Christmas I Will Never Forget

When my nephew was six (6 years old) my father who had chronic emphysema and Asthma told us that he wanted to play Santa for my nephew. Well, my father went out in his garage and got dressed up with his Santa Claus outfit. This really was a struggle with Santa's beard by his nose. The family had this all planned that my father would ring the front door bell of his home and we would have my nephew answer the door. Eveything went very well as planned. so my nephew answered the door and told us Santa Claus was here. So he took Santa by the hand and ushered him over to a high backed chair.My nephew had no idea who it was until he looked down and said "Santa you wear the same shoes as my Gramps".

Grandma Bozant

My grandma came to live with us when I was 11 she loved being outside she spent most of her time in the backyard. My grandma was always busy hanging clothes on the line, weeding, or sweeping the patio the moment I would enter the back yard I would hear her song (usually in French) she sang as she worked along with adding little dance steps. She was a small spunky woman only 4’11” she had nine boys most of them died at birth. Another son was killed in a trolley car accident while he was selling newspapers. Only three of the nine lived to adulthood, my dad was the baby. My grandpa died when my dad was a small boy, grandma never remarried, she cleaned houses so she could support her family. I m

A Time to Celebrate

My mother believed in celebrating not only holidays but momentous occasions in life - big or small - and passed on her love of honoring these special times in a way that was fun, meaningful and filled with anticipation and love. As a result, our family celebrated far more holidays than those listed on a traditional calendar. Like her own mother, Mom adored children and believed that they should be protected from the tough realities that adults can face; as a result, she was lovingly strict about our activities, curfews, and created a home environment that offered structure and safe haven from the world. Amidst the endless demands that she faced as the mother of six (her youngest with Down Sy


I would like to share my personal story on how grateful I am for the Helpline staff at Alzheimer's Orange County: My grandmother was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in 2015; the first person in our family to be diagnosed with dementia. Little did I know that the organization I work for would become the organization I rely on for support. Last holiday season, my grandmother really started to decline. We knew the usual routine of dinner, games and presents was going to be different this year, but we weren't sure how different. My grandmother could no longer play her favorite game of dominoes as counting became a challenge. It was time for me to accept that we needed help on how to make the

True Story

About 9 years ago Doctor Zona a psychiatrist called Guardian Angels Homes, seeking placement for someone with the name of Carolyn. We were her last option. No family and if we did not accept her she would have to live in a psychiatric hospital. He promised me if I brought her to all her Doctor appointments, if we were strict with her medications we would succeed. Carolyn had about 5 major illnesses. With the help of Dr Heitland we have succeed that she has had a comfortable life. For the past 9 years I have been her protector, her advisor, her mother. I have been her everything. Carolyn needed structure but she needed someone to trust. I have been taken her to the store, to buy her c

Holiday visits may expose truths about aging parents: 10 SIGNS THEY MAY NEED HELP

Visiting aging parents over the holidays may have brought to light that assistance is needed. But determining what type can be a daunting task. There are many senior housing options and home care services that are available for families to tap into these days. There are 10 warning signs that may indicate they need assistance: Mail and bills are left to pile up. The simple act of opening and filing mail become overwhelming. Managing a checking account can also become to much for a parent to handle. The house is cluttered or unkempt. This is especially troubling if a parent has always been neat and orderly. Food in the refrigerator is uneaten or spoiled. Shopping, cooking and cleaning become t

Christmas = Mom

My mom, Ida Purchiaroni Shafer, was technically a senior, but had more energy than some of my friends! She was only 62 when we lost her to pancreatic cancer in 1995 – diagnosed right before Easter, she was gone by July 31st. I still miss her so much…especially at Christmas. It was if the heart went out of our family…at least for a while. We were so lost that first Christmas without her, but we were so thankful to be able to reflect on all the ways she made the holidays meaningful for us and everyone we knew. Because Christmas meant family, and to my mom – everyone was family! Here’s how it was – all through school, for the two weeks before Christmas, our house was baking-central. There were

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