SHS Newsletter October 2023

What’s New?

The Senior Living Week expo day was held in Washtenaw Community College (WCC) on September 30th. The Michigan Medicine – Housing Bureau for Seniors, organize the senior living week event annually and this time they brought the author Ashton Applewhite, to present a topic “Still Kicking- Confronting Ageism and Ableism in the Pandemic’s Wake”. Very enlightening presentation with good QA session.

Five Fun Questions to Help You Get to Know Your Seniors Helping Seniors® Caregiver – Break the Ice

The Seniors Helping Seniors® family takes pride in facilitating meaningful, lasting connections between caregivers, clients, and families. We base our mission around the importance of forming a positive relationship between those giving and receiving in-home senior care.

Strong, trust-based comradery contributes to an efficient, fulfilling, and enjoyable experience for everyone involved. So, this month, let’s make it a point to get to know one another a little better!

The Benefits of a Positive Client-Caregiver Relationship

As dedicated companions, Seniors Helping Seniors® caregivers add moments of joy to each day. Fostering a deep connection offers countless benefits to physical and mental well-being. Once you feel comfortable around your caregiver, their presence can alleviate stress and anxiety surrounding your or your loved one’s in-home care.

A strong bond provides emotional support and instills a sense of belonging as well. As with any friendship, it’ll take time to get to know your caregiver. However, inquiring about their life and uncovering their personality is an easy-going way to become close.

The Purpose of Asking Questions

Giving your caregiver a friendly “3rd degree” helps improve communication skills and encourages them - and you - to open. After all, sharing details about yourself is often easier when both parties are participating in the conversation! This dynamic exchange can lead to better understanding, reduced stress, and a more personalized care experience. As you know, Seniors Helping Seniors® in-home care services make pairing caregivers and clients with similar interests and backgrounds a priority, so our caregivers often have plenty in common with those we serve. Who knows what similarities you can uncover with a few fun-loving questions! Enjoyable conversations form the foundation of a strong bond and provide an endless array of meaningful topics to explore. Here are five lighthearted questions Seniors Helping Seniors® clients can ask their caregivers for a deeper friendship.

Question 1: Did you or your family have any traditions growing up? What were they?

This question encourages your caregiver to share cherished memories and customs that have been passed down. You’ll be able to glimpse into their cultural heritage, upbringing, and the bonds they share within their family. Whether it's a holiday tradition, a special family ritual, or a unique celebration, this question evokes meaningful stories from their past, fostering a deeper connection and understanding between you and your caregiver.­

Question 2: Is there a book, movie, or song that holds a special place in your heart? Why is it important to you?

Preferences in literature, cinema, and music are often deeply rooted in our emotions and personal experiences. This question encourages your caregiver to share their artistic tastes along with the feelings, memories, and life events associated with it. Discussions about art, music, and literature can give your insight on the unique perspectives that shape your caregiver’s character.

Question 3: What is the most treasured item you own and what's the story behind it?

Personal possessions frequently carry sentimental value and powerful memories. By inquiring about their most cherished belongings, you invite your caregiver to share the emotions, experiences, and stories attached to the physical object.

This question opens a window into their past, allowing them to reminisce about meaningful moments or relationships that have shaped their life. In turn, you’re able to gain a deeper understanding of their values, attachments, and what brings them joy.

Question 4: What's the most interesting place you've ever traveled to, and why did you love it?

One’s choice of a favorite travel destination often reveals personal preferences, interests, and the experiences that have left a lasting impact. Asking this question to your Seniors Helping Seniors® caregiver can lead to engaging conversations about cities, cultures, landscapes, and funny moments on the road. Their response reveals their unique experiences and perspectives that have contributed to their personal growth and worldview.

Question 5: Is there anything specific you'd like to know about me or my life?

Friendship is a two-way street; sharing is just as important as asking! Opening yourself up demonstrates your willingness to create a reciprocal connection. It encourages your caregiver to get to know you better, creating a space for deeper conversations and mutual understanding. You never know, they may surprise you with the fun questions they ask!

Watching our caregivers and clients form quick and lasting connections is one of the most rewarding aspects of our in-home senior care. It’s also one of the many ways we help that feels less like a service, more like getting a little help from your friends®! Ultimately, the act of asking questions, along with the genuine exchange of stories and insights, lies at the heart of our mission to provide not just care but also lasting connections and joy every day.

T-oat-tally Delicious!

It turns out, oatmeal is as versatile as it is tasty! This National Oatmeal Day, the Seniors Helping Seniors® crew has complied four oat-of-this-world ideas to help you or your loved one make it a part of every meal.

  1. Pumpkin Oatmeal Muffins

‘Tis the season for a festive sweet treat! A mix of oats, pumpkin puree, nutmeg, cinnamon, and chocolate chips, these muffins will hit the spot while keeping it healthy.

  1. Breakfast Oatmeal Cups

Easily customized and totally delicious, egg cups are a great way to enjoy oats. Start with a few cups of oats, eggs, your favorite spices, and a handful of veggies, then bake and enjoy!

  1. Broccoli Cheddar Oatmeal Bake

Everyone’s favorite soup turned casserole! Use a traditional broccoli cheddar soup as a base, then add oats, eggs, baking soda, and cheese to transform it into a savory dinner dish.

  1. Healthy Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Dough

Last, but certainly not least, let’s talk desert. Frozen bananas, old-fashioned oats, raisins, vanilla almond milk, and cinnamon create the perfect combination. Simply pulse the ingredients in a food processor, then scoop out a scrumptious snack!

The best part about these dishes? They leave plenty of room to play! Whip up a few different variations with a caregiver for some hearty, healthy, and irresistible ways to eat your oats!