Connecting in the Land of Dementia: Creative Activities to Explore Together

Connecting in the Land of Dementia: Creative Activities to Explore Together

by Deborah Shouse


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781942094241
Publisher: Central Recovery Press, LLC
Publication date: 09/13/2016
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 817,158
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Deborah Shouse is a writer, speaker, editor, creativity catalyst, and dementia advocate. She has an MBA but uses it only in emergencies. Her writing has appeared in a variety of publications including The Washington Post, The Huffington Post, Natural Awakenings, Reader’s Digest, Newsweek, Woman’s Day, Spirituality & Health, The Chicago Tribune and Unity Magazine. Deborah has been featured in many anthologies, including more than four-dozen Chicken Soup books. She has written a number of business books, including Breaking the Ice, Nametags Plus, Communicating with Difficult People, and Marketing Yourself at Work. For years Deborah wrote a love story column for the Kansas City Star.

Deborah initially self-published her book, Love in the Land of Dementia: Finding Hope in the Caregiver’s Journey. Using the book as a catalyst, Deborah and her partner Ron raised more than $80,000 for dementia programs. Central Recovery Press has published an updated version of this book.

Deborah and Ron have orchestrated workshops and performed her dramatized stories for Alzheimer’s Associations and care partners groups in the United States, New Zealand, Nova Scotia, Puerto Rico, England, Ireland, Chile, Costa Rica, Italy, Turkey, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. They have worked with spiritual groups, hospice, healthcare professionals, activity directors, long-term care centers, social workers, and book clubs. Through sharing their message of finding creativity and hope in the dementia journey, they have connected with care partners around the world.

Table of Contents

Preface: How My Desire for Connection Guided Me through the Land of Dementia xi

Section I Creativity and Imagination Matter 1

Chapter 1 Discover the Wonders in the Dementia Jungle 3

Look beyond the Thorns 3

Sneak Previews 6

Outsmart Personal Resistance 8

Get Started 10

Chapter 2 Make the Most of This Book 11

Take a New Look at the Yellow Crayon 11

Embrace the Why, How, and Wow 14

Section II Meaningful Projects for People Living with Dementia and Their Care Partners 23

Chapter 3 Strengthen Communications through Creativity 25

Explore New Ways of Connecting 25

Join the Dementia Revolution 27

Reinvent Favorite Hobbies 32

Use Playfulness to Jump-Start Conversations 34

Say Yes to Improv 37

Spice Up Communications 40

Discover the Creativity at the End of the Rainbow 43

Chapter 4 Tune In with Music and Memory 47

Music Matters 47

Fly to the Moon with Music Therapy 49

Embrace the Duet of Music and the Brain 51

Come Alive with Personal Playlists 55

Sing Along and Find Your Voice 60

Weave In Rhythm 64

Unearth Life's Lyrics 67

Encore 72

Chapter 5 Add Imagination to Movement 73

Explore Creative Movement and Exercise 73

Ah-Ha-Ha with Laughter 74

Brighten the Brain with Movement Therapy 81

Work Wonders with Workouts 85

Partner Dancing for a Purpose 88

Chapter 6 Cook Up Memorable Moments 93

Create Meaningful Moments through Food 93

Feed Friendships by Cooking 97

Build Brain Power with Culinary Creativity 100

A Feast for the Senses 103

Nibble on a Few Extras 105

Chapter 7 Grow Together through Nature 107

Dig into Your Own Natural Resources 107

Snuggle Up with the Warm Puppy Solution 109

Connect with Chickens and Dogs and Llamas 111

Plant Tomatoes and Grow Relationships 114

Harvest Happiness through Volunteer Farming 117

Think Outside the House 120

Go Outdoors and Build Brain Health 123

Blossom with Flower Power 130

Chapter 8 Engage Imagination with Movies, Puppets, Clowns, and a Dash of Drama 133

Fan Your Imagination 133

Treat Yourself to a Reel Boost 134

Give a Hand with Puppets 138

Clown Around for Connection 141

Ignite Your Creativity 145

Chapter 9 Invite Creativity with Writing, Storytelling, and Poetry 149

Discover Your Own Personalized Poetic License 149

Prompt Imagination 150

Create Stories Together 152

Sneak Past the Facts and Connect through Poetry 159

Turn Ordinary Life into Extraordinary Poems 163

Honor Personal History 167

Celebrate Heroes through Storytelling and Scrapbooking 171

Chapter 10 Express Yourself through the Arts 175

It's Almost like Being in Love 175

Open Your Imagination by Looking at Art 178

Visit a Gallery and Draw on Memory 183

Brush Away Apathy through Painting 186

Draw One Line, Then Another 188

Bring Imagination into the Picture 193

Open Studios Invite Artistic Exploration 199

Illustrate Your Life 201

Weave In Fabric 205

Connect through Collage 208

Cut, Paste, and Converse 210

Chapter 11 Dive into Playfulness, Games, Fiddling, and Technology 213

Play On 213

Invite Playfulness 215

Dig into Delightfully Destructive Dominoes 219

Keep a Pocket Full of Memories 220

Forage in a Fiddle Box 225

Plug into Technology to Connect 228

About Deborah 233

Acknowledgments 235

About the Contributors 237

Resources 253

Bibliography 265

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"In its infinite capacity to affect both the sufferer and the caregiver, Alzheimer’s dementia is in every way the medical fraternity’s most profound challenge. The complete collapse of an individual’s sense of identity is an agonizing event that calls for not only therapeutic interventions but also creative endeavors that can buffer the devastating effects of Alzheimer’s reach. Deborah Shouse’s Connecting in the Land of Dementia is a venture into those very creative realms, with comprehensive insight into the various innovative modes ranging from laughter to music to arts. It is a caregiver’s wonderful companion to journey inside the heart of a troubled mind. Compassionate and authentic, the book is a great resource." — Shuvendu Sen, MD, Director, Medical Education, Raritan Bay, Hackensack University, Author of Why Buddha Never Had Alzheimer's: A Holistic Treatment Approach through Meditation, Yoga and the Arts

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