As I am in the process of selling items from various family members’ estates, I came across this very helpful website by Judith Miller. She writes this incredible guide with full color photos of every type of antique you could think of. If you register on her website for free, you can access estimates of price ranges on items in her catalog. Very helpful for local or ebay sales to give you somewhere to start if you have no idea.
Archive for the ‘outsourcing tasks’ Category
Caregiver Support: After loss of a parent, who can help you clean out a garage/attic or organize electronic/paper files, estate sales, or a big move?Thursday, April 23rd, 2009
When you need organizing help after the loss of a parent, contact a member of NAPO. NAPO, The National Association of Professional Organizers, operates as the national association dedicated to the field of organizing and provides referrals to local organizers. On its Web site, you will find local organizers to assist with memorial service planning or general organizing assistance. You can find a referral to a local organizer for short-term or long-term projects or a part-time personal assistant on the Web site. The organizers are either generalists in the field of organizing or specialists in particular areas, such as cleaning out garages/attics/basements, working with seniors, electronic and paper organization, estate sales, and moving and relocation.
MAIN NAPO PHONE: (847) 375-4746
Prepared food can be a thoughtful and useful gift for a griever from friends or family, especially during the first few months after the loss of a spouse or loved one. Here are a few options to choose from: Big City Chefs: personal chefs in major cities for hire; Diamond Organics: fresh organic foods from California with overnight delivery; Dinewise: gourmet frozen meals with special meals for seniors and diabetics; Gourmet Grocery online: gift baskets and prepared meals and soups or Harry and David for gourmet gift baskets; and Home Bistro: meals for special diets. Your friends and family will appreciate having healthy foods around when they have low energy to get foods themselves after the loss of a loved one.
I have just hired my first virtual assistant who happens to be in India. I have heard about virtual assistants for years and finally decided to try it out for some internet research I need. The company I am using is Brickworks-other popular places to find a VA include Your Man in India, Assist U and the International Virtual Assistants Association. More about virtual assistance and how it can help you as a caregiver with paperwork and finances on pages 63-66 in my practical resource book for adults with a newly widowed parent, Mom Minus Dad.
I will let you know how the Indian VA ends up working out. Has anyone else has particular success using a VA?
Below are a few questions I asked Sheila Warnock, author of Share the Care recently for my monthly newsletter…(sign up for monthly newsletter here)
JH: When an adult child first realizes they need outside help in assisting a newly widowed parent, what is the first thing they need to do to assemble support team or “caregiver group”? How soon after loss do you think this should take place?
SW: GET EVERYONE ON THE SAME PAGE AS SOON AS POSSIBLE. A family discussion with your siblings and newly widowed parent will enable your family to honestly determine what kind of assistance is needed, who in the community might help and how fast you need to get organized. It’s crucial to recognize if your parent will need a great deal of support, or if they can do well just cushioned with loving practical and emotional backing for a few weeks or months. If a parent needs constant companionship and physical care other options may need to be considered with input from his or her physician. The key is to agree support is needed. A parent might resist allowing others to help fearing loss of independence, being perceived as a burden, or that they could never reciprocate. (more…)
Caregiver Support and Moving Widowed or Aging Parents: How to Avoid Nightmares When Moving an Aging Parent or SeniorThursday, January 22nd, 2009
Adrienne E. Simpson, President of Smooth Mooove Senior Relocation Services, Inc. in Stone Mountain, Georgia, hopes to help other seniors and families avoid moving nightmares by anticipating many specific downsizing and relocation needs of seniors ahead of time. Ms. Simpson started her four-year-old company after she was personally overwhelmed by the physical work and time commitment required when moving her mother from Georgia from Michigan. Below Ms. Simpson answered some common questions about moving seniors…
Q: Ms. Simpson, Can you explain how moving needs are different when you are moving an older parent?
A: Seniors don’t move because they want to. They move because they have to. They move for three reasons: failing health, loss of a spouse, or a house that is overwhelming with responsibility. When a senior moves they typically downsize. They don’t take everything with them. They have to make difficult decisions on what to keep, sell, donate, and give away. The downsizing process is overwhelming, emotional, and traumatic. It’s what makes moving seniors different.
