Honoring My Dad, My Hero: The Longest Day

By Heather Shadko My name is Heather Shadko. I grew up in the Midwest, just outside of Chicago, but I’ve been a resident of Puyallup, Wash., for 24 years. I’m a mother, wife and active member of my community. I work as a contract specialist for King County’s Department of Natural Resources and Parks, combining my passion for the environment and our community with my … Continue reading Honoring My Dad, My Hero: The Longest Day

Don and Nancy enjoying a boat ride

My Journey in Honoring Nancy: The Longest Day

Don Desonier became an Alzheimer’s Association volunteer after losing his wife, Nancy, to early-onset dementia. This year, he is participating in The Longest Day® in her honor.  A woman of grace, beauty and limitless love Don’s wife, Nancy, was a professional flute performer and teacher, having graduated from UCLA with a degree in flute performance. Little did she know that her talent and love for … Continue reading My Journey in Honoring Nancy: The Longest Day

Woman and her daughter at a doctor's appointment

Two New DPEN Initiatives Aim to Strengthen Dementia Care

By: UW Dementia Palliative Education Network (DPEN) Team Dementias are prevalent, debilitating conditions with far-reaching health and social effects. An aging U.S. population means that there will likely be a 50% increase in demand for dementia care by 2025. But large gaps exist in the US healthcare system for people living with dementia. With almost four million registered nurses — the largest part of the … Continue reading Two New DPEN Initiatives Aim to Strengthen Dementia Care

Mark Donham and his wife Chris

The True Value of Travel

By Mark Donham The following is an excerpt from Mark Donham’s chapter in The Moment Collectors: Twenty Travellers’ Tales From Around the World. It has been adapted for the purposes of the ALZWA Blog. Mark is a long-time Alzheimer’s advocate and is currently a board member for the Alzheimer’s Association Washington State Chapter. I was riding and exploring the dusty gravel roads of six countries … Continue reading The True Value of Travel

Couple walking on path with cherry trees

Daylight Saving Time and Alzheimer’s Disease

By Colleen Kienbaum, RN-BSN It’s that time of year again — the time when households all over America set their clocks forward and lose an extra hour of precious sleep during the night. For people living with or providing care to someone with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia, the time change can also be the beginning of a change in routine. Some changes that come with … Continue reading Daylight Saving Time and Alzheimer’s Disease

Male caregiver at kitchen table looking sad and stressed

Caregiver Burnout: Is Your Flame About to Fizzle?

By Wendy Nathan, BSc, CMC As we enter our third year of the COVID pandemic, it’s important to pause for a moment and acknowledge how it has stretched us all emotionally, physically, mentally and financially. Daily life is challenging enough. Toss in an ever-evolving pandemic and the landscape becomes more complex. Family caregivers, you have been hit exceptionally hard. I want to acknowledge that too. … Continue reading Caregiver Burnout: Is Your Flame About to Fizzle?

Glenn kissing Pam on the cheeck at Christmas

Things I Miss: Making Every Minute Count

By Glenn Jacobs, Puyallup, Wash. Hi there, my name is Glenn. It has been three-and-half years since my wife, Pam passed away from Alzheimer’s. We were married in 1969, so it was a long time that we had been married. We first learned about her diagnosis only three years prior to her death, so that wasn’t a very long time at all. It was a … Continue reading Things I Miss: Making Every Minute Count

Taryn Jensen on vacation with her boys

My First Valentine: There’s No Love Like a Mother’s Love

By Brady Jensen My mom’s 10-year decline with Alzheimer’s disease began when she was 55 and ended last year. I miss her more than anything and have for the last few years. On Valentine’s day last year, I was snowed in and started writing down my thoughts. My mom used to make my brothers and me foot-by-foot pink heart-shaped sugar cookies topped with a cursive-frosting … Continue reading My First Valentine: There’s No Love Like a Mother’s Love