• Putnam: 845-526-1132 / Westchester: 914-468-4710

The Caregivers’ Guide to the New Year

For many, the New Year is treated as a fresh start. People all over the nation are making resolutions to be more organized, get in better shape and to be the best person they can be. As a caregiver so much of what you do requires you to be at the top of your game, so you can take exceptional care of your client this year!

Here are a few New Year’s resolutions to make 2017 the best year for both you and your client_MG_9916

Take a walk.
Just 20 minutes of physical activity each day can reap major health benefits. Suggesting a walk with your client will not only keep you both active in the new year, but it’s also a great activity to grow closer to one another. As you stroll through the neighborhood or a local park you can enjoy the fresh air and each other’s company.

Go sugar free.
This tip is especially great if your client has diabetes or other health related issues. Opting for a sugar free choice, is one of the best things you and your client can do for health. In the New Year, make an effort to skip a sugary dessert a few times a week and enjoy a bowl of fruit. Look for a sugar-free option of your client’s favorite sweet treat.

Rekindle or find a hobby.
Whether it’s painting or coin collecting, many seniors forget about hobbies and passions they once enjoyed. In the New Year why not find something you can both do together and enjoy! You could even turn your hobby into a community service project like knitting newborn caps for infants at a local hospital or scarves for a homeless shelter.

Show care.
As a caregiver you want to be sure that you are not only showing care to your client, but also to yourself. This could come into play through eating nutritious meals for energy, getting better sleep and developing a self-care routine so you can not only be the best caregiver for your client, but the best person for yourself in the new year!

We hope these tips give you a few ideas for healthy habits for yourself and your client. If you are looking for ongoing support, please contact our office to get information about our Caregiver Support Group which will be launching in the New Year!

Merry Christmas From Always An Angel Homecare

As a caregiver, the holidays can be a difficult season caring for seniors. The holiday festivities become less and less, loved ones have passed and this joyful time can transition into feelings of loneliness and depression.

Here are a few ways you can be an encouragement to your client or even an elderly family member if you know they are suffering with loneliness during the holiday season:

Quick Tip: Loneliness is something seniors struggle with all year around, so you can apply these tips at other times than just the holidays! IMG_1282

If your client or family member will be spending the Holidays with you:

  • Think about any eating or dietary requirements beforehand. Prepare something they will enjoy and will be good for their needs!
  • Prepare a comfy chair for them as many seniors need comfortable seating.
  • Speak slower and louder, specifically for those who are hard of hearing.
  • Respect their wishes. For example many seniors enjoy just sitting and being surrounded by others, don’t push them to participate in group activities if they don’t want to.

If your client or family member will not be spending the Holidays with you or loved ones:

  • Try to visit if you can! Even thirty minutes taken out of your day to take the time to say hello will be a special, loving gesture!
  • Ensure that your client or relative has enough medication over the holiday period if you know they will be alone. And again, check up on them if you can!
  • If you can’t visit, give them a phone call to ask them how they’re doing and to set any reminders they may need like taking medication or eating meals.
  • Leave them a special note sharing what a blessing they are to your life, or even a prayer for the Lord’s provisions in their life.

We hope this short post gave you some ideas as the holiday season continues to get busier and busier. Remember to do your best in making yourself available to your client or family member who may be suffering from loneliness this holiday season.

Our staff at Always An Angel Homecare would like to provide you with a piece of encouragement that you could share with your client or elderly family member:

“The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness; He will quiet you by His love; He will exult over you with loud singing.” Zephaniah 3:17

Caregiver Holiday Party 2016: A Brief Reflection

Saturday evening was spent at the Velichko residence as our caregivers and office staff came together to celebrate the holiday season! The evening was filled with warm hugs, laughter and great company.

If I had to describe the Holiday party in one word it’s this – community. _MG_1152

Being the Social Media Representative, my job varies from spending long mornings in the office writing blog posts, to website management, creating social media content and working on graphic design projects. Along these, my favorite task in this position is the photography projects where I capture images of our staff members at our annual events!

Spending most of the evening photographing our Caregiver Holiday Party brought so much joy to my heart as I watched our caregivers who dedicate their day to day lives serving the elderly come together and embrace their passion for serving those in need.