Q: What is the biggest mistake adult children make with regard to moving an aging parent?
A: Waiting too late, allowing their parents to delay the event until they are in crisis. When the move is done during crisis, the senior loses the ability to make critical decisions on what will happen with personal property. The children make all the decisions and often decide that everything is junk and discard everything.
Caregiver Support:How to Hire a Personal Chef to Assist Families or Seniors with Healthy Meals After Parental LossMonday, October 13th, 2008
When we face difficult parental loss, many people don’t feel like eating. This typical loss of appetite grievers develop can breed unhealthy consequences. If this is something your family faces, read about how hiring a personal chef to assist your widowed parent or your family can help out the first weeks or months after loss.
Below, Tom Steiber, CEO of Big City Chefs, answers my questions regarding hiring Big City Chefs to assist families utilize personal chefs to prepare meals after loss:
Q: Tom, I understand that a recent friend of an employee of Big City Chefs who was newly widowed used your services to help her after the loss of her spouse. Explain why she decided to use Big City Chefs to reduce her food/cooking tasks.
A: After a loss, some people find day-to-day tasks very daunting, which exacerbates the stress of the loss. As a result, many grieving people will neglect their eating habits, which is not healthy. Having a chef come into the home once a week or every two weeks to cook a batch of meals not only gave that friend some much needed rest, but it also restored her physical and emotional health to give her the strength she needed to cope with her loss.
Q: Tom, If an adult child of a newly widowed parent wants to arrange for a personal chef to prepare meals for their parent who may live across the country, what is the process?
A: It’s really quite easy. In a pinch, the person making the arrangement could simply visit our website at www.bigcitychefs.com to order a package for a set number of meals as a gift, which can be purchased on our website anytime. This would be sent in the form of a gift certificate that the grieving parent could redeem by then calling our office at 1-866-321-CHEF, at which time we set up a consultation with a chef. If the adult child would like more involvement in the process, calling us to discuss the parent’s needs in greater detail can be done up front so that the parent doesn’t have to handle those matters.
Q: Tom, What kind of cooking training do your chefs have?
A: As a general rule, our chefs are professionally trained graduates of top culinary schools with several years of high volume, high pressure, high-end, fine dining restaurant cuisine. Once they’ve handled the toughest educational and restaurant situations, they can easily take care of our clients and cover a broad range of individualized needs.
Q: Tom, How do you make sure your chefs are safe to go into people’s homes? What is your screening process? Are you bonded and insured?
A very important personal quality that our chefs must have is a high level of trustworthiness, kindness, and effective communication, since they deal so closely with clients. We take chefs through a rigorous screening process that includes personal interviews, creating menus for mock clients, verifying employment and personal references, and conducting criminal background checks. We would rather work very closely with small teams of chefs than very loosely with a large network, as this helps create a very consistent customer experience. And yes, we carry commercial liability insurance with Lloyd’s of London to protect our clients from foodborne illnesses or damage to their premises.
Q: Tom, Can a client request all organic or all local food to be used by the chef?
A: Absolutely. We provide a totally personalized experience for the customer, and many customers do choose local, sustainable, and organic product. In some communities, this might come from local farms or farmer’s markets, while in others, it may come from natural grocers in their neighborhoods. We can accommodate any requests and can customize a package and price to meet almost any need.
Q: Tom, Can you tell us the price ranges for two weeks of personally cooked food by your chefs by different locations across the country? (i.e. Pacific Coastal states $X-$X), Midwest($X-$X), Southern($X-$X), New England($X-$X)?)
We like to provide customers with a package price that includes all groceries and labor. As a general rule, our pricing is fairly similar across the country, although it is slightly more expensive in the New York City metro area. Ten nights of dinner entrees, including the cost of food, start at $400 for 2 people and $750 for 4 people, or 20 and 40 large dinner entrees and side dishes, respectively. Pricing for highly customized packages can vary a bit depending on the type of ingredients used. In New York, we would typically add about $50-75 to either package.
Three of the big issues families can face after the loss of a parent are dealing with estate and household paperwork, bills, and finances. Before your parent hires an outsider to help them manage paperwork or financial jobs they either don’t want to do or don’t know how to do, consider these three questions: