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Pickleball

There is a pickleball craze that is happening all over the US.  Have you played it?  This month it is in the spotlight.

According to one website pickleball players number in the low millions and the number appears to be growing.

You can play the game if you are young and or old.  You’ll see the rules are not terribly hard and it can be a moderate workout.

You need a court, a racquet and a ball.  Simple.  Courts these days are easy to find in most communities.

The rules are not too overcomplicated either.  If you’ve ever played ping-pong or tennis some of the rules will sound familiar.  Expert players can be very helpful to beginners.

The Serve 

You must serve underhand, below the waist and it must land in the opposite corner of the opposing players.

The Score

You can only score when serving and you get a point when the opposing team cannot return the volley or hits the ball out of bounds. 

The Fault

Just as in tennis if you hit the ball into the net or it bounces twice it’s a fault.  You also cannot hit an opposing player.

There are other rules about dead balls, non-volley zones and timeouts.  You can learn these on the court when you go to play.

With the right mindset and a desire to have fun you can become a picklehead along with the millions of other Americans.

Private Home Health Care enjoys watching pickleball but as of yet we have not picked up the paddle and ball to join in but we love the atmosphere.

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Patriot’s Day

Private Home Health Care would like to wish everyone a Happy Patriot’s Day.

While not a federal holiday, those in Massachusetts have a long weekend on this third Monday in April.

Patriot’s Day began to commemorate the beginning of fighting during the American Revolution with the Battle of Lexington and Concord.  

You may not have heard of Massachusetts Frederic T. Greenhalge but back in 1894 he thought celebrating this day was a perfect replacement for a long held day of fasting and prayer called “Fast Day”.

Additionally, Governor Greenhalge decided to also honor the four Massachusetts men who lost their lives in the Baltimore Riot of 1861. 

These members of the 6th Massachusetts Volunteer Militia ran into mobs against the Northern aggressors at the beginning of the Civil War.

These days Patriot’s Day is known as Marathon Monday by the thousands of marathon runners who come from around the world to take on the challenge.

Many of you here in Massachusetts have this day off.  You may head into a Boston Red Sox game or go along the route to watch the Boston Marathon runners.   The marathon started in 1897 and the baseball team added a game starting in 1959.

Did you know that only Maine and Wisconsin celebrate Patriot’s Day in the U.S.?  The only difference is that their holiday is always on April 19.

We hope that whoever has the day off can enjoy themselves. For those working hopefully traffic and your work is a bit easier on this Patriot’s Day.

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Tips for Grocery Shopping

This is a bit of a different topic for us but in case you haven’t noticed the price of groceries have gone up. We felt it might be helpful to share some tips on ways you can get the most for your money at the grocery store.

  1. Plan your meals for the week and buy the food for those meals. This can help so you don’t have to run to the store later in the week.
  2. Check the supplies you have in your kitchen and fridge and make a list of what you need. Stick to that list when shopping.
  3. Check local store flyers to find what is on sale.  If you have a freezer and you have room, stock up on meats or foods you can freeze for later.
  4. Have a meatless meal one or two days a week.  It is healthy for you and it can save money.
  5. Watch the prices so you can compare and know what is a bargain.  Be sure to check unit prices to make sure you have the best overall price.
  6. Buy a Sunday paper if you are able to get coupons for groceries from it.
  7. Must you have a name brand or can you get a generic brand?  Some store brand items are just as good as the major brands.
  8. Think about joining a wholesale club.  Quantities can be large but if you have storage space it can save money.  Items can last longer before you need to buy it again.
  9. Online grocery shopping can be convenient but is often more expensive.  You could try a trip to the grocery store instead.
  10. If you pay by credit card, see what perks you get when you use a particular card.  You might get cashback or other rewards from your shopping.

Private Home Health Care shops every week so we understand how expensive it can get to feed a family.  We hope some of these tips are helpful to help you spend as wisely as possible.

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National Siblings Day

In 1995 Claudia Evart lost both her brother and sister at an early age.  She founded the day because she realized how important siblings are in your life.  She has also founded the Siblings Day Foundation.

Your siblings can have a profound effect on your life, even more so than your parents.  

This came recently from a study of male adult development from data gathered since 1938.  Dr. Richard Waldinger wrote a book called The Good Life.

If you read this book his findings show that  those of us with “good relationships keep us happier, healthier, and help us live longer.”

