Tuesday, December 5, 2017

What to Tell Someone Newly Diagnosed With Alzheimer's

Today would have been my late husband's 80th b.d. I recorded his illness and last days on this blog. He died from mixed dementia (Vascular Dementia and Alzheimer's) in our Plant City home on June 23, 2014. He was told the news that he had this disease with the doctor's simple,

Mr. Johnson, you have dementia. 

No other instructions. Nada. So I, his wife and caregiver, had to come up with a plan. On retrospect, I wish he had been told these instructions.

  1. Mr. Johnson, live life for each day.
  2. Organize your finances. 
  3. You don't need to work forever. Plan to retire.
  4. Your mind will play tricks on you and you need to trust your wife to be your helpmate and help you to decide each day. She will give you a schedule so you know what is happening.
  5. Stop using guns and equipment that might not be safe for you or others. Eventually you will not be safe to drive. 
  6. You will eventually need help recognizing your surroundings because you do not feel at home. You want to "go home". But accept your wife and other caregivers judgments. 
  7. This life is not all. You as a Christian have heaven to look forward to. Your wife and others will be there for you. 

But we learned as we went along. 

Happy Birthday in Heaven,
I will always remember you.

Monday, September 25, 2017

September Alzheimer's Association Walks

Botanical Gardens
September 9th I walked in the Huntsville, Alabama Alzheimer's Association walk and appreciate the friends who contributed to this walk. Note that I made a skirt from previous walks. 

Since this blog has a Facebook "Like" page, I decided to boost the picture and also to use it as the header for that like page. I received so many likes on that page--236 to date. I reached 2,328 people before I stopped running the ad.  Good decision to make a skirt out of previous walk T-shirts and glad I ran the ad. Now to pay for it! 

There was to be another walk in Decatur, Alabama about 45 minutes away on September 23. I volunteered to help there also. 
Dianne Pierson leading the Decatur program
Me helping in the Decatur booth

Paisley's  master died, but the son carries on the tradition of walking.
Dogs grieve too as did my dog after my husband died from Mixed Dementia. 

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Goals and Bucket List for 2017

Highlights of the 2016 year include putting two new raps on YouTube ("While You're Still One" and "Rocket City Ditty"); finishing the dissertation "Finishing Strong With Dementia Caregiving", except I have to defend it; and walking again after breaking both feet in August.

Cast and boot in August

So what are my new goals that 
you all can hold me accountable for?


  • Get a Fire Tablet or borrow an iPad for the Skype defense of my dissertation
  • Learn self-checkout at Wal-Mart


  • My weight is on a plateau, but I do go to Weight Watchers so I didn't gain back the 40 pounds I have lost. Lose 10 to 15 pounds to add to weight I have kept off.
  • Use walker when ice outside so I do not fall again.
  • Use the gym at my apartment three times a week.


  • 2017 Bible Reading Plan

  • Consistent prayer life. Ask others how can I pray for you. Continue going to my church prayer meetings once a week.
  • Encourage others--give them warm fuzzies and only constructive criticism when asked or if wise.
  • Visit the residents at the nursing home where I stayed for three weeks. 
  • Join the church in Huntsville I am active in.


  • Defend dissertation successfully.
  • Read more books. 


  • Visit sights in Alabama and maybe elsewhere. 
  • Read novels.
  • Find TV shows to enjoy. I really didn't watch TV much as a caregiver for my late husband.
  • Wear hats to church often.
  • Enjoy Southern culture.

  • Paper decluttering
  • Clothes--get rid go them and only wear what looks good on me
  • Kitchen--only keep what I use


  • Consolidate four credit cards for a lower rate and pay off as much as I can this year. Used credit too much during my caregiving years.
  • Save
  • Use IRA withdrawal for dog Ziggy’s operation, etc.
  • No new credit cards

How about you?
Do you have similar goals?