Joys of Caregiving


 A Blog from Digital Sisterhood Network Founder Ananda Leeke

Photo Credit: AARP.com

Photo Credit: AARP.com

Happy November Digital Sisters,

I believe caregiving is rooted in the spirit of compassionate service. When I serve compassionately and give back to others, my heart opens and fills with joy. Click here to read AARP’s Bulletin on the unexpected joys of caregiving.

Over the years, I have learned that caregiving happens in many ways. It can be a short-term project that a wiser family member, friend, neighbor, colleague, or person needs help with. It can also be a daily, weekly, or monthly series of activities that support the wiser person’s needs as they navigate the aging process, daily life, health concerns, financial matters, or transportation.

Photo Credit: CNet.com

Photo Credit: CNet.com

Recently, I used my digital skills to support a family member’s short-term project. It was a Digital Sisterhood moment for me. Here’s what happened. While I was visiting my 74-year-old aunt one evening, she asked me to give her a tutorial on how to use her brand new tablet. The digital sister inside of me jumped for joy! We spent 90 minutes reviewing her tablet’s features, experimenting with her camera by taking photos and recording short videos, and exploring numerous apps including one that would allow her to read the Holy Bible. She wanted to find one that would be easy for her 97-year-old mother to use for her weekly Bible study class. So we researched options and downloaded several free apps that she plans to show her mother. When we finished the tutorial, my aunt hugged me and told me how much she appreciated my support. I smiled and said it was my pleasure to help her become a digital sister!

Photo Credit: AARP.com

Photo Credit: AARP.com

This month, I invite you to celebrate National Family Caregivers Month by sharing your caregiving stories through AARP’s “I Heart Caregivers” online initiative. “I Heart Caregivers” is set up as a microsite for people to share stories about being a caregiver. It includes a newsletter signup for regular emails about caregiving and links to AARP’s caregiving resources. Check out AARP’s blog about the initiative.

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Disclaimer: This blog post was written in support of Digital Sisterhood Network’s Leadership, Lifestyle and Living Well initiative and participation in AARP’s #CareSupport Campaign.

 

Celebrating Digital Sisterhood Network’s AARP Caregiving Partnership


Photo Credit: AARP.org

Photo Credit: AARP.org

Happy Autumn Digital Sisters!

November begins tomorrow. So does National Family Caregivers Month and the Digital Sisterhood Network’s (DSN) third year anniversary celebration of working with AARP to promote caregiving and resources for America’s 42 million caregivers, many of whom are women and our fellow digital sisters. AARP is a nonprofit organization that helps people who are 50 and over turn their goals and dreams into real possibilities, strengthens communities, and fights for the issues that matter most to families such as healthcare, employment security, and retirement planning.

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DSN started working with AARP’s #CareSupport Campaign as a part of our living well initiative in 2012. Since then, we have been able to share information and resources that have given support to a diverse group of digital sisters and their families. Last year, DSN founder Ananda Leeke worked with AARP staff and bloggers to promote AARP’s caregiving resources and web site at the BlogHer annual conference. We also joined forces with AARP’s Thanks Project to express deep gratitude for the caregiving work provided by caregivers. AARP created ThanksProject.org to encourage and allow individuals to post messages of support and thanksgiving for and about caregivers. We think it is an awesome way to express digital affirmation and gratitude in a public forum that builds a community of support and inspiration. It also informs  others about the important roles caregivers play in their loved ones’ lives.

Photo Credit: AARP.org

Photo Credit: AARP.org

November is a great month to express gratitude for the caregivers in your family, circle of friends, and community. One way you can demonstrate your gratitude is by showing caregivers how to access AARP’s Caregiving Resource Center and Guide to Caregiving (free). The web site has great articles and tips that caregivers can use to support their wellness journey as they care for their loved ones.

Logo by Dariela Cruz

Logo by Dariela Cruz

Disclaimer: This blog post was written in support of Digital Sisterhood Network’s Leadership, Lifestyle and Living Well initiative and participation in AARP’s #CareSupport Campaign.

 

Holiday Caregiving Support: Creating A Caregiver Gratitude Jar or Box


Happy Holidays!

Many of us are connected to people serving as caregivers. One way we can show our support is by creating a Caregiver Gratitude Jar or Box for our caregiver  family members and friends filled with handwritten positive thoughts and thank you notes that express how much we appreciate them.

