Laguna Honda Hospital Resident

Laguna Honda Hospital Resident

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

SCF's Health Care Collaborations

---''Good, competent, communication will save lives.'' That is the ending for the video. I have never seen this YouTube. The call lights, themselves, are much like the one's that we have at LHH.

Saturday, December 15, 2012


---WANTED - Computer Coaches that are able to assist residents in a one-on-one quiet setting…finding things that the resident enjoys on the computer.

----CLUB MOTTO - ‘’Give us an opportunity to make you HAPPY by exploring things that you ENJOY…on the computer. Our OBJECTIVE is your happiness and to make you an EXPLORER according to your ability’’

---BASED on QUOTE by BILL GATES - ‘’Computers are the most empowering tool ever invented. It is a tool for communication, a tool for creativity and it can be shaped by the user’’

---SUCCESSES - 1] For woman…found pictures of daughter and grandchildren on FACEBOOK, 2] showed Spanish resident SKYPE that he plans to share finding family members in different countries, 3] found and sang songs with resident on computer given him by family members. He has memory challenges and couldn’t access music himself. Memory good due to familiarity with words to songs. Many, many more…

Each resident has a point-of-entry…it just must be found and explored.

BETHANY SCHWARZ QUOTE (Head Computer Coach) - ‘’If the residents receive the correct impetus to continue…they will’’

Resident will be provided with refurbished laptop computer from Community Living Campaign for session.

---This advertisement is going to appear on the volunteer kiosk. If anyone knows of anyone who knows his way around the computer and is interested in this type of volunteerism, please pass on the information. The amount of time that someone is able to give to this project is VERY negotiable. As in losing weight I feel that ''slow is better.'' We hope to grow the program in a way that takes root in someway. Please have interested parties contact the Volunteer Office as they are handling what officially must be done. Telephone number is (415 - 759 - 3333.) Ask for Jan or Cherrylyn.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

TEDxSF - Mel Robbins - F--- YOU - How To Stop Screwing Yourself Over

. ---I think that you will like this talk. I'll bet it is different than you think.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

''Pennies From Heaven''

---Here is song from The Laguna Honda Volunteer Holiday Show in 2005.
Some may remember this.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Motivating Video Attitude is Altitude - Nick Vujicic

. ---Nick went from a life without limbs to a life without limits. Well worth a listen!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Aimee Mullins: The opportunity of adversity

. ---''It's NOT the STRONGEST...NOR the SMARTEST...It's the MOST ADAPTIVE...that DOES BETTER!'' She is an amputee (Her Legs)

Saturday, November 17, 2012

To the NURSES (and everyone) at Laguna Honda!

---I would like to dedicate this song by the Beatles to ALL the nurses at Laguna Honda. I know that this song was written by John Lennon about a relationship to a girl he may or may not have been involved with. He may have found it applicable to that situation. But, I think it applies very strongly to myself and many others at Laguna Honda, also.
---I was very self-reliant most of my life and was very able to fend for myself. The bad times were the bad times, but I seemed to survive them alright. The stroke hit me in 2002...and I had NO idea what to do. I was immediately plugged into the system and ended up at Laguna Honda.
---People have been very good to me here. I love them ALL and I really think I mean that. They have helped many times in so many ways. The song fits in, in so many ways, also. I didn't think too much about what people did who couldn't do the fundamental things that I used to take for granted. Well, I learned, in spades. They get - HELP!
---The version of the song had expired. I, finally, added a different version in its place.  I think that it serves the purpose.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Buena Bulldogs Class of '72

---Everyone seems to be getting in on the FUN! Almost my year. Thanks, Eileen.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

The Science of Happiness Part 1 Ken Keyes

---I first became aware of Ken Keyes back in the 1970's when I was living in Worcester, MA. It was when I had the big change in my life that I speak of on occasion. I read the Handbook and actually have given it as a gift many times in my life. This is ALL back in the day when I was still a Jesuit Candidate. I highly recommend this book and hope that you find it as one of the important books of our times...and any time, as I did - ''Always Us Living Love.''

The Science of Happiness Part 2 Ken Keyes

The Science of Happiness Part 3 Ken Keyes

Friday, October 12, 2012

How To Grow The Economy!! - Joe Biden

NOT from the TOP-DOWN,
but from the MIDDLE-OUT

---The point made by Joe Biden at the end of the vice-presidential debate last night was the same point I have been making ad nauseum. Happiness at Laguna Honda WILL NOT necessarily begin and end with the staff being happy. The real caring individuals will understand that the happiness of the hospital depends on the residents being happy and comes from the middle-out. Biden mentions ''leveling the playing field.''

---What will make this hospital more happy is the resident being happy and the affect it will have on the care partners. ''A Happy Staff MAY or MAY NOT Translate or Trickle Down Into A Happy Resident.'' I'm saying that, ''truly happy residents will make the whole idea of being a staffer at LHH so much, more enjoyable and will make for a happier hospital.'' BUT, the residents need to feel that the staff is on their side and not just phoning it in. It may take awhile to get into the good graces of the residents. Proving yourself as trustworthy is a good place to start. BUT, then you will have a very loyal friend in someone who is, probably, more ready for friendship than you are.

---Your point was well taken - Joe! Take turtlle-like babysteps if you need to. Make small, positive changes to see how correct this ALL is

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Why I think resident/patient happiness is important

JCC Meeting
---There was another JCC Meeting today. They mentioned that the staff is beginning a ‘’Wellness Group’’ to address the fact that many staff members are calling in sick or that many are being hurt on the job. The staff hopes to cut down on having that occur. The expression ‘’a happy staff makes for a happy resident.’’

