Mom’s Final Days!

I have recently experienced the honor of a lifetime; facilitating the comfort and care of my cherished Mom, my best friend. I was fortunate to have been able to put my life on pause and spend it with her, along with the angels of Hospice, in her home, in Rhode Island, where she passed with dignity and grace. Being away from my home, business, and my life, took a back seat to holding her hand and helping to make her comfortable during her final days and “going home”. I could see the fear dissipate from her beautiful green eyes each time we reminisced or spoke of familiarities that only a mother and daughter do so well. She was frightened of the unknown and the reality of what was to come, but my loving devotion and tenacity were able to offset those fears.

Helping with the comfort and the care hopes to make the unfamiliar territory of death slightly more comfortable for everyone involved. This publication is based on research, such as that supported by the National Institute on Aging, part of the National Institutes of Health.

The physical demands of home care for the hospice patient are often strenuous. It is important that the caregiver take time for themselves, as well as to take care of themselves. They will need moments of rest and relief if they are to keep physically and emotionally able to help the patient. My Mother had wonderful private caregivers who I was able to engage so that I could get the well deserved respite.

The matriarch of our family has left behind a brilliant legacy. She was one of the most honest, loyal, non-judgmental and ethical women that I know, and to be able to say that she was my Mom fills me with an abundance of pride. I certainly can’t fill her shoes, not even one, but I can look up to and only hope to emulate her actions.

Thank you Mom for bringing me into this life so that I was able to love you at the end of your’s.

Tips to Beat Holiday Stress

We are just days away from the frenzied holiday celebrations. With a little time and some energy as well as the tips below, you will be able to enjoy this bountiful season; get the control back into your life which in turn translates to less stress.

Start early!

Budget: Make an intention and don’t over extend yourself. Avoid large interest payments by paying off your credit card bills in full.

Make a separate to-do list for each project.

Cook/bake ahead and freeze. Prepare a single item every opportunity that you have during the month of December and then freeze it.

Delegate: There is so much that needs to get done. Take the workload off of one person and have everyone pitch in.

Set time aside for yourself: Save one hour per day to remove yourself from the stresses of the holiday and nourish yourself which will ultimately increase your productivity.

Get adequate rest: Proper sleep and exercise are the best stress busters.

Focus on the present: Whether you’re baking, writing out cards, wrapping presents, traveling or taking a walk, focus on the present. Being mindful of the moment helps you reduce stress and feel more at peace.

Set manageable expectations: Stress has been described as the difference between our expectations and reality.

Don’t forget what the holidays are really about. Families being together, spirituality, gratitude, and fellowship with friends are among a few. These are certainly more important than what we sometimes focus on.


5 Personal Work-space Organization Tips

Article Written by Connor MacNeil, WAM Enterprises LLC

I hear it all the time: There’s never enough hours to get all my work done! Unfortunately, I can’t provide you with the answer to time travel, but I can offer you a few tips to help maximize your time spent actually working. Working at a start-up has left me with a list of never ending tasks, teaching me the lesson that organization is necessary if your goal is to maximize efficiency. I’m here to offer you some of my advice on this matter, so, here are my 5 Tips to Maintaining an Organized Work-space.

1. Organize before clocking out:

Everyone loves coming home to a freshly made bed, so why can’t the same apply to your work-space. Tidying up your desk before leaving work allows you to start the next morning with a full head of steam, and let’s be honest, if you’re having one of those mornings, the last thing needed is another distraction. If you’re able to keep an organized work-space it will help to maximize personal productivity from the moment you sit down for work.

2. Keep a To-Do list:

I don’t care how smart you think you are, it’s not logical to keep all your priorities organized in your head. By creating a To-Do list, it allows you to visualize the amount of work that is on your plate, keep track of important tasks and gauge your progress as you cross off completed items. Include everything on this list, from the biggest project to the smallest task; crossing them off feels good and will help keep you motivated. Update this list every day before leaving work in order to keep track of your progress and in turn this will help you reinforce tip #1.

3. Don’t eat at your desk:

Eating at your desk creates clutter, plain and simple. Think about how many objects you have on your desk. Personally I have 6 items (laptop, monitor, mouse, to-do list, cellphone, notepad), and if I were to eat at my desk, that number would almost double with the addition of sandwich, napkins, drink, silverware or chips. Although this may not seem like a big deal, maintaining a clean work-station is just another way to maintain a high level of productivity throughout the work day. Finding different snacking hot-spots allows for those much needed, stress relieving breaks from your desk that are crucial to keeping a clear head.