Other studies shine a light on the positive effects of siblings:

  • As an adolescent, your siblings may have validated your beliefs and feelings which helped your self esteem.
  • A good sibling relationship can have positive effects on your academic performance.
  • If you are in a difficult situation like divorce, low income or parental mental illness a stable older sibling can help you to be well adjusted even in these settings.
  • Finally, support and closeness with siblings lead to less loneliness and depression.  These could also help you feel overall satisfied with your life as you age.

Additionally, some other studies have found evidence that lifelong relationships with siblings have an effect on your well-being in a negative way too.  Participants with difficult sibling relationships at ages 18-19 can be more likely to have depression and to use mood-altering drugs by age 50.

Think back to the days of growing up with brothers and sisters.  You surely had fights, large or small but there were likely also times when you played games or shared toys.  Many lifelong lessons were learned.

Private Home Health Care hopes that on this National Siblings Day you will find the time to reach out and tell your siblings how much you care.  As adults, your ties can remain strong and you can get great supports and have fun times with your siblings.

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Afternoon Tea

The month of April has a variety of national days.  One of these days is National Afternoon Tea Day.

If you have lived a long time you may remember how afternoon tea was a special event.  

Afternoon tea could be during the week or on weekends.

When you went to an afternoon tea you would have choices of a snack as well as types of tea.  The United Kingdom high society started this tradition so English Breakfast or Earl Gray was usually served.  

As time went on and this spread across the pond, many other teas were offered.  The snacks included but were not limited to finger sandwiches, small cakes, petit four pastries and scones. 

For those living in the Boston area, there were many places where afternoon tea was a standard.  The Ritz Carlton was known for a fabulous “high” tea.  Travel north of Boston and you would find snacks and tea at the Wenham Tea House.

The tea and snacks were helpful when the dinner meals were served later in the evening, 8:00 or 9:00 pm.  You would be able to have tea and snacks and still be hungry for dinner.

Today our lives are very busy and taking time to travel someplace for tea and snacks seems like a luxury.  You stop at Starbucks or another place that offers tea on the go.  

You may have time to stay and work on your computer but free time to eat and snack is hard to fit in.

Making this a national month is an attempt to revive the tradition and to allow us to slow down a bit and be mindful.  Your tea drinking could lead to stress relief and a time to catch up with friends.

Private Home Health Care loves the tradition of afternoon tea.  We also need to try and heed our own words to slow down and take time to sip a nice cup of hot tea and relax!!

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National No Housework Day

This Sunday, April 8 is a fun national day and maybe a good day to do something enjoyable.

National No Housework Day is a day to relax, guilt free.  A day for you to forget all about work that needs to be done around your room, your apartment, your condo or your house.

Perhaps you always do this on Sunday but for those of you who don’t make a change.  You could try and get it all done on Saturday or maybe not!

There are so many ways to spend time on this Sunday rather than housework.

You can try and get caught up in a good book.  Curl up in a chair or on your couch.

If you have kids, choose a game to play as a family.

Do you like to play cards?  Gather a group and have some fun and laughs.

Catch up on that television series you have been hoping to watch.

Watch a new movie or revisit an old favorite.

You may need to use will power to ignore dust or dirty floors.  Are they dishes in the sink?  Don’t look.  Tell yourself that it’s only for one day.  

Truthfully, maybe the dishes are only for a day but the rest might be for a week but isn’t it worth it to take a day off?

Private Home Health Care likes to keep a clean house but this Sunday we are going to put our feet up and relax!  

#NationalNoHouseWorkDay

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National Walking Day

Yes, it’s early April and once again National Walking Day.

When you walk it is a low maintenance way of keeping your body in shape.  The health benefits range from helping you, keep away heart disease, strengthening your bones and helping with weight control.

The question for you when it comes to walking is “how do you make it more interesting?”  You may have been walking thirty minutes a day for a while now and getting restless or bored.

Here are a few suggestions to take the boredom out of walking.

Try mixing it up a bit.  If you walk in the street change your environment.  Add some light weights to your walk. Are you walking on a treadmill?  You can vary your terrain or intervals.

Be mindful on your walk.  See if you can hear different sounds.  Listen to your breathing.  Look for different things in your path.

Add a friend.  The time can pass more quickly and differently when you are talking with a friend while you walk.  You might even lose track of time.

Listen to something different on your walk.  Switch up your music or podcast.  Try listening to an audiobook for a change.

Walk with purpose meaning if you have errands to do plan your walk around stores you can visit.  You’ll have a healthy walk and get things done.  A win-win!

Taking a walk is a relaxing and gentle way to add a healthy habit to your life.  

Private Home Health Care hopes that you have found the suggestions helpful.  We enjoy walking, whether on the treadmill inside or walking outside and we hope you do too.

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April Fool’s Day

Today is a day for you to be prepared.  There could be pranksters in your path who would like nothing better than to fool you on this first day of April.  It could be a big prank or it could be a small prank. Be on guard!.

You may be the prankster too!  Who are you planning on tricking?

April first is a fun day and it definitely brings happiness and hopefully plenty of smiles.  A teacher friend I know tells her Kindergarteners that she made brownies and then she gives them a brown letter “E.”  

Have you ever wondered how the tricks behind April 1 ever began?  We did too and it turns out it’s still a mystery.  There are some ideas but no one seems to know for certain.

One thought is that it started back in 1852 when the Julian calendar switched over to the Gregorian calendar.  People who were slow to move to the change celebrated the new year from late March to April 1. They were called April Fools. 

It was in Britain when April Fool’s Day really started to take off in the 18th century.  The Scottish people spread the holiday over two days.

On the first day people sent unaware friends on phony errands called “hunting the gowk.”  A gowk is a cuckoo bird the symbol for a fool.

The second day was for pranks.  On Tailie Day, you would see fake tails put on the back of a person or even “kick me” signs.

There may be more mysteries behind the origins of April Fool’s Day but for now Private Home Health Care wants you to be on your “toes” and look out for tricks today!  

We also hope you have some fun moments in your day.  It’s a great way to start off the month! 

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Easter Season

For the 2.6 billion Christians in the world, yesterday and the two days are the most important.  Christmas is the only other holiday of such importance. 

As a Christian you celebrate three holy days.  Holy or Maundy Thursday which was yesterday.  This commemorates the Lord’s Last Supper.

Today is Good Friday which commemorates the death of Jesus who Christians believe is the Savior of the World.  

You might wonder why it is called “Good” Friday. It is not good in the traditional sense but rather the redemption and reconciliation that is brought between humanity and God.  It is a sad but very holy day. 

The most holy day of the three days is Easter Sunday when the Savior is resurrected up to Heaven.  For Christians is it this redemption for all that they too will rise after they die.

Private Home Health Care has learned that the worldwide Christian community has been increasing and is expected to continue to increase.  Between 2000 and 2022 Christianity rose 1.18% annually.

As of 2020, Christians made up 31% of world religions.  The Christians include Roman Catholics, Protestants, Orthodox and Anglicans.

You may be surprised to learn who has the largest number of Christians.  The list below is the number of Christians from largest to smallest by continent.

Africa

Asia

Latin America

Oceana (islands scattered mostly in the Pacific Ocean)

Northern America

Europe

Private Home Health Care wishes everyone a very holy Good Friday and a very blessed Easter.

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Whole Grains

Do you eat any whole grains?  Whole grains are a delicious option to add to your healthy diet.

There are many whole grains to choose from like, whole oats, whole wheat, whole grain rye, buckwheat, bulgur wheat, millet, whole barley, brown rice and quinoa.  Buckwheat and millet are gluten-free.

You can eat the grains at any time of the day, breakfast, lunch or dinner.  These are easily found at grocery stores and recipes for any of them are available online. 

 If you are a traditionalist or if you just prefer paper, pick up a book for recipes to try.

Whole grains are extremely healthy because they are packed with nutrients.  Whole grains are enriched with nutrients such as protein, fiber, vitamin B.  They also have minerals such as copper, zinc, iron and magnesium.

Additionally, these powerful grains are full of antioxidants.  These mighty molecules fight off the free radicals in your body that can be very harmful.

Don’t you find it amazing that all of these different whole grains are so healthy for your body?

Whole grain breads, pastas and popcorn are all super healthy additions to a diet.  If you swap out wheat bread for white bread and chickpea or whole wheat pasta for white pasta you will increase your nutrients.

Another option is for you to have a meatless meal and incorporate a whole grain into that meal.  Soups are also a great way to add grains to your diet.

Private Home Health Care understands the benefits of adding whole grains to our diet.  Be adventurous if you haven’t tried whole grains and make your diet a bit healthier.

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