Stay connected throughout the dementia journey

Using Creativity to Live Successfully with Dementia

January 17, 2017

“Creativity is evident in every one of us,” says Michelle Niedens, Director of Education, Programs and Public Policy, Alzheimer’s Association Heart of America Chapter. Every time I hear Michelle talk about the creative aspects of living with dementia, I am moved. I was so honored to have Michelle speak at my book launch for Connecting in the Land…

Live Well with Dementia: The Pygmalion Effect

January 10, 2017

“This is one of my favorite songs. What do you think of it, Fran?” We were sitting in Mom’s room in the memory care community, listening to a recording of The Very Thought of You.  Even though my mother could no longer answer this question, I liked hearing my father ask it.  He honored Mom…

Adapting to Dementia: Laurie Scherrer’s Inspiring Story

January 3, 2017

“I’m having a slow day,” Laurie Scherrer says, when I call her Pennsylvania home for our scheduled conversation on adapting to dementia. “So bear with me.” It was easy to bear with Laurie, as she is bright, positive, articulate, insightful, and authentic. I met her during a telephone interview for the esteemed podcast, Alzheimer’s Speaks,…

Sharing Your Caregiver’s Story

December 27, 2016

My mother’s Alzheimer’s drove me to write. My writing inspired me to speak. I have received enormous pleasure from connecting with people all over the world, sharing my stories from Connecting in the Land of Dementia and from Love in the Land of Dementia. Now, I’m offering you tips for sharing your caregiver’s story.   It All Started…

Finding the Holiday’s Spirit

December 20, 2016

This story from Love in the Land of Dementia: Finding Hope in the Caregiver’s Journey celebrates finding the holiday’s spirit. Here’s to a season of peace, light, joy, and meaningful connections. When I walk through the doors of the nursing home, I find my mother in her wheelchair, right in front of the medication cart, right behind the…

One-minute Tips to Boost Your Happiness

December 13, 2016

For three weeks, a small pile of books huddled on the floor of my bedroom, next to the bureau. Every time I saw those books, I thought, “I should put them away.” But I walked past them, too busy. Until I read Amy Newmark’s new book, Simply Happy. One of her tips challenged me. “What…

Enjoy Dementia Inclusive Holiday Cooking

December 6, 2016

“Who prepared this delicious meal?” a friend asked during a holiday dinner. I named my brother Dan, our head chef, first. Then I included the support team—myself, my mom, my daughters and nephews. “Did I help?” Mom whispered as I passed her the mashed potatoes. “You sure did,” I told her. ”You mashed the potatoes,…

Creating a Memorable Dementia-Friendly Movie Experience

November 29, 2016

For months, our Kansas City Movies and Memory team has been working on creating a memorable dementia-friendly movie experience and film series. Ron and I were so lucky to partner with the Heart of America Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association, the Kansas City Public Library, and the Kansas City FilmFest. For our first offering, we wanted a…

A Thanksgiving Love Story: Bringing Home the Gravy

November 22, 2016

Thanksgiving changed the year I went vegetarian. I did not mind giving up the tender, moist turkey or the savory oyster-specked stuffing. But giving up the flavorful flow of mushroom-laden gravy was quite another thing. I watched enviously as my family ladled the luscious liquids over their mashed potatoes, turkey and stuffing. As I nibbled…

Dementia Friendly Holiday Activities

November 15, 2016

At first, the checklist of “can’t do’s” was daunting. No more playing the cutthroat card game Hearts. No more leisurely Scrabble sessions, unabridged dictionary, and bowl of fancy mixed nuts at the ready. No more hunkering in at the movie theater for a sparkling new release. With my mom’s dementia, so many of our traditional…

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Books & Videos

A ‘must read’ for every care partner because it really helps you to look at things differently! This book is very special in the way it provides you with hundreds of suggestions on how to be a good care partner for someone with dementia and enjoy this yourself as well. Deborah inspired me by bringing together so many positive examples of using creativity to engage with people with dementia.”--Marc Wortmann, Executive Director, Alzheimer’s Disease International

“Deborah Shouse’s inspiring book provides caregivers with tools from which to create meaningful, life-enhancing activities that can strengthen their connections. Buy the book, read it, highlight what inspires you. As you make notes and bend pages to personalize this guide, you are creating a family treasure.”--Carol Bradley Bursack, Founder of Minding Our Elders

“Once again, Deborah Shouse delivers a book that softens our hearts and opens our minds to find fun ways to connect to the soul. No matter what our situation in life, no matter what our ability is to communicate, we all crave and need to be connected to one another.”--Lori La Bey, Founder of Alzheimersspeaks website