Posts Tagged ‘Piano’

Dear Santa… A Child’s Wish For Christmas At Grandma’s House

santa reading letters

Dear Santa,

Last year I asked you if you could help us have Christmas at Grandma’s house. We had it at what mommy calls ‘the home” instead. It just isn’t the same Santa. Mommy says that’s just the way it is. We are going there again this year because Grandma is still sick. I know she has doctors, why can’t they fix her so we can have her at home? A little while ago, I don’t think she knew who I was and I was her favorite she always whispered to me.

Maybe you can fix her Santa. I miss her smile. My mommy cries and says “that’s just the way it is” I miss Christmas at Grandma’s. The home just isn’t the same. There are some people there that scare me. There are some who just sit there and never move. Mommy says Christmas is about Jesus being born and not about you. She talks a lot to Jesus lately. She talks to him about Grandma, but still cries. We all want to know why Grandma got sick, mommy asks Jesus all the time. I don’t know why daddy left us two years ago. Mommy says he didn’t like how much time and money she was spending on Grandma. Santa why can’t we just have a Christmas at Grandma’s house as a family like we used to?
Anonymous Loving child

Use Music to Engage those with Dementia

alz music connect horizontal FOOTER banner

Alzheimer’s Music Connect has some beautiful music to ease the pain of dementia and help you create some wonderful moments, which will last a life time.   I only which my mother was still alive,so I could share with her the new Christmas CD they just released – Memories – The Songs and Spirit of Christmas.  I know she would have loved listening to it, even though the last four years she could no longer sing the words.  Holiday music always put a smile on her has and she would release small giggles of joy as she listened to the music and tapped her fingers and toes to the rhythm.

Click here to listen to some samples of the CD or MP3.

Alz music Connenct MemofChristCover2Click Here to buy the MP3

Altus Oscillation Enhanced Music. Electroencephalography (EEG) testing, which measures electrical impulses occurring in the brain, of this patent pending process conducted with Alzheimer’s and Dementia sufferers, included some or all of the following results:

  • Amplified brain activity in the frontal or parietal lobe;
  • Greater alertness to the present moment;
  • Demonstrated calmness and contentment;
  • Became animated by singing or humming along with the music; and
  • Showed increased brain activity.

Altus Oscillation™—enhanced music will have the same effect on non-Alzheimer’s/Dementia listeners.

Here is a collection you can listen to year round.

Alz Music connect variety pack coverHere is what you will find with this collection.

CD 1: Big Band Medleys (New York City Studio Orchestra) of Al Jolson, Roseland, Boogie Woogie, Dixieland, Palladium Days, Perez Prado – Tito Puente Latin,  Be Bop For Dancing, Stan Kenton (Includes 42 hit songs such as Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy, Woodchoppers Ball, S’Wonderful and The Saints Go Marching In. [Playing time: 43:34]

CD 2: The Vocal Standards Collection (The Glenn London Quintet) has 15 hits including Blue Moon, Night and Day,  I’m Looking Over a Four Leaf Clover and Sentimental Journey. [Playing time: 46:44]

CD 3: Instrumental Medleys (The Cherry Valley Trio) features 30 all-time favorites such as An Affair To Remember, The Days Of Wine And Roses, Summertime, I Got It Bad, September Song, When You Wish Upon A Star, Ebb Tide and Georgia On My Mind. [Playing time: 52:04]

CD 4: Light Classical Favorites (Molly Stier, piano) include piano works of Bach, Beethoven, Brahms, Chopin, Haydn, Mozart, Schubert, Schumann and other masters. [Playing time: 61:27]

CD 5: Meditation for the Caregiver (Michelle Elan) has 12 soothing and restful tracks — Angel Air, Heaven Tonight, Featherbed,  Gentle Breath, The Dreamer and more. [Playing time: 53:48]

“Accepting the Challenge — Providing the BEST CARE for PEOPLE with DEMENTIA” (Teepa Snow) [Viewing time: 2:39:09]

This multi-disciplinary training program is used throughout the world to help both professional and family Caregivers provide the best dementia care possible.Its content, divided into 4 modules, provides interactive classroom lectures and demonstrations including interactions with people with dementia.