Creating a Caregiver Gratitude Jar or Box is easy to do and very inexpensive. Start by looking for a plastic or glass jar you can recycle. Clean (wash) it out and create a colorful label that includes the person’s name (Mary’s Gratitude Jar). You can use any type of paper or white label to create it. Stick the label on the jar.

If you don’t want to use a jar, look for a box (shoe box, tissue box, or gift box). Think about covering the box with wrapping paper or another type of paper. Perhaps, you can select paper that represents the caregiver’s favorite color(s). Write the person’s name on a piece of paper or a white label.  Place it on the box.

Fill the jar or box with strips of paper or Post It notes that contain positive quotes, spiritual messages, and your own words of thanksgiving. Make it a group project and ask family and friends to write their words of thanksgiving on the strips of paper or Post It notes. Continue the practice throughout the new year so that the Gratitude Jar or Box stays replenished.

Photo Credit: AARP.org

Photo Credit: AARP.org

You can also thank caregivers by showing them AARP’s Caregiving Resource Center. The web site has great articles and tips that caregivers can use to support their wellness journey as they care for their loved ones. You can now access AARP’s Caregiving Resource Center on your iPad!

Photo Credit: AARP.org

AARP is a nonprofit organization that helps people who are 50 and over turn their goals and dreams into real possibilities, strengthens communities, and fights for the issues that matter most to families such as healthcare, employment security,  and retirement planning.

Logo by Dariela Cruz

AARP Blogger Kitchen Cabinet #CareSupport campaign

Disclaimer: This blog post was written in support of Digital Sisterhood Network’s Leadership, Lifestyle and Living Well initiative and participation in AARP’s #CareSupport Campaign.

AARP #ThanksProject: Saying Thank You to Caregivers in November


Photo Credit: AARP.org

Photo Credit: AARP.org

Happy November! Happy Early Thanksgiving!

This month, the Digital Sisterhood Network is honoring National Family Caregivers Month by joining forces with AARP’s Thanks Project to express deep gratitude for the caregiving work provided by America’s 42 million caregivers, many of whom are women and our fellow digital sisters.  AARP created ThanksProject.org to encourage and allow individuals to post messages of support and thanksgiving for and about caregivers.  We think it is an awesome way to express digital affirmation and gratitude in a public forum that builds a community of support and inspiration. It also informs  others about the important roles caregivers play in their loved ones’ lives. Now that’s a great way to do something special for someone!  And here’s the deal: IT IS FREE and EASY to do. So click here and leave a message that honors a caregiver you know and/or caregivers in general.

Photo Credit: AARP

Photo Credit: AARP

Another way to say thank you to caregivers is by providing resources like AARP’s caregiving guide, Juggling Work and Caregiving by Amy Goyer, an expert in aging and families. Goyer’s book tells her story as a live-in caregiver to her parents and offers insight and inspiration for caregivers.

Photo Credit: AARP.org

Photo Credit: AARP.org

You can also thank caregivers by showing them AARP’s Caregiving Resource Center. The web site has great articles and tips that caregivers can use to support their wellness journey as they care for their loved ones. You can now access AARP’s Caregiving Resource Center on your iPad!

Photo Credit: AARP.org

Photo Credit: AARP.org

AARP is a nonprofit organization that helps people who are 50 and over turn their goals and dreams into real possibilities, strengthens communities, and fights for the issues that matter most to families such as healthcare, employment security,  and retirement planning.

Logo by Dariela Cruz

Logo by Dariela Cruz

AARP Blogger Kitchen Cabinet #CareSupport campaign

AARP Blogger Kitchen Cabinet #CareSupport campaign

 

Disclaimer: This blog post was written in support of Digital Sisterhood Network’s Leadership, Lifestyle and Living Well initiative and participation in AARP’s #CareSupport Campaign.

#DigitalSisterhood Wednesday Celebrates AARP Decide.Create.Share. Initiative & Author Sondra Wright


AARP DC Decide.Create.Share. Event on 9.17.13

AARP DC Decide.Create.Share. Event on 9.17.13

Happy #DigitalSisterhood Wednesday!

Last night, I attended the AARP Decide.Create.Share. (DCS) event for women at LivingSocial in Washington, D.C. Decide.Create.Share. is an initiative designed to help women do three things:

  • Decide what kind of future they want for themselves.
  • Create a long-term plan that will help them address their health, financial, legal, and home issues and achieve their goals.
  • Share their long-term plan with the important people in their lives.

