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Older Driver Awareness Week

Back in 2009 the American Occupational Therapy Association started this week.  The group thought that it’s important for all of us to be aware of and help keep safe the older drivers that we know and love.

According to the CDC there are over 44 million of us over the age of 65 in the US.  You may have someone over 65 in your life now.  As you age, your body changes. Your reflexes, sight and hearing can be affected.

Likewise, when you drive you feel independent because you can take care of yourself.  Consequently, independence can help keep a person happy and active. With all this in mind, the week is dedicated to making sure the older drivers in your life are traveling safely.

You should check in and see if the driver knows the following safety tips?  Ask them:

  • Do you remember all the rules of the road to obey?
  • If possible, can you try not to drive at night?
  • Can you avoid driving in bad weather?
  • Do you have a route to follow?
  • You don’t drink and drive right?  (that applies to all of us!)
  • Do you get your vision checked once a year?

You can talk to them to make sure they are not afraid to drive. It doesn’t have to be scary, especially if the driver is careful and watchful.

Private Home Health Care knows many seniors who have chosen to drive locally.  This week we hope that you can take some time to check on an elderly driver.  Make sure they are aware of ways to stay safe while driving.  It’s a responsibility we all share for the greater good in our community. 


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National Mousse Day

On this last day of November we are feeling a bit tempted by a little devil sitting on our shoulder.  It’s National Mousse Day. Do we write about this yummy but not necessarily one hundred percent healthy food?

Private Home Health Care has decided that yes we will.  Every once in a while we need to stray a bit from our healthy diet and enjoy something delicious. That little devil won this round.

The word mousse is French for “foam”.  Some say mousse originated from France in the 1700’s from a master confectioner.  There may be some other origins as well but that works for us!

Usually you use egg whites to give the mousse a light and fluffy texture but that’s not your only option.  A mousse can also be savory and very creamy.  We are thinking of a salmon or smoked salmon mouse for example.

You may find recipes to use mousse in pastries and parfaits.  That sounds even more decadent doesn’t it??  Additionally, try topping off the mousse with a light and fluffy whipped cream.  Perfection with a chocolate mousse.  Add chocolate shavings and it’s complete.

Julia Child of course has a recipe but boy is it a lot of work. Private Home Health Care found a chocolate mousse recipe that’s not too tricky.  Because we just can’t help ourselves, the recipe is easy and a bit healthier.  Try this one and don’t give way to guilt. Enjoy it!  

Here you go:

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Spinach and Squash Month

The month of November highlights delicious spinach and squash.   We have talked about the versatility and health benefits of spinach so we turn today to squash.

You will find a Native American root in the word squash.  It means raw or uncooked vegetables.  That’s an interesting derivative since the various forms of squash come from a flower and contain seeds so they are considered a fruit.

Two kinds of squash come to mind, summer and winter.  Winter squash has the harder shell which comes from growing on a vine.  You can easily find acorn, spaghetti, butternut and kabocha in grocery stores at all times of year.  Try steaming it, roasting it or in a smooth puree.

Look at the health benefits you’ll see in squash. You’ll find vitamins, minerals and antioxidants:

Vitamin C – these can slow macular degeneration and help prevent cataracts

Vitamin B6 – this vitamin can help fight off depression

Beta-carotene – good to help protect your skin, but don’t over consume

In addition:  magnesium, calcium, iron and Vitamin A

Squash is low in calories and carbohydrates.  One cup of butternut squash has only 63 calories and 16 carbs.  That sounds like a healthy food to add to your diet.

Private Home Health Care loves all kinds of squash.  We love to make butternut squash soup and enjoy it with a fresh piece of wheat bread.  Try one squash or try them all and enjoy the great taste and health benefits!

Here is a link to a butternut soup recipe:

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Happy Thanksgiving!

Private Home Health Care would like to wish everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving!

On this eve of the holiday we hope that you will have safe travels if you are driving or flying. 

No matter if you are traveling near or far we hope that you will be with loving family and friends.  May your dinner be delicious and may you share some happy memories together.

We are very grateful for our family and all the gifts we have in our lives.

Be safe and enjoy! 

Your Friends at Private Home Health Care

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November is a month to honor all those who care for people in their homes or in their local communities.  The nurses, home care aids, therapists and social workers number in the millions.

It is estimated that each day, 10,000 people in America turn 65.  As you age that could turn into a lot of care as time goes on.  

You may know someone who is in need of care now.  If the person is still in their house and living on their own, home care is often the best choice.  Your home is where your heart is.  You know your surroundings and you are comfortable.  It is a place where you have thrived.  A home care aid can come in and help you with whatever you need.  

We have found that you can heal better in your own home.  This can ease fears and can provide comfort to you and your loved ones.

Private Home Health Care knows that during this month you and I have many things to be thankful for. Try and take some time to show your appreciation for any home health care aids, nurses and others who help with home and hospice care.  There is a lot of caring going around.

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Gluten-Free Diet Awareness

Do you know someone who follows a gluten-free diet?  If so they are part of the 1% of Americans who have Celiac’s Disease.  

Celiac’s disease is your body’s intolerance for any food that contains gluten.  You’ll find gluten in many foods.  These include wheat, barley, rye, malt, brewer’s yeast and oats.  If you check food labels, many foods contain some of these items.

If you eat gluten it affects your small intestine and its lining.  Consequently, there is damage to your lining and it keeps nutrients from being absorbed.  

After eating a food with gluten you could experience diarrhea, fatigue, weight, iron deficiency and anemia.  It can be very serious and super uncomfortable.