---I’d like to add my two cents into the mix. Is this going to be the piece that is needed. Somehow it is felt that when the staff is happier it will somehow result in a happier resident. I would like to go on record that I would say that this may happen, but if it goes the way of all else - it won’t trickle down.

---I think that the residents will be happy when someone finally hears them and takes them seriously. Fulfilling all their preferences in a TIMELY manner, within reason, will go a long way into resident happiness. Befriending the resident in a way that doesn’t seem phony. Relating to them as human beings that is befitting of the situation. Knowing them as they need to be known. (Many have trouble with authority figures in their life.)

---I’d like to say that this seems to rehash the present presidential difference that we see. The republican plan that caters to the rich which would be the staff in this case – hoping that by increasing their wealth [happiness and freedom from malady] will translate to create jobs that put people back to work stimulating the economy and getting the USA back to where its ENTITLED to be. The democratic plan is slow by comparison but pays some dues along the way where we can get better over time and learn how not to build the stumbling boxes back into this NEW system we are creating. This new system is NOT a replica of the old system that we find breaking down, but a truly new system that incorporates new things that helps both sides – resident/staff to grow equally and together.

---Right now we are much like the rabbit and the turtle. The quick fix minded [republican/staff mindset] lose patience with the slow and steady turtle mindset [who ends up winning the race,] because he is too slow for the rabbits taste. Bill Clinton made this point very clear in his speech. The republicans handover a messed up economy to the democrats and complain that it’s not fixed in two weeks. So we have the rabbits [staff/republicans] come up with many ideas that have ALL the dynamics of the race built right in. The rabbit has terrible follow through because his whole life is about quick fixes and the like.

---It is like losing weight – those who lose it fast will probably gain it all back because there was very little learned and embodied in the process. Those who lose the weight and reeducate themselves along the way have a new intelligent way of approaching the subject. These folks have a chance to keep the weight off.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012





3] RESIDENTS are NOT RIGHT - all the time. STAFF are NOT RIGHT - all the time. RESIDENT and STAFF have to PARTNER UP and DEVELOP a STRATEGY to meet the ‘’NEEDS’’ and ‘’PREFERENCES’’ of the RESIDENT




Friday, September 28, 2012


---For the new ''assistants'' and a refresher for ALL who may benefit. It is the most important relationship at LHH or any hospital. It is the relationship that the resident/patient has with his care partner of the moment. Let's make the relationships work.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

BEN FRANKLIN...Prolific!


Saturday, September 8, 2012

Candy Chang: Before I die I want to...

. ---This is a very taboo subject for most, but, probably, the most fruitful that one can undertake. I do feel that folks are realizing that pretending just isn't working this may not be so bad. Candy Chang is very correct when she says that when one faces death in some form that suddenly a new improved, quality of living takes place. . ---This, of course applies to residents as well as to staff. It is true that residents as a whole possess more inherent knowledge, in this area, than staff people, in general, just by the conditions that we see. But, also, the setting that we find ourselves in doesn't usually lend to one person striking on his own and make a big dent in anything. . ---Imagine, if you would...a suggestion box situation that staff, volunteers, visitors and residents could use COMPLETELY ANONYMOUSLY, if they choose, and write down things that they would like to accomplish before they die. It wouldn't have be realistic or anything like that, but only a way to express whatever they wish. I think that there would be a very therapeutic situation happening for many folks.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Susan Cain On Strombo: Full Interview

---More on the introvert/extrovert in our culture.

Thursday, August 30, 2012



---I’m sure that you all heard about the grass ALWAYS being greener in the other fellow’s yard. I heard a new version of that with same beginning, but with this addition - ‘’try watering your own grass and see how green IT WILL GET.’’
---We can see that if we maximize what we do have it may rival that which you see in someone else’s possession. You would have to reassess the situation…at the very least. The truth that I do see is that we are usually quick to compare what we have, with our neighbor. But, with the addition it shows how we are quick to judge ourselves WITHOUT having ALL the evidence.
---We usually do not know what our potential is because we can be so busy sticking our nose into the affairs of others. It is NOT usually about doing our best work, but being sure that we are ‘’keeping up with the Joneses.’’
---At a time of global warming and the drought situation, we can be glad that the saying isn’t just about lawns of grass. It really is about maximizing who we are. AND…what better way to start than to accept yourself ‘’as you are.’’ Accepting yourself…faults and all…is far better than waiting until you feel acceptable + perfect. Because, as I’m sure you know…you MAY wait forever. Take Care.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Susan Cain: The power of introverts: TED TALKS: documentary,lecture,talk

---An important perspective for those of us who work better alone. There seems to be a push of trying to make everyone a joiner or one who belongs. When there are many in our society who don't enjoy being in the midst of something all of the time. I, myself, do enjoy being alone a lot. I can relate to the picture painted by Susan Cain of someone who enjoys being alone and the realm that my imagination plays. I can be very introverted, but like to have activity to relate to. I enjoy having a choice of both, introversion and extroversion.

---One final thought on the subject...for now. It is the situation of having or NOT having a roommate. I, without-a-doubt, like a situation that has as much alone-ness as possible. Being in a copacetic environment is the first priority that I would make, over anything else. Luckily, things at present are okay, but it is frightening when I see some of the matches that do exist. I think that the design of the new hospital failed in that regard, also. One can easily see that privacy was NOT a priority when the new LHH was built. If anybody really does think that ALL is fine...then I challenge them to move in and see if it easy to flourish in the present environment. I know that it doesn't sound like it, but I love this place...I just think we could do so much better with an attitude upgrade. I include myself in that...most times. (If anyone seriously wants to discuss things...please feel free to approach me about it.)

