My youngest daughter got married last week. Since she loves to cook (I do not), I decided that the perfect wedding present for her would be to create her own recipe box filled with our family recipes that she could take with her. That way she would be taking good memories of home and the many times we cooked those items together throughout her life too.
Yesterday I reached for a perfume bottle with just a few sprays left in it, and then stopped myself from using it because if I used it, then it would be gone. I had to laugh when I realized that I’ve been doing that very same thing daily for at least a year.
People always ask me if my home is in perfect order, well it isn’t always. I do have a home for everything though, and so when it gets chaotic or I need to put everything back where it belongs, it doesn’t take long. You know, I have always been aware of the mental drain that a chaotic home or office environment has on people’s lives, but I recently got a taste of it first-hand.
I had the great fortune of meeting Tom Ponche last week. Tom, an eldercare advisor, works for A Place For Mom which is a free online service for seniors and their families. They offer free eldercare advice and referrals. Since assisting seniors and their families is one of our specialties, Tom will be using our team as a resource when seniors need help downsizing, de-cluttering and preparing their home for sale, getting their paperwork in order and to assist families with the physical mess that is left behind after the loss of a loved one when their emotions are already running high.
Today marks the 7-year anniversary since my younger brother, Mike, died from leukemia. He had just celebrated his 39th birthday 2 weeks before he died. Before my family and I could even begin to deal with the emotional loss we were experiencing, we were faced with the physical task of sorting through Mike’s many belongings to find any legal, insurance or medical paperwork he had in order to prepare for his funeral. Mike had documented his final wishes in a Will but since he never got around to signing it, his Will was ignored and not considered legally binding. This problem only added to the overwhelming physical and mental burden we were already carrying because of his death.
I worked with a grieving mother last week who tragically lost her young son 6 weeks ago. Because the death was so unexpected, the family was not prepared for the financial burden of a funeral. There was a enormous outpouring of support, both financially and otherwise. This mother had been facing a gigantic pile of cards, scribbled notes of who gave what, jumbled notes of people’s addresses, etc. Everytime she would attempt to sit down and write thank you notes she was overwhelmed by the task because of this completely disorganized pile. We worked together to sort through the notes and piles so that she could begin writing the thank you notes. By working together I was able to keep her focused on writing one card at a time while I attempted to make sense of her notes. Granted we spent 3 hours together, she had completed 23 cards by the time I left and has a system set up to finish the rest. The piles are under control and she was amazed at how simple the task looks now. I love my job!