when her father gave her a Bible and medical aid encyclopedia. The rest, as they say, is history. She has been a CNA since 1989, and started working for Stay at Home in 2008. Joann shared, "I thank God that I have been able to make a difference in the lives of so many clients and family members. I truly believe when you have been blessed that you should pass it on." Quality of life is important to Joann; valuing daily moments with the people she loves and cares for as priceless. She is humbled to have been a caregiver for Mrs. Ragusa, Mrs. Densmore, Mr. Barham, Mr. Jones, and Mrs. Grace (just to name a few) . . . who have all transitioned from this life to Home. Joann views the opportunity to experience different areas of health care and caregiving as deeply rewarding. She considers caregiving an educational and personal achievement that continues to enrich her ongoing journey of living a life well spent. When Joann is not working for Stay at Home, her daughter, Glorianna, and her husband of 30 years, Stanley, keep her "busy as a bee." Her flexible schedule allows her quality family and personal time. She especially enjoys attending noon day prayer and Bible study. As her gift to our readers, Joann wanted to pass along the serenity prayer by American theologian Reinhold Niebuhr as a reminder that patience truly is a virtue. Kim adds, "Joann exemplifies this prayer every day and in every way! Each client and their situation is unique, and I know that wherever I assign Joann, she will adapt to the environment and flourish!" God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.

IT’S TIME FOR OUR ANNUAL CHRISTMAS OPEN HOUSE . . . SAVE THE DATES! Our must-attend open house is just around the corner! Please stop by on December 14th, 15th, or 16th, between 11 am & 3 pm, to celebrate the season with delicious food, our signature holiday beverage, and a special gift from our beloved elf. Call the office for more details and to let us know you are coming - 919-556-3706.


On October 18th, SING-WF and the Town of Wake Forest hosted the Dementia Friendly America Statewide Conference at the Renaissance Centre. Nearly 200 state, non-profit, and business representatives from "Murphy to Manteo" attended this event to learn how to make their own communities dementia friendly. Staff members from Dementia Friendly America traveled from Minnesota to facilitate the conference. One of our Stay at Home clients, Carol Ferris, gave a heartfelt presentation during the welcoming remarks about the challenges of living with dementia. SING-WF is thrilled to be leading this effort in Wake Forest towards becoming dementia friendly. Dementia Friendly America Statewide Conference As a special afternoon breakout session, 25 of our SINGWF members were the first to be trained about how to become a dementia friendly business. Kim Dingus, our Family Services Director, did an amazing job with this initial training session. Our next training will be offered on Tuesday, February 7, 2017 from 10:00am-noon. This program is free for SING-WF members; $100 for nonmembers. To register, visit

Inaugural Graduating Class Dementia Friendly Business Training

Look for businesses who have this decal in their window! If you are a member of a non-profit organization or business serving the senior population in Wake Forest, please join us for our next community-wide meeting on January 27, 2017. Like us on Facebook by going to singwakeforest, or visit for more information.

HOLIDAY GIFT IDEAS FOR THE ELDERLY To make your shopping a little easier this holiday season, put together a list of fun and practical items for older adults. For your convenience, the gifts are organized by price, including some inexpensive ideas for crafters or kids to make.


Gifts $25 and less Grandparent Talk uses a deck of question cards to stimulate social interaction and spontaneous discussion between grandparents and the youngsters who don't necessarily recognize the store of knowledge their grandparents hold (and often don't know how to ask the right questions to start a conversation with them). Grandparent Talk is the perfect door-opener to build a bridge between generations. Carefully chosen questions -such as, "Have you ever faced a bully?" -- are displayed on the collection of cards in the game deck. Another deck in this series is Family Talk, which encourages the kind of old-fashioned, around-the-kitchen-table banter families use to have in the evenings before TV, computers, and texting scattered the generations in different directions. To order: Cost: about $11 offers a variety of practical gifts that you can design yourself and order quickly for the holidays. Upload some of your favorite digital photos or put your favorite faces on coffee mugs, photo magnets for the fridge door, or a photo key chain. How about a refrigerator magnet, a 5-by-7-inch brag book for Grandma, or a deck of playing cards featuring a photo of Grandpa's favorite pet? To order: Cost: $3 and up Word games like Scrabble or Boggle are fun for all generations -- and they're great exercise for the brain. As in Boggle, players of Bananagrams make words, and as in Scrabble, they create crosswords. And they need to work as fast as they can, until someone yells, "Bananas!" No pencil, no paper, no bulky board required. Each Bananagrams game includes 144 letter tiles zipped into a bright yellow, banana-shaped bag that's easy to store and pull out when guests visit or the family gathers -- or to use at the kitchen table for a solo game with a cup of coffee on a rainy afternoon. To order: Cost: about $15 Stepping in and out of a slippery bathtub or shower -- or simply standing in one -- can be a challenge for older adults. Give the gift of some extra confidence: a 12-inch Bath Safety Grip that provides assistance for entering and exiting the shower or bathtub. This grab bar is sturdy and easily attaches to any smooth surface via strong suction cups on each end. This is a particularly handy gift for seniors who travel and want extra safety in an unfamiliar shower, such as when visiting the grandkids or staying in a hotel. The Bath Safety Grip is portable, lightweight, and easy to pack, and it can be used just about anywhere an extra grip is needed. To order: Cost: about $10 The LifeBio Memory Journal is especially suited to an older person who enjoys writing. This lovely gift is a book of creative, memory-jogging questions about life, with sufficient space after each question to capture handwritten answers. It creates a wonderful opportunity for a grandparent to pass on stories and wisdom to the next few generations. The journal asks more than 250 questions, such as, "How would you describe your mother to someone who has never met her?" Or "What skills did you inherit from your parents?" Other questions ask the writers to recall their favorite birthday party as a child, the neighborhood they grew up in, or a favorite subject when they were in high school. The resulting answers can be transferred to an online LifeBio journal and merged with scanned pictures to become a hardbound LifeBio book that can be copied multiple times and given to family members. To order: Cost: $19.95 for journal Continued . . .

The Art of Aging is a profusely illustrated book that provides a wealth of inspiration for older adults. Created by painter Alice Matzkin and her husband, sculptor Richard Matzkin, this touching book explores the experience of aging through art. In a series of projects that confront the artists' fears and curiosity about growing old, they examine physical changes, sensuality, relationships, spirituality, and their own aging parents -- and they do so with dignity and candor. Their uplifting conclusion: The elder years can be a time of ripening and harvest rather than inactivity and despair. To order: Cost: about $17 Ideal for those with weak knees or backs or other physical challenges such as arthritis, or for those who use a cane and have difficulty getting in and out of an auto, the Handybar provides extra leverage and support when entering or leaving a vehicle. It works with many (if not most) autos, small trucks, vans, and SUVs. Small and easy to use, this device can be stored in an auto's door pocket. The Handybar features a soft, nonslip handle with an insert on the end that fits into a vehicle's striker (a U-shaped device that's factory-attached inside the door well and is readily visible and available once the door is opened). A striker is designed to hold at least 2,500 pounds, which means it won't pop off if an overweight person uses the Handybar with it. With a built-in seat belt cutter and side window breaker, the Handybar is an equally useful tool in an emergency. To order: Cost: about $20

Gifts $25 to $100 An adorable, soft, robotic toy pet may be just the right gift for an older adult or a loved one suffering from dementia, especially if they can no longer take care of a pet or are living in an apartment or an assisted-living facility that doesn't allow animals. The WowWee Alive Sleeping Cuties are perfect to hold or cuddle up with for a nap. Each one has a movable head and "knows" when you pick it up. Pet one and it wakes up or makes soft, sleepy pet sounds; play with one, and it makes happy sounds. To order: Cost: $40 and up Are you caring for someone who's an active reader or hobbyist -- who likes to, say, fine-stitch a needlepoint pillow or tie flies or collect stamps? Most likely, that person can use a little more brightness and magnification while indulging in such pastimes. If so, the Fulcrum 20072-401 Magnifier 12 LED Floor Lamp provides light, magnification, and adjustability. With 12 high-powered but cool LEDs, this floor lamp provides ample light for close work and reading. The ultraflexible gooseneck brings the light exactly where it's needed and to the right angle for viewing. The extra-large lens easily covers an entire page without glare or hot spots. And unlike that magnifier hidden away in a drawer, this one won't be hard to find when it's needed most. To order: Cost: about $80

Gifts $100 and up For the older adult who wants to clear snow but whose back or arm strength isn't up to it anymore, the lightweight, electric Power Shovel could be an excellent alternative. This small machine tackles snow up to 6 inches deep on any hard surface, such as patios, decks, driveways, walkways, or front steps. It's also great for those lighter snowfalls, when a snow removal service doesn't cover the job. The lightweight Power Shovel weighs 13 pounds and is easy to maneuver and use. Because it doesn't require gas or oil, it's also maintenance free. Just plug it in and it's ready to go. When not in use, its compact size makes it easy to store. To order: Cost: $100

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Whether the person you're thinking about drinks just a single daily cup of java (or tea or cocoa) or simply likes a fresh brew with each cup, Keurig's one-cup brewers, which come with a selection of gourmet coffees, make ideal gifts. The basic Mini Brewing System brews a single cup with no guesswork or leftover water. The Elite Brewing System, which comes with a 48-ounce water reservoir, offers an automatic "off" feature that can prove useful for forgetful older adults. Compact and easy to use, these brewers make good sense for a small home kitchen or in an assisted-living environment (not to mention in an RV). To order: Cost: $125 and up For someone whose hearing isn't what it used to be, the TV Ears portable listening system can make an audible difference. This wireless headset system enhances the sounds and voices from TV (it works with the latest plasma and LCD flat screens), and it's flexible enough to be used as a wired headset for an iPod, computer, or other music and electronic device. The TV Ears Professional model clarifies television dialog; it also has an automatic Commercial Control that caps loud commercials so the listener doesn't get an unexpected blast of volume. In addition, it amplifies cell phones, home phones, and even voices during one-on-one conversations. To order: Cost: $220 Pushing a vacuum cleaner may no longer be an option for the person you're buying for, especially if he or she has mobility issues. The Roomba, a robotic vacuum, can clean two rooms on one battery charge. To begin the job, just press the start button, take a seat, and watch the action. The Roomba will "learn" a room and its floors, remembering where furniture and walls are located and what to avoid, such as stairs. When this flying saucer-like device completes its job or is in need of recharging, it finds its way back to the charging station and docks itself. The Roomba works well on wood and low-nap rugs and for cleaning up pet hairs and dander. There's also a model that washes the floor (the Scooba) and a heavy-duty Dirt Dog that will tackle the garage or cellar work area. To order: Cost: $350 and up, depending on the model

Crafty Gifts You Can Make For their grandparents, kids can create a colorful coupon book decorated with their favorite digital pictures. What to include? How about unique services they can provide for a grandparent, such as several car washes (always appreciated by an older driver) or perhaps two hours of yard- or housework (raking leaves in the fall, shoveling snow in the winter, or washing windows at any time of year). Other coupon items might include climbing a ladder to change light bulbs, installing new smoke alarm batteries, or dogsitting when the grandparents are on a trip. Other fun coupons could include an all-day activity with a grandparent, such as a day of fishing, a trip to the shopping mall (including lunch), or a day at the county fair. Lots of templates and ideas are available from Kodak. A year's worth of gifts come in the form of a homemade calendar. Include such special dates as birthdays and anniversaries along with holidays that the family celebrates. Then add digital pictures that depict activities from different seasons or family events. Free templates can be printed from Printable Calendar. Older adults aren't always enamored of having to cook, so a gift of homemade food can be a special treat. Maybe it's a tin of your best fudge or a granddaughter's cookies. Try decorating a wicker basket and filling it with some favorite snacks. Find hundreds of free recipes for every course, including holiday cookies, fudge, or other favorite foods, at Free Cooking Recipes. Are you someone who likes to sew? With scraps of cloth you have left over from a project, plus a sewing machine, you can create sewn gifts ranging from a cheery pot holder to a new set of placemats or a colorful shopping bag. There are lots of free projects, ideas, and patterns, from beginner through advanced levels, at Holiday gift giving can be especially challenging if you're caring for someone in an assisted-living environment, where personal storage space is a luxury. What follow are some inexpensive gift ideas for someone living in more confined quarters:  Framed piece of a grandchild's artwork  Knitted hat, gloves, and scarf   Teacup with box of herbal tea  Continued . . .

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Memory book of special photos Small bottle of real maple syrup  Pens, assorted greeting cards, postal cards, stationery, and stamps  Desk-quality address book or guest book  Shower tote filled with bath gels and moisturizers  Decorative napkins and small matching plates  Assortment of current magazines tied together with a colorful ribbon  Jigsaw puzzle (500 pieces or more)  Low-vision, large-print deck of cards  Blank journal  Pencil box with pens, paper clips, and colorful post-it notes  Decorative glass jar filled with old-fashioned penny candy  Scented soap-on-a-rope and a flannel nightshirt  Prepaid long-distance phone cards  Desk clock with big numbers  Decorated box for keepsakes  Desktop Christmas tree  Sewing box with supplies  Colorful knitting or crocheting yarns  Flashlight for a nightstand  Handkerchiefs  Soft makeup brush and some face powder  Warm, colorful socks 


Give us a call today if we can help in any way - 556-3706

Reformatted fall 2016 newsletter  
Reformatted fall 2016 newsletter