Your diet needs to change but that doesn’t mean that you can’t eat good food.  As with many of us trying to eat healthier you can eat lots of vegetables and fruits.  Beans, nuts, seeds, fish and lean meats are gluten free too.  There is gluten-free pasta and grains like rice, millet, quinoa and buckwheat.

Additionally, you need to be cautious when you eat at a restaurant.  Be sure to check with the servers to see if eggs are cooked on a separate grill from pancakes or french fries are cooked in a separate oil from chicken fingers for example.

The good news is that there are a lot of great resources for you.  

Private Home Health Care knows there are good cookbooks, dietitians and support groups where you can share recipes. You can also check out this website for lots of good information.


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National Book Awards Week

This week begins the National Book Awards Week as created by the National Book Foundation.  Have you heard of this before?

“The mission of the National Book Foundation is to celebrate the best literature published in the United States, expand its audience, and ensure that books have a prominent place in our culture.”

Consequently, the Foundation focuses on blossoming authors and it covers five categories.  The categories are fiction, non-fiction, poetry, translated literature and young people’s literature.

The judges are independent of the National Book Foundation. There are only five finalists in each category and from a list of 1,772 titles submitted by publishers!   

The winners for each category will be announced on November 16. You can find the ceremony on youTube and Facebook.  Winners are awarded $10,000 and a bronze medal and a statue.  

Reading a book at any age is a wonderful way for you to learn about something new.  It can help you escape for a bit to another place or time.  You may feel relaxed reading a book, especially if it holds you attention or touches you in the heart.  

Print books are still very popular.  You can purchase them or likewise get them from your local library. Do you prefer reading on a Kindle or iPad?  Those are options too.

There is a good free site to search for books you might like to read and there is no cost:

Private Home Health Care enjoys reading and we hope that you can find a good book to relax with.  You might even try starting a book group to discuss what you’ve read.  Find some friends and start reading!

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Happy Veteran’s Day

Private Home Health Care sends a warm thank you to all of our country’s veterans.  We wish you a very Happy Veteran’s Day.

This day to honor America’s veterans for their services and patriotism in defending our country for the common good is important.

A look at the history of the holiday is interesting with a few twists and turns.

To begin, in November of 1919, Woodrow Wilson proclaimed Armistice Day after the end of World War I, “The Great War”.  The Treaty of Versailles was signed on June 28,1919.  It was called The War to End All Wars.   

Origin of the date . . .

Fighting between the Allied Forces and Germany had ceased due to a temporary cessation of hostilities or an Armistice. This happened on the eleventh hour, of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, November 11, 1918.

A turn  . . .

An official act in 1938 created the legal holiday of Armistice Day.  The name changed after World War II in an amendment to the act and this is how it became Veteran’s Day.

A twist  . . .

In 1968, there was a time when the holiday was moved to a Monday.  The thought was to keep all the legal holidays on Monday to avoid confusion.  This had the opposite effect.  

It turns out there was a lot of confusion so President Ford in 1975 moved the official holiday back to November 11.  This is where we are today.

Our country has been involved in a number of wars.  Private Home Health Care hopes that you can thank a veteran you know today. We thank them all for their service.

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Crafts for Seniors

Private Home Health Care is thinking about Seniors today.  If you are a Senior do you have any free time?  Would you like to have fun, be creative and keep you busy? Different crafts are a way to do just that.

We found a website for seniors that have a lot of suggestions.  You’ll find  links to sites that can teach you how to do some of the crafts.  Want to have some fun?

In addition to filling up free time and having fun, crafts can help you with motor skills.  The time spent on crafts can also be a time for social interactions because you can do them together.  Furthermore, activities and crafts can help make you feel less stressful.

Here are a few examples from the site:

Do you like painting or coloring?

  • Coloring books – there are coloring books for adults.  You can even find some in large print.  Get some crayons or markers and get started.
  • Rock painting – you can find or buy some small rocks, use acrylic paint and create some designs or messages.

Are you a knitter?  Do you like to sew?

  • Make a heating bag – make sure your material is cotton!
  • Dish cloths – these can be a handy gift.  Watch a youtube video to learn.
  • Coffee cozies – hot coffee cups can use a knitted cozy to ward off the heat.

Other ideas include:

  • Pressed flowers – you just need flowers, wax paper and a heavy book
  • Homemade greeting cards – save money and make your own! 
  • Paper flowers – these can help decorate a room
  • Beaded bracelets – watch a video and learn
  • Birdhouses – if you like working with wood this could be for you.

Private Home Health Care loves to create things and also keep busy!  This website has great ideas and many links to instructions to help guide you with your creations.  Here is the link:

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Epilepsy Awareness Month

Epilepsy is a general term for recurring seizures. There are many different types of epilepsy as well as types of seizures. It cannot be cured but there is medication to help control it.  This month highlights the disease for awareness and continued research for a cure.

Epilepsy affects children and adults.  Currently in the US there are 3.4 million people living with epilepsy.

If you are diagnosed, there are more than 20 different anti-seizure medications available.  You would work with your doctor to find the right one.  It might be that a combination of medications would be right for you.  

According to the Mayo Clinic more than half those diagnosed with epilepsy will be helped with the first medication.  There are also instances where medication can be stopped. 

It is important for you to understand  your condition. You should keep taking your medication once prescribed. Keep a record of your seizures.  Notice if there are any patterns.  You might be able to avoid some triggers.  Get enough sleep and maintain a well-balanced diet. Regular exercise is also important.

Private Home Health Care recommends that you learn more about epilepsy.  The Epilepsy Foundation website is Visit it to learn more about the disease and what you can to raise awareness. 

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