4. Folders on your lap top:

I’ve mentioned one of my desk items is a laptop, which also happens to be my most utilized one. As a marketer, keeping my laptop internally organized is crucial to my success. Strategically organizing documents, graphics, videos and more from multiple clients enables me to find any single file in seconds. As a result, I am a huge advocate for desktop folders. Through the use of folders, I almost funnel myself right down to the exact file that I am looking for. For example I create graphics for various clients so that I have a folder titled Clients Graphics; within that folder are folders labeled with each client that I have done graphic work for, and within each client folder are more folders labeled website images, blog images, etc. This allows me to find exactly what I’m looking for at the drop of a dime.

5. Keep up to date with emails:

Finally, the dreaded email inbox. Working at a start up requires me to wear a variety of hats, which also leaves me with a full inbox 50-75 per day. To stay on top of this and not create a backlog, I abide by two rules: delete at least 1 email every time I check my inbox (most of the time it ends up being multiple) and create folders for different clients or projects (just like my desktop). By cleaning out your inbox, it reduces the chances of accidentally missing an important client email or not being able to find an important message from your mother or boss.


5 Ways to Make House Cleaning and Organizing More Fun!

Article Written by Arco Cleaning Maintenance Company

Let’s face it, house cleaning is tough work, and not the most desirable activity. The good news is there are ways to make cleaning more fun and enjoyable! These five house cleaning tips will help you stay motivated and make your cleaning easier and faster.

Listen to Music: Listening to music while cleaning is a great way to make the experience more enjoyable. People who listen to music while running on average can run faster and for longer distance. Cleaning is a physical activity just like running or working out. Thus music provides a mental distraction from the task at hand which will make your time cleaning faster and more enjoyable.

Get the Family Involved: The more people cleaning, the faster the job gets done. When it comes to house cleaning, you can make the job faster and more fun by getting the whole family involved. Divide up tasks based on the person’s cleaning ability. For example, kids can pick toys up and help organize while Mom and Dad can vacuum and clean hard to reach places such as shelves. Getting the whole family involved will make cleaning more fun and less work.

Make it a contest: We understand it can be hard to motivate the family to help clean, especially the kids. We recommend making cleaning into a contest. For example, whoever picks up the most toys or cleans their room the best gets a prize. Making house cleaning into a contest is a great way to get more people involved and make it more fun.

Reward Yourself: If you are the only one in your house cleaning, it is important to reward yourself after a job well done. When you are done cleaning treat yourself with a favorite snack, order a new book or simply do whatever makes you happy. Rewarding yourself after you clean is a great way to stay motivated and relax when you are done.

Open the Windows: When house cleaning, open your windows and let the fresh air in. Cleaning your house can stir up dust creating a stuffy and unpleasant environment. Fresh air not only will make you feel better, it will improve the air quality in your home while you clean.

About the Author: Arco Cleaning has been providing commercial and residential cleaning services to the greater Westchester County area since 1946.


The Collision of Culture, Thanksgivukkah

thanksgivukkahThis year, for the first time in our lifetime and not for another 79,000 years, the first night of Hanukkah falls on Thanksgiving. There will be a food mash-up commemorating the staying power of the Pilgrims and the exceptional valor of the Jews. Imagine the luscious smells and mouthwatering tastes of sweet potato kugel, challah stuffing, potato lutkes with apple cranberry sauce combined with a traditional Thanksgiving menu.

Of course, the dinner of scrumptious culinary treats and lovely laid tables is not the only custom celebrated on this day. The excitement of lighting the first candle on the Menorah and the exchange of gifts brings a sparkle to this gastronomical event.

Organizational expert, Peter Walsh, suggests 10 steps to a stress free holiday.

1) Get enough sleep

2) Shop when others are not

3) Make room for new gifts by purging unwanted items

4) Set a budget

5) Prepare your children

6) Prepare as much food ahead as possible

7) Splurge on cleaning and/or other services i.e. Judie Kaplan Personal Concierge

8) Ask for help and delegate

9) Set a deadline for shopping and wrapping

10) Learn to say no to overnight guests’ demands

HAPPY THANKSGIVUKKAH to all. May your holiday be blessed and plentiful!