Monday, August 29, 2016

Ideas for Bridging Generational Gaps #CaringMadeEasy #ad #cbias

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CaringMadeEasy #CollectiveBias

About once a month, a local assisted living facility asks for community members to come sing and play music for the residents. Our homeschool group participated last year and my teens loved bringing their guitars or piano music and playing songs the residents recognized and could sing along with.

It's important to me to teach our kids that they can have a big impact on their communities right where they are and in every stage of life. I want them to have the opportunity to learn from and be influenced by people of all generations. We live in a community that, until recently, served as mainly a retirement community for many years. There are a lot of opportunities here for the youngers and olders to mingle. Ministering at an assisted living center or to other people in our community is just as edifying for my children as it is for the residents.  As they see the joy they can bring to people, it gives them the chance to build relationships with them.

One thing we want to start doing when we visit is to bring a gift basket along. We could include things like a pretty lap blanket, a puzzle book, or an audiobook. We could also include practical necessities like toiletries and sanitary items. In this basket, I've included Poise® Liners. This a product that I believe many of the residents would need and use daily.

I purchased Poise Liners at Sam's Club this past weekend. I appreciate Sam's Club's online ordering option, and I love being able to pickup my order without waiting in line. Specially made for light bladder leakage, Poise incontinence liners stay three times drier than other liners made just for periods. They feature an absorb-loc® core which keeps wetness and odor at bay so the wearer doesn't have to let light bladder leakage get in the way of daily activities.

There are lots of ways to bridge generational gaps between the young and the aged. The main thing is to get over any preconceived ideas about one another's interests and, instead, open up dialogue. The older generations love to talk one on one so the best way to find out what they're in to is just ask!

Here are some more ideas to help younger people enjoy the wisdom and influence of the older generations:

  • Take a nature walk together and collect items for a fairy pot. If the older person has difficulty outside, the younger person could bring all of the supplies to their room, open up a sunny window, and work on the project with them there.
  • Cards, board games, and puzzles are always fun and challenging. Pick games that aren't super complicated but will require all players to strategize. These sort of mind builders are beneficial to every age level.
  • Prepare a picnic to enjoy together in or out of doors. 
  • Bake cookies or make and decorate a cake together. One of my favorite early memories was when our neighbor, Alice, invited me over to make oatmeal cookies. I was only about six years old and I remember she's the one who taught me to sift flour!
  • Spend time looking at cloud or rock formations and use your imaginations to decide what they look like.
  • Do a simple sport like badminton, ping pong, or bounce a ball back and forth while visiting.
  • Visit a lake or river to go fishing or skip rocks in the water.
  • Work on a project like repairing a small engine or building a birdhouse. 
  • Have a conversation about something special like their father's tackle box or their mother's sewing box. 
  • Look through photographs together.
  • Do a service project together like preparing gifts or writing cards or making hats and blankets.
  • Find some old newspapers or magazines and have the older person talk about events or ads from their point of view.
  • Play with Legos or make a model car.
  • Cut paper dolls from magazines or make scrapbooks from pretty pictures. My great-grandma loved to do this with me when I was little and I have several of our scrapbooks made from seed catalogs.
No matter the activity, the important thing for all generations is to know that we have true friends and are being loved and respected for the valuable people we are. Spending time in real relationships is important for all ages.

Next time you'll be visiting a caregiving center, consider taking along a gift basket or donation of Poise® or Depend® products. Are you a caregiver? When you purchase Depend products and download the Digimarc Discovery app, you can scan anywhere on the packaging to visit the Sam's Club caregiver website. In addition, look inside for a sticker that is redeemable at the pharmacy for a special caregiver sample kit. If there are products you purchase regularly, consider Sam's Club's subscription service for uninterrupted delivery of all your necessities.

I'd love to hear your ideas for bridging generational gaps. Let me know in the comments below!

Friday, August 19, 2016

Second Regency Dress is Finished!

Sewing is coming along nicely for my Regency "trousseau". Ha! Yesterday I finished my second dress and now I can't decide if I want to wear this one in the promenade or the red one I showed you last week. 

I went with a higher neckline and long sleeves with this one---a morning dress look. I love the option this pattern has for adding a waistband. Even though I don't have a tie running through, it just looks so nice and much less "nightgownish" than some of my previous dresses.

I also chose to do a tie back. Several references say this was the most common way to close up the dress in Jane's day.

I've done so many hand-stitched eyelets lately that they're really growing on me. Only 15 more days until I leave! I'm super excited! 

Sunday, August 14, 2016

DIY Vintage Heirloom Stool Makeover

I'd like to introduce you to a dear family heirloom: 
This is The Stool. 
In the early 1950s, in Burns, Oregon, my grandpa George Bradley made this stool for his new bride, Betty Kiggins Bradley. The top was plain wood colored and the legs were painted bright red and later, a rusty red color. When my mom left home (Gresham, Oregon---I think) in the early 1970s, Grandma Betty gave her this stool, as she had no furniture! 

Mom kept this with her when she married my dad. She painted it chocolate brown and did a little repair work: 

It has served all kinds of purposes since! I remember it as a plant stand in the living room and a night table in pretty much every family member's bedroom! When my husband and I were married in Baker City, Oregon in 1998, guess what I inherited?

The stool! This really is one of the most special things I own. How awesome to have such a portable little heirloom! For several years, I had plans on fixing it up, repainting it, just adding my own flavor to it. 

A few years ago,I decided I wanted to "get crafty" so I grabbed The Stool out of the shed and came up with a plan to get it looking presentable. (FYI---I really had no plan...I just kind of did whatever seemed right. Ha! I'm a very spontaneous "crafter").

I brought it in and set it on the kitchen floor, telling little Selah that I was planning to fix it up cute. She put her baby blanket on it and said she thought that was pretty cute. 

It was...but not quite what I had in mind! I wanted to try and take the paint off but, since I was only using the things I had around the house, I had to improvise. I used my Pampered Chef spatula to begin scraping off the top. 

That lasted about 5 minutes and I was sick of it so I decided just to paint over the 3 other layers of paint and hope that it would crackle neat! 

It did! By the way, I tried and tried to pry that nail out of there but it wouldn't budge. I kinda like leaving it there though as my mom put it there and it's kind of been a little joke over the years! I needed to find some way to cover it though! 

After a couple coats of paint, I decided to stop for the night and consider options for the next step. 

The next day, I remembered that I had several yards of some pretty fabric that my friend JoAnn gave me. I decided to make a cute cushion for the top. Using my then 8-year-old Michael's school ruler, I measured out a circle that I hoped would fit.

I'd never made a cushion before so I wasn't really sure what to do---when suddenly, I remembered a Christmas craft project that we did in the 5th grade! Mrs. Neyman taught us how to make mini-pillows and string them together for wreath ornaments. 

I stitched all the way around the circle.

Little Avalon helped, of course! 

Then I filled it loosely with pillow filling. Once I set the cushion on the stool, I realized that The Nail was still very obvious. So, I hot glued eyelet trim all around the top and then glued the pillow on. 

Not bad for a 21st century makeover! 

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