observed by Diane » photo journal for those who enjoy vignettes of an ordinary life

Favourite Things

Since I’m not working at the moment, and because I’ve had some recent discussions relating to favourite things and recommendations, I’m adding something a bit different to these pages. From time to time, in addition to some of the book recommendations I have shared, I’m going to add an occasional post about some of my favourite things — as in material items. These “things” may be photography related but they may also fall into other categories such as “in the kitchen”, cooking, gardening, pets, natural health, or some of my favourite books. To make it easy to find some of my favourite things, I’m creating a new Category titled, “Diane’s Favourite Things” so if you click on the Category button (just above in the menu bar) you will easily find a listing of all my recent postings.

To get things started, I’m going to share some information about a book written by a writer friend, Rick Lauber. Caregiver’s Guide for Canadians.

I don’t know why this essential book is not more widely publicized. It’s a lifesaver for anyone who is caring for elderly parents or relatives. Utilizing his own personal experience, the author adeptly addresses every and any issue caregivers are faced with.

I’m amazed at all the details covered in this helpful guide. Some examples of the important information addressed include sharing caregiving duties & defining roles; caregiving from away; all manner of emotional aspects; living arrangements & other responsibilities; paperwork; things to do together or when visiting; managing the medical aspects; keeping balance in your own life; and so much more. A quick flip through the Table of Contents demonstrates just how much help resides within this book. A review never quite touches all the multiple benefits that rest between the pages of such a helpful book.

At the back of the book are pages of helpful resources, including links to organizations and government agencies. Then a final section dedicated to checklists and worksheets. He has thought of everything!

Being a caregiver can be frustrating, tiring, and sometimes confusing. “Caregiver’s Guide for Canadians” is a tool, much like a roadmap (or GPS) to help guide you through the trying times. It’s also like having your own companion letting you know you’re not alone and how to move forward as a caregiver. Do yourself or someone you know who is a caregiver, and buy this book.

I’ve already told my local librarian she needs to have a copy in our library for those in the immediate community. I hope you too will check it out if you or someone you know is caring for an adult family member.

And, sticking with books for today’s post, here is one of my favourite recommendations for great summer reading. The Secret Life of Bees

I laughed, I cried, and I felt joy reading this book. I’ve passed it on to several friends, they’ve in turn bought it as gifts for their daughters (or mothers), and I recommend it every chance I can. This is a book about mothers, daughters, loss and hope. Hope reigns triumphant in this delightfully written novel.

The protagonist, Lily, is a girl in a bad situation but her spunk and drive erase any trace of woe-is-me that might be found in other books on a similar subject. The cast of characters in this heartwarming book will delight you, enlighten you, and make you wish you could spend your days with them.

I read this book originally in 2003. At that time I read to senior citizens every week so read the entire book to them (a chapter at a time) and they were mesmerized and delighted with the book. Each week they could hardly wait for the next instalment to be read. Read it to someone you care about.

If I had to summarize this book in two words, I’d say it is both heartwarming and uplifting. Enjoy! (btw, it’s a great gift book for any mother or daughter). Or browse around all Literary Books

PS: I still read books the old fashioned way but I just may splurge one of these days for a Kindle 3G, + Wi-Fi, Ink Pearl Technology— Many people, even of my age, are finding these hand held readers quite nice to use either as an alternative or a complement to real paper books. What about you? How do you read your books?

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cicero - June 6, 2011 - 5:20 pm

I have read “The Secret Life of Bees” back when it first came out and enjoyed it.

I still like to read my books in book form. I don’t have a reading device. Enough screen time already.

Rick Lauber - June 7, 2011 - 8:09 am

This is high praise to be ranked as a “favourite thing” … I extend my grateful thanks. I am pleased to hear that you liked my book!

Rick Lauber

Candace - June 9, 2011 - 8:44 pm

I loved The Secret Life of Bees, too. A magical book. I got a Kindle about a year ago and, I really don’t know why, but I totally love reading it. I enjoy having so many books on it to choose from even though I seem to be incapable of having more than one book going at once. I understand what people say about the tactile sensation of a real book and I like that, too, but having a Kindle, Nook, whatever, doesn’t mean you can never read a virtual book again. I just really like it…but don’t know why.

Kelly @ JAX does design - June 28, 2011 - 9:29 am

Diane, I’ve missed you! Hope you’re doing OK.

Wish I’d known about Caregiver’s Guide for Canadians before – I’m sure it would have been helpful when we were dealing with my grandma living in a nursing home after she had a stroke.

I just started reading The Help this past weekend. I’m only about 50 pages in, but I’m really enjoying it so far. You’ve got me intrigued with The Secret Life of Bees – maybe I’ll read that one next 🙂

I’m divided between reading on my iPad and reading real books & magazines. I have a few magazine subscriptions with Zinio, but I’m still having a hard time adjusting to online mags. I much prefer the real thing. And I don’t think I could read a book on my iPad – there’s too much glare off the screen when I use it outside, and I do most of my summer reading outside at the cottage.