A Quarterly Newsletter for Family Caregivers of Older Adults
October, November, December 2012
The Caregiver Connection Newsletter is a free publication of the Baltimore County Department of Aging.
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Stories in this Issue
- Lively Entertainment and Limitless Resources at EXPO
- Asking for Help During the Holidays
- Outreach Events Support Your Need for Respite
- Workshop Addresses the Seasons of Transitions
- Freedom and Independence with Travel Training
- Useful Gifts for Aging Loved Ones
- Coping with the Holidays
At the Silver Anniversary of Baltimore County Department of Aging’s Baby Boomer/Senior EXPO, you are invited to “Remember the Past, Celebrate the Present, and Energize your Future”
Baby Boomer/Senior EXPO
Wednesday, October 10 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Thursday, October 11 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Admission: $2 or 2 cans of non-perishable food
Free gift at the door sponsored by GBMC and BGE
- Discover resources, entertainment and leisure opportunities
- Gain new information and specialty products from more than 250 exhibitors
- Enjoy the Silver Anniversary Art Show and Senior Center Exhibits
- Explore new ideas for travel, technology, life-long learning, health, and volunteerism
- Spotlight wellness through a free variety of preventative health screenings and flu shots
- Reflect on your bids at the mammoth Eye on the Prize Silent Auction
Celebrate EXPO’s 25th Anniversary with:
The Fabulous Hubcaps, Wednesday, October 10 from 3 to 6 p.m.
Jr. Cline and The Recliners, Thursday, October 11 from 2 to 4 p.m.
For more information about Baby Boomer/Senior EXPO, call 410-887-2594.
Many caregivers may feel their typical stress compounded around the holidays. The hustle and bustle only adds to the emotional and physical strain of caring for their loved one. This is why it is a crucial time to ask for help.
The National Family Caregivers Association (NFCA) has designated the month of November as a time to thank, support and empower family caregivers, which often means offering a hand to those who need it.
Because there may be more family members around (at holiday time) than usual, it may be easier for caregivers to take a break. For example, caregivers may be able to ask another relative to spend time with their loved one while the primary caregiver steps out to do some shopping or treat themselves.
Keep expectations of the holiday season reasonable, so as to quell feelings of guilt or failure. If caregivers do not expect perfection, they will be better able to enjoy the holidays.
For more holiday help tips, read the full article by Megan Ray.
In honor of National Family Caregivers Month in November, family caregivers of older adults are invited to a reception and 45 minute respite information session.
Thursday, November 8 at 11:15 a.m.
Liberty Senior Center, 3525 Resource Drive, Randallstown 21133
Monday, November 26 at 12:45 p.m.
Catonsville Senior Center, 501 North Rolling Road, Catonsville 21228
Tuesday, November 27 at 1 p.m.
Woodlawn Senior Center, 2120 Gwynn Oak Avenue, Baltimore 21207
Coordinated by the Baltimore County Department of Aging, Caregivers Program.
This program is free of charge and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served. For more information, call the Caregivers Program at 410-887-4724.
Throughout the year, Baltimore County Department of Aging (BCDA) will host several workshops addressing different themes and topics to enhance your awareness of what BCDA can offer you regardless of the season. Knowledge is the key to enrichment and handling life’s difficult times.
- Try a senior center fitness class
- Enhance your life with food and educational classes
- Dine on a meal together
- Discover the services of BCDA
Fall Workshop Transition Theme: Harvest
- When: Tuesday, November 13
- Where: Edgemere Senior Center, 6600 North Point Road, Baltimore 21219
Omelet Station dinner served at 5 p.m.
Program sessions start at 6 p.m. to include:
- Record Keeping for Tax Season
- Strength Training
- Community Service
- Family Caregiving
- Medicare Choices
Reservations are required by October 30 for this Fall Workshop.
R.S.V.P. and for more information contact 410-887-2594 Maryland Access Point of Baltimore County.
Travel Training is a step-by-step, individually customized process designed to help persons with disabilities and older adults to use Maryland Transit Authority (MTA) fixed-route Local Bus, Light Rail and Metro Subway. When Travel Training is completed, you’ll be able to and enjoy the freedom of traveling using all the transportation options available to you:
- get to medical appointments
- go on shopping trips
- visit family and friends
Go where you want, when you want with The IMAGE Center/MTA Travel Training Program. Gain freedom, independence and confidence.
- learn to plan your route
- read a map and schedule
- manage time and money
- practice personal safety and safe pedestrian skills
- manage your mobility equipment
Travel Training is free, voluntary, and does not affect your current or future eligibility to use Mobility services. Travel Training is offered by the Maryland Transit Administration in partnership with The IMAGE Center for People with Disabilities (Independent Marylanders Achieving Growth through Empowerment, Inc.) Contact 443-275-9393 or email@example.com.
Do you wonder which gifts are useful or appropriate for an aging loved one? The most cherished present is your presence. If you’re a full-time caregiver and already spend most of your time with your loved one, then consider a special outing together. Go out to lunch at a favorite restaurant, or take a stroll at the park or zoo.
If your loved one is homebound, celebrate with a special craft day. Bring out that box of family pictures and fill a scrapbook, reminiscing as you go. For long-distance caregivers, your loved one is as close as the telephone. Consider having a floral arrangement delivered to commemorate a special day.
If your aging relative lives in a nursing home or assisted living facility, then celebrate with a planned visit. If you want to bring a gift consider:
- a cozy afghan
- a night light
- washable clothing that’s easy to put on
- slippers with non-skid soles
- a guest book so that visitors can write personal notes
Whether your presence is the present, or your gift comes in a box wrapped with a bow, it’s the thought behind it that makes it special.
Shared by Jill Tarnoff.
While the holidays can be a season of celebration, joy, parties and family gatherings, they can also be stress inducing. Here are some tips from NAMI Metropolitan Baltimore's booklet "Coping with the Holidays When There is Mental Illness":
- Ask for help and support: If the services or support of a therapist is needed, make an appointment early.
- Assess your unique situation: You need to know the possible problem areas and your relative's capacities.
- Prioritize: Before you decide what you can do to make things more manageable, you must know what you are willing to do.
- Rehearse and role play: Sometimes anticipation of difficult events can upset those with mental illness, creating resistance, anxiety, and psychotic symptoms. If you can identify such an event, you can plan for it.
- Control what you can: You may not be able to control where the gathering is held; after all, these are often family traditions. You can, however, control how long you plan to stay.
- Take care of yourself: Do as much as you can to nurture yourself during this time of year: get a massage, meditate, or journal.
- Celebrate: The most important thing to remember about the holiday season is that it is a time of celebration. No matter what, do not let fear and anxiety keep you from having a nice holiday memory.
For more tips, contact the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI).
Revised December 28, 2012