Divided into four separate modules for progressive learning, Accepting the Challenge provides training on multiple levels for all learning styles. Interactive classroom lecture and demonstration, for example, is followed by on-site interactions with actual assisted living residents to show both the use and effectiveness of the techniques.

Each training module is 45 minutes and covers these important topics:
Module 1: What is Dementia? / Symptoms of Alzheimer’s
Module 2: Physical Approach / Communication Skills
Module 3: Offering Assistance / Evaluating Cognitive Levels
Module 4: Meaningful Days (Activities) / Problem Behavior

The DVD also features review capabilities for specific segments within each module and a testing section that allows learners to demonstrate proficiency and receive continuing education credits for dementia-specific training. This valuable training DVD was produced by Alzheimer’s North Carolina, Inc.

For Additional Resources on Dementia and Caregiving

Click Below

102814 ASR lisa hirsch alz music connect

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Alzheimer’s Speaks through Music

Igniting What’s Possible & Sparking Lives

Author:  Jennifer Anderson, Consultant

When a loved one is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia, the idea of a normal, purposeful life can seem impossible.  With dementia, victims can be slowly robbed of their memories, their identity, their purpose, and their passion.  Dementia is often described as the “slow goodbye” and is as difficult for the family as it is for the individual diagnosed. After a recent diagnosis, Beverly Urness and her daughter Karen wanted to challenge the norm and preserve as much as they could, for as long as they could.


When a move to a memory care facility was imminent, Karen wanted support that would keep her mother’s memories and identity alive. She found it at Summit Place, a SilverCrest Property partnering with Lifesprk.  Together, Silvercrest and Lifesprk believe that igniting what’s possible in every client’s life is essential to creating a powerful, meaningful experience regardless of diagnosis or prognosis.  The goal is to create a “spark” for people in the second half of life.  They do so by discovering one’s needs and wishes, prioritizing what’s important, and then creating and implementing a plan so that sparks can fly.

Beverly’s “spark” was not hard to uncover – she has a profound love for music and sharing it with others.  Over the past 40 years, Beverly taught piano lessons to over 100 students, with as many as 25 to 30 at one time.  Her daughter Karen was one of her students and commented, “Mom will teach anyone who will sit down with her on the piano bench.”  Beverly proves this theory when Amber Daggs, Lifesprk Life Care Manager, brings her children into work.  Beverly takes time with each child teaching them the fundamentals of piano while demonstrating patience, discipline, and fun.   Sharing her talent and knowledge with others provides her with purpose and brings out the best in her.  This is what a sparked life looks like!

On May 14th, Beverly made her public musical debut at Summit Place.  She performed several songs from memory and lead a sing-along with her neighbors.   The place was filled with abundant joy and glorious music.   Often times, music provides another form of communication when the spoken word may not be possible for those with dementia.  Music Therapist Dan Anderson said, “Songs and their memories are like jumpstarting a car.  Sometimes it takes a bit to recollect it, but once you remember the song, it can trigger many memories.”


Familiar songs resonating the living room that day including This Land is Your Land, I’ve Been Working on the Railroad, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, America the Beautiful, Take Me Out to the Ballgame, and Beverly’s favorite – Happy Birthday.When people applauded her and provided compliments, Beverly responded, “Thank you, but you’re looking at a novice.”

Beverly’s love for music coupled with a commitment from Lifesprk and Silvercrest to ignite what’s possible in people in the second half of life, is allowing her to keep her memories, purpose, passion, and identity alive.  Beverly will be sharing her talents every week at Summit Place by performing, giving lessons, and leading sing alongs.  Old memories are making new memories!  Play on Beverly, Play on!

 Please check out:

Lifespk by clicking here

Silvercrest Senior Living by clicking here

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