The initiative includes a 40 Day Pledge that offers women an opportunity to make a commitment to complete a Living Longer, Living Smarter plan for their future. It covers four critical areas of life— home and community, health, finances and wishes.

The DCS event was attended by a diverse group of women representing various ages and ethnicities. We participated in an engaging session led by Sondra Wright, a women empowerment entrepreneur, author of 40+ and Fabulous: Moving Forward Fierce, Focused and Full of Life!, and founder of 40 Plus and Fabulous, LLC (see photos at the bottom of the photo collage above). Wright shared personal stories from her own life as she introduced us to the DCS initiative and explained the benefits of each component.

As a group, we had a chance to reflect on the current state of our home, health, finances, and wishes. We also explored our future needs in these key areas. Throughout the session, Wright’s invitation to the audience for deeper sharing produced conversations that revealed lessons learned we could all gain wisdom from. She also encouraged the audience to commit to living better, healthier, stronger, and more aware lives now. As I watched her and the AARP team share DCS golden nuggets, I realized I was witnessing DCS in real-time. They made it come alive for me. They also inspired me to follow through on the DCS 40 Day Pledge I made to myself and discussed during my most recent blog update. Many thanks to the AARP DCS Campaign for hosting an amazing, informative, and energizing event!

Have you taken the 40 Day Pledge yet? If yes, how has it helped you?

If not, sign up today and get started on planning for your future!

Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

Enjoy #DigitalSisterhood Wednesday!!!!!

Best,

Ananda Leeke, Digital Sisterhood Network founder

DSN_LLL150

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Disclaimer: This blog post was written in support of Digital Sisterhood Network’s Leadership, Lifestyle and Living Well initiative and participation in AARP’s Decide. Create. Share. Initiative.

Visit Oprah.com’s AARP Caregiving Resources Web Site


Photo Credit: Oprah.com

Photo Credit: Oprah.com

Photo Credit: AARP.org

Photo Credit: AARP.org

Happy Friday!

Are you a caregiver or preparing to give care for your loved ones in the future? If so, take a few moments to visit Oprah.com’s AARP Caregiving Resources web site. Check out some of our favorite site features below.

1) INSIDE A CAREGIVER’S LIFE: The web site features three short videos that give you an inside look into the life of a fellow caregiver. Click here to watch one of our favorite videos, “Caring for Yourself and the Ones You Love.”

2) AMY GOYER’S GUIDE TO CAREGIVING: Watch caregiver and author Amy Goyer’s series of videos that provide resources and tips for caregiving.

Photo Credit: AARP.com

Photo Credit: AARP.com

Photo Credit: AARP.com

Photo Credit: AARP.com

3) REACH OUT WITH FREE SOCIAL E-CARDS: The web site offers  caregivers free social e-cards (see cards above) they can use to reach out for support let people outside their everyday support network  know how  they are feeling. Here’s how it works. Click here and choose an image that describes how you are feeling and then post it on your Facebook or Twitter page to let your network of family and friends know what’s happening with you. It’s a very easy and quick way to give an update and ask for support. Try it today and let us know what happens in the comment section below.

4) START THE CONVERSATION: The web site provides three articles that walk you through the essential first steps to becoming a successful caregiver.

5) COMPREHENSIVE CAREGIVING RESOURCES: The web site has a list of organizations and web sites that can help you identify caregiving resources that meet you and your loved ones’ needs.

 

DSN_LLL150

AARP Blogger Kitchen Cabinet #CareSupport campaign

 

Disclaimer: This blog post was written in support of Digital Sisterhood Network’s Leadership, Lifestyle and Living Well initiative and participation in AARP’s Caregiving Campaign.

DC Area Digital Sisters Attend AARP Decide.Create.Share. Event for Women & Long-Term Planning on September 17


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Happy #DigitalSisterhood Wednesday!

Do you know about AARP’s Decide.Create.Share. Initiative and the 40 Day Pledge for women and long-term planning?