Monday, August 27, 2012

James Hollis PhD Finding Your Own Path on LIVING SMART with Patricia Gras

---The very beginning is out of sync with itself, but corrects that very soon. I'm sure that the topic is one that we can easily relate to...NOT just in ourselves, but in folks that we know or residents in our charge.

---At the end he speaks of having many questions of life and not just a bunch of answers. As it says, ''life is NOT a problem to be solved, but more of a mystery to be lived.''

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Brené Brown: Listening to shame

---Another wonderful talk by Dr. Brene Brown. She makes a distinction between guilt and shame. She, also, talks of how shame is different for men and for women. Well worth listening to. A very different way of seeing a resident, a loved-one or yourself...than you possibly have seen before. Kudos for being courageous enough to listen.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

TEDxKC - Brené Brown - The Price of Invulnerability

---A great talk. She speaks of how vulnerability gives meaning to your life. It is the birth place of all the good things. As a culture she talks of how we are doing the opposite and numbing.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Spent a few days at SFGH

Was like aluminum foil and cavities or
why I yelled + screamed a lot at SFGH
---My most recent General Hospital stay, I returned to LHH, yesterday, can be explained in this way: I had a mouthful of cavities and the General Hospital staff that I dealt with each had a ball of aluminum foil. Some gave me none. Some me as much as they could. Some situations were really fabulous and some needed tweaking.
---I went over there in pain. When I maintained a certain position, the pain was less prevalent. Only I could determine how to move, which was very little, to keep the pain away. If I moved quickly I felt attacked by the pain. It was like having cavities, but keeping everything asleep so as to not stimulate the cavities to begin hurting. All was well…until something occurred to stimulate the cavities. That something was usually someone who had as his intention - to help me. There were plenty of them. Remember that this is a hospital that I’m talking about.
---They drew blood many times, took (painful) x-rays a few times - only painful because of the contorted ways I had to position myself to get them. They used the sliding board instead of believing me about how I can transfer if you stop attacking me with the sliding board. And…for good measure restraining movement of my right arm and hands using a tight grip (this is claustrophobic as well as painful. It brings me to a panic situation…almost immediately.)
---I usually do pretty well in circumstances that I am in. I am a pretty smart guy when given half-a-chance. I have adjusted pretty well to the hospital in which I live. I have adjusted pretty well to my compromised physical condition(s) and try not to rain on other’s parades when they are in progress.
---Pain comes, usually at those times something surprises me that I didn’t anticipate. If I’m told what is happening and am kept abreast of the situation and in that way allowed to be part of it, I can usually muster up enough of, whatever is necessary, to get through it.

This Makes Me Wonder: I do fine if left to my own devices and can do many things, but they might not be the same way that most people do them. The big difference between a day at LHH and day spent at SFGH recently is this: They communicate with me at LHH and keep me in the loop of what they are doing or going to do to me. At SFGH many treated me as if I knew nothing and I was just fanaticizing when I told them that there were some things that they shouldn’t do because of pain and that there are some things that I can do for myself.

---It takes time to develope relationships. Staff and Resident should be assessed where they stand numerically. That would give some kind of testimony to there ability to communicate. With, myself, it doesn't take very long to assess the possibilty of relationship with the person in question. Over time the situation seems to improve. It is first encounters with closed-minded folks, that are most difficult.
---Many times they got angry with me when their expert came up with a plan to reduce the pain for me…and it didn’t work. Even if I know exactly how I would handle the situation…my suggestion is the one NOT chosen. Being flat on a gurney or bed or anywhere…is a thing I can’t do. And…lastly, they're were the ones who tell you that they are here to help, NOT hurt you…and end up hurting you, anyway.

---Truly, all would be prevented if the ''offenders'' would learn to LISTEN better and believe more the one that they are treating.

SUMMARY: I went to the hospital in pain. I couldn’t breathe properly. I had pain when I would NOT breathe shallowly. The objective was to relieve the pain…and it’s gone. I think that we would have saved added pain time if they had discussed each procedure with me before diving right in without my even knowing who they are. AND THEY SEEM TO ALWAYS GRAB MY RIGHTARM. (I have a movement disorder where my rightarm and fingers have been affected. This is all due to the stroke that I had in 2002.) Most of the people there were nice to me, but there were times when my concerns were NOT considered due to time constraints or worse. The worst would be a negative attitude toward the patients or the situation that they are in. They should work on that in there own time…but, work on that, please. Maybe the answer is to do something else. It may just be a bad fit to be in this field.
---This is a tough one I know. Please learn to listen to the patient/resident. Contrary to some belief system somewhere, they don’t lie about everything all the time. To the defense of staff members…you would be held libel if your charge fell NO MATTER what he may have told you. That is a hard one that needs real discussion.
---There are NO hard and fast rules that cover everything all-the-time. DISCUSSION and DIALOGUE with each client and don’t assume much either way. ALLOW him to participate in the procedure by letting him know what you’re doing. HE MAY BE ABLE TO HELP.
---Every encounter should have a beginning, middle and ending. The patient should be told that you are through for now if you are. Don’t assume that he should know that. Some things that are done are completely foreign to us. With, myself, I can’t see what you’re doing all-the-time so just by getting up tells me nothing other than you’ve stopped doing what you were doing for some reason.
If some of these things are done I know it will be better for me and some others. I won’t be chewing on as much aluminum foil and there shouldn’t be the extra pain that seems avoidable. All I’m really saying is - let’s work together and listen to each other. I had some great encounters despite the ‘’less than good ones’’ during my stay in SFGH. And, each wonderful time involved dialoging and working together. The days of the doctor working on un-savvy, knocked-out clients isn’t always every case. We have to find a new normal here, also. Maybe we should find a new normal in the attitude towards the underserved population than what is used, too. It is not just me…there are too many who fit in this mold. I believe that we would find it with dialogue. Take Care.