IMG_1023The evening was filled with so much laughter, I was concerned someone was going to fall short of breath. There was such a deep joy that seemed to intoxicate everyone, and what a beautiful thing it was to watch!

Always An Angel Homecare lives and breathes community. As a new employee, the first thing I observed was how loving everyone was towards one another. It was something I was unfamiliar with in a work environment. I’ve worked in places where there was no office chemistry, or where some of the employees were just plain cold and unkind. But here at Always An Angel Homecare, everyone is so kind, welcoming and always available! IMG_1327

Our Caregiver Holiday Party was a confirmation in my heart that working for this agency is no coincidence. I truly believe that the Lord has handpicked our office staff and caregivers as we all illustrate different strengths that help make this agency the success that it is!

And as for me, the Social Media Representative, my goal after seeing all the great things about this agency displayed at our Holiday Party, is to emphasize community in all of our content so we can continue showing our greatest strength to those around us!

Be sure to visit our social media links for more information on Always An Angel Homecare:

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Happy Thanksgiving from Always An Angel

Happy Thanksgiving from the team at Always An Angel Homecare! We want to take this opportunity to give a special thanks to all who have come across our blog! We are so thankful for each and every one of you, and hope that today’s post is an encouragement especially to those who may be celebrating this year’s Thanksgiving Holiday with the recent passing of a loved one or alongside a family member who is struggling with dementia. Our prayer is that you will find moments throughout this special day to give thanks with a grateful heart, rejoice and live abundantly alongside family and friends.Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving can be a time of great joy as family and friends come together celebrating gratitude, but it can also be a difficult time when a loved one has recently passed away or when a family member is suffering with dementia. Events like this can make the holidays stressful and very emotional. Here are a few tools to put into action if this year’s Thanksgiving looks like you’ll be facing these challenges:

Take it slow.

A major holiday like Thanksgiving can be a pretty busy day with the cooking and socializing but make sure that you are taking care of yourself through the hustle and bustle of this holiday. It can become a lot, especially if the added stress of having a family member who is suffering with dementia is present. The constant reminding and reassuring can be difficult. This applies even more if it’s your first Thanksgiving with a beloved family member no longer present.

So if you need to step away and take a five minute break, do it. You’re better removing yourself from the situation as opposed to having an emotional outburst in the middle of turkey dinner. Never forget about taking time for yourself during grieving, and remember that you are not alone!

Remember why you’re there.

Whether the family member is deceased or suffering with memory loss, don’t allow that to affect you to the point that you forget why you are celebrating Thanksgiving in the first place.

Thanksgiving is about gratitude; so often we get tangled up in our everyday lives and the busyness of our own circumstances. This is why Thanksgiving is such a popular holiday because it allows us to step out of our everyday busy lives and reflect on all the things we are thankful for.

Yes, for some families, Thanksgiving can be a challenge, but we want to encourage you to remember why you are celebrating – to give thanks for all the Lord has blessed you with in the last year.

Be encouraged.

Thanksgiving is a time to celebrate all the Lord has given you. Our staff and caregivers at Always An Angel Homecare want to provide you with additional encouragement from Colossians 3:16-17

“Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.”

Walk to End Alzheimer’s: 2016

On October 16, ALWAYS AN ANGELHOMECARE participated in the Walk to End Alzheimer’s held in Carmel, New York. Our team consisting of office staff, caregivers, clients and family members totaled about 20 participants.
Congregating in the parking lot of Putnam Resources for Seniors, every participant was greeted with a smile, a hug and a free company t-shirt with our logo. Sporting our ALWAYS AN ANGEL HOMECARE t-shirts (some with a hoodie or two…it was brisk), we took advantage of the photo op and snapped away._MG_9967

To our delight and surprise, our team was invited to hold the Walk to End Alzheimer Banner, and we proudly led the way. We were so honored and thankful we were given the opportunity to lead the walk.

ALWAYS AN ANGEL HOMECARE works very closely with our local chapter of Alzheimer’s Association having also hosted our first The Longest Day Fundraiser in June this year. You can find a local Alzheimer Association Caregiver Support Group on our website under About Us, Local Resources, Support Groups.

We know firsthand the devastating effects of this debilitating disease and its progression.