AARP’s Decide. Create. Share. Initiative is designed to help women do three things: 1) Decide what kind of future they want for themselves. 2) Create a long-term plan that will help them address their health, financial, legal, and home issues and achieve their goals. 3) Share their long-term plan with the important people in their lives. The 40 Day Pledge offers you an opportunity to make a commitment to complete a Living Longer, Living Smarter plan for your future. It covers four critical areas of your life—your home and community, your health, your finances and your wishes. This summer

This year, the Digital Sisterhood Network became a blogger ambassador for AARP’s Decide.Create.Share. Kitchen Cabinet because the initiative promotes our mission of inspiring women to live well and maintain a healthy lifestyle. As a blogger ambassador, we used our digital platforms to educate and encourage women to take the 40 day Pledge. If you missed reading the blog posts click on the titles below.

Next week, Digital Sisterhood Network founder Ananda Leeke will attend AARP’s Decide.Create.Share. event for women and long-term planning on September 17 from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at Living Social in Washington, D.C. If you are in D.C., join her at the session or come to an earlier session to learn more about the program. See the details below.

 

aarpdcsinvitation

Web

Disclaimer: This blog post was written in support of Digital Sisterhood Network’s Leadership, Lifestyle and Living Well initiative and participation in AARP’s Decide. Create. Share. Initiative.

AARP Decide.Create.Share Initiative: August Check-In


AARP Decide.Create. Share Program for Women's Long-Term Caring Needs

AARP Decide.Create. Share Program for Women’s Long-Term Caring Needs

Happy Last Thursday in August!

On July 22, I wrote a blog post about my participation in AARP’s Decide. Create. Share. Initiative and 40 Day Pledge. The Initiative is designed to help women do three things:

  • Decide what kind of future they want for themselves.
  • Create a long-term plan that will help them address their health, financial, legal, and home issues and achieve their goals.
  • Share their long-term plan with the important people in their lives.

The Pledge offers women an opportunity to make a commitment to complete a Living Longer, Living Smarter plan for their future. It covers four critical areas of life— home and community, health, finances and wishes. My post outlined what I planned to do during the 40-day period which officially ends on August 31. Today’s blog post is a check-in that shares what I have I completed so far and my plans for the coming weeks and months.

prevention

My August got off to a great start due to inspiration I received from reading the “Love Your Age” issue of Prevention. I was moved into action by Anne Alexander’s Editor’s Letter, a series of lessons in the “Love Your Age!” article by Megan Othersen Gorman and Sari Harrar, and wisdom from Dr. Maya Angelou, one of my personal sheroes.

Ananda Leeke and Judy Weathers at Ulah Bistro on U Street, NW in DC

Ananda Leeke and Judy Weathers at Ulah Bistro on U Street, NW in DC

I carried their words into my  third quarter meeting with my Ameriprise financial advisor Judy Weathers at Ulah Bistro in my U Street neighborhood in Washington, D.C. (Ulah has great food, drinks, dessert, and wine). We reviewed my business revenue streams, expenses for any big ticket items in the next several months, emergency fund, investments, new investment plan, retirement savings, and current policies for disability and long-term care. Before ending the meeting, we scheduled a follow up meeting in October. Judy also gave me homework (update all of my financial information from early 2013) that is due on September 6. She agreed to be my accountability check-in person for my 40 Day Pledge homework in September, October, November, and December.

Here’s what I was able to do this month: clean out some of my financial files, submit my monthly invoices to vendors and clients on time, make a list of 3rd quarter expenses and new revenue stream sources (obtained one new client), schedule and go to three women’s wellness exam follow up appointments, and give summer clothing and shoes to charity.

This weekend, I am going to complete the online 40 Day Pledge Worksheets, finish my homework for my financial advisor Judy, file my current financial records, review my health records and file the current records in order, and create a more realistic schedule for the action items listed below. I am gonna be one busy lady this Labor Day Weekend!

1) Financial – Personal and Business Project

Personal

  • Prepare a list of all monthly expenses and account numbers for each creditor, utility providers, and mortgage company).
  • Create a list of all my usernames and passwords for bank, credit, debit, web site, and social media accounts. Share the list with close family members.
  • Obtain a safe deposit box.

Business

  • Prepare a list of upcoming expenses for the 4th quarter.
  • Prepare a list of all current revenue streams for the 4th quarter.
  • Identify additional revenue streams for the 4th quarter and map out plans to obtain them.

2) Health Project

  • Obtain my health records from my previous doctor and send them to my new doctor.
  • Schedule my eye, dental, and foot appointments in September and October.
  • Prepare a list of my vitamins, medications, medical care providers and acupuncturist’s contact information, and health/eye/dental/long-term care/disability/life insurance policy information. Share the list with close family members.