If it sounds like I'm only griping...I apologize. I had a tough time.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Vivian Imperiale to SFBOS:'One unintentional bruise, does not an unfit o...

---Technically, Vivian I., is my immediate boss. This piece is from a 2 minute public comment that she gave on an issue that is on the minds and hearts of the board of supervisors at present. When Vivian feels strongly about an issue she goes into action. I hope that Ross M., realizes how extremely fortunate he is to have Vivian on his side.

---Vivian runs the PREP program at LHH of which I am a part. She edits the newsletter (The INSIDER) that I write for and runs the General Store where I work. The Residents' in the PREP program respond very positively to Vivian. She is set to retire at the beginning of the New Year. We all wish her well with whatever endeavors she pursues. I have a feeling that her plans don't involve her becoming a couch potato. KUDOS Vivian.

Sunday, July 29, 2012


---Brene Brown speaks to many of the things that are lacking in many people that we deal with daily...whether they be on the staff or residents/patients.

---Her use of certain expessions and concepts places a bridge between this website and another of my websites self-esteem and self-acceptance.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Sir Ken Robinson - Educating the Heart and Mind

---You may have heard much of this video before...especially those of you who have listened to the ones that I have posted. But, the last 20 minutes are very, very good and new to many of us. I highly recommend that you listen to the last 20 mins., or so if you cannot spend the whole 50 minutes. I really enjoyed this lecture.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

TWO NEGATIVES MAKE A POSITIVE - When Multiplied Together

minus × minustwo negatives make a positive:plus(-3) × (-2) = 6
Two Negatives Make a Positive

---We a have a old mathematical adage that I’m sure that most of us have heard. It is where two negatives that are multiplied together…form a positive. This works in the field of human behavior, also. (Multiplies is essential. A neg. + a neg. yields a neg. PLUS is an adding together. MULTIPLIED gives the necessary bonding or interacting that yields a positive experience.)

---Examples make things easier to see. If we have negative on one-side say of a ‘’lonely.’’ And We have a negative of a ‘’lonely’’ on the other side…all we really have to do is to combine the two lonely’s together to form a positive of NOT-lonely. (They eventually interact...hopefully. Otherwise we have an addition situation)

---A match will NOT necessarily happen by throwing any two people together…immediately. But, over time…humans have a way of bridging the gap unless the two just can’t relate at all. Eventually, we usually find a softening on both sides.

---All we have written comes into play, here. People and circumstances have a way of revealing us to ourselves. A self-knowledge grows and the lonely’s bond or interact in someway and the negatives placed together, now, becomes a positive. If we find the correct match for each lonely he will grow in self-awareness and self-knowledge and will NO longer be a lonely. It MAY take some work and some time…but, where you once had a lonely we find that he has transformed and vanished from the scene as being a lonely. He has, now, become a positive cog in the wheel-of-life. He, now, feels positive at every turn.
I am not sure that somehow an exact formula can come from this. When one deals with human behavior there may exists unknown variables of all sorts. But, I think that in a general way - you get the gist of it.

ADDING lonely folks together will generally yield a bunch of lonely folks.
MULTIPLYING or INTERACTING lonely folks together generally will yield a bonding result that goes against loneliness.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012


.---I spoke and demonstrated my blogs at the Summit...though I am not in the video. Through affiliation with Marie Jobling and the Community Living Campaign we have a few refurbished laptop computers that are available to residents of Laguna Honda Hospital, ONLY. The resident must fit the criteria to qualify. We are trying to establish a connection with the time bank...where one ''buys'' and ''pays'' for a laptop by sharing his/her skill in an area that he is profiscient. Each hour ''served'' brings a resident a unit closer to owning his own computer. There are 24 hours or units of service to buy a laptop at present.

The price we pay for loneliness - CLICK
---The link pertains to our look at loneliness and it being more of a problem than was thought originally. The computer is a great and easy answer to the terrible bouts that many fight with loneliness. Remember that the computer can be your friend or a frightening piece of technology. It really depends on YOU. Get someone to help you make friends with it. It is easier than you might think and well-worth the effort. You may find some kind of answer that is good for you.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

As - Stevie Wonder

---This is the antidote in case anyone was feeling down from the other. Down and depressed. This talks
about eternal love. A powerful love that just explodes from within. The kind of love that makes me realize that love is understood by the singer. The kind of love that leaves little doubt that Stevie Wonder understood the eternality of love when he was singing the song. This was one of the reasons that I had spent three years with the Jesuits as a candidate for their novitiate...back in the late 70's. I would say that this is one of the best expressions of love that I have ever heard.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Make LHH More Creative

Make LHH More Creative,
Playful and Fun!

---I am laboring under the idea that if you increase the creativeness of the individual…you are making him more capable in all aspects. This, by NO means is a new concept. It is one that seems to be growing as we speak, however.

---We see in this that as folks become more creative they are becoming more buoyant at the same time. They feel better about things and the focus is not on themselves and their maladies so much…but on what is being created and the process itself. Better begets better!