We are committed to:
• educating our caregivers with ongoing dementia training
• striving to staff caregivers with dementia experience with dementia clients
• flexing schedules to accommodate new, increased and different needs
• understanding some families may have their proverbial “line in the sand” to transition to a facility
• referring to local facilities to meet your loved one’s needs

Through the many trials and tribulations…your loved one asking the same questions repeatedly, your loved one putting toothpaste in their hair instead of shampoo, putting the ice cream back in the oven instead of the freezer, your anxiety about what the future holds especially if something happens to you first, we want you to know that we are here to help, offer hope and give you peace of mind.

We want to leave you with a note of encouragement if you have a loved one suffering with dementia. May this prayer give you peace and lift your spirits as you continue on in this journey.

Heavenly Father, we worship You who is the author of life. You have made us in Your image and likeness and thus have given all men and women a dignity greater than all the rest of creation. Give light and grace to those suffering with dementia. Turn this time of mental confusion into a period of spiritual enlightenment and clarity in the depths of their soul. Help those who are their caregivers by making this a time of great grace for them.
Amen.

Memorial Day 2015

Memorial Day 2015

On March 10, 2015, my son Alexander Paul Velichko, a senior in high school, drove to Albany and enlisted in the UNITED STATES NAVY. Early on this year, he thoughtfully invited representatives from the Army, Marines and Navy to our house to learn more about each branch of the Armed Forces. After meeting with each for about three hours, he settled on the Navy and is leaving for boot camp July 23 pursuing a career in Advanced Electronics.

This past Monday evening at our Varsity High School baseball game, during the pledge, Alex was the only player/student with his hand on his heart. All the other players had their hands by their sides.

Why was Alex the only kid with his hand on his heart? Was it because he was a scout, more specifically an Eagle Scout this past fall? Was it because of his love for his country, so much so since 8th grade he has felt drawn to join the Armed Forces? Of course, it was because he is enlisted in the UNITED STATES NAVY!

My eyes welling up behind my big sunglasses and with my own love and devotion to our country, the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, my heart was overwhelmed with love and pride for my son.

Since Alex joined the navy, I can’t enter the VA in Montrose without tears in my eyes thanking each vet I see. I have a new respect and admiration for the military. Yeah, my dad was in the navy, my father-in-law was in the Army, but my son Alexander Paul Velichko is now a sailor in the UNITED STATES NAVY. There is nothing like the heart of a mom. May the Lord bless him and keep him.

May I take this opportunity to thank all our veterans who have served our country. Please join me in a prayer for our country:

“While the storm clouds gather far across the sea,
Let us swear allegiance to a land that’s free,
Let us all be grateful for a land so fair,
As we raise our voices in a solemn prayer. ”
God Bless America,
Land that I love.
Stand beside her, and guide her
Thru the night with a light from above.
From the mountains, to the prairies,
To the oceans, white with foam
God bless America, My home sweet home.

God Bless America Words and music by Irving Berlin
© Copyright 1938, 1939 by Irving Berlin

Mother’s Day Ideas

Mother’s Day Ideas

Mother’s Day is coming up, and it’s a nice opportunity to recognize our moms for all they have done and still do for us. Most moms appreciate when their children simply spend some quality time with them, especially on this special day. That’s not always possible, but we should all do the best we can. If you are going to be presenting your mom with a gift, you might be wondering what would make her happy this year. As time goes by, it can get more challenging to think of gifts that are appropriate and meaningful. Here are just a few ideas you might consider:

• If not on Mother’s Day, you might set some time aside on a specific day, and plan on helping your mom with tasks or chores that she might have a difficult time doing.

• You might consider having her precious photos scanned and put into a book format, leaving room for her to write in comments for reference later on. So many times old photos are left in question to whom they are, when it was taken or where.

• If your mother has a difficult time preparing meals for herself, a gift of freezing a home cooked meal a week can be something that she can look forward to, and you can be feel better knowing she is eating something nutritious and tasty.

These are just a few ideas to get you started. At Always An Angel Homecare we want to wish all the mothers a very happy Mother’s Day!

Always An Angel Homecare is a team of quality professionals who provide the elderly with assistance, companionship and non-medical care. Our staff will treat your loved one with respect and dignity. If you know an experienced caregiver who would like to join our team, have them contact us at 845-526-1132 for an interview.

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