3) Home Project

  • Make several copies of my deed to my property and file in my safe deposit box and personal home files.
  • Update my home insurance plan inventory list with new equipment and the value of any personal property.
  • Create a contact list of all home service providers (plumber, heat/air conditioner, painter, and contractors).
  • Prepare a list of items and furniture I plan to purchase in the next 6 months to a year and map out the best times to purchase them.

4) Legal Project

  • Review and update my will (include statement about how to handle my social media accounts and web sites when I die) and healthcare power of attorney. Have the documents notarized. Give copies to my close family members and file a copy in the my safe deposit box.
  • Review my real estate property deed and related documents. File them away safely.

As you can see from my check-in, I am a work in progress. I am happy about the progress I have made and looking forward to taking better care of myself in the coming weeks and months.

Did you take the 40 Day Pledge? What have you been to accomplish?

DSN_LLL150

Web

Disclaimer: This blog post was written in support of Digital Sisterhood Network’s Leadership, Lifestyle and Living Well initiative and participation in AARP’s Decide. Create. Share. Initiative.

AARP Decide.Create.Share Campaign Interview with Digital Sister Sylvia Wong Lewis


Photo Credit: Sylvia Wong Lewis

Photo Credit: Sylvia Wong Lewis

Digital Sisterhood Network (DSN) recently had a chance to conduct a “Live Your Best” interview with Sylvia Wong Lewis (SWL), CEO and Founder of Narrative Network, a boutique PR business in New York City. Lewis serves as a Commissioner for the New York State Department of State and the New York Ethnic Community Examiner for Examiner.com. Her Narrative Network blog discuss art, culture, food, genealogy, gardening, lifestyle, music, and New York City neighborhoods. Her beautiful photography illustrates many of her blogs and posts on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Twitter. This year, the proud Smith College alumna received a Telly Bronze Award for creative excellence for her documentary production of “From Shanghai to Harlem,” an American migration and immigration story that portrays her mixed Chinese and Black family by exploring slavery, freedom, music, love, identity, and diversity. She also received the AVA Digital Award’s Gold Award for creativity and video editing in documentary production.

DSN’s interview features a discussion about Lewis’ participation in AARP’s Decide. Create. Share. Initiative’s 40 Day Pledge campaign. The Initiative is designed to help women do three things: 1) Decide what kind of future they want for themselves. 2) Create a long-term plan that will help them address their health, financial, legal, and home issues and achieve their goals. 3) Share their long-term plan with the important people in their lives. The 40 Day Pledge offers women an opportunity to make a commitment to complete a Living Longer, Living Smarter plan for their future. It covers four critical areas of women’s lives— home and community, health, finances, and wishes. For more information, follow AARP Decide.Create.Share. on Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter.

Photo Credit: Sylvia Lewis

Photo Credit: Sylvia Lewis

DSN: What does living your best life mean to you?

SWL: Safeguarding my mind-body-soul connections. Also, it means focusing on five elements: 1) emotional health; 2) social health and friendships; 3) physical health – exercise; 4) career – doing/discovering fulfilling creative work; and 5) financial – managing investments and generating income. These elements are connected to “My Soul-Caribbean Rules” (Ways to Live Your Best Life).

  • Be self-sufficient: Be healthy, exercise, and get fresh air and sunshine. Know how to cook rice and beans. Know how to fish, catch, and prepare a chicken. Be able to entertain yourself — play a musical instrument, sing, write poetry, tell stories, dance, or act. Keep a survival kit including a jug of water, cash, flashlight, matches etc. Be prepared for a blackout, flood, or earthquake. Don’t run out of food—it’s bad luck. Be spiritual and inspired—which means in-spirit.
  • Hone People Skills: Don’t look at or answer your cell phone during meetings or with friends. Cleanliness is next to Godliness. Be neat. Develop conversation skills, small talk, eye contact, and body language. Don’t gossip or tattle. Don’t say anything if it’s not nice. Save personal questions for later. Always be early—never late for appointments.
  • Keep Your Wits About Yourself (environment/location, sense of direction): Get the lay of the land, so you don’t get lost! Be happy and have fun. Laugh out loud. Cry. Be passionate.
  • Finances: Don’t go on welfare or be a welfare witch! Be thrifty. Do without until you can afford it. Never borrow or loan money to your relatives. If you can spare money, give it freely. Don’t hire your friends or relatives or rent to them either. Be kind. Be generous. Practice hospitality. If you can put up someone or provide a warm meal, do it.  Always have three jobs or multiple sources of income — journalist, consultant, chef, gardener, tour guide and executive assistant—are among my jobs. Always keep a money stash that no one knows about! Surround yourself with people who are smarter, more successful than you; and be with people who share the same or similar values.