---Our job in all of this seems to be one of getting folks interested in something that changes focus for them. Even closer than that would be to get them to realize that creativity is a worthwhile investment and how it impacts your life. It is healthy self-expression.

---If we want some improvement, creativity seems to work. Of course, the more creative the better. We have to be sure their negatives aren’t reinforced as soon as they leave the gate. Be supportive in a healthy way and don’t patronize or be phony with your response to what they do. Know that it is an important thing that they do what they are doing. Remember that it is far better to be expressive and creative than to be all negative about life and living. Encourage don’t discourage. Keep it real and be realistic.  Be Well.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Study on loneliness and how lethal it can be - UCSF
---A study on the ill effects of loneliness. They even speak of how lethal it can be. One of the clicks will bring you to an article in the San Francisco Chronicle. It was part of the newsletter from the Eden Alternative.
---May resemble someone we know or a recent news story about ''bullying.'' This film was made in the seventies. It seems tame compared to what we may see and hear, nowadays...but, poignant nonetheless. (About 20 mins)

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Eight Days a Week - The GUMBO BOYZ

---If not held to close scrutiny, THE GUMBO BOYZ...did okay. We played at the On Lok facility last Friday. ''Eight Days A Week'' is the song we use to get warmed up. It was smoother sailing as we went.

---The formation of the GB situation goes to Cho T., (guitar player,) in the middle. We got together to fulfill a need at Laguna Honda and have, now, gone beyond the walls of our own community to share with others at another facility located in the larger community.

---It has been said at LHH - ''What the GUMBO BOYZ may lack in talent, they make up in enthusiasm.'' The people there had many Laguna Honda questions that could be fielded and asked only by older folks in a similar but different setting. Seniors talking and sharing with seniors from different facilities. Sounds like another group setting that would reap benefits.

---We were, also, thanked for bringing a spirit of fun and enjoyment to their Friday afternoon. It is that statement that rates the day a SUCCESS (in capital letters) in my book. A big Thank You, to Cho T., and others, for making this day possible.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Community Living Campaign

---Here is a video that David R. and myself were in. The theme is one where we attempt to debunk the stigma that computers are something to be afraid of. Through the Community Living Campaign, we are trying to bring computers to older people and people that have some pre-conceived idea that computers are not for them.
---Note to self - SLOWLY, CLEARLY and DISTINCTLY.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Dr. Curtis and the shoes!

---Dr. Sweet speaks of a doctor who suddenly realized that what kept one of his patients from discharge, was awaiting medicaid approval for a pair of shoes. The doctor figured that three months of waiting for approval was too long and went to a department store and bought shoes for the patient. The patient was now ready for discharge. Dr. Sweet then uses a quote from a speech from a Dr. Peabody in 1929...who said, ‘’the secret of the care of a patient is in caring for the patient.’’
---She goes on to speak of the good, better and best - doctor. (Do not forgot that mine is a patient’s perspective.)
---The three as I see it - the good doctor or staffer would be the staff member who actually listens to what you are saying and attempts to act accordingly. The better staffer is the staff member who hears what you are saying and is more in tune with what to do, but usually finds that his/her job will be in jeopardy if he continues on the path he is on. I say this because a problem usually comes up and somewhere along the line the rules have been interpreted in a way where his or somebody’s butt would be on the line, if it were interpreted differently…and usually in the patients favor. He usually drops your case at this point with sincere wishes that ALL turns out in the patients favor and with his hope that you understand his position. He simply lacks the clout that is necessary to continue. His thinking is more like ''why make waves?'' The unfortunate part of this is that most agree with what you are asking than what they are adhering to. The conventional wisdom (or ignorance) keeps an old and outdated policy and it keeps a more correct way of addressing a situation from happening.
---The best staffer sees and hears clearly what is going down with you. He/she sees that a change is inevitable. He tosses caution to the wind and - like nike - just does it. This usually works out BEST for ALL concerned. It makes things happen.
---The quote by Dr. Peabody really is true, from my perspective. ‘’The secret of the care for a patient is really in the knowing what that individual is saying and directly addressing it.’’ If that was happening on a more constant basis, I think we would see more patients actually rehabbing and be more ready to take that next step. If the staff member uses good judgment and knows what he is doing...he can maneuver obstacles easily. It is the ''unsure'' that cause most cases.

There is a healing power that is conveyed when someone understands you and let’s you know that they get what you are talking about…and, then takes it seriously.

Dr. Curtis and the shoes

Friday, May 18, 2012

Dr. Victoria Sweet Washington DC 88.5 Interview

---More interviews from Dr. Sweet. She speaks for the second time about how pre-modern medicine was from the viewpoint of man as a plant being changed to a more modern look of man as a machine in the industrial age. As a plant, man was able heal himself, but changed to a more needing to be fixed mode as a machine.

---Dr. Sweet seems to think that each has its place and a slow-medicine should be reintroduced where it is necessary. There exists a time and a place for both.

---To go further with this thinking maybe this very confusion is the exact problem that causes the 3 plagues that Dr. Bill Thomas speaks about with the EDEN Alternative. They may have taken the organic out and designed many of our Nursing Homes from an industrialized pov putting too much emphasis on man as a machine when he is a bit of a combination. They don't have the recipe correct. Sounds right. I'll develope this more at another time.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

‘God’s Hotel’ By Dr. Victoria Sweet « Alice@97.3

‘God’s Hotel’ By Dr. Victoria Sweet « Alice@97.3

---A book about Laguna Honda Hospital that was written by my former doctor. I am working on reading the book but find it difficult due to my eyesight and movement disorder. Different people are reading it to me and I find we are discussing it as we are going along...but, this does become a slow process. Anyway, enjoy the radio podcast and formulate your own thoughts and add your opinion to the fray, if you feel so led.

