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Author: lcd186 Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 884271  
Subject: Re: Saving and Dining (and TV). Date: 12/11/2012 9:26 AM
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MissEdithKeeler, delicious! I am drooling reading all this and I already had a good breakfast. You are a wonderful cook and make some wonderfully varied meals.

All of these have been pretty excellent meals, and while maybe not the cheapest meals to fix at home, they are saving me a fortune compared to taking them out to dinner. It has the added bonus of leftovers, which you don't always have with restaurant meals, which is good for my mom, because with her Parkinson's its getting harder for her to cook. Plus I have some peace of mind, too, because I've noticed that mom doesn't eat very well these days, when left to her own devices (and my brother)--they were eating Subway a lot, McDonald's and a bunch of other stuff that's not great, and frankly, relatively expensive.

It came to my mind that it would be a great idea to cook with the specific intention of leftovers (fresh for next day, or frozen for later consumption) for your mother. Depending on her abilities and energy level, it might be nice to prepackage leftovers in meal-sized containers for eating as-is, or quick reheating in a microwave.

And my mind is wandering now, MissEdithKeeler, forgive me for taking your thread on a tangent.

Due to either incapacity, or weakness and fatigue, I've heard of homebound ill or elderly people rely on junk food because they only need to open the package and consume immediately. No refrigeration and immediate access (they can keep it by their bedside, or chair), and very little clean up. In other cases, they have enough energy to open canned food, or microwave convenience foods, but too little energy to follow up with clean up after eating. Sometimes they may say they aren't hungry when they really don't have the energy to prepare something to eat and clean up. Sometimes having to stand upright or walking back and forth for several minutes as they prepare meals might be too much. When we are healthy, making something as simple as a sandwich seems simple, but for someone who is frail or debilitated, making a sandwich is nearly impossible.

As you've noted with your mother, there are some who have the mobility and (still limited) resources to go out for a quick visit to a fast food restaurant (such as McDonald's, Subways), but not cheap long term, and not as nutritious (or as tasty!) as a properly prepared homecooked meal. If they have other health conditions (high blood pressure, diabetes), eating most of their food out of convenience meals can also seriously impair their health.

If anyone out there has an elderly or infirmed relative, friend, or neighbor that you are concerned about and you're not sure if they are eating adequately, or they are eating too much fast food or junk food, find out if they are able to prepare adequate meals for themselves. If your loved one is very proud, you may need to snoop for signs in their kitchen if they have been preparing meals, or able to clean up. Of course, you can offer to cook for them, but this may not be a reasonable solution for many.

Reading this reminded me about local home-delivered meals programs (best known as "Meals on Wheels" programs) for the homebound, elderly, or infirmed.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meals_on_Wheels

Years ago, I volunteered for this local program, God's Love We Deliver, that started with a hospice volunteer who discovered the need on a home visit with one of her patients:
https://www.glwd.org/about/overview.jsp
This organization was founded in 1985 to serve people living with HIV/AIDS, but now expanded to serve people with cancer and other serious illnesses. From GLWD's mission statement, "We prepare and deliver nutritious, high-quality meals to people who, because of their illness, are unable to provide or prepare meals for themselves. We also provide illness-specific nutrition education and counseling to our clients, families, care providers and other service organizations." Persons living with medical conditions may need some assistance or guidance with eating adequately.

MissEdithKeeler, sorry for going on a tangent. At the same time, I also thank you for being able to do so much for your mother. Many people lack the ability, willingness, or even basic competence to care for someone else and you have all of this and then some.

Lois Carmen D.
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