DSN: How did you give yourself permission to live your best life?

SWL: When something bad happens, then we realize that we need to re-focus. I believe that happened to me at key points in my life (career changes, death of parents and a sibling, child’s illness, divorce, homelessness, domestic violence, job changes, working too many jobs, getting a raise/promotions, moving to five different cities, fame. and fortune, etc.).

At 60 plus years old, I have re-calibrated my life many times–my relationships, my health regimen, and lifestyle, how I spend my free time, and finances. But change was not easy. I was not always ready to listen or act on my inner voice’s urgings or intuition. I experienced everything–much joy and happiness and heartaches and disappointments too in my life. I resisted my inner voice in regard to safeguarding my mind, body, and soul connection for years. Then one day, I stopped! Maybe that’s the Pisces in me—capable of extremes!!!

Once I uncluttered my life, I was able to tap into my own true wisdom, talents, values, and culture. I began to reclaim my voice and find my way to living my best life—the life that everyone is destined and entitled to live. Self,care was my first priority. Several years ago, I knew that I had been neglecting myself especially emotionally, spiritually, physically, and financially. I was on speed-dial, automatic pilot and a treadmill.

Clarity came to me aboard an airplane. The flight attendant demonstrated how to put the oxygen on myself first, and then to attend to others. Then Suze Orman and Oprah segments re-played in my head: “No, don’t take your hard-earned money to buy that family member another car…Don’t allow that person to talk to you like that or mistreat you like that anymore.”

Reality checks: I realized that some of my so-called loved ones and beloved colleagues did not have my best interest at heart—only their own self-interest! I had to own up to being an enabler in some cases, causing my own problems in other cases and even sabotaging myself.

So remember, if anyone calls you selfish or tries to make you feel bad about your self-care practices, pulling yourself out of debt, getting your health checked, eating health food, dancing, singing, or chanting – DELETE them, immediately!

I went back and forth inside my head for years before making changes that I knew I should make. Actually, when I decided to change my life, my timing and circumstance were totally wrong. But, I was finally ready. Among the best things I did for myself was seek counseling about changing my life. My college roommate, Karen, who is a therapist, advised me to do just that. At first, I was resistant: “Black people don’t do therapy,” I thought to myself. But, I trusted my friend’s judgment. I lucked up and found a feminist therapist who combined grief and empowerment therapy.

I had a lot to do: manage my deceased parent’s affairs, finalize a divorce, arrange custody and visitation for my special needs child, find a new job, and a place to live. I was starting a new life all over again. It was an exciting and scary time. I made these changes and many more when I was about 40 years old. So, if you are near 40—watch out!

Almost immediately, my life became better and happier in every way possible. My new uncluttered life attracted positive people, activities, and opportunities. I started a new business, a new job, and purchased a new home. I was beginning to live my best life. I found my new husband when and where I least expected. By then, I was on my road to recovery—recovering my life back!

Today, I find happiness in very simple ways like sharing a cup of tea with a new friend, sitting in the sunshine, the aroma of freshly cut grass, hearing laughter, eating a peach, looking at art, or walking in the rain. Checking my small garden and cooking a family recipe has its own moments of joy.

So, my advice about living one’s best life has to do with safeguarding your mind, body, and soul; honoring your cultural traditions; and listening to your inner voice. If you take care of those areas, you will notice a new level of satisfaction. Your affairs will simply fall into place with ease.

DSN: What inspired you to do the AARP 40-day pledge?

SWL: I was interested in AARP’s Decide. Create. Share initiative because I wanted to see if I had all of my bases covered. Together with my husband, we completed all of the checklists. We still must work on the ”Last Wishes” item. But, we were pleased to learn that we have taken all the steps plus some, to plan our future.

DSN_LLL150

Web

Disclaimer: This blog post was written in support of Digital Sisterhood Network’s Leadership, Lifestyle and Living Well initiative and participation in AARP’s Decide. Create. Share. Initiative.