---The quote by Florence Nightingale at the end of the interview says that it is important that everyone weigh in and declares that there is value to hearing the opinion of the different factions on the whole health care issue. There exists a very good chance that you or someone you know will be affected by this in someway.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

FEAR of BEING WRONG! - (text)

---In a case like we have at LHH, we see fear rear its ugly head in the form - thinking against the status quo of things and going against conventional thought and wisdom…has a certain amount of backlash to it. If one is NOT reading the signs and sees that a NEW thinking is needed on an old problem…then one is NOT quite READY to go with the new way of thinking, because, after all, THE OLD WAY IS PAYING THE BILLS.
---There is a risk involved, I will have to admit. But, it does come down to facing a reality that is inevitable. Someday, somehow…yourself or a loved one will need to be taken care of and you will want the best situation that is possible for yourself or this individual. You will then face the reality of how your present day actions & input could or could have benefited the situation that you will inevitably face.
---If you really believe that all is well and find everybody doing their best, and see NO change is necessary, then I will leave you alone to go on your merry way if you choose. If you don’t add your two-cents and it is a vital two-cents that you have, suddenly you may find yourself fighting an uphill battle while not being at all prepared.
---My suggestion would be to continue until you are convinced that a change is needed. Even if you find yourself questioning any of it, at least it shows you have a concern or interest. If you have any question(s) at all, find the truth of the matter and see which side of the issue that you fall. Even if YOU find that it is YOU that needs changing, then just start treating folks better. Nobody needs to do much more.

Be sure that your priorities are straight. When seen is easy to see that many residents were judged by the wrong schema.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

The HAMMER LECTURES - Whole Thing!

---Here is the whole lecture. I enjoyed this very much. I hope that you are still seeing what is really needed at make the hospital a place of excellence. I believe that rehabilitating folks has much to do with folks reaching their full potential. I realize that doing this isn't totally our responsibility, but it falls on us in the fact that each must pull his own weight and do his part. I feel that if we do just one extra thing each day to improve the esteem of one person from whatever method we decide upon, people would improve. We must not lose our stamina and continue this despite maybe losing faith at times. We must learn to truly appreciate what we have and NOT be so concerned about missing out on something or other. It is a great opportunity if you wish to take it.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Dr. Victoria Sweet

Click Here!
---Dr. Sweet was my doctor on D3 for awhile. We hit it off very well. She has invited me to one of her book launching party's. I'm very honored to be going. I heard her being interviewed on KQED-FM this morning. It is funny how she mentioned a nun from the 12th century, Hildegard of Bingen, who was a healer...talking of getting people back to their natural state of healing. She felt that people, like plants, have an innate ability to heal themselves. She called this state greening.
KQED-FM Michael Krasny

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Teachers Are Gardeners

---This was filmed for a Master's Degree Program. It fits in with Sir Ken's and Dr. Bill's metaphor of teaching and gardening. It brings to mind the Jerzy Kozinski book called Being There, Peter Sellers was Chance the Gardener in the movie. He compared life to a garden...and was considered a genius in the process.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Divergent Thinking

---A very poignant talk. In my experience at the hospital, we ALL [residents/staff] seem very good at Catastrophizing. We think of the worst possible outcome and go with that. It often times comes true and justifies a certain complacency that creates the mindset - they are out to get me, no one cares what I think and/or they feel that their job will be in jeopardy if they speakout - even when it is known that what they are supporting is wrong,  This holds true for most of us when we realize how willing we are to believe most of the gossip and rumor that we hear. We are so quick to tear someone or something down when support is needed.

---We ALL must realize that the ''catastrophized'' answer may exist, but going with it as a foregone conclusion makes it a self-fulfilling prophecy. Think a bit longer and find a better answer or solution and GO WITH THAT, INSTEAD. Work toward making THIS be the truer answer to the question. Don't be so quick to jump on the bandwagon of someones or somethings possible negative outcome and champion it as true, even before it is. Think positively about people and places instead of immediately thinking something will go wrong - always.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Sir Ken Robinson - Defining Creativity

---Dr. Robinson speaks on creativity as being ''putting imagination to work..'' He speaks on being relevant, also. ''You wouldn't compare a 5 year old's drawing to the Sistene Chapel.''

----I, personally, see a mix of what Dr. Bill Thomas says and what Sir Ken Robinson saye as being a recipe to work towards a cure to the prominent ills of our society. I firmly believe that we have to educate folks properly to NOT take everything so personally where they feel a need to save face nearly all-the-time. This is all geared to make stronger individuals that automatically improve the process of getting older...instead of somehow being a third wheel to our society.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Ken Robinson Hammer Lecture - Clip 1

---I think that many patients at the hospital are victims of a faulty educational system and have much more ability than they have been given credit. I think we have to begin seeing others for what they may have. Many of the residents have never been given half-a-chance in my estimation. That, probably, would apply to many of the line staff, also.

---I really enjoy Sir Ken Robinson. I hope that you find his pov worthwhile. I hope you see how this all fits with a new way of thinking of the situation at the hospital..

Thursday, April 12, 2012

The Green House Nursing Home Alternative

---Some very good things are said in this video. See how important that creativity is in each video.

Tell us a story

---A wonderful suggestion.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Sir Ken Robinson: Do schools kill creativity?