Digital Sisterhood Network Supports AARP at #BlogHer13


AARP Decide.Create. Share Program for Women's Long-Term Caring Needs

AARP Decide.Create. Share Program for Women’s Long-Term Caring Needs

Happy Digital Sisterhood Wednesday!

Digital Sisterhood Network founder Ananda Leeke joined a powerful group of blogger ambassadors Jessica Ashley, Judy Freedman, Sharon Greenthal, Chloe Jefrries, and Patricia Patton in supporting AARP during the BlogHer 9th Annual Conference at the McCormick Place in Chicago, Illinois. As an AARP blogger ambassador for the  CareSupport Campaign and Decide.Create.Share Campaign, Leeke was on double duty. She was able to work side-by-side AARP staff and share information about AARP’s Caregiving, Decide. Create. Share., and Life Reimaged Programs with BlogHer attendees in the Expo Hall. The conversations she had with attendees underscored the importance of each campaign’s value to women. Check out the photos below.

Ananda Leeke at the AARP #BlogHer Expo Booth

Ananda Leeke at the AARP #BlogHer Expo Booth

AARP and Women Online Team at Prep Meeting

AARP and Women Online Team at Prep Meeting

AARP Life Reimagined BlogHer Booth

AARP Life Reimagined BlogHer Booth

People at the AARP BlogHer Booth

People at the AARP BlogHer Booth

Ananda Leeke sitting behind the Life Reimagined comments of BlogHer attendees at AARP Expo Booth

Ananda Leeke sitting behind the Life Reimagined comments of BlogHer attendees at AARP Expo Booth

Life Reimagined comments of BlogHer attendees at AARP Expo Booth

Life Reimagined comments of BlogHer attendees at AARP Expo Booth

Life Reimagined comments of BlogHer attendees at AARP Expo Booth

Life Reimagined comments of BlogHer attendees at AARP Expo Booth

More About AARP

AARP is a nonprofit organization that helps people who are 50 and over turn their goals and dreams into real possibilities, strengthens communities, and fights for the issues that matter most to families such as healthcare, employment security,  and retirement planning.

AARP’s Decide. Create. Share. Initiative is designed to help women do three things: 1) Decide what kind of future they want for themselves. 2) Create a long-term plan that will help them address their health, financial, legal, and home issues and achieve their goals. 3) Share their long-term plan with the important people in their lives. The 40 Day Pledge offers you an opportunity to make a commitment to complete a Living Longer, Living Smarter plan for your future. It covers four critical areas of your life—your home and community, your health, your finances and your wishes.

Photo Credit: AARP.org

Photo Credit: AARP.org

If you are a caregiver or have family members, friends, or colleagues who serve as caregivers, please encourage them to visit AARP’s Caregiving Resource Center. The web site has great articles and tips that caregivers can use to support their wellness journey as they care for their loved ones. FYI – When you travel, you can now access AARP’s Caregiving Resource Center on your iPad !

Photo Credit: LifeReimagined.org

Photo Credit: LifeReimagined.org

Life Reimagined offers powerful tools, resources, and inspirational content to help you reconnect with your natural gifts and talents so you can live your best life. Life Reimagined also provides a community where you can your share goals and dreams, and have conversations with real people just like you that can result in real change. In addition, AARP established the Life Reimagined Institute which provides thought leadership and program development that guides and fuels the Life Reimagined experience. Think of it as an incubator of transformational processes, methodologies, and insights.  Through the Institute, you will have access to the world’s leading experts in personal development, aging, transitions, and reimagining life.

Thank you to the AARP team for bringing its campaigns to the BlogHer community! We heart you ladies: Alyson Curtis, Liz Bradley, Ally Funk, Patti Shea, Jen Reeves, Amy Goyer, and Carole Ricks!

Many thanks to the Women Online team Morra Aarons-Mele, Jen Vento, and Kaitlyn Dowling for giving the AARP bloggers a powerful opportunity to shine and connect with each other, AARP, and BlogHer attendees!

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AARP Blogger Kitchen Cabinet #CareSupport campaign

AARP Blogger Kitchen Cabinet #CareSupport campaign

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Disclaimer: This blog post was written in support of Digital Sisterhood Network’s Leadership, Lifestyle and Living Well initiative and participation in AARP’s Caregiving Campaign and Decide. Create. Share. Initiative.