---This is NOT an EDEN talk...but, one of my favorites that I think is very poignant to what the basic problem is that we have in our society...and frankly - in our hospital. Sir Ken is a very gifted, entertaining man. This goes along with ''Why do these kids love school?'' that I posted awhile ago. Give this video a listen. You will be doing yourself a great favor.

---My personal contention is if we all were more creative and reached more of our real potential we woudn't be in the fix that we find ourselves. It is never too late. We have to just start doing what is right and true and begin being ourselves. Be creative. Think for yourself and treat others like you really want to be treated. Take care of one another.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

5th Eden Alternative Conference Highlights

---This video may be hard to hear at times, but the content is very good. Pictured is Dr. Al Power who did the training at LHH. I, particularly, like the last half of the video where the game shows, the nonsense words and similarities of wheelchair control to joy stick are mentioned. ''For $99.00 dollars, his life was turned around.'' Also, it was noted that low functioning people can enjoy things on the computer.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Friday, March 16, 2012

Eden Alternative Juneau Pioneers' Home Story

---At one point it is said that ''you got rid of the job description and realized that what is good for the my job.'' And ''to receive care is to give care.'' - Very, nice quotes.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

YNN Rochester Reports on the Eden Alternative

---More on caring for others. The EDEN ALTERNATIVE seems to be known in many places throughout the US and the world.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012


My Brother and Friend Hank -

---My brother and Hank both told a story to me about things that they both have done…concerning animals.

---Hank once found a mocking bird that had a broken leg. He took the bird home and made a splint for him. The mocking bird mended and was part of his family. Hank was married at the time. He speaks of the bird riding in his car. He would perch on the steering wheel. Hank said that the biggest problem was that when he turned the wheel the bird would have to compensate for all that. Hank says that the streets in North Carolina aren’t very straight.

---I told my brother, Peter, Hank’s mocking bird story in an email. Peter told me in a quick email that he soon sent back.

---When he was working one morning as a campus policeman for a college in Massachusetts, he saw a skunk with a yogurt container on his head. The skunk couldn’t shake the container off. NOT able to see, the skunk was in and out of the street. Peter says that he knew that soon the skunk would be hit. Knowing Peter as I do, his next step didn’t surprise me. His partner was another story…HOWEVER!

---Peter got out of the car and slowly approached the skunk. I’m sure that he spoke quietly and reassuringly…the whole time. He had a special-type voice he would use at times like this. What was even better is that he genuinely likes animals.

---A skunk in fear is really nobody’s first choice of an encounter to have. Fear is what starts them spraying in the first place. AND...THEN THAT SMELL! After a short time, he had the situation well in hand. I wondered what he would have done if he was sprayed by the skunk…but, before I asked he said, ‘’It would have been terrible if the skunk had been hit by a car.’’ I know that he was thinking of the ‘’poor ole skunk.’’

 ---Oh, yeah! The reason I am not surprised by any of this – Peter has a way of putting others first. So does Hank, at times, for that matter. They are at those times much like many of our nurses and others who work and volunteer at Laguna Honda. It may NOT resemble EDEN all the time…But,  SOMETIMES IT DOES. Be Well.

They both heard the ''helplessness'' of the animal and took it seriously.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Oprah Pro-Aging Challenge: Scooter Diaries Part 3

---Dr. Bill makes different analogies around town. A best of the scooter diaries.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Oprah Challenge

---We have a very good opportunity here. We are able to do this without much trouble at all. [Easy for me to say.] Mr. Jan D., was a filmmaker and taught film for over 25 years...before coming to work at Laguna Honda. Many of us dabble in making films, but speaking for myself about my own...they tend to look homemade. I think that better equipment would make a difference. I'm just thinking out loud. Take Care.
His video called ''HELLO OPRAH'' is posted.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Hello Oprah - Shown on OPRAH WINFREY SHOW

---Another opportunity to champion the a world-wide audience. The EDEN ALTERNATIVE.

Friday, February 10, 2012


                                  EDEN TRAINING REPORT to
Quality of Life
Performance Improvement Team

---Yesterday, Feb., 9, 2012...Paul K. and myself gave our report on the EDEN TRAINING to the QUALITY of LIFE-PERFORMANCE IMPROVEMENT TEAM. It went very well. The PIT devoted the whole 90 minute session to Eden. We discussed what it is and how to best translate it to Laguna Honda.
---We ALL seemed to agree that the three plagues were indeed the plagues that the elderly deal with. The proportions of animal, plants, etc., were amounts that need ironing out, but definitely seem viable as antidotes.
---I, myself, mentioned that the line staff treats the residents the way that they, themselves, are treated. When the positive is accentuated and they are NOT told what to do, very often…workers tend to experience a sense of freedom and grow in the relationships. Many have degrees and the knowledge of how to be people, also. That seems to be underplayed, at times. The tendency is to give mixed messages, instead of allowing that to flourish.
---We showed two YouTube video’s and passed out copies of the Ten Principles. Through comments and questions we ALL seemed to agree that the Eden way and Principles is definitely something that we SHOULD think seriously about IMPLEMENTING. Take Care.

Pictured is Dr. Al Power who gave the EDEN TRAINING...NOT the report.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Bill Thomas on Deep Systems Change

---One of the BEST that I have seen. Today, Paul K., and myself are giving a presentation on the experience that we had at the EDEN TRAINING. We are giving the presentation to the Quality of Life-Performance Improvement Team. We are going to show two of the YouTube's, passout copies of the ten principles for everyone and go over them. Wish us good fortune and I hope that we convey something that brings EDEN closer to being an experience ALL residents at Laguna Honda can share.

Safety Surplus: The Benefits of Upside Risk

---Eliminating everything is NOT always a good thing.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Eden Alternative in the UK

---I have watched many EDEN video's from different parts of the world, at this point, and I am struck at how happy the staff seems. Viewing the resident/patient as another human being reaps benefits on the lives of staff. They see that these folks have the same hopes and dreams that they do. It moves life in a way that it wasn't moving before.

Eden Alternative Mind Body & Spirit Campaign

---To be honest, I most am attracted to the different ways that the computer and interactive technologies are being employed. We have a bunch of easy interactive things at our disposal at LHH. We need the executive buy get the ball rolling.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Eden Alternative featurette

---An EDEN FEATURETTE. There are many animals and children in the video. EDEN is a mindset and each nursing home is different...including the proportion of plants, animals and children.  If one had the option to be with the activities or to spend time alone...I could see how the reclusive would be able to co-exist in this environment. ''One man's meat will always be another man's poison...even among the elder's.''

Tuesday, January 31, 2012


Ten Principles of
Eden Training

1. The three plagues of loneliness, helplessness and boredom account for the bulk of the suffering among our Elders.

2. An Elder-centered community commits to creating a human habitat where life revolves around close and continuing contact with plants, animals and children. It is these relationships that provide the young an old alike with a pathway to a life worth living.

3. Loving companionship is the antidote to loneliness. Elders deserve easy access to human and animal companionship.

4. An Elder-centered community creates opportunity to give as well as receive care. This is the antidote to helplessness.

5. An Elder-centered community imbues daily life with variety and spontaneity by creating an environment in which unexpected and unpredictable interactions and happenings can take place. This is an antidote to boredom.
6. Meaningless activity corrodes the human spirit. The opportunity to do things that we find meaningful is essential to human health.

7. Medical treatment should be the servant of genuine human caring, never its master.

8. An Elder-centered community honors its Elders by de-emphasizing top-down bureaucratic authority, seeking instead to place the maximum possible decision-making authority into the hands of the Elders or into the hands of those closest to them.

9. Creating an Elder-centered community is a never-ending process. Human growth must never be separated from human life.

10. Wise leadership is the lifeblood of any struggle against the three plagues. For it, there can be no substitute.

Monday, January 30, 2012


---Something mentioned in the training. A good piece of advice, also

Saturday, January 28, 2012

SPARK of LIFE - Dementia

---It is said that the memories are still there it is just that the patient/resident has lost his/her ability to access them. They would need assistance in obtaining that skill again. He becomes re-connected. This video was shown at the training.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Green House: A Place To Call Home

---A part of the Eden Alternative Project. Make the big into small. It may take ingenuity, but very doable. ''Be the change you want to see.'' Residents and staff working together.

Where Love Matters

---The Green House is part of the Eden Alternative Project. Dr. Bill Thomas is in this video, also.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Dr. Bill Thomas - Founder of Eden Project

---There are many YouTube's concerning Dr. Bill and the EDEN ALTERNATIVE PROJECT. This video is just a piece of the puzzle.

Friday, January 20, 2012


Eden Alternative I

• Nothing is framed wrong. One is just looking for the next BEST answer.
• When taking picture, noticed that best light comes from within…when person is first acknowledged.
• Residents/Staff can be ‘’diamonds in the rough.’’
• Loneliness, helplessness and boredom are three moods NOT fixable w/medication.
• Care Partner is a better term than Caregiver.


• There is NO ramp for dementia
• We have let meds be our master. If we get our foot caught in a bear trap we would probably give a Tylenol or stronger for the pain...instead of taking off the trap.


• Be The Change That You See
• Staff Is Kept Happy With Positive Feedback – Not By Being Told Don’t...Constantly.
  • Listen and Hear the Resident. You May Actually Want To Hear Some of What He/She Has To Say.


• Loneliness – Loving Companionship
• Boredom – Do things you enjoy and access to children, plants and animals
• Helplessness – Getting one's medical needs met and do something for another

Sunday, January 15, 2012

The Staff/Resident DANCE -

---What we want to speak of is the dance between the Staff and the Resident. I think we ALL can relate to an old-fashioned high school dance. It is a dance where the boys sit on one side of the room and the girls sit on the other. Every now and then we see two of the participants actually dancing together...but, mostly we find the boys with the boys and the girls with the girls.

---This is much the same vision I have of the hospital in which I live. The Residents could be the boys and the Staff could be the girls. It really doesn't matter who plays who in the scenario. The point is that both sides don't communicate very well. I'm, also, not speaking of the fine medical part of the equation. They take care of us pretty well. But...I think that as far as interacting together, the ''Staff/Resident Dance'' - needs some help. It is ALL about the attitudes involved toward one another.

---This coming week we are having members of the Eden Project coming in to teach us how to ''dance'' better, together. I would once again like to reiterate that I think we are better TOGETHER...than we were in 2003, when I began living at the Hospital/Nursing Home. If we were back at the old-fashioned dance, we would see only a few staff/resident couples dancing.

---Just to be sure that you understand that I'm not trying to be weird here. The couples signify the staff and residents. They understand each other's role very well...for the most part. The residents need the help and kindness of the staff...just to do ordinary things. When it works...IT WORKS GREAT. This is what the Eden classes are for. To fix what needs fixing. 

---Let's tweak what needs tweaking.  Good luck to all who are taking the class. I hope everyone hears what they need to hear. Shoot HIGH. Convey your learnings. Help those who need help on either side. Does ''DANCING WITH THE STARS'' sound good to anyone?